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Monday, July 13, 2020

I Feel Led

For much of my life, I have felt led. There are nudges, intuitions, internal or external ideas that seem to come from elsewhere, as do visions and words of counsel. I have come to know, that by the living of this life, the More is vast and somewhat a mystery, or maybe mostly a mystery.

As a student of history, I notice that this has been the experience of some people at all times and places. Maybe it is so of all people, but not everyone cares or is able to share in such a way that their lives can communicate with future people. Not everyone could read and write for most of history, plus for most of human history there was no written language. There were first cave artists who tried to say something meaningful about their lives and beliefs. There were mountains of written tomes that are lost, destroyed or not yet found.

But of what we have from our long ago brothers and sisters, I can declare that they too felt led from time to time by something Other, something More. Various people in various cultures spoke/wrote in different words with different images, but with an underlying agreement that there is another realm which touches our lives in varying degrees.

It seems to me, that some of the touches of the More have been crowded out by mechanistic science and the hustle and din of "modern" life and the turning away from the sacred.  And what happens when we are not open to that guidance of the More and turn away? We get a century like the 20th filled with demonic leaders such as Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, Pol Pot, Mao, etc. The demonic archetype is let loose. That very archetype is rearing up today. The violence it promotes is evident and horrifying. The adrenaline rushes it provides are addictive. The disconnects from the higher brain are evident, and even more evident is the disconnect from all that is spiritual.

Somehow we need to make spirituality fashionable again in order to commence a turn back to the spiritual understanding that inspires and lifts. Instead of giving in to public figures denigrating believers and promoting division and violence, we who still can hear the whisper of the More must stand up and stand for all that is good and holy. Those who stand for violence are attuned to the demonic archetype. No good, absolutely no good can come from the shadow of the demonic archetype. (see Carl Jung re: archetypes and their effects)

Pray and meditate with me for we the people of earth to arise together being led by the More into living Oneness, Caring, Love and Peace.

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

The Adventure of Aging

I was in physical therapy this morning, I have a bone spur in my hip and deteriorating spine, and I heard myself say Old age is quite an adventure. I'd not had that thought before. Sure I'd repeated things I've heard, old age is not for whimps for example, but not the adventure thing.

The idea jumped through me and got my attention. It really IS an adventure into new territory - new ways of being, new ideas, new challenges, yes to an unknown world of adaptations for physical decline, food to avoid GERD or other problems - on and on.

I have to consider things that I didn't used to even give a second of my time. I have to be careful about all sorts of things I used to simply sprint by gleefully. No more walking on uneven paths. No more red wine. No more late nights. Etc.

But then I no longer spend time in frivolous upset. I'm not concerned what others think of me. I can be totally me without concern, because how you take me is your business. I can walk away from stupidity and dramas in other people's minds. I can wear white after labor day and stay in my nightgown till I'm done reading and meditating, even if it is 11:00. I can decline being on a committee or refrain from things I really do not want to do/ be/buy/spend time on.

The Adventure of old age is restricted in some ways, yet it is freedom too. It is perhaps all the more precious because I know there is an expiration date for this particular life. At some point in the future I shall have the grand adventure of birth into the next life, into the realm of Spirit. Maybe I need to re-read "The Tibetan Book of the Dead." 😁

At any rate, I plan to enjoy this old age adventure with zest and goodwill just as I have entered all previous adventures. I plan to continue as far as I can on my lifelong spiritual quest. I will live until I die and make my grand exit here and entrance there.

Long live us old foogies.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Skin Encapsulation

It seems to me this morning that a part, maybe a big part, of human woe is staying in the ego position. From the vantage of one's ego, we live encased in skin and that tiny kingdom is the most important thing in the universe. It is as if we are each monarchs. As rulers of such a precious kingdom, we are at odds with our "subjects" - with others who are different in some way but are "supposed" to bow to us and our ideas. Therefore, we are justified to do whatever to these others. Our egos take aim and ugliness ensues.

As I watch the news, I see ego gone mad, leading people into frenzy, flailing around seemingly unaware of the spiritual. These are the skin encapsulated units of humanity who have forgotten who they really are. They run around, shout, and destroy, lost in their tiny kingdom.

So I ask myself, how can they be opened to spiritual Reality, to understand their eternal journey, to remember their purpose, to be at peace and live in Oneness? How can they be restored? How can they find their inner core?

Each is a precious child of the Universe, of God. We are called to treasure all life and this sacred adventure here on earth. With wisdom, we can solve most anything. With ego we make everything worse.

Oh Divine Presence, lead us out of the prison and tyranny of ego. Lead us to higher ground. Help us remember sacredness. Let the shackles of ego fall away. Open our deepest self. I rejoice in life with You.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Kindness Initiative

During the night a seed of an idea came to me. I'm going to ask you to help water and nourish it.

As we can all see, there is, and has always been, a lot of turmoil and pain on earth. We have the power to turn that around with a simple decision:
From this day onward I will do one or more acts of kindness every day. I will refrain from being hurtful.
This pledge to join the Kindness Initiative means we will do our best to be beneficial presences here on earth. If we do this, invite others to do this, if this catches on, we can shift into a place that nurtures and lifts. Imagine with me how it could be.

I realize that this simple pledge sounds easier than it is. It is easy to occasionally do an act of kindness, but to pledge to do so daily for the rest of our lives is a bit daunting. To refrain from doing any harm is perhaps equally daunting. Many of us have formed a numbing wall around us so that we are not always/often aware or caring of the impact of our actions on ourselves and others. We tell ourselves stories that get us, in our own minds, off the hook. But, we must emerge from the numbing wall and become aware of our own selves fully and honestly.

Those of us who choose The Kindness Initiative as a path are people of courage who open up new ways to walk this earth. Come walk with me dear one.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

My Thinking Pathway

Since I have declared for many decades that I am a seeker of truth, and I am guessing so have you, how does one go about such a daunting quest? What is Truth, and how do we find it?

I was thinking about this partially because I'd been having a theological email dialogue with a clergy friend. One of the things I wrote was, "The God I know wouldn't torture anyone for a minute, let alone for eternity." I was taking exception to Anselm's 11th century idea of substitutionary salvation that got added to official theology. The idea had been debated since Paul, but was not "settled" until Anselm, at least the way I read history. My idea of salvation is that Jesus saves me from a lot of unnecessary pain and angst by showing me how to be in relationship with God and with one another. He is a sacred bridge.

So how do I know this or anything else?

First, I have a touchstone or two of things I know with certainty. In this case, God is a loving, living Presence, always with us, never absent, even if we forget for a moment, we are not abandoned. We live in a state of Grace, even when we stumble. Since I really do know this, anything to the contrary contains falsehood, confusion, willful deceit, or maybe just comes from a shallow thinker. Part of this involves my moral sense, is the idea a lifter, a helper and does it lead to goodness without harm?

Then I look from where and from whom did the idea I'm considering come? How credible are they? What do they benefit from promoting the idea? (As in Anselm's salvation scheme, the church gets control of the seekers wanting to be saved from hell, however imaginary it all might be.) The same could be said of politics and other areas.

I double check, as does this sound like the original and do I agree with the original? Would Jesus have likely agreed with, whatever bit of theology we might consider? And am I in full or partial agreement with them. Is this (whatever) aligned with my experience, knowledge and common sense?

I look with clear eyes at myself to make as certain as possible that whatever it is that I see and am considering is not confirmation bias. I don't want to falsely shore up false or partial truths, even long held ones.

After prayer and meditation, with willingness to let go of even my most treasured ideas in order to seek and find Truth, I arrive at my working hypotheses. Because I am not infinite, I do know I can not arrive at all Truth, but can be sure I am or am not in the right track aiming at my goal or gone astray.

So I question, whatever it is, whoever it is, they have to pass my tests in order for me to take them seriously. I chose not to live in a mental prison. I chose to be free.

Holy Presence, Lord of my soul, guide us gently to Your Truth. Help us to let go of all out of sync with You. Open our eyes and ears and mind to You. Lead us out of mental prisons to freedom.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Dismay

I am watching in dismay the expressions of out of control emotions. Seemingly crazed and ignorant youth attack statues of our cultural heroes like Abraham Lincoln. In a frenzy they shout slogans and carry pre-printed signs. They don't know how erasing history has worked out in other countries (really, really badly). They don't know we learn from history, even the bad stuff. But we have to study history to learn from it, that is, not with a spin on it, but with real intent to understand.

My mind began to contemplate extremism. I saw a circle. Extremists, right and left, meet and are basically the same. Intolerant. Wanting everyone to agree with them, or else. Violent and destructive. Ruled by emotions and prejudices. Easily manipulated by others who want them under their control. One dimensional in thinking. Willing to destroy all in their way. Sure they, and no others, are absolutely right.

Aristotle popped into my mind. His influence in Western culture has been huge. One of his thoughts that has stuck with me since Ethics class in the University is 'The Golden Mean." The happy and healthy way to live is the middle, neither too far to the right nor too far to the left. Balance. Freedom. Oneness.

And, we are all children of God. Time to grow up, give up sibling rivalry and love one another.


Monday, June 22, 2020

I'm Right - No, I'm Right

The who is right struggle goes on constantly. Mostly, the arguments are one dimensional. The argument often assumes there is only one or maybe two causes or variables that produce the outcome being "discussed."

I hear political "pundits" and "experts" on about any topic arguing one-dimensionally. We'll get to religion in a minute. Let's start with climate change. The one-dimensional argument is carbon emissions are THE cause. Let's add texture to this topic. Sun flares and storms and quiet periods have the largest effect on earth's weather. But, of course, we have no known  control over the sun. Trees and plantlife in general take in CO2 and give back oxygen. We do have control over the protection and planting of trees and other plantlife. Climate has continually changed, sometimes drastically, even before there were humans. Volcanoes and meteorites can create huge climate changes. For various reasons, the ozone hole is closing. We could go on, but hopefully we see the need to go beyond one-dimensional thinking here and on all topics.

My particular interest is in spirituality. One-dimensional thinking is rampant in many areas of religion, especially in what is called the organized religions. My personal preference is to look for spiritual principles found in a wide range of places. However, for many people, it is heresy to go beyond the bounds of their group's (tribe's) dogma. So I hear things like, God said it and I believe it; If you don't believe Jesus is God you will go to hell; You are condemned from birth because of original sin, etc. Strange dogma upon even stranger dogma.

I have been on a quest for Truth for most of my life. I have studied history in order to know how these dogmas were formed, asking questions such as: when were these ideas added to the official line, who originated them, what was their purpose, how do they relate to the beginning inspiration and person, who profits from them, how freeing or how manipulating are they, how do they fit with actual personal experience, how universal are they, etc etc etc????

It would be accurate to say, that upon close study and observation, almost all dogmas can be discarded, and should be discarded. They create a mental prison. Instead, in order to free ourselves spiritually, we need to reset our spiritual quest and vision.

Spiritual goals can be explored. For example: I want to draw closer into personal relationship with God; I seek Truth; I want to know God as the Great mystics knew God (of all times and cultures); I want to be as spiritually awake as one can be here in earth, etc.

I truly urge you to go for it. Find the kingdom of God in your very soul.

Saturday, June 20, 2020

A Virtual Life

I'm a delegate from our church to the annual CalPac conference of the United Methodist Church. We meet at the University of Redlands, but not this year. We meet at this new place called "Zoom." It seems so odd. We're on a break right now, but we will be soon Zooming again.

Our Sunday service is now on Facebook. Our committees and small groups of spiritual studies are now on Zoom. Some meetings are not happening at all, as you really have to be there, like making prayer quilts together. Sure, I keep making them and taking them to our cupboard at church, but it's really not the same.

Our world is becoming a virtual experience. A new concept has emerged, "the new normal." No one knows how this will be expressed, except we know things are and will be different.

I miss my previous freedom to go where I wanted, to see people and hug them and share thoughts and ideas, to walk in the park or stroll through the mall, to have civil discussions even with those with a different point of view.

It seems we have willingly given up our freedom. Fear has struck our world - fear of each other, fear of a virus, fear of disobeying those giving us orders, fear of angry mobs. Apparently, freedom is quite fragile and easy to stop in a way we did not previously know.

Before it is too late, let's claim our freedom. Let's be considerate of others and their freedom, but let's not live in the land of fear.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Healing the Collective Unconscious

There are some interesting theories I've read about consciousness I want to share. Carl Jung hypothesized that every thought and word and energy of all time exists in a sort of energy field he named the collective unconscious. It's chaotic, being the storehouse of boogeyman and great thoughts, of fears and hopes, of all range of thoughts.

We can and do tap into it.

There are people who suggest that as we rise in consciousness, we help to calm the chaos in this energy field. To me, this is a hopeful possibility.

Just as evolution may refine our genes, there is a conscious consciousness evolution, and it affects us all, therefore the arc of history. It is conscious because we must choose to move beyond our egos, beyond our conditioning, into the adventure of the spiritual quest.

Each drop of awakening is like a drop of clear water in a glass of muddy water. Each moment of peace, each act of kindness, each choice of selflessness, each hour of meditation, each prayer, each act of forgiveness, all we are and all we do are drops after drops of clear water into the murky pond of hundreds of thousand years of human energies.

Sometimes I see sparkles of clear water in our world. Often I see the hysteria of ego and the dark shadows of conditioning move across the faces of the slumbering mass of humanity - and we are tribal again, just as our ancestors were. But then another clear drop comes, and I have hope again.

Probably not in my lifetime, but maybe in some future time there will be a drop that tips the balance in the energy field and awakening will open like a contagion. All across the planet people will rub their eyes, stretch and see Oneness. Clarity will reign and there will be no more human contributions to the dark side. It is possible, however unlikely. An old lady can dream.

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Conclusions/Hypotheses

The turmoil in the world whirling around many vortices has led me to share some of my conclusions/hypotheses about humanity. In no particular order:

  • Earth is a school for souls. The main curriculum revolves around love, agape, unconditional love; and around spiritual awakening.
  • We all have a Divine origin.
  • We all have purpose.
  • We most likely have been to earth before and will return again, as we strive to embody the curriculum.
  • All experiences are teachers.
  • We likely set up a general outline of this life before coming here that is suited to our personal growth.
  • We are also tasked with remembering our oneness with the Divine and therefore with each other.
  • Our lower energies of anger, lust, greed and power need to be tamed.
  • We are responsible for our thoughts, words and deeds. 
  • How we respond to events tells us about how far or how close we are to living our purpose.
  • Everyone is a member of the spiritual family and is to be loved, encouraged and treated with kindness.
  • Great awakened beings have come here to be bridges out of the illusion of appearances into Reality.
I hope you think on these things. Namaste

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Lao Tzu

I have long been an admirer of Lao Tzu. This morning I came across an old favorite quote.
Watch your thoughts for they become words. Watch your words for they become actions. Watch your actions for they become habits. Watch your habits for they become character. Watch your character for it becomes your destiny.
Of the many people with whom I've had the honor to counsel and lead through various mental and spiritual exercises, I'd say most had little understanding of the immense power of thought and where it leads.

Thoughts are nowadays often referred to as self -talk. Most people say things to themselves they would not say to a friend. Many self-denegrating words are spoken silently in the privacy of our minds. Many judgmental silent comments are hurled as bolts of unspoken daggers toward others. There are many discouraging words rolling around in minds of men and women.

But the energies are felt by others. They are not so silent afterall. Our frequencies are picked up. And then, the negativities often move to action.

Let's look at just one example. internal anger toward self and others festers. Tempers flare, often way out of proportion to the situation. Habits form. We think we can get our way by being angry. We become a person others tip toe around, and we become known as an angry person. We all know people like this I imagine. I know and have known some angry people.

To start in another, positive, loving, spiritual direction, go back to the beginning of the chain to thought. "Change your thinking, change your life" is a proven principle.

I encourage you to print out Lao Tzu 's quote and ponder it daily. It can change your life.

Saturday, June 6, 2020

Urgent - Di-conditioning Needed

There are so many major challenges hitting all of us right now: Covid19, demonstrations both peaceful and violent, plagues, weather, our planet, artificial divisions and more.

In order to deal with these challenges, I think we need to move beyond our conditioned mind and it's reflex responses. I think we need desperately to wake up beyond the reach of propagandists. People are shouting ridiculous things that only the conditioned mind can rally to. A free, thinking person is not easy to control or incite.

A mind is conditioned from many sources - All the voices and lessons of our childhood; our culture; our religions or lack of them; media (which tv channel we select conditions us one way or another according to its bias), until we can not think beyond the conditioning.

You know I'm going to tell you meditation is essential to awakening. Still those inner voices. Find your core. Touch the Divine.

What will you find? Peace. Freedom. Your purpose. An expanded understanding of what is going on. A context of More.

What if this planet is soul school? What if you and I are part of Divine Life on a journey here for a relatively brief time? What if you came here with a purpose that can only be found and lived from a state beyond conditioning? What if that yearning you have always felt was actually a call to come home to spirituality? What if all of our souls are made in the image and likeness of God? What if we are spiritual siblings?

What if we knew and lived this? Imagine what a world 🌎 it would be.

Friday, June 5, 2020

Perspective

The other day I read an example of perspective that I've been mulling over.
Imagine you can take a picture of the sun from your yard, and from the space station and also from deep space. Each of the pictures would be of the same sun, but each would give you a different perspective and so different ways of understanding the sun and it's relationships. There is our sun, the center of our orbit; our sun the center of our solar system; our sun one of billions of stars, etc.
We might view our lives similarly. Within this life we are the center of our life story. We tend to view others as participants in our own story. As we expand a bit, we notice the interdependence of us all. Eventually, we come to realize we are on an infinite soul journey that has meaning far beyond the borders of this particular life. Our ego/skin borders are temporary. There is something divine in it all. A higher consciousness beckons.

Our readiness to step fully in the spiritual quest has arrived.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

A Mentor of Mine

One of my many teachers and mentors came to mind this week. I even named my beloved Dalmatian after him. My dog came to me within days of learning of the passing of Dr. Joseph Murphy, and for some reason I just had to name him Murphy.

He wrote a ton of books (Dr. Murphy, not my dog😄), probably the most well-known was The Power of the Subconscious Mind. He helped a huge number of people, including me when I was a brand new ordained minister in 1978. I was going to Honolulu to found a new church without the faintest clue how to do so, but I had a strong calling that I could not ignore. He spent a day with me in his home, sharing his vast knowledge. He made a huge difference in my life.

The above named book was one of those life-changing books in my life. I had been untangling painful and strange experiences of my life, and found most of my problems laid deep in my subconscious at almost every level, right where I had buried them. At the time of their happening, I was not able to resolve them, so as a survival tactic, I buried them, as do most people it turns out.

The memories buried in my subconscious, were not so difficult to resolve, once I knew what to do. It took some years to resolve some, but with each step, I became freer, clearer, and more and more joyful. I discovered that each moment of my life is, and has been, my teacher. Everything works together on my path to awaken.

All of this to say, I encourage you to heal your subconscious and reap the amazing benefits. Learn how the subconscious works, how it affects everything you do and think and say and feel.

Begin to detoxify it by feeding it affirmations - short, positive, present tense "I" statements, such as: I am all right, right now; I forgive myself; Each day I grow more and more positive. (There is more detailed information in my book on forgiveness regarding affirmations). Forgiveness is absolutely essential! Learn self-hypnosis and give yourself healing suggestions. Read and gather information. As you take responsibility for the contents of your deeper mind, be prepared for truly miraculous things begin to happen.

God bless you. My prayers are with you wherever you are. We are one in Spirit.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Heroes With Clay Feet

My husband and I were discussing one of my favorite movies today, "Amazing Grace," the British one about William Wilberforce and William Pitt and their fight to end the slave trade. The bill to end it finally passed in 1833. And there was John Newton, who used to be a slave ship captain, became a monk and wrote the song " Amazing Grace." It gives me Godbumps every time I hear that song and think of him, his life and his transformation.

Their fights to end the slave trade, their defeats, their willingness to try again and again, touch me deeply. A few inspired and determined people can turn the world around. And they don't have to be perfect.

Wilberforce became addicted to laudanum, an opium powder containing morphine and codeine. Apparently, it used to be used by quite a few people, most of whom became addicted. It caused him frightening hallucinations including ones of chained children in slave ships.

William Pitt became the youngest Prime Minister in 1783 at the age of 24, and was the first Prime Minister of Great Britain and Ireland in 1801. In spite of his position, he was not able to stop the slave trade during his tenure.

In spite of their foibles, they overcame and changed history. These three imperfect men are heroes of mine. And we too can accomplish the great things that call us, foibles and all.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Episodes

We've been watching the episodes of  "Murdoch Mysteries," all 13 seasons. This is my first experience of binge watching, several a day. Quarantine therapy perhaps.

In the shower this morning I realized my life is lived in distinct episodes. It was a startling revelation. Most of my friends and acquaintances seem to have lived in an undulating curve that is not divided so sharply as mine. I can see distinct separations between the episodes, with one being drastically different than the next. And when complete, the episode ends abruptly, and a totally new and seemingly unrelated episode commences.

There are some themes/lessons that are related, but the script/story is unlike any of the others I've lived in this life. One theme, as you likely know, is spirituality. Wow! How different in each episode though. One theme is betrayal/attack, also experienced in weirdly different plots. It's almost like I'm trying to tie up loose ends from a lot of previous earth experiences here in this life. I don't even know if that's possible, but it certainly is a working hypothesis that fits my wide ranging episodes. Pondering it all.

At any rate, it appears my current episode is winding down and a totally new plot is about to unfold. As always, it will be interesting, fascinating and chock full of soul refining lessons. Onward...

Friday, May 22, 2020

A One Time Offer or One of Many?

At some point in our lives, many of us begin to ask questions about unresolved issues around human life. If God is good, how is suffering explained? How is birth into some awful place or terrible family explained? How are horrendous deformities and illnesses explained? Why do some die very young, yet some angry person lives to old age? Why do some, who claim to be religious, do violent things such as inquisitions? Etc etc etc....

There are several possibilities. God is not good and loving afterall. I reject this possibility. Another is that this life is not a one time through experience, but one of many, each teaching us different lessons until we are finally refined, shedding all that is not Godlike.

I began a serious look into the possibility of rebirth many decades ago when I read an article in "Psychology Today" magazine that featured the research of Ian Stevenson at a university. He had several thousand cases of small children remembering their previous lives, often with exquisite detail, and also verified. Now there are numerous studies, anecdotal accounts and a pile of books and YouTube videos on the subject.

I urge you to look into this important subject. I'm personally convinced that this is not a one time event. From my studies and personal experiences I know there is more than one current life.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Hold Onto Your Seat Belts

I know it sounds strange, maybe even bizarre, for someone who has not yet had the experience, but we are part of All that is. I am certain this is so. In the material mindset, we are just biological units. From the point of view of our egos, we ourselves are of paramount concern in our decisions. But from the point of the All, the More, the Divine, we are expressions of the Divine, as are all others. Anything antithetical to you is to me also. "Do unto others... Or refrain from doing anything harmful."

At the beginning of awakening we have connecting experiences. Maybe it begins in a state of awe as we are moved by a sunset or a redwood forest or the birth of a child. We may find ourselves resonating with compassion for someone, surprising ourselves. We may have tears in our eyes over a special moment.

We may begin to meditate and touch more and more deeply something opening within. We may begin to talk with others about it, read some spiritually oriented books, go to some retreats, etc.

For many of us, it is rather like remembering. We knew it before and forgot, it seems, because it doesn't feel foreign to us. All those experiences have led us gently to remember that we are interconnected, not separate, in this life school to learn love.

Then the Light comes. We are fed truth by Spirit Itself. We fill with knowing not from books, directly, clearly, and we will never be the same.

This is a peek at our journey of awakening. God bless you on this amazing journey.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Tolstoy Speaks to Us Today

Epoch Times sent a quote from Leo Tolstoy today.
If, then, I were asked for the most important advice I could give, that which I considered to be the most useful to the men of our century, I should simply say: in the name of God, stop a moment, cease your work, look around you.
 The citizens of earth have certainly had a time to cease our work and look around, courtesy of Covid19.

Many of us have risen to be helpful to others, refusing to grasp selfishly at the transient things offered in our materialistic culture. It is my hope and prayer that the consciousness of us being in this together, the kindness, the compassion, will continue as the choice of humans everywhere. After the virus, may we still care for one another.

As we rise above our challenges and open to others, let us remember we are all spiritual siblings.

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Whose Reality?

It is said to people things such as: "face the facts" or "just face reality." Those words wafted into my mind this morning as I lay half asleep and musing. Then suddenly the thought came to me, whose reality?

Charles Manson's reality or Mother Teresa's? The homeless person's or the rich politician's? The witch hunter's or philanthropist's? The philosopher's or the scientist's?

There seem to be clusters of realities with some individual variations within the clusters. Perhaps the cluster is an archetypal thing. I was thinking of people who are examples of the same sort of reality.

Witch hunters, Nazi SS members, East German Stase, Caligula, Nero, Stalin and other ruthless dictators, Inquisition torturers, etc. In some ways it seems to me they share the same reality cluster. They were/are vicious, without compassion, power-greedy, narcissistic, villains.

Fundamentalists of every stripe have a lot in common. They have strong tribal identity that assures them they are the only ones who are right and all others have to be converted, shunned or destroyed.

On the other hand, there are great spiritual clusters such as Lao Tse, Buddha, Christ, mystics of every kind from Rumi to Meister Eckhart and some people who live quietly in the quest at all times and places of history. They are filled with compassion, seek Truth, seek connection with the Divine, and strive to be loving and a beneficial presence.

A strong identification with a particular reality usually screens out the other ways of viewing life. Occasionally, we read of or hear of someone who breaks out of a gripping reality, an escaped cult member, for example. In general it seems quite difficult to break out of a strongly held reality. I suppose this might be the background of wars, globally, locally and within families.

One of my goals is to be able to live freely, to explore and seek, to remain unstuck in a cluster and move ever more closely to the Central Reality of what we often call God.

Lord, lead me out of falsity of all kinds. Help me to unbind myself of all unlike You. Fill me with Your Compassion and Your Light and Love. I seek to be a beneficial presence here in earth. I go onward knowing You are All. I meet you in the sunrise, in the blade of grass, in the touch of a small child's hand, in everything and everyone, for wherever I look, wherever I go, You are there.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Principle is not Bound by Precedent

One of the ideas that came to me many decades ago via Thomas Troward's writing, is Principle is not bound by precedent. So let's consider the principle of electricity as an example.

Throughout the course of this earth there always existed the principle of electricity. Nobody knew of it, however, so it was not useable. Then static electricity was discovered by William Gilbert in 1600. The electricity of lightening was discovered by Ben Franklin in 1759, and electricity was off and running as a newly discovered principle. It had always existed in principle and potential. Because humanity didn't know that, did not inhibit our use of it once it was discovered. The precedent of ignorance did not stop the amazing whirlwind of devices developed that use electricity once its principles were known.

You and I also are not bound by whatever precedents have formed in our lives, limitations we have accepted. Our self-talk may be the binding agent that ties us to our outworn precedents. Every "I can't, I'm not good enough, it's too late" ties us to the ignorance of who we are.

My use of electricity would seem fantastical to a person just a few decades ago. From my electric mixer, to electric cars to this Kindle Fire, precedents are broken forever. A few decades hence, these things will be archaic remnants from the viewpoint of new and wondrous electric uses we today cannot even imagine.

Once we know its principles, electricity works without hesitation in a huge number of devices. Nevermind these devices didn't even exist just a few years ago.

Let's flip this example to Spirit, The More, Creator, God. Spirit expresses through everything and everyone. It is unlimited. The universe, the tree, the flower, the giraffe, the baby, you and I = Spirit expressing. The great religions, philosophers, poets, artists have known this throughout history.

Knowing this, you and I can uncouple from limiting precedents in our lives. The Principle of Spirit quickened in us is not bound by precedent, by the stories of our lives. Rich or poor, tall or short, man or woman, God calls us to be all we can be.

With God all things are possible. God and I are a majority. Greater things than this you shall do.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Death and Living

Reading Stanislaf Grof's "Psychology of the Future" this morning, I came across a line that triggered some thoughts I want to share.
Another important consequence of freeing oneself from the fear of death is a radical opening to spirituality of a universal and nondenominational type.
He writes a mountain of thought provoking ideas for sure. This one hit me as something I need to explore with you today. I had a vision while reading this seemingly simple line.

I saw a giant diamond, each religion but one facet of the radiant whole. Each facet is tied to a particular time and place and point of view. I saw that some worshippers latch on to one facet so fiercely that they deny or fight any other facet. They cannot, or are not ready to open to Oneness. They are firmly bound by their particular culture, history and time, not able to see that if born elsewhere, they would be looking through a different facet. I saw the magnificence of the whole diamond. It was breathtaking radiance.

The Holy Presence is not, cannot, be bound by human limited understanding, by distorted thinking of those strapped tightly to a tiny facet of the Whole. Perhaps it is time to move from religion to spirituality.

Saturday, May 9, 2020

The Data Dilemma

When we make decisions based on data in any area of life, it behooves us to make certain that it is accurate. If there is no apparent way to prove accuracy or inaccuracy, then we should say this or that is our best guess.

Historically people have made many disastrous decisions based on false data. Everything indicates the earth is flat. More than one bath a year is dangerous to your health. Bleeding a person makes them stronger. It's  a fantasy we could ever get to the moon. This woman has been proven to be a witch. Women have no soul. Hitler will rule the world. The world will end New Year's 1000. Etc.

We currently find ourselves in a data dilemma over the pandemic. We have not lost 2+ million people here as was predicted by the early data, yet our Civil Rights are trampled in so many ways. People's jobs are designated nonessential, implying they are nonessential. Everyone has been treated as if there is a hot spot next door. It is confusing at best.

I learned in statistics, one can prove many different things from the same data, some mutually exclusive.  In order to make wise decisions, we need to use common sense in regards to our decisions and look carefully at any data presented to us. Question it - who is presenting this, what questions were asked and how was it organized, etc? We need to look not only to someone else's data, but seek truth no matter who or is what is speaking. Let us look with clear eyes and hearts.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

The Focus on Symptoms

I just read a sort of parable shared by Fritjof Capra. I'll paraphrase it. You are driving along in your car and a red light comes on. It is the warning light that the oil in your car is very low. You know little about cars, but you know that a red light signals a problem. So, you take your car to the mechanic. You tell him the red light is on. He says not to worry. He finds the wire to the red light and cuts it. There, he exclaims, the red light is off.

I just love this little story. It so plainly exposes the problem of dealing with trivial, outer things as if symptoms can be solved by manipulating them, rather than finding underlying causation. The car  obviously needed oil, not the signal cut.

Looking around our world, I see this very problem in many, maybe most, situations. People are fiddling around with the trivial in an effort to diminish the symptoms, while ignoring the underlying causes. For me, the most germane to my life is religion.

I am certain that there is a deep spiritual yearning in the hearts of most/all people. For the most part, churches are not satisfying that yearning by offering real spiritual experience. The leaders play around with externals such as decor, hours of service, newsletters, bulletins, music, prepared homilies, etc. But they don't get to spiritual leadership that offers spiritual experience. Maybe part of that is that they have no way to lead there, as they themselves have not experienced The Holy One.

On top of that, genuine teaching is obscured by illogical teachings around scriptures. The rich and meaningful myths are taught as fact. The ignorance of history and archeology treat scriptures as if they are historical accounts.

Some examples. Pilot, one of society's more vicious people, is turned into a kinder, gentler version in the Gospels. He killed thousands of people, such as Simon, the Samaritan prophet, and 30,000 of his followers, among others. He was not a nice, kind man. Gospels were written between 70 and 120 CE by Greek speaking people who were far removed from the actual events and after the temple and Jerusalem were destroyed. They had an interest in not upsetting Rome, and by that time were mostly gentile and anti-Semitic.  We don't even know who wrote them. They were called memoirs until the 150's CE when they were finally given names. We don't have any original copies either, the first a small fragment from the 5th century. You can see just some of the problems.

So, in my opinion, there are two main causes of shrinking churches. 1) They do not provide or lead to genuine spiritual experience, partially because the leaders don't know the way. 2) They teach without regard to history and archeology, promoting fantastical ideas that anyone with Google can check out.

There is a huge downward trend in church attendance. Shall we address the causes or continue to fiddle around with the trivial? Will the people have to find their own way to God? Will people give up? Will religious leaders step up? We'll have to see.

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Another Paradox

In our spiritual quest is the desire to find oneness with God. The paradox is that even in the most faltering life, that desire is God calling us. We may somewhat obscure that call with our frenetic life, yet it lingers in the back of everything, nudging us onward. We come to know that God is wholly present with us every moment.

T.S. Eliot's poem, "Four Quartets", includes this famous line: the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.

Years ago, when I first read that line, it made little sense to me. I grew to understand that what I seek is seeking me, always, and that, if I could see through the glass darkly (Paul), I would know I already stood on holy ground. Once the dark glass is cleaned with meditation, prayer, study, experiences, etc, I see face to face (as per Paul). So, I was already there, but could not see clearly. Now I see.

So the paradox of our journey is that we are there but don't know it.

Open my eyes, my heart, all of my being to You. Wash the lens of my life so that I see clearly. Help me be alert to Your nudging and answer Your call. 

Monday, April 27, 2020

The Realm of Attachment

I've been thinking this morning about Meister Eckhart's detachment, Buddha's non-attachment, Jesus' idea of not being caught up in things that rust, and my old acquaintance's (Ken Keyes) idea of addiction as related to being attached to anything so much that it controls one's peace of mind.

I think they are basically talking about the same thing. The things that populate our lives are transient, only God is not transient. Before we began this spiritual journey with our full being, this or that bauble set us into upset. What! I can't have this particular thing (doll, car, job, trip, etc.)  And we would experience various forms of upset, maybe even obsession.

This came home to me with the sudden death of my husband Christmas 1976 to New Year's 1977. The aneurysm in his brain, sudden and massive, and he was gone. He took not one item of this earth with him. What he took was his consciousness, his development as a person, his soul. All those things, and even people, that were of extreme importance to him one moment, no longer mattered. He left this life and all the baubles he had worked so hard to gather.

Since that time, I have expanded my understanding and application regarding non-attachment. I have experienced, read, discussed, meditated, prayed and found amazing things.

One thing I have learned is that non-attachment does not mean cold or withdrawn from life. In fact, it means being filled with a lively passion to live as fully and lovingly as possible, but to do so without attachment to it all. It means to follow the Holy One that is within all of us, and to trust the outcome, even though it may not be what we expected.

The way to get there begins with understanding one of the main purposes of this life is to look beyond appearances and love no matter what. See the Christ within the angry person before you, not requiring them to be different. See the current situation in life as temporary, and also as a momentary teacher. What can we discover in this moment if we truly look?

Imagine yourself looking from a distance at your life, maybe even after this life, reviewing this life. What do you see? What was truly important? How could you have loved more fully? (Please actually do this, maybe write in your journal)

Armed with this understanding, refocus your life now, this very day. As it has been said, this is the first day of the rest of your life. Live it well.

Monday, April 20, 2020

Where Do We Look?

Hoses 11:9 says, The Holy One is within you. Jesus of Nazareth said, You have looked here and there, but the Kingdom of God is within you.

It seems to me that these are two great clues. The yearning of our hearts is to go into a life expressing and in relationship with The Holy One.

How would we walk and talk and choose from an awareness that our lives are sacred, that we are carrying The Holy One within us?

Perhaps we would shift away from ego concerns. Perhaps we would reign in our angers and passions. Perhaps we would find a deep compassion. Maybe we would see the sacredness of all life and treat all with gentleness and care.

I invite you to ponder with me. What would your life be like if you lived with the knowledge that The Holy One actually dwelt in you, in everything, in everyone?

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Turning Lemons Into Lemonade

This Covid19 is a lemon sort of time. Our once taken for granted freedom has been reduced to a tiny trickle. Some are physically ill, some are in financial difficulty, some are having psychological issues, some/many are having spiritual issues.

We are face to face with many dilemmas. One such dilemma is centered around our needs. We are seeing how some needs are not needs at all, falsely created by culture and advertising. In a quarantined world, we can begin to understand that the latest whatcamegadget is not really needed. We need shelter, food, health, relationships, mental and physical stimulation, and we need a first hand relationship with God, The More, The Presence.

It seems to me this is a great time to learn and practise meditation. It is a fine time to read some spiritual books. It is a perfect time to start a spiritual journal. You might even share this blog with friends and begin a spiritual discussion group via one of the new technologies from Skype to Zoom or even phone or email.

You have questions to explore. What is it that you believe? What is the purpose of your life?  What about God? What is your dream for your life? What have you accepted as true that might not actually be true? And many more??????

Let's turn this lemon time into a time of spiritual awakening. This lemon time has immense potential. Let's use it to free ourselves from the worn out patterns and half truths of our pasts and walk together into a brighter future.

Oh Divine Presence, light my way into a closer walk with You. Lead me onto Your path, to deep and meaningful understanding, to freedom. Awaken in me all that calls out to be awakened. I dedicate this time in my life to all that is spiritual.  

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

A Sadist God

Let me say right in the beginning that I strongly think a sadist God taught in some circles is absurd. Many people, historically and presently, paste upon God the very worst kinds of emotional illness, barbarity, etc.  They project wrath, jealousy, cruelity, violence and more - while out of the other side of their mouths they speak of God's love and mercy. They make the Divine an example of multiple personality disorder, and they profess schizoid ways to look at God.

God cannot be both pure love and a sadist who tortures people for eternity. Think about that. No matter what people have taught that, it is ridiculous. Notice the gradual evolvement of the idea of eternal torture in history. It was not taught in Judaism. It was not taught by Jesus. It was added by thinkers who thought too much without common sense.

Think of a human who burns people who don't agree with them, or tortures them for days or weeks or years in their basements, or is pathologically jealous, who is prone to outbursts of extreme anger - and then turns to say they love you. Wouldn't we want them locked up? I suggest we lock up the sick idea of a God who tortures. I suggest we cease believing such absurd ideas about God.

I suggest we look instead to build a relationship with the actual Divine Presence. Fear not.

Friday, April 10, 2020

Practical Resurrection

Once again it is Easter time, historically a sacred time. In long ago ages it was celebrating springtime renewal, welcoming the new growth and possibilities. For centuries it has been remembering God's saving grace, leading ancestors out of slavery. For the last 2,000 years it has also been about Jesus becoming the Christ and showing the way to live and then to life beyond the grave.

In one way or the other, this season has always been about hope, renewal and possibilities. It seems to me that there is a current deep need for this time to be taken to heart.

The early years of the 21st century has its dangers which we are challenged to overcome. Right now we have a long list that cries out for renewal, saving from and rising above. Some are: the pandemic, poverty and hunger and homelessness, political strife, drug addiction, polarized everything, and the usual greed, selfishness, unkindness, etc.

In some ways, the pandemic is awakening compassionate action and old fashioned kindness. You might call it the silver lining, behind every cloud there's a silver lining. But in these challenging times, is it enough to tip the scales and awaken us permanently, or at least send us on a more positive direction?

Humanity has repeatedly had junctures where there were immense possibilities for either good or evil. Our responses in such times have been mixed.

Let us look within to our own highest self, and let it be our commitment to live with the highest light possible leading our way. Let us be all that we can be. Let go of what was or was not and look to what can be. Let that Spark in our souls live freely and fully. Let this be our resurrection time, igniting the Kingdom Within, empowering the best in us to soar.

This is the moment.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Science and/or Religion

The debate has raged in some circles for several centuries - How can both be true? Is one wrong?

Let's consider the possibility that both are true in their own lane. Science is materialistic, and so it is about what can be proven about our material world. Religion and spirituality are about the mysterious, the nonordinary, and the why.

Science can prove human life is initiated by a random sperm and an egg merging. It cannot tell us why this life or most any why about this life. Science can tells us the gorgeous sunset is light at certain angles shining through the atmosphere and pollution creating colors. It cannot tell us why we are breathlessly experiencing such beauty, moved by it, in awe. Science can tell us how a piano works, but it cannot explain Mozart and also how his music stirs something deep within us.

This other level of life, this spiritual experience, has been experienced by people in all times and places. Since the experience of awe, of something More, cannot be conveyed by words, people have employed myth and poem and story and music and art as attempts to communicate IT.

People in recent centuries that are almost entirely into materialism, dismiss spirituality as superstition and go no farther. I would guess materialists have not stood in a redwood forest and contemplated the life of one of the ancient trees, or set quietly overlooking Sunset Beach at sunset and been overtaken with awe. I would guess they have not explored the myths and stories of various cultures and discovered how the themes fit together and how meaning is embedded in them.

Yet I know many of such peop!e and know the empty spot in them. I am quite certain that there is a spiritual yearning in each of us, that there is a Divine Presence calling to us.

Organized religion has turned many people away from spiritually seeking the mystery and meaning of life. It rarely accurately represents the original thinkers and experiencers or the whys of it all. It does not give tools and guidance that lead to The Experience that cannot be told. They did this mostly from incongruity. What they do is not consistent with what the teaching represents. What, for example, would Jesus have to say about inquisitions, crusades, concentration camps, gulags, hurting others, lumping people into groups and then treating other groups badly,etc.

I urge you to meditate, to go quietly into nature, to open yourself to The Experience that changes your life forever. You cannot unknow what you experience once Oneness has lifted you.


Monday, March 30, 2020

Big Day - Sort Of

Well it has happened. I entered this life on March 30, 1940. The milestone of 80 years served in this planet is reached today. It scarcely seems possible that I am actually that old. I'm still me, although perhaps a more refined and updated version. There is a continuity of all ages and stages in these years. I see a stream of consciousness that is identifiable as me all along the way.

The Way of my journey is filled with a multitude of things, places, people, ideas, hopes, dreams, terrors, growth, darkness and light. It has all been my teacher. The lessons of this life that are meaningful and memorable are all experiential. There are precious moments cherished still.

No matter how horrid a moment may have been, it was my teacher, contributing to my awakening. I think of Paul's idea that all things work together for good for those who love the Lord and are called according to his purposes.

I believe a string of spirituality has woven all the disparate moments into the path I walk and who I am. Mother told me that as a child I was so spiritual it scared her. Kind of an odd thing to say. I don't find spirituality to be scarry. But it does speak to the connecting thread of my journey. From my earliest memory to this now moment the theme of my life is spirituality, genuine spirituality, not second hand, not off the shelf, not what other people sell. My walk is with God. The veil is thin and shimmering.

It seems to me, your connecting thread is also spirituality. Look over your life and give thanks for all of your teachers and for remembering, as Teilhard de Chardon said, "You are a spiritual being having a human experience."

 Live this life well.

Love, Light and Blessings,
Marlene

Sunday, March 29, 2020

My Problem with Christian Theology

Part of my problem I should say. Most of theology was developed long after the fact by men who had intentions that might be considered compromised. They had control and power issues. They had no direct information. They had no original manuscripts, and the writings that eventually were canonized were all written by men who never met Jesus, and except for Paul (who met Peter and James), never met anyone who met Jesus (written between 70 and 120 CE).

Theologians were sometimes inspired, but generally ignorant and superstitious, living mostly from the first century to the dark ages. They could not, of course, escape the context of their times. They lived in a world that was flat and the center of the universe. They lived in a limited time in regard to almost everything.

But still glimmers of Light eeked through. We must seek those glimmers if we truly seek truth.

It has been said by many that if someone is pointing to the moon, we often mistake the fingers to be the moon. So just for a moment consider with me that Jesus was a bridge to God, a finger pointing to God.

As far as we know, he never asked to be worshipped or prayed to. A number of times he was reported to have said it was not him but the Father within doing the work. His example of how to pray started with "Our Father", not with our Jesus. He told us we would do greater things than he. He showed the way to experience God's Kingdom, and the way was love. Love everyone. Don't judge by appearances. Forgive everyone. Love God. The Kingdom is within, so go within.

I love church, and I've been part of one or the other most of my life. But sometimes I cringe at what is being said or sung. We in this mixed up world need spiritual connectedness desperately. We can't get it with 4th century ideas and music and misinformation. Let us look clearly at the brilliantly lit bridge that Jesus gave us and walk The Way.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Lost Connection

There is transpersonal research that indicates our experience in the womb, during the birth process and then the first days of independent existence set a tone for our lives. There is also evidence that while we are a fetus, we have consciousness, we have awareness. We are connected spiritually to The More.

If we feel safe, loved and nurtured during these stages, we are more positive and more likely to stay spiritually  connected during the course of this life.

If our experiences in these stages are negative (mother on drugs, attempted abortion or discussion about abortion, difficult birth, loud and stressful first days, etc.), we lose connection to the spiritual world and find life a painful ordeal that is emotionally painful.

Deep internal work can heal the negative beginning and restore spiritual connections. It seems to me, far too few people do such deep work. This conclusion is based on my observations of human behavior over the course of history. There has been horrible and violent behavior in every time.

I wonder how could large numbers of people be awakened to the need of deep healing in such a way they actually are inspired to pursue it?

I used to employ a technique either I developed or adapted, I'm not sure. Anyway in a guided meditation I would ask the person to see a symbol of their current problem. Then I would lead them to follow the symbol back to the little person (usually before the age of 7) who created the symbol. We would then develop the healing in various ways. This technique brought a lot of deep healing in almost all cases. I rarely have the situation nowadays where I feel that can employ this. Ahhh retirement.

It has occurred to me to this morning that maybe it is time for me to find a way to actively engage in helping with healing once again.

I am open to guidance. Show me. Where shall I go? What door shall I walk through? 

Thursday, March 26, 2020

What I See Is Not A Total Picture

Science has shown us that our senses can only relay to us a tiny fragment of what there is. A few examples:

  • Our eyes see a small band of color in the total spectrum.
  • The gray spider web is seen by those insects drawn to it as brilliant, attractive colors.
  • What we think of as solid is actually mostly empty space.
  • Etc
As physics and spirituality merge with similar conclusions, we may find ourselves in a virtual play where we act out certain roles for the experience and learning or because of karma.

We may need to take another look, at not only physical reality, but also at metaphysical and transpersonal realities.

Reincarnation was only banned as a teaching in Christianity in 553 ce. In many cultures and times, it has  been a way to understand evil, the shadow, the dark side, and the continual nature of the soul. Death is then seen as birth into another dimension and then perhaps rebirth to life on earth. We come here to learn and develop our consciousness. For some of us, it takes a lot to break through to full awareness. 

At any rate, I have come to think that we see only dimly - now through a glass darkly, as Paul wrote. But many people think they see with perfect clarity, and so their egos rule and delay awakening until another time and another place. Beware of the smug.

We must do our best to keep learning and expanding, shattering boxes of ignorance. The Vastness of All calls. Step into Infinity.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Shoes and Ships and Sealing Wax...

"Alice in Wonderland" pops into my mind in relation to the world pandemic and to my current reading about holograms. Strange things are unfolding.

Part of the discussion around the holographic nature of everything involves near death experiences, out of the body experiences, shamen, mystics, psychics, dreams, synchronicity, UFOs, intuition, precognition and more. They may all represent dimensional shifts or shifts to other holographic existences or levels. It seems that the reports of all experiences of the above, over vast stretches of time and space, are remarkably similar.

The higher, or next, or other dimension is described as luminous, beautiful, fully love, non-judgmental while at the same time simply reviewing and assessing one's life, incredible knowledge comes at once as in a cloud containing all about some area or other, peaceful, and with a lot of activity.

One of the cloud bombs of knowledge contains the realization of oneness at all levels. People who visit this other realm (whether shamen, yogis, or ordinary people who have this extraordinary experience) return to this realm made new. They are more loving, calmer, often become meditators and lose fear of "death," as they know about soul continuation. Their perspective has changed. They value spirituality and are not bound by any particular religion, for they have seen beyond. If they remain in an earthly religious group, they interpret the symbols and rituals differently.

They often become teachers of ways and techniques to open to this shift in consciousness. If you seek a teacher, do be careful, as there are charlatans selling phony ideas and wanting to take your money.

I find such explorations nurturing to the soul and so very freeing, beyond amazing really.

Open me to the knowing of oneness. Help still my wandering mind to focus and meditate. Lead me to know More. Free me from false ideas. Fill my awareness with Truth. I come to seek You, Divine One.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Silver Linings

Even in a pandemic there is light peeking out around the edges of darkness. Even in the midst of tragedy there are people rising in inspiring ways.

People are coming together, realizing how we are actually in this together, not just in the narrow sense of this one challenge, but also in the bigger sense of beings sharing the same planet. There is potential in this moment in time for humanity to open to compassion and actually being peace to our planetary home.

It's not certain, but I see a maybe. I see hope. See it with me.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Sheltering in Place

Here we are, the elderly supposed to not go out unless necessary. Store shelves empty as panic sets in. A lot of society shut down, no church, movies, gyms, restaurants etc. Borders are shut, travel discouraged.

Why? In my 80 years there have been epidemics and pandemics. There was no massive shut down. I hear the worst one in the 20th century was the 1918 Spanish Flu, before my time. A huge number of people died. So far, this one has a death rate at the most 3.7% in China and a lot less elsewhere. So why are we shutting down? Is there something we're not being told?

The contagion of fear is both fascinating and weird, hard to understand. I suppose fear in general can be hard to understand. Some people are almost paralyzed by their fears. Some people are afraid of what others might think trivial. Some people are afraid of actual things, the burglar downstairs or the potential loss of a loved one.

As a child, I was afraid of the boogeyman so elegantly described by my grandmother. Even worse was her story of a man in Pittsburg who climbed into a bad little girl's window and chopped her up into inch cubes --- and he was coming for me. I spent many a night terrified, hiding in the covers. It was irrational fear made seemingly rational by the authority of adult superiority. It lurks in my subconscious and peeks up once in awhile still. I often say that my sweet husband saves me from the man in Pittsburg.

For the most part, I have come to think fear is rarely useful. Sure in an actual emergency it can rally a person's super strength. But we not often in an actual dangerous situation. Many of our fears are born in our imaginations or in someone else's imagination. Someone has said fear is false evidence appearing real. It seems to me we can rise above most fears.

I've been told the fear of death is behind most fears. It seems to me this is a valid observation. I sometimes wonder why. We all come to the end of this earthly life and are born into another life. I absolutely know life continues. I'm not in a hurry to go on, and I'm not afraid either. Life continues. Let us be at peace.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Stopthink

As I watch the earth drama unfolding before my eyes on television, on the internet and the newspapers, my mind alerts me to the concept of "stopthink." If you remember the crowd and mind control of the old dystopia, you will remember, for example, billboards announcing one group as friend and one as enemy. Suddenly one day the billboards declared the opposite, the roles were reversed, the enemy was now the friend and the friend the enemy. No explanation.

A couple of weeks ago, talking heads on television were talking about the virus out of Wuhan, the  Chinese virus, etc. That's because it started there. This week, the same heads are saying it is racist to call it the Wuhan virus or the virus from China. No explanation for the shift.

I see this dynamic frequently. The virus is just one of the recent examples. Look at the "news" and you will see both historical and current examples.

I wonder about the success of stopthink, how can it be sold without an outcry? Are most people naive, or numb, or apathetic, or not paying attention? Are we humans easily led this way and that by unscrupulous talking heads on television or other prominent folks? What would happen if we humans stopped, looked, listened and said, "wait just a darn moment"? What if we called them on it? What if we refused to be led/jerked around this way then that way then another way. What if we saw it all and refused to allow it?

What if we asked for proof or explanation or motive? What if we employed critical thinking skills?

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Holons

This morning I was reading a bit about the concept of holons. Basically, as I understand it, everything is itself whole and also part of other things including all that is.

For example, you and I are whole, unique individuals, each with unique life experiences and stories. We are also part of a family that also has its unique set of stories. We are also part of a city, a state, a nation and this planet and all who dwell here, each with its own stories. We are part of our solar system, part of the Milky Way galaxy, part of all galaxies. And, we are unique souls, part of the grand spiritual story.

This leads me to understand spiritual words more fully, such as: Christ within the hope of glory, it's not I but Christ in me, I and the Father are one, it is the Father doing the work, the kingdom is within you, etc.

We already are a part of all that is. We may need to shift our awareness to realize the paradox of individual uniqueness and oneness with all. We are a part of it all, and yet here we are standing as one buman, seemingly separate.

My responsibility now shifts. Not only am I to be all that I can be, taking care of my own body, my own mind, my own spiritual awareness, but since I am part of all that is, my participation becomes part of  all that is. Am I contributing uplift or downdraft? Am I a beneficial presence? Am I compassion and kindness?

Whatever I do or say becomes part of the entire chain. For me, I continually strive to be a positive, although maybe tiny, contributor.

Open the vault of my deepest being and pour Your Light over every nook and cranny. Lead me in Your ways so that who I am is fully present. Lead me to a more whole/holy way to be a part of all. I lift up my life to You.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Light and My Journey

In preparing to share my journey on March 29 at the Methodist Church, My 8 Decade Walk With God, I have been thinking a lot about Light. When I was confirmed those many years ago, our minister/pastor gave each of us kids a different Bible verse. Mine was about being a child of Light. Also, I have had numerous experiences of and in Light. Light has played a key roll in my spiritual life all along the way.

A quote from Lao Tse came to my attention this week.
Use the light that dwells within you to regain your natural clarity of sight.
 Somehow this led me think about what I wrote about vortices recently. To be free and able to experience The More, we have to get free of the mind-numbing vortices of fixed thoughts and beliefs. We have to rise above our false assumptions that lead us to believe we already know it all. How can we somehow know Infinite?

We have a light within that is pushing us, nudging us to It and away from our numbness and attachments. Our clarity of thought leads us to see with new eyes, hear with new ears, just as Jesus said.

The spiritual quest is quite an adventure.


Thursday, February 27, 2020

Vortices

According to psychiatrist David Shainberg, Bohm's assertion that thoughts are like vortices in a river should be taken literally and as an explanation as to why beliefs and attitudes are sometimes fixed and resistant to change. Vortices are known to be incredibly stable. An example is the Great Red Spot on Jupiter, which is 25,000 miles wide and has remained just the same as when it was discovered over 300 years ago.

Children are open and curious, partially because they have not yet formed settled beliefs upon which to center their energies and create vortices. For an adult who has formed substantial vortices around cherished opinions and beliefs, a major shift is required in order for them to take in new information and to let the vortex dissolve. Apparently the more fully formed, the more difficult it is to shift to freedom of thinking.

The more rigid a person is, the more firmly fixed is their pattern of vortices.

I suppose to begin to be aware of our own vortices, we might examine what beliefs and attitudes we hold firmly and with absolute certainty. We might explore them in several ways. Look into each and ask yourself a number of times -  What other way of looking at this might exist? There's another way of looking at this. 

Some vortices can be dangerous to the person housing the vortex and to any other recipient of the beliefs and attitudes. Think prejudice, violence to the "other," egocentricity, etc. These seem to be the vortices of the unaware self, the unexamined life. Here the extreme is the "true believer" as named by Eric Hoffer. Think of the raving fundamentalist, the crazed political person, the hyper and extreme anything  - think of anyone so attached to their beliefs and attitudes that no light of any other idea can enter. I wonder if there is a way to help them shift enough to ask the questions???  Typically, a personal crisis is the beginning of looking around and considering other ideas.
 
Some beliefs are not dangerous to self or others, except maybe to rigid belief systems. One of my beliefs that I hold is that God is Infinite, so any box anyone tries to put on God is limited, for God is More. Words cannot contain God. Theology cannot contain God. God is always More. In my understanding, any other way of looking at it diminishes God. For me, there is no other valid way to look at God. I understand that some are comfortable with a view of God that is neat and tidy and fits in a box, and they may need that for a time. But, that does not change the Reality of God.

At the same time, I keep asking the questions I suggested above. I keep reading. I keep dialoguing. I keep open to More. There is no way I can fully comprehend Infinite More. So what I believe is what I currently have as formed by experience, reading, meditating, praying, etc., and it is always subject to expand. Alas, there is no arrival at finally I know it all. The journey continues, perhaps for many lifetimes and many dimensions.


Monday, February 24, 2020

Non-Ordinary Consciousness

My long time interest in non-ordinary states of consciousness has reignited thanks to writings of Michael Talbot and Stanislov Grof. I have personal experience in this area that mostly came as  gifts that come on their own. That is, I've taken no drugs. I have had some of them during meditation and some seem spontaneous. Some came during hypnotic trances during and after my studies in hypnosis.

My own experience leads me to agree with Dr. Grof, "There is at present little doubt in my mind that our current understanding of the universe, of the nature of reality, and particularly of human beings, is superficial, incorrect, and incomplete."

I feel a pulling to resume my own humble exploration. I have allowed myself to slip into a vastly slowed down life, far from leading edge, primarily because just keeping the integrity of who I am while walking through the deeply challenging valley of recent years has held my attention.

We'll see 👀 what unfolds from this point. I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Everything Is In Everything

To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.
          William Blake

Mystics of all times and cultures have spoken about oneness, of all being consciousness. Physicists speak of subatomic particles once together responding to one another forever, no matter how far apart they may be. Holographic plates contain the entire picture in every speck. Much of modern science sounds like the mystics.

I've been rereading "The Holographic Universe" by Michael Talbot and finding it fascinating once again. I read it first in 1991 and got in touch with him. I asked him to be the keynote speaker at a conference I was organising. He agreed to speak at our August 1992 conferences, two weeks with 1,200 people each week. We spoke several times, and he was looking forward to meeting our group, as he'd heard a lot of good things about us.

I went to Russia in May of 1992 to lead a spiritual retreat for two weeks. While I was gone, he passed away. He was 38! I was so sad that we'd only been phone friends and that we would not get to hear him and interact with him, and his brilliant thinking would no longer get to develop and stimulate our thinking. And of course, I had to scramble to get another keynote speaker of renowned in short notice.

I was thinking this morning about the mystics and holograms. Let's say I make a holographic film of you (think Princess Leah in the first Star Wars), and if I break the holographic film or plate into pieces, shine a laser through any piece, I still get a complete three dimensional picture of you. Every speck contains all.

Mystics, some current but mostly long passed, tapped into the space where all is everywhere. They named the All with spiritual words and found within this All much the same no matter when or where they lived.

Comparing the writings and fragments of writings, we find a commonality, a consensus around many ideas. Lao Tse and Jesus and Hildegard have some similar things to say, etc. I used to do a workshop where I  compared eight or so writings of mystics on selected topics showing how any of them could say any of the ideas of the others and be in integrity.

I stumbled into an example of everything being in everything. I was teaching homiletics to a group of future ministers/pastors, and I didn't want them to give the usual sermon of a scripture, three points, a joke and a story. So I began with spontaneous sermons. I would look around the room and whatever my eye fell upon (door knob, pencil, window) they would have five minutes to put together a five minute sermon using the word I gave them. It always worked. You can tell a spiritual story with any prop. Try it.

Everything is everywhere. Look around and tell yourself a spiritual idea using whatever your eye spies.


Monday, February 10, 2020

Bump Into little "r" reality

Yesterday I had a tiny collision with little "r" reality. I was not alert and ran into ego territory, into rules and regulations, into someone's control drama. I was reminded that not everyone is aiming their lives toward Reality, that is, Spiritual Reality, or only aiming there if it fits their rules. This is not to say I think rules should be discarded, but I do think compassion trumps rules. Or if certain rules are essential, they should be administered kindly.

I was thinking of the old transactional analysis days of warm fuzzies and cold prickles. I was given a dose of cold prickles yesterday. This led me to think I must be aware of myself at all times so as not to give anyone any cold prickles myself.

My life focus is to be a beneficial presence wherever I find myself. So part of yesterday's lesson was to remember how it feels and to remember always kindness is the best choice. No matter how important I may label a thing, compassion and kindness are the proper responses. Life is more than the stuff in it. It is a spiritual journey, and that is actually my responsibility. I am to live from a place of unconditional love, responding with joy and kindness and compassion. When I leave this earth, those will be my questions that I must answer - Did you learn how to love, did you fulfill your purpose for this life?

Saturday, February 8, 2020

My 8 Decades

On March 30 this life of mine will have walked this earth for 80 years. Our pastor has given me the gift of giving the sermon on the 29th to share some of what I have learned, spiritually speaking.

My mind has already begun, seemingly on its own, to dig through the piles/mountains of moments of these many years. What are my conclusions, preliminary as they can only be? What are the ones to share on that day? In what way can I communicate them so that they can be accurately be heard?

I realize that each person that hears me has unique filters that cannot help but focus my words one way or the other. Some are more left brained than I am, so that the right brained ideas may be quite foreign to them, or the reverse if they are more right brained. Some love newness, new ideas thrill them. Some want to stay in the comfortable spot they have carved out for themselves and reject all newness. Many generations will be there, each with unique cultural and historical biases. And on and on....

My task is to speak to all of them in such a way that they can hear the meaning of my communication. Only the Spirit in me and in them can accomplish this.

And, the same is true of this blog. I attempt to touch you in such a way as for you to understand in the same way I write these words. I pray for communication beyond words to essence.

May God lead us to deep spiritual Oneness, to Divine Love, to Peace in our hearts and in our world. So be it.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

A Surrogate Life

A thought struck me this morning that some/many people live through watching others live. My mother came to mind in a long ago incident.

She called me up and in a distressed voice said, "I'm so worried about Jennifer!" I racked my brain, not finding anyone by that name in her circle. So I asked her who Jennifer was. I was shocked by her response that she was someone on a soap opera. My mother, who had been a successful buyer for department stores, retired and spent a lot of her retirement just looking out the front window and watching television. She was a help with my children, allowing me to go back to university to earn my teaching credential. She did some other things, if course, but she did spend a huge amount of time watching others live or pretend to live in tv dramas.

My thoughts turned to today. Many adventures are not done personally but are done by watching people on tv programs going on adventures or by entering a video game. Many emotions are felt by taking on the outrages of tv talking heads. On and on...

So instead of living and learning and risking and overcoming, we let others do that for us as we watch. The pretenders on tv are our surrogates for living, if we let them.

I wonder what would happen if we retired our surrogates and went out to fully live our own lives???

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

In The Middle of the Night

In the middle of the night I awoke with an interesting thought, but I fell back to sleep almost immediately. But when I awoke this morning, the same thought was still with me, so I think that I need to explore it here with you. So here it is.

If a person expresses life in any way at the level of anger, judgmentalness, selfishness, unkindness, greediness, arrogance, superiority, etc, such a person worships their own ego; their ego becomes their own personal god.

With elaborate analysis, the root of this state might be able to be uncovered. In a moment of sudden shock, the person might be able to glimpse the reality of their broken worldview. Some might mellow with age to the degree they simply mutter under their breath.

I was shown that these broken worldviews cause a huge portion of the problems here on this planet. It might be useful to explore ways to heal, repair, shift those suffering from such brokenness. In other words, how can a self-worshipping, self-focused person rise out of self -preoccupation to embrace Oneness with God and all of God's creation?

Could we develop a sort of spiritual hospital for them? How can we say so they can hear through the shouts of ego that they require healing? Do we just let the broken ones continue to create harm? Is this part of our earthly lessons? Do we give up, sit back in our front row seats and let them continue to wreck havic?

I don't have answers for the overall picture at this moment. I was shown the situation and urged to share this insight with you. One or more of you may have answers. Think on these things.

I do have personal answers. For me to want others to repair their brokeness, I must begin by repairing my own. Wherever I see ego rise up in me, I must face it and take away my permission to let it ruin my spiritual life. I must live with lavish love and generosity as modeled by the one I have followed since early childhood. In and through it all, the twists and turns, the ups and downs, to God be the glory.


Sunday, February 2, 2020

Karma or Reaping the Fruits of My Sowing

Buddhists speak of karma. Christians speak of sowing and reaping. Scientists speak of things like equal and opposite reactions. Philosophers speak of beliefs drawing us to things that match our beliefs. It seems to me that they are a cluster of similar concepts.

Whatever I do or say or think = energy. Energy cannot be destroyed, only transformed. It matters what energy I put out there.

There are several theories about our redemption from our dark energies and the resulting actions that cause hurt and pain. Most agree these kinks in our souls have to be paid for. Fundamentalists say you will burn or freeze (Dantes lowest hell was freezing) forever. Catholics tell us if you are only a little bad, purgatory awaits you for as long as it takes to straighten you out. A God of love is made into a Hitlerian villain. I simply cannot believe in that schizoid idea of God. If God is love, this is not how love behaves.

But then there is the idea of rebirth. It is fascinating. There have been quite a few studies on small children who still remember their past lives, for example at the University of Virginia. It warrants serious consideration I think.

The basic idea is that it takes multiple attempts to refine oneself to be in a state of compassion and oneness with Spirit. The dark side cannot win. Even for the most horrid person, there is eventual enlightenment, although maybe after many, many lifetimes. So there is hope.

Since we arrive here with no direction book and just have to figure it out, is no wonder we make so many blunders. That's no excuse, for we have to try.

Just as our bodies have healed of many things in this lifetime, so too can our souls heal. We can turn to the Light and do our best to let go of selfish ego things and embrace  compassionate living. We can pay for some of our negative karma by how we live out the rest of this life. I highly recommend this.

Oh my goodness Lord, I see clearly the dark seeds I have sown. Lead me to turn to live not for myself, but for You. Help me grow in kindness and compassionate living. Show me how I can make amends. I truly wish and choose to be a beneficial presence wherever I am. With Your Guidance, I do set my foot upon this path today and forevermore.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Words, Words, Words

Funny things words. They can seem the same, but have different meanings to those who hear or read them. They can point to enlightenment, but are not enlightenment. They can be sweet or cruel. They can reach flights of love and joy, or they can lead to despair. They can be used to free the mind or box it in. So incredible the flexibility of words.

I was thinking of "My Fair Lady" in the shower this morning. I could hear Elisa Dolittle/Audrey Hepburn say, words, words, words. Then the historic use of words came to mind. Words have often been power and control tools. There have been lovely sonnets and sweet uses of words too of course, but maybe not as the majority of uses.

Take "God," for example - a word pointing to the limitless Divine Mystery, but more usually used to diminish and box in the Infinite to someone's supposed understanding. So "God" is used as a weapon or control device. Think of examples: my teaching of God is the one and only correct one, and anyone disagreeing needs to be shunned or punished or killed. We see that played out over and over again in history.

I think we need less words about God, less arguments about God and more experience of/with God. Whoever speaks or writes can only feebly point to the Truths. The Infinite cannot fit into the tidy box of words. God is always infinitely more.

Divine More, lead us out of the tyranny of words into the experience of You that transcends all limits. 

Saturday, January 25, 2020

5 Hours a Week!

Just a moment ago I read a survey that in a modern family parents spend only 5 hours a week in face to face communication with their children! I felt my danger signals flare.

The common reasons/excuses were watching television, children on their phones or in their rooms.

Helping, training, encouraging our children to be Persons, to find and develop their talents, to instill integrity and compassion, to experience love, to  understand the importance of work and participation, to teach critical thinking skills and on and on - these are job descriptions for the position of parent. If these jobs are not done, what happens to the child left to their own devices?

We find ourselves with a generation perhaps unlike any other. They are sometimes called snowflakes because they wilt so easily. We also read that many lack face to face communication skills because they have a life lived primarily with electronic devices. We find a numbness and despair that lead to this huge catastrophe of drug addiction. There are an alarming lists of symptoms of these children who have been marginalized by lack of parenting.

Then there is the problem with the parents who find a television program more important than their children. I wonder how they were parented??? But there is also a decline in honoring what has been sacred for much of human history. Life is sacred. Much of modernity does not act that way. Our nation has seen over 60 million abortions since it became legal in 1973. Discard human life with abandon and then ignore for the most part the children who were born. Life is sacred. We must act that way.

I think for our children to be all they can be is an important goal for us all. We humans need to do some soul searching. As my old Zen master said loudly and regularly, "WAKE UP!!!"


Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Incarnation, A New Understanding

It's fun when we discover that things we think and are considering are also thought by others. I discovered Hans Frei this morning. He converted from Judaism and became an Episcopal priest and professor of theology at Yale. Karen Armstrong shared this about him:
Frei argued, the person of Jesus should establish the norm by which Christians judge the world and current events. He was certainly a historical figure, yet he did not have religious value simply because he had existed once upon a time; he became factual only when incarnated in our daily lives.
I wanted to shout "YES" when I read this. So many things danced in my mind at once. Paul's Christ within, his life now the life of Christ; Eckhart's assertion that Christ born from Mary is insignificant if not born in us; on and on ideas I've read flooded in. Then my own experiences validating and validated.

Yet religion today in many ways is not this. It is often shallow, prosperity gospel for example, or Jesus is my buddy. Or it is meanspirited, such as gleefully watching those with a different understanding tortured in the rapture. Or it is violent, terrorism sanctioned. How can we, is it possible, to shift to sincere inquiry and into a life lived spiritually?

The path of actual spiritual awakening is not easy. It requires ernest self inquiry and emptying, kenosis. It requires turning to the right brain, to the heart. It requires compassionate seeing and hearing and speaking and doing. It requires transformation which involves personal cosmic union and the birthing and nurturing of the Presence that was known and seen in Jesus who became The Christ.

It seems to me that people, at least some people, have grown weary from seeking in empty places and yearn for more. Perhaps this time is ripe for awakening the seed of God in us and stepping into the path of incarnation.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

A Thorn In The Paw

Contemplating what I consider to be one of my failures, a particular insight showed up. A little background first.

This beloved person turned to evangelical fundamentalism, complete with all of its meanness, judgementalness, holier than thou anger and ego. The self-preoccupation of being "saved" is opposite of the emptying of self to be open to Spirit taught by almost all spiritual masters of all traditions. Self-preoccupation is an activity of the ego. In this case, my beloved person fell prey first to falsehoods instilled by his grandmother and the accompanying seeds of rage. He was, I suppose, pre-conditioned to slip easily into the mean-spirited theology where he finds himself.

Actual spiritual awakening requires healing ego, emptying oneself, and walking into mystery.

So, I saw him in my morning quiet time this morning in the old story of the raging lion with a thorn in his paw. As you may recall, as soon as the thorn was removed, the lion stopped raging and was grateful for its removal. Immediately the question arose, how to remove the thorn/thorns???? I don't know the answer at the moment. What I do know is that, because God gave me the vision, the thorn is removable. There is hope.

Divine Presence, how thankful I am for the insight You showed me this morning. Whomever, whatever, however the thorn is to be removed, I rejoice. May Your profound Love prevail in the lives of all with thorns of pain. May healing sweep across the land and thorns fall in great mounds. May Your people be set free.


Friday, January 17, 2020

What Can One Person Do?

I continue studying history, fully aware that my seemingly innate idealism and optimism are up for debate, maybe death.

Do I allow myself the expense of discouragment? Do I shift to the darkness and jadedness of despair? Do I retreat to my own little sanctuary?

I think not. Maybe awakening is not possible for all in this lifetime, but it is possible for some. Maybe this one person cannot make a difference for the world, but this life can make some positive difference. This light can shine wherever it finds itself on the path of this life. A little here, a little there adds up to something more than if it didn't happen.

So I urge you not to give up. All of our little bits add up. Who you are and what you do matter.

Monday, January 13, 2020

Politics and Religion

This morning I've been reading some more of Karen Armstrong's book, "The Lost Art of Scripture, Rescuing the Ancient Texts." I am enjoying this book immensely, and it so packed with information and ideas that I know I'll have to read it multiple times.

Anyway, I then began sewing on a quilt, during which time some thoughts formed I want to share with you.

Confucius and Lao Tse and others thought a person has to handle ego issues, connect with transcendent reality, be humble, etc. before  being able to serve in government or other civil activities.

It seems to me, as an observer, none or very few of today's politicians qualify to serve the public under those criteria. I see giant egos, power struggles, greed, self -serving, and not a glimmer of enlightenment. In fact, many are even anti-spiritual.

I tend to agree with Confucius and Lao Tse about the ideal leaders. It makes me wonder many things. Is it even possible in today's world? If no change, what future do we have? Can we somehow bring world leaders to seek the spiritual and heal the ego?

Let's contemplate and see what comes to us.


Saturday, January 11, 2020

Infused Clay

This morning I lounged in bed a little while. I became acutely aware of my body, so soft and flexible, yet made of clay, fully of earth. So seemingly unlike clay, infused with spirit and therefore so much more. The miracle of it struck me in a new way.

It seems to me that my soul is housed at present in this amazing body composed completely of earth with something spiritual activating it. I've been with people when their soul, their essence leaves. The body instantly changes. We are not our bodies, but we do need them while navigating earth life.

I think we need to celebrate our earthen vessels and take as good care of them as possible. Our souls have a lot to learn and do here.

Monday, January 6, 2020

In What Dimension Do You Live?

This morning an extraordinary thought has been rolling around in my mind. In this time in history, more and more people are living a two dimensional life. Like the old story of the flatlanders, we move up and down and sideways, but few move from depth to transcendence.

More and more people spend increasingly longer hours involved in the flatland of electronic devices. I have met a few who recognized this and speak of escaping. The various devices are hypnotic and therefore addictive. Then the real world is not the focus, but is an irritation. Imaginary worlds of two dimensions grab a hold of a person. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, phones, tablets, computers, and television become what's important.

When was the last time you walked barefoot in the grass, laid down and made up cloud stories, truly observed a tree and pondered its life, looked deeply into someone's eyes and fully listened to them with your heart, went days without touching an electronic device? Do you spend more than an hour a day on electronic devices?

How we spend our time shows us what we worship, what is important to us. Is getting the newest device more important to you than the time honored ways to be a human such as spiritual and charitable pursuits, reading wisdom writings, engaging in meaningful conversation, developing yourself to be fully and gloriously all you can be, being in and communing with nature, etc?

So, let's look ourselves squarely in the eye and assess where we are in life and where we now choose to be. Expand, Create, Be Free.

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Paradox of It All

There is a spiritual hunger active in our souls. Historically we know this hunger can be filled in quiet, in contemplation, in communing with nature, all of which lead us to The Presence and to knowing rather than knowing about.

The problem is that our "modern" life is noisy, busy and often in cities where most of nature is paved with concrete and asphalt.

So, we might ask ourselves, how can we satisfy our spiritual hunger? How can we carve out spaces in our lives for quiet, for contemplation, for nature? How can we shift from knowing about God to actually know God?

It seems to me, it has to be intentional. We have to recognize our own particular barriers and plan a way through them. For each of us, it might be a different route. If you've been reading my musings, you probably are aware of my route. You might begin there or might wish to go a more unique way.

I do urge you to begin, if you have yet to start, and to continue. I know for certain that The More is calling.