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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

States and Stages

I've been reading some intriguing ideas about spiritual growth/awakening/enlightenment that relate to the various states and stages we go through - or in some cases, refuse to go through.

Let's say we are sitting on a cliff overlooking the sparkling ocean and waving palm trees. Whatever stage we are at in our lives, we can have a mystical moment as we sit there. How we interpret that mystical moment depends on what stage we are in currently.

Say we are stuck in ego/narcissism, we will think God favors us specially, over others and gave us a unique experience because we're so wonderful. If we're stuck in a magical/superstitious stage, we will read magical things into the moment. If we are in  a higher stage, we may simply be present in the moment and one with the sparkling light and experience Oneness and peace.

Whatever comes into our lives, we interpret through the lens of the stage in which we currently live. For example in the ego/narcissism stage, we think Jesus loves us and all who agree with us, but does not love everyone. We ignore his many statements of inclusion such as: the rain falls on the just and unjust. We are then quite unloving, unforgiving, non-inclusive.If we are living in the magical/superstitious stage, we will focus on walking on water and turning water into wine, ignoring the deeper messages. We take everything literally and ignore and even argue against scholarship, linguistics, archaeology or any view that is not literal,

It would be interesting if people could somehow be willing to observe themselves and begin to recognize what stage they are in and note how that creates their worldview. How we view life and events tells a lot about our stage in life and little about the actual event.

You see what you are. What do you see?

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Mountain of Life

For a few moments, let's look at life as a mountain climbing adventure.

Each of us is scaling this mountain called "life" on all sides. We are both on the mountain and the mountain is within us. Each side represents part of ourselves and our development. Each plateau offers a moment of rest upon each of the paths, but we must continue to climb because something in us knows that at the pinnacle is God.

We can name some of the paths now, but please name more that seem appropriate to you. Let's start with: intellectual, moral, interpersonal, creative, spiritual. We may be at different points on the mountain with each and certainly have different views from each side of the mountain. In each area we strive to develop our consciousness or we try to hide from our climb and cling to a rock projecting a handhold. Our goal is our eventual destiny to know and live and breath in Oneness with God, whether we are conscious of this or not. I do think that each of us has a heart level yearning that calls us to be all we can be and to be fully awake in the spiritual ground of our being.

A person can be very intelligent and intellectual, high up that climb; but that same person can be near the bottom on moral - for example a Nazi doctor or a terrorist. A person can be well along with interpersonal skills; but that same person may not have a clue about the spiritual side of the mountain.  etc. etc. etc.

In order to fully engage with our mountain, our ego needs to be healed. Arrogance has to go. Prejudice has to be eliminated. Hatreds need to morph into forgiveness and then love. We have to realize we don't have all the answers, and it is highly unlikely anyone else does either - so we need to just take a deep breath and begin life at a higher level of adventure into consciousness.

We can self-evaluate: What is my next step? We need to self-motivate: I can do it, I can grow in consciousness as I climb the mountain of life. We can seek books and teachers, knowing full well each has only a tiny fraction of the Infinite. It is a personal quest for each of us to climb our own mountain and become all we can become.

I suggest to begin in earnest, begin to still your mind with one of the many techniques of meditation - daily - until your mind no longer races here and there like a wild horse, but enters times of stillness, of no-thingness. In preparation for your adventure it is essential to have a modicum of peace and the ability to calm your mind. You will need to hear "the still small voice" for directions for the climb. This is a personal and profound climb. It can be done by no one else for you. It will take you to places you had not known existed. You can only go a little ways without Divine Guidance, so be still, know God, and begin to reach higher.

I stand this day with the movement of Spirit gently whirling around me. I stand ready to climb my mountain and become all that I can be in every area of my life. I am still. I listen. I begin. Thank You oh Amazing One. I know You are with me as this adventure unfolds.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018


PTSD is usually thought of as applying only to military personnel who are psychologically distressed from experiences as warriors.

BUT all of us have stresses in our lives of varying intensities starting with birth and maybe before. Also, we have varying tolerances for stress - some are set off by super minor events and others able to withstand all but the most extreme with seemingly no ill effects. Wherever we find ourselves on the spectrum, we all have experienced stress.

Thinking on this idea, I see how a significant portion of my life as been engaged in reactions to some rather major stresses which then involve after affects that require attention. 

Emotional distress examples:  1) Grandmother's recurring story about a man in Pittsburgh who climbed in a bad little girl's window and chopped her up into inch cubes, and he was coming for me. It left me with a bunch of things to work through - afraid in the dark, fear I was really somehow bad, a lack of ease, a feeling of not being safe, etc.  The original trauma, repeated, left a shadow in me - post traumatic stress.  2) Mother's story repeated every year on my birthday and several times in between: I almost died when I had you, and daddy was sorry he made me pregnant. And I was a size 10 before I had you. It also left me a slew of stresses to work through such as: Did I come here as an almost murderer? Do I deserve to be alive? I'm not wanted. I don't belong here, etc.

There are hundreds, maybe thousands of examples I could share plus physical abuses. I don't need to go there. I hope you have the idea.

Anyway, our stresses deserve our attention so that they do not control our emotions and choices and distort our lives. They are not going on now, but are casting a shadow on today nevertheless. I suggest we talk to ourselves as our own best friends, and I recommend writing/journaling.

Possible questions to ask ourselves and to answer:

  • What happened to me?
  • How do I see its shadow in my life ever since?
  • Can I see that whoever it was, was acting out of their own PTSD and shadows caused by it and it not being resolved.
  • Do I need to talk it over with a trusted someone?
Possible other actions:
  • Begin a forgiveness regime (see my book "The Key Forgiveness and Beyond" in Kindle books).
  • Be aware of yourself and alert to the shadow. Try to turn it around as soon as noticed.
  • Learn affirmations that can direct your mind to healing such as:
    • I'm all right, right now.
    • I forgive (myself, ________) and bless and release it all to God.
    • I am ready to let go and be healed.
    • Today is a new day.
    • I'm whole, perfect and unique made in the image of God.
    • All is well.
Let's walk beyond our own PTSD and blossom into being all we can be. God bless you in your journey.

Friday, March 9, 2018

An Interesting Thought

An interesting thought has come to me. All religions that I know about have some sort of meditation practice. It seems there is a call from deep within the soul to dive deeper into spirituality. Whether we say Ohm or Maranantha or some other word, we silence our ego and enter a realm of Spirit.

That also leads me to consider the idea that meditation might be the bridge between religions. The details of theology may be different, yet we all meditate and seek meaning and God. Instead of fighting each other, perhaps our common ground of meditation can help us speak to one another with compassion and kindness. We may never agree on who is the greatest prophet, or how many angels sit on the head of a pin, but we can meditate together and share the deep experience of entering the spiritual realm.

At this most critical time on earth, let us rise above our differences, share our commonality and move to living in harmony with one another, this beautiful planet and the One God that we all come to know through our different doors. Perhaps the door is not as important as where the destination is, where the experience of the Eternal is found.