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Thursday, February 27, 2020


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.