Leo Tolstoy on God

LEO TOLSTOY ON GOD: "When you look inside yourself, you see what is called 'your own self' or your soul. You cannot touch it or see it or understand it, but you know it is there. And this part of yourself--that which you cannot understand--is what is called God. God is both around us and inside of us--in our souls.

The more you understand that you are at one with God, the more you will understand that you are at one with all His worldly manifestations."

Sunday, October 5, 2014

In Defense of EGO: The Power of "POWER."

 Photo: Ancient and Mystical Order of the Rosae Crucis (AMORC). http://www.rosicrucian.org
"Come, step back from your close view of the obstacles that seem to surround you. Close your eyes to them for a while and create a new picture. Leave the past and the present out of your consideration and make a new life, a new day, beginning with tomorrow. Build it up part by part in your mind and in your conversations and contacts with those around you until you have a perfect picture of the future that is just beyond today’s horizon. Then step forward bravely into this picture; and with determination start your journey along the line that leads to your new life. You will find yourself master of the picture and of those realities, and you will find in it the greatest happiness and rewards, and every effort, every thought devoted to it."
--An AMORC Leader
The mystical insights offered by the Ancient and Mystical Order of the Rosae Crucis, with US headquarters in San Jose, Calif., are very empowering. Although not unique in its teachings on mysticism, AMORC still manages to put our everyday struggles and challenges into such perspective that their power is diminished. Having done self study on mysticism via AMORC for years, as we focus on the "Power of Power" this month,  I have chosen to highlight this small segment of the teachings. This is in gratitude for the perspective the AMORC teachings offered me as I moved along *my journey of self-discovery, and as I celebrate this milestone October 5 birthday. "Thank you, AMORC."

(EDITOR'S NOTE: Happy Milestone Birthday To Me! In celebration: I use gold, orange and yellow, my favorite colors, to highlight.)
Whether it is words from a mystical order of study or from a philosopher, such as Henry Thoreau, we realize there are powers within us that remain dormant until we put into practice faith and some of the other 12 powers we've highlighted in blog posts on Namaste' Wholistic throughout this year.

From Thoreau:
"If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours."
Many of us may not realize that this power of powers is always at work in our lives. But without the power of powers, we would be immobile for most of our lives. When we are faced with a challenge or obstacle in our path, we somehow manage to reach in and grab hold of that dormant, unknown power. (See this advertisement that highlights that power at work: Misty Copeland's Under Armour Ad).

From Tut's Universe:

"The absolute, most sure-fire way of physically moving in the direction of your dream, on a day-to-day basis, without messing with the 'cursed hows,' is living them, now, to any degree that you can. 
---     The Universe

Where then do we get this confidence to move forward, into an unknown future, into the seeming darkness, still expecting success?

"We just do," may be the simplistic answer. 

But knowing that everything has a source, those of us who have studied the mystical and spiritual know there is always a greater power at work.

"The Power of Power" is based on knowing that the consciousness  we are is the creator of all things and conditions in our lives and affairs, good or  bad. Through most of the spiritual information uncovered and taught by most prominent practitioners in the field, we know that our "thoughts are things" and through the power of visualization (creativity), we are able to believe and see everything we'd like to achieve in life before it becomes manifest.

By controlling the quality of our thoughts and visions, we are able to create the life we desire.

Now, seriously, is it that simple?

Yes. It ought to be.

Everything we currently are experiencing in our lives came from the power of creativity we put to work. "We achieve what we believe." 

Simple as this may be, it takes a lifetime for most of us to get our thinking right enough to create the life we desire. So many, many factors play into our thoughts: our conditioning from childhood, our associations and experiences, and most of all the teachings to which we are exposed from birth.

Living an earthly life, it is almost impossible to never let go of the connection to ourselves (our Soul). At an early age, until about age seven, experts say, we have this special connection. But as we go (and grow) through our lives, we begin to lose the connection, especially as our earthly demands set us adrift in our day-to-day.

It is beyond difficult to believe that we are creating our lives as we go along, when we are brought up with religious teachings that speak of a God above and perhaps one who punishes us. 

No one sees that man as a friend. So we try to stay away as far as possible, only making a connection when we want to beg for something, or plead for forgiveness and mercy.

How can this imposing figure we've been taught about all of our lives ever become our friend?

Ahh...but this is where, if we are discerning enough, we would see the truth: when we're not busy looking and scheming and plotting about how to "fix" the things we've messed up in our lives, an unseen hand seems to shoot out from "no where" to rescue us from ourselves..

The truth: there is no unseen hand...it is our own spirit...our own Soul...that finally gets a chance from us going to and fro in the world to take corrective steps by forcefully steering our course.

Now, that is the POWER OF POWER!

It is the spirit at the steering wheel of our lives that has to sometimes step into our lives in a bold way to avert a collision course for us.

The Power of Power, though, does not only want to show up when we're in trouble. The nature of this power is that it wants us to step back and relax into its truth... and watch it at work.

So, why don't we allow it?

(Photo Credit: Jean-Philippe Detervlle "L'ego vit comme un pendule qui oscille continuellement entre le passé et le futur. Pour le neutraliser, nous devons développer l'attention et vivre au présent. El ego vive como un péndulo que oscila constantemente entre el pasado y el futuro. Para neutralizarlo, debemos desarrollar la atención y vivir el presente.L'ego vive come un pendolo che oscilla continuamente tra il passato e il futuro. Per neutralizzarlo, abbiamo bisogno di sviluppare l'attenzione e vivere nel presente. JPD. English: The ego lives like a pendulum that oscillates continuously between the past and the future. To neutralize, we must develop attention and live in the present.)

Our egos... 
very simply...the part of our humanness that keeps driving us forward also often blocks us from our good.

Unknown to this "entity," called ego--also called by whatever name you're known--we are
 not capable of doing anything without the Power of Power at work in our lives.  

Yes, the ego drive, known by the name we're called, propels us. But it is the spirit within us, the Soul, always a silent witness, that goes forward to do the work.

Jesus knew this well when he said, "Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works."- John 14:10

Step back and see this.

Step back, as the AMORC leader urges us to do  at the beginning of this post, and take another look.

When  you do, you'd want to take a backseat permanently in your life...and enjoy the ride.

Chandon and Moet & Chandon
have long been my celebration champagne

Let the Power of Power, your dear Soul, have its way. (On Eagle's Wings on YouTube)

Remember this always: Your Soul is an individuated consciousness of the Cosmic Consciousness, the one Soul, God, of our universe.

As I move forward into another decade of my life, which has taken many, many circuitous turns as I've grown older and tried to unlearn most of my old conditioning, I would choose to have it no other way.

I leave you with one insight that has served me throughout the challenges that sought to upend my days on Earth:

 "Circumstances do not make the man but reveal him to himself." James Allen.

(Now singalong with me as Stevie Wonder serenades: (Happy Birthday by Stevie Wonder)  (Another from Stevie Wonder)

Now...let the celebration begin
with my favorite champagne. 



*NOTE-THANK YOU ALL FOR HELPING ME ALONG THE THE JOURNEY-I would like to personally thank the following individuals: Rev. Greg Barrette, teaching me how to meditate while at Unity Palo Alto; Rev. Stan Hampson, a master Unity teacher, Rev. Karyn Bradley, my most recent and awesome Unity teacher @ Unity Palo Alto, Venerable Canon Veronica Ritson of Trinity Cathedral of Phoenix, AZ,  for serving as my spiritual director during my time in AZ, for guidance and gentleness of spirit. For inspiration, I've also gained tremendous insights from OWN, the Oprah Winfrey Show, Joel Osteen and T.D. Jakes. I've also enjoyed many years' of spiritual study via Unity School of Christianity, Lee Summit, MO, and also through my spiritual program with Arizona Ecumenical Institute of Spiritual Directors, Scottsdale, Arizona. Without a doubt, too, I never would have made it very far on the journey without the works of many great spiritual writers and teachers: Dr. Wayne Dyer, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Shaki Gawain, Mark Nepo, Michael Singer, Gary Zukav and so many others, including the writings of Brother Lawrence, St. John of The Cross, St. Teresa of Avila, St. Therese of the Little Flower, James Allen, Joel Goldsmith, Neville Goddard, Unity's Charles and Myrtle Fillmore, Mary Kupferle and other Unity teachers who have passed on. I obviously also have to thank family members and friends, especially my Sisters-Friends Bernice, Berteley and Thenia, who have remained committed and steadfast with me throughout the l-o-n-g "desert" years. To you all, I say, "Thank You! I could not have made it to this age and stage, without you." Most of all...MOST OF ALL...I give the Glory to God, his Mercy and Goodness... and KUDOS to this determined, unrelenting Soul of mine that wouldn't quit pushing itself through, when I wanted to give up: "You are THE ROCK and SALVATION of MY LIFE!" 

Sunday, September 7, 2014

In Defense of EGO: The Power of Order

    Photo Credit: Hassim Haramein whose unified field theory describes mathematically how the universe has a self-similar structure and dynamic on all scales from the infinitely big to the infinitely small, how within each scalar boundary condition there is a holographic representation of the whole: an infinitely connected holofractographic universe... http://resonance.is/More details in Nassim Haramein's paper: "Quantum Gravity and the Holographic Mass" in the journal Science Domain International:

At the quantum and cosmological levels, everything is connected.

That's the theory of many scientists, including Hassim Haramein, whose work is highlighted above.

Using Physics, and Quantum Physics, to explain this to the average non-science person may be challenging. So we'll take it from the bottom.

We first look at the basic building blocks in life, which physicists say are protons. These are the primary foundation of everything; they are at the center of every atom and therefore are everywhere and in everything. If we understand the movement of protons, we would understand the connectedness of all things, scientists say.

So what's the bottom line of all this to you and me? 

There is an order to everything in the Universe, even at the minutest level, and at that level and throughout the Universe, everything is connected.

That's it...in a tightly knit shell.
Photo Credit: Rosario Egovil Forttini

The significance of this connectedness may not strike us in any way as new information.
We're aware at some levels that we're all the same.

Just look at us: African, Arabian, Asian, Caucasian, Indian or other, we're fundamentally the same in the way we function in the world. We all need the same key ingredients to stay alive: air, water, food, sunlight, sleep, et al. The race or color of the person does not make the necessities of life go away. 

Purple, green, yellow, orange, blue...fundamentally...all things are the same.
 Knowing we are the same in our essential humanness has created the bonds we have when we interact with each other in our households, communities, workplaces, country and throughout the world.

Our humanity is the key that connects us. 
Yet, it is this humanity that separates us.

If, in our essence, we are aware that we must come together for our basic survival, somewhere else in our makeup, we're aware of our separateness.

The part of us that connects, yet separates us, is our EGO, which is all so very human.

Our humanity requires we have a sense of identity, an Id, an EGO. This allows us to evolve as individuals. But somewhere in the development of this Id, our EGO, we also believe that in order for us to thrive, not survive, we must remain separate.

So, many of us find ourselves sharing ...up to a point of necessity.
Then comes the separation.

"It's human nature," we cry. 

Yes. It is.

Are we then going to be relegated to the pits of hell that develop from our separation and our humanity?

Luckily for us all...there is that order in the Universe...that connects all things.

It is: Divine Order.

This reigns supreme throughout the Universe.

Just as the patterns are the same at the quantum and cosmic levels in the Universe, so are the patterns of our days and our ways. All is ordered in the Universe by this activity we recognize in the spiritual world as "Divine Order." 

At our essence, we are Spirit. This allows us to connect at our minutest levels, when our physical differences would cause us to separate.

This Spirit is the beingness of us all.

With this one spirit operating throughout all mankind, we should be able to stay connected at all times.

What then, is the problem?

Again...our humanity...our EGOs.

The activity of Divine Order then has to supersede the activity of our humanness and our individual EGOs. And actually, it does.

Throughout our days on Earth, we may individually plan our lives to unfold in such a way that benefits us and our families primarily in all that we do. 

Were it left to our individual selves, every man or every family would be for himself and themselves only. Yet, we know that this does not occur.

Daily, we witness acts of Compassion, Love, Sharing, Caring, Giving and Receiving.

These very acts are Divine Order in operation at the most fundamental levels.

But even greater acts than these occur minute by minute in our lives when we receive good or bad news and tend to be euphoric or sad. In these minute-by-minute occurrences, life is evening the score by Divine Order.

Were we to look at the patterns of our individual lives and those around us, we may see instances of tremendous joy and sadness,  successes and failures, periods of extraordinary accomplishments and voids...
Photo Credit: Lofti DK

It may seem unfair that certain people and/or groups' lives are filled more with joys, successes and accomplishments than others. On the human level, yes, it does seem unfair.  
"What about cosmic balancing?" we ask.  
"Where is the Divine Order in this?" we ask.
"Do not judge by appearances but judge with righteous judgement."- John 7:24
The life that may shine with all the wealth and the glory may have miseries untold. 
Still...give me that life!
"I can feel guilty about the past, apprehensive about the future, but only in the present can I act. The ability to be present in the moment is a major component of mental wellness." -Abraham Maslow, via Gratefulness.org
Yet were we to focus on our lives in the moment, instead of being trapped by past errors, past habits and behavior, and look only to what's in front of us to do, then we would overcome these instances of jealousy, envy and resentment.

By going deeply within when life overwhelms or troubles us and connecting to the source of our being, we'd know that our Soul is moving inexorably on its path to good. We may not see the good, in the moment, but we can trust Divine Order is at work in our lives. 

We know there is order in the Universe, as we know it takes a baby nine months of gestation before being born. Yes, science explains part of it, but we know the truth that is buried within that explanation: something greater is at work. 

Release, let go and do the work that is yours to do...trusting that all is well.   

A lake suddenly appeared in the middle of the Tunisia desert earlier this year. 
Whether the water were polluted or not, people were intent on enjoying it. (Lake appears in Tunisia desert.) In other areas of the world, people complain about the rain. They want dryness.

How did the water appear in the middle of the desert, and why?
Science, of course, may soon get to the bottom of this occurrence ...Yet, there never will be a full explanation of how, why, in a desert where bodies of water simply don't exist.

Divine Order.

Correcting and balancing those areas that need to be fixed....and those that need to be left alone...drifting along alone to its own unfolding.

Oops...it's a little off course, there, and there...let's fix it. 
A slight adjustment here... a slight adjustment there.

Do you feel it in your life? Do you trust it to tweak what needs to be tweaked and to let what is moving along just the way it should...alone?

Can you feel...the order...the Divine Order...at work in your life?
Happy Fall!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

In Defense of EGO: The Power of Elimination (Letting Go)

Photo Credit: Cryptik 
Elimination: The Process of Letting Go!

The beauty of nature. The simplicity of nature. The safety of nature, when everything else 
in life falls apart.
Can we take a moment to breathe in the tranquility of the scene above.

Who wants to write this man's story: Is he a spiritual guru? Is he a rich man taking a respite from demanding tasks by vacationing in the Middle East? Or, is he simply a man taking a respite from his daily travails?

We can only wonder. But the truth is the tranquility and peace emanating from this man in desert terrain
 are the goals we seek in our day-today lives: letting go and simply breathing.

We have mountains of concerns surrounding our daily lives: family, careers, finances, relationships,
 politics and short-term and long-term goals.We turn in at night with the bundle of these concerns
 neatly packaged inside our heads and twisted up in the curvature of our physical outline. We wake up every morning, and we pick up our heavy bundle of life's concerns to carry along with us through the
day.. growling before the first sip of coffee, not wanting to smile and say a simple, "Good Morning" to
 people around us... walking with hesitant steps into the day.

Life does carry with it a lot of heavy loads.

So many would tell us to "have faith" and that "everything will work out for the best." 
when troubles come. 

But life in its essence is simple.
Life in its pure state has none of the accoutrements we pick up along the way and carry as heavy 
burdens with us day and night.
So, let me restate what I said above about heavy loads: "Life in itself is self-sustaining." 
[Joel Osteen, the master teacher at Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, once noted that palm trees are able to bend and fold with winds and storms, yet go back to their original form stronger than before. To support this message, Osteen cited, Psalm 92:12: "The righteous shall florish like the palm tree, he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon."] 

Life becomes complicated because of the attachments we form and the accoutrements
we add to it each day. Many people believe that they cannot survive a day without a 
him or her added to their essence and in their presence. Many also believe that life 
is not worth living without all the trappings of success: luxury, plenty and more, 
much more, than enough.

[We add the sauces and spices to life, great for adding flavor, but not
always required. Photo Credit: Rural Spin] 

These are great goals to make a joyous and happy life. But the essence of life itself 
requires  only that we show up each and every day. That's all that's required. 

If we pay attention to showing up and engaging in life and the flow of life, one day, when 
we look keenly we will see that we are also waking up each day  to happiness, joy, and peace.

Of course, we can choose to do as many do and short circuit the process by 
 dropping out of the compeititive lifestyle and enter into a life of constant state of meditation,   
or take breaks and go off into the desert. We also can choose to go off and sit in the middle of a  town square and attract passersby' attention .Then, of course, we would have to worry about police charting us off to jail for loitering. 

How can we then get out of bed each day, without picking up the bundle of accoutrements we 
carry day after day?

There are many good sources of advice.

The Unity organization offers a thoughtful and complete booklet on "Forgiveness."
(Packed in this 50 page volume, "The Freedom of Forgiveness,"  are sage pieces on many achieving peace and joy through forgiveness.)
"We are the authors of what we think and feel"...
..."Forgiveness is no longer needing to 'tell the story.'"
You can obtain a copy of this booklet by calling Unity Customer Service, 1-800-669-0282 in the United States, or writing to http://unity.org. Or by clicking here:
The Freedom of Forgiveness

Joel Osteen Ministries uses Proverb 23:7 (AMP) to offer this advice:
  "For As a Man Thinketh in his heart, so is he" 

"Every morning, you should wake up and picture yourself succeeding; picture yourself healthy and whole; picture yourself and your family not only being blessed, but being a bigger blessing to others. If you’ll keep the right images in front of you and always submit yourself to God with prayer and thanksgiving, you’ll see yourself the way God sees you and experience all that He has in store for you!"
Then, there's Deepak Chopra's Center in Carlsbad, Calif.,(Chopra Center). This
 powerful spiritual center  puts out myriad audio and video works on meditation, 
personal empowerment and expanding consciousness. Without a doubt, these are some 
of the most effective tools for helping you connect to the power within you. 
Practicing forgiveness, visualization, and meditation all contribute to the overall goal of  
making your life a joyful and happy experience. Specifically, though, the 
challenge of Elimination and letting go of unwanted attributes and traits from our lives
 is a moment-by-moment decision. 

We hear things in a moment that we cannot accept as truth about ourselves, we see people
 do things to us that are unacceptable and rude. How do we respond? That's when, according
 to Master Teacher Joel Osteen, we should "Hit the Delete Button." (Joel Osteen: Hit the Delete Button.)
Don't let negative situations and negative, rude people determine your path in life. "Delete." 
Delete what they said, and if possible, delete them, too, from your life. People are  
to say, do and believe only at the level of their consciousness. Don't let them rub off 
their negative views on life onto you. Delete! 

As challenging situations arise, that's when we make a choice to do the best we can, then "let go and let God" handle it. Letting go, in the moment, allows you to look at the issue rationally and do the best you can to resolve it. More importantly,  it does not affect your emotional state and can be dissolved before it builds into a situation that eventually would require forgiveness. Or visualization of peacefulness or meditation.

Before all those techniques, comes the practice of "Letting Go and Letting God." 
Cosmic Consciousness, God, is always present and always at work. Despite
 the negative appearances we may see and experience in our lives and in the world,
 Divine Order still is supreme. We are only one set of people inhabiting the globe in this
 period and time. We must trust that in light of Eternity, Cosmic Consciousness and 
Divine Order are overseeing the big picture.

 We should remember, too, that when something happens over which we seem to have no control: Life is NOT OVER! When we gather our bearings, it is then we must dig in and remember, WHO we are as children of God!

Letting Go is the critical first step: Know this in the moment! Know that your life is just a drop in the bucket of Eternity. There is a much bigger picture at work. Rise higher to get a better view. Then...Let Go!
Next, remember you are a perfect child of God: Remember this. You were made for this season and time...for a specific reason. The way you are in the world is needed and YOU ARE perfect as just you.

                                                Photo Credit: Directtanews.it

With steady practice, maybe, one day, people will look at you, regardless of the setting,  
and wonder like the top picture: who is this person...simply sitting still, at peace and at one
 with all there is...

Who is that woman? 
Who is this man?

Surroundings don't make the person...
All of Life is within YOU! 
Eliminate... Let Go...in every moment the things that do not belong.

One day, you may just give the simple answer as the Buddha (Siddharta) did when asked:
"Who are you?"

"I'm awake."



Personal Authenticity: "To Thine Own Self Be True"...

"To Thine Own Self Be True and it must follow as the night, the day, Thou canst not then be false to ANY man."
William Shakespeare.