Sunday, July 31, 2005

Spiritual Solutions


Happily, spirituality is usually very practical. So, it provides the answers, or at least, guides to the answers, to many of life's everyday problems and challenges. If you follow Love and compassion, you are clearly growing fast, and in the right direction!

But Love and overdependence are incompatible, and cannot long share the same "bed" in the mind. All they want to do is fight, conflict, and engage in other antilibran activities. So, you are especially wise to decide to rid your life, as much as possible, of the unhealthy "stickymind" dependence, and replace it with Love. Too much "Velcromind" diverts both energy and attention, and selfimprovement is postponed, or even neutralized.

Your decision to exist in only the "eternal now" is very spiritually refreshing, and can strengthen and empower you tremendously, to face anything with Power. That is enormously wise, so congratulations on an "inside job" well done!

People are often forced to cultivate a special and deep trust of friends. This is good, as trust is implicit in most, but not all, Love. Why is trust not enfolded in all Love? Because "Love" must be given to all, but it is unwise to give trust to all. The enlightened are not naive fools, and so, do not trust everybody. Unlike Love, trust is like respect:
Both must be earned.

You might be reading too much into Carol's [pseudonym] visit to another state. It is by no means certain that she is capable of true Love, which is unconditional. For that finest quality has been so often eclipsed. It is not, of course, that she cannot allow Love; but she refuses voluntarily and consciously to do so. She seems to live in "survival mode," as if under continuous assault, and that cannot be comfortable! Inside her head is not a nice place! The ultimate "punishment" or "reward" of this life is that we all must "come home" to living within our own minds! That can be the lovely "Garden of Eden" in the heart, or it can be hell!

Human beings are too complex to reduce complex interactions such as Love to mere "blood" or biology. If people try to do this, they end up with several distortions that twist the Love into something else, often something repellant, such as subtle selfishness.

So, upon returning to you, she did not abandon an idyllic "world of Love." For she has as many internal conflicts with her relatives as she does with you. It is her purpose to paint an idealistic ppicture of them in order to make you feel "less than," or guilty. Do not fall for this shallow ruse!

Yes, my friend, you must be careful that the ego does not abuse "self-anallysis" simply to create guilt. Guilt is an unproductive form of fear, and ego can always be recognized because it uses fear. Spirit can be recognized by the presence of cleansing, forgiving and selforgiving Love. So, abandon too much, or too microscopic, a selfanalysis. When you do your best, accept it, and even congratulate yourself. This is not to create arrogance, strengthening ego, but a boost in selfesteem, which is healthy and spiritual. For the Way of Love is not one of continuous selfdemand or humorless "grit your teeth and bear it." It is a path of gentle reminders, gentle improvements, and tender, Lovebased selfcorrections. So, relax and try to allow the Spirit of Love to take over in your heart. Do not demand too much of yourself. Just always do your honest best. For the Spirit lures us with rainbows and moonlight; it does not drive us with bull-whips!

Yes, we all have to carry around, like baggage, the lower or human nature, the part of our mind that is human. Still, it is healthy to bear in mind that this is not our "enemy," but our teacher; so, it is our friend, in the longrun.

Teaching and learning opportunities are always arising in our lives. If we can see them for the "exams" or "lessons" of the school of life, this will grant the detachment necessary to take and pass the tests. The cosmos does not demand that you explain, in detail, your every move or everythought. You do not "owe" this to anyone, unless your deep Mind directs otherwise. You are not a child, and your friend not a strict, controlling teacher demanding your latest "book report" on the biography of your life. You are not obligated by Love to "report" to anyone. Love obligates you to show only kindness and compassion.

At times, these can be expressed by words, whose quality can approach the artistic and poetic. But at times, Love can call upon us NOT to speak or write, or at least, not to over-write. The "kiss" principle applies here-- keep it super simple." So, always speak and write the words of Love, but leave room also for the silence of Love.

It is a great fantasy that words can solve any human problem, if clear, wise, loving, and gentle. But this is only a fine illusion; for words can also complexify an issue, leading to defensiveness on both sides, and to increased misunderstanding. Too often, the result is a "war of words," in which each participant thinks, "I can win this war." But in verbal warfare, as in the monstrous physical war, there are never any winners. The real winner is she who refuses to play this destructive game.

But writing out our thoughts can be very personally therapeutic. Writing a clear letter can also help, even if it is not sent. For it can lead to greater selfunderstanding, and that is spiritual progress.

Words are no longer "solutions" when they become the "problem." So, if words create rather than resist confusion, misunderstanding, or negative feelings, they are not the right tool. All human problems are simply not amenable to word-solutions. That is simply an ideal, not always a reality. So, there is an appropriate time for words, and one for silence.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Science Under Seige

Read this excellent article by Tim Montague.
An ill wind is gusting through the halls of science these days: faked research, suppression of unwelcome results, corruption of science advisory panels, university research falling under the influence of corporate sponsors, and many other conflicts of interest. More...

On this issue, many materials are available at the The Union of Concerned Scientists site.

Bucks, Crooks, and Honesty


When greed becomes the only evaluative criterion of measuring or interpreting data, the sick and slick misuse of science becomes inevitable. The current administration favors corporate profits over human life. If this is doubted, just check with any of the friends or relatives of the 112,000 Iraqis murdered, or of the 1,800 American girls and boys fed into the corporate meatgrinder of the warmachine.

The gov is so hellishly greedy that it has not hesitated to reverse and neutralize laws necessary to preserve life itself. It is so foolish, so blinded by greed, that it will sacrifice not only our own lives, the lives of American girls and boys, the lives of others, but all life forever on earth. For uncontrolled pollution can make all future life on planet earth impossible. But, they claim, it is worth it, for a few immediate bucks in obscene profits. The gov is owned, in real ways, by many corporations. Isn't that the very definition of "fascism"?

Pres bush is in the back pocket of more corporations, and of more corporate execs, than he can count. (The fact that he can count to only six does not help!:) We need to use every aspect of the voice of the people to counteract the mindless and boundless greed that has taken over the minds of leaders. All this has been accomplished by corporate money. Bribery is pervasive, although it has other, nicer, names. A gove run by money without morality is a danger to every one of its citizens. It also poses a danger to the planet itself.

Money supports every form of immorality and obscenity. As the Christian mystic reminds us, "The Love of money is a root of all evil." And "all evil" has sprouted in the dark, evil minds of greedy men and women who have taken illicit control of the gov, and want the entire world!

It should be especially awakening to realize that science, and scientific research and its results, are compromised, altered, faked, and bigoted by economic considerations. Without good, detached, reliable science, all the laws of the past thirty years regarding ecology would never have been passed. Moneymongers, like warmongers, want to return the world to the feudal systems of the prescientific world. Why? Because an ignorant populace is easier to control. Hitler and other idiots historically abused or distorted "science" to support racial and other bigotries. Today's American corporations are walking in the very footsteps of the nazis, and so are leaders of the gov. No one can believe the gov anymore, and no one can respect a gov that cannot be believed. We have been lied to once too often. The gov has earned only our firm distrust.

A man who will do anything to gain money or power cannot be trusted with anything. For everything is consumed by the nightmarish dragon of his greed. He has no moral fiber, and has lost all moral strength and viability. When he talks, people laugh-- and cry-- but never listen. He has lost all credibility.

Liars and fakes have well earned the mistrust of everyone. The most corrupt are the strongest, at least, in our society. Their goal is to rule, not just the world, but the entire cosmos; they want science itself to bend to their will. And if it does not, they will pretend that it does, and simply fake the science. When millions of bucks are involved, the most honorable scientist can discover that she has a price, that she can be "bought." Buying science, like buying scientists, is a dangerous occupation, and leads to lies that are lethal to children, older people, sick people, and, in the end, to every one of us. No one can escape bad science, for corporate and national policies can arise from it. And this is doubly so if the leaders are already corrupt, have proved that they can be bought or controlled if the price is right.

Those who choose not to regulate their own behavior must be regulated forcefully by society. This applies as much to the corporate or political fool as it does to the dangerous rapist. We must form balanced and compassionate, moderate laws, and then, enforce them. No criminal can ever be trusted to regulate her/his own behavior. Criminals by nature and definition are harmful to others because they do not give a care about them, even if they are rulers of entire countries. Criminals who lie openly, and who build political careers on lies, are more dangerous than anyone else. Only exposing publicly their actions, and expressing our disgust with them, will make any kind of positive changes in our society.

We dare not be neutral about such antihuman actions and policies. And we must, as reasonable, compassionate people, never find ourselves mired in the same moral quicksand as the criminals. We must not waste timenergy defending them, but must expose them and their lies and other corruptions, unmasking greed. For, like fungus, greed thrives in darkness, and grows in dark hearts. Sunlight is the ultimate sanitizer.

World as Dream


The idea of "world as dream" goes way back to the first among mystics, the Hindu and pre-Hindu culture of about four thousand years ago. But if we think that this has anything at all to do with "control," we have seriously misunderstood the entirety of the mystical Way. It has nothing at all to do with control, and nothing to do with "tricks," such as the violation of the laws of science or nature.

One goal of the mystic is completely to let go of all control, and all desire to control, and thus, to become a clear empty vessel, or instrument, for the cosmic Mind, the Dreamer of the cosmos. This is what the state of stillness, introduced to the mystic in meditation, is all about.

An illustration of this is the computer keyboard-- an apt miniparable because one sits so often on the lap, as now.:) If a keyboard had its own message or words that it "wanted" to write, it would be useless. You could not even use it, for, while you wanted too key in your thoughts, it would be over-riding your words with words of its own. It would be like the person who, in spiritual regression or illness, wants to cultivate control, or the desire to control. The mystic sees this as a serious spiritual illness, for it stands as an obstacle to, and resists, relaxation into the Flow of purest, deepest Mind.

What, then, is the desire to control? It can be expressed as fear (lack of faith), which is always spiritually unhealthy, or as overdeveloped hyperegotism, in which we believe that "If I don't do it, no one will." In both cases, we distrust the Power behind the cosmos; we distrust and mistrust God, the Dreamer at the Core of all Mind. We actually arrogate unto ourselves the mission of controlling the cosmos, and actually want to do this, so great is our fear. But we possess neither the Power nor the wisdom nor the right to do this. It is not in our "job-description." It is comparable to an ant with the delusion that it controls a large freight-train, or to an ameba believing that it controls a large corporation.

The mystic lives in the same "scary" cosmos as everyone else, of course, but she makes a startling choice: Faith. She decides to relax and allow the deepest Mind to regulate and control everything, as It does anyway. It does not need our "permission" to guide the cosmos. We simply need to awaken to the fact (reality) that It already does so. This brings us to the state of deep trust, totally relaxed, comparable to the nursing infant's trust of its mother, as Jesus illustrated. In time, it can bring us to the peak of the mystical life-- the life of true naturalness, worry-free and fear-free existence, as again illustrated by Jesus in his use of birds and flowers as models.

When we relax and "flogo," or cooperate with this Mindpower, we change only ourselves, creating great inner harmony and tranquility. We also stop expending (wasting) huge quantities of forcenergy, in trying to force, control, or bend the cosmos. As Jesus reminds us, you cannot change a single hair from black to white, or vice-versa. Again, this is not your job. The call to mysticism is not a call to magic.

Knowing the nature of cosmos as dream does not allow the mystic to "create" or even to experience "miracles," as can be quite common in nightdreams. No, she cannot fly or walk through walls. Even some of the most stunning legends, including those of Jesus, have likely been exaggerated and expanded over the centuries; and they were very probably allegorical, to begin with. So, although Jesus makes a great model for the mystic, he is generally regarded, realistically, as a model of peace and Love, not a practical model of some kind of trivial trickster or magician-- as the average person so often misinterprets him.

Why? Because the crowd is impressed by Power and control, the mystic by only Love, goodness, and tranquility. So, here, the mystic is more "practical" than average.

While you can fly in your nightdreams, for example, it is also possible to dream that you cannot fly. But the fact that you cannot fly in a dream does not "disprove" that it is a dream. Similarly, there is no way to "disprove" that everyday life is also a dream.

But this negative also does not prove that life is a dream. Still, everyone, including all who think the world absolutely "real," knows that life is a series of events within the Mind. So, the mystic simply logically extrapolates from this selfevident fact to say that the entire cosmos is a similar Mindevent, or "dream."

But the waking world is much more complex, in some ways, than a nightdream. For it is collective or consensual. It arises from a much deeper level of Mind-- the collective. This, in turn, is rooted in the deepest, called "Coremind," "Lovemind," "Dreamer," "Spirit," or "God." A mystical name for God is "Creator," but also, "Dreamer." (The two are synonymous.) Over the centuries, human beings have worked very carefully and diligently, in the minutest detail, to create the "scientific paradigm." This has set some mind-limits on the dream that are greater than anyone's personal or individual will. This has created the immense, vast, gigantic force called "scientific consensuality." We can sometimes step outside of its boundaries, but only when and if that is the will of the Coremind. And this can occur only within a very rare state of Mind.

In the "world as dream" paradigm, the mystic can easily believe in "miracles," so her world is much more flexible, or Mind-responsive, than the world of "separate matter," or that of the materialist. Although miracles are exceedingly rare, in the "world as dream" paradigm, anything at all is possible!

What "practical" good is the realization of the world as dream? If you are seeking control, the news is not good. As noted, it does not increase personal control by a nanoparticle. But if you are seeking understanding, it changes the very origin and nature of reality. For the mystic realizes that all "Reality" is Mind. In other words, God is Mind is Reality. (The ancients used the word "truth" to mean "reality.") So, Mind is all that exists. It is forever. Being part of It, you are also forever. Since It is also Love, then Love regulates the entire cosmos through karma, forgiveness, and other principles.

Thus, the "world as dream" is a philosophic tool for understanding, not an instrument of control. A practical example occurred in this life in 1997, when the author's home was flooded. Although the crisis could have taken over the entire mind and thrown one into panic-- the response of the lower nature of ignorance-- it was realized at the time, "None of this is real." That became a source of greater Power and endurance. It led to "transcendence," a state of great tranquility that was literally "above" the fray and chaos. In this state, the mind can remain relatively untroubled during even crises. So, the "world as dream" paradigm serves as a psychological and practical, as well as a philosophic and abstract, tool in the mystic's "interior toolkit."

It leads to the realization (awakening to) the fact that only Mind, only Lovemind, is real. This reinforces trust (faith) in that Lovemind, which increases tranquility and personal Love for others.

Is the "world as dream" paradigm necessary for enlightenment? Yes, for it represents Reality. But is it necessary for the practice of Love? Not at all. So, despite the fact that all masters, teachers, sages, and luminnaries have accepted this paradigm as an alternative to dead and dull materialism, it is not necessary for you to believe it to live the fullest, richest practical life. Although it explains a wide spectrum of philosophic and moral issues, it is possible to love even in its absence. This is what might be called "ignorant goodness." God calls all people, even the ignorant, to Love. And that is very good indeed, for we are all ignorant-- some simply more, and some less.

As we do the personal dance with the cosmos, any tool that aids in the discovery of tranquility and Love is welcome. So, the explanation of "world as dream" is welcomed by the enlightened as a refreshing and liberating realization.



Spirituality can exist with or without visualization. And visualization might or might not be "spiritual."

What is visualization? It is the creation of imaginary pictures in the mind. It is similar to, but not as deep, or as clear, as dreaming. But, unlike dreaming, visualization occurs while you are fully awake, although it is sometimes used in deeper states of meditation.

Many believe that visualization changes the "outer" world, but this is the product of desperation, fear, and wishful thinking. In psychology, this is called "magical thinking," and most normal adults outgrow it by about age six or seven. It is the illogical belief that your thoughts are extremely powerful-- strong enough to manifest in the consensual world.

But imagine what our world would be like if this were true. Every nightmare of every person would be crawling on the streets, and our planet would soon become one great living nightmare. Happily, even very powerful thoughts (such as those of nightmares) have little or no effect on the world, and remain safely within the mind that created them.

Does visualization affect, control, change, or regulate the outer world of matter? No, there are no good metaphysical or spiritual reasons to believe so, or any scientific evidence at all. Take a common and very simple example: You could visualize a change in the color of your hair. You could visualize this for years, and the mere act of visualization would not change the color of a single hair on your own head.

This is proved by hypochondriacs. These are people who visualize diseases and disorders within themselves due to mental illness. With all their might and power, they might be utterly and firmly convinced that they have cancer. Yet, despite many contiguous and consistent years of nonstop practices of negative visualization, they are often found to be cancer-free.

This does not deny the fact that the mind can have enormous effects on the body. But it does deny that the conscious mind is in control of all somatic (bodily) processes.

But despite its real limitations, visualization can be useful. Visualization is useful in the same way that fantasy-therapy can be helpful: It can aid the mind in crystallizing, or getting clear, a dream or idea. Because it can be a lot of fun, it can also serve to ease the tensions and anxieties of the mind. So, although visualization has its rightful and appropriate place, to consider it powerful enough to change the world is regressive, primitive, and unadvanced "magical thinking."

A specific use of visualization is in chromatology, or color-healing. If you want to ease tension or stress in your body or mind, you can visualize a blue light in the area being treated, in yourself or another. On the other hand, if an area of body or mind needs energy, you can best send it psychic force by strongly visualizing a bright orange or red light.

Using visualization in this way is to serve others. Using it for personal gain often arises from, or leads to, increased greed-- also a form of fear, and based in fear.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Dangerous Dishonest Men in Charge

Dearest Friends of the Heart,

Mick Gallagher forwarded this thoughtprovoking article to us, and we felt that we would like to share its important truths. Politicians have proved, beyond the shadow of any reasonable doubt, that they will, in effect, "kill" (or put in danger of death) people for political gain. Iraq has already proved this, as bush et al have murdered 112,000 Iraqis. But they're "just foreigners," and don't really matter much to Americans. But Plame was an American, and a part of national security, at that. Yes, they also proved that personal power and greed outweigh national security. This writer is tougher than most, but the core of his truth can hardly be denied. Happy and interesting reading!

Public Catching On To Dirty Deeds, by Bill Gallagher (July 19, 2005)
Lying and denying, kicking and screaming, the Busheviks are defending comrade Karl Rove from the enemies of the state who are attacking him. We now have the "smoking gun" evidence that Rove was involved in the sordid scheme to "out" CIA officer Valerie Plame.

Retribution, a quintessential Rove political weapon, brought him to expose Plame and risk national security in the process to get back at her husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, for telling the truth about George W. Bush's phony claims that Saddam Hussein was shopping for enriched uranium. Wilson debunked the bogus story that Iraq was seeking the nuclear material in Niger. That was a body blow for the Busheviks, who had worked so diligently to "fix" intelligence and build the lies to justify the invasion of Iraq.

A few weeks ago, when Rove claimed liberals coddled terrorists and wanted to provide them "therapy," I offered a few thoughts about the deputy White House chief of staff, the president's "brain," and designer of his political career.

I wrote, "Karl Rove is the most vile, despicable, duplicitous, power-addicted, warmongering, lying neo-fascist in the administration, save Dick Cheney and the man who lets them run the government for him."

Yes, I know. I am prone to benevolence and understatement.

Additionally, Rove is a treasonous coward, the most manipulative and cynical political operative since Rasputin. He has brought his political venereal disease to public life and Rove's clap has infected a large segment of the once-respectable Republican Party. He has mainstreamed and brought to national practice his ruthless partisanship, grand diversions and deceptions and, above all, his model of winning elections by using any means necessary to destroy opponents.

The fellow travelers defending his treachery share Rove's shame. For two years, the White House denied he played any role in the plot to attack Joe Wilson by exposing his wife's work, calling suggestions of Rove's involvement "totally ridiculous." Now, with even Rove admitting his involvement, his apologists are defending his treason.

A Wall Street Journal editorial calls the disclosure of the identity of a covert CIA officer a "pseudo-scandal" and says that Rove "deserves a prize" for being a "whistleblower."

On the Fox News Channel, the American Pravda and White House news agency, blabbing-head John Gibson said Rove should be given a "medal" and that he was glad someone finally outed Valerie Plame. The Republican spin was that Rove was only trying to help reporters get the story straight. Had anyone in the Clinton administration done what Rove has admitted to, these same people would be calling for the death penalty. Their hypocrisy is boundless.

The Rip Van Winkles in the White House press corps finally woke up and started calling the Busheviks just what they are -- shameless liars who will deny the truth with the conviction of flat-earthers.

The pressure of having his lies exposed and having to lie some more is clearly taking a toll on White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan. He looks like a just-goosed Pillsbury doughboy.

As the reporters grilled him, you know McClellan was thinking "God, where is Jeff Gannon when I really need him?"

Gannon, whose real name is James Guckert, was the fake reporter McClellan and Karl Rove provided White House press credentials to so he could repeat their talking points, pretending he was asking serious questions. Guckert's night job was as a homosexual prostitute, an apt complement to the services he provided the Busheviks during the day.

McClellan repeated George W. Bush's faith in Rove, a man the president often calls "turd blossom." That's Bush's tribute to his conviction Rove has the uncanny ability to make something sweet and pretty spring from something not so pleasant.

"Any individual who works here at the White House has the confidence of the president. They wouldn't be working at the White House if they didn't have the president's confidence," McClellan said.

NBC's David Gregory and ABC's Terry Moran stripped McClellan of any credibility and respectability, pointing to his litany of lies in claiming Rove had "no involvement" in discussing Wilson and his wife with reporters.

But many others in the corporate media are just where Rove wants them -- focusing on the narrow question of his criminality. Far more significant is Rove's admitted role in chatting with reporters about Wilson and Plame's relationship, and his clear intent to discredit Wilson and his findings about the Niger hoax.

This whole scandal is about one of the biggest lies the Busheviks used to justify the invasion of Iraq. Without the enriched uranium story, Bush couldn't scare the hell out of people in a State of the Union address, Condoleezza Rice couldn't make her ominous "mushroom cloud" references, Dick Cheney couldn't recite his solemn claim that Saddam Hussein was "actively pursuing nuclear weapons," Colin Powell's speech to the UN would have had more holes in it, and Donald Rumsfeld's inflated assessments of Iraq's weapons would have burst earlier.

These slimeballs are not really Republicans and they are hardly conservatives. They are Busheviks, first and foremost. They don't care about the virtues of our republic or any kind of principle. They don't care what their serial lying does to public discourse. Power alone drives them. Karl Rove will do anything to seize and preserve power. That is his opium, and he used another addicted soul to feed his habit.

Rove's most sinister deed, so far, is the creation of George W. Bush as a marketable and successful political product. Rove made this turd blossom and the results for our nation and the world are catastrophic.

Rove saw potential in Bush his own family didn't. Here was a drunk, later dry-drunk, untreated alcoholic, who failed in nearly every business he touched. On several occasions, his daddy's pals and Saudi influence-peddlers had to rescue George W.'s oil ventures from the jaws of bankruptcy.

Then Bush pulled a few insider-trading tricks to improve his cash flow. A special prosecutor, spending years and $70 million to investigate George W.'s business dealings as Ken Starr did with Bill Clinton's, would have found some real dirty deals. George W. didn't have to put up a dime of his own money when his daddy's pals cut him a share of the Texas Rangers baseball team. That also gave Bush a high-profile position. The corporate welfare the City of Arlington, Texas, provided enriched the team and eventually made Bush a multimillionaire in his own right.

Rove saw his opportunity and groomed Bush to run for Texas governor against Democratic incumbent Ann Richards. Suddenly, Richards was rumored to be a lesbian.

Bush was elected and this occasionally affable but intellectually lazy mediocrity was presidential material. Rove had his eye on the White House.

First, they had to destroy John McCain's candidacy, and in the South Carolina primary, rumors surfaced that McCain had fathered an illegitimate, biracial child.

You could smell the foul stench of "turd blossom" in South Carolina.

Rove and George W. Bush are actually not ideologues. They really don't believe in anything but power and money. They have created a political empire based on a seamless garment of greed. Greed feeds the power. Power feeds the greed.

Karl Rove may be in trouble, but even if he has to vacate his White House office, he'll still have Bush's ear and he'll still be able to spin out his lies.

Bush's personal credibility is plunging. An NBC/Wall Street Journal poll shows the percentage of people who believe Bush is "honest and straightforward" fell to 41 percent from 50 percent in January.

But why has it taken so long for the American people to catch on? And why do so many still buy the big lies?

Karl Rove has that all figured out and that's why he's vital for George W. Bush. Their malignant symbiosis will endure, and more decent people will suffer and die as a result.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Letter from Brad, A Quaker


I am one of the Type one Quakers, as described [in the previous issue of the uld]. Let me clarify some points. We call our gathering places and worship "meeting houses" and "meetings" not "churches." (Type two, or programmed, Quakers call their building and worship "church.") Many of the unprogrammed Quakers (Type one) belong to yearly meetings (a grouping of other local meetings called "monthly meetings."). And there is one larger grouping, namely Friends General Conference, though other unprogrammed Friends (Quakers) are called "Conservative" and others yet are independent at the monthly or yearly meeting level.

The worship process described in the note is generally correct; however, there is much more relational interaction in a sense of a "beloved community" going on. And Friends are often described as pra[c]tical mystics, because we take our experience of the divine into our daily living, often seen by others in our peace and social justice work.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

World as "Mirror"


The statement that the world is "made up of your own mindstuff" could be taken to imply that the cosmos contains only those items that we consciously create. It could imply that we personally are the dreamers of our world.

Mysticism takes a deeper view: The world is dreamed up by the great Dreamermind, or Creatormind, a part or facet of the Coremind, Lovemind, or God. True, we are the instruments through which our world is dreamed into being, but we are not, as "separate" minds, the dreamers. We share a world because the level of Mind that dreams it up is collective. Again, uncertainty arises when the conscious mind is confused with the Unconscious. We must be aware of this, for people, including "teachers," are always making this important error.

The world (cosmos) is unconsciously dreamed into being, and then, we consciously respond to it. So most items in our world are not personal. They arise from a collective source, deep in Mind. Even the most negative things and people are here to challenge us. But the cosmos is not a mirror of the conscious mind. So, when we "see" a murderer, that does not mean that a part of our personal mind wants to murder. Nor does it imply even that we are potential killers.

We all see, or hear of, many atrocities every day. They are mirrors of Mind, but not of our personal minds. What is personal about the dream is not the thematic structure of the entire dream, but only karmic components from the past, including challenges. All the evil of the world is not within you, even potentially; but it is within the Mind, at a collective level.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

The Conscious Mind's Limits


The message of Vernon Howard is that the ego-mind is God. It is limitless in power. It can, if you are "psyched" enough, do anything, he claims.

I read several of his books, way back in the 1970's. He enthusiastically yearned to believe that the conscious mind (ego) was all-powerful. Many metaphysical schools make this same error, including Christian Science and many Unity groups. Science of Mind has tried largely to shake off some of this "egomind is God" misunderstanding, and partially return to the Way of true mysticism.

Here's the difference: In the genuine path, you trust the Mind behind the cosmos to do always what is right. So, you drop all worry, anxiety, and tense concern for "making things better" through your own willpower. This ancient Way is intercultural, but parts of it are represented most lucidly by Taoism, which says, "Try to fix the universe, and you will surely ruin it." It is the perfect faith that we need DO NOTHING, EXCEPT respond in Love to every person and event. Spiritual philosophers call this the "Supreme Way." It is living like the flowers and the birds, finding natural resonance with the cosmos, harmony within ourselves, and freedom from the ever nit-picking, manipulating ego. It is return to nature, to Eden, to satisfaction, to full relaxation. ("Perfect faith is perfect relaxation." We "let go" of everything.) Full liberation is impossible as long as a trace of the ego-will to "repair" things continues in the psyche.

The exception to this perfectly restful life arises, of course, when Love tells us to do something. We do not become dead when Love is awakened within us. Indeed, we become more alive -- more active-- than ever! But now, we can act to improve the world, to alleviate suffering and help living creatures, without worry, fear, or anticipation of "failure." For we are no longer the ones aiding personally, but have become the hands and Mind of Love.

It is not the "job-description" of the conscious mind to use "magic" to alter the cosmos. The conscious mind is not strong enough, does not have enough power, to change the external cosmos -- as all of these desperate, hopeful, starry-eyed philosophies claim. If you believe that you can do anything at all with the conscious mind, just try to change the color of one hair on your own head! Then, you will see the limitations of the consciousmind.

Of course, we all want to aid those who are ill, who need our support, compassion, and assistance. But Love is the only healing agent in the cosmos. Every act of Love is an act of healing. You heal a person much more by loving her than by a dozen "tricks" of words or altered thought-patterns. So, again, the cosmos does not challenge us to become "prayer-magicians," but, as always, to love sincerely and tenderly.

The "ego is God" is a very subtle, seductive, and attractive concept. It means, most simply, that you can get, or do, whatever you want, whenever you want. (It is a form of ego-idolatry.) How? By intense concentration, and by changing your thought-habits and -patterns.

Agreed that positive thinking is much more harmonious with Love than negative, still, we become delusional if we buy into the desperate idea that our personal thoughts rule the world! In psychology, this is a disorder known as "grandiosity," and operates through "Narcissism" or extreme egotism. So, it is not a neutral path; it is clearly antispiritual.

Jesus said it very simply: "One thing is necessary." Metaphysicists are always saying that you must do this and that, and they have an entire list of things that YOU must DO. But if you have "faith" in the God running the cosmos, you can relax all your controls, and attempts at control, and do your "one thing" superbly. That is, of course, Love.

The "conscious mind is infinitely powerful" idea has one major flaw: It does not work. It is very exciting on paper, and thousands wax enthusiastic about it! It is easy to get caught up in the "anything is possible for me" mindset. It is extremely attractive, especially to the fearnature. (I used to be a true believer.)

But let's take a case from reality: A hypochondriac, year after year after year, convinces himself that he has cancer. He reads many books on the subject, and becomes an expert. It is all that he thinks about, all that he believes in. He is utterly convinced. He goes to the hospital after having suffered, every day and night, for fifty years, and is found to be absolutely free of the disease. This scenario has actually occurred, several times.

Now, this man, although negatively, has done precisely what the "ego is God" people all say that we should, and must, do. But he has had no effect on his own biofunction or biostructure. Why? Because, although biofunctions can be affected by will, in bodymind activities, they also follow the greater and more powerful laws of biochemistry and karma. And the conscious mind, committed though it might be, and utterly convinced, does not have the power to overcome those overriding laws.

Why? Because those laws exist at a very deep level of Mind, called the "collective Unconscious," and it easily overrides the merely conscious (aware) mind.

Another small example: A young girl truly believes that there is a "monster" in her closet. She thinks that she hears it, sees it, even smells it. She believes this with all her heart, for over thirteen years. But there is not, has never been, a "monster." Why? Because all her passionate and total belief, her utter conviction, reinforced even by powerful fear, did not create the power necessary to change reality.

More examples could easily be given.

But why are people so terrified to believe that the conscious mind is so weak? Because they fear to trust. They do not trust the Fathermind/Mothermind/Lovemind of the cosmos, the cosmic Mind, to do what is right for them. They think that they know better. And the "bad things" that could happen to them scare them silly.

The mystic embraces the world as she finds it. She is the ultimate "realist." She refuses to get caught in reality-denial and indulge in fantasies. She embraces reality ("truth") as it is. She does not waste timenergy in reality-denial. She is convinced that Godmind is perfect, and that her ideas of "the way things should be" cannot be superior. For the Dreamermind that dreams up the cosmos knows billions of factors, karmic and otherwise, about which we know nothing. And it takes so much megadata to create a world that is "perfect" for the average person, for it involves centuries of karma.

That "perfect" world is not always fun. Taking tests at school was not always fun. Having fun is a viable reason for living, but not the only reason. We also live to learn, and must take tests or exams to grow. Sometimes, we must learn things that we do not want to learn. But this course is "perfect" for our soul's learning; and this learning is infinitely more important than "good times." That is the real reason why we are born on earth. To try to avoid "bad" things is running away from the classroom! And that is no way to graduate!

Wednesday, July 06, 2005



There are two kinds of Quaker: What I will call "Type 1" is the original, unorganized type. The other more closely resembles other forms of Protestantism. For me, Type 1, the unorganized, is preferable. They are not so "hung up" on structure, discipline, church-organization and administration as are the Type 2 Quakers. They are much simpler in structure, and much more spontaneous.

If anyone is seeking a more "traditional" group, with a strongly mystical flavor, this is it! In their gatherings, they often just sit quietly, awaiting messages from the Holy Spirit, which can come to anyone, male or female, at any time. (The second type is bigger on prepared sermons and "Bible-study," etc.)

But both types trace their origins to the mystic George Fox in the seventeenth century. Type 2 has evolved considerabbly from the original roots, and might have even doctrines. But the only teaching of Group 1 is "the interior Light," which you must personally consult with problems and questions about truth. This type of Quaker might well belong to a loose confederation of other churches, but each church is essentially independent, as is each person. A number of good books have been written about the Quakers, available in most libraries.

If you are looking for people with whom to share the truth (reality), you would greatly enrich your experience by checking out the Type 1 Quakers!



Meditation, in the history of mysticism, has been called "interior prayer." For it connects us with the cosmic Mind, the deepest level of the Unconscious. This galaxy of Love, beauty, intelligence, and wisdom exists deeply within your mind. You might recognize that it is Reality, Spirit, or God.

The mystic's God has never been above the clouds, or in outer space. Her God is Love, and exists in inner space.

The mystic worships Love, for "God is Love." So, in her sacred moments, she turns inward, not outward. She has fully outgrown the childish illusion of the "big daddy in the sky."

Ideally, in time, the practice of meditation becomes more and more continuous. Periods of "meditation" (immersion in deepest Mind) become longer and more frequent, until she arrives at a point where she continuously, unbrokenly, seamlessly lives "in God." This is the fulfillment of the words of the mystic Paul, "Pray without ceasing." (1 Thes 5:17)

Of course, her unconscious contact with the great Mind is continuous. It is seamless, but she does not always recognize it every minute of every day. When she reaches the point or level in consciousness where she is completely submerged in the cosmic Mind, however, her recognition of her Unity is also, equally, unbroken. This is the reason that "individual minds" were created or "emanated" by the Creator from Her/His own Mind.

"I come from the Father, and return there," said Jesus. This statement was not just about his death, but his Way of life.

To come back to oneness with the cosmic Mind within, the mystic must work to eliminate much "static." This is caused by the over-activity, which is constant, of her ego-mind (the ordinary, everyday mind that is always thinking and talking to itself).

To quiet this "blah-blah" mind, with all its noise and confusion, many mystics choose a "mantra." This is a simple phrase that is repeated over and over, not as a thought, but to replace ordinary thought. Used often enough, it brings the mystic to a "thoughtfree" condition in which she can be used by the Lovemind. I often recommend a four-syllable phrase, but it can be of any reasonably short length.

An example is a computerkeyboard. If the keyboard had its own agenda, if it had messages that it wanted to write onscreen, it would be useless. You could not use it, since it would be already "using itself" to write its messages, so that yours could not "get through."

Our minds are like that keyboard. If they are continuously glutted, filled to the brim, with our own thoughts, desires, and "selftalk," as psychology calls it, there is no room for God (Lovemind) to express. We behave like autonomous keyboards writing (speaking or thinking) their own messages. So, we are essentially useless to the great Communicator of Love.

Meditation is ultimate humility. It is saying "Yes" to God, and it is also saying, "My personal thoughts are so nanoscopic and useless when compared to Thine expressions that I'm going to eliminate the personal so that Thou mayest replace them with Thy thoughts of Love, beauty, intelligence, and wisdom."

In time, the mystic finds deep inner wisdom inside her head. She knows things with absolute certainty, although she avoids dogmatism. She knows some things that she has not learned. Her personality is also revised into one of deepest tranquility, bliss-joy, and Love-compassion. Again, the mystic Paul identified the "fruits of the Spirit" as, "Love, joy, and peace" among others. (Ga 5:22)

The mystic unites with this higher Mind within, and good, loving, compassionate activities are produced by nature--her nature--like fruit is produced by a tree. Goodness does not have to be forced or intellectually manufactured; nor does wisdom. Both are just there, inside her.

It is often said that meditation has no goal. It is true that one should enter the state of meditation without shorterm goals. But the longterm goal of mindclearing is to allow Love to "take over" the mind, bringing joy, satisfaction, and contentment. This core-goal of the enlightened being is impossible without meditation or "prayer." When mystics spoke of the "prayer of silence," they were speaking of meditation. In ordinary prayer, you talk, and God listens. In meditative prayer, God talks and we listen.

Every true form of spirituality has included at least one form of meditation. This is as true of the Love-tradition of Christianity or Judaism as it is of Buddhism.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Subjectivity and Objectivity


The roles of subjective and objective views are balanced in the spiritual life. The most that we can positively know, through personal feelings and observations, is all "subjective." The "objective" is reducible to a consensus of subjective views of the cosmos.

The mystical view of the cosmos is that it is a world of Mind. In this sense, every experience is ultimately subjective. But, with the reality of the collective Unconscious, human beings have developed an "objective" collection of views and data over the millennia, which we call the "scientific" perspective.

Some simply deny and drop this, in the metaphysical community, as if it has no value. The mystic avoids such extremisms. When she examines her philosophy, she makes absolutely certain that it is in harmony with two factors: Love and reason. The second is largely "objective." She does not build a perspective in mental or subjective isolation. Instead, it is her Way to "compare notes" with others, so that she does not get lost in a purely subjective understanding of the cosmos.

This objectification of spirituality keeps her on the moderate course. It prevents her from falling into falsehoods or delusional, or attractive, dreams.

The Greek word aleithia means both "truth" and "reality." The mystic seeks truth, and emphasizes truth. For this reason, she does not adopt every cockeyed scheme that comes along. She defends the right to withold judgment about any number of concepts, some of which are very popular among "new age" or "metaphysical" types.

As an example, people are always convincing themselves that they are "channeling" other (often higher) extraterrestrial or extradimensional beings. Many mystics do not buy into this pop "pneumobabble." Why? Because there is not a shred or particle of objective evidence that anything real is occuring. There is no good evidence that these "channelers" are not simply delusional. This is a perfect example of the imbalance and extremism that can occur when your spirituality becomes only subjective, when you completely abandon objectivity.

The mystic is an ultimate realist. She is on the opposite end of the spectrum from wishful fantasizers or dreamers. She has, and respects, dreams, of course, but, in the construction of her philosophy, wants to create as solid a core of objectivity as possible. The use of Love and reason as her criteria constitutes an analog, for the mystic, of the "scientific method."

In science, as in metaphysics, historically, some absurd ideas were held to be "truth." But because it uses replicable experimentation and clear observation as its criteria, science is better at explaining many natural processes than is metaphysics, which is both freer and more speculative.

So, the mystic also avoids the other extreme of using only "objectivity" as the basis of her thinking. For this leads, at the present primitive state of our science, to only dead-end materialism. (Science is not yet mature enough to explore and explain the great mysteries of Mind and spirituality.)

So, caught in her own subjective cosmos, the mystic nevertheless respects and consults objective views before embracing an idea or concept, even though she is not dominated by the "objectivity" of a view.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Petition Senators to Protect Our Rights

Hi, friends of the heart,

As you probably heard, Sandra Day O'Connor just resigned from the Supreme Court. This is an extremely important time for our senators to hear from us. They need to know that we are counting on them to stand up to President Bush and protect our rights -- because with a moderate like O'Connor stepping down and a far-right like Bush making the nomination, well, the stakes couldn't be higher. The Terri Schiavo tragedy showed us all just how far these people are willing to go.

MoveOn PAC has already started an emergency petition, and we're looking to get 250,000 signatures and comments to the Senate before Tuesday -- which is when rumor has it Bush will announce his nomination.

I hope you can take a minute to join me in signing this petition, so our senators know that, in what might be the fight of our lives, we need them to do what it takes to protect our rights.


Petition for Consensus Judge


Dear Friends of the Heart,

Please sign the petition urging President Bush to nominate a consensus candidate that will unite and not divide Americans. Our nation has been polarized, and we have gone on record urging a different direction, but we will be prepared to fight if necessary.

Please forward this petition to five of your friends and family.

If you would like to contribute to our efforts, please click here: