Truth is the “Sweet Spot” we hit on a moving target!

Lierre Kieth, (author of The Vegetarian Myth), had a peek moment when she began critically examining mounting evidence against vegetarianism.  Having been a vegan for 20 years, this was a radical change.

I was accumulating information that fit into my belief system about how life is. Every time I got information that didn’t fit in, I set that aside; so I ended up with gaps in my consciousness. … One of the things about being a vegan is it is not about what you eat, it’s about who you are, and that makes it really hard to examine new information… it is a threat to who you are…

Listening to her inspired me to critically look at how we decide what is true and how we regulate our lives by what we believe to be true. When we adopt a certain set of “truisms” we could call it a belief system, especially if a group of people hold the same opinions. One of the things about a belief system is that is puts a context in our mind about who we think we are. This can give a sense of identity, security, comfort and community in knowing we are correct in our thoughts and hopefully our actions.

The problem with this kind of comfortable arrangement is that it tends to deter some of us from examining  other belief systems and new  information. When these paradigms are different from what we believe to be true we may decide to discard it as not true and to ignore new information.

On the other hand, with more and more information and new thought we may wonder if what we believe is actually “the truth”.  This may lead us to ask; can there be different truths depending on circumstances? This type of questioning can create in us a kind of spiritual crisis; in some cases it threatens who we believe we are. It may require that we make radical changes in our thinking and in turn how we are on our world in order to find that inner balance with our true self.

Should you consider these questions, you may start to recapitulate and examine how you think about things.  You may ask yourself “How did I come to this assumption of what I believe to be true?”

As humans we naturally like to categorize things and store knowledge in a certain way, to form what we conceive to be true.  We use already known facts to bring together and form new and innovative thought.  Most of us can say that we have a memory and the ability to retrieve information; we can come to a synthesis of that information and build new concepts based on what we have learned.

What if the stored information was relevant at the time but it isn’t as relevant now. Could we say that the paradigm of our reality has shifted? Or to put it more clearly, “What was the context of our awareness when we decided that was true? How has it changed?”

For a specific random example;
I might ask myself, what point in my life was I at when I decided “Old women are useless and a drain on society”.  Was I twenty and in my prime, raging hormones, intellectually sharp, beautiful and full of ambition? Was it when I was turning sixty-five feeling the effects of aging on the body, working in a world of younger people, not thinking quite so clearly and facing the prospect of retiring?  You might also consider; has the view of society changed about this situation, has there been a general paradigm shift and why?

It seems that what we think to be true is influenced by our environment, social climate, ancestors, belief systems, the specific needs at that time and more.

What then is true? Is anything really true, or is truth constantly shifting and moving within our awareness paradigms. What I’m asking here is – “Is truth absolute and unmoving, a final conclusion so to speak or is it something that changes?

Jean Houston writes:   YOU have to follow your heart now with all the courage and conviction of a hero, no matter how many dragons and enemies to your happiness you have to overcome along the way! Otherwise, somebody or something else might follow your heart for you, and pass you up in your own journey. Not staying true to yourself is akin to abandoning your own personal evolution to natural degradation and psychic entropy.    The Feminine Paradigm

Jean Houston is saying that not being true to yourself is abandoning your own personal evolution it’s degrading your self-worth and creating an atrophy of the ability to be uncontrived and natural in the moment.

We know that as time moves on we have an accumulation of knowledge and a record of what happened.  That record of what happened seems to be told differently in history, by the winners and by the losers, by cultural points of view and by the ability to communicate.

H.P. Blavatsky is quoted as saying;  There is no religion higher than truth. Indeed this is the motto that has been adopted by the modern Theosophical movement.

What is truth? Can we talk about truth as facts and knowledge or is it something else?

Could it be that truth is actually the “sweet spot” that we hit on a moving target? Is it about coming to the moment with exactly the awareness and concentration required to “hit the right spot on the tennis swing”, or bring to the moment the exact response required at that point in time?

Black Carbon Footprint on the Astral Plane

Have you ever wondered if what we are doing now will affect what we will experience in the after death states and beyond?

The order of the universe repeats itself in all the states that we experience. The after death states, the meditative states, the dream states and the waking state are all part of a whole.  The great division that we assume exists between waking and dreaming or life and death, is an illusion brought on by our limited awareness which reduces our ability to perceive the real state of things on all levels of being.  If we understood that it is an awareness issue, it would greatly change the way in which we act during daily existence. Everything we do, say, and think is reflected in our states or planes of being to be “recorded” there as a form of energy.

With the lapse of organize religions to help people to understand their place in the world as spiritual beings and to guide people towards  their individual spiritual awakening and to foster brotherhood on a global level, the mainstream of the population have fallen away. Some people no longer believe in the worth of a religious point of view and have dropped routine spiritual practice rituals, prayer, meditation and socialization with others to help one another to maintain a good life.  With this absence of regular spiritual practice and connectedness to something higher than themselves comes a lack of awareness of conscience, the recognition of good over bad and helping one another out of love and justice. With this lack of spiritual connectedness to the great whole, people feel free to do what they want without consequence.

This state of disconnection is proven to us over and over. Over indulgence runs rampant, as is shown in the amount of debt we are piling up, the amount of time spent watching TV, internet gaming and the philosophy that “its all about me”, the “self improvement” regimes which are designed to enhance personal power. And what is even more remarkable, we are even allowed to claim bankruptcy and start all over again as if nothing happened when things go amiss.

I would really hate to claim bankruptcy in the after death state; my over indulgent life being worth nothing and being thrown away, nothing accomplished except a black carbon footprint on the astral plane.  Would I have to abandon this lifetime, as if it never was and let the consequence fall into the astral atmosphere to add to the horrible pollution that exists there?

And where would I be in all of this, where is the real individual? Am I residing as a spiritual being with no memory of this chance at a lifetime, with no merit added from this last lifetime lived, no carryover of a good life lived to pattern the next one?

I know that H.P. Blavatsky (Secret Doctrine) says that a life lived and lost in this way is erased from, what she likens to the “necklace of pearls”; each pearl represents a past lifetime lived and is the accumulated wisdom and merit gained by the essential self.  She goes on the say that the essential, higher self does a complete disconnect with the earthly entity if there is not a spark of spiritual awareness left in the self-absorbed “shell “of a human being; it is left to run its course as a soulless entity.

Blotting out a lifetime which had no merit and in which the earth incarnated man had done a complete disconnect from his/her  “essential being” doesn’t ring true to me. In the law of ecology, nothing is lost, the energy only changes state as I understand it. So then we would have to consider all the astral shells, (the leftovers we might call them) visible and felt in the astral realm (to which we are connected during incarnation, after death states, dreams, trances, etc.) that we may be connected to in some way because we produced them.

It seems to me that Karma still comes into play here; the feeling of being willfully disconnected to the highest essential part of our nature, our link with the whole, has to have some future consequence. It seems logical to me that there is definitely something to be learned here and some consequence for our self-absorbed lifetime which is leaving a black footprint on the astral plane. Who has to do the house cleaning here?

The answer is – we all do on both an individual level and a group level.

Look at the economic state of the world, virtually every country is suffering from debt. Over spending, bankruptcy, greed and will to power have created a situation which is affecting all of us.

Is it any different on the personal level? We are all having to live in an atmosphere littered with virtually “soulless beings”, the direct result of such irresponsible lifetimes lived. We are victims of an environment which we have all contributed to in some way over the course of lifetimes. Have you ever wondered about that “spook” that keeps chasing you in your dreams, those weird guys who are “lurking around the corner” waiting to get you?

I fear a lot of people now are suffering this fate. A lot of people have chosen not to follow a specific religious or spiritual path, are separated from Truth, Love and Wisdom and feel that there is no consequence for their actions.

It seems to me that the masses would be better served to believe in some form of spirit based teachings which will guide the individual to discover his/her true nature – a “spark of the divine over soul”, to lead a good life and is inclusive of all beings.

Not everyone is intellectually capable of the Jnana Path, the path of knowledge, which the Theosophical outlook seems to follow.  A lot of people could grasp the Bhakti path, pure spiritual devotion to the divine and to leading a good life – if they believed in it.

It would seem to make sense to combine the two paths, the path of knowledge and the path of devotion to form a spiritual path which everyone can follow at whatever level is right for their individual spiritual awakening. The important thing is to lay a foundation for leading a good life, truthful, loving and free.

An after death state during the full moon in Taurus

The Real Halloween: Full Moon: Western Sidereal Taurus: December 10 2011:

Since time immemorial the bridge between the living and the dead has been the bridge that spans the Stars in Scorpio and the Stars in Taurus. More specifically the “night of the dead” is when the Sun is in the Constellation of Scorpio and the Moon is full in the Constellation of Taurus. The Moon is said to be exalted in Venus ‘ruled’ Taurus which makes it “the night of the blessed dead”. Alexander Blair-Ewart

Follow this link to Western Sidereal Astrology to read more. This article clearly ties into the after death states which are beautifully described in New Theosophy

An after death state during the full moon in Taurus:

My dead uncle sees me pour a glass of wine. He waits for me to drink it so he can taste it. Weird.

A conversation with him goes on for two days, off and on. He recapitulates his life, we talk about what he told me when he was alive in this life just past.

We had a special bond because during his last few months of life, he had shared “secrets” of his memory of a previous life time. He could tell no one else about such things. He told me about the “fairies” who live under the trees and how he could see them when he was a child. He shared a lot of these experiences and thoughts with me during the time when I cared for him as he was going through the process of dying.

So here he is, on the night of the dead, full moon in Taraus, the real Halloween.  We share a glass of wine, I drink it in honour of him, he loves it and tastes it vicariously through me.  I share with him the guilt I had felt about not being there with him all the time when I knew he needed care.  I had felt stressed, irritable and I could have been better. My uncle forgave me, he felt frustrated too;  he is glad that I was there for him at the end; he knows I was the only one. We resolved that energy that we had together.

He is glad this lifetime as a paraplegic is over; it was a continuation of his experiences in the previous lifetime in WW1 which he remembers in detail.  He died at the age of 15;  he sustained an injury  in this lifetime at 15 years which resulted in paralyses in his legs.

Uncle has followed me for two days now. He came with me to visit family and be in my cottage with me. I told him that I bought the cottage with his money, thank you, thank you. I thanked him for his help, encouragement and support when I was struggling for a few years. He is very happy that I bought real-estate with the money.

I am telling him that it is time to finish with all the issues he needs to review. He should face into everything, don’t blank out, be courageous and make peace with it.  I have learned that if you can’t face something, if it is over whelming and you “blank out” to the reality of it, you will have to come to it over and over again. I tried to help him to move forward.  It is only these things, this review of this life time just lived, that is holding him back to the earth. It’s time to finish up these things and let it go; move towards light, love and peace. He died ten years ago on October 31st. 2001.

His life review continues to flash before me, he knows that it was his own fear and stubbornness that prevented him from getting the medical help he needed when it could have changed the course of this lifetime. He refused to go to a hospital. He knows this, he admits this to me and I tell him “good, you see that now, lesson finished, make peace with what happened,  let it go and move on”.

I must admit that I am enjoying this time with him. For his sake, I hope he moves on in his after death journey. In the mean time I like to play Solitaire with him, the way we did so often when he was alive. One more game before the weekend is over. Will it be our last game together?

Applied Theosophy – a Meditation

I’m sitting alone in the dark, the aftermath of a day of violent thunderstorms passing over Lake Huron in April. The power has been out for five hours now and the storms continue to surge across in waves. It was okay in the daylight, when I could pick up a book and sit in the overcast light of the window, but the light, even in the daytime is no good for drawing or painting, something I love to do when I come up here to my retreat. The computer power is at a premium, just a few minutes left of the battery, before even this shuts down. Then what? I can’t see to write in pencil and I’m not tired enough to go to bed and sleep yet.

There is only one thing left to do, when this internal laptop battery is finished……. Meditation.
Isn’t this crazy? I will be forced into meditation; I feel something pleasurable in the thought that I have to step out of the routine, out of the distraction, this is it. I won’t be able to produce anything, not even writing or reading or drawing.

The battery went off and I spent the night in quiet meditation and sleep. Thunderstorms continued to roll overhead and woke me up several times, then at three a.m. the light in my bedroom burst on as the power was restored. I had formulated some questions and observations in my mind during meditation and every time I awoke I tried to reestablish my meditative thought.

Several years ago during an intense period of spiritual training, my teacher suggested meditation for two hours every day at the same time, without fail, for forty days. It was the beginning of many changes in my awareness, one of which was the ability to observe the Personal Mind or Separate self.

“In other words you have transcended Personal Mind the 4th and become the active witness of your own mind in action. You are no longer the passive recipient of information but have become actively engaged in co-creating what you are thinking about. And you are fully aware that this is what you are doing.” – Spiritual Realism Awareness States

I observed that restlessly looking for something to do is a habit. I was thinking about how most of our day is spent in habitual thinking. The mind finds a certain way or pattern that seems to be effective and goes on automatic pilot, distracted for the most part of the day with things it has deemed as important to do. It’s good not to have to think much about the mundane routines of life; however it is a problem when we move through our whole day as routine. It’s a problem because we are not in the creative space of awareness that allows us to move with uncontrived naturalness; to act in unconditioned truth; to be free of conditioning and fear; to be in a space of Self Awareness.

It’s interesting to see how the separate self (lower mind in theoso’ talk) feels secure and satisfied with a routine and predictable day. It doesn’t like changes, unexpected and unplanned occurrences. This Self that calls itself Star has built up an idea of how it should be in the world. This has occurred through a series of events that happen to everyone; birth, family conditioning, environment and Karma. That Self, sustains the strength of itself by keeping the mind in the mundane routine predictable patterns of thought, actions and reactions throughout the day. We believe this to be our real selves and we energize this Lower/Separate self, by maintaining our attention in that Self. Attention/directed awareness is energy.

We have the power to choose what we give our attention to. Release the mind from its mundane routine and it reacts with energy. Awareness is energy.

It is my experience that the soul reacts with joy when this occurs. It’s a yearning fulfilled; a yearning for something in our lives with purpose, something that is real, and something exciting about to happen. Seeing the ego/lower mind/separate self and acting with intent is what is meant by applied theosophy. It can’t be learned by reading and intellectualizing about it. It is realized by doing; by being; by becoming aware. And this, my friends is the start of a spiritual journey and a new way of being in the world.
Warmest regards to you from Sharon

Divine incarnation already exists within ourselves

True occultism is the destruction of the false idea of self, and therefore true spiritual perception and knowledge are nothing else but the complete identification of our finite ‘selves’ with the Great All. It follows, therefore, that no spiritual progress at all is possible except by and through the bulk of Humanity. HPB

So what does this mean? Blavatsky is saying that we have a false idea of who we are. We are capable of true spiritual perception and knowledge. That spiritual perception and knowledge is obtained by breaking free of the illusion projected by the finite part of ourselves that is telling us that it is the real and only self there is;  breaking free of this idea, we see that we are still alive and aware, but part of something far greater than the finite self could comprehend. She describes it as the Great All,  and says that by identifying our finite selves with the Great All, and realizing the identification of all humanity with this as the source, we can make spiritual progress.

If we take what she is saying as true, I would not follow the transcendent path in which one wishes to escape the illusion of the earthly life and leave humanity behind. Where is the spiritual progress going to happen if it is not a process of becoming fully awake and enlightened here on earth, a blend of the finite self and the highest part of oneself which is a ray of the Great All; the awakening of the finite self to its source, truly an incarnation of spirit into matter.

Isn’t that the message of all the great spiritual teachers of humanity; the divine incarnation of spirit in man? It goes back to ancient Egypt and is reignited in the teachings of Christ.

I always loved the teachings of Buddha, but I felt uneasy about the idea of Nirvana being the ultimate transcendence. It states that we lose our individuality with a blending into the one reality. HPB states that we retain our individuality throughout Manvantaras of time. Lately I have come to realize that although some Buddhist believe Nirvana to be eternal, others say that it is only a cul de sac, a temporary state, all be it an amazing state of being and spiritual accomplishment. So even in Buddhism then, it is about the divine incarnation of spirit into matter; or “the complete identification of our finite selves with the Great All”.

In theosophy we have spoken about the different aspects man’s constitution, and said that Kama Manas is the Lower Mind and Emotional psychic self which makes up the personality; Manas in its purity is the Higher Mind and the link to the divine nature in man, our link to the logos; the word, our link to all humanity in our deepest essence.  Seeing this, one can understand that the divine incarnation is not “a happening” at all, it’s a fact that already exists within ourselves.

The Spiritual State

The spiritual state is not a condition which is set or static, not a placid immobility, but a state of dynamism and balance. It is both negative and positive; negative for understanding, positive for action.  – N. Sri Ram

Artisits have an advantage on the spiritual path.

In a creative interplay between the conscious and unconscious, which mind makes the decisions when painting?

Lights and colours flash across the scene; the changing sky, the glimmer on the water, the moving air, the waving  trees and rushes. Do we paint what we see or do we try to capture the energy behind the moment? Trying to express something like the mood of the scene, the crispness of the winter cold, the sultriness of a hot summer day, the wildness of fierce winds, makes us stretch our consciousness from the tangible to the intangible. We know it, feel it and hold it in our consciousness while we try to express that which is felt only by the intuition.

The artist instinctively knows when he has it right or wrong. When it is wrong there is a sense of nervous restlessness, frustration and struggle; but when it’s right, oh then he knows it; the work of art has something that gives us a feeling of harmony, a truth to it, and nothing else has to be done. It is finished.

There is an aesthetic sense in play here, where we humans know when it’s harmonious, complete and right and it has nothing to do with the subject matter. This intuitive sense is part of the essential spiritual self and a larger whole, it’s a connection with a consciousness beyond our everyday narrative of the mind.

The artist has a huge advantage when he enters the spiritual path. Every picture is a meditation, a focus of consciousness in which he/she is searching for perfection and harmony.

A. Lismer writes of Tom Thomson:
“He saw a thousand things – animals and birds, and signs along the trail that others missed. He knew where to find subjects – a stretch of muskeg, a fine stand of pine with possibilities for the kind of thing he wanted to paint. He could drop a line in places, and catch a fish where other experienced fishermen had failed. He identified a bird song, and noted changes in the weather. He could find his way over open water to a portage or a camp on a night as black as ink. It was this sense of awareness and significance of simple sights and sounds, his uncanny sensitivity carried over into his paintings and sketching that gave the authentic tang to his work.”

“Authentic tang”, I like that expression. I shall strive for authentic tang in my work.