Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Harmonizing

This evening Maria asked me to sit with her and harmonize with the ocean thus making it easier for her to do the same through her connection with me. I started by visualizing and then feeling what I described yesterday. I then focused on the feeling of a storm at sea and the roiling surface versus the calm depth. Then I focused on the various birds, from the gulls and terns through the ospreys and eagles, then the different fishes, crabs and other animals. I felt the shifting of tides and finished with the bays and estuaries which provide much nourishment for the entire planet. When I was done her comment was "amazing!’ and I agree. When I harmonize the feelings are very complex and it works best if I do not think just "be with" and "allow".

Monday, December 17, 2018

Harmony

When I am sitting and meditating on the banks of the sea of Cortez I join with the ocean and feel its, largely latent, power, fluidity and its life giving force, I am in harmony with it as part of the joining. Very similarly when I meditate in the middle of the night I join with and feel harmony with God’s power and love. This afternoon there was a beautiful, adult red-shouldered hawk perched and watching for prey in the wooded area next to our backyard. I could see its majesty and feel its vigor and strength. The hawk then flew down and captured some prey, which it ate. The feeling of harmony adds depth to my observation.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Silence

Today and yesterday I spent some time performing regular activities like food preparation, talking to people and exercise. In addition I was able to spend several hours doing a very restorative mix of meditation and rest, what I call sorting time. During the periods of meditation I allow my mind to wander some and also spend most of the time focused on topics of concern. I don’t allow my mind to get into circular obsession but I do permit some wandering to make sure I address all my concerns. When done I feel a greater sense of harmony with "All that is". "It [inner silence] is to establish an inner peace, an inner harmony, which will allow us authentically to contribute to the establishment of an outer peace and an outer harmony in the world at large." (Daniel A. Seeger)

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Love Energy

Science, particularly quantum physics, has demonstrated that the objects we consider to be solid are actually composed of very small amounts of proton, neutron and electron particles whirling through a large amount of space. We are largely made up of space and that space contains various sorts of energy. That energy affects those solid particles. The rest is speculation. I speculate that love is a very potent form of energy which can impact the particles around it. Specifically I suspect that an atmosphere of love can and does impact on the choices and actions we make, as humans.

Friday, December 14, 2018

Holistic Health

I have what I gather are the typical muscular and joint aches and pains of a seventy year old man along with some additional pains due to my disability and past abuses. These problems are largely physical and often accompanied by inflammation and swelling. These problems though largely physically caused, are influenced by conscious and unconscious emotions — particularly their rate of healing. When I have some sort of ache or pain I generally join with it through meditation, ask what it has to tell me and proceed accordingly. The process helps my sense of well-being. "When the diverse living energies of the human system are harmonized, the present bloody face of the world will be transformed into an image of the face of God." (A.B. Schmookler)

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Presence

"According to Thomas, Jesus says that this primordial light not only brought the entire universe into being but still shines through everything we see and touch." (Elaine Pagels). When I am meditating on the bank of the sea of Cortez in Mexico I can feel the ocean. It feels very powerful, full of life and Love. When I am doing a dawn ceremony in my backyard the way it feels varies a little with the seasons but I can always feel the vibrance of our big "guardian" tree and the other vegetation. They always feel love and gratitude for each other and the current season and weather conditions, whatever they are. There is always a feeling of presence. It is wonderful to be part of that.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Growth

In my work with spirits and my efforts to change the world, I wish to know more about what I am doing and to have more guidance as I proceed. I have asked for each in prayer and I have also made it clear that I would continue regardless and that whoever is guiding me knows best. I suspect I also need to give up more of my attachment to the world as I now know it. "To get we must also give, to advance we must also surrender, to gain we must lose, to attain we must resign. From the nature of things life means choice and selection, and every positive choice negates all other possibilities." (Rufus Jones)

Monday, December 10, 2018

Allowing

A few days ago I spoke of facing life most days with gratitude and acceptance which then allows me to minimize the impact of any serious problems. This morning I felt disgruntled at the way things are and the challenges I deal with daily. Allowing myself to feel that way is an important part of loving myself as is letting the feeling pass. I felt disturbed for a while and now I am back to feeling grateful. "Allowing" is a fun way to face irrational complexities!

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Discernment

This morning after the Friend’s Meeting for Worship Maria and I had some weighty or significant initial conversations with four people. I call the conversations weighty or significant because there was a definite connection with each of them and the "fruits of the spirit (love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, trustfulness, gentleness and self-control) were present, meaning a divine presence. I can’t help wondering where the encounter will lead or why it was significant — and I suspect I’ll find out when the time is right. "Discernment is a gift from God, not as a personal achievement. The gift is not the result of training, technique, or analysis. Like other gifts of God, its origin is mysterious and gratuitous." (Patricia Loring)

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Day To Day

Today the main issue I am dealing with is learning to sleep on my back rather than my stomach and I need to remember the Buddhist comment "first the laundry, then the ecstacy". My shoulders and back do better and have less pain and strain if I sleep on my back. I also am just more peaceful in that orientation though it is not my preferred position. I am accustomed to dealing with issues that are more complex, esoteric and potentially far reaching. However, I also need to attend to the simple, straight forward matters as well. When I address the simple life issues that seem trivial, I am better equipped to do things I think important.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Acceptance And Gratitude

Recently I have had several examples in my life of what it’s like not to accept life the way it is and I realize that I would feel a lot worse if I did not approach my life with gratitude and acceptance. I need not like the limitations of getting older and being disabled but if I accept those limitations I can work with them and minimize there impact on me. Fighting with them only results in my feeling worse. I can also always be grateful. Today I can be grateful for being largely free of pain but even on days when I have pain I can be grateful that my condition is not worse. I am reminded of the Buddhist comment that "pain is inevitable, suffering is optional".

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Courage To Change

When I began my recovery back in 1985 I was thirty-six and still using behaviors I had learned as a child growing up in an abusive alcoholic home. Those behaviors included things like perfectionism, hyper-vigilance about what others thought of me and self-hatred. Behaviors which had originally begun as survival tools and which I had melded into my lifestyle but which no longer served me well since they caused anxiety. I began attending recovery meetings in order to change those behaviors, realizing that change would require courage since part of me still believed that those behaviors were a necessary part of survival. I am very grateful that through the love and support of many people I found the necessary "courage to change" and today need to recall how difficult that was, as I assist others in the process.

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Simple Life

I have been reading Marcelle Martin’s Our Life is Love: The Quaker Spiritual Journey. In the chapter I am reading now she describes the simple life of the faithful and I find that she is describing much of the life I lead. I choose this type of life because it fits me, not because of some sort of adherence to the way of faith. We have many pieces of very simple and basic hand made antique furniture which I bought at auctions (cheaply!) And refinished. Most of those pieces have been ugly and are now beautiful but scared a bit and showing some road marks, reminding me of the owner. I am very grateful to be leading a life of love.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Listening

My wife commented today that I had more challenges up ahead in response to my saying that my work with the spirits had been one of support and encouragement for the last few days and relatively easy. It’s true that I am clearly not done and that there is much to do for the world to become a loving, spiritual place of being. I feel a strong need to be open and listen. "It requires even more discernment to discover whether the ministry called for from a particular individual in a particular instance requires prophetic speech, humble and hidden activities, bold and dramatic action, professional service or some, novel and previously unimagined course." (Patricia Loring)

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Being Rather Than Having And Doing

Tonight during meditation I began by focusing on the feeling of unconditional love, then enlarged the scope to include "being" as opposed to doing and having. After blasting the spirits and everything around me with healing, Loving energy I sent them the message of being and urged them to "pass it on". That all felt very good and solid, in a fluid sort of way! With all the talk and advertisements about black Friday and the daily emphasis on "doing" our jobs, I urge balance. "To attain excellence, you must care more than others think wise, risk more than others think safe and dream more than others think practical".

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Life

Today I just performed my normal daily activities and was an example of being grateful, unattached, present and flowing free through life. I serve as an example to the seen and unseen entities I work with and contact. I certainly have daily challenges, more than some, less than others, that add texture to my passage through life but I live with them and am grateful for the rest. Today I went to a recovery meeting, exercised, talked to people I mentor, cooked and ate — not bad. "The happiness we discover in life is not about possessing or owning or even understanding. Instead, it is the discovery of this capacity to love, to have a loving, free and wise relationship with all of life. Such love is not possessive but arises out of a sense of our own well-being and connection with everything." (Kornfield)

Friday, November 30, 2018

Meditation

Tonight during meditation I was focusing on that powerful, overwhelming feeling of unconditional Love when the words I read from Richard Pries many years ago flashed through my mind: "Nothing [worldly] matters very much and very few things matter at all". I identify that wonderful feeling of Love with God and eternity. I just sat with that awareness and feeling for a while. I find it very comforting that the various forms of money, power and prestige which I encounter daily have little or no long lasting value. When going through my day I sometimes ask myself "would I care about this if I were on my deathbed", especially if some trivial thing seems important to me.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Lack Of Understanding

Today during my meditation and contemplation I was continuing my exploration of my lack of understanding I began to write about yesterday. As I stated, I do not understand the spirit world or reality in general. I am, however, aware of my very human tendency to make believe that I understand something if I can label and categorize it. This is a very dangerous tendency since it can result in stopping my open exploration and discarding things that do not fit my categorization, thus distorting my view. For example, I have used and heard others refer to "old souls" as a categorization when I understand that there are only differences in souls regardless of age. These differences result from different experiences and result in different understanding but do not fit nicely into simple categories. "My personal experiences as a medium have proved to me that God exists, heaven and the Other Side exist, souls are immortal, we can communicate with souls, and we will be reunited with our love ones on the Other Side. I’ve also come to understand there is no hell, although there are multiple levels on the Other Side and reincarnation." (Mark Anthony)

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Reality

It is clear to me that I do not understand the spirit world or reality in general and I am not sure that matters beyond knowing that my present concept is not correct. The reason this comes up for me is that I want to be as effective as possible in my dealings with spirits. At one point in 1988 I was removed briefly from the space-time continuum as I knew it, thus making it obvious that my concept was overly simplistic and incorrect. Similarly, other people and I have had out-of-body experiences, making it clear that consciousness is not necessarily connected with the brain or any other part of the body. I wonder if I need to know more but also assume that if needed, I will be shown. "Reality is only partly our invention; it is also partly our discovery. Our task is to discover how much and in what areas which is which; and then to determine how much new freedom this gives us and what we can do with it". (Lawrence LeShan)

Monday, November 26, 2018

Meditation

Tonight I had an especially strong meditation and connection with the Loving and healing presence I know as God. I focused on being within a bubble of Love. I reflected on the fact that I am so much more than I ever thought I could be and so can everyone else. I make daily efforts to pass on what I have discovered and I encourage spirits to do the same. "The unending yearnings of the human spirit are satisfied by nothing that can be measured, seen, heard or touched. To focus selfishly on anything in the created order is to be restricted and thus to fall that far short of full freedom." (Thomas Dubay, S. M.)

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Connection

We had a meeting of our reading group today and the topic was community and connection, that wonderful feeling of presence and being connected to everything and everybody in a group. Some spoke of it as feeling "home". Since it is a Quaker reading group that feeling was talked about as being present during meetings for worship or Quaker business meetings. When I spoke I commented that I had experienced that feeling in a variety of settings. The feeling of community is open to anyone who is willing to put their own ego aside and have the necessary discipline to love and respect everyone.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Speaking Gently

The last few days have been an exercise in having people angry at me and not taking it personally, which I did reasonably well, though I like it better when I get a positive response. I am often in a position where people ask me for advice and sometimes they do not like what I say, even when I speak gently. For example, I made several suggestions to someone regarding some potential changes in their behavior at recovery meetings. They responded by getting angry at me, saying "I don’t want to" and deciding to stop talking to me. When I respond to someone I make certain that I am avoiding any personal agendas and that my words are loving and "increase the integrity of the universe, then I speak and let it go.

Friday, November 23, 2018

War Or Love?

Today it is clear to me that war, aggression and killing never "increase the integrity of the universe", those actions are never a loving response. It is also clear to me and I communicate to the spirits I work with, that I do not know what that loving response would be but we agree that war is not it. I believe that using quiet meditation, getting past the fear and anger response and listening to "that small quiet voice" we can arrive at a loving, functional response. As I have learned in my own life, that requires discipline and patience but it works.".... We shall never succeed in stopping war until we have a human society permeated with persons who practice a way of life which removes and abolishes the grounds and occasions of war, and at the same time matures and ripens a spirit of mutual understanding and personal cooperation. (Rufus Jones)

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Near-Death-Experience

Today I watched a movie (Let Their Be Light) about an atheist professor who experienced a conversion and transformation because of a Near-Death-Experience during which he was in the tunnel, saw his deceased child, saw a powerful light and felt intense, pure love. The love he felt was much stronger than anything human. He attributed what he saw and felt to Jesus Christ. During my own N.D.E. I felt the same love but saw no visions. The love I was bathed in was much stronger, more pure and unconditional than anything in my human experience and I was told "this is what it feels like to be dead". The love I felt was freely given and I felt no tendency to attribute it to any specific source and,.in fact, I felt that the name used did not matter — the love did. People use many different names and have many different cultural backgrounds and none of that mattered — the love did.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Self-care

I was tending toward becoming a "human doing" rather than a "human being", meaning that I was beginning to emphasize doing things and accomplishments over spiritual well-being. This is a common trap that I have fallen into before. I usually don’t do much since it takes me so long to do things and nothing is easy. I also usually spend several hours meditating, contemplating and just sitting. I had cut back on my meditation time in favor of doing more, a pattern that does not work for me. Time to meditate!

Monday, November 19, 2018

Guidance

I have encountered many situations that baffle me and result in me not knowing how to proceed. The situation I described yesterday is a good example. What I do and what I did is to wait until a time when I was alone so could focus. Then I meditated on the situation and asked for guidance. In this case I was told to take the lead and show my trust and good will first by opening up totally for her scrutiny, which is what I did, and it worked so that she was willing to connect. "Help comes from somewhere and enables us to do what we had always thought could not be done." (Rufus Jones)

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Connection

Strange day — I attended a pre-Thanksgiving gathering of in-laws during which I attempted to connect with a four month old baby girl. At first I was across the room and kept trying to connect by projection and was consistently met with a very flat or nothing feeling which I took to mean that in order to connect I needed to have some physical contact. I resisted that idea for a while since it was a crowded room and I am not coordinated or stable. I finally did get up and go over to the baby and her mother while my wife was there. I offered my finger for the baby to grasp which she did and I was still unable to connect, still a flat nothing. I realized then that she did not want to which surprised me since I had always been able to connect with babies before. She finally looked at me and I felt her say "OK.....maybe". We shall see.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Connection

This morning I had the opportunity to connect briefly with a young person who had Down’s syndrome and I was reminded of a similar young man I have known in the past. There was a sense of purity, simplicity and happiness coming from him. With the previous young man there was also a solid connection with God and eternity which I envied since the connection was not cluttered with intellect, as it is with me. I have to work at my connection while his came to him simply and easily. "Seek Him we must, with a headlong love, with enthusiasm and romantic ardor, but also with lowliness and patience, and that is a hard combination." (Gilbert Kilpack)

Friday, November 16, 2018

Courage

The "Serenity Prayer" (God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference) calls for the courage to make changes in my life. I often feel like I do not have the necessary courage so during meditation I fill myself with gratitude, love and faith, then decide what action to take. When I take the action I frequently a mixture of fear and faith. So far, things have always worked out for the best. "Faith, then, means putting trust in a process that slowly builds an intimate relationship with someone I can neither see nor fully understand, but only feel. Living a life of faith implies being in continual contact with God and opening up to being searched and known." (Elizabeth Ostrander Sutton)

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Ministry

Because of the power of love and my connection with God/eternity, I am a great deal more than I was. I would like to share that. Tonight I was able, through meditation, to show that to the spirits and encourage them to pass that on to the living. I also serve as an example of them being able to impact the living in a way that supports the ideals for which they fought and died for. Words and thoughts are not enough to convince them so I let them probe me and show them what that power feels like and has done for me, then they get it. "Great deeds can only be achieved when we are more than our little selves. When we are lent wings we should not reject them." (Irene Claremont deCastillejo)

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Gratitude

Today I felt like a creaky old man and the facts are that I am seventy years old, disabled with poor coordination and balance and in a body that I abused for much of my life. I get a choice between being angry for my situation or grateful for my life and glad it is not worse. Neither choice changes anything other than my attitude and the way I feel. I choose gratitude! After all I have a home, several good friends, a wonderful wife, a warm bed and good food. I am also upright, breathing and not in much pain or in a wheel chair. Working with the spirits from Arlington National Cemetery and other places gives me a sense of purpose.

Monday, November 12, 2018

Love And Faith

"Love instead of war, killing, aggression and death" is what I hear for the method of achieving the goals of the ideals the spirits believed in and some died for. Then my mind comes back with the question "what if the perpetrators are intent on using aggression". The feeling that comes back strongly is "trust in the process" so that is what I will do and also present as a solution. It is clear to me that this is a case that logic, reasoning and words will not satisfy while knowing and faith will. "To understand better the value of silence in daily life, and its relation to this spiritual transformation for which we yearn, it is useful first to consider the limitation of language, of words It is next useful to contemplate the limitations of logical reasoning." (Daniel A. Seeger)

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Conflict and Resolution

Today, during my meditation with some of the spirits from Arlington National Cemetery, I encountered a conflict which concerned me for a while. Some of the spirits agreed on the one hand that killing, aggression and death would not get us closer to the ideals they believed in and some died for. And on the other hand that killing, aggression and death had to help, a belief they had been taught and were committed to. I felt confused and thought they might be right that violence was necessary, at least some of the time. I asked for guidance and meditated. In that meditation I was flooded with remembrance the many instance when violence melted and vanished as a result of love like when members of a church turned toward prayers for perpetrators rather than retaliation. "In the Dhammapada he [the Buddha] teaches that in this world hate never dispels hate. Only love dispels hate."

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Being Right Sized

This morning I commented to my wife that I was feeling confused and she made the very helpful comments that "you are not in charge and you are only one person". It was good to be reminded to be "right sized". During my meditation and contemplation today I made it clear to myself that I needed to liste, did not have the answers to life and did not have a full understanding. All were good thoughts to keep me right sized and in reality. According to the gospel of Thomas Jesus said, "Let the one who seeks not stop seeking until he finds. When he finds he will become troubled; when he becomes troubled, he will be astonished and will rule over all things."

Friday, November 9, 2018

Meditation

The theme for my recovery meeting today was "prayer and meditation", a subject I enjoy and feel very passionate about. The subject of meditation also came up during some conversations and during my own contemplation. I particularly enjoy hearing "beginners" speak of their experience of trying meditation without believing in God or anything else in particular and still benefitting tremendously from the experience, much as I did. During my conversations and contemplation I reflected on the physical healing that I and others have experienced as a result of meditation. I wrote about that two days ago. Meditation is one of those practices that seems ethereal but is, in fact, very practical and simple. I have heard it described as "anything that quiets the clamoring of the intellect".

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Holistic Healing

I have had numerous physical problems for which I have, successfully, turned to a spiritual or holistic solution and also some for which I have turned to traditional western medicine. The latter include things like two hernias and some broken bones, though even in those cases I facilitated the healing process. At this point the physical problems for which I have used a spiritual or holistic solution include cerebellar degeneration, a faulty heart valve, hypothyroidism, a prostate problem, joint difficulties and numerous cuts and cysts. In each case I have used the power of love through meditation and been successful enough that several doctors have concluded that I was miss-diagnosed when I was not. My connection with the power I call God has made all this possible and it is through God that I get the needed guidance

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Life

I have been looking at the man I am today and the many challenges and gifts of my past, realizing that all of those life events were important in forming me, as I am. My early years were spent in a loveless, politely violent alcoholic home so I spent much of the time wandering alone in nearby field. Through that part of my history I leaned the importance of love and silent solitude. I also gained empathy and understanding for people with similar challenges. Everything was perfect for molding me. "To get we must also give, to advance we must also surrender, to gain we must lose, to attain we must resign. From the nature of things life means choice and selection, and every positive choice negates all other possibilities." (Rufus Jones)

Monday, November 5, 2018

mixed motives

While I was talking about someone today I pointed out that he had mixed motives for many of his actions and I would like to mention that I too have some mixed thoughts surrounding my actions — not quite mixed motives but at least passing thoughts. For example I wrote my book and do many other things purely to be of service to others but I also have thoughts about becoming famous or having public gratitude expressed. I consider those thoughts to be part of my humanity, not frailties just there. "It is not that the demonic forces within the unconscious are not capable of destruction and disintegration. It is rather that within the mystery of the conjunction of opposites their sting can be drawn, their poison drained, and their very energy harnessed to realize a more profound individuation. (John Yungblut)

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Ministry

I spent much of the day communicating with each of various groups of spirits from Arlington National Cemetery about non-violence, love, God, compassion and using the three questions I mentioned yesterday. I kept pointing out that they could influence the behavior of the living in order to bring about the ideals they lived and died for. Communication is easier than with the living since they have the gift of discernment and they are able to probe me completely, so they know I am genuine and speak the truth. I serve as their example. The last grouping I worked with this evening were the "notables", political and non-political leaders, who, as a group, were confused to realize that killing, aggression and death would not get us closer to their ideal in spite of what they were told. I will continue to communicate with them but what they do with the information is up to them. "It requires even more discernment to discover whether the ministry called for from a particular individual in a particular instance requires prophetic speech, humble and hidden activities, bold and dramatic action, professional service or some, novel and previously unimagined course." (Patricia Loring)

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Choices

Today Maria and I took a tour of Arlington National Cemetery and I began to get to know some of the many, diverse spirits there. It felt like a beginning of something...... They were diverse in many ways but the ones I communicated with were unified in their disappointment and sadness over the way things are versus the ideal they lived and died for. They were also unified in the realization that killing, aggression and death do not get us closer to that ideal in spite of what they were told. I made it clear that I did not have the answers but that answers could be found by listening and acting according to that "small quiet voice" within. I also suggested using the three questions ("Would I do this in front of God [or whatever you call the power or force behind the Universe]?; Is my name really on it [or is it really my responsibility]?; Will this increase the integrity of the universe [or is this action motivated by love, rather than fear, acting out of love always increases the integrity of the universe]").

Friday, November 2, 2018

Eternal View

When I can meditate, put my own very temporal, worldly thought and fears aside and listen to the divine, loving presence it becomes clear to me that eternally everything is moving along just fine. On the other hand if I listen to the news (N.P.T.) or read the paper (Washington Post) it is obvious that we are destroying the planet we depend on, hating and killing each other and making short-term choices which are not sustainable. "We can cultivate an environment among us which will foster one another’s spiritual growth by directing and redirecting intention and attention to God; by discouraging what draws us away; by loving support for each other in the vicissitudes of our utterly human lives; by respecting and cherishing the uniqueness of each life." (Patricia Loring)

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

God's Love

Tonight was Halloween and Maria, my wife, responded to most of our trick-or-treaters since she is more physically able, but I responded to the first two groups. I noticed that I automatically and instantaneously got a big warm smile and felt a huge wave of love for our visitors and their parents. They responded much the same and probably thought it was me. I realized that what they and I were experiencing was God and the god part of me. Thinking about it I had the same experience earlier in the day when I saw people at my recovery meeting and talked to people on the phone. I will do the same when I go to Arlington Cemetery this weekend. "Man is separated from God, but secretly united to God; that is the prime fact of life, and all things in all creation speak of this separation, this incompleteness which has infected all." (Gilbert Kilpack)

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Practice

I spent much of the day processing my own thoughts and understanding, meaning a lot of sitting, meditating, contemplating and resting. For me the difference between meditating and contemplating is that in the former I have my eyes closed, practice being in the present and focused on some question or idea. During contemplation I keep my eyes open and let my mind wander. Both are useful and needed. Other than Arlington Cemetery being the main theme, I have no idea what happened and I also know I was not done so now I continue.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Loving support

During my formative years and until a couple of my teachers in high school no-one thought much of me or my potential. Some of my early teachers tried to hold me back because I had not memorized the alphabet and later they tried to show that I could not read. I had no interest in cooperating with them or demonstrating I was more than they thought. I now know that they simply did not understand me but their beliefs also left scars on my concept of self. I have worked (successfully!) at changing my self-concept and now make an effort to be loving, supportive and understanding of others."One by one we move beyond conceptions of ourselves, just as we pass beyond metaphors, symbols, and conceptions of God on the way into unmediated, unknowing, intimate relationship with the source of our being." (Patricia Loring)

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Life

It was a long day with many diverse activities and I over did it by a little — as sometimes happens. The day began with a period of Friends worship followed by a meeting and discussion of our reading group. Maria and I then went to her mother’s for a few hours. We came home, I rested a while then had a very nice talk and connection with a friend. I had several loving connections up to this point and was doing well. It was then that I made the mistake of continuing my cleaning of the back deck because that was my plan, rather than realizing I had done enough and stopping for the day. As a result of being tired I bit myself and had some pain while eating dinner — and later realized my mistake. It’s time to take it easy for a while.

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Sacred Time

It is the middle of the night and, as I do every night, I have gotten out of bed for a period of prayer and meditation. It is during this two hour block of time that I "sift" through the activities of the previous day and my spiritual quotes seeking inspiration, which I then write about in this blog. Before writing I go through the previous day looking for activities or feelings that jump out at me. Today’s most prominent event of today was a few seconds when my eyes locked with the eyes of a baby we were visiting. She was taking note and probing me while I was blessing her, an intense and memorable few seconds. "When a peaceful silence lay over all, and the night had run half of her swift course, down from the heavens, from the royal throne, leapt your all powerful word." the book of Wisdom 18:14, 15

Friday, October 26, 2018

Gratitude

This evening I was hit with a wave of gratitude while putting away our cleaned dishes in preparation for making dinner. I had just rested having exhausted myself by scrubbing a smallish portion of the deck in the rear of our house. Scrubbing the deck will probably take me an hour or two a day (all I can manage!) for about five days, remembering that all tasks take three to five times the time normally required. Maria was in the basement continuing some repair work on one of our closets. We were each doing what we could in our own ways. My gratitude was because we make a good team and it could be so much worse.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

My Plan

The spirits at Arlington National Cemetery are a diverse group of various ages, races, experiential backgrounds and both sexes at the time of death. I cannot possibly understand the differences but I can respect and love them. I can and will transmit to them that "very strong feeling or knowing of a Presence together with a very powerful feeling of unconditional Love and extreme peace", which I wrote of yesterday. I will also transmit my three questions ("Would I do this in front of God [or whatever you call the power or force behind the Universe]?; Is my name really on it [or is it really my responsibility]?; Will this increase the integrity of the universe [or is this action motivated by love, rather than fear, acting out of love always increases the integrity of the universe]) and ask that they, in turn, influence the living with these simple but powerful feelings. The specifics will vary according to the diversity — which is just fine.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Near-Death-Experience

When I had my Near-Death-Experience back in 2006 I was told "this is what it feels like to be dead". That feeling was a very strong feeling or knowing of a Presence together with a very powerful feeling of unconditional Love and extreme peace. My initial thought was that everyone would feel that when they died but then I quickly had the understanding that would be my experience and others would have something different. That feeling was available to all but what happened depended on the person’s experiences and beliefs. I planed to transmit that feeling and knowing to the spirits at Arlington Cemetery, but now understand that "It’s not that simple". I need to meditate on that. According to the Thomas gospel Jesus said, "I am the light which is before all things. It is I who am all things. From me all things came forth, and to me all things extend. Split a piece of wood, and I am there; lift up the stone, and you will find me."

Monday, October 22, 2018

Mystical contact

I commented yesterday that "My contact with the unseen, particularly spirits, has impacted me profoundly." That contact or awareness results in everything having greater depth, reality, purity and love. Working in the garden, cooking or even cleaning the toilet becomes a rich experience. I would like to pass that along to others. "To the mystic he [God] becomes real in the same sense that experienced beauty is real, or the feel of spring is real, or that summer sunlight is real — he has been found, he has been met, he is present." (Rufus Jones)

Sunday, October 21, 2018

Ministry

As I was removing onion grass, a common weed, from my garden it occurred to me that, for the spirits at Arlington Cemetery, I could serve as an clear example of how spirits could impact the behavior of living humans, giving them a definite example and reference point. My contact with the unseen, particularly spirits, has impacted me profoundly. Rufus Jones points out that "God must have an instrument — an organ is perhaps a better word — for the revelation of His love and tenderness, just as his physical energies must have their coordinator and transmitter." I am honored to fill such a role. "When I shake myself awake and find that I have been doing that, [forgetting the need and importance of being a transmitter] I am always humbled and made heartily ashamed, for the one really big business in this world or in any world is the business of being a coordinator, a transmitter, of the love of God, the love of God revealed in a man like us."

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Balance

This was a peaceful day with no new revelations or challenges — very good, earned and enjoyed. I exercised, watched part of a silly but enjoyable movie, did a lot of gardening, some meditating and cooking. The first half of the day was spent in solitude. I was watching the super-hero movie and I heard my own head say "You have better things to do." so I went outside to the peace and quiet of gardening. I need to be careful to take the time needed for self if I am to continue being of service to others. Balance in all things.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Pass It On

Being aware of and in contact with the spirit realm has enriched my life immeasurably and I now wish to pass that sensation on to the spirits at Arlington Cemetery so that they may pass it on to other living beings, if they so desire. They can have a very positive impact on the energetic atmosphere around living people, altering the decision making and choices of those people. I can and will be a living example of that relationship to the spirits within the cemetery, so that they can sense it and pass it on. The specifics of those other relationships will, of course, vary in each case. As I wrote a few days ago: "The spirits at Arlington Cemetery, having experienced war,....are very committed and loyal to peace, love and freedom." I hope to give them a chance to express and develop that loyalty through affecting living people, an exciting opportunity for all of us. "A true Master is not the one with the most students, but the one who creates the most Masters.
A true leader is not the one with the most followers, but the one who creates the most leaders.
A true king is not the one with the most subjects, but the one who leads the most to royalty.
A true teacher is not the one with the most knowledge, but the one who causes the most others to have

knowledge.
And a true God is not One with the most servants, but One who serves the most, thereby making
Gods of all others.
For this is both the goal and glory of God: that his subjects shall be no more, and that all shall
know God not as the unattainable, but as the unavoidable." (Walsch)

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Being of Service

I look back over my life with gratitude realizing that I have been carefully prepared and molded for the spirit and spiritual work I am doing today. I am deeply humbled. In 2006 when I had my Near-Death-Experience I was told "You can stay here or go back and be of service", so I came back. I am now beginning to realize what that choice meant. "One by one we move beyond conceptions of ourselves, just as we pass beyond metaphors, symbols, and conceptions of God on the way into unmediated, unknowing, intimate relationship with the source of our being." (Patricia Loring)

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Working With Others

When working with the spirits, or anyone else for that matter, I need to be careful to make sure I am not pushing my own agenda rather than truly listening and supporting theirs. It took me three days worth of meditation and contemplation for me to feel confident about my recommending that the spirits consider using the three questions I have used. In this instance the questions will guide them to their own answers and outcomes rather than my imposing anything planned by me. They are a very diverse group and their actions will be also. I have been subjected to the agendas of other people and that usually does not end well, in spite of their good intentions.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Love Not War

War, aggression, anger and fighting is very simple and it feeds the aggressive part of ourselves, that part of human nature. Aggression feels good or, in psychological terms, it is ego syntonic. However, as history shows, aggression leads to aggression, not peace. The spirits at Arlington Cemetery, having experienced war, understand this and are very committed and loyal to peace, love and freedom. I will support them, possibly with the three questions which have helped me: "Would I do this in front of God [or whatever you call the power or force behind the Universe]?; Is my name really on it [or is it really my responsibility]?; Will this increase the integrity of the universe [or is this action motivated by love, rather than fear, acting out of love always increases the integrity of the universe]".

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Processing

Today was a day of processing and integrating what took place at Arlington National Cemetery, meaning, self-care, meditation, contemplation, an active form of processing while sleeping and exercise. I still notice the great diversity of spirits of all ages, colors sexes and backgrounds. Our communication and questions were about relationships, how to maintain them at all levels, peacefully, with love, respect and support for all. It is clear that given the diversity, the specific answers would vary within a base of love, peace and God. It was clear to them, having shifted to the spirit plane, that war and killing was not the answer they thought it was. "We can cultivate an environment among us which will foster one another’s spiritual growth by directing and redirecting intention and attention to God; by discouraging what draws us away; by loving support for each other in the vicissitudes of our utterly human lives; by respecting and cherishing the uniqueness of each life." (Patricia Loring)

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Ministry

What a day! Maria and I did go to be with the spirits at Arlington National Cemetery, listen and learn. They were glad of our presence and the fact that we came to listen to them. I found them to be very diverse as far as most ideas, attitudes, ages and backgrounds and unified in their strong commitment to a sense of honor, love and community, which was why they fought in the first place. They were also, for the most part, clear that killing and war was not the answer, at least long term. We all shared a lack of clarity about what the answer was. I commended them on their commitment to honor, love and community. I also shared my connection to God and suggested that it was through love, peace and God they would find their answers. I suggested they could influence the living to do the same. One thing which was clear is that we are not done, this was only a beginning. I need to continue processing the day.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Listening For Guidance

Tomorrow my wife and I will go visit Arlington National Cemetery in order for me to work with the spirits there, a big deal for me — so tonight I am twitchy and nervous. As always I will attempt to be open, listen and do what I am told. My plan is to help get rid of any negative influences, give or show them God’s Love and suggest they impact the living by producing a loving atmosphere, very simple — and then listen for more! The most important task is for me to listen for guidance. "You can be a saint, if you want to be one. It's as simple as that. Only you must remember, ALL THE TIME, that GOD makes saints, not we: we just do what we are told. But in order to do what we are told, we must hear what is said, and in order to hear we must listen, and in order to listen, we must be quiet - not only with our tongues, but interiorly, in our minds and hearts." (Anonymous)

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Differences

During my recovery meeting today I remained silent and listened to the other members of the group bring up issues that were bothering them, the main issue being their perception that they had made mistakes and I was reminded how different I am from the majority. Personally, I don’t think there are mistakes, just choices that have unintended outcomes. We always learn from those choices and we have no idea if the outcomes are desirable or not in the long run. Irene Claremont deCastillejo said it well when she wrote "Scientists discover and theologians affirm; but faced with the mystery of life and death we know almost nothing." I also kept thinking of the comment Richard Pries made several years ago, that "Nothing matters very much and very few things matter at all".

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Listening

Because of my disability I speak very slowly with very poor diction and enunciation so it is a chore for people to listen to me and particularly my slowness gives me a chance to observe how most people listen. I have noticed that when I talk people instantly make up stories about what I am saying and then pay more attention to their story, than what I am saying. For example, if I am cooking and begin relating something about a dream I had a few nights ago, Maria, my wife, might make up a story about what I am cooking and have trouble realizing that what I am saying does not fit. I, of course, do the same, often tending to believe my story rather than the reality going on around me. I work on my listening skills. "Listening is a far more difficult process than most people imagine; really to listen in the way that is meant by the masters is to let go utterly of ourselves, to let go of all the information, all of the concepts, all the ideas and all the prejudices that our heads are stuffed with." (Sogyal Rinpoche)

Monday, October 8, 2018

My Effort

Trying to change attitudes and choices that other people make in a loving, positive, long-term and sustainable direction feels like an uphill battle tonight. I attempt to be a living example but when I go shopping like I did this morning I am bombarded by merchants selling things of little real value and trying to get me to spend my money. The same happens when I watch TV or listen to the radio. When I read the paper I learn about various harmful choices being made. Meanwhile I conduct myself within my "bubble of love" and do the best I can to be an example.  "From everywhere, it seems, we are bombarded with the idea that our nature is innately violent, that our chief preoccupation is with our sexuality, and that our main purpose in life is the acquirement of ever more nifty possessions.......Indeed, it is only through the practice of inner silence that we can begin to disentangle ourselves from our culture and its illusions. (Daniel A. Seeger)

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Faith

Today I was honored to be visited by the spirit of one of my teachers from social work school. At that time we talked about spiritual matters and he encouraged my spiritual tendencies during a time when there was a strong belief in evidence based science to the exclusion of the spiritual approaches. It was not safe to talk of spiritual matters. I did not know it at the time but I was just scratching the surface and had barely begun my exploration but as Elizabeth Ostrander Sutton says "I cannot create when I choose the path that separates me from God. But when I consent, I soar for I have opened the door of creation." That was 1993 or 4 and I or we have come a long way since then and the importance of spirituality for mental health is now recognized and openly talked about. "Faith, then, means putting trust in a process that slowly builds an intimate relationship with someone I can neither see nor fully understand, but only feel. Living a life of faith implies being in continual contact with God and opening up to being searched and known."

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Silent Time

I need a large amount, several hours, of quiet time each day during which I contemplate, meditate or just sit and sort out my thoughts. I may spend about 25% of that time on day-to-day worldly concerns and the rest on current spiritual matters, such as my mentoring of others or my various types of communication. If I do not get enough quiet time I feel off balance and know something is missing. I notice that I can indulge in some sort of relaxation, like watching a movie, and feel like I am wasting valuable time which would be better spent just sitting in silence, so I generally turn off the movie and sit. "It [inner silence] is to establish an inner peace, an inner harmony, which will allow us authentically to contribute to the establishment of an outer peace and an outer harmony in the world at large." (Daniel A. Seeger)

Friday, October 5, 2018

Helping Change

I lead a life of being of service to others and I am empathic, understanding, inclusive and loving. I am also aware of, largely unexpressed, selfish, self-centered egotistical tendencies which were acted upon in my younger times. I was able to move away from the way I was when younger because of an atmosphere of love, understanding and encouragement which was given to me. At the present time I witness lying, stealing, manipulating and racism in the authority figures around me, usually driven by selfish, self-centered and egotistical motives. I find that I cannot condemn them since I was the same but I can and do extend love, understanding and empathy. In the Dhammapada the Buddha teaches that in this world hate never dispels hate. Only love dispels hate.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Dealing With Issues

During my recovery meetings and through my work with others I keep hearing about people being upset over the fact that other people close to them are angry with them or simply that people close to them are having difficulties. Using the second of the three questions; (Would I do this in front of God [or whatever you call the power or force behind the Universe]?; Is my name really on it [or is it really my responsibility]?; Will this increase the integrity of the universe [or is this action motivated by love, rather than fear, acting out of love always increases the integrity of the universe]?) I have realized that beyond being empathic, listening and being supportive, their issues are theirs, not mine — frequently even if they are angry with me. The last of the three questions leads me to self-care as being the loving activity I am responsible for.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Silent Connection

Today I just went about my daily activities feeling Love and gratitude for all things, making brief, largely non-verbal, connections and being largely silent with lots of loving eye contact. I began my day in the usual fashion with a dawn ceremony greeting and blessing the day and the plants in my yard. After oatmeal I went shopping and enjoyed the many non-verbal connections. I spent most of the afternoon cutting up vegetables and cooking. This has been a very enjoyable and peaceful day. "To understand better the value of silence in daily life, and its relation to this spiritual transformation for which we yearn, it is useful first to consider the limitation of language, of words. It is next useful to contemplate the limitations of logical reasoning." (Daniel A. Seeger)

Monday, October 1, 2018

Presence

I first encountered the awesome force or presence I now know as God while sitting on a narrow ridge near the top of Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina. Maria, my wife, and I had been hiking up the "back country" side of the mountain during one of our backpacking vacations. It was an overwhelming feeling of love, power, presence, strength and peace which Maria felt as well, quite a gift. That was back around 1985 and I did not believe in much of anything, but that got my attention. I, of course, had no idea of the life which was coming. "Jesus said, ‘I am the light which is before all things. It is I who am all things. From me all things came forth, and to me all things extend. Split a piece of wood, and I am there; lift up the stone, and you will find me.’" from the gospel of Thomas.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Peace

After our period of silent worship this morning Maria and I stopped to visit a nearby graveyard. It was a very peaceful setting in a rural area down the road from some big, expensive homes. Most of the markers were from the 1800s or early 1900s with one that I saw dated 2000. The spirits wanted to get to know me before communicating with me so I sat and invited them to probe me, which they did. According to Maria they were pleased and I plan to return in a week or so — why, I do not know. Before leaving there was a family of beautiful red-tailed hawks soaring above us and then a large Accipiter flapped its way across the sky. All-in-all it was a wonderful experience.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Change

I hesitate to say this, but there may be a shift happening in the direction of love, peace, understanding and compassion. It seems that we have been going through a period of hate, anger and fear which has been spearheaded by our presidential administration and other leaders around the world. Those leaders and ours brought us to an important "bottom" of sorts. It appears to me that the bottom scared enough people that the tide is now shifting. I am hopeful and we shall see. "It is not that the demonic forces within the unconscious are not capable of destruction and disintegration. It is rather that within the mystery of the conjunction of opposites their sting can be drawn, their poison drained, and their very energy harnessed to realize a more profound individuation. (John Yungblut)

Friday, September 28, 2018

I Am

I have been listening to the news the last couple of days and today I was talking to someone about a beating in public where the victim called for help and no-one responded, both producing a pretty dark view of our current status. I began looking at the world through an earthly, temporal lens rather than the eternal, "I am" lens which Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj writes about. The I am part of each of us knows that using the eternal view, everything is unfolding well and we are moving in a loving direction, even when the short term view looks dark. The I am part has always been there and is firmly rooted in love. As did Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, I access that part through meditation. "[Jesus said,] ‘Blessed is the one who came into being before he came into being.’" (from the gospel of Thomas)

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Broadcasting

Today I spent time focusing on and broadcasting the feeling of God or, if you prefer, the intense feeling of unconditional Love. I did that on my own while meditating in my living room and also several times while at a recovery meeting, each being a small, but very important, part of my day. It feels great when I do that and I am "stronger" than I used to be — but, I feel, not as strong as I will be. My goal is to be able to alter the energy field around people such that they can readily get past any negative thoughts or feelings and feel the Love. I have succeeded in doing that several times in the past and wish to develop and better control the ability. Time to work on that!

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Balance

Today I spent several hours preparing a big batch (5-6 gallon) of vegetable soup. I also exercised for a couple of hours, mentored one person, made dinner and had several periods of rest and meditation. All that may not sound like a big deal for a normal person but I was very conscious of both pushing myself and staying within my own limitations. It is important for me to balance pushing myself and recognizing my limitations if I wish to remain functional within my disability. When I over do it I can injure myself or get overly tired and if I don’t push I tend to become less able, a direction I do not wish to go. Today I was successful at maintaining a balance.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Disruptive People

Over the last several days I have had many opportunities to express, once again, that it is healing for all concerned to address angry, disruptive or hurtful people with compassion, love and understanding. They have probably been hurt enough and do not need even polite, justified jabs from us. There is no need for us to take their comments personally and they will benefit from compassion, love and understanding. My immediate tendency is to strike back verbally but if I stay quiet and go off by myself to calm down and reflect, everyone benefits. "In the Dhammapada the Buddha teaches that in this world hate never dispels hate. Only love dispels hate."

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Sacred Space

This morning I had the honor of being part of a "Sacred (God?) Space" where people felt able to talk and feel things they had never felt or said before, a memorable and loving experience. The occasion was our reading group and all the members of the group took part in creating (allowing) the Sacred Space in the manner of the deCastillejo quote I presented a few days ago. "In those rare moments when all the opposites meet within a man, good and also evil, light and also darkness, spirit and also body, brain and also heart, masculine focused consciousness and at the same time feminine diffuse awareness, wisdom of maturity and childlike wonder; when all are allowed and none displaces any other in the mind of a man, then that man, though he may utter no word is in an attitude of prayer. Whether he knows it or not his own receptive allowing will affect all those around him; rain will fall on the parched fields, and tears will turn bitter grief to flowering sorrow, while stricken children dry their eyes and laugh."

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Struggle

Today was one of those days when life feels like a struggle — so I did it anyway. I have chosen a rigorous spiritual path and have been given many gifts as a result. I would have it no other way but today the path just feels difficult and demanding. I often feel great joy, but today I do not — which seems to be part of this path. I simply did the things I normally do — knowing that "this too shall pass". I am now writing about it though I would rather not and would rather be upbeat. "To get we must also give, to advance we must also surrender, to gain we must lose, to attain we must resign. From the nature of things life means choice and selection, and every positive choice negates all other possibilities." (Rufus Jones)

Friday, September 21, 2018

Growth

In preparation for our reading group I have been re-reading the "Refiner’s fire" section of the book Our Life is Love: The Quaker Spiritual Journey, written by Marcelle Martin. In this section she writes of God’s cleansing or purifying a person of any ideas or attitudes that do not fit within compassion, love and God. She often refers to God’s judgment and this shift being a painful realization process for many people. In my connection with God I find God’s Love to be absolute and unconditional, meaning any judgement does not come from God and is probably of human origin. As a species we are very good at judgment and criticism — we are learning about acting out of love.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Rainmaker Ideal

For many years now I have followed a path that I call the "Rainmaker Ideal", attempting to achieve its openness.  I first encountered the ideal in the beautiful writings of Irene Claremont deCastillejo. As she stated "We have forgotten how to allow. The essence of the Rainmaker is that he knows how to allow. The Rainmaker walks in the middle of the road, neither held back by the past nor hurrying towards the future, neither lured to the right nor to the left, but allowing the past and the future, the outer world of the right and the inner images of the left all to play upon him while he attends, no more than attends, to the living moment in which these forces meet.

In those rare moments when all the opposites meet within a man, good and also evil, light and also darkness, spirit and also body, brain and also heart, masculine focused consciousness and at the same time feminine diffuse awareness, wisdom of maturity and childlike wonder; when all are allowed and none displaces any other in the mind of a man, then that man, though he may utter no word is in an attitude of prayer. Whether he knows it or not his own receptive allowing will affect all those around him; rain will fall on the parched fields, and tears will turn bitter grief to flowering sorrow, while stricken children dry their eyes and laugh." I have found on numerous occasions that my presence and this level of allowing have a remarkable healing effect on people. Speaking is difficult for me and it often seems that my silent presence is enough.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Self-care

In terms of my own recuperation after the retreat I made the very conscious choice to be easy on myself today and do things that supported my recovery. I did a lot of exercising, some cooking, some meditating and some quiet resting. I must admit that I thought about pushing myself to do more cooking, but did not.  During the retreat I went through several days of intensive giving through service and surrender to the powers of the universe and it is now time to rest. I am reminded that "To get we must also give, to advance we must also surrender, to gain we must lose, to attain we must resign. From the nature of things life means choice and selection, and every positive choice negates all other possibilities." (Rufus Jones)

Monday, September 17, 2018

Gratitude

So ends another retreat and I am very grateful for the wonderful weekend and equally grateful it is over and I am back in MD. During the retreat I was lovingly directive with the participants never losing my total commitment to their growth and welfare. In working with people on the retreat it felt like I had no choice other than my total commitment to their welfare, right to the end. I was also given "the power to carry it out" and felt great love during the whole process. I was not even aware of how exhausted I was — until it was over and then I did not want to interact with anyone. Now I go through a period of recuperation. I am reminded of the words of Irene Claremont deCastillejo when she wrote "For there to be a meeting, it seems as though a third, a something else, is always present. You may call it Love, or the Holy Spirit. Jungians would say that it is the presence of the Self. If this 'Other' is present, there cannot have failed to be a meeting."

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Last Entry

This will be my last entry until Monday the 17th. This evening I am in the retreat "zone", a condition which tells me this retreat is important for some reason. I may or may not know why the retreat is important and I am good with that. I will allow and be present. I do feel the Presence of some force I will call God. I am also confident that I will get the necessary guidance and all I need to do is listen and act accordingly. I have been excitedly packing and now I just feel at peace. I particularly look forward to being along the shoreline of the Sea of Cortez at dawn for the next few mornings, performing a dawn ceremony and meditation,

Monday, September 10, 2018

Peace

Yesterday I was anxious and scattered and right now I am at peace though nothing external to me has changed except that I am one day closer to the things that were causing most of my disturbance. The reason for my shift is that I explored what was troubling me during meditation by allowing the feelings and understanding them. I wrote and talked about the anxiety in a very open and loving way. I recall the first time I followed the same process with my own anger. I actually felt cheated because the anger passed so quickly, not allowing me to build up a head of steam. "When the diverse living energies of the human system are harmonized, the present bloody face of the world will be transformed into an image of the face of God." (A.B. Schmookler)

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Scattered

Tonight I am scattered! Normally I scan through my day and my quotes looking for any spiritual lesson that "jumps out" at me to write about in this blog. Today I have been visiting with my in-laws, dealing with finances, preparing for shopping and making some last minute preparations for the coming retreat. In short, I have gotten hooked in to life. Time to relax and trying to meditate. "indeed, it is only through the practice of inner silence that we can begin to disentangle ourselves from our culture and its illusions. (Daniel A. Seeger)

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Listening

I attended a family gathering of my in-laws today during which my mother-in-law noted that she was losing her hearing and missed many of the words being spoken. I pointed out that she could still listen between the words and that a great deal of communication takes place there in the unspoken. I did not elaborate so my point was lost but during any conversation there is an exchange of energy and often a joining of energy fields which, unlike the spoken word, is honest and a major part of the communication. It is possible to pay attention to the unspoken. Words can lie while the unspoken cannot. "To understand better the value of silence in daily life, and its relation to this spiritual transformation for which we yearn, it is useful first to consider the limitation of language, of words. "(Daniel A. Seeger)

Friday, September 7, 2018

Connection

When I communicate with inhabitants of the unseen realm, spirits and trees, I first meditatively connect with God’s power and Love, then telepathically show them what that power and Love feel like so they can feel it themselves and then pass it on. I have also succeeded in showing that power and Love to living humans at least twice. In each case with living people they were about to die and their knowing helped their transition. In order to show them I generated and allowed that power and Love to pass through me, an unforgettable and intense experience. I had to connect with the God part of myself and God, then allowing myself to be enveloped in that Love and power, an experience impossible to explain. "There are, says saint John of the Cross, encounters with God such that the devil cannot possibly counterfeit them, nor can one’s imagination create them. Some are so indelibly imprinted in the center of one’s being that they can neither be described nor forgotten."

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Gifts

Yesterday I wrote of one of the many gifts I have received from God during the process of my life. We all receive gifts, usually as a result of overcoming some sort of challenge or difficulty. In my case the difficulties usually came in the form of pain or fear and, in some way, associated with my disability. In the past I needed pain or fear to motivate me but now I also listen to the more positive love voice. According to Marianne Williamson "We will be given every opportunity to learn through joy, and when we deny ourselves that, we will learn through pain. But we will learn." Right now, as a result of those gifts, I live in a world of joy and love. She goes on to write "If you can rise above the fear in your life and live the love within you, and if I can rise above my fear and live the love in me-----if that drama is reenacted enough times by enough of the world’s people-----then we will pierce the cosmic darkness and tip the world in the direction of light."

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Blessing

My niece (in-law?) just had a baby and the three of them will be visiting with my other in-laws in a few days. Maria and I will be visiting with them. I will have an opportunity to bless the new baby and, possibly do some loving, probing and connecting with her. I will let her know how much I love her and let her know how special she is, also acknowledging that I am special and allowing her to probe me, as deeply as she wishes. The only outward evidence of the blessing and probing is usually that the baby will stare at me and, often, smile. Inwardly, it feels like an honor to be able to do that and I will probably sense her pure, sweet, loving power. I first learned of this gift perhaps fifteen years ago and have done it numerous times since. No-one is usually aware of the process except the mothers have often apologized for the child staring.

Monday, September 3, 2018

Love Force

Benjamin Friedman points out that "When material progress falters........people become more jealous of their status relative to others. Anti-immigrant sentiment typically increases, as does conflict between races and classes; concern for the poor tends to decline." It seems apparent that what he describes fits the conditions in this country right now and also many of the political decisions being made. The choices being made are regrettable and totally understandable. I believe that it would be better for everything and everyone if the decisions were made based on faith, love and recognition of the oneness I mentioned yesterday. I will continue to talk about the Love force at every opportunity!

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Connection

In the sweat lodge we referred to the earth as our mother and it was there that I began to think of the plants and animals as my brothers and sisters. It feels like everything and everyone are all connected as one. When I walk outside or during my dawn ceremony I can also feel the Presence of the loving force I call God. It feels glorious and I am extremely grateful to be aware and feel the connection.  "I tell you, I am in every flower, every rainbow, every star in the heavens, and everything in and on every planet rotating around every star. I am the whisper of the wind, the warmth of your sun, the incredible individuality and the extraordinary perfection of each snowflake. I am the majesty in the soaring flight of eagles, and the innocence of the doe in the field; the courage of lions, the wisdom of the ancient ones." (Neale Donald Walsch, G. P., )

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Listening

This morning during my recovery meeting I was planning to request a "group conscience" in order to discuss what I thought was the need for the meeting to be more rigid in its adherence to traditional recovery — But when I got there I felt compelled to wait and listen. I was concerned that my desire of calling for that group conscience and being more rigid was motivated by ego fears and not love based. My plan did not feel right so I kept quiet and listened. There were two very new people at the meeting, one of them still detoxing. They each expressed their gratitude and were obviously helped by the looseness of the meeting. They had each attended more traditionally rigid meetings and clearly benefitted from our looser approach. I think I will remain quiet. "It [inner silence] is to establish an inner peace, an inner harmony, which will allow us authentically to contribute to the establishment of an outer peace and an outer harmony in the world at large." (Daniel A. Seeger)

Friday, August 31, 2018

Guidance

Two days ago I wrote of putting the final touches on the coming retreat and, like everything else in my life, seeking guidance for my words and actions. Within that guidance I then choose what, if any, action to take, exercising my free will. Having experienced negative consequences by going against that guidance numerous times, I now follow that guidance. Generally I enter into a period of meditation with a request for guidance and wait until I feel right or clear about a response. If the question persists and clarity does not come, I do nothing.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Retreat

Today I was making some final preparations for a four day (1½ travel, 2½ actual retreat) spiritual retreat I will be leading in Mexico during the middle of September, part of my effort to change the world "one person at a time". There will be approximately ten people there and I will make an effort to be a loving, Godly presence as I loosely guide them for the weekend. The theme will be developing the God seed in each of us. I will be passing on what I have been given, which feels like the least I can do. We will also be located on the shore of the Sea of Cortez, near Rocky Point, a pleasant and vibrant location. I look forward to greeting the earth and the animals at dawn as I sit and meditate along the shoreline.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Near-Death-Experience

One of the things I was told during my Near-Death-Experience in 2006 was "This is what it feels like to be dead", a feeling of very powerful, cleansing, healing and pure unconditional love — much stronger than anything of human origin. I have since come to understand that feeling is there as part of the atmosphere all of the time, while the appearance and what happens shifts. I have found that, with God’s help, I can generate something close to that feeling and then pass it on. I channel and generate that feeling when doing s healing. "A mystical touch is a deep, intimate contact-union-experience of God in one of His attributes such as power, light, goodness, beauty, or joy." (Thomas Dubay, S. M.)

Monday, August 27, 2018

Differences

I was watching the movie "Divergent" tonight about a young woman who did not fit nicely into any single behavioral category and had problems because of it. She was a miss-fit which caused her difficulties. Admittedly, I have not been calm and sweet about it, but I too have been considered to be a miss-fit. Throughout my life, beginning when I was quite young, many people have tried to "correct" my behavior which I experienced as not being understood or accepted. I now consider myself to be an independent individual with a strong, loving respect for people’s differences. I encourage and value differences, partly because I know what it feels like to not be accepted. "To resign one’s self to the fact that one must travel much in the dark and be greatly sifted and tossed about is an inevitable step in the way of spiritual growth." (Gilbert Kilpack)

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Action

In my efforts to lead what Patricia Loring calls a discerned life and "changing the things I can", I find that I am most comfortable with the "humble and hidden activities" she speaks of, since there is less chance of offending anyone. I am now in a situation which will require "bold and dramatic action", which I have been putting off until I knew how to do it in a loving and respectful way. Previously I have only thought of ways to confront this person in an angry, judgmental way, which would serve no-one (but be justified and self-righteous!). "It requires even more discernment to discover whether the ministry called for from a particular individual in a particular instance requires prophetic speech, humble and hidden activities, bold and dramatic action, professional service or some, novel and previously unimagined course."

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Balance

Patricia Loring commented that "To undertake to live a discerned life, to endeavor daily to be attuned to authentic movements of the Spirit leading us into greater fullness of life, is a strenuous undertaking." My life is always shifting so the balance required to live the "discerned life" she speaks of also changes. A few months ago it became clear that I needed more relaxation and "me" time so I began watching a few movies each week on my computer. Right now the weather is cooling off a bit (low 80s rather than low 90s) so it is possible, once again, to work in the garden, a peaceful distraction for me. I am also continuing with my other spiritually nourishing activities like meditation, recovery and Quaker meetings, working with people, reading and writing. Leading a discerned life is, indeed, a "strenuous undertaking" but well worth it. I find that I am always listening for possible life changes during meditation time. And never totally comfortable.

Friday, August 24, 2018

Conflicts

A substantial part of the incredible richness of the human experience stems from our potential internal conflicts and how we resolve those conflicts (free will). Our conflicts result from dualities like fear versus faith, temporal vs. eternal or short term vs. long-term. Within those and other dualities we have choices. The choices we make contribute to our growth and also reflect that growth. During my process I have made all sorts of choices and now choose the direction of love, faith and the eternal. As Walsch says in a comment he attributes to God "Embrace every circumstance, own every fault, share every joy, contemplate every mystery, walk in every man’s shoes, forgive every offense (including your own), heal every heart, honor every person’s truth, adore every person’s God, protect every person’s rights, preserve every person’s dignity, promote every person’s interests, provide every person’s needs, presume every person’s holiness, present every person’s greatest gifts, produce every person’s blessing, and pronounce every person’s future secure in the assured love of God."

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

One Master

When I am wrapped up in fear I lose the Kingdom or the feeling of being surrounded by a bubble of love — not that it goes anywhere but I do. I also lose that Presence when I become to enamored with or attached to material possessions. I can and do certainly participate in earthly things, just not attempt to make them more than transitory, relatively meaningless, but pleasurable events or possessions. This sort of attitude in me makes it difficult for me to fit into this culture at times, but that’s fine. I agree with St. Augustine’s comment that "we cannot serve two masters. But a man does try to serve two masters if he seeks both the kingdom of God for the great good it is and those other temporal things."

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

The Kingdom

That the kingdom of God, the Presence and power of unconditional Love, is both within and all around me is an astounding fact of life. I even felt it as a child, though not as acutely as I do today. As a child I also did not realize that I was part of that force, that it was within me or that I could connect with it as deeply as I do today. I find it amazing that Jesus said "The kingdom of God is not coming with signs that can be observed, nor will they say; ‘Look here it is!’ or ‘There it is!’ for the kingdom of God is within you." and yet I was always told to search for the kingdom in external things. I also always sensed that it was out of my reach not that the kingdom was all around me and I could connect with it. "Jesus also said, ‘I am the light which is before all things. It is I who am all things. From me all things came forth, and to me all things extend. Split a piece of wood, and I am there; lift up the stone, and you will find me.’"

Monday, August 20, 2018

Spiritual Awakening

In today’s recovery meeting our theme was that "there is a solution" to our drug and/or alcohol problem, a topic that I love and became quite emotional about. The solution is a "spiritual awakening" which is not necessarily a religious experience or one that involves a belief in God. One of the people in the meeting was an atheist and one believed in a loving, supportive pink unicorn. In my case I found a loving power I choose to call God but the fact is that it does not matter what name a person uses. I found a very powerful and practical power and have support and guidance for all aspects of life. Today I was amused by the thought of my going into a doctors office and explaining that I have done so well with my disability because I found a spiritual solution. I have done that — and will continue. In most cases they just assume I was miss-diagnosed since my outcome is impossible with that diagnosis. Sigh!

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Self-Care

Today was a "Charlie" day, meaning I took it easy, relaxed and did some things to pamper myself, an important part of my spiritual path. I had two sausage burritos and some oatmeal cookies for breakfast, went to a recovery meeting, had an egg sandwich for lunch, watched a movie on my computer and meditated. I did not meet with or work wit6h anyone. It was a good day of self-care. It’s important for me to realize when I need to take a break if I am to continue on my path. "Let’s be clear that "being at the spiritual game" means dedicating your whole mind, your whole body, your whole soul to the process of creating Self in the image and likeness of God. This is the process of Self realization about which Eastern mystics have written. It is the process of salvation to which much Western theology has devoted itself. This is a day-to-day, hour-to-hour, moment-to-moment act of supreme consciousness. It is a choosing and a re-choosing every instant. It is ongoing creation. Conscious creation. Creation with a purpose. It is using the tools of creation we have discussed, and using them with awareness and sublime intention.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

God's Love

Several years ago I prayed to see things the way God does and that prayer was granted so I now truly embrace (not always enjoy!) the human condition. I look at myself and the people around me through the lense of love as perfectly imperfect. I know we are young and growing. I look on events like those I mentioned yesterday as miss-steps while I am learning and doing the best I can. Those miss-steps actually increase my appreciation for the purity, strength and power of God’s Love. I am very grateful for that love and the fact that m miss-steps had no impact on it.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Guilt and Shame

I keep encountering, what is frequently called, "Catholic guilt" in the people I talk to, meaning a feeling of guilt or shame over past behaviors. Personally, I have done many unfortunate or harmful things in my life including; lying, stealing, manipulating, having a brief affair with a married woman and doing my part of causing two abortions. I regret these things and now do everything I can to make amends. I feel no guilt or shame, but rather view my younger self as I might a warm, stupid puppy, with compassion, understanding, low expectations and forgiveness since I was clumsy and knew no better. Those circumstances are all part of my growth. "Every circumstance------no matter how painful-----is a gauntlet thrown down by the universe, challenging us to become who we are capable of being." (Williamson)

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Peace

Through my limited TV watching (I don’t have a TV), reading the Washington Post and living near DC, I keep hearing about protests over various concerns. I certainly applaud the concerns and passion. I too feel very deeply about what is happening in this world. My concern is that during these protests anger, violence and hate are frequently expressed and that is not a path that will lead to truth, love, compassion and understanding, peace and justice for all. These two approaches represent two sides of each one of us and anger, violence and hate never leads to truth, love, compassion and understanding and peace. Resolution will only come through love. "In the Dhammapada he [the Buddha] teaches that in this world hate never dispels hate. Only love dispels hate."

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Gratitude

Through my talking with others today I have been led to recall the experiences, trials and tribulations I have been through for the last thirty or so years. As I wrote to one person ‘Even thoughts of the journey make me feel tired --- it’s been long and hard". I have gradually been taught to lead a loving, attentive life and I now have great joy each day, in spite of the nuisance of my disability. As st. John of the Cross pointed out "Speaking of touches, the delights they engender more than compensate for all the trials suffered in life, even though innumerable". On one hand I wouldn’t wish my path on anyone and on the other hand I am very grateful for my life.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Love 2

To me, love is a force very much like gravity or magnetism are forces. Love originates with God and, as I said yesterday, "the nature of love is to grow and spread", meaning anything it touches tends to become loving, like watering the God seed in each of us. Using the three questions (Would I do this in front of God [or whatever you call the power or force behind the Universe]; Is my name really on it [or is it really my responsibility]; Will this increase the integrity of the universe [or is this action motivated by love, rather than fear, acting out of love always increases the integrity of the universe]), I strive to say or do the loving thing at all times, which of course, I cannot do, but it’s fun to try.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Love

Today, Sunday, at our regular meeting for worship two of the young people who have been attending our Thursday meeting joined us, affirming what we are doing on Thursdays. We have tried to be open, welcoming and loving to all. The two young people were one white male and a black female with wonderful dreadlocks, both vegan and neither typical for this community. I was reminded that the nature of love is to grow and spread. "If love is ever to reach and move and transform anyone with its wonderful impalpable power it must be a real love expressed in a real life."(Rufus Jones)

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Truth And Love

Today Maria and I went to see "Newsies", a play put on by wonderfully energetic local teens from a theatrical summer camp. The play was inspirational in that truth, love and compassion triumphed over big money and the power structure. It was fun to watch. The play supported my efforts to always act out of love and with God’s guidance believing that the outcome will be good, regardless of events along the way. I often feel that the odds are stacked against me which I need yo remember makes no difference as long as I stay true to my path.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Acceptance

Today I encountered two individuals that, with company backing, lied to me and then tried to manipulate me for company profit. I suspect they each knew they were lying but, having been through this scenario many times before, I doubt they would admit it. I am reminded of a time in 2003 when I purchased my car and told the salesman repeatedly that I wanted him to be honest with me only to be assured that he was being. He wasn’t, as I kept pointing out to him which he never denied. In that case I broke down and lied back. I played his game, lowered the price of my car considerably, and compromised myself in the process. Today I did not compromise myself or give in to them. I also chose to not confront them, knowing it would be pointless and only add to my frustration. They were simple humans doing their best to survive within this milieu. "Only a few achieve the colossal task of holding together, without being split asunder, the clarity of their vision alongside an ability to take their place in a materialistic world." (Irene Claremont deCastillejo)

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

God Or Love Seed

Tonight I have been reflecting on the "God or Love seed" within each of us that I write about in my book and is so prevalent in Quaker writings and belief. For myself, numerous Quakers and mystics within all religions or none, God or Love is an experiential reality, not just a belief. It is a powerful and wonderful force to be part of. It is also a force that I am only beginning to understand and probably never will. That reality is why I comment that the name a person uses makes no difference. There is no defensive ego personality to care what name you use — only love. The nature of Love is to grow and create more love, which is why I do what I do. "That God is both utterly beyond me and yet totally within me at the same time is the exquisite balance that most religion seldom achieves..." (R. Rohr a Franciscan mystic)

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Acceptance

My own physical healing has only gone so far and, like I said yesterday, "I suspect for some reason I do not understand, yet." I am still disabled, though not as severely as I once was and I still have my jaw dystonia, impairing my jaw coordination and control. I am also still bald and, at times, old and creaky. I believe that I am open to complete physical wellness and I know that level of wellness to be possible. For some reason which I do not know it is necessary for me to experience my challenges for now. I feel accepting of what is handed to me and am at peace with that, while still pursuing more. I am always on the lookout for psychological factors holding me back. My meditation and contemplation are good for that.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Healing

When I speak or write about "healing" I am referring to an energetic shift to a condition of harmony, love and wholeness within the soul or essence of an individual. I can promote such a shift by channeling and sending love energy into the person, in the manner described yesterday. The energetic healing sometimes also results in restoring physical wellness, though not always. In my case, regarding my disability, I believe that I have been healed since I have that feeling of harmony, love and wholeness yet I still have obvious symptoms of a disability. My symptoms are not as severe as they once were, but still present — I suspect for some reason I do not understand, yet. I am open to getting rid of my remaining symptoms and, meanwhile, I enjoy the harmony.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Spiritual Healing

I make use of the healing power of God/Love to maintain my physical health at least daily and more often when addressing a specific issue, its one of those things that I don’t really understand but do anyway. I am a spiritual healer and get miraculous results in terms of what I originally thought possible. I now know different. Today I showed the technique to someone else which I have also done before. I told her to begin by focusing on the feeling of love using any of various images of puppies, babies or kittens. Then, using intent, to funnel that feeling into her hands and, again using intent, to send that energy or feeling from her hands into the area needing healing, while touching that area. I also told her to ask God or Jesus for help (she is Christian). "One by one we move beyond conceptions of ourselves, just as we pass beyond metaphors, symbols, and conceptions of God on the way into unmediated, unknowing, intimate relationship with the source of our being." (Patricia Loring)

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Silence

I spent a good part of today in silent, peaceful meditation and contemplation for it is within the silence that I connect with the loving force I call God. Within the silence I can quiet my brain in order to feel the Presence and its healing powers for the physical problems I have been having. Today I experienced the silence while sitting in my recliner, I can also do this on a peaceful day, outside and the experience is generally stronger in a group setting like a meeting of the Friends. "To understand better the value of silence in daily life, and its relation to this spiritual transformation for which we yearn, it is useful first to consider the limitation of language, of words. It is next useful to contemplate the limitations of logical reasoning." (Daniel A. Seeger)

Friday, August 3, 2018

Pain

Today my pain has captured my attention. I choose not to think or talk about it much — it just is and the fact is that "I have some level of pain most of the time", usually just minor sores in my mouth from biting myself. I do not use medication very often, I use a combination of meditation, relaxation, service work and distraction. I find that when I meditate deeply on love or live within love, like when I write this Blog, I experience a great deal less pain. That is certainly true today — right now. Right now for the first time today, I do not feel like a "creaky old man".

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Love

Today I have been reflecting on love as a force right along with the accepted forces of gravitation and magnetism. Most obviously, I have used the force of love for physical healing and health but I believe love has other applications as well. I use the force of love daily, walking through life with it surrounding me. I do not understand it, but keep using it. As Sean Carroll comments in his book The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself.  "Even to ask such a question [How well do we know what we think we know?] is to admit that our knowledge, at least in part, is not perfectly reliable. This admission is the first step on the road to wisdom. He goes on to say "And when it comes to understanding the fundamental architecture of reality, none of us has complete information."

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Points Of View


Today, while speaking on the phone, in response to a comment about feeling fear, I commented that "there is absolutely nothing to be afraid of", which is true if a person is viewing reality through the lense of love, eternity and Presence. However, if a person looks at life through the lense of temporal, worldly ideas then fear seems totally reasonable. I choose to be aware of the potential of worldly, temporary pain or discomfort, while keeping my focus on love and eternity. "And though ideas such as these may seem unimportant in our bustling world, the testimony of seekers after life in all ages is that nothing is so important as the completion of our half-lives, the God-filling of our void." (Gilbert Kilpack)

Monday, July 30, 2018

Love

Today Maria, my wife, and I went to visit our nephew, his wife and two week old baby, our new grand-niece. When offered, I turned down the chance to hold the new-born but was able to touch her and bless her with Love the way I do. As a result the feeling of love within me increased, a win-win. I was reminded that the nature of Love is to spread and grow. I did my part and will continue. "Love is the force that increases the integrity of the universe. Whatever is required to do this is loving." (Shepherd Hoodwin)

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Choice

If I keep my focus on the God or Love seed within me by doing things like morning prayer and meditation then my day is harmonious and peaceful and my actions are impact full. If, however, I skip that part my day is likely to be a bit chaotic and stressful, a simple choice which I need to remember. The choice being difficult to keep in mind makes no logical sense since the consequences are so simple and black and white. But it was a difficult choice initially. My dawn ceremony and early prayer and meditation have now become a habit and part of my day. "‘That of God in every man’ is as a finger pointing to that of God which is infinitely more than the good in every man." (Gilbert Kilpack)

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Ego

I have often told the people I work with to pay attention when something causes them to "well up" and/or cry since this is often the subconscious’ way of saying "this is important to you". Then today I was watching a movie during which one character said to another "they will follow you". I need to pay attention since I welled up with tears when I heard that comment. There are many people who openly admire me and follow me closely. For the sake of my ego it is useful for me to realize that those people are actually admiring me together with the loving power that walks with me. This situation works for me and will continue as long as I stay humble and am careful about what I say and do. I have ample examples in my life of what this kind of admiration and power can do to a person — I would rather not go there.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Compassion

There was a fellow who today was banned from the Serenity Center, where I go for some of my recovery meetings. He was banned because of his disruptive behavior and not altering that behavior in spite of prior warnings. I agree with the decision since his behavior could discourage and be harmful to the newcomer. I also have empathy for him and will reach out to him, given the chance. It is important for me to realize that he and I are very similar, differing only in some brain chemicals. I, too, have self-centered, grandiose and anti-social thoughts but I choose and have the ability to not act on them. I also have difficulty, at times, in listening to the criticism and comments of others, but I am able to slow down, listen and remain quiet and respectful. He has a bit more difficulty in restraining himself. "Doing shadow-work means making a gentleman's agreement with one's self to engage in an internal conversation that can, at some time down the road result in an authentic self-acceptance and a real compassion for others." (Zweig and Abrams)

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Balance

Today was a day of moderate activity (exercise, recovery meeting, talking on the phone and meditating) mixed with periods of relaxation and restoration. I seldom enter into total relaxation or distraction and usually continue to think about my activities at a much reduced rate and intensity as I did today. I watched a movie while also having some thoughts and planning about my interaction with trees. I find this partial relaxation actually helps my creativity and the fruition of my thinking — it is also good self-care. I should also confess that when relaxing I always wonder if I should be doing more!

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

My Growth

Most of the time when I meditate I connect with and feel the strength, Love and power of God, a feeling that is a gift which I can then carry with me during the day. The feeling originates with God not me and, to use an analogy from baseball, the capability of connecting with and generating that feeling is my "home run". I also find that I can pass that feeling to other entities, though doing so is not totally under my control. I am the "instrument" or "organ" of its passage, not the one who decides and is truly in charge. At this point I have transmitted that feeling to spirits, most recently to trees and at least twice (probably more) to living people. My sense is that I could be a better channel with people by being more completely open and then allowing it. I am working on that! "There are encounters with God such that the devil cannot possibly counterfeit them, nor can one’s imagination create them. Some are so indelibly imprinted in the center of one’s being that they can neither be described nor forgotten." (St. John of the Cross)

Monday, July 23, 2018

Spiritual Quest

I bet everything on the single card of my spiritual connection and the guidance I find there. Originally I made that choice because I was desperate and having explored earthly possibilities I found nothing that could help me. For the last couple of decades I have been pursuing a greater connection and continued guidance not from desperation but because of the joy and peace I find there. "Immersion in God entails a being filled with Him, a divine inflowing. Biblical men knew well enough that this self-communication of God is the sole destiny of men." (Thomas Dubay, S. M.). I have an adequate income and possessions but have to keep it spare because of my acquisitive nature. If I have much money or possessions I get excited, focused on the material and want more. As St. Augustine says "we cannot serve two masters. But a man does try to serve two masters if he seeks both the kingdom of God for the great good it is and those other temporal things."

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Love

Words do not do the reality justice, but when Love is present it "desires" to create more Love, that is its nature and purpose. I live within a world of love and do everything I can to pass it on. I would like other people to feel that love, but also trees, stones, earth and everything else. The very human tendency and quest after "money, power and prestige" or technological distractions can block that love. I would like to overcome that tendency in others, leading to greater feeling of contentment and peace. "To the mystic he [God] becomes real in the same sense that experienced beauty is real, or the feel of spring is real, or that summer sunlight is real — he has been found, he has been met, he is present." (Rufus Jones)