A winter’s day, in a deep and dark December
I am alone, gazing from my window to the streets below
On a freshly fallen silent shroud of snow
I am a rock, I am an island
I’ve built walls, a fortress deep and mighty that none may penetrate
I have no need of friendship, friendship causes pain
It’s laughter and it’s loving I disdain
I am a rock, I am an island
Don’t talk of love well I’ve heard the words before
It’s sleeping in my memory
And I won’t disturb the slumber of feelings that have died
If I never loved I never would have cried
I am a rock, I am an island
I have my books and my poetry to protect me
I am shielded in my armor, hiding in my room, safe within my womb
I touch no one and no one touches me
I am a rock, I am an island
And a rock can feel no pain
And an island never cries
The importance of supportive people in our lives is essential for any growth to occur if you are feeling down and having trouble getting out of the situation you are in by yourself. We cannot rely upon our own voices when we are subject to a diminishing view of our affairs because we have the weight of our problems on our minds. Our voices may take us away from an uplifted path that keeps us focused and rational. We will often sabotage ourselves when these voices begin to take a dominant role in our thinking. We begin to doubt ourselves, and we will neglect important daily functions, and even neglect anything that is not imperative for our being able to function without others knowing about our hidden pain we keep from their acknowledgements.
As for myself, I know all to well the burdens of an inner voice that will push out supportive help in times that one can benefit from such influence. Why I continue to push others away is hard to say but it is still as painful as when I began this behavior during the time of my childhood many years ago. As an adult, I have relied upon those close to me, but at times I have not had anyone to give me any emotional cadence in my time of need. I don’t think it is for the same reasons that the Simon and Garfunkel song speak about; in that they reference a bitter unrequited love remark in the song I interpret as one that is of poetic sarcasm. On the other hand I can relate to coping by isolation from others, as it is an intentional strategy to remove oneself from the potential of discovery. The loss of trust in others can also bring about a failure to console with others.
Thus, we who think we are “islands” or “rocks” keep ourselves under the illusion that we do not need others to help us. We are in fact self-sufficient and can do without the interference of others. But this is only a lie we tell ourselves, a condition we impose to subsist without the help from others. In my experience this seldom works, and is only a reminder of how we need the connection of others to give us sound information when we fail to see things in a clearer light. We will lose ourselves in a fog of our own making if we cannot rely upon another sensibility, when we have forgotten our value and are challenged by a personal weakness of spirit.
What is most sad is that family members do not even know what is going on because of the nature of the relationship you are in. They may be oblivious to the precarious nature of your thoughts, and do not reach out, but even more despairing is that they do not even really notice. If you are indeed a good actor, you can fool them, which is fair to say that this is responsible for their nihilism of your condition.
The fact that so many people are living under such tribulation is testament to the widespread nature of this malady. The breakdown of the family, the problems of the current state of affairs in human governance; geopolitics, economics, world poverty, racial escalation of indifference, and business ethics are symptoms of a culture in retrograde. For these reasons alone the mind tells us that we cannot rely upon others. The castle cannot be built upon the sand, and we continue to live thinking that this is justifying our behavior and continue to live in isolation. But when all is said and done, we will never make a better vision unless we have the help from others who can right our errors of thinking. We must rely upon others given the right foundations, otherwise we will not live to see better days. We forget we can often be our worst enemy and be more brutal than the others we initially fear.
Understanding that the world can be a mad adventure, does not exclude that we must live under such conditions alone. We should seek out those to help support our sanity. Change can occur from resistance or from an inspirational fortitude. Metaphorically the rock is hard and unchanging, but truthfully a rock can still erode from other forces upon it. Removing the metaphoric analogy our strength does not come from being stoic and in isolation. Rather, if we join our forces with others, strength can again become our salvation in a time of need. Sealing our hearts off from the views of others may be the tale we tell ourselves to survive, and saving heartache is the reason for such a decision, but in truth we cannot use this kind of strategy for every occasion since we would dwindle our spirits down to an indistinguishable relic which would end up defining us as emotional apparitions.
Nay, we should learn to deal with this heartache and extend ourselves appropriately to others as to reignite our burning fires.
“To have faith is to trust yourself to the water. When you swim you don’t grab hold of the water, because if you do you will sink and drown. Instead you relax, and float.”
― Alan W. Watts
“It is more shameful to distrust our friends than to be deceived by them.”
“If you cannot trust yourself, you cannot even trust your mistrust of yourself – so that without this underlying trust in the whole system of nature you are simply paralyzed”
― Alan W. Watts
“Risks must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.”
― Leo Buscaglia
“The greatest disease in the West today is not TB or leprosy; it is being unwanted, unloved, and uncared for. We can cure physical diseases with medicine, but the only cure for loneliness, despair, and hopelessness is love. There are many in the world who are dying for a piece of bread but there are many more dying for a little love. The poverty in the West is a different kind of poverty — it is not only a poverty of loneliness but also of spirituality. There’s a hunger for love, as there is a hunger for God.”
― Mother Teresa, A Simple Path: Mother Teresa
We sometimes mistakenly believe that we are granted some fortune of providence if we follow the lessons of our faith. Problems often arise when we start to ask why do we have to endure such misery when contrary circumstances admit themselves into our lives and show us that all is not peaceful in the realm of man’s governance. At times we shut down our inquiries into leading happy lives, and become shadows of ourselves when we disband our alignment with trusted values and become lost in the pursuit of false promises. A loss of meaning may become dominant in our thinking if we allow these elements to take our attentions away from the qualities that bind us as human beings.
We may become lost in following a path that takes us away from recognizing the beautiful gifts we often neglect or fail to see in our lives. Thus when we suffer from some condition that causes us discomfort, some disease that causes us pain, we will appreciate the times when our bodies did not have to suffer under such conditions. This is an awakening that may or may not come to us, but if it does, it is as if a new door of discovery has opened again to us.
When you open your world up and begin to see just what you have been missing, you will immediately appreciate the feeling of what you are experiencing because it was sorely needed. A healthy environment, in opposition to an unhealthy one is a prime example of how we benefit in many ways from such distinctions. Disallowing the simple things that you can appreciate is not unlike starving yourself of nutritional values that nurture the soul. We sometimes become intensely focused on our careers, or some other focal activity that distracts us from the essential nourishing elements in our lives, and the result is the failure to see the forest through the trees. If this distraction is not attended with the presence of a balanced perspective within our lives, than we risk loosing sight of other amazing features that qualify a life as being fulfilled.
The affirmation of receiving our sight back after having an outdated prescription updated, as we re-experience the world with much more clarity in our vision is a tale that comes in many forms. We have ignored these illusive features right in front of us because we are engaged in other aspects in our life, and therefore we lose appreciation of some of the more fundamental yet beautiful things in our everyday lives.
The scent of our loved ones hair, and skin, or the sound of our children’s laughter are a point of contention. When you stop enjoying these basic human experiences, you have descended into the lowest kind of existence. You have inadvertently turned yourself against important human functions that ties you to the rest of humanity. This sacrifice may turn your perceptions that will lead you to question your former beliefs.
Take the examples of thinkers such as Friedrich Nietzsche or John Paul Sartre. Nietzsche created much of his philosophy when he lived his formidable years slowly succumbing to general paralysis of the insane (GPI; tertiary cerebral syphilis). Influenced by Arthur Schopenhauer, his claims were in direct contradiction to the values of the time. His ease in the world became clear when his philosophy projected himself outside of the world he was living in. One free of physical torment, and mental anguish.
Nietzsche’s enthusiasm for what he called “the transvaluation of all values” stemmed from his contempt for Christianity and the entirety of the moral system that flowed from it: indeed, “contempt of man”, as Nietzsche states near the end of The Antichrist. Nietzsche perceived the moral framework of Christian civilization to be oppressive: reproduction derided as sinful; life as a mere investment for the hollow promise of an illustrious afterlife; and death valued over life. The transvaluation of all values would mean the exaltation of life rather than the exaltation of suffering, and an acceptance of every instinct or lust as organic and therefore valid, and so beyond the scope of moral condemnation. What one desires would be merely what one desires, rather than either sinful or pious. What one desires would be the product of stimuli rather than the product of “will”.
With J.P. Sartre, we see another way of thinking by predicating meaning from existence. Much of his philosophy resulted from the influence of the phenomenology of Edmund Husserl and Martin Heidegger and his incarceration by the German army during his service in WWII before the French were liberated by the Allies.
Herbert Marcuse criticized Being and Nothingness (1943) by Jean-Paul Sartre for projecting anxiety and meaninglessness onto the nature of existence itself: “Insofar as Existentialism is a philosophical doctrine, it remains an idealistic doctrine: it hypostatizes specific historical conditions of human existence into ontological and metaphysical characteristics. Existentialism thus becomes part of the very ideology which it attacks, and its radicalism is illusory”.
In Letter on Humanism, Heidegger criticized Sartre’s existentialism:
Existentialism says existence precedes essence. In this statement he is taking existentia and essentia according to their metaphysical meaning, which, from Plato’s time on, has said that essentia precedes existentia. Sartre reverses this statement. But the reversal of a metaphysical statement remains a metaphysical statement. With it, he stays with metaphysics, in oblivion of the truth of Being.
Looking at the life works of such authors within their encapsulated “mindsets” has much to say about how they felt, and what they believed. So too is the average person’s philosophy when dealing with most topics that involve human emotion. We will find relevance in the arguments we subscribe to by relation of our influences, our logic, and our feelings. How that translates into how we live in the world will also be a challenge for us to undertake. A choice we must make either consciously or not. The dividends it yields in a life are contingent upon the philosophy that is exercised the most. Surely some things may not come to be in our expectation, but surely, some things just might be valued with proper perspectives and make life all that more enjoyable.
The God of Thunder, Thor (Donar), (from which we get Thursday), was almost as important as Odin, for he not only controlled the thunderbolt, but he was also the god of war. He was a rather rude, simple god, always ready to face danger and fight off the evil race of giants. He was thought of as being in charge of the peasants who fell in battle, while Odin was in charge of the nobles. Once when he came to a wide inlet which he could not cross, he accosted the ferryman, promising him some oatmeal, porridge, and herrings which he had in his sack if the ferryman would take him across. The man was actually Odin in disguise, and he jeered at the humble fare thus offered him. Thor tried to recount all the famous victories he had won against the giants, but Odin would come back with greater victories, totally unimpressed. So he had to walk the long way around, for Odin wouldn’t take a barefooted, penniless vagabond. He couldn’t use his magic hammer, Mjölnir, against the chief of the gods. This hammer was the thunderbolt, and its magic property was that it would always fly back to his hand after he had thrown it, and that it would never miss its mark. He also possessed a miraculous belt that doubled his strength when he put it on, and a pair of iron gloves that he wore when he threw his hammer.
One morning Thor woke up and discovered that his hammer was missing. He immediately summoned the mischievous god, Loki, to see if he knew anything about the theft. “It must have been taken by a giant,” he said, “but I will find it for you, never fear.” So saying, he put on a magic robe made of feathers and flew to the land of the giants. There he learned that the giant, Thrym, had hidden it eight fathoms below the earth, and the only way he would surrender it was if he were given the hand of the goddess of Love and Beauty, Freyja, in marriage. Since there was no way out of this predicament, Loki consented to tell the gods. They were horrified, but Loki had a plan. He suggested that Thor dress up to look like Freyja, and put on her gold necklace. After hesitating at first, Thor finally agreed, and the two set off for the land of the giants.
Thrym was so thrilled with the thought of his bride that he ordered the wedding banquet to be prepared at once. He was a bit surprised to see the bride wolf down a whole ox, eight large salmon, plus innumerable side dishes, as well as three barrels of mead. But Loki explained away his doubts by saying that the girl had been so nervous as the thought of her wedding she hadn’t been able to eat anything for days. This made Thrym all the more eager to get on with the ceremony and he leaned over in trying to kiss the “bride.” But when he saw the ruddy complexion and the eyes which flashed lightning, he backed away in dismay. Again Loki reassured him. She had been so upset she hadn’t slept for eight nights. The giant was so eager by now to consummate the marriage that he sent for the buried hammer, Mjölnir, and placed it on the bride’s knees, according to ancient custom. Laughing to himself triumphantly, Thor’s hand closed over his precious hammer. In a twinkling he downed all the giants and then joyously returned to the ranks of the Aesir with Loki.
The two gods had another even more exciting adventure together – the one time when Thor thought a giant had vanquished him. He and Loki, accompanied by two peasants, were walking all day in giant country, and by evening were thoroughly exhausted. In the forest they came upon a rather odd-looking house, with a front door as wide as the whole house, but it seemed serviceable and empty, and its shape did not seem important to them. They made themselves at home and fell asleep. At midnight, however, there was a terrible earthquake. The floor itched and tossed and the travelers woke up with a start and rushed out. All night they stayed awake in a nearby hut, keeping watch, but nothing else happened.
At daybreak, Thor looked and came upon a sleeping giant. Now he understood the reason for all the noise of the night before. He was furious, and just about to wake the huge creature up with a well-aimed blow of his hammer, when the giant leaped to his feet. “I am Skrymir.” he said, “and you are Thor. Where have you put my glove?” Taken aback at first, Thor suddenly realized that the house he and his friends had spent the night in was not a house at all, but the giant’s glove, and the shed they had moved to after the “earthquake” was the thumb of the glove! The giant said he would like to go with them, so all five went off together. In the evening Skrymir pretended he was completely worn out and fell asleep before supper. But when Loki and Thor attempted to untie their sack containing the store of provisions which the giant had carried during the day as a sign of friendliness, they found the knots were too tight to be undone at all. Right away, Thor knew who to blame for this turn of events, and he tried to wake up Skrymir. It was hopeless. In vain he pounded on the giant’s skull with the full force of his hammer. The sleepy Skrymir only half woke up complaining about bird droppings or acorns falling on his forehead. The four had to go to bed supper-less. In the morning Thor tried again, and this time the giant woke up, pretending to wipe off a leaf from his brow. He told the group he had to be on his way; they weren’t far from Utgard where they going anyhow. Then he disappeared.
When they reached Utgard toward midday, Thor went straight to the palace and demanded to be admitted. The giant king, Utgardaloki, said no one was permitted to enter until he had first proved himself by some famous deed. Loki immediately volunteered to prove his prowess. The giant king sent him one of the other giant, Logi, as an opponent in a great eating contest. They were served huge portions of meat on plates as big as vats. In less time than it takes to tell, Loki had devoured everything but the bones. His opponent, however, had eaten meat, bones, and the plate as well.
The peasant Thjalfi offered himself next. He claimed to be the swiftest runner in the world, but when the giant Hugi race against him, Thjalfi was left far behind, though he ran faster than lightning itself. When it came to Thor’s turn, he was convinced that he at least would be victorious in his contest. No one could drink as much or fast as he! Utagardaloki sent for the huge drinking horn which the giants were accustomed to empty in two draughts, at the most. Thor seized it and gulped down first one, then two, then three draughts, but he hadn’t changed the level in the horn at all. Bitterly disappointed and unbelieving, he attempted to prove at least how strong he was by picking up from the ground a certain cat. It didn’t budge, except for one paw which he managed to lift about an inch off the ground. Then he tried to wrestle with the old woman, Elli, but she forced one of his knees to the ground. Thor was completely humiliated, and was about to turn away in disgrace, when the king stopped him. “Don’t go,” he exclaimed. “You are the strongest person in the whole world. It was I who met you in the forest in disguise. And it was only because I covered my head with mountains that you did not kill me with the blows of your hammer. Loki was unable to beat Logi because he was fire itself. As for Hugi, he was thought, and no one can outrun thought. You couldn’t empty the drinking horn because the other end was plunged in the inexhaustible sea. But you did manage to set the tide in motion. The immovable cat was the serpent of Midgard whose coils surround the earth. It was bad enough that you moved his paw, for you started a terrible earthquake. And don’t let the fact that you couldn’t beat an old woman upset you. She was Old Age, and no one will ever conquer her. “Furious that he had been made a fool of, Thor started to hurl his hammer at the giant. But Utgardaloki had disappeared, and with him the castle. There was nothing in sight but the grass which grew on the deserted plain.
The Teutonic-Scandinavian myths, comprise stories that are very difficult to sort out because they were reworked by Christian authors during the periods of the intense converting campaigns – from 500 to 1000 A.D. North German, South German, Danish, Norse, and Icelandic legends have different names for the same gods, plus considerable discrepancies in their roles, their importance, and their functions. Most of the stories come from an anonymous collection of poems known as the Elder Edda, and a prose version known as the Younger Edda. The date of composition of these works has been very difficult to ascertain, as is the case with almost every true folk epic, but generally the late twelfth and thirteenth centuries are held to be the time at which these tales were recorded. Many of them date from at least the ninth century. One of the significant differences between the Scandinavian legends and the Greek, as anyone will notice immediately, is the tremendously important role magic plays, and the delight in cruelty and meanness, personified in Loki. There seems to be little joy or hope either in Asgard or on earth. The hero always tries to prove his valor or his goodness, but can only do this by dying. In death he triumphed. Such a courting of death is totally foreign to the Greek soul, which believed in life – that the world was a marvelous creation. No Norse poet could have written as Sophocles did in his play Antigone: “many are the wonders in the world, but nothing is more wondrous than man.” For the Teutonic – Anglo-Saxon tradition, wonders and portents were the province of the demons. Magic was the real power.
In Led Zeppelin’s epic tune Immigrant Song, one of the lyrics is “Valhalla I am coming.” It refers to Norse Mythology. Valhalla is a hall in Asgard where the souls of fallen warriors are taken by the “Valkyries,” which are spirits of war who carry up heroes who have been slain. Only heroes are taken to Valhalla, where they will wait for their certain doom.
Immigrant Song – Led Zeppelin
We come from the land of the ice and snow,
From the midnight sun where the hot springs flow.
The hammer of the gods will drive our ships to new lands,
To fight the horde, singing and crying: Valhalla, I am coming!
On we sweep with threshing oar, Our only goal will be the western shore.
We come from the land of the ice and snow,
From the midnight sun where the hot springs blow.
How soft your fields so green, can whisper tales of gore,
Of how we calmed the tides of war. We are your overlords.
On we sweep with threshing oar, Our only goal will be the western shore.
So now you’d better stop and rebuild all your ruins,
For peace and trust can win the day despite of all your losing.
The Twilight of the Gods
From the very beginning of their life in Asgard, the gods had known they would have to die. As long as they could, they tried to put off the terrible event by preventing the giants and dwarfs from getting too strong, and tying to maintain justice and honesty. But one among their number could never be trusted; that of Loki. And his love of trickery spread to others the gods aware that he was responsible for the death of their beloved Balder, the last deed in a series that had been growing more and more evil. He finally had to be punished and was clapped in irons. But this made him the eternal enemy of the gods, and when he broke his chains he joined the ranks of their irreconcilable opponents, the giants and demons.
One day the watchman, Heimdall, saw that the wolf, Fenrir, had broken the unbreakable chain, and was sailing toward Asgard on a boat whose helmsman was Loki. This boat was approaching from the North. From the West another ship was coming, manned by the giant Hrym and a phantom crew. The giant Surt appeared from the South with other giants, and the fire they started began to burn away the innards of the earth. The heat reached the vault of the heavens and it cracked in two. The gods and the giants were at last face to face, as prophesied from the beginning of time.
By agreement, they fixed the battlefield, a square measuring one thousand leagues on a side, in front of Valhalla. Its name was Vigrid; here the terrible butchery took place. Odin was the first to perish in the titanic battle. He attacked the wolf, Fenrir, and was swallowed hole. His son, Vidar, avenged him by piercing the beast through the gullet to its very heart. Thor went after the hideous beast he had long ago tried to kill – the great serpent of Midgard – which crawled toward the thunder-god, spewing out such powerful poison that sea and earth and air alike were polluted. Thor crushed the skull of the monster with his magic hammer, but he had breathed in so much poisoned air that he staggered away, and after nine steps, fell dead. Loki and Heimdall had always been enemies, so in the battle each sought out the other. But in killing Heimdall, Loki himself was killed. The mischievous god who had turned good into evil was finally dead. Only one god was left alive, one-handed Tyr. He ranged the battlefield looking for the wolf Fenrir who had taken his right hand. He was too late, for Odin’s son had already killed him. But upon hearing a terrible growling behind him, he turned around to face the dog of the underworld, Garm. Tyr plunged his sword deep into the ferocious beast’s heart, but in so doing, he was mauled to death.
All the Gods were dead. A great flood rose up from the seas as the earth began to loose its shape. The starts fell from the sky, and soon the whole earth had sunk beneath the ocean. The end had come. In the great cycle of legends preserved in the anonymous poems known as the Eddas there is an eventual rebirth of the world and new gods. But they are uninteresting, dull creatures compared to the golden shining gods, the Aesir, who had lived in Asgard.
I’ve often asked myself just what I think I would like most in this world. Surprisingly I found that when the question is asked every 10 years, in my case it seemed to yield similar answers every time asked. I know we have selective memories and that we can often betray our own senses, but when looking back through all the years I have witnessed, there are only a few truly codifying moments for me to reveal.
What is it that we want more than anything else in this world?
To answer this question I went back in time to ask myself just what I thought at different ages in my life. I used a very special time machine for this purpose to collect my information. This time machine is an elaborate instrument that has more neural connections than the known stars in the sky. There is no exact number, as most neurons are too tiny to be viewed with a microscope, but conservative estimates put it at least 1 trillion (10^12) connections in the brain alone.
Take the optic nerve for an example – this is one nerve that runs from the eye to the brain and is responsible for sight. There are 1 million neurons in this particular nerve alone – so each neuron has 999,999 potential partners – but it must meet with its exact partner out of 1,000,000 for vision.
Thus, this time machine I call upon produces the memories that populate my mind and sends me back to the time I wish and I ask myself just what it is that I wanted? After I reviewed the most popular 3 answers for each time I asked this question, there was always one that stood out which you see below.
7 Year Old: The love of my parents and brother
17 Year Old: The friendships and acceptance outside of my family
27 Year Old: Starting my own family
37 Year Old: The love and acceptance from my daughter
47 Year Old: The acceptance and forgiveness of myself
It is an interesting set of answers to an interesting question that spans forty years and demonstrates the quintessential desire in human relationships for me at least. Of course these are based on my circumstances for each time, my disposition toward the world for each time, my personality and ego’s assessment at each time, and a subconscious presence in these times were evaluated for content in those contexts. I chose to begin with the age of seven years old because around that time I have memories that began to question such matters.
The notion that memories can be considered as mental time capsules; a snapshot of time that you can again review is as sound as the memory if indeed the memory is stored accurately. The truism that I am exploiting may just have a duel edge; one that can teach us a history lesson (if we have learned it), or one edge that defies the lesson we still need to earn.
For me I am fortunate to have sources other than my memory. The memory of my friends, family, and that of my journals can give much information when asking the right questions. What I found to be striking is the preoccupation with this topic of how I fit into the social arena. I am perplexed at the matter because on a casual observation, it seems that I am just that, ‘preoccupied’ with those around me, or how I seem to relate to them. But further analysis indicates that I have a fundamental disconnection with some of the people in my life, that I am searching and have always been searching for a greater metaphysical connection than what I have been able to make during this time in my life. I do not take into account the material wants, as I seek a deeper question that involves more than this physical world can provide for us. I edited my answers above with this in mind, and I am left with still a perplexing question for anyone to consider.
It is the reason for my Enneagram personality and orientation to the world growing up as a small child. It is the reason for the disposition in my relationships through-out much of my life and the yearnings for deeper connections. It is also responsible for much of how I handled and mishandled the emotional events and the coping strategies used when going through my personal endeavors.
You can take any life and extract out of it any meaning you wish to make a case for, but for me, I am, and always have been one that has sought out some measure of truth I can feel deeply. Not a religious experience, or beliefs that will satisfy a mind’s logical analysis, but rather to engage in a deeper experience that is felt in your entire being. Much talk of this is found in many religions, and from many mystics around the world. For reasons I do not completely understand, I have a need to open the doors that have not yet opened for me. I somehow feel there is more than what I am allowing myself to see given my disposition.
It is that reason that I have always looked but have not yet found in the course of my life. I am like one of those blind men in the parable of the elephant….
In the Udana (68–69) the Buddha uses the elephant parable to describe sectarian quarrels. A king has the blind men of the capital brought to the palace, where an elephant is brought in and they are asked to describe it.
When the blind men had each felt a part of the elephant, the king went to each of them and said to each: ‘Well, blind man, have you seen the elephant? Tell me, what sort of thing is an elephant?’
The men cannot agree with one another and come to blows over the question of what it is like and their dispute delights the king. The Buddha ends the story by comparing the blind men to preachers and scholars who are blind and ignorant and hold to their own views: “Just so are these preachers and scholars holding various views blind and unseeing…. In their ignorance they are by nature quarrelsome, wrangling, and disputatious, each maintaining reality is thus and thus.” The Buddha then speaks the following verse:
O how they cling and wrangle, some who claim
For preacher and monk the honored name!
For, quarreling, each to his view they cling.
Such folk see only one side of a thing.
“We have to remember that what we observe is not nature in itself, but nature exposed to our method of questioning.” – Werner Heisenberg
Therefore one must ask the right questions and out of that reasoning comes my metaphysical problem which can lead one to break through the reasoning barrier by uniting with another human intention and energy of perception. Hence my lifelong solution may just lie within my perceptive abilities. Abilities such as the mystical encounters by which many may have transitioned over their rational realms to reach a deeper understanding given their conditioning. A psychic gap bridged by other features of our experience in this world, one that can be ‘felt’ and not just thought!
This gives a whole new outlook when rereading works such as …
For the obvious reasons my search is still on. Differences on how we learn best is evident in many of the studies I have read that can be found in the current psychological literature. Some people are more verbal, some are more tactile, some are more visual, and some are more abstract, et cetera, so by virtue of this analogy I may have not done justice to the materials I was working with on a very rational level. My accounts must also seed my other inner senses to fully grasp an experience in this life that appreciates much more of it. I must also live in the practice of undoing my former conditioning that prevents me from aligning with a deeper self, one that ‘knows’ it is connected to all that is around. The bridge I build is one for the heart, one that will further my journey into discovery.
I’ve lain awake for most of the night tossing and turning because my mind is restless. I not sure why I am this way but I have reason to believe it is because I long for something more in the life I am following. There is also another reason that occurs to me. The reasoning is as ancient as we are a species I surmise. The will to change comes from an influence of people I love or hold in high regard. However this inspiration transforms us into significant lasting changes within us, it has an equal importance in the renewal that aids us in becoming better people. The transformational qualities that a person can have on you are just as valuable as the benefits received from the changes that occur within us.
There are some days when you are lying in bed, just trying to relax so that you can drift off to sleep, and become vexed because you cannot seem to quiet your mind. It races and keeps focused on some deeper questions when all other insignificant issues drop away from my conscious thoughts. However disturbing this can be, it can also become a liaison to change; an event that forces you to do something different and shift the course you are on.
I know only that I am thoughtful about being a better man than the one I am today. I’ve discovered that to truly enrich my life I can start allowing myself to extinguish the unnecessary convictions I have previously held on to that no longer serve me. I seem driven by forces that are not satisfied with the status quo of my person-hood. I remember that this has happened to me before, (sleepless nights from an induced restless mind), and during that time I began a quest of change, a transformation of a former self.
During this younger self I focused on behaviors that would improve my physical appearance (my health and well-being). I acquired a job that would allow me to fund my intellectual goals and maintain my financial autonomy. I also found quality friends for my social development. Those were sound choices at the time, but what I didn’t account for was the hidden injuries and baggage of my mind that became more evident as I aged only to resurface again later on in my life. Thus again I must pursue a path to cleanse me of these burdens that weigh me down and impede my development.
I must say I have much work to do since I have allowed myself to derail from previous developments. We cannot always predict what we will encounter in this life, and things happen that swedes us into disbanding some of our best efforts and behaviors. I could honestly say on occasion that the ‘two steps forward and one step back’ cliché in my case translates more like stumbling on my way forward only to fall back into a past footprint!
I have previously written on this topic, but what I have not detailed is the sleepless nights where my mind is running at a pace that I cannot diffuse. It is an awakening deep within me that is making its way to be known in my head and my heart. I do not plan on such things as they deeply affect me as I can only allow them to guide me and let these feelings run their course. Wonderful things can happen under the influence of such a powerful emotion. Not all of our feelings will be brought into the light, because of the many complexities of this world. We bury them deep within us to protect any miscalculation, we tuck them away because we may never act on them due to the circumstances. Sometimes this may be wise for us to handle such matters in this way, and sometimes it is a very unfortunate risk that was never taken, and thus haunts us until our death-bed.
I do not know all the reasons why, I often think about every possible angle I can get my head around it, but the heart wants what it wants, and so I am left on occasion sleepless in San Diego.
I have no illusions to make about my situation. It is there for me to use this energy and direct myself into an unknown outcome. It is not the first time, and may not be the last, but I can certainly say that it can be a force to reckon with. If executed with diligence and wisdom this kind of development can be an awesome motivational springboard. The above video is symbolic in how we become moved and charmed by those in our lives.
Who can say where the road goes
Where the day flows, only time
And who can say if your love grows
As your heart chose, only time
Who can say why your heart sighs
As your love flies, only time
And who can say why your heart cries
When your love lies, only time
Who can say when the roads meet
That love might be in your heart
And who can say when the day sleeps
If the night keeps all your heart
Night keeps all your heart
Who can say if your love grows
As your heart chose
And who can say where the road goes
Where the day flows, only time
I think that I may just have been the most stubborn man alive.
Soul-searching for answers I’ve reviewed pages and pages of journal entries, researched philosophical and psychological books, and when confiding and consulting others to help me heal from this condition I seem to perpetuate; I have reached a conclusion that is not an easy pill to digest. I have now finally awakened to the fact that I have eluded this truthful pearl of wisdom for many of the years I have looked for it. A paradoxical condition that confines me in an eternal unrest, and that has kept me in a bond of emotional servitude despite my attempts to escape from it.
It was always available to me intellectually, but it was rejected by my emotional inner child that has never fully developed for much of my life. Maybe my time to develop this principle is now mature enough to fully grasp the concept of forgiveness? This post goes out to all of those whom have suffered under the tolerance of a will that has not fully forgiven the transgressions of past emotional wounds.
When we allow for all of our being to become aware, (our minds, hearts, and spirit), a true awakening can occur. A very special thank you to my beloved friend from Williamsburg. I have opened my heart again and have clarity in the work I need to complete. I know I have my work cut out for me, but it is precisely because of my heart that I can again thrive. You have reminded me again of this and reignited this everlasting truth I have misplaced for some time, and for that I am eternally grateful.
Transcending your conditioning
Asking the ego to help diminish its own significance so that you might have access to your higher self is akin to attempting to stand on your own shoulders. Ego is as unable to move aside in deference to spirit as your eye is able to see itself or the tip of your tongue able to touch the tip on your tongue!
Your task becomes a quagmire of paradoxes. If you rely upon your ego to get past the influences of the ego, it will only strengthen its hold on you. You must figure out how to emancipate consciousness from the limitations of your mind and your body.
In the ego state you generally experience yourself as a separate entity. To move past this conditioning you want to begin to see yourself as humanity itself and not as a separate form in the body. Very simply put, if you feel that you are disconnected from the rest of humanity and are truly a separate entity needing to prove yourself and compete with others, you will be unable to manifest your heart’s desire.
Manifesting is not about getting things that are not here. It is about attracting what is already here and is a part of you on a spiritual level. If you stay separate, that which you wish to manifest will forever be unavailable to you. If you shift that awareness around and are able to see yourself as a part of what you want, you will have transcended the conditioning of your ego, and of all the other egos who have contributed to this process in you life.
The first spiritual principle directs you to overcome your conditioning. It requires you to adopt a new attitude about yourself, and then to put this attitude into daily practice. Having a philosophy is useless if it is simply an awareness of rituals and the teachings of experts. To make your philosophy work for you it must become an energy pattern that you use in your daily life. It must have both an eternal truth to it as well as a utilitarian quality that makes you feel it.
The spiritual oneness in all religions:
Christianity: The kingdom of heaven is within you
Islam: Those who know themselves know their God
Buddhism: Look within, you are the Buddha
Vedanta (part of Hinduism): Atman (individual consciousness) and Brahman (universal consciousness): are one
Yoga (part of Hinduism): God dwells within you as you
Confucianism: Heaven, earth and human are of one body
Upanishads (part of Hinduism): By understanding the self, all this universe is known
Energy in being: We can use this universal energy to bring to us objects of our desire, because the same energy that is in what we desire is also in us and vice versa. Bringing things into the physical world is a process that we call creation. What we create involves the use of the same power in all that is created. It is only a matter of degree. There is absolutely no difference in the power that brings anything from the world of waves into the world of particles, and the power that brings your thoughts or mental pictures into form.
Unbonding yourself from your past wounds
The inclination to bond to our wounds rather than move past them traps us in a constant state of feeling unworthy. A person who has experienced traumatic events in life, such as abuse, the death of love ones, traumatic illnesses, accidents, family disruption, drug addictions and the like, can become bonded with the past painful events and replay them for attention or pity.
The more we tell others about our wounds and our suffering, the more we create an atmosphere of pity for ourselves. Our creative spirit remains so connected to our memories of woundedness that it cannot be about the business of transforming and manifesting. A feeling of being unworthy of receiving all that one desires is the result. Very often the tale of these woes is told in the first few moments with a sort of urgency for the listener to know how horrible the wounding was and still is. After a while the ego uses this energy as a power play in individual and group situations that encourage discussion of one’s struggle to survive the wounding. This can keep individuals from advancing spiritually and one reinforce the image of themselves as unfortunate.
The tendency to bond with the wounds of our lives reminds us of how unworthy we are of receiving anything that we really would like because we remain in a state of suffering. The more these painful stories are recalled and repeated, the more the person is guaranteed of not attracting his or her desires, thus, you biography becomes your biology. therefore your biology becomes your lack o spiritual fulfillment.
When you go backward and continuously relive your pain, including describing it in most introductions and labeling yourself (abandonment), you do not do so for strength. You do it because of your inner experience of bitterness. The way out of bonding to your wounds is through forgiveness. Forgiveness is the most powerful thing that you can do for your physiology and your spirituality, and it remains one of the least attractive things to us, largely because your egos rule so unequivocally. Forgiveness means that you fill yourself with love and you radiate that love outward and refuse to hang only the venom or hatred that was engendered by the behaviors that cause the wounds. Forgiveness is a spiritual act of love for yourself and it sends a message to everyone, including yourself, that you are an object of love and that that is what you are going to impart.
Feeling worthy is essential to being able to attract to yourself what you desire. It is simply a matter of common sense.
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