Monday, September 7, 2009
By James Clair Lewis
The Most Infinite & Transcendental separated itself into uncountable tiny parts, which fell into the illusions of separation & darkness. Each of us is God's Dream. Don't let that Dream become a nightmare....
I've found that literal interpretations of scriptures, lead to nonsense. Only from the context of Mystical experience can one make sense out of them. The qualities of serenity, compassion, humility, & wisdom proceed from an inner Realization, and otherwise, it really doesn't matter, what you believe or think. Scriptures are like a pointing finger. The question is, are you going to stare at the finger, or are you going to investigate what the finger is pointing at?
An Atheist once said to me, "If your life is to have any value, then you must put it there." I like that a lot. It didn't bother me a bit that he didn't believe in God, because it was obvious, through his conduct in life, that he was much closer to God, than most people who do believe. And in that, you will find the context of what really matters. When people live in serenity, and practice compassion & love in the conduct of their lives, they are demonstrating the Essence that inspired religions in the first place. And that is certainly more fundamental than any scriptures.
Time spent in anger, is time you cannot spend in love. Time spent in sorrow, is time you cannot spend in joy. Time spent in destroying, is time you cannot spend creating. Time spent in learning, is time you cannot spend being foolish. Time spent in healing, creates time you can spend in health. Time spent in meditation, enables you to see clearly enough, so that you will not waste any time.
On the Spirtitual Plane everyone knows what the Truth is. However, the more disconnected one is to their Real Self, the more one needs to justify whatever gobbledegook they have substituted for the Truth. How else can they prove to themselves that they believe whatever nonsense that they believe, than by attacking anyone who believes differently than they do? This is why Fundamentalists of any religion are always so quick to resort to violence & terrorism.
On the other hand, the more one is connected to their Real Self, the more one is prone toward tolerance & compassion. Regardless of what Spiritual Tradition to which one adheres, the closer to Enlightenment one gets on their Path, the more one will enjoy discussing the process of how to become Illuminated with people who are working towards this through other Paths. Each of the Great Traditions is stronger than the others, in some aspect of this. When we put them all together, then the Key will turn in the lock, and we will all know the Truth.
When a soul chooses to move toward the Light, the darkness that has previously, been draining their energies to sustain the darkness, must assert itself to maintain its dominion. So everything seems to fall apart in your life, nothing that you desire to accomplish seems to come into fruition, and all of your efforts appear to be fruitless. That is the appearance of things in the material world. Do not be diverted from the goal by the manefestations of appearances as circumstances. You are a part of the Eternal, and partake of the Perfection of Life. Within you exist all of the Laws of Creation. Your part is to use your human Imagination to express the creative possibilities.
We can be said to exist on four planes simultaneously. Development comes along on these four planes, the Physical, the Astral, the Mental, and the Spiritual. Things work out best when we proceed along each of these planes simultaneously. Religions offer beliefs, doctrines, and dogma. Spirituality offers experience, knowledge & wisdom. Seeking externally, people go to religion. Seeking internally, people go to Spirituality. Spiritual people find the Power within themselves, and have no need to oppress anyone. Those who do not know this, must steal from others, to fill a void that can never be satisfied. A fool thinks only of the pleasures of the moment. The wise comtemplate both the far past & the far future, and thereby see what is of real value.
The most valuable thing in the world, and also, the most elusive, is the Balance Point. It lies between not seeing what is right in front of you, and seeing things that really are not there. To find this Clear Light, you must learn to rely, only upon yourself, and the Infinite resources within you. There is a great & wonderful power within you, capable of attaining any worthy goal. Learning the Divine Laws by which the Universe operates, learning how to live in harmony with them, and how to operate them, is a great task, but it is the Key to attaining anything which is worth having. When you desire something, you must put forth the effort needed to make it happen. Getting to know the Divine within yourself, and also within everything else, is it own reward. And it is a great reward of Serenity, Compassion, Knowledge, Wisdom, & Joy. These are the things for which you should pray.
It is not about the words we use. It is about our conduct, and how much we understand. On the Astral plane, everything is a symbol. Contemplate the symbols, until you see their meanings. Then the symbols vanish, and you can experience the meanings directly, and comprehend the Essences. Never underestimate the power of imagination. When the power of imagination is released, Magickal things become possible. Your consciousness is creative, gravitating conditions into your life according to Divine Laws.
The mind likes to be in control. It likes to fill itself with all kinds of thoughts, going around & around. When you meditate, you still the mind. In meditation you deliberately ignore the flow of thought. Your consciousness takes control of the mind for a change, and you can bet that the mind will not like this. That is why in meditation the mind will try to distract you anyway that it can. The thing is, that once your consciousness takes over control from the mind, your mind will become the efficient, logical tool that it was meant to be.
The attainment of True Wisdom burns away bad Karma, eliminating the need for one to go through the experience. If bad Karma can be burned away, how is this done? By learning to live in harmony with the Divine, one can recieve insight into Life, and see how to Live. True Wisdom is the Insight that reveals all the secrets, and how to become a channel through which blessings flow. Let the blessings of Love & Kindness, & Knowlege flow through you. Be aware. Pay Attention. Do what Love demands of you. In these ways will you step outside the Wheel of Karma.
There is this notion, that carries a Great Truth, that none of our ideas or beliefs really amount to much, except that we give our POWER to them through our acceptance of them. Our acceptance of beliefs into our consciousness, as realities, gives them power over us. Karma is not the only Law of Nature. There are six others, & each is just as powerful as any of the rest. Consider the 6th Law, the Law of Gravitation, (see my article on Metaphysics). You gravitate conditions into your physical life, that are in harmony with your idea of what you deserve. Thus, you have an opportunity here, you may change your attitude about your life, & just what you deserve from life.
You may choose that you deserve health, knowledge, wisdom & love. And those things will come to you, as you you earn them, through being a healer, obtaining knowledge, sharing of your knowledge while you accumulate more, and being real to people, without ulterior motives. Life follows the activity of the mind. Where the mind leads, there follows the pattern of your life. Memory is a good thing, if you use it as a source of information. But if you spend more time dwelling upon the past, rather than in planning for the future, where will your life go?
This reminds me of the story about a philosophy professor. He came to class with a gallon jar, and filled it with big rocks. "Is it full?", he asked the class. The students agreed. Then he sifted in a bunch of pebbles that fit in around the big rocks. "Is it full?", he asked again. The students agreed. Then the professor poured in a lot of sand until the jar was full. "The jar is your life. The big rocks are the most important things in life. The pebbles are important, too, but not as much. The sand is all the trivial stuff. When you are filling the jar of your life, put in the big rocks first, then the pebbles, and finally the sand. If you put in the sand first, then your life will have no room for anything important."
It is the Law of Gravitation. When you accept a thought or belief, you attach yourself to it, and everything that is connected to it. You then resonate on the vibration of that thought, and your subjective mind puts those vibrations out into the Universe. Conditions & situations that are like your worldview become attuned to you, and they begin to happen around you. "And the thing he feared came upon him..." A person who is afraid of, say, car accidents, is much more likely to do something that will get them into a car accident. But someone who drives confidently, and pays attention to what is going on around them, will find a way out, should danger arise.
Negative thinking clouds the mind, & impairs reason. Positive thinking clears the mind, & makes it sharp. If you have the expectation that good things will happen to you, then you will see many opportunities, as they come up. BUT a negative thinker will pass by these opportunities as if they were not there, because their internal inharmony, blinds them to the possibility. "As a man thinketh, so is he".
If you think something is impossible, then you make it a fact in your life. BUT, if you think something is possible, then it is merely a matter of figuring out just how you will do it, to make it a fact. Realizing that the Divine exists within you, makes it possible for you to untie the knots of bad Karma that bind you. When you release your attachment to a negative condition, a Hidden Agenda, then it can no longer hold any power over you, & soon, it will disappear. This is the Magick beyond spells, and you have always held this power within you, because God lives within us, and we live within God. So Mote It Be!!
Human languages were developed, so that people could discuss their surroundings, and activities. They are very much oriented toward dealing with the material world. So it is extremely difficult to speak of non-physical phenomena with language. The most ancient writings of a Spiritual nature used symbolic language. The problem with that, is that unless one knows what the symbols represent, one can only guess at their meaning. Careful Initiation into the Mysteries, and the discovery of your inner connection to the Divine is required, to understand them. Now our languages have evolved considerably with our comprehension of the physical laws of the Universe, and much that was once hidden can now be revealed in relatively plainer language. However, one still must realise that the principles only have meaning when made into realities expressed in your character & life. They are not merely ideas. They are the Archetypes that structure Life.
Completing the circuit is the real Magick trick. You have to make the connection between the positive source & the negative ground. When the circuit is complete, then the power flows, & things happen. With intuition you have to recognize it, & make use of it, to complete the circuit. If you do not heed your intuition, you will have turned the switch off, and you will stop getting flashes of intuition. But if you heed your true Inner Voice, then it will speak to you always, becoming an active part of who you are. If you are on the Path, then you can never be alone, because the whole Universe is within you, & without you....
You know how, when a plane just breaks Mach1, it creates a sonic boom? All this pressure & turbulence builds up, and at the speed of sound, there is the boom, and then the plane moving faster than sound, bypasses all of that as things adjust to its movement for smooth sailing. I think that the time period before a Spiritual or Magickal breakthrough, the same thing occurs. You do almost everything you can think of to get things going the way you want to on a major project, & BOOM.... it all falls apart. When this happens repeatedly, it is because there is a principle you have been missing, that is the key to completion.
Most people know about the Law of Karma, and tend to relate everything to it, but it is not the whole picture. There are seven of these Cosmic Laws, and the results you get in life are directly related to your knowing how to apply them (see my article on Metaphysics). One Law in particular is very important, when dealing with repetitive karmic situations. This is the Law of Gravity. It is a law of attunement. Things that vibrate on the same frequency, are drawn together. What you believe in your inmost Heart about yourself, has tremendous power to gravitate situations similar to your beliefs into your life.
You can organize the best plans, carefully lay out the groundwork, do all of the necissary background research, and put out your whole effort, and still fail. The key to using the Law of Gravity, is to change your attitude about yourself, & what you deserve out of life. Absolute faith in yourself, in your abilities, talents, etc is essential. If you do not believe that you deserve success, then the Universe will not give it to you. If you believe that you are one who can do a great job, but will still be ignored, then that is what you will get. After all the work you have done to learn & apply this knowledge, your own self-image is the only thing that can hold it all back. So you need to develop your faith in yourself, based upon the preparation you have done, and see yourself as a person who is worthy & deserving of all that Life has to offer. BOOM!!
It is mind over matter in all cases. This material universe is an illusion created by consciousness through the Cosmic Laws. All of us are co-creators of the world we live in. When you consider the wide spectrum of Spiritual development of people on Earth, all of their varying belief systems, and the ways they use or mis-use the Cosmic Laws in the conduct of their lives, then this crazy world, actually makes some sense. On the Macrocosmic level, Karma functions exactly as we are taught in all of the Traditions. BUT, on the Microcosmic level, Karma manefests as Chaos, randomness, the uncertainty principle. So depending upon the plane of your perspective, everything happens for a reason, or nothing does. Both possobilities are simultaneous, and neither is mutually exclusive.
I know that the brain manufactures chemicals that are physical analogues of our emotions & moods. These chemicals break down after awhile, but while they are in our system, they do influence us. So you may have gotten yourself into a chemical feedback loop. You are depressed, so your brain manufactures depressing chemicals, which make you feel depressed, etc etc. We know that you can break this chain, because you are asking these questions. Now comes the hard part. Magick is largely the force of will, powered by desire & vision. What you need to do, is to replace the negative thinking with positive thinking. Every time a negative thought enters your mind, you must refuse it, and replace it with a positive thought of harmony or creativity. These positive thoughts will cause the brain to manufacture chemicals corresponding with them. Gradually, the chemicals associated with depression will be pushed out of the system, and be replaced with chemicals of harmony & peace.
Doreal, (founder of the Brotherhood of the White Temple, http://bwtemple.org), said that if a person could spend 24 hours without a single negative thought, that their health would return to the natural state of perfection, and that they would be so clear-minded that they would be able to figure out a solution for any problem that they had to deal with. OK. So that's a little bit tough. People love their negative thoughts, and are very attached to them. And it is very difficult to divorce yourself from something that you love, even when it is killing you. But if you can go for 12 hours a day with no negative thoughts for three days in a row, that should work just as well. Or even 8 hours a day with no negative thoughts for 5 days in a row. The thing is, you need to develop a new mental habit. Refuse the negativity whenever it crops up, and replace it with positivity. Over time, this will become easier, & easier, as the new mental habit becomes entrenched.
What people call normal is an illusion. Is it normal to believe things that are not true? Is it normal to behave in ways that are destructive to yourself & the world around you? Is it normal to live in ignorance? Is it normal to sabotage yourself with negative attitudes? Is it normal to desire harm to people who are different from you? Yet so-called normal people do these things all the time. What people call normal is an illusion. Remember where Socrates said, "The unexamined life is not worth living" ? Does somebody who has never questioned anything, or put out any effort to improve themselves or the world around them, really amount to much? You are only responsible for dealing with your own Karma, BUT you will also get Karma to deal with, from people who have attached themselves to you. Making choises is a difficult process, but with experience, you will begin to see the patterns & their results. It is an excellent Guide. And remember : No one has ever attained Enlightenment without first developing a sense of humor.
If you think that Spirituality with one foot on the ground works well, then wait until you try it with BOTH feet on the ground, your body in the clouds, & your head in Heaven (Qaballistic reference). The completed circuit gives you the perspective to see things as they are, from the whole gamut of perspectives, forcing an alignment of the entire spectrum, & revealing the Truth.
The Law of Motion states that once an object has been put into motion, that it will continue its trajectory unabated forever, unless another force is brought to bear upon it, either changing its motion, or vibration. That's the physical law, but it is also a Cosmic Law, and operates on all planes. A boulder of depression rolling down a hill, is not an easy thing to stop. It requires an equal amount of force moving in the opposite direction to bring it to a halt. A supreme act of Will could do it immediately, but developing a habit of positivity, will gradually slow it down, stop it, & reverse direction.
That is why there are so many different Spiritual techniques out there. You just have to find the ones that work for you. Meditation works for everybody, but it is a slow process. Some people chant mantra, others do Yoga. Nature walks, & hiking rejuvenate many people. There is power in music & dance, and also color therapy. Incense sets a mood of holiness. When the body is out of sorts, the mind doesn't do very well either. A reflexology treatment can remove a lot of tension, and make all of the rest of this much easier. Often people find gardening brings them closer to the Earth. Many kinds of exercise bring people a "high", which carries over into the rest of their life. There are lots of options.
With Karma it works like this. Whenever you do anything in thought, word, or deed, you set up a cause that will return to you as an effect. This cause will alter things around you, and that will also return to you, as a secondary effect. Finally, your motion through the Universe, your activities on all planes of existance, ripple out through the Macrocosm, creating a cascade affecting many things you probably will not be aware of, and this, too, will return to you. I think this is why in Paganism, that they speak of the Law of Three. It is also an excellent reason for cultivating a state of serenity & tranquility, as best you can. Who in their right mind, would want to spend Eternity dealing with a lot of crap? A simple act of kindness, not only helps someone out, but it also puts out a vibe in the aethers, which makes it easier for other people to do the same. Yes, there most certainly is a ripple effect.
Unreasoning & compulsive hatred will eat away your soul, especially when it revolves around the hatred of a group of people based on race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, economic class or national origin. Greed for money as an end in itself, or even worse, greed for power over other people, will consume your soul. And finally, the Dark Side, that malevolent manefestation of the lowest end of the Spiritual spectrum, which inspires destruction, genocide, oppression, and all kinds of fanaticism, is the Eater of Souls.
The Cosmic Laws work equally well for all living things, and it doesn't matter whether people know about them or not to stir them into motion. With people who are very unenlightened, the results are quite chaotic. Negative thinking & action leads to illness, and all sorts of inharmonies. Positive thinking & action leads to health & wider opportunities. So it all comes down to what you know, & how you apply it.
Nothing in this world or on any other plane can ever harm you, unless you have created within yourself a condition that allows it to. In Buddhism there is no force in the universe that is a personification of evil. Buddhists believe that the only evil in the world, is the evil that we harbor within ourselves. In the Buddhist Mandala of the Wheel of Life, there are three animals painted in the center, who are said to keep the Wheel of Illusion going around & around. They are a greedy pig, a strutting cock, and a snake in the grass. They symbolize the lowest of mundane desires : greedy, pride & treachery.
Love is Universal, and a power few completely comprehend. Most people on the Path concentrate on studying the theory & practices & history. This is necessary, but the most important work, is not involved in what we learn, as it is in what we un-learn. All the negativity, illusions, & unworthy desires, that the world dumps into our minds as we grow up, must be rooted out & gotten rid of, before we can make any real progress on the Path. In Buddhism it is taught that the ego is an illusion, and that this world also is illusion. In Western Occult teachings they speak of the lower self, and the Real Self. Overcoming the illusions of the lower self, the ego, allows one to realize the higher Self, ones true identity in the Divine.
That matter is not truly solid, that it is composed of space & fields of energy, is a clear indication that the entire physical Universe is nothing more than an illusion created by Mind. The material world appears solid, but this is an illusion. At the molecular level all separations dissolve into space & fields of energy. In Buddhism, the ego (or lower self), is also considered to be an illusion. All of the aggregates of personality are seen merely to be habits of thinking, with no more substance than matter at the molecular level. The belief in the reality of appearances is what binds us to the cycle of birth & death, and the world of suffering. By divesting yourself of all these false beliefs, one can realize their true identity in the Divine, and know that All is One.
Nothing harmful can affect you, unless you have created a condition in your mind for it to attach itself to you. Altering your perspective on things, changes your vibration, & then the condition cannot attach itself to you. Reality is fluid, and responds to what we put out by the ways in which we think. When people become rigid in their thinking, they bind themselves to conditions, & cannot see a way out of their suffering. Understanding how this process works is the Key by which you can learn to create the conditions of your desires.
The Universe will give you anything you want, but first the Universe looks into your Heart to see what is there. If you attach yourself to turmoil & trouble, then the Universe will give you that. If you attach yourself to peace & serenity, then the Universe will give you that, instead. Force creates resistance. Like a bar of soap in a bathtub, life will be content to rest in your hand, but once you squeeze it really hard, then it will slip away. Grasping AT things, drives them away from you. People do this because of their need to feel that they are in control, when they are not. By learning to control yourself, & understanding the reasons for your motivations, you relax into the flow of life, and gain the ability to steer your own course. Exerting power externally, shows that you lack power & insight internally.
Do not try to effect changes in the outer world, at a time when your inner world is in distress. How could that work? Magick is an act of will, but it must come from a mind that is clear & serene. The conditions that you find occuring in your life, are reflections of your most deeply held attitudes & beliefs. Attach yourself to thoughts of harmony, peace, kindness, strength, wisdom, knowledge & compassion, and these things will find a way to manefest around you in the world. Make the effort to do the inner work, and the external things will take care of themselves. That is the true power of Magick.
Harboring negative thoughts & feelings within yourself, will throw you out of balance. Holding false concepts about Life, will cloud your vision. People dwell so much upon negative things, that it will take all of the meditation & Spiritual Practices that you can do, to break the habit. Allowing the emotions to rule your life, will lead you to be irrational. Letting your intellect to dominate, will make you rigid. Neither of these is balance. Balance is a state of harmony, that gives you a clear perspective on what is important in Life.
Much of human suffering comes from identifying & defining ourselves with external things. All external things are subject to change. They have beginnings & endings. Attachments based upon things which are impermanent, can only lead to suffering. What good can come from defining yourself on the basis of a relationship, a job, status, or things acquired? When things get really complicated, then it is time to make them simple. If you are being pulled in many directions at once, then you need to be at your center. Having a strong center of calm is the Key to gaining control over your life. When you are in your center of calm, then all of the craziness of the world falls into perspective. Things that really aren't important, lose their power to command your attention. The center of calm that you will develop from contemplation & meditation, will enable you to concentrate your efforts on the things that do matter, and from this your life will sort itself out towards what it ought to be.
There are several different sorts of teachers. There are teachers who claim to be Enlightened Gurus, but who are actually only good at manipulating people to satisfy their personal desires, and relieve people of the "burdens of their material possessions". Beware these people. Next you can take Life itself as your Teacher, seeing everything that happens to you, & everyone you meet, to be the conveyor of a Divine message. This is a good teacher, but it may happen that you will not understand the lesson you are being presented with. Then there are the Teachers who have acquired great Knowledge & Wisdom in one or more areas, & who are totally sincere & kind. A few of these are Illuminated Adepts, but most are Initiates of the Mysteries, not quite Enlightened, but close enough. These you should treat as friends. And finally, there is the Teacher within yourself. Your Real Self, is always with you, but is also the hardest to find.
Each of us is an expression of the Great I AM, which is God. All of the Glory, Wisdom, Serenity, Compassion, & Power of the Universe, exists as a potentiality within us, and our job on the Path, is to make this possibility, a Reality, which we manefest in the conduct of our lives. Never refer to yourself as i, because that is to deny the Divinity which exists within all of us, if we would just be willing to see IT. Many times I have been told by Illuminated Adepts, that in any moment, it is possible to realize & manefest Enlightenment.
As you continue making progress on the Path, you will start having more experiences on the higher planes. You may know things, that you cannot account for knowing, get vibes from people, objects, & places. You may travel on the higher planes, having experiences on the Astral Plane or higher. You may become more & more aware of who you have been in the past. All of these things are gifts, and in time, you will view them as normal facets of your life. The purpose of devotional literature, is to raise the Mind above the mundane world, & plant it firmly in the Spiritual Realm. Allowing your mind to focus on fear, guilt, & anxiety creates an unhealthy environment both inside & outside. Some books that will lift your Spirit would be The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, Metaphysical Meditations by Paramahansa Yogananda ( a renowned veggie Yoga Master), The Impersonal Life (published by DeVoss), or The Secret of the Ages by Robert Collier, but I'm sure it is long out of print, having been self-published in 1926. All I am doing, is making clear what you already know in your Heart. When you see these truths in your own Heart, then you bridge the gap between your self, & your Real Self, and what is truly Divine in the Universe can express itself through you.
I could repost James's entire website - it is loaded with valuable wisdom, but it would really make more sense for you to explore it yourself: