Are You Susceptible to Evil?

This is a question which most will never consider. As I mentioned earlier evil has managed to get the whole subject of evil taboo. It is a feat of some considerable trickery.

In the very early part of this century, I encountered on the physical plane a number of individuals who with the benefit of hindsight I now consider to be evil and who practised the dark art of forceful manipulation. One of these was the CEO of the company I co-founded. Luckily, I did not get overly tainted by his acquaintance. Around that time, I was offered many temptations, the vast majority of which I did not take. Another character was very nasty and prone to growling and being generally unpleasant.

I’ll speculate. The more insecure you are the more susceptible to evil you are. If you want to take shortcuts and be cunning, evil will tempt you and you will find it hard to resist. If you want to hold the trump card, the joker up the sleeve, evil may appear to offer you these. If you desire the upper hand the advantage because you don’t think you are not good enough, evil will whisper in your ear. If you like secrets and playing secret squirrels evil will offer you, its cloak. Do you like to persuade or manipulate others to do your bidding, if so, evil will show you how. Evil is always willing to negotiate and to strike a bargain, it likes to offer rewards. It believes in sticks and carrots.

There is a basic question. Which do you prefer Sun Tzu or Lao-Tse? One is force the other is flow.

Evil likes to possess, enslave and have power over beings. Evil likes binding contracts. Many think that they are being good leaders when in fact all they are doing is trying to satisfy their lust for power. They will have many justifications for why they are a good leader, why they know best. Power tempts and can be the thin end of the wedge whereby evil permeates. For those susceptible to evil there is always a path of least resistance and evil knows how to find it.

In the previous post the Tibetan suggests that it is lower concrete mind, where evil if effective. Lower concrete mind out argues what remains of conscience and intuition. It silences the still small voice of calm.

It in using justifications can find reasons for heinous acts, weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, Nazis in Ukraine. Evil twists and perverts. Trump lost his battle with power; he could not admit he lost the election. The King of Rohan listened to the whispers of Grima Wormtongue. Smeagol was twisted by the ring of power.

But evil does not need to be so dramatic. It can just be deep selfishness, ambition and greed. Evil is often about material acquisition. Most would find this notion of gaining material goods as normal. But in excess and in an unfair distribution there is evil. Occultly speaking matter has remnants of evil in it. Lust for money, is evil.  The word ME can found somewhere in the motive for all low level mundane evil practices. Me, me, me, me is an evil mantra. Evil is jealous and vengeful.

Balance is not evil, excess often is.

Having read the above, are you susceptible to evil?

Light Quotes

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Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in while, or the light won’t come in.

Alan Alda

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People are like stained – glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.

Leonard Cohen

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Come forth into the light of things, let nature be your teacher.

William Wordsworth

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He whose face gives no light, shall never become a star.

William Blake

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I live and love in God’s peculiar light.

Michelangelo

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Zeal without knowledge is fire without light.

Thomas Fuller

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The burden which is well borne becomes light.

Ovid

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What is to give light must endure burning.

Viktor E. Frankl

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Truth, like light, blinds. Falsehood, on the contrary, is a beautiful twilight that enhances every object.

Albert Camus

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Faith is the bird that feels the light when the dawn is still dark.

Rabindranath Tagore

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As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being.

Carl Jung

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Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.

Anton Chekhov

Do You Have a Preferred Version of Reality?

When one starts doing personal development courses to help others, one quickly realises that so many people are in fact not self-aware, and they don’t really care about it. It never occurs to them that they are largely ignorant about inter-personal dynamics, and they tend to behave as if they know it all already. When I was asked to do some team development at a Cambridge University institute the brief was that the technicians were causing problems and they needed to learn to work better together. It quickly became obvious that it was the academics who were causing all the problems by their unrealistic demands and the power imbalance. When I suggested that it was the academics who needed training it went down like a lead balloon. So, I had to adjust the course for the technicians into how to deal with difficult people with unrealistic expectations and a sense of entitled divinity. The preferred reality there, held by the academics, was that THEY, the technicians, were the problem.

Lots of people have preferred versions where everybody else is the problem. There is always someone else putting flies in my ointment, pissing on my fire, it is all their fault, the bastards.

People can be very insular and myopic.

I mentioned elsewhere in the blog there is the phenomenon of unacceptable truths. Something may be true accurate and correct, but the mind, the perception, is totally unwilling to accept it, because accepting it brings with it implications and consequences which differ from the held preferred notion or version of reality. To accept said truth causes the “reality version” to implode, crash and burn.

I know someone who found out in middle age that the person he thought was his biological father was probably not. He did not want to do a DNA test to have surety. People can tell whopping lies to each other for decades. The truth is not acceptable.

I doubt most are able to be ruthlessly and accurately honest with themselves. I added accurately because people can be overly harsh and critical. Honesty is balanced and not skewed either one way or the other.

If you think about it, even a little bit, the scope of the title question is vast. It encompasses approach to life, to death and notions of afterlife. Most people tend to be centred in the socio-political programmed common view of the world.  If you read newspapers or listen to the news, that demarcates the boundaries of the everyday “reality”.

If you meditate on the question, “do you have a preferred version of reality?” You will begin to see how many biases, preconceptions and assertions you have. There will be elements of your “reality” that you take for granted which are unbalanced and inaccurate.

What is your preferred version of reality?

Is it real?

Have You Succumbed to Evil?

As I alluded to previously people may be unaware that they have succumbed to evil. They may be practising forceful manipulation and imagine that this is good business practice. For example, the phrase leverage has the application of force implicit, and many use this phrase. Others succumb to their greed and feel justified in exercising and attempting to satiate that greed. People can imagine ambition to be noble and good. Greed is good, is a mantra to which some subscribe without even thinking.

In effect many have succumbed to the temptation of mundane power and feel justified in exercising this over their fellow humans. It does not for one second pass through their mind that they are evil. They imagine themselves just. Slaveowners thought themselves just too. Mundane power can twist perception markedly and those in / with power can exhibit a deep and combative paranoia so as to sustain that power. They can cling to power long after it is seemly. Power can make people nasty, punitive and bitter, if people are unable to handle it.

Evil people may not see themselves as evil. They might imagine themselves knights in shining armour and be certain that butter does not melt in their mouth. They will prop up this illusion with reason and shed loads of justifications. They may even convince themselves and others that they are heroic and worthy. They will be unaware that evil has taken them over.

Have you ever succumbed to evil?

How can you be certain that you have not?

Dark Pretending to be Light?

There are many who imagine themselves perhaps to be the great and the good, who are in fact not.

Perhaps the most obvious example was/is the former president of the Untied States. Make America Great Again? How? By sowing seeds of hate and division and casting doubt and aspersion on the electoral system. A nasty piece of work, methinks.

Good or evil, what do you think?

There are examples of leaders who might think that they are helping, or who at least pretend that. What they really want is power. They put their own positional and pecuniary gain first. Charity begins at home old boy…don’t you know…

Evil has by legerdemain even made discussion of evil taboo.

We can see darkness in action in Eastern Europe and it seems to be spreading to other former soviet states. Israel bombed Damascus airport “because” Iran was sending arms to Syria…There always has to be a “reason” for evil or so it seems. There must be a quasi-plausible reason for murder by high technology munitions.

Darkness uses the masks of reason and justification to politically “legitimize”. These two are amongst the primary tools of the Dark Adepts. Humans have been trained in a Pavlovian way, when in school, to worship this often unholy dual “deity”. There is always a “reason” for evil. Imaginary weapons of mass destruction were used to justify the slaughter in Iraq. Nazis in Ukraine, to excuse invasion. Nasty people want to do bad shit to others, and they use reason and justification to coerce the minds of others into partially acquiescing. It is all so reasonable old chap. Let us spin it so it does not look quite so heinous. Now bomb the Sierra out of them

In the past the English were adept at the application of evil, divide and conquer {rule}. It sounds quasi-reasonable, but it is in fact black magic.

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Do you think you are a “goodie”, one of the good guys?

Are you in fact a “baddie”?

Are you dark pretending to be light?

Please justify you answers with well argued reasoning…marks will be awarded on this basis.

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Scapegoat Quotes

The search for a scapegoat is the easiest of all hunting expeditions.

Dwight D. Eisenhower

It’s too easy to criticize a man when he’s out of favour, and to make him shoulder the blame for everybody else’s mistakes.

Leo Tolstoy

If brainstorming becomes ‘blamestorming’ by reason of time pressure or on account of pure laziness, the truth may be assaulted and unyieldingly vilified. Blamestorming becomes then downright a perfidious appeal to scapegoating with a torrent of frantic manhunts for ‘culprits on duty’. (‘Blamestorming’)

Erik Pevernagie

Scapegoating worked in practice while it still had religious powers behind it. You loaded the sins of the city on to the goat’s back and drove it out, and the city was cleansed. It worked because everyone knew how to read the ritual, including the gods. Then the gods died, and all of a sudden you had to cleanse the city without divine help.

J.M. Coetzee

The best way to avoid becoming a scapegoat is to find one.

Warren Eyster

I have this feeling that immigrants unwittingly help to keep peace between nations by being scapegoats for national ills that would otherwise be blamed on neighbours.

Agona Apell

For scapegoating to occur, a community must agree on a target who can be blamed for anything that goes wrong. Sometimes a community just needs someone to BE wrong all the time, so they can know they are right. It really doesn’t matter if the person is actually guilty or wrong, as long as everyone agrees on it. That agreement allows the community to act against the scapegoat and feel justified. They can hate, abuse, ridicule, neglect, expel, wound or kill the scapegoat and actually experience feelings of joy and well-being afterward.

Raven Foundation

Crazy how so many British people can walk into Tesco, see 30 self-service checkouts, and still believe that it’s immigrants who are taking all the jobs.

Fuad Alakbarov

Until someone is prepared to lay out the systemic problem, we will simply go through cycles of finding corruption, finding a scapegoat, eliminating the scapegoat, and relaxing until we find the next scandal.

Newt Gingrich

A scapegoat remains effective as long as we believe in its guilt.

Rene Girard

Unintelligent people always look for a scapegoat.

Ernest Bevin

During my first season at Manchester, the team was not performing, and I was the scapegoat.

Marouane Fellaini

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Vis Viva – A Journey to Sirius Chapters 3&4

Chapter 3 Hodie

Many things we do naturally become difficult only when we try to make them intellectual subjects. It is possible to know so much about a subject that you become totally ignorant.

-Mentat Text Two (dicto)


Frank Herbert “Chapter House Dune “, Gollancz,
The Orion Publishing Group, London.
Page 107 ISBN 0 575 07518 X



I had planned to talk today of the darkness within and my exploration of the feelings behind it, somehow it needs a storm to do this for I can then tune into the wildness of nature and revisit those very, very strange days. The beginning of this descent had its roots in the realisation of my own ignorance so eloquently paraphrased above. But Eric says we will sketch over it for now, because today feels like it is a good time to talk about today, though the resonances to 1995 are clear and the merry-go-round of hospital and doctors appointments is the same. This time though I am not seeking death rather, life.

Eric remembers when he first went into the office and said to Dr Depardieu that he was unwell. He remembers the questions about sleep, sex, food and alcohol. He remembers telling him about his plan to get a large amount of heroin and some syringes from work. He remembers telling him that he knew where he could get this and how he felt that this would be the best way. By touching the ephemera of the memory a tinge of sadness creeps into him. How forlorn and lost he felt then and how the temptation to end it all had been playing like a movie re-run in his mind, flickering black and white on the screen; waiting for the final credits to roll, how there was no Technicolor only black and white. He remembers sitting on that tube train and the veins in his arm screaming at him to go and do it. He knows that he has never really said this to anyone before so he is a little nervous. Dr Depardieu gave him some nice green and white pills and these helped him for a while, they bought him some time. The shame of it was a little hard to bear, he had to tell his university that he was ill and the nature of his illness, bringing in those doctors notes every couple of weeks. He felt then the margins of existence, the twilight of the deranged and the futility of the castrated man. Everything he had tried had failed and he began to cling; it was not pretty.

Enough of this then, we will return to the darkness soon, for there is much in there that is lighter than you can imagine and it needs out too. Today, he went to the hospital on his bike; to check for parking spaces and a place to lock it up. For tomorrow he visits the neurologist, later an MRI scan of his neck and brain and then the orthopaedic surgeons will look at the images of the cervical discs pressing on his spinal column. Eric is pleased with his bike, he has ridden it three times now and some of the confidence in him comes back, twenty years is a long time. He guesses it must be true; the idiom about it being just like riding a bike. He is not allowed to drive any more because he lost consciousness a week or so ago. In a strange way cycling takes him back to the carefree days of his late teen years, when he used the bike to escape the noise, to ride for miles and miles around the North Kent countryside. He knows that the medics don’t yet know what is wrong and that they are investigating; they have mentioned stroke and epilepsy. They haven’t mentioned tumour yet and he wonders if he should tell the neurologist about his dream that said he had cervical spine cancer or wait until the images are back. It is difficult to block out these thoughts as there isn’t enough data yet. He wonders if he should mention all the things that he sees and how he understands the nature of consciousness to be. He remembers that these specialists are trained in the church of reason so it might be better not to mention prescience and lucid dreaming.

Today though is fine. The heavy rains of the last few days have passed and the sun shines on the garden. All is well for now and Eric remembers the entreaty to consider every path carefully and to ask yourself only one question; is this for you a path with heart? For if there is no heart then the path will drag you down and suck away your vitality. And he remembers how many times he has asked that question and how many times he has walked away.

It brings him back to one of the things he wanted to talk about, energy. He doesn’t like that word because it has connotations, co-note-tations elsewhere and the use of it hinders. Eric prefers the word vitality. He says that as the power within grows and develops by acquiring knowledge it imbues both upon itself and the form it inhabits, a vitality and vivaciousness. It lends capacity to the form to operate in ways that it never expected and with an awareness that is sharper than before. This vitality gives a sense of time to things that differs. When beings have this, they can choose the speed at which they perceive things, they can literally speed up or slow down the perception and hence time. This speed then is under their control, it gives intensity and focus. People hunt for this vitality, perhaps the elixir of youthfulness, though it is not that. When the power within has it the eyes of the form glow with an iridescence that can be seen by some, or simply as a sparkle of joie de vivre by others. This sense of vitality is a currency for human interactions.

We can build it up in ourselves and others or we can deplete ourselves and others. People try to steal this thing from each other mistakenly thinking they can and that if they have power over another; they have real power. Whereas this vitality is true power, it is limitless and without bound, it grows as we flow in synchronicity with the universe and our fate. In a very real sense it is more extant than the illusions borne of the form and the mind. It comes from life itself and the vis viva expressing outwards from the void.

Eric says that this thing which he calls forceful manipulation is the very bane of humanity and the basis through which the construct of the world is maintained. He says that because most people live in the realms of the hungry ghosts they cannot yet see the impact of this on both themselves and the world. Ultimately this forceful manipulation is based on some form of insecurity or perception of inadequacy whether expressed through self pity or self importance. It is seen in some quarters as standing up for your rights or skill-full negotiation, yet in many of its guises it is actually quite a lot nastier than that. It is linked to dominion and dominance, man in control of his surroundings and his fate. Its detrimental effects can be seem almost everywhere and perhaps it stems from a deep, deep sense of there never being enough, if you like a hole in being-ness that pervades because mankind has in many cases lost touch with his sense of purpose.

Eric seems to remember that a number of years ago now he wrote poetry feverishly doing some three hundred poems in a couple of years. He burned them all along with all his copious note books. He deleted all his emails and all his notes on esoterica in one ceremony of cleansing the past. There was plenty of that force in him back then, he had learned well at the arcane school. He says that he no longer feels the near religious ecstasy that had driven him then. That it was all gone and it had all been folly and that he must dream now.

He has just come back from his afternoon sleep. Since he began doing dreaming practice over eight years ago now, he has practised dreaming, he describes it as a meditative technique used to open up the doorway to the power within, if you like a channel of communication with his inner being. He learned to let this guide him as it appeared there was purpose to this, it seemed to know what it was doing even if it did make for a somewhat non-linear approach to life.

He tells me before he did this formally; he did martial arts as a sort of walking meditation and is reminded how, when he used to run, timing the slip-slap-slip of his running to his breath was a way of bringing the form more consciously under his control. The martial arts opened something else in him and his body began to behave in a way that was much more economical. Later he developed listening to music as a way of doing meditation, he doesn’t know how he knew how to do it, yet he says if you listen very carefully to music and concentrate only on that; it stills the mind. Further if you open your heart to the music it guides you. When he was recovering from the darkness he let the emotions present in music take him to places he had never thought he could go; making it experiential in ways that were quite special.

He first discovered that he really knew how to dream but only in retrospect after he had stumbled across North American Indian shamanism in a school in Hertfordshire of all places. The cynic in him found some considerable hilarity that a bunch of white people would gather, drum and go on shamanic journeys in search of guidance for their lives. He reckoned they were all making it up. He loved the drumming and to drum, the hypnotic rhythm of the drum beat running with the ebb and flow of his inner tuition taking him deeper and away from the noise and clatter of the mind. Being a bit of a rebel though, he didn’t quite do what he was supposed to do. Rather, he sank into the colour which exists in states of pure calm. He let the colour emerge from the black and the formless, taking shape first as a Rorschach ink blot of colour then slowly filling the whole dreamscape. Out of the colour, images would appear and he would follow them and let them unfold, making notes of what he saw there. He learned he could heal, clear spaces and that ritual was a very power full way of focusing intent.

Later he learned to dream by using yellow roses to focus intention before the dreamscape came. Soon all he needed was a few seconds to enter the colour and hold it firm. What came then was dream after dream after dream. This was new and exciting to him he wanted to share these dreams because that is what it seemed he was meant to do. The people around him chastised him for this. He learned to state the intent of dreaming appropriate for his dreaming class. Then somehow many years later he no longer felt that this intent was right and chose another one.

Last year he went again to a dojo, to try his hand at some judo and perhaps regain some fitness. There was something quite strange about the dojo, it was a sports dojo and had none of the reverence and atmosphere of mutual support he had found at the true dojos of his past. On his second visit they practised ippon seonage his favourite throw and perhaps the most effective of all at giving someone a good whack. Something happened to him and he drove home in a haze of dreaming colour knowing that he had changed. He found that he had herniated discs in his cervical spine; there the discs pressed down on the nerves to the left hand side of his body and directly on the spinal column itself. He could see it in the MRI scans himself. His muscles wasted and it took many months to rebuild them and regain function there.

After that his dreaming took another turn. Instead of controlling the entrance into the colour, he shifted very rapidly into another level of trance. His waking dreams had changed. Now again these last few days something has shifted, he experiences a shimmer of consciousness before entering trance. His pulse rate and metabolism slow and within a matter of a few seconds he is dreaming. Now though, the level of lucidity and awareness that he is dreaming is much less detached, the experience is somehow much deeper. His sleep dreams seem much the same as ever.

Which brings us back to paths and there are many of these and it is these that we dream in for ourselves. As ever it brings us back to the heart and the people we share our lives with. It brings us back sharply to the journey and not the destination, there to flow and to do what our inner tuition guides, there not to try to force things unwelcome on the world.

A little under two years ago I wrote that letter in which I resigned from my post as a senior lecturer at a top university. There I was responsible for the pastoral care of the students and there I had given it my all. In this university and the students there I saw many of the worst excesses of man’s impact upon others, there in a moment of clarity I realised that I was in effect cleaning up other people’s messes and putting a sticking plaster on something which was really quite badly damaged. These fine young minds were studying at the church of reason learning the arcane language and practice of concrete science. They invested all their effort towards good grades and the elusive happiness wrapped up and beckoning in the sort of career that a graduate from there might expect. In so doing perhaps attempting to fulfill the hopes and aspirations of “tennis coach” parents trying to live their lives through their children. How strange that self worth for so many was so directly linked to their apparent capacity to achieve recognition through the exam results at this arcane school. I wonder for many of them if this is a path with heart.

For many, previously at the top of the pecking order in their respective schools, it was an epiphany; now the competition was fierce and the curriculum intense, from the old school of we had it tough, so should they. It was there that many lives are to be sacrificed on the altar of academic success and “we must publish first”, so that we can be top of the premier league. There, where the techniques of politics and manipulation coupled with the weight of a famous institution ensured a good slice of research funding to maintain this status quo. Some people were quite nice but I had begun to realise over many a lunch time conversation that I no longer cared which person was getting whatever chair at which university, or who had done the best work on electro-chromism and got that big adventurous chemistry grant. Despite all the wonderful young people many of my colleagues had become to me cardboard cut outs of people playing a stereotypical game called academia, a game of the mind and most definitely not of the heart. It is however hard to imagine just how difficult it is to let something like this go. All of my adult life I had strived to get the position and now to realise it was hollow was quite a blow. The impact on me the day I sent the letter was immense. I knew in that act I was changing my whole world and irrevocably so.

I resigned, with no job to go to, put my flat on the market and looked on the internet for somewhere to live. I had asked myself when was I most happy and it was simple, those days in the Peak District before I met my first wife, before it all got so very complicated and so messy, before once again I let myself be swayed by someone else and caught up in their drama. As luck would have it this beautiful listed cottage was on the market and, as if it was intended, I am now here, in the bucolic shire writing these words. I can step out of my door and into the countryside once more.

Eric still makes me read Physics World from time to time just to keep in touch and he reminds me that the Warrior’s path is not like any other path; that everything along the way has a purpose and a meaning if only we take the care and the time to look for it. He reminds me not to squander anything I have learned; to be like that blotting paper absorbing the ink of life, for each drop of it inscribes the character and adds to the power within.

Here I am then with doubts about my health and ready to embark upon a new marriage with a woman whom I care for more than I could ever have imagined possible. I have no job. I have some money in the bank and I have this Chautauqua that presses and strains to write. I am conscious that I haven’t really let it rip yet and am warming up. I am perhaps adrift in the sea of life, I most certainly am not lost. I know that everything has a purpose. I am waiting for the power within to show the next step, unhurried, secure and ready to respond in whatever way is needed. Tomorrow is another day.

Chapter 4 A Path with Heart

No diagnosis then from Friday’s visit to the hospital, there are a lot of things that have been ruled out and I am feeling a little reassured. This gives me some quiet time to start to elaborate on what I mean by a path with heart. In a sense any path, although we might see it as achieving a goal or ambition, ultimately leads no where, for we all must die and that part of incarnate awareness which is the totality of us, in the words of the Bard, shuffles off the mortal coil. Our form disintegrates or is burned and the atoms of our vehicle are re-cycled and used by the universe for another purpose, our bits might one day end up being a plastic Tesco’s bag; who knows. In any case once the power within has left, it is not that important. The form then becomes the formless. The formless is then reorganised into something else. It is the vis viva that takes the clay of a human being and through the magic of life re-organises it into something else. If the atoms are incorporated in an organic sense then some other consciousness uses them, eventually.

What then is a path with heart? Eric says that this differs for each of us, yet deep down we all know when we are treading a path with heart and when we are not. That is the simplicity of it all. The trouble is that most people lack the honesty and live lives of denial, because they are fearful of change. It takes a great deal of courage and some considerable measure of practice to learn to listen to the heart. The heart is not all fluffy and warm, roses and sentiment. When operating fully it is powerful beyond imagination and can be quite a demanding master. For in one sense the heart, that is an expression of true feeling, is that part of the total being which is most in sync with what the power within has set us up for. In this context the heart is not the muscle which pumps our blood. It is pure feeling.

Eric says that most people get hooked on romance and idealism and use the mind to try to force this romance on the being, to an extent where after compromising the emanations of the heart for so long, it controls. The mind is the master of what he calls the first ring of power whereas the heart transcends this; it operates on the level where true inner tuition takes place. That tuition of the inner being, whether a work in progress or truly listened to, leads one on the path with heart.

Many paths first appear to be a path with heart, the mind hoping above all hope that a given direction in life will be a path with heart. The being then invests a great deal of effort in following these paths, to the point where it will vigorously defend the “fact” that this is a path with heart. Deep down though, everyone knows when they are bullshitting themselves and even those around them. When such a point is finally admitted the reluctance to change can cause all sorts of problems. The heart never lies. It is a shame that human beings do. In a sense many of us get caught up in a trap of our own making.

Consider each path very carefully and ask yourself only this. Is this for me a path with heart? This is really the only question and it is the 64 million dollar one. Everything else is just so much intellectual masturbation. For opening your heart and listening to it renders all else mundane. Eric says that this then is the bottom line. For as we traverse this, the sea of life, whenever we are faced with what appears to be a dilemma, asking this and answering honestly will enable one to gain sufficient clarity to work out what are the next steps that need to be taken.

Like all paths, it leads exactly no where, what it does though is to provide a journey of quite stupendous novelty, variety and excitement. Esoterically the path with heart is linked to the cabalistic glyph of Tiphareth and is associated with choosing between the old and the new. Every day is nascent at dawn, lived to the maximum, dies at the sunset, rests overnight and life starts the next day, fresh. Knowing full well that each day brings change and the being walking the path with heart will not be the same being on the following day. It takes guts to walk such a path.

Eric says that it might be wise to put in another quotation here.

This one is from M.F. Powers

Footprints

One night I dreamed a dream. I was walking along the beach with my Lord.
Across the dark sky flashed scenes from my life. For each scene, I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand, one belonging to me and one to my Lord.

When the last scene of my life shot before me I looked back at the footprints in the sand. I noticed that at times along the path there was only one set of footprints. I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times of my life. This always bothered me and I questioned the Lord about my dilemma.

“Lord, you told me that once I decided to follow You, You would walk with me all the way but I noticed that during the most troublesome times of my life there is only one set of footprints. I don’t understand why, when I needed You most, You would leave me.”

He whispered,

“ My precious child, I love you and would never, never leave you during your times of trial and suffering. When you see only one set of footprints it was then that I carried you. “



This then re-presents a journey through life and in choosing a path with heart, there will be times when the challenges such a choice calls forth can make one feel completely lost and abandoned. If one sticks with it, the power within guides and in a sense carries us, even when the rational mind has packed up, run away and felt very sorry for itself. The power within, leads us to do things which we might not always have the emotional wherewithal to do and makes sure that we make it through to the other side. In doing this it causes us to grow and change. At times we all feel sorry for ourselves and play the martyr.

If we choose to look at our lives for what they really are, hopefully before the last days of our sojourn here, we can always find a purpose for what has happened and if we are lucky the meaning inherent in that purpose. For it is really us, our own power within, which sets up the circumstance for us to learn, blaming others is just stupid and disempowering for everyone concerned.

If we do not take responsibility for ourselves who is going to? Is change then a path with heart?

“Be the change you wish to see in the World.”

Mohandas Gandhi


As far as I can tell most people want some form of change in their lives, yet direct the intention and responsibility for that change towards external sources, hoping that if he (or she) changes, then it would make my life better.

It is a wistful hope that is often forgotten as quickly as it arises, and then so, back to the day to day business of living. Very few people are willing to take responsibility for changing themselves, hoping that someone else will do “it” for them. The changes which they think they seek are perhaps just a tinkering around the edges of life, maybe a better holiday would do the trick…? So here is a question for you are you going to walk this most difficult of paths and see if you can find the extent and wonder of your being-ness by listening to the power within?

True change is not for the fainthearted. It is a matter of bringing the inside out, letting the spirit surface and breathe. The outer form can only present an image of the state of the inner being and true change begins inside. Once a process of change has been initiated it can come at one like a relentless tide, where the sea of change washes before it all that one once held as true.

True change is seldom welcomed with open arms, rather it often comes about because of a moment of clarity when one knows without any doubt that a way of thinking and of being is no longer tenable; that living as one has been, has in some strange way ceased to be an affair of the heart. Such moments can be initiatory of change or alternatively spark a journey of denial in an over expressed need to be right. That over expression of just how great the form side of life is must constantly be verbalised and re-enforced by others to mask the flight which the inner person much deeper down, knows that they are doing. This has consequences.

True change starts slowly as a way of being and behaving is gradually and sometimes painfully eroded. Then the shape and the constituents of a life, are stripped away, allowing a space for a new person to emerge from the chrysalis. What that being is, may bear little or no resemblance to the caterpillar it once thought it was, avariciously feeding on the substance of life and taking from all around.

True change can be said to be transmutative, transformative and perhaps transfigurational. The expense of change is a former life, the gift, a new one, heralding untold wonders of what it is to be alive; bringing with it a new found sense of purpose and meaning. Somehow, setting one apart from the crowd, who may look at you blankly because such a change is beyond the scope of their experience and as such, so very much a part of the unknown and perhaps, because of an unwillingness to change, the unknowable.

In this respect if one really does change, no one may ever notice. Because of the 99% rule which says that 99% of people think only of themselves 99% of the time, many will miss what has been an act of magic, worked at over a great many years.

Eric says that there is only one way to go and that is to walk as gently on the earth as possible, trying to not impose petty wants and desires upon others and taking from the world only what it is that is truly needed. And that life is a journey of learning and of approaching, leaving as few footprints as possible on the rice-paper world whilst having the best impact one can.

This then is a path with a heart, we do not own the world; we can celebrate our incarnation by making our lives an expression of the emanations of our hearts as we dance the pattern of our existence, hand in hand with the power within.

Superheroes and Delusions

We have been watching Ragnarök {Ragnarøkkr} and The Matrix Resurrections. In each of these the “baddies” try to convince the “goodies” by means of psychiatry and/or medication that they are off their rocker. The major protagonists Thor and Neo are delusional, obvs. Views of reality inconsistent with those held by the powerful “baddies” are deemed sufficiently divergent to warrant psychochemical intervention and control.  

Neither of these gentlemen is a particularly willing superhero and it seems in terms of plot development that doubt in self and ability is a necessary trait / process to be a superhero.

When I was having my adult Asperger’s assessment the psychologist thought that I may have the “unrelenting standards” life-trap, partially because I was using the word impeccable a lot. People who are high functioning can have this trap or schema, but it usually is around self-criticism and striving. I have looked into it, and I do not have this trap, I do try to be impeccable, though. Impeccability does not require any striving or excelling. I saw her only a few days after my colon cancer operation, which she also thought odd. I was “supposed” to be fearful and concerned about my cancer.  She did not think I had Asperger’s but would need to talk to relatives to confirm according to the rulebook. This was not possible due to death of relatives and so we left it there.

There is a strange situation, most psychologists / psychiatrists will not have meditated as extensively as me. Nor will they have worked hard at losing attachment. Their whole interpretive basis would not fit very well. Being detached might be diagnosed as some social and developmental problem. It would be handy to do many of the whole host of agreed and standardised tests to see what kind of label(s) might apply.

It might be interesting to see which pigeonhole(s), if any, I would be shoehorned into. It is probably not a good idea to open this Pandora’s box. I am sure that some people would struggle to get their head around the entirety of my world view.

Viewed from the angle of a Buddhist practitioner it is a moot point as to who is living in illusion/delusion.

Are you caught and held by/in the Matrix in reality or metaphorically speaking?

Who is delusional, the goodies or the baddies?

Natural Processes are Irreversible – “Like Tears in Rain”

Most sentient beings would accept this statement depending upon what natural encompasses. This is why perpetual motion machines do not exist. It does not distinguish man made as natural. No man made process is fully reversible, a partial or apparent reversibility might exist. But time on the macroscopic scale cannot yet be wound back. One might draw a sword and then put it back in the scabbard, the undoing of drawing a sword. You as a person would have changed because you have had the experience of drawing the sword. The process of re-sheathing the sword looks like reversibility only it isn’t. The energetics are different.

People including scientists forget thermodynamics and forget the notion of irreversibility. Once you have done something you cannot undo it. Life is not like a text editing programme. Life does not have an undo button. People do stuff which they think they can subsequently get out of. They may be able to escape the societal consequences of trespass. Whatever way you look at it, if you wrong another being you have changed the entire world, if only a little globally but perhaps significantly locally.

You can’t un-break a leg, you can repair it.

You can’t put sperm back into a testicle once it has been deposited into a vagina.

Stuff ripples out. People who are selfish and self-centred do not see this because of their auto-proctological perspective.

Petty acts of deception and vengeance can have untold and far reaching consequences. They can become epicentres of karma, sometimes high on the Richter scale. A lie told can destroy lives. A truth hidden can require a lifetime of covering up. Problems not addressed in a timely manner can blow up out of all proportion. I have observed situations where lies lead to further lies and more intricate ones. People who believe they can blag their way out of anything can find themselves painting themselves into a corner or digging a hole. People can forget what they blagged and to whom. Student pastoral care offers a glimpse of escalating pork pies {lies} on occasion. Smart kids think they are smarter than old farts, maybe they are, maybe not.

This notion of irreversibility is a corner stone of impermanence.

If you attain both irreversibility and impermanence you are on the way.

Life is short, irreversible and impermanent. Therefore, how you use your allotted time is highly significant. There are only these fleeting moments of the eternal now. Whatever you do you cannot undo, your thoughts, words and actions ripple out into the wider whole. If you lie and scheme you add poison into the world. If you love and care, compassion.

I have met people who are venomous and vampiric. I have met fewer who are genuinely altruistic and compassionate.

Have you ever done something which has caused consequences to ripple out in a way that you never imagined?

Have you ever been able to reverse any act of yours?

If you avoid apparent societal consequences, have you gotten away with it in the eyes of the universe and on the scales of karma?

Can you really fully blag your way out?

How are you going to use your remaining fleeting moments of the eternal now?

Petty Quotes

The world perishes not from bandits and fires, but from hatred, hostility, and all these petty squabbles.

Anton Chekhov

I’ve found men are less likely to let petty things annoy them.

Marilyn Monroe

Don’t sweat the petty things and don’t pet the sweaty things.

George Carlin

We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office.

 Aesop

Great wisdom is generous; petty wisdom is contentious. Great speech is impassioned, small speech cantankerous.

Zhuangzi

The petty man is eager to make boasts yet desires that others should believe in him. He enthusiastically engages in deception yet wants others to have affection for him. He conducts himself like an animal yet wants others to think well of him.

Xun Kuang

Too often, we see wedge politics and petty rhetoric used to belittle adversaries and inflame partisan divisions.

Larry Hogan

Divorce is a 50-50 thing, and it can be a number of petty things that finally drive you out of your mind.

Lee Radziwill

The man of petty ambition if invited to dinner will be eager to be set next his host.

Theophrastus

Men are separated by so many petty things.

Aaron Huey

I used to spend my money on going to Tom Petty concerts.

Chris Stapleton