The Humanization of the Mystic

The chakras. I have discovered that the binding of my seven primary chakras, as one, had been compromised by a dearth of optimism. Rationally, I knew to be optimistic and had assumed that would suffice. This assumption, that knowing the importance of optimism sufficed, as being optimistic, was so casual that it was nothing more than ignorance. I had not thought about it. Such is the way life lives us while we imagine we are living life. Life has a lesson for us to learn and then an application, or appointment, to test our condition. The absence of optimism, my ignorance of it, was as the log in my eye while I tried to see the speck. I could not see.

This corruption of optimism was seeded in my life nearly two decades ago, during a time of crisis, much of which was beyond my control. I let that overwhelm me and I retreated from my best option. An option that did not seem available. I could not see a way to avoid an extended period of misery. Misery that someone else designed and intended for me. My failure was in seeing things in this way. The life I expected was to be ruined and I was charged with salvaging the lives of my children from the wreckage. That all came to pass. Had I considered this without a sense of misery and wreckage, I would have kept optimism intact. I did not and optimism fell from my list of concerns. My adversary had intended to destroy me and was in a position to realize a good measure of that. I have yet to recover financially and that has been tough, but now, I have found my discarded optimism.

Rationally, I had not blamed anyone else for the challenges I faced, but without optimism, that is a moot point.

So now what? There is a visual aspect of mysticism, I can see the spiritual world. I have seen it, but not for some time. I get glimpses of it, yes, and the memories are a pillar of strength. It is the fleeting glimpse and the memories that have kept my resolve intact. Now with optimism, I have seen my home again. It has brought the higher chakras to, place/flesh, the first chakra. It literally turns on the light – the sixth chakra is Light Gate. When the awareness of the lower three chakras rises to the seventh chakra, Spirit Gate, you can see the spiritual world and the Kundalini is complete, the chakras united as one. The fourth chakra is Compassion, it is the bridge chakra that permits the union of the higher and lower chakras. Turns out that without optimism it does not work. Go figure.

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2013

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When Love Fails

Love. What is love? Is it just a choice we make to insulate our emotions from less desirable feelings? Do we love others or is love something we have for our self that we in turn share with others? It is very personal and I expect that no one can love another without first loving their self. We may be part of a community that helps us to love our self and we may truly regard another person, so affectionately, that we are in love. People who love must love themselves if there is to be any love for others.

There are many expressions of love. Love of family and friends, of people in general, of life, of different things and activities, and no discussion of love is complete without the illusive complication that is romantic love.

Let us look at romantic love. Different cultures approach it differently and have different considerations. Across all cultures, I think our hopes and aspirations concerning love, are largely the same and this is true for romance. Certainly love is fraught with failure. It only takes one participant to ruin a marriage and family. Those who are innocent bystanders in such a failure are left to make the best of it and often the salvage falls to one person who steps up to carry the load. This of course is the case when children are involved and a marriage has become poisonous. In such a situation one person can be the difference while the other is so toxic as to threaten everyone’s welfare. Of course both parents in a failed marriage can be supportive and work for the good of the family. That is so easy, so obvious and simple but it is rarely the case. Often neither parent consider the best path forward.

Love is very personal and romantic love is as personal as we get. When a loved one uses this intimacy to harm their partner the violation is durable. Such a person does not love their self or they would not do such a thing. I think, the cause of this sort of dysfunction is often due to misplaced worth. Many people think it is someone else’s responsibility to make them happy. When this type is not happy, they blame the person they have charged with the task, of their happiness, for the failure.

When love fails badly where can a person turn for the resolve to do and build what seems best? It is important not to treat a toxic ex in kind, especially while the marriage is coming apart and then while raising children in the aftermath. There is something that is not love, it is similar but it is not fragile and it has a strength that is inexhaustible; compassion. Compassion is indifferent. It makes no judgement of worth. It is enough. We can choose not to make our self available to it but it is always available. There is no weight greater than it and it can not break. It can not have, and knows, no favorite. Its measure is the same no matter what, it is boundless. We choose it and it is there.

Compassion is an absolute because of its qualities or at least its qualities demonstrate its absolute nature. I consider absolutes touchstones for whatever God might be. It would be a failure to define God and so I am comfortable with whatever God might be and when I consider God I do so by observation of the absolutes; compassion, truth and understanding. When we define God we simply create God in our own image and we all know how troublesome that has been. I have no concern for what God might think of me, if God can even do such, and instead, I strive to do what is best. I do not care about being right or wrong. I see right and wrong as the two sides of the same worthless coin whose purchase has no value. In doing what is best it is not possible to be wrong and there is no need to be right.

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2013

A Vacancy of Optimism

In wondering what might be amiss in my life and looking to divine an answer, I was directed to seek the counsel of an ascendant being. Someone from the eighteenth century, a historical figure, but I had no idea who it might be. I decided I would find the person’s name by Googling eighteenth century historical figures. From there I chose the ten most influential figures and discovered James Watt. I asked James to help me and he did. Thanks James.

You are thinking, what is an ascendant being? Some people refer to them as saints, I do not care for the term as it implies superiority and that to my mind is a lie. An ascendant being is simply a person who is no longer repeating the cycle of incarnation. They have not so much escaped it as thy have come to understand it. They have resolved their ego to also be their soul. It is an act of forgiveness, but forgiveness needs to be for the self. Not some other self, but yourself. If you can forgive that person then you are done and you have forgiven all for everything.

I have been a bit self-deprecating but I have not understood why. Like any bad condition, without correction, it just gets worse. That is no accident, just natures way of focusing our attention. I have tried all sorts of things to curb this poor habit of thought and have expected I would somehow turn a corner and get past it. On working with James I was directed to restore hope to my attitude by replacing self-deprecation with optimism. Well that makes perfect sense. I had lost my sense of optimism back in 1994 and 1995 and I needed to return to those times to release the emotional anchors that bound me there. After I did that James advised me that I needed to identify four words that would replace my history of self-deprecation. Optimism, self-respect, self-control and opportunity. Wow, works like magic.

Of course I did not realize that I had forgotten to be optimistic, had I realized that I would have changed it a decade or more ago. Thanks James, you were a huge help. Now let’s see what I can do with my life. Is this the turning point I have been working toward?

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2013

Our Miraculous Nature

We either have a miraculous nature, or we don’t. If we do it is not something that is particular to just one person, it must be a trait we all share. If we do have this authority, then the world we experience is its product. It is active and we are its masters. It would also be true that ignorance is the throne from which we rule. How then might a person retrieve this authority from behind the seal of denial, in the void that is ignorance? The tomb from which its ghost haunts us.

Why believe we have creative authority, a miraculous nature, that we are magical?

I abandoned religion some forty plus years ago but my interest in this lies in my Catholic upbringing. Today there are touchstones from that cultural tradition that stoke my curiosity. The story of the miraculous nature of Jesus Christ, of course, and the legend of Solomon. Francis Bacon is an interesting character of which many interesting stories have been told. A modern example of magic-like control, are the well documented talents of Wim Hof. My observations lead me to be sure that we control much more than we allow ourselves credit for.

How then might a person discover this understanding of our nature? Well the first thing is to accept that it might actually be true. People have profound experiences as a matter of everyday life. Stuff that seems supernatural. Much of this can be dismissed, by further investigation, and some of it can not. Basic communication is an interesting topic to explore. How many times have you wondered, who is staring at me, only to turn your head and see the person? That is communication, however, do we understand it?

There are a lot of exercises a person can do to develop intuition. One of my favorites is to know when a traffic light will change, to sense it, and be on mark. You can imagine what is in the mailbox, and be on mark. Whether or not the newspaper has arrived and so on. This develops intuition or psychic skills. For a time I was quite skilled at this sort of thing, now, it is all hit and miss. Not sure why. Subtlety is the rule. Any ownership compromises success in matters of spiritual truth. What have I owned? Maybe it is a variation, along the lines of ownership, that I do not quite understand. I have thought it might be reluctance and have worked to be more open, transparent, honest. In the meantime my success is sputtering along, waiting for the round peg in the round hole.

My life is no less spiritual. It is as if someone is standing beside me asking if I am going to come along with them. I answer yes and yet that does not seem to be the required answer. It keeps me wondering, is there an action, a behavior lacking? I know the answer is immediately at hand, but what is it? I will guess that my resolve is the answer and an epiphany is to be expected, a sudden realization of what has been obvious all along.

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2013

The Psychology of Faith

The comfort of religion is born of faith. It stills the turmoil of question and wonder, giving it a reservoir where it can be kept safe and not trouble us. We turn to faith when life’s difficulties give rise to doubt. We make it our resolve and forgo the question, taking comfort in an answer that is faith. It is a path to confidence that frees a person from all sorts of troubling details. A person of faith, will form the rational supporting their faith, into a structure that protects faith, isolating faith from challenge. A fortress in which faith is fortified and faith also has a community. The faith-based community is a source of strength and support providing exclusive opportunity. Displaying the symbols of faith sends easily recognizable signals and opportunity falls in your lap. Faith gives us psychological tools by which we defend and promote our self. These tools plug us into a larger web of supportive cultural psychology. All of this lends a person resolve and confidence.

Faith is as a shortcut to confidence. Confidence does not need it but faith is useless without confidence.

Does faith help? Is it good? I think it depends on the individual, pretty much like everything else. When a person is rigid in their belief, I think that their faith has injured them. Blinded them. When the person of faith is flexible, that individual taps into something much deeper. Something true. It is not their faith so much that they value but the tenants of it that allow flexibility and accommodation. To be accepting without judgement, a truly supportive person. Each person, whether they have faith, or not, chooses the tenants of their character and I think faith is as valuable a resource for building a respectable and admirable character as any other choice. After all, good people are needed in the faith-based community, just as they are needed everywhere else and you will find them there.

Some of the most remarkable people I have ever known draw their strength from their faith. These are people who are admired by nearly everyone they know. People who are as an anchor, giving community a bearing of durable value. Of course the opposite is as true. The empty drum does make the loudest noise and some people of faith, just aren’t very nice. Judgmental, pious, self-righteous but you do not need faith to be an ass and faith really has little to do with it. Poor behavior, by a person making a show of their faith, gives the faith-based community a black eye, but it shouldn’t. Behavior is particular to the individual.

Me, I have no faith. I just believe things to be as they are. Things can only be as they are, there is no other possibility. Everything is self-evident and can be observed. To me that is God. I am aware, I am a cognizant sentient being and I do not believe that cognition, sentience or awareness depend on physiology to exist. I think they exist with or without it and that we create reality. Creation is a constant and we have creative authority.

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2013

The Vacancy of Now

The future already exists. It must exist because it consists entirely of the past. Our experience of it is skewed by our life and death. We tend to cling to false importance. We want to secure some lasting value but our animal condition will not last. We seek ownership, of something that will demonstrate our value, and that is a contradiction. Ownership is a lie, nothing can be owned. We confuse ownership with things like responsibility, accountability, honesty, forgiveness, truth, compassion and understanding. Stuff that actually has value. These values make a purchase of themselves and their value is in their generosity. They afford no pride of ownership as they are for the equal benefit of everyone and everything. None of these qualities are the sort of thing a person can take ownership of, they are their own value.

How then to make the future absent the difficulties of the past? Typically people will engage in established norms of education and employment, we will strive to establish and maintain nurturing relationships, friendships. Much of this only severs as a distraction, a mask for our sense of vacancy. I guess everything is like that, and for me, I believe that happiness and contentment can be discovered and their value then produce the trappings of success. Success is measured differently for different people, but happiness and contentment bring success to all circumstance and so if we discover those, before we set out, whatever we do, is success. I think many of us believe we need external trappings to be happy, we set out to secure those and worry about contentment and happiness later. Many of us are just naturally content and happy. For me, I remember a time of great happiness, a time past and so it must also be in my future, because, wait for it… the future is made of the past. I am happy today, especially when I write. The happiness I lost was that of a young boy. It is hard to imagine being that happy, but I was. What displaced it?

As a young man, I made some very poor choices. I expected to end my life by attrition. It was my way of flipping off God and the elements of society that fell short of my expectation. I considered it performance art and expected it to convey some deep meaning, a message of outrage to humanity for its shortcomings, I had an anger I simply could not contain toward God. I did not like being mystic, and, I could not escape it. I abandoned education, failing to graduate even high school. To this day I am unable to motivate myself scholastically. I am still motivated, only by mysticism, devotion to God. In my sense of God, anything that alludes to God is of an absolute nature and so devotion to God encompasses everything, all concerns and relationships find their completion and satisfaction by the absolute context of devotion to God. I do think there is something about mysticism that is of value, that my pursuit of it will bring me the success I need to live comfortably, affording the food and shelter that I desire.

It is strange to be in pursuit of my interests, of the life that motivates me and not be so angry about it. Imagining that could actually build something of value with it. Had I made these investments forty-four years ago, where might I be now? Oh well, I could not do it then, I was just too angry. Why? Did I have to go through all of it, all the trouble I made for myself? Perhaps I did.

Let us hope it is not too late to salvage the worldly success that was the promise of my birth circumstance and that I so forcefully worked to destroy.

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2013

Mystical Money

My decision to make a business using mystic creativity has created a shift in my disposition, as if I finally decided to fit the round peg into the round hole. In the past few months, I have been irritable. I believe that everything has purpose and the purpose of my irritability is to draw my attention to its underlying cause. As the passage of time has drawn me closer to the realization of using my creativity for marketing purposes, to sell merchandise, I am both sure that it is what I have to do and dismissive of the idea as implausible. Irritability. The disposition that brings cessation to my irritability is the decision to go ahead and develop a market. Having poured considerable thought into this idea I have finally put a little money into it as well. I have researched options for manufacturing merchandise and ideas for marketing are beginning to gel. The thing that has, at least for now, curbed my irritability are the steps I have taken to actually set the business in motion. I now have a fictitious business name and have applied for a business licence. Having taken these steps my irritability seems to have evaporated, disappeared. Hopefully this exercise in psychology will also produce a worthwhile business adventure.

What exactly is mysticism? Is it unique to people like me? Am I somehow different? I see mysticism as what we are all doing. Each of us walking in the dark, on our way to where we already are, hoping to realize some lasting value or meaning in exchange for our experience, our existence. A person like me, who is mystic, believes wholly in providence. I live a life dominated by God. I need to accept everything on God’s terms, believing that providence is the guiding hand of God and it alone will satisfy me if only I observe and follow its direction. So what do I think of God? I think God is, or, God is naught. It makes no difference as things can not be different than they are. No God worth knowing could be offended and I have no fear of God, only reverence. I let God define God and am not the least bit concerned about what the definition might be. I believe that what can be considered absolute, is indicative of God and I hold those qualities to be of the greatest value. Compassion, Understanding and Truth.

As my temporal expression slips into the emptiness of time, lost to the past and absent in the future, I imagine that time is like a telescope, with but one way to properly function. The only lens that is of any value is now, but it is not usual for any of us to find ourselves wholly here now. Generally we scatter our self across the past and future, which don’t really exist except in one sense, they are the same thing and the only way to make sense of it is to be present, in full, now. The past and the future are the same because the past is carried into the future making it what is past. We create the whole thing in the only time that actually exists, now. When we are here now, creation is understood and being here now is a matter of alignment, like a mystical key. The alignment is also a process. An investment of time and choice. Actions and behaviors that build a way and place to be. A place that already exists. It is much different to do this privately than to do it publicly, the alignments are less familiar but I think it can be done and that it is what I have to do. I shall continue to puzzle it together and write about it here on my blog.

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2013