Drinking My Way to Enlightenment

I recently I conducted an inventory of sorts. In a muddle, I wrote my way to a better understanding of myself. Prior to my break from blogging, the time I spent conducting my inventory, I had managed to connect the Kundalini and that was exciting. I have connected the Kundalini before, but this go-round, is dissimilar to the experience I have known in the past. The connection that is the Kundalini brought into focus the disorder in my life and I quickly fell to the task of sorting it out.

For some time I have struggled with my habit of boozing. I like to drink and rekindled my drinking habit in 1999. I decided to begin a habit of drinking everyday. It was part of an overall effort to reconnect with my extended family of friends. It has been a long time since I realized that success and I am now well grounded by way of friendship. When I made my decision to drink, I expected that I would one day have to scuttle the habit and that day has been realized. While I do enjoy drinking, I prefer to be sober. If only I could do both.

I tend to be a person of extremes and so when my habit is everyday boozing, I tend to drink more than some people would think is prudent. I can and have moderated my habit to accommodate my excessive tendencies. Moderate drinking, by me, tends to be a lot of drink by some standards. Previously when I quit drink things were quite bad. Literally having ruined my life, and drinking being a big part of that, the decision to quit was one of last resort. Pretty easy. It also forced me to address the underlying cause of much of my habit at the time. Pain management. I had compacted my seventh thoracic vertebra and broken my neck in two different motorcycle accidents. I had ignored these injuries and done nothing to rehabilitate myself. To deal with the pain, I drank. I measured the strength of my drink by the strength of my pain. It ruined my life. I quit and spent two years out of work rehabilitating myself. The injuries were a direct result of my recklessness. A determination to force God to intervene in my life, by some kind of spontaneous enlightenment, or for attrition to end my life before I had lived long enough that I would have to take personal responsibility.

My drinking habit of late is by some standards excessive but it is in no way comparable to my youthful foolishness. At my age, drinking as much now as I did when I was young, would leave me destitute, unable to be socially productive.

Quitting without a crisis is a different animal. My decision is just a matter of personal preference. Instead of having a drink, I decide not to, over and over again. A bit tedious. All of the idiosyncrasies of my person continue to support the habit I invested so many years and my reputation in. I have every reason to believe that they will be replaced by a person more to my liking and healthier habits will emerge. That is happening and it is easier to keep my growing resolve as time slips past.

My habit has been to drink in the evening and I have been wanting, perhaps, a tea to enjoy instead. I finally did shop for tea. I first just looked at straight herbs and was lost. I stumbled across a blend, in the herbal tea aisle,  that had Kava Kava in it and then I thought, oh, Kava. I chose bulk Kava Kava to make my tea. Very nice. After a few days I remembered the therapeutic application of Kava in treating anxiety and that changing my boozing habit is an obvious trigger for anxiety. I am quite pleased with my choice and the tea is very nice. It has a texture and flavor that is soothing.

What I have noticed, since I put down the bottle, is the counterproductiveness of my boozing habit. I had imagined it was a way to relieve stress at the end of the day. Nothing could be further from the truth. It simply reinforced the expectation that the day was stressful and that I was in need of relief. In this way it caused of much of the stress for which I sought relief. Absent the decision to drink, I find that I am also absent  much of the imagined incentive.

I had become isolated from friends and the support that accompanies friendship. Drinking was a way for me to prioritize those relationships by being less spiritual in my affairs. I did make myself known again as a rather ordinary sort enjoying the party and the good time. In the end booze was creating more stress than it possibly could relieve and my friendships had always been independent of it. It remains to be seen what impact its absence will have on my overall well-being. Will it be instrumental in restoring the richness I once knew in my spiritual life?

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2014

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An Empty Promise; Fulfillment

As I take my spirit walk, working to reconcile my temporal nature with something more complete, something spiritual, I write. I rarely have an idea other than to write and I discover the content of my work just as you do when you read it. When I am not writing content for this blog, I am still writing, writing what could only be helpful to me. I do write plenty of social-political content and that all winds up, for the most part, on Facebook. I love to write. I realized, by way of my awkward writing ritual, that I needed to be very direct about my relationship with God. To write of it here on my blog.

What is this God? How do I explain God? Certainly much of my blog answers these questions and yet I have come to believe that being more forthright is required if I am to grow into my appointment, the elimination of potential by way of realizing it. Writing as the Tourist I have hoped to avoid building a box and calling it God. It is not our place to define God. God self-represents and so definition is needless. Pointless. The definitions we have given God have created God. A God in our image and likeness, a false God.

To my mind, It seems that cognition, sentiency, awareness, being, the ability to appreciate experience, are as is everything else of which yourself, myself, everything is comprised. I believe that these conditions are independent of physiology. That like everything else that is, they are. My temporal form is not required and these qualities are manifest in its absence. I believe in creation. I believe it is what is. It is the only thing that ever happens, it is constant and perpetual, infinite. There is no end to it or beginning. Without it nothing exists and every, any possibility, is known because of it. We are imbued with its authority and that greater authority is of God, or perhaps, God also is of that authority, yet we are not the greater authority. I believe, that of the ability to be self-aware, there is what is like, but is not a human person , and that it is God. That, God existence, would know us and would that we would know it. It seems a person might empty their self in such a way as to be with God and I have spent my life swinging back and forth between thinking I will make this discovery, or not be bothered. I am always pressed with the urgency of this decision and it dominates my life. I have found that I am happiest when I pursue it. I spent twelve years being outraged; I thought it was outrageous that I should be dominated by such sensibilities as a sense of devotion to God.

Ego is the fundamental challenge in knowing God. Perhaps God has no ego. Ego is not inclined to be empty, it wants to be full as well as to fill the circumstance that is its place. The emptiness that is, can not be filled, and ego then makes the effort to fill it a waste of its time. You can take nothing with you when your time is spent. There is a desperation in that and ego is keen to express it.

Some spiritually minded people believe the ego must be defeated, destroyed, if enlightenment or spiritual fulfillment is to be realized. I do not. I believe it must be reconciled with origin and destination, to be in a state of approval, contentment, of satisfaction. To be without want, content with what is. Poverty nor wealth matter. The law is of abundance and all conditions support it. When we let go of everything that fails to fulfill us we are left with what does.

Such is my consideration in matters of being with God. There is no possibility of making this an accomplishment and that is difficult for the ego. The ego must reach a state of acceptance, of letting what is be and of being what is. To abandon the effort of making more of it or making ruin of it. Either posture is that of ownership which we all know is naught. We leave life as we found it taking nothing but rather we give to it. We give what we have created as that is our only authority.

When I think of fulfillment, as a human temporal presence, I look to be divine. To be what is incarnate, as well as what animates us and yet is not incarnate. An awareness of self that precedes and succeeds the brevity of my so-called life.

Michael, The Mystic Tourist ©2014

God Is Not A Mystery

God

Secular Mysticism; Faithless Confidence in God.

When I write that I am without faith, I am being specific. I am without religious faith. My faith is of a secular nature and is a confidence entirely and only in God. I believe in God. My life is dominated by God. I trust no dogma concerning God. No God I would care to know needs an intermediary and those who claim God does, implied or otherwise, are undeserving of my trust in this regard.

This God, whom I claim is my singular devotion, who is this God? I consider that God is inescapable. Even if God is naught, then that is the God that can not be escaped. It is not possible to remove yourself from the experience that is God and so I think God would know each of us personally. Directly, without intermediary, so I know God. We all do.

Like all people, influence runs roughshod over my life experience. I consider the influence that fills my life to be born of Providence, that is to say, it is directed by God, and through my devotion to God, this is how it has shaped me.  I am a Taoist, not because I have studied it but because that is the nature of my life. I live that way. I was raised a Christian under the auspices of Catholicism. I believe Jesus was as I am because that is the only Jesus that makes sense to me. Time alone, is what separates me from Jesus and so we are the same. He made an example of how any person might live. That was his purpose, his example and expectation of me. I do not believe the words, of others, who tell me who and how he is. I am confident that whatever he did, the same might be expected of any of us and so I live as if it is.

Did God create me? I believe God gave me permission to create myself and there is expectation in that gift, an obligation, or appointment to be kept. Only in keeping my appointment do I stand with God. I have not always been keen on keeping my appointment but I am making the effort again. I think that what each of us is capable of is largely ignored, and I, have a history of taking that as a personal insult, of being angry. The world we live in, the way things seem, we create. We are imbued with creative authority. We each use this authority, collectively for the most part, pretending all the while that we do not. This would be our primary, or original sin, ignorance, and the message Jesus endeavored to teach us. We are as he was and that is made clear because a woman gave him birth. There is no mystery in that.

What do I think of the stories that tell us Jesus performed miracles? I think they are stories. I do not believe in miracles. I believe if Jesus did, what people call miracles, that it was an example of our true nature. An example to emulate. Something that he considered ordinary, something anyone might do and so he did. He set aside his ignorance and the denial it creates. With that out-of-the-way he behaved as anyone else might, or, it is just a story. Fiction. The truth concerning this can be known, not as an exercise of sophistication, but rather as a matter of acquaintance. Knowledge, in matters spiritual, absolute truth and the like, is always by acquaintance and never by sophistication. The Tree of Knowledge is known for its sinful fruit, usually referred to as good and evil, but I have come to understand the fruit of this poisonous tree to be right and wrong. Right implies ownership which always corrupts the true nature of knowledge which is always, as a matter of truth, merely acquaintance. Right also creates wrong, it must because it does not exist without it. That is the nature of the Tree of Knowledge whose seed is ignorance. You can also read of the Tree of Knowledge in the Book of Genesis. I would not recommend it but as a reference I mention it.

It has been some time since I have added to my blog, not that I have not been busy, I write daily. Writing is a tool for my personal growth. It is always personal and at times unsuitable for publication. Of late that has been the nature of my writing, unsuitable for publication. I seem to have been taking a spiritual inventory that can serve only me. I hope to be back to The Mystic Tourist and wherever it leads now that I have made this contribution. We shall see. For a blog post this one is considerably longer than I prefer and so I will leave you with an apology for that and my hope to make regular, yet brief, contributions as we go forward.

Micheal, The Mystic Tourist ©2014