I will dance in eternity

How to change the world by changing yourself

I will dance in eternity

Category: Reflections

Ma'at

Ma’at

Maat or ma’at (thought to have been pronounced *[muʔ.ʕat]), also spelled māt or mayet, was the ancient Egyptian concept of truth, balance, order, law, morality, and justice. Ma’at was personified as a goddess regulating the stars, seasons, and the actions of both mortals and the deities, who set the order of the universe from chaos at the moment of creation. Estimated to be 2,000 years older the Forty-two Declarations of Purity of Ma’at are a group of precepts that codified ethical behaviour and are the source of the Judeo-Christian “Ten” Commandments. The word, Maat translates “that which is straight.”

The world would benefit from re-introducing this concept of balance and truth.

Enlightenment

The road to enlightenment

For Angelina

The road to enlightenment has many dark corners:
The conflict between your intentions and with false desires that deviate you away from the noble path;
The greed of others who would leech your strength with flattery and confuse the route with detours;
The Sirens who would have you confuse self-sacrifice, that leads to want and unhappiness, and selflessness which leads to oneness and love.

But the road enlightenment is a well-lit road if your intention is true.
It has disciplines, rather than strictures, but those disciplines lead to your fulfilment and balance.
It is the middle way that recognises that we are both human and spirit and that for harmony you requires the love for both;
To love as a mother love’s a child,
To love as a sister loves a brother,
To love as a friend,
To love as a lover:
These are aspects of the higher love, the divine love which shapes the universe.

We all create our own road to enlightenment through many lifetimes.
These lives are the gift of the living,
Because life is quick and life brings changes and joy to the otherwise unchanging spirit.
Do the Angels change?
Or come at your call with all their primordial power intact?
Or maybe they have changed slowly over the aeons to reflect the change in human minds?
Your life is a gift, not just to you, but to the cosmic dance of eternity that is the evolution of God in all her aspects.

So child of dharma cast aside the shadow and walk your path of wonder in certainty and light.

Love of Money

Money

Do not chase money, as chasing money makes it run away ever faster.

Focus instead on what you can achieve and your achievements will attract wealth and abundance to you.

Attachment

Attachment

I read a posting on Facebook that said:

 “Try not to confuse attachment with love. Attachment is about fear and dependency and has more to do with love of self than love of another.

Love without attachment is the purest love because it isn’t about what others can give you because you’re empty. It is about what you can give others because you’re already full.”

In my dictionary attachment is not about fear nor about dependency.

The attachment of a parent for its child, for a friend, for a lover is an expression of the different types of human love. Human love, even with its faults, in all its forms, is a reflection of divine love. Humanity evolves through familial love, through the platonic love of friends and through learning the difference between lust and love with those we enjoy erotic and sensual love.

Love without attachment is detached and abstract and separates you from the oneness. To understand the divine, look within and understand yourself.

Attachment is a giving of a part of yourself to others. Do not fear attachment; rather accept it as a gift that draws you closer to the oneness since selfless love is reflected in your soul as you in turn are loved by others.

What does it mean to be human?

What does it mean to be human?

We are pure energy, but energy expressed in the sympathetic vibration of the trillions of individual energies that make us up. If these energies did not vibrate together in sympathetic harmony then our individual self could not exist. We would die and the atoms that make us up would be recycled into other forms.

It has taken all the time since the beginning of the Universe for these primeval energies to evolve into the complex form of a conscious human. We as individuals are therefore precious to the Universe as through human consciousness and creativity the Universe itself evolves further. Whilst we may appear to be simply a physical expression of complex chemical reactions, the underlying harmonies that make us an individual are physical expression of the non-physical. That is to say we are the conscious manifestation of the Universal and it is through such manifestations that the cosmic dance evolves. Our role as individuals is therefore paramount, if only we would recognise it.

Our creativity and ability to evolve to ever greater achievements, even if we make mistakes on the way, is what makes us human and what makes the role of humanity so exciting in the dance through eternity.

 

Intentions

Good Intentions

The world is full of people with a lot of good intentions, but intention and action are often out of kilter. One important change anyone can make to their lives is to recognise the importance of the “now”. This is the ability to shut out the noise and focus on what is happening in each moment. For example, when you sip a glass of wine, or taste a morsel of food, being able to focus entirely on that action will enhance the experience considerably. Whereas if, while you drink your wine or chew your food, you are thinking about the things you need to do next, or reliving the events of the day, then the experience of the food and drink is diminished.

The same is true of intentions. At any moment, you can decide to do or not to do things that will enhance and change your life. How many times will the voice in your head distract you from your intention and purpose (“oh a quick game of FreeCell[1] first”, or “what will people think if I do that”, or “I’ll have plenty of time tomorrow”). Living in the now allows you to recognise this voice and through recognition, you have the choice to either be distracted, or to fulfil your intention.

It has been my intention, since an early age to grow and understand the reality in which we find ourselves and, with that, the desire to communicate and give comfort and happiness to others; to help give meaning to all our lives. One early ambition was that everyone should be happier for having met me – unfortunately I have not always succeeded.

Although many people appear to try and hide the from the fact, we are a world in crisis and we need to fix the fundamental problems with the Earth that threaten, not just our societies and our civilisations, but the ability of our planet to support the abundant and diverse life that in the past has so often been taken for granted. We need new leaders who take responsibility and change good intentions into positive actions.

In the Buddhist tradition, the world we live in is the consequence of the Karma of everyone who has ever lived. The world we create for our children and their children is therefore the consequence of our own Karma. The way in which we each live our lives has a direct impact on the future. As the priest and poet John Donne succinctly put it: “No man is an island.”  We cannot and should not hide from the consequences of our actions; rather we should be positive that our actions secure a better future for ourselves and subsequent generations.

In the process of writing this book I have met or corresponded with many people who have challenged what I say and have been introduced to other works by other authors[2] from other traditions who, I believe, agree with the central precepts of the book, although expressed in different terms.

Over the last few decades the relationship between man and the earth has changed. In the early 20th Century it was deemed proper in Western societies that man should have dominion over the Earth and its resources – after all it was written in the Christian Bible[3] and Jewish Torah. Resources were perceived as limitless and there to serve the march of progress. Visionaries of science (and science fiction) have often viewed the resources of other planets as existing specifically for exploitation, as man spreads his way destructive across our galaxy.

However, scientists, industrialists and financiers, who have built and continue to build the wonders of our modern world, have learnt that rampant exploitation of materials and people to build empires of industry and to fuel consumerism is not a formula to guarantee a safe future for our children and their children to come. Whilst consumerism may produce an “easier” life for those who can afford to enjoy it, it does not necessarily produce a satisfactory meaningful life and the gap between the richest and the poorest in the world grows ever wider. Life is about more than having an excessive amount of food and the latest electronic gadgets.

Our goal should be sustainability and balance and, learning from our mistakes, to rebuild the diversity of the world we inhabit. The ancient Egyptians had a concept of living in harmony that they called Ma’at[4] which was the presence of truth, order, balance and justice in the world. I believe that after a century or more of world conflicts and unrestricted exploitation, the concept of bringing Ma’at back into the world through the deeds we undertake in our own lives is a valuable one which can make a real difference.

There is a fashion amongst self-help gurus to talk about the “Law of Abundance”, but there is a dichotomy between this law, where riches can be heaped upon those who desire them (without any apparent consideration of the consequences) and the need for everyone to achieve success. We live in world where there is an ever increasing gulf between the richest and the poorest. In the Western world becoming rich is an ambition instilled in us in our education and in the media. I would be a hypocrite to suggest that having wealth is in some way evil, but would strongly support the idea that, following the concept of Ma’at, we should consciously place our ambition for abundance within the bounds of balance. That is to say, in our ever more crowded world where there are increasing demands on resources, we need to look at both how we can achieve sufficient abundance for all and examine what is meant by abundance in the first place. Fundamental to this is a belief that we should not be selfish and greedy focusing only on our own desires, but to look at our own process of wealth creation as part of the solution for creating wealth for all.

Material wealth often brings power, but there is no point in having wealth and power if it is just to serve our own ego. Wealth should be spent so others benefit from it, not hoarded, for that is miserly. Money for money’s sake is pointless. Power should be used to serve others, not ourselves, as happiness in its many forms is not achieved through the domination of others, or the creation of unhappiness in others. Equally, except for those who follow aesthetic traditions to find spiritual enlightenment, or who have found Ma’at through a different life tradition, poverty is of no benefit to an individual or the society they find themselves in.

That is not to decry people, such as the few remaining hunter gatherers, nomads and those who value alternative lifestyles and to whom money and possessions are meaningless. These people find wealth and abundance in a different way. We can learn much from people who live in harmony with the world around them – who take no more than they need, who intimately know the value of each plant and animal in the environment in which they live. This type of harmony is one which, because of our arrogance and ignorance, the privileged in 19th and 20th Century western societies often sought to destroy.

It is impractical and would be meaningless to advocate that our vast populations and varied cultures could return to a hunter gatherer a way of life – mankind has evolved. However, it is only recently that the value of so much ancient knowledge and culture has been appreciated – an appreciation that has been far too late to save much of it.  The value of diversity over homogeneity is being shown to be important not only in the way we live as societies, but also in our agriculture where monoculture threatens the very sustainability of our ecosystems.

Real wealth is measured in happiness, not in possessions. Happiness does not come from glitz and glamour, but from love and appreciation.

Things are changing, we have the success of the Fairtrade Foundation and similar bodies and various other non-governmental organisations trying to make life better and fairer for those who have been exploited for decades and build a better life for all.

Those who would seek to guide the world forward need to master themselves and come to an understanding of the true nature of themselves, of mankind and our relationship with the universe. We are in need of a new generation of great thinkers with new ideologies to create a better world – every individual has the potential to lead the stage of humanity’s evolution.

 


[1] Spider, Angry Birds, Tetris . . . . fill in the blanks!

[2] Late in the process I came across physicist Tom Campbell’s Theory of Everything “My Big TOE” with which this book has many synergies.

[3] Genesis: 1:26-30

[4]  Maat or ma’at (thought to have been pronounced *[muʔ.ʕat]), also spelled māt or mayet, was the ancient Egyptian concept of truth, balance, order, law, morality, and justice. Ma’at was personified as a goddess regulating the stars, seasons, and the actions of both mortals and the deities, who set the order of the universe from chaos at the moment of creation. Estimated to be 2,000 years older the Forty-two Declarations of Purity of Ma’at are a group of precepts that codified ethical behaviour and are the source of the Judeo-Christian “Ten” Commandments.

Infinity

Less than Infinite

Many equations in physics and cosmology use Infinity, one example is the singularity in the description of black holes. Another is the number of digits in a constant like pi (Π) appears to be limitless. However, what would be the effect of our understanding of the cosmos if, instead of infinity we could use a very large number?

Some scientists are challenging the use of Infinity complaining it can blow up the equations with which physicists attempt to explain nature’s fundamentals, and prevent making predictions. Determining an actual value and redoing the maths may mean that where physics currently breaks down, a new understanding of the universe may emerge.

We live in exciting times!

Two young monks

Why believe in spirituality?

Like many children (about 15% according to Professor of Psychology Dr Susan Blackmore in her 1996 paper “On the Edge of Reality”), I had out of body experiences (O.B.E or Astral Travelling), some I still remember – including floating above my bunk on the Inverness to London sleeper in the summer of 1973 and being concerned about what my fellow traveller might think if he saw me! Such experiences often have a formative effect upon the development of a belief system.  For many, the experiences of childhood are forgotten, or the early experiences are suppressed by the need to conform to a world that is sceptical of their reality.

Indeed, until a recent reminder from a young friend, I had forgotten about the importance of Astral Travelling in the development of my own belief system – and also what fun can be had in roving the universe whilst the body lies comfortably at home in bed. There have been so many other things to think about and very few people to whom one can relate such tales without fear of mockery or rebuke.

However, one of the core platforms for my beliefs are the experiences of the alternative reality – a spirit world – that exists in parallel to the physical world. An alternative reality that is more colourful, more exciting and more real, in some ways, than the speed of light limited world of the everyday.

Belief in the existence of the astral realm does not imply the need for a particular religious belief – in fact the Roman Catholic Church in which I was brought up would condemn my belief in such a things – work of Old Nick and all that.  But I have moved way beyond the strictures and illogical dogmas in all their forms.  Like the Dalai Lama, I have a belief system that believes in science and logic and reconciling science and logic with spirituality is an essential part of my life.

Approach to Iona

Such Love

Thoughts from the Isle of Iona.

Such love as we give is love reflected upon us by the creator. Do not chase such love, but be a giver without expectations and the unexpected will flow in abundance upon you.

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