Monday, August 24, 2015

Rod Sterling, Alfred Hitchock, Jesus and Quantum Physics

One of my favorite shows growing up was the Twilight Zone. Far beyond simple entertainment value, it prompted me to imagine the unseen and unfathomable possibilities. It set the stage for my favorite pastime of exploring endless possibilities for "reality" and consciousness. When I discovered that these and Alfred Hitchcock Presents episodes were readily available for viewing on line, I spent endless winter nights watching one after another. It was pure Nirvana!!!
Rod Sterling and Alfred Hitchcock were more than great story tellers. They knew something. And if you watched, you know it too. There really is something more. If, since then, you have dismissed their "something more" as just good story telling - come back. Watch the episodes again. There is something more!
Now science is beginning to scratch the surface in explaining exactly why the kinds of stories they told are more than just entertaining stories. It is science and scientifically proven - that we - our thoughts and observations - create! We create the reality around us. We create.
Jesus knew this. Jesus taught this. It is quantum physics. Jesus understood it and used it.
You need wine. Turn water into wine. He did it.
You want to see. Listen to me. You see.
We have forty loaves and fishes. Feed them all. They are filled to overflowing.
Of course I can walk on water. You can too. Follow.
Be healed. Rise from the dead... It is all here and possible.
Jesus was a quantum physicist! He demonstrated it all.
So, why did his true work not continue?
His genius, like the genius of many, was not truly understood at the time. It is not understood now.
He was teaching us to feed, to heal and to transcend even death. That is powerful stuff. And powerful people don't want to loose power.
But it's still powerful stuff and if we can stop being overpowered by the fright of the mysticism of it. We can get to it. It's quantum physics. It's not lost. Rod Sterling and Alfred Hitchcock kind of ushered the way for us to try to understand it. I think Jesus is smiling about that.

Monday, August 17, 2015

The Bully Appeal

How do loud, obnoxious, mean spirited people gain a following? I've wondered about this since watching the playground bully in elementary school. There is a certain level of appeal and it transcends the playground into adulthood. The best evidence is how well Donald Trump is doing in his run for president and the successes of people like Rush Limbaugh and Howard Stern.
These three are not what I would consider good neighbor material. Most people would be very upset if their child's teacher talked and acted like any of these 3, and yet, they have a following that is significant. While we may wish to dismiss the phenomenon as crazy, most of us have friends and family that are enamored with these guys. And we live on the same planet.
So, I find myself looking back at the playground bully days. The bully always had a loyal pack of followers who wanted to appear as big and bad. Then there were the "neutrals" who tried to stay distant and uninvolved. The neutrals sometimes snickered with the bully and pack hoping they were not going to become targets. And then there were the targets that the bully and pack attacked while the neutrals stood back. The power of the bully depends upon neutrals. They are the largest number.
Inevitably, the bully and pack stepped on someone the neutrals could not avoid defending and the tables turned. Loud, obnoxious and mean spirited is not so funny when someone you care about is the target. Why is it EVER appealing?
It's appealing when we think it is a sign of strength. It seems a very basic caveman thing. If you fear a lion is about to attack, you want the strongest person to intervene. The best way to scare off a lion is to be loud, obnoxious and downright mean!
That explains the pack loyal to the bully. They really believe there is a lion about to attack. But what about the snickering neutrals? And the non-snickering neutrals at the other end of the spectrum closer to the targets? The snickering neutrals are probably a bit convinced of the lion threat. The non-snickering neutrals are probably a little more afraid of becoming the bully target.
One day - some day - on some planet - we will finally understand that bullies are not needed. Lions have no threat. Targets are not needed. And neutral is not possible.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Let Spirit Lead You

There are signs of a spiritual awakening. We see it as more people are growing sensitive to and aware of social injustices. But we also see it as oppressors grow more extreme and outrageous in attempts to stifle spiritual awakening.
Spiritual awakening is threatening to those who love power and institutional religious ritualized dogma. The spirit has no need of physical or emotional power. In spirit, we are free and at peace. Spirit is not tied to or separate from anything. As children, full of wonder, we know that. Then the world sets out to tell us otherwise.
We're taught to fear. We're taught to seek power and become conquerors and then to seek salvation from the savagery that we were carefully taught to revere. Inner woven are odd threads of blood and sacrifice, timed rituals, robotic chants, strangely tied to hope of spiritual enlightenment and salvation.
Salvation is not given to us, it is given through us. To be born again is to be spiritually wakened. It does not matter what order the candles are lit. No blood is required. What matters is for you to become a light. You are the candle. The light is passed to you and through you.
All the great spiritual teachers had the same message. Do no harm. And one great harm is to ignore social injustice. Their heart bled for those who were oppressed. They saw it. They spoke about it. They acted. Salvation flowed through them. Spirit flowed through them. The light flowed through them. It did not flow through them so that they must be sacrificed. That is not from the spirit. The world devours, not spirit. Spirit has no need for destruction. There in lies the deception.
It's no so complicated. No book is going to to unlock it. No ritual is going to unlock it. Just stop and listen. Hear and do. Let salvation flow to you and through you. It's not a physical thing that happens. It's a spiritual thing that takes over. Be reborn. Let spirit lead you. Nothing is lost or sacrificed. All is freely given.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Hope and faith keep us alive

There are days I am keenly aware of my shortcomings. And then there are other days "I'd admit my faults if I had any." I know in my heart that I mean well. I want to be understood. I want to understand.
It is that awareness of my shortcomings and the sincere belief that I mean no harm, that leads me to have faith that most other people are the same. And then there are other days when I'm certain I must be from some other planet because this one seems so at odds with what I believe.
I just can't stop believing - even if only the hope of another planet - that most people despite their shortcomings actually mean well.  Despite disappointments and what many might call evidence to the contrary, I keep believing. I refuse to be jaded. But then there are other days....
It's hope and faith that keep us alive. We have to believe in something more. We need to see something beyond because if no one has hope or faith or a vision of something better, there will be no better.
There have to be people driving toward something better. We all should be driving toward something better. Think of any major achievement in history - ANYTHING. It happened because someone pushed for something more - something better. They sought a cure, a better way to do something, or created something totally new and unheard of before. They sought to overcome injustice. They said the world was not flat, it was round. They said the earth was not the center of the universe, it was the sun. They defied convention and sought greater truth.
Most of us won't be remembered for some gallant contribution to humanity. But you could be the teacher of someone who will be. You might donate money that buys a tank of gas for someone to get to an interview and that person starts a career that leads to.... You might say or do something that gives a hopeless person hope. Can you remember someone like that?
We can be passive in this life. We have shortcomings. Others have shortcomings. I don't want to live a passive life. If I can leave anything as a legacy, let it be hope and faith that there is something more to be discovered in this world that is better.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Symbols such as flags....

Symbols are an important part of our culture and human history. Companies carefully create logos and build their "brand" around them. They want us to see that company symbol and associate it with their products and with their values. It's an identifier intended to create associations and companies spend a lot of time, effort and money to carefully develop those associations.
Symbols take on greater meaning as those associations grow. They're hoping it will be the associations holding the company in their light but sometimes our experience overrides their intended meaning. Think of any company logo - Ford, GM, Amazon, Facebook, Exxon - and consider the associations you have. Why? What has been your experience? Those associations may be based on personal experience, news stories, relayed information... Does seeing the logo give you a positive feeling or a negative feeling? Why?
Our symbols are steep in meaning. That's the intention. We don't all look at the same symbol and attached the same meaning. At the heart of the debate over the confederate flag, the argument seems to be over its meaning. Many embracing the flag argue that it is simply a symbol of southern pride. To view it this way, one has to disassociate the history and intended meanings as it first flew in the Civil War and when it was raised again in the 1960's.
The original meaning of the stars and bars confederate flag was succession from the United
States. It symbolized all the reasons behind the effort to succeed. At the end of the civil war, the stars and stripes flew again across the south and much effort was made to heal the wounds that separated this great nation. Confederate flags came down.
The confederate flag was raised again in the 1960's as a symbol of protest against de-segregation. In other words, it was a rallying cry to fight against the civil rights movement for equality. It is the flag embraced by the Ku Klux Klan.
That history and this meaning for this symbol remains. Its a symbol of succession, segregation, oppression, and subjugation. Rallying around that flag is dis-comforting in light of what it symbolizes. Does "southern pride" encompass a continued yearning for succession, segregation, oppression and subjugation? The stars and bars flag is not separate from those. The flag is just a flag. It's not the flag that is offensive. It's what that flag has represented that is offensive. The desire to keep that flag flying raises the question - Do you support all that the flag symbolizes? If so, it explains much about the underlying issues that aren't getting resolved.
Let southern pride raise a new flag that symbolizes hospitality, warm weather, warm hearts, great food, and visits on the porch with an ice cold mint julep.

Monday, July 6, 2015

I don't support "gay" marriage.

It struck me today that I do not want to say I support gay marriage. Why?
I believe straight people should be able to marry people of the opposite sex and have equal benefits that same sex couples have. They should have the same protections under the law. They should have the same property protections, the same tax benefits, the same health related benefits and protections.
I support marriage equality.
I support the individual right to determine with whom a person wishes to share their life, their property and their personal life decisions. I think the law should protect that decision and not require layers of legal paperwork to do that. And there should not be provisions in the tax code that favor one above the other.
So, what about non-discrimination laws?
Yes, I support those too. You should not be allowed to treat straight people with any less dignity than you would LGBT people. In fact, you just shouldn't be allowed to treat people badly on the basis of being straight, lesbian, gay, bi-sexual or transgender. Let's have a civilized society.
So, what about religious freedom.
Yes, I believe you should be able to go to whatever church you want. And to protect everyone's religious freedom, you cannot try to coerce anyone else into practicing what you believe in that church. If they don't go willingly with you to that church, you cannot use your business or your government as a weapon of coercion. You have to choose to be in business for the public or be in church. You are free to choose. That's your religious freedom.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

The Weddings I have supported.....

I've attended a lot of weddings in my 50 some years. Many years ago I was a bridesmaid in some. I've sung in some. I never thought about whether or not I believed in their marriage. It never occurred to me that I needed to decide whether or not I should scrutinize their relationship.
I respected their decision to marry the person they chose.  I cared enough about them, and thought they cared enough about me, that it was honor to share in their celebration. I supported them. That's what we do for people we love.
Should I have questioned their choices? Did they choose correctly? How can I decide that? Even now having watched outcomes - How can I decide? Did the successes or failures in those marriages change society forever? I don't know. Maybe it did. If I believe it did, would I go back and change my support?
I can safely say I would not. Even if love is fleeting, love is powerful. Everything done in the spirit of love will yield positive results. It may be just a seed. That seed may sit dormant for many years before it grows. It may seem to fade away but love never dies. I will not presume to know where it will go and where or when it will grow. And I will always celebrate the hope of it. I will support the hope of it. And I will support and honor those that I love who are sharing the hope and promise of more love, honor and support. We all need a lot more of those things.