In the world of Thought, there is constant change. Thought forms are born, swell into importance, leave stains on the fabric of reality owing to the passions fueling them, and subside, becoming whispers on the winds that blow continually through the mental worlds of the astral plane. Nobody asks, “What is the purpose of thoughts?” Thoughts come and go, arise and subside, give birth to other thoughts or to suspension thereof; Thought just is. Why, then, when speaking of life in physical reality, do individuals seek obsessively for the purpose of such life? Is it not enough that Life simply is; that seasons, like thought-forms, come and go; that love, death, birth, marriage, sickness, recovery, travel, fellowship, and creative endeavours simply arise and fall like waves of the ocean.
“Why am I here?” is one of Humanity’s great agonized cries. Yet as we see it from the Plane of Light and Sound, asking, “What is my life purpose?” is as meaningless as “What is the purpose of the color blue?” Blue just is, that is all; life just is. That is to say, life is intrinsically valuable. It does not need a purpose, goal, or achievement to give it meaning and worth.
Mister Rand’s father was a world famous novelist at one point in human history. It is not what he set out to become, and he is virtually forgotten in America today. As we see things, what is important is not whether Mister Rand’s father had a great effect on human history, although in fact his work continues to resonate throughout the subgenre of literary entertainments known as crime fiction; but whether Mister Rand’s father enjoyed the experience. For it is the experience of hardness, softness, cold, heat, excitement, ennui, hate, love, redness, purpleness, travel, imprisonment that gives life its meaning and purpose.
By this thinking, therefore, there can be no such thing as failure. Mister Rand has frequently felt like a failure because he has not succeeded in becoming a famous writer like his father (he gives us permission to write this here, though he is not particularly happy about our having done so). But that very internal experience of self-disappointment, self-comparison, and self-appraisal is intrinsically valuable, because experience is growth, and growth is what all life seeks to embrace, whether in physical reality, thought reality, the physical planning state, the dream state, the nonphysical planning state, the plane of light and sound, the plane of the greater self, or the plane of the One.
“Why should the experience of growth be more valuable to the One,” asks Mister Rand, “than the experience of non-growth?” He asks this in order to make trouble for us <laughter>. All we can reply is, “Because it is.”
A good friend gave me an intriguing Christmas present today, a book entitled, The Improbability Principle: Why Coincidences, Miracles, and Rare Events Happen Every Day. The author is David J. Hand, emeritus professor of mathematics and a senior research investigator at Imperial College London. His book aims to explain, via statistics, how the uncertainty that lies at the core of Nature gives rise to statistically mappable, wildly improbable, seemingly miraculous events. “The universe has laws which describe the way it works,” writes Hand, “… The same applies to exceedingly unlikely events. The Improbability Principle is my name for a set of laws of chance which, together, tell us that we should expect the unexpected, and why.” Some seeming improbabilities arise, Hand says, from “fundamental aspects of the way the universe is constructed;” others, from “deep properties of what we mean by probability;” still others, from the mechanism of the human brain as it expresses itself in human psychology. Events that we deem improbable, says Hand, only seem so because of errors in our research or thinking; once those errors are corrected, the improbable is revealed as probable.
Probability interests me, because as a psychic, I’m in the business of sussing out the probable for clients. A client comes to me and asks me what her chances are of finding a loving partner through (let’s say) Match.com. I throw the cards and they say, “Success!”, or “NO way,” or “Um, it might work, but…” If you stop the reading there, you leave the client more or less a victim of fate. But if you ask, “Why is success predicted here?”, or, “Why is this absolutely the wrong approach for her?”, or, “What can she do to maximize her chances of making this work?”, then you get information the client can really learn from and use to make decisions that will load the deck in her favor.
I am severely challenged mathematically, so I cannot and probably never will be able to give you a fair assessment of his research, thinking, or worldview. From a cursory flip through the material, however, it seems clear that, as a statistician, he is convinced that everything has an explanation consonant with mathematics and impersonal physical law. In other words, from Hand’s viewpoint, the fact that you happened to get a client who paid you by PayPal the very day you had run out of money for food was not the result of a supernatural entity answering your previous evening’s pleas for cash, it was the logical outcome of a complex series of events, some of which you had a conscious part in (such as having sent out a Thanksgiving card to all your clients wishing them a good year ahead), some of which had to do with the time of year (post-Christmas letdown), some of which had to do with that client’s choices and circumstances (end of year stimulates desires for a new start), and some of which were entirely accidental. According to this view, then, your getting paid right when you needed it most was not therefore necessarily evidence that a loving Higher Power exists who responds to your pragmatic needs when asked, but only that, sooner or later, given your many years in the psychic business and your wide reputation, it was inevitable that some client would have called you at some point after Christmas, and it just happened to be on the day you needed the moolah. So this would make my attributing these events to a loving Higher Power not the result of faith rewarded or intuition triumphant, but fantasy thinking arising from my very human need to imagine an Invisible Sky Daddy who will take care of me when I am in trouble.
On the other hand, one of the Major Trumps of the Tarot deck is The Fool, which in my experience represents serendipity—chance—as one of the faces of God; that is, chance as one of the ways Divine Love expresses itself in spacetime. The laws of probability and improbability are built into the mechanism of spacetime by the great consciousness of All-That-Is, Who exists both within and outside of spacetime simultaneously (since spacetime is an expression of Itself). So everything about me—when I was born, the family into which I was born, the troubles that led me to get involved in psychic work, the clients I’ve attracted, my difficulty saving money, my making myself available to Spirit, my asking for some cash, the souls I connect with as clients, what happens next week, what happens when I die—while not predetermined, can nonetheless be seen outside of time by the Divine as a complete, fully faceted, jewel of event and experience bound together as the artwork that is me, in this life, this time around.
Or maybe not. •
(The Improbability Principle: Why Coincidences, Miracles, and Rare Events Happen Every Day. New York: Scientific American/Farrar, Straus and Giroux, copyright 2014 by David J. Hand; paperback, 269 pages, $17.50; ISBN 978-0-374-53500-1)
Mister Rand has asked us to speak to him and you concerning the matter of prayer; i.e., asking Higher Power, or God, or Goddess, or the Universe, or the Greater Self, or the Buddha, or Invisible Sky Friend, to intervene in physical reality in order to bring the one who prays a desired outcome. The issue is more complicated than perhaps it first appears, not because prayer is complicated, but because the reality that permits prayer to be answered takes some explaining.
We can assert with confidence, based upon the experience of our incarnated selves and the selves of others, that when certain inner and outer circumstances are met, requests for divine intervention inhuman affairs are frequently answered. And the answers, as certain 12th Step Program literature reminds us, can be (1) yes; (2) no; or (3) not yet. Of course, the latter two answers are not the ones desirous to he or she who prays unless he or she who prays has the confidence that their Higher Power is unconditionally loving and supremely wise. Then “not yet” or “no” can be perceived as what they are, which is to say blessings in disguise.
How often has Mister Rand wished sincerely for something and that something has not materialized no matter how hard he has worked for it? Critics often jump to the conclusion, “You have not had your prayer answered because you do not have enough faith;” or, “You have not had your prayer answered because you are not praying to the correct deity;” or, “You have not had your prayer answered because you have not put in the necessary effort to do your part;” or, “You have not had your prayer answered because you have sinned in this life or a past life and your suffering is the result of that sin.” And although in some cases, perhaps, these objections might have some small merit, in most cases we observe that the reasons sincere prayers are not answered immediately is a combination of factors, chief of which very often is, “The time is not yet right for the experience you are praying for to download from the Dream State into physical reality.”
What, Mister Rand asks, are the optimal conditions for a desired experience to manifest as the result of sincere prayers? We see them as sevenfold:
(1) There must be room in your life for the experience you are requesting. That is, you must be entirely ready to enjoy this path you have chosen. This sounds obvious, but the human heart has many chambers, and in some of those chambers, fear and shame rule. For Mister Rand, it is fear that if something good happens to him, something bad will happen as a way of God punishing him or physical reality exerting itself to bring his good fortune back to a state of nonrealization. For everything is connected. There is also shame: Mister Rand is frequently ashamed that he enjoys so much prosperity compared to the nations of the world. So adding more prosperity to that which he has already seems to him unjust.
(2) There must be sufficient time allotted for the experience to manifest. Another factor that can clutter the space to be occupied by the desired experience is the factor of time. Physical reality is to all intents and purposes linear, that is, it progresses slowly and methodically from one choice to another to ‘final’ outcome. At 64 Mister Rand might wish to be a millionaire stage actor, but most persons do not become millionaires overnight, and success in theater often takes years to develop. In other words, Mister Rand’s wish to be a millionaire stage actor might have been appropriate to pray for when he was in his 30s rather than now, when he is in his 60s.
(3) There must be trust in a Power greater than oneself, and a willingness to turn the results of one’s prayer over to that benevolent Power. It is often said in Mister Rand’s twelve-step group that God answers prayers one of three ways: “yes,” “no, I have something better in mind for you,” or “not yet.” Many individuals assume, when their prayers are not answered, that God is angry with them, or that God does not exist. These conclusions do not take into account the limitations of human understanding of the vast intricate network of potentialities that makes up the web of coincidence and meaning humans call spacetime or physical reality. If one desires the assistance of one’s God—whether one sees that God as a master, parent, consoler-protector, transcendent consciousness, or mythic symbol of the internal creative power of the person praying—then one must be willing to relinquish control of the prayer’s outcome to that God, confident that in time understanding of the desired manifestation or nonmanifestation will come if one is patient. And one of the major things one must trust is that if one’s God says, “No, I have something better in mind for you,” that it is the truth. For often Mister Rand wants something that he thinks will give him a certain experience, but his Higher Power knows that it will not. If Rand trusts that Higher Power, he can ask, “If something else will give me the experience I desire, please show me.”
(4) One must pray for what one truly wants, not what one thinks one deserves or can get. And one must be willing to face, listen to, and soften around any intrusive fears, shame, anger, envy, and catastrophic thinking that may come up when one asks for what one truly wants. As Mister Rand has learned to say, one does not have to be better or worse than anyone else in order to deserve the same amount of care, kindness, health, love, and safety as anyone else.
(5) One must persist in one’s prayers. Mister Rand informs his clients that in the Greek of the New Testament, the quote attributed to Jesus that in English begins, “Ask and ye shall receive” is more literally translated “Ask and keep on asking and ye shall receive.”
(6) One must take responsibility for being a co-creator with God of the experience one desires. In other words, one will enjoy faster and truer and surer results if one prays, “Higher Power, please show me today what step today to take, the step that will get me one step closer to my goal.” Some may say, “This is blasphemy, to treat God as an equal.” We say, God does not have low self-esteem. God does not need praise. God does not need worship. God does not need sacrifices. These are all human needs projected onto God. God is Love in all parts of God’s self, and thinks nothing of God’s self, but only of God’s creation, and how God can wean it back into God’s loving embrace.
(7) Consider this truth: that only in spacetime can there be the illusion that one is imperfect, incomplete, vulnerable to diminishment, and able to suffer loss. In the great Light reaches, where the core of each entity dwells (including you), there is full awareness that one is completely filled to the brim with Love, and that Love cannot be diminished or removed by enemy, plague, misfortune, or time. When Mister Rand had his vision of the Plane of Superimplicate Order in fall of 2013, he experienced it as a calm, quiet, still place of pure consciousness that felt entirely familiar. And that is because he had briefly awakened from the dream of spacetime to reconnect with the wonderful fact that in the end, no matter what happens to the body or waking mind, one is and will always be safe. •
For those of us whose mothers physically, emotionally, and/or sexually abused us—whether overtly or covertly—Mother’s Day can be a joyless experience. So I prefer to think of Mother’s Day as a holy day dedicated to recognition of the nurturing face of the Divine in all its manifestations.
Years ago, when i was visiting the shrine at El Santuario de Chimayo, I wandered into the back of the shrine, where a large metal fenced in area was hung with thousands of pieces of paper bearing the photos and/or prayers for relatives of pilgrims. The statue of La Conquistadora in the chapel had depressed me, as war goddesses always do, and I was feeling low in general because of the condemnatory homophobia of the church hierarchy.
As I stood there, my forehead pressed against the fence, I noticed that a stream ran by the place where I was standing. All at once I received a very strong impression of a female energy saying to me, “Don’t listen to those old men on the hill. From my womb you came, to my womb you shall return. You have a right to be here.”
Another time the Great Mother appeared to me was in a dream. I dreamed that I was standing in a kitchen facing a screen door opening to the outside world. On the other side of the screen were a group of wild animals, led by a giant sow, all gazing at me. When I looked into the sow’s eyes the message came to me, “Please don’t forget us.”
I am firmly convinced that environmental abuse—industrial pollution and despoiling of habitats—threatens ourselves and many other species with extinction. Often such abuse arises from Force and Threat based thinking on the part of corporate heads, who believe that anybody strong enough to take what he wants deserves to enjoy the spoils of victory no matter who else or what else it harms. Sometimes such abuse appears to arise from the trauma of growing up poor in rural areas where only the hardest physical labor results in bare subsistence living; in such cases, it is easy to view the Earth as an enemy and animals as either potential foodstuffs to be harvested or rivals for dwindling resources. Sometimes such abuses arise from the blinders which a privileged urban upbringing often places upon the wealthy; to such persons, “real life” is the concrete and glass of the city, and rural life is a kind of theme park rather than the source of all air, water, and food essential to human life. And sometimes, environmental abuse may serve as a “safety valve” for intense personal anger over abuses suffered in childhood.
I grew up in the New England countryside. I spent hours as a boy wandering our woods. I seldom encountered any animals or heard any birds, the latter because (he confessed to me years later) my severely abused older brother—who demonstrated in other contexts a marked sensitivity towards and caring for animals—had a habit of shooting and killing as many birds as he could find. “It was either that,” he told me, “or shoot Mom and Dad.” (A decorated Viet Nam conflict veteran and lifelong alcoholic now in sobriety over 18 years, my brother has set aside his once-hoarded firearms, recognizing that possessing them did not actually make him safer and stronger. So healing is possible, and I honor him for embracing it one day at a time.)
Anti-pollution and environmental exploitation activism is crucial if we are to rescue the Earth, its animals, and ourselves from Force and Threat consciousness run riot. But while we address corporate malfeasance, let’s not forget that corporations are run by individuals, and that a successful environmental protection campaign must also seek to re-educate the individuals responsible for voting in corporate practices that are harming life on Earth. Identifying and reaching such people can be very difficult, as they frequently view anonymity and freedom from personal accountability (“It’s nothing personal; it’s just business”) as some of the privileges enjoyed by the ruling class. But we must persist in showing these people that there is no such thing as an impersonal business decision where the health of the Earth and its creatures is concerned. •
When individuals expand their presence into Physical Reality from the Dream State, they have several options from which to choose in determining how they are to create experience here. We call these options Walkers, Talkers, and Watchers.
Walkers are those who come into Physical Reality for a specific focused purpose: to contribute in some way to the overall balance, progress, or limiting of human, animal, or mineral life here. Walkers often live for a designated period of time in order to accomplish the focused task or enjoy/suffer the specifically desired experience, then leave Physical Reality when this task is done. Examples of Walkers are the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., Lee Harvey Oswald, Pope Francis I, President Barack Obama, Marie Curie, Amy Goodman, Mother Theresa, Bill Gates.
Talkers are those who come into Physical Reality to create private personal experiences for themselves primarily. These are individuals who are seeking to balance their total incarnational experience or expand it into new areas which they have not yet enjoyed. Talkers are not “less spiritual” than Walkers; their focus is simply different. Examples of Talkers are difficult to come by because by definition Talkers do not usually figure on the public or world stage. One example of a Talker whose private experience includes celebrity is performer Lindsay Lohan.
Watchers are individuals who enter Physical Reality primarily to observe the experiences here and share their observations with the Divine Love that gives rise to, permeates, and supports all realities. Watchers are often solitaries, invisible to most people, shunning the limelight. They contribute to the overall balance of All-That-Is through their careful noticing of the things people do in Physical Reality. They may end up as older individuals puzzled by their lack of spectacular success or spectacular failure, or they may simply be considered by others to be unmotivated. However, most of the time they possess a quiet capacity for empathy and insight that Walkers and Talkers may not possess.
If you are a Walker, ask yourself, “How do I want most to serve the world?” If you are a Talker, ask yourself, “How do I want most to serve myself?” If you are a Watcher, ask yourself, “What arouses my curiosity the most right now?”
Remember that whether one is a Walker, Talker, or Watcher, the level of consciousness upon which one primarily resides while going through the joys and hardships Physical Reality affords very much affects how others perceive you and how you enjoy or loathe the world around you. For one can contribute to the world’s harmony by doing good, doing evil, or doing nothing in particular at all. Everything depends upon what, deep down, gives you the most sense of integrity, peace, happiness, pleasure, or intensity. A Walker operating on the consciousness level of To Force may have been called into Physical Reality by the mass consciousness to play a violent role in history. A Talker operating on the consciousness level of To Force may end up as a spouse, child, or animal abuser. A Watcher operating on the consciousness level of To Force may spend years thinking ill of or castigating herself for not accomplishing more in the world, not having enough ambition. Such a Watcher may end up being victimized (from the human viewpoint), but she does not become a victim primarily for the sake of her private incarnational experience. She does it primarily for the sake of the One Whose passion for understanding Itself drives and motivates all tangible creation.
Are you a Walker, a Talker, or a Watcher? Perhaps it is not important to know; or, as Mister Rand feels, perhaps labeling oneself in these ways limits freedom of expression and flexibility of self-assessment. For in the end, all Walkers, however committed to responding to the mass consciousness’s call to affect society at large, also along the way have experiences that benefit themselves alone; all Talkers, however absorbed in private experiences, also have an effect on the experiences of those around them; and all Watchers, however sidelined apparently by life, also create experiences to enjoy privately along the way of their observing. So do not judge yourself. Walkers are not spiritually superior to Talkers; Watchers are not spiritually superior to Walkers. “Inferior” and “superior” are not terms the Greater Self understands.
Welcome to the New Year! I thought I’d run by you my first-ever poll on which topics you’d like to see explored on this blog during the next year. Vote for as many as you like! There’s even a space at the end for you to suggest a topic not covered above. When you’re done, just click on the VOTE button on the bottom right of the poll. Here goes….
Get a job. If you can’t find one, make one up and go for it. If you can’t do this, volunteer. Volunteering often leads to paid jobs.
Workyour butt off. That is, throw yourself completely and enthusiastically into whatever you are doing.
Rest frequently. Even a 5 minute eyes-closed phone-turned-off door-locked DO NOT DISTURB rest can refresh and heal you like nobody’s business.
Cultivate your friendships. Gardens and friendships both require feeding, watering, weeding, and (occasionally) hard pruning in order to stay healthy.
Don’t blame others for your mistakes. On the other hand, don’t blame yourself for your mistakes, either. Simply accept that you are human, and have made a mistake, and resolve to learn from it so your pain is not repeated.
Notice, and release, “us-them” thinking wherever possible.
Don’t despair. It’s the nature of reality to change frequently, and there are no last chances for happiness even on your deathbed.
Cultivate gratitude. However resentfully and reluctantly, make a conscious daily effort to notice at least one blessing in your life.
Make a sincere effort, then release the need to control the results.
Ask for what you really want, not what you think you can get.
Make the most of the opportunities you have instead of wasting energy wishing you had better ones.
Keep looking for better ones.
Don’t lie, even when they do.
Don’t sign anything you don’t understand. Don’t be ashamed to ask for explanations.
Try to do as good a job in the small things as you do in the large.
Don’t criticize others behind their backs. If you can’t find something good to say, hum.
If in doubt about what decision to make, consider putting off the decision for 3 minutes, 3 hours, 3 days, 3 weeks, 3 months, or 3 years. By that time either the situation will have resolved itself, another opportunity will have arisen, or you will have been shown what to do.
Keep your numbers. That is, keep track of how much money you earn and how much money you spend from day to day, so that at the end of the month you have a better idea of your spending patterns, and how to revise your budget in light of those patterns.
Encourage the young, but don’t preach to them.
When you make a mistake, ask, “What can I do differently next time?” The only failures are those who refuse to learn from failure.
Exercise, however feebly. It soothes depression and sharpens the mind.
Drink lots of water.
Don’t say “Yes” when you want to say “No”, and vice versa.
Ask for help. Keep on asking as many sources as you can until you get that help you need.
Don’t waste time worrying about your enemies. Divine Love and Truth will handle them if you let It, either by turning them into your friends or making their influence on your life irrelevant.
Respect good teachers,but eschew guru-worship. No teacher or authority figure embodies Divine Love and Truth perfectly or completely.
Relax. Tense muscles bruise easily, and so do tense minds and hearts.