The SUM of Our Stories

We are the SUM of our stories.

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The world around us becomes the result of what we tell ourselves is happening.

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We interpret our lives and the doings we experience within the confines of our beliefs. And we make what we see and feel adhere to those beliefs.

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From our first attempts at understanding all of life and our relationship to it, we created tales—myths—origins for ourselves within the context of what we saw and felt and intuited about our situations.

This chart—“The Evolutionary Tree of Religion” is fascinating to study and contemplate—at least fascinating to those of us who find it as such.

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If you can’t quite make out the details, I broke it into 3 parts, but if you need a closer look, go to the Facebook address listed for HumanOdyssey.

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The River of Feelings

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“There is a river of feelings within us, and every drop of water in that river is a feeling. To observe our feelings, we sit on the bank of the river and identify each feeling as it flows by. It may be pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral. One feeling lasts for a while, and then another comes. Meditation is to be aware of each feeling. Recognize it, smile to it, look deeply into it, and embrace it with all our heart. If we continue to look deeply, we discover the true nature of that feeling, and we are no longer afraid, even of a painful feeling. We know we are more than our feelings, and we are able to embrace each feeling and take good care of it.”

– Thich Nhat Hanh
Photo: © Yvonne D. Williams

For some reason this Thich Nhat Hanh quote stuck in my head when I read it because I know what he is referring to—I’ve felt it myself—the stepping out of intense feeling, no matter how painful it may be, and simply watching it flow over us as we remain sitting on the bank in silence before the enormity of the water passing through on its journey elsewhere.

If you aren’t sitting a part from it on the bank, that “River of Feelings” is a flow we continually ride—sometimes in a kayak gliding above the water and sometimes in an inner-tube with half our body immersed into it.kayakriverswirl67.jpg

So for us to say that we do not “feel” something emotionally is to say that we are riding the kayak as we skim the waves while still feeling the froth of turbulence. We may bob around a bit with emotion, but we’ve elevated our heads above the water and as long as we remain upright, we know that we won’t drown.

Inversely, when we are immersed in the feeling, we become the feeling and may struggle for our lives; clinging tightly to our inner-tube to keep our heads above water—for fear it drowns us with wave after wave of intense, gut-clenching emotion.

tube on river67Grief is an inner-tube type feeling. So is rage. It’s easy to be swamped when you immerse yourself in those feelings.

Some would say depression is such a feeling, but I believe that depression isn’t really a feeling as much as it is the result of losing the inner-tube completely and accumulating body fatigue from continually treading water without relief in sight.

So what is the difference between riding the kayak and sitting on the bank?

The kayak provides an experiential option for riding the feelings we naturally have during the course of our lives. It gives us buoyancy and distance from the worst of the emotional waves sloshing about us.

The bank is an entirely different perspective on emotional impaction. From the bank you do not participate in the feeling, you only observe it as it comes and goes, and try not to judge its rightness or wrongness; its power or onriverbank45.jpgaffectation on you.  You acknowledge it as it impacts you and note what is being felt, but you let it go—you let it move on and away without clinging to it—without wallowing in it or calling it back to re-experience, over and over.

It’s not easy sitting on the bank and observing your own river of feelings; and sometimes it’s hard to even find a kayak from which to navigate the powerful river of emotions that we feel.  At times when life takes a tumultuous turn for us, we feel fortunate enough to simply have that inner-tube to help keep our heads above the overwhelming waves.

What I think Thick Nhat Hanh was saying in this quote is that observing from the bank (meditation) is the far safer option for dealing with intense feelings, because it allows the greatest perspective on the river of emotion itself that we must experience over the course of our lives.

As humans, we will have good days and bad ones—people will come to us and then leave us through disagreements, grievances or death.

During the course of our lives, we make efforts to achieve or acquire what we do not have, and those efforts are sometimes successful and sometimes not.

We love and we lose love.

We agree and disagree with others, and feel both great joy and great fear at many aspects of life, including our own mortality.

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But during the course of our lives, that river of feelings flows on and on, over familiar ground or new ground—but it keeps moving onward until we individually feel no more and merge again with the Great Ocean of Consciousness that logs “all feelings” as simply a part of the living experience.

So keep your inner-tube always handy, and find a kayak when you can do so to keep your head higher above the waves; but if possible, try instead the view from the bank for its safer, broader perspective, and simply allow that emotional river to flow on by without judgment or clinging.

I know—easier said than done—but it IS possible to do it. Trust me on this one.

 

The Quest for What We Lack: Part Two—Family Reunions

reunion-cartoon.jpgTis the season for family reunions and family gatherings in general, involving picnics and potlucks and people you seldom see all gathered together playing nice (sort of) for a few hours.

It’s a time to clamp your jaw shut and hold your clever comebacks at the rude, intrusive, in-your-face questions—a time to curb your overwhelming desire to tell off the perpetually-mouthy aunt or the ever-drunken uncle (or role-play vice-versa)—a time to not snap at the obnoxious kids in your face all vying for attention and exuding their excessive “look at me-ness”—a time for staring with slack-jawed disbelief at all those people gathered together in this park to whom you are supposedly related and your saying aloud to yourself, “Uh-uh….NOPE…..that’s not in my genes—NO way—NO how!”minioncircus.jpg

But you know that they really are.

And these are the better thoughts you’re having at that yearly, quality “family-gathering time.”

The worse thoughts throbbing at your temples during the group get-togethers are the “family secret” thoughts that make you watch Uncle Sonny or Uncle Dicky as closely as possible, especially when little ones are near him—watch for the tell-tale enticement tricks he may have once used on you or your siblings—the “Come over here, little Suzy. Come and sit on Uncle Sonny’s lap.”  Or the little tickle games, he used to play. Or the little grabs he made when others weren’t watching and you were too unclebadtouch.jpgshocked or scared to say “Don’t do that!”—the little secrets he told you to keep just between you and him—and “Oh, here’s a shiny, silver dollar just for you if you don’t say anything to your mommy about us.”

Oh yes.  I know about Uncle Sonny and Uncle Dicky, both personally and in the late-night tales from female-adolescent slumber parties—I’ve heard the warnings not to be alone with such-and-such—to ignore such-and-such’s enticements or “games”—to watch at the next gathering for how Uncle Dicky avoids certain older adolescent family members that he once used to excessively dote on.  Yes, Uncle Dicky is a family secret—except he’s not really a secret. Nor should his behavior ever be one.

Yes, these folks, no matter how questionable some might be, are all a part of our genetic pool. Perhaps some families have a few more perversion-inclined members than others, but all families have at least one or two of them, just as all families have members who are openly addicted to drugs, alcohol, and porn.  These aren’t things that you should ignore and pretend aren’t affecting others, because they definitely do affect them—especially the vulnerable, young ones.

I’ll honestly admit that I’ve always hated family mazine not coming.jpggatherings—both with my own family and my long-time friend’s family.  The ones I’ve personally participated in, especially from childhood, were cringe-worthy for me and felt downright alien. Not only did I NOT feel like a part of that group—I wasn’t sure I ever wanted to be considered a part of them.  So I have a hard time relating to the positive experience of family reunions that others crow about.

After seeing a few sets of my friends’ family-reunion photos on Facebook, I was thinking intensely about this family-gathering hostility that I still harbor; and the question arose in my mind wondering what about this family-reunion experience appeals to the folks who DO like to attend them?

I know old folks like to gather all the little chicks around and say “See what I did with my oldfolkreunionlife?!!!  Here they are—right here! You all came from ME! Aren’t I proud? Look what I did. I made ALL of YOU!”

I get that part. I’ve heard older folks say that very thing as justification for why we were all torturing ourselves playing nice for parents and grandparents during that required togetherness time.

And many folks feel that family reunions carry on traditions and ancestral heritage—long sheets of genealogical trees are spread out on picnic tables while gnarled fingers trace lineage from some distant relation in some far away land—an ancient relative who once traveled the greatest adventure of his and her life by coming to America to create this new life here for all of us—even for Uncle Sonny and Uncle Dicky, bless their pathetic, perverted hearts.

Once in awhile, the old folks exclaim with glee queentree.jpgpointing at the far-right tree branch, this part of the family tree produced some genuinely PERFECT fruits—real peaches who made the perfect peach marmalade or jam and produced the PERFECT offspring themselves who did likewise, etc..   “Look what this branch over here produced—all these great people—they are all relatives of ours! Look how successful or prominent they were/are.”

Implied, of course, is that that branch’s success meant that the entire tree trunk must have value. And likewise, so do we—even if we can’t see it materially at this time, but we know that one of our future direct ancestors might prove us worthy of having existed at this less-than-ideal time of us personally. It gives us hope for our future redemption.

I guess our weakness as human beings is that we long for connection to others—long for belonging to the greater tribe—long for some verification of our existential validity. Genealogical tracings seem to give some folks great comfort.  I can acknowledge this fact, but I’m also not maxinespeakstruthone of those folks.

“We carry their bloodline,” we say if they are positive role models for us; and if they aren’t we say, “Must have been some overnight fling with a fly-by-nighter that slipped into our lineage. They aren’t really OUR kin.  We sure don’t claim them.”  (Ever think that on someone else’s lineage tree, they don’t claim you either?)

So while I do understand that some folks really get into family reunions, to me it is another one of those quests to determine what it is that we lack in ourselves that we try to find in others and in their familial relationships to us.  What hollowness within us do we keep trying to fill in our search for definable connection to our heritage and bloodline?

disfunctionfamily56.pngAnd when we occasionally run across our own version of an Uncle Sonny or an Uncle Dicky, do we likewise just shake our heads and say “Nope!  Not in MY family tree!”

Or do we risk alienation from the family to do something about it, and make the family secrets stop?

I shouldn’t even have to ask that question.

“Grasping the ‘Process of Becoming’”

This morning I was listening to my favorite layperson’s astrologer, Kaypacha Lescher, on kaypachalescher5.jpgthis week’s energy influences affecting us (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IKSKz3d03eI&feature=share ) and he said a few things that resonated with me that I wanted to pass along to anyone else who might be interested.

We, as all our ancestors before us have done,  are trudging the path of evolution; and no matter how essential it is that we all do this, it’s not an easy trek, especially in these latest energies flooding our lives at present.

During that somewhat difficult evolutionary life-journey, he said we must realize that taking life’s final bow while expelling one last breath isn’t the major achievement of a life well lived: “It’s not about reaching processofbecquote.pngthe goal, but grasping the “process of becoming” (that matters), so we can share, teach, and make it happen for us all together.”

I considered that statement: “Grasping the ‘process of becoming’.”   What does that really mean?

He elaborated on the importance of being here NOW: That this moment is where we presently are—being stretched thin between who we were in our past and who we will become in our future.  And the only place you can make any course adjustments for your journey, is in the NOW.

NOW—this moment—this time period, affects your path forward in every possible way.

NOW can make a course correction in your life by taking that first simple step in a completely different direction.

anisninquoteproofbec“In fact,” as Kaypacha further explained, “The key point between the sameness of your past and an entirely different future is your NOW.”

Meaning that if you aren’t happy about where your life presently is or what baggage your past actions have accumulated and you want to find deeper meaning to your life—to your reason(s) for being here, then do so right NOW because this moment is the gateway to the person you are next becoming.

The “becoming” itself is the most important part of the entire consideration here because it implies you/we are mid soul-state change. We are “evolving” into something other than what we presently are.

Evolution is one of those words we think only applies to Darwinian beasties who farwin quote6.jpglaboriously crawled from the ocean on leg-like fins, or swung from the trees supported by long tails that no longer exist.

But evolution simply means a process of changing from one mode of operation to another that is more productive and likely more survival-oriented for the species.

Personal evolution can also be both more productive and survival focused, but it can also apply to living a life that is more meaningful to us.

It is important for us to fully realize that we, as individuals and as a self-aware species, are “in the process of becoming”—but that we aren’t already there.  Legs on that fish didn’t appear mid-crawl, nor did chimps walk upright after a revelatory dream in the night.

We need to give ourselves the space and time to spiritually/mentally/emotionally evolve probecbutteryfly.jpgand recognize that the person we are right now will likely not be the same person that we are soon going to be.

Our forward movement just depends on that conscious choice to maximize this very moment by stepping boldly in the direction we NOW wish to travel.

Grasp the evolutionary process itself, but more importantly, grasp the opportunity to make course corrections in the NOW that you are being provided.

Rather than wasting time in regret of your unpleasant past or speculation on a too-distant future, use NOW as the forward action toward your dreams.

You are “becoming” whomever it is that you wish to be.

The Purpose of the Universe

I did remember there was one quote in Chopra’s book that I wanted to salvage before shoving it onto the “oblivion shelf”:

“We participate in the universe by finding order and figuring out where the patterns come from. Einstein hit upon a deep truth when he said,I want to know the mind of God; everything else is just details.’  Substitute ‘the purpose of the universe’ for tolledivinepurposeof universe‘the mind of God’ and you have a goal worth pursuing for a lifetime.” (p73, You Are the Universe, etc.)

I’m pretty sure that is the very thing I said not long ago that I am pursuing in this blog: I want to know the purpose of the universe. I want to know the why’s, and how’s and where’s, and when’s of it all. So if I ever had a doubt that this is the right path for me to follow, I guess Deepak just confirmed for me that it is.

Thank you, Deepak!  Maybe that quote alone will move you from the “oblivion shelf” to the “think-about-it shelf” .

He also further described the ‘all choice possibilities’ being explored in M-theory and multiverses, which were favorite subjects of Stephen Hawking and Max multidefinition4.jpgTegmark, besides being one of my favorite subjects in this blog.

But rather than seriously considering the “multiverse” concept, Chopra/Kafatos said they prefer the concept that “the universe is self-organizing, driven by its own working processes. In a self-organizing system, each new layer of creation must regulate the prior layer. So the generation of every new layer in the universe, from particle to star to galaxy to black hole, cannot be considered random, given that it was created from a pre-existing layer that in turn was regulating the layer that produced it.” (p 71)

Hmmm.  Who said the multiverse was random, Deepak?  wattsquote76

I consider the multiverse intentional and more self-educating by whatever choice is made.  Isn’t “self-educating” how they train AI (artificial intelligence) systems? They learn from their previous choices and the results obtained from them, as to how successful those choices were to achieving their end goal?  And doesn’t that parallel how humans learn through our species-inherited rewards/punishment behavior motivators—just exponentially faster?

Anyway, those were a few quotes I did mark for further consideration from the You Are the Universe book.

True, one can find substantiating evidence no matter where one looks for any personally-held theory, but that also is a contributing aspect of the expanding human universe we daily live through our own unique perspectives and interpretations.

“It isn’t what we look at that is important, but what we see that makes it so.”

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“Blowciferousnous”

There.  I’ve created the perfect descriptor for politicians who try to cash in on tragedies just to get their own mugs on the evening news and to hear themselves “blowfuscate” about flagrant injustices occurring near them while pushing their own tainted agendas that helped create the very situation they are now railing against.  Most politicians in today’s world are nothing more than “blowciferous.”3ofhtenotsamekind.jpg

Political blowhards like to hear themselves talk—a lot! And they really prefer a captive audience like they can garner at press briefings after the latest school shooting. Senators, governors, the president—they all line up to so sadly address the cameras with meaningless platitudes and empty promises for a better tomorrow than today had unfortunately turned out to be.

Vociferousness is what they offer—a vocal outcry for pseudo-reform that isn’t really reform at all—just meaningless noise from a propagator whose sole purpose was to appear at the news conference itself—not to help those in the aftermath who are genuinely scared or are grieving with deep loss—but to step in front of the gathered crowd and act like they are taking charge of the situation, when instead they are the very people who have helped to create it.

Blowhards obfuscate—they shout their indignation to obscure the situation’s genuine meaning and manipulate the truth of what has actually occurred.

Blowciferous politicians bewilder their listeners with coarse banality and unintelligible logic. They portray themselves as champions for social change, when of course, they are just the opposite.  Status quo serves them far too well to support meaningful change in our society and culture.

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Any tragedy deserves heartfelt sympathy, as do the people who are most affected by the loss of loved ones. To them there are no words that can ease the depth of their pain—no “our hearts and prayers go out to the families” bullshit spoken far too frequently and with less and less conviction each time repeated.

And absolutely NO ONE deserves self-serving politicians trying to cash in on the latest school shooting with no other remedy for protecting our kids than to “arm the teachers.”

In my humble opinion, NRA-loving politicians should be careful with those suggestions.

If you arm enough teachers as the primary solution to our most serious social problems, you might not be around long to witness the result of your actions because teachers are already pretty fed up putting their own lives on the line day after day—without receiving combat pay.  Even teachers have limited patience when their elected officials refuse to do their jobs.

The real solution:  Don’t add more guns to schools!

Make the change at the ballot box—change representatives.  Eliminate gun lobbies. Stop celebrating the gun culture.

It’s time for meaningful social change and time for a new breed of representatives of peace-loving people.

No more “blowciferous” politicians!  Tell them simply: “Do your job or be thrown out.”

And then actually DO IT.giffordsquote.jpg

Conflicting Contextual Vocabularies for Our REALITY Experience

The advantage of having so many unusual personal experiences and such broad energy-reality einstein3.jpgbased training opportunities is that they provide me with an expansive working framework from which to form my own opinions on life processes, as well as opinions on the underpinnings of our group reality.

The disadvantage of being trained in so many different energy-manipulation techniques and healing disciplines is that sometimes the “rules” and vocabulary of one healing universe clashes with the nomenclature (categories and classification) of another healing universe, creating clarity confusion in perspective and interpretation of the playing field itself.

That is the problem I felt internally with some of the statements I had just made in the previous posting on “stuck in past-lives”. From the hypnosis and philosophical aspect, onerealitypercept6.png cannot really be “stuck” (still existing) in that past-life situation while currently viewed from the present-life situation. Only energy patterns can be maintained in multi-settings until resolved between the two situations.

HOWEVER (the inevitable ‘however’), from a shamanic perspective one could state that soul-part retrieval actually performs the function of bringing back an energetic part of someone who is still “stuck” in that other dimensional existence, and without the soul-part retrieval, the present-day person is incomplete and missing an aspect of their soul—which is the complete energy-body unit.

I have actually participated in this shamanic soul-retrieval process, both as a practitioner and as a subject, so I know how it works, what you see as the practitioner during the soulretrieval7.jpgprocess, and how it feels as a subject when the wayward energy-part returns to you. So part of me says that if you viewed the “stuck there” situation strictly from the perspective of shamanic soul-retrieval, one might refer to it as “part of the person was still stuck there.”  But as a hypnotist and an intuitive, I would NOT refer to it in that manner.

How do I resolve that discrepancy in my statement of ‘what remains stuck’ where?

If I were far more intellectually advanced than I presently am and knew all there is to know about everything, I’m sure I’d have no problem clarifying my declarations within the TRUTH matrix of “how things actually work.”

Unfortunately, as a lowly human, I’m limited in my understanding and experience of contextdependent6.jpgALL that IS. I can only relate and explain the functions of the unseen universe we live in as best I can within my own frame of contextual reference.

I can speculate on how things actually work. I can guess at others. But I don’t know of anyone who can definitively claim that he or she knows the universal laws of physics when it pertains to multi-verses and multi-lives lived within them other than saying purely and simply that WE ARE MULTI-DIMENSIONAL ENERGY UNITS. That part I do understand and that feels like a TRUE statement to me.

HOW that ENERGY is actually packaged and dispersed throughout the multi-verses is the question.

WHY it happens the way it does, is also the question.vrearthplanes5.jpg

WHERE it happens is of course always a biggie since I keep mentioning the Virtual Reality and Simulated Reality possibilities, but the WHEN of it happening keeps us locked in this loop of “can’t quite make sense” of how this all transpires (Are all multi-lives happening simultaneously—no past or future, only NOW and in parallel?), and it relates to the OVERALL picture because we don’t know what that completed picture is supposed to look like.

We don’t even know what we don’t know.

I could simply be trying to justify this confusing mess in my own head; but I also think there is more importance here than letting this whole ‘What is reality?’ question slip silently back into the shadows of our distant memory because our ego feels way too uncomfortable just thinking about it.

My guess, and it is only an intuitive nudge, is that if I am questioning all this ‘What is reality?’ stuff right now, then many others are doing so as well, which could be further evidence that we, as a self-aware species, are finally awakening to our true energetic potential, and are now desiring to know our true origins.

What happens when we finally do figure it all out?lifttheveilreality.jpg

No clue.

It could be “GAME OVER” for all of us and time for a NEW game.   If that’s the case, let’s hope it is one less violent in nature.