Archives for the month of: July, 2014

I woke up two days ago with a whole book running through me. It is a book about union.  After getting the bulk of it in that early morning rising, I was able to see that this project may well move concurrently with some blocks I am working on releasing right now.  About three weeks ago, perhaps longer, there was this release deep within the root that I had been circling for years.  As it has lifted, one side channel within one center, I tend to expect other things to give or lift into awareness.

The deepest part of this project involves union at our deepest levels, and in order to do this properly, if I am to write less from the head and from the whole of me, then I have to get to work living this.  This is how these things tend to go.  A project like this is a kind of slight of hand where something in my higher self is conspiring to lead me into places even I do not fully know how to do for whatever my limitations impose on me.  But in the process, it is worked out.  Like magic, we undo ourselves.  How did I accomplish that?  Something bigger is in the wings.

The book is about each center, the major centers for energy called wheels or discs in Sanskrit, meaning chakra.  But for me, they are each wombs for the creative fire to be lit.  Each one resonates at a different frequency.  each has both masculine and feminine capacities and currents moving through them.  One is pierces from below while it in turn pierces the next, if you follow a straight-line progression (which this type of thing is not always so—nor necessary that it even be so!). But still it is a nice image.

It is a book on Tantric practice from someone who has not studied Tantra one whit….or much at all.  But I am audacious enough to state that I know it…..that we all know it to varying degrees.  This is important because Tantra as a practice is based on an overarching energy that is what we are.  When we work with it by refining our energies of creative potential, it is what Tantra is even if we do not call it that.  The good thing is that this can be known directly in your own experience.  Most who awaken speak of being initiated into Tantric practice even if they never knew what the fine points of it are in the Tibetan tradition.  My efforts are not in seeking to emulate any system, but to create imagery that Westerners may be able to relate to.

We will see how it goes!  With Waking The Infinite, as a manuscript all but done (save for some editing work), the creative juices are continually moving.  This effort, though, I think will be much shorter and to the point than WTI has been.  It begins with solitary work, which is, I feel, the very core of all authentic practice and which is necessary in order to “get it right” and then moves into an understanding of the vessels, their liberation from past patterns to how each works with the other in a process of both sublimation, liberation, and union.  Liberation and union may seem at first to be at cross purposes, but it is I feel what lies before us.  Might seem dual, but then so do Shakti and Shiva seem dual (but they aren’t).

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Upon waking, my soul and heart of my heart whispers, “Make it right….make the Bridal Chamber within you  your mirror of the world.”  With this single knowing command, a truth is given….and lying at its heart, a wonderful mystery.

When I awoke, I entered this chamber within…I tasted divine union from its very beginning. I entered its mystery and knew its wonders.  This is a mirrored chamber…which was one of the greatest of its teachers….the one silent gift and mysteries provided by the Gnostic writings….the mirrored chamber.  I soon learned what this all meant for me.  Stubbornly, in bits and pieces.  I could not deny what this image had to teach me.  And each time I return, everything is different, everything is new, and the reflection I see is always changing.

To get the mirror reflection right is my souls purpose and my greatest work.  I am bequeathed this gift from the start, just as we each are.  I learn how to make my reflection a clear image of the divine….so that on the day when I can no longer see who is the earthly self and the heavenly one, I will have won the message within the lesson of the mirrors of the Bridal Chamber…the place where the union rises from shadow into the light. Within  this gift, I need no other path or Way or method, just continuing refinement as I make my image pleasing in the eye of the divine…which dwells within and shows me the way. I wait for the day when the eye of the divine is the same as mine.  Until it is continuously known, I have more undressing, more stripping away, more shame to remove from this  walk through the world.

It confers upon me many blessings, many gifts, which I take gladly and joyfully.

Everything  for me becomes religion.  A gaze, a smile, a walk down the street is all a-riot of this religion…trees swaying in a cool  breeze as the whole world opens up and speaks to me.  Every particle bears this.  I feel so blessed.  How can I ignore it? It is my salvation, my ransom…if I will but listen and know all of life is calling me  into its mystery.  It has been easy for me to focus only on the shadow in hopes of healing it, the residual  which remains, and get down on myself, but I know in the love of this Presence within me that I am truly blessed.  Am I whole, complete?  I don’t know.  I don’t pretend to know.  I am being guided by a hand far superior to my own and like the bride, I return to the bridal chamber to learn more, to grow ever closer to my beloved.  Here is where I seek to reverse the fortunes of the world I have known.  It is here I seek to redeem, ransom, and save the past by healing it all.

All of this is ours.  All of this is what we will each inherit.  If not here and now, then in an infinity of nows.  There is time enough and love enough for each of us to know it…..when we each are ready.

 

Deeper and deeper it goes

a splinter welling up from deep within

a threat to unsettle everything you have spent working for

a connundrum

a voice in the night tells you

“take it off!”

Shaken

you settle back into your slumber

but unable to forget what you tell yourself was madness

or dream.

 

So it goes.

 

A deep upwelling

how long will it take?

What forms will it manifest?

It is only a matter of time

for when we carry such a backlog of masks

lies we tell ourselves to keep ourselves living fat and happy

there comes that moment

of utmost courage

to step out of the realm of normal madness

and into the divine.

 

Gibran spoke of it.

He took them all off

and now a voice wells up within

telling you to do it too.

It is the authentic

which is enough to scare the pants off you.

But take it off.

Take them all off.

Do not fear standing naked

for you will wear nothing

but bear all within you

the truth that is what you are

like one single brilliant light

shining through the muck of all that has been built

an act such as this is enough

to tear it all down.

 

This temple may fall

but will be rebuilt in moments

with such a power as this by your side.

So take off the masks

all of your precious beliefs

about what you are

to know what Is.

 

 

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I am lucky, I think, to live in an area that has such a variety of locations out in nature that can be explored and enjoyed. Here in these mountains there are many little-known locations that have remained pristine. There are swimming holes, carefully guarded (hush hush) for fear of their certain popularity ruining them. Down a country road that goes from hardtop to dirt, a bridge that sways down low so the waters can roll over it in case of a flood….very old school. I know of no other bridge quite like that. But there it is still, a few miles from my boyhood home, around three curves and you are where that swimming hole is. You would never know it because it is tucked up around a hill behind some trees. Park in the field, a scramble over moss-covered rocks, a dip through mountain laurel, a massive stone outcropping and down it goes, slanting all the way to the river.

There are mountains high enough to give you a 35 mile view on clear days. A double falls, cascades, and many lesser-known caves which will take you from a grand room down a shaft 40 feet below, and a journey through a horizontal shaft where you walk in an underwater creek, bent over. Most just crawl in the water.

Covered bridges, rivers, swimming holes, caves, artisan studios!

So it was a few days ago that I took my nephew up into our mountains to go see a local waterfall. it is perhaps one of my top five favorite hikes. While walking up to the Falls, I thought about how I had climbed a mountain in my old stomping grounds in these Blue Ridge Mountains some 20 years ago. I had gone up there just after a storm had rolled through. I was moving up to the summit and as I did I came across a wild tiger lily. Delicate, orange, gold, yellow with flecks of brown and maroon, the sight had been burned into my visual memory. I have always been partial to wild varieties of flowers for how delicate they are. Many domesticated varieties seek to get a flower to heavy and big that it limps its way along on its stem. These wild varieties, something about them is just….so sexy because they are wild, natural, like the goddess in her natural state. No pretense. And as I was about to tell my companion about this experience I came around the bend and voila! A single tiger lily, identical to the one I had seen in the backwoods all those years ago, a sight I had not had the chance to have again….until that very moment.

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So what are the chances? The timing, perfect, we kept moving as the sky dropped rain. As we passed a family on our way we said “hows it going!” In the rain the Dad smiled and said “Lovin’ it!” I replied, “I know just what you mean!”

In the dappled sunlight, wild flowers, all natural and indigenous varieties met us along the way.
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Rhododendron is everywhere. It is a vine-like bush that carpets the forests and likes shade. It has flowers through most of the summer. Their scent is so mild that it is easy to miss, but when you know it, you never forget it. This variety is kin to the bay which we use for cooking. The leaves are a very very large version of the cooking variety. Hard and waxy, these are evergreen plants.

 

Top view of the tiger lily: its petals fold all the way backwards!

Top view of the tiger lily: its petals fold all the way backwards!

 

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Our path through the woods is covered in rhododenron. IMG_20140724_155426

A millipede crosses our path, hundreds of legs operating in perfectly synchrony
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A remnant of the Depression era WPA, a works project called CCA was used to build wild mountain trails in our neck of the woods. These were most often college-aged men who would spend their summers up in the mountains felling trees and dragging stone into the hills to build rugged trails. Our Cascades were the recipient of just such a program. While I like the idea of clambering over the boulders that line the path up the small gorge that leads to the Falls up ahead, the pathways are pretty great.

 

 

 
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With a place like this, who needs temples and churches and ashrams? This world of mine is a temple where I feel the God and Goddess moving in stick, stone, moss, river, and sky. And at the top of our journey into the woods? A great waterfall and one heck of a swimming hole beneath it!
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I don’t need anyone to tell me what to believe or think or feel. I am here, directly linked into nature. if there ever was a religion for me, this is certainly it. I worship the wonder of nature, the grace carried in a smile, and those moments no camera can capture so the mind remembers ever-more-vividly. Sometimes I feel I could just melt into nature completely and just fade from the self I was into something akin to dryads or nymphs….aligned to the forces of nature….barely there….but felt. Can you feel it?

So in every corner of this world there is so much to be thankful for. For nature, I am thankful.

Orange Closeup sizedYour heart center is one of the most amazing creations you could ever believe. It can literally lead you to a place within yourself and the universe that you simply did not know existed. Those are tall words, I know, but it is true. I am not talking syrupy sweetness, but a connection to a force that will leave you without words. In fact, for some who have experienced the profundity of a heart opening they can be left feeling at odd ends in a world like ours. I did.

But what it showed me was something so revolutionary that I was dumbfounded. When this event took place the first time, I was as I usually am with things like this; observing carefully. I don’t know what it is, perhaps it is the acceleration in consciousness that does this, but it seems as though I am operating on multiple channels at once. That might sound a bit hard to wrap your head around, but I have observed that when we shift focus from our normal way of being a LOT can be experienced in a VERY short period of time. As if time is slowed down even as it flows at normal speed. Perhaps as though some part of me steps out of ordinary earthly time and can spend a lot of “time” observing what is taking place. And what have I found?

I have found that these heart openings, which some call union with the divine, are a matter of our choice. This is not a mental choice that we make, but a deep fundamental one, and as a result is less about thinking as it is with feeling. And for me, it was like being taken by the divine. The only way this could have happened the way it did was that I had had enough experiences with my own inner yin or divine feminine. The level of receptivity and willingness to take something within myself is something that quite honestly was not part of my functional framework as a male. Wasn’t I the initiating energy? Well yes. But there is way more to these experiences than that. Without the receptive inward flowing energy of the feminine I don’t know I would have been able to feel this in the way I did.

But it was a choice. Something inside of me just opened up. Completely. In one case I was skimming a book online about Nondual Saivism called The Triadic Heart Of Siva. What was so interesting was that right after I had the first opening in a spontaneous way, the book went on to begin to describe openings of the heart, something I had never heard of before. It was as though in that moment something in me anticipated this and then experienced it. It is as though something was telling me I didn’t need a book to tell me how this was done. This repeated itself later the same day. The physical result was that I felt my body arch upward and my head flew back uncontrollably. It was such a powerful feeling I could not help but react in this way. This is not something I would call a kriya (involuntary movement) in the typical sense, but is itself a natural response we all seem to have when experiencing such powerful flows of divine energy.

the first initiation into these heart openings happened early one morning when a being came into my room who announced that his name was Sandalphon and that he was a Seraphim. He reached into my heart center and pulled out what felt like a body….a body without bones. Yes, I know, that is kind of weird. However, the feeling was incredibly vivid, which helped to highlight what then took place, which was that a major clearing had taken place in my body. All through my upper torso I felt a sense of clarity and lack of clutter. I had a distinct sensation of two spots in my upper lungs that felt as though something had been pulled away. It was tender. The tender spot was at my back near my shoulder blades. I was told by this being that he was going to take this dark mass of energy and show it to “Source.”

Over the course of a few days this being showed up again and explained that he had been my protector, showing me an image of himself as he appeared to me over 20 years ago during a time when I was seeing him a lot during efforts I was making at the time to project consciousness from my body. I was at the time wanting to experience this with the thought that in so doing I could conquer fear of death. It seemed like a reasonable thing, like how the Tibetans have their Book Of the Dead to help prepare for life beyond the physical body. If you know me, you know that I have never been one to go in for angels. But here he was, showing up as unusually tall, stooping in order to stand in my bedroom. When I went online to type in his name, he was described as one of the tallest of the angels.

It would turn out that there is an account, nearly identical to my own that was written by a Christian mystic who lived in the 1500’s by the name of St. Teresa of Avila who had an experience with an angel who pulled her insides out of her while she was on fire with a “great love of God.” This angel took an arrow tipped in gold fire and plunged it into her heart whereupon he pulled out something that felt like her insides. Exactly! But only ONE account? Is that all?

Heart openings put us in touch with our native ability to connect with the divine at a level that is difficult to even put into words. It is so singular an experience it is hard to square with anything else. I think if I was able to connect into that kind of energy on a more continual basis, I think that my process of inner cleansing would be so much the faster. But maybe the point is to catalyze us with these singular experiences to show us how we, as humans, can touch upon so much more.

So how? Surrender. A deep state of surrender that is complete and total. To do this requires that you let go of all fear, all resistance. Once this is overcome or released, little stands in the way. It is I think also the result of a deep desire to reconnect with this lost part of ourselves. It seems to require a willingness that goes from toe to crown, and something in you just opens up. The feeling in the heart is one of unusual expansiveness. The feeling I had in the back of my mind was “really? I am opening up THAT MUCH?” Yes. That much.

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In the last few days I have been out with family kayaking one of the oldest rivers in the world that happens to snake its way through our region of the Blue Ridge and Alleghenies. So old, this river runs from south to north, a river whose bed was established long before the earth shifted its physical axis. We are kind of proud of her. And so it was that as my daughter and I stood skipping stones in the river I found a rock shaped perfectly into a heart. It reminded me of another event where every stone I picked up was heart shaped. The message then as now is that love is the single most important thing, and when we can go beyond the things that serve to limit us, what is left is without limit. Our concept of love also changes in the process. All of the little loves in our life….love of our job, family, hobbies, and more are like subsets of a larger canopy overarching all of these other perfectly valid forms of love…..a kind of BIG LOVE that is waiting for each and every one of us.

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We can get so serious sometimes.  We say the spiritual is such important work.  We make statues of this process and put things high up on pedestals. So for today, I offer you a JOKE!

A Zen monk, who is visiting New Your City, walks up to a hotdog stand.  He looks at the owner of the cart and says, cracking a faint smile,  “Make me one with everything.”

The vendor gives him his hotdog and the monk gives him a twenty dollar bill.  The vendor slips the bill into his pocket.  The monk pauses and then asks, “But where is my change?”  The vendor gives him a quick glance and replies, “Change comes from within.”

 

Be well and don’t forget to smile!

I have no doubt moved into a period where I am much quieter these days as it relates to blogging.  Truth is, as I have gotten deeper into this thing it has simply been less of a need to pass on things….I continue to be utterly fascinated with how the world bloomed and continues to do so on a daily basis….but the steps being made now have been ones that had previously tripped me up in my life.  So many assumptions that I had made, in fear, are evaporating as what I was unsure of before resolve into certainty.  With this has come a great desire to do my work in a quieter way.

Book work has been intense lately as I have been wrestling with a manuscript that keeps wanting to get away from me.  There is just so much I feel needs to be said, said well, and….well….the truth is, I was not born a writer.  I have to work at it. But when it works, its a perfect window into this amazing world that dwells in each of us.  With work on the manuscript finally getting into a manageable size, I feel that finally things are looking they way they should.  It has meant that I have had to codify in my editing what others had been telling me for a number of years, “Parker, you don’t have one book, but more like three.”  I wish I could have just snipped their perspective out and patched it into my own.  This book has been like a 600 foot long painting where you get lost in the details. Or, like a house with 500 rooms, it is hard to keep tabs on each one of them.  Like that.

The other has been a slew of new things that have been pushing my process forward, including a new chakra.  I say “new” because hardly anyone ever talks about it.  I think there is a reason for this, but for me, energetically, I have only recently begun to feel its energetic presence until just a few months ago.  I honestly don’t know what this represents or what it will mean later, but in a general way it suggests to me, energetically that centers are clearing out and energy is flowing into new regions.  To give you a hint, I will ask you if you hear what I hear?  😉

New releases of old energy have shifted my perspective significantly.  And honestly, it could not come a moment too soon.  With it has come an increased sense of autonomy and freedom.  It has brought a greater silence as I grow curious just what will happen when the whole dustbin is emptied out entirely.  Having been at this for about seven years, I have seen this energy in awakening sweep from one level of the chakras to the next level, a term the Hindu’s call the koshas.  Its been quite a trip and reaching down to what I sense is a more substantive emptying out of the old, I feel an odd calm that I have not felt before in quite the same way.  It takes some getting used to and as with all of these releases is a bit like that moment when you shift a manual transmission from one gear to another.  There is this momentary wonder about what lies ahead.  But whatever it is, I signed up for it!

So that’s the news from these Blue Ridge mountains.  For now.

~P

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