HERETIC ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WARNING; READING THIS BLOG MAY PROVE UNHEALTHY TO YOUR ORTHODOXY!!!!

Friday, September 18, 2020

Intentional Magick

'Abracadabra'

'Bippity, boppity, boo'

'Double bubble, toil & trouble'

There can be no doubt that words have power, but do words like those listed above actually have the power to change reality? 'First off', one might well ask, 'what IS Reality?' What determines if something is real or just a figment of our imagination? Do WE determine what is 'real', or is there an Absolute?! Can we alter Reality ( not just ours ) by uttering Words of Power like those above? These questions, as well as others like them, may seem frivolous, inconsequential, or even silly & stupid to some, but to others, they give pause to consider, at the very least. Reality, to most, IS Absolute! 'It is what it is' comes to mind. In this application, though, it should be understood to refer more to the choices of those around us, than to a deterministic, fatalistic type of view. It is true that, as far as our senses are concerned, inanimate objects, such as a block of wood or a stone ( boulder? ), are part of that Reality. It should be noted too, that, again, physically ( biologically ) speaking, we are a part of that Reality, as well. However, the Reality to which I'm referring here is an ever-changing one. While everyone may seem to be subject to the same Reality, in truth, everyone has their own Reality. determined by the choices we make as individuals. IE, because of personal choices, to whatever extent, one person's Reality may seem more hellish, while on the other hand, another feels they're walking on 'Cloud Nine'. Both Realities are very real, or at least, so it seems, but the perception is different!

Magick, as opposed to Magic, is Reality itself! The latter is an Illusion, mere ( however convincing ) parlor tricks, sleight-of-hand, while the other happens on a daily basis. Magick has been given a bad name over the years, with its practitioners operating under a cloud of stigma. Television, for the most part, hasn't helped in this arena, often portraying witches as evil & while that stigma may have lessened somewhat in general over the years, the magick practiced by witches is portrayed as almost supernatural ability. In fact, for the most part, these portrayals are noticeably ignorant of truth, being presented simply as 'magic'. Magick can be likened, perhaps, to what most call 'miracles'. This might warrant a post of its own ( maybe even a blog ), but Miracles, while they often seem supernatural, not unlike Magick, are an everyday occurrence as well. The birth of a child, for instance. From conception to its emergence into this cold, cruel world, the growth of the child, not to mention its very existence, is nothing short of miraculous. Planting a seed in the ground & watching it grow to fruition is a very similar process & hardly any less of a Miracle. Both of these, while many attribute the Miracle to 'God' ( or Whoever ), the Truth is that they are simply everyday occurrences & completely natural, biologically speaking.

Intention, unconscious or not, is what motivates us, humanly speaking. One example from my own experience is that when someone did us a perceived wrong & ended up hurting us either physically or emotionally, after being made aware of what they did, their response would be something along the lines of, 'I never meant to hurt you'. "Well, you didn't mean not to, did you?', was usually my sharp ( hurt ) retort! The point is, our intentions are manifested in our actions. When it comes to emotional harm, of course, it becomes difficult to discern between harm which we actually cause & that which is simply that person's perception. When we intentionally ( consciously ) practice doing what we know is good, just & true, we are, in essence, doing Magick!

Doing Magick can include ( depending on your chosen religion, or way of life ) the use of certain words, such as those above, or phrases, even chants or prayers. However, to practice Magick, one doesn't need to cast spells, perform certain rites, or utter incantations. One needs only to have the intention to do a certain thing & it will be done, if one's intentions are true. In the same vein, one's intentions may be true, but if what they intend is NOT good, just & true, that one may be perceived as practicing 'Black Magick'! 'Black Magick' is usually attributed to Satanic activity or devil-worship, involving dark incantations, or even the summoning of evil spirits & calling on the 'Dark Lord' himself!

While intentions are not always good ( ? ), our intentions lead us. Speaking of Magick, contrary to popular opinion, simply by intending to sprout literal wings & fly, one cannot thusly defy the laws of gravity ( ? ). It could be rightly said, however, that Orville & Wilbur Wright did just that, metaphorically speaking! Following their intentions to the end, the brothers figured out how to sustain flight & now, thanks to the same technology, even space travel has become almost matter-of-fact. Intentions help us to accomplish what might seem impossible to the casual observer. Call them Miracles, call it Magick, everything begins with our Intentions, whether it's a new life ( human ), or the Miracle of Flight!

There is a common thread, so to speak, running through both Magick & its illusory pretender; both are possible through Intentions. a mere magician ( parlor tricks, etc ) intends to fool his audience into thinking he ( or she ) has sawn a person in half, while still preserving their life, or just simply guessing ( correctly ) the card they chose. Magick, on the other hand, is a bit more mundane ( ? ), simply being the result of one's intentions for good. As we saw, simply by intending to 'sprout wings & fly', one cannot defy the Laws of Nature ( ? ), for example, but with the right intentions, plus plenty of blood, sweat & tears, one can indeed take flight into worlds unknown!

Reality, in the Greatest Sense, IS what you make it!

Namaste' & Blessed Be,

Charles Haddon Shank

Sunday, September 06, 2020

Beyond Dreams

Whether we realize it or not, when our body rests, we enter into the realm of dreams. Some people keep a dream journal by our respective beds so that when we return from that ( realm ) to this physical ( material ) realm, we can jot down what we remember from our sojourn there. There is no question that when we go to sleep, we enter another realm, not physically speaking, of course, but mentally, spiritually. Even if we aren't aware of our time in this realm, we all enter this state of consciousness! Some people enter this state during what are normally called 'waking hours'. Though these may seem to be somewhat different than our 'sleeping dreams', they're really not; dreams are dreams, whether we're awake or not, whether we're aware or not! The question is, 'what ARE dreams?' Are they reality, or are they merely our unconscious 'mind' manifesting our hopes or fears? Some have learned to pay attention to these dreams, as they believe, or 'know', rather, that these dreams are messages from their Higher Selves, warning them of what may happen if they continue the course they're on, or in other words, by making certain choices.

Dreams are funny things. 'As above, so below'; they can include anything from pleasant ones, like what are often called 'wet dreams' to premonitions of what we subconsciously ( or consciously ) fear may be looming on the horizon. Dreams can also take the form of nightmares, again, usually involving fear, with either scenes of things we hold remorse over, such as killing in war-time, or again, premonitions that our actions will have terrifying consequences! These should not, however, be feared, as they are messages from Beyond, whether powered by our conscious or unconscious 'mind'. The Mind is a powerful thing!! It is also something to be aware of; It can be deceitful! We create our own 'reality', our own 'truth', through it. Here's where we come face to face with the Ego. As we've noted previously, the Ego is neither good nor bad; It, like the Mind, just IS. It is when we allow them to control our lives that we get into trouble. Don't get me wrong, both the Mind & Ego CAN be put to good use. In this thing we call 'Life', one usually won't get far without a good, strong Mind; the Ego also helps keep us afloat in the busyness of the 'day-to-day', especially in this 'dog-eat-dog' world!

The question, at this juncture, is ( or should be ) 'what IS 'Life'?' If Life is simply ( ? ) the 'busyness of the 'day-to-day' in this 'dog-eat-dog' world', then maybe we should all just go Home! Is stepping on the backs of the down-trodden so that we, personally speaking, can get ahead really living, or is it just surviving? "Survival of the fittest' may not be as popular a phrase as it used to be, but it sure has manifested well ( ? ) over the ages! For all intents & purposes, one might well call this physical experience 'Life', but is that all there is to It?! We live & die, then we come back to Life to do it all over again ( hopefully with better results )? Now, the question that REALLY needs answering is, 'who ARE we?'

Knowing Who & What we are is of utmost importance! So 'people have 'survived' without truly knowing themselves for ages', one might object. That's true; they 'survived', only to 'die' & begin the cycle all over again ( some people are just slow learners ). To truly live, one MUST develop an understanding of Who & What they really are! It's been said before ( many times ) that we are spirits having a physical experience. Whether one believes this or not, 'it is what it is'; while believing ( knowing ) this will make the biggest difference in how we live our lives on this earth, it IS possible, through our choices ( powered by 'free-will' ) to do More than to just survive this experience. To truly LIVE, though, one must, to some extent at least, know themselves for Who & What they truly are. Not that this is an easy proposition. It IS, however, a simple one.  

Simple meditation, if we can but quiet our Minds & Egos, can do wonders for our soul, like 'Chicken Soup', one might say! Meditation is not 'the end-all', of course; it's simply a means to an end. The goal of meditation is More than just quieting the Mind, though that IS necessary; it is THROUGH quieting the Mind that One begins to realize that the Mind isn't all It's cracked up to be! 'As above, so below'; it is 'good', in this day & age especially, to have a Mind that is not easily swayed by outside influence, by 'others', so to speak, but in order to 'see' past the rigamarole of this thing we call 'Life, One must first stall the Mind, bypassing the Ego, to find the 'Us' that NEVER changes!

As a human being myself, personally speaking, I can surely understand that, with the busyness of 'Life & our hectic 'day-to-day', it is difficult, some might even say 'damn near impossible' to find the time to meditate! As they say, though, we must MAKE time!`If we can't take the time to get to know the Real Us, all we'll ever do is survive; we'll dig a rut so deep that our Mind will convince us that there's no way out. The Ego, on the other hand, will try to convince us that we're better than that, so there will be continuous warfare between these two, until we realize we are More than both of them!

Our dreams would tell us much, if we'd only listen! I should clarify; some dreams get pretty crazy, at least mine do. Crazy as it may sound, we, our Higher Selves, are telling us something important through those crazy dreams, something Beyond! Even though they may seem, especially at the time, to be rather inconsequential, even silly, there is a deeper meaning to them. If only we could easily decipher them & move Beyond, but alas, for the most part, our dreams, sleeping or waking, are relatively difficult to figure out. Some are fairly simple & vivid ( lucid? ), such as premonitory dreams, but even those usually have a deeper meaning attached. As the case may be; I wish you, my readers, the best of luck as you Journey Beyond your Dreams!

Namaste' & Blessed Be, 

Charles Haddon Shank

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

The Core

'Yes, Virginia, there IS an Afterlife!' Okay, so maybe not in the sense that most think of it, but then, everybody has their own unique perception, right?! One person's idea of an 'Afterlife' could be sitting on 'Cloud 9', playing on harps for Eternity ( a bit of a cliche' ), while another's could be a simple as playing 18 holes every day. The term 'Afterlife', especially for the Christian & certain other religious folks, is usually more-or-less synonymous with 'Heaven'. Some believe that, at the End of Time, the Earth will become 'Heaven', while others believe it is either so now, or at least underway. Whatever the case may be, in the view of this blogger; call it 'Heaven', 'the Afterlife', 'Summerland', or what you will, It, whatever It is, is simply a sort of spiritual 'waiting room', a dimension, if you will, where souls/spirits go when they are separated from their physical hosts, or 'avatars', until such 'time' when they reincarnate. Yes, that's a hard pill to swallow, but that is MY personal view & it resonates with my Spirit!

Having just read 'Proof of Heaven' by a neurological doctor ( surgeon, no less ), I can't help but perceive how his experience ( NDE ) was influenced, to whatever extent, by his chosen religion. No, I'm not saying that it was all in his head, nor am I discounting the reality of his, or any other NDE, just that, as he even states several times in his book, in other words, once 'encumbered' ( limited? ) by his physicality ( brain ) again, he found it well-nigh impossible to accurately portray what he experienced. Neither am I saying that ALL of what he portrayed was 'colored' by his religion; there is no doubt in my mind that 'he' experienced what he did, for there IS consciousness apart from our physicality, or humanity. All I'm saying here, is that while much of what he wrote, again, 'resonates with my Spirit', in the telling of his story, the good doctor showed his religious colors, for what that's worth!

'As above, so below'. Besides being chock-full, in its simplicity & complexity ( kinda like, 'it is what it is' ), this statement implies strongly, among other things, that the state of our Higher Being has a direct correlation to that of our Lower Being. Now, I realize too, that this statement itself implies 'separation', but this cannot really be helped, at least, not on  this 'plane', since sadly, many don't acknowledge that they have a Higher & Lower Self!

As we then, humanly speaking, contemplate our own mortality ( whatever our chosen belief system ), it is comforting, to whatever degree, to think that there IS life after death; in other words, that after our biological clock stops ticking, that somehow or other, we will live again, whether it's in another 'form', or in Christian terminology, as a glorified ( ?) human being, inhabiting 'a new heavens & a new earth' in the selfsame ( though 'glorified' ) body. A pleasant dream, no doubt, but a dream nonetheless!

At the very 'core' of our being, we are spirits having a physical experience. You've probably heard something like this before, but it bears repeating. If indeed it is otherwise & we are simply 'Higher Animals' ( on the evolutionary chain ), then why SHOULD we worry about trying to 'do better next time' or waste our time trying to make the world a better place? For that matter, why not just live our lives however the hell we want, since we are 'just' animals & this is all there is?! Thankfully, we are More than 'just' animals: though we have an animalistic nature, we also have a Higher Nature, One that, because of Its interconnectedness with the Divine, allows us to see & therefore live for More!

Dr. Alexander called this 'dimension' in which he experienced the Presence of Divinity 'the Core'. This, in my opinion, is a very fitting name for what most call 'Heaven', for it implies that we are 'Heaven'! Being brought up 'in the nurture & admonition of the Lord', so to speak, I learned, in time, that the Holy Spirit ( ' God' ) lives in our hearts. Now, if that's not 'Heaven', I don't know what is! If you've read any of my posts over the last 10 years ( give or take ) you're probably familiar with the phrase, 'Heaven' is in our hearts'. This is not to say, again, that the doctors 'vision' was all in his head, so to speak, for as he explained in his book; his brain ( at least the necessary cognitive part ) was not functioning at the time. Dr. Alexander DID experience an NDE; for all ( or at least most ) intents & purposes, he was physically ( clinically? ) dead! But, just like Lazarus in the biblical story, his spirit returned to his body & he awoke with New Purpose.

What then, does 'the Afterlife' look like? IS it a waiting room for the Eternal Cycle of, in Christian terms, 'Birth, Death & Resurrection', or in another, 'reincarnation'? Is it simply a place of Eternal Rest where we sing the praises of our Lord & Savior all day long? A 'place' we go to after we die? Of course, WE don't really die, do we?! This biological machine ( some call it our 'avatar' ) will eventually wind down & become wormfood, but who we really are, at the Core of our Being, will never die!

Namaste' & Blessed Be,

Charles Haddon Shank

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Perish the Thought

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Philippians 4:8 ( KJV )

'Think before you speak!' When dealing with the Person, especially the Other Person, this is usually a good idea. Or at least, so it would seem! Usually, in the course of any given day, at least once, we will find ourselves regretting something we've said or done without thinking it through. 'As above, so below'; thinking things through before you speak sounds good enough, but (at least ) two 'problems' should be noted here; one, even if it's not 'appropriate' ( ? ), by not saying how we really feel, we're being dishonest, not only with the 'Other', but with ourselves! Secondly, we have a tendency to over-think any given situation; so often, for much the same reason ( 'it's not appropriate' ), we end up doing or saying what we shouldn't. Either that, or we remain silent & inactive.

The verse above, again, personally speaking, sounds like great advice, right?! If we kept our minds 'on things above', so to speak, rather than 'things on the earth', to follow further instruction from the Christian bible, we would do well, we're told. But, therein lies much of the problem; because we as humans believe in duality, we see things in black & white. This is beautiful, that is not, etc. This is worthy ( we are worthy ), that is not ( they are not ). Don't get me wrong; I'm by no means saying there's no such thing as 'just desserts'  ( call it 'Karma' ), just that with a dualistic mindset comes 'separation'. 'But, there should be separation', some would argue, basing this on passages from the Christian bible, like II Corinthians 6:17. This is probably another matter for another day, but suffice it to say that this passage, indeed most if not all passages like it in the Christian bible are referring to a different people in a land & time far, far removed from our current situation.

Most famously, it was Rene' Descartes who said, 'I think, therefore I am'. If we've learned anything in the pages of this blog, it's that it not only sounds ass-backwards, it's just plain wrong! Thinking is not a result of who we are & it definitely doesn't make us who we are! The overwhelming majority of people in this world seem to think that we are merely human beings with rational minds & the ability ( unlike other animals? ) to think things through before we do or say something we might later regret. This is where Fear enters the picture, but again, 'another matter for another day', perhaps. This is not to say of course, that we needn't exercise care, watching our words, so to speak, but too often, our fear of what others might think prevents us from speaking our mind. Not altogether a bad thing maybe.............................

Getting back to Descartes' statement above, putting the cart before the horse ( ? ), so to speak, although it is more like, 'we ARE, therefore, we think', really, in all actuality, it is ( only ) in our capacity as human beings that we do think. As 'monads', or individual minds, in the Hyperian way of thinking, our thought processes do, in that sense, stem from the fact that we are More than our humanity, our 'avatars', in a manner of speaking. As just a bit of a side-note here; whether you take Morgue's word for it or not, he does make some sense; convoluted as it may be, the idea of 'the One & the Many' is not unique to him. Being unique ( individual ) souls, in a manner of speaking, we are possessed of our own thoughts; in other words, we, in our humanity, do not ( necessarily ) have a 'hive mentality'; we think differently, however similar or dissimilar, than any other human being. No one person out there thinks entirely the same as another.

Not to get too biblical, but the apostle Paul, in I Corinthians 2:16, talks about us, in our humanity ( ? ) having 'the mind of Christ'. As accurate or inaccurate as this translation may be, you can be sure that what the writer speaks of here is not a mind that only thinks pure thoughts, as one would expect of 'the mind of Christ'. No, what the author refers to here is the Oneness with the Source that the above-mentioned 'Morgue' also speaks of. As individual minds, or 'monads', we DO think our own thoughts, separate from the One Mind, or 'the Source'.  However, we may choose, as an integral part of the Source, the Collective Mind, one might note, to simply observe ( without judgement ) those unique, individual thoughts, allowing them to pass freely through our mind.

While we may be, as some have said, 'of like mind', we do not, 'as above, so below', think exactly the same thoughts as any other human being ( even 'monad' ). Although we may be fairly 'like-minded', we will never think the same thoughts as another individual. For example, we may be thinking the same thing, as sometimes happens, but everyone has their own unique 'spin' on it, whatever 'it' may be. On the other hand, we should well note, just because one has 'the mind of Christ', it is not to say that impure or 'unholy' thoughts never enter his or her ( individual ) mind!

Because we are who & what we are, call it 'monadic individuals' or what you will, we DO have thoughts unique to us, as individual human beings; there is no avoiding that, nor should we wish to. I realize that, in some traditions, 'thoughtlessness' is highly spoken of, but it is not that we need to avoid thinking, though sometimes we tend to overthink any given situation, it's that, rather than allowing our thoughts to rule us, to the point where we begin to identify with our thoughts ( for example, 'I'm thinking about this, so I must be a..............' ), we simply observe our thoughts, as one separate, yet not separate from the Source, call it 'the mind of Christ', or what you will.

'Speaking your mind' is not entirely a 'good' thing, nor is it necessarily a 'bad' thing. When one doesn't speak his or her mind, whether out of Fear or what, not only are they being dishonest with the other; they are also cutting themselves short. There is such a thing as 'tact', though; I'm not saying that we shouldn't choose our words ( timing ) carefully, just that we should always be true to ourselves. 'As above, so below'; it is when we identify with our thoughts ( 'I am this', 'I am that' ) that we run into trouble. For most people, it IS easier said than done, not to act ( 'right' or 'wrong' ) on our thoughts, but for those few who manage to disassociate themselves from their thoughts & simply observe them without judgement, like passing clouds above, the result is that we are not spurred to action by our thoughts, but by our Will.

The Will does not stand in opposition to the Ego, as some might suppose, for they stem from two very different sources! The Ego, as we've noted, is attached to our human, or animal nature. In fact of the matter, it is an integral part of our avatar. The Will, on the other hand, gets its strength from a Higher Source, stemming from & rooted in our true nature, as spirit beings having a physical experience. I should clarify; though it often seems that the Ego does oppose the Will & sometimes the Will must oppose the Ego, the Ego, as some also suppose ( we've been here before ) is not necessarily 'evil'. The problem 'crops up' when we allow It to overrule our Will.The Ego enables us, in our human nature, to operate in this physical realm; through It we exercise what we humanly call 'free-will', which, though attended by the Will, is not the same. But, I digress.................

There is nothing 'wrong' with thinking! Sometimes, even the darkest thoughts occur to us, troubling or else relieving our minds. We think, though, whether because of societal ( cultural ) conditioning, or what, that such thoughts are 'bad', or 'evil', but they are simply there. Again, 'it is what it is'. If we just observe those thoughts, allowing them to simply & smoothly pass through our mind, 'no problem': it is when we attach ourselves to these thoughts, allowing them to determine our course of action that we run into problems!

To end on a positive note, do not, as some seem to preach, try to change your way of thinking; 'you think just fine!' Your thoughts are NOT the problem; the free exercise ( I'm NOT referring to 'free-will', here ) of your Will is the problem. Learn to differentiate between your Will, which comes from the Spirit Within & your 'free-will', which originates with the Ego; again, NOT a 'bad' thing. Once we learn to differentiate between these two distinct points, we will be more easily able to simply observe our thoughts, without judgement, as they pass freely through our minds. Without the attachment to our thoughts, which belong to our humanity ( again, NOT 'wrong' or 'evil' ), we instead rely on our Higher Nature to determine our course of action, which is ALWAYS a 'good' thing!

Namaste' &  Blessed Be,
Charles Haddon Shank

Tuesday, July 07, 2020

The Death of the Person

First of all, what is Death, but the cessation of Life? In relation to that, what is Life? In one sense, it depends who you ask. 'What sense is that? one might well ask. 'Well, most people seem to think that biological existence is Life.' An acceptable enough answer, I reckon, but is that really what constitutes Life? One might note that it is a necessary constituent, but then we're right back to 'square one', so to speak. 'Is Life simply biological existence, or is there more to it than that?' If Life is mere biological existence, then yes; it could be rightly said that once a person stops breathing, Life has ceased to exist for that person: therefore, 'Death is the End'!

There are those who believe that Death is only the Beginning. In some sense, the greatest maybe, this is true: Death means the Beginning of something New. Biologically speaking, anyway, it is a Universal Truth that, in order for something, be it plant, animal or human ( animal ) to live, something else, 'as above, so below', must die. Therefore, when something dies, something else experiences new life, whether it's a blade of grass that becomes food for an animal, or whether it's what is usually called a 'dumb animal' offering it's 'Life' so that a more articulate ( human ) animal might live. That really doesn't answer the question though, does it? 'If you claim that Life is More than this Biology, then the burden of proof is on you, right!?' Well, yes & no. It's easy enough to say, 'It it what it is', in an attempt to slip out from beneath that burden, but that IS a pretty 'pat' answer!

Just as there are those, 'as above, so below', who believe that 'Death is only the Beginning'; in a slightly different sense, there are those who know that Death is only the Beginning! One might well ask, at this juncture, 'is there really much difference here, between knowing & believing?' Don't we know what we believe? In essence, if we believe something, doesn't that imply that we know it? 'I mean, what do you take me for, anyway?!' Then again, a Muslim believes certain things about 'God' that a Christian might gasp in horror at, because the Christian 'knows' that 'God' isn't like that. 'Why', you should ask yourself, 'does the Christian 'know' that 'God' isn't like that?' If it's because the Christian's Holy Book says so; don't you think the Muslim believes with the same or even more fervency what their Holy Book says about Who or What 'God' is?

Every culture known to humanity has their own peculiar notions about Who or What 'God' is! While Western religions, Near Eastern religions & even some Far Eastern Religions put a 'personal' spin on 'God'; those 'in the know' know that 'God' is simply the manifestation of our own Divinity. Now, before you consign me to 'Hell' for 'Eternity', let me offer this clarification. When I imply ( strongly ) that we are 'God'; I am by no means saying that we 'created' everything we see, up to & including the Universe ( or Multiverse ) Itself. We are not the Source of All!

Being One with, or a Part of that Source, we are then Divine, just as the Source is. Some call this Source 'God'. As we've noted before in the 'pages' of this blog, even the Christian Bible tells us that we are Gods ( small 'g' or large 'G'; does it really make THAT much of a difference?! ) As we've also noted, the Hebrew word used in both cases is the same. On the other hand, most Science tells us that the Universe & everything in it is made up of pure energy, always moving, like a great 'Wheel in the Sky'. If everything is Energy, where then did that Energy originate? Has It, like most religion's concept of 'God', always been, or did Energy have a Beginning? In our personal experience, something must be set in motion in order for it to maintain that motion, for whatever period of time, even for what might pass for Infinity. However, taking that back to its natural conclusion, that would be akin to saying that the Christian 'God' Himself, the Creator, had a beginning!

Science has told us that all is Energy. While that is 'plain' enough, It does not satisfy our curiosity as to Who or What 'God' is, the One who purportedly put everything in motion. What some call 'God', others call 'Energy'. Again, 'as above, so below', in our personal experience, a thing must be set in motion in order for it to remain in motion for any length of time: however, what if Energy, as some Science says, does not die, but is simply transformed? 'What then?! What if Energy is a veritable 'perpetual motion' machine? One might try to throw a wrench in the works here, saying something like, 'but even perpetual motion machines gotta start somewhere!' True enough; 'in our personal experience, yes, but are we not More than the Person?!

Whether one believes or not that we are spiritual beings having a physical experience, it cannot rationally be denied that there is more to us than what is noticeable on the surface. Most religions teach us that, after the death of the physical body, the 'soul', or spirit continues on for 'Eternity'. Thus, by the overwhelming majority of accounts, we, as the Person, are governed, or motivated by the Soul. Therefore, the Person is not 'Who' we are, so much as the Soul, or Spirit is!

Being Who we are, then, We cannot die! Only the Person dies. When our Person (individual body ) expires, if we identify with that Body ( as most do ) we might rightly say that Person, or individual has died. But those who know, know different. Just because an Individual believes they are the Person does not change the fact that they are More. They are simply blinded to the Fact!

The Death of the Person then, in that sense, if that sense alone, is not the End! It really is the Beginning, the Beginning of a New Person, the Beginning of a New Life, in a manner of speaking. 'But wait', you say,' didn't you imply earlier that Life is More than this Biology?!' Why yes, yes I did!

Namaste' & Blessed Be,
Charles Haddon Shank

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

The Healer

'Joe' was, to outside appearances anyway, your ordinary, average girl-next-door. Born Josaphyna Aryana Smith, she was the only daughter of the deacon of a local community church, a modest little social gathering that boasted around 200 members. Though her upstanding parents had managed to keep it out of the papers, so to speak, Joe had a dirty little secret: at the tender age of 13, she had managed to get herself pregnant. Whether because she knew from her upbringing that abortion was murder, or simply because she was afraid of the shame it would bring upon her parents, Joe found a 'black market' physician who would perform it for her, 'no questions asked', for a modest sum, of course. To his credit, the responsible young man, who was a bit older, somehow came up with the money. The abortionist, however, was not the physician he claimed, so when the deed was done, not only was little 'Joe' not pregnant anymore, unbeknownst to her at the time, she never would be again!

Like a lot of teenage girls, especially those infamous 'PKs', Joe had discovered the 'joy' of sex. Like most, though, she soon found that 'Joy' was a fickle mistress, for without the experience of orgasm through sexual intercourse, the relationship, such as it was, quickly fizzled out. In fact, because of this, Joe earned the nickname 'Potato Chip', for most of the local boys quickly learned that she was, to put it crudely, an 'easy lay', a moniker which became even more prolific when it was discovered that there was no 'danger' of pregnancy.

At first, Joe, along with her multitude of wannabe 'lovers', counted this a boon, but when she tried to 'straighten her act up', at the behest of her parents, who didn't realize she was barren, she found that she was not 'marriage material' to the kind of men her folks approved of. Though she did go through her fair share of suitors, even managing to get as far as engagement once or twice, Joe soon learned that, in most circles, particularly the ones her parents ran in, she was considered 'damaged goods', even 'broken'!

Broken' as she was, as well as being naturally rebellious to her strictly religious upbringing, Joe finally, at the ripe old age of 33, found a man that was willing to spend the rest of his life with her. As 'Luck' would have it though, her Joy was not to last, for a mere two years ( to the day ) after they said their vows to each other, her husband passed away in a freak vehicle turnover. At 37 years old, Joe was still quite a 'looker', so, while finding a 'lover' was a fairly easy task, since she only seemed to attract married men, none of whom were willing to leave their wives for her, she decided that the married life was not for her!

Enter 'John'. 'John was the kind that might be called a 'hurt puppy'! He WAS married, but because of certain unresolved issues in his life prior to this marriage, he was having problems keeping it afloat. John's wife had her own issues to deal with, so rather than listen with understanding to each other's issues, they both had chosen to deal with the other's issues without dealing with their own. In this way, both had become sullen, preferring, it would seem, to focus on solving the problem they saw reflected in their partner, not realizing it was their own reflection they saw!

When Joe came along, John found himself drawn to her, not sexually, so much as by an undeniable spiritual connection, though he had to admit she was still very attractive, physically speaking. As their connection continued to blossom, John's wife Mary, while struggling with her own issues, fought to keep her husband's obvious attraction to Joe at bay. Not wanting to cause further issues, while still wishing to maintain the secure connection she had finally found, Joe decided to pursue a relationship with both wounded parties, to see if she could aid in bringing healing to both!

Considering Joe's prior experiences with the opposite sex, physically speaking, it came as no surprise when she began to find herself attracted to Mary, though not necessarily sexually speaking! In her prior experience, Joe had found that men, for the most part, were lead by the wrong head. This is not to say that every man with whom she had dallied only had one thing on their mind, just that, for the greater part, their decisions were based, to whatever extent, on their 'need' to gratify their own lust. Therefore, when Joe began to cozy up to his wife, in a manner of speaking, John began to notice a subtle change in Mary, all the while realizing that it mirrored the transition he himself was experiencing!

John's main issue with his wife, he realized ( hopefully before it was too late ) was that he saw himself as a problem-solver. This sounds like a good thing, but really, most of the time it only serves to exacerbate the problem. When Mary would come crying to him, either literally or figuratively, John's 'go-to' had always, immediately been to try to fix it. When she would 'rag' on him for something he had supposedly done, or if she was just having a bad day, John would almost always go on the defensive, taking personally what was not so much aimed at him as it was just Mary's way of airing out her emotions, or feelings. One thing that John was learning through his relationship with Joe was to do more listening than talking. He was also learning not to be so quick to judge a book by its cover. Both he & Mary had been brought up similarly to how Joe had been raised, so they both were judgmental, not just of outsiders, but of each other. Learning to know Joe, as they both were, they were slowly realizing that though a person's prior history may have an effect on their future, it does not define who they are!

Joe's blossoming relationship with Mary, on the other hand, was more personally based, whereas with John it was mainly spiritual. Both had become more or less comfortable with Joe being in their lives, but Mary, probably because their friendship had begun in physicality, felt less threatened by Joe's presence than her husband did. Though they both had their moments, as anyone would, Joe's relationship with John was actually deeper because of their spiritual connection. Other than that, they really didn't have much in common, but they both felt an almost un-explainable affinity for each other.

Through all of this, almost mysteriously, John & Mary's failing marriage was beginning to show signs of being rekindled! Neither partner was perfect, don't gt me wrong, but through their relationship with Joe, they were quickly learning how much better ( in fact, they found soon enough that it was the best way ) it was to listen more, while talking less. Furthermore, to listen without judgement, though it was difficult for them both at first, became easier the more they exercised their new-found freedom!

Joe, meanwhile, was reaping the karma she had sown in her earlier life. The sexual 'freedom' she had experienced previously had proven to be detrimental, rather than a 'boon' to her health.While
John & Mary's relationship was rising like a phoenix from the ashes, Joe's bodily presence, having fulfilled its purpose, was fading. From all of her sexual escapades, Joe's body had been slowly but surely wearing down. John & Mary were both rather devastated by this realization, though understandably Mary moreso than John, but knew that her continued attachment to this couple would, in Time prove to be detrimental to their relationship, though it had effectively saved it.

Namaste' & Blessed Be,
Charles Haddon Shank

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Power to Breathe

Venturing out on a limb here, I'm going back to my roots! As most if not all of my readers know, I have a very strong Christian background. Quite a few years ago, before I was aware of the Journey I was on, much less the direction it was taking me, I wrote an article entitled 'The Difference Between Having & Taking'. Even though this article is no longer available for viewing ( probably a good thing ), the main gist of it, as I remember, based on the biblical text of Genesis 1:26-28, was that 'Elohim', or 'God', told 'His' Creation to 'have dominion'. It would seem from the garbled history of humanity that this has largely been interpreted as 'take dominion'. No matter how one interprets this passage, though, it clearly says that they were to exercise what they had been given, not take what they had not!

According to one author, Power, personally speaking anyway, takes three forms; 'power over', 'power with' & 'power from within'. She refers to these three forms in this way, '“power-over,” referring to domination and control; “power-from-within,” meaning personal ability and spiritual integrity; and “power-with,” pertaining to social power or influence among equals'. 'As above, so below'; personally ( individually ) speaking, one may exercise their own power over others, whether it be person, animal, or even plant, but, in the case of another person, only if the other, for whatever reason, allows them to. In the case of most animals, mankind has, for the past many hundreds of thousands of years ( ? ) been able to hold power over them, thanks mostly to their own ingenuity. Nature, though, has a way of evening the odds! One might well note that 'Karma' plays a big role here, as well!

Not knowing any more about the recent news out of Minnesota concerning George Floyd than what the MSM wants us to know; I will give this bit of commentary. No matter what the truth may be about this situation, George Floyd didn't deserve to die! The cop, or cops, that caused his death are guilty of murder ( call it 'manslaughter' if you want )! You may have heard that there was history surrounding the incident & maybe there was, but so what?! one can almost understand the one cop kneeling on his neck ( if THAT'S even totally accurate ), given this 'history', for, like as not, Mr. Floyd, if given an inch, would've taken a mile. I guess we'll never know! Whatever the case may be, George Floyd, by ceding his personal Power to someone else, whether through coercion, deceit or ignorance, lost his life that fateful day.

'The Power is YOURS', to quote an old cartoon! Personally speaking, we are creatures of Power. No, I'm not necessarily talking of physical strength, though that is surely a force to be reckoned with; I'm not even speaking of endurance, mental or physical. The Power that I'm referring to is the Power Within, the Power that we innately hold, as spirit-beings. One might even note that we are Power Itself, being One with the Source of Power, Divine Energy. This Power, of course, is not physical or mental strength, although it often manifests in those ways. Beyond the physical attributes or even the mind itself is our spirit/soul, where our personal Journey begins. It is here that Power resides. The Power to Choose is in our mind, but it really goes back, or up/in, even further than that, though we may or may not be aware of it. Our choices, when we are truly Aware, reflect that awareness. However, when we are driven by the Ego/Mind, our choices are most often reflective of our egocentric mindset.Though this is not always the case, this is how we end up with cases like that of George Floyd in Minnesota!

The Ego, as we've discussed in previous posts, is neither good nor bad; 'it just IS'! An integral & necessary part of our humanity, the Ego is that which allows us to function in this Life. With the personal Ego, we would not be able to choose for ourselves. This personal ability to choose, though, is where the problem manifests! We can choose to exercise our Power over other people, animals or plants, or we can choose to exercise that Power alongside of those others. We can live symbiotically with all life, or we can 'die by the sword'! When we decide to use our Power carelessly, or even evilly, that Power inevitably turns back on us & 'bites us in the ass', in a manner of speaking. However, when we live as Nature intended, in harmony with ALL Creation, Life not only flows much better, but we might even enjoy a longer Time in this physical realm!

Inevitably, this biology will, at some point, go the way of all things in the Great Circle of Life! Certain people would probably tell you differently, but 'this old body wasn't made to last forever'! Through our choices, though, or at least as far as it is up to us, we can either shorten or lengthen our Time in this Iteration. It is not totally up to us of course, but we can influence others in their personal choices, either negatively by exercising  Power over them, or in a positive way, by allowing them to exercise their personal power with, or alongside us. One cannot exercise Power over other unless one first takes their Power!

This is not to say, of course, that such a person no longer has any Power; they just don't realize, most of them, that their Power is innate, it goes Beyond the Person! The simple realization of this Power is, well, powerful. Understanding that we are More than the Person & so not allowing ourselves to be controlled by the Person; we can better enjoy Life with our Ego not driving, or pushing us to use our Power over others. Rather, we will be free to use our Power to complement the personal Power of others. Better still; Life flows better when we live it symbiotically, instead of trying to control what is beyond our control!

Namaste' & Blessed Be,
Charles Haddon Shank