Saturday, July 22, 2017

Believing is Seeing

When my spiritual journey opened up to me I realized that I had to give up some self-imposed interferences to enjoy the freedom of the WAY. I experienced so much pressure at work, and there was do much anger, fear and suppressed sexuality in me that I used pornography to let of some steam. Afterwards I sent myself on a guilt trip and promised to never do it again, only to find that the same cycle started during the next full moon night.

Then something unexpected happened. During a brief illness my son drew me a picture - something he rarely does - with the note "Get well, Papa" on it. Drawing doesn't come easily to him and it was hard to figure out what it was all about. Looking at it for a while, I saw a Christ figure blessing a child. I doubt that was what he had in mind when he drew it, but that was the image I saw that day anyway. My son was in pre-school then and he was pretty advanced in that he could already write sentences. Yet, one of the P in Papa was turned upside down. Given that the drawn picture was hard to make out, and intrigued by the upside down drawn P, I turned the picture around. The most amazing image appeared, the Christ figure turned into a phallus symbol and the child looked like a naked man in submission. It was the most amazing subconscious appeal to end the war of good and evil in me.

I have left the struggle of good and evil behind me a while ago. In the end I didn't have to appeal to the power of Christ but by simply realizing what these suppressed sexual images stand for and by doing something about it. So in a sense I managed to transcend the entire "Christ versus sin" theme and believe that everyone can do it. The beauty of a spiritual path is that we have the ability to see love, Christ and the Holy Ghost every step of the WAY. We don't need to appeal to a higher spiritual authority, we just see GOD's maya as is and end up making the choices.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Outgrowing Jealousy

I didn't notice that your grass is greener; I was too busy working on my own yard.

He was decent looking, and he was aggressive when it came to women. In the locker room I saw a body that made me quite jealous, but still, I knew that I was better looking. He picked up the girls that I found attractive too, but was then only in brief relationships. He broke many young hearts. 

Thomas and I were classmates in high school, and for his womanizing habits I really disliked him. He certainly was smooth while I was a bit shy. But then, the idea that you go out with a girl for a few weeks and then dump her afterwards struck me as insane. When I am in a relationship, I want it to last.

We had a high school reunion when I was in college and I brought my girlfriend at that time along. Of course, Thomas spent an hour talking to her but I didn't care. He had already bloomed while I was just getting ready for life. Looking back, I find this episode a superb example demonstrating that when we always focus on what truly matters to us, jealousy doesn't come up.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

The Day I was Born Again

Can you imagine what it means to have no cares, no worries, no anxieties, but merely to be perfectly calm and quiet all the time? In this redeeming instant lies Heaven. It is only by finding your FUNCTION and fulfilling IT that you can escape from littleness. Be humble before HIM and yet great in HIM. And value no plan of the ego before the PLAN of GOD.

All separation vanishes as holiness is shared. For holiness is power, and by sharing it, it gains in strengths. Our task is but to continue as fast as possible the necessary process of looking straight at all the interference and seeing it exactly as it is. In the holy INSTANT, the condition of love is met, for minds are joined without the body's interference, and where there is communication, there is peace.

This is the weekend in which a new year will be born from the time of the CHRIST. I have perfect faith in you to do all you would accomplish. Nothing will be lacking, and you will make complete and not destroy. So will the year begin in joy and freedom. There is much to do, and we have been long delayed. Accept the holy INSTANT as the year is born and take your place, so long unfulfilled, in the Great Awakening.
(A Course in Miracles, excerpts from Chapter 15; my capitalizations)

I went with my 12 year old son to the dentist the other day. His dentist's daughter is a class mate at his school so I asked him as we left the building whether he likes her. He smiled and replied, "she is ok". Then he added, ''if anything, the girls are even worse than the boys at our school; when they are in groups they become unbearable. Sometimes I think that I am the only sane person at that entire school!" I didn't say anything, but thought to myself that he is just like me. It was then when I understood what my true FUNCTION is, simply to be the beacon of light, the safety net, and the common sense for all the people who are in my life. I don't have anything to do to perform this role, mind you, being calm and sane is somehow my birthright.

For the reader who is left wondering why the Course in Miracles quote seemed relevant on this particular summer day; this weekend marks the New Moon in Leo, my birth month.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Pain of Letting Go

He is a smart man with great investment instincts, and he is also quite a character. Unfortunately he was hired for a job that fell out of favor with the higher powers in charge. So despite his superb credentials, as the years went by, it became clear that his stars were fading. He should have been promoted but he never was. His office got downsized after a move. We worked together on a strategy of how to improve his impact but it was of no avail. So at one point he started applying for a new job somewhere else and left our firm just in time before the pink slip would have arrived in the mail.

A year later we met for lunch and despite the fact that he had so much positive stuff to talk about, he kept going back to bitching about the colleagues who abused him at that time. Then, I was still in the 'positive thinking' mindset so I was naturally irritated by his tirade and decided not to meet him for lunch again. But after another year we bumped into each other on the street and we agreed to meet again for lunch. This time around I was smarter and I talked to him about soccer, our children and financial markets more generally. Needless to say, it was a much more pleasant experience. 

After the meal he wanted to walk me back even though the lunch place was right next door to his work-place. I tried to persuade him not to given that it was raining as well, but he insisted. So we walked back together and took cover from the rain somewhere near-by. He opened up about all the wounds that he was still carrying around and got more and more agitated and as he was waving his fist towards our building, I suddenly understood that this was all part of the letting go process. This time around I let him vent without interfering. I was simply an emotional shock absorber. When he was done with his tirade we hugged and went our different ways. The rain had fizzled by then, and I hope, so had his pain.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Courage in the Line of Fire

Courage is when you are shaking in your boots and saddle up anyway(John Wayne)

I probably know a thing or two about therapy. I certainly know what it means to have the carpet pulled beneath your legs leaving you falling into a bottomless pit. In my job as a financial strategist I have to step up when markets go against me, and one of these prior episodes must have cut me to the bone.These days I am shaking in my boots much more often than I used to. Now when I am caught on the wrong side of the trade I experience fear and depression way more intensely than I have ever before.  I show symptoms that others would probably describe as Post-Traumatic-Stress-Symptom.

Yet, thus far at least, I am not shell-shocked in the line of fire. My co-author Su Zhen tells me that I am stupid for continuing in my profession. She might be right but I still feel I have a mission to complete no matter what the psychological costs end up being. Like John Wayne did in his movies, I feel energized when the bullets are flying, figuratively speaking of course. The WAY guilds me through this ordeal and I feel at home doing what I am doing.

The WAY sends me through therapy. When the ego fights for survival the observer learns priceless lessons. We shouldn't be stubborn, but we shouldn't shy away from life's problems either. So when you find yourself shaking with fears, chances are you too should saddle up and ride right into the eye of the storm.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Fun along the WAY

The first gulp from the glass of natural science will turn you into an atheist, but at the bottom of the glass GOD is waiting for you. (Werner Heisenberg)

I was returning to my office from lunch break today and had to wait at a red light. I thought I would have a little fun looking a license plates for any spiritual messages and the typical affirmations were passing by. Suddenly a car showed up with a license plate carrying the letters MARION. "Odd", I thought to myself. "Marion works in London and to my recollection I have no joint projects coming up." I crossed the street and was just about to enter the building when I felt a vibration from my mobile phone. It was a calendar update. You can imagine my surprise when I saw that Marion is planning a trip over to Boston and put herself onto my calendar.

Serendipities like that are really little energy boosts, nods from the WAY that we are connected. I wrote my first book, "The Magnificent Experiment" because of them. Occurrences like these, especially when they happen nearly fairly, just wouldn't fit in my scientifically trained mind. Then, of course, came the period when I wanted to profit from them. Investment calls, lottery ticket purchases, special human interactions, etc. Well, nearly a decade has passed from my first book and I have in the meantime distanced myself from that stuff. I want to be connected to the WAY, every step, but without any agenda of my own. I am here to serve, you, my mission and GOD.

Yet, as this anecdote shows light workers have their own special payment. We don't take life that seriously anymore. We have fun along the WAY.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Distorted Male Body Perceptions

Whether we perceive our body as 'less than' or 'more than' perfect, the reality is, the ego can have a field day with either perception. (Dennis Jones)

I remember an interview with a black student from Brown University in which he complained that he was stereo-typed all through his college years. As a 'well-endowed black guy' he got lots of sexual attention, yet he didn't feel appreciated as the person he was. He said he felt like a cliche! Well, there probably was some truth to that, but there might also have been some stereotyping in his brain, merely assuming that women thought of him that way. Did he truly always know what the woman he was climbing in bed with perceived and experienced at that time?

Then there was the other story of a Jamaican English teacher in Japan who drooled over exactly the same problem statement. In 'Black Passenger, Yellow Cab', he told his story that as a black foreigner, and well-endowed on top of it, he was an attractive target of the sexually quite open Japanese women. He felt that he had his hands in the cookie jar for years, but then he also complained about being depressed. The book hinted that the problem was his low income, but the reader was left wondering whether his promiscuous life-style had something to do with it. He lived the stereotype of the well-endowed black guy running after petite Japanese women, yet perhaps all his soul was longing for was to find his true love instead.

The experience of physical male abundance is the statistical outlier. More guys complain about the opposite problem, the fear of having too little to offer in bed. The compensation strategies might be more or less obvious, body-building, a big car or a big pay-check. But then, again, the perceived problem often just lies in the head. It takes merely one woman to tell them that they are perfect as they are, and the struggle should in theory be solved. Unfortunately it takes a lot of convincing though, to silence a fearful and suspicious mind.

The problem statement is always the mind, period. Stereotyping of all kind is a mind exercise. It is about thinking about the average, about classifying and about judging. The solution is the awareness that the mind will always be restless no matter what the subject. Of course, it also helps not to fall for the stereotyping trap. Insight can occasionally silence the mind, but mostly the mind only get silenced when the heart takes over. When we see a guy in a suit, when we see a blue color guy, or a rock musician, actual experiences, biases, and assumptions all together mingle in some distorted perception of life as is. Yet, when we talk to each other, when we truly listen; when we fall in love with the person we are with, and the situation we are in, that's when the mind gets silenced and the stereotyping disappears.

When you love someone you will do whatever it takes to join the partner on her level, and will override all your priors and expectations.