Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Kenneth Wapnick RIP

One of A Course In Miracles' best and most famous teachers, and one who was busy until the very end, Kenneth Wapnick, has passed beyond this incarnation on December 27.
He was unsurpassed in his dedication, in his understanding of the Course, and without mortal competition in his ability to teach.

We wish him all the blessings he deserve and will no doubt get.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Doubt is good (updated)

Doubt 'til thou canst doubt no more...doubt is thought and thought is life. Systems which end doubt are devices for drugging thought.
-- Albert Guerard

You will notice that the school system, failing at teaching students to think, goes for rote learning of "facts", and that no doubt is permitted about those "facts".

As I progressed spiritually, there was a long period where I suffered more and more Doubt. I thought it was a character flaw. And indeed it is unpleasant and it is seen as a weakness. (The politician who shows doubt will get nowhere fast.) But it is a big stretch of the Path forward.


Frank said...
Well, there is a quote from the late Danish astrophysicist which goes something like this: 
"Join those who seek the truth but be more cautious with those who claim to have found it."
A little pearl of wisdom which applies equally well to science and spiritual matters.

Being cautious about that is good advice.

One should however not dismiss the idea that somebody may *actually* find the truth. That would imply that no truth exists. But if there's an organization handling this Truth, and they charge money and try to direct your life, that's a danger sign.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Be like water

I found a page called The Simple Tao. I like these tenets a lot. (The last three makes it all a bit too much Real.)

  • Tao
    "the way", "the path". it is often represented by water because water always seeks the path of least resistance, yet is strong enough to demolish even stone when no other recourse is available. everything below flows from this.
  1. Make your goal effortless action
    avoid unnecessary action or action that is not spontaneous.
  2. Treasure simplicity
    eliminate whatever is unnecessary and artificial and appreciate the simple and the apparently ordinary.
  3. Cultivate stillness
    only stillness will clear muddy waters and enable you to see the truth.
  4. Be patient
    can you remain unmoving until the right action arises?
  5. Be gentle
    love peace and restraint and avoid all unnecessary violence. "do not regard weapons as lovely things. for to think them lovely means to delight in them, and to delight in them means to delight in the slaughter of men."
  6. See beauty
    in the mundane and the normal. Apreciate the beauty around you and in yourself.
  7. Be true
    dedicate your life only to that which you find beautiful or fascinating, and thus be true to yourself.


Re: "only stillness will clear muddy waters and enable you to see the truth. "

... This is something I have come to intuitively in recent years.

Many years ago a friend and I was interviewing a photographer on the radio. He shot cityscapes at night. We asked, why at night? He said that when the city is quiet, you can see deeper into it, like into water when its surface is calm. Both of us was so stunned by the aptness of this that we couldn't think of a new question for many seconds of Dead Air.

It's funny actually, I often have a great craving for action. But more and more often,  I also find that I have a craving  for stillness. There's an odd power and depth...


Friday, November 1, 2013

Enjoy the water remember the river

I love the iPad (I swear there's more to it than meets the eye, it's like I can feel part of the future impact of this hand-held communications medium), and I've just ordered the new gen-5 "iPad Air" (smaller, lighter, yet faster). As I do traditionally (since early iPods), I had my email address (on gmail I'm eolake) engraved on it. And I had another line to fill.
It would be nice if it would inspire a finder to return it. But it should be a bit more than that.
I remembered an old saying, apparently Chinese: "When drinking the water, remember the river". I tried, but of course there was not space enough. So I shortened and shortened, and it turned out that I couldn't even have the comma, but there was just space for:

 Enjoy the water remember the river 

I actually really liked that. I think it has a poetic simplicity, but still says it.

It's also one of the wisest sayings I know. It can be employed on a practical level: if you enjoyed your meal, thank your cook. If you enjoyed having food and shelter when growing up, think of your parents. And so on.

But also on the metaphysical level:

Think of Source

I think it's one of the most basic takeaways from The Course and other teachings, is that Source is everything (literally), and the more we can have attention and desire for Source, instead of this apparent World and its details, the happier we will be.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

People do make it

The path can seem long and hard, sometimes you can wonder if anybody really makes it to the end. So it’s good to hear of people who make it. I have a friend in New York, he’s been an enthusiastic friend for years. And he has often been in the worst trouble.
Today he wrote this to me.

I had started on wanting only God a few years back; what is very recent is my "seeing" that there's no "me," only God.  Man, what a  blast!  It's like while I'm doing it, there's really no "self," other than Him!  I feel no pain - hardly any physical sensations whatsoever - my mind slows down to an almost total stillness, and the peace, joy, gladness, and sense of well-being are enormous, that's something that in my over 41 years on the path, I had had only glances of!  The beauty of it is that I can extend that to almost all of my complete day now.  I am, as a result, much more tolerant, loving, forgiving, etc.  It's truly amazing!  (And most humbling!)  (And to think that this could have always been mine!)

Love, Angelo

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Politeness is healing

There are ways of treating others in which ONLY consistent courtesy, even in very little things, is offered. This is a very healing habit to acquire.
- ACIM Urtext, unpublished (page 71)

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Gary Renard returns

The eagerly awaited third book from Gary Renard is here: Love Has Forgotten No One.

While the how-to-get-home stuff is the meat, I admit I'm looking forward to the hinted-at trips between lives and maybe even on other planets.
Anyway, I've read a bit so far, and it has already given me some deep things to think about. For example:

Many people focus too much on the Illusion. That leaves them feeling empty and depressed. You should focuse more on Reality (Source/God). 

Gary's books, especially The Disappearance of The Universe, have shaken my world. I guess we can't know ultimate truth until we are ultimate beings, but that book rang deeper with truth than anything I'd read for over twenty years.

Friday, August 16, 2013

New McKenna book

Surprise! I, like Jed McKenna himself, thought he was Done after his brilliant "Enlightenment" trilogy. But behold, there's a new book out, Theory Of Everything.

I'd say it's simpler than the others, but worthwhile reading.
Here's a quote:

"This is another way of expressing the awakening process, and the decisive question is, do you hate false-self more than you fear no-self?" - Jed McKenna

Sunday, August 11, 2013

I won't hear it!!

The truth that makes men free is for the most part the truth which men prefer not to hear.
-- Herbert Agar

Rarely was a better truth stated.

Friday, July 19, 2013

In relation to man you progress by your actions. In relation to God and yourself, you progress by your thoughts. 
-  Eolake Stobblehouse

The joy of beauty is the joy of life.
- Eolake Stobblehouse

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

God and hate?

"God Almighty hates a quitter."
 -- Gen. Samuel Fessenden, at the Republican National Convention, 1896.

It always amazes me to think of people who think they have an Almighty God who hates some people. That must be a truly, truly scary world to live in. 

Anyway, if he actually is almighty, why would he hate anybody or anything? Can't he afford better?

Steve F said...
Or that God would hate one of his/her creations?

Yes, a very good point. Seen that way, it's truly preposterous.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Don't do anything with doubt

If you choose to do anything, do it with 100% intention. 

You may have fear, but that doesn't matter. It is not the fear which hurts you or makes things go wrong, it is the doubt. It is the back-off from doing it fully.

People engaged in dangerous sports like jumping over canions on a motorcycle, or hacking a big brick in half with a bare hand, know this. They need to have 100% pure intention in the moment, otherwise it may go wrong.

Have you noticed that doctors and nurses who work with very sick and infectious people, almost never get sick themselves? It's the same thing, it's because they knew the danger, and they chose to go in anyway, they do it with purity.

The same thing applies to the spiritual path. Per definition it's the most difficult thing you can do, because you have to confront everything in the mind which makes anything else difficult. So if you do it half-heartedly, you double your troubles. Instead do it full speed ahead, focused only on the goal, Source.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Quotes etc.

Variety of mere nothings gives more pleasure than uniformity of something.
-- Jean Paul Richter

Funny, according to ACIM, the one above is exactly wrong. If taken in a metaphysical way, of course.


I take it to be a principle rule of life, not to be too much addicted to any one thing.
 -- Terrance


Article on good people and "bad people"

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

On being married, and prioritising one's life

“He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: but he that is married careth for the things of the world, how he may please his wife.”
- 1 Corinthians 7:32

Innit so? It is the very rare spouse who will not expect him/her, the relationship, and the family to be the most important things in your life. Way, way the most important things.
And it's so ingrained in this world. People always say it in interviews: "the most important thing in my life is my family". I remember when I heard a A-list actor say it some years ago, I thought: "oh yeah? Well, you're a multi-millionaire, so how come you keep making all those movies instead of just staying home with your family?"

But the fact of course is that having a family is a great responsibility, and very, very few of us has the power and resources to have something else which is as important, or more. So I think that people who have such a thing, whether it be art, religion, spirituality, rock collecting, whatnot, should consider whether to start a family or even a relationship is the smartest thing to do? If it's really necessary? Or just a "supposed-to-do" which is build into our collective mind?

I've lost count of the number of very talented artists I know who got into a serious relationship or got married or kids, and after that, their creative output just dropped to near zero. So I think that one should consider that seriously.

I know, it's not politically correct to say this. Because contributing to the gene pool and making little workers for the factories of the future is the ego's most holy goal and obligation! But I think that spirituality (in the broadest sense) is way more important than that, by definition. What is higher or more important than our Source/God?

Friday, June 7, 2013

On the ethics of using force

True power consists in the mastery of oneself.
-- Loren Eiseley

I think there's a lot of truth in this.
And that's why I'm still a bit shocked, having read the Steve Jobs biography, about how consistently and intensely rude the man was. He clearly had a lot of power, but when he completely fails to control his own temper and continues to do it, to me that is a failing of monumental size.

He clearly did not consider it important. But to me, verbal abuse can be as damaging as physical abuse. And doing it to adults is not all that different from doing it to a child. And I really doubt that Steve would have tolerated anybody whipping a child. There's a difference in scale, is all.
There can be the rare occurrence where harsh words or even violence is necessary, if the receiver really don't understand proper communication (perhaps temporarily), and/or there's an emergency. But these situations are very rare for us living in civilized countries.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

No epidural

"You know that they say: there's no epidural during a spiritual rebirth!" 
-- Dharma and Greg

This is funny, but golddurnit, it's true too. My spiritual rebirth has been taking years so far, and bless me if I haven't sometimes wanted an anesthetic as bad as anything ever.

The Vitalist Manifesto

Vitalist Manifesto

Art is for us life, and life is art. In our art we seek to express life and create life.

We believe in the constructive qualities of art, and in the creation of more life. We believe in life, joy, and beauty. We believe in the attainment of higher states for man, and in the participation of art in this process.

Nothing in life is alien to us. We have seen life from bottom to top and from East to West, we know life. We know pain and joy. We know happiness and despair. We know wisdom and stupidity. We know all of life, and all of life is dear to us. Even troubles are a part of life, and must be faced if they are to keep their place in the big picture.

For how dear all of life is to us, some things take precedence. These are the things which embodies most life, the things which create the most life. These things are Joy, Beauty, and Warmth. They are the core of life and the start of life. They are the source of greatness.

Joy, Beauty, and Warmth reach out to others. They do not know any difference between big and small, and they seek to help all. Nobody seeks in vain when these are near. Joy, beauty and warmth come from the center of the soul and are the choice of the soul. Joy, beauty and warmth are our destiny and future.

We seek in our art to reach deep into the well of the Universe and bring to light the secrets which we know are there. We seek the highest Spirit, and we wish to partake in the universal creating.

We fear nothing, and we stop for nothing, for we have felt the wind of freedom on our faces, and we follow its call like its true children.

Eolake Stobblehouse
Copenhagen, 1992

Below is the original Danish version, which I wrote while working in a group of visual artists in the early nineties.

Vitalistisk Manifest

Kunsten er for os livet, og livet kunsten. Vi søger i vor kunst at udtrykke livet og at skabe livet.

Vi tror på kunstens godgørende virkning, og på skabelsen af mere liv. Vi tror på livet, glæden og skønheden. Vi tror på opnåelsen af højere niveauer for menneskeheden, og på kunstens deltagelse i denne process.

Intet i livet er os fremmed. Vi har set livet fra bunden til toppen, og fra øst til vest; vi kender livet. Vi kender smerten og glæden. Vi kender lykken og ulykken. Vi kender visdom og dumhed. Vi kender livet, og hele livet er os kært. Selv sorger er en del af livet, og må ses i øjnene, hvis de skal beholde deres plads i det store perspektiv.

For hvor kært hele livet os end er, er visse ting dog vigtigere end andre. Disse ting er dem, som indeholder mest liv, de ting, som skaber mest liv. Disse ting er glæden, skønheden og varmen. De er kernen i livet og kimen til livet. De er kilden til storhed.

Glæden, skønheden og varmen rækker hænderne ud og søger andre. De kender ikke forskel på stort og småt, og forsøger at hjælpe alt. Aldrig søger nogen forgæves, når de er i nærheden. Glæden, skønheden og varmen kommer fra sjælens centrum og er sjælens valg. Glæden, varmen og skønheden er vor skæbne og vor fremtid.

Vi søger i vor kunst at række dybt i universets brønd og fremdrage de hemmeligheder, vi ved findes der. Vi søger den højeste ånd, og vi ønsker at tage del i den universelle skaben.

Vi frygter intet, og vi stopper ikke, for vi har mærket frihedens vind på vort ansigt, og vi følger dens kalden som dens sande børn.

Eolake Stobblehouse
København 1992

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Calm and happy does it

He who is of a calm and happy nature will hardly feel the pressure of age, but to him who is of an opposite disposition, youth and age are equally a burden.
- Plato

Choose well: Your choice is brief and yet endless.
- Ella Winter

Friday, May 10, 2013

Infinite variety

There are as many kinds of loves as there are flowers: everlastings that never wither; speedwells that wait for the wind to fan them out of life; blood-red mountain-lillies that put their voluptuous sweetness out for one day, and lie in the dust at night. There is no one flower has the charm of all.

-- Ralph Iron

Tuesday, April 30, 2013


I think this Hamster Story puts some perspective on Self-improvement. It's pretty funny too.

The author sent it to me because, as he said, I am "a thinking man".
Yes, I guess I am. But more and more it looks to be that being a "thinking man" is like being The World's Fastest Rock.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Sartre and freedom

Whatever the circle of hell in which we live, I think we are free to break out of it. And if people do not break out, they stay there of their own free will. 
— Jean-Paul Sartre

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Go past limits

All things are to be examined and called into question. There are no limits set on thought.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Blind belief

With most men, unbelief in one thing springs from blind belief in another. 
-- Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

Sunday, March 3, 2013

And others?

"Tis not all to be happy, you also need to know that the others are unhappy."
-- Jules Renard

A good insight into the Ego (Self).

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Not friction

I would not waste my life in friction when it could be turned into momentum.
- Frances Willard

This is one of my favorite quotes. If one tends to avoid conflicts, it is easy to think that it's because one is a coward. Because, particularly for males, one is measured by ego-minded minds by how strong and courageous one is, or even measured "by one's enemies", as if having enemies is some sort of badge of honor!

In short, conflict is not only at the core of what holds us down spiritually, it is simply a waste of valuable energy and time.
I would say that areas of life where a lot of conflict is inevitable, like politics, are areas where the advanced mind is probably wasting his time.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Year of the Snake

This is the year of the Snake. (Comes every 12 years in the Chinese calendar.)
Like a deep river, Snake people are usually placid on the surface, but their thoughts and emotions run very deep.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A row of piggy banks

[This is a continuation of the Iron Piggy Bank post.]

One can sometimes forget things which are important, just because they are not visible to the eye or to others.
So I think it might help to view one's investments of time an energy as being divided into different piggy banks:

  1. Money
  2. Family
  3. Status
  4. Health
And so on. Make as many as you like, and then later evaluate importance of each, more than once. Importance may shift a lot.
I think a very overlooked piggy bank is the one with the little brass label with says:

One of the problems, apart from invisibility, of this one is that there are no solid instructions on how to deposit into it! Or even what one is depositing.
Everybody has different instructions. Some believe if you go to church regularly, you'll be saved. Some believe that if you meditate regularly, that's it. Some believe that harmony with nature is essential for spirit.

I guess I can't make definite recommendations, I think that what is important will vary, not only from person to person, but from time to time. For example, at some time Art was the most central aspect of my spiritual development, and I do believe it moved me far. Later, a certain religious philosophy was hugely important to me, and though I've now left it, I think that probably it was just what I needed at that point, I think it gave me a lot of strength I needed, strength which I started using later when beginning to venture beyond the needs of Self and humanity.

Probably the important part is to never stop looking. Observe and search. If you are open to your intuition, guidance from above will slip in and you will feel what is important right now for your spiritual path.

This can take a lot of courage. As a prime example of that, it can be very difficult to step beyond one's earlier training, whether religious or otherwise, particularly when that training was gained in a strong group or family setting where one felt much support. It may feel like treason to move on, or one may simply be blind to the mere possibility of it.

But it is essential to keep moving forward, keep being willing to question one's beliefs, even the deepest ones, and to keep investing in the spirit piggy every day, even if it's just a penny sometimes.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Cosmic Consciousness

I recommend the book Cosmic Consciousness by Richard Bucke.
(Public domain versions of the book, files on the left.)

It is over 110 years old, published in 1901! And yet it is clearly talking about awakening/enlightenment.
It is written in pretty academic language, and perhaps not the easiest book in the world to read, but it does have some wonderful insights which I have not come across before. One of them is the delineation of the great stages of the growing consciousness of the Universe, something like:

  1. Pure matter/energy, no consciousness, only existence. 
  2. Organic life at low level. Hardly any consciousness, but living matter. 
  3. Life with consciousness, bigger animals. 
  4. Life with consciousness and intelligence, and self-consciousness. Man. 
  5. Cosmic consciousness. The next step. 
The roots of the tree of life being deep sunk in the organic world, its trunk is made up as follows: Beginning at the earth level we have first of all the lowest forms of life unconscious and insensate. These in their turn give birth to forms endowed with sensation and later to forms endowed with Simple Consciousness. From the last, when the right time comes, springs self consciousness and (as already said) in direct ascent from that Cosmic Consciousness.

I love high perspectives like this. It is so rarely attempted.
Bucke also tells about his own Cosmic Light experience, and goes through an interesting list of famous people who awakened, and gives his best evidence as to what points to them being enlightened.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Stirring up guilt

Why does sexuality everywhere create such extreme, irrational reactions, often hostile?

I think that sexuality is a very powerful act of communication and communion, and that the strongest joinings/communications are also those which most powerfully stirs up the primeval guilt.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Blog as ebook

You can now get a collection of post from this blog as an ebook.
(Choose .mobi for Kindles and ePub for other readers.)
Tell me how you like it. I find the formatting nice and clean. (And the links still work.)

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

End of Sacrifice

If you like A Course In Miracles, go buy Gene Bogart's CD The End of Sacrifice, a pro production of a part of the Text. Gene is perfect for it.