“WHAT IF THERE WAS SUDDENLY THE MOST BEAUTIFUL GANESHA ONLINE SHOP?!”
by Brigitte Saugstad: https://goldenganeshart.com
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“Every age has its greatest discovery. The greatest of all is inside of us.”
there’s nothing quite like a Direct Connection (and always free for the taking:-)
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“Go beyond time”
Edward Saugstad on homestead upgrades Don Saugstad on homestead upgrades Linda Saugstad on “Happy Springtime 2019!… Don Saugstad on “Happy Springtime 2019!… Edward Saugstad on 40 Year Challenge Linda Saugstad on 40 Year Challenge Doina Mira Dascalu on 40 Year Challenge Don Saugstad on I Left My Heart In the Centre… Don Saugstad on 2019: the year of Inner P… Diana Rothenberg on Neil Young, Van Morrison, thou…
“the Force use you should”
“the Great Story is just beginning, Mr. Frodo”
Me at Twitter …
speak ‘friend’, and enter
no ghosts in my brain, thanks anyway!
Category Archives: people
Here in the twenty-first century, moving amongst us are personages of past renown marked now not by outstanding appearance or popular appreciation, but by the inner treasures they radiate: universal benevolence and the germinating power of enlightenment.
A Sunrise approaches that will reveal all the sublime glory of life — not on any media display, but in the hearts of human beings.
Look within. That precious hour is upon us.
“We are indeed larvae, eating our way through Earth’s resources in a mindless, caterpillar fashion, but I believe that the imago is already beginning to stir within. When the ‘climate’ is right, it will break out not as some sort of super computer but as an organic being [collective consciousness] that will embody all of the Supernature and look back on technology as a childhood toy.”
Everything we’ve generally accepted about human beings is quickly changing. As soon as we discover that we are much larger and more precious than our familiar shells, all the Game rules change. Our limited perception is expanding out into beautiful reality. This is what it’s all been leading up to.
More about the mysterious, enlightening ‘cool breeze’ appearing in our modern culture, and forgiveness that enables ‘thoughtless awareness’:
Sarayu = Wind: The name is the feminine derivative of the Sanskrit root सर् sar “to flow”; as a masculine stem, saráyu- means “air, wind”, i.e. “that which is streaming”.
“Wishing you and yours a great, memorable Christmas time!”
lots of love, Ed
“I discovered now why I’ve always been so easily moved to tears, witnessing human emotions in songs and movies:
I catch a glimpse of all the diverse human beings,
like beloved children of a common Mother,
and how universally sweet they can sometimes be,
struggling through life’s hardships.”
“Nowhere in the world is presented a government of so much liberty and equality. To the humblest and poorest amongst us are held out the highest privileges and positions. The present moment finds me at the White House, yet there is as good a chance for your children as there was for my father’s.”
—Abraham Lincoln, 31 August 1864
I’ve been following, via social networks, an unprecedented awakening in America for the past few months. (Anyone who relies on corporate media for their news will, of course, have been missing it)
It feels like plugging one’s soul into a current, and being amazed at the intensity of the electric enthusiasm. It seems that sensitive, honest, common-sense people — millions of them — lived their daily lives despairing at the corruption and greed that has infiltrated the ruling class of their great land, the land of the people, land of the free. And then comes along a sincere leader who has spent his life tirelessly fighting for the wellbeing of the citizens, and they propel him to national (and international!) significance with their heartfelt support. Suddenly, all those worthy citizens find themselves up on the stage of historic change together, rising swiftly higher towards the great halls of power, elated by the transparency of their collective success that promises to benefit all … except for those who abused their authority at the cost of the people.
Everywhere, in these times of universal communication and global family chumminess among diverse women and men, girls and boys, like you and me, life on Earth is becoming an open book for everyone to read. The old darkness of mass-manipulation and ignorance is fading fast in the light of understanding and, yes, love.
I’m a Canadian living in Austria, but I am deeply moved by the hope that’s swelling like an ocean tide over in the USA. It is bound to send benevolent ripples out around the planet for generations to come.
… still waiting for the collective state of enlightenment and benevolence to manifest all over the world (that’s increasing, but doesn’t show up often in the mainstream media)
Here’s a scary, heavy-handed suppression by local authorities that I came away from unharmed, thirty-six years ago:
(from the University of British Columbia newspaper)
“Yes, there are many who would shape the world according to their own limited conception of morality and justice. And so, as for you my friend: into what sterile mold would you have us fit?”
—Ed Saugstad, September 1980
I’m considering applying for the job of playing James Bond in the upcoming movies. What do you think my chances are of being accepted for the position? Too old? Too tall? Too non-violent? Too silly? Too Canadian? ….
The name’s Blond, Ed Blond….
I’d just like to cast this heartfelt ‘thanks‘ out to everyone who’s made my birthday (and my life) an amazing occasion!
Much love, Ed 🙂
Another dear friend shines in the limelight!
—ooops, not to be confused with the sweet but powerful girl robot in WALL-E
(that’s what Eva calls me in turn, Wollyyyyyy!)
but, the one and only:
********Eva Maria Neubauer********
(Eva and Yoann, like me, are seasoned sahaja yogis 🙂 )
And here’s the whole recent episode in Austrian national television, ORF:
(and don’t miss Eva in Cop Stories in ORF 1 at 21:20 on Tuesday, Nov. 18!)
Here’s Eva’s site:
As mentioned in the last two posts, a dear friend of ours from France has been poised to triumph in the national TV singing contest there. Well …
The actual events and interviews speak for themselves.
WHAT A GREAT FEELING!
Permanent link to all translated videos of The Voice 2013, France:
(here, the Finals — allow a few minutes for video streaming)
Here’s an article in “Le Parisien” (major French newspaper):
Vincennes’ mayor put posters “Vote Yoann” on the walls of the town, on the walls of the schools, and organized a support evening! (before the contest finals)
~click on Yoann~
In another newspaper interview (before the finals) Yoann explained that he’s not sure why he won over his old friend and teacher, Emmanuel Djob, but that the people voted that way, and maybe because he (Yoann) gave love from his heart, and maybe because coaches Jenifer and Florent Pagny were also supporting him; and that he does not get stressed or nervous because he practices meditation regularly, and music is an extension of his self, making no difference if he sings alone or in front of thousands, and seeking to perfect, not just the skills, but to go deeper to reach the true self; and this approach to singing is not restricted to one culture or religion, but can express all aspects of spirituality; and he will continue to sing, and someday hopefully create a music school in Paris. (In one more article, it’s mentioned that he meditated with other contestants, helping to calm their stress.)
a few months later,
Yoann’s first single:
A short video-compilation, ‘Love/Courage/Innocence’:
In a few days, The Voice Finals videos (with English translations) will be ready!
But, in the meantime, Ed’s getting restless
(waiting for the translators to finish) …
In memory and celebration of my thirty years learning and growing with the greatest spiritual personage of modern times.
In 1995 I was intending to buy a typewriter to start writing stories, but someone told me to get a computer instead, because you can delete your mistakes. They suggested I contact a mutual friend who had computer experience. It turned out (happily!) that he was one of the relatively few Mac users in Austria at that time (there was one small Mac repair/retail shop in the whole of Austria then). I ordered a Powerbook 150 (with 240 MB — not GB — hard drive! 4 MB RAM, and tiny black and white screen) from the USA. It was the beginning of a priceless creative relationship which is still improving and expanding today. I’ve since upgraded my hardware every four or five years (my second Powerbook enabled me to taste —in color! — the early fruits of the World Wide Web) and got my first iPod in 2002, before they became universally popular. (And I’ve had my @mac — now @me — email address and web services for ten years running, which I can now even access from my ‘iPhone’.)
PC users argue that there’s nothing special about Macs, but it comes down to a simple preference based on the user’s inclination to work more with the left or right side of the brain. A mechanical (dryer) user will find Windows just fine, thank you very much; but a more artistic (wetter) user will enjoy the fun/intuitive/elegant style of Macs much more, smiling occasionally down upon the sarcastic PC fan.
We’ve come a long way along the road of creative communication. Let’s hope there may be many more Steve Jobs’ out here among the creative generation of babies and youngsters growing up in our midst.
Happy trails, Steve.
Best wishes, Ed
Had a blast on the weekend here in Vienna! Here’s my compilation of Ossi, Boris, Andreas, Michi, Deepak, and Petra’s video/photo material.
Hope to see you at the next event 🙂
a guaranteed stress-reliever~♥~
Over here in Vienna there was once a star shining with the intensity of the Fred Astairs, Gene Kellys and Danny Kayes on the other side of the Atlantic. What does it take for one human being to inspire and elevate millions of hearts? We can only watch and wonder as their mirthful light passes through our lives.
As our inner evolution opens up all that timeless potential which has till now been closed to most of us, let’s hope our world will see countless more Peter Alexanders setting new ingenious levels of simple en-JOY-ment in the coming decades.
June 30, 1926 – February 12, 2011
Peter Alexander, Austrian actor, singer and entertainer who was revered both at home and in neighboring Germany, has died, his spokeswoman said Sunday. He was 84. The star who symbolized the return of laughter, lightheartedness and the economic upswing after World War II (similar to the popular trend in Hollywood) passed away Saturday. Since the 1950s, Alexander appeared in some 50 film comedies and recorded more than 120 records. He was also a regular on TV for decades. Known as “Peter the Great” by his fans, his name was synonymous with Austrian charm and wit.
Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann lauded Alexander as a ‘great Austrian.’ “As an artist, Peter Alexander made generations of people happy — both at home and abroad”. Culture Minister Claudia Schmied stated that Alexander was a pioneer of German language TV entertainment.
“Austria (and the world) is losing a great entertainer”.
Here’s a friend, Yoann Freget, who’s presently touring in North America.
If you have something important to say, and you can’t find a way to say it, try singing it.
Despite all the depressing, money-making headlines, you can easily find inspiring things happening between people the world over. Here are two distant examples of people giving joy to people. The first took place recently on the edge of the wild Canadian West Coast rain forest, where my youngest brother kept a secret from his beloved for years (that he was planning to propose to her when they finished their new house), and suddenly sprung it on her at the house-warming party in their new waterfront homestead. The second comes from China, where some old friends, forming an international group of musicians, did a free concert tour for the love of simply sharing joy with fellow human beings. In both cases, we discover that our eyes can also leak when the heart is overflowing (not just when it’s empty) …
You have a nice day, okay?
Go ahead and call me a sentimental sap, but my eyes leak every time I come across these simple images of collective human spirit …
… and here:
I’d just like to thank the Universe and all my friends and helpers – known and unknown – on this germinating day one of a new year on Earth (my birthday). And thanks to you for stopping by. I may never have the privilege of meeting you in person, but I’ve been around long enough to know that the most important and potent exchanges that go on between people happen in the mysterious realm of the heart, well above and beyond formal introduction.
So I sincerely hope you’ll enjoy this day as much as I do.
(hosts of angels created for the occasion by my artist wife!)
“Still crazy, after all these years.”
There lies, in the heart of every person, a seed of youthful enthusiasm. I experienced this at our mega-1970s neighbourhood reunion last weekend, where a couple hundred old friends all got together for the first time in over three decades. No matter how much time seems to glide by under the bridge, or how stiff and ‘mature’ we seem to become, all the heartfelt fun and optimism of our youth linger on inside us, camouflaged like a wide-eyed, baby doe on the edge of a shady forest.
The setting up of this event (and the ongoing Facebook reunion) has been a labour of love for the past eight months. More than an excellent hobby, it has proven to impact my life and those of life-long friends in a way that only reawakened friendships can. The human heart is a mysterious place, full of unexplored depths and heights. It is my belief, after almost thirty years of daily meditation and introspection, that, when enlightened, the heart can take us to our superhuman potential and the indescribable joy that inevitably accompanies that.
Getting together with old friends to reminisce and laugh may seem like a mundane function, but the relatively small waves of love that surface in our hearts are just the peaks of an infinite ocean – and if That can be awakened inside us, then the world will rapidly rise to a whole new level of enjoyment and harmony. There is a specific something in us that, when triggered, links our limited attention to the unlimited field of our spirit. It’s my intention to help beloved old friends, who were as dear to me as family long ago, to come within reach of this inner connection. I sincerely hope that many can feel that now, and will gradually discover all their buried treasure within.
On May 9, 2009, an enthusiastic gesture for peace was made in Nicosia, Cyprus, as hundreds of artists and children worldwide had their ambassadors for peace – handmade elephants – displayed on both sides of the dividing-line checkpoint.
The two mayors of the world’s last divided capital embraced in friendship, a gesture showing hope for a future of peace. History was also made by three ‘enemy’ passport holders – students helping with the exhibition – being allowed to cross the island’s severely guarded, temporary internal border! It may not have been the joyful civic tidal wave that eradicated the dreaded Berlin Wall in 1989, but every drop counts when it’s to help quench the thirst for freedom of the innocent generations to come.
Another highlight of the day came as a local shopkeeper near the checkpoint gave the artist organizers access to his wireless Internet service, allowing us, via web-cam, to broadcast live to the international Schengen Peace Foundation conference taking place simultaneously in Luxembourg – from one end of Europe to the other on Europe Day! All the delegates in attendance applauded after seeing and hearing about the efforts being made, by adults and children alike, for the important cause of lasting peace over in Cyprus.
The following day, Mother’s Day, the peace-exhibition was invited to Jerusalem by an Israeli university professor. The elephants-without-borders are on the march!
With a little mutual forgiveness, and respect for the innocent generations to come, this world can become a beautiful home for everyone.
Here’s my video-collage of the event (music courtesy of Matt Malley, former Counting Crows bass player)
If the Armageddon really takes place, please, may all the musical mobflashers be spared!
Many of us intuitively recognize the subtle connection that exists between all human beings, and with all of nature. This field of awareness has something to do with our minds, but much more to do with our hearts.
I recently chanced upon a subject of discussion with someone, that led to my meeting, for the first time in my life, with two sisters and a brother who I’d never had contact with (fifty years late, but maybe at the exact time it was meant to happen). This took place during a short visit to Canada. A few months later, I made a new friend while in Cyprus. During a lull in an after-dinner conversation, I suddenly started talking about my small ‘miracle’ in Canada to him. It turned out that this man also has a brother who he has never met, and who happens to live in my place of residence, Austria. By ‘chance’, I know the head of personnel at the company that his brother works for, which may lead to the healing meeting of these two separated siblings.
Yesterday, I connected with an old friend via Facebook, who I hadn’t seen in about thirty years. We exchanged a few sentences of enthusiastic, typed dialog in the tiny chat-box. Of all the things he chose to mention in these moments, was the fact that he lives near another old friend who I also hadn’t seen in years. I told him – amazed – that twenty-five minutes before I had just looked up that same person in a public internet search site, and phoned his home to say hi!
I have the feeling that this Power/Universe/Spirit manifests in our lives when we need to experience constructive inner growth and healing. In fact, judging by the many similar experiences I’ve lived and heard about in my travels, these compassionate nudges are becoming more and more frequent in people’s lives. Could we be entering a time when all the invisible beauty inside us shines out, when the collective consciousness of universal love unites us and puts an end to jealousy and aggression?
Things may get temporarily worse before the break-through, but there is no doubt in my mind – and heart – that a sunrise is coming that no generation will ever forget.
(Valentine’s Day, 2009)
Despite the fact that the world family is growing closer and closer together in communication, love and understanding, there are still certain hot-spots on our planet that require patient, collective attention. One such healing wound is called Cyprus. In mid-January, 2009, the voices of a few international artists and enthusiastic children brought cooling balm in the form of ‘Elephants for Peace.’ This was the beginning of a world-tour art/peace project created by German artist and historian, Rose Marie Gnausch, and the Art Initiative Naturalmente RoMa.
My wife and I were honored to be present for this inauguration, to be able to share our creative talents for such a noble cause, and to meet so many local, influential people whose hearts are set on peace for future generations. The next event in Cyprus will be along Ledra Street in Nicosia on both sides of the border – May 9 and 10, for the one year anniversary of this border opening – before the growing exhibition moves on to other countries. Here’s my little film collage of the initial ‘sprouting’ (higher resolution, 480p, can be selected at the bottom after you start) …
if that doesn’t work, go to this address and wait a few minutes for high resolution streaming before playing:
Every age has its greatest discovery. The greatest of all is inside of us.
When I woke up this morning, this new rhythm was vibrating through me. I would like to dedicate it to all unsung, lonely children and adults out there, waiting to someday be hugged. May the day come soon, when no human being feels unloved.
(The bass is my heel on the floor – heard best through a proper set of speakers – and the rest comes from my fingers on the desk)
with much (needed) love,
The other morning I went out to our garden for a few moments of meditation before finishing the illustrations for my children’s books. Soon after I sat down on the lawn, I heard scratching sounds coming from inside the metal drain pipe that runs down from the roof. It occurred to me that one of the young birds that recently hatched nearby had somehow managed to get itself trapped in the pipe, and couldn’t fly up to escape. Realizing that it would slowly cook to death once the sun rose, I opened the bottom of the pipe, just below the bend, hoping it would find its way out. A few minutes later I opened my eyes at the sound of frantic wings as the excited bird blasted away into the trees, chirping wildly to its friends about its scary adventure! I’ve never gone out to sit at that particular spot before. How very auspicious.
In a world full of mutual distrust and back-stabbing, it’s an inspiration every time strangers take an opportunity to help each other. I was recently ripped-off by one of those many ‘vanity publishing’ companies out there. (In this case it was Diggory Press, who’s proprietor is being taken to court by many injured writers this summer.) It came as quite a shock to discover that not only was my money up-in-smoke, but that I would not be published in time for my upcoming organized deadlines. Well, as good fortune would have it, my fall was not as hard as it could have been. Through this drama I was lucky to become acquainted with an amiable and enthusiastic educator/writer named Stephen who, with his family, lives on the windswept Atlantic coast of Ireland where he has just started a small but reputable publishing company (CheckPointPress.com). Everything worked out perfectly for me to publish in time, and that with comfortingly transparent, encouraging arrangements.
I just wanted to share these small events to encourage other eager birds like me to keep watch for the helping hand just around the next hard corner.
(p.s.- Something else: Do you usually remember what you just dreamed if you wake up suddenly? I don’t normally remember, but this morning I heard this in deep sleep: ‘There’s a way of waking up in time.’ Then I opened my eyes. Then my alarm rang. There’s a lot that we still have to learn about ourselves.)
men as rulers – bullies of the planet – have overstayed their welcome
Hum-dee-dum, tra-la, tra-la . . .
Now, where were we – oh, my gosh! Is it so late already? Almost eight years passed the twentieth century? How time does fly when you’re having fun.
When I was young, I earnestly believed that a pandemic of fun could save mankind. Funny – now that I think of it – I still do, although my outlook has become somewhat more refined. The youthful images of reckless abandon have been replaced by a majestic movie in which every person shines with a child’s countenance, bubbling with the champagne of wise innocence. In this age of global communication and friendship across all borders (let’s just ignore the racists, fundamentalists, fed-up-ists, megamerger-swallowtheworld-industrialist-capitalists and political-power-activists for the moment) we find the ideal setting for the kindergarten birthday party utopia, where care is no longer an ulcer-giving demon in the back of the mind, but a magical, benevolent whim that spontaneously brings luck to others. By ‘fun’, I’m of course referring to the stuff that shines from the pearl of joy, not its wannabe, temporary copy that sometimes emits from the fickle happiness/unhappiness coin. (More on that somewhere below: Just scroll down this site to investigate.)
Things were a lot different back in the days of my great-grandfather, Reverend Christian Saugstad. Not only were those guys bereft of Internet, I don’t think even fun had been invented yet! Imagine leading your followers over one-and-a-half thousand rugged miles to a new, puritan home in the wilderness (from Minnesota to British Columbia). That was hard work back in 1894; no jumbojet-getaway! But I’m sure they experienced something resembling fun after the men spent the first fall and winter on the freezing coast chopping trees, shoveling snow and building log cabins, and then all their wives and children ferried up from the capital in the spring thaw. Well, I guess if reincarnation is the norm, we all bin there; dun that. I ain’t sayin’ that the plastic smell of computers is more inspiring to collective understanding and integration than a five hundred year old cedar rainforest, but the invention of mass-communication terminals and networks have brought us a long way in appreciating each other. Old Rev. C. didn’t even want his people to marry non-Norwegians, not to mention Muslims, Hindus or Jews (although they did somehow manage to get in among the more enlightened aboriginals). His son, my grandfather the sea captain, was more evolved in this respect. He brought home his bride from Cornwall after WW1, Norwegian or no. Why, she wasn’t even a conformed Christian. Surviving witnesses in the old Vancouver neighbourhood may still recall the public argument she had one day across the picket fence with Mr. Bible-Thumper next door, insisting that reincarnation of human beings is a natural and inevitable process (“and-you-can-jolly-well-put-that-in-your-pipe-and-smoke-it!”). And that was well before the New Age Revolution began in the sixties. Um . . . Grandma’s reincarnation> Cornwall> Sea captain> Indians> the old Rev.> . . . ah, yes – the Internet: It’s obvious to me, after twenty-five years of daily personal subjective, and international objective experience in Sahaja Yoga, that this new level of global communication is a result of an accelerated inner process of collective consciousness. Naturally, these deep, evolutionary, spiritually powerful, expanding awareness thingies do tend to find ways of manifesting appropriate tools, so it’s no wonder that super-fast, super-portable, super-affordable gadgets and systems have sprouted into common use for the greater goodness of getting everyone universally chummy. I’m also convinced (und ich wuerde meinen rechten Arm darauf verwetten) that as soon as all this evil and bullying and perversion and smug complacency has been played out, that wave of – yes, in your face – LOVE is going to wash over the stage, and we’ll be in for one hell-of-a (oops), I mean, one wonderful show!
You may sayyy I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one . . . And whatever desire you hold on to, is the direction you move toward. It seems we’re shifting into a whole new mode*.
(Stay tuned for further fun ‘n’ fascinating features . . .)
Now, I really must get back to my wood chopping. (I do find it fun!)
(And I truly do admire the seeking spirit of my fore-fathers/mothers, including my own parents, whose appetites for shared goodness and truth, in times of such pervading spiritual darkness, have been encouraging.)
There are a lot of concepts about meditation. But for those who’ve experienced the real thing, it’s obvious that meditation is the state in which all limited concepts are exposed for what they are, and a new kind of insight becomes the norm.
Meditation is the state of thoughtless-awareness reached when the human attention rises above the mental turmoil to perceive everything as it really is, above thoughts. This state allows one to experience in a direct, actual way, without the filter of conditionings and projections. That may sound over-simplified and unlikely, but it is in fact a very natural, essential evolution of our consciousness.
Even after twenty-five years of daily moments of meditation, I’m still often surprised and delighted by my personal experiences, which sometimes come unexpectedly and in new, varied ways. One becomes aware of the subtle ‘vibrations’ that emit from persons, places, things or occurrences. The other day I sat behind a mother playing with her laughing baby on a public bus. My mind was filled with clear silence, and my body became light, joy-filled and pleasantly cool. In contrast, as I later strolled along the sidewalk and passed two angry motorists exchanging hot words over a minor accident, I experienced a short but vivid wave of heat, tension and noise inside. On such occasions, I usually take a moment to direct the very subtle, cool vibrations, that indicate and can even activate a deeply healthy and constructive state, into the fray, so to speak. This can be done with a simple implementation of the attention, or by using the hands. Once, when confronted by a raging clerk who had grown impatient with my innocent questions, I simply asked her to hold out her hands, palms up, to see what she feels. Taken aback by my request, she spontaneously complied and shortly replied that she felt waves of heat pouring out of them. I put my hand above hers, mentioning that we all have a special energy in the sacrum bone at the base of the spine, which easily rises at contact with certain cool, subtle vibrations, clearing stubborn obstacles to our well-being. Suddenly, her hands emitted a soft, cool breeze, and her tense face broke into a lovely smile. She then felt the same cool wind coming out of the top of her head, indicating that this energy, kundalini, had risen up the spine to the fontanel. We were mutually grateful for this wonderful moment, which had bonded us in a way previously unknown and unreachable to average human beings.
In the simple practice of Sahaja Yoga meditation, which I and my family have enjoyed daily for over a quarter century, a natural process unfolds within the body, expanding the normally dwarfed human awareness. This is easily verifiable by anyone with an honest inclination to feel truth – and I don’t mean emotionally. Once the human nervous system is enlightened, it’s possible to literally feel the difference between goodness and harmfulness, constructiveness and destructiveness. It’s the closed, biased circuit of our personal thought processes that keeps us in the shell of insecurity and ignorance. The benefits I’ve experienced and seen would (and inevitably will) fill a book. I find it shameful – indeed tragic – that a handful of malicious persons invest their time in defaming this unprecedented, universal gift, thereby misleading earnest seekers. It’s an old story, I guess. History is full of the scars from dark hearts which couldn’t stand the light – individuals who cleverly don the robes of would-be righteousness. It’s always been easier to rally under the banners of hatred and suspicion, than to proudly plant the flags of common goodness. At last we’re able to equip ourselves with the inner tools to perceive reality and establish clarity. Now that we all stand on the threshold of a beautiful, new opportunity, I sincerely hope that you will recognize the difference when your moment comes.
You can try, just now.
Open your hands, palms upward, and ask quietly in your heart
for your Self-realization.
You can close your eyes or else look at the picture above this text.
Within a few seconds you should feel something in your hands
and on top of your head.
Take a few moments to enjoy this change.
This is the beginning.
I was visiting friends the other day. Their daughter, who I know since babyhood, just graduated from high school. She is now tall and smart, but just as much a free-spirited child as she always was. She has always nurtured her spiritual ascent, meditating regularly to enjoy the daily inner clearing and centering effect that this inbuilt connection, this sahaja yoga, has on her. Her classmates never showed any particular interest in her. But on the last day of classes, she was approached by the other girls who had been shocked to hear that she was not going with them on the graduation field trip. She was moved to tears when they started crying with dismay at the prospect of never seeing her again. They probably didn’t know themselves why they were so overwhelmed with emotion at this loss. The subtle vibrations that emit from such a person, like a comforting, familiar fragrance, sooth the energy centers and channels in others. This is not a theory, but a well documented phenomena which has been occurring with increasing frequency. I remember when another born-realized toddler made friends with an elderly lady on a return flight from India. Leaning against her knees, he sweetly smiled up into her face, radiating joy and thoughtless awareness. Then he played nearby, sometimes involving her in his games. By the end of the journey, the woman was beside herself with mirth. As they wheeled her from the plane, she was heard to exclaim, “I don’t know what has come over me. I feel so good!”
Such is the nature of the higher state we are approaching – a state of boundless benevolence that benefits everyone, regardless of race, age or social class. Its range of influence is limited by only one factor: human free will. A person with an honest and humble desire to attain freedom from blinding conditionings and misleading ambitions – one who feels, or at least hopes, that there is something more to life than what we’ve known so far – is destined to attain this treasure. It’s easy to reach, but sometimes a challenge to maintain in this chaotic world. At work and school we have to engage our brains in mundane, and often frustrating, routine. And the landslides of thoughts that bury our attention don’t vanish of their own accord when we come home to rest*. This key to freedom from random mental chatter is only ours to use when it once rises from its hiding place at the base of the spine to open the highest door at the top of the head. With minimal daily effort of the newly enlightened attention, you can permanently escape the burdens of the past and future, and settle into the playful present. If this is such a universal principal, why don’t we learn it in school and practice it in the workplace, you might justly ask. This knowledge and technique is now being implemented in many such institutions, but you know what they said about the early inventions of radio and television (and the later innovation of Apple digital devices): amazing, but will they ever be accepted into common use? Sometimes we humans stick to the old familiar and try to ignore the improvements we could embrace. May the essential joy and inner peace become the familiar that we get hooked on, leaving behind the dead-weight and noise that holds us down. Absolute freedom is just a breath away.
(*In sleep we can step out of this mental traffic, but the third state, that of meditation, is by far more deeply nurturing and liberating, in a permanent way.)
In the morning I was down near the creek. I suddenly heard a deep, dangerous sound like a thunder clap rising out of the earth. I stood still and peered in the direction from which it came. As I watched, just eight or nine meters upstream from where I stood, rooted to the spot, an eighty year old cherry tree cracked in the middle of its wide trunk, and came ripping and crashing down onto my bank of the small river. Then all was silent and sunny again. Although it was rather a sad and shocking sight to see this old, proud member of the forest lying there, fatally broken, never to enjoy the water in her roots and sun and birds in her branches again, I understood that nature had run her course and that the saplings sprouting out of the rich earth nearby would rise up to take her place.
The same is true in the world of humans. It’s not a shame to pass away and be born again as something higher – someone richer in love and experience – but it is regrettable to shatter one’s inner foundations through frivolous free will, thereby scarring the face of future possibilities.
I recently read a reader’s short statement in a city newspaper, written by a simple, sensible woman, pleading for a move to balanced sexual relations between human beings in our modern society. It was a refreshing plea. We tend to be a society of addicts. Whatever feels good is used and abused to extremes until – like a drug whose effects we numb to, forcing us to take more to feel it – it dominates our senses and our true freedom. I imagine that this concerned citizen caught a distinct glimpse of this break down of common sense, and wondered why two people united in mutual, collectively sanctioned love, could not share this sacred and magical experience privately, without hearing and seeing the topic advertised around every corner like a circus event. Not all that is natural and personal should be hung out on your front door. There is sublime dignity, and there are deep, natural guidelines to a thriving existence, rooted inside each of us.
Back in the early twentieth century, someone* came up with an absurd, twisted theory about sexual feelings between children and their parents (recently exposed as being unfounded) and certain followers of this concept, certain of their cause in making sex an open forum (in effect, watering down the potency of this special, intimate act) shouted from the roof tops that, because there are the nazi-like, or old-fashioned minded who try to repress us in our natural expression, we must run full speed in the other direction to avoid disaster. The individual and collective damage done in such a misguided venture is mostly subtle, but there appear obvious signs of weakness and decline which we tend to ignore. We, as a race, are very slow learners.
It’s time to adjust to the center and rebuild our inner foundations. The experiences of the left and the right extremes are sensational, but not sustainable, and certainly not constructive in the long term. Maybe we’re conditioned now by politics, believing that the ‘center‘ represents a sterile, diplomatic void where nothing concrete can be achieved. The inner center is actually the source of power and creativity. It is the eternal present, abundant in joy and resonant experience. It is built into our subtle beings, and easily accessible through spontaneous self-realization. There springs the love and innocence that make sex, and all other tender exchanges in a dedicated relationship, fulfilling.
Okay, we’ve tried all the cheap extremes. Now let’s get to the potent essence.
(*One of his students, Carl Jung, went on to discover more realistic and helpful facts about the human psyche.)
We are entering the Age of Miracles, a time when the word miracle loses its familiar meaning – a time when the full potential of human beings is realized and that wondrous splendor spills out to enhance all living experience. (For some, this statement will produce the following reaction: ho-hum, I think I’ll click over to eBay for a cheap camera. Another might rave: yeah, far out, it’s all, like, so WOW! Most – hopefully – will take a moment to peek inside themselves to find out if any hidden treasures lie buried there.)
We’ve heard all the apparently fantastic proclamations: The day of the Last Judgement is nigh; the Comforter and Counselor is coming; watch for the time of Kiyama; the New Age of Aquarius has dawned. . . . Is the highway we’re driving down leading to something permanently better, or just to bumpier disappointment?
Something essential gets overlooked in most of our presumptions about our collective future: whatever shape it takes depends on what’s happening inside each individual. If everyone’s banging their heads against the Wall of Life, the future is bound to be a headache. If everyone is running in circles and complaining about it, we’re definitely in for a dizzy, grumpy trip. If, on the other hand, we can find out if there’s something important inside of us that has till now escaped our attention – something positively revolutionizing – we could be greeted by a very promising landscape indeed. The problem is, the solution seems too simple for our complicated insides. Looking around, we see worrying results of that inner fragmentation. Internal integration is the key.
A good heart (considered by some as a sign of weakness) is a good start, but even benevolent intentions can only take us so far. Still missing is that jump to light-speed that takes us instantly from confusion to clarity. The Force is with us, but how to tap its precious resources? Believe it or not, it’s a natural, built-in germination. Unlike most natural things, it can’t be exterminated through human folly. It’s born of Love, the most powerful force in the universe. It’s tangible. Take a look – it’s inside you.
Over forty summers ago, at the neither-here-nor-there age of fourteen, I picked up my bongos, stuck out my thumb, and followed the long-haired trail of freedom through Western Canada. My middle-class traveling companions and I ended up in the middle of a hippy community in a public park in central British Columbia. One sultry evening, a long, cool black man showed up introducing himself as John Lee Hooker’s brother – they were in town for an upcoming concert. He took out his guitar and played to the awestruck gathering. Unfortunately, I sat down nearby and pounded on my bongos. Despite the gentleman’s encouraging smiles in my direction, my wine-drenched mind just wouldn’t allow me to keep pace. (The following morning, an acutely annoyed banjo-playing hippy, who had also tried accompanying the star guest in the park, threw a beer bottle at me when I picked up my bongos to tap along.) This was my early introduction to a liberal, but not entirely liberating, life-style. I went in and out of hippy circles over the following decade, eventually cutting off my freak-flag (long hair) and escaping out of alcohol and drug abuse. (When my fourteen-year-old son recently put his hand on my shoulder and declared, ‘wouldn’t it be great if we could go back to the sixties!’ I couldn’t keep my lip and eyebrows from curling in honest resentment to the sentiment.)
I didn’t become a corporate executive, military commander or gambling-empire tycoon (I prefer working with my hands – wood is nice), but the wild ways of the beautiful children of nature also didn’t draw my allegiance. It’s funny how life’s many complications actually come out of two simple mistakes: right turns, and left turns. Did you know that your governing nervous system is made up of a distinct left and a right side? I say governing, because we’re normally victims of our pendular moods – domination of the left and right sides of our brain (ego and superego). There’s also something very important and little understood called the para-sympathetic, which automatically animates the various functions of the body. After self-realization, this benevolent caretaker glides in, like a first-class customer service, to make life more fulfilling. From this point on, you become your own *manager, gravitating always to the optimum *center, for maximum efficiency and enjoyment. (*not to be confused with corporate manager, and political center!)
Just to set the record straight: Hippies and other social drop-outs are not always left-sided; and public leaders are not always right-sided. I’ve seen ambitious hippies playing a marathon world-domination board-game, which made me glad that they didn’t really hold the reigns of power; and I’ve met a couple of military officers (Russian and Indian) who write poetry and pray for world peace.
(Here in Austria, there are some pretty intense vibrational elements from the two extremes, from Nazi attitudes to Freud and Catholic ghosts.)