Sunday, 20 March 2011

Post No. 250 - Withdrawal vs. engagement

I have had the attitude, throughout most of my life, that the better form of spirituality is that which engages with the world, whilst recognising that there are times when one has to withdraw, partially or totally, to develop oneself and one's skills.

I'm now modifying that slightly, by adding a need to withdraw to allow one to recover and heal from the struggles, strains and outright damage caused by living in "the world". The sorts of pressures that can lead to needing to withdraw include:
  • other people's leaky auras (a MAJOR problem where I live, surrounded by four million other people);
  • the combative pressures of commercial reality (again, a particular problem for me in my day job, as, if I don't win enough bids for work, I don't ultimately get to keep my job);
  • interactions with people that others take for granted - which is a particular problem for me as a member of several minorities (hence, for instance, for every function I have to attend for work or as a result of friendships, acquiantanceship or other connections [e.g. through partners], my second consideration is along the line of am I going to be abused, assaulted or ignored, or in some way have to defend myself verbally, physically or legally [my firstconsideration is how much psychic and spiritual protection I am going to have to exert]).
I think there is something to say for the idea of having a retreat from time to time ... now, if only there were pagan-friendly retreats, or pagan retreats that weren't based on high levels of interaction and forced intimacy with total strangers - which is not the best idea for psychically and otherwise sensitive folk such as myself ...

Love, light, hugs and blessings


20 March, 2011


Stupid people, reasonable people and forms of travel

I was originally going to call this post "Stupid people, reasonable people, ..." but I decided that was a bit harsh, so so I changed the name to "Nongs, reasonable people, ..." - I've started referring to The L Word as The Nong Word, as the people in it are, quite simply, mostly nongs - the character of Jenny Schecter in particular, is quite alien to the down-to-earth dykes I know, and Alice Pieszecki is not like any bisexual I know. However, then I saw the episode [1] where Jenny's rank stupidity gets Moira assaulted, and reverted back to the original title.

(At least things get a bit better as the seasons progress ... I particularly liked hearing that Captain Tasha Williams "doesn't do drama". Mind you, my partner has commented that the character of Jenny seems to almost have a dissociative personality disorder ... at times they all seem to have a bit of this: oh well, it is a TV drama ... )

This choice of title was reinforced recently when I was buying petrol: as I was being served the service station attendant, someone who is quite polite and pleasant - and the reason I go there to buy my petrol - asked how I was, and the young male idiot behind me answered! What an absolute moron! Did that cretin think that because a female was in front of him the female didn't count? Or was he just up himself and decided that no-one else in the world was of enough importance for anyone to talk to so of course he was being addressed. Either way, he was a complete jerk.

There are, in my opinion, too many examples of people being, well, stupid is too harsh a word, but let's say at least foolish, or maybe naive. For example, I recently joined a few Yahoo groups. I left one when racist tripe started being thrown around, and then on one of the others, it became clear to me that someone responding to a comment from myself had completely misinterpreted the article we were discussing, thinking it was favourable, not critical, of the person we were discussing. This was then compounded when everyone seemed to buy into an apparently inspiring story about Herman Rosenblat - which even came with advice to Google him. Well, I prefer Dogpile, but in this case, I used Wikipedia, and found out that, yes, he is a genuine Holocaust survivor, but no, the amazing story he claimed was true was actually a hoax.

Another example of the sort of behaviour I am thinking of is the person who, when told I most missed giving up honey when I found out I was diabetic, said "Oh, but honey is healthy! You should still eat honey, it can't harm you". Well, stupid, actually, yes, it can - its is 80% sugar, sugar in a more natural form than refined sugar, but still SUGAR, and the blood tests I did on myself when I tried one honey sandwich proved how catastrophic it can be for a diabetic.

The important question here is: why? Why do people do, think and say these stupid things? In general, I consider people fall into many of these traps out of desperation. They want something, whether it is a feeling of connectedness, a feeling of affection, or feeling that they have got a bargain (which has at least two or three layers of emotion under it that I can identify without trying), and they allow that desire to override common sense - which, sadly, as the saying goes, is far from common.

Another view on this is Lobsang Rampa's comments, in several books that, allegedly, signals are not getting through to us from our Overself. If that is so, it would certainly explain the importance of meditation, which fosters that connection (when done properly, and not debased into an exercise to try and force relaxation rather than addressing the causes of tension).

On the other hand, at the opposite end of the spectrum is the legal concept of a "reasonable person". This is the basis of legal advice I have had, for instance, that here, in Victoria, Australia, someone using the wrong pronouns to refer to a trans person is doing something that a reasonable person would find offensive. The concept refers to someone who is mature, properly informed, without unreasonable biases - so not a fundamentalist extremist of any persuasion. (You can find a more formal definition here, and a recent opinion expressing doubt about the currency of this concept here.)

Finally, I want to touch upon the concept of physical travel. Yes, this can be enjoyable, and can even broaden the mind - particularly if you've had a sheltered upbringing (it is arrogance to presume that it will broaden the mind of everyone: some people have travelled well with their minds already, through things like ... reading, meditating, growing, their own life experiences, astral travel, etc). Personally, I often find, at this stage of my life, travel of the mind/spirit/soul better ... Travel to the country to escape the psychic pressures of the city can be rejuvenating for me, and international travel, in these post 9-11 days, is fraught with so many problems because I don't fit into the "normal" boxes that the experience in-between the trip there and back is more than outweighed by the trauma caused by security theatre. There are some places I would like to see, but I will happily wait a decade or two until the current insanity dies down and decisions about security are no longer being made by people who tend towards the stupid end of the spectrum because of their limited understanding of human beings ... which is an assessment a reasonable person would agree with :) For more on this, see here, here (especially the comments about security theatre; also, try following aviation safety generally for a little while, and then assess your perception of security risks ... ) and here (which I particularly agree with, having had some sexual assaults in my life).

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr
(Pronounced "new-MYTH-ear")

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: psychic development, psychic health, retreats, self defence, society, withdrawal

First published: Sunnudagr, 20th March, 2011

Last edited: Sunday, 20th March, 2011

Post No. 249 - Stupid people, reasonable people and forms of travel

I was originally going to call this post "Stupid people, reasonable people, ..." but I decided that was a bit harsh, so so I changed the name to "Nongs, reasonable people, ..." - I've started referring to The L Word as The Nong Word, as the people in it are, quite simply, mostly nongs - the character of Jenny Schecter in particular, is quite alien to the down-to-earth dykes I know, and Alice Pieszecki is not like any bisexual I know. However, then I saw the episode [1] where Jenny's rank stupidity gets Moira assaulted, and reverted back to the original title.

(At least things get a bit better as the seasons progress ... I particularly liked hearing that Captain Tasha Williams "doesn't do drama". Mind you, my partner has commented that the character of Jenny seems to almost have a dissociative personality disorder ... at times they all seem to have a bit of this: oh well, it is a TV drama ... )

This choice of title was reinforced recently when I was buying petrol: as I was being served the service station attendant, someone who is quite polite and pleasant - and the reason I go there to buy my petrol - asked how I was, and the young male idiot behind me answered! What an absolute moron! Did that cretin think that because a female was in front of him the female didn't count? Or was he just up himself and decided that no-one else in the world was of enough importance for anyone to talk to so of course he was being addressed. Either way, he was a complete jerk.

There are, in my opinion, too many examples of people being, well, stupid is too harsh a word, but let's say at least foolish, or maybe naive. For example, I recently joined a few Yahoo groups. I left one when racist tripe started being thrown around, and then on one of the others, it became clear to me that someone responding to a comment from myself had completely misinterpreted the article we were discussing, thinking it was favourable, not critical, of the person we were discussing. This was then compounded when everyone seemed to buy into an apparently inspiring story about Herman Rosenblat - which even came with advice to Google him. Well, I prefer Dogpile, but in this case, I used Wikipedia, and found out that, yes, he is a genuine Holocaust survivor, but no, the amazing story he claimed was true was actually a hoax.

Another example of the sort of behaviour I am thinking of is the person who, when told I most missed giving up honey when I found out I was diabetic, said "Oh, but honey is healthy! You should still eat honey, it can't harm you". Well, stupid, actually, yes, it can - its is 80% sugar, sugar in a more natural form than refined sugar, but still SUGAR, and the blood tests I did on myself when I tried one honey sandwich proved how catastrophic it can be for a diabetic.

The important question here is: why? Why do people do, think and say these stupid things? In general, I consider people fall into many of these traps out of desperation. They want something, whether it is a feeling of connectedness, a feeling of affection, or feeling that they have got a bargain (which has at least two or three layers of emotion under it that I can identify without trying), and they allow that desire to override common sense - which, sadly, as the saying goes, is far from common.

Another view on this is Lobsang Rampa's comments, in several books that, allegedly, signals are not getting through to us from our Overself. If that is so, it would certainly explain the importance of meditation, which fosters that connection (when done properly, and not debased into an exercise to try and force relaxation rather than addressing the causes of tension).

On the other hand, at the opposite end of the spectrum is the legal concept of a "reasonable person". This is the basis of legal advice I have had, for instance, that here, in Victoria, Australia, someone using the wrong pronouns to refer to a trans person is doing something that a reasonable person would find offensive. The concept refers to someone who is mature, properly informed, without unreasonable biases - so not a fundamentalist extremist of any persuasion. (You can find a more formal definition here, and a recent opinion expressing doubt about the currency of this concept here.)

Finally, I want to touch upon the concept of physical travel. Yes, this can be enjoyable, and can even broaden the mind - particularly if you've had a sheltered upbringing (it is arrogance to presume that it will broaden the mind of everyone: some people have travelled well with their minds already, through things like ... reading, meditating, growing, their own life experiences, astral travel, etc). Personally, I often find, at this stage of my life, travel of the mind/spirit/soul better ... Travel to the country to escape the psychic pressures of the city can be rejuvenating for me, and international travel, in these post 9-11 days, is fraught with so many problems because I don't fit into the "normal" boxes that the experience in-between the trip there and back is more than outweighed by the trauma caused by security theatre. There are some places I would like to see, but I will happily wait a decade or two until the current insanity dies down and decisions about security are no longer being made by people who tend towards the stupid end of the spectrum because of their limited understanding of human beings ... which is an assessment a reasonable person would agree with :) For more on this, see here, here (especially the comments about security theatre; also, try following aviation safety generally for a little while, and then assess your perception of security risks ... ) and here (which I particularly agree with, having had some sexual assaults in my life).

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr
(Pronounced "new-MYTH-ear")

Notes:
  1. Episode 2 of Season Three: Lost Weekend

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: astral travel, common sense, responsibility, sexuality, world

First published: Sunnudagr, 20th March, 2011

Last edited: Sunday, 20th March, 2011

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Post No. 248 - Want to be a knight in shining armour?

So ... ever feel the urge to be a bit of a heroine? Or even a hero, since boys can do that sort of stuff too, and we musn't discriminate against them ... and then there's all the others who are bigendered, intersex, etc, etc, etc ... :)

Well, maybe you can, from time to time, be sort of a knight in shining armour - a psychic one.

I've posted before about the problems of uncontrolled interactions between people [1], well, for someone with enough (psychic) sensitivity, some of these provide opportunities to help. As an example, I was in a chemist today, waiting for a script for my partner. While I was waiting, one of the shop assistants took a call from a customer, and it became very clear that the person on the other end was dumping quite a bit of frustration on her - the assistant. So ... I put a shield on the line to deflect the negativity away from the shop assistant, checked the person on the other end of line and saw what looked like negative plugs in his ears, pulled them out, and then the conversation seemed to go far more pleasantly - and effectively - for all concerned.

(Coincidentally, I was given a discount on the script ... I said nothing about what I had done, but maybe she felt the benefit on some level?)

This is something which can be done in other situations as well. I'm going to draw a few illustrations, and add them to this post in the hopefully near future.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr
(pronounced "new-MYTH-ear")

Notes:
  1. See here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.
This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: Psychic attack, protection, responsibility, personal responsibility, helping others,

First published: Laugadagr, 19th March, 2011

Last edited: Saturday, 19th March, 2011

Post No. 247 - Tensegrity and the Earth Star Chakra

One of the things which Castaneda writes about is a form of exercise called "tensegrity". These exercises are claimed to re-suspend energy which has seeped down to the lower point of our aura. Well, I've tried the exercises, and find they do increase my energy. However, I do not consider that the explanation given is correct: what I consider is happening is that, much as Tai Chi and yoga can stimulate chakras, the movements of tensegrity are stimulating the Earth Star Chakra - which is, perhaps, a very appropriate chakra for a shamanka/shaman to seek to stimulate ...

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr
(pronounced "new-MYTH-ear")

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: shamanism, chakras, Castenada, tensegrity,

First published: Laugadagr, 19th March, 2011

Last edited: Saturday, 19th March, 2011

Post No. 246 - Is this the beginning of the beginning for the UN?

Is the United Nation's decisive action with regard to Libya, which led to the backdown by Gaddafi (see here), the beginning of an era of effectiveness for the UN?

I had an exchange of letters with people at the time of terrible massacres in Rwanda, the Rwandan Genocide, over the ineffectiveness of the so-called peace "keepers" from the UN at the time (who really seemed to me to be no more than observers - and that is still my position: theirs was that I was talking about "peace enforcement", which I disagree with, as the peace "keepers" did nothing effective to keep the peace that I could see), and I know of the terrible evil done by McCarthyism to the fledgling UN, and the failures of the League of Nations ... is this the start of something new, where a tyrant can REALISTICALLY be held accountable?

By the way, away from the area of peace, the UN has done some good work in other areas, developmental areas (for instance, I've helped work on water supplies in Africa as a result of the UN's efforts) - maybe not perfect, but still beneficial.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr
(pronounced "new-MYTH-ear")

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: peace, United Nations,

First published: Laugardagr, 19th March, 2011

Last edited: Saturday, 19th March, 2011

Friday, 18 March 2011

Post No. 245 - Self congratulation and other topics for thought

Recently I was awarded membership grade "Fellow" of the professional institution to which I belong for my day job. To get my parchment for this, I attended a "Fellows Luncheon". A few things struck me at that event:
  1. the expense and/or income from an event with over 400 people attending, most paying more than $80 per head: what happens to that money? How much of the money is left over, given the institution chooses to hold these regular events at a horrendously swanky and expensive place? Is that decision of location based on numbers, or elitism - i.e., wanting somewhere that is upper class?
  2. the guest speaker's talk about preparing for disasters.
Now, I know engineering can improve things in terms of having buildings that are stronger and more resistant to earthquakes, fires, floods, etc, but, ultimately, we can NEVER "beat" Mother Nature. I think designing things to be "better" is great, BUT it is MORE important to have an attitude of respect. If people had had an attitude of respect, maybe fewer houses would be built in flood plains, or in situations of extreme fire risk.

I found the speaker had a somewhat self-congratulatory tone to his speech, and that concerned me. Could it be contributing to an insular group-think? Particularly given the elitist nature of the function?

Here are a few other links which might provide some thought on a range of topics. Remember, just because I write that something is "interesting", does not necessarily mean I either agree with it, or think it is necessarily good, so keep your thinking caps on!

How to talk to a ghost, which is rather brilliant: here.

An interesting programme on ABC Radio National's Encounter programme about paganism: here.

I read that Britain plans to introduce a "Happiness Index", see here, which - if true - is an excellent idea, and brings to mind the Gross National Happiness Index from Bhutan.

http://snowhawke.wordpress.com/2010/04/17/dude-youre-in-my-space/

From Witchvox:

Spirit and Character, by Rhys Chisnall http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=ukgb2&c=words&id=14449

(Insert Your Name Here) : Vampire Slayer!, by Bob Makransky http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=gtxx&c=words&id=14448

Musings of a Grizzled Warrior, by Ursa http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usks&c=words&id=14450

http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usnj&c=words&id=14346 which contains examples of appalling behaviour by courts, police etc in the USA

http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usga&c=words&id=14452 which makes a good point about individual uniqueness!

http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=uspa&c=words&id=14462 which brings to mind a thought that any coming religion may well not emphasise God over personal behaviour

http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=ustx&c=words&id=14444 which emphasises connection to nature rather than replacing Father God with Mother Goddess

http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=uspa&c=words&id=14259

The Pope has made some sort of decision or statement to try and make clear that Jews were NOT responsible for the death of Christ: see here. On the other hand, an article about the good and bad to be shown in Queensland's recent floods, here, mentions religious fanatics who attribute this to Divine intervention ...

An article on the Crystal links website about "the things we are guided to", here.

Some other links from Crystal links and elsewhere are:

http://www.crystalinks.com/blogginandpersonality.html includes some thoughts on the possible home of Proto-IndoEuropeans ("Aryans")

http://www.crystalinks.com/arkaim.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arkaim

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_archaeoastronomical_sites_by_country

http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/blogs/blunt-instrument/hero-or-villain-neither-hes-an-idiot/20100914-15a0n.html

http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/society-and-culture/the-mind-reader-20100919-15hzh.html

Could this person have actually been possessed or obsessed? See here - and elsewhere on this blog for ways to protect yourself psychically :) (And, for the record, I suspect he probably was NOT possessed)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Exorcism The comments about the prevalence of conventional causation is noteworthy and true!

The Sumerians and the Egyptians by Priestess Jean http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usaz&c=words&id=13674 (which mentions influence of Kurgans)

A Scientist and Magician Speaks on Science and Magick by Once Schooled, Now Solo Mage http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usal&c=words&id=13665

Conducting Paranormal Investigations by Priestess Jean http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usaz&c=words&id=13655

Simple House Cleansing and Warding by Rev. Jennifer "Jay" Bull http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usil&c=words&id=13765

Where Faeries Tread by Christopher Aldridge http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usnc&c=words&id=13717

The Magick of Negativity by Leandra Witchwood http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=uspa&c=words&id=13774

What Does It Mean To Be Pagan in the Age of Darwin? by Gypsy Sidhe http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=iexx&c=words&id=13777

Don't Fear The Dark: A Discussion On Cursing by Ravenix http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=ukgb2&c=words&id=13683

I'm Pagan. I Don't Pray. by Silverwolf Sanctuary http://www.witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usnh&c=words&id=13659

A cautionary note about natural remedies: http://www.theage.com.au/lifestyle/wellbeing/natural-remedies-can-prove-lethal-research-20100208-nnaf.html

Some environment based stories are here, which almost inspired me to describe the press as nongs, but then this journalist is actually probably just doing his job and making sure people know of the implications of policies, and here. This story scotches the claim that Aboriginal fire practices changed the Australian countryside.

Social commentary interest me, so here are a few links that are not psychic-based, but may be of some interest to any who share that interest - feel free to ignore :)

Social inequality is eating away at America's soul http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/inequality-is-eating-away-at-americas-soul-20110103-19dqc.html

Facebook, beginning with a story about a young person who has chosen NOT to be connected, here, (Yay!), and another story with a bit of a salutary warning here. And a link about Twitter, which I think is a bit harsh: all forms of communication have their benefits and their disadvantages - including formal writing and newspapers, phone (e.g. here), etc ... Here is an article about the dangers of on-line friends: personally, I think on-line "friendships" should reflect the shades of grey that exist in real life, with close friends, friends and acquaintances.
Here is an article about the implications of the shut down of the Internet during the recent Egyptian uprising.

Some links, for and against, "Generation Y" here, here and here. (Dare I say truth can be on both sides, and maybe both sides here are guilty of generalising - of assuming that everyone is a group is as per the stereotype - one way or another - that is being sought to be applied to the group? The third link seems to me to tend towards this view ... )

Another interesting link on the whole subject of attitudes towards the young is here. A more distressing link about a situation where a youngster died as a result of a police shooting is here, but here is a story about a more positive, interesting (quirky?) young person (who I suspect I may not agree with politically, but never mind that). Another link about attitudes in conflicts comes from Israel - here. Another article here argues that we need, in general, greater self discipline (or self control). Yet another set of attitudes around dedication to work vs. dedication to family are triggered by this story here. See here for some thoughts on empires, orientalism and intelligence ... here is an article about forgetting manners on public transport ... I've heard that one before, but I do consider social attitudes have changed over recent decades and that may lead what some perceive as a loss of manners ... and there is, of course, the issue of an actual lack of consideration on the part of some people, but that's been around as long as people have. Here's another link claiming parents should "grow a digital spine" ... here's another one from a judge commending parents for turning in their son for a crime ... Here's a more positive link about changing attitudes.

People can be afraid of change: that seems to me to be a significant part of the reason that the junta in Burma has refused to free Aung San Suu Kyi (see here).

Some more links on "AFL girl", who I have posted about previously, and the generally deplorable behaviour all round shown: here, here, here and here, but remember this here.
And a link on royal pre-nuptial agreements ... here.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr
(pronounced "new-MYTH-ear")

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: attitudes, society, Christianity, Judaism, happiness, rescue, protection,

First published: Frysdagr, 18th March, 2011

Last edited: Friday, 18th March, 2011

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Post No. 244 - But they must be better than me ... they speak so well!

One of the problems I have had at times through my life is thinking other people were better, in some way, than me - when they weren't. This is often tied up with verbal skills, or "sounding smart" - when I went to Uni, being young, naive and - let's face it - somewhat stupid (owing to a lack of life experience :) ), I used to think the older students sounded suave, sophisticated, and intelligent. Basically, however, they were intellectually arrogant - or, as I would tend to say colloquially, up themselves.

Unfortunately, it took me a little while to learn that. Now, I have no hesitation in telling graduates and engineering students that their degree is simply a Licence to START learning ...

This self put down has been a problem in other areas of my life as well - for instance, holding off on relationships before I transitioned, ostensibly because the other people were better than me. In the magical world, it has taken me some time to realise just how much I learned and developed from things like Lobsang Rampa's books, and being a student at ASPECTS,, and to realise that I should not hold back.

One of the problems I encounter when trying to not hold back, though, is occasionally a difference in ability with words: particularly in the magical/spiritual world, people can come out with pompous rubbish at times, but I may not have the words to fight them in any sort of useful way. I particularly find this when in discussions with Buddhists who have a Western ethnicity: the conversation is generally along the lines of which school you've been to, what mantra you use, etc, etc, etc - all very valuable in its own way, but when I ask people like this (which was the last last time I ran into someone like this, when helping to organise a queer spirituality conference in 2005) "How are you a different person for being a Buddhist?", they can't say.

This line of thought cropped up for me again today, when I was reading today's article about the kid in a school who snapped and fought back against a tormentor - the video has gone viral, but the article I am referring to is here. This in turn builds on an earlier article here. [4]

I have to say, today's article has got it all pretty right: I know violence is wrong, but I am so glad to see the kid stand up for himself and, in the course of doing so, actually quite probably teach the other kid a lesson [1]. Yes, he could have killed the attacker, yes there are better ways to handle this, BUT those better ways do NOT include:
  • telling a teacher (my experience of this from Grade 4 is that this can be quite terrifying - and one of the people quoted in the earlier article has the good sense to say this option does not have good results);
  • telling the bully how being the victim of the bully "makes" one feel (that is just reinforcing the bully's actions by showing that the desired result is happening);
  • turning and walking away (as today's article points out, that's an invitation to get king hit in the back of the neck).
Above all else, it often does NOT involve learning "verbal skills to deflect the bullying", which is a load of absolute rubbish spouted by some "expert". For Goddess' sake, verbal skills are not natural to everyone! For those people who can learn the verbal techniques, great! For those who cannot, FIND SOMETHING APPROPRIATE!!!! (It all reminds me a little of someone I know who was against competitive sport, but had to admit that her son flourished when he took up footy.) Also, verbal "skills" can simply be changing one form of aggression for another, a form that too often has its inherent violence denied by its advocates.

Today's article ends with two words of advice: "judo lessons". If that is what works, if that is what makes the kid concerned feel confident enough to deal with the bullying effectively, then great - so be it.

For someone like me, it's learning about spiritual and psychic matters: those techniques DO NOT NECESSARILY WORK FOR OTHERS.

One size does not fit all, and being able to verbally out-joust others does not make one right any more than being able to aggravate others or slam dunk or otherwise physically out-joust others.

One of the other key points here is, just as the occurrence of disasters is a test to see if others care enough to get involved, the spectators/witnesses around bullying also have a key part to play - they are the third leg of the bullying triangle I posted about once before. [2]

PS - I have been rather busy doing spirit rescue [3] work as a result of the terrible earthquake in Japan. Interestingly enough, I am also finding I am rescuing people from the earthquake in Christchurch and in Sichuan in 2008. I also find, by the way, that some people who are stuck in a cloud of denial (which is well described in Lobsang Rampa's book "Three Lives"), sometimes get jolted out of their cloud of denial or confusion when their body is discovered ... so my rescue work continues throughout the "search and recovery" phase. If I get time, I may post a ritual which others could try using. One thought which came to me today is that, if there is something in the ritual that you do not understand or know how to do, then - provided you have good enough protection set up - you could ask your positive Guides to do whatever it is that is meant to be done, and wait patiently. I did this in my early days in circle in the 80s at times - for instance, I once saw everyone pointing the palms of their hands towards someone who was upset, and did so and asked to do whatever it was they were doing - and found my hands getting warmer as healing started to flow ... (I then panicked and stopped, but that's another story :) ).

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr
(pronounced "new-MYTH-ear")

Notes:
  1. Learning cannot all be achieved by positive means: some negative experience is, unfortunately, necessary because of the lack of evolution of us lot living on this planet.
  2. I sometimes do some fiction writing (don't worry - I won't give up my day job :) ), and one story I have in mind will examine the similarities and differences between merging families and company taleovers and invading other countries ...
  3. See my previous posts, including here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here.
  4. More links: here, which talks about the challenges in having an effective anti-bullying policy, here, on a different bullying incident (where a father takes his bullying kids to the police, and others will be added as I find them :)
This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: aggression, violence, school, children, learning styles, education, communication, personal characteristics,

First published: Thorsdagr, 17th March, 2011

Last edited: Sunday, 20th March, 2011

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Post No. 243 - Japanese earthquake

I hope everyone is doing what they can to help those affected by the Japanese earthquake, whether it is light a candle, wish them well mentally, or rituals with rescue. These times are both tragic for those directly affected, and a direct test of everyone who knows of it.

As a digression, I am mildly precognitive, and the build up to this 'quake has seen me in quite a downer of a mood ....

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: disasters, caring, love, Japan, personal characteristics,

First published: Laugardagr, 12th March, 2011

Last edited: Saturday, 12th March, 2011

Monday, 7 March 2011

Post No. 242 - Extraterrestial life

Interesting article in today's edition of The Age (here) reporting that a scientists claims to have found simple forms of life in a meteorite. Not proven as yet - this is now being subject to the scientific scrutiny that the recent report I posted about concerning possible scientific "proof" of precognition is also being given. It will be interesting to see how these both go ... here's hoping the media reports on what happens!

Mind you, I still have reservations about science ...

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: aliens, science,

First published: Manadagr, 7th March, 2011

Last edited: Monday, 7th March, 2011

Post No. 241 - What am I here for?

Something Lobsang Rampa mentions (in Chapters of Life) is that the coming World Leader may only reach 1,000 people. I've speculated in some past posts (here and here) about a possible new religion ... if something is to come, maybe I am helping prepare the way for some of those 1,000 people ...

Just an idle speculation - normal service will now resume :)

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: evolution, religion,

First published: Manadagr, 7th March, 2011

Last edited: Monday, 7th March, 2011

Post No. 240 - A Cargo Cult of Love

Recently I posted about (in part) a former friend who, in her late 20s/early 30s, used to host dinner parties as a pretence of being mature. Well, I think there may be something similar about love - in all its forms, not just the agape type.

Every person on this planet has a soul - no matter how mean the person, they still have a soul. That means they know, in some small way, in some small part of their being, of the absolute love, joy, peace and pleasure which can and will surround them when they pass to the higher astral (not the lower astral, which is where many earthbound people wind up).

Knowing of that, in the same way that tribes in Papua-New Guinea carved and worshipped planes to bring more of them and the plane's gifts, and many people act out the perceived trappings and benefits (never the responsibilities!) of being mature to try and claim those benefits, and many people put on and parade the trappings and results of agape love or of being in love, and think that that is the same thing.

It isn't.

It's like putting up a few flimsy sheets of cardboard, and decorating them as if they are a house. Not only will it fall down when there is an earthquake, it will fall down if there is a gentle breeze or even too many trappings, too many decorations.

Houses - and relationships - need solid foundations. Relationships need respect, responsibility, communication - not just the pleasant feelings that go with being in love. (As I write the first draft of this, I am celebrating my anniversary with my partner.) So does improving the state of this world by increasing the amount of agape love that everyone lives with - everyone, not just those in the developed world.

In terms of the agape form of love, what is needed is not a cargo cult approach of lots of pretty music, incense and meditation to create the nice feelings that go with being in a world of love, what is needed is people who are disciplined enough to do the hard work of transforming this planet and all its people into something better. We are now in the Age of Kali: we need to start dragging ourselves out. I've posted previously about the sorts of work that are needed, such as clearing the thought forms of negativity from the last Century of Wars, of addressing world poverty and hunger, of changing the attitudes of greed in the developed world that result in many in the West creating their own hell rather than allowing themselves to be grateful for less, and allow themselves to work on themselves as people to be happy.

Yes, it is possible to cut oneself off from the world, and blindly hypnotise oneself into being happy despite the misery of billions of others. It is possible, but it is better, in my view, to be evolved, to be spiritually mature, and then work at helping to transform this planet we all share.

(Mind you, some people need solitude; many of those people, however, people such as myself, use the solitude to either (a) make themself better able to work for a better world, or (b) use the solitude to work psychically for a better world.)

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: love, personal responsibility, personal characteristics, responsibility, maturity,

First published: Manadagr, 7th March, 2011

Last edited: Monday, 7th March, 2011

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Post No. 239 - Random thoughts ...

Just a few more random thoughts - on asceticism, art, getting to know one's parallels/subconscious, forgiveness, the benefits of passing over, change vs. learning, and leavening civilisations ...

Asceticism
One of the things which used to be portrayed about Eastern spirituality when I was growing up was that it allegedly favoured asceticism - "denial of the body" through discipline, and forcing the body to endure rigours such as protracted fasting, and living with very little. Well, I now know better - there are those who choose to practise austerity and a rigorous asceticism (e.g. saddhus) - and possibly that is exactly what they need, but they are not the be-all and end-all of the matter: many Eastern people genuinely practise a spiritual life whilst living their equivalent of a "normal" lifestyle.

Where I think a relative form of asceticism has a place is in the lifestyles of us in the West, in the First World. Many of us seem to want "things", and our houses are now much bigger than those of our grandparents, and all of us consumes the limited resources that the Earth has. My opinion is that, as part of being a spiritual being, we should seek to live as materially simple a life as we can. That shows respect and caring (dare I say "love") for the world we live on.

In the four years I was at University, I moved 33 times. As a result, for some decades I had a rule that I would only own enough to fit into a single trailer so I could move easily and readily. That is a rule which is harder to follow here in Victoria, as in Queensland many places are rented furnished, which is not so in Victoria (so I also have to fit fridge and bed, for example, on the trailer). It is also harder with a family, cats, reference books, and my crystals and other magical tools ... but I still try to follow the principle of not consuming unnecessarily out of love for this planet as a spiritual act.

Also, there is an element of choice here: if asceticism is forced because one is living in poverty, then it will not be of any spiritual value. See Maslow's Heirarchy of Needs, which I have mentioned in previous posts (here, and in here).

Art
This speculation was spurred by watching The L-Word. What is the purpose of art? I've heard in recent years the view that the purpose of art is to provoke a response. I disagree - especially musical art.

I used to think that art is about appreciating beauty more - not in the sense of portraying those who the media claim are beautiful people, but things like being able to portray the beauty in everyday people, or the beauty of spirit inside one who has been disfigured (perhaps by an explosion, for instance).

Now, I tend to phrase it a little more broadly, and say that art is about increasing our appreciation of life. To me, much of that is about being shown a beauty I had not seen before, but it may, from time to time, also include something which is challenging or provocative.

I also consider that the opinion of what is art to be subjective, not objective. That means something may be considered by most of the billions of other people on this planet but not by me, and we are both right :)

Getting to know one's parallels/unconscious
It might be useful to describe how to go about this from the point of view of being a totally raw novice, with little experience or development of skill. If I found myself back in that situation, I would probably do something along the lines of the following:
  1. Ask, every night before going to sleep for at least a month, to practise in sleep state for the exercises I was about to try (this request goes to your Guides/Higher Self (Overself)/Patron Deities).
  2. For the last week of that month, add to the request by also lighting a candle where it will not cause a fire (make sure there are no candles, that it is on/in fireproof containers, is a small candle, etc).
  3. In the first fortnight after the month of preparation, begin by focusing my attention on all the sensations, emotions and thoughts I was encountering, with a view to developing my awareness and sensitivity (see this post). I would increase this from an initial 5 minutes to an hour, gradually.
  4. During the second fortnight, I would set up a protective circle before doing this, and open the circle at the end. In the second week, I would also add doing a ritual to invoke the energies of the Qabbalistic Sphere of Yesod.
  5. During the third fortnight, I would add to the ritual, invocation of Yesod and a shortened check of awareness (say 10 to 20 minutes) by then playing various guided meditation tapes (that I had pre-listened to in a normal state of consciousness so I knew what they contained, to make sure there were no suggestion that were disharmonious to me or my principles), again aiming to get this up to around an hour long session. In the second week of this fortnight, I would also experiment with various incenses to see which ones seemed to me to be giving a heightened state of awareness or increased sensitivity. (All the while during these fortnights I would be continuing the request and candle when going to bed.)
  6. Finally, I would aim to either meditate, or pre-tape a guided meditation, with a view to changing my awareness and becoming aware of influences and interactions from my subconscious/my parallels.
Of course, for that to be meaningful I also need to post more about the invocation rituals and guided meditation - which doesn't fit into this post. The Qabbalistic ritual is an adaptation of the fuller version of the "Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram" which I posted here (for simplicity, I left out the visualisation of the Archangels).

Finding out more about your parallels can be useful, as many past lives that we look at may actually be of our parallels, who are, effectively, another part of us and, via our shared unconscious, influence us as we influence them.

Lobsang Rampa has some good comments on the unconscious in "Candlelight".

Forgiveness
Further to my recent post on this, the film "Red Dust", which covers the Truth and Reconcialiation Commission in South Africa, is worth looking at.

Dying can lead to resolution of mysteries ...
One of the things about dying is that one views one's life. In the course of this, and by dint of the greater psychic awareness one has inherently as a result of being in the astral, it may be quite possible for one to find out what is behind mysteries that one was plagued by in the physical. Say, for instance, someone lost their child to a violent crime and the criminal was never found, nor the body found (as has happened in one case here in the 80s): when the grieving parents die, they will be reunited with the child, and they will have a chance to resolve the mystery (unless they have some truly extraordinarily bad karmic debt).

So .. if you find yourself thinking "it's a shame so-and-so didn't find out about X before she/he/ze died", don't - they will find out :)

Is change a better word than learning?
In the field of spirituality, one often is told that one's purpose here is to learn: could a better word be "change" - as in, "change for the better"?

If I think about something such as ... say, helping to organise an LGBTIQ spirituality conference (as I have done in the past, and hope to do so again for MidSumma 2013), I can say that I guess I have learned things like trusting myself more, I have acquired more experience, etc - but if I was to try writing a list of what I had learned, I would struggle. If, on the other hand, I was to try writing a list of how I had changed, I would fly through it - I am stronger, I am more experienced at X, Y and Z, I know more about A, B and C, etc, etc, etc.

So ... is "change for the better" more appropriate than "learning"?

I think it is for me - how about you, dear Reader? :)

One other thought comes to mind here: the issue of balance. Often this is thought of in terms of karmic balance, but there is also the issue of seeing "both sides of the coin", so to speak. You MUST have lives as male and female, for example, to enable you to evolve; you must also have lives of poverty and riches, before you can evolve.

There are other personal sequences where people often try to seek a balance by, more or less, going from one form of extremism to another. Hence, for instance, I have read (and don't actually agree with) a suggestion that Hitler would come back as a vehement preacher in the next life ...

In my case, I have tended to try to balance a life in the military by a life in a religious order. I have tried to balance out a hedonistic lifestyles in one century and piratical life the century before with a disciplined British navy life in the 1800s (I was no-one known or famous, by the way). I tried to balance some lives where I was a compliant, obediant female in the 1700s with a more wilful life in the early 1900s - a bit like teenagers as they are stereotypically thought of today, perhaps :) Unfortunately, going against my father's wishes led to a path that I regret and am still paying for to this day [1] ... so, there is a time, a place and a way to seek to ba;ance things out: better yet, do not fall into the trap of being extremist in the first place :)

Leavening civilisations
Something I am thinking about at the moment is Rampa's comments (in "The Hermit" and "Tibetan Sage") that the "Gardeners of the Earth" (i.e. benevolent aliens seeking to help the evolution of spiritual life on Earth - see the notes in this post) occasionally try to "leaven" the quality of sentient life on the Earth by introducing new civilisations. I have not reached any conclusions about this yet, just mentioning that it is something I am cogitating upon - especially when I see people like an ex's son have six kids, who he is raising in an alcoholic, criminal (well, formerly criminal - I don't know if he still is), violent (again - formerly) environment. The last time I had contact with him, he had a new girlfriend who appeared to be sorting him out ...

but then I compare this with the people who are wonderful parents, and note that they inevitably have fewer kids. Will the world evolve to be a better place under these circumstances? Maybe that depends on whether or not the education system will pick up the slack ...

As I said, I don't know one way or the other ... it is just one of the things currently occupying my mind and my meditations - along with things such as should I try to improve my ability to channel names, which I tend to block because of the expectations that get put on mediums to channel such details instead of the person being helped getting metaphorically off their backside and sharing the responsibility for a good reading by doing their part (such as preparing ... ).

Greed = glamour
One of the main ills of the world, in my opinion, is greed - wanting more than one needs. This is something I also refer to as materialism or being materialistic (probably the more precise reference!), or consumerism. One aspect of this is being sucked in by advertising (including the portrayal of lifestyles on TV), which Alice Bailey refers to as "glamour", being caught like a moth to the glitzy lights of what appears glamorous. (Bailey even wrote a book about the problem ... )

Control through phone messages
Something which struck me as my partner and I continued watching the L Word (which I posted some initial impressions of - not changed as yet! - here) was the control exerted over people by leaving short, useless messages.

A couple of times towards the end of Season One Tina left messages for Bette where she was clearly upset asking here to call, but not saying what could have happened. That left Bette the potential to think Tina could have miscarried, which could have caused Bette to panic or have unnecessary stress. A better approach would have been to say something along the lines of "I have been threatened by a sperm donor's current girlfriend" - which is something Tina didn't do even when Bette did ring. It is important to get emotions out and expressed, yes, but it is also important to have consideration for partners. Did Tina fear Bette would not interrupt her work to call her? Given the unbalanced attitudes Bette had, that could have been the case - but better to know that and deal with it, than to try to exert a form of control over one's partner.

This sort of consideration applies more broadly: I detest getting short, useless messages "call me" from work colleagues, when if they said something useful such as "call me about a potential bid X", I can assess that against my other work priorities, and call it in the order that is best for the company - which is not necessarily best for the ego of the person leaving the message. They think that, by being vague, I will call to find out what it is all about, whereas I generally choose to ignore such messages or put them down at the bottom of the pile. It doesn't take much effort to have some basic manners and consideration.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

Notes:
  1. An ex-partner and my current partner were on the opposite side to me in the Second World War, by the way: there are some interesting dynamics in these situations, as well some - in these cases - karmic balancing, as well as love and continuation of relationships from past lives.

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: lifestyles, asceticism, art, Qabbalah, Yesod, unconscious, forgiveness, death, growth, evolution, greed, glamour, materialism, consumerism, Alice A Bailey, Maslow,

First published: Thorsdagr, 3rd March, 2011

Last edited: Sunday, 6th March, 2011

Post No. 238 - The L-Word

I have been spending today looking after my partner while she is unwell, and we've been watching Season One of The L-Word. I'm glad (most of) the lesbians, bisexuals and trans people I know in real life are more "together" than the naive nongs that the characters have come across as so far.

I mean ... really, Bette: you're gallery is being vandalised, your customers hassled, and you are even being harangued and threatened at home - yet you don't call the police? And the group session that Bette and Tina go to! My partner has almost finished a social work degree, and she had some very apt comments on the mistakes being made in that group. Not to mention Alice putting her chart up on the Internet??? Wow - must be no privacy laws in that little universe ...

A lot of the other behaviour is akin to high school schoolyard dramatics. (I would also describe the behaviour as emotionally "self indulgent" in the shamanistic sense - see Castenada's books for more on that.)

It would also be great for the characters (I am aware the actors in real life are very different people!) to learn a few words like ... polyamory, or ethics (and for the gay characters to learn that the word bisexual is real, and represents a valid choice - although I must say that many of them do accept that, and the straight characters tend to be the sinners on this aspect). It's quite a shame, as, in my life, the most ethical people I know are from the LGBT I Q and polyamorous communities - far more so than more I know from various spiritual/psychic communities. (Many activists can be very ethical, also.)

I can understand the LGBTIQ community apparently not liking Jenny, and I was very surprised to read that Ilene Chaiken based Jenny upon parts of herself as a young lesbian.

From a spiritual point of view, I consider:
  • all intimate relationships should be consensual, non-possessive, based on love - and conducted as mature adults;
  • no person has the right to force someone else to be something against their will if it is not doing any harm - which is what parents and other refusing to accept someone because of their sexuality or gender identity are doing (possibly out of embarrassment);
  • no society or group has the right to force someone else to be something against their will if it is not doing any harm - which is what the Christian fundamentalists as portrayed in Season One (who I would describe as having a very immature version of "spirituality") are trying to do (please note not all Christians are like that - some, such as MCC, are actually quite accepting of LGBTIQ people - and others do a fair job of some parts of social activism, particularly in South America);
  • most people have some responsibility to make an effort to stand up for themselves: sitting quietly and taking verbal abuse is rarely something that would be considered spiritual (the exception to this is people who have suffered a lot of abuse, such the victims of domestic violence or torture, or massive amounts of discrimination [which applies to many races who are not white, such as Kooris in Australia, or African-Americans or First Nations people in the USA, and often applies to many LGBTIQ people, particularly outside the Western world], as some such people can literally be beaten into submission - in which case collective responsibility becomes active: remember that word "activist" I used a few paragraphs ago? Actually, this has a role anyway, as we all contribute to the world we live in), and one should be aware of the saying that we train others how to treat us [1];
  • everyone should seek to be all that they can be, and for some, that is having a lot of sex, for others it is pursuing creativity, for others a family, for others reclusiveness, etc, etc, etc: one size does NOT fit all.
It's good, however, to see the range of relationships being dealt with as a normal part of everyday life, without either patronising or trying to make such relationships appear so rare that they need lots of comment - and it is good to see femme lesbians being portrayed (well, they are in relation to me, at any rate :) ).

So ... now for a coffee and the next episode.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

Notes:
  1. There is an interesting example of this in Sheelagh Rouse's book "Twenty Five Years with T. Lobsang Rampa": when Lobsang Rampa takes his synopsis of "The Third Eye" to a literary agent, the agent tries to intimidate Dr Rampa and avoid committing to reading the synopsis, who responds by saying calmly that the synopsis is his property, and he will return in a week to collect it (on pages 51-52). I have always admired people who are unflappable in that way (my word), and have tried to develop that characteristic in myself).

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: sexuality, purpose, discrimination, society, Christianity, extremism, self indulgence,

First published: Thorsdagr, 3rd March, 2011

Last edited: Thursday, 3rd March, 2011

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Post No. 237 - Some thoughts on a carbon price

An article in today's edition of "The Age" said that setting a price on carbon would change our whole lifestyle. Exactly - that's what it's meant to do! I've posted about this previously (won't try to find the links now), and change is something we have to do, in my opinion, for environmental (including sustainability, which is so much more than just looking at greenhouse gases and climate change) and other reasons - the other including social justice and spirituality.

The article is here if anyone wishes to read it.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: environment, climate change, responsibility,

First published: Wodansdagr, 2nd March, 2011

Last edited: Wednesday, 2nd March, 2011

Post No. 236 - Welcome to Iuk

Welcome to the Kulin people season of Iuk, the eel season (although it may actually be argued to start in a couple of weeks, at the equinox). Based onm the descriptions at the linked sites, I looked for Manna Gum flowers when I was in the hills last week, but without success. Based on an attempt I made to do a ritual based on the Kulin people seasons (see here), this could be a time when "flows" or fluidity or movement, whether of emotion or energy or other, eases tensions that have built up over summer.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: Kulin, indigenous, seasons, rituals, Iuk,

First published: Wodansdagr, 2nd March, 2011

Last edited: Wednesday, 2nd March, 2011

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Post No. 235 - Disasters and collective & personal responsibility

I just listened to (most of) a great segment on the ABC Radio National's Background Briefing programme on disasters. The programme made some points that I agree with:
  • a rigid, hierarchical military structure can alienate the very community it is seeking to help;
  • disaster professionals MUST take the wish of people to help into account, and engage them BEFORE the disaster happens;
  • we need to take personal responsibility for being prepared (I recall the cyclone warnings about preparing for cyclones when I was a kid, and compare that with the abysmal situation now when virtually no warning is given - presumably to avoid scaring away tourists);
  • we need to take collective responsibility for some of our stupidity - such as building in flood or fire prone areas, or doing so in inappropriate ways;
  • we all need to accept that we are part of a collective, and things like "greenies" railing against firefighters for clearing land, and firefighters railing against "greenies" for not allowing said firefighters to turn forests into a barren desert do not help (no prizes for guessing which side of the argument I am on - BUT I do consider those who choose to live in fire prone areas should not necessarily get help from fire fighters if there is a fire: take the consequences for your decisions!);
  • communication needs to be understandable - plain English, yes, but also information that is meaningful, not "Xm height at point Y on the River".
The segment is well worth having a listen to - and a think. It is called "Mismanaging Disasters", and can be found here.

Love, light, hugs and blessings

Gnwmythr

This post's photo is yet to be posted.

Tags: personal responsibility, responsibility, society, nature, disasters, collective,

First published: Tysdagr, 1st March, 2011

Last edited: Thursday, 3rd March, 2011