Thursday, September 3, 2009

Catching up...

Well hello again. I've not been blogging lately, as I feel I've been deep in my personal alchemical laboratory, tinkering away at improving myself. Its been fairly intensive and demanding work so all my attention has been focussed inward recently. I wanted to wait until I came out the other side of this process before blogging again.

So here I am, and with a new month which also brings a new season - Spring for us down under - it feels like I have indeed finally emerged out of the wintery tomb. From the moment the winter solstice hit back in June, I feel like I've been under the hammer, being reshaped, reforged, remade into a better version of me, with many of the old habits and vices eliminated, and the hope of a brighter life at the end of the tunnel.

I feel really grateful that I've had what feels like a lot of spiritual guidance around me at this time. I pray a lot, not in a religious-specific way, but to ascended Masters and Archangels, Michael being the angel I seem to gravitate toward the most. I believe all the ascended and angelic beings are looking out for our Earth at this time, doing the good work of regulating the emotional atmosphere of our planet and keeping it all in balance. For myself I definitely feel my prayers for self-improvement have been answered, and in the most subtle yet powerful of ways that its hard to express in words.

I am in my mid-thirties now, and like a lot of young people I certainly went through a time of partying, drinking, and burning the candle at both ends, as my dad would say. Now more than anything I want to live a more pure, happier life. And its hard to live a happy life when one is polluting oneself with too much that is harmful.

I guess what I'm saying is I've learned very much to value myself more ~ my clarity of mind, my purity of spirit, balance in my emotions, and lightness in my body. I still enjoy good eating, but I find that I just don't require alcohol anymore. I just don't miss it! The last couple of times I did drink, I only had to have one glass of wine and I already felt like crap. Its just something I feel I've grown out of now, and I'm thankful for that.

The theme most in focus lately though has been my mind and emotions and the link between them. Specifically, learning to spot the negative thoughts engaged in by the ego-self, which I've now learned are always lies, illusions. Not only that but when we feed into the cycle of negativity, we keep ourselves locked in a prison of negative emotion, which then generates further negative thought. What I've realised is that the truth  is so much better than the lies of the ego; that in truth I have access to all the inner bliss and happiness I could ever need. Naturally its an ongoing learning process, to spot the illusory and promote the true, but as I say I feel I've seen the light at the end of the tunnel and I feel much encouraged in my process.

There's no doubt that just as harsh chemicals pollute the body, harsh and unforgiving thoughts pollute the mind and soul. There is such a drive in me now to get purified, because the truth is, its my body, and my mind and soul. If I don't look after them, I fail myself at the first test of integrity. So now I am more determined than ever to safeguard these things, which really are the first point of wealth that I possess. With a pure mind and spirit I can enjoy all the natural bliss that life has to offer.

I just want to say again how grateful I am to the heavenly beings who look out for us all. Thank you! May heavenly blessings be with everyone.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Well how is everybody feeling after Wednesday's eclipse?

For me certainly this was an intense week, with the focus on home & family issues. The solar eclipse fell on degree 29 of tropical sign Cancer, and the 29th degree of a sign is understood to be a "critical" degree. The 29th is the final degree of a sign, so its as if the energy of this eclipse was tying up the loose end of family affairs, trying to bring a resolution to some nagging or ongoing concern.

From my own perspective this involved various improvements and works being carried out in our apartment building, which threatened to be quite disruptive, but my partner and I managed to keep a positive perspective and refrained from reacting with any knee-jerk negativity. This happily made things smoother than they might have been, had I given in to my overly intense urge to act out!

Meanwhile my partner's family was the focus of some interesting issues. She has 3 sisters and 1 brother, and for a while there the sisters almost coerced my partner and her younger brother into buying a joint present for their father's 70th (he's a Leo). We instinctively knew this was a bad idea, and subsequent events proved us right. Things really came to a head on the very day of the eclipse, and our intuition was vindicated and the joint present is no longer going ahead.

This eclipse was a real education in the energies that can be at work. It was a solar eclipse, meaning the moon passed in front of the Sun from our perspective here on Earth. So the Sun and Moon were conjunct, as I mentioned in the sign Cancer. Cancer is said to govern many areas of life but perhaps most notably women, children, home, family, clannishness, and strong emotion. I feel grateful that my studies of astrology and other esoteric fields gave me a good dose of objectivity so I could navigate these rather tricky waters with a balanced attitude.

It's so handy to know when these big astrological events are coming up ~ it's like having a heads-up from the cosmos as to what to expect on a particular day. It's been a fairly full-on year for astrological events so I feel especially grateful to have the inside scoop so to speak!

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Sun rings "like a bell"

Recently I read the following article that talks about the strange lack of sunspots coming from the Sun lately:

Mystery of missing sunspots solved

19 June 2009

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Update on work

This post is a sequel to May Musings, and I'm glad to say is about a much more pleasant topic.

Almost 2 years ago now I was looking for an alternative to office work, and I decided to register as an extra. An extra is someone who might appear in the background of a TV or print ad, a movie, or a TV show. I called the agency a few times after that, but they had nothing at the time and I did not hear from them again ~ until a couple of weeks ago.

They were trying to track me down because my old mobile number is defunct and they had an assignment for me. I was so excited to hear I was required for a photo shoot for an ad campaign. I was to go to a local cinema and take part in a 3-hour photo shoot for a series of print ads for Cityrail.

This had been a dream of mine for ages. I'd worked in commercial radio, met musicians and spoken to TV personalities, and had been a musician back in my 20's. Now I was finally getting the chance to work in entertainment and be an extra.

It was the easiest three hours work I'd ever done. I sat in the back half of a cinema with 7 other extras / actors, with my arm around a strange woman pretending to comfort her while watching a scary movie. It was so much fun! There was a really good atmosphere on the "set", with lots of laughs as the photographer and director tried to get the right poses out of the talent.

It was an experience I would definitely like to repeat. I plan to register with a couple more agencies soon. This time I hope I don't have to wait another 18 months to get an assignment!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

New blog

For some time now, I've been running a separate blog on Wordpress, where I talk about the various celebrities sightings that I seem to have in my local area of eastern Sydney.

I've finally started transferring the contents of this blog here to Blogger, with the rest of my writings. It's a fun read ~ take a look and see which of your favourite celebrities you can spot!

And view the original at:



Friday, June 12, 2009

Obama is not the answer - you are

Hello again gentle readers

Lately it's become trendy to revile Barack Obama in the blogosphere. When he was elected there was general public euphoria ~ now it seems the honeymoon is over, and because instant Utopia has seemingly not emerged, the public are gradually turning on the man.

Can I urge a little balance here people. Frankly I too was glad to see him elected ~ not because he was any kind of saviour, but he was at least a well-spoken, articulate man of apparently, at least, some sensitivity. Surely it's better we have someone in office who is interested in the future as opposed to simply maintaining a worn-out status quo.

My view is simply this ~ you wanted him to solve all your problems, now you are blaming him for what is still not fixed. Can I suggest that as the man himself said in his inaugural speech, it really is up to each one of us ~ yep, that's right - you! ~ to address our personal and collective problems. I am not advocating the radical individualism of the past. I am reminding us all that we have the power in our own hands to improve our personal reality.

The way to do this, in my humble opinion, is to realise that much of what we do is dysfunctional. This is not to condemn anyone, but rather to help. We need to stop trying to solve our problems at the level of the mind ~ because it's our overactive, self-deceptive, monkey-chattering minds that ARE the problem.

More and more, I find I am craving a better way of living ~ not, in the first instance, a "better life", which is the well-worn egoic mind's perpetual external-seeking of something "better". I crave for myself more objectivity, more inner stability both of my mind and persona. I really feel I need to get out of the way; to be the observer rather than the reactor. As I cultivate this inner observer more, I can see that others sense the change in me. I cease to have any particular agenda, therefore I get back from the universe a positive reaction, smiles from strangers, and a greater sense of inner peace.

All this can be done while being active in the world. We just need to come back to square one ~ which is our very self. Let's tear down the idea of "my-self"; this entity that needs constant fulfillment and distraction. Let's try to return to the sacred inner source where all our needs are already met.

I am constantly reminded of the words of Eckhart Tolle ~ such simple, nourishing words that being me back to first principles every time. That's what I believe we need right now ~ in a world that wants to take us away from our inner self, let's remember that without our inner self we can never have the truly better quality of life we all crave. Blessings and peace to all


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

May Musings

This post is more of a journal-stroke-musing entry, as I reflect on where I'm at currently.

For a long time I've really struggled to find either suitable or even just ongoing work, not just with the economic climate but really throughout my life since university. I have a lot of interests and fields of study that I engage in, but my biggest theme has been trying to integrate my passions and interests into some kind of meaning and also into work.

I'm glad to say I have an interview today for a job and I feel my prospects are good. To try to cover my bills I've been doing a lot of temp work but boy am I tired of that. When you temp you never know from week to week if you'll have an assignment, and therefore an income. The job I'm going for today is a 9 month contract to fill a role vacated by secondment. It would be great, if the role seems suitable, to have that kind of rare stability at this time!

I find that parallel with my economic situation, my inner world is just as active and in a process of flux. Right through my life and especially now I find I am really continuing to question what is real and what is true, in terms of the world of spirit and how it applies to actually living your life. The Buddhists say, before enlightenment, chop wood carry water - after enlightenment, chop wood carry water. This is so true! Its the human condition to carry on living one's life even while undertaking an internal spiritual quest. It doesn't make the inner world any less meaningful - in fact I consider it a blessing to have the external world in which to anchor my senses and my perception of reality even while I search my inner self for meaning.

One thing that frustrates me about the "modern" world of ours is the materialist interpretation of reality. So many so-called "experts" peddle the line that all things - including our consciousness - have emerged from matter. As well as this being philosophically absurd, to me its a deliberate insult to the human spirit. I feel grateful that I carry a knowing within that the spirit world is very real - the realm of clear knowing that we all originate from exists, and it has no need to justify itself to the world. I can't help but feel angry when the militant, scientific materialists deliberately downplay the importance of the clear light of the spirit world because right now I believe as humans in a materialistic age we need to be connected to our spirit more than ever. I know it's silly of me to take it personally but occasionally I can't help feel that way.

There are so many thoughts, theories, and unnecessary diversions today clouding the knowing of spirit. Just as our cities are being clogged with physical pollution, the mindstream of human consciousness is logjammed with extraneous thought. Fortunately I am of the conviction that most people have a deep-down sense of what is true and right ~ it may be only a whisper within their souls, but I am convinced that it is there. To me it's vital to maintain this kind of tentative optimism even in the face of a seemingly heedless march into a technologically-based false ecstasy. Personally I look forward to a time when this orgy of technology is replaced by a more sensitive, receptive and thoughtful outlook, based on a knowing that something higher and more "true" is there, just outside our noisy, rushing lifestyles, waiting for us to simply tune in and acknowledge it is there.

So while we chop wood and carry water, we can at least carry an inner joy, an inner peace, content that the true reason we are here is to grow in wisdom, to refine our inner knowing, and to bring more of that quiet joy and peace into our world. That way, no matter where we are or what we do for a career, we can infuse this world with more of the spirit of consciousness that flows from the finer realms. And to me that is the reason we are here ~ to help gently uplift and refine this material world, and our very being.

Peace be


Friday, May 8, 2009

Symbolism in the new Star Trek movie

Well I had a day off work yesterday, so I went and caught the new Star Trek movie. It was certainly entertaining, a little violent at some points but otherwise enjoyable.

Watch out ~ spoiler alert!

I noticed some interesting symbolism right from the get-go. The movie takes place in a slightly altered timeline from the original series, due to the arrival of a huge spacecraft from the future. George Kirk, father of James T. Kirk, is forced to assume command of a starship. His pregnant wife is on board, and she goes into labour as George, alone on the ship with everyone else evacuated, attacks the enemy vessel. He dies heroically, and his wife escapes - giving birth to the future James T. in the escape pod.

This reminded me of the many Sun King legends from pagan and Egyptian traditions. George can be seen as Osiris - the father who dies, and is reborn again in his son Horus, who goes on to be the new King (James Kirk of course going on to become the legendary captain of the Enterprise). George's wife is like the Mother Goddess, or Isis, who gives birth to the new Sun God ~ just as in pagan tradition, the summer Sun dies in winter and is reborn again from the earth in spring.

As the movie went on I realised another connection to occult symbolism, one which I explored in my last full-length post: that of the number 7. Kirk and his core crew, the main cast of the original series, are seven in number: Kirk the Sun King, Spock, Uhura (Venus), McCoy, Scotty, Sulu, and Chekhov. Its amazing how often groups of 7 turn up - as above so below, I guess. Also, its said that soul groups travel in groups of 7 throughout various incarnations.

Til next time

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Comments issue now fixed

Hi everyone

Recently two of my readers told me they could not post their comments on my blog ~ I'm just writing to advise you this problem is thankfully now fixed.

Please by all means go right ahead and post!

Thank you


Friday, May 1, 2009

Justice League - Gods of the Solar System?

One of the more fascinating connections I have found in popular culture of late concerns comic book superheroes. Virtually everyone in the Western world is familiar with Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, etc. But does anyone realise that these superheroes represent modern mythmaking - and that the core 7 heroes are but the latest embodiment of the 7 planetary gods?

In one of my favourite books, The Secret History of the World, the author points out that all through history there has been a perennial philosophy - a vision of the spirit worlds and the creator gods based not on dogma but ancient tradition, connecting the creation of the world with the spirits of the Sun, Moon, and five classical planets (Mercury through Saturn). Recently I realised that you can quite easily see how these gods - the same gods of the Olympian era - have been reincarnated in comic book form in the twentieth century.

Let's start with Superman. He draws his power from the Sun, and has a big golden "S" on his chest - which stands for the Sun, Sol, or Sol Invictus. He flies across the blue sky - blue being the main colour of his costume. His birth name, Kal El, comes from the character's creators Jewish heritage and means "voice of God"; in esoteric philosophy the Sun God is equivalent to the Logos or the Word - the spoken Word that in the beginning manifested all of creation. Superman is therfore clearly a solar hero; strong, noble, doing all his work in the bright light of day and working to bring all criminals to justice.

Batman meanwhile is his cosmic counterpart. He is an Earthling, cannot fly under his own power, and does all his best work at night. His animal totem - the bat - is a night creature. Batman uses fear and illusion to snare his foes. All this is highly suggestive of the Moon. Batman is therefore an incarnation of the Moon powers.

The Flash? That's simple- the golden wings on his helmet give the game away immediately. He is an avatar of Mercury, the winged messenger of the gods, fleet of foot, fast as quicksilver.

Wonder Woman is clearly Venus; not only is she female, and is a warrior princess (as were some early versions of Venus, or Astarte), but she bears the pentagram of Venus on her tiara.

Mars, again a no brainer: the Martian Manhunter!

Jupiter is a little trickier to spot in this bunch, but for me Aquaman takes the title. In Jupiter or Zeus' earliest forms he was a fish god - and otherwise known as Poseidon, god of the seas.

Now - Saturn had me bamboozled for quite some time. The hero Green Lantern suggested himself, but I thought how is he connected? I couldn't see it for the life of me. Then I read that at one point in the DC comics' history, they killed him off and replaced him with a demonic entity called the Parallax. This entity travelled from world to world feeding on people's fear, destroying whole civilisations. This is surely a primordial representation of the ancient god of death, Saturn.

And there you have it! The Greek gods are alive and well, folks, and we are re-telling their myths every day, in comics and in movies.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Lost ... and Found!

My partner and I are working in the same part of the city at the moment, and as it was raining I suggested we get a taxi to work. As we only live 10 minutes away this is not too expensive.

As we arrived I got my out wallet to pay with a card, but Susan managed to put together the exact fare in change, so we used that. I thanked the driver and we got out. I went to work thinking no more of it.

It wasn't until 11am that I realised there was nothing in my back pocket. My wallet was gone! I realised I must have dropped it in the cab and somehow just not realised. D'oh!

Naturally I called the cab company to report it, and also the banks where I have my cards and stopped them...usually I would be in more of a panic state, but with all my occult studies I knew to just chill and be cool. I knew there was no point getting in a big state, because after all the situation was what it was. The good thing was there was no cash in the wallet. The downside is the taxi company said it could be two or three days before I heard back from them.

As I was leaving work (I got to leave early today) I felt a prompting to say a prayer to the Goddess, whom I recognise as Isis. I've been studying the Egyptian myths lately, and as a former tarot reader I've long felt a connection with Isis. I offered the prayer, giving thanks to the Most High God (as I always am sure to do first up)  and then to Isis, as the patient & faithful protectress of us here on earth. I asked if what was lost could be returned to me, but of course to let God's will be done. (Little did I know that at the same time, my partner was saying a prayer to St Anthony, patron saint of returning lost items - and my namesake!).

Imagine my "shock and awe" when I got home, checked the mail and found - my wallet! Sitting comfortably right there in my letter box. Wow!! I could hardly believe it. I walked inside holding the recovered wallet in a semi-daze. It was going to be a pain in the behind to replace the cards, the ID, etc etc - but now here it was.

Obviously then taxi driver must have got my address from my ID. I presumed two earth-plane possibilities: that the kind cab driver waited till he got a fare back to my suburb and dropped it off on his way through; or that he very kindly drove all the way back here and dropped it off. Either way, my prayer was answered in pretty short order!

So folks - got any problems that need dealing with? Well send off those prayers to the divine beings you feel most comfortable with and get them into action  for you! That's all the heavenly ones are waiting for - for a human being to ask for their help. No questions asked!

With thanks to the nice cab driver - and the heavenly hierarchies.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Chiron - the Alchemist of the New Age

I've not posted for a couple of weeks as I was waiting for something good to say. Then today I feel like I had a fascinating realisation about Chiron, that little understood member of our solar system.

In Greek mythology Chiron is a centaur, in fact the most educated and civilised member of that race. He is a healer, a herbalist and a wise mentor to men. He is famous for having been accidentally shot by Heracles' (Hercules) poison arrows, and for suffering constantly because as an immortal god he could not die. With Zeus' intercession Chiron gave up his immortality to Prometheus, who was chained to a rock. So Chiron was allowed to die rather than suffer for eternity, and Zeus placed him in the sky as the constellation Sagittarius (some sources say Centaurus).

Chiron the asteroid was discovered in 1977. It was soon realised that Chiron is in fact part icy comet, part rocky asteriod that travels between the orbits of Saturn and Uranus.

Chiron's physical makeup is a big clue to his function in astrology. Many astrologers feel that Chiron partakes of the energies of both Uranus and Saturn; the icy part ~ and his erratic orbit! ~ represent his connection to the cosmic energies of Uranus, and the rocky, materialistic part to the energies of Saturn.

I believe Chiron has a major role to play in helping humankind to enter the Age of Aquarius. Many people in the "new age" community believe the Age of Aquarius heralds a new era of relations between humans, and with humans to the heavens. The trick is that Uranus and Aquarius represent having access to cosmic wisdom which could help facilitate this change; but Saturn represents the existing forms we all struggle with, the status quo that's been in place for so long, the things we see around us that depress us and make us pessimistic about the future.

The good news is that a change IS due, and we can all play our part in this. Chiron in the birth chart can help you see where you can channel the cosmic wisdom into an acceptable form in your life. Chiron, as the mediator between Mind and Matter, can help us to transform our ideas into reality.

For example, this blog is one attempt at activating my own Chiron. I have Chiron in the 5th house, which is creative expression, and in Aries, which is indepedence and assertion. By having this forum for my desire for creative expression, I am doing something to satisfy my need to transform my life.

Chiron is associated with healing, and by activating our Chiron we can begin the work of self healing.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Power of the Moon

I want to put on my astrologer's hat for a moment and talk about the Progressed Moon, and the effect it has as it moves through your birth chart.

In astrology, we each have a Sun sign, and also a Moon sign. The Progressed Moon is a measurement of the moon's movement after our date of birth - and of how often our Moon changes signs (and houses) in our chart (which is roughly every 2.5 years).

My Moon has just progressed into Virgo. Let me tell you I am feeling these effects already! I have totally revamped and reorganised this blog, and, after a long stint of doing temporary work assignments, it looks like I will once more have a full-time job (Virgo governs one's daily work and routine).

But more than that, it's the mannerisms and speech patterns that I have observed changing in myself lately. I notice I am more intolerant of other people's foibles, whereas previously I was more easy-going. I am cranky and irritable, where beforehand I was more light hearted. My partner has noticed these changes too, and it's a little unsettling for her ~ she feels almost like I am a different person!

All this goes to emphasise the power of the progressed Moon, and it makes me think of relationships that go through a rough patch after the first one to two years. We have all heard people say, "Oh, so-and-so has changed. I feel like I don't know him / her anymore. He's not the person I met / married"!

Maybe in some cases this is due to the effects Progressed Moon. Astrologically the Moon governs our emotions, our reaction to circumstance. When the Progressed Moon changes signs, it's possible that a whole new disposition comes into effect. Reactions change; emotional expression changes. Someone who was once a bit of a wall-flower may suddenly get an infusion of self-confidence. A person who was once finicky and overly-precious may chill out more, be more easy-going. A person who was quite social and outward-bound may suddenly become more inward, brooding, even obsessive.

All this can be the effect of the Progressed Moon, and it all depends on the sign the Moon is leaving and the one she is passing into.

Studying astrology can yield many such useful insights into the mysterious thing that is human nature. For the interested, I recommend checking out Astrodienst, where you can create a free, personal online profile and get a free birth chart interpretation. All you need to know is your date, exact time and place of birth. Happy star-trails!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Lorna Byrne

Hi everyone! I hope all had a nice Easter weekend.

I've just been reading the webpage of Irish mystic and angelic communicator, Lorna Byrne. She is truly a messenger of hope from the angels, and the stories she relates on her site are uplifting and inspiring.

She is like the Irish equivalent of Doreen Virtue in the U.S.! I enjoy reading about Doreen, and now Lorna, because its so refreshing to get in contact with the Angels and feel their uplifting love-energies.

After all, that is the true meaning of "spirituality" ~ being in tune with a "spiritual reality"!

Lorna also has a book out called Angels in My Hair. She talks about how she has seen angels since she was little, and how in her early life she suffered because she was different from other children. Who can't relate to that!

Have a look at her site! I highly recommend the "What the Angels have taught me" section.

Peace to all!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Power of Thought

I discovered today a website with very interesting articles on a variety of spiritual topics. It's called A Rosicrucian Speaks.

A man by the name Joseph Weed gave a series of lectures to students across North America. The one I've just read is entitled The Power of Thought and it's a wonderful and timely reminder about how we can all use our inborn and inbuilt ability of thought ~ for ill or for good.

I highly recommend everyone go check out this site. Recently I went through a period where I temporarily forgot the power of my own thought and the strong effects that can be generated when, due to unconsciousness, I forget to reign in my mind and my actions. Read it! I guarantee you'll be pleased you did.

Note: I just wanted to add that I am in no way affilliated with Rosicrucianism. As a student of matters spiritual I am however fascinated by what this group in it's many forms has to say.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Transformation with consciousness

I want to mention two more books I've read lately, which are Eckhart Tolle's The Power of Now and A New Earth.

These books are so useful because they define the main dilemma we have today, namely, the mind-ego and its machinations. Tolle elegantly but insightfully points out that the main cause of our suffering is our mind, which, being largely cut off from the main source of life-energy, thinks itself weak and insecure. Thus is born the existential terror most of us face ~ the fear of death.

I had a mini-revelation yesterday when I realised some of the truth that I am not the mind-ego that fears its death. I am the "I" who is beyond the death of the ego. In that moment I saw clearly that the fear of death is really just from the ego, which is an insecure structure of mental energy, made of of thoughts and fears, that must one day dissolve. I suddenly felt liberated, in some way, from the fear of personal death.

I have always believed in a spiritual reality beyond this world that we perceive with our five senses. Yet this was a new thing for me, to have a moment where I could clearly see the illusory nature of ego. I guess my reading paid off. Thank you, Mr Tolle!

Now for anyone who is also on a spiritual-seeking path, do not be put off by all this high-falutin' jargon. Tolle is very much in tune with the teachings of Jesus, and much of what Tolle says is in perfect alignment with the Master. For me, Jesus has always been number 1 in wisdom and in spiritual truth ~ what Tolle does is give this wisdom a refresh for our times. It's the same wisdom, it's just being given a new and contemporary airing.

I highly recommend these two titles, The Power of Now and A New Earth, for anyone who wants to get to grips directly with the cause of their own suffering, and who wants to take practical steps towards gaining their own enlightenment-moment.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Site refresh ~ Journey through Spirit

From being a simple journal I have now devoted this blog to writing about my main passion in life - which is expanding our knowledge of that which is spiritual.

As you can see I have added a widget that links to, the online journal of Jonathan Black. Black is the author of my favourite book of the moment, The Secret History of the World.

For a relative novice seeker like me, Black's book was what I had yearned for; a straight-forward, yet complex look into the teachings of secret societies throughout history. What I love is that it's not a dry, dusty, and detached look at history; no, Black's history is alive with passion, intrigue, strange beings and stranger historical figures. Some obviously deride his approach but I for one celebrate it; today's attitudes of materialism can't hold a candle to this wonderful book.

This is a book for people who have passion; passion for history, for spirituality, and for seeking truth. Not that Black's book is the last word; in true opposite-thinking it is more like a primer for those seeking, as Black says, "the real thing". It's the most excellent starting point for those on the quest for knowledge.

And so I have finally nailed my colours to the mast and re-dedicated this blog to my own seeking; hopefully others can share the journey and enjoy what I have to offer, while contributing their own views as well. Can I be very clear though ~ I prefer to connect with genuine seekers, people who examine their own beliefs as well as everything they encounter. I don't appreciate people whom I term "nutjobs" ~ conspiracy theorists, people with some agenda or political axe to grind. In short, those with a doomsday or other negative attitude, keep away, please. Lively and positive contributors only!

Having said that, please enjoy this Journey through Spirit.

Friday, January 23, 2009

President Obama's Inauguration speech

Hello there. Seeing as how Barack Obama’s Presidental Inauguration speech is by far the single most inspiring and wonderful thing I have ever heard said by a politician, I wanted to offer my quick analysis of what it all meant. President Obama is clearly an intelligent man - a refreshing change! - and it was really for my own benefit that I wanted to break his speech down, look at each section in turn, and offer my thoughts on what he was saying.
Now I’m not pretending this is a detailed, scientific, comprehensive analysis of all the facts, figures and whatnot raised by his speech. Rather its an attempt to offer commentary on the themes he mentions; the veiled (justified) barbs at certain individuals and groups, and his visions of a better future for the world.
OK here we go. Below is a transcript of the complete speech President Obama delivered at his inauguration. My comments are in blue and enclosed in dotted lines beneath each section of his speech. Enjoy.
My fellow citizens:
I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.
Here he acknowledges he does indeed have a big task ahead of him; and he gives a polite but fairly cursory acknowledgement of the outgoing President Bush. Hee hee.
Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.
So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.
That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.
These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land — a nagging fear that America’s decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.
A fairly damning indictment of Bush’s eight years in office. In fact he really puts the boot into him here in my opinion, pretty much implying that as a result of Bush’s presidency America’s economy is in a sorry state of disrepair. Also this is a  fairly wide-ranging and frank summary of all the major issues that ail the US presently - the health care system, the education system, dependence on fossil fuels, etc, all of which frankly is well-known to those of us outside the US.
Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America — they will be met. On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord. On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.
Here he states his determination to get on with the task of repairing America and that these things though they may be challenging they can indeed be done. He is also trying to gain bipartisan support for these changes, that in the face of undeniable evidence all must acknowledge need to be made.
We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.
He references the addiction to consumerism and the more indulgent aspects of Western culture. He also states the need for all people to re-awaken to the real mission of America; not to provide a comfortable living for a few, but opportunity and freedom for all.
In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling-for-less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted — for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.
For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.
For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.
For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sanh. Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.
He reminds us that those who toiled for America worked for a greater cause than individual gain, and that these were the people who birthed the powerful and prosperous nation we see today. He returns to this theme again and again; that America is not for the faint-hearted, nor for the self-indulgent; but that it has been forged through hardship and sacrifice so that all may benefit.
This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.
Again, a strong restatement that America remains powerful and is unified in this sense of new mission, and not just there to provide riches for the few.
For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. And all this we will do.
Stating that with today’s knowledge and technological abilities, surely health care & education can now be improved?! Also a bold statement about harnessing “new” energies - solar, wind and improving the soil  (possibly referring to organic or biodynamic farming? Whatever it is I’m completely for it!).
Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions — who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short. For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.
Brilliant - here he is addressing the cynicism that in the face of social improvement was once inevitable, and he reminds us that in its history America has already achieved the impossible - creating a new nation out of the most intense oppression.
What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them — that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. And those of us who manage the public’s dollars will be held to account — to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day — because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.
Wow. Here Obama applies the scalpel of necessity to government itself - he points out that those who hold outdated views are no longer even in the game. Excellent!! He sets his intention to cut programs that do not support the positive changes he wants to make - possibly a shot at the military-industrial complex and the fat cats? Also his resolve to make government more transparent and wiser in its spending. You go, sir.
Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control — and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our Gross Domestic Product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on our ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.
Here he affirms his belief in the market, but one that is regulated so as to not allow irresponsibility. A fair call, I’d say.
As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our Founding Fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience’s sake. And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more.
Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.
Pointing out that it was ideals combined with necessity & a desire for self-protection that drove the founding fathers to create a new nation.
We are the keepers of this legacy. Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort — even greater cooperation and understanding between nations. We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan. With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet. We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.
Again setting some visionary goals; to pull a Superman and reduce the nuclear threat around the world, to withdraw from Iraq and to settle the score in Afghanistan. A firm declaration that terrorists and killers will be finally defeated. Hmm…..perhaps one thing at a time, eh, Big O? Possibly this was said to placate the slavering right-wingers, so they don’t assume he’s gonna be soft on so-called threats to America. This for me is the only part of his speech that sounded like the same old tired war rhetoric. Oh well - I guess he had to say it didn’t he. 
For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.
Again reminding us of what the US has already accomplished in its history of struggle.
To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect.
To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society’s ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.
More visionary agenda-setting; that America will be a friend to those seeking peaceful means of progress, but an iron fist to those who seek other means. Clever line about the people judging their leaders by what they build - nice. And so true.
To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world’s resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.
This surely is a reference to the country of his father’s birth - Africa. A stark reminder too to Americans who have lived life large for so long, that America must now be there for others in need. Phew! God bless him for wanting to accomplish all this! And why not - its about time someone came forward with these intentions. I too believe we can no longer afford to be ignorant of human suffering and of environmental danger. Obama rocks!
As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us today, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages.
We honor them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment — a moment that will define a generation — it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.
An acknowledgement of those who have fallen in service to the nation, and those currently in the armed forces who serve and protect in dangerous lands. A nice gesture, surely appreciated by those people serving.
For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter’s courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent’s willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.
This is probably my favourite part of his speech. It resontaes with my belief that it is everthing we do, as individuals, in our small moments every day, that spreads like a ripple through the collective and truly makes our world. We the people have it in our power to shape the future and determine which way things will go. Here Obama reminds us that it is not just government, but each one of us that holds the new age in our hands if we are but willing to extend kindness.
Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends — hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.
This is the price and the promise of citizenship.
This is the source of our confidence — the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.
This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed — why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.
This passage sums up everything he has said previously; he reminds us that while the tasks ahead may involve new challenges, the spirit in which we meet those challenges is indeed timeless. For it is to the enduring idealism of America that Obama harks back throughout his speech, while simultaneously calling all of us - around the world - forth to the exciting and brave new age. Not the new world order of previous Presidents, mind you; the new age!
So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America’s birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:
“Let it be told to the future world…that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive…that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it].’
Just in case anyone missed the point of everything he has just said.
America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.
The final rallying call to all of us. Here he again calls us all to action; to live out his vision of the new age. And he reminds us that God has been and is always with us.
Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.
The sign-off. 

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's thought

I got another great quote from Inner Self today; this one is to kick off the new year on the right note.


------------------------------------------------------ - Focus of the Day:

I change my mind and change my life.

********************************* - Daily Inspiration:

As we enter this New Year, we all want to change our lives for the better. The question is, how?

There are two ways you can change your life: (1) Change your conditions; and (2) Change your mind. Sometimes you can change your conditions. Always you can change your mind. Ultimately, mastering your mind yields far more success and reward than rearranging conditions.

Find a way to look at every experience so it empowers you. I wish you a new year of news that is good because you choose to find it.