BRDNSKY 

Your guide to improved life satisfaction

Mind: Open for Business or Closed for the Season

Mind: Open for Business or Closed for the Season
Phillip J. Falcone
0:00/9:06

     William James references Clifford’s proposal to believe nothing. By believing nothing, Clifford stresses that we avoid being deceived by fallacies. This meant all things have a reasonable, observable causation. Religious belief or any belief would be considered unsound because in many cases the belief is based on conjecture. Yet, by believing nothing, we risk becoming slaves to fear and embarrassment. In order to compensate for this, we may say we have an open mind. Following one or the other extreme gets us nowhere.


     Believe nothing is a negation of possibilities. Those who insist a supreme deity exists or doesn’t exist may supplement their claims with science considered unsound. By following this train of thought, they may fall into the trap of belief. Instances such as this, the person has only partial information to formulate their conclusion. Forces working upon the minds of people are not always evident and may not always be people. Electromagnetic fields have been shown to affect the brain, thus affecting a person’s mind or personality. At one time, these forces may have been referred to as God or some other supernatural being as the cause of events. The role of science is to explain phenomena and provide explanations. When explanations are lacking religious leaders often take it upon themselves to fill in the blanks. When this occurs, questions arise. When unreasonable answers are insisted upon, the inquirer may resort to the idea of dismissing religion entirely, claiming it is a fallacy.


     Often religious leaders fill the role of the powers that be. The idea of these mysterious forces of authority began in the Gnostic doctrine. How convenient, a religion that explains religious diatribe. People who rely on this kind of information vehemently adhere to doctrine. What this amounts to, is an adherence to someone else’s interpretation of said doctrine. Thus, the religious beliefs held by most of the population are not their own. James reached the same conclusion over a hundred years ago. Nothing is new here, just history repeating itself. In essence, the powers that be are those people whom we allow to hold sway over us.


     At some point, someone demanded absolute obedience and used religious rhetoric to advance their agenda. Apparently, this person was successful, because others have been making the same demand since. Any number of people may hold a religious doctrine as absolute truth, and a good portion of them do so with conviction. Problems arise when there is no religious experience to support their belief. Thus, their conviction becomes meaningless. How can one follow a doctrine that does not resonate with them?

 

     We could say that faith is what carries them through and claim that faith is believing in something that cannot be proven. We may be incorrect. Faith receives because faith is a form of trust, not a belief. Faith is risky business, because whatever we are trusting to happen may or may not occur. This has nothing to do with doctrine. Anyone can follow doctrine. To believe, one must have experienced something to give it substance. Faith can lead us to such an experience. Can anyone believe without following doctrine?


     People who claim to believe in a supreme deity and lack knowledge to defend their claim make empty proclamations. Most likely, people say they believe in a god just to cover their bets. James cites Pascal’s wager. You either believe in a god or not. This statement is very simple, direct, and even practical. The chance of a single being controlling all is statistically remote. Yet, people will not only argue the absurdity of such impossible odds, they are willing to kill defending it. Statistics are like bible verses. They can be easily manipulated to demonstrate a point. Many scientists commit themselves to a theory to the point of ridicule because of their fear of embarrassment. Of course, it’s more likely due to their reluctance to accept new information.[1] Fiction writers base their living on writing about characters such as these striving for the long shot and making it. If a supreme deity does exist, just think of the rewards.


     Personally, I side with Archie Bahm who claims that those who insist on having an open mind lack belief in what they claim.[2] Another way to read this is an open mind is an empty mind. Being open-minded is not the equivalent of having an open mind. Yes, it’s just semantics. Think of it this way, if we are open to everything, what do we compare it with? Being open to everything is equivalent to saying that everything is true, and everything is false. The two cancel each other out. If we can hold a belief while considering new information and are unwilling to alter that belief when new evidence is presented, then we do not have an open mind. When we are able to adjust our belief according to the evidence, then we are open minded.


     Believing in something is important because it demonstrates conviction. Religion can be a vehicle for belief, just as science can be a vehicle of discovery. Being open minded is the same as using filters to purify water. We are able to experience what we believe and to discern what may be correct based on information and experience. Just covering our bets by saying we believe in something, whether its God or anything else, not only shows our ineptitude, but also a lackadaisical lifestyle.


[1] (Whitley, 2009)

[2] (Bahm, 1964)


October 2019

We are God by Nature

We are God
Phillip J Falcone
0:00/8:01

     Buddhism in America[1] is a tome, not a book. Within this tome are recorded the proceedings of the first Buddhist conference in the United States. Within its covers lay pearls, inspiration, and instruction. This is a highly recommended read.


     Lama Surya Das was one of the presenters of the conference. He made a declaration that sounded familiar. “We are all Buddhas by nature.”[2] All, not a few or only the privileged, but all are Buddhas. Jesus the Christ made the same declaration. “Is it not written that you are all gods?”[3] All, not a few or the just, or the priesthood, but all are gods. How astounding is that? Not only the Dalai Lama, but also the monks, the merchants, the peasantry, and the aliens are gods. What does it mean to be God?

Walking into a church I announced, “God has entered the building.” While I felt exhilarated, others looked on with disdain, sarcasm, and disbelief.


     Christ sent his followers out to share the Good News. The followers of Christ are many. What news do they spread? The news told to all has been, believe in Jesus and he will save you. What will Jesus save us from?


     They tell us, Jesus is the Savior; accept Jesus as your Savior. A savior leads us from darkness into the light. Reciting the words does not lead any out of darkness. News of this sort does not enlighten anyone. News of this sort only generates questions.


     The only way into the Kingdom of God is through Jesus Christ. This is not Good News. This is nothing. The Good News is that the Father is within Christ and Christ is within us. This is what Jesus was trying to tell his disciples in John’s Gospel. Listen closely, if Jesus is in God would that not make Jesus God as well? If Jesus were within you and I, would that not make us God as well? This is fantastic because God is no longer in the desert. God is not unreachable. God does not exist outside of ourselves. We are all God. We are all the same. Doctors, soldiers, beggars, thieves, and yes, even politicians are all gods. This may sound a bit too simple. Yes, this sounds extremely simple.


     Lama Surya Das went on to say, we should be contributors, not converters. Jesus the Christ said to teach and heal the sick. How do we heal the sick? We pray for them. Science has proven through numerous tests that prayer has a huge effect on a person’s health.[4] Hold a person’s hand and give it a gentle squeeze starts the process. Many were sent to teach. When we teach, we contribute. Contributors are participators. Participators do not wait for events to unfold. They are the events. We will find participators in many guises. We find them in hospices bringing comfort. They are the people in support groups listening to those in distress, sharing their stories. Some are in the streets giving aid wherever needed. Contributors are volunteers filling voids. These people are the blessings others pray for.


     Being a Buddha or a god, means we should act without thought of the fruits of our actions,[5] to do otherwise is an act of selfishness. Actions may harm or assist. Christ said to a Samaritan woman a time would come for us to worship God in spirit.[6] Spirit, in the Latin tongue means breath, and breath is life. The meaning is not that the world will worship God in spirit, but that we worship God in spirit. Our participation is an act of worship. Our actions demonstrate our worship. The people we assist and the people we harm are acts of worship. Jesus the Christ described spirit to Nicodemos as being like the wind. We do not know where it comes from nor where it goes.[7] Therefore, spirit is action. Actions display our behavior.


     Contributors participate in the experience of life. What is it that we are contributing? We are the answers to the prayers of others. We are Buddhas and Gods by nature. We are volunteers, sociopaths, teachers, criminals, etc. all are Gods. God is benevolent. God is vengeful. God is suffering. God is joyful. God is the populace of this world.


     Some already suspect we are Buddhas; already suspect our nature. Others chose to remain ignorant. They vehemently deny being God because they are afraid. They see God in a light they could never achieve because they see themselves as unworthy. Nevertheless, our duty is to recognize this within ourselves. To properly express the nature of Buddha, Christ, or God is best accomplished by serving others. No to do so, is a crime against neighbors and ourselves.


[1] Rapaport, A. (1998). Buddhism in America. Boston, MA: Tuttle Publishing

[2] Rapaport, (1998). Page 104, ¶1.

[3] Gospel of John 10: 31-37

[4] Dossey, L. (1997). Prayer is good medicine. Saturday Evening Post, 269 (6) 52. Retrieved March 1, 1999 from MasterFILE Elite database.

[5] Mitchel, Stephen, (2000). Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation. Three Rivers Press: New York, NY.

[6] Gospel of John 4:21-24.

[7] Gospel of John 3:5-8.

It Begins with a Point

It Begins with a Point
Phillip J. Falcone
0:00/9:10

     It is from the point of intelligence most begin their quest, as they invoke the need for logic. However, if we were to proceed in this fashion, we would sink into a sea of metaphors until a negation of life exists. For we would state that before life, there was no life, and we would fall into the very trap that so many plumbed when delving into the secrets of religion and mystery teachings. The trap they spring is that they pass judgement upon what is discovered by the measurements of contemporary civilization.


     From such an approach, we designate life as being equal to what we have determined life to be, which is a matter of having form and intelligence. The former can easily be understood. The latter is open to interpretation. The very idea of intelligence is controversial. In the United States, intelligence is measured through cognitive capacity.[1] The measure of cognitive capacity is composed of fluid intelligence, which is problem-solving abilities, and crystallized intelligence or the total sum of knowledge.[2] Some feel that intelligence is measured by one’s creative ability.[3] This is defined as solving problems with novel solutions or developing something considered entirely original. Of course, while applying novel solutions to challenges is possible, developing something entirely original is not so easy. Much of what we have today, whether it is of a tangible nature or not is often built upon something else. Others also suggest intelligence is more than cognitive demonstration but includes emotional and social intelligence as well.[4] Intelligence may be more inline with the ability to adapt. We have witnessed what happens with an animal, a person, or any living thing that fails to adapt to their environment or a given situation. They cease to be.


     Adaptation is not entirely left to chance. In order to adapt, one must become aware of the need to do so. The level of awareness one must possess to survive is defined by one’s interpretation of survival. Some are satisfied by merely opening their eyes each morning while continuing upon the same disgruntled path. Others have a more abundant description. Each of us has a level of satisfaction we are comfortable with, while at the same time possessing differing interpretations of success. Fortunately, many are no longer satisfied with the idea of materialism as a means of defining success and have turned to quality of life.[5] Our quality of life can be a demonstration of awareness.


     Quality of life, while still difficult to define, is easily demonstrated through our actions. Those who claim life to be an experience of suffering demonstrate a level of awareness that barely extends beyond their needs. Those who feel the need to fill their lives without a healthy level of risk may demonstrate the same level of awareness. Those who experience a life of ease may possess a level of awareness extending well beyond them. One group measures their life quality through levels of materialism, namely through the accumulation of financial wealth. Another group focuses more on social participation and the number of relationships.[6]


     Social participation is more than socializing at the local community center or concert hall. Social participation is interaction with others. For our purposes, this interaction exists on a meaningful level. Many may suspect that the pool of participants in each group is continually shrinking. We have traversed the whole of existence from a level of commonality to one of abstraction. Only those journeying from commonality towards one of abstraction will comprehend what’s been written.


     Those who seek a point of origin for their particular light of truth will become lost in a sea of metaphors. They are seeking a level of perfection, unaware that perfection is an end. They also see the end as a definite point of departure and seek to arrive through as direct a route as is possible. They seek a point of origin for all creatures. For them, there is a single point of light. They fail to recognize that light emanates in all directions.


     All creatures are part of the emanating light. All creatures are part of the flow of conscious, for they are not separated. As light emanates in all directions, so flows the consciousness of creation. In short, there is no separation.


     Separation occurs here. Those seeking a point of light, or a point of truth have separated themselves from the flow or from the emanations. They have not blinded themselves as some would claim. They have outfitted themselves with glasses that diffuse light. The emanations have been separated from each other in an attempt to ascertain truth, a truth which is also a folly.


     Separation is part of the awareness. An action we all have committed. Many become lost in separation, while others have gained from it. Only through separation do we experience the void between us. The void is tempting because it filters out obstruction. Here, there is only one light, the light of the sun. In simpler terms, there is only one path. However, light emanates.


     We have not resolved intelligence. We have only reconciled it with awareness. We have not resolved awareness. We have only paired it with separation. Only through separation do we discover the surrounding rays emanating from the same source. From our discovery, we find that separation is an illusion. Within the emanations of creation all exist, and we are all truly in the dark. For only within the dark are all equal, and it is the dark we seek to return.


     We began in the dark. Like flies drawn to a single source of light in the night, we sought that single point. The light did not reveal truth, only folly. For in the light we have separated ourselves.


[1] (Eris, 2008)

[2] (Lassiter, Matthews, Bell, & Maher, 2002)

[3] (Batey & Furnham, 2006)

[4] (Eris, Intelligence: An analysis of the American experience for the perspective of critical theory, 2008)

[5] (Hadaway & Roof, 1978)

[6] (Hadaway & Roof, 1978)



References

Batey, M., & Furnham, A. (2006). Creativity, intelligence, and persoanlity: A critical review of the scattered literature. Genetic, Social, and General Psycholog Monographs, 132(4), 355.

Eris, B. (2008). Intelligence: An analysis of the American experience for the perspective of critical theory. Educational Sciences: Theory & Practice, 8(1), 79-87.

Eris, B. (2008). Intelligence: An analysis of the American experience from the perspective of critical theory. Educational Sciences: Theory & Practice, 8(1), 79-87.

Hadaway, C. K., & Roof, W. C. (1978). Religious commitment and the quality of life in American society. Review of Religous Research, 19(3), 295.

Lassiter, K. H., Matthews, T. D., Bell, N. L., & Maher, C. M. (2002). Comparison of the general ability measure for adults and the Kaufman adolescent and adult intelligence test with college student. Paychology in the Schools, 39(5), 497.


16 Aug. 2019

An Open Mind Understands More than One that is Closed

An Open Mind Understands More than One that is Closed
Falcone Phillip J (Brdnsky)
0:00/12:17

     Several authors have collected the so-called sayings of Jesus and published them. They make great resources if one wants to avoid the tediousness of bible verses. They tend to be more complete as they capture the entire paragraph. Many like to refer to Jesus as a Master Teacher. If we do this, then we must look past the surface to discover an esoteric meaning. For most, the exoteric, or common interpretation is enough. Not all the sayings contain hidden meanings. Some are responses to inquiries and others are inquiries. A random selection provides us with a verse taken from the Gospel of Luke. This passage may have been a lesson.


Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has washed my feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of head. You gave me no kiss, but his woman has not ceased to kiss my feet since the time I came in. You did not anoint my head with oil, but this woman has anointed my feet with fragrant oil. Therefore, I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she lived much. But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little. Then he said to her, your sins are forgiven.


     Jesus turned to the woman and said to Simon, do you see this woman? Two basic energies form the whole of creation, active and passive; force and receptivity. They are often referred to as male and female, though they have little to do with gender. They were stated as such because of the need for the male to fertilize the female’s egg.[1] Jesus faced the female because it is easier to cause passivity to become receptive. Though the lesson was most likely directed toward Simon, who may not have been as open.


     I entered your house, you gave me no water for my feet, but she has washed my feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head. While he speaks of a house, he may have been saying, I entered your mind and you did not greet me. Then again, he may have entered Simon’s house and was not greeted. Simon represents active energy, which is force. Traditionally, when guests call, the host offers drink or refreshments as a way of welcoming them. When no such offering is made, the message is that the guests are not welcome.


     Active energy is often referred to as the intellect, while water is emotion. Emotions are the waters of life, for that is how life is experienced. Untamed emotions are impulsive acts. No water for my feet speaks of the physical aspect. Feet are what ground us to the earth, they are physical. The water, in this instance may refer to drink.


     She washes Jesus’ feet with her tears. Tears often accompany strong emotions. Happiness and sadness can be strong emotions. This could imply that she is overjoyed to see him. Notice, Jesus said the hair of her head, not her hair. The difference is important. The reference to the hair of her head suggests a mane like a lion. A lion represents the sun or the Supreme Deity, often referred to as God. The head may also imply intellect, or mind. At the same time, this could also be a representation of namaste, or the goddess within greets the god within.


     There is more. We can also say the woman is intuitive. Intuitiveness is reached when passive energy becomes receptive and is infused with a blend of emotions and intelligence. We don’t always need to understand the meaning to the words. Sometimes comprehending the underlying emotion is enough.

You gave me no kiss, but this woman has not ceased to kiss my feet since the time I came in. A kiss is a gift and often seen as the gift of life. In Genesis, God breathed into Adam, giving him life. God kissed Adam bestowing unto him the gift of life. A kiss is often associated with love. Love is a nurturing act. The woman may have been bestowing upon him gifts of love. When love acts, love nurtures. Love is not devotion. Love is not trust. Love is not sexual. Love is the ability to nurture. Unconditional love is the ability to nurture one’s self and others.


     You did not anoint my head with oil, but this woman has anointed my feet with fragrant oil. To anoint another is to honor their divinity. Divinity is found in the head because that is where Mind dwells. The feet refer to a physical nature. The woman received Jesus. We do not know if she received him as a teacher or if she understood the deeper meaning being relayed. The feet and the head are of opposite ends. They represent a duality. They also suggest opposition and completion.


     Fragrant oil is a high honor. Fragrance is typically from one or several flowers. Flowers are sometimes considered symbolic of renewal. It was not Jesus’ renewal that was being expressed. The renewal was her own. Through Jesus, she was renewed or even born again.


     Therefore, I say to you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much. Love gives while faith receives.[2] If we utilize the common definition of sin, which is that which is against God, there is much we can imagine. However, if we also agree to the idea of God dwelling within each of us, then the real sin occurs when we do ourselves a disservice. If we utilize the Greek meaning, then sin indicates she missed the mark. When do we miss the mark? We miss the mark when we fail to understand. There is much that she may not understand. Yet, through nurturing others one learns to nurture themselves. One who loves little, nurtures little.


     But to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little. We learn through example. If we are not nurtured, then we in turn do not nurture. Here is the lesson. There is much we do not understand. If we follow the example long enough, much can be accomplished.


     From a dualistic perspective, we are presented with active energy and passive energy. The Archetype occurs when they become harmonized, which occurs when they are blended. Jesus is the Archetype who has blended the two energies. He expresses harmony, which acts upon others and is acted upon. The story demonstrates the need for us to become receptive, when resistant. It is not enough be wholly one or the other. Simon represents those who are resistant and possibly forceful. There will always be those who are resistant and forceful, and this will most likely continue. The woman appears to be entirely of a physical nature and in turn emotional and easily acted upon. This is not because she is a woman, but because her focus of attention is the feet. It could just as easily be she who is resistant and Simon who kisses Jesus’ feet. However, because her nature is receptive, she is easily acted upon. This is why Jesus faces her and not Simon. It is foolish to teach one who is resistant to learning. While the one being taught my not comprehend all, they will comprehend.


     One acts wholly for themselves and the other acts wholly for others. Of the two, the latter is more acceptable. However, it is the Archetype one should strive to emulate.


[1] (Kelly, 1893)

[2] (The Gospel of Philip, 1984)


07/2019

Reanimation

Reanimation
Phillip J Falcone
0:00/10:55

“Now we turn to a startling development in the world of science. The brains of dead pigs have been partially revived in the lab hours after the animals were killed in a slaughterhouse. NPR's Nell Greenfieldboyce reports that scientists and ethicists alike are grappling with the implications.” This was announced by Audie Cornish on National Public Radio April 17, 2019.


   This is not science fiction. Scientists purchased the heads of swine immediately after slaughter, cleaned the brains, and pumped a supply of oxygen, nutrients, and injury-repairing ingredients four hours after death.[1] Before we go any further, let’s think about this for a moment. They managed to resuscitate the brain of a pig. Why the researchers were attempting this is unclear. Consider what this might suggest.


   Could Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein story have been a prediction? Was she on to something? What does it mean to be dead? Religions and metaphysicists have speculated as to what the function of the brain is outside of Nature’s ultimate creation. The brain was believed to house the soul aspect of a person. They teach that the body requires its presence. Science tells us the mind is merely the product of electrical and chemical interactions. Is there more? Frankenstein’s creature was considered an abomination. After the shock has worn off, what will the bioethicists, religious leaders, and naysayers declare? What qualifies as being alive?


   Before we can answer anything regarding the nature of being alive, we have to determine what alive, live, and living mean. Live is simply being alive. Alive is interpreted as not dead. Would this mean the swine in question was brought back to life? A second definition suggests active or animated. Does the brain being active or animated qualify as being alive? If so, then science may have stumbled upon something remarkable. If we go further, alive also means alert. Alert is to be aware. If we follow this line, then we have to question the metaphysical viewpoint which says even inanimate objects are alive. What evidence is offered to support this belief? There is none. Beliefs do not require evidence.[2] Therefore, rocks may possess a level of awareness despite the facts.


   Did scientists cause the swine to become alive? The brain was active, which fulfills part of the definition. Does the brain constitute the swine? Can a limb or organ constitute the entire being. If we apply holographic theory, then potentially, yes. Holographic theory suggests that within a single particle the whole can exist. Thus, those possessing transplanted organs may also be merged with the donor. This may be too abstract. Let’s put this in terms easily understood. From the brain the entire animal may be recreated. After all, it holds the requisite DNA.


   The scientists managed to keep the brain alive for six hours. They also administered a drug to prevent the occurrence of any structured electrical activity.[3] This suggests that being alive may require a level of structure. This also suggests that consciousness may be a structured event. If we choose to view consciousness as energy, then it must be organized energy systems. The brain typically represents an organized system when functioning properly. In this instance we are discussing the idea of cohesive neuron activity, which involves chemical and electrical systems. Consciousness, then may be a structured activity that relies upon some form of guidance. This also suggests the life-force, or the animating force may be separate from consciousness and is a type of electricity. Ironically, the ancient Egyptians believed the animating force or spirit was passed on through a person’s parents. [4] This means each surrenders a part of their life-force to initiate the life of a fetus. They also believed the soul was a person’s personality and remained intact after death. Soul and spirit are separate manifestations.


   In order to explain how the consciousness might be guided we must consider Rupert Sheldrake’s theory of morphic field resonance. The gist is that invisible fields of information form as part of a developing system possibly through communication between particles. Logically, in order for a system to develop communication must take place. Morphic fields are an essential part of nature and the creative process. For instance, during coitus the respective DNA strands are establishing a level of communication.


   These fields are also easily influenced. We see these influences as genetic anomalies, mutations, and manipulations. Humans have been influencing the natural unfolding of nature for centuries. One has only to look at the nearest stray dog or cat, rose, vegetable, and host of other agricultural produce. Nature has provided her own variety of birds, fish, and other breeds through natural selection. We are not questioning the validity of humans creating. We are demonstrating the natural process of evolution. The question that may be on the edge of our thoughts is how do these fields form?


   We believe they form through communication, but that may be too vague. Loosely put, morphic fields are formed through patterns of repetition.[5] An anomalous occurrence is the corruption of a given field. While a single occurrence may be difficult to repeat, the pattern still exists. When similar conditions do occur, the pattern is executed. Each time a pattern repeats itself, the more stable the pattern becomes. In the case of our science experiment with the brains of swine, each time they repeat the experiment and confirm their findings, they strengthen the field associated with it. Presently, the electrical activity of the brain was incoherent. However, the pattern of reanimation is somewhat established. The natural cohesive neuronal activity of the brain of a swine is already established. Eventually, the non-cohesive pattern will merge with the cohesive pattern. When this happens consciousness may appear to have spontaneously arisen. Presently, the pattern is limited to swine but may will eventually infest other fields of consciousness. We have taken a tiny step towards something that may one day have a huge impact upon our lives.


   While scientists wrestle the potentiality of re-animation, and script writers prepare for another round of zombie movies, those with an affinity for spiritualty are faced with a far more serious question. Would a re-animated body retain an imprint of the original host? Can the host be forced back into a vacated vessel, or would another consciousness be able to inhabit it?


   We can continue posing various esoteric questions, which may never be answered for a variety of reasons or we can simply dismiss the experiment all together. The fact is, there is now the potential to literally resurrect the dead and possibly suggest immortality as a reality. If this becomes the case, I will have to revise my opinions regarding the concept because it may no longer be wishful thinking. On a more serious note, what happens when hospitals begin forwarding bills for re-animation? Will insurances pick up the tab? Would there be co-pays foisted upon us? How would this affect Medicare?




Works Cited

Greenfieldboyce, N. (2019, April 17). Health Shots. Retrieved from NPR: https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/04/017/714289322

Schommer-Aikins, M. (2004). Explaining the epistemological belief system. Introducing the embedded systemic model and coordinated research approach. Educational Psychologist, 39(1), 19-29.

Sheldrake, R. (1981). Morphic Resonance: The Nature of Formative Causation. Rochester, VT: Park Street Press.

The Trustees of the British Museum. (2010). Journey through the afterlife: Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead. (J. H. Taylor, Ed.) London: British Museum Press.


[1] (Greenfieldboyce, 2019)

[2] (Schommer-Aikins, 2004)

[3] (Greenfieldboyce, 2019)

[4] (The Trustees of the British Museum, 2010)

[5] (Sheldrake, 1981)


2 June 2019

The Perception of Power

The Perception of Power
Brdnsky
0:00/13:03

   There is something we struggle with more than anything else. It is mysterious and enticing. We witness its effects as much as we experience it from the hands of others. We fear it and yet, furtively seek it. We give it away freely and struggle to recognize how others wield it so effortlessly. This thing we struggle with is unseen, yet we desire to befriend it. We utilize it without realization and run when we witness its aftermath. This unseen thing we search for and struggle with at the same time is power. 


   We are part of a culture that worships power, as many cultures do. We entertain ourselves with its darkest aspect while condemning its use in the hands of those we despise. We often fantasize being immersed in its countenance. All of this we do within the confines of mind, pretending we are safe from its tendrils.


   In the natural order of life, power is what rules, and rightly so. Power is the ability to influence. Without influence, we are less than noses floating in the sea like flotsam. We cast our influence upon others every day, every moment. We do so willingly, and often without thought. Then suddenly, one of whom we exert ourselves upon wields a power mightier than ours. At that point we recoil in shame.

Politics is about power. We have only to direct our gaze upon our nations to witness its effects. Though we should scrutinize the interplay of politics much closer, we prefer to view it from afar. We purposefully ignore the fallout. I often find myself wondering if the macrocosm of the realm of politics mirrors the interplay of wills from the microcosm of our daily dance or if it’s the jockeying for position on the mini stages throughout our cities, towns, villages, institutions, organizations, clubs, and playgrounds. Do those politics reflect the global display? It matters not. What matters is how we choose to wield our power of will.


   There are few things that make us all equals. Power is one of those things. We are born with it and wield it almost immediately. We begin influencing others from the womb, or as some believe as souls before entering a fetus. Our first exercise with power is that of survival. Our first lesson is the one which stays with us the longest. Throughout our lives, we apply power in order to survive, whether it is defensively or offensively. Through survival, we find justification. We do not struggle with this. We struggle with the rest.


   Every society, every institution, every social event requires a leader. If we invoke the principles of nature, we will find that politics deals directly with power and is the demonstration of natural leadership. Every collective requires a leader. Every leader must prove themselves worthy to lead. This is where part of the fallacy lay. It is not that leaders must prove themselves worthy to lead, but they must prove themselves worthy for a single person to follow. It is not the leader that wields power, it is the individual that infuses the leader with power.


   A leader may have defeated all contenders, but if there are not enough followers to support them, they are impotent. We naturally follow strong leaders. This has little to do with whether they are responsible for hundreds of deaths or saving thousands of lives. Those who appear to be unsure or fill their followers with uncertainty often find themselves only leading themselves.


   Power does not lay within the leadership only. Each of us holds sway over those associated with us, as they hold sway of ourselves. We do not associate with those who appear weaker than we, unless we are insecure with ourselves. Most prefer to be among equals or betters. We depend upon them for inspiration. This does not dismiss those whom we judge to be weaker, because they often align themselves with us for similar reasons. This is part of the flow of information. This is part of the process of evolving.


   As with all things, whether tangible or not, there resides within their polar opposites.[1] Much of what we vicariously witness are the abuses of power in the form of harassment, verbal, physical, emotional and sexual misuse, as well as religious, sexual, and racial prejudices. Some of these may have taken up residence within us during our lifetime, or its vestiges yet remain. Experiences such as these mislead us into the belief that power corrupts, which is false. Power simply is. The corruption lay within the individual wielding it.


   This brings us to the purpose of this writing, which demonstrates the offhandedness or thoughtlessness behind our demonstrations of power. Love is a verb, and verbs describe actions. Actions are attributed to the influence of power. We act in certain ways towards others. Often the only consideration given to these actions are how they impact us. This is normal and part of our need to survive. There is nothing detrimental in this regard. As we expand our awareness during the awakening process, we begin to take others into account, but it still rests with the need to survive.


   Love has become a catch-all phrase that encompasses a variety of meanings. Therefore, we are going to define love as nurture. Nurture encompasses all actions that support another. When we utter the words, I love you, we are pledging our support. Support occurs in a variety of ways and can range from words of encouragement, to providing transportation, to holding hands. Think of love as a beneficial means of the use of power. Power is the ability to influence others and love is composed of those actions of support.


   There is the Natural Principle of Polarities, which is aptly described within the words, as above, so below. This means that within all things resides their polar opposite. When this concept is crudely expressed, these polarities oppose each other. Therefore, when love is crudely expressed, it may be comprised of what we term abuse, which is actually a misuse of power. Before abuse can occur, one must first have an understanding.


   Maintaining the idea of love being the nurturing effects of power, it must also include the detrimental effects of power. This is why many say there is a fine line between love and hate, or they refer to the words love/ hate relationship. The same is true of pain and pleasure. Typically, pleasure can be viewed as a response to nurturing. This leaves pain as a natural response to what is harmful. These are natural occurrences. From a general perspective this would be considered the opposite of love, or nurture.


   Most will agree that pain and pleasure are opposites, however, this not the case. For those whose awareness is expanding, they will understand that pain and pleasure are perceptions.[2] Perceptions are merely the manner in which something is understood. Part of our understanding comes through the value we assign. This means that pleasure and pain do not oppose each other; they complement each other. This does not mean that in order to know pleasure one must know pain. What this means is that what one may consider to be pain, may be pleasurable. Power itself has no value. We are the ones who judge the actions of others and assess value.


   When we consider the terms beneficial and detrimental, they are at odds. They are also complementary. This brings us to the last aspect of our inquiry. We have focused on the one exerting power. What about the one being acted upon? They are the one’s who provide value to the act. They determine if the power being exerted is beneficial or detrimental. In other words, what appears to be abusive to you or I may be beneficial or desirous of another. 


   It’s not power that we struggle with. It’s not what we judge to be an abuse or beneficial use of power that we struggle with. What we struggle with is our perception of the power we wield. Part of the struggle is our reaction to the how others exert their power, because we are fearful of doing the same. In order to surpass our struggle, we must love all, or nurture all.


[1] (Initiates, 1912)

[2] (Evola, 1983)


May 18 2019

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Events for you to experience

Dream Interpretation Workshop October 19, 2019 at the Golden Light Spiritualist Church (2110 N. Milford Rd., Highland, MI) at 10 am. A love donation is asked, so if you enjoy the class, please give generously, A portion of the proceeds goes to Golden Light Spiritualist Church.


2110 N. Milford Rd. Highland, MI
October 24 at 8:30, a Ghostly Gathering in Paw Paw, MI. Bring your ghost investigation tools/ cellphone apps. If you don't have any, come anyway. I'm sure someone will share. Directions and info.
Join us November 24 at the Spiritualist First Church of Prayer as Ruth Slater speaks about and demonstrates Reconnective Therapy. Regular services begin at 10 am until 11:30. We will break for lunch and return at 1 pm for Ruth Slater's presentation. Join us at 3511 Vine St. South Bend, Indiana for November's Spiritualist Demonstration.
3511 Vine St. South Bend, IN

A Brief Word about David Schroeder's A New Age is Upon Us

David Schroeder is the ideal counselor, coach and leadership guide for individuals, couples and organizations who seek a pathway through difficult and upsetting transitions. Want to know more about David?

Effect of group practice of transcendental meditation program on biochemical indicators of stress in non-meditators: A prospective time series study

Some studies have shown that group practice of Transcendental Meditation may cause small reductions in crime, violence, and other social stressors in the surrounding community.


Walton, Kenneth G.; Cavanaugh, Kenneth L. & Pugh, Nirmal D. (2005). Journal of Social Behavior and Personality 17, 339-373

Origin of quantum mechanical results and life: A clue from quantum biology

Quantum biology suggests mutations in nature are not random. Genetic mutations may be biased in a direction intended for survival.


Dikshit, Biswaranjan. NeuroQuantology. Apr2018, Vol. 16 Issue 4, p26-33

Food for Thought...

If, as Andrew Jackson Davis says, God is fixed, then all attributed to God would also be fixed or become fixed. This is contrary to the observations of Nature. 


If the nature of Nature is to create, then refinement is part of her nature. Therefore, God is not fixed, but is also in a state of refinement. Such continuous refinement inevitably returns one to the beginning. Hence, all returns to the Source of the beginning.


Chakra Energy and the Law of Attraction

The chakras are like any other energy system. The sacral chakra takes in raw energy from the subtle fields and moves it down to the root chakra, up to the spleen chakra, or off to the heart chakra. Any of these points can be the second step in refining that energy. No matter what direction it is shunted in, it must pass through the throat, brow, and possibly the bindu vasarga chakras before exiting the crown chakra.

This subtle energy is also a key ingredient for the creative process. Want to know why?

Available in print at Amazon.

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Consider this...

The quest for the inner self is not complete without attention to the continuity of life.

Raymond Lee, L.M. (2015). 

Consuming the afterlife: Spirituality, neo-spiritualism and continuity of the self. Mortality 20(1): 83-97. 


Where Lies the Focus?

When looking at yesterday's religions we find a focus on nature, a desire for truth, and a sense of community. When looking at today's expressions we may see desires for disharmony, deception, and marginalization. All of these are based on human interpretation. Meaning what I see may not be what you see. Neither yesterday's nor today's practices are better or less effective than the other. Both serve those participating in them. The question is, are you where you choose to be, or are you there due to matters of circumstance?

Creation by Design

Creation by Design is now available at Amazon. Now all three ebooks have been compiled and revised and available in a single volume.

Creation by Design explores why we attract unwanted events in our lives and offers a way to attract what we desire. 

Yes, this is another Law of Attraction book. However, we also explore the potential science behind the natural principle. Check it out. Get your copy at Amazon today.

Chapter 4: Kabbalists' view of the world

Nothing does not mean no-thing. Nothing means indistinct. This is a Hindu approach to the All and belongs to one of their sects. Therefore, God or the Absolute is not distinctive. They are indistinctive. This allows all to have come from the Absolute and why its rays are distinctive. Their distinctiveness is what causes them to be diffused.


Inspired by Adolphe Frank (1926). The Kabbalah, or the Religious Philosophy of the Hebrews. Translated by I. Sossnitz.

Role of religious and mystic experiences in human evolution, the: A corollary hypothesis for neuro-theology

Nature manages to maintain a reasonable equilibrium of those who have mystical experiences and those who do not. Perhaps the belief that anyone can be a medium/psychic is a myth.

Todd R. Murphy (2010). The role of religious and mystic experiences in human evolution: A corollary hypothesis for neurotheology. NeuroQuantology, 8 (4) 495-508

The World's Living Religions

Interestingly, one who kills and is willing to suffer the consequences is practicing a higher religion than one who prays for more than they deserve.


Inspired by Archie Bahm; The World's Living Religions; chapter: Buddhism; Theravada

Ki

Ki, Chi, or Qi? So many spellings. Although I am not referring to any of the early writings of the Rig Vedas, I am referring to possibly the first time the word was used. The earliest known Gods were of Sumerian origin and the gods were conceived as having human form. This probably made them easier to relate to. An was the male counterpart of Ki. Together, they formed the air-god Enlil. Ki is female energy and the life force.
Kramer, Samuel Noah (1972). Sumerian mythology: A study of spiritual and literary achievement in the third millennium B. C. University of Pennsylvania Press. Philadelphia.

The Fallacy of Immortality video

There is more..... continue the exploration.

Explaining the epistemological belief system. Introducing the embedded systemic model and coordinated research approach

Belief systems to do not require validity or appropriateness to application nor consistency. Beliefs are essentially, unchanging. When they do change, it is not through argument, but through a shift in paradigm.


Schommer-Aikins, Marlene (2004). Explaining the epistemological belief system. Introducing the embedded systemic model and coordinated research approach. Educational Psychologist, 39 (1) 19-29.

Culture as common sense: Perceived consensus versus personal beliefs as mechanism of cultural influence

Group perceptions of societal traditions often lag behind social change. Social groups and possibly groups within social groups vary through their frame of reference causing commonalities to be jumbled or even non-existent. In other words groups of like-mined people often found through and within social institutions such as politics and religion, are often lost in social change. This may be caused by a lack of diversity in individual associations and peers.
Just a thought.

Zou, Xi; Tam, Kim-Pong; Morris, Michael W.; Lee, Sau-lai; Lau, Ivy Yee-Man& Chiu, Chi-yue (2009). Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 97 (4) 579-597.

Once you know the secrets, which really aren't secrets, the way you experience life will improve. There are no magic spells that will fix anything. However, we can work with the subtle energies commonly referred to as the Law of Attraction, mojo, magic, and luck.

Available for $1.99
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Creation by Design is now available at Amazon. Now all three ebooks have been compiled and revised and available in a single volume.
E-book available at Smashwords and a hard copy soon to be available at Amazon.

Origin of Religion

When looking for the origin of religion, we must look internally. Here, we find a common thread to the religious experience. These commonalities include the sensation of floating or flying, the sensation of traveling through a tunnel or vortex during an altered state of conscious. Only through these common experiences can there be a reference point that allows us to share.


John R. Hinnells (2007). A Handbook of Ancient Religions

from The Kabbalah or the Religious Philosophy of the Hebrews

Nothing ever separates itself from the Source of Principle, which is the highest unity.

- Adolphe Franck (1926)

The effect of binaural beats on working memory capacity

By introducing a binaural beat, the executive functioning of the brain can be enhanced, altering our abilities for vigilance, concentration, and information processing. The thought is that each hemisphere generates its own frequency. When two frequencies of slightly different tonal qualities are introduced, each hemisphere becomes entrained to the frequency. Because the brain interprets a third beat, which is the difference between the two, the two hemispheres become more synchronized with the third binaural beat.

KRAUS, Jakub; PORUBANOVÁ, Michaela. Studia Psychologica. 2015, Vol. 57 Issue 2, p135-145. 11p


Are spiritual encounters all in your head?

After a benign tumor had been removed from the left temporal lobe, a person experienced auditory and visual hallucinations. The hallucinations were attributed to a divine source, or God. The person was informed he had developed temporal lobe epilepsy.


Bradley-Hagerty, Barbara (14 August 2009). NPR. www.npr.org


Medicine in a mind/body culture

If a person can learn to control their life-force through physical and psychological exercises, eventually the person learns to move their life-force outside the body.


David Eisenberg (1993). Healing and the Mind. New York: Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing. 


"Spooky actions at a distance:" Physics, psi, and distant healing

The results of distant healing studies with humans has not provided statistically significant results. However, the anomaly persists.


Leder, Drew (2005). Journal of Alternative & Complimentary Medicine 11 (5) 923-930.

Explaining the epistemological belief system. Introducing the embedded systemic model and coordinated research approach.

Belief systems to do not require validity or appropriateness to application nor consistency. Beliefs are essentially, unchanging. When they do change, it is not through argument, but through a shift in paradigm.


Schommer-Aikins, Marlene (2004). Educational Psychologist, 39 (1) 19-29

Creativity, intelligence, and personality: A critical review of the scattered literature

The idea of creativity being the original product of a person is a Western definition. Through this idea, creativity is seen as a trait or gift. Eastern views of creativity are that of personal truth or self-growth. Creativity is seen as a process of understanding and enlightenment.


Batey, M. & Furnham, A. (2006). Genetic, Social, and General Psychology Monographs, 132 (4) 355.


Spiritual practice and psychological depth 

Religion itself is a form of psychology. When all aspects of the body function in harmony, the body is said to be healthy. Religion, when it is in harmony with our emotions, body, and intellect will lead to a spiritual experience through ceremonial habit.


Moore, Thomas (1994). Care of the soul. New York: Harper Perennial 


The spirituality of Buddhist teens: religious/ spiritual experiences and their associated triggers, attributes and attitudes

Religious experiences reflect an awareness of a benevolent power. Spiritual experience is considered to be more down-to-earth and independent of any religious beliefs. A third type of experience somewhere between the two is the mystical experience.


Thanissaro, Phra Nicholas. International Journal of Children's Spirituality , Aug-Nov2015, Vol. 20 Issue 3/4, p218-232

Transcendental experiences during meditation practice.

Meditation techniques are developed for the purpose of investigating the consciousness from different perspectives, and brain activities.


Travis, Frederick (2013). Annals of the New York academy of Sciences 1307 (2014) 1-8.


A mindful meditation: Mind over matter: Jon Kabat-Zinn.

When observed, mind is either contemplating the past or pondering the future. This contributes to a lack of awareness, limiting our perspective of self and our relationship to the environment. Such a state is akin to dreams.


Diehl, Katherine E. (1995). Body Mind Spirit Magazine, 14 (1) 42. 

Brain as hologram

The ability of thought being able to influence matter can be so profound that the notion of substance and mental processes being separated become so illogical that our core beliefs become more than falsehoods - they are ridiculous. When Bohm's idea of a holographic universe is added to quantum theory, the result is that reality is naught but a mental construct. When we add the idea of reality being interpretations of light wave manipulation, we may have to question the concept of existence.


Talbot, Michael (1991). The Holographic Universe. New York: HarperCollins.


Taoism

Yang and yin represent harmony or flow, not balance. Think of one as initiation and the other as completion.


Bahm, Archie (1964). The World's Living Religions: A searching comparison of the faiths of East and West. Carbondale and Edwardsville, IL; Southern Illinois University Press


The role of religious and mystical experiences in human evolution: A corollary hypothesis for neurotheology.

The earliest forms of meditation and subsequent activation of specific brain areas may actually have been accidental. Staring into the flames of fire, pools of water or remaining still for long periods of time waiting for some activity to commence may have been the seeds to the practice of meditation. The experiences they encountered may have had a profound effect upon them.


Murphy, Todd R. (2010). NeuroQuantology, 8 (4) p495-508.


Ancient Egypt: 

The nobility and officials

The use of religion as a tool of manipulation occurred when the first ruler of Egypt began to curry favor with the priesthood. Many of the early Shaman were thought to be leaders or part of the leader class. When they were replaced by chieftains during the interim of cave paintings and written language, the priest caste was formed and political bodies developed.


Rosale, David


Hinnells, John R. (2007). Handbook of Ancient Religions. New York; Cambridge University Press


Myth or Fact?

The chakras are like any other energy system. The sacral chakra takes in raw energy from the subtle fields and moves it down to the root chakra, up to the spleen chakra, or off to the heart chakra. Any of these points can be the second step in refining that energy. No matter what direction it is shunted in, it must pass through the throat, brow, and possibly the bindu vasarga chakras before exiting the crown chakra.

Find out what this has to do with the Law of Attraction and You!

Comparison of physical therapy with energy healing for improving range of motion in subjects with restricted shoulder mobility.

The average reduction for pain in the shoulder study was 15% for those receiving sham treatment, 11% for those receiving PT, 10% for those receiving Reiki treatment and over 23% for those receiving Reconnective Therapy.


Baldwin, Ann Linda; Fullmer, Kristin & Schwartz, Gary E. (2013).

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2013.

Paleolithic art and religion

The assumption is that religion came about through our ancestors' curiosity. Through curiosity came supernatural beings. Interestingly, today's human being is not much different in that respect. We still rely on supernatural being to fulfill our curiosity when answers are not forth coming.


Hinnells, John R. (2007). New York; Cambridge University Press