Archive for » February, 2012 «

“Celebrity”

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

The death of Whitney Houston has made me think how fragile life is and the illusion that is celebrity. I think of some of the great entertainers who died due to drug related addictions like Judy Garland, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Andy Gibb, Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse, Whitney Houston – to name a few – and I am deeply touched by the manner of their passing at a young age.

I know that unfortunately millions of people die due to drugs, but the impact of the death of a celebrity is so strong and felt on a worldwide scale because entertainers have an impact on our culture and our individual psyche.  These are the people we see as role models, these are the people we look up to and admire; we aspire to become as successful as they are, we strive to have what they have – the money, the talent, the fame, the glamorous lifestyle, – to have the best of the best that this world offers because at some level we all want the fairytale.

So we ultimately put them on pedestals because of their accomplishments in this material world, we are fascinated by them– but we forget that they are just as human as the rest of us with the same feelings, insecurities, indulgences, vulnerabilities – just like us, and we especially forget that on a spiritual level we are all the same, we are all special, we are all pure potential, we are One.

I am disillusioned by their deaths, I feel that mostly when we hear of a drug related death we tend to judge – he was a hoodlum or she was a street walker – and somehow we react as if they got what they deserved because of the lifestyle they led which was conduciveto such a fate.  However, when it is a celebrity we somehow excuse their behaviour and say it was the pressure of the limelight that led them to this unfortunate disease.  We tend not to judge them harshly and we justify their actions. One can blame fame, money, people in their lives etc. but at the end of the day it was their responsibility, the blame was ultimately their own as it is of any addict.  But we need to forgive.

I am angered by their deaths, I feel  as they got in life everything we associate with happiness in this world and they somehow wasted it, squandered it, and destroyed themselves by their addiction. It feels in a way that they were selfish, ungrateful and disrespectful to their talent because if they really cherished it they would not have become addicts. Their talent was cut short and somehow they robbed us of their gifts that were still due to manifest and meant to be shared with the world. But we need to forgive.

I am saddened by their deaths as these people who gave the world so much joy with their God-given talent were unable to find joy for themselves even with all the love and adoration they received from the world. They did not find their sacred Self deep within that is perfect and does not need the material world for happiness. They did not find their bliss – and neither will we if we do not get out of this grand illusion of the material world and get in touch with our authentic Self as the spiritual beings that we are.

However, at the end of the day, I feel very blessed and am very grateful to have been able to experience the joy they gave me through their talent,  the precious gifts they bestowed to all of us during their lifetime and beyond as their spirit will live forever. They will always be a part of my life.

Thank You and R.I.P.

I am reminded by two songs from one of my favourite bands, Styx,
that I can relate to with “celebrity”
and I herewith share these powerful and poignant lyrics with you:

“Show Me The Way”

(Band: STYX – Songwriter: Dennis DeYoung)

Every night I say a prayer in the hope that there’s a heaven
And every day I’m more confused as the saints turn into sinners
All the heroes and legends I knew as a child have fallen to idols of clay
And I feel this empty place inside so afraid that I’ve lost my faith

Show me the way, show me the way
Take me tonight to the river
And wash my illusions away
Show me the way

And as I slowly drift to sleep, for a moment dreams are sacred
I close my eyes and know there’s peace in a world so filled with hatred
That I wake up each morning and turn on the news
to find we’ve so far to go
And I keep on hoping for a sign, so afraid that I just won’t know

Show me the way, Show me the way
Take me tonight to the mountain
And wash my confusion away
And if I feel light, should I believe
Tell me how will I know

Show me the way, show me the way
Take me tonight to the river
And wash my illusions away
Show me the way, show me the way
Give me the strength and the courage
To believe that I’ll get there someday
Show me the way

Every night I say a prayer
In the hope that there’s a heaven…

 

“Grand Illusion”

(Band: STYX – Songwriter: Dennis DeYoung)

 Have you ever been sittin’ at home watchin’ television
and suddenly something comes on the TV and you say to yourself,
“Hey, how come my life ain’t like that?”
Or maybe you’re sittin’ lookin’ in a magazine,
you see some pictures, some advertising, you says,
“Man, I must really suck because my life sure ain’t like that.”
Did you ever feel that way? Yeah-
Well, you wanna know why your life isn’t like what you see on TV
and in movies, in magazines and such, you wanna know why?
‘Cause that’s all bullshit! That’s right-
Don’t you go believing movies and TV and rock videos and all that crap,
come on, I mean- All that is,
is somebody else’s fantasy, you know what I’m sayin’ to you?
In fact, all it is, is really more like a “Grand Illusion.”

Welcome to the grand illusion
Come on in and see what’s happenin’
Pay the price get your tickets for the show

The stage is set, the band starts playin’
Suddenly your heart is pounding
You’re wishing secretly you were a star

But don’t be fooled by the radio
The TV or the magazine
They’ll show you photographs
Of how your life should be
But they’re just someone else’s fantasies

So if you think your life is complete confusion
‘Cause you never win the game
Just remember that it’s a grand illusion
And deep inside we’re all the same
We’re all the same

So if you think your life is complete confusion
‘Cause your neighbor’s got it made
Just remember that it’s a grand illusion
Deep inside we’re all the same

America spells competition
Join us in our blind ambition
Get yourself a brand new motor car

But someday soon we’ll start to ponder
What on earth is this spell we’re under
We made the grade and still we wonder
Who the hell we are

AMAZON LINKS:

 

         

                   

Imagine

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

Imagine a world like John Lennon did ……

IMAGINE

 (John Lennon)

Imagine there’s no Heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today

Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say that I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world

You may say that I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one

AMAZON LINKS

         

Category: Films, Music  Tags:  Leave a Comment

The Art Of Reading

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

Hello Fellow Readers

My love affair with reading started at a very young age with Comics – yes, remember those?  The Archies – Betty & Veronica – Casper – Batman. They became my “friends” and I shared their adventures with my school friends as we exchanged comics.  Later as I teenager my love affair with reading continued with Enid Blyton: The Secret Seven and the Famous Five.  One of my favourite childhood books is Little Women by Louisa May Alcott – I wanted to be Jo March.  I also discovered the classics, wonderful books written by Charles Dickens and the Bronte sisters and off course, Shakespeare.  I then read Jonathan Livingstone Seagull which set me on the path to reading spiritual books by some of my favourite authors like Deepak Chopra, Neale Donald Walsh, James Redfield, to name a few.

Of course I am forever grateful to J.K. Rowling for the Harry Potter books as these books have brought the love of reading to millions of children of all ages.  J.K. got the world reading again and I hope that it lasts and that more books like these will be written to inspire people to read more.

With the way technology is today, many read online as well as on mobile phones and kindle, and even though I know that this is better for the environment as less trees need to be cut down to make paper, I just can’t stop the feeling that there is nothing like turning a page in a book.

I also love watching the movies of my favourite books and see how the authors images come to life on the screen –  but reading makes my imagination come alive, I create my very own  perception of how I visual the story, I am the director of my visualisation.  Reading is a love ritual! It starts off by going to the bookshop and walking down the aisles glancing at the bestsellers and at the various sections and finding the section I want. I then start looking more closely at the books on the shelves.  Then suddenly a book will “jump out at me”  somehow the book I am meant to buy at that time will “shine” and “stand out” from all the other books on the shelf.  Weird but true!  When this happens, I automatically buy the book without even looking at it more closely to see what it is about.

When I get home, I will make myself a cup of tea with cookies and then fluff the pillows and make myself comfortable on my bed.  Picking up the book, I read the back sleeve and I feel the right book has selected me as the topic is exactly what I needed to read about at that point in my life – synchronicity at work once again!  I will then open the book and gently break the spine by turning the pages at various random sections which then makes it easier for me to hold the book.  I love the touch of the pages and the smell of books.  Then I begin reading the first line….

My mind is so excited with the words I am about to enjoy, the adventures I will discover, the knowledge I will gain, the thrill of this special connection I will make with the story, the exciting characters I will meet and the relationship that I will develop with the author through his words – and ultimately sharing these books with others.  For me this is the Art of Reading, my special ritual – I would love to hear yours.

I am so grateful to everyone who put pen to paper
and gave me the joy of reading.
Thank You Thank You Thank You.

AMAZON LINKS  (Books & DVDs)

          
   
            

 

        

Love

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

 HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY
– fill each day with Love –

True love is unconditional.  To love unconditionally means that you love the person exactly as they are now and exactly how they will be forever and not try to change them. Love is spiritual, not bound by the material realm.  This is what makes love pure and authentic.  Therefore above all the most important love is that for God and Self.

I once again refer to my spiritual guide, Deepak Chopra and his book
The Path to Love”:  (to quote/paraphrase:)

This book is about reviving love stories that should never have faded. The union of self and spirit is not only possible but inevitable.
The spiritual meaning of love is best measured by what it can do,
which is many things…

Love can heal.
Love can renew.
Love can make us safe.
Love can inspire us with its power.
Love can bring us closer to God.

 Everything love is meant to do is possible. Knowing this, however, has only made the gap between love and non-love more painful.  Sad to say, many people enter lifelong relationships in which love fades over time or provides lasting companionship without growing in its inner dimension. A spiritual path has only one reason to exist: it shows the way for the soul to grow. As it grows, more of spiritual truth is revealed, more of the soul’s promise is redeemed. When you find your path, you will also find your love story. The path to love, however, is never about externals. The path to love therefore clears up a monumental mistake that millions of people make–the mistake that someone “out there” is going to give (or take) something that is not already yours. When you truly find love, you find yourself. Therefore the path to love isn’t a choice, for all of us must find out who we are. This is our spiritual destiny. The ultimate promise on the path to love is that you will walk in the light of a truth extending beyond any truth your mind presently knows. 

When you perceive yourself as spirit, you will not simply feel love – you will be love.

Be kind to yourself and others.
Come from love every moment you can.
Speak of love with others.
Remind each other of your spiritual purpose.
Never give up hope.
Know that you are loved.

 AMAZON  LINKS (UK£):                                                                                                                                                                                                

      

Herewith I share with you some of my favourite Love verses and poems – I hope you enjoy them on your path to love.

1 CORINTHIANS 13

I may be able to speak the languages of men and even of angels,
but if I have no love, my speech is no more than
a noisy gong or a clanging bell.

I may have the gift of inspired preaching;
I may have all knowledge and understand all secrets;
I may have all the faith needed to move mountains –
but if I have no love, I am nothing.
I may give away everything I have,
and even give up my body to be burned –
but if I have no love, this does me no good.

Love is patient and kind; it is not jealous or conceited or proud;
love is not ill-mannered or selfish or irritable;
love does not keep a record of wrongs;
love is not happy with evil, but is happy with the truth.
Love never gives up; and its faith, hope, and patience never fail.

Love is eternal. There are inspired messages,
but they are temporary; there are gifts of
speaking in strange tongues,
but they will cease; there is knowledge, but it will pass.

For our gifts of knowledge and of inspired messages
are only partial; but when what is perfect comes,
then what is partial will disappear.

When I was a child, my speech, feelings, and thinking
were all those of a child; now that I am an adult,
I have no more use for childish ways.

What we see now is like a dim image in a mirror;
then we shall see face-to-face. What I know now is only partial;
then it will be complete –
as complete as God’s knowledge of me.

Meanwhile these three remain: faith, hope, and love;
and the greatest of these is love.


“THE ROSE”
Written by Amanda McBloom
Sung by Bette Midler

Some say love, it is a river
That drowns the tender reed.
Some say love, it is a razor
That leaves your soul to bleed.
Some say love, it is a hunger,
An endless aching need.
I say love, it is a flower,
And you its only seed.

It’s the heart afraid of breaking
That never learns to dance.
It’s the dream afraid of waking
That never takes the chance.
It’s the one who won’t be taken,
Who cannot seem to give,
And the soul afraid of dyin’
That never learns to live.

When the night has been too lonely
And the road has been too long,
And you think that love is only
For the lucky and the strong,
Just remember in the winter
Far beneath the bitter snows
Lies the seed that with the sun’s love
In the spring becomes the rose.


“HOW DO I LOVE THEE? LET ME COUNT THE WAYS…”
Elizabeth Barrett Browning

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with a passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints, — I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! — and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

“THE MINUTE I HEARD MY FIRST LOVE STORY”
From  “Essential Rumi” Edited by Coleman Barks

The minute I heard my first love story,
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.
Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere,
they’re in each other all along.

“THE AWAKENING”
From “Love Poems of Rumi”
Edited by Deepak Chopra

 In the early dawn of happiness
you gave me three kisses
so that I would wake up
to this moment of love

I tried to remember in my heart
what I’d dreamt about
during the night
before I became aware
of this morning of life

I found my dreams but the moon took me away.
It lifted me up to the firmament
and suspened me there.
I saw how my heart had fallen
on your path singing a song

Between my love and my heart
things were happening which
slowly, slowly
made me recall everything

You arouse me with your touch
although I can’t see your hands
You have kissed me with tenderness
although I haven’t seen your lips
You are hidden from me

But it is you who keeps me alive
Perhaps the time will come
when you will tire of kisses
I shall be happy
even for insults from you
I only ask that you
keep some attention on me

 AMAZON LINKS (US$)

      

Category: Books  Tags:  2 Comments

Success – What is It?

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS
“There is only one success–to be able to spend your life in your own way”
Christopher Morley
“My definition of success is to live your life in a way that causes you to
feel a ton of pleasure and very little pain –
and because of your lifestyle, have the people around you
feel a lot more pleasure than they do pain”
Tony Robbins
“Success is the continued expansion of happiness and the progressive realization of worthy goals”
Deepak Chopra

Success is a subject that I have given much thought to due to recent circumstances of my life and knew it would be the topic of my 2nd blog.

I moved from Johannesburg to London three years ago to make a better life for myself.   Events made me yearn for a major change to inject new energy into my life.  So I left a life where I had a career, a home of my own and some level of material comfort and came alone to a strange city where I had no support system and no job due to the current economic recession which is a financial burden I was not expecting.   I really moved out of my comfort zone and embraced the unknown in a big way!

“An integral being knows without going, sees without looking,
and accomplishes without doing”
Lao Tzu 

Our culture’s standard definition of success is based on achieving money, fame and power which are connected to material gain and external recognition – and we are judged by the measure of these accomplishments.  Therefore, according to society’s definition of success, this move to London would then make me a failure – so why then I am so happy?

Because I side with the belief that authentic success is when you have faith, self-awareness, knowing who you really are and what you want, and then you can fulfil your own definition of success not society’s definition.  Then only is it real, true, meaningful and uniquely your own.  Your definition reaches clarity when you take an inner journey going deep within yourself to the seat of your soul and truly realize the magnificent spiritual being that you are and what the desires of your soul are.

Success is a soulful process, not limited to just one aspect of life, it has many layers at various points in life.  True success should be specific to you and your desires; it is subjective as what success means to one, can be very different for another.  When you follow your joy and believe you received the favourable outcome to an action because it is what your heart desires in the present, that for me is authentic success.

“Like two golden birds perched on the selfsame tree,
intimate friends, the ego and the Self dwell in the same body.
The former eats the sweet and 
sour fruits of the tree of life,
while the latter 
looks on in detachment”
The Mundaka Upanishad 

I have faith that at the right time I will find my ideal job in the Incentives & Events Industry as it is my passion to give people the gift of travel.  But until then I will be a “tourist” and relish the wealth of gifts I cherish like the freedom to go for walks in the many parks, enjoy culture, theatre, museums, bus rides and tourist sites at my fingertips to enjoy on a daily basis.  I also have the time to read and blog! My decision to move to London, therefore has been the best decision I ever made as I feel more free, joyful and fulfilled than ever – and it shows, my  friends even refer to London as my lover and call me “Lon-garita” (London/Margarita).

“Follow Your Bliss”
Joseph Campbell

I always ask the universe to send me signs for answers, clarity and validation to decisions I made – I am a big believer in synchronicity – and once again I was not disappointed.  I decided to start attending spiritual talks organised by Alternatives every Monday night in St James’s Church.  I had no idea who the speaker was nor what the topic was until I arrived there and discovered it was Robert Holden discussing “Authentic Success” from his book “Success Intelligence” – coincidence, I think not! It was an amazing talk and I have started reading his book! Thank you Robert.

I tend to focus on what I have at this present moment instead on what I have not.   I also have faith that I will achieve my goals when it is the right time in my life to do so.  I am truly blessed and grateful for my self-power and the wealth in my life which makes me feel authentically successful.

I am especially grateful to Deepak Chopra, my spiritual teacher, for his book “The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success” which I would like to share with you in the hope that you will receive joy and guidance from it as I did as it resonates with my belief system.

(I summarize/paraphrase/quote Deepak Chopra
“The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success”):

Deepak Chopra defines success  as follows:

1) the continued expansion of happiness and the progressive realization of worthy goals;
2) the ability to love and have compassion;
3) to be in touch with the creative source inside you enabling you to create something of value that was not there before;
4) to ultimately move from success to significance for the common good

“You are what your deep, driving desire is. As your desire is, so is your will.
As your will  is, so is your deed.  As your deed is, so is your destiny.”
Brihadaranyaka Upanishad IV.4.5 

Dr Chopra says that somehow, in modern society, wealth and money have become equated.  Money is not wealth.  Wealth, which comes from creativity, in its true sense, is success.  True and lasting success is an internal process, a journey which has very little to do with what goes on externally. When you realize you are not your body, but that you essentially are a spiritual being having a human experience, you can start to shift your attention to creating authentic success and having fun along the journey.  True success is the unfolding of the divinity within us. When we begin to experience life as the miraculous expression of divinity–then we will know the true meaning of success.

Applying the “The Seven Spiritual Laws Of Success” in your life can create whatever you desire:

1)  The Law of Pure Potentiality:
The source of all creation is pure consciousness
pure potentiality seeking expression from
the unmanifest to the manifest.
And when we realize that our
true Self is one of pure potentiality,
we align with the power that manifests everything in the universe.

Applying the Law of Pure Potentiality:
be silent and meditate
practice non-judgement
commune with nature

 2) The Law of Giving (and Receiving):
 “The universe operates through dynamic exchange
giving and receiving are different aspects of
the flow of energy in the universe.
And in our willingness to give that which we seek,
we keep the abundance of the universe circulating in our lives.

Applying the Law of Giving:
bring a gift to all you meet
gratefully receive all the gifts that life offers
keep wealth circulating

 3) The Law of Karma (or Cause and Effect):
 “Every action generates a force of energy
that returns to us in like kind
what we sow is what we reap
And when we choose actions that bring happiness and success to others,
the fruit of our karma is happiness and success.”

Applying the Law of “Karma” or Cause and Effect:
witness the choices you make in each moment
ask yourself two questions:
“What are the consequences of this choice I am making?”
“Will this choice bring fulfillment and happiness to all?”
ask your heart for guidance

4) The Law of Least Effort:
 “Nature’s intelligence functions with effortless ease
with carefreeness, harmony, and love.
And when we harness the forces of harmony, joy, and love,
we create success and good fortune with effortless ease.

Applying the Law of Least Effort:
practice acceptance and know that this moment is as it should be
take Responsibility for your situations
know that every problem is an opportunity in disguise
ensure your awareness remains established in Defenselessness

5) The Law of Intention and Desire:
 “Inherent in every intention and desire is the mechanics for its fulfillment
Intention and desire in the field of pure potentiality
have infinite organizing power.
And when we introduce an intention in
the fertile ground of pure potentiality,
we put this infinite organizing power to work for us.

Applying the Law of Intention and Desire:
make a list of your desires
release this list  and surrender it to the womb of creation, trusting
practice present-moment awareness in all your actions

6) The Law of Detachment:
 “In detachment lies the wisdom of uncertainty
in the wisdom of uncertainty lies the freedom
from our past, from the known,
which is the prison of past conditioning.
And in our willingness to step into the unknown,
the field of all possibilities,
we surrender ourselves to the creative mind
that orchestrates the dance of the universe.

Applying the Law of Detachment:
commit yourself to detachment
and freedom to allow things to be as they are
factor in uncertainty as an essential ingredient of your experience
step into the field of all possibilities and anticipate the excitement
that can occur when you remain open to an infinity of choices

7) The Law of “Dharma” or Purpose in Life:
Everyone has a purpose in life
a unique gift or special talent to give to others.
And when we blend this unique talent with service to others,
we experience the ecstasy and exultation of our own spirit,
which is the ultimate goal of all goals.

Applying the Law of “Dharma” or Purpose in Life:
lovingly nurture the god/goddess
in embryo that lies deep within your soul
make a list of your unique talents and what you love to do
use your talents in the service of humanity
ask questions:  “how can I serve?” and “how can I help?”

Through my journey of the Self, I have made many mistakes and faced many obstacles which I view  as gifts to be harnessed as building stones to a stronger foundation.  So as I continue to write my own “success story” I ensure that I live in the awareness of the present moment so that through my way of life I can live up to my highest potential and be the grandest version of myself in unity with the I Am.

 
“I want to know God’s thoughts… the rest are details”

Albert Einstein 

AMAZON LINKS:

     


“Jonathan Livingston Seagull” A Journey Of “How To Know God”

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Delicious
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • Add to favorites
  • Email
  • RSS

Dear fellow bloggers

I decided to create a blog to share my views on experiences that enlighten me, give me joy and make me grow and hopefully would do the same for whoever read my blog.  I wanted to have a Soul 2 Soul discussion.

Sitting on a bench by the River Thames in London, listening to music on my mobile while contemplating what my first blog post should be, Neil Diamond’s “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” track started to play.  As synchronicity would have it, right at that very moment some people started to throw bread into the river and suddenly a flock of Seagulls flew in.  The timing startled me and I observed the seagulls as the haunting music and Neil’s beautiful voice and powerful lyrics soared in my soul.

I started looking out for “Jonathan” and sure enough I found him, cause just above the flock was a solitary seagull observing the scene from high above.  I felt the chills and then memories flooded in of my 15 year old self many many years ago sitting in my school auditorium in Johannesburg watching the movie “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” on the big white screen because I loved Neil Diamond’s music.  To this day I still feel the profound impact this movie and the book by Richard Bach had on me.  I wish now that I had not got rid of my diaries when I decided to move to London so that I could have read exactly what my 15 year old self felt at the time, but I know for sure that it set me onto a path I have followed since … my very own journey into the Self.

The fable of “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” is of a bird determined to be more than ordinary, a bird that dared to question and dared to dream of seeking a higher purpose in life.  His lack of conformity to the limited seagull life leads him into conflict and is outcast by his flock so his journey begins.  He learned from all of his efforts that there are no limits and he could do anything, if he wanted it badly enough.  With each flight to better himself, he soars to higher levels of awareness of Self and God, becoming a teacher/guide to others.  He realizes that you have to be true to yourself: “You have the freedom to be yourself, your true self, here and now, and nothing can stand in your way”.  He believes that human and God, regardless of the all immense difference, are sharing something sacred that binds them together: “Each of us is in truth an idea of the Great Gull, an unlimited idea of freedom”.  By not compromising his beliefs and his higher vision, he gets the ultimate payoff: transcendence and learns the meaning of love, kindness, forgiveness and grace.

Observing the seagulls it dawned on me that Jonathan’s journey so aligned and linked with what Deepak Chopra wrote many years later in one of my favourite books “How To Know God” which I had just finished re-reading – to paraphrase/quote – that the brain is hardwired to know God because the human nervous system has seven biological responses that correspond to seven levels of divine experience.  These are avenues to attain some aspect of God and with each level of fulfilment proving God’s reality at that level.

Level 1 (Fight-or-Flight Response):
God is the Protector
World of bare survival
I am a Survivor
I cope
I find God through fear & devotion
My life’s challenge is to survive & protect
My greatest strength is courage
Biggest hurdle is fear of loss & abandonment
Greatest temptation is tyranny
You fulfill your life through family, community, a sense
of belonging and material comforts.

Level 2 (Reactive Response):
God the Almighty
World of competition & ambition
I am Ego/Personality
I win
I find God through awe & obedience
My life’s challenge is maximum achievement
My greatest strength is accomplishment
Biggest hurdle is guilt & victimization
Greatest temptation is addiction
You fulfill your life through success, power, influence,
status and other ego satisfactions.

Level 3 (Restful Awareness Response):
God of Peace
World of inner solitude & self-sufficiency
I am Silent Witness
I stay centered
I find God through meditation & silent contemplation
My life’s challenge is to be engaged & detached
My greatest strength is autonomy
Biggest hurdle is fatalism
Greatest temptation is introversion –
You fulfill your life through peace, centeredness,
self-acceptance and inner silence.

Level 4 (Intuitive Response):
God the Redeemer
World of insight & personal growth
I am Knower Within
I understand
I find God through self-acceptance
My life’s challenge is to go beyond duality
My greatest strength is insight
Biggest hurdle is delusion
Greatest temptation is deception
You fulfill your life through insight, empathy,
tolerance and forgiveness.

Level 5 (Creative Response):
God the Creator
World of art, invention & discovery
I am Co-creator
I intend
I find God through inspiration
My life’s challenge is to align with the Creator
My greatest strength is imagination
Biggest hurdle is self-importance
Greatest temptation is solipsism
You fulfill your life through inspiration, expanded creativity
in art or science and unlimited discovery.

Level 6 (Visionary Response):
God of Miracles
World of prophets, sages & seers
I am Enlightened Awareness
I love
I find God through grace
My life’s challenge is to attain liberation
My greatest strength is holiness
Biggest hurdle is false idealism
Greatest temptation is martyrdom
You fulfill your life through reverence, compassion,
devoted service and universal love.

Level 7 (Sacred Response):
God of Pure Being – “I Am”
God created a Transcendent World
I am the Source
I Am
I find God by transcending
‘Good’ is the union of all opposites
‘Evil’ no longer exists
My life’s challenge is to be myself
My greatest strength is unity
Biggest hurdle is duality
Greatest temptation is beyond temptation
You fulfill your life through wholeness and unity with the divine.

To paraphrase/quote Deepak Chopra from his book and interview on Larry King – his definition of G-O-D : is the Generator, the Organizer and the Deliverer of the universe.  We tend to make the mistake and project how we think of ourselves onto divinity, as shown in the 7 levels of thinking, but divinity being infinite, unbounded, eternal, beyond space and time, is not a he or a she, but a field of intelligence, pure being and infinite potential.  It would take you progressively to increasing levels of understanding until you actually could become intimate and one with it and experience it within yourself.  As Christ has said, “The kingdom of Heaven is inside you”.  If you go in the gap within your thoughts, which is the window to your soul, you start to eavesdrop on the cosmic mind – “Be still and know that I am God”.  If you know God, you will have the ability to love and have compassion.  You have the ability to experience spontaneous joy and spread it to others, you have a sense of meaning and purpose in your life and you have a sense of connection to the creative force of the universe, which expresses itself as your own creativity.  The more you begin to understand the mystery and wonder of who you are, the more automatically you have reverence and feeling of the sacred.

On his journey of the Self, Jonathan climbed his ladder of the 7 levels found in HTKG book.  He met God in the Transition Zone/Quantum Domain – the “filling” of the “reality sandwich” Chopra describes where Man and God do meet – “the two slices of bread” of the sandwich being God/Virtual Domain and Material World/Reality.  Thus Jonathan learned How To Know God and how to live in sacred unity with the “I Am”.

Jonathan climbed his ladder of the 7 levels found in HTKG book.  As per the “reality sandwich” Chopra describes where Man and God do meet ie.  “the two slices of bread” of the sandwich being God/Virtual Domain (the field of Spirit) and the Material World/Reality (the field of physical existence) and the “filling”, the “meeting place” in between the sandwich is the Transition Zone/Quantum Reality Domain (the field of Mind) – where Man and God do meet.  Thus on his journey of the Self, Jonathan found his bliss as he learned “How To Know God” and how to live in sacred unity with the “I Am”.

Therefore during our journey, as we gain insight and awareness and come to know God and Self better through climbing our own ladder of these 7 levels of experience, we accomplish our longing to have direct experience of divinity.  As Deepak Chopra writes “God is our highest instinct to know ourselves”.

This is what Jonathan discovered on his journey and this is the quest that each of us are on – the journey into the Self with God.

          “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” by Neil Diamond 

And then begins a journey
A story as old as time
The tale of the dream and              the dreamer
A reflection of that spirit
that lives within us all
Our case in point one
Jonathan Livingston Seagull
Lost
On a painted sky
Where the clouds are hung
For the poet’s eye
You may find him
If you may find him
There
On a distant shore
By the wings of dream
Through an open door
You may know him
If you may
Be
As a page that aches
for a word
Which speaks on a theme
that is timeless
And the Sun God will
Make for your day
Sing
As a song in search of a
voice that is silent
And the one God will
Make for your way
That we dance
To a whispered voice
Overheard by the soul
Undertook by the heart
And we may know it
If you may know it
While the sands
Would become the stone
Which begat the spark
Turned to living bone
Holy, holy
Sanctus, Sanctus
Be
As a page that aches
for a word
Which speaks on a theme
And for the first time he
asked a question
And for the first time he
needed the answer
Dear Farther we dream,
we dream, we dream
While we may
And who are we to need
We need, we need
While we wait, while we wait
So Jonathan began
what was to be
the longest journey of all
the journey into the self
Lonely looking sky
Lonely sky, lonely
looking sky
And being lonely
Makes you wonder why
Lonely looking sky
Lonely looking night

And the Sun God will
Make for your day
Sing
As a song in search of a voice
that is silent
And the one God will make
for your way
And being lonely
Never made it right
Lonely looking night
Sleep we sleep
For we may dream
While we may
Dream we dream
for we may wake
One more day
Glory looking day
Glory day, glory looking day
And all its glory
Told a simple way
Behold it if you may
Glory looking day
Lonely looking night
on a lonely looking sky
Sanctus Kyrie Sanctus Kyrie
Kyrie Gloria Gloria
Holy Holy, Holy Gloria
Skybird
Make your sail
And every heart will know
Of the tale
And for the farthest shore skybird
Songbird
Make you tune
For none may sing it
Just as you do
Make your song be heard songbird
Look at the way I glide
Caught on the wind’s
lazy tide
Sweetly how it sings
Rally each heart at the sight
Of you silver wings
Skybird, skybird
Nightbird
Find your way
For none may know it
just as you may
Sing out your heart little nightbird
Make your song be heard songbirds
Rally each heart at the sight
Of you silver wings
And with this insight came
a new beginning
And with this new beginning came
a new understanding
That we dance
To a whispered voice
Overheard by the soul
Undertook by the heart
And we may know it
If you may know it
While the sands
Would become the stone
Which begat the spark
Turned to living bone
Holy, holy
Sanctus, Sanctus

(I would like to take this opportunity to thank Neil Diamond, Richard Bach and Deepak Chopra for the joy they bring to me)

AMAZON LINKS:

    Book                 Book                  DVD                     CD