Category Archives: Basics

Spiritual Life Cycle

A defining moment in my life was when I saw someone talking with a gleam in their eye about a belief they had in a religion that I was not previously exposed to. The gleam of certainty in their eye made me realize that this was something greater and was part of human essence. Originally I thought that this was only the product of religion but now I realize that there can potentially be unlimited catalysts for it.

The cycle seems to be consistent regardless of medium. First, the ego is abolished and this is when a person goes through their first phase of having absolute truth. The actual physical truth isn’t necessarily important. This truth can be that Jesus is the truth, Islam is the truth, or an expression of a characteristic of God. What is important here is that the person feels an absolute, this is the real truth, the God like sensation of perfect justification. For the person the factual doesn’t really matter because the God like characteristic of justification that fills them overrides logic.

The initial expression of the temporary removal of ego will be the loss of self awareness. This will result in the person acting in ways that if they had their ego and knew the perception of others, they would immediately stop. This will usually result in the estrangement of friends and sometimes family. I remember hearing new Christians talk about how they lost friends after their conversion. I realize now that these losses are not the product of enlightenment but the product of selfishness because enlightenment doesn’t bring loss.

The removal of ego is ultimately temporary because it is an essential part of humanity but when the ego re-emerges it will find itself in a different position. How does selfishness reconcile with the absolute? The compromise is validation. Validation is what the individual will attempt to do when their ego resurfaces. A religious person might attempt conversion of others or a spiritualist will promote meditation or drugs. The mechanism is of little importance but what is important is that the person feels that they can justify the absolute they feel but having others feel it.

The problem is that they don’t have the absolute physical truth instead they have an absolute feeling. There real truth is in the feeling but their physical representation of it is incorrect. Not all religions will work for everyone and not all drug usage will result in spiritual awakening. This is by design. If we could have an absolute physical truth then transcendence would be impossible. There must be a conflict in physical spiritual truths in order for humanity to continually question and push boundaries.

The question is what is past the validation phase? I think for many there is not much. They will invest their entire lives trying to push their particular brand of spirituality on whoever will accept it. Even I have my own spiritual truth which I promote to justify my absolute feeling. Outside of these selfish desires for validation I do believe there is something more.

What is next is an internal maturing or an expression that happens within oneself that no one will ever see or hear about but instead they will experience it through invention and prosperity. When talking about God the most common adjective used today is love. I think this is an invalid characterization or a very basic human representation of perfect grace. Humans are not capable of perfect grace because no single human has everything. Since we cannot know perfect grace, we resort to the closest thing we know which is love. Love ultimately is a human trait that requires hate to exist. Grace transcends and encompasses love. Invention and prosperity is a means by which a person can act as a medium of grace and facilitate transcendence for the entirety of humanity.

Important Definitions

Spiritual/Physical Truth: Physical truth and spiritual truth needs to be distinguished here. I am by no means saying that physical truth can be rejected by how you feel. I am not endorsing rejecting physical facts to justify oneself. This kind of thinking would ultimately lead to corruption. For Example, physics is a physical truth and God being love is a spiritual truth.

Physical Spiritual Truth: This is something that someone believes in to justify their existence and how they feel about the universe. Physical/mental feelings such as love or religious “truths” I would put under the category of physical spiritual truth.

 

 

 

 

Presence

The above was taken during the Lo Krathong on Yi Peng (Full Moon Day). It is a festival where wishes are made and lanterns are floated in the sky. It is a very awe inspiring experience that feels magical.

We can garner a lot of insight on certain topics by the metaphors we voluntarily choose to use. Light is associated with good and darkness is associated with evil. If we simplify, evil could be associated with absence and good could be associated with presence. If we strive to create more presence, we are doing good and if our actions are creating absence, we are doing evil. To save a life creates presence and to murder creates absence. In these two examples we are talking about a literal physical presence.

Sometimes in life we are confronted with difficult moral and ethical situations. If the issue is complex we will have internal conflict regarding selfishness vs selflessness. In our world filled with technology and shifting cultural/social norms figuring out what is right vs wrong is sometimes not as easy as we would like it to be. The answer is we should try to be as present as possible in not only our lives but the lives of other; walk a mile in their shoes so to speak.

To look at the stars is awe inspiring. To look at the stars and feel present in the universe, realizing that the atoms that make you up are as old as the universe and will persist even after your current form, can be profound. Being truly present can be very difficult but also very rewarding.

Spirituality, Grace, & Travelling

I have started travelling the world. The above picture was taken while I was in Scotland. It is an odd thing to be blessed, odder still to be given such an opportunity.

Even though I have just started the experiences I am having are giving me an insight that I don’t think I would of arrived at if I had chosen security over The Flow. My decision to want to travel I knew was a requirement in my life if I wished to practice what I preached.

The biggest insight I had was that the most powerful force in the world is not necessarily love, but grace. Love is simply a product of grace. Grace can be conducted as a choice in the presence of all emotion including anger and hate. You can absolutely hate someone but choose to treat them with grace. Everything in the world could go wrong in your life and the universe could owe you an infinite debt and you can still choose to make the debt even larger with selflessness.

I am slowly also starting to understand the reality mask which is the state most of us live our lives in. There will be moments in our lives where we feel like we are connected with the universe and then we slip on the proverbial life banana which crashes us back into reality and makes us question our previous experiences.

The objective for us all should be to leave the reality mask which does nothing but force us to live a life of bedlam. To feel connected is far superior than feeling isolated and common.

Desperate Tactics

smoking-acneI recently had a phone call with someone over something business related and in the course of the call the person I was speaking with attempted to utilize multiple manipulation tactics to achieve their goal. This person didn’t have leverage on me but felt that only I could get what they desired. I have had similar experiences in the past but what made this one particularly interesting was that the following night of the call I had a dream that put desperate tactics into clarity.

In this dream I had taken up temporarily smoking (I don’t smoke) and I was in a movie theater. On me I had an almost finished cigarette that for some reason I was holding on to. Sitting in the row in front of me was a woman who upon looking at me and seeing the cigarette made it her sole mission to get me thrown out of theater. She left to look for management and when she did I discarded the cigarette and moved to the other side of the theater thinking that maybe I simply smelled like smoke and this woman would be satisfied with my move, she was not.

After being pulled from the theater I then began the task of trying to convince management that I didn’t actually smoke in the theater. However, it was the mission of the theater management not to believe me. I tried everything from begging to aggression, none of which worked. The entire time the thought that kept passing through my head was, “why did I ever start smoking in the first place?”

The utilization of desperate tactics is a method of trying to get something you currently don’t have, this much is obvious. However, desperation does not necessarily cause people to use desperate tactics. The use of desperate tactics is often the result of desperation and a personal mistake. When we put ourselves into desperation because of choices we make as opposed to the choices the universe makes for us we will be more likely to do things that are evil or underhanded. Why do we do this? Maybe we believe since we made the choices to get into the mess we are in that we can make choices via bad tactics to get out, unfortunately, this is rarely the case.

If you find yourself starting to utilize desperate tactics to get something you want, the next question should not be ‘what tactic you should I employ next’? but instead ‘what can I change in my life to avoid situations like this in the future’?

Discovering Corruption & Defining Morality

Discovering corruption is integral to the entire human experience. In an imperfect world our bodies are designed to try and fight anything that can hinder our progress and physically it takes the form of our immune system. Like many things in our lives, the body can be used as an example to explain larger more complex social issues that might seem unrelated.

When it comes to corruption, and by extension morality, the first thing to realize is that there is no perfect system yet. In the same way our immune system can fail, so can we when we try to identify corruption. While many argue about morality in terms of what is right, what is wrong, or if there is some divine origin or not, I see morality in a different way. Morality is merely our tolerance for things that may or may not get us to our perfect goal. I use the word may because it is really hard to know for sure if something we consider moral is indeed progressive in nature.

What we are constantly doing with morality is trying to find the “sweet spot”. The sweet spot is enough focus to move us forward but at the same time being able to allow things that would hinder us otherwise. Imagine you had to warm up a small point on a wall and you could either choose a laser or a flash light. The flash light, representing a large tolerance, could warm up the spot at a slow rate. The laser on the other hand could warm up the spot much quicker but it requires you to be on target. This has been the case with human morality since the dawn of time; trying to find the right amount of rules, not too many and not too few. Divine morality which people often call upon as a standard has deviated greatly in tolerance over time. If we look at Judaism for example, it has 613 Mitzvah (rules). Neo-Judaism, also known as Christianity, has significantly less. Using this example as a reference, Christianity would be the flash light where as Judaism would be the laser.

It is difficult for a lot of us to think in tolerance terms. Every action must be either right or wrong even though it is completely possible for an action to be simultaneously both right and wrong such as a person stealing food to feed their starving family. We, as architects of the future, have a challenge on our hands. As technology proliferates everything we do new questions of morality will need to be tackled. So how do we go about this?

Discovering Corruption
The easiest way is through modelling. The very idea of corruption is based around the idea that something should be one way but what is really happening is different. Our immune system functions by identifying things that don’t belong and this same method can be utilized for discovering corruption. When a model doesn’t exist, or needs to be changed, it can only be changed through a democratic function. Any kind of model change outside of a democratic function will ultimately not be able to survive and will collapse under the needs of the whole.

Once we have established a model then we can start seeking out the anomalies. Who is involved that shouldn’t be? Who is doing something they don’t regularly do? Once we establish for ourselves the way things should function it becomes much easier to figure out what is not functioning properly.

In real life practice we do this all the time and just don’t realize it. When a husband or wife suspects their mate of cheating it is because there is corruption present in their model of reality. It might be unconscious subtlety that makes the person believe they have some kind of intuition or special powers. In fact most things that could be considered exceptional intuition are a result of understanding models. You can actually utilize this method to gain intuition through basic deduction instead of relying solely on the itchy feelings you get.

In order to identify if there is corruption taking place follow these steps.

  1. Identify the Model
    This can be one of the most challenging parts but is the most important. Figure out what is “normal” or what “should” be happening. This can be challenging because what you consider to be normal might not actually be normal. The easiest way to figure out normal is to figure out long lasting precedents. While it is true corruption can be there from the start, this is not usually the case.
  2. Identify Anomalies
    What doesn’t belong? Again, this can also be difficult. You need to try and stay as objective as possible. If you feel something is wrong, you might have the need to prove yourself right. If you’re out to prove yourself right versus trying to discover true corruption you will identify things as deviant that actually aren’t. If you are emotionally invested in the potential corruption you think exists, it might be prudent to ask for feedback from a third party.
  3. Verify
    The final step is to do some kind of exploration to see if the anomalies you identified in step 2 are actually taking place and if they are a product of corruption. There is always the possibility that something might be off or different for valid reasons.

There is No Win

Humanity is obsessed with winning. Motivational speakers will make their living talking about how not to fail. However, the true reality of the world wouldn’t make for a very motivational speech.

There is no win that comes without a loss, to either yourself or others. For every victory there is some form of sacrifice that occurred to make the victory possible. The best athletes in the world will sacrifice their social lives, future career potential, and their daily comfort just so that they can win.

Most entrepreneurs will fail on average at least four times before achieving success. The biggest losses come when we are incapable of accepting the reality of loss in the creation of victory. A perfect example is in a relationship if one partner is incapable of accepting a loss. The obsessive need to win can destroy a relationship because compromise is a form of mutual loss. For a relationship to “win” there must be mutual loss.

Our primary perception of victory comes from human competition but this isn’t necessarily the best model to portray victory. This model of victory and loss does little to demonstrate balance of priorities. Instead of teaching our children that they can achieve certain things if they sacrifice other things, we teach them that they must simply be better than others. The other problem with the traditional model of victory and loss is it does a sore job of explaining that time sacrifice can possibly compensate for genetic inefficiencies.

The idea of sacrifice applies to the entire human race as well. All victories we have made as a race have come at some kind of loss. Almost every choice we make is on some kind of sliding scale and as the times change the scale size may vary but the scale never stops existing. It is important to realize that everything has a cost and we must understand the sacrifices we will need to make in order to achieve victory going forward.

Balancing Forces (Karma)

We talk about balancing forces regularly. The most common is this concept of Karma. Since Karma is religious concept with after life meaning, I am instead going to call it balancing force. There are two types of balancing forces in our world direct, and indirect. I am going to touch on both of these types in this article and also explain how you can utilize both of them to improve your life.

Indirect Balancing Force
A large amount of the time I hear people use the term karma in a sentence it is out of smite. You’re cut off while driving, someone gets the promotion you wanted, or you are bullied in high school. What do you say? “Those people are going to get what is coming to them!” The problem with this is that not only does this not help you, according to the way we believe balancing forces to work, you are probably completely wrong. Let me give you a scenario. Every day you got bullied in high school and all you could think was, “one day that bully will get what is coming to him.” The only problem is he actually did get what was coming to him every day when he went home and got beat by his parents. In this scenario, the positive points he gets at home is negated by his bullying. If there is a universal score board, he has nothing to lose or gain.

The real truth is that the universe doesn’t always work out the way we want it to. People who are mean and aggressive become rich and successful while other people who are very nice won’t be able to afford their mortgage. Now it is very true that there is a common story that exists where the mean jock will go on to work at a grocery store for the rest of his life and the quiet nerd will go on to be super successful, but this isn’t always the case.

If you want to believe in an indirect balancing force (Karma) you need to completely change how you view events that occur to you. When someone cuts you off in traffic instead of saying, “that person will get what is coming to them!” you need to say, “Thank you, this negative event you have caused me will make my future brighter.” Since you don’t have access to the universal score board, you have no idea what another person’s “score” is.

I personally don’t believe in a universal score board but I do believe in an indirect balancing force for another reason. We are all connected through our interactions. If I hold the door open for someone there is a connected event with that person that is created. If there is a person watching this occur, there is another connected event created. The combination of these connected events can have consequences on an individual. While it is impossible to predict ultimate outcomes, being mean to everyone is not going to have the best outcome.

Direct Balancing Force
Obviously relying on an indirect balancing force isn’t something most of us can be satisfied with. That is why we created systems of justice. Now these systems don’t always work as they should, but they are our first pass of bringing an ideal to reality. A direct balancing force also applies to when a person works very hard and is then rewarded for that hard work.

When it comes to direct balancing force there is really not that much to talk about because it is a force of our own creation so we have a general understanding of how it works and its current flaws.

Creating Reward Scenarios
Have you ever done something that you knew you were supposed to and then something positive happened shortly after? When positive things happen within a short time frame of an action we did, we sometimes like to create a relationship between the two and this is a very good thing.

Good things actually happen to us all the time but the problem is we can never be 100% sure why these good things happen. It could be that you are some how being rewarded for something you did, or it could be random. Regardless of why a good event occurs, you should associate it with an action you think most benefits your life.

This is partially deluding ourselves but it works out in our favor. If something good happens to you randomly and you accept it as random, besides possibly making you feel more lucky, the event has no force. Now if you believe the positive event was caused by something you did, then that event has more meaning. Depending on the positive event it may be impossible to know what actually caused it. It might very well be that it was caused as a reaction to something positive you did. If you can’t know, it is better to give the positive event some force to allow it to help shape your life for the better.