Week of August 6th, 2020

Finding Your Spiritual Home

You have the keys to promising doors that don't exist yet; save those keys.

You know the titles of rousing stories that haven't happened yet; write those titles down.

You've caught glimpses of your best future, but they're confusing because you can't yet imagine how you'll get to that future; imprint those glimpses on your memory.


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WHERE TO FIND YOUR HOME

"Find your home in the haunts of every living creature. Make yourself higher than all heights and lower than all depths. Bring together in yourself all opposites of quality: heat and cold, dryness and fluidity.

"Think that you are everywhere at once, on land, at sea, in heaven. Think that you are not yet begotten, that you are in the womb, that you are young, that you are old, that you have died, that you are in the world beyond the grave.

"Grasp in your thought all this at once, all times and places, all substances and qualities and magnitudes together. Then you can apprehend God."

—Hermes Trismegistus


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ACCEPTING THE FACT THAT I'M KIND

I'm often embarrassed in front of myself because I act so kind! Not only that, I think many, many kind thoughts when I'm all by myself! What a boring, uncool person I am!

I wish I had a knack for being a smooth ironically cynical edgy guy perpetually oozing satire and sarcasm! Sadly, Goddess didn't make me that way.

Oh, well. I accept myself as I am.


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LEAN IN CLOSE TO OTHER BEINGS

David Abram writes: "While this plague enforces a temporary distance from other humans, there is no reason not to lean in close to other beings, gazing and learning—for instance—the distinguishing patterns of the bark worn by each of the local tree species where you live.

"No reason not to step outside and pry open your ears, listening and learning by heart the characteristic songs and calls of the various local birds; no reason not to apprentice yourself to a spider as it weaves its intricate web in front of the porchlight.

"Or to practice recognizing and naming—as I have been—the different types of clouds that are conjured out of the blue by the scattered mountains in this region, the wispy brushstrokes and phantom ridges and clumped clusters that congregate and dissipate in the high desert sky.

READ MORE


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A READER PROTESTS MY LOVE OF GOD

A reader who calls herself Sally Skeptic wrote me the following email:

"Dear Rob: I sure don't like so much God stuff mixed into your various writings. Can you cut it out, please? I understand it's common for the desperate masses to believe in an Ultra Being, but you? Pul-lease. You're smarter than that. I just can't abide all the 'Divine Wow' and 'Cackling Goddess' nonsense that you dispense; it doesn't jibe with the practical, sensible, unsuperstitious, non-mushy world that I hold dear -- and that I see represented mostly accurately in your work. -Sally Skeptic."

Read my response to Sally Skeptic.


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RIVER I DREAM ABOUT
by Oliver Baez Bendorf

Moon river, swollen river, river of starhole
and bright, harness river, lichen river,
river we velvet with our filth.

River of butter and river of witches, river
cracked open careful like egg, or burst
apart, unleashing its violet load.

River mouths, river beds, every back
forty creek, every crick, made of
trickles, made of synth, river of sound
as vibration, river where we all get free.

River that curve down a backbone,
river through which I particle heat,
feathery and wet, lemony and loud,
river that still smell skin, browned
around a neck, softened with sweat,
river you wear tight on your hips,
given in private, or out in the open.

River I dream about.

River from the inside.

River where we shouts the feeling.

Septum river, bundle river, river of mercy,
sometimes edging so far into night
the moon goes (…) dark.

Yes, all night river, burnt sugar river.

We pull the river into our bellies, we
go out walking. We river in darkness
as entire paw prints of color and light.

Everything rivers in motion. River
of holy, river of freaks, river where
my fur belong to me. Softer than
it seem river. Honey and Vaseline river.

Brown river, black river, off the map river.

I will be there, printing textures of rock
on the skin of me, belly down, face down,
my god, it is good to be home.

by Oliver Baez Bendorf


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FREEDOM AND RESPONSIBILITY

Some Americans seem to believe that "freedom" means having no responsibility to other people and creatures

—even in the face of the fact that thousands of people have responsibly cooperated to build their roads, grow their food, make their medicine, sew their clothes, provide them with water, electricity, and garbage service, give them jobs, create their entertainment, and sustain their internet.


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SURVIVAL OF THE MOST COOPERATIVE

Many people assume that Charles Darwin was talking about physical strength when referring to "survival of the fittest," meaning that a tougher, more resilient species always will win out over its weaker counterparts.

But a new book says something else has been at work among species that have thrived throughout history, successfully reproducing to sustain themselves, and it has nothing to do with beating up the competition.

In fact, friendly partnerships among species and shared humanity have worked throughout centuries to ensure successful evolution. Species endure — humans, other animals and plants — based on friendliness, partnership, and communication.

READ MORE


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UNCONDITIONAL, by Jennifer Welwood

Willing to experience aloneness,
I discover connection everywhere;
Turning to face my fear,
I meet the warrior who lives within;

Opening to my loss,
I gain the embrace of the universe;
Surrendering into emptiness,
I find fullness without end.

Each condition I flee from pursues me.
Each condition I welcome transforms me
And becomes itself transformed
Into its radiant jewel-­like essence.

I bow to the one who has made it so,
Who has crafted this Master Game;
To play it is pure delight,
To honor its form -- true devotion.

—by psychotherapist Jennifer Welwood


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EVERY PERSON YOU MEET

"Every person you meet should be regarded as one of the walking wounded. We have never seen a man or woman not slightly deranged by either anxiety or grief. We have never seen a totally sane human being."

—Robert Anton Wilson


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FEAST DAY

Two weeks ago I celebrated the feast day of my beloved heroine, Mary Magdalene. I wrote about her extensively in my book The Televisionary Oracle. Here's a passage from the book:

Mary Magdalene was the visionary consort of Jesus Christ. Not a penitent prostitute, as the Christian church later distorted her in an attempt to undermine the radical implications of their divine marriage. Not an obeisant groupie who mindlessly surrendered her will to the man-god.

On the contrary. Magdalene was Christ's partner, his equal. More than that, she was his joker, his wild card: his secret weapon. They worshiped the divine in each other. So say the ancient texts of our mystery school.

But you need not believe the secret texts to guess the truth. Even the manual of the Christian church itself, as scoured of the truth as it is, strongly hints at Magdalene's majesty.

While all the male disciples disappeared during the crucifixion, she was there with Christ. While the twelve male disciples were cowering in defeated chaos, she was the first to find the empty tomb. Jesus appeared to her first after his resurrection; she was the first to be called by him to the mission of apostle.

The Gnostic texts from Nag Hammadi, discovered in 1947, reveal even more of their relationship, which violated all the social norms of their time. She was a confidante, a lover, an Apostle above all the other Apostles.

Jesus called her the "Woman Who Knew the All," and said she would rule in the coming Kingdom of Light. Even an early Christian father, Origen, helped propagate these truths, calling her immortal, and maintaining that she had lived since the beginning of time.


From the Gnostic Gospel of Thomas:

When you make the two one, and when you make
the inside like the outside and the outside
like the inside, and the above like the below
and the below like the above, and when you make
the male like the female and the female like the
male, then you will enter the Kingdom.


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Personal - by Tony Hoagland:

"Don’t take it personal," they said;
but I did, I took it all quite personal—

the breeze and the river and the color of the fields;
the price of grapefruit and stamps,

the wet hair of women in the rain—
And I cursed what hurt me

and I praised what gave me joy,
the most simple-minded of possible responses.

The government reminded me of my father,
with its deafness and its laws,

and the weather reminded me of my mom,
with her tropical squalls.

"Enjoy it while you can," they said of Happiness
"Think first," they said of Talk

"Get over it," they said
at the School of Broken Hearts

but I couldn’t and I didn’t and I don’t
believe in the clean break;

I believe in the compound fracture
served with a sauce of dirty regret,

I believe in saying it all
and taking it all back

and saying it again for good measure
while the air fills up with "I’m-Sorries"

like wheeling birds
and the trees look seasick in the wind.

Oh life! Can you blame me
for making a scene?

You were that yellow caboose, the moon
disappearing over a ridge of cloud.

I was the dog, chained in some fool’s backyard;
barking and barking:

trying to convince everything else
to take it personal too.

—Tony Hoagland


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SHOULD I CARE?

I consulted my spirit guides to ask if i should give a f*#%. They said, "Hell, yes."

More.


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