Tonight I was walking into the corner store and sitting outside was a man smoking cigarettes and asking for change. Usually, I decline them, but tonight something moved me. When the man asked if I could spare any change I said, “Sure. I’ll give you all the change I have if you tell me something.”
He said, “What do you want to know?”
“What’s your passion?”
He looked at me quizzically and said, “What does that mean?”
“What fills your heart? What drives you onward?”
Without hesitation he answered, “Love, brother.”
As I was giving him my change, I asked him one final question. “What have you been doing to pursue that lately?”
He shook his head sadly and looked away. “Hell. I don’t even know anymore, man.”
I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately. I have a list of passions that fill my heart. But when I ask myself what I’ve been doing to pursue them, I have to admit to myself, “Hell. I don’t even know anymore man.” And why don’t I know? Why have I given up on all these things that add meaning to my life? I suppose for the same reasons most people do. Because we let life get in the way. We tell ourselves, “I’ll start on it tomorrow.” The only problem with that is Tomorrow never comes. It always turns into Today. And it’s always so hard to find the time today; there’s too much to do.
But what is passion? What does it mean? Ultimately, our passion is what we were put on earth to accomplish. What we individually do to make and leave the world a better place. But that has been distorted and confused. We live in a world where passion has been mistaken for emotional outbursts. Look at reality television. It’s nothing but cheap emotional manipulation saturated with advertisements. The same can be said for social media outlets. Every time I scroll through a feed I go through a range of emotions. This post makes me angry. This post makes me laugh. This post tugs at my heart-strings. This post wants me to buy a new razor. And on and on. These things aren’t passions they are sleazy emotional ploys. We shouldn’t be filling our heart with them. They give our lives no meaning. In fact, they only take from us. By the time I get to the bottom of the feed, I feel empty. I usually slam my computer shut in disgust and tell myself, “Way to go, genius, you just wasted another 20 minutes of your life.” So what’s the alternative? The answer to that is easy: force a change. If you know better, do better.
We let ourselves become convinced that happiness is this false sense of security called the American Dream and we’ve sacrificed our passions on the altar of this great god called Mammon. We’ve been conditioned all our lives to believe that if we do everything according to plan, go to school, get a job, make money, get a house, fill it with shit, then we are supposed to be happy. But that’s not the case. I see more and more people unhappy with their supposed achievements. But this doesn’t necessarily mean more and more people are realizing what they need to be doing is following their passion. Too many of us are immersing ourselves in an ever-expanding myriad of distractions in order to ignore the fact that we’re miserable and unfulfilled. We are all guilty of it. We can’t really blame ourselves too much, I mean, it IS the world we were born into. But it’s not the world that we have to live in. It’s not the world that we have to leave to our children.
Things are how they are because we’ve been fooled into accepting a fiction as reality. We CAN change. We CAN refuse to accept the lie and start living in truth. But in order to do that we have to start TODAY. Are you ready? If so:
What’s your passion?
And what have you done to pursue it lately?
Tags: America, American Dream, career, change, choices, Dream, emotional, emotions, fulfillment, happiness, heart, homeless, inspiration, job, life, love, materialism, money, passion, reality television, social media, today, truth, world, Writing
This is a continuation from yesterday’s Wisdomism. Hermes has told us to look with our hearts and be sober in order to see through and overcome the ignorance and deception running rampant in our world. Here, he gets a bit more specific on just how to do that. Enjoy!
“First you have to strip off the garment which you are wearing, the web of ignorance, the fabric of evil, the knot of destruction, the girdle of darkness, the living death, the sentient corpse, the portable tomb, the robber in your house, him who hates through what he loves and bears malice through what he hates.
Such is the hateful garment you wear, which binds you in itself lest, when you look up and see the beauty of truth and the Supreme Good which lies within, you should hate the evil of this garment and realize its treachery. This has ensnared you making the seeming senses, insensible; for it has blocked them up with much gross matter and filled them with loathsome pleasure, so you do not hear what you should hear and see what you should see.” Corpus Hermeticum Book 7
This “garment” we all wear is our connection to our egos which are entrenched in the physical world and continually seek material pleasures and comforts. We willingly blind ourselves to the deception around us in order to immerse ourselves in the distractions of the material world. Look around you. Do you see the multiple distractions that surround you even where you sit reading this? Humanity has not progressed. We have merely added more bells and whistles to distract us from the truth. And there are those who do not have our best interests at heart who continually play on and add to those distractions in order to keep us in a state of willing subservience.
The Pauline Christians tried to obliterate and discredit those they saw as Gnostic pretenders. They really did. But even the canonical books of the bible are full of Gnostic references. The entire Gospel of John, for instance, is seen by some to be a quasi-Gnostic tract that was written to combat Gnostic teachings. A Gnostic-Pauline text, if you will. Despite the battle between factions, the living truth can never be hidden. The Apostle Paul alludes to Gnostic teachings in his letter to the Ephesians. Enjoy!!
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age and against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)
Now understand that Gnostics talked quite frequently of the “principalities”, “powers”, “rulers of darkness” (i.e. human agents of evil) and “spiritual hosts of wickedness”. The difference was, they talked about them in different ways. Ways that other early Christian sects didn’t like. For instance, Gnostics thought that these principalities created our universe. They believed the real God existed in a realm apart from the gross material world and the principalities were warped reflections of His Glory. Being a reflection of God (warped or no) these entities tried to create. But they could only shape matter, not infuse it with life. It only gets more interesting from there.
Easy to see why the early Pauline sects didn’t like the Gnostics. They told the same story in a different way. They accused the Paulines of worshiping the false creator gods (or the principalities) and not the true God. This infuriated Paul (who reportedly had an already short fuse) and he and his followers lashed out. So like they did with so much of the world’s spiritual knowledge and practices, the Pauline Christians claimed what bits and pieces of Gnostic teaching they liked and then after demonizing the rest, threw it out.
When Emperor Constantine had his “conversion” on the battlefield and called early Christian leaders together to forge a new state religion, Gnosticism’s fate as heresy was sealed. Nobody said the struggle against the rulers of darkness of this age would be easy…
Tags: Bible, Christianity, church, Constantine, early christian sects, emperor constantine, Ephesians, Gnostic, Gnosticism, God, Holy Bible, Paul, Pauline, principalities, Religion, rulers of darkness, Salvation, spiritual hosts, Spirituality, theology, truth, Universe, wickedness
You asked for enlightenment and it was granted to you. Did you think it would be so easy after that? Did you expect to dine with Sophia and not have to pay the bill? Awakening is only the first step in a lifelong journey. In that journey we are supposed to transcend our humanity. To become one with God, as it were. This, we all know, is impossible. Because in the end, we are all human. Utterly, hopelessly, beautifully human. Despite our divine origins, our humanity remains. We feel. We love. We suffer. We sacrifice. And so you asked for enlightenment thinking that all the answers to life’s problems will be answered in a moment of brilliant clarity. This is not the case.
Enlightenment is understanding is awareness. Once you gain this sense of awareness, you start to become aware of things. And it is a dangerous thing to become aware of things. Things are devious by design, you see. And they hate when we become aware of them. It’s like peeking behind the curtain and seeing the puppet master pulling the strings. Things are a sham, you understand? It’s all a show. Smoke and mirrors. But things have a purpose and they defend that purpose with purposeful ferocity. That purpose is distraction. Things distract. There you have it. And once you enlighten up, you can see past those distractions.
Nothing is more ferocious than a distraction that fails to distract. Awareness infuriates all sorts of things. And things try even harder to distract. And those things ripple out into your world, alerting other things to your enlightenment. And then those things start to distract. But still you progress. You trudge on through hard times and good. You persevere. You grow in your enlightenment. And just when you think you’ve got it all figured out, then things get really pissed. So they start doing drastic things to pull you back down into distraction. Or what existentialists would call “the human condition”. Not surprisingly, since we are human we slip and we fall. Plummeting back into things. Southern Baptists have a good term to describe this: backsliding. Now to the Southern Baptists backsliding is when you quit drinking and start going to church only to start drinking and quit going to church. It’s much the same for enlightenment.
The fact of the matter is we are all mired in things. Even we are things. Distracting ourselves from our true purposes. Even distracting us from our own enlightenment. So people say, “Don’t let things get you down” and they always smile as they say it without ever knowing it is the key to understanding. Don’t let things get you down. And when things get you down, you get back up again. That’s right. No one is accepting the e-vite to your pity party. They’re too busy sending out their own.
Don’t forget, you asked for this. You wanted understanding. You wanted awareness. You wanted to see the puppet master. And so you have and now there is no turning back. Don’t blame things. Things can only be what they are. Things will get nasty. Things will get difficult. Suck it up and forge on through. For an aware individual, things will always get better. For an enlightened person everything offers understanding. So remember: When things get you down, enlighten up. Eventually, you’ll get there.
Tags: awareness, Distraction, e-vite, enlightenment, existentialism, hero's journey, human, human condition, humanity, Philosophy, pity, progress, Religion, self realization, self reflection, Sophia, Spirituality, things, truth, understanding, Wisdom
An old fragment, like a glimpse into another world I never got to explore. Enjoy!!
Whispered mumbling…almost ominous.
Followed by the clank of metal on metal.
The dreamscape pulls out to reveal two shadowed figures in cloaks. They are dimly lit by an eerie orange glow from behind. The impression of cobblestone under my feet becomes a reality. I don’t know how I manage to take all this down, my hands are shaking so bad. I’m not sure who they are—these cloaked figures. I’m not sure what they are doing, but the dread, the terror begins to sink its claws into my skull. And look, now I’m staring at black on white again. Words just tumbling onto this nonexistent paper like so many delicate drops of blood falling from an oblique hand—drip…drip…drip–with a methodical pitter-patter onto bone white parchment. Equally as nonexistent, but a lot more real than these invisible binary codes that follow my every sentence.
“There is a dark side to this. This violent dance of self important monkeys, this perpetual staccato razor blade rhythm, this coveted but mistrusted gift. I am not the evil that has come to destroy you, but the darkness that has come to liberate you.”
This is the manifesto that is pounded like a desperate symphony onto the screaming keys of an ancient typewriter. In the background is a large room fashioned from roughly cut stones, like something in a castle. A roaring fire lights the room as it warms. Medieval almost. And then the fingers once again begin their bleak concerto.
“I am staring off to my left. There is nothing. Just…nothing. I feel that at any moment my whole world could just topple over into this infinite space. Sometimes I feel the tremors of chaos rumbling beneath my flimsy plane of reality. They warn me, they are the harbingers of truth that reassure me that when it is all over, the world will be a much better place. A much purer one. But that small reassurance still won’t stop the nightmares.
I am the child of a lost generation. A generation discarded and scorned because we are the final prophets of a dying race. The last hope and the last great failure. We don’t need anyone’s prayers. We are the product of answered prayers. This is God’s plea to us all. His final proclamation before the universe corrects itself. We are fighters, we are healers we are the purest scapegoats a tainted world has to offer for sacrifice. This makes us cry. This makes us bleed. This makes us willing to ensure our martyrdom is for a reason…a higher purpose. We will not heed the ignorant demands of those who would discard us silently, stealthy and with dark and selfish intention. You want details. You want a story, I can tell. You want something you can wrap your brain around. Something to relate to. Well, shining inside the depths of every single word is a story. How can I tell them all? They really tell themselves.”
Honestly, I think the gentlemen is simply rambling at this point. I think he is masking something. The truth behind the veil.
Another piece from Rumi. Wisdom? Judgement? Even the wise judges can lose sight of their God-given wisdom. This is illustrated in the following poem: Enjoy!
SOLOMON’S CROOKED CROWN
Solomon was busy judging others,
when it was his personal thoughts
that were disrupting the community.
His crown slid crooked on his head.
He put it straight, but the crown went
awry again. Eight times this happened.
Finally he began to talk to his headpiece.
“Why do you keep tilting over my eyes?”
“I have to. When your power loses compassion,
I have to show you what such a condition looks like.”
Immediately Solomon recognized the truth.
He knelt and asked forgiveness.
The crown centered itself on his crown.
When something goes wrong, accuse yourself first.
Even the wisdom of Plato or Solomon
can wobble and go blind.
Listen when your crown reminds you
of what makes you cold toward others,
as you pamper the greedy energy inside.
This needs to be read and applied by EVERY world leader today. And a vast majority of the laity could benefit from this simple lesson too. Unfortunately, humanity has become too proud to kneel and ask forgiveness.