Tag Archives: wisdom

The Stickiness of Soul Stories (and how to become unstuck)

I like to think of we individual human beings as bits of consciousness, embedded within greater fields of consciousness. Each of us is potentially evolving in awareness and understanding. Yet many of us remain stagnant, stuck in the world of the mind and it’s stories and beliefs.

This is very important to understand, because right now the human species is in a vastly accelerated transition phase of physical and consciousness evolution. This present time represents an incredibly rare opportunity for personal growth for the soul. To be unaware of this – and instead remain stubbornly locked in a rigid and inflexible story – is tragically wasteful.

The physical aspect of this evolutionary expansion has emerged via the technology which now allows us to manipulate genetic codes. This, combined with a massive and exponential capacity to store and process information via computers, means that evolution is no longer merely in the hands of the “gods.” We all have incredible power in our hands, a power that our ancestors could never have dreamed of.

The question then becomes: can we match this incredible physical evolution with a corresponding mental and spiritual evolution? This is of vital importantance. If we do not balance these two domains of evolution, then there is a strong possibility that we will abuse the power that we are being given. We are already abusing it in so many ways, as we all know from reading the daily news feed. How then, can we correct this imbalance?

Our education systems must make curriculum time for psycho-spiritual development. This must include not only conscious-mental reflection, but must help the young practice mindfulness and meditative presence. Without the capacity for meditative presence there is no chance for a person to be able to develop the capacity to witness the mind. And without the ability to witness mind, one remains imprisoned in whatever story the mind puts forward. And in turn that story will almost certainly be the one that reflects the trauma contained within our personal and karmic history.

When we fall for the delusion that we are the mind, we become stuck in the stories of the mind, in the pain of the past. And stories are very, very sticky.

From a grand cosmic perspective, you as an individual being trapped in a self-limiting story for a lifetime or a hundred lifetimes is a mere twinkling of starlight. Cosmic time dwarfs human mind-time. This is important to grasp, as there is no emergency from a grand perspective. And that means your getting stuck in the evolutionary mud is perfectly permissible in the greater scheme of things.

The truth is that most of our stories are a bit nasty, rather unpleasant and with more than a little suffering. There’s something wrong with me. I messed up. I’m not good enough. Basically, I suck and I got to try like hell to unsuck!

We also carry a story about the the world, and the themes tend to be repetitive. People can’t be trusted. They are mean and stupid, and trying to repress me. I’m a victim. The world is cruel, and we have to fight for survival. What is the point of trying anyway, when we all die?

The great news is that in perfect presence our stories dissolve, and along with them the suffering and fear that emerges from remembered pasts and fearful futures. So it is that our most empowered expression as individual humans arises in the present moment. The present moment permits a resplendent intelligence to emerge, a wisdom that simply cannot flower when we are stuck in the mind. In a seeming irony, perfect presence permits a far greater sense of the unfolding future. This is why wisdom is a natural expression of presence. We have a potential to make far smarter choices while in presence.

Most of us remain fixed in the world of story, and mostly this is because we are not present. We are not really in the wold when we are not present. We are living in an imaginary world of illusion, painting the world with such thick, dark colours that it’s natural light cannot be seen.

The mere acknowledgement that you are operating in the world of story is enough to dissolve the story, if only for a short time. The great news, as spiritual teacher Leonard Jacobson often says, is that presence never leaves us. It is we who leave presence. Yet the mere realisation that we are not present is an invitation to presence. With just a little understanding of what is required, we can return to presence whenever we wish. It truly is simple. Just be present with the body, the breath, or whomever or whatever you are with.

Once we are free of the story, we may begin to consciously construct a new, more desirable story, if that is what we wish. We can then play in the world of time and space again, only with greater awareness, joy and wisdom.

What story will you choose? And why?

The 12 Secrets of Profound Intuition

This post is part of a series I am writing here on consciouslifenews.co about how to develop powerful intuitive skills (integrated intelligence). Integrated intelligence is closely related to the classical idea of intuition, connecting us with a stream of consciousness which transcends the limits of immediate space and time. Each of these posts is an extract from my upcoming book “How to Develop Profound Intuition.”
I have been employing intuitive intelligence for many years. During this time I have learned a great deal about how it works, why it sometimes doesn’t, and the common pitfalls people make when using such “integrated intelligence”. Normally I wouldn’t give away these hard-earned secrets for free (or for the mere price of the little upcoming book this article is taken from, How To Develop Profound Intuition). But I need the good karma.

So here we go. You may have seen some of these stated or implied in earlier articles, but it won’t hurt for you to see them again in this context, as a little repetition will help you realise how important they are.

1) Not all feelings are intuitions. Feelings arise from the mind-body system for various reasons. Some are conditioned or biological responses, like sexual attraction, fear of snakes, disgust, or physical pain responses. Just because you get a feeling deep in your loins for a beautiful woman or a handsome guy doesn’t mean it is an instruction from God to begin fornicating with them.

Your biological conditioning generates feelings, and these sensations may bubble up from the subconscious of their own accord. If a dog bit you when you were seven years old, it’s quite likely that you will have a conditioned fear response to dogs. This fear may be detected by any given dog you meet in your current life, and the dog may even respond aggressively as a result. Yet the key point in this scenario is that your initial feeling may have nothing to do with any threat or intention the dog initially has – the feeling emerges from your own biological conditioning. The dog just plays along.

Thoughts also produce feelings. Imagining something desirable or fearful produces an emotional reaction, for example. Conversely, intuitions (at least as I define them) emerge from an empathic connection with a person, entity, collective consciousness field, thing, event, time or place (and often a mixture of several of these at once).

And here is what you must realise. Feelings that emerge from the imagination, conditionings, biology etc. are largely indistinguishable from the feelings produced by intuition (although many intuitions tend to be more subtle). Therefore, the best way to develop profound intuition is to first quiet the mind, then focus upon the thing you wish to “know”, while in a state of presence.

Secondly, if you have a spontaneous “intuition” about something, simply relax and reflect upon how that feeling emerged within your mind. Were you imagining a fearful or desirable future? Do you have any bias, conditioned attitude or beliefs about the object of your intuition? If so, you might like to question the validity of the feeling.

After working with intuition for some time, it is often unnecessary to be so deliberate with checking them. You will become quite adept at discerning the distinctions amongst all these mental operations. Then you will often be absolutely certain of an intuition without needing to analyse it in at length.

2) Not all intuitions are feelings. I believe feelings are the most important kind of intuitions, and the kind that can be most readily developed. Intuitions can also be visual, auditory and olfactory, but these tend to be most pronounced in the gifted. The good news is you don’t need to be gifted, have opened your third eye or reached enlightenment to have feeling-based intuitions. They are innate to the human organism – and to many animals – and they probably emerge from evolutionary imperatives, at least in part.

3) The best intuitions to act upon are those that are either strongly positive or negative. I have found this to be true from experience. When your intuition tells you the situation is clearly good or bad, trust the process and follow through.

Nonetheless, many situations and problems are multi-faceted. Any given thing, place, past or future may have both positive and negative components. For example, some years ago I travelled to Thailand for a week’s holiday. I had a fun time, most memorable indeed. However, on the first day the ATM machine must have been a little hungry, because it ate my bank card – leaving me largely penniless, and without even enough money to pay for a hotel room. It was an absolute nightmare trying to get money wired through to a Thai bank. It took a full week. Yet serendipitously, I met a Thai woman who let me stay at her place for free. Well, almost for free, as the were one or two “requirements” on my behalf. Let’s just say the arrangement was highly agreeable to both of us.

I wonder what intuitions I would have gotten if – before travelling to Thailand – I had used an intuitive process to ask the universe “Will I have a fun time travelling to Thailand this summer?”

When intuitions are mixed or vague and you have time to spare, either wait for clearer guidance or begin to conduct research so that you gain more knowledge of the situation. Then you will be able to analyse the problem and make a more informed choice.

4) You do not need to be psychic to develop intuition. Some people have innate psychic and visionary capacities, and this may include the ability to connect with realms of being that normal humans just can’t see or hear. At least in some cases, including my own, this may involve the opening of the third eye. Major life events such as near death experiences or crises may also trigger an opening of those psychic channels. Such people may communicate with spiritual entities, or be able to perceive the thoughts within other minds. I know this seems incredible to sceptics, but I know it to be true from my own experience.

The key point is, you do not need to become the next Uri Geller to develop great intuitive abilities, because the simplest and often most profound intuitive capacities emerge from the feeling sense, and we all have that capacity. It’s just that most people have never spent the time to develop that intelligence. You too can develop that capacity, regardless of your sex, age or other abilities or non-abilities.

5) You do not need to be an enlightened master to develop profound intuition. You merely need to develop the capacity to trust your intuitive prompts and act wisely, based upon them. One of my favourite teachers, Leonard Jacobson likes to say that anytime you are fully present, you are an awakened being. Yet the difference between the awakened master and the novice is that the novice soon allows his mind to drift back into the world of thoughts, projections and stories. But even if you are a novice, you can develop the capacity to be fully present at will, where genuine intuitions are best accessed.

6) You strengthen intuition by trusting it and acting upon it. To do this you are going to have to be prepared to be wrong – because you WILL be wrong at times. Intuition is a fuzzy intelligence. It isn’t completely reliable. When you are wrong, simply admit it. Go back in your own mind and analyse the process you used. Did you allow the projections of your mind to influence your decision?

Begin practicing intuitive decision-making by investing in situations that have minimal consequences. Don’t begin by investing your life-savings on a hunch – for obvious reasons. You need to make lots of little intuitive choices at first – possibly making lots of mistakes – so you get good at the process, and begin to understand your mind better. Decide which movie to see, book to read or place to visit based on intuition – then see how correct your feelings are.

7) Intuition is compatible with reason. You just have to learn the strengths and limitations of both. Yes, intuition has its limits. It’s a fuzzy intelligence and it is not always easy to correctly identify and comprehend the feelings and images that emerge from the intuitive mind. This is why you also need to develop a strong analytical capacity to complement intuition. Careful planning and analysis of problems is often necessary. For example, deconstructing the learning process involved in learning a second language can be very helpful in optimising learning. Don’t make the mistake of devaluing the so-called left-brained learning and cognitive processes because you think your intuition is great. God gave us all these capacities so that we can use them. So use them well, and use them wisely.

When you develop profound intuition you will tend to allow it to lead your decision-making, because intuition often grants us insight into the big picture. But you will then also employ reason and analysis to complement the process. Lead from the right, manage from the left, as Stephen Covey used to say.

8) Intuition does not make you omnicient, and it does not grant you a free ride through life. Intuition offers you potentially transformative insight into the nature of things, people, places, times and life itself. But this does not mean you will become some kind of awakened avatar. Most people I know who have advanced intuitive skills are all-too-human, and they have the common strengths and weaknesses found in the general population. Nor does intuition necessarily free you from suffering. Don’t place these expectations upon the intuitive mind, for the promise can never be fulfilled.

9) Intuition can make you delusional. I deliberately use strong language here because the ego tends to like the idea that it is smarter and superior to others. So when you develop strong intuitive abilities your ego will tend to identify with the process and begin to see itself as special; superior to others. In the most problematic cases it leads to the Christ complex – the spiritual ego. And once the spiritual ego has a hold of you, it is very, very difficult to escape its grasp.

Developing some degree of spiritual ego is almost inevitable to some degree, so the key is to facilitate your capacity to witness the mind as it plays this game – and assume responsibility for the drama. Having an ego is just part of being human, so there is no need to feel ashamed or beat yourself up about it. Merely take the ego by the hand and offer firm and loving discipline – a bit like you might guide a child as he or she matures.

10) Don’t expect acclaim and public recognition for being intuitive. In fact, it is far more likely that you will meet strong resistance from others, especially if you try to explain to them how you came to make up your mind using intuition. So don’t even try to explain yourself, unless the other person has a strong understanding of such things. This is particularly true in corporate and academic settings.

You are just going to have to get used to disguising your intuitive decisions and communicating your insights as being driven by reason. What else are you going to do? Tell them you have a good feeling about it? Describe the vision you had during meditation? Communicate that the message came into your head while you were napping?

I don’t think so.

11) Intuitive intelligence expands with expertise. There are some expressions of intuitive intelligence which first require you to develop mastery over a subject matter, and this is particularly true of creative intuitions. Many people claim that Michael Jordan was a very intuitive basketball player, a real natural. Yet without the thousands of hours of practice and court time, such intuitive intelligence could never have flourished within him. The same can be said of the genius of Mozart, Steve Jobs, Einstein or my spiritual teacher Jessica (whom I spoke about in my TEDx talk). In short, hard work and deliberate practice may be necessary in many fields before you can apply your intuition in profound ways.

12) The true value of intuition cannot simply be reduced to material, measurable outcomes. The greatest value of intuition is that it potentially transforms the way you relate to the world, other people and to your own mind. It is a quintessentially spiritual cognition. Yet some people see integrated intelligence merely as a ticket to get rich or achieve power over others. And if they cannot utilise it to achieve these ends, they see it as worthless. A prime value of intuition is that it can help you awaken from the dream of mind, the illusion of separation. Never forget that.

So there you have the twelve keys to developing profound intuition. If you enjoyed the article or found it useful, please like this page and feel free to share the link. And do keep your eyes peeled for my book How To Develop Profound Intuition on my Amazon page.

Marcus

Is looking into the shadow necessary?

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Today’s question for the Five Minute Mystic comes from Penny. This is a very important query. Why should anyone do shadow work, and is it really worth all the effort? In this video I address the pros and cons of delving into the murky depths of the human psyche. Penny’s question is below.

I have divided this into two videos. In this video, below, I address the idea of the “shadow” in its standard form as meaning the human psyche. In the second video here, I move the discussion onto the question of “darkness” as a consciousness field – is evil really a “force”?

Marcus

 

Dear Marcus,

I’m reading your The Mind Reader book right now, about half way through, and loving it but it is also difficult for me because there is a lot of darkness in myself and so the book is rather disturbing. I know that I have a lot of hard work to do and I hope I will have enough courage. It is a good book to read as a companion to your Discover Your Soul Template. You sure have had an amazing life and I thank you for sharing it with us. I’ve also found your videos on youtube and they are so very helpful too. And I like your sense of humor.

Penny

Book Proposal for “The Coming Consciousness Revolution”

Regular readers of this blog might remember my project The Coming Consciousness Revolution. (Note the previous title: The Great Mind Shift). I have previously written three posts on the topic.

In this post I am making public the book proposal. A book proposal is written for book publishers, of course, but this proposal also provides a good overview of the project to date. As stated in the proposal, I intend to interview many people as part of the book project. Not all those listed in the proposal have been contacted yet. So these names might change according to who agrees to be interviewed or not.

You can read the full PDF of the proposal by clicking on the link below, or just read the excerpts I have cut and pasted on this page.

Anthony TGMS propsal small

PS: If you wish to be kept up to date about research and developments regarding The Coming Consciousness Revolution (interviews, videos, the book project, important links to other works etc.) just email me at newsletter@marcustanthony.com, and I will send you updates every month or so.

Regards,

Marcus

GMS cover basics

 

Brief Description

There is a major shift emerging in science and society which will mark a dramatic change in education, business and life itself. Just as the twentieth century was one of disconnection and alienation, the twenty-first century will increasingly be the era of connectedness.

This connectedness will not merely be technological (a trend that is now universally accepted). Another powerful connective trend which is in its infancy is the acceptance of the extended mind – consciousness that is in dynamic relationship with other people, the environment and the cosmos itself. With this dramatic shift in the understanding of mind, the human intellect will be greatly expanded by “integrated intelligence” – the successful employment of the extended mind in solving problems. The way that integrated intelligence will dramatically impact the future is the central theme of The Coming Consciousness Revolution.

This inevitable revolution in cognitive science heralds an era of almost unimaginable opportunity for those informed enough to foresee what is coming.

In The Coming Consciousness Revolution, futurist Marcus T Anthony points the reader in the direction of change, and outlines what it will mean for life, work and society in the twenty-first century.

 

Not just a book…

The Coming Consciousness Revolution is more than merely a book. It is a multi-tiered project which incorporates the following elements:

  • Workshops and public talks. The Coming Consciousness Revolution project is taking these ideas and the practical tools to organisations and public groups around the world. Steaphen Pirie (author and change agent) will work with Marcus T Anthony on the Asian leg of the tour, which begins April 2014 in China. (e.g. see Marcus T Anthony’s 2012 TEDx talk in Hong Kong).
  • The Coming Consciousness Revolution app. This app will assist people in developing their integrated intelligence by allowing them to simply and easily input intuitive prompts, and then providing feedback about how effective their intuitive decision making is. The app is being developed with the help of Alick Lau, PhD, Director of Mind and Matter Ltd.
  • Radio, TV and social media interviews. I consider myself to be a confident and engaging speaker, and will be making full use of multi-media to promote the project.
  • Google hangouts and social media promotions.

 

Overview of the Project

What will happen once the extended mind becomes widely accepted in mainstream science and society?

There is a tendency for discussions about the extended mind, ESP, clairvoyance and so on to become strongly polarised into proponents versus skeptics. While part of The Coming Consciousness Revolution will highlight the key debates, I take the view that such arguments rarely alter the worldview of the debaters, and much energy can be wasted rehashing the same issues over and over again.

The position I take in The Coming Consciousness Revolution is that the evidence from parapsychology and other fields of enquiry is now strong, and that it will only get stronger in the coming years. The data is now compelling enough to begin to ask what this shift means for all of us.

 

The domains

The Coming Consciousness Revolution explores developments and opportunities in many different fields and disciplines – referred to as domains. These domains include biology, physics, consciousness studies/neuroscience, computing, social media, education and learning, the arts (creativity), health and healing, business, and spirituality.

Each domain is given a chapter in Part 3 of the book, and each chapter will include the following:

  • an overview of some of the most important current ideas and/or scientific developments in that domain;
  • informed predictions about where that domain will most likely develop in the coming decades as the great mind shift takes more definite form;
  • suggested opportunities for learning, business and personal growth in that domain;
  • a list of recommended reading for those wishing to explore that domain in more detail;
  • a interview at the end of the chapter with a leading thinker/practitioner within that domain.

 

The Book’s Purpose

The purpose of The Coming Consciousness Revolution is to create an effective bible for progressive thinkers and thought leaders who wish to be at the leading edge of the great mind shift. The book is designed to excite the thinking of the reader and open his/her mind to the wide array of possibilities and opportunities that the great mind shift will create. The cross-disciplinary nature of the book will allow the reader to glean insights from a wide array of fields of knowledge – something that is increasingly important in the modern age.

The book is particularly aimed at people who would like to seize opportunities in any of the domains covered. The Coming Consciousness Revolution is presented as a stimulus to encourage those with imagination and foresight to explore practical opportunities in business, career or life orientation in related areas.

 

Predictions

Prediction is notoriously difficult for futurists. In my own futures work and academic writing I have tended to avoid prediction, instead focusing upon identifying critical insights into human development.  In The Great Mind Shift I break my own general rule.

Predictions can be classified into two forms. The first and least risky are based on trends – readily observable changes that are already occurring. For example, predicting that the internet will become far more pervasive in our lives, and that human intelligence will be enhanced by it is clearly very likely. Futurists – and many laymen – can often see obvious trends even as they are developing.

However a second class of prediction relates to what futurists call “wildcards” – developments which arrive in a hurry and often take everyone by surprise. The 911 event in New York was such an event, and it changed the world dramatically. Another example from global politics and economics – where timeframes can be longer – the “sudden” rise of China over a period of only two or three decades was completely unexpected by many.

These kinds of unforeseen changes can be the most destabilising for business, society and life in general. They often involve a paradigm shift, a new way of relating to the world and knowledge itself. Wildcards can be disastrous for organisations that are not prepared for them. Few foresaw the dotcom bubble bursting just before the turn of the century, but many companies failed completely as a result.

Nonetheless, for every wildcard event there are signs which people fail to acknowledge. There are often trends and data which are ignored by almost everyone. Yet that information is often freely accessible. The reason why so many people and organisations ignore the data is because the information lies beyond the dominant paradigm and suggests a shift that is too far “outside the box” for most laymen and experts to consider feasible.

The main argument of The Comng Consciousness Revolution is that the coming change in the way we see, access and employ consciousness is one such wildcard. The book will make clear that the data and historical evidence are already here, but mainstream thinking in science, education and business is too tunnel-visioned to acknowledge it – yet. Of particular importance is what Dean Radin calls “the psi taboo”, which effectively forbids open discussion of related subject matters.

When the great mind shift arrives the implications will be as far-reaching as is possible to imagine, possibly matching the seismic shifts of the Copernican revolution, Darwin’s natural selection and the scientific enlightenment.

The Coming Consciousness Revolution is not merely about data. It deliberately pushes the boundaries of the conventional. It therefore moves beyond the known to suggest possible and probable futures in each of the domains. This includes developing likely scenarios and visions which the reader can explore as possible opportunities.

 

The style

The Coming Consciousness Revolution is written in reader-friendly language and in a style which will allow laymen to grasp the content and enjoy the possibilities put forward. Some of the chapters on subjects like physics and biology will contain references to recent and complex debates, but they will be reduced to their most essential nature, with references provided for those wishing to explore them in more detail.

This book is written in a different style from my recent book Discover Your Soul Template. The market here is a more “serious” one, and so the style is less flippant and the language less colloquial. Nonetheless, the writer’s voice remains friendly and relaxed. The tone is not quite as formal as my first book Integrated Intelligence (Sense Publishers, 2008). That book, which covered similar ground to The Coming Consciousness Revolution was primarily for the academic market.

One of the great challenges in writing this book will be the introduction of my personal experience with Integrated Intelligence. My intention is not to feign pretense of impartiality in the subject matter, but to be quite open with my own wide experience in living with and teaching this innate human capacity. However the book is not about me (Marcus T Anthony), but about the great mind shift itself; so personal anecdote will be minimised. Insights taken from my life, my personal meditative and contemplative practice will form part of the text, but will not dominate it.

In short, The Coming Consciousness Revolution is written for the popular market of intelligent laymen. It targets those who wish to gain a deeper understanding of frontier areas in science and philosophy, how these will affect their lives within the next few decades, and the opportunities which can be taken advantage of.

PS: If you wish to be kept up to date about research and developments regarding The Coming Consciousness Revolution (interviews, videos, the book project, important links to other works etc.) just email me at newsletter@marcustanthony.com, and I will send you updates every month or so.

Marcus

Gurerilla War, Unfair (Part 3 – Engaged Presence)

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This is the third part of three posts I am writing about this topical issue.

In the first post I described the problem regarding the presence of hard-core skeptics group Guerrilla Skeptics, and their undue control of Wikipedia pages related to spiritual and psi phenomena.

In the second post I outlined three different approaches to the problem, and the merits of each. I also wrote why certain approaches are likely to be counterproductive – and potentially spiritually regressive. I introduced the idea of gentle engagement.

In this final post I will describe the practical application of engaged presence – which can be employed in any kind of debate or discourse, both online and in real world situations. I also suggest how “conflicts” can be of great benefit to anybody on a path of awakening.

 

Engaged presence

Engaged presence is simple. It is a process which involves attending to debates, online discussions and personal differences while remaining present and mindful. You can also use it in public talks, meetings, and media interviews. It enables you to access the analytical and intellectual mind while also retaining the equanimity of mindful presence. The greatest benefit of this approach to intellectual discourse is that it prevents you from getting lost in petty squabbles – the kind that tend to dominate public discourse, especially online.

You can employ engaged presence in any kind of debate or “argument” with someone. Of course, engaged presence does not feel anything like what you might think of as an “argument”. Arguments are confrontational in nature. Engaged presence is light. It is not a matter of life and death, which is how most intellectual confrontations feel – because the mind is so attached to the outcome.

For example, should anyone be foolish enough to take up the challenge of attempting to challenge the Guerrilla Skeptics on Rupert Sheldrake’s Wikipedia page, they could use engaged presence to minimise the level of insanity that might be expected to overcome any normal human being undertaking such a task.

Engaged presence does not require any pronounced altered state of consciousness. It is true that it involves a relaxed state of mindful presence, but this is not much different from, say, having a relaxed chat with a friend in the evening.

In short, the key difference between engaged presence and normal intellectual discourse is that the individual has a greater level of mindfulness – and indeed, playfulness. They maintain an awareness of the mind (or ego) even as they engage the other person.

In practice

This is very, very simple, no? It is unnecessary to complicate this.

1. Bring yourself present

In the minutes or moments before you are about to engage the other person (in a real world situation or via electronic media) bring yourself fully present. Sit or stand quietly. Take note of your breath moving in and out of your chest. Feel yourself fully in your body. Relax as you bring your attention to your breath, releasing any tension you might feel. With any thoughts that come into your mind, simply observe them, and then gently return your attention to your breath. Do this for five breaths, and you should then be present in the moment.

Alternatively, bring your awareness on to something that is physically with you. Anything will do – a cup, a chair, the desk before you. Allow your mind to become fully present with the object. Just gently observe it for thirty seconds. Again, if any thoughts come into your mind, just observe them, and then return your attention to the thing which you are observing.

2. Agenda awareness (optional)

For those who are proficient at working with the shadow or who have previous experience with meditative processes which involve introspection and self-reflection, you can add a few moments of “agenda awareness”. If you are proficient at bringing yourself into mindful presence you will automatically be able to sense any barely conscious or overt agendas you have regarding the people or situation you are about to engage.

The first part of agenda awareness is to take note of any emotions you feel within yourself, both those projected at the people you are engaging, and at yourself. Pay careful consideration of any aggressive feelings you have towards the people you are engaging. Common projections to note are thoughts and feelings such as the following

“You are an idiot! You don’t know anything!”

“I know best. I am smarter than you!”

Take note also of your agendas for power and control over the situation, or in trying ensure a particular outcome.

“I am in control here!”

“I must take control.”

“He must not be allowed to speak!”

“They are going to try to get me! I must strike first!”

Agendas like these are many. Just because they are half-mad doesn’t make them go away!

You can self-dialogue with such agendas if you like. But this takes time, and you may not have time in any given situation – see this summary of specific useful tools). A more efficient way to neutralise agendas is just to confess your agendas to “God”, the universe, or whatever greater intelligence you may perceive (see the fifth tool). If you are not spiritually inclined, just confess them to the chair or the pot plant if you like. The key is to fully admit the agenda. Remember, this is a non-judgmental process. You are not beating yourself up or finding that you are “bad”. In fact just laugh or smile. You are only human!

3. Engage mindfully

As you sit with the other person, or engage with them via image or word on a computer screen, keep mindful presence by regularly focussing upon your breath, body, or something solid within the room. Observe your own judgments, feelings and thoughts mindfully.

If during your engagement you find yourself being dragged into the mind, reacting with anger and judgment, pull back silently from the other. Bring yourself present again by focussing upon a single breath or something within the room. Observe the feelings of anger and judgment within you. Don’t believe in them and don’t make them the other person’s fault. They are your projections. If you do this, your projections will lose their power over you.

Give yourself permission to smile and laugh. Be light.

4. Disengage

As you leave the engagement, bring yourself to mindful attention again. Note any judgments, feelings or agendas that linger. Allow yourself to surrender to the outcome, whatever it may be. Let go.

It is easy to know if you have successfully employed engaged presence. You feel relaxed and possibly joyful. You feel at peace. If you feel angry, resentful or annoyed at those whom you have just engaged, then you have failed to employ the process successfully.

Agendas of mind

Note: Here the term “agenda” refers to subtle intentions of power and control over the other person or situation. It does not refer to any conscious intention you may have in the engagement, e.g. wanting to correct misrepresentations of Rupert Sheldrake on his Wikipedia page.

Having worked on being mindfully present for many years, I have come to observe several common agendas that tend to arise when people are confronting others, and when they are battling for control of ideas. It might pay you to reflect on these. Being able to catch the mind when it develops agendas is very useful if you want to practice engaged presence. As long as you have an agenda, you are not fully present. You are bringing some past hurt to the table, or some intention or motivation about the future. It is not possible to listen deeply if this is the case.

I call the modern, preferred way of fighting others for control of ideas “confrontational binaries”. The following agendas are commonly experienced during such engagements.

1). The mind is very serious. The mind sees the maintenance of its own worldview as a kind of life and death struggle. With engaged presence you relax in the knowledge that beliefs and ideas are ephemeral. Engaged presence is light and playful.

2) Attachment to one’s beliefs and opinions. In engaged presence you acknowledge mental attachments, and gently release them.

3). Identification with ones beliefs and opinions. The mind typically has trouble distinguishing itself from its own thoughts. In engaged presence, the individual is familiar with a deeper level of awareness beyond thought. This means that you are not so identified with the content of thought.

4). There is an incessant need to be right. The mind is often like a dog at a bone, and just won’t let go. In engaged presence you let go and allow the process to unfold (but are still mindful of what you understand – and believe to be true).

5). The mind sees the other as a threat. There is fear and anger. This is not as irrational as you might think, because in confrontational binaries the other person is also engaged in judgment, and the barely conscious agenda is to overpower and destroy you and your opinion. Debate and argument are inherently violent mental processes. In engaged presence you are mindful of this tendency to strike out at the other. In presence you see the other at a deeper level, beyond the opinions and arguments they are presenting.

6) The mind seeks approval from observers and opponents. In states of presence the need for approval diminishes.

7) The mind is attached to the outcome of the discussion. In engaged presence you release the outcome.

8) There is an agenda for power and control over your opponent, or in regard to the purpose of the discussion, how you are perceived etc. In engaged presence you gently acknowledge any need for power and control.

9) Typically, there is an attempt to be seen as clever – intellectually, morally or spiritually superior. This is often part of an implicit power struggle which attempts to place you above your opponent. Naturally, this tends to create fear and anger in the other person, even when the agenda is unconscious. With engaged presence, one releases the need to be seen as smarter or morally superior to the other person. If you are brilliant, good for you. There is no need to turn this into a game of “I am better.”

How is it possible to be mindful of all this in any given situation? It would be very difficult indeed if you had to consciously focus on all of these factors simultaneously. But in practice that is not actually necessary. These perspectives – and the awareness that goes with them – tend to emerge naturally from the presence that you bring to the situation.

However…

Engaged presence doesn’t excuse you from becoming informed about the subject matter you are discussing. Be careful. The ego might attempt to employ engaged presence with an aloof agenda to remain in control and to avoid being challenged. Nor is the purpose of engaged presence to impress people about how Buddha-like you are. That would be an agenda – and more approval seeking.

Employing engage presence doesn’t mean you will win the debate or argument. Sorry, but you might lose the debate! Observers might decide that your opponent’s arguments or opinions are stronger. People might retain their prejudices and biases.

Nor does gentle engagement guarantee systemic change – at least not in the short run. In the situation with Guerrilla Skeptics, Craig Weiler has blogged about his frustration at trying to fairly edit Rupert Sheldrake’s Wikipedia page when the editors appear to be heavily favouring skeptical input. If a person were to employ engaged presence in trying to balance that discussion, it would not change the Wikipedia system in the short term. However it would grant the person a greater degree of equanimity as he went about his work. It would also allow him to relax and be mindful of his own agendas, and what lies behind them (there is often trauma and anger behind our personal agendas).

Of course in the long run our imaginary Wikipedia editor might slowly influence the discourse on that site, and he would be able to keep his wits about him as he did so.

Nor does engaged presence guarantee that others will not conspire in a power game against you (which sometimes happens online, in the media or in public meetings and interviews). But it does pull your ego out of the game. This tends to disengage the other person’s ego, helping them to relax. They will feel less threatened by you, and logically they will feel less need to eliminate you from further discussions, or exclude you from any power within the given situation.

But again, there is no guarantee. Just be careful that your mind does not set up the agenda that it is owed something merely because it has employed a “superior” means of dialogue – seeking recognition or a God-guaranteed victory. Engaged presence does not guarantee outcomes. It merely permits a specific kind of engagement.

Mastery of mind

Of course, in order to access gentle engagement simply and easily it is best that you understand and are familiar with the experience of presence. If you do not experience presence regularly in your normal life, it is unlikely that you will be able to master engaged presence in a debate. As Leonard Jacobson has so often said, the awakening process requires not just the ability to bring oneself into presence. It also requires mastery of mind (which enables you to stay present at will). And being a master of mind means that you understand yourself well enough to be able to realise how your mind attempts to bring you out of presence and into the world of drama and projection.

There is one final benefit to employing engaged presence which I will share with you. In the state of alert presence you will increasingly notice subtle things about the people you are engaging with. Because you are no longer judging the other person or trying to control them, you will be able to sense the agendas of their minds, including their striving for power and control over you, their attachment to the need to be right, their wanting to be seen as clever and so on. If you are very relaxed, you may also see auras and energy structures about the person, and you might even see glimpses of their soul story. I often sense such things when I am in relaxed presence with others.

The wise man or woman will not use these intuitive insights to affirm an agenda – such as gaining power over the other. In fact, if you are deeply present, compassion and forgiveness arise spontaneously – even for your “opponent”.

I suggest you experiment with engaged presence. You don’t have to be in a formal debate to use it, you can just use it during normal discourse with someone you know or love.

Go ahead. You might be surprised at what you learn.

Blessings,

Marcus

Guerrilla War, Unfair (Part 2)

three-paths

This is the second part of a three posts I am writing about this topical issue.

  • In the first post I described the problem regarding the presence of hard-core skeptics, and their undue control of Wikipedia pages related to spiritual and psi phenomena.
  • In this second post I will outline three different approaches to the problem, and the merits of each. I will also write why certain approaches are likely to be counterproductive – and potentially spiritually regressive.
  • In the final post I will provide some more practical tools and strategies, and suggest how this entire situation can be of great benefit to anybody on a path of awakening.

Before I get down to business and make some suggestions about how to approach the problem of Guerrilla Skeptics on Wikipedia, allow me to clarify a personal position which is central to my perspective.

In my own life I have gone through phases of personal development. At first I was a skeptic, refusing to take anything seriously that dint have hard science behind it. But over time that attitude slowly softened. In my mid-twenties I explored the visionary realms through dreams and meditation. Several years later, when I finally admitted to myself that I had spiritual and psychological which issues I needed to address, I worked on self-healing and the emotional body. This involved a great deal of inner child work. Finally, I came to appreciate the importance of mindful presence.

One thing I learned in recent years is that a belief in the spiritual or psychic realms keeps one locked in “the mind”. Simply adopting a spiritual worldview – as opposed to, say, a scientific materialist worldview – is not enough to transcend the dichotomies that have created the split in the modern mind (reason vs intuition).

Developing intuitive, visionary or psychic cognition is not particularly beneficial in itself. It is true that these abilities will let you know that the modern world and science has got the big picture very wrong. And they can be helpful in decision making, especially regarding the big life choices. But they won’t free you from the grip of mind (ego, if you prefer). All visionary experiences and even the most profound peak experiences quickly pass, leading one back into the mind’s world of doubt, fear and separation. Unless a person becomes fundamentally established in presence, the mind will always cut back in.

This brings me to my specific point about what to do about Guerrilla Skeptics. Here I am going to simplify things and present just three distinct possible approaches, and the benefits and drawbacks of each. The points I make here are going to be general. I will keep more specific suggestions for my next post.

Fight the bastards

This is – either explicitly or implicitly – the stance that many advocates on either side of the “psi wars” adopt. The idea is to take up effective arms, man the computers, and start hacking your opponent. The benefit seems to be that you can get out there and really get your teeth into your opponent. There is the sense that you can make a genuine contribution, and stand up for the truth. It is, in theory, a noble path. But there is a problem.

The danger with this approach is that it tends to ensnare the individual the mind, in a battle for control and power. In other words, it can lock you in the little world of the ego, and all its suffering.

Pro-psi folks on a wisdom path who start fighting skeptics and “unbelievers” may pay the price of sacrificing their own spiritual awakening. I maintain that you cannot fully awaken into presence while you are fighting anyone or anything, or rejecting the world in any way. Those who fight the darkness typically become ensnared in it.

I saw a classic example of this recently on Facebook, where an influential psi-psi proponent let loose with a torrent of rage that was so obscenity-laden I thought I was reading a script from a porn movie. He must have used the word “fuck” a dozen times in one short post. It was fuck him, fuck that, fuck them all. His rage against the other was obvious and extreme.

Here I use an extreme example, but if many pro psi-proponents are perfectly honest, they will admit that at times their own minds degenerate into similar waves of rage and hatred – against critics. In other words, they are still playing the same game as the fundamentalists and skeptics – “Destroy the other guy, because he is deluded and evil!”

Are you really willing to sacrifice your own awakening, your own peace of mind, just to satisfy your mind’s need to be seen to be right? Personally, I don’t think it is worth it.

Let them be. It’s all in divine perfection

It is not uncommon for mystics and spiritually-inclined people to prefer to avoid confrontation with people, society and ideas. A common position is that the greatest gift we can offer the world is our own awakening (I agree with this last point). Because all minds are connected, by merely awakening from the dream of mind, you already help shift the world in a very powerful way. Indeed, by fighting the world, you may lose your own awakened state, and thus delay the conscious evolution of our species, if only by a little. Perhaps then, the greatest contribution you can make, looking at the big picture, is not to fight people like the Guerrilla Skeptics (they are not going to listen to anything which challenges their position anyway), but to enlighten your own mind.

There are other rational reasons for just letting mainstream science, society and even the skeptics coast along as they are, or at least with minimal resistance. It is my conviction that eventually the evidence and arguments for the reality of many so-called “paranormal” cognitive abilities will win out. They will win out because there a profound truths which underpin the arguments and the evidence will only get stronger. History also tends to go in cycles, and when waves of development become unbalanced – as with the Deckard Confusion and the mechanistic paradigm – eventually people tire of the extremes and things begin to rebalance. This is already clearly happening in regard to the public acceptance of psi phenomena, as we saw with the huge backlash against TED organisation when they (effectively) censored talks by Sheldrake and Graham Hancock. So it is logical to assume that this trend will continue.

But then again, how long will that take?

Engaged presence

What if there are more specific issues at stake, such as the professional credibility of hard-working and brilliant people like Rupert Sheldrake and Dean Radin? Should Wikipedia just be permitted to be overrun with misguided and power-crazed skeptics who do not understand many of the discourses they seek to control?

In at least some cases, it is both desirable and necessary to take concerted action. My position is that the key is to engage, but gently, and from a position of genuine power. And the kind of power I am referring to here is something that comes from within. This mirrors my preferred way of dealing with unconsciousness in others, and the various social, political and institutional problems which emerge from it.

It is possible to confront much ignorance and aggression with a powerful yet non-confrontational approach which I call engaged presence. This is essentially the same means that underpinned the non-violent resistance of Gandhi and MLK. Here you engage those who are committed to disempowerment, destruction or colonisation, but from a default position of peace – what I call profound presence. But before I describe this, let me make an important point.

A multi-layered perspective

I like futurist Sohail Inayatullah’s approach to dealing with change and the creation of possible futures. Inayatullah acknowledges that problems and discourses are multi-layered.

First there is “the litany” – the readily observable or measurable aspects of the problem. With Guerilla Skeptics on Wikipedia, this would be arguments over the data.

Then there is “the system” in which the problem is embedded. Referring to debates about psi phenomena, we might point out that academic journals and universities tend to have rigid systems and political structures which make it difficult to challenge the status quo.

Thirdly, we have “the paradigmatic level” – implicit and often invisible knowledge structures. We might note that the mechanistic paradigm is implicitly accepted are being “real” by the Guerilla Skeptics, including its founding presuppositions (e.g. that matter is the foundation of the cosmos, rather than say, intelligence or consciousness).

Finally we have “the myths and metaphors”, which are again embedded within the discourse and often unacknowledged. If you read many science magazines, they often use the term “hard-wired” when describing genetic encoding in the brain. This tends to reinforce the idea that the mind/brain is a computer – without actually acknowledging that this might be a self-limiting metaphor which obfuscates important dimensions of the subject matter.

I personally like to add a fifth level to Inayatullah’s model, that of “consciousness”. This is where much of my writing is focussed. The fifth level is where you work on your own fundamental nature, the way you employ your mind. Engaged presence is grounded at this level. Mindfulness requires self-awareness, including of the way that the mind seeks power and control over the world and information. The mind’s goal is to ensure that its worldview is not threatened.

The most important aspect of Inayatullah’s way of examining problems at depth is that both analysis and action can occur at all levels. Indeed, in order for the most powerful insights into a problem to occur, all levels need to be addressed. Long-lasting and powerful change occurs when we address an issue deeply, not just at the superficial or surface level.

In this sense, typical challenges to Guerrilla Skeptics on Wikipedia often involve just two levels. They involve debating the data, and also working at the systems level – as Wikipedia is part of the system. Such an approach can be useful, but it remains limited if the deeper levels of the problem are not accessed.

Engaged presence is profound because it not only incorporates the deepest levels of a problem or discourse – it is grounded in the deepest level – consciousness.

Beginning with presence – not power and control

There is an expression of consciousness which exists beyond mental construct. It is silent and peaceful, and requires no attachment to beliefs, ideas or ideologies. Those people who develop the capacity to access this embodied presence rarely feel the need to overpower or control others at the mental level. They can begin any engagement from a position of silent power, because they do not need anything from others, and there is little or no desire to wrestle for control of information or interpretation.

Engaged presence is not possible while you remain deeply attached to your beliefs, regardless of how truthful you might think they are. If you have a spiritual worldview and an aggressive skeptic attacks your idea or work, it is perfectly normal to feel afraid – and then angry. My experience leads me to conclude that this is a physiological process, and it is hard to avoid. I personally find such a reaction to be automatic when anything that I have a belief about is threatened by an aggressive other.

Such reactions tend to be strong because the opponent is aiming at nothing less than destruction of your “mind” – your thoughts and beliefs. Likewise, when you attack your opponent, she will typically feel frightened and angered. The result is that both of you take offensive mental positions, and the whole thing just descends into “drama”.

If you begin with an agenda to overpower an “opponent”, then you are engaging in an act of cognitive violence.

With engaged presence you begin with stillness. If you do not begin with this – if you are not fundamentally grounded in presence – you will simply be fooling yourself – faking engaged presence while harbouring an agenda to annihilate the other. And destruction of the opposition is the covert agenda behind all judgment.

With engaged presence you begin by accepting that the person you are engaging is entitled to their own belief structures.

You also accept that you have the right to maintain and express your understandings.Engaged presence also assumes that you have the right to create preferred actions and preferred futures that you see as being more truthful or of greater wisdom than other possible intellectual stances and life paths.

Perhaps I should state that engaged presence does not guarantee victory in a debate or conflict. You may still “lose”. You might even find out that you did not have the complete story, that you have been partially or wholly misguided. But because you begin with peace, this is not taken personally.

Imagine that! Imagine that you could begin a debate or conversation topic with someone who holds diametrically opposed views to you – while feeling no threat from them – nothing but complete acceptance. Imagine that you could feel completely at peace, empowered and untouchable even when discussing the most evocative of topics! Imagine that you could listen to the other guy instead of fighting him, instead of hating him!

That would be engaged presence.

But how is that possible, at a practical level?

That is the topic of my next post.

Marcus

Is There a One True Spiritual Path?

mountain

 How many paths up there?

 

The One Right Path?

Most human beings in developed countries and regions of the planet are presented with an opportunity to create a life.

Their life.

Once we are old enough to start asking questions and develop a capacity for critical thinking, there then arises the most fundamental of all queries.

“What path shall I follow?”

Sometimes this might be expressed as: “Whose path shall I follow?”

In countries with high levels of personal freedom, there are innumerable possible journeys and teachings that one might choose to undertake – or perhaps emulate. As we mature and are exposed to books, cinema and other media, most of us discover one or a few people whom we greatly admire or respect. We may think of these people as having lived a noble, powerful or model life.

In the current age there is no shortage of “teachers” professing expertise in the living of the ideal life. Some might be classified as spiritual teachers, others as self-help gurus. Other luminaries might simply have a notable philosophy which they have shared with the world, and their lives and ideas potentially offer wisdom.

We then have people who are set up as role models by our leaders; via education, history books and official media. Who is considered attractive or admirable varies from country to country according to the dominant worldview, values and religious structures. Conservatives in China consider Mao Ze Dong to be the greatest man in history. Yet many people in western countries revile him as a mass-murdering tyrant. In Melbourne where I live, many folks adore AFL footballer Gary Ablett, and see him as an ideal role model. My Chinese wife thinks all Australian footballers are buffoons.

 

Freedom to choose

Some people believe that there is no such thing as free will. If you are one of these people then obviously this discussion is not for you.

My experience has led me to conclude that while a great deal of life and personal expression is either conditioned or out of our control, the essential and most important choices remain open to us (or at least potentially open, if we can bring awareness to those choices). Here I wish to focus on two related queries.

  • Which religious/spiritual/philosophical path shall I follow? (I include scientific materialism as a philosophical choice).
  • What teachers or role models are worth emulating?

Now allow me to emphasise my main point here.

I believe that it is unwise to blindly follow the teaching of another person or philosophy, no matter how wonderful or successful it may seem. The essential reason is that each of us is a little different from the teachers we admire (sometimes very different). This is an obvious point, but it is one that many of us fail to fully acknowledge. It is important that we tailor ourselves a life process or path that is a fit for our own souls.

The idea is not difficult to understand. But there are some distinctions that each of us needs to keep in mind.

 

Which path?

When we are just starting out in life it is perfectly understandable that we choose a particular teaching or teacher, and try to model ourselves upon them.

When I was in my 20s I tried to be like mystic Stuart Wilde. But I discovered that being a visionary was a bit trippy. A bit later on I tried to be like Anthony Robbins. Later I realised that my teeth just weren’t big enough.

In my thirties I applied myself diligently in following the way of a master of presence – Leonard Jacobson. Leonard is a wonderful spiritual teacher. But I am not Leonard, and he is not me.

I’m a bit slow on the uptake sometimes, which probably explains why it took me a few years to work out something incredibly simple in relation to my attempts to apply Leonard’s teachings.

leonardphoto4

Leonard Jacobson

 

Leonard and the river

Leonard’s story is remarkable. In the 1980s he had several spontaneous spiritual awakenings which involved transcendent states of consciousness. There was little or no suffering in this for Leonard. He wasn’t trying to achieve anything spiritual, nor escape anything. In 1981 at a retreat near the Bellingen River in northern New South Wales, he threw himself into the flood-swollen river. When he emerged he discovered that he was in a profound state of non-ordinary consciousness. Everything seemed to contain love and beauty. He was filled with a great sense of gratitude for existence itself.

While such exalted states came and went, Leonard’s experience of divine presence remains to this day.

My own journey has been quite different from Leonard’s. My family background was quite dark, and as a child and young man I was exposed to alcoholism, drug abuse and the literal insanity of several close relatives.

When each of us is born into this world our minds become instantly imbedded in a pool of consciousness – that of our family and caregivers. I was therefore born into a vortex of great darkness.

I left Australia at the age of thirty – in part – to escape that darkness. Not long after I arrived in New Zealand I undertook some intense spiritual training, and in the process became highly clairvoyant. I saw intuitively that my mind was still gravely affected by the mental projections of my relatives. It was truly frightening to see the depth of that darkness, and to have to acknowledge how damaged I’d become as a result of it. The heaviness of dark energy was such that it was often exhausting just to be.

It was the realisation of all this – and the suffering implicit in being trapped in such darkness – that spurred me towards my particular spiritual journey.

As you can see, this is quite a different introduction to “spirituality” than that of Leonard Jacobson. Do not get me wrong. I have come to accept the truth of what Leonard teaches, and I apply much of that to my daily life. Yet there were some things he could not teach me – things that he does not understand (as far as I can tell), because his journey did not traverse the darkness that mine did.

So it was that about twelve years ago I asked Leonard what the best way is to deal with the destructive consciousness fields that were plaguing me. I will not go into details here, but the answer he gave me suggested that he did not understand what I was experiencing; because he had not experienced such things in his own lifetime (at least not at the same depth).

I applied Leonard’s advice. Yet it did not free me from those mental projections. In fact, I eventually learned that I had to do something that no other spiritual teacher I ever met advised me.

I had to learn to fight. To fight the darkness.

Perhaps “fight” is not quite the right word. A better term might be to “stand in my power.” But the intensity of the projections that I experienced had been such that the solution required the embodiment of a warrior energy. There was no way around this, because at a soul level I had come to believe that I was worthless, unlovable and intrinsically “bad”. My soul story was that of “The Sacrifice” – the one who is taunted, haunted and enchained by those of dark intent.

Consciousness fields work like attractor fields in physics. At an energetic level I had become what I believed. I needed to change the story, change the beliefs, and embody a more empowered male energy.

Unfortunately – to continue the physics analogies – systems tend to remain at rest unless they are acted upon. Those with whom I was playing out a karmic story of the victim did not wish to relinquish their power over me. That was where the warrior energy needed to come in. I literally had to scream it out of my base chakra.

To this day I have to keep standing up for myself. Old stories – like old habits – die hard.

Often I have asked God why my mind came to be embedded in such darkness. The pattern appears to transcend a single lifetime. But I have never gotten a definitive answer. It seems to be part of my soul’s journey, something unconsciously “chosen” when I came to believe that I was “bad and worthless”.

My journey is different from Leonard’s and many other peoples.

Your journey is probably quite different from mine.

In the end I realised that I was unique, and that I had to draw from a variety of sources to learn how to deal with the specific soul issues and spiritual challenges I faced.

I also discovered that what works in one phase of life does not always work so well in another phase. I had to learn to modify processes and approaches, and emphasise them to different degrees during different periods of my life.

 

So..;

I suggest that you stop trying to be someone else – whether the person be a contemporary role model of yours, or a teacher who has passed on (Jesus, the Buddha, gandhi etc.). After all, how many of us has had exactly the same soul journey as Jesus? How many can endure the outrageous suffering of Gandhi? How many can afford enough toothpaste to be Anthony Robbins?

The key then is to observe yourself as you travel through life. By all means apply the teachings which you feel are suitable for you. There are many fine and beautiful teachings out there, and many great teachers.

And follow through with the process. Some processes require many years of application, and attitudes and skills often require a lifetime commitment.

You might apply different processes and tools than your friends. And that is perfectly understandable. Remember, your life experience, soul needs and soul story are unique.

Nor should you insist that what works for you will work for others. By all means share your wisdom and experience. But do not try to impose “the one true path” upon anyone else. That is an ego game of power and control.

Most of all, be gentle and forgiving of yourself. Have fun along the way. Be committed, but don’t take it all too seriously. As Anita Moorjani is so fond of saying, you are a magnificent human being who is totally worthy of divine love.

You are not here to be perfect. You are here to be human. You are here to be yourself. And there is nobody else that is quite like you.

So live that, and love it. Joyfully.

 

Marcus

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Live Your Soul Purpose Workshop, August 18

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For those of you who are in the Melbourne area, I am running the following workshop very soon at the Enkindle Wellness Centre, in Gisborne. The first workshop in North Melbourne was a great success, and we already have a list of people who have signed up for the second.

Here are the details for the workshop.

All the best,

Marcus

 

Live Your Soul Purpose

A workshop with Marcus T Anthony, PhD

 

Each of us carries within us a soul template which has encoded upon it all the information and wisdom you need to live your life to your highest purpose. Based on Marcus’ book Discover Your Soul Template, this practical and hands-on workshop has the specific purpose of providing you with all the tools and understandings you need to find and live your calling.

 

In Live Your Soul Purpose you may discover:

  • What your soul calling is, and how to begin to turn it into a worldly reality.
  • How to develop profound intuition, unbounded by space and time.
  • The essential Soul Issues which you are here to address.
  • How to use the power of presence to align each moment and day with your highest good.
  • How to release the me-centred mindset which lies at the heart of so much human suffering.
  • How to develop the right relationship with ego.
  • How to live, love, work and play in the world of time with joy and spontaneity, and without getting lost in the ego.

 

Time: Sunday August 18th 2013, 12.00 midday till 5.00 pm.

Location: Enkindle Wellness, 55 Heather Rd, Gisborne (north-west of Melbourne).

Cost: AUS$90 per person (early bird AUS$80, by July 6th, concession available). Includes a free copy of Discover Your Soul Template, valued at $25 in bookstores. For more information go to www.enkindlecommunity.com.au/workshops and click on the link. You can bring a second person along for $49, and every person after that for only $33. (Of course each person can share that total equally e.g. three people = $172 /3)

Contact: email: marcus@marcustanthony.com, mobile: 0403 526 001.

Note, if you prefer, you can also pay directly through my bank account:

Acct name: Marcus Anthony

Acct No: 14-361-8385

BSB: 083-785

Swift code: NAT AAU 3303M

Bank Address:

National Australia Bank, Greensborough, VIC, Australia.

Level 1, 49-51 Main Street, Greensborough, VIC, 3088, Australia

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Dreams that come true: Dreaming of Stuart Wilde’s death

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recently on their blog synchrosecrets.com, Rob and Trish Macgregor wrote a post which featured a quote on synchronicity by David R Hawkins, the mystic and author of the influential book Power vs Force. I have written about Hawkins quite a bit over the years, as I feel that much of what he writes has a very high level of truth. That post by the Macgregors inspired me to go to YouTube and watch some of Hawkin’s videoed lectures. Unfortunately I was saddened to see one entitled “David R Hawkins’ last lecture”. I then found out that he had died in September 2012.    

I then recalled that I had had a vivid dream of Hawkins’ dying some time ago. I still recall the dream. In it I saw Hawkin’s face, and it was clear that he had passed away. The other thing was that his overall consciousness field appeared to be “empty”. This is hard to explain, but it was as if he was hollow. My sense is that this was because he was in a kind of non-dual state which he had often described himself as feeling like nothingness (BTW, this is not the highest state of consciousness, according to Hawkins).     

I have a lot of precognitive dreams, but I only write down my dreams every now and again these days – when I feel they are profound or perhaps precognitive. When I heard that Hawkins had died, I recalled the dream and that I’d written it down somewhere. So I went looking for it. I was particularly interested to find the exact date. 

Annoyingly, I couldn’t find it anywhere in my journals or on my computer. Then I recalled that I occasionally write down dreams on the notepad on my mobile phone. I try not to have my phone anywhere near my bed when I am sleeping these days, but I have sometimes kept it there deliberately for this very purpose.         

Alas, it was to no avail. The Hawkins’ dream was nowhere to be found on my mobile either (I know I put it somewhere!!!). But what I did find on my mobile notepad was a whole heap of dreams that I had recorded and mostly forgotten about. Some of them were quite fascinating.

But one really caught my attention. Indeed it was even more prophetic than the Hawkins’ dream.

Perhaps the most amazing thing about this dream is that it occurred only six weeks ago. It is dated April 22, 2013. And I had absolutely forgotten about it!      

This is not that unusual (though it’s true I do remember a lot of dreams, even when I don’t record them).  

When I awake and write a dream down, I am often barely conscious, and in a very, very drowsy state. I fall back to sleep immediately, as soon as I record the dream. I am a very heavy sleeper.           

So what was so special about this dream? Well, take a look at it. This is the dream as I recorded it in its entirety. I emailed this to myself directly from my mobile note pad, and I have cut and pasted it here.          


I am looking in from a railway station at a pub across the road. It says “Stuart Wilde pub” on the sign. Then I look closer and see that it says: “Stu dead”. I feel great sadness.        

Then I hear someone say: “Is it true?”            

A little boy’s voice returns: “Yes. He had a heart attack.”      

I keep hearing the song “She’s out of my life.” (Michael Jackson) It’s very sad.     

Then I hear another voice. It is Stuart Wilde saying: “I’d like to thank her.”           

Next I am hearing words from the Cold Chisel song “Flame Trees”:           

 “There’s no change. There’s no pace. Everything within its place. Just makes it harder to believe that she won’t be around”.   

There is a sense of sadness and emptiness, like just after someone dies or leaves.

 

As many of you will know, Stuart Wilde died of a heart attack on May 1st, just over a week after I had that dream, while traveling through Ireland. I found out about Stuart’s death two weeks after that. I was very sad to hear about it. He had been very influential in my own spiritual journey.  I was moved to write this blog postabout his life and its significance.

Incredibly, when I came to write that post I had forgotten all about the dream which I’d recorded just a week or so before he died. I did have a vague recollection of dreaming about it, but it was very hazy, and I didn’t want to mention it on the article.    

Everything in the dream is very easy to understand, with perhaps the one vague part being Stuart’s cryptic words: “I’d like to thank her.” It felt as if he was literally grateful to a female who was close to him. My sense is that he was thanking his mother.  

stuart_wilde

Over the years I have had many premonitions. Most relate to my personal life. Some are about world events or public figures. Some are profound.           

There is one dream in my dream diary where I write about finding myself walking through Chengdu airport in Sichuan, China. Suddenly there are sirens going off everywhere. There is panic and it is clear there is a major emergency of some kind. Frustratingly, I didn’t date the dream, but it was probably just before the Sichuan earthquake which killed tens of thousands of people. Chengdu is the capital city of Sichuan.         

However some precognitive dreams are so trivial that I have to ask, “Why would my mind bother?” One morning while I was working in China I awoke seeing two faces in my mind’s eye. They said: “Sorry we can’t make it.” The faces were of two university students who had invited me to lunch.          

I turned up at the restaurant on time. They didn’t come. I wasn’t surprised.
Perhaps being students they couldn’t afford the phone call. So they sent the message telepathically.

Time, space and consciousness do not operate according to the “laws” set out in university text books. Our mainstream science is hopelessly out of date with these things.
The weight of evidence has been gnawing away at the fragile rigging of the good ship academia for many decades, but our institutions are too rigid to bend with the cosmic winds.

So it has come to pass that these same institutions are now perceived as regressive and deluded by more and more of the general public; and also by many within the dusty halls of academia and science.        

We saw this very clearly recently when TED pulled down two talks by Rupert Sheldrake and Graham Hancock. The backlash was furious. Thousands crowded the blogosphere to vent their outrage.    

Those doing the more formal criticising, like Craig Weiler, Dean Radin, Sebastian Penraeth and even my occasionally humble self, remain “fringe dwellers” – as Stuart Wilde liked to call those on the periphery of the mainstream.    

We are still not the majority. But that is changing. And relatively fast.


That’s why I have started
The Great Mind Shiftproject. It’s a means of helping ease the transition whereby the spiritual aspects of human consciousness will become fully integrated into our lives, society, education and science. The benefits for you, I and our children will be enormous.  

If you’d like to keep abreast of developments, keep an eye on this blog, or sign up for my monthly newsletter (send email to newsletter@marcustanthony.com).

Meanwhile, keep an eye on your dreams. They just might tell you something important.

Marcus

 

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Why I rejected the chance for a six-figure income

Why I rejected the chance for a six-figure income: Diary of a 21st Century Mystic #14

 

Many of you reading this will be aware that I write a lot about both mindfulness and how to develop spiritual intuition – what I call Integrated Intelligence. In fact this is the main subject of my most successful book, Discover Your Soul Template. But sometimes even I struggle to apply my own understandings successfully in my life. Some decisions we have to make are of such importance that the mind (“ego”, if you prefer) can play havoc with the decision-making process. This is precisely what happened to me this past week or so, when I had to make one of the toughest choices I can ever recall making.

It was completely unexpected. About seven days ago, and (not quite entirely) out of the blue, I received an email from the EDB, Hong Kong’s education department. The email informed me that I had been successful in gaining a job interview as a regional coordinator in the Hong Kong NET scheme. The NET scheme is a heavily-funded programme whereby the HK government sponsors about a thousand Native English Teachers to teach in Hong Kong’s public education system. Being a NET is possibly the most highly-sought-after ESL job in the world. It carries a very high salary for experienced teachers at very low tax rates. I worked as a NET for eight years in Hong Kong before returning to live in Australia in August 2012.

Of course I did apply for the job several weeks ago, so that’s why I wrote that it was not entirely a surprise. But I threw the application in as an afterthought, in a moment of what Thoreau might call “quiet desperation”. For things have not been entirely rosy since I returned to Australia. I have been lucky enough to secure some work at Swinburne University as a sessional lecturer in their Masters of Strategic Foresight unit. But that is very irregular work and not enough to pay the bills. And most of the jobs I see here in Australia are not particularly attractive to me. I don’t want to go back into secondary education. Being a teacher in a public school in Australia can be an unpleasant experience. You may just as well paint a great target sign on a man’s back and send him out onto an army artillery firing range. Kids these days…

But there is more to this dilemma than finances. The reason I returned to Australia last year is because I got some very clear spiritual guidance to do so. I awoke one dark night in Hong Kong and suddenly a large, dark map of Australia appeared before my mind’s eye. There were red lights around Melbourne, which I knew represented places I could potentially go. Then a song started playing in my inner ear, an old 80s classic by LipsInc – “Funky Town:

Gotta make a move to a town that’s right for me

Gotta keep me moving keep me grooving with some energy

I knew Hong Kong was no longer “right for me”. So I moved to Melbourne. That’s where I am now. It’s just that it hasn’t been easy.

Such is life.

The recent interview offer really threw me. I was genuinely torn as to whether I should go to Hong Kong for the interview or not. After all, a NET regional coordinator is a senior position in the system, a job with high salary and high status. It represented a promotion opportunity. And to boot, an end to my immediate financial issues.

There was another problem. I would have to pay for the trip myself, and that would set me back about $1500; no small sum, given that my savings are getting eaten away with every day I go without a decent income stream.

I decided to ask the EDB whether I could have a video interview. Many organisations do this these days when hiring people from overseas. I wrote an email to the EDB representative who had initially invited me for the interview, explaining that it would be very difficult for me to attend the interview. They had only given me only one week’s notice, so I tried to use this as leverage. This is the response my email got in its entirety.

Dear Marcus,

Sorry that the interview cannot be conducted online.

Regards,
W

Ah, yes, that remarkable Hong Kong bureaucratic hospitality displayed at its greatest! I was suddenly reminded of why I had left Hong Kong in the first place. Working life in Hong Kong can be a truly dehumanising experience. Hong Kong is a like a giant meat grinder, where employees tend to get squeezed by whomever is above them on the pecking order.

When I make decisions of any kind – but especially for big decisions – I rely heavily upon my intuition. That’s why I used two kinds of intuitive tools to make my final choice about this interview offer. The first is what I call Meditative States, and the second is The Feeling Sense (I outline these tools and how to use them in Discover Your Soul Template). So that evening I sat down in my bedroom and allowed myself to relax deeply. My mind became silent, and all thought and emotionality dissipated (any strong emotions – e.g. fear, worry, anger, excitement, lust – distort genuine intuition). I made a short prayer to Spirit, asking that I be shown the truth. Then I connected with the energy around my heart, and deliberately projected that energy outwards and towards my possible new job in Hong Kong. As I did so, the entire feeling around my heart became essentially negative – dull and listless, with a slight sense of repression, of being trapped. It just felt wrong. The feeling was definite, so I opened my eyes and brought myself back to full presence in my room. I gave thanks to Spirit.

“My strong sense is that I should not go to Hong Kong. So my decision is that I will not go. If this is wrong, please guide me in my dreams tonight.”

That night I slept. No message or vision came. When I awoke in the morning, I stirred and turned my attention once again to the decision at hand. First thing in the morning is the perfect time to ask questions to the subconscious, and to Spirit, for the mind is already quiet. Staying relaxed, I repeated the process from the night before. The result was the same. The energy was not right.

I would not go.

Early that morning I wrote an email to my contact at the EDB. I wanted to keep the channels open and relations friendly. Further, I felt I owed them a decent explanation. This is what I wrote, responding to the previous day’s email.

Dear W…,

That’s very bad news for me (about there being no video interviews). I do realise that the EDB will have standard protocols on this matter, so I understand.

If possible, I would like to telephone in person to make a personal apology in regard to this, for I feel that emails are just a little too impersonal. Even though I am not able to attend the interview on Friday, I would like to leave things on good terms, given that I may like to apply again in the future. In this instance, the one week I had to get on the plane just proved to be too difficult.

So would you be kind enough to allow me to phone either you or the most relevant person in this regard?

Kind regards,

Marcus

 

To date I have received no response to this email.

I made the right choice. The world of Hong Kong administrative bureaucracy is not for me. Melbourne may not quite be a “funky town” for me right now, but here I shall stay… until the energy moves me on. That’s all part of the test. When Spirit moves us in one direction, it does not guarantee instant gratification, nor effortless bliss. All things take time, and courage and perseverance are required; especially when we cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Who knows what will happen next? I sure don’t. If I did, there would be no requirement for the trust that lies of the heart of spiritual awakening. So thank you Spirit, for not telling me anything more than what I need to know right now.

Marcus

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