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Journey 27 - Spirituality Without Religion

Journey 27 - Spirituality Without Religion



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Journey 27 - SPIRITUALITY WITHOUT RELIGION: Yes, you can be spiritual without subscribing to any particular religion. Here's how.
Journey 27 - SPIRITUALITY WITHOUT RELIGION: Yes, you can be spiritual without subscribing to any particular religion. Here's how.

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Published by: Christopher C. Humphrey, Ph. D. on Dec 01, 2006
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Journey 27 - SPIRITUALITY WITHOUT RELIGION"The foretelling time. The pages from the rear are in the fore. Sun-worshippers have taken their  place. The ray of love is seldom perceived and often misunderstood as having flesh. The daybreak of the new morn is founded on the proper perception of the ray of love. Babes know it not- -neither man nor woman. The mystic alone knows the reality of this ray." THE WORD OF ONE, "Doer."In Aristotle's collected writings, (class notes written down by his students), they couldn't think of agood name for that part of the book which came after physics. So they just named it "after physics"or "beyond physics" which translates as "metaphysics." Over the centuries, the meaning of the term "metaphysics" has wandered. At times, it seemed partof theology. At times, it was ontology. In the early twentieth Century, the logical positivistsdeclared the term void of any meaning at all. Quite right. So I feel free to define it anew. I define itas the study and practice of spirituality. The seekers of today (including me) say they are notreligious but they do seek spirituality or metaphysics (two terms that I have made identical). The terrorists of 9/11 who destroyed the Twin Trade Towers in the name of Allah have discreditedreligion. If there were an Allah, he would strike these blasphemers dead. While we don't knowmuch about the "between" (between lives), we can be pretty sure it won't be paradise for theseevildoers, not now, and not ever. At the very least, they will have to relive the terror and sufferingof each of their victims, all 3000 of them.Spirituality can mean reading the spiritual classics of earlier times. I must warn you that none of these books can be trusted. Huston Smith has edited a collection of new translations of what hecalls "Mystical Classics of the World." A better title for the series would be "Spiritual Classics of the World." This includes "The Tibetan Book of the Dead," more correctly translated as "The GreatBook of Natural Liberation Through Understanding of the Between." In other words, this is a book about the Between. Yet, we know from modern Psi studies that it is totally mistaken. Human beings do not reincarnate as either animals or gods. There is no demon Yama to welcome you tothe Between. There is only the White Light, loving and forgiving. Another famous classic is The Bhagavad-Gita. I reject it for its reliance on and acceptance of Caste.India must get rid of the Caste system, if it is to be a modern democracy. The Gita takes place inthe middle of a battlefield, with two huge armies waiting to destroy each other. The form of it is along argument made by the god Krishna to Prince Arjuna, that it is his duty as a member of thewarrior caste to make war and sacrifice all these millions of warriors on both sides. Modernspiritual seekers always avoid violence if they can, and make war only in self-defense, not touphold a social duty to be a great warrior.Huston's collection also includes THE ESSENTIAL KABBALAH, THE TAO TE CHING, THEESSENTIAL RUMI, and THE WAY OF A PILGRIM, all familiar except the last. THE WAY OF APILGRIM is the personal story of an anonymous wandering "Starets" in 19th Century Russia, afamiliar type in Orthodox Christianity. The last and most famous of these wandering holy men wasRasputin, a man of many faults and gifts, a crude peasant who had a way with the women, anenormous capacity for alcohol and a tremendous resistance to poison.1
Rumi was a poet, but was he a mystic? He founded the order of the whirling Dervishes, so he isclearly an important person in the history of Sufism. Was he a mystic? I have always had mydoubts. Recall that (1) illumination, (2) Noesis, (3) ecstasy, and (4) unitary experience define amystical experience. Of course, there is a lot more to spirituality than mysticism. Both the Gita and the Tao Te Ching come from long oral traditions, finally written down. I can'thelp but wonder if here and there the meaning of a metaphor hasn't been lost, as happened inChristianity with the metaphor of "the kingdom of heaven," (the realm of the quintessence).Speaking of Christianity, shouldn't Huston's collection contain a translation of the Coptic GOSPELOF THOMAS?Many modern seekers have gone to India, to find themselves gurus. Some gurus came to America,sensing easy pickings. Most of these gurus required their disciples to hand over all their  possessions, and in this way some gurus became wealthy. One had 30 Rolls Royce cars. How isthat holy? How is that different from the televangelists who browbeat the poor and the elderly for money to construct vast monuments to their own egos? Shouting, ignorant and intolerant, thesetelevangelists remind me of the mad Mullahs of Saudi Arabia, and all others who misuse the promise of spirituality out of greed, hatred and ambition. All religions are based on fear, but thereis nothing to fear. We all exist forever and ever, worlds without end, amen.I would beware of gurus who demanded all of my possessions and obedience.I would beware of "religion," since that is a synonym for "faith."I would beware of taking literally ancient books that were told and retold, copied and recopied,translated and mistranslated over thousands of years, while meanings change, metaphors change,and our worldviews and scientific knowledge change. For one thing, their original meaning is inthe ancient and universal language of Jungian symbolism, thus a literal translation is an unwholyand deliberate falsification. It is sometimes possible to reconstruct the original shape of a spiritualtradition by means of ancient books discovered in modern times and by modern archaeology and philology and I have done that.I would beware of any form of meditation that requires sitting quietly, focused on one thing.Sitting Zazen. Isn't that what the medieval Christian monks tried, with their liturgies around theclock? Did any of them become Enlightened? I don't think so. I would beware of any form of meditation that does not require solitude. Follow the life of the Seeker, as it is described in THEWORD OF ONE.In Buddhist meditation, they use the Self to explore the Self. Sometimes all they encounter is agreat lonely void. I think we must introduce more scientific and objective methods. Buddhists try toget rid of the ego. However, the ego is absolutely essential for the Western path, based on asuccession of geniuses, who must hold fast to their course despite a lifetime of rejection. Theremay be useful techniques to learn from oriental or shamanic traditions, but don't give up your critical sense, your skepticism, and your sense of self.2
In the chapters that follow, I will follow an approach to spirituality that includes mysticalexperience, symbolic divination and revelation. Divination, if it works, is itself a minor miracle.Ditto with revelation. Not all revelations are of equal value. We can give some weight to arevelation only if mystical experience confirms at least part of it. One that I give high marks is theEvolved Tarot, also known as the Word of One, the T tarot, or the Tarot of the Nameless One. The22 major arcana of the evolved tarot comprise a small part of a vast amount of material delivered by home-made Ouija board, using a silver dollar as the planchette, to a group of Seekers back in thewinter of 1962-63. I was not part of that group. John Starr Cooke and Rosalind Sharpe publishedit in 1969, again in 1970, and in 1992.The complete sessions were published in 1975 as Word of One, now available on-line.I was first attracted to the Major Arcana of the new tarot reproduced in a newspaper once published by Llewellyn Press, called The Gnostica News. This was in the 1970s. The image of the Deliverer caught my attention. I realized that it described the Illumination of Fire, and shows the lesser mystical states which make up the path leading to the fire. A true revelation can vastly extend onesmetaphysical knowledge. We must test it against all of our other ways of knowing. These are books written entirely in the language of symbolism, humanity’s only universal language. Nothing is arbitrary in the language of symbolism. Learning the language of symbolism is asimportant for the science of metaphysics as learning higher math is important for the science of  physics. THE BOOK OF THE KNOWER reassures me that our souls do indeed have immortality as part of the ONE. THE BOOK OF THE CITADEL tells me that the soul creates minds. I shall close thischapter with some quotes from the words of the Nameless One. A few explanations are required to understand these quotes. The source of this material never gaveitself a name, so John Cooke referred to the source as “WE,” identifying it with a collective self.The source gave each participant a new name, and called John Cooke "Legion." The Doer is theevolved form of the Sun card, and is a seven-year-old boy, holding an unrolled scroll and a ribbonthat loosely holds a black horse. A white horse rears on a human skull. A beautifully figured Sun ishigh overhead. The Book of the Mother represents Creation. She is the new version of the HighPriestess. All quotes are from Word of One. Remember that these statements were made in thewinter of 1962-63. Even if true then, they may not be true now. You must judge."ONE is all.... Deny not ONE while you live. The world is full of those who say they seek ONE.How is it that seekers always blind themselves first to their surroundings? Until they remove thefilm, they seek in vain. Do you wish a word of comfort? There is none. Do you wish a better road?There is none. Do you wish a Savior? There is none. For you, there is only ONE. You will makethat do." p. 385."There is a stirring felt in sleeping regions. Great must be the full awaking. Neither din nor forceshall accomplish this. The awakened One arises. The sleeping one sleeps. There is an arouser but hewakes not up."--P. 170.3

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