Resh am I, the Countenance and Head
Which brings to you the glory of the Sun
And melts away all darkness with the Light
The entire physical world is an indivisible, coherent, and homogenous entity which symbolizes the Creator of it all.
We are reminded daily that we are on a solar journey through this field of vision; weaving a complex tapestry with our fellow humans; each strand of the web important to the whole. As confused as we sometimes become, the sun shines throughout this weaving continually, bringing us the Summer Solstice yet again.
The beauty of forests, flowers, and animals engaged in productive activity; the magnificent processes of life unfolding beneath our feet in the natural world, is both inspiring and humbling.. As with the magnificent sunflower, the humble dandelion with its bright yellow petals and web of fine tendrils reflect the beauty of our sun and its infinite possibilities.
Our continual reminders of the benevolence of the universe brings comfort in troubled times–and a focus upon things that matter and the ability to each day find activity that will bring Light to someone, offer Love to a brother in need, and give Life to the things we value above all else–compassion to all sentient beings.
. We live in a vast ocean of radiant activity– our contribution to this cosmic sea can be profound, as long as our will to good overrides all other motivations, and we remain aligned with our Life’s mission as we accepted it before our present earth life began.
The Great Being of the Christos shines above and throughout our universe, and our Lord Jesus Christ and our Mother Mary stand as channels of this great Light to keep all of us on the path. I’m reminded now to look to the helpers; they give us continual messages of profound Hope. We just have to look.
May our inner Sun shine upon all activities and communications!
In Christ’s Light, Live & Love,
Rev. Mary Anderson
.“To stand at the edge of the sea, to sense the ebb and flow of the tides, to feel the breath of a mist moving over a great salt marsh, to watch the flight of shore birds that have swept up and down the surf lines of the continents for untold thousands of years, to see the running of the old eels and the young shad to the sea, is to have knowledge of things that are as nearly eternal as any earthly life can be” -Rachel Carson
From Father Paul – Jesus Christ and Redemption – April 7 1970
I’m going to talk tonight about Jesus Christ and the redemption of the universe. We went into a little of the reality of the Master last night and I want to go a little further, because I think we should learn to look at the works of the Master as more of a reality rather than a historical situation. We can find many books of the historical side of Jesus’ life and they’re very interesting and very intriguing and very informative. It places us in the picture of the times, but we fail to get from these sorts of things the true realities of what really took place on Calvary and also what is taking place now.
And here of course again, is one of the common mistakes of the Christian faith in general–that we celebrate those events of the past which of course are truly great; but from a universal standpoint, take place in our life every day, everyone of us. We miss the true realities which are very little spoken about.
Redemption is something that is not spoken about so much and which really isn’t much understood. It’s one of those things which we look to as “well, it happened and I got the grace from it, so I guess I won’t have to worry about that one any longer.” But we forget that there is no such thing as time in the reality of this universe, and so we miss the perpetual re-enactment of the redemption which is something going on all the time.
Reading: “The indwelling spirit that Jesus Christ sends us not only imparts to our souls the ontological life of God through grace, but he exerts his influence on our bodies as well. And if the spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, then He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also bring to life our mortal bodies because of his spirit who dwells within you…Christ’s dominion over the whole universe is pictured most clearly in Paul’s later epistles, those written in captivity, especially Colossians and Ephesians…
I want to go over one thing and ask one or two questions here. How could man and his error, or sin, or whatever you want to call it, and his lack of taking hold of his destiny affect the animal kingdom? Anybody have any answers on this? Student: “Man’s vibration would affect everyone and everything that was around it.”
Father Paul: That’s right. In other words, it’s a pretty good bet that the reason we have such persistent visitors here in this atmosphere is because we’re not behaving ourselves and keeping things straight and they want to make sure that they are kept straight in some way or other, so’s not to affect their planet and their life. You see what I’m talking about? That if we change the influences on this planet, we’ve changed the influences on the whole Solar System. Because the relation, our relation to the Sun, the First Born, and its polar attraction to it affects all the other planets, because they have a definite electro-magnetic relation and spiritual relation to us–and this definitely changes the relationship of all of the planets and the people as a whole. Let any one of these planets become extinct of people, and we would have a radical change in the rest of this solar system or in the Body of God.
It is so hard for us to get down to the cold reality of the fact that what many of the things that Jesus was talking about, as far as redemption was concerned, are definitely very real and not something up here in the seventh heaven. Our playing around with atomic bombs and one thing or another–sure they are terrifically small in comparison to the size of the earth but there is a definite field relationship between ourselves and the sun, and the other planets.
Now this doesn’t change for one minute the tremendous feeling and potential of what the Master did. Because we bring something down to cold hard science doesn’t belittle the greatness of this man or any man or any Teacher or God Himself, because we have a scientific reason for it. For it seems to be the general contention of most teachers that as quick as you have a reason for something and it is proven to be scientifically accurate and correct and you put it in this category, it is no longer part of your religion and faith. And they seem to feel that your faith and knowing; the beauty of it is cut off and that you have lost something if you have broken open a mystery. To me, it is absolutely the opposite. Because to me to see God in action and see what our Lord has done for us here and see how precisely it works, how precisely these things and orbs function, gives to me a greater joy, a greater confidence, and greater faith in God and in our Lord Jesus Christ, because I see it works. And it works right along every day without having to be wound up each day…
[reading from Colossians]: By sending his son in the likeness of sinful flesh as a sin offering, he has condemned sin in the flesh. Christ condemned sin in the flesh through his death and resurrection, whereby he passed gloriously from the state of flesh–‘sarx’–to that of spirit: ‘pneuma.’ Confined to his flesh body Christ was not able to share his divine life with other men. After his glorious resurrection he, the last Adam, because a spirit imparting life. The first representing man failed to resist sin; the second Adam would be man in the fullest sense by triumph over sin, destroying death and its sting, and bringing all men at least the possibility of leaving their carnal conditions and estrangements from God in order to put on the spirit of light in God.”
Here is where we speak of the removal of the carnal sin though the absolution from the priest, of course. The point is that this is all a very distinct and an orderly path. But we have gotten to the point as in…well, Christian Science is one, and then the religious science is another: they have utilized the Law as a foundation of a faith, and it becomes very, very mechanical, very mechanical. So much that they lose the opportunity of the grace and the beauty of this, the seeing of it, and the appreciation and the joy of it, so that they have lost the zest of the Spirit, you see, because of their mechanical actions and approach to the Laws of God and Jesus Christ. Quite true, it is very definitely orderly, quite definitely there and quite definitely it will function so and so. But though it does function so and so, that should not take away from you the fact that this was done by love and sacrifice, that was ordained and set up, and it was not an accidental happening. It was a definite gift. And this is taken care of in the actions, as far as the Law is concerned, but people get cold so that they don’t react to these things in what the yogi would call bhakti yoga…
On the universal level Jesus is saying that he came here as Lord of Earth and he is making corrections to the earth’s atmosphere, to the earth’s magnetic fields, to the amount of the pure sunlight that he’s able to let in, so as to bring us back into balance. This is redemption because it makes it possible for man to go on living and get his experience and his joy out of life. (Now, this is not the atonement) This isn’t forgiving the past sin. Atonement is those things of the past; this redemption is an existing thing now, a redeeming of the physical being into the spiritual reality and into the spiritual heaven world–rebirth, being born again.
Student: “Is it a restoration?” F.P. Yes. Student: This the remission? F.P.”yes, it’s there, but this is a worldly thing now. This is the world itself we’re talking about. This is universal…
It’s pretty hard to get hold of this. This is why I keep dwelling on it. Because as soon as you can hold this idea of the universal things and their function, then you can open up and get away from your littleness. Because you can see your extreme smallness in its greatness; you see? The is the answer of redemption; bringing man into his own greater reality. And thus, the power and the force brings on the regeneration and you become what you should be–a spiritual being. The flesh becomes of the Light. It says in Revelations that the sun shall be needed no more, for there will be internal Light on the earth. That’s what they’re talking about…the steps toward it anyway….what the people think and what the people do and bring into reality is going to determine what the influence of the planet is and what and this is what the Master has brought to a head, you might say, because we’re coming into a New Age…
Solar Eclipse: There is no more awe-inspiring event in nature than the majesty of a total solar eclipse. In those brief enchanting minutes, the natural becomes the supernatural. Day shifts to night, the temperature dramatically drops and stars magically glow in a rapidly darkened sky. The ancients marveled at this miracle of the Sun being swallowed in the heavens. Its mystery and appeal are timeless. Some are calling 2017 the year of the great American eclipse. On August 21 at 18.30 UT (Universal Time), a total solar eclipse will move right across the US, from west to east. It will attract as much publicity as the great eclipse of August 1999, which it is related to. Earlier in the year, on February 26 at 14.58 UT, an annular solar eclipse, when the Moon moves across the Sun yet the rim of the solar disk is still visible, will cross the southern tips of South America and move into central Africa. Historically, the recording of eclipses is a cross cultural phenomenon. Such is recorded in the annals of Chinese astronomers, who kept meticulous records dating back to 2400BCE. The Sun represented the emperor and the earliest Chinese word for an eclipse was shih, meaning to eat or consume. The Sun being devoured by Rahu, the famed dragon’s head of Hindu mythology, or the Sun Dogs of Viking and Korean legends, are part of cultural eclipse traditions By the 6th century BCE, Chaldean astrologers had perfected a method of identifying the precise eclipse path. It involved identifying specific families of eclipses, which began at either the North or South Pole and gradually made their way toward the opposite pole as they traversed the globe in a longer 1000-plus-year cycle. Each successive eclipse in a particular family occurred 18 years, 11 days and eight hours apart, and was part of a numbered series called the Saros cycle. The August 21, 2017, solar eclipse is associated with Saros series number 145. This extremely important family of eclipses started in 1639, but this family didn’t produce a total eclipse until 1927. Since then, each one has been associated with breakthroughs in aeronautics, television and satellite communications and the political division known as the Cold War. …The August eclipse will be the first to go coast to coast across the U.S. since 1918. Location is essential for viewing the totality of a solar eclipse, which occurs in a relatively narrow path or band approximately 100 kilometres wide. Cities such as Idaho Falls, Lincoln, Nashville, Columbia and Charleston will all experience eclipse totality on August 21, 2017, with Kansas City and St Louis at the edge…. Depending on where along this pathway you are, the moon will cover the entire sun for up to 2 minutes and 40 seconds. The path begins in Oregon and crosses through portions of Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, and North Carolina before ending in South Carolina. This August 21 eclipse occurs near the fixed star Regulus, one of the four royal ancient stars of Persia. The fall of important leaders or statesmen must be factored in with this star near the eclipse.
Buddhist Nuns on Bicycle Treks
Clad in black sweatpants, red jackets and white helmets, the hundreds of cyclists pedaling the treacherously steep, narrow mountain passes to India from Nepal could be mistaken for a Himalayan version of the Tour de France. The similarity, however, ends there. This journey is longer and tougher, the prize has no financial value or global recognition and the participants are not professional cyclists but Buddhist nuns from India, Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet. Five hundred nuns from the Buddhist sect known as the Drukpa Order, on Saturday complete a 4,000-km (2,485 mile) bicycle trek from Nepal’s Kathmandu to the northern city of Leh in India to raise awareness about human trafficking in the remote region. “When we were doing relief work in Nepal after the earthquakes last year, we heard how girls from poor families were being sold because their parents could not afford to keep them anymore,” 22-year-old nun Jigme Konchok Lhamo ….South Asia may boast women leaders and be home to cultures that revere motherhood and worship female deities, but many girls and women live with the threat of violence and without many basic rights. From honor killings in Pakistan to feticide in India and child marriage in Nepal, women face a barrage of threats, although growing awareness, better laws and economic empowerment are bringing a slow change in attitudes…The bicycle trek, from Nepal into India, is nothing new for the Drukpa nuns. This is the fourth such journey they have made, meeting local people, government officials and religious leaders to spread messages of gender equality, peaceful co-existence and respect for the environment. They also deliver food to the poor, help villagers get medical care and are dubbed the “Kung Fu nuns” due to their training in martial arts. Led by the Gyalwang Drukpa, head of the Drukpa Order, the nuns raise eyebrows, especially among Buddhists for their unorthodox activities.”Traditionally Buddhist nuns are treated very differently from monks. They cook and clean and are not allowed to exercise. But his Holiness thought this was nonsense and decided to buck the trend,” said Carrie Lee, president of Live to Love International, a charity which works with the Drukpa nuns to support marginalized Himalayan communities.”Among other things, he gave them leadership roles and even introduced Kung Fu classes for the nuns after they faced harassment and violence from monks who were disturbed by the growing shift of power dynamics,” she said.Over the last 12 years, the number of Drukpa nuns has grown to 500 from 30, said Lee, largely due to the progressive attitudes of the 53-year-old Gyalwang Drukpa, who was inspired by his mother to become an advocate for gender equality.
Twin earthquakes that struck Nepal in April and May 2015, which killed almost 9,000 people, left hundreds of thousands of families homeless and many without any means of income, led to an increase in children and women being trafficked.
More than 40,000 children lost their parents, were injured or were placed in precarious situations following the disaster, according to Nepali officials.
The Drukpa nuns said the earthquakes were a turning point in their understanding of human trafficking and that they felt a need to do more than travel to disaster-hit mountain villages with rice on their backs.
“People think that because we are nuns, we are supposed to stay in the temples and pray all the time. But praying is not enough,” said Jigme Konchok Lhamo.
“His Holiness teaches us that we have go out and act on the words that we pray. After all, actions speak louder than words,” she said.
(Reporting by Nita Bhalla, Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst. Thomson Reuters FoundationVisit news.trust.org)
The Last Barrier – Parable of the Olives
…”Listen, for God’s sake. You are here to learn, so go and clean out your ears and stay awake. Any story that I can tell you can be understood on many levels. If you were just on the level to hear how to make good olives, that is one thing; but you should be able to go beyond that, and anyway I would not have told the story unless I knew that you could understand. Now listen carefully.
The salt that preserved the olives in their sacks is the conditioning of your life. It must be washed away before any true work can be done. In order to obtain the best results, you must choose the best olives, of the finest quality. The olives may be seen as the many aspects of yourself; or, each olive could be said to be one person who is potentially useful to the Work. They say that ‘many are called but few are chosen.’ The jar, which must be carefully cleaned in all ways, is either your body or the space occupied by you or the group. Water takes on the color of the vessel that contains it, and we want this water to be as clear as a mountain stream. That is why ritual washing is so important….
The olives are very delicate after the cleaning away of the preservatives so they are place into a jar carefully and with loving kindness and of course, awareness. Next comes the boiling water. That is the first baptism, the baptism with water. It is a total immersion which is, in one sense, in the relative world, very painful. You must understand that this path requires conscious suffering. Remember that the rose bush can produce a perfect rose only through correct pruning. The pruning may hurt the plant temporarily, but if the plant were able to understand the necessity, then it would be filled with joy each time the gardener came with the knife. If we enter this path, then we must recognize the necessity of the suffering.
The water is left in the jar only long enough for the olives to swell. The skin must not break, for if one olive spoils, the others will be ruined. The cook must know how long the water should remain in the jar, and at what temperature.
Now the cook adds lemon and mint. Such a good blend of flavors! You should try it with roast lamb–delicious! It is a perfect blend of acid and alkaline, positive and negative, yin and yang. With the final addition of olive oil, the olives come into balance. The last part of the operation is the second baptism. It is the baptism of the Spirit, the essence of the olives themselves. This is alchemy, you see, and it is a great riddle. You must add something to the melting pot, the cauldron, that is the very essence of what you are cooking. Then you screw the lid on tight, and leave it for forty days and forty nights, the length of time necessary for certain aspects of the creative process to take place. At the end of that time everything should be in balance and blended nicely together. The lemon and mint will have blended with the olive oil, and the flavors of the flesh of the olives and the oil, mixed with the other ingredients, will have become as one. The cycle is complete, and everything is returned to its source.
Then he smiled at me, acknowledging my amazement. You see, it is necessary to look beyond the appearance of things. There are indeed some real cooks in the world and, if you could eat the food that they have prepared, you would receive all that is necessary for the growth of the un-awakened man who sees with the eyes of the universe and hears with the ears of the winds and touches with the hands of God.
“In normal life we hardly realize how much more we receive than we give, and life cannot be rich without such gratitude. It is so easy to overestimate the importance of our own achievements compared with what we owe to the help of others.”
― Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers from Prison
Sometimes we must admit to knowing nothing. We may think and conjecture about great Truths, and admit to having been shown certain glimpses. But unless this is given from above, we must take care not to strongly state our opinions or momentary insights as though they were The One Truth, lest we be guilty of misleading someone.
Humility is different for everyone. For some it means sitting in a corner and keeping quiet; for others (who prefer to sit in a corner) it means standing up to be heard, even though the experience may be humiliating in the extreme.
~~ Father Paul said, you’ll never get anywhere until you can look an ant in the eye.
-from Pondering R. Mother Ruth Blighton