Wednesday, May 16, 2018

From The Archives: Vulcan Purple Microdot Muskrat Love

[First Posted: February 5, 2011]

As a psychotherapist, I have developed what could be called increased, perhaps "extra-sensitive" skills of self-introspection from my own many years of personal therapy, clarified and strengthened by working with others to therapeutically help them discover, develop, and use the same kind of skills. I have been further blessed by such abilities because they have motivated and enabled me to deeply observe the strange and wonderful intimate processes that are part of my mediumship abilities. I've often felt alone in this aspect when it comes to other spirit mediums, comparatively speaking. In the several hundred books on mediums and mediumship subjects in my personal library, and over the course of many years of research, the almost total lack of anyone asking mediums how they felt, what they were experiencing from an internal perspective, or for their own opinions, has become so obvious and glaring that I sometimes wonder if there wasn't some kind of unspoken or even unconscious agenda to avoid or even purposely suppress such important information. If the mediums have been the authors of the books, even they fail to even begin to look beneath the surface of their own psychological processes — and if they have, never indicate it, other than maybe thoughts about certain spiritual processes or religious references. This kind of omission was briefly mentioned in my recent paper, The Disparity of a “Standards of Care” for Spirit Mediumship as a Permissible Behavioral Health Care Profession, as part of an exploration into the kinds of personal ethics mediums may or may not have regarding the practice of their skills. Regarding Carl A. Wickland's use of his wife's mediumship abilities to assist individuals possibly overwhelmed by spirit possession, I note:
There are no clear indications in his book (Thirty Years Among The Dead) regarding his wife’s mediumistic approaches in terms of her standards of care or ethics. This is not surprising, as historically mediums have been seen more as objective ways and means and less as persons within their own right, and so their own personal and psychological processes have often been overlooked.
It is this phenomenon of objectifying mediums as a ways and means to an end "in the name of science" while ignoring the humanity of the actual medium that raises questions in my mind, as well as feelings of sadness mixed with anger — combining into a frustration which speaks to the inhuman practice of transgressing the personal boundaries of another human being, as if the person were not a person, but a machine or gadget to plug in and then watch. Indeed, I wonder at the use of the word "instrument" many mediums apply to themselves when speaking of their work. I am sure that many mediums would resonate with my feelings when I'm approached by others to "do" readings for them, as if it's some kind of automatic process I can switch on and off, with no regard for me as a person. ("Just let me put my medium's beanie on, first!") Of course, I'm referring to the ego-mind's selfish demands for instant gratification. Never mind that the medium might have some feelings about it. A few modern mediums have sometimes reported how intense mediumship experiences affect them, and a certain part of the western cultures that support mediumship have developed their own set of ethics that have evolved safeguards against behaviours at seances that might interfere with ectoplasmic manifestations and endanger the medium's health and even life. We refer to this in The Risen:
These “side effects” have been observed by many medium investigators, including C. W. Leadbeater, a well-known figure and prolific writer of the Theosophical Movement. He noted in his research that the “feeling of lassitude and of having the life dragged out of them is naturally terribly common among mediums.” He also likened it to “a condition closely resembling the shock which follows a surgical operation.”  (p. 170)
It is from all this slight rant and rambling that I've often wondered, and still do, why few people ask me "what's it like?"  Most likely because they aren't really all that concerned. (And so few read this blog, anyway.) But of course, now hoisted by my own petard, I have to confess that I'm not sure how to put it into words if I were asked. I've no doubt that the few attempts made in our book do no more justice to the experience than someone trying to document an LSD trip. In our book, I even once referred to Tim's communications to me as "sounding like a Vulcan on acid."

I see now all this blather does have a purpose, as I do want to try and share something that recently happened from which a few others might find some kind of understanding arise — or at least to try to reveal some of the wonder of it all. While sitting in session with a patient last evening, who had my attention firmly fastened on some very intense issues of past trauma and present relationship dramas, I was suddenly aware that Tim was standing to the right of me. While there would have been no room for a physical person to be there, he had no problem occupying the same space as a plant stand and a floor lamp. I felt something "shift" in my own space so that I was with him in his own space while he was in mine, and this juxtaposition seemed to bridge any gaps in our dimension so that we were creating a new one, just for the two of us. Somehow, I could now see, hear, touch, feel, and even move in this new dimension with Tim, while I also continued to sit facing my patient, with whom I also continued to see, hear, emotionally feel and interact. All this happened in less than the time it took for an eye to blink or even its pupil to dilate.

Tim was just standing there, next to me, with me, and said, "Hi, you."  And I said back, "Hi, you." And within those four words exchanged, such depths of love, comfort, peace, joy and ecstasy suddenly flared that I thought I would faint (all the while interacting with my patient) while my physical body reacted by crying two huge tears that ran down each cheek. Fortunately, because it was evening and the room was in its usual dimly lit state, my patient couldn't see that I was crying from across the room — but saw or felt something, and suddenly stopped and asked, "Did it just get lighter in here? I'm seeing light on your face, where's it coming from?" and all I could say was, "I don't know ... that's strange." And then just as suddenly my patient seemed to forget what was just said, and sat back and continued talking on as if nothing had happened — a clear demonstration of psychospiritual amnesia if ever I've seen one.

Tim was still there, and acted as if only he and I were the only ones in time and space, and the only other intelligible thing I can share is that for some indeterminable amount of time, we basked in the sheer joy of being so closely joined by one another's presence — a closeness that cannot be experienced by two people in material human bodies on earth. Then we would "dim" as a light would dim, but then flare up again, over and over, as if we were dialing our feelings up and down for the sheer orgasmic spirit of it all. Finally I had to reach for the box of tissues and pretend  to blow my nose, because the tears were flowing down my face with total abandon. And then Tim dimmed, and dimmed some more, and I was left with the unmistakable afterglow of just having made love.

Maybe that's why mediums don't say  much about what's really going on. Never mind.

Nature is My Medicine

[First Posted May 2010]

How strange that Nature does not knock, and yet does not intrude!
~Emily Dickinson
I only went out for a walk and finally concluded
to stay out till sundown for going out, I found, was really going in.
~John Muir

I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station,
Through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.
~ George Washington Carver

Early last evening as the sun was setting, while snuggled on the couch with the little monsters and talking with a friend on the phone, I could see out a window overlooking the forest that runs along the Hudson river to the west. The night sky was quite clear with only a few clouds, and some stars were just visible. But what really caught my attention was the very large, very bright twinkling light just above the trees, which I thought at first might have been a hovering helicopter's spotlight. But it continued to stay still for way too long, and when I saw the much tinier light of a plane go by it, I had to mention to my friend on the phone that I was seeing something very strange. I'm in Manhattan, and although my friend lives in Queens across the East River, he could also see the very large light in the sky. We both saw it as a brilliant golden white, which was flickering so much that it appeared to be moving, but actually wasn't. Some of the shafts of light streaming from it were of the most beautiful bluebird blue and emerald green.

Were the Three Magi heading towards it on the Staten Island Ferry? Hopefully not, if they got the same idea and googled it on their iphones to discover it can only be the other divinity —Venus — sometimes called the Morning Star, but at this time of the year, it's known as the Evening Star. It will appear as a brilliant yellow star in the evening sky, right after sunset, until late September 2010. Located 20° above the western horizon one hour after sundown, it will remain on view until after 10 P.M. local daylight time. This gift of Nature was the most perfect ending to any day I could ever imagine.

But the gifts of Nature don't just come out at night. This morning, although I slept fairly well, I had a difficult time getting up. Tim mentioned that the electromagnetic fields of the Earth are very active right now, switching polarities, and moving around, which affects how people and animals feel and think. I could see it was a glorious day and had a few hours before I had to begin work, so forced myself to go for a run in the woods; it wasn't easy. I was glad to finally rest on a bench at the top of a slight hill overlooking some fields and the river. The sun shining on the grass made it a brilliant green, and there were lots of birds and bugs hopping around in it. I noticed what looked like a very tiny, brilliant yellow bird in the grass about 25 feet away, and I could see its little head bobbing up and down — but unlike the other birds which were very busy swooping and landing and taking off, it stayed in the same spot, not moving around, which I though odd; I feared it might be hurt. Or maybe it wasn't a bird. After five very long minutes, I carefully made my way closer, and could see that it was indeed a little yellow bird - a finch - and that it was carefully but joyfully sipping water from the dew still wet on the blades of grass. It continued to drink, and I marveled that such a little thing could be so thirsty and drink so much water.

I then noticed just how wet the field was, which was waving slightly in the breezes, and the drops of dew were lit up and twinkling, very much like miniature Venuses in a sea of grass and flowers. The whole expanse seemed alive, and the dew drops grew larger, somehow, and I fell into an altered state of consciousness that had no sense of time, only of the glowing points of light glittering all around me, and of the sounds of birds singing in ecstasy in the background. When I finally headed back to my home, I felt I had been transported to a new level of life, energized and at peace. Nature is my medicine, as Sarah Moss-Wolfe once said.

As it also says in The Risen — and which directly reflects my experience of just being quiet and still, waiting, and achieving a transformation —

Modern humankind has largely forgotten that we are an integral and inseparable part of Nature—that we are Nature. People listen more to the simulate self’s artificial instructions instead of the indwelling natural ones that arise from the awareness of being an inseparable component of Nature. Animals, birds, trees, flowers, and butterflies do not have an interfering ego-mind. “Survival of the fittest” does not mean that certain beings have to destroy others in order to live, although that is how the ego-mind justifies its own beliefs. It means that all components of Nature are in a continual process of experiencing how all living things fit together. The Energy of Nature, which is also our energy, does not play any mind games in order to survive, for Nature simply is—and we simply are, too.

The ego-mind’s misdirecting chatter can be softened by quietly resting within Nature—walking in a meadow or gazing up through the trees at the stars. In joining Nature, we join as Authentic Self. Allowing the inner-dwelling Authentic Self to quietly emerge and observe and take in the surroundings of Nature will calm and soothe the ego-mind, which especially malfunctions when it perceives threats coming from other ego-minds. If we sit quietly and long enough in some setting of Nature, the ego-mind will be unable to continually perceive a threat. It will then subside in its negative ways, at least temporarily, and be still for a while.

The more we allow such quiet sitting, the more familiar we’ll become with the feeling of the ego-mind receding. Spend this time quietly observing a tree, for instance. The ego-mind will not be able to get a tree to play mind games with it. Our Self-As-Nature—Authentic Self—can then emerge, and from there we’ll begin to re-identify with the rest of Nature around us. Feelings of alienation, loneliness, and abandonment will begin to become lighter.