Monday, January 19, 2015

Love



"The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it. Through violence you may murder the liar, but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth. Through violence you may murder the hater, but you do not murder hate. In fact, violence merely increases hate. So it goes. Returning violence for violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction.... The chain reaction of evil — hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars — must be broken, or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation."

-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
"Strength to Love" (1963)


"Look how he abused me and beat me,
How he threw me down and robbed me."
Live with such thoughts and you live in hate.
"Look how he abused me and beat me,
How he threw me down and robbed me."
Abandon such thoughts and live in love.
In this world
Hate never yet dispelled hate.
Only love dispels hate.
This is the law,
Ancient and inexhaustible."

-Gautama Buddha
"The Dhammapada"

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Consciousness Exploration Journal
7/19/2014

An out-of-body and lucid dreaming group recently agreed to attempt to meet at the Statue of Liberty in the out-of-body state. Below is my attempt. No solid evidential data arose from the experiment. However, there were a few interesting synchronicities. 

I had been inside of a store shopping. I came outside to the parking lot, but was having trouble finding my car. I pressed the unlock button on the keychain and followed the chirp. I eventually found my car stuck in a nearby dirt lot. It looked as though somebody had taken it for a joy ride and then stripped it for parts. The more I examined the car, the more I realized that it looked nothing like my actual car. The surreal nature of the event struck me and I instantly became fully lucid. I quickly tried to recall what task I had planned to carry out. After a moment, I remembered, “the Statue of Liberty!” At that thought, I flew into the air and out of the setting. I zoomed through darkness for a few minutes. While flying through the darkness, I began to become aware of my body as it slept in bed. The typical vibrations were present. Putting too much attention on my physical sensations caused the OBE/LD to begin fading. I quickly refocused on the Statue of Liberty and continued on my way. 

I eventually arrived and flew directly into the statue. I flew up and into the inside of the very top of the torch. I sat there, a bit crammed, on a small white ledge. My legs hung through a square access hole. After a few moments, I noticed what looked like fire at the bottom of the statue. It began rising toward me. By the time the fire reached the raised arm of the statue, it looked more like bubbling lava. The lava crept closer. There was no sense of urgency and I was not frightened. I made a lazy effort to cool the lava and fire with my intent. My attempt made a slight difference, but the lava continued to rise. Perplexed, I thought to myself, “there must be some meaning to this.” At that thought, I heard Tom Campbell’s voice say, “why don’t you just ask.” So I did. I mentally asked, “what is the meaning of the fire? What is the purpose?” The reply that I got back was somewhat garbled. I asked for a resend. This time I received the reply mostly telepathically. The message, as I interpreted it, was that the fire and lava were to encourage me to go outside of the statue instead of hanging out on the inside. Chuckling to myself, I took the hint and moved down to the grass around the statue. 

It was nighttime. There was a parking lot nearby full of cars. The ground level around the statue was bustling with people. I noticed a man walking across the top of a bike rack like a tight rope walker. He fell and landed on the bar. He seemed to be okay, so I continued walking around. There were too many people to ask each one if they were from the OBE/LD group so I decided to hold up a sign that read, “OBE/LD.” I walked around the base of the statue holding the sign above my head and shouting, “OBE/LD!” After gaining mostly blank stares from eight or so people, I noticed a small group talking under a tree or some type of overhang. I approached them with my sign and said, “OBE/LD?” I instantly understood that they were there for the same reason and were part of the OBE/LD group. There were two women and two men. One or two of them had just been smoking - the smell of cigarette smoke was still lingering in the air. The men were both slim and fairly tall. The women were shorter and perhaps a touch heavy. Everybody seemed to be under 35 or so. The two men were maybe in their mid 20’s. We were all shimmering with excitement and a bit dumbfounded as to what to do next. We began discussing (mainly non-verbally) how we could identify each other for later verification. A few ideas were tossed around, but none seemed worthy. I began trying to focus on identifying each of the four members. As I did this, a cartoon character appeared on each of their shirts. The characters were mostly non-specific and didn’t seem to help much. In hindsight, I should have payed more attention to the specific traits of each cartoon character. I sensed that the others were doing the same identification attempt on me, so I looked down at my shirt. My shirt turned a very intense yellow. On it was a fairly simple character with large, cartoon eyes. Very suddenly, the experience ended and I found myself waking up in bed and needing to use the restroom. 

Follow up:
Several days after this experience, one of the members of the out of body and lucid dreaming group posted a picture of himself standing in front of the statue of liberty. Directly behind him were two temporary, metal gates. They gates looked identical to what I assumed was a bike rack in my experience. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Consciousness Exploration Journal
6/3/2014

I woke up at 3:14am and had trouble falling back to sleep. Eventually, I caught myself drifting. I began playing with the edge of being asleep and awake. I moved in and out of the beginnings of sleep paralysis. My body eventually drifted off to sleep and I floated “out” and into my bedroom. I walked around the house for a bit. A.D. and H.G. were on the couch sleeping (though I knew that this was not actually the case - both were in their beds). N.M. was in his room but had fallen out of bed and onto a pile of clothes in a laundry basket (also not the case - there was no laundry basket in his bedroom). I went back to A.D. and tried to wake her. I wanted to experiment and see if she would have any recollection of seeing me in her dreams, etc. She eventually woke up. I explained to her what I was doing and asked if she would try to remember this in the morning. She said that she would try. As I continued through the house, the state began to fade. I vigorously clapped my hands together in an attempt to maintain the state. I alternated between rubbing my hands together and clapping. I focused my full attention on holding the state. Though the state continued to fade, my awareness remained solid. I decided that I had better get to work exploring while I had the chance. I expressed an intent that I wanted to interact with a helpful being, guide, etc. I tried to let go of any expectations as to what might happen. 

Some time passed. Slowly, an interior setting began to materialize around me. On the floor to my left was a tiny kitten. I gently picked it up. As I pet the kitten, a woman with a baby walked in front of me. Then another woman. Slowly, the room filled and was eventually bustling with people. It looked to be some sort of gallery or art opening. I bumped into a man slightly younger than myself. Telepathically I asked him if these people were all aspects of a guide. His reply was not fully clear, but it seemed that perhaps the people were all aspects of me - or my “higher self” (the idea being that they were previous lives and lessons learned, etc). He led me to a room as if to show me something important. We walked into a booth of sorts with a window. On the other side of the window was an exhibit of some kind. In it, an animatronic dinosaur was investigating a dark hole in the wall. Coming out of the hole were dark tentacles. After some time, the display reset and started again. I began to get a strange feeling from the man causing me not to fully trust him. It became clear that he didn’t really have anything useful to share. Frustrated, I left. 

Back in the main room, I bumped into a large man. He had a scowl on his face and seemed to be some sort of bully. After staring me down, he turned and made a tiny drawing on the wall. I walked closer to see what it was. It was a small grumpy face. I looked at the man. I wasn’t sure what to make of him, but it was clear that he wasn’t interested in helping me. He was the bad apple of the crowd no doubt. Later, I ran into a little old lady. She seemed to be in charge to some degree and was busy helping other people. She led me down a hall by the hand saying very gently something like, “come this way Justin.” The next thing I knew, I was waking up in bed. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Consciousness Exploration Journal
5/14/2014

I was listening to The Lovit Center’s binaural beat track. I was drifting in and out of awareness. I began to have short dream vignettes and decided to just let myself drift toward sleep. I moved through several dream settings - not fully aware or lucid. I found myself driving in Los Alamos, NM. Still being partly aware that I had been meditating in bed, I was surprised how much it felt like I was really moving along in the car. At this thought, I became fully aware and lucid. I thought of my body lying in bed. My awareness left the dream setting and was back in my body. The sense of rapid movement remained. The typical vibrations were present along with some distant voices, music, buzzing, etc. I ignored these sensations and focused my full attention on floating up “out” of my body. I felt vague sensations of floating and even sitting up, but I still seemed to be too “connected.” I focused every bit of my intent that I could muster on “leaving” my body. I became distracted by the sound of my breathing. It was very deep and rhythmic as if I was asleep. Though I could hear my breathing, I felt completely separate from it. It was very much like listening to somebody else breath. Focusing on the breathing sound brought me fully back to my sleeping body. Vibrations were still present. I noticed that my mouth felt very dry. I closed my mouth and adjusted my tongue to relieve the discomfort. When I did, the vibrations subsided and I returned to being fully aware in my body. I should know better. Any focus on the body will almost always take me right back to it. I could have lived with a dry mouth. It is interesting to note how very different it feels to be aware while seemingly disconnected from the body. Though the level of awareness can be the same when connected or disconnected, the “feel” is very different. Perhaps it is analogous to the noticeably different feel of being in the tropics versus being in the desert.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Consciousness Exploration Journal
4/14/2014

I was floating along a very strange landscape. There was a glowing structure in the distance to my side. The bizarreness of the structure caused me to become fully lucid. I gathered my composure and watched as the landscape shifted to being that of the interior of a store. I began flying through the store, brushing past various objects and touching items with my hands as I zipped by. The environment felt exceptionally vivid and real. I don’t recall what happened after this, but at some point later, I found myself outside of a gas station. I was fully lucid but was allowing the story to unfold on its own. A woman and man were talking. The woman was breaking up with the man. I felt a strong attraction to the woman, but reminded myself to focus on being helpful. I went with her to the boyfriend’s apartment to help her move out. While there, she asked me to reinstall a strange looking smoke detector. My recall is fuzzy after that point. 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Scientific Beliefs

"We routinely adjust our interpretation of events and our scientific theories to satisfy the dogmatic requirements of our beliefs. Theories that violate our cultural and scientific beliefs are preposterous by definition and are not taken seriously by the majority of scientists. Our beliefs set the boundaries and define the limits of our science - they always have and any reasonably accurate history of science will verify that fact. Most scientists, from pre-history to the present day, feel that though belief obviously blinded their forbearers, it does not seriously inhibit their own clear vision. As time passes, the belief-blindness of those who came before appears more and more ridiculous yet current belief blindness remains as invisible as ever. If you think that we of the modern world - we who have come so far in our understanding and knowledge - are no longer seriously and dramatically limited by our beliefs, you are mistaken."

-Tom Campbell, My Big TOE