April 15, 2018
Let all the Earth Be Still
Joyce Krantz: Larry and I recently returned from spending a few months in Tucson, Arizona. We enjoy the Sonoran Desert, particularly in the winter when the warm temperatures allow us to get outside and exercise. The city has built a loop of over 100 miles of car-free walking paths. The eleven-mile Rillito River Park trail that winds through Tucson's north end, passes by the condo development where we stay, so our access to it is easy. Before we left Tucson, I took one last walk along the Rillito on a bright, warm weekday afternoon. As I was walking briskly to elevate my heart rate and exercise my legs, I occasionally passed other walkers doing the same. Intermittently a lone biker or a peloton of them would stream pass me ringing their bells or calling out, "On your left," to let me know they were passing. It was quite delightful to feel this streaming energy as the pulse of the city vibrated in the background with sounds of traffic in the distance, an occasional plane flying overhead and the crunch of the sandy, desert soil beneath my feet.
The Rillito River for most of the year is a dry riverbed until the Southwest monsoon rains come. Then the five mountain ranges, which surround Tucson like a bowl, feed their rainfall into the Rillito. It can transform into a raging river and become quite a remarkable sight and force. The day of my walk the riverbed was dry, but with lots of activity—rabbits, lizards and ground squirrels scurrying about with humming birds and hawks flying around and overhead. The path took me by a big commercial greenhouse with acres of desert plants and cacti. Adjacent to it was a rescue horse farm with three resident sows sleeping in the sun next to the fence, while a couple of blackbirds were picking at their lunch of fruits and vegetables. Just beyond there was a dog park with a very large picnic shelter.
As I approached the bend to the park I could hear the sound of a basketball bouncing and the rising noise of traffic as the path wound closer to the highway. Then I perceived a sudden deepening change in the atmosphere and was struck with unexpected awe to see a group of people moving in silent rhythm and harmony together under the shelter, practicing Tai chi. There were six or seven of them in a range of ages, with one appearing to lead the group. The energy emanating from them was palpable. Their movements were focused and fluid as they danced in unison through space. I felt transported into another world. I wondered if others could sense this.
Shortly, a biker came into view and was headed our way. His vision of the shelter was somewhat obscured by trees but he started to slow as he approached and turned with curiosity, as if a magnet drew him. I thought how beautiful this scene was—a symbol of man moving in step with Life's currents and the power that it generates. It certainly inspired me to be more conscious of my own movements as I finished my walk. Feeling the earth underneath my feet and my connection to Mother Nature and to the planet itself.
Volker, in his last talk, spoke of our capacity of spiritual perception, to discern what is going on beyond the surface appearance of things. What are the rhythms of Life that are pulsating now? How can these capacities more accurately translate the invisible into the visible? In my example of the dancers I was quite aware of stillness present. There wasn't any shouting or struggle but a quiet focus of movement. Interesting how silent most of nature's rhythms are. We don't hear our hearts beating as they pump five liters of blood every minute through our bodies. Nor do we hear our lungs inhale and exhale oxygen unless we are deliberate in doing so. The earth is in silent orbit around the sun. The trees grow and the flowers spring forth with very little murmuring. Contrast that to our noisy vehicles and planes and human chatter. There is a line from the poet Rumi where he says, "There is a voice that doesn't use words. Listen!" Our ability to hear that voice resides in our deepest desire to orient to it.
As a woman, I am particularly aware of the heart and its role in perceiving spirit. Women have this wonderful capacity to connect. We can spend hours conversing over lunch. For women, it's like weaving a tapestry together. We are connecting at levels that are beyond the words. We feel empathically. The desire to nurture and love is natural to our Being. And it is very creative and life-affirming when our hearts are in the right tranquil place together—magic unfolds.
It is a profound truth that to know spirit is to express it. To know love is to be loving. To know abundance is to be generous. It is the radiant aspect of our perception. We perceive what is coming to us out of the earth and we perceive what is moving through us into the earth. With the way things are in the world there are many currents lifting up to be purified. Wrong function of the past coming back to be clarified. We can feel a lot of things, and we can embrace it all in the radiant expression of who we truly are.
Life is the inexorable victor here! If we think with our outer minds that we can control the currents and intentions of Life we are sadly mistaken, and we'll know it by being buffeted around in sorrow and misery as we struggle against its force. If we think with our outer mind's judgements that we can sort the world's mess out, including the distorted past creations of our wrong function, we are again mistaken because the scope and magnitude of the required shift lies further upstream. What we can do is be present now, surrendering to the beauty of Life and expressing to our greatest vision that which Life would have us bring into this moment.
Buckminster Fuller, a renowned architect and thinker, once said, "There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it is going to be a butterfly." There are processes working out that are hidden from our conscious view. But we can be assured that the transformation underway is moving inexorably from the caterpillar to the butterfly state and that is a wonderful thing!
Larry Krantz: One afternoon in Arizona, Joyce and I drove to the top of Mount Lemmon, where there are world-renown observatories. Many famous pictures of galaxies, star clusters, and nebulae were photographed through these telescopes. Tucson has subdued lighting and the desert air is dry and clear, making for excellent viewing of the night sky. The local university runs an educational program, which we attended.
Our group was led to the edge of the mountain and handed binoculars. We had an excellent view of Venus in late afternoon. Then, the astronomer told us we should be able to see the "green flash" when the sun set. He had us turn around, to make sure no one peeked at the sun too early, which would not be good for our eyes, especially through binoculars. We turned back just as the last bit of sun was sinking below the horizon, which was below us, since we were at well over nine-thousand feet. I had seen this phenomenon once before, on a beach in Maui. We saw the green flash this time, as the sun's light was bent, or refracted, into a part of the light spectrum not usually seen, past orange and yellow, into green.
Later, in the pitch darkness of night, we were led to two observatories and had opportunity to look through their telescopes. We saw galaxies and star clusters and other wonders of the universe. It was quite remarkable, and easy to sense the orderliness and precision of the cosmos, the intelligence behind it, its beauty and majesty. The cosmos works meticulously well, like a fine clock, all the moving parts synchronous. It was amazing and awe-inspiring.
The astronomers told us that there are about 100 billion stars in our galaxy, the Milky Way. That number is staggering to me, especially when you consider that each star has its own system of planets and other objects circling it—each a solar system. I can write down a number that large and probably get the number of zeroes right, but that does not mean I really comprehend what that many star systems mean. We learned there are about 200 billion galaxies, each about the size of the Milky Way. So, the size of the universe is, to me, incomprehensible in scale. By comparison, our little planet, the earth, barely registers as a blip, just a tiny piece of dust. Our history and all that goes on here is as nothing on the cosmic scale.
That is one perspective.
Another is how we see the world from our personal viewpoints. Looking outward, our earthly circumstances loom large. The Earth is a big place, with oceans and land masses and people and creatures of all kinds. The stars are far away, little twinkling dots in the night sky. There is much to fill our view, things to do each day, so many challenges and opportunities. For many people, they see mostly problems and suffering, difficulties to be weathered.
So, I have presented two perspectives. Which is right? They seem contradictory. A duality. Do we view things from a cosmic perspective or do we view things through our human eyes? Many see this as a conundrum. After all, human consciousness sees divisiveness everywhere. People identify with their religions, or sect of a religion; they firmly think they are right and anyone else is, by comparison, a non-believer. The same could be said of one's country, state, ethnicity, or race. The world is divided, and divided again. People make choices to—hopefully—give themselves the best outcome. But then one self-centered view is pitted against another, which can lead to conflict and war. The world is sorted out and judged into what seems to be "good" for a person and what seems to be "bad"—to put it in the most basic terms.
When there are two possibilities, two perspectives, it seems one must be chosen. But, there is an alternative possibility: that they are both right, and both appropriate. To understand this requires a new way to look at things— from an elevated consciousness. We have to leave behind the "us" versus "them" frame of mind and realize there is only "us." Oneness is the rule of the universe. We may see from a point of balance that incorporates both perspectives—the micro and the macro. We see the cosmic whole, in which the Earth has a small part to play, and yet we are here on this planet to let what is true everywhere come into form through us. The small is significant. There is no duality. They are two ends of the same stick.
Let me give you another example of how a seeming duality is not what it appears—one that is closer and more intimate. I am amazed that this physical body I inhabit has lasted so long. So many things could have gone wrong, and yet it still works fairly well—even after many decades. I try to take care of it, eat healthy food and exercise and so on, but that is only a small part. A much wiser and more capable presence keeps this human form going. It manages all the complex processes, even when I am asleep. There have been times when I thought I was clever and ended up making terrible decisions, and yet, in spite of that, my life is filled with abundance. I was drawn to the right people and things have worked out better than I could have hoped. I take little credit for it. I realize, ever more so these days, that there is a guiding force that is aware of a multitude of factors and possibilities that elude me. This force guides me and helps me. I think of this intimate spiritual presence as my Guardian Angel. That may sound a little hokey, and maybe there is a better term, but it is accurate. I am so grateful to this spiritual presence, which is wonderful and caring and wise, exists beyond earthly drama, and lets me share the wisdom of the ages, as much as I can bear to know. It is enough to bring tears to my eyes, tears of thankfulness and love.
From this, I can offer a different perspective. I am this Presence. I am the One responsible for the human person known as Larry. It is my pleasure to send a triune ray of Love, Truth, and Life to him, and let it move through him in living expression. To the extent that he is open to my direction, he provides the means for me to enter the world of form, of space, and time, and to receive information from his experience. I love that human person, and we are one—whether he fully knows it or not. And, I also love the One that is greater than I am, and we are one. All is one, which extends from the Earth to the cosmos and beyond.
Again, a seeming duality. Two perspectives. One is the human view, the other the view of Being. It does not have to be one or the other. Most people, these days, see only through their material selves, and thus deny the guiding hand of spirit. We should be at a balance point, between the spiritual and the material. There is nothing wrong with the outer world. It is only wrong when the guidance of spirit is ignored and replaced by mental or emotional manipulation. We should rightly encompass both worlds—material and spiritual, and be in a place of stillness, a balance place of centering.
Can we speak as the Spiritual Being, the One behind our human forms? Some would say it is blasphemous, but I disagree. It is the reality. Jesus spoke of the Father within and said that He and the Father were one. And, He shifted into the Being portion of who He was when he said, "Before Abraham was, I am." That is the angel speaking. Can we follow His example?
Our human forms are time-dated; they had a beginning and will have an end, as is the case for all temporal things. We are also spirit, which is timeless and was here before the outer form came into existence; it will be here when the human person is gone. In that sense, there is no more death.
For this holy union to be effective, communication is essential at all levels. What is true in any piece is true of the whole. Our human forms have numerous communication systems that monitor our rate of breathing, maintain the acid-base level in the blood, and regulate hormone and enzyme levels. Information sharing is necessary in any successful, efficient, well-run system. There are myriad chemical messengers and feedback loops, so the body functions effectively. Communication among the various parts is necessary for smooth action.
Not long ago, someone came into my awareness in a vivid and remarkable way. It was very specific, startling in clarity. If my mind had been jumbled, worried about all kinds of things, I probably would not have noticed. But, I was in a still enough place that this person came through very clearly. At the time, I remarked to Joyce that this person was thinking of us just then and I knew what they wished to convey. I had not heard from this person in a long time. A few minutes later, up popped an email from this person, saying what I had thought he wanted to tell me—which was pretty cool. Who needs cell phones or email if we can communicate in this fashion? It was a glimpse of something possible, of a mode of communication, internally, done in silence.
Much sacred communication occurs through our atmospheres; it is the connecting substance, the medium of communication. It can receive the guidance and understanding of spirit and translate it into a form understood by human minds and hearts. It is the means of communication among ourselves, the other living systems of the Earth, and beyond. Our planet has an atmosphere. Although it is not easy to see, we are aware of it on a breezy day or when we breathe in or out. The sun also has an atmosphere of a different type. Its intense activity sends radiation outward in all directions, which includes heat and light, and forms a protective sphere that encompasses all the planets and other objects in our solar system. If the activity in the sun ceased, the radiation would stop.
So, too, with people. We generate an atmosphere when we are alive, but it dissipates when that person is no longer living. The quality of that atmosphere is a reflection of how that person lives his life. If a person is self-centered, coarse and selfish—the atmosphere will be of a low vibration. If a person is generous and giving and in alignment with the One within, the substance of atmosphere will be of a higher vibration, which opens various possibilities not available when the atmosphere is thin. We see through this atmosphere, we perceive spiritual things that way, and it lets us communicate with each other and the creatures of the Earth, when this substance is full and stable and we are quiet. Little can be heard in the chaos of most minds and hearts.
I sometimes think the present state of mankind is like a broken radio, which can pick up only one or two stations at the lower end of the dial, the lowest frequency. It crackles with static. A properly-functioning radio could pick up many stations, even the higher frequency ones at the far end of the dial. The person with the broken radio would have no idea of the kinds of programs further up the dial because he had no means to hear them.
We know the importance of tending the garden of our personal substance, to let it be in alignment with spirit. The outer circumstances may be challenging, but we can handle anything with grace and ease, for it is as nothing when viewed from a cosmic perspective. Who knows what is possible when the human mess is cleared up and higher modes of living and understanding come into view? We are limited in many ways, but that can all go away, if a New Earth comes into view. Although we can thrive as things are now, I remain hopeful that a Great Awakening is coming. We have vital parts to play in that. When oneness is known, all communication is sacred and intimate, whispered in love. It is a holy communion, full of insights, large and small, part of the flow of universal understanding. We may live at a point of stillness and balance, a place of rest, where the inner reality is revealed by the outer person and where we hear the silent voice of creation. So, let it be.
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