Emptiness Ain’t Empty

We owe a great deal to the original Buddha (as well, of course, to Jesus, saints, and great sages), for he imparted much-needed wisdom and divine teachings to humanity. In this article, were going to explore one of the terms that he used. Buddha described our essential nature (true Self) as emptiness. For some beings, that term has led to a great degree of confusion regarding our true nature; for others, who interpreted the term to mean total non-existence, it has led to a great deal of angst. The truth is that although we don’t exist (as an object, which is the current predominant view); it’s also true that we do exist as no-thing-ness.

For persons who (due to the inherent conditioning of this realm) are accustomed to assuming that the sum of their identity is only name and form, Buddha’s teachings will be difficult–if not impossible–to understand. What he was attempting to relate is that we’re not who we think ourselves to be. Thinking and the mind obviously deal with objects, or things of the apparent material world. In this case, we’re going to classify sensations, images, feelings, and thoughts as subtle “things” because we can sense the knowing of them. Through the introspecitve question “Who Am I?” we may delve into the nature of That which knows these objects.

A key that may help to unlock our understanding of Buddha’s teachings is found in a short but rich quote from I Am That, a book that is considered a spiritual classic. During talks with seekers, Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj (a sage from Bombay who realized his true nature at the age of thirty-four) stated the following: “Before the mindI Am. ‘I Am’ is not a thought in the mind. The mind happens to me, I do not happen to the mind.” He was stating that the real “You” comes first–prior to the mind that renders our body-mind and the world through the power of Maya (illusion). Let’s add to this understanding by a passage from Exodus 3:14: “And God said unto Moses, I Am That I Am: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I Am hath sent me unto you.” In both cases, we’re being informed that our true nature–“I Am”–exists as “no-thing” before we add descriptions of any kind, such as “I am…Bob or Betty (insert last name here). A third passage, attributed to Jesus, from The Gospel of Thomas (The Nag Hammadi Scriptures) may also be of help: Jesus said,If the flesh came into being because of the spirit, it is a marvel, but if spirit came into being because of the body, it is a marvel of marvel. Yet I marvel at how this great wealth come to dwell in this poverty.” In this passage, does it seem to you (as it does to me) that Jesus is amazed that persons could believe that the body-mind could possibly give rise to consciousness? At this point, we’re going to cut away to our roving reporters, Batman and Robin, who are on assignment for this article:

***

Robin (displaying excited smugness): “Golly gee-whiz, Batman, did you hear what they’re trying to tell us about consciousness? Hah, what baloney! That my consciousness–“i”–doesn’t arise in the head! By the way, I like what you’ve done with your cape.”

Batman (showing calm authority, hand to chin): “Thanks about the cape–thought it would add a little pizzazz. Now, about Consciousness, hmm, I thought you knew that the body-mind and the world arise in–and are known by–Consciousness.”

Robin (incredulous): “But that can’t be! My body feels so solid. It–and matter–has to come first!”

Batman (with fatherly tone): “You know, Robin, there’s a library in the Batcave. Feel free to use it anytime–a person could learn a lot. About your body-mind, it’s actually a function, not an entity. Buddha informed us that nothing has existence independent of the mind. Your body is perception–so is the world. This environment is only relatively real; everything’s in motion. The only absolute is Consciousness, aka God.

Robin (dejected, scuffing his shoes against the floor): “Who’d a thunk it? I didn’t know.”

Batman (putting a hand to Robin’s shoulder): “It’s okay, little buddy. Now you do.”

(Thank you, Batman and Robin, for sharing your insights. Now, back to the article:)

***

The emptiness that Buddha was attempting to relate to students is actually the rich fullness of our true Being. If you’ll allot a few minutes each day for meditation, you can directly realize that your mind and your body appear to you, true Self. Thus, you are Spirit, aka Consciousness. You’re a spiritual child of God, our Creator, having an apparent human existence in the dream called “life on Earth.” Such is the Waking State. This will be easier to understand if you search the internet and discover more about the nature of matter (spoiler: It’s not as solid as you’ve assumed). Almost all persons assume that matter is the foundation of “reality.” it’s not. Spirit is the foundation of our Being, now and forever.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Don’t Be A Slave

Many of you may be familiar with the hymn entitled Amazing Grace; it is a well-known hymn, at least in English-speaking parts of the world. The lyrics are quite touching; but their meaning is even more poignant when we realize that they were inspired by the true life circumstances of John Newton, the hymn’s author. From accounts online, John Newton was a strong willed young man, rebellious to most forms of authority. He was conscripted into the Royal Navy, but he was soon after discharged due to behavioural issues. As a result, he later served on various slave trade vessels. During a severe storm off of the coast of Ireland in 1748, he found himself crying out to God for mercy. A conversion occurred, but he continued to work on slave vessels for a few more years before finally retiring from sailing forever. In the following years of his life, he studied Christian theology and became an abolitionist. The following is the first stanza of his transformative hymn, Amazing Grace:

“Amazing grace, how sweet the sound,

That saved a wretch like me.

I once was lost, but now am found,

Was blind but now I see.”

“Amazing Grace” ~ John Newton

The lyrics clearly paint the picture regarding the feelings that arise when we recognize that we are “not who we think ourselves to be,” but, in fact, an aspect of our Divine Creator. The self is false through and through; a conceptual figment of the mind that bears no likeness to our spiritual Self. Through the perspective of Truth, we realize that our past behaviour related to ego (which is often dominated by self-centered and selfish nature) may have been less than desirable, to say the least. It is through understanding our Oneness–our unity in Consciousness (God)–that our behaviour may best reflect a higher degree of ideals and, most importantly, the love that is our Fountainhead.

If you believe that you’re the “person” that is identified by your particular name and form, such means that you’re still enslaved by your ego’s conditioned beliefs, without being aware of it. As Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj so rightly expressed: “To be a person is to be a asleep.” We’re asleep when we’re still ensnared within the net of Maya (illusion) and unaware that our true Self–right here, right now–is spiritual in nature. We’re still asleep when we believe that we’re separate from everything and everyone and, thus, in competition. We’re still asleep when we judge that we’re more special, or worse, than so-called other persons. We’re still asleep when we believe that we can hurt another Being without, in fact, hurting ourselves! To unchain ourselves from the ego’s domination, we needn’t endure John Newton’s perilous sea voyage. To land upon the shores of Awakeness, we need only make a daily habit of turning within, to the silent stillness within. Ultimately, however, it is via Divine Grace (as the hymn points out) that our higher Self calls to us. Through recognition, we are liberated from being lived by a lie. We, indeed, are free at last.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Anatomy of a Life

My passion, as many of you already know, is writing and sharing articles about Consciousness, the Law of Attraction, and Spirituality to help deepen our understanding of these interrelated subjects. My intention is to help alleviate some of the needless suffering in the apparent world. Here, as a change from my usual format, I offer a poem of mine entitled Anatomy of a Life. For readers who may feel stuck in fear or worry related to identification with the body-mind perspective, I hope the poem will help you turn within and glimpse your true Self, waiting to be recognized.

***

Anatomy of a Life

Neither in embryo do we begin,
Nor in dark grave do we end;
For we, Spirit--eternal, are but visitors here,
With soul and flesh to blend.
For three score ten, or more or less,
We breathe, we eat,
We taste, we touch,
We hear and smell and see;
And for a time unknown our hearts keep beat
To the rhythm of Mortality, that ghost of human destiny.
Throughout this mortal maze of Maya,
We dream, we scheme,
We plot, we plan,
Conceiving this and creating that
While holding a secret prayer in our heart
To learn our reason for Being,
To have our deepest thirst quenched.
Toward that goal,
We clutch to the glorious, sustaining hope
That this—this burning bridge of human trials and triumphs—
Will have mattered, held importance, or made a difference.
When Truth is known, we glimpse Eternity
And realize we are not who we’ve assumed ourselves to be.
We are God incarnate, and our character but a phantom of mind.
Having tread upon the dust of our ancestors,
We come and, inevitably, go.
Loving, lusting,
Laughing, crying,
Reaching, raging,
We have only dreamed this human time.
Such is the grandest mystery yet,
From first sunrise, beyond last sunset.

- R. Arthur Russell -

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Self–Capital “S”

The Self that I’m referring to in the title of this article, as you have probably noticed, is One with a capital “S.” It is the Self that is routinely overshadowed by the majority of persons, who–due to innocent ignorance–blindly accept that their identity is name and form…only. All of us are very familiar with the lowercase self; but most are unaware that it is a conceptual self only, that seems to reside within the head or behind the chest. It is illusory through and through; at best, a ghost seeking pleasure and the avoidance of pain; at worst, a thief that is robbing us of the true joy which is our birthright. It is my fervent desire to help you become knowingly acquainted with uppercase “Self” via the publishing of this article. Let’s begin with the following thought-provoking quote from Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, from his spiritual classic I Am That:

“To be a person is to be asleep.”

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, “I Am That.”

“So, Mr. Russell (writer guy), what the heck are you talking about?” For many, the notion of investigating the nature of our Being may seem a very boring, and unnecessary, subject matter; but such is not the case. It is one of the most exciting journeys that we may ever undertake. There is good reason why the Temple of Apollo at Delphi, Greece, was inscribed with the words “Know Thyself.” That culture realized that recognition (to know again) of true Self was the way to transcend the slings and arrows (thanks, Shakespeare) that accompany the apparent daily life of a person. Most of us are very familiar with the polar swings between happiness and unhappiness. In spiritual terms, such is often referred to as a brittle happiness, for it is dependent on outer causes and, thus, easily broken. When we discover Self–capital “S,” we transcend our belief in the false self and, thus, are at peace.

Now it’s time for logic, which may ignite a spark of curiosity. Please contemplate this: Can you really–actually–be your name? Can you get burned from the word fire? Can you get wet from the word water? If you’ve been able to answer “no” to both of those questions, you’ve realized that the word is only a term by which we refer to the real items; in this case fire and water. Now, if you apply that very same logic to the case of your name (insert it here), you’ll realize that you cannot possibly be your name. Surely, then, this will naturally cause the question (“Who Am I?”) to arise within you.

Time for more logic: When persons clearly understand that they cannot possibly be their name, most will quite naturally assume that they must be their body. This assumption proves, once again, to relate to a fleeting ghost of a thing;” for the body is changing–literally–from one split trillionth of a second to the next. How can such a changeful thing (which is actually a functioning of Infinite Living Mind) be me? The answer: It cannot. “But,” you may claim, “I feel so real, within; then, I must be my mind.” This also proves to be a very fleeting identity; for our thoughts, which seem so personal, are changeful, too. The “personality” may seem stable, especially if we see evidence of such; but it’s actually fabricated by discrete flashes of intelligence, memory, and a repeated claiming of “i”. There’s no long-lasting person independent of mind. How could there be when mind is the creator of everything?

Doubt can be a powerful motivator to help lead us toward Truth. For as long as we stay stubbornly rooted in our opinions (which are highly subject to change from person, place, or time), we have not opened our minds to experiencing the Truth of our Being. Let doubt serve you in this article. Let doubt cast a shadow over the false self, which the majority believe themselves to be. By turning your attention from the apparent outer world, to the still world within, you’ll discover that there is a deeper dimension of “You” that has been awaiting recognition. That is the Changeless, the Eternal, the Immortal Self–capital “S.” We are Spirit. “O Death, where is thy sting?”

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Baby Jane

Still in hospital, John and Joanne Doe were beaming–how proud they were to hold Baby “Jane,” their first child. Weighing in at 6 lbs, 7 ounces, Baby Jane had finally–a week overdue–made her way into the “world.” John was praising “mom” up and down for her fine efforts; for the delivery had been long and exhausting. Grandparents, friends, and other visitors, as permitted, came to congratulate the young couple and sneak a peek at their new family member. Even before she was born, Baby Jane was absorbing all of the information like a little pink sponge.

Days, weeks, and months passed, with mom and dad learning new skills as time went by. There were the nighttime feedings, the changing of diapers, bath-time rituals, and new equipment to be mastered in the rearing of their child. Baby Jane was a trooper; she slept soundly, wet the correct amount of diapers, and gained the weight that informed mom and dad that all was well. After a few months, Baby Jane slept less, focused her attention, and even smiled; and in those weeks, mom, dad, and grandparents–so eager and conscientious–informed Baby Jane that she was her body and her name. They wanted her to learn the truth; to know who she was and help her to be able to navigate this world. Through it all, Baby Jane cooed and seemed content; but within (at the deepest level of her Being), she desperately wanted to tell good ol’ mom and dad a thing or two about Truth. Trouble was, she as yet did not possess the necessary physical or mental equipment to be able to do so. If she had, she would have told them the following:

***

“Dear Sweet but Naïve Parents,

I know that you mean well, but you’re both ill informed and sadly out of touch with Reality, aka Truth. Although you claim that I am your physical baby, and both of you my parents, I am actually a spiritual child of God, the Christ incarnate. I don’t mean to offend, but neither of you (nor any other human, for that matter) possesses the ability or intelligence to make flesh and bones spring to life. Just so you know, as case in point, I saw dad grimace as he struggled to remove the lid of the pickle jar the other night; how I wanted to offer advice that would have helped!

It is true that you were both apparently involved in the act of procreation; but only God, my Maker, knows how to make one of me. Both of you are also spiritual children of God; but your forgetfulness (which is a necessary part of being born to the human realm) is still upon you; that’s quite evident by the way you react to human situations. It may require a great deal more of samsara (cycle of death and rebirth to which life in the material realm is bound) before the Truth of your Being is revealed to you. Don’t dismay; just trust God and know that I’m rooting for you!

I hope that you won’t be hurt by what I’m about to tell you; but when you tell me that I am “Jane Doe,” I inwardly cringe; for I still–intuitively–know in my heart that I cannot possibly be a name. A name is just a word for that to which it refers. Due to your innocent ignorance, you mistake my apparent body-mind for the sum total of my Being! Please investigate the nature of your true Self, my dear spiritual brother and sister, before your bodies expire. Have you never wondered why William Shakespeare stated that a rose by any other name would smell as sweet? Bill (as I like to call him) knew–God love him!–that the name should never be mistaken as the thing. You would both benefit from spending less time in front of the television, and more reading good books. Perhaps you could begin with The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, the great Lebanese-American writer. Here’s one of his stanzas about children:

"Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you.
And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you."

Okay, so it’s getting late, and bedtime approaches. I know that you’ll be tucking me in soon, changing my diaper (thank God!), and singing those lovely lullaby songs. How I wish that I could tell you now–this very moment–the Truth regarding your essential nature. Buddha called this world dukkha, a term which basically translates as suffering. Both of you have lived long enough to know what I’m talking about–one moment you’re on top of the world; the next you feel as though you’re plummeting toward the abyss. Earth is a polar environment of apparent opposites. As a result, humans spend their lives ping-ponging between pain and pleasure. The Source of the happiness you seek can only be found through recognition of true Self. Anyway, that’s all I’ve got to share with you for now. I know that you’re doing the best that you can, given the circumstance. Just easy on the “Jane” story, okay? Oh, and remember to powder when you change me–keeps rash to a minimum. Love you!”

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

A Frog By Any Name

Once upon a pond named Earth, there lived a male frog. If viewed by us, frog might have been described as big and green and slippery-skinned; but to the frog, he was only is-ness. Frog was quite oblivious to the world around him. He gave no thought to yesterday or tomorrow; for frog knew not the silliness of humankind. Every day was a new and daring adventure. When nature decreed, he would do leap-laps around the perimeter of the pond, lazily swim out to the submerged log on the other shore, or perch upon one of the big rocks that surrounded the pond and cribbet frog opera just for the sheer love of it. Frog didn’t know a lick of Italian, but he never judged the quality of his croak-singing against any other frogs’ musical efforts–such would never have occurred to him. Frog flelt at home in the pond because is-ness allowed him to instinctively know he was an integral part of the world as a whole. But then…

***

One day, “thought” entered the still voidness of frog’s consciousness and whispered “you should give yourself a name.” At first, frog was befuddled, hearing that little voice within his head; but the more frog listened to thought, the more he liked the idea. “Yes,” he thought, “I shall name myself–a name befitting a frog of my grand status within the pond.” Initially, frog was tempted to use alliteration, thinking that names beginning with an F might be quite appealing. For one full day, he mulled over names such as Freddy, Franklin, and Fernando; but frog finally settled on naming himself Ralph Lauren–no relation to the designer. Once he had chosen the name, frog sensed pride rise within himself; he felt as though he was wearing a king’s crown as he stepped smartly around the pond. Now he was a “somebody.”

As life would have it, within a few days Ralph Lauren caught the protruding eye of one of the lovely lady frogs that inhabited the pond. When Ralph Lauren noticed, he played it cool, very cool. In response to the voice in his head (which said, “Damn it frog, stand up straight and look your best!”), he stood up on his hind legs, squared back his shoulders, and puffed up his chest. To top it off, he nonchalantly smiled his “I’m-the-frog” smile and snagged a fly in mid flight without even looking. Lady frog, who was quite impressed, smiled back; and Ralph felt his heartbeat quicken. The voice in his head was very happy, indeed.

Within a few days, Ralph and lady frog arranged to go out on a date. They would have dinner on one of the lily pads with a view. In preparation, Ralph paid a visit to a local apparel shop not far from the pond. After much deliberation, and a silent “yes” from the voice within his head, Ralph selected a tuxedo–basic black, notch lapels, french cuffs, and silk pant stripe. Oh, how Ralph smiled as he strode from the shop, the tuxedo within a clothing bag over his shoulder. He was feeling on top of the world, and he was going to look oh-so-fine on the date!

The date, unfortunately, did not go as planned. When Ralph Lauren rang the doorbell at lady frog’s pad, she opened the door, took one look at his finery, and laughed him off her front stoop. “You think I’m going to go out with you if you’re wearing that!” she exclaimed. “What kind of frog wears a tuxedo to dinner?!” Dejected, Ralph Lauren turned and plodded home. All night long, the voice in his head tortured him. “If only I’d chosen a white suit,” he thought, “everything would have turned out fine.” Life had once seemed so easy; but Ralph was now miserable due to the endless commentary by the voice in his head. How Ralph yearned for the days when he was a nobody singing opera on the big rock at the pond.

In the following weeks, Ralph Lauren visited a local frog psychiatrist, who, after numerous sessions, diagnosed Ralph as displaying human-like behaviour, proclaimed him neurotic, and prescribed anti-anxiety medication, which he still takes to this day. The psychiatrist also advised Ralph to continue their appointments indefinitely. In an effort to alleviate his suffering, Ralph is currently seeking a guru to help guide him back to recognition of his true Nature–That–and the blissful life he knew before “thought-in-the-head” convinced him to believe that he could ever be anything other than what he is already. As of last report, frog had dropped the moniker of Ralph Lauren, preferring to simplify his life as much as possible. Be forewarned, folks. Could it happen to “you?” Special note: “Lady frog” soonafter shacked up with an old toad with a criminal background, and she’s put on a lot of weight. “Thought-in-the-head” would be happy.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

The Master Key

A “master key,” as defined by Merriam-Webster Dictionary, is as follows: “a key designed to open several different locks.” In the ordinary sense of the word, we might imagine someone–perhaps a landlord–who, in an emergency, might need to gain access to various apartments. In this article, however, we’re interested in the extraordinary–the meaning that can help us recognize true Self and, thus, unlock esoteric powers to co-create that are not in the domain of those who still assume they are the persons they’ve been conditioned to believe themselves to be. Accompany me, if you will, as we journey toward a deeper understanding of master key:

***

The Master Key System by Charles F. Haanel (who was a successful businessman and new thought author and teacher) is a foundational book for anyone with a keen interest in the Law of Attraction. To the uninitiated, it may not seem an easy read; but it is definitely a worthwhile read, for the teachings contained within its pages are unparalleled. Originally published in 1912 as a correspondence course for those interested in the study of new thought, it was first published as a book in 1916. It begins as follows: “It is my privilege to enclose herewith Part One of the Master Key System. Would you bring into your life more power? Get the power consciousness. More health? Get the health consciousness. More happiness? Get the happiness consciousness. Live the spirit of these things until they become yours by right. It will then become impossible to keep them from you. The things of the world are fluid to a power within man by which he rules them.”

Those of you who–believing yourself to the sum total of body-mind–may now be tempted to throw up your hands in frustration and shout “lunacy”–or worse! But if you’re keenly interested in manifesting a more successful life, you may be curious enough to keep reading. What Haanel was stating is the same truth that all successful motivational speakers still inform us of today: If we desire to change what “appears” without (the phenomenal world), we absolutely must–FIRST– change our paradigms within. A paradigm (again, courtesy of Merriam-Webster Dictionary) is defined as follows: “example, pattern; an outstandingly clear or typical example or archetype.” With regard to deliberate manifestation, we might consider our paradigms to be a set of closely-held subconscious beliefs related to every aspect of our apparent life.

Key to understanding this subject matter on a deeper level is this: We can only manifest that with which we are in harmony. Meaning: We’ve got to be it (our desire) before we can see it. If we’re telling ourselves that we’re financially rich but still embracing a poverty mindset (as evidenced by our shopping patterns and the words that we speak–“I can’t afford that!”), we have more work to do with regard to changing our paradigms. There are various ways to change our paradigms, but repetition of new beliefs (stated in the affirmative, present tense: “I Am rich,”–not “I Am not poor.”) is the most powerful. In conjunction with putting the mind to work, we must also put our Awareness to work; for Awareness is the guardian at the gate of our mind. Through Awareness, we govern what we permit access into our mind and that which we don’t. Please remember this: What is habitually impressed upon the mind will be expressed as our “reality.”

From the time that we were young children, all of us mentally absorbed the habitual beliefs of our parents, neighbours, and persons in positions of authority. We had little choice to do otherwise; for our persona (which would become more apparent later) had not fully developed its right to govern what information to believe or disbelieve with regard to the world. Thus, if our parents believed that money was hard to come by, such also became our belief. If they habitually spoke of apparent lack, limitation, and disease, we naturally assimilated their negative paradigms unless those beliefs were challenged as “untrue” by persons with greater influence and more positive worldviews.

I offer now a couple passages from the Bible, which I believe have the power to help you manifest that which you desire. The first is from Mark 11:24: “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” We must claim that our desires have already been fulfilled NOW–not that they will be in the future (which is non-existent). The second is from Job 22:28: “Thou shalt also decree a thing, and it shall be established unto thee: and the light shall shine upon thy ways.” It’s important to understand that the apparent “reality” we sense is rendered by the mind–only. As Paramahansa Yogananda stated in The Law of Success, “Mind is the creator of everything.” We’ve all been programmed to believe that we are the body-mind (aka person) and that we must work–very hard, indeed–to achieve what we desire. However, we are not now, nor were we ever, the doer. Mind is the doer. We are living Spirit, witnessing an apparently human experience in the Waking State.

Not by accident (for there truly are none), I selected a photo that has a heart-shaped lock within it to accompany this article. The heart represents an important ingredient toward successful manifestation. We must feel the truth of our affirmations (against all logical protests from the little “i”) if our desires are ever to manifest. Time spent in meditation is beneficial on two counts: It helps us become acquainted with true Self (the silent witness), and we can also use the quiet solitude to visualize the end results that we desire. If doing so, it’s important to visualize yourself from the perspective of your desire fulfilled. To do so sends a very clear paradigm to The Universe, which, according to spiritual law, must manifest.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

A Coin So Thin

The Law of Attraction–always functioning, ever present, one-hundred percent of the time. What we think about, we bring about. Due to it, we’re able to co-create in accordance with the habitual feeling-imbued thoughts with which we resonate and evolve on our paths toward the expression of higher consciousness. With that in mind, let’s examine the title of this post in more detail.

Most of us may be familiar with the custom of tossing a coin to make a determination. It might have played out as follows: A coin is selected and both sides–Heads and Tails–are shownA spokesperson for all involved–perhaps two teams of children–states his/her choice and waits for the coin to be tossed into the air. Then everyone watches. The coin is caught and slapped onto the back of the tosser’s other hand. The covering hand is lifted, revealing the verdict. It’s simple: Heads you win; Tails you lose: The team that called it goes first, or plays from a certain end. How that coin toss applies to the Law of Attraction is found through a saying of mine: You can never slice a coin so thin that it will not have two sides. Please read that again and contemplate the subject. What do I mean?

Based on the circumstances that we witness, it can often be easy to assume that Life is dividing us into categories, in much the same way as the coin toss. On one side, Heads, we may mistakenly believe that only winners are allowed. They will be the rich, the famous, the ones with the great career, great family, and great health. On the other side, Tails, we may mistakenly believe that only losers are found. They will be the poor, the downtrodden, the ones with minimum wage jobs, dysfunctional families, and poor health. In this article, we’re going to challenge that belief through the Principle of Polarity, which is discussed in a book of esoteric teachings entitled The Kybalion.

All of us are quite aware of opposites: Light and dark; up and down; right and left. The Kybalion informs us that both (although apparently opposites) are actually just poles, or extremes, of one thing. In the matter of Hot and Cold, no one can state where hot begins and cold ends, for both are merely differing degrees of the one. So, how does this mystical teaching apply to our lives? It means that if we are experiencing the negative end (or pole) of any situation, we should mentally begin to slide our attitude toward the other pole. This would be accomplished through deliberate and conscious mental effort. Using my example of the coin, we should figuratively toss the coin again–seeking the good that absolutely must be there! If a situation seems unfavourable, toss the coin again!Please contemplate the following: The Head side of the coin cannot exist–literally–without the Tails! In time, as we mature as co-creators, we realize that we (via our thinking) possess both sides of the coin about anything. The coin is always our coin–both sides! Each and every time, we may choose to toss the coin again and discover the good that inherently must exist.

This is not an exercise in trite sayings. This is fact. We are the ones having our life experiences, and we are the ones labeling them. I am not saying that challenging life situations will never occur; for they do. I am saying, however, that in every situation we may toss the coin again (applying The Principle of Polarity) and discover the other side of the coin. On a grander scale, we may come to realize that situations once labeled “bad” were actually blessings in disguise. Through conscious use of our creative abilities, we’ll come to understand that we have always held both sides of the coin; and that we can toss it again whenever we please. We can change ourselves–our attitude, our thinking–and thereby attract to us accordingly. If you’re going through a rough time, perhaps it’s time to toss that coin again and discover the positive side.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Rising Out of Ignorance

low angle grayscale photo of empty brick stairs
Photo by Ravi Kant on Pexels.com

This article’s title may raise some eyebrows or perhaps some snickers. And such is understandable. On personal levels (which means relative levels), opinions are bound to differ–that’s just the way of life in this environment. During the course of our human story, we have developed a persona–the mask; and due to that mask, which is formed from a collection of thoughts, beliefs, and apparent experiences, each and every person interprets the world in a fully subjective manner. To some readers, the title might suggest that I am now claiming to be a genius; that my days of being stupid, acting foolish, or exhibiting illogical behavour are over. Alas (now, there’s an old word), that is not the case; at least when “Art” is around. I am happy to announce, however, that my once abundant ignorance has at least decreased.

“Art,” the character, has been experiencing the pain of his issues for quite an apparent time; but perhaps enough karmic debt has been paid that Grace could lead the way to liberation. On most days, “I”–Awareness–no longer view the world through Art’s hazel eyes; nor do I see the world through his well-intentioned, although ignorant, perspective or deeply-rooted opinions. I have learned that there is much lighter way to approach life and the phenomenal world. To do so is to look from a perspective that is above and beyond the earthly character that the majority of persons still believe themselves to be. This is the ignorance to which the title refers.

It’s in our nature to rise; for indeed we were cast out from the Most High to experience Itself in a multitude of forms. This time, we chose–or were indebted–to play the role of human. A basic spiritual principle of rhythm rules: The swing of the pendulum to the left is equal to the swing to the right. Thus, we will–in due time–rise once again to the level from which we were originally cast out. Such is inevitable. As we rise, it’s important to remember the following: It makes no sense whatsoever to blame ourselves for actions committed by the little self that was apparently mired in ignorance. Such could have not been different. It’s perfectly understandable that all of us–believing ourselves to be body-mind only–apparently acted from that perspective. How could we have done otherwise? To tell someone not to act stupid or foolish–or from a point of arrogance, ignorance, or human pride–is like demanding that someone (with no knowledge of rocket engineering) build us a rocket ship to go to the moon.

How may we rise out of ignorance? From my understanding, there is one key method: meditation; be still. It is erroneous to believe that we may rise out of ignorance by merely acquiring more knowledge; for the human perspective is relative. From that vantage point, what is right or wrong, correct or incorrect, is forever changing. However, when we still our minds, doing so silences the false self (the little “i”) long enough to allow the Source of All Knowing to be directly realized.

So what does rising out of ignorance feel like? It may be described in one word: Bliss, aka peace. To rise is to be released from the constrictive limitations of the human perspective into the expansive domain of Spirit. To rise is to discard the human perspective as though it were a worn-out set of clothes. To rise is to stand apart–and watch–as the ego that was once believed to be “you” is seen for what it is. That false self, which still may occasionally try to yank us back down into ignorance, can now be witnessed from afar. To rise also allows us to look upon others, who are experiencing their own karmic debt, with a heart filled with loving compassion. Through greater understanding, we come to realize that to transition from person to Presence is part of our apparent journey. There’s much higher to rise–much higher; for to pretend to have arrived at a point of All Knowing would only be to proclaim our ignorance!  If we are wise, we won’t be tempted to look down. A little understanding goes a long way.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

God Trumps All

God–not the word, nor the concept–trumps all. How can this possibly be, when humankind seems so very powerful? Because God (also referred to as Consciousness), is all that there IS. It is One, indivisible, irreducible, unchanging; the Alpha and Omega of all that ever was, is, and will be. It is the Ultimate Frame within which we–as apparent human beings–live. It is That, appearing as a multiplicity and diversity of shapes, forms, and colours, which we classify according to name. From the finite view of “the world,” we may appear to have dominion over all of the Earth; while from the Infinite persepctive (which is the viewpoint of Truth), humans are little more than phantasmagorical phenomena within the Waking State of God’s Infinite Dream–dream bodies, relating their supposedly important tales of triumph or tragedy to other dream bodies.

To understand this more deeply (for those earnestly curious about Truth, or weary of suffering their apparent person) requires that we set aside our erroneous assumptions–of which there is great abundance. We must set aside everything we have been told about the nature of our being and dive deep–beyond appearance–to discover the Truth within. In short, we are not “who we think we are.” The Consciousness through which, and by which, the words of this webpage are comprehended does not arise within the body-mind. Consciousness is not personal! Only Consciousness, Itself, is conscious. Such only seems to be the case due to reflected consciousness within the dream of our life.

We–as name and form–do not truly exist. It is more truthfully expressed that we appear. To believe that we have independent existence as physical bodies which somehow magically give rise to personal consciousness is an erroneous positionality–one untenable through investigation. Science confirms this (see “the hard problem of consciousness”). What we sense, including our body-minds, are but effects of Consciousness–erroneously claimed to think and act by their own power. To believe such is unawareness of Truth; for only in Him do we live and move and have our being. Our body-minds, which arise simultaneously with the world in which they interact, are actually discrete momentary manifestations successively related together so quickly as to appear “solid” and “seamless.” So it is, also, with the apparently personal “i” (the ego-thought), which is nothing more than repetitive “i-thoughts” that lead us–via memory–to assume there is an actual somebody within the head. To believe so is to attribute the flashing moment-to-moment experience of God’s Infinite Dream as actual “matter.” Quantum Mechanics has long postulated the Observer Effect, which is basically stated in the following passage from The Tibetan Book of the Dead: “Phenomena only ‘exist’ in the mind that perceives them.”

The process (not truly a process, for there is nothing we must do to be what we are) of recognizing true Self–a child of God–is simple enough; it involves surrendering all that is false. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry summed this up through the following quote: “Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” God IS that perfection; and we come closer to That when we drop our concepts related to a fictional entity. Come with me now, if you will, and re-understand your true Being from the point of young child–long before you were educated in the falsities so prevalent in this realm called Earth. Know that your body is just that–a flashing appearance in consciousness; your mind but sensations, images, feelings, and thoughts appearing–likewise–to the true “You,” Consciousness. Spill out your stories related to i, me, and mine; and, through the ensuing emptiness, rediscover your-Self filled with the power and the glory of all that you Are. You are not now–nor were you ever–the body-mind. You are Consciousness, silently witnessing and co-creating the dream of your life. Why let the concept of what you are “not” prevent you from directly knowing what you already are–Consciousness, Love…here and now.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers