Time To Be Still

In the folly of my teenage years, I had a default coping strategy which, although not actually acted upon, most likely set the stage for some problematic years and experiences. Whenever a troubling circumstance or situation felt beyond my skill set, I would visualize running as fast as I could and jumping a freight train. Where was the train headed? In my adolescent mind, the answer was always: “Wherever I could escape having to experience the damned feelings running through me.” The great flaw in this strategy, of course, is that wherever you go, there you are. To run, run, run, run-runaway makes no sense at all. Neither, truly, does anger, when it is a means of coping with fear.

Although I stopped visualizing jumping a freight train to escape uncomfortable or fearful situations many years ago, my childish strategy for dealing with the stresses of life may have covertly morphed into other mechanisms (such as distraction, or a bull-dog “let’s-make-this-right” attitude) that are also ineffective at dealing with the root of the issues. In the first, we’re basically ignoring the hurt through redirection of our attention; in the second, we’re putting our shoulder against the world and expecting it to move. The main point is that unfelt issues related to the human experience–such as loss, embarrassment, guilt, shame, regret, grief, loneliness, ridicule, resentment, and fear–are potentially going to turn around and bite us where it hurts unless we acknowledge them at the time…and feel them. The following are examples of situations that might give rise to uncomfortable feelings:

  • What does it feel like to lose a loved one?
  • What does it feel like to experience sudden divorce?
  • What does it feel like to be given a life-changing diagnosis?
  • What does it feel like to be faced with homelessness?
  • What does it feel like to be forced to change careers midlife?
  • What does it feel like to be estranged from family members?
  • What does it feel like to have high expenses and low income?

This strategy related to feeling is not intended to bog us down in self pity or remorse. Its effect is actually the opposite–to liberate us. By feeling what needs to be felt, we gain greater clarity of perspective and allow ourselves to positively move forward. I believe that the following quote from Joseph Campbell expresses the best potential result:

The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.”

By simply being with our fears (and, as a dear friend suggested, even welcoming them), we disarm so many of their negative effects. When we take time to be (with the good, the bad, and the ugly), we allow their energies to be felt and accepted. Our intention is not to judge anything; for this is the grand territory of Isness, not the petty place of rightness or wrongness. From the vantage point of Being, we realize that nothing can truly harm us. We are not our stories of triumph or tragedy; nor are we the character playing the starring role in our life movie. Fear, when faced, loses so much of its imagined power.

In my life story, I have come a long apparent way. No longer am I seeking to run away from my fears on a freight train headed for who knows where. Now, I’m willing to sit with what frightens me–including sides of my personality that are less than perfect, and circumstances that feel uncomfortable. This, I believe, is opening me to all of the incredible goodness that this life has to offer. May such also happen for you.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Mining Gold

The Gold to which I refer within the content of this article is not the type found as shiny nuggets panned from streams; nor is it the kind that is bound in ore at great depths within the earth. To mine this nature of Gold, drilling rigs, dynamite, and mammoth mining trucks are not required. The Gold of which I write is Spiritual Gold, and It is closer than your breath. It is the MOST precious non-thing, never found via the senses.

The following information will be useful to help us set up our mining operation. In spiritual circles, our shared Oneness is often analogously referred to as Gold. We, as humans of various shapes, sizes, and colours, are likened to articles of golden jewelry such as rings, bracelets, or necklaces. Through this analogy, we understand that at the core, all of the articles of jewelry are, in essence, gold. This principle also applies to humankind; for at the Core, all of us are fashioned from, and known by Awareness. In spiritual terms, we refer to It as God; in scientific terms, we refer to It as the Unified Field; and we informally refer to It as “I Am.”

To understand our essential nature more deeply, it’s important that we realize that Awareness knows Itself, through Itself. It is knowingly self aware of Its own nature. It’s essential nature is creative. Out of the One Spiritual Gold, all forms that are known, including the world and our body-minds, are made. Logically, therefore, each and every one of “us” must intrinsically possess a shining nugget of Goldness within. It could be no other way. It is this one-and-only Gold that I devote the contents of this article.

For reasons which may only be surmised, the majority of modern cultures have attempted to hide the realization of our Goldness from humankind. To whatever degree that this may be so, the good news is that our nugget of Gold is the one non-thing that can never be stripped from us–it is our Golden birth right. For periods of time, we may be confused about our essential nature; but we can never actually be other than That which we are.

To mine our spiritual Gold within, it’s imperative that we realize that no amount of data collecting or soil sampling about our essential nature (books, religious services, spiritual retreats, online presentations) can ever replace leaning into our shovels and digging into the very nature of our Being. Daily meditation is the tool that we use to spiritually mine (recognize) our nugget of gold within. When we shovel away the overburden (that which is not our essential nature; i.e., name, form, title, status, nationality, race, etc), the nugget of gold is directly revealed.

To recognize the nugget of gold, we must turn our attention within and merge with IT.

One of the greatest consequences of knowingly mining our Gold (God) within us, is that the world and everyone benefits by this recognition. When we raise God from the depths of our Being to the surface of our daily interactions, everyone’s life is enriched. The world, and our experience of it, is quite literally transformed. Selfishness is displaced by Godly selflessness. Base human traits are displaced by the genuine love of the Creator. Due to our rich discovery, we may now see and appreciate the Gold that is shining through and from everyone and everything. Perhaps it’s time to consider setting up your own Gold mining camp, Here and Now.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. (F. A.) 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Standing “As”

This world can seem a battlefield of challenges and strife. On a daily basis, we directly view or hear reports of varying degrees of conflict. Everyone has preferences: we desire this, but not that. As the number of so-called “others” increases, the issue becomes more complex. Our differing opinions regarding right and wrong leave us with little or no middle ground labelled “Peace.” During such times, it can be challenging to resist the temptation of being “against” a circumstance, rather than having the wisdom of being “for” what feels right in our heart. This metaphysical principle of behaviour (which I refer to as Standing “As”) is vitally important to understand: That to which we give our attention persists more strongly. To improve conditions, we must resolutely place our attention on that which we desire, not its apparent opposite. Let’s imagine, if we can, a peaceful world in which we live by the following:

  • Can we stand “as” tolerance, without being against intolerance?
  • Can we stand “as” honesty, without being against dishonesty?
  • Can we stand “as” selflessness, without being against selfishness?
  • Can we stand “as” equality, without being against inequality?
  • Can we stand “as” honour, without being against corruption?
  • Can we stand “as” love, without giving your energy to hate?
  • Can we stand “as” peace, without being against war?
  • In short, can we stand for the result we desire, rather than expending our energy by being against its opposite?”

Through the development of our character, we may exemplify the beliefs that we hold most dear, without becoming self-important or proud. This is clearly illustrated in a famous poem entitled Sermons We See, by Edgar Guest. Here I offer the first stanza:

I’d rather see a sermon than hear one any day; 
I’d rather one should walk with me than merely tell the way. 
The eye’s a better pupil and more willing than the ear, 
Fine counsel is confusing, but example’s always clear; 
And the best of all the preachers are the men who live their creeds, 
For to see good put in action is what everybody needs
.

Mahatma Ghandi also expressed this vitally important principle in his famous and succint expression:

Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”

Perhaps we could develop the habit of asking ourselves, “What attitude am I broadcasting to the world today?” It’s up to us to ensure it’s a good one, born of our highest ideals.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

“Job, Well Done”

Humankind has it backwards. The trouble is, it thinks it’s doing a good job. All of our human mistakes occur–and continue to reoccur–for two basic reasons: 1. We’re unaware that we unaware we’re making them. 2. The majority of humans are unaware of their higher nature. Due to our ignorance (defined as: lacking wisdom or knowledge), humankind is constrained to act in accordance with ways that it thinks are best. However, to produce the best results, it’s not enough to embody the best that we think we can be; in daily living we must express “Being” the best that we are. Only when we awaken to the Truth of our essential nature will our results reflect our inner Greatness.

If we allow ourselves to be governed by the finite mind of humankind, the work that we think we can do will always be somewhat stained by self-centered motives. Such means that no matter how good our intentions, we will still be ruled to a certain degree by human instincts and drive. No doubt, there is much goodness in human potential; but that is not enough. Only when we knowingly live from our Being will we create the best-of-the-best conditions on earth. The following illustrates the difference:

If I allow Art to perform what he (the false self) desires to express,

the work, even if only faintly, will bear the stamp of getting.

In other words, there will still be self-interest of the little “me.”

Conversely:

If the Spirit of Infinite Living Mind (the true Self) expresses Itself through Art,

the work will bear the stamp of giving.

This means that everyone potentially gains.

In the first example, we can see that the work will still contain what’s in the best interest of Art. However, when we live and move and have our Being in accordance with the second example, we–in human form–become a conduit to the expression of Divine Greatness. Deep down, all of us know when we’re living according to the second way; for there is not a hint of self-centeredness within the work.

At this point in human evolution, the majority of us are habitually expressing our finite humanity. Why? Because we’ve been conditioned to believe that we are mere flesh and bones. Our results will dramatically improve when we fully express our Infinite Divinity. When we habitually express That, which is Infinite in potential, and Glorious in actuality, then–and only then–will our work bear proof that we have knowingly climbed to the peak of our Being. We will then be able to look one another lovingly in the eyes and truthfully say, “Job, well done.”

Dare to Dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

I’ll Be With You…

Most of us are familiar with the saying, “I’ll be with you in a moment.” We have probably heard it or even used it ourselves. It’s often stated in polite conversation, to indicate that there will be a short delay before an intended interaction will occur. In the majority of cases, it is uttered perfunctorily; in much the same way that an empty glass is handed to someone who is thirsty for water. If we care about the depth of our communication (and I hope that we do), we would be wise to contemplate the deeper meaning of the expression.

In the deepest sense of the saying, it’s actually impossible to “be” with someone in a moment. By the most literal interpretation, Being only occurs in the eternal and timeless NOW. To accept anything less, means that we are dealing with the concept of time and, thus, interactions between conceptual selves. What this basically means is that my thought of “me” is dealing your thought of “you.” While this may seem to be of trifling consequence, I assure you it is not.

To the degree that the interpretation of the expression differs, the communication between persons is highly vulnerable to conflict or misinterpretation. Why? Because the definition of a “moment” is subject to various opinions. To one person, a moment is literally one second–one little blip of a digital time piece. To another person, a moment, used offhandedly, might signify a lapse of five or ten minutes. Of course, we’re well aware that all of our words are not interpretted literally; it’s up to us to determine when we are speaking literally or figuratively. A personal best habit, however, would be to choose our words wisely.

The most important point of this article (of truly being present) can be expressed more easily through the following: Have you ever shared the company of someone and asked, or been asked, “Where are you?” If so, you understand that the two persons, although physically close, were dimensions apart. One might have been quite present, awaiting a reply. The other, due to physical fatigue or a busy mind, may have drifted mentally and, thus, not been present. To truly “be” with someone (in various situations, as deemed socially appropriate), we must meet them at the level of heart. In this placeless place of sympathetic resonance, words and actions do not occur.

If we desire to truly share openly and honestly with other dear souls who are taking this apparent journey called “life,” we owe it to ourselves and them to be “here” with them NOW. To do so requires that we get out of our busy mind and be present: such is the price of admission to real, meaningful communication. In time, everyone is being defrauded, in varying degrees. When we, as Presence, are there for “others,” we also benefit; for this means that we’re not functioning on behalf of the “voice in the head” that claims to be our real identity. With regard to issues that really matter, to settle for anything less than heart-based communication is to offer an empty glass.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Sneaking Past God

When Troy Hooliman was six, his parents told him that God was always watching and that he should, therefore, always try to do his best. They assured him that if he did, his life would flow more smoothly. After hearing this news, Troy had at first been so frightened that he strictly toed the line. About two years later, however, he accidentally pocketed a toy from a department store–and guess what? Nothing happened. A wrathful God didn’t appear in the sky and wag a finger at him; and he wasn’t suddenly zapped by a bolt of lightning. Troy, thus, concluded that God didn’t really exist or that he had been able to sneak one past Him/Her. This lone incident led to a few more “found” toys being stashed for safe keeping under his bed.

In the case of Troy’s life, it definitely seemed true that one action leads to another. When he entered the dating arena in his late teens, he gave little or no thought about lying to Angie, the first girl that he knew physically. She desperately believed that she loved him; and he, in an effort to get what he desired, simply lied. He rationalized that no real harm was being done. This again proved to him that he had sneaked one past God without getting caught. Therefore, it didn’t seem to matter when he also lied to the second, third, and fourth girlfriends he dated.

Years later, in business, Troy repeatedly proved that his parents didn’t have a clue, at least with regard to how the “real” world operated. In his business, which was oriented to sales, sneaking past God was the order of the day. Lies abounded; and ethics proved empty of any real meaning. He rationalized that everyone realized this and secretly played by the rules of deceit. The world in which he functioned was competitive by nature; you were either a big dog who got the treat, or the small dog who got eaten.

All apparently went well for Troy…until it didn’t. In his mid forties, hard times came in his personal and professional life, accompanied by grief and a steep learning curve that left him desperate for answers.

***

What Troy didn’t realize was that the true Knower of “his” experience wasn’t a little “him” buried somewhere behind his forehead or deep within his chest. “That” which is the real Knower of his experience is actually God, aka Universal Consciousness, Itself. It turns out that there’s a good reason why Source is described as being Omnipresent–because It is! Troy is now learning new and improved ways of being in the world. He’s filled with a positive energy and wishes only to do good. The wonderful lesson he has learned is that the more good that he shares with the world, the more good that returns. Hmmm, someone should write that down somewhere (Galatians 6:7 ring a bell?)

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found through this link. May the content of either or both help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Weight Divine

Here, I offer you one of my recent poems:

***

Dear Father,

How great this weight Divine

–this Love

I bear for thee.

I pray

that it won’t crush me,

before I may share it

with our Family of

One.

***

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found via this link; and my Linkedin profile via this link. May the content help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Sparks Divine

By the rumour mill, I once heard that Earth and its inhabitants went through a period of gross ignorance that was referred to as The Abysmal Years. Greed was rampant; governments–contrary to their public mask of “serve the people”–were rife with corruption and censorship; and every war that ended, inevitably led to the beginning of the next. So-called democracy–at the price of millions of human lives lost, to death or wounds–proclaimed that it would save our world, while hiding its real agenda behind a waving flag.

In personal interactions, the people gorged themselves upon the daily staples of theft, duplicity, and selfishness–these were the groceries of the day. At night, the people prayed for greater skill in their ability to deceive and defraud their neighbours. The majority of persons felt separate from one another; and, thus, they bargained in bad faith to ensure the upper hand. The marketplace and life, itself, were labelled competitive. By popular opinion, it was agreed that only fools would believe that everyone could live creatively and cooperatively; and, thereby, enjoy a more peaceful coexistence.

So accustomed to this way of existing, the majority of the people questioned neither the rightness of it, nor the cost. Before embarking on their daily routines, everyone donned their fake smiles and rehearsed their glad-handing patter. Unaware that there was a better way to live, the people, therefore, taught their children the same through their proud example. Strangely, the people did not consider themselves brutes; by the standard of the times, they, indeed, considered themselves quite civilized. “This” was the way of being during The Abysmal Years.

But then…

In small enlightened gatherings throughout the world, sparks of deeper understanding began to light up. “Must we be this way?” the sparks asked. “Must we cheat and double deal, or could there be another way, a better, Holy way, of living our years? Could we, in knowing ourselves as children of The Divine, honour one another–each no greater, and each no less–and put an end to The Abysmal Years?”

Of course, this is only a story…or is it?

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found via this link; and my Linkedin profile via this link. May the content help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Whisper From The Heart

Burdened by aches

That went bone deep,

The man lifted his head, tears flowing, and sobbed:

“Master, I am so tired of being a slave.

This world lashes me with its pain–

I don’t know how much more I can bear.

Why, Lord, why

Must this world whip me so?

A silky whisper arose in the man’s heart;

And he, feeling a gentle Hand light upon his shoulder, heard:

“Because, dear child,

You know not That which you are.

Whilst you carry the belief

That we are separate,

You will suffer.

Turn within,

And know that we are One.”

***

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found via this link; and my Linkedin profile via this link. May the content help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

Mission I AM Possible

Note: To cue my original no-expenses-spared rendition of the theme music from “Mission I Am Possible, please press here. In this performance, I’ll be whipping up some “music” with spoons–😎. There are still a couple of seats available. Now, let’s begin:

***

Just prior to entering this incarnation, “each” of us might imagine that we were standing on a high diving board, preparing to take another plunge into the realm that is referred to as Earth. Why would we do this time and time again? As a method of refinement. In a manner analogous to rubber automobile tires that pick up bits of gravel, grit, and even nails, human beings pick up the energy of certain tendencies–some that serve ourselves and “others” well; and some that make suffering a certainty, rather than a probability. The trip, in which we actually never go anywhere, allows us to learn what serves a higher ideal, and what belongs to the “person” in the lowlands of Earth.

From my own experience, and knowledge gained from books about spirituality, I believe that the soul (and sole) purpose of our journey–at least from a human perspective–is to find our way back HOME; in other words, to recognize our essential nature. We Are of God; therefore, our essential nature must be God-like. The key challenge that’s related to this purpose relates to dropping, or at least questioning, our murky human assumptions long enough to allow the Light of Truth to shine through. As long as we cling to a false ‘i’-dentity related to name and form, the likelihood of knowing our true nature is slim. Suffering “as” the human is the one natural solution that provides opportunity for expansion out of the prison in which we have figuratively been placed. This is not literally true; but it certainly feels that way.

How will we realize if we’ve arrived at knowing God, our essential nature beyond name and form? Trust me on this, if you will, the “realization” is unmistakable; but don’t expect to see signs of IT as an object. The Bible states this clearly in Luke 17:21: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” Another way of verifying if we have arrived is that most, if not all, of the fear, pride, concern, and arrogance related to performance–for example, of a rendition of Mission I Am Possible–has been jettisoned with the illusory person. This is the meaning behind the well-known, but, perhaps puzzling expression: “to find yourself, you must lose yourself.” When we lay down our false assumption that we can–ever–possibly be the “person,” we open ourselves to recognition of our Oneness. Our mission, should we choose to accept it, is to find That.

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2022 – 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. My YouTube videos may be found via this link; and my Linkedin profile via this link. May the content help you along your spiritual journey. 🙏🧡

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers