How We Become Convinced
As I detail my discovery and extended exploration of the mysteries surrounding our essential being, demonstrating the various methods of ditching the blinders and limitations of any and all belief systems assumed after birth and often inherited from past lives, I often compare my state of being convinced to those of others equally satisfied. The process of becoming convinced continues to fascinate the ‘me’ who finds himself so.
Christians who have become convinced that Jesus is the son of god with no-one else even in the running seem just as comfortable with their certainty as I do with the understanding that god is a consciousness whom one can join but not control or manipulate and certainly not a being with fleshy offshoots. Just how they reach that satisfaction and retain it is a question I have often sought answers to. From whoever is willing to share. Often it seems like a journey of questioning and doubts, sometimes resolved by pastoral counselling and sometimes by a calm acceptance that faith exists to be challenged by doubt and those challenges ultimately serve to fortify that faith. Accepting the will of god, despite anger, resentment and general confusion seems to be the path. And that divine will, however mysterious its methods, remains the trump card in all gambles with fate and risk.
For materialists, atheists, communists the acquisition of the convincing attitude is not much different: the corruption of society at all levels seems all too obvious and the stupidity of religious devotions in the face of famine, plague and war, much of it manipulated by elites for their own profit, undeniable. Accepting the basic decency of man, unsullied by the temptations of elevated status and ruthless competition and using it to build a better, fairer world of equals, seems all too obvious and an eminently workable solution. Their process of being convinced seems to be summed up by the phrase just look around you. In the early, naïve and vigorous days of communism, now portrayed in books and films, the desperation to believe in the myth and that the urge to deny the poisoning of the dream came from within as much as without, is undeniable. It was as, Arthur Koestler phrased it in the collection, the god that died. And we see, as atheists modify their tenacity with their own brand of spiritual meditation, marketing themselves as humanists handling their own moral compasses without the crutches of unquestioning faith and implacable commandments, that their denial can be developed into a force for the good of all, despite the observable historical reality that forces for the good of all have regularly failed miserably in their endeavors, leaving the planet as much the same circus of conflict and resolution as before.
Christians, and most religionists of any persuasion that I have met or read, do not know the how and why of things happening and rarely if ever claim to, often pointing to their acceptance of the divine will and how it will all be explained one day, that one day being a heavenly resurrection when all will be clear and all will be well. And when I see and interact with some of them in that state of resurrection they seem as relieved and gratefully pleased as anyone else, although the clarity of that explanation seems as distant as ever. Their heaven, while blissfully fulfilling, does not really explain the hells from which they may have come.
That such clarity is available now to any who might bravely seek it out by crossing lines and borders that society and congregations might disapprove of appears to be well outside the remit of the prayerful and faithful. They all seem to have been warned of the dangers of personally directed thought and emotion and advised to seek their guidance from the ancient sacred books championed by their shepherds. And as we know there are many hefty texts to be consulted.
Myself, I would rather consult the experiences of spirits now dwelling the spheres, as I have often done myself between bouts in the school of hard knocks, and to which I shall soon return on the next leg of my journey, than any compendium of myths and legends, admittedly poetic and potent metaphors, translated and interpreted by a long line of officially approved patriarchs protecting their positions in the hierarchy of authority. Not that spirits have all the answers. In fact some have only a few, but they emanate from what science is supposed to be based on: empirical data. Spirits can inform you of the life they live now and not the theoretical promises and dire warnings of previous millennia, hell fire and willing virgins being among the first to go. That those spirits appear to live in a variety of purgatories and paradises, only some of which conform to earthly desires and assumptions, should not surprise: this world of problems and suffering which all, despite the protections of wealth and status, come to endure, is composed of a vast variety of landscapes and cultures. The next world merely replicates that variety of individuals and attitudes, while hinting to newcomers the many new freedoms to be tasted and enjoyed.
While millions upon millions live in paradises answering to the dictates of the religion and seem, when I visit, to be as comfortable as those other millions living in paradises not run by the minor deities, prophets and ecclesiastical functionaries finding themselves as useful as before. The mystery of why we are here in the first place continues to absorb many who are not satisfied with joys, pleasures and devotions of the post-mortem life, and often remains unresolved when the individual succumbs to the ambitions of another incarnation.
Just as some sleep through their nightly obe’s, never suspecting their travels are real and not the fantastical reconstructions of a tireless brain, some fade out from spirit and into another sleep in which they drift into the realm of their higher selves, close but not identical with the god consciousness, to be refitted for another stage on their educative completion and then move, almost magnetically, towards a womb suitable for their stage of unfolding, where another set of belief systems will replace their deep inner knowing, until they are ready at some point to take the reins of self-direction and brave the rigors of the rebel path.
It is, of course, quite possible to do all this consciously, plotting your path with personal karma, soul mates and realizable goals forefront and centre, but so far it seems for the few rather than the many. And as such was the game plan for this planet from what one might term, rather loosely, the beginning, one should not be disappointed, for that calendar of centuries upon which we hang our dreams of ethical and social progress, can easily be discarded for that other dream, the one of eternity.
And so, does that dream of eternity breed a calm certainty in those who live within it? I find that it does, although one’s attachment to that certainty seems so unremarkable as to be almost invisible, such is the joy and pleasure of being there. But to be fair and honest, I have met many religionists who seem to live in a calm certainty of their resurrection to eternal life. Their faith and my knowledge: is that what it comes down to? While faith can be a rock in the stormy sea of life, it often sours into despair when hopes are dashed and plans wrecked. Is my knowledge, that of those who travel obe and see what there is to know, a rock in the stormy sea of life? Yes, but I do not stand on that rock defending my strength and position, I swim around it playfully like some dolphin singing its song, knowing that the swimming and singing in the fullness of the moment is all.