TAT FOUNDATION

The TAT Forum: a spiritual magazine of essays, poems and humor.

May 2010

This Month's Contents: My Palliative Guru by Heather Saunders | Depression and the Spiritual Search by Shawn Nevins | "Faintly": A Poem by Shawn Nevins | The Probability of Enlightenment by Eddie Traversa | The Flatscreen by David Scoma | Quotes | Humor |


Editor's Note
by David Weimer

spiritual magazine The nature of reality.

In this month's Forum you'll see what people think reality is and what it isn't.

My own momentary take on the subject, A Story with no People (told by God), can be perused at: One and Only Observer.

Give us your thoughts, send us a written contribution,
or share what you think we should include in a future TAT Forum
.


My Palliative Guru
by Heather Saunders

wave

Meeting Wes came as a complete surprise. It was late May and I was in a deep spiritual funk. I couldn’t muster one ounce of energy to apply towards anything that even looked spiritual – I would even say I had an aversion towards anything resembling spirituality. I had applied a lot of energy towards the search for the six months prior and sometime in April I had run out of energy and declared it quits. Then I met Wes.

To back up a little, throughout March and April I had been working extra shifts for a co-worker on an extended leave and, of course as these things happen, the day she left we suddenly became extremely busy, with a heavy palliative caseload. For six weeks I was completely overworked and overwhelmed, especially with patients who were dying. It just so happens that my particular caseload took the brunt of it. (I am a visiting nurse in the community and part of our work is palliative care). I remember lying awake in the middle of the night thinking “There must be something for me to learn from this. It’s too obvious. Here I am, helping people to die, and at the same time wanting to ‘die before I die’ myself.” I found myself praying: “Please, help me to learn what I need to learn from my palliative patients. I am open and ready”.

Wes was actually somewhat agitated at the beginning of my first visit May 22. I found out later that he didn’t want any services in the home but finally agreed to have a visiting nurse. I arrived to his question: “Why are you here and what exactly do you do?” I enjoyed his directness. In our initial conversation he made a statement that got my attention. “I plan to die here at home and my family are in support of that. I’m not afraid to die.” I don’t often hear people say they aren’t afraid to die, so asked him why not. He paused for a moment and replied “I’ve already died.” He explained that when he was around seven years old he drowned but was subsequently revived, and that experience changed his whole life. I continued to ask questions and he continued to talk. By the end of that first visit we agreed that we liked each other’s “energy” and would get along well. We gave each other a big hug.

The next visit I brought Wes a couple of books, David Carses’ Perfect Brilliant Stillness and Beyond Mind, Beyond Death by the TAT Foundation. Each visit we sat outside in lawn chairs and tried our best to get the business of nursing out of the way as quickly as possible, and get on to the pleasure of discussing spirituality. I began to look forward to our visits, noticing anticipation a few days before, and would come home and tell Gerry all about our discussions each time. Every time I hated to leave. He said things like: “Heather this is so simple. It’s so simple. You are already that.” “Just remember…. SIMPLE.” He would often say: “I am God and God is Me.” Later he added: “You are God and God is You.” and “All this is, is Awareness being aware of Awareness.” When I asked him how his drowning affected his life he answered: “I don’t care. I care but I don’t care. I have no desires and no fears.” Then he spread his arms like wings and with a big smile on his face said “Absolute freedom.” I knew that this guy knew what I wanted to know. I had no doubt.

When I arrived one day he greeted me holding Perfect Brilliant Stillness saying: “This book puts into words what I’ve been feeling my whole life. It brought tears to my eyes several times.” He even went so far as to highlight a few sections that he thought were important for me. “I didn’t think you’d mind,” he said. We went through parts of the book together. It seemed to have made a big impact on him.

Later I gave him a couple of articles I printed off the internet, “The Dazzling Dark” by John Wren-Lewis and the “Induction Talk” by William Samuel. “Well Heather, you’ve done it to me again. The first line of this article (The Dazzling Dark) ‘Some, if we believe what they say, are born with God Consciousness’….I was born with God Consciousness. The drowning experience simply amplified it!”

Spending time with Wes brought my spiritual longing back with great force. He made me feel like the only reason I wasn’t “seeing” was because I was making it too complicated. ”Simple,” he kept saying. Inexplicably I slipped into a place of having a very strong desire for Truth and at the same time not caring in the least if I ever found it. I really really really want it, but I don’t care if I ever get it. Strange. He made me feel like finding Truth was a real possibility – which is so inspiring! (I’ve felt this twice before, when I first met Mike Conners at the April 2004 TAT meeting, and during Bart Marshall’s session of the September 2007 TAT workshop).

I decided to give Wes a copy of Perfect Brilliant Stillness. He cried.

When I saw him on my usual Wednesday visit in early August, he had suddenly and rapidly declined. I increased his visits from weekly to daily. I saw him again on the Thursday; he had more energy and was more animated again. We had a good discussion. “I hate to keep repeating myself” he said, “but I am God and God is Me. You are God and God is You.” Friday he was in poor shape and I was going away the following morning for a week’s holiday. He made a suggestion: “Re-read Perfect Brilliant Stillness.” It was a tearful goodbye but neither of us was willing to admit that we might never see each other again, especially me. I had safely convinced myself that he would rally for at least one more week and I would see him as soon as I got back. I had my co-worker promise to keep me updated with any changes. She emailed me Sunday saying Wes was taken to hospital with a medical crisis and then Monday night, August 14, she emailed again to say he had returned home and died a few hours later.

Guru I was devastated. I didn’t want him to die yet. But if he had to die, I really wanted to be there. I wanted to thank him. I wanted to say goodbye. I wanted him to know that I felt immense gratitude and love for him. And at the same time I know what Wes would say….”Heather, you don’t need me. The only reason you recognize this in me is because it is who you are. You are already That.”

Since then I have experienced a range of emotions. I’ve felt a profound sadness. I miss our conversations so much. I’ve felt anger at having lost him much too quickly. But mostly, I continue to feel immense gratitude for having had my own personal guru, who came into my life out of nowhere and so unexpectedly, for a short but intense time. It was an unexpected gift.

I did reread Perfect Brilliant Stillness in the remaining days of that holiday. It felt especially brilliant. Wes’s highlights were especially poignant.

How wonderful to have inspiration appear out of nowhere. It hasn’t waned since. I feel incredibly humbled to have received an answer to my prayer, and so grateful to have had the time I did with Wes. He came to tell me that this IS possible, this is SO worth it, and this IS what I want. And it’s so SIMPLE. I am already That.


Moment after moment,
everyone comes out
from nothingness. This
is the true joy
of life.

~Shunryu Suzuki


Depression and the Spiritual Search
by Shawn Nevins

3/23/10

I had my fair share of depressions throughout my high school and college years. I rarely felt comfortable around other people; rarely felt that I “fit in.” As a consequence, personal failures such as a difficult class or rejection by a girl were amplified by an already uncertain sense of self. Truly, though, I have to thank these periods of unhappiness for driving me to question the meaning of life. That questioning left me open to the message delivered by Richard Rose one evening in 1990, in a lecture called “What is Enlightenment?” A happy man might have walked out unimpressed, but I was intrigued.

If we observe our depression, we can, at least in retrospect, see it often points to false promises made by our dreams, desires, egos, or societal values: that love will make us happy, security can be found through money, good works will insure us against evil, and dozens of other usually unexamined beliefs. Unexamined, that is, until they fail and bring us low.

Embarking on a search for Truth (expressed at the time as simply desiring less misery), I quit playing a lot of the ridiculous games of life. Those points of pride became less important; were seen as erroneous. Depression continued, however, for new reasons. These new depressions centered on a lack of faith in my ability to find an answer. Enlightenment was seen as the highest and hardest goal in life. I had a strong sense there was an answer – that I could know the truth about my self – but little sense that I was smart enough, strong enough, determined, intense, and unwavering as I needed to be.

Looking back, I don’t see much value to this type of depression. I didn’t emerge from it a stronger person. It didn’t inspire me to work harder. As a meditator and observer of moods, I could see the depression happening, but that provided relief of no measure. I just remember being glad it was over, like when the lights come on after a blackout. You might argue that, like my pre-search depressions, it kept me unhappy and therefore kept me searching. However, these depressions made me want to give up the search; to go back and try to live a “normal” life. Only the realization that there was no escape from my questions kept me searching.

I developed a couple of tactics to deal with this sort of depression. I recognized the value of being around friends when I was depressed. This was difficult to execute, of course, since I didn’t want to be around anyone when depressed – an unfortunate reaction to depression and the opposite of what we need to do. I also decided to not make any important decisions while depressed. This is, in essence, treading water until the depression passed and is described further in the essay “Moody Decisions.” A change of scenery sometimes helped shorten the depression, or some mild diversion like going to see a movie. These tactics shortened depressions, but never eliminated them.

surprise It took finding an answer to the existential questions that plagued me to eliminate depression. I don’t claim to be immune from it, just that I haven’t been depressed in the ten years since a “realization” descended upon me. Oh, I’ve had a few disappointments, just as I’ve had pleasant surprises. In fact, in a sense, everything seems surprising. Who knows, I might be singing sad songs in my swill a few years from now, but that’s okay.

We’re in the midst of a decades-long pharmacological revolution which may eventually eliminate depression, though I have a feeling depression is a bit like cancer – always mutating, changing to adapt to our measures. Our brains are problem-solving machines and will create a problem where none exists. The happiness baseline is always shifting, leaving us satisfied only for moments. Despite my doubts about a medical solution to depression, there is a variety of depression which benefits from medicine.

I know a few people on whom depression descends like a shadow with no cause. When asked why they are depressed, what triggered it, they find no reason. I used to think they simply weren’t aware of the cause, but now I suspect it is a medical reason. They have a chemical imbalance whose trigger is not a psychological event. A switch is flipped and they plunge into depression. These people should seek out a good doctor – someone who will work with them to find the right amount of medicine to control their depression, yet not take the fire out of their desire. The patient, too, must be aggressive in determining what level of medicine works for them. I know one person who wound up taking slivers of a single pill because, through experimentation, she found that worked for her.

There is depression brought about by blows to our ego, and there is depression brought on by a chemical imbalance. There are lessons learned from every experience and a time to move beyond repeating the same patterns again and again.

There is a third variety of depression alluded to by Richard Rose when he spoke of depression as a truer state of mind and of the suicide as similar to a person on the verge of enlightenment.(1) This is the tension between our will to live and the undeniable fact that everything will die. It’s the-Sun-will-become-a-ball-of-ice depression, the weight of time, the endless expanse of infinity, the graveyard clock – all things end; nothing is permanent. This is a truer perspective and depressing to the little man staring into its unblinking face. There is nothing to do when this descends – it’s the ego being honest about its fate. You’ll probably recover, but if not, so much the better.

(1) John Kent's "Psychology of the Observer: The Path to Reality Through the Self": Chapter 16 - Death and Passing Through Zero.

Click here to .


A poem
by Shawn Nevins

"Faintly"
You never hear every word;
never see every face that passes
through your life,
till one evening,
too early for bed,
you lie on your memories
and the very idea of “your”
seems as worn out as this body,
and the phantoms of thought
that seemed so electric alive
escape.
It was all felt so faintly,
till now.


The Probability of Enlightenment
by Eddie Traversa

In Advaita there is the notion of no doer which denotes that there is no individual I and therefore implies that seeking and spiritual practices are of no value for "who would do it" and "who would attain enlightenment?"

probability On this basis many modern teachers propose that practice and preparation are not needed since practice and preparation are not the cause of enlightenment. I would agree to the extent that a practice or set of practices cannot cause enlightenment. Enlightenment is certainly not a cause and effect phenomena. However it is an acausal phenomenon which has certain implications and this aspect is often misunderstood in the spiritual community.

In every case of genuine enlightenment that I have come across there has always been a seeking component even amongst those teachers that posit that there is nothing to be done. I can understand the mindset involved here for if I look at my own history and set of practices, I cannot say they caused enlightenment or even moved me an inch closer to it. Remember that enlightenment is not the attainment of something, rather it is closer in nature to the removal of ignorance which demonstrates that enlightenment has always been the case, irrespective of whether there is recognition of it or not.

Even though a practice or set of practices are not the cause of enlightenment, what I can say is that some practice and preparation are related to enlightenment. It is the term "related" that often causes the confusion as it is often thought of in terms of cause and effect.

As some people know, I have a background in psychology and as part of that training this involved a lot of experimental design and statistical analysis which I would like to utilize in order to explain the relationship between seeking and enlightenment. Do not worry there will be no complex mathematical formula or equations in this paper, but some rudimentary understanding of what is meant by causal and relationships may be fruitful.

When the term relationships are used in statistical analysis it denotes that there is a relationship between two or more things. We can find a near perfect relationship between two things, which many people would assume that one thing causes the other. But that is extremely misleading.

Consider for a moment the relationship between foot size and intelligence quota (IQ) as measured by a standard intelligence test. What we would find is a near perfect correlation between the two. A correlation is the term used to describe relationships in statistics. Does that near perfect correlation mean that one causes the other? The answer is no.

The near perfect relationship exists because when we are babies, we have tiny feet and a non-existent IQ: Non-existent because a baby does not have the capacity as yet to undergo a standard intelligence test. As we grow, our feet also grow and so does our IQ. It may not grow as much as we would like but it does grow. However, we cannot say that having larger feet is the cause of IQ because obviously one does not cause the other. All we can say is that there is a strong relationship there.

Correlations are important for many reasons but one of the primary reasons they are important is they allow for some reasonably complex predictive analysis to be made. To understand consider the relationship between academic success and IQ.

The best and most consistent predictor we have of attaining a Ph.D. is IQ. Generally to get a Ph.D. an IQ of at least 115+ is needed. The term predictor is an unfortunate term to use as it again tends to imply causality. To remove those implications think of a predictor in terms of probability.

We might say something like if there is an IQ of 115+ then there is a 20% probability of attaining a Ph.D. That 20% figure is arbitrary by the way as I am far too lazy to look up the actual probabilities and when all said and done it is not that important. The more central thing is to understand the concept.

Obviously we cannot say that having an IQ of 115+ causes the attainment of a Ph.D. It would be sheer nonsense to say so. But what we can say is the probability of attaining a Ph.D. is significantly improved if our IQ is above 115. In short the odds are more in our favour.

We can factor in other variables and begin to build a model. For example, we might add motivation, amount of stress etc. and see that probability rise further. Let's say to 40% just for the sake of it. So now the odds are beginning to swing more in our favour and the chances of attaining a Ph.D. have significantly improved.

I would urge caution here in assuming that if we know enough variables we can build a near perfect model. That will never be the case as there is too much individual diversity and there is also the notion of randomness that comes into play in these sorts of predictive models. For example, we might have an IQ of 115+, be highly motivated, handle stress reasonably well and so on, but none of these, even in combination "guarantee" a Ph.D. They only signify that the probability has increased.

So let us bring this understanding home and apply it to seeking and enlightenment. The seeking in itself is not the cause of the enlightenment in much the same way that motivation would not be the cause of attaining a Ph.D. Yet seeking swings the odds more in our favour in exactly the same way that motivation or IQ swing the odds in our favour when it comes to attaining a Ph.D. It isn't the cause, but it does bear a relationship.

Of course seeking is such a generic term that covers so many facets that some practices will hinder the cause. An obvious example to illustrate, someone may be attempting to attain enlightenment via the use of hallucination drugs. The chances of them discovering that they are already what they seek are remote. Not impossible mind you, but extremely remote and unlikely.

A person who has purity of purpose, is willing to explore themselves more fully, has a high degree of motivation, is seeking to remove ignorance from their lives, willing to explore intuitive processes, has an experiential approach, is attempting to loosen their stranglehold on attempting to control life and so on, to my way of thinking has shifted the probabilities slightly more in their favour. Therefore it is not just seeking that it is important, but also the direction and manner in which we seek that is central.

I cannot prove this as there is no scientific study that I am aware of conducted in this area but this is entirely consistent with my experiences. When I look back on my history I see that everything was interrelated and that it could not possibly have been any other way. But even with that viewpoint I cannot say that all those events caused enlightenment. I can only say the probabilities more than likely shifted into favour and grace appeared.

When I look at others, even those that urge the dropping of practices I see the relationship between seeking and discovery, even though they themselves may be dismissive of practices. They are right in that the practice and seeking did not cause enlightenment, nothing can. Yet it is equally dismissive of the complex relationships between things that allowed a certain set of probabilities to appear. They may well have been taking a walk in the park and in between a step something miraculous occurred for lack of better terminology. It misses something though, something very important. The miraculous was occurring from the moment they were born, even before they were born, to the momentless moment of enlightenment and beyond and that is what I take issue with. It's either all miraculous or nothing is... It's either all the Absolute including every mundane event and incident in a person's life or it is not.

It is simple, if they were not born in the first place then ignorance could not be removed and the light of consciousness could not shine through the vessel. Being born didn't cause enlightenment, but it did bear a relationship to it. Without that relationship there could never be the recognition of consciousness within the vessel.

In enlightenment even under the best of circumstances we are likely speaking of a 1 in 10,000 probability. But that is far better probability than a 1 in a ten million probability. And that to me seems to be the gist of the whole seeking business. We should not seek under the impression of cause and effect, i.e. if we adhere to a certain set of practices then enlightenment is guaranteed. We should seek under the impression that we are incrementally increasing the probability of enlightenment with no guarantees. Bearing in mind of course that at best it is only a small probability to begin with.

One final thought to consider. What is the fundamental structure/essence of the dream reality (universe) built upon? Why probabilities of course. Our notions of cause and effect are antiquated, remnants of a paradigm which is slowly dying via new and exciting scientific discoveries.

So let it die.

Instead focus on shifting the odds in favour and pray that grace enters. If grace does not enter, all is not lost. If we are wise we can greatly enhance our lot in the dream world by using many of the same principles, less ego, less control etc.. But that is another story left for another time.

I have not specifically outlined which direction and things that may be favourable for a seeker on their journey for the sake of brevity. I will say however that one could do worse than look at the principles outlined by Rose and others on this forum. That seems to be a very good place to start from.

Do not be fooled by the philosophy of doing nothing. Do something and learn to discern what to do and which direction to take is my best advice.

For this and other writings, visit Eddie Traversa's blog: Truth Realization.


The Flatscreen
by David Scoma

Q&A audio discussion transcript

Q: You’ve talked about all that there is being “the self-aware screen.” Just now we talked about that the Void projects, this is my understanding of it, what’s occurring is this very small part of, small superficial part that’s almost like floating on top of the Void – so is the Void projecting the universe then the…I guess my question is could the Void be aware of itself without the universe? You seem to be saying that the Void needs the universe in order to be aware of itself.

flatscreen D: Okay I’m talking as an experience. So here’s the thing, let me try and give you an analogy for this. Everybody’s seen plasma screen televisions. Plasma screen TV. A flat-screen. So if a movie is being projected onto a flat-screen and you are sitting watching the movie on the flat-screen, you’re seeing the movie kind of play out, you’re watching it and there is a you, there’s the body, there’s the eyes and you’re watching the flat-screen. You’re not having anything to do with what’s going on in that movie. You’re watching it. You may feel empathy for the characters. You may even get drawn into the story and kind of forget everything else going on around you as a person which by the way is an excellent, excellent preliminary kind of feeling-sensation of what “no-self” is. You fall into no-self continually. Continually. And the mind kicks back in and you pull back and you think well “I am watching this.” That was just a little segue. You are continually dipping into that.

But, so there is you as a person watching this flat-screen. You’re seeing the movie unfold. You would never run up and try and change what is going on in the movie. You would never try to alter what’s going on in the movie ’cause it’s the movie. It’s something you’re watching. So now all you need to do to kind of get an idea for how this screen works is as I’m discussing it, and this is a tough thing to do, cause we’re convinced there is subject-object duality, subject-object kind of linked into it mentally, take the person away as the observer and just have that flat-screen there and that movie playing on that screen. And suddenly imagine for a moment that that screen has the ability to watch what’s being played on it. And then on top of that not only does it have the ability to watch what’s being played on it, it itself is projecting the movie. And you already notice that because you’re watching the movie on the flat-screen. So it’s playing on there but at the same time it’s the screen itself that’s taking it in. This isn’t fully getting it but it’s a pretty, it’s kind of a parallel analogy to how this is happening. You think because you’re looking through human eyes that you are looking out at the world. What’s actually happening is this field of awareness on which the story is both being projected and played and taken in with no separation.

Q: So the story could disappear and…

D: Oh, it will. The story will disappear. It’s not that it “could.” [Was speaking here specifically about the story aspect. Yet in actuality, the picture on the screen – the entire set of sensory experiences, even beyond “sight” – disappears and reappears constantly and continually and a massive rate, just as the fragmented slices of imagery also instantaneously flickers into existence then turns to black countless times on a TV or movie screen – D.]

Q: So would awareness still be taking itself in?

D: All there is…let me address for a second, and it did kind of sound like…kind of floating on top of it a bit…that’s making it sound even like there is a little bit of separation there. It’s making it sound like there is this field of awareness and there is this story on top of it. It is all so completely integrated. The emptiness and the supposed solid form are completely integrated. There is no one without the other.

Q: There is no inside-outside?

D: No. No. There is no outside.

Q: It’s all projection?

projector D: It’s all projection and it’s also not. Projection again makes it sound like there is a projector projecting onto and again it’s hard to get this across, it’s just happening. It’s as if you’re watching the film and there’s the characters in the film. Now we know from film-making that there are actors that were recorded or filmed playing those parts but just imagine for a second that there weren’t actors playing those parts ever and that this film magically appeared and that there’s these characters on the screen, a flat-screen. Now imagine that there’s no celluloid there even playing through it but that there’s just this picture and the picture, the little parts of the picture that look as if they are separate, are not separate. It’s just this entire view. And now I am going to call the characters “symbols.” Each of those characters is a kind of self-aware kind of symbol. The character, the fake character being projected onto the screen – the screen that is able to take in the movie all by itself with no separation – has the ability for these separate, supposedly separate individuals, these little characters, to be aware of themselves. And this awareness seems so complete that they believe themselves to be separate and fully autonomous of their actions and fully in control of what they are doing when all it is is a movie being played on a screen that’s self-aware.

Q: So if you take that as in a dream state, at night you go to sleep and you have all these characters in the dream.

D; How do you view the characters in your dream? The characters in your dream, this is a rhetorical question, do you give a great deal of credence to the characters in your dream once say [most of the time when we're dreaming we are not necessarily aware that we are dreaming right away ,but] when you catch on – and I don’t even necessarily [mean] being lucid within it. But a point comes in the dream when, “Oh, wait! I’m sleeping now. There is no way a rhinoceros would fall through the ceiling and then serve tea.” You know when one of those things happen and you know its a dream – you don’t necessarily take those other characters or the situations very seriously. When it starts to get dark and intense, and you wake up, and you feel relief – and two seconds later you forgot the dream even happened. Voila!

Q: But the screen on which the dreams are happening…

projection screen D: It’s the same screen. Same screen. It can be troublesome to use the analogy of being awake and being in a dream but in another sense it’s extremely accurate because nothing has changed. I know a lot of times when dreams happen here it seems as if its David in the dream watching it still, but a lot of times it’s not. The screen hasn’t changed, it’s just what’s projected on it looks a little different, is a little more surreal. May be tied a little bit to the quote unquote real life situations, but it's the same screen.

Transcribed by Mark Scorelle.


Quotes....

...And what is the point in coming back? [after enlightenment] I don’t know whether it’s more valuable to come back or more valuable to stay. But one thing is, for your fellow man, for the fellow on the rung below – and of course this was incorporated into my vector, strangely enough. Because I was very angry in my youth. I ran into phonies, all sorts of hucksters, wanting money for everything. For every little bit of wisdom they give you they want to rake you off for a few thousand dollars, and so they degenerate into rackets.

So that I swore that if I ever found something I would make it available. And I have a strange superstition that that’s what aided me to find. Now I can’t validate that with any proof. I can say I have a superstition that that helped. Because this vector then meant that when you reached there it isn’t the end of the project; the project isn’t finished. And this automatically brings you back to complete your task. All of which is determined by yourself ahead of time. That’s the only way I can explain it.

~ Richard Rose, answering a question after a lecture.


Humor....

ornery donkeys


Reader Commentary

Dear Forum Staff,

I like your online magazine because there is always something practical, encouraging or "a new way to look" to be found in the writings and even in the pictures. For example, ----Haikun's Monkey! The artist must be quite a loving sage to give us a "wake up call-message" in such a gentle way. I'm going to look up his life in just a few minutes and see what he was about.

A few musical suggestions: Nat King Cole's "Nature Boy" with its message that "The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is just to love, and be loved in return." Hank Williams' version of "Cool, Clear Water." A song that makes you want to go get a drink of water as you give thought to how precious it is to us. (Bless Youtube for giving folks a place to share wonderful music from all walks of life and times.) There is another version of Water by Son's of the Pioneers that is also expressive.

One other song comes to mind and that is called "Alive and Kicking," by Fats Domino, who was caught in Katrina and came back up determined to try again and to keep loving life no matter what. "Alive and Kicking" is his latest anthem and it's more than an "I will survive song, its an "I'm living and loving and celebrating my portion of life no matter what appears to be going on out there." It was very healing to hear him sing that way because i'm originally from Louisiana and that entire picture /"seeming"? was tough to look upon. But the message of the song is universal of course for how anyone might meet the storms that blow our way.

Also it was great to discover the existence of The Puppet Sage by way of your e-mail magazine. He's real cute--- the way he "lays it all down" to us and we do need to laugh more at ourselves and the world along the way, don't we?

I read somewhere that Laughter is one of God's Great Names. Somewhere else I came across...."We're never nearer to the Heart of God than when we play and when we Laugh." Sounds true.

We appreciate the time and effort in bringing us The Forum,

With Light and Laughter,

~N


Did you enjoy the Forum? Then buy the book! Beyond Mind, Beyond Death is available at Amazon.com.

 

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