Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for March, 2011

Quote:

“The feeling that someone owes us something, the pain for the harm that others caused us, etc., stops the inner progress of the soul.”

~ Samael Aun Weor

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

I am very lucky. My Husband is very supportive of my pursuit of Gnosis. He has no interest in it himself, however he made the effort to investigate it and to learn about what it is that interests me, because he loves me.

He was open-minded in his approach. He read the books and took one of the courses. He tried the practices, came to the Gnostic Center, and even attended a couple of retreats (in fact one of which ended up being our honeymoon). He incorporated the techniques of awareness and self-observation into his daily life and found them to be beneficial, so much so he even gave the book ‘The Peace of the Spirit Within‘ to a friend who was deploying to Iraq because he thought the techniques would help him there.

After all of that, my Husband decided Gnosis wasn’t for him. After looking into it he thinks it’s a worthwhile pursuit and experienced first-hand how the practices can benefit one’s daily life (and on occasion still uses some of them). But he is simply not interested in esoteric pursuits. He doesn’t particularly care what’s beyond this physical world, doesn’t care what is beyond this life, isn’t interested in the meaning of it all and doesn’t care to awaken. He is a true Agnostic; he doesn’t believe or disbelieve in the Divine, and while he is open to the possibility, it is simply not important to him to find out.

For me, a person with such a yearning to investigate and know these things, I find it perplexing that someone else can have no such desire. How could you not!?! But I guess he sees my point of view the same way. I wish he was interested, but the choice is his. That’s free will and I can’t impose my will upon him.

I call him “my clay man”, he loves his clay world. He loves his physical pursuits and his physical goals. He is always talking about things that I consider mundane, but I listen with interest and engage in his conversation, and I support him, because I love him. We support each other, and that is so important.

Unfortunately some people aren’t as lucky as me. There are many who have spouses or family that don’t support their Gnostic pursuits, and some that are even against it. They haven’t taken the time to really investigate what the inner work is all about, they haven’t explored the practices, and haven’t approached it with an open mind. As such they don’t understand it, and as it often happens when someone doesn’t understand something, it can be strange and even foreboding to them.

You see, a Gnostic life is very different from the way mainstream society operates. Gnostics value spiritual richness, seeking to investigate esoteric mysteries beyond the physical world through practices such as meditation, astral projection (aka out-of-body experiences) and studying dreams. Material wealth is of little value, and physical desires are a distraction which keep one locked into ‘the wheel of life’. A Gnostic strives to be in the present moment, observing one’s thoughts and emotions instead of being governed by them. Once what is within is seen and understood, one can begin to slowly change with the goal to become more spiritual – to reach enlightenment.

In stark contrast, society values material wealth, worldly pursuits and physical pleasures. Success is measured by what you own, how much money you make and/or how powerful you are. The masses seek pleasure and avoid pain, and live their lives driven by desires, emotions, reactions and perceptions, largely unaware of how their psyche operates. Further, they are even unaware that they are unaware!

For this reason it can be very difficult for a person who decides to pursue a Gnostic way of life. People don’t understand why you no longer wish to go clubbing or drinking, or why you lose interest in material pursuits. They think it strange that you stop engaging in their gossip, bitching and complaining, and can’t comprehend how you can be calm and peaceful in situations that solicit emotional reactions in them; why you stop acting the way ‘normal’ people do.

One of my Gnostic friends had to completely hide his esoteric activities from his family and practice in secret and isolation. He lived in the Philippines, which is largely a Christian/Catholic culture that is also very superstitious. His family likened practices such as meditation, mantras and astral travel to that of witchcraft or devil worship.

He discovered Gnosis by way of a dream, but it was like no other he had ever had. He received a spiritual teaching in that dream, and when he woke he knew it was something real and something he had to investigate. He got on the internet and searched and searched until he found Belsebuub’s teachings, and immediately he knew this is what he was shown in his dream.

He didn’t know anyone else who practiced Gnosis, and so he began to practice on his own, in secret, with no support from anyone around him. He practiced diligently, and through his practices he began to investigate the esoteric side to life and received mystical experiences. He tried to broach it with his friends and family, but quickly learned from their reactions that it was not something he could share with them.

He studied all the material and became an advanced student, and the only support he had was that of the on-line community (which is where we first became acquainted). Then in 2008 I had the good fortune of meeting this remarkable young man in person when I spent two months in the Philippines with work.

Every weekend he would travel a great distance from where he lived to come and see me, and while the rest of my work colleagues would go shopping and partying, I spent all my time with him. We would talk about Gnosis and esoteric things and shared our experiences. We would take awareness walks together, do meditations, concentration practices and mantras, and he was SO happy to have someone else he could relate to and practice with.

He told me about his challenges and how difficult it was for him to practice Gnosis in isolation, and lonely. He was extremely close to his family and wished he could share it with them, but there was no way they would understand or accept his way of life. So he began to pray to the Divine to send someone so he wouldn’t be alone in his spiritual quest; a teacher, someone who would start a Gnostic center there in the Philippines so he could be with other Gnostics. And while I was not a teacher and was only going to be there a short time, I had just begun the teacher’s course, and our time together meant so much to him that he believed his prayers had been answered. I felt so much compassion for him, and admiration for his strength and determination.

I am very lucky. My Husband is very supportive of my pursuit of Gnosis, and I couldn’t imagine how difficult it would be not to have his support.

Read Full Post »

Faith from a Gnostics’ point of view has nothing to do with merely believing, but knowing through experience.

“Genuine faith is living knowledge, exact cognition, direct experience. For many centuries faith and belief have been confused, and now it takes great effort and exertion to make people understand that faith is true knowledge and not futile beliefs.”

Samael Aun Weor

Not long before I left for the USA, I was talking with my Gnostic teacher (and mentor) while at a mutual friend’s engagement celebration.

He spoke about this very thing; the importance of practice and verifying the teachings through direct experience, as opposed to holding onto arbitrary beliefs and concepts. I was moving to a far away place with no Gnostic Center close by, and he told me that it would be my direct experience of Gnosis that would get me through when times got tough and my faith would be challenged.

It reminded me of what Jesus was referring to in his parable about building your house (your spiritual work) on rock (experience) and not sand (belief) in Matthew 7:24-27;

7:24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came,  and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

7:26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.


My teacher also spoke about the importance of continuing to investigate. All too often he had seen students gain some direct experience of the teachings, and then stop pushing to investigate further. The incipient experience they gained only served to re-enforce their beliefs, tricking them into complacency thinking they already ‘knew’ (when in fact they actually had verified very little); their work built upon a weak foundation.

He said even if experiences are very clear and profound when they occur, with time they become distant memories, they lose their impact and begin to fade. It’s the way the mind and memory works. The more distant the experience, the more it loses strength and the mind can even begin to doubt it. He had seen countless students walk away from the work because of a lack of continued investigation, despite the initial esoteric pearls they had received.

He was very solemn when he reflected upon them. He spoke of one of Samael’s books where he had written that such people suffer for the rest of their lives from an intense uneasiness as their essence continues to long for the light while their egos mutiny against it.

He said that having had the experiences he himself had gained through Gnosis and knowing what he did up to that point, he could hardly imagine how horrible it would be to bury all that experience deep down inside so as to convince yourself that it wasn’t real, leaving yourself to battle your conscience every day for the rest of your life. As he spoke, his face was full of compassion and sadness.

At the time part of me wondered if he was referring to past students alone; I had the feeling he somehow had some knowledge of what the future held, and wondered if some of that compassion may have been for me.

Now when I reflect back, I wouldn’t be surprised if he did have some insight into what lay ahead.  But if so, rather than for me, I think I now realize who his compassion was for.

“And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.” ~ Jesus.

Read Full Post »

Our internal spiritual work is just that, it’s internal. It is something that happens inside of us. Other people can’t see us doing it, other people can’t do it for us either. It is something we need to do ourselves, within ourselves.

Our internal work is not merely belonging to a particular church or group.  Believing a certain religion isn’t the same as working on ourselves internally. We can gain strength, support and inspiration from others, but that is not enough; other people can’t do our internal work for us!

It doesn’t matter how many books we have read, how much intellectual knowledge we hold, what people have told us, how much we think we know, what we believe in, or even what we don’t. It doesn’t matter how much we think what we believe in is right, or if it even is.

Our internal work is beyond all of that. It happens inside of us, in the moment, when we make the effort to do it. It won’t happen by itself; we need to be active in the process, we need to do the work. We need to observe ourselves, understand ourselves, and work on ourselves internally.

Anything that happens outside of us doesn’t matter, other than to show us what is within. Our work cannot be taken away from us by any person or circumstance, lest we chose not to do it.

I feel an incredible strength right now. I have my work and I chose to do it 🙂

Read Full Post »