If this is your first time reading this blog, it is recommended that you start here.
Please visit http://shiftingshadow.net for my more complete collection of music and artwork.
The Paisley Pattern
Most of us have had our share of dreams with seemingly contradictory messages. In my experience, this occurs most often when our personal development is not advanced with respect to the topic at hand. My visions once showed me how one can visualize one's development on any specific subject as movement and oscillation within a Paisley pattern, an example of this pattern is shown below:
In the early stages of our development on a particular subject, we begin in the lower, wider portion of the Paisley pattern, where there is much room to oscillate. Experience, dreams, life's events that relate to the topic seem to shift randomly from one side of a polarity to another making life seem sporadic, without meaning, and confusing. Over the course of our evolution, we develop understanding, bias, and focus. Thus, we move up the Paisley pattern to the narrower regions where the oscillations are less intense and experience surrounding the topic at hand begins to seem more orderly. Finally, we move further along the narrow, winding path of the top of the Paisley pattern, in a seemingly never-ending process of recursive refinement. If you are familiar with Paisley fractals, they express this form of never-ending, recursive evolution and refinement.
Following this analogy, when innerscape content and life's events seem to oscillate with a feeling of randomness, it is most likely because our understanding of the topic at hand is still immature. Such is the case, I believe, with my own understanding of the anima and its relation with the conscious self since my dreams last month on this subject seemed so contradictory.
The Flying Pegasus
This morning, I felt the same kind of tug and pull on my astral body as I did during my grapple with the shadow creature last week. This time, however, I was fully awake in bed and so I dared not fall back to sleep. I began getting imagery of a strange nature that was very intriguing. However, something seemed wrong and I felt that the messages were coming from the dark side.
Later, the dark feelings went away. And in relation to last week's message "help harness life's questions", I hallucinated a very life-like image of a winged horse (a pegasus) colored blue (which in the Ra Material is the color which depicts freely given communication). The vision began with the pegasus flying through a very ethereal setting but the surroundings eventually turned dark and foreboding. It ended with the horse being consumed by a dark, black hole. I believe this was a warning as I continue to receive messages from the unconscious, to beware of messages from the dark side, as they could be just as fascinating and thus alluring, but ultimately detrimental.
Dreams as Movements in Consciousness
The general attitude I have witnessed towards interpreting dreams centers around the attempt to gleam the revelatory information contained therein. I do not believe that every dream, even the dreams that come with power, are mainly meant to convey meaning. Some seem to have the sole purpose of affecting a movement in consciousness, a conditioning.
The dream I had this morning provides an interesting example. Ever since returning from my trip to New York, I have been longing to go back and it has made me view my current dwelling grounds, San Francisco, in less than an attractive light. Since my desire to return is neither feasible nor is it useful for my current disposition, I dreamed of New York City in a way that reminded me of the bland police TV shows of the early 80's. Since it's already been a couple of weeks since my return, the dream was enough to wash off the last remaining longing to return. I now view San Francisco in a positive light again. In this manner, dreams are very useful in keeping us psychologically healthy or at least on the right track. For even when we don't remember our dreams, we experience movements in consciousness. More often than not, however, such movement is subtle and goes by unnoticed, like that of a shifting shadow.
On that note, if we were to review the two seemingly contradictory dreams I had last month concerning the anima, it is possible to view their primary function as movements in consciousness. The first, being the orange-robed monk dream, suggesting an assertive attitude towards the anima, and the second as a warning against an aggressively demanding and overly assertive attitude.
Since I am not very advanced in this topic, it is certainly conceivable that a wide, exploratory movement between the two polarities can be instructive to my conscious self in that the effects of both perspectives are illuminated through actual experience. Given such illumination a bias can then be formed towards one side of a polarity or another, or one balanced somewhere in between, and such a bias can be further refined over time as one moves up the Paisley pattern.
I have had visions in the past of the archetypal patterns of movement that come with these evolution inspiring oscillations. I currently glimpse barely discernable, graph-like images of these patterns and it seems like there is intervening material awaiting me in my subconscious that needs to surface first before these images are presented and understood. But, from what I can tell so far, they resemble the mathematically enigmatic patterns produced by some crop circles.
The Hurricane Period
I have been consciously aware of experiencing these evolution-inspiring movements since my college years more than a decade ago. At that time, I lead a solitary life full of introspective exploration and creativity on the weekdays and on the weekend I visited my home town to visit family and friends. The return to gregariousness on a weekly basis was like a sanity safety net and during the week I allowed myself full indulgence in the adventures of the inner landscape. Each week would follow a similar pattern; it would start out calm and uneventful in the beginning. By Tuesday or Wednesday, I would start to feel some inner turmoil brewing, which was usually vague and unnexplainable. The resolution of this internal dissonance would come in the form of one or more shifts in consciousness that would happen on their own, sparking a movement that would propel me into a higher state of mind by Thursday night, at which time I was most productive in my creative pursuits. These movements in consciousness not only resolved the inner discord and led me to higher states, but also possessed poetic qualities that fascinated me to no end so that they were typically at the center of my attention.
There were a series of events that occurred after starting my first job after college which, metaphorically speaking, pushed me into a corner in that I felt very threatened psychologically. In a deep sense of panic, I called upon these movements to take on full force so that I would develop and advance myself in those areas I felt vulnerable and in need of understanding. The oscillations, which either involved mental perspectives or the emotions or both, moved me from one extreme to another sometimes in less than a few seconds. At times, it left me confused and unstable, at other times it gave me knowledge that was very useful, and I had powers of mentation that I never imagined possible.
This type of fast oscillation I used to call Hurricane Thinking and deserves a chapter of its own which I plan to write later. Hurricane Thinking is highly UN-recommended because it can be very damaging to the ego and mental/emotional stability. The three weeks of experiencing this form of mentation took me literally two years to entirely recover from, what with all the ego-mutilation I went through because of the oscillations. During this recovery period, it was not uncommon for me to suffer from anxiety attacks that lasted two or three days. But, as the saying goes, "what doesn't kill me makes me grow." Over time, I learned how to call upon such a speed of movement but to remain absolutely stationary in my tracks as my thoughts whisked about me. This is possible through selflessness, a deeply rooted sobriety, and a complete emotional detachment from the movement. The adjustment of the speed of the movement is possible through the will, when I am able to connect my conscious will with the will that is rooted in deeper parts of my psyche, which I can only accomplish in certain states.
I now view the series of events which lead to the Hurricane Period absolutely fated, that the development of this form of mentation is of utmost importance to my spiritual path. As I wrote in my diary during my college years: "The purpose of the artist is to manifest a hurricane and stand still within it.
I am not sure from where or how the specific patterns of movement come about but I consider them archetypical in nature. That my mentation can automatically follow such patterns is still a very mysterious phenomenon for me. My current theory is that just as I feel I have crystallized as a musician in that there are very specific rules that have fit into place with a high degree of regularity and strength, so have these patterns of movement become ingrained in my being so that they are a part of my vibration as a psychological entity. They are crystallized pathways of thought and during my higher states of mind, many ideas I possess can be passed through these avenues. Another way to look at it comes from one of my works of fiction. The main character, named Crimson, unleashes "pocket hurricanes", tiny twisters that flit about the city and eventually settle down when their work is done.
A Simple Example of Oscillation
This weekend, I experienced some oscillation with respect to my confidence in writing this blog and I think that the story can be an instructive, although simplistic, example of the intelligence behind seemingly random movements in consciousness. Seeing the potential in developing my ideas, my ego became inflated and I saw myself affecting humanity's evolution in a positive manner. For the last decade or more, I've been hallucinating an "X" when I close my eyes. No matter what mood I am in, I can conjure up the "X" with ease. Saturday night, I had very vivid visions of vibrant energy dancing about with amazing speed. The "X", which I have come to interpret as a symbol of transformation, was at the center of the vibrating energy. Generally, when I see the "X", my being is centered upon a specific location with respect to the "X". When I am at the bottom, middle part, it represents my ordinary states of mind and that of humanity at large. Passing through the middle of the "X" denotes raising my spiritual level to the next higher realm. During my higher states, I see myself at the middle top part of the "X". That night, my visions showed me passing through the middle of the "X" many times, the "X" now extremely vibrant and alive, and as I did so, there was magnificent white light. The more the white light shone, the more the light attracted the rest of humanity upwards through the middle. I envisioned myself helping humanity through projecting this form of love-radiant, buoyant light.
Over the next few hours, and the next morning, I oscillated to the other extreme of the self-confidence/self-debasement polarity. I felt completely useless and incompetent with respect to my writing abilities and ashamed of having had the audacity to believe that I was going to be a significant aid to humanity's evolution. This kind of extreme oscillation is quite typical when consciousness moves far into a certain perspective which is essentially lacking realistic foundation. It is the equivelant of stretching a rubber band. Such movement inpires evolutionary development, however, in that it can give a 360 degree view of a particular axis of polarity in relation to the subject at hand. Oscillating towards extreme self-confidence gave me an intense amount of ambition and drive to write, as well as inspiration and a radiating, unconditional love. However, I saw how it also filled me with unrealistic expectations, and led me to accept unfounded assumptions; my usual skeptical questioning of the inspired ideas that were surfacing in my consciousness. My subsequent oscillation towards self-debasement gave me an opportunity to question the ideas I have accumulated so far, and to build a constructive criticism of my writing so far. It also allowed to visualize the reactions of a reader who is highly skeptical and quick to dismiss my new ideas. The disadvantages of such a state were the lack of drive to write and the blockage of my inspiration.
I have since then settled on the more balanced perspective that there will be at least some people who benefit from some of my ideas and the faith in this belief is enough to give me the drive I need and to avoid blockages of my inspiration. I still feel capable of conjuring up the love-radiance from time to time that I had during my visions and I am working on integrating the oscillation into an extremely critical and skeptical attitude about my writing into my ordinary inventory of perspectives so that I forever push myself to increase the level of my writing's quality. This settled attitude, then, is more of a regularization of my confidence and forms a specific bias, which pushes me upwards in the Paisley pattern. Subsequent oscillations will less likely be as extreme and more likely come in the form of refinement. If extreme oscillation were to occur, the movement will most likely settle back close to this developed bias.
Such an example illustrates purely internal adventures. The same order, however, seems to underscore the psychological movements that originate as a reaction to the external events in life and in this manner life provides catalysts for our evolution.
My "harnessing the question" of the proper configuration of the conscious self with respect to the anima has provided a much more complicated example of personal development which is integrated in Time. Let us review the essential events. First, there was the orange-robed monk dream which suggested that a domineeringly masculine proclivity could help achieve buoyancy in the face of distractions minutiae, i.e. the superficial and the mundane. Secondly, I took the picture of the "Gentlemen" painting which synchronistically showed the bartender excersicing her power over the loud and spiritually distracting television. Thirdly, my attempt to tune out a distracting conversation coming from a neighboring table in a restaurant led me to read a passage in a book that recounted the story of an orange-robed monk that turned ON the television as a light-hearted demonstration of the existence of magic. Fourthly, I attended a live show of a band whose singer was a male with the breasts of a woman, which symbolized the exaggerated manifestation of the anima. He sang "Are you free?" repeatedly and that same night, I had a nightmare that my consciousness was imprisoned, which can be interpreted as the over-emotional reaction to having to keep a full-time job. And finally, I had the dream that warned me against suppressing and abusing the anima or else I risk getting attacked.
These events provided a complex buoquet of symbolism that pictured a variety of psychological proclivities, some of which seemed contradictory. And their unresolved richness more typically exemplifies the common nature of our development in various aspects of life. Normally, however, we are not aware of the various ways in which life teaches, the lessons remaining subliminal to a large degree. But, just as we are affected by our dreams even though we may not remember them, we are also moved by life in ways that we could follow and at times interpret were we to become aware of them. Therefore, the methods of strengthening our discernment of the underlying order behind our lives is arguably of great importance. Methods of increasing the efficiency of utilizing the catalysts life gives us as opportunities for growth are also of high benefit.
I dove head first into my creative pursuits during my college years. I quickly realized that I was most successful when I lived life very intensely. To be deeply passionate about life and to live it to the hilt is a form of appreciation and unconditional love of life, an invitation for life to come out and play. This passionate involvement comes with the risk of getting hurt, however, and therefore one has to be able to desensitize oneself from the various aspects where harm can be done and the ability of "dancing in and out of the steps of living" (as written in the Ra Material) is ideal. One of the main advantages to this intensity is that the movements in consciousness can become quite rich and possess the potential of bearing much fruit. Secondly, it facilitates the awareness of the deeper, more subtle processes, intuitions, thoughts, and feelings by raising the volume, so to speak. The awareness of potential synchronicites while living them out is an example of how intensity can bring out into the light that which is generally hidden or obscure.
Strengthening our discernment of the underlying order also occurs by paying close attention to our dreams, in addition to synchronicities, and holding our focus on the same specific areas of exploration and development for some time so that the process has time to unfold and the inner life is not so sporadic. Also, living intuitively, moment to moment, provides the opportunity for synchronistic conditioning to occur so that the synchronicities of life become more apparent.
The Racing Car
Two nights ago, on Tuesday, I felt rather drained after work. I was waiting at the bus stop when my thoughts turned to my writing. My spirits fell as I found I had no drive nor inspiration. Just then, a car daringly sped through a red light and raced off, my synchronicity radar tingling.
Last night, I felt further drained from work, contradicting my desire to keep my writing going so as to keep up the continuum of these diary entries. When I fell asleep, I dreamt that I was in a car with a man who seemed to symbolize the epitome of a crystallized writer, one who could write in any state of mind, come rain or shine. I am similarly always productive as a musician but as a writer, I still require inspiration. In the dream, this man is behind the wheel and he is driving us through a roadblock. A policeman motions to stop the car, but the man dismisses his demands and speeds off, leaving the cop behind us screaming as we race through the streets. This seemed to represent placing full control in the hands of the assertive conscious self, symbolizing the extreme masculine side of consciousness that neglects and rejects all order but those of its own choosing.
When I awoke, life was playing a strange tune: I was still experiencing the movement of the racing car except that it seemed as if my consciousness itself was shifting. In addition, this movement was being pictorially visualized with my inner eye as the long, broad brush-strokes of the paintings I've been creating lately on my computer. Indeed, I have been able to train myself lately to heighten my sensitivity to color so that the slightest brush-stroke affects a discernable movement in my consciousness, the aim being to create imagery that moves one towards a higher state of mind.
The Leaping Whale
The dream last Friday was quite mind boggling. I was stationed at a coastal town with what seemed to be a group of military personnel. We were all intently watching the sea which was calm but very opaque. All of a sudden a big whale leaped into the air some 500 meters and crashed down onto the houses in the town, violently lashing about and causing incredible damage before diving back into the sea. It did this repeatedly and when I was able to scrutinize the shape of the whale, I found that it resembled the paintings I published last month that tried to depict the amazing speed and vitality of some of my higher states of mind.
In my inventory of dream symbolism, creatures from the sea represent elements from the subconscious, as was also the interpretation of Carl Jung. The damaging effects of high-speed oscillations and bombarding, seemingly contradictory currents of energy were quite clearly depicted in this dream and this can also be related with my dream of the mirrored restaurant in which the hostess advised not to be overwhelmed with the complexity caused by all the reflections. This kind of energy is indeed detrimental when I have not reached my higher states, which are light-hearted, selfless, and possessing a great deal of sobriety. I dreamt this dream on Friday after a full week of work, while I was trying to balance work with receiving inspiration for my writing. That day, a series of events took place, one after another, which brought up some very personal struggles which I will not go into here. They seemed to lash at me just as the whale did in the dream, damaging and dismantling my ego.
That weekend, I went to my parents' home town for the weekend. All went well, but the bed in which I slept, which used to be in the same position as where I slept during my high school years, was moved to a different location in the same room. I have always been quite sensitive with respect to the position of my bed in any room with which I am very familiar. This new position gave me some very strange dreams that seemed to be related to struggles I had not dealt with since high school, and I awoke feeling very weak.
The next day I went into work and there was much drama going on, some of which was directed against me. I simply felt devastated and powerless. By this time, I was still stubbornly hunting for inspiration for my writing, even though I was too distracted to get very far. Because of my weakened state, I decided to give up and let go entirely. The rest of the week at work offered me a crescendo of drama but, having no more need of engaging my anima, I felt fine and solid, one night working a twelve hour shift without it even phasing me in the least. I now understand this falling out from my writing as having been depicted by my vision of the pegasus that ended up being consumed by the black hole. The part of that vision which became dark and foreboding depicted surroundings that looked like splintered rock, i.e. fragmentation. This goes to show that engaging my anima and keeping the connection to my subconscious open at the improper time can invite in elements of the dark side which instantiate contradictory and dissonant energy that leaves my psyche dismantled.
Syria and Israel
I've been somewhat disturbed by the news lately. I've been having a vision which I cannot shake off that shows a war between Israel and Syria. This vision first surfaced during the Hizbulla-Israel war and when that one ended I was relieved that it was proven wrong. In the last several days, however, Israeli warplanes have penetrated Syria and they attacked an army base there. Over the last few days, the vision unfolded its logic to me and showed the archetypical patterns taking place. I will recount that logic even though I am not fully convinced of it and these ideas should be taken with a grain of salt; they could just be reflections of my own psyche projected upon the situation in the Middle East. Notice that because I am Lebanese, I can only envision the situation from the perspective of the Lebanese; I do not know of the archetypes in which the Israelis and the Syrians are involved.
The Lebanese can be regarded as a people who are fed up with war to the maximum. Even though I cannot speak for everyone, there is a deeply rooted bias towards peace that developed as a result of the civil war, the Hizbullah-Isreal war, and the seemingly endless political turmoil that plagues the country. There is also the resilience and the almost indifferent behaviour of many people even during very troubled times. It seems like there is much desire albeit, unconscious in the culture, to continue strengthening this form of resilience at all odds.
A war between Syria and Israel, Lebanon's two neighboring countries, would arouse much fear of the spread of that war into Lebanon. But, the bias of the Lebanese towards peace would continue to prevail and uphold the country's well being, allowing it to shine beautifully over time as a result of the momentum built by the regularized desire towards peace. The country's main obstacle is the lack of unity across religious sects and the polarization between pro-Syria and anti-Syria ideologies. The development of the bias towards unity is paramount and the struggles that ensue will most likely oscillate back and forth between an accentuation of that struggle and its temporary relief. But, Lebanon has a high chance of acting as the Yin of the Yang (or the Yang of the Yin) with respect to the conflicts in the Middle East.
The Swirling Waters
After taking a break from all writing and artistic pursuits this week, I was able to dive back in without a problem on Friday night. However, late that evening, despite being inspired to write some more, I decided to set up some new hardware on my computer at home instead, which took all my time and I then went straight to sleep.
I had the following dream: Out in the sea, there were whirlpools that somehow existed in a contained manner so that they were stationary, regular, and tame, similar to the pocket hurricane idea in my fiction. These whirlpools were curiously called the "swirling waters" and this intrigued me because, in the Ra Material, Carla, the instrument, was repeatedly advised to use a specific type of bathtub therapy called the swirling waters for her arthritis condition. In the dream, however, these stationary whirlpools were meant as docking points for boats and people lived in them. I was somewhat of a vagabond character and I decided to maneuver my small boat into one of them and make it my home. The dream ended in the climax of being scolded by a woman who was apparently the landlady saying that I could not continue living there until I paid my rent.
Paid my rent? What did that mean? I wonder if that referred to my coming home all inspired but working on my computer hardware project instead of my writing. There is an obvious correlation here between the swirling waters, hurricane thinking, and the concept of the kundalini or upward spiraling light. That these were homes inside the sea (which usually depicts the unconscious) is an interesting twist. But, indeed, the movements in consciousness which I have been talking about originate in the subconscious, or at least the conditioning to enable the movement starts there. That they were given the same term as the healing method for Carla's arthritis presents a mystery which could shed light on her arthritic condition, not sure if it still exists. In my opinion, a stiffness in the joints occurs in psychics when the speed of vibration of their channeling, which is typically higher than human, creates dissonance with the speed of vibration of the body, or the current personality residing in the body. But, this is not for me to say.
This morning, I must have hallucinated at least 50 paintings, some of them ethereal, most of them in the style of the paintings I've been making on the computer lately:
Click on the image for full size.
Click on the image for full size.
Click on the image for full size.
Click on the image for full size.
Click on the image for full size.
I also hallucinated the vision of one of my long and broad brush-strokes, which, to me, referred to the racing car dream representing an overly assertive proclivity. The scene then switched to what appeared to be an image of the eclipse of the sun and then I saw the face of a man. His skin started to harden into rock and splinter just like the landscape of the pegasus vision when it turned dark and foreboding. The man also started slipping away to the left, the negative side.
In color theory, opposite colors in the color wheel are called complementary colors. I have been finding that complementary and other contrasting color combinations play a significant part in creating the effect of ethereality. One can compare the effect of consciousness seen side by side with the exploratary oscillations found in evolution-inspiring movements in consciousness. Since color is basically neutral in nature, opposed to the way we regard our experiences in life based on negatvie/positive, good or bad, happy or sad, color in art is a form of all-joyful, playful, and light-hearted adventure in oscillation. In this manner, art can be an extremely useful tool in understanding the balancing process on am intuitive level. And artwork that evokes feelings of ethereality can show the heightened balancing of the enlightenment process.
I woke up this morning thinking that the anima is a perfectly functioning portion of the psyche because its very nature is to follow the laws of nature. Thus, it is the deeply rooted proclivity of the conscious self which should be tuned for a healthy relationship as opposed to applying any kind of conscious-self directed influence.
On a similar note, I have witnessed some very feminine women exhibit leaps of insight whose depth of wisdom betrays an archetypal order, capable of setting aright, or completely derailing, an entire system of philosophical thought laboriously constructed by the most talented logician, and done so with the mental equivalent of a whimsical gesture, a marginal flick of the wrist or the toss of a flock of hair. Such power, exhibited with such simplicity and grace, is seldom appreciated by the male, for lack of understanding or otherwise.
As if in response to such ideas, today was a typically difficult Monday due to the stark contrast between the transitory and hollow experiences at work and the magical heights of the weekend, which seemed to open portals of thought and imagery pregnant with the most delicious "human" experience. The transition was like being in one of Rome's beautiful cathedrals, finding a crack in the wall, and staring at it for 8 hours. It is not too difficult to find the humor in our contemporary existence. But, while I was at work, the anima was indeed alive and kicking, and synchronistically, the computer program I was working on logged the following message over and over and over again: NOT_STOPPABLE,NOT_PAUSABLE,IGNORES_SHUTDOWN. Fine. I got frustrated at our development team overseas, which I now regret because I kind of let them have it, which I never do, always careful to stay away from the corrupting ways of the business world; I felt like an agent of the negative side. Not that I really let them have it, but for my standards it is was truly overboard. The residues of frustration were carried with me to a restaurant in which the beautiful, flirtatious waitress handed me a tiny black desert plate after dinner. It consisted of a small, round cookie covered with powdered sugar which spilled over to the side. When I ate the cookie, the black hole that was left behind looked like an eclipse of the sun, just like yesterday's vision!
I am surprised at myself for having handled the disciplinary action towards our development team the way I did, for it was not done in a constructive manner, but with an overly harsh attitude which not only spreads negativity but causes a backlash reaction. My "loss of positive polarity", as Ra would say, is quite marked and obvious; my inspiration is gone, I had trouble remembering my dreams, feel fragmented, confused, so on and so forth.
The Slingshot Dynamic
The discomfort and unease I felt last night and this morning because of my exaggeratedly negative behaviour against the lead of our overseas development team was quickly washed away when I reconciled with him over online chat this morning. Even though he is just a professional acquaintance, the dispute's end hoisted me into fantastic spirits abound with inspiration so that at work throughout the day, even though the job demanded my focused attention, many delicious ideas circled about my mind in the background.
Indeed, I had not felt so good in weeks. And this kind of oscillation into the dark side yesterday proved in the end to have the opposite, slingshot-like effect of swinging me deeper into the positive side. My current theory behind this kind of movement in consciousness is the following: My personality is already biased towards the positive, and deeply so, despite the fact that I waver from time to time because of life's struggles. The bias towards positivity holds me rooted to that polarity and as I got drawn yesterday into the negative side, the movement away from my base built up enough potential that when I finally released that potential, I was swung back to the positive with full force. This slingshot dynamic of the psyche especially occurs after the regularization of a personality with respect to the specific axis of polarity involved in the movement. This is because a temporary deviation needs to come with the necessary strings attached so that one gets subsequently pulled back towards the original position. This movement differs from the type of shift which can be described to be an exploratory oscillation, which goes hand in hand with ambivalence.
Click on the image for full size.
The Chakras and Creativity
Another perspective on this subject deals with chakras. For those who do not have a working knowledge of chakras and the dynamics of energy flow and blockage, I believe one of the most instructive introductory examples illustrates what occurs in our being when we get into quarrels with others. Holding a grudge or similar strong negative emotion towards someone with whom we have come into dispute typically creates a marked feeling of inner dissonance and discomfort, whereby the natural psychological processes now feel clumsy and disjointed. This is especially evident when the other self is a very close acquaintance. The moment we resolve the disagreement and become reconciled, there is a sudden sense of relief and revitalization in our being, a sense of harmony, ease, and fluidity of motion. That which occurs during dispute is a blockage of the energy flow through our chakras, and when the grudge or negativity is released, the energy flows freely again, the chakras are functioning well once more.
The fourth chakra in Ra's system of thought, also called the green ray, is the energy center of unconditional love, acceptance, and understanding. When this chakra is functioning well, I typically feel as if I am soaring like an eagle, emitting a brilliance that is transmuted from its original, raw love-radiance form into the inspired creativity that funnels into my projects. Ra once described the green ray center as the "springboard to primary blue" which is the energy center of freely given communication, or the offering of "light" without seeking a reward in return. The blue ray is that which is activated within the talented artists, writers, teachers, musicians, and the like. When these centers of energy are properly functioning, my productivity and inspiration levels in my creative pursuits seem endless and I never tire. At times, I return home from a draining week of work on Friday night and my creative output remains solid way past midnight. Compare that with averaging one or two inspired hours per week back while I was in college. With my extremely busy schedule, I don't have time to fuss about with dry spells; put my pen to paper and I leave myself no choice but to produce. Therefore, honing in that skill to achieve maximal up-time requires developing much self-discipline over the years and this has been largely based upon solidifying an unconditional acceptance towards others which then quite simply results in greater understanding, and even the natural blooming of love for whoever repeatedly crosses my path.
It would be far too simplistic, however, to say that all talented artists have the first five energy centers well-balanced, and especially delusional to think that they each are crystallized in unconditional love for their fellow man. Indeed, some of the greatest artists in history betray a very cruel and selfish side, although I believe these traits are typically accentuated distortions that lie on a bed of greater than average ethical standards. The factors which determine the free flow of inspiration are numerous. However, when analyzing the personality of an artist, let's say, in relation to her/his creative output, one needs to be aware that we are not only talking about inspiration but also one should consider the crystallization of inspiration into a skillful talent that is readily available come rain or shine. Those artists who have developed such talents need only peace of mind, time, and focus. And inspiration can come during moments of peace, or whenever life presents the opportunity to enjoy an inner sense of balance.
Speaking for myself, when I do find myself in a dry spell, I often perform the following trick: If I am stuck in a rut while making music, for example, I pick a close acquaintance of mine whose taste in music I know well, and I pretend that I am composing music specifically to elevate the state of mind of that someone. This feeling of giving and helping purifies my insides, points my focus in the direction of service, and activates my green ray which in turn alights the blue. In addition to the mechanics of chakra balancing, as Ra points out, those whose intentions to serve are pure gather towards them a mass of light.
While I was in college, my personality could be judged to be fairly positively polarized when it came to dealing with others. However, there was certainly room for refinement and I believe that one of the most helpful aspects of solitude in attaining my inspiration was that I rarely interacted with others and therefore my energy centers suffered minimum blockage of that type. I definately did get numerous hints from my subconscious, however, that I had to put an end to my feelings of annoyance which were aroused by the presence of other people who I felt were superficial. One of the most blatant of these messages I intuitively wrote in big block letters in one of my paintings: "BREAK MIDDLE FINGER FOR SUPPORT!" The avoidance of interacting with others in order to retain the higher state of mind is, in my opinion, one of the main reasons why many spiritually-minded people exhibit tendencies to live like hermits.
At the heart of the spiritual, or mystical, experience is the sense of one-ness, or at-one-ment with the world. During my college years, I had numerous experiences in which I felt everything around me was in fact portions of my own psyche. These were not states of mind that were delusional. On the contrary, they were accompanied by an unparralleled clarity of thought and judgement, and an awareness that stretched its wings far beyond the boundaries of my tiny, human existence.
I did not truly understand the concept of one-ness, however, till the Hurricane Period hit me just before the year 2000. This three-week period was jam-packed with "events" and it left me 100% busy trying to keep up with all the insights and messages that were surfacing in my mind as well as all the shifts in consciousness.
One day, I was standing in my living room and the series of revelations I was having was truly blowing me away. The data coming from (or through) my unconscious became louder and louder as a result since my level of inspiration was extremely high. It got to the point where I was seeing vision after vision of such intensity that they reminded me of a Hollywood trailer for an action movie. I was viewing oscillations between love and hate, kindness and cruelty, and so on. And when I was finally completely in a trance, the following words spilled into me like honey: "Go the way of the Buddha, brother". And I broke down and cried for the first time in many years.
Nearly a minute or so went by and my need to shed tears ended as suddenly as it began. And only a split second after that, my phone began to ring. I was not in any mood to talk but the timing of the call seemed to be too much of a coincidence so I answered it anyways.
It turned out to be the bank for my student loan and they were calling with the odd purpose of assuring me that my loan payments were perfectly on time! Now, how often does one get a call like that?
It was a blatantly obvious synchronicity, but what did it all mean? Let us attempt to interpret this event as one does a dream and try to gleam the symbolism behind it.
My student years, in addition to giving my career a jump start, were a time of solitary initiation for me, a focus on achieving purity and the heights. It was a period in which I avoided others and the lessons learned from interacting with others in order to develop a blueprint of my psyche in its purest and most essential form. This avoidance of gregarious contact accumulated something like a loan of lessons to teach me the manner in which I should interact with others. The arrival at the revelation that I must go the way of the Buddha, to find the understanding and compassion for other selves, was the intersecting point between my solitay quest for inner purity and its gregarious equivalent.
What followed were a thread of experiences that made me glimpse the reasons why people were the way they were. Whenever I focused my attention at any one of the many workmates that I knew, my state of mind began to shift dramatically. It would take a swing to the left and then a swing to the right, to loosen me up, and then keep shifting in a unique manner so as to eventually settle down in a state in which I was able to better understand the proclivity of that specific person. In such a manner, I went through one by one the people I knew until my visions showed me a stream of bodies flowing down into the Great River of Humanity. This set of experiences taught me, or, to put it more accurately, jammed down my throat, the lesson that we are all one, that we are all but versions of each other and that the way of the Buddha was the way of compassion and understanding.
From that point on, it became quite clear that harboring negative judgements about anyone was completely NOT ALLOWED. This attitude was especially difficult to adopt because I was dealing with an extremely tumultuous friendship with someone who had temporarily polarized into the extreme negative. I remember many times unable to fall asleep because I hallucinated his face directly in front of mine for hours into the night as if I were staring into a mirror. My visions pushed me endlessly to accept him for who he was and any negative judgement against him turned immediately against myself. In this manner, I found myself spiralling down the path towards the archetype of self-destruction.
Eventually, I visited my old college town for the weekend in order to return to the sense of purity that I used to feel there. Throughout my stay, it felt as if the town rejected my presence and none of the cherished states I used to know would surface. Finally, the last hour came and I was about to leave town with a sense of complete defeat when a vision popped into my head, showing me my friend-enemy and then the words "love everyone". I saw with great clarity the poison of my hatred and I threw away all my negative emotions directed at him. The town then bloomed with the unique beauty of the inner-life richness I used to know so well and I felt as if I were still living there.
From that point, I could honestly say that unconditional love was a significant element of my persona, well integrated. And it took an intense bout with the negative side in order to spark such a fire.
Dismantling Shifts in Color
While I was readying myself for sleep last night, out of nowhere I got a vision of a monster-like face accompanied by a strange roar. I felt a surge of fear hit me with a strangely powerful force that seemed to originate from a bottomless pit of negativity. My my my, what amazing strength accompanies these psychic attacks! The vision and roar repeated itself and I felt myself being absorbed into the dark side, the world around me shifting and my thoughts turning sour. I mustered up my unconditional acceptance and love and did my best to direct it at the vision. Slowly, I returned to normal and the inner darkness subsided.
What fascinated me about this experience was the color scheme used in the monster image. The background was orange and the monster was purple. The two colors side by side created a vibrating effect, a dizzying, optical illusion typical of some color combinations. I show this effect in the image below:
Just as the leaping whale in my dream last week was rendered with sporadic lines in such a way as to express violently rapid movements that were dismantling and deleterious to the ego, so does this color combination produce an effect of confusing dissonance in the eye of the beholder. The curiosity such a visual effect can typically arouse highlights the alluring nature of the negative side when expertly presented.
Explore the Prophecy
I bumped into the following flyer posted on a pole this morning.
I wouldn't have thought anything of the flyer had it not been posted en route of my favorite walk that I try to take every Sunday morning after breakfast, and had it not contained the image of a lion with wings, which resembled my vision of the horse with wings I had at the beginning of this month. My vision showed the pegasus starting off in an ethereal setting and then flying down into a black hole amidst dark and foreboding surroundings. This seemed to predict my own psychological adventure over the following couple weeks in that my visions and dreams led me down dark avenues of experience till my ego felt dismantled and weak to the core and then finally the dreams and visions themselves died down. [10/09/2007: To this day, the visions have been few and far and between. My dreams have also taken on very superficial and seemingly random characteristics.] And then here I bump into this flyer which said to "Explore the Prophecy" and instead of a winged horse, which could be seen to represent the anima taking flight, depicted a winged lion, the leader of the animal kingdom, which seems to symbolize the alpha-male taking flight.
Let us ideate about the mechanics behind this synchronicity, if indeed it is one. I would hesitate to entertain the notion that the flyer's creation was itself a part of the underlying order behind my spiritual development. I would be more inclined to think that my inner self, or whoever/whatever was responsible for my Pegasus vision, because it exists in a realm outside of time as we know it, was already aware of the high likelihood that I would stumble upon the flyer since it was taped to a pole that was en route of one of my habitual walks in the city. Since having the Pegasus vision, I had been wondering why the horse had wings, that if the vision had shown a horse without wings the message behind it would have been transmitted just as clearly; the magical nature of the horse was already quite obvious, since the image of the horse gave me the feeling of being larger than life, or archetypal. Seeing the lion with wings leads me to believe that the wings on the horse were simply a form of synchronistic conditioning with the intention of making the connection with the flyer a lot more clear so that I would pay proper attention. To accumulate the coincidental data even further, the pole with the flyer was right in front of an African-American church from which I occasionally enjoy hearing very passionate religious singing and shouting. It always reminded me of one of my favorite CDs I bought a few years ago which contains samples of people singing in the same manner. And the name of the CD was "Discipline". Am I reading too much into this or am I gleaming the mathematically enigmatic intelligence of the way innerscape content and synchronistic events intersect with our daily lives?
Having just written the last paragraph, I feel what I call a "spiral tug" on my idea that the wings in the Pegasus vision did not carry anything but an intrinsic highlighting effect on the lion flyer synchronicity. It is likely that the wings had the double purpose in this case, in that the wings represent the anima attempting to take flight on its own. Interesting to note that the winged lion was not the only winged animal in the flyer, but was accompanied by a winged tiger as well, in addition to a bear. And should I wonder about the coincidence between the word flyer and the messages depicting flight? Goodness, how the mind can really start to spin trying assimilate these ideas.
My dreams and visions concerning the anima have died down lately and I wonder if this is because I have reached a balanced understanding on the subject: Although seemingly whimsical because its dynamic nature appears erratic and unpredictable when compared to the steady, sober logic of the masculine side, the anima is a perfectly functioning portion of the psyche although it only represents one side of the picture. The well-fitted efficiency of the male-female couple relationship as seen in the husband-and-wife team who get along can be a simple, though exemplary model for the conscious self and anima/animus configuration.
The vision of the winged horse, if indeed it symbolized the anima, showed the deleterious effects of it flying on its own, and the ego-dismantling dreams were the result of a subconscious that had manifested out of control. On the same note, mutual cooperation of the anima and the conscious self, side by side, would have changed my dramatic behaviour with my overseas team at work the other day. My frustration, full blown due to an anima that was alive and kicking, was a perfectly natural and therefore necessary reaction to their actions which had become more and more unprofessional of late. The conscious, logical side wanted to retain the momentum of the positive working relationship but the anima would not have it, affecting a reaction which albeit de-constructive was necessary for upholding the harmony which had lost its original foundation. Had the masculine assertive side also been fully activated, however, the necessary stoic sobriety and calculating mind would have transformed the frustration into clear, assertive, and concise actions that would have corrected the issue without the negative drama and its derivative, chaotic results.
I do believe that throughout all this time I've missed the main point behind the vision that came to me that morning accompanied with the word "achieve micro-buoyancy". I show it below once again.
The vision does show the anima and the conscious self in a cooperative proclivity, each stemming towards its own direction in a properly polarized manner. That the conscious, masculine self stems higher than the anima is perfectly logical since the male is by nature configured in the masculine fashion, whether it be for reasons that are sexual, physical, chemical, psychological, or what have you. What I have come to believe is the main meat behind the vision, however, is that the simultaneous existence of the two polarities within the self is what generates the buoyancy, whereas, intuitively, one would expect the balanced male to be only slightly masculine, while the balance female only slightly feminine. The vision, on the other hand, encourages the two natures to be fully activated and living side by side as a cooperating duality within the self.
In the image above, the faded lines that seem to generate a sense of motion were not my own additions, but came with the vision. These lines suggest the instantiation of the upward-spiraling light, or the kundalini uncoiling like a snake through the energy centers.