Roche Miette Newsletter
Quarterly of Roche Miette Association,
No. 10, August 2004
Editorial - by Piotr Rajski
Back to Roche Miette - by Randy Iwanciwski.
Remembers - by David Huggett
Schweibenalp, the Center of Unity - by Pritam.
Interfaith Encounter Association - by Piotr Rajski
The Key to Love - by Daya Devi-Doolin
One Light - by Jeffrey Solomon
Between the dichotomy of 'negative' and 'positive' - by David Huggett
One God Notes - by Pritam
What is Roche Miette Association
Call for Papers
This summer issue of the Roche Miette Newsletter (RMN) brings some stories about vacation, being outdoors and traveling. Randy Iwanciwski shares his experiences from Roche Miette Pilgrimage 2004. As I couldn't help him on account of my injured foot, Randy took this time a smaller group of enthusiasts. I share some of my thoughts from the visit to Schweibenalp, Swiss Center of Unity. The place is beautiful not only because of the surroundings but also thanks to the energy of interfaith tolerance, which is one of the ideals of our Roche Miette Association. These ideals are also manifested by Interfaith Encounter Association in Israel. In this issue you will find some information about their activities.
As in the past issues you will find some beautiful poetry by David Huggett. I chose a fragment of his "Progress Notes," which could be interpreted as expression of love for a woman but also for a mountain. I feel extremely blessed by David's friendship, his gentle spirit and extraordinary talent to dress in words the very mysteries of human existence. I hope he will fare well through his sickness and join us next year on the Roche Miette Mountain.
As psychologist I have difficulty resisting materials that point to the power of human thought. In this issue you will find an excerpt from Daya-Devi Doolin's book: Super Vita-Minds: How To Stop Saying I Hate You…To Yourself. Interesting are Doolin's observations on interplay between thoughts and unconditional love. Father of two young adults I find this art of practicing unconditional love to be especially challenging (!). Also Jeffrey Solomon shares the philosophy of the power of human mind in many of his Reflections. I used one of them that stresses the issue of religious unity - we all come from the same Light.
This philosophy, however, or perhaps some simplifications of it, appear to be the theme of our first polemic. David Huggett decided to respond to Jeffrey Solomon's reflection on Finding Personal Truth, which was published in the previous issue (Roche Miette Newsletter, No.9, March 2004). Boy, what a sharp pen he has! I hope readers will find this exchange of thoughts on the power of human thought to be ... thought stimulating.
I decided to share this issue of RMN with many recipients of One God
Notes, practically doubling the circulation. I have realized that RMN has
changed over time. Initially it was intended as vehicle of communication
for those interested in hiking Roche Miette Mountain. Now we give more
information of a general spiritual character. Thus it can be of interest
to wider audiences. RMN can be a medium of expression for those receiving
One God Notes. Please, feel free to share your thoughts or submit materials
that you find inspiring for you. Perhaps others could take advantage of
them. See "Call for Papers" section for more details.
Back to Roche Miette.
by Randy Iwanciwski
Last year's fire in Jasper National Park did not allow me to lead a
group to Roche Miette. I did venture with a group this past June.
An early morning blurry-eyed rise gives away to the blue skies that you
see as you begin this journey. The trail head was reached at 7A.M.
and with prayers for: a safe trip, a deceased family member and dedication
of this hike for a friend, off we went.
Photo by Randy Iwanciwski
Four of us in total today, a good-sized group for his hike. As you proceed you see the mighty Roche in the distance calling you along. It sits silently waiting and gently guiding you as you catch glimpses of it through the forest.
As the first hour and a half passes you have gained great elevation and now the magnificent Roche reveals itself in all its glory. I feel humbled at this time that God has created this place and has given me the time and energy to experience it. You do feel small and overwhelmed; one cannot get away form this. You are lessened, possibly put back in your place. On the other hand you are made aware that you are part of something greater. A cycle of life, a place in time to be a part of, an active part of God's creation.
This trip always inspires me to leave my otherwise busy life in the valley and to listen to Gods words in the wind, rock, sky, soil and sometimes storms. I believe we all need this solitude in our lives so to recharge. We all have means to do so if we take the time. I have this wonderful space to hike and to be refreshed here at this mountain.
Ascent above the tree line gives you a sense of vulnerability, but it allows you to draw on some of that inner strength that God has given each of us. The word ” Pilgrimage” really comes into play here. I feel that you must push yourself more than usual at times to answer what God is asking of you.
At two thirds of this hike you arrive at the “Saddle” where you can see where you have been and where you need to go. Not that you haven't accomplished a great feat just getting here, as some prefer to stop at this point. If you do choose to scramble, climb the bare rock and follow the Cairns of the path you will be rewarded with accomplishment, joy and emotional release. This is my experience every time. To see others respond to this place is very much part of why I enjoy guiding this trip.
The summit view again reinforces the fact that there is ”Greatness” much larger than us. A Creator that has chosen more for each of us to do in this lifetime rather than just think about ourselves. We must take care of each other, love one another and preserve the Earth. The Poor of this planet must be provided for as the resources of the Earth are for ALL!
Again at the summit I pray a prayer of thanksgiving and just rest in Gods grandeur and serenity.
Decent is just as exciting as ascent, you still must call on all of your energy to return. I feel that now I again have a newness of responsibility as I head to my valley home, to be a better friend, father, husband and person. This renewed spiritual joy must be transformed in actions as well as words to help others and to tell of Gods love for all of us.
It is simply not enough to hold onto these experiences, they must be shared with others. I do share these stories with those who do not or physically cannot climb. This is my way of allowing a small part of Gods word to be spread. I give to God and in return God gives to me, but God always overflows the gifts in abundance. Simply this Roche Miette trip is Gods way of dragging me out of my busy, selfish life and allowing me to regenerate spiritually, physically and emotionally. To share this with others is what I am called to do. I am trying to do Gods will.
What a gift I have been given! Thanks be to God!
and remembers, after ablutionsFrom "Progress Notes." To order call the author at (780) 414-1534, or write him at:
performed in the dawn, the love
of one special, dearI tasted her salt and marvelledRemembers, so long ago,
as the wind blew her hair
about her face, her eyes wide,
her kisses sweet
She danced with light and grace
through my days, and turned
to me for comfort in her night
he had asked her, in that northern land
of water and grass,
to accompany him:will you come with me
when the willow blooms
and shall we cross the river
below the town, when the willow
spills its honey on the heat?
And now that the ice is gone
shall our bones awaken?
How long for earth to thaw
and grow bold again?
And shall barley raise its golden head
and dream of loaves
as we, too, forget frost and snow
and dream of love again?
David Huggett describes himself as a West Coast writer transplanted to Edmonton via Nelson, British Columbia with periods of residence in Germany. He has worked as CBC broadcast journalist, university administrator and producer for the Alberta Book Fair Society. David served two years as Secretary for the Writers Guild of Alberta and participates in Edmonton's Stroll of Poets. His short stories have appeared in Minus Tides and Unpublished Fiction.
This summer I had a chance to travel a bit. In Poland, I visited the
Jasna Góra Sanctuary along with two Babaji's ashrams in Makolno
and Lanckorona. In Switzerland I celebrated the Gurupurnima (Hindu festival
during which respect is paid to one's spiritual teacher) in Schweibenalp,
the Center of Unity. I had an invitation to visit Schweibenalp in 1987.
However, at that time I lived in the communistic Poland, and the regime
simply didn't give us passports. I am glad things have changed since then.
The goat and the lion (West and East?), to use Babaji's metaphor, can now
drink from the same spring. Schweibenalp was also visited by my friends
from Poland, Radha and Paramand. Paramand kindly picked me up from the
Zurich Airport. We then went through some sort of karmic complications
and got lost in the darkness of the night around Schweibenalp. Paramand
among others had to back his car a few hundred meters on a narrow field
road when we faced a car coming from the opposite direction. Luckily, the
good spirits around the center took care of us and we completed our journey
view of the main lodge and some adjacent buildings.
Photo by Pritam.
Although Switzerland is not the cheapest place (coffee and donut cost me almost $10 in the airport; gasoline is also quite expensive), I can only say the best things about my stay in Schweibenalp. The place is beautiful and picturesque. The lodge offers simple but comfortable accommodation. Living at the highest floor gave also an ample training to my knees and ankles. And all those beautiful people from all over the world! This was quite a treat! There were over 200 people attending from Bali, Belgium, Croatia, England, Estonia, France, Germany, Holland, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand and United States. Most of them devotees of Haidakhan Babaji, many of whom had a chance to spend lots of time in Babaji's presence. Shri Har Govind, along with Pujari, Kharku, and many others happened to be the most inspiring instrumentalists, making our gatherings very lively, sometimes ecstatic. The stories shared by Gayatri Devi, Lok Nath and others brought back the flavor of times when Babaji was still with us in his human body.
Schweibenalp is one of those rare places where people of many religious backgrounds come to worship God and feel at home with each other. Buddhist, Christian, Hindu and Jewish groups come to pray here. They are likely attracted by the serenity of the surrounding and the warmth and hospitality of the personnel. Among them one has to mention Sundar, a Swiss psychiatrist, who has been animating the place for many years. His gentle spirit, kindness and enormous (clinical?) patience helps everyone to relax and get along with each other.
The program, already intense on account of daily aartis (ceremonial
singing), havans (fire ceremonies), satsangs (community gatherings) and
karma yoga (yoga of work), was also complemented by various entertaining
events. Among them the most impressive was a set of traditional South Indian
dances by Karin Uma Heck.
Uma has been studying classical Indian dance called Bharat Natyam since 1989 with several teachers. Her current teacher is Rajyashree Ramesh who lives in Berlin and has an Academy for Performing Arts&Dance Theater Productions (Info Natyam@aol.com). Uma made the dance examination called "Arangetram" in 1999.
Photo by Pritam.
I am not aware of any tradition to celebrate your spiritual teacher in Christianity, Judaism or Islam. If this is the case, we could perhaps derive some inspiration from Hinduism and do something nice (send a postcard?) to our spiritual directors (inspirators) around the Gurupurnima time next year.
There are many interfaith organizations around the world. I have always derived great inspiration by attending meetings of the Edmonton Interfaith for Education and Action. I had a chance to meet wonderful people of many faiths and establish a sense of security with them. The Edmonton group is so well organized and dynamic that its ex-President, Rev. Don Mayne, was called to serve as the President of the North America Interfaith Network (NAIN). I believe that this is all possible thanks to the tolerant values of Canadian society. Canada seems to be a blessed land where people of different faiths have been coexisting peacefully for many decades.
Imagine, however, trying to form an interfaith group in a country torn by strong religious tensions, war and violence. Palestine seems to be one of those lands. It is thus so much joyous to know that there are people willing to venture this kind of interfaith encounter in that part of the globe. For months I have been receiving reports of the Interfaith Encounter Association (IEA) in Israel. The group consists of representatives of all three Abrahamic faiths - Judaism, Christianity and Islam, but also Druze and Baha'i. They describe themselves as a "movement for peace, justice and sustainability in the Holy Land." They have organized 46 interreligious study sessions and 6 weekend retreats. Among the subjects discussed were: the issue of monotheism, extremism and tolerance, marriage, forgiveness and reconciliation, as seen from the perspective of all major religions. There are ten groups associated with the IEA that meet across the Holy Land for ongoing dialogue. There are also active groups of women and youth practicing interfaith encounter and communication.
Among the Board members are: Sr. Karmela Farrugia, Chair, Sheikh Muhammad Kiwan, Vice-Chair, Mr. Shlomo Alon, Vice-chair, Sheikh Ali Birani, Rabbi Dov Maimon, Ms. Ibtisam Mahamid, Deacon Eng. Jirias Mansour and Sheikh Tawfiq Salama. The works of IEA are animated by Dr.Yehuda Stolov who has recently received Ph.D. in Jewish Studies from Hebrew University.
Would you like to explore the activities of the group? Here is their address:
The Interfaith Encounter Association, P.O.Box 3814, Jerusalem 91037,
Phone: +972-2-6510520, Fax: +972-2-6510557,
You can join their e-mailing lists by sending a blank message to:
* In Israel (gets also invitations): firstname.lastname@example.org
* Abroad (gets reports only): email@example.com
One of the very basic keys is that thoughts are things. Thoughts are energy. They travel through timelessness into unlimited boundaries. They are what our belief and intent is composed of. They bring about our experiences that are the exact and immediate results of our thoughts. Nothing is accomplished, created or invented on this earth without the thought first. Napoleon Hill once said, "All that you can conceive, you can achieve.”
His son was born with no ears, but he was determined that his son would be able to hear. He was determined that he would find a way to make this happen. It did happen through his love, intent and believe.
Example: Thought = action = experience
Or Belief = action = result
Or Intent = action = result
There is no thought we can have that does not have a result or manifestation of that thought. Our belief behind the thought has given it power to manifest whatever it is that we believe. Our subconscious is our genie in manifesting anything that we want, need or believe, be it right or wrong. It is not a judge of what is right or wrong, it merely acts on our behalf and brings to us like a magnet all that we have placed into its hands to do. Life is not about arguing who is right or wrong. You can be right all the time but miserable because of your “rightness.” It is not important that you are right, but it is important that you be HAPPY!
Another very important and basic key is that no thought can come into our mind and occupy our attention except that we have chosen to entertain its presence. Everything is choice. If we want to believe something and believe it is right, no one can change our minds about it except we ourselves.
No one can put a thought in our mind that we are sick, or that we deserve to be sick except we ourselves. No one can put a thought in our minds that we are poor, our vision is bad and our body is ugly except we ourselves.
Another basis key is that we have to take charge of our thoughts at all times for there are no neutral thoughts. This means there is no thought we could ever have that would not bring about its causal results. This is an immutable universal law. If we have a thought that we realize could do us harm then we do have the power to say, “CANCEL, CANCEL, CANCEL.” And it will be cancelled throughout the universe with no negative effect whatsoever upon us.
Another basic key to living a life full of simplicity is that of being grateful for everything that life gives us what it does because it does so according to our thoughts. Gratitude de-crystallizes all the negative energy we might have stored up in our bodies. The energy might have been stored as arthritis, tumors, cancer, AIDS, gallstones, high blood pressure or diabetes as a result of our crystallized fears.
Living a life that is simple filled with love and happiness and not filled with stress, strife, fear, hatred or anxiety will bring you many blessings that have been hidden from your awareness. The way to live that simple life is to use the Key of Love, unconditional love and not conditional love.
What is unconditional love? It is love that requires nothing of another. It does not judge another as stupid. It does not judge another as threatening. It does not judge another as incompetent. It does not judge. It does not draw energy from another for its own purposes.
It does draw its energy from whatever name you choose to call it, Universal Source, Prime Creator, God, Goddess or Supreme Being.
Unconditional love towards everyone and everything will bring you the magical results that you are seeking. The intent behind your unconditional love creates the action you must take that will bring about the good you deserve. Everyone gets back love only when they send out and radiate total unconditional love to themselves and others. There will be no mistake as to what type of love comes back to them because their intent is not to harm or take energy from another for promoting themselves higher than another.
What is unconditional love? It's total and complete forgiveness of others and our self. It is knowing there is no need for forgiveness in the first place because we merely saw the situation through conditional love eyes and we were mistaken about what actually happened. It is not demanding. It is patience. Unconditional love allows everyone the right to make the decisions that are best for her. And it approves of their choice because it knows all decisions are based on the information we have at the time of making the choice.
It knows that there are no neutral thoughts and that thoughts are things. It knows that thoughts are energy and have form. It knows that whatever we wish to create in our lives shall be done because of our intent (belief) behind the thought. Unconditional love allows our loved ones the opportunity to experience the consequence of their choices whether it feels that it would be right or wrong for them or not good for them to experience the consequences.
What is conditional love? It is a conditional love that only loves when someone does something for you to “deserve” your love. Conditional love gives its power over to some other object or another person and resents it later on. This strong energy towards that person or condition takes lodging somewhere within the body and multiplies.
I always say to unwanted thoughts a statement that comes from A Course In Miracles, “The Holy Spirit is my only invited guest,” and I also know and remember that my human creations have no power over me no matter how real I try to make them. Our thoughts have power. They are the spoken Word and that Word is our gift from God. The faith and energy we put behind our every intention gives the goals the power to manifest boldly and securely in our lives. What is more difficult to manifest in our lives? Nothing, if we but believe that it is possible.
It was my intention to sit in the seat of receptivity of my highest good which entailed a baby with Chris, a better place to live, debts paid off, a metaphysical center which people could come and get support in their healing, a church, a computer to do the necessary books, articles and newsletters God was directing me to write.
Believe that you too, can make your life a blessing for everyone you come in contact with as well. I am positive you will be inspired by the action and power behind your intention of love. You will see your dreams manifest in ways you could not have imagined.
The article, The Key of Love, is excerpted from Ms. Daya Devi-Doolin’s
book, Super Vita-Minds: How To Stop Saying I Hate You…To Yourself,
available online www.amazon.com; Bn.com and Borders.com. Worldwide
shipping is available. You can order a book by sending Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
or calling (386) 532-5308. Retail cost is $21.95 plus shipping &
handling. Daya Devi-Doolin, Author, Reiki Master Teacher, Hatha Yoga
Instructor and Lecturer is Co-Founder of The Doolin Healing Sanctuary with
her husband Chris. They live in Deltona, FL.
"Whether you worship Christ, Krishna, Kali or Allah, you actually worship the one Light that is also in you, since It pervades all things. Everything originates in Light, everything in its essence is Light" - Anandamayi Ma ( Indian Saint)With enlightenment that proceeds from knowledge, God realization becomes not only possible, it is desirable. All human kind has the ability to attain the God realization of the ascended Masters. Jesus told his followers " All that I do shall you do - and more". The lesson is that Jesus was here to show us, by example, the way. The way is to be like Him and to attain ascension and holiness in our lifetimes. Buddha likewise proclaimed a similar message. Give up the illusion of the material life and aspire to the greatness within yourself.
This is also the lesson that Babaji taught. Babaji, the Yogi Christ of India being taught that we should aspire to our highest self. The message of Babaji was that one should practice Truth, Simplicity and Love. He embodied this ideal in his life and by example taught others. Babaji displayed many miracles as recently as the 1980's, such as feeding multitudes from a small amount of food, appearing before crowds in two cities at the same time. The divine attributes he showed us was not done to impress us and therefore Babaji always emphasized the importance of our being responsible for our own actions and to be conscious, brave in our convictions and to not follow like sheep.
When we journey to India, as we do each year, to Babaji's ashrams (hermitage)
in the Himalayan foothills the overpowering realization is the Truth of
the nature around us. The simplicity and the richness of a simple lifestyle
in the mountains. And the overwhelming love shared by pilgrims towards
each other, even though we come from every corner of the earth.
"One Light" is a slightly modified version of Mr. Solomon's Reflection #116. These Reflections are excerpted from his book "Playing in the Mind of God," which is available online at www.PlayingintheMindofGod.com and at www.amazon.com World-wide shipping is available. You can receive "Reflections" by sending e-mail to: email@example.com
Tel USA (727) 363.0800; Tel UK (44) 0871 - 871.2971; Fax USA (727) 363.1500
I confess I have neither read nor ordered the book, nor am I likely to do so. Initially I read the piece, as I had read the rest of the publication, with interest but with no unusual critical attention. Afterwards, a sense of disturbance, perhaps even of anger, compelled me to reread the article. It seems to me now to contain a serious misjudgment. I shall do my best to persuade other readers to revisit the article with aroused faculties of perception. Finding my name and work linked with Jeffrey Solomon's in the Editor's esteem, for which I thank him, complicates matters but does not lessen the provocation.
To be honest, I can explain my dis-ease with the piece very simply. After all, I do not want to acknowledge my ‘Personal Lie,’ because I am one of those who epitomize the ‘Death Urge.’ About eighteen months ago, you see, I was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Apparently the condition is treatable but not curable in adults, according to medical orthodoxy. In an age in which personal accountability is taken to mean that we are responsible for our thoughts even before we formulate them I am required to deal with people who demand to know why I am ill with cancer. Surely I smoked; therefore I deserve to die, I brought it all down on myself.
Fortunately the medical staff are more humane. They know I lived as a child in a lead-zinc smelter town (Trail, B.C.) downwind from one of the filthiest nuclear reactors on record (Hanford, Washington). As a child I was proud to be a smoke-eater, as we called ourselves. Later, I worked in a paint factory and lived in or near pulp mills towns. Presently I live in a city dependent on petro-chemicals.
Environmental factors, tragic personal flaws; I am willing to acknowledge all of the contributing elements, including the fact that medical science does not have one word to say about why some people are afflicted with lymph cancer while others, no less reprobate, are not.
Thus I conclude my preamble. In beginning my reading of ‘Finding Personal Truth’ I wish to make clear that I believe in the value of criticism, if it is patient. Let's start with a phrase: “Few people are consciously aware . . .”; that is, most of us are simply unaware, consciously or otherwise. Those fortunate few who possess awareness are entrusted with a mission: it is their job to expose the ‘negative personal beliefs’ of the majority.
Our beliefs, it is to be noted, are fundamental. They lie “at the very core” of our being. In the case of the unaware majority these beliefs take the form of lies. Lies must be exposed, or excavated, presumably by specialists trained to do so. Our lies must be pried from “below conscious awareness.”
The excavator is a modest fellow, it seems. He informs us that even he discovers his own limiting thoughts from time to time. If he is afflicted, then what hope for the rest of us? Already I am beginning to challenge the dichotomy of ‘negative’ and ‘positive’ which shapes the piece.
The dichotomy is extended in the ‘above-below’ imagery of ‘conscious’ and ‘unconscious’ through to the personal ‘lie’ or personal ‘truth.’
Dualistic categories, to be sure, allow us to think in simple, seemingly irrefutable patterns. That is, they function very nicely until we reject them. They leave very little room for argument, debate or discussion. A depressingly familiar rhetoric emerges from a dualistic world view: one is ‘for’ or one is ‘against.’ We have seen time and again where that leads.
In terms of health rather than geopolitics, those who will not allow their personal lie to be excavated will be taken care of presumably by a natural mechanism called the Death Urge. Operative here is the proposition ‘life is good, death is bad.’ It is as though Jeffrey Solomon wants us to forever flip heads in a coin toss and never the obverse, tails. We must always be the winners, never the losers, the prosperous rather than the indigent, the successful rather than the mediocrities who toil without cease. These others are the victims of their own ‘limiting thoughts.’
Duality eliminates the dialectical possibility that one might learn valuable lessons in both victory and defeat, as in a qualified success. Similarly, death may not be the dread antithesis but another life experience. The contrary of life may well be not death but the prevailing cultural standard of futility, or convention. Call it a kind of half-life, or death in life, a living death. In any case, there will be here multiple meanings, manifold possibilities, and an entire spectrum besides ‘black-white’.
The relentless insistence on the ‘positive’ (for instance, “to live a healthy and radiant life for all our long and vibrant days”) strikes me as possibly pathologic in its own right. It can be maintained without strain, I suppose, by individuals for whom it is a first nature, so to speak, rather than a behaviour acquired via therapy. Speaking for myself I would say that to be undeviantly positive, in Solomon's sense, would involve a huge element of denial. I would be required to put on a false self, a persona, a mask.
The positive thinker is a survivor; and as Elias Canetti points out in Crowds and Power every survivor presupposes a crowd of the dead. Solomon's description of people literally bursting with health and vitality is an image of privilege. It depicts the type found in health food store magazines, in Nazi propaganda posters and in stalinist art. These ‘wholesome’ men and women stand arm in arm at the top of the food chain. Like us, they are part of the minority of the world's population with the power to consume the bulk of the annual available resources. They - and we - are maintained there by force and fraud.
In order to rid ourselves of limiting thought, however, we must do more than exclude bloodshed and deception from awareness. It must simply cease to exist for us. There is no moral dilemma, no imperative, provided one sticks entirely to a positive outlook. As for the suckers, the majority holding us up, tough luck. Resources are finite etc., etc. Better luck in the next life.
If, as I maintain, the unexpressed theology in this piece is dualistic then the prescription for salvation is individualistic or personalistic. A concept of salvation as a matter entirely between the individual and God tends, in my historical view, to all manner of pseudo-mystical excesses and obscenities.
Since we are, most of us, already hopelessly unaware and beyond the reach of competent therapy, we adopt the most indulgent and permissive God possible. God caters to our failings and predilections. Further, we are inclined to measure our progress toward sanctity by our material gains and accomplishments. We reason that if we achieve unobstructed communication with God, via an uninhibited exchange of energy, then we will be rewarded in this life, and possibly in all other lives to come. In short, we are positively happy with the idea of a sinful world - for others. It clears the path to success for us.
Salvation, one could argue, is always entirely personal. I disagree. My ‘limiting thought’ on this point is to suggest that what we consider individual greatness is actually a very profound collective achievement. For example, great poetry requires exceptional cultural circumstances, providential personalities, and generations of immense effort. Many small poets, and many more humble critics, teachers and readers, go into the literary compost heap to produce one Lorca or Neruda. The individual life flowers out of that organic, psychic entity. The poets, if they know what is good for them, honour the stinking mass.
By contrast, the individual salvationist is like the lone survivor on a life raft. There is about him more than a faint odour of cannibalism and murder.
My thought runs to a sequence, as follows:
6 million Jews died in the death camps. How many tens of millions of Poles died in the slave labour camps? Can we truly say the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki died because they harboured a death wish? Did 800,000 slaughtered Rwandans deserve their fate? Were the ones who dehumanized them, calling them cockroaches as they swung the machetes; were these the vibrant, radiant ones? Will you take the message of the personal lie to the children in the Stollery Hospital? Will you undertake to exorcize their Death Urge?
These are questions that cannot be addressed with the tools provided by the article. We are left with platitudes, as in the last paragraph (“As you know, thought is creative . . .”). Platitudes terminate rather than invite contemplation. We are better off to declare them false. Thought, after all, can be destructive. And yes, destruction is sometimes necessary to creation in order to proceed beyond obstruction. Further, thought is more than the ‘sum total’ of all my thoughts. It has, too, a social dimension, a realm of responsibility to others. I do not ‘think’ in isolation, nor do I confine my thought to such puerilities as the quest for eternal youth or the seduction of a woman much younger than myself, like Solomon's Bulgarian exemplar.
The sentence “Your life is the physical manifestation of your thoughts” sounds grand, but what does it mean? It can neither be proved nor disproved. The same holds even if one inverts it: Your thoughts are a manifestation of your social and historical existence. The second form of the proposition at least has the virtue of pointing the way out of one's self-centric orbit.
In closing, I would remind Mr. Solomon that we are indeed greater than the sum of our components. We are capable of transformations, changes of state, and creative leaps for which there seems no precedent. A minute, exponential quality saves us from simplistic theorizing and readi-made dualistic prescriptions. The hypostatised ‘Death Urge’ is a cruel and inadequate response to suffering, whether self-inflicted or otherwise.
"One God Notes" consist of quotations from spiritual writings of many religious traditions. The purpose is to inspire, to open hearts, so people perceive God's Presence in and around them. In this way I hope to create a sense of human and religious unity.
To see the previous "One God Notes" visit http://www.onegodsite.net/archives.html. To learn more about the philosophy behind these notes, please, visit http://www.onegodsite.net/
If you would like to go further and add "One God Notes" to your web site, please, copy and paste the button below and use it to create a link to http://www.onegodsite.net/onegodnotes.html
In Truth, Simplicity and Love, Pritam.
Roche Miette Association is an informal group of people who try to achieve the ideals of human unity as expressed in the Roche Miette Rule. One of the characteristics of this group of enthusiasts is love of Nature and willingness to love God through His Creation. In particular, we are drawn by the beauty of Roche Miette Mountain, near Hinton, Alberta, and organize once a year a non-denominational hike/pilgrimage to this mountain. People of all religious backgrounds are invited to participate with us in this auspicious event.
If these ideals appeal to you, you may want to support them through a financial donation. Please, send checks for "Roche Miette Association" to:
Roche Miette Association
576, Lessard Drive
Edmonton, AB, T6M 1B2
Would you like to contribute to the Roche Miette Newsletter? Please,
send your text in Microsoft Word or HTML format to
firstname.lastname@example.org. Of special interests are stories, reflections on the following subjects:
Human and religious unity.
Harmony between different religions, cooperation between religious groups.
Examples of interfaith dialogue, tolerance, forgiveness.
Love of Nature (especially mountains).
Meditation, Contemplative Prayer.
Religious life, especially Practice of the Presence of God, pilgrimage.
Mysticism, especially in the context of the mountains.
Poetry, art, music, photographs related to the mountains.
Manuscripts to be considered should be original articles (not published
elsewhere). Some previously published materials may
also be considered if submitted with the info and consent of the publisher. Some promotional materials, such excerpts from books, can also be considered if related to the above topics. Announcements of interest for wider audiences are also occasionally accepted.
The Roche Miette Newsletter has a circulation of approximately 350 recipients. Copies of the newsletter are sent to National Library of Canada for research purposes. To see the previous issues you can visit http://www.piotrrajski.com/newsletter.html
Presently there is no remuneration for the submitted materials.
The deadline for the next issue is: October 31, 2004.
Feel free to forward this newsletter to your friends and acquaintances. They may subscribe to the newsletter at: http://www.piotrrajski.com/newslettersubscriptionemail.html