First came the fire in December that destroyed our neighborhood, then last month Regina and I both got COVID.
(As I explain briefly at the end* of the article, we’re getting our lives back together nicely… slowly… and articles for this website will continue to come together nicely… slowly… as long as the forecast isn’t for floods or locusts or buses careening out of control.) 🙂
A string of adversities can get us humans to start thinking more about the big picture. What role does a higher power (God, Allah, Brahman, the source, the principle, consciousness, the universal life force…) play in our lives? Not just in difficult times like these, but all the time?… (bearing in mind that while most of us believe in a higher power, we don’t always agree on what it is or how it affects our lives and our world.)
That’s what we’ll explore in this article: What we imagine the source to be, and what it might really be. (Admittedly, the source is said to be complex beyond human understanding, so let’s just do the best we can in figuring out what it might “really” be.)
Then, once we get a general sense of what the source apparently is, we’ll reevaluate how we’ve been imagining it, and how our perceptions can get skewed by the dramas going on around us in the physical world… and by the limitations of our five senses.
Imagining the Source: Religion
To get a sense of the source, we can first look at the time-proven religions—Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam—where the main focus has always been the source. Each religion has…
- a mystical side to probe and access the source,
- a traditional side with ancient texts containing knowledge and beliefs about the source, and
- a popular side to attract the public to the source.
Mysticism is typically defined as the quest for conscious connection and unity with the source, or God, especially through meditation. Mystics of all time-proven religions, first and foremost, try to get as close as they can to knowing and feeling the infinitely complex, all-pervading, all-powerful source. So the mystical side of religion provides basic truths about the source.
Traditional knowledge is contained in ancient documents like the Torah, the Prophets, and the Writings of western religions, and the Vedas, Upanisads, and Mahabharata of eastern religions. It’s also found in more recent documents—especially the Christian Bible, the Islamic Koran, and the Buddhist Sutras—that were based on the traditional knowledge.
Popular religion is what the public feels, believes, and accepts about religion, especially about the source. And the public has always had mixed views on just about everything. Some of us feel love and awe when thinking about the source (God is great!). Others feel fear and disappointment (If there’s a God, why does He allow all this suffering?!). So the popular side of religion typically has a lot of uncertainty about the source all mixed together with the mystical truths that stir deep within us all.
If we examine the mystical tenets of all time-proven religions, we find a few basic nuggets about the source that they all generally agree on. By gathering up those nuggets, we can get a pretty good understanding the true nature of the source as the totality, the oneness, and the wellspring or creator of the all-that-is.
We’ll look briefly at each major religion’s mystical, traditional, and popular conceptions of the source in a special appendix after the article, since it’s too much information to include within the article itself.**
But there’s other good information to consider as well, besides religion.
More Insights Into the Source
There’s esoteric information such as The Urantia Book and A Course in Miracles that agree with religious mysticism, portraying God as an omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient source of love that’s at the center of everything.
And there are ITC contacts….
The messages below were shared with us (INIT) by seven ethereal beings through ITC systems—telephones, radios, computers, and other high-tech devices configured (largely by our spirit friends***) to deliver knowledge and wisdom into our world. Here are excerpts:
- Man forms God according to human images and conceptions. God or the principle is a being which cannot be compared to anything.
- Many Earth people mistakenly perceive God as a person or an individual entity. God is not a person but the highest principle of life, as well as the absolute reality. He, or it, is the absolute unity and the absolute, unlimited and all-encompassing omniverse.
- Since God, ultimately, is everything, and everything is God, it makes no difference which religion you belong to. There is only one universal truth which can be found through the path of decency.
- Heaven is in all those who recognize what is of God and let themselves be guided by the Divine. The priority and basic concern of every religion is the acknowledgement of God!
- Higher beings are not particularly interested in contacts between dimensions, but they support it because they can bring man closer to the realization of eternal life and the principle or being that you call God, Yahweh, or Nirvana.
***We often think of computers and other high-tech devices as consisting of hardware and software. By that reasoning, ITC devices consist of hardware, software, and what could be called imperceptible “spiritware.” Our spirit friends (when empowered by ethereal beings) can tweak our equipment with life-energy to operate multidimensionally.
Basic Qualities of the Source
So when we gather together the nuggets of common wisdom from religious mystics (see the appendix**) and add them to these gems received from The Seven finer beings, we can get a better understanding of the source, its life-energy, and the vast omniverse it sustains:
- There’s a source at the center that creates and nourishes everything with life-energy—a pure nonvibrating light that begins to vibrate more and more slowly as it streams out-beyond**** from the source.
- Life-energy instills everything with vitality, purpose, knowledge, love, goodness, sincerity, empathy, and other fine and noble motivations that are inherent in the source, although…
- Life-energy devolves or skews gradually as it creates and moves through universes and dimensions that become denser and denser as they get further (vibrationally) from the source. In other words, things become more illusory as the life-energy spreads out-beyond.
- Everything has finer copies or templates of itself (what physical beings like us might call “spirit bodies” or “subtle bodies”) in subtler dimensions leading in-beyond**** toward the source.
- The physical universe is far removed (vibrationally) from the source, and life-energy becomes skewed by the contentious relationships of Earth, which cause pain, suffering, and other illusory conditions.
- We can learn to make conscious contact with the source within us (or in-beyond of us)—for example, through prayer and meditation—to refine our life-energy and to mitigate the unpleasant influence of the contentious relationships going on around us.
****The terms out-beyond and in-beyond refer to the location (or, more accurately, the unique vibration) of everything in relation to the perfect, non-vibrating source. The two terms imply that everything is happening at the same “time” in the same “space,” in a way that’s nearly impossible for the human mind to grasp. In other words, time and space are illusions of dense material realms like ours, and we can transcend those illusions to some degree (for example, through meditation) in order to consciously connect to the source at the center of our being.
So that gives us a pretty good understanding of the source. Is it a perfect understanding? No. Is it the best view of the source available to us at this time? I think maybe it is, thanks largely to 1) scientific knowledge of vibrations and frequencies, 2) religious mystics and esoteric writing, and especially 3) The Seven ethereal beings who shared insights with our world at a crucial time—insights that reaffirm some of the basic tenets of the time-proven religions.
One Basic Tenet of Everything
I’ve come to believe that if there’s one fundamental principle of existence everywhere, it’s probably this:
The source creates and nourishes, we devise.
“We” refers to everything in the vast omniverse—humans, plants, animals, bacteria, molecules, angels, spirits, planets, entire universes… everything.
Everything is powered by life-energy from the source, then it adjusts or devises that life-energy however necessary to exist. We humans, for example, regulate and devise our life-energy with our consciousness. Or maybe our consciousness is our life-energy?
How the Source Appears to Us
Here’s a general scenario of how our view of the source gets skewed once we’re born into a lifetime on Earth:
In the first few moments of life, our five senses kick in, and the bright, noisy world around us is overwhelming. The wisdom and knowledge and realities that we’ve brought along from subtler realms take a backseat to our sensory impressions of our new, Earthly reality. For a few of us it might be a shock, and we bawl our little eyes out. Many of us soon look up at Mom, feel the deep, unconditional love streaming from her, reminding us of ethereal beings close to the source, and we gaze in awe. For most of us, heck, we just want to sleep through all the bustle, quietly reliving the experiences we were having in the spirit worlds before we were born or even conceived… aware that they’ll all be forgotten in the coming years as our conscious mind takes the helm to chart a course for this lifetime. But for now… yawn.
The reality we’d enjoyed in the spirit realms was different from the reality we’re experiencing now, on Terra. Now, our sensations are brought into our body and brain through the five distinct senses—sight through the eyes, hearing through the ears, taste across the tongue, smell through the nose, and touch along body tissues, especially the skin. Before, while we were living as a spirit beings, all of those impressions were wrapped up together as life-energy from the source, which we experienced as a sort of cloud of sensation. That’s why, when we meditate or dream during these earthly lifetimes, we are sometimes overcome with a general sensation of being in another realm. There’s a calmness that’s almost impossible to describe in words, because the sights, sounds, smells, flavors, and feelings are all sort of wrapped up together in a general sensation of that realm.
So for the first three years, our “invisible friends” and other conscious connections to the spirit worlds start to fade away as we get acclimated to our new life on Earth.
Most of us, then, spend the rest of our lives consumed by Earth’s dramas. Family and society might try to keep us anchored to the source through meditation, prayer and religious teachings, but unless we take those practices and teachings seriously, most of us lose touch with (or at least pay little attention to) the source that’s shining brightly at the center of us all and at the center of everything.
When we do think of the source, we think mainly of popular depictions like those shown in the picture at the beginning of this article, which have been skewed by the artists’ (and by our own) human life experiences here at the top of the food chain on Planet Terra.
(Note: The next article is about that food chain: How life-energy from the source is skewed by the rough, dog-eat-dog symbiosis of Planet Earth.)
*As mentioned at the beginning, Regina and I have been getting our feet back on the ground slowly since the Marshall fire and Covid. Those troubles and others have anchored us more firmly to the source. Hardly a day goes by that we’re not aware of our connection to the source with its ceaseless stream of powerful life-energy keeping us charged up through all the drama. We meditate briefly throughout the day and do a nightly prayer when we climb into bed. We talk to each other throughout the day, often venting about the drama in our lives, but just as often reaffirming the presence of the source as a means to defuse much of the drama. So that regardless of what life throws our way, that source connection helps to keep us mentally and emotionally balanced (more or less). 🙂
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Appendix: Religion and the Source
The core of a religion is largely 1) its mystical truths about the source as perceived by mystics while meditating, 2) its ancient knowledge of the source (tradition), and 3) its popular beliefs about the source. Here are some examples from:
- Western religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) that trace back to Biblical figures like Abraham (whom the ancient texts refer to as “God’s friend.” Also,
- Eastern religions (Hinduism and Buddhism) that trace back to ancient texts like the Vedas, which describe Brahman as “the nature of truth, knowledge, and infinity”…
… starting with the oldest religions and working up to the most recent:
Hindu mysticism emerges from dhyana, which means to meditate, contemplate, and think. According to Hinduism, the source (which Hindus call Brahman):
- Is the highest universal principle, translated as “that which never changes—knowledge and infinity.”
- Is the only true reality that bonds everything together as one.
- Grows, expands, and causes other things to grow.
- Is closely associated with, or is the same as, atman (the soul that resides at the center of everything).
- Remains hidden from us because of maya, which is roughly defined as the illusions and dramas of carnal living that captivate our physical senses.
- Becomes accessible to us as we deepen our experiential understanding of Brahman through meditation, which cultivates a conscious connection with that source of universal energy at the center of everything. (read more… )
Traditional Hinduism describes how the source with its life-energy influences human lives through such processes as dharma, karma, and samsara (the moral forces of the universe, the law of cause and effect, and reincarnation).
Popular Hinduism helps shape followers’ moral sensibilities with such ideas as the reverence of all living things (especially cows, which are sacred), and the influence of many gods, or deities, which are different aspects of Brahman, each with a special power. Many Hindus choose one of those deities as an ishtadeva, or god of personal choice, the way Christians might have an affinity for a particular saint. Most Hindus are very religious.
Jewish mysticism is wrapped up in Kabbala, a collection of beliefs and practices that include various forms of mysticism, the most powerful of which is contemplative mysticism, or meditation—the key to fostering a conscious connection with the source by switching off the busy mind to access a higher level of awareness. Through contemplative mysticism comes first-hand knowledge of the source that Jews call Yahweh, which:
- Is all-powerful, all-loving, all-knowing, omnipresent, and merciful.
- Is timeless, eternal, without beginning or end.
- Is everywhere, always, beyond the constraints of time and space.
- Is non-interfering, loving, and compassionate.
- Is filled with truth and goodness.
- Has no gender.
- Creates and sustains all worlds and everything everywhere.
Traditional Judaism is a large collection of ancient writings (including what Christians call the “Old Testament).” The Yahweh of yore was said to be wrathful and judgmental at times, gave humans rules of right and wrong to live by, told believers to kill their enemies on rare occasions (e.g. Canaanites), and punished (sometimes with death) those who disobeyed.
Popular Judaism centers around the belief that real Jews have a blood connection going all the way back to Abraham (“God’s friend”), which gives them a sense of community and solidarity, regardless of their religious beliefs and practices. Despite that noble lineage, most modern Jews are not very religious and don’t think much about Yahweh, which is an enigma.
Buddhist mysticism is all about meditation—making conscious contact with the source—and is honed by practices like Zen (from the Japanese zazen, or seated meditation). Meditation is really the cornerstone of Buddhism everywhere, but most Buddhists, historically, didn’t meditate, which is also an enigma.
Traditional Buddhism. But the biggest enigma among all the world religions might be the fact that Buddhists don’t believe in God! Not to worry, though; it’s probably just a semantic problem. Buddhist beliefs center around a universal life force that other religions regard as the living essence of God or the source. So questions arise. Where does that universal life force (or life-energy) come from? Is there a source that creates it, or does it just exist? Will the answers someday lead Buddhists back to the source? Or (more likely) is it all just a moot point? ( 🙂 After all, the source and the life-energy with all of its infinite vibrations are enmeshed and inseparable from each other; they form the entire omniverse. The source is just that part of the life-energy at the perfect, nonvibrating core of it all.)
Popular Buddhism is not just about meditation with the source, but more about right living. It’s built around the 3 universal truths, 4 noble truths, and the 8-fold path discovered by Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha, some 2,500 years ago.
Christian mysticism is wrapped up in meditation and contemplation, in which people can feel a close personal connection to God, Who:
- Is self-evident and doesn’t need to be “proven.”
- Creates and sustains the world and all that is.
- Is perfect in power, goodness, and wisdom.
- Is spirit and intangible, infinite, omnipresent, incomparable, all-knowing.
- Is loving, truthful, holy, compassionate, merciful, and full of grace. (read more… )
Traditional Christianity includes the Old Testament with its wrathful God, but more importantly the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, who advocated loving a loving God, loving your neighbor as yourself, loving your enemies, forgiving them, asking God’s forgiveness for your sins, repenting sins, and treating others as you’d like to be treated.
Popular Christianity (for the average Christian) involves praying to God often, attending church occasionally, feeling that religion is important in people’s lives, having lukewarm confidence in church leaders, and believing that 1) religion provides answers to modern problems; 2) Jesus is God incarnate (the Son of God) and resurrected after being crucified (rose from the dead); 3) there’s a divine force (holy spirit) that creates and directs human lives; 4) miracles happen; 5) the Bible is the word of God; 6) there’s a Heaven and Hell; 7) believing in Jesus will send you to Heaven, and 8) the End Time described in the book of Revelations will happen.
Mystical Islam is practiced by a small proportion of Muslims like the Sufis. A central component of Sufi worship is the rite of dhikr, which involves constant, meditative awareness of Allah. Sufis meditate both individually and in groups in order to cultivate their personal, conscious connection with the source. Meditation is bolstered by praying, fasting, and abstaining from alcohol and drugs. According to Muslims, and Sufis in particular, Allah:
- Is the one true God—the same God worshipped by other religions, but viewed or interpreted differently.
- Has no appearance that can be perceived through the five senses.
- Is omnipotent, omniscient, formless, and eternal.
- Is “the Light of Heaven and Earth.”
- Is both the substance and the creator of the omniverse.
- Has no name but various useful descriptors, such as the Creator, the King, the Almighty, and the All-Seer.
Traditional Islam (like Christianity) traces back to ancient Jewish patriarchs like Abraham but is centered around the teachings of Muhammad in the Qu’ran, the Islamic holy book, whose main principles include: 1) The Qu’ran, spoken by Muhammad and transcribed by his companions, is the literal word of Allah intended for the guidance of humanity; 2) angels exist; 3) all the prophets of western religions are valid and Muhammad was last in the succession; 4) the main reward of noble behavior is getting closer to Allah, and 5) Allah controls human lives but allows free will, so each person’s life choices are eventually weighed to determine his or her afterlife prospects.
Popular Islam centers around the Five Pillars, which guide the lives of good Muslims by requiring complete devotion to Allah, daily prayers, generosity to those in need, fasting to foster gratitude and empathy, and pilgrimages to holy cities like Mecca.
These are just a few basic qualities of the complex, living religions—just enough to give a flavor of how the mystical core of religion has remained firm across the ages, while the popular side of religion has evolved (or skewed or devised itself) to fit human cultures along the way.