Monday, 7 December 2015

Despair and Renewal

With so much violence in our world at present, it seems to me appropriate to revisit an earlier time when love and compassion also seemed in short supply

 Despair and Renewal

Wartime reflections

Nostalgia moved from nose to brain,
As wood smoke took me back again,
Back to childhood, back to war,
The taste of loneliness and more.

My mother’s arms no longer stayed
The fear of loss, nor hate allayed.
The hate for those whose bombs and guns,
Had taken my belov├ęd ones.
My mind recalls that fearsome night,
The noise, the crashes, screams and fright.
Then silence; eerie, dark and tearful,
I am alone and lost and fearful.

The ‘all clear’ wails its plaintive call,
The smell of death lies over all.
The home with love and joy and games
In ruins.  Cindered by the flames.

Mother, sister, with lovely eyes,
No longer heed my childish cries.
For now they sleep in peace un-broke,
Small wonder then they tears evoke

Abject fear:  Is nothing sacred?
Innocence, now bitter hatred.
Love and compassion, flickered - died,
Darkness shrouded the lamp inside.

All the dreams and hopes of childhood,
As splintered elm, spread through the wild-wood.
No more laughs or light heart teasing,
No more gifts or cuddles pleasing.

Empty heart, unseeing eyes,
All that remains as fears arise,
Fears of where and what and why,
Please dear God, may I too die?   

A change of scene: I’m off to Wales,
A small hill farm amongst the vales.
‘Auntie,’ warmly welcomes me,
Her new son – an evacuee.
The hills so green, the lambs and sheep,
The peace and stillness – I can sleep!
Here sweet nature calms my fear
And nightmares slowly disappear.

The scudding clouds move over me,
I’m making patterns, when I see
A lovely lady, all in white,
“My darling son, are you alright?”

“Mammy!” I cry, “Is it really you?”
“Did you not die?  But I saw you!”
“Hush my child, just hold my hand,
“I’ll tell you all – you’ll understand.”

“My body died that dreadful night,
But the real me goes on; alright?
None shall die, that’s God’s great plan,
 We’re his children; immortal Man.”

“All leave the earth, go by and by
To worlds unseen by mortal eye.
But love still binds us one to one,
I’ll never leave you, precious son.” 

“Come hold me close, let tears flow,
You’re not alone and this I know,
Those tears of yours will wash away,
All hate and fear.  Come, let us pray.”

“Dear father God please let your light,
On this dear child with love alight.
Guide him away from fear and strife,
Help him help others all his life.”

“It was Your will that I should leave,
Help me help him so he’ll believe
That death’s not final, life goes on,
Please grant me this for my dear son.”

“You are all wisdom light and love,
Please may Your angels from above,
Light his path; his footsteps guide,
Until he comes here by my side.”

“Dear boy I have to leave indeed,
But I’ll be back whene’er you need.
Turn your face towards God’s pure light,
And say your prayers every night.”

“This way the pain will hurt you less,
And God will bring you happiness.
Your ‘Auntie’ loves you very much,
She’ll guard you with her loving touch.”

“It’s time for smiles and games and joy,
Forget the past, my little boy.
Your gifts lie hidden; that is best,
When they appear you’ll see you’re blessed.”

“Come back to this so peaceful place,
Meet me again with God’s good grace,
You’re always in your mother’s heart,
It’s true I promise; we’ll never part.”

Renewed I was that lovely day,
Gone, hate and fear; to you I say,
From death please do not hide your eyes,
For it’s the door to paradise.

Be sad sometimes but hate and fear,
Refuse to let them hover near.
Instead with love at your command,
Help others search and understand.

©Lionel Owen 2009

The Day of Rest

The Day of Rest

Sunday is a day of rest,
Some go pray and thus feel blessed.
Remember though that adage old,
As good as rest, is change we’re told.

Seek change if it is rest you need,
Somewhere new, your soul will feed.
If in town you spend your days,
Go to the country; feel and praise.

If you cannot leave your home,
In the country fair to roam,
Look inside yourself; be still,
                                                    There is soul’s nectar – drink your fill.

Wise the psalmist when he wrote
For folks of old, and here I quote,
Don’t just toil upon Earth’s sod,
“Be still and know that I am God.”

Seek the truth and when you find it,
Test within, the love behind it.
Love vibrates with heart and soul
And helps the spirit reach its goal.

Stretch your spirit if you’d be strong,
Leave habit; comfort; move along.
Try what you think you cannot do,
Then inner strength will transform you.

Your spirit does not fear the worst,
It taps the power that from the first,
Made us immortal; sister; brother,
God links us all to one another.

East or West or North or South,
Despite the language from your mouth,
Buddha, Islam, Christ or mission,
His love is ours without condition.

Every road will take us where,
The love of God our homes prepare,
In spirit realms so fair and bright
We all will dwell:  No need to fight.

Some get there quick and others slow,
Why is that? Is it always so?
The quick ones help their worldwide kin,
The slow, too much of self let in.

The quick judge not for this they know,
We always reap whate’er we sow.
They know all err, that’s how we learn,
Are patient, kind and wait their turn.
The slow find patience hard to bear,
They want to change the world and tear
Apart and start anew,
To give them more than me and you.

Please understand and be content,
With all that God on you has spent.
Your hand in His, just trust and know,
You are His child, He loves you so,

The light within your soul is clear,
Cover it not with doubt or fear,
Or selfish thoughts, or hate, or strife,
Your light is love and love is life.

© Lionel Owen 2009

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

What is Life?

What is Life?

Raynor C. Johnson was an Australian physicist, Master of Queens College, University of Melbourne and a highly respected academic.  He spent years studying many different aspects of philosophy, mysticism, mediumship and Spiritualism in his attempt to arrive at an understanding of life that accounted for all its myriad facets and not just the physical and obvious.  He wrote several fascinating books, in all of which his views are clearly and logically stated in non-academic language, except where its use was unavoidable.

His book “Nurslings of Immortality”, investigates the writings of Douglas Fawcett and his theory of Imaginism.  It is a compelling theory that explains, logically, many aspects of life that scientists generally have no explanation for or whose explanations cannot withstand serious, intelligent examination.  Briefly the theory holds that God has imagined everything that exists throughout the universe, even events and developments that take aeons of time to reach fruition.  His imagining is continuous and is not the “once and for all” that some religions claim.  His imagining is a living, vital process in which each one of us contributes to some degree because we are each a part of Him.  On the individual planets, such as Earth, the realisation of God’s imaginings is in the hands of “imaginals” which I believe equate to what Spiritualists think of as the higher spirits.  Here I propose to include some extracts from Johnson’s book in order to whet your appetite for more.

I start with a comment on the tendency of scientists to classify things in groups in the mistaken belief that such classification explains “why”:

“A nucleo-protein molecule is still a molecule – even if it is convenient in biology to call it a gene.  It is incapable of accounting for blueness in eyes, redness in petals, or the length of a nose; nor if it is buffered by other neighbours, or if it drops an amino-acid from its tail, can it produce brown eyes, white petals or a short nose.  We do not dispute that certain molecular conditions and ordering of the genes are conditions (from “below”) enabling such characters to manifest.  But we claim that these qualitative features arise from “above”, because imaginals are able in these conditions to appear.  The philosopher must continue to remind the biologist that “it is no good tapping the cask for wine that is not there.”

When I survey the account which Darwinism and its derivatives gives of Evolution of living things from the Protozoa to Homo Sapiens, I am bound to say that the two themes of Variation and Natural Selection, together with all the detailed knowledge which genetics is supplying, hold out great promise of accounting for the factors in Evolution which derive from “below”.  I am equally clear that regarded as the sole and sufficient basis of Evolution they are completely inadequate.  At every step there is apparent the activity of imagining (spirit or higher activity), of a purposive drive towards the interim goal of increasing awareness, and of experimenting to further that plan.  Some of the experiments have obviously been failures; this is readily granted as we look back at the many extinct forms of life.  But something was learned by these experiments, as we can see by the significant facts that failures were not repeated and that successful devices were fully exploited.

It may be asked: Who or what made these experiments and stored the wisdom?  The answer leads us directly to consider the factors in Evolution which come “from above”.

At certain important stages of evolution, such as the invasion of dry land by the first amphibians or the conquest of the air by primitive birds, a whole group of complex adjustments had to be achieved approximately simultaneously.  One or two alone could be of no value to the creature.  These variations were presumably effected by co-ordinated genetic changes.    It is of great interest that Professor A.C. Hardy has expressed the view “that there must have been at least one element in the process of evolution that is not mechanical or material in the ordinary sense”.  Moreover, referring to telepathy, he has said, “The discovery that individual organisms are somehow in psychical connection with one another across space is, of course, one of the most revolutionary biological discoveries ever made.”
In a later paper Professor Hardy develops these views further:

“I find it quite impossible to imagine how such a mathematical plan of growth could have been evolved entirely under the selective influence of the very heterogeneous environment.  It seems to me to have all the appearance of a definite mental conception like that of an artist or designer – a pattern outside the physical world which in some way has served as a template or guage for selective action.” (God?)

Now to Psychic Research:

“Some people imagine that psychical research is synonymous with Spiritualism.  This is of course untrue, and such a view could only be held in ignorance of both.  The former is a critical and scientific approach to all para-normal phenomena.  The latter is a religious practice based upon the conviction of man’s survival of death and the possibility of communication between the incarnate and the discarnate.  … It is quite possible for a student in the field of psychical research to hold that the spiritualist view is either right or wrong.  The present writer has been driven to accept its central contention as true, both by a critical appraisal of the evidence and by certain personal experiences.

The late G.M Tyrell, a distinguished worker in the field of psychic research, on many occasions drew attention to the strangely neglectful attitude of otherwise thoughtful and reasonable people towards the findings of psychic research.  One would certainly have supposed that where issues of the greatest importance to scientific and philosophical thought were involved there would be widespread concern to investigate and assess them at their true value.  Apart from a small minority of persons this is not so.  The attitude is on the whole one of neglect, or of derision, or of explaining away as coincidental, happenings which, accepted, would be beyond the possibility of explanation by our present scientific knowledge.  It is clear that these commonplace attitudes must have a psychological cause, and Tyrell suggests that in the course of man’s evolution his mind as well as his body has been adapted to the physical environment.  In other words, there is an unconscious factor in man’s mind which acts so as to prevent his interest and belief from wandering too far from the familiar world which his senses present to him.  It leads him to assume that the physical world ceases to exist at the point where his senses cease to register it.  It also leads him to suppose that “common-sense” is a safe guide when faced with the question as to what is possible and what is not possible in this world. …

Let us turn our attention to the aspects of the world which science neglects.  We have seen how it abstracts from the Whole, for purposes of detailed study.  Even biology is not concerned with the distinctions that constitute individuality.  It is obviously of significance for biology what members of a given species have in common, and of little or no significance wherein its members differ.  When we rise to the level of man it is obviously of the greatest significance wherein one individual differs from another.  In other words, feelings, desires, thoughts, aspirations, ideals are not the concern of science, and only to a limited extent the concern of psychology.  In so far as it is a science it is concerned with reactions shared by all men, and not with those higher distinguishing characteristics in virtue of which we cherish the friendship or admire the character of one person rather than another.

Psychical research goes further; it investigates a world whose limits are not determined by the senses.  It is obliged to recognise profound individual differences – on a certain level.  Consider the differing mental affinities of people by which good telepathic rapport is possible between some and not between others.  Psychical Research however, in its turn neglects elements in personality which are higher in the scale of significance.  Those elements which we describe as Values:  sensitivity to Beauty, the qualities of Compassion, of Kindness and of Self-sacrifice, the high attainment of Wisdom of which the expression is found in intuitive insights; these, which are the highest achievements of individuals, are not within its ken.  These partake of still higher levels of the world we may appropriately call spiritual or transcendental to distinguish them from those described as psychical.  Human personality participates in these higher levels, as rocks and trees and animals do not.”

What is Religion?

“William James spoke of it as “The feelings, acts and experiences of individual men in their solitude so far as they apprehend themselves to stand in relation to whatever they may consider the divine.”  G. Galloway defined it as “Man’s faith in a power beyond himself whereby he seeks to satisfy emotional needs and gain stability of life, and which he expresses in acts of worship and service.”  A.N. Whitehead says, “Religion is the reaction of human nature to its search for God.”  E.D. Fawcett speaks of it as “Devotion to the most perfect reality which shows in our experience.”  It would be easy to multiply such definitions, but they all point to certain things.  The whole man is involved; it is a total commitment which affects all the significant levels of man’s living.  We are challenged by what we conceive to be the Divine, and to it we make a glad response, realising that our only happiness must be in our increasing awareness of Him.”

 The “Next Life”
“For some time it has been my belief that the evidential case for man’s survival of death is a very strong one.  More recently, I have had communications through the automatic writing of a friend in London which have transformed that belief into conviction.”

He then goes on to quote descriptions of the afterlife given from the spirit world.  He lays great emphasis on the communication through automatic writing, of F.W.H. Myers, a founder of the British Society for Psychical Research and his belief in Group Souls.

I hope you find the foregoing interesting and will investigate further for yourself.

Thursday, 4 June 2015

Does this mean Particle Physics is coming closer to Spiritualism?

“Matter”: it’s what atoms and molecules are made up of. On the physical material level, it’s what all physical objects are made up of; it is everything that surrounds us and anything that has mass and volume. When scientists attempt to gain a better understanding of the nature of our reality, matter is what they look to. However, when scientists observe matter at the smallest possible level, they are left with more questions than answers. This is thanks to the fact that a tiny piece of matter, like a photon, or an electron, can exist in multiple possible states (as a “wave”) even though it is one single particle… which makes absolutely no sense.

“We choose to examine a phenomenon which is impossible, absolutely impossible, to explain in any classical way, and which has in it the heart of quantum mechanics. In reality, it contains the only mystery.” (1) Richard Feynman, a Nobel laureate of the twentieth century

It is important to consider the notion that our physical material world might be guided by non-physical properties, such as consciousness, and this idea is best illustrated by what is referred to as the double slit-experiment.
In this experiment, tiny bits of matter (photons, electrons, or any atomic-sized object) are shot towards a screen that has two slits in it. On the other side of the screen, a high tech video camera records where each photon lands. When scientists close one slit, the camera will show us an expected pattern, as seen in the video below. But when both slits are opened, an “interference pattern” emerges – they begin to act like waves. This doesn’t mean that atomic objects are observed as a wave, they just act that way. It means that each photon individually goes through both slits at the same time and interferes with itself, but it also goes through one slit, and it goes through the other. Furthermore,  it goes through neither of them. The single piece of matter becomes a “wave” of potentials, expressing itself in the form of multiple possibilities, and this is why we get the interference pattern.

How can a single piece of matter exist and express itself in multiple states? Furthermore, how does it choose which path, out of multiple possibilities, it will take?

“Do not keep saying to yourself, if you can possibly avoid it, ‘but how can it be like that?’ Because you will get down the drain into a blind alley from which nobody has yet escaped. Nobody knows how it can be like that.”  – (1) Richard Feynman

Here’s Where It Gets More Confusing
When an observer is added, or when scientists decide to measure and look at which slit the piece of matter goes through, the “wave” of potential paths collapses into one single path. The particle goes from becoming, again, a “wave” of potentials into one particle taking a single route. It’s as if the particle knows it’s being watched. The observer has some sort of effect on the behaviour of the particle.

The quantum double slit experiment is a very popular experiment used to examine how consciousness and our physical material world are intertwined. Again, just to reiterate, when scientists decided to observe the tiny piece of matter, that act of observation alone “collapsed” all those potentials into one state…

I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulating consciousness.”  –  Max Planck, theoretical physicist who originated quantum theory, which won him the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1918
“What I am going to tell you about is what we teach our physics students in the third or fourth year of graduate school… It is my task to convince you not to turn away because you don’t understand it. You see my physics students don’t understand it, that is because I don’t understand it.” – (1) Richard Feynman

This type of confounding phenomenon has been repeatedly demonstrated, and examined a number of times by experts from all over the world. For example, one study published in the journal Physics Essays explains how factors associated with consciousness “significantly” correlated in predicted ways with perturbations in the double slit interference pattern.
“Observation not only disturbs what has to be measured, they produce it. We compel the electron to assume a definite position. We ourselves produce the results of the measurement.”  – Dean Radin, PhD, Chief Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (source)

What Does This Mean For US As Individuals And As One Human Race?
It’s hard to know what exactly this means, but we are talking about observing what we are all made up of, matter, at the smallest possible level. If the same rules apply, then does this mean we ourselves are existing as a wave of possibilities with regards to the direction we take in our lives? After all, we are all made up of this “matter.”  Are there other versions of our life playing out in some type of alternate reality? What “collapses” us onto our choice of paths from a wave of potentials? Is there an observer that does this? Is there someone watching us? Is it our consciousness that is observing ourselves, and is that dictating the makeup of our reality? So many questions to be asked, and so few answers to be found.
One thing that resonates with me is the idea that quantum physics and other discoveries in various fields are simply a pre-curser to ancient knowledge. A step behind, in the discovery of what was already known in our ancient world.

“Broadly speaking, although there are some differences, I think Buddhist philosophy and Quantum Mechanics can shake hands on their view of the world. We can see in these great examples the fruits of human thinking. Regardless of the admiration we feel for these great thinkers, we should not lose sight of the fact that they were human beings just as we are.” – Dalai Lama (source)

If you factor in these quantum experiments, combined with the multitude of studies examining parapsychological phenomenon (consciousness, power of the mind, distant healing, telepathy, and other unexplainable but observable phenomenon), as well as all of the evidence pointing to the fact that we can even influence our own biological systems with thoughts alone, the picture (to me) becomes very clear.  We exist in a world that does not yet recognize the importance or the power of thoughts, feelings, and emotions when it comes to the type of human experience we create for ourselves and the inner state from which we act and create it. These things do indeed have the power to change the world, they are what will lead to the correction action, which is also necessary.

I will leave you with this quote, as I have before:
“A fundamental conclusion of the new physics also acknowledges that the observer creates the reality. As observers, we are personally involved with the creation of our own reality. Physicists are being forced to admit that the universe is a ‘mental’ construction. Pioneering physicist Sir James Jeans wrote: ‘The stream of knowledge is heading toward a non-mechanical reality; the universe begins to look more like a great thought than like a great machine. Mind no longer appears to be an accidental intruder into the realm of matter, we ought rather hail it as the creator and governor of the realm of matter. Get over it, and accept the inarguable conclusion. The universe is immaterial-mental and spiritual.'”  – R.C. Henry, Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins University, “The Mental Universe”; Nature (436:29,2005) (source)

This definitely gives you something to think about.