Tag Archive: Ego


anotherworldHave you ever paid attention to your thoughts? Have you ever considered their source? Where do thoughts come from and where do they go? Are they rooted in memories of the past, both positive and negative; or are they rooted in fear, loathing and fantasies of the future? How big is the mind? Does it have a boundary? Can you visualize how big the mind is? When thinking of how vast the Universe is, it begs the question: How big is the mind to contemplate something so vast as the Cosmos? Simple questions with interesting answers? Within our vast minds there are typically three facilities of thought. The first is thoughts rooted in the past: Experiences and memories for the most part. Then you have thoughts embedded in the future: Fantasy and daydreaming for example. Both elements of these thought facilities involve elements of fear, anger, sadness, pride, jealousy and some conviction – all integral fixtures of the ego. Surprisingly, these modes of thought take up probably 80% of your minds contemplation. 80%! Think about that for a moment. We almost always are living in the past which is gone or the future which has yet to materialize. It’s odd to think about right? Take the time to label your thoughts: Are they rooted in the past or future? The answer will confirm what we already know to be true. The third mode of thought is focused in the present moment. Being mindful of the present means we are not saddled down with fear and fantasy from the past and future, instead we are completely centered in the experience of life itself. Each moment in the present is fresh, acute and vivid. It is at this point we can reach a more spacious vision of life which is rooted in what I like to call our “true reality”. What is true reality? Well, only you can define that notion for yourself, for only you can determine why you were put on this Earth and for what purpose. To define your own true reality, you need to let your mind drop away from what you already perceive as reality. I know this sounds contradictory, but it is the only way to get beyond the constraints of the ego. This is not something that is going to happen immediately. It will be a gauged process of development. As you will soon realize, many of us lack a genuine level of self esteem. If we have any confidence it tends to be egocentric and a crude level of esteem. We tend to resemble a boutique of bad habits and passive addictions. We gain our confidence though money, materialism, the praise and opinions of others and self-gratification. We stumble through the day stressed and somewhat confused and empty. This reality is the mildly chaotic existence many of us live – sometimes unknowingly. How would we know any different? That is how life has always been… These are the mind facilities of the past and future; the Ego.

The whole purpose in life is to achieve a personal level of enlightenment. I use the word “personal” because though the definition of enlightenment may have a common meaning, the true essence of enlightenment will be different for each person. Much like our finger prints which are unique to us as individuals, our own personal search for enlightenment is also unique and needs to fit our very own needs and desires. Like a hand print in the wet sand near the shore, your hand needs to fit the mold – thus being the perfect aesthetic match. The first problem that arises is that enlightenment, though defined, is not found in the “material world” we live in which is mostly dictated by those incessant thoughts of past and future. Rarely are we living in the present moment. In order to reach true illumination, we need to strip off the chains that shackle us to this ordinary world. We need to walk up hill even though most of society is walking down hill. Enlightenment is a blessed state in which the individual transcends desire and suffering and attains Nirvana. Nirvana is an enlightened state of being void of suffering. As you will find, the concept of suffering is the mainstay of this problematic “material world” we live in.

Maybe you have heard of Abraham Maslow’s “Hierarchy of Needs” which describes an imaginary pyramid that begins with physiological needs at its base and aesthetic principles of self-directed growth at its apex. After the satiation of water, food and warmth comes love and safety issues. These needs are born from a more primitive human existence dating back millions of years. It was not until more recently – the last 3,000 to 5,000 years that humans began searching for self-actualization. This is when contemporary religion was born. Self-actualization is really just another term for enlightenment. This higher level of reasoning and understanding is really the last evolutionary step in human perception. We are now just entering into this new age of reason which includes asking the most pressing questions in life: Why do we suffer? What is God and how does the Universe function?  These questions take us away from the dogmatic, close minded view of what religion has presented the last couple millennia and urges us to take a more dynamic approach. Deep down there is this almost primal hunger to know and understand. Religion was created by man to feed this hunger yet for many it is not enough. Our appetite is voracious and for many of us there is this peculiar feeling that the concept of God as it relates to the Universe is much more complex and magnificent. Somehow the concept of enlightenment figures into this cosmic puzzle that also includes feelings of bliss and love. Negative emotions like fear, anger and jealousy now seem more remote and gratuitous. This rift in emotions is explained by the two worlds I briefly mentioned earlier: The “material world” governed by ego (past and future thoughts) and our “true reality” (living in the present moment).

Humans relate to opposites in life: Man and woman, night and day, even heaven and hell. But what about Ego and True Nature? The ego is part of our mental devices that experiences and reacts to the outside world and thus mediates between the primitive drives of our being and the demands of the social and physical environment. The ego has many shortcomings in how it interprets reality. The first thing to understand is that the ego is merely an attachment that feeds off of human emotions. Much like a mosquito feeds off the blood of a mammal; the ego feeds off of our fears, fantasy and regulates our self-esteem. Self esteem is a person’s overall evaluation or appraisal of his or her own self-worth. The ego for better or worst thrives on ideals, beliefs and laws that determine a perception of the world and life that is larger than the individual. It becomes the governing force from which we unknowingly base our daily actions. Somewhere on the road of life the ego took up management status in our minds and controls every step we take in some facet. Born at a premature age, the ego incorporates the various ideals and beliefs that make up our surroundings as it relates to what others think and project. It is a complex array of sources that creates and fuels an ego: The unattainable benchmark set by celebrities to the materialistic urges brought forth by our peers and the advertising we are inundated with daily. It deals with social acceptance in communal arenas and the moral and mainstream pressures of life. In the “material world” the ego unknowingly gains power from these sources and we as malleable creatures inherit control patterns which subconsciously dictate our actions and reactions in life. Control patterns are subliminal hard-wired urges and intentions that are controlled by the ego and facilitate and reinforce the emotions of fear, anger, jealousy and low self-worth, many times unknowingly. Further, the ego grows stronger the more our contemplation facilities sit mired in thoughts of the past and future – again, mental imprints that take up more than 80% of your day.

The opposite of our ego is our True Nature. The concept of True Nature is the intrinsic, immortal potential for reaching enlightenment in the mind of every sentient being. Its source and energy are born from the Cosmos. So what does that exactly mean? Quantum mechanics is the study of matter and energy, in particular the fact that energy is absorbed and released in minute quantities, and that all matter displays wave-like and particle like properties, especially when viewed at subatomic levels. Quantum mechanics suggests that the behavior of matter and energy is interconnected and that the effect of the observer on the physical system being observed must be considered part of that system. Broken down into rudimentary terms; we are made of quantum energy and we are interconnected to quantum energy; one complete living, breathing, pulsing orb of energy that is the Responsive Universe. When our mind facilities are rooted in the present moment, sans of past and future, we are connected to this Responsive Universe. Every unadulterated thought, action and reaction is interconnected down to the smallest subatomic matter. Your actions are that of a creator. You are the creator. You are God…. This is what True Nature is. It is your connection to the Universe where anything is possible. Further, this connection with humans and the Universe explains why karma, the power of prayer and an afterlife are scientifically possible (all topics I will discuss in future blogs).

From a scientific standpoint, this energy is dependable and unwavering. Quantum energy can also be defined as a “life source” that connects to everything that exists in the Universe: From distant stars and galaxies to microscopic atoms within your body. As proven in quantum mechanics, everything has a quality of interconnected energy associated with it. All of this energy is indestructible as energy cannot be destroyed, it just changes form. From a humanistic standpoint, this energy is positive in nature as it exhibits no fear, anger or negativity – these fore mentioned negative traits are of man’s making (ego facilities). This positive quantum energy can include our thoughts, actions and the basis for our existence. It is the common denominator for everything that exists – the true definition of God. The ego defines the “material world” we were born into and True Nature defines the alternate Universe that exhibits our “true reality”; everything pure and unadulterated. THE PRESENT MOMENT! True Nature transcends all religion and even this world; again, its energy is constant and indestructible. Knowing this breeds clarity and a responsive quality in our minds. When our thoughts and perceptions are rooted in the present, the ego is powerless. This is why meditation is important because it is a process that trains the mind to reside in the present and not the past and future. The goal of self-discovery and enlightenment is to live more in the present moment and less in the past and future – thus connecting to this sublime dynamism that is your True Nature.

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own journey in Self-Discovery.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

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nearindy

Imagine being a concrete road; so large and strong not even the biggest storm or largest earthquake could crumble down your highway. Imagine this road as your True Nature: A life source that is unwavering and indestructible; a facet of energy, born from the Universe, uninjured and steadfast. You were born with True Nature and you will die with True Nature; intact and dependable.

Now, imagine debris and refuse blowing in the wind. Empty water bottles, an errant box, plastic grocery bags and cigarette butts. This trash is the ego facilities of your mind: Blowing past your road of strength with anger, jealousy, narcissism, guilt and addiction…. Just like endless thoughts parading through your mind. An endless parade of crap blowing carelessly across your path; your road of life..

Be the road… not the trash….

Be the True Nature of your being and not the false-self driven by ego and society….

 

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own journey in Self-Discovery.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

fourthawakeningI chat about the concept of True Nature all the time on this blog and the definition and premise is really the back bone of the Responsive Universe – my recent book by Wisdom Moon Publishing.

A great question was recently brought forward by a reader (please know you can always reach me at mandalatree@aol.com for comments and or questions). The question was this:

” Do you consider True nature/True reality to be individually defined (different from person to person) or are they defined ‘universally’.  As in everyone has the same True Nature/True reality. ”

This is a great question and is certainly worth sharing with our Responsive Universe community –

so…

Lets first understand what True Nature is: True Nature is your intrinsic connection to the Responsive Universe. You have existed before mortal  birth as energy in a different form. In some form or facet your energy – my energy has existed since the beginning of time as we know it. Not just time here on Earth but one could argue since the Big Bang. Let that sink in for a moment.  After the Big Bang and the battle between particles and anti-particles, a minute amount of particles had just enough (or more) mass to win the battle for cosmic supremacy. That ancient left over matter and energy is what created the Universe we know and study today. We are part of that energy because quantum physics states – Energy can neither be created nor destroyed; rather, it transforms from one form to another.

In Buddhist philosophy one may call this energy that transcends earthly dogma as True Nature.  You exist now as True Nature and you will exist after mortal death as True Nature.  When you live in the present moment sans of fear and fantasy (ego) you connect to your True Nature; the non-duality of your instinctual consciousness that is connected to something bigger than us. The ego is required for basic survival and subsistence strategies and can lead us to early child development but it becomes a burden later in life. Yes the ego might be a yardstick to know the pendulum balance between suffering and bliss but the goal of Self-Discovery is to understand the difference between True Nature and ego and how we can shift our thoughts more away from our ego and closer to our true self or True Nature.

So now that we are clear what True Nature is let’s get back to the question at hand.  Is True Nature a Universal energy or an individually defined energy? In a nutshell it is both. This source of energy known as True Nature is forged from the Cosmos. Through a matrix of quantum particles and waves of light and energy we are connected to the source. So in a sense it is Universal and we could probably leave it at that.  Still there is a humanistic side to this. We all have this True Nature within. Much like a soul it is our life source.  The big difference between a soul and True Nature is that in religious dogma a soul can be taken from you (I.E. the Devil). True Nature is fixed, indestructible and dependable. It has been around for over 15 billion years (maybe forever) and it is not going anywhere and no one can take it from you – not even death. The true miracle or gift is the rare ability to foster conscious thought which allows us to not only understand True Nature’s existence, but also to strive to connect to its love and instinctual wisdom. Many people have no idea they have True Nature even though it exists in every conscious sentient being. Different religions and cultures may have different names but broken down to the most common denominator; it’s the same thing. Unfortunately the ego clouds our unadulterated vision of True Nature. No matter the human state or the ideals and intelligence that drive the variability in human consciousness; we all have True Nature where we like it or not. The personal side of this is the ability; with the right mindfulness and clarity to connect to this wellspring of energy and enlightenment.

So, there is the universal concept of True Nature – something we all possess and there is the humanistic side of True Nature which is the intrinsic goal as sentient beings to reach True Nature and thus self-discovery through meditation, mindfulness and daily life practice.

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own journey in Self-Discovery.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

Balance

Our bodies want to find a balance – a connection to our True Nature. It is our ego and false-self that obscures this realm of wellness and betterment. By nourishing our bodies with food and exercise, meditation and positive energy we move closer to that realm of balance.

vertigo

Recall the wisdom from previous writings that expands on the concept of True Nature. True Nature is a spacious vision to which we can all connect. This vision or energy within is indestructible and never fleeting. It is like the blue skies that are always present even if temporarily obscured by clouds. In order to connect to this True Nature our thoughts need to be completed centered in the present; sans of fear and fantasy, past and future. It is not about the past… that is gone… It is not about the future… that has yet to arrive… it is about what is going on right now… and now… and now… You see eighty percent of all your thoughts today were most likely replays of the past and day dreaming about the future; focusing on fear and fantasy… these thoughts may bring some form of instant gratification but they can also bring anxiety, dread and a cluttered mind… Almost everything that is not in the present moment is ego driven – your false-self. When you center yourself in the present or on a specific task like reading this blog the moment at hand is more authentic. The present moment is a magical gap between the past and future; a reprieve from mediocrity, apprehension and self-gratifying desire. Within those authentic gaps is this amazing connection to energy, relaxation, reverence and bliss. That is the balance… It is here in the present that thoughts slow, inspiration and awareness is fine-tuned and there is this heartfelt feeling that we are evolving in the right direction. – It is where you will connect to your True Nature and it is here in the present that your heart wish or inner voice will speak. Your inner voice is your ego-less instinct; your “true-self” that speaks wisdom and reveals an illuminated path to enlightenment. We all have this inner voice but the problem is that our egos voice tends to be louder. All those endless thoughts that are awash in your mind drown out the inner voice within. It is your inner voice that will guide you into the future soundly and confidently. This does not come easy but the more mindful you are the more you will slowly shift into this grand and welcoming Responsive Universe. Over time your mind will train itself to live in a Responsive Universe and then things like meditation and mindfulness will become second nature – much like breathing in and out. By centering your thoughts in the present you are creating space within the mind where wisdom and energy can arise.

 

How vast is your mind? Maybe it is infinite in its energy and capacity?

 

We have discussed the quality of space as it relates to our minds on many occasions.  Imagine the space it takes to hold the countless thoughts that race through our heads each day. Imagine the space it takes to hold memories, dreams, skills, and lessons. The tangible brain may seem small but the mind seems vast, maybe boundless?

Where do thoughts come from? Where do they arise within the mind? Can you pin point their source? Where do thoughts go? Does the mind have a border or perimeter? Close your eyes for a moment. The darkness seems like a small place doesn’t it? Now open your eyes and just like that your world has grown. But what about dreams? Your eyes are closed but here is this surreal and bizarre world that wakes up while you sleep. It seems anything is possible in the dream world. Yet these dreams exist in the same mind that manages your wakeful senses and thoughts. The concept of space reminds me of an interesting paradox. Look up into the clear night sky. Those stars you see are hundreds if not thousands of light years away. Even the closest star would take our most modern space craft 55,000 years of travel to just reach its orbit. There is a lot of space out there and based on Quantum Physics we are fundamentally connected to it all. This is a hard concept to grasp: The Universe, our minds and True Nature – a trinity of sorts that defines us and this world we live in; a Mandala – connected, revolving, endless, dependable and balanced.  The space that surrounds us and the quality of vastness within the mind is important to actualize. These qualities are connected to ways humanity is just now beginning to realize.

The goal is to recognize this space and eventually come to live within its boundless walls and unfathomable ceilings – to be free, mindful and connected to the energy and light that is this Responsive Universe. That is the balance we must find within and with out…

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own journey in Self-Discovery.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

sunraysOur journey to spiritual and social evolution begins with your minds aperture. Living with an “open mind” is an important facet to personal and spiritual evolution. The ability to be open to new ideas is really the key to self-discovery and being able to connect to the healing, holistic energies that surround us. We need to be open to innovative ideas and we need to be open to re-analyzing our old belief systems. A belief system is the fundamental cognitive orientation of an individual or society encompassing natural philosophy, religion, politics and even relationships. Really you can have a belief in anything. For most of us, a belief system is based on religious beliefs or blind faith. As you will learn, most of what we discuss and experience in this blog revolves around the laws and theories of science, thus requiring very little blind faith.  The knowledge and wisdom learned from The Responsive Universe will be gilded from your own experiences. The truth in such knowledge will come to fruition through actions and living by example. In order to evolve as humans on a social and spiritual level we need to analyze old belief systems we used to call our own. We need to discard the archaic and unnecessary and connect to a belief system that incorporates all possibilities within this grand Universe. When we expand our minds aperture to the infinite possibilities that exist within this Responsive Universe, anything is achievable.

 

Do you believe that? That anything is achievable?

 

I have learned through experience that the aperture of your open mind will determine what is possible and impossible. The truth it seems is in the experience; our insight and knowledge is dependent on our link to our True Nature. Any genuine want or desire that is created in the mind is a dynamism that exists within reality – you are connected to this energy whether it is born from the mind or your surroundings – quantum physics has many great studies on how energy connects and manifests our actions, reactions, thoughts, dreams and yes fears. Energy is measured by how mindful you are. Imagine the person that drives home one evening with their mind preoccupied about fear of the future, fantasy and past, not even noticing a beautiful sunset exploding to the west, signifying the finale of another day; and then there is the person who is mindful and connected to the present who sees the sunset as a union to something sublime; even a sign or milestone that he or she is evolving in the right direction; perhaps synchronicity – that perhaps we do live in a Responsive Universe. Please understand that anything is achievable when your focus and intent is genuine. Be mindful of this…

The purpose of this blog and really our purpose in life is to achieve a “personal” level of enlightenment. Enlightenment is living a life of bliss, free of ego and suffering. We need to be careful here and not consider enlightenment the same as perfection. Perfection is a difficult if not impossible benchmark to reach therefore in the genuine pursuit of enlightenment our primary focus is continued improvement or evolution in a positive direction. I use the word “personal” because though the definition of enlightenment may have a common domination, the true essence of enlightenment will be different for every individual. Much like our finger prints which are unique to us as individuals; our own personal search for enlightenment is also unique and needs to fit our very own needs and desires. Like a handprint in the wet sand near the shore, you’re hand needs to fit the mold – thus being the perfect, aesthetic match. The first problem that arises is that enlightenment is not found in the “material world” we were born into. In order to reach true illumination we need to strip off the chains that shackle us to this ordinary world. We need to walk uphill even though most around you are walking down hill. It is ironic but true; in most cases the more difficult path in life tends to be the more fruitful. There are few shortcuts in life and choosing the easy path through conflict, challenges and changes tends to lead only to mediocrity and suffering. The evolutionary goal is to walk toward the sun – toward the healing light – toward enlightenment. Enlightenment is a blessed state in which the individual transcends most desire and suffering and attains Nirvana. Nirvana is an enlightened state of being, void of suffering. As you will begin to see, the concept of suffering is the mainstay of this problematic “material world” we all live in.

Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs describes an imaginary pyramid that begins with physiological needs at its base and aesthetic principles of self-directed growth at its apex. After the satiation of water, food and warmth humans seek love and safety needs. These requirements are born from a more primitive human existence dating back millions of years. It was not until more recently – the last 3,000-5,000 years that humans have began searching for self-actualization. This is where the genesis of modern religion began to root itself in humanity. Self- actualization is really just another word for enlightenment.  This higher level of reasoning and understanding is really the last evolutionary step in human perception and consciousness. We are just now entering this new realm of reason which includes asking the most pressing questions in life: Why do we suffer? What is God and how does the Universe function? What is the meaning of life? …And how am I connected to all this? These questions take us away from the dogmatic, close minded view of what religion has presented the last couple millennia and urges us to take a more dynamic approach. Deep down there is this almost primal hunger to know and understand and through awareness and understanding we become more self-evolved. Religion was created by man in an attempt to feed this hunger to know and understand yet for many it is not enough. Our appetite is voracious and for some of us, there is this peculiar feeling that the concept of God as it relates to the Universe is much more complex and magnificent. Somehow the concept of enlightenment figures into this puzzle that also includes feelings of bliss, love and healing energy. You might be asking, “How do I fit into this Responsive Universe? “Where do these feelings of bliss and positive energy come from”? Why do negative emotions like fear, anger and jealousy root themselves in our lives? This rift in emotions is explained by the two worlds we discussed earlier: the “material world” and our “true reality” governed by Mandalas. More to come in my next Blog post.

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own journey in Self-Discovery.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

dalilama

“I believe the only true religion consists of having a good heart” – The Dalai Lama

Another simple and yet profound quote from his Holiness the Dalai Lama. How do you interpret that 12 word sentence? There are so many religions and faiths in this fallible world. Some can operate independently of blind faith like Buddhism. Other religions are built entirely on blind faith. Some condemn a veering path; some describe both the edicts of what is considered good and what is considered sin. All talk about an afterlife in some form or facet.  I can think of two religions specifically that have facilitated more suffering than good across the last couple thousand years.  So where does that leave us? Most likely confused…
What is religious scripture; but carefully crafted words? History has proven that much of the organized scripture we reach for today has been manipulated, re-written and molded to benefit the few in power and control the masses. In 300 AD Emperor Constantine literally rewrote the Bible at the Council of Nicaea. Tell that to a reborn Christian and see how that shakes out… But none of that really matters anyway. At least not to me. For scripture or as Joseph Campbell references, “mythology”, to exist and have power it requires the faith (or blind faith) of its followers to give it energy, authority and life. And as we have learned, such religious ideology can be rooted in complete fantasy and even science fiction – ever explored Scientology?  Yeah, enough said there…

Now,  from your educated eye… From a socially evolved viewpoint; if most or all religion is muddled, adulterated, twisted and warped; many times  so far skewed from the original message, how are we to find our way spiritually? How do we know what is right and wrong and what is prepackaged bullshit?

By finding your true thoughts, intentions, actions and reactions through True Nature!

We have discussed in this Blog and also within my book, The Responsive Universe, that True Nature (which is the opposite of ego and false-self) is this unadulterated source of energy within that is everything: Within its borderless aura sits your moral compass, the secrets to happiness and the path of less suffering. When you connect to this True Nature, vast horizons open to bring space, awareness and sensitivity to this thing call life. True Nature brings mindfulness and understanding to the controlled chaos that is modern-day living. True Nature has always existed and always will. No one or thing can take True Nature from you – not even death itself. True, this energy source may remain hidden, buried by ego, but it will always remain within; steadfast and dependable.  In Buddhist teachings the word “heart” is coined a lot to describe your inner soul or being; your core of existence. This is the definition of True Nature and when you base your intent from this bottomless well of responsive energy you are living from the heart and not from the ego and what society deems correct.

If you scientifically and philosophically attempt to quantify True Nature you will understand that it possesses all the trimmings of religion. It is the definition of “true” Religion. Or maybe a better way to put it: It is the definition of Spirituality. Your spirituality… The difference between contemporary religion and True Nature is that in order to define God and your place within this Universe, you have to include yourself as part of its definition. You are part of its common denominator. You are Heart, Love, God and Universe and none of it can exist without you!

If that is not religion, I do not know what is….

 

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own journey in Self-Discovery.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

Image by NDTV

lightburst

“Everything changes once we identify with being the witness to the story  rather than the actor in it…”

 – Ram Dass

A poignant quote by spiritual leader Ram Dass. What does this mindful thought really mean? Of course, I am not here to necessarily paraphrase a quote from a great thinker; instead I am here to simply analyze this quote with my own devices on how such meaning would fit into a Responsive Universe. There may be a slight difference…

It is quite simple really; especially when we get back to the basics of meditation. I have always mentioned how there is a misconception about meditation. It is not about controlling the thoughts in our head – it is about being an observer of the thoughts in our head. That is a tough principle to reconcile especially for people new to meditation. There is this passive or underlying stress or urge to try to quiet the mind when the goal of meditation is to simply be an observer of the thoughts that continually float in and out of our heads. The goal of meditation is to not attach ourselves to the dramas of the mind. Do not judge the thoughts and do not be overly positive or especially negative to your thoughts – just be the observer – just be… nothing more…

Once we master meditation and let that skill set transcend into our daily life practice, our ability to not be so sensitive to ego and false self is actualized. We are able to establish a balance or baseline of energy that remains positive to neutral in our thoughts, emotions, actions and reactions; even during negative life situations. The objective is to suffer less. Just like in meditation, the goal is not to be the thought or let a thought drive our meditative focus – the goal is to simply be an observer. In doing so, we are more of a witness and less of an actor. In life, we have the same choice; particularly in times of conflict and challenge: With minfulness, we can leave our ego facilities out of such dramas and simply be a witness to the story instead of being embroiled in the drama as an actor. Such changes in how we think and react to conflict and challenge will net completely different results. Now, the goal is not to be a by stander and live with no interaction. We all have to face challenges and conflict on a daily basis  – the goal is to not let challenges or conflict be the driving energy to our reactions to such events. Be an observer and  be mindful of how our egos and false-self want to take such dramas into a negative space. By being an observer, we also create space between the sitation and our immediate action or reaction; all in an effort to avoid negative blind responses. When you detach from a situation of conflict or challenge and face difficult situations with mindfulness and true nature you will find the most proactive solution. Be the witness and not the actor. Let mindfulness, space and clarity be your source of intent.

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own Hero’s Journey.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

fourthgod

God lives in the Present Moment?

Let’s read this thought-provoking quote from one of the great modern philosophical minds:

“Through the present moment, you have access to the power of life itself, that which has traditionally been called “God.” As soon as you turn away from it, God ceases to be a reality in your life, and all you are left with is the mental concept of God, which some people believe in and others deny. Even belief in God is only a poor substitute for the living reality of God manifesting every moment of your life.”

Eckhart Tolle

To begin, I guess you first have to define what God is to you… I am not a big proponent of allowing others to define God for me or for society. History has shown in excruciating detail that has failed in many facets. There are many definitions of God; in fact the word God has been so overused, misinterpreted and manipulated that you almost have to toss the word out and redefine it for yourself without the dogma of organized religion and old parables. You need to wipe the slate clean and  look inward and outward for what God represents to you as a life source, an energy and the connection we all bear. In doing that you need to also include yourself as part of that equation. God is not an old definition; in fact God is a boundless energy of instinctual consciousness, light, quantum dynamism and vibration that connects the Cosmos as one breathing, pulsing organism; a definition that continually redefines itself .  It seems over the course of religious history, few people take the time or even have the open mind and ability to define God without attaching dogma to the idea. And many in this modern world argue and battle for these defined concepts of God that have little bearing on the true reality of spirituality and our place in this Universe.  It’s almost insanity at its finest example and yet it is the norm we all live with. As Tolle suggests, such blind dogmatic exploits are a “poor substitute for the living reality of God”.  I would agree, blind faith is in itself a poor representation of what is truly godly and spiritual. And that divine notion cannot be found solely in a church or in a book; or from the mouth of a holy man. This energy, wisdom and celestial instinct is found within the silence of your thoughts. Only you alone can find the true definition of God. Yes, that puts a burden on the individual and goes against common religious practices; aligning more with eastern faiths.

Eckart Tolle is famous for his book the “Power of Now” which discusses the power and energy that exists by rooting your mind in the present moment. As I have written, the past is riddled with dogma, guilt and things in life that you can’t change. And yet, more than half of our thoughts within a given day are anchored in the past. Our thoughts of the future are typically riddled with fear and fantasy – all ego driven maladies. The only true moment is the “Power of Now”… That instant moment when you are experiencing this exact split second: Gone is the ego, the past and future; only you and the Universe with expanding horizons to infinity. The key is to live in the present moment. Meditation and immersing yourself in nature are paths to the present moment. There lies the essence of your True Nature and there lies the true power of God that exists as the totality of the Cosmos.

As Tolle interjects: As soon as you turn from the present moment, “God ceases to be a reality in your life”. All that is left is the mental imagery that is now rooted in the past or future; laden with dogma and all the perils of societal immersion, religious ideology and the wars fought over them. There is nothing pure about dogma, fear, guilt and ego – and yet that is exactly what most organized religions market subliminally. Can you find God through organized religion? Maybe, but it will always carry with it the dogmatic trappings of a cloudy history wrought with money, war, power and absolutism. It can never be pure, unadulterated and just about you and only you. When you look into the mirror and see that you are the hand of god, then it is about you and only you. When the ego remains out of such revelations, what you are left with is a pure connection to the concept of God. Nothing is more empowering…

So, once you achieve that higher level of spiritual clarity and awareness you begin to realize this thing called God is bigger than just man-made religion. It is bigger than you and I. It is bigger than a book of parables or a mega church on a Sunday morning. Its bigger than Earth. It is everything within this Responsive Universe and living more in the present moment and less in the past and future is a path to connecting to the true essence of God – your True Nature within.

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own Hero’s Journey.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

itsatrap

So you had a spiritual breakthrough? …an epiphany? Maybe you read an enlightening book and it has changed your perspective (hopefully it was mine – LOL). Maybe you read a bunch of books… You feel your space, clarity and insight growing… your vibration and glow expanding? Excellent! Self-discovery and spiritual evolution is the goal in a Responsive Universe…

Do you feel compelled to tell everyone you meditated today? Is your new found wisdom splashed all over Facebook and Twitter 24/7? Do you stop random people and tell them you can see their aura or energy? Are you voicing your new opinions to those around you as if you have been a master teacher your entire life? Do you feel more powerful and self-actualized than others with your new found energy? Do you feel sorry for those easily led by blind faith?

Easy there eager beaver!

…your new found self-discovery is creating a new ego from the one you just got rid of!!!!

what?

As we step into self-discovery and sun bathe in the first light shards of enlightenment it is easy to become intoxicated with this new found energy. Congratulations, you are on the path to Self-Actualization!

IT’S A TRAP!

what?

yep, that’s right…. In order to find this new self-discovery and enlightenment, you had to surrender at least a portion of your false-self or ego to connect more with your True Nature. The trap is that it is easy to fall into a more complex ego born from your new found vision. It is easy to step up on your soap box and preach this new age gospel. Beware, it is unbecoming… People do not want to hear it… Silence is the best wisdom… In fact, living by example is the best teacher… If you feel the need to tell people you meditated today or that you are vibrating at a higher level – or their religion is wrong;  that is your ego talking… not your True Nature…

Say less… Do more….

Don’t judge….

Be compassionate….

Sometimes silence is the best wisdom….

Hey, I have to self-check myself all the time – especially with family. It’s part of the journey and when you are mindful of your energy and place with this Universe and do not let it synthesize more ego – well, you just jumped to a new level in self-discovery and enlightenment….

And yes, this blog post is my friendly reminder….

more on Ego     ….more on True Nature   …more on what the Responsive Universe is…

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own Hero’s Journey.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

Photo Credit: Star Wars – George Lucas (big fan)

bangs092415

A  Facebook friend, Elaine Matthews, posted this very simple yet profound quote in her news feed recently. I just love the quote: ” Do not be afraid of your own darkness. Do not be blinded by your own light…”. What does that mean? I know what it means for me…

“Do not be afraid of your own darkness” – We all have pasts – some more torturous than others. We have all faced loss, defeat and yes, sometimes we are our worst enemies. The ego functions of the mind; born from the past and subliminal hard wire thoughts and behaviors; act as the point of intent for many of us. The ego is rooted in fear, anger, guilt, narcissism and a false sense of self-worth – whether positive or negative… Like looking in a mirror, that reflection; like the ego is a fabricated image of ourselves. Like storm clouds the ego can obscure the illumination that is intrinsic to our being. Deep down bubbles our True Nature – this unadulterated and unfettered true-self free from the constraints of societal immersion. For some the darkness is suffering and loss. Experience has shown that deep within the darkness wells lights – It is almost as though we need darkness to raise the vibration of our awareness and clarity. We all have darkness but having faith that light will find its way through the cracks in the walls of false-self, loss and suffering is key to self-discovery and betterment. Further, knowing when to accept the fruits of our labor and suffering is paramount. Do not fear the darkness for within its shadow lies a gift…

“Do not be blinded by your own light” – There lies the fine line between self-discovery and social evolution and the ability to not be sucked back into the ego abyss. It is a paradox of sorts: Through self-discovery the trap is growing another ego from your new found vision and power. Those mindful enough to see the light; to understand that we are just energy changing form – the power of god sitting within the palm of our hands; a spacious connection to this grand Responsive Universe: Well it is easy to let such understanding and power unknowingly rebuild the ego you just reigned in. In times of challenge, sometimes silence is the best wisdom. The lesson in mindfulness is to continually self-check our intent to ensure our actions and reactions remain rooted in True Nature and not False-Self. As illumination warms our face, we want to share this new insight with others but as I have found with excruciating detail; the best teachers lead by actions and not words – a lesson I continually need to remind myself daily. It is easy to become blinded by the light of self-discovery. The art of life is to let the light illuminate your path forward while leading others without dogmatic trappings.

The balance of Light and Darkness is not about opposites but the circle of energy that binds them as one: A Mandala… Both light and darkness exist together – the key is finding the balance between the two facets of human nature. Maybe that is why the hour before sunset is my favorite time of day…

John C. Bader is a photographer, wellness advocate and consultant specializing in spiritual self-evolution, meditation, and bio-energy healing. In his writing, he bridges science with spirituality and provides steps to encourage more mindfulness in daily life. His new book, The Responsive Universe – Illumination of the Nine Mandalas is a step by step process on how to begin your very own Hero’s Journey.

About the Book: www.responsiveuniverse.com

Now Available: Amazon    Barnes & Noble

The Responsive Universe on Facebook

John C. Bader on Twitter

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