Tag Archive: responsive universe


bangs10

From pain and suffering wells growth and evolution…

An uphill journey with sunset views at the apex of self-discovery

Merely a drop of water within the ocean of life

A cosmic atom and a dash of light –  splashed across the starry night

Intuition and True Nature your guiding illumination

No longer a slave to the past; an optimistic future within sight

The sun’s warmth bathes your face

a positive thought manifests dreams

Wisdom and mindfulness fuels  your inner light

A moment of silence takes flight…

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

There are two primary sanctuaries we can find solace and refuge in… Places that will invigorate the inner-being and connect us more with our True Nature.

The first is our mind. Through meditation and mindfulness there is this amazing, boundless temple within the mind that can create positive energy and contemplate wisdom. Between thoughts are the silent gaps of mindfulness. We have discussed these gaps between thoughts before and it is within these gaps that our True Nature and heart wish wells. The more you meditate the longer you will stretch those gaps between thoughts. The more mindful you become, the less control your ego and false-self will have on your daily thoughts, actions and reactions. Let your mind be your refuge, your temple, your place of empowerment. Instead of being a slave to the ego, let your mind be your church; a conduit to your True Nature within…

Head and heart

Nature is our second sanctuary. The raw unadulterated outdoors is a vortex of positive energy. I have never been in a bad mood after a walk through the forest. Places of natural beauty hold special metaphysical interest. We all need to find a special place in nature (especially near our home) where we can draw energy from. Whether it is in your backyard (for you lucky few) or simply steps away (or a quick drive away); I think it is important to find that special place where you can escape and refuel your body and mind. Forget the vacations that come once a year if we are fortunate enough; find that escape near your home where you can go and decompress; if only for a few minutes. Find that spot and find your center! From my experience, the Universe in all its intricacies handles the rest – if only for a moment.

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…and that moment is enough to relax, re-energize and dabble in Self-Discovery….

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

Spring Photo Series

Spring represents birth – regeneration – new life and new beginnings…. We are born from energy and thus an insignificant but most eloquently conscious entity – an intrinsic part of the system that is everything.

dusksillo

Silhouette

spring

Indications of Spring

justdating

Just Dating…

bangs7

Afterglow

For more images please visit johncbader.com

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

mandala

“Each person’s life is like a mandala – a vast, limitless circle. We stand in the center of our own circle, and everything we see, hear and think forms the mandala of our life…
~ Pema Chodron

This is a great quote from Pema Chodron; one of our great modern teachers of this era. I have written and defined a Mandala as a sphere of energy.  In its simplest form, Mandala means circle. It is an ancient Buddhist symbol of inner and outer space where everything is linked as one from which the Universe and all its energy arise.  We stand in the center of our circle and as we communicate with friends, family, community and society our proverbial sphere of influence tends to overlap much like the Olympic Rings overlap.

Basic subatomic physics now explains in painstaking detail that our thoughts and actions react and change the fabric of the Universe. When we look at matter at its smallest form in the laboratory you now have to include the observer (scientist) as part of the experiment or observation because just the act of observing matter at the subatomic level changes the outcome. This can be applied to the mechanics of God but on a more social level it explains with science how every action and reaction we create does in fact cause a ripple… a dynamism of energy (positive or negative) that effects others and our own destiny. This explains karma, the power of prayer and positive manifestation.

When we stand in the middle of our mandala; our personal circle of energy we will overlap into other peoples energy, thoughts, actions and reactions. Every small thought and action does matter. Like compound interest, positive and negative actions and reactions will add up over time to drive a mood, conversation or something more permanent within our lives and the lives of those we influence.

It’s another reason for acute mindfulness; especially in social situations. We wield more power than we realize. Remember that the next time you get mad or cause negativity in any facet. Not only does negativity effect those around you, it is you (the source) that tends to suffer the most…

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

A blog that I wrote in 2012 that is all of a sudden going viral this week… Its numbers are breaking records! So, I thought I would share it once again to our Responsive Universe social media family that has grown considerably of the years as well. Thanks for everyone’s energy and consideration! JCB

The Responsive Universe

All the gods, all the heavens, all the hells, are within you.”

– Joseph Campbell

This is a very powerful sentence…. It sometimes takes great minds like Joseph Campbell to effectively wrap up the Cosmos – everything that exists – in one eloquent sentence. Carl Sagan was able to effectively do this as well. Sadly both of these great teachers have passed but their words live on eternally. That is the distinct power of words isn’t it? The inspiration of this particular sentence comes from the great realization of the Upanishads of India in the ninth century B.C. I find it interesting that even thousands of years ago, people were reaching for the heavens and also inward to find the meaning of existence – the how and why…. But what I find truly interesting is that even thousands of years ago, wise people were connecting to this sublime dynamism that…

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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

 

kingprayer4n-7-webWhen we are born we are naked and vulnerable. Further at birth when we take those first few breaths; there is no evil, there is no racism, there is no religion or concept of God. As newborns we are like a blank canvas; free from social perception, ego, fear, anger, jealousy – even happiness. As newborns early existence is purely  based on subsistence strategies: Warmth and satiation the common denominator.

Other than certain gene precursors, it is society and culture that shapes us into the people we are today – good or bad; saintly or evil. Along the path of adolescence beauty is defined by society. Good and bad behavior is rewarded by the spoils of who is in charge with the most power. Blind faith governs most of our belief systems and people are soon divided by differences rather than united by our commonality.  And some people are more susceptible to this conditioning than others… ….And of course no one is perfect…

Blame big money corporations, close minded partisan news channels, religion and the powerful people who perpetuate this existence as a way to feed their own goals and agendas – rarely meeting our very own personal needs. Humans are flawed creatures; malleable like soft clay; easily molded to fit the form of ego, greed and power. Our needs, wants and desires are twisted and forged  to fit a specific trend or fashion, a specific religion or ideology – sometimes the message and goal so manipulated and bent no one is really sure what the original goal or message was. Anything pure and unadulterated has now been processed, prepackaged, made fun of, yelled at, occasionally hugged and kissed and then shown what is important socially by the few in power that control the collective masses with subliminal control patterns. And that is sugar-coating it….

But on a more visceral level, why do people kill and maim?

The answer to that is difficult. Humanity carries with it many variables so diverse and complex we see every facet of human action and reaction. Some actions are heartwarming and civic. Some actions are so atrocious and gut wrenching its hard to believe we all exist together on this sustainable rock called Earth as one human race. Money, greed, fear, ego and religion drive most of the violence and suffering on our planet. From terrorism to war, from famine to climate change, there is money, lobbyists and a powerful few driving the heartbeat of the world. Many ignorant and weak minded people buy into the lie – some so warped and diseased that they act on our worst fears. Still, there seems to be a disconnect when someone can justify picking up a gun and shooting up a building full of innocent people. This disconnection is rare but when it rears its ugly head it tends to shake us all to the core. I think these type of people have always existed but as technology and social media bind us as one breathing organism, such violence is amplified and the sorrow and pain cuts to the bone.

With all the hatred, pain, and war in the world, people often ask the question, “Why doesn’t God do something?” People are quick to send their prayers but is there a god listening? Is it all just hot air? The answer, however, is quite simple. Bad things happen and exist because of bad people. Likewise, good things happen because of good people. God is not a force that operates on a human level. It is egotistical to think that. God is the Universe, and the Universe is a system whose levels of operation still defy complete understanding. Quantum Physics is beginning to uncover our connections: The Universe does not have a human consciousness; instead, it creates an environment that allows for our independent, conscious thought. The power and energy of God is not contained in one supreme being, but rather, it is an instinctual energy that connects us all and that is everything and everywhere. Its quality is defined as True Nature. All humans are connected to this dynamism. Religions of the past and present are just antennae reaching up to understand and appreciate the Universe. The threads that make up this metaphorical tapestry that illustrates  you and I, God and Universe are all different colors woven together. Yet despite the differences in our explanations for creation and the world, we are all made of the same stuff—the Universe. Our differences within this tapestry of story and explanation, while colorful, are insignificant. We are all here on Earth with the same goal—to revel in the immensity of everything and carve within the Cosmos our own life of happiness and love, to weave our own tapestry, colorful and long.

When we come to realize we are all connected to this tapestry of energy, light and vibration you can see how terrorism and mass shootings shake us to the center of our being. In a way we are all connected to these acts of violence just like every atom and molecule is connected to its own kinship at the sub atomic level. There is no escape. In order to understand the violence we need to understand the source (hence my first three paragraphs). Our only foot forward is to counteract the violence, hate, division and greed with our own love, connection and positive energy. We can do this by living by example. There will always be hate in the world as long as humanity is malleable to money, greed and ego. We can however be mindful that there are other paths to follow. That compassion and love will always win over hate and oppression. All cultures and people need to remember that the moment we all took our first breaths as new born children, there was no hate, ego, racism and division. We were all naked; we were all a blank canvas. Thoughts and virtues were once pure and unadulterated before society, politics and religion twisted them into something less than authentic. I understand that terrorism and mass shootings are in a fucked up world of their own. Still, their extremist roots start somewhere and whether we like it or not, it has to do with whats going on in my first three paragraphs above…  So maybe ask yourself this… How malleable is your mind? You might not be a mass shooter and you probably couldn’t imagine anything so cruel;  but are you part of the problem or part of solution? Do you contribute to societies static or do you bring beautiful silence through celestial wisdom. Do you contribute to the machine or are you a free thinker? Are you a follower or are you able to forge your own path through the tangled forest that is life? These are valid questions…

There will always be storm clouds obscuring the warmth and sunlight but you can’t stop the sun from shining through eventually. Illumination will always find a way…. No matter how big a storm, the sun will shine again! We have to have faith in that notion. We are all connected. Every positive action and reaction does matter.

Image credit: Daily News

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

 

barefoot

The quieter you become, the more you can hear…

– Ram Dass

It’s a simple enough quote right? But what does it really mean?  Of course there is the literal meaning: When you are quiet you can hear others talk; like when my beautiful wife tells me to shut up so she can get a word in edgewise (just kidding  …. not really).

But is there a deeper meaning? What was meditation and Buddhist guru Ram Dass really implying?

The general goal of mindfulness and self-discovery is to quiet the endless parade of thoughts that march through our minds almost incessantly. Have you ever just stopped what you are doing and focused on the mind and its endless procession of thoughts? Try it sometime, there is a lot going on up there! This is how the mind works, but there is a drawback to this natural process. Most of our errant thoughts are rooted in the past and future – thoughts of fear, fantasy, frustration, envy and regret. Rarely are we completely rooted in the present moment. As Eckhart Tolle says – “The Power of Now”.

During mindfulness and meditation, when we are capable of slowing our thoughts down to more of a trickle instead of a river of chaos; there is something unique and special found within the gaps of thoughts. That’s right, within the gaps of thoughts. Pay close, special attention to your thoughts. Focus on the start of one thought and look for the gap when one thought ends and drifts off and another materializes. At first it is almost instantaneous with little or no gap. With the right mindfulness and concentration there is a distinguishable gap between thoughts.

What is the big deal? Well, that is where the magic lies. There in the quiet little reprises between our ego driven thought processes sits the answers to life’s biggest quandaries.  It is there in the silence between thoughts that our True Nature wells. There within the gaps of thoughts sits silence – a level of acute clarity, awareness and responsiveness. As Eckhart Tolle has famously said – “Stillness Speaks”, and it is there in the silence between thoughts that your true heart wish emanates. It is there in the silence that wisdom and energy arises – healing, intuitive and blissful.

So, the more quiet you become, the more you can hear. It is there in the gaps of thoughts that we find our true-self; sans of ego and the pressures and control patterns of societal immersion. It is there in the silence that we find this beautiful connection to the Responsive Universe.

What if we could stretch those gaps within thoughts? What if we could live within them? There lies the goal of Self-Discovery. The quieter you become, the more you can hear…

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

Meditation Part V

The Responsive Universe

We can take meditation much further in an effort to evolve and root our being within this amazing Responsive Universe. We have within our ability the power to manifest our own creative reality. Those that are mindful of the present now realize that our True Nature is unwavering and something we can always rely on. Our True Nature is the environment from which the instinctual energy of the Universe and God vibrates across an electromagnetic field of pulses. We are interconnected to this field of energy through body and mind.  Knowing this, we can be confident that the world is ours to possess because we are intimately connected to it. We do not need to rely on religious trappings and blind faith. Everything we need is already inside us; it just takes time and effort to reveal these truths. As discussed in the Seventh Mandala (Responsive Universe), we have the ability to…

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