When I go out to meet the light, the shadow of my body follows me, but the shadow of my spirit precedes me and leads the way to an unknown place
- Kahlil Gibran

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Yesterday as I was reading from Gregg Braden's book and transcribing some of the content to my Blog, a woman in her early 30s approached me with a folder, ID card and tin. Sensing a solicitor, I was on guard immediately. She introduced herself but I was barely listening, my automated "No, thanks" response was on the tip of my tongue. I asked her to re-introduce herself and she showed me her paper ID, then presented me with a home made binder containing local articles from newspapers and magazines in various languages describing a home for disabled children run by a lady named Dhanapakiyam. One article showed her receiving an award from Reader's Digest for her humanitarian efforts and how she turned her life around - the only Malaysian ever to receive one.

She said, "I volunteer at this place and today is my off day but I'm going around town looking for donations. I'm hot and tired. Could I please sit down with you?" I pulled out a chair for her and took a good look at the contents of the binder. This woman was selling decals as a form of donation, each one cost $10 and it showed a simple winking moon faced character holding a badminton racket swatting at a shuttlecock. "The children designed it" she explained. I was moved out of admiration for her zeal and compassion for the people living in the home. I pulled out $50 and handed it to her in exchange for 5 decals. She thanked me and then left.

Today I had a conversation with my parents and I described the incident to them. "I'm afraid you were scammed" came their response. I adamantly rejected the claim. My father said, "I had the same thing happen to me recently, I asked the guy to give me an address to mail the check and he paled." He went on, "These people are all over town, you can't trust them." I felt like a fool as I often did with my parents and I was torn, the feeling of joy that I had helped people in need was mutating into bitterness and dejection. "It's the thought that counts" was their consolation. This was the standard excuse for people to brush off others in need, I didn't want this to be the last time I gave to a charity worker in the street. I needed to still believe that there ARE people that can be trusted when reaching out for help in such a way.

I turned to Google and looked for the phone number of the home in the town she mentioned. I called the number of a place that matched the description. The lady that answered told me that they DID have a charity drive last month but they used a blue form that was filled out on location. They did not authorize people to solicit donations on their behalf in the street. The numbness was setting in... before I hung up I asked just to be sure, "who is the person in charge? Is she an Indian lady that received an award from Reader's Digest?" She said it wasn't, she didn't know whom I was speaking of. I asked, "Is there another home such as yours in that town?" She didn't know of any other.

I tried again on Google. this time I looked for the name of the Malaysian lady (whom I couldn't recall) by typing in Readers Digest and Malaysian award. It's amazing how little publicity this sort of thing gets as opposed to terrorist acts and other dehumanizing forms of news. There were few articles returned and even then the first few were irrelevant hits. Finally I found one that did describe the event. It mentioned her name and I used her name along with the town to track down her phone number. I called her and a small voice answered on the other side. I asked her, "Is this Danapakiyam?" She confirmed it was and I introduced myself then described the events of the day before. "Yes, that is correct." she responded. Relief and joy flooded through me.

Praying "Rain"

It had been a time of extreme drought in the high deserts of northern New Mexico, when my native friend David invited me to an ancient stone circle to "pray rain."  After meeting at a prearranged location, I followed him on an early-morning hike through a valley that contained more than 100,000 acres of high-desert sage.  After walking for a couple of hours, our journey led us to a place that David had been to many times before and knew very well.  It was an earthen circle made of stones arranged in perfect geometries of lines and arrows, just the way the hands of its maker had placed them long ago. 

             "What is this place?" I asked.  "This is the reason that we have come." David laughed.  "This stone circle is a medicine wheel that has been here for as long as my people can remember."  He continued, "The wheel itself has no power.  It serves as a place of focus for the one invoking the prayer.  You could think of it as a road map - a map between humans and the forces of this world."  Anticipating my next questions, David described how he'd been taught the language of this map from the time that he was a young boy.  "Today," he said, "I will travel an ancient path that leads to other worlds.  From those worlds, I will do what we came here to do.  Today, we pray rain."

             I wasn't prepared for what I saw next.  I watched carefully as David removed his shoes, gently placed his naked feet into the circle, and honored the four directions and all of his ancestors.  Slowly, he placed his hands in front of his face in a praying position, closed his eyes, and became motionless.  Oblivious to the heat of the midday desert sun, his breathing slowed and became barely noticeable.  After only a few moments, he took a deep breath, opened his eyes to look at me, and said, "Let's go.  Our work is finished here."

Expecting to see dancing, or at least some chanting, I was surprised by how quickly his prayer began and then ended.  "Already?" I asked.  "I thought you were going to pray for rain!"  David's reply to my question has been the key that helped so many to understand this kind of prayer.  As he sat on the ground to lace up his shoes, David looked up at me and smiled.  "No," he replied.  "I said that I would pray rain.  If I had prayed for rain, it could never happen." Later in the day, David explained what he meant by this statement. 

He began by describing how the elders of his village had shared the secrets of prayer with him when he was a young boy.  The key, he said, is that when we ask for something to happen, we give power to what we do not have.  Prayers for healing empower the sickness.  Prayers for rain empower the drought.  "Continuing to ask for these things only gives more power to the things that we would like to change," he said.

I think about David's words often, and what they could mean in our lives today.  If we pray for world peace, for example, while feeling tremendous anger toward those who lead us into war, or even war itself, we may inadvertently be fueling the very conditions that lead to the opposite of peace!  With half of the world's nations now engaged in armed conflict, I often wonder what role millions of well-intentioned prayers for peace each day may be playing, and how a slight shift in perspective could possibly change that role.

Looking back at David, I asked, "If you didn't pray for rain, then what did you do?"

"It's simple," he replied.  "I began to have the feeling of what rain feels like.  I felt the feeling of rain on my body, and what it feels like to stand with my naked feet in the mud of our village plaza because there has been so much rain.  I smelled the smells of rain on the earthen walls in our village, and felt what it feels like to walk through fields of corn chest high because there has been so much rain."


- Gregg Braden from "The Lost Mode of Prayer"

The Lost Mode of Prayer (I)

I am sitting here in MidValley by the gardened boulevard with a delectable mocha and I am reading a book that is reviving my spirit.  I just have to share this pieces of this wisdom:
On this day, we found ourselves in some of the most remote, isolated, magnificent, and sacred places of knowledge remaining on Earth today: the monasteries of the Tibetan plateau....
I focused my attention directly into the eyes of the beautiful and timeless-looking man seated lotus-style in front of me: the abbot of the monastery. Through our translator, I'd just asked him the same question that I'd asked each monk and nun that I'd met throughout my pilgrimage: "When we see your prayers," I began, "what are you doing? When we see you tone and chant for 14 and 16 hours a day, when we see the bells, the bowls, the gongs ,the chimes, the mudras, and the mantras on the outside, what is happening to you on the inside?"
As the translator shared the abbot's reply, a powerful sensation rippled through my body, and I knew that this was the reason we'd come to this place.  "You have never seen our prayers," he answered, "because a prayer cannot be seen."  Adjusting the heavy wool robe beneath his feet, the abbot continued.  "What you have seen is what we do to create the feeling in our bodies.  Feeling is the prayer!"
The clarity of the abbot's answer sent me reeling.  His words echoed the ideas that had been recorded in ancient Gnostic and Christian traditions more than 2,000 years ago.  In early translations of the biblical book of John (chapter 16, verse 24, for example), we're invited to empower our prayers by being surrounded by [feeling] our desires fulfilled, just as the abbot suggested: "Ask without hidden motive and be surrounded by your answer."  For our prayers to be answered, we must transcend the doubt that often accompanies the positive nature of our desire.  Following a brief teaching on the power of overcoming such polarities, the words of Jesus recorded in the Nag Hammadi Library remind us that when we do this, and say to the mountain, "'Mountain move away,' it will move away."
 - Gregg Braden

Friday, May 8, 2009

Iridology update

In reference to my earlier post here... I have been taking the supplements faithfully 3 times a day for about a week now.  And the difference in me is encouraging.  The jury is still out on the spine, my back still bothers me though the symptoms are different now.  The discomfort is more localized and my muscle are less tense but it is there nonetheless and the level of pain doesn't seem to be getting less.  On the other hand, I am sleeping better at night, it doesn't wake me like it used to and I get out of bed easier in the morning. 

I feel more energetic, better blood flow, better concentration and I've dropped some weight.  I eat less now.  In fact on the fourth day of the program I noticed a sharp drop in my appetite for food and drink.  Only water seemed to be desired.  It was as though my body was going through a detox.  I recall the iridologist mentioning that our cells regenerate every four days, I wonder if this had something to do with it.  

On the tennis court, Azmil, my coach has noticed similar improvements in my performance. He said, "You get tired less now, better ball focus, you're looser on the court.  From your agility, I can see your lower back is not as tight as it used to be."

I am not sure if Iridology is to be given all credit for my better tennis.  Oneness Blessing too claims to boost an athlete's performance or even an artist's creativity because of the boost in activity in the frontal lobes.  Maybe it's a bit of both, but I've never had such a blast hitting the tennis ball these days.  Nowadays I can see the ball suspended in the air for a split second before I contact it with confident ferocity.  

I am already convinced to continue pursuing this program.  I took a look at articles on the internet about Iridology and I was taken aback by how it tends to be discredited by the medical profession even citing studies that debunk it.  No big surprise, alternative medicine is never supported by the established medical society.  It just goes to demonstrate that nothing is to be believed, even when you are told NOT to believe.  Go seek the truth for yourself.  

It is worthwhile mentioning that the supplements I've started are NOT drugs nor meant to replicate any of the body's normal production of enzymes/amino acids.  Instead they are nutrients that aid the body in the natural  production of such.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

A Quick Recovery

Overnight I have recovered from my dark mood.  It seems my emotions run stronger in both directions these days, whether it is positive or negative.  My unbridled foul mouthed rant against that which draws me on my quest, call it God or the Truth.  It dislodged some old resentments that were never expressed out of fear of repercussion.  My Christian upbringing taught me of a God to be feared and not to be challenged, to do so would risk falling out of favor and then perhaps fire or brimstone would fall on me.  But I've since learned to vent and there are a lot of old hurts that are being released.  A relationship that does not allow for such expression cannot be healthy nor realistically sustained.  To accept that I am loved unconditionally by God would be of significant import that would free me to tread my own path of inquiry deviating from a version of truth that was packaged, branded and handed to me.  I never asked for the package but then again no one ever chooses their version of reality, it is their luck of the draw when given their belief package by their parents after birth.  With the acceptance of unconditional love there is no longer fear of repercussion.  At some point I dared to take a good look at the classic depiction of God as a vengeful judge; if I could upset the big guy in the sky then isn't he subject to me?  And if it there so, then why did he make us (all 6 billion of us) so damn incapable of abiding by a set of rules, does he enjoy being disappointed constantly on a daily basis billions of times?  So I chose that what matters more is the intention, at some point we need to step out of line and walk another direction trusting that no one who does so would slip through His/Her fingers.

It has been a year since I left my unrestricted comfortable life in California and had I been told I would not have achieved certain results in my life by this time, I wonder if I would have still started down this path.  The fact is that the perfect job had come my way before I left Malaysia, precisely as I had declared it but I had let it slip away.  What happens when one makes a misstep or doesn't step through an opened door that was meant for them?  Am I now living the life that is unscripted down a lost path, have I fallen out of favor with my guide never to redeem myself.  Never mind then I thought New Zealand was my Promised Land but it wasn't, waters didn't magically part for me.. though a helicopter did bring me back to the beginning. Maybe I simply chose wrongly again, it could be I should have just not gotten on the helicopter and carried on.  What would then have been waiting for me at the end of the trek and with a few more days in New Zealand.  Essentially I have become fearful and angry but the rant was a huge catharsis for today I feel so much lighter and capable.  Having moved some blocks, my faith is restored and feel plugged in once again to the higher powers.  I am ready to take up my cross again.  

My view has changed a lot, I used to believe in a fatherly figure in the sky that would protect me and grant me miracles if I just were to listen and abide with his set of rules.  Then that notion dissolved to be replaced with a greater burden of responsibility... I too am a creator, and God is a lot closer than I though whispering in my ear "you want the miracles?  create them!   Or rather intend them then step out of the way.  There are no other rules and no reasons to doubt, unless you've judged yourself as unworthy, because then that will be your truth also.  You are always right and you are always creating".

"Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field.  I will meet you there." - Rumi

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The lows get lower

Today I hate the world.  I am tired and the bitterness is fueled by unmet expectations; risks and efforts undertaken over time that yield no results. My only accomplishment is accomplishing nothing.  I find myself completely ineffectual in every endeavor I don't want to try anymore I'm done lifting my head up.  Why not conserve energy and be idle, the destination is the same.  I rage against the strings attached to my limbs, I do not wish to play anymore.  The puppeteer looks malevolent, and delights in my suffering taking me through the paces of a fool.  Who is the puppeteer and where are these strings attached?  Of course the self-help gurus will point out it is my mind, but my spirit is losing ground and there are no allies in the battlefield within myself.  The enemy wears many faces; he is too dominant and the attacks are relentless.  On the outside I face a world that tells me over and over again that I am the one dreaming, not them.  I want to start over, where is the reset button?  Let me retake the tests, I know the answers now.  

I started this Blog a year ago to color my world in a pleasing way; but the brighter shades have run out, there are only dark grey pencils left in the box.