Uncreated Light

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Jesus Ascends to Heaven in the UnCreated Light from upon Mt. Tabor

In Eastern Orthodox theology, the Tabor Light (also Light of Tabor, Tabor’s Light, Taboric Light; Greek: Φῶς του Θαβώρ, also as Ἄκτιστον Φῶς, Uncreated Light, Θεῖον Φῶς, Divine Light; Russian: Фаворский свет) is the light revealed on Mount Tabor at the Transfiguration of Jesus, identified with the light seen by Paul at his conversion.

As a theological doctrine, the uncreated nature of the Light of Tabor was formulated in the 14th century by Gregory Palamas, an Athonite monk, defending the mystical practices of Hesychasm against accusations of heresy by Barlaam of Calabria. When considered as a theological doctrine, this view is known as Palamism after Palamas.

The view was very controversial when it was first proposed, sparking the Hesychast controversy, and the Palamist faction prevailed only after the military victory of John VI Kantakouzenos in the Byzantine civil war of 1341–1347. Since 1347, it has been the official doctrine in Eastern Orthodoxy, while it remains without explicit affirmation or denial by the Roman Catholic Church. Roman Catholic theologians have rejected it in the past, but Andreas Andreopoulos has said that now “the Western world has started to rediscover what amounts to a lost tradition. Hesychasm, which was never anything close to a scholar’s pursuit, is now studied by Western theologians who are astounded by the profound thought and spirituality of late Byzantium.”[3] Speaking of the hesychast controversy, Pope John Paul II said the term “hesychasm” refers to a practice of prayer marked by deep tranquillity of the spirit intent on contemplating God unceasingly by invoking the name of Jesus. While from a Catholic viewpoint there have been tensions concerning some developments of the practice, the Pope said, there is no denying the goodness of the intention that inspired its defence, which was to stress that man is offered the concrete possibility of uniting himself in his inner heart with God in that profound union of grace known as theosis, divinization.

Source: Wikipedia: Uncreated Light

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Psalm 88, Thursday 2/19/15

O Lord, God of my salvation, I have cried out day and night before You. Let my prayer come before You; incline Your ear to my cry. For my soul is full of troubles, and my life draws near to the grave. I am counted with those who go down to the pit; I am like a man who has no strength, Adrift among the dead, like the slain who lie in the grave, whom You remember no more, and who are cut off from Your hand. You have laid me in the lowest pit, in darkness, in the depths. Your wrath lies heavy upon me, and You have afflicted me with all Your waves. You have put away my acquaintances far from me; You have made me an abomination to them; I am shut up, and I cannot get out; My eye wastes away because of affliction. Lord, I have called daily upon You; I have stretched out my hands to You. Will You work wonders for the dead? Shall the dead arise and praise You? Shall Your lovingkindness be declared in the grave? Or Your faithfulness in the place of destruction? Shall Your wonders be known in the dark? And Your right­eousness in the land of forgetfulness? But to You I have cried out, O Lord, and in the morning my prayer comes before You. Lord, why do You cast off my soul? Why do You hide Your face from me? I have been afflicted and ready to die from my youth up; I suffer Your terrors; I am distraught. Your fierce wrath has gone over me; Your terrors have cut me off. They came around me all day long like water; they engulfed me altogether. Loved one and friend You have put far from me, and my acquaintances into darkness.

Lord have mercy, Kyrie Eleison, Lord have mercy

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Favorite Ram Dass on the Lawfulness of the Universe
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Ram Dass nails this. It was so good, I just had to repost it.

All credits and copyrights are to Baba Ram Dass

Here is the link to his site, which I highly recommend:

Ram Dass – The Lawfulness of the Universe

Artwork by Sam Brown
It turns out that the universe is lawful – not in a logical law, by the way. The law I’m talking about is what would be called the divine law. That is, it’s not logical law in the sense that a is a and not b. It’s the law that includes paradox and all possibility. Within that law of the universe, everything that is in form – whether it is on this physical plane or on any of the other planes I’ve been talking about – is all perfectly lawful. When we reduce it to our logical analogue, which is not an exact analogue but similar, we can think in deterministic frameworks. There is no free choice in the deterministic system. That is, if the laws are just running off, they are just running off, and the experience of the free choice is merely another run-off of the law. And under those conditions the past, present, and future are all perfectly lawfully related to one another.
Because we are in time, we think that the future has not yet happened. But it’s very much like being a character in a book, and you’re on page 23 and you don’t know what’s going to happen on page 24, because you think you’re the character in the book. But now imagine you’re reading the book – well, you could turn over and find out what happened on page 24. Now imagine you wrote the book. You would already know what happened on page 24. Hinduism and all these dualistic religio-philosophic movements talk about “the One” or the “one guru,” or satguru, or however you want to talk about it; Judaism says “The Lord is One,” and Jesus says, “My father and I are one.” When you go into these traditions, you see that when he has extricated himself from the attachment I’ve been talking about – physical, subtle, and all these different vibrational frequency plays – then he and consciousness are the same thing. And of course since it is all interchangeable, there’s only one of it. The way in which it keeps manifesting in form or in these different planes and coming down into clouds and then solids – and all this is perfectly lawful – you would say in effect, “He is the law.” God is the law.
That’s the way the word “God” finally comes in, which is a hard one for us. But you could say that’s why the Jews were so interested in the law, and what the Ten Commandments were that Moses brought back. Because the universe of form is merely the lawful manifestation of this energy into patterns, and because it is all lawful – past, present, and future – all are already. Therefore when you are around this being, my guru you see that he is no more in the present than in the past or the future, and to him it’s all equally available. Often when I’m sitting with him he would look at a being and later in just a little conversation when it just comes out for some karmic reason I don’t fully understand, he’ll say something about what’s going to happen to that guy. In the Tibetan tradition there’s like a lama who sends out postcards saying, “Next Thursday at 2 I’m leaving my body. I’m going to die. I hope you will come join me.” And everybody gathers at the Thursday at 2 and he turns around three times, he sits down, and he dies. You know that a fully conscious being always knows exactly the moment he’s going to die, if he cared. When he is going to “drop his body” is what the expression is – and that really is what it is, dropping the body. It means dying to the physical plane. Ramana Maharshi, very beautiful, had cancer of the arm and he wouldn’t have it treated and the devotees said, “Oh Bhagavan – God – take care of your body.” And he said, “No, it’s finished its work on this plane.” They said, “Don’t leave us; don’t leave us.” And he looked at them like he was bewildered, and he said, “Where can I go? Just because you’re not going to see me on the plane you’re addicted to, do you think I’m going anywhere?”
My experience with my guru over this time is that in five years he has slowly taken me over – which is a hard one for Westerners. Like my father asks me, “Are you getting married?” – because the woman I used to live with is in India with my guru, and he keeps calling her Mrs. Ram Dass. So I say, “I don’t know, he hasn’t told me yet.” My father comes out of the tradition where you don’t ask somebody else if you are going…”What do you mean, he hasn’t told you?” he says. “Don’t you make any decisions on your own?” And I say, “No.” No. Now from our point of view we really think we lost something. In the Christian Bible it’s called “Not my will, but Thy will, O Lord.” Because once you realize you are not who you thought you were anyway – how long do you want to play out the little melodrama that you think you’re doing it all? And if you don’t think you’re doing it all, and it’s still all lawful, you might as well just sit and listen to how it all came out. That’s the “Not my, but Thy will.” It’s what is called surrender – which we find so horrible because when we think of the word “surrender” we think of one ego surrendering to another. But if you imagine just surrendering into the law or surrendering the illusion that you are the choice maker… The idea is, when you surrender, is the result chaos? Is Freud right? Is the whole idea right that who we are is a wild animal? Or is that just more of the program?
– Ram Dass, excerpt from The Only Dance There Is

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Is Our Faith Based Upon Belief or Experience?

What makes us have faith?

Is it something that is learned? or earned? or a validation of belief via experience? or pure experience?

Is it a gift? something we were born with? something we ‘came on to’? a result of Grace? a result of trauma?

Is it miraculous events? surviving a traumatic life/death event? seeing or hearing or feeling an event that transcends what we know as our day to day reality?

Is it coincidence? serendipity? destiny? fate? the Will of God? an Angel’s guidance or protection? the intervention of a friend? or the intervention of a stranger?

FAITH to me is a most ephemeral and mercurial element of a belief system. Faith comes and goes, or so it seems. Perhaps it is that you experience the faith for which you have the capacity to experience, until you are so familiar with it, it seems to be normal, and part of your everyday life.

Then, BOOM, something happens and your are thrown into a spin, or you are inspired, or something transports your alertness/presence/aliveness to a new level… So, then you are filled with a sense of renewal, or loss, or pain, but clearly your faith has been impacted. There is ALWAYS benefit to you from your faith being impacted. It may look like you are being pushed to the limit, at the end of your rope, but on the other side of it (if you can hand it over in prayer as a gift), you find your faith is deeper and less shake-able….

Maybe, one day you simply wake up, and realize that your faith is tangible, and that you can rely upon it. Not backslide, but know that it is there when you need it. It is a spiritual muscle, if you will, that once recognized, can be nurtured, appreciated, shared, cultivated by prayer, exposure to deepening events such as vigils, workshops, retreats, silence, common practice in community (like a monastery or weekend/week-long retreat). Let’s say it becomes more tangible as you ‘live through it’, which gives you more confidence in it’s availability and stability.

I often wondered about, questioned and pondered on this topic of FAITH and what is it? How does it come to be? Some are never exposed to the idea that any such thing exists, some are raised with it, some find it and are ecstatic about it, and some simply ignore it.

What is my faith? On what is it based? Why do I even ask about it? What makes me ponder and explore?

For me, I could not imagine NOT having some degree of faith. I believe that faith is ‘hooked into’ trust. Do you trust yourself? If you don’t – does that mean you have no faith? Do you have faith, but do not trust yourself? Do you have trust in others, but have no faith? Do you say you have faith, but do not trust any one?

Faith seems to be an experiential learning that grows as it is challenged.

More to come…(still drafting!)

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Joy – and what yours does for others

If you were born with a natural joy, and a desire to express that joy,

and even learned how to transmit that joy through your talents, natural or learned,

and have had that as the core of your life and being,

you were born to bring light into this world.

Many people spread and provide light and have no idea that is what they are doing.

Let your natural joy overflow into your world however it may happen!!! and you will lift those around you in such a way that they will remember you always.

Be Joyful! Be Lightful!

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Intimacy of Consent

cropped-Kankhanjangha_Mtn_Sikkim.pngIn the book “The Cloud of Unknowing”, it is stated that God experiences the world through you – when your intent is to consent (you give him permission) to be with you.

He loves you so much and respects your free will so – that it is you who grants him permission to be with you. That consent is the source of wisdom or ignorance, awakened or asleep, the cloud of unknowing or the cloud of forgetting, oneness or separation.

It is in this transformative Experience that you are in a full exchange and relationship at an intimacy deeper than breath.

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