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"We are not separate
from spirit,
we are in it."

Plotinus

Lessons of the Soul
(Part 2)

From the perspective of consciousness-as-self, there really is no contradiction between "creationism" and "evolution". The evolutionary process is creative. The intelligent creation of the natural world in which we live, accounts for our evolution as mammals. When we realize that self and universe are based on consciousness, both creationist and evolutionary models of existence become complimentary, rather than antagonistic. Neither creation nor evolution have stopped. In order for something to evolve, higher forms must be created. Every new phase of life that is created accelerates the evolutionary process even further. Humanity is no exception to this rule. Even now there are natural, intelligent forces acting upon us, propelling us forward to new levels of being, regardless of social trends to the contrary.

It is the wise who actively participate in the process of their own evolution. They purposefully harness their ultimate creative force&intent. When we INTEND to expand our consciousness to greater and greater degrees, we are in essence engaging, "the intentional evolution of the human being".

Always does evolution imply change. That which does not change through growth begins to stagnate and die. It is important to understand this natural law on a social level. Society behaves in a manner which implies a belief in an unchanging status quo. Our lives however, will not remain eternally consistent with current norms. Within the span of a decade, we will no doubt see unprecedented change at all levels of human life. The fact is, the current norms cannot last. Change is upon us, and if we are to evolve we must embrace it.

Human evolution involves social revolution.

A grass roots revolution of modern lifestyle will be coupled with a shift of inner focus. We will be compelled by necessity, to turn away from materialistic goals that exist for the sake of social ego. From this essential shift of values there will arise a general realization; that the material world is best seen only as a tool for greater things.

Material achievement is essentially useless, when it is not also accompanied by spiritual purpose.

Thus the building of cities and factories is trivial compared to the building of greater levels of being within. Edwin Markham said, "In vain we build the city, if we do not first build the man". Ultimately then, material achievement is not the goal of human existence. Material improvements are useful only to the degree they are applied to the unification of humankind, in spiritual purpose. Our purpose on this planet is to further advancement our own evolution, and that of nature in general. This is the purpose of all life in fact. As the spiritual stewards of the Earth it is our responsibility and privilege, to wisely apply natural laws for the sake of enhancing Nature itself.

The present motive of nations and persons in the modern world, is still based primarily upon the idea that "progress" is defined in terms of economics and technology, rather than by wisdom. It is not. Material existence is only a reflection of hidden spiritual forces, just as the pattern of iron filings around a magnet, demonstrate unseen cause. Strangely enough, despite much talk of God and spirituality, most of us still behave as though the material world should be our first priority. We are all well acquainted with the concept of soul. Yet we think of ourselves in terms of bodies, and to a lesser extent, minds. We tend to think of nations as gross national products and cultural trends, rather than as a collection of souls in group-mind consensus. But the truth is, human beings are spirits in bodies. Our purpose is therefore inherently spiritual. The true source of the natural world is universal laws and the sentience of Consciousness itself. Nature is a spiritual entity, as it too is composed of consciousness. It as much a "manifestation of God", (Consciousness) as we are.

The progressive minded embrace of nature, can be found through Native, Indigenous views & that the interconnectedness and diversity of all life is sacred. Nature is as much a Holy temple for sincere, sacred contemplation, as is any church, mosque or shrine. This Consciousness, (as it is referred to in the East) or God, (as it is referred to in the West) is the true source of material forms. It is the shaper of physical events. This same Consciousness composes our very souls. It is likewise contained in the merger of electron and proton, and in the slow swirl of galaxies. Connecting consciousness is the unified field of physics. This Force provides a felt glance from across a crowded room, the ecstatic, mutual aura of lovers and the simultaneous roar of concert or sporting crowds. Consciousness Watches and Moves through us all. It flows in streams and rises up in various feeling currents through the body. It similarly provokes spontaneous images in the mind, which originated from other people or the cosmos in general. Consciousness patterns, directs and shapes all of existence. It is in each atom and cell of our bodies, and is evidenced in breakfast table conversations as well as international relations.

The Watcher and Mover, (the awareness and intent of consciousness) within, survives physical death with calm self-assurance. This it does just as the physical body shrugs off a change of clothes. The traveler of lifetimes that is the soul, calls no one life its own. Each is seen as yet another passing phase in a long process of discovery. Without particular attachment the soul views a given physical lifetime, simply as a single set of experiences. Interestingly, this is just what the ego does in its treatment of a given calendar week. Most day to day memories are basically unimportant to us in the long-term scope of life. This is why only the highlights of memory are retained by our minds with regard to the events of a given week last year, for instance. The vast majority of perceptions in our daily lives do not last, which is fortunate since this clears the mind for new information and experiences. Most day to day memories would clutter the mind with trivia if they were preserved. So it is for the soul, while it oversees the events of many physical lives. Each incarnation taken by the soul, (and there have been a great many) is but a single link of experience, in a very long chain of lifetimes. A physical lifetime for a soul is like a single week for the mind. Only the soul possesses the oversight to recall the highlights of the entire chain. This is the expanded perspective of an immortal, who picks and chooses the best of each life, like a collector of sacred objects. These it preserves for the sake of greater enlightenment and self-mastery.

Primarily, the best qualities of human endeavor come from the soul, or are at the very least channeled through it. The soul or true self acts as a spiritual conduit to the Universal Intelligence, (that is the Soul, or "God-Consciousness") of the Cosmos. Our inner reality then, has the potential for unlimited creativity and insight. To tap this unlimited potential however, necessitates our personal identification with soul and Spirit, rather than money and nations. Making such a shift of values and lifestyle, requires honesty, commitment and most of all detachment, from almost everything we have been raised to hold as desirable. This is true if even if it means departing from old ways and old relationships. Each person alive today must soon conclusively choose; as to which life they will lead. Will you lead the inner life as a first priority, or will you lead the outer one? Will you choose freedom through the trial of change, or will you choose a sense of false security through material distractions?

Inspired soulic qualities express themselves in the arts, in music, dance, painting, sculpture, writing, film, and other (potentially) enlightening mediums. Inspiration, invention, social progress and spiritual motivation, most often spring from the deep roots of the consciousness within. In fact it is very often the case that so-called "channels", who claim intimate communication with advanced entities from other planes, (or planets) are actually "channeling" their own souls. In essence, we are all "channels" to "entities", (our own souls). Many channels are merely connecting to their own inner source of wisdom, and mistakenly "flavoring" that connection with personality constructs. This fact reflects the current cultural trend of denying direct human responsibility in all areas of life. We are conditioned to "give our power away" to external agencies, including governments, corporations, religions, ethnic bias, doctors, lawyers, judges, armies and inter-galactic visitors. As the human spiritual perspective matures, it will carry with it a greater emphasis upon personal and collective responsibility. This will be seen as a matter of correct prioritization. When such prioritization occurs, people will experience an increasing willingness to See, Know and Act for ourselves, as conscious beings. We will then be prepared to take full responsibility for our collective actions, as a global species.

Also of soulic origin, (usually) are those tendencies of kindness seen occurring spontaneously among our race. Basic human benevolence and its associated good will, stems from the recognition had by the true self of soulic oneness. Deep within we all know of the brotherhood and sisterhood of humanity, as One in Unity. Our souls are composed of consciousness, and conscious knows no true boundaries, politics, or philosophies.

As souls we are all made spiritual equals, in potential and essence. Thus, the soul understands unity because this is its continual experience, as a sophisticated center of consciousness. There is no point of disconnection in this ocean of energy, awareness and intent in which we live. We only feel disconnected by believing we are merely minds trapped in bodies. Cooperation and unity will be our natural and continual experience, upon embracing connectivity as the soul does.

From the true self springs the compassion to aid those in pain, and to alleviate the cause of suffering. It seeks to replace ignorance with self-reliance and realization. From the soul arises the will to love others in peace, as the mutual keepers of our common welfare. It is within acts of good will that render aid to any or all, without the expectation of social compensation, that qualify themselves to be called "spiritual, (soulic) ministry".

Spiritual practice enhances the "qualities of the soul", which our current society so deeply thirsts for. For such qualities humanity is said to strive, but they are all too often overshadowed by unnatural values. The prime cause then of our "moral dilemma", is not some esoteric reservoir of cosmic evil, but rather, the way life is viewed and lived day to day. Of kindness, love, compassion and charity we may collectively speak, but words only do these remain, until more among our kind achieves a deep rapport with the true self.

The prime requisite in the accomplishment of a steady soul-mind-body connection is strong desire, based on a love for Truth. This must become an intention that is evidenced by action, each and every day. Truth that is lived becomes wisdom. Wisdom is our practical, concrete need. Our intention to expand consciousness must be firm, with resolve as spiritual practitioners ultimately unshakable, regardless of current world conditions. Regardless of what happens in human society, the needs of spirit and self realization will always remain constant. Truth is all that is, or will ever be of any real importance. In realizing this we find the strength to transcend culturally induced fears or bias. Much inertia exists behind the destructive trends of millennia past. Today these trends are witnessed in unnatural social values, egotism and consumerism. These three entropic forces are destroying our world faster than any other cause. Only the expansion of consciousness, which itself accounts for motive, (intent) in every act ever performed, will provide a lasting cure to the modern crisis. As a race, we greatly need the perspective of the soul and its overview of the true purpose of life. Then our spiritual progression will become a daily reality.

The results of destruction have caused many to assume that the presence of God, (or the good graces of Nature) has been withdrawn from the face of the world in disfavor. This has never been, nor will it ever be the actual case. Our crisis is a matter of karma, (cause and effect). The world effects we see today spring from the cause of unnatural aims, compounded over millennia of time. It is we who have drawn away from the purposes of our own souls, of Nature and God, in favor of material rewards for their own sensual or egotistical sake. Humanity s self-fashioned errors have made the world seem spirit-less, as a place forsaken of quality living. Our alignment with the paradise that is nature and natural law, has become only a distant memory for most of us. To regain paradise, we must again embrace the natural qualities of love and crystalline perception. These are known most clearly by the soul.

The diligent practices of meditation, of physical and mental purification, as well as social unity in spiritual cause, are needed more by each of us now than in any previous era. We must ever realize the purposes of the soul through these consciousness-expanding mediums. Through an identification with consciousness itself, society may regain natural purity in daily living. In knowing self as soul, we shall also perceive the common essence of Self within our fellow human beings. In self-realization we eventually see what is mutual and universal, regardless of social training. In consciousness there is a unity of cosmic purpose. Such self-realization will enable our race to survive the current planetary turning point.

Collective crisis is not essentially different by nature, than that which is experienced by the individual seeker of truth. Both are a matter of de-conditioning from common assumptions, and the gaining of self-knowledge. In self-knowingness alone, will right action be found. The question is whether or not the majority of us will act upon the truth of self as consciousness, when that becomes known. Knowledge itself is not wisdom. Only the true application of spiritual knowledge will provide us with real prosperity.

Personal evolution is a continuous process of. transformation. It comprises a series of progressive steps or thresholds without end, for there is no ultimate realization of God/Consciousness. The potentials and vistas of consciousness are infinite. The purpose of life is the greater and greater embodiment of universal Truth. In each step along this path, brain and body become the increasingly refined vehicles for soulic expression. Evolutionary progress made by the spiritual practitioner, results in a raised vibration and receptive mind. Such inner conditions make us capable of channeling soulic Intent. Greater attunement with the soul then occurs more and more quickly. As our soul-mind-body alignment increases, we are given clearer and clearer guidance by the true self, with regard to how to best life a spiritual life. Through an increasing soul alignment, we also achieve a greater alignment with cosmic purpose. Intuitive insight dramatically improves, as does one s level of manifest intelligence and wisdom.

As the spiritual path proceeds, attunement with the soul becomes a complete identification of the personality with the true self. The ego is then absorbed by the soulic purpose. This is one of the attributes f Mastery. Consciousness itself then becomes the intentional basis for daily affairs. The arbitrariness of ego is exchanged for the natural, spiritual mind. Fear is replaced by love, belief by clarity, cultural "norms" by universal truth, and selfishness by group service. Truth becomes the pattern for right social action, when we identify ourselves as souls instead of job titles. In soulic alignment the whole of humanity and its welfare, (as part of the planetary group mind) is recognized as Self in oneness, rather than in separation.

Meditation is a primary key to this spiritually noteworthy attainment, which the soul knows well. It is only when we mistakenly believe in the arbitrary limitations of historical time, place and culture that we experience separation, warfare and misery.

The human-wrought planetary crisis of our age, like most self-induced problems, may be seen as a learning device for humanity. It is through trial and suffering that the ego cries out. It then demands emotionally reassuring answers, to the apparent dilemmas of life. From the viewpoint of the soul however, trial and suffering are sometimes the very best means through which lessons are learned. Through the pressure of circumstance, the significant steps to personal growth are most often taken, since crisis gets us in a "sufficiently serious" frame of mind. There is nothing wrong with taking truth and life very seriously. Life is not a game. It has specific purposes and parameters, (natural laws) that define all living things.

Unfortunately, we do not often cry out to that which is called God with earnest pleas, until the time of ultimate crisis strikes. For this reason the soul finds value in taking a physical life. The added limitations of physical existence, require extra attentiveness to lessons learned. These facts show us that the New Age concept of "unconditional love" is incomplete. Pain and fear can sometimes serve as equally effective teaching agents. Unconditional love is only spiritually effective when it is also accompanied by unconditional clarity. The clarity of the soul shows us that life and existence are not unconditional. On the contrary, life is very conditional. For this reason alone we do not have the luxury of acting blindly, even through love itself. The current state of the world should prove this to the inquiring mind without a doubt.

The trials and sufferings of the world, are increasingly providing the impetus for greater collective self-reflection. Environmental and international circumstances are forcing us to strongly reconsider old ways. Everyone can clearly see the need for definitive social change. The pressure we are exerting on ourselves through past errors of unnatural judgment, may now motivate spiritual revolution like no other force in previous centuries.

In the impending world crisis ahead, (which will no doubt be of unparalleled scope) the practitioner must recognize that adverse, often-painful experiences are excellent opportunities for growth. They will then make use of such experiences, be they pleasant, unpleasant or otherwise, and act accordingly. The steel that is not tempered by stress is left brittle. The plant that never feels the wind becomes spindly. These lessons of nature give us a spiritual pattern for success, so long as we view life from a spiritual perspective. This we must do without undue attachment to form or concept, or to nationality, belief system and culture.

The true merit of the "values" of modern society, (such as those seen in television commercials) speaks for itself. All of these forms are but smoke in the wind, whose ephemeral nature both cannot and will not withstand the next millennium, given their present direction. The supposedly sacred and unquestionable tenets of consumerism, will soon be revealed to all as sheer fraudulence. This is often horrible and incomprehensible to the inflexible ego. But it is a circumstance that offers what will likely be, the greatest gains in experiential wisdom for the soul in each of us, ever to be made available. Only Spirit and spiritual practice as a first priority in personal lifestyle, can fully sustain the practitioner in the times to come.

Evolution is about becoming more than previous forms. The soul knows of this universal purpose, and strives to fulfill it in each incarnation. Through alignment with the soul in daily affairs, the personality also aligns itself with the process of evolution. The desire to teach and aid spiritual progress in others, is one manifestation of the evolutionary urge. A soulic focus in life predictably results in a taking up of spiritual ministry, in one form or another. As the Teacher awakes, the true potentials of the Divine Human unfold. Truth is then catalyzed in others, who become teachers in their own right.

The practitioner realizes that living in accord with natural law, is the most effective way to live. Such a practice affords cooperation with all of Nature and humanity alike. Good deeds or the giving of money to charity alone, will not suffice to fulfill these soulic goals. Nor will the making of pleasant spiritual speeches alone, aid our planetary progression. As practitioners of natural law, we must be as "practical minded" as nature is. This means seeing things as they are and taking appropriate action. The tough and sometimes harsh lessons ahead, require teachers of spirit who are not afraid to convey equally tough lessons in straightforward terms. It is time to see and explain things as they are, without any sugar coating or unnecessary poetic license. This is why it is sometimes the most loving act of kindness one can extend to another, to simply tell them flatly where personal and collective faults can be corrected. Love is not just about flowers, but also thorns, in balance with one another. From a combination of honest clarity and love for its own spiritual sake, will we find the strength to re-shape the world in a sane fashion.

The mind/soul connection quickly becomes an unclouded conduit for the Divine. Through soulic and therefore Divine influence, we are clearly guided in what is now needed for our personal and collective evolution. Soulic perception and intuition must collectively rise among us, to check the conclusions of government, science, religion and society, insuring that they are the correct ones. When these institutions are (often) found to be in error, it is the wise who will not hesitate to publicly discard the values and conclusions they promote altogether, for the sake of truth. This is what is known as "social right action". Revolution, (change) enables evolution!

The phrase "to incarnate" simply refers to the act of a soul taking a physical body, through which it may function on the physical plane. The motivation for incarnating is the gaining of new insights, the refinement of previously learned lessons and a subsequent enhancement of personal mastery. As the overseer of life experiences, the soul provides the forming personality with those benefits and detriments most likely to induce the learning of needed lessons. Through the trials, joys and realizations of the personality in worldly affairs, the true self consequently draws strength and further refinement. This is particularly true when the personality consciously engages this true purpose of life, through spiritual practice.

Even such circumstances as deformity or pre-mature death, can provide very valuable experiences that promote soulic unfoldment. From this perspective the practitioner can also realize the deeper causes and meanings behind life events. Apparently tragic and fortunate circumstances alike, when viewed from a soulic perspective, take on comprehensible meaning. Upon realizing these universal facts, it becomes our privilege as fellow souls within the body of God, (Consciousness) to help each other spiritually advance. We all must travel this path toward increasing clarity, unity and self-mastery. Such objectives are a keystone to spiritual ministry, and successful international relations alike. When they are generally realized, love and wisdom will be the expected social norms, for an entirely new kind of human society.

When we incarnate as souls into physical bodies, this experience provides valuable insights. Only on the material plane are certain lessons made both painfully and joyfully clear. These include the ability to retain positivity, (of vibration and mind) regardless of circumstance, as well as steadfast spiritual perseverance. We learn the values of loyalty to cause, diplomacy in opposition, and sheer determination. Our lessons also include the ability to convert negative emotional/psychic Energy, (such as fear or pain) into more elevated states. Progressively enhanced, is the capacity to love for the sake of love itself, rather than as the result of sentimentality, circumstance or personal preference. Also significant is the ability to retain a purity of Intent, in accord with universal design.

[Note that the following is, (of course) not a complete list.]

Other valuable lessons for the evolution of soul, mind and body include:

1.The recognition of the oneness of all beings, places and things, (unified field).

2.The right use of thought, thoughtforms and mind, in progressive application, (tools of manifestation-creation).

3.The right use of emotional and psychic Energy, (particularly in the mastery of the chakras).

4) Greater facility in the manifestation of Intent, awareness and energy, both in self and in the environment, (the basis of manifestation-creation).

1.Understanding of the dynamics and subtleties of group mind phenomena, (particularly group spiritual focus).

2.Greater mastery of the physical, mental and psychic vehicles.

3.The enhanced ability to raise ones vibrational rate at will.

4.The enhanced ability to raise ones level of clarity at will.

5.The enhanced ability to align oneself with God, Nature, Soul and other sources of high spiritual intention, with fidelity.

6.The enhanced ability to expand or project useful states of consciousness to others.

7.The greater employment of truth and fact, which is focused upon spiritual progress as a first priority in life.

8.An understanding that Truth takes precedence above all else, regardless of circumstance or common opinion.

13) An understanding of progressiveness in all ways, particularly with regard to spiritual practice.

1.The value of providing an example of progressive action, based on good will.

2.The ability to "travel" to ever higher states of consciousness, with detachment and proficiency.

3.The recognition, application and embodiment of natural laws.

From such lessons as these does the soul, mind and body alike, draw strength. It is extremely useful to actually place ourselves in circumstances which will enhance the learning of this essential knowledge. In so doing we work directly for the Divine force of evolution, whether this is realized or not. In the case of individuals wherein ego remains the dominant influence in daily affairs, the fuller expression of human Divinity is never achieved. This is unfortunately the case with the majority of people today. When the ego remains attached to the artificiality of materialism, or other "paradigms of selfishness", it may well be that the best soulic lesson derived from that life will be, what not to do in future incarnations. This too has its value as a teaching device, following the principle of learning through mistakes made. The advantage of a life lived in earnest spiritual practice however, is a greatly accelerated rate of personal evolution.

What is not maintained by the soul after physical death, are the idiosyncrasies which tend to infest most ego-based minds. Individual preferences of an every day nature, as well as the majority of specific memories most of humanity still holds as dear as life, are basically irrelevant in the cosmic scope of things. This is why the soul discards them. When we discard that which is not necessary or progressive in our own lives, spiritual opportunities open wide to us. When this happens we can take our personal and collective evolution, to levels of being rarely dreamed of. Better still, we can take this journey TOGETHER.

Matthew Webb visionquest@eoni.com
The World Mind Society
http://www.eoni.com/~visionquest

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