Keep Me Writing! Thanks, Keith

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Centering in Spirit


According to the late and great Swami Sivananda of Rishikesh, India, the following chart above exemplifies the human experience and even the experience of other creatures and beings. For the most part, living beings identify themselves at the material level and all concepts of self revolve around material possessions and material powers and skills. However, Swami Sivananda says that there are three universes in which human beings live - the physical universe, the astral universe and the causal universe. The physical universe is what we can physically touch, like a rock or a tree or a car or a table. The astral universe is that of emotions. These too are temporal. Also, the causal universe is the universe of pure ideas. So, as you think, you are navigating the Causal Universe. However, says Swami Sivananda, the living being (e.g. the human being) is actually beyond all three of these universes - the human being is actually Spirit with three layers or coverings that must be shed. When you peel an orange, beneath the rough outer skin is the orange itself. Beneath the physical, astral, and causal bodies of the human being is the true self. This is what Sivananda calls Atman, or Individual Spirit. To understand this, you must meditate. The easiest meditation technique is called OM. This sound actually comes from three letters - "AUM" - each letter representing a universe. So, as you move from A to U to M in sound, you are actually taking a journey inward to your true self. You are letting go of your body, your emotions, and even your mind. You are experiencing being itself. This is the timeless and eternal aspect of life - pure being - attained by meditating on OM. On the flip side, one can also attain the experience of the true self through love and selfless giving. By caring about others unconditionally, one can also transcend material, emotional, and mental attachment. OM is the direct path to self-realization, enlightenment, freedom, and all that is experienced in True Being. The concept of True and Timeless Being is called God in Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, and Deism. The concept of True and Timeless Being is called Moksha among Yogis and Meditation Masters. The concept of True and Timeless Being is called Nirvana among Jains and Buddhists. OM and Amen. Namaste. 

Saturday, October 14, 2017

My Two Cents Regarding John 1:1


Dear Friends, Colleagues, and Blog Visitors:

For the most part, this URL (www.keithjohnson.us) is my spiritual blog.

All true spiritual masters like Jesus and Buddha have told us, many times in their teachings, that the purpose of human life is not just to make a boatload of money and party. Neither is human life to harm others. Rather, human life is here for the purpose of allowing us, as spiritual beings, to unite ourselves with our Divine Source.

As a raised Christian who has been blessed with teachings from the East, especially those of the Buddha, I no longer see the Bible Gospels in Absolute Terms. I consider the Bible to be the inspired Word of God as opposed to the literal Word of God. Today, there are thousands if not tens of thousands of translations and even mapping back ancient versions of the Bible to actual individuals and manuscripts is still a work in progress. So, I take all teachings with a grain of salt. Nonetheless, I pray, contemplate, and meditate on a regular basis and believe that what I am presenting here is a very unifying teaching.

You see, most of Christianity stands at odds with other religions and paths. Most Bible-only Christians say that paths like Buddhism and Hinduism are false pagan religions. Well, let me tell you something, I have been blessed by and helped by my many great people who are practicing Hindus and Buddhists and their love is as strong as any Christian I have ever met. So, theologically, how can one reconcile Eastern Thought with Christianity? 

Let's discuss the image I placed above  - herein rests my answer.

The Bible says in John 1:1 that the Word was with God and the Word was God. OK, fine. So, Jesus, being the Word of God is the Source of Creation and all Created Beings. However, Swami Sivananda of the Hindu path says that "OM is the Divine Word of God". So, how can this be reconciled?

Simple. Jesus commanded the Holy Spirit/Holy Ghost to create the universe and all living beings. This of course was based on the Mandate of God the Father. So, the path goes like this.

1. God the Father mandates Creation Through Jesus (Yeshua) - The Literal Word of God.
2. Jesus mandates Creation Through the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit) - The Spiritual Word of God.
3. The Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit) allows for Creation and Created Beings to manifest.

The blessed Kriya Yoga master Yogananda taught that "OM is the Audible Word of God". You can hear OM in the depth of silence. OM is the original form of the word Amen, which Jesus says is Himself in the Bible: I am the great Amen. With that said, because man has had many problems connecting with God, Jesus took it upon himself to tell humanity how to pray. He gave us the Lord's Prayer. So, in the Bible, there is a question, "Lord ... how shall we pray?" He answers with the Words of the Lord's Prayer, which, in my humble opinion, is a focused way of invoking the Presence of the Holy Spirit (OM). So:

1. The Lord's Prayer connects one absolutely with the Holy Spirit (OM, Amen).
2. The Holy Spirit (OM, Amen) is absolutely connected with God the Son (Jesus, Yeshua).
3. The Son (Jesus, Yeshua) is absolutely connected with God the Father (Abba).

Because all aspects of the Holy Trinity are absolutely connected, the Lord's Prayer connects one directly and absolutely with God in All Three Divine Forms - Father, Son, Holy Ghost. I sincerely believe that one who leads a life devoted to love, compassion, humility, hard work, and a life of virtue, and who prays either the Lord's Prayer or a form of OM, is a saved soul. We cannot do evil and then expect God to save us. Some Christians say that "I am a believer" and then use their faith as an escape from spiritual duty and a life of service and claim "I am saved through my faith".

I sincerely disagree with this belief system.

The Lord's Prayer is one's justified escape from the church because today the church is an economic wolf - a financial predator. You do not have to give ten percent of your earnings to a wealthy church or someone who claims to be a path to God.

Faith is free. God is free. Hope is free. Charity is free. Salvation is free. You are under no obligation to support megachurches where pastors go around living in million dollar homes and driving BMWs. That is a scam. That is false. There is accountability and such individuals will be held responsible.

The Lord's Prayer is one's direct line to our Divine Source.

There is no intermediary needed.

We are saved by Grace and the gift of Grace is from our Divine Source. We approach our Divine Source (God) through benevolent and sincere prayer - especially prayers using OM, Amen, and the Lord's Prayer. We further our faith and path by helping others in this life.

Then, and only then, can one reasonably expect that Divine Grace will reciprocate and in the end save. Thanks.


Saturday, October 7, 2017

The Blessed Sacred Syllable OM


Dear Blog Visitors, Friends, and Subscribers:

I am 52 now and since I have been about 10 years of age, I have been active on the spiritual path learning from many sources and seeing arguments and statements made from many different perspectives and angles. I have heard the best from Christian Ministers. I have heard the best from Jewish Rabbi. I have heard the best from Buddhist Monks. I have heard the best from Hindu Swamis and Rishis. I have also heard great teachings from secular and non-religious individuals whose quest for the truth of our existence caused me to stop in my tracks and listen carefully. Paramahansa Yogananda once said that the Purpose of Life is simply to connect/reconnect with our Divine Source, seek it out, and connect. If that was easy, we all would have done this a long time ago and the world would have no problems. There would be peace, healing, joy and more everywhere. But that is not the case. The world is plagued by disease, death, tragedy, chaos, ignorance, and corruption. Sure, the Sun shines and the Mountains stand tall. Sure, the Oceans are beautiful but deep in the water swim Great White Sharks. So, how does one reconcile all of these teachings and experiences?

For me, the answer finds its origins in Ancient Himalayan Literature called the Upanishads. This word means to sit next to the Enlightened Master. In fact you are so close that the truth overflows from the Master into you. So, by existential osmosis, you become Enlightened. In the Upanishads, there is a Sacred Sound Syllable called OM. It is the Sound of a Bell when struck. It is also the sound of Thunder, Rain, the Oceans, the movement of the Earth, and all sound. OM is the essence of all speech, language, and hence truth. The men who revealed in the Upanishads, according to legend, spent years in meditation to understand existence, God, and being. Their conclusion is that OM is the Sound and Name of our Divine Source (God, if you will) as well as the means to get there. This is said in the Bible "The Word was with God and the Word was God". Christians will say that Jesus is the Word of God, but I believe Jesus would affirm to you that He is OM. He also said in the Bible that "I am the Alpha and the Omega". OM is the essence of Omega. He also said "I am the Great Amen". Amen, according to Paramahansa Yogananda, is the Great Grandson of the ancient Sanskrit word OM. Amen comes from OM. OM is also the essence of words like Omniscient, Omnipotent, Omnipresent, and Omnibenevolent. OM therefore is the very essence of our Divine Source, the Original Divine Being and Presence. OM represents Truth in both form and formless ways.

Occam's Razor suggests that of all explanations, the simplest one is the truest one. I agree. One word summarizes our existence and all phenomena. That same word exemplifies our lives, our journey, and our Source. OM. OM is the end of duality and the embracing of unconditional unity and oneness.

"All this ... is OM" - Mandukya Upanishad. Amazing discovery, isn't this?

All The Best.

Keith Johnson

My Two Cents on "God"


Dear Blog Friends, Followers, and Visitors:

This post is my two cents on the topic of "God" especially in light of recent violence and tragedy across the world. I have searched my soul deeply and just this morning I got inspired to write this post. As some of you know, I follow an ancient Himalayan Spiritual Path called VEDANTA. This philosophy is that of non-dualism. It is about duality becoming and merging back into ONE. So, ONE is the true root and essence of two, which is where duality starts and all of the troubles of this world begin, philosophically.

The world today is literally trapped in dualism. There are contradictions all over the place. Some people are wealthy. Others are poor. Some people have great health, others are born with a critical and life threatening condition. Some creatures lead long lives. Others are killed by predators when they are young. Some people live in a wealthy and prosperous country, others live in great poverty like in countries in Central Africa where there is only starvation.

The human experience for each individual is also plagued by painful duality. There is happiness and sadness. There is gain and there is loss. There is health and there is sickness. There is security and there is violence from other creatures and even the Earth (hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes). Some people get schooled and have a good job. Some are without educational opportunity and then have to work hard menial and back breaking jobs the rest of their lives.

There also is duality is many religious and spiritual and socio-political texts. So, in the end, the issue of division is not solved. As soon as you follow one system, you are against the other. No wonder there has been so much historical violence "in the name of God". Well, in my humble opinion, the texts being followed are flawed because if the texts were existentially perfect, then following them would lead to a better and more secure world. But this is not the case. There is more danger now than ever before with all of the nuclear weapons and automatic weapons across the globe. The world has become a war zone. Peace is just a word, it seems.

Also, I cannot believe some of the crazy things written in the "holy books" of many religions. Those are the words of men and not the words of True Divinity.

God is BEING (Existential Nonduality), In My Book

So, the diagram I have created above shows, apart from any specific ideology or belief system, the essential nature of the human life experience. Has religion helped us? Only in a limited way. Has political enlightenment helped us? Only in a limited way. So, what is the existential solution to the troubles of life and existence and modern society?

It is this. BEING is the true heart and soul of every living creature and human being. BEING is where neutrality, peace, and natural joy resides. Happiness is not attained. It is like a car windshield that is dirty and that must be cleaned to see through it. BEING is what we all have in common. That is where the conversation must begin.

BEING.
Not religion.
Not politics.
Not social correctness.
Not language.
Not sports.
Not games.
Not finance.
Not business.
Not modern medicine.
Not technology.
BEING.

BEING...breathe in...breathe out....breathe in...breath out...

BEING is the essence of the meditation process.
BEING is the essence of the prayer process.
BEING is the essence of the creative process.
BEING is the essence of the healing process.
BEING is.

Many famous scientists have concluded that "we should not be here". This is a profound statement. In other words, it does not make sense, either through physics or mathematics, that we are "here" living this life. However, we are here. We are living this life.

Life indeed is a mystery.

BEING is "the mystery" for all of us to contemplate and because BEING is so immense, we should all be silenced and humbled by its greatness. It is a true miracle we are here and we are alive. It is a miracle to experience life and existence. It is a miracle TO BE.

Because of the miracle of BEING, we can partake of life and its experiences.

Awareness of this truth gets us back to the innocent mind of a child. Awareness of just being glad to be alive and be here is what allows for us to value one another and for peace to be a possibility. As soon as we align our minds with a limited dogma or belief system, duality sets in and all of the troubles of the world set in.

Honoring BEING is the solution - all human beings and living beings benefit.

It is our Source.
It is our Journey.
It is our Destination.

It is our common quality - across all domains of human life and across all life forms.

OM and Amen.

Keith