Monday, 18 December 2017

How to do Christmas

19th December 2017   

                          HOW TO DO CHRISTMAS.

Christmas is undoubtedly the most stressful time for people.  Usually the stress is evident in people about a month before.  But this year it seemed to start around the beginning of October.  This led me to ponder on why there is so much stress at time which should be a time of joy and peace and goodwill as the many Christmas cards re-iterate.  I do not think that these are primarily religious concepts.  They are the core of psychological well being.  Without joy peace and a good attitude towards ourselves and others (a reasonable definition of goodwill) we are not going to be happy. 

Being happy is underrated. It is vital to well being, it is not a “trap” and it is available.  Happiness is a state of mind.  Everything is a mindset.  If you are not happy, change your mindset.  I am going to venture a working definition of happiness:  it means “keeping your head when all around you are losing theirs” (borrowed from If by Rudyard Kipling).  It means “steady she goes” (a sailing term) when the storms of life come, and they will come. It means being able to see the bigger picture and not get distracted by details.  I read this back in the 70’s somewhere:  “Don’t sweat the small stuff and it is all small stuff.)”  Whatever “it” is, will it matter in a week a month a year or in 5 minutes?  Happiness is the result of an inner security that allows us to keep steady in the face of life’s many and inevitable challenges.

So what about Christmas?  Why aren’t people happy at Christmas?  Two things come to mind:  money and family.  Money first. People often spend  too much money at Christmas.  They max out their credit cards.  They buy Christmas everything: napkins, toothpicks (red)

plates presents food - all expensive. But it is not the cost of the present that makes is important.  It is the thoughtfulness and appropriateness of the present.  If people only gauge the present by how much it cost, don’t give them anything.  The greatest gift we can give is ourselves.  This may be seen as a cliché but it is true nevertheless.  We can give time energy and attention.  In truth this is what people value the most from each other.  You don’t have to spend large amounts of money on the people who really care about you if you don’t have it to spend.  And don’t spend large amounts of money on people who don’t care about you because they still won’t care about you. As the Beatles said long ago: “Can’t buy me love….”

What about family?  The one thing that I notice which disturbs people the most about Christmas is that it will be a time of getting together with family members.  Some of these they do not want to be with.  It is unrealistic to expect that if you are going to spend time with people you don’t like and hardly see the rest of the year that you are going to enjoy their company.  And alcohol is a volatile drug.  It is a dis-inhibitor meaning it releases impulses (usually better not released) which when we are sober we may keep a lid on.  These impulses include sexuality (so watch those office Christmas parties; you will have to face all those people again after Christmas).  And even more so: aggression.  A family gathering where there will almost certainly be alcohol and where there are people who don’t really like each other,  drinking too much and eating too much and  confined together for many hours in the same place, is a recipe for trouble. 

So how can we maximise the chances of having a good time at Christmas?  One of the things I say to people is:  you create your own Christmas.  They now have these machines at a well-known fast food outlet where you can create your own burgers. (I haven’t mastered them yet!).  But it is the same with Christmas.  Do what you want to do and do it with the people you want to do it with and no one else. 
People use the word “have to” too loosely.  I like to say there are only 3 things we have to do: eat, breathe and as the Americans politely say “Use the bathroom”.  And if we decide to go on a hunger strike we don’t have to eat.  Everything else is a choice: a want not a need.  Yes, there are consequences to our choices, but we do have choices.  We make our own schedules and we create our own Christmas experiences.  If you are not happy with your Christmas routine – do something different.  One thing you can do is go away for Christmas! Take your family, stay at a nice resort!  This could be a marvellous way to spend Christmas.

Finally how do you get happy not just at Christmas but for the whole of the year.  I will write more on this another time. But a vital key is this:  Do more of what you are passionate about and less of what you hate.  Wishing you all a Christmas for 2017 like you have never had and always wanted.

Anna-Marie Taylor December 2017 Copyright                                                                                                                                                                                                    

Saturday, 16 December 2017

Proof is in the Pudding

I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ for it is the power of God unto salvation for everyone who believes....(Rom.1:16).  Stop!  Don't change the channel just yet!  There is gold in them thar hills.  Don't throw the baby out with the bath water.  Religion isn't spirituality.  Spirituality is true knowledge, religion is stuff people make up.  Mostly men as it happens.  No offence: it has been a result of the patriarchal skew which infected and still infects the world and doesn't in the end benefit anyone. I think gender may just be a mistake like ageing but that is for another day....

Apart from anything else the language above is 17th century English which no one speaks and most don't understand.  In contemporary terms what this is saying is something startling: :"I don't mind putting it out there:  I got the Power.  And I can give it to you if you want it."  Or more simply "the proof is in the pudding".  If the recipe is right the pudding tastes great.  If not it doesn't.  Very appropriate since we are approaching Christmas.  And you don't want to miss the next blog:  It is "How to do Christmas".  This is an article I wrote for a glossy Queensland resort magazine a couple of years ago. For a while they ran psychology articles as well as many advertisements for expensive Queensland properties.  Go figure.

The Gospel  (literal meaning good news) is this:  the power is there for anyone who knows about it and wants some.  And why wouldn't you?  Power to do what?  Succeed.  At what?  Everything you do.  Is this a code? Oh yes it so is.  Spirit is real; Truth works; lies corrupt.  Getting with the strength makes you strong.  Knowing what is true and applying it makes you effective.

 It is exactly like the laws of physics.  They were always there.  Laws of gravity and thrust applied just as much 10,000 years ago as they do today.  Problem was only the birds knew about them.  Though most indigenous people and many others knew about astral travel like Hindus, Buddhists and yes Christians.  Paul talks about astral travel and it is mentioned in regard to Phillip and by John, Ezekiel and many others.  They called it "being in the Spirit" sometimes travelling in the body and sometimes out of it.  The evangelist (which literally means good news carrier so not like CNN) Jesse Duplantis amongst many others talks of a bodily experience of going to heaven. Google it for yourself.  And the book and the movie Heaven is for Real is based on a true story about a 4 year old boy who visited heaven written by his father a minister.  I spent 6 months learning to astral travel. by getting out of my body.  After some freaky experiences like getting stuck at my feet and then not being able to move for half an hour I finally flipped out (or better rocked out since it is a rocking experience as well as a "rockin" experience) of my body on a sunny afternoon lying on the bed.  I had a marvellous time and it showed me beyond doubt that I was not my body.  I didn't ever feel I needed to do it again.  I have since learned even easier ways to travel.

Anyway back to the Wright brothers.  Eventually after running down hills in strange wooden contraptions they got off the ground.  The laws were there but no one knew about them and until the 20th century no one had the technology to build airplanes  And look at us now......Mars and beyond. 

Spiritual laws are just like the laws of physics were:  they are and have always been the same but most haven't known about them.  They work for anyone who knows about them and puts them to work.  So how do you know that something is true?  Firstly if your inner GPS is on you will feel it.  Secondly it works.  If you know the spiritual laws which are the equivalent to the laws of gravity and thrust and you have the technology you can fly  Religious laws doesn't work.  Spiritual laws do.  What I have called codes are spiritual laws: like 'what goes around comes around', like 'ask and you receive', like 'trusting your inner guidance'.  The proof is in the pudding. 

And to finish with the words of a contemporary prophet Paul Simon from the great song
Sounds of Silence Great version by Simon and Garfunkel.
And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon god they made
And the sign flashed out its warning
In the words that it was forming
And the sign said:
"The words of the prophet are
written on the subway walls
and tenement halls
and whispered in the sounds of silence"

It's all around us folks. 

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Unlocking all the codes at once

There is always an easy way and a hard way.  This is how I found the easy way.   I was walking back home on the beach track at Seaford with my beautiful German Shepherd friend Taj

It was about 2pm in the afternoon.  I had been raised Catholic by parents who were atheists, my grandfather was an orthodox Jew and my grandmother was just lovely and was not religious but was  Love in action. I was looking for God from the time I was about 8 years old.  I attended a convent for two years which continued to feed my awareness of a spiritual realm.  But it didn't seem like anyone around me really knew God so I knew  they couldn't help me.  I gave my heart to the Lord at a Billy Graham convention at 17 but  then I attended a local church .  There were 4 people sitting in the front pew asleep.  At the time they seemed very old to me.   The minister seemed to find his own sermon boring. I  knew this wasn't the Way.  I decided that Christianity was a crock and had nothing to offer me. So I wandered on many new age paths and for 10 years followed a group of American Sufis whose founder came from India.  I learned a great deal about the spiritual realm as a result of all these journeys and had marvellous experiences.  But  I still  couldn't reach God.  I had hit the glass ceiling.  I knew He/She/They and Beyond was there but I couldn't reach Him.  I refer to Him as Him because He is my Lover as well as my God. I was walking down the beach track that afternoon  I stopped. I knew in my spirit that there was someone standing behind me.  And more than that I knew it was Jesus.  He was about 6 foot tall  and had shining golden brown hair.  I couldn't see his features clearly because there was so much Light emanating from His whole being.  He was wearing a long white robe and I think He had sandals on. By that time spiritual experiences were common for me.  I didn't see Him with my physical eyes but I sensed Him and saw Him clearly with my inner eyes.  He was standing behind me and He said something which I didn't recognise at the time as the essential teaching of the Way.  He said Do you want me to come into your heart?  But I knew exactly what He was asking and I was ready. I said Yes from my deepest being.  I felt Him move into my spiritual aura and it was as if we merged but there was no sense of intrusion or crowding and I didn't stop feeling like me.  And I just continued walking home not really thinking any more about it.  I didn't know my life had changed forever and I didn't know until later that I had just experienced what Jesus called being born again, being born from above and being born of the Spirit (John 3:1-6).  I learned that language later.

To cut a long story short:  I started watching Christian television and could suddenly understand what they were talking about.  I started attending a local Pentecostal church The Lighthouse where I also learned a lot about the Way of the Spirit. It was also where I discovered Christian rock and as a child of the rock era this delighted my soul.  And I could dance and play the tambourine which also delighted my soul.  I believe music, dancing and song are essential to our well being.  We are all Singers and Dancers in our essential beings.   I ended up being ordained as a Minister of the Gospel in Crowley, Texas in the USA  in 2014 by Dr Jerry Savelle and am linked with the non -denominational Heritage of Faith Ministries.

Why did I tell you all that?  So you could go looking for God or Spirit (and Jesus says God is the Spirit  (John 4::24)).  Having had this experience no one can tell me Spirit isn't real because I know that I know that I have met Him as Jesus.  It is like trying to tell me my children aren't real.   I cannot pass this personal knowing on to anyone else.  But the Word also says Seek and you will find.  I sought and I found or more accurately I was found!  Because I was certainly wandering  (and wondering) and was certainly lost.  I was blind but then I saw.  Amazing Grace!  is a marvellous version by Celtic Woman,  complete with haunting bagpipes.

Spirit is real.  There is another realm which only our inner senses can see.  All spiritual paths in all cultures talk about this realm.  Our physicists tell us that the world is not at all as we see it but is a quantum flux of energy.  The fundamental basis of matter according to the latest understanding of quantum physics is not some teeny tiny particle but has the fundamental properties of sound:  amplitude and frequency.  No news to Hindu spirituality which has said this for 10,000 years.  In the beginning was the Word ....(Gen.1:1).   Even better the Spirit said to me a while ago:  Everything I say is a Song.    The fundamental nature of everything is a Song.  If there is a Song there is a  Singer. We need to look for the Singer.  Unless we encounter Spirit for ourselves it is just religion and the traditions of men.  Literally since denominational  religions are created and governed by men. There have always been and continue to be many marvellous men and women who know Spirit intimately and follow the Way within denominational religions.  However denominational religions are, and have always been, infected with warped attitudes to women, as well as to animals, to the natural world and to people who belong to another denomination or culture.    Denominational religion doesn't work.  True Spirituality does.  The Word says the traditions of men make Spirit's laws of no effect (Jesus in Mark 7:13).  Once we connect with the Spirit we have access to all the true codes and He is yearning to teach us.

So if you want to do it the easy way connect to Spirit.  It is so easy:  The Word is near you in your mouth and in your heart.  You don't have to go up to heaven to bring Him down or down to the darkest pit and bring Him up (Deuteronomy 30:14; Romans.10:8).  He is so close to us we miss Him.  We get confused with "the voices" in our heads.  Is it me?  Is it Him?  Is it the negative voices within and around us?  He sounds like us but says things we do not know.  Eventually we learn to recognise His Voice amongst the others like being able to tell the voice of your loved one in the midst of a crowd at a party.

Practically speaking if you want to connect to Spirit this is what you do.  It is simple.  All Truths are simple.  It is how Gloria Copeland another great teacher of the true Way did it.   You say Take my life and do something with it.  Out loud!  So heaven and earth can hear you.  It is that simple.  You also then say (out loud)  Give me Your Holy Spirit.  We then get our first Spiritual Power Booster Pack.  And there is more.......

There I am outed.  I am a dedicated Follower of the Way  The disciples called themselves followers of the Way. (Acts 22:4),  I join all those men and women in every place who have conversations with God - daily.  If this puts you off that is a pity.  As a wise person said to me: Christianity is not a religion it is a Way of Life.  In the last 13 years I have put it to the test.  It works.  Nothing else I have tried does and I have tried everything on offer.  I have wandered on many new age paths,  I have tried Sufism.  I have tasted most of what the world offers.   None of it worked.  This Way does: in regard to money, health ,relationships and everything else. There have been  many challenges over the last 13 years.  There were previously and will continue to be as long as I am on this side of Heaven.  Some of them have been very big.  But now I have Someone who guides me through them into victory over lack, sicknesses and challenges from people and  from life on this planet at this time.   I am just at the beginning.  We are always at the beginning of the Way.  But now I have a Way to follow.   I have Someone to follow Who brings me through every life storm every time into the clear sunshine, into joy and peace;  Someone Who sustains me through the challenges so I can "walk on the water through the storm".  Peter walked on the water! (Matthew 14:29).  We can too!  Though I have been given the gift of a rich and marvellous life, parts of it  seem like a bad dream.  I don't often look back. If you do you turn into a pillar of salt. This  Way is  the easy way.  It is the only Way I have found that works. May  you seek  for yourselves.  And if you do He will find you.

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Our Inner GPS

Some people call it "gut feel" some intuition some "inner prompting".  It is our inner GPS only it never makes a mistake and never takes you via the busiest route or the longest way to reach your destination.  Some people don't know they have an inner GPS and some don't know how to use it.  It is an important code:  trust your gut it is never wrong.  We are taught not to trust ourselves. This is the false code.   A large sample study by Bessel Van Der Kolk world -renowned traumatologist and researcher, is discussed published in his marvellous book about traumatology "The Body Keeps Score". He concludes that most children are developmentally traumatised.  That means most families don't function.  That is not rocket science.  We only have to look around us. 

If you grow up in a family that doesn't function right and most of us do according to this research, ,you will have been taught not to trust yourselves.  This is a false code.  It is further reinforced by being disconnected from our bodies and emotions through dissociation or "zoning".  Dissociation is one of the 4 stress responses governed by the hind brain also called the reptilian brain or early brain.  Dissociation allows us to "buffer" ourselves from our emotions and is a vital and effective survival response available to infants and animals.   If our first carer doesn't bond with us an infant we experience traumatically stressful emotions which can kill us as infants.  They can send us crazy as young children or so fragment us as adults that we cannot function as we want to.   Infants do not yet have the frontal lobe development required to regulate their emotions.  After the Berlin Wall came down there were babies in orphanages in Rumania who were apparently never touched and had been the horrors of the war who turned their face to the wall and died of a broken heart.  Others who could dissociate survived though they would be depressed and suffer from other psychological problems like anxiety as they grew. 

Dissociation seems to be a response generally available to animals but not to  all humans.  . According to Peter Levine in his book Healing Trauma animals in the wild don't get Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.  However in captivity they do.  Children growing up in dysfunctional families are essentially "in captivity".  If you  can dissociate  you will survive  but you will disconnect from your body where the emotions manifest and therefore also from your inner GPS.  The emotions continue to register and to be stored in your body.  They remain there until they are released.  Knowing how to do this is the essence of healing from trauma. As the person grows they either consciously or unconsciously remain terrified of their emotions.   Since dissociation is unconscious they  are unaware of having dissociated. They do not know how to ressociate. They remain "zoned" not present to themselves or grounded in their bodies and suffer accordingly.  People will say "I don't know who I am."; " I feel like there is a big hole inside where my self should be";" I feel like I am looking at life through a plate glass window".  So the inner guidance is not able to be utilised.  If people are aware of it they will ignore it.  They may  say I knew I shouldn't be getting married to this person as I walked down the aisle but I ignored it.  And my parents said you have to get married what will people think and the invitations have been done,  And there begins another long turbulent dysfunctional relationship with dissociated children perpetuating the problems in their lives. 
Bottom line Learn to listen to your inner promptings.  They are very close to you all the time.  Learn to act on them.  If you put them to the test you will find they are never wrong.  This is a true code. 

Saturday, 2 December 2017

The Power of Love

Hello to my fellow travellers and codebreakers wherever and whoever you are.  Talk to me.

 I was talking with the Spirit about Love the other morning.  I  felt an inner prompt (the next code to break) to look up the lyrics of "The Power of Love" by Huey Lewis and the News on Youtube,:  the background song to the sweet and quirky "Back to the Future" movies.  Talking about songs as background I came across a new series produced and hosted by Dwayne Johnson called "Soundtracks: the Songs that Defined History" which I haven't watched yet.  Dwayne Johnson apparently has a love a music (and a great voice) and a fascinating troubled and hugely successful life.  Seeing him as the Tooth Fairy is a delight for he is a wonderful comedian as well as beautiful to look at.

 The songs we love are  the soul singing to itself. They are mostly love songs to life.  They were the soundtrack of our lives.  There are many academic dissertations on football.  However I am not sure that the poetry and power in the music we love is truly appreciated except by the people who turned up to hear the  Oils at Hanging Rock and all the other people who have music in their lives.  I didn't go but I was dancing with a group of people to the Hornets (a wonderful Australian rock and blues band who are worth checking out) at the Community Hall of the small coastal town in which I live. That is the power of Love.

We have one word in English for love:  I love pizza I love my dog I love the Spirit.  Who by the way told me about 2 years ago to call Him Papa.  Spirit is both male and female (as our hormones tell us we all are) and neither. Spirit is not trans-gender Spirit is beyond gender.  Gender itself could be some sort of corruption in the gene pool.  I have impeccable feminist credentials having been there at the very first brave meeting of 50 women (only women!) at Mt Beauty in 1971.  However I am going to refer to Spirit as He. For  He is my Beloved.  Another wonderful song from the stage play Kismet comes to mind "For this is my Beloved", the lyrics of which are also worth checking out.
Apparently the Inuit people have 50 different words for snow.  Food for thought.
Bottom Line:  Love is the greatest power there is.  One of the great codes to break is:  What is Love really and how do you exercise it?  I am just a raw beginner in this area but there are some things I know Love is not.  It is not wussy Hallmark touchy feely love that doesn't come from the heart.  I know that as someone said the other day in regard to how they felt about loving their 6 year old "It is so easy".  I know if we have Love it flows. I know you can't fake it.  I know it not only makes the other person feel good but it makes us feel good.  When my small powerhouse Queensland Heeler rescue girl Grace Honey Taylor loves me she does so with her whole being.  Everything wriggles and moves and she strives to get as close as she can and show her delight in every way she can especially when we have our first hello in the morning. Above is Gracie when she first arrived.  She was found wondering  and wandering having been dumped and she was about 5 months old.  Love brought her to me.

I know that Love means you choose to please the one you love as much as you can as often as you can.  Love makes you feel warm inside.  Love covers a multitude of sins.  What that means is that you forgive and forgive and above all forget and forget.  If you haven't forgotten you haven't forgiven.  Love comes from the heart not the head.  Love means you never let go and never give up.  Love is not liking.  You can want to "smack someone upside the head" but still Love them.  Love and anger don't cancel out, they are not like sums.  Would love to hear your thoughts.

Love has to be practiced and we get better and better the more we practice.  You can "fake it till you make it".  You can act with love even when you don't feel loving or think loving thoughts.  This is not pretending:  this is how you crank the motor to get it started.  Because deep in us there is a source of Love that is endless.

Here is a song of the heart that best expresses what I know to this point:

An Ode to Love
He pours
He yields
He holds
He breathes

He shares
He takes
He draws
He makes
He sees
He hears
He knows
He gives
He walks
He talks
He laughs
He lives

He’s mine
I’m His
We are as One
Swaying together
Following the Sun.
The wind it can blow
The rain it can beat
But My Love holds me close
I can hear His heart beat.

He is My shelter
From every storm
He is My Beloved
Whose arms
Keep me warm

Never to leave
Never to grieve
Always and always
His love
I receive.

Codebreaking Introduction

Hello to all my fellow codebreakers.

A code breaker is someone who wants to work out how to do Life.  If you know the codes you win.  If you don't you lose.  It's not complicated but someone has to tell you.   I am going to share with you some of what I have learned about code-breaking and hopefully  you will share some of what you  have learned about code breaking.  Many heads are better than one.

I am going to talk about codes in important areas of life and I am going to start with something we all think about a lot: money. The true currency of life is ultimately not money it is attention. And whatever we put our attention on we merge with.  If we focus a lot on money we become obsessed with money and the more we chase it and hold on to it the more elusive it becomes and the more tired we become. One of the major codes we are taught about money is this:  if you want  money you go for it at any cost and hold onto it for dear life..  This is a false code and if you practice it it won't work and you don't win you lose  But the true code the one that works is this:  the more you give the more you get.  This is reflected in the natural  principle of sowing and reaping.  If the farmer sits on his or her porch with their bags of corn in the shed saying "I have this amazing amount of corn seeds in the shed - it is full to overflowing.  Look at my shed it is just bursting at the seams.  But there is nothing growing in my fields."  And you say: "Well, did you plant any seed?" and they go No.  If you don't put seed in the ground, meaning if you do not share and give (not only money but also money) as well as time energy attention information  you will get steadily more poor.  Howard Hughes, one of the wealthiest men in the world, lived on the top floor of a hotel which he owned, in Las Vegas, most of which he owned as well.  He had had an enormously successful life making movies and designing and flying planes: he was gifted, talented and handsome.  He had it all.  He died on the top floor of his hotel with a dislocated shoulder surrounded by people who were not  family or friends who only wanted to get their hands on his money.  He apparently hadn't left the hotel  for  many years.  He died in a distressed state.  He had all the money in the world and had nothing..

The bottom line is this:  the true code in regard to money is simple: Sow and you will reap.  Sow a seed of corn and it will grow a plant that has many more seeds of corn.  The same applies to money.  But also to any other thing we have to give: time, energy, attention, love, friendship, hope. And money.  It is a simple law of cause and effect also called karma and known commonly as "what goes around comes around".  We reap what we sow and don't reap if we don't sow.

Now the proviso is that we have to sow in good ground.  And to do that we have to consult our inner guidance, our inner GPS to work out where to sow. That same guidance will also tell us when and how much to sow.  But that is for another blog.....