If I had to sum up the 2010 film Inception in just one sentence, I would write: Fascinating lucid dreaming facts sadly mixed up in James Bond-like crap. Nevertheless, I’ve seen the movie twice, because it’s about lucid dreaming and because it’s a pleasure to watch Leonardo DiCaprio who has never, in my fervent opinion, looked or acted better. Perhaps because a person who is fully conscious of his subconscious, because a person who strives to exercise elegant self control both awake and asleep, because a person who understands there are no limits to the creative powers of the mind is, for me, the definition of a truly sexy human being.
I had been having spontaneous lucid dreams for years—which I termed Flying Dreams because once I realized I was dreaming I immediately took off—but it wasn’t until I read (thanks to amazon.com informing me that if I liked this kindle book I might also like these other kindle books) Lucid Dreaming: Gateway to the Inner Self by Robert Waggoner that I understood lucid dreaming was the spiritual path I’d been searching, hungering for. It’s a path that remains uniquely my own even though it’s also brought me under the stimulating wing of a growing community, a movement really, a profound drive to expand the borders of consciousness and, ideally, transform any and all painfully limiting sociocultural perceptions and structures. The Lucid Dream Exchange
After Merlin, my beloved doggie of 13 years, 3 months and 7 days, passed away, I fell into a deep depression; all I wanted to do was sleep. I was still in bed at 10:30 one morning (unheard of for me even on weekends) when my mother called me and determinedly read me selections from an essay by the Spanish philosopher Miguel de Unamuno she had translated into Spanish years ago. It’s an interesting story… My Mami, being fluent in several languages (including and especially Spanish and Italian) discovered an article in Italian written by Unamuno at the request of Giovanni Boine, the young editor of a then highly prestigeous magazine of philosophy and literature in Milan. Giovanni translated the article into Italian and published it. Unfortunately he died a few years later and the original Spanish version was lost, until my mother read it in an Italian publication, translated it into Spanish and returned it to Unamuno’s home country by way of its being printed in 2009, nearly a century later, in Quadernos del Matemático. The essay is entitled De la desperacion religiosa moderna (Concerning Modern Religious Desperation). Unamuno’s words penetrated to the heart of my depression and helped return me to myself. The following excerpt is taken directly from my journal entry of October 8, 2009:
Essentially, Unamuno says there are 4 possible ways to deal with the human condition, life and death:
Not to believe in anything (atheists, etc.)
To be sure of everything (religious fanatics, childishly idealistic New Agers, etc.)
Denial / Not Caring (don’t want to think about it, rather take an anti-depressant, keep busy, etc.)
Faith in what your heart tells you (the soul, life eternal, God, cannot be proved but I BELIEVE)
He cites the example of a doe surrounded by her children and other family members running through a forest away from the dogs and men hunting her. She knows that, eventually, she and all those around her will die, one way or the other, but she does not despair and at one point she stops and turns back and stares down her pursuers with the courage of a lion. That’s what the human heart does in the face of (seemingly) impossible odds. I knew this already, “the intelligence of the heart” is what the ancient Egyptians strove to live by, but Merlin’s death really put it to the test. I hit the abyss last night but the light shone into my heart again this morning. I love more than I can ever express.
My mother sent me the complete essay and after that I hungrily devoured Unamuno’s classic, Tragic Sense of Life. Certain books (people) are life changing in the sense that they help you define what deep down you already know but don’t yet have the words for, then suddenly you feel like you’re just one member of a team running a mysterious relay race and you’ve been straining at your starting point, aching to run toward the goal and suddenly, at last, someone hands you the ball and off you go, flying inside, transported by the soul’s haunting adrenalin, which somehow leaves no room for doubt in the heart that life’s finish line, eternity, is the spirit of the game. This particular book / ball I am now tossing toward everyone I possibly can by way of my blog for I feel it is one of the great contributions to humanity. Tragic Sense of Life by Miguel de Unamuno
The Biology of Belief by Bruce H. Lipton, Ph.D
This book is so important, words fail me. I can only quote from it: “It is just a matter of temporarily suspending the archaic beliefs you have acquired from the scientific and media establishments so that you can consider the exciting new awareness offered by leading-edge science… I truly believe that only when Spirit and Science are reunited will we be afforded the means to create a better world.”
Buddha said: “What you think you become.” Dr. Lipton offers us biological evidence this statement is not, pun intended, wishful thinking. A book to literally transform your life.
I will attempt to sum Biocentrism up with a verse:
Heaven curves in irises
branches are nerve ends
clouds liquid whites
earth a form of consciousness
time is forever a present
And now a brief quote from the book: “No dead universe ever existed outside of Mind. ‘Nothingness’ is a meaningless concept… The universe is simply the complete spatio-temporal logic of the self.” The ancient Egyptians (and other enlightened cultures) understood this. Metaphorically speaking, Biocentrism is another key foundation stone in the growing temple of Spiritual Science. Profoundly thought provoking and entertaining as well. What more can you ask of a book?
“Evidence of the Afterlife” presents evidence of an afterlife and shares firsthand accounts of those people who have died and lived to tell about it. Through their work at the Near Death Experience Research Foundation, radiation oncologist Jeffrey Long and his wife Jody have gathered thousands of accounts of near death experiences (NDE) from all over the world.” Buy from Amazon
I happened to be reading this book when my best friend passed away. My grief did not lessen in intensity, but at least it was free of despair, which has its roots in the fear, the dread, that the soul I loved so much had simply vanished forever. I’ve always known in my heart that consciousness, the spirit (whatever you want to call it) creates physical vehicles, that it’s not the other way around, and reading this book felt like finally breathing fresh, unpolluted air after decades of emotionally absorbing cynical fumes, such as, “NDE’s are illusions created by the last synaptic firings of a dying brain”. All such rationally lazy explanations are here dealt with in a thoroughly scientific fashion and exposed as dismissive simplifications that do not address all the actual, overwhelming, evidence. Reading this book feels like drinking an elixir of perfect health–my heart has seldom felt as warm and vibrant as it did during those days after my friend’s death as I lay on my couch with my Kindle, basking in the evidence science is finally providing for what anyone who loves knows has to be true.
To simply say that Joan Grant is my favorite writer does not begin to cover how I feel about her work, both her “fiction” and her non-fiction. Speaking From the Heart: Ethics, Reincarnation and What it Means to be Human Amazon’s Joan Grant Page
Seth Speaks – The Eternal Validity of the Soul “by” Jane Roberts I first read Seth Speaks years ago commuting to and from work in Boston. It’s the only book that ever made me miss my stop! The blurb on the back of my new copy reads… “an essential guide to conscious living. It clearly and powerfully articulates the furthest reaches of human potential… one of the most dynamic and brilliant maps of inner reality and human potential available today.” Yep, all that and much more.
For years I would try a work out DVD here and there and invariably put them away after only two or three attempts to get into them. I could follow some, others were impossible to keep up with or filmed in a confusing fashion, a few were pretty good but left me feeling merely sore for days and, in the end, I had no desire to spend weeks, months and much less years of my life with the various instructors. Everything changed when a snow storm forced me into a bookstore where I discovered Yolanda’s first DVD, Simply Yoga. I’ve never looked back.
I now have a wonderful yoga instructor who I invite into my home through my DVD player 3 to 4 times a week and the changes in my body, my temperament, my energy level and, yes, my sex life, are incredible. I’ve been exercising regularly for nearly twenty years (since I was 29 years old) but only now does my body finally feel it’s come into its own. Cardio, strengthening, stretching, centering… I’d heard a lot about the benefits of yoga but never found the right instructor. Now I own all three of Yolanda’s DVDs and each one compliments the other one perfectly. I love them all but Yoga 2 Easy is my favorite because it flows from posture to posture without a break and really gets my heart rate going even as the relaxed yet steady pace centers and soothes me, making it a truly mind-body-spirit experience.
I had been struggling with symptoms of pre-menopause, hot flashes, diminished libido, the depressing idea that my body would never look as good as it used to, etc. After less than one year practicing yoga 3-4 times a week with Yolanda’s superlavtive DVDs, the hot flashes are occasional and mild, my body is stronger, more toned yet also curvaceous, and feels more desirable and sensual than ever.
I highly recommend Yoga 2 Easy as well as Yolanda’s first two DVD’s, Simply Yoga and Yoga Easy. Her quiet yet precise instructions over the subtle background breathing track that accompanies and centers your own breaths through each posture, the setting, with its lovely colors and subliminal sense of running water, the sky-blue suit Yolanda wears that is both pleasing to look at and outlines each motion distinctly so you can see it clearly and more easily follow it, everything about the production is flawless and truly effective. Yoga Easy Yoga 2 Easy