Awakening via Humor

Oxymoronic Humor

In the last blog we discussed sharp but foolish “oxymoronic” processes and now continue with the idea that humor is such a process that removes self-imposed limits, and so I’ll relate two personal experiences I had while living in Santa Barbara. At the beach I tested how far I could jump and then drew a line in the sand and jumped more than a foot farther. On one night I was a virgin—at a comedy club. I told my funny story but no one laughed. The next performer went on and on using every ‘dirty’ word and explicative deleted in the book and he brought the house down. What does this have to do with waking up?

Jokes and the Subconscious

Trapped within all of us are self-imposed limits. Did you know Freud wrote a book about jokes? In Jokes and their Relation to the Subconscious, Freud defines a joke as “a playful communication without moral implication whereby an image implanted in the audience’s mind is twisted with utmost brevity to reveal unforeseen consequences, thereby triggering an involuntary reaction”. He goes on to explain that it is even funnier if you can include the word “knob”.

Enlightenment Through Humor

The audience at the comedy club was releasing pent up taboos from mom and dad who scolded “no,” every time the kid touched, said, or did something unspeakable. We are all limited by our inculcation, our upbringing. Releasing limits can result in laughter or the ‘ah-hah’ experience. Sufis understand this and lead people to enlightenment through humor.

Horse walks into a bar. “No wheat!  Thanks. It’s my gluten intolerance.”

Horse walks into a bar. “My girlfriend is in love with a mare.”

Horse walks into a bar. Bartender says, “Why the long face?”

Wait, wait! I mean the Bartender says “Why the long knob?”


Sharp but Foolish

The Oxymoronic Process

In the last blog we said that opposed to discovering secret knowledge — truths come from processes. Examples from Taoism’s diamond body, the etheric chakra system of Yoga, and Christianity were discussed. Now, what we suffer from is being mechanically driven by habit. This is called sleeping.  The idea behind this blog is that we can wake up and create our reality. However, this presents a type of oxymoron. (oxy meaning sharp and moron—foolish) In other words, the question appears: how can one use a “process,” which implies being mechanical, to wake up from being a machine? This would have to be a very sharp process observing the subtlest mechanical movements of a person and correcting those machinations but itself not be so onerous to create a foolish marionette. Some groups believe this is possible.

Theta Ɵ

Scientology as explained by its founder, L. Ron Hubbard, is the science of knowing how to know. Know what? To know that each person is an eternal soul inhibiting a body. They call this a “Thetan”, and is expressed by the symbol Ɵ. Their process is quite deep, well thought out and systematic. It’s scientific in that it creates a hypothesis, tests and retests coming to a thesis that results in a synthesis. It is that people have an eternal form they don’t know about but through processing they can know it; by testing and retesting multiple cases the process verifies this, and finally as synthesis provides the steps by which anyone can verify this. Their process is basically understanding reality and becoming aware that you, as a soul or thetan Ɵ, can create any reality. It’s a remarkable process.

Jumping Up and Down as a Release

But it’s still a process and so it’s oxymoronic (sharp, serious but foolish). Thus the best known modern day representative, Tom Cruise, may act in serious movies like Live, Die, Repeat which have distinct metaphysical overtones, and he can also jump up and down on Oprah’s couch. Well, the Sufi’s understand that using mechanical processes have limits which are in fact quite humorous. So they use humor as a means of release.

In the next blog we discuss humor and limits. An easy example will be given so you can see how using limits can actually move you beyond self-imposed limits. Sounds oxymoronic . . . but it works.




Hidden Truths at Trail Heads

Hidden Truths Come From Processes

In the last blog it was said that there is no secret knowledge. In fact, if you’re near a major university library or in a large city, or on the Internet, you can find almost all there is to know. Not quite, because hidden truths are developed out of processes. A trail head tells you there is a path but it doesn’t usually tell you elevations, scenic views and so on. Often, what is important is not arriving. Making the hike is what counts. Similarly, what is being pointed to here in this blog is not the hidden truth of any division of self-help psychology or theology. Rather, these snippets are little trailheads demarking places to start.

  • Tao is mysticism which defines the Way and employs the device of creating an eternal diamond body using the breath to rotate sexual vitality around a water wheel up the back of the body, around the head, and down the front.
  • Kundalini Yoga is a means of returning, or reintegrating one’s self with cosmic unity and uses the breath to bring up the energy from the spinning wheel chakra at the base of the spine through the etheric chakras above the head.
  • Sufism is an organized body of knowledge which uses multiple devices coordinated with the times, the individual and circumstances to awaken a person to reality.
  • The 4th way is a type of Sufism that uses the device of “Self-remembering” to awaken the individual to reality.
  • Christianity is a belief system built on love and uses the device of locating God as an external force and placing that force within the individual.

A person might ask “Why should any device be needed?”

You Are Your Own Authority

To use a colloquialism (meaning co-local or familiar): in the Matrix Neo is offered a blue or red pill. This device breaks him free. For whatever reason, a matrix of habit, routine, and sleep has formed. There is no blue pill. The devices listed above aren’t secret either. They are trailheads of processes.  On a hike you can go alone, but often you do better with a friend who has hiked the trail. The role of a teacher needs be that of a friend  . . . but actually you don’t have to take a friend, or even hike on the trail. You can free climb. Be your own authority.

You create your life. You matter.


Is There Secret Knowledge?

Secret Knowledge vs. Hidden Truth

This is an interesting question which is a bit difficult upon which to expound. The answer depends on a person’s viewpoint. For instance, from the point of view of a lighter of lamps 500 years ago in the 17th century the electric lamp would appear to be the greatest secret. We have to be careful now. To believe that present day science has uncovered all the laws of nature distinctly limits what may be discovered. There is a lot more to come. In other words, to an outsider, what Maxwell, Faraday and Tesla discovered about electricity may seem like hidden secrets. Yet, to them they were hidden truths. Hidden secrets imply secret societies and covenants that only dribble out dibs and dabs of knowledge to select followers. Hidden truths are what a person uncovers through the process of discovery.

Knowledge is Material

G.I. Gurdjieff describes secrets saying everything in the world is material and limited, and knowledge is also material and also limited. Therefore, like butter on bread, if real knowledge is spread over a very wide area it becomes too thin for anyone to taste. There is no secret knowledge. Since knowledge is material it can’t be for everyone. Rather, it is  only for those who are able to hike the path necessary to acquire it.

Truth Comes from Process

This path is the process of personal discovery. And the people who aren’t interested in this path will believe that knowledge is being purposefully withheld, that it’s secret. They will go on believing “It’s all Greek to me,” and besides I can’t miss that repeat of Charlie Sheen in Two and a Half Men and tonight–Football!

In the next blog the path to “Hidden Truths” will be discussed and an attempt will be made to establish trailheads which begin one’s process of self discovery.

Devices to Awaken

The Device

In a movie Brad Pitt and George Clooney are nuclear scientists. About ten minutes into the movie Brad Pitt’s son wins the high school science project with a proton decelerated. At work Pitt and Clooney discover the world is going to implode in ten hours. At the end the device that saves them is the proton decelerator. All movies have devices. Sometimes, like this movie they are physical objects. Sometimes they are emotional where love saves or binds. And sometimes mental, for instance, a detective movie or a movie like The Sixth Sense which depends on your cognition of the plot.

Awaken from Mechanical Routine

Devices to awaken people from their mechanical routines are similar. Some are physical. The master whops his stick on the disciple’s noggin. Some are emotional, as in prayer by identifying with love, compassion, and forgiveness—by opening the heart to your savior, Jesus or Buddha or God—you  obtain those qualities. Some are mental. What are mental devices?

Thought Experiments

The time track of philosophy goes back before the Greeks and uses a special device called a “thought experiment.” Early philosophers such as Xenophane developed the thought experiment that if a stone fence existed at the end of the universe and you could shoot an arrow over that wall, then the universe was infinite.


Also thought experiments appear in the context of science. In fact, Einstein sitting in his office as a clerk daydreaming developed the concept of relativity by the thought experiment that changes in light were time. He did this by the thought experiment that by moving faster and faster on a train away from a light source—this created a relative condition.

Is there a thought experiment which would awaken those who engaged in it? There are many. Here’s one:

Wake Up.

You are in a dark hallway. You can touch the walls and feel a texture and the rug gives way a bit under the weight of your feet. Yet, it’s very dark until you see light at the end from a skylight. As you look up through the glass you see dark clouds. Right then . . . the clouds part and sunlight streams into your mind.

In the next blog we discuss hidden truths.

Exercises to Wake Up.

How We Become Robots.

This first exercise shows how we fall asleep and become robots. Stick your hand out in front of you as in the illustration. Now, turn it over. You will notice that your hand and fingers retain the same cupped shape. This is a learned response. A baby’s hand and fingers won’t do this; their fingers will straighten out.

picture of hand palm up.

As we grow and learn to live in our world, we survive by shaping ourselves through habit. An old Chinese aphorism (terse statement of truth) says it best: “Habits are cobwebs at first, chains at last.” These chains run deep into sight, hearing, and all the senses so that as we reach majority we repeat the same day after day, essentially becoming a robot. This is being asleep.

In this second exercise you can gain an understanding of being asleep. It’s very simple. Today, every time you walk through a doorway, say your front door, or the bathroom door, stop and take notice of where you are. Stop in the doorway for just an instant. Easiest thing in the world, you say. I’ll do it every time today in a second. If you attempt this you’ll discover somewhere around 4th time you go through a doorway you have forgotten to stop. There is a trick here. Remember, entering a room means going through a doorway twice. You’ll eventually leave the room. Here, you’ll stop and notice the doorway. Sometime today you’ll stop outside a doorway and realize something.

The third exercise in comparison to the two above will be more difficult for some. The next time you are in the mall, or a busy store, or you could do this outside anywhere though it works a lot better around a group of people who don’t know you—here’s what you do: Stand up, stick up your hand as if motioning to someone, then call out your name. “Hey (your name) come back!” If you’re in a place where no one knows you, no one will care one bit. How to they know you’re not just calling a friend? You may discover a new flavor of experience by doing this. You may get a taste of what is “waking up”.

In the next blog we discuss what is a device and how to use a device to awaken.


Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas.

(this blog was published earlier)

Epistemology is defined in Wikipedia as (ἐπιστήμη, episteme-knowledge, understanding; λόγος, logos-study of) is the branch of philosophy concerned with the nature and scope of knowledge and is also referred to as “the theory of knowledge”.

Epistemology sounds “high falutin”

As a word “epistemology” is quite revealing. “Epi” means on, at, or near as in the word “epi-center” of the earth. “Stem” is a familiar word. The “stem” of a plant comes up from the root and n off into leaves. “Ology” everyone knows as in bi-ology and psych-ology means the study of. So “epistemology” though it sounds high-falutin to be called the theory of knowledge is actually the study of branches, roots and specifically stems—word stems.

Man’s Ability to Imagine

Since Christmas is right around the corner, and we’ve been investigating the New Testament as a book to reach higher consciousness, I thought we’d look at the idea of the Gifts of the Magi from a literal standpoint and see if we could figure it out. That is, I wanted to investigate it from a figurative standpoint using the idea, previously discussed in my blogs, that Jesus represents imagination. . . Not that He was imaginary, but that the mind of God in man is man’s ability to imagine.

The stems of words here are important because three Magi is the plural term of three magus, and a magus is defined as a magician. What does a magician do? He images. He creates images in his mind and brings them into reality. Let’s look at the gifts of the Magi: Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh.

  •    The inherent property of gold is not its monetary worth. Monetary worth is arbitrarily assigned by man. The inherent property of gold is that it can be polished so that it shines beautifully.
  •      Frankincense, also called olibanum, is an aromatic resin used in incense and perfumes, obtained from trees of the genus Boswellia. But let’s look at the stems of the word. Frank means sincere. Incense, of course, is a substance burned in perfumed offering. But also wikipedia defines the word “incensed” as from the Latin “incendere”, meaning “to set on fire”.
  •       Myrrh is distilled from the Myrrha tree as a type of perfume. The word originates from the Arabic (mur) and as a perfume has a rich, smoky, balsamic aroma that is purifying, restorative, revitalizing, and uplifting. Further research reveal the Greek term μύρον (mýron) means anointing.
picture of Myrhh tree

Myrrh tree

So the three magicians, the magi, bring Jesus the gift of glowing or shining, the gift of being able to sincerely set fire to the world, and the gift of being able to use the perfume of love which anoints. But how does this relate to one’s imagination?

The gifts of the Magi are the gifts of imagination, the promise of imagination. You may polish your imagination until it shines. You may set fire to the world. You may anoint with love. It begins in you by out-picturing the world in which you want to live. The gifts of the magi are gifts of magic, of changing your world through imagination.

Tomorrow we’ll discuss actual exercises to awaken.

What is Waking Up?

Examples to understand what is “waking up”.

First, you are driving home from school or work or visiting and your mind is racing around thinking about what you’re going to do on the weekend. Your hood goes streaking bye and you turn down your street and park in front of your crib then all of a sudden you think “How did I get here?” The last 20 minutes of driving has been on auto-pilot. You can’t remember anything about the trip, driving the car, or in fact how you got home. It’s all a blank. This is sleeping. This is a comparison. “Waking up” is analogous to this, meaning there is a higher state of awake-ness above your normal state.

The Fog of Normal Life

Here’s another example that personally happened to this author. For quite a few years I lived in Santa Barbara. One spring day the sun was shining, the day was warm, but the beach was socked in with fog. The sand kind of crunched under my feet as I walked through the thick fog. Suddenly the fog parted and I was in the middle of a bright stretch of sand. As I walked into the sun light, on the other side of the opening a beautiful girl walked out of the fog. Silently we walked toward each other, clasp hands and twirled around a few times and then each of us walked in the direction we were going back into the fog.

Stack Moments

“Waking up,” is stacking similar moments like these until you appreciate the normal life you’re leading is particularly foggy and that there is a reality outside of you that is in a complete state of fecundating. “Fecundating” means to make fruitful or prolific. In other words, the universe or God is self-replicating, alive and always creating itself anew. One comes to understand that everything around them is in motion. Protons and electrons rotate around neutrons. The planets rotate around the sun. The solar system is moving in the galaxy. Sunlight shines. Heart’s beat. Blood pulses. Everything is alive. It is only when we’re sleeping, when we’re not awake, that we’re bored, view life as stagnant, or get so caught up in ourselves we can’t see the forest is made of living trees. That is, that we live in a fecundating universe.

“Waking up,” is breaking out of habits and routines and opening to new impressions. Several simple exercises to wake up will be explained in the next blog.


The Work

People Have Fallen Asleep

The “work” is a body of knowledge which exists outside the normal everyday routine. It isn’t being taught at school and you won’t find it at the University. It won’t help you get ahead in life or be a successful celebrity or have a shining personality. It exists because some people in ancient times realized that the masses of humanity, us as people, had fallen asleep in themselves. You can find this knowledge if you selectively read Sufi literature. Hazrat Inyat Khan discusses it. It can be found in Krishnamurti and is delineated as the 4th Way by Gurdjieff, Ouspensky, and also in the Commentaries by Nicoll. The higher forms of Yoga, such as Raja (King’s Yoga), are similar.

The Great Work

Previously to the last century it was called the Magnum Opus, which means Great Work. It has existed down through the ages in different forms. The “work” has always by tradition been spread word of mouth from master to disciple For instance, in early Egypt the Priest would initiate disciples into the “work” mysteries by certain ceremony.

This is not secret knowledge.

It actually is available to anyone. However, the forces which keep a person in the sleeping state, are inherent in every culture and society. The roll of the family unit is to inculcate their children to grow up to be good citizens. And as it takes a considerable amount of energy to break out of these forms, most people simply stay asleep and live and die without understanding themselves much less coming close to knowing reality.

What is sleeping?

Here’s a good metaphor. If you have a drawer, or a closet, garage or storage shed full of old stuff from who knows who and when, and you start to sort any of these spaces you’ll be tempted to look at the mementos over and over and have some difficulty sorting them out. You may never get it done and push it back. “Oh well,” that’s life you’ll say. “Let my kids, the next person, or whomever—let them sort it out.”

The “work” is to sort out your space. The space is your mind, which is considerably deeper, bigger, and disordered no matter who you are or how old you are. And everyone else, your family and friends, work and boss are like this too. The ilk and ill of every society is indecision. People can’t make up their minds. This stems from the internal disorganization of being attached to mental states like they were mementos in a drawer.

Wake Up or Sweet Dreams

When your psychology is organized there is the possibility of waking up. When you actually wake up you realize the person who constructed the mess you’re calling life is an unknown someone who goes by the same name as you. Until then . . .  sweet dreams.

In the next blog we give a specific example of what is being awake.

The “Work” of Christ Consciousness

The Enlightened Mind

We’ve been using the paradigm (pattern) in which Neville Goddard describes the 12 disciples of Jesus as disciplines of an enlightened mind. The 12 disciplines might be encapsulated as Hearing, Courage, Righteousness, Beloved-ness, Waking up, Awakened imagination, Doubt, Desire, Discernment, Praise, Abundance, and Rebirth (dying to the old).

Christ Consciousness

To discipline means to get under control. Once these interior qualities of the personality are brought under control, one’s outside reality begins to change. The purity of what you are inside is reflected in your outside circumstances. This is the “I am,” force within. This is Christ consciousness that only practice makes perfect, but the end result which is a new you and heaven on your earth is certainly worth the effort.

“And when He had called unto Him His twelve disciples, He gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.” – Matt. 10:1

The Work

Now these “unclean spirits” are within you until you take control of them. You can do this by calling the disciplines into you and abiding by them. But this takes effort. It takes “work.”

Yet, as we are, born into a mechanical reactive world, living lives that repeat and repeat until we learn the lessons of the disciples—we’re not perfect—so we need to discipline these qualities. This is what is known as “The Work.”

In the next blog we will discuss the idea of what is “sleeping” and how to wake up to a new reality.