How a Non-Deist Dances (or does the dishes) with God

When I was in the sixth grade, I saw an angel. At least, that’s what I called it. It was in the sky, it was alive, and not a bird or a plane or Superman. Not even a super-something else. It just was. And pretty as it just was. I told my mother who commemorated the experience with a poor concrete facsimile that confused me to no end. Because that wasn’t it and it wasn’t quite right in my adolescent mind. I don’t know if I ever thought again of that beautiful being I saw until we were reintroduced to each other in August 2015.

I never did see God, though. As an atheist it made complete sense. Out of mind, out of sight.

Until. Until one day in the spring of 2007 while I was washing dishes, I felt it. IT. The thing that other folks have described as God. This coalescing of something bigger than me but not definable, fully there and not-exactly-finite at the same time. Big, but fitting into the kitchen with me. I put down the salmon pan, walked to my then-husband in the living room, said out loud, “I just met God”, and walked back to the sink. Because, apparently God and other invisibles don’t do dishes. No other word was said. None needed to be. It was neither disturbing nor interesting. I didn’t ask any questions because none needed asking. I didn’t tell anyone else until years later.

I also didn’t tell anyone when God came back. I mean, what or who else could that big, infinite, yet finite beingness at the kitchen sink–again–possibly be?  This time, again while my hands were in the suds, it said one thing: “How will you define yourself?” That’s it. No winning lottery numbers. No “Here, I’ll dry”. Just “How will you define yourself?”

Neither of these experiences were met with a response more than nonplussed curiosity. Nothing more than a measured, ‘huh’. Although at one point in my non-religious evolution I was taught that God was fearsome and to be feared, I didn’t believe he existed at all, especially in that way. In fact, I never believed in him as his existence was explained by anyone. Except when that it-that-can-be-nothing-else arrived, I knew. Just knew.

In that moment, I just knew that fear was unnecessary, that worship was unnecessary, reverence was unnecessary, and there was no room for confusion or revelation. It just was. Not from ‘above’ but not from within. Not from somewhere ‘else’ but certainly something else, something other than my mind’s capacity for imaginings or desire for a holy dishwashing experience. In fact, there was nothing particularly holy in the whole thing. The clouds didn’t part, angels didn’t sing and I didn’t zing with the energies I often feel while with things of the ecstatic nature. I didn’t drop to my knees as I’ve done in grief and gratitude; I just heard him. There was no reassurance, demand for obedience or plea for belief; just one simple question.

While I was as unconfused and unawed as the first encounter, the second annoyed me. I knew the who of it and the what of if but, A) I still had to dry the dishes and, B) I’ve got other shit going on so what the hell kind of question is that for God to ask someone like me?

I had no idea then that the me I was would shortly no longer be. I had no context for the question and no understanding that there was anything beyond a definition of “I’m just Ingrid.”

Ten years into thisness, I’m well into not-just-Ingrid and I still don’t know how to define myself. And, I still don’t define that God-thing the way others do.  I thought if I’d define myself in my own way or the way I’ve been asked to the last year by those ones of Creation that got me into this mess, I’d know how to be this whatever-I-am. Notsomuch. God hasn’t come back to ‘splain all that, either. Or help with the dishes.

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I Have Become-A Mystic’s Realization of Self

I’m asked with some frequency if I believe in reincarnation, past lives, life after death, the afterlife, Heaven, and such.  Invariably, my answer goes a little something like this:  “There are, at the very minimum around seven billion expressions of life  (7, 122, 966, 300 by today’s population clock at 8:05EST) that flux and flow between breaths.  It seems to be there would be that many experiences of death and post-death.  Although there may be some similarities, they are each unique.  Who am I to believe or not believe any one of them?  Others experiences don’t require me to believe them, only respect them.”

Over course of the past year and a half, on these pages, I have alluded to significant energetic integrative experiences but was intentionally vague about making particular identifications.  However, seeing as how I appear to be about a year and a half late to this party I signed up for, it’s time.  I can no longer ignore the push and pull, consistent messages, visions and experiences that have been leading to me to this place today.  The resistance I have felt for so long–that opposing force against the push and pull–was grounded in a distinct layering of fear that no longer serves me or the rest of the world.  A few days ago, while with a new client, I was given a gentle reminder that the time is now.  Today, I don’t feel a push, pull, or other nagging force (the invisible can be that way sometimes).  Today, I’m just walking through the door that has been held open for me the entire time.

If you haven’t kept up with the magical happenings of my world, it may be helpful for you to read the following posts for a little bit of background: Revealing, revolution and becoming everybody, An UnCommon Experience, On Fear and Stepping Up and On Integration and Becoming.  I’m referencing them here but details are provided there.

On October 30, 2011, I drove from Rappahannock County to Reston, VA, for a session with an amazing woman.  The session began as usual but quickly morphed into something more–where it became clear that the session was both for her and me.  As the focus transitioned from her to us, three distinct energies became evident as I was in the midst of what I call an ‘energetic crack-up’.  It is a very distinct physical sensation combined with a visual of the body literally cracking apart in a slow-motion explosion of internal light bursting forth.  As I was in the experience, the client asked me if I knew who had joined us.  I replied, “No” in as much as one can while sobbing.  As a prior student of at least one of these former beings, she identified them as: Paramahansa Yogananda,  Sai Ba and Babaji.   As she identified them, they each merged into me.

On February 7, 2012, I went for an hour massage.  I left three hours later without a massage.  What occurred was another integration with a myriad of energies.  Here is an excerpt from On Integration and Becoming that will paint the picture:

“the room just ‘opened’ and filled with the most nearly-indescribable, amazing energies–100s of them and several ‘key’ ones that although didn’t speak to me were clearly identified instantaneously.

In that moment or however long it was, I ‘knew’ with striking clarity that what was with me was the presence & essence of each who has walked this path before me.  Again, although nothing was spoken, there was a clear message of who I am and what I’m to do.  Nothing needed to be said because I already knew…

I don’t know how long the energetic experience my massage therapist and I shared lasted.  As I laid naked on a massage table, heart open, open eyes crying, breathing in a rhythm shared with the multitudes around me, each of them joined me in a way that cannot be put into words. The peace, strength, power, grace, compassion, ferocity, sublime serenity, and knowing merged.  Into One.  One who has work to do.  One who now knows beyond any shadow of doubt that she is not alone.  Over and over and over and over with increasing intensity and an unmistakable insistence “iamiamiamimaimaiamiamiamnownownownownownownownownowiamnowiamnowiamNOW’ came through me. And in that merging, I emerged as one…

I am one of a handful of people who show up every now and again all over the world who have a job to inspire, lead, heal, change, stir the complacency shit-pot, share, love, piss-off, push, encourage, & connect in service to others.  This time I go by the name of Ingrid.”

During the experience, quite a few of the energies were identifiable by face and feel.  Many were not, moving into me as anonymously as the lived.  They were male and female, they spanned the spectrum of ethnicity, race & religion.  There are only two, though, that have remained in distinct memory.  The first did not have a name but came with a specific vision (that was shared with the massage therapist) of a female knight complete with sepulcher, sword, and lily of the valley bouquet.  The second was Jesus.

Now, before folks get all kerfluffle-uffled and knicker-knotted, let me say clearly that I am not claiming to be either Jesus, Babaji, Yogananada, or Sai Ba or any of those other energies that have move within me.  Here is what is what I AM saying:   I am all of those –part of a spiritual lineage that I have little intellectual awareness of, personal connection to, or educational preparedness for.  And we move and breathe  as one.

It’s not everyday that a former law enforcement professional wakes up with the gift to heal people and animals by touch and remotely, the capacity to bilocate, move with the invisible in the same fashion I do the visible,  and enter what some call Samadhi in a breath.  And it’s not for nothing.  I’m the next in a line of messengers and healers that began long, long ago.  What I say and how I bring  it may rock the boats a bit but the time for that is now.

This is my experience of the universe and my own human evolution. It does not require others to believe. It only requires that I stand in my integrity, that I drop all armor, and step fully into my role.  Now.

I may have ‘become now’ but before there was, I was.

Kermit and the Dalai Lama

Kermit-the-FrogWhile enjoying my snow day with high-speed internet, full power coffee, and fuzzy socks, I trolled my FB stream.  Usually, because my interwebz access is rather limited, I hop on and off so today was a treat.  I even kinda, sorta like recycled photos and quotes that I’ve seen in the past.

I can’t remember who posted it but one of the recycled was a photo of a cross-legged Kermit quoting the Dalai Lama:  “Do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.”  I like all things Kermit.  I like and have a lot of respect for the Dalai Lama.  I’m going to differ with his thought about how others effect us, though.

I think there are times when we really need other’s behavior to bother us.  We need to be SO bothered that we stand up and shout, “STOP”!  We need to be SO bothered that we moved from complacency to action–whether it is a change in our own behavior or to creating change for someone else.

It’s one thing to not take some things personally.  It’s another to not take things personally enough.

We are responsible.  For ourselves and each other.

The Love Lobotomy

“In a society at war with man and nature, a religion of peace and love might be fantasized into creed, rituals & otherworlds while it’s professed adherent continue to live [in a way that doesn’t support it]. ~ Jim Corbett (Goatwalking)

“Everything is Love” is a mantra that’s been around a loooong time and has recently begun to irk my nerves.  It’s achieved a cult-like status with millions of people, variations shared ad nauseum with pretty pictures via Facebook and Twitter.  It’s surpassed ‘group think’ guided by a guru (or two) and segued into a something resembling mass hypnosis & contagious complacency.

Second-hand thought (Check out Ayn Rand’s Fountainhead for a good definition & description. Henry Roarke is brilliant.), is, essentially “thought based not on direct sensory experience but on assumptions, teachings passed down by others.” It’s a lot like sensory deprivation.  Intentionally–albeit not necessarily consciously–stunting our vision and growth.  We lose creativity, the knowing of real connection, openness, access to all that surrounds us–like a lobotomy.

To me, the notion that “Everything is Love” is nothing more than a panacea–a proverbial pill–that inhibits real exploration of self and the world, an experience of the interconnectedness of things within and without us.  Especially in this New Age/transmodern melange of metaphysics, self-help and spiritualit-y & -isms framed loosely by interconnectedness, by being One.

I mean, we all (those of us who know the world in that way, anyway) want to acknowledge being connected to things that feel and appear loving, loveable, lovely.  However, the notion of being connected to infanticide, hate, fear, rage, paraphilias, betrayals, massacres, greed, jealousy, torture, other forms of cruelty (never mind recognizing our responsibility for and in response to those things) or perceived negative behaviors & actions with which the world turns isn’t our cup of tea.

To me, the over-simplistic notion that every thing (think about it: there are somewhere between 3 and 100 millions species–the specific is certainly arguable amongst most scientists–but there are about 4000 species of aphids alone) is any one thing is what contributes to what I call contagious complacency.

All of life and the myriad of systems that create and move it are intricate, inter-related and so complex that most cannot grasp it.  I don’t understand the continued need or desire to create avoidance and lack of engagement with the world and with one’s self.

There is no shortcut.  Despite our accustomed nature that indicates otherwise, the nature of life cannot be described in a sound bite.  I don’t know why it is that all of those who know otherwise—those who have experience and the courage to have ‘stepped of the path of the civilized mystical experience’ keep wearing this freakin’ rut down so far that it creates tunnel vision (borrowed language from Linda Kohanov in the Tao of Equus).

We wacky humans have always looked for ways to understand the universe for ourselves and explain it to others. How we devolved from great mythic creations of Homer and his contemporaries, poetry of Rumi and others to the escapism of a single phrase is, really, not much of a mystery.  We want it quick, now, sanitized, and, in a way that keeps us isolated from all the nasty, funky, gunky, that we’re connected to.

Not that we don’t create some stories, mind you, but more on that later.  There may be the potential of love in everything but there are endless potentialities, possibilities and realities that have nothing to do with love that exist everywhere—within us & around us.  And, they are each interdependent.

Give yourself another kind of psychosurgery or stimulate your frontal lobe another way. Broaden the mind, open the eyes, and begin seeing, not hiding or avoiding.  Look for the funky, nasty, and change it.  In you. In the world. That’s love.  Lovely. Loving. And loveable!

Know ye not that ye are Gods. ~ Moses (the dude, not the dog)

Thomas Merton to Aldous Huxley during their discussion about genuine & pseudo-mysticism:

 What I would call a supernatural and mystical experience…has in it very essence some note of a direct spiritual contact of two liberties, a kind of flash or spark which ignites an intuition…plus something much more which I can only describe as “personal”, in which God I known not as an “object’ or and “Him up there” or “Him in Everything” nor as “the All” but as—the biblical expression—I AM, or simply AM…this in oth the kind of intuition that smacks of anything procurable because it is a presence of a Person and depends on the liberty of that Person.

I found the above passage when reading The Hiding Place of God: A Personal Journey into the World of Religious Visions, Holy Objects & Miracle  written in 1991 by John Cornwell.  I picked it up at the local library when I figured it’d only be polite to actually use some of their actual books while spending eight hours at a time there hogging their wifi.

This passage and learning that even Padre Pio pissed people off because he didn’t do things the way others thought he should were the only things I took away from reading the book.

I’m not really sure why I picked this title except that it’s probably got something to do with me looking for factoids and other niftiness to share with people when they ask questions of me.

I had the same thought when I recently re-read The UnCommon Touch by Tom Harpur, The Intention Experiment by Lynne McTaggert, and Mike Dooley’s latest.  It’s frustrating to find myself going back to the habit of doing things for other people—not in terms of being in service to others but in terms of trying to satisfy their ideas and ideals about how I should act, speak (that’s my next post! Oh.Boy.), clothe myself (seriously), identify or define myself, etc.  As annoying as it is, I keep going back there.

I think it’s not so much that I want to please people but that I feel I need to load up data & information to defend myself, my own ideals & my own knowing.  I keep trying to use social media as a way to create a real, honest discussion about stuff relating to healing.   Maybe I really am itching for a fight instead.  A way to say, “Listen to ME, please!!” “Hear me.  Don’t dismiss me.”  “See, Saint so-and-so/Christ/Mohammed/Granma Green did it, too!”   I don’t seem to feel quite satisfied to go about my business quietly, hoping that…hell, I don’t know what.

But let me regress six paragraphs and revisit Mr. Merton (do you call a Trappist monk Mister or Father?).  My “ecstatic” experiences are a veritable cornucopia of variety.  They occur with regularity, sometimes extend for an entire day (with an in-n-out of it quality), are sometimes visual and aromatic, almost always emotional & time-space warping, and, usually confounding (with a so-what-do-I-do-with-that-now? quality).

However, my experiences aren’t religious or “spiritual” (used loosely here) because nothing in my experience is religious or spiritual as others define it.  I still call it a Divine experience sometimes but I’m not connecting it to “something outside of me that is more powerful than me”.  I just don’t see God as other people do.  I don’t just give it another name like Source/Universe/Grid/flavor of the day term.

Are there things outside of us?  Absolutely!  Are there invisible things all around us? Yep. Powerful? Influential? You betcha! More than us?  Nope.

One response I’ve received from someone trying to argue that people couldn’t be god-like, godly, god recently was, “But we don’t create storms!”  Me: “Really?  Think about it for a bit and then get back to me.”  I was never gotten-back-to but my point was this:  We do create storms.  They may not appear as weather ‘incidents’ but our actions/inaction, beliefs, & judgments change the barometer around us and those we touch directly or indirectly.    Never mind the fact there are humans who create, move & manipulate climate-related weather all over the globe. Not a forte of mine because outside of being amused at dissolving a cloud or three, I can’t see how that is human business.  We already have interfered in a pretty heavy-duty way, methinks.

I think we’ve become so comfortable over the course of time gifting power and responsibility for life-stuff to something(s) outside of ourselves that we forget how powerful we really are.

So, uncomfortable with the idea of self-identifying with our own greatness that we will easily dismiss and denigrate one who says, “I see God in you.”  It’s all great and fine for India to sing it but that’s just a song, right?

I don’t see anyone made in the image of how they define their god or inspired by something outside of them. I see each person as the god that they see outside of themselves.

I see you as god.  You are God. You are the embodiment of all those things that you’ve connected to, associated with & assigned to that “Him up there”, the “Him in Everything”.  Within you is every iota of power, wondrousness, control, glory, beauty, destructive potential, love, mystery, holines, and, the kicker, responsibility for self and others that has been assigned to a Higher Power.

Can you imagine seeing another like that?  Try it.  Just for grins & giggles.  Today.  Really.  Start with yourself—go to the mirror when you get home and instead of being critical of the wrinkles and that stray eyebrow hair, look into your own eyes (not at your forehead as if to avoid yourself, mind you), and talk to yourself in the same way you talk to God.  Dare ya.

Does that mean that people are no longer annoying, irritating,?  Um…No. That doesn’t mean we lose our human-ness.  We just gain a different level of humanity.  It just means there is a level of respect, a conscious willing suspension of judgment, a heightened awareness that you are he, connected to him/her and others, an acceptance and love that requires no ‘practice’.  It’s effortless.

Yep, loving another, loving all others can be effortless.  Those in the “spiritual” frame of mind are famous for talking about the greatness of Source love, the exquisite Love of the Divine, infinite Love of the Universe, the I AM love from the Violet Flame, etc, etc, Uhhhh…heeeellllooooo?

What about the infinite, exquisite, greatness of human love?  The one to one human sorta love.  The love expressed between two human beings.  How ’bout you start practicing that, too.  It’s painless.  It’s fun. It’s free. It can even become comfortable!  Check out this community & share the love here if you’re moved to.  If not, start with yourself. Go back to the mirror and have a conversation with yourself.  Then with those around you.

So, YOU ARE god.  YOU ARE love. You are all the endless potentialities. You have no limits.

And I love you all the more for it!

If you could get

Rid of yourself just once,

The secret of secrets

Would open to you.

 

The face of the unknown,

Hidden beyond the Universe

Would appear on the

Mirror of your Perception.  ~ Rumi

“If you want peace of mind, I suggest you resign as manager of the Universe.”

That line comes from Dan Millman’s Sacred Journey of the Peaceful Warrior.  Here, Mama Chia is reminding Dan that really, seriously, we don’t need to do anything. Period.

It annoys us humans–particularly those w/ amazing gifts, to think that we don’t need to, or in fact, should not DO something.  I bring this up because as England burns amid other violence, there has been a repeated call among those of the proclaimed Lightworker (I’m really not quite sure what that means these days) persuasion that we must intervene, must heal the situation. In addition, there are organizations who have created for themselves the purpose of interrupting, intervening, ‘transmuting’ political systems, economic institutions, and other foundations of countries and entire regions.

This is a reminder that there are processes, systems, billions of people, mysteries, and a bigger picture involved than anyone can really grasp.  Some may have a distinct ‘sense’ of it but not hold a true understanding of: a) what is really happening, and b) how interference in those things can cause harm to others no matter the original, personal intent. It’s uncomfortable to know that these same processes, systems, people, mysteries, and other unknowns are working themselves out in their own way and maybe not to our liking. But our liking isn’t the point.  Each person involved in the aforementioned is working himself out in his own way and influencing those around him.  It is not for us to decide what’s good or unnecessary and change the ripple effect of or for others.

We quite often forget that this is about us.  Us, first.  It appears that, even for those who claim to be more ‘developed’, it is much easier to identify (subject to our own definition, of course) something or someone else in the world that ‘is wrong’ and try to ‘heal’ or ‘fix’ it rather than focus on ourselves  My request to those healers, transmitters, foundations that we truly do that and rather than intervening in things around us, we work within and help in matters rather than ‘heal’ those that don’t fit into how we think the world should/would/could  be/behave/process.  Get active in politics if you want to change political systems.  Get involved with your local police force or corrections system if you want to see that change.  Participate in the opportunities there are to feed and comfort others, create ones that don’t exist if that is your calling.  Bail someone out of jail. Mentor a child or two. Help another rebuild their home. Put compassion to work in things that you can influence.

As further food for thought, I share this from Frank DeMarco’s “I of my own knowledge” here: http://bit.ly/oaj8gR   A snippet here:

“Everybody to his own work. What is one person’s true work is another’s evasion.

Here is your dilemma, and it is the dilemma people of good will must always face. Whatever your intentions, your ability to change the way things are is going to be limited…

Life is vastly too big for anyone to comprehend…

So, if you are tempted to abandon your siege of a hencoop to march off to a pretended siege of Babylon, remember that only you are created able to do your work. And what is your work? It is to be present to your opportunities and problems, and make of them what you will. For some it is the expansion of their awareness along social lines. For others, it is the absorption of patterns. For still others it may be the dissemination of insight or learning. For others, it is the day-to-day execution of defined responsibilities. How are you going to say that any of these life’s paths is wrong? How can you know how any one is going to react with others? The short answer is that you can’t and no one can. And, since it can’t be done, obviously it can’t be the path.

Live your own life; and live it your way.”

And Be while letting others do the same.

What if it really is “In Between the Stories”?

Inspired by Rumi, blog posts about hate, love and god; and 24 hours steeped in connection with all that is.

In Between Stories ~ Rumi 

Did you hear that?

It’s the man who was looking for treasure.

He wants me to finish his story.

You didn’t hear him?

Then, he must be inside me yelling, “Over Here! Come over here!”

Don’t think of him as a seeker, though.

Whatever he’s looking for, he is that himself.

How can a lover be anything other than the beloved?

Every second he’s bowing to the mirror.

If he could see for just a second one molecule

of what’s there without fantasizing about it,

he’d explode.

His imagination, and he himself,

Would vanish, with all his knowledge, obliterated

into a new birth, a perfectly clear view,

A voice that says, “I am God.”

That same voice that told angels to bow to Adam,

because they were identical to him.

It’s the voice that first said,

There is no reality but God.

There is only God. 

We humans have all sorts of habits.  Some we change.  We quit smoking.  Eat healthier, walk a little more, buy orange Christmas lights rather than white.  Our taste in music changes, our groups of friends wax and wane.  There are some things, though, we tend to hold on to for dear life.  As if they are our life.  Think about the current state of religious & political affairs to catch my drift.

There is another idea, a habit that many cling to that I want to ask about here.  Similar habits framed in a slightly different fashion, methinks. We seem to cling to the notion that there is something outside us that guides, chides, tests, taunts, aids, destroys, makes and takes.  We seem comfortable at some level, too, with using words like co-creator; phrases like Divinely-inspired. We’ll accept messages from aliens, atlanteans, metatron and michael but seem hard-pressed to consider that we are creator, we are inspired, we are our own messengers.

And, so I ask the following:

What if there is no other great orchestrator or observer?  What if there is no oversoul, higher guardian, a higher level of Godliness, an ascension to something, somewhere else? No intergalactic collective of whatever that we need to ask permission of?  Nothing or no one outside of us?

What if there is no one thing greater than each individual one of us?

What if we really hold onto the ideas and likenesses Christ, Mohammed, Abraham,  and other prophets because they chose to act as if they were God and we think we can’t or shouldn’t?

What if we really have all that power and grace?  What if we are that power and grace?

What if

We.  Are. God. ?

What if you are not an embodiment of something outside yourself?  What if you are not made in the image of something greater than you?

What if you knew you needn’t be saved or rescued?  What if you are that greatness you’ve imagined outside yourself?

What if, to know yourself & see yourself as god only took one breath? One thought? One experience?  Would you breathe and see?

Would you be able to look in the mirror and know? Would you be willing to know?

You. Are. God?

What if you saw in the mirror not just your face but all the grace, glory, peace, kindness, mercy, ferocity, love, compassion, strength, courage, and wisdom within you and all those you touch? And, those you will never know?

What if that one small thought led you to know every. single. living. thing as god as well?  Same as you but different?

Would you see your neighbor, lover, child;  prisoner, pensioner, plumber, trash collector, welfare recipient, jihadi, dog catcher and fighter as god?  Could you do that?  Could you hold them in the same regard as you do your heroes and other holy ones?  Excited for their life’s opportunities—the same as your own?

Would you do that?  Would you be willing to take that great leap in your own life to know yourself?

As. God.

Are you afraid of the greatness?  Of the responsibility for yourself? Others?  Are we afraid of that?  Are we afraid that it’s really not unknown to us?  That there is no real mystery or magic to it? That it’s really that simple?

What if we didn’t have to wait for anything?  What if each of us were already worthy and ready? Just as we are…

God.

What if it took nothing else but to just Know?

What if we really are the bees knees, all that and a bag of chips?  What if we are just singularly pretty freakin’ awesome human beings?  What if we all knew that and lived as such, recognizing that divinity in each other and every single thing?