Friday, 2 December 2016


Try this interview with writer John Butler in Bakewell parish church in Derby diocese, where he meditates daily.  The son of a Russian refugee was a farmer but he explored the deserts of the world and then Russia, where he discovered the Jesus prayer, and also the presence of God. 

Sunday, 30 October 2016

The spirit of God is the life of nature, consciousness itself

A crematorium worker told me he didn’t believe in God, claiming there was no evidence, so I asked him if he had a mind.  He said yes, and I asked him how he knew. “I experience it,” he said.  “And I experience God,” I replied.  Later, I was invited to explore the furnaces which burn away human flesh, and the machines that crush up human skulls and bones into powder.

And outside the crematorium, contemplating nature in squirrels, trees, birds, grass and sky and clouds, trying to understand the nature of death, I experienced a sudden, lovely, gentle, intuitive voice; “I have given you the clues,” it whispered. Now, what is the experience of a sudden, lovely, gentle intuitive voice, if not an Angel?

Angelos means messenger, and in the Bible, messengers interact with our minds, in dreams, visions, and the events in nature. The theologian Thomas Aquinas said Angels learn though intuition, they don’t have schools and books, we encounter them intuitively, in prayer, creativity and ritual.

Aquinas also warned that if you ever make a mistake about nature, it will lead you to make another mistake, about God. The mistake is regarding nature as unconscious. Not only is nature conscious, but God is consciousness, and as the Orthodox Church says; “the spirit of God is the life of nature,” so true life is union with God’s consciousness.  All experience is only infinite consciousness, God’s infinite being.

Creatures cling to life, but life does not cling to creatures, and as St Paul wrote to those Corinthians; “Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God,” he said, but “if there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.”   This means nature transcends the gross physical body, the mental body, the subtle energy body. If this sounds irrational, or unscientific, remember...

Biologist Wallace, who discovered evolution with Darwin, thought intellectual beings guided it. Quantum theory has made Physicists realise matter is a field of invisible interactions. Einstein thought about light being timeless, how light moves from sun to earth in no time, but to external observers like him, it seemed to take eight minutes.  

What if Angelic, internal being, light, like photons, moves timelessly without mass in space, in the kind of life Jesus called eternal?  An Angel could not help but love you, and inspire you to rise above the lower angels of your own nature, lower because motivated by fleshly pride greed and fear, not by a love stronger than death.

Traditional theology has nine levels of consciousness governing this universe, the top three called cherubim, or divine knowledge, seraphim, or love, and thrones, or presence. Knowledge, love, presence surround you, and when the Bible asks; “What is man, that thou art mindful of him,” it answers, “we are a little lower than Angels.”  Jesus said in resurrection, we are as the angels. 

So despite vulnerability or pain, don’t cling, love is letting people be where they are, as 1 Corinthians says, a perishable body is sown, an imperishable body raised. True nature is peace, hidden with God in Christ (Col3:3). The world cannot give this peace and it cannot be grasped or defended.  All experience of the apparent physical mental world is only infinite consciousness, God’s infinite being.  Do you live like this?

Sunday, 31 July 2016

"Bidden or unbidden, God is present................................" - Carl Jung, Psychiatrist 1875 - 1961

Emotional release in a vivid dream woke me suddenly. I had been embraced by a relative from Canada, middle aged, overweight, grey haired, like my Father. He came to the door of a house in which I was staying. Outside and on the doorstep was thick snow. I have relatives in Canada, but I have never visited, so I did not know this person. But the dream had a quality.

It was cathartic and tailored, not random and associative, ascending a chain of mental associations. In it, I had been moving down a well decorated corridor while looking for a way out through a toilet door.  So... Canada was a metaphor for another world, one I don't understand, in which I also have relatives.  Paradise. 

Paradise was communicated using thoughts I do understand.  Snow is a symbol of a pure dimension, and the search for a toilet, a symbol of the call of nature. Looking for a door to take you from nature to paradise is useless, someone must come in and show you the door, for you to see, go through. 

Jesus did this in human culture, the dimension he showed is here, only you can't own it or imitate it.  The Bible is full of God talking to people through their dreams. But beware whenever religion, important as it is, becomes what Jung called in his "Memories, dreams, reflections," a defence against you experiencing God.

“God isn't someone else” - Thomas Merton, Monk 1915-68

The question of what we mean by ‘I’ really matters for happiness, because what most of us trust as 'I' is actually only a mirage, a mental self-image, and if we prefer this to unconditional happiness, we have conditional happiness – it depends on the transient weather of approval, control, health, and success. 

The selfless wonder of being, on the other hand, is eternal.  If it seems to me there is no such thing as unconditional happiness, ‘seeming’ and ‘me’ may be the problem. Psychiatry knows this. It drugs self. Psychology retrains it. Spirituality says there isn’t one. Deny self, said Jesus (Matt 16:24). 

So if one believes in a separate life, one will suffer it. Nor can we maintain good body sensations and deny bad ones. They all pass, transient processes, perceptions with them. People who can’t let go of 'I' don’t see groundless unity. But a person who can let go of ‘I’, enters the Being in relationship whom no-one has ever seen (John 1:18).  

This is an act of faith in the infinite mystery who really is. The only way to find this ‘I’, who is the true I am, and also God's name to Moses, is to go through life's desert +