The Authentic Self vs The Machines

Amidst all this we are foundering upon the collapse of sensemaking, the digitization and politicization of everything, systematically retarding our ability to understand the world and our relationship with it. We have lost touch with our inner knowing, set adrift upon a vast ocean of competing narratives and agendas. Which captains are we to believe, which shores are we to seek, and which winds are we to reset sail upon? These are questions that lie at the heart of this book.

Grace and the amazing story of John Newton

Amazing Grace touches a universal human theme, that forgiveness and redemption are available to all humans, no matter how much we have “sinned.”[vi] There is another layer of existence beyond our story of despair and suffering, and it involves a deepening awareness of an intelligence that is not within our immediate control, forces that our small-s-self can barely sense. This is why “Amazing Grace” is one of the most sung of all songs in the English-speaking world, with thousands of recordings. With every orbit of our planet about the yellow star, individuals of our species sing the tune around ten million times.[vii] Many of us live life acting out a story that we did not consciously choose, via a self that has not understood who we truly are. If we can accept that without judging ourselves or others, without making it wrong that we have not quite been true to ourselves, then our Authentic Self is ready to emerge.

Tests of mindfulness: What happens when Daddy makes you eat your beloved pet for dinner?

To learn how to feel deeply is not easy. Many of the more popular or academic practices of presence do not understand this secondary level of healing. This is, of course, due to the limited aims of most of these practices. The purpose of many current mindfulness modalities is to permit calmness, and they are not usually healing practices. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why some mindfulness studies indicate that mindfulness practice results in a small percentage of practitioners becoming more depressed, anxious or even suicidal.[ii] Mindfulness may allow us to relax just enough to leave us poised at the gateway of ancient caverns of the psyche; but ignorant of the cruel goddess. Those practices may not provide us with the proper tools to navigate our way out of that murky domain.

Of Ghosts and Cyborgs: The Tribes that Linger Still

Yet the spirits of the ancestors move within us still; nervous, foraging ghosts with hungry bellies, scanning incessantly for sustenance, water and predators upon the African savannah. Despite our increasingly protected, controlled lives, we humans of the 21st century remain prone to the whims of our biology. And perhaps to mind fields that connect us beyond space and time to the trauma of past lives lived and ultimately lost by our desperate forebears, now long returned to the dust from which their physicality arose.

The Ghost Watcher

The Ghost Watcher is a self-awareness (or awakening) mental exercise which can help free you, by bringing your mind under greater control. We live in an era of the politicization and weaponization of everything. Everyone wants a piece of your mind, while almost anyone gets to mouth off their opinion (even if nobody wants to hear it). In this context, being able to quieten your mind and pull out of the battlefield of monkey-minds has become crucial to living an empowered life.

Reclaiming Your Power from the Machines in the Age of the Sick Click

It is helpful to think of the E-Word of media and social media as the mass monkey mind. In meditative traditions, the “monkey mind” is the term used to describe your chattering, unchecked inner world, which (if I may mix my metaphors) has a tendency to wander about indiscriminately like a blind man stumbling along a crowded street without a walking stick. The blind man keeps bumping into people, either cursing them or apologizing frantically in order to deflect their anger, even as the other pedestrians apologize or curse him back. Because he cannot see, the blind man doesn’t realise that all the other pedestrians are equally as blind, and all without their canes.