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The Quartz Crystal – From A Shamanic Point of View

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Quartz crystals, among others, have been used by a number of ancient cultures around the world for multiple purposes. In many cases, they've been used by Shamans for healing and spiritual purposes.

  • Reflect On:

    Consider the knowledge our indigenous cultures had, and all of the knowledge we have today that shows healing has a lot more to do with how the masses perceive it today. Back then, it was really about healing, today, it's more about profit.

Crystals have been used by several ancient cultures from around the world for a very long time. You can find literature on them in the Vedas, Buddhist traditions, ancient Egypt, and ancient Greek lore. They are also described in the Shamanistic practices of several indigenous cultures as well as within ancient lost civilizations like Atlantis. Even Nikola Tesla was fascinated by Crystals, saying that “in a crystal, we have clear evidence of the existence of a formative life principle, and though we cannot understand the life of a crystal, it is nonetheless a living being.”

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These gemstones have been central to various cultures throughout human history. So why does mainstream anthropological literature seem to ignore crystals? Today, the meaning and significance of crystals are virtually unknown, which is a shame. The significant power of crystals could be used to help planet Earth and improve the overall health of the entire population.

Relegated To ‘New Age’ Practice

Today, crystals are placed within the “New Age” category, and because of that, they are given somewhat of a negative connotation. It’s not as if only modern groups all of a sudden started having an interest in crystals out of nothing; interest in crystals do indeed have an interesting and ancient origin.

This article is going to focus on the Shamanistic perspective of crystals, as outlined by Michael Harner, in his book The Way of The Shaman. Harner is the founder of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies. He actually pioneered the introduction of shamanism and the shamanic drum journey to contemporary life and is recognized as the world leader in this movement.

Harner received his anthropology Ph.D. in 1963 from the University of California, Berkeley, and has taught at a number of institutions, including Columbia and Yale University, He served as co-chair of the anthropology section of the New York Academy of Sciences, but left academia in 1987 in order to devote himself full time to shamanism. In 2003, he received an honorary doctorate in recognition of his achievements in shamanic studies.

As a website dedicated to his legacy points out,

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Michael Harner is not just an anthropologist who has studied shamanism; he is an authentic white shaman, observes the distinguished transpersonal psychologist Stanislav Grof. Dr. Harner began learning about shamanism in 1956-57 while studying with the Shuar (Jívaro) tribe of the Ecuadorian Amazon, and started practicing shamanism during his 1960-61 stay with the Conibo people of the Peruvian Amazon. He subsequently returned to the Shuar for additional practical training in shamanism. He became recognized as a shaman by the indigenous shamans with whom he worked, including ones belonging to the following peoples: the Conibo and Shuar (formerly Jívaro) in South America; the Coast Salish, Pomo, and Northern Paiute in western North America; the Inland Inuit and the Sami (formerly Lapps) in the Arctic; and the Tuvans of central Asia. In Russia, assembled Siberian shamans of the Buriat people publicly declared Michael Harner a great shaman, upon witnessing his shamanic healings in 1998 (the word, shaman, comes from Siberia). They also said he proved that one could do both science and shamanism.

Clearly, if you’re looking for a source to dive deep into the realms of Shamanism, it’s hard to think of a source as solid as this which can provide reliable information.

The Quartz Crystal: According To The Way of The Shaman

While there is potentially an almost infinite variety of power objects, there is one kind in particular that is regularly found in the keeping of shamans. This is the quartz crystal. In North and South America, Australia, southeast Asia, and elsewhere, shamans ascribe a singular importance to these pointed, six-sided stones that are usually transparent to milky-white. Shamans use a wide variety of sizes, ranging from the length of a little-giner joint to rarer ones a foot or more in length…The quartz crystal is considered the strongest power object among such widely separate peoples as the Jivaro in South America and the tribes of Australia. People as distant from one another as the aborigines of easter Australia and the Yuman speakers of southern California and adjacent Baja California consider the quartz crystal “living,” or a “live rock.” The widespread employment of quartz crystals in shamanism spans thousands of years. In California, for example, quartz crystals have been found in archeological sites and prehistoric burials dating as far back as 8000 years.

In his book, Harner goes on to describe how throughout all these cultures, this crystal is viewed as a healing tool and a spirit helper. He goes on to say that “the western Yuman shamans enter into a special partnership with their quartz crystals and must “feed” them; this is reminiscent of Jivaro shamans feeding their spirit helpers with tobacco water in order to keep them.”

Harner explains how some shamans in training had a piece of quartz “sung” into their foreheads so that they would “be able to see right into things.” This concept is not much different from the concept of the “third eye.”

Seeing Into Other Worlds

Quartz crystals were used from everything to seeing into other worlds to assisting in the extraction from patients of harmful disease or “intrusions,” as Harner called them. He gives an example of the Warao shaman of South America, who believed that, at death, their soul would merge with the quartz crystal inside of his rattle and ascends to the sky in the form of light. The Australian Kabi shaman with “many crystals in his body” could journey down into the deepest waterholes, where the rainbow spirit lived, and receive more quartz crystals. Such a shaman would arise “full of life, and be a medicine-man of the highest degree.”

A lot of power is associated with the quartz crystal according to shamanism, and Harner points out:

“In modern physics, the quartz crystal is also involved in the manipulation of power. Its remarkable electronic properties early made it a basic component in radio transmitters and receivers. Thin wafers sliced from quartz crystals later became basic components for modern electronic hardware such as computers and timepieces. Western science has obviously advanced to the point that it recognized the quartz crystal as a power object, something that shamans have known for thousands of years.”

While this all may be coincidental, it is one of the many synchronicities that make the accumulated knowledge of shamanism exciting and even awesome.

Not only did shamans used their quartz crystals to heal, they used it to peer into the future, for seeing as well as divination. An interesting point in the book Harner brings up is the crystal ball, “with which people in our culture are familiar, at least by name, is simply a polished descendant of the old shamanic crystal.” He explains how some indigenous cultures used crystal gazing to see visions of the past, what’s happening in the present as well as to see in the future.

One thing I came across that really interested me, was distant healing. It’s something I’ve written about for years and something that’s been exemplified by countless peer-reviewed studies that have been published in multiple journals.  Distant healing is using one person’s intention and directing it towards another for the purposes of healing. If you want to learn more about that, you can check out the Institute of Noetic Sciences, or refer to this article that goes a little bit deeper into the mind-body connection and the power it has to heal.

“The shaman sent out the crystal at night to bring back the image of the sick person. When the image arrived, the shaman danced around the crystal, shaking his rattle, and then ordered the crystal, as his spirit helper, to extract a harmful power intrustion from the image. The distant person, whose image it was, was therby healed.”

Harner’s book goes into much greater detail regarding the uses of crystals in shamanism, among other places. The above is just a tidbit, nothing but a quick snapshot of what you can learn from reading his book.

How to Cleanse & Choose Your Crystal

You can simply visit a rock shop or a mineral store, and pick out one that you feel attracted to. As Harner explains,

Do not immediately put the crystal you choose into your bundle or with your other power objects. First you must cleanse it, since its history is unkown to you. Cleanse the cyrstal by washing it in the water of a natural spring or the ocean. Then keep it seperate from your medicine bundle until the arrival of a winter or summer solstice. Take it to an isolated high place, such as a mountain top. There split a tick at one end, push the unsplit end into the ground, and place the quartz crystal, point upward, in the cleft of the stick. Leave it there eight days in the sun to “re-charge” before putting it in the medicine bundle. Periodically between solstices, you should remove the cyrstal from the bundle and “wake up” its power. This is done by hitting its nonpointed end lightly on a rock protruding from a spring or an ocean.

Interesting, to say the least, isn’t it? These sacred and special objects should be treated with care, and our special connection to them, as well as well all of nature, is something that needs to return to our planet if we are to move forward into abundance and create a new human experience. “The Way of the Shaman” must return to planet Earth, in perhaps a more modern form. Who knows, perhaps this is something in our future as humanity is being called to walk a more spiritual path, one in which we truly realize how everything is interconnected, and how nature provides us with everything we need. Combine this wisdom with human ingenuity, and we have a future that most of us cannot even comprehend.

Source:

The Way of The Shaman, By Michael Harner

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Consciousness

New Moon In Aries: Pursuing Wholeness

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We are having a New Moon in Aries on March 24th. This is initiating a new 29.5-day lunar cycle and a new wave of energy for the coming month. However, the astrological configurations mentioned in this article will be more prominent over the coming two weeks. This cycle will include a Full Moon in Libra on April 7th/8th.

Before getting into the astrology of this New Moon, a lot of people have been asking me about the current coronavirus pandemic and my perspectives on it. It is very much connected to the previous Lunar Eclipse, Solar Eclipse, and the Saturn-Pluto conjunction (which happened at the same time) that I wrote about. The energies of eclipses can play out at different times in the 6 month period after they occur.

The recent Mercury Retrograde in Pisces/Aquarius (and its post shadow period) reflected the escalation and increased awareness of this situation along with some further confusion. In the days after the Mercury Retrograde ended (during the last Full Moon period in Virgo), we gained some more clarity (or perceived clarity) around the seriousness (or perceived seriousness) of the situation which lead to the majority of the world beginning to take extreme precautions and the financial markets going haywire. All of this fits like clockwork with the astrological weather. Check out my video below in which I talk about it more.

New Moon In Aries Conjunct Chiron

Aries season began at the Equinox as it always does per the Tropical Zodiac. Being the first of twelve signs and initiator of a transitional season (following the transitional sign of Pisces) it initiates the Astrological New Year.

Aries is the domain of self, independence, and individual needs. As a Cardinal Fire sign ruled by Mars, it is associated with assertiveness, courage, directness, pioneering, and leading. It is quick, bold, and energetic. Negatively, this energy can be inconsiderate, selfish,  hot tempered, combative, restless, impatient, aggressive, and overly competitive.

This New Moon is applying a conjunction to Chiron (also in Aries) which makes its themes very strong throughout this lunar cycle, but more so over the following two weeks. Chiron is associated with healing, wholeness, cleansing, spiritual growth, gifted abilities, innovative solutions/ideas, shamanism, self-awareness, discovery, teaching, and indigenous people.

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It is holistic, maverick, bridging, integrating, creative, unorthodox, paradoxical, and about bringing things together that are quite different from each other and wouldn’t be expected to mesh well. Chiron also reflects dilemmas, spiritual or physical wounds, blockages, negative patterns, disease, pain, suffering, and parts of the whole which have been fragmented.

Chiron related issues (as mentioned above) can be getting in the way (or we may perceive it like that) of us reaching our potential. With it being in Aries, these challenges may be connected to the themes and qualities of that sign. Chiron related issues want to be overcome or handled more positively which can help to open other doors. They can be transmuted into gifts, abilities, awareness, and further spiritual embodiment.

New Moon and Chiron Square The Lunar Nodes

The New Moon and Chiron are also in a square with the Lunar Nodes. Chiron has also recently transitioned from being closer to the South Node in Capricorn to now being closer to the North Node in Cancer as it moves in that direction. This configuration with the Nodes can reflect being at a crossroads with the energies of these opposing signs as well as between the past and the future.

Ultimately this is helping to push us to focus more on the Cancerian qualities and areas of life, while reducing Capricorn areas and/or letting go of its negative qualities. More beneficial developments and growth can occur when we do this and it may also help us to tap more into Chiron’s positive traits and healing potential.

When we focus on the Capricorn side we may face more challenges and may also be inhibited by Chiron’s negative expressions which can be getting in the way of our potential. However, this can also call for some sort of positive (or win-win) integration between both sides of this polarity. If so, then the emphasis is to be on Cancerian themes while expressions of Capricorn are fulfilling the Cancer focal point.

Cancer is about home, security, protection, emotion, instinct, family, nurturing, caring, emotional support, sensitivity, and other domestic aspects of life. Capricorn is associated with goals, ambitions, career, duty, productivity, business, government, critical thinking, banking, orderliness, structure, consolidation, conservation, and determination. Negatively expressed, it can be cold, aloof, pessimistic, overly concerned with social standing, or flaunt status and achievement.

This can also be a good time to reflect on the wounds of our past to help us in how to proceed into a more empowering future. Be open towards any sort of modalities, practices, information/media, journaling, people, situations, or anything else that can help to facilitate this process.

Saturn Just Entered Aquarius, In A Sextile With This New Moon

Saturn, the planet of restrictions, boundaries, limitations, responsibilities, commitments, discipline, maturity, and the elderly, recently moved into Aquarius, the social sign of groups, the collective, humanity, intellect, technology, and innovation. It is in a connecting aspect to this New Moon in the self-oriented sign of Aries conjunct the healing, impairing, and maverick Chiron.

Saturn literally entered Aquarius just over two days prior to this New Moon after being in Capricorn since late December 2017. However, Saturn will re-enter Capricorn in early July after it goes retrograde in the 2nd week of May. It will then re-enter Aquarius in mid-December where it will stay until early 2023. By that point it will be fully in that sign instead of back and forth between two signs. We will then notice its exclusive energy even more strongly and likely in different ways than we are currently.

With Saturn getting its first taste of Aquarius, perhaps certain things that are going on now, in these coming months, and especially late in the year can be seeding something pertaining to how this process will play out until early 2023.  I will be covering more about this energy and its significant upcoming astrological configurations in my future content. Join my mailing list here to get notified when my work gets released.

Making Intentions & Things To Consider

How can you use this period to overcome old wounds, blockages, and your negative expressions to assist you in reaching your potential and achieving wholeness? Do you have issues around independence, individual needs, or sense of self that need to be addressed? What can you do to be more caring and nurturing without sacrificing while still considering and acting on your personal needs and self-development? Are there any aspects of your ambitions, career, social status, that are getting in your way of emotional fulfillment?

These are just some examples of what to consider or focus your intentions on at this time. However, it is good to reflect on anything else that is coming up for you. It is generally best to make any intentions within the first 24 hours following a New Moon. The exact moment it will occur is 9:28am Universal Time on March 24th. You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

Follow me on INSTAGRAM, FACEBOOK, and YOUTUBE for more astrology-related content.

astrology, astrology readings, carmen di luccio

I’m doing a BIG DISCOUNT during the pandemic period with 40-50% off personal readings.  Gain more astrological insight into what is going on in your life and have a better understanding of your individual potentials. Get a personalized astrology reading with Carmen (author of this article) specific to you based on your exact birth date, time, and location. Click here for the discounted rate.

 

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Consciousness

Conscious Truth Behind Coronavirus Lockdown

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Now is a time for deep reflection on the state of our world and how we wish to shift the way we live our lives on this planet. Society has an opportunity to change, are we paying attention?

  • Reflect On:

    Do we simply want to go back to 'normal life' after this? Or is this giving us a chance to see things differently?

I have seen an unprecedented amount of perspectives about what is going on with this global event. Typically, there are a few theories that emerge with something like this. A mainstream narrative, perhaps a couple political narratives, then a few alternative narratives. But in the case of the COVID-19 pandemic, I have seen narratives from virtually anyone with a voice. This has created an incredibly confusing landscape, but I hope to shift that a bit with the video I want to share with you below.

Perhaps the people that I believe should most take a breath are those that are angry, hateful and upset that some people are not terrified about this pandemic and choosing not to stay inside. Instead, some people are going for a walk outdoors to get fresh air, and this is enraging a certain part of the population. This group also seems to be asking their government for martial law and to take control of the food supply. My reflections towards these people are why are you feeling so angry and fearful? Why are you forgoing all of your power to the government? When have they given you a reason to trust them?

In fear, we will not have a good immune system. In fear, we will not have clarity. Take a breath, enjoy what independent media is sharing as the narratives are not riddled in fear like the mainstream media’s is.

As always, I feel these massive global events come down to consciousness and how we think about our world. We are in an unprecedented time right now where we have an incredible opportunity to break up the status quo and begin looking at what our world truly is at the moment. For those that are fearful of a totalitarian state, one question to consider is, do you truly feel that with how much more aware people are now than during 9/11, is a totalitarian state actually possible? I personally don’t think so as I don’t think enough people will stand for it.

Over the last 11 years I have seen so many people wake up to what’s going on. People you might not expect would change. At this point, even if the Deep State tried to pull something, I don’t think people would let it happen. Our collective consciousness is also truly asking for something different of our world, of our everyday life. It’s time for a great change, shift, and upheaval in and of our current systems and structures within society.

The main message of the video below is that it’s time for us to get back to dreaming, wondering, exploring and envisioning what world we wish to create. This can be the main focus of our conversations during this time, and it may serve the best to do so. My feeling is that now is a time to engage in practices of dreaming, imagining, and talking about what we could change and create, as opposed to just waiting for things to go back to normal, or just waiting for something to happen. This is an opportunity for us to collectively talk about and take action on creating a different world, as opposed to having someone else created for us.

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Enjoy the video below as it goes into much greater detail as to what I’m wishing to share.

I will be continuing to post regular thoughts and updates on Instagram, as well as go live. You can follow me on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/joemartino29/

*Note, the first minute has bad sound.

What You Can Do

Below are three important links to help you in potentially preventing coronavirus infection and perhaps even treating it. It also includes how you can stay calm and present during this time, as this is one of the most important things we can do.

How To Take Vitamin C Orally. It MAY Help Protect Against Viruses

Enjoy This Free Conscious Breathing Course To Bring Peace & Heightened Immunity

Foods That Weaken Your Immune System

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Due to the pressure of mass censorship, we now have our own censorship-free, and ad-free on demand streaming network!

You can stream conscious media 24/7 and enjoy mind-expanding interviews, original shows, and documentaries and guided programs.

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Consciousness

Parables For The New Conversation (Chapter 31: The Fisherman)

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The following is a chapter from my book ‘Parables For The New Conversation.’ One chapter will be published every Sunday for 36 weeks here on Collective Evolution. (I would recommend you start with Chapter 1 if you haven’t already read it.) I hope my words are a source of enjoyment and inspiration for you, the reader. If perchance you would like to purchase a signed paperback copy of the book, you can do so on my production company website Pandora’s Box Office.

From the back cover: “Imagine a conversation that centers around possibility—the possibility that we can be more accepting of our own judgments, that we can find unity through our diversity, that we can shed the light of our love on the things we fear most. Imagine a conversation where our greatest polarities are coming together, a meeting place of East and West, of spirituality and materialism, of religion and science, where the stage is being set for a collective leap in consciousness more magnificent than any we have known in our history.

Now imagine that this conversation honors your uniqueness and frees you to speak from your heart, helping you to navigate your way more deliberately along your distinct path. Imagine that this conversation puts you squarely into the seat of creator—of your fortunes, your relationships, your life—thereby putting the fulfillment of your deepest personal desires well within your grasp.

‘Parables for the New Conversation’ is a spellbinding odyssey through metaphor and prose, personal sagas and historic events, where together author and reader explore the proposal that at its most profound level, life is about learning to consciously manifest the experiences we desire–and thus having fun. The conversation touches on many diverse themes but always circles back to who we are and how our purposes are intertwined, for it is only when we see that our personal desires are perfectly aligned with the destiny of humanity as a whole that we will give ourselves full permission to enjoy the most exquisite experiences life has to offer.”

31. The Fisherman

Around noon on the East beach on the island of Allandon, the fisherman sat at a makeshift table gutting and cleaning his morning catch. He was so focused on his task that he took a while to notice his dog standing beside him patiently, wagging his tail with a large stick in his mouth.

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“I don’t suppose you came here to help me prepare the fish for market,” he said playfully. The dog continued looking up at the fisherman, eyes full of anticipation.

“No you just came to play,” he said as he scruffed the dog’s head briskly. “Play, eat and sleep, that’s your life, isn’t it?”

He put down his boning knife and wiped his hands off with a nearby cloth. “Well, I suppose I could take a break,” he said to his dog. He took the stick from his dog’s mouth and ran along the beach, leading the eager dog with the stick. Then he threw the stick far down the shoreline, and his dog ran after it at full speed and retrieved it for him.

After a while they returned, and the fisherman put out some of his dog’s favorite food, which the dog dove right into.

“Sometimes I wish I had your life,” said the fisherman as he picked up the next fish to work on. “I mean, you seem to have it all.”

The fisherman looked over to the dog, as if he was expecting a response. Of course the dog paid no attention to the fisherman, and kept on eating.

“Well there is one thing I have that you don’t, even though it probably causes more trouble than it’s worth,” said the fisherman, raising his boning knife with mock pride. “At least I can wish for a different life!”

What differentiates us from the animals that grace our planet is our self-awareness. We recognize ourselves as separate and distinct from our environment. More than any other we are the species that has traveled furthest from the Dao and have forged deep into the darkness of the universe. This is what puts us on the leading edge of consciousness, and what actually makes the discovery of who we really are all the more exciting and magical. If we identified solely with the source, the act of creation might be felt as something happening outside of us, rather than through the prism of our individuality.

Since animals are closer to the Dao than we are, they are more or less in flow with life all the time. They don’t have much of an Ego Self holding them back, and so they cannot help but live in the moment, grounds for occasional envy amongst us humans. And yet, even if it were possible to do, few of us would honestly want to trade places with them. Down deep we sense that the greatest experiences life has to offer are predicated on awareness, and the more conscious we become, the more sublime our experience of being inspired becomes. This inspiration has grown with the growth of our consciousness, and today is moving us towards the penultimate revelation: that we create our reality by the way we think.

Kernels of the idea that our mental state actually has some creative impact on our world and what happens in it have been circulating in our society for quite some time. In recent years, the conversation has intensified around the power of positive thinking, the value of visualization, the influence of intention. The full extent of the effect of our thoughts and the role they play in our endeavor to fulfill our deepest desires is something that I believe we are just coming to grips with today.

It is not a matter of much debate that we will be able to more easily ‘win friends and influence people’ if we think and act confidently and positively in their company. And with the power to draw strength from our relationships it is no big stretch to see how we can directly improve upon our esteem, our career and monetary success, and our overall enjoyment of life. The idea of visualization is a bit more amorphous, but it has certainly penetrated many aspects of our lives in relation to the outcome of our performance. My own experience in sports like golf, for example, has made me a solid believer in the assertion that we have to visualize a good result in order to ensure a good result. The clearer our vision is of what is to come, the more likely the intended outcome will occur. Be the ball, a conscientious golfer may remind himself.

In general, the idea that we will be successful if we believe we will be successful is not so hard to accept when we can make a direct link between our attitude and our own behavior, and then see that our behavior has a direct effect on our environment in terms of the way in which people and circumstances react to us. However it is entirely another thing to suggest that the way we think can affect the world around us at a distance as it were, with no visible ties to what we are affecting. Can we really believe that positive thinking can attract the right person into our lives at the right time? That visualization can bring us abundance from an unexpected source? That intention can actually affect the weather?

Actually, in some sense, it is only modern Western societies that have been skeptical about these possibilities. In earlier times these ideas were not only accepted, they were the foundations of tribal rituals and religious practices of all kinds. These practices ranged from carrying out personal vendettas to bringing much-needed rain to the communal crops. Perhaps the only difference is that rather than believing the power to be within the minds of each individual in their culture, they vested it in the particular deity that they were devoted to. There was no doubt in their minds, however, about the invisible connection between discreet things in their environment, and the ability to tap into this ever-present web of influence through prayer and other acts of devotion.

The advent of science, which ushered in the mechanistic world view, has made it difficult for us to give credence to these invisible connections between our thoughts and what actually happens in the world. More than ever in human history, our attention has been focused on the material connections between things, because it has been seen as the only way to gain the power to get what we want in our world. This in part explains the all-consuming supremacy of money in our modern world which, for all intents and purposes, we have made into a material ‘thing’ that is the main source of acquiring the other ‘things’ that are supposed to fulfill our desires.

When a claim is made that someone has brought something material into being and fulfilled a desire by their thoughts alone, the inclination of our materialist mindset is to write it off as superstition, voodoo, or the opiate of religious fervor, maintaining that we have evolved beyond such mysticism. When uncanny events occur that seem to present us with exactly what we want, need, or have been asking for, and no clear cause-and-effect relationship can be found in the visible world, our habit of thought has been to simply attribute it to coincidence and haphazard randomness.

Like many habits, this habit of thought has been hard to break. But we have begun to do just that. The evidence to the contrary has started to become too overwhelming. And more and more this evidence has been coming from an unlikely source—science itself. Contemporary research in physics and other scientific fields demonstrates that the mechanistic world view itself may be one of the greatest superstitions in human history. Mechanism has no choice but to maintain that our thoughts are simply random offshoots of physical processes in the brain, without transcendent design or purpose. The notion that we have any intelligence outside of the domain of our physical bodies, and that this intelligence can actually have an effect on matter, is untenable in a mechanistic world. However the discoveries of modern physics beg to differ. They are actually demonstrating that it has become more reasonable to assert that mind creates matter rather than matter creating mind.

It is no surprise that Albert Einstein, whose driving ambition in his scientific pursuits was to ‘understand the mind of God’, was a key player in the modern revolution of scientific thought, and of thought in general. In his seminal 1906 paper On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies, Einstein essentially put our idea of objective reality on the shelf forever. He showed that both time and space—the underpinnings of objective measurements—were themselves subject to the conditions by which they were being observed and experienced. In other words, the actual passage of time and measurement of space are relative to the perspective of the observer. With relativity, the nature of things breaks away from the cold calculations of pure objectivity and suddenly becomes subjective. Relative is how things REALLY ARE, meaning that there is no absolute or objective reality as such.

While it has taken quite some time for us to catch on to this fundamental idea—over a century, to be precise—our way of thinking and living is starting to come around. We are beginning to discern that what we used to consider to be objective truths are simply unconscious agreements, collective habits of perception that are so ingrained that we consider them unchangeable objective facts. Now certainly we need many of these agreements in order to live and relate to each other, but that is not the same as saying they exist independent of us. In other words, they need an observing consciousness to become ‘real’. The proverbial tree that falls in the forest with nobody around, then, actually does not make a sound—although it is debatable as to whether there could ever be ‘nobody around’.

The discoveries of quantum physics, which studies the behavior of sub-atomic particles, have only further refined Einstein’s notion, showing that the objective world is not so ‘objective’ after all. Let us take for example any experiment conducted by a scientist, purportedly an unattached and objective observer who desires to report on exactly what he sees and draw conclusions from it. This seems all well and good for ‘traditional’ observation in which a scientist can stay unobtrusively a safe distance away.

The only problem is that with sub-atomic physics, the physicist cannot stay a safe distance away because he cannot escape an intimate relationship to that which he is observing, influencing its behavior just by observing it. In fact, it has been shown now that some kind of exchange goes on between the observer and the observed in every act of observation. Its effects are simply more noticeable at a sub-atomic level. Heisenberg’s famous uncertainty principle confirms this very fact. Electrons exist around a nucleus not as ‘things’ as such but rather as ‘probability clouds’ that necessarily wait for the attention of an observer to bring the electron to an actual position in space. Without that attention, the electron is actually and truly nowhere in particular.

Now in the broader phenomenal world that we live in every day, the effects of observation are not so instantaneous. There is much more to do than to position a single electron. However, while the processes might be more complex, science is starting to prove that consciousness is a participant at all levels of activity. As Lynn McTaggert says in The Intention Experiment,

The implication of these early experimental findings [of quantum physics] were profound: living consciousness somehow was the influence that turned the possibility of something into something real…living consciousness is somehow central to the process of transforming the unconstructed quantum world into something resembling everyday reality.

The study of sub-atomic particles, the building blocks of life as we know it, has brought scientists to the unavoidable conclusion that consciousness affects matter by way of a unified energy matrix that orders the universe and weaves an intelligent design throughout the largest and smallest of entities, and all those in between. The long search of science for a unified field is now being conceived as an energy storehouse of all possible events in space and time. All things material originate in an energy state, as potential, waiting for consciousness to put sufficient attention on one possibility to bring it into material existence. In other words, material events don’t just happen, they all originate from the focused attention of an observing intelligence on a given possibility.

The next big step science is in the process of taking is determining whether we are restricted to the role of observer, of passive consciousness, or if we can actually affect the world of our everyday lives with our consciousness in ways that we actually want. What spiritual traditions have been claiming all along—that we can shape our world and our lives with our intentions—has become the subject of rigorous scientific inquiry. Ground-breaking work done by people like biologist Rupert Sheldrake is opening up a vast new field of possibilities. His explorations demonstrate that not only can intention intervene in the bringing-into-being of matter, it is actually the foundation of such processes.

There’s a kind of intention, a kind of goal-directedness inherent in the very nature of life in the most fundamental processes that enable embryos to grow and even protein molecules to form. And I think that the kind of conscious intention we experience as part of our mental life has its background in this goal-directedness which is inherent in all living creatures, and is an essential part of the nature of life and an essential part of the nature of the organizing fields that organize living organisms.

At the height of scientific materialism in the West, large numbers of people were skeptical of all things immaterial and came to doubt that there was any purpose to our being created at all. But purpose, goal-directedness, and intention are being seen more and more as the foundations of material life. As science gets turned on its ear, it shifts from being the strongest proponent of a universe devoid of meaning and conscious design to validating the role of consciousness and the existence of an invisible world of spirit out of which the visible world emerges.

It was not long ago that science took pride in its orderly mechanistic vision, one which had us living in an unspeakably beautiful, highly sophisticated and fully functioning natural world and yet seriously doubting that there was an intelligent design behind it and a purpose to our own existence. Today, no longer is science strictly the domain of the visible and religion the domain of the invisible. The line in the sand has been crossed, and the tacit agreement between the two camps has begun to dissolve. The result is that we are starting to feel whole again.

This did not all happen by accident. For me, this is the master stroke of Creation itself. It was intended that the illusion of materialism become so powerful that we could doubt there was an intelligence behind it—because this doubt itself had a highly transcendent purpose. With this doubt, born of the emergence of the Western paradigm, of the aggrandizement of rationality over intuition, of the separation of science and spirituality, we have been brought to greater heights of individual self-consciousness. We have been propelled into a complexity that distinguishes us even more from our source and yet holds the possibility that we can feel ever more of its power.

In the universe consciousness cannot contract, it can only expand. Expanding consciousness is the flow of life and the inherent mandate of all living things. Our capacity as human beings to be conscious of ourselves brings us to the brink of a great epiphany about our purpose here: we were created to experience being creators ourselves. We have begun our ascent into a higher level of complexity, one that empowers us to create our world anew out of our conscious intentions, grounded in our deepest personal and collective desires.

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