Current Update as of July 06, 2003
Inspired by The Edgar Cayce Institute for Intuitive Studies
Edited by HENRY REED, Ph.D.
"There is one truth, and it is for us to find it." This aphorism epitomizes my feelings on seeking spiritual truth, and I believe many people share this view, but Truth can only be hinted at in a book or suggested to us by a spiritual master; it can only be found by searching within ourselves. If we search within in a disciplined way, each day our perception of truth grows as we grow in consciousness. As I have grown in consciousness, I find I am compelled to share some spiritual tools that I use in my eternal search for truth.
I will start by demonstrating how I find spiritual truth by seeking within. I will briefly describe how I do it, and then I will see what spiritual wisdom comes forth. Keep in mind that since I am doing the search, what I find will be useful to me; it may or may not be useful to you. You can take it into meditation or prayer and ask your source of higher wisdom if it is true for you and appropriate for your use. I ardently hope these words and tools will help you in your search for truth.
is how I search within. Every day at about the same time of day, I find
my favorite meditation chair in my living room. I do this early in the
morning so I will not be disturbed by anyone, but you should use any time
best for you.
Now I would like to demonstrate this process as I sit in front of my word processor. I don't like to write by hand as it only slows me down in translating inner wisdom into the written format. I have transformed my computer room into a sacred temple so that I may meditate there and write wisdom from within directly into my computer. In some cases I have to sketch what I see because it cannot be put into words. Some people also like to draw or paint a picture or compose music as their favorite way of bringing inner wisdom into an outer expression.
When I do these spiritual exercises, I am fully conscious and I am in complete control of my faculties at all times. It is not necessary for me to go into any kind of trance. If you use a trance, you have to have some way of recording the results. This delay in recording the results promotes distortion of the results from within and may result in a loss of information. The person doing the recording may misunderstand some of your words and interpret what you say differently from what you intended. Remember that anyone can learn to seek within and find wisdom, but it takes a lot of dedicated practice and the wisdom must be used to change your life. All of us have the potential to find wisdom within.
I will do a series of these spiritual exercises over the next few days to give you a feel of how I seek wisdom and use it in my life. I edit what comes to me to put it into plain language so that I might share what comes to me. Today, when I asked for guidance that I might share with you in my spiritual exercise, I was given one word, "detachment." In spiritual study's detachment has a special meaning. In general, it means to become disinterested in your emotions, your cultural and social biases, and from your need to have the truths you receive from within validated by someone outside of yourself. Let me tell you what detached does not mean. To be detached from your emotions does not mean that you are coldly logical and have no emotions or are not compassionate, but it does mean not to be overly emotional like someone who wears his or her heart on their sleeves. If we get overly emotional about situations and people in our lives, when we sit down to seek truth, our minds will be on these situations or people, and we will miss the guidance that comes to us. Also we must not get too attached to the thoughts passing through our minds as we will not be able to focus on the guidance we get. The mind never stills, but with training we can get to the point that the guidance comes in between the thoughts in our mind. We must get out of the habit of attaching too much importance to what others think about the guidance we receive. If in our hearts we feel the guidance is true for us, we must not worry about what others say about our guidance. As the Bible states, "Do not cast your pearls (of truth) before swine."
Let me give you an example from my life where I trusted what came within more than I trusted my mind and emotions. At work, I had a colleague and friend with whom I had worked with closely for many years. He wanted one of my employees to fix his computer network even though my employee was not responsible for the network. My colleague wrote a letter which he threatened to send to the Dean of the College, threatening to put a negative comment in my employee's work history. This took place on a Friday. I became very angry because this was unfair and unethical. I was tempted to rush over and confront my colleague in no uncertain terms. Then I took a deep breath and realized this would not be a wise thing to do and would not resolve the problem in a loving way. So during the weekend I took this situation into my spiritual exercises and asked for an amicable way to resolve this situation. Then a solution came to me and all issues associated with the problem resolved themselves when I went back to work on Monday. I kept the colleague as a friend and I did not jeopardize my employee's work record. Had I not learned to be detached from my usual mental ranting and detached from my emotions, I would not have been open to the guidance I received which I trusted and applied.
Today, my spiritual guidance has taken a direction I didn't anticipate when I started this essay. This is not unusual, but this illustrates that if we are going to trust our guidance from within, we need to go in its direction even if that direction is not where we intended to go.
My change in direction started at 4:50 a.m. When I awoke with a vivid dream, I immediately wrote in the notebook that I always keep on my night stand along with pen and flashlight. I will tell the dream in a slightly edited form and how I followed up on the dream.
"I hear the motors of heavy construction equipment. I am not surprised as I have been awaiting the equipment, but I am surprised that the workers have started already; I had not expected them to start for several days or weeks. I go to see what they are doing and to meet them. They have already dug a large hole. I see a new-looking water pump but it is the pump I want replaced. One of the workers says the pump looks like it is almost new and could be sold. I look in the hole and see a concrete foundation; I guess it is going to be what they set the new pump on. Then something weird is happening. It is like someone turned on a switch and all the workers and I are moving and talking but it is happening in accelerated time. We are moving very fast without trying. Then someone turns the switch off and we are talking and moving in normal time. The workers continue their work and I awake." Notice that I tell the dream as if I am experiencing it as I write. I find it helps me to remember more of the dream if I do this, and it also facilitates interpreting the dream.
Then I started my daily spiritual exercise and I asked for guidance in interpreting the dream. I replayed the dream in my mind and then I understood that the dream is a continuation of a theme from previous dreams and meditations. In these dreams and meditations I had been focusing refining my state of consciousness so that I could be more aware of spiritual guidance in all aspects of my life. I reached the following preliminary interpretation of my dream that I wrote in my journal after I recorded my dream. Keeping a journal is an important part of receiving and using guidance in my daily life.
"I get the impression that as I replace the old pump I am replacing my old consciousness with a higher consciousness. The new pump is small, more efficient, and does more than pump water. It pumps the ECK (the Holy Spirit of God) but the pump not only pumps but regulates the flow of the ECK. The concrete foundation is a newer more solid foundation for my higher state of consciousness. Then I get the feeling my balance indicator is operating. I remember the old feeling from within which indicates to me that I am in balance at a higher level of living and functioning in the inner and outer worlds. This seems to fit in with my previous dreams and contemplation in which my hardened consciousness is being purified. I think replacement of an old consciousness with a new more efficient consciousness is a more fundamental form of purification. This means I must be ready to accept a change in the way I live and work with others. I want to use this new consciousness to live a happier and more productive life by being a better channel for the ECK and the divine love that goes with it."
I need to explain what "the balance indicator" means to me. For many years in my meditations I have had images and feelings that indicate my life is in balance. It is a form of reassurance from the Holy Spirit that all is right in my life and that, at least for a while, that I have the proper balance of body, mind, and spirit. It is a confirmation for me that I have interpreted the dream appropriately and that my meditations are helping me achieve balance in my life.
This inclusion of my dream and its interpretation shows how guidance is available to us if we are ready to take our dreams seriously and meditate daily and if we are open to change in the way we think, feel, and act. I had not started this essay with the intention of discussing dreams and the importance of keeping a journal, but my guidance indicated that I should write about their importance. I was reluctant, at first, to include this personal guidance, but I trusted the Holy Spirit and followed where it leads. I had thought that I would meditate in front of my computer and type what was given to me, but my guidance pointed me in different direction. Presumably if you choose to meditate daily and study your dreams, you are doing so because you want to be happier and lead a more fulfilling life. If you want to be happier and more fulfilled, that implies that you want to change your thoughts and actions that created your present way of living. You cannot become happier if you do not change your daily life. If you want to change your life you must learn to trust your guidance and then apply it in your life.
I mentioned above, in beginning your search within, it is very important
to choose a spiritual guide who can protect you and give you guidance
while you go within. I found my guide, Harold Klemp, after having tried
many different spiritual paths. He is the present spiritual leader of
Eckankar. He not only teaches through books, discourses, and talks at
world wide seminars, but he teaches me in my dreams and in my spiritual
exercises. One of the major reasons I chose to stay with Eckankar is that
it teaches you how to attain spiritual liberation within your
present lifetime, if you do your spiritual exercises every day.
In closing, I would like to reiterate that anyone can do what I have done. The key is to establish the discipline of meditating daily, recording and studying your dreams, and keeping and reviewing a daily journal about the guidance you receive.
A Spiritual Exercise for Searching Within
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