Initiation and transformation

Our simple seeker was meditating on possible differences between
the concepts of initiation and transformation, and if in fact ..

If there were differences then what would they be?

I’ve been asking myself that question.

Sometimes it helps when an outside …

You are hardly an outside voice.

How do you know?

I can feel your thought.

Singular?

A single energy.

Perhaps we are each and all part of a single energy.

Perhaps, but …

Perhaps but what?

How does that relate, if it does, to the differences,
if there are any, between initiation and transformation?

Even as you ask, I sense awareness developing within you.

You might have pulled a curtain back.

From within you, or from within your mind?

Is there a difference?

No, none at all.

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We have to start somewhere

Grass-Roots Spiritual Philosophy

Our simple seeker was lost in thought. What thought? She was meditating
on The Fool, the tarot’s anti-here, or so he seemed to be, at least as he
begins his journey through life. He isn’t even given a number, unless
zero can be considered as such.

Like herself, or as she sometimes is, he seems to be full of high hopes
and self-confidence, but, again, as she once was, …

How are you any different, now?

I don’t quite fit the picture.

In what way?

The Fool, at the beginning of his journey, has no real life experience
and is totally unaware of immediate dangers, let alone those that are
waiting for him somewhere down the line. He’s lost in thought, enjoying
the perfume of the rose in his hand. He doesn’t see the cliff he is
about to step off, into a high altitude. Even his small four-legged
companion seems unable to warn him. Perhaps we were all innocents at
some time in our past.

What would it look like?

What?

Innocence.

The Fool, I guess.

Yes, and yet as the tarot’s Fool will discover through experience,
innocence is a beginning – the only possible beginning, of our life’s
journey, our mission to discover who and what we each are.

Only a beginning?

Yes, but an important one.

In the sense that we have to start somewhere?

Yes, or something like that.

Choosing is not the final decision

Grass-Roots Spiritual Philosophy

Our simple seeker was meditating on the Eight of Cups, comparing different interpretations. But the results were all the same; a sense of excitement
and depression, at one and the same time, or rapidly replacing each other
in her mind. Why?

Are you asking me?

No, I was thinking to myself, but according to some, it’s the same thing.

Is it?

No. I would know.

What does it mean to know?

I would have experience, and I would have learned from it.

Perhaps you have.

Re: choosing change rather than it choosing me?

Yes.

But, I never choose lightly.

The choice would have no value if you did.

But, does choosing necessarily create value?

That depends.

On what?

On how much is at stake in the choice.

How can we know for sure?

There is no knowing for sure.

But, the choice must still be made?

The choice has been made, in your mind, whether you dare
to act on it or not.

Yes.

What does that mean?

You know it means that I accept that you are right, again.

Will that knowing determine your choice?

No.

Yes.

Transparency as a cover-up?

Grass Roots Spiritual Philosophy

A warm and misty afternoon beneath gently moving
foliage. The trees shaded Georgia, or would have,
if there had been direct sunlight shining down. But,
at this time of early afternoon, that would have been
impossible. The sun would be visiting her neighbours
on the South facing side of her apartment building.

That thought distracted her from a message the trees
were sending to her. Their branches and leaves were
anticipating rain and were quivering at the expected
pleasure. Now, moist air, or the hint of moist air,
turned her attention to the sky. She saw what the trees
may not have. The wind had picked up and was blowing
the clouds away, unless more were going to replace them.

Meanwhile, The Path of Tarot, seemed to need to be
reconciled with itself. A Jungian approach to Tarot
suggested the Major Arcana represented a personal path
of individuation.

But, our simple seeker still clung to the concept of
psychic integration and transcendence that The Tree of
Life seemed to explain in a way that appealed to her.

She suddenly sensed Spirit observing her state of
confusion.

What card would seem to share your present state of mind?

Wow! I’m not an expert, yet.

Would that change the card?

It might.

How?

For now, card Seven, The Chariot, would seem to express
my intent to discover.

What?

What life is about and why.

And, if and when you become an expert…?

It’s not if, but when.

Then, when …?

Card Seventeen, The Star, although I do wish she had
some clothes on her.

Perhaps she wishes to express transparency.

But, to express it so obviously suggests that her
nakedness is a cover-up in reverse; a pretense at
transparency rather than the real thing.

Yes.

What does that mean?

Could it mean agreement?

Possibly.

What else?

Perhaps a pretense at agreement.

Yes.

I Ching and Tarot in Dynamic Relationship

Our simple seeker was enjoying the privacy of her secluded garden,
surrounded by several perspectives on the study of Tarot.

How did you manage to move your focus from The Hermit as a solitary
seeker of enlightenment to comparing Aces?

The Major Arcana relates to general personality characteristics, while …

Did I ask …?

The Aces introduce each of the four suits of the Minor Arcana, and
offer a sacred gift – a promise, almost.

How could a gift or promise be sacred and still be no more than
an almost?

It’s not a freebie.

Then, what does it cost?

It’s not for sale, at least it cannot be purchased.

Then, how does one receive a gift that isn’t free and yet cannot
be purchased?

It’s a promise of reward if effort is made to follow one’s dream
or path, and is meant to inspire self-confidence.

How does Tarot differ from I Ching?

You’re asking me?

Yes.

From my limited understanding?

Yes.

Okay. They have little or nothing in common.

How so?

I Ching supports and explains social stability within a system
of generally accepted ground rules, or rules of order.

And Tarot?

Tarot attempts to explain inner dimensions of personal experience;
feelings, desires, needs, fears, and interests, and tries to make
sense of them and blend them together. And more; it encourages
individuals to believe in their individual value and inspires them
to reach for success and happiness.

And I Ching does not?

Personal satisfaction and happiness do not seem to be high priorities
from an I Ching perspective.

Then, why study both?

We seem to need both individual and collective general rules of order.
But, we also need personal, emotional satisfaction; needs fulfillment.

Where does awareness fit into this scenario of a two-sided view of
the ideal society?

I didn’t call it ideal.

No. I did.

Then, I will let you explain where and how awareness fits into the
picture.

Awareness is understanding the reality that the individual and
collective are as two parts of an infinite oneness, within which
they share a dynamic relationship to each other.

Ego as Our Life Force

A simple seeker was meditating on the card she had pulled
randomly from her tarot deck – a lone figure with a lantern.

Do you know what lived experience The Hermit expresses?

I seem to relate to it.

In what way?

As a solitary seeker.

How can you consider yourself to be solitary while I’m
part of your life?.

It’s possible to be alone in a crowd.

We’re not a crowd.

What difference does it make?

To what?

Aloneness in thought.

What about aloneness in emotion?

What about it?

If you can feel alone in thought …

You slipped “feel” in.

Yes, to prove a point.

That thoughts aren’t isolated from emotions?

Yes. They each are one of two sides of the same reality.

The reality of …?

Our state of mind.

I sense “ego” coming into the picture.

Yes. Ego is the central mover and pusher of our thoughts,
emotions, and actions. We can’t do or even feel without
our individual life force – ego.

There may be thousands, and perhaps tens of thousands
who don’t seem to be aware of this reality.

“This” suggests that you’re aware.

Yes, but I have no power of persuasion to inspire others
to shake off the illusion of ego as being something they
can function without, and still be able to live in the
physical world as an individual, beyond the control of some
guru, more aware than they are.

Yes. They’d be as slaves.

Perhaps they are, now.

Yes.

A Restless Spirit

Simple seeker, what is it that you claim to be seeking?

Why do you say “claim”?

How sure are you of what you are seeking, if you are seeking
anything that you don’t already possess?

In which case …

Yes.

Does it matter?

Yes, we should know what it is that we do not now possess,
and yet seem to need to.

Perhaps …

Yes, anything we might wish to have can be categorized under
one general heading.

Peace of Mind?

Yes, and to the question you are almost ready to ask,
the answer is yes, it is possible to possess peace of mind.
Would you like it?

No.

Yes, a restless spirit, after my own heart.

Wanting changes nothing

Our simple seeker had slipped into one of her moods of hopelessness of ever being able to understand all that her spirit teacher shared with her.

What is the problem, now?

You didn’t refer to my problem.

Any problem is a problem. It belongs to itself, alone, and not to any individual.

That may be so but it doesn’t make senseĀ in this instance.

It makes sense in every instance. There is a reason.

How can there be a reason for me to experience such a depth of awareness
at feeling a sense of oneness with all, and then, almost immediately,
a complete separation from everyone.

And everything?

And everything. Just as I’m able to claim it all as a part of me, it’s all torn, or
tears itself away from me. It’s not fair.

Go on.

And, you must have know the struggle would bring me pain.

Sometimes pain serves us well.

But it hurts beyond hurt.

That’s Life.

But, I don’t want it to be like that.

Wanting changes nothing.

There are no Losers

Our simple seeker was struggling to abide by the rules and regulations
seemingly demanded by a nameless control freak operating from the safety
of the world wide web, wherever that was.

She had listened to the ominous messages that kept warning her that
her antivirus service was about to expire. So, she purchased an
updated version, but not online. Would that have made a difference?
Not that it mattered anymore.

The old system still had eleven days to go and refused to be replaced.
She didn’t exist. Her name and email belonged to somebody else, she
was informed.

Do you have an alias?

I can hardly remember me.

Then, what are you going to do?

I’m turning everything off. That’ll teach them, whoever they are. I’m
taking time out to enjoy that glorious sunshine.

Problems will not go away, you know.

I don’t care. I did what I could and I will return to struggle again
and again, until the job is done.

That’s what life is all about.

That would be a depressing thought.

What do you mean by would be?

If it were really about having to get it all right.

It is about that. But, the good news is …

There’s good news?

Yes, we have forever.

Isn’t there another game we could play?

Life is the only game in town, but there are no end of versions
of how to play it.

Does anyone ever win?

Everyone wins.

If they live long enough?

Yes, and they do.