by Arlene Arnold
As I write this column this morning, I am filled with gratitude. Through The New Times, I have had the opportunity to read what is hot off the press (you should see the stack of books beside my bed!). I have attended workshops that have stretched me and strengthened my commitment to serve. I have observed countless individuals who are making a difference in our world. In early December, I will be immersed in a continuing flow of ideas and positive energies through The Whole Life Expo in Portland.
In the next few paragraphs, I share with you what came from my inner guidance following one of those wonderful experiences, the Gregg Braden workshop called "Living the Days of Prophecy."
"This is a new day, a new beginning. What has been is over; what is, is now. Tomorrow will take care of itself. Of course, there are things that you do in preparation for what is ahead, but then they become part of the moment. In other words, keep your focus and energy in the present. Make every moment one of joy and peace. Do the best you can in this moment. That is all. Sit with the moment; appreciate it. Thank yourself for what you have created.
"Look at your creation. Is there anything you are finished with? If there is, feel it, thank it, and then discreate it. Feel what it is like to be without it. Consider what you want instead. Feel that; live it in your body. Then, create that. This is like a smorgasbord of experiences. Choose what you want to experience. Live it, learn from it, and then move on. When you have discovered what you like best, continue to create that. Keep going deeper with it. You may find there are many layers of experiences in one.
"See others as dipping into the smorgasbord. If they are not aware that they can choose other than what they are ingesting, they may continue to take in what they dont like. You can offer them a taste of something else, but they may choose to continue with what is familiar, being afraid to try something new. Do not judge them. Allow that this may be their greatest learning. It may take them a long time to realize the gift within the experience.
"Take an inventory of what you are experiencing in your life. What tastes good to you? What is satisfying? What is not? Choose from your smorgasbord with complete awareness. Then, you will truly know that you are the creator and that whatever you have created has served you well.
"Every experience is of value. Appreciate your gift of creation and your courage to persevere. Appreciate your love of the earth and your desire to serve that allowed you to choose to come to the human smorgasbord. Know that each part of your experience here adds to the understanding of what it is to be human."
You will find in this issue my article on James Twyman, reviews of Nick Bunicks new book and Christopher Love's new CD, and a feature on musician Herb Ernst, as well as the usual "smorgasbord" of material by and about local lightworkers. All of these are Pacific Northwest folks. All of them are creating an energy to bring peace and wholeness to the individual and to the earth. We are so fortunate to live in an area that has brought forth such healing energy. I give thanks for all of you (and I know there are many of you) who participate in one way or another to bringing a "heaven on earth."
THE INTUITIVE WAY
A Guide to Living from Inner Wisdom
by PENNEY PEIRCE
Beyond Words Publishing, Inc.
reviewed by Kate Lin
Most of us would be interested in enhancing our intuitive abilities if we knew how. Intuition can give us greater clarity on what actions to take and can give insight into the puzzles in our lives. Penney Peirce has written a handbook, The Intuitive Way, which leads us through the process of getting more in touch with our intuitive process.
In the first part of the book, she writes of achieving mental clarity. We are taught about getting in touch with subconscious blocks, getting in synch with our souls creative flow, and understanding the power of our thoughts and our worldview.
The second part of the book focuses on accessing subtle information. The author discusses how to get more in touch with our body, how to unite body, mind, and spirit, and how to interpret our bodys messages.
The third part of the book focuses on using our intuition in our everyday lives. We are given information about receiving guidance from our dreams and from our soul, manifesting what we need, healing ourselves, improving our creativity, and improving our decision-making abilities.
Every chapter contains a variety of exercises to help you get more in touch with your intuition. One example would be to ask a question of someone who intrigues you, and then write about what insights his or her answer might have triggered. Each chapter also contains questions to be used as a focal point for "direct writing." In direct writing, you allow a stream of words to spontaneously emerge. This process allows you to access deeper parts of yourself. An example of a direct writing question might be, "What do I need to understand about the time I failed to achieve what I thought I wanted?"
Peirce encourages the reader to keep a journal and to spend an hour a day doing the exercises in the book. She recommends covering no more than one chapter a week so that you can get in touch with unconscious resistance and do the necessary groundwork.
As much as possible, I tried to spend an hour every day doing the exercises and the direct writing. I actually progressed a little faster through the book than recommended (I averaged more than one chapter a week) because I found the concepts so enticing. I discovered that I was able to gain some clarity around various issues.
I found it especially interesting that I was able to dialogue with my subconscious to uncover whats at the core of some of my subconscious blocks. As a result of doing the exercises and reading the book, I feel like Im at the beginning of my journey of enhancing my intuitive abilities and that I have been initiated into a new way of looking at things.
The Intuitive Way is full of gems of wisdom and useful suggestions for enhancing our intuitive process and gaining clarity about our lives. The reader is encouraged to stretch beyond his or her current patterns in order to learn about new ways of viewing the world and accessing information. This is a valuable resource for anyone wanting to increase his or her sense of self-trust and inner knowing.
THE TRANSCENDENT LIFE
Understanding the Nature of True Power
by JIM ROSEMERGY
reviewed by Douglas S Johnson
This has been called the "me" generation, and there is a certain truth in this assertion. There are in our present world, more than ever before, many tacit messages that urge us to "get it while we can" and to "look out for number one," no matter what it takes or who gets hurt. Those pursuing the laurels of politics and fame are marinated in such messages. Jim Rosemergy's latest book, The Transcendent Life, is a guide away from such thinking. In this small volume, Rosemergy teaches his readers the true meaning of humility: not debasement or humiliation of the self, but rather the discovery of a true power that lies beyond our own limited personal dint. Its lessons are based in the paradox of Luke 18:14, that is, that the proper and wisdom-based relinquishing of power is, in fact, power itself.
The first step in Rosemergy's life-changing plan is acknowledging God as possessing and giving all power, which, in turn, allows us to tap into that power. Ironically, realizing our own ultimate powerlessness alone allows true power a way into our lives. To illustrate this point, Rosemergy calls to mind the story of David and Goliath. David was able to slay the giant only because he humbled himself and relied on God's power for the victory.
The second step is to work and wait for our time and purpose to make themselves known. This step is dependent upon the first. Only when we realize that we cannot adequately direct our own footsteps can we allow God to guide us to where we need to be in life and put us there at the correct time. We continue to work toward good, of course, but we are never to force any life changes before they are ready to occur with God's ease. To show us how this works, Rosemergy relates the story of Jesus turning the water to wine at the marriage feast. Jesus did not come forth at the beginning of the festival, waving his hands and making a big show, but rather waited until the time was right to perform his first miracle in simplicity and humility.
The third step is understanding that trying to please God with our own actions cannot succeed. King Saul and Saul of Tarsus both tried to please God, assuming they knew best about such things, and all that came of their efforts was waste and death. They found that such methods worked not for God, but rather against God. God does not need, nor want, courting with contrived earthly deeds. In the end, God is both giver and receiver, and, again paradoxically, only when we receive goodness from God can we offer it back to God.
The fourth step is knowing that prayer is not to be for the acquisition of "things." It is to build and maintain a holy relationship with God. Rosemergy uses as an analogy the building of the Tower of Babel. Its vain-hearted builders were trying to reach God in all the wrong ways, desiring to get goodness through the means of the physical alone, and such means, once again, led to confusion and destruction. When we pray always for temporal pleasures, we are like the builders of the doomed tower, missing the point entirely.
The fifth step is to realize that we must be as children, for children know wonder and awe. Jesus exalted the children, for they were still humbled by the marvels of the world. Rosemergy points out that wonder and awe aid us in the way of positive humility, making us know always that we are not in control, nor are we the creators of our destinies. In the end, mystery is God and mystery gives meaning to life, since with mystery, there can be no end to knowing or striving upward.
The sixth step is knowing that humility (allowing God's power and gently and quietly putting our own aside) brings exaltation the likes of which we could have never imagined nor created for ourselves. Again, there is the paradox, and Rosemergy gives the parable of the prodigal son as example. When the prodigal son went out on his own, full of himself and his dreams of glory, he soon found his plans and his powers insufficient to get him anywhere; in fact, they landed him in a pigsty. Only when he returned to his father, deeply humbled, were his dreams realized; only then, in fact, did he realize what he had desired all along and what was really important in life.
The seventh step is learning that forgiveness is for us more than for the one forgiven, in that it lets us grow closer to God and farther from our animosities. The story of the prostitute who washed Jesus' feet and was granted forgiveness by him illustrates this point. While the "righteous" men looked down upon the woman and so remained aloof and cold, Jesus was able to "descend," to humble himself so that he could see the woman for who she was, someone misled but more decent in her heart than all the Pharisees and Sadducees put together. Thus, when Jesus forgave the woman her sins, he not only opened a door to God for her, but for himself as well. His humility set him free to love and care about another, just as God would.
The eighth step flows naturally from the seventh: service, in humility, is true greatness. The disciples James and John began arguing one day about which one of them would be the greatest in the kingdom (still thinking Jesus' reign would be a temporal one). To teach the men what true greatness was, Jesus washed their feet and blessed them, demonstrating that commanding others was for the small and serving others was for the great.
Finally, in the ninth step of the program, we find that there is great strength and a great inheritance in meekness. There can be no humility in our hearts if there is no meekness in our actions. Rosemergy reminds us that Jesus fulfilled his spiritual purpose in remaining meek before Pilate, not by asserting himself as the Son of God, but by making of himself the ultimate sacrifice for the souls of others.
Many think Christianity is a bloody religion, and that the Christian God is a bloodthirsty God, but "blood sacrifice" must be thought of figuratively. Bloodshed itself does not save, but rather the willingness to be humbled as Christ, to become even a living sacrifice for those whom we love, and to love even those whom we do not know.
IN GODS TRUTH
by NICK BUNICK
Hampton Roads Publishing
reviewed by Arlene Arnold
Many of you have read The Messengers (by Julia Ingram and G. W. Hardin), a moving account of how the angels helped Nick Bunick to claim publicly what he had known privately for some time: that he is the soul of the apostle Paul reincarnated. In Gods Truth takes Nicks journey one step further. Here he attempts to answer many of the questions that have surfaced from readers of The Messengers and from participants in his symposia and lectures as well as the radio and TV audiences that have listened to his amazing account.
Over and over, Bunick emphasizes that we need to allow everyone to come to Gods truth in his or her own way. You dont need to believe in reincarnation to experience the love of God. You dont need to believe exactly as someone else in order to radiate Gods love. However, Nick is very clear about his own intimate understanding of what Paul and Jeshua (Jesus) were bringing to us two thousand years ago and today. He is also clear about distortions in the Bible that have contributed to fear and misunderstanding.
In his simple, straightforward manner, Nick answers questions about angels, mystics and psychics, God, death, Jeshua, Paul, the Bible, reincarnation, the end of the age, spiritual healing, and more. It is clear that Nick has done his homework as he cites many well-known figures who speak about reincarnation, and as he follows the historical trail that led to Biblical distortions. He also refers to his own experiences and to information that has come through his angelic guides and Jeshua.
For those who are ready for transformative life changes, Nick includes the words that have been given to him to help others experience spiritual healing. Through prayerfully reading and owning these words, one can experience an inner shift that many would call a miracle.
Nick concludes his book by calling us all to participate in what he calls "Gods Wave." At 4:44 p.m. (a time the angelic realm chose to bring messages to Nick and many others) on Sunday, April 4, 1999 (my birthday!), starting at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., we are invited to create a wave of energy and love that will spread westward, eventually covering the whole globe. This wave will continue to be energized through those who will stop each fourth Sunday thereafter at 4:44 p.m. to tap into this wave. If you would like to be part of this experiment, contact The Great Tomorrow, P.O. Box 2222, Lake Oswego, OR 97035, e-mail <TGT444@aol.com>, or check out <fourfourfour.com>.
THE GOOD TIMING GUIDE (1999)
by MADELINE GERWICK-BRODEUR
reviewed by Kathie Brooks
The Good Timing Guide for 1999 is a businesspersons in-depth month-to-month roadmap for favorable and unfavorable conditions in business based on planetary transits and moon cycles. This easy-to-read color-coded calendar contains a wealth of information on just about every aspect of business, from when to do promotional mailings, sign contracts, buy and display new merchandise, to the right time to safely fire that less-than-treasured employee!
As the owner of a New Age store, I am very aware of one astrological event during which things involving all forms of communications simply should not be done, or done with extreme care: Mercury retrograde. I have always had a vague idea that many other astrological factors were involved in the running of a successful business, and The Good Timing Guide goes way beyond this in its explanations, which can be easily grasped by the non-astrologer.
All the times listed are for our Pacific Time zone, so there is no problem with calculation here on the West Coast. You can also send to the Seattle-based company for a free quarterly newsletter to keep you updated. My advice to businesspeople: get this one and try it! Lets let the universe be our guide this year!
(Astro Cycles, 8111 Roosevelt Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115-4227)
LOVED BY ANGELS
by SABRINA FOX
reviewed by Claire Krulikowski
"I wondered...what am I doing wrong? Why can Esther see her angel, and I cant...Esther hadnt even asked to see an angel, while I prayed daily about it. Could her angel hear better than mine?"
Loved by Angels is insightful, honest, fun, and an easy read. Written by German television celebrity Sabrina Fox, it became a bestseller following its 1997 debut in Germany. Now, its U.S. release gifts us Sabrinas quest for the physical manifestation of angels in her life. Why couldnt she see them? Are they really real? What part do angels play in Gods divine plan, and when will it be that everyone will see his or her angel?
Other angel books relate angel genealogy or an individuals daily/miraculous encounters with angels. While moving experiences, they often share the result but leave readers feeling the author is somehow different or more blessed than they. Readers are left wanting: wanting to know how such divine experiences can happen for them, too; wanting to know if they, too, are really loved and blessed by God/Spirit/Source with celestial companions; wanting to know, to trust, that this is so in the face of skepticism and negativity they may receive from their spouse, family, friends, and society.
After reading Loved by Angels, I called Sabrina. She told me that in order to help others she knew shed have to be completely honest about her own experiences. That honest presence makes it easy to like and relate to her life, spiritual desires, experiences, and joys. Sabrinas lessons in trusting her angels messages weave toward the fulfillment of her lifes true purpose and offer readers easy guidance.
Anyone whos ever traveled overseas will enjoy Sabrina waving off her husbands fears of her solo departure to Rishikesh, India, for three weeks with only a small backpack and no confirmation of whos to meet her at the New Delhi airport or of how shed travel from Delhi to Rishikesh, with an assured "Dont be worried; my angels are with me."
With Sabrina, we learn a spiritual discipline honoring the God in herself and in all things, hear her friends angel stories, and are party to the living wisdoms taught by Sabrinas spiritual teacher Jacqueline Snyder and the holy prophet Zarathustra.
Despite her ardent desire, an angel never physically manifests to Sabrina; yet we feel the peace, love, and joy integrating within her and understand that their expression in her life will continually impact others. This is one of our gifts from the angels and God: that it is, indeed, our destiny, whenever we choose to make it so, to laugh, trust, love, and so change the world.
"I had learned to trust in God and trust in my angels," she says. "Trust had replaced my fear that something terrible could happen any minute...There is so much to see, and fear is like a pair of dark glasses that keeps (us) from seeing the light."
This book is a gift one my entire family will receive this holiday!
(Sabrina Fox will speak at the Whole Life Expo in Portland on Saturday, December 5.)
reviewed by Elana Lindquist
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A CHRISTMAS TAPESTRY
New World Music
reviewed by David A. Young
Among the most prolific contemporary composers/performers (Ive nicknamed him the Stephen King of New Age music), Medwyn Goodall does not set out to reinvent the wheel on A Christmas Tapestry. Instead, he goes for straightforward yet refreshingly original arrangements of eight seasonal chestnuts (both sacred and secular) and one original tune, "Christmas Reel." The result is a holiday album with the warmth and instant intimacy of your first music box, one sure to take its place among your favorites as the years go by.
As always, Goodall handles all aspects of the recording, arranging and producing as well as playing every note heard. The only instruments used are guitar (plucked with the same tenderness with which a mother sings a lullaby) and keyboard, but the voicing of the "orchestra" (woodwinds and percussion in particular) and "choir" are so convincing that one would scarcely know it. The familiar songs of the season carry inside them a familiar glow, and it is not compromised or rendered "cold" by the electronic treatments.
Rather, there is a hushed reverence for the material and for the listeners sacred space that makes this among the most charming holiday releases in quite a while. This is true even when the CD moves from "Silent Night" right into "Jingle Bells": not the easiest segue to pull off graciously!
Take a break from your hustle and bustle and relax with this enchanting music. Its a great way to re-center, ground, and remind yourself why youre doing it all!
THE GATES OF PARADISE
Discipline Global Mobile
reviewed by Pat Gallagher
In a way, this record is not for everyone. I was really taken by surprise by its scope and dimension. This is a piece of music that takes its listeners on a demanding, emotional roller coaster ride. Robert Fripp, well known for his work with King Crimson and Brian Eno, calls himself a "guitarist and soundscaper." The Gates of Paradise is filled with electronics and "Frippertronics," a sound like that of an electronic violin that is bowed with long, open tones, but it is Fripps guitar (with as many electronic devices as he can possibly plug his instrument into) that is the dominant voice. Assisting Fripp on this album is David Singleton, who is credited with playing/programming/manipulating the "digital compositor (SADIE)."
Fripp has long been regarded as a guitar virtuoso as well as a strident musical intellect and philosopher. The liner notes for The Gates of Paradise are beautifully written. Offers Fripp, "soundscape performances are part of an ongoing series of discovery which has the aim of finding ways in which intelligence and music, definition and discovery, courtesy and reciprocation may enter into the act of music for musician and audience." Fripp goes on to say that "music is a quality organised in sound and time. The quality is ungovernable, the forms of organization are mainly governed by the cultures and societies in which the music appears."
The Gates of Paradise is a dissonant, disturbing, and thought-provoking piece. It is not an "easy listen." The work makes emotional demands on its listeners. As I listened to the first movement, "the Outer Darkness," I felt agitated and restless. The answer may lie in the title of the first section, "a wailing and gnashing of teeth." The second section, "the Gates of Paradise" contains a song of such astonishing beauty, "abandonment to divine providence," that I found myself weeping, really sobbing at its gorgeousness.
The third movement, "the Outer Darkness (part 2)," features "In fear and trembling of the lord." Fripp was especially successful in this section in conveying the emotion of fear. This was another very difficult section to experience. The fourth section, "the Gates of Paradise (part 2)" contains two splendid songs that finally offer musical resolve, "sometimes God hides" and the achingly beautiful "acceptance."
Fripp sums things up by adding, "the qualitative dimension of Music is an aspect of Intelligence with which, through which, and to which we may connect and be interconnected. This should not be difficult, as we are already connected. So why is it so hard?"
Though I do not believe that this record is for everyones collection, I do believe that this is one of the most gifted albums that I have heard in a very long time. In turn, I offer Robert Fripps The Gates of Paradise as our album of the month.
reviewed by David A. Young
There have been plenty of recordings released over the years with embedded brainwave technology, promising unprecedented states of relaxation and/or enlightenment. I have always questioned the validity of the claims for the technology on the basis of the fact that the recordings in (under?) which theyve been used have been so boring that they would have put me to sleep anyway.
Along comes Christopher Love to change all that. OMFound is a nearly symphonic work on which he plays all the instruments and sustains the interest of the ear while at the same time quieting the interests of the mind. I call it "stream of higher consciousness" music.
The CD is designed to be experienced as a whole, so the sole track of just over forty minutes is thematically constructed in "movements" that go through five progressive and clearly defined states of inner awareness. Its success is in its knowing balance of the liminal and the subliminal, a balance that other recordings attempting the same goal have not, in my experience, achieved.
Love is a local (Bainbridge Island) writer (his most recent contribution to The New Times was "The Music of Change," published last month), musician, therapist, and teacher. Although I know that he has produced a series of successful self-hypnosis tapes, as far as I know this is his first music release. Ironically, its a tough act to follow, because I think it will be a long, long time before I feel the need to use any other CD to serve the purpose of this one.
On the disc, we are warned not to listen to it while driving (duh) and urged to "turn off the lights, close (our) eyes, turn up the music and allow the journey
In-Joy." Did you ever take a vacation somewhere and like it so much that you tend to return there over and over? Thats the way the journey facilitated by this CD is for me. I find new things to "in-joy" (both in the music and in the journey) each time I go, I can go as often as I like, and I only had to pay for the ticket once. Thats a heck of a deal for such a rewarding experience!
(Sadhana Records, 4700 Eagle Harbor Drive, Bainbridge Island, WA 98110;  545-1074)