Monday, August 31, 2009

Meanings, Maps and Territories Part Two

With today's article I would like to post some information from Daniel Pinchbeck's Breaking Open the Head: A Psychedelic Journey into the Heart of Contemporary Shamanism. Orignally I was going to mix 'n match information from my favorite investigators into the Otherworld who have authored beautiful, exquisite, profound and paradigm changing books-for me anyway. However, I got to thinking that it would be best to keep the post to one author and subject at a time. The subjects and ideas these people present can be quite fluid-and I think this is necessary to talk about events, beings and places that are not rooted in what we think of as "normal" 3-D reality. This is also interesting to me because I think these denizens of the Otherworld and their workings impinge upon our world quite often-and also that our world isn't near as solid and law-abiding as it seems.

Sometimes I look at it this way: Say I were a fairy (maybe for me gnome would be better:)-or perhaps the ghost or spirit of someone killed in the War of the Roses. If I were either of these beings mightn't I look at this world-granted with as much of the horror that comes with it, from man's inhumanity to man. But I wonder if our world might seem endlessly fascinating if I were on the outside looking in so to speak. At the best of times I can look past so much that goes on and see a world of stupendous beauty, love, imagination and brave people who try to fight the forces of darkness against very long odds. I wonder if 99 percent of all sentient creatures in the multiverse suffer from the habit of the eyes and the hearts going blind because by habit and manipulation we are usually in the "same shit, different day" mode. Oh-and believe me I am no Pollyanna. I have suffered from depression (like many people do these days) a great deal of my life but am thankful that I don't normally get depressed to the levels that many do. I have also struggled with issues of addiction since I was 15 years old (when I had my first taste of booze) and again feel incredibly hopeful and lucky that this hasn't (and won't) defeat me (O yeah honey-I will survive! thanks Gloria;) and I say a prayer of gratitude for this everyday. Addiction issues, unfortunately, have killed people who are better in every way in their proverbial little finger than I am in my whole body.

Well this has been more than enough of my musings and theorizing -except for one last thought I would appreciate any feedback on. If my thoughts on the 99 percent "our world is blah" and one percent "wow our world is beautiful and amazing!" creatures has any validity at all-this is just a wild thought-maybe the trick to the human races survival is to learn how to be a one percent being?

Here is the information from Pinchbeck's Breaking Open the Head from pages 97 to 101. I will quote some passages where Daniel Pinchbeck talks about two deaths. The deaths of his father and a close friend and last of all some thoughts on the modern soul and capitalism that Pinchbeck has where he also uses information from another person to make his point. Talking about the death of his father Pinchbeck writes: "In his last years he excercised the freedom of someone who had dropped of the map. Escaping all fashions and trends, he gave up following anything except his own solitary path. In the paintings, he was whispering over and over the invisible secret he had carried with him all his life-from his early childhood in Brighton to the money-mad Manhattan where he had become an anachronism-that phantom of meaning and form that had haunted him. Working in solitude, he proved the theorm to himself alone...His art was his spiritual path. On his desk I found a scrawled note that said simply: "The need to believe." A bit later Pinchbeck writes of his father: "Reading his notebooks, I realized he was ambivalent about living into the new century; he wrote about feeling the society was increasingly depersonalized, inhuman. He never owned a computer, never received an email. He dreaded what he called "the great Robot Empires of the twenty-first century."

"He suspected that his belief system, the existential and handmade aura of his life and work, were not going to translate into this new era." After this Pinchbeck talks a bit about how his psychedelic explorations had helped him to rediscover his dream life after years and years of having bland dreams. Then he goes on to write: "In January, a few weeks after I learned that my girlfriend was pregnant, I had this dream: My father and I were sitting by a lake and he said, "Look at the light." Out on the water, light was rippling, a green light breaking into halos around the rocks. It looked like an effect from one of his paintings. I realized I was being allowed to have a last visit with him."

Nine months before Pinchbeck's father died, one of his closest friends overdosed on heroin at the age of 33. He has this to say about his friend and his death: "...R was a brilliant writer, a magnetic madman, good looking, strong and strong-willed, heir to a vast family fortune...But R had an unhealthy fascination with alcohol and drugs; he was fixated on self-destruction. The galleys of his first novel were on his desk when he died." A bit later Pinchbeck also talks about having dreams of his friend: "In the months after R's death, I had a series of dreams about him that were similar to the dreams I had about my father months later. At first there was a lot of confusion over whether or not R was really dead. I had several dreams where he overdosed but survived. Once, we spoke about this confusion at a party. Another time I visited him in the hospital. A few times I cried to him in my dreams, sorry I hadn't done anything to help him. I told him I hadn't known how. While he was alive, I had even fantasized about taking him to Gabon for iboga, but I knew he wouldn't be open to it." My note: Iboga is a plant-actually a psychedelic rootbark that has extremely powerful anti-addiction properties. I do not think you will see iboga treatments in the USA very soon as some very evil and entrenched interests make too much money off of the drug trade here.

Pinchbeck continues: "Almost exactly a year after R's death, I had a dream where I went into the "spirit world," a kind of limbo accessible by rope ladder to visit him. He seemed much calmer than in our earlier encounters. He was sitting in front of an old typewriter. I asked him what he was doing with himself now that he was dead. "I'm writing," he said. "I'm writing about my life. I'm trying to understand what happened." "That's really good. I'm happy to hear that," I told him before I left. Most people assume that such dreams are manifestations of the personal unconscious. Before my ibogaine trip, I would have thought that as well. After Gabon, I was willing to consider other possibilities. As time went on and I examined my dreams, I began to suspect that the spirits of my father and my friend were not just phantoms that my mind created. They were visitors from the after-death realm, still confused, sometimes resentful about their loss of human status...My unconscious psyche (what some traditions call the "astral body"), still attached to the world of the living, could help them understand what was going on."

A short while after this Pinchbeck relates some problems in the modern world to our being cut-off from the invisible realms, or what Patrick Harpur refers to as the Otherworld: "...We drown ourselves in alcohol and medicate ourselves into rigidly artificial states with antidepressants. Then we take pride in our cynicism and detachment...What is the truth of the era in which we live? "Walter Benjamin called capitalism "a religion of destruction." It is a religion because it is based on faith-untested and unproven by the individual acolyte-in materialism and rationalism. It is a passive worldview, a negative theology. Even in the 1920s, Benjamin recognized "the destruction of the world as the real goal of world capitalism-its systemic hope and transcendent ideal." Disbelief in any spirituality is also a belief system. The capitalist mind perceives the world purely in terms of material resources to be used for its benefit...If there is still a vague and oppressive sense of guilt, of wrongness and imbalance, this gnawing guilt spurs capitalism on to greater acts of consumption, more violent attempts to subjugate nature, more totalizing efforts to create distractions...The destruction of the world is revenge against a vanished God, and a drastic attempt to invoke the spiritual powers."

Benjamin writes: Capitalism is probably the first instance of a cult that creates guilt, not atonement...The nature of the religious movement which is capitalism entails the endurance right to the end, to the point where God, too, finally takes on the entire burden of guilt, to the point where the universe has been taken over by that despair which is actually its secret hope. Capitalism is entirely without precedent, in that it is a religion which offers not the reform of existence but its complete destruction. It is the expansion of despair, until despair becomes a religious state of the world in the hope that this will lead to salvation.

The image is of a nine- dimensional hypercube. It didn't necessarily have anything to do with the article-I just thought it was cool! I have forgotten at least one link (as usual) for this article-and if I can't find it by today I hope to have it here by tomorrow. I hope there was a little something in this for everybody-if not I will try harder:) I am working on information from several different authors and hope to have some posts about their work here soon. I may even do more from Breaking Open the Head. I think the order of authors next are Jeff Wells, Michael Talbot and finally Patrick Harpur. Wonderful people whichever order they show up in! Peace and be well to anyone passing through or stopping by!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Carl Jung, UFOs & Daimonic Reality

In Patrick Harpur's book, Daimonic Reality: A Field Guide to the Otherworld, he talks about many things similar to Jung's collective unconscious and Harpur's own notion of the slippery world of daimonic reality. My understanding after reading most of this wonderful book is that Harpur doesn't think we will every be able to describe many aspects of this other world that includes fairies (not my brand of them:), creatures like Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster among many other cryptozoological wonders, spirits, gnomes, trolls, UFOs and their "occupants" and other types of paranormal experience. He doesn't think we will ever be able to put these experiences on some great balance sheet because we try to literalize them. From page 48 in Harpur's book here is a quote that I hope will go some way towards explaining the concept of literalizing something: "When Jung spoke of images, he referred especially of course to those archetypal images we encounter as daimons and gods. We must not be misled by the word "images" into thinking of them as somehow unreal. We should, on the contrary, approach them as Jung approached daimons like his Philemon--"as if they were real people" to whom he "listened attentively." He did not, we notice, treat them as literally real, as we (mistakenly) treat hallucinations or (correctly) treat people in the street. He did not treat them as "extraterrestrials." Nor did he treat them as parts of himself, illusions or mere projections. He treated them as metaphorical beings, as if they were real people. And it is this metaphorical reality, as real as (if not more so than) literal reality--as real as Philemon--that he called psychic reality. In order to remove the taint of subjectivity which popularly attaches to the word "psychic," I shall call it daimonic reality."

Then on pages 13 and 14 of Daimonic Reality, Harpur goes on to say: "If Jung described the unconcious in terms of strata or levels, this was only a manner of speaking. The unconscious cannot be described in itself; it can only be represented by metaphors. It does not divide neatly into levels, for instance. Rather it is oceanic, shifting, seething, constantly in flux. Indeed, the ocean was a favorite metaphor of Jung's according to which consciousness is, of course, only a small island rising out of, and surrounded by, the vast unconcious fluidity."

"The content of the unconscious is a sea of images. These are usually, but not exclusively, visual--they can be abstractions, patterns, ideas, inspirations and even moods. The images of the collective unconscious are representations of what Jung called archetypes. This was not a new idea--it goes back to Plato, who postulated an ideal world of forms, of which everything in this world is merely a copy--but it was a new idea in psychology. The archetypes are paradoxical. They cannot be known in themselves, but they can be known indirectly through their images. They are, by definition, impersonal but they can manifest personally. For example, the archetype which lies, so to speak, nearest the surface is called the shadow. At a personal level, it embodies our inferior side, all our repressed traits. It might appear in dreams and fantasies, therefore, as a dark twin or a despised acquaintance or an idiot half-brother. At the same time, our personal shadows are rooted in an impersonal collective shadow, the archetype of evil, such as the Christian Devil represents."

And finally from Harpur's Daimonic Reality on pages 14 and 15: "The archetype which most concerns us is the one Jung called the self. It is the goal of all psychic life, all personal development, which he called individuation. This process forms the major task of our lives, in the course of which we are supposed to make conscious, as far as possible, the contents of our unconscious--for instance, by withdrawing our projections onto the world. The result is an expansion of personality and, finally, a state of wholeness which embraces even the dark and contradictory sides of ourselves. The self archetype is foreshadowed in the image of the Wise Old Man and consummated in his mystic marriage with the anima. But such personifications are not the only images of the self. They also occur in abstract form, most notably in circular patterns, often divided into four, which oriental religions have long understood and called mandalas. Such images can occur spontaneously near the beginning of the individuation process, or at a crisis in our psychic lives, as a guide to and token of the final goal. Jung believed that "flying saucers" were like mandalas; that UFOs, in other words, are projections of the collective unconscious. (However, I shall have more, and critical, things to say about "projection" later on.)"

And indeed, Patrick Harpur will have more to say! I do not think I have read a book that comes anywhere near as close to explaining why paranormal phenomena are so tricky, slippery and prone to exhibit strange but metaphorical and synchronistic behavior--on up to just plain bizarre and utterly nonsensical behavior. I hope to share more of what I have learned and am still learning from this astounding book very soon. The image is of a "Sunflower" mandala. Peace and be well to anyone stopping by!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Fascinating Life of Bulgarian Prophetess "Auntie Vanga"



Vangelia Gushterova was born on 31 January 1911 and died on 11 August 1996. She was a blind peasant/clairvoyant, and was venerated throughout Bulgaria as "Aunt" or "Granny" Vanga. She was born in neighboring Macedonia and is generally thought to have gained her powers after she lost her sight in a windstorm when she was 12 years old-although some place the start of her abililities earlier. During World War II Vanga's reputation as a seeress increased greatly when Bulgaria's King Boris III paid her a visit. On 10 May 1942 Vanga married Dimitar Gushterov, who had come to her to find out about his brother's killers but he promised not to extract revenge. Her husband eventually died of alcoholism in 1962. Vanga claimed that her extraordinary powers were bestowed upon her by invisible creatures. She wasn't able to explain much about them including their origin. She said that the creatures gave her information about people, which she was then able to convey because time and space were just an illusion. According to Vanga, the life of everyone standing in front of her was like a film from birth to death. H0wever, changing "what is written on the generation" was beyond her powers.

Most of Vanga's predictions concerned "normal" people's lives. She is thought to have hidden some extremely sad or hurtful information at times because it not only made her sad but she didn't think the man or woman could bear it. Vanga is known to have been rude to people whom she considered bad or sinful. The guilty person's actions were usually exposed by her in detail before she sent the "evil" person away. This aspect of her personality becomes very interesting in light of some of the company she advised or predicted for. Among these people are Soviet reformer and General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev, Soviet General Secretary Leonid Brezhnev, Russian nationalist leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky and Bulgarian Communist Pary General Secretary Todor Zhivkov. It is Zhivkov I will focus on briefly. Todor Zhivkov ruled Bulgaria from March 1954 to November 10, 1989-his rule ended the day after the Berlin Wall came down. He was by far ( except for Hungarian Communist Party boss Janos Kadar, who came to power with the aid of Soviet tanks in 1956 and left politics in 1988) the longest serving communist bloc leader. Todor Zhivkov was known to change his political views on a dime which could have explained his longevity. Zhivkov survived the Stalinist years, the Sino-Soviet split, Khrushchev's overthrow in 1964, an attempted coup in 1965, his daughter Lyudmila's death in 1981 (of which there is some speculation about. Lyudmila may have been being groomed by her father to take over power in the same communist "dynasty" manner of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il in North Korea. However it is believed by some historians that she ran afoul of the Soviet leadership because she promoted Bulgarian nationalism too strongly at the expense of communist solidarity. Bulgaria was always viewed by many as being the most loyal Soviet satellite state.) and the post Brezhnev years. Zhivkov instituted a "phony" glasnost/perestroika after Gorbachev came to power.

Zhivkov was always something of an enigma. He is thought to have personally ordered the death of at least one Bulgarian dissident, Georgi Markov, who was living in England in 1978. The death of Markov was rather James "Bondish." He was stabbed with an umbrella by a man at London's Waterloo station. The tip of the umbrella was made to inject him with the poison "ricin"-a very deadly poison in minute doses-into his body. Georgi Markov died soon afterwards. At home, however, as opposed to unpopular communist leaders such as Romania's Nicolae Ceaucescu, Czechoslovakia's Gustav Husak, and East Germany's Erich Honecker to name a few-many Bulgarian's thought of him fondly and called him by the nickname "Tato" which means "Dad" or "Pop." When Zhivkov passed away in 1998 there was real grief expressed by some Bulgarians at his funeral, although the commnist era was long past. Vangelia Gushterova appeared on Bulgarian State TV with Zhivkov and other high party officials. Some say that she even gathered information psychically for the Bulgarian secret service-the Derzhavna Sigurnost to gain the trust of her visitors.

Here is a thought I had while thinking of Vanga's apparent cooperation with people who were perhaps not the nicest in the world. Perhaps she simply knew she was "trapped" when certain officials came to call. It seems that Vanga did not have a great (or any) belief in changing the course of events (timelines) anyway. So when she was "courted" by Zhivkov or others she told them what she felt she "had" to. After all, whatever knowledge she imparted to Zhivkov didn't save him from falling from power, facing a possible prison sentence (not followed through on due to Zhivkov's age) and allowing him to flee Bulgaria with his wealth while it was still possible. This is of course just theorizing by yours truly. I had another thought as I was typing this although this is in the "weak" category due to Vanga's apparent belief many or all events couldn't be changed. Maybe Vanga foresaw a Bulgarian version of Ceaucescu? With this theory she cooperated with Zhivkov to keep Bulgaria going from the frying pan into the fire.

Here is a list of predictions by Vanga. I have included them all. There are some like the "Kursk" that people swear to and some that are debated but I thought it best to include all of them in case anyone wants to do their own research into this fascinating woman-I am going to continue my research and hope to update this post every now and then. I have been aware a long time about Vanga and finally it seemed the "right" time to do an article-however short on her life. Her predictions include: World War II, the coming to power of the communists in Bulgaria in 1944, the date of Stalin's death, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 (in which Bulgarian troops participated), an earthquake in Bulgaria which came to pass in 1985, the Chernobyl disaster, the break-up of the Soviet Union and Boris Yeltsin's electoral victory to become Russia's first freely elected president.

Vanga's after death predictions include the sinking of the Russian submarine "Kursk" that took 118 lives on 12 August 2000, Veselin Topalov's (Bulgarian chess grandmaster) victories in competitions-including one in Sofia in 2009 that cleared his way to become the challenger for the World Chess Championship, the date of her own death and lastly a chilling prediction. Vanga predicted that World War III would begin on November 2010 and last until October 2014. The war will start with conventional weapons, move to nuclear and finally chemical weapons. Let us hope like hell the last one doesn't happen! I was also struck while reading some of her supposed predictions that like Nostradamus, some are very nationalistic and relate to Bulgaria only. Nostradamus was known to be a loyal Frenchman first and many of his predictions relate to France only. There was a famous Nostradamus quatrain about "three brothers" which many commentators automatically took to be the Kennedy brothers-but makes much more sense as a "French" prediction in regards to the monarchy. I am merely conveying this information. I am still studying Vanga, Cayce, Nostradamus and others who claimed to see the future. It is up to each of you to decide what is right and wrong. The only "Vanga" prediction that we have to go by for accuracy is the most horrifying one about WWIII-and I will personally be very happy if that doesn't happen!

The reason I think Auntie Vanga's case is so interesting is that I know her relationship to Todor Zhivkov is "true" to a large extent in that she was sought out by him. Now the reason for this simply could have been Zhivkov trying to have the blessing of a "national treasure" and so on-even to promote tourism to Bulgaria! I am continuuing in my quest to see if she met with Gorbachev and others-and again if this turns out to be true it could be for other reasons. Vanga's house in Petrich in Bulgaria was made into a museum as per her wish after her death. Here are the links HERE and HERE and HERE . The top image is of Vanga during one of her "seeings" and the next is of her house in Petrich. Peace and be well to anyone stopping by! "Kursk" LINK

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

This Caught My Eye For Some Reason!...And New Links!

I saw this in the Sunday edition of the Mesa Tribune:). I also thought this article from 2007 in the Washington Post was fascinating here . If anyone gets a chance to read the article I would love to see what you have to say about it! Peace and be well to anyone stopping by! PS-sorry so slow lately over here-will try to get caught up with everyone very soon!

Here are two great links from Xdell's blog where anyone interested can learn a lot more link
and link !

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The "Wow!" Signal: More Questions Than Answers



Imagine the scene: it is 15 August 1977, Jerry R. Ehman, an astronomer at Ohio State University's "Big Ear" radio telescope is looking carefully over a long sheet of paper. The paper is full of numbers and letters that represent data gathered from the radio telescope, processed by computer and then printed out. To many of us, these numbers and letters would look completely non-sensical. But Jerry Ehman knows just what to look for. He is scanning a printout from the same day, when the "Big Ear" had been pointed towards a tiny section of the constellation Sagittarius. It can be dull and hard work. Scanning thousands of lines listing a radio signals strength at 12 second intervals in 50 frequencies. Background level signals are represented by blanks; stronger ones by numerals or letters. Even though the work is anything but glamorous-the possible payoff would be incredible. The first known alien communication beamed to humanity. Ehman is suddenly startled to see a strong 72 second signal that appears on the printout as 6EQUJ5. Each character represents the strength of the signal over the course of that 12 second period of time.

For example a '5' would mean the signal is five times the background level. When the signal goes above 10 times the background level, it's represented by a capital letter. In their chart the letter 'A' would stand for 10 times the background level and 'U' thirty times. Whatever this was-it was one powerful signal. In fact, Ehman was astonished. The 15 August signal from Sagittarius was the strongest signal the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) had recorded so far. In his amazement, Ehman wrote "Wow!" in the margin and circled the numbers and letters to highlight them. Thirty-two years later, Ehman's discovery, now known as the "Wow!" signal (for obvious reasons) is just as big a mystery as it was in 1977. Could it have been the 'Holy Grail' of SETI-extraterrestrial communication? Could an orbiting satellite have generated the signal? Perhaps it was a natural astronomical event? Today Jerry Ehman himself says, "There's just not enough information to pin it down." This isn't from a lack of trying either. The first step Ehman took back then was to look through the printout to see if the signal had repeated. The telescope had been aimed so that it scanned the same patch of sky every 24 hours.

If the signal was repeating-and then maybe artificial, it would appear on the paper day after day. Sadly it didn't. Apparently this was a one-time only event. Even more interesting, the telescope monitored two sections of the sky, one behind the other and about two-thirds of a degree apart. This means that the signal should have appeared twice; as each viewing angle brought it into view. However, it didn't. Could an extraterrestrial civilization have beamed a short, high-intensity burst at us and then lost all interest? Probably unlikely, if the civilization had been there to begin with. Could the Earth have briefly passed in front of a beam an extraterrestrial civilization had directed somewhere else? A possible explanation is that a local source caused the signal-an artificial satellite, or from some object in our own Solar System. A fact about this signal that may provide some hopeful clues-should it even reappear again is that the signal occupied only a narrow bandwidth centered on 1420 Megahertz. Many astronomers and exobiologists think that any possible alien life out there would broadcast on this frequency because it is the radio signal generated by the most common element in the universe-hydrogen.

This frequency was off-limits to both terrestrial and satellite transmission. Even if a satellite was in violation of this rule, no known satellites were located in that position of the sky. One other idea is that it was the reflection of terrestrial radio waves that had bounced off a piece of space junk. This explanation also falls flat, because once again the frequency was not supposed to be in use on Earth. Calculations were also done that showed such a strong reflection could not have happened if the space junk was tumbling this way and that, which is typically the case. Another item of interest: the sign of a steady rise and fall as it crossed the radio telescopes field of view indicated a source much further away in space. If this was not the case orbital motion would have taken it out of view before the standard 72 second scanning window had ended. An exotic explanation is a phenomenon known as gravitational lensing. This happens when an object of large mass (black hole, galaxy, neutron star,etcetera) lies between Earth and the source of the signal. This intensifies the normal radio emissions of stars. This event could produce a strong enough signal, but it should have repeated a few times-at the very least until the motions of the Earth, Sun, and the star where it originated overcame the lensing effect. The fact of the matter is, that no one to this day has offered a conclusive explanation of the "Wow!" signal, and it has never been detected again, despite astronomers looking for it in the same region of the sky many times since then.

Seth Shostak, senior astronomer at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California says: "Nobody's going to believe a SETI signal you find only once. One possibility is it was ET, and in the meantime he's gone on holiday. The other is that it was some kind of interfererence. We're never going to know." The only event in the history of radio astronomy that comes close to this was the first observation of a pulsar signal in 1967. A pulsar is an extremely small (smaller than a city on earth in diameter) and incredibly dense (a cubic centimeter weighs 1,000 tons!) neutron star which rotates, and like a lighthouse, flashes its beam of energy with an intense narrow beam of radio waves.

A neutron star which becomes a pulsar is created when a star at the end of its life and more massive than the sun is at the 'supergiant' stage of its development. Some of these stars such as Betelgeuse can have diameters of almost one billion kilometers and a brightness of 10,000 of our suns. The outer layers of these stars are not very dense at all and they have a relatively cool atmosphere. Beneath this cool atomosphere the first layer of gas, at about 3 million to 10 million degrees centigrade burns hydrogen and turns it into helium. Below that, helium at over 500 million degrees centigrade is converted into oxygen, carbon and nitrogen. Closer to the core of the star where the temperatures reach over one billion degrees centigrade, sodium, neon, magnesium, sulphur, calcium, silver, nickel and silicon are fused into each other at the progressively higher densities and temperatures. Finally at the dead center of the star atoms of iron are created from the last by-product of nuclear fusion-silicon. Once the supergiant star is at this stage is has just a few days to live. The cause of this is that iron is the dead end of the fusion process. This means that it just builds up in the core and doesn't produce any energy to counteract the force of gravity that tries to compress the star from the time of its birth.

For the last time the core of the star collapses. The state of the material in the core of the star before the final collapse is very hard to imagine. The gas is heated to 10 billion degrees centigrade and the density of this material is more than 1,000 tons per cubic centimeter! Within the atoms, the last of the natural barriers formed by the forces of repulsion fall one by one. Electrons are crushed into the nuclei of atoms, where they combine with protons, which are them immediately converted into neutrons-thus neutron star. The gas with the stars core becomes a fluid of particles, all crushed together with incredible density. There is nowhere in the universe where there is a denser or hotter region than the core of a supergiant star that is imploding. The density of the center reaches 10 to the 15th power or one billion tons per cubic centimeter, and the temperature reaches 150 billion degrees centigrade!

When pulsars were first discovered, many thought that they were extraterrestrial civilizations beaming data out into space. The reason for this was that no natural phenomenon had ever been observed in the heavens which pulsed with such huge amounts of energy in such incredibly short and regular periods. We now know that this is because some pulsars spin up to thousands of times a second. Twenty years after the "Wow!" signal in 1997, astronomers at the Green Bank telescope in West Virginia picked up another signal that seemed to be extraterrestrial in origin. This turned out to be just a run of the mill orbiting satellite. Even though techniques had greatly improved since 1977 it still took sixteen hours to figure out the real source of the signal. Seth Shostak says, "It was a very beneficial false alarm because it showed us what might happen in the case of a real detection. It takes a long time to be sure. And in all that time, the media are very interested. There's no secrecy." Science fiction author Robert Sawyer, whose novel, Rollback, talks about the discovery of a definite alien signal, makes the observation that even though we've been listening for 50 years, that's not a long enough time to answer the question of extraterrestrial communication. Says Sawyer, "I suspect that if we continue for a few more decades, we will either find something that leaves the "Wow!" signal totally forgotten, or we will have to face up to something equally astonishing: that we are alone."

However the question is answered, I cannot imagine the excitement and wonder that Jerry Ehman must have felt for a time in August of 1977! A link to wikipedia's entry on the "Wow!" signal here . The top image is of the original printout that Jerry Ehman was looking over on that night with his writing "Wow!" and highlighting of the actual signal and the second image is of the signal's location in the sky in the contellation of Sagittarius. Peace and be well to anyone stopping by!

Monday, August 3, 2009

"Secret Stories" of Homeless Children Part Four


Still continuing with the Lynda Edwards article from June of 1997 called Myths Over Miami published in the Miami New Times magazine.

"I don't think any more that things happen for some great, good God plan, or for any reason," he says. "And I don't know if any angels are still fighting for us." He pauses and looks dreamily at the twilight sky above the day-care center. "I do think a person can dream the moment of his death. Sometimes I dream that when I die soon, I'll be in some high, great place where people have time to conversate. And even if there's no God or Heaven, it won't be too bad for me there."

Research by Harvard's Robert Coles indicates that children in crisis--with a deathly ill parent or living in poverty--often view God as a kind, empyrean doctor too swamped with emergencies to help. But homeless children are in straits so dire they see God as simply having disappeared. Christianity, Judaism, and Islam embrace the premise that good will triumph over evil in the end; in that respect, shelter tales are more bleakly sophisticated. "One thing I don't believe," says a seven-year old who attends shelter chapels regularly, "is Judgement Day." Not one child could imagine a God with the strength to force evildoers to face some final reckoning. Yet even though they feel that wickedness may prevail, they want to be on the side of the angels.

When seven-year old Maria is asked about the Blue Lady, she pauses. "When grownups talk about her, I think she get all upset," Maria slowly replies. She considers a gamble, then takes a chance and leans forward beaming: "She's a magic lady, nice and pretty and smart! She live in the ocean and comes just to kids."

She first appeared to Maria at the deserted Freedom Tower in downtown Miami, which Maria calls "the pink haunted house." A fierce storm was pounding Miami that night. Other homeless people who had broken in milled about the building's interior, illuminated only by lightning. Her father was drunk. Her mother tried to stop him from eating the family's last food: a box of saltines. "He kept hitting her and the crazy people started laughing. When I try to help her, he hit me here"--Maria points to her forehead. "I tried to sleep so my head and stomach would stop hurting, but they kept hurting." A blast of wind and rain shattered a window. "I was so scared. I pray out loud: Please, God, don't punish me no more!"

An older boy curled up nearby on a scrap of towel tried to soothe her. "Hurricanes ain't from God," he said gently. "It's Blue Lady bringing rain for the flowers." When Maria awoke late in the night, she saw the angel with pale blue skin, blue eyes, and dark hair standing by the broken window. Her arms dripped with pink, gold, and white flowers. "She smiled," Maria says, her dark eyes wide with amazement. "My head was hurting, but she touched it and her hand was cool like ice. She say she's my friend always. That's why she learned me the hard song." The song is complex and strange for such a young child; its theme is the mystery of destiny and will. When Maria heard a church choir sing it, she loved it, but the words were too complicated. "Then the Blue Lady sang it to me," she recalls. "She said it'll help me grow up good, not like daddy."

Maria's voice begins shakily, them becomes more assured: "If you believe within your heart you'll know/that no one can change the path that you must go/Believe what you feel and you'll know you're right because/when love finally comes around, you can say it's yours./Believe you can change what you see!/Believe you can act, not just feel!/You have a brain!/You have a heart!/You have the courage to change your life!/Please believe in yourself as I believe in you!"

As she soars to a finish, Maria suddenly realizes how much that she's revealed to a stranger: "I told the secret story and the Blue Lady isn't mad!" She's awash with relief. "Even if my mom say we sleep in the bus station when we leave the shelter, Blue Lady will find us. She's seen my face."

Shelter children often depict the Blue Lady in their drawings as blasting demons and gangbangers with a pistol. But the secret stories say that she cannot take action unless her real name--which no one knows--is called out. The children accept that. What they count on her for is love, though they fear that abstract love won't be enough to withstand an evil they believe is relentless and real. The evil is like a dark ocean waiting to engulf them, as illustrated by a secret story related by three different girls in separate Miami homeless facilities. It is a story told only by and to homeless girls, and it explains how the dreaded Bloody Mary can invade souls.

Ten-year old Otius, dressed in a pink flowered dress, leads a visitor by the hand away from four small boys who are sitting in a shelter dining room snacking on pizza and fruit juice. "Every girl in the shelters knows if you tell this story to a boy, your best friend will die!" she says with a shiver. When the boys try to sneak up behind her, she refuses to speak until they return to their places.

She begins: "Some girls with no home feel claws scratching under the skin on their arms. Their hand looks like red fire. It's Bloody Mary dragging them in for slaves--to be in gangs, be crackheads. But every 1,000 girls with no home, is a Special One. When Bloody Mary comes, the girl is so smart and brave, a strange thing happens." Bloody Mary disappears, she says, then a pretty, luminous face glows for a moment in the dark. The girl has glimpsed what Bloody Mary looked like before she became wicked. "The Special One," Otius continues, "is somebody Bloody Mary is scared of because she be so good, people watch her for what to do. And if she dies, she will die good."

John Dee & Edward Kelley & the Spirit World: Final Thoughts

The following warnings came from different sessions in November 1583: "You have run astray, you have entered into the houses of idols. I have brought you from fire, but you are entered into flames. And why? Because you defile yourselves with the wickedness of deceivers: Whose images you saw affirmatively, though not verily." (These warnings were transmitted by a voice). "The spirits of darkness are ready for every plae, and can deceive, saying, This is of God. Unto these you have listened...But I am come from God...That you may become wise...And I will be a wall betwixt you, and your imaginations: and betwixt those that have tempted you, and your weakness." (A" bad preacher-like creature," according to Kelley's judgment.) The Sirens are awake and their song is to destruction. I am sent from God, as a messenger to call thee home; for thou dishonoreth God mightily. Behold thou shalt be made contemptible, and become a laughingstock. They honor shall be defeated, and thy posterity spotted with ignominy. Moreover, such as are thy friends shall shake their heads, saying, "What wise man hath thus been overcome? What is he that is become foolish?"

Rather than lurid, fantastical apocalyptic rantings, these warnings fall too close to the truth. For the general public-both Dee's contemporaries and modern day -his "conversations" with angels and spirits did ruin his reputation. Scholars these days (among many other people) dismiss Dee as a deluded crank or would-be magician -or both. This fascinating man who led a very interesting life during historically interesting times is relagated to a footnote or a few paragraphs by most commentators. I believe that in all of Dr. John Dee's meticulous writings there are valid cases of contact with something or some otherworldly beings. Whether any of them were who they or Kelley said them to be-who knows? The fact that Dee chose to work with the obviously unbalanced Kelley for so long says a lot. In his desire to attain results, Dee probably pushed Kelley even more towards the brink of insanity. Dee's longing desire for these results also led to the "illusions" he was warned about in some sessions. The warnings themselves are very interesting in their own right to me.

In a very great sense, these warnings provide some of the strongest evidence for contact with a higher realm. This could have been from the Oversoul (if there is such a thing), creatures that are on higher planes of existence, beings that share our world but in another dimension -or even the epiphany of angels. In this last case these angelic messengers were sent by Divine Mercy to warn Dee of his hubris and folly. I agree with Cherry Gilchrist that Dee was a great man but not a wise one.

And what of the sinking of the Spanish Armada? Many occultists claim that John Dee raised up spells that caused the storms that sank it. I think he may have had some unique talents-but I don't think he had this kind of power! Dee was out of favor with Queen Elizabeth I by 1588 and apparently wasn't aware of the defeat of the Armada until months afterwards. There is a strange entry in one of his 'spiritual diaries' which has only the most tenuous reference to a threat to England from a foreign fleet in the early 1580s. The rumors that have Dee sinking the Armada with magic seem to date from the 17th century, and they can't be used for anything useful, except that they added to Dee's reputation as a magician! A medallion mentioned by some that say has Dee's magical spells on it to defeat the Spanish Armada (or things of that nature) was actually struck in commemoration of the English victory. Instead of even mentioning Dee, this medallion actually credits God with sinking the Armada.

I may return later to do some more about "the original 007" as I find him a fascinating character. This will be all about Dee for awhile as I am working on other things. Thanks again so much for everyone's thoughtful and intelligent comments! Peace and be well to anyone stopping by! The image is a table of some of the "Enochian" or "angelic" letters that these beings supposedly showed to Kelley.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow: The Day Is Done

The day is done, and the darkness
Falls from the wings of Night,
As a feather is wafted downward
From an eagle in his flight.


I see the lights of the village
Gleam through the rain and the mist.
And a feeling of sadness comes o'er me
That my soul cannot resist:


A feeling of sadness and longing,
That is not akin to pain,
And resembles sorrow only
As the mist resembles the rain.


Come read to me some poem,
Some simple and heartfelt lay,
That shall soothe this restless feeling,
And banish the thoughts of day.


Not from the grand old masters,
Not from the bards sublime,
Whose distant footsteps echo
Through the corridors of Time.


For, like the strains of martial music,
Their mighty thoughts suggest
Life's endless toil and endeavor;
And tonight I long for rest.


Read from some humbler poet,
Whose songs gushed from his heart,
As showers from the clouds of summer,
Or tears from the eyelids start;


Who, through long days of labor,
And nights devoid of ease,
Still heard in his soul the music
Of wonderful melodies.


Such songs have power to quiet
The restless pulse of care,
And comes like the benediction
That follows after prayer.


Then read from the treasured volume
The poem of thy choice,
And lend to the rhyme of the poet
The beauty of thy voice.


And the night shall be filled with music,
And the cares, that infest the day,
Shall fold their tents, like the Arabs,
And as silently steal away.


This is one of my mother and I's-me's ? (eyes:) favorite poems. I will also add a link for Mr. Longfellow Here Then I will give a link that goes to some of Stephen Morrissey's wonderful work Here I love both his poems, "Reincarnation" and "The Yoni Rocks." Some day I hope to have money to buy some of his books and benjibopper's work and others I either know or link to at MFM! The image is of the Triangulum Galaxy, also known as Messier 33 (M33). The galaxy is one of our closest galactic neighbors-about three million light-years away. So the light we see today from this galaxy left it almost three million years ago. It is a smaller mass spiral galaxy than either our own Milky Way (est 100 to 400 billion solar masses) or another neighbor even closer and more massive than our own galaxy-the Andromeda Galaxy (est 200 to 1 trillion solar masses)-astronomers think M33 has about 30 to 40 billion solar masses. Small but beautiful-link Here I hope everyone is having a beautiful weekend (and that my links and the poem don't need corrections this time:)-this is turning into quite a project! Peace and be well anyone stopping by!