For more ELYSIUM’S PASSAGE Blog Posts, go to https://digitalbloggers.com/arts-and-entertainment/ep-blog-posts or https://digitalbloggers.com/articles/elysiumspassage
December 1, 2019
JUST BE MY FRIEND
This post is on friendship, and since I've been blessed to have many close friends, there's much I could say on this topic. A number of these go back from when I was just 20 years old, which is very long time ago.
Interestingly, a number of former friends have recently come back into my life as a result of a high school class reunion a couple of years ago. In most cases, it didn't matter what we had been through during the intervening years, we just picked things up where we left off. Most everything had changed in our outward circumstances and appearances, but it was remarkable how little our personalities had changed. That was quite the eye-opener for me.
Even the girls back then who were stuck-up, were still stuck-up... though I wasn't exactly sure why.
One of the things I noticed about these renewed friendships, was there was so much more depth of character to share with each other from our life experiences compared to our teen years. Obviously, the years had added more layers of character to our basic personalities.
But rather than go on philosophizing about friendship, I have included a number of insightful quotes on this topic below:
“A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.”
– Walter Winchell
“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”
– C.S. Lewis
“True friendship comes when the silence between two people is comfortable.”
– David Tyson
“Sweet is the memory of distant friends! Like the mellow rays of the departing sun, it falls tenderly, yet sadly, on the heart.”
– Washington Irving
“There’s not a word yet for old friends who’ve just met.”
– Jim Henson
“A single rose can be my garden… a single friend, my world.”
– Leo Buscaglia
“Don’t make friends who are comfortable to be with. Make friends who will force you to lever yourself up.”
– Thomas J. Watson
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
— Dale Carnegie
“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
“Ultimately the bond of all companionship, whether in marriage or in friendship, is conversation.”
– Oscar Wilde
“A true friend never gets in your way unless you happen to be going down.”
– Arnold H. Glasgow
“I don’t need a friend who changes when I change and who nods when I nod; my shadow does that much better.”
“The real test of friendship is can you literally do nothing with the other person? Can you enjoy those moments of life that are utterly simple?”
– Eugene Kennedy
“It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.”
– Friedrich Nietzsche
“Friendship is the hardest thing in the world to explain. It’s not something you learn in school. But if you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven’t learned anything.”
– Muhammad Ali
“Growing apart doesn’t change the fact that for a long time we grew side by side; our roots will always be tangled. I’m glad for that.”
– Ally Condie
“One’s friends are that part of the human race with which one can be human.”
– George Santayana
Be slow to fall into friendship; but when thou art in, continue firm & constant.”’
“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”
– Marcel Proust
December 7, 2019
FEELING UP, NOT DOWN
Good advice from Joan Rivers!
Its easy enough to get upset, since there seems to be so many reasons for it, such as when bull riding. It happens all the time. The question, however, is whether we’re going to remain wallowing in our ‘poor me’ victimhood, hoping someone might feel sorry for us.
Probably they won’t, since everyone already has enough of their own 'sensitivities' to deal with without having to take on ours too.
So, rather than remaining upset, we move on by doing something worthwhile that will get us over our negative feelings. There is no dignity nattering on about our perceived upsets and misfortunes.
There is, however, a great deal of dignity in getting over it by being resilient. Everyone admires someone who bounces back from their problems. Here are some quotes to inspire us.
"The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." Nelson Mandela
"Life doesn't get easier or more forgiving; we get stronger and more resilient." Dr Steve Maraboli
"When we tackle obstacles, we find hidden reserves of courage and resilience we did not know we had. And it is only when we are faced with failure do we realize that these resources were always there within us. We only need to find them and move on with our lives." A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
"In order to succeed, people need a sense of self-efficacy, to struggle together with resilience to meet the inevitable obstacles and inequities of life." Albert Bandura
"Resilience isn't a single skill. It's a variety of skills and coping mechanisms. To bounce back from bumps in the road as well as failures, you should focus on emphasizing the positive." Jean Chatzky
"Someone said adversity builds character, but someone else said adversity reveals character. I'm pleasantly surprised with my resilience. I persevere, and not just blindly. I take the best, get rid of the rest, and move on, realizing that you can make a choice to take the good." Brooke Shields
"I marvel at the resilience of the Jewish people. Their best characteristic is their desire to remember. No other people have such an obsession with memory." Elie Wiesel
"Resilience is knowing that you are the only one that has the power and the responsibility to pick yourself up." Mary Holloway
"She stood in the storm and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails." Elizabeth Edwards
"Resilience is accepting your new reality, even if it's less good than the one you had before. You can fight it, you can do nothing but scream about what you've lost, or you can accept that and try to put together something that's good." Elizabeth Edwards
"No matter how much falls on us, we keep plowing ahead. That's the only way to keep the roads clear." Greg Kincaid
"We will either find a way, or make one." Anibal Barca
December 15, 2019
ALL AND NOTHINGNESS: A VOICE IN THE NIGHT
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." Genesis 1-2 (KJV)
Even since a 'voice' came to me in the night, I’ve been intrigued with the concept of all that is, and its counterpart, "and the earth was without form, and void." In other words... nothing. (Btw, I explain the 'voice in the night' further down this article.)
Philosophically, this is an interesting topic, in fact, about as profound as you can get, addressed by physicists, philosophers and mystics of all traditions through the ages.
But, really, how are we, as mere mortals with mortgages, families and pets, expected to understand about the ontological foundations of reality. I'm not sure what it takes, apart from some good peyote, to get to the bottom of what all this means... the implicate void that holds the latency of all that is or could be when manifested in explicate reality. As if infinity could have a bottom.
You might ask, what implications, philosophical or practical, this might have on how we view life? If nothing else, I suppose it could help broaden our minds and concept of God as the Source of all that is or could be as well as pure potentiality in the void. Heady stuff to consider. The kind of thing Zen Masters put you through.
And, what might this mean about an afterlife? If you wish to know everything about the afterlife, read the Elysium's Passage novel series. Or, at least you'll learn what my speculations are on the subject.
If you think about all these concerns for long enough, you could end up 'enlightened'... or you could end up going nuts. Perhaps both. Questions about what makes reality real are as fathomless as the void in Genesis.
There are several passages on this topic in A Course in Miracles and A Course of Love, juxtaposing the meaning of 'all and nothingness'. One quote that I like is:
"In order to experience the truth, you must move into a state that is real. 'Nothing' is as real as 'Everything' and is what some of you have experienced as a ‘dark night of the soul.’ To realize that you reside in nothingness is but the counterpart of realizing that there is an all to which you belong."
Book 2, Chapter 5, A Course of Love, Mari Perron
So why am I talking about all this? Too much time on my hands? No, that’s not it. So, let me tell you what got me going on this.
Actually, it's a rather strange story, even spooky, like something out of 'The Twilight Zone.'
But rather than tell you directly, I’ll quote my friend James, the hero in Elysium’s Passage. As it happens, he had the same experience as me. In fact, it was identical… same place, same time of year, except I was sleeping in my van and he was sleeping under the stars. One of those strange coincidences, I guess.
So, here’s what he says in Elysium's Passage: The Summit. (chapter 8)
‘A most extraordinary event occurred to me that I will never forget,’ I said. ‘It was in the early autumn when I was camping in a tranquil alpine meadow not far from the mountain resort of Banff.
‘In the middle of the night, as I was soundly sleeping under the stars, a voice in the air woke me, saying just one word: “Nothingness.” Then again, over a period of a few minutes, I heard this voice repeating this same word two more times. It was clear as a bell, so by the last time, I was fully awake and startled. ‘“Who is this… and what does this mean?”’ I asked. I didn’t receive an answer then, nor have I since.
‘It was some time before I was able to fall asleep again, wondering what that was, and why it was speaking to me. This was very strange; I thought, since I'm not even remotely psychic.
‘For some time, I continued to think about this encounter, until I gradually put the memory out of my mind. Since my profession trained me to be sceptical of any phenomena that can't be rationally explained, I sought to find a logical explanation for this paranormal experience. But I never was able to explain it. Finally, I just rationalized it as being some neurological quirk in my brain triggered by my Rocky Mountain high.’
And there you have it. That’s precisely what happened to me about eight years ago, near Cascade Mountain in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada. I remember how I was on a bit of a ‘Rocky Mountain High' that night, anticipating my next day of hiking into the Plain of the Six Glaciers.
So before climbing into my van to sleep, I strolled around in the meadow in the bright moonlight of that beautiful fall night, praying a prayer of thanksgiving. I also asked to have a meaningful day where I might feel the divine presence of being touched by heaven. Perhaps I anticipated seeing some exotic ascended mountain spirit or master on the trail the next day, I don’t know. I just felt I was in the zone for something to happen and wanted it to be special.
Well, as it turned out, it seems someone heard me because I heard them… loud and clear in the middle of the night… ‘nothingness,’ Not just once, but three times over within a few minutes. It woke me up, not as a voice in my head, but as an audible voice I can’t describe, except it was ‘different.’
It took about an hour for me to fall asleep again since I felt ‘giddy’ with this vocal ‘visitation.’ Later that day I had an extraordinary time hiking and climbing. I also felt something special had happened to me earlier but remained mystified by what it might mean. Now, after all these years, I still remain mystified at what happened, even as I continue to wrestle with its meaning.
As you can tell, it seems James has also been trying to sort this out. You may read excerpts on what James has to say about this on the blog post at: https://digitalbloggers.com/arts-and-entertainment/all-and-nothing
December 28 2019
Generally, we expect to feel happy during the Christmas season. But the festive spirit can rapidly wane into something less than festive when we get caught up making innumerable preparations to fulfil everyone’s expectations, including our own. Very soon, things feel more stressful than happy.
For children, Christmas is often a happy time when everything in the air feels special with all the lights, trees, festivals, concerts, candy, relatives and presents under the tree. What if we, as adults, could recapture this same spirit, just as we did as children? If we think we can’t, then why not? Obviously, it’s difficult to answer this question in just a few paragraphs.
A recent survey in North America revealed that the average adult lives with negative emotions 70% of the time. I hope that’s not true, but it’s probably not far off. So, why do we go living in a negative funk. What happened to the magic, celebration, gratitude, joy, love, peace and everything that made us feel happy... and how do we get it back? Perhaps we need to understand who and what we are before we speculate on what makes us happy.
I think, first of all, it's important to recognize that we are, in essence, spiritual beings living our lives as material beings under the guidance of a reactive ego-self. But we are far more than the false ego-self that presumes to be us. If we believe that's all we are, we deny our birthright to happiness. Ideally, joy should be our true default state of existence, but unfortunately, it seldom is. Some religions call this our fall from grace.
If that's the case or something perhaps like it, we need to find a way to move our frequency up the spectrum from unhappiness to happiness, unconsciousness to consciousness, from egoic illusions to the divine light we are created to be.
One way we can tap into the magical wonderment of who and what we are is to be present. As Lao Tzu stated, if we hear and see as children, we will be wise because we are in the zone to receive grace and happiness. Alberta Einstein knew that which is why he was often playful, enjoying his bike rides when not watching soap bubbles pop while bathing. (When he said, he had his best scientific epiphanies). It might be as simple as that; living in constant gratitude for the simple things in life.
What’s not so simple is opening our heart and mind to the still peace that allows for happiness. It should be, but it's not. To rediscover our childhood joy, we must learn to live in the flow of the moment, rather than ensnared by the egoic worries of the future and regrets of the past.
A time of meditation is essential to remove all the noise and fear looping through the mind by laying it aside for a few minutes to relax and sink into the sweet Presence of gratitude. This is the divine You, wherein lies peace. Some call it the Kingdom of God within. As such, it's also your Kingdom. Can you access it? Of course, but it may be a challenge at first. It can be a steep slope when you’re out of practice. Meditation takes practice, discipline and time to master. That’s because the ego will do all it can to run interference.
But once you make the divine connection with your Self, you will emerge aware, giving mindful attention to your whole life as well as others and all of nature. If you give loads of love to yourself, you will have lots to give everyone and everything in the world... the world you once feared. As it is said, "Perfect love casts out fear."
There's also something else to this. Recognize that you don't need to take anything from anyone when you understand you are only able to receive when you give. That’s the law of love. So, why would you even want to take? There's a big difference... taking doesn't bring happiness… but giving does. In this spirit, giving and receiving become the same as a seamless cycle of reciprocity.
That's how the magic is restored. No fear, no lack, no judgment, no taking... only sharing and receiving in love.
Be aware, however, you have an enemy. We all do, wherever we find ourselves on the spectrum of consciousness. Until we regain control, it will attempt to take back its unhappy territory.
As Pogo said: “I have seen the enemy, and the enemy is us.” Yet it's not us, but the enemy within us. It's the ego programme we default to when we're not aware of what's going on within. It fears, takes, envies, judges and hates... a selfish drive to be unfaithful, unappreciative, full of hubris, bringing everything nasty into our lives. It's not based in wholeness, but in separation, refusing to recognize we are all bound and united in One divine love.
The good news is that the ego is not real. It exists only as a programme in our mind... a necessary part of the adolescence/adulthood experience that challenges us to grow. Through it, we find what we don't want so we might one day come to freely choose what we do want. After having a (hopefully) happy childhood, the ego has a way of kicking in unless we learn how not to identify with it. For example, if we suffer enough we might finally twig on to how we're making unhappy choices.
That’s not to say we don’t need an ego at times. Obviously, it can come in handy as a survival mechanism. But that's when we use the ego, rather than it using us... which it will every time it has the chance, even when we consider ourselves ‘enlightened.’
So, how to do we dislodge this insane programme from corrupting the happiness of our inner self? Again, we must dial things down by finding ourselves in the ‘present.’ It's in meditation that we find our divine Self. As it is stated, "Be silent, and know that I am God." That’s the gate where we become reacquainted with our true Self, our genuine state of our being when we entered this world.
Once we silently enter into this inner sanctum of peace, we naturally access the divine essence of our heart. It’s the portal to our happiness and all we are designed to be. The mind must surrender because, on its own, it's always confused, easily co-opted by the insane delusions of the ego which attempts to be happy by pursuing unhappiness. (Like I said, its pretty insane).
However, when we subordinate our unhinged mind to the guidance of our divine heart, we are on our way to sustained happiness. Yet we must remain vigilant to remain in this state by discerning the voice in the head (ego) from the divine voice of the heart.
For more on the ego, I wrote a post on this blog called, Two Faces: The Ego Mask and You: https://digitalbloggers.com/arts-and-entertainment/two-faces
I wish everyone a HAPPY, HAPPY 2020 New Year.
SUMMARY OF ELYSIUM'S PASSAGE: THE SUMMIT
This the first in a series of five Elysium narrations regarding a young British philosopher named James Phillips who finds himself living in an altered state of reality while still remaining on earth.
After experiencing a near fatal fall while climbing to the summit of a remote mountain in the Andes, James awakens in a new dimension. He soon encounters two mysterious beings who provide him with a very different perspective on the nature of his existence. Over the next year, before his body recovers from the coma, he is challenged to re-examine his understanding about life’s meaning and purpose far beyond anything he previously believed, or could believe.
An engaging and sometime surreal adventure with intimations of impending romance, the narrative explores the most important questions about life, death, reality and our ultimate destiny.
The Plains of Elysium (Champs-Élysées) was described by Homer, Hesiod, Virgil and many other poets as the paradisiac afterlife realm reserved for heroes. As the title suggests, this is about a journey through a passage that leads towards Elysium’s exciting realm of existence.
To read a sample press review at: https://www.prweb.com/releases/2018/05/prweb15515775.htm
(ATTEMPTED) INTRODUCTION TO THE SERIES
ELYSIUM'S PASSAGE: READER REVIEWS
The following comments are excerpts from among the first readers including a number of Amazon five star reviews. To read the full reviews, go to READER REVIEWS on www.elysiumspassage.com or directly at https://digitalbloggers.com/arts-and-entertainment/reader-reviews
"A delightful mix of fantasy, reality, conjecture and humour; Mr. Meyers draws the reader into the story with a gentle narrative that captures imagination, leaving one anxious to get to the next page drawing you into his exceptional world.”
"Quietly, gently, and without imposition, the Author unfolds the pages, creating an intricate, interlocking bridge spanning the chasm between mind and heart. Renewing, refreshing, restoring. In my bereavement, it was vigil and light…"
“Excellently written with an exceedingly deep understanding of this world and the next. The characters are very well written and engaging. I can't wait to complete this book!"
“Takes the reader on both a philosophical and spiritual journey, a journey that at times is both disquieting and tranquil. James, a British Philosopher can be irreverent and caustic, traits that should have left me cringing, but instead made me laugh out loud. Elysium’s Passage is a fun, enlightening and remarkable book.”
“This is a masterful fantasy, becoming a real possibility, as the reader is drawn into the story. The Summit leaves you anxious for the next book in the series, yet also leaves you totally satisfied with the world you have just visited. Genius! An exciting, yet calming, experience that is not to be missed."
"There was hardly a page on which I did not find at least one sentence worthy of hi-lighting for future reference. In addition, I thoroughly enjoyed the main character, James, whose personality and passionate verbal exchanges with the other characters, kept me coming back for more. I am reading the book for a second time while I wait for the next one in this series to be made available."
“N.G. Meyers has clearly put a great deal of research and thought into what the afterlife may look like and I like his perspective. It’s an altogether welcoming and exciting vision. The book gives one a great deal to think about and a reassuring confidence that the end of our lives is truly the beginning of life in the next. I highly recommend it."
"I am really enjoying your book, it’s fantastic! It is so incredible and diversified that I can’t really explain it to other people, so what I say is just read this book. Thank you so much for the blessings that you’ve given the world!"
“The humour interjected into a serious discussion makes me laugh out loud. Totally unexpected....l may be in the presence of at least a master, if not a genius. A fair ride into reality... seeking that which is unseen, yet absolutely real.”
“An engaging story of adventure embracing man's deepest desire to search for meaning and purpose, N.G. Meyers takes the reader on an adventurous thought-provoking journey. This book has substance. It is a perfect blend of adventure and fantasy combined with spiritual philosophy. It ignited my imagination. The author magically weaves a good story laced with wit and humour together with deep philosophical wisdom. This book has it all!”
“An evolution in thought is triggered by many fresh philosophical themes which could inspire readers to re-think their reality and former ideologies that have dictated their lives… the author fires readers’ imaginations to view what could be possible when spirit vacates the body.”
“This is the book spiritual seekers have been waiting for. For me, it granted a great read as well as increased inspiration to live every day with a heightened sense of purpose. I highly recommend it.
“The Summit is capable of hooking readers and luring them to search for Book 2 to discover more about Dr. Philip’s surreal trek into the mysterious unknown universe. This thick book is well worth the read and to share…”
“Mind-blowing statements and speculation (‘…everyone is a non-physical thought form conceived in the Mind of God, preserved for all eternity because God’s thoughts never die…’). Many will find Meyers’ journey up the Mountain intriguing—and possibly even life-changing.” (BLUEINK REVIEW)
“In its effort to grapple with fundamental questions about the meaning of life, it raises questions that have echoed throughout the ages, including about where we come from, where we are going, who we are.” (CLARION REVIEW)
For more reviews, go to https://digitalbloggers.com/arts-and-entertainment/reader-reviews
PENDING PUBLICATIONS IN THE SERIES
The Summit, is now available for purchase. With the exception of the last novel, the other three havebeen written but still require more editing before publication.
The following titles in the Elysium's Passage series are projected to be released as follows:
THE SUMMIT available
SURREAL ADVENTURES spring 2019
MYSTICAL ROMANCE fall 2019
HE ELIXIR spring 2020
THE RETURN sometime in 2021/22
CONTACT INFORMATION & SOCIAL MEDIA SITES
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/neil.meyers.1 or www.facebook.com/elysiumspassage/
TWITTER My posts can be viewed at: https://twitter.com/Neil1113
YOUTUBE: YouTube: Elysium Passage - YouTube
Elysium's Passage Channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXpzFH6VNMQLOtqOK2SrXpg
For more blog postings click: https://digitalbloggers.com/articles/elysiumspassage
AMAZON: Elysium's Passage: The Summit and is now available www.amazon.com