What Is True Spirituality?
What does True Spirituality mean to you? Just saying it brings to mind a myriad of responses and reactions, some very emotionally charged and most polar opposites of each other. It is said if you want to start an argument then mention religion or politics. I have to agree. However, I propose to you that true spirituality has nothing to do with religion.
I think a big part of the problem is the messed up definition most of us have of what it means. True spirituality has nothing to do with religion or any particular set of beliefs. It is an all-encompassing view of life and not denying that things are more connected than most want to accept. True spirituality carries over into every aspect of your life. It’s not something you have to stir up, pay up or wind up. It becomes as real as the air you breathe, invisible in many ways but so real and vital to you as an individual. True spirituality is something that comes alongside everything you do, every thought you think and everything you see. It becomes a filter through which you view all things on a level that just makes sense.
So, how does it all fit together? How do I decide and define what true spirituality is? Is it up to me to just make something up that sounds all esoteric and mysterious? To find out you have to break down the history of humans and their interaction with one another and their perception of where they came from and the mystery of whether there is more than what our physical senses can perceive.
This blog attempts to take the most objective look at this subject as this writer is able to do. As you read on I request that you just put out of your mind that this blog has anything to do with any particular religion or is trying to convert you to some religion or philosophy in particular. It is, hopefully, a journey of spirit with consideration of whether there even is such a thing. It is this writer’s intention to build bridges not islands.
Can you do that? Are you ready?
WHERE DID IT ALL BEGIN?
By Benjamin ‘Raven’ Pressley
Science and most religious writings agree that this planet started out with plant and animal life long before humans were added into the mix. Science also agrees that humans started with one common ancestor and from that common ancestor sprung all the other human life on this planet through biological reproduction. Science and most religious writings also agree that our common ancestor had its origins in a place some have called the fertile crescent in modern day Africa somewhere in the area of two rivers whose borders have changed often throughout time known as the Tigris and Euphrates. I think a large part of our population on this planet can agree on these origins. Before and after these events is the eternal struggle of who is right. That argument usually is polarized in one of two camps, evolution vs. intelligent design. I refuse to enter the argument of evolution vs. intelligent design in this particular writing. I find modern day evolution to be beyond ludicrous and unscientific for it begins its attempts to explain the origins of this planet and the life thereon with the assumption that it did indeed evolve and stubbornly will not even consider any other possibility. True science is completely objective and is open to all possibilities. I also find most religious explanations of creation equally ludicrous and subjective. The fact of the matter is no human is living today that was there when this planet was created. All we can do at best, if we truly want to understand the origins of this planet is to be open-minded and above all completely objective. We also must ultimately be willing to agree to disagree on any subject that there is no hard, fast, observable, repeatable and verifiable evidence. As far as our survival goes from here forward we must focus more on the present and what we can do to affect a more sustainable future. This writing will attempt to understand and bring unity to that base of knowledge that will benefit us most in the present and the future, at least as far as this writer sees it.
So, why even bring up the origins of life on this planet? I only brought it up to establish that there was a time, ever how brief that time was, that all living things lived in harmony upon this planet. Every molecule of air and water, every rock, tree, plant and every creature finned, two or four legged lived in harmony each contributing to a beautiful sustainable system for all.
So, what happened? It is very clear and undeniable where the fault lies for all the ills this planet has. The fault is the bad choices made by human beings. It was not always so. As long as humans recognized and made choices with consideration and acceptance that they were but one part in a beautiful sustainable system their part was assured to continue and be a compliment to the sustaining of that system. As long as humans continue to deny where the fault lies the healing cannot begin. Let’s face it, when it comes right down to it we are the only living thing on this planet that can fix it. Only humans have the minds and bodies capable of doing what needs to be done. This is mainly due to the fact that humans have made choices that no other living thing is capable of fixing. I think that is the more realistic consideration. The other consideration and possibility is if humans were totally eliminated from this planet the Earth would gradually heal itself and make itself sustainable for all remaining life. So, as a wise Native American once said, “We need the Earth; the Earth does not need us.”
So, is this writing going to be another writing focusing on pollution, conservation, protecting a single rare species in the way of progress, tree hugging sentiment? Absolutely not; I think that any such attempt oversimplifies the problem we face and is just as guilty as those they demonize for in almost all cases there is no consideration for the parties they are attempting to stop. This article is not even about conservation, per se, although that is one very small part of it. This article is more about the world and the system we are living in, the ills of it, how deep the roots go and observations of how we got to where we are and how we can fix it and who and what it will take to fix it. We are all in this together and we all must develop a more universal consciousness. We cannot go back and start over but we certainly cannot ignore the only part of our past when we were all living in a balanced harmony. We must look back to that time and learn from it. We cannot duplicate it but we must completely unselfishly learn from and apply what that community of living things knew that we have forgotten or choose not to learn from or ignore altogether.
What was it that made the earliest ecosystem successful and sustainable? Human, animal and plant lived together in a community that was mutually respectful and beneficial to all. There was no consideration that one species was superior to another or less important. No one ruled. Every human, animal and plant competed to stay alive and thrive using the tools that were given to it to survive and thrive. Every organism down to the most simple one-celled organism to the most complex human thrived in the environment it was given feeding on the food that it needed and defending itself and its young with those defensive capabilities given to it. I use the term ‘enemy’ here not in the sense that humans think of another human as their enemy because that enemy does not please them, i.e. someone hostile usually for selfish reasons including emotional rationalization. I use the term ‘enemy’ in the sense that anything that resists an organism’s reproductivity or is destructive to that organism’s environment or food source, anything that impedes that organism’s livelihood. The one-celled organism is able to secrete fluids into the medium it swims in that are toxic to its enemies and in some cases fire microscopic darts at its enemy. Plants are able to fend off enemies by their smell, toxicity or release painful barbs for the purpose of discouraging one who would threaten their existence. Animals have many defenses with claws, teeth, flight and speed. Humans in early times before they invented weapons and tools were probably the most vulnerable of any creature. They could hide, climb and occasionally outwit the predator that was after them. The human advantage was our brains ultimately that allowed us to outsmart and eventually make the tools and weapons we needed to survive.
The first community of living things or ecosystem as some call it knew they had to live in harmony with one another. It was not some consciousness within all of the creatures in this community that were constantly thinking, “We must conserve this or conserve that for future generations. We must not eat that because brother panther needs it or the four-legged thinking ‘We must not kill too many brother humans’.” No, it was something instilled in us by a higher consciousness, a well thought out design. How could it not be so? For example, certain foods that animals eat are toxic to humans. By learning which foods are ours all have enough to eat. Some creatures thrive in water which is a hostile environment for those who live on land and vice versa. Some crawl, run and walk and some fly. Some can live on craggy places and leap about high above those who would consider them prey, like the mountain goats.
Somewhere in time though this thinking creature called human began to bask in what he perceived as his superiority as we humans became more proficient hunters. After all we had technology. No other creatures on the planet had technology. No one else could wield this power. Sure there are animals that use tools. A chimpanzee uses a stick to retrieve termites from a mound to eat them. A horse can scratch its backside with a stick. An otter can crack the shell of a mollusk to eat it. A vulture drops a stone on an egg to crush it so it can eat its contents and there are probably others that you can name. But what animal ever took that tool they used and fashioned another tool and another tool and on and on; from stone tools to rockets and computers, from bow and arrow to intercontinental ballistic missiles. Yes, humans must be the center of the universe. We wield the sword of power. We must be the purpose of all creation. Everything non-human was made for our pleasure and to serve us. It must be so, so we will crush and subdue anything that does not agree with us. We need not hunt and gather like some animal, we will grow our own food, we will domesticate the animals we eat and use for labor. We will build fences and cities so that humans will never want for anything or be threatened by anything. What the heck, we must be gods. The rest of creation should bow before us for it is our kind that decides what species lives or dies. Never mind the past, let us forget that we were created like everything else, that is just a story, look around you, we have obviously created this world. We are the creators. Pour concrete where there once was grass. Build towers where there once were trees. Process and package our foods so that our children think food originates in our stores. Destroy the rain forests and grow farmland for our genetically modified crops and meat. Continue to subdue and cover over everything not created by human. Praise be to humans. All creation bow before us. We are the new lords of the universe.
Hmmm, so how’s that going for you human? You have more diseases and stress than you have ever had, most of it caused by your own hand. You have religions that say it is OK to rape 12 year old girls until they bleed out and die and say it is OK to kill anyone not in their religion. You destroy rain forests that have the cure to your diseases. You wipe every primitive culture out because they are not like you; never mind they don’t have the problems your society does. You pollute the waters of your planet to the point that it is no longer safe to drink any water in the wild; it must be filtered and bottled to be safe to drink, well, safe enough. You have poverty and starvation rampant on your planet while the elite are overfed, unhealthy and overweight. You have made so many plants and animals extinct that your present and future generations will never know or benefit from them. You have parents abusing and killing their own children. You have children killing their own parents. You have innocents being gunned down in theaters and schools while you seek to pass legislation to take away the weapons the citizen needs to defend themselves because you won’t allow the warrior clan of your people to do the job they should be doing. You fear those whose job it is to protect the innocent because they too are corrupt, abusive and kill the very ones they swore to protect.
Where does it end? When will humanity realize enough is enough, admit who is at fault and admit the system we have created is unsustainable. When will humanity realize they have only created a grand illusion that has to be constantly defended and propped up. One lie is made up to cover for the previous lie. The short answer is that humanity as a whole probably will never own up to their crimes and damage they have done to their fellow human beings and the planet that was meant to be their mother. They will continue to point fingers and blame someone else that is too innocent or weak to do anything about their accusations. Does it have to be this way? No. Is it too late to turn it around? No.
So what do we do about it? What can we do about it? Be sure to tune in for my next blog and I will tell you.
RAVENQUEST is a fantasy fiction series I have been writing for quite some time. It is full of action and adventure, original characters and creatures. I think you will find it very original, honestly. I love fantasy and have read fantasy most of my life. It is one of my favorite genres of reading. I wanted to create a world that was unlike anything I have ever read before. I deliberately did not use your standard unicorns and elves, nothing wrong with those guys but I wanted something original and I think I have achieved that.
The story centers around a couple that meets that are vagabonds and living off the land. They both have left their people to live alone if need be rather than live in the greedy rat race that their civilizations has become. When they meet it is funny and incredible. As they become one they find themselves on a journey together for they both have dreams of being called to a far away land to help. One day they find a sword and a bow in a cave that changes their lives forever and sends them on a quest and purpose beyond anything they ever dreamed possible. They are joined by a family of wolves and a mischievous bobcat who become bonded to them in such a way that makes them one tribe.
At this writing there are six volumes with number seven coming out in December of this year. This is a series you will love. It will make you laugh. It will make you cry. It will have you sitting on the edge of your seat unable to put it down. It is family friendly and exciting for the adult as well as the young reader. RAVENQUEST is more than a story. It is a world like no other, a world as all things should be. It is a message with a philosophy we all can live with. You owe it to yourself to find out more and I am going to make it easy for you. YOU CAN LISTEN TO THE ENTIRE VOLUME ONE FREE OF CHARGE! And be sure to click the RAVENQUEST tab on this site for much more information and to purchase your set today! All books available in paperback and Kindle.
I’m really excited about my series RAVENQUEST. It is an exciting original fantasy/fiction series. Visit the world of Terra Zem… a world of many creatures. For many years there has been an ever-growing darkness and presence since the Zmaj have been gone. The Zmaj are the dragon guardians of Terra Zem. Terra Zem needs a hero. Raven and Skyeyes are but simple people who live off the land at peace with all creation until one day their adventures find them exploring a cave where they find a sword and are given a mysterious ancient Talisman known as the Oraquist that changes their lives forever. Will they become the much needed heroes of Terra Zem? What dangers will they meet along the way? Only one way to find out as you travel with them in this first book of the RAVENQUEST series, HERE BE DRAGONS.