Posted by: bkivey | 9 March 2012

Free Your Mind

While wandering around the Web a few days ago, I came across this:

Mirrors are one of the most utilized cures for Feng Shui ailments because they are so versatile.  Mirrors can be used to reflect and attract energy. They are also used to bring things together.

The Ba-Qua  Mirror is an eight sided mirror.  Each side represents an aspect or lifestation.  The Ba-Qua Mirror shown below is unique in that is has been programmed by a Feng Shui Master  with ancient Tibetan symbols to bring harmony and abundance to all of your life situations and protection to your home by pulling in all positive good luck “Chi” and reflecting the “Sha” or negative “Chi” away. When you open your front door it creates a vortex drawing in all of the “Sha” energy from outside into your home.  When this mirror is placed outside your front door the “Sha” energy is transmuted into “Chi” before it enters your home.  This is the only Ba-Qua mirror in the marketplace that will do this.

By  Candace Czarny Copyright © 2000-2005

I’ve heard of Feng Shui, and my knowledge is about average for people that don’t listen to Loreena Mckennitt: you arrange furnishings to accentuate positive energy, and diminish negative energy. And like most technically oriented people, I’d dismissed it as so much New Age pseudoscientific claptrap.

But rather than dismiss this website out-of-hand, it triggered a memory of a book (Think and Grow Rich) I read last year, in which the author spends considerable time on two points:

  • The subconscious mind is very powerful, and internalizes one’s true thoughts about oneself. It then directs one’s actions to fulfill those thoughts.
  • E=mc^2 isn’t just for physicists. Matter = energy and vice-versa. Everything that wasn’t formed in the natural world started out as an electrical potential in someone’s brain. Everything. Humans take that energy and turn it into matter. We literally make something out of almost nothing.

This line of thought caused me to recall a book that I’ve read a couple of times, The Dancing Wu Li Masters, where I discovered that Eastern and Western philosophy are two sides of the same coin. So I reflected on what I knew of mysticism in general, and the mirror in particular, in light of what I considered credible information from other sources.

I imagine that practitioners of mysticism are accustomed to a couple of reactions if they venture their interest in a mixed crowd: polite interest (So, you use crystals?) or outright skepticism (You use crystals, really?). I suspect that a lot of the reason for these reactions is that practitioners tend to equate the tools with the process. The physical objects: crystals, mirrors, furniture arrangement, what have you, are the talismans, and have no inherent properties themselves.

This concept was illustrated when Moses came down from the mount and handed down the law of God to the Jews. The First Commandment: Thou shalt have no other gods before me, is often interpreted to mean that polytheism was verboten. I would suggest that an equally valid interpretation would be an admonishment to reserve the imputation of spiritual power to God. Christ later expanded on the theme by teaching that the individual had a personal relationship with God. The symbols of the Christian church: the cross, the statues of the Virgin, the bones of the saints, even the Bible, are mere cynosures for what we now call the subconscious.

The problems start when the group or individual believe that the object is the process. This creates conflict with those who don’t happen to share that belief, and puts severe constraints on the potential benefits of whatever practice the individual is engaged in. If one believes in God, then to say that a particular object is inherently divine is to diminish God. The same is true for any other belief system oriented toward improving oneself. As the Beatles once noted “You better free your mind instead.”

No carpenter would credit their hammer with building a house, nor would the mathematician credit their pencil with an elegant proof. The tools are not the process. If someone wants to engage in a practice that gives focus and expression to the positive aspects and breathtaking power of the human mind, I would encourage it. We could certainly use more of that.

Notes on the Books

  • Think and Grow Rich – I’m not a fan of self-help books, because most of the ones I’ve seen seem to consist of generalized aphorisms written in a feel-good kindergarten style. There are exceptions, How to Win Friends and Influence People comes to mind. Think and Grow Rich is not your typical self-help book. I only read this book because a fairly successful person for whom I’ve done work recommended it. He described the book as ‘life changing’, and that turns out to be the most common way people refer to it. You probably won’t get very far into it before you realize that this is a book you should own. I recommend reading it once all the way through, and then going back and studying it. It will make a difference.
  • The Dancing Wu Li Masters – This book is designed to introduce the layman to quantum physics in an accessible manner, and it does an excellent job of that. It does an equally good job of illustrating the differences and similarities between Eastern and Western philosophy in a way that Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance strives for but doesn’t quite achieve. Even if you’re a quantum physicist, you’ll probably see the world with new eyes after reading this.

Enough with Winter, Already

Like most of the rest of the country, we’ve had a fairly mild winter. I live in a mild climate anyway, but we haven’t had many storms and not really that much rain. And also like most of the country, it turns out that winter isn’t leaving gently. I’ve only lived in the Willamette Valley for 12 years, but I’ve never seen it snow after January.

Well, we had snow on 29 February/1 March, and again on 5 March. Just a dusting, but the fact that it snowed at all was unusual. Now the weather mavens are calling for snow in the surrounding hills on the 11th. On the other hand, we reached our highest temperature since November yesterday, so there’s hope.

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