Another Way
    I've been attending a truly interesting and enlightening conference the last few days called "The Language of Spirit."   There have been several notable presenters -- physicists David Peat (Blackfoot Physics) and Amit Goswami (What the Bleep Do We Know?), author David Abram (The Spell of the Sensuous) and James O'Dea, the former president of the Institute of Noetic Sciences, among others.
    But the purpose of the conference is the bringing together of western and Native American ways of knowing about science, consciousness, reality and related topics. The centerpiece is a three-day dialogue among some 20 participants from various backgrounds and countries, from quantum physicists to Aboriginal storytellers.
    The idea is not to debate, but simply to present various viewpoints on a given topic and see if some consensus can be arrived at.
    This year's focus has been on "Space and Place," and what that means from all these perspectives.
    The individual presentations and the group dialogue have prompted  a bunch of deep thoughts and reflections on how I experience my world.
    But first and foremost, the idea has come to me is that if I thought Busting Loose was radical, it's really got nothing on the worldviews of most of the participants.
    I guess where we would diverge is that the participants here, to a person, feel a sense of urgency to solve the world's problems, especially those associated with the environment.
    As I mentioned in a recent post, I don't feel that sense of urgency or even minor interest in most of this, because I've moved into the understanding that everything "out there" is truly made up and illusory. As I change my consciousness, the world around me changes accordingly.
    But as I listen to these passionate and intelligent people I've created, sometimes a shred of doubt begins to creep in. Is this some kind of message for me? Has my understanding and practice of Busting Loose caused me to become too cavalier about the whole concept of the world as illusion?
    I can see sometimes how taking a radical view could be a smokescreen for my apathy, and apathy is not high on the list of things that I want to bring to the world, illusory or not.
    I know that Robert Scheinfeld would say that if taking on a cause truly supports you in Phase 2, and you get fun or enjoyment out of pursuing some solution, then do it. There's nothing wrong with it. Just remember the cause and the solution are both illusions.
    But then I hear an Aboriginal woman talk about her people's sacred relationship to the land, and how that relationship nurtures the people and the land, and I almost feel obligated to wander the deserts of Australia with her on a walkabout.
    I should be concerned about world peace, right?
    The moderator, Leroy LIttle Bear, reminds us that to enter into this type of dialogue, it is necessary to get rid of our "tacit infrastructures" -- the concepts and beliefs that accumulate in us over time -- so that we can be ready to receive new knowledge from new places.
    (I must interject a note here. Leroy helped start these dialogues in 1992, and is one of the wisest and funniest people I know. After a participant related the experience of going to sleep and dreaming that he flew through his bedroom window, Leroy deadpanned, "Was it paneless?")
    This concept of "tacit infrastructures" obviously jibes with Robert's concepts, in that we humans tend to buy into the rules of games that we will never win while playing in the hologram. That's always a good ground for me.
    It seems to me that the divergence is on this question of beliefs, but not in the way you might think. Robert has encapsulated it well in his new book: we're not here to change beliefs, but to exchange them for the Truth. I'm hoping the group will move from simply wanting to change the beliefs of others to getting to the Truth in this dialogue.
    Leroy, who is Blackfoot, also explained how a particular problem might be resolved in a tribal setting. Someone would come to a relative or friend with a particular issue. The relative would present it to the talking circle and the elders would each speak their piece.
    But instead of the circle issuing a decree, the person who brought the problem to the circle would be asked to take the wisdom of the group with him and solve the problem.
    That's pretty much where I am as we enter the second day of dialogue. I'll be listening and learning and coming up with my own solution about just how involved I will be with the issues of the outer world. And if anybody knows of a cheap flight to Australia, let me know.     

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Physicist Amit Goswami of "What the Bleep Do We Know" fame and author of a dozen books will be appearing at this year's Language of Spirit conference next month. He stars in a new documentary, The Quantum Activist, which will precede him here on a double bill with a little 'ol doc I made called "The Language of Spirituality."
The screening will be held Saturday, Aug. 1, 7 p,m; at 800 Bradbury SE, on the University of New Mexico's south campus.  Tickets are $10, available at the door, or by contacting SEED Graduate Institute at 792-2900. Check out our Articles page for an interview with Dr. Goswami.


      Just finished watching the documentary "Leap." I found it quite inspiring, and it's good to know that there are a growing number of people out there that are being exposed to this meme. For those of you who haven't seen the movie, it poses the question, what if our "reality" was really just an illusion, as philosophers and metaphysicians -- and now some quantum physicists -- have propounded? What if everything we sense, think or experience in this "real" world is simply a manifestation of "our" consciousness and no more real than a hologram? In other words, "There is no out there out there." (Sorry for all the quotation marks, but when you question reality this much, you pretty much are living in a state of perpetual quotation marks.)
      For some, me included, this may not seem all that radical a concept. At least not after having been exposed to folks like Robert Scheinfeld (who's in the movie), A Course in Miracles, Adyashanti, Zen and a bit of HIndu philosophy from my friend Pravin. Yet, the movie satisfies because filmmakers Chad Cameron and Isaac Allen don't just stop with the basic premise. They take it to its logical conclusion and really challenge the interviewees ("guides," as the filmmakers call them) to explain what's in front of our lyin'  eyes if it ain't "reality."
      What is perhaps most uplifting is the general sentiment among the guides, that whether our reality is an illusion or not, life is always worth living. In fact, understanding the miracle of this existence can make our lives that much richer, our experiences that much more profound and enjoyable.
      To paraphrase the filmmakers, by the time you finish watching this, you're gonna think the premise is sheer lunacy, somewhat intriguing or absolutely right on. As is true with about everything, your reaction will tell more about you than it does about the movie, and I'm sure the usual army of naysayers will come out to attack it on scientific grounds. Whatever. Tell them to go study the writings of David Bohm and get back to you. That'll shut 'em up for a while.
      For more information, visit their website.
      To order a copy of "Leap," click here.

Starting Over



   Welcome to  my new blog, Another Way. This blog and the accompanying website were inspired by a major life change last year. I finally came to realize, that after 51 years on earth, there had to be another way.  I imagine you're here because you feel the same way.
     I've been fortunate over the years to be able to explore, or at least dabble in, a number of spiritual paths, from A Course in Miracles to Zen Buddhism. I've read countless books on spiritual discovery, personal transformation, quantum physics and metaphysics and other esoteric subjects.  I've made films about subjects like UFO believers and the connections between quantum physics and the Native American cosmology. I don't pretend to be an expert in any of them, and frankly, I don't really pretend to know any more than the average man or woman. But as a lifelong human being, I'm as qualified as anyone to relate my experiences. My hope is that perhaps some of my experience will resonate with you.
     Much of the focus will be on Robert Scheinfeld's "Busting Loose" program, since that has been an integral part of my most recent evolution. But there are plenty of spokes on the wheel, and I hope to talk about more than a few of them.
I believe that everything originates from consciousness, and I don't have much use for affirmations, the Law of Attraction,
traditional religion, or anything that places power outside of us. If you take part in these practices, and are finding fulfillment in doing so, great. It's just not my thing. Needless to say, neither is crystal healing.
     I also hope to hear from you, especially my Phase 2 friends around the world, about what's going on in your lives, what you're creating and how you're having fun.