Calm mind – How to find it in daily life?

calmI was on holiday in the French Vendėe looking for peace and calm. The family had caught the ferry and located the camp site. And now on a lovely day without a cloud in the sky, I shouldn’t have had a care in the world. My daughter passed by and said “Oh Dad, you look relaxed”.

Outwardly I probably did – she’s not used to seeing me lazing in shorts and tee shirt. But inwardly, I was still bothered about not finding the best shady spot away from the hot sun. I was focusing on other minor inconveniences, such as sand in the tent, the grandchildren squabbling in the background, and not immediately finding that wretched bottle opener for a refreshing bottle of beer.

I know that finding inner calm should be less difficult when you are on holiday. But how do we achieve this in ordinary life at home and at work? How does one find peace and calm in times of bother and responsibility?

Mindfulness and calm

Therapists, as well as spiritual teachers, all say to experience a state of emotional calm one must be in a receptive state and this means learning a little self-discipline. So I try to take an attitude of mindfulness: focusing my awareness on the present moment, while calmly observing my feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations. This discipline enables one to take an emotional step back from what is going on around oneself.

For me it also means trying to be receptive to what I believe to be an available in-flowing spirit of calm and contentment. I’ve discovered that this level of consciousness replaces thoughts that dwell on minor irritants, it raises the mind above whims that would otherwise comes flitting into the head, and it prevents falling for each sense of frustration.

Calm and the Divine-within

I happen to believe that quietening the mind to all the things of self and the world can be hard. A higher awareness is easy to miss when I am preoccupied with the things of the material side of life and self-centred cares.

I find it helpful to direct my thought to what I’ve learned to term ‘the Divine within’, and to listen carefully to its inner voice.

I’m reminded of the Old Testament story of the child Samuel who was lying down at night in the Temple. He heard a voice calling his name. The narrator tells us that the boy, not knowing God, mistakenly supposed it was Eli the priest who had spoken. Only when he was told to direct his thoughts to the Lord did Samuel respond:

“Speak, for your servant is listening”. (1 Samuel 3:3-10)

Listening to this inner voice might be said to amount to prayer. Yet, when doing so, to all appearances, one is merely in a reflective mood quietly going about one’s business. This prayerful state of mind is allowing the universal spirit of love as the ‘Divine within’ to lift one from an ego level of mind to a spiritual one.

A human picture of the Divine

Everyone has some sort of idea of God. Mine came from when I was a boy. Then, every night my mother would tuck me in, and say the Lord’s Prayer with me, before kissing me good night and turning off the light. And, as a teenager and later, I would silently rehearse those few sentences alone when going to sleep. And as a consequence feeling the peaceful presence of my idea of the Lord Jesus Christ.

This was and is an impression of a very personal deity. Not just a cosmic powerhouse but an essentially humane entity. Not a punitive harsh idea of God but rather a compassionate figure – who I see as the true source of humane love. One with whom I can take my troubles and feel comfort, encouragement, and guidance.  This is a personal image of the Divine with whom one can have a relationship.

Conclusion about finding calm

Many years later I find that I do lose my way and sometimes forget to keep up the inner conversation.  But I have learned that when I re-direct my attention away from immediate concerns and focus on this Christ-within – a spirit who is present within me but at the same time coming from beyond myself – I can directly experience calm.

I would say that to really know this Divine presence is not just to possess a memory about it. Nor is it to just have some level of enlightened thought. Neither is it to simply have a strong spiritual belief. I feel to truly know the ‘Divine within’ means to base one’ life on this presence and be transformed.

Copyright 2016 Stephen Russell-Lacy
Author of  Heart, Head & Hands  Swedenborg’s perspective on emotional problems

http://www.spiritualquestions.org.uk/

Posted on 5th September 2016 Categories Consciousness, Latest post, Mystical experience Tags , , , , , ,

Does prayer impact healing?

 

Does prayer impact healing

“I’m going in for an operation; pray for me.” “My mother is sick and they are not sure if she’s going to pull through. Would you please pray for her?”

What could be more natural than to ask for help from a loving God when we or someone we care for is in need, and especially when we we’d like to have some reassurance that we are not alone? It is frightening to face a threat to our health, and perhaps even more so to watch someone we love slide slowly downhill. So people reach out to the Lord, the one who can make a difference when no one else can. And we ask others to do so.

But does it do any good? It may make you feel better, but is it really a pain killer that simply numbs you to reality? Surely the Lord is doing all that can possibly be done for that person. How would the prayers of one human being sway the God of the universe to give someone more healing power, or more courage to pull through a hard healing process?

I’m going to assume that you believe that praying for others is a good idea. After all, in the Lord’s prayer we ask for all of us to receive blessings – “give us this day our daily bread … lead us not into temptation.” And the Lord tells us to pray for those who spitefully use us and persecute us (Matt 5:44). In New Church teaching that prayer means that we should “intercede” for them, meaning that we should seek to stand between them and the harm that is coming to them. (Apocalypse Explained # 644:23). Imagine a parent willing to stand in harm’s way to protect a child and you are picturing what interceding means. That’s a pretty clear message to pray for others, especially in their times of need.

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But what can we pray for? We know we can pray for spiritual well being; that’s obvious, and should be the main thing we pray for. The Lord is interested in things that last. Can we also pray for a new car? For a solution to a health crisis?

I would say that a prayer is as good as the intention of the person asking it. If you have a sincere desire for something good, your spirit will be open to the Lord’s purposes.

One way to ensure that we are open to the Lord’s way of doing things is to do what He did while on earth. When He was in the Garden of Gethsemane He prayed, “Father if it is possible let this cup pass from Me. Nevertheless, not as I will but as You will” (Matthew 26:39). This, for me is the best answer. Pray for almost anything, but when you are done, turn it over to the Lord, telling Him, in so many words, that you trust His leading and providence.

Here’s a good reason to pray for people when they are in need: it works. Look at this famous study about prayer for others done by Randy Byrd: “In 1988, as a cardiologist at the UCSF Medical Center, his double-blind study of 393 cardiac patients showed that those prayed for by Christian prayer groups used in the study were five times less likely to require antibiotics, three times less likely to develop pulmonary edema, and, compared with the control group, fewer prayed-for patients died.”

The Christians in this study were simply given the first name and initial of the last name. They did not know the people, nor did any of the hospital workers know that the study was occurring. A similar study was carried out by Zvi Bentwich at Kaplan Hospital in Rehovor, Israel. In this study patients were not prayed for, but were given “healing intention” (meaning well-wishes) by volunteers.

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One interesting aspect of the research done of the effectiveness of prayer is that non-directed prayer – prayer that is simply opening ourselves up to the Lord without any goal in mind – seems to be somewhat more effective than directed prayer. That is one of the reasons why it is so important to end our prayers, as the Lord did, with “nevertheless, not as I will but as You will.”

People in the medical profession sometimes say, “God heals; the doctor sends the bill.” This is obviously true. Think about it this way: If you think of someone with love, your spirit is touching that person’s. If you pray, your spirit is open to the Lord’s presence in an unusually heightened way. If you pray for someone else, you share a bit of that connection with the Lord with that other person. If in some small way that presence of the Lord could help, it would be worth doing.

Prayer, in the end, is speaking with God. Its real aim is to change ourselves. It is turning to the source of life and hope. Whenever something that we value is threatened, we will benefit from turning to Him. His purposes are higher than ours and He will not always answer us in ways that we might like, but He will answer us. Our job it to turn to Him daily and especially when we are in need. And if we cultivate patterns of asking for His help we open ourselves up to the best chance of receiving the gifts He has to offer.

https://newchurch.org/

DAILY INSPIRATION

“The more closely you are connected to the Lord, the more distinctly you appear to yourself to be your own person, and yet the more clearly you recognize that you are the Lord’s.”

Divine Providence 42

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The Magical Power of Prayer

Swedenborg Foundation

By Jeremy Simons

It is not hard to spot the flaw in the idea of intercessory prayer.

God is going through his day, making plans, running the universe. Suddenly, he receives a message. Someone is praying, asking for his help. He hears the prayer, decides the petitioner has a good case, and makes the requested change. Or maybe he just ignores it.

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So what is the flaw in this scenario? Well, if God knows everything, then a prayer tells him nothing that he doesn’t know already. Would he really change the course of events based on a request, as if he did not already understand the situation? Swedenborg says no. That is not the way that it works. The omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent God never changes. He never changes his mind. He never reverses direction.

Since no one can influence God, such prayer is pointless.

In Swedenborg’s system, however, prayer is not pointless. It just isn’t about influencing God.

Regarded in itself, praying is talking with God, while taking an inward view of the things we are praying about. In answer we receive a similar stream of speech into the perceptions or thoughts of our mind, so that our inner depths open up to God, in a way. The experience varies, depending on our mood and the nature of the subject we are praying about. If we pray from love and faith and focus on or seek only what is heavenly and spiritual, something resembling a revelation emerges while we pray. It discloses itself in our emotions in the form of hope, comfort, or an inward stirring of joy. (Secrets of Heaven §2535)

The point of prayer here is not to influence God. The point is “hope, comfort, or an inward stirring of joy.” The way that this works is that “our inner depths open up to God” (Secrets of Heaven §2535). In this setting, God is always the same; it is we who change. Prayer plays a role in this. But there is more to it. True prayer entails a person’s whole life.

Truths with [a person] are what pray, and [a person] is continually in such prayers when he lives according to truths. (Apocalypse Explained §493:3)

And the essence of prayer is that God’s will be done.

When prayer has a divine origin, it always contains the thought and belief that the Lord alone knows whether the object of the prayer is useful or not. The person praying therefore submits the hearing of the prayer to the Lord and immediately adds the plea, “Lord, let your will be done, not mine,” in keeping with the Lord’s words during his heaviest trial, in Gethsemane (Matthew 26:39, 42, 44)(Secrets of Heaven §8179)

The message is that prayer is not just a ritual, an aspect of our devotional life, but is key to a person’s whole life.

This may seem to take the magic out of prayer. But in Swedenborg’s system, there is something else that puts the magic right back in.[1]

There are those who think they deserve heaven because of their earnest prayers, and yet who pray, not for others, much less for all, but for themselves alone. Their prayers, therefore, are not heard. (Spiritual Experiences §1850)

People, of course, do not just pray for themselves. It is human nature to care for other people. This is surely what religion is all about. One thing that people may not know, however, is that the emotions involved in that caring and the prayers that naturally spring from them do not remain contained within the person who feels them. They are communicated without our even being aware of it.

According to Swedenborg, angels are able to “communicate to another the goodness, blessedness and bliss that they themselves have received” (Secrets of Heaven §6478)Goodness in heaven is thus “communicated from one to many by means of a real transferring that is remarkable” (Secrets of Heaven §1392). This communication happens by means of the spheres that surround everyone, both in heaven and on earth (Secrets of Heaven §§8794:5, 10130:3)—for a person’s sphere “deeply affects other people” (True Christianity §433).

The communication of love has tremendous power, whether it is expressed in tangible or intangible ways, for love carries all good fortune, success, and healing within it. When people—whether many or few—love and pray for someone, that love is communicated through heaven to that person. While it may or may not have any tangible physical effect, the spiritual and emotional effects can be like the moving of a mountain. The collective love and prayers of large numbers of people exert a tremendous societal force, something that people are only beginning to understand.

So, according to Swedenborg, prayer does not influence God. But prayer is not pointless: it has the power to literally change the world.

 

Jeremy Simons is former Senior Pastor at the Bryn Athyn Cathedral and today in retirement serves as the Cathedral Chaplain.

 

[1] See also Spiritual Experiences §§1300, 5976; Secrets of Heaven §§452, 952.

http://www.swedenborg.com/

Real challenges: addictive behavior in a loved one.

Real challenges: addictive behavior in a loved one.

When someone close to you is struggling with addiction, how can you help them?

If a good friend accidentally splashed coffee onto your dress shirt, you might quickly assure him, “Don’t worry, no harm done. I’ll just put a little soap on it, and I’m sure it will come out.” Not many of us would raise our eyebrows and say, “This shirt cost me fifty bucks. Fork it over! I want you to experience the consequence of your mistake.” In this kind of situation, playing hardball seems a little insensitive. So where do we draw the line between helping others and enabling destructive behavior?

When it comes to everyday interactions, most of us enjoy being able to make another person’s life a little easier. We hold the door open for the person with her hands full; we turn the light on for the friend who’s reading in a dimly lit room; we hand a tissue to the kid who has the sniffles. These things allow us to feel that we’re having a positive effect on the world.

It becomes much harder, though, when we’re dealing with someone who struggles with an addiction. Should we help him recover from his hangover in the morning? Should we call her office and tell them she’s “sick”? Should we loan him money to pay for the car accident he had while under the influence? Should we patch up the hole in the wall and pretend nothing happened? Should we tell her that she can stay with us when she’s kicked out of her home?

When our conscience seems to pull us in two different directions, the teachings of the New Church may help us determine the best course of action. In the Writings of the New Church, Emanuel Swedenborg conveys the idea that real charity involves careful discretion, which he calls “prudence.” He writes that when we give assistance to someone who’s involved in poor behavior, we actually end up hurting others through this person: “for through the assistance which we render, we confirm him in evil, and supply him with the means of doing evil to others” (New Jerusalem and its Heavenly Doctrine 100).

So what can we do? One thing we can do is refuse to undo the consequences that result from an addiction. This can be very difficult. We may suffer embarrassment, exposure, loss of familiar situations, loss of financial stability, or temporary separation. The benefits come later, though, as the gradual process of healing begins. One woman told a story about how surprised and hurt she’d felt when her mother forced her to leave home, after discovering her crack addiction. Years later, having hit “rock bottom” and slowly learned to face her own fears, the recovering daughter spoke with gratitude about the courage and strength of her mother’s decision.

Another step we can take when a loved one has an addiction is to begin finding peace within ourselves. It can help to take time each day to reflect, noticing the ways we’ve been reacting to upsetting situations, and beginning to learn healthier responses. It may also help to seek the advice of professionals who are trained in dealing with addiction.

Learning how to best support a loved one who suffers from addiction can be a tremendous struggle, but there is also enormous opportunity for growth, when it is undertaken with patience, prudence and prayer. If you are currently in this situation, may the Lord bless you and the ones you love on your journey to emotional health and recovery.

https://newchurch.org/

DAILY INSPIRATION

“People who are in heaven are in the Lord.”

Arcana Coelestia 3637

How does prayer work?

Spiritual Questions & Answers

Discovering inner health and transformation

When I was considerably younger than I am today, I used to think I was lucky; fortunate not to often get het up, upset or worried like individuals I noticed around me. Then I met the real world – the demanding boss, the troublesome colleague, the awkward neighbour – and I realised I could get as emotional as the next person. I do feel irritated when things go wrong; I do get angry when people are inconsiderate; I do find myself nervous in unfamiliar social situations.

Just as I am writing these words, I am very much aware of a telephone conversation in an adjoining room. I cannot hear the words but I’m half listening to the tone of voice of my wife as she is talking to someone we are fond of who is having a bad time of things just now. So I’m naturally concerned. It’s distracting my mind. I feel uneasy, unsettled, even anxious.

We get so immersed in the hectic daily round that we forget those past occasions – perhaps infrequent and brief ones – when we actually felt content with life, and there was a sense of inner peace. Only when we concentrate hard do we vaguely recall  having had that state of mind –  when the stress of everyday life was forgotten, when we were becalmed in what had been a stormy sea, and when we sensed a harmony with everything around. Those were the times when we felt we had found refuge and protection from the conflicting and unsettling pulls of what was going on around us.

People ask, ‘How does one engineer this sense of calm in the muddle, disarray, and emotions of daily life, when one feels anything but tranquil?

When I think about it, these moments of inner quietness for me have occurred in prayer. I’d love to talk in a simple down to earth way about such times. But mere words seem so inadequate. The experience of profound stillness is so different from ordinary consciousness.

Other people who have talked about such peaceful moments may have travelled a different path but I can’t separate these special moments from my religion. A Divine state of peace comes from a ‘place’ deep within oneself and yet it is also an inflowing presence from above. This probably sounds a bit odd if you are not of a religious persuasion, but all I can say is it is very real for me.

The trouble is I’m not sure whether I want to tell others about it even if I could find the right words. The sense of the Divine Presence while conversing with God feels such a personal and private matter. The mystics have been willing to put it into words, but for me it seems like betraying a secret as if one were telling people about an intimate moment with one’s lover.

For love seems to me to be the essence of that inner sense of peace; feeling fully accepted warts and all, fully embraced by the unconditional compassion and mercy of selfless love. This is a very different picture of God to that of the old religion based on a literal understanding of the Bible. For the traditional idea of a judgmental, punitive, vindictive God is not my religion. It is not a picture of God that I could turn to for rest and peace, but rather one to turn to in fear and guilt; for we don’t find inner peace by condemning ourselves.

I think that perhaps another obstacle to experiencing inner calm is our negative reactions to other people.  I’ve found that only when I give up mulling over unwelcome things said by others can I hope to experience the peace of forgiveness. In a state of anger, peace cannot be found.  For only when we bring peace to others can we find peace within ourselves.

Also I would suggest that it’s no good praying merely to get confirmation for our own views about things. We need also to be prepared to have our eyes opened. Prayer is like any worthwhile conversation; it has its awkward moments when we realise we have said something daft or unfeeling or when we realise the full implications of some casual comment.

What counts is what comes from the heart and not whether we are using smooth phrases.  For me, prayer is the focusing of one’s thoughts on the Christ within and this must necessarily involve our whole being.  Only then can we become fully in touch with the Divine Peace that passes all understanding.

My own problem is one of complacency. Things go along hunky dory for a while, life seems to be running smoothly, and I forget to make contact with the Source of peace. Thinking about it, I realise that repeatedly, it’s usually only when I hit the rocks and suffer hurt and sorrow that I spend sufficient time in prayer.

For only then do I really try to surrender my own ideas and hopes. Only then do I really ask about what God wants in the circumstances I find myself in. And only then do I get an answer which gives such a sense of serenity. We don’t find rest from problems unless we speak with God sincerely, fully opening ourselves to the Divine Presence.

This article was first published as A Time to Keep Silence and a Time to Speak in New Vision Magazine July/Aug 2010

http://www.spiritualquestions.org.uk/

Posted on2nd July 2010CategoriesMeaning of life, ReligionTags, ,, , , , , , , , , , , ,  Leave a comment

Nurturing the Soul Course

By Helen Brown published by spiritualwisdom.org.uk © July 2009 pp 75 £9.95 Enquiries:  contact editor@spiritualquestions.org.uk

Helen also leads groups taking this course. The aim is primarily to encourage reflection, experience and exploration of what our ‘soul’ means for each of us. The scope of the course includes music, art, prayer, meditation and energy medicine.

This has been a course that was both inspirational and challenging.  Throughout the eight sessions in our exploration of the ‘soul’, Helen gently guided us along an inner path in keeping with her book on the subject.

We were a small group who throughout our time together formed a very supportive and close connection.  At the beginning of each session we sat round a table where there was always a simple but beautiful delicate arrangement of flowers and leaves encircling a candle.  As we lit the candle and concentrated on the light we left behind the outside world, forming our own peaceful and tranquil world through meditation and prayer.  This made a perfect start to our spiritual journey, discovering and connecting with our own soul.  During the course we were encouraged to follow our own path freely, expressing and sharing our thoughts and feelings.  It brought in music, art, prayer, meditation and specially chosen readings to help in this search and nourishment of our own soul.

It was suggested by Helen that we should keep a journal where we can reflect on the course as it unfolds, giving time for more thought.  I chose an artist’s journal as I find both illustrating and writing stimulating.

In the quest for the soul I found I was becoming more attuned with my inner self, gaining a deeper understanding of what this long journey involved.  There were parts which were challenging and painful; complex issues had to be confronted before moving on.  Throughout the sessions this was balanced with the uplifting realization that the soul is a recipient of life from God and that the Divine flows in with Love and Wisdom.  The soul is a sacred place where God dwells.  This knowledge is inspirational, but before we can find and nurture the soul we have first to reach down into the recesses of ourselves, seek and find God and with love bring Him into our daily lives, letting His light shine in our hearts.

I have found this course exhilarating and plan to continue with this spiritual journey.

As we sat around the table for our last meditation, it came to me that our group represented a lotus flower.  I visualized each one of us as petals of the flower joined together as one with the candle in the centre radiating light.  As we lent forward to blow out the flame we sent love and peace to the world.

“OM.  In the centre of the castle of Brahman, our own body, there is a small shrine in the form of a lotus-flower and within can be found a small space, we should find who dwells there, and we should want to know him” (Chandogya Upanishad).

Rosella Williams, Course member

Here are some additional comments from others in the group: ‘its been a spiritual journey, a journey of discovery’, ‘ I found it opened doors and brought up things that I hadn’t thought about before’, ‘enlightening’, ‘gave me peaceful thoughts – we shared the journey’, ‘helpful and reassuring’.

Aborigines: What can they teach us?

AboriginesIt has been suggested that Australian Aborigines are primitive and uneducated; animists who uses ritual to win the favour of the spirits controlling food, shelter, and fertility and to ward off malevolent spirits.

Despite what sounds to the western mind as believing in superstition, these semi-nomads have shown enormous intelligence by hunting and foraging for food, and thus surviving, in extreme conditions of the arid bush-land and desert wastes for over 30,000 years.

Respect for nature of Aborigines

Like with other indigenous peoples, there is a sense of closeness with, and a deep respect, for the natural world of animals and plants. Full-blooded Aborigines in their natural state live in and are influenced by both the physical world and also by what they think of as a spirit world (dreamtime). They are not materialistically orientated like those of European descent. Their spiritual values have been reflected in a rich oral tradition of legend and ritual going back to ancient times, unaffected by Western world religion.

And so the question arises whether there is anything of value in their way of life which can benefit us all today?

A few Aborigines left

With white settlement of their tribal lands and consequent loss of identity and self-esteem, their culture is being lost. However, there are still some initiated into their legends and rituals who know the traditional meaning of rock and bark paintings, ceremonies and oral teachings.

Cyril Havecker lived close to the Warramunga Tribe and was seen as their blood-brother. He has written an illuminating book Understanding Aboriginal Culture.

Creation myth of Aborigines

All Aborigines, initiated into their tradition regardless of the tribe to which they belong, share a creation myth. Baiame is said to be the supreme intelligent creator spirit who dreamed of a future that he wanted to materialise. In other words there is thought to be a purpose behind the development of the world; all living things being brought into existence with the object of fulfilling a function in the great plan of life.

It is also taught that myriad portions of intelligence were taken from Baiame’s supreme intelligence; each of these being a human soul (yowie).

Idea of soul of the Aborigines

There are said to be three inbuilt drives in each person – drives to survive, reproduce and achieve. These drives were to be the cause of all the trouble and mischief on the earth but also the cause of all that is positive and productive. Each soul was to have the will and freedom to discriminate between positive or negative action, choice being dependent on wisdom-knowledge and level of development. It was decided to give each soul a memory to prevent chaos.

Dreamtime of the Aborigines

Associated with this creation story is the claim that the physical world is connected to a psychic dimension by character vibrations and that this land of mystery actually exists. It is referred to in their mythology as the dreamtime.

The tradition teaches that the universe is a mental creation projected out of spirit essence. And so traditional healers and magicians (wirinun) who deal with spirits have been operative and are well known for their powers in extra-sensory perception and control of the mind. Induced emotion and directed thought are two powerful ‘magical’ weapons used by the wirinun. And so as part of training, such a person undergoes a strong personal discipline. This involves long periods of isolation, and restriction in diet.

It is said that when in a heightened state of consciousness, such individuals make contact with the ancestors in the spirit world (dreamtime); this being possible because each individual soul has two bodies — one material and also a spirit body (dowie). It is the latter that is apparently used to communicate with the ancestral spirits. The soul is said to never leave the body of the living except at physical death, when it goes to reside permanently in the dreamtime; this dimension only being continually experienced in a spirit body as it is not somewhere in space: it is all about us and it requires only the proper conditions to be contacted at any given time.

Spirit world of the Aborigines

The wirinun, through training in concentration and the environment of the spirit world, use signs, symbols and incantations necessary to call up needed psychic entities. Whilst operating in what is regarded as a sacred area (bora ground) the magician is believed to be protected from demons. Such an individual never calls upon any spiritual entity with which he is not completely familiar for he says he must know their nature and aims. In fact he often uses prayers (narmingatha) directed to the supreme intelligence (Baiame).

In seeking the aid of benign entities of the spiritual world he uses no words of compulsion, or extravagant terms. He asks earnestly and gives reasons. He does not ask for something that deprives people of what justly belongs to them or which gives an unmerited advantage over someone else.

A lot more could be written about this fascinating tradition. However to sum up, extra-sensory perception, survival after death, and constant contact with a much more knowledgeable spiritual world, are all widely accepted facts in traditional Aboriginal culture; as is the presence of a supreme divine spirit and other spirits who affect life on earth. In fact the whole of their lifestyle is subject to supernatural forces.

Is there anything here for us to learn?

Copyright 2012 Stephen Russell-Lacy
Author of  Heart, Head & Hands  Swedenborg’s perspective on emotional problems