Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Story Before The Story

My story continues.

I will preface it with this.

In March 1981, when I first came to the Soviet Union and was studying for a semester in Moscow, our student group went on a trip to Vladimir and Suzdal (historical Russian towns) during the International Women’s Day holidays. On the bus going there, I happened to sit next to Alan, the Middlebury group leader. Both British ex-pats, we found we had something in common and chatted amicably. I already felt a deep bond with Russia by this time (although we had only been in Moscow for a month) and was entertaining thoughts of making it my home. I remember asking Alan if he knew of any Westerners who voluntarily came to live in Russia (then the Soviet Union) permanently. He said he had heard of such people, but they tended to “disappear into the woodwork.” Those were his very words. Something lit up inside me. I began conjuring up images of living in a little wooden house out in the Russian boonies and literally disappearing into the woodwork.


The house I am now living in is about 50 miles from Vladimir. I don't know about you, but I find this highly significant, magical even. Had I known back then that thirty-four years later I would be traveling to Vladimir again, the second time in my life, to look at the house being offered to us to live in, I would have been flabbergasted... Perhaps I did know at some level, but it was not for my conscious mind to fathom at the time. And now that it has come to pass, the pieces of my life are falling into place and forming a splendid interwoven tapestry. It is as though nothing was by chance, nothing was just some whim or fancy I dallied with, but part of a greater plan. The plan is still unfolding, and I do not know how it will end. I hope to reveal more as I continue to follow the mystery.

Krasnaya Ushna

Alice in the Realms of Mystery: Living on the Edge

I stand at the edge of the well and listen. I listen for the secrets it will reveal, I listen to hear what I am ready to hear. What will the mystery we call life reveal to me?

Life has moved on since I last wrote. My house in the country has materialized and I am now living the life I have always dreamed of. It all transpired very unexpectedly. I was walking in the woods with Ivan one day in March (2015) and talking about the prospects of ever finding a house in the country, saying “it will only happen if it is handed to us on a platter.” 

Later on that afternoon, as guests arrived to celebrate Ursula’s thirtieth birthday, this is essentially what happened. Rimma (Ursula's Russian grandmother) had barely stepped over the threshold, when she announced that an old dear friend of hers was looking for someone to live in his country house. His wife had died and he was unable to live there any longer on his own, but he wanted someone to be there and take care of things for him. A trip a couple of weeks later to see the place clinched the matter. I was ready to move out as soon as possible. At the end of April (2015), I did. 

Several months down the line, I continue to embrace the glory of my life. It is the manifestation of my dream.

As I sink into the reality of this new life, I stand at my inner well each day and listen for what I need to know.

I will share some of the revelations I experienced during the month of November 2015 as Alice journeys into the realms of mystery.

Day One-Beyond the Surface Mind

Alice put on her robe and stepped out into the brittle snow. The air was cool and the chill crept down her front and under her collar. But she turned to embrace the elements, raised her arms to the clouded sky, caught a glimpse of the moon, saw the bare branches silhouetted dark against the paler sky. Breathing in the fresh, cool air, she did her stretching and bending while surrounding herself in violet light. What was to come? What was she to hear?

She stepped into the well and cautiously began to descend. The air turned warm and moist, it was very quiet and dark. She slowly felt her way down until she saw a faint light ahead. When she reached the ledge from which the light emanated, she stopped. She was in a shallow cavern, while before her a delectable landscape spread out, all glistening in snow. Tall firs and pines, like candles on an iced cake, stretched as far as the eye could see. A man with billowing hair sat proudly upon a white steed and beckoned to her. She stepped out of the cavern into the snow. It was soft and fluffy, it did not chill her bare feet at all. It caressed them and drew her on. When she reached the horse and its rider, she looked up and saw a broad strong hand reaching down to help her up. With a single hoist, swift and effortless, she found herself seated behind the rider on the broad back of the placid and powerful animal he was mounted on. He smelled of leather, wood smoke, and some unidentifiable aroma of distant forests and unknown lands. She put her arms around his wide waist and leaned against his broad back. They swept away, the horse’s hooves hardly seeming to touch the ground. A fine spray of silken snow rose behind them as they moved. The gentle sunlight caught in it, producing a myriad spangles of pure crystalline radiance, a luminous veil that separated her now from the world from which she had come. She was now beyond her surface mind, delving deeper into the mind connected to her Source. Here the mystery of her life would be revealed.

The air brushed her cheeks, soft, fragrant, and caressing. She fell into a reverie as the horse continued on, covering the distance through the enchanted forest at lightening speed. She did not know where they were going, and she did not care. She felt safe and secure. She knew her Teachers were surrounding her and protecting her, she knew she would soon be in the presence of her Spiritual Family and they would initiate her into some of the time-old secrets. It was impossible to know everything all at once. It was impossible to know everything cognitively. Knowing had to be experienced at a deeper level, not expressed in words to categorize it and trap it in form, but felt with a deep understanding and instant dawning that this was the truth. The light and brilliance faded and Alice came back to earth.

She recalled how she felt sitting astride the mighty steed with her arms around the waist of its rider. She was unaware of herself, of her body, of her identity. Her mind opened and she was one with the horse, the rider, the glowing, radiant brightness all around her. She was one with the wind as they galloped along, one with the iridescent snow flurries that enveloped them, she did not identify herself as separate from all of this. This is what Knowledge was teaching her, the ability to go below the surface mind and be in stillness with the Source of All That Is. In this state, all assumptions, condemnation, hatred, jealousy, greed, ambition, cunning, hypocrisy, spite, and falsity are inconsequential, they do not exist, they do not mean anything. They are phantoms, while beauty, love, expansiveness, admiration, compassion, kindness, glowing vitality, and inspiration take their place. This is the true state of things, Alice knew this and experienced it.

Day Two-Hope

Hope is a cover for fear. So do not even hope, says the oracle. Just accept, be open to what Knowledge brings and offers you, and let the mystery of the Universe work its magic. Knowledge can never be lost, it can only be ignored and forgotten. It is always there when addressed, always ready to weave its mystery into my life.

It was warm and soft as I stepped out into my world this morning. I cannot demand to live here, I cannot negotiate, I cannot bend the rules to suit my own wishes, I can only go with the flow and let it take me where it will.

Alice was ready to journey on and plunge deeper into the well of Knowledge. She sat for a while at the edge, preparing her mind for stillness, listening to hear what she was ready to hear. A faint echo resounded from far, far away. She could not catch what it said. The sound was carried away before she could register it. She began to descend. It was warm and dry. She passed the ledge that led out into the sparkling snowbound kingdom where chivalry and knighthood worked their magic, and continued down into the darkness. A faint reddish glow beckoned her on. Down, down, she went. The glow brightened and she stopped on a ledge with a view out into a fiery world. 

Before her opened a forest glade in the middle of which was a huge fire. The sparks danced skyward, silhouetting the tops of tall pines against the starry sky. There was much movement, many figures were weaving and undulating around the fire in a mesmerizing dance. Alice stepped out among them and found herself drawn into the gyrations. She became one with the dance. The tips of her fingers touched the tips of the fingers of those on either side and they were one. The touch was as light as a feather but as strong as iron. The energy ran up her arms and through her veins. All were bound in mysterious movement. The faces she saw lit up in the firelight were solemn and noble. Some were deeply wrinkled, others were smooth as newborn babes. Hair flowed, but some heads were bald. The movement was rhythmic and undulating, and soon Alice felt herself drawn into the fiery ball of cosmic motion, circulating and rotating, like a Catherine wheel on Guy Fawke’s night. In this state, her mind was free, purified of everything extraneous.

Michael’s face appeared in her vision, noble and smiling, nodding in recognition and understanding. He was a man of his own will, his own inner tuning, listening to his own commands and his own promptings. He would not bend to what the world demanded, he would dance to his own tune, his own piping, a Pan of the netherworld, the night world of secrets. Even gentleness would not coax him to give up his secrets, for they were deeper and more complicated than that.

Then Claire’s face appeared, mellow and calm, surrounded in a halo of angel light. She was an angel and always had been, but her body and mind had betrayed her this time and she was left to struggle against their dark clutches. But sooner or later, she would break free and return to her angelic essence, a goddess of light and goodness, a goddess who knew the price that had to be paid for lies. 

Time has no meaning, it is eternity that counts. There is no linear time, so what we experience in this physical world is a chimera. In the ethers where the Source abides, there is no time, only eternity. And in eternity everything is possible. The diseased mind on the physical plane is a bright and lucid mind in the spiritual sphere. Claire just has to live through this physical stage and then she will move on to embrace the glory of the spirit she truly is. This is what Alice hears today as she dances in unison with the spirits in the forest glade around the giant fire. This is where heaven and earth come together to work their alchemy and where the mysteries of being become manifest.

Day Three-Revealing Secrets

The dark months of the year make a difference. It is already dark at five in the evening and not yet light at five in the morning. There is less than twelve hours daylight time. The urge is strong to turn in after five and hibernate until I know the light is on its way back.

Living on the edge seems like a good title. When I began analyzing why it is I love living in Russia so much, I realized it is because it feels like I am living on the edge of an abyss, I never know what is coming next. Life is never boring, and not because a lot of exciting things are happening all the time, not because I am living an adrenalin-pumped life, rushing here and there in pursuit of a new fix, but because of the mystery of it all. There is a delightful mystery and spontaneity to living in Russia, probably because anything goes, everything is left to divine providence, and things may work out “just on the off chance.” Although nothing really happens on the off chance, everything is set in motion at one time, and if you are aware enough and can go with the flow, life will unfold just as you wish. I am a living example!

I still do not know my mission, though, I do not know really know why I came here, or why I was sent here, at this time, in this place. I can make guesses, but how am I to really know? I am nearing the end of the sixth decade of my life, surely my mission should have become apparent by now? So perhaps I am already living my purpose without being consciously aware of it? It is most likely nothing specific, perhaps it is just finding Knowledge and consciously working toward raising the vibration of the humanity, so we can survive as a race?

But the world is so polluted, so overcrowded, so gummed up with junk, what will it take to purify and cleanse it? There are many movements all over the world engaged in environmental protection, reusable energy sources, economizing on material resources, sustainable ways of life. Surely this makes a difference? Or will some natural disaster wipe out much of the planet so that it can rejuvenate? But where will all the garbage go? That is the physical side.

The spiritual side is another matter. Humanity needs to move to a higher spiritual plane, and there is plenty going on in that direction too. All the esotericism, ascension, light-working, meditation, vibration-raising that goes on. People are searching for something beyond the obvious, beyond the physical, “out of the box,” to use a hackneyed cliché. My mission is to make my own small contribution in the best way I can.

Living here in the bounty of nature, I feel I am more open to the energy flows and more able to be a channel of light and love, a channel containing a greater flux of exchanging flow, as Douglas put it. I like that!

Living on the edge also echoes the idea of standing at the edge of my inner well and listening for what I am ready to hear. If I continue to live on the edge, perhaps life will reveal some of its secrets to me.

Day Four-The Origin

Alice stepped off the edge and descended down into her inner well. Not too far down was a wooden fence. It was smooth and worn with age, revealing a pattern of whorls and subtle stripes, gray with tones of ochre and clay. Vine, dressed in the vivid red of autumn, hung loosely at its sides. 

Through the gaps in the planks shone a faint light, beyond she glimpsed green grass, a garden path, bushes groaning with berries, and a small hut nestled under the boughs of an oak tree. She noticed a gate, pushed it, and it swung open. She stepped tentatively into the garden and walked down the path to the house. It stood enshrouded in a wondrous stillness, an alive and throbbing stillness. It was the stillness of the Universe, the stillness where all things become known. But to know, she had to be aware, and to be aware, she had to shed the shackles of her surface mind that clamored to retain their hold. 

She concentrated on her chakras to open up the cosmic channels. The root chakra slowly unfurled like a red chrysanthemum in the sun, its petals iridescent in a spray of red dewdrops. She moved up to the sacral chakra and saw a bright orange lily open up, its delicate petals also shining with a myriad orange crystals. Next was the solar plexus chakra in its yellow glory, a sunny burst of bright golden light. The heart chakra opened in the splendor of lime green, a ball of green petals tipped in pink. The throat chakra was cornflower blue, glistening with turquoise diamonds and pulsating in an aquamarine glow. The third eye chakra opened in a scintillating burst of indigo, its healing light moving through all the convolutions of her brain and washing them clean, her whole head was filled with pulsating indigo light and at the edges of her vision light poured in. At the top of her head, the crown chakra bloomed like violet clover, reaching up and out, a bright pompom atop her head, tipped in white. She felt the rush of kundalini energy enter and fill her with its power.

Inside, the house had no walls, no beginning and no end. It was a sacred place. Alice stood looking in, absorbing the wonder and glory, allowing the energy to flow through the channel she had opened to contain a greater flux of exchanging flow. She could not know how this occurred, she could only feel her own energized being and experience her own enlightened state. This was not real life though, this was not a place she could stay for long, because the physical world beckoned her back. There was a body to feed and exercise, a mind to bend around the work of the day, a heart to lend to her relationships, a world to see, hear, and tend to, other people to help. This was the price to pay for living in what is known as The Separation.

And this is right in sync with what I heard today on the first day of the Messenger's Vigil  in The Origin, a never-before released Revelation of the New Message from God.

It begins like this:

Life had an origin long ago, before this world existed, before life as you know it existed in this world, before you took form and became an individual in this world. 
Life existed with no alternative to life, complete, whole, engaged, all of Creation, magnificent, beyond words and expression, life in the purest form in myriad expressions, creative but harmonious, life that still exists within you at this moment deep beneath the surface of your mind. 
But there was a Separation, and the Separation created the manifest universe that your senses report to you. 
This speaks to something deep within me, I cannot fathom it fully with my intellectual mind, but it touches a deeper truth.

Day Five-Soul Mate

Life is a mystery and there is so much to learn, take into consideration, weigh up, consider and somehow reckon with. It seems wiser not to form opinions, or draw conclusions though. It seems wiser to take stock and then continue on with an open mind, no expectations, no hopes, no fears, no set plans. Things can never be set in stone, there must be room for maneuver, room for change, opportunities to take a step in one direction only to find it would be better to go in another, without being afraid to retrace or redirect your steps.

We think we create our own reality, that by projecting our thoughts and wishes out into the ethers, our dreams will materialize. This may be true, but it is not of our doing alone. For everyone else is doing the same, everyone else is creating their own reality, so there must be some confluence somewhere. Life is a concert, not individual arias. 

I understand this to be what the Mental Environment means. We do not live in a vacuum, nor do we live in individual bubbles, bouncing around out there, never to touch. I used to think this was the case, since I always felt the absence of mutual understanding. Communicating successfully with another human being always seemed such an enigma to me. We are all so different, vibrating at different levels, on different planes, and it seems practically impossible to tune ourselves into each other’s frequencies. First of all, we are very poor listeners. We listen to the jangle in our own heads, but we find it hard to listen to what other people are saying. Really listen and understand. However, our thoughts flow out from us and mingle in a greater space. And there something happens. Some combination occurs and the reality of one person, several people, entire nations is created according to some pattern, according to certain intrinsic governing laws.

Alice went to the edge of her inner well again and looked down. There was water swirling and splashing, lapping up against the sides of the well. She did not want to venture down there, it did not look inviting. It looked cold and dangerous. But enter she must, for if she looked closer into the depths, she could see a faint light. That light was her destination. She braced herself and slid in. She sank slowly down below the surface and found herself in a warm and nurturing environment. It was not cold and dangerous, it was soothing and calming. It was like being in the womb, the fluid ebbed and flowed, was iridescent and luminous.

She allowed herself to sink down into its caressing wholeness and the distant light came closer. When she reached the outer perimeter of the shining orb, her bare toes touched something solid, she found her feet sinking into soft, warm sand. She was on a beach, golden sand stretched as far as she could see, washed by the gentle waves of an azure sea. There was not a soul around. She stretched out, her wet skin drying in an instant, and allowed all extraneous thoughts to drift from her mind. She was in Shangri-La, but it was not a physical place, it was a place in the realms of mystery, a place deep under her surface mind. There was nothing to distract her, no wind, no hot sun, no sounds, even the sea lapping the beach did this silently. No birds called, no human voice could be heard. It really was as though she were in a vacuum, but a vacuum filled with meaning and significance. If she listened carefully, she may hear what she was ready to hear. It could have no form though, for if she formed her thoughts or questions into words, she could no longer be sure they came from her Source, from the realms of mystery. What she heard had to have no form, it could only be felt and known in the marrow of her bones, in the depths of her soul. What did she feel? What did she know? Her mind was blank.

The sun shines in the front windows, sending out its glow and lighting up the plants that catch its rays. The canaries sing in the kitchen, trilling their lilting song. Her spiritual development was taking its own sweet time. And this was the way it was supposed to be. She was not striving to become super enlightened or ascend to some sublime height. She just wanted Knowledge to open up within her and show her the way. Knowledge that the Creator of All Life had placed within her. Was this so?

Her soul mate was in the kitchen cooking lunch. They had agreed that he was senile and she had Alzheimer’s, so they perfectly complimented each other, since what one of them forgot, the other would remember, and what the other remembered, the first would be the recipient of. He played her a song about a man telling his beloved how he loved her more every day and how their fates were intertwined. So we live in harmony and rub off each other’s sharp edges. What are we to do together? We do not seem to have a common mission. But does that matter? I think not. It matters only that we are together and like it.