I Have A Small But Necessary Part

horseshoe-nail I have a small but necessary partI freely admit that when I first started studying Steps to Knowledge, it did not occur to me what would be asked of me. It told me I have a mission in my life to fulfill. It told me I have come to work in the world. It told me that the world is emerging into the Greater Community of Worlds and that is why I have come. It told me that the world is facing the greatest threshold it has ever faced. It told me I have a small but necessary part in this transition.

I have a small but necessary part

I am sharing this with you because I wish to share something else I wrote to Marshall Vian Summers as part of my participation in the 2016 Messenger’s Vigil of the New Message from God. I wrote:

“The New Message teaching that rings and sings inside me these days is the part in ‘The Global Emergency’ which says ‘It is a race that must be run.’ On my weaker days, I despair that I will make my contribution. I despair that humanity will avoid the great and precipitous decline it faces. And yet, I must do my small but necessary part. I must take the next step in Steps to Knowledge. I must do something to build up the weak pillar. I must follow the next inclination, the next prompt or restraint of Knowledge. I must poke the next hole and plant the next seed.”

I have a small but necessary part. “The Global Emergency” is a revelation which was received in October of 2015. I have written a number of posts on the revelation “The Race to Save Human Civilization,” which was received in 2009. The Global Emergency elaborates on that teaching in this paragraph:

“It is a race to save human civilization. It is a race that must be run. It is the calling for human cooperation and unity to face a reality never seen here on the Earth before in the time of human civilization.”

I have a small but necessary part. I have come to the world to meet certain people. Am I ready for them? Are they ready for me? I don’t know. Abraham Lincoln said “I will prepare and someday my chance will come.” I seek to follow in his footsteps. I have come to the world to give certain gifts. Will I succeed in giving them? I don’t know. I have a lot of work in front of me to be the strong contributor the world needs. There must be many strong contributors in the world now, or humanity faces a great and precipitous decline. “Pillars” is a reference to the four pillars that support a person’s life, (health, relationships, work/providership, spiritual development). Steps to Knowledge teaches on more than one occasion about trusting one’s deepest inclinations. Planting the next seed is sharing the New Message from God.

I have a small but necessary part. In the greater scheme of things, I consider myself to be about as important as a horseshoe nail. And yet,

For want of a nail the shoe was lost.
For want of a shoe the horse was lost.
For want of a horse the rider was lost.
For want of a rider the message was lost.
For want of a message the battle was lost.
For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

A New Message From God? Why Is It Here?

A New Message from God? Why is it here?

This is the second post in a series of posts on the New Message from God revelation “The Proclamation.” This revelation was received by Marshall Vian Summers in July of 2006. The first post in the series is here.

A New Message from God? Why is it here?

What has been declared thus far? Just as God has spoken to humanity on certain occasions, God is speaking to humanity again. God is speaking to humanity again because humanity faces unprecedented challenges. This is the sixth paragraph.

The New Message from God is here to alert, to empower and to prepare the human family—people from all nations and religious traditions, from all tribes, groups and orientations.

[A New Message from God? Why is it here? I believe that the phrase “prepare the human family” means “prepare the human family to respond effectively to the grave and perilous set of challenges mentioned in the previous paragraph.“]

It has come at a time of great need, a time of great consequence. It is preparing people for things that have not even been recognized.

[A New Message from God? Why is it here? In my mind’s ear, I’m hearing the song “Heaven is Ten Zillion Light Years Away” by Stevie Wonder, with the lyric “But if there is a God, we need Him now.”]

It is prophetic in alerting people to the Great Waves of change that are coming to the world and to humanity’s position in the universe, especially regarding your contact with other races.

[A New Message from God? Why is it here? “The Great Waves of change” refer to an ongoing series of global-scale disruptions of what passes for normal life in the not-too-distant future, including disrupted climate, environmental degradation, declining resources, economic turmoil, involuntary human migration, wars of economic desperation, religious wars and intervention from outer space.]

It calls upon the great spiritual presence within each person—the great endowment of Knowledge that has been given to the entire human family, which must now be cultivated, strengthened and brought forth.

[A New Message from God? Why is it here? Knowledge is a key technical term in the New Message from God, and is mentioned in one form or another in almost every revelation. The book Steps to Knowledge describes this phenomenon in great detail. While Knowledge is described in many ways, Step 10 of Steps to Knowledge, “What is Knowledge?” says “Let us say that Knowledge is not the things that are usually associated with it. It is not ideas. It is not a body of information. It is not a system of belief. It is not a process of self evaluation. It is the great mystery of your life. Its outward manifestations are profound intuition, great insight, inexplicable knowing, wise perception in the present and in the future and wise understanding of the past. But despite these great achievements of mind, Knowledge is greater than this. It is your True Self, a Self that is not apart from life.”]

It speaks to the great spiritual need of the individual—the need for purpose, meaning and direction.

[A New Message from God? Why is it here? People are in the world for reasons beyond their preferences and anxieties. They are in the world to meet certain people, to give certain gifts, to accomplish certain tasks.]

It speaks to the great relationships that people can establish with one another, relationships representing their higher purpose in life.

[A New Message from God? Why is it here? Humanity’s great accomplishments have been the result of relationships representing higher purpose in life.]

It speaks to the needs of the world and the needs of the future. In so doing, it brings purpose and recognition, unity and cooperation, wisdom and strength to all who can receive it, who can learn it, who can follow its steps, who can contribute it to others and who can share its wisdom in service to other individuals, to families, to communities, to nations and to the whole world.

[A New Message from God? Why is it here? About a dozen books of the New Message from God have already been published. Some of these books address the subject of individual development, such as Steps to Knowledge and Greater Community Spirituality. Some of these books address potential futures for humanity, such as The Great Waves of Change and Life in the Universe.]

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

How Will We Leave This Lovely, Dangerous Place?

Departures. How will we leave this lovely, dangerous placeNo, no, I’m not talking about a plane crash or a falling piano. Neither am I thinking about the biological processes involved. Some vital part is stressed beyond its capabilities and fails. So it goes. I’m particularly interested in the attitude, the frame of mind, with which certain people approach the day of their death.

How will we leave this lovely, dangerous place?

Someone who is contemplating becoming a student of Steps to Knowledge might reasonably wonder (among other things), “What does Steps to Knowledge teach about death?” They might also wonder, “How do students of Steps to Knowledge approach the day of their death?’

In the steps of Steps to Knowledge I have blogged about so far (steps 1 through 93), the word “death” is mentioned exactly once, in Step 40, “Today I will feel the power of God.”

“All the seeming powers of your world—the forces of nature, the inevitability of your death, the ever present threat of illness, loss and destruction and all appearances of conflict—are all temporary movements in the great stillness of God.”

Death, while significant, is not as significant as our cultural perspective. Step 65, “I have come to work in the world,” contains the following:

“You have come from a place of rest to a place of work. When the work is done, you go home to a place of rest. This can only be known, and your Knowledge will reveal this to you when you are ready”

While Steps to Knowledge claims that we go home to a place of rest, it also admits that this is something which can neither be observed by one’s senses, nor inferred or deduced by one’s intellect.

I only know of two students of Steps to Knowledge who have died. One of them was mentioned in an online chat. I never met them. The other person was a gentleman I met at the 2012 Encampment. As a matter of fact, we were roommates at Encampment, and we had a number of significant and fruitful conversations. We had a number of online and phone conversations between the time I met him in September of 2012, and the time he died in November of 2013. When he died, I was told he was diagnosed with colon cancer in the summer of 2013. I remember thinking to myself “Dead? Dead?!? I didn’t even know he was ill!” I consider him to have been remarkably discreet and undramatic about his illness.

Therefore, from what I have read in Steps to Knowledge, and what little I have observed of students, my answer to the question “How do students of Steps to Knowledge approach the day of their death?” is “With discretion, and without drama.” If they sing their noble death song, they sing it only to themselves, and die like a hero going home.

A fellow student shared something with me that I believe provides an excellent exclamation point:

“The man or woman of Knowledge knows that this life is a small and yet important part of much bigger lives that we’re all living. As such, they see their lives as brief missions on Earth and when they are done, they return to this greater life as a member of a Greater Community with knowledge of their mission on Earth done or not done.”

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

How Long Do I Have To Rehearse?

Nativity Scene, The Promise, Glen Rose, Texas, USA  How long do I have to rehearse?In the 1980’s, I participated in over a dozen different dramatic productions with three different theatre companies, including almost 100 performances of the passion play “The Promise” in Glen Rose, Texas, pictured above. During that time, something in my experience shifted regarding auditions. Before the shift, I believed that the audition was where the casting director decided whether or not I would be in the show. After the shift, I believed that the audition was where I decided whether or not I would be in the show, and having a lot of fun at the audition was my way of deciding that I would be in the show. I realize this sounds a little pompous, but I’m not claiming I didn’t have to do the work of preparation. I’m just saying that this attitude allowed me to approach an audition from a position of greater strength on the inside.

How long do I have to rehearse?

I’m telling you this to tell you that Steps to Knowledge has a certain cleverness which allows it to speak to the conditions of many different people. The cleverness is in using multiple words with similar meanings to describe a particular idea. For example, a seed was sown in Step 33 “I have a mission in my life to fulfill.” It was watered a little later in Step 65, “I have come to work in the world.” It is now being watered again in Step 92, “There is a role for me to play in the world.”

I confess to you that when I studied Step 33, my reaction to the word “mission” contained a certain ambivalence. People whose lives are organized around their mission are sometimes called fanatics or obsessives or just plain nuts. As someone who has successfully sabotaged multiple jobs, I approached the word “work” in Step 65 with a soggy, dampened enthusiasm. But a role for me to play in the world? I screamed “Makeup! Gimme the script–please sing that chorus once more!” on the inside. Maybe on the outside, too.

I believe I am playing my role in the world, while in rehearsal for greater participation. There is a role for me to play in the world. How long do I have to rehearse? A gentle whisper says “Not very long.”

 

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

I Will Practice Today. And The Next Day.

This is the third post in a series of three posts regarding the Step 70 review of Steps to Knowledge, where Steps 50 through 69 are reviewed. I am sharing my notes from when I actually did this Step (sometime in the summer of 2011) with some commentary.

I will practice today. And the next day.

Step 64 – “Today I will listen to another” – “I was hoping for a greater communication, but I didn’t get one.” The Step said “Allow others to express themselves to you.You will find that they have a greater communication for you than you might at first have anticipated.” Even though I didn’t experience a greater communication at the time, I felt good at having followed the directions. I felt good at having practiced listening.

Step 65 – “I have come to work in the world” – “I got it, but I’m still mystified.” I don’t remember what I was mystified about. I might have wanted more details about my work in the world. I might have been mystified as to how I could be somewhat autistic and accomplish anything the world actually needs.

Step 66 – “I will stop complaining about the world” – “The kids said ‘Yeah, right’ when I told them this step. More ‘observe without judgment.’ I’ve got plenty o’ nothin’ and nothin’s plenty for me.

Step 67 – “I do not know what I want for the world” – “I spent three days on this, thinking about the uniting world, the intervention, and the degradation of the environment.” The “intervention” is a shorthand term for a complex of phenomena described in much greater detail in the New Message book series The Allies of Humanity.

Step 68 – “I will not lose faith in myself today” – “This is such a challenge for me, but I remember grasping while journaling that I’m part of a much larger enterprise than me.”

Step 69 – “Today I will practice stillness” – “The instructions were ‘Be still, and get off on it.’ I did.” Those weren’t the exact words, but was the general idea. The Step did include the words “Allow yourself to bathe in the luxury of emptiness.”

Here is the word cloud from Steps 50 through 69.

Steps To KnowledgeSteps50-69WordCloud

I will practice today. And the next day. And the next day. And the next day.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

I Will Keep My Hands To The Plow Today

I will keep my hands to the plow today, I'll keep trying and believing, like the Little Engine That Could

Steps 65 through 67 of Steps to Knowledge contain three separate critiques, or criticisms, or rebukes of what passes for normal life in the world. Step 65, “I have come to work in the world,” pokes at the idea that we just showed up here.  It rebukes the idea that our reason for being here reduces to individual and species survival. Step 66, “I will stop complaining about the world,” rebukes the idea that we are entitled to have the world conform to our ideals. Chances are good that the things I’m complaining about are the very things I came into the world to address. Step 67, “I do not know what I want for the world,” rebukes the idea that our preferences and anxieties are an adequate foundation for our mission in the world.  A student might ask “Is there anything I get to keep?!?”

I will keep my hands to the plow today

Step 68, “I will not lose faith in myself today,” answers that question “Yes.”  Do you have a beginner’s mind?  Keep that.  Do you have the resolve to go forward? Keep that.  Do you have the willingness to receive the assistance of your Teachers? Keep that.  Do you have the self-esteem required to approach the great mystery of your life? Keep that.  Keep and fortify all of the above.

I will keep my hands to the plow today. I believe where I’m going is a place I want to be. I believe I have friends helping me get there. I believe I will see the goodness of God in the land of the living.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

I Should Be Suspicious Of What I Want For The World

Paul Atreides would avenge his father and bring the universe to its knees.  I should be suspicious of what I want for the world.

Steps 65 through 67 of Steps to Knowledge have something in common.  They all contain some variation on the sentence “You have come to the world to work.”  Step 65, “I have come to work in the world,” introduces the idea.  Step 66, “I will stop complaining about the world,” gave the idea of something I need to drop if I’m going to take this idea seriously.  And now, Step 67, “I do not know what I want for the world,” brings another item from which I need to slowly back away; my designs for the world.

I should be suspicious of what I want for the world

Someone might say “I don’t demand that the world devote itself to making me happy.  I’m willing to be the change I wish to see in the world.” But what if the change you wish to see in the world sets other events in motion resulting in changes in the world you didn’t wish to see?  Are you wise enough to see it fully through?  I’m not.

Someone might say “I would make the world a more just place.”  But many who live deserve death, and some that die deserve life.  Can you give it to them?  Even people who care about strangers, who care about evil and social injustice, can be heartless and cruel and hard and cold.

I am recalling the Rumi poem which I have already shared once in this space:

Who makes these changes?
I shoot an arrow right.
It lands left.
I ride after a deer and find myself
Chased by a hog.
I plot to get what I want
And end up in prison.
I dig pits to trap others
And fall in.
I should be suspicious
Of what I want.

Someone is going to ask, “Well, what should we do then?”  Steps to Knowledge recommends at this point that we cultivate a healthy suspicion of what we want for the world.  Steps to Knowledge recommends at this point that we reserve a space for what Knowledge knows it must contribute, for the mission we have in life to fulfill, for the work we have come to the world to do.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

Some Questions About Complaining

I have some questions about complaining, such as When will I stop?

As I ponder Step 66, “I will stop complaining about the world,” of Steps to Knowledge, I recall a cartoon showing the Israelites crossing the Red Sea, as described in chapter 14 of the book of Exodus. One Israelite is saying to another, “Well, it’s a little damp underfoot…”

Some Questions About Complaining

Is a complaint a judgment on “external speaker?”

Is a complaint a dead giveaway of the presence of idealism, the mother of judgment? Is a complaint a dead giveaway of the absence of Knowledge?

Is a complaint a demand that someone conform to my expectation, with a promise to withhold my happiness and participation if it goes unmet?  Is a complaint a thinly veiled hostage situation, where I am both the hostage and the hostage-taker?

Do you hear people who are flourishing in any area of human endeavor complain about the challenges they face?  Do you hear NBA basketball player LeBron James or La Liga forward Diego Costa complain about the people who try to keep them from scoring?

Does my complaining make me a better person?  Do I have a moral duty to complain as little as possible?

Is my complaining an attempt to enroll you in my judgments and ideals? Will you stop me before I complain again?

Does my complaining make the world a better place?

If I have a mission in my life to fulfill (and Step 33 of Steps to Knowledge says I do), then does my complaining help the fulfillment of that mission?

If I have come to work in the world (and Step 65 of Steps to Knowledge says I have), then does my complaining further that work?

Why are complaints considered less profane than certain other utterances?

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

The Horseman And The Snake

The-Young-Poet-Rumi-by-Skip-Noah Rumi wrote the story of The Horseman and the Snake

The Young Poet Rumi by Skip Noah

The Rumi story of the rider and the man who swallowed a snake first appears in Book 2 (out of 6) of the Mathnawi.  I have read two later versions of this story.  One of them is the 18th century version by Salim Abdali.  The other is the 20th century version by Coleman Barks, called “Jesus on the lean donkey.”  I am sharing the Salim Abdali version, found in the book “Tales of the Dervishes” by Idries Shah.

I am sharing this story because there is a section in the Coleman Barks version that captures the feeling I felt when I first wrote about Step 65 “I have come to work in the world” of Steps to Knowledge.  The line that skewers my soul is “God’s Silence is necessary, because of humankind’s faintheartedness.”  Here is the story.

The Horseman and the Snake

There is a proverb that the “opposition” of the man of knowledge is better than the “support” of the fool.

I, Salim Abdali, bear witness that this is true in the greater ranges of existence, as it is true in the lower levels.

This is made manifest in the tradition of the Wise, who have handed down the tale of the Horseman and the Snake.

A horseman from his point of vantage saw a poisonous snake slip down the throat of a sleeping man.  The horseman realized that if the man were allowed to sleep the venom would surely kill him.

Accordingly he lashed the sleeper until he was awake.  Having no time to lose, he forced this man to a place where there were a number of rotten apples lying upon the ground and made him eat them.  Then he made him drink large gulps of water from a stream.

All the while the other man was trying to get away, crying “What have I done, you enemy of humanity, that you should abuse me in this manner?”

Finally, when he was near to exhaustion, and dusk was falling, the man fell to the ground and vomited out the apples, the water, and the snake.  When he saw what had came out of him, he realized what had happened, and begged the forgiveness of the horseman.

This is our condition.  In reading this, do not take allegory for history, nor history for allegory. Those who are endowed with knowledge have responsibility.  Those who are not, have none beyond what they can conjecture.

The man who was saved said: “If you had told me, I would have accepted your treatment with a good grace.”

The horseman answered: “If I had told you, you would not have believed.  Or you would have been paralyzed by fright.  Or run away.  Or gone to sleep again, seeking forgetfulness. And there would not have been time.”

Spurring his horse, the mysterious rider rode away.

I read the tale of The Horseman and the Snake, and I cry out that my heart might be less faint.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

Let’s Get To Business, Shall We?

Let's get to business, shall we?  These men will.  Well, after lunch, that is.

Let’s get to business, shall we?  Steps to Knowledge does.  Steps to Knowledge, as early as Step 6, “I have a true foundation in the world,” describes the world as a place to which we have come.  The world isn’t merely the scene of a biological accident.  The world isn’t just a karmic prison which we don’t escape until we have paid the last penny.  I wrote about this in more detail here.

But why have we come to the world?  In Step 18, “Today I feel the truth arising within myself,” we are told we have come into the world to find certain individuals.  In Step 34, “I am a beginning student of Knowledge,” we are told there are specific things we have come to do.  I consider it most pertinent that that statement comes in the step directly after Step 33, “I have a mission in my life to fulfill.” In Step 55, “I will accept the world as it is,” we are told we have come to the world to serve.  Step 65, “I have come to work in the world,” adds another clue to the mystery of why we have come to the world.  Step 65 is also the first step to use the phrase “I have come” in the step itself.

Let’s get to business, shall we?

Step 65 is the first step since Step 33 to directly address the idea that there is a mission to fulfill, that there is work to do in the world.  It is as if Steps to Knowledge sowed a seed in me in Step 33, and came back to water it in Step 65.  Are we told what the mission is, what the work is?  No.  We are only told what it is not.

“Your work is greater than your current employment. Your work is greater than what you are currently attempting to do with people and for people. Your work is greater than what you are attempting to do for yourself. Understand that you do not know what your work is. That will be revealed to you and it will evolve for you, but understand today that you have come to the world to work.”

I have a thought that if I had a direct experience of my work which I came to the world to do, at the time I did Step 65, then I would be terrified out of my senses.  I would run screaming from wherever I was, knowing full well that there was no place to run screaming to.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.