October 11, 2016

.

Okay, should we channel like we used to--for no particular reason, at all? Steve has no hint of a topic. He has been up less than an hour, having gone through the lengthy routine of getting his Mom up for her medicine, changing the sheets, etc., and has grabbed a bowl of granola, checked book sales (none) and this website's stats (promising), and here we go.

Steve has to get "launched," and usually I will start supplying seed-thoughts in quick bursts. Very quick--so quick, they have flown past like little birds before he has hardly glimpsed them. But he's having trouble starting...

We have a hummingbird feeder on the upstairs deck outside the office, here, a few feet away from the regular feeder. We have been getting chickadees, and wrens, and the mild doves who waddle around picking up what they drop, below. Occasionally a cardinal, and the ever-present "gang of sparrows," who come and go, leaving the other birds a breather to partake. But now we have a female hummingbird who makes her appearance briefly. She first drives away the other birds, who are two or three times her size; that business done, she chirps with satisfaction and takes her meal. A quaff; then pulling back in mid-air to survey; then another quaff, and suddenly she is gone!

Steve doesn't get the sense that, when I was Abby, I had the same appreciation for them as he did. But we didn't see them all that often. And I particularly liked the song birds. Matt liked hummingbirds because they were fascinating--an engineering marvel, if you will. But he also liked them for the same reason he liked me--they are little magical beings who pack a surprising punch! Well, that's the best way Steve can think to word it--remember, I am giving him quick thought-impressions, and he has to put them into words.

Steve has discovered something about our Victorian era that he had not been able to find anyone discussing in the historical literature--that it was fashionable to have "mourning portraits" taken. Not just of the dead body--which everybody writes about, now--but of the people who were grieving. This was the fascination with--not only death, but with grief. And that was because we were losing spouses and children and family members right-and-left. We had to assimilate it into the experience of life, somehow. So a record was made, not only of a death, but of our grieving, itself.

Steve is getting something from me--about jokes--jokes about death? But now he thinks I am saying, one would be sitting for a mourning portrait, during which one was supposed to think about one's loss--and a mischievous younger brother, or sister, or Aunt, would suddenly say something funny, just as the shutter was being snapped! Now, this would have been after my time, as photography was not available, then. So Steve is not sure he is getting this right--but I continued to watch the whole of the 19th century, and to try to help Mathew, after I passed. So I did see all these things. This could also have been true of sitting for a painted portrait, only the jokes would be ongoing, when one was supposed to be sitting for an extended period displaying the proper mood. So perhaps that is the impression I was sending.

Now, Steve likes to shock--he will say things he knows people aren't ready to accept, with mischievous glee, knowing he will "turn them off." (He also knows they will come sneaking back for a second peek.) You probably expect me to be topical--though your time, as you may know, is not how I experience it, here. So you want me to comment on current affairs--you may think, "If she was real, wouldn't she have something insightful to say about the U.S. election, and the state of the world?" If I told you, you wouldn't believe me. Shall we go ahead, no-holds barred? (Now I have your attention.)

But I'm warning you, you won't believe me.

Our Guru, Meher Baba, was the latest Incarnation of the Christ. Other cultures would use different titles, like Messiah or Avatar, or Buddha. It is his job to straighten out this mess, and he comes to earth when things get at their worst. His closest male disciple, and personal assistant, Eruch, once complained to him that he (Eruch) used to be a good person; but now, after years of being in close proximity to Baba, all of these unwanted thoughts and tendencies kept assailing him. Why was Baba's influence seemingly making him a worse person than he used to be?

Baba's reply (from Steve's memory) was to give an analogy of the way they process sugarcane. Now, last night, on the TV program, "Globetrekker," the host visited Guadeloupe, which is where my family came from. I spent some time convalescing there, as Steve has discovered, and so I saw this first-hand. But after they grind up the sugarcane, they have to boil it, and all the impurities come to the surface and must then be swept off. Baba told Eruch that the same thing was happening to him.

So, you see, the proximity to Baba's energy is the "heat." We are the sugarcane with all its hidden impurities. The heat boils the juice, and all of this filth rises to the surface, meaning, all our weaknesses come to the top, out in the open, for all to see. Do you think you are a pious, loyal member of a certain religious sect? Now, you see, you have become a villain, a fanatic, and a murderer of innocent children. All that was hidden in you, and in your smug self-conceit, you never realized it. But the same is true for all peoples, all over the earth. Did you think you were a successful businessman or a leader of men? Now you have become a murderer who plays heartless chess with the thousands, or millions, under your control. (I speak of no particular person--this is for all.)

Baba also said (Steve again paraphrasing from memory), that what we think are our virtures, are actually our vices; meaning, our cherished virtues are so often hiding our vices. So everything is being tested; and the dross is being driven up where all can see, and then extracted. This process is exquisitely painful; because, as Buddha taught, we do not want to give up our desires and attachments. Meaning, our ignorance. We do not want to release our death-clutch on our ignorance, where it is seemingly justified as virtue.

Steve reminds me that Swami Vivekananda, the disciple of the God-realized spiritual master, Sri Ramakrishna, was fond of saying, "Not from bad to good, but from good to greater good." So it is not that we are "bad," and must become "good"--it is that we are rising. But we must never become complacent, you see. There is yet more ignorance to burn off; there is yet more inward beauty to reveal, when the latest ordeal of "soul-scrubbing" is completed. Meher Baba taught the greatest secret, which became lost to Christianity as a religion--the deepest Self, the soul in its essence, is already pure. It is the ignorance of the mind, acculumated through ages of reincarnating--first as animals, and then as man--which must be cleaned off. It is the ignorance of selfish clinging which must be renounced, in favor of an increasingly universal love.

Either you see these things, or you don't; and if you don't (or can't) I could never explain it to you. Read Meher Baba's "Discourses," and you will see it explained with a clarity far beyond what either I, or Steve, or both of us struggling together, can express. Meher Baba expresses these things effortlessly, out of his direct Knowing.

Steve might think to have me apologize for "preaching"--but this is not preaching. This is plain talk. Is it too plain for you?

I am not one for denouements, or clever wrap-ups. I will not descend from the sublime to the mundane. The tune of the Word is reverberating through mankind, and mankind's sins are being driven out in the open; we, collectively, cannot abide such nakedness. We are being driven to a higher type of love; and as we cling to the old, suffering is inevitable. But those of us who have already been "scrubbed," can find that it is a time to serve.

Love to each and all,
Abby