My Story and Perspectives
- Part II
"Searching for Meaning"
spiritual search has been about the most roundabout convoluted
path I can imagine
as briefly outlined Part I. I am rather
stunned that I am still alive. Rather than go into the complete
story, I will highlight and comment on some of the key aspects
(including some new aspects to Part I).
was brought up in a Norwegian Lutheran church, rich in fellowship,
but rather shallow in spirituality. Activities and music were
wonderful, as were the people. However, I drifted away in high
school, lured by rich or exciting opportunities and responsibilities
married a Catholic spouse and attended Catholic services (for
her sake), but found little depth until many years later (through
not well known aspects of Catholic faith). I DID enjoy their folk
masses (always sitting close to the musicians so I could sing
harmony) and their casual atmosphere. Yet
I also found myself
drawn to the ritual of their occasional formal masses (e.g. Christmas
Eve). But I did no study of their faith or the Bible until my
big crash in '88.
my crash, I groped everywhere for direction, from the secular
to the spiritual. One of my very first actions was to randomly
open the Bible
first to the story of Job (which made me
even worse), and then to the Beatitudes (which felt very comforting).
However, I quickly exhausted the Bible's ability to help me, finding
it very inadequate for today's world, and not satisfying my deep
longing to understand the man who brought new teachings to the
world 2000 years ago.
embarked on an all-out search to better understand him.
the same time, some writings came to me (via my wife and our Catholic
marriage encounter group) about reported apparitions of Mother
Mary in Medjugore, Yugoslavia. Despite my repulsion to all the
Catholic adoration of Mary and other saints, I had a powerful
response to her words, and a deep inner knowing that these apparitions
(and her words) were true. What to do with them was my question.
next few years found our family making two pilgrimages to Medjugore
plus many other large gatherings related to Mary and miraculous
healings. We even visited the Vatican (seeing the Pope) and Assisi,
home of my favorite saint
this time, I read voraciously
including secular self-help,
spirituality of all kinds, and some very special (and not well
known) writings about THE MAN. Perhaps the most powerful was a
massive five volume work called "The Poem of the Man God"
by Maria Val Torta. This work was supposedly dictated by Jesus
himself to Maria during the 1940's, visually appearing and speaking.
He spoke in two modes: one, telling his story in far more depth
than the Bible; two, commenting on what he really intended and
how it applies to modern day. I was entranced like never before,
feeling I had an unbelievably special gift, too precious to share
with anyone. I felt a connection to him and his words that defies
few other books during that time gave me almost as powerful reactions:
"The Aquarian Gospel of Jesus the Christ" by Levi, "Life
and Teachings of the Masters of the Far East" by Spaulding,
and "New Teachings" by Essene. All of them gave me entirely
new perspectives and awakenings about THE MAN and his teachings,
as well as other spiritual revelations.
despite all these revelations and growth, my marriage and career
deteriorated and eventually collapsed. I had an insatiable hunger
to explore vast new worlds that were severely lacking in my worlds
of that time.
my divorce in '92, I started exploring a vast range of religions
and beliefs, from very fundamental to radical New Age. More than
just studying the beliefs, I attempted to understand the people
of these faiths, what drew them, and what was needed to connect
and blend all these polarized groups. Little did I know what I
was getting into. Nothing has ever challenged me more than dealing
with religious righteousness. Science and technology seemed like
kindergarten in comparison.
I'll go into more depth about these experiences. Part of me wishes
I could go back and take a totally different path, staying out
of all that horrendous horror. But another part of me keeps pulling
me even deeper into what repulses me most: righteous zealots of
all types, whether religious, political, intellectual, or other.
I'm convinced that these forces present the absolute single greatest
danger to our world survival today
but also offer us our
greatest opportunity to create heaven on earth.
here I am
like it our not: attempting to dance with the
absolute worst of my dragons, demons, and disgusting mortals (including
going back to my story
my career divorce in '95 (more painful than my marital divorce),
I fell into severe depression, feeling I'd screwed up beyond repair,
unable to find a way out. I retreated into virtual isolation,
barely able to function... not showering, answering mail, and
barely eating. I grasped at radical healing of all kinds (shamanic
soul retrieval, psychics, hypnotherapy, etc) with no success.
Eventually, I gave up... letting mainstream psychiatrists take
over... with a vast range of drugs, hospitalization... and finally...
electric shock treatments. Still no help. I screamed in anguish,
feeling totally abandoned and betrayed by God and self... pounding
holes in the walls, seeing no way out... even suicide... for I
knew that suicide makes things worse for everyone... including
my own eternal soul.
hurts just to recall this anguish and utter despair.
after about nine months of this hell, I stumbled on a thread of
hope. During my extended journey to hell, I relived every part
of my past (repeatedly)... realizing what an incredibly rich life
I had had... and how many wonderful gifts, opportunities, and
people had blessed my life. I felt that I could not "check
out" before I had at least expressed my gratitude to these
many precious souls.
single choice began my recovery.
having a goal gave me renewed energy and clarity. Over the next
several months, I searched for contact information for almost
200 people who had most impacted my life... going all the way
back to grade school teachers. I wrote very personal letters from
the heart to every one... using calligraphy and very exquisite
stationery. With this project came a renewed will to heal, learn,
dove into reading like never before... on every conceivable topic...
from the traditional secular to the esoteric spiritual. Healthy
diet and exercise became a powerfully driving force. Exploring
holistic healing modalities was close to obsessive. Attending
many churches and other spiritual gatherings was life-giving.
200 letters... most never got sent... feeling drawn to contact
these people more directly... which I did over the next two years...
involving two car trips around the country... reaching all but
a handful I couldn't find or who had died.
process alone was miraculously healing. Expressing gratitude was
amazingly transforming. Sharing my story opened hearts and connection
like nothing I'd ever experienced. And making amends with those
I'd hurt (or had hurt me) was indescribably freeing.
other healing and liberating actions amplified the recovery:
First: giving away or selling virtually all of my belongings...
putting love and effort into the process like that of letting
go of a cherished pet or child (including ritual).
Second: moving to the
magically healing community of Flagstaff, Arizona...where I immersed
myself in a holistic community, volunteer work, healthy diet/exercise,
befriending street people (and other struggling souls), and exploring
the breathtaking nature of the Southwest (mostly alone and on
foot... often BAREfoot). Connection with the elements (with wonder,
awe, and ritual) was magically healing... especially when ALL
of my senses where fully engaged.
addition to bringing me vast new friends, experiences, and perspectives...
serendipity brought me a wonderful "princess" who became
a critical part of my healing and joy. We shared an unbelievably
rich diversity of experiences and travels... from the silly to
the sacred, secular to spiritual, simple to profound. I discovered
aspects of living that I never even new about, much less experienced.
Serendipity (or synchronisity) became an everyday expectation.
more serendipity brought me the most profound segment of my life...
moving to a magical castle... with my precious princess... in
the City of Angels... one block from a massive mountain wilderness.
I was in heaven.
Los Angeles was a city I had avoided all my life... feeling it
was the worst of everything (e.g. sprawl, decadence, pollution,
frenzy, etc). Yet... living there brought me an entirely new perspective
(and love) of this marvelous miracle... and home of dreams come
true (e.g. Disney, Hollywood, etc). I found the best and worst
of everything and everybody... totally reversing my past biased
and ignorant perspectives. I found rich spiritual communities
(amidst the most hedonistic), amazingly unused wilderness (next
to mass metropolis), marvelously fresh produce (despite the overcrowded
and polluted surroundings), and a dream come true castle... for
the creators... and for me.
castle (Rubel Castle) is a testament to the miraculous power of
shared dreams... when combined with love (but not the drippy or
artificial kind of love that dominates most professed seekers
and workers of love). Michael (Mykee) Rubel was a little boy who
never grew up (nor wanted to), by his own statements. His passion
was building forts... using junk from the local dump. He and his
friends kept building bigger and bigger forts... until one day
(in their twenties)... they decided to build "the big one".
Using junk, salvage, donated materials, and volunteer labor...
they embarked on a 30 year adventure to build what still takes
my breath away... Rubel Castle. What's more incredible than the
results is the process... and the obstacles they overcame. I would
need an entire book to give any degree of justice to this miracle
(Read "One Man's Dream - The Spirit of Rubel Castle"
seven of us (besides King/Janitor Michael and Queen Kaia) were
privileged to live in this breathtaking castle, along with geese,
chickens, dogs, cats, horses, peacocks, and raccoons. It also
was blessed with a dozen different fruit trees... and unlimited
year round avocados (ahh... heaven). It was definitely not for
everybody... but it was beyond perfect for me.
little did I know that a worse hell than ever was ahead of me.
seven years of this heaven (following my previous hell), "atomic"
disaster hit... sending me into an indescribable two year hell
that I am only now emerging from (Spring 04).
trigger... discovering some old files from my Hewlett-Packard
days (during my first "crash" in 88). These files contained
a number of proposals and inventions that (in hindsight) were
absolutely inspired... but that I never shared... with anyone.
I went into paralyzing shock, horror, fear, and grief beyond measure.
The more I "processed" them, the worse I got. None of
my normal coping skills, healers, and friends helped me... despite
desperate attempts at each. Of particular horror was a business
proposal I wrote... that "might" have transformed the
world of business... and the world.
happened to be a very unique position at a very unique time...
when Hewlett-Packard was just introducing their revolutionary
inkjet printing technology. I was part of the original development
team (described earlier in this story), but had recently moved
into Marketing... first in applications and then to play a key
role writing the business plan for this groundbreaking technology.
Most of us recognized the incredible power of what we had and
what impact it would have on the marketplace. And because of barriers
to entry by competitors (e.g. patents, capital investment, expertise),
we stood unchallenged... except for another part of HP that was
introducing the laserjet printers... but mostly for different
these two technologies, HP had the power to completely dominate
the exploding world of computer printers. And it did... over the
next decade... taking an unheard of market share (near 80%) of
a HUGE market. They could barely keep up with demand, building
new factories around the world, working around the clock, seven
days a week. Compounding this was the concept of highly profitable
disposable (and proprietary) print cartridges (both inkjet and
laserjet... a virtually endless market from print-hungry consumers.
this long story?
part of me was caught up in the excitement of this "golden
goose", another part of me said "Wait. Aren't we getting
greedy?" And I wrote a proposal to that effect... to limit
our growth, raise prices (and profits), and use the windfall profits
for many philanthropic and beneficial purposes... setting an example
and challenge to other corporations to do the same.
Because HP and its visionary founders were highly respected as
perhaps THE shining light of stewardship and healthy practices,
and because the unique culture of HP (e.g. talent and love) still
existed at that time, and because I was highly respected and in
a uniquely influential position (at the right time)...
"could've" changed our (HP) direction... and ultimately
transformed the world... from "greedy and exploiting predators"...
to caring and contributing stewards of life. (How's that for breaking
all grammar rules?).
"might-have-been" scenario locked me in the fires of
hell... and beyond... nonstop... for two years.
the same time, I saw horrendous signs of apocalypse everywhere...
with humanity on a blind path to destruction... with my beloved
HP (and my blunder) leading the way.
grasped without success for ways to transmute "my blunder"
and the ways of the world... but finding nothing... feeling WAY
WAY WAY over my head... in the face of the biggest scariest horrendous
dragon of all time. I irrationally grasped for a time machine...
as the only solution I could find... not just to 1988... but all
the way back to childhood... to reverse countless "errors"
in my life that I only now recognized: e.g. adolescent indiscretions,
choice of career, choice of spouse, choice of lifestyle, etc etc.
"How could I have been so stupid, and blind, and irresponsible?
Why didn't God guide me? Why have you betrayed me, God? Help!
Help! Help! Eliminate me... please! Eliminate my soul... not just
my life. The pain is too severe" etc etc etc.
saw no solutions among healers, experts, friends, and family...
having gone way beyond their understanding and capabilities.
wanted the absolute impossible... whether the time machine or
to single-handedly "save the world". And even "saving
the world" didn't seem enough. How could I ever heal the
anguish of the horrendous pain I had allowed or created to others...
and the world.
This quest and dream
are my last ditch attempt
to do what I can
no matter how hopeless
no matter how far
Can I succeed?
Can WE succeed?
really don't know
of me truly believes we can
IF (a BIG IF)...
humanity will truly embrace
the REAL principles of love
FAR beyond the love of today
FAR beyond the choices of today
FAR beyond the beliefs of today
MUST open to new paradigms
letting go our pride
at the REAL work...
the REAL enemy...
(e.g. blame, avoidance, righteousness, etc.)
is the only REAL solution
to the massive problems we face
We MUST love our enemies
as the masters have spoken
if we wish to survive
much less transcend
do we ignore these masters
while professing to believe in them?
MUST walk the talk, America
it will hurt
but as Jesus said
and others have taught:
"It will be worth it"
will join with me
and others before me
on this "impossible dream"
this "impossible quest"?
will love enemies
no matter their crime
no matter the cost
no matter our pain?
will walk this talk
and do this work
to learn REAL love
especially TOUGH love?
in the miracles long promised
by Jesus and others
of Heaven on Earth?
will face the devil himself
the devil within
of pride, greed, and sloth
and admit our own faults?
and live our
of greatness unheard of
beyond violence appalling
and love one another
and love painful work
and love our Earth Mother
discover true honor
in humility and service
and come home to God
who needs our help also
to help those abroad
and see God within
and stop attacking those
who believe in this "sin"
has the courage
and wisdom and drive
to take this high path
and be truly ALIVE?
it you my dear Christians
or Muslims or Jews
or is it the "heathens"
who connect with Earth's dew
it you my dear Buddhists
or Taoists or Hindus
or is it the atheists
who choose to just DO?
it you my dear capitalists
or leaders or
or is it the "scum"
we call terrorists and leachers?
time for new thinking
letting judgment fall back
and look to new answers
for all that we lack
let us be "children"
with wonder and awe
to reclaim true joy again
in the miracle of ALL
we can do it
Yes, we can win
this battle of battles
if we seek deep WITHIN