My Life Will Have To Do!

I went to Southwest Baptist University and got an B.A. in a double major, Theology and Speech/Drama. For the latter I got elected to Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities. I did graduate work towards my M.Div at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. I did a pastoral internship and became a licensed Southern Baptist minister. However, I was not very happy with that denomination because they were becoming very right wing and anti-intellectual. But it was in seminary that I received an “inner call,” not to be a minister but to be an opera singer. Without any formal training in voice I entered the Metropolitan Opera Auditions of the Air in 1974 and won. I was given a two year apprenticeship with the Santa Fe Opera and made my stage debut there, then with the Tulsa Opera, which nourished me during my early years. I sang at the Metropolitan Opera in a Gala Concert in 1975 and was awarded the Gladys Axman-Taylor Memorial Award for being one of the ten National Winners of the Met Auditions. I moved to New York in 1975 and began studying with Jerome Hines and Cesare Bardelli of the Met and coached with Alberta Masiello, the head of the coaching department of the Met. For two years I had a mailbox at the Met because so many people were writing me there. Every day I would come in the side stage door and check my mail.  I made my New York stage debut in 1980 at the Brooklyn Academy with the Chamber Opera Theater of New York, in an opera by Sir William Walton called The Bear, based on the Chekhov farce by the same name, and received a great review from The New York Daily News. I became a member of Jerome Hines’ personal Opera Company and sang with him for 20 years. In 1981 I starred in the New York premiere of Rimsky-Korsakov’s opera, Mozart and Salieri, and received highly favorable reviews from New York critics as well as 100 critics from all over the world. From that point I sang leading roles in all the major opera companies in America and some in Canada and Europe. Some of the fun times were when I sang La Traviata  in Central Park with the New York Grand Opera. We also performed it at Coney Island and in Brooklyn. Also, in Lincoln Center, I sang a summer concert with the Guggenheim Concert Band.

I won several awards: Besides the Met Auditions, I won the national award for the WGN Auditions in Chicago and the Bruce Yarnell Memorial Award for Baritones in New York.

My European debut was in 1984 as Verdi’s Rigoletto which I played at the Belfast Grand Opera House as part of the Northern Ireland Opera Festival. One performance was broadcast over radio by the BBC. It was still dangerous over there then. We had a judge in the chorus who always had two body guards with him. The theatre itself celebrated Queen Victoria being named Queen of India and was ornately dressed with huge elephants all over the theatre, carved ones of course. The Director was the very famous Nicholas Hytner with whom I got along famously. Hytner went on to make many hit movies and became director of the National Theatre in England.

 

I was fortunate to sing with the great opera singers of that day who were international stars. I always felt my work in opera was to inspire my audience to look upward and ask the big questions in life: “What is Truth, Beauty, and Love.” Art cannot give the answers but it is very good at turning one’s gaze upwards. In short, I was trying to inspire people with my singing and acting. I felt that I could do it better on a stage than from behind a pulpit! But I did not lose my interest in theology. Far from it, I completed and finally received a legal Th.D degree in 2016 just out of my desire to finish something I started long ago.

I was Professor of Voice at the University of British Columbia, Indiana University, Perdue University of Indiana and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. I am retired now but still teach a few students. It has been a long road from Carthage, and could have been longer. In 1982 I sang a concert based on war and peace, half in Russian (which I learned) and half in English, all high song literature on the subject, including Mussorgsky song cycle, “The Songs and Dances of Death” (sung in Russian). The sponsor for the concert,  which was to be held at Marymount Manhattan College in Manhattan,  invited the United Nations delegation from the Soviet Union and the delegation from The United States. The American delegates did not attend, but the entire Russian delegation came and filled the first three rows of the theatre. At the end of the concert, they rushed up on stage to thank me. The lead delegate said to me “That was real Russian you sang!” and we talked for a few minutes. He said he would try to get Goskoncert (the Soviet Art Agency, to invite me to perform in Moscow. All sorts of Congressmen recommended me to them including Rep Taylor from Missouri, but in the end it didn’t happen. In the course of my career I sang for US Representatives, Senators, Consuls, and Ambassadors. I almost sang for Jimmy Carter.  I met him in the elevator going down to my rehearsal! Stars of the Met became my good friends and even were my fans. At the Met, James McCracken, Jerome Hines, Ezio Flagello, Carlo Cossutta, Teddy Uppman, Gilda Cruz-Romo, Marilyn Niska were all my fans and I was their colleague. Those were the days!

Galina Vishnevskaya, the Russian soprano, who was exiled from the Soviet Union along with her husband, Rostropovitch, chose me to sing the leading Russian Baritone role in Tchaikovsky’s Opera, Iolanta, which she was to direct  at the Salzburg Festival. From hearing me sing, she thought I was Russian, so my Russian must have been pretty authentic. I sang the role of Boris Godounov many times in Russian. It was a role that fit me well, perhaps because I learned it from my teacher, Jerome Hines, who was one of the great Boris’ of all time. I received many reviews from world critics which placed me at the top of my operatic profession. But I developed personal enemies among the moguls who politically control opera because I would not depart from my goals to use opera to inspire people and uplift them. I would not do crazy things like wear a space suite and pretend to be singing on the moon, or sing totally nude! Such idiocies were creeping into opera even then. But I did the best I could to fulfill my dreams to use opera as an inspirational art. Hundreds of my performances are on youtube and have been seen worldwide now. I wish I could have done more, but the miracle is that I did all that I did fighting against congenital heart disease. I sandwiched my career in between three open heart surgeries.  My life will just have to do! 🙂

Joe 02-13-16

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The Case of Jonah Parr

This story is true but I have changed the names and gotten permission to share the general story which is condensed here. This is the kind of work I have done as a medium. It is sort of like being a psychic social worker but it is one of the things I was given to do. I have a ministerial degree and had pastoral counseling while I was doing my pastoral internship. Then later in life I was trained as a Social Worker by the State of New York and had to counsel abused children and their parents. Later in life when it became obvious that my gifts were mediumistic I helped people with problems on different levels. This case I am sharing with you my friends because it has so much to teach. There is so much cruelty in the world, much of it happening to children. There was and is so much work to do. We are all just big used kids!! I should advise you that this case involves, violence, bad language, and references to terrible acts…but it ends well.

Here is the case of Jonah Parr.

I must explain again that the names and circumstances have been changed so Mr. Parr would feel free to allow me to share his story. All of our life stories are grist for the mill and may help others. The case is true, the names and places have been changed, and Mr. Parr agreed to allow me to use his story.

Jonah Parr telephoned me and asked for my help. He had been having very strange dreams that were terribly confusing. He thought that he might be possessed or he might be having a partial memory of another life time. I quickly consulted my guides to see if I was to work on this man. They gave the OK and I set a time for Mr. Parr to come over for an interview. He was a tall gaunt man who looked like he had just come out of the Great Depression. He wore a well-worn suit, shirt with no tie and no hat. I exchanged pleasantries with him and asked him to sit down.
He was from a large family in Kentucky but had moved to Canada to work in a corporate office. His family of six had lived in the country about two hours East of Bowling Green. His Father had been a part-time minister of a country Pentecostal Church and farmed the rest of the time.
“Could we talk about your Father,” I asked. Jonah fidgeted in his chair and said, “Yeah, I guess so.”
“Was your Father a loving man, Mr. Parr?” Jonah almost bolted out of his chair. He was standing straight up in the room, staring into space.
“Are you uncomfortable talking about your Father, Mr. Parr?”
“Yeah, I am damned uncomfortable, but I’ll talk to you if you can help me.”
That last part had sounded so lost and hopeless. “Well, why don’t you tell me whatever you can about him?”
Jonah began to pace about the room. “He abused people!” He shouted out. “He abused me and my mother, about as much as anyone can be abused. He did it to my sister as well. Nobody could talk about it….Do you want to hear my dreams or not?”
“Yes, sure.”
“Well I have a few that I just keep having. I am crawling on the floor. I can’t walk yet. I crawl into a room and I hear someone shouting, ‘Stop, please stop John. It hurts so much.’ And she was screaming ‘Stop, Stop, Stop.’ I recognized the voice as my mother, Olivia. The man who was on top of her got off and looked down at me. It was my father, John. ‘Why you little peepin Tom rug rat, I ought to drop kick you out of the house! You stay out of this room you little prick head.’ I crawled away.”
Thank you Jonah,” I said. “Let me ask you a little more about your father. Did you love him?”
Jonah looked very conflicted and said, “I don’t know. I feel guilty for not loving him.”
“You said he was a Preacher. How did you feel about that?” I asked
Jonah began to laugh a little but the laughter mixed with tears very soon.
“I hated him,” he sobbed. “I hated him because he was such a hypocrite. On Sundays he would go into that church and make everybody feel like he was so goody goody. We had to play the part of the nice preacher’s family. After the service he would bring us all to him and we would have to shake hands with everybody and pretend we were a happy family. Nobody knew what he was really like. I hated him for that.”

“Can you tell me what he was like?” I asked.
“He was a violent, no good, mother fucker. He cussed at us all like a sailor. He used to say to my brothers, James and Peter, “You worthless little motherfuckers! Look what you have done to me! I used to be somebody but now I am just a nigger for all you.” He told us every day that he hated us and that we were bags of shit, bastards, worthless pimples on his ass.”
“Did he call you names, Mr. Parr?” I asked. Jonah was silent for a minute or so.
“Yeah,” he finally said. But he only called me that someplace I can’t quite remember.”
“That’s OK,” I said, we have plenty of time. James, Peter, you, Mom and Dad, that is five. Who was the sixth person? I asked.
“That was my sister Ellie who was three years older than me.” Jonah grew quiet.
“Did your father also cuss at Ellie,” I asked.
“WHY DON’T YOU JUST SHUT THE FUCK UP YOU WORTHLESS PIECE OF SHIT. I NEVER SHOULD HAVE COME HERE TO BEGIN WITH.” Jonah exploded.
I quickly dowsed my guides to see if I should continue. They said yes, so I quietly said to him, “Mr. Parr, you said on the phone that you wanted my help. Do you still want me help?”
He stood up and just stared for some time and then said, “Yes…I need somebody to help me.” He began to cry and crumple up into a fetal position. “Won’t somebody help me?” He began to sob uncontrollably. I went over to him but did not touch him and quietly said, “I will help you Mr. Parr. He raised his head and spoke through the tears, “Really? Maybe you don’t know what you are getting in for.”
“That’s OK. I have a lot of helpers. We can help you. Are you able to continue?”
He stood up and walked over to a chair and sat down. “Yes, I am able.”
“Would you like some water, or coffee or tea?” I asked.
“Maybe just a glass of water.”
I got it for him and handed it to him. He seemed to be a little more calm.
“Mr. Parr,” I asked, “what was your mother like?”
He grimaced, but he softened and said, “I always loved her. She was gentle and kind. She almost seemed like she was in another world. I don’t know why she stayed with him. She let him use her like a punching bag. It was one thing for him to cuss at us and hit us. It was something else to do that to her!”
“Did your Father abuse your mother, Jonah?”
“ABUSE HER?” he asked in a sardonic voice. “He used to cuss at her the way he did us. If she tried to stand up for us when he came to beat on us, he would say, “I’ll beat you too, Livy.” And he would push her down on the floor. I so wanted to kill him right then. I would go to bed every night and beat my pillow pretending it was his face I was pounding. I would dream of getting his shotgun from his closet and just cut him down one night and laugh over him. I wanted to cut his dick and balls off and ram them up his ass with the shotgun.”
This was very revealing but I knew I could not inquire into it yet.
“Did your Father treat Ellie, the same way?” I asked.
“NOW I TOLD YOU, YOU PIECE OF SHIT NOT TO TALK ABOUT ELLIE! SHE WAS AN INNOCENT LITTLE GIRL. SHE NEVER HURT A LIVING SOUL AND SHE NEVER DESERVED WHAT SHE GOT! NEVER! IF I HAD KILLED HIM IN TIME….”
I asked my angels and guides to send me an angel of peace to come into the room. Soon Jonah began to cry again.
“Jonah? I quietly asked. “Can you tell me about the other dreams you have been having?”
He was silent for a moment and then he said, “I keep dreaming about the puppies,” and he started to weep again.
“Whenever you are ready please tell me about the puppies.” His face lifted up, all full of tears.
“We lived in the country. I told you that. We had about five acres. We had us a cow and two or three pigs, some chickens, and a big garden. We found lots of dogs but Dad would never let us keep em. But one Christmas mama brought home a puppy and told us we could keep it. She said she would find some way to square it with Dad. We named him Buster. We loved that dog because it loved us back. But by the time it had grown a bit we noticed Buster was really a girl. We thought about changing her name but we never did. About a year later we noticed that Buster was getting pretty fat. Mom told us that Buster was getting ready to have puppies. And one day, there in the barn, she did! Five beautiful puppies! It was the greatest happiness any of us kids had ever had. I was four years old at the time. One Sunday morning I was out in the barn playing with the puppies when mother called to me:
Mother: Jonah, come in and get ready for church. (Jonah comes inside and dresses in a little white shirt and dark trousers).
Father: (John Parr is 6 feet tall and 220 lbs.) “Jonah come here. Let me put your tie on.” (Jonah comes to him and he clips on a little tie.)
Mother: Are all you ready? We’re gonna be late for Sunday School.
When we came back from church we were sitting at the dinner table when mom asked:

Livey: what are we going to do with all those puppies? We cain’t keep um.

John: (chuckles between big bites, speaks with his mouth full) You just leave that to me Livey.
Jonah: Mother why can’t we keep the puppies?

Livey: Because Jonah, We are poor. We don’t have the food to feed all those puppies. They grow up to be big dogs and we cain’t feed all them. (Jonah is silent. The family finishes dinner.)
Livey: Ellie you wash the dishes and let Jonah dry.
Jonah: (speaks loudly for him) Oh Mother I want to go outside and play with the puppies.
John: You do what your Mother says Jonah or I’ll box you.

“Jonah, you have talked about physical violence, what did that phrase mean, ‘I’ll box you!’”
“When the old man wanted to,” said Jonah, “he would knock us around. His favorite punch was his fist to my face, or a back hand. He liked that one too. He would hit me and send me flying across the room. I was four years old. Sometime he liked to blister me with his belt, and at other times, a limb of a tree. He would always pull my shorts down and hit me right on the butt. He really liked my butt.”

“How did he like your butt?” I asked very gently. Jonah turned white and said, “I have had other dreams.”
“Could you tell me those dreams, Jonah?” I asked
“I don’t know.” He seemed very cautious
“You may hate me if I tell you the dream.”
I spoke very slowly and gently to his inner child. I told him this time and place had been given to us as a safe place where dreams could be told and no judgments made.
“Well, if I tell you, will you promise not to think I am a bad man?”
“Yes,” I said, “most definitely.”

“In the dream I am little again, about three years old. Bath time, bath time, bath time, water running. Mom is gone. The old man sent her shopping. Bath time. The old man comes into my room without a stitch of clothes on. I think I have seen him this way before but I’m not sure. His penis is so big. He looks like a giant. He takes all my clothes off and I am standing there naked with him. My head doesn’t even come up to his penis. He says, “We are going to take a bath together. You are big enough now. We are going to always bathe together.”
“Then I remembered that my older brothers had gone into the bathroom with him too, but they never talked about it. He took me by the hand into the bathroom. He turned on the water to fill the tub. Then he just looked at me. The way he looked at me scared me. Then he began to use his hand on his penis and pretty soon it was standing out straight. I was scared. He got in the bathtub first and spread his legs. His big penis was stranding straight up in the air between his legs. He told me to get in the tub and sit between his legs. As soon as I did he pulled me back into him. I could feel his hard penis pushing at me. I was really scared. Then he reached around me and picked up my little penis and said, “You just have a little tiny prick that is good for nothing. Feel mine.” And he put his penis up against my butt. He seemed to like my butt. Then he picked me up by my shoulders and sat me down on his big penis. I started to cry and call for mom, but she was not there and my brothers didn’t come.
“I am just going to give you a little taste tonight. I am just going to stick the head of my dick up your butt.”
All I remember then is pain and crying for mom. He got out of the tub and looked at me and said, “You didn’t give me any pleasure at all, you little shit, you little no good prick.”
“Is that when he called you a name Jonah” I asked
“HOW DID YOU KNOW THAT? I NEVER SAID ANYTHING ABOUT IT! YOU BETTER NOT TELL ANYONE WHAT HE CALLED ME!” Jonah was screaming.
“Was the name he called you different from the other curse words he used?” I asked
“Fuck you. How did you know? You fucking asshole!” Jonah spouted.
“You don’t have to tell me if you don’t want to Jonah. It’s OK”
“OK. You wanna know? He called me “precious.” “PRECIOUS!” WHEN HE STUCK THE HEAD OF HIS DICK INTO MY BUTT HE CALLED ME PRECIOUS!” BUT I GUESS I DIDN’T PLEASE HIM ENOUGH BECAUSE I WASN’T PRECIOUS VERY LONG.”
Jonah began to cry and go into a fetal position. I comforted him. All of this had taken place in thirty minutes. Jonah had been dying to tell someone who would not judge him. I was about to go into a gentle close of the session when Jonah said, “Now do you want to know about the puppies?”
“Do you feel like you want to tell me?”
“Yeah, you gotta know.”
“That Sunday afternoon when I was four, Dad told all us kids to take an afternoon nap. When we got up he told us all to come out to the tool shed. When we got there, there was Buster and her puppies and Dad with a hammer in his hand. He said, ‘I told you not to get a dog. We cain’t afford em. Buster this is your last day on earth,’ and he hit her on the head hard with the hammer. She cried and then fell silent. ‘Now boys, each of you are going to take one of these puppies and knock it in the head.’ He gave the hammer to James, who began to cry. ‘Hush up,’ said the old man, ‘or I’ll give you something to cry about.’ He picked up a puppy and set it on the concrete right underneath James. ‘Now hit the damn thing, James,’ he screamed. ‘HIT IT! HIT THE LITTLE MOTHER FUCKER! HIT IT!’ But James wouldn’t hit it so Dad hit him. He hit him with his fist right in the mouth and knocked James out of the tool shed. So he gave the hammer to Peter and said ‘HIT IT YOU PRICK OR I’LL KILL YOU!’
“Peter was crying but he hit the puppy and it died. ‘NOW YOU PEE WEE,’ as he hands me the hammer,’ HIT THAT ONE THERE! HIT IT YOU LITTLE PUSSY. HIT IT. HIT IT. HIT IT. HIT IT. HIT IT. HIT IT YOU LITTLE PRICK.’ So finally I hit it. It fell and cried and then it stopped crying. I so wanted to take that hammer and kill Dad with it. I wanted to see him fall down and cry and then die! WHY DID THE PUPPIES HAVE TO DIE? WHY? WHY? WHAT HAD THEY DONE TO BE KILLED SO HORRIBLY?”

“Jonah, you have experienced horrible things. Your mind has gotten confused over how to understand it all. When all of this happened you had the mind of a child. Children are not supposed to experience terrible things like these. Now I am going to tell you some things that are absolutely True. Listen.
You are not responsible for your father’s abuse. He is responsible for it. He had power over you and made you do things. You have not failed anyone and you are not a bad man. You were injured by your father because he was a bad man. You have nothing to feel guilty for.”
“But I let him do terrible things to me. I AM guilty.”
“Jonah, when you are that small you cannot stand up for yourself. Your parents are supposed to stand up for you. In your case, they were too sick to do that. But you are not to blame and you have nothing to be guilty for. You are as God created you. You are beloved as a Son of God.
“These dreams are not former lives or evidence of spirit attachment. They are your mind asking for help in solving these incongruities that your child mind could not solve. If we find anything more spiritistic we will deal with it. How does that sound?”
“So then you will help me?” he asked in almost the same tone as in the beginning.
“Yes, Jonah, I will be honored to help you. We can figure all this out. Would it be OK with you if we had just a short period of silence before we go?”
“Sure, I guess.”
I closed my eyes and went into spirit and asked my guides to bring in Jonah’s guides and healing spirits to work with us. I also called for an angel to come just to protect Jonah. He came. I asked for guidance to be able to bring about the greatest possible good for Jonah.

Do you think you will be able to sleep tonight?” I asked.
“My doctor gave me some meds to get me to sleep.”
“That’s good. Try to listen to relaxing music tomorrow and I will see you at 2:00PM the next day.
“Thank you. I can’t believe I actually told you all that stuff,” Jonah said
“I’ll be happy to see you day after tomorrow. If you have any problems or anxiety, please call me, OK?”
“OK, thanks. Bye.”
“Goodbye for now Jonah. See you soon.”

The Next Session

“It’s nice to see you again, Jonah. Would you like something to drink?”
“Water is all, as usual.”
“Then water it shall be.”

“Did you sleep well Jonah?”
“Not bad. I took those meds and I don’t remember any dreams…just as well.”
“Well, hopefully you won’t need that medication very much.”
“I see from my notes that you are 55 now. Are you mother and father still alive?”
“Ah Christ no. Mom died of leukemia ten years ago and the old man croaked from Alzheimer’s last year.”
“And what about your siblings, James, Peter and Ellie?” Jonah became very quiet.
“James died of a drug overdose when he was 29 and Peter joined the Army and was killed in Iraq. He was blown up by a land mine. There was nothing left to bury.”
“I am very sorry to hear this Jonah. Did you have a positive relationship with them?”
“Not much. When we got old enough to leave home, we all just sort of went crazy and scattered to the wind. None of us ever got past high school. James didn’t even graduate. I tried to go into business. I would do OK for a while but just when I was about to make it to the top something would happen to knock me back down again. This job I got now in Hawaii is going pretty good so far…as long as I don’t advance too far.”
“And what about Ellie? How is she?”
Jonah was silent.
“It’s OK.” I said. “We can talk about her later when it feels right.”
“It is never going to be OK Mr. Shore…James, Peter and I tried to protect Ellie from Dad but we were just kids. My sister was a sweet girl. She was innocent. She had beautiful, long blonde hair and a perky little smile. She was really popular in school and she was doing well…until she was about seven. We heard the doors creak at night. Her bedroom was next to mine. We got out of bed and went into the hall. There he was, right at her door. ‘You little bastards get back to bed before I kill all of you,’ he screamed at us. No way Mom didn’t hear it. He went into Ellie’s room. We heard her cries, ‘No Daddy don’t. I don’t want to do that.’ Then the sound of a slap and crying, and the old man’s voice, ‘Now put this in your mouth and suck on it. It’s good for you!’ There was just the sound of whimpering until Ellie screamed, ‘Daddy don’t. It hurts too much.’ And the old man moaning, ‘You’re my woman now Ellie. Your mother’s no good. It’s just you and me now. We’re going to do this every night.’”
“And he did…every night. When Ellie was 17 she got Dad’s shotgun one day while he was at work and shot herself. James, Peter and I decided we would kill him then. James attacked him straight on but the old man beat the shit out of him. Peter and I decided we would wait for our chance. The old man had a 1953 Nash Rambler that he took to work every day. We decided we would cut half way through his brake hose. If we were lucky he would find a last resting place in some ditch. He went into the ditch alright, but he survived. We left home then and the rest brings me here.”

“I am so very sorry Jonah,” as I fumbled for words.
“Jonah you came to me because I am a medium I would like to try to help you as a medium. Would that be OK?”
“Any help, any help, please,” Jonah choked out the words.
“The first thing I am seeing Jonah is that your father put a generational curse on you when he abused you in that bathtub as a toddler! Some father figure did that to him back there in the woods and he passed it on. Let’s get rid of it, from off your back!”
I went into spirit and asked help from all my spirit guides and angels to remove this generational curse. We did it. It was removed.
“How do you feel now Jonah?” I asked
“Oh my…I feel like a terrible weight has been taken off me!”
“Yes,” I said, “it has been and there is nothing from that curse left to hold you back. That curse had made you feel guilty and you projected that guilt on to the authorities in your life. You saw them as evil so that you wouldn’t have to feel guilty yourself. But as you can see, it didn’t work. It just kept you from making a success of your business life. Now you are free to accomplish what you want.
“Jonah, do you think now you could look back on that bathroom abuse and see who was to blame?”
“How?” he asked.
“Just begin to visualize your life moving backwards and see if you can look at that scene so etched in your mind. But this time you see it, you are in a safe place. Your spirit guides and angels go back with you. Look at that awful scene and tell me who is at fault?”
It took him only a minute, “My old man, of course. I didn’t do anything wrong!”
“Right,” I said. “You were just a child. A bad thing happened to you to be sure, but it was not your fault, was it?”
‘”NO…IT WAS NOT MY FAULT,” he exclaimed as though he were really getting it!!!
“Now,” I said, “take a look at that little boy there in the bathroom.” What would you like to tell him? You can now. Spirit will help you to tell him something from your heart.
Jonah looked hesitant at first, but then I saw his eyes light up just as his guides came into the room. “I want to tell him,” Jonah began. “I want to say to him, ‘little Jonah’? You don’t know me but I know you. I want you to know that I love you, and others you don’t even know love you too. You have the strength to face these awful hurdles and make your way through the roughest of tests. I am going to be watching you and I am going to keep reminding you that I love you.”
“How did that feel Jonah,” I asked. He began to cry, but these tears were good ones.
“It felt like I really helped that little boy,” he said.
“Yes, and you did help that little boy and you will continue helping him through his life,” I said with some moist eyes of my own.
“But now we may need to make trips back for others there in that home,” I said. You need to speak truth to that family. We will take our time and we will go with spirit. Your and my guides, healing angels, guardian angels, are all here to take the trips with you and make it safe. Who would be the next person you would like to speak to back there?”
His eyes filled up and he said, “Ellie, of course.” We did the meditation and were soon there in Ellie’s room. “Ask spirit,” I said, to put your words into her mind.
“Ellie? Can you hear me? I love you. I have come to tell you the truth from my heart. You are a wonderful being. I can even say now, thanks to the help from some new friends, that you are God’s child, filled with His goodness and Love. I know bad things are happening to you, but just hold on. You have angels working overtime on you. Don’t give up! Don’t let the sadness and hurt win over you. Have faith that life will bring you something good! Please, believe me. I love you.”
As Jonah spoke those words to Ellie, my angels showed her to me in spirit. She was shining and gleaming with blond hair and a full smile. In her arms were five puppies, all very much alive. On either side of her stood guardian angels and to the sides there was a great throng of angels, praising God, and proclaiming, “Only Love is real.” I was so overcome, I burst into my own tears and told Jonah the scene I was seeing in Spirit.
“Can I see her,” he said. I asked my guides and angels if they could make this possible.
“Take one hand and put it between my eyes, and the other on the top of my head. Close your eyes and ask to see Ellie.”
“I see her, I see her, I see her. I see the puppies, the puppies, all alive and well. I love you Ellie. I love you. Now you are in your true Home and only Love will be your portion. I am so happy, so happy. You are alive. YOU ARE ALIVE!”
As he saw her, the angels on either side of her began to ascend with her while the choirs of angels sang the praises of God. We continued in this state of grace for quite some time. When we came out of it, we were both shining.
Jonah Parr became an executive Vice President with his company and married very late in life to a wonderful woman. They live now on five acres in Langley BC with many dogs, cats and other beasties that flock to their light! 

Image may contain: Teresa Dopyera, smiling

Surviving a spiritual disappointment

Surviving a spiritual disappointment…It does sometimes happen in life that a spiritual leader we have trusted falls and when s/he does, it hurts a lot of people. It can happen in any religion. I think of a family I know who were devout Catholics. Everyone of their children were baptized by a beloved priest. Many years later it was discovered that that priest had been involved in child molestation. The entire congregation was hurt by this. But they did get help from others to understand that the fall of that priest did not negate God’s work in their lives. The offending priest was removed and the congregation has recovered with help. We have to realize that people can fail, but God cannot. Perhaps it would be better if we realized that the spiritual growth and healing we receive does not come from any special person but from God. All of us are children of God and all of us share the Father’s ability to extend His Love and help others. When healing comes, it comes from a family or congregation of people who extend love.

I once new a Baptist sponsored university in which one of the most beloved professors had a spiritual fall. Because all of his life had been directed to such good things and had helped so many people, that when he had his spiritual fall, people did not rush to judgment but looked to understand what psychological trouble he was having. Instead of firing him from the faculty, they made sure he got the counseling he needed to heal. In time he was able to back into teaching but at another college. Those who had been hurt by his fall were counseled and the impact on them healed.

Those of you who went to see John of God and had a blessed, loving, and even healing time, are now confused and hurt such the terrible fall from grace John has had. It may help to think of it the way I have discussed these other cases. God’s work was done by God, not by John. John the medium has been terribly damaged but in this case the medium is not the message. Many people DID in truth experience a wonderful healing time with John of God. Ram Dass even went to Abadiania to see John and he spoke about what a beautiful spiritual environment it was, so that he could compare to his own teacher in India. Ram Dass is not a man to be easily fooled. Dr. Wayne Dyer experienced a great healing through John of God and spoke to everyone about it. There was a time when good was there.

John the man has fallen and his falling has confused and hurt many people. People can fall. The Apostle Paul said,

“But [like a boxer] I buffet my body [handle it roughly, discipline it by hardships] and subdue it, for fear that after proclaiming to others the Gospel and things pertaining to it, I myself should become unfit [not stand the test, be unapproved and rejected as a counterfeit]. The Amplified Bible
1 Corinthians 9:27

People can fall. Let us not. Supposedly the wisest man in the Old Testament was Solomon. His writings even became included in Scripture. But the last thing we hear about Solomon is that he fell from the faith of Israel having gone off to worship other gods and taking foreign wives. (I Kings 11:4)

If you have been tempted to reject altogether the good experience you received under a minister who later fell, examine your heart and see if that is what God would have you do? Keep in the Light. Remember all the loving things and the love will eventually heal the pain. 

A Letter to the Father

Many of you know the story of how I went to seminary and intended to be a professor; how I felt deeply I was in the wrong place but didn’t know where the right place was. One of my dorm mates was an opera buff who had every opera record under the sun and listened to them morning, noon, and night. I listened with him for the year and a half I was there. Something about those great voices grabbed me down deep somewhere in my psyche and I bought some and began listening to opera while I was studying. Then one evening, a strange thing (for me then) happened. I clearly heard an inner voice say to me “your characters could be your sermons; the stage could be your pulpit; the theatre could be your church; the audience could be your congregation.” Now go put feet to your faith.” This shocked me! Baptists do not hear voices! Maybe Pentecostals do but not us Baptists. You have to understand that I had never had any serious voice lessons. I sang in choirs and sounded no better than anyone else. But just before I heard the voice, I remember praying almost through tears, “Father please tell me what to do. I don’t feel like I belong here.” Maybe that is why I believed it. I took a little step by faith. This was a new kind of ministry. I left seminary and got a job. When I wasn’t working I was listening to opera. This went on about six months until finally one day I opened my mouth to see if I could make a sound like those guys on the records, and out came the operatic voice I have had since! A friend came by and said “Hey, you’ve got quite a voice. You ought to enter the Met Auditions.” I didn’t know what they were but I said sure. I filled out the application, got some music for some hard bass arias and set to learning them by listening to records. I went down to sing the first level of the Met Auditions in Tulsa and had no expectations. I just sang and was named one of the winners. I was even given an apprenticeship with the Santa Fe Opera and the Tulsa Opera sponsored me and gave me grants. I thought to myself, “Gee, this opera business is a snap.” I had absolutely no social preparation to help me deal with this new profession. And I found out that not everybody would like me. I would have real enemies to fight. But I did my best, sang big roles in big houses. I made some mistakes and after singing in this world 11 years I made a personal mistake that took me off the stage. I kept thinking I would find a way to get back on, but I never did. I became a university teacher instead. But all through this era my heart was aching that I had failed in this new ministry that I had been divinely given. Friends were well meaning when they said, “It’s all in the past. Just move on!” But they didn’t understand the miracle I had been given and how deeply it had hurt me to feel I had not fulfilled what I had been given. I was still a minister at heart even when I was an opera singer.

Today, I wrote a letter to God and made a little boat with my recordings in it and my reviews, and I set it on the ocean when the tide was going out. I am going to share with you that letter.

Dearest Father,
I know that you know my thoughts and that you are here now as I type these words, but it is good for me to write to you this way. I love you with all my heart Father even though I scarcely know how to love, even scarcely know what it is. But you know me and knew me since before all time when I was and still am a part of you. I am a thought in your mind. It feels like I have been away from you a long time, but I know that is not true. I have just been dreaming a dream which to me seems long, but it really was over a long time ago. I am not making very much sense am I? I feel your heart in mine, dear Father. I have almost come for the time to leave this body and set sail again within the world of spirit. It is all a part of the dream which you can’t know because you know that I am safely inside your Mind. Thoughts leave not their thinker. But the Holy Spirit came with me into my dream. He witnessed my birth into this imaginary world. He saw how I so often thought of you. He saw as I viewed my part in my dream as a hero who would help people to remember you. He saw our Song awaken in my heart and formalize itself into a singer in this dream world. My career as an opera singer was the most important thing in my life because you gave me the gift to sing. Your Holy Spirit told me in Seminary that “my characters could be my sermons; the stage could be my pulpit; the theatre could be my church; the audience could be my congregation.” Then your Holy Spirit said to me, “Now go put feet to your faith.” I believed it Father. I knew it was True and that it came from you. I went into this strange, cruel, but wonderful world of opera and I sang with all my heart. I was surprised when some people didn’t like me, because my voice was from you. Along the way I sang as best as I could and I thought of you every time before I went on stage. I made some personal mistakes which I know you have forgiven me for. But I had a hard time forgiving myself for them. They took me out of the world of opera and took away my stage where I had my church. I felt like such a failure. I so wanted to use my voice to help others awaken. I thought my tears would never end for the loss of my career as a singer. You could not know my dream, of course, though you knew I was dreaming. But the Holy Spirit saw and felt everything that happened to me. He saw my tears and my broken heart. He saw the way I had to work in a cruel, cruel world of opera where the men who ran it were asleep in their own dreams of indifference, hatred and usury.
But Father, after the dream of opera changed, I learned more and remembered more. A new dream of awakening into love’s Presence came to me. On the shores of Burnaby Lake with beautiful ducks and geese, birds and fish, water and flowers, I remembered us more. That dream of awakening is still playing out in me. Father, I loved singing, but I give it back to you now as my gift to you. Here in this little boat that I have set adrift to the ocean, there is a computer stick, with all my songs, and all my reviews. They are my gift of thanks back to you for the song we share. Now I will finish the work I began at Burnaby Lake. I will fully remember you and see the face of Christ in all my brothers, even the dark ones who dream nightmares, and who will laugh at the silly old man who writes to God. But that is OK. I do not care. We can speak now all the time if you want Father. I have nothing on my mind but you…and my brothers because I keep seeing the face of Christ in them!

Your Loving Son,
Joseph

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Practical Mysticism

I have evolved a long way since my Southern Baptist ministerial days! I began my theological life as a liberal Southern Baptist theologian! There is a contradiction for you to ponder!! I moved to a Bultmannian, Tillichian liberal Protestant theologian, and then to an adherent of the Primordial Tradition in the school of   Rene GuenonFrithjof SchuonJulius EvolaHarvey Spencer LewisAnanda CoomaraswamyElémire ZollaAlain DanielouJean-Louis MichonGottfried LeibnizAldous Huxley, and Plato. While Plato came the closest to satisfying me, in the end he did not! That satisfaction was reserved for the modern scripture, A Course in Miracles, when it came into my contact.  It brought together the truths of Hinduism, Buddhism, Gnosticism, Perennialism and modern psychology in a unique way. It remains the most satisfying theological system I have come in contact with! Therefore, my past decade or more has been devoted to an experiment in practical application of the metaphysics of A Course in Miracles. The system is very close to Platonic and Neo-Platonic thought, yet also provides the ultimate Advaita of the Hindu Vedanta. I am an  Advaita Vedantin following the Metaphysical path of A Course in Miracles. At the practical level it has been my intention to see if I can live in the perspective and awareness of Oneness rather than the duality that is the common perception in this world. When I first approached this I spoke with my friend, Dr. Ken Wapnick, if it were possible to live a non-dualistic life in a dualistic world! He responded, “Of course! That is the purpose of A Course in Miracles. It takes a lot of hard work but it can be done.” He should know. He did it. Now that he has left his body, he has left us with an example of one who did just this in his life!

I have had some limited success in living out an awareness that is Advaita. I say “limited” because the longest I have maintained that awareness was six weeks. Yet those six weeks were the culmination to me of my theological quest. Other ACIM students have made similar attempts. The students of Tara Singh have, since his “death”, been meeting together to hold practical sessions on “Objective Thought.” That is essentially Advaita. Objective thought would not project the opposite!!! “Objective thought” would be impersonal, loving thought, shared with God! What would it be like to experience our thoughts shared with God? To me, the practical application of that would be an awareness of “not two.”  Writing about this is extremely difficult! It would take, myth, prose and poetry to approach it. I attempted to do that in a connected series of writings I called “The Beloved and I are One,” in which I used my experiences at a nearby lake to serve as an artistic attempt to convey this experience in practical mysticism. It was good enough to get me my Doctor of Theology degree, but the experiment continues, the quest goes on until I can steadily hold the thought that “the eye with which I see God is the same eye with which God sees me!” Then Peace shall reign over the storm and in stillness shall the voice of God be heard!

 

Keeping the Faith!

Keeping the Faith!

Is Faith a gift or a work? Faith is a natural property given to those who ask but you have some work to do in maintaining it! Faith asks you to keep your eyes on Jesus and do the work you were sent to do. Life is full of possible distractions and so maintaining faith is not a cakewalk. Evil and suffering are there along the way to try to steal your gaze. When the wolf is at the door you need faith more than ever but holding on to it is the hardest thing you will ever have to do. These are not idle words. I have been there. There have been many days that all I had to eat was a can of pork and beans but I still managed to give some change to the beggars.

Krishnamurti was asked, “Is it true that life will take care of you?” He responded, “Yes, but you have to give yourself over to it completely.” That would be faith, moment by moment, day by day, month by month, year by year. It is living on a razor’s edge but somehow you know that there is no other way for you to live. The only thing that makes living this way bearable is FAITH.

In the early part of my career as an opera singer I called this “floating” in life. It is more than a little ironic that I should use such a term since I never learned to swim. But others told me that learning to float in water one had to relax and trust the water. Somehow it made sense to me, so when I moved from Tulsa to the Big Apple to start a career in opera, I learned to float. I had to learn. I had no financial support to cushion me. What I had was FAITH that God himself had given me this gift of voice and had told me to sing opera. That certainty was enough to give me the faith to “float” in life. Month after month I found someway to pay the rent and eat, though often not much. Some days I had two eggs for breakfast and lunch and a large slice of pizza for dinner. One summer I sold orange juice on the streets of New York. Sometimes I got work as a bartender. But then I would get an engagement in opera and all of a sudden I had money. FAITH (Floating) was essential. Those who had talent but no faith gave up on their careers and went back home to teach.

Then there came a month when I saw no possible way to pay the rent! But there was a singing competition called the Bruce Yarnell Memorial Award for Baritones which would be held soon and it had a prize of $1,000 and the prestige of being named the best baritone in the U.S. And Canada at the mid-career level. I entered the competition. My competitors were from the New York City Opera, the Metropolitan Opera and other regional centers. I had the faith that I could win and I worked very hard to hold on to that faith. I won and paid the rent!!

Many nights I would take flight in my dreams and actually go on journeys in the spirit. One night I went up into the spirit world and came to a “class” that was being held for spirits preparing to enter life in a body. The class was about how to “float.” The students were seated on what looked like high school bleachers with dumbfounded looks on their faces. I floated right into the class and said, “Look, it’s like this. You just float,” and as a spirit I demonstrated “floating.” I had learned how to do it, not in water but in life. There have been many times I have been tempted by fear to lose faith. Saying the Lord’s Prayer is very helpful….”lead us not into temptation but deliver us from the evil one.” Who is the evil one but the one who would seduce you to lose faith? Pray to be delivered from that one, and woe to those on judgment day who choose to draw others away from faith and to the dark side! That will be a life review you wouldn’t care to attend! Jesus said of such people, “It would be better for them were a millstone tied around their neck and cast into the ocean.”

Newtonian and Quantum “Religion” Joseph Shore (copyright 2011) by Joseph Shore

Newtonian and Quantum “Religion”

Joseph Shore

(copyright 2011)

ABSTRACT:

Our world view is determined by our consciousness and affects every area of life, including religion. As we survey human attitudes towards religion we are also observing consciousness. The predominant world view since Cro-Magnon man has been the common sense one, which Newton later measured. As consciousness began to change so did the world view. The Quantum world view finally takes us out of the Newtonian world view and into a new understanding of a universe with consciousness in its deepest fabric. The changes in “religion” that this has birthed are tremendous and set the human race into a new future.

***********************

Newtonian physics has been with us a very long time. We almost take it for granted. The laws of gravity and motion are very much a part of our daily lives. The Newtonian view of the universe is a vast space filled with real particles called matter. That apple that fell on his head was “real.” In the Newtonian world view, things are separate and real. The universe is a collection of “stuff” that bumps into itself according to laws of motion and gravity. People are also seen as separate from one another as much as a bunch of rocks. In Newton’s world, time is viewed in a linear way, past, present and future all separate though related in causality. This world view is really a scientific description of the “common sense” view of reality that we work in every day. Things and people are separate and they bump and grind on one another. I am being colloquial here because this is not intended to be a lecture on physics per se, but rather an observation on how our world views affect every part of society including religion. So we would have to say that this common sense world view came into human consciousness around the time of Cro-Magnon Man, our dear ancestor. He too saw the world as bits and pieces, some of which wanted to eat him!

If we use the ancient astronaut theory, then earth has been visited many times by aliens intending to help the growth of mankind. Each time they came to a civilization they challenged the common sense view of the world to a certain extent. The civilizations on earth they visited flourished for long periods of time and enjoyed greater technology. Just try building a pyramid today! Nevertheless, their visitation and help did not move the human race out of the common sense view of the universe. Ancient man simply viewed these ancient astronauts as “gods” and viewed them as separate beings. The sense of the separation of all things spilled over into religion. Actually it had been there since early cavemen began to draw pictures of what they thought was an afterlife. From the very beginning of homosapiens “God” was viewed as a separate, big, powerful being, or group of beings, who lived somewhere in the heavens and whose favor early man wished to curry. In India, a different world view was being formed, unexamined by the West. The basic common sense world view prevailed through early Western civilization including the beloved Western mythologized version of Israel as “God’s chosen people,” who worshipped a God they called “Yahweh” and to whom they had to offer sacrifices to curry favor with him. He was a hard god to work with, impetuous and full of vengeance. He destroyed the world with a flood and then said “oops. ..I’m sorry. I won’t do it again.” But the basic, common sense world view as separateness would not allow any investigation into this “god.” It would not allow conceptions of connectedness.

Newton simply took this world view and measured how it worked. Classical Newtonian physics gives us the laws of motion and gravity by which the separate pieces of stuff (including you and me) bang into one another. WE ASSUME THIS WORLD VIEW IS TRUE BECAUSE THE PHYSICS VERIFY IT! Newton’s common sense view of the world works. The philosophical term that describes Newton’s world view is DUALISM! What comes up must go down. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Resting objects tend to stay at rest. Moving objects tend to stay in motion…and hit other objects like cars or people. It explains how you get into your car and go to the grocery store. It explains your attitude towards your noisy neighbor who has nothing in common with you. You are both so separate. The common sense world view has built all of our ideas about one another, about society, about economy, about human consciousness, which in the common sense view is the result of an electrical-chemical reaction in the brain.

When Constantine merged Christianity and Mithraism to keep peace in his army, he extended the common sense world view into the heavens in a gigantic way. God was viewed as an Emperor. (Gee, I wonder where he came up with that?) God was viewed as living far off in heaven somewhere, and all the little separate selves had to curry favor with him by joining the Roman Catholic Church, going through the rites and staying faithful to mother church their whole lives…or else this God would damn their souls to terrible punishment after death. The wickedness of this system finally roused a young priest named Martin Luther, to rebel and post his 95 theses against the Catholic Church in 1517. That began the reformation movement. Most of the sects within the movement left undisturbed the common sense view of God and the world. They just wanted to remove Catholicism.

The common sense world view as it interacted with theology gave a picture of a three-storied universe with God and Heaven at the top; earth in the middle and hell on the bottom. Every human being was created as unique and separate by God and each created person was separate from God. Each person experienced himself as imperfect and in need. People offered sacrifices to the image of gods they projected from their own consciousness. They longed for a savior. In the Judaeo-Christian tradition that consumed the West, his name was Jesus. Luther’s reformation stated that mankind did not need the rites of the Roman Catholic Church to access the grace of God that came through Jesus. Mankind only needed personal faith. By personal faith the separate individual could come near to God. That was revolutionary! Some of the more pietistic sects, the radical reformation, began to experience that they could personally experience God. The Shakers and Quakers, the Mennonites, all made a start at a new world view. Revivals took place where people shook and quaked under the power of God. This was a new sociological/theological development. The severe piety of Jonathan Edwards was met with a revival as emotional and as full of miracles and wonders as has ever been seen. Edwards was non-plussed. His own wife was having manifestations. He could not deny it. The Wesleyan Revivals, The Welsh revivals, the Cain Ridge revival in Tennessee, all brought a challenge to the common sense world view. In England and the frontier United States another huge challenge to the common sense world view came from Spiritualism and Pentecostalism. People suddenly felt the presence of God. God was no longer so far away and so separate, and the more they sensed that, the more they felt a connection one to another. It did seem in those revivals that AGAPE love was being felt and exchanged and a new world view could be just around the corner. This report from the Cain Ridge revival of 1801 makes the point:

“Although only ministers preached prepared sermons, literally hundreds of people became spontaneous exhorters, excitedly giving spiritual advice or tearful warnings. Almost anyone—women, small children, slaves, the shy, the illiterate—could exhort with great effect.

“One 7-year-old girl mounted a man’s shoulders and spoke wondrous words until she was completely fatigued. When she lay her head on his as if to sleep, someone in the audience suggested ‘the poor thing had better be laid down to rest.’ The girl roused and said, ‘Don’t call me poor, for Christ is my brother, God my father, and I have a kingdom to inherit, and therefore do not call me poor, for I am rich in the blood of the Lamb!’

“In many ways, Cane Ridge was a very human affair. At times, emotional excess reigned, and the revival split denominations and gave birth to not a few sects. It’s also clear, as historians have shown, that powerful social and cultural forces played a large role at Cane Ridge.

“Yet the Christian historian cannot help but see something else at work. What appeared at Cane Ridge looks startlingly like the events of the Great Awakening of the 1740s, and of the revivals in medieval Europe, and of the day of Pentecost in first-century Jerusalem. All were moments when people fell and whirled and praised and groaned, when faith and culture and passion were tossed together in a wild, messy, and unimaginable way—when people, at least momentarily, no longer saw God through a glass darkly but face to face.” (quoted by Mark Galli, editor of Christian History Magazine 1995)

We see these movements now as movements in consciousness which eventually even moved science!

Nineteenth century Spiritualism had birthed a new science called “Parapsychology.” What was once beyond investigation became a science!

Then came Einstein, whose theories challenged or smashed Newtonian Physics. First he showed that time was relative, and that mass and energy were equivalent by the formula E=MC2. Our ideas about the world were slowly changing. Next came Alfred North Whitehead ] (15 February 1861 – 30 December 1947). Whitehead was as great a mind as Einstein but his interest lay in the philosophy of the cosmos which he took just as scientifically as Einstein. Whitehead saw the cosmos as an organism, not a collection of stuff as Newton had. Whitehead was thinking and writing before the discovery of Quantum Mechanics, but his theories were in line with later quantum development. By this time we knew that Newton’s ideas about electrons, as solid particles, was wrong. Each electron is composed of packets of energy and each part of the packet, Whitehead termed “actual entities.” These living bursts of energy make up the universe. The upshot of Whitehead’s discovery is that consciousness is at the very foundation of the cosmos. The actual entities actually choose from possibilities offered to them by God, who is there with the actual entities as the “unique actual entity.” From eternal potentials God presents to the actual entities possibilities for choice. Here we have the beginning of A Quantum view of the cosmos. God is not far off. He is imminent within the deepest foundation of the cosmos. The cosmos is not a bunch of junk floating in dead space. It is an organism which grows by quantum choice. God is the World’s Fellow Traveler who grows and becomes more as the cosmos grows. Charles Hartshorne developed Whitehead’s philosophy into theology.

The basic tenets are:

God is not omnipotent in the sense of being coercive. The divine has a power of persuasion rather than coercion. Process theologians interpret the classical doctrine of omnipotence as involving force, and suggest instead a forbearance in divine power. “Persuasion” in the causal sense means that God does not exert unilateral control.[1]
Reality is not made up of material substances that endure through time, but serially-ordered events, which are experiential in nature. These events have both a physical and mental aspect. All experience (male, female, atomic, and botanical) is important and contributes to the ongoing and interrelated process of reality.
The universe is characterized by process and change carried out by the agents of free will. Self-determination characterizes everything in the universe, not just human beings. God cannot totally control any series of events or any individual, but God influences the creaturely exercise of this universal free will by offering possibilities. To say it another way, God has a will in everything, but not everything that occurs is God’s will.[2]
God contains the universe but is not identical with it (panentheism, not pantheism or pandeism). Some also call this “theocosmocentrism” to emphasize that God has always been related to some world or another.
Because God interacts with the changing universe, God is changeable (that is to say, God is affected by the actions that take place in the universe) over the course of time. However, the abstract elements of God (goodness, wisdom, etc.) remain eternally solid.
Charles Hartshorne believes that people do not experience subjective (or personal) immortality, but they do have objective immortality because their experiences live on forever in God, who contains all that was. Other process theologians believe that people do have subjective experience after bodily death.[3]
Dipolar theism, is the idea that God has both a changing aspect (God’s existence as a Living God) and an unchanging aspect (God’s eternal essence).

Here finally we have moved away from Newtonian Physics and Newtonian Religion. It is important to keep in mind however, that both the Newtonian view and the new Quantum view are true, but from different perspectives. Your car will still work the same. And if you go out into traffic thinking that truck in front of you is just energy, it will still flatten you as flat as a pancake. The Quantum view is more complete and it can contain within it the Newtonian view as a “special case,” by which we mean that it appears to hold true at the macro level. But the Newtonian view cannot hold the Quantum view. In the case of religions based on these systems, we have to realize that the Reformation brought us a church that is still valid, but it has a very limited perspective. Those of us involved in Quantum religion must be compassionate for our brothers who hold so tightly to their Newtonian religion. Even though they may call us bad names and pray for us as heretics, we must embrace them in love, especially when they can’t return it. It does us no good to bash them as “ignorant,” “fear-minded,” “bigoted,” et. al. The human journey takes time, in terms of consciousness, and we have the World’s Fellow Traveler to help us.

Here at last in Whitehead and Hartshorne, we have a world view where consciousness is at the very building block of reality. Reality is not hard, non-malleable stuff. It is mutated by consciousness. God is not an Emperor in the sky. God is the unique actual entity guiding quantum choice at the deepest level.

C. Robert Mesle, in his book Process Theology, outlines three aspects of a process theology of liberation:[4]

There is a relational character to the divine which allows God to experience both the joy and suffering of humanity. God suffers just as those who experience oppression and God seeks to actualize all positive and beautiful potentials. God must, therefore, be in solidarity with the oppressed and must also work for their liberation.
God is not omnipotent in the classical sense and so God does not provide support for the status quo, but rather seeks the actualization of greater good.
God exercises relational power and not unilateral control. In this way God cannot instantly end evil and oppression in the world. God works in relational ways to help guide persons to liberation.

Process theology affirms that God is working in all persons to actualize potentialities. In that sense each religious manifestation is the Divine working in a unique way to bring out the beautiful and the good. Additionally, scripture and religion represent human interpretations of the divine. In this sense pluralism is the expression of the diversity of cultural backgrounds and assumptions that people use to approach the Divine. The Christ of process theology does not represent a hypostasis of divine and human persona. Rather God is incarnate in the lives of all humans when they act according to a call from God. Jesus fully and in every way responded to the call of God and so the person of Jesus is theologically understood to be “the divine Word in human form.” Jesus was not God-man in essence, but fully identified with God at all moments of life.

Now as this monumental work was being carried out, at the same time a French Jesuit Paleontologist named Pierre Teilhard De Chardin (May 1, 1881 – April 10, 1955) was coming up with a cosmic view of his own. He was both a respected scientist and theologian and just the right man for the job. He viewed God as active within the development of the natural order. As with Whitehead, God was in the process. De Chardin saw God evolving nature and man through evolution and consciousness changing towards an OMEGA POINT in evolution, which is Christ consciousness and Christ likeness.

Here we have two parallel streams, Whitehead/Hartshorne, and De Chardin, who were both scientists and theologians challenging Newtonian religion with new views of an imminent God working within a consciousness controlled cosmos at the deepest level.

Then came Quantum Mechanics and a full quantum world view. In this world view, past, present and future are all displayed at once in the cosmos. In the quantum universe, consciousness is changing the cosmos. We first found out about this as we noticed that light could be both a wave function and a particle. Light functions as a wave form of potential until it comes in contact with our sensory organs which collapse the wave into a particle. Then we learned that the observer changes the experiment. Our consciousness during observation changes the experiment. We are not detached from everything as poor Newton thought.

Then we learned about “entanglement.” Quantum systems can become entangled through various types of interactions. If entangled, one object cannot be fully described without considering the other(s). They remain in a quantum superposition and share a single quantum state until a measurement is made.

The implications of entanglement began to be explored by Quantum Physicists themselves. Finally, science and religion were catching up to one another. Actually two other elements in thinking were working in parallel and making contributions.

The most influential theologian of the twentieth century was Paul Tillich. Tillich united philosophy and theology into one. This was quite remarkable since they had previously been enemies. Tillich was the first Christian theologian to offer an Eastern view of God. Tillich boldly proclaimed that God did not exist. God was existence itself. God was not a particular, personal being or he would be just a being alongside others; perhaps the most powerful being but still a being alongside others. Tillich, drawing from the deep well of the East, referred to God as the ground of all being, or being itself’

Tillich offered the West a revolution against the monarchical monotheism of the past; the literal Yahweh or Jehovah, or the Constantinian Imperial god. In so doing he defied the West’s most cherished theology of St. Anselm, Thomas Aquinas, Duns Scotus, and William of Ockham. He truly opened the eyes of the West towards the East which for three thousand years had understood God abstractly. As you can imagine, fundamentalists of all persuasions were quick to attack Tillich. He had messed with their most cherished literal beliefs.

Two of Tillich’s most important books The Courage to Be and Dynamics of Faith were published in 1952, just at the same time other writers were bringing the wisdom of the East into America. This migration of Eastern thought to the West has been well documented and need not be rehearsed here.

Perhaps the most important of the writers involved in this education of the West was Alan Watts. Watts had begun as an Anglican priest with an ear for the East. At first he tried to find a happy syncretism of the Eastern wisdom with Anglicanism. But happy it was not and soon “Father” Watts left the church to become his own man. In a vast panoply of books, tracts, and lectures, he became the most skillful popularizer of Eastern wisdom for the West. He was not a lightweight thinker but he disliked formal theology and philosophy and preferred to find his own course. He was not a “joiner” but a commenting observer. His books are brief and have more of the nature of Zen koans than of belief systems. Deeply suspicious of all formal religions, he did not want anyone to “believe” his books. He wrote in a way to “scratch the inner itch to know.” He wrote to reveal truth rather than hide it in complex forms. His forms are those of witticisms, Zen koans, and story-telling, all designed for the reader to be able to get the point. “Substance” found it hard to hide itself in Alan Watts’ form. He could not have conceived of any “student” re-reading his books hundreds of times in search of deeper meanings. He would have been amazed at such stupidity. He often said that every mass should end with a solemn burning of the Bible, because you should have gotten the message already and when you get the message you hang up the phone! You don’t build a shrine around it!

In 1964 he wrote an extraordinary book called Beyond Theology – The Art of Godmanship. In it he used a new hermeneutic to offer a fresh analysis of Christianity. He used a hermeneutic he called “The Chinese box.” The term is taken from the construction of boxes within boxes. As a hermeneutic this meant that Watts was going to look at Christianity from the perspective of the East, purely as an artistic and enlightening endeavor. In a relatively short work he made clear the fallacies of monarchical monotheism, the problem of seeing oneself as an ego, and the solutions the East offered. Christianity was reinterpreted in light of Taoism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Zen. The result was an explosion of meaning in the minds of the Western readers. Christians, especially fundamentalists, were outraged that anyone would try to “explain them.” Persecution they could stand. What they could not stand was that they should be explained!

Another movement in consciousness awakening took place in 1975 when Dr. Raymond Moody published his first book, Life after Life, a collection of stories and musings on the experiences of people who have been clinically dead but later were revived to tell about it. They spoke of leaving their bodies, floating above the doctors; being drawn into a tunnel and coming out into an area of light that was also love; being met by dead relatives, experiencing a life review in the presence of a being who knew everything about everything. They experienced a love so deep it made existence on earth seem mundane and shallow. Soon a whole fleet of doctors and scientists were studying the NDE. For old doctors practicing medicine out of the mechanistic Newtonian view, these experiences were severe threats to their whole system of thought. They tried to explain them away as hallucinations brought on by oxygen starvation, but none of their explanations held water. An NDE researcher named P.M.H. Atwater published a book in 1999 called Future Memory, which I consider a truly important book in the 20th century. Atwater showed that survivors of near death experiences can experience a brain shift. When they return to this world they may have experiences that shatter Newtonian views of time. They may pre-experience future events. This would be impossible in the Newtonian system but not in the Quantum system. There, past, present, and future are all available for perusal.

New doctors with new medical models based on the Quantum view came forth, like Dr. Larry Dossey: “I used to believe that we must choose between science and reason on one hand, and spirituality on the other, in how we lead our lives. Now I consider this a false choice. We can recover the sense of sacredness, not just in science, but in perhaps every area of life.”

– Larry Dossey, M.D.

from Reinventing Medicine

Dr. Dossey and others like him have shown that healing at a distance does work and that it works by connection in consciousness. As consciousness becomes more aware of its movement, more of the Quantum world moves into our every day Newtonian world. The Quantum view of “entanglement” has moved into Main Street in an awareness of connectivity between individual consciousnesses. This movement is accelerating and will grow our brains bigger and better to enable us to process a much greater reality than we ever imagined.

During this discussion of the universe, there is not one consensus whether we can call it “real” or “unreal.” It is part of both. There is a universal quantum wave which collapses into sensory data as we observe it, and as we observe it, it changes and grows.

Soon the new Western views of the East, and the information on near death experiences, merged into the new Quantum view. A whole fleet of books flew out of publishing houses combining these elements: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, The Tao of Physics, The Medium, the Mystic and the Physicist and hundreds like them.

Dr. Fritjof Capra became one of the educators in the new Quantum reality. Dr. Fred Alan Wolf, another Quantum Physicist, became a popular educator to the new world view. Consciousness was presented as the controller of the cosmos. “As fantastic as it sounds, the new physics called quantum mechanics posits that there exists, side by side with this world, another world, a parallel universe, a duplicate copy that is somehow slightly different yet the same. And not just two parallel worlds, but three, four or even more! In each of these universes, you, I and all the others who live, have lived, will live, and will ever have lived, are alive! (Wolf 1985).”

Here we have the final breaking away from the small, limited Newtonian view of reality. As people became more aware, consciousness began to change the world. Isn’t this the essence of what Whitehead taught in his Process Philosophy? Now, all of a sudden, consciousness changing systems are everywhere. J.Z. Knight channeled a master called Ramtha and started a school. Suddenly there were channelers everywhere. Psychics were no longer viewed as fake. Even shows on television and movies began to reflect the change. As consciousness became aware of its own movement there was a cosmic speed up! New churches developed out of the Quantum model, new spirituality. If you practiced “religion” you were seen as practicing a Newtonian based older theology. If you practiced “spirituality” you were seen as practicing from a Quantum model.

There is always a drag on evolution. Within the evolution of consciousness we grow as a society (again following Whitehead). The drag on this speed-up of consciousness evolution has not come so much from Christianity, as one might have thought, but from a powerful form of social manipulation known as “America pop culture.” American pop culture tried to replace serious thinking. Superficiality and hedonism were offered as the only needs in life. But even pop culture has been infiltrated by consciousness. New Quantum churches arose in Los Angeles. Psychics, channelers, mediums, all sprouted up in L.A. Now the pop culture is being changed. The movie, “What the bleep do we know” had a tremendous impact. J.Z. Knight channeled Ramtha for it and Quantum physicists were brought in to clarify Quantum mechanics in an amusing and enlightening way. It is a must see movie.

One of the new spiritual texts called A Course in Miracles was scribed from 1965-1972 by a research Freudian psychologist named Helen Schucman. The work claimed to be from Jesus and was intended to re-write Christianity, at least for Helen.

Dr. Helen Schucman was a research psychologist at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital which was a part of Columbia University’s School of Medicine. She had only one other colleague in her department, Dr. William Thetford who had hired Helen. Helen had a troubled childhood and developmental years. Helen’s parents were half Jewish but neither practiced their faith. Helen’s mother seems to have resented her Jewish faith and experimented with other spiritual paths. Her father was not interested in religion at all. Helen seemed continually to recall an experience that happened to her in toddlerhood which became a symbol through her life of anxiety. She asked her father to teach her Judaism but he was not interested. For a while Helen identified herself as a Jew. Her parents left her care in the hands of a Nanny who was a Catholic and Helen went with her to mass. She was fascinated with the mass and its forms. She later visited Lourdes and was tremendously impacted. At various times she experimented with Christian Science and with Baptist Protestantism. Her family’s maid was a Baptist who read the Bible to Helen frequently. At her maid’s encouragement, Helen was baptized when she was 13 years old. However, after her baptism she soon stopped going to church, saying “It was no use. I do not have faith.” She became an agnostic and then an angry atheist. She completed her PhD in psychology in 1957 from New York University and the following year was hired by Dr. William Thetford to join him in the department of medical psychology at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. They worked together for seven years in an environment that Helen called “oppressive.” Her relationship with Bill was clouded with all sorts of personality clashes and personal agendas. Finally, in June 1965 Bill gave a little lecture to Helen that “there must be a better way to work together than this and I am determined to find it.” Instead of attacking, Helen said, “You’re right Bill. We’ll find it together.”

In June of 1965 Helen began to have psychic experiences and lucid dreams. She reported these all to Bill. In one dream she was in a boat floating down a canal. There was a hook in the boat and she reached into the water with it and snagged a big chest. On the chest was the word “Aesculapius” (which was the name of the Greek god of healing). She entered a big cave and opened the chest. Inside was a big parchment scroll which she unrolled. In the middle were the words “God Is.”

This psychic period ended as abruptly as it began. Then later in 1965 Helen began to hear an “inner voice.” She told this to Bill who encouraged her to write down whatever the voice said and they would look at it together. Helen was very ambivalent about this process. She prided herself on being a scientist, not someone who heard inner voices. She was conservative in psychological theory, by her own words, and a Freudian. Eventually she gave in and wrote down the text as she heard it. The voice kept saying, “This is a course in miracles. Please take notes.” Helen, after all, was a teacher in a school of medicine. From 1965-1972 she took down the whole dictation. The text from October 21, 1965 – October 10, 1968; the workbook for students: May 26,1969 – February 18,1971; the manual for teachers, April 12,1972 – September 71, 1972 Later a Preface was written and A Clarification of Terms.

The Course seems to have helped many people, including me.

“The Secret,” both as a book and as a movie, has had a tremendous impact. The relationship between thought and sensory manifestation was explored, showing that matter is a manifestation of thought! How Quantum! How unlike Newton? Near death experiences keep growing and getting fuller. The veils that separate the many quantum worlds are being thinned by our conscious intention to do so, to grow, to know. And our ideas about God are growing. In “What the bleep do we know” God is defined as “all spirit everywhere, existing in superposition.”

Now consciousness is zooming and booming. We have set for ourselves a goal of enormous consciousness shift which we believe will begin Dec. 21, 2012. It doesn’t matter about the Mayans. This is a date that we have set for us as a species. What may happen? It is all in our intentions. The veils between the quantum worlds may vanish so that we can experience our other selves in other worlds. We may make first contact with superior beings. We may make the shift and “feel” ourselves as part of God. It is a new day, a new universe, a new God, and we are all growing together.