An Open Letter to People

Dear Everybody,

For a lot of people I know, today’s shootings in a Connecticut elementary school are, cumulatively, one more reason not to trust humanity or see the good in people. Believe me, I understand. Just last night, a friend and I were watching a documentary on Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma City bombing of 1995, and it was not easy to stay calm about an event nearly twenty years past. And if one follows the news, there are numerous stories which can make us sad, angry, and confused. How do people do these things? How does society — that is to say, us — allow them to happen?

I will not, however, allow my faith to be shaken. We cannot forget the countless acts of good and compassionate people, large and small of scale, going on all the time. We cannot allow our hearts to harden at the sight of blood, but instead let our hearts be softened by the hurt of others.

Of course, for the moment, maybe it is enough to remember those who have lost from this event, and remember those in our lives whom we love. But when you go back out into the world tomorrow, or after your weekend of holding your loved ones tightly, do so with all of the caring you can. Violence is not fought by violence, but increased by it; violence is only defeated by peace and trust in what is good in us. So, I’ll see you out there. Say hello. We’re all in this together.

Aum Peace Peace Peace

Honesty in Blogging

Whether or not you have arrived here by way of my now-defunct blog, The Magical Messiah, it is best for me to quickly explain the purpose of this blog.

I have never been one to blog seeking an audience. Don’t get me wrong; my goal is not to not have an audience, either. However, I write mostly to help in organizing my own thoughts; if I can put something down in such a way that other people can see what I’m getting at, then my thoughts are at least somewhat clear. Thus, anything I write is not intended to be a statement of conclusion or finality, but rather a strong expression of “where I am at, right now” in my approach to any given particular. This brings me around to why I’ve started this blog and abandoned my other one: The Magical Messiah is no longer “where I’m at”, and I would have to delete the whole thing and start from scratch to reflect that shift. Still, there’s some stuff on there that I think is still good, or might still be useful to somebody, and very little I would like to disown. Instead, I’m just creating a clear point of separation. Let the past be what it is, but I’m no longer in it.

This blog, then, reflects the measure of peace I have gained in finally admitting to myself and others that I have embraced Sanātana Dharma (what is popularly, though not entirely accurately, known as “Hinduism”) by way of intense study of important Western writers in Perennial Philosophy. I don’t see this as a repudiation of my former Christianity, but as a blossoming of it. I have not abandoned Jesus but have taken a broader and, I think, deeper view of who and what He is. This has led me inexorably to conclude that I am now where I have felt drawn for years: nondual Saivism. Hermetism and Gnosticism were stepping stones from virtual nihilism through a sort of “New Age” pantheism to mitigated dualism, and into pure nondualism.

Let me emphasize that I do not hold myself above the authentic religious and initiatory traditions through which I have come to reach this point. I can only speak honestly about the road I have taken. I know many men and women personally who are ardent practitioners of Gnostic Christianity, contemplative Christianity, esoteric Hermetism, Kabbalah, Buddhism, and many other traditions besides, and I have nothing but respect for them and their path; there are many paths, but one Way.

All of that said, this is a blog about Perennial Wisdom in Her many forms, but more specifically about my own journey in Dharma. Really, they amount to the same thing (but I’ll get into that more as time goes by).

Thanks for stopping by, and I hope that something of my journey can be of help in yours.

Aum Shanti Shanti Shanti