Questions and Reflections VIII

Kindness, understanding, energy, joyfulness, depth, creativity and soulfulness are gems when they can be found in friends. I prefer friends who are active in our relationship but also unfazed if demands in our lives keep us out of touch for a time. I love to be challenged by friends who seek wisdom and knowledge and are evolving. But what most thrills me in a friendship is the ease of understanding, the mutual passion and spark of mystery that collide in the best moments with friends.

Pause for a moment, and write a haiku about what’s around you.
Dim lit sanctity,
cathode glow and headphone hum,
simple connectivity.

If you could design a religion, what would it look like?
As a foundation, I would set the religion in a framework that could include as much of our knowledge as possible, especially embracing developmentalism so that the religion could be a home for every station of life, from the prerational to the transrational. Mysticism would be central, as would an embrace of technology and health in all dimensions of our being. Evolution and involution would be fully embraced and give flavour to the lives of the religion’s participants throughout their development.

What qualities do you seek in a partner?
Kindness, an embrace of the Beautiful, the Good and the True, intelligence, joyfulness and presence are all very important to me in a partner. But the most important trait in a partner is engagement in evolution. To be in mutual growth and mutual challenging is vital for a romantic relationship to flourish over time, I believe. I wouldn’t want a partner who wouldn’t be able to join me on any step of the path before me and I wouldn’t want a partner who wouldn’t push me beyond every limit I have as she expanded her own boundaries.

What do you believe about the state of the environment?
I believe our enviroment is in a mode of shifting that endangers humans and other life in a substantial way, and that we have to take responsibility for the impact we have. Some of the warnings are overblown and some of the solutions as well, but there’s little question as to the presence of real danger.
I believe the overall thrust of the arguement for the existance of global warming is valid. The degree of humans’ impact can be debated, but the fact that the earth is warming is quite solidly established. Stopping global warming is nearly impossible, so I think we need to look into ways to cope with this change and save as many lives as we can in the turbulence this will bring.
Outside of global warming, I am convinced that we are quite irresponsible in many of our practices and do harm ourselves and other life tremendously. Pollution and other waste create a very real threat to our wellbeing and the survival of many of nature’s most beautiful creations.
We have a desperate need for strong environmental stewardship to preserve the best of our world and to advance it wisely. I’m heartened by a lot of work being done to protect the world, and hold a cautious optimism even as we stumble on. Life is resiliant beyond imagining and humans especially so, so I do believe we can act in time to save much of what is at stake.

How can we collectively grow a greener marketplace?
Primarily, I believe we need wise business leadership that can place the formation of a product or service in a framework that includes environmental considerations. The general public is not yet as responsive as it needs to be to influence markets directly, so a leadership that cares about the enviroment and can form superior business practices is the only practical option I see. Making sustainable and healthy business the standard in the marketplace will be a wonderful shift and has to be an inside job until, or so that, a large number of people catch up.

You’re losing your most valued trait. What would you do?
My ability to evolve is my most valued trait, so it’s incredibly hard to imagine life without that; it’s in our very nature to transcend and include, afterall. I would be shattered and hopeless at first. But what would I do? I imagine I’d attempt to create meaning and live as best I could as I am. Translation is a large part of what we do in life, so I would attempt to find the healthiest and most beneficial way to act from this stage of my life.

What’s your favorite natural environment? Why?
From my childhood to now, I’ve been drawn to spend quietude on rocky shores. There’s an incredible balance between the rugged rocks and the crashing waves that has brought me solace and inspiration for a long time.
While growing up my favourite event of each summer would be camping near the coast in Parrsboro. I loved the imposing cliffs, the mysterious caves and the stories of a prehistoric world that fossils had brought forth. Finding amethyst or some ancient tree trunk enchanted me as much as the roaring ocean and the life between it and the cliffs.
Now I take time to both share coastlines with those I love and to spend time in contemplation and meditation in that environment. In those places where fluid power and aged resiliance meet, the timeless also slips in and surprises us now and then with our own Self.

What’s your favorite bookstore section? Why?
It’s a tie between spirituality and philosophy. I love reading about mysticism, especially meditation; being able to augment my meditation practice or at least inspire it is exciting. So too is challenging and reshaping the scope of my worldview, so picking up a book by Ken Wilber or another exciting philosopher always ranks high in my list of favourite things to do.

What do you do to recharge?
Long, solitary hikes in quiet places with a session of meditation in the midst of that are the best recharge for me. When I am feeling drained I usually have a need for time alone and for physical exertion, often to the point near collapse. Hiking serves this best, allowing for contemplation and being in an environment that can excite me in ways my usual one does not.

“Starting today I will…”
Begin to cut out distractions from my life. Anything that does not serve my growth or enable me to live well will have to be at the very least minimalized as I move forward.Too often I allow insignificant matters to take away from my efforts in the areas I am most passionate about and care most deeply for.

If you could send a message to the world, what would you say?
I’m have to go with my favourite song lyric, “Question your answers, Truth has no anger,” from Collective Soul’s “Blame.” To move into a stance of questioning is always beneficial and is perhaps one of the few steps we can take as a world to move out of prerational modes and move into a rational, worldcentric space and beyond.

What section of the newspaper do you read first?
I don’t read a physical newspaper anymore but instead go to a number of online news sources and aggregators. The first main topic I look at is usually national politics in my own country (Canada) and follow that with international news. I suppose this is because I like to take in the biggest picture possible at first and then fill in gaps.

When was the last time you got lost? What happened?
Earlier this month I was exploring the woods around Long Lake and became lost for a while. It was actually a lot of fun to move through woods with no paths, making my way over and under fallen trees, having my clothes and hair stuck on branches and finding myself in other challenging moments.

Where do your beliefs come from?
Every experience I’ve had has shaped my beliefs. I try to remain in a space where I’m conscious of my beliefs, but they still arise based on what directly happens to me, my cultural embeddedness, learning from media, loved ones and surely other factors. I try to shape my beliefs based on the highest criteria I can, and constantly test them with new knowledge and new experiences. It’s my hope I can make them as fluid and responsive to what is as possible.

Fill in the gaps: If I only knew… then…
If only I knew of a way to earn a living while being location-independent then I would live a nomadic life. I’ve long wanted a location-independent income source so that I could give in to my wanderlust and spend my time travelling. Living that life would be liberating, I imagine, and enable me to live in the way I wish to.

If you could design a school, what would it be like?
I’d create a school that could be very mindful of development and thus responsive to the station of life students are in while instilling the many dimensions of learning, discipline and understanding available to us. Striking a balance between specialization and overall readiness for the world, I would hope for this school to produce dynamic and adaptable young people who are prepared for a life of learning and growth.

What do birthdays mean to you?
I don’t place a lot of emphasis on birthdays and I actually find it hard to remember my own age often. I’m perfectly happy to celebrate my birthday, but usually I observe it in a lowkey way because it doesn’t hold a lot of significance to me. I do take time in December, both for my birthday and for the new year, to reflect on the past year and appreciate the changes my life has held.

What do you appreciate most about your mother?
Pinpointing one aspect of my mother that I appreciate most was hard, but I do believe it’s her constant ability to be supportive. While never blindly pushing me to do whatever I wanted, she has always been there to offer guidance and encouragement when I needed it. I’m thankful for all she offered me, but the sturdy support is what I most treasure.

If you could design a holiday, what would it be?
Meditation Day springs to mind. Meditation is one of the most vital tools we have across all the great traditions and I believe it should be celebrated, exalted and practiced by everyone, from athiests to Christians to transhumanists.

What do you love most about where you live?
I live in a beautiful and vibrant city. Halifax is not a large city, but it has a life that many people overlook. I love to spend time on its streets, in its parks and among the many people it holds. There is always some new secret it is revealing to me and I am always surprised by the depth of its history and promise. I’ve had so many enriching experiences here that it has become part of the very fabric of my identity. This will be true, I imagine, whereever I am.

What purpose does money serve in your life?
As a vacuum? I do have far less money than I would like, but it’s still a great tool in nearly everything I do. Where would I sleep, what would I eat, and how would I communicate without the humble amount I live on? I consider myself blessed to be living in a time of such abundance, even though I’m often frustrated that I barely make ends meet.

How might you start to resolve a current conflict in your life?
One of my biggest conflicts is between my committment to my practice and the intrusions of matters that draw my attention away from it. One of the main ways to resolve this will be to create greater structure in my life and set clear boundaries for when I will be practicing and working on the various aspects of my life I wish to. It’s easier said than done, but I am working on it.

What do you really want?
I want freedom and communion. I want to slip out of the narrow self I confine myself in and step ever more fully into Spirit. I want to be passionately engaged with others in a mutual dance of love, boundlessness, evolution and ecstasy. I want a life of service and mystery.

11 comments on “Questions and Reflections VIII

  1. I am glad that you finally posted answers to the zaadz questions 🙂 It is always so interesting to read your opinions on these important matters.

  2. I am glad that you finally posted answers to the zaadz questions 🙂 It is always so interesting to read your opinions on these important matters.

  3. On, “If you could design a religion . . . ” -> Have you considered the possibility that beliefs themselves are their own stumbling blocks? Once you believe something, you interpret the world through that lens, which to further beliefs and so on. Exempli gratia: If, like our ancestors, you believe that the sun has been eaten by a dragon, and you decide to try and frighten it away with noise or arrows – with the amazing result of the sun's return – you end up believing that every eclipse you need to shoot some arrows. Or bang on some drums. So strong are these beliefs that these traditions persist in some cultures to this day! If I were to design a religion, it would not contain beliefs. It would simply be a method of developing – and testing! always testing! – working knowledge, and never assuming that any piece of knowledge is absolute. I know this sounds a lot like science, and I guess it is – so my answer to the question is really just for those who can't let go of the need to believe – a placeholder while useful knowledge can still progress.
    -Q

  4. Sure, beliefs are problematic, but utterly essential. We can not progress through the stages of development in life without passing though mythic-membership or literal belief structures. It's simply not possible to reach those higher levels where you gain access to rational and transrational capacities. Everyone is born at square one and must at some point be embedded in beliefs in order to grow to higher stages beyond them. You and I are able to move past beliefs but only because we once held them. All of us must be shepherded through and beyond beliefs somehow, so a religion of value must have both beliefs and a method to move beyond them.

  5. Sure, beliefs are problematic, but utterly essential. We can not progress through the stages of development in life without passing though mythic-membership or literal belief structures. It's simply not possible to reach those higher levels where you gain access to rational and transrational capacities. Everyone is born at square one and must at some point be embedded in beliefs in order to grow to higher stages beyond them. You and I are able to move past beliefs but only because we once held them. All of us must be shepherded through and beyond beliefs somehow, so a religion of value must have both beliefs and a method to move beyond them.

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