Key Seven – Spiritual Truth is Necessarily Given in Symbolism

Remember that when we talk and think in symbols we are placing something

between ourselves and reality – something protective, interpretive and

significant, but something nevertheless veiling and hiding.

The Master Djwahl Kuhl

 

Merriam Webster defines the word symbol as a noun: an action, object, event etc., that expresses or represents a particular idea or quality. Another definition I found was “a letter, group of letters, character, or picture that is used instead of a word or group of words.”

When we think of symbols, most of us think of pictograms and hieroglyphs but that is just one way of using symbols. A glyph generally looks like the object it represents. Language is a complex symbolic system in which the symbols do not look like the objects (or ideas) they represent. Words are symbols made of symbols, because letters are symbols too. The letters represent sounds which when uttered together can represent not only an object but a concept.

The word automobile doesn’t look like a car, but that is what we all get from the word because of our common experience in the world. Automobile simply means “moves by itself” but we have come to associate it throughout our culture as a car. It is a concept because it represents more than just one car but the idea of all cars. This concept of “car” means something slightly different to each person who hears or uses the word. The average driver has one interpretation, and the engineer has another, based on the diversity of their experience, but there is enough common experience for them to communicate about a car.

How deep does this idea go? That same car can represent success or failure to an individual. Other “status symbols” can make you feel success or achievement. Your entire life can be seen as symbolic of a certain kind of struggle to those around you or, if you gain notoriety to the country, or the world. Story tellers can use this symbolic language to teach us a moral through the life experiences of a fictional character, or select specific events in the life of a real person to get a certain type of point across. Some people may readily see the back story as it unfolds and others may need the author to explain it through the denouement.

We all see the same movie but walk away with a different impression. The life experience we bring to the theatre colors the way we interpret the story. This is what the writers of scripture and fable capitalize on when transmitting certain types of truth. When we move into the arena of faith, what is being transmitted by the backstory is the real story. When the idea is abstract, or as in the case of spiritual truth, must be experienced personally, a symbolic transmission of the truth is necessary. For instance, we cannot prove, or even define God. By most definitions it is indefinable (oddly enough). Even labeling it with the word God is a limitation so the Hebrew faith refers to the ultimate creator as “he about whom naught can be said.” Lao Tsu tells us that “the Tao that can be discussed is not the real Tao.”

If we cannot discuss it, or speak about it without distorting the idea, the only thing we have left is to point at it in a vague way from a number of different perspectives and hope the point gets through. For some people it will become clear and for some it will not. Some will gain a faint understanding and never see the whole picture. Some will not realize the story has a point at all. That is the continuum of understanding of spiritual truth. To someone who is unaware of the use of symbolism, or does not have the keys to unlock their meaning the truth remains veiled.

These are the people who will only see the literal meaning of a scripture. They see The New Testament as the story of the life and times of a Rabbi in Palestine. This can offer inspiration to their lives because of the things he went through and the experiences they have had throughout their lives may relate to his in some meaningful way. For others, with “eyes that see and ears that hear,” a deeper meaning is revealed. In the case of The New Testament, we have a story about the enlightenment of not only that particular Rabbi, but the path it takes for every single human being as we evolve our understanding about ourselves and the universe we share. If you are curious about this idea it is treated at length in my father Anthony J. Fisichella‘s last book. It was the final book of his Trilogy, “One Solitary Life” and it is titled “The Christ Epoch.”

There is another aspect to this use of symbolism when it relates to spiritual truth. The awareness of these ideas will empower someone in very specific ways. These truths can be used for the general good or selfish gain (evil). Power in the wrong hands is dangerous, so in order to preserve and communicate the truth it must be veiled from the profane. In the words of Geoffrey Hodson the symbolic presentation is use to “both conceal and reveal” the truth.

It is with these ideas in mind that we will explore the presentation of these spiritual ideas within the pages of my upcoming book “Spiritual Practicality – The Seven Keys to the Mysteries of the Ageless Wisdom.”

One Solitary Life – The Christ Epoch… is here

christ-epoch-cover1Well, Its done. I just signed off the galley for the last book in the One Solitary Life series, authored by my father Anthony J. Fisichella. It took him 10 years to write and it took 4 years and 10 days after he passed for me to complete this for him. The work itself is not finished because it has become my own. I will be doing whatever I can to make people aware of these teachings for the rest of my life, and by no means will it be limited to my fathers teachings. He never laid claim to this as anything he created. We all simply create our interpretation of these kinds of teachings and if we are able to help people understand better by that interpretation it has value. I can say it had value for me but only you can decide whether it is valuable to you.

It will probably be two weeks or so before I hold it in my hands but the book is done. An idea fostered in my fathers mind and nurtured in his heart for over 40 years. The book that became a trilogy out of the necessity of clarity. This is what he set out to write, the story of Jesus as interpreted by an esoteric mind. The mind of a metaphysician focused on understanding the hidden meaning behind the greatest story ever told. Not great because it is about Jesus, or The Christ (a distinction you will understand after reading the book) but because it is about each and every one of us.

My father always maintained that the story in The New Testament is true, even if it was to be proven beyond a doubt that Jesus never lived. Think about that. Even if the central character is proven fictional the story in its symbolic interpretation is unchanged. That is one of the things that make scripture timeless.

Dr. Annie Bessant said in her book Esoteric Christianity (this is a paraphrase because now I can’t find it) “Christianity is an ocean into who’s shallows a child could wade, with depths that would drown a giant”. If the New Testament is really just a historical account, its not a very good one. it contradicts itself and skips around leaving huge holes. If its seen as the hero’s journey and something we can aspire to… If its really about you and I… If it is a single view of a universal truth which is told and retold throughout the religious teachings of the world… WOW

My dad spent his life teaching this. He did a presentation on this whole subject a couple of years before he died that we were lucky enough to have recorded. It was two hours long and covers much of what the One Solitary Life Trilogy is about. Its listed on Higher-Ground.com and there is a link below. If anyone would like a jump on things. Get the CDs and if you do it before the book is released I will send you book III for free.

http://www.higher-ground.com/audio_one_solitary_life.html

All Saints Day

We have just passed All Saints Day, or All Hallows Day, which means little to most people, even those who know it as the day after Halloween. It is a Holiday designated to honor all of the saints who don’t have their own day. It could be argued that the day was picked in order to combat the revelry of Halloween when it was still called Sawin (Samhain), a Gaelic holiday celebrating the coming of winter. It simply means November and marked the end of the harvest. Throughout the history of agricultural communities this was a scary time of year, because whether the harvest was good or bad you had what you were going to live on for the course of the winter.

Celebrations varied and especially in modern times many ghoulish movies and other Hollywood type treatments have changed what the Halloween festival has become, but that is not why I am writing. I like the fun of Halloween. You get to go a little crazy in ways that other holidays don’t offer. In a way its more fun than Christmas or New Years eve.

All Saints Day, on the other hand never meant anything to me until 4 years ago. That was the day my father, Anthony Fisichella passed away in the wee hours of the morning, literally on Halloween night. I found out about two years later, from Liz Sterling who was a very intimate friend of his and with whom I have grown very close, that he had always said, “If you want to die, do it on Halloween, it is the easiest time because the veil is the thinnest between the worlds”. I had never heard him say it personally, and it is little more than an interesting tidbit. I am not saying he predicted his demise but I had always thought of his death as voluntary.

He had a severe Anurism right at his heart and had undergone surgery, which he survived. The problem was that he was in there for more than twice the amount of time that they had presumed would be necessary. This meant that he could have had some very severe complications in his recovery. I believe that during that kind of anesthesia part of you is conscious anyway but detached from the body and there is anecdotal evidence for this which we have all heard. When he came back into this broken body he would not have been very happy about it and I think if he had a choice he would have moved on, but that is not why I’m writing either.

He left behind the unpublished series of three books, One Solitary Life, with his literal dying wish that we make sure they were published. It took about a year before I could really work on them because I would hear his voice in my head as I read. Its like he reads to me. At first it made it impossible to work on his stuff, but has since become a comfort. I am not implying anything supernatural here. I am sure any number of people reading perhaps a letter written by a  loved one would have the same experience. A close friend of dad’s told me the same thing when we finally got the first book out. This is why I am writing. Not only have the first two books been published, but we are on the verge of getting book III.

Along the way Dad’s work has become my work and we have released his Well of Wisdom series along with an audio lecture on the One Solitary Life Books. I have begun speaking and been transformed in ways I did not anticipate. I never thought I would be publishing books, but even as I committed to that I had no idea of the effect the teachings themselves would have on me. I joined the Theosophical Society and the Theosophical Order of Service as well as the Arcane School in New York. Most importantly, I am living my life differently, and with more success because of the things I’m learning. I want to spread this info far and wide and in a sense, three years later, I am just getting started.

So, while it won’t change All Saints Day for anyone else, I thought it was worth mentioning that even though it has taken 4 years to do, we are near the end of the task of finishing Dad’s work and I have already begun my own. It will be the moment of a lifetime when I hold “The Christ Epoch” in my hand. An idea that started in my fathers mind crystallized on the physical plane for the benefit of whatever portion of humanity stands ready for his message. A message that has already transformed his son.

Namaste

Doug

The Next Few Steps – My lesson in the Labyrinth

I have been struggling with the tech aspects of getting my newsletter out for Higher-Ground.com

Its really more of a pain then it should be. There has been so much going on that we just posted it to the site and I never got my own article in, so here it is.


The next few steps… my lesson in the Labyrinth

When I was in Crestone with Liz Sterling earlier this spring I had the opportunity to walk the magnificent Labyrinth at the Temple of Consciousness. Just as an aside the Temple of Consciousness was originally built by William and Barbra of the Sanctuary house and was their original location. The labyrinth was an interesting experience for me and I would like to share some of the things that occurred to me as I made my Journey.

First, I think a little background information is in order. The story of Theseus in the Labyrinth is not just a myth. This is really a metaphor for the decent of the soul into the lower three worlds connected by the golden thread of consciousness. The Labyrinth is a representation of the path of decent during involution and the eventual path of return upon which we all, as human beings, find ourselves.

Theseus (you) who was of both divine and human decent, used a golden thread provided by the beautiful Ariadne (the soul) out of her love for him to find the way back out of the Labyrinth (the lower three worlds) after slaying the Minotaur, (the lower self or “animal nature”), a half man half bull that had been placed at the center of the labyrinth.

Realizing all of the above I began my symbolic journey. Now this will not lead to any huge mystical insights and I hope that I am not building you up to a disappointment. Liz had instructed me to take my time and to stop any time the inclination hit me and just allow the experience to happen and whatever insights I may have to flow through me. This is what I found.

The path I was on was a twisting and turning convoluted walkway that from a distance looked like a flower. It is not a maze, because unless you screw up there is only one path which leads to the center and then back out. If you attempted to follow the entire path with your eyes it would be difficult even from above, although you can always easily see the goal, the center, where in this case, they had placed an enormous crystal. If you tried to follow the entire path from standing on it at any point, it is dizzying and basically impossible. Even if you could there is no real point. Just keep on keeping on and you will eventually arrive at the goal without having to predict every step along the way.

The LabrynthThe Labrynth
from above it looks like a flower
from above it looks like a flower

I remember a passage from one of the books about Don Juan, written by Carlos Castaneda. I can’t quote it or find it, I’ve tried, but the gist of it is this.

It is not necessary to determine every step upon an infinitely long journey. Once a general direction has been established it is only necessary to determine what will be the next few steps on the path. Any attempt to plot the entire step by step process is at best futile and at worst a delusion.

Do you see the parallels to the path, the infinitely long journey of the soul? From inside the labyrinth it is the best you can do to follow the next few steps and maybe the next two turns. We need to address what is directly in front of us and the ramifications of the immediate actions and not worry so much about what will be happening a year from now or ten years, or how long we may be traveling, once that general direction has been established. Pondering where it all leads and the purpose of the plan is not without merit, unless it stops you from taking care of the task at hand. This is the plight of the impractical visionary. Lofty goals and imaginings without action leave the visionary in the place he started.

My father, Anthony Fisichella used to tell a story about a Zen student who came to his Master one morning and asked; “Master, what can I do today to help myself find enlightenment?” The Master replied, “Have you eaten breakfast?” The student eagerly answered “yes..” The Master admonished him, “then go do the dishes!”

Service starts at home with the ones closest to you and there is a reason for that. Jesus told his followers that if they came to the temple bearing gifts and realized that they had offended their brother to leave their gifts, make amends with the brother and then return. All the lofty aspirations of the disciple are useless to the world if he is not first taking care of those closest to him. All future plans of great accomplishment are built on the foundations of the here and now. Take care of those around you and the next few steps on the path. Those few steps will lead to the next few and no plans for the final steps will need to be re-considered.

Love Light and Power

Doug

Its Alive!

Well after almost six months of planning shopping for a designer writing content and waiting, the new website is up and running. We threw the switch Yesterday. Its not perfect and there are a link or two that will lead to a dead end but its up and I am thrilled.

We used David Frith of Wycombe Web Works and judge for yourself, but I think he did an excellent job. You can view our videos, download or listen to audio clips. There are Articles from the newsletter and an archive of everything we’ve written. You can read excerpts of the “One Solitary Life” books and we will be including audio clips from the Well of Wisdom series as soon as we can.

We even have a place where you can ask a question, and we’ll answer every one of them according to the Ancient Wisdom teachings.

We have sections for metaphysics and meditation along with healthy living and success principals. If there is something you would like to see, tell us and we’ll do our best.

I hope you enjoy it and come back often or just sign up for the newsletter.

The link is http://www.Higher-Ground.com