Listen to Episode 2 of Consciousness Talk:
Tania: Welcome back to Consciousness Talk. Today is session number 2. And we’re going to be talking about all kinds of things today. And I will pass it over to Rich to talk a little bit about what we’re going to be going through.
Rich: I’ll quarter back it, and then we can go back and forth. What I want to talk about, is first, to go back to the beginning. Everybody wants to know where the beginning is at. And Elaine’s got something good on that, but I’ll give you some statistics here. The world population at 1000 BC was about 110 million. And the origin of the earth always is a question mark for a lot of us. And there’s a great thing in Genesis in the Bible. And I’m going to have Tania read that.
Tania: So this is from Genesis: “Now a population explosion took place upon the earth. It was at this time that beings from the spirit world looked upon the beautiful earth woman, and took any they desired to be their wives…
Then Jehovah said: My spirit must not forever be disgraced in man, wholly evil as he is. I will give him 120 years to mend their ways. In those days, and even afterwards, when the evil beings from the spirit world were sexually involved with human women, their children became giants, of whom so many legends are told.”
Rich: Wow, isn’t that interesting? You don’t hear that too often, do we? And that’s out of a book that I got at a church. And it’s kind of a new thought book. What they did was, instead of all the “where fors” and “thou shalts” they just put the Bible in simple English. And so that obviously caught my attention…the concept of the earthly beings being something different from the celestial beings, and that they came on earth and impregnated our women.
Elaine: That’s fascinating.
Rich: Well it is, and to me, more and more, it makes a lot of sense. Today, when you look at the Bhagavad Gita, it implies that Krishna, out a pebble smaller than you can see, created this world, and it’s massive… And so you go to astrophysics and they’re now looking at universes up in the sky and they’re able to see universes that are going to expand and get bigger, and then solar systems that are shrinking and collapsing, which really ties in with the Bhagavad Gita. So that starts to make some sense, and possibilities, for all of us to look at.
Tania: I find it interesting how it says that “the evil beings from the spirit world came down and impregnated women.” That kind of saddens me a little bit, that they were evil beings.
Rich: Well I don’t know. I’ve got a feeling that could be just interpretation from whoever was re-writing the Bible. All the Bible stuff has got a human element to it.
Elaine: That kind of begs the question of the whole topic of extra-terrestrial visitation. Because there’s a fair amount of evidence, I guess you could call it, but it depends on how you look at it, that ancient aliens were here thousands of years ago.
Rich: Yeah, you see that in South America with the markings and the landing strips that had been there.
Farzad: Another thing is, most prophets and great masters didn’t write their own book, other people wrote their books. As Mr. Meyer was talking about, it can be other people’s interpretation.
Elaine: Where it said spiritual beings impregnated the humans, and created giants…it’s almost like it’s saying it’s another species.
Rich: One thing I can think of is the extraterrestrials maybe got hot over a monkey or something, they’re kind of small, and so…
Farzad: It could have been because at that time the earth was so close to the sun, and possibly even the monkey they say existed at that time, they couldn’t exist in that heat, in that kind of environment on these days if you go so many millions years back.
Rich: Yeah it could be millions, I don’t know.
Elaine: So many unknowns. So many questions about the origins of everything… the origins of man… the origins of religion.
Rich: So, maybe you can review the highlights of your 7,000 year thing.
Elaine: Oh yeah. This is just a timeline of religions. And it says that Hinduism dates back to 7000 BC.
Rich: Really, that far?
Elaine: So it’s kind of saying that’s the oldest, unless you go into African, and other ones that go back…
Rich: Well there’s tribal things going back tens of millions of years probably.
Elaine: Yeah that’s right. Then with Judaism it says 2000 BC. Does that sound right?
Rich: Well it says 3500 here, but who knows.
Farzad: Organized religions basically.
Elaine: And then Zoroastrianism, did I say that right?
Elaine: That’s 1500 BC. And then 700 to 500 BC was Buddhism, Jainism, Confucianism, and Taoism. Then you’ve got Christianity which is 1, or 0, and then Islam 600 AD. So that’s kind of fascinating.
Rich: Yeah it is. And so when we look at those things, and continue forward on it, Buddha is the first to seem to step out of the Hindu traditions, partly, and step out of the Judaic approach to things. The Judaic was: there is a God, etc, and he’s up there and gonna beat on ya. So the neat thing about Buddha is that there is no God in the Buddhist tradition. So that makes it interesting to say the least. And what he did, and what he said was very simple, and I think I’ll parallel what Farzad had said…is there are Four Noble Truths, and then there’s the Eightfold Path. I’ll walk you through the Californiacation of the Four Noble Truths…
Rich: Are you ready? Number one: Life’s a bitch. Other interpretations can be it’s full of pain and suffering, etc. And the second noble truth is: Where there’s pain there is ego; and where there’s ego there’s pain. And the third noble truth is real simple again: There is a solution. The fourth noble truth: The solution is my Eight steps over here. So when you look at the whole thing, it boils down to the first noble truth that life’s a bitch, and it’s caused by pain and suffering, and we create it is what we do, is what that implies. So if we don’t buy into it, then we don’t buy into it.
But…I’ll just keep going for a little bit. So Buddha was a break off from the Hindu tradition in that sense. So I think it’s one of the first things where…well I guess now that we’re talking… is the Hindu tradition… well it has a god, but it’s not a punishing god. The Hindu tradition…I’ll get into that in a second. So that’s kind of an interesting thing. Any comments..to keep going here.
Elaine: Maybe I’m wrong on this, but Hinduism has many Gods right?
Rich: Well Krishna is the big god.
Elaine: Right, okay, so there’s a hierarchy of gods… so Krishna’s at the top?
Tania: And they just represent different things…all the different gods.
Farzad: There’s different sectors and Krishna is the biggest one as far as the numbers of Hinduism, that believe in Krishna. There are many different sectors that believe in different things, but Krishna is still the main god.
Rich: So to me, this was a world changing thing, Buddha to come in and say, doesn’t say there is not god, but he just says… well, the opening line of the Dhammapada, which is Buddha’s first teaching…
So a little bit of the story on Buddha: Buddha was from a very wealthy family, and apparently in those days you had the fiefdoms, and then apparently after the fiefdoms out there on the streets were normal people, or probably slaves, or poor people. And what happened was when he would leave the castle, all the slaves we’ll call them, or all the people providing services for the family, would clear the streets so that Buddha would not see the real world the way it was. And so one day Buddha’s out and they take him out for a ride, and he sees a person that’s old and decrepit and dying, and Buddha’s says, “What the hell is this?” (paraphrasing). And so this opened up a whole new thing for Buddha, saying, “Oh my gosh, this is horrible, what’s happening?” (paraphrasing). So he didn’t break away from things at that time. He started studying, and he ended up going into the forest to learn about life from a different perspective. He surrendered his wealth, and went to be a hippie – if you would – and that was really good.
Farzad: Yeah, actually that reminds me of St. Francis’ life as well. That’s what he did, leaving the wealth, and going with people that were suffering.
Rich: Yeah. The real suffering is massive. And so in the Dhammapada, it’s really fascinating, the opening line is this: don’t quote me, but it’s approximately this:
Rich: Where we’re at today is the sum total of our past thoughts. And the second line is: Where you’ll be tomorrow is the sum total of your thoughts. So that takes it totally out of some mystical being in charge of our world. It puts life in our hands to: “Hey it’s whatever you think, and whatever you want, so if you want carrots you’re gonna get carrots, and if you want mustard you’re going to get mustard.”
Elaine: It empowers the individual.
Elaine: Rather than an entity outside of ourselves.
Farzad: Rumi has a really good code word, and that is: God is familiar with our thoughts.
Rich: Oh yeah.
Tania: God is familiar with our thoughts….
Rich: Yeah. Well that’s great to get Rumi’s thoughts in here. Yeah, so it’s some fun stuff for us to learn. So out of that, Buddhism was… I show it to be 600 b.c…in that range, a little ahead of what Farzad had said, but it doesn’t matter. But the whole quantum change is the concept of: you’re responsible for everything in your life.
Elaine: Your consciousness…
Rich: Your consciousness rather, yeah.
Elaine: I think your consciousness is the driving force, like, it’s within you. But then there’s the thing where you tap into the universe…the vast consciousness that you tap into, you bring into your consciousness. So it goes both ways I guess…?
Tania: I’m curious to know like with Buddhism, because what you’re saying is like it’s preaching that we’re in control of our thoughts and that’s what creates our reality… I’m curious to know if there’s any element of just like surrender to any higher power…or it’s kind of like two wings of a bird? I’m curious.
Farzad: Beautiful subject.
Rich: Well, we can go into his Eightfold Path. I may have them backward, but I can tell you what I was told. And it’s reflection. So you review your day today, tomorrow, each day… review it. Ask yourself, what harm had I done today? Did I hit somebody in the face?
Elaine: Did I say an unkind thing?
Rich: Well that comes second. Review all your acts for the day. Now the second thing is review all your words for the day. Did I say an unkind thing? Did I tell Johnny that he was ugly? Those kinds of things. And then the other one is…one more step to go—probably the starting step, I can’t remember: Review every thought that you’ve had.
Tania: So we’re reviewing actions, thoughts, and words…
Tania: Is that the first half, or is that three halves?
Rich: That’s three steps. So that get’s really serious, when you start.. Why did I think Johnny was ugly?.. Boy, now the onus is on me. Is there something wrong with me if I think…?
Farzad: That brings a lot of guilt!
Rich: Well, not if the next five are to get rid of the guilt, and cure what’s inside you.
Farzad: That is actually the form of I think some Buddhist meditations, to become the master of our thoughts, to watch our thoughts, to become separated from our thoughts. Who are we, who am I? And to make the purity in me, and purity looking at the thoughts.
Farzad: Yes mindfulness.
Elaine: There’s even this idea that we’re not our thoughts.
Rich: Yeah that’s good. I like that.
Tania: …we’re not our thoughts… our feelings…we’re not any of those things.
Elaine: It’s freeing when you think that way, when you realize that whatever’s going on in your brain doesn’t necessarily reflect reality, or who you are.
Farzad: Can we be truthful about it too? what we thought the whole day?
Rich: Truthful to yourself, but the minute you say it, you’re in trouble! Well…the minute you say it you’re not in trouble with God, you’re in trouble with your higher self (your next step up ?)
Elaine: You’re in trouble even for thinking it…
Farzad: Thanks for saying it! Yeah… you’re so smart
Rich: So back to our Silk Road, this is going on 500 years before the Silk Road was in motion, but for sure there was communications from India probably to the West and to the East. Buddhism expanded rapidly throughout India, and I think it got close to into Europe, and then it got out to the East, and then into the islands to the south.
Elaine: Spreading.. and enlightening people…
Rich: Yeah. So it’s fun type stuff.
Tania: I can only imagine if we could implement that every day, that review of thoughts, actions and words… that would be really powerful to do that every day over time…it would make a difference.
Elaine: And the Eightfold Path is to…what? Did he define it… to enlightenment?
Rich: Enlightenment, yeah.
Elaine: So enlightenment is the goal.
Farzad: I’m already enlightened with you guys here…keep it goin’..
Rich: Let’s see… what was the biblical thing that I wanted to say? The New Testament… Let’s see… In the New Testament is referring to the Old Testament…
I was taught that Elijah… Do you remember the name from biblical teaching?
Rich: Elijah was a prophet within the Judaic world, and he’s the only guy that didn’t die and go to heaven. Works for me, and when you read some of the Hindu stuff, it works for me too. So he didn’t go to heaven. The belief of a lot of people was that there was an Elijah, and then his student was Elisha. A little bit confusing. So then when you go to the new testament they talk about that…and Elisha was Jesus, and Elijah was the reincarnation of… Which one did I say? John the Baptist was the incarnation of Elijah, and Jesus was the incarnation of Elisha. And so, for them to make any sense of it… How about reading that part down there…
Tania: “Then Jesus said to his disciples, if anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For anyone who keeps his life for himself shall lose it, and anyone who loses his life for me, shall find it again.
His disciples asked: Why do the Jewish leaders insist Elijah must return before the Messiah comes? Jesus replied: They are right. Elijah must come and set everything in order. And in fact, he has already come but he wasn’t recognized, and was badly mistreated by many. And I, the Messiah, shall also suffer at their hands. Then the disciples realized he was speaking of John the Baptist.
Rich: So John the Baptists probably had been assassinated by the that time…had his head cut off.
Elaine: What do you think is the significance of that story.
Rich: Well the significance for metaphysical people is that reincarnation exists, and it’s been in the Bible, but it’s always disguised. One of the concepts on why you can’t get it out of the Bible is that in Rome by the time you got Pope’s and stuff like that going…life was a bitch…I mean really hard. All of life. And pretty much everybody was slaves, I think. You had the high rollers, almost like today. Everybody else was down there, and then the high rollers.
What they had to do is invent heaven. And keep pounding your nails and keep doing your low labor things…don’t worry about it… but give to the church… make sure your indulgences are there and the more that you give to the Lord, the more you’re gonna reap in heaven. And so happiness was in heaven, but on earth was a bitch. And that starts to make a lot of sense is that’s what happened.
Elaine: That’s an interesting concept, that that created heaven…b e a good citizen and give money to the church, and then you’ll go to heaven. It’s sort of a simple concept, and people just buy right into it.
Rich: That’s where you’ll reap your rewards…don’t try to reap them down on earth where we’re at.
Elaine: Yeah, it’s going to come later.
Rich: And if you did go against that, then there was all kinds of punishment. So they were punished into believing that.
Elaine: Yeah, lots of punishment.
Farzad: Give me the money now, when you die…then we give you the reward, after you’re gone.
Rich: Well, and then on top of that is, if you had a relative, and the relative had died, and you needed to put some money in the basket for him, or her, you’d say, “Ok, well I’ll get him out of purgatory.” That’s one thing…purgatory was good, in a sense that we in the Lutheran religion didn’t have purgatory, we went straight to hell. Catholics you could get to purgatory for awhile.. and hopefully somebody bails you out. Ah… sorry to be so sacrilegious.
Elaine: Well this is all new to me. I love hearing it. I didn’t hear any of these stories growing up. These were part of your life growing up right? Purgatory…and..
Rich: Yeah. And we’ve got more coming on in the future here. Alright, wind me down. That’s the end of our talk for today. Any parting thoughts Farzad?
Farzad: Of course, we appreciate you bringing this subject, and making this happen.
Elaine: Yes, thanks Rich.
Rich: We’re having fun?
Tania: Yes learning lots. And it’s fun..
Rich: Ok there will be a quiz tomorrow…
Rich: Take care.