Creating the New Earth Together

Posts tagged ‘The Paradise Myth’

Getting Back to Eden, part 5: The Process of Transformation 2

 

Is it not written in your law, ‘I have said, “You are gods”?’  —Yeshua 

Paradigm shifts have occurred in our consciousness rather frequently over the course of the last several decades, and innovations have emerged in the ways we do things.  In the way we relate to God, for example, we’ve gone from church affiliation and attendance to spiritual transformation by way of “paths” to enlightenment and Self realization; from being mere humans to angels incarnate in bodies that are temples of a living God; from awareness as humans seeking an experience of God to that of God seeking a fuller experience of our humanity, as expressed in the saying “I am God being Human.”

In the field of healthcare, we’ve gone from the medical model of treating the symptoms of disease to the holistic model of treating the whole person and addressing the cause; from physical medicine to “energy medicine,” embracing esoteric energy healing modalities; from running costly and invasive diagnostic tests to honoring the body’s innate intelligence and wisdom by reading its energy fields and meridian circuits via muscle-testing for first hand information from the body itself about its condition and need for intervention and/or nutritional support; and from reactive passive healthcare to proactive preventive wellness care. We’ve even found a way via bio-energetic inquiry to discern and treat the cause of dis-ease at the emotional and subconscious levels with “Neuro-Linguistic Programing,” an approach too innovative and subtle for the reductionist “fix the problem from outside-in” mindset. Ultimately, we’ve dared to transplant organs from one body to another, even clone living forms via genetic engineering and test-tube creation.

In the tech world we’ve gone from naturally endowed intelligence to artificial intelligence; from building structures with bricks and mortar to constructing matter at the atomic level with nanotechnology; from assembly-line manual labor to robotics; from land lines to cell phones, from writing letters to sending emails, and now texts; and from attending seminars and conferences to teleconferencing in virtual “face time” space. We’ve gone from doing research in a library to “Googling” just about anything we want to know.

In science and physics we’ve seen leaps upward and out into the macrocosm of space and downward into the microcosm of quantum physics. We’ve “progressed” from mechanical and chemical engineering to genetic engineering of plants, foods, and, God help us, our own species.

In a word, we’ve evolved in our consciousness — and in our identity — as well as in our expression and functions, from being “creatures of circumstance” to creators; from being “mere humans” to becoming gods in our own right.

Transformation, the changing of the outer form of things, has been the main event of the last sixty years. And now with this coronavirus pandemic, social distancing has isolated us from one another—coupled by job and economic disruptions, world-wide social transformation is underway. The last 40 years of the 20th Century were particularly marked by transformation, preparing us for radical changes in the new millennium. The most important and pivotal transformation underway is a spiritual one, more like a transmutation of our identity from human to divine.

SIGNIFICANCE AND HISTORY OF THE NUMBER 40  

It seems the number 40 carries the energy of change in numerology.  A Facebook friend posted this recently: “The Latin root of the word ‘quarantine’ is ‘forty.’ The official lock-down started March 23 and will likely end May 1st. That is EXACTLY 40 days.” She cited biblical events, such as the 40 days Moses stayed on Mount Sinai to receive the Commandments and the 40 days of his wandering in the wilderness with the children of Israel; and Jesus fasting in the desert for 40 days.  The optimum number of weeks for human gestation is 40, and the rest period for a woman after giving birth is 40 days.  Essentially it is the time needed for preparing a person, or people, to make a fundamental change, to let go of things we no longer need to live fully and move forward into a new beginning in a New Earth. 

TRANSFORMATION

Richard Heinberg sheds light on the process of transformation in MEMORIES AND VISIONS OF PARADISE, characterizing the personal transformation of Jesus and the Buddha as “opening a door between worlds.”

The process of transformation need not be arduous. Indeed, in some respects it is more play than work — though not the competitive, win/lose play of civilized adults, but more the spontaneous, mutually trusting, experimental, and ecstatic play of young children and wild animals. As psychologist O. Fred Donaldson puts it, “Play is nature’s way of triumphing over culture.”  If Paradise is our natural state of being, then the deepest and most compelling force at the core of the collective unconscious is one that is always urging us toward that state of equilibrium. As we deliberately work toward a future characterized by respect and care for Nature and toward the nurturing of love, forgiveness, compassion, and celebration in ourselves and in one another, our conscious efforts resonate with the pattern at the core of our being. Heaven and Nature rush to return to a condition of balance and accord.

It is also true that as we move in the transformational process, we are working against social conditioning that continually tends to divide us both from one another and from the very ground of our own being. Hence, the need for the spiritual quest, which in all its guises is essentially a process of cutting through the crust of ego that prevents us from experiencing and revealing our own innate paradisal character.

This quest is neither new nor unprecedented. It is neither more nor less than the archetypal hero’s journey, identified by Joseph Campbell as being central to every mythic tradition. Every culture remembers exemplary men and women who have accomplished inter­nal transformations, and who have left instructions by which others can do the same. While the details of the instructions may differ, all spiritual exemplars agree on the broad outline of the process. It consists, first, of a withdrawal from the world-as-it-is, and a deliberate act of purification. This is followed by a period of integration within the system of universal spiritual values. The process culminates in a final realization of unity with the ultimate Principle of all that is. While the details of the process are individual, the essential outline of the journey is always the same, as is the goal: Paradise — the realization of oneness with Heaven and Nature.

The heroic quest is fundamentally a symbolic journey, representing the progressive unfoldment of the hero’s transcendent character and destiny. Jesus and the Buddha are figures who accomplished the profound inner transformation by which a door was opened between worlds, and human society was led to a partially or temporarily restored condition. Ultimately, the records of their lives are metaphors for what must occur in the experience of anyone who takes up the quest.

In every hero myth, the first stage in the journey consists simply of hearing and responding to a call. The hero or heroine must realize that the world is in need of healing, and that his or her own actions will make a difference to others. For the Buddha, the call came when he was thirty years of age and first saw sickness, old age, and death. He was so profoundly moved by the suffering he saw that he stole away from his sleeping wife and child to seek the key to liberation from the universal human condition. For Jesus, the first awareness of the call came when he was only twelve years old. He left his parents and spent three days in the temple among the doctors, discussing theology. When his worried parents finally found him, he said simply, “Wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?”

As we lift our attention above our conditioned wants and fears long enough to become aware of the purposes of a greater Whole, we suddenly see the possibility that our lives could have significance beyond comfort and self-satisfaction. The call may be faintly sensed, or it may blare. In either case, a conscious decision must be made to either listen or shut it out. To ignore the call is to die to the purposes of life. But to listen and to accept the challenge of the quest requires a willingness to leave behind the ruts established for us by heredity and environment, and to explore unfamiliar territory. We cannot enter Paradise without leaving behind our present cultural or psychic envi­ronment.

The second stage of the quest involves coming to terms with a dragon, demon, or enemy. Seeing suffering, we seek its cause, and causes of human suffering are legion. At the beginning of this stage we may see a dragon that is external to ourselves — an immediate source of injustice and cruelty. We may decide that the dragon is embodied in a philosophy we detest, or in a person whose actions seem to cause others pain. Many people become fixed in this phase of the quest and never proceed further. Their lives are spent battling the demons of the world, which, even when apparently slain, seem to grow new heads and return to torment them again.

As long as we continue battling external demons, we are incapable of fully bringing peace to our world. Eventually, if we remain true to the call — if we continue to listen — we will come to understand that the real dragon is within us: all the problems of our world have been produced by tendencies present in ourselves. Until and unless our internal dragons can be dealt with, even the most valorous external battle cannot fully bear fruit. Some of the great heroes in religious literature seem to have realized this from the beginning. Both Jesus and the Buddha, for example, knew from the outset that the victory they sought was a triumph over their own lower natures. Gandhi, on the other hand, began his career with the belief that the dragon consisted entirely of governmentally enforced racism; only gradually did he come to see his own attitudes and behavior as the battleground for the forces of good and evil.

Once the dragon is recognized as being an internal force, a different kind of battle begins. This stage of the process, in which the hero is wrestling with his own inner demons, doesn’t seem especially paradisal. It involves the exposure of one’s weaknesses and the surrender of personal attachments. Paradoxically, it seems, one can only get to Paradise by being willing to go through hell. But this conflict, too, must come to an end. The resolution of the battle with the inner demon is represented in the story of Jesus’ temptations in the wilderness. Before Jesus began his public ministry, and after he had fasted in the wilderness for forty days, the Devil appeared to him. The Devil first offered Jesus bread, symbolizing personal fulfillment at the physical level; then he challenged Jesus’ authority; and finally he offered the kingdoms of the world, “if thou will fall down and worship me.” But Jesus, refusing physical desire, the need to prove himself, and personal ambition as motives for his behavior, replied, “Get thee hence, Satan!” For him, the demon was gone.

A similar story of the Buddha says that while he was sitting under the Bodhi tree, immediately before attaining enlightenment, he was tempted by the god-demon Mara. Amid both violence and offers of pleasure and power, he simply sat and remained calm, “like a lion seated in the midst of oxen.” Mara and his armies, frustrated, left in defeat.

The dragon or demon can be fully tamed only through consistent inner work over a period of years. Yet, there is an instantaneous quality to the essential transformation that eventually comes: at any time a sudden change of state may occur and Paradise will be present, if only for a moment. The hero tames the dragon not by fighting it, but by refusing to fight it — by facing it, courageously holding steady, and expressing the character of innocence and love. Suddenly, the hero realizes that Paradise has been there all along, unnoticed.

Even after the hero has momentarily achieved paradisal awareness, he must still learn to sustain and communicate that state. From this point on, he is certain that he has known the true and natural condition of human consciousness — the pearl of great price, for which the wise person will sell everything (Matthew 13:46).

After having developed the ability to consistently maintain paradisal consciousness, the hero returns to the mundane world with a healing balm. Having found Heaven, he must share it — which means sharing himself, his state of being. For the individual, the return is the culmination of the journey, but the quest is not complete until the world has been restored.

Richard is interviewed briefly in Michael Moore’s recently released film PLANET OF THE HUMANS, an hour-and-forty-minute documentary update on the present state of our world and our ill-placed hope in biomass, wind turbans and solar panels — well worth your time watching.

Hello Octogenerians! 

On a more personal note, I will join the elder generation of octogenerians and complete my 80th trip around the sun on May 20, 2020. There’s got to be a few 40’s in those numbers, as I have certainly gone through many changes in those eighty years. I have been greatly blessed by many life-long friends and clients over the years.  I thank you for following my blogs and sharing them with your friends.  Feel free to share your thoughts by email. Until my next post,

Be love. Be loved

Anthony   

tpal70@gmail.com

 

Getting Back To Paradise, part 1: Purification First

“It may be that some little root of the sacred tree still lives. Nourish it then, that it may leaf and bloom and fill with singing birds.”  Black Elk

In the quiet stillness of these times, I will continue sharing my current stream of thought around the theme of “Paradise Remembered.” In this post I revisit Richard Heinberg’s MEMORIES and VISIONS of PARADISE to start bringing this series to a positive finale, starting with this promising passage: 

A new Paradise awaits, but humanity must first undergo a cathar­tic cleansing. Few prophets have looked beyond the day of Purification to describe the events of the restored Golden Age, for the world to come will be inconceivable in terms of the present one. With the return of Paradise, history — as a chronicle of wars and intrigue, of plots and villains — will be finished. Humanity and Nature, Heaven and Earth will once more be joined in peace and harmony as a new Creation-Time begins. 

PURIFICATION OF THE HEART

In the biblical story of the Fall, an angel with a flaming sword was placed at the entrance to Eden guarding the way to the Tree of Life, lest fallen Man partake of its fruit and live forever in his fallen state.  The angel represents the ONE I AM; the sword represents TRUTH; the fire represents the purifying SPIRIT OF LOVE. The story, of course, is a metaphor indicating that in order to return to Eden, we must pass through the fire of purification and prove that we can be true to the Truth of Love, true to our true Self.

The first order of business is the cleansing of the heart, especially of immune-crippling fear and shame. Buried deeply in the heart of humanity are fearful memories of a cataclysmic past in which the human race and all living things were nearly and literally wiped off the face of the earth, such as what occurred in the days of Noah with the Deluge.  We carry shame in our hearts for having brought this calamity, and all those that followed, upon our own heads by forgetting to live by the Law of One, and fear that calamity will happen again. It was said, however, that the Creator would not destroy the world again by water, and that this generation is “reserved unto fire.” What are some of the implications of this prophecy, and by what possible means would such a fiery cleansing take place?

THE CREATING PROCESS

In addressing these questions, I turn to a consideration of the Creative Process in which matter is drawn together for a season and then undone and recycled for future creative purposes.  Integration is an equal partner to dis-integration in this process—and their cycles run concurrently, only integration tends to be a bit more subtle, and dis-integration tends to gain a lot more attention.

As examples: devastating forest fires make news headlines, while new growth in their wake receives little if any media coverage.  Plagues, like the current pandemic, devastate our sense of security, along with the human population — although to little extent compared to the 1.4% current population growth rate — and the daily death toll makes leading story for the morning news. On the other end of the population spectrum, we’re less likely to see announcements of new births in our daily newspaper as we see obituaries. 

Ironically, while we all celebrate new births with congratulatory sentiment, we may harbor reservations about the wisdom of bringing a child into this turbulent and overpopulated world.  We are, after all, leaving our children a mess to clean up.  My concern for our grandchildren is that they will suffer painful hardship in the collapse of this un-civilized world—and I don’t think there’s any doubt remaining that this will come to pass, if not in our lifetime, in theirs.

On our walk a few days ago we met up with a young friend who, with his wife, have agreed not to have children and bring more human beings into this world. Such conscious thinking and wisdom are exemplary.

As a species, we do need to curb population growth, and the starting place is with individuals.  Family-planning is essential, with conception-and-birth control taking precedence over abortion.  For those who do not wish to bring more children into the world, adoption is a beautiful way to fulfill a couple’s desire to have children and a family. If we the people do not take this matter into our hands, the powers that be, that manipulate the masses for profit, will do it in ways that are ungodly and do irreversible damage to the genetics of our species. 

Dan Brown’s INFERNO may be fiction, but the reduction of the human population by means of a viral epidemic, or vaccinations, has been conceived in human consciousness, the matrix in which the patterns of human civilization are set, and out of which our world is born. That said, let us not energize that conception by focusing our mental judgments on it, nor on those “evil-doers out there,” lest the conceived possibility take on a life of its own and become our-worst-fears-realized.

The creating processes of integration and disintegration are unfolding continually.  The question I pose is this: “Is there a ‘critical mass’ in place on earth sufficient to move the Creating Process in a more dominantly integrative direction?”  I sense that we’re getting there, if we’re not there already.  

FOUR WORLD AGES COME AND GO

Historically, ages end with cataclysmic events. According to the Ancients, there have been four Ages in our history.  Richard Heinberg cites them:

World Ages

If the magical landscape fixes Paradise in space, its position in time is defined by its placement at the beginning of a series of world ages. We have already noted the Greek and Hindu conceptions of the ages or yugas of the world, respectively; there are also close parallels among other cultures. The Iranians, for example, knew four cosmic ages that, in a lost Mazdaean book, the Sudkar~nask, are referred to as the ages of gold, silver, steel, and “mixed with iron.” In the Iranian conception, as in the Greek and Hindu, each age is a step in the world’s deterioration, a process that is leading to a final apocalyptic cleansing.”

The Mayans counted their world ages as consecutive Suns­ — Water Sun, Earthquake Sun, Hurricane Sun, and Fire Sun — according to the nature of the catastrophe that closed the epoch. The Hopi also spoke of four worlds — Tokpela, Tokpa, Kuskurza, and Tuwaquchi — the first of which is described in paradisal terms.  Following their creation in the Tokpela world, the first people went their directions, were happy, and began to multiply. With the pristine wisdom granted them, they under­stood that the earth was a living entity like themselves. She was their mother; they were made from her flesh …. In their wisdom they also knew their father in two aspects. He was the Sun, the solar god of their universe …. Yet his was but the face through which looked Taiowa, their creator …. These universal entities were their real parents, their human parents being but the instruments through which their power was made manifest . . . . . 

THE END OF A WORLD AGE

We are the generation to see the end of the “mixed-with-iron” age and the beginning of the “Information Age”– the age of “Artificial Intelligence” or “AI.” That has such a foreboding sound to it.  Are we actually relegating our intelligence to the computer?  Sounds like a final step downward in the devolution of our species — from spiritual beings who had access to all knowledge — past, present and future — down to the level of these animal bodies with brains that have limited vision, and down further yet to the mineral kingdom where we hand over our “intelligence” to a computer silicon chip in which our vision and view of reality is determined by “data” rather than spiritual discernment.   

Returning to the question I posed earlier, by what possible means will this generation be cleansed by fire? Heinberg speaks to this question in the final chapters of his book. I will conclude with these excerpts in two or three posts.

To Get Back to the Garden

EDENIC CONSCIOUSNESS MAY BE RECOVERABLE by individuals in rare moments of spiritual insight. Perhaps nearly everyone glimpses Paradise at some instant during his or her lifetime. But is it also possible for all of us together to live in the Garden once again — to return and stay? This final chapter will offer two reasons for thinking that it is possible. We will see, moreover, how signs of strain and disintegration in the founda­tions of our present civilization, together with some intriguing developments at the growing tips of society, suggest that a new Golden Age may already be struggling to be born.

The Attainability of Paradise

The evidence of anthropology and archaeology may not prove (though it certainly does not deny) the former existence of a Golden Age — that is, of a unitary culture in which people were universally and continually telepathic, lived close to Nature, and possessed miraculous powers. But, as we saw in chapter 8, anthropological and archaeologi­cal discoveries have shown, almost beyond a doubt, that two of the most destructive aspects of civilization (the use and justification of violence as a means of social change, and the desire for dominance over other human beings and over Nature) were acquired only re­cently. The findings of archaeologists show that in the past human beings did live — and therefore in principle are capable of living — in peace and harmony both among themselves and with Nature.

Moreover, the evidence of psychology suggests not only that a subjective condition of oneness, peace, and innocence is attainable, but also that it is the natural and healthy mode of human consciousness. If the human body functions best in the absence of the ego-states of blame, fear, and resentment (as medical experiments show that it does), then the fact that we are living in an ego-based world, in which Paradise is the exceptional experience, must therefore be an unusual and temporary state of affairs.

If we were able to live in Paradise once, we ought to be able to do so again. And if the most natural and healthy way of life available to human beings is defined by the expression of the essential paradisal qualities of character and the subsequent experience of universal harmony, then what is natural should in principle also be attainable. In short, we may be designed to live in Paradise.

Why, then, do we routinely assume that Paradise is beyond our reach? Perhaps it is partly because we have an unrealistic concept of what that state is or should be. We tend to think of Paradise as a place or time in which all human desires are satisfied; since people’s desires tend to conflict, we therefore assume that Paradise could never actu­ally exist. But the Paradise of myth and vision is not a state in which conflicting personal desires are somehow all fulfilled. Rather, it is one in which all human desires and motives are completely subsumed within a larger creative purpose. If individual desires are satisfied in Paradise, this is only because it is the overwhelming desire of all individuals that the consummate accord of Nature and Cosmos be nourished and maintained.

The inhabitants of Paradise — whether in myths of the First Age or in near-death visions — are universally characterized by their expres­sion of specific values and qualities of character. And, as Aldous Huxley (among others) has shown, a comparative study of the relig­ions of the world reveals that these values and qualities — honesty, compassion, and love — are universal and innate. Whether it was a historical reality or not, Paradise exists in the eternal present as an image expressing our deepest sense of what is right and true about ourselves.

Looked at in this way, Paradise may be seen as serving a specific function, as a design for living embedded in the circuitry of human consciousness. All biological organisms, including human beings, contain elements of design. We know, for example, that the pattern of the DNA molecules in our cells governs the basic design of our physical bodies. Perhaps we also contain within us a neurological or psychic program for the optimal design of social and spiritual relations between ourselves, the Cosmos, and Nature — a design of telepathic oneness and interspecies communion that represents the goal toward which our individual and collective experience would naturally tend to unfold.

Provided there are no significant interferences, the design inher­ent in the DNA molecules in our cells is expressed automatically and accurately in the formation of our physical bodies. Perhaps the same is potentially true of the neurological design of Paradise: provided its expression is not blocked, the pattern of oneness with the universal currents of life, as well as of miraculous abilities, should be automati­cally and accurately reflected in our ordinary experience.

At present, however, it is not. As we have seen, nearly all of the world’s spiritual traditions agree that the innate paradisal design is being thwarted in its expression by certain now-universal patterns of attitude, thought, and behavior.

Could it be that simple?  Could Paradise be, as Scott Peck imaged, A World Waiting To Be Born ?  Awaiting our expression of it?  Of its Spirit?  Is the “fire” unto which this generation is reserved the fire of Spirit in expression through us?  The spirit of love, of truth and of life?  Energetically, cosmic conditions are just right for the birth of a new world and a new human race, with our conscious participation as “spiritual midwives,” as we travel with the planet and solar system, at breakneck speed, into uncharted waters in space.  Our once clouded vision is clarifying and expanding to encompass the image of a Golden Age coming down from God out of a New Heaven manifesting a New Earth.  Let us welcome it with joy and celebration.

Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away. For lo the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land. . . .  Make haste, my beloved, and be thou like to a roe or to a young hart upon the mountains of spices. (Song of Solomon

The Teacher taught that fear is cast out of the heart by “perfect love”— unconditional love consistently expressed in living.  Shame is cleansed by forgiveness. That’s one means of purifying the heart of humanity.  Another way is by the fire of nuclear fission.  But then there would be no flesh left with which to start over, as in the days of Noah and his family.  Let us opt for the fire of Love — and grant God his wish that none should perish but that all should come to enjoy life eternal in Paradise restored — for, as Black Elk encouraged, It may be that some little root of the sacred tree still lives. Nourish it then, that it may leaf and bloom and fill with singing birds.”

I will add this YouTube clip with Dr Bruce Lipton to this post as it alerts us all to an opportunity at hand to collectively create in our consciousness the vision of Paradise NOW and change our future. 

Until my next post,  

Be love. Be loved.

Anthony

tpal70@gmail.com

Paradise Remembered

“Myth is the history of the soul”  

William Erwin Thompson penned those words. The Paradise myth, along with all the legends and stories about the “First People” handed down through the ages, are vivid and haunting reminders of our origins.  Who among us does not have a deep desire to live in Paradise—or for Paradise to be restored here on Earth?  It’s the unconscious impetus in our quest for the American Dream: “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”  It’s what we seek and hope to find in most of our endeavors to make a comfortable and happy life for ourselves and for our families—and why we go to the wilderness and camp out in the forests and national parks.  We want to be in Paradise, if only for a few days and nights filling our eyes and hearts with “Kodak moments,” camping out under the stars, and sitting by a stream of cool, clear water drinking in the golden silence and peaceful beauty of the Natural World. 

Ken Burns has performed an outstanding service bringing the pristine peace and beauty of the natural world to the television for all to enjoy with his documentaries on the National Parks and Monuments airing on PBS again this weekend. Thanks primarily to John Muir, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln, thousands of square miles of undeveloped lands and mountain ranges have been preserved and set aside for us and our progeny to visit and be nourished by and reminded of the Paradise our planet Earth still is—inspired even to do our parts in keeping it that way.

VISIONS and MEMORIES of PARADISE

I’ve been reading my friend Richard Heinberg’s MEMORIES and VISIONS of PARADISE for the second or third time since it came into my hands many years ago, and my longing for Paradise has been quickened once again, this time with even deeper yearning.  Reading some of the stories about a once Golden Age when we were more angelic than human, and we spoke with the animals who “spoke” with us, I can almost taste the clean, fresh air and feel the pristine, magical Eden atmosphere. Here are a few memories from Richard’s book of what our ancestors, the “First People,” were like in the mythical Garden of Paradise:

The myths and traditions of the ancients do not portray Eden as the sort of technological Paradise that our present civilization tends to project into the future. If the Golden Age really existed, it must instead have been, as the Chinese describe it, an Age of Perfect Virtue—an age in which

they were upright and correct, without knowing that to be so was righteousness; they loved one another, without knowing that to do so was benevolence; they were honest and leal-hearted with­out knowing that it was loyalty; they fulfilled their engagements, without knowing that to do so was good faith; in their simple movements they employed the services of one another, without thinking that they were conferring or receiving any gift. There­fore their actions left no trace, and there was no record of their affairs.” *

They were kind and affectionate:

“The ability of human beings and animals to understand one another resulted in a condition, according to fifth-century B.C. philosopher Empedocles, ‘All were gentle and obedient to men, both animals and birds, and they glowed with kindly affection towards one another.'” *

They were radiant and could fly:

“According to virtually all accounts, human beings in the paradisal age were possessed of qualities and abilities that can only be called miraculous.

“They were wise, all-knowing, and able to communicate easily not only with one another but with other living things; moreover, they could fly through the air, and they shone with visible light.” *

They were wise and godlike in appearance:

“In contrast to the contemporary view of early humans as dull and brutish, the myths speak of them as sages. In Jewish folklore, Adam is described as being so wise and so beautiful to behold that the creatures of the Earth mistook him for the Creator and, together with the angels of Heaven, bowed down and chanted, ‘Holy, holy, holy.’ It is also said that God revealed the whole of the future to Adam, as well as the geography of the entire Earth. In these respects, Adam resembled Adapa, the Babylonian First Man, who ‘was equipped with vast intelligence …. His plane of wisdom was the plane of heaven’” The ancient Mayans similarly described the four First People as wise and all-knowing. According to the Popul Vuh, the Mayan book of lore and customs, the people of the first age were so perceptive that when ‘they lifted up their eyes … their gaze embraced all; they knew all things; nothing in heaven or earth was concealed from them.’ These created ones rendered thanks, saying,“‘Truly, thou gavest us every motion and accomplishment! We have received existence, we have received a mouth, a face; we speak, we understand, we think, we walk; we perceive and we know equally well what is far and what is near; we see all things, great and small, in heaven and upon the earth. Thanks be to you who created us, 0 Maker, 0 Former!'”*

AN AGE OF INNOCENCE 

The Golden Age was an age of innocence; its inhabitants simple and childlike—much like the late and memorialized Mr. Rogers as portrayed by Tom Hanks in the movie “Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.” With Richard’s permission, I will share a few excerpts from his thoroughly researched and captivating book, with little if any commentary from me.  I invite you to just read the stories and let the magic they still hold enchant your heart as you ponder them deeply in your imagination.  They may even trigger up memories of Paradise from out of the collective unconscious, as they did for me, and quicken in you an inspiration to live as though in Paradise.  Perhaps the adage “To become, act as if” may apply in our shared work of creating a heavenly home for our Creator here on Earth. Legends tell of a time when the Creator lived with his Creation and walked with Man in the Garden of Eden.  Listen to these stories.

ONCE UPON A TIME all human beings lived in friendship and peace, not only among themselves but with all other living things as well. The people of that original Age of Innocence were wise, shining beings who could fly through the air at will, and who were in continual communion with cosmic forces and intelligences. But a tragic disruption brought the First Age to an end, and humanity found itself estranged from both Heaven and Nature. Ever since then we have lived in a fragmented way, never really understanding ourselves or our place in the Universe. But occasionally we look back, with longing and regret, and dream of a return to the Paradise we once knew. . . .

The tribes of central and southern Africa preserved myths of an original time when the celestial God and human beings were friends, before the separation of Heaven and Earth. It was an age that was typified in the saying of the Ngombe tribe of Zaire: “In the beginning there were no men on earth. The people lived in the sky with Akongo and they were happy.” Ethnologist Paul Schebesta recorded the following tradition from the Bambuti Pygmies of central Africa:

After God had created the world and men, he dwelt among them. He called them his children. They gave him the name of father. … He showed himself a good father to men for he so placed them in this world that they could live without much effort and were above all free from care and fear. Neither ele­ments nor animals were inimical to man and foodstuffs grew ready to his hand. In short, the world was a paradise as long as God dwelt among men. He was not visible to them but he was in their midst and spoke to them.”

Summarizing African myths about the First Age, folklorist Herman Baumann wrote:

In the view of the natives, everything that happened in the primal age was different from today: people lived forever and never died; they understood the language of animals and lived at peace with them; they knew no labor and had food in plenitude, the effortless gathering of which guaranteed them a life without care; there was no sexuality and no reproduction—in brief, they knew nothing of all those fundamental factors and attitudes which move people today’

It was only when the people set themselves against the other creatures that God was driven away and the original harmony of Nature was destroyed.

And that will be the consideration of my next post in this series. Until then,

Be love. Be loved

Anthony

tpal70@gmail.com

Credits: 

* Richard Heinberg, MEMORIES and VISIONS of PARADISE — Exploring the Universal Myth of a Lost Golden Age. 

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