On an equatorial band circling the earth our ancestors felt the need to build pyramids. Why?
Over the course of a thousand years no less than five world religions were born that are still a source of faith and practice to billions of people around the world. Why?
Over the last hundred years scientists have probed deep into the nature of material existence itself, uncovering a wild and whacky quantum universe unimaginable until our day were it not for the visions and experiences of shamans and mystics. What they discovered has caused even the most secular people to ask the question, "Why?"
The great questions of humanity have been the same for as long as there have been humans around to ask them: "Who are we?"..."Why are we here?"..."What is our purpose?"... "Is there more?"
Two Views of Reality
There are two prevailing human opinions as to why religion exists.
The first position is that expressed by Karl Marx. He believed religion to be a human invention designed to salve over the human need to solve questions about the great Unknown: “Man makes religion, religion does not make man … Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.”
The second is the view that postulates an “Other,” another side “out there.” People who subscribe to this hypothesis believe that there really is a great Unknown, and that we can communicate with It, and It with us. It can be illustrated like this:
The circle represents all that is. The curved line separates the Material world, the world of matter and all that we see and touch, from the Spiritual world, a world beyond the reach of test tube and microscope. This line, however, is not really solid. Both religion and quantum theory open doors and windows that allow us to see through the line, opening up vistas between the two worlds.
But there comes a point in our development when we have to understand, not just as an intellectual exercise but in the very fiber of our being, with all our mind and heart, that the circle has no perimeter, and that the line is an illusion.
What I mean by that rather Zen-like statement is this: Religion, going all the way back to the earliest forms of Shamanism, does, indeed, attempt to bridge the gap between the material world and the metaphysical, or spiritual, world. It may even prove to be the thing that made us human in the first place.
All the dissension and outright hatred abroad today takes a toll on us. I can't get out and work to change the world anymore. I'm too old. But I can write. Recently I was moved to write a parable for our times called "Hatred and the Muse." I hope it will serve as a symbol of hope for what sometimes feels like a hopeless world.
Hatred & The Muse
"Navigating Your Future With Dowsing"
Jim Willis presented "Dowsing in Quantum Reality: Age-Old Techniques for a New-Age" at the American Society of Dowsers convention in June.
Dowsing, like every other technology, is subject to change over time. Because dowsers operate on a deeply intuitive level, our mental processes, shaped by prevailing culture, can sometimes work to our disadvantage if we are not careful. Thinking and reasoning, the generally accepted ways of functioning these days, are not bad things. But if left unexamined they can sometimes hinder us. Our social environment shapes us in quiet and unacknowledged ways. This raises a question: How does a thinking, educated dowser in the 21st century approach a craft that was discovered and practiced by people who lived thousands of years ago?
Although the presentation covered dowsing, it also tackled some of the toughest questions we can ask today… Where did we come from? What is our purpose? What happens when this life is over? Pouring a lifetime of study, sermons and seminars into this presentation, it is now available on YouTube. In his words, "I feel that it is important and relevant in today's world, combining an age old craft with cutting edge science. Some of you will recognize a few of the stories I share. A few will recognize the song I sing at the beginning. Many will learn something new in areas from dowsing to quantum physics. In short, this sums up much of what I have learned after a lifetime of experience and teaching."
From Religion to Reality: "One Ring to Rule Them All"
The Search for Meaning in the World of Religion
40,000 years ago, across Europe and Asia, our ancestors felt the need to crawl deep underground, sometimes as much as a mile, braving the depths and darkness, to paint magnificent images on the walls of caves. Why?
Six miles from Urfa, an ancient city in Southeast Turkey, stand the ruins of a megalithic temple called Gobekli Tepe. Built 11,600 years ago, before the Agricultural Revolution, before humans had discovered how to grow their own food to support such an endeavor, it begs the question, why?
Six thousand years later humans dragged stones, weighing up to four tons, 140 miles across England to build a monument called Stonehenge. Why?
Copyright Jim Willis. All rights reserved.