The Distortion of Truth

Inspired by the actions of Mother Teresa, business mogul Adetayo Williams formed “Rise Up Africa,” a nonprofit organization with the mission to end the cycle of poverty in Sub-Sahara Africa. He invested all his wealth and energy towards the realization of his vision of an Africa where every child has the resources to develop his or her innate talents, thereby making it possible for them to contribute to the prosperity of their society as adults.

Mr. Williams attracted like-minded people who contributed their various skills and resources to the project. Gradually “Rise Up Africa” grew to become one of the most respected nonprofit organizations in the world. By the time of Mr. Williams’ death, the organization had slashed poverty in Sub-Sahara Africa by thirty percent.

The new chief executive officer, John Akorie, sincerely wished to fulfill his duties in accord with Mr. Williams’ vision so he devoted the greater part of his energy to the financial security of the organization. “The more financially stable the organization is, the more we can continue on the path indicated to us by the great Adetayo Williams,” he often told his staff.

Years went by and slowly the quality of service to the children began to suffer. The greatest minds in education, medicine, arts and business development who had eagerly worked with “Rise Up Africa” were no longer assisting the organization because Adetayo Williams’ passion for the kids, which fueled their enthusiasm, was absent. Contributions dwindled and the once great organization became insignificant. John Akorie’s intention was respectable but he made one subtle but drastic mistake; he allowed the welfare of the organization take precedence over the children it was founded to serve.

…….

Over the course of history, the earth has been blessed with many great prophets who showed the path to Light and Truth. Soon after their departure from the earth man began distorting these teachings, although sometimes unintentional but nonetheless harmful. The reason for this was simply the shift of focus from the essence of the teaching to the maintenance of the organization or religion. Truth cannot be arranged, molded or classified, when an attempt is made to arrange truth, the truth becomes a lie.

“Fools and intelligent people are equally undamaging. Half-fools and half-sages, these are the most dangerous of all.”

~ Johann Wolfgang Von Geothe

The Right Mentor

The Right MentorSamuel has been overweight for years but his weight never bothered him. He walks with his head held high and takes great pride in his work as a janitor at a law firm in downtown Boston.

On a normal Tuesday afternoon at work, he receives an urgent call from a nearby hospital about his mother who was just rushed in after a heart attack. Samuel’s mother was also obese and her obesity caused the buildup of plaque on the inside of her coronary arteries which decreased the space through which blood could flow to her heart muscle, hence the heart attack.

Upon arriving at the hospital and seeing his mother, Samuel decides to change his lifestyle and lose weight. He cannot afford a gym membership or a nutritionist so he asks his friend, Melissa, for advice. Melissa is very intelligent and knows a lot about the recommended daily servings of each food group, the various types of exercises and even the health risks of obesity but there is one problem… she is obese.

Susan on the other hand, is quiet but is in tip top shape. She is not as intelligent as Melissa but she puts to practice the little she knows. Samuel quickly learns that Melissa cannot be of use to him because she always speaks of workout routines she has read about but never actually done. So he goes to Susan and she shows him a simple ten minute circuit training workout she does every morning which he decides to adopt. After two months and six hundred minutes of exercise, Samuel was astonished with the results of the simple exercise routine. He had lost fifteen pounds and felt much healthier than he had in years.

…….

An alert man will seek his mentors among those who have become what he aspires to be and not those who merely speak eloquently about it.

Prayer

PrayForty nine year old George Sanders stands before a high school audience in Mendalhall High School, Mississippi to present a speech about his life and lessons learned along the way. He brings out a notepad and begins reading his written down speech. The audience listen to his words but it stirs nothing within them because his words are lifeless.

George’s words lack depth and are unable to penetrate to the spirit of his listeners because most of his energy is used up in reading carefully to ensure he gets the words right, leaving little energy left to bring to life intuitively the experiences he wishes to share.

George, being an observant man, realizes his ineffectiveness and puts down his notepad. He seeks the audience’s pardon and starts his speech over. This time he allows the pictures of his life experiences arise within him first and then he simply clothes these pictures with the first words that come to mind. All his energy is used in calling these experiences to life and no energy is wasted in reading or memorization. The audience was so captivated by Mr. Sanders’ story that the thirty minutes allotted for questions and answers evolved into a two hour session.

What can we take from this in regards to prayer?

It is difficult to speak from the heart when reading or memorizing and only what comes from deep within has real life. We too can easily decipher the difference between a spontaneous prayer of gratitude and a prayer rattled off routinely. Words lacking life cannot ascend to the heights where HE to whom we pray resides.

O.M.G- A Dangerous Phrase

“OMG” is a common phrase we hear often in the course of the day.  In fact, it is now almost an automatic reaction to unexpected excitement, tragedy, disbelief or frustration. What danger lies in the use of this phrase? The story of the boy who cried wolf comes to mind. The villagers came running out as they heard the boy cry “wolf” only to meet him laughing. They warned him only to cry “wolf” when there was actually a wolf. Once again, the boy cried “wolf”- once again the villagers came running and there was no wolf. The third time, there was actually a wolf- the boy cried “wolf…wolf,” this time no one came.

In this case, the boy’s crying was of no value anymore so the villagers paid no attention to him. His words were meaningless for he played around with what he should take seriously. It is the same with the word, “God” – through this word and the concept behind the word; one can gain connection to The Creator of the universe in his most pressing hour of need. The power behind this word is unmistakably evident to him who uses it only in deep reverence. If this word loses its value through toying around with it, one can no longer gain a connection to the Source of all goodness through this word.  It then becomes an empty sound lacking any power.

The Illusion of Freedom

Let The Spirit Lead

Rê was the invisible master and guide of Nebenteru, Pharaoh of Caught in WebEgypt. Rê’s sagacity was unmatched by that of any mortal but he lacked love. He was cunning and expected servitude from those he gave advice. Nebenteru was very well aware of Rê’s cunning nature but he enjoyed the renown which his obedience to Rê brought him.

He decided he would acknowledge Rê as the overlord of Egypt, relying on his cleverness to rule the nation as Pharaoh but retain his independence as his own master.  “I don’t belong to Rê, I arrange my personal life according to my own desires and inclinations; you must learn to draw the line against Rê’s influence over you,” he often told his son.

After many years, Nebenteru became ill and lay on his death bed. Rê appeared by his bed side looking down on him with a derisive smile. “Away with you Rê, you have no business here. I don’t belong to you; I always held the reins of my destiny using my intellect as my guide. I am my own master,” said the dying Pharaoh.

“You fool, who do you think guides your intellect? Every decision you made both as Sovereign of Egypt and as a man were subject to my influence over you through your intellect. You really think you could make use of me and just push me aside as you please; you must think you are cleverer than I? The stronger your belief in your freedom was, the firmer was my hold over you.”

…….

We too often think that we are our own master. Upon honest reflection, one realizes that most of our decisions are greatly influenced by external factors- whether it be the desire to be admired, fame, money, status, etc. True freedom cannot be found where the intellect dominates; it exists only where the intellect is guided by the Spirit.

What can I get? – Here the intellect dominates                                                  How can I serve? Here the intellect is guided by the spirit

“No one is more a slave than the one who thinks he is free without being free”

~Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

*Inspired from an Account of The Life of Nemare

What is my PIN?

ATM

Looking Outward For Answers That Lie Within

Needing some money to catch a cab to a party, Sarah stops by a Bank of America ATM. She inserts her card and enters her personal identification number. Incorrect PIN flashes on the screen; she thinks… what is my PIN again? I know it begins with 1986, my year of birth, but what are the last two numbers? She tries 198605 but gets the same incorrect PIN message.

The line behind her is getting restless and in her panic she turns to the gentleman next in line behind her, a complete stranger, for his help with her PIN. The stranger pulls her aside and kindly tells her, “Nobody here can help you with your PIN. If you cannot remember it, call Bank of America and they will remind you of the numbers.”

…….

Sarah’s question seems silly but is it any different from looking to others for direction regarding one’s life purpose? A person can ask his well accomplished neighbor about how he discovered his life’s purpose but anything more will be of no avail to him. Only within each person lies the answer to this question. Earnestly searching within for the abilities slumbering there is the only way. When in need of a reminder, we can humbly look upwards to HIM who placed the abilities within each one of us.

The King and His Four Wives

Once upon a time there was a rich King who had four wives. He loved the fourth wife the most and adorned her with rich robes and treated her to the finest of delicacies. He gave her nothing but the best.

He also loved the third wife very much and was always showing her off to neighboring kingdoms. However, he feared that one day she would leave him for another.

He also loved his second wife. She was his confidant and was always kind, considerate and patient with him. Whenever the King faced a problem, he could confide in her, and she would help him get through the difficult times.

The King’s first wife was a very loyal partner and had made great contributions in maintaining his wealth and kingdom. However, he did not love the first wife. Although she loved him deeply, he hardly took notice of her!

One day, the King fell ill and he knew his time was short. He thought of his luxurious life and wondered, I now have four wives with me, but when I die, I will be all alone.”

Thus, he asked the fourth wife, “I have loved you the most, endowed you with the finest clothing and showered great care over you. Now that I am dying, will you follow me and keep me company?”

“No way!”, replied the fourth wife, and she walked away without another word. Her answer cut like a sharp knife right into his heart.

The sad King then asked the third wife, “I have loved you all my life. Now that I’m dying, will you follow me and keep me company?”

“No!”, replied the third wife. “Life is too good! When you die, I am going to remarry!” His heart sank and turned cold.

He then asked the second wife, “I have always turned to you for help and you have always been there for me. When I die, will you follow me and keep me company?”

“I am sorry, I cannot help you out this time!”, replied the second wife. “At the very most, I can only walk with you to your grave.” Her answer struck him like a bolt of lightning, and the King was devastated.

Then a voice called out: “I will go with you. I will follow you no matter where you go.” The King looked up, and there was his first wife. She was very skinny as she suffered from malnutrition and neglect.

Greatly grieved, the King said, “I should have taken much better care of you when I had the chance!”

In truth, we too have four wives in our lives:

The fourth wife is our body. No matter how much time and effort we lavish in making it look good, it is temporary and will be left behind

The third wife is our possessions, status and wealth. When we die, it will all go to others.

The second wife is our family and friends. No matter how much they have been there for us, the furthest they can stay by us is up to the grave.

And the first wife is the Spirit – often neglected in pursuit of wealth, power and pleasures of the world. Cultivate, strengthen and cherish it now for the state of the spirit is all that really matters. All else is secondary.

Author- Unknown

A Farmer’s Insight

vietnamese-farmer-watering-crop-16131551Why Leave Heaven for Earth?

In a small village, a young farmer was lost in thought as he watered his crops. He could not understand why children were born into this world if Heaven was immensely more beautiful.

“Leaving Heaven for Earth, why this retrogression,” he quietly asked .

The next day, as he planted corn seeds, a picture suddenly arose within him.

He paused … and then voiced a question, “could a man’s descent to Earth be likened to that of a corn seed into the soil?”

A corn seed has within it the potential to feed thousands but this potential cannot be realized until the seed journeys down beneath the soil. It needs this transition in order to develop all its innate qualities after which it rises as a plant bearing rich fruits and adding value to its environment.

Perhaps man too is an unconscious seed with bountiful potential prior to his descent to Earth and needs the experiences acquired while on Earth in order to develop his innate qualities. After which he rises from the Earth as a fully conscious human spirit able to actively participate in the joyful activities of Heaven.

“It must be so,” said the young farmer. He smiled at the simplicity of it all and was thankful for his new insight.

Is there Life after Death?

Birth and Death

In the belly of a pregnant woman were twin brothers, Mark and Matthew, in conversation.

baby in belly

Mark: Do you believe in life after birth?

Matthew: Certainly, perhaps we will run on our two feet and eat with our mouths

Mark: Run on our two feet, are you crazy? Eat with our mouths? The umbilical cord feeds us.

Matthew: There has to be something out there, I feel it. I just cannot explain it.

Mark: This is foolishness, childbirth ends all life.

Matthew: What about mother? There has to be a mother out there who will take care of us after birth. That proves there is life after birth.

Mark: Mother? What mother, do you see any mother? It is just you and I here.

Matthew: She is all around us, we live through her. Where do you think the umbilical cord comes from? When we are silent we sometimes hear her singing or feel her stroking our world.

Mark: You make a good point Mark, but I cannot be sure. No one has come back after birth to verify that there is a mother out there or life after birth.

……

The question “Do you believe in life after birth” seems silly but is it any different from asking if there is life after death? We currently dwell in the womb of the earth and will one day transition to a different plane depending on our level of spiritual maturity.

The answers to the great questions of life need not remain a mystery, they sometimes lie in the midst of everyday experiences.

Author- Unknown