Towards the Silent Heart

kitchen table philosophy


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Why ask why?

by Joseph Raffa

ID-10066300What use is it to ask the why and wherefore?
Birds fly, grasses grow without fuss or bother.
Only man torments himself with questions. Life goes on regardless.
Does life, the universe need reasons for its existence? Or is this the invention of the human mind, bent on understanding in this way?
Apart from man, life does not reason why. There is birth, growth, decay and death but the system goes on and on.
Only man suffers the torment of an inquisitive reason. So, everything is wrapped in reason and man is satisfied.
Sometimes I wonder if modern man belongs to the natural order of things – or is he an aberration? Long ago, before his present state of displacement he was close to the earth and the sky, to the seasons, to the green world and the sea.
Then he broke away and became civilized with all its attendant problems and deep sense of separation. Now technologically competent and reason wise he seems lost in an alien world, divorced from the wonder that surrounds him.
More’s the pity. His mind is ever busy and overflowing with movement.
But what of the heart, of that inner need to return to the magic that once he knew? When the Springtime of Life was ablaze with wonder and he walked in kinship with all that surrounded him and asked not questions of why and what?
For there was no need for this. He was at one with the All that Is and that was all that mattered. All else was secondary and of lesser consequence to the expanded state of his exalted Being.

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Awaken the self

Image courtesy of dan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Dan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

By Joseph Raffa

Every human undertaking has its Hall of Fame. Science, medicine, sport, war –  you name it, all have their heroes, the greats who have left a distinguished mark in the social mainstream.

Religion, too, has its heroes – men who walked in harmony with God, enlightened men, moral supermen and women. They too left an indelible mark and their influence lingers long after they have gone.

The greats have become inspirational stepping stones. Their lives and deeds are held up to lesser mortals as worthy of emulation. “Look up to them,” we are told. “See what can be accomplished by dedicated people. Do likewise and lift your living.”

So, tradition settles in and carves its own channel of supportive endeavour; indeed, it becomes an authority rarely to be questioned, something to be accepted as the cornerstone on which to base human living. Being lost and uncertain, feeling perhaps entities of little value, we listen and lodge ourselves in the traditional byways offered to us. We enclose ourselves in traditional cocoons and outlooks and these become the shrouds of security that we are reluctant to cast aside.

The greats speak with such authority. The legacy they have left us in all walks of life makes it difficult for us not to turn to them in our time of need as a source of certainty, reassurance and inspiration. Why then should we divest ourselves of these influences? And what would we replace them with, we who are empty, confused, even lost in time’s seductive embrace?

If the words and experiences of the greats are wisely used, they will not become a crutch that we hold on to forever. Rather they should be seen as an encouragement to explore the human content, to investigate the human relationship with everything going on within and without.

Intelligence that relies on another is not intelligence. To awaken is the only worthwhile purpose in life. To awaken to what we are, to what is going on around us, in our hearts and minds. It is little use to worship at the shrine of past endeavours if we continue to sleep in time, in ignorance of our true nature.

Understanding demands self-reliance, a looking inwards and learning without intellectual restraints. The guidelines of the past are not for the young and adventurous in spirit, for those eager to travel to the timeless heart of human nature.

Whatever we learn in life, whatever teachers we have, there comes a time, if we are to mature, to let go of all the hands we have held for support. Otherwise we will never know the joy of walking alone. Love, truth, demand that we walk inwardly alone. Self-discovery can only take place when we are alone, when all else that prevents discovery – the barriers raised by the mind, the accumulation of timeful experience – have been discarded.

In that great aloneness that is there when authority and self-protection have been put aside, we join the essence that raised the spiritual greats onto the highest pedestal of human acclaim. We see then that there is only Oneness, not great and small; that distinction and divisions belong to the mind, not to the essence. And what is to be worshiped is “that” which comes when the mind is still.

Out of this stillness comes love, respect and maybe service, but that belongs to time where these are effective, each in their way. Essence is complete in what it is and that which joins the essence sees itself in the same light.

That’s the way of it.


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A spiritual impulse is abroad

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Image courtesy of Evgeni Dinev at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

by Joseph Raffa

There is an ocean of spirituality pouring over this planet – irresistible, invincible, all powerful. Undercurrents are flowing from within. Boosted by enlightened avenues, its magnetic power is crystalised in time. The enlightened ones are its voice – the eyes and ears of the Spiritual Strangeness. This is moving to reclaim the human race, to save it from the darkness of spiritual ignorance, from domination by the aggressive and selfish nature of the self – of the mind acting in isolation from the mainstream of life.

Like an electric spark, spiritual awareness is leaping from person to person, spark igniting spark. Its purpose? A great awakening – the extension of its nature, in full awareness into the hearts and minds of the human inhabitants of this planet. For too long the darkness of the mind has reigned. The suffering, the starvation, the violence, the endless torment has been too much. At times the human race has teetered on the edge of a psychological breakdown, almost on the edge of inner and outer destruction. The tensions have been well nigh unbearable.

From the Spiritual Heartland the call has gone forth: Save the Earth. Save the people. And so, from their timeless sleep, deep in the safety of an undisturbed mystery, there arose to venture forth in human form amidst the blight on this planet, creatures of the light. Those who are of its essence. Their mission, one of service, their role, agents of love.

Inspired by the nature they belong to, they walk this earth amidst alien surrounds, seeking to plant the seeds of enquiry, urging an investigation that is not controlled by the mind’s background of conditioning. They meet resistance from established attitudes wherever they go. Only those who are beginning to awaken are receptive to what is offered. Only they have the perception to realise its exceptional value.

In this meeting, between enlightened expression and earnest seeker, the seeds are set for a new kind of harvest. Sometime, when all the conditions are right, a blossoming burgeons into time, irresistibly flowering into the fullness of discovery. And so, another human expression takes wings, uplifted and inspired and a little more momentum is given to the spiritual enlightenment of the human race on this planet.

May you all join, each of you in your turn in this grand awakening.