You Can’t Trap a Fire Phoenix
We’re all an integral part of the largest symphony in the world… and it’s called Earth
Just one big living, breathing organism!
If you think of yourself as separate, you’re not. It’s your ego that tells you you’re separate. See, that’s the ego’s job: to tell you you’re a separate being. And that’s ok. There’s a reason for that. It serves a function in this whole life that we are a part of.
You see, we are the beings that bring self consciousness. We are the ones making the universe aware of itself. We are the light bringers!
You may think of enlightenment as something that only serves yourself, or humanity; but in fact it serves the entire world, indeed the entire universe!
Your enlightenment, your spiritual evolution is something that sets aglow the entire universe and every star and planet in it. Not one single being goes untouched by your spiritual evolution! Because it’s not really just your spiritual evolution; we are a part of this larger life, this entire greater being that we call existence.
We are the awakeners of God! We are the micro of the macro. The universal spark of the divine lives inside each one of us; inside our hearts! And rather than letting our egos get lost in the mix of what’s going on while we are figuring it out, we can simply look for the divine spark in ourselves, and in those around us!
Once our light is turned on, once we become aware of our spark, we can begin to fan it into a flame, and begin to connect with people with our heart light on, with our fire burning.
Rather than getting caught up in all the little trappings of ego; you know, the judgements, the wanting to control others, and all the curious little habits; we can simply look for their spark of the divine and ask ourselves: how much of the great divine impulse lives in this person?
By making connections in this way, with an opened perspective to really wanting to connect with people in how they are as a higher being, not just what they mean for me or how they can serve my wants, needs, my desires; but in really understanding each person as an integral part of this great universe of beings all living and breathing together, we can actually experience Higher Love.
Most often when we love it is an egotistical form of love. We love someone because of what they do for us, or how they are related to us. We have sympathy for some people, for some places or things; for others we have antipathy.
It’s circumstantially all in relation to ourselves. This is my wife, these are my kids, these are my parents, my siblings, my friends. This person helped my career, this person taught me something, this person makes me feel a certain way, etc.
And that’s ok! It’s natural, and in fact it’s a beautiful part of life that we get to have these personal relationships!
But what I’m saying is we also have the ability to see and experience the world without sympathy or antipathy; without deciding on the value of things and people only as they relate to our self.
By getting beyond the limitations of our own ego perspective we can start to see reality for what it is, in all its magnificence. We can meet reality on realities terms. This is what it takes to open up to and experience what is higher than ourselves!
We can experience the wonders of the Earth, the marvels of the cosmos, the majesty of the Spirit!
So it’s ok to have our personal relationships. In fact, it’s great! It’s okay to fulfill our personal needs, wants and desires, our personal drives… But life is even larger than that!
Those personal loves, those personal relationships, we can fall out of love with them at any point; and they can fall out of love with us.
And sometimes it hurts, because there’s attachment in it. And as the Buddha pointed out, attachment leads to suffering. But Higher Love is something beyond attachment.
Higher Love isn’t going anywhere. That kind of love is eternal and will pick us up time and time again, and connect us to the great Universal Spirit, that great something that is beyond ourselves!
It will connect us to our higher nature where we are at home as a being taking its rightful place in the great universal stream!
We Are The Centaurs
You see, as human beings, we are both lower nature and higher nature beings; all wrapped into One (we’re the Whole Shebang!)
This is represented in the centaur. In the image of the centaur we can see both the animal nature, as well as the higher nature being that can think, that looks up to the stars and receives the wisdom of the universe.
We are the centaurs! We are this being that is both lower and higher (we are of the Earth and we are of the Cosmos!); and it’s our job to bring that balance into harmony through our intent, and our effort!
We can look up to the stars and bring that higher Cosmic Spirit into the Earth.
And we can do it consciously!
The formula seems to be:
1. set our intent, while working toward it
2. let go and trust
3. be open to how the universe delivers it to us
By letting go I mean letting go of our own internal emotions that come up as we move forward in life. Letting go of our anger, our fear, our shame. Letting go into our experience…
It’s ok for us to relax. To let go into our experience. To let go of all our shame, and fear, and judgements of others, to stop trying to control everything, and just be.
Shut off all the gadgets, stop worrying about the future, and just take a walk outside. Spend some time in nature. Connect with people, and listen with a completely open mind and open heart, and just be there for them. Just be powerfully present in this moment right now.
And as we move forward in this life, in this moment, know that’s its ok to ask the universe for what you really want. To achieve anything in this life, you have to have a clear intention. You have to have intent.
Know what it is that you actually want in life!
What is it that’s going to make you feel complete? And how can you add something positive to this world?
Those two questions may be closely related…
Sense of Completion
I used to live in northern Virginia, just outside of Washington DC. It’s quite a busy place where everyone is hurrying around in suites and ties, and working in government and technology jobs that they hate, chasing money. It’s a place of unrest where everyone is putting a lot of pressure on themselves, and on each other.
And in mingling with the locals I heard the same thing from people over and over again.
They would be talking to me and eventually would say, “you know, I make a lot of money, but I’m just not happy.”
I heard this same sentiment time and time again. And often this would lead to them mentioning their parents… So these were people with a lot of expectations on their shoulders, a restless ego carrying a heavy load, with a lot of letting go to do.
Jim Carrey intelligently said, “I’ve often said that I wished people could realize all their dreams and wealth and fame so that they could see that it’s not where you’re gonna find your sense of completion.”
When I was young I thought the purpose of my life was to be this rich rockstar. I was gonna show the world what a great musician I am, and enjoy all the perks of being rich and famous… That side of my musicianship was something completely driven by ego. And ego will do that; it will keep you trapped inside of your mind chasing more and more until statues are raised in your honor and you become immortal…
Well that’s an illusion; because no one will live forever. Each one of us is going to die. Not someday far off in the future; the only moment that exists is right now, and it’s something we will do in this eternal now, when it is our time to leave this body.
So best to start living and loving right now!
Stand tall and live with gratitude!
Gratitude for everything you have going for you: your health, the people in your life, the vast experiences you’ve had and still may have, the opportunities that are constantly open to you, your every breath, and the fact that you were able to have a life on this good green earth in the first place, for however long it may last.
We’ve all heard inspiring words before.
We all know the ring of the truth when we hear it…
So what’s holding us back?
It’s a sad truth that we all carry scars… from childhood, from our teenage years, and we carry these as adults. It’s almost as if as we enter adulthood these scars wash up on our shore and we have no idea what to do with them. All we’ve really learned is how to use our ego to drive ourselves forward.
We don’t know how to heal from a close family member dying, an abusive parent or a childhood trauma.
We just know how to pick ourselves up and move forward in our life and tell ourselves that we’re better than that.
And we find supplements in our life: a replacement parent, a friend we love like a sibling. And don’t get me wrong, these relationships can be golden. A special person in our life can help us move forward.
But how do we actually get down to the root cause and heal ourselves?
Our culture is very materialistic. It doesn’t teach us how to deal with ourselves as soul/spiritual beings. We simply don’t learn the skills to know how to deal with the scars we carry.
And so these scars become unconscious. We habitually bury them and do everything we can to ignore them. But the problem is they set unconscious patterns in our life that we live out over and over again. We find ourselves in the same situation over and over again, dating the same person over and over again, or whatever it is…
Well behind all these patterns are deeper emotional scars. A family member was abusive, a parent left when we were young, our father passed away; whatever your case may be…
The healing occurs when we face these things. Not just by trying to think our way through them, that’s the ego just trying to cleverly solve everything; but by feeling them out!
We feel them out, and we feel them out, as much as we need to; even crying them out if needed. And we let them go…
When we face these things and we feel them out enough, it’s almost as if the feeling runs out. We feel a sense of relief, and we let it go. This is often accompanied by a sigh, or a deep breath, and a feeling of release.
This is the technique:
1. Face into it
2. Feel it out
3. and let it go
And when you do let it go these patterns in your life simply dissipate. And once you have cleared your trauma you may live life more free! Free from your own stuff that you yourself were carrying (for it is actually our ego that holds onto this stuff) and able to start living your life consciously choosing for yourself what you want without being hindered by the things that were internally holding you back.
Most people fear this process because they’re worried that if they fully face their feelings then they will overwhelm them. I’m here to tell you that they won’t. That’s just your fear. Be brave and face yourself!
As you feel it out and do your letting go all the realizations will come. You will literally recapitulate your life and get a much clearer perspective on how it has all gone down. You will understand yourself, humanity, and how you connect with others much more surely and deeply; and will be able to have much more meaningful experiences and connections with others. You will live your life on a much more open and free plain!
The Purpose of My Life
I’ve come to realize that one of the real purposes of my life is to connect genuinely and powerfully in this moment with others. To be present with them with my heart light on. To help them shine a little brighter by simply being here with them, opening up to them, accepting and really listening to them. To relieve their suffering. To experience joy together. To do inner work together. To have a sense of compassion and understand that there is far more to this person before me than I could ever imagine! To help them light their spark of the Divine!
The path of learning guitar was never about being viewed as a rockstar. It’s about really digging deep and seeing what I can find, and what I can do. And for me it’s always been about connecting with Spirit through music!
And the music was never about showing off my guitar skills, it’s about connecting with other people. It’s about having presence, and experiencing reality in all its glory with genuine interest! And it’s about providing a pathway for others to do the same.
Accepting others means accepting their dark side as well. You can’t really fully love someone unless you have accepted all of them. Often when we get in a conversation with someone, as soon as we see anything of their darker nature, we just want to get away. There’s an unconscious belief there; fear that that will hurt us, or destroy us. But it won’t.
Jordan Peterson had an intelligent talk with Joe Rogan about the belly of the beast, and facing darkness with strength. And he spoke of how in facing the darkness in our lives with the right strength we grow exponentially in ways that we would not have otherwise. It’s okay for us to face the darkness, in ourselves and in others.
When the darkness of others pops up before us, we can just say, “you know what, that’s okay,” and just accept them. Doing so can be healing, for both of us; and we might make a real connection, we might even find love.
Or it might be just another passing conversation… But in that moment that person received witness and approval; which is something we all want on a very deep level.
You’re not just a light shining brightly for yourself, you’re a light shining brightly for all!
And each one of you is a deep mystery!
It’s All Perfect
The truth of reality is: it’s all perfect.
Everything is exactly the way it is meant to be right now! Not one single detail is out of place. It’s all moving the way it should be, according to a higher guidance. Yes, even all the suffering and all the sickness. It’s all meant for us, and the entire world, and the entire universe to grow in a certain way. To achieve a certain goal. And that goal is beyond what our ego thinks we want for ourselves and what we think is good and right. Because again, when you get beyond your ego you can see the higher order to things. You can see the balance. You can hear it all breathing together, and know that you are a part of that breath as well. You are breathing with the entire universe, right now!
We are all One!
So what is this higher goal?
If we look at humanities past, the farther back we go we see a natural connection to Spirit; a natural atavistic clairvoyance that was humanities inheritance. In times long past it was natural for people to look up to the stars and into the kingdoms of nature and see everywhere spiritual beings. To deny their existence in those times of antiquity would have been just as ridiculous as if you were to deny the existence of a chair sitting in the room there with you.
That natural inheritance has been exhausted. The well has dried up.
We have traded that gift for our living fully enmeshed in the physical world; which serves a purpose.
Most of humanity now lives in a state where we reside solely in our upper ego consciousness and only experience what our physical senses can tell us of the world around us, and our thinking is thereby bound to the sense bound intellect. We live wholly in the physical world.
This is the great descent. The Fall.
And for those who still have a deep instinctual longing for a living connection with worlds of Spirit, existing solely in the physical world and feeling cut-off from the spiritual world comes with a certain hollow despair.
But this stage of our journey exists for a reason. For it is in the physical world that we develop self consciousness; we develop an ego, a sense of self.
Our Path Here
You see, humanities journey here on Earth may be characterized as such: the further back you go you see a sort of group soulness. Having now developed independent consciousness we may now think independently and make individual choices. In other words, we may be free!
So it is the path of freedom we are on. And it takes developing an independent conscious self here in the physical world to achieve that.
Imagine if you had a group of people who were all followers working within the will of the group. But then you took each of them and helped them grow into strong individuals, and then they chose to get together as a team and do their work. You would have a much stronger team! You would have the Dream Team!
This is akin to humanities development here on Earth. And it is through being fully enmeshed in the physical world and developing an ego, a “body” of self consciousness, that we can do this.
Now we are called to ascend once again!
To connect with the Spiritual world in a conscious way, through our own choosing; through our own willing! To take this development, this evolution, to a higher level!
Not to do so, to remain simply as physical beings fettered to the physical world, would cause us to sink deeper and deeper into maya, into the grand illusion, and sink further and further into decay. It would simply be a downward spiral.
But our pathway is UP!
Having earned through sacrifice our ability to be consciously aware in a way that was not possible to earlier humanity, and able to cognize the physical world through our own observation and thinking (which is what science is), we may now ascend to a new connection with the Divine Spirit. We must grow the new fire!
This will actually be done as a science, as a way of us being able to actually experience, to observe, and think about worlds of Spirit so that we may consciously grow into them. That we may connect with them in a conscious way.
A spiritual science, so to speak; such as was taught by Rudolf Steiner, as well as others.
Max Cavalera of the band Soulfly said, in his song Living Sacrifice, “Learn as if you’re going to live forever. Live as if you’re going to die tomorrow.”
Life is a school for us to learn and grow. For there are things we must learn and develop here that we can only do while living a life here on Earth.
In the spiritual world, all things are eternal.
Once we’ve left this life, this body, and ascended to worlds of Spirit we will carry with us that which we have. So it’s important to develop a conscious connection to Spirit here on Earth. In that way, we may be aware of and participate in worlds of Spirit.
For truly, developing a proper spiritual life here on Earth is how we grow our spiritual organs of perception (known to some as chakras, or energy centers) which allow us to perceive in worlds of Spirit.
And make no mistake, this is no abstract, arbitrary thing. Two people who have developed their spiritual sense organs will in fact perceive the same things; just as anyone with healthy eyes will perceive the color blue as blue.
Spiritual wisdom must always begin with the seers. And it is important for us to be able to think our way through facts of a soul and spiritual nature with sound, healthy reasoning.
Indeed not only our thinking, but our life of feeling must also be healthy (this is where the healing modality of letting go that I described earlier comes in). And so must our life of will; which is at least partly what this post is all about.
We must have the will to do good in the world. To live a healthy life, and to help others and have a positive effect on the world!
So what is the higher goal of living this life? To develop something that can only be developed here on Earth: spiritual cognition.
So what does all this have to do with playing music?
It has everything to do with it, because how you live your life is how you play your guitar!
It’s all connected!
Do you live a lazy life of ease and comfort? Or do the words carpe diem, seize the day, truly have meaning for you?
How you go about your day, how you do your duties in life, how you wash dishes, how you connect with others, how you make love, how loving or fearful you are, if you take chances or if you’re adventurous… All these things are reflected in how you play guitar!
How deeply do you think?
How passionately do you feel?
How awake is your will?
In what kind of state are you really in right now? Would you say that you have a strong connection to Spirit? Because this is deeply connected with exactly how you play and how you express music!
You have to have a genuine interest and a living love for what you are doing!
This is how you play music!
Set your heart on fire!
Be a dynamic genius!
Pick up your guitar and play it like you’ve never played it before!!!
SET YOUR GUITAR ON FIRE AND RELEASE THE FIRE PHOENIX!!!
“It’s a joke, I’m kidding man… You can’t trap a Fire Phoenix. I mean, that would be crazy, right” 😋
Virtual Guitar Lessons
Thanks for reading!!!
I hope you enjoyed this deeper, and at times silly, post!
If you would like to connect through online guitar lessons feel free to give me a call or you can sign up using the contact button at the top of the page 😊
Bless you on your journey 🙏
*Artwork in this post by Alex Grey