Conversations with Omen XIX

Omen, I know you’ve said that you can’t reveal the future to me, and I’m not exactly thinking that, but I was wondering if you could tell me about the most amazing place you’ve ever lived a life at?

“I am not being intentionally difficult when I tell you that the term ‘amazing’ is very subjective to the user of the word. Yet, I have known you in this life long enough to be able to have a good idea of what it is that you might think of as amazing. Recalling the final life I lived on this earth as a starting point, I can think of a very different place that I am fairly sure you would be amazed by. That amazement would only be felt by you if you were transported there as your current self, so you could experience the contrast with this life.”

I get it, if I were born into some super amazing place, I wouldn’t know the difference because that would be all I had ever experienced, right?

“Exactly, if one has never experienced pain, one cannot truly imagine what the relief from pain feels like. Given that you understand what I am saying, I can tell you some things about a life I lived in a place that I am sure will astound you. Please understand that in the physical sense it was a vastly different place than earth, both in the life forms there, and the natural environment. Where things were similar to your life here were in the social or communal senses. The beings there live together in large groups much like cities you are so familiar with. They have social structures, governments and various different cultures depending where you were on the planet.”

Do they look anything like we do here?

“Only in the most general sense, but let us not get into that now. Those are not the kind of differences that I wish to focus upon. In fact, let me approach this from a different angle altogether. I would like you to try and imagine some things that I will describe, and perhaps you can give me your opinion on them?”

Sure, that sounds easy enough. Go ahead.

“Can you imagine living in a society where there are no crimes committed whatsoever? A society where all of the beings respect all others as their complete and utter equals?”

Seriously? Wow, um, I mean no, I guess I can’t really imagine that being real, not here at least. No one ever doing anything bad or criminally wrong? That’s pretty hard to imagine ever happening on earth, not in my lifetime anyway.

“I am perfectly serious Thomas. I am also taking much liberty with the term ‘crimes’ since it encompasses a set of rules made by a specific society. I am speaking in the general sense though, but I am not limiting this to capital crimes either. I am speaking of all crimes, both large and small ones. There is such a place, and compared to life here, I know it sounds quite fantastic. In this place I speak of you could misplace something very valuable, even in a public space, and whomever found it would exhaust themselves attempting to return it to you. It was as if the idea was universally accepted that if something was not yours it had to be returned to the person it belonged to. No one there would have ever considered keeping something that was not their own.”

No way, I have to admit that’s pretty amazing. I really can’t imagine that ever happening here, not in a thousand years. I mean, I know there’s good people here, ones who would return a wallet they found, or a wedding ring, but that’s still pretty rare. And, if even a good person finds a wad of cash, well I think that’s damn hard to resist the temptation to just keep it.

“I agree completely Thomas, as things were not all that different during the time I last spent in an earthbound life. That is why I thought of this specific example, a culture so very different than your own that it is hard for you to imagine it.”

Everyone there was like that? I mean, weren’t there some misfits there? What about someone who just wanted to go against everything for no good reason – like an anarchist here?

“No Thomas, there simply were not any deviants there, not even one. In the particular society I am speaking of, they all took great pride in being like everyone else was. That is not to say that they were not individuals, they were not clones, nor did they all look alike either. They did have their individuality when it came to personal aspects, but socially they had very solidly shared universal values. No crimes committed, no violence, no harassments, no belittling or insulting, no inequality in any way. They were all quite supportive of each other, and all their knowledge was shared freely and gladly. There were no social hierarchies to contend with and very few civic ones either. Of the governmental and legal structures that they did have, all were designed to minimize any possible discriminations or inequalities.”

That’s pretty amazing, I’m really having a hard time imagining living in a place like that. I guess, like you said, if I was born into it I simply wouldn’t know any different. Damn, I kind of wish we would evolve towards something like that here. I’d love to live in a society that was crime free, violence free, and super equal. Seriously, I’m just enjoying the thought of being able to go wherever I would want to go and never fearing crime or violence.

“There is actually more to tell about this place if you’d like to hear it.”

Yeah, absolutely, please go on.

“They also hold very strong beliefs about helping their fellow citizens, and all participate in many different social enhancement programs. Furthermore all of that is done voluntarily simple in order to make their society function at the highest level.”

That’s really cool, all the people volunteering to help others – just because it’s the right thing to do. That’s just awesome, and it’s like the cherry on top of the sundae. But, I’m still back at the ‘no crime’ part in my mind. I can’t stop imagining how that would feel if it were true here. I mean it would reduce the fear level in any given city down to some level we’ve never known. Having zero fears about crime or violence, it just makes me so happy to fantasize about it. Please be absolutely serious with me now Omen, no one there ever goes nuts and kills other people?

“No Thomas, at least not for such a period of time than those alive there would remember. You have to realize something, they are brought up from their childhood hearing stories and folklore that involve no violence at all. No stories such as the ones here that contain violence justified by the outcome of the tale. No morality plays that feature it, no legends that embellish it in any way. They hear stories of good people doing good things for others, or living good lives just for the sake of happiness.”

Okay, even if I can absorb all of that, I still have to wonder about how it is that no one goes crazy there. Don’t they have mental illness? What about depression or even impulsive teenagers who do something dangerous and end up killing some people?

“To answer in specific would be time consuming, so rather let me say that I did not mean to indicate that there are not accidental deaths there, because there certainly are some. As for mental illness it is a bit more complicated and may not actually be comparable. What you refer to is a human condition that is somewhat unique to life here. A simple answer would be ‘no’ they do not have what you think of as mental illness there.”

That might be as amazing in itself as everything you’ve told me about that place so far. You were right about the choice of the place you have told me about, it really is pretty unbelievable. I hope I get to choose a life there someday, and I also hope that some tiny part of my life I’m living here stays in my memory so I can appreciate it all the more.

“That is quite a lot to hope for Thomas, but I do appreciate the wish you have.”

Do you think we will ever get to be like that here?

“I can not speculate on such things Thomas, so very much would have to change to make that a possibility on earth.

Conversations with Omen XVIII

I was wondering, back when you lived your earthbound lives, did people still revere the rich and famous?

“An interesting question Thomas, I hope you will tolerate a qualified answer from me. In my first earthbound life I inhabited an agrarian village on the banks of the Nile River. Although we were all aware of the powers of the families in the High House, we had almost no contact with them whatsoever. I am fairly sure that had we seen them, or knew more about them, we would have held them in high esteem. In my life as a senator of the Roman people, I suppose I was one of those that were revered by some of the people. Although I did not seek that out specifically, I can recall enjoying the adoration.”

Well sure, who wouldn’t love being admired for almost no other reason than being wealthy and powerful?

“Indeed, but that is not to say that I did not have the occasional conflicting feelings about it. There actually were times that I shunned the attention that my colleagues so dearly relished. I remember in one such case I asked a fellow senator if it wasn’t the adoration and gifts that he was interested in, and not the governing of the people. He was suitably confounded by my query, and roundly ignored me afterwards.”

Okay, so you did have some moments of consciousness about your own status then. I’m not completely sure what’s got me thinking about this, but I am kind of bothered by people’s status being elevated simply because they have lots of money. Even in this country, where we’re all supposed to be born equal, we still worship the rich and famous like they are the monarchy. It’s ironic that my country was founded on the premise that there are no monarchs, and people are all the same, but we don’t actually act that way.

“My thinking is that this social condition goes very far back in your human history, Thomas. Possibly back to when people lived very primitive lives, in very small social groups. It seems possible that the individual who collected the greatest amount of useful things, or was able to get the most food, would have been revered amongst their peers. It could be that what your society currently does is related to something that far back in your history. It just evolved to become about less practical items, instead of the most food it was the most gold, or the largest property. Of course, your history is replete with stories of megalomaniacs and tyrants who demanded respect and admiration from the peoples they ruled. By the time western monarchies came about, that admiration was almost a given for them.”

I can see that being the case back in times where having more of anything was probably a good thing, but now, in modern times? It just seems like people would have eventually dropped the notion that other people are somehow better because of wealth or fame. I just wish more people would see that those who really deserve our respect are often the ones we overlook. It shouldn’t matter if you’re rich or not.

“If you are speaking of individuals, and not groups, then there indeed might be much to be admired there, both in the rich, the poor, and everything in between. It is when one has preconceived notions about a person, or group, based on a status, or classification. Your complaint is about the wealthy and famous being revered for nothing more than that status in itself, but does the reverse not occur as well? The poor and the underprivileged are also victims of generalizations, most often very negative ones. Those generalizations are applied to them with just as little factual reasoning as the adoration of the rich.”

Do we do this simply because it’s too hard to look at individuals on a case by case basis? Is it just social laziness that makes us generalize?

“Speaking of people by generalized grouping is, more often than not, a social convention used to put across an idea that the speaker wants you to share. Whether it is ‘the rich are fabulous’ or ‘the poor are lazy’ they are both sweeping generalizations that would immediately fall apart upon individual inspection. It is my belief that as soon as one hears a speaker using generalizations such as those, one should be instantly cautious about what ideas are being put forth.”

But, aren’t some generalizations essentially true? Like the old saying about stereotypes; that they became what they are for some reason.

“We can easily concoct generalizations about many things that would be essentially true Thomas. ‘Human beings need air, food and water to live’ would be essentially correct, yet of what value is it? That in itself is a good question to bear in mind when you hear generalizations being spoken like they are facts. What value is it bringing to the conversation? I believe it safe to say that it most likely brings value to the speaker’s argument, but as a false support system.”

I think you’re probably right about that Omen, I don’t think that a genuinely intelligent speaker would use many generalizations. I think they’d use specifics and actual data to support the point they want to make. But, back to what I was originally asking about, and keeping in mind you can’t reveal the future to me; will we ever get past worshipping the rich and famous?

Thomas, all of the cultures in your world are evolving, each in myriad different ways. Your own culture, or more specifically the economic system of that culture, is based in capitalism. That in itself is a wealth-centric economic system that disproportionately benefits a small number of people at the highest income and wealth level. That is not to say that others do not benefit as well, just not as much as those who own the means of production and sales. In other cultures in your world they have varying economic systems that are either close to what you have, or not terribly different. The few countries that do have greatly differing systems have traditionally been the enemies of your country.”

Yeah, why is that anyway? Why have the socialists and communists always been the enemy of capitalist nations?

“An excellent question Thomas, I do hope you will research an answer for it. I do believe that a vast majority of the citizens of capitalist nations have not done so. (Yes, I realize that was a generalization, but it is one I am willing to stand behind.) I do think that if you look into the answer for your question you will be a bit surprised at the possible answers to it.”

Conversations with Omen XVII

I don’t remember as much about the afterlife as you think I do, mostly it’s just some feelings and sounds, I guess. What do people look like there? Will I see my parents just like they were the last time I saw them here, or some younger idealized version of them?

“Thomas, perhaps I truly have been thinking that you remember more than you actually do, I apologize for that. Although I do want to assure you that remembering feelings and sounds from the afterlife is extraordinary in itself. It also comprises a great deal of what the afterlife is to us, I am afraid it is somewhat less visual than you are imagining. You are applying uniquely human qualities to the souls of the afterlife, and that simply isn’t accurate. We are souls here, pure energy created by the Pure Love, and we can be whatever we choose to be here.”

Oh, that’s kind of cool though.

“I hope it will not disappoint you too much to know that most souls do not choose to manifest as anything more than their natural state – which to you would resemble a small sphere of light. Yet, as I said, we can choose to manifest ourselves in almost any manner we choose to. This form that I am appearing in now is by my own choice, and I did so to make you the most comfortable in my presence.”

I guess I thought that this is how you always look, whether you’re here or there. You kind of look like a Roman senator from the Julius Caesar days.

“You are essentially correct about that Thomas. I was indeed a senator of Rome, but not during the reign of Julius Caesar – many years before he was born. I chose this image because I thought it the most relatable one for you to accept. I also lived a very satisfying earthbound life in this form, and it was my last life lived here as well. I do hope you do not feel deceived by this information.”

No, not at all, it’s pretty fascinating actually. Wow, you were a senator, that’s pretty cool in my book, I bet you did some great things. Man, that just triggered a bunch of new questions in my mind, but I don’t want to get too far away from the first topic just yet. So, if you chose this form to appear to me in, you’re kind of saying that you could have chosen almost anything else?

“Essentially, yes. Although I would always choose a form that would be acceptable to you, and not something so foreign that you would be frightened by me. I certainly would not choose to manifest as a life form you have never seen before, that wouldn’t make sense. Just as if I were to need to manifest to a different being of another world, I would choose to appear as one of their familiars.”

So, when on Mars, do as the Martians do, huh?

“That is an amusing corollary Thomas, but you are basically correct in your thinking. But, in the afterlife you and I might just choose to be our natural soul-selves. We would have no need to appear as anything else. The same would be true if you were in contact with the souls that were your parents in your life here, you would still recognize them easily because you have known them for so long. Their energy and their love is very familiar to you, as yours is to them too.”

That makes sense, I guess. But, it also sounds like you’re saying that we don’t really ‘see’ each other there. It seems like you’re describing the souls as feeling each other more than seeing.

“That is the uniquely human quality I mentioned earlier. You are imagining eyes where there are none, yet that does not strictly mean we do not see. This is difficult, but let me use an example if I may. In your mind you can picture almost anything that you have ever seen, and also many things that you have not. Yet, you are not actually seeing those images with your eyes are you? Humans use the term ‘mind’s eye’ sometimes to describe seeing images in their imaginations; that is somewhat similar to how it works here. I hope that helps you understand this a bit more.”

Yeah, actually that helps a lot. I guess because I am a human right now I tend to think of everything in those terms. All I know is that I really was picturing that I would visually see my loved ones when I got to the afterlife. There was a lot about that particular idea that didn’t really make sense though, so your explanation actually cleared up the questions. I don’t ‘see’ my mom as she was here, I’ll feel her energy and familiar presence when we meet again.

“Yes, very good Thomas, I am beginning to think that you remember a bit more about the afterlife than you led me to believe.”

Just to clarify something; once I’m there, my mother isn’t really my mother, is she? I mean, it’s a soul I know, or will remember that I know once I’m there. But, it’s not like I’m going to feel just like I felt about her here, back when she was alive, right?

“You are correct in your thinking Thomas, but keep something in mind – something you have not thought of yet; the feelings you will experience in the reunion with that soul will likely outstrip by far the mother image you remember. Reuniting with a soul that you have known for such a very long time is a fantastic experience, lifetimes replay between you in mere moments. All of the contacts and various relationships you have had come back in an instant, and the associated emotions are deep and satisfying.”

You’re saying that we instantly recall all of the lives that we’ve had together, no matter what our relationship was? That’s pretty interesting actually, especially if we’ve been a lot of different things to each other. I mean, I’m guess that we could have been anything and everything with all of the souls we’ve been with, right? Mother – son, husband – wife, cousins, or anything and everything else.

“Yes Thomas, that too is correct. Soul lives are lived at different times and not always in a linear timeline. You could have been the mother to that same soul in your last lives here, or even passing acquaintances that only briefly knew each other. The amazing part is being able to see all of those lives and how they intersected each time. It is quite amazing.”

Conversations with Omen XVI

“You look a bit shaken Thomas, is everything alright?”

It was just a tough day at my work, and then on the way home some jerk was harassing me on the freeway. I guess he thought everyone was going too slow, but it wasn’t like I could do anything about it. He was behind me, and then as soon as there was a small space, he accelerated past my car and gave me the finger. I still don’t know what the hell he thought I did.

“His rude gesture offended and irritated you?”

Well sure, he was looking like a crazy man as he passed and flipped me off. It was only directed at me, there wasn’t anyone else he was looking at. I almost yelled something back at him, but I decided that in today’s world it was too risky. I mean, what if he turned out to really be crazy? He could have turned violent on me if I made him any madder than he already was.

“Your frustration, in the face of powerlessness is obvious, but I do not think you have given yourself the time to see it differently. Allowing yourself time to deconstruct the event can be very helpful in reducing your frustration, thereby lowering stress and remaining healthier both physically and mentally.”

I think I have it in pretty good perspective Omen; I was minding my own business driving in bad traffic, and a total ass-hat went crazy on me. Boom, done.

“I am not sure if that is more of your humor Thomas, or if you truly are thinking that way. Either way, allow me to explain what I meant; a method of deconstructing almost any poor interaction and then being able to see it in a new light, so to speak. Your encounter with that other driver was very upsetting to you, it raised your physical reactions in much the same way a physically dangerous encounter would. Your emotions suddenly rage, your pulse rises, and you become angry and frustrated in just seconds. For some people in similar situations, they can be moved to actual physical violence and retaliation. Now, picture in your mind a different set of reactions that are not based in ego, but are thoughtful and present. The angry driver does just what you said he did, but in this new way of thinking you step back from instant reaction and acknowledge that fact that he is already a very angry man.”

“Furthermore, by the simple acknowledgement that he is an angry person, you can leave that with him – it is his anger, not yours. As you said, you believe you did nothing to offend him except be the unfortunate one in the car directly in front of his. So, you are not culpable for any transgressions against that man, you have nothing to feel apologetic for. You are literally blame-free in this situation, yet that man is still angry enough to make a rude gesture at you. Now perhaps you can see that all of the negativity was brought by that man, and did not exist in your world until he behaved as he did. Yet, that brief moment of his rude behavior was able to trigger an equally angry inner reaction in you.”

Yeah, okay, I can see that.

“Deconstruction involves looking at why that triggered all of the emotions that you suddenly felt, and what those emotions are based upon. In this case, as I said earlier, you most likely felt powerless to really do anything about his behavior, or even inform him that he offended you. That leads to frustration, the emotion most related to not being able to accomplish something we very much want to do. Yet, let us look a bit deeper if we can, go down a level to see what causes you to feel like you want to do something about the situation. That most often springs from the ego Thomas.”

The ego, or my ego I guess… how does that fit in to this?

“The human ego is a complex mental component that I will admit I do not fully understand, but nevertheless I do know that it is able to be tamed. It is the ego that makes you feel that you need to react in situations such as that one. Your ego tells you that you have been trespassed against, that you have been insulted, and that you are required to react to it. It is your ego that tells you that the specific hand gesture he made to you was a very insulting one that was intended to hurt you; and it is the ego that makes you feel hurt.”

Well, it was insulting wasn’t it? It’s not like there’s a bunch of other interpretations for the middle finger gesture. As far as I know there isn’t any society on earth that doesn’t know what it generally means. He wasn’t saying ‘hello’ to me, he wasn’t saying that I’m number one in his book.

“I hope you are not being intentionally obtuse Thomas, I do believe that you know what I am trying to get at here. You have the choice to quiet your ego, or better yet, to hear it and choose to set that message aside for one that is more reasoned. You can choose to see the situation as one where a very angry man passed you in an aggressive manner and made a rude gesture; and nothing more. He was the angry one, he was the frustrated one, he was the one that was almost out of control – not you. If I were walking about your town trying to sell poison would you be inclined to buy some from me? I think not, nor would anyone else for that matter. If you picture that man in a similar light, I think you can begin to understand what I am saying.”

Okay, you’re saying that he’s the one selling poison, in this case a metaphor for his anger, and that I bought some. Am I close?

“Yes, very good Thomas, that is almost exactly right. That man is like a storm that you can choose to avoid, and not get caught in. When you see that all of the anger and aggression belongs with him, you can choose to not accept any of it. You can leave those emotions with him, and then congratulate yourself on remaining in your own space and retaining your own calm mental state.”

That sounds a lot easier said than done Omen, and I’m not sure I’m quite that evolved yet. But, I do see your point now; if I really were able to do that then I can picture the whole thing ending up differently. I probably wouldn’t be mad or frustrated at all; I’d see it as his BS that has nothing to do with me. I mean, that sounds great but how do I train my brain to slow my ego’s almost instant-response to situations like that?

“Ah, I do not recall saying that this is an easy process Thomas. In fact it is quite difficult at first to even acknowledge that you are in a situation that calls for this new way of thinking. You may want to begin with just the acknowledgement piece of it. Noticing the rise in emotions and the suddenly changing physical responses in your body are both good markers to pay attention to. Think of those like alarms going off that require you to do something in order to quiet them. If you can immediately become aware of those responses you can then begin to slow yourself down, and you might find that you have time to choose a different response.”

In other words, I can train myself to notice the emotions kicking up, and then maybe breathe slowly to calm myself and choose not to react. I can reject what my ego is telling me to do and then choose to do what my higher-self knows is a better response.

“Yes, exactly right Thomas. I believe you will find that there is a hidden reward in this new thinking as well. You will come to realize that you are calmer, and that you are not a slave to your ego anymore. You will feel as if a weight has been lifted off of your shoulders when you no longer take on someone else’s current emotional situation.”

So, what’s the point of having an ego then? I mean it sure seems like it gets us in trouble by causing us to make rash decisions. Why do we have an ego at all?

“That is a very difficult question Thomas, and I can only speculate. The ego is an important part of the human psychological makeup, especially when it is in-check, so to speak. It becomes less of a benefit when one allows it to control them. Ego can serve beneficial purposes in a person’s life Thomas; it helps provide your sense of self-worth, along with the soul. When ego and soul work in harmony there is a balance within you. You find that your decision making is based less on emotional response and more on facts and reality.”

How does the soul balance out the ego?

“The ego will tell you that you are a very important person, the soul will tell you that you are but one of a billion souls living on the planet. That is a balance because they are both right; you are important, but so is everyone else. You are one of billions, yet you are unique and deserving of respect. That is the balance, self-worth that is in healthy perspective.”