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What is the role of the Physical, as opposed to Spiritual?

Posted on 28 March 2017, 9:32

In those conversations in the 1970’s with the spirit of Stephen the Martyr, he answered that question with the words that follow:

In answer to the question above about the role of the physical, Stephen said:

Stephen: It was created in the image of the Father as an extension to the Source.

How can one explain and give a concrete example of love?

What is an extension of love but love?

What is an extension to the air that you breathe but air?

We speak of “the Father”, for in this way we can conceive in our minds a tangible image of what is intangible.

The essence of what is a father, is in the image of the Source that created it.

What is a father, but a source of love, protection, a teacher, comforter
and a strength?

This is a father, therefore. We were made in this image.

To create thus from base material requires this material to be refined, to insert and influence emotions with other emotions.

For, as we know, we do not make a father from a child. When it is born it comes away from the mother, it grows, learns, experiences until it in its turn re-creates and then, and only then, can it become a father. But the mere act of re-creation itself does not give it the emotion, only the ability to become a father.

The activities and purpose of a true father are an extension of our Father. This is the purpose. Would not he who loves extend the power of that love? Would not he who provides extend the power of his providence?

[Comment: If readers are unhappy with the term “Father”, they might think “Parent” or “Mother”. Stephen refers to Genesis 1:27 “So God created mankind in his own image.” But Stephen consistently sees the “Father” as All That Is, an unbroken wholeness, in which we participate, which seems to be the understanding of St John’s Gospel, and of Ephesians 4:6 : “One God and Father of all, above all, through all and in all”.  This view is consistent with the Quantum Mechanics understanding of Quantum Entanglement. All is entangled with All Else. All causes all else. This produces a kind of determinism. It is interesting that most religions, most Christian denominations proclaim Predestination as their teaching. We need to remember this, when trying to grasp what Stephen is saying.]
10. Stephen as an extension.

Stephen: Let us consider Stephen: perhaps his continuous self [the self underlying all incarnations] that we spoke of has had sufficient refining for it not to be too separated from the cell of the Source and for that reason Stephen would feel less of a “thing”.

Were Stephen to actually be the soul then Stephen would also be the Father and this is not so.

He is rather an extension, which can be used.

This knowledge is brought to your consciousness, not as a gift but as a recall.
I have said on many occasions that nothing I speak about is unknown to you.

Fear not your questions for what you ask is what you know.

I assist as your memory, only in so much as that I help the decision as to when you might recall.

I even assist when I tell that to progress further in conversation sometimes confuses further.

Be at peace with yourselves, for you know in your emotions what you should be and how you should be.

Never let the mind persuade against the emotions in these things.

I will depart now. God bless you all.

11. The Father has laid down a course that you will follow. And I say this to you: Think more of the course that All are to follow. For the plan is greater than you and I.

You have said even this night that you act and that you act in faith. If you have faith you know that if you did wrong you would be protected from your folly.

For someone must act before I speak to you. Thomas [the channel]
must act. He must do something. Then I can help.

In coming to speak with me you also acted. Should your vehicle not have got you here then you would have known that it was not within the plan that you speak with Stephen. Should Stephen not act, and Thomas not act, then we would know also that this is within the plan.

The Father has laid down a course that you will follow. And I say this to you: Think more of the course that All are to follow. For the plan is greater than you and I. Think in terms of All, as well as all things. The earth which revolves around the sun and then the sun which revolves around another point. The course cannot vary, even if the earth or the sun chose, or even if we wished that it might follow a different course.

We must remember that the part of the path that we will follow is part of the path the earth travels, inevitably. We know this and we know that it is futile for us to try to follow a path other than that taken by the earth.

And in our minds we wish often to do what might take us from the inevitable path that we ourselves follow. The cells in our bodies, the particles in our blood, follow that course which is planned, neither knowing whence it comes, or where it is going. The earth still revolves, just as we must act.

The acting is the understanding of where we are, to appreciate the moment. The disappointments always come from the actions we feel that we might wish to take. All of these things are not possible and it is just as impossible for this earth to change place with another planet. In the course of our destinies we tend with the use of our physical minds to create a path which differs from what we are to follow and will follow.

It would be easier to step off this earth than to change one moment
of what our lives will be.

Michael: In which case, it seems futile to worry what we should do next or even to discuss it, because.. I see what you are saying is true because I have had so much experience of things working together that I in my material mind could not possibly plan. But for this reason it would seem futile to influence each other, or even to act.

Stephen: You will act, for this is part of the path also. Your action is part of the course. It is the mind that conceives and tries to create an action which is not of the Father.

Michael: When you look at members of the group or myself, do you feel that in any way we are off -course?

Stephen: You are where you should be at this time and one year from now you will be where you should be. Four years ago, in the past, you were where you wished to be. And you were content. You are in åthe same place, but not so contented. Has the place changed?...

Michael: Can you tell me - may I keep you? – whether this inevitability comes from the role that the cell plays? Does the cell decide or does the Whole decide?

Stephen: The Creator of all, and the Whole and the movement, and the plan for all things, are there and cannot be altered. There is no one thing that decides. Except that each action has its reaction. I must leave.
God bless you.

P.S. If readers want to find out the background to the Stephen experience, they should go to the current issue of The Ground of Faith

Readers might like to compare Stephen’s words with this recent meditation from Franciscan Richard Rohr.

Michael Cocks edits the journal, The Ground of Faith.
Afterlife Teaching From Stephen the Martyr by Michael Cocks is published by White Crow Books and available from Amazon and other bookstores.

Michael on Skeptico.

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We are like children gazing at our image in a pool

Posted on 14 March 2017, 14:32

Further to my previous blog on Afterlife Teaching From Stephen the Martyr.

We can often find the teaching of Stephen the Martyr quite difficult. It’s because the primary fact for him is that we are all eternally participants in an indivisible whole. His teaching is close to the mysticism of St John’s gospel , where Jesus compares us to branches on a vine, and in ch. 17:15 prays, “that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us.” This is not how we usually think. But experiences with synchronicity can push us in this direction.

7. The necessity for physical lives. 

Olive: Some religions teach that having physical lives is necessary until we become perfected men and it is all a matter of evolution: not because of the Fall, caused by eating of the forbidden fruit. Can you help me in my confusion over this?

Stephen: We do have to become Man [=humanity] Now if the Father [=parent] created Man in his own image, then the Father created Man that he might be His, and He might belong to Man. For what is the Father but All?

Therefore we might say that each of us becomes Man. But the conclusions that are drawn are that the cell,[soul] part of the Father, must become Man to become perfect.

This contradicts what is the truth: or how can what is perfect require a created vessel of its own creation in order to become itself which is perfect?

The confusion in many minds, including our own, is derived from thinking that we need to make a journey, and thinking that we should be progressing from one stage to another until we reach the heights of perfection.

We speak often of two different things; we confuse what is created with what creates.

You yourself have often created apparel that you wish to wear for a particular effect or experience.

But does that apparel become you?

Are you less of yourself without the apparel?

Or more of you because of it?

So when we speak of Man let us not confuse what is eternal and everlasting with what comes from the dust and will return to the dust from which it came.

In the beginning of our meetings we spoke then of the Source of all things and the cell of that Source that voluntarily came away

(for this is the best concept that I can give you.)

It came away so that each cell gathers in experience by choice of the Love that is the Source.

For love is not stagnant but a moving thing and love becomes greater by growth.

As the cells began to experience they experienced not only love, but also what is the opposite of that love.

Now the opposite of to love is not a thing that a teacher might point out to a pupil, but something to compare love with.

For Love is, and the opposite of Love is not.

Therefore the cell experiences the lack of that love so that the cell through choice would make growth in love, to cancel out what is lack, or the non-love.

As a vessel for that experience all that we can perceive has been created and is even yet being created.

The aim and object is not the instrument of loving, nor is it the vessel that receives the loving.

The aim and object is the actual experience of Love.

8. “Gazing at our image in the pool”.

“Think of yourselves as you gaze upon your image in the pool which, for all intents and purposes, be your mirror´ [Here, Stephen is addressing our eternal selves looking at themselves in the mirror of this world:]

Stephen: Just one more step with your thoughts, and you might be able to see yourselves.

Think of yourselves as you gaze upon your image in the pool which, for all intents and purposes, be your mirror. How often, as a child, have we looked into this pool and our consciousness has gone into that one which we see. This then is the state that our conscious mind is in, in the one of the image. What we see and perceive are reflections, or so be it, symbols of what truly is, but because of the unreality of that image it can either be good or not-good as we ourselves choose to see.

We have listened to the words that we must step outside of ourselves and look inwards. This would be confusing if it were not for the image that we are conscious of ourselves as. Imagine now, each one of you,  your reflection in the pool. Then imagine that you are that reflection.

Now I say to you, step outside of your consciousness, and look within yourself that you might see the image.

What then, in the consciousness of the image, would need to happen?

The image in its consciousness, that which has held and does often hold us, would need to separate and die …to live. There are many ways in which this might happen.

The image that can be perceived by other images may be destroyed, as truly was the body of Jesus in the manner as described (in the Gospels).

The importance was not of the dying but to show the way, the gate to come out of the image and back into the true consciousness, where we perceive only those things that are reflected and distorted by the turbulence created by our thrashing inside the pool so that even the reflections (should we be able to perceive them) from ourselves rather than from our image, would also be distorted.

Think of the reason now that we would first put our consciousness into the image as we gaze at the pool; for truly, now we have come out … we look back into the pool. We take our consciousness and immerse it in the image for we reason as children do: “I wish to experience…for by looking at myself from without I can understand myself better.” We do this many times, with many images that we might learn of ourselves.

Often as the image we perceive all else that is mirrored around us: we the (mirrored) cell that we speak of this night, we see the pattern that is formed, the movement of the parts and of the Centre. We understand that it can separate, divide, come together and be created. We learn much of ourselves and of all things.

We forget often the pattern that we may perceive does have this margin of error, physically, visibly, for it is only an image and cannot be defined with the same clarity as the cell itself is, in truth.

*  *  *  *  *  *

To try and understand Stephen’s words, we need to need to meditate and see things from his point of view, that of the eternal spiritual whole (sub specie aeternitatis). It is difficult for us to do this, but this is the thrust of all his teachings.
                                           
We may be familiar with the hymn beginning, “God is working his purpose out as year succeeds to year,“  or the famous words of Julian of Norwich, “all things are well, all manner of things are well”, or Leibnitz, saying that “this is the best of all possible worlds”.  I begin my book, Into the Wider Dream , by describing how all world religions talk of the predestination of things to come.                                                                                     

So we have a paradox; on the one hand affirming all the above and on the other, the need to follow Jesus in loving our neighbour, whoever that may be, being humble, generous, non-judgmental, not being attached to material things.

It seems a paradox, but the more we love our neighbour, the less self-centred we are, the less judging, the more humble we become, the more we will see things from Stephen’s point of view, i.e the more we will love God.

Do look at my Stephen page here.

Michael Cocks edits the journal, The Ground of Faith.
Afterlife Teaching From Stephen the Martyr by Michael Cocks is published by White Crow Books and available from Amazon and other bookstores.

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