Abdul Hadi Badi-al-Zamar, the Sufi, arrived at the palace and was ushered in to see the princess.
"Come sit with me a while," she suggested, "and we will talk of the mysteries of life." They had known each other since she was a little girl, and Abdul Hadi admired her mind and delighted, to a degree that was proper, in her beauty. She displayed great promise as a mathematician.
"I have a problem for you," she said.
She clapped her hands together and her slave girl came in. "Bring the casket," she ordered, which the shapely young black woman did.
The princess sat up on her divan, opened the casket and poured its contents into a bowl, which pinged to the sound of falling pearls.
The slave girl, who must have known what was required, brought a pair of scales.
"The problem is this," she said to the old man, "one of these pearls is false. They all look identical, but one is fractionally lighter than the rest, and is not so valuable. Using just the scales and the pearls, what is the least number of weighings necessary to find the false pearl every time?
The Sufi rubbed his beard, and let the pearls trickle through his fingers, one by one, back into the bowl.
"With luck, one weighing would do it, but to be sure every time, then ..."
So, using just the scales and the pearls, no weights, how many times must the pearls be weighed to get the false pearl every time?
Abdul Hadi Badi-al-Zamar, a Sufi and mathematician, heard a ruckus ahead. Men were shouting at each other. “What ails thee?” he asked of one of the men, who was rending his clothing.
“Our father has just died,” said the man, “and left us with an insoluble problem.”
“What is the problem,” asked the Sufi, for he liked problems. They kept his mind nimble.
“Our father’s dying wish was as follows,” said the man, tears streaming down his face. “We were to divide our father’s horses as follows. I am the youngest, and I am to be given a ninth of the horses. My brother, Karim, is in the middle, and he is due one third of the horses. Our oldest brother, Malik is to receive one half.”
“How many horses do you have?" said the old Sufi, getting down of his own fiery steed.
Thirty-five,” said Nadir, the youngest of the brothers.
Malik, the oldest walked over and demanded, “Can you help us? If not, be on your way, and leave us to our misery, for we can see no solution, without butchering one or more of the beautiful stallions.”
“I think I can help you,” said the Sufi, “but first I must do something.”
He handed over the bridle of his horse to horse to Malik, who held it, frowning.
“Now let me see,” said the old man, while the three wives and numerous children gathered around. He picked up a stick and sketched some figures in the sand.
[If you wish to think about his solution, now is the time to do so … if not, then click on the link below to see Abdul Hadi Badi-al-Zamar’s elegant solution.]
Some years ago when the current writer worked as a consultant, We showed the image below to the directors of a construction company. So powerful was the illusion - that when it was shown on a projector (from a computer) they said we must have been cheating.
In the end I had to produce a version on paper for them to actually not believe what their eyes saw.
It is important to look twice at things.
Sometimes seeing is deceiving.
Are the squares A and B the same colour and tone EXACTLY? (This is not a trick question.)
Here is something remarkable ...
It is said that this secret story has a Sufi origin. It was first found Eastern Europe. Simple questions, taken in order, that reveal some remarkable things about yourself.
Try it and see. Click 'read more' below the picture
You may need a pen and paper handy. This will enable you to jot down notes on what you find. Do this when you have completed the five steps.
You will be given a story one line at a time. Take some moments to visualise what you actually see. Make sure you get it clear BEFORE doing the next part of the story.
The moment you have completed the FIVE STEPS then review them. Make sure they are clear. Make a few notes if necessary.
The Goose Girl
Key slides from a talk are given below. Play them in order both to understand the story and to see what it means.
Each slide has a caption. Fairy Tales release their wisdom bit by bit. they have many layers of meaning. What is suggested below is one interpretation ... and of course it is not the only truth.
That said, The Goose Girl presents in vivid imagery the journey of the Soul from innocence, through forgetfulness, and back to realisation and finally transformation. It is one of the most profound wisdom tales in the Grimm collection.
What ascends and how?
Man (men and women) incarnates (is born) in a body on earth. Once he passes beyond an entirely natural life, at one with the animal kingdom, a deep yearning may arise, to pass beyond the boundaries of earthly life, and return from whence he came. This happens, even if the memory of that Edenic place is vague. When such an awakening occurs, a flame is ignited within a woman or a man, that can never be extinguished. The things of this world don't fully satisfy any more. The path of return is the only path that provides real peace.
Tales of heaven, sacred gardens, angelic realms, the courts of Jove, the Grail, each speak of a state of being far removed from time and space; beyond a world of scarcity, pain and death. It is natural that the chance to 'ascend' from down here to up there, appeals to many who hear of that possibility, whether within a religious context or without. Mighty Norse warriors would happily die on the field of battle to obtain Valhalla, even as a Buddhist priest might set himself alight to free his country and achieve Nirvana.
The questions arise: what ascends and how does the ascent take place?
What is Ascension?
What does ascension mean? Since before the millennium the new spirituality has spoken of a coming time, often relating to the Mayan Calendar, when humanity or part of humanity would ascend.
If indeed there is ascension, and if it has been foreseen over hundreds if not thousands of years, then the ancient wisdom will also have a part to play in explaining what will or may happen, as well as the emerging understanding as we move further into 2012.
The Christian story, which contains profound echoes of other earlier traditions, provides clues as does the understanding of the Ancient Egyptians, the Greeks and their academies and mystery schools.
Individually we are a plurality as well as a unity. This is true of us as Souls, that have many levels and spheres, as well as the mind ... as we have seen already. It is also true of our personality. This is far from being one 'thing'.
It is a common teaching in many esoteric systems that we have three fundamental powers, each has its own path. These powers are thinking (mind), feeling (heart) and willing (will). The last of these (will) is the least studied by psychologists.
A simple experiment.
If someone takes a piece of paper and writes the answer to the question "What do I want?" giving a fresh answer each time, a long list results, with answers ranging from "an ice cream", "a large house of my own", "a fulfilling marriage", "to see India", "to see my daughter settled", and so on. We can generate many answers if we do not censor... and it is an interesting experiment to do. More difficult is to narrow the long list to ten and then five prime wishes. That involves choosing.
When I was training in Psychosynthesis, we did this, and then five people sat around us, reading the wishes out. We sat in the middle, eyes closed, listening.
The experience was excruciating... uncomfortable. This is because the wishes are often mutually incompatible as they stand. And hearing them read is like being within one's own mind when it's in a spin.
Each of these wishes, the five or the ten or more, spring from a different sub-personality. If you play with this you can find quite distinct 'beings' inside that have their own way of thinking, have characteristic feelings and different motivations.
Part of emotional maturity I believe, is recognising this reality at least in outline. Then we know with some impulses that arise they are just a sub-personality ... not central to who we are. A 'part of us' not our core. We gradually recognise these parts. When we do, we get choice. We can decide to act in accord with a fragment of who we are, or we can choose not to.
Powerful sub-personalities that have dominated parts of our lives often have their root in childhood and interactions with our parents and siblings. We may find that they exert far too much sway in our life. Gradually we can recognise this, and so choose otherwise. Of course if the pattern is deep and if it relates to what felt at the age of - say - six, to be a life and death matter, then detaching from it can prove difficult.
Managing who we are, elegantly, is a life skill that never really is finished with, as, at each stage of our life we are faced with different challenges.
Finding how to respond to these in real time is not easy for anyone. Placing our consciousness at Soul level ... aligning with our higher self ... certainly helps. Indeed it really only is from that level we act as a unity rather than a part.
Intuition literally means 'inner teaching'
This word is often misused, to be the same as 'instinct' or 'hunch'.
In Ideal Philosophy Intuition is situated above Reason, In the Platonic scheme it is far above what he calls Doxastic learning, which is no higher than opinion and guesswork. Intuitions are of wholenesses of truth; and they are never personal as such (ie limited in scope to only the person).
Inspiration is a less misused word, and literally means breathing in of breath or the spirit. Inspiration is from the Divine, and comes through the agency of the Muses (in the Hellenic Scheme of Sacred Philosophy). It cannot be commanded but can, with one who dedicates their work to the highest, be encouraged. It heightens all art in all spheres, raising it above the mundane.
Revelation is almost completely misunderstood in our era, and few would suggest in polite society that it happens. Yet, under normal circumstances all individuals receive revelations; the Still Small Voice is there for all of us. Again, it cannot be commanded, but it comes, for individuals and for groups. Apollonic revelation would be different to Dionysic, Athena's revelations would differ from those of Artemis. All are from the One Divine.
Revelations for eras and for the world are of course much more rare. They register in history. Krishna, Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed, all were such recipients. This is true even though much they received has been adulterated (altered and not in a good way).
It is worth wondering, if an individual received a revelation today, for the world, how would they promulgate (deliver it to people) it? How would its revelatory nature be recognised?
No true revelation ever contradicts the essential truth of a previous (Divine) revelation.
It is my conclusion that we receive insights and teachings from our Higher Self (Super-conscious) through Intuition. These essentially formless truths gather form as they enter our psychological space (the Intra-conscious) and we receive them as impressions, images, feelings, ideas.
The sub-conscious also impacts on our consciousness through feelings, impulses, images and ideas, but these are intensely personal. Or they are earth bound.
Two individuals can communicate directly through their Higher Selves, but may not realise that is happening, unless they listen inwardly, and without expectation. This - it seems to me - is communication in Soul Language.
As it is true to say "the mind touches what it thinks of" they can communicate in their current consciousness when apart. This skill can be developed.
If connected in some way, benignly, impersonally or malignly, they can communicate to the degree of their 'distance' from one another. This is easy for people in the same room. It is inevitable for family members, ex marriage partners, close friends, in proportion to the intensity of their relationship, past or present. This communication is via their sub-conscious, and we can certainly learn to 'pick it up' - via our inter-conscious. It affects us whether we consciously register it or not. The effects can be a blessing or a curse.
It is my belief that when two people have loved, and sealed that love with love-making that is at all levels of their being, then the connections are opened at all levels also: sub-conscious, conscious and super-conscious. This type of connection entirely transcends separation in space, and to some degree, separation in time. I think it is how two souls find one another again, in this universe of ours ... that is, after all, constructed of awareness.
Murray Morison is a novelist living in Crete
Posts can be reproduced in other blogs provided they are copied in full with a link back to this site.
When a teenage priestess, living 5,000 years ago in Ancient Egypt, connects with Rhory, an English schoolboy visiting the British Museum, she puts herself and him in grave danger.
Click here to learn more about M C Morison's time slip book
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One eyed monsters
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Fake news and the alt media
Ascension Part 2
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Mundi - a mind trap
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