This summer I have free written in my journal a lot to explore where I am and what might be next for me. I’m recording dreams again and spending more quiet time simply being aware of my body and environment. I’m whispering gratitudes continuously as I’m fully aware that though my own days are dwindling just by the mere fact that I’m 72, that there’s no reason I can’t say thank you for the days I have had and am having. (I am not being morbid, but realistic, I think.) I’m also working almost every night in my art journals—and creativity and hope seem to be simmering once again. I was kind of stuck for a while. All summer I’ve dug around in my patio garden connecting to the earth and have walked to the sea simply to stare at sunsets and people. A few weeks back I began sorting old photos and reconnecting with my ancestors and my family. Today I booked a flight to visit my sister in Las Vegas later this month and to go to my 54th class reunion in Laughlin, NV. I had really been dragging my feet. I have very much become a homebody.
When I consciously live life with intention, starting when I first wake up (which is much harder to do than say), synchronicities begin to happen. It’s like Holy Spirit (or whatever you call something greater than yourself) reveals itself through people, situations and circumstances. Have you noticed that yourself? I've been more present lately--and sometimes that is pretty darned painful, I might add.
In that synchronistic vein, I’ve recently become aware of two Ralph Whites. One I’ve actually met. So, here goes. In the Aug. 31 edition of the Los Angeles Times, there was an interesting article by Louis Sahagun called "A Quest for the Mysteries of spiritual experience." It was about a conference in upstate New York exploring the unexplained about the country's spiritual and cultural movements that started there. This first Ralph White, the editor of Lapis Magazine, led the tour. Booked as “An Esoteric Quest for Inner America” in Rip Van Winkle country, participants visited the Oneida Community, the site of the 19609 Woodstock festival, the Six Nations Iroquois Conferdation, the Hudson River School painters, the now mostly defunct Shaker communities, and several other locations. One doesn't necessarily have to go the great ruins around the world to find spiritual beginnings and continuity. It's right in our own back yards.
Ralph White I is apparently is an expert on esoteric philosophy and theology and for the past six years I haven't been spending time at my old esoteric haunts like the Krotona School of Theosophy, the Krishnamurti Foundation of America, both in Ojai, or the Philosophical Research Society in Los Angeles for a long time. I haven’t even been to the Jung Institute in Los Angeles, which isn't so much esoteric, but is a psychology based in spirituality. I haven't been reading Gnosis or Parabola on a regular basis.
I had never even heard of the esoteric scholar and Lapis editor Ralph White but even before awareness of Ralph White I, I met another Ralph White, a fusion artist. Ralph White belongs to my art group and has a studio set up in a garage next door to my house where he paints on the weekend. I recently visited him while he was working and though I am not ordinarily attracted to most abstract art, I was extremely pulled toward his. It is very spiritual.
I love the synchronicity of “discovering” both Ralph White’s within a few weeks span and if you are interested in all things spiritual, I highly recommend visiting both these men’s websites. Both are inspiring and surely piqued my interest—and maybe more.
I'll admit it. The time has come again to enrich my Christianity by staying equally in tune with all the spiritual traditions of the world. Something has been missing lately--and I know that by nature I like to seek out other ways of looking at the world.