Climbing The Holy Mountain

When I try to see the ways in which I’ve transformed over the past eighteen years as a student at The University of Ascension Science and The Physics of Rebellion on the campus at Avalon Gardens & EcoVillage, I find it hard to pin them down because change is often slow. Very occasionally I catch the fast train of progress, but other times I’m stuck in a railway station pacing up and down and wondering why the train is late. It’s late because of me, of course, and the many layers of consciousness that I have to work through in order to experience genuine transformational change. The word, “transformation” sounds so impressive, but there’s a large gap between knowing a thing and doing it and it takes a lot of repeated hard work to translate it into reality.

Transformation is not like I thought it would be.
It’s not like a singular stained-glass window
Telling the story of a pilgrim’s progress;
It’s not like a great public drama
Revealing moments of unusual achievement;
It’s not like a soulful piece of music
Played for inspiration before going to bed.

Instead it’s like a path through a dry and pebbly landscape
Where the traveler very slowly climbs and dips,
Then climbs a little further than before.
It’s like a cairn on a high ridge
Where each small stone and rock
Signifies enormous effort of a day’s labor.

And such small, repeated beginnings of virtue
Create an opening for greater truth.
So slowly, very slowly, one climbs the holy mountain.

Tuning Into Divine Pattern

Yes, climbing that holy mountain is the challenge set by the gods. But before I came to The University of Ascension Science and The Physics of Rebellion, I thought I was a nice person who didn’t need a lot of transformation! Now I see the extreme naivety and pride in this thought. The fact is that my spiritual horizons were quite a bit more restricted at that time. Since then, through opening up to the many teachings we’ve received, I’ve developed a more profound awareness of the divine pattern that manifests in so many ways in the cosmos at all levels of creation. Even the word cosmos means “order” in Greek, and that order also reveals itself in the qualities of goodness, truth, and beauty. I’ve come to understand that our true selves have been created in potential in divine pattern, and now we must evolve by our own devoted efforts to actualize. This perception has grown from a more intellectual one to a heart-felt, soul-felt one that stirs me from contemplation into action. As a result I’m now incorporating more order in my personal environment, more clarity in my thinking, and more loving goodness in my actions. As I transform in this way, little by little I become more whole.

Getting Practical and Including Others

When I became a student at this center for higher spiritual study, I was seeking personal spiritual enlightenment, and I presumed that if I were successful in reaching those dizzy heights I would then be in a much better space to help others. This is no doubt true, but meanwhile it was going to take a lot of time! I had set my sights on the top of the mountain and not done the proper route-finding because my “mystic” mentality did not encompass others enough along the way and was not sufficiently grounded in the nitty gritty of daily living.

When the wind is right,
I soar into that other world of sky and vision—
Whoosh! Free from body boundaries
And tentacles of time,
I’m sailing far above the sticky mazes on the ground.
Space stretches, time slows down,
I hear the call of the Beyond
And vastness draws me in.

 But then, from many mental miles away
I hear the marching song from far below:
“Left right, do it right, end of flight!”
Help, I’ve been gone too long!
Reluctantly I flutter down,
Leaving the space of mystics
To plunge into logistics.
“Patience, little one,” the gods are saying,
“The ladder of ascension
Must begin upon the ground.”

I’ve discovered that it’s in the ups and downs of an ordinary day that I have to face my demons. Getting to a beautiful place in meditation is a very desirable start to the day, but if I can’t maintain the balance when I have to face temporary setbacks, then I have to develop more self-mastery and learn how not to let irritation, impatience, and anxiety get the upper hand when I’m under pressure of one sort or another. I’ve been aided in my battle with these three destroyers of inner peace by having to deal with a tendency to high blood pressure. So I’ve had to come out of survival mode and practice the antidote—trying to stay more calm, maintaining a heart connection with others, and overcoming my tendency to want to prove myself right. As I develop more trust in letting God be the author of my moments, a selfish part of me slowly diminishes


Before I came here at the age of sixty, I had never really blended well with large groups of people. I had close individual friends but I was selective, and mingling closely with a large number of people from all walks and stations of life was usually uncomfortable for me. Having experienced an isolated childhood, I had never really got the hang of it. In fact, when I was a young woman I could become quite nervous and tongue-tied in a large group. I see this now as a form of egotism because I had become too self-absorbed with how I came across. As my self-absorption has lessened I’ve become more relaxed, real, and spontaneous. This is a real victory and my reward is in an ever-increasing sense of connection with a broad spectrum of others.

This interconnecting is also happening at a micro-particle level. The nature of particle reality—its invisible influence—has increasingly become clearer to me through what I’ve learned in The Cosmic Family volumes by Van / Gabriel of Urantia / TaliasVan, the co-founder of The University of Ascension Science and The Physics of Rebellion. These volumes teach the science of spirituality, and through them I’ve become particularly conscious of the reality and power of thought and how it affects our material world in both direct and indirect ways. This has given me a much more vivid awareness of the interconnectedness of all living things, and of how we humans are not isolated units, but beings who ebb and flow with one another in unseen and diverse ways. If we could only see our energy fields and thought patterns and how we affect each other continually through them, what a visual revelation that would be!

Although I can’t see these energy fields, I’m learning to “sense” them and trying to act accordingly. If we desire peace and harmony, we must emanate peace and harmony. If we desire positive change, we must embody it and send out those messages both tangible and subtle to create it. Based on this understanding, I make a conscious choice every day to try to be more harmonious in my energies, and this is an advance from the reactive me who used to prevail more often. Even though I sometimes fail, the direction is right.

Thoughts are like motes of dust
Spinning in a shaft of sun
And veering with the breeze.
Then every cell within us follows suit,
Just as flying flocks of birds
Follow the same impulse.
And we invoke it all,
This shifting music of the mind and body,
Caught between the jangling of our lower selves
And melodies sublime.
The question is,
What do we really want to dance to?

The Ongoing Urge to Transform

Today, instead of seeking individual enlightenment, I want enlightenment for all human beings everywhere. Of course this is a big dream with the present gruesome state of the world, but I realize that we are the vessels who must assist one another to transform, and we are meant to climb that holy mountain together! From this understanding comes a real desire to serve. I didn’t have this passionate desire before I came here, only a more limited wish to write good thoughts in the form of poetry and fiction.

I now want to “do something” and not just “think about” the changes I need to make in myself. First, I have to recognize all those attitudes and imperfections in myself that don’t come up to par, and then get to work—every day! The more I learn and grow, the more I feel I don’t know, and the smaller I seem to become—smaller but also truer, because instead of being riddled with insecurities I am now developing the self-respect that comes from trying (though still often falling short) to be in my higher self and putting God first.

It’s a tough journey, this desire to transmute into the highest that we can be, as it means dying to our little selves. And a lot of it has to do with just letting go. I think I sometimes take myself too seriously in my own slow metamorphosis, so then I try to lighten up and take a bigger view of it all: 

What is our struggle
But the agony of striving to be whole,
Endlessly seeking in divergent ways
To find the secret code within the Master Pattern?

 But God was gently laughing
As He poured the essence of creation through His fingers
His voice in myriad tones and rhythms
Making electrons spin.

 God went on laughing
As He bound each cell together,
And out came galaxies, and nebulae, and you, and me,
All dancing in a circle round His still and shining center.

 And God’s still laughing,
For He knows that every particle He makes
Will seek the blueprint of His artist’s dream
And all will come home again.

 So why don’t we cease our endless grind,
On treadmills of our own creation,
And let Him shake us out like crumpled wash
Then hang us on the line?

 Basking in sweet submission
Within His light and warmth and generosity,
Perhaps we’ll feel a holy peace at last—
One that reveals the way we need to go,
One that will help us start to hear the echoes
Of His deep eternal laugh.

Submission to our more divine inclinations! Yes—that’s the best route up the holy mountain!