First of all, may I start this by saying a tremendous thank you to everyone who has shown their support for my Busted in Bangkok record. Inevitably, it has also had its detractors, you can’t please ’em all, but the overwhelming response was one of love and generosity, and for that I feel truly loved and grateful. If you haven’t downloaded your copy, get it today for free or any amount that you choose. Get Busted in Bangkok here.
This little experiment has gotten me to thinking about how things are brought from the realm of the imagination into the sphere of concrete reality; the way the power of a thought produced in stillness can be brought to life with intention and dynamic activity. My dear friend and I had what you might call a heated discussion the other night. She was chiding me for expressing a limiting thought pattern regarding why I’m not yet manifesting all I may be capable of achieving, particularly financially. You know, the typical: ‘the things I choose to work at do not often make money’, ‘writers/artists/insert here- likely have to suffer for their art… that sort of cliched nonsense. The woman in question is one of the more amazing people I know, with a remarkable talent for manifesting what she conceives in her mind’s eye. In addition to coming from a family with no money yet building herself a considerable fortune of wealth and prosperity, she is also mother to two gorgeous boys, a regular practitioner as well as teacher of Kundalini meditation and yoga, environmental activist, charity worker, sister, daughter, gardener, lover, home owner, friend, designer, actress, model, writer and generally all around wonderful woman. This list could go on. Anyway, she got angry when I answered her questions as to why I was struggling to manifest certain ambitions of mine with hackneyed excuses and the lame old, ‘well, its a lot easier to make things happen when you have unlimited resources’ (okay, so I might have said ‘millions of dollars’), which particularly got her goat. My beautiful friend reminded me of the incredible power of the mind and the energy that thoughts can create. This is something that I used to know and wholeheartedly believe when I was, you guessed it, easily making lots of money. Somewhere along the line I guess I decided that it was easy to believe that you could think yourself into prosperity when you are making lots of money easily. And then I lived for some time in darkness and poverty. Perhaps it is a bit of a chicken and egg story. Hippys, shamans and physicists alike, all agree on the tremendous power of intention on matter. Finally, science is aligned with the more esoteric traditions of thought, in agreement over the single idea that atoms change and alter their behaviour when focused on. Yep folks, as I’m sure you have already heard, we can change the things we look at around us purely by changing the way we look at things. More on that in an interview with physicist Dr William Tiller here.
Far from claiming to be an expert of science, I muse on the notion of manifestation as I sit here, alone in a villa on Bali, looking out over rice fields, after just having a swim in an infinity pool, wearing nothing but sunglasses and coconut oil. Did I dream this up in order to make it happen? As I sat in London, it all seemed so unlikely and far away, but I dreamt it up and somehow it came true. How would I help to make it come together? The same way that any of us make anything happen. We conceive it, in silence or whatever method works for you (every creative person I have met has their own technique) and then we birth our little thought baby, out of the darkness and into the light, bringing what we only can see in our imagination into the world of reality that we all share in the perception of.
Neil Young, who is one of my musical heros, has a song along these lines called Field of Opportunity, from his 9th album, Comes A Time. I couldn’t find the version I love on Youtube but you can obviously get it on itunes and you can listen to a snippet here. I highly recommend this album; it is one of my favourites, although there are many, many wonderful Neil Young albums. Comes A Time was recorded in Florida, London, Nashville and California, and released in 1978, the year of my birth, but it was close to my heart before I even knew these synchronistic details. In fact, I became obsessed with one track, Four Strong Winds, and played it repeatedly on my record player at home (and even sang a cover of it a couple weeks ago in Thailand with a new friend, immensely talented Australian musician and composer, David Hyman). Four Strong Winds was actually not written by Neil Young but by Ian Tayson. The story goes that Neil also fell in love with this song and loved it so much that he would often take a bus miles and miles to a little bar in the middle of nowhere near Edmonton, Canada just to listen to it over and over again on the jukebox. Anyway, I digress slightly, but Neil has often used the subject of manifesting magic on the plane of pure potential (perhaps not in those exact words) as the central theme to a great number of his songs. And if Neil says so, that makes it true, only an idiot would disagree with that.
The idea for Busted in Bangkok came to me while I was meditating, in the silence between thoughts, in the zone, out in the void. Also from here came the idea for this piece that I write now, the seed of my novel, the shape of the upcoming travelogue, as well as countless songs, Midnight Steakout inspirations, this list could also go on and on. I am very happy to report that I have secured my first regular, paid writing gig: writing copy and web content for a friend’s social media division. This little job should hopefully go a significant way towards covering my basic monthly outgoings. Also very happy to share that a well-respected music licensing company has recently gotten in touch and are interested in sending my music out to music supervisors for film and TV, namely the new EP by The Silver Jay: It Felt Like A Kiss- The Princess Street Demos, that I wrote and recorded with Dave Noble in my front room last year. You can listen to that record here. The more I engage in this practice the more convinced I become that life really is the dream that we imagine and we are the creators of our own dream, or nightmare. I can manifest broken hearts, poverty, sickness, insanity, lack OR I can manifest love, abundance, health, joy and prosperity. From this day forward I consciously choose to focus on the positive and manifest all the light and love that is potentially possible.
If it is true that we are envisioners of our own world then it seems to me fundamentally intrinsic that we spend that all important time out on the plane of pure potential, or the field of opportunity, or whatever you prefer to call it (or not call it), envisioning our world, tuning in to the silence, plugging in to the mainframe, getting into the flow of the universe (my hippy parents will be so proud). There is apparently a wealth of images and information, direct from our subconscious or perhaps even the universal unconscious, to tap in to. While in Thailand recently, I was led on the same Astro Venus guided meditation two weeks in a row. The first time I went there, while sat in a stone-walled garden, Venus gave me a chisel to place in my heart. My immediate response to this was to think that the chisel was meant for me to metaphorically break open my heart (and the stone walls around my garden). My last brush with love came early this spring when I was far too busy to stop and deal with the emotions that this encounter had brought up. And so had I built a wall around my heart? The woman who led the meditation told me that she believed the gift of a chisel to have a literal interpretation- that I should obtain a chisel and try sculpting some stone or whittling some wood. I understood this to mean that I needed to play around more with my creativity, that my creative pursuits and endeavors had grown too serious. And so I resolved to bring a more playful spirit to my creativity and into my work. The second time I went into this meditation I was shown an open, expansive cliff-top meadow, with not a wall in sight. My heart is a beautiful open paradise. The Sun God gave me some eyelashes (clear perception or feminine wiles) and a sund (was this a tool for harvesting or was this sund= asunder: apart, divided, did I need to let go?), Mars knighted me with his sword while I wept and then penetrated me right through the stomach with his sword (was this a sexual image or did I need to bring my mind in touch with my emotions?), Venus gave me a feather in my throat (communication or self-expression?). Anyway, there is a rich tapestry available to anyone who takes the time to explore. As with anything, it all seems to be determined by having the commitment to take the time for your regular practice or discipline, whatever that may be.
Walking barefoot down a mountain path on a cliff by the beach, I tried to recount to some new friends a joke I had overheard while in the ocean earlier that day. I began, ‘Three monks are sat on a mountain. One monk said to the other monks…’ Everyone laughed hysterically. But I wasn’t finished, I was just reaching to remember what the monk had said. I tried again ‘After seven years, one monk says, “Consciousness is infinite”, after another seven years another monk says, “Consciousness is nothingness”, after another seven years, the final monk says, “if you two keep arguing, I’m going to leave”. Everyone present decided that my accidental joke was funnier than the one I had overheard. I guess it really is the way you tell ’em.
Sending you lots of love. Today I am joyously celebrating my 34th birthday.