I Have A Prayer: By Joyce Sweinberg



I decided early to give my life to something eternal and absolute.
Not to these little gods that are here today and gone tomorrow,
but to God who is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Martin Luther King, Jr. From “Rediscovering Lost Values,” Feb. 28, 1954

I have reproduced below a letter I delivered to the principal at my son’s elementary school on January 20, 2009. It could easily have been written in any of the many small towns in the USA, as well as in many places around the world. It could easily have addressed the first cousins of racism, such as religious intolerance or sexism.  The child who was victimized by intolerance could have been American Indian, or Eastern Indian, or Asian. It could have happened anywhere. It just so happens that it happened here, right in my hometown, the child who was victimized was my young mixed race son, and I am the one to author the letter.

I have removed some parts of the letter which make it possible to identify the child who called my 9 year old son a nigger on the school bus, to protect him, because he is only 10 or 11 years old and is much too young to bear the responsibility for what he has learned somewhere. It may have been from irresponsible lyrics and images shoved into the eyes and ears of the children of the USA by record companies more interested in making money than uplifting the listener with music rather than raucous unholy odes to violence and intolerance. It may have been from the home environment where conversations are not censored and that which is not spoken in public is freely flowing for the children to hear. It may have been from the TV where black folks are paid to refer to themselves in such a manner, supposedly as an inside joke which only one black can call another, but one which reaps financial rewards as it crushes the human compassion and spirit of all who come into contact with it. This child is not the true source of the comment, but the unwitting mirror reflecting the world in which he lives …


January 20, 2009

It is with great sadness that I write this explanation for Jesse’s absence from school this past Friday, January 15. On Thursday evening, Jesse set the stage for his stay home the next day, telling me he did not feel well, that his belly hurt and he had a headache. When I went upstairs to wake him in the morning, he first told me that he had thrown up in my bathroom. Being an attorney provides me with the interrogation skills I need to get to the truth, so I asked him, point blank, “Where did you throw up…did you do it in the toilet?”  “Yes,”  he tells me.  “Did you flush it yet?”  He now knows where I am headed, to the toilet to sniff for the unmistakable smell of vomit. So he backs off and admits that he “almost” threw up.  Still, he persists in saying that he does not feel well..his belly hurts.  So I move on.  “Well, I have to go somewhere this morning, and I cannot change the commitment. That means you will have to stay home by yourself, or you can come with me, but I still have to go. (He does not know it but I have a friend who is coming over to work on some projects at my house, so he will not be there alone) Also, you do not go out anywhere today and no friends are allowed to come to the house, even if you happen to feel better later today. Got it?”

He thinks for a moment, and despite the thought that he might be here alone and has to stay confined to the house all day, insists that he does not feel well. Having passed my test of his veracity, I let him stay home. As has happened before, as the day wears on, he becomes “cured.” When my ex-husband stops by to visit him, he is not allowed to go out and hang out somewhere with him since he had stayed home sick that day. Observing his miraculous recovery from his belly ache as we hear him squealing down the hallway playing one of his video games, his father suggests that he will try to see the real reason behind his absence, as he is of the opinion that there is usually some motive behind the boys’ “illnesses” which cause them to miss school. While I trust my own judgment on this most of the time, this time, I could not help but wonder as well, so he goes back to hang out with him and see what he can find out.

He emerges from the room a few minutes later to tell me that Jesse says his homework was too hard. Homework? He told me he had no homework. Little liar! But he has gone to school before not having done his homework to face the consequences and has never had trouble confessing to me in the morning before school that he had homework. Still I do not think much about it as I am cooking and preoccupied with that. His dad goes back to him again. About ten minutes later, he comes out again to tell me this…The day before, Thursday, after Jesse got on the bus, he sat in the seat across from a boy and his younger brother. With his younger brother listening and anyone else in hearing range to hear it, the young boy turned to Jesse and said…”Silly rabbit, Trix are for niggers.” It was such a stupid childish statement, a silly joke really. He may not have had any conception of what he was saying, yet his message plunged itself deep into my heart with the butcher knife of racial prejudice. He does not want to talk about it, but I wonder how the knife felt as it plunged into Jesse’s heart.

At first, he was upset with his dad for telling me this, already hearing me from down the hallway saying that I wanted to have a conference with the boy and his parents and the school guidance counselor. He does not want to talk about it. He also informs me, in all my whiteness, that my ancestors probably had slaves. I laugh and tell him that my ancestors did not have enough money to be slave owners, but his thoughts and feelings do not go unnoticed towards my whiteness. Of course, he has the advantage of having a mother who is white who loves him and whom he loves, who wraps her arms around him and takes him into her heart, so he has an immediate salve to the racism around him by his very life circumstances.

[Text describing the child’s first name and bus stop removed to protect privacy of child involved]  Please determine who the child is so that we can arrange a meeting at school with him and his younger brother and at least one of his parents. Please be assured that I am not angry…I lived with racial prejudice for many years when I was married to Jesse’s father, which included my father’s inability to accept my life choices because of his own racism. I have already processed and clearly understand that many good people, my father having been one of them, are prejudiced, so I have no axe to grind. However, I do want this young boy and his parents to clearly understand the ramifications of his statement. My young son did not want to go to school Friday because of it and I am still crying tears of sadness and pain for him as I write this note to you.

When I tried to question him he did not want to talk to me about it. I asked him why and he said “Because you will try to make it right.” While I am secretly pleased that he sees me that way, I am also saddened knowing that he has no trouble coming to me to make it right when he gets into a fight with his brother, or his belly hurts, or one of the bigger neighborhood boys got too rough with him and hurt him.  His father tells me that Jesse is fine and that he is an intelligent young boy and will handle it, just like he did as he grew up.  I am not satisfied with this answer or this approach. Yesterday, we celebrated the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., to honor him and his contributions to our world. Today, our first black president will move into the White House, marking the beginning of a new era for the world around us. As he walks through those doors and sets up house, the suffering around him will not stop just because he is there. It will take much more than that to slowly erase the lines created by racism in our world, and it is not his job…under His guidance, it is ours. I await your response to my request.


Joyce Sweinberg




While Barrack Obama took the oath to serve this country as one who is considered the first black President of the US (notwithstanding the fact that he is not black, but is mixed race, just like my Jesse), I saw and heard none of it as I sat at my computer finishing the letter to deliver to the school principal so that the matter could be handled. And while it was a day for celebration for most, it was also a day for somber reflection and shedding of the tears of  sadness I felt at the irony of the circumstances giving rise to this letter on this date. Yet, this is a beginning toward the change which cries out for deliverance through our actions predicated in tolerance and universal love.

Where should we look for the answers to our pleas for peace and love in this world?  There is no one who acts without His impetus, so why not appeal to the very Source? Has He not promised to redeem us from our suffering and to maintain Sanatana Dharma? He is a Keeper of His Promises. So let us appeal to His mercy and love to Grace us with that which He has always promised and vowed to do when we need it most…to make His presence felt as He manifests to uphold dharma…Sanatana Dharma (the eternal truth of right and proper action), heralded in the Bhagavad Gita ( the Celestial Song of God), a holy gift to the world from ancient India delivered by Lord Krishna Himself.

And what is this Eternal Truth contained in the Veda,
the Truth that shines effulgent in the eyes and burns brightly
in the souls of all sentient beings upon this earth?
What is this Truth which unites us all even when it is
obscured by the veil of our ignorance of it…?
quoted by H.H. Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati in his article “Vedic Vision of God” …

Ishavasyam idam sarvam
yat kincit jagatyam jagat

The Veda is not saying that there is one God;
it says there is only God.*

Eternally In His Service,

* https://luthar2.files.wordpress.com/2009/02/vedic_vision_of_god.pdf

Infant And The Sage Consciousness: By Dr. Mourad Rashad

Infant’s Consciousness and the Sage Consciousness


Adam and the Garden of Eden


Christ Consciousness and Man’s consciousness

If we consider that every born child is “Adam “and he is born in the Garden of Eden, then we can glimpse a lot of things.

Man is initially created an insightful awareness –when he was an infant until his early childhood. An insightful awareness that sincerely and devoutly contemplates the surroundings without any thought of him as a center. The surroundings or better termed the content of -so to say- “his” consciousness or awareness.

This content is what I call the “Divine Manifestation”. The child did not yet categorize nor differentiates a mother, a father, a tree, a mountain, a toy or –so to say- “his” body.

Why I call it Divine Manifestation? It is a Divine Manifestation from the perspective of the infant. What makes it a Divine Manifestation? It cares for and sustains the infant, all the infant’s needs are fulfilled instantaneously, and the infant lacks nothing. Perfection is fully realized in his immediate experience. If man contemplates this Divine Manifestation, he will realize that he opened “his” eyes and experienced this Divine Manifestation, “he” came into being in that Manifestation, “he” sprouted from that Manifestation, “he” was just in this Divine Manifestation. He might even call it the Creator of the appearances experienced. The Whole content of consciousness or awareness could be considered his Mother or Father. The infant opened “his” eyes and experienced this Divine Appearance, it was always there, and the infant came into It. This Divine Manifestation, when examined more closely from the position of the infant with a deep adult comprehension, It will be seen that It is ALL Caring, Sustains Itself and Sustains all the Manifestations or Appearances in It. It is ALL Caring and Sustaining, the ALL Supporting, the Only Doer and even the ALL and Only Aware; because from the infant perspective, the awareness is -so to say- not “his” yet, the infant did not yet attribute this Awareness to any individual and separate item in this Divine Manifestation. The ALL Cognizant and the ALL Wise. The Only Caring, Aware, Cognizant, Doer and Wise, every single Manifestation is being taken care of, supported and sustained. Care and Sustenance reaches every Manifestation according to its needs. Nothing is in excess. The Manifestations are harmoniously interwoven and wisely sustained. These attributes –just described- fit snugly to the attributes of The Lord, The Divine, or God. A God or a Divinity or a Lord that Reigns Alone, Dwells Alone, A One without a second and constitutes an integrated Oneness. An Oneness where the infant’s consciousness is an organic component in this Oneness of the Experience. That is why all religions consecrate and Praise this Pure and Innocent consciousness, because it mirrors the Divine Manifestation faithfully without any division and without any cleavage. In other words, This Pure Consciousness and the Divine Manifestation are actually ONE; they were never separated at any moment in time.

Nevertheless, due to the process of conditioning of the infant by his society, the infant grew an ego or a self-assertive egoistic mind. Man’s ego or self-assertive mind was created due to this process. This newly created ego, this newly created monster claimed the sustenance and care to itself, thus changed this original Pure Consciousness of man into the self-assertive egoistic mind. This self-assertive egoistic mind lost all devotion and appreciation to the Divine Manifestation and instead replaced it with egoistic and possessive love. Accordingly, the man with his self-assertive egoistic mind viewed what was originally a Divine Manifestation as fragmented separate and warring items. Separate items experiencing pain and misery. This transformation is for one sigle reason, just to exercise his own free will, to assert his own individual and separate existence. This is man’s illusion; this is the dream of the man having a self-assertive egoistic mind. That is why the human mystical legacy described man’s world as an illusion.

This transformation, of what was initially the One Integrated Divine Manifestation, is the worldly life of multiplicity we now experience, due to the influence of the self-assertive egoistic mind. Consequently, all harmony, care and support of that Divine Manifestation were lost totally and replaced by the chaotic world we now experience. This lead man to further use his self-assertive egoistic mind in order to try to imitate –poorly and vainly- the original Harmony, expressed in the Care and Sustenance of the Original Divine Manifestation. In other words, man with his self-assertive egoistic mind is trying to take the role of God’s Harmony in the newly transformed worldly life. For that reason man with his self-assertive egoistic mind and all its fantastic conceptual creations, were considered by the three monotheistic religions (Judaism, Christianity & Islam) as the original sin of Adam.

An Original Sin, for which Adam deserved to be expelled from the Garden of Eden. Why Adam, deserved this punishment? Because by eating from the tree of the knowledge of good an evil Adam acted as if he is God. Adam, with his newly acquired knowledge of good and evil thought that he will know what is good for his life and what is bad for his life, thus he has no further need for God.

That damned transformation of the original Divine Manifestation into the chaotic worldly life is only redeemable through regaining man’s initial pure and innocent consciousness or awareness. This can only take place by renouncing the acquired self-assertive instincts and re-attaining the genuine spirit of fathomless devotional reverence that has characterized man’s perception of the content of his awareness during his infancy and early childhood. In other words man has to do without his self-assertive egoistic mind and cultivate the devotional awareness that will inhibit and prevent man from taking the liberties of mutilating and fragmenting that holy ALL SUSTAINING content into the multiplicity of limitless differentiated items. Diverse items that can serve as objects to man’s free will or doer-ship under the influence of man’s self-assertive egoistic mind.

In the Gospel of Thomas Logion # 4

Jesus said, “The person old in days won’t hesitate to ask a little child seven days old about the place of life, and that person will live. For many of the first will be last, and will become a single one.”

In the Gospel of Thomas Logion # 22

Jesus saw some babies nursing. He said to his disciples, “These nursing babies are like those who enter the (Father’s) kingdom.” They said to him, “Then shall we enter the (Father’s) kingdom as babies?” Jesus said to them, “When you make the two into one, and when you make the inner like the outer and the outer like the inner, and the upper like the lower, and when you make male and female into a single one, so that the male will not be male nor the female be female, when you make eyes in place of an eye, a hand in place of a hand, a foot in place of a foot, an image in place of an image, then you will enter [the kingdom].”

It is that fathomless devotional reverence (what all religions term it Love of God) is man’s sole safeguard against any relapse into his heretical worship of the worldly diversity and multiplicity.

This is Christ Consciousness and this is the Sage Consciousness; in contradistinction to the infant’s Consciousness. What is the difference between Christ Consciousness and the infant’s Consciousness? Christ Consciousness have made the full journey from an infant with Pure Consciousness to a man with a self-assertive egoistic mind –with all the pain and misery- and finally returned home as a man with an infant’s Pure Consciousness. A man with the Pure Consciousness of the infant, together the understanding and the reverence to this virgin Pure Consciousness. While the infant has a cycle to complete, because he yielded to the tiniest temptation to let that virgin Pure Conscious become transformed to the self-assertive egoistic mind under the influence of conditioning.

The Divine and The Ego: By Dr. Mourad Rashad

To understand that the ego is the disease, the mind is the disease, this is true understanding. What is the difference between ego or mind and insight or Consciousness?

Insight is a gift from the Divine, is a link with the Divine, and is the unbreakable bond with the Divine. Insight appears when your consciousness is temporarily freed from the influence of the ego or mind and regains its original condition.

One has to know, that we are born with only an Insightful Consciousness, later on, due to the child’s conditioning by the society, this Insightful Consciousness is transformed to our everyday mind or our ego, which in turn transforms the Original Divine Existence into our everyday world we experience. This is the problem. Our everyday mind or ego is our transformed Original Nature due to conditioning by the society and is the root cause of experiencing our world with all its pains and miseries together with a trivial scent of pleasure and fun, instead of experiencing the Divine Existence. The mind or ego is not our true nature.

This original Insightful Consciousness is what is meant by the word “Heart” in mystical and spiritual literature.

Originally, this Insightful Consciousness is integrated with the Divine Existence. It never departed from this Divine Existence. This Insightful Consciousness is the breath of God in Adam’s nostril -according to Genesis. This is the Spark, the Flame, and the Spirit of God with humans.

When you know that the ego is the disease, the mind is the disease, conditioning by the society is the disease, then you start the process of de-conditioning, you start unlearning what you have learnt, in order to regain the Insightful Consciousness, which will guide you back to be in perpetual integration with the Divine Existence. A Divine Existence that is Wise, Cognizant, Deathless, Eternal and Blissful.

Then Insight starts to clear, you see the world in a different light, you start glimpsing the Divine Existence, and you start learning from your life. You look at life more appreciatively, you become no longer interested in seeing your old world, because now you come to know that there is a Divine Existence underlying what you used to call and experience by your mind or ego as my world. Moreover, your ticket back to this Divine Existence is de-conditioning to regain your original Insightful Consciousness.