Therapy for the Soul — I say a little prayer for you.

Photo by Lampos Aritonang on Unsplash

With a new year comes revision. And alignment. Our inner core (aka House) needs peace and the best is to meditate or pray to achieve deeper understanding. 🙏(NO ES QUE YO LO HAGA, PERO SUENA LINDO) wink ;

News Wrap Edition #3 of Volume 2

Author: Agustín Borrazás

Question: What exactly is a soul?

Answer: The glossary at the back of the U.S. version of the Catechism of the Catholic Church defines “soul” as follows:

The spiritual principle of human beings. The soul is the subject of human consciousness and freedom; soul and body together form one unique human nature.
Each human soul is individual and immortal, immediately created by God.
The soul does not die with the body, from which it is separated by death, and with which it will be reunited in the final resurrection.

The world’s primary religions fall into two categories: Abrahamic religions, such as Christianity, Judaism, and Islam; and Indian religions, which include Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, and others.
Of the world’s major religions, Christianity is the largest, with more than two billion followers.

Photo by Anil Xavier on Unsplash

The Hebrew terms נפש‎ nefesh (literally “living being”), רוח‎ ruach (literally “wind”), נשמה‎ neshamah (literally “breath”), חיה‎ chayah (literally “life”) and יחידה‎ yechidah (literally “singularity”) are used to describe the soul or spirit.

In Judaism the soul is believed to be given by God to Adam as mentioned in Genesis,

Then the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. Genesis 2:7

Judaism relates the quality of one’s soul to one’s performance of the commandments (mitzvot) and reaching higher levels of understanding, and thus closeness to God.
A person with such closeness is called a tzadik.
Therefore, Judaism embraces the commemoration of the day of one’s death, nahala/Yahrtzeit and not the birthday as a festivity of remembrance, for only toward the end of life’s struggles, tests and challenges could human souls be judged and credited for righteousness.
Judaism places great importance on the study of the souls.

Kabbalah and other mystic traditions go into greater detail into the nature of the soul. Kabbalah separates the soul into five elements, corresponding to the five worlds:

  1. Nefesh, related to natural instinct.
  2. Ruach, related to emotion and morality.
  3. Neshamah, related to intellect and the awareness of God.
  4. Chayah, considered a part of God, as it were.
  5. Yechidah. This aspect is essentially one with God.

Kabbalah also proposed a concept of reincarnation, the gilgul.
(See also nefesh habehamit the “animal soul”.)

Some Jewish traditions assert that the soul is housed in the luz bone, though traditions disagree as to whether it is the atlas at the top of the spine sacrum at bottom of the spine.

Are you staying with me here? 😊

Why does my soul feel so bad? by Moby

In many religious, philosophical, and mythological traditions, the soul is the incorporeal essence of a living being.
Soul or psyche (Ancient Greek: ψυχή psykhḗ, of ψύχειν psýkhein, “to breathe”, cf. Latin ‘anima’) comprises the mental abilities of a living being: reason, character, feeling, consciousness, qualia, memory, perception, thinking, etc. Depending on the philosophical system, a soul can either be mortal or immortal.

Greek philosophers, such as Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, understood that the soul (ψυχή psykhḗ) must have a logical faculty, the exercise of which was the most divine of human actions. At his defense trial, Socrates even summarized his teachings as nothing other than an exhortation for his fellow Athenians to excel in matters of the psyche since all bodily goods are dependent on such excellence (Apology 30a–b). Aristotle reasoned that a man’s body and soul were his matter and form respectively: the body is a collection of elements and the soul is the essence.

Thomas Aquinas took this view into Christianity.

In Judaism and in some Christian denominations, (except for angels) only human beings have immortal souls (although immortality is disputed within Judaism and the concept of immortality may have been influenced by Plato). For example, Thomas Aquinas, borrowing directly from Aristotle’s On the Soul, attributed “soul” (anima) to all organisms but argued that only human souls are immortal.

Other religions (most notably Hinduism and Jainism) believe that all living things from the smallest bacterium to the largest of mammals are the souls themselves (Atman, jiva) and have their physical representative (the body) in the world. The actual self is the soul, while the body is only a mechanism to experience the karma of that life. Thus if one sees a tiger then there is a self-conscious identity residing in it (the soul), and a physical representative (the whole body of the tiger, which is observable) in the world. Some teach that even non-biological entities (such as rivers and mountains) possess souls.
This belief is called animism.

Photo by Ahmad Odeh on Unsplash

Hinduism

Ātman is a Sanskrit word that means inner self or soul. In Hindu philosophy, especially in the Vedanta school of Hinduism, Ātman is the first principle, the true self of an individual beyond identification with phenomena, the essence of an individual. In order to attain liberation (moksha), a human being must acquire self-knowledge (atma jnana), which is to realize that one’s true self (Ātman) is identical with the transcendent self Brahman according to Advaita Vedanta.

The six orthodox schools of Hinduism believe that there is Ātman (self, essence) in every being.

In Hinduism and Jainism, a jiva (Sanskrit: जीव, jīva, alternative spelling jiwa; Hindi: जीव, jīv, alternative spelling jeev) is a living being, or any entity imbued with a life force.

The concept of jiva in Jainism is similar to atman in Hinduism. However, some Hindu traditions differentiate between the two concepts, with jiva considered as individual self, while atman as that which is universal unchanging self that is present in all living beings and everything else as the metaphysical Brahman. The latter is sometimes referred to as jiva-atman (a soul in a living body).

Islam

The Quran, the holy book of Islam, uses two words to refer to the soul: rūḥ (translated as spirit, consciousness, pneuma or “soul”) and nafs (translated as self, ego, psyche or “soul”), cognates of the Hebrew nefesh and ruach. The two terms are frequently used interchangeably, though rūḥ is more often used to denote the divine spirit or “the breath of life”, while nafs designates one’s disposition or characteristics. In Islamic philosophy, the immortal rūḥ “drives” the mortal nafs, which comprises temporal desires and perceptions necessary for living. Two of the passages in the Quran that mention the rûh occur in chapters 17 (“The Night Journey”) and 39 (“The Troops”):

And they ask you, [O Muhammad], about the Rûh. Say, “The Rûh is of the affair of my Lord. And mankind has not been given of knowledge except a little.

— Quran 17:85

Allah takes the souls at the time of their death, and those that do not die [He takes] during their sleep. Then He keeps those for which He has decreed death and releases the others for a specified term. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought..

— Quran 39:42

Photo by Ömer Haktan Bulut on Unsplash

Señor mío y Dios mío, creo firmemente que estás aquí, que me ves, que me oyes; te adoro con profunda reverencia, te pido perdón de mis pecados, y gracia para hacer con fruto este rato de oración.
Madre mía Inmaculada, San José, mi Padre y Señor, Ángel de mi guarda, interceded por mí. ✝️

Here’s more:

The human person, created in the image of God, is a being at once corporeal and spiritual. The biblical account expresses this reality in symbolic language when it affirms that “then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.”
Man, whole and entire, is therefore
willed by God.

In Sacred Scripture the term “soul” often refers to human life or the entire human person. But “soul” also refers to the innermost aspect of man, that which is of greatest value in him, that by which he is most especially in God’s image:
“Soul” signifies the
spiritual principle in man.

The human body shares in the dignity of “the image of God”: it is a human body precisely because it is animated by a spiritual soul, and it is the whole human person that is intended to become, in the body of Christ, a temple of the Spirit.

Man, though made of body and soul, is a unity. Through his very bodily condition he sums up in himself the elements of the material world. Through him they are thus brought to their highest perfection and can raise their voice in praise freely given to the Creator. For this reason man may not despise his bodily life. Rather he is obliged to regard his body as good and to hold it in honor since God has created it and will raise it up on the last day.

The unity of soul and body is so profound that one has to consider the soul to be the “form” of the body: i.e., it is because of its spiritual soul that the body made of matter becomes a living, human body; spirit and matter, in man, are not two natures united, but rather their union forms a single nature.

The Church teaches that every spiritual soul is created immediately by God — it is not “produced” by the parents — and also that it is immortal: It does not perish when it separates from the body at death, and it will be reunited with the body at the final Resurrection.

Sometimes the soul is distinguished from the spirit: St. Paul for instance prays that God may sanctify his people “wholly,” with “spirit and soul and body” kept sound and blameless at the Lord’s coming. The Church teaches that this distinction does not introduce a duality into the soul. “Spirit” signifies that from creation man is ordered to a supernatural end and that his soul can gratuitously be raised beyond all it deserves to communion with God.

The spiritual tradition of the Church also emphasizes the heart, in the biblical sense of the depths of one’s being, where the person decides for or against God. (CCC 362–368)

I really want to take advantage of these last moments to be able to write what is going to be my last wrap of the year on Grey Swan Guild since I have been collaborating for a long time as and editor and it’s time to move on leaving space for new members and there fresh perspectives.

https://www.menshealth.com/health/a28335230/soul-therapy/ AHEAD.

In the past, you had to travel to an ashram in India or a pueblo in Sedona to acquire the wisdom of mystic folks, but it’s 2022, the Internet is alive and well, and thanks to some very famous advocates, soul therapy has reached the mainstream.

Oprah Winfrey is essentially the godmother of the movement. Her podcast, Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations, features successful people — Bradley Cooper, Alanis Morissette, Sebastian Junger, Eckhart Tolle, Elizabeth Gilbert — talking about how they learned to quiet their egos and get down to the business of listening to their souls. And if you’re thinking, Of course Oprah has a woo-woo show about finding your life’s purpose, then turn on any podcast helmed by a semi-woke bro and you’ll stumble on the likes of Joe Rogan and Russell Brand dissecting myriad ideas that boil down to versions of the same big question: “What the hell are we doing here?”

Preach!. Amen (can I have an AMEN?)

This rabid search for meaning in modern life finds us turning to new territory. The unexplainable. The unquantifiable. It’s why venture capitalists have pinpointed astrology as the next big investment, with horoscope-driven apps like Co-Star and The Pattern on the road to rivaling titans Spotify and Tinder. It’s why yoga studios pop up like Starbucks on corners in Everytown, U. S. A., and why throngs of Americans are dabbling in spirituality in a way we haven’t seen since the ’60s. (Their hero? Democratic Presidential long-shot Marianne Williamson, who is dominating headlines–and, if we’re being honest, confusing millions of Americans–by bringing soul talk into the political realm.) It’s why celebrated food journalist Michael Pollan just wrote a best-selling book about the holistic benefits of psychedelic drugs, and why Rogan’s trippy podcast is downloaded nearly 20 million times per month.

We’re living in a time of shattered illusions and soul-crushing truths. Divided politics reigns. Economic crisis looms. #MeToo landed like a Mayweather uppercut. Because we’re all fairly sure that the answer to our anxiety does not lie in more money, more sex, or more muscles, we’re looking somewhere else: within ourselves.

Following our soul’s plan is the proverbial hero’s journey, says Onnit CEO, author, and podcast host Aubrey Marcus. It’s what Joseph Campbell meant when he wrote, “We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.”

Marcus, whose health-first approach functions as a kind of Trojan-horse spirituality for biohackers and gym rats — he extols the benefits of ayahuasca, cold exposure, and ecstatic dance, among other modalities- — tells me he believes the term soul is too loaded to use responsibly and has too many religious implications. He prefers to refer to our “true calling,” or our “awareness.”

“We all have a calling from when we were little kids,” Marcus says. “What we think we want to do with our lives. But after a while, we kind of accept our compromises. We distract ourselves, intoxicate ourselves, placate ourselves. Most of us don’t ever take the time to get still and listen to our awareness.”

To find that stillness, Marcus suggests trying spiritual practices like yoga and meditation or spending time in nature, but most of all: getting quiet. “Put your phone in a drawer for two days and don’t talk to anyone,” he says. “Just be with yourself.”

So why aren’t we all getting quiet and following our souls? It turns out that’s a pretty complicated question.

Photo by Ashley Batz on Unsplash

While we can make distinctions between “soul” and “spirit” as St. Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 5:23, they are fundamentally the same in man (CCC 367). That is, as the Church teaches, the “soul signifies the spiritual principle of man. . . . The human body is human precisely because it is animated by a spiritual soul” (CCC 363–364).

A soul, on its most basic level, is the “life principle” or “animating principle” of a body. In other words, all living bodies have a soul. If they did not have souls, they would not be alive. While plants, animals, and anything living contains a soul, the human soul is unique. In man, the soul has not only vegetative powers (as plants have) and sensitive powers (as animals have) but also rational powers, which makes it akin to pure spirits in that sense. It is this rational power that separates us from other living beings in this world.

Consequently, we say that a human is unique among living beings because a human is a created, immortal spirit united to and animating a body. In other words, man is the only bodily being whose soul is a spirit (animals are not spiritual), and the only spirit which is a soul (angels do not have a body and therefore no soul). Only in humans do we find both soul and spirit. Indeed, man is a union or composite of body and soul. As Vatican II reminds us, “the human person, though made of body and soul, is a unity. In itself, in its very bodily condition, it synthesizes the elements of the material world, which through it are thus brought to their highest perfection” (Gaudium et Spes 14)

Photo by Pedro Lima on Unsplash

I encounter mysticism in all numbers and today’s numbers. 21/1/2022 what not to love about, down here in the southern hemisphere, summer arrived a month ago. And the worlds thoughts and issues seem to re emerge and start gainig form as the days go by.

Even if the National Guard fill in for teachers, record number of workers are out sick, workers push back on hot-desking, Omicron retreats on NYC, Nyemar Jr. and Serena Williams buying a Bored Apes #BAYC or Microsfot acquisition of Activison, the need for prayer and soul healing / therapy for the soul has to be present and integrated into our busy scheudules and feeds/timelines.

Todas las noches, por ejemplo, antes de dormir; es un buen hábito repasar las acciones del día haciendonos cargo de nuestras faltas: pidiendo perdón y haciendo un propósito de enmendar el camino.

Lo que más gustaba de mi tiempo viviendo con los monjes era el rezo final de la noche cuando en la salmodia se pedía por un buen descanso y una santa muerte. Sabiendo que en cualquier momento tenemos que estar prontos como para rendir un exámen. Que es la vida mismo. Eso quedará para otro día.

I really hope you reading this my find peace of the soul and keep nourishing it to achieve new highs and always be grateful with that sacred treasure you have been gifted and granted to create the beautiful canvas and cosmic web of humanity and creation.

Prayers for All Souls

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.
And let the perpetual light shine upon them.
May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

(almost 2 years into covid endemic and we take a brief moment to remember)

Photo by Ashkan Forouzani on Unsplash

Grey Swan Guild — Join of 50 Shades of Grey Thinkers

Hopefully some of you will think about joining our collective that tries to make sense of thee world and the future. There may even be heroes among us.

We are a post-modern version of the Guild — this is what we like to do:

Join us for Montreal Month — January 2022’s Featured Guild City and come to its town hall January 26th: https://bit.ly/gsgMontreal

Grey Swan Guild

Making Sense of the World’s Biggest Challenges — curating and creating knowledge through observation, informed futurism, and analysis🦢

Que la bendición de Dios todopoderoso + que es Padre + Hijo + y Espíritu Santo descienda sobre todo aquél que lea y lo acompañe siempre. Amén.

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Making Sense of the World’s Biggest Challenges & Next Grey Swans — curating and creating knowledge through observation, informed futurism, and analysis🦢

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