At first, deciding about television was a simple matter of thoughtful grading. A slow matter, too, as I had been watching television for all these days and never thought of grading it.
I planned to do this test for a few days, since I knew the results of my scores before I began. I knew that my spirit would never be lifted by news programs, by all but a few well-written and photographed programs. If my grades were deep in Minus Territory, why was I wasting my spirit on television? Wouldn’t Quiet be a better background for my life, than some vast Minus television score?
Better I use a video screen to see videos, knowing I have to choose them first, and they’ll matter to me, and most likely be positive.
How I grade: Every news event in a half-hour newscast, would earn a grade from me, its viewer. There may be fifty events or more: a newswriter’s few sentences about what she feels is newsworthy, that’s one event; some sentences she finds tragic is another; that she finds funny is another; a story about a person; about nature; about entertainment; about the weather; a commercial: each scrap of video is an event.
If my spirit is lifted by what I’ve seen..................... 加1
If my spirit is unaffected..................................... Zero (0)
If my spirit is dragged down by this..................... 减去1
I’ll note these numbers on a piece of paper, then add them up to get a Plus (Pleasure for my spirit), a Nothing for it, or a Minus (Empty place where my spirit used to be).
Then before I began my grading began, something happened that confirmed my grades. The World Trade Towers collapsed.
It took me a few seconds to realize that the world in the United States would be changed. I knew that if I kept the television set, that I would see the first scenes of the collapse thousands and thousands of times. That the news would be full of it, there would be rings of death and war rippling out from Ground Zero.
Years of controversy, years of lies, efforts to find truth, efforts to crush new evidence of the event. I didn’t think of the number of young mortals of our military who would die, and the number of whatever we decided would be the population of Theirs to die. I didn’t think of the money that would be earned for the companies who manufactured the tools of war. I didn’t think what a great way to earn billions of dollars for war denominated companies! I could have thought about that, but I didn’t.
Instead, I put the television set into the back of the pickup truck and left it at the recycling center.
My Television Set Today: My Laptop Computer
Would I have liked some of the programs I never saw? Probably. I didn’t feel sad for not seeing them, I just didn’t know they were on the invisible channels for my non-existent television screen.
Only recently have I received broadcasts, usually about food and exercise from a transmitter you’ve seen before: my dog.
Aside from this, gradually, the Internet gave a small part of the world that I half-way cared about. I heard about the tsunami, about the Japanese nuclear meltdown, about the Malaysian airliner on the web. Did I do anything about these events? No.
My world became local. The little towns nearby continued through all the crises with not even a tremble from the world’s earthquakes. I got to know the forest nearby, noticed when the sun rose and set, when the moon turned about the earth. I wrote about a world much more important to me than the television reports.
I lifted my days on some events that changed me, but they were never on the channels. I flew off-airways in small aircraft. I had a crash that taught me that no matter what happens in space-time, nobody dies. Horrors and tragedies in daily life here on Earth, they don’t much matter to our friends in the afterlife, those worlds where we live for countless multi millions of what we would call years. As mortals, we can decide whether any event is a tragedy or a delight or both: a belief of ours.
Is This Lifting My Spirit?
I’ve changed my consciousness from television to the Internet and to books and personal life.
I’ve discovered that Lockie, my Shetland Sheepdog, is capable of finding a small half of a candy bar that was hidden behind a computer on a table that would not support his weight without collapsing . . . it was not possible for him to have retrieved that candy bar. But he did. I was not aware he had left the kitchen when he disappeared to make that remarkable retrieval.
Is that story ever going to be on television? I hope not. Has my spirit been lifted from the books I’ve read? Balloon-like has it lifted. Lots of books on death and dying, lots of computer information about crop circles, aliens, events that may even touch you when I put them on the website, offered for your interest, from mine.
How do I think about politics? I don’t think about politics. At all. If at some day politics touches my world, decides that I am a loss to their world, that’s fine. Destroy writers, political leaders may say, extinguish my belief in life as a mortal? Certainly, if they wish. Destroying our bodies or not, by one or by millions, there’s no person or event who has the power to kill me or you or any expression of life (I learned that from my airplane crash).
Playing with Our Beliefs
There are thousands of, part of me says millions of, television news stories I’ve never seen. I don’t know about murders, about all sorts of crime, about terrible accidents, about natural events that kill and displace humans. Senseless political events that kill so many others, I’ve never heard of them. Does it hurt me, that I haven’t been told about them, and so many others that never made it into the news? No. If I had a chance to go back through the last ten years and learn about them, would I do it? Nope.
This world, just like others, like planets, like heavens everywhere, is a belief for those of us who accept them. We play with our beliefs, shift them, change them, dance with space-times till they cannot teach us more, and then we fly into dimensions where we can learn other things that we’ve never heard about.
All these beliefs of mine, I didn’t have them in my daily consciousness when I started this lifetime. Gradually gradually, year after year, a web of light spun around me as they do for most everyone. Ideas that made sense to me, they stayed. They fit like puzzle pieces into the other pieces which had stayed, too. Right now I’m learning a difficult lesson — that loneliness is a self-imposed belief. That we have others who we’ve cared for and who care for us, though perhaps not one of them has a body in space-time.
Can’t some of them be still wearing a body? Of course they can. I think I’ve been learning that when we stop trying to meet one other who will change our life, it will happen by itself.
Do I know that’s true, body or not? Yes. And that it will be a surprise? Without question.
Do I enjoy it? Not a bit. Yet again, slowly slowly, I’m learning how to touch a loved one with no body at all. How to let a spirit visit my mind. Gradually I’m learning a lesson we’ve had time and again – how to live in a spiritual world even while we believe in space and time for our lessons. Every lifetime we decide, regardless of others, regardless even in this age of television, who controls the adventures of our lives.
How much patience, how much care we pour, into our education!
一名前美国空军飞行员，吉普赛barnstormer和飞机机械师，理查德·巴赫是作者 海鸥乔纳森利文斯顿, 幻想, 一, 永远各地的桥梁，并 许多其他书籍。 他的大部分著作已半自传体，采用从他的生活实际的或虚构的事件来说明他的理念。 在1970， 海鸥乔纳森利文斯顿 打破了风从那以后全精装的销售记录。 它在1,000,000销量超过1972份孤独。 第二本书， 幻想：一个不情愿的弥赛亚冒险，发表在1977。 访问Richard的网站： www.richardbach.com