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NHNE News Brief 3
Friday, December 9, 1994

"A thought-provoking exploration
of the extraordinary times in which we live."

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CONTENTS:
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QUOTABLES:
Strange New Things

LETTERS TO & FROM NHNE:
Ghosts & False Prophets
About Our ACIM Report
About Our Scallion Report

CYBERSPACE UPDATE:
A Nervous System Over Our Entire Culture
We Are All Here Together
Spacious In Their Thinking
Hey, Welcome To Reality
Information Is The True Currency Of Democracy
Internet Terrorist Tactics (Baked Cats Anyone?)
The Internet Liberation Front & Other Internet Hackers

DREAMS, VISIONS & REVELATIONS:
An Introduction To Dream Work

JESUS:
The Real Meaning Of Christmas
(According To A Course In Miracles)

GORDON-MICHAEL SCALLION UPDATE:
A New California/Nevada Volcano?!
Ominous Rumblings Near Mexico City
European Earth Changes
Scallion Earth Changes Hotline Number

CURRENT EVENTS:
The White Buffalo
The New & Improved WHOLE EARTH CATALOG

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UP AND COMING SPECIAL REPORTS:

The Pathwork Lectures Of Eva Pierrakos
What They Are, What They Teach, And Where They Can Be Found

The NHNE Composite Earth Changes Map

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QUOTABLES:
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STRANGE NEW THINGS

"At first people refuse to believe that a strange new thing can be done. Then they begin to hope it can be done. Then they see it can be done. Then it is done and all the world wonders why it was not done centuries ago."

---Frances Hodgson Burnett

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LETTERS TO & FROM NHNE:
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So what do you think about what we are doing? Here a few excerpts from your letters.

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GHOSTS & FALSE PROPHETS

"Dear friend,

"I took time to read your letter. I hope you will take time to read mine.

"Why are people so anxious to discover some new spiritual insights when the Bible has already laid it all out for us? .... If you really want to study something amazing, study the Bible! It is God's infallible Word to us. It has never failed and never will! Yet people insist on looking elsewhere because if they look to the Bible they will have to live according to God's standards and morals. They will have to be accountable to their creator! They will have to recognize and surrender to Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. It seems people would rather live how they want, chase "ghosts" and "false prophets" and risk eternal separation from truth! Wow! That's a big price to pay! How important is truth to you?"

---Pastor Mike

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ABOUT OUR ACIM REPORT

"I can't tell you how very very much I love getting you newsletter. I really can't wait to see something there from you. I was overjoyed this week to see the COURSE IN MIRACLES so well reported on."

"I took it (the NHNE ACIM Report) last night to my Course meeting and every body wanted a copy of it. One person volunteered to make copies for every one and bring it back to our next meeting. Some who are not now on America Online are thinking about joining so they can get the newsletter, too."

---Marie

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ABOUT OUR SCALLION REPORT

"Thanks for the Scallion report. I had never heard of him, as I watch so little television. The warning flags went up all over when you quote him as referring to the earth's 'new vibrations.' I propose that any New Age types who talk about 'vibrations' be required to instantly describe/demonstrate what in the heck they mean. Thanks for your objectivity in describing both Scallion and the Cayce material."

---LM

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CYBERSPACE UPDATE:
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What is the real meaning behind the multitudes running off to buy the hottest new computer and then leaping, by the hundreds of thousands, online? Is humanity, as a whole, being compelled by some unseen force to come together after eons of clinging to separate niches on planet earth? Is the collective consciousness of mankind finally pulling itself together? Is some kind of mass awakening presently underway?

We think so. And here are a few comments from a few other online trail blazers.

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A NERVOUS SYSTEM OVER OUR ENTIRE CULTURE

"With the Internet, we're forming a nervous system over our entire culture. There's never been anything like it.

"Q. Will this buffer zone make us more or less human?

"A. That's very hard to answer. The same question can be asked about the telephone. Has the telephone made us more humane? Better people?

"Q. Will the Internet help us feel closer to one another?

"A. Another hypothetical. I imagine it might. The Internet will certainly forge different connections between people that otherwise wouldn't have existed--connections based on other than mere proximity. But will this ennoble us? Those kind of questions put me in mind of Robert Axelrod's experiments in modeling societies on computer. Whatever new, nice thing you put in is often countered by something not so nice. In fact, the answer to almost any question you can ask about the Internet is that it's all probably more complicated than 'good' and 'bad.'"

---From an interview with Douglas Adams, author of HITCH-HIKER'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY, that appeared in the December 1994 issue of NETGUIDE magazine

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WE ARE ALL HERE TOGETHER

"Imagine yourself exploring. You walk for days through hot steamy jungles, you climb over rocky hills and through canyons; you drag yourself across an endless arid plain until, one day, you look at the horizon and see what looks like a city. As you approach, you see that it is not really a city but--whatever it is--it is vast beyond description: More buildings, vehicles, works of art, and so on, than you have ever seen or even imagined.

"You spend many hours exploring, always finding something new, something challenging, and something delightful. Being a stranger, you feel confused and, much of the time you find yourself wandering haphazardly. Once in a while you see a bit of a pattern and, for an instant, you make some sense out of the immediate neighborhood. But for the most part, you wander from place to place in a cloud of distraction and fascination. What makes it all so frustrating is that you get the feeling that everything you see is part of something very large that you just can't understand...

"You will notice that wherever you go, you will never see another person. However, you can talk to other people whenever you want, so you will never be lonely. No matter who you are, no matter how individual your desires and your preferences, there are people just like you here, somewhere.

"So where are you? Nobody really knows. The important thing is that we are all here together. We are all connected. We all share. We belong, especially those of us who have nowhere else to go. And the best thing is that you can come here whenever you want. No one is ever turned away."

---From the introduction to THE INTERNET YELLOW PAGES, by Harley Hahn and Rick Stout

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SPACIOUS IN THEIR THINKING

"Cyberspace is, by and large, occupied by people who are internationally minded... they are literate, well-read and, for the most part, spacious in their thinking."

---John Anderson, 1980 independent candidate for U.S. President

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HEY, WELCOME TO REALITY

"I'll tell you, if the government tries to step in and regulate the Internet, there will be a new Internet tomorrow. The freedom on those wires is so great, and people enjoy it so much, that if the government said: "You can't do this or that," or "We're stepping in," I would personally start the next Internet. I would lob a line from New York to Washington. I absolutely would. That's what it's about. I understand that all of this is really scary to the government. But, hey, welcome to reality."

---Adam Curry, host of MTV's highest-rated program, THE TOP 20 COUNTDOWN.

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INFORMATION IS THE TRUE CURRENCY OF DEMOCRACY

"Rather than be the passive subjects of surveillance, citizens are using the Internet and other networks to place the government and corporations under greater scrutiny and to organize on a wide range of issues."

"Information is the true currency of democracy."

"In my view, the most important information resources on the Internet are not stored in digital formats on a hard disk, but reside in the minds of the citizens who exchange electronic mail. When hundreds, thousands or even hundreds of thousands of persons organize themselves in forums to debate important public issues, they bring together vast amounts of specialized expertise and information, creating synergies that are more powerful and useful than the most sophisticated database systems."

---Ralph Nader

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Unless noted otherwise, the above quotes were taken from articles that appeared in the December 1994 issue of NETGUIDE magazine, a magazine dedicated to covering online services and the Internet.

NETGUIDE
600 Community Drive
Manhasset, New York 11030

E-mail: mail@netguide.cmp.com
Telephone: (516) 562-5000
Fax: (516) 562-7406

Subscription Price: $22.97 A Year For 12 Issues

---DS

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INTERNET TERRORIST TACTICS (BAKED CATS ANYONE?)

One more NETGUIDE excerpt. An article called, "Oh, The Places You'll Go," by David Fielder, described several unusually interesting people and places on the Internet. Included along with his brief tour was also a description of how some mischievous folks disrupt the passionate, and often heart-felt, interests of others.

"Their methods consist of military-style reconnaissance, the insertion of spies followed by flame wars.

"So how exactly does this work?

"First they decide which newsgroup to invade (like the cat group). Then they send their spies in. The spies pretend to be cat lovers and talk about feeding problems, getting other people to comment. To start the fun off, one of the spies will calmly ask, for instance, for a recipe for roast cat, because his cat died and he doesn't want it to go to waste. The real cat people get all excited and say nasty things to the spy. That's the signal for the other spies to act: Some defend the first spy, some pick fights with the defenders and so on.

"By the time the (infiltrators) are done, virtually all the conversations on the newsgroup are among the spies--everyone else is so disgusted that they drop out. If you're a member of one of these invaded groups, the feeling is almost exactly as if a bunch of savage horsemen had come riding into your front yard!"

---DS
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THE INTERNET LIBERATION FRONT
& OTHER INTERNET HACKERS

Electronic bombings. That's the way TIME MAGAZINE (December 12, 1994) described what is taking place in some corners of the information super highway. In two celebrated cases, a pair of publicity-hungry lawyers flooded more than 5,000 Usenet newsgroups with an unsolicited promotional mailing. In response, the lawyers received a tidal wave of angry E-mail which knocked them off the Net. A few years earlier a single ''worm'' program, designed by a Cornell student to explore the network, multiplied out of control and brought hundreds of computer systems to a standstill.

More recently, a couple of journalists from Long Island, experienced another electronic bombing. The reporters, who write about computers--and hackers--had their Internet mailbox stuffed with thousands of unwanted pieces of email, which ended up severing their Internet access. In order to send the letter bomb, someone, operating by remote control, broke into computers at IBM, Sprint and a small Internet service provider called the Pipeline. They seized command of the machines at the ''root'' level and installed a program that fired off E-mail messages every few seconds.

But that wasn't all. The electronic bomb also contained a message that railed against ''capitalist pig'' corporations and accused those companies of turning the Internet into an ''overflowing cesspool of greed.'' Something called the Internet Liberation Front claimed responsibility and issued this warning: ''Just a friendly warning corporate America; we have already stolen your proprietary source code. We have already pillaged your million dollar research data. And if you would like to avoid financial ruin, get the (expletive deleted) out of Dodge. Happy Thanksgiving Day turkeys.''

Is the I.L.F. for real? No one knows. But what is known is that the Internet, and many other computer networks, are uncomfortably vulnerable to such attacks. The computer networks are, according to the TIME article assaulted on a daily basis by hordes of hackers trying to break into military, corporate, and private computer systems. Passwords, keys, alarms and other devices are used to lock these intruders out. But such precautions aren't foolproof, nor are the best security systems available to smaller, less sophisticated shoe-string operations.

Another problem is the Internet itself. It was built to be an open and cooperative system. Obviously, a system designed to allow the free exchange of information and resources is more susceptible to sabotage than a system that is closed, highly centralized and guarded to the hilt.

Meanwhile, in Britain, another hacker made headlines by breaking into Britain's major telecommunications company, BT. The hacker grabbed telephone numbers and addresses for secret defense installations, counter-intelligence personnel and details about a U.S. communications center at Menwith Hill, northern England. He (or she) also got a hold of the private lines for the prime minister's London residence, Buckingham Palace, Princess Diana's home Kensington Palace and information about a bunker the government would use in a nuclear war--AND SENT THE INFORMATION OUT TO MILLIONS OF PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET!

Some computer experts believe that this is the highest computer security breach ever experienced by Britain. And what's worse, it didn't require a great deal of technical know-how or special clearance. A reporter covering the story in Britain was able to get a temporary job at BT and easily duplicated the fiasco by using the passwords of permanent staff members.

---Time Magazine, Reuters (DS)

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DREAMS, VISIONS & REVELATIONS:
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"All dreams are worth remembering. It is not a question of having those more worth remembering. It is a question of becoming aware of what the dreams you are having are saying to you; for they all have their GREAT significance. For the soul and the Creative Forces would not bother to communicate with thee such things (if they were only) trivia." (49-2 )

---From the book, " Season of Changes, Ways of Response"

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AN INTRODUCTION TO DREAM WORK
By Wesley Ray Wyatt

What can dreams offer you? How can you decipher their seemingly bizarre, often difficult to understand content? The following article attempts to touch lightly on this complex and yet rewarding field of endeavor. If the following information seems a bit simplistic that's because it is! Dreams can be wondrously direct and contain clear messages or they may be incredibly complex and cryptic. I hope I can at least tantalize you into reading and researching this arena which has so much to offer. For those of you who desire a more in depth look at dreams, check out the recommended reading list at the end of this article.

WHAT DREAMS HAVE TO OFFER

To begin with, dreams are almost always talking about parts of our self. Admittedly it may be a repressed or untapped side of us but nonetheless it is much closer to our true needs, wants and desires than any external source of information. Truly the greatest gift our dreams have to offer us is their intimate awareness of who we truly are. They can offer insight into our inner self, our external relationships and reality. They can provide the necessary vision for problem solving. They may draw our attention to opportunities that the conscious mind is overlooking. And let's not forget their ability to simply give us perspective--that precious viewpoint that lies outside of knee-jerk emotional reactions. Last, but not least, they can tip us off to potential danger in external as well as internal situations such as our physical or emotional health.

RECALLING AND RECORDING DREAMS

A good way to start recalling and recording your dreams is to get an empty notebook or journal with pen and small flashlight to put beside your bed. You will then need to make a decision that your life can handle giving up 20 minutes before bed and upon awakening to massage your dream life. Don't underestimate the difficulty involved here. This is "prime time" we're talking about. No one likes to mess with their sleep patterns. But in the beginning you will have to give your dreams priority. Why? Because you have to overcome years of mental conditioning that either you don't dream or that dreams have no value. Rarely does anyone in this western culture escape these two conditioned attitudes.

Before bed it is extremely helpful to jot down the day's events and more importantly, the feelings, thoughts and perceptions that occurred with them. Any strong emotions should be noted and when they were felt. In the morning when you awaken (preferably by awakening yourself 20 minutes before your usual time), you need to lie in bed and ask yourself, "Where was I? What was I just doing? With whom?" Do you recall any strong emotions? Write down whatever comes. Of special importance is that you write down not just the symbols or events but also what you felt and thought about specific events and actions in the dreams.

Don't expect immediate success. You have likely spent years telling the dreaming part of yourself that it is worthless as well as forcing it to stay out of view. You will have to spend some time letting your dreaming self know that you're seriously interested in a friendship before this aspect of the self will crack the closet door.

Let's say you work on establishing a relationship with your dreaming self and then,three weeks later, you awaken at 6 AM with a bunch of bizarre and crazy dream images that your conscious mind would rather forget. Maybe the imagery is violent, downright kinky or weird, maybe strange and disjointed. Relax. This is to be expected.

Your dreams are tossing the gauntlet down. A test of your intent. Will you be turned off by these seemingly incoherent or unsettling dreams? Too much to stomach? Too hard to understand? Hang in there and write all of it down, both symbols and emotions. Prove to yourself and your dreams that you have an open mind. Withhold judgment on the content. After all, you will be practicing this attitude for the rest of your life if you really intend to become friends with this aspect of the self.

UNDERSTANDING AND INTERPRETING DREAMS

Now that you are beginning to remember your dreams, the next step will be to begin to work with their content. And in order to work with their content, you'll need to understand a little bit about symbolism.

Symbolism is the use of words, things, thoughts or feelings, people or events, to represent something else. Symbolism is a simple way for the inner self to encapsulate a lot of information. Every symbol in your dreams is like a computer disk loaded with information that you have created.

Symbolism is a language used by all of us, but often not consciously. In reality it is the universal language that crosses all cultural, national and ethnic barriers. Generally those who work with dreams divide symbolism into three specific areas: Universal or archetypal symbolism; Cultural, national, or group symbolism; and personal symbolism.

UNIVERSAL OR ARCHETYPAL SYMBOLISM

Universal or archetypal symbolism is symbolism that all of humanity holds in common. Symbols such as the moon, stars, earth, sky, sun and water. Also, themes relating to male and female, anger and love, sex and violence, etc. Jungian psychology has done alot of pioneering work in this field.

CULTURAL, NATIONAL, OR GROUP SYMBOLISM

The next level of symbolism relates to our culture, nation or the group of people we have been influenced by. Images or symbols such as the American flag or dollar bill would fit this.

PERSONAL SYMBOLISM

The third level is personal symbolism. This symbolism involves a specific association or meaning relative to your personal experience. An example would be someone shows up in your dreams that evokes certain thoughts and feelings or attitudes. Because our experiences are different from one another, the same dream symbol will mean different things for each of us. In other words, if the same individual showed up in each of our dreams that individual would represent something entirely different to each of us.

So how do all these different symbolic levels work together? First of all, they overlay and weave together into a complicated tapestry. The problem with most dream dictionary books is that they ascribe specific meanings to specific symbols as though those symbols exist in an unchanging vacuum. They don't. They exist as a direct out picturing of content relative to our changing attitudes, experiences and the events in our particular life. Dreams and their symbolism are alive as we are. Our personal experience exerts a profound influence on their meaning.

Take for example the universal symbolism of the sun as a source of warmth and nurturing. Add to that a personal experience of traveling across the desert without water and suddenly our personal experience alters the universal symbolism of the sun as a giver of life to one of danger and discomfort. What is even more cryptic is that both associations may have a specific application for the individual dreaming the dream. For example, maybe the dream is offering a double perspective on a situation. The individual is viewing his attitudes of fear and discomfort about a situation and overlooking the gift being offered of learning new skills.

Dreams are also ever-responsive and changing. They are alive and able to respond to our lives in both wonderful and, yes, sometimes frustrating ways. What a symbol meant yesterday may mean something totally different today. They offer us the gift of being challenged to recreate ourselves daily. To gain new perspective and understanding.

WHY DREAMS SPEAK IN SYMBOLS

Why do dreams disguise their content in symbolism? I believe there are a multitude of reasons. But for starters, the content is hidden to protect our frail conscious self from unresolved feelings, issues and content it cannot or is unwilling to confront head on. Herein lies another gift. If we can bring ourselves to a place of frank honesty and courage about any area of our life our dreams can provide us with insight far beyond the best counselor.

If you have the necessary desire and integrity to see the reality of a situation, either internal or external, then your dreams can unveil what was previously hidden from view. But your desire and willingness must be sincere. For often dreams would unveil what lies hidden in ourselves or in a situation that would be difficult to face. Dreams can and will become less cryptic and the content or message less hidden as we are willing to truly see and deal with what is going on.

They will get "intimate" with us and reveal their messages if we're willing. And they will act out this intimacy to whatever level we are comfortable with. If you just want a small peak, fine--they'll just unbutton the first two buttons. No scars in view, just a few moles. No shocking nudity just a few bare facts and the rest remains concealed until you are ready for deeper intimacy with yourself, or with a particular situation.

Now that we understand a little bit about dream symbols and symbolism, the next step is to see what our dreams are trying to tell us.

STEP ONE: IDENTIFYING THE EMOTIONAL CONTENT

The best place to start is to look for the emotions contained in the dream. What did you feel? Joy and exhilaration or fear and anxiety? If you had several "fragments," see if there is an emotion that was felt in each. At any rate, take each of these emotions and look back at your conscious life. Have you felt such emotion the day before, or recently? If so, about what, in what setting, with whom?

This is your first clue. A clue that will tip you off that, yes, the dream does have an applicable meaning to your life. It is not random. It is not simply bizarre or coincidental. It has content and information hidden from view.

STEP TWO: IDENTIFYING THE ACTION
AND COMING UP WITH AN OVERVIEW

The second step is to identify the main action in the dream. Describe in 10 to 20 words or less what the action was. Leave out any symbolism. " I was feeling relaxed in a situation I usually feel uncomfortable in." Or, "I was with friends being pursued by something we couldn't see but which scared all of us."

Take this short statement of action or theme and ask yourself, "Is there anywhere in my life that I have been experiencing this or feeling like this?" Check all areas of your life, your relationship with friends, family, husband or wife, children or work. If the dream is lengthy you can do this for each paragraph. See if each paragraph repeats a message or theme.

STEP THREE: DECIPHERING THE SYMBOLS

The third step is to decipher the symbols. The symbols will generally provide the details, the subtle insights and meanings that flesh out the true issues the dream is trying to speak to.

Pick several symbols that seem to be the most prominent and appeal to you the most. Ask yourself what each symbol reminds you of? Do you like it or dislike it and why. What associations or memories does it conjure up? Write down whatever comes to mind.

Do this for each symbol you have picked. If the symbol is a person then ask yourself about your feelings or thoughts toward this person. If it is an inanimate object, what does the object do, what is its function or use (i.e. a hammer: used to drive in nails by force)? If you have little or no background in symbolism I would highly recommend you check out the reference list at the end of this article to gather some more information on symbolism.

STEP FOUR: PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER
AND APPLYING WHAT YOU'VE LEARNED

The next step is to gather your insights and information from the previous steps into a general idea about what you think the dream is about and to then decide on a way to use the information in a way beneficial to you according to the ideals you hold.
What do I mean by ideals? I mean the inner measure each of us uses to decide on a course of action. Does it serve the best and highest within us? Is it an action that will better you or aid someone else? If it does not offer the gift of self development and service beware. One would be cautioned about using dreams to initiate actions that serve only ones self-interest with no sensitivity to the impact your actions have on others. In my experience dreams have an uncanny ability to take into consideration the needs of all in a situation. They do not offer insights simply to give me a leg up on someone else or to act out revenge or violence.

Once a plan of action or application of the dreams information is made you will need to come back to the dream later and ask yourself if your actions seem to bear fruit. Good fruit. If the actions taken have led to further confusion, problems or general havoc you had better take another look.

IN SUMMARY

You now have a short overview of dreams and one very simplified way to work them. Please keep in mind the subject of dreams and dreaming is a vast topic. There are many different approaches to working with dreams. Many approaches utilize journaling, drawing and more creative ways of interacting with dream symbols and content (like play acting). There is a tremendous amount of other information relative to dreaming such as ones beliefs and attitudes toward dreams, waking reality and ones inner life. The resources and information available on dreams has undergone tremendous growth in the past 10 years. Aside from the simple ideas I have presented in this article, the main advice I would offer for those of you who are just beginning to work with your dreams, is to find a dream group you feel good about. Many have been formed with a Jungian oriented focus and can be found by speaking with a Jungian analyst in your area. Others can be found through metaphysical groups, self-help groups and new age information clearinghouses, i.e. your local new age bookstore, health food store and coop. But keep in mind, you, and you alone, are the best one to understand and apply your dreams. Books and resources like this article only point the way...

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RECOMMENDED READING & AND RESOURCES:

MAN AND HIS SYMBOLS
By Carl Jung
Published By Doubleday
Provides excellent information on archetypes, symbolism and general themes relative to dreaming. Carl Jung's other books are also excellent.

WHERE PEOPLE FLY AND WATER RUNS UPHILL
By Jeremy Taylor
Published By Warner Books
Wonderful stories of the practical uses of dreams and impact they've had on individuals and groups. Highly recommended.

SEASON OF CHANGES, WAYS OF RESPONSE
Compiled by Robert Foote, based on the psychic readings of the Asscociations of the Light Morning
Published By The Association of the Light Morning
8471 Autumn Lane
Copperhill, Va. 24071
Of particular interest is Chapter 9: Learning to Use the Basic Tools (of Prayer, Meditation and Dreams)

DREAMS & VISIONQUESTS
By David Sunfellow
David's book reduces the complex world of dreams and visionquests to the bare essentials. Included in his book are: 12 Techniques For Recalling Dreams; A Few Techniques For Interpreting Dreams; Dream Incubations and VisionQuests; Common Dream Pitfalls and How To Avoid Them. Dreams & Visionquests also includes a series of exceptionally informative quotes about dreams, spiritual guidance, relationships and the spiritual path.

WWW: http://www.sedona.net/nen/nhne

WORKING WITH DREAMS
By Montague Ullman and Nan Zimmerman
Published by Delacorte
Excellent for those interested in dream work within a group.

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Wesley Ray Wyatt has 20 years of experience working with dreams. Along with giving lectures, teaching workshops and starting several dream study groups, Wes has also written a pamphlet on dreams called, GUIDANCE THROUGH DREAMS. If you would like to receive a copy of Wes's dream pamphlet and/or simply talk to him about your dreams, or dreams in general, you can reach him on America Online at: WESLEYRW.

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JESUS:
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The following article was written by Robert Perry for people on his Course In Miracles mailing list. Although we, at NHNE, do not promote any particular spiritual path or teaching, I felt there were so many excellent points in Robert's article that I wanted to share it with all of you. Those of you who are Course students will, no doubt, be thrilled, while those of you are not Course students may still find Robert's Course-based Christmas perspective inspiring.

---DS

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THE REAL MEANING OF CHRISTMAS
(ACCORDING TO A COURSE IN MIRACLES)
By Robert Perry

What does Christmas mean anyway? For many of us, the mythology has dropped away. In a scientific age, we may question the Virgin Birth and other miraculous events. Along with many modern scholars, we may question the story of angels, Wise Men and shepherds. For some of us, Christmas used to mean something, before we left our childhood religion behind. For others, it never meant anything in the first place.

Does A COURSE IN MIRACLES provide any way to recover a sense of meaning around Christmas? The Course actually has a great deal to say about Christmas. It does so by using the metaphor of Christmas to describe the birth of a holy relationship. Perhaps, then, if we examine what the Course says about the holy relationship we can discover the true meaning of Christmas.

At first, there is the special relationship. Two people are locked in fear and conflict, chaos and suffering. The long story of their interaction seems to have no meaning, as conflict repeatedly intrudes on their attempts to maintain safety and control.

Then, a moment unlike all others occurs, a moment not of them. A moment not of time. They could never have planned this moment or arranged it. But somehow they allow it to happen. In that instant, the memories, the grievances, the accumulated mistrust, and all the certainties of who the other is, are suspended. In that instant, all is still. The conflict, the noise, the ongoing war stops. The guns are stilled. And something from above is born, something of God.

That moment is what the Course calls a holy instant. In that holy instant, Christ is born deep inside their relationship. And in that deep place, the relationship is healed by His presence.

This Christ is merely an infant, "a tiny newcomer, dependent on the holiness of your relationship to let Him live" (Text, p. 437; T­p;22.I.8:7). Yet He is what guides the relationship to its new goal. For the conscious part of the relationship remains unhealed, just as before. Yet in the holy instant it was given a new goal, the goal of sharing God's holiness. And the "tiny newcomer" will be the One that leads it there.

Slowly, the relationship will grow up under His guidance. And as it does, so will the infant Christ "which nestles quietly in the safety of your relationship...grow into a mighty force for God..." (Text, p. 390; T-19.IV(C).9:2).

Eventually, the Christ will extend through the two people to reach the world. He will give them a special function, a service to humanity they can fulfill together. And as they perform this ministry, He will be in their hands, their voice, their eyes. He will walk the earth again through them and perform His ministry. Yet everything that He will do, which includes leading the world to God, was somehow contained in that original holy instant.

This story has special significance in relation to the Course, because this is its own story. The story of the birth of the Course is the story of the birth of Jesus once again into our world.

Helen Schucman and Bill Thetford begin in a typical special relationship, filled with anger and conflict. Then a holy instant occurs. In a moment unlike all others, they agree to find a better way together. Everything turns on that moment, a moment which the Course praises and embellishes repeatedly over the space of 6 chapters in the Text. In that moment, something is born into their relationship which will change their lives and the lives of countless others forever.

This "something" soon makes itself known as Helen begins to have a series of inner visions and psychic episodes, experiences which prefigure some significant event to come. And then, after several months, this "something" begins to dictate A COURSE IN MIRACLES through her. Now it becomes apparent what exactly was born into their relationship. It was Jesus himself, appearing once again to the world to save us from our illusions.

This "tiny newcomer," this voice that Helen hears in her mind, guides her and Bill to write a book, a book which can serve as Jesus' voice in the world. And as each copy of this book goes out­p;­p;now over a million of them­p;­p;so too does he go out to once again carry on his ministry in the world.

A COURSE IN MIRACLES, then, is a modern Christmas story. Helen played the role of Mary, the mother of Jesus; Bill took the role of Joseph. And Helen and Bill's original holy instant playedthe role of the first Christmas. This line of thought is confirmed by Jesus, who called Helen "Mother" and "the one who gave me birth," and told her the following about the appearance of the Course: "You do not understand what happened, nor the signs that still surround His birth. The star is there, and all attempts to call it something else will slip away in time....The Child has come, and has been born again" (Absence from Felicity, p. 397).

Thus, in A COURSE IN MIRACLES Jesus has been born again to a world so desperately in need of his light: "Here is the babe of Bethlehem reborn. And everyone who gives him shelter will follow him, not to the cross, but to the resurrection and the life" (Text, p. 390; T­p;19.IV(C).10:8).

Now we can get back to the first Christmas. By adapting ideas and passages about the holy relationship and by using what the Course says about the significance of the life of Jesus for our world, I will present what I believe Christmas means.

The world itself is the special relationship into which Jesus came. And it IS a battlefield, seething with conflict, hatred, and death. Its battle has been raging since time immemorial, rising and falling, but never abating; rampaging through homes, streets, stores, fields, over the seas and even in the skies, despite all our best efforts to curb the violence and maintain the peace.

Yet one silent, holy night, for a moment, it all ceased. As Edgar Cayce said, "And all the rabble and all the jeers of a world were stopped." Who knows what actually happened that night, but somewhere in the world, somewhere apart from all the noise of battle, there was stillness. And in that stillness there occurred "the birth of holiness into this world."

This is the one line in which the Course describes the meaning of Christmas, and that line speaks volumes. In full, it says, "In this season (Christmas) which celebrates the birth of holiness into this world, join with me who decided for holiness for you" (Text, p. 386; T­p;15.III.7:1). The meaning is clear: Jesus decided for holiness for the whole world. Somehow in his decision for God, we all decided. His entry into the earth therefore WAS the birth of holiness into this world.

The first Christmas, then, was a planetary holy instant, in which holiness was born once and for all into the global special relationship. In that holy instant, our collective journey was forever changed. The Christ Presence entered our world at some deep level and healed it. All of the casualties of the global battle, "the broken bodies and the shattered limbs, the screaming dying and the silent dead, [were] gently lifted up and comforted" (Text, p. 535; T­p;27.V.3:4).

True, the conscious patterns of our world were unchanged. The world went on just as before; the endless battle barely paused. But unbeknownst to us, in that holy instant the whole goal of life on earth had been "abruptly shifted to the exact opposite of what it was" (Text, p. 337; T­p;17.V.2:6). Before we had pursued the goal of sin. But now we had allowed in the goal of holiness. And from its home, submerged deep in the collective psyche, holiness would inevitably rise up and someday replace all of the world's battles with the golden silence of God's peace.

Who else could lead us to this goal but the "tiny newcomer," the child through which this goal was born? For in that child was contained, as in a seed, all of the holiness the world would someday attain, and all the means for its accomplishment. "In its tiny hands it holds, in perfectsafety, every miracle you will perform, held out to you" (Text, p. 390; T­p;19.IV(C).10:4). Though seemingly small and frail, this child contained not only the promise of his adult accomplishments but also the promise of humanity's awakening.

But as yet it is just a promise. The child must grow up. Therefore, "The infancy of [global] salvation is carefully guarded by love, preserved from every thought that would attack it, and quietly made ready to fulfill the mighty task for which it was given you" (Text, p. 390; T-19.IV(C).9:4). As Jesus grows up the holiness that entered at his birth finds an opening through which it can flow out into the world. It pours out through his words and through his deeds. And in his final act it is fully released, and leaps beyond the body, beyond locality, to reach the entire world.

This is what his followers experience. Though they see him no more, they feel his abiding presence, guiding them, comforting them, electrifying them. They are set on fire with love and become absolutely fearless. Thus, as their movement sweeps the known world, it bears witness to the new sun in the skies of humanity, the new Spirit in the collective mind. However misguided they were, however much their B.C. mindsets distorted this Spirit's pure impulse, they were being carried along by the winds of a new spiritual climate. They were the harbingers of humanity's awakening, an awakening which, unbeknownst to the rest of the world, had on some deep level already occurred.

The Spirit of Jesus that guided them is still abroad in the world today, guiding us to the goal which he planted in us so many centuries ago. He is still with us, inspiring little Christmases wherever there are open minds, just as he did with Helen and Bill. For as he told them: "My task is not completed until I have lifted every voice with mine" (Text, p. 240; T­p;13.VII.17:2). Therefore, he will continue to shepherd us until the whole world follows him, "not to the cross, but to the resurrection and the life" (Text, p. 390; T­p;19.IV(C).10:8).

Yet even when we reach the final moment of our collective journey, when all hands are joined as the world is shined away in light, we can remember that this moment was born on the first Christmas. In that ancient planetary holy instant was contained the whole reversal of the sad saga of human history. In that tiny infant lay the end of the world and the guarantee that all of us would reach that end and pass beyond it to unlimited life in God. Though the birth happened quietly and out of the way, though few knew of it and the world went on as before, in that cave, or stable, or whatever, the global peace treaty was signed. And it is just taking a very long time for all of the soldiers to get the news.

Therefore, if we had been one of the few who were physically present on that silent, holy night­p;­p;perhaps a shepherd or a midwife­p;­p;we would have been able to open our eyes the next morning, walk out into the fresh air, look at the bright new day and say with a deep exultation in our heart: "What is here begun will grow in life and strength and hope, until the world is still an instant and forgets all that the dream of sin had made of it" (Manual, p. 87; C-E.4:6).

If you would like more information about Robert and his Course work, you visit THE CIRCLE OF ATONEMENT web site:
http://www.sedona.net/nen/circleofa

Or write: circleofa@sedona.net

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GORDON-MICHAEL SCALLION UPDATE:
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We just received Gordon-Michael Scallion's December 1994 newsletter and there are several interesting pieces of information to report on.

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A NEW CALIFORNIA / NEVADA VOLCANO?!

In our November 11, 1994 Special Report on Gordon-Michael Scallion's predictions, we mentioned that one of his early warning signs that the break-up of California was imminent would be the birth of a new volcano "in the Sierra Nevada near the Nevada-California border."

The current issue of Scallion's newsletter, THE EARTH CHANGES REPORT, carries an extraordinary story about what may be a volcano being born! According to the ECR story, which reportedly draws its information from scientists, USGS chemists, forest service personnel, and the San Diego Union-Tribune, the soil near Mammoth Mountain (located in the eastern part of the Sierra Nevada) is exhaling carbon dioxide mixed with radioactive radon gas. Both gases are associated with volcanic activity. The emissions are so strong that as many as 30 ACRES OF TREES are dead or dying at one sight alone. Two other sights, each measuring about one acre in size, are also experiencing the same phenomena. Bill Evans, a USGS chemist who is quoted in the article, indicated that this was the only instance he knew of, anywhere in the world, where cold, dry CO2 has come out of the soil and killed trees.

Some scientists believe that the poisonous gases are coming from magma moving slowly closer to the surface, possibly only seven miles beneath the surface. Mammoth Mountain sits on a rim that was created by a volcanic explosion some 730,000 years ago. The eruption that took place then blew rock fragments as far away as Idaho! The last time this area erupted was 550 years ago. Since there has been no volcanic activity in the area in recent years, scientists are unsure whether the poisonous emissions herald volcanic activity or not.

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OMINOUS RUMBLINGS NEAR MEXICO CITY

Another one of Scallion's early warning signs was that Mexico City would experience a major earthquake (in the vicinity of 9 on the Richter Scale) prior to the California super-mega activity. Drawing upon Associated Press stories, the current issue of ECR reports that a volcano only 42 miles from Mexico City has begun spewing gases and experiencing 20 quakes a day.

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EUROPEAN EARTH CHANGES

We all know that America may be on the verge of catastrophic change, but what about the rest of the world? Does Scallion foresee the same kind of massive upheavals for other parts of the world?

In his most recent newsletter, Scallion lists an ominous string of predictions for England, Spain, Germany, Ireland, France, Italy, Switzerland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, The Netherlands, Belgium, Iceland, the former Soviet Union, Poland, Turkey, Bulgaria and Rumania. Generally, Scallion is predicting that 50% OF EUROPE, from the Mediterranean Sea north to the Baltic Sea, SHALL COLLAPSE. Elevations below 300 feet sea level will be inundated by the sea. According to Scallion these events will take place in a matter of minutes. "Europe is to go beneath the sea as in a twinkling of an eye." The United Kingdom, France, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, The Netherlands, Belgium, Bulgaria and Rumania will loose a great deal of their land mass, while Iceland and Greenland will grow and eventually merge.

Significantly, Scallion is also predicting that low frequency sound waves, caused by magma movement and tectonic strain, will permeate the Polish/Turkey area. These sound waves will cause people to be unusually susceptible to the astral worlds, causing something akin to possession. According to Scallion, these imbalances will help instigate a great Holy War which will be born in this region of the world.

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SCALLION EARTH CHANGES HOTLINE NUMBER

For those of you interested in finding out what the latest natural disasters around the world are, you can call GORDON-MICHAEL SCALLION'S EARTH CHANGES HOTLINE NUMBER: (900) 903-2745. Based on information from national weather and earthquake tracking services, their list is updated weekly, every Wednesday. The cost is .95 a minute. The estimated cost per call is between $1.95 and $2.85. You must be over 18 to call.

---DS

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CURRENT EVENTS:
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THE WHITE BUFFALO

Although many of you have probably already heard this story, we wanted to be sure none of you missed it.

An extremely rare white buffalo named "Miracle", was born August 20, 1994 at a small farm in Janesville, Wisconsin. News of the white buffalo's birth spread like wild-fire among Native American tribes, who regard the white buffalo as a sacred and apocalyptic symbol. The Cheyenne, Sioux, and other tribes of the Plains, believe the white buffalo's appearance is a sign that the time has finally come for the four colors (or races)--the black, red, yellow and white--to unite. Over 100 representatives of Native American tribes have visited the buffalo, many of them performing rituals and hanging ceremonial objects nearby.

Some Native Americans have been expecting the Buffalo to be born since 1933-34 and regard it in much the same way that Christians regard the Second Coming of Christ. Native Americans, and others, from all parts of the country and world have been flocking to the small Wisconsin farm to see, and honor, the buffalo. According to Floyd Hand, a 55-year-old Lakota Sioux medicine man, "We're going to pray for healing of nations. We're going to pray for healing of the Earth. And we're going to be one heart, one mind and one spirit."

Although white in color, the buffalo is not an albino. Dave Heider, the farmer who owns the calf, says he has no plans to sell it even though he has had "substantial" offers.

---The Associated Press, The Chicago Tribune, The Minneapolis Star Tribune (DS)

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THE NEW & IMPROVED WHOLE EARTH CATALOG

Although the seemingly contradictory lifestyles of returning to nature versus going high tech have been fighting for some time now, a newly published catalog is putting a new spin on the whole debate.

In 1968, THE WHOLE EARTH CATALOG appeared and, to a large degree, helped inspire the back-to-the-land movement of the late 60's and early 70's. It encouraged people to become self-sufficient and supplied them with names, addresses, information, inspiration and products that could help them.

Now, however, a new version of that old standby has appeared. Called THE MILLENNIUM WHOLE EARTH CATALOG (Harper Collins, $30.00), the new catalog moves away from its earlier back-to-nature focus and, instead, is embracing the idea that real human growth lies not in returning to the past (or even creating a "sustainable" culture in the present), but, instead, in moving into the high tech world of global communications.

According to Howard Rheingold, the editor of the new version, "The huge sales for bogus books like THE CELESTINE PROPHECY and MUTANT MESSAGE furnish evidence that there is an immense spiritual disaffection among Americans. These new-agey spiritual solutions are band-aids. We provide the real medicine."

What real medicine? Helping people learn to use the new communication technologies that are rapidly appearing all over the planet. And although the catalog's focus has changed, it is continuing to emphasize two archetypal constants: Give the power to the little guy and "if something doesn't work (like the radical back-to-nature movement of the 60's and 70's)... try something else."

---U.S. News & World Report, November 14, 1994 (DS)

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