Well, I finally met Gary Renard last weekend. I went to his workshop and we went out to eat. Cindy was there too, and she’s just as great as Gary. They are both super nice. Meeting Gary was a long time coming … seeing as I got The Disappearance of the Universe just about right when it was released by Hay House several years ago. It was a pretty amazing, surreal day for me. I was pleased to hear Gary and Cindy play one of my favorite songs, “Sound of Silence” by Simon and Garfunkel. I subtly reference that song–and the last scene from the movie The Graduate–in the second panel on page 86 of my book. Gary is definitely a good guitar player. I sing and play guitar myself, but I’m very half-assed about the guitar playing part, so I haven’t learned to do any fancy picking or fancy chord playing. I use a capo to keep the guitar playing simple.
I always tend to remember things I wanted to talk about after the fact, so I air balled a number of things I had thought of that I wanted to ask Gary. But I at least remembered to ask Gary about his days trading the markets. Gary used to trade markets from home as a way of making a living while The Disappearance of the Universe was in the works. And that is something I’ve done too. It was one of the commonalities between us that helped make me pay extra close attention to The Disappearance of the Universe. Trading helped me make an unconventional living that allowed me the free time to eventually write The Universe Is a Dream. Trading has come with a lot of forgiveness lessons for me. One of which is the fact that, at this point in time, the things I used to trade, mainly commodities, are now too expensive to safely and sanely trade using my old methods…thanks to inflation mostly caused by an overzealous Federal Reserve devaluing the dollar. But like Arten told Gary, trading the trend is the best way to go. And you know what? Commodities are still in an upward trend (except for natural gas, which still stinks). But my days of leveraged investing are behind me for the time being.
One thing Gary brought up to me was that I might want to start going around speaking. And that is certainly something that I will likely start to do in due time. I’m sure I’ll be able to put together a pretty cool, informative show. While I was watching Gary talk, I kept on thinking about how I’d go about presenting material and how I’d answer questions–mainly the question people always ask in many ways: how did the impossible happen? Maybe I’ll just carry a recording of my answer to that question with me and just press play every time that question is asked. (LOL) I’m thinking that I’ll want to finish my second book before I start doing any traveling though. But it is definitely something I’m going to start to psyche myself into doing.
I had a Philly cheese steak sandwich while eating with Gary. And it was good. So, in case you were wondering, I’m not a vegetarian. I heard a tomato scream once as I bit into it. So, that cured me for thinking that eating animals is worse than eating plants. I do think that people who eat meat but couldn’t bring themselves to actual wring the neck of a chicken or butcher a cow shouldn’t eat meat. There are a lot of people who eat meat simply because the killing is done for them and thus the guilt is kept hidden. I say eat whatever you want and eat it without guilt and you can’t go wrong. The fact is, nothing you eat can kill you if you eat it guiltlessly, otherwise you wouldn’t eat it. And speaking of guilt, don’t you think it is weird that people get together to eat but pretty much never get together at the opposite end of the eating cycle? (LOL) It has to do with guilt.
Someone else eating at the restaurant picked up our bill for us. The waiter said that a little bird told him that our bill was covered. So, thanks to the person who was kind enough to do that. I’ve been on a free meals streak lately that started a few weeks ago when I went to pick up a few pizzas and the cashier said just take them, no need to pay. Random acts of kindness are really cool.
So, in summary, it was great finally meeting Gary and Cindy. If you ever get a chance to go to one of Gary’s workshops just do it, even if you have to drive a few hours and gas is $4 a gallon.
My book is up on Gary’s recommended list now. It says, “Gary highly recommends this ‘graphic novel’ about ACIM. It’s good for all ages, but especially helpful for teenagers and young adults who will enjoy the form. Very original.”
I wish more young people were into A Course in Miracles. And I hope my book can help that happen. I never got into ACIM socially until recently because I knew I wasn’t going to find many younger people around my age there. And even though I’m getting less young every day, ACIM is still not something that is full of my peers. The whole drive for me to produce my book came out of a desire to share this stuff with my peers. Now is always the best time to get waking up. When young, it takes a lot of balls to ignore peer pressure (guilt) and march to your own drum, or more accurately the Holy Spirit’s drum. Most people need to spend a lot of time getting burned by following the ego before they start looking for something like ACIM. That wasn’t the case with me though. In high school is when I realized that I’d rather be alienated than pretend that the normal pursuits of life could satisfy me. I could already see through the ego lie. But it took a lot of searching through college until I found ACIM. I contemplated giving up on trying to figure it all out plenty over the years before I found ACIM. The transition reminded me of a song by John Mayer called New Deep where he talks about giving up on “Heavy Things” and just being normal. But then Mayer has a song on the same album called Something’s Missing about how all the normal pursuits in life don’t quite cut it. Some of us are more in tune that something is missing earlier in life than others.
But anyway, that is a subject that I should cover in another post. I should have an announcement about an ebook version of The Universe Is a Dream pretty soon. And I have some other things to post too, like an update on my so-called forgiveness diary I had planned on keeping.
Cindy, Alex, Gary, and the hand of Jeffrey Solomon (but that is another subject)