Tag Archives: New Author

Miracles Happen Everyday!

About one year ago, my wife, Debbie, decided to take her niece, Kim, who was visiting from the northeast, on a drive to the coast of Southern California. Besides doing some shopping, they also planned to spread Girls at beach1some ashes, the remains of Kim’s mother who had died months earlier, upon the waves of Laguna Beach. Linda was my wife’s elder sister. She was found alone at her home, unconscious due to a sudden stroke. She died a few days later.

The drive along the coast highway took them through a series of picturesque, beach communities. The mood was peaceful, the journey relaxing as well as scenic. At one point, though, they found themselves waiting at an intersection for a stoplight to change. The cross street to the right was an immediate climb up a steep hill and to the left a short descent leading down to the beach. Everything seemed perfectly normal.

They were stopped in the right hand lane next to one car to their immediate left and another in an adjacent left turn lane. As soon as the traffic light changed from red to green, both of the cars to the left of Debbie and Kim proceeded into the intersection. But Debbie’s car would not move forward. No matter how hard she pressed on the accelerator, the car wouldn’t budge. Something was preventing it from moving forward.

All at once, a large, black SUV appeared, barreling into the intersection downhill from the right. The driver of the SUV never slowed, appearing to have either been distracted or lost the ability to brake. The SUV struck the side of the car that had been waiting beside Debbie and Kim, forcing it sideways to then smash into the car waiting to make its left turn. As they witness the trauma of the accident unfold before them, their car was released, and Debbie and Kim were allowed to proceed on their way.

My wife drives a small, economy car, most of which lies well below the bumper of a typical SUV. If they had been allowed to continue unhindered, Kim would have most certainly lost her life, as the SUV would have struck her at eye level first. As they drove way, both Debbie and Kim knew immediately that the power guiding their lives had revealed itself to them directly.


Afterward, while perusing the boutiques of Laguna Beach, Debbie and Kim met a woman who ran a tiny shop downtown. She introduced herself and then shocked both of them by informing them that they were there to spread ashes at the beach! Taken aback by such a surprising comment, they both thought to themselves, How did she know? How did she know? When I heard this, I knew I needed to find out more.

Months later, I went to meet the woman who ran the tiny shop. I really wanted to find out what she could tell me about me! But I found nothing unusual about her and instead went away considering the day to be quite uneventful. I forgot all about her until a week later when I noticed a small business card sitting on the counter in our kitchen. It was a card my wife had taken from the tiny shop owned by the mysterious woman.

The night before I found the business card, and after struggling for many months, I had finally come up with the book’s title, The Primal Contradiction. And as I looked down at the business card, I realized the name on the card was derived from the same words I had chosen for my title. The mysterious woman from Laguna Beach was the one who actually gave me the title for my book.

Happiness: Is it Real only when Shared?

The Primal Contradiction

I suppose before attempting to explore a claim such as this, I should try to describe my own interpretation of what happiness means to me. It is, after all, an internalized Happy Boy2sensation, quite personal to every one of us. And although we can more or less agree that happiness has a positive effect on the quality of our lives, we have widely varying experiences from which we draw our memories and interpretations of what it truly means to each of us.

For me, the intensity of happiness that I experience correlates with the degree of peace I am given to feel in both heart and mind. It is an expression of self-awareness free of any self-centered interests, a veritable consciousness of the immeasurable depths of oneness. It is the blessing received when we find ourselves neither here nor there, the birthplace of imagination and creativity, and the exclusion of the rational, calculative mind. An ardent emotion absent of worldly concerns, happiness is the spiritual gift we find during meditation.

But I also know very well the sensation of happiness resulting from interacting with other people, the wonderful feeling of elation created when our spiritual energy is shared Meditation3with one another. By joining with others in this way, the very essence of our existence has a tremendously positive impact on us all. We bond together in the presence of the divine. Extending ourselves in this way, we create an energy exchange that is far greater than what one person could ever accomplish alone.

If I say that in my own experience, happiness is most real to me when I am alone, I must immediately contradict myself because I know that I am never truly alone, even when isolated from those who share their lives with me. During those precious moments spent in meditation, I often feel the presence of others, friends that have either gone before me or have simply chosen to help me when I might need them. Their dispassionate yet spot-on messages are sometimes quite clear.

The sense of affinity granted by a spiritual friend in this way has so often produced such profound peace within me that I have come to realize true happiness lies beyond the life we Sunset6know today and that we are merely given a taste of what happiness really is. Thinking that we are alone simply because we are isolated from others may seem perfectly normal to us. We are often taught that this is absolutely so—that we are distinctly different, separated from each other because of our individuality. But what if this claim is only a half-truth?

Perhaps we are nothing more than separate human beings, going about our personal business day after day; but what about the essence of our spiritual awareness? Is this just an ethereal idea
considered unimportant when compared to the claim we place upon our individual humanness? Aren’t we also spiritual beings capable of joining with one another… any time we wish?

From the moment we begin to perceive our role in this world, it seems that we are encouraged to cultivate an individual human identity rather than rediscover the shared spiritual oneness we have always had with one another. We are taught to become specialized as individuals, to stand out from the crowd, and to forget the fact that as spiritual beings, we need never be apart. We are shown precisely how to nurture separateness within our own minds and ultimately contradict the commonality of our spiritual nature.

We are indeed faced with a contradiction the moment we choose separateness over wholeness—a primal contradiction. When we deny that we are all part of an omnipresent divinity, we begin to forget the natural spiritual bond we share with each other.

Meditation: The Gift of Life

The Primal Contradiction

It was the morning after. The life-changing ordeal I described in the chapter, And Then I Die from my book, The Primal Contradiction was over. As soon as I awakened, I couldn’t help noticing how brightly the morning sun shone through the window of my room. I remember that everything before me was utterly clear. The sensation of now gripped me—my awareness was empty.

Sunrise6I had no thoughts at all; in fact, my old ways of evaluating the world had ceased entirely. There was an attitude of newness glowing from everywhere around me. I took it all in with such a feeling of genuine gratitude that I now knew where I would be going, that I was being shown at that very moment exactly what I would need to pursue today and tomorrow. Giddy with an effervescence of energy, I had become silent for the first time in my life.

A confidence was instilled within me. The sensation of being all in one place, all at one time kept reassuring me that everything was going to be different now, that I would be rising above the seemingly unchangeable conception of my old self and saying goodbye to the mundane way of life that I had held so dear for so long. For the first time, I could afford to relax completely, knowing I would never again need to be enslaved by the interminable ways of thinking that I had known all my life.

Before that morning, I had read only a little bit about meditation. I knew what was meant by the general idea but never took any of it seriously or understood what the actual experience entailed.

Without really knowing much of anything about the discipline, I began to practice meditation. I wanted to enhance the energy bursting from within, to grow Meditaion1toward the direction I knew my life was now heading. It didn’t seem to matter where I was or what I was doing; my thoughts remained few and far between. And as my level of awareness grew, I realized that there was no longer a reason to indulge in the self-centered stream of cerebral dialogue I had known so well for such a long time. Consequently, I learned how to consciously silence my unwelcome mental ramblings whenever they occurred.

I practiced Hatha Yoga postures and exercises that I saw others performing and began to devote a significant amount of time attempting to unify body and mind, to bring about further spiritual transformation within my self. I began reading esoteric texts, those that would elicit the receptive state of mind I now wanted. Without even realizing it, the manner of thinking I had known since I was a child began to disappear from my memory. The mundaneness and boredom, which had permeated my life for as long as I could remember, became something that I no longer knew. I was set free.

Excerpt from the Chapter: And Then I Die

The Primal Contradiction

For the next several hours, everything I feared to tell anyone would be repeatedly and completely brought forth to my consciousness. I was absolutely terrified, constantly beside Child in the darkmyself with fear, knowing I would be losing control over my mind for the duration of the night. Never in my life would I know fear so intimately and be consumed by it so frequently in such a short amount of time. And after several hours of experiencing more of the same castigation that was dealt to me the night before, I became desperate to bring the ordeal to an end. I just couldn’t go on with it anymore.

Eventually, I drove back to the neighborhood where we both lived. Desperate to find a way out of my own madness, I turned the wheels of the car back and forth, driving up and down the familiar streets near my home, going nowhere in particular and not knowing what I should do. I had no idea what would be ultimately happening to me, as the sensation of falling unconscious began to rivet all of my attention. I began seeing stars in my field of vision as I felt consciousness slipping away, not from exhaustion but instead from absolute desperation. It never occurred to me that I may have actually been dying, but it quickly became imperative that I somehow stop the feeling that my life was coming to an end. I was screaming out, foaming at the mouth as I was made to remember the absolute worst image of myself that I knew; I was certain that I was on the brink of losing my mind.

Man in blacklightIt was at this point, after several hours of verbal and nonverbal bashing that Mark finally voiced one concern for me. He blurted out, “It’s okay, Danny … you just did something when you were really stoned.” In the next moment, my mind was forced to return over and over to the image of precisely what he was referring to. I had no defense whatsoever. He could see in perfect detail everything I hated about myself. After driving only a couple blocks more, I had to park the car. My vision had turned dark. I couldn’t see any longer and was becoming hyperventilated, about to lose consciousness. I pulled the car to the side of the road and stopped. The sensation of fainting continued as my awareness slipped away. I let go of the steering wheel and slumped over.

I recall losing consciousness for only a few seconds, and then gradually, I became aware of my surroundings…

The Memoir brought to print

When I began writing, I had no idea what I would ultimately be doing with my completed manuscript. I spent no time planning for the future and instead either wrote or edited whenever I could. Consequently, several months passed by before I even began to investigate what the next steps might possibly be. Somehow, I knew that I had to just keep on writing. I just kept my attention focused on the task at hand, the new manner of self-expression that I had been granted.

Agraduation-1311224pproximately thirteen years prior to beginning The Primal Contradiction, I was given the opportunity to return to school in order to finish college and obtain a bachelor’s degree. While I was there, I quickly learned that I enjoyed writing immensely and that my instructors recognized the aptitude growing within me.

Over the next few years, I spent nearly all of my days off from my current job writing papers for school, eventually earning a Bachelor of Science in Business & Management. It truly was a special time in my life that I will always treasure and never forget. But unfortunately, I was unable to transform what I had learned into any kind of meaningful purpose—not until many years later when I realized that I needed to begin the process of writing a book.

Although the ideas and memories that came to me while working on the manuscript seemed to be originating from somewhere outside of me, I readily took them in and really enjoyed transferring them to paper. It was a challenge that I never shied away from. I never lost the initial excitement that I had found when I began. I was able to write the bulk of the story down in just over four months but definitely needed to spend the following year making the whole thing more readable.

Soon, I began to inquire and then understood exactly what I would need to do with the
completed manuscript. The information I found was quite pointed—little hope, if any, was granted to the first-time-attachment-2-1240615writer. Finding someone who would consider taking on a new author was described as being nearly impossible. But I began sending letters to literary agents anyway, perhaps a hundred or more over the next few months. Not one recipient showed any interest. The majority did not reply.

I read about self-publishing and found there were other alternatives available to me, so I decided to pay for the privilege of being an author. The whole process was quite organized and completed in a timely manner. In effect, the process of having a book brought to production in this way simply entailed pre-paying for all that was provided. I was given some amount of control, and I was also quite pleased with the overall results. I never really knew how much I wanted to write a book until I was able to open up and turn the pages of my own.

The origins of a memoir

Until the day before I actually began working onThe Primal Contradiction”, I had never in my life thought seriously about sitting down and writing a book.

I was supposed to tell my story in this way, describing everything about my search for the truth.

I was supposed to tell my story in this way, describing everything about my search for the truth.

The immensity of such a project seemed unattainable to me, well beyond anything I believed I was even capable of. Early in the morning on that day, however, I earnestly asked for help, for a way to be lifted from the everydayness of the mundane existence I seemed trapped in, neither knowing the reason why nor having the faintest inkling of what the answer might be that I was searching for. And then, all at once, I clearly perceived the message unfold within my awareness.

I knew my direction had been pointed out to me and that, along the way, others’ perceptions would need to be considered before my own. I was supposed to tell my story in this way, describing everything about my search for the truth. Consequently, I knew that I would be doing exactly what I had always wanted yet feared to do: reveal exactly what had happened to me more than thirty-five years ago.

As a young boy, I grew up believing that my observations were sound, that interpretations and classifications were important. I was overflowing with personal opinions, committed to upholding a system that I employed to evaluate everything that was experienced in life. However, at one point when I was a young adult, the hard-and-fast manner in which I had always perceived was suddenly and completely transformed by a power I had never known of before. All of my condescending thoughts and behaviors came to an abrupt end, and the powerfully deceptive preoccupation with self-will allowed me to go free.

Stripped of the familiar, predictable pattern of thinking that I had always known, I was abruptly suffused with a sense of awareness so foreign that I was forced to find a way to exist in a world I had previously not known. I had to let go of nearly everything I believed was true about human nature and adopt a new position from which to view the world. Almost immediately afterward, I began learning a way to be, discovering a method of living that alleviated the painful affliction of self-centered arrogance along with its devastating compulsions of prideful disdain and indignation.

Because of having lived through such episodes of personal transformation so long ago, I was ultimately able to see the truth about myself and finally did realize that I needed to share some of these extraordinary stories with others—perhaps even provide new understanding or grant a measure of insight to another. When I began writing, a mysterious, intense power subsequently pulled me through each of the chapters, enabling me to remember circumstances that I had forgotten long ago while encouraging me to maintain my focus as well as follow its direction. All along the way, it helped me to weave through the labyrinth of memories and recall the specific details that precisely describe the experiences garnered during a significant portion of my lifetime.