Whole Life Magazine

June/July 2014

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Page 29 of 43

art & soul BOOKS The Sufi Path of Annihilation In the Tradition of Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi & Hasan Lutfï Shushud Simone Wright R eaders of this book should be prepared to set aside any ideas they have about intuition being a right-brain en- deavor, a specifi cally female strength or an extrasensory perception. According to Simone Wright, intuition is a whole- body function available to everyone, and it's very much ground- ed in the senses. Anyone who's experienced goosebumps or neck hairs standing on end will fi nd the section "Our Biological Brilliance" fascinating. It explains, for example, that the skin operates as an information processing center much as the brain does— perceiving things before we're consciously aware, then com- municating it to us physically. It also explains the physiological origins of the phrase "gut feeling"—the gut actually houses the enteric nervous system, whose 100 million neurons make it a sort of brain in its own right. In fact, Wright says the gut is one of the three main intel- ligence systems that are especially receptive to higher guid- ance—the other two being the actual brain and the heart—but that ultimately, "every cell in our body is capable of powerful levels of intuitive communication." She backs this up with re- search into the reactions of plants to external stimuli, the con- scious alteration of human DNA, and physicists' understand- ing of the unifi ed fi eld, reminding us that both Albert Einstein and Max Planck believed in a matrix of intelligence at the foun- dation of everything. Wright's intention is to train the public to be more receptive to the wisdom in that matrix by becoming aware of the physical sen- sations within our own "trilateral intelligence system." Police departments have hired her to not only help solve cases, but also to teach law enforcement personnel to develop their own intuition. Here, she takes the exercises she's developed to a wider audience, offering a primer on the mechanics of intuition, and a handbook on refi ning your skills and applying them in life-improving ways. First Intelligence invites you to not be- come just a problem solver, but be a creative genius in your own life. (New World Library) —Vanessa Finney Nevit O. Ergin N evit O. Ergin mingles his cryptic contemporary Sufi short stories with sayings of master Hasan Lutfï Shushud and the immortal verses of Rumi to reveal the barest essence of the Itlak Sufi path. Our perceptions are based on a lifetime's accumulation of conditioned habit, primarily in eating and breathing, we learn. Manipulation of these two functions through fasting and zikr (breath/control), along with a steady, slow acknowledgement of life's suffering and illusion, brings release from dualistic perception, annihilation of the self, and revelation of essence beyond God—that "we are the beloved; God is the lover." Dualistic perception can be an obstacle to Itlak's deep and slippery truth. Such mysteries require an oblique and indirect approach to revoke the placebos of religion and philosophy. We can only approach our truest nature and meaning through annihilation of even those institutions that intend to guide us. Prepare to grapple with your most basic assumptions in this sweet, simple and completely annihilating adventure. Like much mid- eastern religion and mysticism, Itlak Sufi sm seems couched in suffering and denial. However, the goal— nothingness, absence— transcends any such negation. With annihilation of the self, essence expresses its hidden eternal being, allowing one to "die before one's chronological death," or die to the illusory world. Otherwise, as Rumi notes, we are just "a morsel for the ground." (Inner Traditions) —Mac Graham First Intelligence Using the Science & Spirit of Intuition 30 wholelifetimesmagazine.com WLT-JUN-JULY-26.indd 30 5/26/14 2:10 PM

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