Friday, March 30, 2012

Past Lives & Phobias: a Theory

from MONAD 12.21.12 The Awakening of Stella Steinar

"He placed the long, thin needle meticulously on the tray with the other sterilized instruments.  It had to be at least a foot long.  I tried to look away, think of something else.  I was about to die.  Again.  It wasn’t the first time—and it wouldn’t be the last.  A new life was waiting for me.  I was faced with many uncertainties.  There were only two things that I was certain of. 
My name will always be Stella.
And my fate will always be the same."

Whether you’re a believer or not, and for the sake of this exercise, let’s just assume for a moment that past lives are real and that you’ve lived many, many lives before this one.  Come on, humor me and play along. 

Now, follow me as I derail to another topic: phobias.  Not the obvious kind of phobia that results from a bad childhood trauma, but the unexplainable kind, its origin peculiar and unknown.  Aha!  You see where I’m going with this, right?  No?  Well, let me explain a little further and I promise it will make sense.  

I have a theory.  I’ll choose a generic, common phobia as an example—acrophobia, a fear of heights.  When you break it down, the phobia ultimately manifests as a fear of death—that the risk of being high above the ground will result in an accident, a slip or fall or some other freak way of plunging helplessly downward to your untimely demise.  You don’t know why, when, or how you developed this primal fear—you’ve never fallen like this before and obviously you’re alive now, so it didn’t originate in this lifetime.  So perhaps you fell to your death in a previous life.  You with me so far?

This idea is not original, by any means.  Many have explored and treated phobias based on this very thought process.  But I’ve got something else to add here.  Something for you to ponder, and it might just save you time and money spent in hypnosis and regression therapy sessions, or it may simply allow you to enjoy life a little more—phobia free.

My theory is this:  Stella Steinar is unique (and fictional!).  The chances of dying the same death you’ve already experienced in a past life must be…astronomical!  It would be a pointless step in our soul’s evolution.  So, even though you may harbor this wretched fear of heights (or whatever it may be), you can rest assured it won’t be how you actually die this time around.  Voila!  You see?  You’ve been wasting precious time, fretting over the wrong things! 

So as you climb that ridge and shudder at the thought of peeking over the edge of the cliff, the beads of sweat forming on your brow while your heart pounds like a locomotive in your breast, remind yourself, “This is not how I am destined to leave this earth.”  It may put things into perspective and allow you to appreciate the view.

But beware!  It will be the thing you expect the least, the thing you don’t fear, that will creep up on you when Death comes knocking on your door.  Does this mean we should start to fear everything?  That we can avoid death by abusing the theory?  “Oh, I’m afraid of…today, so conveniently, I won’t die.”  Sorry, Charlie.  It doesn’t work like that.  My theory only applies to real phobias.  Faking is not possible and either is immortality.

What I’m saying is, it’s plausible to overcome your fears if you try this advice.  Recite this mantra the next time you find yourself catatonic, unable to pry your white-knuckled grip from the railing six floors up:  “I recognize that I have this ridiculous phobia, that it’s always been with me even though I don’t understand it.  I have it because I may have died this way in a past life.  But this is a new life and it’s not how I am meant to leave this earth today.”  Good luck!

T. Anderson has not personally tested the theory
described above and assumes no responsibility for the
safety of those who attempt it.  This theory was written purely
for entertainment purposes only.  Use at your own risk.

What kind of phobias do you have?  Funny, weird, obscure, bizarre?

Do you believe your phobia is the result of a past life experience?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

365 Days of Truth: Day 46 : Contributing guest author, Alison DeLuca

The Truth about the London Evacuation Program

My father and his sister grew up in London in the late thirties. They lived in a small row home with their parents, an Irish laborer and a countrywoman from the North. The family was desperately poor, but they were happy enough, and my dad won a scholarship to go to a real school, in order to learn a “proper” English accent. In those days, no one with a Cockney accent got a banker’s job or became a gentleman.

All of that changed when the bombings and air raids started. Houses were turned to rubble overnight. Families were wiped out.

In order to prevent the worst atrocities, the government came up with a program to get children out of the city and into the country during summer of 1938, away from the worst of the air raids. In their defense, the people who came up with the evacuation program were acting in good faith. And for some children, perhaps the great evacuation was fine.

But the program was put into place so quickly, and for so many people, that at times it was very disorganized. Nearly a million and a half people were “displaced.”

Children were put onto trains by parents who had no idea where their kids would end up. Brothers and sisters were split up. Country towns that were told to expect two hundred children received nearly a thousand.

For my father, being an evac was disastrous. The people who took him in considered him to be a “dirty Cockney.” He was put out of the house each morning and not allowed back in until the evening.

With nowhere to go, he used to sit in the church every day. The vicar noticed him, a small boy in the back pew who stayed after everyone else went home. The man began to talk to him, and later my dad became a preacher himself.

In the interests of truth, I must say that my father never was able to speak of any of this. I only learned the truth myself a few weeks ago. And I’d love to say that he became a strong, fine person after that experience, but he didn’t. After all that privation, once he returned to normal life he looked at life as a banquet, and one that he was unable to stop himself from sampling. Food, wine, women – he was simply unable to resist any of them. Now, at last, I can understand why.

I’ve used the evac experience in my current work in progress, “The Gramophone Society.” I want to imagine what children went through after being displaced. As I am a steampunk author, I’ve added in fictitious elements. Still, I do want to confront what the great evactuation program was and wasn’t.

That is coming from a position of truth, after all. 

Alison Deluca is a unique author of steampunk fiction.  She and her books can be found at the following links:  

Watch the video book trailer for the Night Watchman Express!

*Many thanks to Alison for taking time to write this post for my 365 Days of Truth blog.  If you can't find what you're looking for or have further questions, please feel free to contact us.  --T. Anderson

*You can find a post called 'I am a Creator' that I wrote for Alison's blog here:  Fresh Pot of Tea

Monday, March 12, 2012

My Guest Post for Carrie Nyman's Blog

Carrie Nyman, author of 'Why Aren't You Sweet Like Me?' and contributor to my 365 Days of Truth project graciously asked me to write a guest blog post on the topic of "setting" for her blog.  I decided to discuss setting in fiction and some different ways it can be used to benefit fictional storytelling, using examples and quotes from my book.  You can read my post, Creative Use of Setting in Fiction, by clicking this link to Carrie's blog.  I'd love to hear what you think!

--T. Anderson

Saturday, March 10, 2012

365 Days of Truth: Day 32

365 Days of Truth: Nothing is more powerful than an idea  -Guest post by author, Carrie Nyman

In a world where the importance of the individual seems paramount, it is refreshing when a cause pulls us from the comfort of our own heads and helps us consider others before ourselves, to appreciate the suffering of others so that we can help. The KONY 2012  campaign that has brought international attention to a Ugandan murderer also brings attention to the Invisible Children charity, but whether or not you agree with the legitimacy of this organization or its cause does not matter (after all, Invisible Children itself confirms that Kony and the LRA has not been active in Uganda since 2006). The important thing is that thanks to social networking, a 30 minute YouTube video has garnered the modern world's attention. This idea is powerful and if you haven't seen it, it's worth your time:

Yes, it's true that liking a Facebook status will not change the world, but it can change how we approach the world and repositions our focus from our little part of the world to those who do not have the power to speak for themselves.

-Carrie Nyman 

Author of Why Aren't You Sweet Like Me?
(historical fiction based on a true WWII love story)

Many thanks to Carrie for taking time to participate in my 365 Days of Truth project!  If you'd like more information and are having trouble finding what you're looking for, just send a note and we'll help!
You can find the previous 31 posts about Truth on my Facebook fan page, and if you "like" the page, you'll receive updates through your Facebook feed as I continue my journey for the remaining 333 days!