Omniperception book excerpt about Manifest Destiny Spiritual Focus Weekend


Excerpt from OmniPerception by Stephen Hawley Martin


The weekend retreats that are held by the School take place about a half mile away from the main building at what’s known as the Moon Valley Ranch, a charming hundred year old clapboard house with large rooms and a covered front porch made of stone. The ten attendees of the Dharma weekend, plus Dr. Laurel, who was to lead the session, and Christine, who was to help her, would sleep at the ranch. After Friday night’s clam chowder in a bread bowl, we’d take meals there as well. Between eating and sleeping we would learn about and discuss our particular reasons for incarnating this time around. p.17

...About seven o’clock Friday evening, the attendees, Dr. Laurel, Christine, and Dr. Dan who is chancellor of the School, all gathered in the living room. We sat in a large circle and each of us told the others about ourselves. Dr. Dan, who was tall and sim but with the beginnings of a tummy that made me think of the Buddha, sat in a straight back dining room chair with his legs crossed at the ankles. He announced that he would be attending the session as one of us so that he’d know firsthand what this weekend was like. Two other attendees were chiropractors, one male and the other female. Another was the owner of a music store who’d just opened an audio and video recording studio. There was an equipment repairman for McDonald’s restaurants, a former non commissioned officer who a few months prior had retired from the Air Force, a young man with a graphic arts background who was a partner in an ad agency, a grandmother, an office worker and manager, and myself--a novelist, marketing communications consultant, former ad agency owner and father of four. It seemed fairly certain that by the end of the weekend we’d all know a lot more about one another.

Then Dr. Laurel shared some background about Dharma. She said it was a Sanskrit word meaning “statute” or “law.” Dharma is the law that orders the universe and the essential nature of function of a person or a thing. It is what we have to give or share with others. Even though a person may be good at something, he isn’t fulfilling his Dharma if he’s primarily after acclaim or money. People who are using their Dharma in the most productive ways tend to be humble. Which is not to say they don’t or won’t receive acclaim. Many do, but they’re likely to feel the acclaim isn’t really deserved because they so thoroughly enjoy what they do and it comes so naturally to them.

“It’s your soul’s urge,” she continued. “When you are responding to your Dharma, you feel at peace. Someday, after you grow old and look back at life, you will regard the time you spent putting your Dharma to work as the golden years. This is because people who are using their Dharma are passionate about what they do, as though it were a flame burning in them. They lose track of time. They’re in the flow. And something else. Each person applies his or her Dharma in a way that is unique as though each of use is one piece of a giant jigsaw puzzle and we fit together to make up a whole.”

...”It’s as though there are many shades and hues.” She opened a notebook. “Here are some of the Dharmas we’ve turned up so far:

“Vision--the ability to see probable futures and how things are connected and use this ability in a leadership capacity.

“Synthesis--in this case, identifying needs people have and seeing how to fulfill them with the resources at hand.
“Joy--the ability to bring joy into the lives of others.

“Comprehension--in this case, the ability to see how things fit together. The person who has this was trained as a naturalist and now leads nature walks, explaining to people how nature and the ecosystem work together.

“Compassion--the ability to give comfort to others who may be going through a difficult time.

“Magnetism or charisma--the person who has this uses it to help raise money for charity.

“Others include patience, wholeness, hope, faith and resilience.”

“What is your Dharma?” I asked.

“Mine is discernment,” she said. “It’s my nature to want to know the truth and to try to lead others to it as well. Sometimes people feel uneasy with me because I ask so many questions. I used to wonder why I felt compelled to do so, and now I know. It’s my attempt to thoroughly understand a person’s situation and to help them understand it.”


...It was gray and cool, rain gently falling. Dr. Laurel had us sit with our backs straight, feet squarely on the floor. We took deep breaths and envisioned the light of our being, first as a glowing ball in our solar plexus. We allowed the ball to grow to encompass our entire bodies, then expand outward to fill the universe.

I felt at peace as I went inward and became aware of the sound of the rain dripping from the leaves of the trees, striking the tin roof of the porch. I was reminded of the home I grew up in. This was reinforced by insects singing. The sounds of crickets filled my ears. Birds chimed in as if they were celebrating the rain and the breaking of the drought. A cow mooed in the distance. These were the sound of Life. A cool, gentle breeze caressed my face. The wind was Life. I was Life.

...At ten o’clock the event I’d been waiting for arrived. We gathered in the living room. A table and chairs were set up for Dr. Dan and Dr. Barbara. Two tape recorder were cued up. Dr. Dan talked Dr. Barbara into a hypnotic trance and the Dharma readings began.

Dr. Dan called on us one at a time, and one at a time we took a seat in front of Dr. Barbara who sat in large wing chair with her eyes closed.

Several of the attendees preceded me. The grandmother’s Dharma was “caring.” She had an ability to see what really mattered in a situation and to deliver just the right care. And the office manager for whom it was “devotion.” She could become strongly devoted to a person or a cause, but was cautioned to be sure the person or cause was worthy. Last before me was the male chiropractor. His was synchronicity. He was able to understand how things were connected.

Then it was my turn, I felt butterflies in my stomach as I took my seat.

Dr. Dan turned to Dr. Barbara and said, “You will search for the identity of the entity referred to as Stephen Hawley Martin and relate this one’s Dharma from the past and past lifetimes in general.”

She paused as though witing for a computer file to boot up, then said in a kind of sing-song monotone:

“This would most easily be described as omni-perception. There is a very strong urge within this one to interpret that which this one sees. We see that there is a great deal of reliance upon experience but it is from a more distant place rather than involvement in it (the experience), and we see that this is in an effort to explore and to develop this perception and to answer the urge for it (perception). We see that there have been many time periods where this one has been in positions to be perceptive. There have been instances where this one has been the eyes and ears of kings. (There was a pause here and a fumbling for words as if she could not believe what she was now seeing or receiving. Then she continued) This one spent an entire lifetime living in a crow’s nest where the entire endeavor was to be able to hone and develop the perception, not only physically but in an otherworldly sense as well. There have been many experiences like these that have been building a complete understanding of perception in its omniscient expression. And we see that this one has the ability to see anything from many different points of view. This one has the capacity, therefore, to be able to recognize a whole picture or a whole image where only a fragment is available. This is a very developed and sharpened intuitive sense where this one is capable of experiencing more in a metaphysical sense than what the physical experience itself would allow. Therefore, it is easy for this one to move beyond the limitations of the physical when this one is entrained with the inner mind and with this Dharma. This is all.”

...Dr. Dan said, “What is the relevance of this one’s Dharma to the present lifetime?” Dr. Barbara answered:

“This one has chosen in the present the conditions whereby there can be the freedom to experience any desire, and many of these have been acted upon, affording this one the availability to experience the omniscience of the perception, and this has brought this one a greater sense of wealth in its true sense. The movement forward would be in the disseminating through interaction of the perception that this one does have. This one has a profound ability as a teacher and a counselor that it would serve this one well to develop.”

...Frankly, I was stunned. I’d been aware of my ability to “connect the dots” as I’d called it many times. It was how I got through life. What Dr. Barbara described dovetailed with my speculation that “vision,” “discernment” or “comprehension” might be my Dharma. But I hadn’t fully realized what this ability truly was, nor had I comprehended the extent to which this, this omni-perception, had been developed. It would take a while to absorb this information and to understand the implications.

One thing was apparent from my reading as well as from the other reading I’d just heard. Dharma is not a gift. It is a skill that has been developed over lifetimes.

Imagine spending one in a crow’s nest...

–from OmniPerception: Tapping Your Power to See All by Stephen Hawley Martin
published by Oaklea Press, 6912 Three Chopt Road, Suite B, Richmond, Virginia 23226

Stephen Hawley Martin's other books include The Mt. Pelee Redemption, Death in Advertising, Past Fear & Doubt to Amazing Abundance, and For the Good of Those who Love Him. His articles have appeared in Thresholds Quarterly and this book Omni Perception arose from the Manifest Destiny weekend he spent in 2001 at the College of Metaphysics.

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