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Nonduality Salon (/\)

Highlights #343

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SOMETHING DIFFERENT, BY MANCHINE

I listen to what I choose
I see it my way
You can tell me what you will
My world is what it is
As is yours

I speak to me too
Recording, making clear the blur
of focus, organizing it

What does it achieve
All this conversation,
an ordering of the Universe
into something different
than it is
into something different
that suits me

I understand what you say
once I've sat upon the words
compressing them
into something different
than they are
into something different
that suits me

Your words have changed me
don't you see
into something different
than I am
into something different
that suits me

__________________________________________________________

MARK OTTER

Hi All,

Basho says:

The temple bell stops.
But the sound keeps coming
out of the flowers.

Love,Mark

____________________________________________________________

Only an image in the eye of an image.
I can believe myself to be this too.
I can believe this of the whole world.
Of God, of everything.
An image that sees itself.
Why not?
It is an understanding,
an agreement, a binding contract.
The formless bound in form.
Informed... enformed.
Heaven and earth kneaded together like dough.

--Andrew Macnab

_____________________________________________________________

GENE POOLE: Personally, I have no use for the forced
imbalance of the 'status-quo'. This list is a special
place, like a confessional. Just as we each have within us
a rigid 2-yr old tyrant who wants to rule all space, so
also we each have a 'priest-confesssor', who lives for
moments of truth and contrition. By coming clean here, I
learn that it is safe to drop my painfully acquired and
maintained identity.

Nothing bad will happen.

I wish for each, to be able to drop the internal partitions
which somehow keep these facets of self, hidden from
conscious awareness. It is no secret that here, on this
list, those partitions are stressed to and past the
breaking-point. The trick is to participate in such a way
as to not only personally benefit, but to lend this to
others, also.

MELODY ANDERSON: Yes. Internal partitions. That's a very
apt naming of what is at play.

What I was noticing yesterday was that not only do each of
these facets of self lie within, they reside in our
communities, our families, even this mailing list. And that
how fluid (or rigid) these partitions exist *externally*
has a significant impact (if not a mirrored impact) on the
fluidity/rigidity of the *internal* partitions.

How much easier it is to drop the partitions internally,
when one communes with others who are 'fluid' themselves.

We have spoken often here on this list about the impact of
those who abide in a nondual perspective (who are free from
identification or attachment) may have on the greater
community. It has been asked, "What is it we can take from
our gathering here, on this list, and offer out into our
other communities and families?

For me, it is making conscious all the hidden selves, with
their hidden agendas....dropping the partitions as you
say.....which in turn no longer *demands* that those I meet
maintain the image I have assigned them.

As long as the partitions are in place *within*, we will
continue to demand a solid partitioning ....a sharp
defining...of individuals in our lives,

and we may be loathe to open to see them in a different
light.

And so despite any 'realizations' we may have had, we may
continue to erect walls around those we know....continue
labeling others...

and still be unwilling to hear others' expressions outside
the label (and agenda) we have assigned to them.

Thank you, Gene, for expanding this discussion.

GENE POOLE: Gene: I thank you, Melody, for exposing and
sharing the growth you have experienced. Being able to say
it, being able to share it... this shows, that what has
gone before, has been assimilated. Sometimes, food is a bit
hard to chew, and a bit of a challenge to assimilate. Once
had, however, this meal supplies permanent benefits.

I find no shame in laying bare my self; there is something
in this, which makes the baring a truly grand event, no
matter that it may pass without the notice of others. The
swelling of the heart is a true event, even as the pain of
expansion may bring tears.

That others may not understand, be perplexed as they may,
is even more reward; passing beyond former boundaries, we
breath new and fresh air.

No shame, no blame...grist for the mill...

_________________________________________________________ __________________________________________________________

GENE POOLE: I wish for each, to be able to drop the
internal partitions which somehow keep these facets of
self, hidden from conscious awareness. It is no secret that
here, on this list, those partitions are stressed to and
past the breaking-point. The trick is to participate in
such a way as to not only personally benefit, but to lend
this to others, also.

ED ARRONS: Yes...we each become a spokes-person for
unconditional love and enter into a collective resonance-
whence the tyrant tot and the high priest are demised in
the light of purification. We all become children of Mother
Grace.

Perhaps there is yet a resistance to the "ensuing
emptiness" or, in other words, a fear of losing
individuality.

______________________________________________________

GREG GOODE

To say that anything really has a function means it's
something more than an image. Functions and
function-creators are themselves only images. Images are
only images. How can an image function, actually do
something? Any doing is just another image. Images rise and
fall. How can an image make an image?

It sounds like you might be looking for a first cause, an
answer to why there are images in the first place, why is
there something rather than nothing. Any answer "X" that
gets pointed to as a first cause, such as "the brain did
it," will embroil the seeker in endless, useless mind-stuff
-- lots of dead ends, incoherences, endless regresses, or
dogmatic views, etc. This is not fruitful. The true answer
to this question is the non-arising of the question.

_______________________________________________________

MARCIA PAUL

No matter what they are (even these) words are lies even as
they are being spoken. That is because they represent the
moment that just went before and that moment is gone.

Consciousness is divided. There is a conscious level and a
subconscious level. Please suspend judgment for the moment
to catch the drift of what I am trying to express. The
subconscious level is where the motivating factors reside.
I reside most of the time in the conscious level. I feel
numb. I know not what motivates me. I am at the mercy of
feelings which I am unaware of. I am mechanically driven by
life both internal and external. Reactivity rules.

Waking up is a three-fold process. If I can somehow (this
is where the sly man comes in) fall back (behind or
internal to) the reactivity, I can spring (reflexive
movement) to that psychic place we all share and empathy
(the third or reconciling or healing) flows. Somehow I have
to trick (be a sly man to myself) myself in order to access
that subconscious level.

The subconscious level is imbedded in my body. The cells of
my body have memory. They carry the *story*. My conscious
mind is quick with lies also known as rationalizations and
justifications and excuses.

Example. I am sitting meditating as I direct my father
through his shower routine. As I sit aware of the coming a
going of my breath, I become very aware of a feeling of
instinctive disgust. This person is useless, can't do
anything, old, doesn't smell good, I shouldn't have to do
this and so forth. Because I am in my body, memory is
evoked. I experience this disgust as a memory coming from
my mother. My mother, bless her heart, was not a body
person. Body function disgusted her. Suddenly the feeling
of innocence and helplessness being viewed as disgusting
i.e. the experience of being felt as disgusting made me
feel sad for myself and simultaneously I was flooded with
feelings of compassion and sympathy for this helpless old
man. I fell back into the subconscious which reflexed me to
inside my father and I was flooded with empathy
(reconciling force).

First I have to have reactivity. Life has to impinge itself
upon me. Reactive tension is my springboard, my fuel if you
will. All those "me's", little Marcia's, each separate
moment in time are my life. Each is a little tyrant
reigning supreme for one brief moment in time. My
opportunity, my challenge, my gift of life.

_________________________________________________________

TIM GERCHMEZ

Last night on inquiring into the nature of thought, I
realized that thought is *empty*. This is difficult to
explain in words, I think it has to be experienced, but
here is an attempt.

Thought normally is recognized as something that has
*meaning* (in the context of either making sense or not
making sense). Without some sort of recognizable meaning,
there is nothing that can be called thought. Yet the
meaning ascribed to thought is itself a thought... or a
collection of thoughts.

We recognize a thought by its meaning or context. But upon
clearer examination, thoughts can be seen to be *empty* -
because the thought depends on meaning to exist, and
meaning depends on thought to exist. It's a kind of
circular little system that as Dan-ji once said, has no
ground. Look closely, and the whole non-system spins away
into emptiness.

So, to look at (witness) thought without using thought, it
can be seen that thought is like clear glass. It can be
said that it does not even happen - that there is no such
thing. Looking more deeply at the clear glass, there is no
glass there - like a sliding glass door so clean someone
runs into it, but in reverse. The glass is assumed to be
there, but "reach out" and there is empty space.

The conclusion is that where thought was assumed to be,
there is only void, full of Itself. Just look closely, and
you will see that thought is something imagined or
projected out of nothing.

_________________________________________________________

THE LITTLE PEBBLE, by Miguel-Angel Carrasco

In a river high up in the mountains there was a little
pebble, one of those one finds making up the bed of shallow
fast-moving torrents. The pebble, placed near the
riverbank, was all covered up in greenish moss. It felt
miserable, because it had heard other, bigger pebbles speak
of the possibility of becoming stone, which was supposed to
mean the goal of all pebbles, the happy fulfillment of
their destiny. But much as it tried, our pebble couldn't
come to realize this dream. It felt itself made up of moss.
So it spoke to the rock beneath it and said: -Dear rock,
please, tell me how to become stone. -Stone? What do you
think you are? -I'm a piece of moss. -How do you know?
-That's what I see when I look at myself. Moss, all over.
-You fool, that's only a mask! Look deep within yourself
and you will see that you are not that. Moss is only your
dress. If this river were to dry up, the moss would die,
but you would continue to be what you are. -And what am I?
-You're not even a pebble. You are just stone. Immutable,
immortal. -Then what shall I do to reach stonehood? The
other pebbles speak of various techniques, and I've tried
them all, but l still can't stop feeling I am a piece of
moss. -Forget about techniques. All techniques deal only
with the makeup of the moss. Leave the moss alone. What is
it to you? Look at the river around you. The moss you are
wearing adds to its beauty. Where's the need of taking off
your pretty dress? It will eventually die by itself. Just
be happy knowing that your are only stone.

Our little pebble was very happy on hearing the rock say
this; so happy that it began to sing and dance in the
water. This made it forget all about moss. And the more it
sang and danced, the more moss it inadvertently shook off.
When finally all the moss had been shed, it became so light
and smooth that it started to float and shine in the river.

____________________________________________________

SHANKAR (CONTRIBUTED BY GLORIA LEE)

The non-sensual and 'self-shining', vast and complete,
'non-moving' inner experience of 'I-I', is Self-Knowledge:

As 'completeness', as the 'thing' that is the 'I', as that
which shines by Itself, without 'rising' by
sense-perception, That 'Inner (Being)' alone, which is the
(very) 'Nature' of 'all' (everyone), and which is the 'vast
non-moving experience', is the 'Self'; (and) 'this' is
'knowledge'.

Translation of verse 224 from 'Essence of Sadhana' by Sri
Sadhu Om Swamigal

JODY

Great passage Gloria, which pretty much describes the
experience of knowing the Self, at least as I know it.

Having the Self as an 'object' ("as the 'thing' that is the
'I'") makes meditation almost effortless. It is as if the
mind has found a homebase, but it must take its clothes off
to enter.

I just got a Palm Pilot at work. Going back to the Self in
meditation is sort of like plugging in my Palm Pilot to the
HotSync cradle. While there is no transfer going on, the
mind comes to rest in the Self. When it comes time to
navigate the world, the Palm Pilot comes out of the cradle,
ready to do its thing.

_________________________________________________________

HANS: Here's another assumption of mine : if there is a
path, there is a goal, something to achieve. When there's
something to achieve, there's a *me* with all it's
assumptions. This looks like a circle to me. The *me*
creating the goal and the goal recreating and reconfirming
the *me*.

ROGER: Can we distinguish when achievement/path/goal/effort
are useful and when effort is counter productive?

I'll use the body as an example cause it's more obvious.
Say your body is tense. This has direct implications for
the spiritual quest because tension in the body can be
related to tension in the mind. Spontaneous samadhi,
according to various authors and from my own experience, is
more likely when the body is totally relaxed. See recent
posts about the "death pose" being advantagous!

Hypothesis: samadhi is more likely when the body is
relaxed. Observation: the tension in my body keeps the mind
engaged, how to relax? Plan of action: this could include
yoga postures, exercise, diet etc... But lets just say the
plan of action is "if my shoulders are tense and raised,
then let them drop".

Now, this is very simple and useful to me. If it sounds too
simplistic, then consider that relaxation of the body can
be an initial step or trigger, perhaps the only step
required, towards becoming aware of kundalini at anytime or
stilling the mind suddenly & completely.

"If my shoulders are tense and raised, then let them drop".
Now Hans, are you going to avoid this or similar procedures
because of some imagined danger that the process may become
obsessive or circular? Or are you not capable of using the
mind to identify distractions, plan a course of action,
implement that action, and assess the results?

If you say that "not this - not this" doesn't work for you,
and something else works better, then that would seem like
a reasonable assessment.

There's a philosophy held by some that sincere evaluation
of the state of mind & body is not required for
Realization. Some suggest that such effort might actually
block realization. Ha!

HANS: So we strip false assumptions away (which in itself
is nothing but another assumption), but what about the *me*
that is doing the stripping ? The *me* being the ultimate
assumption.

ROGER: What is there after stripping away? Stillness or
alertness or increased focus? How is stillness presumptive?

I'd prefer that you make a distinction here, Hans. If you
say that "stripping away" doesn't work for you, that's
fine. However, if your conclusion is that "not this - not
this" doesn't work for me, then I'll resist you.

__________________________________________________________

THE TRUTH ABOUT THE BRAIN/MIND CONNECTION BY MICHAEL READ

Once there was a monk who was an expert on the Diamond
Sutra, and as books were very valuable in his day, he
carried the only copy in his part of the world on his back.
He was widely sought after for his readings and insight
into the Diamond Sutra, and very successful at propounding
its profundities to not only monks and masters but to the
lay people as well.

Thus the people of that region came to know of the Diamond
Sutra, and as the monk was traveling on a mountain road, he
came upon an old woman selling tea and cakes. The hungry
monk would have loved to refresh himself, but alas, he had
no money. He told the old woman, "I have upon my back a
treasure beyond knowing -- the Diamond Sutra. If you will
give me some tea and cakes, I will tell you of this great
treasure of knowledge."

The old woman knew something of the Diamond Sutra herself,
and proposed her own bargain. She said, "Oh learned monk,
if you will answer a simple question, I will give you tea
and cakes." To this the monk readily agreed. The woman then
said, "When you eat these cakes, are you eating with the
mind of the past, the mind of the present or the mind of
the future?"

No answer occurred to the monk, so he took the pack from
his back and got out the text of the Diamond Sutra, hoping
he could find the answer. As he studied and pondered, the
day grew late and the old woman packed up her things to go
home for the day.

"You are a foolish monk indeed," said the old woman as she
left the hungry monk in his quandary. "You eat the tea and
cakes with your mouth."

HAHAHAH and HOHOHO!

Peace - - Michael

_______________________________________________________

THE QUESTION WAS POSED:

What makes a guru? -------------------------------

MATTHEW FILES: A radiant smile, deep pools of nothingness
for eyes,thick luxoriuos hair( or totally bald will do), a
keen wit,and wry sense of humor,some amount of
eccentricity, though not too extreme if one wants mass
acceptance, a cool air of detachment,alternating with a
passionately gentle warmth and an unbelievable depth of
understanding and languaging of the dharma. The list of
qualities (practice that melting love/bliss gaze every
day!)could go on and on but bottom line it comes down to
great P.R. Without a good Rep the aspiring guru is really
not going to make it in todays highly competitive guru
market. Dress sharp, talk smart and above all get a web
site. Image is everything. Once you have determined what
market you are shooting for all the pieces just fall in
place.Oh and lets not forget a hot name. Something eastern
sounding, either tibetan or hindu is working well with the
public these days.Though "Swami A.C.D.C.Somelongdong" is
probably a bit cumbersome. Thats enough for now. In future
posts i will be covering subjects like,"Developing a
Following","Starting an Ashram","Giving out Spiritual
Names", "Creating an Inner Circle","Leveraging Your
Satsangs","The Myth of Digital Darshans","Guru Getaway
Vacations" (for times when those devotees get to be just
too much),"Death as a Career Move","Titleing Your
Workshops",(like, How I Raised Myself From The Dead In 49
Days Or Less And You Can Too). .........

..........Visualize Whirrled Peas ..........matthew
............matthew

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