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Highlights #411

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Tuesday, July 18


CHRISTIANA DURANCZYK

I've just loaded a collection of photos taken at the Diamond
Hill retreat in Providence:

http://www.egroups.com/files/NondualitySalon/Diamond+Hill+retreat+July+2000/

_____________________________________________________________________________


GREG GOODE

As seen from here.

This was a remarkable retreat. A total and effortless
celebration of Love and Self. It was very much an in-person
extension of the activities of NDS and HarshaSatsangh.
There were endless stories and conversations at the
12-person kitchen table. Plus, we had book exchanges, and
few activities in the beautiful Korean zendo which was a
Kwan Yin Hall (Kwan Yin, the Bodhisattva of compassion). It
was right in our building! We had meditations which were
seated, walking, talking, and whirling meditations - all
celebratory. There was salsa dancing, sitting on the
lakefront, walks in the woods, and an outing to eat pizza.

We want to do it again. One of my friends, Michael Rosker
here in NYC, is not a lister, but wants to come along next
time. After hearing about it, he declared that in 15 years
of spiritual activities, he'd never heard of a group outing
with so much grounded love and clarity. Petros might come
down NYC-way to hang with us one of these days, as Petros
and Michael know many of the same people across the
country.

The only lister I had met face-to-face before this
gathering was Christiana. So everyone was brand new, even
Christiana! Here are some capsule description/impressions
as seen from here, of the wonderful and beautiful people at
Diamond Hill. I THINK I got everyone. Please remind me and
forgive me if I forgot anyone. The monk who made our meals
while we were jabbering at the table seemed to smile and
perk up his ears at the conversations.

Andrew - A wry, witty, intelligent sense of humor that is
always kind. With an unerringly accurate ability to sum up
any conversation in fewer than 10 words! Might be a
breatharian, I don't remember seeing him eat anything, even
though he came for pizza with us...

Biff (Glora's husband) - So far, not a post-er to
NDS/Harsha. Razor-sharp intellect, combined with tender
curiosity and an open heart. With salt+pepper hair and
beard, like a wise scientist or a dignified ship's captain.

Christiana - Living, serving compassion combined with
psychic and intuitive and artistic abilities, always there
for any/everyone at every moment. Dances beautifully to
salsa, and likes spicy curly fries.

David - Sweet, tender and selfless, with radiant angelic
energy emanating from his physical form and kindly face. I
wanted to talk to him some more but he had to go home
before Sunday. Posted great driving directions, saving us
from major traffic jams on the drive through Connecticutt.

Gloria - Divine-mother energy, honest and courageous. The
actual backbone of the retreat. Gave us form and direction,
or we'd have sat at the kitchen table aimlessly yakking for
18 hours a day. Brought her sweet husband Biff. She has a
touch of a Southern accent, a beautiful way of drawing out
words, especially as heard with NYC ears!

Harsha (pronounced "HERsha") Our fearless HarshaSatsangh
leader. - Always joyfully celebrating everyone's uniqueness
and special-ness. Impossible to feel bad in his presence.
Likes fruit and tea for breakfast. Much better looking than
Deepak Chopra.

Jerry - Our fearless NDS leader. The guy who, the closer
you look, just isn't there. Always giving everything to
everyone else, like the compliments we give him, and love
and other stuff. Well, everything except those
whipped-cream-filled chocolate Devil Dogs he likes for
breakfast.

Mark - A loving, beating, giving poetic Heart, temporarily
taking the form of a human being. Introduced the Jelly Roll
– not food, but a unique and wonderful way of saying "I
love you" with a lot of feeling and a Zen twist at the end.
I'd never seen it before!

Mary (Mark's wife) - So far, not a post-er to NDS/Harsha.
The most beautiful brown doe eyes, very much at home with
14 people she'd never met. I wanted to talk to her more!

Michael - With a face like Jack Nicholson and a great,
rock-solid, psychic strength, he continuously celebrates
everyone's existence as awareness Itself. If someone has a
belief that they are a this-thing or a that-thing, or if
they have a concept that they are somehow not really OK,
then just hang with Michael for a few seconds... Likes
pizza with hot Italian pepper.

Nora - Vast depths of multi-cultural awareness, a
bibliophile, with a prodigious memory, and a great
navigator with a map. Always had water and fruit for
everyone. Has beautiful children that we all fell in love
with from the photos. Loves Prince Edward Island.

o.h./Indra - Neither old, nor a hag! Beautiful and radiant
with a touch of Southern accent. Because she said she
really has no name that fits, and because of her effortless
way of reflecting what others feel/think/say, I would like
to call her Indra, after the jewels in Indra's Net.

Petros - Tender-hearted, open curiosity, with an
encyclopedic acquaintance with satsang in the Western world
- I wouldn't be surprised if he someday wrote a book on
that phenomenon. I'd buy it! Brought Dunkin Doughnuts for
everyone, and holy water from Ammachi. Hope he comes to NYC
some day.

Victor - Been involved with Tibetan Buddhism in the U.S.
since the 1950's. Falstaffian bearing, looks like Swami
Satchitananda, especially with the robe we made for him out
of a colorful bedsheet. Has the enthusiasm and wonder of an
energetic schoolboy.

*****

After I returned from Diamond Hill on Sunday, I got a
message that my father had passed away on Saturday night.
Actually, right about the time of the salsa dancing. He had
been very ill, often painfully, for 2 years. A few months
ago, I went to see him in Seattle for what I knew would be
the last time. It was a nice meeting, clear, un-encumbered,
loving, spacious.

My family thinks he went peacefully and purposefully when
he did. My mother, a good 50's-style wife and mother who
lived for and through her husband for over half a century,
is taking it hard. But knowing he was at peace gives her
some comfort, and she's learning a bit about how grieving
is done. I spent a lot of time with her on the phone. Our
family is atheist by tradition, but my sister (45 years
old) has a Japanese boyfriend who is introducing her to
Buddhism, and this is helping her. She in turn is helping
my mother.

The lady I am seeing and I are pretty serious, will
probably get engaged soon. Her name is Ann (Yan-Ming).
She's from Canton, above Hong Kong. A few weeks ago, she
had a beautiful Chinese agate and crystal bracelet
custom-made for my mother, with a matching necklace. She
wants to give this to my mother when she meets her. I think
we'll go in December for the holidays. This cheered my mom
up, I think she'd like to see me married! When we go, we
might gather with Michael Read and some others in Portland
or thereabouts.


After I returned from Diamond Hill on Sunday, I got a
message that my father had passed away on Saturday night.
Actually, right about the time of the salsa dancing. He had
been very ill, often painfully, for 2 years. A few months
ago, I went to see him in Seattle for what I knew would be
the last time. It was a nice meeting, clear, un-encumbered,
loving, spacious.

My family thinks he went peacefully and purposefully when
he did. My mother, a good 50's-style wife and mother who
lived for and through her husband for over half a century,
is taking it hard. But knowing he was at peace gives her
some comfort, and she's learning a bit about how grieving
is done. I spent a lot of time with her on the phone. Our
family is atheist by tradition, but my sister (45 years
old) has a Japanese boyfriend who is introducing her to
Buddhism, and this is helping her. She in turn is helping
my mother.

The lady I am seeing and I are pretty serious, will
probably get engaged soon. Her name is Ann (Yan-Ming).
She's from Canton, above Hong Kong. A few weeks ago, she
had a beautiful Chinese agate and crystal bracelet
custom-made for my mother, with a matching necklace. She
wants to give this to my mother when she meets her. I think
we'll go in December for the holidays. This cheered my mom
up, I think she'd like to see me married! When we go, we
might gather with Michael Read and some others in Portland
or thereabouts.

_________________________________________________________________________

MARK OTTER

Greg, sweet heart,

May your father be free from suffering
May your father be clear
May your father be happy
May all beings interpenetrate your father as He wills.

________________________________________________________________________

CHRISTIANA DURANCZYK

Dear Greg..

What an amazing sequence of letters we've received from you
tonight! Before you shared both the extremes of sad and
joyful news, you first offered us such lovely abstracts of
your experience with us. You are a rather remarkable man.

I sit with you in this time of familial void. That the Deep
Heart knows that even death is included in Consciousness,
is some balm for the surface heart. Yet, the surface heart
has a rhythm of its own needing respect. I light a warm
Golden candle to gently illuminate the contracting hearts.
I light a Crystal clear one for your dad's transition.

__________________________________________________________________________

Mark plunges into Truth
Like Gazelle
Standing in a new-age crystal shop
First smell of the new-lit lion incense.
Glass everywhere
Flying razor dharma

It's good
Mark needs bleeding
And the room needs the blood.

--Mark Otter

__________________________________________________________________________

DAVID HODGES

At lunch today I went to sit on a bench by the harbor. I
live in New Haven, which is home to the newly built replica
of the Amistad, the slave ship on which Cinque and his
fellow slaves revolted against their cruel masters. The
Amistad came to New Haven where the former slaves were
tried and set free.

So this completely new replica of the Amistad now sits
proudly at the wharf in New Haven, and hordes of people are
visiting it. It is a genuine fake. It is a real, sea-worthy
ship, but only a replica, a copy of that which it
represents. Yet people don't care, genuine fakes are mostly
what our whole lives are about these days, from Disney
World, to tv, to movies, to virtual experiences of all
kinds. Even when we do things like fall in love it is often
a copy of the real thing, we construct it according to
patterns we have learned about from others.

So, anyway, my visual field was full of activity - sky,
clouds, harbor, water, ships, people. My auditory field was
full of traffic noise and the breeze, and my skin also
registered the breeze, as well as the heat of the sunlight.
I was trying to get into the pure Witness state and the
thought occurred to me that consciousness consists of that
of which consciousness is aware, and then I thought, no,
that isn't right, consciousness persists as we go to sleep
(I have remained aware while entering sleep), and,
according to reports from people like Ken Wilber, persists
into deep dreamless sleep. And, after death. So
consciousness is. It shines whether or not there is
something in its field. I remember that light that appeared
in my awareness over a year ago and that is still here, and
I think it is the pure light of consciousness.

Within this view, the so-called "witness" seems somewhat
vague and shadowy and unreal. It seems like less of a
feature of the verifiable awareness field than it did last
year.

The idea that Greg gave me via his subtle-body meditation,
of the illusion of locality, is very helpful. The idea that
consciousness is local is an illusion. The idea that what I
was seeing today at the harbor was of a particular time and
place is an illusion. It is an illusion brought on by our
habitual perceptual methodology of triangulating objects in
time and space for convenience. But in "Reality" this isn't
true, and thus, non-localized Reality provides a convenient
way to surf from time/space locus to time/space locus
instantaneously.

We are bound by what we know. Our knowledge makes
everything we perceive a genuine fake.

So knowledge creates another perceptual blinder, a way to
structure that which is inherently limitless.

Meanwhile, back to consciousness. If I stay focused on the
shining independent consciousness, no matter whether it
seems to arise in my head or chest or on some minor planet
of the Sirius sector, something happens. The Ramana I-I
feeling starts to arise. Energetic stirrings are felt in
the right-hand heart center.

It is an interesting thing to note that I still don't know
why attention is so different than consciousness. For this
only works when I work the attention muscle to stay in
radiant consciousness. When that muscle relaxes, which it
is wont to do, attention wanders all over the place and I
"go to sleep" for a while. Why is that?

I think there are energy fields, or M-fields (Rupert
Sheldrake's morphogenic fields) that do that. Attention
normally runs along M-lines that have been created through
millenia of human existence. Only by applying a
vector-energy can we break free. Note that the vector
energy required is really not that much. The chains that
bind us are weak and easily broken. So the path to
self-realization consists of establishing new M-lines
sufficiently strong enough to break the attraction of the
old ones. So it isn't a matter of "spirituality" or
anything like that, it is a matter of establishing vectors
that set attention in a new heading. That's what meditation
does.

So I left my bench by the Harbor, itself a genuine fake,
and head back to work, feeling good, celebrating.

___________________________________________________________________________

Glaciers

I have seen the heart of glaciers...
Cold, ponderous, inexorable,
And with the right glasses
Seen to ebb and flow.
Tidelike, yearning to be close to the moon
Wishing to be free to play with dolphins
To rise in plumes of rainbow mist
To wet parched lips - to Love.
I too wish to be more fluid,
More quickly in my natural state
More responsive to the playful ways of water
Lighter and more full of light
More able to meet your needs
Especially your need to melt.

--Mark Otter

___________________________________________________________________________

A new link has just been added to the Spiritual Net
Directory: Now you can read on the web seven chapters of a
somewhat poetic, somewhat abbreviated version of: The
Avadhuta Gita: click:
http://home.talkcity.com/GaiaWay/infinite_freedom then
click the Avadhuta Gita link.

--uarelove

________________________________________________________________________________

Poem by a beloved friend, Jimmy Hurley, of the Tuesday in
New York satsang gathering. In tonight's satsang, the
concept of external objects was brought up, and Jimmy was
spot-on with a poem he had written a few years ago.

Love,

--Greg

NO-THING'S THERE

There's an object standing in front of you
or though it may appear.
But if you stop to contemplate
you'll find it is not there.

For as you look, the seer sees
a picture in your mind.
A concept of a thing out there
is all that you can find.

I bet you'll say, "No, here it is,"
and pick it up to show
-- but that's a feeling in your hand
that's all you really know.

"Wait a minute," I hear you say
what trickery this ruse
I can not bear to think these thoughts
my mind I'm sure to lose.

But as all things must come and go
true comfort you will find.
You're not your feelings, or your thoughts
not your body or your mind.

So don't be alarmed, I'll tell you why
there's nothing you should fear
you are the very consciousness
in which all you know appears.

--Jimmy Hurley
_______________________________________________________________________


I see friends shaking hands, saying how do you do...
They're really saying I love you, and I think to myself,
what a wonderful world...

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