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Nonduality Salon (/\)

Highlights #428

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Wednesday, August 2


Timestoppers Textbook

"To know that you are a prisoner of your own mind, that you
live in an imaginary world of your own creation is the dawn
of wisdom." Nisargadatta Maharaj (contributed by Gene
Poole)

________________________________________________________________________

MARY: These thoughts appeared to me not long ago: Illusion
cannot come from Reality; they are exclusive of one
another. If all of this (our world/ life here) is a Dream,
and we really are not the dream figures but the Dreamer of
the Dream, then the Dreamer is not real either. I consider
the Dreamer of the Dream to be Consciousness. Wrong
conclusion?

JAN B.: Why a conclusion at all? The analogy of illusion
and dreamer is given to those, considering themselves to be
in a dream, by those, claiming(?) to be out of the dream.
Remember the "explanation" of matter after the discovery of
electrons, protons and neutrons? From then on, matter
became "almost empty space" - "solid" matter being the
illusion. Then, the discovery of quantum mechanics,
describing force-fields, making solid elementary
"particles" the illusion... A conclusion is based on
perception and perception is likely to be illusive (it is
never what it seems to be). As thoughts can be perceived,
that includes conclusions based on thinking, which makes
the above and every other conclusion based on thinking... -
illusive - :) Now where does that leave "you"?

________________________________________________________________________

JAN BARENDRECHT

a rotating wheel looks like a zero

______________________________________________________________________

MARCIA PAUL: At this moment in time, I just feel yucky. I
agree with Xan. My behavior is not any better (or worse)
than that which I criticize. Someone has to just stop. And
I wish to find that place inside (silence if you will) from
which the the stop emerges.

It is the feeling after an emotional indulgence and
identification. The morning after.

MANCHINE: Yes, it happens, we are human. You are fortunate
to be able to recognize it.

The last time it happened to me I took an afternoon to look
into the eyes of self, here's how it went.

Went to the mountains today. Me and Ale (my wife) and our
black lab Miki!

They're both nondualists. Miki came back from a romp in the
sticks, tongue hanging down to her waist, a smile as big as
the sky. They were sitting there against the glimmering
image of the valley, in one instant, we all looked into
each other's eyes... how could this possibly be?! Grains of
sand filtering between my fingers, took an eternity to fall
to the ground.

I'm in Love, with Self

Mountains, park, where ever. See in the moving bodies of
others the same life's energy that flows through you. See
in everything that touches your consciousness, Hir touch.
It's just for you. Treasure it, ask it to show you the
other side.

*****

XAN: I also like catching the early warning signals of
indulgence onset. There's no substitute for stopping it in
its tracks. Talk about happy!

MARCIA PAUL: It is like standing in the sand as a wave
breaks around one; everything is pulling to go in that one
direction. The sand is even pulling away around ones feet.
To stay on ones feet is truly a happy experience.

_________________________________________________________________________

DAN BERKOW

None our "naming" talk matters. The only thing that matters
is waking up to this fact; calling it "mind" won't help or
hinder waking.

*****

This "refined intellect" which sees itself burdened by
contact with mundane things is suffering from its own
imagined separation from the mundane. It's "refinement" is
its cage.

*****

As said in the Hebrew scripture: "I cause the sun to shine
on the evil and the good equally."

Nothing is out of place. There is only each event occuring
in context of One Event.

*****

You aren't "in" Nonduality, you *are* Nonduality, and
that's why you don't realize yourself as being "in"
Nonduality.
___________________________________________________________________________

GENE POOLE

In my practices, I have noted the clever use of helpful
metaphor, especially in the task of describing the
undescribable, or at least what is difficult to describe to
those of limited experience.

One such 'metaphor system' is found in Vajrayana (Tibetan
Buddhism). I refer to the statements which refer to various
'Deities', most of which are classified as either
'benevolent' or 'wrathful'.

(Our beloved "Jehovah" is course, both benevolent AND
wrathful; and he is the source of the crazymaking
'double-bind' which is so pervasive in our history and our
world-dream culture; I hold that without His 'help', there
would be little problem with schizophrenia, bipolar, etc. )

Eventually, the practitioner of Vajrayana will eventually
'tumble to' (realize) that what is being discussed, in the
topic of Deities, has a lot to do with how we perceive
'ordinary people'; the realization is that it is humans
(among other entities) who are being discussed as being
either benevolent or wrathful.

This realization is usually held in denial, the expectation
being that there 'really are (invisible spiritual) Deities'
which become visible as a result of long and dedicated
practice. What happens instead, is shocking, a real
hair-raiser; the practitioner sees these entities, these
Deities, as dwelling in and Being human individuals. This
includes everyone; your mother, child, wife, friend, etc.

This perception, if it comes unbidden or unexpectedly, can
result in major 'freaking out' of the perceiver; a person
suddenly SEES a 'demonic' or 'angelic' aspect/presence in
the person to whom they are relating. This event does
occur, and is one of the compassionate reasons why the
Tibetan Buddhists include this information in their
cosmological teachings.

I offer this information as compassionate caution to all
readers.

Beware of the impulse to react to perceived 'evil', and
equally, beware of the impulse to follow perceived 'good'.

A deep study of the universe as seen by Vajrayana will
fully inform you of the inherent traps and hazards to be
found in our basic spiritual infrastructure; specifically,
the impulses of AVERSION and its polar opposite, DESIRE.

You may note, if you look carefully and dispassionately,
that among the population of self-identified followers of
various spiritual paths, that there is shame attached to
desire, and yet VIRTUE is attached to aversion. People
speak with pride and passion, of what they 'abhor', and yet
they speak little of what they desire, having accepted that
desire is a flaw.

In the universe of living humans, life is movement, and all
movement has momentum. Given this state of given movement
(the gift of life itself), reactions and choices result in
changes of direction of movement, at a given momentum.

True and factual spiritual teachings take these factors
into account. Given our pre-existing movement and momentum,
we are always 'going to somewhere' and 'going away from
somewhere'. Skillfully transmitted (shared) teachings point
to this movement as the chief factor of WHY we should
beware of both aversion and desire.

The aversive impulse is to move _away_, while the desire
impulse is to move _toward_. Persons who are unconscious of
this basic reality of human design principle, are very easy
to manipulate; simply present them with a symbol which is
aversive, and they will move away from it. If at the same
time, a symbol of desire is presented, they will move
toward it. It is quite easy to manipulate most people in
this way; this is how the entire world-dream system of
governance/control is enacted.

Wrathful Deities are generally considered to be symbols of
aversion, and Benevolent Deities are considered to be
attractive (desirous). According to Vajrayana, we have
little choice but to continue to inhabit realms shared by
deities of both natures, but also, we have the choice to
react to them, or not.

'Not-reacting' to Deities is difficult, but it can be done,
and is called 'abiding'.

The textbook teaching example of this human dilemma is
found in the so-called 'Tibetan Book of the Dead', which
(in proper translation!) leads us to understand that the
dilemma of the newly-dead person, is not at all different
than our dilemma as living persons; that being, the
never-seized choice to abide, rather than react, to
perceived 'good and evil'.

One who seizes this choice of abiding, will perceive the
whole universe swirling about them, each particle DEMANDING
recognition, respect, worship, fear, or desire. The
cacophony of contradictory voices will become overwhelming,
the impulse to move will become very powerful. The choice
to abide, must be long-cultivated and firmly in place, to
survive this powerful challenge. That is why, in Vajrayana,
the teachings are presented early and in digestible
metaphorical form; it is to give children the chance to
learn abiding (non-reaction) as a major, life-enhancing
choice.

In the inner teachings of Vajrayana, it is stated that the
reactive movement is what keys into existence, the very
reality which is the perfect outpicturing of the inner
assumptions of the person reacting. That is to say, that as
the universe of attractive and repulsive Deities swirl
about us, that we will inevitably 'see' a familiar moment,
and it is that tiny 'snapshot' which becomes the seed from
which our entire reality grows. In this way, it is said, we
are able to materialize our personal universe, and then to
begin seeking 'good' and avoiding 'evil' in that
self-created reality. And make no mistake; this
self-created reality is as 'real' as real can ever be. It
is not a shimmering, self-evident mirage. It is as real as
anything can seem, to a human Being.

Of note among 'wrathful Deities' is the bleeding
control-artist known as the 'Double-Binder'; it seems that
a majority of people are helpless against this form of
temptation. However, there is no compelling reason to leave
abiding and enter reaction. For this purpose, I present the
following...

LEARN TO UNDERSTAND THE DOUBLE-BIND PARALYSIS:

Here are common examples;

"You are an idiot."

"You are an idiot :)"

Note your reaction to each statement.

"Shut up and go away."

"Shut up and go away :)"

Note your reaction to each statement.

The 'Double-Bind' is applied for several reasons, and is
blatantly manipulative behaviour:

_1 Overt hostile acts or speech automatically expose the
motives and nature of the one acting-out; to disguise, one
pastes a smile. "Smile when you say that".

_2 Double-binding is ruthless control; it inflicts
paralysis by trapping between aversion and desire, but is
only effective against the inexperienced and
unsophisticated. A threat delivered with a smile, is still
a threat. When one is confronted with a threat, one wishes
to run away, but if at the same time, there is a smile,
even a mock-smile, one may be undecided as to what course
of action to take.

_3 Double-binding is done by those who have no other
alternative; double-binders, as a broad class of people,
were raised via double-bind control tactics, and thus know
no other way of behaving. Such individuals are to be
pitied, but also carefully avoided until the skill of
abiding is firmly in place.

_4 Individuals who apply double-bind control to others, are
desperately lonely, yet in terror of actual human contact;
typically, intense drama follows such individuals, and they
bring it with them always. Violent events occur; fire,
flood, injury, and other 'acts of God' are regular events
in the lives of those who practice this ruthless form of
fear-based bondage.

_5 Double-binders, living exclusively in an self-created
universe of CONTROL, inevitably struggle with others for
control and dominance; there are precious few moments of
equanimity, to be found in continual power-struggle. The
double-binder has a ready menu of blame close at hand; no
act which they commit, can be classified as 'wrong', for
all of their acts are done 'for the good of others'.

_6 Sentimental mock-love replaces actual empathy and
compassion, as the expression of the double-binder; love
becomes a veritable fetish, rather than a literal reality.
Because it is inherently false, sentimentality cannot be
maintained without constant reinforcement, and the best
'source' of reinforcement is found in power-conflict with
others. Living a lifestyle of control is guaranteed to be a
rich source of conflict, and each conflict is exploited to
reinforce the identity of the double-binder as 'good'. This
is of course done by the method of making the other 'bad'.

_7 The double-bind control artist will always avert
attention away from what they are really doing, by donning
the mantle of virtue, as they aggress upon others. In the
private logic of the control artist, it is plain that those
who offer opposition, are 'against what is good' and thus
'deserver what they get'.

It is up to everyone to simply avoid playing the game of
the double-binding control artist; if ignored, they will
protest that they are unappreciated for the good that they
do, and will also point with alarm to those who oppose
them, to rouse the 'rabble' to actions against those who
are the targets of control. If ignored, they will begin to
tearfully protest, to ask if their good is not seen, and to
be understood to be active agents of 'good', striking fear
into the closed hearts of those who would get away with
being 'out of control'.

Overall, the double-binder NEEDS opposition, and they are
sure to arouse it by their words and acts. This need is
really for the purpose of maintaining an identity of
'virtuous', while indulging in blatant aggressive acts of
paralysis and control over others. Predictably, words are
spoken which point to the evil of others, and how the
existence of those 'evil others' stands as justification
for 'strong action'.

Double-binding is, in a sense, the ultimate test of our
ability to abide. On the face of it, it is silly, the acts
of a stupid person who cannot see; yet, by sheer
persistence, it is itself a thorn in the side of everyone.
To learn how to abide the persistent presence of the
double-binding control-artist is indeed a high calling!

Now, back to the Vajrayana ideal of the wrathful Deity. In
the inner teachings, wrathful Deities are to be seen as the
same as benevolent ones, all Beings being the same Being.
But, until this is an ongoing practice, it is only an idea.
Firm abiding is the place between aversion and desire, and
is also the place of choice. Reaction is the incessant
movement between aversion and desire, and is the realm of
hell.

The double-binder is one who lives in hell; as such, they
perform a certain service, as do other criminals, in that
we are invited to live in hell with them, or to choose
otherwise. The criminal craft of the double-binder is the
art of camouflage, but for those with penetrating insight,
'good' is not an effective disguise for 'evil'. Neither
good nor evil are sufficient reasons for moving out of
abidance; yet, the choice to do so is always available.

If one who is subject to the chaotic fires of hell wishes
to boil the pot, it is simply their choice to do so; it is
also choice to allow that swirl of the universe to keep
right on swirling, as it always has and always will. From
this chaotic brew will emerge those who can abide the
boiling, no matter the constant admonitions of those who
would have us set ourselves against those identified as
'evil'.

"Resist not evil".

*****

DAN BERKOW

The prevalence of psychotic disorders is approximately the
same across cultures, a finding that intrigued me many
years ago when I ran across those statistics. And
depression is considered to be a world-wide epidemic,
according to the U.N.

Conceptualizable as an interaction of genes, biology,
family, culture, and thought-forms that is transcultural;
disorder within order, order with disorder, our human
condition.

Thanks, Gene, for your insightful comments about
aversion/desire and the use of double binds.

How about these double-binds: you're organized (to be
disorganized). you're alive (to be dead). you're here (you
ain't). you've a body (you're bodiless).

Yes, LIFE destroys me with a smiley face, "gives" to "take
away" with a smile.

Call it YHVH, call it Mandala, the wheel turns; I'm
strengthened to be destroyed; the attempt to destroy me,
awakens me.

If I *am* both apparent sides of all double-binds, no
double-bind holds me.

I awake - my double vision has led to dissolution of the
prison with no sides. The benevolent and wrathful dieties
are shining.

*****

Speaking to the topic of double-binds ...

The double-bind was considered by Bateson as a relationship
pattern that assisted development of schizophrenia.

The double-bind is considered to assist development of
hypnotic trance by hypnotherapists of the Ericksonian
persuasion.

So: If I'm good at double-binding, I maintain control, you
become uncertain, open to suggestion and, if it's strong
enough, paralyzed (entranced, bewildered, or catatonic).

The double-bind can involve discounting a meaning via a
meta-meaning, as:

I harm you, because I love you.

Or,

Because I love you, you disgust me.

or Bateson's famous example of a hug that is given stiffly
with distance, the nonverbal double-bind.

or, related, and a bit more subtle:

Your feelings are unreal, my ideas are what you feel.

Now, there's a certain double-bind that is popular among
sorcerers, magicians, and some spiritual types:

Because I know nothing is real, whatever I say is real is
so.

Who is being hypnotized by that one? The sorcerer, the
universe, or the imagined audience?

How about in military campaigns: Create disorder for the
sake of order. Hate for the sake of love.

In spiritual circles, an excellent double-binding
technique:

People who attack are egoic. I attack your ego because I'm
nonegoic.

Now, *that's* a pretty mesmerizing technique. No wonder
it's so popular with so many "enlightened" controllers.

No doubt I can benefit by understanding the double-bind. I
can learn to handle those who use such techniques in
interaction with me. Additionally, I can learn that the
double-bind I've used on myself allowed me the impression
that I took a form (and led to the impression that I then
could be involved with other forms that attempted to
double-bind me).

Intriguing that I would double-bind myself with the
formula:

I am aware of myself being

The essential double-bind that allows the construction of
myself as self-contructing is the situation in which I
notice myself objectifying myself by noticing myself.

Yes, it's all magic, all a double-bind, all a show without
an audience.

Even awareness is a double-bind: I am aware because my
awareness tells me I'm aware.

Even no-thingness is a double-bind: No-thingness is what
is, because no one knows that no-thing is.

I love learning this, because the show is awesome and
intriguing. Now, I don't have to be caught by it.

Love, Twice-unbound Dan

*****

DAVID HODGES

There is a good article about double binds at
http://www.well.com/user/bbear/double_bind.html with a
number of examples of double-bind interactions.

_______________________________________________________________________

JOHN FRANKLIN

Hello everyone on the list,

Does anyone know if the statement 'All is Past' (meaning
everything we perceive,do, say, think is allready in the
past, it has allready happened) is compatible with the
non-dual view? Is enlightenment the living experience of
this ?

ANDREW MACNAB

Welcome to the list. Yes this is certainly compatible with
nonduality. All knowledge is memory, even what is sensed by
the senses right now is past by the time it is registered.
There is only one thing which is present, now, not through
memory or senses. That one thing is awareness of being,
existence. Zazen or Ramana's self enquiry (pursuing the
question "Who am I?" to its end) are two ways of coming to
that awareness directly. Nagarjuna and Dogen (the founder
of soto zen) are two historical nondual thinkers who had a
lot to say about time. There is a sense in which time and
space are the same thing, space seems to exist because it
takes time to get from A to B, time seems to exist because
points A and B are separate. Current quantum physics seems
to undermine time/space, an electron can be in more than
one place at the same time. There is a chapter in Dogen's
big book Shobogenzo titled 'Uji' which covers this
exquisitely, Uji is his term for the eternal now moment,
and his point is that Uji contains...is... everything.

BRUCE MORGEN

I see no conflict, although the aphorism could use some
refinement imo. If something can be written or spoken of,
it nominally refers to a memory -- that is why it is often
said that the best language can do with reference to the
nondual is to hint at or point toward it.

As to what "enlightenment" is or isn't, one can state with
certainty that it is not of the past or the future, but
rather the famous "Eternal Now Moment." If it is not *now*
it literally isn't real, the past being dead data and the
future a fiction based upon that dead data. The most
precious bits of dead are the aforementioned hints at and
pointers to *right now*.

DAVID HODGES

My take on your question is this: I have never been able to
detect any evidence that the past or the future exist.
Everything I have ever experienced has been in the Present
Moment. Yes, the past exists in my mind's memories, and the
future in my fantasies and imagination, but does that make
them Real? Time, as has been elucidated to me by those
wiser than me, is a vast filing system for experience. If
it weren't for time we wouldn't be able to distinguish
duration, and thus wouldn't be able to experience our
experience as events. As far as the enlightenment
question...people on this list have never been able to
achieve any kind of consensus on what enlightenment is or
even if there is such a thing. To me enlightenment means
that I feel lighter, and brighter. Milan Kundera talks
about the "Unbearable Lightness of Being", but I find the
lightness pretty bearable, in fact, I find Being worth
celebrating! especially since there is nothing but Now to
celebrate in...

_______________________________________________________________________

ANDREW MACNAB

To conclude from this that all angry and depressed people
are potential killers is simple prejudice. There have been
times when I was angry and depressed but I would never have
dreamt of doing such a thing. There are people close to me
now similarly angry and depressed. If they could be
otherwise right now they surely would. But it's something
to be lived through. Acceptance of oneself as one is. Which
goes along with accepting 'others' and being accepted. It's
no help having well meaning people screaming at you to snap
out of it. Many great artists painters musicians writers
were/are angry and depressed, it fuelled their creativity,
they did their best work when they were feeling shitty and
the dark passion is what pushes their work from mundane to
transcendant. For some people, the way is into and through
anger and depression, there's no choice about it. To an
'outside' observer, such a person might appear horribly
stuck, obstinate, in dire need of 'fixing', but when the
well meaning one attempts a fix, the angry depressed one
attacks in self defense, being unwilling to be diverted off
course. Like Dante's descent into hell, there is a chance,
if the way is followed to its end, of coming out the other
side and climbing back into the sunlight, I know this by my
own experience, but on the way down, there's no turning
back. The black dogs the wolves and demons would tear you
to pieces if you tried.

___________________________________________________________________________

XAN

As compassion continues to reveal itself, I find that my
frustration and empathy with the human condition are both
melting away.

MARK OTTER

Yes, compassion melts fear and loneliness and frustration
is a compound of these (or so it seems to me...)

I love the way Thich Nhat Hanh talks of interbeing. It is
fundamental to the way things are. When you look at a
flower, what is it you see? If you look closely with
understanding, you see sun and wind and rain and dirt and
shit (Thich uses the term garbage - he is so gentle. yum)
When you look at the flower, you can see the garbage pile
that it will be dumped on when it dries out and wilts a
little. It has become garbage pile. When you see the
garbage pile, you can see the soil that it will become and
the methane in the air, which warms the planet, which
increases the rainfall, which waters the seeds that are the
continuation of the flower, the part that stayed "alive"
when the stalk and leaves and petals transformed themselves
into garbage pile, but you also see how the water joins
with the soil and the seed and becomes the resurrected
flower and how it will become garbage pile, ... That's
interbeing. yum. I am not sure what it feels like to see
that completely clearly except that I'm guessing it is more
straightforward and direct and pleasant then the dualities
in which I see it. I see the wisdom of it and the beauty of
it and I also see the sadness of it for any particular part
of that flower that might want to hold on to it's moment in
the sun, or any flower and dirt and water - become human,
that for some unknown reason decided to wish the flower
would stay another day in the fragrant, vivid colorful
reality that it was for one shining moment and will be
again and again and again... Hmmmm. Is that what you mean?
Yes, I deny that concept everytime I want to stop the movie
(sorry - new metaphor) to keep one frame that is
particularly compelling to me because I am silly enough to
have preferences. I agree. I'm increasingly inclined to let
the movie roll and actually watch it. It's a lovely film.
Molecules aggregate and become human and then whirl away to
be something else.

I don't know what whomever said the thing about compassion
never melting meant. Hope you find out.

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