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Highlights #808

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Friday/Saturday, August 24 - 25

ERIC BLACKSTEAD

HOW MUCH DO YOU WANT IT?

Valerie,

How much do you want it? For me, this is the prime
question.

How much do you want to be free of this man?
How much do you want to be free of the memories of
this man, and their effect on you?

Let's not talk about yogic abstractions like
discrimination or dispassion. Let's talk about
change and addiction, And how much you want to
change and stop being emotionally addicted.

I don't know you except as a text. Let's call
Valerie a "text with a heart". Now the question is:
How much does a "text with a heart" want to change
it's story?

Only you can answer this question. What I can do is
point out to you that outside of this question, not
much of any of the rest of this matters. If you
haven't built up enough:

regret
ambition
anguish
self hope
or
self disgust
or some other motivating emotion, you're just whistling in the dark.
You can read every religious text, self help manual or "surrender prayer" out
there &
it won't do a thing for you.

How much do you want it?

If you want "it", however you define "it", enough,
then I've got one modest suggestion. All I can tell
you as a former alcoholic (I know, former is
supposed to be a no-no, but why should I lie to
you?) is that it worked for me, and discrimination
and vairagya came along eventually for the ride.

I've just checked with Amazon.com and Handbook to
Higher Consciousness by Ken Keyes is still only
$8.95, ($7.95 for you, kid) brand new. Not bad for
a book that's been an underground hit since 1975.
And (because I like your style) I'm going to allow
as how the same vendor will let you have a 'used'
copy for only (get this) $2.60 (that's right) only
$2.60 (just tell'em I sent ya).

It tore me up to learn a technique that calls
itself the "Living Love Method", and I didn't carry
it around with me out in plain view. Believe it or
not, the paper that the cover's made of actually
seemed to be the same material that the Boy Scout
Manual came in, so it didn't even 'feel' right. I
don't know what a new one is made out of but my
1975 model was built to last, and, unlike other
'handbooks", this one is built to be handled.

Buy it, ( you can't tell me that you can't afford
it ) read it, and then ask yourself, "How much do I
want it?" If you want it enough to train yourself,
and face a little more pain, then you'll be on your
way. It's like AA, if you want it enough, it always
works.

yours in the bonds, eric

Ps. Don't worry about me, I get my commission at
the end of the month.

-------------------------------------------------------

A long time ago I met Hilda Charlton, a teacher
popularized by Ram Dass' writings. A friend asked
about her on the Bhairava site, and in thinking
about my answer, I thought to consult her site (a
commemorative site, as she died some years ago). I
found this, and thought it might be applicable
here. The words are Hilda's. She is speaking of
Bhagavan Nityananda, as well as breath control.

In my own case, as soon as I stood before this
spiritual giant, this mahatma, a change took place.
All outgoing thoughts turned inward, a peace and
bliss was felt, and the mind became calm and quiet.
Not an outward word had been spoken, but the change
in consciousness had taken place within, silently.
He knew everything without talking. I was standing
in front of him and motioned to him that I was
doing pranayama, to get his approval. He nodded
that he understood. Later, I was carrying his book
on yoga, "Chidakash Geetha", and I opened it on a
bus thinking about Swamiji, and it opened to his
answer. There on the page I turned to was, "A yogi
is no yogi who does not have control of his
breath."

When I was writing this article, I went to the
bookcase and took out his book and said aloud to
the air, "Where in your book is that about
breathing?" I just opened the book at random. Yes,
Swamiji still lives and blesses, for I turned to
the following: "Those who do not concentrate on
breath have no aim, no state, no intelligence and
no fulfillment. So, concentrate and think.
Concentrate on indrawing and outgoing
breath...Breathe, concentrating on the sound the
breath produces...Breathe in so that the internal
sound may be audible to the ears."

And in this subtle form, Bhagavan repeated his
former silent diksha of "Soham" to Hilda, not, I
think, to confirm her already consistent practice,
but rather to provide her with this story to tell.
But that's just my opinion.

____________________________________________________________-

GLORIA LEE

Dear Valerie,

Become whatever you like...
I think you are already a pretty great person!!

Love, Glo

********************************

Saints Bowing in the Mountains

Do you know how beautiful you are?

I think not, my dear.

For as you talk of God,
I see great parades with wildly colorful bands
Streaming from your mind and heart,
Carrying wonderful and secret messages
To every corner of this world.

I see saints bowing in the mountains
Hundreds of miles away
To the wonder of sounds
That break into light
From your most common words.

Speak to me of your mother,
Your cousins and your friends.

Tell me of squirrels and birds you know.
Awaken your legion of nightingales -
Let them soar wild and free in the sky.

And begin to sing to God.
Let's all begin to sing to God!

Do you know how beautiful you are?

I think not, my dear,

Yet Hafiz
Could set you upon a Stage
And worship you forever!

____________________________________________________________

JAN SULTAN

Life is a computer game [or movie] with multiple
endings. According to the choices you make you end
up in a different path. So there are choices to be
made at particular junctures or crossroads but
after the choice has been made you have to act your
part according to script and plot.

You have another choice, however. To refuse to play
any more. This is partly like the game of hide and
seek. God or your 'Real Self' hides and you seek.
If you manage to find, the game is over. Or
alternatively you could refuse to play by keeping
the mind blank as much as possible. This too has
worked for many people. The blank mind results in a
slow lifting of the veil or spell and you see the
Reality. Another tactic is to play hard until you
tire of it all [remember Shakespeare's 'Surfeit']
and the vacuum thus produced in time sucks in the
Reality.

Whatever you do, whatever your plot or story line
has you believing as being the right path. Keep in
mind one thing. Don't take things too seriously.
Its all a game. The joke is on you and the joker,
who did it to you, is also you!

____________________________________________________________

MICHAEL GALAHAD

"It (tao) can not be defined and as it can not be
defined, so too can it not be defended. There is no
moving ahead. Where I am from is a map to here.
Where to next? No knowing. Get that?" tsh

Continuation of this thought:

Thus, we must understand that the 'mechanism of
reason' is wrongly applied to the past to make a
feeble attempt to give reason to why I am here at
'this point' from 'that past'.

Further, we use 'divination' technics of all sorts
to skip what is tomorrow towards something that is
too far ahead.

This is why we are doomed to repeat our mistakes
over and over again. We fail to see the things 'in
front of our noses'. This is the cycle of death and
re-birth on scale from the smallest violations of
the eightfold (nine: 'right judgement' as Jesus
contribution) path to the greatest violations of
ego and, ultimately, the 'illusion of death and
body'.

The weak rise against the strong (yin to the yang)
and, in time, defeat the strong, thus becoming the
strong and the next target for the new weak (yang
to the yin).

Do not hate your 'enemy' or you shall become your
enemy. This is the blindness that cycles. Leave
your 'enemies' to their own devices. Yes... you are
correct. This is a much slower road but then,
consider, where are you going and who will be
waiting to take your head when you get there? No
one if you take your time.

We seek the past as if it holds the key to the
future. It does not. The future that approaches is
a karmic reaction and release of what is being done
in the past. A tight loop of 'none and two' giving
an illusion of three. Yesterday, Today, and
Tomorrow.

'Make reason of what is becoming' and the path...
'your path'... will reveil itself. The only way out
is through the self which, to now, has been defined
by all other things.

In other words, you do not know who you are because
you do not know where you are going (although I'd
bet you know where you would like to go) not
because you lack the 'God identity (I AM) source'
<we all have that> but rather becuase you lack a
direction. It is behind you.

Jesus Christ

Gentle Peace.

o
-- hobbes; 0,0,0,0:00.00 Nao

_______________________________________________________________________

JODY R

> So the mistake you are making is thinking that the samkaras of Ramana
> are Ramana, kind of like thinking a hologram is the same as the
> original if you will, not an perfect analogy but a help for thinking.

Ramana, like every other being, is Brahman.
However, Ramana, like every other person, had a
locus of expression that we could call a
personality. He may have totally transcended it and
was not identified with it at all, but it certainly
existed. If it did not, he wouldn't have been much
more than a lump of quivering flesh.

When speaking of Ramana, all we have is his
existence as a personality. If we say he was the
Self, that is true. However, that is true for us
all, regardless of our status as realized.

The only difference between Ramana and the rest of
us was that he was realized, while only some of us
are. Perhaps he didn't think of himself as an
individual, but he certainly operated as one. When
a beloved devotee approached him, he expressed love
for them, just as we would for a beloved friend.

The point is that whether one is a jivanmukta or an
aspirant, there continues to exist a locus of
individuality from which we operate. We may have
completely transcended it, and are not identified
with it anymore, but as long as we are in a body,
this particular collection of samskaras (which is
what I'm calling the mind) is how the jivanmukta
lives, breathes and communicates with his/her
fellow non-existent beings.

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