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Highlights #886

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11/12/01 Monday

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


RASHMI MOORJANI

Here are some powerful words by Maharaj Nisargadatta.

Does your waking state come about by itself, or do you awaken
yourself as an act of volition ? Indeed, the least effort on `your'
part will prevent what otherwise might have happened naturally and
spontaneously.

And the joke wihin the joke is that your deliberately not doing
anything will also prevent it from happening! It is simple
really; `doing' something and `not doing something' are both
volitional efforts. There must be a total absence of the `doer', the
total aspects of both the positive and negative aspects of `doing'.
Indeed this is true surrender.


GARY MERRILL


If there isn't a 'doer' now, there never was a doer and there never
will be one.

What we have bought into is a cause and effect philosophy which has
value within restricted limits, for instance firing the gun causes
the bullet to fly. But that explanation is always partial unable to
explain the cause of the cause.

That there could be a 'doer' then that somehow has causal
independence is a fallacy, and who is writing these words.....


GREG GOODE

Same goes for a non-doer!!

Yes, I actually do mean just what you said - nondoing as a subtle form of
doing! The fallacy can be seen working in people's desire to become
non-doers. This desire is fueled by some Westernized advaita
teachings. It is a subtle way of personalizing these teachings.

"What is the actuality of the situation?" you ask. The actuality of the
situation is that there is no situation with an independent
actuality. That includes this question and this answer!!

Doership is just one phenomenon that has no independent existence. There
is no operational or perceptual center.

But striving for non-doership as IT, as the end of the line -- this puts
the cart before the horse. Doership lacks independent existence simply
because *all* phenomena lack independent existence. Nothing is really Out
There or In Here the way it might seem. Planes, trains, automobiles,
subtle essences, thoughts, levels of consciousness, nothingness,
uncertainty, or operational centers. None of it stands on its own,
separate and apart. None of it is seen apart from the seeing. This goes
for seeing as well.

Doership seems to be a very catchy, high-profile thing. It has been
fruitful for people to focus on. It has been a psychologically pivotal
teaching point, because so many folks are fascinated with issues
surrounding doing and action -- issues such as guilt, control, success, etc.

I notice, for example, the students of Wayne Liquorman, a friend of mine
who talks about non-doership. Most of the people who go to these talks ask
questions on the issues of controlling, and guilt. These are their
issues. Other teachers get questions on totally different topics....

ANDREW MCNAB
on woodworking

Enlightenment is freedom. Freedom to chop wood, freedom to carry water.
Freedom to appreciate and understand people, everyone in general, and every one in
particular. It's the great leveller, it's ease. Disease is the absence of ease, or
rather the obscuration, since ease is never absent. This is what it means to say
everyone is enlightened; ease is everpresent. Talents are an outpouring of ease.

Without ease there could be no disease,
With or without disease, there is ease.


MATTHEW


..........enlightenment is slavery. slavery to the will of god, to
the movement of the divine, the absolute. Freedom to do this or that
means having choices. In a life of spiritual slavery (enlightenment)
there are no choices, no options. One can only serve. Having a
personal life becomes a mute point, as a personal life is about
what "i" want to do.


JOHN METZGER

Hi good people, A follow-up on the last line from Hafiz that Gloria posted, thanks Glo,: "The extraordinary
humor........of God."

Excerpt, fierce invalids home from hot climates, Tom Robbins

"Well," said Switters, "this pyramid-headed *curandero* from deep in
the Amazonian jungle seems to have concluded that light and darkness
can merge in a similar fashion on the biomolecular plane, the social
plane. He says it occurs during laughter. That a people who could
move in the primal realm of laughter could live free of all of life's duali-
ties. They would be the first since the original men, the ancestors of
the Real People, to live in harmony with the fundamental essence of
the universe. The essence our quantum physicists are talking about.
Today Is Tomorrow says the civilized man can't perpetuate that state
because he lacks the Kandakandero knowledge of the different levels
of reality, he's become emotionally invested in one narrow, absurdly
simplistic view of the nature of existence; and the Indians can't do it
because they lack the buoyancy of the civilized man's humor. But the
people strong and nimble enough to combine unlimited intellectual
flexibility with the mysterious energy of the laugh, well, they would
become..."
"Enlightened?" ventured the abbess.
"Enlightened and endarkened," Switters corrected her. "Enlight-
ened *and* endarkened. The ultimate."
Masked Beauty wasn't convinced. "A sense of humor is a fine
thing," she agreed, "but it is not a way of life, and it certainly is not a
means of serving our Lord. This strange savage of yours does not even
*know* our Lord."
............................................................
"Perhaps I am just a stupid old woman, but I fail to understand how your
shaman's ideas are at all practical or applicable. How can a mere sense of
humor...."
"And a flexible, expansive definition of reality," Switters re-
minded her.
"Okay, that as well. But in a troubled world such as ours, one
cannot walk around laughing at everything like a mindless magpie.
Where is the hope in that?"
He didn't seem to have a ready response. Tugging at a curl, as
if the pressure on his scalp might activate cerebration, he cleared
his throat but said nothing. He was entertaining notions about how
a radical and active sense of humor could puncture the sterile
bubble of bourgeois respectability, how it could destroy smug illusions
and in so doing, strengthen the soul; how if the essence could
somehow be extracted from laughter, that essence might prove less
like sound than like flavor, the flavor of the soul tasting itself at the raw
bar of the absolute. Yet, he was neither informed enough(he hadn't
previously given it much thought) or drunk enough to put such
notions into words. What the hell? Since when was he the shaman's
mouthpiece?
Observing his hesitation, Domino spoke up. "I don't believe Mr.
Switters is advocating mindless laughter, auntie. I don't believe he is
advocating anything. He's simply trying to solve the riddle of the third
prophecy. And I must say, I find it an attractive alternative to our own
interpretation."
"What? Laughing one's way into Heaven?"
"I think what is at issue here," Domino went on, "is a kind of
mindful playfulness. I have observed it in Mr. Switters, and I suspect it
could be extricated from Today is Tomorrow's philosophy---a philoso-
phy, by the way, that seems almost to have resulted from combining
aspects of an archaic shamanic tradition with a kind of Zen nonattach-
ment and an irreverent modern wit. Mr. Switters defeats melancholy
by refusing to take things, including himself, too seriously."
"But many things *are*----"
"Are they? What I've learned from Mr. Switters is that no matter
how valid, how vital, one's belief system might be, one undermines
that system and ultimately negates it when one gets rigid and dog-
matic in one's adherence to it."
Masked Beauty rubbed her scar as though trying to erase it. Or to
stimulate new growth. "I realize that happiness is relative and often
dependent upon or at least affected by external circumstances, whereas
cheerfulness can be learned and consciously practiced. Both you
and Mr. Switters seem to have a knack for practicing cheerfulness---
oh, but I can see that our discussing Mr. Switters in this way is making
him uncomfortable. Let us return to the ideas of his pyramid man.
Assuming that a deliberate comic cheerfulness can evolve into a sus-
tainable joy, where does the wisdom come from?"
Domino deferred to him, but he nodded for her to answer. "I
would guess," she said, "that what might be extrapolated from Today Is
Tomorrow's epiphany is that joy itself is a form of wisdom. Beyond
that is the suggestion that if people are nimble enough to move freely
betweeen different perceptions of reality and if they maintain a relaxed,
playful attitude well-seasoned with laughter, then they would live in
harmony with the universe; they would connect with all matter,
organic and inorganic, at its purest, most basic level. Could not that be
our Lord's plan for us, his goal for his children? Now, auntie, don't
make a face. Perhaps....perhaps that's even where God resides, there
in that---how did Switters call it?----that energized void at the base of
creation. It makes more sense than on some poof-poof Riviera among
gold-plated clouds."
Pausing to let that sink in---to sink into her own consciousness as
well as her aunt's----Domino took a Switters-sized swallow of wine.
"Perhaps, too," she resumed, "Today Is Tomorrow's ideal is precisely
what is needed to rescue the human race from its tragic flaw: pride-
ful narcissism. Isn't that where all this 'seriousness' comes from? A
dilated ego?"


from the jacket: Switters is a contradiction for all seasons:
an anarchist who works for the government, a pacifist who
carries a gun, a vegetarian who sops up ham gravy, a
cyberwhiz who hates computers, a robust bon vivant who
can be as squeamish as any fop, a man, who, though
obsessed with the preservation of innocence, is aching to
deflower his high-school-age stepsister (only to become
equally enamored of a nun ten years his senior.)

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