can meet the contraction of our selves or each other and
listen to it's atonality in such a way that we surrender
and allow it to be ingested into the spaciousness of the
On Spiritual Apathy
Email List vs 'Real People'
December 20, 1999, This
Wednesday: The Stillpoint
New Eyes on Ram Dass: A Report from
the Inner Directions Gathering
Eckhart Tolle at Inner Directions
Integrity and Unbounded
Awareness: Recent Observations of Nonduality Salon List
inquiry seems to have called forth the usual replies from
this space.. from those (guys mostly) who speak from the
One dimension.. eschewing any credibility of the
multidimensionality of our human existence.
I often wonder.. should I go elsewhere to speak of the
human face? Elsewhere to know the fellowship of others
who are living in the Venn overlap of both the human
face, and the Heart of Being, which embraces and
dissolves it? Elsewhere to speak and learn from the ways
we are being taught to mature in the stream, through
releasing of ideas which no longer fit. To be asked
"who speaks?; who learns? and how can perfection
mature?" are useful as examining levers of the focal
point of bound identity; but also can elicit contraction
as well as expansion.
It seems to me, there is a certain imbalance in the
righteousness of only speaking from the monotone voice of
the 'Self realized'. Though I have no doubt that there
are, amongst this list, those who have realized Self, the
tenor of the absolute is not always absolution (eg
reconciliation) for those of us seeking nothing, knowing
nothing, just simply living the vagaries of a life of
attention... flowing, more or less encumbered, with what
shows up. The reconciliation which leads to dissolution
seems always, for me, through bringing all to the altar
of the living heart.
So.. I'll risk being wrong here and speak with you as a
friend.. as one who might sit with you over a cup of tea
and look (by your side) at what is presenting as inquiry
It was said,
"I think it's root is fear. Of what? Taking
responsibility maybe. Of success? As we learn to observe
the thoughts, it's relatively easy to observe the ego
working on an obvious level. Is this a subtle way to
undermine our spiritual search? To keep us stuck? Why
when we yearn for something do we sometimes get in our
You ask about apathy. I can't speak to "spiritual
apathy", as I no longer know what that might mean.
But I do know apathy and stuckness and the host of other
ways the tricksters mind and emotions can obfuscate an
essential current of clarity. I ask myself, what is it
that I Am response-able for? "Success" as a
Being benchmark no longer applies here. How could we
know what success would look like? As do you, I observe
the thought patterns, and the measurements of success are
always ones socially given, based on learned values. They
have value in the world we buy our groceries, but hold no
resonance in the expanse of living stream.
Your question "is this a subtle way to undermine our
spiritual search?" reads here as essentially the
opposite of what this list is about. If I am reading you
incorrectly, please let me know. I hear this question as
spoken from a lens position of a self, intent upon a
spiritual practice towards a goal of moving closer to
whatever "spirit" means to you. And your
inquiry is whether ego is undermining the essential
intent, as laid out. The direction of those on this list,
is to examine the very self which thinks it has anywhere
to go to know 'spirit'. And furthermore.. to gradually or
suddenly recognize the, rather radical, possibility that
there is no self here at all.. merely an infrastructure
of ideas/thoughts/emotions woven with such exquisitely
subtle intricacy that it never occurs to pause and
examine it's own realism. Once this turn, this pause,
this (as Jan says) de-conditioning begins,
infrastructures begin collapsing. As Tim says to Susan:
"I 'hear you'... suffering is real enough to the
sufferer. The sufferer may begin to question its own
reality. The presence of the *sufferer* is the problem,
not the suffering.
Until the sufferer realizes its own fundamental
nonexistence (not doctrinally, not conceptually, but
directly and experientially), there are only band-aids to
slap over wounds that never heal."
While I recognize the truth spoken in this statement, I'd
also like to suggest that there is a way of being with
each other, through the transition (of de-construction)
which can be compassionate. The band-aids can also mature
and need not be toxic to the process. We can be present
in the fullness of heart, or space; as aid to the bands
still contracting. We can meet the contraction of our
selves or each other and listen to it's atonality in such
a way that we surrender and allow it to be ingested into
the spaciousness of the living heart. The foreground is
subsumed by the Background of love, present Now.
Gradually "the presence of the *sufferer*" is
seen, not as "problem" to be obliterated, but
merely as inanimate flotsam, no longer magnetically
drawing forth animation.
The ebbing of need for animation is what I am learning
here. What is spoken rarer here is expression of the
heart of containment. Tim says:
"'Divine love' is what we *are*, not what we
And while I wholeheartedly agree.. there is still here a
human who is graced when this is met in living presence
My soul yearns for You,
Eternal Flame of Love,
longing to reconnect to
the Great Mystery!
Every day I will bless You as
I follow the Voice of truth.
Great are You, who call us to
to the healing balm of forgiveness.
Each generation must learn anew
the efficacy of silence,
the wisdom of turning inward,
That your Light might be their
guide to holiness,
and your Love nurture them
Yet, many there are who turn from
You in fear,
denying their birthright.
Their denials will lead them further
loneliness will companion them.
The Beloved is gracious and merciful,
allowing every soul free will
with abiding love.
Gratitude and quiet joy overflow
as I recall the abundant
blesings of your grace!
Lift up your hearts, all you
who choose the path of life!
My heart is lifted up!
"Do you not know that your whole
encompassed by my love?
I am the infinite and the eternal
within your soul;
O, that I might make Myself
known to you!
Choose Love that you might overcome
oppression and blind obedience
to false idols!"
"Diving Light shines in those
who live in Love.
I shall uphold all who are
burdened by fear,
and raise up all who call to Me.
The time is nigh for you to choose,
for great is the new dawn
that fast aproaches;
I call each of you to open your
inner ears, to
see with spiritual eyes,
And to trust that even amidst the
all is working toward the
wholeness of humanity."
O, Heart of my heart, envelop me!
I know You are near to all
who call upon You.
Bring to my recollection all that
I have denied,
that I might be accepting
To help rebuild the soul of the world
with radical trust, love,
When I speak, let it be of
blessing and gratitude;
let your glory within me shine
out to the world!
>>>> + <<<<.
1. Read the Scripture passage for the first time. (It
helps to read it aloud softly.) What phrase, sentence or
even one word stands out to you? Begin to repeat that
phrase, sentence, or word over and over, allowing it to
settle deeply in your heart. Do any insights begin to
arise? Do not expand these insights right now; this can
be done at a later time. Simply return to the repetition
of the phrase, sentence, or even one word, savoring it in
2. Relish these words; let them resound in your heart.
Read the passage as often as you wish, learning these
words by heart as you continue to repeat them in your
3. Let an attitude of quiet receptiveness permeate the
prayer time, an openness to a deeper hearing of the Word
4. As you continue to "listen" to this phrase,
sentence, or even one word, a prayer may arise
spontaneously in response. Offer that prayer, then return
to repeating the word in your heart.
5. When you find that you move beyond the meaning of the
phrase, sentence or word to the gift of the divine
presence of the Word, rest in God as long as the Presence
or attraction remains.
Note: These steps are not separate, but flow into each
other. There is no hurry to finish any particular chapter
or verse; it is more important to listen deeply to God's
word to you at this moment.
To extend the practice: After the resting, take the
phrase, sentence, or word into your daily activity and
listen to it, reflect on it, pray over it, and rest in it
as time allows during the day. Allow it to become part of
List vs.'Real People'
The list is the list is the list. I try not to do too
much to it. It's a place where a person can come and be
tested and pushed, but nobody should be abused. It's not
an easy place, always. But I know that people who spend
time here find that any other 'spiritual
setting' is a piece of cake. If you can make it here you
can make it
anywhere. This place forces one to find equanimity or to
split the scene. In any case, a break from here is always
good. I try to make
Marcia: Perhaps you mean to say any other
spiritual list is a piece of cake. After all, this is a
mail list. I don't consider a mail list where we don't
even meet in person is much of a threat to one's ego
structure if that is what you mean by 'making it.' It is
squiggles on a computer screen. Real people in real
proximity is much more real.
Christiana: Several times you have inferred that
this list is somehow not real for you, as community, as
teaching mechanism .. merely squiggly lines.
Each time, I have internally noted how this appears so
differently for me. Gene has often asked us to
investigate if we are real or hypothetical. It has taken
me time to begin to understand what this question points
to. After 20 months of being *here* and the rather
awesome internalized echoes of where I meet the spectrum
of energetic words spilled into this *place*, I have
observed the following:
There is a significant difference in the movement of,
what I think Gene means by "hypothetical"
(which I have referred to as surface heart), from that of
the "real" (or Deeper Heart). I have always
known this, yet it was known within the singularity of my
own individual container. Entering here is a form of
entering a collective container. Each variant voice, met
within... either as sympathetic or antipathetic
movement... has been like a single instrument playing
alone suddenly finding itself in a full orchestra with
harmonics and dissonant notes all of one piece. The
hypothetical.. assuming this is what we refer also to as,
egoic structure.. has learned more to yield it's assumed
movement of leaning only into it's own image. This
yielding has occured as a direct consequence of the
internalized met tonal and atonal notes of where each
squiggly line has been known and dissolved within.
Meeting such a plethora of positions, has resulted in the
neutralizing of the charge of any position. So the
"hypothetical" daily becomes more a balloon
losing air. And as I observe the dead air being released,
it is always subsumed by fresh air.
You speak of lists vs "real people in real
proximity", and I find, in the most real way, for me
I see no difference. Sure, there are other
facets of knowing which are absent in this way of being
with each other, yet the core movements.. the dance of
the hypothetical and the yielding to the real occur
continuously no matter which forum we find ourselves
The "threat to the ego structure" seems to
necessitate a willingness to allow this to occur. I honor
that for you this has occured in "real people"
exchanges and do not mean to contradict your experience.
I merely want to give voice to, that for me, it has
occured very vibrantly as I allow this list energy to
move through and dismantle the shell of me.
** The second piece seems to relate to whether the list
as "community" is also a hypothetical. While it
may be quite true that from the lens of the personal,
much can be projected into such a community, it has also
been my alive experience, that we are meeting on living
currents; and communion and direct knowing occurs in
language which needs no squiggles.
I have recently been in a variety of "settings"
and what is most alive is never the sounded language.
This is true for me here as well. I also have listened,
in such settings, to voice which echoed mine a few short
years ago. That this voice is silencing within me is no
small thing. The day that I left town, Xan posted a
response to a post of mine. She asked " What is the
simplest way you could say this". I thought about
that on my trip and what kept occuring is.. observing
movement... observing the movement which is a lie and
what arises in its place. Yesterday, with Rob Rabbin and
a small gathering, I found myself saying that life now
feels like a continuous entry into a parted Sea. It opens
before me, closes behind me and the lifeforms on the
surface and surrounds are noted, yet have lost their
imperative call... their compelling movement.
Such is the Grace of this place for me. And *you* are a
very real and most appreciated facet of this Grace.
posted on the NDS list:) My dictionary defines compassion
as: "sorrow for the sufferings or trouble of
another, with the urge to help; deep sympathy;
My heart defines compassion as: nothing to do with sorrow
or suffering or sympathy. It is a movement of Being,
which knows, with no belief, that beyond the appearance
of flaws and brokenness and masks, we are the same. It is
an employment of the energetic Eye of sameness, blazing
through the narrow eye which thinks it sees an appearance
It is not a choice.. it just is.
next day, Christiana revisited what she wrote above:
it very interesting to look at how we use words and the
metaphors of meaning we have aligned with them.
Last night as I read the posted dictionary definition of
compassion, I noticed how mismatched it felt with how
I've come to live that word and sat down to look at what
it means to me (sans etymology).
Then Andrew mentions "passion" as akin to
suffering, and I note that passion is a term I use more
akin to enthusiasm (en theos with God, avec etymology).
Since joining this list, I've held a deep inquiry into
the ways that the word suffering is used. I've often
resisted this word, thinking "I'm not suffering,
what do they refer to?". Then the other day, this
posted on the Jean Klein list:
"Every moment in which we wish things to be
different than they are, we are suffering. Every moment
in which we are not facing What Is, we are
And I saw more clearly the endless moments of Shmee (my
friend Elysha's term for screaming me) and recognized the
endless subtlety of attention shifted to the foreground.
As I reflect here, I see that compassion, as ordinarily
used, is foreground behavior to foreground behavior
(civility); yet there is an unshakable background
awareness which has been solidly with me since childhood.
So, I'll modify my words of last night, as I do notice
choice involved. It is choice to lift the "magnetic
needle of attention" from the impermanence of the
foreground and allow the viewing field to open in
David Hodges posted this quote from Ramana in his
"Your duty is to be and not to be this or that. 'I
am that I am' sums up the whole truth. The method is
summed up in the words 'Be still'. What does stillness
mean? It means destroy yourself. Because any form or
shape is the cause for trouble. Give up the notion that
'I am so and so'. All that is required to realize the
Self is to be still. What can be easier than that?"
And it seems to me that to know this, is at the core of
compassion. To re-mind the flotsam of appearance, of this
inherent duty simply by living from there.
This passion (God, I AM) is what I rest in. It is quite
simple to be there with self or with other. Compassion is
merely reminding mind of suchness, upon which
impermanence dissolves. And that surely aligns with
Gene's Socratic reflection of the "truly" good.
Tonight as I continue
lighting my first Advent candle.. I am joined by the
celebrative lighting of the first Menorah candles of
The first candle lite is called the shammus which means
"servant". The lighting prayer is:
Barukh atah Adonai, Elohaynu, melekh ha-olam
Blessed are you, Lord, our God, king of the universe
Within my, somewhat self created, evolutionary
meditation, I reflect this week upon the Mineral
Kingdom.. I hold in awareness the minerals crystallized
in our planet, our bodies and in our natures. I take my
'shammus' (servant) and walk into the inner mine. The
light reveals the inorganic gifts, infrastructure of
formed life ... the very 'core' to be stripped to, to be
in awe of. In my hand a quartz crystal... held by
crystallized bone structures of support. What a miracle
these structures which support us. The light also,
however, reveals the mineral essence in my humannature..
a place, perhaps where crystallization and hardening is
not desired, a place which might need deep mining or
'undermining'. Where are the metallic tones of voice, the
bitter hardened roots?
I ask again, what wants to be birthed this year, what
needs to be emptied out in readiness? May the structure
of my character be strong enough to act as chalice.
This Wednesday: The Stillpoint
As many of you know,
this week is an unusually good time to abide, to
meditate, to clear out the dross, to surrender with
reverence... to rest in I AM.
This Wednesday is the Solstice. The Stillpoint. The time
when the rhythm of the season is in breath pause before
it's slow arc back to renewed life in the Spring. The
pulses of Life are quelled and we, if we attend with
inner organs of perception, are poised to receive.
This particular year bears a phenomena worth noting. The
Solstice distance is counterbalanced by the Lunar
proximity. Some say the deeper radiance of Mother
Light... of the feminine. I have attached information
about the lunar dynamic below.
I submit, with humility, that we consider what it might
be like to enter the Nonduality Salon or Chat with pure
awareness of the Background, poised to receive what might
want to emerge within our collective body.
submitted with Love, Christiana
FULL MOON DECEMBER 22, 1999 -- This year, a full moon
will occur on the winter solstice, Dec. 22, commonly
called the first day of winter. The last time a full moon
on the winter solstice occurred in conjunction with a
lunar perigee (point in the moon's orbit that is closest
to Earth) was 1866.
Our ancestors 133 years ago saw this. Our descendants 100
or so years from now will see this again. The moon will
appear about 14% larger than it does at apogee (the point
in its elliptical orbit that is farthest from the Earth)
since the Earth is also several million miles closer to
the sun at this time of the year than in the summer,
sunlight striking the moon is about 7% stronger making it
brighter yet. Also, this will be the closest perigee of
the Moon of the year since the moon's orbit is constantly
deforming. If the weather is clear and there is a snow
cover where you live, it is believed that even car
headlights will be superfluous.
Eyes on Ram Dass: A Report from the Inner
(March 20, 2000) returned from the Inner Directions
Gathering... a gathering of 500 people, some remarkable
teachers, music, chanting, humor, Rumi and fellowship of
being. All this amidst the beauty of La Jolla, with the
roaring surf under a full moon.
There is much to share, but for now, (it has been)
suggested that I might share my reflections about being
with Ram Dass.
For me, as for many of us, Ram Dass has been a guide, a
teacher, an elder, for over 30 years. This is my first
experience of being with him since his stroke. It was
painful, poignant and opened my heart more than anything
he's ever offered before.
He came on stage in a wheelchair with long hair and black
glasses. One side of his body seems relatively paralyzed.
He announced that he'd been 'stroked', and later added
that he'd been 'stroked by his guru'. He announced that
he now suffers from aphasia (a loss or impairment of the
power to use or comprehend words resulting from brain
damage). He said that he is not doing well. Forced to
lose his identity as 'holy man', he sits quite human in
His mind now, like a beautiful bird with one clipped
wing. Again and again, for several hours, he tries to
take flight of idea. Again and again caught in midair
unable to catch the current. Mind is not connecting the
dots and sentences are left in midair.. incomplete. The
evening is a cluster of incomplete sentences.. incomplete
thoughts endeavoring to communicate. One witnesses his
Then his good friend Krishna Das and his entourage, who
are also on stage, begin to perform their magical Hindu
chants, and Ram Dass joins them with his heart, body and
soul (a term he now uses frequently).
Many years ago I heard him say.. "People ask me
about reincarnation, and I always respond.. why be
concerned about reincarnation, most of us have not yet
*incarnated*." Now he says that his body has forced
As the chanting continues, he removes the black glasses.
Apparently he has recently undergone Cataract surgery..
another sobering irony from the founder of SEVA
organization which raises funds for Cataract surgery in
Third World countries.
Taking off his glasses, he leaves mind behind and moves
with his heart.
My heart's tears join his as I realize the profound love
this man has always offered.
He is now an exquisite mirror for us of our brokeness. I
watch many not want to look. The crowd thins as people
become restless, tired, perhaps not getting what their
minds think they want. Not seeing what he offers.
I watch these thoughts also arise in me as the hours
extend, and I realize that I have never before been in
such a presentation. Observing this mind's discomfort, I
recognize that we are not accustomed to broken sentences,
to dangling thoughts, to incoherence. We are accustomed
to semi-complete idea packages. Yet again and again, I
see that what he is now offering is perfect dissonance to
break the pattern. I kept returning to my heart and my
heart kept expanding with his.
It was a beautiful and painful honor to sit in this
humble brokenness, profound teaching and Love with this
man. And from the shards of thoughts, a Presence is
communicated beyond what he was attempting to say, yet
which includes his new offering. He sees with new eyes
and speaks of three eyes.. the body, soul and divine..
speaks such from a voice deeply embedded in each.
Blessings to you, Ram Dass.. dear friend.
Tolle at Inner Directions Gathering
One of the
primary draws for me to this conference was the chance to
again be with Eckhart Tolle. I spent an evening and some
private time with him last November, and experienced in
his presence a deep dropping into stillness. He embodies
and transmits the fullness of mind stopped.
We spoke briefly on Friday night and again I readily knew
the fullness of the present. There were several *alive*
presentations on Saturday. In my work, I meet many
authors. Occasionally, there is a disconnect between the
author's work and their presentation. I experienced none
of that this weekend. Rob Rabbin and Lama Surya Das were
delightfully authentic. Byron Katie gave a powerful
presentation of her "Work". Adyashanti offered
such a clear presentation that one felt his sharp sword
cut through the dross of illusion and moments of pure
essence emerged. Michael Green's reading of Rumi
accompanied by stirring music was a blessed ending to the
Yet for me, and for the entire gathering, on Sunday,
Eckhart Tolle touched the deepest tonal note. He received
an immediate standing ovation. It is difficult to
articulate what is so powerful and unique about this man.
Much remains below linguistic sculpting. What I can say
is that his precise use of language to disassemble
structure is as phenomenal, as is his capacity to speak
After he spoke, I could not rejoin the assemblage. He had
taken me to a place where no further words were necessary
or desired. I thus missed the presentation by Rabbi Rami
I went for a long walk along the beach and delighted in
the Sandpiper's play along the shoreline. They were my
next natural teacher as I observed them scurrying in and
out of the tides ebb and flow. I thought... how like we
humans.. dancing with Leela. Then suddenly a large wave
crashed and just as the water's edge was about to
overtake them, they immediately took flight on the
currents of the wind. A masterful display of natural
awareness segued powerfully with what I had just
witnessed with Eckhart.
and Unbounded Awareness: Recent Observations of
Nonduality Salon List
silently observing the antics on this list this past
week.. quite a show.. we've seen intelligent posts;
slanderous posts; courageous posts and fluid posts.
I am left with a question. What is the intention of this
list? My understanding was that this place was created as
a consequence of slander and rigid pompous thinking on
another list. My understanding was that this was a place
where people were free to share what arose to share.. be
it delusion or awareness and to have fellowship to learn
more about each through honest *dialogue*.
Jerry you say this list and 'reality' are not
'spiritual'.. how are you defining 'spiritual'? I do not
define this word as form or dogma or rules but as the
working of Consciousness as it plays out in human form.
Pierre Teilhard de Chardin:
"You are not a human being in search of a spiritual
experience. You are a spiritual being immersed in a human
I think I understand your intent to keep this a free
place. The creative imperative of Consciousness operates
both in impeccable order and in ambiguity and messiness.
It can not be contained by human thought structures. As
such I understand what Bruce says (below) about 'removing
the underpinings'. Yet I also hear Dan and Gene speak
eloquently about the need for awareness of timing and
language. Are we not collectively being asked to listen
and speak to what Gene calls 'the single conversation'?
Does not our collective freedom hinge on guiding
ourselves and each other into this 'voice' beyond the
I have extracted some writing from the past few days
which I feel offer important guidance not towards being
'bad' but towards becoming truly free as we collectively
see through the idea of self and grok 'Only Self'. If by
'bad' you refer to the radical upshift out of the
confines of the banal entity, leaving it to implode, then
I might understand your reference. This shift is a
movement of Love, which Marcia describes as a sword, and
I add it is a sword free of personal attacks.. it is a
sword of clear perception.
Gene: The hidden joke, is that the 'casual listener'
cannot hear this powerful language, and thus cannot hear
their own voice and how it participates in the single
conversation; the casual listener is conditioned to
listen only to predefined 'word-objects', and to ignore
the meanings stated by everything else. It is the
aggregate voice of everything, speaking all at once,
which is the vast song of harmony which sings 'us'. We
are in the literal womb of our creator, continually
nurtured, and given every opportunity to 'get with it',
and yet, the casual observer persists in missing this
The 'world-dream' has nothing to say about this 'one
thing'; those who derive identity from world-dream
identifications, cannot 'afford' to 'hear a single
thing', for at the moment the 'single thing' is actually
heard, the world-dream pops like a soap-bubble.
Dan: Understood from a position inside a boundary,
boundaries divide and lead to fear. Understood from no
located position, boundaries simultaneously divide and
unite, define and connect. Fear is the result of placing
oneself within a boundary. Love is the way boundary
functions when no entity is placed within a boundary.
This boundary defines me and you, unites me and you, and
shows that there in only love - neither me nor you. My
original skin: the meeting of time and eternity.
Gene: Boundaries themselves have this property; every
boundary indeed defines what is distinct, and by doing
so, opens the possibility of perceiving what is similar
or even identical.
This is a very subtle point to make; I am saying that
boundaries can be seen to exist as challenges to perceive
that what is apparently distinct, discrete, or separate,
are also similar or even identical.
** Language is a set of filters (properly called
grammars) which are used exclusively to create
distinction; it is difficult to use language in a way
that makes distinction work to illustrate similarity.
"Things are not as they seem; nor are they
Discussions of similarity use distinction-creating words
to 'prove' similarity by a process of eliminating
difference, to the point of revealing similarity. In
reality, only words create this distinction, but few
speakers have mastered the art of using words in a manner
that does not inherently lead to separation. If we could
'learn to talk' in a manner that could transcend the
usual inherent effect of words, we could speak without
creating illusory boundaries between ourselves.
** Living in love, is so delicious, that one will not
threaten their own allowance to do so; that is why, the
patterns of speech of those who actually live in love,
succeed in persistently communicating the essence of
love, to those who read such words. The artist is making
a subtle plea to the reader, to give up the life of
separation in favor of the life of love, and to husband
this conversion, by disciplining the speech of self, to
remain within the constraints of liberation. The artist
is pleading with the reader, to learn to speak in a
similar manner, thus to reform the deepest inner thoughts
and assumptions. So reformed, language is naturally used
as a force to open, rather than close, the mind and heart
of those who are listening.
** In this freedom I form me /organise/organize, Does my
spell checker check spelling, Or does it check the spell
that is upon me? Innumerable bits, each one poised,
calling; "Choose me! Choose me!" Yet, I intend
to purport, to report, to retort, And yet, not unaware of
this vastness, Seek to arrange every bitte into forms
which please, Thus to garner the attention of one who is
imagined By me, To be like me; To form a union, discover
likeness, to verify myself, To offer a mirror, so to
speak, yet this mirror already has My own face in it; do
you look like me? Or if not, do you, At the least, see
If you see like me, I am joyed, but then, how boring; It
is in difference that mirrors truly shine, Otherwise, why
compare? Needless is comparison, yet it is pursued, as
though Something good will happen; Yet the stresses of
the search produce only a majority Of differences, the
sameness secretly known beforehand, And on the game goes,
life in movement, meanings pasted Upon void, imaginings
accused and praised, as though There might be one that is
real, one that is bedrock, Unmoving, a point of reference
by which our judgements Can be validated; each imagined
boulder, however, Becomes a particular particle of
speech, reduced To insignificance, upon the alter of
Dan: Hi Bruce. For me, it's not a matter of who's right,
but more a wish to look at "techniques" -- and
heavy confrontation seems to me to be a technique, unless
it flows naturally from a trusting and open communication
in which the confrontation will be heard as caring.
Industrial-strength, intense confrontation often triggers
defensive reactions, hurt, feelings of rejection. Unless
someone has a relationship of trust and knows
confrontation will be heard clearly, confrontation is
likely to lead to entrench continuing cycles of defense
and attack, rather than dispell illusions.
I'm not at all against powerful statements or
confrontation, by the way, but I do think timing and
connection of the parties involved is essential for such
communication to be fruitful.
Timing is very important in "teaching." Without
appropriate timing and clear communication, tendencies to
anchor in illusion are likely to be strengthened rather
than exposed or "vaporized".
Gene: How you characterize me, man; as though your words
are actually representative of 'how I actually am'. You
might mean to say, that 'I am that way, for you'.
** Ego can, however, be co-opted; it can be enlisted 'in
_ Inclusion/acceptance by a group (family or social)
_ Defense of any values implanted prior to age of arising
of speech (individually AND collectively)
_ Identity (personal and collective)
Ego which has been so 'co-opted' is indeed problematic,
but the problem is not with ego; it is instead, with
individual awareness, which uses _strategy_ to work for
(imagined) gain. I say again, that to denounce ego, is to
speak against oneself. To speak against oneself, is
suicidal; to speak against oneself, is to obliterate
To speak against oneself, is also to imagine that the
speech of others, which may be directed against self, is
actually penetrating self. To assume that the various
insults, brickbats, etc, hurled by others, are literally
effective weapons, is also a tragic act of
If the integrity of the cells of the digestive tract are
weakened or lost, large molecules of foodstuffs may enter
the circulatory system, producing allergic reaction, or
possibly fatal anaphylaxis.
Similarly, ego is designed to enable balance, especially
during stages of growth leading to maturity.
Thus, ego is not a problem for the immature, and for the
mature, it is 'just there'.
Gene: Interpenetration is possible, but ONLY when there
are discrete, IE separate 'entities' (bodies, minds,
cells) to enact this interpenetration. It takes an
"I" and a 'thou' to enact this sort of
Penetration implies boundary, does it not? Mutually
allowed interpenetration can be the first step toward
realization of an actual 'boundaryless' awareness. But
this does not do away with the need for integrity of all
boundaries of cell, membrane, or ego. Indeed, it is this
very needed integrity, which allows the possibility of
realizing 'unbounded awareness'.
Neo: Wouldn't it be nice if everyone could support each
other and get along?
Bruce: Emphatically not at the expense of honesty.
N: Is unity not the goal?
B: No, seeing *what is* is the goal, and that never
happens until at all until the nature of goal-seeking is
Neo: There must be a lot of fear here on this list.
Bruce: That much is true. The list is the world.
** Then you realize there's nobody from whom to beg
forgiveness -- there's just you and the mirror showing
you your pretense, your elaborate self-image.
** The whole image of "working out their
differences" is illusory -- look at the world, where
when folks are "working out their differences"
they are actually angling for an edge, trying arrive at
something that looks fair but actually confers some sort
of advantage. Negotiation is war in which both sides have
forego gross physical means of murder and instead try to
kill each other with faux kindness and Machavellian
politesse. Nondual realization obviates all such
conflict, overt or otherwise, by removing the
underpinnings in one "swell foop." :-)
** Imposed unity -- whether by gross physical force or
social/psychological coercion such as peer pressure -- is
also conflict. The absence of the trappings of war is not
Dan: Yes - and "****** !!!! :-)" suggests that
it is urgent to realize this "no choice"
situation. Suggests there are many ways to delay, avoid,
postpone, and to keep the cycles of avoidance going
around. We have an innate ability to entrance ourselves
with our words and concepts, mesmerizing ourselves in the
secure warmth of self-perpetuated belief. "We"
remain at our imagined center, and only "no
choice" will remove what has never been there.