nonduality salon presents:

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.

Christiana Duranczyk


On Spiritual Apathy

Lectio Divina

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 Gathering

Integrity and Unbounded Awareness: Recent Observations of Nonduality Salon List

On Spiritual Apathy

Your 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 for you.

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 own way?"

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 presume to
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 need."

And while I wholeheartedly agree.. there is still here a human who is graced when this is met in living presence of another.

Lectio Divina

Psalm 145

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
childlike wonder,
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
toward wholeness.
Yet, many there are who turn from
You in fear,
denying their birthright.
Their denials will lead them further
into alienation;
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
being is
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
outward chaos,
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
and free
To help rebuild the soul of the world
with radical trust, love,
and wonder!

When I speak, let it be of
blessing and gratitude;
let your glory within me shine
out to the world!

>>>> + <<<<.
Lectio Movements

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 your heart.

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 mind.

3. Let an attitude of quiet receptiveness permeate the prayer time, an openness to a deeper hearing of the Word of God.

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 you.

Email List vs.'Real People'

Jerry: 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
weekends list-free.

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.

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 within.

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.


Someone 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; pity."

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 of difference.

It is not a choice.. it just is.

The next day, Christiana revisited what she wrote above:

I find 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 suffering."

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 awarness.

David Hodges posted this quote from Ramana in his journal:

"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 Chanukkah.

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.

December 20, 1999
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.

New Eyes on Ram Dass: A Report from the Inner Directions Gathering

I've just (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 wheelchair.

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 angst.

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 him to

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.

Eckhart 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 gathering.

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 from Presence.

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 Shapiro.

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.

Integrity and Unbounded Awareness: Recent Observations of Nonduality Salon List

I've been 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 experience."

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 personal?

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 thundering

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 different".

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 like me?

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 another's offering.

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 service of':

_ 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 immunity.

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 self-weakening.

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 intercourse.

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 fully understood.

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 peace.

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.

nonduality salon