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HIGHLIGHTS #1289 - Sunday, December 15, 2002 - Edited by Gloria

photo and haiku by Al Larus

Who's in charge of this?

Look at the moon
smiling again at this nights kiss,
forget me nots from galaxies.



I am not a writer,
just hanging on, waiting,
next to a dark stream
for something to appear

deep in the forest,
who is whispering;


clouds are drifting
through reflections of the sky,

in the dew at dawn,
passing silence on

to the eagle of the mind
with claws like steel

holding the universe
it soars within

Million Paths

Jnana is given neither from outside nor from another person. It
can be realised by each and everyone in his own Heart. The jnana
Guru of everyone is only the Supreme Self that is always revealing
its own truth in every Heart through the existence-consciousness 'I
am, I am.' The granting of true knowledge by him is initiation into
jnana. The grace of the Guru is only that Self-awareness that is
one's own true nature. It is the inner consciousness by which he is
unceasingly revealing his existence. This divine upadesa is always
going on naturally in everyone.

-Sri Ramana Maharshi, from The Power of the Presence


Joyce: From "The Little Prince"

"And now here is my secret, a very simple secret:
It is only with the heart that one can see rightly;
what is essential is invisible to the eye."

"What is essential is invisible to the eye,"
the little prince repeated,
so that he would be sure to remember.

Gill:This is beautiful, and calls to mind this from Rainer Maria Rilke:

"Put out my eyes, and I can see you still,
Slam my ears to, and I can hear you yet;
And without any feet can go to you;
And tongueless, I can conjure you at will.
Break off my arms, I shall take hold of you
And grasp you with my heart as with a hand;
Arrest my heart, my brain will beat as true;
And if you set this brain of mine afire,
Then on my blood-stream I yet will carry you."



It's usually tomorrow in Palestine
before anybody here
has thought of what
could be easily done
to reduce poverty and fear.

It's usually tomorrow in Tokyo
before anybody here
wakes up to what has happened
to their neighbors from afar.

It's usually tomorrow in Melbourne
before anybody here
has bothered to think where wool comes from
and why sheep are so dear.

And it's usually tomorrow
right where we stand today
when we know
what we should have said
and done just yesterday.

December 15, 2002
Brian Fitzgerald

Million Paths

"The essential the process of relabeling. That is, you
take your present egoic state and learn to constantly relabel it
as spiritual, divine, and sacred-relabel your ego as the Goddess,
relabel it as the sacred Self, relabel it as the divine Web of
Life...One ends up relabeling the subtlest reaches of the ego as
Divine, and that is the new spiritual paradigm"... In other words,
the Web of Life becomes a web of lies. This process of relabeling,
and the emphasis on feeling within....spirituality tries to turn
the sacred into something that we can have and claim for our own
narcissistic desires. And Wilber's point holds for far more than
what we call the New Age. This relabeling of the ego and its
motives as spiritual can corrupt all forms of spiritual pursuit.

A snip from a book review of Ken Wilber's Boomeritis by Elizabeth
Debold, an article in the magazine "What is Enlightenment"


Wanted: Messiah

Don't be afraid
to not be human.
It's ok, really it is...

Human is a dream
into the psyche
of a splinter
of spirit's consciousness...

not much new to add
you know the rest...

‘Prison Street’ is a dead-end.

K-man used the metaphor,
we waste most of our lives
deciding and caring about
the wallpaper on the prison walls
rather than the dilemma
that we are in a type of prison...

And if anyone were to figure it out
(so to speak only)
no one could be left behind to suffer...

we'd all wake as One...

One for all,
all for one
and directly relevant
to everyone's experience.

Who's got the winning lotto ticket
so we can all cash in the jackpot...?

Messiahs anyone?
Yoo hoo, ...Messiahs?

Someone step up to the plate please
cause all I hear is talkers
(I'm one of them)


...suppose I’ll have to put up
or shut up.
(as usual)

ViSIT ~InKBlot Poetry~

(new-improved *correct* link)

Advaita to Zen

New name! The group home page location:

The Korean Zen master I studied with, Nine Mountains, used to
exclaim with gusto, 'What is it?'

This, his main koan or Zen conundrum, was boldly calligraphed in
Korean as a hanging scroll on the wall.

This is an intense, heartfelt, visceral question: 'What the hell is

That was his whole teaching. What the hell is going on? What is
this? Who is this? This is a fundamental existential question,
turning our exploration inward. What is this presenting itself
right now?

from: Awakening The Buddha Within
by: Lama Surya Das

Million Paths

From p.115 of "The Matrix and Philosophy", edited by William Irwin;
article by Gregory Bassham, "The Religion of the Matrix and the
Problems of Pluralism". The Wachowski Brothers Transcript may be
seen at

Dr. Bassham says, "One of the most prominent themes in The Matrix
is the 'emptiness' or illusoriness of empirical reality as we
ordinarily experience it. This theme is sounded most clearly in
the Zen-like 'there is no spoon' speech of the Buddhist-looking
child 'potential' in the Oracle's waiting room: "Do not try and
bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead, only try to realize
the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the
spoon that bends, it is only yourself." The illusoriness of
empirical reality is a fundamental tenent of Hinduism, Buddhism,
and other Eastern spiritual traditions. In Christianity, by
contrast, the notion that phenomenal reality is an illusion is
generally rejected as inconsistent with the existence of an
all-powerful and truthful God".

Gregory Bassham is Associate Professor of Philosophy at King's
College, PA. You can see him climbing a tree at Nice!

Direct Approach

Greg: Well, it's getting slimmer. First there was only working,
then there was function, then work, now it's only Silence. Where
do you stop?

Sitrite: All I'm saying is there is can be work without A
Personalized worker. Work working Silence don't forget being
Doing. lol Stop! am I mis-communicating?

Greg: No you're not mis-communicating. Yes, there can be working
without a worker - everyone has seen it, been in the "zone" for
bits of time -- in sports, meditation, sex, music, a compelling
movie, etc. The ironic thing is that the zone is always the case,
even when there does seem to be a personalized worker in the
picture. At that time, the zone just looks a bit different, that's

Is There a There in Cyberspace?

What is missing? Well, to quote Ranjit Makkuni of Xerox PARC, "the
prana is missing," prana being the Hindu term for both breath and
spirit. I think he is right about this and that perhaps the central
question of the virtual age is whether or not prana can somehow be
made to fit through any medium but the act of being there.

Prana is, to my mind, the literally vital element in the holy and
unseen ecology of relationship, the dense mesh of invisible life,
on whose surface carbon-based life floats like a thin film. It is
at the heart of the fundamental and profound difference between
information and experience. Jaron Lanier has said that "information
is alienated experience," and, that being true, prana is part of
what is removed when you create such easily transmissible replicas
of experience as, say, the evening news.

Obviously a great many other, less spiritual, things are also
missing entirely, like body language, sex, death, tone of voice,
clothing, beauty (or homeliness), weather, violence, vegetation,
wildlife, pets, architecture, music, smells, sunlight, and that ol'
harvest moon. In short, most of the things that make my life real
to me.

Present, but in far less abundance than in the physical world,
which I call "meat space," are women, children, old people, poor
people, and the genuinely blind. Also mostly missing are the
illiterate and the continent of Africa. There is not much human
diversity in cyberspace, consisting as it largely does of white
males under 50 with plenty of computer terminal time, great typing
skills, high math SATs, strongly held opinions on just about
everything, and an excruciating face-to-face shyness, especially
with the opposite sex.


So... does virtual community work or not? Should we all go off to
cyberspace or should we resist it as a demonic form of symbolic
abstraction? Does it supplant the real or is there, in it, reality

JERRY KATZ NDSN [email protected] <[email protected]>

Story and photo here:

Hillside Strangers

Trabuco Canyon monks brace for major changes to their quiet lives

by Matt Coker

If grape vineyards covered the rolling hills below, you might think
you were standing in the shadow of an old California winery. Brick
walls, large windows, Spanish-style archways, red-tile roofs, bell
tower—it’s the architectural style that inspired Taco Bell. But
this is no winery. The small black sign emblazoned with the words
"Ramakrishna Monastery" next to the winding dirt road that leads up
to this place tells you that, and so does the black sculpture in
the middle of the courtyard. It depicts a man sitting in the lotus
position. Before him is a koi pond where a small, mirrored pyramid
bobs in the murky water.

Just beyond the sculpture is a bench, and beyond that a row of
trees, and beyond that the rest of the world. A suburbanite’s
immediate inclination is to squint—to see if you can make out
civilization in the distance. The sun’s reflection bounces off a
multistoried building miles away. Then something much closer
catches your eye, maybe a mile distant: hundreds of
identical-looking white stucco homes. From here, they seem stacked
atop one another and, from the Ramakrishna Monastery, wildly out of
place. But the incongruity doesn’t stop there. Point your nose
down—stop just before your chin hits your Adam’s apple—and a
smaller subdivision of the same identical white stucco homes is
much closer still. With a strong gust blowing at your back, you
might be able to heave a golf ball far enough to hit one. They
appear to have sprouted up like devil grass, slowly spreading
toward your begonias.

In some quarters, they call this progress. ( see link for complete story)

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Nonduality: The Varieties of Expression Home

Jerry Katz
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