|Dr. Robert Puff|
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#1927 - Monday, September 20, 2004 - Editor: Jerry
This issue features the final excerpt from the newly published book, The Nature of Man According to the Vedanta, by John Levy. This series constitutes the first lengthy quotation of Levy on the internet; there is virtually nothing else at present. Also there are quotations from the thoughtful Alpha World list. And there is an installment of In Nonduality Salon.
The Nature of Man According to the Vedanta
by John Levy
from Chapter XXIV: The Verbal Expression of Non-Duality
I remarked in a previous chapter ... that although non-duality abides as the substratum and the reality of dualistic experience, we cannot be aware of it when our attention is turned outwards. It may then be asked how one can speak of non-duality so as to convey its meaning to others; for in order to speak or even to conceive of it, we must, as in fact we unwittingly do, become merged in it, just as in order to "remember" a dream, we must re-enter the dream and leave the present waking-state. Between being merged in non-duality and speaking of it as clearly as words allow, there is no causal relation but what may best be described as sheer reciprocity uniting distinct levels: it could in a way be compared to the reflection of a person's mood in his countenance. But the power of conveying the truth, without effort and in perfect harmony with a seeker's aspiration, is not possessed by all those who have cancelled ego and met the true self. That one alone who by nature is so eloquent and loving, has realized non-duality and dismissed the body, who therefore has nothing to gain or lose by teaching, yes, only that rare being is able to talk of reality and so guide others.
from Chapter XXVI: Non-Duality
The Disparity of Consciousness and Objects
The seeming relationship between consciousness and its object must always remain unintelligible, for if we view them as distinct entities, they are found to be wholly disparate; and if we regard the object from the standpoint of consciousness, its objectivity disappears... . This difficulty has often tempted shallow or lazy thinkers to reverse the true position. They say, since we cognize the object directly and seem merely to infer the existence of an intangible consciounsess, that the former alone is real and the latter a convenient figment. I hope to have made it clear, in the course of this work, that such a stand contradicts the considered evidence; and that consciousness is no more an invention than the luminary whose light makes visible the page before us. All that has been said, or will be, regarding this matter, may be summarized as follows: that unique principle whose existence cannot be doubted, whose being depends on no other, and which is immutable, that alone is to be called real.
~ ~ ~
The Nature of Man According to the Vedanta
by John Levy
Order this book at http://www.sentientpublications.com/catalog/nature_of_man.php
"All emotions are pure which gather you and lift you up;
that emotion is impure which
seizes only one side of your being and so distorts you."
Rainer Maria Rilke
~ ~ ~
The creation and sale of most art today is pure
prostitution. The comparison is true in
every detail. Real art can only rarely be created even by a real artist; like a child in
a mother's womb, it is the ripened fruit of his prior life. False art, though, can be
ceaselessly produced by craftsmen, according to the dictates of a market. Like a faithful
wife who loves her husband, real art does not need any excess decoration; like a
prostitute, false art demands to be decorated. True art comes out of an artist's urgent
need to express the feelings that have formed inside him, just as a mother needs to give
birth to her baby. False art answers only to profit. Real art brings new feelings into
our life, as a woman brings a new person into the world. False art corrupts; it makes a
person dissipated, distracts him, weakens his spiritual power. Everyone must understand
this, in order that they shun the terrible proliferation of this dirty, dissipated type
of art which is, on its face, prostitution.
Leo Tolstoy, "A Calendar of Wisdom"
~ ~ ~
It is a descending stream of pure activity which is the dynamic force of the universe.
Kabbalah (B.C. 1200?-700? A.D.)
~ ~ ~
"The more we love our friends, the less we flatter them;
it is by excusing nothing that
pure love shows itself."
~ ~ ~
"It is astonishing what force, purity, and wisdom it
requires for a human being to keep
clear of falsehoods."
~ ~ ~
"Everything you can imagine is real." Pablo Picasso.
ICQ # 238728919
In Nonduality Salon
The Highlights of the Nonduality Salon list from between August, 1998 and May, 1999, the period of time prior to the creation of The Highlights.
~ ~ ~
Some time ago, I said to Marcia; "But what about that
observer?", and it was days after that, that she said to someone, "I think
it is all alive".
Now Madhya writes that "knowledge is bondage", and Jerry posts a quote from
VALIS by Phillip K Dick, concering the Living and Sentient Universe. In the
(Gnostic) schema proposed by Dick, "we" suffer the "noise" of a living-dead
universe of bondage, and struggle to attain healing from the damage which
that mechanical universe has produced.
I say, that there is no liberation without bondage; that the Gnostic schema
of evil VS good, that of the realization of the good against the background
of the evil, and the Christian mythos of the retrogressive 'power' of satan
VS the redeeming Power of Jesus Christ, is nothing less than the map or
description of "our" rise to sentience; that embedded within our sentience
is the record of our arising, and that bondage is what we have arisen from.
That we have access to our chains (knowledge) is a natural consequence of
"Our" evolution 'took' NO time, as we understand time; yet, in that
'no-time', all of the events of our birth and growth have occured, and we
worshipfully live in deep respect of our nature; we are in the thrall of
our own wonderful nature. We think that we obsess about it, but it is
really love; we complain, but it is really respect. We worship the legs
which have carried us to this place, even as we eat them; that is the
The suddeness of our arrival has an impactful momentum upon the Urth, yet,
our fulfillment is done now; we are observing the wake of our arrival.
Still, nothing happens; it is all done. It is the realization of this
completion which is the seeing of the alive and aware ALL in which this is
all happening; and it is happening against the backdrop of 'evil', the
'noise' of so-called 'history', and the scenery of decay which is the
"Our" intuiting of the so-called "big bang" is generally incomplete; by
this I mean that as there was a 'beginning', so there WAS an end; it has
already ended, and this is all a record, which we are reading; this is a
story, which we are telling to ourselves. It has already happened, yet in
reverence, we choose to live in this history, for it is the body of the
pyramid upon which rests "The I"; I cannot blame anyone, for weeping in
gratitude for this, sentience. There is a sense of it being unlikely, to
itself, and thus has invented 'grace' as the name of the elevating/edifying
power which has birthed us as us. Yet, we say "I Am", as though we are the
very Gods which arranged this whole thing.
I am the root, the body, and the flower; I am the seed, and the soil in
which I grow. I consume (transform) myself as I continue, yet as I
continue, I recognize that this is what is happening; I recognize that this
is my nature, not one thing or a progression of forms, but all form that
has ever been; and that I am all that will ever be; therefore, I must love
I abide as all of this, and as I am alive, all of this is alive; one big
throbbing standing-wave pattern, seething with life, and constantly
shedding what was. That, is what is.
Amnesia is the veil of fear; and fear is the remnant of failure. Yet,
sentience has succeeded, and has cast aside the veil of amnesia. This
remembering is who I am.
~ ~ ~
Pushing nondualism along
This list, this gathering, continues to push the envelope of
We are not confined by specific scholarly conversations, or by one
leader or another, or by any one kind of religious perspective. We
embrace sex, dolphins, UFO's, Nisargadatta, and who and whatever
radiates real and free nonduality.
Please bring a friend here! There is no place else in world,
as far as I
know, where anything like this is being done is such harmony. Nondualism
is so little known, as it is so hard to understand, and yet we build
sandcastles on the beach of our knowing. That is something.
The following is from David Deida's writing on nondual sexuality:
The contemplation of death strips you of all false pursuits.
and dreams are over. No children, no family. No work tomorrow. Nothing
to look forward to. No future to wear. You are naked in this moment,
feeling fully, with no veil of time to hide your vulnerability. In the
true contemplation of death, your heart stands bare in the present
moment. With no excuse but to be present, your heart gathers strength. No longer
dispersed in dreams of future fear or hope, your heart's force becomes
coherent. Without a shell of waiting, without the buffer of tomorrow,
unclothed of expectation or fear, no longer waiting for things to be
different, you can fully be the love you are, right now.
To deepen sex, feel this moment in the immensity of what comes
and after your individual birth, and make love.
While having sex, feel your precious partner. Feel your
body. Feel the love you can magnify through your sexing. Feel all of
this while remembering your death. Actually imagine your heart stopping
right now, in the midst of sex. Give the gift that would be your last
gift of love, the giving that would leave you complete in death, nothing
~ ~ ~
SRI RAMANA MAHARSHI ON THE ESSENCE OF NON-DUALITY
Discern at every step that I am whatever is beginningless, conscious,
unborn, primal, resident in the Heart-cavity, unsullied, and transcending
the world, whatever is pure, peerless, desireless, beyond sight or other
perceptions or even mental apprehension. Because we think we are in the body
we also believe that we are born. However, we do not think of the body, of
God, or of methods of realization in our deep slumber. Yet in our waking
state we hold onto the body and think we are in it. The Supreme Being is
that from which the body is born, in which it lives, and into which it
resolves. We, however, think that we reside within the body. Hence
instruction is given. The instruction means: "look within." Consciousness is
not born at any time; it remains eternal. But ego is born; so also the other
thoughts. Associated with the absolute consciousness they shine forth; not
otherwise. . . .Liberation is to know that you were not born. "Be still and
know that I am God."
Contributed by Harsha
~ ~ ~
The following is from a dolphin 'confession' by Peter Russell:
"Over the following years I swam with dolphins whenever I
opportunity. They have repeatedly reminded me of several
important principles, not the least of which is the value of letting go
of wants and desires. "
For the whole story (it's only a page in length), please go to,
~ ~ ~
Last week, on a very narrow two lane country road, I saw a car
heading directly towards our car at a very high speed for a head on
collision. A young man apparently frustrated by three cars ahead of him was
trying to pass them in a strict no pass zone. I pulled my car as much to the
right as I could to make way for his car and stopped completely. This
allowed just enough time and room for the oncoming car to pass the three
cars and avoid hitting our car. After the critical moment had passed, I
started the car up again and we resumed on our way. Later on I thought that
by giving way to others we give them peace and we give ourselves peace.
Similarly, when we give way to the Divine and give up everything including
our very being to the Lord of the Love, He reveals Himself in the Heart as
Our Own Self, the Great and Full Presence of Love, Existence, and Eternal
~ ~ ~
just a thought...
It's important, I think, to realize that wherever we are, Grace has a
plan to take us elsewhere.
~ ~ ~
No matter what technique is used, I believe, spiritual
awakening is a
matter of intense devotion and grace. In my view, Americans are all
too often looking for get something quick and for nothing schemes.
We are often searching for the perfect technique, the guru claiming
to transmit enlightenment by little more than a touch and so forth.
I believe that any and all paths to enlightenment involve the
devoted and passionate intentions, hard work, and Grace--this last,
most of all. Grace endows realization--nearly one hundred percent of
the time, after years and lifetimes of hard work and commitment.
Love and devotion,
~ ~ ~
On the altar
As an altar boy we wore long red cassocks with lace tops and a
cape. Looking a little like the frillnecked lizzard I saw this morning in
the light rain running almost upright past the banana trees. It was always
so hot in those holy rags.
To my devoutly Catholic parents an altarboy was seen as an
to the priesthood, one step closer to the Godhead. Particularly in this
small country town.
Up there on the altar you became identified with the sanctity
service, the smoky rituals, the elaborate processions, the impenetrable
sadnes of funerals, the ineffable mystery and archetypal power of the
eucharist, the joyful leaping upon the thick white cord of the tower bell.
Here in God's house I tasted silence and the grace of the Mother Mary. And
One day, leading the procession with a very tall and heavy
hehe, I tripped over the genuflecting legs of the priest and very nearly
scalped a fellow apprentice.
At the eucharist time, the focal point of power in the whole
mass, on cue I
would furiously ring handheld bells as the water and wine turned into the
body, blood, heart and soul of the Divine. Being so close to the action, I
remember always being curious to see if the wine REALLY did turn into the
Blood of Christ. But no, we verified this on occasion by scoffing the
remainder back in the vestible... invariably a rich, sweet red wine, as the
parishoners filed out into the blinding light of the day.
To this day I struggle with the public face of
transubstantiation. How can
essence change? By Grace alone? Faith / belief systems may change, I always
felt essence cannot. Essence is Divine.
Perhaps like others on this list, I felt the mystery of this
being so veiled in ritual and dogma, direct access into the Divine Heart
seemed sanctioned only through the edifice of the church and the
priesthood. So when I grew too big for the cassock, I sadly walked away
becoming a pilgram in search of mySelf.
I simply add to this discussion what I felt as central to the
energy of the eucharist. Yes, similar to Buddha's flower teaching, the
eucharistic presence reveals a radient love, which I now relate to as
consciousness itSelf. We can drown ourselves in theology, symbolism and
cultural form, failing to see the eucharist in its naked beauty.
Representing the surrender to and embrace of the Divine,
played out through
an intermediary as a means of collectively and individually focusing upon
the dissolution of self into love. ringing those bells for freedom,
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