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#1984 - Tuesday, November 23, 2004 - Editor: Jerry
In the U.S.
later this week, people will be celebrating the holiday of
Thanksgiving, which was originally designed to represent a
communal expression of gratitude towards the Universe for the
abundance of existence and the possibilities of unity and
spiritual meaning in daily life. Like many things in today's
world, it has become somewhat commercialized and trivialized,
though not as completely as other holidays.
For the fifth year in a row, Petros is encouraging devotees to reinforce the spiritual basis of this day by preceding and following it with a day of fasting. The money saved by not eating on these days should be contributed to some worthy and appropriate cause. The energies released by this fasting will also help to make the holiday itself more meaningful and less of an egoic indulgence.
Satsang with Godzilla
It is my great pleasure to inform you that Godzilla will be visiting the United States this month to offer Satsang to the public.
Godzilla has traveled all over Japan giving his blessings to countless seekers. He has been described by his closest disciples as one of the most authentic and loving creatures you'll ever meet. Before awakening, he spent many years in Italy with his Teacher, Gorgonzolla, who allowed him to experience completely and totally his own rage and fury.
Godzilla does not offer a prescribed set of beliefs or concepts. He only asks that you surrender fully to his embrace, in which all that you think you are, including your body, dissolves.
Hope you all will join us for what should be a truly spectacular occasion!
In Service to this Monstrous Love,
Quotes from Godzilla
"You are not what you look like."
"If you find you are lacking fire in your life, here is your opportunity to experience it fully."
"Let yourself fall into my mouth completely. This is the opening."
"The thought that you are not good enough (to be eaten) is just a story."
Godzilla's Satsang Schedule
December 3, 7:30 pm in Central Park
Saturday, December 4, All-Day Intensive in Central Park
For information or to sign up for the Intensive or private sessions with Godzilla, contact Godzilla, 917-GOD-ZILLA.
In the Life of the Indian there was only one inevitable duty, - the
duty of prayer - the daily recognition of the Unseen and Eternal. His
daily devotions were more necessary to him than daily food. He wakes
at daybreak, puts on his moccasins and steps down to the water's edge.
Here he throws handfuls of clear, cold water into his face, or plunges
in bodily. After the bath, he stands erect bfore the advancing dawn,
facing the sun as it dances upon the horizon, and offers his unspoken
orison. His mate may precede or follow him in his devotions, but never
accompanies him. Each soul must meet the morning sun, the new sweet
earth and the Great Silence alone!
Whenever, in the course of the daily hunt the red hunter comes upon a
scene that is strikingly beautiful or sublime - a black thundercloud
with the rainbow's glowing arch above the mountain, a white waterfall
in the heart of a green gorge; a vast praire tinged with the blood-red
of sunset - he pauses for an instant in the attitude of worship. He
sees no need for setting apart one day in seven as a holy day, since
to him all days are God's.
Ohiyesa, Santee - Yanktonai Sioux 1911
This is a book review appearing the new Noumenon Journal:
AN ANTHOLOGY FOR AWAKENING 365 NIRVANA HERE AND NOW Living Every Moment in Enlightenment, edited and with commentary by Josh Baran.
(Hardcover, 404 pp., London: Thorsons Element, 2003, $19.95)
If you are
seeking the spiritual understanding that would finally end your
search, the open secret
is that there is no movement to make that would capture a kept secret. As Wei Wu Wei has said,
'What is not kept secret is a secret, and what is kept secret is not a secret at all.' Or as the
author/editor quotes Yuanwu: 'It is right in your face. This moment, the whole thing is handed to
That is the
thesis of 365 Nirvana Here and Now. The purpose
of the book is to reveal the secret
through celebration of it in the form of a wide variety of quotations, and through guiding the
reader toward its understanding. The result is that this may be read as two books: (1) a very short
book consisting of 16 pages of introductory material along with an 11 page dialogue section at the
end of the book, entitled 'Afterthoughts', and (2) a long book consisting of 365 pages of quotes
from a wide variety of sources.
short book' establishes the presence of a spiritual teacher in
this reading journey. The
book is not merely 365 pages of quotes. The power of the book lies in the presence of a teacher who
is asserting his presence throughout. Because it is not enough to point out the variety of ways the
open secret is ex-pressed; the seeker has to be guided toward understanding these writings.
from the 'very short book' that the author Josh Baran is a
consultant in New York City. He has handled public relations for Bill Gates, the Dalai Lama, Byron
Katie, Amnesty International and other institutions, individuals and corporations. He began his
spiritual search at the age of 14 when he became suddenly preoccupied with the experience of
'non-stop mental turmoil'. By age 19 he became a full-time seeker, exploring various traditions
and teachers, finally choosing to devote himself to Zen Buddhism. Baran became a Zen monk and
priest, leaving his community after 8 years, displeased with its extremely authoritarian culture.
years of independent exploration followed and culminated in a
meeting with Tulku Urgyen, a
revered master of Dzogchen. About that meeting, Baran writes, 'I saw how much of my life's energies
had been focused on looking forward to some imagined future, rather than simply celebrating the
all-pervasive present.... All I needed was to take to heart Tulku Urgyen's words, "Simply let be in
naturalness without technique, without artifice.'' After the meeting, Baran 'hungered for the words
that were alive with realisation and that reflected the timeless view that Tulku Urgyen had pointed
out. Slowly, I began gathering writings.'
collection of writings making-up the bulk of this book, the
au-thor/editor says, 'See
where these words point and then drop them - com-pletely. What the Buddha, Jesus, or Zen Masters
realised has nothing to do with your own understanding. In the end, it is all just story and
deepening the reader's understanding, the 'very short book' makes
two gestures: First, the
author guides the reader's attention to an experience of the present moment, which leads to the
inquiry, Who am I? This brings an awareness of 'presence-aliveness' which Baran says is known as
Nirvana, the Now, Enlightenment. This guided movement of attention takes only two pages of text and
is effective. However, some might say that while the experience of pure awareness isn't that
difficult to have, living from it is another story. Hence the second gesture.
addresses 'living from it' in a section of the 'very short book'
which includes excerpts of conversations he had with friends regarding the book. The dialogue
begins with a questioner asking, 'So now what? What can I do to live in the now?'
Notice how right away we want to move, shift gears, set goals.
But I suggest that instead of
developing any kind of spiritual plan, you pay careful attention to the thoughts themselves. What
is our mind doing when you ask the question, 'What can I do to live in the now?'
'Afterthoughts', what Tulku Urgyen imparted to Josh Baran, Josh
attempts to convey to the
reader, plainly and directly.
short book' of 27 pages could be read first and portions of it
re-visited now and then
while reading the 365 pages of quotations. In that way the reader is always referring back to the
guidance of a teacher who could help the reader correctly understand the quotations.
quotations themselves are from diverse sources. The famous
spiritual giants are represented.
So are current living nondual teachers. So are people from outside core spirituality. Ordinary
people are also represented. At least one quotation is from an 'ordinary person' writing to an
email list on nonduality. Going through an alphabetical listing of names, here are some examples
selected to show the variety: Pearl Bailey, Alan Ball, Jacob Boehme, Truman Capote, Cezanne,
Dostoyevsky, Natalie Goldberg, Woody Guthrie, Jack Kerouac, David Loy, Henry Miller, Deena
Metzger, Mary Oliver, Anne Sexton, Jason Shulman, Alice Walker. There are approximately 300 authors
featured, including scriptural texts and almost all the nondual teachers and Masters with whom
readers of this publication are familiar, from Adyashanti to Ken Wilber. Each author is showing, in
his or her way, their 'love for reality', as Byron Ka-tie might say.
summarise, 365 Nirvana Here and Now consists of
365 pages of quotations and 27 pages of teaching
material through which the author guides the reader toward understanding the quotations. The
quotations crisply support the theme. The result is a focused yet mainstream teaching of
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