|Dr. Robert Puff|
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The Nondual Highlights
Three things in this issue: an invitation to a retreat with cee, which I've mentioned before. Link to an interesting video showing photos and actual film of Ramana Maharshi. Third, a dialogue with the teacher known as bindu.
The Way of
Knowledge Meditation Retreat with Cee is being held
Further details such as the day-to-day schedule are available as a hard copy brochure. If anyone would like one mailed to them, write me at [email protected].
Archive films and photos of Ramana Maharshi: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fvIlhN0frdY
[Editor's note: bindu conducts dialogues on MSN Messenger, and what is shown here is such a dialogue copied from Messenger. I've deleted some non-essential information to protect the identity of the questioner. --jk.]
dear friends i thought that this is a nice chat that some may like...
with love and respect
Merry Christmas to all... and be safe in the new year...
bindu: Namaste how are things?
sadhu: Hello I'm doing pretty well. I was just reading your Bhairava tantra and also seeing how the version I have compares.
sadhu: I have the Swami Stysangananda Saraswati version called The Ascent.
bindu: mm. i have not seen that one
sadhu: I don't understand either of them very well in places.
bindu: how long have you been into yoga?
sadhu: I like the methods that expand spaciality. I have been meditating since 1971, but wish I had made more progress. About 35 years.
bindu: mm... can i ask your age?
sadhu: When I began, I meditated a lot, about 8-12 hours a day and did that for about 10-12 years. Then about 1-3 hours per day after that. I'm 60 years old.
bindu: mm... i see.. do yoiu have children ... married. etc?
sadhu: Married. No children. Wife also meditates.
bindu: uhuh, where in the world do you live?
sadhu: I'm living in [deleted]
bindu: what is your profession in your life?
sadhu: In school, I majored in engineering physics, but didn't work as an engineer long. Before that, I played music. Now, my wife and I teach Quantum-Touch, a method of healling.
bindu: ah! excellent.... so hence the focus on method (your interest in bhairava ) what instrument do you play?
sadhu: I play guitar, sing, recorder, a little keyboard, etc. Yes, I feel like I could have made more progress if I had understood more how to practice.
bindu: mmm: so i take it you had no formal teachers in yoga that is...
sadhu: I first did the TM thing and took it as far as it went, with the siddhis, etc. Then I read and met Ramamurti Mishra, then studied a bit with Sharon O'Hara, but was difficult to understand her methods. I also met and took some teachings from Ravi Shankar, the pundit.
bindu: uhuh, i don't know of sharon o'hara
bindu: Have you studied siva sutra?
sadhu: Sharon and Patrick O'Hara (patrick deceased) was instructed by Yogananda's teacher from the other side.
bindu: mmm,: i see.
sadhu: I read your version of the Shiva sutra just recently and liked it. The 3 sections of it. I have also read the Gita of course and the Bhagavatam, a version from Motilal Banarsiddas.
bindu: mmm. So would you say you resonate somewhat with the idea of krishna, and or the existence of deity?
sadhu: Yes. I resonate with Krishna and existence of deity. Mishra gave me the name Shri Rama Govinda, but I don't use it in this society, but it confirms my interest in that form. I also like Shiva for his compassion.
I have noticed with all the teachers that have been teaching, and all of the students, that not many have reached the goal, or even it seems made much progress.
bindu: oh yes that is very true and often quite sad. Have you read or studied the Ramayana?
sadhu: Yes, my wife and I are reading the Ramacharita Manasa in the evenings at bedtime. It's Tulisidas' version of the Ramayana. She hasn't read it before, but we are slowly going through it.
bindu: excellent.... do you know, that like the Gita ... it is about the inner-quest to free the soul from the ego?
sadhu: Yes, although it appears to be stories. It seems to be interpreted as Rama (spirit) and Sita (manifestation) in a play.
bindu: yes. Just as in vaisnaivism there are referrences to Radhe and Krishna (same idea again) in fact this idea runs thru-out all hindu works.. The following and practice of which comprise hinduism ( the Hindu's themselves know it as the Sanatan-Dharma )... many many ways to refer to the same dual-nature of being and consciousness.
sadhu: Yes, lately I've been on YouTube listening to Nithyananda talk on the Bhairava Tantra. But he's just getting started. I was looking for some good translations so I could understand and choose a program of methods to move me forward faster.
bindu: mm, i see.
sadhu: I was trying to discover which methods are the easiest and most fruitful and which ones could be combined. Mishra used to say that combined methods bring combined power. Also which sequence would be most successful.
bindu: Have you ever seen or read anything by Ramana Maharshi?
sadhu: No, not that I remember. Maybe in a bookstore.
bindu: mm. how about non-dual philosophies?
sadhu: I presume you mean Ramana Maharishi. I have seen photos, but I wasn't drawn to him at the time.
sadhu: Did he write on the Bhairava Tantra?
bindu: No i think not... his focus was mainly on one-on-one and simple direct and pithy discourse.
I must appologize for all these questions they are intended to get a feel for the composition of your understanding as regards the philosophy ..
sadhu: I didn't get to pursue all the teachers. I tried to stay with the ones I learned from as far as I could go. But maybe I should have been more eclectic. I've read many of the eastern and western scriptures and I feel like I understand them. I am just not yet at the experience of them.
bindu: mmmm ok.
sadhu: I found Misra's "Textbook of Yoga Psychology" (Patanjli's Yoga Sutras) and "Fundamentals of Yoga" to be the best I have read so far. Now I am learning about Tantra which I had discarded before, being told it was mostly a lower, sex oriented method. I did not understand the higher Tantra.
sadhu: In your experience, what are the most valuable methods of practice?
bindu: Well, in all the books you have read there is an underlying thread running thru all - the thread is one -pointedness; either expressed as single devotion or as persistence in one form or another.
bindu: My path is about one-pointed use of the WILL in a certain way... it is a path that is all inclusvie or integral..
sadhu: Play has not been a big part of it. And Tantra seems to endorse bliss and play more. How does WILL fit in.
sadhu: I presume you mean will, not as effort or force. Tantra doesn't seem to endorse force very much.
bindu: Well Siva sutra Siva says that ... "By non-contemplation of ME are you bound"
bindu: so the path is about developing the Will to remain in constant meditation upon the indwelling self (Siva) even while going about in everday life; this results in freedom in all modes of consciousness; but make no mistake it is HE who is free it is not the Jiva.
sadhu: Yes, it seems that we have to become as familiar with consciousness as we are with matter. How is WILL applied to remain absorbed in Self?
bindu: This Self-absorption is called sahaj samadhi, the emphasis is not upon the bliss-consciousness < as this bliss is the mind-body reaction to the connection... it is not the realization the challenge is to remain free in all modes of consciousness (again Siva Sutra Says" HE" (Siva) " is free in all modes of His own consciousness.
This freedom is got by developing the Will to remain in the Self. The Will in all of us is what the sutra calls the iiccha-Sakti. Developing this one-pointedness is the most powerful, best and fastest way to realization.
sadhu: I understand Turiya as the state underlying all states. I experience some degree of this continuity. What exactly is will? What is WILL?
bindu: mmm. Well normally people say "MY WILL" as if it belongs to the jiva.......... (to who they think or define themselves as)
sadhu: Yes, and willpower is the assersion of commitment. But I think you are referring to something deeper.
bindu: they even say "MY MIND" as if there is another who HAS a mind .......... my body my arm, my emotion, my love, my heart ...... and so on . as if there is another . they say 'i" "me" mine" etc... that one that is referred to in all those lines above is the ego... the jiva . the so-called individual soul.....
sadhu: Yes. I understand the nature of the small self and it's narrow identification.
bindu: But dear since there is no such thing as a self that is separate from THE SELF, the little self is an illusion hence so is the limited will. For example the sutra says that by referrence to himself as jiva-self.... "HE (Siva) is limited in both will and efficacy";
sadhu: Yes. But how to plug into the Will of the higher Self?
bindu: The 1st step is to come to understand how the jiva does not exist as any-self aware being or existent entity then we can move on.. but until this is fully understood and accepted we can only go arond in circles....
sadhu: Yes, I understand that it is an illusion covering the higher Self. The sense of separateness is not real. But it is experienced as "real".
bindu: mm. so then if you are willing i would like to introduce you to some concepts which are really out there...
sadhu: Yes, I would like new concepts.
bindu: yes it is... but these pages will give you a different slant on it http://www.upnaway.com/~bindu/yogicfire/jiva/jivaindex.htm
bindu: if you find them to your liking we can proceed to erase the problem in your sadhana.
sadhu: I'm looking at the page, be right back.
bindu: However it is my experience that most people have the flaw of thinking that they (themselves) can realize the truth... that is impossible.
sadhu: I will have to take some time with the page. I do understand the the jiva is Spirit and that jiva doesn't realize Spirit, but becomes IT when the obstacles, the mis-identification ceases.
bindu: good good... but the jiva does not BECOME it dissolves into the whole like ice in water.
sadhu: How to break that false identification with externals?
bindu: You cannot ..It is like unto being in a room that has no doors.. there is no way out.
sadhu: Yes, I like the idea and experience of melting into the absolute.
bindu: the only way out is IN -- how to do that?
bindu: 1st no one can do anything.. so then one never DID anything ... going inward one sees that all this is inside The Self.... it is displayed in HIS conscious being AS His consciousness-light-existence.
There are 1st the emotional levels which get more and more sublte then we come to the astral planes... ALL within HIM.u: then we see that there is no physical world at all.. it is in fact all spirit. then we see that it is emanating from His conscious being; in fact His being is also existing as consciousNESS which takes the form of a universal light body all within His CONSCIOUS Absolute < i am not saying absolute consciousNESS as that is an incorrect way to think of it ... as if his conscious being were an aspect or attribute of somehting else for example consciousNESS is had by or noticed by some being or other; while the conscious absolute is an open ended oneness that is infinite which has existence displayed within it like a dream or multiplicit reflection of its own nature (omniscient omnipresence which is the definition of an infinite being) in short existence IS ITS ACTUAL CONSCIOUSNESS while it itself is beyond consciousness. Hence the referrence to SELF which is made by saying my this or that or I AM this or that is implied in the saying.
sadhu: So there is this Conscious Presence which is the container of everything. And this conscious presence creates consciousness upon which this world is a projection made out of the same stuff.
bindu: Not exactly correct.What you say is correct, but there is a slight error..
The conscious ever present transcendental being does NOT ACTUALLY CREATE, as if by an act of WILL; existence exists AS it... it simply comes into being as a result of the existence of the Self.... the Self does nothing. thus also the karma that is said to belong to a being is not belonging to that being at all, it belongs to the Self, the karma simply m,akes the jiva what he is and gives him his nature... additionally since the karma of all beings belongs to the self so also does the Kriya and the jnana.
For example in gita Krishna says : "Oh Arjun, all things exist IN MY POTENCY". His existence in Himself prior to the Smanifestation of existence is comprised of HIS potency or potential... < this is his omnipotent WIll or as Siva sutra calls it " It is HIS iiicchaa - sakti (Will potency and power).
This shines forth AS existence, it is also called tejesa .... it begins as the nila-bindu and by multiplicit reflection within itself and within each reflected particle of the 1st it builds up the whole cosmos ... it just IS.
Then what exists, exists
- because He appears in it AS it; it is named the mother or radhe
or such. Another example is that in upanishad, it is said He
created the world and sent His sakti into all of existence as the
female he then decended to the world and fornicated with her in
This means that the wWill and consciousness create existence. The consciousness is called sri tripura
given a female aspect ... the Will is Siva existing in ALL beings.
bindu: Sita (the soul) is seen as His female... God made eve from Adams rib etc..
bindu: So then when we practice the high tantra. we can use visualization of gods making love inside us thru our bodies..... or we can use the one-pointed focus of directing the WIll to the self itself.
The latter removes the jiva from the picture, while visualization of the gods is to remain an observer existing as jiva and is hence selfish.
sadhu: So how is the Will applied to resolve the false identification and allow the Conscious Being to shine forth as us? What is the "method" that causes "directing the Will" to the self.
bindu: 1st we have to understand that THE WILL so - to - speak IS NOT OURS..... hence it is NOT "THE WE" who directs it...
we have to let go of the ridiculous idea that WE (the jeeva ) have free will.
sadhu: Yes, the WILL is not an attribute of the small self. Yet, something must allow this WILL to become active.
bindu: yes... we will see...To come at an answer to this i will come at it indirectly.......
We said earlier
that the iichaa-sakti manifests existence as a matter of
course simply because HE exists... that sakti enters all beings
as the WILL .. .the WILL impels the jiva to evolve to the
realization of Himself.... this causes ALL evolution... physical,
spiritual and genetic.... it manifests as the countless beings in
both form and nature.... on all levels and lokas (this is how he
is omnipresent and omniscient ... knowing Himself on all levels
thru all beings )...... hence it does NOT BECOME active..... it
bindu: so then when the sahdu is ready He will come and make the jiva reflect His wisdom in a certain way so that the mirror shows Him His true identity.
sadhu: Yes, so how do we as "jiva" cooperate with the Divine to allow this transformation?
You have reached this evolutionary state.... hence here we are. So then the how of it is this>>>
1st understand that no
process, method, practice... or attitude that the jiva can employ
will assist him
bindu: he has to totally give up all ideas that he (the jiva) can achieve it .... because the very idea is an oxymoron.
Jiva wants to be free, but to be free he has to lose his limited beingness or die to the idea that HE IS JIVA.So then he has to teach his mind to reside in the Self.... but that too is very difficult ... because the mind and jiva arise simultaneously - they are like conjoint-twins.
So then...... now we come to the indirect part. let us take a step back.
1st we should notice that HE who IS INSIdE ALL beings ....... is the only one who speaks...... it is HE who says "i" "me" "mine" or "i am " etc.... there is NO such being as the jiva saying this..... indeed the referred to being (who is indicated in all the above references as if it were an entity) is the jiva.... hence the jiva cannot refer to himself.
So then, the "I AM" who exist in all beings IS ACTUALLY SIVA or THE SELF! So to come at it indirectly we should approach the one-pointed focus with this understanding.
We must come to accept THE SELF AS SELF instead of suscribing to Jiva as Self.
bindu: We do this by Japa of a mantra that states this fact.... in short we simply reprogram the minds idea of selfhood via positive and affirmative statements..hence mantra.
bindu: Again due to the fact that the Self in all is THE SELF,there can be no free WILL owned by jiva... hence it is the WILL of the Self that is employed in the one pointedness to recognize Himself.So it is the actual implementation of self recognition. This is the essence of vijnana-bhariava.
sadhu: i do not exist, SHIVA, SELF exists and operates through this body.
bindu: Yes, and thru all
bindu: So then,all the dahrana's in the tantra lead to the recogntition that the WILL must be employed to do the practice... so do not do the practice ... use the source instead...ie. the iicchaa sakti ... turn it back upon itself this alone will suffice for very fast progress.....
Also understand that
meditation is not for its own sake or for the experiences.. it is
for the developement of the WILL the same applies to hatha and
iyenga as well as the early stages of Patanjali yoga. Hence He
attains freedom in all the modes of His own consciousness. That
freedom consists in the recogntion that He is already free in all
as the Self.....
this promotes acceptance, love, tolerance, and compassion for all beings since they are the Self.... here then is where knowledge becomes ignorance and love becomes wizdom.
bindu: Thus a man who has gotten rid of himself lives as a normal being but internally that man is not himself, he has lost himself, he has gone beyond as the tibetans say... this is self-realization.
It is not that anyone got enlightened... the SELF is always enlightened. He is Siva, Vishnu, God, Jehovah, Krishna or whatever else we want to call God.... He is not that MAN, or JIVA. He is clothed in existence itself... but removing the clothes yeilds no-self who has any limited being that can be known in any language because language appears IN HIM.. it is nto the other way around... HE appears AS language AS mantra AS Being and consciousness.
bindu: Dear you might
like this poem......
sadhu: Why is it that WILL needs development if it is Shiva's? It is already WILL fully or not.
bindu: ah! ... good good good that you see this
sadhu: I'm reading the poem.
bindu: so then we have spoken of the 1st step; You are talking of the 2nd step now...
bindu: >>> Why is it that WILL needs development if it is Shiva's? It is already WILL fully or not.
sadhu: I will come back to the poem. It's a bit long.
bindu: sure, as you wish.
bindu: The 2nd step is to transform the mind by the recognition of what you just stated... so then hold the focus upon that idea and surrender into the idea that the correct stance in relation to the 2nd step is to recognize that to move out of that idea as if you exist is to subscribe to Jiva as Self...
bindu: so in this level the recommendation is to remain in Self and to cease trying to become (go out of the Self)
bindu: since you are already the Self existing as existence... practice of this is to let go of all ego-based drives....
bindu: become nothing, remain as nothing;this is not negation of something, nor is it nihilism. It is based in the truth of the sakti as described above. It is to remain in the potential, focussed lovingly upon the Self.
Thus Japa is very useful here; to that end i give my students this mantra.
bindu: Om.... Soham ... Om
bindu: it means: I AM .... I AM HE ... I AM.
bindu: in english Om means I AM (i exist as THE I AM )
bindu: Soham is the CONSCIOUS SELF (Siva, God etc) So we do japa of it.
bindu: Om....pause reflect between breathes ..Soham ....pause reflect between breathes Om ....pause reflect between breathes .. repeat.
sadhu: OK . I reflect on the meaning.
bindu: Do this mentally silently in every moment that your mind is free of involvment in the outer world.
this>>> I AM .... I AM HE ... I AM. Do not let it refer
to the idea that the ego is HIM
but that the referrer is HIM existing as existence.
sadhu: That allows the WILL to come from that side.
bindu: YES! exactly.
sadhu: OK to share this with my wife?
bindu: of course, or who ever you like..may i ask to put it on line as it might be useful to others?
sadhu: Thanks for your help. I'll read the pages you sent. Yes. You can use this discourse any way you like.
sadhu: Thank you.
bindu: __/|\__ welcome
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