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Jerry Katz
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#2810 - Friday, May 11, 2007 - Editor: Jerry Katz   

The Nondual Highlights -  

One: Essential Writings on Nonduality:    

Three articles: an introduction to an email forum on practical/mystical noduality; an excerpt from a new book of Nisargadatta's talks; an entry from James Ford's blog. Ford is a Unitarian Universalist minister.      

Today's Highlights is also being sent to the Compassion13Hz_Earth2012 list:  

A review of posts tells me this list is about practical/mystical nonduality. There is channeled literature, ways of manifesting things in reality, revelations regarding occult evolution, all with a grounding in nondual knowledge. The list description says:  

Compassion on Earth by 2012. Compassion Frequency = 13 Hz = 13 cycles per second. Celebrating the Mighty "I AM PRESENCE" IN ALL OF US. Namaste means I greet the "I AM PRESENCE" in you.     

Here is an excerpt from Gleanings from Nisargadatta, by Mark West, from talks given during 1976-1977. Mark's introduction, the afterword, and interviews with Mark make the book more personal to the reader, give the dimension of storytelling and human interest. The chapters are brief, a page or so, and each one sets forth the teaching of Nisargadatta, the teaching of nonduality, in a different way. A slim and valuable volume that is not well known.  

The book may be ordered from

1977, April 22  


Whatever you "are not" (body, mind, intellect, etc.), you have accepted and actually stolen as reality and because of this, there is some fear. However, when you know for certain your true state, you will be able to move about anywhere without fear. If you can really and truly see yourself as you are, then there is no more fear of death or anything else.  

Whatever you have (and you have a type of false courage), you say "my body, my mind", etc., but in reality they are not yours at all. You have claimed ownership of things which are not truly yours. You are at all times different from these things. In the dream-state someone says something to you or tells you something, but neither the person who tells you nor the person who listens is real, for both are in the dream only. That is exactly the situation here with us at the moment. I am the teacher and you are the listener, but this is so only in dreams or illusion. When you awaken fully, there is neither teacher nor taught.  

Once I have realized the nature of this consciousness of I am, how it has appeared on my true state and that it is truly only an illusory thing ... when I have fully known and realized this, then the consciousness of I am (within which is contained the vast universe), dissolves or merges into Me. In the light of this consciousness of I am, this vast universe if formed, but the light of this "I" consciousness is nothing but a reflection of the light of the true state or Reality.  

The consciousness of I am is the world, and there is nothing wrong in seeing or witnessing this world. The mistake comes in only when you take it to be real, as we almost all wrongly do. After you emerge into the waking-state from the dream-state, you automatically negate the dream and say it was unreal, it was only a dream. Similarly with this waking-state in which we perceive this vast universe with all its stars and planets, etc., it is also only a dream, so I say, awaken to you own Reality. Wake up! Stop dreaming, that is all.  

This world has truly never existed at any time, whatsoever, it was never really created, it is a dream! So know this, realize this only! That is all. Once you fully imbibe this understanding, nothing more is necessary, and no more questions or doubts can or will possibly arise. Can anything be so simple, yet so sublime?  

Satya Sai Baba says that he is an incarnation of a certain earlier Sai Baba of Shirdi, and he says that he has come to redeem the world, and so I respect him for this, but I know my true nature or position in which there is no world to redeem.  

He has come to redeem an illusory world, so I say good luck to him; in that sense I respect him. So ultimately we here discussing things that have never happened.  

Gleanings from Nisargadatta, by Mark West    


Monkey Mind

Adventures and ruminations of James Ishmael Ford, mostly featuring reflections on religion (particularly Unitarian Universalism and Zen Buddhism) as well as a little on politics (mostly progressive). This blog is also a commonplace book with a random sprinkling of quotes, mostly about the spiritual life.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Between these my life flows

So, there I was, at the culmination of the whole trip, my former intern Chris Bell's installation as minister of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Santa Rosa, the congregation I was a member of when I went off to seminary. A lot of water has flowed under the bridge in the ensuing twenty years. Among other things they sold the old building and have purchased a movie theatre right in the middle of thedowntown – a courageous act considering our Western UU style of going for putting our churches in the beautiful grove at the end of a long and winding road somewhere in the countryside. They've done a very good job of making the old theatre into a sacred space, and it was obvious to me that with just a little time it will be something very special for the congregation and for the larger community.

Among the dignitaries there was Santa Rosa's mayor who expressed the city's gratitude for this commitment that the congregation has made to being a presence within the city. There were various speakers, some quite inspired. Probably my favorite, certainly the one whose words I most clearly recall was the UU minister of our Sacramento congregation Doug Kraft. He gave the charge to the minister, both humorous and deadly serious all at the same time. He framed it within a reflection from a twentieth century Hindu teacher, Nisargadatta Maharaj who said: "Wisdom says I am nothing. Love says I am everything. Between the two, my life flows."
I found those words taking my breath away. I felt it was the most eloquent "elevator speech" any UU could hope for. "Wisdom says I am nothing." Unitarianism, with its relentless analysis, mostly intellectual, but also ever offering the opportunity to take the mind to its greatest depths: toward a glowing no-thing, a non-dual encounter with what is. This is wisdom as I understand it. But right on that, the assertion of the heart, the Universalist way of deepest reconciliation: "Love says I am everything." Here reality as love asserts itself, that sense of something larger within which we all rest. It is the other classic way of our liberal religious inheritance.

Then, following close upon these assertions, the major invitation, what can really be, if we're willing to let it, to be our contemporary spiritual path: "Between the two, my life flows." I felt inspired. The service ended, I could only stay a little while as I had to drive down to Oakland from which I would leave quite early the next morning. But I got lots of kisses and hugs.

Rita and Chris stayed for another hour or so, packed up the family and returned home. Chris had a call waiting for him. His father who was at dinner in Ohio at about the same time as the installation service was going, was stricken with a massive heart attack and died. Chris had to fly out to Cleveland at the same time I flew home. We were able to speak briefly while I was at the Oakland airport and heat the San Francisco airport. He's doing as well as one can hope under such circumstances.
But I'm glad he had those words to carry with him on that lonely flight to Ohio

Wisdom says I am nothing. Love says Iam everything. Between the two, my life flows.

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