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Nondual Highlights: Issue #2878, Saturday, July 21, 2007, Editor: Mark

It was misty outside this morning - heck, we live on top of a mountain, for god's sake!

since I was up early I went outside to get rid of the haze before anyone else got up... but no matter how I tried - oh, I wielded big broom - it would not go away.. Ted the maintenance man came outside with his coffee... tried to help.. he had a spray can of somethin' or other... but the fog persisted...

we went back in for breakfast... sat out on patio with rest of staff.. everyone jabbered about the mist... where did it come from? it was not there last night!... what can we do? it affected each of our lives different ways.. for Sue she wanted to go on her morning walk but was afraid she would get lost... Jack needed to work in the garden and worried that he might not put the right fertilizer on the right plant.. and the construction manager fussed about how the fog would delay the crew once they got here... we had a lot of discussion about how we could get rid of that cloud.. so we could see clearly... with nothin' in our way...

we finally decided all of our might together might be better than each one tryin' our own techniques... so the house manager passed out these big ole brushes to everyone and we stood in a line and everyone brushed the haze in front of them as hard as they could... didn't work... that friggin' cloud was still there!.. then as we turned to go back in the house... just like that! the cloud was gone!

it had come from nowhere, stayed awhile, and then poof! it was gone...

the abbot of the monastery came out front door chompin' on a ripe peach... turned to us and said: just like all those thoughts you think are so important... leave them alone... and they will dissolve back into the causeless space you call the sky...

he then started throwin' pieces of the peach to a chipmonk...

i love that abbot.

- dg, posted to DailyDharma

whether bitter or sweet
clear or foggy
empty or full
none of those matter so much
as whether "to me"
or not

when "to me" dissolves
bitter or sweet
clear or foggy
empty or full
simply are

Bill Rishel, posted to The_Now1

Here is a short (relative term) spiritual autobiography. I composed it in response to Stephen's "What led you to Full Oneness experience". I also occurred to me that this story will be of interest to some here who might see a similarity in the description given regarding stage B1 below and Tolle's description in the beginning of The Power of Now where he recounts his saying, "I want to die," and then abruptly asks, "*Who* said that?" [am paraphrasing as have no copy of that book]

In truth what led me, then now and always, is Truth. Loving Truth more than happiness. Loving Truth more than anything. There is no method, technique, path that leads to the End except Truth. That is my view.

That being said, here is my story:

To put this in terms of Stephen's "Full Oneness Experience"...

I have found that:
A. there is "oneness experience" that can be interrupted
B. there is uninterrupted Oneness
A is an experience. B is the end of experience as such, as sense of "self" that might have such experience is "evaporated".

Also, in my case, there were stages along the way.

STAGES ======================================

Stage A1:
For me the first stage of A was "silent mind" or "ending of internal dialog." Initially for hours at a time, then for longer until that became the "normal" condition.

Stage A2:
Decades after the beginning of stage A1 came deeply established heart-centeredness.

Stage B1: Then, about a year later, there was a "transition" after which there was no "self-consciousness", meaning the kind of self-consciousness one might feel going into a crowded room for example. Stage B2:
Shortly after the end of "self-consciousness" there was a realization of no inner/outer distinction. Inside and outside became one continuum. And that one continuum came to no longer have a sense of "space" per se, as no longer a sense of any "here" vs. "there" in that.

WHAT LED TO ===================================

Not easy to say, actually. Can one really know? I'll do my best.

Re A1, silent mind:

I found great value in Krishnamurti's advice regarding the arising of thoughts. He said to not try to change them, stop them, etc., but to simply observe them. Allow them to expend themselves. In other words *simply witness*.

Re A2, deeply established heart-centeredness:

The following is an account I have written on this:

Although I had been on a "spiritual path" for my entire adult life, at one point several years ago I came to realize that I wasn't living it 100%. I decided to start "being in my heart" (hard to define exactly what that meant to me a the time) throughout the day, and in particular any time I was interacting with another person. My intent was to "speak from my heart" at all times, if on the phone, writing emails, any contact with another person.

After the first day it seemed I had succeeded in actually doing that perhaps for a few seconds. But each day it increased until after about two months it seemed to have become a steady way of responding and being. At four months there was a profound transformation of the heart, one of the deepest spiritual experiences of my life. Since then "being in my heart" is not something I choose to do, it is simply what is. It is actually impossible now to be otherwise (hard to explain).

I am describing this matter of "being in the heart" as something very simple but also very grounding, a confronting of the present in a real, actual way.

After some months of the practice described above there was a very profound heart experience. I described it at the time as if an experience of "two oceans merging in my heart". I was fundamentally and irrevokably changed. I was in a bliss state for four or five months. And it took even longer before I was able think about mental things like software.

Then I went into the most harrowing portion of my life. I was working as a temporary teacher (math) in a high school. I pretty much cracked up after three months. I was a nervous wreck and very depressed.

Re B1, no "self-consciousness":

I left that job and shortly after decided to inquire into what I really wanted to do. I had been reading Nisargadatta a lot during the ordeal. He was a kind of life raft for me. So when I sat down to meditate and investigate what I really wanted to do, I was thinking about his "I am" notion. It occurred to me that I had always thought I knew what he meant by "I am", but that really, perhaps I had no clue. So when I went into meditation I had the intent of inquiring into what he actually meant by "I am".

There is as if a "missing gap", because the next thing I remember, and remember very vividly, is the following:

I was deep within (apparently) because I was seeing a stream of pulses "going out" from my heart area in my chest (roughly). They were going "out" in a straight line toward the front of me, and a very little to the left. I realized that any one of them, if "opened" could become a whole experience in itself. But I just observed them.

Then the gaze moved over to the right, and Lo! there was another stream of pulses moving out, going out from my chest and a bit to the right. I noticed that these pulses had a bluish color, and simultaneously realized that the first stream of pulses had had a reddish color. Again, I realized that any one of the pulses *could be* opened up, and if so a whole complex of thought would unfold.

Then the gaze moved back to the left again and Lo! the stream of reddish pulses was still "going out". And it was clear that if one of those were "opened" it would become a world of feeling.

Then the gaze moved to the right again, and the bluish pulses were still moving out. Then the gaze moved to the left again, and again the reddish pulses were beheld...

And then -- SUDDENLY -- the question "What's looking back and forth?" arose.

It was if two hands clapping had caused an illusion to disappear. I abruptly got up, went into my computer room and began working on the art cards. That was the beginning of what I am still doing today. I had no forethought about it. I just got up and went in and worked all night on the art cards.

The next day I did notice something quite different. There was no "sense of 'me'". By a "sense of me" I mean that self-conscious sense one might have going into a crowded room and feeling everyone's stares upon you.

Re B2, no sense of inner/outer

A very short time after the above described "transition" I realized that any sense of a location "within" was imaginary, and in realizing that any sense of inner/outer disappeared.

THEREAFTER =======================================

About eight months later I got a job working with emotionally disturbed children. I worked there for a year and a half. The entire time there was really a spiritual practice, and the practice was very simple. The practice was to simply stay "in my heart" at all times, to be centered in my heart.

Some time in the following year I realized that I no longer had a sense of my "heart center". It was as if what had been my heart center had *expanded* completely so that all was encompassed by it. It was impossible to isolate any part of space subjectively.

For close to a year it was as if there is no "I". As if the present is a wonderous transparent "meld"... and not even a "flow"... just sparkling, alive awareness.

There was no real emotion, and yet human experience was somehow incredibly real and genuine.

There was no "self-consciousness", no sense of, "This is my experience going on right now."

It has been another year since I wrote the above and those last passages remain the same.

No sense of "I".... just a sparkling aliveness.

- Bill Rishel, posted to The_Now2

To Know the Moon and the Sea

At the break of dawn a single moon appeared,
descended from the sky, and gazed at me.

Like a falcon swooping in for the catch,
it snatched me up and soared across the sky.
When I looked at myself, I saw myself no more,
because by grace my body had become fine.

I made a journey of the soul accompanied by the moon,
until the secret of time was totally revealed.
Heaven's nine spheres were in that moon.
The vessel of my being had vanished in that sea.

Waves rose on the ocean. Intelligence ascended
and sounded its call. So it happened; so it was.
The sea began to foam and every bit of froth
took shape and was bodied forth.

Then each spindrift body kissed by that sea
immediately melted into spirit.
Without the power of a Shams, the Truth of Tabriz,
one could neither behold the moon nor become the sea.

- Rumi, Ghazal (Ode) N-XIX, version by Kabir Helminski, from Love is a Stranger

Love Beyond Description

This that is awake, this love that transcends all description, when it is known as a deep connection and deep unity, this love is indiscriminate. It doesn't know how to turn itself on and off. That switch is only in the mind. This love is always on. It loves saints and sinners equally. That's real love. Imitation love is, "I love you more than I love anyone else because you fit into my little twisted world view better than anyone else does."

True love is synonymous with Truth. It's not different than Truth.

It's not the love of going to the prom with the perfect person.

That's fine, of course, but this is something different. The deepest essence of love doesn't fall in and out. Love is, period. It loves even people your personality /night not like.

This is not because we develop it or become holy, noble, or saintly.

That has nothing to do with the love I'm speaking about. This love is a deep and simple recognition, something intuitively knowing and meeting itself in each experience, in each being, and in each pair of eyes. It meets itself in everything that happens.

It's the love simply for the fact that there's anything happening at all, because that's the real miracle. It could so easily be that nothing exists, much easier to have nothing than something. It's a miracle that anything happens and we live in this abundance called life.

-Adyashanti, from: Emptiness Dancing, posted to adyashantigroup

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