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Nondual Highlights: Issue #2879, Sunday, July 22, 2007, Editor: Mark


Wanting nothing,
With all your heart stop the stream.
When the world dissolves
Everything becomes clear.
Go beyond this way or that way
To the farther shore
Where the world dissolves,
And everything becomes clear.
Beyond this shore and the farther shore
Beyond the beyond
Where there is no beginning, no end
Without fear, go.

- The Buddha, from the Dhammapada, posted to DailyDharma


All Psychological Suffering is Completely Unnecessary

In order to begin to be free from psychological suffering, one must
first feel some warmth towards oneself. This warmth arises from our
authentic being. This is a prerequisite. If this warmth is absent
then things will not proceed very far.

If you have emotionally beaten yourself over along period, this may
appear too difficult. It is not. Your normal rational intelligence
can proceed to assist in the first steps of self-discovery and then
warmth will arise of itself.

In order to feel a warmth and love towards oneself, we need to
transcend the emotional baggage belonging to memory and habitual
states of mind and body. With a willingness to make a direct enquiry,
things start to happen.

These long standing beliefs in mind weigh us down and inhibit our
natural open nature of being. In order to transcend these fixations
in mind we must investigate them. In investigating them thoroughly we
discover quite clearly that they are simply transient reference
points and so are found to be nothing but appearances in mind.

With this completed investigation comes a revelation. We find that
the present view, which is presently active, is already transcendent
to these fixations of self-doubt and emotional baggage. Everything is
seen clearly.

In this way, warmth of being spreads throughout the natural presence
and this includes all the instruments of cognition.

This is so simple that no one believes it. Who else is going to make
this investigation? Only you can do it.

All that can be done from here is to point this out. The rest is up
to you.

Once completed, you will be amazed at how simple it is and it will
baffle you as to why you did not see the simplicity of it before.

The first bird of the morning sings its simple song. Is anyone

- Gilbert W. Schultz, from The First Instant


In reality the Guru's role is only to instruct and encourage; the
disciple is totally responsible for himself.

When there is total surrender (to the Guru) then the Guru is not
important, for the disciple has broken the shell of self-defence.
Complete self surrender by itself is liberation. Do not look for a
Guru, don't even think of one. Make the goal your Guru. After all the
Guru is but a means to an end not the end itself. He is not
important, it is what you expect of him that matters to you.

More important is the finding of a true disciple. Believe me a true
disciple is very rare, for in no time he goes beyond the need for a
Guru, by finding his own Self. Life will bring you a Guru if one is
needed. Or deprive you of all outer guidance and leave you to your
own lights. It is very important to understand that it is the
teaching that matters, not the person of the Guru. The Guru only
tells you the good news about your real Self and shows you the way
back to it. In a way the Guru is its messenger. There will be many
messengers but the message is one: be what you are.

You are never without a Guru, for he is timelessly present in your
heart. Sometimes he externalizes himself and comes to you as an
uplifting and reforming factor in your life, a mother, a wife, a
teacher; or he remains as an inner urge towards righteousness and
perfection. All you have to do is obey him and do what he tells you.

What he wants you to do is simple, learn self awareness, self-
surrender. Earnestness is both necessary and sufficient. Everything
yields to earnestness. Compassion is the foundation of earnestness.
Compassion for yourself and others, born of suffering, your own and
of others.

- Nisargadatta Maharaj


Concerning this issue of samatha and vipassana, the important thing
is to develop these states in our own hearts. Only when we genuinely
cultivate them ourselves will we know what they actually are. We can
go and study what all the books say about psychological factors of
the mind, but that kind of intellectual understanding is useless for
actually cutting off selfish desire, anger, and delusion. We only
study the theory about selfish desire, anger, and delusion, merely
describing the various characteristics of these mental
defilements: ''Selfish desire has this meaning; anger means that;
delusion is defined as this.'' Only knowing their theoretical
qualities, we can talk about them only on that level. We know and we
are intelligent, but when these defilements actually appear in our
minds, do they correspond with the theory or not? When, for instance,
we experience something undesirable do we react and get into a bad
mood? Do we attach? Can we let it go? If aversion comes up and we
recognize it, do we still hang on to it? Or once we have seen it, do
we let it go? If we find that we see something we don't like and
retain that aversion in our hearts, we'd better go back and start
studying again. Because it's still not right. The practice is not yet
perfect. When it reaches perfection, letting go happens. Look at it
in this light.

We truly have to look deeply into our own hearts if we want to
experience the fruits of this practice. Attempting to describe the
psychology of the mind in terms of the numerous separate moments of
consciousness and their different characteristics is, in my opinion,
not taking the practice far enough. There's still a lot more to it.
If we are going to study these things, then know them absolutely,
with clarity and penetrative understanding. Without clarity of
insight, how will we ever be finished with them? There's no end to
it. We'll never complete our studies.

Practising Dhamma is thus extremely important. When I practised,
that's how I studied. I didn't know anything about mind moments or
psychological factors. I just observed the quality of knowing. If a
thought of hate arose, I asked myself why. If a thought of love
arose, I asked myself why. This is the way. Whether it's labeled as a
thought or called a psychological factor, so what? Just penetrate
this one point until you're able to resolve these feelings of love
and hate, until they completely vanish from the heart. When I was
able to stop loving and hating under any circumstance, I was able to
transcend suffering. Then it doesn't matter what happens, the heart
and mind are released and at ease. Nothing remains. It has all

Practise like this. If people want to talk a lot about theory that's
their business. But no matter how much it's debated, the practice
always comes down to this single point right here. When something
arises, it arises right here. Whether a lot or a little, it
originates right here. When it ceases, the cessation is right here.
Where else? The Buddha called this point the ''Knowing.'' When it
knows the way things are accurately, in line with the truth, we'll
understand the meaning of mind. Things incessantly deceive. As you
study them, they're simultaneously deceiving you. How else can I put
it? Even though you know about them, you are still being deluded by
them precisely where you know them. That's the situation. The issue
is this: it's my opinion that the Buddha didn't intend that we only
know what these things are called. The aim of the Buddha's teachings
is to figure out the way to liberate ourselves from these things
through searching for the underlying causes.

- Ajahn Chah


A study of life is the greatest of all religions, and there is no
greater or more interesting study.

Bowl of Saki, by Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:

There are two ways in which we may attain control over our activity.
The first is confidence in the power of our own will; to know that if
we have failed today, tomorrow we will not do so. The second is to
have our eyes wide open, and to watch keenly our activity in all
aspects of life. It is in the dark that we fall, but in the light we
can see where we are going.

So it is in life: we should have our eyes wide open to see where we
walk. We should study life, and seek to know why we say a thing, and
why we act as we do. We have failed perhaps hitherto because we have
not been wide awake. We have fallen, and felt sorry, and have
forgotten all about it, and perhaps may have fallen again. This is
because we have not studied life. A study of life is the greatest of
all religions, and there is no greater and more interesting study.
Those who have mastered all grades of activity, they above all
experience life in all its aspects. They are like swimmers in the sea
who float on the water of life and do not sink.

If we only knew how much the study of life can tell us! One could go
into the British Museum and read every book in the building, and yet
not obtain satisfaction. It is not study, it is not research, it is
not inquiry which gives this knowledge; it is actually going through
the experiences of life, witnessing life in its different aspects and
in its different phases or spheres; that is what reveals the ideal of
life. ... Look not on life as a person would watch a play on the
stage. Rather look upon it as a student who is learning at college.

It is not a passing show; it is not a place of amusement in which to
fool our life away. It is a place for study, in which every sorrow,
every heartbreak brings a precious lesson. It is a place in which to
learn by one's own suffering, by the study of the suffering of
others; to learn from the people who have been kind to us as well as
from the people who have been unkind. It is a place in which all
experiences, be they disappointments, struggles, and pains, or joys,
pleasures, and comforts, contribute to the understanding of what life
is, and the realization what it is. Then do we awake to the religion
of nature, which is the only religion. And the more we understand it,
the greater our life becomes, and the more of a blessing will our
life be for others.

- posted to SufiMystic

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