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Nonduality Highlights: Issue #3017, Saturday, December 15, 2007, Editor: Mark

The way out of the madness is to recognize thought as just thought. To see your own stream of thinking, to see that no thought can encapsulate the entire truth in any situation. You have to step out of thought to see that. To become the awareness outside of thought.

- Eckhart Tolle, posted to The_Now2

In any situation of violence or war, there is a choice to be made - to become vulnerable to the pain involved or to raise defenses against it in a refusal to recognize its existence. Many raise defenses because such a path seems easier. For to become vulnerable is to let go of control - the control we place on our feelings when we repress them or fight them. And such a loss can be frightening. I found myself choosing vulnerability in Sri Lanka. I chose to look violence in the face. I chose to see its horror and to recognize the fear and pain it brings rather than to push these things from my consciousness.

The experience would not have been bearable if not for an encounter with compassion. For it was when I became aware, in my whole being rather than only at the level of the intellect, that what I was feeling was the pain of a nation, a world, rather than simply my own pain, that I was able to cope with it. It was the realization of interconnectedness - that we are woven one with another - an insight central to Buddhism. I saw that there is a common core of suffering in life which links us together so that to become vulnerable is inevitably to become aware not only of one's own pain but also of that of others. When I had reached this point of insight, compassion came like a gift and I learned that it could destroy bitterness and paralysis. Behind pain lies compassion - compassion for all beings caught up in the violence of existence.

It was at this time that I wrote the following words, disturbed by the number of people who seemed undisturbed by the fact that Sri Lanka had become a killing field:

Our eyes no longer cloud in grief
The sword no longer twists in our own heart
Moans on the wind no longer weaken our limbs
For we have grown accustomed, tamed
Our vulnerability encased in self-erected stone.
Do we need to relearn how to feel?
How to chip away what we ourselves have built
To sense again the rising of agony
, the breaking of control
As drops of blood become a river
And tears merge with its bitter flow.
Is this asking too much?
That we should so open our bodies to pain
To the shadowy part of our deeper selves
Where the hurt and joy of a cosmos lie
And compassion, like a fertile seed,
awaits to grow?

I feel we must open ourselves up. We must recognize the suffering which lies at the heart of existence and then let compassion arise and strengthen us to struggle against all that dehumanizes.

- Elizabeth Harris, from the article, "Journey Into Buddhism, posted to DailyDharma

God comes to each in the form the heart most desires.

God comes to the hungry in the form of food.

- Neem Karoli Baba, posted to SufiMystic

When the country is ruled with a light hand
The people are simple.
When the country is ruled with severity,
The people are cunning.

Happiness is rooted in misery.
Misery lurks beneath happiness.
Who knows what the future holds?
There is no honesty.
Honesty becomes dishonest.
Goodness becomes witchcraft
. Man's bewitchment lasts for a long time.

Therefore the sage is sharp but not cutting,
Pointed but not piercing,
Straightforward but not unrestrained,
Brilliant but not blinding.

- Lao-tzu, Tao Te Ching, translation by Gia-fu Feng and Jane English, posted to AlongTheWay

With us, one needs to be a waking sleeper,
that in the state of wakefulness,
you may dream dreams.
The thought of created things
is an enemy to this sweet waking sleep;
until your thought is asleep, your throat is shut,
no mysteries can enter.
Mystical bewilderment must sweep thought away;
bewilderment devours thought
and recollection of anything other than God.

- Rumi, Mathnawi III: 1114-1116, version by Camille and Kabir Helminski, Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance, posted to Sunlight

Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.

- posted to NondualitySalon

You cannot get it by taking thought;
You cannot seek it by not taking thought.

- Zenrin, posted to The_Now2

Wisdom is inherent in the total acceptance of every situation as it is, with the awareness of witnessing everything as though in a dream, keeping trust in the basic and essential harmony that is the unpreconceived natural intelligence of the universe.

- Ramesh Balsekar, posted to ANetofJewels

There is nothing to gain. Abandon all imaginings and know yourself as you are. Self-knowledge is detachment. All craving is due to a sense of insufficiency. When you know that you lack nothing, that all there is, is you and yours, desire ceases.

- Nisargadatta, posted to ANetofJewels

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