|Dr. Robert Puff|
Click here to go to the next issue
Highlights Home Page | Receive the Nonduality Highlights each day
How to submit material to the Highlights
#3110 - Wednesday, March 19, 2008 -
Editor: Gloria Lee
Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights
GESSHU SOKO (1618-1696)
There is nothing I can say
about what is between
a mother and child.
Hearing of her death,
my life is darkened.
Like a reed basket,
the years wove us together.
In the blank air
the smoke from a single incense stick
is my last word with her.
(written when he was sixteen, on pilgrimage,
hearing of his mother's death)
posted to Awakened Awareness by Tom McFerran
Finally will it not be enough,
after much living, after
much love, after much dying
of those you have loved,
to sit on the porch near sundown
with your eyes simply open,
watching the wind shape the clouds
into the shape of clouds?
Even then you will remember
the history of love, shaped
in the shape of flesh, everchanging
as the clouds that pass, the blessed
yearning of body for body,
You will remember, watching
the clouds, the future of love.
- Wendell Berry
posted to TrueVision by Eric Ashford
Alan Larus photography
Your Story Isn't Who You Are
The truth of who you are is not a story. The vastness and the closeness of that truth precedes all stories. When you overlook the truth of who you are in allegiance to some story, you miss a precious opportunity for self-recognition.
As a means of exposing your own particular story, you can ask yourself honestly and directly: What is my story? Exposing the story is not for the purpose of getting rid of it or following it. The purpose is to see what stories you are telling about who you think you are, or who you think you should be.
Whatever your answers may be, can you entertain the possibility that it is all just a story? It is not right, it is not wrong, it is not real.
Experience the possibility of its unreality. Drop your consciousness back into the space where there is no story, where there is no thought. If a thought arises, see that it is just passing through. It is neither wrong nor right. It is just a thought, having nothing to do with the essential truth of who you are.
Self-inquiry is not the fixed question, Who am I? Self-inquiry is a way of being, a way of living.
It is the willingness at any moment to stop and ask yourself: What is going on? What is being thought? What is being believed? Is it real? Is it true?
In this open investigation it is possible to recognize that whatever the story is, it is always only comprised of thought. However strong the thoughts may be, however relatively real the story may seem, it is still just made of thoughts.
Deeper than those thoughts, before them, after them, and gloriously even during them, is the truth of who you are. Without denying the relevance of any particular thought, it is possible to discover that truth.
Direct self-inquiry questions the basic assumption that you are "somebody".
This assumption is rarely examined because what usually follows is, "What I need, what I want, what I have, what I don't have, what I should have," and on and on.
These stories keep you identified as a person set apart from the vastness of your true identity. It keeps you identified only as a particular form, a body that is subject to birth and death. This identification is conscious individualization.
There is nothing evil or even mistaken about individualization. It is natural in the evolution and development of the human being. It is part of the mystery of human beingness.
For most spiritual seekers, the belief that personal identification obstructs self-realization gives rise to the drive to get rid of the personal story. But this is still just another part of the story. It is so important to recognize this. Attempting to get rid of the story is just another tangent of the story, another example of the power of mind to control.
I have often seen in spiritual circles that instead of a real examination of our storylines, there is a tendency to suppress the story. In that suppression, the story may seem to be removed, but there is still no peace. You cannot rest in the beauty and transcendence of yourself while suppressing the story of yourself.
The story is still going on, but since you identify yourself as a spiritual seeker, you push it out of conscious awareness. Spiritual conditioning has simply taken the place of worldly conditioning. The story is still operating, but now it operates subconsciously. And you are confused as to why you still suffer.
Continued suffering is proof that your story is still being told. If you are willing to not label that suffering as bad, then you can be willing to simply see what the story is.
One expression of self-inquiry is to "tell the truth." I have noticed that people will often express a relative truth, for example, "I'm angry", or "You hurt me", and then assume that this is as far as it goes.
The immediate, relative truth may very well be that you are angry or hurt, but that is not the whole truth. That is what you are feeling. What you are feeling in the moment may be the relative truth, but it is not the deepest truth.
Normally we interpret what we feel, sense, and experience as the full truth, and our interpretation perpetuates the cycles of suffering. Our feelings, thoughts, emotions, and circumstances comprise the personal story. The personal story is believed to be the truth.
Whether the emotional story is one of anguish or one of bliss, it is not the final truth. To be able to distinguish between the story and the truth is an aspect of discriminating wisdom, which in turn is a natural by-product of self-inquiry.
Great confusion arises in our misidentification of who we are with the physical body, the emotional body, or the mental body.
When the physical body experiences pain we say, "I hurt, I feel bad." This is the common usage of language. Saying, "My body hurts, my body is feeling pain" has a very different meaning.
When the emotional body is in turmoil we say, "I am upset, I am despairing, I am angry," rather than, "My emotions are in turmoil, there is anger appearing, there is despair appearing."
Whether you are happy or sad, you have the opportunity to tell the truth about what is deeper than that feeling.
The Diamond in Your Pocket
posted to Wisdom-l by Mark Scorelle
Even if you're not a seeker,
still, follow us, keep searching with us.
Even if you don't know how
to play and sing,
you'll become like us;
with us you'll start singing and dancing.
Even if you are Qarun, the richest of kings,
when you fall in love,
you'll become a beggar.
Though you are a sultan, like us you'll become a slave.
One candle of this gathering
is worth a hundred candles; its light is as great.
Either you are alive or dead.
You'll come back to life with us.
Unbind your feet.
Show the rose garden -
start laughing with your whole body,
like a rose, like us.
Put on the mantle for a moment
and see the ones whose hearts are alive.
Then, throw out your satin dresses
and cover yourself with a cloak, like us.
When a seed falls into the ground,
it germinates, grows, and becomes a tree:
if you understand these symbols,
you'll follow us, and fall to the ground, with us.
God's Shams of Tabriz says
to the heart's bud,
"If your eyes are opened,
you'll see the things worth seeing."
translated by Nevit Ergin with Camille Helminski
'The Rumi Collection' Ed. Kabir Helminski
Allspirit Website: http://www.allspirit.co.uk
top of page