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Group: NDhighlights Message: 4719 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-10-02
Subject: #4719 - Monday, October 1, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee

#4719 -В Monday, October 1, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
Awakening Clarity 2.0!
В 
Fred Davis has a couple of big announcements. A new look and easier navigationВ 
on the website AND a new book, Beyond Recovery, coming out in December. InВ 
my opinion, Fred does some of the most interesting interviews of currentВ 
teachers, and he writes terrific book reviews in the area of nonduality andВ 
advaita. See the link to his Amazon reviews. The current Guest Teacher is JoanВ 
Tollifson, and you can also read the first chapter of her newВ book, Nothing ToВ 
Grasp.В 
В 
В 
Both Joan's and Fred's books can be ordered from Non-Duality Press.
http://non-dualitypress.org/
В 
Editor's correction: Several people wrote to tell me the quote by LongchenpaВ 
in myВ last issue was actually words to A Grateful Dead song. If you go to the pageВ 
http://artsites.ucsc.edu/GDead/agdl/eyes.html#eyes it explains in detail that a
book,В  entitled "You are the eyes of the world" is a new translation of the noted
BuddhistВ  practitioner Longchenpa's practical guide to the tantra. The lyrics
which make up the quote givenВ ARE in the book, as "part of Hunter's lyrics are
printed oppositeВ the title page". Golly, I hope they gave Hunter credit.В (Thanks, Mark)
В 

В 
В 
Beyond Recovery is about a quantum expansion of our understanding andВ 
experience of life. It can be discovered and lived within, or after successfulВ 
addiction recovery. Actually, recovery has nothing to do with all of this, exceptВ 
that if we have already lived through that type of personal failure, and foundВ 
redemption through surrender, then we are essentially set up for a "spiritualВ 
awakening," as this quantum expansion is often referred to. The spiritualВ 
awakening spoken of here is not the same thing as is generally referred to inВ 
other areas of religion, spirituality, or recovery. People do come to NondualВ 
awareness through those traditions, but it's rare. Here it's our foremost goal.В 
What is meant by this teaching's awakening will be made clear as we go along.В 
В 
It will be my personal blog-within-a-blog, and will address all things Nondual
from the standpoint of recovery. I'll be updating it more regularly than I do the
main page, so check back at least once a week. If you're interested in recovering
from your primary addiction--the craving for a separate self, this might be the
place for you.
В 
В 

В 
Blog excerpt:
В 
In general, the people who will wake up are the people who want it most, and who
therefore will do the most to get it. If this movement is the primary focus of
your life every single day I just don't see how you're not going to end up waking
up. I drove everyone around me crazy for a long, long time, and that's fine.
Awakeness swooped in and took me. That is worth any amount of hurt feelings or
skepticism.
В 
Let's recognize that ego very much wants to be enlightened. What a special
story! So it'll drag you around from time to time, and maybe even from place to
place, but it never really gets serious in a 24/7/365,
never-back-away-from-the-table fashion. It may buy you a lot of books and
DVD's, and it may move forward in great strides, but then it backs away in baby
steps every time it feels truth looming really large and close.
В 
Ego will spin you endless tales of what progress you're making, but if when you
bump up against the truth of your being you find yourself recoiling, it may be
that you just don't want to die to the truth. Fine, you don't have to, and you
probably won't. By in large, awakening takes willing victims. God knows I wanted
to die to the truth--I would have been happy to die to a .357 Magnum, if I'd
thought it wouldn't wreck Betsy, who'd had a key person commit suicide just a
few years before.
В 
I don't recommend you get yourself in that kind of spot, but I do recommend
that you take a hard look at your motives and your methods. Like the bottom
that most addicts hit before they will get honest, most people who recover from
their primary addiction--the craving for a separate self--have to reach a similar
bottom. Suffering is our friend over and over again in life. It always tells us the
truth: if we find ourselves in that friend's company, then we're in denial. It's
just that simple.
В 
Let us assume for the sake of this article that you have found yourself in
contact with a vividly awake, and trustworthy teacher. Do you take their advice
until it bumps up against a precious personal belief, some intellectual position,
and then think, "I don't think they have that part right, at least not for me."
Odds are they have it exactly right for exactly you. It is a fool's mistake to sell
your teacher short. Once you get on this side of things, so to speak, this ain't
rocket science.
В 
Any authentic teacher you allow to know you is aware of precisely where you are
on your path. It's a known path to them: they've been there, the same way that a
recovery sponsor has. You can't bullshit a person who's been through it.
Secondly, your teacher, just like a sponsor, knows where you're trying to get,
even though you don't. You can't lead yourself to a place you've never been, but
that's what all of us try to do--until we don't.
В 
I wouldn't surrender my judgment, my bank account, or my body to a teacher,
unless I wanted to leave the spiritual path for the duration and return to it
after I'd had my egoic pleasures fulfilled. You get what you want when you want
it. But I did surrender my resistance to their teaching.
Fred Davis
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4700 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-05
Subject: #4700 - Wednesday, September 5, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
#4700 - Wednesday, September 5, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
В 
Sundari responds to Martyn:
В 
MyВ WifeВ DoesnÂ’tВ AppreciateВ SelfВ Inquiry

HelloВ Martyn,

James [Swartz]В hasВ askedВ meВ toВ replyВ toВ youВ asВ heВ isВ veryВ busy.
В 
HeВ hasВ checkedВ myВ replyВ andВ givenВ itВ theВ RamjiВ VedantaВ clearance!

Martyn:В В MyВ desire,В yesВ desireВ still,В isВ toВ furtherВ myВ knowledgeВ ofВ self.В MoreВ 
soВ nowВ thanВ before.В ToВ beВ blunt,В myВ wifeВ doesВ notВ likeВ thisВ newВ pathВ IВ amВ 
on.В ReligionВ usedВ toВ beВ theВ commonВ groundВ weВ startedВ aВ familyВ on.В IВ talkВ 
excitedlyВ aboutВ VedantaВ andВ yourВ bookВ butВ it'sВ disdainfulВ toВ her.В It'sВ nowВ 
theВ sourceВ ofВ mostВ ourВ contentionВ andВ it'sВ onlyВ gettingВ worseВ theВ moreВ 
interestedВ IВ becomeВ inВ it.В NothingВ elseВ inВ myВ lifeВ hasВ sufferedВ sinceВ 
becomingВ lessВ attachedВ toВ thingsВ andВ objects.В TheВ thoughtВ ofВ beingВ 
attachmentВ freeВ ofВ relationshipsВ isВ hardВ forВ herВ toВ graspВ evenВ thoВ IВ explainВ itВ 
doesnÂ’tВ meanВ IВ won'tВ beВ thereВ forВ theВ family.В IsВ thisВ aВ commonВ problem?В IsВ 
myВ dutyВ toВ familyВ heavierВ than,В sheВ callsВ it,В myВ selfishВ quest?В В 
В В В В В В В В В 
Sundari:В ThisВ isВ aВ commonВ problemВ forВ peopleВ whoВ stillВ haveВ karmaВ inВ theВ 
worldВ andВ itВ isВ whyВ JamesВ encouragesВ peopleВ whoВ haveВ aВ burningВ desireВ forВ 
moksha notВ toВ pursueВ relationships. However,В youВ areВ marriedВ andВ haveВ aВ 
familyВ soВ thisВ isВ whatВ youВ haveВ toВ attendВ to. TheВ onlyВ wayВ toВ keepВ 
practicingВ selfВ inquiryВ (jnana yoga)В andВ toВ keepВ yourВ obligationsВ toВ yourВ 
marriageВ intact,В isВ toВ doВ yourВ dutiesВ withВ theВ karma yoga
attitude. ConsecrateВ yourВ actionsВ toВ theВ Self,В knowВ thatВ theВ fruitsВ ofВ yourВ 
actionsВ areВ notВ upВ toВ youВ andВ takeВ theВ resultsВ thatВ doВ comeВ asВ holyВ foodВ 
(Prasad).

YourВ wifeВ isВ rightВ inВ thatВ yourВ dutyВ isВ toВ followВ householderВ dharmaВ andВ toВ 
takeВ careВ ofВ theВ needsВ ofВ yourВ family. IfВ sheВ doesВ notВ understandВ andВ isВ 
threatenedВ byВ yourВ Г‚вЂ˜selfishÂ’ questВ (asВ sheВ seesВ it)В youВ needВ toВ takeВ herВ 
feelingsВ intoВ account. В В WeВ knowВ itВ isВ notВ selfishВ butВ sheВ doesВ notВ 
understand.В В SheВ doesВ notВ realizeВ thatВ selfВ inquiryВ willВ makeВ youВ moreВ calmВ 
andВ peacefulВ andВ moreВ inclinedВ toВ doВ yourВ duty.В В DonÂ’tВ tryВ toВ explainВ tooВ 
muchВ asВ sheВ mayВ notВ beВ readyВ toВ hearВ it. KrishnaВ saysВ toВ ArjunaВ inВ theВ 
BhagavadВ Gita, “ letВ notВ theВ wiseВ unsettleВ theВ mindsВ ofВ theВ ignorant”.
В 
IfВ youВ areВ followingВ dharma andВ practicingВ karma yoga,В sheВ shouldВ beВ 
appeased.В В AboveВ allВ practiceВ karmaВ yogaВ whenВ youВ argueВ withВ her.В В YouВ 
willВ undoubtedlyВ notВ getВ theВ resultВ youВ want.В ? PerhapsВ sheВ thinksВ youВ 
thinkВ herВ beliefsВ are inferiorВ toВ yours. Remember, VedantaВ isВ notВ aboutВ 
beingВ right: itВ isВ aboutВ theВ discoveringВ theВ happinessВ thatВ youВ areВ byВ 
understandingВ yourВ trueВ nature. ChooseВ toВ beВ happyВ ratherВ thanВ rightВ andВ 
allowВ herВ toВ worshipВ theВ SelfВ inВ herВ religiousВ style.В В TheВ SelfВ isВ selfВ aware,В itВ 
doesВ notВ mindВ inВ whichВ wayВ itВ isВ worshipped.В В ItВ seesВ herВ asВ itВ seesВ youВ andВ 
returnsВ theВ resultsВ ofВ herВ worshipВ toВ herВ inВ theВ wayВ thatВ isВ bestВ toВ makeВ herВ 
faithВ strong.В В RespectВ herВ views.

ThisВ doesВ notВ meanВ thatВ youВ haveВ toВ abandonВ yourВ sadhana.В Instead, makeВ 
yourВ devotionВ toВ yourВ familyВ partВ ofВ itВ withВ theВ practiceВ ofВ karma yoga.В В 
AllowВ thisВ attitudeВ toВ purifyВ theВ mindВ andВ moderateВ yourВ likesВ andВ 
dislikes. Karma yoga isВ worship,В bhakti yoga. SeeВ yourВ wifeВ andВ familyВ asВ 
God,В symbolsВ ofВ theВ Self, andВ giveВ yourВ loveВ andВ devotionВ toВ them. PracticeВ 
theВ yogaВ ofВ theВ threeВ gunas.В В SeeВ theВ wayВ theyВ ariseВ andВ subsideВ andВ whatВ 
effectsВ theyВ haveВ onВ yourВ SubtleВ Body. ThisВ isВ theВ bestВ trackingВ deviceВ toВ 
monitorВ yourВ likesВ andВ dislikesВ (vasanas)В andВ toВ establishВ whatВ 
unresolvedВ emotional/psychologicalВ issuesВ youВ mayВ stillВ have.
ThereВ isВ noВ easyВ wayВ toВ realiseВ theВ Self,В evenВ thoughВ itВ isВ obviousВ andВ 
alwaysВ present.В В ItВ isВ justВ you. YouВ haveВ toВ workВ withВ yourВ mindВ andВ itsВ 
ideas;В thereВ isВ noВ runningВ awayВ fromВ it. EvenВ thoughВ itВ isВ allВ aВ dreamВ andВ 
onlyВ apparentlyВ real,В lifeВ isВ hereВ toВ stay.В  DenyВ itВ atВ yourВ peril.

HavingВ saidВ that,В yourВ wifeВ alsoВ needsВ toВ understandВ yourВ needsВ andВ ifВ sheВ 
doesВ notВ feel threatenedВ orВ diminished byВ theВ intensityВ ofВ yourВ inquiry,В sheВ 
willВ probablyВ eventuallyВ appreciateВ theВ valueВ ofВ yourВ pursuit.В  WeВ haveВ aВ 
friendВ whoВ hadВ knownВ whoВ heВ isВ forВ manyВ yearsВ butВ whoseВ wifeВ isВ onlyВ 
startingВ toВ realizeВ whoВ heВ isВ afterВ sevenВ years!В В PeopleВ getВ lockedВ intoВ theirВ 
beliefsВ aboutВ realityВ andВ itВ isВ veryВ difficultВ toВ changeВ them.В В ButВ donÂ’tВ getВ 
discouraged.В В 

OmВ andВ Prem,
Sundari
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4701 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-09-07
Subject: #4701 - Thursday, September 6, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee

#4701 -В Thursday, September 6, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
В 
You are not separate from the whole.
You are one with the sun, the earth, the air.
You don't have a life. You are life.
В 
~ Eckhart Tolle
В 

В 
I sit in my own radiance,
And I have no fear.
В 
Walking,
Dreaming,
Sleeping,
What are they to me?
В 
What is far or near,
Outside or inside,
Gross or subtle?
В 
I sit in my own splendor.
В 
В В В В В В В  - Ashtavakra Gita
via Along The Way
В 

В 
Not the ones speaking the same language,В 
but the ones sharing the same feeling
understand each other.
В 
~ Rumi
В 
В 

В 
The soul has been given its own ears to hear things mind does not understand.
~ Rumi
В 

В 
You don't have to wait one second for the next "planetary alignment." All
planets and stars are in alignment at every moment in an ever self-turning
kaleidoscope of cosmic perfection with which only our human self-will is out
of harmony until we surrender to the divine grace of Bewilderment.
В 
~ FredВ  LaMotte
В 
В 
В 

В 
"Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry,
the philosophy which does not laugh,
and the greatness which does not bow before children."
В 
~ Kahlil Gibran
В 

В 
The care of the Earth is our most ancient and most worthy and after all our most
pleasing responsibility. To cherish what remains of it and to foster its renewal is
our only hope.
В 
~ Wendell Berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

В 

В 
I don't believe in breathing, I just breathe.
I don't believe in my heart, it just beats.
I don't believe in the hummingbird
who sleeps on a lilac twig, its head pillowed
on her own emerald breast.
I don't believe in the silken cat
slipping silently through her element of moonbeams.
I don't believe in your gaze, it just obliterates
my confusion.
I don't believe in Jesus or Mary, who wander
through a forest of secret flowers in my body
searching for the fountain of silence, the end
of believing.
Whoever finds that fountain just listens
to a gushing sound.
~ Fred LaMotte
В 

В 
Is Truth Beauty? Is Beauty Truth?
В 
And in my thoughts I found myself carried far from mankind, and my imagination
lifted the veil of matter that hid my inner self. My soul expanded and I was
brought closer to Nature and her secrets, and my ears were opened to the
language of her wonders.В 
В 
~В Wendell Berry
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4702 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-08
Subject: #4702 - Friday, September 7, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В #4702 - Friday, September 7, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
A shift that seems to be happening is fromВ "doing"В Yoga to, as James Traverse says, "being" Yoga.В In the article below,В Ellen Davis declares, inВ many different ways, that Yoga is being, silence, space, this.
В 
В 

В 
В 
В 
“What is Yoga? “
В 
by Ellen Davis
В 
In the deep dance of this experience I find that yoga is consciousness totally surrendered and awake to itself in the present moment allowing its breath of being to dance itself into becoming.В  It is the relaxed being of awareness that within this present moment becomes awake to itself.В  All division collapses in the light of unity and in an instant, the apparent two that have become one are seen to have never been separate or real in the first place.
В 
Yoga bridges science and spirituality, bringingВ  a wider inquiry, heart and mystery to science, and deconstructing the myths, allegories, confabulations, and dogmas out of spirituality to its bare bones truth.
В 
I come here [to this Yoga Teacher Training Course in Rishikesh] with the lived understanding (as influenced by Sri Aurobindo) that "All of life is yoga".В  I find that our lives are like our yoga mats, where we face ourselves and whatever doesn't know itself as peace. Silence breathes our eternity into time and we dance to the rhythm of our breath. Peace embraces what doesn't know itself, so that it can know itself. Love embraces what doesn't know itself, so that it can know itself.
В 
Yoga is defined through its etymology as “union”, “joining” or “yoking”.В  I find it is where the apparent two come together, or are unveiled as one.В В  In that sense its realization seems to deconstruct its meaning.В В  “Yoga” as a term, is a prayer of aspiration towards realization, speaking in the language of that which has not realized its always and already reality.В  It is the union of body, mind, and spirit; it is polar aspectsВ  or appearances disappearing in oneness.В  It is where stillness, the immutable and never changing breathe the ever-changing, and the ever-changing invites awareness of theВ unchanging ground from which it is born.В В В  It is where there is both only breath and the breath disappears; where the inhale and the exhale that have appeared like two disappear into the continuity of one.В  In yoga, the story that "I cannot do this" dissolves into a presence and allowance with what is here and happening.В  In yoga the stories are embraced and seen for what they are, and perceived opposites melt into a union where the seer is seen by itself and can experience beyond identification to, through, and with thoughts and the senses.
В 
In yoga, there is no "effort", there is focused release. Yoga is relaxation.В  The relaxation I am talking about is active, it is not passive. It is antecedent to and part and parcel of wakeful awareness or consciousness. The tension behind effort obfuscates awareness. An insight that I brought here with me is that flexibility of the body is directly corollary to flexibility of consciousness.В  And flexibility of consciousness has to do with being right here and right now and not resisting what is. We can only transcend something by fully embracing it and seeing it in the light of Truth. Yoga is the willingness to be honest, be with things as they are, and to see things in Truth.
В 
I have learned that the purpose for all of the yoga sadhana is preparation for meditation or to learn to “sit” and free ourselves from the habits that would inhibit that.В  I take that to mean that it is all of the disciplines that will enable a surrender through stillness to Silence where we are lived and breathed by and through our true, unborn, undivided nature and the freedom and truth consciousness that is prior to our conditioning and beyond our pre-conceptions or anything that mind can hold; where meditation is a spontaneous arising of stillness that pervades our waking, dreaming, and deep sleep.
В 
Yoga asanas as well as feeling all the senses, are an invitation to witness consciousness.В  It would seem otherwise and that this is paradoxical because we tend to get pulled into the senses and identify through them.В  The sense of "I" and "me" are tension.В  Yoga releases that because in trusting, accepting, and surrendering to the divine creative will and relaxing into it,В  arising sensations become about "the body" rather than "me".В  The key is always in the apparent obstacle.В 
В 
The word "practice" is used a lot in the context of yoga and I have been inquiring into its meaning. "Practicing" feels like what we do to achieve something. In that light, "Practicing yoga" appears to me to be oxymoronic.В  I am seeing this term "practice" used to point to a means to an end. If we know the "end achievement" as what we always and are already are, then it is more like a living of that than a practicing of it.В  If practice is thought to be what we do to achieve something that we are not, we can end up reinforcing our perceived separation from it and concretizing our efforts towards an illusion.В  In that light, I find that there is not the practicing of yoga - there is yoga yoga-ing. ;-)В  Or there is living yoga. In my own field I find that the only way to be a dancer is to be a dancer now (at whatever level).В  One cannot try to be a dancer. So the only way to do yoga is to be yoga, to be the breath of that union of body, mind and spirit. And in the light of "achievement", there is no one 'doing' yoga.В  There is only yoga and the emptiness in which it arises.
В 
All of that being said, I see the value of our focused and disciplined intent, of discovering, exploring, experiencing, invoking, and unveiling the truth of being. And each step can be useful in developing the understanding that will perhaps one day find those very same steps or their understandings as bars to further realization.

Yoga is love.В  Love loving, experiencing, and realizing itself through life and all the stories we weave, no matter what the appearances.
В 
Yoga is relaxation and finding it through all conditions.
Yoga is awareness waking up to itself.
Yoga is non-attachment, where true connection and intimacy can be Known.
Yoga is allowance and self-acceptance, where we find presence and the ability to rest in where we are, wherever that might be.
Yoga is peace.В  This is where yoga has its realization.
Yoga is Silence, where all inspiration and the knowing that is beyond our preconceptions are born and can breathe, sing, and dance.
Yoga is stillness, from which all movement springs.
Yoga is the immeasurable, which is known, along with stillness, when measuring stops.
Yoga is eternity, or 'now', where true presence is known.В  Time is a medium of the play of timelessness, and future and past are simply stories that we tell ourselves as we are looking forward or backward.

Yoga is that thoughts are not reality, they are just thoughts; but believed, can powerfully inform our experience and the way we respond to and through it, and the way life responds to us. Everything, including our thoughts, energetically play into the totality of all of our conditions.
Yoga is where science and spirituality meet; where effort and effortlessness meet; where that which is conditioned and unconditioned meet; where deep relationship with self and all meets.

Yoga is the impersonal finding itself through the personal, and all conditions.
Yoga is permanence, Brahman, the eternal unchanging infinite, and that which can never come or go finding or remembering itself through impermanence.

Yoga is the One coming to know itself as the many and the many coming to know themselves as the One.
Yoga is wu wei; spontaneous action that from the perspective of a self-perceived “doer” could seem like nonaction; it is the creative will breathing itself as trans-volitional action without a self-perceived doer.

Yoga is the resolution of paradox in form.
Yoga is the continuity of one movement flowing into the next and never stopping, and yoga is all stopping to utter stillness.
Yoga is balance, is health, is life.В  Yoga is also the art of death.

Yoga is consciousness turned towards its most divine, disciplined, refined, and free expression.
Yoga is the Divine, as and through us, coming to know itself in its infinite diversity.
Yoga is materializing the spiritual, and Г‚вЂ˜spiritualizingÂ’ the material; spirit waking up to itself in the material.
Yoga is liberation, where freedom can breathe its eternity in time.

Yoga is one, or nottwo, the sum of which all additions, subtractions, multiplications or divisions add up.
Yoga and all stories are born from Self's delight with itself.
Yoga is bliss tasting its rasa through all appearances.

Yoga is Truth, where the truth consciousness finds itself through and behind every appearance.
Yoga is undivided awareness where we can move from, to, and through peace and our true nature.
Yoga is unconditional love breathing its ever-expanding heart through its care and tenderness of this moment.
Yoga is our true, unborn, unconditioned, undivided nature coming to know and experience itself.
В 
Yoga is the unknown, where mystery is the medium for true Self-discovery, experience, and Knowledge, and the Divine Truth Consciousness can dance its fulfillment, freedom, and Known, through manifestation.
Yoga is the Grace that pulls all of these things within the totality of all conditions together.
Yoga is Self coming to Know Self.
В 
"I the Self reveal Self by Self in Self."В  Liberated by this knowledge, one enjoys the play."В  Sri Aurobindo, Sri Aurobindo's Upanishads
Yoga is satchidananda.
Yoga is emptiness, the space in which all (stories) arise.
В 
Yoga is this.

-Ellen Davis 10/2010
В 
В 

В 
Nonduality and Yoga Conference
Halifax, Nova Scotia
October 12-14, 2012
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4703 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-10
Subject: #4703 - Sunday, September 9, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В #4703 - Sunday, September 9, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
Mark's on a weekend hiatus. I know how muchВ many of us look forward to his Highlights issues, but I'm not going to attempt to do what Mark does with such consistent brilliance.
В 
Many of us, en route to stumbling upon nonduality, spent some time in the land of parapsychology. I guess it would only be a matter of time before parapsychology stumbled upon nonduality. Today's article is an excerpt from a book review of YOGA AND PARAPSYCHOLOGY: EMPIRICAL RESEARCH AND THEORETICAL ESSAYS. Edited by K. Ramakrishna Rao. I don't know whether this is the first in depth inclusion of nondualism within establishment parapsychology (i.e., The Journal of Parapsychology), but I believe it's the first I've encountered.
В 
В 

В 
В 
YOGA AND PARAPSYCHOLOGY: EMPIRICAL RESEARCH AND THEORETICAL ESSAYS
В 
В 

Publication: The Journal of Parapsychology
Author: Solfvin, Jerry
Date published: April 1, 2011
YOGA AND PARAPSYCHOLOGY: EMPIRICAL RESEARCH AND THEORETICAL ESSAYS. Edited by K. Ramakrishna Rao. Delhi, India: Motilal Banarsidass Publishers, 2010. Pp. 516. $74.00 (hardcover). ISBN 9788120834736.
В 
As world political and economic events outside of die academy continue to ramp up the booty for the deepening of real and lasting EastWest communication and understanding, it may be an especially propitious time to do so within the academy as well. K. Ramakrishna Rao has become a passionate and indefatigable leader in this great endeavor. He has published in recent years several important contributions toward an East-West bridge on academic topics, including Consciousness Studies: Cross-Cultural Perspectives (Rao, 2002), Towards a Spiritual Psychology (Rao & Marwaha, 2005), and the outstanding and sorely needed Handbook of Indian Psychology (Rao, Paranjpe, & Dalai, 2008) . Now he follows this with an edited volume aimed squarely at the specific field with which his name was most closely associated for so many years - parapsychology. It is at once a parting shot - in the sense that it summarizes the locus of his life's work in this small field - as well as an opening shot in the sense that it includes the inaugural lectures Rao gathered to launch his Institute for Human Science & Service (IHSS) in Andhra Pradesh, India, in 2006.
В 
In Rao's preface, he clearly states why he believes yoga and parapsychology need to be studied together: "A serious and scientific study of the two and the resultant synergy of their confluence could result in resolving many of the riddles that puzzle parapsychology today and be the harbinger of a vibrant science opening to new frontiers. Further, it could be seen as a productive East-West meet in a profound sense" (p. xv). But the real message lying just beneath the surface is that western parapsychologists need to pay more attention to eastern approaches to this topic. I couldn't agree more! Specifically, India offers a virtual treasure chest of gifts for the field of parapsychology, if westerners would only "wake up" to it. Some already have.
В 
Rao takes on the role of guru to wake us up to the all-too-painful fact that western parapsychologists try to ignore in what must be the ultimate case of collective denial in the history of science. "Wake up," Rao seems to say, and open your eyes to the elephant in die room. Western science does not want us! How many carcasses of brilliant and creative colleagues must we see strewn by the roadside before we'll wake up? In fact, real parapsychology (as represented by the PA) is not wanted in the West by science, religion, or society (except perhaps as a titillating back alley for selling horror films through unbelievably bizarre fantabulations and distortions of psi phenomena). In India, on die other hand, real parapsychology is welcomed, respected, and even revered. Of course, I am stating this much more strongly than Rao does, but that is, in my opinion, die key take-away message of this tome.
В 
Rao's introductory chapter, 'Yoga and Parapsychology," sets the tone by reviewing the current state of parapsychological research separately from western and eastern viewpoints. Rao here establishes the chorus that will be repeated throughout this book - that western science suffers from an assumptive base which rules out psi, thus forcing parapsychology into the paradox of using science to demolish the very assumptive base of science itself.
В 
After Rao's intro, the volume continues with two substantial contributions from state-of-the-art western parapsychologists, Jim Kennedy and Jim Carpenter. I've always enjoyed Jim Kennedy's thoughtful work and this piece is no exception, although I was puzzled why it is featured in this compendium. Kennedy wrestles with the sticky problem of the evasiveness of psi in research settings, and then takes the reader on a tortuous romp through a hodge-podge of parapsychological topics in search of a crack in the wall that might shed some light on the topic. This leads to the connections between psi, mysticism, and spirituality, which is clearly relevant to the current volume. As I ponder Kennedy's chapter, I wonder if Rao chose this, in part, as an example of how "pure" western dualistic science deals with psi and spirituality. It is an excellent illustration of just that. For example, Kennedy concludes, "Further exploration of the relationship between spirituality and psi may find that the most appropriate model is to view the source of psi as largely external to living persons" (p. 60) . By contrast, nondualistic Indian psychology is unlikely to highlight such separations. This is classic western thinking - the separation (analysis) into elements, the "who's doing it?" approach to psi.
В 
What a fine choice Rao has made in selecting the next chapter, Jim Carpenter's outline of his "first sight" model of psi and the mind, which is a tour of Carpenter's many-mansioned and very deep mind. Carpenter certainly - and thankfully - puts the psychohgy back into parapsychology at a time when straight western psychology (whatever that is!) has all but abandoned mind, spirit, and consciousness to philosophers, physicists, and neuroscientists. Carpenter, a personality theorist and clinical psychologist, talks and listens to his human clients and engages in parapsychology the same way.
В 
A great discovery here is just how closely attuned Carpenter's thinking is with the Hindu Vedas. Carpenter's first sight conception of human nature is, "each person is not contained within personal, physical boundaries, but ontologically and epistemologically extends beyond that into intimate commerce with all the rest of reality, including all other persons" (p. 99). And like the Hindu scriptures, Carpenter's model does not deal with (or even concern itself with) "proof of the existence of psi. Neither does he try to solve the problem of the connection between mind and body - rather, "the split between them is not assumed to begin with" (p. 72). By not assuming the separation, he has no conceptual problem with the "possibility" of psi phenomena.
В 
This is nondualism, which is at the core of many East-West misunderstandings regarding mind and spirit. Stated simply, western dualists tend to forget/ignore that "separation" is an assumption that is added on. Or, as Carpenter phrases it, "In a phenomenological approach, a dualistic split between the subjective and objective aspects of experience is eschewed, and the need for providing some sort of physical mechanism linking mind to world or present to future event is avoided" (pp. 100-101). This key foundational brick is right out of the Hindu Advaita Vedanta (= nondual philosophy) , even though Carpenter is not a Hindu devotee, nor even an Indophile.
В 
This chapter is the best and most compelling explanation I have come across of Carpenter's first sight model. I look forward to the book Carpenter will soon be publishing on this issue, and I hope he'll include reference to its reflections in eastern philosophy.
В 
В 
В 
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4704 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-09-11
Subject: #4704 - Monday, September 3, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee

#4704 -В Monday, September 3, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
What is Tao?
В 
By Lu Tung Pin
(755 - 805)
В 
English version by T. C. Lai
В 
В 
В 
What is Tao?
It is just this.
It cannot be rendered into speech.
If you insist on an explanation,
This means exactly this.
В 
В 

В 
To know no one teaching, to express nothing, to say nothing, to explain nothing,
to announce nothing, to indicate nothing, and to designate nothing - that is the
entrance into nonduality.
В 
~ Vimalakirti Sutra
В 
via Kia Pierce on Facebook
В 

В 
"The flow of confusing thoughts cannot be stopped, just like the wind or
a waterfall in the mountains.
Therefore towards whatever arises, however it arises maintain the
natural state of open awareness."
В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В 
~Nuden Dorje
В 
via Daily Dharma
В 

В 
There is no scripture in which contradiction does not exist.
It is the contradiction which makes the music of the message.
В 
~ Hazrat Inayat Khan
В 
via Along The Way
В 

В 
В 
photo by Peter Shefler
В 
В 
“White Owl Flies Into and Out of the Field”
В 
Coming down out of the freezing sky
with its depths of light,
like an angel, or a Buddha with wings,
it was beautiful, and accurate,
striking the snow and whatever was there
with a force that left the imprint
of the tips of its wings - five feet apart -
and the grabbing thrust of its feet,
and the indentation of what had been running
through the white valleys of the snow -
and then it rose, gracefully,
and flew back to the frozen marshes
to lurk there, like a little lighthouse,
in the blue shadows -
so I thought:
maybe death isn't darkness, after all,
but so much light wrapping itself around us -
as soft as feathers -
that we are instantly weary of looking, and looking,
and shut our eyes, not without amazement,
and let ourselves be carried,
as through the translucence of mica,
to the river that is without the least dapple or shadow,
that is nothing but light - scalding, aortal light -
in which we are washed and washed
out of our bones.
В 
~В Mary Oliver
В 
В 
"Snowy Owl"
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4705 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-12
Subject: #4705 - Wednesday, September 12, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В #4705 - Wednesday, September 12, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
Here are three stories/links about happiness, habits, and cravings. One is more interesting and fascinating than the other!
В 
В 

В 
Martha writes:
В 
jerry,

interesting Western/popularizing re-statement of some ancient discoveries
"is it really the case that gall bladder surgery and a trip to Paris are the same thing?"

http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_gilbert_asks_why_are_we_happy.html

hearing it, i thought of you and your work... doesn't seem to me a bad thing that almost 4 million have watched this. so many have simply never encountered these basically simple understandings.В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
В 
Detailed overview of The Power of Habit, by Charles Duhigg
В 
Reviewed by Dustin LindenSmith
В 
The New York Times investigative journalist Charles DuhiggÂ’s The Power of HabitВ http://charlesduhigg.com/the-power-of-habit/ is a lively and engaging read that teaches you about the neurophysiology of habit formation through a series of page-turning anecdotes from various sectors of society. Split mainly into three sections dealing with the habits of individuals, of organizations, and then of society, Duhigg illustrates how the deeply-researched and well-understood "habit loop" (i.e. cue, routine, reward) is manifest (and subsequently modified) in a variety of interesting situations.
В 
Read the full review:
В 
В 

В 
В 
The Compulsion Inquiry~Self as Contraction, Manifesting as Compulsion

September 9, 2012 by colettekelso

Over at Living Realization, weÂ’ve been working on a new form of inquiry specifically designed to address addiction and compulsive behavior. ItÂ’s called the Compulsion Inquiry (CI). Scott KilobyÂ’s book on addiction, Natural Rest, http://kiloby.com/recovery.php?writingid=183В will be out in a few months, and all is revealed expertly there, so without going into a lengthy description here, there is an aspect that is of particular interest in regard to the unfindable self.
В 
In brief, first we look for the command to use, or engage in the compulsive behavior, in images, words, and bodily sensations. For instance, the image of a cigarette, or even the cigarette itself—Where is there a command to smoke in either the image or even the cigarette in your hand? We go through all possible associations with the behavior, even looking at a clock, the place where the behavior occurs, and other triggers, like smoking with a morning cup of coffee. No command can be found anywhere.
В 
Then it can be seen that when an urge or a craving arises, there is an almost fleeting, flash image of the act itself, like a “ghost image” of the activity already happening. When this image is seen, really looked at, prior to using, the craving miraculously seems to disappear, or is simply forgotten.
В 
Read the entire article here:
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4706 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-09-14
Subject: #4706 - Thursday, September 13, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee

#4706 -В Thursday, September 13, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
Your true nature is something never lost to you even in moments of delusion, nor
is it gained at the moment of Enlightenment. It is the Nature of the
Bhutatathata. In it is neither delusion nor right understanding. It fills the Void
everywhere and intrinsically of the substance of the One Mind. How, then, can
your mind created objects exist outside the Void?
В 
The Void is fundamentally without spacial dimensions, passions, activities,
delusions or right understanding. You must clearly understand that in it there
are no things, no men, and no Buddhas; for this Void contains not the smallest
hairsbreadth of anything that can be viewed spacially; it depends on nothing and
is attached to nothing. It is all-pervading, spotless beauty; it is the self existent
and uncreated Absolute. Then how can it even be a matter for discussion that
the real Buddha has no mouth and preaches no dharma, or that real hearing
requires no ears, for who could hear it? Ah, it is a jewel beyond all price!
В 
~ The Zen Teachings of Huang PoВ 
В 
В 

В 
В 

В 
From a Q&A Session:
В 
If you were inside a building and wanted to get outside, you would have to go
through a process to get there. Right now it doesn't seem to you that you're
enlightened, so you need to go through a process. In one way, this example
doesn't work because once you get outside, you will realize it isn't any different
there than inside. Ignorance, attachment, and aversion create an artificial
barrier, the fictitious experience of separation from our true nature. As we
apply the methods of the Bodhisattva Peace Training, those obscurations dissolve
and the absolute truth gradually becomes apparent. The methods of this training
have a twofold purpose: to make us more effective in our efforts to help others
and to lead us to enlightenment. The same practice that enhances our ability to
benefit will also bring about our awakening.
В 
~ Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche
В 
From the book, 'Change of Heart,' published by Padma Publishing
via Daily Dharma
В 

В 
The Best of Intentions
В 
В 
В 
"... But I want to act more out of Source than out of the ego."
В 
Yes, of course you do!В 
В 
But now you have to get very, very still.В 
В 
Very still.В 
В 
Because... who would say that?
В 
*
В 
Now. What is it that is AWARE of the one saying that?
В 
*
В 
Yes! This is Source. Right now. Source is the You that is aware of the one who
wants to act more out of Source than out of the ego. Do you see?
В 
*
В 
What this means in "real life" is that if you find you are giving yourself a hard
time – or that you are giving anyone else a hard time – for acting out of the ego,
then who is it that would have to be doing that?
В 
*
В 
Right! It would have to be the ego.
В 
And what is AWARE of that activity?
В 
*
В 
Yes.В 
В 
*
В 
See, you have to be exceedingly empty and clear on your insides in order to actВ 
out of Source. Otherwise, as you have discovered, nothing you think, or say,
or do, can be trusted.
В 
AND, it must be said that no one – and I mean no one – can possibly know what
Source will look like in advance. It can look like anything!!
В 
Which means, if you think you do know what Source ought to be looking like,
then, once again, who would that be, thinking that?
В 
*
В 
And what is AWARE of that one?
В 
*
В 
!!YES!!В 
В 
:D
В 
*
В 
It is your birthright to be free.В 
В 
*
В 
Enjoy it.
В 
Kheyala Rasa
В 
В 

В 
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4707 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-14
Subject: #4707 - Friday, September 14, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В #4707 - Friday, September 14, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
New release from Non-Duality Press:
В 
В 
В 
В 

Excerpt from Full Stop! The Gateway to Present Perfection, by John Wheeler

http://non-dualitypress.org/products/full-stop

Awareness and Г‚вЂ˜PureÂ’ Consciousness

Question: I was hoping to ask another question about an area of

confusion that tends to come and go. That is a big clue right there!

Ha! The awareness is here. And the Г‚вЂ˜I amÂ’ as an assumption, or a

deeply held idea, is also clear.

В 

John: Why even say it is Г‚вЂ˜deeply heldÂ’? It is just an idea, one

among many others.

В 

Q: There is a regular seeing of thoughts and feelings.

В 

John: Yes?

В 

Q: There almost seems to be two levels of consciousness. One is the

personal conditioning of the human being that generates the experience

that each person perceives, and interprets events and others

according to their individual genetic and historical conditioning.

В 

John: But this is not consciousness. It is an appearance in

the consciousness. It is rather mechanical, and, if you like,

Г‚вЂ˜conditionedÂ’.

В 

Q: The other experience is the impersonal consciousness that seems

to manifest the phenomenal universe.

В 

John: Yes, the universe appears in consciousness.

В 

Q: It does seem that the body is needed in order to perceive the manifest

world. It is like a camera, a viewing lens that makes sense of

what otherwise could not be seen or experienced. Does this seem

right so far?

В 

John: Exactly true.

В 

Q: The non-conceptual awareness is prior to both of those and is the

source of both of them, in an ultimate sense.

В 

John: If you want to use that language, I would agree. Some

people make a slight differentiation between Г‚вЂ˜consciousnessÂ’

and Г‚вЂ˜awarenessÂ’. In that case, consciousness is Г‚вЂ˜consciousness

of Â’, while awareness shines before, during and after all acts or

experiences of consciousness. You are the awareness, while

consciousness comes and goes in and on that, like a wave on

water. They are the same substance or essence.

В 

Q: In

I Am That, Nisargadatta Maharaj says that the body identification

is one of the most difficult identifications to see through.

I find this true. It seems as if the awareness is located in the body.

What pointers or inquiries clarify this? There is awareness of bodily

sensations, feelings, senses, etc. There is also a clear awareness that

the body changes all the time, while this basic sense of beingness

never changes. Is this it? Is that all there is to this?

В 

John: Yes. Not only the body, but all experiences are in consciousness

— other bodies, the world, the mind, etc. If you

care to make a distinction between consciousness and awareness,

then that consciousness also comes and goes in awareness.

Nisargadatta Maharaj (actually his translators) usually

used the term Г‚вЂ˜beingnessÂ’ as a synonym for the transient

consciousness.

В 

Q: I may be getting confused by the word Г‚вЂ˜awarenessÂ’ as a pointer

to the absolute reality. Awareness seems like something that would

be more characteristic of the body-mind or the nonverbal Г‚вЂ˜I amÂ’

consciousness, rather than an attribute of pure consciousness, the

absolute reality.

В 

John: Г‚вЂ˜AwarenessÂ’ and Г‚вЂ˜pure consciousnessÂ’ are the same

pointer, so use whatever word works best for you.

В 

Q: Without the body and its perceptual mechanisms, how could the

absolute view anything?

В 

John: This is exactly the point. There are no objects or any

need to view anything without the presence of the body,

senses and mind. So pause, and realise that all those appearances

come and go in what you ultimately are.

~ ~ ~

Find out more and order Full Stop! here:

http://non-dualitypress.org/products/full-stop

Group: NDhighlights Message: 4708 From: Mark Date: 2012-09-17
Subject: #4708 - Saturday/Sunday, September 15/16, 2012

Archived issues of the NDHighlights are available online: http://nonduality.com/hlhome.htm

Nonduality Highlights Issue #4708, Saturday/Sunday, September 15/16, 2012





The course of every intellectual, if he pursues his journey long and unflinchingly enough, ends in the obvious, from which the non-intellectuals have never stirred.

Aldous Huxley, posted to SufiMystic




The technique to return to your source is very simple. The outside attachments do not allow sitting still and meditating. So avoid, for some time, all outside attachments like you do when you sleep and have a very peaceful night. Practice this in the daytime.

The instant in which you forget all your outside attachments will be the taste of tremendous Love and Happiness. Then slowly you will stop looking outside until the outside and the inside are the same causing both to cease to exist.

- Papaji, posted to AlongTheWay




The seed of mindfulness is in us, but we usually forget to water it.

We think that happiness is possible only in the future - when we get a house, a car, a Ph.D. We struggle in our mind and body, and we don't touch the peace and joy that are available right now-the blue sky, the green leaves, the eyes of our beloved.

What is most important? Many people have passed exams and bought houses and cars, and yet they are still unhappy.

What is most important in life is to find peace and to share it with others. To have peace, you can begin by walking peacefully. Everything depends on your steps.

-- Thich Nhat Hanh, from The Long Road Turns to Joy, posted to DailyDharma




Only breath.
Not Christian or Jew, or Muslim.
Not Hindu Buddhist, Hindu, Sufi of Zen.
Not any religion of cultural system
I'm nor from the east or the west.
Not out of the ocean, or up from the ground.
Not natural or ethereal.
Not composed of elements at all.
I do not exist.
Am not an entity, in the world, or the next.
Did not descend from Adam and Eve, or any origin story.
My place is the placeless,
the trace of the traceless,
neither body nor soul.

I belong to the beloved,
have seen the two worlds as one.
And that one called two, and know,
first, last, outer, inner.
Only that breath, breathing, human, being.

- Rumi, posted to The_Now2



At every instant the heart hears this call from the blazing
sun: "Renounce the torch of the earth and gain the torch of
beyond."

Since you are serving the Beloved, why hide?
Gold shines always brighter from the wounds inflicted by
the goldsmith.

Overwhelmed by the eternal Wine,The heart was reciting joyfully:
"The wine may tear my life away, it will give me another life."

- Rumi Ghazal 538, from Breathing Truth - Quotations from Jalaluddin Rumi - Selected and Translated by Muriel Maufroy, posted to Sunlight



Group: NDhighlights Message: 4709 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-09-18
Subject: #4709 - Monday, September 17, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee

#4709 -В Monday, September 17, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
В 
Moon and clouds are the same
В 
В 
Moon and clouds are the same;
mountain and valley are different.
All are blessed; all are blessed.
Is this one? Is this two?
В 
By Wu Men (Hui-k'ai)
(1183 - 1260)
В 
English version by Stephen Mitchell
В 
В 
В 
Full Moon And Lightning Storm Over The Miles River
photo by Peter Shefler
В 
В 

В 
There is a lake so tiny
that a mustard seed would cover it
easily, yet everyone drinks from this lake.
В 
Deer, jackals, rhinoceroses, and sea elephants
keep falling into it, falling and dissolving
almost before they have time to be born.
В 
В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В  - Lalla
В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В  14th Century North Indian mystic
В 
via Along The Way
В 

В 
В 
There are those who are constantly serving and loving all. And though a
spiritualВ thought may never have crossed their minds, these are the real
spiritually advanced people among us.В 
В 
~ Benny Silverman
В 

В 
В 
В 
The example used to illustrate the illusory nature of our sense of
separateness establishes a parallel between the way in which the individual's
energy manifests and what happens when a crystal-prism is placed in the
light of the sun: when the sun's light falls on a crystal, it is reflected,
refracted and decomposed by it, causing the appearance of rays and forms in
the colors of the spectrum which seem to be separate from the crystal, but
which are actually functions of the crystal's own nature.В 
В 
In the same way, what appears as a world of apparently external phenomena
is the energy of the individual him or herself, as perceived by his or her
senses. In truth, there is nothing external to, or separate from, the
individual, and all that manifests in the individual's field of experience is a
continuum, fundamentally free from duality and multiplicity: this is precisely
the `Great Perfection' that is discovered in Dzogchen.
В 
- Chogyal Namkhai NorbuВ 
В 
From the book, "The Crystal and the Way of Light: Sutra, Tantra and
Dzogchen," published by Snow Lion Publications.
via Daily Dharma
В 

В 
"When body and mind are together, you are fully present. You are fully alive
and you can touch the wonders of life that are available in the here and the
now. So you practice not only with your mind but with your body. Body and
mind should be experienced as one thing, not two. On that ground, you see
that everything you are looking for is already there. Whether it is
enlightenment, nirvana, liberation, Buddha, dharma, sangha, or happiness, it is
right there. In fact, that is the only place, the only moment, where you can
find these things."
В 
~Thich Naht Hanh
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4710 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-19
Subject: #4710 - Tuesday, September 18, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

#4710 - Tuesday, September 18, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

The Nonduality Highlights http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights/

В 


В 

В 

The Truth About Burning Man

http://lafrench.tv/2012/09/the-truth-about-burning-man/

byВ Jay Michaelson,В 09/08/09


Coated in gypsum dust, and still high not on drugs but on the altered consciousness of radical creativity and community, I had just tried to describe what Burning Man is, somehow. I think IÂ’d said something like, “ItÂ’s a temporary city of 50,000 people, devoted to radical self-expression. So youÂ’ll find anything youÂ’d find in a regular city — art museums, dance clubs, yoga studios — only in the middle of the desert, with no money, and with more creativity than youÂ’ve ever seen.”

Of the two descriptions, surely Rental Car GuyÂ’s is the more familiar. When Adam Lambert revealed that heÂ’d gotten the idea to go on American Idol while on mushrooms at Burning Man, America groaned. The image, I assume, was of a drugged-out weirdo coming up with a loopy idea in the middle of wild, crazy party.

The truth, though, is that Burning Man is an ideal place for self-reflection and self-transformation, whether substance-aided or not, and as someone whoÂ’s just gotten back from his 8th Burn, LambertÂ’s revelation didnÂ’t surprise me a bit. Friends of mine have changed their names, their professions, and their entire lives at Burning Man. And not because they were stoned or tripping, but because Black Rock City — the temporary city (built and erased within a month) where the event goes on every year, the week before Labor Day — has a tendency to expand horizons, reveal possibilities, and question the assumptions most of us make about how weÂ’re supposed to live our lives.

Burning Man does this, I think, because of a combination of factors. One of them is the sheer size and scope of the thing. 50,000 people. Hundreds of cars and trucks modified to look like dragons, whales, radios, and steamboats; many breathing fire; most with dozens of revelers dancing on them. ItÂ’s like “Mad Max” meets “Blade Runner” meets “The Ten Commandments,” and itÂ’s real, itÂ’s actually happening.

And itÂ’s happening without capitalism. ThereÂ’s no vending at Burning Man — itÂ’s a gift economy. Entire “theme camps” exist just to give away spaghetti, to serve people free margaritas, to make pancakes. Yes, it does cost a lot to get in (between $150-350), but that mostly pays for the rental of the land from the government, the porta-potties and other infrastructure, and grants made to large-scale art projects. No one — not the celebrity DJs who were there this year, like Armin van Buuren and Carl Cox, and not the people who build the solar electrical grid — gets paid. No one is making a buck.

This is incredibly liberating. ItÂ’s not sustainable, but it is a temporary autonomous zone of bullshit-free living. And just being there, just participating in the creation of an entire city devoted to what we want to do, rather than what we have to do to make money, has the tendency to invite self-reflection like LampertÂ’s. Who am I? What do I really want to be doing? If people can create a twelve-ton sculpture of a birdÂ’s nest made entirely out of plumbing pipe, what are the limits on my own creativity? “Once you are free,” said Baudrillard, “you are forced to ask who you are.”

The freedom is more than just freedom from conventional economic life, though. Yes, there are some naked people running around on drugs, because the culture of Black Rock City is a very, very liberal one. (ItÂ’s not free of law enforcement — this year in particular, I heard many stories of people being busted for drugs, and for giving alcohol to minor-aged-looking undercover cops.) Of course, how people choose to exercise that freedom is up to them. For every NPRAOD, IÂ’d guess there are two people wishing they had the courage to do so, one person playing the violin on a sofabed in the middle of a desert, two people cooking pumpkin ravioli, and another person writing the name of her beloved on the wooden walls of the Temple — this year a three-story, Lotus-shaped construction just north of the center of the city, that was burned last Sunday night.

Of course, we donÂ’t hear about these other people, which, to me, says more about the puerility of the default world than the sexuality of Black Rock City. ItÂ’s as if radical self expression is boring, but if it means naked people on drugs, then itÂ’s titillating, easy to condemn — and also comprehensible. Oh, I get it.

You donÂ’t get it. You donÂ’t get what itÂ’s like to have 50,000 people circle around a wooden effigy, with 1000 people spinning fire and 500 more playing drums, all encircled by 200 art cars — and then all roaring in unison as the effigy is set afire. You might think you get it, and it may scare or tempt or delight you, but I assure you, you donÂ’t get it. None of us do, because itÂ’s not about any one thing in particular; “it” can be an orgiastic celebration, or the sad mourning of a lost loved one. Or a warm, hippie-like community. Or a mean, Mad-Max-like apocalypse. “It” is chiefly a space in which all these things are possible.

The temporary erasure of societal, social, and personal boundaries is, for most of us, terrifying. Such boundaries help build the structures of society and self; they give form to human life, which is often chaotic and unpredictable. Thus they have been the bedrock of religious and civil life for millennia, even before the Furies were imprisoned under Athens, and Moses descended from Sinai.

But if religion creates boundaries, mysticism and spirituality efface them. In the transcendence of ordinary distinctions, peak experiences such as those encouraged at Burning Man give a glimpse of the ultimate, the infinite. It may seem absurd to suggest that Burning Man is a mystical event. But then, if itÂ’s just a big party, why is there a temple in the middle of it?

Group: NDhighlights Message: 4711 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-20
Subject: #4711 - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В 

#4711 - Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

The Nonduality Highlights http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights/

В 


В 

Assorted links and illusions in this issue featuring Mike, Maurizio, M, Stephen, Avaiya, and Cameron. Whew.

В 



In my view, 'off the grid'
is getting more crowded than the grid itself.
My advice is to move to the grid,
buy property on the grid,
and live baby live!

-Mike Himelstein

В 


В 

Concerning life on the grid, Maurizio and Zaya, organizers of the Science and Nonduality Conference (SAND), lost their home to a fire. They write in the recent SAND newsletter:

Spiritual maturity is being ready to let go everything. Giving up is a first step, but real giving-up is the insight that there's nothing to be given up, since nothing is your property.
~ Nisargadatta

Eight days ago our neighbor called and left us a message “You house is on fire.” Driving back to our home we could see the smoke from a distance and feel our hearts beating faster and fasterÂ… 6 fire trucks and 20 firefighters were fighting the power of the fire. We just sat on the side of the road and watchedÂ… It felt like a dream, surreal and yet very real because of all the smells and soundsÂ… There was nothing we could do or not doÂ…

For few days we were both expecting to wake up from this dream but even that hope soon faded, emotions of fear, sadness, despair, laughter, optimism came and went away and a feeling of complete surrender and a sense of aliveness came to being.

It has been a dramatic experience at times but there has been no drama, no story, no regret or desire to have things different then what they are...

Life goes on in it's impermanence and we do what we have to do. Having no possessions has been truly refreshing. The house was a beautiful SAND painting that blew in the wind and we'll do it again with the same joy and the same commitment as we did before... Our office is still functional and all “our” work has survived...

We have the joy to be able to share this story with you and if we look away from the computer the sun in shining, birds are singing, the wind is blowing and there is true sense of freedom in not having any desire or need for anything to be different from what is...

Isn't life marvelous???

Love, Maurizio & Zaya

~ ~ ~
В 
Read the entire newsletter here and go to one of the SAND conferences!
В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
Fourteen, fifteenВ years ago, when I was building http://nonduality.comВ and innovating a nonduality for the people -- whose spirit would be replicated by many over the years in the forms of websites, conferences, forums, and gatherings --В IВ  would spend hours putting up web pages for people. How many of you remember M? His pages are at http://nonduality.com/m.htm. MВ recently contacted me with some new writings to upload to his pages. Here's a sample:
В 
Markandeya Gita
В 
4. I have a dear brother in Shiva who lives in Connecticut. Some years ago we were on the topic of shaktipata--the descent of divine grace--and he remarked that it was similar to a cat with its caretaker. He went on to to say that "If a cat can't get his caretaker to give him a pat on the head, the cat will take it from him."
В 
I have found this to be true. My cat often comes up to me and, if I don't give her the attention she wants at that very moment, she will simply begin rubbing her head on my hand, my shinbone, or whatever she can put her face against.
В 
Shaktipat is like this. The great sage Baba Muktananda once narrated a story of four men who came into his room. He knew someone was going to receive shaktipat because he could feel it moving within him. Now, these four men were all at various levels of understanding. Baba went on to say that the man that one would think was the most qualified to receive shaktipat continued to just stand there, whilst the one that seemed the least qualified began to have spontaneous kriyas (movements). Like all great beings, Baba marveled at the play of Consciousness; the one that seemed least likely to receive shaktipat was the one that received it!
В 
O seekers of Truth, go before Shri Guru with a purified mind. Let go of all assumptions, ideas, judgements, and expectations about what is supposed to happen. Bring not the cares of your daily life with you before Shri Guru. Do not bring your intellect before Shri Guru. Intellect is inferior to intuition and is but another form of ego. Come with an empty mind that is one pointed with devotion. Like the cat, you must go before Shri Guru and brush your heart against his holy feet. With a purified mind and heart full of love, take what is yours.
В 
В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В В  ---Markandeya
В 
В 
В 

В 
В 
Dear Friends
В 
This is to let you know of a new departure, for me at least: I am doing a webinar through the Open Center in New York. That is a live 2-hour seminar open to anyone anywhere, just plug into it through your computer – so you can all have a front seat at it, from the comfort of your own home!
В 
The topic is Unlimited Compassion: the spiritual life and work of Ibn Г‚вЂ˜ArabiВ  and it will be an illustrated slideshow with pictures of Andalusia etc.
В 
Date: Saturday 13 October
В 
Time: 1-3pm EDT (which I think means 5-7pm GMT or 6-8pm in the UK because of summertime)
В 
В 
This is part of a series – the second will be done by Jane Carroll on Sunday November 4 (1-3pm EST)
http://www.opencenter.org/live-webinar-ibn-arabi-in-andalusia-form-and-meaning/
В 
Book for both and you get a discount!
В 
Hope to see/hear some of you there...
В 
Very best wishes
Stephen
--
Stephen Hirtenstein
Anqa Publishing
P.O.Box 1178
Oxford, OX2 8YS
U.K.
www.ibn-arabi.com
В 
В 

В 

AVAIYA, creators of positively uplifting films, is currently creating the new film,В  The Oneness Revolution.

The Oneness Revolution is the film that shares insights & stories from several of todayÂ’s top spiritual organizations & individuals leading humanity to a world of inclusivity and В mutual respect for all.

Featuring organizations like,В Centers for Spiritual Living, Reconciling Ministries Network,В Unity Church, Unitarian Universalists along with quantum physicists, Fred Alan Wolf, Amit Goswami, Stuart Hameroff & Will Arntz from What The Bleep and supporters like James Twyman from The Moses Code, Marci Shimoff & Joe Vitale from The Secret,В В and many others.

The Oneness Revolution is sure to support everyONE in opening our eyes to creating a world that works for everyone.

http://www.avaiya.com/upcoming-projects/the-oneness-revolution/

В 


В 

Highlights roving editor and long time partner in nondual crime Dustin LindenSmith has informed me that Cameron Reilly's new book, ebook, podcast isВ entitled The Three Illusions: Where Enlightenment Meets Science.

Info is here:В 

http://threeillusions.com/

CameronВ writes:

What are the “three illusions”?

1. The Illusion Of Free Will.
2. The Illusion Of Time.
3. The Illusion Of Identity.

Most people have a goal of being happy. Wealth, love, success, enlightenment, health – these are all goals people have with the ultimate desire of being happy. Unfortunately, happiness for most people involves a sequence of mental and emotional gymnastics that make it difficult to achieve and even harder to maintain. They achieve happiness momentarily, only to find life throws them a curveball and they lose their happiness again. They lose a job, a marriage fails, they canÂ’t pay the bills, they get sick – and suddenly they find that they are no longer happy.

This doesnÂ’t have to be the case.

This book is a guide for people who would like to be permanently happy, at peace with both yourself and the world.

It is a small book and is supposed to be a quick read. The ideas contained in it arenÂ’t complex and arenÂ’t new. You will have probably heard at least some of them before. The goals of this book is to take some fundamental concepts of science and use them to develop a philosophy of life.

IÂ’ve done my best to avoid using scientific terminology and metaphysical or philosophical jargon. Understanding the ideas contained in this book requires no scientific training, no years spent studying ancient texts or any supernatural abilities.

Group: NDhighlights Message: 4712 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-09-21
Subject: #4712 - Thursday, September 20, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
#4712 -В Thursday, September 20, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
В 
В 
Finding a Teacher
В 
In the woods I came on an old friend fishing
and I asked him a question
and he said Wait
В 
fish were rising in the deep stream
but his line was not stirring
but I waited
it was a question about the sun
В 
about my two eyes
my ears my mouth
my heart the earth with its four seasons
my feet where I was standing
where I was going
В 
it slipped through my hands
as though it were water
into the river
it flowed under the trees
it sank under hulls far away
and was gone without me
then where I stood night fell
В 
I no longer knew what to ask
I could tell that his line had no hook
I understood that I was to stay and eat with him
В 
W.S. Merwin
В 

В 
Just Now
В 
В 
In the morning as the storm begins to blow away
the clear sky appears for a moment and it seems to me
that there has been something simpler than I could ever
believe
simpler than I could have begun to find words for
not patient not even waiting no more hidden
than the air itself that became part of me for a while
with every breath and remained with me unnoticed
something that was here unnamed unknown in the days
and the nights not separate from them
not separate from them as they came and were gone
it must have been here neither early nor late then
by what name can I address it now holding out my thanks
В 
В 
W.S. Merwin
В 
В 

В 
EMERALD EDEN
В 
Some 40 years ago the renowned poet W.S. Merwin relocated to Maui, and made
a home on a piece of abused land. Since then he has planted thousands of palm
trees there, creating his own kind of Hawaiian paradise.В 
В 
В 
Merwin, in his greenhouse, came to Maui in the 1970s to study Zen Buddhism.В  A
friend told him of some available land on the coast. When he went toВ  investigate,
he says, "I heard plovers sailing overhead in pairs. I was hearingВ  the same clear,
rising notes that they called to each other on their longВ migration flights at
night over the sea. That sound was the first thing aboutВ  the place that caught
me, like the note of a bell." It was the beginning ofВ what was to become a grand
project. He has since planted some 850В different palm species on the property.В 
В 
Photograph by Diane Cook and Len JenshelВ 
В 
В 
В 

Group: NDhighlights Message: 4713 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-21
Subject: #4713 - Friday, September 21, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

#4713 - Friday, September 21, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

The Nonduality Highlights http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights/

В 


В 

Colin Drake responds to a reader

Colin's e- and hard cover books are available through

http://nonduality.com/colindrake.htm

В 

Here is an e-mail exchange I had with a reader of one of my books. I have re-ordered them so as to give the Г‚вЂ˜flowÂ’ of the exchange.В 

В 

Hi Colin,

IÂ’ve read almost your entire output of literature and even gave a 5-star critique to your writing. I have a full intellectual grasp of the principles of non-duality, and have studied the work of the great sages for several years. The problem, and it is quite severe, is that I am unable to apply this knowledge on an experiential level in my every day life. I would enjoy chatting with you by any means (Skype, email, telephone, etc.) in the hope that I can practically apply the knowledge I have gained over the years. At present, there remains substantial neurotic fear and identification with thought and the “small” self, while realizing my true nature seems elusive (even though itÂ’s always here!). Perhaps you could respond with some suggestions or guidance, both of which would be very welcome at this point.

Best Regards,

XXXX

В 

В 

Dear XXXX, В In reply I would have to say just continue what you started when you wrote (earlier):

В 

In particular, IÂ’ve finally started to realize that periods of extreme emotional turmoil, which always seemed so debilitating and all-consuming, are nevertheless simply ephemeral thoughts and feelings which arise in this Awareness. They are seen to have no independent nature (or “power”) independent of awareness. This realization has been a great relief.

В 

As you so correctly say it is a 'great relief' and if cultivated will completely solve your problem .... This may (will) take time to become completely established, as you know, but that is no reason to abandon the attempt. In fact now that you have tasted this 'relief' I doubt that you could abandon it! This is not an occupation for the dilettante, requiring total commitment , but the glimpses provide proof of the possible final outcome. Actually it requires one to be totally ruthless with the mind when it comes up with its old tricks to reassert control. As I have said before when it comes to identity do not believe a single thought but rely on experiential investigation. I suggest you use the procedure outlined in Investigation of Experience, chapter two of Beyond, every morning and evening, until some degree of establishment has occurred. I did this for ten years after I first developed it and still do occasionally ...

В 

Also the other practice (Love Loving Itself from Awakening and Beyond) I sent is very useful as itВ contains noВ reference to the small self and consists of consciousness using mind/body purely as an instrument ... which is all it is, nothing more!В 

As Gangaji would say 'Buck Up!', even Papaji said he required to be vigilant with every breath, and Ramana said that self-realization is easy

but after that the work starts! So let's keep working together whilst stopping to enjoy the view when the sacred glimpses occur, Love, Colin

The following day I added:

В 

В Dear XXXX, Although I completely stand by my earlier reply I realize that you were hoping for some new insight to help you deal with your Г‚вЂ˜problemÂ’. This morning when I read Г‚вЂ˜self-grasping is to be totally forsakenÂ’ in my latest poem it crystallized something that I had been mulling over for some time. That is that even beyond self-grasping, which implies selfishness or compulsive thinking about oneself, self-referencing is the cause of most of our psychological problems. To highlight this here are two stanzas from different poems:

В 

When we say Г‚вЂ˜IÂ’,

ItÂ’s often a lie.

Denoting an apparently separate being,

From its looming extinction fleeing Â…

В 

In fact we should studiously avoid,

Any thought which objectifies the Г‚вЂ˜IÂ’,

Which is pure Awareness and thus devoid,

Of characteristics Â… the subjective Г‚вЂ˜eyeÂ’.

For as soon as we use the word Г‚вЂ˜IÂ’ (or think it) most of us are immediately identifying ourselves as an object. Your comment “At present, there remains substantial neurotic fear and identification with thought and the Г‚вЂ˜smallÂ’ self, while realizing my true nature seems elusive (even though itÂ’s always here!)” is a classic example. I know in my own case that as soon as I start judging, or evaluating, myself in any way this can cause mental suffering and is initiated by self-referencing. This is very insidious as most of us have been doing this all of our lives and we are encouraged to do so by western psychology, self help books, and even many Г‚вЂ˜spiritual pathsÂ’! Whereas, if this is abandoned, which it has to be for there is no separate Г‚вЂ˜IÂ’ (small self), then the problem vanishes.

В 

There seem to me to be two ways to overcome this which need to go hand-in-hand. Firstly by continued investigation to discover that which is deeper than Г‚вЂ˜I”, pure awareness, which will lead to overcoming misidentification of ourselves as separate objects. Secondly by remaining vigilant (alert) to every occurrence of the word Г‚вЂ˜IÂ’ in our thoughts and evaluating these to see if they imply a separate object. If they do then instantly recognize that there is awareness of this thought and you are this awareness!

В 

Once one has reached the stage that these investigations into the thought Г‚вЂ˜IÂ’ reveal no misidentification, and thus cause no suffering, then there is no problem with using the term (I). For it is very difficult to operate in the world without this term, as you can see I use it a lot!В  But in the beginning one needs to be aware that its use can contains this insidious problem of self-referencing, and in most cases probably does! This seems to me to be the Г‚вЂ˜original sinÂ’ caused by (eating the apple of) discursive knowledge, that of separation, objectification, analysis and judging. However, if you realize that the term (I) is used in a purely conventional sense to denote the particular manifestation (and instrument) of Consciousness that is speaking (or thinking) then there is no problem. In fact this is Self-referencing, realizing the Self, which is the Totality of Being, consciousness at rest and in motion.

В 

So it is very useful to investigate every use of the term Г‚вЂ˜IÂ’ to find out what this is implying. The key is that if this causes any mental suffering then self-referencing is occurring, and that investigation is needed to transform this into Self-referencing. After some time the latter will become second nature and the problem will no longer occur.

В 

Colin's e- and hard cover books are available through

http://nonduality.com/colindrake.htm

Group: NDhighlights Message: 4714 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-09-25
Subject: #4714 - Monday, September 24, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee

#4714 -В Monday, September 24, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
В 
"When the mind is possessed of reality, it feels tranquil and joyous even without
music or song, and it produces a pure fragrance even without incense or tea."
В 
~ Hung Tzu-chÂ’engВ 
В 
From the book: “A Chinese Garden of serenity,” published by Peter Pauper Press.
via Daily Dharma
В 

В 
В 
It is the clinging to the false that makes the true so difficult to see. Once youВ 
understand that the false needs time and what needs time is false, you are nearer
the Reality, which is timeless, ever in the now. Eternity in time is mereВ 
repetitiveness, like the movement of a clock. It flows from the past into theВ 
future endlessly, as empty perpetuity. Reality is what makes the present soВ 
vital, so different from the past and future, which are merely mental. If youВ 
need time to achieve something, it must be false. The real is always with you; you
need not wait to be what you are. Only you must not allow your mind to go out
of yourself in search. When you want something, ask yourself: do I really need
it?В  and if the answer is no, then just drop it.В 
В 
~В Nisargadatta MaharajВ 
В 
via Along The Way
В 

В 
В 

В 
photo by Alan Larus
В 
В 
Was it Light?
В 
By Theodore Roethke
(1908 - 1963)
В 
В 
В 
Was it light?
Was it light within?
Was it light within light?
Stillness becoming alive,
Yet still?
В 
A lively understandable spirit
Once entertained you.
It will come again.
Be still.
Wait.
В 
В 

www.Poetry-Chaikhana.com

В 

В 
photo by Alan Larus
В 
В 
Nocturne
В 
By Andrew Colliver
(1953 - )
В 
В 
В 
You are woken in the night
by something that cannot speak
in daylight, that has no purchase
in the hard currency of your life.
В 
Outside is the shallow well
of a sleeping town; electric lights
peek faintly into black space,
and the lithe ghost of the dark
В 
slips into the only house that
bids it welcome. Your husband
lies snoring, dreams of another
world, offers you rough the gift
В 
of aloneness. Know this:
what arrives here cannot
be other than itself, and
has no care for you. It
В 
has no words, and no respect
for yours, so finds your body,
colonises your spine, feeds
you up into the sea of stars. You
В 
may think you are changing,
or hope; but you are simply
failing to forget, allowing
stillness to be recognised.
В 
You are momentarily disappearing,
to enter your own voice, see
with your own eyes, become
the body you gave birth to;
В 
you have returned to
your own faithfulness,
your own unimaginable
emptiness.
В 
В 
В 
- From the unpublished manuscript A Day of Light, by Andrew Colliver

Andrew Colliver is a psychiatric social worker working in rural New South
Wales in Australia.
В 
His major influences in writing are Mary Oliver and David Whyte, "with a dash
of Rumi's exuberance."
В 
When asked about the transcendent themes within his poetry, he says, "Poetry
has always been a part of my reading, with occasional forays into writing, but
for my own eyes only. Then, in 2006, the experience -- now happening to
thousands across the globe -- of consciousness awakening to itself within the
human form, began to up-end my life, and also to seek expression in words. Poems
suggest themselves from the more profound experiences of awakeness, and what
I do is then sculpt and refine them into something that I hope is intelligible to
others. Ideas and words come most frequently when I'm in nature, but any
setting can be seen at any time for what it is: the expression of undivided
consciousness."

www.Poetry-Chaikhana.com

В 

Group: NDhighlights Message: 4715 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-26
Subject: #4715 - Tuesday/Wednesday, September 25-26, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Kat

#4715 - Tuesday/Wednesday, September 25-26, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

The Nonduality Highlights http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights/

В 


В 

Tonight is Yom Kippur. Jay Michaelson, Jeff Foster, James Traverse, and Tbony are featured in writings found via their Facebook entries.

В 


В 

JAY MICHAELSON

Getting Over the Judging God -- A Yom Kippur Reflection

Posted: 10/05/11 11:12 AM ET

The Jewish High Holidays are an ironic time. It's the time more Jews go to synagogue than any other, yet it foregrounds a theology least likely to appeal to them, one highlighting sin and repentance, judgment and guilt. Is this a good thing?

This is not, strictly speaking, a theological question; it is a psychological one. Let us set aside the question of whether God actually exists. We know, most of us, that our images of God are metaphors, invented for our benefit. So the question really is whether this particular image -- the judging God -- is helpful or harmful.

To be sure, it's not an either/or decision. In Jewish tradition, God is both the dayan emet, the true judge, and harachaman, the compassionate/womb-like one. God is Mother, Father and Friend; Teacher, Consoler and Lover. For that matter, God is Everything and Nothing, Immanent and Transcendent, Earth and Sky. Surely, the Kabbalists were right that, experientially, we humans relate to the Infinite according to traits, genders, energies and perspectives that are different for different people and at different moments. So it is not that the judging God is the only God-image we have.

But on Yom Kippur, He (and He is a He) is the dominant one. So the question remains: Is it a good image to have, or a bad one?

Today, many object to the image of the judging God on the grounds of history. How can we speak of a God who judges in the wake of the outrage of the Holocaust? Surely, this objection argues, whatever we may wish to say about God, we cannot say that God judges fairly.

Others object to the image on the bases of gender, politics and family psychology: This judging God is like an abusive father (or husband), they say, meting out punishment and doling out rewards from above. We would all be better off without such an exemplar of abuse, patriarchy and hierarchy.

Still others, and I may be among them, object to the image of the judging God on psychological grounds. Much of what we ascribe to noble motives of repentance is really just guilt warmed over. I learned this the hard way, as I came to accept my sexuality, and slowly understood that so much of my own theological talk was just plain old guilt and self-hatred.

This is true for all of us. Is it really such a healthy thing to feel oneself to be inadequate, judged and deficient? Does it really make us better people, or does it just make us tougher, more defensive and more judgmental ourselves? Does it comport with mystical experience, which radiates acceptance and compassion? Does God judge us, or only love?

I do not have a neat answer to these questions, but I want to suggest that while the judging God is an image of God that is experientially accurate, it is ultimately something to be transcended.

First, guilt is part of human nature, and not an entirely bad part; it keeps us honest, checks the ego, and reminds us that we all have the capacity to be selfish and cruel. The judging God, in this light, is simply the superego projected toward the heavens; it accords with our experience of remorse. And as a form of social control, it is an effective story that doubtless keeps many of us from acting on our baser instincts. It just needs periodic updating from time to time.

But the essential part of this image, particularly on Yom Kippur, is that it is not a static one. God judges in order to inspire us to change, in order that God can forgive. Again, let's stay with experience, not myth. The point is that we judge ourselves so that we can introspect, right our wrong behaviors, taste the sweetness of forgiveness -- and then move on. The catharsis of Yom Kippur serves its function, and then ends. The shofar is sounded, the book is closed, the process is complete.

Or is it? Actually, the tradition says, the book is really open for another couple of weeks. And God is always watching you and always judging. And it never ends. I remember, during my more observant days, debating whether to eat non-kosher-supervised cheese, a legal debate that goes on within the Conservative movement to this day. Believe it or not, I really racked my brain and searched my heart over this technical halachic issue. The rules seemed nonsensical. But was I just trying to rationalize doing what I wanted? Did God really care? Was the system out of whack, or was I being lazy and indulgent?

Today, the whole thing looks like neurosis. Yes, there's a certain nobility to suffusing every aspect of one's life with holiness and participating in a millennia-old tradition of law. But all this angst -- about cheese! Couldn't the emotional energy be better spent on giving more money to the poor, rectifying the sins of racism and sexism, or, well, just about anything? Is the sense of God's judgment helping us do what's right, or making us neurotic about anything and everything?

The narrative arc of judging-introspection-forgiveness remains, for me, an important one, because it calls attention to my own tendency to judge myself and my attendant need to forgive. But if it gets stuck in the middle, it turns into craziness.

It would be funny, if it weren't tragic. Because with judgment comes -- if we judge ourselves worthy -- arrogance, self-justification and the judging of others, or -- if we do not -- self-hatred, anxiety and defense mechanisms aplenty. We make ourselves tough, argumentative and always right because we fear that otherwise we will be found lacking.

The judging God is a stage along the psychological path, both individually and communally. It is important to hold ourselves to a high standard of ethical, and possibly ritual, behavior. But at a certain point, it becomes more important to forgive ourselves for not meeting that standard -- and, as a culture, to learn to be more loving and understanding, less judgmental and strict. Of course, there are always personal and political instances where strictness is appropriate. But do we really think that what the world needs now is more judgment?

It's a shame that so many Jews go to shul only on the Days of Awe. I wish they would turn up for the Days of Love, Rest and Celebration (Sukkot and Shabbat are good starts, as are meditation retreats). Those, it seems to me, are what we need more of: more love, more authenticity, more openness. And they yield experiences of something which deserves to be named as "God."

When love, rather than judgment, fills my heart, I see a natural world which we are lucky to inhabit, in bodies which are miraculous in construction, and I feel loved in return. I feel the imperative to pursue justice, not out of judgment or toughness, but out of compassion. Terrible things still happen. But I feel God's presence in the companionship and response to such adversity, in intimacy, in love, in the healing and the mending.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jay-michaelson/getting-over-the-judging-_b_976462.html

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В 

JEFF FOSTER (www.lifewithoutacentre.com)

ON HOLY GROUND

They say to look upon God's face
Would be unbearable
We would be blinded by light

Then I have died a thousand times over
I have burnt at the stake of existence
All images of myself have melted
And even that cannot be true

And I say 'God'
But I have to laugh -
The word has lost all meaning

God is only a metaphor
For this fragile gift of a life
For this precious moment, unrepeatable
For this consciousness, unspeakable

For a familiar look on a stranger's face
For those icy winter branches
For each footstep, falling

There is no unholy ground

В 


В 

JAMES TRAVERSE


From Separation to Source: the experiential understanding of your true nature is a point of view - a stance.

Observe a tree and note that it branches down as roots and up as trunk and branches and that its branches branch; note that it has many thousands of leaves and that when you focus on a single leaf it appears to be separate and distinct and that when you relax that focus it is evident that that the leaves, branches, etc. all arise out of [are the expression of] a common source.

Similarly the experiential understanding of your true nature is realized via the relaxation out of the conditioned focus on you as a separate individual to stand as the source that you are.

В 


В 

TBONY COATES

What is on my mind?
I have never been able to find it so I have no idea.

When I do, I might have something nonsensical say.


В 
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4716 From: Gloria Lee Date: 2012-09-28
Subject: #4716 - Thursday, September 27, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
#4716 -В Thursday, September 27, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
В 
В 
В 
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world, Wake now, discover that
you are the song that the morn-inÂ’ brings.
В 
Rabjam, Longchen , (Longchenpa) via Gary Falk on Facebook
В 
В 

В 
"One Tibetan monk... who had spent more than 18 years in a Chinese prison labor
camp... told me that on a few occasions he really faced some danger. So I asked
him, 'What danger? What kind of danger?', thinking he would tell me of Chinese
torture and prison. He replied, 'Many times I was in danger of losing compassion
for the Chinese.'"
В 
~ The Dalai Lama

В 
В 
В 
During the 1939-1945 World War I was sent away from home to escape the
devastation caused by the bombing of the City of Liverpool by the German
Luftwaffe.
В 
I need but take one page, one sunny Sunday morning out of the story that
unfolded throughout the days of my sojourn with the kindly Sam and Betty
Armstrong, and compare it with BlakeÂ’s lines from his poem,
В 
THE AUGORIES OF INNOCENCE
“To see a world in a grain of sand
and a heaven in a wild flower,
hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
and eternity in an hour.”
В 
Looking back in memory I recall that the entire universe was manifested right
there outside the old oaken doors of that Chapel in a corner of the Welsh
countryside, the red-flowers, geraniums spread the ground with crimson, their
heavy aroma permeating the air, I sat amongst them and flew away to unknown
lands, they carried me to worlds that arose in my imagination and brought me
back safely. There was an old barn next to the Chapel, its boards grey and
whitened with the sunÂ’s rays and the winter rain, as one enters the barn there is
a warm smell in the air, it is everywhere, it is in the sunlight falling through the
rafters, in the secluded shadows that hide in corners, in the old wood that the
barn is constructed from . . . horses, it is the smell of horses, unique and not
unpleasant to the nostrils, if one closes one's eyes and opens one's ears there is
the sound of quivering breath, at first there is an edginess and caution upon it
which subsides when one reaches out one's hand and touches the satin-feel of hot
horse-hide. There was a stream outside the Chapel with lilies in the shallows,
flag-Iris, reeds, water-weed and a stone built bridge where I would sit for
eternities gazing at the fish making their way downstream, gliding over the grey,
black and white pebbles down to the river and on to the sea. And the soil, the
dank, dark soil, the earth almost black, a handful grasped in ones hand crumbles
through ones fingers like black gold-dust, the substance of Mother Earth out of
which I am made, She is what I am composed of and to where I shall return when
my days are done. Everything was there in that green heaven, God and Her angels
were there, illimitable beauty and splendour condensed into a single hour on a
Sunday morning walking through the imagination of a small boy from the grimy
back-streets of an inner-city plagued by the results of greed, war, turmoil and
differences of opinion . . . and yet, amongst that particular devastation there can
be seen glimpses of beauty, acts of kindness, gestures of love and compassion, it
takes only a moment to stop and look beyond the weeping eyes of sorrow and
loss, to see behind the tears, for where there is darkness there must needs be
light.
В 
~ Tom McFerran
В 
В 
В 
В 

В 
"If you are happy practicing with the sky,
Clouds are the sky's magical creations.
Be the sky itself.
В 
If you are happy practicing with the sun and moon,
Planets and stars are their magical creations.
Be the sun and moon.
В 
If you are happy practicing with the mountain,
Grass and trees are the mountain's magical creations.
Be the mountain itself.
В 
If you are happy practicing with the ocean,
Waves are the ocean's magical creations.
Be the ocean itself.
В 
If you are happy practicing with mind,
Thoughts are the mind's magical creations.
Be mind itself."
В 
~ Milarepa
В 
via Daily Dharma
В 

В 
В 
Bronze sculptures by UK artist Sukhi Barber who spent twelve years in Kathmandu,
Nepal studying Buddhist philosophy and lost-wax bronze casting.
В 

В 
Throw everything away, forget about it all!В  You are
learning too much, remembering too much, trying to hard..
relax a little bit, give life a chance to flow its own way,
unassisted by your mind and effort.В  Stop directing the
riverÂ’s flow!
В 
В В В В В В В В В В В  - Mooji
Group: NDhighlights Message: 4717 From: Jerry Katz Date: 2012-09-29
Subject: #4717 - Friday, September 28, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
В #4717 - Friday, September 28, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

The Nonduality Highlights http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights/

В 


В 

Wayne Ferguson sends today's feature.

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В 

http://daodejingle.net/wheel.html

Verse 11 The Wheel

The empty hub at center
Allows a wheel to roll
The vacancy within defines
The function of a bowl

The openness within a house
Provides the places to reside
The open space that is the heart
Is where ten thousand things abide

Commenting on verse 11, Ursula Le Guin says, "One of the things I love about Lao Tzu is he is so funny. He's explaining a profound and difficult truth here, one of those counter-intuitive truths that, when the mind can accept them, suddenly doubles the size of the universe. He goes about it with this deadpan simplicity, talking about pots."

Seeing the Dao (the whole) "suddenly doubles the size of the universe." That's how it feels to me, and that's how it felt when I first discovered it, that is, saw IT. Call it a kind of quiet joy. I find it to be a feeling of satisfaction and completion and sufficiency. It was a great surprise when I first saw it after reading Chapter One of Douglas Harding's On Having No Head. It's still a little surprising when it comes to awareness. To see one's universe double! What a gift!

The wheel is a wonderfully precise image for the Dao. Douglas Harding had wheels of his own. He called them maps. One of his maps is pictured on the left. [If you cannot see the graphic within this message, please view it at http://daodejingle.net/wheel.html.]В 

The maps are wheels with their spokes going out in all directions from the hub. This wheel is a map of my first-person private identity, of myself as I am to myself. At the center is the hub, the empty (Laozi's word) and faceless (Douglas's word) center of my presence (you), a nonpresence (wu)in fact.

Here at the hub I AM pure capacity or awareness. How do I look to myself from this hub? What do I see when I look outward and downward at the spokes of the wheel?

You can try it for yourself. Spread your arms in front of you by about 160 degrees, just to the point where they come into view and frame your world. Look down at your feet. Bring your attention up to your chest. Do you see the line on your chest where your view of your body ends? Below that line is awareness only (I AM) and absence or nonpresence (I AM NOT), both clearly in your view as shown on the map or wheel.

Now look straight out. In the nearer regions, you see the place where humans reside. With a large mirror you can even see your own public appearance. Look beyond this human region and you see the scenery. Farther still you see the heavens, the sun, planets, stars, and galaxies. It's all part of who you really are. It's what's presented to the hub of the wheel, to your own aware center.

Now look within. It's easy to do. Point a finger at the place where others see your face. Do you see a face? Or do you see emptiness (wu), empty and aware capacity for the world of appearances, the realm of I AM NOT?

The hub is the center, the heart, the place of faceless awareness. It's also still, empty, single, and constant. The spokes are many, but they converge in the one hub of all. The spokes are not constant. They change positions. This verse sums it all up in one homely image, the wheel.

So what is the Dao? What is my real identity? Is it the Hub? Is it the Whole wheel—both the hub and the spokes? Inwardly I AM NOT. Outwardly I AM ALL. At the hub and center I AM.

For more a detailed discussion about the wheel as a Daoist image, see page 27 of Hans-Georg Moeller's Daoism Explained:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0812695631/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=0812695631&linkCode=as2&tag=nondualitysal-20

В 

Group: NDhighlights Message: 4718 From: Mark Date: 2012-09-30
Subject: #4718 - Saturday, September 22, 2012
Archived issues of the NDHighlights are available online: http://nonduality.com/hlhome.htm

Nonduality Highlights Issue #4718, Saturday, September 22, 2012





Longchenpa's 30 Pieces of Sincere Advice

From the infinite sky of your pristine awareness, the totality
of experience, and the great clouds of your aspirations and prayers
Warm rays of compassion and showers of elixir stream down,
Ripening the three forms in the fields, your students' minds.
I bow to you, my teacher, my protector, supreme among the Three Jewels

. With stronger aspirations I might have joined the practice lineage.
I didn't make the effort and now enter the twilight of a meaningless life.
I intended to follow the ancient masters,
but I've given up and I see others like me.
So, I'll outline these thirty pieces of sincere advice
to evoke some determination in me.

Too bad! You've built up a large following, one way or another.
You look after a large institution where all the right conditions are present.
But it's all just a basis for conflict and ideas like "This is mine."
Live alone – that's my sincere advice.

In public ceremonies you heal children or subdue demons.
You give your capabilities away to the crowd.
Because you really want food and money, your own needs cloud your judgment.
Tame your own mind – that's my sincere advice.

You collect a lot of pledges from the poor
And use them to build big monuments, help the needy, and so on.
The good works you do cause others to live badly.
Goodness must be in your mind – that's my sincere advice.

You've taught the Dharma to others because you wanted to be famous.
You cleverly keep a large circle of admirers around you.
To take these to be real is the seed of pride.
Limit your projects – that's my sincere advice.

You earn money by trading, charging interest, cheating or other dishonest ways.
Although you make large offerings with your accumulated wealth,
Good actions based on greed lead to the eight conventional concerns.
Cultivate non-attachment – that's my sincere advice.

Although you think you're serving the welfare of beings
By acting as a guarantor, witness or advocate to help settle others' disputes,
Your own opinions will inevitably assert themselves.
Don't be concerned – that's my sincere advice.

Your political power, wealth, connections, good fortune and reputation
May spread all over the world.
When you die, these things will not help you at all.
Work at your practice – that's my sincere advice.

Managers, assistants, directors, and such
Provide the infrastructure for both communities and religious institutions.
But your involvement in such matters gives rise to worry and concern.
Limit your business – that's my sincere advice.

You take what you need, images, offerings,
Books, cooking gear, whatever, and stay in solitude.
Right now you have it all together but later difficulties and disputes arise.
Don't need anything – that's my sincere advice.

The three forms (three kayas) are the form of what is (dharmakaya), the form of enrichment (sambhogakaya) and the form of manifestation (nirmanakaya).
Pleasure and pain, gain and loss, praise and blame, fame and obscurity.
The course of every intellectual, if he pursues his journey long and
unflinchingly enough, ends in the obvious, from which the
non-intellectuals have never stirred.

In these difficult times you may feel that it is helpful
To be sharp and critical with aggressive people around you.
This approach will just be a source of distress and confusion for you.
Speak calmly – that's my sincere advice.

Intending to be helpful and without personal investment,
You tell your friends what is really wrong with them.
You may have been honest but your words gnaw at their heart.
Speak pleasantly – that's my sincere advice.

You engage in discussions, defending your views and refuting others'
Thinking that you are clarifying the teachings.
But this just gives rise to emotional posturing.
Keep quiet – that's my sincere advice.

You feel that you are being loyal
By being partial to your teacher, lineage or philosophical tradition.
Boosting yourself and putting down others just causes hard feelings.
Have nothing to do with all this – that's my sincere advice.

As you carefully go over the teachings you've studied
You may think that picking out others' mistakes is real understanding.
You will just build up a lot of negative fixations.
Keep your perception clear – that's my sincere advice.

Mindless talk of emptiness ignores causation.
You may think the ultimate teaching is that there is nothing to do,
But when you stop the two ways of growing, [3] your practice will wither.
Cultivate these two together – that's my sincere advice.

You think that you will enhance your practice by taking a partner
And transforming sexual energy in the context of the third empowerment,
But the path of non-retention has snared many great meditators.
Keep to the natural path – that's my sincere advice.

Giving empowerments to those who aren't ready,
Or even distributing sacred materials in large gatherings,
Leads to abuse and causes commitments to be broken.
Be precise – that's my sincere advice.

You may think that you practice deliberate behavior
By going naked in public and shocking people in other ways.
Such actions just cause ordinary people not to trust the Dharma.
Be impeccable – that's my sincere advice.

You work at being ethical, learned, and noble
So that you will be the best person in your district.
But from this peak you can only fall to a lower status.
Be moderate – that's my sincere advice.

Wherever you live, in towns, spiritual communities or in isolation,
Don't seek out special friends.
Don't be close or at odds with anyone, no matter who is around.
Be independent – that's my sincere advice.

Maybe you appear deferential and appreciative
To your faithful supporters who provide you with your livelihood,
But in deceiving others you only entangle yourself.
Treat everyone equally – that's my sincere advice.

Countless books on divination, astrology, medicine and other subjects
Describe ways to read signs. They do add to your learning,
But they generate new thoughts and your stable attention breaks up.
Cut down on this kind of knowledge – that's my sincere advice.

You stop arranging your usual living space,
But make everything just right for your retreat.
This makes little sense and just wastes time.
Forget all this – that's my sincere advice.

You make an effort at practice and become a good and knowledgeable person.
You may even master some particular capabilities.
But whatever you attach to will tie you up.
Be unbiased and know how to let things be – that's my sincere advice.

You may think awakened activity means to subdue skeptics
By using sorcery, directing or warding off hail or lightning, for example.
But to burn the minds of others will lead you to lower states.
Keep a low profile – that's my sincere advice.

Maybe you collect a lot of important writings,
Major texts, personal instructions, private notes, whatever.
If you haven't practiced, books won't help you when you die.
Look at the mind – that's my sincere advice.

When you focus on practice, to compare understandings and experience,
Write books or poetry, to compose songs about your experience
Are all expressions of your creativity. But they just give rise to thinking
. Keep yourself free from intellectualization – that's my sincere advice.

When a thought arises, the key is to look right at it.
When you know about mind, the key is to be right there.
Although there isn't anything to cultivate, the key is to keep cultivating.
Keep yourself free of distraction – that's my sincere advice.

Act from emptiness knowing the effects of your actions.
When you understand not doing, observe the three vows.
With non-referential compassion work to help beings
Keep the two ways of growing inseparable – that's my sincere advice.

I've studied with many learned and masterful teachers and received their profound instruction.
I've read some profound sutras and tantras and understood a little of them.
But I don't practice what I know. It's too bad. I just fool myself.
So, for me and those like me I offer these thirty pieces of sincere advice.

May the good from writing these verses with this attitude of determination
Guide all beings out of the desolation of existence and bring them great joy.
May we follow the way of the buddhas of the three times, their followers and the ancient masters,
And become their great and powerful offspring as well.

- Thirty Pieces of Sincere Advice was written by Tsultrim Lodru out of some slight feelings of determination. Ken McLeod translated this work because it spoke to him.


#4719 - Monday, October 1, 2012 - Editor: Gloria Lee
 
 
Awakening Clarity 2.0!
 
Fred Davis has a couple of big announcements. A new look and easier navigation 
on the website AND a new book, Beyond Recovery, coming out in December. In 
my opinion, Fred does some of the most interesting interviews of current 
teachers, and he writes terrific book reviews in the area of nonduality and 
advaita. See the link to his Amazon reviews. The current Guest Teacher is Joan 
Tollifson, and you can also read the first chapter of her new book, Nothing To 
Grasp. 
 
 
Both Joan's and Fred's books can be ordered from Non-Duality Press.
http://non-dualitypress.org/
 
Editor's correction: Several people wrote to tell me the quote by Longchenpa 
in my last issue was actually words to A Grateful Dead song. If you go to the page 
http://artsites.ucsc.edu/GDead/agdl/eyes.html#eyes it explains in detail that a
book,  entitled "You are the eyes of the world" is a new translation of the noted
Buddhist  practitioner Longchenpa's practical guide to the tantra. The lyrics
which make up the quote given ARE in the book, as "part of Hunter's lyrics are
printed opposite the title page". Golly, I hope they gave Hunter credit. (Thanks, Mark)
 

 
 
Beyond Recovery is about a quantum expansion of our understanding and 
experience of life. It can be discovered and lived within, or after successful 
addiction recovery. Actually, recovery has nothing to do with all of this, except 
that if we have already lived through that type of personal failure, and found 
redemption through surrender, then we are essentially set up for a "spiritual 
awakening," as this quantum expansion is often referred to. The spiritual 
awakening spoken of here is not the same thing as is generally referred to in 
other areas of religion, spirituality, or recovery. People do come to Nondual 
awareness through those traditions, but it's rare. Here it's our foremost goal. 
What is meant by this teaching's awakening will be made clear as we go along. 
 
It will be my personal blog-within-a-blog, and will address all things Nondual
from the standpoint of recovery. I'll be updating it more regularly than I do the
main page, so check back at least once a week. If you're interested in recovering
from your primary addiction--the craving for a separate self, this might be the
place for you.
 
 

 
Blog excerpt:
 
In general, the people who will wake up are the people who want it most, and who
therefore will do the most to get it. If this movement is the primary focus of
your life every single day I just don't see how you're not going to end up waking
up. I drove everyone around me crazy for a long, long time, and that's fine.
Awakeness swooped in and took me. That is worth any amount of hurt feelings or
skepticism.
 
Let's recognize that ego very much wants to be enlightened. What a special
story! So it'll drag you around from time to time, and maybe even from place to
place, but it never really gets serious in a 24/7/365,
never-back-away-from-the-table fashion. It may buy you a lot of books and
DVD's, and it may move forward in great strides, but then it backs away in baby
steps every time it feels truth looming really large and close.
 
Ego will spin you endless tales of what progress you're making, but if when you
bump up against the truth of your being you find yourself recoiling, it may be
that you just don't want to die to the truth. Fine, you don't have to, and you
probably won't. By in large, awakening takes willing victims. God knows I wanted
to die to the truth--I would have been happy to die to a .357 Magnum, if I'd
thought it wouldn't wreck Betsy, who'd had a key person commit suicide just a
few years before.
 
I don't recommend you get yourself in that kind of spot, but I do recommend
that you take a hard look at your motives and your methods. Like the bottom
that most addicts hit before they will get honest, most people who recover from
their primary addiction--the craving for a separate self--have to reach a similar
bottom. Suffering is our friend over and over again in life. It always tells us the
truth: if we find ourselves in that friend's company, then we're in denial. It's
just that simple.
 
Let us assume for the sake of this article that you have found yourself in
contact with a vividly awake, and trustworthy teacher. Do you take their advice
until it bumps up against a precious personal belief, some intellectual position,
and then think, "I don't think they have that part right, at least not for me."
Odds are they have it exactly right for exactly you. It is a fool's mistake to sell
your teacher short. Once you get on this side of things, so to speak, this ain't
rocket science.
 
Any authentic teacher you allow to know you is aware of precisely where you are
on your path. It's a known path to them: they've been there, the same way that a
recovery sponsor has. You can't bullshit a person who's been through it.
Secondly, your teacher, just like a sponsor, knows where you're trying to get,
even though you don't. You can't lead yourself to a place you've never been, but
that's what all of us try to do--until we don't.
 
I wouldn't surrender my judgment, my bank account, or my body to a teacher,
unless I wanted to leave the spiritual path for the duration and return to it
after I'd had my egoic pleasures fulfilled. You get what you want when you want
it. But I did surrender my resistance to their teaching.
Fred Davis

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