Jerry Katz
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Highlights #604

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Monday January 29th

On the earthquake:

Thank you for your post Frankji and for raising points worth pondering.
Although dramatic events draw our attention and the heart breaking stories
are hard to bear, suffering seems universal and is not limited to one
country, continent, nationality, race, or creed. We all respond to what is
around us according to our nature (prarabdhakarma).

May all be consoled, blessed, and in peace.
Love to all

-----Original Message-----
From: f maiello [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: Monday, January 29, 2001 7:33 AM
To: [email protected]
Subject: Re: [advaitin] The earthquake - any explanation for the tragedy
and suffering?

hariH OM! sri sudhir malhotra-

yes, even apparently calloused people will be deeply
moved by tragic events of such proportions.

in many ways, we 'spiritual seers' tend to feel it that
much more. however, we're also quite aware that the Self
remains unscathed and unaffected by such. sri krsna makes
this abundantly clear in bg. however again, this neither
implies that we shouldn't care. what bg is trying to tell
us, is that such shouldn't be taken to heart to the extent
that it derails our equanimity and faith in the wisdom of
the unfolding will of God (isvara).

the fact also emerges that, yes, this is the karma that is
in fact *vital* to the evolution of these souls. i believe
unequivocally that each of us has in our past, undergone
such tragedies, for this very purpose.

99% of the people of the world are unaware of the fact that
virtually *every single day*, over 120,000 people die of
starvation alone...40,000 of which are children under 5!
(statistics according to the Worldwatch Institute.) this
is sobering to say the least. but it also clarifies the
nature of the soul's inscrutable plan [of evolution, and
its often paradoxic dynamics]..

i've researched such matters and recently posted some of my
findings along with a proposed plan to help address these
problems. despite that i believe whatever is unfolding is
necessary, i also believe that part and parcel to isvara's
plan involves certain individuals being responsive to such
problems (viz. one's svadharma embracing seva, as a byproduct
of one's prarabdhakarma). if you're interested, see:

frank maiello


According to the MSN website, a top Indian government official has now told
BBC that as many as 100,000 people may have perished in Gujrat, India.
Unfortunately, the estimates continue to go up on a daily basis. The stories
coming out of Gujrat are truly heart breaking and we pray for the victims
and their families. I am forwarding the message sent earlier to the Advaitin
list by Sadaji, which gives a number of websites of the Hindu, Christian,
Jewish and many other organizations including the American Red Cross that
are accepting contributions for humanitarian assistance for the earthquake
victims in India.

God bless you all

-----Original Message-----
From: K. Sadananda [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: Monday, January 29, 2001 12:16 PM
To: [email protected]

>The Times of India reports that Secretary of State Colin Powell,
>Defense Secretary
>Donald Rumsfeld and National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice met
>in emergency
>session and agreed that India be provided with emergency relief that
>could include
>not only massive infusion of humanitarian assistance, but also other
>aid like US military aircraft support to ferry equipment to the affected
>to help in search and rescue. The full text of the report is reproduced
>Meanwhile, for those who wish to make financial contributions, here are
>of the organizations to which you may send your check:
>1) PRIME MINISTER'S NATIONAL RELIEF FUND: Send checks in dollars or
>rupees. Checks/Money
>Orders should be drawn in favor of "Prime Minister's National Relief Fund"
>sent to any one of the following addresses:
>Prime Minister's National Relief Fund
>Embassy of India
>Attn: Head of Chancery
>2107 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
>Washington, DC 20008
>Wire Transfer Information:
>Prime Minister's National Relief Fund (Riggs Bank, Washington, DC)
>Account Number - 08115910
>Route Number - 054000030
>are tax exempted in the United States (Tax exempt ID: 52-1555563),
>and a receipt
>will be mailed to donors. Make checks payable to IDRF, and mail it
>to the following
>Attention: Nagaraj Patil
>1580 Hollenbeck Ave., Apt #4
>Sunnyvale, CA-94087 USA.
>In the memo, please mention "Gujarat Earthquake Relief."
>For more information contact: Vijay Shrivastava at (770) 394 5031
>2716 Broadway E. SEATTLE, WA 98102
>Phone: 206-323-1228
>Donations to the Vedanta Society are tax deductible in accordance with the
>tax laws.
>4) The BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha will be collecting a fund for the
>relief in India. All contributions are to be directed to:
>BAPS Earthquake Relief Fund
>P. O. Box 891449
>Dallas, TX 75389 - 1449
>The BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha has played a major role during times
>of calamities
>throughout India, for details on the progress of the 2001 earthquake
>relief work
>by BAPS, please feel free to visit :
>Ritesh Desai
>[email protected]
>161 Cherry Street,
>New Canaan, CT 06840
>Contact: Elizabeth Griffin at 1-800-486-4357
>Donors wishing to designate their gifts to India should make checks payable
>the American Red Cross--International Response Fund and earmarked
>for India Earthquake
>Fund in the memo section of the check or an accompanying letter,
>should specify
>India Earthquake Fund.
>Donor can use a secure online credit card donation services or you
>may send your
>donation to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, D.C. 20013.
>The following agencies are accepting contributions for assistance in India
>members of InterAction, a coalition of relief, development and
>refugee assistance
>a) Adventist Development and Relief Agency, 800-424-ADRA,
>b) Asian American Hotel Owners Association, Fred Schwartz, (404) 816 5759
>c) AAPI, Dr. Dayanand Nayak; (914) 732-3322
>d) American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, 711 Third Ave., New
>York 10017.
>(212) 885-0832.
>e) B'nai B'rith International Disaster Relief Fund, 1640 Rhode
>Island Ave. N.W.,
>Washington 20036. (202) 857- 6533.
>f) CARE, 151 Ellis St. N.E., Atlanta 30303. (800) 521-CARE.
>g) Catholic Relief Services, P.O. Box 17090, Baltimore 21203. (800) 736-
>h) Christian Children's Fund, P.O. Box 26484, Richmond 23261.
>i) Christian Reformed World Relief Committee, 800-55-CRWRC,
>j) Church World Service, 475 Riverside Dr., New York 10115. (212)
>k) Concern Worldwide, 212-557-8000,
>l) Direct Relief International, 27 South La Patera Lane, Santa Barbara,
>93117. (805) 964-4767.
>m) Doctors Without Borders, P.O. Box 2247, New York 10116. (888)
>n) Food for the Hungry, 7729 E. Greenway Rd., Scottsdale, Ariz. 85260.
>o) Gujarati Samaj of New York, 173-15 Horace Harding Expressway, Flushing,
>11365; Peter Bheddah, president, (718) 565-7765, Chandrakant Patel,
>(718) 762-9007.
>p) Gujarati Samaj of Washington DC, 9845 Lee Highway, Fairfax, VA 22030
>q) Jackson Heights Merchants Association, (718) 651-6969
>r) Leva Patidar Samaj of USA, 716 Sweetwater Circle, Old Hickory, TN
>37138; (615)
>s) Lutheran World Relief, P.O. Box 17061, Baltimore 21298. (800)
>t) MAP International, 800-225-8550,
>u) Operation USA, 8320 Melrose Ave., Suite 200, Los Angles 90069.
>(800) 678-7255.
>v) Oxfam America, India Earthquake Response, P.O. Box 1745, Boston,
>Mass. 02105
>w) Salvation Army World Service Office, 703-684-5528
>x) The Association for India’s Development (AID), (301) 422-7765
>v) United Methodist Committee on Relief, 475 Riverside Dr., New York
>10115. (800)
>z) US Fund for UNICEF, 333 E. 38th St., New York 10016. (800) FOR-KIDS.
>aa) United Way International, 701 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria, Va. 22314
>bb) World Concern, 800-755-5022,
>cc) World Relief, 800-535-5433,
>dd) World Vision, 888-56-CHILD,
>Lets contribute generously to relieve the pain and suffering in India.
>Ram Narayanan
>On-Line Resource for Indian-Americans
>WASHINGTON: The Bush administration's national security team, in an
>meeting at the highest-level, has unanimously decided to provide
>India with any
>assistance it may require to deal with the earthquake that struck Gujarat
>Friday and has killed 20,000 people.
>Secretary of state Colin Powell, defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld
>and national
>security adviser Condoleezza Rice met in emergency session and
>agreed that India
>be provided with emergency relief that could include not only massive
>of humanitarian assistance, but also other material aid like US
>military aircraft
>support to ferry equipment to the affected areas to help in search and
>administration and diplomatic sources said.
>These sources said the Indian government had acquiesced to American
>helicopters and if necessary C-17 transport aircraft -- like the
>ones that accompanied
>former president Bill Clinton during his trip to South Asian in March -- to
>used in this humanitarian effort and that US ambassador Richard
>Celeste who was
>in constant touch with defence minister George Fernandes had also conveyed
>Washington the expeditious need for concrete-cutting equipment,
>and mobile hospitals.
>Meanwhile, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID),
>the humanitarian
>arm of the American government, will up its assistance to India
>from the original $1 million announced on Saturday to $5 million and has
>provisions to provide even more emergency supplies to India as the
>situation warrants.
>Len Rogers, acting administrator of USAID's Humanitarian Response Bureau
>that "this is clearly a terrible earthquake," and that his office had
>set up a special task force to monitor the situation and work with
>Indian officials
>to determine the most critical needs and would send more aid and
>intensify its relief efforts as the days go by.
>A shipment of USAID supplies that includes plastic sheeting,
>blankets, water-containers,
>purification and distribution kits and generators have already
>arrived in India,
>envisaged to help at least 8,000-10,000 families, and so has a
>seven-member disaster
>response team that will quickly assess
>the situation and send its requirements to Washington for additional
>and more supplies.
>USAID said it was also working with the non-governmental
>organization (NGO) CARE
>and had already begun distributing 100 metric tons of food aid on
>Saturday that
>was already in India when the earthquake struck and was making arrangements
>rush several more hundred metric tons of food aid, which consists of
>rations that could meet half of the energy requirements of about
>4,000 families
>for a period of up to 20 days.
>A spokesman for the Fairfax Country Search and Rescue team, which is
>one of the best in the world and works with sniffer dogs, said they
>stood ready
>to fly out to India as soon as New Delhi took it up on the offer they had
>immediately after the disaster struck.
>Meanwhile, all the area temples were packed to capacity on Sunday
>with devotees
>and worshippers offering special prayers and setting up special
>committees to channel the spontaneous ontributions people were making to
>in the relief efforts.
>Community organizations in the area had also set up special accounts and
>sites to channel the spontaneous outpouring of financial
>contributions and were
>working in concert with the Indian Embassy to expeditiously get
>these funds across
>so that they could be put into maximum use.
>The Washington Post, which continued to report on the earthquake and
>it prominently on page one for the second day running, carried a
>list of relief
>organizations and NGOs that were assisting in the relief efforts with
>on how to contribute.
>Specialty organizations like the American Association of Physicians of
>Origin (AAPI) also was mobilizing its members. Dr. Navin Shah, past
>of AAPI and the chairman of the AAPI-Hinduja Hospitals collaborative
>on developing trauma units, said he had been in contact with Hinduja
>S.P.Hinduja in New Delhi and that the Hinduja Hospital was
>dispatching immediately
>from Mumbai to Bhuj a team of doctors recently trained by
>AAPI-sponsored American
>trauma specialists.
>This US team is being led by Dr. P. Balasubramanium, a trauma surgeon at
>University of California, Los Angeles. Balasubramanium, according to
>Shah, would
>be leaving Monday with a top-flight six-member mobile surgical unit to
>the medical units, both Indian and international, that were already
>on the ground
>in the acutely affected areas where emergency surgery
>was required. (India Abroad News Service)

K. Sadananda
Code 6323
Naval Research Laboratory
Washington D.C. 20375
Voice (202)767-2117



Hi James,

It is a pleasure to have you here with us.
A few weeks ago Jerry mentioned the URL to your homepage and I visited.
It was the first time I saw postures "blended" into Nisarga yoga. Then I
saw your pictures in assanas and realized B.K.S. Iyengar must have been
your teacher (it takes one to know one :)
The two traditions are also my background and it made my heart fly to
see both so beautifully unified (not that for me they were ever
separate). The strange habit of holding Hatha Yoga separately from what
is considered Jnana or Raja (by its proponents) was sth I couldn't really
I thoroughly enjoyed your exposition on Nisarga Yoga. Every word I read
resonated with my experience. Thank you for putting it all in this new,
revealing and surprisingly simple way.
I wonder if you know of any person in Nisarga tradition teaching in



John Metzger sent this:

The Buddhist Saints are the incomparable saints
Mooing continue of lovemilk, mewling
And purling with lovely voices for love,
For perfect compassionate pity
Without making one false move
of action,
Perfectly accommodating commiserations
For all sentient belaboring things.
Passive Sweetsaints
Waiting for yr Holyhood,
Hoping your eventual join
In their bright confraternity.

Perfect Divines. I can name some.
What's in a name. They were saints
Of the Religion of the Awakening
>From the Dream of Existence
And non-existence.
They know that life and death,
The knowing of life, muteness of death,
Are mutual dual twin opposites
Conceptioning on each side of the Truth
Which is the pivot in the Center
And which says: "Neither life
nor death--neither existence
nor non-existence--but the central
lapse and absence of them both
( in Love's Holy Void Abode )"

Jack Kerouac, Mexico City Blues

"The central lapse and absence of"---all opposites. As a former junkie, I
wonder at
Kerouac's practice of collapsing his addiction and realization into "Love's

Overdose, underdose, Dose were the days my friend, we thought they'd never end.


>From the "[email protected]" list:

Subject: Zen and depression

I have been sitting a year.I also suffer from depression from time to
time.However ,with a combination of zazen and St. John's wort I have found
my mind clearer and more focused than I can possibly describe.Last October
I saw depression becoming back stronger. By asking the question ;Who is it
who's depressed?; it largely vanished.Since Dec depression is back in a
stronger,blacker form than before.I struggle to go to work each day and I
can't sit in zazen anymore because of the flashing of thought in my mind.I
am asking if there is anyone who has experienced sitting through
depression.I am ready to sit through it ,and perhaps see past what parts of
it which are just thoughts.Any advise?Thanks,Dave



I have often shared your depression, Dave.

In the recent Chinese movie "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" a warrior talks
about how while meditating, he uncovered a huge and overwhelming feeling of
immense sadness, a feeling that he had never experienced before.

With my mediocre understanding of Zen, I'd suggest that you simply
acknowledge the depressed feelings as they arise during your sitting. By
noting them you may also become aware of peculiar characteristics of the
emotions which may hint at their cause. Insofar as your Zen practise seeps
into your daily life, you could then probe at the reasons behind the
depression. Was there a particular incident or idea that took place during
December which may be the cause?

Perhaps you could broaden your studies of Zen to include more teaching of
just plain old Buddhism. Buddha says that existence is suffering and that
the cause of suffering is desire. Maybe you could think about or observe
which particular unfulfilled desires you have that may be causing your

You also mentioned struggling to go to work each day. Maybe you are
fundamentally unhappy about your vocation. Perhaps you could read about the
Western philosophies of existentialism and absurdism and work on living what
you consider to be a more authentic existence.

I hope that I have not strayed too much from your question. Thankyou for
your time.

Best regards,


>From "[email protected]"

" The Masters say that without human effort nothing
can be achieved. But at the same time they tell us that
what is destined to happen will happen. Is there any
use in prayer or effort? Should we just remain idle?

What is actually meant by those apparently contradictory
statements by the Masters is that it is the feeling "I do"
that is the hindrance. If you are destined to do, you will
not be able to avoid it - somehow you will be forced to
do. It is really not your choice whether to do or not,
because the individual as such does not have the independence
or autonomy to have volition.

What constitutes bondage or hindrance to enlightenment
is not effort but the sense of doership.

This is the point behind the apparent contradiction that
the Masters seem to teach predestination in theory, but
free will in practice. This also explains the affirmation by
Christ that not even a sparrow can fall without the will
of God, and that the very hairs on one's head are numbered.

The Koran affirms that all power, all knowledge, all Grace,
are with God, and that "He leads aright whom He will and
leads astray whom He will." And yet both Christ and the
Koran exhort men to right effort. Perhaps this puzzle would
resolve itself when it is seen in the perspective of the totality
of functioning proceeding to unfold the play of the Grand
Design. Every event - including the happening of what is
known as "enlightenment" through a particular human
apparatus - must fit in with the script of this drama that
life is."

from "The Final Truth", Ramesh Balsekar

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