Jerry Katz
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Highlights #959

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01/27/02 Monday


James Traverse

NonDuality - OneDuality

Hi Jerry,

Yes. It is 'Oneness' as you say. And it can be
either a verb
or a noun.

Another way to 'speak' of this distinction is as the
difference between 'metaphor' and 'isophor'.

Kathleen Forsythe uses the term isophors for isomorphisms
experienced in the use of language. Isophors are distinct from
metaphors in that they are experienced directly. With the isophor
there is no separation between thought and action, between feeling and
experience. The experience itself is evoked through the relation. She
suggests that the *experience* (my emphasis - J)) of one thing in
terms of another, the isophor, is the means by which we map domain to
domain and that our consciousness of this meta-action, when we observe
ourselves experiencing this, lies at the heart of cognition. She has
postulated the development of an epistemology of newness in which
learning is the perception of newness and cognition depends on a
disposition for wonder leading to this domain of conception-perception

She argues that the notion of metaphor is commonly understood
to mean the *description* (my emphasis - J) of one thing in terms of
another. This notion presupposes an objective reality. This
objectivity may be questioned and if, as suggested by Maturana,
(objectivity) is placed in parentheses, "we can begin to appreciate
clearly the role we play in the construction of our own perception of
reality. for this reason, the notion of the experience of one thing in
terms of another, the isophor, suggests that it is this dynamic
constructing ability that involves conception and perception --
unfolding and enfolding, that this gives rise to the coordination of
actions in recursion which we know as language."


I feel that neither of these are complete by themselves simply
because the basis for each is language. So therefore I feel that both
are required to state the whole. One aspect states Oneness directly
and the other states it indirectly by saying everything that it isn't.

The only other way to 'speak' of this is Silence and declare
that Silence has to be 'lived'.

In other words there has to be Realization of silence as in 'to
make real'. Realization is before and beyond the word 'realization.


At the bus stop

Sitting by my self at the bus stop here while back I had a wonderful experience...I was just sitting there
enjoying the sun on my face when all of a sudden a young girl sat down right against me!

Thigh to thigh, butt cheek to butt cheek she squirmed to get as close as she could.

Startled for moment I glanced at her and knew a game of truth or dare was being played (I could hear
two or three kids laughing at her as she did the dare). To her surprise and theirs I didn't freak out but
instead began to enjoy that hard young body all up against me. Woohee I thought how lucky can an old
bedazzled goof ball like me get. Young flesh! She gave it up after a few moments and I smiled in thanks to
her and those kids and to Life itself for showing me again it's sweeter, more comical side.

Of course the little brat might have scared some poor old guy into eternity and then have to live with that
conditioning for a long time. I should have thought to scold them...I'm sure they would have listened

Love to all of us,


Are you in the state of nonduality?

"onlyoneperspective" wrote:
> Now understand reality -
> A Vegetable can be in the state of NonDuality.
> A Rock can be in the state of NonDuality.
> A Baby can be in the state of NonDuality.
> A person Sleeping can be in the state of NonDuality.
> But You, a conscious ego, cannot be in the state of NonDuality.
> Yes You may believe You are one with that Universal Awareness.
> Yes You may believe You are not identifying with your mind/body.
> Yes You may believe You are not attached to any concept of Self.
> Still there You are, working to feed Your own body/mind, everyday.
> Thinking that You are Not Thinking. Believing You have No Beliefs.

As often happens, this is where my mind was too. "Believing You have
No Beliefs." Yes. Very uncomfortable, reading a couple of replies to
Paul (hello, Paul) containing statements like "I have no beliefs". If
untrue, this is the kind of idealism/denial that is dangerous in a
way similar to the way that fundamentalism itself is dangerous.

Also, there are no fundamentalISTS, unless we identify them in that
fixed way. That kind of "us and them" mentality is a seed of war.

> If you enjoy believing that You are in the state of NonDuality,
> "An it harm none needlessly, do as you will." So, expound forever.
> (PS - this is all said with a smile, so please take it in with one.)
> And just to make this NDS post Kosher, I will close it like this,
> "Me? I'm sitting on my couch, lazily eating a box of donuts." :-)

I'm eating "Whoppers", but also remembering the delicious, plentiful
$5 vegetarian lunches (cheap) I used to get sometimes from a cart a
block from the world trade center where I worked. One day i finally
noticed a table located several paces to the right with some
literature on it, unmanned and totally ignored. yeah, it was the hare
krishnas, but there was not a hare krishna to be found anywhere by.


Paul & the questions

Paul & Friends,

Paul asks: How did you (or I) ever fall into believing in the
world, if you are Bhagavan? How is the infinite covered by ignorance,
if even only in appearance? How do myriad bewildered living enties
live and die in complete illusion, if everyone is the nondual Self?

Dear Paul,

Regardless of what ever else goes down, don't let anyone tell you
that you don't have a firm understanding of the essential questions.

yours in the bonds,


hi james,

the quotes were a little beyond me, considering I can barely understand
whether or not i won a donut on 'roll up the rim to win'. (local contest
where you roll up the rim of paper coffee cup to see if you won a prize.)

let's see if i understand. Let's just focus on Oneness. A metaphor for the
oneness of all things is, say, an egg? Yes? It seems to me the whole egg
represents, or is a metaphor, for oneness.

Now an isophor for the oneness of all things is some kind of an experience.
It's not something that can be pictured or intellectually understood. In
fact, as an experience it might not be understood at all. But it is
experienced. A satori experience could be an isophor for the oneness of
reality. Sexual intercourse, perhaps, if anyone is actually having it or can
remember what it's like, might be an isophor for reality's oneness. Hopefully
I'm still on track.

Let's look at nonduality. A metaphor could be a zero. An isophor could be ...
deep sleep? Can anyone come up with other isophors for nonduality?

Not sure where I'm going with this, other than to clarify what an isophor is
for the world of nonduality.

Both metaphors and isophors are experiences. However, as you say, both are
required to understand oneness and nonduality.

This understanding, I believe you're saying, is still not the same as
realization, which is founded in the being or the living of Silence.

Can you clarify further?



Hi James,

I read the page you mentioned. Nice new term. For linguistics, it's a useful concept. But for nonduality, I
don't find isophor a useful conceptual tool. Granted, the teaching and understanding of nonduality often
starts off as an intellectual affair. And even at this intro level, I find it hard to see how isophor is a useful
concept. Why not? Because it seems that the notion of isophor reinforces the notion of an independent
world outside of observation, outside of concepts - a world that concepts point to. You mention the thing
itself. In the usual approaches to nonduality, the notion of an external independent world is often the first
concept to be seen through. But isophor is a great word!



Hello Greg,

Thanks for pointing out the notion of how isophor reinforces the
notion of an independent world outside of observation.

This is precisely why isophor has to be complimented by metaphor.

And, this is precisely what I mean by the dualistic nature of
language and why I introduced the term OneDuality to compliment

I also feel that isophor is a great term and my point is not
whether or not OneDuality is an isophor, (although I am interpreting
Forsythe's definition to mean that it is - it is a new term and like
other aspects of language, it may well change as it evolves).

My point is that the term NonDuality by itself is not complete.
And I have proposed OneDuality to compliment it.

I also feel that the term OneDuality by itself is not complete.

This is why OneDuality and NonDuality are mutually dependent.

And why I said in an earlier post:

Thus, NonDuality and OneDuality are different ways to express the same
thing. By themselves each is incomplete, unreal. United in their
quiddity, they represent Reality-Unreality, the Whole, which is
greater than the sum of the individual parts.


> But sure, now that you mention it, he's gone on to a better place, and he
> was a good good man, the logic implies he is much happier now most likely.
> Just, why does it hurt so much to let it go?
> my best,
> valerie

Hi valerie,

there is a wonderful book, and i usually hesitate to "recommend"
books, but you can of course take it or leave it as you see fit. it's
written by melody beattie who previously wrote probably the best of
the "codependency" books, but this one is not a self-help book in
that sense--it is in its own class. it is her experience of losing
her 12 yr. old son in a skiing accident and her journey into and back
from the blackness of grief. very simply told. i used to read it in
the bathtub and weep, after the loss of a relationship that felt like
a death, not to trivialize the real thing, but there is a grieving
process there too. it is called The Lessons of Love.



Hi Sarlo and Eric,

Like Eric, my earliest encounter with Buddhism was through Zen sources.
So the contrast of the Tibetan version was rather bewildering at first.
However, before we dismiss the trappings as mere superstitions or
corruptions, let's consider this from a Joseph Campbell sort of
perspective. Things like the dances acting out stories with devils and
demons in elaborate masks is almost universal within mostly illiterate
cultures, where rituals tell what books do in ours. But also the
Tibetan Book of the Dead was recognizing visions as mental projections
way before the West had Freud to tell us such things, they were not so
unsophisticated. Similarly, the "truth" of the Hindu gods is a
psychological truth in the way they both exemplify and meet
the human need for dealing with various emotional and social issues.

We too have these same needs, and we ignore them at our own peril.
Whether in the name of sophistication or nonduality, when we forget we
are also flesh and blood and social animals we are moving towards
denial. Out of these very same needs, the human imagination has created
language, science, music, religions, the whole shebang. The need for
sharing stories and information, wanting to hear news, and even be
entertained is part of why we are on this list together. Sorting
all this out from what you call the "socially reinforced and
conditioned mind" is an impossible task. To somehow neither defend or
deny its importance, but simply to look at all this human creativity as
part of what_is. It may not be a "pure nondual understanding". But hey,
what's a religion without donuts?



i'm writing an article for harsha's magazine on donut spirituality. he
doesn't know it yet. and it might get rejected with one of those polite
rejection letters. if so, i'll send it elsewhere. Maybe to that great
spiritual magazine: What Is Donuts?. Have you noticed a lot of people into
donut spirituality have that glazed look? I wonder why that is.



Hi Gang,
About two months ago, I was sent an advanced copy of a great new book
called "Spiritual Enlightenment: The Damnedest Thing" by someone called Jed
McKenna. It's coming out this April by Wise Fool Press and you can check
it out at:
Here's my review: "Jed McKenna's irreverent brand of home-grown
enlightenment points to the bottom-line Truth for those who have the inner
courage to look. This book is a humorous, readable and down-to-earth
invitation to step off the spiritual treadmill and to simply BE who you
already are. I thoroughly enjoyed reading every page. Highly recommended."
Enjoy !!
With Blessings,
Chuck Hillig

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