Highlights Tuesday Nov.2
.. i feel in awe to know so many beautiful souls
this morning, you, oh, Jan, Mike, Jerry, Xan, Harsha,
each a different taste of the energy of the Divine,
and also yet constant like love, which is like
still water ..
Selections from Tao Te Ching (8)
The highest good is like water.
Water gives life to ten thousand things
And does not strive
It flows in places men reject
And so is like the Tao
>From Tao Te Ching (19)Give up sainthood, renounce wisdom
And it will be a hundred times better for everyone.
Here's what it is ..what finally busted loose in me surprised even me.
I've been rehearsing with this choral group the past 6 weeks and last
night I started getting too choked up to sing, then the words just
really got to me and seemed so meaningful. I didn't want to make a scene
and leave and I kept thinking maybe I'd calm down and be able to sing
the next song, but soon as I'd start to sing, the tears would start
again. Its the same music we have been practicing all this time, mostly
based on African spirituals. At first I thought it was just reminding me
of all the years singing in church choir, which of course it was and had
all along, and the music is great but why now so moving? It was and
wasn't the music. Really I was just remembering all these good people I
had known at church, sorta one after another coming up... and then
feeling all this gratitude and love that these of course very ordinary
people were so kind.
Like the guy you could call anytime, because he had made it his business
to learn how to coax the old furnace back to working.. and how he always
asked after my boys and made a point of mentioning that he had also been
thru a divorce and how being a step parent was not easy, but his boys
all turned out ok in the end, tho they had their bad days too, so not to
worry about it.. and then he'd talk about his vegetable garden.. and I
still can't even remember what his name was, just that he's dead now and
I miss him.
And all those little old ladies who week after week sign up for nursery
care because they don't mind missing church.. and always stick around to
clean up the kitchen after the potlucks.. and take food over whenever
anyone has a baby or someone dies, whether they know them well or not..
nameless to me people were coming to mind along with the ones important
to me and close to me.
And I remembered how when the larger church hierarchy was holding
debates about what the church's "stance" should be towards homosexuals,
we just quietly voted in a lesbian woman for deacon. And the best part
was it had nothing to do with any stance, it was more because she was
already collecting furniture and stuff to give out to people whose
houses burned down and that's what deacons do is look after other's
needs, so why not make it official.
Back when my first husband simply packed up and went to California, the
minister listened to all my problems week after week, cause I certainly
could not afford "real counseling." No matter how depressed or angry I
got then, he would say, "Well, isn't it okay to feel like that? If I was
in your shoes, I'd be upset, too. This is not easy." And yet I'd feel
better just being listened to and go back to deal with another week. He
gave me what may be the best compliment I ever got in my life one day
when he said, "What impresses me most about you is the wide assortment
of people you know from all walks of life." When I stopped to think of
all those people and how everywhere I went in town I'd see someone I
knew, I felt rich in friends and the money problems I had then seemed a
lot less important.
Well, I could on and on and I really don't care how corny this all must
sound, because it was my mistake to think that it mattered that you
can't talk to these people about chakras or kundalini or Buddhism or
esoteric anything. So it actually does not matter to me if anyone thinks
Christianity is dualistic or even if it basically really is,
intellectually speaking. The entire issue of beliefs just went poof
I know these people got the essence of Jesus message was about love and
caring for others. Anyone's ordinary kindness matters just as much as
the Mother Teresa type. And I realize how all these people are actually
so much better than even they know themselves.
And I remembered that is why I fell in love with Jesus in the first
place back when I was 10 years old and first heard about him... God is
love, love one another. Even when I later went thru my own atheism, I
could not bear to hear Jesus himself disparaged. Since then I've been
thru all the usual questioning of everything and the ridiculous theology
and thought I was just going to church for the kids sake or because I
just like to sing the music, and that I needed to work out my own
beliefs anyway and find people who thought like me. No matter what or
how anything really may be, I still love Jesus.
When I finally got out of there, I let it out and cried all the way
home. Here I've stayed away from church the past two years for many
different reasons, but last night I knew I am just so homesick I want to
...Pascal said that the Heart has its reasons, that reason cannot know.
Home is where the Heart is. Heart leads us Home and Heart Is the Home.
Christianity is also a place for karma yoga - doing good works.
Christian mysticism - the understanding and practice of communion
with God - is having a rebirth in some western groups. For a
long time meditation was taboo, but that seems to be fading away.
...For some Christians the teaching of 'surrender to the will
of God', and the experience of being 'born again in the
spirit' are real instances and growth in awakening. Now
and then while channel-surfing I run across some preachin'
and pause a minute. It's easy to see who is coming from
ideas and beliefs and who is speaking from direct experience
of .... you name it.
...Jesus was not a Christian. This is the duality created by man. We
judge Buddha, Jesus, Rama, Krisna... by the religions that are
'executed' in their name.
What if these 'men' just woke up one day to a deeper truth and
'meaning'? The greatest conspiracy that I can imagine is the conspiracy
that 'isolates' the truth! You do not know Jesus beyond the religion
(created by men) and the deeds that have been done in the name of this
Jesus taught the dharma... do unto others... what you do to the least of
these... judge not lest you be judged...
Maybe the best Christianity is not nondual but recognizes that God is
the only "doer." Bernadette Roberts is one recent Westerner to have
experienced this transformation.
Joel Goldsmith also has a marvelous approach in his THE MYSTICAL I,
where he is very clear about God being the only cause, and everything
else, an effect.
But "best Christianity"? Don't forget the integration of the feeling
and body level. After reading Bernadette Roberts' books (which deal
with mental phenomena, ontology, philosophy, contemplation, and seem
somewhat gloomy), I'd take a good, ol' fashioned down-home Southern
gospel sing-in any day, with holy dancing and speaking in tongues! Or
the quiet, reverent chanting and observance in a dark, drafty medieval
Gothic cathedral. Also gloomy, but beautiful and picturesque.
I've dealt with a lot of types of Christianity and the highest ones
focus on the overwhelming power of Grace, or God's (i.e. What Is's) Will
and surrender thereto.
THE OLDE FART:
I don't(agree). And, I'll tell you why.
Because in this view, G-d must always be the Other.
...It's you, always you- there is no other! By making Grace a thing to
be dependent upon, It sounds like the beginning of an unhealthy
relationship. No matter how great one thinks this new partner is.
Yes, it's me - there is no other. It is me pretending to be a separate
mind/body. It's me coming to my rescue as Grace. It's me that is a
relationship of two and it's me that is only and always One, expressing
itself in all these ways.
It's me pretending to be you and making these points so I can express a
bit of this profound on-going dance of Grace all around and within me
which is my life on Earth.
THE OLDE FART:
G-d is both Light and Darkness.
Indeed. Creation and destruction. Never one without the other.
Creation is the beginning of entropy, because something pristine and
whole has separated. God is never more God than when there is no God.
...It doesn't take much, in fact the less the better. An unplanned
stroll out the backdoor into the warm fall yard. Stopping to notice one
detail or another, though glanced at in a hurry many thousand times, a
single effort to make this time something new. In that second of quiet
there comes a flicker of how tiny my uneventful life is hidden in among
all the tremendous traffic of those connecting streets and avenues that
blanket near the entire country. This one roof covering me is hardly
worth a passing glance to a stranger, yet covers my life and therefore
ever important in the imaginary enormity of my personal universe.
Living here today I am simply feeling a contentment with the
contrivances of my ceaseless cares and worries. Is there really no
method to remove this lifetime habit of fretting and fussing over one
calamity or another ever produced anew by ambitious meddling? Even that
idea has become fretful. But enough of such daily expenditures of time.
One second, friends, of peace. That is all I am hoping for this minute.
And I wish the same for you.
"Things are not as they seem -
and nor are they otherwise."
"Seeming things being are not -
as otherwise being they could not."