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#1544 - Thursday, September 4, 2003

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  • Jerry Katz
    Detail from The Whirling Dervishes by Jean-Leon Gerome, French. Oil, 1899. (Contributed by Ben Hassine NDS) ... Issue #1544 - Thursday, September 4, 2003 -
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 5, 2003
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      Detail from 'The Whirling Dervishes' by Jean-Leon Gerome, French. Oil, 1899. (Contributed by Ben Hassine NDS)

      Issue #1544 - Thursday, September 4, 2003 - Editor: Jerry

      Michael Read
      Response to a letter from Russel.
      Russel's words are in quotes and italics.
      Michael's words are in bold.
      dear russell,
      as editor emeritus of the ndshighlights list i find your
      letter of some interest. of course you're puzzled and feel
      like something is missing. that's the way seekers usually
      feel. It is an honest feeling. you know what I'm talking
      about here. that tiny nagging suggestion that what you feel
      you so very need is just there, slightly out of reach.
      "I'm puzzled by something in all the stuff on enlightenment
      that I have looked at on the Internet. I know this is not a
      discussion group but despite this I submit the following."
      as someone who has been known to refer to his own self as the
      only truly enlighted being in the entire universe i don't
      mind exercising a little hubris and allow a response to flow
      outward from the ever expanding now of just being here. just
      a little trick i learned, sort of by accident. ha!
      "Something's missing. Most if not all the material I see is
      about how to gain enlighenment."
      all you really need to understand is the zen ox-herding
      story. don't read it as if it were somebody else's story.
      read it as if it were your own.
      "(And I know this is badly worded - it isn't something you
      gain - more something false you lose.)"
      nothing is gained or lost.
      "Personally I feel the attraction. I'm pulled to this as
      everything I read about it makes so much sense to me. But my
      wife doesn't understand (sounds like I'm talking to my
      mistress!). She wants to know how it will affect my life in
      the world practically and also specifically our relationship,
      as she isn't following this path. Good question I thought.
      And one I can't answer myself. I can make guesses but the
      more I thought about this the less satisfactory I found my
      understanding. So I have compiled a few points and questions
      below and would appreciate if there is anyone reading this
      who can throw some light in this. And maybe some more
      well, that all depends on what kind of jerk you become as you
      get caught-up in "your" path. really serious spiritual
      seekers can go through some fantastically phsycotic episodes.
      "Assume in the discussion below I am newly enlightened."
      as a dear friend of mine has been known to say - and i
      paraphrase - 'enlightenment is that moment that you realize,
      the only thing that has ever made you sad and miserable is
      you. '
      "What was I thinking!"
      "1. If I lose my sense of individuality who am I talking about
      when I say "I"? "I love you". "I agree to do ....". "This is
      my bank account and you've overcharged me". Am I playing a
      game here? Do I stop using the word "I" except to mean my
      well, you won't be or become any better than the folk around
      you. that's fer sure! listen, there is no need to become a
      "creeping jesus" - so to speak. the game of life and bank
      balances does continue. unless you decide to join a hermatige
      or a monastary and take vows folk will still say "hey you!"
      and you'll be the one who turns around.
      "2. If I don't have any personal wants or needs anymore, what
      gets me out of bed and decides what I shall do today / at any
      the simple fact that there ain't no free lunch ought to do
      "3. Further to 2. if, say, I make an arrangement with a friend
      to go bowling. Come the time to go, why should I go? Maybe
      I'll go - or not. I don't need to go to prove my ability or
      man(/woman)hood or anything else. I might be content just
      sitting at home enjoying the succession of moments. Do I go
      to avoid annoying my friend or to avoid getting a reputation
      for unreliability (which I wouldn't care about). If I get a
      reputation for unreliability will it start to alienate me
      from some of my current friends? Perhaps I never go bowling
      again. Or play basketball / golf /tennis / etc."
      heck, do whatever. sit around in a state of catatonic bliss
      alla time. who cares? <grin> i've been know to go bowling,
      "4. Maybe I need to change or abandon my job. Ok this seems to
      be obvious as my whole outlook will change."
      mere statistics predict that people will change jobs a
      certain number of times during their lifes. plus or minus 5%
      "5. But what do I do with my life? Do I naturally become a
      teacher/guru? I would have thought that this isn't the only
      calling - presumably I can other things which I would "want"
      to do. (But I don't have any wants!). I'm not looking for a
      job to "do good" as I don't have any sense of good and bad -
      it's just all as it is."
      so what's wrong with being a good guy - hey? and you gonna
      wanta eat - ain't ya? and see 3
      "6. If I look at love as an impersonal love what does this
      mean for my relationship with my wife? Further if I wasn't
      with a partner when becoming enlightened, how would one come
      to be with me? By random chance? If there's no personal love
      could I have a meaningful relationship with just anyone who
      walks into the room or is there something which would make a
      particular person special to me?"
      if you think love is impersonal, you no doubt walk around
      with your hoof in your mouth a lot - i would think.
      do you think that this thing called enlightenment is
      something impersonal? the universe has jacked you around into
      thinking that there is something you so very much need. and
      there you are - feeling hung out to dry. well - shit! and the
      guru's and monks and mystics of all stripes keep telling you
      that you are already IT! what a riot and a calamity, hey?
      <wicked silly grin> what a disaster! ha ha and HA!
      "7. On a more mundane level, can I watch a movie (other than
      the Matrix) or TV entertainment? Presumably it wouldn't be
      possible to mentally put oneself in the position of the
      film's hero as most people apparently do when they watch. Can
      I suspend my disbelief to be entertained? As I don't need
      entertainment maybe I never watch films or TV again."
      no, you must watch nothing but the matrix, matrix animations,
      and all the old sci-fi on tv. sorry, just another of the
      secret silly rules of all us truly enlightened ones.
      "8. Similarly do I watch the news on TV or read the newspaper?
      Isn't 99% of the news irrelevant in reality? It is what is,
      and most is just another form of entertainment."
      go at least a month without tv or the papers. don't discuss
      tv. or the news either for that matter. or even think about
      what may be on tv. then ask this question again.
      and if you want to be entertained - play the mandolin
      "9. I presumably don't drink alcohol. No going to the bar with
      mates then. Also no drugs. (This bit was easy)."
      too bad, jerry was going to buy us all a round of Gran'
      Marinier and corona corona's to puff on. would you prefer
      juice? ok!
      "10. How do I choose what to eat?"
      your body knows what it needs. basically anything that you
      aren't allergic to is ok. there really isn't a special heaven
      for vegetarians. however, vegetables are really good for
      physical health and well being. nothing wrong with feeling
      right. but one need not become too sensitive to taking life
      as food or, you'll start to hear the low slow screaming of
      the carrots as they boil....
      "11. Do I bother to do anything which is "good for me" like
      eating vegetables or taking exercise? I'm not looking for any
      results - I'm perfect as I am. Do I not comb my hair or
      appear well dressed as I don't need to make an impression on
      no, do everything that is bad for you - doh!
      "12. Do I change/ditch my car? Am I concerned what it is doing
      to the earth?"
      you decide - that's all
      "13. Do I try to persuade my wife / family to change something
      they are doing? Like not being aware. Or watching soap operas
      while I am in the room
      what makes you so special that everybody gotta do what you
      say? hmm... no sirree. basically, when one starts to feel
      like they want to get their family to follow the so called
      'path' and to wake up, they themselves are fearing to change
      and to follow the changes that do come.
      "14. Do I go to my friends funeral? Or do I tell people
      his/her life is in the past and now irrelevant."
      no life is irrelevant. not yours. not your friend's. not
      mine. not even a bug's. that's part of the beauty of it all.
      life is what fills the void, you see? <smile>
      "Do you see the problems? Has anyone written about how their
      practical life in the world changed as a result of
      well, i did write a lot of bad poetry off and on for a few
      years. as to how any given person's life will go - milage
      varies. there really is peace that passes all understanding i
      will say that with no uncertainty. no matter how shitty
      things may and do get...the peace is there and i still laugh
      when i'm happy and cry when i am sad and peace is there what
      a nice deal...

      The Delusion of Appearances

      From 'The Diamond Sutra' (The Buddha)

      Subhuti, someone might fill innumerable worlds with the seven
      treasures and give all away in gifts of alms, but if any good man
      or any good woman awakens the thought of Enlightenment and
      takes even only four lines from this Discourse, reciting, using,
      receiving, retaining and spreading them abroad and explaining them
      for the benefit of others, it will be far more meritorious. Now in
      what manner may he explain them to others? By detachment
      from appearances-abiding in Real Truth. -So I tell you-

      Thus shall you think of all this fleeting world:
      A star at dawn, a bubble in a stream;
      A flash of lightening in a summer cloud,
      A flickering lamp, a phantom, and a dream.

      Ekaku Eric
      " Ma principale profession en cette vie, estoit de la vivre
      mollement, et plustost l√Ęchement qu'affaireusement. "

      "my main occupation in this life, is to live it nonchalantly, and
      rather loosely than busily"

      (Essais de Montaigne, T. III, p. 294.)

      Jan Barendrecht
      "How are you doing?"
      "Very well, regularly, i am one with the universe"
      "What when you're not?"
      "Then i am one with my other thoughts"
      The voice spoke "i am that".
      "How can i be that when i hear this?"
      Profusely perspiring, going uphill:
      "I can't keep up with that any longer!"
      "Why then do you carry along an empty, heavy bottle on your back?"
      "The bottle contains dear memories of experiences in the void"
      The i from the nth shell asked "who am i?"
      "Silly question" the i from the (n-1)th shell responded.
      The (n-2)th i exclaimed "who is asking who am i !?"
      The (n-3)th i, baffled, remained silent...
      "Error! You just have been disconnected!"
      the (n-4)th i reported, "contact god or your service provider".
      Eric Paroissien
      5 absolutely identical shells (do you know how often this happens)
      talk to each other:
      - look there your odd shape, how ridiculous!
      - come on, if i was as hard as you i would mary a roc!
      - hey guys relax, you're using the whole water getting excited like
      - look who's talking, with the silly orange tongue dangling out!
      - <with a mysterious grin> i guess i am the only one containing a
      - you don't know, it is impossible to know what's inside shells!
      - cool off please, it's getting hot in here!

      [meanwhile the heat is raising in the sauce for a delicious dish
      of "coquilles st jacques" (scallops in shells)... bon appetit!]

      Walt Whitman. As if having a conversation
       with his soul, he recalls,

      I mind how once we lay, such a
      transparent summer morning,

      Swiftly arose and spread around me
      the peace and knowledge that pass all
       the argument of the earth.

      Ben Hassine
      Rimsky Korsakov - Cherubic Hymn
      You can find this (and other Russian music streams on the same site) here:
      Good night seekers and finders,
      Jan B.
      has Russian music too


      Discovering Nisargadatta Maharaj, by Dr. Lakshyan Schanzer. My name is Lakshyan Schanzer. I have been practicing and teaching yoga and meditation since 1971. I am also a psychologist and practice a meditative approach to psychotherapy. This is my first writing about my experiences with Nisargadatta Maharaj. -more- click on 'Discovering Nisargadatta Maharaj'

      Yes, yes, yes!  I so agree with you.  My favourite is also the
      Yogi Bhajan tea.  It tastes so wonderful, and as it's brewing, it smells
      heavenly, doesn't it?  I put milk in mine, do you?  It is the only herbal
      tea that I do put milk in, though.  I can smell its sweet aroma as I type
      these words.  So, I guess I will sign off for the night and go have a cup of
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