Highlights from Wednesday, November 24
- Highlights from Wednesday's postings......November 24, 1999
"Three Pillars of Zen" is a wonder book for directing the
attention away from the guest and back to the host. 80% of
it is not the authors words but a collection of letters from
many zen masters, excerpts from renown buddhist doctrines
and sutras and the private instructions to ten westerners
studying zen in a japanese monastery with japanese Roshis
(not the zen centre Phillip Kapleau set up). So please don't
be put off it is an excellent book.
Notions, paths and ideals are violent in their source - the individualized
The drawing of boundaries - 'you are not me' - is combative.
Ahimsa exists purely only in the wholeness of Being - like love.
But our aspirations are forgivable.
The Fullest Realization Of Love Is A Wound That Never Heals - was a
sentence that jumped out at me from Adi Da's website.
Heart on the sleeve - bound to be hurt - but have courage and continue
That quote reminds of Sufism and Bhakti; refusal to give up the love of
God. For Ramakrishna, it was the goddess Kali, preventing nirvikalpa
samadhi, the monk Tota Puri initiated him in nondualism. Sufis can undergo
a period of longing, alternated with a period of ecstasy. When love is
experienced in subject - object form, one will be sad or angry when the
object of love is removed and happy when the object returns. When love is
experienced only in subject form, it is like the sun when the clouds are
gone - one is ever happy and doesn't want this to change. But when one
completely dissolves in love, subject, object, this no longer applies. What
is there to distinguish when there is only love? What remains to gain or to
Jan Barendrecht :
With passionless is meant: no consciousness of body. It means no more sense
of touch, no more sense of gravity and no more pain, irrespective of what
happens to the body. Transformations always concern the mortal frame
(including mind), these transformations occur naturally and can be observed
well by those, familiar with them. One of those "knowers" was Heinrich
Zimmer who wrote a book about Ramana Maharshi, containing his biography and
he could see that from a certain moment Ramana expressed himself
predominantly in a rational way. It can be argued that no more
consciousness of body is rather dangerous to it and it is more than likely
this only happens shortly before mahasamadhi. So there is nothing to worry
about bliss; it will only increase, like the analogy that a certain flame
heating a big piece of iron to a red glow, will heat a smaller piece of
iron to a white glow which is more intense. Regarding emotions, from a
certain point they will no longer be burdened by former experiences, but
only by what is observed *now*; they will be genuine, although things like
anger can disappear altogether. So there is no reason to worry; quite the
I was wondering in conjunction with this. Let us just take
it as a given that the emotional center has no negative
part. Otherwise we would never be able to be free of
negative emotion because it would be part of the
machinery. And let us say that what appears as a negative
emotion is the negative half of the instinctual center energy
in the emotional center. So far so good? :-) Just theory but
I think it is correct.
Perhaps it is simpler to see it in terms of loss and gain, pleasure and
pain. If loss is experienced, to so called negative feelings (anger, grief,
etc.) will follow and when a gain is experienced, it is rejoiced. When it
has become clear that loss and gain appear in the mind only, at first the
sharp edges will start wearing off. When the situation arises that the mode
of thinking in terms of loss, gain, pleasure and pain is wearing off
itself, the negative feelings can no longer arise, simply because there is
no more subject to which they apply. The feelings that remain are the
expressions of compassion (love in action) and never relate to a personal
Anyway what I have noticed is that if I am very aware of
my sensate body for instance when I am sitting in the
morning and in touch with the neural network and say
something happens like the kids get into a fight I first
notice it as a totally instinctual thing almost like a reflex
and then if I am not careful I "get mad" and finally I begin
to judge and make mental statements like this isn't right
and so forth. If I can stay in my body the instinctual
reaction can just dissipate like a drop of food
coloring in water.
I would seem what you are talking about is getting
behind all three centers at once. Make sense?
Yes Marcia, observation, a keen insight, the sense that there is something
"fishy" about negative feelings, it is possible to "cut through the crap"
easily. If only "modern man" could acknowledge the fact that for a so
called "primitive" there was no "cutting the crap" at all, it would be much
easier still. Everything has to arise in the mind first and after that,
reaction cannot be averted. Be aware of arising, know that there must have
been a "first time" to react the way one has been accustomed to.
This may be really obvious but <s> it seems that it is
the emotional center that takes things "personally".
I am thinking that it is not so much that there is no
body awareness (passionless) but rather that "my"
body awareness gets extended farther and farther
out so that my neural network becomes larger and
larger. I can be electrically aware of or in tune with
......that is as far as I can go with that sentence. :-)
It is the "my" part that goes not the body part. Does
that make sense? And thusly the emotions are there
all right but not so personal.
It is most convincing to discover oneself that there isn't an
emotional center, only identifications. The major part of
these refers to "I". There is a lot of difference between the
statements "I am having a toothache" or "there is a
toothache". Without identification with body, the first
statement is just for the sake of argument and without "I"
there is pain but it can't be called suffering, so one doesn't
get in a bad mood because of it. This could be what you mean.
One aspect of one's real nature is a serene bliss which isn't
easily overshadowed by any feeling. As long as this bliss
hasn't become like the ever shining sun, there will be the
duality of opposite feelings. Unconditional bliss just means
this: no matter what happens, it can't be switched off.
Maharaj: In your Beingness, millions of sins are commited and now you want to elude responsiblity by clinging to, and hiding within, an individuality. All these happenings are your creations only.
Visitor: But you are also all that, in your Beingness
Maharaj: Totally everything is in my Beingness, including yourself. But no authority whatsoever is given either to me or to you to set things right.
I really liked this from Nectar of the Lord's Feet
Offered from Jerry:
The Pathway of Nonduality
Karma or the Law of Cause and Effect
Q. People speak of karma, sin, law of retaliation,
reparation, etc. What do these words mean?
A. We have to distinguish what is a philosophical vision of
Reality from a sentimental-anthropomophous or
The theistic, anthropomorphous outlook brings God or Being
down to the 'human dimension', endowing it with qualities of
love-hate or of attraction-repulsion. God is infinite
goodness but He is also the punisher of those who go against
His will. Down through the ages many religions have drawn
inspiration from this dual God, even if they spoke of 'One
The relationship of man-God based upon these assumptions
leads to a stressing of the moral aspect because, depending
on his conduct, man may conform to or trespass the will of
God. Sin is a psychological attitude which infringes or
violates the law of God. Since moral behavior implies a set
of norms to conform to, the anthropomorphous theistic
religion has a code, considered to be divine, which each
believer must obey.
Disobedience is followed by sin; those who do not obey or
conform to the law, sin. Hence the 'reparation' which is
necessary in order to be permitted back into the 'grace' of
the offended God. As religious theism attributes to God
alone the principle of will, man is left with just the
choice to obey or disobey; yet, although he may obey, the
verdict of absolution remains exclusively in the hands of
God. God is the arbiter of the entire destiny of mankind,
introducing Himself into human affairs in time and space. He
may concede or refuse his forgiveness, according to His
The nemesis of the Sacred Mysteries is the equivalent of the
Vedic karma. The word karma means ritual action, but also
law of cause and effect. What is this law?
On the psycho-spiritual level, just as on the physical
level, every effect is the materialization of a cause. We
might say that the law of karma is similar to that of cause
and effect of science.
Man has the possibility to move in several directions,
producing effects which may or may not be in harmony with
himself and with others. Nemesis consists in re-establishing
Order and equilibrium where unbalance and disorder have
occurred. By upsetting the balance of creating disharmony in
the universal Order the 'mystes' receives a repercussion. It
is the law of nemesis that comes in and operates so that the
Order is re-established.
If we put a finger into the fire (cause) the effect will be
a burn. However, this does not imply that a vindictive or
emotional God has punished us and applied the law of
retaliation. Our ignorance (avidya) of a law has led us into
A powerful energy of hatred or love attracts towards itself
energy of the same nature and strength. The effect is
proportionate to the cause. There is nothing extraordinary
in the fact that a discharge, let us say, of have attracts
hate. It is the law of magnetic sympathy in action.
When Jesus said to love those who hate us, he did not wish
to announce a principle of social and sentimental morality.
Rather, he wished to point out a universal law. If hate
attracts hate, then in order to neutralize a force of a
certain nature and intensity it is necessary to use another
of equal and opposite strength. The law of the Initiate is:
love your enemy.
(to be continued)
Offered from Tim G:
Subject: Astavakra Samhita - 5
Translation by Thomas Byrom
Chapter 5 - Dissolving
1 You are pure.
Nothing touches you.
What is there to renounce?
Let it all go,
The body and the mind.
Let yourself dissolve.
2 Like bubbles in the sea,
All the worlds arise in you.
Know you are the Self.
Know you are one.
Let yourself dissolve.
3 You see the world.
But like the snake in the rope,
It is not really there.
You are pure.
Let yourself dissolve.
4 You are one and the same
In joy and sorrow,
Hope and despair,
Life and death.
You are already fulfilled.
Let yourself dissolve.
The air is stagnant - I'm ready for a walk by the beach where the waves
can instruct me.
I was just down there earlier, all those darn waves do is talk.
Talk, talk, talk, talk, talk! They never shut up!! :-)
Subject: My favorite (my only) Tarot
Try a single card
The Screening Process
A man and his dog were walking along a road. The man was
enjoying the scenery, when it suddenly occurred to him that
he was dead. He remembered dying, and that the dog had been
dead for years. He wondered where the road was leading
After a while, they came to a high, white stone wall along
one side of the road. It looked like fine marble. At the
top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall arch that glowed
in the sunlight. When he was standing before it, he saw a
magnificent gate in the arch that looked like mother of
and the street that led to the gate looked like pure gold.
and the dog walked toward the gate, and as he got closer, he
saw a man at a desk to one side. When he was close enough,
he called out, "Excuse me, where are we?"
"This is heaven, sir," the man answered.
"Wow! Would you happen to have some water?" the man asked.
"Of course, sir. Come right in, and I'll have some ice
brought right up." The man gestured, and the gate began to
"Can my friend," gesturing toward his dog, "come in, too?"
"I'm sorry, sir, but we don't accept pets."
The man thought a moment and then turned back toward the
road and continued the way he had been going.
After another long walk, and at the top of another long
came to a dirt road which led through a farm gate that
if it had never been closed. There was no fence. As he
approached the gate, he saw a man inside, leaning against a
and reading a book.
"Excuse me!" he called to the reader. "Do you have any
"Yeah, sure, there's a pump over there" The man pointed to a
couldn't be seen from outside the gate. "Come on in."
"How about my friend here?" the traveler gestured to the
"There should be a bowl by the pump."
They went through the gate, and sure enough, there was an
fashioned hand pump with a bowl beside it. The traveler
the bowl and took a long drink himself, then he gave some to
dog. When they were full, he and the dog walked back toward
the man who was
standing by the tree waiting for them.
"What do you call this place?" the traveler asked.
"This is heaven," was the answer.
"Well, that's confusing," the traveler said. "The man down
road said that was heaven, too."
"Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and pearly
gates? Nope. That's hell."
"Doesn't it make you mad for them to use your name like
"No. I can see how you might think so, but we're just happy
they screen out the folks who'll leave their best friends
Regarding emotions, from a certain point they will no longer be burdened by
former experiences, but only by what is observed *now*; they will be genuine,
although things like anger can disappear altogether.
Exactly. The difference is feeling in the present, not past imposed on
Even anger may be expressed by a purely present being for the effect on the
Notions, paths and ideals are violent in their source - the individualized
mind. The drawing of boundaries - 'you are not me' - is combative.
Yes, this gets to the essence of the kind of boundary that divides
and conquers us, as we forgo realizing our own authorship.
We come to believe that we have drawn a boundary to suit ourselves,
and miss that it is this falsely constructed boundary that has
become our prison by defining us in unreal ways.
The boundary of "you are not me" is inherent to combat and isolation,
to needing to "have" and fearing to "be had".
The emotions that charge our boundary-drawing, the energies that
charge our physical boundaries, the ideas that charge our bounded
beliefs - these are the illusory realities that are given up by us
as we see Reality, and which are taken away by Reality as we allow It to
see us. Finally, then our seeing Reality and Reality seeing us is the
same seeing - and where then are the boundaries?
Subject: fave poet
here is a poem from a favorite poet, James Nolan:
One afternoon the sea
slipped into his ear
and it was all he could hear,
the rush of the tides,
his head to a conch
of bells and fog horns
and that is why
he only half listened,
that is really why
he was only half there,
half with the rattle of milk trucks
and half with the sea
in his ear.
Listen, they said,
your ear's stopped up,
and then tried to make
his ear go pop and
they locked him up and
they let him out but
it would not stop
and he washed through a life
that seemed a lot like
the lives all around him
wearing a vague stereo-
phrenic smile while
he churned with the currents
and was thrashed by the rhythms
growing louder and louder
until it was all he could hear,
all he could bear, and no one,
not a single one believed
that his head was filled
by the motioning ocean
but they believed the trail
of words the drowning man left,
cupped words, resonant as shells,
and were astonished as they
held them their ears.
Tim Gerchmez <core1@...
Subject: More Nisargadatta
Q: You too will die.
NM: I am dead already. Physical death will make no difference in my case.
I am timeless being. I am free of desire or fear, because I do not
remember the past, or imagine the future. Where there are no names and
shapes, how can there be desire and fear? With desirelessness comes
timelessness. I am safe, because what is not, cannot touch what is. Of
course, your body as such is complex and vulnerable and needs protection.
But not you. Once you realize your own unassailable being, you will be at
Q: How can I find peace when the world suffers?
NM: The world suffers for very valid reasons. If you want to help the
world, you must be beyond the need of help. Then all your doing as well as
not doing will help the world most effectively.
Q: How can non-action be of use where action is needed?
NM: Where action is needed, action happens. Man is not the actor. His is
to be aware of what is going on. His very presence is action. The window
is the absence of the wall and it gives air and light because it is empty.
Be empty of all mental content, of all imagination and effort, and the very
absence of obstacles will cause reality to rush in. If you really want to
help a person, keep away. If you are emotionally committed to helping, you
will fail to help. You may be very busy and be very pleased with your
charitable nature, but not much will be done. A man is really helped when
he is no longer in need of help. All else is just futility.
Q: There is not enough time to sit and wait for help to happen. One must
NM: By all means -- do. But what you can do is limited; the self alone is
unlimited. Give limitlessly -- of yourself. All else you can give in
small measures only. You alone are immeasurable. To help is your very
nature. Even when you eat and drink you help your body. For yourself you
need nothing. You are pure giving, beginning-less, endless, inexhaustible.
When you see sorrow and suffering, be with it. Do not rush into activity.
Neither learning nor action can really help. Be with sorrow and lay bare
its roots -- helping to understand is real help.
Q: My death is nearing.
NM: Your body is short of time, not you. Time and space are in the mind
only. You are not bound. Just understand yourself -- that itself is
Q: When an ordinary man dies, what happens to him?
NM: According to his belief it happens. As life before death is but
imagination, so is life after. The dream continues.
Q: And what about the gnani?
NM: The gnani does not die because he was never born.
Q: He appears so to others.
NM: But not to himself. In himself he is free of things -- physical and
Excerpt from 'I Am That'
Q: The perceiver is independent.
M: How do you know? Speak from your own experience. You say
you are not the mind nor the body. How do you know?
Q: I really do not know, guess so. I have no proof.
M: You yourself are the proof. You have not, nor can you
have any other proof. You are yourself, you know yourself,
you love yourself. Whatever the mind does, it does for the
love of its own self. The very nature of the self is love.
It is loved, loving and lovable. It is the self that makes
the body and the mind so interesting, so very dear. The very
attention given to them comes from the self.
Q: If the self is not the body nor the mind, can it exist
without the body and the mind?
M: Yes, it can. It is a matter of actual experience that the
self has being independent of mind and body. It is being -
awareness - bliss. Awareness of being is bliss.
Q: It may be a matter of actual experience to you, but it is
not my case. How can I come to the same experience? What
practices to follow, what exercises to take up?
M: To know that you are neither body nor mind, watch
yourself steadily and live unaffected by your body and mind,
completely aloof, as if you were dead. It means you have no
vested interests, either in the body or in the mind.
M: I am not asking you to commit suicide. Nor can you. You
can only kill the body, you cannot stop the mental process,
nor can you put an end to the person you think you are. Just
remain un-affected. This complete aloofness, unconcern with
mind and body is the best proof that at the core of your
being you are neither mind nor body. What happens to the
body and the mind may not be within your power to change,
but you can always put an end to your imagining yourself to
be body and mind. Whatever happens, remind yourself that
only your body and mind are affected, not yourself. The more
earnest you are at remembering what needs to be remembered,
the sooner will YOU be aware of yourself as you are, for
memory will become experience. Earnestness reveals being.
What is imagined and willed becomes actuality - here lies
the danger as well as the Way Out.
M: Increase and widen your desires till nothing but reality
can fulfil them. It is not desire that is wrong, but its
narrowness and smallness. Desire is devotion. By all means
be devoted to the real, the infinite, the eternal heart of
being. Transform desire into love. All you want is to be
happy. All your desires, whatever they may be, are
expressions of your longing for happiness. Basically, you
wish yourself well.
0: I know that I should not,
M: Wait! Who told you that you should not? What is wrong
with wanting to be happy?
Q: The self must go, I know.
M: But the self is there. Your desires are there. Your
longing to be happy is there. Why? Because you love
yourself. By all means love yourself - wisely. What is wrong
is to love yourself Stupidly, so as to make yourself suffer.
Love yourself wisely. Both indulgence and austerity have the
same purpose in view
- to make you happy. Indulgence is the stupid way, austerity
is the wise way.
Q: What is austerity?
M: Once you have gone through an experience, not to go
through it again is austerity. To eschew the unnecessary is
About I AM THAT -
I know 3 people whose only sadhana for a period of 5 years was to read I AM
THAT slowly, and over and over till the pages were frayed. They didn't
know each other, but when they finally did meet, they became fast friends!
And finally, Xan offered:
Stephen Lavine says
"Let your mind float in your heart".