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#3676 - Monday, October 5, 2009 - Editor: Gloria Lee

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  • Gloria Lee
    #3676 - Monday, October 5, 2009 - Editor: Gloria Lee The Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights The Teacher in Everything In taking
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 5, 2009
      #3676 - Monday, October 5, 2009 - Editor: Gloria Lee

      The Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights
      The Teacher in Everything

      In taking up Zen Buddhism, we find that the life of the Buddha is our own life. Not only Shakyamuni's life, but the lives of all the succeeding teachers in our lineage are our own lives. As Wu-men Hui-k'ai has said, in true Zen practice our very eyebrows are tangled with those of our ancestral teachers, and we see with their eyes and hear with their ears. This is not because we copy them, or change to be like them. I might explain Wu-men's words by saying that in finding our own true nature, we find the true nature of all things, which the old teachers so clearly showed in their words and actions. But the authentic experience of identity is intimate beyond explanation. And it's not only with old teachers that we find complete intimacy. The Chinese thrush sings in my heart and gray clouds gather in the empty sky of my mind. All things are my teacher.
      - Robert Aiken Roshi "The Teacher in Everything," Tricycle, Fall 2001

      Read the complete article on tricycle.com

      by V. Subrahmanya Iyer (Author), Andre van den Brink (Compiler), Mark Scorelle (Editor)
      Mark Scorelle
      Paul Brunton left 1200 pages of single spaced type written notes from his period with V.S.Iyer. Iyer was an Advaitin teacher behind the scenes of the Ramakrishna Mission in the 40's. Guru of Swami Siddeshwarananda and Swami Nikhilananda and the Maharaja of Mysore. The notes are available at http://wisdomsgoldenrod.org/publications/#vsiyer Out of that material I compiled the paragraphs I thought were the best, most concise and to the point. I had them on the website for years and then someone studied the material and asked to publish the compilation. Nice cover, eh. Here it is.

      by Rupert Spira
      Dear Chuckee,

      I am touched by the openness and honesty of your response. I feel that in
      our conversations in this group we are beginning to move away from the more
      intellectual aspect of the teaching (which certainly has its place) and to
      talk more about raw experience.

      Chuckee: I have come to the conclusion that it's a matter of grace, and
      there is nothing outside of that that can affect a thing in regards to

      Rupert: I agree with you entirely that 'there is nothing outside of that
      (grace) that can affect a thing with regards to awakening...' but we seem to
      have a different understanding of what constitutes grace. You seem to
      suggest (and please correct me if I have misunderstood) that grace comes
      only in the form of an unsolicited and spontaneous awakening such as took
      place for you 40 years ago. Moreover, you suggest that anything other than
      such a spontaneous event is somehow simply "all mere entertainment....
      Passing the time as mistaken identities searching for something that can't
      be found."

      In other words, you first decide what constitutes grace and what does not,
      and then dismiss anything that does not fall within your own particular
      belief as mere entertainment and trivia.

      But how do you know that a 'chance' meeting, a book that you come across, a
      few words read in an email or suggested by a friend, the desire to sit
      quietly and welcome your feelings or to turn your attention towards its
      source and other such occurrences, suggestions or impulses, are not
      expressions of exactly the same grace that delivered that experience 40
      years ago? The only thing that makes them seem otherwise is your belief that
      they are otherwise.

      If we did not superimpose our own beliefs on top of grace (yes, of course,
      that is also an expression of grace) we would relieve ourselves of the
      'there is nothing to do' dogma and more importantly the despair and
      frustration that accompanies it. We would be open to the possibility that
      grace comes in a wide variety of ways and that each of those ways is
      uniquely tailored to our predicament, even sometimes in ways that may
      challenge our views as to what true 'non-duality' looks like.

      I meet so many people who are unhappy and have been told there is absolutely
      nothing they can do about it. So, in addition to their unhappiness a layer
      of resignation and frustration has been added. This unhappiness is often all
      the more intense in those such as yourself who have had profound moments or
      periods of awakening.

      It is quite true that from an absolute point of view there is nothing to do
      and no one to do it. However, unhappy people are not speaking from the
      absolute point of view. They are speaking from a level at which the apparent
      separate entity, its unhappiness and the seeking that inevitably attends it,
      are experienced as being very real. There is absolutely no judgement in

      It is important to understand that as this apparent entity, doing or not
      doing is not a choice. Doing (in this case searching for happiness) is
      INEVITABLE and UNAVOIDABLE if we feel we are a separate entity, that is, if
      we are unhappy. It is disingenuous to say, "I feel I am a person, a separate
      entity, and I am unhappy, and yet I know that there is nothing to do." The
      separate entity IS the doer, the searcher, the thinker etc. What has
      happened in such cases is that a thin veneer of kosha advaita has been
      washed over our belief and feeling of separation.

      At the risk of being repetitive let me repeat this in a slightly different
      form, as it goes to the heart of the matter as to whether or not there is
      something to be done:

      If we are unhappy we are, by definition, rejecting the current situation. We
      want things to be different. This rejection of the current situation is
      itself synonymous with the search for a different situation, that is, the
      search for happiness in the future. In other words unhappiness and the
      search for happiness are inseparable.

      If we say that we are unhappy and that at the same time we understand there
      is nothing we can do, that there is no search, then we simply haven't looked
      deeply enough at our present condition.

      In such a case, one clear look at ourselves will reveal an apparent entity
      who is very much in search, that is, an entity that is doing something.
      Therefore, seeking happiness is, for the one who believes him or herself to
      be an entity, not a choice. It is a given. The separate person IS the search
      for happiness.

      So, the best advice such a person can be given is to seek happiness in the
      right place. As a result of the experience you describe, which took place 40
      years ago, you have already been given direct insight as to the true nature
      of happiness. It is not necessary to have such an experience to come to the
      understanding that happiness is not to be found in the realm of the mind,
      body or world, but as this has happened for you, you are in no doubt.

      If, as you say, your experience was 'a full blown awakening' then you will
      be absolutely certain that it was not located in time or space. You will be
      certain that what you are is unlimited, unlocated, unborn, unchanging,
      undying Presence. Your glimpse was a revelation of that which is
      ever-present in your experience. This means that right now, in this very
      simple act of reading these words, that non-objective experience is present.

      This deep longing in your heart is a mixture of the very happiness you seek
      plus the belief and feeling that it is not present. If we superimpose the
      belief that there is nothing that can be done in relation to the unveiling
      of happiness, we consign ourselves to resignation, frustration and despair,
      relieved by odd moments of happiness. It is true that the longing in our
      hearts cannot be filled. But it can be dissolved.

      It is true that the company of a qualified teacher 40 years ago would have
      been able to point you in the right direction, that is, towards the reality
      of your experience. But that help is all around you.

      Happiness is the simple recognition of our own being - it is the most
      natural thing. That which recognises this Being and that which is recognised
      are one and the same.

      As I mentioned to Claudia yesterday it is naïve to expect happiness to
      remain ever-present after such an awakening. The mind and the body often
      come back with a vengeance. It is at this time that a qualified teacher can
      help, both in interpreting the often perplexing reappearance of old patterns
      of feeling and, more importantly in helping to slowly realign the mind and
      the body with our new awakening. In the absence of such a teacher the old
      habits will, in most cases, prevail.

      So, if we think we are a person (and feel unhappy as a result) there are two
      things that can be done. One, is to seek the source of that apparent person.
      As we turn our attention towards our own Being, this very one, the apparent
      entity who seemed to turn his attention, is revealed to be none other than
      Presence itself.

      And two, taking our stand as this aware presence, we can cooperate with the
      realignment of the mind and the body, and indeed the world, with this new
      stance. It just requires patience, clarity and courage.

      Presence has seemed to veil itself from itself by taking the shape of
      dualistic thought. But being the very substance of all experience, Presence
      has also provided within every experience, the way back to itself, a golden
      thread....the way of investigation and contemplation.

      From the point of view of a person these two possibilities will inevitably
      feel like a doing - so be it. They are Presence's gift of grace to itself.

      With love,


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