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#4651 - Wednesday, July 11, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz

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  • Jerry Katz
    #4651 - Wednesday, July 11, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz The Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights/ ... Here s the newest Guest
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 11, 2012
      #4651 - Wednesday, July 11, 2012 - Editor: Jerry Katz
      The Nonduality Highlightshttp://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights/

      Here's the newest Guest Teaching Series post on Awakening Clarity, this one from teacher and author, Stephen Bodian.  To read the whole post, or twenty other guest posts, click here:  http://awakeningclarity.blogspot.com/
      A Guide to the Journey of Spiritual Awakening

      Stephan Bodian

      Although spiritual awakening itself is generally a blissful, expansive experience that may be accompanied by weeks or months of extraordinary inner peace, joy, love, and freedom from reactivity, it's often followed by an extended period of insecurity and confusion. After all, you've just experienced the most profound paradigm shift imaginable--the seeming center of your universe, the separate self you've spent a lifetime cultivating and serving, has revealed itself to be a colossal illusion. Even though you may have encountered spiritual teachings that helped prepare you for this tectonic shift in consciousness, the experience itself can be frightening and disorienting as your accustomed world collapses around you.

      In particular, the ego may feel threatened by the radiant emptiness that has revealed itself to be your essence, your true nature, and it will do everything it knows how to make you forget who you are. (Remember, that's its job description, its reason for being, and it's been doing its job well for a very long time.) Committed to seeing itself as a separate someone with a particular life story--with all the suffering and exhilaration, success and failure, this story brings--the ego is terrified of being annihilated. The tactics it employs may be heavy-handed or subtle and range from trying to stuff awakening back into a conceptual box to attempting to co-opt awakening for its own purposes. But the result is the same: the clouding or distortion of the truth to which you've just awakened and the reassertion of the ego's control. Here are seven of the ego's favorite ploys.

      by Jeff Foster
      In an increasingly depersonalised world of faceless internet forums and forms and unloved factories churning out unloved and unwanted plastic, it seems to me that the last thing we need is an ‘I am not a person and neither are you’ philosophy pretending to be the absolute truth yet devoid of basic human compassion; a philosophy that was originally imported from India and then totally misunderstood, warped, distorted and even abused by the western mind desperately trying to nourish its own already-depersonalised and faceless conditioning.
      Since when did spirituality, with all its beautiful and transformative potential, become about simply believing that you’re ‘not a person’, that you don’t have a body and that you care about nothing because there’s nothing to care about, and ‘nobody there’ to care anyway? Since when did freedom get mixed up so badly with nihilism? It is a gross misunderstanding of Advaita and it only feeds the already depersonalised and disembodied ego that is running rampant.
      Whenever I hear someone using the words ‘I am nobody’ or ‘there is no choice’ to justify any kind of violence, inner or outer, or to protect themselves from human intimacy or pain or a sense of responsibility; whenever I stumble across a Facebook argument between two non-existent egos fighting to prove to each other how non-existent their egos are or how far ‘beyond the personal’ they have gone, I hear Ramana Maharshi and all the saints and sages who knew deeply that clarity and love cannot be divided, sighing with basic human compassion, and infinite patience.


      Taoist expression of non-duality
      Without the concept of an other,
      There is no separate I.
      Without the sense of an I,
      nothing can be seen as other.
      There is some power that determines things,
      but I don’t know what it is.
      It has no form or substance,
      acts without doing,
      keeps the whole universe in order,
      and seems to get along
      perfectly well without me.
      ~ Chuang-tzu

      Trans. Stephen Mitchell, ‘The Second Book of the Tao’ (Penguin Books, 2009)

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