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12/24/01 Monday

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  • Gloria Lee
    ... JERRY KATZ The teachings of Ramana and Nisargadatta are the simplest two-part teachings. I ll re-word them according to my understanding and
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 25 11:11 AM
      Jan Sultan wrote:
      > 1] Mindfulness
      > 2]
      Being in the Now
      > 3] Stillness of the mind.
      > Bliss lies
      in the gap between two thoughts.
      > Widen the gap gradually and fall into
      the peace that hides there.
      > Beyond the mind, via the gap, lies "I
      > Beyond the "I am" ...........
      The teachings of Ramana and Nisargadatta are the simplest two-part teachings. I'll re-word them according to my understanding and self-discovery:

      There is one occurrence: I AM.

      There is one knowledge: Standing Free (which might be called the 'Beyond I AM', or nondual reality.)

      Nisargadatta said to follow the I Am. Ramana said to inquire, Who am I?
      Same thing, as I see it. Then they both spoke of the 'beyond I Am'. And that's really it. Everything we talk about is a celebration or a variation of the teaching, and these are infinite in expression.


      I agree.
      However, to get past the clever mind [or to really understand these things]
      one has to devise fresh variations all the time.
      You have to remember that even Ramana and Nisargadatta had to do the same
      thing with previous teachings. Sometimes to read these two again and again
      does not help as one tires of repetitions.
      A slight variation, a fresh approach and voila! ... breakthrough!


      Going beyond 'I am', which is conceptual, perhaps we can say then that
      the understanding is no understanding, because I cannot know myself
      actually only conceptually, as if at a distance.

      If this is the case, and we will never know :-), then it could be said
      that everything we say is in violation of the teaching:-) endlessly so


      Q: When you say Being, are you talking about God? If you are, then why
      don't you say it?

      A: The word God has become empty of meaning through thousands of years of
      misuse. I use it sometimes, but I do so sparingly. By misuse, I mean that
      people who have never even glimpsed the realm of the sacred, the infinite
      vastness behind that word, use it with great conviction, as if they knew
      what they are talking about. Or they argue against it, as if they knew what
      it is that they are denying. This misuse gives rise to absurd beliefs,
      assertions, and egoic delusions, such as "My or our God is the only true
      God, and your God is false," or Nietzsche's famous statement "God is dead."
      The word God has become a closed concept. The moment the word is uttered, a
      mental image is created, no longer, perhaps, of an old man with a white
      beard, but still a mental representation of someone or something outside
      you, and, yes, almost inevitably a male someone or something.
      Neither God nor Being nor any other word can define or explain the
      ineffable reality behind the word, so the only important question is
      whether the word is a help or a hindrance in enabling you to experience
      That toward which it points. Does it point beyond itself to that
      transcendental reality, or does it lend itself too easily to becoming no
      more than an idea in your head that you believe in, a mental idol?
      The word Being explains nothing, but nor does God. Being, however, has the
      advantage that it is an open concept. It does not reduce the infinite
      invisible to a finite entity. It is impossible to form a mental image of
      it. Nobody can claim exclusive possession of Being. It is your very
      essence, and it is immediately accessible to you as the feeling of your own
      presence, the realization "I am" that is prior to I am this or I am that.
      So it is only a small step from the word Being to the experience of Being.

      And so it is that where another man might tell you to withdraw all your
      powers and thought within yourself and worship God there - and he would be
      saying what was absolutely right and true - I do not care to do so, because
      of my fear of a wrong and physical interpretation of what is said. But what
      I will say is this. See that in no sense you withdraw into yourself. And
      briefly, I do not want you to be outside or above, behind or beside
      yourself either!
      "Well" you will say, "where am I to be? 'Nowhere' according to you!" And
      you will be quite right! Nowhere is where I want you! Why when you are
      'nowhere' physically, you are 'everywhere' spiritually. Make it your
      business then to see that your spirit is tied to nothing physical, and you
      will find that wherever that thing is that you are giving your mind to,
      there you are too in spirit, just as surely as your body is where you are

      from: The Cloud of Unknowing
      [author: unknown English mystic of the fourteenth century]

      When my daughter was small she got the dubious part of the Bethlehem star in a Christmas play. After her first rehearsal she burst through the door with her costume, a five-pointed star lined in shiny gold tinsel designed to drape over her like a sandwich board. "What exactly will you be doing in the play?" I asked her.
      "I just stand there and shine," she told me.
      Sue Monk Kidd

      every morning a thousand words spring up
      so much to tell of love and pain
      of being and compassion

      every morning a thousand words spring up
      to rant and rave and laugh
      at the absurdity of it all

      every morning a thousand words spring up
      and swirl around like motes in the air
      and settle down as dust upon everything

      and i look at the broom
      as it dances this dust away
      and i smile

      loveya - michael

         Happy Christmas Folks,

           I Am Who Am I


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