Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Friday, March 8, 2002

Expand Messages
  • Jerry Katz
    The Nondual Highlights outstanding posts sent to the Nonduality Salon email list and other online communities Friday, March 8, 2002 The 997th Edition Search
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 9, 2002
      The Nondual Highlights

      outstanding posts sent to the Nonduality Salon email list
      and other online communities

      Friday, March 8, 2002

      The 997th Edition
      Search all Editions of the Nondual Highlights:

      Editors: Jerry Katz, Gloria Lee, Christiana Duranczyk, Michael Read, John Metzger

      Today's Highlights Edited by

      Jerry Katz



                                      universal grace - is nuclear grave
                                      universal power - on repulsive war
                                     universal dogma - is a vulgar demon
                                       universal love - on a virus level
                                        universal god - a golden virus
                                       universal space - silver saucepan
                                       universal game - evil man argues
                                        universal tool - overt allusion
                                     universal theory - on virtual heresy
                                      universal belief - unbelievers fail
                                       universal logos - valorous single
                                       universal math - hum as interval
                                    universal teacher - a cleverish nature
                                  universal application - principal evaluations
                                     universal essence - clever uneasiness
                                       essence of NDS - confess needs
                                  essence of rudeness - so censures defense
                                       essence of self - fences feel so
                                     essence of caring - science of ranges
                                       essence of love - seven cool fees
                                      essence of space - peace confesses


      from Petros-Truth

      When feeling any negative, painful feeling, simply
      be aware that it is a negative, painful feeling,
      without manipulation, without judgment, without

      Do the same for positive, pleasurable feelings.
      Always non-clinging, always recognizing the
      nonpresence of a separate "self" in the feeling,
      always mindful, always nonjudgmental.

      Never repress, deny, exaggerate, or otherwise try
      to superficially control or strategize a feeling.

      Feel all feelings as spontaneous arisings. Consider
      all feelings as fuel to burn off karmic

      -- from the Satipatthana Sutta at


      BOBBY G. contributes

      Sri Ramana Maharshi-"Reality in Forty Verses"

      11. Without knowing the Self that knows, to know
      all objects is not knowledge; it is only ignorance.
      Self, the ground of knowledge and the non-Self,
      being known, both knowledge and ignorance fall

      12, True Knowledge is being devoid of knowledge as
      well as ignorance of objects. Knowledge of objects
      is not true knowledge. Since the Self shines
      self-luminous, with nothing else for It to know,
      with nothing else to know It, the Self is
      Knowledge. Nescience It is not.

      13. The Self that is Awareness, that alone is true.
      The knowledge which is various is ignorance. And
      even ignorance, which is false, cannot exist apart
      from the Self. False are the many jewels, for apart
      from gold, which alone is true, they cannot exist.



      Dear Bobby,
      thank you very much for your comments.. in fact,
      indirectly, one of the purposes of this essay is to
      show that western society (and its philosophy) is
      mostly based on the normative ethics i try to
      demystify and renounce.. with a few exceptions like
      f.e. Nietzsche (and Wittgenstein ('Each a few of my
      favourite quotes..

      'There are no moral phenomena, only a moral
      interpretation of phenomena' Nietzsche

      'Philosophers use a language that is already
      deformed as though by shoes that are too tight'
      'Don't take the example of others as your guide,
      but nature' 'Each of the sentences I write is
      typing to say the whole thing, i.e. the same thing
      over and over again; it is as though they were all
      simply views of one object seen from different
      angles.' Wittgenstein

      in the essay i try to show that normative ethics
      are a rejection of our own existence (viz. taking
      up a role), and that we need to acknowledge and
      re-cognise non-normative ethics.. in that way, a
      new 'hierarchy' appears, viz. the 'distinction'
      between those acknowledging non-normativity and
      acting in that way and those who 'think or pretend
      to be normative'..

      in other words, when we 'break down' normative
      ethics as universal scale (both in its universal
      and relativist form), we are re- cognising
      non-normative ethics as a scale, in fact the only
      truly universal scale, for ethics.. when we
      re-cognise that it is not the individual acting,
      but always the universe looking at itself, we re-
      cognise this realisation as the basis of our
      ethics, viz. non- normative ethics.. in that
      perspective, "..to be ethical is to exist without
      taking up a 'role'; 'the point is to prefer being
      to seeming'. To be ethical in this sense is to act
      from the awareness of the situation; to live in the
      awareness that each situation is real and to allow
      the truth of that situation to be acknowledged.
      Sartwell defines this as 'ethics of authenticity';
      a willingness and faith in one's own being in the
      situation without taking up a role, adding that:
      "…We are all 'ethical' merely by existing…".

      In fact, as 'we are all already real' in each
      particular situation, "… The point is to live in an
      acknowledgement, enactment, and celebration of the
      fact…".Therefore; "…The task of living in truth is
      a matter of keeping faith with oneself as a real,
      situated, particular being. The 'ethics' of
      authenticity emerges out of a willingness to hold
      on to oneself (thus not to 'roles', ed.), to allow
      oneself to be…".

      there is another reason why i view non-normative
      ethics as a new universal scale.. as normative
      ethics represent a rejection of our existence, they
      are fundamentally contradictory to two crucial
      features of our own existence; "..Fundamental is
      that two crucial 'modes' of our world, peace and
      love, are contradictory to normative ethics and
      exactly a result of non-normative ethics: "…
      Abstractions are precisely what it is impossible to
      love; love is always precisely what holds dear the
      particularity of the beloved. Love is an opening of
      the self to the particularity of the beloved, so
      that love is not an abstraction away from ugliness
      but an allowance of ugliness to be…Particular
      people are the hardest thing to love; on the other
      hand, they're the only people that can be loved… To
      love is to allow the beloved to be outside of one's
      control, or rather, to acknowledge that the beloved
      is outside one's control…We speak of loving people
      'just as they are'…Peace flows from letting oneself
      go, as does humor, for example, which often occurs
      in an allowance of oneself and the world to be…".

      As a sage once said; Life is hard, it's breathe,
      breathe, breathe all the time... i guess we're all
      little 'fans'.. :)

      i thank you again for your inspiring comments and
      suggestions.. to end a small quote from the Atharva

      We are the birds of the same nest,
      We may wear different skins,
      We may speak different languages,
      We may believe in different religions,
      We may belong to different cultures,
      Yet we share the same home - our earth.

      Born on the same planet
      Covered by the same skies
      Gazing at the same stars
      Breathing the same air
      We must learn to happily progress together
      Or miserably perish together,
      For man can live individually,
      But can survive only collectively

      let love rule :)

      BOBBY G.

      I think this touches on something I try to say to
      people in conversations to get them to think
      outside the box. It is this. "I believe in anarchy"
      It is true by the way, I do, because I am referring
      to the idea that no government will work
      indefinitely without perfect people and with
      perfect people you don't need the government or

      At some point I expect humanity to grow up and
      leave the ego behind. I believe that will happen
      and so I work for it the only way it is possible.
      On myself. Thus anarchy is the highest goal for
      humanity. My friends seldom agree.



      Kenny's foreword to an upcoming book. It's nasty
      and rude.



      Thanks for the loud laugh John! Talk is cheap
      but... Kenny has to make a living too and obviously
      his skills are neither analytical nor poetical as
      for instance, Ramana's or Yogananda's devotees, to
      mention just two, weren't asked. When knowing how
      the mind works, appropriate issues can be dressed
      in sweetest words, yet never failing to 'hit' their
      target. Hence the foreword reminds of the belief
      that the fast food industry (rude boys) is much
      better for your health than ecological farming
      (nice guys).

      Not to mention those Kenny is referring to could,
      using his favored "rude boy talk", be labeled the
      handicapperceiving, clubbing Neanderthal clowns of
      the new age enlightenment circus: a business for
      profit only.



      Copyright 2002

      from Live Journal
      The mirror before me held a platter of stars and I
      gazed up to where the black rim of silhouetted
      trees met an eerie chartreuse blended with a blood
      red, which melted into permanent black dotted with
      an infinite array of galaxies and open clusters and
      the moment was too beautiful to pass by, so I went
      back to the cabin and grabbed my swimsuit. I’d
      never seen a lake as serene without ripple, and I
      tripped with excitement, as I scampered up the
      mosquito-ridden slope towards the cabin, quickly
      stripping off my clothes and robing myself in a
      swimsuit I’d owned for four years. When I returned
      to the black mirrored lake, I heard a momentary
      fright in my head, that spoke to me with whispers
      of inhibition. It said: “this is spooky and this is
      strange and are you deranged for entering an
      unknown?” It was closing in on midnight and the
      other women stayed near the docks, quietly
      gossiping and waiting for me to exceed my
      boundaries and then return. The skin of the lake
      inhaled me into its frigid depths and if I imagined
      my body as being warm, I found I was warm and
      invited into the depths surrounding me. But the
      water was so still, it felt like jello - as an ant
      in a casserole dish of deep blue jello - impossibly
      consuming my minuscule body - and it being large
      enough to fill two million me’s - I began to see
      that it was not that I swam in it, it was that I
      was held up by it. And when I swam entirely
      submerged, my every movement created the only
      ripples in sight and I imagined fish and
      prehistoric spirit animals nibbling at the corners
      of my toes, and I thought I heard moaning in the
      waters. But the waters kept me bouyant, if I let
      them hold me in the tentacles of a million hydrogen
      atoms fused with oxygen, billions of atoms creating
      a gigantic chain link fence of jello water that
      suspended me as I swam, further and further away
      from the docks, and further into the lake and I
      imagined myself as a single tear immersed in a vast
      ocean current. Becoming completely connected to
      every vast tear in the ocean but being there, by
      being here. And as my limbs grew exhausted and my
      mind grew frightened, I emerged onto an old, mouldy
      buoy, suspended alone in the middle of the lake,
      held still by some barrels or cement anchor beneath
      me, which I did not imagine, and still do not
      imagine existed. Only in that moment, a moment
      irrepeatable and shared with only myself, I lay
      back on that chipped-white painted dock, with
      strange dragonflies hovering above my silent mind
      and green fungis tickling the interior of my knee.

      And I lay there soaking in infinity. I grew colder
      and colder, as I gazed up into the stars above me.
      I became sad, knowing that I knew less than a dozen
      egyptian astronomers and that the constellations
      held no wisdom for me. But sometimes the
      meaningless creeps in. It seems to creep in most
      often when one ponders the astronomical smallness
      of earth. In a portion of sky no wider than a shell
      of sand is wide, we see thousands of galaxies, each
      containing 200 billion stars, each possibly
      containing millions of consciousnesses like our
      own. Oh, and we are so alone. Or are we? The
      nearest galaxy is nearly 200 billion light years
      away, and each light year contains trillions of
      miles traveled at 186,000 feet per second. And to
      make one orbit around the entire nucleus of the
      Milky Way requires 230 million years of waiting -
      which is one ‘cosmic year’ as deemed by
      astronomers. As if seeing evidence of the transient
      nature of life here on earth is not enough to make
      you feel small and meaningless, I guess pondering
      the vastness of the universe is supposed to make
      you feel even more worthless. But it got me
      thinking - if all those astronomers were more
      content with being here now, would even their
      wildest curiosity take them tripping out into the
      darkest light sent on vibrations from stars
      millions of years ago? What’s the point of
      pondering the vastness without if you can’t go deep
      into the vastness within? And who says which one
      has more meaning? It depends on the values of any
      given person.

      The universe soaked me into a second and I lay
      there with my eyes closed, only feeling, when
      suddenly the schoolteacher from the docks called
      out to me: “Come back in, Swim in now, It’s getting
      late.” I resented and resisted. She yelled some
      more and I hemmed and hawwed. It’s a matter of
      philosophical importance. To be truly free is to
      truly be present in the desire to drink in the
      beautiful universe. I procrastinated in my stay for
      five minutes, and dove back in after they grew
      impatient. The water, again, warm and buoyant,
      clear and fluid against my rigid body strokes. The
      lake held me in its momentary arms and I imagined
      from a mile above, a speck of nothing cradled in a
      vast cocoon of God-consciousness. The lake vibrated
      a smile ripple into me and I felt grateful to be
      held. The dock lay before me, but as my strokes
      propelled me through the water, I heard myself say:
      ‘trust God,’ and suddenly a meteorite fanned across
      the falling star sky, as if acknowledging the
      revelation in my heart and I repeated: ‘Trust God,
      Trust God, Trust God, Trust God.’ The words
      circulated in a cyclical spin, dizzying my head,
      until it became my weekly mantra, and I exited the
      lake for the very last time, soaked up my exhausted
      hair, lapped up the remaining licks of moisture on
      my skin, crawled into bed and fell asleep.

      My faith in vastness, in the existence of
      timelessness, outside of our time-space, is so
      passionate, that is one of the few ?things? that
      will never suffer from the transcience of my
      abandonment. I spoke to God as a child, when as
      four year years old, and in utter vilification of
      my mother, who sent me slamming into my room and
      under my sheets, weeping, pleading, begging for the
      return of my father from another day at work. In
      those years, I conversed primarily with an
      imaginary friend named Jonathan. Coincidentally, my
      brother’s name is Jonathan, and through some
      experiences involving DXM and late-night
      conversations over marijuana, I have come to feel
      an intense soul-twin connection with him, as if we
      are cosmically united and came into this world to
      breathe together and awaken one another.

      My faith has gone through many fluxuations, phases
      and (ac)knowledges. As a child, my faith existed in
      imagination, in a world I created for myself,
      because I had no friends that could tolerate me - I
      felt I existed so far outside of the commonplace,
      and as a result, I had to imagine my friends
      existence and converse only with them. The result
      was an imaginary world of elves and fairies and
      rituals that necessitated the existence of pills to
      be swallowed before crossing Main Street, on my
      daily pilgrimage to and from elementary school
      seven blocks away, otherwise the Trolls guarding
      Main Street would chase and gobble my fairy friends
      and I.

      I grew up in a household of strict Protestant
      Christianity. My mother and father took my two
      brothers and I, crammed into the backseat of our
      1981 Cutlass Supreme station-wagon with my head
      dozing onto the edge of my brother’s car-seat, to
      church every Sunday. We listened to Public Radio
      and Medieval Christmas music and we were forced to
      suffer the hour drive to church listening to
      Prairie Home Companion one too many times. As a
      child, church was the place where the old people
      sang hymns and where the children sat bored out of
      their skulls. But for me, it held a magical
      majesty. When at the age of five I stood next to my
      grandfather during church service, he forced me to
      sing, despite my reluctance, telling me that if he
      had to sing, I had to sing. (My grandfather was a
      baritone operatic and singing was a fundamental
      passion.) As a result, I spent the rest of my
      childhood singing the church hymns, not because I
      wanted to, but because grandpa said so. I began
      improv(is)ing on the songs, incorporating
      motown-ish licks underneath my breath, unbeknownst
      to the community of aging farmers and their wives
      that I went to church with.

      These old farm-hewn women knew how to make
      excellent homemade noodles and pies, and we had
      potlucks on a bi-weekly basis. On a warm Sunday
      afternoon, the elders would sit around discussing
      things that were too big or too boring for us
      children, meanwhile after eating too many noodles
      and too much chicken and strawberry-rhubarb pies,
      we children would go outside and frolick in the
      yard. It was a beautiful community and a beautiful
      way to wile away the hours. Quite often, I would
      stroll through the cemetary alone, waiting for my
      parents to finish with their conversations, a
      cemetary which had buried a number of my ancestors
      and relatives.

      My mother educated me on the beliefs of our church.
      She explained to me that we were pacifists and
      conscientious-objectors, that we had revolted
      against the Lutheran protestants in an ancient
      Germany. She told me that my ancestors were
      spiritual dissidents that arrived in America
      seeking religious freedom, leaving Germany as
      Anabaptists that were persecuted and hanged for
      their foot-washing ceremonies and new-testament
      based beliefs. During the love-feasts that I grew
      to love as a child, the men and women sat on
      opposite sides of the hall, and candles provided
      our only light, which kept it dark and mysterious,
      and for me magical. We drank grape juice and broke
      and ate communion bread (a delicacy the recipes of
      which were kept secret inside the imaginations of
      old German Baptist women - as they all had their
      own recipes and they were always better than anyone
      else’s). We washed each other’s feet and sang hymns
      that reverberated through our chests and our
      hearts. These were ancient hymns, crafted through
      some man’s inspiration, the most benevolent of
      which were as polished and worn as holy wooden
      pews, varnished brown - exposing the veins inside
      its tree trunk.

      My ancestors stood in spiritual opposition to a
      world they saw as corrupt and vain. They wore plain
      clothes, lived simple lives, ate plain food, worked
      in farm fields and separated themselves from city
      lives brimming with sexuality and passion. To me,
      they resemble hippies living on communes, eating
      vegetarian food and appreciating simplicity and
      vast beauty amidst divine creation. I never
      questioned my heritage. In fact, I embraced and
      grew comfortable in the history of my ancestors.
      But my ancestors grew complacent in their
      spirituality, which had a hard time reconciling
      itself with modernity. Eventually, women’s rights
      and women preachers and cars and technology would
      cause unfathomable schisms to breach the tree trunk
      of their dogma. I ended up living the modern life
      that my ancestors abhorred, and found my way back
      to their simplicity by knowing too well the society
      around me that wants me to desire, and buy, and
      live in fear, and to forget history, and to forget
      that life is sacred.

      Eventually, I wandered outside of the confines of
      my ancestor’s spirituality and into Hinduism and
      Buddhism and Sufism and Taoism. At some point, I
      was confronted with atheism, and I looked the other
      way. God was the only constant in my life, and I
      could not give up my soul for the sake of
      rationalism and the gratuitious absurdity of
      skepticism. But I had a problem. I kept falling in
      love with a series of intellectuals and artists who
      chipped away at my belief system, forcing me to
      confront God and Sexuality and Marijuana head on.
      Now that I see no conflict between being ecstatic
      during both sex and during spiritual liberation
      (and sometimes the two seem to intermingle) - I
      have found liberation inside orgasms and
      ejaculations and mindgasms and oceans and wisdoms
      that I once only read about, but never understood.

      My spiritual practice is essential to my existence
      - and it arrives after years of intellectual
      searching, of reading books and poetry, of writing
      mountains of poetry and songs and taking prodigious
      volumes of photography and of singing and dancing
      and celebrating in the existence of existence. My
      connection to the universe, to the energy that is
      greater than myself, that which I can call God, the
      cosmos, the soul, the godhead, the divine, Allah,
      Buddha-nature, Brahman, is something that I
      experience on a real level, in a day-to-day
      presents (presence). I know the sacred within my
      heart. My faith, when everything else is stripped
      away, is the only ‘thing’ I know to be true, and is
      the only ‘thing’ I will never discard. After I
      discard every ‘thing’ I have ever owned, including
      this body and these memories, I believe I will
      return to the infinite god-consciousness, that
      which some have called heaven, and which
      enlightenment is called heaven-on-earth or as Jesus
      described ‘heaven within yourself.’ I know that the
      door will be opened if you knock on it, and you
      will receive if you ask.

      It is not simply about asking and receiving. It is
      about dancing. My spiritual ancestors abhorred
      dancing, and vilified it, believing dancing to be
      erotic and dangerous for the pure of heart. I
      disagree with my ancestors, and believe that inside
      dancing it is possible to discover complete
      surrender to the present, which is transcendence. I
      believe that by acknowledging the eternal inside a
      present moment, to honor the sacred and create
      magic out of just another mundane moment, it is
      possible to open it up and surrender to God in
      complete transcendence and to feel the orgiastic
      heat waves of life pulsating through and inside
      yourself and the universe spiraling above and
      behind you, below and around you. I believe
      enlightenment to be your heart, my heart, opened
      and fully exposed to the whooshing of cosmic energy
      through the plankton of your soul, to be siphoned
      through the briny barnacles of an ecosystem of joy,
      surrounded by communities of mussels - muses that
      are the history of shamans and mystics and artists
      and poets around you.

      So I choose to celebrate that moment. That’s what
      it is. A celebration of that moment of life. It is
      a prayer and a meditation and a rejoicing. That’s
      why it is so transcendent and ecstatic - because
      you’re so glad you get to be alive for that moment
      that you want to give back everything you can -
      everything you feel in the fullest rapture possible
      to the universe which gave you this moment. By
      standing back and watching it pass, you are giving
      the universe no joy, and thus you receive no joy.
      By praising that moment the universe praises you
      and a circle of joy and admiration ensues.

      I dance because if I do not dance with my arms
      fully wide open to the heavens, I will not fulfill
      myself. I can stand and watch or I can dance. The
      choice is up to the individual. My choice will
      always be: Dance and never look back. This relates
      to photography. If the world around you isn’t the
      most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen before - then
      you’re not a photographer. If you can’t jump inside
      someone’s eyelash and exclaim with ecstasy that
      that facial expression is a moment of pure joy,
      what are you doing? Begin noticing how the littlest
      of things are the same as the biggest of things.
      People look at my abstracts of a granite beach
      covered with barnacles and mussels and they wonder
      how I thought of seeing the world that way. I
      didn’t think to see the world that way. I just saw
      a moment of mind-exploding beauty and I wanted to
      preserve it for myself. Really, it’s completely
      selfish. But someone else looks at it and they see
      that instead of looking like a tidal pool with
      mussels and barnacles - they see instead a valley
      nestled in rounded hills surrounded by white trees
      and a perfectly translucent lake. In order to
      interpret it - they have to imagine what they’re
      seeing. They take a leap of faith and see something
      in a way they’ve never seen before. And then they
      realize there’s more than one way of looking at the
      world. They see that the smallest of tide pools are
      no different than the forest - they both have
      ecosystems complete unto themselves that if we
      bother will be destroyed. It is best to keep these
      ecosystems complete because then we get to see the
      beauty of its magnificent plan, rather than the
      cruddy ruddiness of our disintegrating society that
      in 500 years will mean nothing to anyone else
      except that it profoundly dysfunctionalized their
      society. We’ve got to start looking for the
      connections rather than distractions if we’re going
      to start seeing what the world is really made of
      and capable of.

      I believe enlightenment is a state of mind, a level
      of awareness wherein we are liberated from the
      imposition of unfulfilled desires and fears that
      contain our weaknesses. If freedom is a state of
      mind, it is possible to be living as a starved,
      emaciated slave inside a concentration camp and
      still be free. Though the shackles of a war-torn,
      poverty and disease ridden existence such as found
      in Sudan or Afghanistan can be the cause for
      complete mental imprisonment inside fear and
      jealousy and pride, it is possible to see through
      the transient metal bars that bind us. Freedom is
      the imagination to transcend fears placed over our
      eyes that know only how to look without seeing. But
      if we are not encouraging everyone in our
      surroundings to find the same freedom, then our
      freedom is selfish and false. If we are individuals
      standing in opposition to the rest of humanity, and
      we are not seeing a path towards the liberation of
      all humanity, then we are not really seeing the
      truth, and we are not truly enlightened. Our fears
      would keep us selfish, hoarding our knowledge and
      our wisdom, keeping our vision unique to our own
      and our immediate circle. If God is truly present
      in existence, in our existence, in our minds and
      our hearts, then we will want to help others find
      God within their world, divinity within their
      souls, creation within creation. By creating art,
      we are joining the vastly creative creator in the
      act of creation - we are helping others to imagine
      themselves as creators, and we are joining in the
      chorus of creators before us who used their
      imagination and intellect and hearts communicate
      with history and their world. In my humble opinion,
      I believe creating art is the noblest and most
      important job on the planet, because through art we
      open up in the hearts of others what it can mean to
      be alive, what it can mean to imagine, what it can
      mean to be healed and whole, in a world that is
      sadly dysfunctional and imbalanced, in a world
      fraught with struggles of gender and violence and
      despair and poverty.

      True freedom is not the freedom we speak of in
      America, the freedom of the American flag and the
      statue of liberty. Freedom is liberation inside the
      mind, a balancing of the mind and body and soul,
      liberation from transience and ego-gratification.
      When you find it, you will want to dance inside it
      infinitely and you will want everyone around you to
      dance in their unique ecstasy.

    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.