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  • richmc2003
    Okay, I m up late at night and I m having a mental conundrum and can t sleep. I m thinking about my career goals and how it relates to my spiritual practice,
    Message 1 of 5 , Sep 30, 2003
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      Okay, I'm up late at night and I'm having a mental conundrum and can't
      sleep. I'm thinking about my career goals and how it relates to my
      spiritual practice, and how my interpersonal conflicts relate to my
      spiritual practice, and how all of this ties into my quest for
      happiness. I was having a train of thought and I think I've come up
      with a perfect plan of attack on the quest for...oh I don't
      know...whatever the heck we're all questing for. I know I've got a
      long way to go in my search for wisdom and I've seen that there are
      people in this group who are certainly wiser than I. But regardless
      of my deficiencies, I'm a seeker just like anyone else, so I don't see
      the harm in throwing my two cents in just to see how other people
      react. I know I'm still very self-centered but I am reaching out to
      others which I guess is a good first step. Okay, so back to the main
      point of this message. I was laying in bed..and I'm all wound up
      because somebody in my immediate sphere of experience said something
      to tick me off this evening. I won't go into any details because it's
      not very important. I'll let the reader fill in the blank on that
      one. But there I was in bed because of it, going through a big
      introspective mental churning on the nature of conflict, happiness,
      spiritual development, etc., like I said above. And that led to me
      narrowing enlightenment down to an equation. I think now I've figured
      out that there are two major components that go into the quest. Two
      sister practices, if you will. Both equally important. One of these
      practices is the thing that you do when you go hide in a cave in the
      Himalayas to find your brain in the universe, and all that good stuff.
      It sounds funny but this is just as important as anything else,
      because here we're talking about pure awareness; the level of
      mindfulness that you are able to bear upon your existence. Very
      important stuff. But then there is the other practice, and this one I
      am not as fond of, but I see how it is necessary nonetheless. It's
      how well you are able to get along in this crazy assinine world of
      ordinary people. We need a technical sounding name for it, so let's
      call it social success. Everyone here has probably read the old
      zen parable about the guy who went into a cave for many years and
      achieved perfect samadhi, but immediately lost it as soon as he left
      the cave and got jumped by a bunch of drunks. Apparently, the message
      is that how well you deal with conflict is just as big of an indicator
      of how well you are doing as is any samadhi absorption. So my
      equation would go something as follows: pure awareness + social
      success = enlightenment, to add my two cents to centuries of wisdom.
      Some people might rephrase this equation as: samadhi + prajna wisdom =
      enlightenment, whatever floats your boat. But my big problem is this
      question of stupid little everyday conflicts that interfere with any
      attainment of mental peace you might have. How can you possibly
      achieve anything spiritually if you have to live in this crazy world?
      How do you deal with conflict? Avoid it? Repress it? Run away from
      it? Deny it? Do nothing and hope that it blows over? Which of these
      two sister practices should a beginner such as myself focus on.
      Should I go find a nice cozy cave first, or should I try to grow up a
      little and acquire basic people skills first? Can I do both
      simultaneously? What if my current dharma has absolutely nothing to
      do with all of this spiritual junk? What if my lot in this
      incarnation is only to learn how to get my in this boring mundane life
      of dragging myself out of bed every day to face another dreary day?
      And to try to focus on higher spiritual things right now would be
      precisely the wrong thing for me to be doing? That is just an awful
      thought. If that is my current dharma, then I don't know if I can
      face that dharma. Oh well, I don't know how to conclude this little
      musing of mine so I'll conclude it abruptly. I will welcome any
      comments, complaints, gripes, criticisms that anyone would like to
      throw at me. Bye for now.
    • Era
      Hi Rich, ... I am not sure what do you mean by dharma to protect your integrity to protect your soul is your birth right as with raising children you know that
      Message 2 of 5 , Sep 30, 2003
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        Hi Rich,

        , "richmc2003" <rcarter@e...> wrote:
        > Okay, I'm up late at night and I'm having a mental conundrum and can't
        > sleep. I'm thinking about my career goals and how it relates to my
        > spiritual practice, and how my interpersonal conflicts relate to my
        > spiritual practice, and how all of this ties into my quest for
        > happiness. I was having a train of thought and I think I've come up
        > with a perfect plan of attack on the quest for...oh I don't
        > know...whatever the heck we're all questing for. I know I've got a
        > long way to go in my search for wisdom and I've seen that there are
        > people in this group who are certainly wiser than I. But regardless
        > of my deficiencies, I'm a seeker just like anyone else, so I don't see
        > the harm in throwing my two cents in just to see how other people
        > react. I know I'm still very self-centered but I am reaching out to
        > others which I guess is a good first step. Okay, so back to the main
        > point of this message. I was laying in bed..and I'm all wound up
        > because somebody in my immediate sphere of experience said something
        > to tick me off this evening. I won't go into any details because it's
        > not very important. I'll let the reader fill in the blank on that
        > one. But there I was in bed because of it, going through a big
        > introspective mental churning on the nature of conflict, happiness,
        > spiritual development, etc., like I said above. And that led to me
        > narrowing enlightenment down to an equation. I think now I've figured
        > out that there are two major components that go into the quest. Two
        > sister practices, if you will. Both equally important. One of these
        > practices is the thing that you do when you go hide in a cave in the
        > Himalayas to find your brain in the universe, and all that good stuff.
        > It sounds funny but this is just as important as anything else,
        > because here we're talking about pure awareness; the level of
        > mindfulness that you are able to bear upon your existence. Very
        > important stuff. But then there is the other practice, and this one I
        > am not as fond of, but I see how it is necessary nonetheless. It's
        > how well you are able to get along in this crazy assinine world of
        > ordinary people. We need a technical sounding name for it, so let's
        > call it social success. Everyone here has probably read the old
        > zen parable about the guy who went into a cave for many years and
        > achieved perfect samadhi, but immediately lost it as soon as he left
        > the cave and got jumped by a bunch of drunks. Apparently, the message
        > is that how well you deal with conflict is just as big of an indicator
        > of how well you are doing as is any samadhi absorption. So my
        > equation would go something as follows: pure awareness + social
        > success = enlightenment, to add my two cents to centuries of wisdom.
        > Some people might rephrase this equation as: samadhi + prajna wisdom =
        > enlightenment, whatever floats your boat. But my big problem is this
        > question of stupid little everyday conflicts that interfere with any
        > attainment of mental peace you might have. How can you possibly
        > achieve anything spiritually if you have to live in this crazy world?
        > How do you deal with conflict? Avoid it? Repress it? Run away from
        > it? Deny it? Do nothing and hope that it blows over? Which of these
        > two sister practices should a beginner such as myself focus on.
        > Should I go find a nice cozy cave first, or should I try to grow up a
        > little and acquire basic people skills first? Can I do both
        > simultaneously? What if my current dharma has absolutely nothing to
        > do with all of this spiritual junk?


        I am not sure what do you mean by dharma

        to protect your integrity to protect
        your soul is your birth right

        as with raising children you know that
        one has to wait until the surge of anger
        resides and than discipline

        otherwise you end up beating the kid
        into a pulp

        same with colleagues and spouse and
        every one

        wait and when NOT angry talk, deal
        with stuff and use a kind o 'force' what
        is called for and gets the job done

        I am having problems with patience,
        I negotiate 2 times and the next time
        I hit

        and as in todays political conflict eg. Palestine/Israel demonstrates, that
        one has to go back and force for a
        long long time with negotiation before
        hitting, because after the first blow
        peace is almost not possible




        > What if my lot in this
        > incarnation is only to learn how to get my in this boring mundane life
        > of dragging myself out of bed every day to face another dreary day?
        > And to try to focus on higher spiritual things right now would be
        > precisely the wrong thing for me to be doing? That is just an awful
        > thought. If that is my current dharma, then I don't know if I can
        > face that dharma. Oh well, I don't know how to conclude this little
        > musing of mine so I'll conclude it abruptly. I will welcome any
        > comments, complaints, gripes, criticisms that anyone would like to
        > throw at me. Bye for now.


        Dharma is above all

        love, Karta
      • carolina112900
        ... can t ... regardless ... see ... to ... main ... something ... it s ... figured ... Two ... these ... the ... stuff. ... one I ... let s ... left ...
        Message 3 of 5 , Sep 30, 2003
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          --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "richmc2003"
          <rcarter@e...> wrote:
          > Okay, I'm up late at night and I'm having a mental conundrum and
          can't
          > sleep. I'm thinking about my career goals and how it relates to my
          > spiritual practice, and how my interpersonal conflicts relate to my
          > spiritual practice, and how all of this ties into my quest for
          > happiness. I was having a train of thought and I think I've come up
          > with a perfect plan of attack on the quest for...oh I don't
          > know...whatever the heck we're all questing for. I know I've got a
          > long way to go in my search for wisdom and I've seen that there are
          > people in this group who are certainly wiser than I. But
          regardless
          > of my deficiencies, I'm a seeker just like anyone else, so I don't
          see
          > the harm in throwing my two cents in just to see how other people
          > react. I know I'm still very self-centered but I am reaching out
          to
          > others which I guess is a good first step. Okay, so back to the
          main
          > point of this message. I was laying in bed..and I'm all wound up
          > because somebody in my immediate sphere of experience said
          something
          > to tick me off this evening. I won't go into any details because
          it's
          > not very important. I'll let the reader fill in the blank on that
          > one. But there I was in bed because of it, going through a big
          > introspective mental churning on the nature of conflict, happiness,
          > spiritual development, etc., like I said above. And that led to me
          > narrowing enlightenment down to an equation. I think now I've
          figured
          > out that there are two major components that go into the quest.
          Two
          > sister practices, if you will. Both equally important. One of
          these
          > practices is the thing that you do when you go hide in a cave in
          the
          > Himalayas to find your brain in the universe, and all that good
          stuff.
          > It sounds funny but this is just as important as anything else,
          > because here we're talking about pure awareness; the level of
          > mindfulness that you are able to bear upon your existence. Very
          > important stuff. But then there is the other practice, and this
          one I
          > am not as fond of, but I see how it is necessary nonetheless. It's
          > how well you are able to get along in this crazy assinine world of
          > ordinary people. We need a technical sounding name for it, so
          let's
          > call it social success. Everyone here has probably read the old
          > zen parable about the guy who went into a cave for many years and
          > achieved perfect samadhi, but immediately lost it as soon as he
          left
          > the cave and got jumped by a bunch of drunks. Apparently, the
          message
          > is that how well you deal with conflict is just as big of an
          indicator
          > of how well you are doing as is any samadhi absorption. So my
          > equation would go something as follows: pure awareness + social
          > success = enlightenment, to add my two cents to centuries of
          wisdom.
          > Some people might rephrase this equation as: samadhi + prajna
          wisdom =
          > enlightenment, whatever floats your boat. But my big problem is
          this
          > question of stupid little everyday conflicts that interfere with
          any
          > attainment of mental peace you might have. How can you possibly
          > achieve anything spiritually if you have to live in this crazy
          world?
          > How do you deal with conflict? Avoid it? Repress it? Run away
          from
          > it? Deny it? Do nothing and hope that it blows over? Which of
          these
          > two sister practices should a beginner such as myself focus on.
          > Should I go find a nice cozy cave first, or should I try to grow up
          a
          > little and acquire basic people skills first? Can I do both
          > simultaneously? What if my current dharma has absolutely nothing
          to
          > do with all of this spiritual junk? What if my lot in this
          > incarnation is only to learn how to get my in this boring mundane
          life
          > of dragging myself out of bed every day to face another dreary
          day?
          > And to try to focus on higher spiritual things right now would be
          > precisely the wrong thing for me to be doing? That is just an
          awful
          > thought. If that is my current dharma, then I don't know if I can
          > face that dharma. Oh well, I don't know how to conclude this
          little
          > musing of mine so I'll conclude it abruptly. I will welcome any
          > comments, complaints, gripes, criticisms that anyone would like to
          > throw at me. Bye for now.

          Hi Rich,

          Thanks for sharing and welcome!

          I've heard another word for this 'social success'
          that you speak of, coined by psychologist
          Daniel Goleman, called 'emotional I.Q.'
          He has a number of books out about this.

          Speaking for myself, i do not find
          every day life mundane, because there
          are countless opportunites and an infinite
          number of responses available to different situations,
          or even to just what bubbles up in my mind and heart.
          This is different than manipulating my
          responses for some future goal/expectation,
          if i am truly not projecting into the future.

          As the awareness expands, more sensitivity
          and a greater range of response is available.

          How the awareness expands? Really all
          one can do is 'meditate on' an
          open heart and mind. (I put 'meditate on'
          in quotes, because i consider all of life,
          each moment, a meditation.)

          It doesn't seem necessary to worry so much about
          what one is
          'focusing' on, as you mention above,
          saying you don't know if you should
          be focusing on 'higher spiritual things'.
          I don't see it as necessary to make such distinctions
          between 'higher spiritual things' and regular things.

          I enjoyed reading what you wrote...
          hope you will share some more.

          cheers,

          Freyja
        • manjusrilotus
          ... richmc2003 wrote: (removed for space ) R: But my big problem is this question of stupid little everyday conflicts that interfere with
          Message 4 of 5 , Sep 30, 2003
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            --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com,
            "richmc2003" <rcarter@e...> wrote:

            (removed for space )

            R: But my big problem is this question of stupid little everyday
            conflicts that interfere with any attainment of mental peace you
            might have. How can you possibly achieve anything spiritually if
            you have to live in this crazy world?

            SG: by putting into practice a Living Sadhana (Spiritual
            Practices that are a Part of Life and not simply a ritualized
            gesture) ....... by Using Life as a sounding board and a way to
            Enhance your abiliity to put it into motion........

            R: > How do you deal with conflict?

            SG: by not becoming conflicted ....... by finding that still point
            within ...... by allowing the mind be in stillness rather than
            chasing and creating even bigger ripples .......

            R: Avoid it?

            SG: no it is not about aversion ..... you cannot avoid everything
            ..... but you simply do not chase it or cling to it or attempt to
            negate it .......... it comes ---- it is there for a moment ---- then it
            goes IF one does not continue to feed the flames.......

            R: Repress it?

            SG: no ....... then it builds up like a volcano ...... you are
            clinging and stewing then ....... rather See Beyond IT........ it is
            limited in scope and nature ........

            R: Run away from it?

            SG: in running you give it power ...... energy a hold over you.....
            stand and face it ......... see it ........ doesn't mean you have to Buy
            It......... just stand and see that it ONLY has the Power Over you
            that You Yourself are willing to Give It.........

            R: Deny it?

            SG: No ..... just see it for what it is ...... look to the Reality of
            the situation and don't color it ........ Don't cling to the Emotional
            Response ...... Look at Simply the action for what it is and allow
            it to disfuse..........


            R: Do nothing and hope that it blows over?

            SG: Don't chase it ..... don't magnify it ..... don't turn it into some
            self righteous crusade ....... don't turn it into a big poor me pity
            party......... look at it ......... see that it really isn't as big a deal
            as you are making it .......... see it is a transient happening and
            indeed will run out of steam if you don't keep throwing firewood
            on the situation......... it is a learning situation ...... a test ...... an
            opportunity being given to let go and overcome an inherant
            tendency ..........

            R: Which of these two sister practices should a beginner
            such as myself focus on.
            > Should I go find a nice cozy cave first, or should I try to grow up
            a little and acquire basic people skills first? Can I do both
            > simultaneously?

            SG: Get a good teacher ...... stay in communication with
            them ...... they will help you put into place some practices that
            will move you forward........ they may help you to see where you
            are stuck ....... you begin with one step at a time ........ do One
            thing at a time........ Learn to put into place Right Focus and let
            the rest go ..........

            R: What if my current dharma has absolutely nothing to
            > do with all of this spiritual junk?

            SG: what is junk ? maybe it's the attitude towards it that is
            junk ....... spirituality is LIFE ...... LIFE IS spirituality ...... it is
            inherantly seen as either something precious and a gift or as
            something to be trudged through .......
            how can you say you have dharma which is right living and
            right understanding and right action without a spiritual mindset
            which is the basis for all Reality and Truth ? so is Reality and
            Truth junk ? or is it simply that you want to chase the mundane
            externals ?


            R: What if my lot in this incarnation is only to learn how to get
            my in this boring mundane life of dragging myself out of bed
            every day to face another dreary day?

            SG: Who's choice is it ? no one but Yours..... this is called
            free will......... you can choose the mentation which negates
            truth - beauty - harmony ( and this doesn't mean that one is
            chasing fantasy and powderpuffs.....) it means simply that
            even when the ground is being tilled and the hard times come
            they are still within the harmonious unfolding ........ the state of
            mind is cultivated ........ one is either open and grows or shuts
            themselves off and remains stunted and stagnant........


            R: > And to try to focus on higher spiritual things right now
            would be precisely the wrong thing for me to be doing? That is
            just an awful thought.

            SG; IF that is an awful thought then indeed you are in This
            moment being handed an Opportunity to see it is time to open to
            Growth....... this desire is a Grace.......

            R: If that is my current dharma, then I don't know if I can
            > face that dharma.

            SG: Dharma is open to growth ....... Destiny is what you make
            it by the seeds you sow today .......... Procrastination is stagnant
            ...... Stagnancy and looking for the negatives simply draws one
            into this dark quagmire of mental ruminations that goes no
            where positive........ it is a choice to turn it around and not
            wallow in the self pity or drama of wants (neediness) or the other
            end of aversion ( pushing away everything in an attempt to keep
            your safety ) this is once again creating the very cage that you
            are attempting to escape...........


            R: Oh well, I don't know how to conclude this little musing of
            mine so I'll conclude it abruptly. I will welcome any
            > comments, complaints, gripes, criticisms that anyone would
            like to throw at me. Bye for now.

            SG: how about placing them at your feet as an offering rather
            than something to be thrown at you ........... it is your choice how
            you see it ......... i see it as an offering from the heart........
          • Onniko
            ... can t ... my ... my ... up ... a ... are ... regardless ... see ... to ... main ... something ... it s ... happiness, ... me ... figured ... Two ... these
            Message 5 of 5 , Sep 30, 2003
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              --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "richmc2003"
              <rcarter@e...> wrote:
              > Okay, I'm up late at night and I'm having a mental conundrum and
              can't
              > sleep. I'm thinking about my career goals and how it relates to
              my
              > spiritual practice, and how my interpersonal conflicts relate to
              my
              > spiritual practice, and how all of this ties into my quest for
              > happiness. I was having a train of thought and I think I've come
              up
              > with a perfect plan of attack on the quest for...oh I don't
              > know...whatever the heck we're all questing for. I know I've got
              a
              > long way to go in my search for wisdom and I've seen that there
              are
              > people in this group who are certainly wiser than I. But
              regardless
              > of my deficiencies, I'm a seeker just like anyone else, so I don't
              see
              > the harm in throwing my two cents in just to see how other people
              > react. I know I'm still very self-centered but I am reaching out
              to
              > others which I guess is a good first step. Okay, so back to the
              main
              > point of this message. I was laying in bed..and I'm all wound up
              > because somebody in my immediate sphere of experience said
              something
              > to tick me off this evening. I won't go into any details because
              it's
              > not very important. I'll let the reader fill in the blank on that
              > one. But there I was in bed because of it, going through a big
              > introspective mental churning on the nature of conflict,
              happiness,
              > spiritual development, etc., like I said above. And that led to
              me
              > narrowing enlightenment down to an equation. I think now I've
              figured
              > out that there are two major components that go into the quest.
              Two
              > sister practices, if you will. Both equally important. One of
              these
              > practices is the thing that you do when you go hide in a cave in
              the
              > Himalayas to find your brain in the universe, and all that good
              stuff.
              > It sounds funny but this is just as important as anything else,
              > because here we're talking about pure awareness; the level of
              > mindfulness that you are able to bear upon your existence. Very
              > important stuff. But then there is the other practice, and this
              one I
              > am not as fond of, but I see how it is necessary nonetheless.
              It's
              > how well you are able to get along in this crazy assinine world of
              > ordinary people. We need a technical sounding name for it, so
              let's
              > call it social success. Everyone here has probably read the old
              > zen parable about the guy who went into a cave for many years and
              > achieved perfect samadhi, but immediately lost it as soon as he
              left
              > the cave and got jumped by a bunch of drunks. Apparently, the
              message
              > is that how well you deal with conflict is just as big of an
              indicator
              > of how well you are doing as is any samadhi absorption. So my
              > equation would go something as follows: pure awareness + social
              > success = enlightenment, to add my two cents to centuries of
              wisdom.
              > Some people might rephrase this equation as: samadhi + prajna
              wisdom =
              > enlightenment, whatever floats your boat. But my big problem is
              this
              > question of stupid little everyday conflicts that interfere with
              any
              > attainment of mental peace you might have. How can you possibly
              > achieve anything spiritually if you have to live in this crazy
              world?
              > How do you deal with conflict? Avoid it? Repress it? Run away
              from
              > it? Deny it? Do nothing and hope that it blows over? Which of
              these
              > two sister practices should a beginner such as myself focus on.
              > Should I go find a nice cozy cave first, or should I try to grow
              up a
              > little and acquire basic people skills first? Can I do both
              > simultaneously? What if my current dharma has absolutely nothing
              to
              > do with all of this spiritual junk? What if my lot in this
              > incarnation is only to learn how to get my in this boring mundane
              life
              > of dragging myself out of bed every day to face another dreary
              day?
              > And to try to focus on higher spiritual things right now would be
              > precisely the wrong thing for me to be doing? That is just an
              awful
              > thought. If that is my current dharma, then I don't know if I can
              > face that dharma. Oh well, I don't know how to conclude this
              little
              > musing of mine so I'll conclude it abruptly. I will welcome any
              > comments, complaints, gripes, criticisms that anyone would like to
              > throw at me. Bye for now.

              I enjoyed reading that, Rich. Something you might find helpful when
              you go to bed at night with "stuff" still buzzing around is to
              actually look in a different part of your mental screen. You'll
              notice that when you're either talking in your head or daydreaming,
              your attention seems to be kind of blindly off and in and up one
              side. If you grab it and put it more to the front and just watch
              instead of generate what your mind does, you'll slow it right down.
              Just watching calmly is not so far from suspending it and in that,
              you'll feel your own spiritual presence and everything will be fine.
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