Two Kinds of Resistance

As Yoga describes, there are two basic kinds of resistance to what is.

The first is Grasping. This is trying to hold on to what passes through our lives. We try to hold on to passing experiences, perceptions, possessions (good word), memories, and so forth. We try to keep things we like from changing. When this fails, we experience loss and grief.

Similarly, desires for future possessions can be a grasping at wants, often with an expectation of satisfaction that never lasts. (cue Rolling Stones)

Grasping at the past (memories) and grasping at the future … Continue Reading…

Fear of Flow

Stillness is needed for awakening. Not just the deep stillness we notice in meditation, but a stillness even in activity. When alertness and clarity of stillness are at a peak, seeing happens.

As Yoga (1v2-3) puts it:
Yoga is the complete settling of the activity of the mind
Then the observer is established in the Self [in its own nature]

Yet after the shift, if someone doesn’t understand the larger picture, they can cherish the peaceful stillness and try to hold onto it. This impedes further progress. You see people who have been awake for years … Continue Reading…

Polishing

Refined perception results from polishing the physiology on each level and increasing clarity.

I’ve spoken of how purification helps bring clarity and soma refines the structure of the body. But what causes polishing?

Daily experiences of life. Sometimes, the hardest experiences can burnish the most.

If we’re resisting those experiences, we create noise and sludge that hinder our ability to see. This impedes refined perception. But it doesn’t stop the polishing.

However, we won’t recognize the polishing until we clear those windows of perception.

We can call learning a polishing of the mental “body,” Emotions refine the emotional “body,” … Continue Reading…

The Kavach

Kavach is a Sanskrit word that means armor. It refers to protection from subtle negative influences. If you read about it on-line, you’ll find many references to a medallion or amulet with astrological symbols, numbers, or mantras chosen to protect the specific wearer.

However, what value does an engraved piece of metal have against anything subtle?

The texts prescribe that the item has to be properly “charged” by a person properly prepared. For example, they’re supposed to have a strong Jupiter and be spiritually developed. How do you verify that through an on-line store? It’s also worth noting the original … Continue Reading…

Trust vs Power

In considering the Trust article, it’s useful to distinguish between trust and power.

Brené defined trust as: “Choosing to make something important to you vulnerable to the actions of someone else.” More commonly it is defined as “Firm reliance on the integrity, ability, or character of a person or thing.”

Trust does Not mean giving away our power. Being vulnerable to sharing is not the same as giving our power to someone. Just because someone has earned our trust does not mean we should give them our power. If power is being usurped, there is boundary, accountability, and integrity issues … Continue Reading…

Emotional Pain

Most of us carry unresolved emotional pain, even if we’ve had fairly uneventful lives. Being born into our family’s unresolved pain will do the job. A child is designed to be wide-open and mirror their environment so they can be successful in it. We learn to walk and talk, but also pick up behaviors and energetic patterns. Soon after, our own past unresolved baggage comes on-line too.

As small children, the pain of adults and our own past can seem like an incomprehensible monster. We don’t have the skills or awareness to process it yet. Although unspoken, it roars away … Continue Reading…

On Trust

A reader sent me this excellent talk by Brené Brown on The Anatomy of Trust:

On YouTube

A few notes:
Trust is built in small moments – do you avert and betray or connect and build trust.
What is trust? Choosing to make something important to you vulnerable to the actions of someone else.
Distrust – what I have shared with you that is important to me is not safe with you.
Acronym “BRAVING” – when we trust we are braving connection with someone.
Continue Reading…

The Means of Liberation (Yogas)

Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 13
Verse 24
Some realize the Self by the Self in the Self through meditation, others through Samkhya yoga, yet others through Karma yoga.
 
Verse 25
Others, however, not knowing thus, sit near Me [Krishna], having heard from others, they also do cross beyond death, devoted to what they have heard.

This lays out the Yogas or paths to liberation.

The first is Dhyana Yoga, the path of meditation covered in Chapter 6 of the Gita. These days, it is often taught as Raja … Continue Reading…

The Soma Plant

Some old texts speak of rituals that “milk” the soma or they describe “flow soma through the filter” to create the nectar of the gods.

Much of this is gestures that symbolize the real process that takes place right in our body.

Samadhi happens, at first usually in meditation, when we go beyond the mind into pure consciousness. We settle into our true nature. This is often brief and foggy for a while. But at some point, we’ll have clear experiences of the process. We may also notice a wave of happiness when we cross in or out of … Continue Reading…

Healing Compensation

Dharma is that which sustains. This gives us a stable platform for life and growth. Life itself is about balance for similar reasons.

When something goes out of balance, the system will seek to restore it. If what is off doesn’t respond, then other things compensate. For example, if we have an injured foot, we’ll lean more on the other one. This will sometimes overtax the healthy side.

We also talk about compensatory behavior. We may have habitual psychological responses to some kinds of events. For example, a partner needing downtime may trigger our fear of abandonment. That … Continue Reading…

What is Silence?

When we settle into deep meditation or find ourselves deep in the forest, we may experience a moment of deep silence. Not just silence outside, but silence within, a quieting of the monkey mind. This is the goal of Yoga.

At first, inner silence may be pretty unclear, like a blank spot when nothing was noticed. Without content, it’s just empty.  

As that silence becomes more familiar, we’ll notice it has a sense of presence and of being. It Is. We may find that sometimes, as we settle into silence or come out after, there is a … Continue Reading…

Digesting Contraction

There’s a take on purification I realized I’d not covered. Unlike some psychological approaches, we don’t have to dig up every trauma and challenge we’ve ever faced to clear it’s impact. That would make it essentially endless.

The vast majority of our contractions can be handled by samadhi. By stepping deep into pure being, we get a rest deeper than sleep and gradually ground ourselves in presence. With the increased rest and peace, our layers can shed baggage as a matter of course.

We’ll also probably have more robust contractions that have been deeply reinforced or … Continue Reading…