Unity vs Duality

Early on, silence and expression can seem opposed. For example, in a meditation practice, we may seek Yoga. Yoga Sutra 1 v2-3: Yoga is the complete settling of the activity of the mind. Then the observer is established in their own nature. Seeking a silent mind, we may rail against the mind’s constant expression. And yet that railing is the mind wanting to control. Or as Yoga puts it, aversion that leads to suffering rather than liberation. In an effortless practice, we allow the mind to do its thing – partly because the practice causes the physiology to settle and … Continue Reading…

The Void

The ancients talked of fundamental elements whose combination lead to the forms and phenomena we see around us. For example, fire element brings light, sight, colour, heat, and so forth. The elements have associations with the senses, the chakras, and the doshas (body types) of Ayurveda. We can also associate them with the valence groups of chemistry. Deepest of the 5 elements is space or ether. Space is more a container than a substance. And yet space behaves like a medium, hence the name ether. We see a similar idea in physics where space-time is modeled as a flexible sheet. … Continue Reading…

Silence is the Basis of…

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I’m not much of a poet, but occasionally verses show up. Over a decade ago, I posted this short poem that arose in 1977. Silence Silence is the basis of all existence Complete, Perfect, Absolute. To let yourself go, absolutely, completely, To be silent throughout your whole self, being, existence, Is to be Perfection, Complete, Fulfilled. I’d been witnessing for a while then and the silence was often very loud. This is a very Shiva orientation, common to transcendence and awakening. The completion mentioned is a completion unto itself. This is a profound experience, but it’s not actually complete. That … Continue Reading…

Karma Collecting

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To feel in control and secure, we identify with experiences of what is here. I experience through this body-mind so it is me. This is my job. These are my possessions. These are my friends, partner, etc. This expands into stories for the mind that support the agenda. This identification emphasizes two qualities: inertia and sustaining. These maintain the experience as it is, even when life is changing. Yet the only constant in the world is change. Things are always changing, dissolving, and growing. When we resist change, we experience pain. Pain is a signal something is wrong. And yet … Continue Reading…

The Paradox of Unity and Spiritual Autonomy

Adya @ SAND17

Adyashanti gave an excellent talk @ SAND17 called The Paradox of Unity and Spiritual Autonomy. I heard this live. A friend sent me the link as it’s now on-line. In the first part, he goes over the early stages of enlightenment (head, heart, gut) and the importance of the awakening heart. He then uses this as the platform to talk about how our old drivers fall away with awakening. How it’s important to go deeper and open the heart so higher drivers can come on-line. Then he talks about some of the paradoxes of Unity – how we can be … Continue Reading…

Styles of Teachers

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“Spiritual teacher” is a generic term used to describe many types of offerings. It’s useful to be clearer on the differences so you understand what’s there. As usual, I base this on my own observations. Some who use the term are not “spiritual” per se. They teach energy work, healing, concepts, and other modalities related to more subtle but not-yet-spiritual levels. Perhaps they consider themselves spiritual in orientation but even that can be muddy. To me, spiritual means related to source, consciousness, being, and enlightenment. Let’s explore a few related Sanskrit terms first. Guru: many people equate “spiritual teacher” with … Continue Reading…

We Are A Community

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In the west, our culture has been very focused on individuality. This is a step up from tribal mode but, like being a teenager, should be seen as a transitional step. We live in a very interdependent community we often take for granted. But our homes, food, roads, cars, water, power, everything has to be planned, made or grown, distributed and made available to us. It all has to be maintained too. Any yet many people live separate lives, disconnected from those around them. Connecting to a community can be very enriching although it can take time to find the … Continue Reading…

Wanting Something Else

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When we don’t know who we are, it’s natural to chase things outside of ourselves. The senses tell us satisfaction comes from the world around us so we follow the senses and chase experiences. But nothing they bring us ever lasts. Real satisfaction comes from stepping into the qualities of our deeper nature. We can have tastes of eternal qualities like love, peace, and happiness, but until we awaken there isn’t the stable platform for them to become ongoing. When their presence becomes ongoing, it addresses deep unmet needs, even those we may not be conscious of. This helps heal … Continue Reading…

Simplicity

The most potent things in life are very simple. Love, happiness, peace, sleep. But the mind likes to grasp and control things. Simplicity confounds it. Yet simplicity is a marker of universal principles. Karma or action would be a good example. The rules of action are very simple. For example, for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. The energy of nature is always seeking a balance of forces. Balance keeps the world sustained. But in its expression, karma is complex beyond imagining. Unfathomable, as the Bhagavad Gita puts it. Simplicity is also the hallmark of the most … Continue Reading…

The Power of Speech

The spoken word is sounds that represent conceptual symbols that have a somewhat shared meaning. For example, if I speak the word “apple”, you’ll have a good idea of what I’m referring to but not a lot of detail. While misunderstanding is common, the spoken word remains an effective way to communicate between two people who experience themselves as separate. The written word, like this article, uses letters to symbolize sounds that symbolize meaning. Some languages use word symbols instead of sound symbols, like Chinese. But either is another step removed and thus a little less powerful. In a sense, … Continue Reading…

Enlightenment is Not Knowledge

Enlightenment is not knowledge for the mind nor will it make you knowledgeable. Enlightenment is a progressive series of shifts in being, in who we are and our relationship with the world. In my case, I was born with a knowledge orientation into a family of teachers. Deeper knowledge has been unfolding since my late teens, long before I woke up. For a while, this mystified me as it seemed unrelated to my life. We could say the training had to start well before the function. (laughs) Awakening has considerably enhanced those gifts. But I can guarantee it will be … Continue Reading…

The Stages in Context

Watching a friend approach a stage shift, it reminded me of something that may not be obvious to observers. Each of the primary stages is an exponential shift from what was before. With the first shift, commonly called Self Realization or Cosmic Consciousness, we shift from being a local me to being cosmic in consciousness. The observer has woken to itself. This is a big shift even if it’s subtle. There is typically a brief moment of letting go that detaches us from the ego. We retain a sense of localness but as a focus rather than a sense of … Continue Reading…