Nested Dharma, Nested Karma

Nest by Furtwangl

Down on the level of Buddhi, the intellect and intuition, the interactions of the fine devata create relationships. These structure the subtle or sacred geometry that defines the forms of our world. These subtle structures are composed of sutras or threads of light. We can describe them as structured flows of light, feeling, and sound. Those fine threads are sustained by tubes, like insulation on a wire. Flowing attention curves back on itself in a spiral down the thread, creating a tube. These tubes are embodied as subtle life-forms known as nagas. These are ancient and benevolent beings, quite different … Continue Reading…

The Inner Child

Felicia dancing, Maracas fishing village, Trinidad

After we wake up, we become conscious of remaining shadows more quickly. Often we’ll uncover challenges around fear, anger, and a wide assortment of contractions from unresolved experiences. In time, we’ll find they get more primitive and, to the intellect, less defined. The key is noticing reactivity and following it back to its roots to make it conscious. Then it can be resolved. Making it conscious is sometimes the last step in healing. The challenge is in facing our ghosts. If we adopt an attitude of being beyond such things or suppress what doesn’t feel “spiritual,” we will not heal … Continue Reading…

It’s Not About You

monumental eclipse

One of the most important lessons of the spiritual journey is letting go of the habit of making it about you, of taking life personally, of thinking what happens is about how it affects you. When we’re identified with our ego or sense of personal me, this taking everything personally is natural. That is how we’re experiencing the world. The ego tries to maintain an illusion of personal control and thus takes everything as mine and about me. Curiously, the ego know it’s faking it but wants to keep this secret from us to feel in charge. It’s another little … Continue Reading…

The Power of Belief

Gods grace

Bruce Lipton wrote a book some years ago called The Biology of Belief. He describes how our beliefs influence our physiology, including gene expression. This came out of early research on epigenetics (gene expression). We can describe beliefs as mental structures. They’re a framework on which we hang our stories about the world. The mind likes to have explanations for whatever happens so it can feel comfortable and in control. But how well do these stories and beliefs serve us? We receive a massive amount of information through our senses. Our stories and beliefs become part of a pre-filter to … Continue Reading…

Discrimination

Choices

Discrimination is a curious word. It means the act of distinguishing or making fine distinctions; discernment. But we often use it today to mean treatment based on category rather than merit; for example racial discrimination. I view the latter as ego-driven judgment that separates self and other. This is not discernment. Rick Archer wrote an article on ethics & spiritual teachers as an introduction to his panel at the Science and Nonduality conference this fall. He highlights the importance of discrimination on the spiritual path: in our choice of teachers, in what we accept as truth, in how we live … Continue Reading…

The Origin of the Senses, Part 1

Part 1 This article started from a simple question on the blog but things have deepened since I last explored the topic. First, by senses, I mean our abilities to experience qualities in and around us. We have physical sense organs for sensing physical qualities like the visible spectrum. But our ability to sense and experience is not at all limited to those organs. We have more subtle mechanisms for subtler levels all the way down to and including consciousness itself. Sensing is built in to the nature of reality. The world is created to be experienced and we’re here … Continue Reading…

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…

How Many Brains?

In some ways, the whole body can be seen as a “brain” in the sense that the brain is an interface with mind and consciousness. However, there are certain centers that are more focused as a nerve plexus. We could say they’re more connected. We usually think of the brain as being in the head between our ears but recent research has discovered other major centers of nerve concentration that have other specializations. The brain between the ears is composed of about 100 billion neurons. It behaves as the central processor, the place where most of our sensing is interfaced … Continue Reading…

The Importance of Actual Yoga

In Yoga, the key is settling the mind. Then the Self “behind” the noisy mind can shine through. 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. This state of quiet mind or yoga is known by many names like Samadhi, transcendence, or Turiya. Many techniques today try to force or control the mind to settle. But as this is not arising naturally, it is difficult to achieve. When it happens, a rare clear transcending may be seen as an awakening. But real Self Realization … Continue Reading…

Our Drivers

Becoming self-aware and learning to recognize where we have work to do can be a difficult process. But the difficulty is only in the complexity and the discomfort of seeing our shadows. It also requires a degree of letting go of control and protective stories. The complexity arises partly because we’re built in layers so there’s layers to what moves us. And partly because many dynamics are layered in themselves. For example, we have unresolved trauma from a nasty experience in our childhood. We didn’t have good skills for healing so we learned to suppress it instead. When experiences remind … Continue Reading…

Awakening The Body

As I wrote about back on Melting the Body, the process of purification and clarity moves from our becoming a good reflector of consciousness into the mind, senses, emotions, then physical body. Enlightenment is just the beginning. As that awakening becomes more embodied, the laws of nature that create the appearance of this physical form are also awakened. They then shift from having a fixed, rigid role to becoming more fluid. Apparently, Sri Aurobindo spoke of waking the bodies cells. I suspect he was referring to the same thing. While they still sustain this body, those devata (laws of nature) … Continue Reading…

Listening to Someone Awake

After someone awakens, they begin to notice the difference between speaking from the mind and speaking from deeper within. Sometimes we notice silence speaking through us, perhaps saying things we didn’t know personally. Of course, I’m not talking about channeling. I’m talking about our universal higher Self moving through us. I’ve written about the 4 levels of speech. We’ve all met people who just talk reactively and mindlessly. And many people speak from the mind. In that case, everything is about concepts and polarities of right and wrong, good and bad, and so forth. But if we can step back … Continue Reading…