Saturday, November 21, 2009

A Quiet Mind

At some point projections end -- most of them, anyway. When they end, peace seems to reign -- stories don't get created, and rumination ceases. It's rather delightful. Some call it peace of mind.

I always thought it silly to try and develop a quiet mind. Somehow, I always knew that a quiet mind, like happiness, was the result of something else -- a side effect.

That something else isn't realization, because, after realization, there is still considerable unraveling to do.

Basically, getting rid of projections is the journey. Projections are 99% based on conditioning. It's what your ego believes can happen, might happen, or will happen. Some of it may be true, most of it is just a nightmare dream-scape.

There isn't some sudden realization that will give you peace of mind, although it may help. Realization shows other possibilities, other options. But then there is still work to do.

Years ago, I could walk into a room, and looking at the people in the room, automatically start myriad, dysfunctional, internal conversations. These internal discussions were based on how each person looked, how old they were, how they stood, etc.

The conversations would go something like this: Well, she's tall and good looking, she must be haughty, spoiled, and hasn't had to think or struggle much. She gets what she wants because she just happens to look good. So I wouldn't like her and there is no point in approaching her.

And that guy there, with the plaid shirt and yellow shorts -- is a likely golfer, and therefore has money, and is probably very conservative. He and I wouldn't have much in common, and tying to talk to him would be pointless.

Well, you get the drift. These automatic conversations were not something under my conscious control, but they certainly were tied to my fears, and therefore ego based. And this over active conflagration tore at me like a dog chasing it's tail.

After much therapy, and a lot of work, those types of stories, just died. I didn't try and stop them, they stopped because the buried fears, assumptions, suppositions and positions, were dropped. The pain that sustained them was felt and released.

Basically, all my shit was sustained by pain I didn't know was there, or rather, was afraid to feel. Unconscious pain was the driving force of my neurosis, and it was unconscious and out of control because it was repressed. The projection of it distorted my whole world.

At one point, the disjointed universe of my projections caused so much pain, that I found it worthwhile to go looking for the real pain. The source being inside, not out there.

I found a good teacher, and I trusted that whatever I was forced to feel -- to acknowledge, I could handle. It wasn't easy, but the amount of pain uncovered was beyond belief.

The result of that work, and much personal inquiry, is a quiet mind. Now I live in the peace. Unwanted internal conversations don't happen. Only what I am looking at, or doing, is what is going on. There are no internal discussions about it. There is freedom. The silence is deafening, and wonderful.


No One In Particular said...

Our stories are remarkably similar. Peace isn't the goal...there is no goal...but it does seem to be a side effect.

Lots of thoughts and conversations come up, and every last one of them is appreciated, by...guess who?

Anonymous said...

What a neat insight into Maury! Thanks for letting us in. Something you wrote, "That something else isn't realization, because, after realization, there is still considerable unraveling to do.", is something I've been wondering about. I've heard that once you realize what you really are, that becomes the first step. The unraveling is next, the painful dismantling of the ego. Is that true in your case?

Maury Lee said...

Suzanne, Similar, I'm certain of that. I've had similar experiences, such as your perception of the knife. (You're tagged for life with that one!)

My depression and suicidal stuff was long ago. Don't know how I survived. And I could tell you a good one, like your knife thing, only it was while looking at my thumb. Only someone with a similar experience could understand.

And "appreciated, by...guess who?" Well, no One and me. Yes, yes, I know, there is only one, but it's here in this body, now, and the perception is experienced here.

Saw your interview on Conscious TV. Enjoyed it a lot. Refreshingly, not bound up non dual ideology.

Maury Lee said...

Msayers, always enjoy your comments. My wife liked it as well.

"Once you realize what you really are, that becomes the first step. The unraveling is next, the painful dismantling of the ego. Is that true in your case?

It's not that cut and dried. There is no straight line path. Unraveling of the ego happens before realization and after.

Childhood is the development and refinement of the ego. Positionalities are established. Any severe shock to the ego will crack it. Some patch it up, some start looking deeper and the search is on.

I did many years of therapy. I was willing to risk everything that I thought I was because the pain was too much, and without relief, suicide would have been a blessing.

I did tons of unraveling, and remember having conversations in which I explained that I felt like I was dying. But it wasn't a physical death. It was ego death.

I actually think that there are two ways of looking at ego death: one is that you dissolve into No One, the other way is that you expand into Everything.

The experience of ego death is one side, satori is the other. I've experienced both.

So, to answer your question, unraveling can happen before realization, and continues afterward.

Before realization, you think you are doing it. After realization, it's more of a choicelees unraveling.

Many have talked about the continued unraveling after realization. Satyam Nadeen describes it in "From Onions to Pearls." I think he called it "Deliverance."

Many non dual teachers don't like the idea of levels of consciousness. I do. Realization happens at a certain level, but that is not the end. Realization isn't static. One may stay at that level, but some keep going. Again, not so much their choice, but an allowing for further, deeper realization.

In many of the Zen schools, they tell a realized student to keep his mouth shut for 10 years after realization. Perhaps it's to grow into what is seen, sort of like dropping the pieces still hanging around.

The personality doesn't go away. It is often more freed up to be its spontaneous self. It's just that it's known not to be who you are.

You become a tool of Source. "Thy will, not mine," becomes a truism. And that can have more and more depth over time, even in a realized person.

I hope this answers your question.

No One In Particular said...

There may seem to be a process, with lots of levels and variety of states that can be labeled...whatever, and the mind is absolutely determined to group and categorise and organise and have it all make perfect sense. And all that's a lot of fun to do. Yet it doesn't matter in the least. Just life. Which is what is always being done in the first, last, in-between, and timeless "place".

And thanks Maury, I avoid most non-dual jargon by not reading anything but Zena Henderson at the moment!

No One In Particular said...

And by the way...the "knife incident" wasn't some static, one-off "experience"...everything is the knife, now.

Anonymous said...

wonderful post, thank you Maury.

Something rings very true x