Sunday, November 1, 2020

The Subjective I

The subjective "I" seems universal to me. I have it, my wife has it, my dog has it. Donkeys have it. So, can this Maury expression claim "awareness" is just mine? In a sense, yes, because the expression is unique in its particulars. 

On the other hand, I sense the subjective awareness in others, unique, yes, but the same basic subjective sense of "I". For me, seeing that this sense appears universal, and I just arrived here with it, something else is responsible for it. I'm just living out this particular instance. Whatever is the origin and what to call it is another matter. 

I seem to have lost my sense of doership. It's a bit scary. There's much to be acknowledged as "unknown." But that's okay. It's seems rather peaceful to be done with having to perfect an ego. Not that I don't have a personal sense of "I", but it just seems rather insignificant. I just enjoy what is when I can, and suffer the slings and arrows when I can't.

Monday, October 19, 2020

Deep Relaxation

 We don't have to search for some big experience to prove to ourselves that we arrived somewhere. Coming to see our true nature may happen over time. The realization that "I know I know" just might be a simple "Aha moment." A deep relaxation may be your big realization.

The Absolute and Its Function

Awareness is the function of the Absolute. As objects are known they become conscious objects to awareness. Beingness is the felt presence of awareness experienced as I Amness.

Friday, October 16, 2020

Religion vs Spirituality

You ask, what is the difference between spirituality and religion? The difference is, spirituality can take from any religion, from all, or none. Religion is a particular package of beliefs. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Liberation Is A Dead End

For me, time is simply the recognition of change. Change happens. Measuring it is time. We measure time as in the sun rising and setting. We put that change on a watch and call it twenty-four hours. We only know the time has changed because the hand moves.
To me enlightenment is not being in a state of bliss or happiness. There is no need to chase bliss. Being here is okay. It's enough. The character is still here, but something is watching it. And the character knows it is that awareness, and not the character. Liberation is like a dead end. It doesn't need to go anywhere. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Doing the Absolute

Once I realized "I am That;" in essence The Absolute, I realized that my life was full of meaning, whether I understood it or not. It is doing what it is doing, and I am part of that doing. So, I can just live my life relaxed in a known unknown.

Friday, August 14, 2020

Truth and Theology

We have truth, and then we have theology. Big difference. A theology can point to truth or not. Most of it is bullshit. I come from a long line of Christian ministers, theologians and seminary presidents. I know the prejudices of theology. 

I have nothing against the intellect. It is a useful tool. But when theology is based on false assumptions, all the intellectual endeavor after that failure is nonsense. That is why the mystics say "We have to become as children."It seems to me that the intellect has to confirm the heart, or intuition, not try to get the heart to conform to the intellect. This is why most theology goes off track, becomes useless and dry. The mystics of all religions kick off the dregs of tradition and get to the heart of it. Most theologians are trying to fit the heart into a system they've adopted. Therefore most of it is not helpful.

You can feel the overly intellectual and convoluted justifications in most theology. Compare theology to Meister Eckhart, J. Krishnamurti, or Christ. They spoke simply. There is more subtlety in their simple words than theology's convoluted complexity.

It is fruitless to try and explain the mystic sensibility to academy. They are two different worlds. You will be frustrated your whole life trying to make headway in their world. They will never understand the mystic.

What is the place of the heart and intuition in relationship to the intellect? I gave up on graduate school in the education department because of the intellectualism. Kids will get educated if they are loved, not because of the correct educational theory. Same difference when it comes to truth and religion, truth and theology.

"Truth is something so noble that if God could turn aside from it, I could keep the truth and let God go."  ~ Meister Eckhart: A Modern Translation (1941) by Raymond Bernard Blakney, p. 240

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

I Is Presence

There is one ultimate "I", the subject. That I-ness is borrowed by every form of life from the microbe to the human being. The sense of presence is the "I". Whatever form or identity you take, that "I" is always the same, though it is filtered through the form it embodies.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Arriving Unannounced

My "being created" is just the simple fact that I didn't create this body or mind. It is obviously the product of some creative process that this human being had nothing to do with. I arrived here unannounced even to myself. Had to discover what the hell was going on.

Obviously, from the body perspective, it's a setup. Experiences happen a certain way because of how the form is made. When I look honestly at my humanness, not of my making, I can't even find free will. Sure, I feel like I make choices, but I don't see freedom in them.

The only freedom I have is that I also know that the essence of who I am has to be that which created me. Like the Bible says, we are created in the image of God. Yep. We are that. And if we take that on, we are totally fee. And then, beyond that, there is nothing to oppose The Absolute, so where is there bondage or freedom. It's just this, as it is, without anything to judge.

The Void

Someone asked me how my experience compared to Bernadette Roberts experience. This was regarding her book "The Experience of No Self. 
Below is my answer.

===============================================

I didn't read Bernadette Roberts till about 10 years ago, so I had already gone through hell years before. I lost all my so-called Christian beliefs suddenly when I went to college. It was hell because every reference point and meaning left overnight. It's hell because the void has no reference point and therefore no way out. This makes it feel eternal. I've heard the void described as blissful, but that was not my experience. 

The only thing I had was common sense, which told me that what I was feeling could not be the final answer, as no one would want to live like this, suicide would be the best answer, and if this was correct, the human race would extinguish itself. So I went about trying to make a life worth living. Not easy with no reference point. It took a long time. 

Since I could not live in a meaningless void I went looking for meaning. It took many years. Atheist for years, then agnostic, and then to a spiritual understanding of God. God had to be there because I was a created being. It just had to be a new God, a different God, or we could say, a new understanding. 

Roberts did the same thing. I was a little disappointed with her because in the end, she clung to some of her classic Christian tradition, such as the Trinity. In the end she couldn't let go of everything, even if it was only an empty shell. 

I totally agree with her that if you are feeling a sense of unity, then there must be a separation that feels unified. There is a step beyond that. There can't be any separation when "You are That." You know you are in essence That, while at the same time expressing That as the relative human appearance. It gives you the freedom to be the person you are, warts and all. 

Being a human is God's problem, not yours. On the other hand, knowing the essence of yourself as That, what harm would you want to do? 

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Where Do Principles Come From?

Some still claim that consciousness arises from the brain. If that's the case, where do the principles of mathematics lie? Are those principles created by the brain, or are they discoveries that some of us discern? For thousands of years these principles were not known, or little known. 

Does quantum physics come out of our brain from a new combination of neurons? Or does it seem more logical that the principles of mathematics and quantum physics have always existed? These types of principles seem to be behind the principles of matter and determine how physics operates. It defies logic to believe they came out of matter, or came out of a brain, millions of years after the big bang. 

It makes sense that these principles existed prior to matter, and that they underlay matter, and are the principles that determine how matter operates, and how the neurons of a brain operate. 

What exists first, the principle of music, or the creator of music. Does the composer create the principles of music, or does he come to know them, understand them, and then create with them? 

The consideration of these examples, surely points to the fact that these principles existed prior to matter, prior to neurons and brains. Only consciousness perceives these principles, and it is obvious that these principles were prior to the creation which makes use of them. 

How long will it take for science to let go of the prejudice that neurons create consciousness? Brains and neurons are more like radio receivers that filter out static and tune in to consciousness. Better radios get better signals, and subtler brains grasp deeper concepts. But everything the brain discovers comes from somewhere else, beyond matter, beyond time and space. 

The Absolute and its principles are prior to anything our brains discover. The whole universe is nothing but an appearance in awareness, the function of the Absolute experiencing itself. 

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Time

Time is the measurement of change. Without change, time would not exist. 

If there is a time of the year when you have no schedule and one day seems like the last, time seems to slow, or as we say, drag. The only measurement may be that the sun went up and came down, or that there was a change in the weather. 

When the sages say that the Absolute is changeless, they are pointing out that the Absolute is outside of time. This is why the identity shift of a realized person gives them the knowledge that they are eternal. This is why they can say, "I was never born, and therefore cannot die." They become the measure, not the measured. 

All form changes, be it matter, thoughts or feelings. Awareness sees the changes because itSelf is changeless. 

To know oneself as awareness is be outside of time, to be deathless, to be the observer, the subject of all that is. 

Monday, June 29, 2020

Experience and Understanding

Spiritual experiences are like data, or information, but without deep inquiry and contemplation there is no knowledge or understanding. "Spiritual experiences are not trophies," ~Anne Sweet. Settling for a bunch of experiences, is close to being a pin up poster. We must go beyond experience and extract the meaning, the truth of our being, and all it's implications. We study till we become our own authority. Freedom is when we can leave the teachers behind. 

We were given a heart and a mind. Spiritual people tend to denigrate one or the other, but both need to be satisfied. Wisdom does not arrive with an experience or two. The mind has it's part to play, even the part where it knows its limits. When the mind and heart are both satisfied, the personality can relax into Being. 

Of course, actualization, embodiment, walking the understanding, is a continuing story. 

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Born In The Tiger's Mouth

I was born with my head "in the tiger's mouth." From early childhood what passed for truth and satisfied most people, did not satisfy me. A deep soul itch craved an answer. Raised in the Christian tradition, I could not buy the theology. So the search was on. The Christian mystics, on the other hand, seemed to have a deeper understanding of God, and it was not confined to the standard accepted theology. 

In reading the Upanishads, the Indian sages seemed so Christlike, but their interpretation of God seemed much more scientific, abstract, and not based on belief. This discovery was profound for me, and touched that deeper part of my soul seeking satisfaction. From J. Krishnamurti, to Aurobindo, to Ramana, and Nisargadatta, I devoured it all. Compared to the Eastern sages, only the Christian and Muslim mystics seemed to be at a level that salved the itch. 

Knowledge is power. Experience was not enough for me, although ecstatic and profound experiences did occur. Extracting the understanding from those experiences is what I call 'realization.' Intuition drove me, but the intellect was not satisfied until there was understanding underpinned with the mystical experiences that felt more real than anything else I had experienced. 
 
All of the above is to try and explain how there seemed to be 'no choice.' I was born with a search already intact. It drove me to explore and risk my sanity to know a deeper truth. I don't feel there was choice in that matter. Since I had read so many mystics and sages, I was well prepared for any leaps that needed to be taken. I already knew that any leap would be unsettling, even making me question my own sanity. This knowledge was such that when it came time to let go and just be That, it did not feel like any choice at all. It was what needed to be done. A lifetime had pointed to this. The leap was obvious, and from my point of view, rational. 

It is paradoxical. Just as it takes one to know one, the sages seem to speak from a different domain. And they are. The point of view of the Self has a viewpoint beyond the personal. I personally do not feel we have free will. But as soon as you take on the identity of Self, there is only complete freedom, beyond the concepts of free will. 

My choice was not seen in 'retrospect.' A trajectory was there from birth. Any choice was beside the point. It was not a personal choice. It has to be the will of God or it would not happen to anyone. When the truth that I am awareness itself was seen, what choice was there? It was just a fact to be accepted. If it was personal, why would they call it grace? 


Tuesday, June 16, 2020

The Path To Silence

The silence so often spoken of by sages is not something that can be forced, or practiced. It is the natural result of dropping into pure awareness. Both the Jnani and the Bhakti can come to this natural silence. It's not a matter of a particular religion, but does result from the pursuit of truth or unconditional love.

The silence arrives on its own without effort. Yet effort is required in one's search for truth or unconditional love. Since all religions are a path to truth and love, it matters not which one conditioned you. Just go deeper. Trust your intuition, and pursue these two until your heart and mind are satisfied. Then you will know the silence. 

Saturday, May 9, 2020

You Are The Knower

In the game hide and seek, the players are known, but they hide from each other. Only in hiding can the game be played. The absolute does the same thing. Without hiding itself, there is no game to play (Lila) and no discoveries to be made. So the formless manifests in form and the observer becomes the observed.

So the limitless becomes the limited by creating form. Without the hidden, the limited, there is no game. Form and limitation were needed for there to be space time. Without form only the absolute is.

The truest spirituality is discovery. Even creativity is a discovery process. Discovery can only be non dogmatic, otherwise the game is over. No answer can diminish the infinite.

Paradox is a big part of the play (Lila). We are an apparent person, yet in essence Self. Apparently separate, but in essence one. It seems we can say in all humility "I am Brahman," because to know this, negates our egoic superiority as an individual.

We can find peace and the end of seeking in knowing I am That. But that does not end our curiosity or love of exploration and discovery. You can know you are the knower, and yet not know everything.

Thursday, May 7, 2020

A Simple Love Song

Seems like songs are mostly about love. Love found. Love lost. Come back. Get lost. It's a yo yo, a roller coaster ride. Nothing ever stays the same.

Except, one thing. Awareness.

Behind all the scenes, the ups and downs, the constant is awareness. The mountains, the valleys, the skies and the ocean, where do they appear? In the constant shinning light of awareness.

The love of awareness is constant. Whatever appears is loved. No judgment follows. No guilt in awareness. It sees what it sees; that's all.

There is no other to awareness, so where could loneliness arise? Only in ignorance, the sages say. A simple mistake corrected by a simple realization. You are not an object, a human, a person, but awareness itself. Simple knowledge.

Awareness is all there is. How could you be separate? A simple knowledge so hard to realize. You are knocking from the inside, said Rumi. A perfect metaphor. 

Friday, May 1, 2020

Hate The Sin But Not The Sinner

For all the teachings about about not judging and not hating there are just as many that say don't sin, and don't cast pearls before swine, hate the sin but not the sinner. Discernment is a cherished method of realization and that is a judgment function. These statements about not judging are better understood if you use the phrase "don't condemn." A realized person would see a wrong, (therefore a judgment), yet not condemn the sinner, (love him anyway). Discernment is absolutely necessary. Making judgments is necessary. But It is not necessary to hate the sinner. Realization is seeing the innocence of the sinner. On realization one sees all as equal; one essence. The realized make judgments. They just don't condemn. Nisargadatta says, "The sinner and saint are just exchanging notes." Discernment but no condemnation. The final realization is that I don't condemn myself either. No matter what I've done, I'm as innocent as a flower. I am love itself. There is no separation between me and That.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Discover Awareness

Have you discovered that you are not a who, but a what. I am, you will find out, is pure awareness without content. Obviously not a person.

The reason we can ask "Who am I?" is because at some fundamental level we know that our essence is not a person. But, you will notice, the person does have a relationship with the I am. The two are one with apparent separation. What a wonderful trip.

Discover The Truth

Meaning is like the discoveries in science. We don't create meaning, we discover it. The truth was present before you were born and will be there after you're gone. So just relax, fall into yourself and see what's there.

So much goal orientation is mental gymnastics, orchestrated to make the ego feel like it's got somewhere to go. The truth is already here, present and accounted for. Let go and drop into it. It has only to to be discovered.