The Power of Now
Present moment experience is physical and body-based, not intellectual or theoretical. The great wisdom dwells in your body, fully away from all thoughts. Given the many words on this website and the many books that are written about present moment experience and how to get there, you may begin to think that you can get there from here.
The sound of rain needs no translation.
"All philosophies are mental fabrications. There has never been a single doctrine by which one could enter the true essence of things."
Reflection Upon Time
“Anxiety, furthermore, always involves a reflection upon time, for I cannot be anxious about the present, only about the past or the future; but the past and the future, holding on to each other so tightly that the present vanishes."
― Søren Kierkegaard
“I have frequently seen people become neurotic when they content themselves with inadequate or wrong answers to the questions of life. They seek position, marriage, reputation, outward success of money, and remain unhappy and neurotic even when they have attained what they were seeking. Such people are usually confined within too narrow a spiritual horizon. Their life has not sufficient content, sufficient meaning. If they are enabled to develop into more spacious personalities, the neurosis generally disappears.”
― C.G. Jung
Whole Body, Embodied, Mind Full Walking
“Above all, do not lose your desire to walk. Everyday, I walk myself into a state of well-being & walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it. But by sitting still, and the more one sits still, the closer one comes to feeling ill. Thus if one just keeps on walking, everything will be all right.”
― Søren Kierkegaard
.."I want to make one thing absolutely clear. I am not a Zen Buddhist, I am not advocating Zen Buddhism, I am not trying to convert anyone to it. I have nothing to sell. I'm an entertainer. That is to say, in the same sense, that when you go to a concert and you listen to someone play Mozart, he has nothing to sell except the sound of the music. He doesn’t want to convert you to anything. He doesn’t want you to join an organization in favor of Mozart's music as opposed to, say, Beethoven's. And I approach you in the same spirit as a musician with his piano or a violinist with his violin. I just want you to enjoy a point of view that I enjoy."
- Alan Watts
The major adventure is to claim your authentic, true being, which is not culturally given to you. The culture will not explain to you how to be a real human being. It will tell you how to be banker, politician, Indian chief, masseuses, actress, whatever, but it will not give you true being.
- Terence McKenna
We do not escape into philosophy, psychology, and art---We go there to restore our shattered selves into whole ones.
The role of the artist is exactly the same as the role of the lover. If I love you, I have to make you conscious of the things you don't see.
- James Baldwin
Taking a walk I saw a wildflower.
Not knowing its name I saw its beauty only.
- Ok-Koo Kang Grosjean
Refers to having an attitude of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject, even when studying at an advanced level, just as a beginner would.
"As soon as you see something, you already start to intellectualize it. As soon as you intellectualize something, it is no longer what you saw."
– Shunryu Suzuki
Take What You Need and Leave the Rest
A teacher is never a giver of truth; he/she is a guide, a pointer to the truth that each student must find for him/herself.
The word guru in Sanskrit means "the one who points."
Truth, Reality, is Not a Religion
No "Point of View"
Dispeller of Darkness
The syllable gu means darkness, the syllable ru, he who dispels them, Because of the power to dispel darkness, the guru is thus named.
— Advayataraka Upanishad , Verse 16
"If you look for the Dhamma, you will find that it has nothing to do with the forests, the mountains, or the caves - it exists in the heart. The language of the Dhamma isn't English or Thai or Sanskrit. It has its own language, which is the same for all people - the language of experience. There is a great difference between concepts and direct experience. Whoever puts a finger into a glass of hot water will have the same experience of hot, but it is called by many words in different languages. Similarly, whoever looks deeply into the heart will have the same experience, no matter what his or her nationality or culture or language."
– Ajahn Chah
'If you have neither the time nor the inclination to become acquainted with the view that samsara is an illusion, try, while you are still alive and healthy, not to get too attached to your plans, hopes and expectations. At the very least, prepare yourself for the possibility that nothing will work out. Everything good in your life could, in the blink of an eye, become the exact opposite; and everything you value could suddenly become worthless.'
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
Living is Dying
When samsaric existence is freed in itself, there is no Awakened state to accomplish apart from that.
Once you realize this, Samsara and Nirvana are not two.
~ Guru Rinpoche
My teachings are a raft, meant to help you cross over the river. Once you reach the other shore, set the raft down and go on with your life.
Knowledge that Ends the Quest for Intellectual Certainty
"At the time of the Buddha, there were countless religious and spiritual teachers, each advocating a different spiritual path and practice, and each claiming their teachings were the best and the most correct. One day a group of young people came to ask the Buddha, "Of all these teachers, whom should we believe?”
"Don't believe anything, not even what I tell you!" replied the Buddha. "Even if it's an ancient teaching, even if it's taught by a highly revered teacher. You should use your intelligence and critical mind to carefully examine everything you see or hear. And then put the teaching into practice to see if it helps liberate you from your suffering and your difficulties, if it does, you can believe in it."
- Thich Nhat Hanh
“The fundamental error persists in the public that there are definite answers, "solutions," or views which need only be uttered in order to spread the necessary light. But the most beautiful truth — as history has shown a thousand times over— is of no use at all unless it has become the innermost experience and possession of the individual. Every unequivocal, so-called "clear" answer always remains stuck in the head and seldom penetrates to the heart.
The needful thing is not to know the truth but to experience it.
Not to have an intellectual conception of things, but to find our way to the inner, and perhaps wordless, irrational experience — that is the great problem.
Nothing is more fruitless than talking about how things must or should be, and nothing is more important than finding the way to these far-off goals. Most people know very well how things should be, but who can point the way to get there?”
C. G. Jung -The Symbolic Life
You can’t heal the people you love. You can’t make choices for them. You can’t rescue them. You can promise that they won’t journey alone. You can loan them your map. But this trip is theirs ..
- Laura Jean Truman
Nobody cares how much you know,
until they know how much you care, about them.
"The highest form of knowledge is empathy, for it requires us to suspend our egos and live in another's world."
"Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, be fortified by it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it."
The more wisdom you attain & the more conscious you become, the crazier you will appear to others.
Do you have the patience to wait till your mind settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right action arises by itself? The master doesn't seek fulfillment. Not seeking, not expecting, she is present, and can welcome all things.
-- Lao Tzu
Reality is Always Already the Case
"No one owns a copyright on the Buddha’s teachings. They belong to the world, and in that sense they are not something I can offer to you. The teachings and teachers are ubiquitous. Reality is your teacher. Everything that appears can become your teacher. The four seasons can teach you. Anything can be a teacher of Buddhist teachings. Anything."
– 17th Karmapa
You Become What You Meditate On
''Samsara, the transmigration of life, takes place in one's own mind. Let one therefore keep the mind pure, for what a man thinks that he becomes. This is a mystery of eternity.''
- Maitrayaniya Upanishad
Purity and impurity belong to oneself.
No one else can purify another.
You Can't Become Happy You Can Only BE Happy
"The fact is that without inner peace and wisdom, we have nothing we need to be happy. Living on a pendulum between hope and doubt, excitement and boredom, desire and weariness, it's easy to fritter away our lives, bit by bit, without even noticing, running all over the place and getting nowhere. Happiness is a state of inner fulfillment, not the gratification of inexhaustible desires for outward things."
- Matthieu Ricard, Happiness
"The problem is, most of us spend our entire life going from one promise of relief to another, never staying with the pain long enough to learn anything from it.”
Pema Chodron, Living Beautifully
"For Freud, the pursuit of happiness is a distraction from living. It would be better to aim for something different -- a type of life in which you do not need a fantasy of satisfaction in order to find being human an interesting and worthwhile experience... Human beings are more likely to find ways of living well if they do not spend their lives aiming to be happy."
The Illusion of Ultimate Fulfillment
“Some people think they can find satisfaction in good food, fine clothes, lively music, and sexual pleasure. However, when they have all these things, they are not satisfied. They realize happiness is not simply having their material needs met. Thus, society has set up a system of rewards that go beyond material goods. These include titles, social recognition, status, and political power, all in a package called self-fulfillment. Attracted and goaded on by social pressure, people spend their short lives tiring body and mind to chase after these goals. Perhaps this gives them the feeling that they have achieved something in their lives, but in reality they have sacrificed a lot in life. They can no longer see, hear, act, feel, or think from their hearts. In the end, they’ve spent their lives following other people’s demands and never lived a life of their own. How different is this from the life of a slave or a prisoner?”
- Liezi, Lieh-tzu: A Taoist Guide
Denial of the True Self
“Narcissism describes both a psychological and a cultural condition. On the individual level, it denotes a personality disturbance characterized by an exaggerated investment in one's image at the expense of the self. Narcissists are more concerned with how they appear then what they feel. Indeed, they deny feelings that contradict the image they seek. Acting without feeling, they tend to be seductive and manipulative, striving for power and control. They are egoists, focused on their own interests but lacking the values of the self—namely, self expression, self-possession, dignity, and integrity. Narcissists lack a sense of self derived from body feelings. Without a solid sense of self, they experience life as empty and meaningless. It is a desolate state.
On a cultural level, narcissism can be seen as a loss of human values—in a lack of concern for the environment, for the quality of life, for one's fellow human beings. A society that sacrifices the natural environment for profit and power betrays its insensitivity to human needs. The proliferation of material things becomes the measure of progress in living, and man is pitted against woman, worker against employer, individual against community. When wealth occupies a higher position then wisdom, when notoriety is admired more than dignity, when success is more important than self respect, the culture itself over values “image” and must be regarded as narcissistic.”
-Alexander Lowen M.D., Narcissism: Denial of the True Self
“Because the narcissist has so few inner resources, he looks to others to validate his sense of self. He needs to be admired for his beauty, charm, celebrity, or power—attributes that usually fade with time. Unable to achieve satisfying sublimations in the form of love and work, he finds that he has little to sustain him when youth passes him by…
People cling to the illusion of youth until it can no longer be maintained, at which point they must either accept their superfluous status or sink into dull despair. Neither solution makes it easy to sustain much interest in life.”
Life is a stage, and when the curtain falls upon an act, it is finished and forgotten. The emptiness of such a life is beyond imagination.
—Alexander Lowen, M.D.
Feel Your Way into Being
The Sound of the Rain Needs No Translation
Ego by Eckhart Tolle
All the misery on the planet arises due to the personalized sense of 'me' or 'us.' That covers up the essence of who you are. When you are unaware of that inner essence, in the end, you always create misery. It's as simple as that. When you don't know who you are, you create a mind-made self (the ego) as a substitute for your beautiful divine being and cling to that fearful and needy self. Protecting and enhancing that false self (the ego) then becomes your primary motivating force.
Ego wants to be special. If it can't be special by being superior to others, it's also quite happy with being especially miserable.
"Is suffering really necessary? Yes and no. If you had not suffered as you have, there would be no depths to you as a human being–no humility, no compassion. ... Suffering cracks open the shell of ego. And then comes a point where it has served its purpose. Suffering is necessary until you realize that it is unnecessary."
Become at ease with the state of 'not knowing.' This takes you beyond mind because the mind is always trying to conclude and interpret. It is afraid of not knowing. So, when you can be at ease with not knowing, you have already gone beyond mind.
- ECKHART TOLLE -
The Only Constant is Change
The only constant is change. A narcissist will never be willing to change. They believe that they are perfect, and its the world around them that must cater to them.
"Basically, I think you need two things to get by in this world: a sense of humor and the ability to laugh when your ego is destroyed."
~ Arlo Guthrie
Be Like a Flower Showering the Fragrance of Joy
"A man who is filled with arrogance suffers from it, not knowing how to free himself from it. By being arrogant he is constantly in conflict with others. He suffers this pain and finds himself alone, filled with the additional pain of loneliness. People feel scared to connect with him and he is scared of his loneliness, which makes him angrier. This is like adding fuel to fire. He approaches a spiritual healer for advice. The healer says, “Look at a flower. Irrespective of who comes by, the flower gives fragrance.”
He further adds, “Come from a context that you will be like a flower showering the fragrance of joy. Always carry a flower with you and let that flower remind you of its function. You have to awaken more of female energy.
Arrogance is the obesity of the head, and the heart of education is the education of the heart. The head is the function of male energy and the heart is the function of female energy. The balance of head and heart means the balance of the male and female energies in oneself. We are a product of our parents, and hence, both male and female energies exist in us. This balancing is an important aspect of wise living."
By Swami Sukhabodhananda
"How much 'ego' do you need?
Just enough so that you don't step in front of a bus."
Being & Having
“In a recent book, Erich Fromm advances the hypothesis that being is reduced by having. He says, “Only to the extent that we decrease the mode of having, that is, nonbeing-i.e., stop finding security and identity by clinging to what we have, by ‘sitting on it,’ by holding onto our ego and our possessions-can the mode of being emerge,” According to Fromm, the two terms, being and having, represent two very different attitudes to life. The having mode is based on possessive relationships. The self is seen as the I that has a wife, a home, a car, a job, even a body. Since the I that has a body is the ego, the having mode is an egocentric position. This mode developed from and depends on private property, power, profit. It’s focus is upon the individual rather than the community. The being mode, on the other hand, is based on loving, giving, and sharing relationships. In this mode the measure of the self is not in terms of what one owns but how much one gives or loves. In the Being mode, the individual finds his identity through his responsibility to the community.
Fromm’s exposition of the differences between these two attitudes to life is insightful. The possessive mode not only reduces being, it restricts freedom. The things we own, own us. We are possessed by our possessions in the sense that we must think about them, worry about them, and take care of them. We are not free to walk away and leave them because for many of us they represent our identity, our security, and even our sanity. We would not hesitate to describe such a person as crazy if he just gave away a fortune just to be free. We think we can’t be free unless one has a fortune, so we spend our lives trying to make a fortune, and we discover too late that we sacrificed our freedom. We do not realize that freedom is worth more than a fortune, for without freedom one cannot be. “
Alexander Lowen, M.D. Fear of Life
Whoever wants music instead of noise, joy instead of pleasure, soul instead of gold, creative work instead of business, passion instead of foolery, finds no home in this trivial world of ours.
Being & Doing
"We have a tendency to think in terms of doing and not in terms of being. We think that when we are not doing anything, we are wasting our time. But that is not true. Our time is first of all for us to be. To be what? To be alive, to be peaceful, to be joyful, to be loving. And that is what the world needs most.”
- Thich Nhat Hanh
Given his culture and the character it produces, what is the fate of modern man? If the story of Oedipus can serve as a prophecy, it is a prophecy of achieving the success and power one seeks only to find one’s world coming apart or breaking down. If success is measured by material possessions, as it is in the industrialized cultures, and power by the ability to do and go (machines and energy), most people in the Western world have both success and power. The collapse of their world is the impoverishment of their inner or emotional lives. Having committed themselves to success and power, they have little else to live for. And like Oedipus they have become wanderers on the earth, uprooted beings who can find no peace anywhere. Each individual feels alienated, to some degree, from his fellowman, and each carries within him a deep sense of guilt that he does not understand. This is the existential condition of modern man.
Alexander Lowen, M.D. Fear of Life
At the core of every addiction is an emptiness based in abject fear. The addict dreads and abhors the present moment; she bends feverishly only toward the next time, the moment when her brain, infused with her drug of choice, will briefly experience itself as liberated from the burden of the past and the fear of the future—the two elements that make the present intolerable. Many of us resemble the drug addict in our ineffectual efforts to fill in the spiritual black hole, the void at the center, where we have lost touch with our souls, our spirit—with those sources of meaning and value that are not contingent or fleeting. Our consumerist, acquisition-, action-, and image-mad culture only serves to deepen the hole, leaving us emptier than before. The constant, intrusive, and meaningless mind-whirl that characterizes the way so many of us experience our silent moments is, itself, a form of addiction—and it serves the same purpose.
“One of the main tasks of the mind is to fight or remove the emotional pain, which is one of the reasons for its incessant activity, but all it can ever achieve is to cover it up temporarily. In fact, the harder the mind struggles to get rid of the pain, the greater the pain.” So writes Eckhart Tolle. Even our 24/7 self-exposure to noise, e-mails, cell phones, TV, Internet chats, media outlets, music downloads, video games, and nonstop internal and external chatter cannot succeed in drowning out the fearful voices within.
― Gabor Maté,
In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction
The Deeper Roots of Suffering, Addiction and Egoic Desire
A narcissistic parent often plays favorites with their kids and favors the one who they can vicariously live through and makes them "look good." Be it Harvard, Wallstreet or Hollywood.
Love can't be won or earned, for it is a spontaneous expression of affection and warmth in response to another person's being. It's “I love you,” not “I love what you are doing.” Love implies an acceptance that was denied the child. Once we give up our true self to play a role, we are fated to be rejected because we have already rejected ourselves.
-- Dr. Alexander Lowen
You may struggle with shame because you were raised in an environment where parental figures were overly concerned about their appearance and what others thought of you all.
The defining characteristic of developmental trauma is shame - the feeling that who or what I am, that the things I love and value in life, are bad, or wrong, or insufficient.
Healing can be offensive to those who benefited from your brokeness.
Your family kept secrets and or encouraged you to hide things or lie to save face. Your family often commented, judged, compared or criticized others. Your family stressed the importance of achievements, leading you to believe your worth is determined by your accomplishments.
You were raised in a religion that used shame. You were verbally, physically, emotionally or sexually abused.
You were neglected or bullied.
Trauma survivors crave honesty and authenticity. We've had to fight for our ability to think clearly and know who we are. We aren't willing to engage with those who do not honor that.
Having a narcissistic parent truly destroys a family, which includes extended family members. There are always what I call "relationship casualties." These are the family members you end up losing your relationship with. If siblings are true conformers, you will not be able to show them your parent's narcissism. They are too brainwashed. Other family members may be enablers, or choose not to see it due to denial and being overly narcissistic themselves; selfish, greedy, jealous and fearful. Dysfunctionally dependent on the four commodites; love, approval, survival and security.
“When people are treated like machines, they become heartless and soulless. They lose touch with the natural human sense of empathy that normally serves to warn them when they are treating others abusively or neglectfully.”
- Pete Walker, The Tao of Fully Feeling
That uncle or aunt who kept their distance from the rest of the family will start making more sense to you as you get older.
The older I get, the more I realize I don't want to be around drama, conflict or stress. I want a cozy home, good food, and to be surrounded by happy people.
"Shut down the drama in your life. It is unhealthy. Arguing and fighting creates dis-ease. Stay away from negative, selfish, energy-draining relationships that do not honor you, or even worse -use you, abuse you, and take advantage of your kindness. Do not buy into their negativity or guilt trips. Resolve to live in peace. Do not attempt to change others. There is enough work to do on yourself. Develop relationships where all parties can grow, and create an atmosphere of mutual respect, love, and appreciation. Free yourself from inner chaos by meditation, relaxation, and stillness. What you create inside of yourself will manifest outside yourself. Create a sanctuary where you can live in peace, relax your mind, revive your spirit, and renew your purpose."
Author: Les Brown
You're crazy to everyone who can't manipulate you. Narcissists rewrite history to escape accountability.
-You're Not Crazy
A hungry heart will eat lies. When there is a pattern of similar people and hurtful behaviour that keeps showing up in our lives, then there is something subconsciously going on there that is worth exploring.
When two people have nothing to hide, no one to impress, nothing to lose, no games left to play, no attachment to outcomes ...real connection and intimacy happens.
That which we do not bring to cosciousness appears in our lives as fate.
Sometimes people hold a core belief that is very strong. When they are presented with evidence that works against that belief, the new evidence can not be accepted. It would create a feeling that is exremely uncomfortable, called cognitive dissonance. And because it so so important to protect the core belief, they will rationalize, ignore and even deny anything that doesn't fit in with the core belief.
You are only acceptable to the dysfunctional family if you follow their rules and roles. You experience rejection when you assert your needs, opinions, or desires. You lose "love" for stepping outside your prescribed role, or telling the truth about the family's dysfunction.
Narcissistic family members will deny and lie to protect each other and family dysfunction. They want to keep pretending that nothing is wrong. If you speak up and acknowledge the family abuse and manipulation, they will unite and turn on you, then convince themselves that they are a strong united family (cult).
One of the most classic threats – ”Your family will abandon you if you do not align with their belief system/viewpoint.”
The shame lies with the abuser and their "flying monkeys." They rely on your silence in order to keep abusing, Speak up, speak out against abusers. They don't deserve anything other then to be exposed for what they are. As a survivor stand tall and tell your story. Your story could very well save someone else's life.
If someone uses manipulative tactics, they are abusive and toxic, regardless of their excuses or occasional displays of (superficial) kindness. Gas-lighting, crazy-making, and projection are intentional, manipulative behaviors. Manipulation is when they blame you for your reaction, to their disrespect. Don't let your loyalty become slavery. Know when to let go and never compromise on self respect.
Someone who uses your anger against you when your anger is justified due to their bad behaviour is a person who is manipulative to their core. This Happens when a toxic person intentionally abuses someone. The victim responds with anger or another normal reaction and the toxic abuser then accuses the victim of being the abusive person. The toxic person accuses the victim of being abusive for reacting to their abuse. And the toxic person plays the victim role.
"Shhh I am allowed to abuse you, but you are not allowed to talk about it, and if you do, I will become a victim; deny, dissociate and accuse you of provocation, harrassment and being unstable."
Trauma survivors crave honesty and authenticity. We've had to fight for our ability to think clearly and know who we are. It has cost us greatly. We aren't willing to engage with those who do not honor that.
Narcissistic energy is not the true force of Life, which consists of love, integrity, peace, honesty and joy. Rather, narcissism is a false existence born from illusions, masks, manipulation, deception, pain and fear.
After you've been used by a narcissist your self-doubt is replaced by anger. You know the truth. You see how you were used, groomed, manipulated and brainwashed. You're beyond angry. You want to contact everyone in their life and tell them what they did. You want to write them a letter and tell them to burn in hell. You obsessively talk about it with your friends and family-you need to get your story out there. You have been shut down and minimized for so long, and your voice is finally free.
Healing can be offensive to those who benefited from your brokeness.
You are very hard to control when you are healthy. You're very hard to manipulate when you are clear. You are very hard to influence when you are sovereign. Want to know what offends toxic people?
You standing up for yourself.
In a toxic family system, the black sheep is often just the person who sees through everyone else's bullshit.
Most normal, decent people with integrity, tend to think that others have the same morals and values as they do, and because of this take others at face value. Healthy boundaries, what manipulative and abusive behavior is, and paying attention to our gut instincts are things that very few people are taught. Once you realize what is going on, you'll likely start working to get more in alignment with what is healthy for you. And you'll be shocked by how fast your life starts to change for the better.
Walking away from the entire family is one of the most painful things a scapegoat child in a narcissistic family will ever do. Abuse from the "family" is often so severe and mentally damaging that the only solution left after exhausting all other avenues is to walk away from the family and anybody outside of the family that is connected to the family.
Narcissistic parents don't know their children. They aren't interested in what they have to say unless it affects them. The parents may be looking at the child, but they are not listening. As the child talks, it's as if the parent is looking right through them. The parents response is either about themselves, comparing the child to someone else, what the child has done wrong, or they change the subject and dissociate completely.
If there is someone in your life you cannot speak the truth to or are afraid to confront, examine the ways in which this person is manipulating or controlling you.
Dependency is the number one reason why people don't set boundaries with their abusive families.
A child who can sense that they are not living up to their parents expectations becomes the adult who betrays themselves for validation.
May you have the courage to break the patterns in your life that are no longer serving you.
Empathic adult children of narcissistic families often:
Play the caregiver role in relationships. Don't know what they like. Are described as "easy going" (because they don't feel safe expressing needs in relationships). Are shocked when someone thinks of them. Don't know how to experience pleasure outside of giving someone else pleasure. Are very angry but don't know it. Are highly attuned to others' emotions. Fear setting boundaries and having opinions.
Taking care of yourself does not mean me first. It means me too!
Boundaries have nothing to do whether you love someone or not. They are not judgements, punishments, or betrayals. They are a purely peaceable thing. Boundaries teach people how to treat you and they teach you how to respect yourself.
"If you begin by sacrificing to those you love, you will end by hating those to whom you have sacrificed yourself."
- George Bernard Shaw
In western culture, self hatred is epidemic, infecting everyone to some degree. Especially those who manage to conceal it under a veneer of arrogant, superficial charm. Repressed armored strength; outward "success" and looking good.
Empathy is when because you have found peace you understand with compassion why people suffer. In order to love who you are, you cannot hate the experiences that shaped you.
Feel your feelings, but never wish anyone pain. That is not who you are. If someone caused you pain, they must have pain inside. Wish them healing. That is what they need.
When you keep trying to awaken a toxic person, you are draining your own energy. A lot of times we feel really bad for our loved ones and we want them to awaken already, but it's not that simple. You can't force awakening on someone, it happens on it's own, the best you can do is set an example for them by being your highest self and if they are ready, they'll come knock on your door.
"Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded, It's a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity."
- Pema Chödrön, The Places That Scare You: A Guide to Fearlessness in Difficult Times
by James Hollis
"Surely the greatest tragedy for men in regard to the feminine principle is that their fear alienates them from their own anima, the principle of relatedness, feeling and connection to the life force. This alienation from self obliges alienation from other men as well. Often their only connection with each other comes through superficial talk about outer events, such as sports and politics.
...Men today cannot claim their identity via culture because they are obliged to find other uninitiated males as their models or succumb to the empty values of a materialistic society. Again, before healing may begin, men must acknowledge the reality of what lies within. Among those confusing emotions is a deep grief for the loss of the personal father as companion, model and support, and a deep hunger for the fathers as a source of wisdom, solace and inspiration.
...Our society has long treated men as machines, as bodies expendable in the name of progress or profit. Men have overruled their pain and soul's delight, taught to think of themselves as "mechanisms". Such an estrangement wounds very deeply; it has gone on so long and is so taken for granted that healing individuals, let alone a whole gender, is a dubious undertaking. But the beat goes on, the Saturnian shadow lives, the only game in town, and shame on the defector. The wounding is institutionalized and sanctified, and men unwittingly collude in their own crucifixion.
...How difficult it is for modern men to cross the great abyss without any help! The rituals have not been preserved, there are almost no wise elders left, and at least some model of the transition of a man to a state of maturity is missing. So most of us stay with our individual addictions, boasting about our dubious macho compensation, and much more often suffering alone from shame and indecision.
...When men feel the wound that cannot heal, they either bury themselves in a woman's arms and ask her for healing, which she cannot provide, or they hide themselves in macho pride and enforced loneliness.
...To leave the comforts of home, the mother world, one must have some place to go. Admittedly, the rites of passage of traditional cultures were to initiate the youth into a simpler society, a more homogenous culture than ours. As well, their interest lay not in the individuation of the person but in the integration of the unformed person into the collective definition of tribal masculinity. Still, take away such psychically charged images of identity, take away the wisdom of the elders, take away the community of men, and one has the modern world."
- James Hollis. Selected quotes from: Under Saturn's Shadow: The Wounding and Healing of Men
By Maya Luna
"I recognize that it is becoming a popular trend that blissful relationships can be attained through the adoration and exaltation of a man's so called "masculine" traits of leader, provider and protector and that this "masculine devotion" is the secret ingredient for “divine union". But offering your love and devotion to a man based on what he does for you and provides for you is a slippery kind of violence. Yes, appreciation can help any relationship bloom. And: the primary wound of man is that he is valued based on what he does rather than who he is. That’s patriarchy.
Men are worth how much money they make. How strong they can be. How well they can provide. What kind of status they hold. In this system man is a work horse of labor. Valued for what he can give alone. Stroking this wound is not a service to man. And offering your love and devotion as a transaction for it is not an act of reverence. It’s feeding a toxic system where man is a disposable object based on his Do-ing. An objectification equivalent to a woman being valued solely based on her looks.
Ego strokes are like drugs. The high feels “good” yet there’s something yucky about it and the soul weeps. Nothing wrong with appreciation for service. Service is a wonderful thing to give and receive. But when that becomes your temple of devotion you are worshipping false idols. And deepening a massive wound in the male psyche who hopes that he will be loved if he can only finally perform and do enough for you. It’s the flip side of nagging and criticism. Same game, different drag.
Lets not pretend that praising and adoring the "alpha man" for how Alpha he is is some spiritual pinnacle for honoring the masculine. Reducing a man to a walking wallet and work horse who you love because of what he can provide. If you want to radically serve and honor a man- reflect his soul and worthiness as a Be-ing. Reflect the beauty and power of his existence when he is empty handed."
by Marion Woodman
"When I say the feminine, I don’t mean gender. I mean the feminine principle that is living—or suppressed—in both men and women. The feminine principle attempts to relate. Instead of breaking things off into parts, it says, Where are we alike? How can we connect? Where is the love? Can you listen to me? Can you really hear what I am saying? Can you see me? Do you care whether you see me or not?
Now, these are very serious questions. And the feminine is difficult to talk about because so few people have experienced it. The feminine is presence, and relatedness, and a heart that can open so that when you meet another person you actually are seeing that person’s authentic self. What meaning does human life have if nobody has ever seen you?
I can’t tell you the number of people—men and women—who have sat in my office sobbing, saying, “Nobody ever saw me. Nobody ever had time to listen. So I am unlovable”—the saddest word in the language. Sometimes I’ve had a real flood of feeling about somebody, and I put out my hand and they say, “Don’t touch me. I’m unlovable.” And they mean it. As a child, that person was raised where the feminine was not present. You have to experience the feminine to understand it.
Ask yourself: As a child, who saw you? Who heard you? Was there anyone with whom you could be totally yourself and to whom you could trust your heart responses and speak your soul responses? Someone who made you think, “Gosh, I am somebody. They’re happy that I’m here.”
The great work of our time is to bring the feminine into this culture. And it’s not an easy path. How does each one of us contribute? Believe it or not, it’s done in the most personal ways. Take time to listen to your dreams, to write them down. Take time to recognize that there are things going on within you that need to be felt, or said, or lived, or grieved. Pay attention to these things both in yourself and in the people in your life. Pay attention to the authentic self.
...Love is the real power. It’s the energy that cherishes. The more you work with that energy, the more you will see how people respond naturally to it, and the more you will want to use it. It brings out your creativity and helps everyone around you flower. Your children, the people you work with—everyone blooms."
Addiction to Perfection
"First, I believe that femininity is taking responsibility for our bodies, so that the body becomes the tangible expression of the spirit within.
For those of us who have lived life in the head, this is a long, difficult and agonizing process, because in attempting to release our muscles, we also release the pent-up fear and rage and grief that has been buried there, probably since or before birth.
Within ourselves we find a stricken animal almost dead from starvation and mistreatment. Because it has been punished for long, it acts at first like a wild neurotic creature that hasn’t known love. But gradually it becomes our friend, and because it understands the instincts better than we, it becomes our guide to a natural, spiritual way of life.
To find the natural rhythms of our bodies, to walk, to see, to hear, to feel with renewed sensitivity and perception, is to return to our birthright which is our gift from the Goddess."
Marion Woodman, Addiction to Perfection
by Mary Allison
"There's a lot of talk regarding toxic feminine behavior in the media right now. This is an opportunity for us to look deeper into the dark or unresolved feminine.
Toxic femininity hides behind veils of victim consciousness, exploiting the raw and vulnerable state of victimhood into methods of pure psychological entrapment.
She is manipulative, yet claims to want healing or to be the healer. However, in her endeavor to be "the healer", there is an air of entitlement, a crusade for control.
She presents herself through different archetypes, the girl next door, the empowered Goddess, the perpetual victim, yet these archetypal roles are just costumes for her to wear, as the energy she emits starkly collides with the roles she ventures to play. Something about her feels hollow or off, this is because she's not living authentically. A mind full of calculations and planning, leads to her gaze appearing empty, as her thoughts run through emotional data, scanning and absorbing the environment around her so she can draw all essences of vulnerability and naivete into a hue of self-serving adornment. She is apathy using empathy as a disguise.
She was wounded once, and instead of seeking true healing or refuge she sought revenge upon the world. She does this by transforming the world around her into a dark altar of sacrificial and misplaced reverence. Where there are psychological weak spots, she coils forth like overgrown ivy, wrapping her essence and hypnotic love around the victim until all the victim can see and breathe is her. Tunnel vision is created and she is the focal point. She will stop at nothing to be seen, to be worshipped, to be in control.
She switches quite often. If one form of receiving attention fails to get her the recognition she'd hoped for, she (very quickly) embodies a new persona. This shows how false her personas are. The fact that she reinvents herself daily, usually from a place of needing to be drastically seen, displays her parasitic approach. Wear the outfit that garners attention, if it doesn't attract enough attention, then change.
She goes wherever she can gain the most control, seeking out partners who offer her a chance in the limelight, forms of recognition she hasn't yet earned but demands to receive.
What put her in the position she's in? Was it hard work? A lifetime of study? Or a sexual prowess that slept its way into positions of power?
We see it in nature all of the time. The praying mantis has sex only to devour the male mantis by beheading it. Though this sounds overly dramatic and slightly obscure, this is the pattern of the toxic feminine. To persuade through love, and once she is let in, to take control of the consciousness of others. The symbol of devouring the head of one's mate perfectly displays the poetic nod of a consumption of power.
Toxic Feminine energy can manifest through men or women, as all of us encompass expressions of both feminine and masculine energy.
What's so interesting about toxic femininity, is it's very similar to toxic masculinity. Both forms of toxicity operate as parasitic patterns looking to exploit their way into power. These parasitic patterns work through the woundings of others as a way to turn vulnerability into entrapment.
One of the most obvious signs of these toxic archetypes is that you will always feel off or unsafe in their presence. If the container you create with another doesn't feel secured and relaxed, this may be a sign that instability is to come. In intimate connections, you should be able to voice all that is vulnerable without feeling like your truth is an inconvenience. In fact, in truly healthy connections, the truth of both partners should be celebrated and discussed, unless the truth is being exploited as a power grab.
Right now the collective is learning that both polarities, the feminine and the masculine, contain spectrums of beauty and darkness, both of which must be met with personal honesty and accountability if they wish to be integrated correctly.
We, as a collective, can take these lessons into our own psyche's, observing our own behaviors and actions as a way of further purifying our relationship with self, and therefore our relationships with others."
(Clients, friends, lovers, bosses, mentors, family)
by Brianna Wiest
"It is not an attitude of pride, but of congruence. You will continue to love them but with another perspective, from another level of understanding, comprehension and awareness.
It is the most difficult thing you will have to do in your life, and it will also be the most important: stop being linked to those who are not ready to love you.
Stop having difficult conversations with people who don't want to change. Stop appearing for people who are indifferent to your presence. Stop giving your love and energy to people who are not ready to love you.
I know that your instinct is to do everything you can to earn the good graces of everyone you can, but it is also the impulse that will steal your time, your energy and your sanity.
When you begin to be in your life completely, with joy, interest and commitment, not everyone will be ready to meet you there.
That does not mean you have to change who you are. It means you have to get away from people who are not prepared to be with you.
If you are excluded, subtly insulted, forgotten or easily ignored by the people you spend most of your time with, you are not doing yourself a favor by continuing to offer them your energy and your life.
The truth is that you are not for everyone, and they are not all for you. That is what makes it so special when you find the few people with whom you have a genuine friendship, love or relationship: you will know how precious it is because you have experienced what is not.
But the more time you spend trying to force someone to be with you when they are not able, the more time you will be depriving yourself of that same connection. It's waiting for you. There are billions of people on this planet, and many of them will meet you at their level, with the vibration of where they are, connected with where they are going.
…But the longer you stay involved in the familiarity of people who use you as a cushion, a background option, a therapist and a strategist for their emotional work, the longer you stay out of the community you crave.
Maybe if you stop showing up, you'll be less loved.
Maybe they forget you completely.
Maybe if you stop trying, the relationship will end.
Maybe if you stop sending text messages, your phone will remain dark for days and weeks.
Maybe if you stop loving someone, the love between you will dissolve.
That doesn't mean you ruined a relationship. It means that the only thing that sustained a relationship was the energy that you and only you put into it. That's not love. That is attachment.
The most precious and important thing you have in your life is your energy. It is not your time that is limited, it is your energy. What you give to each day is what will create more and more in your life. What you give your time is what will define your existence.
When you realize this, you will begin to understand why you are so anxious when you spend your time with people who do not contribute to you, and in jobs or places or cities that do not suit you.
You will begin to realize that the most important thing you can do for your life, for yourself and for everyone you know is to protect your energy more fiercely than anything else.
Make your life a safe haven where only people who can care, listen and connect are allowed.
You are not responsible for saving people.
You are not responsible for convincing them that they want to be saved.
It is not your job to appear for people and give them your life, little by little, moment by moment, because you feel sorry for them, because you feel bad, because you "should", because you are obligated, because, at the root of all this, you are afraid that they will not return the favor and that is not to love as love is to release those you love and are not ready to be with you so they live what they have to live while you move on to find someone with whom you'll be able to share the reciprocity of healthy love. It is another level of consciousness.
It is your job to realize that you are the master and lover of your destiny, and that you are accepting the love that you think you deserve.
Decide that you deserve a real friendship, a true commitment and a complete love with people who are healthy and prosperous.
Then wait in the dark, just for a moment ... And look how quickly everything starts to change."
by Erich Fromm
“A person who has not been completely alienated, who has remained sensitive and able to feel, who has not lost the sense of dignity, who is not yet "for sale", who can still suffer over the suffering of others, who has not acquired fully the having mode of existence - briefly, a person who has remained a person and not become a thing - cannot help feeling lonely, powerless, isolated in present-day society. He cannot help doubting himself and his own convictions, if not his sanity. He cannot help suffering, even though he can experience moments of joy and clarity that are absent in the life of his "normal" contemporaries. Not rarely will he suffer from neurosis that results from the situation of a sane man living in an insane society, rather than that of the more conventional neurosis of a sick man trying to adapt himself to a sick society. In the process of going further in his analysis, i.e. of growing to greater independence and productivity,his neurotic symptoms will cure themselves."
~Erich Fromm (Book: The Art of Being https://amzn.to/3OFfnvi)
"Do not ask your children to strive for extraordinary lives. Such striving may seem admirable, but it is the way of foolishness. Help them instead to find the wonderland, the marvel of an ordinary life. Show them the joy of tasting tomatoes, apples and pears. Show them how to cry when pets and people die. Show them the infinite pleasure in the touch of a hand. And make the ordinary come alive for them. The extraordinary will take care of itself."
~ William Martin, "The Parent's Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents"
Few people in our culture have the courage to be themselves. Most people adopt roles, play games, wear masks, or put up facades. They do not believe that their genuine self is acceptable.
The masks, facades, and roles become structured in the body because the child believes that this pose will gain the parent’s approval and love. Our bodies are molded by the social forces in the family that shape our character and determine our fate... which is that we must try to please to gain approval and love.
So much energy is required to maintain a role or facade that little is left for pleasure or creativity. Imagine an actor playing a role constantly, both offstage and on, and you will get some idea of the energy it takes to do that. Being is effortless because it’s spontaneous and natural. That is why children can be so creative. However, most people do not sense the effort or energetic drain of the role they play. What they do feel is chronic fatigue, irritability, and frustration. When one plays a role, the end result is always depression.
Alexander Lowen, M.D. Fear of Life
Pushing away emotions, choosing not to experience pain, anger, or other intense feelings can cause those feelings to become buried deep inside our physical body.
"If you are willing to look at another person's behavior toward you as a reflection of the state of their relationship with themselves rather than a statement about your value as a person. then you will, over a period of time, cease to react at all."
~ Harbhajan Singh Yogi
Ocean, Motion, Emotion ...
In order to love who we are, we cannot hate the experiences that shaped us. Our entire human lives are built around the avoidance of emotion. Awakening is the return to what we have avoided. Until we can begin having honest communications about who we truly are, what "demons" we battle with, where we lack and what we truly want, love will continue to be a temporary emotion. Honesty and communication are key to stop being afraid to being who we are.
Unfortunately a lot of us weren't taught how to process our emotions from a young age, instead we learned how to suppress them, so the emotions that lay dormant from our childhood usually surface in our adult lives and these unresolved emotions can at times be triggered by present day situations, that we don't always associate with our past emotional distresses, so that's why it's extremely important to try and feel emotion as it arises, because by doing so we can gradually heal the wounded child that lives within us and learn to love the adult that we are now.
“Too many of us move through our lives with our true selves buried below layers of repressed emotion. With so much energy channeled toward sustaining the repression, there is little left over for the deeper questions. The consequences of our evasion are profound. Our stockpiles toxify into a cache of weapons that turn inward against the self: quick fix, long suffering. As Rumi said, “Most people guard against the fire, and so end up in it.” This is the power of then. If we don’t deal with our stuff, it deals with us.”
― Jeff Brown
Avoiding your triggers isn't healing.
Healing happens when you're triggered and you're able to move through the pain, the pattern and the story, and walk your way to a different ending.
Seeking for Fulfillment
“Man is always seeking something - money, power, sex, love, mystical experience, truth, enlightenment - and it is this seeking which keeps him out of his natural state. And although I am in a natural state, I cannot help someone else, because it is my natural state, not his.”
Mystics and Sages from both east and west have directly experienced the essence of human nature as a natural purity of the heart, from which all life affirming qualities flow: love, caring, courage, humor, wisdom, devotion, strength. As an inherent quality of our nature, this essence of being is fundamental, beyond any notion we have about being good or bad, based on our behaviour or acceptance by others.
As long as you seek for something,
you will get the shadow of reality not reality itself.
- Shunryu Suzuki Roshi
You can never understand the tremendous peace that is always there within you that is your natural state. Your trying to create a peaceful state of mind is in fact creating disturbance within you. You can only talk of peace, create a state of mind and say to yourself that you are very peaceful, but that is not peace, that is violence.
There is no use in practicing peace or reason to cultivate silence. Real silence is explosive. It is not the dead state of mind that spiritual seekers think. That doesn't mean anything at all. This is volcanic in its nature. It's bubbling all the time -- the energy, the life -- that is its quality.
~ U.G. Krishnamurti ('The Natural State')
Never does nature say one thing and wisdom another. - Juvenal
Fight, Flight, Freeze & Please
The adrenaline system functioned in early man on an instinct level, so that when he was attacked by an enemy or his life was being threatened by wild animals, he had this speedy secretion of adrenaline hormone to give him the necessary strength to fight or flee. In modern society, such threats are a remnant of the past. However, man is so attached to the symbols of his status within the society, that any threat to his position can set the adrenaline pumping into his blood stream for weeks and months at a time.
Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished. ~ Lao Tzu
Health, Trauma & Nervous System
If someone neglected their business to wander about aimlessly, people would say she is crazy. Yet those who completely ignore the inevitability of death and obsessively seek wealth and prestige are called sane! People who pathologically hoard so much cash that they impoverish the entire nation are put on the cover of Fortune magazine and made into role models. It is Greed (not money) hand-in-hand with ignorance which makes life so complicated. It is not easy when almost everybody around you is living a greedy, speedy, complicated life. You need great wisdom and a strong mind not to follow them. Before you know it you are anxiously thinking of what to do to prove that you are not a failure!
If a monkey hoarded more bananas then it could eat, while most of the other monkeys starved, scientists would study that monkey to figure out what the heck was wrong with it. When humans do it, we put them on the cover of Forbes.
Most people are not afraid of failure, they are afraid of other people's reaction to their failure.
"She was damn happy to be alive. She didn’t have millions in the bank. She wasn’t at the top of the corporate ladder and still her deepest dreams.. though she pursued them hadn’t yet come true. But still she was damn happy to be alive. She had people to love; a roof over her head; she had all the essentials for living; water, gas electricity, food; she could appreciate the flowers blooming, the sun beaming and the skies blessing. She had good books to read. She spoke to the moon at night. She often had a good sing in the shower. And she lived her life with a touch of her own style. The world’s mindless noise went quiet at the sight of her relentless joy."
~ S.C. Lourie
Looking For Love
Trying to win approval or acceptance is always a joyless task. When we no longer try to win love and attention through our work, we become better artists, teachers, students, parents, business people. We are freed to do what we do as creative play rather than as a form of self validation. A flower does not compete with another flower, it just blooms.
[A] man does not really begin to be alive until he has lost himself, until he has released the anxious grasp which he normally holds upon his life, his property, his reputation, his position.
- Alan Watts
The wise man knows that it is better to sit on the banks of a remote mountain stream than to be emperor of the whole world.
~ Chuang Tzu ~
Man, in his anxiety to maintain his non-existing and illusory identity, has been using thought to translate sensory perception. Everything you experience or can experience is thought-based. The self-absorption in thought creates a self-centeredness -- that is all that is there. Thought is an interloper which thrusts itself into the affairs of the senses. It has a profit motive. Thought directs the activity of the senses to get something out of them and uses them to give continuity to itself. When all such notions cease, there is great peace and existential suffering is transcended at its very root.
"All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability
to sit quietly in a room alone."
- Blaise Pascal
The Most Important Skill Nobody Taught You
According to Pascal, we fear the silence of existence, we dread boredom and instead choose aimless distraction, and we can’t help but run from the problems of our emotions into the false comforts of the mind.
The issue at the root, essentially, is that we never learn the art of solitude.
Vast Inner Solitude
"What is necessary, after all, is only this: solitude, vast inner solitude. To walk inside yourself and meet no one for hours - that is what you must be able to attain. To be solitary as you were when you were a child, when the grownups walked around involved with matters that seemed large and important because they looked so busy and because you didn't understand a thing about what they were doing.
And when you realize that their activities are shabby, that their vocations are petrified and no longer connected with life, why not then continue to look upon it all as a child would, as if you were looking at something unfamiliar, out of the depths of your own world, from the vastness of your own solitude, which is itself work and status and vocation? Why should you want to give up a child's wise not-understanding in exchange for defensiveness and scorn, since not understanding is, after all, a way of being alone, whereas defensiveness and scorn are a participation in precisely what, by these means, you want to separate yourself from.
Think... of the world that you carry inside you, and call this thinking whatever you want to: a remembering of your own childhood or a yearning toward a future of your own - only be attentive to what is arising within you, and place that above everything you perceive around you. What is happening in your innermost self is worthy of your entire love; somehow you must find a way to work at it, and not lose too much time or too much courage in clarifying your attitude toward people."
~Rainer Maria Rilke
You do not grow by acquiring something; Nor wither away by losing it. You remain what you always are.
~ Ramana Maharshi
Money means nothing, as long as you have enough of it.
"Wealth is like like sea-water; the more we drink, the thirstier we become: and the same is true of fame."
- Arthur Shopenhauer
Materially; food, clothing and shelter -- these are the basic needs. Beyond that if you think you need anything more (to be happy), you begin a journey of self-deception. Socially sanctioned neurosis. To deny yourself the basic needs is not a sign of spirituality. But to require more than food, clothing and shelter can become a neurotic state of mind. We de-sensitize ourselves with money, food, sex, and whatever else so we do not have to feel. Feel what? That we are vulnerable and are going to die. We do not want to feel this reality. It is too scary -- all our lives we are constantly doing things to immunize ourselves from this awareness and this pain.
“It is the preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly.“
"We spend so much time buying nice houses, decorating them according to our desires, making everything look very nice. We keep them clean, well-furnished, and beautifully decorated, and we show them with pride to other people. But actually, we don’t live in our houses, we live in our minds. If we go somewhere else, we leave our house behind. We don’t carry it with us; we are not snails. But our mind we carry with us everywhere; we live within our minds."
~ Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo
"We try to evade the question of existence with property, prestige, power, possession, production, fun, and, ultimately, by trying to forget that we- that I- exist. No matter how much he thinks of God or goes to church, or how much he believes in religious ideas , if he, the whole man, is deaf to the question of existence, if he does not have an answer to it, he is marking time, and he lives and dies like one of the million things he produces."
~ Erich Seligmann Fromm 1900-1980.
"The more a man lays stress on false possessions, and the less sensitivity he has for what is essential, the less satisfying is his life. He feels limited because he has limited aims, and the result is envy and jealousy. If we understand and feel that here in this life we already have a link with the infinite, desires and attitudes change."
~ Carl Jung
Love is the Only Satisfactory Answer
“I have frequently seen people become neurotic when they content themselves with inadequate or wrong answers to the questions of life. They seek position, marriage, reputation, outward success of money, and remain unhappy and neurotic even when they have attained what they were seeking. Such people are usually confined within too narrow a spiritual horizon. Their life has not sufficient content, sufficient meaning. If they are enabled to develop into more spacious personalities, the neurosis generally disappears.”
― C.G. Jung
(Are you happy? Go to 9:30 for answer)
I wish everyone could get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it's not the answer.
- Jim Carrey
"Those who have not found their true wealth, which is the radiant joy of Being and the deep, unshakable peace that comes with it, are beggars, even if they have great material wealth. They are looking outside for scraps of pleasure or fulfillment, for validation, security, or love, while they have a treasure within that not only includes all those things but is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer.”
― Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now
WHAT IS YOUR ATTITUDE TO MONEY?
"I have lived without money, I have lived with money, and I have one confession to make:
it is always better to live with money than without. Money is useful. One should not be used by it, that's all. I'm not against money; it should be used. It is a good, utilitarian invention. It helps.
It is tremendously useful; but use it, don't be used by it.
Money should not be your master; you should be the master, that's all. And if you have to choose, then my suggestion is: always choose to be with money. I am not saying that you will be happier; I am saying only that you will have more choice to choose your misery according to your heart.
A poor man has not much choice: he has to be miserable, whatever the misery happens to be. A rich man has much more choice. The poor man has to suffer in a limited way.
The rich man suffers unlimitedly: he can suffer here, he can suffer in New York, he can suffer in London, he can suffer in Peking. He has the whole world to suffer in.
And sooner or later, he will be suffering on the moon and Mars. he has more freedom, and freedom is good.
If you are poor you have to suffer one woman; if you are rich you have to suffer many women. It opens doors. So if you ask me, I will suggest that if you are trying to choose to live with money or without, I would say to live with money. it will give you more experience, it will bring you to God sooner -- because you will be tired sooner.
A poor man is never tired of money, remember. Because he has no money -- how to be tired of something you don't have? A poor man always hankers and desires and dreams about money. Only a rich man is finished with money. In fact, that is the definition of a rich man: one who is finished with money, he is the rich man. He has known, he has seen what money can give. And now he would like to have something more that Money can never give. I am not saying money can give you God, or peace, or happiness. But there are foolish people...
One MAHATMA came to see me a few years ago, and he said, "I have renounced money because through money you cannot have bliss.
But I said, "Who told you, in the first place you will have bliss? Through money you can have a beautiful house. Who told you that you will have bliss? Who has told you that you will have happiness? You will have a big car."
There are foolish people who expect that through money bliss is going to happen. Then they become disillusioned one day.
Money is not wrong; their illusion, their projection, was wrong. Money is not at fault. If you go and try to squeeze oil out of sand, and oil does not come out of it, will you say that the sand is at fault?
You were foolish, you were stupid. In the first place, who had told you that by squeezing sand you would get oil?
Money cannot give you bliss, cannot give you peace, cannot give you God, cannot give you paradise.
But to come to know this, one has to have money. Then you become clearly aware of what money can give and what money cannot give.
When a person has known what money can give, his efforts start moving beyond the money, beyond the world.
Money is a beautiful invention, one of the most important inventions man has ever made, next only to language -- the first is language, the second is money.
These are the two most important foundations for civilization, society, and culture.
I am not against it; I am simply saying what money can give and what money cannot give.
If you are thinking that by hoarding money, one day suddenly you will become meditative, then you are a fool. Not by hoarding money are you going to become mediative. And remember, not by renouncing money are you going to become meditative.
These are both foolish people. First they think that through money they will get God, then one day they think that by renouncing money they will get God -- but in both cases they remain money-oriented.
God has nothing to do with money. You can have God with as much money as you want, and you can have God without money, without as much money as you want. God has nothing to do with money. A rich man can become meditative, a poor man can become meditative.
But my understanding is this: that if a poor man wants to become meditative, he will need TREMENDOUS intelligence -- because he will have to see the futility of money which he does not have. He will need tremendous intelligence.
Kabir must have been tremendously intelligent -- I think more intelligent than Buddha and Mahavir.
My reason for saying so is this: Buddha had money, Mahavir had money. If they become fed-up, it is simple, it is logical. It is as simple as "two plus two are four." If Buddha had not renounced the palace, then it would have proved only one thing: that he was stupid.
If he renounced, that does not prove that he was very greatly intelligent, that simply proves an average intelligence.
But Kabir, Christ, Mohammed -- they are more intelligent people. They didn't have money, they didn't have anything, and still they became aware that money is useless. They didn't have a great kingdom, and without having it they renounced it.
They must have been very sharp people, tremendously alert.
They could see through things that they didn't have. Their transparency, their clarity, was tremendous, incredible.
If a poor man wants to be spiritual, he will need great intelligence. If a rich man wants to be spiritual, he needs only average intelligence.
So, if a poor man becomes spiritual, he is a great sage. And if a rich man does not become spiritual, he is a fool, stupid.
OSHO, The Path of Love
"Eye of a Needle" by Osho
′′Jesus says, ' A camel may pass through the eye of a needle but the rich will not be able to enter the kingdom of heaven. ' This does not mean that those who are rich will be deprived of entering the kingdom of heaven forever.
The question is not so much wealth, but whether it is the kind of wealth to which you add the highest value.
Maybe you have nothing, you are a beggar, but if your values lie in material wealth, your life is structured towards wealth, the foundation of your want is wealth, you calculate everything with wealth, so you can very well be a poor person, but you would not be able to enter the kingdom of heaven.
Why is that? - because those who believe in wealth believe in ego. To take refuge in wealth is to take refuge in the ego."
The seeds you now scatter will make life worse or better for you or for the ones who will come after you..
Someday you will enjoy the fruits or you will pay for the choices you make..
Whatever You Give To Life.. Life Gives You Back..
You will always harvest what you plant...
Life Lives On Life
"Life lives on life. This is the sense of the symbol of the Ouroboros, the serpent biting its tail. Everything that lives lives on the death of something else. Your own body will be food for something else.
Anyone who denies this, anyone who holds back, is out of order. Death is an act of giving."
"It is truly a great cosmic paradox that one of the best teachers in all of life turns out to be death. No person or situation could ever teach you as much as death has to teach you. While someone could tell you that you are not your body, death shows you. While someone could remind you of the insignificance of the things that you cling to, death takes them all away in a second. While people can teach you that men and women of all races are equal and that there is no difference between the rich and the poor, death instantly makes us all the same.
The question is, are you going to wait until that last moment to let death be your teacher?"
― Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself
"The things you really need are few and easy to come by; but the things you can imagine you need are infinite, and you will never be satisfied."
The trouble is, you think you have time. - Buddha
"Because we don't know when we will die, we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well. Yet everything happens only a certain number of times, and a very small number really. How many more times will you remember a certain afternoon of your childhood, an afternoon that is so deeply a part of your being that you can't even conceive of your life without it? Perhaps four, five times more, perhaps not even that. How many more times will you watch the full moon rise? Perhaps 20. And yet it all seems limitless."
~Paul Bowles, Sheltering Sky
"Security is a false God. Begin to make sacrifices to it and you are lost."
-- Paul Bowles
“Most people, including ourselves, live in a world of relative ignorance. We are even comfortable with that ignorance, because it is all we know. When we first start facing truth, the process may be frightening, and many people run back to their old lives. But if you continue to seek truth, you will eventually be able to handle it better. In fact, you want more! It's true that many people around you now may think you are weird or even a danger to society, but you don't care. Once you've tasted the truth, you won't ever want to go back to being ignorant.”
"Wealth is like like sea-water; the more we drink, the thirstier we become: and the same is true of fame."
- Arthur Shopenhauer
A zoologist who observed gorillas in their native habitat was amazed by the uniformity of their life and their vast idleness. Hours and hours without doing anything. Was boredom unknown to them? This is indeed a question raised by a human, a busy ape. Far from fleeing monotony, animals crave it, and what they most dread is to see it end. For it ends, only to be replaced by fear, the cause of all activity. Inaction is divine; yet it is against inaction that man has rebelled. Man alone, in nature, is incapable of enduring monotony, man alone wants something to happen at all costs — something, anything.... Thereby he shows himself unworthy of his ancestor: the need for novelty is the characteristic of an alienated gorilla.
E.M. Cioran, The Trouble with Being Born
“I believe that to pursue the American Dream is not only futile but self-destructive because ultimately it destroys everyone and everything involved with it. By definition it must, because it nurtures everything except those things that are important: integrity, ethics, truth, our very heart and soul. Why? The reason is simple: because Life/life is about giving, not getting.”
HUBERT SELBY JR.
Requiem for a Dream (Preface, 2000)
"For my part, the thing that I would wish to obtain from money would be leisure with security. But what the typical modern man desires to get with it is more money, with a view to ostentation, splendour, and the outshining of those who have hitherto been his equals.
The social scale in America is indefinite and continually fluctuating. Consequently all the snobbish emotions become more restless than they are where the social order is fixed, and although money in itself may not suffice to make people grand, it is difficult to be grand without money.
In America money is the accepted measure of brains. It is thought a man who makes a lot of money must be a clever fellow; a man who does not, is not. Nobody likes to be thought an idiot. Therefore, when the market is in ticklish condition, I have observed Americans behave the way young people do during an examination."
— Bertrand Russell, The Conquest of Happiness
"Positive thinking is a coping mechanism, an automatic coping mechanism. It is void of life. Feeling and experiencing the realness of what is actually happening are the essences of being alive. Feeling, connecting, reacting to the flow-- this is all living. Positive thinking happens in the head, meanwhile, it denies the heart its authentic, genuine feelings. Not only does it have the potential to rob you of real and deeper connection which is ultimately necessary to living a passionate and compassionate life; but it even has the potential to cut you off from reality itself. A mask that you put on your face, other people's faces, and throw over everything around you. We do not become positive by refusing to be real. We become positive people by really living, really feeling, and really rising above anything that would threaten to sink us. You can't even see what threatens to sink you if you refuse to acknowledge that it's even there. Why did Titanic sink? Someone refused to see the icebergs."
-C. JoyBell C.
Most people are not afraid of failure,
they are afraid of other people's reaction to their failure.
The insecurity of our persona, the hell of our fears, the pain of our wounds, the confusion of our minds, the insatiability of our appetites, the greed of our egos, our emptiness and longing all are rooted in ignorance of our true nature. We are slaves to our desires. Seeking union outside ourselves we long for another who will love us enough to heal the wounds of our insecurity, shame and self-hatred. We yearn for a relationship that will be a balm to the emptiness of our lives. We distract ourselves from our emptiness and self-hatred, our longing and insecurity, with money, food and sex or whatever -- all in a myriad of endless desires. The mind is tricky. The mind wants change, something different. It craves entertainment, stimulation. Boredom is a great problem. That's what most people are doing -- running after stimulation in one form or another.
This pain is not to make you sad, remember. That's where people go on missing. This pain is just to make you more alert--because people become alert only when the arrow goes deep into their heart and wounds them.
“The cause of all these sufferings is our fundamental insecurity. We are always wondering whether we exist or not. Our ego, or rather our attachment to the idea of self, is completely insecure about its own existence. Our ego may seem strong but it is actually quite shaky. Of course, we do not ask such questions consciously, but we always have a subconscious feeling of insecurity about whether we exist.
We try to use things such as friends, money, position and power, and all the everyday things that we do, like watching television or going shopping, to somehow prove and confirm our existence. Try sitting alone in a house and doing absolutely nothing. Sooner or later your hands will reach for the remote control or the newspaper. We need to be occupied. We need to be busy. If we are not busy, we feel insecure. But there is something very strange in all this. The ego searches constantly for distraction, and then the distraction itself becomes a problem. Instead of helping us to feel reassured, it actually increases our insecurity. We get obsessed with the distraction and it develops into another habit. Once it becomes a habit, it is difficult to get rid of. So in order to get rid of this new habit, we have to adopt yet another habit. This is how things go on and on.”
- Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche (The Causes of Suffering)
Adrenaline, Trauma, Cortisol & Ecstasy
"People who can’t find ecstasy in the heart of daily experience, often seek it outside themselves. I see this everywhere I look. There is often a directly proportional relationship between one’s hunger for bliss and one’s degree of emotional toxicity. The more extreme the internalized pain, the more extreme the quest for externalized bliss. I call them, ‘bliss-seeking missiles.’
Often trauma survivors on the run, they try any drug, or extreme experience, in the hopes of tasting from the ecstasy tree. They want it and need it that badly. They are looking for proof that there is more to this life than darkness. They are seeking evidence of essence, anywhere they can find it. It all works out well, if they take the energy that emanates from their adventures to come back down into their bodies to work through their stuff.
To clear so much emotional and energetic debris that they can one day feel ecstasy naturally, in the heart of daily life. It doesn’t work out well, when the quest becomes an entrenched way of being that floats them further and further way from themselves. Because ecstasy doesn’t mean a thing if there isn’t an intact self to come home to. The real ecstatic alchemy begins and ends within the self-itself. Centered. Spacious. Ecstatic in the heart of the everything."
- Jeff Brown
"One of the dysfunctional patterns of the mind is the assumption that the Now needs to be filled with something all the time. Of course you have to do things, but see if you can also experience the spaciousness of this moment, the inherent goodness of this moment, regardless of what it contains."
"What keeps all living things busy and in motion is the striving to exist. But when existence is secured, they do not know what to do: that is why the second thing that sets them in motion is a striving to get rid of the burden of existence, not to feel it any longer, ‘to kill time’, i.e. to escape boredom."
Desire is pure energy. Desire, without straining for fulfillment is the radiant juice of life. The difference between passion and addiction is, we can devote our entire life to a passion. If it’s truly passion not addiction, we’ll do so with freedom and joy, with a full assertion of our truest self and values. Passion energizes and enriches our relationships. It empowers and gives strength to others. Passion creates, addiction consumes. Addiction requires a particular outcome that feeds the ego. Without that outcome, the ego feels empty and deprived. The key to making friends with desire is to center our attention within the energy of desire itself, as a feeling energy in our body, rather than trying to control outcome or extract fulfillment, which is motivated by mind based conceptual points of views, based on the myriad self-centered, ego driven illusions of ultimate fulfillment.
Seeking something, desiring for something, is the basic dis-ease of the mind. Not seeking, or non-binding desiring or passion, is the health of our being. The demand to bring about change in ourselves is the root cause of suffering. Whether spiritual or material it does not matter. We want to become something other than what we are. That creates a neurotic situation. We maintain this neurosis in order to function in today's society. Spending our lives Becoming happy, rather than Being happy.
What is this longing in me that no relationship can satisfy. That no tears relieve. That is not changed by many beautiful dreams and adventures?
Awakening is an inherent biological urge. The process of awakening is inherent in the psycho-biological structures of every human being. Your natural state means awakening from ignorance and coming into a whole-body relationship with the world that is not separate from you. The natural state of not "knowing" which is prior to mind-based "points of view." Prior to notions, concepts, or ideas about yourself and others. Prior to "self" -identification with positive or negative "states" of experience. Life's own energy, freed from thought. Freed from the mind-based, separating action of contraction.
Most people dont really want the truth. They want constant reassurance that what they "believe" is the truth.
Enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or being happier. Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth. It's seeing through the facade of pretense. It is the complete eradication of everything we imagined to be true.
-Adyashanti, The End of Your World
Our Natural State Is Inherently Peaceful
Whatever we do in the pursuit of truth, happiness and reality takes us away from our own natural state which is always already there. It's not something we can acquire, attain, or accomplish as a result of our efforts. All that we do makes it impossible for what is already there to express itself. That is why I call this our natural state. We are always in that state. What prevents what is there from expressing itself in its own way is the search. The search is always in the wrong direction.
Would you rather be happy because of something, or because of nothing?
Spiritual seeking will not save us from suffering and confusion. It only allows us to understand that avoidance of pain does not help. The search only succeeds in destroying the sensitivity and intelligence of the nervous system. Wanting what does not exist -- the romantic, religious, spiritual stuff -- the illusion of ultimate fulfillment, only adds momentum to that false continuity, which destroys the body. It is radically disturbing the chemical balance of the body.
The body is not interested in psychological or spiritual matters. Highly praised spiritual experiences are of no value to the organism. In fact, they are painful to the body. Love, compassion, understanding, bliss -- all these ideas which religion and psychology have placed before man are only adding to the strain of the body. All cultures, whether of the Orient or of the Occidental, have created this lopsided situation for mankind and turned man into a neurotic individual.
Life is a Mystery Not Knowing is Our Natural State
We will never know what life is. Nobody can say anything about life. Life is a mystery. We can give definitions but those definitions have no meaning. We can theorize about life but that is a thing which is not of any value to us. It cannot help us to understand anything. When the question burns itself out what is there is energy. We can't say anything about that energy. It is already manifesting itself, expressing itself in a boundless way. It has no limitations, no boundaries. It is not within or without. It is not yours, not mine. It belongs to everybody. We are part of that. We are an expression of that. Just as the flower is an expression of life, we are another expression of life.
The Sound of the Rain Needs No Translation
All spiritual, mystical experiences, are born of thought. They are thought-induced, states, nothing more. All notions and attachments to Love, Happiness, and Bliss, only block the natural energy of existence. We have to accept the absurdity of depending on anything for happiness. Experiential happiness comes and goes. We can't be anything other than what you are at any given moment. To be ourselves is easy. We don't have to do anything to be ourselves. But to become something other than what we are we have to do a lot of things that are unnatural and stressful.
A Happy person is not interested in Happiness. A well fed man is not in search of food. To be what you Are is fulfilling. The understanding that there is nothing to understand..There is nowhere to go and nothing to do but to be what we Are, is all there is. Be yourself and thereafter, whatever potential there is within you will flower naturally.
Seeking is Mind Made and Mind is a Myth
There is no such "thing" as God. It is the mind that out of fear has created the "idea" of God. Fear is passed on from generation to generation. What is there is fear, not God. If you are lucky enough to be free from fear then there is no need for a "God" idea. There is no ultimate reality, no God, nothing. Fear itself is the problem, not God. Wanting to be free from fear is itself fear. You see, we love fear. The ending of fear is death and we don't want that to happen. I am not talking about the body's natural instincts, they are necessary for survival. The death of fear is the only death.
Love Itself is the Actual Form of God
When you actually do see and perceive for the first time that there is no God to realize, no psyche to purify, no soul to liberate, it will come as a tremendous shock to that thought instrument. You have invested everything in that -- the soul, mind, psyche, whatever you wish to call it -- and suddenly it is exploded as a myth. It is difficult to look at your actual situation. One look does the trick. The very instrument that we are using to free ourselves from the thing called "mind" is the mind. Mind is nothing other than what we are doing to free ourselves from the mind. When it dawns on you by chance or miracle that the instrument we are using to understand everything is not the instrument, and that there is no other instrument and there is nothing to understand, it hits you like a bolt of lightning. What is left is the tremendous living organism with an intelligence of its own. What you are left with is the pulse, the beat and the throb of life.
The majority of men have not yet acquired the maturity to be independent, to be rational, to be objective. They need myths and idols to endure the fact that man is all by himself, that there is no authority which gives meaning to life except man himself. Man represses the irrational passions of destructiveness, hate, envy, revenge; he worships power, money, the sovereign state, the nation; while he pays lip service to the teachings of the great spiritual leaders of the human race, those of Buddha, the prophets, Socrates, Jesus, Mohammed — he has transformed these teachings into a jungle of superstition and idol-worship.
You Will Never Transcend Mind With Mind
Examine your pattern of seeking and you will notice how it does not work. Notice that if you are not with objects, relations or states that you find pleasurable you begin to feel unHappy, Dis-eased, Dis-oriented, and driven and so you begin to Seek. You try and find some other relation, some other object, some other state, some other possibility. Even God, guru's or mystical experiences, ordinarily considered to be spiritual or religious, become objects of your seeking.
Desire is part of the mind. Eventually you will seek Freedom. The final desire. Because it is the last desire it becomes very intense. All the energies that were involved in desires for status, power and fame, money, food & sex, or spiritual experiences, become concentrated on this one single desire. The desire for Freedom. When the mind no longer seeks this final object of Attention, it becomes permanently fulfilled. All effort comes to an end. All movement in the direction of getting something comes to an end. All wanting, be it this wanting, or that wanting, becomes totally absent. There is no hunger. As long as you are operating in the field of what is called the 'pair of opposites' -- good and bad, likes and you will always be choosy in every situation. You cannot help doing that. That is the dilemma and you can't do it. So how to change?
Weak desires can be removed by introspection and meditation, but strong, deep-rooted ones must be fulfilled and their fruits, sweet or bitter, tasted. ~ Nisargadatta
It does not matter what the object of that search is -- God, a beautiful man or woman, whatsoever -- it is all the same search and that hunger will never be satisfied. I guarantee you that as long as you are searching for happiness you will remain unhappy. The search itself is the cause of the unhappiness. That hunger must burn itself out completely without knowing satisfaction. The thirst you have must burn itself out without being quenched. The search gives way to something else when it dawns on you that this is not the way and it is finished.
Once the body organism has freed itself from the strangle-hold of thought, anything you do to try to bring about peace and harmony there only creates disharmony and violence. It is like using war to create peace in a peaceful world. When the search comes to an end it comes to an end with a big bang, as it were. Then peace is not something that can be practiced or taught.
Life has no meaning. Rejoice! It has no meaning. Dance, sing, enjoy! It has no meaning. You need not be serious. It is a cosmic joke! What is there to get? But the achieving mind is always trying to get something, even out of a joke!
What is the purpose of life? Does life have any purpose or meaning? You are either satisfied or not. A hungry man will do anything and everything to satisfy his hunger and eventually he will discover that there is nothing he can do to satisfy it. The hope must go that some miracle will happen and that it will descend upon you from somewhere. 'Hope' is masked fear seeking to assure itself. The illusion of ultimate fulfillment. If there is nothing you can 'do' to satisfy your hunger, something will happen. All those to whom this kind of thing has happened have really worked hard, touched rock bottom, staked everything. It is simple, but it does not come easy. It is not handed over to you on a silver platter. You have to become completely disillusioned. You have to give up all hope.
Surrender and Transcend the Ego with Love
Giving up hope does not mean hopelessness. The more willing you are to embrace what makes you most uncomfortable, the closer you come to this edge -- where you feel most raw -- least in control -- most vulnerable. If you embrace yourself at this edge and rest at this point, everything will begin to shift. The problem comes from the fact that you are interested in experiencing bliss.
There is no such thing as an experience here. Imagination, based on willful conceptual illusions of happiness (hope) must come to an end. The absence of imagination, the absence of will, the absence of all efforts, the absence of all movement in any direction, on any level, in any dimension, that is the thing. That is the thing that cannot be experienced at all -- it is not an experience, it is effortless, here and now. You can not make or will it to happen. it is unconditional. Absence of "hope" is a state of opening to what is. A door to lightness, spontaneity, to the end of fear.
You think that there is somebody, some "you" who is thinking your thoughts. Somebody who is feeling your feelings. That is the illusion. That is the crux of the whole problem. The one that is looking at what you call the "self" -- IS the self. It is creating an illusory division of itself into subject and object. As long as you want to understand yourself, or to change "yourself" into something spiritual, into something holy, beautiful or marvelous, "you" will continue to seek and suffer. What you are seeking does not exist. You think that there is something more interesting than what you are doing. If that thinking dissolves then everything that you are doing becomes very interesting.
Reality Is Always Already the Case
True Happiness is prior to pleasure and need. Prior to "experience". Happiness cannot have a cause. Only Un-happiness can have a cause. Un-happiness always has a cause and that cause is always an "object". Desiring and fearing are two of the main ways that consciousness maintains its "self"-contraction as an apparent "separate" entity.
As consciousness sees clearly that the entire spectrum of this projection takes place within itself, it no longer separates it into "me" and "other". It sees all things "clearly" in and as itself. The mind does not find understanding, it dies in it. The thought that seeks Reality comes to its own limit and plunges into Reality. It dies in that which it was seeking and its dissolution is the revelation of that ever present Reality. The end of the desire is the end of the agitation. The agitation called "seeking" which veils our inherent happiness.
Thoughts are just thoughts; they are neither good or bad. Words, ideas and knowledge, on this website, or from books, teachers or teachings are not an answer. They may be pointers. They may raise questions. But there are certainly no answers.
Who are You Beyond Recycled "Points of View"
"We seldom realize, for example, that our most private thoughts and emotions are not actually our own. For we think in terms of languages and images which we did not invent, but which were given to us by our society. We copy emotional reactions from our parents, learning from them that excrement is supposed to have a disgusting smell and that vomiting is supposed to be an unpleasant sensation. The dread of death is also learned from their anxieties about sickness and from their attitudes to funerals and corpses. Our social environment has this power just because we do not exist apart from a society. Society is our extended mind and body. Yet the very society from which the individual is inseparable is using its whole irresistible force to persuade the individual that he is indeed separate! Society as we now know it is therefore playing a game with self-contradictory rules.``
― Alan Wilson Watts,
"Samsara is difficult to escape from not because we are imprisoned by demons or some such, but because we hold on to its familiarity, and to our misunderstanding of self, and because we don’t know how to rest in discomfort in order to go beyond the identity we’ve spent a whole life time building up."
- Dungse Jampal Norbu
Riding on the Wings of a Concept
“There have been many teachings, by the various saints, sages and realizers throughout the ages, who have appeared and disappeared.
There have been so many saints, sages and gurus and each has been enamored by a particular concept that he wanted the world to know about. Ultimately the different teachings were individual concepts, which supported the individual concepts which appealed to the consciousness of a particular individual at a particular time. One who has understood one's mystery as to what is, that one will not discuss or argue the largeness or smallness of anybody.
The feeling of having understood and relief gained from suffering that gets associated with a Guru or teaching, is likely to lead one into the sense of illusion, because the individual thinks he has found something to hold onto and enthusiastically import to others. It is a first step, but it is very easy to get totally lost when juggling words and concepts by attaching too much importance to them. People have many questions and they think, after a while, they know something, but when they finally know, there will be no questions to ask and the realization will occur that everything is happening on its own and therefore there is no more concern for it“.
~ Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
Consider this. The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule it.
“My teaching, if that is the word you want to use, has no copyright. You are free to reproduce, distribute, interpret, misinterpret, distort, garble, do what you like, even claim authorship, without my consent or the permission of anybody”.
- U.G. Krishnamurti -
U.G. Insisted that this statement be placed in any books that were published of his conversations or statements. He said he did not want to exploit the suffering of a gullible public by coming up with just another teaching… He insisted that the teachings or “the solutions” of mankind create “the problem” that never existed in the first place…. that “the looking” creates the idea that something is absent. “The looking” has been programmed into us by the teaching and teachers of society. He would say “the looking” therefore is the problem.
He also said “stop looking, start living”. Nothing is absent.
Is your body the cosmos or not? Yes or no?
Before Chatral Rinpoche passed, a disciple asked him, "How will the rise and fall of the Dharma be like in the future?"
Chatral Rinpoche replied, "Support and take refuge in those spiritual masters who focus their practice in solitary retreat. Before one attains enlightenment, one should also enter into solitary retreat to focus on one's practice under his or her close guidance and mentorship. If not, it will be just like now, where everywhere is flooded with Khenpos who give empty talks. Those ignorant ones, who run after fame and fortune, and establish their own factions, will cause people to have aversion for Buddhism and lead to the extinction of Buddhism sooner or later. Hence, it is said that the authentic Dharma is not in the monasteries, it is not in the books and not in the material world, but within the mind. There is a need to awaken it through practice and to realize (actualize) it, in order to be called the continuation or preservation of the Dharma."
Love & Compassion
“We can reject everything else: religion, ideology, all received wisdom. But we cannot escape the necessity of love and compassion. This, then, is my true religion, my simple faith. In this sense, there is no need for temple or church, for mosque or synagogue, no need for complicated philosophy, doctrine or dogma. Our own heart, our own mind, is the temple. The doctrine is compassion. Love for others and respect for their rights and dignity, no matter who or what they are: ultimately these are all we need."
- Dalai Lama
Learning how to love is the goal and the purpose of spiritual life, not learning how to develop psychic powers, not learning how to bow, chant, do yoga, or even meditate, but learning to love. Love is the truth. Some say love Itself is the Actual form of God. Wisdom is inherent in all of us and love is the embodiment of this transcendent truth.
To Thine Own Self Be True
"A true leader does not seek followers, he wants to teach others how to be leaders. He does not want control, he wants the truth. He does not impose his leadership on others, nor does he take away anyone's autonomy. He inspires by love, not coercion. When it comes time to take credit, he makes himself invisible; but he is the first to arrive at the time of need, and he will never shrink away in fear. He is so passionate about your welfare that when you consult him for guidance, it is like coming face to face with yourself for the first time."
Rebbe Menachem M Schneerson (Lubavitcher Rebbe)
Over the years, I've experienced many charasmatic "teachers" that became personality cults. They use their picture (murti), along with every "quote" to associate their image with wisdom. A form of hypnotic marketing, directed at our vulnerabilities and need for an authority figure. Devotional branding. Students get attached and become ridiculously star struck dependent, often hysterical, putting teachers on a god-like pedestal, much like a child does with their parent.
"There are more fake guides, teachers in the world than stars. The real guide is the one who makes you see your inner beauty, not the one who wants to be admired and followed."
The supreme sign of a great practitioner is not that he sprouts a halo, has extraordinarily auspicious dreams, experiences bliss continuously, or can foresee our miserable futures. The supreme sign is that he no longer has any interest in material gain, fame, the respect of others, or being the center of attention.
Most People do not see their beliefs, instead, their beliefs tell them what to see. This is the difference between clarity and confusion.
Do not believe a thing because another man has said it was true. Do not believe in words because they are hallowed by tradition. Find out the truth for yourself. Reason it out. That is realization.
― Swami Vivekananda
“The obedient always think about themselves as virtuous, rather than cowardly.”
- Robert Anton Wilson
When listening to intellectually consoling "talking school" gurus, or when reading their books, there is the ever-present danger of over-estimating true realization. Western students in particular, who tend to be impatient, easily fall prey to this form of self-delusion. They become convinced that they have attained realization when in truth their attainment is entirely mental. If books and gurus could truly change people, this world would quickly become a paradise.
Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.
- Rudyard Kipling
Present Moment Experience
Being aware of our core can awaken a feeling of intimacy with all life. Feel your way into being. Present moment experience is physical and body-based, not intellectual or theoretical. It is only by grounding our awareness in the living sensation of our body that our true presence can awaken. All reality exists in the here and now. This is the ultimate, complete and final truth of life. All beings exist in this present moment. It is because we have lost connection to reality in the endless pursuit of "conditional" happiness, that we have lost awareness of our primordial natural state. Our mind wanders incessantly, but our body and senses are always in the present. To investigate our embodied experience is to investigate the living present.
Don't Mistake Understanding for Realization, Don't Mistake Realization for Liberation
"Forget about enlightenment. Sit down wherever you are and listen to the wind singing in your veins. Feel the love, the longing, the fear in your bones. Open your heart to who you are, right now, not who you would like to be, not the saint you are striving to become, but the being right here before you, inside you, around you. All of you is holy. You are already more and less than whatever you can know. Breathe out, Touch in, Let go."
~ John Welwood ~
When the body-Mind no longer tries to connect the sense organs with their respective (conceptual) "objects" of Attention, it becomes permanently fulfilled.
The only answer to this human problem, if there is an answer, is not to be found through new ideas, books, concepts or ideologies, but by bringing about a shift in the fear-oriented, stress chemistry patterning of the human body. By learning to feel our way into being, into living present, ever-changing reality. Without being perpetually dependent on the "security patterning" of familiar, fear-based, fixed "points of view."
Our mind wanders incessantly, but our body and senses are always in the present. To investigate our embodied experience is to investigate the living present.
Informational healing means that we take in information on a cognitive, conscious level and it may make sense to us, but it's not reaching or being absorbed by our subconsious programming. Our subconscious is not interested in logical information, it responds to visceral (fascia) feelings. Which is where transformational healing takes place.
Only by getting in touch with your body, by connecting viscerally with yourself, can you regain a sense of who you are, your priorities and values.
No matter how much insight and understanding we develop, the rational brain is basically impotent to talk the emotional brain out of its reality.
- Bessel van der Kolk, The Body Keeps Score
Fully embodied existence is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, not some promise of a permanent beatific state. The great wisdom dwells in the body, fully away from all thoughts. It is only by grounding our awareness in the living sensation of our body that our true presence can awaken.
"So the secret is just to say 'Yes!' and jump off from here. Then there is no problem. It means to be yourself, always yourself, without sticking to an old self."
-Shunryu Suzuki Roshi
Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes ... because for those who love with heart and soul ...there is no separation.
In the future, medical doctors and psychiatrists will explain the effects of happiness on health. In happiness you do not have high blood pressure. In happiness, people do not have heart attacks and strokes. Only unhappy people have these conditions. Only those who made others unhappy are stricken. We become happy because our whole body and aura becomes harmonious and beautiful. We understand each other better in happiness than in anger and revenge.
If two people are really happy, they will understand each other. Unhappy people are those who make others unhappy. Usually, these unhappy people are fearful, angry, revengeful, jealous, and they use malice, slander, and treason. If you examine the bottom line, you will see that they are very unhappy people, and they are now taking revenge on themselves. They are making themselves unhappy.
-Torkom Saraydarian, Happiness, Joy & Bliss
One might have practiced on a spiritual path for thirty years, or one might be walking through a dappled wood, or one might have just met a friend who will be a friend forever – suddenly love is present, arriving unexpectedly, as a tender feeling, a fragrance in the heart.
— Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
"You cannot touch the depths of another until you have touched the depths of your own soul.
If you love yourself for your achievements, your current assets, the way you do things and handle the world—and despise yourself for failure in the same—it follows that your relationship with another will also be transient and superficial.
To achieve deep and lasting love of another person, you need to first experience the depth within yourself—an inner core that doesn’t change with time or events.
If it is the true essence, it is an essence shared by the other person as well, and deep love becomes unavoidable."
- Rabbi Tzvi Freeman
"It’s quite a job starting to love somebody. You have to have energy, generosity, and blindness. There is even a moment, in the very beginning, when you have to jump across a precipice: if you think about it you don’t do it."
- Jean-Paul Sartre
"It happens only sometimes.
Millions and millions of people live in the false attitude that they are lovers.
They believe that they love, but that is their belief only.
Love is a rare flowering.
Sometimes it happens, it is rare because it can happen only when there is no fear, never before.
That means love can happen only to a very deeply spiritual, religious person.
Sex is possible for all.
Acquaintance is possible for all.
When you are not afraid, then there is nothing to hide, then you can be open, then you can withdraw all boundaries.
And then you can invite the other to penetrate you to the very core.
And remember, if you allow somebody to penetrate you deeply, the other will allow you to penetrate into himself or herself, because when you allow somebody to penetrate you, TRUST IS CREATED.
When you are not afraid, the other becomes fearless.
In your love, fear is always there.
The husband is afraid of the wife, the wife is afraid of the husband.
Lovers are always afraid.
Then it is not love.
Then it is just an arrangement of two fearful persons depending on each other, fighting, exploiting, manipulating, controlling, dominating, possessing - but it is not love.
If you can allow love to happen, there is no need for prayer, there is no need for meditation, there is no need for any church, any temple.
You can completely forget God if you can love - because through love, everything will have happened to you: meditation, prayer, God.
EVERYTHING will have happened to you.
That's what Jesus means when he says: Love is God.
But love is difficult.
Fear has to be dropped.
And this is the strange thing, that you are so afraid and you have nothing to lose."
- Osho, The Joy of Living Dangerously
Why is there so much violence in the world?
“Because of too much repression. The mechanism must be understood.... Now everyone's civilized, cultured.
The child inside you was crushed, completely crushed. Civilization is like a monster: keep killing and murdering the child inside you. Everything natural has been perverted; everything natural has been condemned. There are reasons for that. For example, every culture, every society, has to go through many wars. If sex is not suppressed, an army cannot be created.
A soldier has to suppress his sex; only then the same energy becomes the energy of fighting. No country allows its soldiers to take their wives and girlfriends to the front – except the United States. And America will be defeated everywhere because then there is no accumulated energy. A soldier needs frustrated energy. If he has a girlfriend or wife with him, he is satisfied. Why would he fight ?
Have you ever noticed? Whenever you delete sex, more anger happens. Go and look at your monks, your so-called sadhus, and you will always find them angry. Anger is their lifestyle now because they have been suppressing sex. Suppress sex: then energy gotta be released from somewhere.
If you close one door, another door opens immediately – and the other door will be perverted. The first one was natural. Close the second door, so the third door opens – the third will be even more perverted. And when you open the room, you'll be in hospice.
All societies use sexual energy; that's why all societies are against sex. If everybody's sex is done, happy, beautiful, who bother fighting?
You can't send hippies to war. The only reason they are so happy, living their life so naturally that not only they won't. they manifest with signs - 'Make love, not wars'. And they are right. If people can love, war will disappear from the world. "
Osho, When Conditioning Drops You Are Free
True Love is Not a Painful Obsession
"As long as we believe that someone else has the power to make us happy then we are setting ourselves up to be victims. One of the biggest problems with relationships in this society is that the context we approach them from is too small. We were taught that getting the relationship is the goal. It starts in early childhood with Fairy Tales where the Prince and the Princess live happily-ever-after. It continues in movies and books where “boy meets girl” “boy loses girl” “boy gets girl back” – the music swells and the happy couple ride off into the sunset. The songs that say “I can’t smile without you” “I can’t live without you” “You are my everything” describe the type of love we learned about growing up – toxic love – an addiction with the other person as our drug of choice, as our Higher Power.
Any time we set another human being up to be our Higher Power we are going to experience failure in whatever we are trying to accomplish. We will end up feeling victimized by the other person or by our self – and even when we feel victimized by the other person we blame our self for the choices we made. We are set up to fail to get our needs met in Romantic Relationships because of the belief system we were taught in childhood and the messages we got from our society growing up. There is no goal to reach that will bring us to happily-ever-after. We are not incomplete until we find our soul mate. We are not halves that cannot be whole without a relationship.
True Love is not a painful obsession. It is not taking a hostage or being a hostage. It is not all-consuming, isolating, or constricting. Believing we can’t be whole or happy without a relationship is unhealthy and leads us to accept deprivation and abuse, and to engage in manipulation, dishonesty, and power struggles. The type of love we learned about growing up is an addiction, a form of toxic love. As long as our definition of a successful relationship is one that lasts forever – we are set up to fail. As long as we believe that we have to have the other in our life to be happy, we are really just an addict trying to protect our supply – using another person as our drug of choice. That is not True Love – nor is it Loving."
When two people have nothing to hide, no one to impress, nothing to lose, no games left to play, no attachment to outcomes ...real connection and intimacy happens.
"True intimacy is only possible through vulnerability, which means being honest about who I am. Nobody likes to be manipulated, and that’s what our social masks are designed to do: manipulate other people’s opinions and behaviour in our favour. But a sensitive, open heart can feel through the facade, and one’s carefully prepared fictions don’t interest an open heart. We yearn to feel the truth in one another. The Real. We ache for The Real. Authenticity and vulnerability can be wildly sexy because they are acts of openly offering ourselves as Real as we come. Besides, when you see me honour and share my Real you feel more comfortable to honour and share yours. In that dance, intimacy is inevitable."
H. DILGO KHYENTSE RINPOCHE
"The everyday practice of dzogchen is simply to develop a complete carefree acceptance, an openness to all situations without limit.
We should realise openness as the playground of our emotions and relate to people without artificiality, manipulation or strategy.
We should experience everything totally, never withdrawing into ourselves as a marmot hides in its hole. This practice releases tremendous energy which is usually constricted by the process of maintaining fixed reference points. Referentiality is the process by which we retreat from the direct experience of everyday life.
Being present in the moment may initially trigger fear. But by welcoming the sensation of fear with complete openness, we cut through the barriers created by habitual emotional patterns.
When we engage in the practice of discovering space, we should develop the feeling of opening ourselves out completely to the entire universe. We should open ourselves with absolute simplicity and nakedness of mind. This is the powerful and ordinary practice of dropping the mask of self-protection.
We shouldn't make a division in our meditation between perception and field of perception. We shouldn't become like a cat watching a mouse. We should realise that the purpose of meditation is not to go "deeply into ourselves" or withdraw from the world. Practice should be free and non-conceptual, unconstrained by introspection and concentration.
Vast unoriginated self-luminous wisdom space is the ground of being - the beginning and the end of confusion. The presence of awareness in the primordial state has no bias toward enlightenment or non-enlightenment. This ground of being which is known as pure or original mind is the source from which all phenomena arise. It is known as the great mother, as the womb of potentiality in which all things arise and dissolve in natural self-perfectedness and absolute spontaneity.
All aspects of phenomena are completely clear and lucid. The whole universe is open and unobstructed - everything is mutually interpenetrating.
Seeing all things as naked, clear and free from obscurations, there is nothing to attain or realise. The nature of phenomena appears naturally and is naturally present in time-transcending awareness. Everything is naturally perfect just as it is. All phenomena appear in their uniqueness as part of the continually changing pattern. These patterns are vibrant with meaning and significance at every moment; yet there is no significance to attach to such meanings beyond the moment in which they present themselves.
This is the dance of the five elements in which matter is a symbol of energy and energy a symbol of emptiness. We are a symbol of our own enlightenment. With no effort or practice whatsoever, liberation or enlightenment is already here."
**Excerpts from Dzogchen Practice in Everyday Life
Develop a mind that is vast like space, where experiences both pleasant and unpleasant can appear and dissappear without conflict, struggle or harm. Rest in a mind like vast sky.
'Seeing the truth as it is, is the goal as well as the path. Confused existence, or samsara, is a complex situation based on passion, aggression, and ignorance. Its essence is turmoil. But unless you relate to passion, aggression, and ignorance as the path—understanding them, working with them, and treading on them—you will not discover the goal. By discovering the truth of confusion, or samsara, you are also discovering peace, or nirvana—freedom from confusion. Truth does not depend on formulas or alternative answers, but truth is seen to be one truth without relativity.'
-Chögyam Trungpa, The Path of Individual Liberation: The Profound Treasury of the Ocean of Dharma
"Buddha nature can be summed up in one word: courage, especially the courage to simply be the way we are, here, now, with all our doubts and uncertainties.”
- Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche -
Wherever you go, there you are.
“If we run a hundred miles an hour to the other end of the continent in order to get away from the obstacle, we find the very same problem waiting for us when we arrive. It just keeps returning with new names, forms, manifestations until we learn whatever it has to teach us — about where we are separating ourselves from reality, how we are pulling back instead of opening up, and closing down instead of allowing ourselves to experience fully whatever we encounter without hesitating or retreating into ourselves.”
— Pema Chödrön
“If your everyday practice is to open your emotions to all the people you meet, to all situations you encounter without closing down, trusting that you can do that - then that will take you as far as you can go. And then you’ll understand all the teachings that anyone has ever taught.”
~ Pema Chödrön
Touch: by Bubba Free John
"Touch is precisely the dimension in which you must become awake. You must transcend the intellectualizable senses of sight and hearing and so forth. Samadhi is simply a matter of passing through all the internal lights and sounds and visions associated with the intellectual senses into the domain of the sense of touch where all the intellectual senses are suspended. At the level of touch we read the very condition of the nervous system in space. But, as touch, that condition is blind, it is prior to the usual body sense, prior to all the intellectually organized complexity of inwardness. Inwardness vanishes, and what is seen is at the skin level. Our contraction from infinity can possibly even be measured in terms of electrical activity at the skin level. It is only when the sense of touch becomes Enlightened that the subtle activity at the level of the skin achieves the Native State and permits bodily intercourse with the Infinite Radiance.
The ultimate dimension or mode of the nervous system is cognized at the level of touch, not via the intellectual senses-which include all the senses except touch. You propose, in your egoic fashion, to go about exploiting the intellectual senses, the receptor senses, which can be associated with higher person contemplation, in separation from the physical. Yet, separation from the physical is basically separation from the sense of touch. You tend to exploit these other senses because the surface of your being is not entirely released though touch into infinite Radiance. Your neurosis is reflected at the level of touch, in your avoidance of relationship, your contraction of the sense of touch. You recoil, you turn upon yourself toward the inward part. Therefore, you principally violate the organization of the being relative to the sense of touch, or simple, whole-bodily surrender.
You are least conscious of the dimension of touch. You think information comes first through these intellectual senses such as vision-and all the games you play with these senses which are associated with higher imagination. But long before you see, the very surface of the eyeballs is contracted by fear. The very surface of the brain is contracted. The extremity as well as the root of the nervous system is contracted. The very presentation of the whole/bodily being is fundamentally contracted. Thus, the media of the body/mind all provide information qualified by a fundamental error of the whole bodily being at the level of its most basic presentation.
The Way is founded on touch. Only when the whole body, or the total surface of the body is Enlightened, rather that when some isolated part is stimulated, can you fully involve yourself in the sense of touch. The whole body is associated with touch. All the other organs of sensation are creepy little internal senses and yogis always exploit these sensors. They do not take up the Way of touch, which is founded in the whole-body sense of touch.
Thus, the liberation, the Enlightenment, of the sense of touch and not its inversion-is the vehicle of the Way. Touch transcends all the other dimensions of sensation and awareness. Touch transcends sight and sound and all the mystical experiences that can be realized through the inversion of any of the other senses. You can experience all kinds of visions of the Great Being by inverting the sense of sight, but an entirely other dimension is revealed when the dimension of touch is liberated, freed from the subtle effort of contraction that separates the body at the skin level. The whole-body being resumes its fundamental presentation of itself prior to inwardness and recoil from the universal design and from its own Being and Radiance, its Condition in Truth."
UNIVERSAL DESIRE AND THE WAY OF TOUCH
Written in Laughing Man Magazine by Bubba Free John (8/14/79)
Wound of Love
“Sooner or later, if we are on any classic “spiritual schedule,” some event, person, death, idea, or relationship will enter our lives that we simply cannot deal with using our present skill set, our acquired knowledge, or our strong willpower. It will probably have to do with one of what I call the Big Six: love, death, suffering, sexuality, infinity, and God. Spiritually speaking, we will be led to the edge of our own private resources. At that point we will stumble over a necessary stumbling stone...We will and must “lose” at something. This is the only way that Life–Fate–God–Grace–Mystery can get us to change, let go of our egocentric preoccupations, and go on the further and larger journey.
There is no practical or compelling reason to leave one’s present comfort zone in life. If it’s working for us, why would we? Nor can we force ourselves into the second stage of disorder (though we must certainly be open to it). Any conscious attempt to engineer or plan our own enlightenment is doomed to failure because it will be ego driven. We will try to “succeed” in the midst of our failure and “order” our time in disorder! But unexpected weaknesses, failure, and humiliation force us to go where we never would otherwise. We must stumble and be brought to our knees by reality. “God comes to you disguised as your life,” as my friend Paula D’Arcy wisely says. We must actually be out of the driver’s seat for a while, or we will never learn how to give up control to the Real Guide. It is the necessary pattern.”
"When tenderness tinged by sadness touches our heart, we know that we are in contact with reality." ~ Chogyam Trungpa
"It is only through letting our heart break that we discover something unexpected: the heart cannot actually break, it can only break open. When we feel both our love for this world and the pain of this world-together, at the same time-the heart breaks out of its shell. To live with an open heart is to experience life full-strength."
― John Welwood
Enlightenment is egos ultimate disappointment.
The bad news is you're falling through the air, nothing to hang on to, no parachute. The good news is there's no ground.
So, are you having a spiritual awakening?
You lost all your "friends"? You can no longer work a "regular" job and your family thinks you are crazy? Congratulations!
You escaped the matrix!
Go to the Limits of Your Longing
"God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
Then walks with us silently out of the night.
These are the words we dimly hear.
You, send out beyond your recall.
Go the limits of your longing.
Flare up like a flame
And make big shadows I can move in.
Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don’t let yourself lose me.
Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.
Give me your hand".