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Tim Rimmer
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Hi tucson Nice to see your comment. Hope you are well.
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Well this thread is digging into some interesting stuff. First up - Brian can you add some page numbers and references to your quotes, then folk could verify them easier? I do agree with what you’re saying. My take on RSSB was that the Guru, ‘Sat Guru’, was very much considered to be a PLM as well as GIHF. For me, this was like a major selling point for the path, as different from others where these titles were less obvious. Perhaps another selling point was that this path was essentially about Bhakti - being so much in-love with the ‘other’ that one forgets oneself completely ….. - surrendered. It’s my view that this set the bar too high for most of us. Maybe that’s why GSD adjusted the teachings - as has been discussed here many times. The apparent move away from traditional Bhakti, soul/God, drop/Ocean duality to a more soul/shabd/consciousness interchangeable ‘same thing scenario’ (as I interpreted the last RSSB literature I read), provides weight to the view that not only Masters/Gurus are GIHF - we all are. If one considers consciousness/shabd/soul as = to God, and if God = everything then surely we must all be GIHF? Well that’s my view (as a believer in the totality of consciousness). Genuine Gurus and such just spend less time than us self-referencing themselves as separate entities and more time operating in the now. This would indicate there’s obviously a spectrum of Guruship from the partially separated through to the fully connected. Jim - nice to hear from you. Great internal trip advisory. Um - I found your initiation comments interesting. The price we pay for love? I read this the other day in Nisargadatta’s ‘I am that’: ‘mind creates the abyss, the heart crosses it’ (p.8) Best wishes.
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Taking a slightly different tack, I’ll comment on two words Brian used that stood out in this post - ‘highly dualistic’ - not just dualistic, but highly so. Perhaps it’s because in time people who give RSSB a fair go realise that it’s essentially a non-dual perspective that starts to dawn, and this does not gel with the teachings, which IMO, they have to ‘let go of’. This is certainly enough to create psychological disturbance, let alone all the potential guilt/dissatisfaction with not achieving goals etc… Brian has not added a ‘because’ to his assertion, but leaves us to consider several generalised points and reflect on our own experience and observations (for me, now deep in the memory banks). A couple come to mind: Brian comments on a seeming lack of compassion/sensitivity to others needs some satsangi types display - likely because they are steadfast rule followers and see themselves as ‘saved’ while others are seen as ‘worldly’. As a follow-on, this also manifested as a distinct lack of interest/action in environmental/social justice matters. When you have a teaching emphasising that the world is a latrine and your job is to escape it, obviously one is not going to put in much effort to look after it. (And as the planet loses its capacity for life support this surely makes it harder to still down the associated mental and emotional angst, that’s affecting many these days). I believe much of this can be traced to the key dualistic set up of several religions not just RSSB - the notion that this ‘soul’ thing is separated from God and needs to get back/be reunited. Dogma says this is the case. A degree of experience and maturity can provide different realisations based on existing connection, and much less emphasis on struggling separation.
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Apparently this fell out of the pocket of a recently discovered old Monk’s habit: There was a fine scholar called Ockham Who sifted the gold from the flotsam, But in the heat of debate, He got quite irate, And said to his foes he’d be choppin’ em!
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Hi folks Talking about nature and nurture, and where humanity is at. Check out this hilarious over the top vid from the Black Keys. https://youtu.be/KKSmHOUaqaQ
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Hi Ron I’ve been enjoying reading your comments re the Harris post (and others). I think many of us would now agree that this so-called self that thinks and makes ‘decisions’ about ‘it’s’ life really is just something composed of and created by a lifetime (maybe lifetimes) of memories, conditioning, and stories/interpretations made up by itself to justify its existence. I agree however that it’s not necessary, practical nor possible? for this I to be wiped altogether while alive. The trick like you say is to take a Zen approach and see it as something to be understood (I.e. put into perspective) with obvious usefulness. I like when Harris talks of recognition of the non-dual state. I think he is careful not to say using this method or that, I or you will recognise this state, as clearly, the normal I we identify with is no longer there to do the recognising. For me this is the core of all the seeking, path travelling, inquiry etc. The recognition of reality as it is prior to our mind’s intervention. Pre-discursive. Simple in theory, much harder in practice. That which has thought it has lived and been real for a lifetime doesn’t like the idea of being unimportant, impermanent, or worse - not being. I believe Harris’ approach to use ‘momentary mindfulness’ is good as a ‘method’ . As a Roshi said (as I remember) enlightenment is a moment to moment state. Again very simple in theory. For me there definitely is a resonance when Harris says: ‘In this moment is there something you can be aware of that is synonymous with freedom?…… the search actually is over in this moment…’ There’s a lot of juice in this sentence imo.
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Hail AR Aye that’s as fine an explanation as any for whether it’s loss/expansion - depends on what hemisphere you’re in! Haha - good one. You raise some cool points in your recent post. Re loss/expansion of self being the same thing? Certainly seems that way to me. Here’s my take on it - a number of those commenting on this blog quite likely see the self as illusory. Essentially (this ‘self) is just a bunch of thoughts. In ‘seeing’ that this is the case the usual, separate, ‘I’ self is lost so to speak. Looking at it in energetic terms: as identification with this I lessens, the energy involved in holding on to it is freed up and can be experienced as expansiveness. As you may know, this can happen to varying degrees in meditation. Hence, I would say the two things are more or less the same. Rodney Smith puts it this way: ‘Returning to the thought and the thinker, as the thought is surrendered, the word comes to an end but not the energy contained in the thought. The energy within the thought now becomes available as formless awareness’, (Awakening, p.48). Likewise In The Recognition Sutras, Wallis talks about how experiences (and the I’s take on them) are ‘digested’: ‘We can choose to be fully present with it, relax into it and even embrace it (without identifying with it and without making a story about it), and in this way we open the door to experiencing it as a form of divine Consciousness’ p.247 - I.e.Awareness/expansiveness. Two authors with a good handle on this imo. Is this loss of self thing something to be desired? Well yes and no in my experience - it seemingly wakes one up but then there’s been this hankering that goes on in the background, well for me anyway. However, folk on this blog probably suffer the same ‘affliction’ else they wouldn’t comment/visit. In regard to how people are affected by such experiences, I’m just finishing a really interesting book by Paul Marshall called Mystical Encounters with the Natural World (that rascal Manjit put me onto it). It’s quite academic but goes into some depth about how what Marshall calls extrovertive mystical experiences, are experienced by and how they affect people. I believe Marshall supports the case for ‘extracerebral consciousness’. In another article (no. 3 pointed out by Spencer recently) he also favours the filter theory/reducing valve take on consciousness/ brain interaction. He says: ‘Filter theory continues to have value today as a philosophical antidote to the lazy assumption that the brain manufactures consciousness. At the very least it is a heuristic device that encourages us to think more deeply about the functioning of the brain. But it could be rather more too’ ….. As to the point of all this? Well in general terms if one adheres to the view that consciousness pre-exists and is inherent in all things then perhaps the point has to do with consciousness experiencing itself in a game of hide and seek? I think this is a useful approach. However on some days I wake up and find it hard to make sense of how crazy the world is atm. Time for some food. All the best.
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Three things come to mind when I think about Descartes: In response to pondering ‘I think therefor I am’ I used to say ‘Fair enough but what am I when I’m not thinking?’ The picture of the philosophising skunk - ‘I stink therefor I am.’ There’s an old YouTube clip of the song Parabola by the band Tool (always been a bit of a progressive metal head). In it the character is walking through a dark forest - and I’ve always reckoned it’s Descartes ‘forest of doubt’! Great ending to the video by the way.
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Hey Brian When I first read of Harris’ desert experience I couldn’t help but compare it to my own many moons ago. High places in deserts are particularly conducive to loss of self type experiences imo. These days when I recall mine I consider it more about an expansion into/as Self rather than a loss of self. Of course one could look at both the set and setting of such experiences - mine was in Australia and I was really enthralled with nearby Aboriginal rock art and the ancientness of where i was - maybe I hooked into the Dreamtime? And although Harris was familiar with various meditational/religious approaches at the time perhaps his experience was conditioned by the history of the place where he was - i.e. it was a Christian history flavoured no-self experience? Just saying. As I’ve said before nothing has ‘surpassed’ my original experience over the years. It seems what’s involved is the right set up to allow for this expansion to occur. I would also say from a meditational viewpoint the less identified with thought the greater the potential for expansion. It’s good to see Spencer talking about the filter theory and consciousness (I’m really enjoying reading one of Marshall’s books atm). This is a great way to describe things, because I can make sense of it, and it gives support to the role various psychedelics can play and how this can be backed up by neuroscience. For example how the DMN ‘default mode network’ in the brain acts as a kind of centre for the self as well as a kind of consciousness valve - well that’s my current limited understanding. Best wishes to all.
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‘When we truly dissolve the remove, what's left? Just one thing. A single experience of self and world, a single continuum of feeling and sensing that kind of blurs the boundary between inside and out. Intimate with everything’. This is cool and reminds me of a YouTube clip from Adyashanti that I’ve mentioned before - ‘Allowing everything to be as it is’, when he talks about a friend’s experience of intimacy with everything as a result (4.44 mins in). It’s a bit Tai Chiiy at the start and well worth a look imo. To me the Tiver quote speaks not only to the normalness of both the process and state of meditation, but also something infinitely scaleable. From just ‘sitting’, to expanded states of non-separation - essentially that of which the mystics speak. I find it hard to believe that such states are solely the domain of electrochemical processes within the human brain. Hope everyone is doing ok
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Brian re UGK Got me thinking back to his book “The Mystique of Enlightenment” which I had a good read of several years back - Jesus - pretty full on stuff. If folk want to be put off the so-called search for truth just have a read of this. I found the first part of the book intense when he describes what happened to him before he realised his ‘natural state’. The rest of it has some great commentary on how he views things and it is quite unique imo. How Zen it is? …. Here are a few stand-out quotes: “There is no ‘I’ looking; mountains, flowers, trees, cows all look at me”, p.36 “You are a living creature, yet you lead your entire life within the realm of this isolated, parallel movement of thought”, p.43 “Every time a thought is born ‘you’ are born …. But the ‘you’ doesn’t let the thought go and what gives continuity to this ‘you’ is the thinking”, p.44 “ ….Actually there is no continuity of thought, because thoughts are disconnected, disjointed things, but something is linking them up …” p.78 “Because you think there is something more interesting than what you are doing, there is restlessness … when this is ‘knocked off’, what you are doing becomes very very interesting” p.88 “So called self-realisation is the discovery for yourself and by yourself that there is no self to discover”, p.90 “If there is a present, that present can never be experienced by you because you experience only your knowledge about the present, and that knowledge is the past” p.93 “To be free from knowledge is not an easy thing. You are that knowledge [millions of years of experiences]. Courage is to brush aside everything that man has experienced and felt before you… the end of illusion is the end of you” p.97 Cripes that’s enough, something’s starting to squirm!
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“life-denying, connection-despising, medieval Indian neo-gnostic doctrine of karma, reincarnation and "sach khand" as being detached from the rest of sentient life, and the hyper-ego-centric desire of personal liberation” - F’A - gotta be a Manjit quote! Given that it’s such a terrible path why did we all get so sucked in? (Cool pun eh?) However these days I would pretty much agree with what Manjit says particularly in regard to the dogma. Cure - Amrit Mojitos- now there’s something to savour! To me the RSSB focus on getting ‘out of this place’, definitely contributes to the apparent lack of action (observed by myself historically) of followers when it comes to putting ‘plants in the ground’ and practicing ‘compassionate action’ in the ‘real’ world. But then again some do - as AR says it’s the innate nature of some people. There are some folk in the world who are just plain old ‘good’ - kind, empathetic, socially engaged, helpful, trustworthy ….saintly, with no need for religion . This is not just the outcome of mystical experience. However, I’m with you and it’s my opinion that any mystical experience worth its salt would surely translate into action that is genuinely caring, helpful, broad ranging, integrated and operating in the here and now. As you have just said - love and compassion is mystical experience. Now milling over how I currently think about RSSB in light of your earlier comment Manjit, it’s become more of a dual scenario - either Sant Mat is way out there and the real McCoy - head and shoulders above the rest (as I once thought), or it is essentially incorrect/incomplete/another step on the journey. I’ll defer comment on the latter, though generally would no longer agree with the former. Like you, I’m of the view that mystical experience (mystical being a term for the normal state that we are but keep forgetting?) is more about connection than disconnection and being aware ‘here and now’ rather than some eternal home to strive for. In Sant Mat maybe this (connection/being always here and now with what is) is the outcome of full surrendering to the ‘inner master’ or the result of decades of many hours of meditation each day - …..don’t know. In regards to Sant Mat being only 300 yrs old, I guess it’s about how the words/interpretation of ‘the way to truth’, has been utilised. Is it about some sort of superior belief? I.e. I always used to view SM as a general term for the name of a true path (always there in some form) available to truth seekers. Presently it seems to me that there are very similar ‘mystical’ states accessed through both meditation, plant medicine and deep ecological immersion - commonalities include lessening of ‘disconnection’ and expansion of self (I prefer this to loss of self). That’s why I continue to consider soul to be a problematic term. The idea that it’s something separate is common to religions both East and West. Growing up with this notion of a ‘special but separated from God’ part of me was never challenged. Most folk just believed this to be the case and many still do. I believe awakening changes this view. Um - I think I’m starting to see your point of view a bit better. You have recently lost a close friend? Me too, he was very very dear, a mentor and the person who introduced me to RSSB. AR - re Kashmir Shaivism - a few years back Manjit told us about The Recognition Sutras by Chris Wallis - this is an amazing book. Very readable and although about a tradition, is integrated in it’s approach, though not for the faint hearted imo. Sonia - hope you are doing OK and I liked what you recently said: ‘If you can overcome your fear of death while embracing the unknown then you’ve accomplished a lot’. Pretty deep and sums up what I think many of us are about. PS - another couple of cool posts Manjit.
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Hi all I tracked this down and like Wallis’ integrated approach: …“There is one thing that exists, and we may call it God if we seek to emphasize that it is worthy of veneration and appreciation, or Awareness, if we seek to emphasize its most universal quality, or the Light of Creation, if we seek to emphasize that it is a single dynamic field of energy”, (Rec Sutras, p.151). A useful way to look at things imo. Best wishes
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Hi Sonia - nicely emoji’d. Some of the posts can get pretty heady (my posts included). Discussion of the nature of reality is a serious business! :-) Thanks for providing a joke to lighten things up a bit. I know several religious ones but they’re mostly rude. Good to see Osho throws in a few to highlight his points. One of the best ones was a sketch Brian posted a few years back where the seeker arrived at the mountain top to see the guru dressed in drag. Anyhows keep on truckin. Best wishes
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Cool to see you posting about finishing Lent’s book Brian. It seems an interesting broad ranging read based on your interpretations and quotes used. It’s a topic I also have been long interested in. I have a few comments: In the first part of your post I was surprised to read that you lump both Greek, Christian and Indian thought together as being ‘thoroughly dualistic’ (in regard to oneness). Some would argue that a lot of Western dualism stems from Greek thinkers, but labelling all Indian thought as the same is somewhat incorrect? In light of your reading of Lent, then sure it comes down to this problematic notion of the separate soul. Yet as you must know, numerous avenues towards realising oneness are found in the mystic traditions of Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism. Meister Eckhart, Sufism, Kashmir Shaivism, Ramana M, Nisargadatta and various treatises on Advaita all come to mind. Arguably Sant Mat’s ‘goal’ is non-dual realisation. Maybe I’m missing something because I’m less familiar with Taoist and Chinese philosophy? Alternately one could argue that to get a deeper understanding of ‘spirit/science’ Lent has focused on Taoism/Buddhism and not delved sufficiently into ‘Indian’ thought to get a more complete picture? For example integration of body/mind, outer/inner, head/heart, Self/self is one of the key underpinnings of Kashmir Shaivism as I understood from the Recognition Sutras. Transcendence and Immanence are not separated. In the second part of your post I was unsure whether the text in bold + sentence/small paragraph was your paraphrasing and the indented text was Lent’s, or it was all Lent’s. Lent makes good points, a key one being that there is no Boss behind it all. Fair enough. It’s fine to say consciousness is material, this also leaves the door open to say material is consciousness in my view. Does Lent explain how ‘the sacred quality of consciousness .. opens a pathway that bridges the sacred and the scientific’? Never heard of ‘gewu’, maybe I’d be able to understand it’s role in removing the distinction between the spiritual and material if I had access to the book? I’m with Lent when he makes the point in regard to the dualism created by belief in an eternal soul. This belief is problematic unless one considers soul to be Soul I.e. Soul = the totality, non-separated. When I read Lent’s take on death I couldn’t help wondering about a previous post I made in regard to consciousness being all. Lent saying ‘we, as temporary eddies of consciousness, can recognise our unity with the entire stream of life’ ….. reads to me as if he’s saying its essentially one and its all consciousness. Hi Osho, I reckon your post of 23.8 said it well. I hope things have gone smoothly after your mum’s passing and everyone is ok. BFN
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Hi AR - courteously said Mary H A L L - I’m wondering if you have an uncle called Georgy? I recognise that you have strong views in regard to Manjit’s posts. All I’ll say is calling them twaddle/mindless crap/a load of bollux doesn’t work for me. If you outlined why using the word because….. then I could pay what you say further attention. Hey Sonia - we’ve been watching a show about the Romans/Druids called ‘Britannia’ on DVD. Not sure if its the same thing as the one you watch. Britannia is completely over the top and weirdly compelling. BFN
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Hey Mary without the little lamb (someone else used to post here who was big into nursery rhymes) - I guess you’re referring to Manjit? To find what he writes interesting a) you have to read it, often more than once, and b) often, it’s useful to place it in the context of a long history of to-ing and fro-ing in regards to posters here, who were/are pretty tied up with the Indian religio/spiritual path of Sant Mat. If you are a strong believer and have things ‘sorted’ then that’s cool. If you have no interest in this path and visit the blog for various other reasons then cool. If you have questions with how the whole thing (SM) now fits your life, have concerns about the present Guru’s approach to finance or just have an open mind, then in my view what Manjit writes is often like a series of belief system broadsides, some getting terser of late. I enjoy reading what he has to say. So Manjit, thanks for your response. Here’s to the cute engagers. Maybe Brian will say something when he finishes Lent’s book? Best wishes
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Brian - a very meaty post. Got me thinking and though I don’t have the book I had a quick look at Jeremy Lent’s page about it. You say ‘It’s a big mistake to think that scientists have a narrow mechanistic perception of reality’ and that most actually don’t. I’ll take this in the context of the book and say ‘some more are’ (changing their approach). Lent is making the case that a new science backed paradigm is emerging that will help save the world from catastrophe - maybe. Putting the whole thing into a past 400 years or so context - as an environmentalist, myself and many others believe the ‘dominant scientific/technological world view’ during this time has generated the thinking and behaviour now reflected in the climate, ecological and socio/economic crisis. So historically I would strongly disagree with your view. You then go on to consider how complexity (didn’t Lent use the term ‘extended’?) links with ‘discreet entities’. I not sure what you are getting at when you say ‘When I’m with my wife I am a different person than when I’m by myself’. Are you making the point that a new more ordered system results when the two of you are together? Are you saying you are a different ‘self’ when on your own? You then state ‘we have no idea who our self is …. Almost certainly the reason is that the self doesn’t exist’. I interpret this as ‘Because the self does not exist there is nothing there to recognise/form an idea that it does’! - OK Then you move to a possible bigger picture scenario occupied by Consciousness. Soul. Ego. Self. Did you put Ego in there to just show its essentially the same? I can get why but don’t agree. Based on a brief peruse of Lent’s overview of The Web of Meaning, I’d say he would also think in similar terms as I do: an aspect of consciousness, yes, but not the totality. He mentions soul and ‘the democracy of consciousness’ and says ‘underlying everything there exists a unity of reality’. He even uses the term ‘mystic vision of oneness’. So I’d say (without access to the book and based on a quick look at a web page!) he’s just reframing the case for ‘consciousness’ underpinning everything, in an ecologically informed scientific way. Which brings me to the Zen discussion. I recall a Youtube image associated with one of Alan Watts’ talks - a person sitting cross-legged with no head, but a universe instead. Isn’t this what’s there when the I, the Ego is seen as a mere abstraction? I wonder if Jeremy has had this realisation or his take on the great traditions is more a summation from his research rather than from practice/experience? What informs his view on Anatman being more ‘no-fixed-I’ rather than ‘no-self’? I believe a really good discussion around this (Anatta) can be found in Rodney Smith’s book of the same name. Also, possibly in this book (it’s a while since I read it), Smith uses the vertical/horizontal analogy for awareness/human, self. He says the intersection/integration of the vertical/horizontal is where its at. Hence things such as the cross. BFN
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Ha Manjit! ‘Nobody expects the Reality-based Inquisition’….. Now you will stay in the comfy chair until lunchtime, with only a cup of coffee at eleven! Which brings me to another conversation: Arthur - The lady of the Lake, her arm clad in purest shimmering samite, held Excalibur aloft from the bosom of the waters to signify that by Divine Providence … I, Arthur, was to carry Excalibur … that is why I am your King. Dennis - Look, strange women lying on their backs in ponds handing over swords …. that’s no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses not from some farcical aquatic ceremony…… Thank God for Monty P. Re the mushroom story: ‘my sense of self dissolved and I unified with an abiding force that permeated all existence - something that felt conscious, vast, benevolent, eternal, peaceful, and furiously important.’ - I can get this especially the vast, peaceful bit. ‘… the radiant suchness of all things …. a purposeful part of existence … ‘I no longer feel like a prisoner of my own existence.’ a bit Buddhist yet quite profound imo. The last bit - a good description/take on getting passed separation/limitation- this made sense to me. ‘I guess I’ve become sympathetic towards the universal human impulse to self-transcend’ seems like this is part of our wiring. An evolutionary thing in my view. ‘What do you call someone who believes that things are likely better than they appear, and thinks that in light of this fact we should just be kinder to one another?’ sometimes hard to keep in mind, yet the last bit - definitely the way to go. Experiences of connection, integration and expansion - it becomes harder to be less kind when one feels part of/ connected to everything. The element often missing in science? How is ‘heart’ incorporated into the Scientific Method? As Plain Old Mary recently wrote: ‘The most powerful emotion we have cannot even be proven to exist. If some dunce atheist is looking for the scientific proof for love where does he find it? So do we deny love exists’? well said (though ‘he’ could have been a different gender :-)) As Kornfield says: ‘Spiritual life is not about knowing much, but about loving much.’ All a bit flowery (bring out the comfy chair!), but I think this is a major part of the equation. In a general sense, can people be raised to have both a well honed ability to detect bullshit/think critically as well as have another anchor in the heart that manifests as compassionate, tolerant, helpful behaviour? Listening to the radio this morning I was impressed by how well informed, insightful and ‘together’ the person being interviewed was - she was a scientist working for NASA, but also an Anglican priest. So in my view a good example of heart/head working in sync. Proof’s not so much of an issue for this person.
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Hey Sonia Interesting point you make about who comments on this blog. I was wondering about this also. There is of course at least one other category - those that have let go of the Sant Mat Dogma but in some way still remain connected, in that our past association continues to influence our ongoing worldview. This has got to be acknowledged. For whatever reason many of us were drawn to Sant Mat (RSSB) and then spent a fair proportion of our lives trying to live up to it. It’s like how we get affected by our interactions with parents as we are growing up - still in there. That’s my take on it. I’ve been endeavouring to keep up with and read this on-going lengthy debate about the existence/non-existence of God/proof thereof etc ??? Maybe another way to look at it is - there are two types of people who comment on this blog - those that believe that consciousness is everything and those that believe it is an outcome of what happens in the human brain (I’m in the first camp). Science appears to be uncovering a lot of information about what goes on within the second, but as far as I can tell (with limited knowledge), tools are unavailable when it comes to ‘measuring’ the first. I also tend to gravitate to research performed by those scientists/researchers who have spent a lot of time exploring their own minds via various meditation/self-inquiry techniques in conjunction with cutting edge neuroscience etc. At least they can draw on their own internal experience when it comes to how they perceive consciousness. I see one of the latest comments is to Spencer from ‘neuralsurfer’ (Hi D). The latter makes the point about Ramana’s response to a question about life after death - do you ask the same question in deep sleep? The way I read it, is that it’s a null question as in deep sleep there is no one there not even a dreamer. This is the thing with ‘consciousness’ imo. How do we measure the no-one there state? The other thing, that seems to be related to all this and I’m sure was and still is a (the?) key to the whole thing is this Love mystery. 777 in his weird way is always on about it. Many folk would say it is the essential ingredient that lies at the core of our humanity. Expression of which in our responses towards each other and this world are so needed, especially at this time. Well that’s what I think. I just read this: “When we are dead, seek not our tomb in the earth, but find it in the hearts of men” (RUMI). Best wishes
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Hey Osho Thanks for your responses. Best wishes supporting your mum. I’m still thinking about what’s your take on the essence of teachings such as presented by RSSB and ‘Oneness’ which I understand to be essentially non-duality. From conversations years back I’m wondering if your view is that at the core they are about the same thing, especially in light of your interactions with GSD? What’s your view of where ‘shabd’ fits? Re the Big Bang discussion, I just looked at this (news is 2 months old) - New experimental work in Chicago has got scientists ‘plausibly excited’. Because they can’t explain the behaviour of a sub-atomic particle called a muon in terms of the ‘Standard’ model of particle physics. It could well lead to some re-thinking about the formation and make-up of the universe and the possibility of a 5th force. Interestingly Neil Degrasse Tyson describes a muon (in this context, I think), as a kind of heavy electron, that operates at a much higher ‘energy level’. I surmise from this that the basis for everything can be described in terms of ‘higher energies’ - Maybe that’s why heavy metal could be linked to the dark side of the universe! :-) Of course they could have got the particle’s name wrong - perhaps instead of a muon its more of a WuAnon! See DW story at: https://youtu.be/Aa50SyDkiKg Rock on
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Hey Osho Been following your recent comments and ongoing interchange with AR - interesting even though many of us (esp you) have been thrashing this stuff around for many years now. The current thorny question - how is this non-duality proven? - seems it’s a very illusive thingamajig. How do we ‘function’ without a sense of ‘I’? This is obviously possible based on your example, however, everything I’ve assimilated on the subject would tend to indicate some semblance of I is left in order to function, but what would I know? - it’s very hard to get one’s head around this stuff. I believe AR is now doing a more concise job of focusing your responses in regard to this. Also with Brian’s ongoing posts, as I see it, basically saying this ‘non-dual’ realisation stuff can’t be proven, doesn’t stand up to scientific/critical scrutiny and therefor is likely to NOT be reflective of what reality is about, then we (in a general sense) have to improve how such realisations are explained/communicated. After reflecting on this I would again say this is one of, if not THE core issue many of us continue to grapple with and discuss on this blog. Thanks Brian. Osho - “It was like the owner of my life went on a holiday and didn't inform me. Life continued - but "I" was absent”- TR - I wonder who this owner is? Osho - ‘Life continued but I was absent’ - TR - life is, he/she who thinks they live it isn’t, (ultimately? - fair enough). Which reminds me of this quote from Wallis’ ‘Recognition Sutras’: ‘Life is not your story about it. Reality is what’s happening BEFORE you have a thought about it’ So there again someone is alluding to this non-dual state and for me another question - What is this ‘you’ that no longer thinks? And Osho I also enjoyed your post in regard to Shiva - always had an interest here. Reminds me of the YouTube clip showing all these ancient shiva lingams that were exposed when a river in India dried up. As a final point I’m wondering about your ‘Oneness’ ‘awakening’ and weather it’s the same as that supposedly realised in paths such as Sant Mat RSSB? Or are the two fundamentally different creatures in your view? I can see why throwing one’s lot in with the separate soul, stage by stage, attain the goal approach (+associated dogma) appeals to many as there is this sense of security/family there too. From what I’ve understood, you are not the only one to hit rock bottom before getting the non-dual realisation, something similar happened to several other guru types - Eckhart Tolle comes to mind. Not everyone’s cup of tea (the life falling apart bit). Shall we henceforth call you ‘The Swami from Swansea?’ :-). Thanks for sharing.
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To wahiwooanonji: An indomitable frog named Manjit Said that ‘karma’s’ a big pile of shit. As a result of this view Understanding - it grew And belief systems took quite a hit.
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Hey Osho Always good to read your comments - there are no separate souls - I hearya. Taking a ‘Scouldier’s’ view I’d say the belief in separation is the Big Daddy of all myths.
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A very human post Brian. Considering ‘regret’ brings up the cool word ‘confabulation’ which concerns how the mind makes up stories and scenarios. As you say the emotion of regret is more subtle and as Dungeness writes often tied up with guilt. To me, such things are the outcome of a common type of reminiscing that then moves to ‘what if’ discursive thinking.The latter keeps us in loops of past/future that can reinforce our sense of self as doer/thinker/story believer/victim etc - something we are trying to free up when engaged in various forms of meditation/mindfulness practice. One of the closing scenes in the movie Inception comes to mind where the character says something like ‘An old man waiting to die alone, filled with regret’ - not a great place to be! Then there’s this ad I remember on TV where a middle-aged couple trade gifts whilst sitting at the dinner table.The wife passes on her present, then the man gets up and takes his shirt off. The wife (and the viewer) think oh yeah they’re gonna get it on, however he turns around to display this massive new tattoo of the ‘missus’ on his back, with the words ‘No Regerts’…..
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