Monday, April 30, 2007

LIVING IN THE STYLE OF A REALIZED TEACHER, OR A HERON, OR A DEER, Part Two

FROM A SITE VISITOR: I have read what you have written about the mind and have pre-ordered your book on the mind, but another teacher talks about using the “working mind” and not the “thinking mind.” Will your book clarify (or maybe reconcile) what the two of you are teachings? Andi

F.: Over the years, many seekers have challenged the plausibility of the “try living more like the deer” pointer that was discussed in yesterday’s post. One site visitor wrote, “I have a class of twenty-two second graders that I’m responsible for. That includes teaching them what they have to know for the state test, disciplining them, chaperoning them to lunch, getting the sick ones out of the room and to the school nurse, dealing with their principals and counselors, making tests, grading tests, planning lessons, and conferencing with parents. Tell me how I’m supposed to live as peacefully as a deer in the woods.”

No problem, though the answer is longer than can be offered in a few daily postings. (There are some sources below that offer the full explanation with directions for transitioning each of the seven stages to Full Realization, but some pointers will be offered here. For now, let it be noted that you could live as freely as the deer if you were to Realize Fully and thereby begin the process of de-accumulation.)

What is obvious from the e-mail above is a level of stress that is typical among teachers who are heading into the last month of the U.S. school year after being with the same set of children since August. Sometimes, the stress level even starts out that high in August and stays that way all year. So how could you live more in the style of a deer and avoid that stress? First, by Realizing Fully. Should that happen, you will no longer be “The Teacher” (which is usually self-promoted to “The Super Teacher,” an ego-state which co-dependently requires “Super Students” for “The Super Teacher’s” happiness and, indeed, very survival. Stay in that mode and you will never be happy and stress-free because you will never consistently have Super Students that are more concerned with assuring your happiness than with their own interests and agendas).

However, if you were to Realize who/what you are not (namely “The Teacher” or "The Super Teacher") and Realize THAT Which You Truly Are, then even as you are no longer “The Teacher”…

1. …teaching can still happen;

2. …being paid after teaching happens can still continue;

3. …all of the job tasks that you catalogued above can still happen;

4. …and it can all take place even as an AS IF style of living that is as peaceful as that of a deer also happens.

How can that be? Here’s the way it has been explained before:

When the role of “The Teacher” is accepted as an identity, then egomania immediately promotes that persona to “The Super Teacher.” And what does “The Super Teacher” think that it must have in order to exist? (1) Super lessons that are being sought wholeheartedly by (2) “Super Students.” And when students were not doing what “The Super Students” were expected to do, then “The Super Teacher” felt as if he/she were dying and began to fight for his/her life by attacking “the not-super-students” who weren’t paying attention.
[Such attacks come as often from “The Super Spouse” who is not getting the respect desired, from “The Super Performer” who is not getting the attention that is wanted, or from “The Super Employer” whose employees are not paying adequate attention or “doing” what “Super Employees” are expected to do.]
When that ego-state of “The Teacher” dissolves (post-Realization), a shift results after the understanding becomes, “Teaching might happen today…or not.” (That simply means that no ego-state is attached to outcome or bent on controlling things that are beyond control or ready and willing to fight in order to maintain a false image.) No role and no do-er is fighting for its imagined life any longer. A shift in perspective happens as mere witnessing begins. Truth is differentiated from the false. Emotional intoxication ends. When the illusion of do-er disappears, then the witness begins to merely observe what happens…or not. Peace manifests alongside that process.

To forfeit the illusion of a do-er with power and control allows You to sit back, to relax, and to take it easy while witnessing all of the insane conduct of personas (embroiled in their “going and doing and zooming”). The witness will not be caught up in their chaos and will not be pulled under by the relative existence maelstroms that the egotism of personas always generates.

And that is the way that you can live as peacefully as the deer and still meet your basic food, clothing and shelter requirements. This is not theory but is a report of actual experience. Yet you can never be at peace and ease if meeting the basic requirements is not the goal. If the goal is to have the highest standard of food, the highest standard of clothing, and the highest standard of housing, then you cannot live as the deer lives. The deer is ego-less, so less is just fine.
Thus, to move to a fashion of living that is marked by even higher levels of peace, many have followed the suggestion offered yesterday: they have down-sized or de-accumulated after asking such questions as: "Do I have a house that is larger than required?" and "Do I own my house or does my house own me?" and "Could the next car purchase involve a smaller or less expensive vehicle or not?" and "Have I ever figured the exact cost of ego, in dollars or euros or rupees or pounds sterling, as relates to every purchase I have ever made?" and "Have I made any effort to be free of the effects of having been programmed to believe that 'more is better' and actually considered the possibility that my relative existence might be improved with less?" When a deer has a more peaceful lifestyle than you, and when you see that a deer is a minimalist that could hardly have less, then the wise also see the correlation.
The deer does not accumulate, does not race through its days or nights, does not prefer noise to the quiet, does not adopt false identities, does not overeat or do anything to excess out of boredom or nervousness; and does not adopt an agenda of other animals in the forest and act like something that it is not. For you, less "stuff" could mean less maintenance; smaller "stuff" could mean less upkeep expense; less cost could mean sooner freedom from bills; less noise will guarantee more quiet and peace if schedules are adjusted to include at least some quiet time each day; going and doing and zooming could be less necessary if the illusions of self gave way to an awareness of Self; and freedom of speech could become less touted when freedom from speech becomes valued.

You can live as freely as the deer if you follow the steps that can result in Realization and in de-accumulation (which always follows Realization). And, again, that is not theory. Everything mentioned above is an account of actual experience. Please enter the silence of contemplation.
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  • Click FROM THE I TO THE ABSOLUTE (A Seven-Step Journey to Reality)
  • Sunday, April 29, 2007

    LIVING IN THE STYLE OF A REALIZED TEACHER, OR A HERON, OR A DEER, Part One

    FROM A SITE VISITOR: I have read what you have written about the mind and have pre-ordered your book on the mind, but another teacher talks about using the “working mind” and not the “thinking mind.” Will your book clarify (or maybe reconcile) what the two of you are teachings? Andi

    F. Hello Andi. The book you’ve ordered does not address the “working mind-thinking mind” terms, but some clarifying pointers are offered about the “working vs. thinking mind” in the book THE ESSENCE OF THE TEACHINGS.

    When seekers have come here for satsanga, sometimes they have been invited to walk down the terrace to the harbor or to walk along the edges of one of the coves nearby and watch a Great Blue or Great White Heron. (The same exercise was used with deer when sessions were being offered in a location that was near a forest. Why? Nisarga Yoga is an invitation to live naturally. If you could spend an extended period of time in the presence of a Realized Teacher, you might see natural living being modeled. For most who cannot arrange such an opportunity for witnessing, why not at least witness a bird or animal that is truly living naturally? Most can arrange that right now.)

    When they returned after having witnessed one of the birds or one of the deer for a period, the participants were asked to write in their notebooks a contrast of the way that the heron/deer was living as opposed to the way that they were living. Inevitably, the participants always noted certain observations that were common to most of their lists: the deer/heron’s “peace”; the way that the deer/heron seemed not to be bothered by anything at all; or the way that, if it was disturbed by humans that approached, the way it just relocated to a quieter place.

    Some of the more creative descriptors that some seekers have written include words such as “natural” or “unencumbered” or “free” or “unregulated” or “not burdened” or “just being.” Then participants were asked to write a second list using words that described the way they were living. (The words were never as appealing as those used to describe the lifestyle of the deer/heron.)

    Then the participants were asked to write answers to the following:

    “Why does the life being lived by a deer/heron seem to be preferable to your own?”

    “Are you more intelligent and more knowledgeable than a deer/heron? If so, why is it able to live a life that seems to be preferable to yours?”

    “Why does the deer/heron not need to Realize and why does it not need to go through the "Seven Step Journey to Reality"? That is, what have you experienced that the deer/heron has not?”

    “Do you believe that the deer/heron has any kind of mind at all or that it is merely functioning via the auspices of the brain and natural instincts?”

    “Do you believe that the deer/heron was ‘thinking’ or merely witnessing?”

    “Have your minutes and hours and days and years been passed from a “thinking mode” or from a “witnessing mode”?

    “Is your mind ‘working’ more than you want it to?”

    “The deer/heron is born with its clothing, eats food that is free, and pays nothing for shelter. Most humans don’t have that privilege, and employment must happen for you to meet your food, clothing and shelter requirements. But if a shift in perspective were to happen, how could you meet those basic requirements and still live in a fashion that would be more natural, less encumbered, far freer, less burdened, and marked by ‘just being’?”

    “The deer/heron has accumulated little…a temporary place for bedding only. How could de-accumulation allow an adjustment to happen in your lifestyle that might be preferable to the way that you are living now?”


    So, Andi, the same invitation to try that exercise is offered to you and to all site visitors: go to the woods or a park or some place where you can quietly observe a bird or animal in its natural habitat. If possible, focus on one bird or animal alone. Then return home and write answers to the questions above; then, read the answers until a new understanding manifests. For additional explanation, see the book below. Please enter the silence of contemplation. (To be continued)
    Interested in more on “the working mind vs. the thinking mind,” on “manifestation vs. unmanifestation,” on “free will vs. no free will,” on “the seven degrees of separation from reality,” on exercises for focused meditation, on what “the ‘higher power’ is vs. what it is not,” and on “natural living vs. unnatural or supernatural living”?
  • Click THE ESSENCE OF THE TEACHINGS
  • Saturday, April 28, 2007

    THE REALIZATION MOMENT: Exiting the Stage of the Drama of the Lie, Part Three, The Conclusion

    F.: Many confuse the Realization moment with a momentary elucidation, with an occasional glimpse of truth, or with certain transitional moments. Thus, many mistake the dawn for the noon, convinced that they “have it” rather than knowing there is no one to have anything or to gain anything. They want to “have it” when the Teachings are an invitation to “lose it.” Why is there no “one” to “have it” or to “get it”? There is only the consciousness that is either corrupted or that becomes re-purified after the understanding comes. You might review the post of two days prior, note the three drama terms that describe the “shift,” and then understand what happens on the “path” to Realization:

    Rather than any “one” to claim “I have it” or “I’ve finally got it,” the understanding is that It Is Consciousness that can speak temporarily…not some person/persona. And the Consciousness, being a form of energy, could never say “I have gained something.” (Remember the anagnorisis, the “discovery” or “recognition”?) The Consciousness merely recognizes that it had been warped via programming and conditioning and enculturation. So what happens next is a sudden change. (Remember the peripetia, that “sudden change”?) The change involves no longer taking oneself to be a body or mind or person/persona, including a dogmatized persona or a spiritualized persona.

    Once the consciousness is concept-free, it can witness all that is false and then know THAT Which Is Real. Then, Consciousness can speak, and knowing that there is no “one” to gain or lose anything, Consciousness can say, "I now know all that I am not, I now understand that I Am (that is, that 'I Am a quantity of energy that is temporary manifested in a temporary space')" and that "I realize that THAT Which I Truly Am is beyond both beingness and non-beingness as well." An awareness of the functioning of the totality happens, abidance even as the Consciousness is transcended, and abidance as the Absolute continues for the remainder of the manifestation. It really is all so simple, once the miasma lifts (namely, the miasma of concepts and dogma and ideas and beliefs) so that the Consciousness can see the Truth clearly. (Then the catharsis comes and there is a sense of freedom and peace that happens after the purging of the impurities of programming and conditioning and enculturation.)

    When a seeker moves from one of the seven steps to the next on the “journey” to Reality, that can be called a “transitional moment,” but that should not be mistaken for Realization. All seven steps must be transitioned, and to move from one stage to the next is not Realization. For example, look at Stage Three, where a seeker may have cast aside a prurient fixation with body and has begun to seek via a religious or spiritual approach. That is a required step, but “The Religious Person” and “The Spiritual Giant” are nothing more than newly-adopted, but false, personas that must also be transitioned eventually if the seeker is to continue on the “journey” and Realize Fully. The movement from (a) a focus on the body only to (b) an undertaking of religious or spiritual practices and study is a transitional moment. To stay in either role will prevent movement along the “path” to the actual Realization moment. At that third stage, more than half of the yet-untraveled portion of “the path” still remains. Here’s an example of the way one transitional moment happened with a Stage Three seeker who visited for satsanga:
    The seeker had been unable to move beyond the third stage. The fear instilled by years of religious programming, combined with threats of punishment “if faith was not firm,” had caused a 32-year old woman to experience a paralyzing fear whenever she even thought about questioning things that she found ludicrous on one level but sacred on another. (Talk about duality…talk about the fact that “a dual-minded person will be unstable in all ways.”) At one session, she had finally begun to question, timidly, but the questions dealt with concepts that she found so baffling that she had remained fixated at the third of the seven steps on her “journey,” clinging to identification with her dogmatized persona. At best she could only ask “Well, how do I find out which part of the dogma is true and which part is false?”

    She had not seen that all of the puzzling questions were coming from a standpoint of complete deception. She was obsessed with making some kind of sense of “limbo” and “purgatory” and “heaven and hell” and her contradictory “God of unconditional love who was, nevertheless, capable of withholding forgiveness and punishing her eternally.” She was shown that she had been calling herself “a Christian” but had been ignoring the words of Christ which he spoke after he was exposed to the Advaita Teachings: “Before Abraham was, I AM”; “When you speak of Me, speak of Me as I AM”; “No one will ever see the kingdom of heaven—it’s within”; and “Heaven and earth shall fade away.” After considering those words and their implications, the anagnorisis happened. She recognized that his words and “their” teachings could never be reconciled, that she had spent frustrating decades in her efforts to try to fit a square peg into a round hole, that she had been engaged in maddening exercises that were trying to make sense of nonsense.

    Suddenly, (remember perepetia), she saw how she had been fooled for so many years. She became very quiet as another puzzling set of concepts were beginning to fall away. She was seated on the floor and was looking down at her feet. Someone tried to add something, but a hand came up to stop the interruption. She was understanding, yet a few more moments of quiet were required. Then, she looked up and eyes met, and her mouth was slightly twisted, and her body moved when a quiet “humph” was expelled. And then she shook her head a little, as if to say, “I cannot believe that I have been so blind.” And then, eventually, she smiled. She was then told that she should not blame herself and that she need not blame those who had passed along their learned ignorance either: “They know not what they do.”

    After another period of quiet, she said peacefully, “There’s no more a god of mass destruction than there were weapons of mass destruction, is there?” A movement of the head that indicated the negative happened...in order to confirm her understanding. Then, it was said to her, “It was all a lie, all intended to control you just as it’s all been intended to control the masses for thousands of years. For thousands of years as well as in the present, ‘they’ have wanted you to go along with their hidden agendas in their efforts to control and to have power and to get whatever their ego-states were driving them to desire or to fear at any given moment.” She nodded in agreement, in understanding.

    What happened with her as she began to shift from the third to the fourth stage might be called “a realization,” but it was not the Realization moment. More remained that had yet to be understood, so she was experiencing only a transitional moment. Seven of those are required to reach the Realization moment.

    When the Realization moment happens, persons exit the stage of the "Drama of the Lie" entirely and are fully in touch with reality after truly understanding just how fooled they have been for the entirety of their lives. Then, all questions end and an understanding of the functioning of the totality begins to happen. Cycles become understood, and what cycles and what does not cycle is understood. It becomes understood how trillions and trillions have been deceived. It becomes understood why one Advaitin said that only one in ten million will ever realize, meaning that 9,999,999 out of every 10,000,000 persons will be fooled, will remain a fool, and will never touch reality.

    The Realization moment is the moment when all of the confusion ends. It is the moment that happens after a seeker who never questioned anything begins to question everything until even the questions end. Why? Because it is seen that all questions were being asked from a relative standpoint…from a standpoint of deception…from a standpoint of duality. To confuse momentary elucidations, occasional glimpses of truth, or certain transitional moments with the Realization moment will guarantee that the total “journey” will not be completed and that Full Realization, therefore, will never happen. Please enter the silence of contemplation.
    INTERESTED IN TAKING ALL SEVEN STEPS AND REALIZING FULLY?
  • Click FROM THE I TO THE ABSOLUTE (A Seven-Step Journey to Reality)
  • Friday, April 27, 2007

    THE REALIZATION MOMENT: Exiting the Stage of the Drama of the Lie, Part Two

    F.: The drama terms offered yesterday are relevant to a discussion of the Realization moment (1) because the same techniques and pointers were used by Realized teachers before they were employed by dramatists, (2) because Realized writers for centuries have used the techniques identified by those terms in order to show characters coming to their Realization, and (3) because an understanding of the terms can help distinguish between occasional understandings or partial glimpses of truth as opposed to the actual moment of Full Realization.

    Realization, if it happens with you, must happen in the way that the early Greek dramatists, and some modern dramatists, had witnessed it happening "in real life." They merely passed on in their plays (or screenplays now) what they had experienced or what they saw persons experiencing. It happened in this order with them and it must happen in a manner similar to the same order with you:

    (A) you must first have been programmed to become an actor or actress and to play roles that you eventually assume to be actual identities; (B) you must be fooled by some key characters and believe wholeheartedly and unquestioningly in the content of the “Drama of the Lie”; (C) you must become so identified with your roles, and thus so lost in the drama, that you are willing to fight if your roles are challenged, really believing that you are actually being hurt, interfered with, or threatened; (D) you must lose freedom and free will as you are driven unconsciously and subconsciously by the machinations of the roles you are playing, yet you must (E) be deluded, believing that you are in charge of your life and in control; (F) next, you must fail to see that your roles are dictating everything you do, say or feel and that you have lost your freedom; (G) you must reach a point where you begin to feel trapped and don't even know who you are any more...and that is rare in plays since only one character out of them all is usually awakened to the Truth; (H) you must feel alone and empty and confused, no longer knowing who or what to believe as you begin to see that you have been misled and lied to; (I) that doubt and willingness to question will drive you to begin a search for the Truth; (J) next, an anagnorisis—a discovery or recognition—must happen as you see that what you had assumed to be real is actually false; (K) you must have an "Oh my gosh!" experience or awakening to the lies and delusions and deception that dominated you and that dominate all persons on the planet; (L) following that, your moment of peripetia can happen and a sudden change will occur; (M) a turning point will come after understanding how you were set up to believe their lies and after seeing how your belief in their lies has prevented you from finding the truth you have sought; (N) a catharsis will happen as the Consciousness That You Are is purified or cleansed of all of the nonsense that humanity has dreamed up for millenia and that humanity has passed down for millenia; and then finally, (O) you sit back and relax and watch the play as it unfolds, not attaching to the action or the phony characters or their histrionics and thereby remain at peace and at ease, enjoying it all and allowing work and/or play to merely happen, witnessing it all unfold as you feel but no longer emote. You will be moved along spontaneously by reason and logic and will never be emotionally-intoxicated again.

    [Note: Of course the word “change” is relativistic since, in fact, nothing changes. There is no “one” to change. You Are That Which You Truly Are, and have never been anything else, in spite of all the roles assumed along the way. Instead, one simply comes to understand what one is not and that prepares the way to find That Which You Truly Are. The only “change,” therefore, is the change from believing lies to knowing truth.]

    Here is the way that the Realization moment was discussed in the novel THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF WARS when Brett says to Kirk:

    “You seem at peace in the middle of this chaos. I want that peace,” Brett almost demanded.
    “Brett, you’ve been shown the answer all your life. It was there for you to see in every play, in every movie, in every mystery you’ve ever read. Shakespeare borrowed the dramatic technique from the Greeks,” Kirk began. “Today, it’s the basis of all mystery and suspense stories, and it’s also the basis of realization.”
    “I’m lost,” Brett confessed.
    “Well look at every drama you’ve ever seen. The main character, who represents you and me and everyone, runs around like a chicken with its head cut off. He is confused and in the dark. Those who are in a position to sit back and witness the drama objectively can see that he’s just an actor on the stage and that none of the drama is real. But for entertainment’s sake, he and the witnesses can pretend it’s real. Both, in fact, can get so absorbed in the role that they take it to be the real for a time.
    “But even amidst all of the drama, a time comes, that moment in the play when even the actor finds out the truth. It is called the peripetia in drama—that moment in the play or the movie when the lead actor finds out that everything he thought to be true is really false; when he sees that he was being misled at every turn; when those he thought he could trust the most, and who thought they were telling him the truth, were also wrong.
    “It’s the moment of freedom that comes when one finds out that everything he ever thought or believed or held sacred (or thought worth fighting for) was a lie. The freedom comes when he gives up all of the concepts he bought into, drops his head in relief and amazement, shakes his head back and forth, wonders for a moment at how he had bought into all their crap, smiles at how easily he was duped, watches how all of the rest of the play unfolds automatically until its end, and leaves the stage after saying to himself, ‘Well, sonofabitch. I’ll be damned.’ And then he laughs. He laughs at it all. And then he’s done with it, once and for all.”

    So the considerations for you today are taken from that non-duality novel entitled The Board of Directors of Wars:

    Are you truly and completely at peace in the middle of this chaos?

    Do you truly and completely want peace, or are you addicted to chaos?

    Can you see that you have been truly and completely confused and in the dark?

    Have you truly and completely seen that you’ve just been an actor on the stage?

    Have you truly and completely seen that none of the drama is real?

    Have you truly and completely experienced that moment of peripetia?

    Have you truly and completely seen that everything you thought to be true is really false?

    Have you truly and completely seen that you were being misled at every turn?

    Have you truly and completely seen that those you thought you could trust the most, and who thought they were telling you the truth, were also wrong?

    Have you truly and completely seen that everything you ever thought or believed or held sacred (or thought worth fighting for) was a lie?

    Have you truly and completely reached the point where you are ready to give up all of the concepts you bought into?

    Are you able to smile at how easily “they” duped you?

    Are you truly and completely ready to watch how all of the rest of the play unfolds automatically until its end?

    Are you truly and completely ready to leave the stage, the role-playing, the histrionics, and all of the dramatic nonsense that robs persons of peace and happiness?

    Are you truly and completely ready to laugh and then be done with it, once and for all?
    Please enter the silence of contemplation.
    INTERESTED IN THE NOVEL THAT OFFERS MANY ADVAITA CONSIDERATIONS AND THAT FEATURES A REALIZED ADVENTURER WHO OFFERS AN INVITATION TO UNDERSTAND THE ONENESS?
  • Click THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF WARS
  • Thursday, April 26, 2007

    THE REALIZATION MOMENT: Exiting the Stage of the Drama of the Lie, Part One

    F.: Addicts often claim that they are “sober” or “clean” if they stop using for a time, yet physical sobriety is only one of four stages of sobriety. If non-using addicts continue to exhibit all of the traits and behaviors of the Addictive Personality Disorder on a regular basis, then they likely have not eliminated their mental intoxication or emotional intoxication and can very likely be suffering from spiritual intoxication as well. Such is exactly the case, too, with those who think they have Realized but are not truly free of mental intoxication, emotional intoxication and spiritual intoxication. How much sanity has been restored when one thinks he/she can give away something that they do not even have, be it all four levels of sobriety or be it Realization?
    Questions from two seekers this week who have not Realized fully were responded to thusly:
    Something is missing in your case. Realization is about being free of the dream and being fully awake, aware, and conscious. Post-Realization, a lightness of being happens, but the "pink cloud syndrome" does not happen. Post-Realization, functioning should happen more clearly...not less clearly. The Realized can still get a job, keep a job, pay bills, etc. Post-Realization, AS IF living happens, meaning you know that “none of it is real” but you behave as if it is. Then, the relative existence tasks required for providing food, clothing and shelter happen...but without attachment. Insane-like behavior ends, but the invitation to you, at this point, is that you "help yourself" before you go about trying to "save" others.

    Short of Full Realization, the only "change" (which is always a disingenuous change) is a change in personas as the acting continues. Persons only put on the cloak of a different character, only change the lines being spoken when in the spotlight, and only change from swaggering and blustering about on stage left to swaggering and blustering about, stage right. With Full Realization, there is no such thing as “I’m getting it.” Is there reading preparation? Usually. Is there some time spent with a teacher? Often. (Maharaj reported that the entire process took three years in his case, yet the exact moment of Realization was clearly fixed.) Can there even be further purification of the consciousness post-Realization? Certainly in some cases, including among some of the most revered Advaita jnanis/teachers/gurus; yet even then, the exact moment of Realization was obvious to them.

    Once the consciousness has been bastardized to the point that body identification is happening, there are seven degrees of separation from Reality. Every one of those stages must be transitioned (and never revisited) if Full Realization can be said to have happened. There are no “slips,” there is no “backsliding,” there is no “I had it but lost it,” and there is no “I’m moving through ‘levels’ of Realization.” If Full Realization has happened, the exact instant when Realization “strikes” is known, and from that point there is no “going back.”

    To understand that moment and to be able to recognize that particular instant if it happens (and to distinguish a "real happening" from all other assumed but fictional “moments of awakening”), the dramatic arts have provided terms that clarify that moment of true awakening. Realized playwrights have illustrated the awakening process for centuries and they (along with Realized screenwriters now) continue to do so to this day. Here are some theatrical terms that are relevant to the awakening of characters in drama and that are relevant to the Realization moment as well:

    Anagnorisis” (or, “discovery” or “recognition”): a Greek term referring to an actor’s recognition of the fact that he had been representing something that was not real; the discovery by an actor that what he had assumed to be real is actually false; the realization of things as they truly are; an understanding of the basis of antagonistic relations with other characters; and according to Aristotle, “the discovery of one’s own identity and true character”; anagnorisis generates “peripetia

    Peripetia” (or, “peripeteia,” “peripety”): From the Greek “peripet,” meaning “to change suddenly” or, in drama, “a turning point”; or “the point in a drama when a character learns something he had been previously ignorant of”; Aristotle defined it as "a change by which the action veers round to its opposite”

    Catharsis” (Greek, “Katharsis”): the “purification” or “cleansing” that accompanies “anagnorisis” and “peripetia

    Further discussion of the Realization moment will continue tomorrow, but for today the invitation is to use the definitions above to look at your self/Your Self and answer honestly:

    Have you truly and completely recognized the fact that you have been representing something that was not real?

    Have you truly and completely discovered everything that you had assumed to be real but that was actually false?

    Have you truly and completely realized the way that things truly are?
    Do you truly and completely understand the functioning of the totality?

    Have you truly and completely understood the basis of every antagonistic “relation”?

    Have you truly and completely discovered Your True “Identity”?

    Have you truly and completely undergone a sudden (and permanent) change?

    Have you truly and completely reached that “turning point” and become aware of all that you had previously been ignorant of?

    Have you truly and completely undergone a change that has resulted not only in every action being the opposite of the way your personas acted in the past but has also resulted in your being free of all illusions about the existence of any “do-er” at all?

    Has the Consciousness That You Are been truly and completely purified and cleansed of all programming and conditioning?
    Please enter the silence of contemplation. (To be continued)
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    Wednesday, April 25, 2007

    THE RELATIVE NATURE OF “GOOD” AND “BAD”: What Makes you Think you Know?

    Tom and Jim met in a nearby mall:

    Tom: Hey Jim. Long time no see.
    Jim: It's been a while, hasn't it?
    Tom: Fall of 2002, I think, at the state championship game when Jim Junior played. Did he go on to play college ball?
    Jim: Yeah. He got a full scholarship to the University of Texas.
    Tom: Well that’s good.
    Jim: No, that was bad because the pressure was too much for him…football…studies…9-11 trauma and the aftermath…and then he broke a leg in a game.
    Tom: Awww, that’s too bad.
    Jim: Actually, he thought it was good. The time required to heal gave him time to think about what he wanted to do with his life.
    Tom: Well then, that was a good thing.
    Jim: Well, we thought it was bad. He decided he wanted to join the military and fight for his country. He said that was his calling and wanted to make a career of the army. The leg healed perfectly and they took him.
    Tom: Well, that’s a good thing…at least he found a direction for his life, and he followed his heart.
    Jim: Well, my wife and I think it was a bad thing...they sent him home a month ago.
    Tom: Well, that sounds like a good thing to me.
    Jim: Not really. He was in a flag-draped coffin.
    Tom: Oh my gosh, Jim! That’s horrible!

    Persons are trapped in ignorance because of their dualistic perspectives and because of their supposed "need" to classify everything as "positive or negative," as "good or bad," as "black or white" with no possible chance of any gray areas existing at all. Religious persons have been heard for nearly fifty-five years, explaining exactly what will get me a reward and exactly what will get me punishment, though their criteria vary by denomination or sect; judgmental persons have been heard as they share what they are sure is moral and what they are sure is immoral; politicians have informed the nation that “this country” or “that country” was evil, only to start a war, end a war, and then become their trading partners and allies decades later; spiritual persons have assumed me over the last several decades that they could teach me some spiritual disciplines that—if practiced on a daily basis—will guarantee a good life.
    Persons talk about “good weather” and complain about “bad weather”; about getting a “good job” but later about leaving that “bad job”; about finding “a good man” or “a good woman," only to leave after finding they had “married some kind of wicked devil”; about finding "a great lover" who would later be re-labeled as "a sex maniac" instead; about a man with "a good work ethic" who would later be re-classified as "a workaholic"; about a "really cool woman" who would later be labeled as "an emotionally-unavailable witch."

    In an existence in which everything is relative, in which change is the only constant, and in which there are no absolutes, what (other than colossal egotism, self-satisfied arrogance, and total blindness) would make persons think they know—for a fact—exactly what is “good” and exactly what is “bad”? Please enter the silence of contemplation.

    Tuesday, April 24, 2007

    SAMSKARAS, ARCHETYPES, AND FREEDOM FROM THEIR EFFECTS

    F.: As this series ends after responding to questions submitted about samskaras and archetypes, let the main pointer be offered: solutions in the relative cannot be found unless problems in the relative (and their sources) are properly identified. It is useless to top off the weeds in a garden instead of pulling them up at the root and discarding them. Take the garden that is bastardized with weeds to be the relative existence. Take the plants to be the lives of persons (that is, the non-Realized) that could be flourishing but that do not because of the weeds. Take the weeds to be all that chokes off the ability of the plants to flourish (and to exist in a calm and peaceful fashion):

    the belief by persons that they are awake when they are walking about in their sleep; the belief by persons that they are making choices and have free will when in fact everything they think and emote and do is controlled by genetics and chemical imbalances and a “mind” that is a repository of lies and programming and enculturation and conditioning; the arrogant belief by persons that they have the right to control friends, neighbors, traffic, co-workers, spouses, a nation and all other nations; the belief by persons that they have the right to decide who should die and who should live; and the deep love affair that persons have with their concept of “separation.”

    It is that love affair that persons have with their belief in separation and duality which breeds all arrogance and all “better-than-you” type thinking; which makes neighbors or co-workers or spouses or other teams or other cities or other states or other nations “not good enough”; which allows persons to believe that the deaths of persons in their group are bad but that the deaths of those outside their group can be good; which allows persons to believe that they have a god in another world that is empowering them and making them “better”; which drives persons to believe that if you do not worship, or if you do not worship their god according to the dictates of their religion or denomination or sect, that they have the right to punish you, reject you, or even kill you.

    And what are the roots of those weeds that have always brought misery and suffering to the “human existence”? The roots are ignorance; a lack of wisdom; a preference among persons to explain everything supernaturally or mythically or magically or superstitiously rather than preferring the scientific and factual and actual explanation for happenings; a laziness that drives persons to accept what others say rather than investigating and seeking truth themselves; a preference for emotional intoxication over reason and logic; programming, conditioning and enculturation; taking impressions and images to be real; the assumption of ego-states as identities; the allowance of the ego-defense mechanisms that accompany all ego-states to determine everything that persons say, do, or feel; the refusal to seek an understanding of the unicity while clinging to the belief in separation and multiplicity; and, as a result of believing in “separate but not equal,” being driven by such high levels of arrogance, egotism, and self-importance that the planet becomes dominated by persons (playing their roles of “leader”) who are supercilious, prideful, and haughty.

    Further, all that is defined as “destructive” on the planet evolves from two relative contributors: (1) the arrogance, ego, and false pride of “leaders” and (2) the programmed and conditioned masses who blindly follow those leaders and who refuse to question the words of their politicians or preachers or generals or ayatollahs or judges or teachers or priests or mullahs or spiritual teachers or entertainers or rabbis or gurus or medicine men or imams.

    The “journey” to Realization begins with questioning…with a willingness to question it all. To clean out the garden and thereby allow the plants to flourish, the seeker must find the roots of the weeds and discard not just the evidence of the weeds but must be rid of the root systems as well. When the manner in which persons think, emote and behave is determined by impressions and images and personas instead of by logic and reason and fact, then a relative existence problem exists and nothing other than insane or insane-like behavior can follow. Persons are being driven by unconscious and subconscious forces, even as they believe that they are making choices.

    Impressions and images and archetypes and dogma and ideas are all concepts that are based in memories and stored in the unconscious or in the subconscious. To be influenced by anything that you are unconscious of blocks Realization and prevents true freedom. The basic archetypes are merely personality types that are universally recognized. The commonly-held beliefs about such types have been repeated so frequently that those fictitious characters are no longer questioned by persons but are assumed as identities instead.

    As with all myths and superstitions (and the religious and spiritual beliefs that have evolved from them), the impressions or imprints that follow repeated exposure to such “typing” are soon taken by the conditioned masses to be real. False identities are assumed to be real and those assumptions are seldom ever questioned. As a result of thousands of years of conditioning and genetic messaging, the belief in falsehoods has become so widespread that the attachment of “positive vs. negative” connotations to ideas or words is now automatic, no matter how nonsensical the labels of “good vs. bad” might be.

    Archetypes are about symbols, images, personas, and individualization, all of which are false concepts taken to be true by “the mind” and all of which must be seen to be fictional if one is to Realize. The liability that “the mind” has become should now be clear. Archetypes inspire certain patterns of thought when truth can only be found beyond “thoughts,” beyond the fiction of the "mind."

    Archetypes are “deposits of the repeated experience of humanity” which cause humans to accept “mythical ideas” as real. The Advaitin knows that these inherent and cultural images are only one more influence that must be transitioned if Realization is to happen. The stuff of myths and legends and fairy tales has become the stuff of “the mind” of persons. Along with the accumulation of ideas and concepts and beliefs and dogma, those archetypal images and concepts now form a collection of never-to-be-questioned beliefs that drive humans to behave and emote and think in the unnatural or supernatural ways that they now behave and emote and think.

    Just as was the case with the brain’s ability to store memories and retrieve memories, impressions and archetypes were initially an “asset” in facilitating the perpetuation of the species, but now (just as is the case with “the mind”) they have become a liability to those seeking freedom and truth and independence.

    To be independent and in touch with reality, seven specific steps are required. They must be taken in an exact order, which happens to be exactly the reverse order by which the consciousness manifested and became corrupted through various levels of programming and conditioning and enculturation and genetic coding. If you want to take those seven steps, the guide is available. Please enter the silence of contemplation.
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  • Monday, April 23, 2007

    SAMSKARAS, ARCHETYPES, AND THE LOSS OF FREEDOM

    F.: Now, to continue the response to those who asked about the validity of archetypal messages. If you look over the edge of a cliff or a tall building and your stomach automatically and involuntarily “jumps” as a means of alerting you of a potential physical danger, certainly that is an archetypal response and certainly it is “of value” and is “valid” to those wanting to protect the physical body. It should be noted, however, that while archetypes can be “useful” in such situations, they are rooted in a history of phenomenal, human experiences and thereby transmit far more false impressions. Whereas nature’s intent was that they would provide legitimate warnings of danger, now they support a dualistic sense of separation by race, by religion, by denomination, by sect, by state, by nation, by economic level, by form of government, etc.

    In that regard, the pointer was offered yesterday that…

    …from ego and arrogance and a sense of separation have come the desires and fears that generate the perceived need for power; the desire to control; the assumed right to judge and moralize and be “the one who is right”; the assumption of the right to dictate and punish or reward; the need to argue, fight, separate, and engage in wars; and the willingness (and often, indeed, the propensity) to destroy on personal, state, national and international levels. The trillions, and the trillions of trillions, of persons who have died on this planet from anything other than a "natural cause" were actually sacrifices made on the altar of ego.

    What do ego-driven, destructive, subject-object “thoughts,” always generated by a dualistic “mind,” look like in practice today? “I am a good man; I just said a bad thing”; “we are the good nation, but they are the axis of evil”; “I talked to Him”; He told me that I should bomb them”; and “our nation has been catastrophically-paralyzed by 32 killings here this week, but regarding the 1000+ killings there this week…not so much.”

    The ancient impressions and archetypal images that fostered duality are now inspiring persons to talk about who is good and who is bad; about a supreme being there talking to mortal beings here; about killings here that are bad and about killings there that are merely collateral damage…et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. That is what sacrifices being made on the altar of ego look like, and here are the types of lines being spoken by the key actors on the stage of this absurd play:

    “I can decide who lives and who dies locally”; or “It is moral for us to kill legally in Texas but it is immoral for him to kill illegally in Virginia”; or “I can decide who dies in execution chambers in North Korea or in Iran or in Syria or in…Pennsylvania”; and “our nation can decide who lives and who dies anywhere in the world.”

    The main characters in this modern morality play called the Drama of the Lie are Arrogance, Greed, Ego, Judging, The Good Guys, The Bad Guys, Separation and Destruction. As for the motivations of the actors, their driving force can be understood by seeing the type of thinking that comes from a dualistic mind (which has now expanded in scope to become the collective dualistic mind of the masses). Such widespread destruction during this relative existence is the result of belief in the dualities of “good vs. bad,” “right vs. wrong,” “moral vs. immoral,” and “deserving punishment or deserving reward,” all of which are rooted in false impressions and in archetypal images which now support the concepts of duality that mar the relative existence.

    Those archetypal images are stored in what Carl Jung called “the collective unconscious.” As shown, they have a major influence on human thoughts and perceptions (and misperceptions) as they are rooted in personality types and are often grouped into dualistic categories of "heroes or heroines vs. villains." (Consider that scenario: things in your unconscious are helping to determine how you feel, what you perceive about persons, how you feel about persons, and what you think about persons. Talk about “no choice.”) Thus, archetypes reinforce belief in personality, personas, stereotypes, and duality. They set the stage for “good guy vs. bad guy” judgments, for “good weather vs. bad weather” nonsense, and for “good people vs. bad people” moralizing.

    Tomorrow, the discussion of archetypes and their effects (and how to transcend those effects) will continue, but for now, the invitation is to pause and consider: all of the rubbish described above that is now so typical among persons on the planet will not end. It is too engrained among too many who will continue to pass down the teaching of lies as truth. Realization will only happen for a few since the number of those passing along lies is far larger than the number of Advaitins that are teaching the way to find truth. The voice of duality is the voice of madness, yet it is the only voice that is typically heard across the planet. Nevertheless, even as such thinking and behavior will continue, you can be free of such nonsense, even as it continues to happen all about you. The way to that freedom requires that the seeker look first to the “self.”

    The True Self cannot be found if the search begins with a search for the True Self. The “journey” must begin with the search for the self, that is, with the search for the false self, and for every false self or persona that is driving you. Have you considered the things that are stored in memory or in the unconscious or in a dualistic “mind’ that are all determining how you feel, what you perceive about persons, how you feel about persons, and what you think about persons? Have you seen, when false impressions and inaccurate memories and images are driving the way that you think and emote and behave, that you really have no “free will” and no "choice" in regards to anything? And do you not see that, without free will and choice, you really have no freedom at all? Please enter the silence of contemplation. (To be continued)

    Sunday, April 22, 2007

    SAMSKARAS, ARCHETYPES, AND THE BIRTH OF DUALITY

    F.: Samskaras, involving memories and mental impressions, are by definition “of or pertaining to the mind,” and “the mind” over the ages has devolved into nothing more than a repository of lies and concepts that are to be transitioned if Realization is to happen. (NOTE: Such "impressions" are quite different from one property of the manifested consciousness, namely that which allows for “non-personal communication” as consciousness speaks to consciousness without bounds. An example of that was offered earlier when a woman named Elaine in Louisiana awakened abruptly at 4:30 A.M. CST and became aware of the fact that her daughter LeeAnn, in California at 2:30 A.M. PST, had been involved in an accident.)

    Over the last several million years as the brain evolved from an organ the size of 400 mls to one that is over 1400 mls, two "new" sections developed that made possible the storage and retrieval of "memories" and the sensing of "impressions." The intent was for those sections of the brain to facilitate the survival of the species. Thus, if one man saw another walk off the edge of a cliff and shatter on the rocks below, the brain of the witness would record the incident in memory. Later, if that witness happened upon the edge of a cliff, his brain would retrieve the earlier memory from a section of the brain and make the man aware of a threat. Soon, the threat would be given a connotation and a sense of “not good” would be felt every time a similar happening occurred.

    On different occasions, after returning home from extended hunting trips that had ended in success, the same man might approach his mate. Each time he did so, he would raise their next meal into the air for her viewing. They both would develop from those instances a sense of “good,” and that would be associated with such tangible concepts as "having a mate" and "sharing a meal" as well as with intangible concepts such as “homecomings” and "cohabitating" and "caring for" and "being cared for." Human would soon begin to form thousands of images with connotations of either “good” or “not good,” all associated with an ever-increasing number of human experiences.
    Over millions of years, those images and connotations would be stored in the brain’s “newer” section for storage, would be retrieved repeatedly by triggering mechanisms, would be discussed and reinforced once languages developed, and would eventually be passed on as part of the genetic coding. And all of that was based in what would develop into a series of images in "the mind" that classify everything as “good” or “bad.” Those images, and that duality, gave rise to what would be called "archetypes."

    The terms "good" and "bad" would eventually be used by humans to appraise and evaluate and classify and divide and separate all happenings and persons and things and places.
    The concept of duality was born.
    After that, the sense of “separate from” would eventually become what seemed “natural.” From that point to this, not only would the Original Understanding of non-duality be lost (along with the innate and natural awareness of the unicity) but also the Teachings of non-duality would be taken by most to be the “unnatural” perspective because it became the least common.

    The evolution of the brain that generated samskaras and archetypal images (both of which help perpetuate a belief in duality) also laid the roots from which duality would grow. From the belief that duality is the real, all conceptualized illusions of “separate” and “different from” and “better than” would grow. Ultimately, it would be from the conceptualized illusions of “separate” and “different from” and “better than” that all ego would grow, and from ego has come all relative existence arrogance. And from ego and arrogance and a sense of separation have come the desires and fears that generate the perceived need for power; the desire to control; the assumed right to judge and moralize and be “the one who is right”; the assumption of the right to dictate and punish or reward; the need to argue, fight, separate, and engage in wars; and the willingness (and often, indeed, the propensity) to destroy on personal, state, national and international levels. The trillions, and the trillions of trillions, of persons who have died on this planet from anything other than a "natural cause" were actually sacrifices made on the altar of ego.
    The roots of the widespread, insane-like behavior among persons, all embroiled in the relative existence and driven by their concepts, can be traced back to evolutionary events that set the stage for the widespread belief in duality. It can be seen, therefore, that to be free of the effects of all of that programming, conditioning, genetic influence, and enculturation is an awesome and challenging undertaking. Understanding the scope of those obstacles explains why so few will ever Realize, yet for the dedicated seeker who finds a capable and willing teacher, it can happen. Please enter the silence of contemplation. (To be continued)

    Saturday, April 21, 2007

    SATSANGA TODAY

    Teaching the seven steps to Realization today. Postings continue tomorrow. Thx, f.

    Friday, April 20, 2007

    SAMSKARAS AND ARCHETYPES: DELUSIONS AND DUALITY

    F.: A recent series explained how the mind was once an asset but has now become a liability. That series triggered a number of e-mails asking about samskaras as well as archetypal images. Tomorrow, archetypal images will be discussed. Today, some considerations regarding samskaras will be offered, as explained earlier in the following exchange that is an extract from the soon-to-be-published book entitled CONSCIOUSNESS, AWARENESS, AND THE NATURE OF REALITY (Peace Every Day When Abiding as the Absolute) :

    Seeker: And how has my consciousness been corrupted, according to you?
    F.: Via impressions—or samskaras—as my teacher called them. Here’s an analogy: imagine you’re at the beach, a few yards from the water’s edge. As you walk, you leave behind impressions of your feet. Are those impressions real?
    Seeker: For the moment, yes.
    F.: Really? What’s real about those impressions? They are only space—nothingness, emptiness—that seems to your eye to be “something” when in fact they are nothing. Will they last?
    Seeker: They’ll last until the tide comes in and washes them away.
    F.: So are they an actual form, or just a temporary space that appears to have shape and form?
    Seeker: OK...they’re temporary.
    F.: So it is with everything you think you see. It’s only an appearance, and appearances are distortions, and distortions trigger misery. You look at the body called “floyd” and all that is there is a space, but you think you are seeing some thing. It is emptiness…nothingness. Just a handful of elements with air and energy temporarily circulating through the space. If you remove the water that is within the body, then those elements won’t even fill a small urn.

    Realization is like the wave that can come along and sweep away all the false impressions imprinted on "the mind." Realization makes you aware that the nothingness that you’ve always taken to be something is not that thing at all. Those impressions were never real. You mistook an empty space to be something, and that’s what persons do all day long, all month long, all year long, year after year after year. Most spend their entire existence convinced that their perceptions are the “right” perceptions when if fact they have never seen anything “rightly.”

    As a result, they will suffer from one false impression after another, not unlike all the impressions in your “mind.” Footprints in the sand appear to have some shape or form, just as mirages in the desert appear to have a shape or form, but the reality is that all impressions and all mirages are just a part of the fiction of the “mind.” To be “in touch with reality” is to be able to differentiate betwen what is illusion and what is real, between what is delusion and what is truth, and between that which appears to be dualistic as opposed to that which is One and truly Real. Please enter the silence of contemplation.
    WORKING ON “THE FINAL PIECE” AND PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER?
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  • Thursday, April 19, 2007

    PERSONALITY DISORDERS VS. MENTAL ILLNESS: What the Advaita Teachings Can Address and What They Cannot, Part Two, The Conclusion

    F.: Yesterday, the God Complex, depression, personality disorders, ego and ego-states were mentioned as some of the causes of the misery and suffering and outrageous acts of violence that (1) mark the human condition and that (2) are often addressed and eliminated via the Advaita Teaching. That said, there are conditions that the Teachings cannot address. It should also be noted that violence breeds violence…that the abused become the abusers. How common is abuse or the occurrence of traumatizing events? While the ego wants to say, “My parents did a great job, all things considered,” (meaning “I turned out great, all things considered”) studies are showing that the majority have suffered one or more traumatizing events by the time they reach their teen years.

    TRAUMA
    Emerging nowadays is a better understanding of the causes of trauma-related stress and anger and rage, of how many are truly being affected, and of new, effective methods for treatment. The Advaita Teachings are not the answer to this problem; instead, professional help from a specialist is a requirement. In the past, the estimated number of sufferers has been low, but now more realistic statistics are becoming available. The problem is common and the effects are widespread. When children are abused mentally, emotionally, physically, or sexually, a sense of powerlessness happens. Later, a desire for power can manifest, and when that desire is not met, repressed anger can explode into rage and subsequent acts of fury. While the Advaita Teachings address the perils of desires (including the desire for power and control), the effects of severe trauma indicate a need for professional intervention.

    THE GOD COMPLEX
    If you study the type of thinking that is generated by the God Complex, you see how rooted that disorder is in duality:

    They need to reform and I can reform them.
    They need punishment and I shall provide it.
    I have the right to judge them.
    I know who is right and who is wrong.
    I know who is moral and who is immoral.
    I can destroy them.

    DEPRESSION
    Clinical depression requires treatment by trained professionals. Situational depression has, on occasion, been addressed by the Teachings. Many who have come to discuss the pain of a divorce receive some respite when they understand the manner in which a threatened ego-state is driving those feelings. The Teachings provided clarity and respite for “floyd” when he was in what seemed to be the depths of fear and depression prior to Realization, a condition which was described thusly in one book:

    He had reached a point where he felt as if he were a pane of glass, held in the hands of the world. He felt as if the thumbs of the masses were pushing so hard that they had bent him totally out of shape, putting him under so much strain that if anyone happened to apply even the slightest additional pressure, he’d shatter into a million pieces.

    First, note the duality: “the masses” as opposed to “I.” Such levels of fear/paranoia and duality and depression, whether clinical or situational, can drive persons to thoughts of harming self or others. Many would suggest that being in the state described above is evidence of mental illness (and it might be in some cases), yet that depression was rooted in the belief that many prized (but false) identities were being "lost." At the time, "husband," "family man," "homeowner," "finance man" and a number of other false identities were ending. It can be seen now that assumed personas and personality disorders had accounted for those depths of fear and despair and depression. How can that be stated with certainty? No clinical treatment was required to address the issues. Realization addressed the issues, and it has been noted before that Realization can address personality disorders but that professional intervention is required to treat mental illness.

    (Again, if you know someone who is suicidal, encourage the seeking of professional help. Sometimes the threats are cries for help, sometimes they are efforts to manipulate, sometimes they are attempts to punish self or others, sometimes they are histrionic outbursts, and sometimes they are completely serious. Many who have written to this site or who have called seeking help were advised to go to their nearest hospital emergency room instead. Only the most arrogant or the most ignorant would believe that their “method” or “philosophy” or “ideology” or “religion” or “program” alone has the solution for every problem.)

    PERSONALITY DISORDERS
    According to statistics reported by mental health providers and/or researchers, a fraction of humans suffer mental illness but almost all suffer one of more personality disorders. That having been said, there are also some personality disorders that can become so severe that professional assistance is indicated. For the “average” person/persona walking the planet, Realization could provide a means for eliminating the misery that is resulting from dualistic thinking and the subsequent arrogance and narcissism and self-absorption; however, personality disorders can reach such severe levels, as reported by the Enneagram Institute, that they too can inspire violent behavior:

    Type Ones can become punitive and cruel to rid themselves of “wrong-doers.” Severe depression, nervous breakdown, and suicide attempts can happen. Type Twos can become able to excuse and rationalize what they do since they feel abused and victimized by others and are bitterly resentful and angry. Type Threes can reach a state of being psychopathic, capable of murder. Type Fours can become despairing, hopeless and self-destructive and can experience emotional breakdowns or suicide.

    Type Fives can seek oblivion, may commit suicide, or can have a psychotic break with reality. They can become deranged, explosively self-destructive, and schizophrenic. Type Sixes can become self-destructive and suicidal. Type Sevens often give up on themselves and life and suffer deep depression and despair, self-destructive overdoses, or impulsive suicide. Type Eights may brutally destroy everything that has not conformed to their will rather than surrender to anyone else. They can become vengeful, barbaric, and murderous. Type Nines can become severely disoriented and catatonic.

    EGO & ANGER
    Linked to the God Complex is ego. Linked to ego is a desire for fame (or notoriety) and respect. Linked to the failure to attain the desired respect and fame are anger and frustration. Linked to anger and frustration are misery and suffering and insane-like behavior. An act of “road rage” where one driver shoots another who “disrespected him” by “cutting him off and taking his place” in a certain lane is not necessarily about insanity. It can be about ego, a desire for respect, a desire for power and control, and about the rage and anger that erupt when "respect" is not shown. Ego is at the core of what the Advaita Teachings attempt to remove. If the understanding of the Teachings happens, what is eliminated is ego-driven arrogance, anger, rage, the desire for power (even God-like power), the desire for control, misery, suffering, fear, and most of the insane-like behavior on the planet. Yet that will not happen on any widespread basis, so ego-states will continue to drive conduct.

    Many ego-states can exist which, if hurt, interfered with, or threatened, can inspire violent or insane-like behavior: namely, “The Spurned Boyfriend/Spouse”; “The Victim”; “The Threatened (Failing) Student”; “The Outsider/Loner”; and "The Threatened Employee"; “The One Abused by Authority Figures.” As that uncle who worked in the mental health field taught, the 1-5% of the people who truly suffer mental illnesses at a clinical level are not the ones who are responsible for most of the crimes of passions that make the news. If they were, then everyone charged and tried would have to be found "not guilty by reason of insanity." That is not the case.

    The majority of the crimes of passion that are happening on the planet have some ego-state that inspires one to “make mountains out of molehills” and then to live in the darkness of the mental and emotional valleys created in that process. Personas have no accurate perspective, but the Teachings can provide a realistic perspective which allows the Realized to witness all in the relative existence from a logical and rational stance. In the soon-to-be-released book entitled CONSCIOUSNESS, AWARENESS, AND THE NATURE OF REALITY (Peace Every Day When Abiding as The Absolute), the following pointer is offered:

    “If not firmly fixed as The Nothing, then everything in the relative existence will be taken to be “something”: a breakup, a traffic ticket, problems with school assignments, problems while seeking employment, problems with neighbors, problems with persons not accepting you in the fashion you expect, problems with persons behaving in a way that is not pleasing to you, persons not properly “honoring you” in the manner your egoism desires, ad infinitum.”

    CONCLUSION
    While the Teachings cannot assist those with mental illnesses (or even those with personality disorders that have reached a violent stage), the Advaita Teachings can address the misery and suffering that is being inspired by the belief in duality and the assumption of ego-states as actual identities. The teachings begin by guiding the seeker beyond body and mind. Advancement along the “path” beyond that point requires the abandonment of personality. The abandonment of personality, in turn, would end much of the misery and suffering and outrageous acts of violence that mark the human condition. Have you taken the steps required to be free of the effects of personality? Please enter the silence of contemplation.
    WORKING ON BEING FREE OF THE EFFECTS OF PERSONALITY?

    Wednesday, April 18, 2007

    PERSONALITY DISORDERS VS. MENTAL ILLNESS: What the Advaita Teachings Can Address and What They Cannot, Part One

    F.: The discussion of this topic is an ongoing one on the site. Why? The Advaita Teachings address personality problems and provide a means for being free of those problems. It will be shown again that there are conditions that appear to be rooted in mental illness but that are actually rooted in personality disorders. Evidence that those disorders can be effectively treated by the Teachings will be provided in tomorrow’s post with a recounting of the condition that “floyd” once suffered. Before continuing, though, two points are offered: (1) mental illnesses that are truly clinical in nature cannot be addressed by the Teachings and require treatment of the type provided by trained professionals; and (2) mental illness affects 1%-5% of the population whereas 95%-99% suffer from one or more personality disorders, to some degree.

    Yesterday’s post included this:

    As this discussion of the relevance of the Teachings is underway, what may prove to be a prime example of relevance was presented yesterday on the Virginia Tech campus. When the details behind the shooting are revealed, it might be found that the shooter was not clinically insane. It might be found instead that the shooter was trapped in an ego-state that he thought was being hurt, interfered with, or threatened.

    Another possibility is that a combination of mental and personality disorders was at play, along with the possibility of an impact from the side effects of certain medications. More may be revealed about that case, but it must be noted again that nothing has ever been offered on this site to discount the toll of mental illness. Furthermore, if there is any suspicion that a mental illness is at play, the advice is always to seek out a professional for help. (That was the message sent last week in a private e-mail response to one wondering how to help a friend experiencing serious delusions. The friend wondered if the Advaita Teaching might help. The severity of his friend’s behavior led to a recommendation to forget trying to use the Advaita Teachings and to contact those in his community’s social services network and find help from the professionally-trained.)

    What is being offered is an invitation to broaden the national and international discussion by inviting persons to consider other possible “causes” for most of the misery and suffering and outrageous acts of violence that mark the human condition and to stop the misclassification of personality disorders as mental illnesses. Why? Because a misdiagnosis of any problem will guarantee a continuation of the problem and will assure that any treatment plan being tried will be ineffective. That lesson was learned early on from an uncle whose entire career was in the field of mental health. As an adolescent spending his summers with an uncle that worked as the Chief Administrator of the Texas State Mental Hospital in Rusk, time was spent with patients there (an act in the late 1950's and early 1960’s that could not take place nowadays).

    Only a small area of the facility was required for the housing of violent patients. Most of those confined as a result of their mental illnesses were docile and gentle and, yes, loving. Helping out in the cafeteria, contact happened with many patients who would initiate conversations, and it would later be discussed with the uncle about how kind most of the mentally ill were. The uncle agreed, saying that most who were locked away in that facility had conducted themselves in a far more civil manner than did the masses that were free to roam the streets. He emphasized that most of the mentally ill in his facility had never behaved as violently as the majority of persons behave, trapped as they are in personality. When persons feel that one or more of their (false) identities are being threatened, those suffering from personality disorders (which are rooted in the adoption of false personas) will fight, attack and destroy as if for their lives.

    So, in light of the happenings on the Virginia Tech campus on Monday, might the Advaita Teachings have any relevance? Certainly, the majority in the nation will dismiss anything other than mental illness as “the cause.” (The Advaitin knows right off that “one, single cause” for any happening is a myth.) Reports that the shooter was being treated for depression have surfaced, yet he was just 1 of 21,000,000 in the U.S. who was diagnosed with depression during the last twelve months. But there were not 21,000,000 shooters in the U.S. last year, so maybe other factors came to bear. One respected psychotherapist who has treated thousands of patients over the years and who has reviewed some of Cho’s history saw similarities with certain of her patients who were suffering paranoid schizophrenia. What several of those patients had in common was sexual molestation as a child, some abused by family members and many assaulted by priests. (It is known that in some of his writings, Cho raised the issue of pedophilia, discussed his anger with parents, and expressed his anger toward women.)

    Further, shooters are common within the U.S. borders. A woman dies as the result of spousal abuse every 6 hours in the U.S. and a man dies as the result of spousal abuse every 8.64 hours in the U.S. And that statistic just takes into account “the married” and does not count those killed during breakups among “not married” parties. Yet more often than not, those are not murder statistics; those are not mental illness statistics; those are persona statistics.

    So another factor to be raised in the national discussion, therefore, is the possibility of one or more personality disorders. Sometimes all that is required in order to believe that one has the right to decide who lives and who dies is to be suffering the personality disorder known as “the God Complex.” If you read the postings in late March and early April on this site, you read about the types of personality disorders that are most likely to appear with each of the nine personality types. Some of you noticed that among all nine of the enneagram personality types, the God Complex was listed for every one. (Of course, when ego-states appear, ego defense mechanisms follow, and when living in ego—as personas do—then the arrogance of a God Complex is common.)

    The God Complex, along with the associated disorders of narcissism and egomania, can inspire lethal conduct. Consider the level of arrogance that is required for persons to believe the following: “I can decide who lives and dies”; “I am a loving being but I can also be a wrathful being”; “I tried to give warnings to this culture to change your ways…now you will pay the price for ignoring me”; “I will be made immortal with this act and will be obscured no more”; “I will go as far over the line as I must in order to make you hear me and pay attention to my words”; "I have been trying to speak out and tell you what is wrong, but you ignore my words and that makes me very angry"; “I, and my important words, will be remembered forever”; “when you ignore me, you will be punished and will feel my wrath”; “sometimes it's lonely being god, having everyone ignore you during times when the masses are so self-absorbed and not knowing how wonderful I am”; “the world needs reforming and I'm just the one to do it”; “when the world gets so far out of hand, a reign of terror is justified to bring down punishment on people and let them see that I mean business”; “I am the judge of what is ‘right vs. wrong,’ ‘moral vs. immoral,’ and what ‘proper punishment vs. proper reward’ is”; “I can create or sustain or destroy you—it is my option…it is my providence.” It has been witnessed that the more "godly" some people become, the more they behave just like their destructive Judaeo-Christian-Islamic god.
    That level of arrogance inspired by the God Complex Personality Disorder is not unique to the Virginia Tech shooter. That is the level of arrogance that many are being exposed to on a daily basis with an arrogant spouse, an arrogant boss, an arrogant person cutting you off in traffic, an arrogant person behaving in an abusive way in a store, ad infinitum. Should the current discussion focus on a "madman" or should it focus on "a mad man" (or "a mad woman")?

    Again, 95%-99% of the planet’s population is suffering from some personality disorder(s), and the disorder that is common to all nine enneagram types is the God Complex described above. So the shooter’s "mental" vs. "personality" condition notwithstanding, the question for those interested in the Advaita Teachings is this: is it possible that you are dealing with someone who is suffering from the God Complex? Is it possible that you are suffering from a God Complex? Ego-states generate egomania, and egomania generates much of the suffering and misery on the planet. With 1%-5% in need of the level of care that is provided by professionals in the mental healthcare industry, but with 95%-99% needing The Understanding that is provided by the Advaita Teachings via elimination of personality, what treatment plan is most indicated for the majority on this planet? Please enter the silence of contemplation. (To be continued)
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  • Tuesday, April 17, 2007

    ADVAITA TEACHINGS: Relevant, or Not? Part Four

    [Topical Note: As this discussion of the relevance of the Teachings is underway, what may prove to be a prime example of relevance was presented yesterday on the Virginia Tech campus. The pointer will be clear to those familiar with the excerpts shared recently on this site from the book THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS “PEACE OF MIND” (There’s Only Peace if You’re Out of Your Mind). In a telephone conversation with Mark Houston yesterday, it was suggested that when the details behind the shooting are revealed, it might be found that the shooter was not clinically insane. It might be found instead that the shooter was trapped in an ego-state that he thought was being hurt, interfered with, or threatened. Mark, having spent years encouraging persons to discard their false identities, agreed. The need for the Teachings and the Understanding may be evidenced once more, but few will ever find this solution.]

    From a site visitor: OK, so I read the posts from the last days, and you did admit that the I AM is a part of the I AM THAT I AM, so the question is, how is any of that talk about consciousness and witnessing have any relevance to the I AM I’m trying to navigate through? Tom

    SUMMATION:

    1. Everyone is on a “journey”—on a search—but only a few can establish a distance that allows them to witness objectively exactly what they are doing and exactly what is driving them. Though many might reach a point where they exclaim, “I don’t even know who I am!” few will find a teacher that can guide them to the answer.

    2. Nonsensical programming will drive most persons to behave in foolish ways. Persons believe they can list exactly what will “make them happy,” but all of their listings are based in culturally-defined “norms” that are totally abnormal.

    3. You have no needs. You already Are That which you seek.

    4. Because that is not understood, persons are on a search instead for (wrongly-defined) "love" and happiness in all the wrong places.

    5. To think that "another" person can “fulfill you” is co-dependent, dualistic nonsense.

    6. If you believe that someone can “make you happy,” you will find at some point that you have also empowered the same person to make you miserable.

    7. Whatever you like for a time will eventually make you miserable.

    8. Whatever you most like will make you most miserable.

    9. Personas are in a constant state of flux, so happiness and unhappiness will constantly “come and go.” You are caught up in this play in consciousness, and it has many characters…some of which you play and others which you take to be real. In that fictional play, there is no stability. I, the Absolute, Am complete stabilization. You, taking the relative to be real, feel incomplete; you are trapped in turmoil and flux. As a result of that constant fluctuation, your favorite sinner will become an intolerable saint, or your beloved saint will become your most despised sinner.

    10. Such is the relative existence for those trapped in false identities and experiencing the fluctuations of a relative existence that is happening without fixation as the Absolute. In your attachment to the play and the drama and the roles, you will walk the stage of the Drama of the Lie and be the mouthpiece of “the something” and the “someones.” I function as the mouthpiece of the Nothingness and the Void.

    11. Being free of the play, and having transcended subject-object witnessing, I see only My Self in You and in all that seems to appear. I see neither saint nor sinner. There are no “others.”

    12. As a result of the fluctuations that mark the relative existence, all of your “relationship experiences” will be marked by the instability of this continuum: stranger -> acquaintance -> friend -> best friend -> lover -> spouse -> one’s beloved -> eventually, irritating spouse -> enemy -> ex-spouse -> mortal enemy. And even if the role of “ex-spouse” is not reached, the fluctuations in periods of happiness and periods of unhappiness will continue as you try to do the impossible, namely, "relate to" That Which You actually Are.

    13. Only the Realized are fixed, stable, and freed from all of that shifting, freed from all of the variety of roles being played, freed of the sturm und drang of an existence marred by “things relative” and devoid of the understanding of the Absolute.

    14. Only the objective witness can “see clearly” and reveal to persons what they are doing, and why.

    15. To be able to witness your self and Your Self requires the transitioning of “The Seven Degrees of Separation from Reality.” [See FROM THE I TO THE ABSOLUTE]

    For those working on issues arising in "relationships" with the non-Realized and seeking solution to “relationship problems”
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  • Please enter the silence of contemplation.
    NOTE: Some have e-mailed to say they’re trying to select some readings but don’t know where to begin after seeing all the options offered on the site. This is for them:
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  • WORKING ON APPLYING THE TEACHINGS ON A DAILY BASIS IN ORDER TO BE AT PERFECT PEACE?
    See CONSCIOUSNESS, AWARENESS, AND THE NATURE OF REALITY: Peace Every Day When Abiding As The Absolute
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  • Monday, April 16, 2007

    ADVAITA TEACHINGS: Relevant, or Not? Part Three

    [Several visitors, after understanding why “the mind” has become a liability, are getting free of additional concepts. For those who asked about samskaras and are now getting rid of another concept, see the posting for June 14, 2006]

    From a site visitor: OK, so I read the posts from the last days, and you did admit that the I AM is a part of the I AM THAT I AM, so the question is, how is any of that talk about consciousness and witnessing have any relevance to the I AM I’m trying to navigate through? Tom

    F.: To continue with the pointer offered at the end of yesterday’s post, today’s post will be directed to “Tom the Seeker,” though you aren’t aware of the degree to which you have assumed that role. Don’t despair since most are trapped in the same ego-state and most haven’t realized that either.

    Like all persons, you are seeking many things. Beyond seeking "others" and "things" to make them happy, persons also seek (1) control and (2) power that will guarantee the ability to control. That becomes the trap that guarantees relative existence imprisonment for persons. Nothing outside Your Self can provide consistent happiness, and control and power are conceptual illusions. The closest you shall ever come to “having power” is to enter into the witness states. Were you to witness objectively, you would see that all of your thoughts are merely flickerings on the screen of consciousness.

    You would see that there are no "your thoughts" but there are only the thoughts that arise as a result of your having been programmed and conditioned to develop a "mind," a repository of concepts and beliefs and dogma/spiritual knowledge (which is only learned ignorance). All content of the "mind" is false, and it is that “mind” that has left you in a position to "try to navigate" your relative existence rather than reporting that you have navigated it to its end and have transcended the relative completely.

    Trapped in the desire for power and control, as all persons are, you want to know what can be expected and what plans can be made so that control is guaranteed. You have not seen your own pattern or that of other persons: that which is unexpected is what shall come, and that which is planned will never come exactly as planned. The way that a character in a John D. MacDonald novel puts it is:

    Not one of us ever grows up to be what he intended to be. Not one of us fulfills his own expectations.

    They who know that They already Are That Which They Have Always Been are free. They who have no expectations are free. Only a fool would say, “I became exactly what I wanted to become.” Only a bigger fool would reflect over the events of a lifetime and say, “Yeah, that went exactly as planned.” And only the biggest fool would believe, “Well, there’s a god in charge of everything, so it went exactly the way it was supposed to go…suffering and misery included.”

    In order to be free of the disappointments of unmet expectations and the disappointment of not being what one wanted or planned to be, find That Which You already Are. I Am complete, fixed and stabilized; in your efforts at “trying to navigate” through this existence, you are incomplete, not fixed and fluctuating. Awareness is absolute; consciousness is relative. You are trapped in consciousness, specifically, in contaminated consciousness. Therefore you cannot be absolutely free. Since the relative is always in motion, always in a state of flux, your relative experiences will require that you always be in motion, in flux. Ego is about going and doing and zooming, so no persona has any tolerance at all for stillness. Therefore your sense of freedom, like your sense of happiness, will come and go, at best.

    In “trying to navigate” through your relative existence, you reveal another role that you’re playing: “Tom the Captain,” the one in charge of where the ship goes and how the ship goes. (Again, there’s that desire for control.) Everything in the relative existence which involves “trying” is always wearisome and frustrating and tiresome. Who could possibly feel any sense of freedom or joy if the life they are trying to negotiate is wearisome and frustrating and tiresome? Were you to Realize, you could understand the complete compatibility of the I AM you mentioned and the I AM THAT. You would understand that passions can be felt, that dispassionate actions can happen, and that you need not become a forest dweller in order to “navigate” the I-Amness or to try to be free of having to try so hard as a result of your unmet desires and your perceived fears.

    Knowing the Perfect Self, You would reach that state wherein nothing can be added and wherein nothing can be taken away. When it is known that nothing can be added, how could any nagging desire manifest? When it is known that nothing can be taken away, how could any nagging fear manifest? To know that You Are beyond being added to or stripped of, to know that You Are beyond the beingness and even the non-beingness, is freedom. Only then can you relax. Only then will the restless search end.

    Yet you question the relevance of a discussion about witnessing? The relevance of the witnessing will truly come when you reach the witnessing stages, when you then turn the witness upon yourself, and when you see that there is neither seeker not witness. Then you will understand when it is said that I Am both subject and object, when it is said that I Am the Eternal Subject, when it is later said that I Am neither subject nor object, and when it is said even later that I Am beyond all of that, witnessing included. Please enter the silence of contemplation. (To be continued)