Thursday, September 08, 2016

Non-Duality Can Be the Ultimate Medicine for the Ultimate Sickness, But It Cannot Be the Ultimate Answer for EVERY Sickness, Part “G”

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TODAY’S CONSIDERATIONS 

 Maharaj identified three of the key symptoms of the Ultimate Sickness as “ignorance, stupidity, and insanity.” Here, some of the key contributors to the Ultimate Sickness and those symptoms have been identified as the commonplace and perverted programming, conditioning, domestication, acculturation, brainwashing, and indoctrination to which persons are being exposed from early on and then throughout the remainder of their entire relative existence. 

Yesterday’s discussion included the pointer that that instability and insanity are induced by cultural influences, that is, by the acculturation mentioned above. Additional excerpts from Instability / Insanity: What the Advaita teachings Can (and Cannot Address) will be shared in that regard:

INSTABILITY / INSANITY INDUCED BY CULTURAL INFLUENCES 

Previously, these points were offered: 

While xenophobia has likely existed since the earliest days of tribalism, it may be at an all-time peak now. 

[It is inspiring and reinforcing a sense of duality-based white supremacy all around the globe which, in turn, is inspiring an increase in the number of fascist leaders on the scene and an increase in hate groups as the followers of those current fascist leaders become more organized. Large segments of the populations in the U.S. and in Western Europe are getting on board with extremist, far-right, duality-based belief systems.]

In the process of self-examination, persons might see, and finally admit, that they are citizens of a nation that deserves none of the esteem assigned by their country's xenophobes and that their country has historically fostered hatred and violence and separation as a result of the citizenry's dualistic senses of superiority and "different-from-ness" and "better-than-ness." Supremacists do love their dreamed up hierarchies and the separation which hierarchies are intended to maintain..

Persons can readily point out the deficiencies of all those "other nations," but they will typically become quite angry when they own nation's shortcomings are mentioned. The harsh reality of an intensive and thorough and complete self-examination is this: you are not better than or different from anyone else because of where you live; you are not better than anyone else because of your race; you are not better than anyone else because of your sexual preferences; you are not better than or different from anyone else because of your political affiliation; 

you are not better than or different from anyone else because of what you think you know that "they" do not know; you are not better than or different from anyone else because of your nationality or your culture; you are not better than anyone else because of your ability to emote but not feel; you are not better than or different from anyone else because of your religious or spiritual affiliations or your religious or spiritual knowledge (which is all just so much learned ignorance). 

Quite to the contrary, relatively speaking, you are actually much worse off - relatively speaking - than persons who do not believe that they are better because of where they live; than persons who do not believe that they are better because of their race; than persons who do not believe that they are better because of their sexual preferences; than persons who do not believe that they are better because of their political affiliation; than persons who do not believe that they are better because of what they think they know; than persons who do not believe that they are better because of their nationality or culture; 

than persons who do not believe that they are better because of their ability to emote but not feel; than persons who do not believe that they are better because of their religious or spiritual affiliations or their religious or spiritual knowledge. But "worse off, relatively speaking"? Yes, for you will go through the relative existence with the arrogant notion that where you live is the greatest place on earth, thus leading you to believe that you are among the greatest on the earth, trapping you in an egotistical sense of separation. 

Consider the examples of xenophobia and false pride which were revealed during a series of Advaita sessions on Skype which were conducted over the last six to nine months, including talks with seekers in Switzerland, The Netherlands, and Germany. [Later, examples from the U.S. will be shared as well because the U.S. may provide more examples of xenophobia and arrogance than many other nations.]

A man in Switzerland came to understand during one of our Skype sessions that, while the Swiss did not openly make declaration about being "the greatest country in the world" (not wanting to inspire "outsiders" to move there), they have silently agreed among themselves that their country has always been the greatest. The man said that he would never use his vacation time to visit anywhere outside of Switzerland because "anywhere else would be a step down." By the end of the sessions, he had undergone a shift in that perspective. 

One of the most blatant examples of xenophobia heard in the past year came from a man living in Amsterdam who revealed his nationalistic pride, chauvinism, and arrogance along with a total denial of both the historical and the current facts about his country and himself. Proud that he had stopped abusing alcohol, it would be revealed during the talk that he still used drugs and that he had an out-of-control sex addiction which was exposing his wife to a potentially-fatal disease. 

That was to be addressed later, but the focus at the beginning of the new session would be on the nationalistic pride which he had revealed at the end of the previous session, stating that "The Netherlands is the greatest country on earth and the Dutch are the greatest people on the earth." 

[The remainder of the conversation repeated here is as close as possible to the way it unfolded.] 

When asked what support he could give for those beliefs, he was able to roll out a list quite promptly: "God made every other nation and the ground they are, but we built our own ground and our own nation; we helped the Jews during WWII more than anyone else; we are more educated, more cultured, and more refined; and we are an open, liberal society that for hundreds of years has been an inclusive mercantile culture." 

When the reply was, "Okay, I'll bite - what does 'an open, liberal society that has always been an inclusive mercantile culture' mean?" 

He: "It means that for centuries both our men and women have been allowed to participate equally in business. Men here have traveled around the globe to sell their services and make fortunes doing it, and we have always allowed our women the freedom to sell their services." 

F.: "Thus your reference in the previous session to the fact that you have 30,000 women within the radius of a few miles who are ready and willing to address your every sexual fantasy and desire?" 

He: [Laughing] "Yes." 

F.: "Or 30,000 and 1, if we include your wife?" 

He: "No need to bring sarcasm into the discussion." 

 F.: "And you think your culture is better than others because it allows you the freedom to accumulate money and then buy whatever - or whomever - you want?" 

He: "Of course! Dutch society and Dutch drug policy and the liberal views we have about sex are unique to the whole world. Nobody else is like us. We can buy marijuana, hashish, hash oil, mushrooms, and paraphernalia legally. If we want sex, we can legally window shop for women along a canal that is only minutes from my flat. We can visit our sex clubs or public brothels or private house brothels or use our escort services and no one will judge us. We can have anything and everything we want. You cannot do that in your country." 

[Note: The reason for the points raised with him was not to begin a debate about whether or not his nation was all good or all bad but to provide evidence that his xenophobic pride was without foundation and needed to be abandoned if he was ever to see truth and be free of his separation-supporting beliefs. Let full disclosure note that my mother was Dutch and that during the years when I was operating a European tour company and visiting The Netherlands regularly, friendships were formed with many absolutely wonderful Dutch citizens. The non-dual invitation is (A) to avoid the acceptance of cultural distortions as truth and (B) to be able to witness all objectively and accurately.] 

F.: "And what of your nation's connection to one of the darkest periods in history, including U.S. history? Your country played a central role in transporting and selling people, specifically African slaves, and from what you have just said, the practice of buying and selling people continues to this day in your nation." 

He: "Slaves are old news, and the women here choose to do what they do - they can quit anytime they want. You know, Floyd, you are striking me as being very naive, so realize that, ultimately, everyone is for sale. It's all just a matter of finding their price. My wife is turning out to be very expensive. Ha." 

F.: "It is not true that those women can quit anytime they want. They are hooked now, but the point of these Advaita sessions is not to determine that one country is good and that another is bad or that "A" is moral while "B" is immoral or that some people are good and others are bad. 

"The point is to burst your bubble of egotism that one country is perfect and better than others. So look first at the facts about your beliefs regarding the Dutch being wonderful for helping the Jews during WWII: 

"The Dutch Green Police cooperated fully with the occupying Nazis, assisting with the pogroms and rounding up Jews for deportation to concentration camps; there were records found in the Dutch police headquarters by the Allies after the war showing that thousands of Dutch people had turned in Jews for a monetary reward that amounted at one time to about seventeen cents per person and increased to more later on; 

"only about one-third of the Dutch were sympathetic to the Jews, one-third were anti-Jewish, and one-third were neutral. So wherefore the justification for your celebration of Dutch uniqueness regarding helping Jews? 

"The point of seeing that the nation you are bragging about has treated many people like chattel - has bought and sold slaves for money, has sold Jews for money, and, like you, still buys women with money - is to free you of your unfounded arrogance; of your dualistic beliefs; 

"of your baseless xenophobic pride, of your false pride, of your notions about being better than and different from, of your chauvinism, and of your notion that other people are lesser . . . are property to be bought and controlled so one can do with them as one pleases. 

"None of the examples that have been offered - of other aspects of your history and your culture and the typical mindset of males like you - would have been raised were it not to provide a counter-balance to the weighty pride you have revealed in yourself and your nation and your nationality." 

[That would be the final session, of course, ending with him spewing forth a few profanities. So it is.]

An example of a recent instance where the online Advaita course, combined with an Advaita Skype session, did bring about a new awareness and a shift away from xenophobic pride came with a man living in Germany. 

After the course content led him to undertake an objective look at his nation and himself, he admitted that he had been raised to believe that "his was the greatest nation that has ever existed." Eventually he saw the duality and arrogance and inaccuracy of such a belief, whether the belief is held by citizens of The Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, the U.S., or anywhere else. 

That point can now turn the discussion to the U.S., saved as the last example because its citizens may be the most xenophobic of all xenophobes. The U.S. is a nation where politicians and patriots feel no embarrassment at all about declaring openly and regularly - especially on television broadcasts where they have a national audience of like-minded-loyalists - that "this is the greatest nation that has ever existed." 

It is a country where on one hand citizens can declare the unquestioned perfection of the nation and on the other hand can declare, "My country . . . right or wrong!" 

It is a country that egotistically and blindly calls itself "America," ignoring the fact that there are other "North Americans," "Central Americans," and "South Americans" who could as rightfully be labeled "Americans" (relatively speaking) had the name not already been co-opted by a nation where most are focused on self and almost never on authenticity and almost never on the citizens of other nations and their rights. 

It is a nation where a former president dismissed a common attitude held by people from around the globe by claiming that "they hate us for our freedoms" while ignoring the fact that they actually hate the U.S. for robbing them of their freedom and, in many cases, for taking the very lives of their fellow citizens. 

Such extreme nationalistic, xenophobic pride, manifesting on a near-global basis, becomes the groundwork for invasions and bombings and wars that are all rooted in arrogance and a dualistic sense of "better-than-ment" and "different-from-ness" and the belief that that "you should be like us, should use our political system, and should adopt our economic system - then you can be great, too." 

The few examples above only scratch the surface of the 190+ nations on the planet where citizens believe that their nation is the best, that their culture's ways are the best, that their society's beliefs are the "right ones," and that their country's history should unequivocally be a source of pride to all its citizens. 

To review a pointer from earlier: "Few will ever come to realize that their racial and cultural roots - while they should not invoke shame - should most assuredly not generate pride, either" but this was also offered: 

Yet "false-pride-based sources (such as xenophobia and cultural arrogance) are often the ones that are most guarded by ego-states and egotism and denial and that most often trigger anger and defensiveness when raised for consideration." 

It is quite likely that the discussions above would offend millions and possibly billions were they to read those specific examples which reveal (1) the way that ego-states function alongside egotism and denial and (2) the way that cultural influences drive behavior as strongly and as blindly as personality, as in: 

"I will never visit another country - it would be a step down" 

"I will use my money to buy and control people and to get anything I want from them" 

and 

"We will invade other countries and tear them down and then enter into nation-building and make them over in our image." 

Can the Advaita teachings address the instability and insanity and arrogance induced by cultural influences? If the readiness has manifested within the seeker, then most assuredly the Advaita teachings can assist with addressing that condition. 

To be continued. 

Please enter into the silence of contemplation. 

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