Friday, November 27, 2015

Art: Hildegard of Bingen,
Liber Divinorum Operum: Universal Man.

Jackson Peterson‎ - Dzogchen Discussion

Let’s try this: your default “aware knowing” (rigpa) 
is easily noticed as the first moment of raw sensory experience 
just before the thinking labels and conceptualizes the perceptual moment. 
You hear a “ding-dong” sound purely: 
a micro-second later the mind kicks-in and says “bell ringing”. 
Just before the mind generated the label and concept, there was perfect changeless rigpa. 
That naked rigpa, is always there in the first moment. 
Notice it’s free of mind itself and doubt. 
It’s just aware, nakedly aware. 
Doubts arise in the next moment. 
You are always the changeless aware knowing rigpa and perceptions, thoughts, 
concepts and labels appear next. 
This cycle occurs every second.
Doubts or concepts or perceptions or labels or “me” sensations 
appear without effecting the simple, always present default aware knowing. 
Notice you are simply the noticing of experience 
and that “active-noticing-knowing” can notice doubts come and go 
but the “aware noticing” contains no doubts, just like hearing sounds contains no doubts.
There are no doubts or confusions or issues to resolve: 
just “notice what is noticing” the doubts and confusions 
and see how it’s always independent from being conditioned 
by doubts or perceptions or thoughts or confusions. 
All phenomena appear in the noticing awareness without “touching” it.
Identify the pure quality of that which is noticing experiences, 
and see how it’s impossible for you to be anything other than 
that always present, peaceful and serene changeless noticing; 
the sentient heart of all experience.

A. H. Almaas - Mystery

(Excerpts about the Mystery from  A. H. Almaas's books)

 Inexhaustible Mystery

It is the very nature of the essence of our Being that it is a mystery. It is a mysterious essence. Its mystery is not due to a limitation in our capacity to understand it; its mystery is intrinsic to its reality. This mystery, this sense of indeterminacy, has been explored by many people, and many teachings and formulations exist to describe it. ...the mystery of Being can be seen as having two different implications. I believe that the more fruitful one is not that there is nothing you can say about it, but that you can never exhaust what you can say about it. We can describe it and talk about it forever. So instead of calling it indeterminacy, I think a better word is inexhaustibility: the mystery is characterized by the fact that it is inexhaustible. You can never know it totally.

Spacecruiser Inquiry, p. 12

Mystery of Being

We need to remember that the essence of Being cannot be finally determined – this is what I call the inexhaustible mystery of Being. You can know it and know it and know it and know it, but you can never exhaust it. This is true about any manifestation of Being – in fact, about anything in life, anything you experience. You can know the experience precisely but this precise knowledge is never final. It is this ultimate mystery that allows the unknowingness to continue being there, for regardless of how much we know, we still don’t know. There is always unknowingness.

Spacecruiser Inquiry, p. 118 

Inquiry Takes Us from Knowledge to Mystery

Being reveals its mystery through revealing its truth. By revealing to us more of what it is and how it functions, being shows us how little we know. It also shows us that the more we know, the more we know how little we know. The journey of inquiry takes us from knowledge to mystery. Our inner guidance reveals to us the truth and richness of our Being, but the more it reveals the truth and richness of our Being, the more we are in touch with the mystery. It is a strange paradoxical situation: inquiry reveals to us more and more about our true nature and about reality. However, the more knowledge and understanding we gain through this revelation, the more we approach the depth of our Being, and its essence, which is mystery. To go from knowledge to mystery means to jump into the unknown.

Spacecruiser Inquiry, p. 75

God is a Word and Truth is a Word

The real world is nothing but the beauty that expresses the truth, the reality, the mystery that, in itself, is completely unknowable and inexpressible. Seeing this, we see that God is not somewhere else, that spirit is not something else, it is nothing specific, nothing in particular, nothing in the past or the present or the future, here or there, and has nothing to do with these. All these things are words anyway. God is a word. Truth is a word. If we are simply knowing a word, what is the mystery then? The mystery is not somewhere else; the mystery is nothing but our world, reality itself when we truly perceive it. There is nothing else, nowhere else; there is no heaven somewhere where God lives, running the show. This is God and he’s not running the show, he’s just living.

Diamond Heart Book IV, p. 264 

Mystery of the Absolute

We can know it, but to know it is to know it as mystery, the ultimate mystery from which all being and knowledge arise. To feel the explicit intimacy of its nonbeingness and to see the absolute aliveness of its emptiness is to behold a majestic mystery, luminous and deep, awesome and enveloping, yet inviting in its annihilating touch and caressing in its melting embrace. We behold a mystery that we passionately wish to know, and we know that to know is to cease being, yet we long to the embraced by its annihilation and love, to be taken in by its cessation. To know it is to cease, and to cease is to know it. To know it is to not know it, but to not know it is to know it. To know it is to know it as mystery. It is the mystery that must remain a mystery, which cannot but be a mystery. Its being a mystery saves us from the obsessions of our mind, and from the false securities that our false self thrives on. We behold it as mystery, a mystery that by remaining a mystery liberates us from the traps of the manifest world. We learn to live in mystery, to be supported by ultimate insecurity, and to love the flavor of nonbeing.

Inner Journey Home, p. 401

Our Knowledge Never Encapsulates the Mystery

The absolute is knowable in the sense that anything else is knowable. We can experience it and know many things about it ........ We can know much about it, but the more we know the more we realize how much we do not know, and how mysterious it is. In other words, our knowledge of it, regardless how deep and exhaustive, never exhausts its truth, never encapsulates it. It is knowable, for if it is unknowable then this is its determination, but it cannot be fully knowable, otherwise it will be determinable. It is the inexhaustible mystery.

Inner Journey Home, p. 403

Participating in the Mystery

So there is a mystery of existence. There is a participation in the mystery of existence. The way to participate in the mystery of existence is to know who you are. And to know who you are is to start from where you are and to be open and relaxed and curious about what you might be. That allows the unfoldment, the emergence of your being in its various facets and dimensions. But saying that is still a little vague. As we know it is not that easy.

Diamond Heart Book V, p. 200 

The Nature of Forms

The intriguing mystery is that the nature of forms, the nature of the body, the nature of consciousness, the nature of all phenomena, includes both emptiness and presence, both being and non-being in a mysterious juxtaposition. This interpenetration of being and non-being in reality is even more mysterious than pure or nonconceptual awareness.

Diamond Heart Book V, p. 355

The Heart’s Love of Mystery

There is another side to us as well. In addition to our relationships, another realm draws the attention of the heart: the love of mystery, the fascination with what might lie beyond our normal view. Since ancient times, human beings have been seeking to know and understand whatever is there. This has expressed itself in many ways—through the adventure and exploration of the external world and how it works, and also through our inner exploration, the quest for meaning and the desire to understand our place in the universe. The question “Who am I?” has been a significant part of our evolutionary story. All the questions that arise at the beginning of the spiritual journey become more scintillating as we get a taste of what lies beyond and a taste of our spiritual being and its vastness, its magnificence, its beauty, its lightness, its unfettered nature. Each taste tends to inspire love and appreciation, to make more love available in every way; and the love grows and expands both inwardly and outwardly. The more we know about our nature, our spiritual nature, the more we love it, the more it draws us, pulls us. The more we feel the expansion of how we view our life, the more we feel, know, and are drawn by and to a more fundamental sense of reality. As our questions are answered, more questions come to replace them. The unknown grows as we come to know it.

The Power of Divine Eros, p. 33

Enlisting the Mystery of Unity

But love has many degrees, many dimensions, and is of many kinds, depending on how close we are to the mystery of truth, the mystery of unity. This mystery of unity has been described as pure light, as enlightenment, as total peace, freedom, purity, perfection. Whatever it is, we are trying to enlist the mystery of unity to help us arrive at that unity by seeing how it emerges in our experience, how its reflection appears in our everyday life. We feel it as a love, as a liking, an attraction that makes us want to get closer. We also feel it as the desire to be closer to what we desire. This attraction is a central expression of life. On the animal level, life is very intelligent. It has learned to use this force of coming together in order to ensure that life reproduces, survives, and continues. What more powerful force than the pull toward pleasurable union can biological life use to continue its existence? Animals do it. Birds do it. Bees do it. Humans do it. They all like it because the power of that mystery is being used, appearing in biological life as the erotic instinct. Initially, this force appears biologically as the desire to come together to continue the race, to continue life. This desire begins as a drive of life for life, and then, in the human being, develops to become a desire not just to reproduce the species but as a more conscious desire to come together, to be close, to be intimate, to be unified, to experience the unity. Human beings have the capacity to know this unity; as far as we know, animals don’t know it. Life is intelligent, as we know, because it is expressing the intelligence of mysterious nature itself. It is evolving so that the mystery can come to know itself more completely.

The Power of Divine Eros, p. 188

All Realizations are Way Stations

On this path, many of the realizations that we learn about seem similar to the realizations of other teachings. We might begin to compare: “This teaching is deeper; that teaching has a different understanding of this dimension; this teaching is a more complete expression of that state.” These discriminations may be true and may contain useful knowledge but, at some point, we understand that it is not up to the individual to choose where to land or where to abide or what realization should manifest. Reality is bigger than the individual. Reality is an immensity, is a mystery, is a Living Beingness that is constantly manifesting and revealing its possibilities. This is why in the view of totality we see the different realizations as way stations. Saying that they are way stations is also not entirely accurate. It’s a useful formulation but, after a while, it is deceptive because it implies going toward a finite end. We might assume that the different realizations are stations on the way to some final destination. But the destination itself turns out to be a way station. All realizations are in fact way stations. This gives us a different view of why we work with aspects and dimensions as we do. We work with aspects and dimensions to learn that reality can manifest in those ways. We also work with them so that we realize them, so that we are capable of being that way, so that we are fully open to Being presenting itself in all these ways through us and as us. It is useful to teach the particular qualities of reality because they help us break out from our habitual ways of experiencing who and what we are. Realizing ourselves as various aspects and dimensions of reality is important for our freedom and for the harmony of our life

Runaway Realization, p. 82  


Thursday, November 26, 2015

Nisargadatta Maharaj - You are an illusion

Questioner: How does a jnani see the world?

Maharaj: A jnani is aware of the origin and the value of consciousness, this beingness, which has spontaneously dawned on him. This same consciousness plays a multitude of roles, some happy, some unhappy; but whatever the roles, the jnani is merely the seer of them. The roles in forms, mental, physical, sensational have no effect on the jnani.

All your problems are body-mind problems. Even so, you cling to that body. Since you identify with the body-mind, you follow certain polite modes of expression when you talk. I do not. I might embarrass you; you may not be able to take what I say. I have no sense of propriety. You are bound by your own concepts and notions. Actually, you love only this sense of “I”; you do everything because of this. You are not working for anybody, nor for the nation, but only for this sense of “I” which you love so much.

Question: But I like to act; I like to work.

Maharaj: All these activities go on, but they are only entertainment. The waking and deep sleep states come and go spontaneously. Through the sense of “I”, you spontaneously feel like working. But find out if this sense of “I” is real or unreal, permanent or impermanent.

The “I” which appears is unreal. How unreal it is I have proven. The moment the “I” is proven unreal, who is it who knows that the “I” is unreal? This knowledge within you that knows the “I” is unreal, that knowledge which knows change, must itself be changeless, permanent.

You are an illusion, Maya, an imagination. It is only because I know that I’m unreal that I know you also are unreal. It is not like this: Because I am real, you are unreal. It is like this: Because I am unreal, everything is unreal.

Consciousness depends on the body; the body depends on the essence of food. It is the Consciousness which is speaking now. If the food-essence is not present, the body cannot exist. Without the body, would I be able to talk? Can you do anything to retain this sense of “I”? As it came spontaneously, so will it go. It will not forewarn you by announcing, “I am going tomorrow.”

A doubt has arisen and you are trying to find the solution, but who is it who has this doubt? Find out for yourself.


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Rafael Stoneman - Liar

You are a criminal because you broke
into my heart. You cornered me and
murdered the ‘my’.

You are a thief because you stole
my mind. You confronted me and
sabotaged my soul.

You are a liar because you promised I
would be enlightened. You made the
‘I’ dissolve and left only yourself.

You are a cheat because you stacked
the deck and preyed on my need to
gamble. You forced me to surrender
when I had no other choice.

You are a harlot because your lips
swore that I was your only love.
You made me fall mad for you and
find out I am not the only One!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Meister-Eckhart - True poverty

Blessed are the poor in spirit

Beatitude itself opened its mouth of wisdom and said: "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven". 

All angels, all saints, and everything that was ever born must keep silent when the wisdom of the Father speaks: for all the wisdom of angels and all creatures is pure folly before the unfathomable wisdom of God. This wisdom has declared that the poor are blessed. 

Now there are two kinds of poverty. The one is external poverty, and this is good and much to be commended in the man who practices it voluntarily for the love of our Lord Jesus Christ, for he himself possessed this on earth. About this poverty I shall say no more now. But there is another poverty, an interior poverty, to which this word of our Lord applies when he says: "Blessed are the poor in spirit". 

Now I beg you to be like this in order that you may understand this sermon: for by the eternal truth I tell you that unless you are like this truth we are about to speak of, it is not possible for you to follow me. 

Some people have asked me what poverty is in itself, and what a poor man is. This is how we shall answer. 

Bishop Albert says a poor man is one who finds no satisfaction in all things God ever created, and this is well said. But we shall speak better, taking poverty in a higher sense: a poor man is one who wants nothing, knows nothing and has nothing. 

We shall now speak of these three points, and I beg you for the love of God to understand this wisdom if you can; but if you can't understand it, don't worry, because I am going to speak of such truth that few good people can understand. 

A poor man is one who wants nothing

Firstly, we say that a poor man is one who wants nothing. There are some who do not properly understand the meaning of this: these are the people who cling with attachment to penances and outward practices, making much of these. May God have mercy on such folk for understanding so little of divine truth! 

These people are called holy from their outward appearances, but inwardly they are asses, for they are ignorant of the actual nature of divine truth. These people say that a poor man is one who wants nothing and they explain it this way: A man should so live that he never does his own will in anything, but should strive to do the dearest will of God. 

It is well with these people because their intention is right, and we commend them for it. May God in His mercy grant them the kingdom of heaven! 

But by God's wisdom I declare that these folk are not poor men or similar to poor men. They are much admired by those who know no better, but I say that they are asses with no understanding of God's truth. Perhaps they will gain heaven for their good intentions, but of the poverty we shall now speak of they have no idea. 

If, then, I were asked what is a poor man who wants nothing, I should reply as follows: 

As long as a man is so disposed that it is his will with which he would do the most beloved will of God, that man has not the poverty we are speaking about: for that man has a will to serve God's will - and that is not true poverty! 

For a man to possess true poverty he must be as free of his created will as he was when he was not.

For I declare by the eternal truth, as long as you have the will to do the will of God, and longing for eternity and God, you are not poor: for a poor man is one who wills nothing and desires nothing. 

While I yet stood in my first cause, I had no God and was my own cause: then I wanted nothing and desired nothing, for I was bare being and the knower of myself in the enjoyment of truth. Then I wanted myself and wanted no other thing: what I wanted I was and what I was I wanted, and thus I was free of God and all things. 

But when I left my free will behind and received my created being, then I had a God. For before there were creatures, God was not 'God': He was That which He was. But when creatures came into existence and received their created being, then God was not 'God' in Himself - He was 'God' in creatures. 

Now we say that God, inasmuch as He is 'God', is not the supreme goal of creatures, for the same lofty status is possessed by the least of creatures in God. And if it were the case that a fly had reason and could intellectually plumb the eternal abysm of God's being out of which it came, we would have to say that God with all that makes Him 'God' would be unable to fulfill and satisfy that fly! 

Therefore let us pray to God that we may be free of God that we may gain the truth and enjoy it eternally, there where the highest angel, the fly and the soul are equal, there where I stood and wanted what I was, and was what I wanted. 

We conclude, then: if a man is to be poor of will, he must will and desire as little as he willed and desired when he was not. And this is the way for a man to be poor by not wanting.

Secondly, he is a poor man who knows nothing. We have sometimes said that a man should live as if he did not live either for himself, or for truth, or for God. But now we will speak differently and go further, and say: For a man to possess this poverty he must live so that he is unaware that he does not live for himself, or for truth, or for God. He must be so lacking in all knowledge that he neither knows nor recognises nor feels that God lives in him: more still, he must be free of all the understanding that lives in him. For when that man stood in the eternal being of God nothing else lived in him: what lived there was himself. Therefore we declare that a man should be as free from his own knowledge as he was when he was not. That man should let God work as He will, and himself stand idle.

For all that ever came out of God, a pure activity is appointed. The proper work of man is to love and to know. Now the question is: Wherein does blessedness lie most of all? Some masters have said it lies in knowing, some say that it lies in loving: others say it lies in knowing and loving, and they say better. But we say it lies neither in knowing nor in loving: for there is something in the soul from which both knowledge and love flow:  but it does not itself know or love in the way the powers of the soul do. Whoever knows this, knows the seat of blessedness. This has neither before nor after, nor is it expecting anything to come, for it can neither gain nor lose.  And so it is deprived of the knowledge that God is at work in it: rather, it just is itself, enjoying itself God-fashion. It is in this manner, I declare, that a man should be so acquitted and free that he neither knows nor realises that God is at work in him: in that way can a man possess poverty.
The masters say God is a being, an intellectual being that knows all things. But we say God is not a being and not intellectual and does not know this or that. Thus God is free of all things, and so He is all things. To be poor in spirit, a man must be poor of all his own knowledge: not knowing any thing, not God, nor creature nor himself. For this it is needful that a man should desire to know and understand nothing of the works of God. In this way a man can be poor of his own knowledge.

Thirdly, he is a poor man who has nothing. Many people have said that perfection is attained when one has none of the material things of the earth, and this is true in one sense – when it is voluntary.  But this is not the sense in which I mean it. I have said before, the poor man is not he who wants to fulfil the will of God since that is self-assertion and greed but he who lives in such a way as to be free of his own will and of God’s will, as he was when he was not.  Of this poverty we declare that it is the highest poverty. Secondly, we have said he is a poor man who does not know of the working of God within him. He who stands as free of knowledge and understanding as God stands of all things, has the purest poverty.   

But the third is the straitest (narrowest, that is) poverty, of which we shall now speak: that is when a man has nothing.

Now pay earnest attention to this! I have often said, and eminent authorities say it too, that a man should be so free of all things and all works, both inward and outward, that he may be a proper abode for God where God can work. Now we shall say something else. If it is the case that a man is free of all creatures, of God and of self, and if it is still the case that God finds a place in him to work, then we declare that as long as this is in that man, he is not poor with the strictest poverty. For it is not God’s intention in His works that a man should have a place within himself for God to work in: for poverty of spirit means being so free of God and all His works, that God, if He wishes to work in the soul, is Himself the place where He works – and this He gladly does. For, if he finds a man so poor, then God performs His own work, and the man is passive to God within him, – again, it is this active passivity; it is being that, energetically being that – and God is His own place of work, being a worker in Himself. It is just here, in this poverty, that man enters into that eternal essence that once he was, that he is now and evermore shall remain.

This is the word of St Paul. He says: ‘All that I am, I am by the grace (that is, the self-gift) of God’ (1 Cor. 15:10). Now this sermon seems to rise above grace and being and understanding and will and all desire – so how can St Paul’s words be true? The answer is that St Paul’s words are true: it was needful for the grace of God to be in him, for the grace of God effected in him that the accidental in him was perfected as essence. When grace had ended and finished its work, Paul remained that which he was.

So we say that a man should be so poor that he neither is nor has any place for God to work in. To preserve a place is to preserve distinction. Therefore I pray to God to make me free of God, for my essential being is above God, taking God as the origin of creatures.  For in that essence of God in which God is above being and distinction, there I was myself and knew myself so as to make this man. Therefore I am my own cause according to my essence, which is eternal, and not according to my becoming, which is temporal. Therefore I am unborn, and according to my unborn mode I can never die. According to my unborn mode I have eternally been, am now and shall eternally remain. That which I am by virtue of birth, for it is mortal, and so must perish with time. In my birth all things were born and I was the cause of myself and all things: and if I had so willed it, I would not have been, and all things would not have been. If I were not, God would not be either. I am the cause of God’s being God: if I were not, then God would not be God. But you do not need to know this.

A great master says that his breaking-through is nobler than his emanation, and this is true. When I flowed forth from God, all creatures declared: ‘There is a God’; but this cannot make me blessed, for with this I acknowledge myself as a creature. But in my breaking- through, where I stand free of my own will, of God’s will, of all His works, and of God Himself, then I am above all creatures and am neither God nor creature, but I am that which I was and shall remain for evermore. There I shall receive an imprint that will raise me above all the angels. By this imprint I shall gain such wealth that I shall not be content with God inasmuch as He is God, that is, inasmuch as I can conceive Him, or with all His divine works: for this breaking-through guarantees to me that I and God are one. Then I am what I was, then I neither wax nor wane, for then I am an unmoved cause that moves all things. Here God finds no place in man, for man by his poverty wins for himself what he has eternally been and shall eternally Here, God is one with the spirit, and that is the strictest poverty one can find.

If anyone cannot understand this sermon, he need not worry. For so long as man is not equal to this truth, he cannot understand my words, for this is a naked truth which has come direct from the heart of God.
That we may live so as to experience it eternally, may God help us. Amen.


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Jami - From all eternity

"From all eternity the Beloved unveiled His beauty in the solitude
of the unseen;
He held up the mirror to His own face, He displayed His loveliness
to Himself.
He was both the spectator and the spectacle; no eye but His had
surveyed the Universe.
All was One, there was no duality, no pretence of 'mine' or 'thine.'
The vast orb of Heaven, with its myriad incomings and outgoings,
was concealed in a single point.
The Creation lay cradled in the sleep of non-existence, like a child
ere it has breathed.
The eye of the Beloved, seeing what was not, regarded nonentity as
Although He beheld His attributes and qualities as a perfect whole
in His own essence,
Yet He desired that they should be displayed to Him in another mirror,
And that each one of His eternal attributes should become manifest
accordingly in a diverse form,
Therefore He created the verdant fields of Time and Space and the
life-giving garden of the world,
That every branch and leaf and fruit might show forth His various
The cypress gave a hint of His comely stature, the rose gave tidings
of His beauteous countenance.
Wherever Beauty peeped out, Love appeared beside it; wherever Beauty
shone in a rosy cheek, Love lit his torch from that flame.
Wherever Beauty dwelt in dark tresses, Love came and found a heart
entangled in their coils.
Beauty and Love are as body and soul; Beauty is the mine and Love
the precious stone.
They have always been together from the very first; never have they
traveled but in each other's company."

 translated by by Reynold A. Nicholson

Ghalib - What’s the harm?

Foolish heart, what has happened to you?
Does this pain, after all, have no cure?

We long for her, and she weary
God, what does this mean!

I too have a tongue,
if only you asked me what I desire!

When nothing exists without You
then, Lord, why this commotion?

We hope for loyalty from her
who does not know what loyalty is

Yes, do good, it will do good for you
What else is the dervish’s call?

I concede, Ghalib is nothing
but if he comes free, then what’s the harm?