Know Thyself?

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kennethamy
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 08:10 am
@Subjectivity9,
Subjectivity9;91836 wrote:
GoshisDead,

G: The process of finding that all we need to do is sit down is more complicated than just taking a seat.

S9: Is it? What exactly is it about "Stop" that is so difficult to fathom? The mind certainly likes to take what is simple and make it complex. Conflict is mind's very lifeblood.

When we actually "stop" even for a second, what we run into is a "Quiet Calm Presence." Then the mind immediately steps in and tells us that this is nothing or this is emptiness. But in fact what we have stumbled onto is Pure Awareness without any need of an object.

This is probably why some have referred to this state as the 'Dark Night of the Soul.' This is because the mind paints this state in one of two ways: (1) As itself having been abandoned or (2) of having no place to go. But then wouldn't we expect the mind to think this way? The mind has never known anything but dissatisfaction and the consequent search for satisfaction. Therefore the mind sees this is a loss of all hope.

The problem is that when we are in this place of non-becoming, or Being, we simply don't know where we are. It takes some time, just like a newborn baby in order to see where we are and to understand the true meaning of such profound freedom.

G: The capital T if it is the chair of 'we already are and always have been' requires a specific set of blinders to be removed for us to see it, hence the term again enlightenment.

S9: Exactly, so now the question becomes how in "God's Name" do we get those seemingly ever-present blinders off?

I just "Stopped." But, what do I mean by that? What I did was completely except what every wise and enlightened person before was saying. I believed that I (Spiritual Self) was already here and now in the Eternal Here and Now.

I knew that the answer was right here, right now in this room with me, or in this immediate moment and required absolutely no time to come about. I looked around me to see what was eternal, or what never changed. I used the litmus of discrimination, "What doesn't come and go or what isn't temporary?"

There is no doubt in my mind that the mind at one point was a wonderful tool and brought me to the place where I could finally 'Stop.' But at some point, after perhaps this exhaustion you speak of starts to set in, we must finally "Stop". It is the only way.

When the Buddha became enlightened, He had just previously stopped and taken his seat under the Bodhi tree. (A metaphor for exactly what I am trying to say)

However when his friends saw him later, after he was enlightened, they simply thought he had failed, or quit, or simply abandoned the path. In fact, what he had done was "Wake Up," to who he was, and the Ultimate Reality of that.


Subjectivity9


The great danger of "arguing" that if you could see what only I can see, and know what only I can know (for I am enlightened and you are not) is that it has been used by every crackpot tyrant since time began. Hitler persuaded the German people that only he saw and knew, and we saw what happened then. It is for this reason that science insists on on publicity of acceptable knowledge.
 
Subjectivity9
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 09:42 am
@richrf,
Kennethamy,

I believe that if you were to look into the Enlightenment traditions that have been around for centuries and practiced by literally millions of people, you would not venture to say that I am out there swinging by myself. Ah contra!

I have no doubt that you are seeing what I am saying as impossible to understand, but that does not in itself prove that I am selling snake oil.

There is no thing that is good, which cannot equally be used for evil purposes. It is true. But this does not mean that we should get rid of everything that has the possibility for powerful good advantage, just to be on the safe side. (“Cut off our nose to spite our face.”) :-}

I am sure that anything as new as this seems to be to you, must be a little frightening. I caution you to give it time and look into understanding it, rather than cutting yourself off from such great advantage. I wish you the best.

Subjectivity9
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 11:08 am
@Subjectivity9,
Subjectivity9;91836 wrote:
I knew that the answer was right here, right now in this room with me, or in this immediate moment and required absolutely no time to come about. I looked around me to see what was eternal, or what never changed. I used the litmus of discrimination, "What doesn't come and go or what isn't temporary?"

When the Buddha became enlightened, He had just previously stopped and taken his seat under the Bodhi tree. (A metaphor for exactly what I am trying to say)

Subjectivity9



Where did you go before you stopped? You took a journey that showed you that you needed to stop. Where did the Buddha go for nine years after he sat down? He took a journey that led him to stopping. Its not like either of you lived life in oblivion then one day decided WTF, if I just stop I'll be enlightened. If it were as simple as that there would be no need for a cycle of rebirths in the traditions that propose the "stopping". There would be no continuous metaphors of the Tao or its equivalent, if there weren't a path to follow before "stopping". These traditions are millenia old, why have direct doctrinal inference to these metaphores if they are not accurate to the situation?
 
Subjectivity9
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 12:32 pm
@richrf,
GoshisDead,

When you fall asleep and begin to dream, perhaps you find yourself climbing in the Alps, is that in true point of fact a real journey? Do you actually need to turn around and travel for miles and miles back to the place where you started in order that you can wake up?

No!

So it is with this dream that we call life or our own earthly personhood. We can simply wake up on any point during this dream journey. There is nothing, no dream something that needs to be accomplished first.

If you were hypnotized into thinking that you were a chicken, and I came over a tapped you on the shoulder and said “Wake up you are not a chicken,” would you feel it necessary to first lay an egg before coming back to yourself?

In the same way, enlightenment does not require a prerequisite to come about.

The fact that most people believe that they are on a journey, that will provide what is necessary to enlightenment, doesn’t prove that the journey is necessary. All that it proves is that over and over again some, no most, people make the same mistake. They believe that they must go somewhere and do something to accomplish enlightenment. They can't just simply wake up in any given moment.

But actually that is beside the point. What we must ask our selves at some point is, “Can I stop?” Can I step off this seemingly endless path? Or must I travel in circles (birth and death) some more, maybe millennia, before I am ready to make that leap?


Subjectivity9__________________
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 12:36 pm
@Subjectivity9,
Wouldn't the fact the everybody does go on the journey prove that it is necessary. Hence the alegories pertaining ot the journey.
 
richrf
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 12:41 pm
@Subjectivity9,
Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
The fact that most people believe that they are on a journey, that will provide what is necessary to enlightenment, doesn't prove that the journey is necessary. All that it proves is that over and over again some, no most, people make the same mistake. They believe that they must go somewhere and do something to accomplish enlightenment. They can't just simply wake up in any given moment.


I agree. But the journey is there and it is for each person to take their journey wherever it might be.

Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
But actually that is beside the point. What we must ask our selves at some point is, "Can I stop?" Can I step off this seemingly endless path? Or must I travel in circles (birth and death) some more, maybe millennia, before I am ready to make that leap?


I believe we make this choice, and those who journey are doing exactly what they intend. While is may seem rough at times, it is also joyous at times, and that is the journey. Better than sitting around doing nothing, isn't it?

Rich
 
Caroline
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 01:24 pm
@richrf,
It's not wherever rich, you're on one now, you make your own journey, what do think you're doing now, living or just looking for a path? You just have to live, create.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 02:39 pm
@Subjectivity9,
Subjectivity9;91853 wrote:
Kennethamy,

I believe that if you were to look into the Enlightenment traditions that have been around for centuries and practiced by literally millions of people, you would not venture to say that I am out there swinging by myself. Ah contra!

I have no doubt that you are seeing what I am saying as impossible to understand, but that does not in itself prove that I am selling snake oil.

There is no thing that is good, which cannot equally be used for evil purposes. It is true. But this does not mean that we should get rid of everything that has the possibility for powerful good advantage, just to be on the safe side. ("Cut off our nose to spite our face.") :-}

I am sure that anything as new as this seems to be to you, must be a little frightening. I caution you to give it time and look into understanding it, rather than cutting yourself off from such great advantage. I wish you the best.

Subjectivity9


What I said about people who believe that only they can see, and only they can know, and that it is they who have the special gift of insight still holds. Those are the people who make a mess of the world. Case in point, the Mullahs of Iran; another case in point, the suicide bomber of the middle east. Karl Popper discussed the whole question in his, "The Open Society and Its Enemies". An enlightening book. I suggest you think about what Oliver Cromwell once declared to the Long Parliament. "I beg of you, think that you may be mistaken!". It is that which is in the Enlightenment tradition. The fallibility of people. "To err is human".
 
Subjectivity9
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 03:32 pm
@richrf,
GoshisDead,

I can’t blame you for being stuck on the concept of the journey. Been there/Done that. It takes some getting used to what I have just mentioned to you.

I fully remember when a Spiritual friend told me about this, “Enlightenment always being instantaneous.” I just figured that he had forgotten about all that we had gone through leading up to this point. I called him a ‘Purist’ in a nice way. :-} It just seemed to me, at that time, that he was oversimplifying.

But over time Spirit teaches you, and things come clearer. Is it that on waking that the dream slowly dissolves? I can’t tell you at this point. But it does seem that concept after concept becomes irrelevant leaving only this strong feeling of Being Present. and that is enough.

Subjectivity9.

---------- Post added 09-19-2009 at 06:03 PM ----------

Richrf,

At night when you are dreaming, in a way this is a little journey. But what is this journey? Is it not just imagination without any real substantiality?

So it is with our waking life as well. All of these journeys/stories seem very real when they are going on. But what do they amount to?

Now I am not debating that the dreams go on and even seem to continue after a person has become enlightened. What I am questioning is, 'what part of that dream/journey is in fact you?'

All mistakes are likely made with good intentions. We are only doing the best we can. But every now and then a Spiritual friend will tell us what he/she has discovered or is it remembered, no matter, and new doors seem to open up for us.

After the Buddha was 100% enlightened he continued to meditate daily. Why was this, do you think?

I think it was because the dream goes on until the energy wears out. (Obviously I am just speculating here.) Enlightened persons don’t become catatonic or just drop down dead.

The real difference was that Buddha knew that he wasn’t the dream self. In knowing who you are, you also know who you are not.

Subjectivity9
 
richrf
 
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 04:43 pm
@Subjectivity9,
Subjectivity9;91985 wrote:
At night when you are dreaming, in a way this is a little journey. But what is this journey? Is it not just imagination without any real substantiality?


Probably is. But it is what it is, and my Soul/Mind chooses to do it, whatever it is for whatever reason. This is fine with me. I don't want to try to out think myself.

Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
So it is with our waking life as well. All of these journeys/stories seem very real when they are going on. But what do they amount to?


Something to do as opposed to doing nothing which would be darn boring for my Soul/Mind.

Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
Now I am not debating that the dreams go on and even seem to continue after a person has become enlightened. What I am questioning is, 'what part of that dream/journey is in fact you?'


I think that everyone is enlightened in their own way and offers something to others - whether it be some Buddhist priest or a beggar on the street. For me, it is all about the journey and the experiencing. Everyone is doing their own thing.

Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
All mistakes are likely made with good intentions. We are only doing the best we can. But every now and then a Spiritual friend will tell us what he/she has discovered or is it remembered, no matter, and new doors seem to open up for us.


I agree. Sometimes my spiritual friend can be someone I meet on the dance floor, on the street begging for money (I have learned a lot from them), and sometimes in a philosophical forum.

Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
After the Buddha was 100% enlightened he continued to meditate daily. Why was this, do you think?


It was his journey. Once you become enlightened you have to figure out what to do next. That is why there is no rush for me.

Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
I think it was because the dream goes on until the energy wears out. (Obviously I am just speculating here.) Enlightened persons don't become catatonic or just drop down dead.


I agree. We keep exploring and learning. There is always something new. Everything is always changing.

Subjectivity9;91915 wrote:
The real difference was that Buddha knew that he wasn't the dream self. In knowing who you are, you also know who you are not.


I don't know what he was thinking. Some of the ideas attributed to him are very interesting. It was but one soul on this earth.

Rich
 
Subjectivity9
 
Reply Sun 20 Sep, 2009 07:38 am
@richrf,
Rich,

It sounds to me like you are just taking things as they come. (Lay back) Is this basically just a part of your character that has always has been that way, or are you into the whole concept of surrender?

When you say that your Soul/Mind chooses to do it, are you basing this on your having seen for yours self that life as it plays itself out is pretty much automatic?

When you say that you don’t want to over think it, (Life or our Spiritual journey), is it because you see that thinking isn’t the controlling factor in this puzzle, or is it rather that you find that thinking too much brings you pain and confusion?

Having asked these questions please let me explain my plight a little bit.

I had no choice when it came to investigating these ideas. Was it just a part of my character or was it what some have called the “Buddha Nature?” All I know is that at my very center was a dissatisfaction that couldn’t be filled no matter what. Pleasure wasn’t any kind of an answer, pleasure being transient. Even if you were totally happy with the way things were or what you thought you had in any given moment, you found yourself worrying about losing your newfound happiness or love object in the next moment, or even much to your disappointment having it ripped from your hands.

I didn’t start off wanting to know ‘Who Am I.’ Originally I just wanted to stop the pain. Or as Buddha said, 1: “Suffering is.” 2: “Suffering can be made to stop.”

(Incidentally, I am not a Buddhist. But I find him to be one of the greatest psychologists to have ever lived.)

Very often I saw this search as futile. I, time and again, simply decided to turn my back on it and walk away. But this didn’t seem to be in the cards for me. This search had me hooked. Was it an addiction I asked myself more than once? Little matter, it didn’t seem to be a thing of choice.

Some might say that the call to this search is a matter of Spiritual Maturation. I on the other hand believe that this is going on in every heart. Some persons simply don’t realize it and think that a new car will make them happy.

Some have said that this search is an old man’s game, they having become world weary and seeing the grave looming in their near future. The young are so filled with expectation of conquest and myths about what is open to them or within their reach, that perhaps their eyesight is limited, even clouded.

Anyway, I would be curious to hear what your take on this is.

Everyone in fact is going their own way, no doubt. They are following their bliss as Joseph Campbell has said. Perhaps all that we are doing here is comparing notes, or is it maps.

I heard it said, “You are your destiny.” (An aside: Destiny is a mind thing.)

Down through the centuries, man has longed to understand beyond what this world chose to put before him. Maybe this is built in to our very psyche; this wish to transcend the more limited and finite definition of self.

Incidentally, I too believe that every event and every individual that comes before you is a lesson of sorts. But isn’t that what we would expect from a healthy and growing mind?


I am not suggesting that anyone rush to become enlightened. That would presuppose traveling to a destination beyond what we already are. What I am suggesting is “more of the same” in what you are already doing. Look around, and take it all in, “ALL” in. In doing so, what have called ‘Mindfulness,’ you will come upon the REAL.

Yes, I agree with you, Jesus, Buddha, Ramana, Lao Tzu, and Adyashanti are/were just ordinary men. These are however men who, like myself and many others, became addicted and couldn’t stop, until one fine day they did stop and notice that they were home and that they had been home all along.


Subjectivity
 
richrf
 
Reply Sun 20 Sep, 2009 08:04 am
@Subjectivity9,
Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
Is this basically just a part of your character that has always has been that way, or are you into the whole concept of surrender?


Hardly surrender, if you ever observe my posts on this forum. I am quite active.

Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
When you say that your Soul/Mind chooses to do it, are you basing this on your having seen for yours self that life as it plays itself out is pretty much automatic?


No. We are all making choices in which direction we wish to go all the time. It is like a sailor on the ocean.

Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
Anyway, I would be curious to hear what your take on this is.


Yes, I agree that we are all searching all the time and each of us may be searching for different things at different times. I call it exploration. Sometimes it may be a game of hide-and-seek as children, and sometimes it may be the search for meaning as adults. Sometimes it can be very serious and sometimes it can be very funny. It just seems like we are always searching and after we found what we search for, we look for something new to search for.

Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
Everyone in fact is going their own way, no doubt. They are following their bliss as Joseph Campbell has said. Perhaps all that we are doing here is comparing notes, or is it maps.


Yes, though I would say that it doesn't always feel like bliss, it may well be depending upon how one looks at it.

Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
Incidentally, I too believe that every event and every individual that comes before you is a lesson of sorts. But isn't that what we would expect from a healthy and growing mind?


One can look at it as a lesson, or possibly something else. Suppose one is playing a game of hide-and-seek. Is it a lesson? Yes, in some ways. Is it just amusement to pass time? Yes, in some ways. It is a matter of perspective. Personally, I find myself jumping from one perspective to another throughout my day and life.

Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
I am not suggesting that anyone rush to become enlightened. That would presuppose traveling to a destination beyond what we already are. What I am suggesting is "more of the same" in what you are already doing. Look around, and take it all in, "ALL" in. In doing so, what have called 'Mindfulness,' you will come upon the REAL.


Certainly, this is a real possibility for many, many people. Others just want to sit around with beer and watch a football game. We all explore in our own way, and for me the exploration is sufficient whether or not it is humorous or serious - and it is usually both.

Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
Yes, I agree with you, Jesus, Buddha, Ramana, Lao Tzu, and Adyashanti are/were just ordinary men. These are however men who, like myself and many others, became addicted and couldn't stop, until one fine day did stop and notice that they were home.


And there is always the next thing.


Thanks for your sharing with me your thoughts.

Rich
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Mon 21 Sep, 2009 11:36 am
@richrf,
This much I know to be true, I am far from any stage of enlightenment and am not sure I'll make it there before I die. Whether the the method it journeying, just stopping, or jumping down spinning around and picking a bail of cotton I'm just no there. Somewhen maybe.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 21 Sep, 2009 09:04 pm
@Subjectivity9,
Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:
Rich,

until one fine day they did stop and notice that they were home and that they had been home all along.


Subjectivity


My doodness. Just like, The Bluebird
The Blue Bird (1940 film) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
TickTockMan
 
Reply Tue 22 Sep, 2009 12:10 am
@kennethamy,
Subjectivity9;92198 wrote:

I heard it said, "You are your destiny." (An aside: Destiny is a mind thing.)


Who said that? Did you believe it when you heard it? And what do you mean when you say, "destiny is a mind thing?"

richrf;92204 wrote:
I find myself jumping from one perspective to another throughout my day and life.


You must be exhausted. Or at the very least somewhat dizzy.

GoshisDead;92461 wrote:
This much I know to be true, I am far from any stage of enlightenment and am not sure I'll make it there before I die. Whether the the method it journeying, just stopping, or jumping down spinning around and picking a bail of cotton I'm just no there. Somewhen maybe.


Yes, but are you having a good time right now? I would hope so, as it seems counter-intuitive to be depressed about not reaching enlightenment.
 
richrf
 
Reply Tue 22 Sep, 2009 12:33 am
@TickTockMan,
TickTockMan;92639 wrote:
You must be exhausted. Or at the very least somewhat dizzy.


No, it is a fun thing to do. Sort of like directing a movie and looking at the set from various vantage points.

Rich
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Tue 22 Sep, 2009 11:15 am
@richrf,
Like they say Tick Tock, Ignorance is bliss. I'm down with this life good and bad.
 
TickTockMan
 
Reply Tue 22 Sep, 2009 12:30 pm
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead;92762 wrote:
Like they say Tick Tock, Ignorance is bliss. I'm down with this life good and bad.


I've often thought that the matter of my own enlightenment, or lack of, was of utmost irrelevance.

Does this observation teeter on the edge of oxymoronic?

Or is it simply moronic?
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Tue 22 Sep, 2009 12:34 pm
@TickTockMan,
I figure it like this, the actual pursuit of enlightment is counterproductive, methodical pursuit of enlightenment is putting your own ego above that of the Universe/God/Whatever, and you therefore lack the required humility to be enlightened.
 
richrf
 
Reply Tue 22 Sep, 2009 04:08 pm
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead;92791 wrote:
I figure it like this, the actual pursuit of enlightment is counterproductive, methodical pursuit of enlightenment is putting your own ego above that of the Universe/God/Whatever, and you therefore lack the required humility to be enlightened.


From my point of view, I think that everyone seeks in their own way to learn things that they would like to learn. It is all OK with me, though what I have learned may be different from what others have learned or are learning. We are all in different places at different times. We can all learn from each other - in fact I think that is the reason we are all here.

Rich
 
 

 
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