Discussion of spiritual practices: awakening, meditation, and the freedom that cannot be lost or found. All perspectives are welcome; advaita, christian, buddhist, islam or even no perspective at all. Just pointing to that which is nearest and dearest.

For some "awakening hints" take a peek at: www.robertflegal.com

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

be still

In spiritual circles the goal seems to be awakening. What is this awakening business? It is something we can discover through effort?

In the end, we realize that 'we' do not awaken, seeking simply falls away and the awakened state remains. In the absence of seeking, there is no 'me'. The 'me' consists only of seeking, seeking things to be other than they are right now which is very very very still.


So ... whatever your practice or beliefs about awakening are, the key is: be still and all will be clear.



Wednesday, April 21, 2010

meditation goals

How would you know if your meditation practice is succeeding? Would you be having some oneness experience? Would you have a quiet mind? Would traffic lights change for you when you approached them? Would your relationships improve. Would you have more money? What would it be?

To know whether any enterprise is succeeding or not, we need to compare the current state of that enterprise relative to some goal. Unfortunately we too often set our 'spiritual' goals from our past conditioning. We often choose our goal to be one that we picked up from some teacher, to erase some past hurt, or to get something we lack. As thought is always about the past, this means that all such goals are just our past conditioning warmed over. New mixes of past thinking are still just past thinking. If we think about it, it is the past we are trying to transcend.

Let me challenge you to make your meditation goal be something that is not some 'new' version of your past thinking. Why not shoot for something fresh!

Why not choose your goal to be one that has already been accomplished yet is knowable right now? In other words, why not choose a goal that is outside the framework of past and future and outside the realm of 'things'.

What is available right NOW that is right smack at the heart of what is nearest and dearest to you? It is simply the forgiveness that has always been. If you make forgiving the world (and yourself) your goal, you will know that you are succeeding when you know that unconditional Peace is who you are.

PS: My wife told me I'd better explain what I mean by forgiveness as there are so many interpretations of the term. As you read this blog, I'd like to to at least know what I mean by the term. True forgiveness is the acknowledgment that the 'incident' never occurred ... that the 'incident' was just a fiction of separated mind and has no reality whatsoever right now ... it's something like a bad dream. Moreover the test to see if you have forgiven some one or some thing is: if you can remember it, you haven't forgiven it.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

the wisdom of insecurity

It is amazing how much one can glean from the titles of 'spiritual' books. Take for example Alan Watt's book: "The Wisdom of Insecurity". We don't need to read his book to guess the main point ... that trying to control everything and clinging to opinions about how things ought to be in the future is folly. Expectations and opinions are rarely in agreement with presently arising reality. Moreover, the only real security lies in knowing that there is none.

During meditation we ask the question "What is absolutely true right now" We turn our attention away from the past and the future". In the silence that presents itself during meditation we notice that we can't control anything that is happening. In that silence, we notice that we cannot predict which thought will pop into our heads next, or how we will feel in the next second, or what noise in the room might arise. We see that wishing for some better 'future' is to miss the wonder and mystery that is here and now. Is it not clear that our attempts to find security is what causes our feelings of insecurity and unhappiness?

I like the way Alan Watts states it:
"If happiness always depends on the future, we are chasing a will-o-the-wisp that ever eludes our grasp, until the future, and ourselves, vanish in the abyss of death."

What is your experience?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

everything belongs

Discomfort arises when we believe that "what is happening right now is not enough or does not belong". Think about it ... what is arising right now is enough and belongs because it is all there is (at this present moment). Things cannot be other than they are.

We habitually recoil from "what is" by expecting something else. This endless judging and comparing causes dis-ease. Judging, for some of us, has become a habit or even an addiction ... happily all habits or addictions can be broken. There is nothing wrong with judging per se: we could not survive for a day without it. But when it becomes an addiction we have trouble, trouble, and more trouble.

So ... give this a try. Next time you meditate just say "YES" to everything that arises in awareness. Just welcome every thought, every feeling, and every perception whether 'pleasant' or 'unpleasant'. When we welcome what is arising, we are affirming reality and subverting the ego's automatic recoil. Then life is seen to be free from 'me'; and desire-less, welcoming peace shines. By the way, you don't have to restrict this "everything belongs" practice to your meditation periods. You can do it anytime.

Enlightenment is effortless. It takes great effort to carry so many opinions about what belongs and what does not. Unburden yourself .... no one is forcing you to carry so much.