2 Thoughts from my new book, Enlightenment on Demand

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CFSLos Angeles
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2 Thoughts from my new book, Enlightenment on Demand

Post by CFSLos Angeles » Fri Aug 31, 2007 4:37 pm

Here is some writing I did tonight for my new book, "Enlightenment on Demand" that I wanted to share. It may be helpful to you... or not (and that's ok to!:))


If someone asks me what they can do to feel less "stressed out or worried," my first answer is to change your language. Ex.: Not, “I felt hurt.” But rather, “My mind felt hurt.” This begins the process of separation and the realization that you are not your mind. Some will read this and think one of three things:

3 Types of People

1) Think this is new age spiritual mumbo-jumbo and reject it as they have another belief system that they currently prefer.
2) Not interested in the subject for whatever reason.
3) Sense it too.


Needless to say, I am in group three. For whatever reason I have always been drawn to figuring out "Why are we here... what is it all about?" Thus the search through being born Jewish, than becoming a born again Christian in my early twenties (you can imagine how that went over with my grandparents who paid for my bar-mitzvah!), then Zen Buddhism which I liked alot, but didn't seem to eradicate the suffering I was feeling, and now finally presence, i.e., "the power of now" and non-duality (the Indian word for it is: Advaita).The idea is that there is just one, not two as our minds would have us believe. Meaning, "Why don't I feel well?" implies two, the questioner and the person in your head to whom the you are speaking to.

However, what you eventually discover is that this is just a "mind trick" as there is just one. Pure consciousness. Everything else is content that is created from the infinite. Basically anything that can die or end, i.e., trees, animals, people, thoughts, etc. is content. YOU however are NOT content. You are that which content comes from. Thus you cannot be content, but most of us still think we are Jane or Bill, which is nothing but a collection of thoughts and images held together by memory... all of which is, yep, content!

One must quiet the mind, and silently observe ones thoughts without judgment. You just notice them coming and going like the wind. Suddenly, the worrisome thoughts become less and less as our true nature begins to reveal itself. The peace of mind that so many search for outside of themselves, money, sex, power, etc. never fills the void because it is content.

Momentarily the money may make you feel better because in that moment you tell yourself you are fulfilled and "think" it was because of the money and so the mind settles down for a bit. The reality is that you stopped looking for something for the moment to make you happy and so you were content. But it wasn't the money, but the stopping to look that was responsible for your good mood.The problem is worry creeps back into the mind as it then concerns itself with "holding on" to the money or acquiring still more of it! Like a drug, the mind continually seeks content to stem its never ending addiction. For many the cycle continues for their entire life. For others, it takes a tragic event to shake them up and make them question their current priorities and come to the realization that that which they thought would make them happy simply doesn't work.

The trap is not to fill the void with more content. Even "trying to become enlightened" is a subtle trap as it implies that where you are right here and now is insufficient. When you fully grasp that right here and now is all that there is and it is just as it should be, and you let go of resisting anything in the moment, the result is a profound and unconditional acceptance of who you are which needs nothing because it has stopped chasing. Funny, that learning how to just "be" can be so difficult for many of us. However, help is all around you. Just look at your dog, cat, fish or even a plant, and notice how content the present moment is for them/it. Why? Because they/it has no desire to be anywhere else or be doing anything else! Believe it or not, even a rock can teach you presence if you tune into it!

Love and Serenity,

Michael

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kiki
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Post by kiki » Fri Aug 31, 2007 6:41 pm

Good luck with your book, Michael.

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Post by CFSLos Angeles » Sat Sep 01, 2007 9:05 am

I received the follow message from kiki on Fri Aug 31, 2007 6:42 pm and felt it was a good question and that others might be interested in my reply:
Hi Michael,

I was just wondering what the motivation was for writing your book. Have you had some unique insight the ET or others haven't touched on?

keith

Hi Keith,

I wrote a popular 511 page book on public speaking 11 years ago called "Success Secrets of the Motivational Superstars" (it still sells on amazon) where I interviewed Wayne Dyer, Tony Robbins, Brian Tracy, Les Brown, Barbara de Angelis and other great motivational speakers.

However, back then I was not aware of Tolle or his teachings (since he hadn't published anything yet!) and so now I wish to share my thoughts that as great as SSOTMS was (it covers more traditional things like goal setting, believing in yourself, never giving up, how to connect with your audience, etc.), the final and missing link is the power of now and non-duality. Do I have anything original to add to what Tolle or others have said? NO and YES!:)

NO, because in my eyes nobody says it clearer or understands the material better than Tolle (that's why we are all here, yes?). However, I still love and learn a lot from other great teachers/writers such as Adyashanti, Gangaji, Jean Klein, Jeff Foster, Sri Nisargadatta, Leonard Jacobson, etc.

And so that is why I say YES, that what I have to add is my own unique personal stories and ways of viewing/using the life changing material of present moment living and non-duality. So just as all these other teachers have helped me learn the concepts even deeper or in a new way through their unique world view/experience, I believe (rightly or wrongly! :))
that what I have to say will touch others and help them see these universal truths even more clearly.

Love and Serenity,

Michael

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Post by CFSLos Angeles » Sat Sep 01, 2007 9:39 am

p.s. as i just said in my message reply to weichen, keep in mind (;)) that while this material is basic 101 stuff to those that come to this wonderful forum, there is still 95% of the population that this is all new too.

so, while i post here to get valuable feedback from you, my peers and like minded (:)) souls, my target audience are those that are still searching and thus still experiencing the daily stresses and worries that plague most of the citizens on planet earth.

as you can see every day on the news with all the violence and war going on, even if my book had nothing whatsover new in it, it would still be a blessing to whoever picked it up and really needed it at that moment in their life.

It seems to me that the idea that you shouldn't write a book if you don't have something completely new or orginal to say stems from the ego and prevents many writers from ever finishing their book!

love and serenity,

michael

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Post by Webwanderer » Sat Sep 01, 2007 1:17 pm

I agree Michael, there is always room for the expression of quality insight. There seems to be a torrent of non-dual writings appearing in the world of late, but who knows what unique perspective holds the key to someones awakening.

Even if a book sits on the shelf and no one reads it, the very act of embodying the genuine understanding necessary to express with clarity, brings just that much more lucidity into form. If such effort transforms no one but you, the value to the world is immeasurable. Light one candle against the dark and the whole world shines brighter.

Keep writing and good luck.

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Enlightenment of Demand

Post by NoordZee » Sat Sep 15, 2007 6:30 am

Hi Michael,
Funny, that learning how to just "be" can be so difficult for many of us. However, help is all around you.
Yes, I would belong to your target audience. As I have written elsewhere in this forum, knowing is one thing, putting it into practice is quite something else. Comments that authors should only write something completely new about a given subject are not very realistic. You would quickly run out of authors. My opinion is that each author, such as yourself, would share his/her own unique insight on the subject on hand. Sometimes it takes a different explanation regarding a specific issue that will enable some people to understand this for the first time. At the very least, additional personal explanations that apply to a given subject will almost invariably enhance the understanding of the reader who has already read books on the same subject.

I know that you 'should not try' to achieve enlightenment, as all you should do is to awaken you awareness of the present moment. You cannot search for something that you have already. Notwithstanding my comments, I am longing for the day that the penny drops, that I suddenly have that much needed insight and understanding that would enable me to recognise and appreciate the present moment and accept it for what it is without judgment. Sorry, this sentence is longer than I wanted it to be :) I need this feeling of peace so badly!!!
"Veritas vos liberabit"

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Post by Webwanderer » Sat Sep 15, 2007 3:40 pm

NoordZee wrote:I know that you 'should not try' to achieve enlightenment, as all you should do is to awaken you awareness of the present moment. You cannot search for something that you have already. Notwithstanding my comments, I am longing for the day that the penny drops, that I suddenly have that much needed insight and understanding that would enable me to recognise and appreciate the present moment and accept it for what it is without judgment. Sorry, this sentence is longer than I wanted it to be :) I need this feeling of peace so badly!!!
You know this day will never come. It cannot come because it is already here. You said it yourself. "You cannot search for something that you have already." Act on that knowledge, stop the search. It is the ego-mind that is searching and that is the identification trap. Present-Aware silence will clear the angst.

That longing you feel is just part of the present content like everything else in this moment. It's ego generated of course, but that doesn't mean you can't accept longing like any other "thing". Stand back and look at your longing and your need to "feel" peace in the same way you look at any other curiosity. Not through mental analysis, but rather experience it, like the tasting of an orange. (You don't have to become the orange) Then look at your looking. Get out of the movie's story and back to the seat of clarity.

Find within you the silent observer and dwell as that. Maybe only a little at first, but with continued experience that clarity will linger and deepen. It is in this silence that longing and resistance wain.

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Post by kiki » Sat Sep 15, 2007 5:13 pm

webwanderer wrote:Get out of the movie's story and back to the seat of clarity.
I love how you expressed this; so simple yet right to the heart of it.

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Post by dancer » Sat Sep 15, 2007 5:50 pm

Hi NoordZee,
I know that you 'should not try' to achieve enlightenment, as all you should do is to awaken you awareness of the present moment.
There is another possibility, and I think I may be reading it in your post. There's the possibility of wanting enlightenment so bad that nothing else matters. There's the story of a Zen master who holds the student underwater and won't allow him to surface and breathe until the very last moment and he tells the student that when he wants enlightenment as badly as he wanted air, then he should come back and see him.




You cannot search for something that you have already.
This is true but not if you aren't living this experience.
Notwithstanding my comments, I am longing for the day that the penny drops, that I suddenly have that much needed insight and understanding that would enable me to recognise and appreciate the present moment and accept it for what it is without judgment.
So, if you long for enlightenment so much, that you were to drop any other demand that ego comes up with, with regard to the present moment, then what?


Sorry, this sentence is longer than I wanted it to be I need this feeling of peace so badly!!!
Needing enlightenment so badly is a wonderful portal into the here and now. What if you were to allow it all so completely, as if you had chosen it yourself.
:)

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Post by CFSLos Angeles » Sat Sep 15, 2007 10:08 pm

Hi Noordzee,

First, thank you for your reply to my orginal post. Secondly, I would like to respectfully draw your attention to the follow quote you made:
I am longing for the day that the penny drops, that I suddenly have that much needed insight and understanding that would enable me to recognise and appreciate the present moment and accept it for what it is without judgment.


If you were coaching someone else, what would jump out at you about this statement?

Well, hopefully you spotted "I'm longing for the day..." As you know, this implies "future." However, since what you are apparently seeking only exists NOW, you will never find it in the future. It is impossible.

and the remaining part of the sentence is also filled with wonderful clues:
that I suddenly have that much needed insight and understanding that would enable me to recognise and appreciate the present moment and accept it for what it is without judgment
And here your mind seems to believe that once it possesses some magical piece of info or deeper understanding that it will finally be free! Ha! The irony here is that it is the simple act of believing that there is something more you need that is keeping you from being fully present. In other words, although the mind claims to want peace, the very act of making "not having peace" into a "problem" is the cause of all your suffering.

So, where does that leave you? your mind asks. As much as the mind hates to hear this, you simply inform it that the search is over for the simple reason there is NOTHING to search for! And I'm not just trying to be "cute" here. There REALLY IS NOTHING to get! And once you "get" this :D everything is fine just as it is. So, it turns out it's the "wanting" things to be different from how they are, rather than just accepting all as is, ithat is the cause of most people's suffering.

Get it? Got it? Yes? No? Good! :wink:

Love and Serenity,

Michael

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Enlightenment on Demand

Post by NoordZee » Sun Sep 16, 2007 7:57 am

Thank you for those who responded to my comments. I am delighted to have given you these wonderful clues in respect of my thinking :D I do appreciate the various comments.

Michael wrote:
Get it? Got it? Yes? No? Good!
My answer is surprisingly, YES :) With every comment, I discover that I am indeed a prisoner of my mind, otherwise I would not write the way I do. Although it does not show in my posts, I nevertheless feel that I am beginning to make progress.

You all are definitely helping me with your comments and thank you for them.
"Veritas vos liberabit"

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Re: Enlightenment on Demand

Post by eseward » Sun Sep 16, 2007 2:39 pm

NoordZee wrote:With every comment, I discover that I am indeed a prisoner of my mind
Outstanding!
Vernon Howard wrote:Seeing is freeing.
:)

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Enligtenment on Demand

Post by NoordZee » Tue Sep 18, 2007 11:57 am

I have gone through the various posts on this subject again starting with Michael. All on a sudden, things are much clearer to me thanks to the high quality input from the contributors. You know how it is. Sometimes, you needs a certain concept explained in more than one way, before you gain an understanding. I am not at all ashamed to admit that I "felt" the need to have 'being in the presence' explained to me more than once by more than one person.

The more frequently I read the many posts in different parts of this forum, the more I realise how much I benefit from the content of these writings. Today, I applied my increased understanding to something that I became aware of today. Instead of getting into an advanced state of anxiety about an administrative error on the part of an organisation that adversely affected me, I simply just 'watched' the information unfold. I just accepted the situation as it was (is) and determined in conjunction with an accountant what action had to be taken to remedy this event. Even not so long ago, I would have reacted in an extremely negative way and become very morose. I don't know if I explained this well. I AM NOT CONTENT! Thank you for that Michael and good luck with your book. Let us know when you have it available for sale.
"Veritas vos liberabit"

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Re: Enligtenment on Demand

Post by eseward » Tue Sep 18, 2007 1:04 pm

NoordZee wrote:I AM NOT CONTENT!
Exactly. You are not the content of your awareness (thoughts and feelings); you are the awareness itself. :)

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Post by kiki » Tue Sep 18, 2007 4:27 pm

I assume you want to accent the first syllable on "content". :wink:

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