A Noisy Squirrel Cage

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phil
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Post by phil » Sat Feb 04, 2006 9:49 pm

kiki wrote:When else could you "make peace" but now?
Agreed. And where am I now?

In my case, not awakened. Finally something we all agree on! :-)
kiki wrote:Forget about "future", it doesn't exist except as a concept.
Agreed again. So why are we talking about enlightenment, something that may or may not happen at some point in the future?

I am not enlightened. That's where I am, right now.

Can I make peace with that, now?

As I type this sentence...

"Ah. Ok. There I am, Professor Duckhead. Blowharding again. Ego-centrically showing off my mindstuff typing talents. Seeking fulfillment in reaction. Embarrassing myself in front of God only knows how many saner quieter people. All is as it should be. I was born to this gift, and this predicamant. It's in my genes, my father's genes, his father's genes. Thank you God, for this DNA you have bestowed upon me, it's been 34 posts since my last confession."

(Just curious, how many retired Catholics here?)

Observing this. Accepting it.

Now what? Accepting that question too. :-)

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kiki
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Post by kiki » Sun Feb 05, 2006 1:07 am

phil wrote:And where am I now?

In my case, not awakened.
Says who? Are you sure of this, absolutely sure? Have you found the "I" that would be sure of anything? Have you found the one who believes he isn't awake? Describe him to me. Isn't "something" illuminating this struggle that makes you aware of it? What is this "something"? YOU.

Thoughts keep coming back saying "I am not awakened", but isn't awareness shining on those thoughts making it possible to be aware of them? They are only thoughts - they will come and go, but the awareness is ever present. This awareness is not mysterious; it is quiet, all inclusive, and completely open to all that arises, otherwise nothing could possibly be known.
Now what? Accepting that question too.
Yes, you can accept on the level of the mind. But, find the one who asks the question "Now what?", find the one who would "accept" the question you've asked. When you are left without an answer there will be no one to ask any question. The nature of what's left can be described in words as "acceptance".

All I am doing with all of these words is to get you to turn awareness back onto itself. Once awareness is aware of itself, then there is the watching of how "doing" arises, the watching of how ego makes attempts at "accepting". Then the simplicity of awakening becomes apparent.

My best to you,

k

edited to add: I am a former Catholic

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Post by spatialbean » Sun Feb 05, 2006 1:11 am

Former Catholic here, as well.

phil
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Post by phil » Sun Feb 05, 2006 2:55 am

Hi again Kiki,

You describe what you're pointing to well.

And I guess you are responding to what I'm trying to point to by saying...
kiki wrote:the watching of how ego makes attempts at "accepting".
Yes, accepting ourselves now, before awakening, could be said to be an incomplete acceptance. Well, at least I can report it is in my case. But you know, the nature of this approach is to accept our limitations, so an incomplete acceptance isn't necessarily a big problem within this approach.

It seems everyone I've ever met within spiritual communities, maybe all these folks, are making attempts at awakening.

Incomplete acceptance, incomplete awakening.

Seems like most of us are in pretty much the same boat, whatever our priorities.

I see awakened folks, well I've heard of them anyway, and I have personally met many people who seem to have accepted themselves, as they are, without knowledge of these techniques.

Honestly, I don't see how either approach has a lock on bringing folks to a place where they no longer have anything to work on. Which brings me to...
kiki wrote:Then the simplicity of awakening becomes apparent.
I know what you're saying, and I don't disagree. I see the point that the actual experience of being awakened is not some mystery state, but is rather so close to us, that we miss it in it's ordinariness.

But honestly, I had a spontaneous giggle when I read that awakening is simple.

You've been working on this since when, the 1970's? Same here.

Thanks to those years, I do understand your post, but if we field tested it on 1000 folks randomly selected off the street I doubt we'd find many who'd be anything but completely puzzled by what you are referring to.

If awakening was simple, there'd be no need for Tolle and other teachers.

It seems to me that an approach of accepting oneself, as we are now, including our imperfections and limitations, is a much simpler, and more immediate, path.

Not saying it's easy either, but surely simpler to understand, and a more accessible experience.

And, for what it's worth, it seems more "be here now" to me than projecting a vision of something that is in theory wonderful in to the future and then reaching for it.

Lisa said we have different priorities. That's a good way to put it. I don't see incomplete acceptance now, and a process of growth to be incompatible. I guess it's just a matter of what each of us want to focus on.

But the idea of priorities implies that we can't have it all at once.

Good discussion amongst a bunch of former Catholics! Thank you all for sharing your time.

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Post by kiki » Sun Feb 05, 2006 3:35 am

phil wrote:It seems to me that an approach of accepting oneself, as we are now, including our imperfections and limitations, is a much simpler, and more immediate, path.
What I am saying is that there is no one here who has "imperfections and limitations". Those two descriptive words are only used by the ego-bound. The ego-bound can accept their (imagined) imperfections and limitations and everything can continue along hunky-dory, but they will still remain identified with their ego and their thoughts of imperfection. Life may be less tumultuous but there will remain identification as an individual separate from everything else.

Awakening is the seeing through of the ego entity as an illusion, and that there never were imperfections in the first place. When "you" as an ego doesn't actually exist there can be no imperfection. The only limitations we have are dictated by the physical mechanism of consciousness expressed in human form. Without the mind creating an ego to identify with, separation evaporates.

When disidentification with ego/mind takes root, the craving for "completion" is over and the spiritual search grinds to a halt. There really is nothing to "do" anymore - there is just the unfolding of the present moment in whatever form that takes.
phil wrote:...if we field tested it on 1000 folks randomly selected off the street I doubt we'd find many who'd be anything but completely puzzled by what you are referring to.
I agree completely.

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Post by be-lank » Sun Feb 05, 2006 6:02 am

Somebody call the POPE- FAST!



(Or in Kiki's case- NOBODY call the POPE!)

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Post by summer » Sun Feb 05, 2006 7:26 am

Hi kiki,
I always love reading your posts. You have a way of speaking to a part of me that I know very well. Yet never seem to be able to express in words.

Tonite, I have a wonderful question to ask myself. What is my natural way of expressing my essence? I know it isn't with words. And I know that it flows through me very naturally.

Thanks for this delightful adventure into..........???

with love
summer

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Post by phil » Sun Feb 05, 2006 3:25 pm

Well done Kiki, sorry to be repetitive, but I continue to marvel at your gift with words. I hope I can say something interesting enough to keep you typing.

Help me out guys!
kiki wrote: The ego-bound can accept their (imagined) imperfections and limitations and everything can continue along hunky-dory, but they will still remain identified with their ego and their thoughts of imperfection.


Ah. Ok. Observing. There it is. Still identified with my ego, and my thoughts of this and that. No need to go anywhere else, will stay here now. Everything is as it should be.

Hmm, you're telling we the ego-bound that our limitations are imagined, and then you're telling us what our limitations are.

Which?
kiki wrote:Life may be less tumultuous but there will remain identification as an individual separate from everything else.
Hmm, Kiki has studied this subject seriously and thus has intellectual understanding AND actual experience of the teachings, whereas Phil has only an intellectual understanding. It looks like Kiki and Phil might be seperate individuals.




All I'm trying to do is create a little space where a variety of flavors of acceptance might be able to grow.




Everything Kiki is talking about is valuable, and will most likely be a positive influence for anyone who can grab the gist of what he's saying. Even if we just learn to sit quietly once a week for 15 minutes to watch our breath, still definitely worth learning.

I'm just exploring the possibility that the overwhelming majority of people who encounter these teachings will never fully get to the place Kiki refers to.

Here we have a room full of people who are quite interested. Which of us is done?

A few folks have a natural ability at this, but like playing the piano or anything else, most don't.

Genes. DNA. Family history. Luck. Whatcha gonna do about that?

Thus, there is the potential that awakening will become just one more way most of us aren't quite good enough. One more thing we missed out on. One more way in which we don't quite measure up. One more thing we need to go get or we're in trouble. One more reason to not accept ourselves, as we are.

I'm just offering a suggestion that taking the teachings literally might be a good starting place that is appropriate for all students, and still doesn't rule out what might happen later for some.

Accept now could mean accept now.

Accept now could mean, accept one's limitations, and gifts, in this moment, including a limited ability to accept.

Now could mean now, not later after something or another maybe happens.



PS. Hmm. Ya know what would be cool? Suppose this forum software had a word counter in the post entry field. It's not that hard, even one of my programs has that.

One of Tolle's little bells could ring when you'd typed X number of words. Ah, time for silence.....

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Post by kiki » Sun Feb 05, 2006 5:30 pm

phil wrote:I'm just offering a suggestion that taking the teachings literally might be a good starting place that is appropriate for all students, and still doesn't rule out what might happen later for some.

Accept now could mean accept now.

Accept now could mean, accept one's limitations, and gifts, in this moment, including a limited ability to accept.
Yes, of course. And at some point there will be the realization, or not, that I, as an ego bound entity, don't really exist, that all the imperfections I had were self-imposed by the illusory ego.

ET's "approach" is less direct on the surface, but careful listening and reading of him reveals the immediacy of awakening in this very moment. He says something to effect of, "You will need time, until you realize you that don't need time to know who you are" - a paradox to the mind, but obvious upon the realization of it.
phil wrote:Hmm, you're telling we the ego-bound that our limitations are imagined, and then you're telling us what our limitations are.
Because ego is imagined mind-stuff, so are any limitations which spring from the ego. Of course there are limitations imposed by our physical bodies - I have yet to walk through walls or walk on water, and who knows, perhaps I'll gain that knowledge eventually. But, the attainment of those abilities isn't necessary for me in knowing what I am in my essential nature.

By the way, if there is an interest in pursuing those kinds of abilities (siddhis) there are avenues to explore. But even in this there are cautionary notes that such pursuit can make you even more ego-bound. Imagine what walking on water could do to the ego!
phil wrote:It looks like Kiki and Phil might be seperate individuals.
Only on the "surface" - in our essential nature we are one - not the "same", but ONE. It is in/at these surface differences that consciousness is enacting its playful nature, appearing as the many only to re-dis-cover/re-cognize oneness. Doesn't that sound interesting and potentially "fun, dramatic, tragic, humorous" and everything in between? Otherwise, what would consciousness "do"? This way there is an almost infinite lattitute for expressing, which can only happen when consciousness has modified itself. This way "kiki and Phil" get to "agree/disagree, explain/understand/misunderstand, argue/make-up", and interact and play around in ways not otherwise possible.

All of this interaction is on the surface level only, and when there remains ignorance of what's below the surface (consciousness) identification with the surface remains, separation appears, and it all gets taken very seriously - afterall, if there is "me" and "other" I have to be careful of the "other" because it might pose a thread to "my" existence. However, when consciousness has re-cognized itself the identifcation gets broken, and all of the surface stuff takes on the quality of playfulness because beneath the surface the oneness is known - it just isn't taken seriously anymore. There is the appreciation of the "surface ripples" and yet there is the "seeing" of the ocean beneath those ripples.

Had enough words yet? :)

k, ex-altar boy

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Post by be-lank » Sun Feb 05, 2006 7:37 pm

"We are all Christ on the cross.
The cross is a torturing instrument and the Divine
in One."


Eckhart Tolle



"God is hiding in form."

"The limited and the Unlimited are in One."

Eckhart Tolle


Form is emptiness, emptiness is form.

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Post by phil » Sun Feb 05, 2006 8:14 pm

kiki wrote:Had enough words yet? :)
Your words, a gentle rain of sound and meaning, dropping musically, drip, drop, drip, upon the patio of my mind.

I'm sitting just under an overhang, feeling the light breeze of your breath, sipping a drink with closed eyes, enjoying your tune.

As the rain comes slowly to an end, I'm welcoming your silence, and beginning to enjoy the anticipation of your next post, and in my slightly inebriated state, not giving a damn that this is a future trip. :-)
kiki wrote:Doesn't that sound interesting and potentially "fun, dramatic, tragic, humorous" and everything in between? Otherwise, what would consciousness "do"?


Well now! It sounds to me like conciousness needs to get past it's ego, appreciate some silence, and stop being so darn busy! :-)

Seriously, let's observe conciousness itself, as you describe it. Playful, not afraid of illusion, using it, going with it, embracing the fullness of each polarity.
kiki wrote:k, ex-altar boy
The kiki plot thickens!

Darn, I forgot, what do they call that ceremony you do when you're going from childhood to adulthood? Confirmation? I remember doing that, and maybe a test drive of the altar boy gig.

You probably won't be surprised what brought my Catholism to a close.

Our church was a block from the beach. You could hear the shorebreak from the pews! In my own youthful but then inarticulate way, I decided to worship nature itself, instead of what everybody was saying about it.

Do you have any idea how hard it is for a healthy 16 year old kid to sit still with Latin when there's an 8 foot swell breaking on the outside reef??? :-)

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Post by phil » Sun Feb 05, 2006 8:23 pm

Quick story, related to religion and the beach.

In the summer, big rain storms usually roll in from the west every after noon (Florida, east coast).

The rain is not a problem for a surfer, but the lightning is. So as kid surfers we would usually get out of the water, and sit under an overhang of a nearby house, and wait it out. After the storm, the wind would often shift around from the west, and that was THE time to be there. Worth the wait.

So anyway, one day, about a million years ago now, I was sitting under this overhang by myself, waiting out a storm.

Professor Blowhard wasn't always a blowhard, but he was always a professor, so I used the time to ask the classic question...

If there is a God, give me a sign.

Waited. Waited. Waited. More rain. Waited some more. Nothing. Nope, nothing. Oh well. So much for that stuff.

40 years later, those moments, under the overhang, being with the rain, asking THE question, are the only moments I remember clearly from that year.

Patience little grasshopper professor, patience.

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Post by summer » Sun Feb 05, 2006 8:38 pm

Phil said
I'm just offering a suggestion that taking the teachings literally might be a good starting place that is appropriate for all students, and still doesn't rule out what might happen later for some.
I would say that "taking the teachings literally" is a sure way to miss the essence of Eckhart's message entirely. The mind would have an understanding of the concepts, that would miss the real teaching itself, which is beyond the mind, intellectual concepts and beliefs, and language.

Eckhart says over and over again, "don't pay much attention to the worda that come out of my mouth. Listen to the space between the words. This teaching is not in the words, it is in the SPACE between thoughts. In the stillness that can be known as unlimited, yet is never captured in the limitations of forms.

The Unlimited gives rise to forms, and is also beyond all forms.

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Post by kiki » Sun Feb 05, 2006 9:09 pm

phil wrote:Darn, I forgot, what do they call that ceremony you do when you're going from childhood to adulthood? Confirmation? I remember doing that, and maybe a test drive of the altar boy gig.
Yup - confirmation. I remember having to memorize all sorts of answers to questions that the visiting bishop would pose to us confirmation students. Getting the "answer" right ensured our salvation, supposedly. My, how nervous we all were, for failure to answer a question correctly somehow showed we were not ready yet in the "eyes of God" to be a responsible Christian.
phil wrote:You probably won't be surprised what brought my Catholism to a close.

Our church was a block from the beach. You could hear the shorebreak from the pews! In my own youthful but then inarticulate way, I decided to worship nature itself, instead of what everybody was saying about it.
Ah... the innocence and wisdom of youth to intuitively perceive that nature abundantly gives opportunity to worship. No Phil, I am not surprised at all.
phil wrote:Do you have any idea how hard it is for a healthy 16 year old kid to sit still with Latin when there's an 8 foot swell breaking on the outside reef???
Somehow I am reminded of Anne of Green Gables as she is being instructed by Marilla on how to pray (she is mortified that Anne doesn't know, referring to her as "next to a heathen").

"Get on your knees next to your bed, thank God for his blessings, and humbly ask him for what you want," instructs Marilla.

Anne, looking perplexed, replies, "This is the part I've never understood, getting on your knees. Why if I was to pray I'd go outdoors and imagine the whole sky as the dome of a giant cathedral, stretch out my arms and then just feel my prayer!"

After Anne has learned the "proper" way to pray, Marilla is pleased, for now she is closer to the saving grace of "God", not to mention that the neighbors will approve of Marilla's guidance of someone ingorant in the "ways of God".

If you haven't yet seen Anne of Green Gables I would recommend it, the first two movies, not the last one. Anne is a curious mixture of someone who is trapped in her identity as a "red head", which makes her feel less beautiful than others, she thinks (and more tempermental), and someone who gets completely swept away by nature, falling into silent reveries and awe. It is these moments that Anne lives for, but she also succumbs to getting lost in her imagination, which is the source of much trouble for her. Wonderful movies, and the books they are based on are real treasures.

And so, drip.....drip.........drip..........drip it goes.

k
Last edited by kiki on Sun Feb 05, 2006 11:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by kiki » Sun Feb 05, 2006 9:15 pm

phil wrote:...I used the time to ask the classic question...

If there is a God, give me a sign.

Waited. Waited. Waited. More rain. Waited some more. Nothing. Nope, nothing.
Listen carefully, Phil. His "answer" is the rain itself, as it pitters and patters, softly proclaiming, "Here I am".

k

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