Nature and NoMind

This is the place to post whatever questions you have related to the teachings of Eckhart Tolle. The rest of us will do whatever we can to help you achieve a better understanding :)

Postby wildcrabink » Mon Nov 28, 2005 5:16 am

I love the observation about the brain that comes from comedian Emo Phillips: "I used to think the brain is the most intelligent part of the human body... then I realized, well, yeah, but look what's telling me that..." :D
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Postby summer » Tue Nov 29, 2005 6:08 am

:lol: wildcabrink

Phil,
I just now had time to check out your website about your squirrels. It is wonderful. The movies that you share when the squirrels are so, so , so little, are priceless :)

I have always loved squirrels, and now when I see them out in the woods I will appreciate them even more.

Thank you.
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Postby phil » Tue Nov 29, 2005 8:05 am

Thanks for the kind words Summer. I'm glad you enjoyed the site. There are more movies on our main nature site if you care to continue.

Once you got me started, I decided to blabber on about squirrels as gurus here:
http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth ... .php?t=281

What I never realized about squirrels until we lived with them is that they have unique personalities, moods, feelings etc just like regular pets such as cats and dogs. It does tend to change the way you experience wildlife in the woods when you start seeing creatures you encounter as unique individuals, rather than as a generic member of a species.

If you care to share, where are your woods?
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Postby summer » Tue Nov 29, 2005 6:59 pm

Hi Phil,
I moved my previous post over to your new squirrel thread. It seems like it fits better over there.
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Postby be-lank » Tue Nov 29, 2005 7:52 pm

This story is too tender and precious to write really, and I have not written a word about it. But I’ll share the heart of it, or at least the flavor of the heart of it. This occurred about a month ago.

I see what looks like a squirrel playing with its tail through my window.

I check it out, and discover the squirrel is not playing, there is something wrong with her.

It is a brain disorder, a neurological problem- with seizures and not being able to control half of her body. Her left leg and arm keep shaking, and she wants to go straight, but keeps going in circles. Periodically she is able to function properly, but then she loses it.

I spend most of the afternoon with her, knowing she is doomed, there is no cure here. She can’t eat or drink. But this does not stop her. She keeps trying and trying and she struggles and struggles, never giving up. Her courage brings me to my knees. Her purity makes me bow my head. Her innocence makes me weep.

I pet her, and soothe her with gentle speech. I want her to die softy, peacefully, but she won’t have any of that! She manages to climb up a tree- every inch a massive challenge, with me underneath ready to catch her. Her little left arm would shake and shake until finally she would get it to climb another inch. It was the most pitiful of things, and yet also one of the most glorious things I’ve ever witnessed.

She climbed and climbed and climbed. My thought had been she might make it to the first tree limb and then stay there. So if she fell she would not fall far. But she had other ideas and was nearing the top of this very tall oak tree. Now I was not too happy with my judgment. But it truly was her call.

On the ground, beneath the tree, I put a bunch of straw to cushion her inevitable fall. I stood away from the tree and looked at her way up high. It was nearing dark, and I watched as her left arm shook.

“If you fall, I will.” I said.

Right after I said that she fell.

She was this object falling but I could not see where she fell.

I looked and looked, and then saw that she had managed to grip the top of the cedar tree that is under the oak. She was holding on by her toe nails on one foot and her fingernails on the opposite side. Just dangling there. I tried to reach her but it was too high. Finally I said, “Fall to me.” And she looked down gauging the fall, then fell and I caught her.

I carried her around now, she was so tired. But when I put her down she climbed right for another tree! I let her, I don’t know why. I guess because it was finished. I knew she could not climb far. The sun was almost down, and she would not make it through the night. To leave her out in the dark in her condition- no. I would have her die quickly and painlessly. I could have done this early on, but she was not ready.

So she climbed a ways up this other oak tree- about eight feet. Then she turned and looked down at me. By this time we had a communion, we were in this together, and she trusted me. She looked at me, and knew it was over. She could not climb anymore. She gauged her fall and fell right into my arms.

Her trust in me now was the most heartbreaking thing of all. For she wanted to be a healthy squirrel, and I wanted her to be this too, but it was not to be. So her trust in me in a deeper way was that she was trusting me to kill her.

Here is the parallel between us, for that squirrel was very much like myself. And I am falling, and must trust God to kill me.

I brought out a beautiful, soft, rose-colored blanket. As I was putting her down, she grabbed onto my arm for a moment, then let go. She stayed on the blanket, very still, and seconds later her suffering ended.

Though I knew better, feelings of guilt came, feelings of betrayal. That this squirrel wanted to be free and happy, and instead she had suffered and I had her killed. And she trusted me!

But I also knew deep down that she was free and happy now, and that we had spent the day together in a sacred, precious, communion that went beyond the surface appearance of things.

I let it go, let it be, after that. Though I was sad for her, and wished that by magic she could have been whole and well. That I could love her enough to make her so. But all I could do was love her.
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Postby phil » Wed Nov 30, 2005 4:04 am

Wow.

That was a beautiful story. Well done! I tried to share your story with my wife, and then realized I could never tell it as you have, so I sent her here to read your telling of it.

One of our squirrels had "around in circles" disease, so that helped me understand your story.

Your story says so much. Nature is generous, sending a teacher right to your window. Luckily, you were alert and sensitive enough to receive her.

Why do you and I feel strongly enough about our squirrel/nature experiences that we are compelled to share them in some detail? What is it, behind the form of the animal or elements, that we are so drawn to?

I do not know, but I often wonder if it would benefit us to study this with the same determination we study human teachers.

Great story!

Anybody else have one?
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Postby heidi » Wed Nov 30, 2005 6:52 pm

That nature and the stuff in it, which includes us, just is, is why we have this discussion. Animals, rocks, plants, water, sunshine, wind and what we share, that isness, is why nature truly is the gateway.

In another post I shared how I am in joy and presence when just am, when I am the isness of the elements. We are 80% water. The entire mass of the whole human population is the size of a softball when the space is removed. We are so much space. Our teeth and bones are stuff of the earth, we come from it, we go back to it. When we have this knowing we are alert and present, in no mind with our surroundings. Life is good :)
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Postby be-lank » Thu Dec 01, 2005 9:34 pm

Hi Phil,

On the squirrel story, if there is a “getting”, you got it! And that made me very happy. Thank you for that.

My husband and I have lived in the woods for quite a long time.
(Some would say too long, as we’re both sort of squirrelly!) We feed the wildlife- sunflower seeds, corn. And squirrels are permanent residents.

What surprised me the most about squirrels is that they play. Just by themselves and for the joy of being. They will grab long sticks and toss them in the air and dart from tree to tree, roll around, and generally and merrily go berserk! They just have fun. And they are so agile! They have climbed down wires that hold hummingbird feeders
and upside down they managed to drink sugar water.

Once we grew corn, and the squirrels would take an ear of corn, hang upside on a tree, shuck the corn and then eat it. This sight was worth losing all the corn!

I am a big fan of squirrels, but all the wildlife has my vote. They are highly misunderstood.

You wrote: “Why do you and I feel strongly enough about our squirrel/nature experiences that we are compelled to share them in some detail? What is it, behind the form of the animal or elements, that we are so drawn to?”

Eckhart has said that plants and animals are closer to the Source than we are- at this mind stage game. I feel this is ultimately why. Would you rather be with a dozen people, or a dozen squirrels? You know my answer! But as the new consciousness emerges more and more, that answer will change. Behold the Oneness in all!

Oh, love the photo and the “stash’! Definitely some squirrel linage there. And you know that’s a compliment!

“I do not know, but I often wonder if it would benefit us to study this with the same determination we study human teachers.”

Absolutely! Probably more.


I agree with Heidi. Life is good! (even when it ain't!)
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Postby phil » Fri Dec 02, 2005 2:03 am

be-lank wrote:What surprised me the most about squirrels is that they play.


Yes! We get our squirrels before they've opened their eyes, so they have never seen a branch or pine cone until we give it to them. It's a wonder to behold the first time you toss a branch in to the cage. They literally do back flips of joy, they are so excited. They start tearing the branch apart, and then can't contain themselves, and stop and do more back flips. It's hilarious, infectious.

be-lank wrote:Eckhart has said that plants and animals are closer to the Source than we are- at this mind stage game.


Technically, we might say all is the Source, thus no one can be closer or farther. But the point is taken that we _feel_ farther away, thanks to a brain that turns everything in to an abstraction.

Human-centric efforts to overcome the illusion are inherently problematic, because they inevitably involve language, which is irreparably dualistic it seems.

One can attempt to step out of language within one's own head of course, but this incredibly difficult, or we wouldn't all be here.

It's sometimes seems easier to just admit we are clueless, and hang out with squirrels, or a waterfall, etc, and let their energy wash over us.
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Postby phil » Fri Dec 02, 2005 6:47 am

Wow...

The March of the Penquins came out on video a few days ago and we watched it tonight.

Official site:
http://wip.warnerbros.com/marchofthepenguins/

Movie trailer:
http://wip.warnerbros.com/trailerplay.h ... hepenguins

The video tells the story of the Emporer Penquins that live in Antartica.
The penquins look incredibly human like, yet the story takes place in the part of the world farthest from us. These two elements, combined with a compelling heroic love story, earns it a mention here.

Tolle's writings, and this web site, strive to point to something much larger than our thoughts. This movie reaches for the same goal, and succeeds, like few nature movies I've ever seen.
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