Conscious living

Here you may share how the words Eckhart Tolle have affected your life.

Re: Conscious living

Postby Webwanderer » Sun Feb 06, 2011 7:22 am

smiileyjen101 wrote:As my tagline suggests - our rights end where another's begin - so where is the line in this?

If it were only that easy. So much in human relationships overlap. Therein lies the challenge of life from the limited perspective - to discover the nature of oneness through the appearance of duality.

I know I have been capable of great learning and growth through intensely painful experiences, but if one doesn't recognize that, there is only the pain of one who is unconscious that there is a higher experience happening.

To the one who recognizes the opportunity for growth in the adversities of life, the path is shortened. To the one who is yet to awaken to such realization, the path is likely a bit longer. It doesn't follow however that these lessons are invalid in the long run.

If I turn to my inner guidance I have the same duality - spiritual understanding, connection with the soul that wants to free itself from the binds of unconsciousness - but because the physical one is unaware of that conversation even going on there is also empathy and compassion for the unconscious physical manifestation of the choices of that soul.

If you recall that story 'little soul and the sun' at what point does a soul recognize that they are not the right angel in body to assist another soul to re-member who they really are? Free will being a physical reality.

ah.. there is likely no answer to this because it is each's choice in the moment - you can only get to knowing by knowing, you can only know you can choose by choosing, you can only be by being.

You answer your own question. Certainly you sense its origin.


Sometimes I think it would be so much easier to not know, but then again it would be so much easier if everyone did know.


There comes a time when we are ready to step up to greater challenges. To deny this is to deny our own awakening. Each of us, of course, comes to it in our own time. Meanwhile, one's genuineness is a living example of love expressed. Who knows the effect it has on those around us.

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Re: Conscious living

Postby snowheight » Mon Feb 07, 2011 8:56 pm

'Trails I do intend to post several replies to this thread so I ask for yours and the reader's patience. Your posts have triggered a font of ideas, most grounded in experience rather than speculation. Some I hope will resonate with a soul or two but I'm sure that not all will.

But I did want to, by way of introduction, state what seems to be emerging from within almost with a sense of urgency.

In Awakening all resistance is dropped. In times of peace it is not difficult to maintain a posture of non-resistance. I find it a sacred Paradox that part of non-resistance is accepting that occasionally we must, in the context of form (in a "Samsaric context"?) give in to the "reality" that a fight is inevitable.

As I nearly slept-walked across the searing nursing home parking lot with the relentless Florida summer sun pounding down on my back toward a cramped, noisy, non-private, none-too-clean and sweltering room in which my dearly beloved mother was dying an agonizingly painful death from bone cancer I had to accept the task of navigating the sluggish, callous, byzantine and over-taxed system of medical checks and balances in order to honor her wishes and get her home. I soothed the self-destructive anxious beast within me with a pack of smokes, a bottle of really good scotch and a few posts on this board and watched it all happen and knew it was the futile flailing of an illusory wailing phantom and accepted those facts and that judgment.

We have form until we do not. While we do there are certain causes and effects that we have to accept such as hunger and exposure. If we are not alone these causes and effects are amplified by our love for those we are with. Another sacred Paradox: love, which is one of life's greatest signposts to that which we cannot articulate is also one of the greatest sources of identification with form. Can you imagine the "Samsaric stress" that simply giving up and turning your back on your career would cause at this point? Even Bhudda's wandering monks had a robe and a bowl ... what is that minimum, that floor that we are to set for ourselves? Is that decision ours alone to make?

You will not keep that job forever and that last blow-up is unlikely to be the last and you are very unlikely to be able to anticipate or prevent the source of the next.

Just as self-inquiry can be relentless and sometimes, in a sense brutal, there is a brutality simply to our very existence here in this world. While we are alive it is a certainty that we will be forced to sometimes drop resistance to a demand for resistance.
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Re: Conscious living

Postby snowheight » Fri Feb 11, 2011 6:11 am

runstrails wrote:because you know better!


do you?
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Re: Conscious living

Postby Sighclone » Fri Feb 11, 2011 6:37 am

Welcome back, snowheight! I think most of us knew you were going through something large...I almost sent a PM a couple of days ago.

While we are alive it is a certainty that we will be forced to sometimes drop resistance to a demand for resistance.


I think that as we "progress" spiritually, what is likely to be dropped is the demand.

That said, a "quality no" can arise....more divine paradox.

I'm starting a new thread on "The Iron Cow of Zen" written in 1985 by Albert Low, Director of the Montral Zen Center -- it touches on the wrangling with paradoxes, and the source of that wrangling.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
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Re: Conscious living

Postby snowheight » Fri Feb 11, 2011 7:26 am

Sighclone wrote:
snowheight wrote:While we are alive it is a certainty that we will be forced to sometimes drop resistance to a demand for resistance.


I think that as we "progress" spiritually, what is likely to be dropped is the demand.



Perhaps what appears as a demand from an individual perspective is in the grand scheme of things a step toward what Thomas Campbell would suggest is the vector of universal purpose. Still seems like a demand to me.
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Re: Conscious living

Postby Sighclone » Fri Feb 11, 2011 8:35 am

To be honest, although I read all three books of "My Big TOE," I got kind of lost in his four new terms, AUM, AUO PMR and NPMR, and how blithely he drops them in and out of his prose. That said, the nearest thing I can recall to "a vector of universal purpose" is the neg-entropic impulse of the AUM to evolve...(Book 1, Section 2, Chapter 30 ff.) If that's it, how does that demand opposition? And if it does, why, as the ever-receding witness, can we not simply refuse to act on the perceived demand?

Andy
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Re: Conscious living

Postby snowheight » Fri Feb 11, 2011 9:21 pm

My experience with Tom is limited to having watched Wanderer's posting of this presentation. In this he states the thesis that the Universe as a whole is, as it dissipates raw energy into entropy, evolving toward a lower-entropy state as a whole through us. Evolving in the direction of Love.I interpret this as a colorized re-statement of the popularized notion (which is the current limit of my effort to understand it) from information theory that the environment encodes itself over time in, among other things, our DNA.

The choice to "resist the demand to resist" by inaction is always one that can be made but perhaps an opportunity is thereby missed on occasion to reduce the entropy of the system by "accepting the 'demand' to resist" and acting. If we are further willing to accept an element of mysticism in our lives, in interpreting uncanny coincidence as a brief brush with the watchmaker (of course there is no watchmaker as there is no watch), perhaps these "demands" arise as part of what I alluded to as the "grand scheme". Indulging the mind in judging a given instance as one case or another, it goes without saying, is most likely a REALLY bad idea. :D

I'll endeavor to give an example which is recent and personal rather than just state some abstract, time-worn near-cliche, and only "near" at that in that the "truth" value of any cliche can always be called into question. As you will see it is not an exact fact pattern match but is interesting nonetheless.

---------------------------------------------

So I was just done with a very satisfying afternoon of skiing and had entered the lodge to change out of my boots and go home. It was early evening, and the after-school crowd was in full-swing with all of the accompanying noise and bustle. As such the area of seating closest to where I had left my gear was crowded and cluttered.

After I squeezed past a gaggle of teenagers and got my hands on my shoes I looked around for a spot to unbuckle, choosing carefully and gingerly moving a bag or two out of consideration for the space that I would invade during the process of un-booting. The gaggle of teens was of mixed gender, ranged in age from about 14-17, and were all very slim and attractive kids. They were arranged in roughly a circle and were talking happily and animatedly but not loudly, for the most part lost in one another.

Abruptly the group was approached by an older guy who had on a vest with the colors of the resort:

(the older guy, sternly) "You know, you might find your little kissy-poo act all cute and funny amongst yourselves but there are other people here"

(stunned silence, everyone looks at the older guy, he continues) "Some people here are going to be OFFENDED by that stuff!"

There was no trace of irony in his outburst, and I could tell from the looks on the faces of the kids that this wasn't just a friendly joke amongst familiars.

The boy who was the primary target of the rage spoke but I could not hear what he said. I could tell from his expression and tone that his response was not disrespectful.

(grey guy continues, in a vindicated tone) "You may THINK so! huh? BREAK IT UP!"

Now the young couple in question had been standing close, perhaps embracing. I hadn't been studying them so I couldn't say for sure, perhaps they were sharing a kiss that triggered this guys outburst. I can say for sure they weren't feeling each other up or otherwise making any sort of spectacle that should have attracted undue notice. In my judgment, they were just being kids.

Mr. Grumpy moved on to converse with another adult and the targets of his rage decided to climb the stairs to the level with the food and access to the slopes. The range of emotions which crossed the kids face was one which I was familiar having been the target of such minor abuses of envious adult authority as a lad of his age myself.

I rapidly filled the space that was vacated by the break-up of the gaggle so that I could take off my boots with more physical ease, and it was fitting that when I climbed the stairs a few moments later with the intent to tell him that "for what it's worth, I thought that guy was being a Dick" the number and similarity of the groupings of kids was such that he was lost in the crowd.

To bring this back to my point above, if I had been quicker on my feet there had been an opportunity. One which I was perhaps 45 seconds off the beat from taking. What I would have done was to interrupt the scene with a comment to the adult. I would have smiled and said softly "Are you being serious? .... offended? .. really?", and would have re-iterated the smile and tried to silently project love to any reply, agitated or otherwise.

Perhaps a missed opportunity to move in the direction of TC's speculated vector or mabe the Universe just responding to my need for the space to get out of my ski boots or mabe the down-to-earth commonsense interpretation that the whole thing had nothing to do with me. Who knows?
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Re: Conscious living

Postby Sighclone » Sat Feb 12, 2011 12:13 am

It is a "quality no." Eckhart wanted warm soup and told the waitress it was cold. I've confronted a few people behaving badly -- sometimes it's successful, sometimes backfires. I think that managed respectfully, these encounters are not resistance per se, just clarifying. Great example.

Andy
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Re: Conscious living

Postby smiileyjen101 » Sat Feb 19, 2011 12:44 am

What I would have done was to interrupt the scene with a comment to the adult. I would have smiled and said softly "Are you being serious? .... offended? .. really?", and would have re-iterated the smile and tried to silently project love to any reply, agitated or otherwise.

Perhaps a missed opportunity to move in the direction of TC's speculated vector or mabe the Universe just responding to my need for the space to get out of my ski boots or mabe the down-to-earth commonsense interpretation that the whole thing had nothing to do with me. Who knows?


I loved this story ^ thank you for sharing snow.

The thing is no matter who chose what to do, or not do, or should've, could've, would've from each of those moments foward everyone there had the opportunity to choose love or fear (consciousness or ego as Dan says).

Imagine say if the teens had 'accepted' that for whatever reason - say the older guy's wife and love of his life had just died and he'd had the realisation he would never feel that warmth of intimate affection again (we can play imagine if till the cows come home) - if the teens accepted something was hitting up against this guy and their actions were unintentional and not something they need start the next civil war against but on some level offended this man's sense of his own space.

A giggle and light apology, sending love to him in acceptance rather than resistance... or maybe I'm just a dreamer. Egoic reactions cannot be assisted by more egoic reactions no matter how well meaning they may be. If you are taking a side and making a judgement that is not love.

If a person is in the midst of an egoic reaction no amount of smiling and softness will penetrate as much as the questioning "Are you being serious? .... offended? .. really?"

The musing of 'what just happened' (for me) is a cue that 'something' happened and what it was is likely to be very, very different from each person's point of view.
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen
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Re: Conscious living

Postby WhatisMu » Sun Jun 19, 2011 3:36 pm

runstrails wrote:[b] However, perhaps we can all learn from each other in some way.


I'd say that is a certainty. :D So very grateful for the ability to share things here!

What you shared brought some things to mind for me.

ET quote's Ram Dass who said, "If you think you're so enlightened, go and spend a week with your parents."

And also...

There once was a farmer in China who had a horse. One day the horse ran away. All his neighbors came to console him about his bad luck, but he was not distressed. He told them, "Good luck, bad luck, who knows?"
A few days later the horse returned and with it was a mare. All his neighbors came to him to congratulate him on his good fortune, but again he would only say, "Good luck, bad luck, who knows?"
A week later his son was riding the mare, fell and broke his arm. Again the neighbors came to wish him condolences and tell him how very unlucky he was. The farmer shook his head and said, "Good luck, bad luck, who knows?"
A few days later, war was declared and all able-bodied young men were conscripted, but because of his son's broken arm, he was not.
"Good luck, bad luck, who knows?"

BK says that everything happens for us, not to us. Is this true? LOL! Either way... doesn't really matter, if it IS, it is. Stress comes only when we feel should-not-be thoughts. There is a problem, yet there are no problems, ever, in this moment. Isn't the fact that paradox and confusion are at the heart of all of it just a great, lovely jest?

Thank you so much for sharing your experience. Cheers!
“In dwelling, live close to the ground. In thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don't try to control. In work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.”
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Re: Conscious living

Postby WhatisMu » Sun Jun 19, 2011 4:03 pm

-How has the shift in perception stabilized in your case (or has it?). I know that there are no problems, ever, in this moment. I also know that I am me, and that there is no fun in it if you dont play it like you mean it. And why not? We can continue to insist we are not ourselves even as we look in the mirror at the face that is our face, and at the end of the day does it truly matter if this is the final or whole truth? I feel a lot of joy in this. It arises naturally. I AM me, and yet not a "me", and am having an awful lot of fun just going with the flow.

-Have there been dramatic samsaric episodes that helped strip your egoic identity? (Natalie and I have described ours above). There have been some stand out moments, but more than anything I would describe a falling away. I feel more me and less me, things which are very difficult to put into words. I suppose the best way to put this into words would be to say that I am totally ordinary, so happy, and having fun.

-Or is the magical extraordinariness of ordinary life more dominant now? Yeah. For sure. The magical, extraordinary ordinary nature of life. :)

-How do you maintain (your ‘practice’ of) awareness? Looking, noticing, or more formal meditations etc.. My spiritual and pragmatic practice has always been mindfullness in whatever I am doing. Being here. Inquiry was an enormous gift that allowed many ruts to become smooth.

-Once a certain level of clarity is achieved, how has your perception of everyday life changed? Has the way you maintain your career, raise children, make decisions changed? Yes. And no. Everything is just the same, everything is completely different.

-Are you in a conscious relationship with your partner? LOL! This one tickles me. My partner and I are fortunate to have shared a path of 20 plus years and to be very in tune, growing at the same rate and in the same directions. I have no idea how common this is, but I feel fortunate. It sounds cliche, but we are happier than we have ever been and we just have a lot of fun.

-Is there more purpose in your life now, a call to teaching or service, or do you find that life has little meaning and that frees you from taking any of it personally. My purpose is to be the me that I am and am not, here, right now. This involves having a lot of fun doing anything that comes my way. Filling my gas tank. Eating. Sex. Laundry. Dishes. Spreadsheets. Driving. Watching. Stating opinions. Laughing. :)

-Are you more fully engaged with life or more drawn to seeking solitude? Life.
“In dwelling, live close to the ground. In thinking, keep to the simple. In conflict, be fair and generous. In governing, don't try to control. In work, do what you enjoy. In family life, be completely present.”
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Re: Conscious living

Postby smiileyjen101 » Tue Sep 20, 2011 6:49 am

I did a search to see if anyone had furthered the notions towards the end of ANE about living consciously in acceptance, enjoyment and enthusiasm and saw how many times I'd dropped it into topics :lol:
I refound this topic in the process - conscious living - beyond noticing egoic thoughts of separation and suffering there is a beautiful life to be lived. It's in this moment and it is in the bliss as ET describes of being at peace with what is, or putting joy into what is or being the arrow flying towards the target and enjoying (putting joy into) the ride.

I watched someone who had 'suffered' ( or more like resisted reality) for a lot of years be in absolute oneness bliss today in a pursuit today; and it spread out, and up and around and touched the hearts of everything and everyone around them. It was like watching a symphony of notes floating into the sky, twinkling with gold dust as they almost literally were an arrow flying.

I can't get the grin of joy off my face nor am I in a hurry to have it fade in my heart.

I saw 'baggage' fall away, fears melt in an atmosphere of 'no need' of no 'gain' to leave only the translucent beauty of being.

I asked how it felt for them, they said - like a privilege.

Do others feel privileged when they are in these states?

To be - is a privilege.
To observe someone being is a privilege.
To share the privilege of being is a conscious and beautiful way to live a life.
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen
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Re: Conscious living

Postby Sighclone » Fri Sep 23, 2011 7:55 am

smiiley -

What a lovely post. Yes, it is a huge privilege to be alive and aware -- at whatever level of awareness we have, because even if our awareness is incomplete, it has a spark of the divine. And to the extent that it is incomplete, there is a nagging sense of that incompleteness...a form of suffering which is subtle, which slightly dulls the sparkle, or perhaps smacks us hard up side the head if we are backsliding.

I think we have in us, all of us, a deep desire for the completeness and bliss of home. And we have a good antenna for that also. The closer we get, the more beautiful the symphony.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce
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Re: Conscious living

Postby aydin » Mon Oct 10, 2011 2:42 pm

runstrails wrote:-Are you more fully engaged with life or more drawn to seeking solitude?


Interesting post. I have a question - the awakening process started about a year ago for me and I feel more drawn towards solitude. I am 22. What does this mean? :D
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Re: Conscious living

Postby magicbutterfly » Thu Nov 10, 2011 7:47 pm

runstrails wrote:Hi Folks,

As Quinn so elegantly put it in another thread this forum can essentially be divided into “How do I get there?” and “What happens after?”.

I’d like to explore the “What happens after?” part here. I’m interested in exploring the topic of how everyday life is lived consciously.

For example,
-How has the shift in perception stabilized in your case (or has it?).
I need to talk about what I am learning and up to now I haven't been able to. I think the shift in perception will stabilize for me now that I have found this forum and can talk about it with others.

-Have there been dramatic samsaric episodes that helped strip your egoic identity? (Natalie and I have described ours above).
One of the more dramatic episodes for me happened four years ago when I was rejected by my lover. I was at home and doubled over in deep emotional pain when suddenly there was a split and there was I and there was the little me in pain. As I watched the little me and accepted the pain, the pain was no more.

-Or is the magical extraordinariness of ordinary life more dominant now?
At times, yes. And then I lose it and go back into my thinking self.

-How do you maintain (your ‘practice’ of) awareness? Looking, noticing, or more formal meditations etc.
I listen to PON on a CD. I journal. I practice mindfulness whenever I remember, walk slower.

-Once a certain level of clarity is achieved, how has your perception of everyday life changed? Has the way you maintain your career, raise children, make decisions changed?
I am not attached to my life situation any more. I have no goals. It doesn't matter if I succeed professionally, where I live, what I do each day. Every day is a blessing and magic happens - money arrives, food arrives, someone gives me a bicycle. Sometimes I start to worry about the future and forget what I have learned. And then I find this forum and realize that I don't need to worry. All is well. I am somewhat concerned about a business I started because I don't care about it any more and my clients want me to continue with it. I am looking for someone to take over. But then how will I support myself? Perhaps I will go sit on a bench. :)

-Are you in a conscious relationship with your partner?
I am using the relationship as my spiritual practice.

-Is there more purpose in your life now, a call to teaching or service, or do you find that life has little meaning and that frees you from taking any of it personally.
Each day has a purpose: to become more conscious, more present. Each moment as long as I am present has infinite meaning. And I try not to take other people's anger or rejection personally. Sometimes I succeed.

-Are you more fully engaged with life or more drawn to seeking solitude?
I am more drawn to solitude. I find more space in solitude and silence. When I am with others who don't seem to be conscious, I feel transparent. Except for people who drink a lot of alcohol or smoke - that's my next lesson because I still feel resistance to them.

In form, we are brought to awakening in different ways (suffering, seeking etc..). Similarly after a shift in perception, our lives no doubt unfold in different ways.

I’d love to hear your insights, experiences and even questions about living consciously. I find that the issue of conscious living is underrepresented in teachings and books and perhaps with good reason :wink: That is, maybe there is a good reason for not indulging in these kinds of discussions. If so, I'd love to hear why. Many thanks, rt

p.s. this is not about who is enlightened or awakened to what degree. It’s simply about how everyday life is lived more consciously.
"As soon as you honor the present moment, all unhappiness and struggle dissolve, and life begins to flow with joy and ease." Ekhart Tolle, The Power of Now
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