Tag Archives: enlightenment

Going Through the Motions

 

“Enlightenment cannot be according to any system. It has to resolve and clarify your own situation. The realization must satisfy and fulfill your heart, not the standards of some system. The liberation must be of you, you personally…The quest does not bring about improvement or perfection. It brings about a maturity, a humanity, and a wisdom.”
— A.H. Almaas.

 

We can follow the rules of any given spiritual school and be initiated at every level yet come out of it almost unchanged. I have met a few people where this was the case. Oh they had the necessary answers to satisfy the requirements that they derived either intellectually or intuitively yet after going through the motions, the energy released was not the energy that they personally needed to bring them to the next level. Castaneda’s Don Juan would say the path wasn’t one with heart for them. From my own experience I would say that they hadn’t found a way to plug in deeply enough. Anything if we are open and ready for it can bring a peak experience. If we are not ready tho any experience will be merely that no matter how much we may wish it were something else.
Blessings, G

 

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Night Wolf SpiritNight Wolf Spirit by G A Rosenberg

Awakening AuroraAwakening Aurora by G A Rosenberg

 

Enlightened-Who?

 

“It is the task of the enlightened not only to ascend to learning and to see the good but to be willing to descend again to those prisoners and to share their troubles and their honors, whether they are worth having or not. And this they must do, even with the prospect of death.”
― Plato, The Allegory of the Cave

 

What is enlightenment? Is it a place we reach and stay at? Is it a never-ending journey on which we occasionally receive glimpses during peak experiences that keep us moving along carrying water and chopping wood? Is there a point of absolute enlightenment or is it relative. I can definitely say that each day I understand things more clearly than I have before. I can also definitely say that each day I find more confusion and it is in this interplay of light and darkness that I find the most growth. I have also yet to meet anyone that I could neither learn from nor teach even if some of the lessons were less than pleasant ones. As far as I can tell that’s why we’re all here with each other.I don’t know if I’ll ever reach a point at which I’ve made it and can say “i am enlightened.” Yet looking at those who do say it that is possibly a good thing. At least I know I’ll have fun on the way.
Blessings, G

 

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Angel Over Hidden Water (Crocell)Angel Over Hidden Water (Crocell) by G A Rosenberg

 

Ringmaster of the Unearth CircusRingmaster of the Unearth Circus by G A Rosenberg

 

Road Hash- Art, Photograph and Memory

 

“The road to enlightenment is long and difficult, and you should try not to forget snacks and magazines.”
― Anne Lamott

 

Back in the meditative mountains. Thoughts of surrendering the parts of myself I have no control over (onto Nuit) to the universe and just getting on with it all. That too may have to be surrendered. Until then I have the beauty of some of the most amazing scenery and my family and yes lots of good books, snacks and magazines. I have no end of things to be grateful for both small and large and gratitude I have. Still I asked for this trip to be an internal one as well as external and it has been. I have been exploring my vulnerability this week and feeling it and that has been a good thing.
When it comes to any kind of development baby steps are not only ok, they may be essential.
We are already there and miles to go before I sleep are both true and the paradox is as beautiful as any mountain pass.
Blessings, G

 

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Art:

 

Abstract CAbstract C by G A Rosenberg

 

Photograph:

 

Stormy Afternoon in Canadian RockiesStormy Afternoon in Canadian Rockies

 

Memory:

 

The Stress of holding on too tightThe Burden of Holding On to Tight by G A Rosenberg

 

No Surrender

“What is the significance of the statement ‘No one can get enlightenment’? This is the very root of the teaching. It means that it’s stupid for any so-called master to ask anyone to do anything to achieve or get enlightenment. The core of this simple statement means, according to my concept, that enlightenment is the annihilation of the “one” who “wants” enlightenment. If there is enlightenment – which can only happen because it is the will of God – then it means the “one” who had earlier wanted enlightenment has been annihilated. So no “one” can achieve enlightenment and therefore no “one” can enjoy enlightenment.”
“The joke is even the surrendering is not in your control. Why? Because so long as there is an individual who says “I surrender” there is a surrenderer, an individual ego… What I’m saying is that even the surrendering is not in [your] hands.”
–Ramesh Balsekar

 

Is true surrender then surrender of the universe to itself? It may be something akin to Odin sacrificing himself to himself on the world tree to gain understanding. I love the concepts inherent in the Advaita (Non-Duality) school of Hinduism. I have found that contemplating all of reality as one perfect whole has lifted veils for me. Too often when we talk, words get in the way of our understanding so taking it outside of words helps.
Blessings, G

 

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Presence 2Fractal Presence by G A Rosenberg

 

Forces From the CentreForces from the Centre by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day – October 3 2012

“Why is it that the word ‘an­oth­er’ is the crulest word in the lan­guage, Pop?”

“How d’ya mean?”

“Well, when he’s alone with him­self a man may get re­al hon­est and ac­knowl­edge—and ac­cept—that he is a fool. But no­body wants to be ‘just’ an­oth­er fool. ‘An­oth­er cou­ple of dumb At­lases,’ he called us, and of all the things he said that hurt the most.”

“Here now—easy! Here, use this here bar rag. Be right back.”

While Fred­dy wiped his eyes, the old man quick­ly filled a tray of or­ders for the wait­er. By the time he re­turned Fred­dy was un­der con­trol and had be­gun re­pair­ing his make­up with a hand mirror.

“See here,” Pop said, “if you’re hip deep in used food, well, maybe you could climb out. But if you see a whole oth­er bunch of peo­ple hip deep too, then the chances of you be­com­ing the rare one to climb out seem to go down dras­tic. But you see, that’s a kind of op­ti­cal il­lu­sion. All those oth­ers don’t af­fect your odds atall. What mat­ters is how bad you want to get up out of the shit, and what pur­chase you can find for your feet.”

— Spider Robinson

 

I can’t see to escape it. I enjoy talking and listening to people and the one thing that keeps coming up for me is that nobody gets through life unscathed. Some people had horrible traumatic childhoods with history of various kinds of abuses, physical, sexual or what not. If not in their childhoods then in their teenage years, if not then as they hit adulthood. I get it I do. However I see more and more evidence of a phenomenon that disturbs me. More and more people seem to fall into the role of victim, willingly imprisoning themselves in their past. We get a lot of validation for doing this. The media is filled with shows where people are encouraged to drag up every ounce of pain they ever felt and display it for others to see. Again, in no way do I belittle what anyone has gone through. However part of me wonders especially when I look at my own past. Do I let myself become disempowered by constantly displaying my wounds and using them as an excuse for abdicating responsibility or do I try to face them and move past it?

I do know people who have done it. Some people get crushed by the pain of their past and others integrate it and use it to become magnificent. I know a woman who was born with cerebral palsy who despite only having movement in one hand and her mouth has become an incredible artist who sets goals for herself and achieves them more often than anyone I know. I’ve seen people who hurt who use their pain to understand others, sometimes even the ones who caused the pain, faced it and have become, what one friend of mine would call Buddhas. I know victims of rape and incest who have become councillors teaching others how to empower themselves.

Looking at both sides and again not belittling anyone’s past, I wonder what can be achieved by not looking at my past as a curse or a blessing but seeing it as a challenge, something that I can move beyond if I but have the determination to do so. That way to me lies enlightenment. So I leave it to those of you who’s comments I treasure. What has helped you move beyond your past?

Blessings, G

 

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Tiger Warp by G A Rosenberg

 

Electric Mandala by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day — September 6 2012

“I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.”
— T S Eliot

Tonight I found a lesson in breaking the fourth wall. I was talking to some friends in one FB group or another while listening to music and playing with art. One friend was talking about his enlightenment in a manner that some do as if they have moved beyond earthly thoughts and patterns and was somehow above it all. This tends to irk some and inspire others. I tend to feel a kind of bemusement at it. I feel that even in hard times when the path feels its hardest, I would still much rather feel like I have a far way to go than that I have arrived at a stopping point. What would be the purpose and where the fun in that? Which basically was the question I asked my friend. What do you do for fun? There was a long pause and then he started talking about his love of photography and we talked about capturing the moment that doesn’t come again and the conversation became to me a lot more interesting.

I realized that I had gotten my friend to break the fourth wall. In stage, television and movies where sets are three walls the two sides and back, the fourth wall is that invisible wall which separates the actors and the characters they play from the audience. The audience watches its window into the world of the play and sustains the belief that these are not actors playing characters but events unfolding. Likewise, the actors and the characters usually pretend that the audience is a non existent one. However, in some plays the actor or the character he plays breaks the fourth wall and for a moment breaks character and speaks directly to the audience. Groucho did it in a few of the Marx Brothers movies, George Burns did it all the time in his show. For just a moment, my friend had broken the fourth wall, dropped the character of enlightened master and spoke as an excited human. At that moment, he became so much easier to relate to.

It got me thinking. Who is behind our fourth wall? Does the universe (God) consciously watch and feel its parts acting out its myriad dramas? How about the part of our unconscious that Ken Wilber calls the witness, that part below the surface that dispassionately watches all the events of our life. The more we identify with our witness and the less with all the drama, the farther we have come. We connect the most with the universe when we pray and the most with the witness when we meditate. In this way prayer and meditation would be the two methods by which we break down the fourth wall and come down from the state.
Blessings, G

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Paths to and From the Centre by G A Rosenberg

 

Red Gray Waking Spiral by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day – April 15 2012

“If Spirit has any meaning at all, then it must be eternal, or without beginning or end. If Spirit had a beginning in time, then it would be strictly temporal, it would not be timeless and eternal. And this means, as regards your own awareness, that you cannot become enlightened. You cannot attain enlightenment. If you could attain enlightenment, then that state would have a beginning in time, and so it would not be true enlightenment.
Rather, Spirit, and enlightement, has to be something that you are fully aware of right now. Something you are already looking at right now… We are all already looking directly at Spirit, we just don’t recognize it. We have all the necessary cognition, but not the recognition. ”
— Ken Wilber

What is the recognition that Dr. WIlber is talking about? It doesn’t seem to me that it can be reached through cognition or any form of conscious endeavour but rather by letting go of consciousness altogether :

“It was a marvelous morning and you could have walked on endlessly, never feeling the steep hills. There was a perfume in the air, clear and strong. There was no one on that path, coming down or going up. You were alone with those dark pines and the rushing waters. The sky was that astonishing blue that only the mountains have. You looked at it through leaves and the straight pines. There was no one to talk to and there was no chattering of the mind. A magpie, white and black, flew by, disappearing into the woods. The path led away from the noisy stream and the silence was absolute. It wasn’t the silence after the noise; it wasn’t the silence that comes with the setting of the sun, nor that silence when the mind dies down. It wasn’t the silence of museums and churches but something totally unrelated to time and space. It wasn’t the silence that mind makes for itself. The sun was hot and the shadows were pleasant.

He only discovered recently that there was not a single thought during these long walks, in the crowded streets or on the solitary paths. Ever since he was a boy it had been like that, no thought entered his mind. He was watching and listening and nothing else. Thought with its associations never arose. There was no image-making. One day he was suddenly aware how extraordinary it was; he attempted often to think but no thought would come. On these walks, with people or without them, any movement of thought was absent. This is to be alone.”
– J Krishnamurthi.

In that silence, lies that recognition that Ken Wilber talks about. The awareness that lies beyond cognition.
Blessings, G

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Thoughts in Motion by G A Rosenberg

How is your enlightenment going? :)

Today, I was watching the latest video from rawlucas and early on in it he asked his viewing public, “How is your enlightenment going?” Hmmm. Thanks for asking, Lucas. Overall it goes well Seems the less I worry about how fast I proceed or where It seems to be going or whether it seems to be going, the better it progresses. So it goes 🙂 I’d imagine that you could look at anyone’s life and describe it as their path to enlightenment. Everything in continual process, life  existing in motion as a verb.

But still I like the fact that the question made me look at myself in this space and time and ask, “Well what have I learned lately?” or even “What do I seem to be working on?” So without further adieu, some of my current curriculum, things I’ve either come to realize lately or things I try to practice.

  1. Feeling grateful for the good things in life rocks. Feeling grateful for the lessons that I might not enjoy but need to go through would probably be a good idea too. Gratitude shows appreciation and appreciation feels good. I find so much to appreciate, the sun on my face, grass under my feet, Aaron’s warmth, Zev’s wit and intelligence, our generally good health, amusing pet’s, watching Zev, Amanda, our friends and Aaron and myself constantly find new ways to grow, flowers, waves, mountains, Moments when I just feel good (especially when it involves connection to either another being or to a place.
  2. There is a First Nation’s blessing “Walk in Beauty”. Recently I’ve come to understand that that doesn’t mean to always walk in beautiful places as much as having the awareness of the beauty that exists everywhere. In that way, you carry the beauty with you wherever you walk.  Again, it comes down to making choices. Sometimes choosing moment by moment and sometimes deciding to be a person who has that level of appreciation as often as possible, not berating myself when I don’t do that as much as gently pull myself back into it.
  3. See with the eyes of the heart, seeing connection with other’s , finding ways to identify with rather than separate from those around me. Again, seeing this as who I want to be and working at it, catching myself and continuing further.
  4. Learning how much, my less-than-positive reactions towards people is my own stuff and how much of it seems to come from guilt and either expecting too much from others or too much from myself.
  5. “What you focus on thrives.”, OK other peoples’ words but true. It makes me wonder how so many people focus on the negative so often and then wonder why they feel so unhappy and so unsatisfied.
  6. Diet seems to play a key factor in my physicality. My physicality seems to play a key factor in my emotions and attitudes.
  7. Love rules. Always. When I take time out to feel love for the people around me and as importantly allow love from them (this also goes, in general , with feeling love for and from the universe, as spacey as it may sound, it feels awesome!!!) I feel more entered and ever so much happier.
  8. Always find the funny. Laugh.
  9. We all face times when our moods, attitudes, etc don’t feel optimal. When that happened, I used to seek a cause for this, something to attack and I identified way too much with the mood. I have found a big difference in seeing it as emotional weather, a storm going on that will pass, I don’t need to be that mood or act on it, just watch it and let it past. A bit like the fear litany in the Dune books by Frank Herbert.
  10. Meditating for at least 10 minutes a day, finding that quiet space and time, can make a huge difference in my life and my perspective.

Kind of amazing, all of those seem to boil down to two words, connection and perspective. When I choose (and it usually seems to come down to choice, tho sometimes a hard-won decision) to be happy, be aware of love and beauty and feel connected and grateful, the light shines through me.