Do you ever notice yourself in the act of being judgmental or unkind, either to another or to yourself? When your “spiritual” self becomes conscious of this, what goes on inside? Do you look away? Do you tell yourself that being judgmental is indicative of a deep inner failing? Do you feel some change is in order — that you need to be more vigilant, try harder to to be more compassionate? [Read more…]
Hope is thought to be a good thing, a positive force. Its absence is associated with depression, pessimism, negativity. What would a life be without hope?
What a revelation: to discover the deep truth about hope, about its absence. As with so many discoveries in the spiritual life, hope is seen to be nothing like what was supposed – like what the larger culture teaches us. [Read more…]
Undo all the ideas in the head, or at least see them for what they are: mind-made, and so maybe not the same thing as reality. Rock your world. Witness what happens when you stop living in your head, in the tiny airless house where nothing at all exists except your ideas of things. Inside there, life itself is invisible, at a great distance. [Read more…]
Each moment – when rightly received, fully occupied – is an incredibly potent thing. When you’re fully attuned to what-is, spiritual fertility abounds. Savoring is able to blossom in the now, maybe the exploration of something going on inside (stillness, judgment, delight, discomfort). Strain in the body, a revelation of some sort. A feeling you don’t want to feel, only now you’ve sensed the resistance and . . . at last you’re able to relax into the feeling. There’s the dawning of a fresh awareness, a release, an insight that’s been awaiting a moment of stillness, of noticing. [Read more…]
So much seeking is misguided. Many get hopelessly lost in the impression that somebody else “has it” while they do not. Awakeness is made into something extraordinary – something outside the one longing for it. Yet the only difference between someone who’s steadily awake and one who’s not is this: the awake person has discovered what always was within, and has come to dwell there. For others, the discovery is yet to be made. If something life-altering occurs at awakening, it’s got to do with perspective only.
The impression is that “I” exist, that I am here – that each of us is a person, recognizable, ongoing. That life is a medium, like water or air, through which each person moves. That life is something that happens to you, or something you attempt to direct the course of, and so you (that person you seem to be) are affected in some way. [Read more…]
The holy of holies, missed. All one’s life, it’s missed. Never entered, embodied. Never even (maybe) sensed the presence of. [Read more…]
How up for grabs it all turns out to be: that enduring impression of a self, having substance and boundary, requiring vigilance, deserving of respect and maybe even that vaunted thing, self-esteem. [Read more…]
How naturally a person tends to equate accepting something with liking it. It’s easier to see this in the negation: If I dislike the thing that’s occurred, of course I reject it. It’s natural to rebel against any idea of accepting it.
It was like I’d been robbed. As if someone crept into my dark house in the night and made off with what had always been my dearest possession: my sense of who I was. But gently, without confrontation or uproar, like a cat burglar, or a pickpocket. No evidence of thievery: just the quiet but unmistakable space of the absence.