Monday, October 31, 2011

I Have Everything, But There Is Nothing.

I have everything, but there is nothing.

Beauty found on walks

The More I Learn, the Less I Know

The more I learn, the less I know.

Flowers placed at the feet of Gurudev

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Spiritual Materialism

Objects to buy
Finally understanding (mentally) why seeking the formless will look like I have gone mad to most at home and why so few understand the path (no going back now, damn.)  The Indians understand the concept even if their actions are mostly anchored in spiritual materialism. Most religions don't really go into the details of the true beyond, so I have been missing chapters in the human outline until now, (probably not ready to read those chapters.)  No idea if my number is coming up for more directly knowing an Impersonal God, but not stopping yet even if at times I am yelling obscenities while walking in the hills.  I can also start to wrap my brain around why most Indians will have a cell phone before proper sanitation--the ever widening gap of materialism and sensibility. As a friend pointed out, it looks like they are jumping over a few steps in the basics of human management.  In the picture behind what we think is reality, it doesn't really matter.  Only more conditions for herding people ultimately towards consciousness.

We start our lives as teachers, and it is very hard for us to learn to become pupils. There are many whose only difficulty in life is that they are teachers already. What we have to learn is pupilship. There is but one Teacher, God Himself.
                        Bowl of Saki, October 30, by Hazrat Inayat Khan
Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:
In order to know the truth or to know God earthly qualifications and earthly wisdom or learning are not necessary. What one has to learn is how to become a pupil. We often start our lives as teachers, and then it is hard to become a pupil. From childhood on we start to teach our parents. There are seldom souls who have more inclination for pupilship than for teaching, and there are many whose only difficulty in life is that they are teachers already. Man thinks that perhaps his reading or study of different religions and doctrines has qualified him and made him capable to understand the truth and to have the knowledge of God, but he forgets that there is only one teacher, and that is God Himself. We all are pupils, and what we can do in life is to qualify ourselves to become true pupils.   from

It should be remembered that all the great teachers of humanity, such as Jesus Christ, Buddha, Muhammad and Zarathushtra, have been great pupils; they have learned from the innocent child, they have learned from everyone, from every person that came near them. They have learned from every situation and every condition of the world. They have understood and they have learned. It is the desire to learn continually that makes one a teacher, and not the desire to become a teacher. As soon as a person thinks, 'I am something of a teacher,' he has lost ground. For there is only one teacher: God alone is the Teacher, and all others are His pupils. We all learn from life what life teaches us. When a soul begins to think that he has learned all he had to learn and that now he is a teacher, he is very much mistaken. The greatest teachers of humanity have learned from humanity more than they have taught.

Halloween October 31st

Also calledAll Hallows’ Eve
All Saints’ Eve
Observed byAround the world
DateOctober 31
ObservancesCostume parties, trick-or-treating, carving pumpkins, ghost tours, haunted attractions, bonfires, divination, apple bobbing, fireworks displays
Related toSamhainAll Saints’ Day(cfvigils)

Halloween carved pumpkins

Costumes for children....

Costumes for adults....

Saturday, October 29, 2011


(photo from Wikipedia)
Checked on why they are considered such a spiritual center.  One of the oldest areas  for spiritual beings to gather, contemplate life, and download writings like the Vedas.  As a result, the mountains have been permeated with mystical vibrations for a very long time.  Modern life is starting to corrupt the purity, but it does still exist.  Also, conformation that spiritual transformation can happen anywhere and at any time. (Thank you Gurudev!)

The Himalayas, which are often called "The Roof of the World", contain the greatest area of glaciers and permafrost outside of the poles. Ten of Asia’s largest rivers flow from here, and more than a billion people’s livelihoods depend on them. To complicate matters, temperatures are rising more rapidly here than the global average. In Nepal, the temperature has risen 0.6 degree C over the last decade, whereas the global warming has been around 0.7 degree C over the last hundred years. (Wikipedia)

(Photo from Wikipedia)

Friday, October 28, 2011


Lily pond under reconstruction so finding other flower models--gift to Gurudev from a disciple

I found myself a bit crabby after walking down the street to the ashram and getting honked at twice in such a short distance. Isn't it possible to ever walk anywhere in India without getting honked at or hear honking?  I wasn't even walking in the road, but they want to make sure you know that they are coming.  Yes, it is better than getting hit....  Obviously the ego was activated in some way.  I had already had the water shut off three times while I was taking a shower, I ruined my coffee milk by adding the coffee at a different time so curdled the milk, and had a new squeak start on my exercise bike.  None of them life threatening, but the ego was awake.  I have already lowered my expectations for cleanliness, quiet, and fresh air to the lowest standard that I have ever had in this lifetime, so now what?  Does this mean eliminating any and all expectations?  Can one live without any expectations? Will there be joy in life?  Seeing a thread of attachment.

After sitting in the ashram for a bit and regaining tranquil composure, I started to wonder if it was actually possible to have this same sense of inner peace in the city.  I have had extended moments, but my ego wanted to know if it was really worth the work.  Obviously, I needed to make another circle around to examine expectations.  Narrowing my questions down to one,  I asked Gurudev if it was possible.  Of course, I was hoping he would say no, but I doubted that would be the response.  Yes calmly came from this unblinking being.  I had already organized my plan of attack if the answer was yes. so I ran it by him to clarify my homework.

Expectation + Expectation not met = pain/separation

No Expectation = no pain from Expectation not being met

*Clarify action:  Mind is a chalkboard, keep wiping off ANY thought of design/expectation

*I asked if people living in the slums have a lower expectation, so less pain.  In principle yes except for the addition of materialism, desire, etc. getting loaded into their environment.  Gurudev talked about growing up in a village that didn't have clocks, cars, phones, etc.  He said it was so pure and so beautiful.  The only periodic twinge was for food.  I didn't go onto ask about respect for women,  environment, and animals.  The thought of the serene village where he cooked food out on a boat in a river was a pleasant place to leave it.  Besides, the homework around keeping my mental chalkboard clear was plenty.

 I am not trying to change India, I am only trying to find a way to be in it (the world/hospital) without pain.   I know where my pain spots are at home, but I didn't have my new tool kit clear enough. He also confirmed that as a foreigner, growing up in abundance, materialism, high standard of living, etc. the challenge to eliminate expectations/mental designs is not easy.  Possible, but not often easy.  The mind has to be open/willing.  (Although, it could be easy--just let go.  People give up cigarettes cold turkey, so why not mental expectations? Making a mountain into a molehill! Gurudev Rocks!)

Thursday, October 27, 2011

When Love pours with tears, compassion is at the root.

Now that the dream state and the wake state are often a blur, I am not going to categorize the state I was in while experienced this vision.  I was standing alone, but feeling enveloped by a lovely presence that didn't require anything from me and yet supported/nurtured who I am.  I was only standing alone-not being alone.  Next, humanity came and wrapped itself around me and created a physical presence that was also lovely but limited by form.  Even with the addition of humanity, I smiled and felt the weightless comfort of the spacious presence that permeated us both.

Part of a writing by Bhavani that is helping me to understand pain and compassion (June 9th, 2007):

When Love pours with tears, compassion is at the root.
Bliss is not an aspect of compassion but Grace is.
Those with the quality of a compassionate nature may find themselves experiencing cessation of "bliss" at times--this is to assist them in bringing forth compassion rather than love.

Only the truly awakened can bear the sense of separation and detachment, longing and loss, and still channel compassion to others even while experiencing the state of separation and, in fact, while using the grief of that state to propel the "movement of love tempered by experience" that is Compassion.

This particular  "ray" or vibration is not woven into the tapestry of an incarnating soul without great reflection beforehand.  And it is therefore most often taken into the vessel of the human form that most resembles the Creator, that which holds both life and death in its "body"--the feminine.

Compassion reveals the imprint of experience on the soul.

You can feel and express love without having any experience (for example, a baby can love), but you cannot feel and express compassion without experience.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

One Amazing Store Front


Diwali Glamour Buildings

Floating Palace

Diwali Continued

Not sure of the significance of these plants that looked like cornstalks, (I since found out that they are sugar cane), but they were everywhere--sticking out of cars, off the back of scooters/bikes, people walking with them in hand...


Sidewalk Art with candles
Diwali (also spelled Devali in certain regions) or Deepavali[note 1], popularly known as the "festival of lights"
From what I gather it is like Christmas in the US.  Everyone waits until now to buy, buy, buy--new cars, new furniture, new clothes, paint the house--all in the name of the Goddess of Wealth.  Fireworks at night, candle lighting everywhere, decorated streets, lights on the buildings, firecrackers--another big Indian party.

In the Pink City
Pink City
Mountains of prashad (and firecrackers)
Pink City

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My Path to Compassion

The thread started with a question around accepting praise, self worth, rejection, and love.  How can one offer compassion/love without having love for one's self.  Not getting the cart before the horse.  Where did the lack of love for self come from.  It wasn't in the requirement manual for raising a human.  It was learned.  In my case, it was from mirroring the lack in a parent, trying desperately to please, and never reaching the love bar. Nothing was ever good enough were the unspoken words.  Never giving up reaching, but always punished in some emotional way.  (Thank you Bhavani for help with uncovering that thread--rope I should say!) I have gratitude for the will it instilled.  Striving for excellence. Looking for the truth.  Now to let go of those ego beliefs and merge into the greater being of the Divine.  Taking the leap of faith to reach again.  I have verbalized doubts and questions around if this spacious source can say no at the entry gate.  Such a deep inner longing to be enfolded by freedom.

In Training for Compassion?

Someone brought it to my attention that compassion is linked to pain.  It felt like a pinhole offered in a balloon of despair.  There was light offered into the smallest crack.  Her writings on the topic were so heartfelt, profound, timely, magical, transformative, and ethereal.  There could be a reason for brewing in this soup of despair and pain.  Another blade of grass to grasp on the the climb out of inner hell?

Compassion is a virtue — one in which the emotional capacities of empathy and sympathy (for the suffering of others) are regarded as a part of love itself, and a cornerstone of greater social interconnection and humanism — foundational to the highest principles in philosophy, society, and personhood.

Ranked a great virtue in numerous philosophies, compassion is considered in all the major religious traditions as among the greatest of virtues. 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Is Suffering Beneficial?

Where to look for me if I don't show up
Thought I would try a new approach while continuing to hatchet through my attachments.  Meditate in the ashram for a few hours and then go for a walk--enter the walk in a more open state than from my room.  I did find a cool new place to go walking up in the hills--clean, fresh, and quiet.  Only one hour by foot to get there.  Walking through the matrix of human chaos was more challenging after leaving from the ashram.  It sort of had the reverse effect I had hoped for, so I was sorting through how much pain does one need to keep diving through as part of the process.  Found this in today's Bowl of Saki.  Something to consider and to keep letting go of my mental illusion of reality. (I have to admit that looking at the pictures sent to Gurudev of beautiful Sonoma/Shasta County created a strong ripple through me.  Sigh...)

Question: Is suffering beneficial?
Answer: Suffering is always a blessing. If it is for higher ideas, for God, for an ideal, it takes a person at once to the highest heaven. If it is for lower ideas, for the ego, for pride, for possessions, it takes a person to the lowest depth of hell. But there, after much suffering, after a long, long time, he loses these ideas and is purified. That is why the Christian religion shows the symbol of the cross, of suffering. How high our ideal may be, how low our ideal may be, in the end each pain has its prize.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Albert Einstein

Someone happen to send this after I saw him on Gurudev's iPhone.  

Upgrade to Insanity Walk

Both Sharing Survival Out of the Same Pile of Garbage
Appreciating more and more exploring insanity in India.  I will have to rename my incinerator walk the insanity walk.  First I see someone hand watering their camel at a road side trough, 2) I see the naked man being hand fed by someone (good news), 3) a young girl in her brand new outfit taking a bathroom break next to the entrance to a social function, 4) now that the rains are over the smells are coming back in full force (they almost knock you to your knees), 5) an elephant taking a family on board, 6) almost getting hit by a car (I keep forgetting that pedestrians don't have the right of way), 6) two men who look dead on the side of the street, but no one is taking notice so I must be wrong (turns out they are probably drunk), and the list continues.  All becoming normal sights.  Humans in varying stages of insanity.  Me included.  Animals sharing in the insanity, but not by choice.

The walking is awesome for sorting through my insanity realizations:  1) the progression of religion to mysticism makes sense for consciousness awakening in humans (although some are born in the depth of mysticism), 2) recognizing the real change has to be the energetic realignment for consciousness to truly manifest, 3) doing goodness is a step, but changing the inner being is the truth of the action, 4) observing the raw layers of humanity along with the "civilized" help to understand and accept the diversity, 5) seeing the randomness helps me let go of any notion of correct order (challenging the places of attachment/judgement), 6) energy transmissions helping to rewire the physical condition while  uncovering Divine Nature, 7) the mind is the veil, and this list goes on too.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pain: Local or Global

Kavita-Phoenix Rising
(picture copyrighted by Communities-Rising)
While I have been sitting with the path to this point, I was reflecting on my reference to pain and realizing that when I dip back into that place--it is more of a global pain.  It is not my own pain, but it is easy for my emotions to get involved.  How could they not?  As I sift through the layers of my own unconsciousness, I continue to read and stay updated on events in the world and the process of global consciousness waking up.

Besides investigating the truth of the spiritual world,  a story about a young girl named Kavita inspired my initial visit to India.  Originally, I was going to meet Gurudev, hang out with the group, and then go to Chennai to see what I could offer to help with the nonprofit organization Communities Rising  A very good friend from home has a cousin who developed the program and continues to support/grow her efforts with a developing community.  They graciously made space for me last minute when I knew my time in South Africa was growing to a close and I still had 6 weeks available for my 3 month leave of absence from California.  I learned about the program through the story of a remarkably brave and driven young woman, Kavita

There are more atrocities to the story, but this gives you insight into her will to survive and path to give back.  A true phoenix rising from the fire.  I would still like to meet Kavita, but my path changed direction again when I asked if I could stay longer at the feet of Gurudev.  There was an opening to answer some very deep questions about the path back to the Divine.  What is the bigger picture?  At some point, do these numerous and heart wrenching examples of localized pain make sense?

 Ugandan woman recalls harrowing tale of captivity -*

 Women rescue Cambodian sex slaves*

Remember by Omkara
This life is... This life is... This life is a dream. This life is a dream.
It'll be over in the blink of an eye. Remember who you are.
Remember what you are. Whose life is this? Whose hands are these?
Whose voice is this? What am I? This life is just a dream.
It will be over in the blink of an eye. Remember who you are.
Remember what you are. Remember who you are.
Om Gan Ganapataye Namaha. This life is beautiful. This life is horrible.
This life is wonderful. And this life is just a dream... A dream made of love.
 Remember who you are. Remember what you are. Remember who you are. Remember... You are before.
Before these questions. Before an answer. Remember... You are before.
Before everything...

Thank you Hava for sharing the music link and poem.

Astral Presence

The list is getting easier and easier.  No answers, so I can stop looking for them.  It appears there is no way into the spiritual enlightenment club unless it is your time, so that item can come off the list too, (today's homework download.)  What is left?  Ego management, hollowness, no attachments. staying out of the future (most of the time), and being.  Back to living, but with a new set of awareness tools.

Hanging out with the Divine Genealogy while Gurudev is away.  Got a kick out of his sign.  Do you think people would talk loudly and act differently if the librarian stepped out of the library?  Human nature it appears.

Astral Gurudev
With Gurudev away it is more check in time, since I don't plan on living in India forever and I don't think he is moving to the US. It is a chance to see what is going on without his immense shakti presence even though the ashram is loaded. Having the meditation experience of sitting with him and other Masters, getting a glimmer of true nature, and sensing the finer energy field of the Divine feels like all of the work is permeating and reorganizing my structure.  They feel like they are more a part of me than an exterior experience.