Tuesday, April 29, 2014
The pig was lying on the side of the road and decaying outside our window for over a week, because only a "sweeper" could touch the pig to move it. It is part of the caste system mentality and restrictions of task action in India. Nicely clarified by Gurudev. He understood my puzzled look, since I had offered to move it myself, but I didn't know where to move it. He lamented that it was a limiting construction in the culture.
The "point the finger at the woman as the problem" is in a lot of the religious and spiritual literature. It still tweaks me, so I asked why this is the case with even someone like Ramakrishna. "He was teaching for the times (150 plus years ago) and the culture (Indian.) " Of course when someone just goes to pure formlessness, all of these sticking points go away. My take away lesson is a gentle reminder of the imperfection of written spiritual teachings. One must consider the era, culture, audience, and more while reading.
I was listening to E. Tolle's tapes and he brought up the primitive mind as the root of violence, war, etc. I was reflecting on that was exactly what I was observing and experiencing while on my walks. When I asked Gurudev about the discrimination in the Ramakrishna books, he also brought up the "primitive mind" as the target level for many spiritual/religious books. The point is to try and awaken consciousness to this layer of primitive thinking. Once one gains some degree of consciousness, than the teachings can change in orientation and focus. Nice, a lot of the puzzle is making sense now.
The point for the next 30 days will be survival and inwardness. I have enjoyed visiting and eating with a few of the families from the ashram. Very fun to see the different houses, learn more about the families, and eat the amazing food.
Sunday, April 27, 2014
Walking with a man shield completely changes the plight of the woman walking in India. All of the stares, the gestures, the comments, the inappropriate touching, the.... all fade away when walking with a man. I have thought of renting a man shield, but I haven't found one that can keep up. I wasn't sure if the disturbances were highlighted by having white skin, but I am learning it is the plague of brown skinned women as well. Sigh!
What it must be like to be from the tribe of the hanging appendage? The drive to find a hole to put the hanging appendage appears to be an obsession for many--consciously or unconsciously. To hear the stories of holes within women, men, animals, children, and more creative devices are daunting. Should I have sympathy and pity for this consumed mind? Ramakrishna is always referencing lust and gold as the two insidious plagues of the external world. Shall I be grateful that I don't live with this preoccupation on my list, but only to be unfortunately on the receiving end?
I grew up with brothers, male friends, male teachers, male dance partners, etc. and they have been a joy. How nice to have this as my reference point as I have "walked and observed" a very different aspect of the tribe with the hanging appendage. I do look forward to having a break from this point of my lesson plan.
Walking by the bags full of dead animal parts has been one of the challenges as the temperatures rise. As the pieces of meat decompose and bloat, the white sacks are stained with a brownish serum seeping and turning the sacks brown. Sensitivity to smell has always been a challenge, so how fortunate to have these opportunities?
Humans appear to have a wide degree of tolerance for their own smell as one sits in the ashram with the rising temperatures. Standards of bathing, washed clothing, and so on have not been much in my radar before.
Saturday, April 26, 2014
|Nothing better on a hot day!|
|Love the ears!|
|Nature in the city|
|Remarkable neglect and the other three feet look similar...|
|Incredible filth--this is a water way!|
|Relief in the return to nature.|
Friday, April 25, 2014
It appears to be like feeding a giant furnace. No matter what, when, or how much are supplied there is always room for more. The container is without borders. One is knocked back by the intensity and voracious appetite when the doors are opened. Offerings of any size are consumed like a snack. The relationship to satisfying the insatiable is madness beyond anything comprehensible by the mind.
|Acceptance while waiting for owner to pray at the temple.|
Daily stumbling on how to proceed with a friendship that has changed directions during the past year. I have exhausted my list and thought I would ask Gurudev for ideas on what I am overlooking.
Three paths of relationships:
When in doubt stay parallel which translates to acceptance. Of course this means examining the ego for signs of merging or diverging unconsciously. Parallel is not easy, but it feels like a lovely approach for the spiritual heart. Until one knows eternal truth, one is subject to examining the ego and doing the best one can from one's particular point on the path. Pranam for the simple wisdom.
Ballroom dancing was a 20 year study of parallelness in motion. No pulling or pushing was the objective while two people with a shared center moved across the floor with varied tempos and movement patterns. The difference being both people were working towards the same end point. Parallel as a state of being is a new dance step to observe and work with.
|And more acceptance...|
|Not everyone would accept someone stepping up one's head like a staircase.|
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
|What is discovered while walking|
Monday, April 21, 2014
My inner state is joining with the outer state so my living state of self is becoming the continuous reminder of the Divine instead of just when meditating, reading, sitting at Gurudev's feet, visiting statues, tying things on my arm, putting marks on my forehead, drinking something, eating something, and so on, (not that I prescribed to all of these points, but I understand the relevancy.) As the ego is diminished/scaffolding scaled back, the "deeper" state from meditation is emerging as my true state. Fact check-check mark. Now, the madness I was experiencing as the boards were pried off the scaffolding is becoming an electric current of grace as I adjust. Fact check-check mark. Fascinating to see what triggers a spike in the new outer state as I walk--a woman sorting through a pile of garbage with 5 cows gently surrounding her and waiting for her to finish opening up sacks. Fascinating to experience what shows up in the inner state as I meditate or watch Gurudev converse with a visiting Saint.
How do I know that the ego isn't creating a story? "The truth will continue to be uncovered in the depth of the stillness, because we have an ego." Head nod on the Sue version of uncovering the path/state of being and a "keep going." Each person will experience this process and grow into it in his or her own way. Fact check-check mark. There was some mention of the outward perception continuing to change as well. I secretly keep expecting there to be a wide-eyed look of what are you thinking and experiencing when I do the fact checks, but so far so "good."
It is the first time I went to do pranam and it felt like it came from the formless to the formless. The exquisite nature of what shows up is breathtaking. Healthy intoxication. New possibilities in awareness at every turn.
Eating lunch at the ashram everyday is converting me into an Indian food addict. The variety of flavors is unbelievable. No chance of finding Indian food like this at home.
Sunday, April 20, 2014
My neck was energetically reconfigured this week along with other streams of energy. Fascinating to experience the shift in the energetic channel of the back and the extension into the base of the skull. What are the little fairies continuing to do, but must be the fabrication of Diviner Wear?
Looking in the mirror, same body, but such a different perception. Feel like a glow worm, but it isn't apparent exteriorly. I had no idea what fun all of this would be. The years of minute detail exteriorly and interiorly (physically) for dance and riding have made for an interesting backdrop for pure energetic sensing.
|Only the focus is different|
Friday, April 18, 2014
|Following the Blood Moon|
Thursday, April 17, 2014
|It is the surface of the sea that makes waves and roaring breakers; the depth is silent.|
Bowl of Saki, April 17, by Hazrat Inayat Khan
|Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan:|
The bubbles are to be found on the surface of the sea. The depth of the sea is free from bubbles. The commotion is to be seen on the surface, the depth of the sea is still. The mind is the commotion of that something that is within us, that something which we call heart. The happiness, knowledge, pleasure and love that is stored in our innermost being is in our profound depth. Changing emotions and passions, dreams, ever-rising thoughts and imaginations, all belong to the surface, as the bubbles belong to the surface of the sea.
To attain peace, what one has to do is to seek that rhythm which is in the depth of our being. It is just like the sea: the surface of the sea is ever moving; the depth of the sea is still. And so it is with our life. If our life is thrown into the sea of activity, it is on the surface. We still live in the profound depths, in that peace. But the thing is to become conscious of that peace which can be found within ourselves. It is this which can bring us the answer to all our problems. If not, when we want to solve one problem, there is another difficult problem coming. There is no end to our problems. There is no end to the difficulties of the outer life. And if we get excited over them, we shall never be able to solve them. Some think, 'We might wait. Perhaps the conditions will become better. We shall see then what to do.' But when will the conditions become better? They will become still worse! Whether the conditions become better or worse, the first thing is to seek the kingdom of God within ourselves, in which there is our peace. As soon as we have found that, we have found our support, we have found our self. And in spite of all the activity and movement on the surface, we shall be able to keep that peace undisturbed if only we hold it fast by becoming conscious of it.
Spiritual knowledge is nothing but this: that there is a constant longing in the heart of man to have something of its origin, to experience something of its original state, the state of peace and joy which has been disturbed, and yet is sought after throughout its whole life, and never can cease to be sought after until the real source has at length been realized. What was it in the wilderness that gave peace and joy? What was it that came to us in the forest, the solitude? In either case it was nothing else but the depth of our own life, which is silent like the depths of the great sea, so silent and still. It is the surface of the sea that makes waves and roaring breakers; the depth is silent. So the depth of our own being is silent also.
And this all-pervading, unbroken, inseparable, unlimited, ever-present, omnipotent silence unites with our silence like the meeting of flames. Something goes out from the depths of our being to receive something from there, which comes to meet us; our eyes cannot see and our ears cannot hear and our mind cannot perceive because it is beyond mind, thought, and comprehension. It is the meeting of the soul and the Spirit.
Tuesday, April 15, 2014
|Ashram Lotus. First to burst open today|
"The stillness in meditation supports the discovery of the Absolute Truth." Fact check. So much is making sense now. Taking steps to orient my life in the West more in the support and attempt to walk on the ever growing bridge between the two "worlds." Fascinating the concretization of something so abstract with reading and Gurudev's teachings. Part of the test will be how much the western world and living requirements pulls me from this new point of focus from the internal matrix.
My bridge in meditation has needed some help. I have noticed when moving from the exterior to the interior state that it isn't always a smooth transition, since I focus on the formless. Sort of like jumping from the dock into a boat and hoping the gap is gauged well. I was wrestling with this point to see if I could find a better way when the screen between my eyes lit up and completely remedied the orientation and transition. Wow! So simple, but so clear. It was even clarified in my reading afterwards with Ramakrishna telling a disciple that if one meditates on the formless, than the third eye should be used for the internal focus. So much support! Jai Guru!
|While walking, I found a small valley of these trees.|
(short video of fireworks)
Saturday, April 12, 2014
|Internal or external fireworks? (View from the front porch.)|
|Temperatures gently climbing and the water buffalo have the right idea.|
|Part of the bird sanctuary|
Tuesday, April 8, 2014
As Navratra is drawing to a close, I am in absolute awe of the work ethic and endurance of all the volunteers, workers, priests, and Gurudev. Intense production and it all runs so smoothly and with such a high degree of thoughtfulness. Wow!
In today's reading. Ramakrishna, "What can a man understand of God's activities? The facets of God's creation are infinite. I do not try to understand God's actions at all. I have heard that everything is possible in God's creation, and I always bear that in mind. Therefore I do not give a thought to the world, but meditate on God alone."
Marker in place. Path blazing words to live by. It has been a big help mentally to think of God as spirit and not the religious only concept I was introduced to at an early age.
A do-over showed up in the middle of the night. A chance to recognize the point of separation which leads to disturbances from within. Watching the same scene of two lines and Gurudev, but only observing the whole scene and not focusing on Gurudev as the anchor. There was texture in the room instead of a mute button, but the inner stillness stayed in place. I could observe and be fascinated by seeing human, cultural, sexual, religious, points of separation emerging. Not caught in it, but watching the wellspring of living. All of the debriding to get to this simple point while awake. Bliss wasn't required, but spiritual intoxication was present in the awareness--no surprise given the number of overlays present.