Member: Steppingfeet Location: Louisville, KY Gender: Male Interests: Spiritual evolution, books, meditation, nakedness, hiking, peanut butter, good music, good people, running, working out, Earth (the planet), hard work, no work, accomplishing something, helping & learning from others, staring in wonder at nature, friends & family, emotion, teeth brushing, NPR, clean sheets, trail mix, mountains, oceans, rivers, forests, electric scissors.
I am he who repeats the name of the nameless over and over in my thoughts, in my mantras, in my actions; ceaselessly I am he who prays to see and to know the face of the faceless. Also, I am he who loves his pillow at the end of a long day. O pillow, pillow, wherefore art thou pillow?
Published by Bring4th_GLB on January 16, 2009 8:13pm. Category: General
I recently finished another book about Gandhi, this one an anthology of his writings. I swear I love this man, I love what he stood for and what he so steadfastly attempted to embody. I loved his lifetime model for turning theory into practice, the abstract into the concrete. Rare has so pure a life been lived. Walking the walk, an entire nation of people loved him as their own father. Though we have all the guidance we need within, I wish I knew one such as him to turn to for wisdom when it was needed.
I learned in the intro to the anthology that, to understand Gandhi you must see him as a mystic, ever desiring to know for himself the unitary knowledge of eternal reality, ever desiring to sacrifice all that was not truth within himself upon the altar of that seeking, ever seeking greater humility and love towards his fellow beings, ever attempting to transcend all cultural, religious, and societal distortions to abide in that one mysterious truth to which we are all heir.
At some point in his life he picked up the practice of ramanama. Basically, it is the repetition of the Creator's name - aloud at times but more so within the thoughts of the self. This struck me as a highly efficacious means to bring about that recollected consciousness I so seek to carry into each moment that greets me, thus did i take up a similar practice.
I began by "saying" in my thoughts, over and over, "one creator". This is the base rhythm from which i can creatively build from and expand upon. I make variations to this, such as "one infinite Creator", "infinity", "unconditional love", "i seek the one", etc. When i began this practice I was repeating the Creator's so-called "name" more than I am now. I was waking up in the night singing that sweet rhythm and, it was strange but my right knee felt like it was swelling with pressure everytime i would start repeating "one infinite Creator". Occasionally I still find myself waking in the night, repeating this phrase.
Though I find it virtually impossible, being in an extremely busy, hectic, and distracted culture and society, I believe that if one could retrain their minds to think upon unity throughout all the moments of their day, they would soon realize that which they were looking for. The difficulty in doing this is that, as i mentioned, there are a million and one distractions that take the mind away, there are as many obligations and duties to see to, and even in an environment with no external distractions, such as meditation, the mind itself is hardwired to be wildly unfocused, rambunctious, undisciplined, and resembling much the behavior of an already high-strung individual having just ingested a liberal does of meth-amphetamines. It wants to do anything BUT become relaxed, still, and one-pointed upon that which, to the analytical mind, seems void and empty.
Remembering your seeking, remembering to greet the moment with both eyes seeing through the circumstance at hand towards the truth, that truth for which the symbols of the physical world only point to but do not equate with, remembering to desire the truth instead of letting the separate self's cravings and aversions run the show for you --- this is key. Like Sarah in the Labyrinth, we are each on a quest where there seem more dead ends, traps, and circular pathways than those which lead to the center. The Labyrinth wishes us to forget our quest and instead lose ourselves in the comforts of sleep and our previous symbols of reference and identity. If only we could keep with us the memory of our seeking at all times! There would be no true barriers except those that we allow to exist. With one-pointed memory of our dedication and the faith that what we seek is already and forever within us, we could walk straight through what would seem like solid walls in the labyrinth of real life. No moment could trick us away from our seeking for very long because the strength of our desire would guide us home no matter our starting point nor our situation relative to the center. We would commence the journey and not stop putting one foot in front of the other until we were on that ground which seemed only a distant echo of a dream in some corner of our hearts when we began.
This practice of Ramanama is the greatest means I have come across for remembering to not be blinded by the red, orange, and yellow ray concerns of survival, sex, social positioning, and power issues. Remembering to see my environment as an illusory manifestation of one being, to see others about myself as the one Creator, and to see myself not as a being of flesh'n'bones but as a being of pure Light, i would not be so easily duped by the mental patterns that are anxious about the future, guilty about the past, and forever concerned in seeking lasting satisfaction in that which does not last. It is a wonderful means for the disciplining of the personality which Ra so commends to the seeker of truth.
That is totally the primary mission: "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you." (Something to that effect.) Everything will sort of "fall into place" when we keep our hearts straight and oriented towards that single truth beneath and beyond the surface play of maya or illusion.
How could one not profit from thinking about, contempltaing, and meditating upon the Creator? What situation would not benefit from bringing the Creator into the forefront of one's thoughts? Isn't it like saying, "I see through this all, Creator. I see the shadows, I see the darkness surrounding me, but I know that this is you, I know that, behind this all and in every iota of this experience is you in all your glory. I no longer wish to be ensnared in samsara, the cosmic delusion. I no longer will look at the world through the eyes of the animal self or the societal self. I will look through your exquisite computer-like program of a finite world seemingly devoid of God and I will see a masterpiece of art, I will see you. I will see the clues embedded deeply within every person, every sensation, every thought, every experience, and ever moment. I will undertake suffering voluntarily and joyfully. I will let go of my attachments to this material existence in order that you might fill me with your truth which is not material. I will wake up from the dream and be with you."
Ramanama is a means to an end. It is a practice which often is without profundity or deep meaning-- I repeat "one creator" while being fully lost within the illusion of daily concerns and worries and stresses, my mind soaked in lesser concerns than seeking the One. Yet, in repeating the words, one part of my consciousness has not let go, one part adamantly clings to the memory of my seeking so that, when more "space" is available within my thoughts, the rest of my conscious self can enjoin the repetition of One Creator and, as a whole, I can focus upon unity, lifting my thinking, my expectations, my hopes and my fears into the light, in songs of praise and thanksgiving, so that that which is not real within me will fall away.
The desire to seek runs deep within me and will resurface regardless of circumstance experienced in the interval and regardless of how deeply distracted i become or how deep in a coma-like sleep I fall... there is no stopping the seeking. With ramanama i hope to make it more constant, to bring it up into my conscious thinking on a more dependable and steady basis so that I may do the work of spiritual evolution in each and every moment, not only in meditation or during my spiritually oriented reading or during those surreal moments when beauty strikes me so hard that I can not help but contemplate the glory of the One Creator. But at all times. This repetition is a means of refining, implementing, and crystallizing intent. By persisting in the repetition, I am softly rapping on infinity’s door. Eventually, that door will open. Until then, I repeat those words which point to a reality which words can never touch, "One Creator".
Published by Bring4th_GLB on January 11, 2009 5:32am. Category: General
The first of the channeling intensives was a memorable event. Leading up to it, during, and after, I believe I saw more repeating digits than either a: I ever have in my entire life or b: I haven't seen in many years. I was astounded how many times my eyes "just happened" to look at the clock to catch a 333 or 444. To bolster the sense of specialness about the weekend, while I didn't see shooting stars as has happened at gatherings past when a certain incarnated celestial body came near my orbit, I had the closest most unusual encounter of my life with a hawk just days before the intensives.
Driving towards Carla and Jim's, a hawk swooped down in front of my windshield, perhaps ten feet away, its wings at what seemed like maximum wingspan, spread across the width of my windshield, it swooped down moving to my right, landing on the far side of a large ditch running parallel to the road i was traveling on. With no one behind me, I stopped the car, put it in reverse, and looked at the hawk through my passenger window. The hawk looked back at me. Amazed, i drove forward, convinced it was somehow related to the upcoming intensive.
Our first practice session at the intensive involved the telling of a story, each person in the circling channeling (or attempting to channel) the next piece of the story. While I wasn't able to serve as a channel through which a contribution could be made, others were. It was a very simple story of a boy who journeys to a distant and exotic land in search of the truth, only to find that the truth was within himself the entire time.
Though a basic story, tears were leaking out from my closed eyelids as it was being told. There was such an innocence about the tale, a purity which, in stark contrast to myself, i felt absent within me. It was as if there was within me a juxtaposition of two worlds. In one world, the world of the story, the Earth was green with thriving, glowing, radiant, vibrant, colorful life, untarnished, pristine, and whole - a paradise, if you will. In the other world, the world of my interior, I found not a green lushness but a thoroughly scorched ground. I felt like all the negative emotions that daily run through me - judgment, bitterness, anger, pettiness - to name a few, have scorched my earth. I saw myself standing on what was formerly an Eden but had been burnt and ruined in the flames of anger and pain. This caused tears, as if I had started out with something so beautiful but in my ignorance turned into a barren no-mans land. Why would I choose to live this way?
I realized that evening, as I have been intuiting for some time now, that I must learn, instill, and cultivate within me those qualities of compassion, softness, tenderness and the ability to relax. To be gentle with myself and with all others, to be kind, generous, and unconditional in my love. Softness is key. My will can be indomitable, my choices firm, my mind single-pointed, my thirst intense, but at the same time I can go about things lightly, gently, without aggression, without inner violence, without cynicism and without resentment for that which is not to my liking. Softness would make the ground again open to the seeds of new life, compassion would water the new seeds with life-giving nutrients, gentleness would encourage the life to grow in what is already a harsh world, and my dedication to seeking the truth would be the light without which few things can grow --- for growth is the reaching for the light.
Published by Bring4th_GLB on January 7, 2009 9:14pm. Category: General
“I want to take the preconceived out from underneath your feet we could shake it off and instead we'll plant some seeds we'll watch them as they grow and with each new beat from your heart the roots grow deeper the branches, well they reach for what?”
Song: All at Once Artist: Jack Johnson Album: Sleep Through the Static
Somehow this communicates something very important to me. See two men with beers in their hand watching their children play together on the playground. Suddenly one of the two isstruck with something profound but can’t quite articulate it. Clutching his beer and lost in watching the joy of his children play on the sunny day, one says to the other, “That’s what it’s all about… that right there is what it’s all about.”
He can’t quite pinpoint those words which are the fundamental teachings of all planes of existence, “unity, love, light, and joy”, yet he glimpses it, feels it, and experiences it through the simplicity of his children playing with the other children. He touches on something so central that it reduces all the complexity to the simple, simple, root experience of joy in the moment… joy unconcerned with the past, untroubled by the future to come… unrelieved joy shining out from the heart of the moment, unimpeded by the attachments to troubles of the conscious mind…
Jack Johnson’s verse above conveys this as well:
”I want to take the preconceived out from underneath your feet” “and instead we’ll plant some seeds and watch them as they grow”
All the *concepts* that we humans identify with, which by and large do not necessarily reflect the natural creation of love, all the concepts that we fight over, all the concepts that separate and divide us, all the concepts that keep us locked into our tight fitting containers which preclude the possibility of opening up and making ourselves vulnerable to the flowing, living, radiant truth that moves outward from the center of the moment…
What we miss is something so simple… if we could just let go of our “preconceived notions” upon which we stand… if we could suspend, even momentarily, all that we think we “know” and together watch seeds grow… to distill our universe of deluded thinking down to that primary level of reality…
We could watch seeds grow and… well, we could watch seeds grow… and we might understand as we watch seeds grow that we are one… we could watch the process of life itself, that intelligently directed and ultimately loving process of a seed bursting forth from the soil of the earth to reach for the light… something so basic… love reaching for love… we could watch seeds grow and ask ourselves, “What is there to be so troubled with? When our basic needs are met, why do we remain so unsatisfied? How can we as humans grow and live like plants and animals yet be so unnatural? Where is the conflict? Why hate the seed growing next to me because it thinks something differently?"
Many lessons we could draw from watching and understanding the Process that sees to itself, the process of growth from seed to plant to decay to death. The process of the inexorable evolutionary drive within every iota of creation.
This will come across as hopelessly naive, but... The militant Israeli and a militant Palestinian could release the win-less struggle and watch seeds grow… the warring Hindus and Muslims and of India and Pakistan could forget the hatred for a moment and watch seeds grow… the members of my own family could forgive the past and watch seeds grow… all could LET GO for just a moment and connect into what is universal, what is common to us all, what is not located exclusively within the soil of the earth but what in parallel grows forth from the soil of our hearts in the moment…
Of course things are more complex than this. But through the meditative process, the layers of complexity can be simplified and distilled down to an essence within which the shining truth of unity can become a direct apprehension, an immediate first-hand experience.
In an infinite universe, there is only identity. If all modes of perception are potentially available to each entity, it becomes a matter of where the focus and attention is laid which determines what we identify with. It becomes a matter of tuning the radio of our consciousness to receive and understand the deeper or higher or more light-filled carrier waves of the One Great Original Thought. Watching seeds grow and transmuting the energies of separation is not a reduction of consciousness in the sense that consciousness, or anything of value, is lost... on the contrary, to watch seeds grow and apprehend the underlying unity to life is to transcend limited thinking, to move a metaphorical step up on the ladder or spectrum of consciousness to an ascendant point of view.
“from your heart the roots grow deeper the branches, well they reach for what?”
What do they branches reach for? We would be wise to ask ourselves. What is the direction of life and what is it that we, like the branches, reach for? We can make conscious what the branches know only unconsciously, instinctually. We can make conscious that we not only reach for the light, but we are the light, that through our actions and basic energetic vibration we shine the light into this world and the hearts of others... Let us just stop our activities for a moment and together, watch a seed grow...
I, btw, am learning to love Jack Johnson the way I do Dave Matthews… his skin grows transparent to a radiant soul, a source of light shining through the form and the voice… Valerie does not yet enjoy his new album, “Sleep Through the Static” as much as the others because it’s not as upbeat and perky as the others, but lyrically it’s his most reflective and it is written, I feel, from a place of greater depth.
Published by Bring4th_GLB on January 7, 2009 4:31am. Category: General
I shall describe not the incorrigible self of personality which is hopelessly and permanently riddled with distortion. I instead shall describe that which is at the center and depths of my heart, that which beats in creative rhythms of rest and passion, being and doing.
Who am I? Reduced to its simplest form: I seek the One. This is my response, this is my purpose, my passion, my faith, my service, my raison d'etre, my identity. I am he who seeks the One.
Nothing is more true within myself than that which I affirm: “I seek the One”. That is the unchanging rock upon which I stand, that is the North Star within, that is my Polaris of self. In the courses of these successive cycles around the sun, everything else shifts, changes, transforms, and falls away. This remains and grows in strength: I seek the One.
In this seeking of the One, I know not how and when I make so-called progress, I know not how the finite self and the infinite self shall meet within this soul, but I know by what mechanism the process is activated, enabled, and moved upward. The Law of One states that, “Your faculty of will is that which is powerful within you as co-Creator. You cannot ascribe to this faculty too much importance.” Also, “The inner light is that which is your heart of being. Its strength equals your strength of will to seek the light.”
I have discovered that which the Law of One speaks of – the engine of evolution living within me which moves towards the light. It, the coiled serpent, has awoken within me --- I have turned it on; It calls to me --- I invoke it; It pushes me forward --- I utilize it for forward movement. I seek the One.
In this seeking, I can not navigate my way with a skill that sees the road immediately in front of me, for truly I move forward in blindness, seeing nothing ahead and knowing nothing of my true situation. I am helpless in the sense of being able to skillfully plot a course to unity; I don’t possess this knowledge and have no training in cartography. What is within my power to do, what I consciously commit to in this life of “Gary Bean”, is to intensify this will within me: to increase determination, to never relinquish persistence, to purify my desire, to cleanse my heart, to be eternally constant in the attempt.
The intensification of the will is the intensification of a homing beacon, I feel. While I carry and bear the burden, the homing beacon does the bulk of the work because the will, carefully directed in service to others, operating largely below the threshold of conscious awareness, knows its way home.Though I am the caged bird who breathes free air but does not yet know freedom as an immediate experience, I am a creature possessed of will. The will, persistently exercised, intelligently calls to it those opportunities which unlock the self from its material prison with each act of self-sacrifice. As that bird, I use the will to seek the One and let go of the cage.
My knowing of the ultimate, final, and true direction of will comes through faith; for without faith, the will never leaves the ground. By faith and faith alone I trust that my seeking shall bear fruit; by faith I am utterly convinced that transformation is possible and is happening within me; by faith I know of the rightness of the Path and by faith I know of the existence of the Path itself; by faith I exercise the will to jump off the next precipice (always hoping for the opportunity of that final leap into infinity); by faith my steering is unerring, even when making apparent errors in course; by faith I walk the straight and narrow, even when I meander, propelled forward by the will to seek; by faith I sense the jewels buried underneath the surface of illusion, awaiting my discovery; by faith I understand that, within the incarnation, eternal reality can be realized, union with the One experienced, and intelligent infinity contacted by all who truly seek to know in order to serve. By faith I seek to dance with infinity in the seeming chains of the finite, to experientially know the ground of all being and, from that level, operate within the commonplace affairs of the manifest world. By faith I relax and know that all is well. I seek the One and by faith I know who I am.
I can not lose this seeking, I can not forget this seeking for very long, (how could I turn my back on myself?) No other concern can override this seeking for very long for it is my nature as it is the sun’s nature to shine; from within, it surfaces constantly; I seek to cultivate it, be more conscious of it, and make more room for it. It is that force around which my adult life has been crafted, it is that drive which will shine from me unto the very last breath. I am like the ox marching through the deep mire. I am tired, my load is heavy, but my gaze ahead is unwavering and forward I march, slowly but steadily until I leave the mire. I seek the One.
When I am at work, I seek the One, when I am at play, I seek the One, when I am driving to my girlfriend’s, when I am shopping in the grocery store, when I am reading the news, when I am eating peanut butter, when I am forming my perceptions of the world, when I am reacting to those about me, when I am lost in confusion and turmoil, I seek the One. In every person I meet, in every animal that crosses my path, in every plant reflecting light into my eyes, I seek the One. In all circumstances, my seeking is. There is no moment that the Creator does not belong in, in terms of my conscious awareness; there is no activity outside of the seeking. The true Tao can not be deviated from; all things are instruments and symbols for knowing the One. From one shore to the other I will cross, my raft made of all means possible. I seek the One in and through *ALL* experiences.
Yet I am not the active, male principle alone. I am also the feminine, I am also the passive. I seek the One with the yin energies flowing through one hand and the yang energies flowing through the other. Thus when I reach, I wait, receptively. When I call out to the Creator, I listen for the Creator. When I activate the will, I remain still. When I rise to the heights of exalted passion, I am patient without attachment to outcome. When I am alert and vigilant, ever watching and observing, I am passive, seemingly inactive. When I view multiplicity, I see with singleness of vision – the One. When I seek freedom in emptiness, I also embrace form – as the mirror does its image. I seek the invisible yet ever perceptible. I seek the One.
I am the will to seek. I have made a decision, I have made a commitment – in this lifetime or the next – I will realize what I seek, I will experience that which I seek, I will become that which I seek. As faith opens up the tight containers of thought to depths and heights unfathomable, I will transcend words, concepts, and my own thinking to drink in the pure mystery from which they, the finite, sprang. I will let go of the personality and gain that which is essential. I will accept that which occurs to me in the daily round of activities, mortifying and sacrificing the self-centered, self-interested, self-willed desires, cravings and aversions, making room for the One through the channel of this self. I seek the One.
By virtue of this seeking, these upper most layers of consciousness with which I am somewhat familiar, this small self which in many conceptual ways is an opaque barrier to the One, will be rendered a transparent doorway through which the One is known because I, like all others, am the doorway through which the Creator is known. I AM literally the door, the gateway exists within. I seek the One.
The small self is my starting point. From there I begin and – standing balanced in self-acceptance and self-knowledge, becoming humble and transparent, aware of both my apparent distortions and total perfection – I will unconditionally love the ever misguided small self and ride the shuttle to what is known as intelligent infinity. This continual dispassionate observation – requiring consistent and disciplined will – makes room for the light of the Logos to shine into and onto that surface personality. I seek the One and learn to love this self formed of and lost within the illusion yet regenerated by grace from the One. I seek the One.
Ultimately, “I” who seeks the One is not “I” as I understand myself but the Creator seeking through me. My seeking IS the creator waking up within me, Spirit becoming aware of itself. This seeking I intensify, this I fuel, and this I return to with concentration. I make it stronger, carefully direct it, and let the seeking go forth from my being to locate and beckon the One who responds to such calls.
The Original Desire is waking within me, my heart is beginning to realize that above and beyond all else, it loves and yearns for the One. My heart loves the beauty, the peace, the power, the majesty, the unity in multiplicity, the love, the light, and the process, the day by day restless battle to find rest. It loves the strength and the independence to continue the walk on its own two feet, step by sacred step. Thus does it seek to give itself to the One, to dedicate its life and consecrate all its actions to the One. The innermost core of my heart seeks the beloved, the transcendent, the immanent, the nothingness, the immediate everythingness. I seek the One.
I am the will to seek. As in meditation, so in my daily round of activities. In both modes of activity/being I am the indomitable persistence to return again and again and again and again – gently, compassionately – to return to the center from which the One is sought. Through the distraction, I return to the still point; through the mental mismanagement of the truth, I return to the heart; through the temptations to satisfy the separate self’s endless cravings and aversions, I return gently to the true desire; through the cramped places of unknowing and pain, I return calmly to an even minded hope; through the stress of the workday which rushes my mind into the next moment, I return my focus to the only moment, this one; through the scatterbrained thinking of the everyday self, I return with discipline to single pointed-ness; through the deafening roar of western world noise and distortion, I return again to the quiet. I am the will to persist.
I am he who repeats the name of the nameless over and over in my thoughts, in my mantras, in my actions; ceaselessly I am he who prays to see and to know the face of the faceless. I have and I am the will to seek.
With all my heart I love and seek the One. Infinity is right here; Eternity is right now. I am building a bridge to them, I am choosing them, I am that bridge. I am the will to seek.