a b i d e … r e s t … m e l t

What if there was a world you could slip into without effort of any kind, a world where you had no name, no status, no history?  A world where you didn’t have to know anything about striving to be richer, healthier, more creative, more attractive, more lovable? Imagine a world where the words enlightenment, awakening, freedom, salvation, were yet to be thought-up.  What if that world was real and ever-available, no conditions ever attached?

And what if that world was the Real World, for it was – unlike the dream world one normally inhabits – ever-present and changeless?  What if that world – which would be more accurately called ‘world-ing’ – was one’s natural home and substance?  What if IT was closer, more intimate than anything one could conceive?

Wouldn’t that change everything?

IT is here, right now, in just this.  Just this everythingness and whateverness.

Abide.  Rest.  Melt.

The Oneness we fondly call Beloved is waiting: bouquets in one hand, a big broom in the other.  You will be taken, you will be loved, you will be cleansed and re-formatted.  And you will eventually  – it might take a while, depending on the extent of your self-delusion – find it impossible to return to the old world.  In fact it ceases to exist for you; it has been absorbed by the new View.

What if all it took was a backing away from beliefs of any kind – even poetic expressions like the previous paragraph?  What if thoughts of any kind were the only obstacle to Truth?

Wouldn’t you want to find out for yourself?

You are warmly invited.  Admittance is free … but costs everything.

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the biggest mistake

Sometimes the sweet synchronicity of life is enough to render one speechless.  I’ve commented several times about how Awareness – aka Freedom, Beloved, Reality, Truth, or whatever your pet word for IT might be – excludes nothing, and I mean nothing.  Surprisingly, perhaps, an opening, a softening towards this unknowable essence seems to relax one’s default defenses and allow some pretty challenging stuff to surface.  Not that it must be ‘dealt with’ or analyzed or healed or anything – that doesn’t occur to one. The stuff comes up, it’s allowed – without a story unfolding – tears flow or not, and it all vaporizes.  It can be heavy, but Awareness remains unmoved.

What changes, in terms of one’s experience, is this: the relationship with what arises from within, or what is dealt from without, is radically different.  Suffering simply doesn’t occur, because there are no preferences being trotted out.  And it seems that the more one’s default position is that of quietly resting as pure undivided Awareing, the sweeter, easier and calmer life becomes.  (Well, it always was thus, but one’s been too busy organizing it to notice.)

So I’ve always been slightly mystified by those who claim that this utterly natural state somehow obliterates the undesirable bits of human experience.  They write or speak of attributes like love and compassion and bliss – which they often prescribe practices to develop.  Is it even logical to consider developing that which is already utterly natural? I’m not sure which part of the goose isn’t cooked for such folk, but they haven’t got to the stuffing yet.  So when this little gem arrived from Jax I took out my cheering pompoms and did a little dance.  No, I wasn’t photographed – unseemly for a woman of a certain age … chuckles …

But the biggest mistake that almost all practitioners and teachers make is to think that when one is in Awareness, that one will have a pleasurable, peaceful, spacious state free of uncomfortable emotions, ego and confused thoughts.

Actually Awareness has no content of its “own”.  It is not bliss. It is not clarity.  It is not love.  It is not peace.  It is not compassion.  But it is present in all of those as well as every other possible experience equally.
~ Jackson Peterson

Speaking of women of a certain age, I can’t resist sharing a tit-bit from my favorite stand-up comic of the nonduality circus – wideawake Viki Woodyard. Vicki is someone who knows a great deal about the kind of tough cards life can deal. But she grabs the chocolates and scribbles on:

Today I have eaten sugar again and again. Why? Because it is there; heaped on the kitchen counter are a marzipan Yule Pig, a Mozart Piano Bar, a chocolate Santa, a coconut wreath, Godiva Peppermint Truffles and Gems, Lindt Truffles, Dove Chocolates, A Smore wrapped in cellophane and a little box of Jelly Belly Bean Boozles. These feature jelly beans with the auspicious titles of Skunk Spray, Pencil Shavings, Canned Dog Food, Barf and yes, my favorite, Baby Wipes.

I look in the mirror and see a pasty face with a terrible haircut. See a woman who has recently been crying and not becomingly. Is this the girl that started out on her spiritual quest determined to find the meaning of life. That slender sylph that had dark hair and naturally arched eyebrows. Look again. She is now squarely in her sixties, a writer coming into her own at an alarmingly advanced age. She is usually frank, truthful and edgy. Couple that with graceful, simple and tender and you have a fraction of what it was to be married to said writer. Nothing I would wish on anybody. Nevertheless, someone is looking down on me with love and hoping I will find my way to being a real writer one day soon. What does he know, sitting up there on his fluffy white cloud? The guy needs a Bean Boozle if you ask me. I still have a Rotten Egg and a Booger left. If that won’t entice him to come back down here on earth, I don’t know what will.
~Vicki Woodyard

 


It’s gotta be the ultimate Reality check, you know:  can you recognize the Truth in a barf or a booger?


on freedom, suffering and intimacy

What’s the most life-changing thing I’ve encountered this year?  No contest.  It’s the in-your-face gut-gripping truth about freedom.

We are taught to associate freedom with something:  freedom from…, or freedom to…  But freedom stands free of this or that or from or to.  Freedom is its own omnipresence, and it is as free at the beginning as at the end – if there were beginnings and ends to be found.

Freedom, for me, has been a long fishing line that has trawled deep and gathered up a submerged shoal of stuff I’d never have imagined would be of remote interest to it.  It has fished up pain – both personal and global.  It has fished up lostness, failure, grief, contrition, alienation, futility, sadness and depression.  It has fished up fear.  It has brought all these precious human qualities to the surface to be acknowledged, fully felt and wept over.  It has held my pen as I scribbled its dictation, and kept its ruthless gaze focused as my eyes inundated.  (Tears!  A lifetime’s quota in a year: where were they all stashed away?)  It has broken my heart again and again and yet again as I groped for some kind of relatedness that might make me feel known and needed by family and friends.  It has showed no mercy, while lovingly embracing my every tiny surrender.

Freedom is simply beyond comprehension.  It liberates every known corner of consciousness and every unimaginable one as well.  Freedom is a place where there are no life-buoys, no search and rescue teams, no hand-holds, no paths or maps, no cozy cults or religious refuges to retreat within.  It is a place beyond time.  Imagine that!  You can’t.  Me either.

No wonder we invest everything we have in serious avoidance of freedom.

So, ok, it’s been a challenging year or three, but going backwards isn’t an option.  It’s a one-way tide:  destination unknown.  But here’s the bonus:  freedom has made suffering history.  And that’s what has utterly amazed me this year.  Suffering is an extinct notion.

Suffering is needing – demanding – that ‘my’ experience of livingness be other than what-it-is.

Freedom is uncensored, unedited and unqualified intimacy with everything, just-as-it-is.

Warts and wondrousness and all.

~ miriam louisa

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thus spake the heart-whisperer

Dear One –

– you will never be more at home
than in the ceaseless energy
of your body’s wild word

– you will never know purer peace
than in your blessed breathtide

– you will never find more happiness
than in this miracle-moment

– you will never find truer love
than in your own forgiving embrace

– you will never be more creative
than when you disappear

– you will never know life’s purpose
outside of simply living it

– you will never be more free
than before you contemplated freedom

– you will never be more awake
than within the quiet murmur
of your soft, animal, secret senses

– you will never find your self
apart from your changeless
inescapable
light of being

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~ miriam louisa

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one holy wholeness

what happens

when one no longer needs to be liked or praised?

when one stops being concerned about criticism?

when one no longer longs for happiness?

when one stops worrying about being unhappy?

when one no longer yearns to gain?

when one ceases to care about loss?

when one no longer wants to be special?

when one is content to be ignored?

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beloved, one is One

welcome home to holy wholeness!

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the ‘me’ that I have always loved

The end of becoming is knowing that you never could, and never have, become anything in the first place other than what you already are.  And what you already are has never been subject to becoming ever.

When the Gordian knot of ignorance (taking my self to be the body/mind) slips apart, then I see, Wow!  This existence consciousness which I am, never becomes, never changes, is ever the same, and it is the most wonderful constant ‘me’ that I have always loved in every changing moment.

It is what I always wanted to be!  And what I always wanted to be, I am!  Amazing!

There is nothing that I can do to become my self, because I am already my self, and the recognition of that is called freedom!

~ Durga

stalking the seeker-self

Wholeness doesn’t play games. Wholeness (aka freedom) is at the beginning, not at the end. It isn’t an outcome. It doesn’t occur in time, and the waiting game is, with respect, just another game, an entertainment.

Seeking is the natural movement of Wholeness returning to Itself.
Waiting isn’t a movement. It’s the static strategy of a tenacious seeker-self.

Stalking the seeker-self seems to me to be crucial. It’s an authentic part of the movement of genuine “seeking”. (A while back I posted a poem of David Whyte’s – sitting zen– which expresses this tracking with haunting beauty.)

Whatever psychological or spiritual weapons are used in the hunt, the basic process boils down to a bottom line where one simply stops “… in mutual and respectful quiet”.

One stops stalling. Stops waiting. Stops story-telling.

Stops, without a “so that …”, or an “in order to …

Stopping is lethal to seeker-selves of all faiths and denominations. It’s also probably the most compassionate, loving thing one can do for oneself. (And the world.)

– miriam louisa