Seeking And Finding, The “Get Real” Factor

If you dream of finding a great Teacher, a Master, the operative advice is, “get real.” Great teachers may appear once in a hundred years. Masters require great sacrifice of those willing to follow them … and as we are not prepared to pay the price, it’s best to start exactly where we find ourselves with the help that is within reach. More likely I can find a guide, someone who knows the way but is still in the process of becoming. A useful guide is one who will help me to connect to my authentic self, that self that is connected to God. No shame, no blame, no fear, marks this journey, where every inner movement needs to be seen without judgment.  – His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama

inevitably, sooner or later the teacher dies.

We will hear his voice no more.
It is the end of an era.
You, you mourn.
With the spiritual parent gone, you are no longer the child.
What is a pupil to do?
To find another teacher seems necessary, but wait— What did he or she teach you?  The source of  “I Am” is within.

Richard Gere inspired by the Dalai Lama

George Harrison and Ravi Shankar inspired

by The Hari Krishnas and Sathya Sai Baba

Deva Premal and Miten Inspired by Osho

FINDING

The wise say I can learn from everyone I meet.  But exactly what is it that is being learned? What can I glean from some rough lout, some timid or repressed soul, some crazy?  Surely they have nothing to teach an educated person like me. But there is no better teacher than the mirror, and every person can be my mirror, reflecting back to me some aspect of myself, particularly when it is something I dislike. I contain multitudes, as Walt Whitman put it. There is nothing I can see in another that I do not also contain to some degree—cheat, murderer, martyr, hero, and much more. Looking closely I discover that fundamentally we are all alike—all subject to the same passions and hopes, and this touches a feeling of compassion in me that does not otherwise appear.

My deepest guilty secret is gradually revealed to me: I believe that at least in some respect, I am better than everyone else. Only a penetrating view of my inner world dispels this pernicious illusion.
Books are helpful—reading prepares the mind and books are available where a living guide is not to be found. But eventually we need the human connection. A book cannot look back at me and hear my tone of voice. It cannot remind me to release the tension in my shoulders. It does not know when I am ready for the next step.

https://parabola.org/2014/07/26/how-to-find-a-spiritual-teacher/

Every Warrior Of Light (Inspirational Quotations)

beauty of the arts
beauty of the arts
I guess the sun shows up every morning even in winter, no matter how bad we may have been the night before and how sick we feel in the morning. It shines without judgment on all. It never withholds even a beam of light. It warms both sinners and the saints, the druggies, the cheerleaders the saved and the heathens alike. We can hide from the sun, but the sun is not personal to anyone in particular. It´ll never, ever punish us for hiding away or choosing the shade. We can stay in the dark for years or decades, and when we finally step outside, it´ll be there waiting and shining and making the world lighter.  ~ Eve

 

angel_n

“Every Warrior of the Light has felt afraid of going into battle.
Every Warrior of the Light has, at some time in the past, lied or betrayed someone.
Every Warrior of the Light has trodden a path that was not his.
Every Warrior of the Light has suffered for the most trivial of reasons. Every Warrior of the Light has, at least once, believed he was not a Warrior of the Light.
Every Warrior of the Light has failed in his spiritual duties.
Every Warrior of the Light has said ‘yes’ when he wanted to say ‘no.’
Every Warrior of the Light has hurt someone he loved.
That is why he is a Warrior of the Light, because he has been through all this and yet has never lost hope of being better than he is.”


― Paulo Coelho

Beauty of the Arts
Beauty of the Arts

Eye To Eye – Story From the Buddha – Myths and Legends

hoto

arumlily7

 photo from Eve’s flower collection – England 2016

 

The Buddha was visiting a small village in India. Several  people brought a blind man to him and said,

 

“This man is blind and we are his closest friends. Although we try in every way to convince him that there is light, he is not ready to accept such a fact. His arguments are such that we are at a loss. Even though we know that there is light, we have to admit defeat. The man tells us that he wants to touch the light. Now how do we make it possible for him to touch the light? Then the man says, ‘Ok, if it cannot be touched then I want to hear it. I have ears. Make the sound of light so that I can hear it. If this is also not possible then I want to taste it, or if the light has a fragrance I want to smell it.'”

There is no way to convince the man. Light can only be seen if one has eyes – and he has no eyes. He complained to the village people that they were unnecessarily talking about light just to prove that he was blind. He felt that they had invented the story of light just to prove him blind.

So the people asked Buddha if, as he was in the village for a while, perhaps he could make their blind man understand.

Buddha said, “I am not mad enough to try to convince him! Mankind’s problems have been created by people who have tried to explain things to those who cannot see. Preachers are a plague to humanity. They tell people things which they cannot understand.”

So he said, “I won’t make this mistake. I will not explain to this blind man that there is light. You have brought him to the wrong person. There was no need to bring him to me, take him instead to a physician who can treat his eyes. He does not need preaching, he needs treatment. This is not a question of explanations, or of him believing in things you tell him, it is a question of treatment for his eyes. If his eyes get cured then there will be no need for you to explain; he himself will be able to see, he himself will be able to know.”

Buddha was saying that he didn’t consider religion to be just a philosophical teaching – it should be a practical cure. So he recommended that the blind man be taken to a physician.

The villagers liked what Buddha said so they took the blind man to a physician for treatment and fortunately he was cured after a few months. By that time Buddha had gone to another village so the blind man followed him. He bowed to Buddha, touched his feet and said, “I was wrong. There is such a thing as light but I couldn’t see it.”

Buddha answered, “You were certainly wrong, but your eyes got cured because you refused to believe what others told you unless you experienced it for yourself. If you had accepted what your friends had told you then the matter would have ended there and no question of treatment for your eyes would have arisen.”

One should search for one’s own understanding because one cannot attain anything by worshipping the insights of another. In fact, the search for one’s own understanding can only begin when one drops the idea of the other. As long as there is any outer substitute, as long as something is being supplied from the outside, the search cannot begin.

Nobody can reach anywhere in somebody else’s boat. And nobody can see with another’s eye – nobody ever has and nobody ever will. One has to walk on one’s own feet, one has to see with one’s own eyes, one has to live by one’s own heart beat. One has to live by oneself and one has to die by oneself. Nobody can live in another’s place; nobody can die in another’s place. Nobody can take another’s place; neither can one take anybody else’s place. If there is anything totally impossible in this world, it is the fact that no one can take anyone else’s place.

OSHO

The First God – A story from the Chhandogya Upanishad/Inspirational

Isabelle V. Lim
Isabelle V. Lim

What if you gave someone a beautiful gift, and they neglected to thank you for it, would you ever give them another?  Life is the same way. In order to attract more of the blessings that life has to offer, we must truly appreciate what we already have. For God is in everything. Food comes from God. In fact food is our first God, although we often forget. Here’s a story about that. 🙂


In the Upanishads there is a beautiful story. Shvetketu, a young man, came back from the university full of knowledge. He was a brilliant student, he had topped the university with all the medals and all the degrees that were possible, available. He came back home with great pride.

His old father, Uddalak, looked at him and asked him a single question. He said to him, “You have come full of knowledge, but do you know the knower? You have accumulated much information, your consciousness is full of borrowed wisdom — but what is this consciousness? Do you know who you are?”

Shvetketu said, “But this question was never raised in the university. I have learned the Vedas, I have learned language, philosophy, poetry, literature, history, geography. I have learned all that was available in the university, but this was not a subject at all. You are asking a very strange question; nobody ever asked me in the university. It was not on the syllabus, it was not in my course.”

Uddalak said, “You do one thing: be on a fast for two weeks, then I will ask you something.”

He wanted to show his knowledge, just a young man’s desire. He must have dreamed that his father would be very happy. Although the father was saying, “Wait for two weeks and fast,” he started talking about the ultimate, the absolute, the Brahman.

The father said, “You wait two weeks, then we will discuss about Brahman.”

artwork Isabelle V. Lim
artwork
Isabelle V. Lim

Two days’ fast, three days’ fast, four days’ fast, and the father started asking him, “What is Brahman?” In the beginning he answered a little bit, recited what he had crammed, displayed. But by the end of the week he was so tired, so exhausted, so hungry, that when the father asked, “What is Brahman?” he said, “Stop all this nonsense! I am hungry, I think only of food and you are asking me what Brahman is. Right now, except food nothing is Brahman.”

The father said, “So your whole knowledge is just because you were not starved. Because you were taken care of, your body was nourished, it was easy for you to talk about great philosophy. Now is the real question. Now bring your knowledge!”

Shvetketu said, “I have forgotten all. Only one thing haunts me: hunger, hunger – day in, day out. I cannot sleep, I cannot rest. There is fire in my belly, I am burning, and I don’t know anything at all. I have forgotten all that I have learned.”

The father said, “My son, food is the first step towards Brahman. Food is Brahman — ANNAM BRAHMA.” A tremendously significant statement. India has forgotten it completely. ANNAM BRAHMA: food is God, the first God.

OSHO

Oneness – Rumi

If an earthen pot is on the ground and we turn it over and place it upside down, and if the pot then looks up, it will see only its earthen body, not the sky. Kept upside down, even if the pot looks upwards, what will it see? All it will be able to see is its own base, its own layer of mud — its body — but not the sky. Then we place the pot the right way up, its face towards the sky. Then when it looks up toward the sky it will be able to see, “I am not the body.” Now the pot will also be able to see, “The small sky which is within me is the same sky that is outside; and between the two of us nowhere is there any gap, we are inseparable. It is me who has expanded into the sky above, and it is the sky above that has come all the way down into me — nowhere is there any obstacle, any boundary, any wall in between.”

A similar thing happens when you are looking towards your body; you are like a pot turned upside down — you see only the body. When you turn away from your body, you become like a pot kept right way up — now you are facing the sky. As a person turns away from the body, immediately he is focused towards the sky and sees for the first time that there is not even a grain of difference between him and this vast existence spread all around. He has become the vast existence, the vast existence has reached out to him.

 

O SEEKER OF THE TRUTH! BY KNOWING THE ONENESS OF THE SOUL AND THE SUPREME SOUL, JUST LIKE THE ONENESS OF GHATAKASH, THE SKY WITHIN A POT, AND MAHAKASH, THE SKY WITHOUT A POT, UNDIVIDEDLY BE ALWAYS PEACEFUL.
~Osho

“SAY WHO I AM”

I am dust particles in sunlight.
I am the round sun.

To the bits of dust I say, ‘Stay.’
To the sun, ‘Keep moving.’

I am morning mist,
and the beginning of evening.

I am wind in the top of a grove,
and surf on the cliff.

Mast, rudder, helmsman, and keel,
I am also the coral reef they founder on.

I am a tree with a trained parrot in its branches.
Silence, thought, and voice.

The musical air coming through a flute,
a spark off a stone, a flickering

in metal. Both candle,
and the moth crazy around it.

Rose, and the nightingale
lost in the fragrance.

I am all orders of being, the circling galaxy,
the evolutionary intelligence, the lift,

and the falling away. What is,
and what isn’t. You who know

Jelaluddin, You the One
in all, say who

I am. Say I
am You.”

– Rumi, from THE HAND OF POETRY: FIVE MYSTIC POETS OF PERSIA (ISBN 0930872479)