To be alert, conscious of our own reactions and our environment as Life unfolds, at every moment, is the essence of being awake.
Otherwise, the mind has a continuous voice which we call “I.” That voice labels, judges, compares using the benchmark of its own conditioning. That voice clouds the perception of objectivity. Under that spell, the “same old thing” is the rule. That is safe, it is comfortable but at the same time unbearable, as Life loses its taste. We are eating the same thing over and over again.
When that voice is gone, we are free without “thinking” about it. We are free without running after the ideal. We experience a different reality.
How to “get rid” of that voice? By being aware of it.
Awareness is not some “action” that we do once in a while when we remember to do it; a “practice,” No!
Awareness grows naturally as our consciousness expands, that is when our pettiness shrinks.
Pettiness? Can you elaborate on that?
Our concern for salvation. Our desire for heaven. Our merchant mentality looking for personal profit in everything we do, whether worldly or spiritual, etc.
Our fear to face the unexpected is pettiness. Our hidden desire to be the “center of the universe” is utmost pettiness.
Many have their own life stories full of beliefs, interpretations about how life is “treating them.” Their sentimentality brings the “victim” syndrome which eventually, shows up as violence.
Everyone has their share of ups and downs in Life. We cannot compare which one is “greater,” for our capacity to adapt, enjoy and cope are different. Nevertheless, Life has lessons which are tailor made for every single one of us. Nothing is left to chance.
A lesson learned means the opportunity to increase our awareness.
How? Lessons in Life are meant to bring every resource we have gathered through experience. We just need the “right combination,” to use “the right set of tools.” That is known as maturity, which dilutes our pettiness.
There are many grown ups without maturity, for this doesn’t come with age necessarily but rather through assimilation of experiences.
We could experience many things in Life but unless there is assimilation of those experiences through impartial observation of them, those experiences become trauma, pettiness; which will not allow us to expand our consciousness.
It is particularly at this time, when we may need to become aware of our violent nature which may not be expressed physically against another, but nonetheless could be expressed through our own opinions, beliefs and idiosyncrasies.
Being aware of our violence is the practical way to allow love to flourish. Otherwise, love is relegated to be another pretty word used to sell more widgets, and to hide our fear to face our inner reality.
Many are inspired by gurus, saints and self proclaimed self-realized individuals, in their search for “enlightenment,” a “higher state,” etc. for they want to achieve that state for themselves.
Because these individuals think that to become “better” and achieve something as they have done in society, is “good.” Their role models fit that aspiration.
We may think that such goal is laudable, that it is something “good” to pursue and encourage the seeker to “obtain” that, to “achieve” it, so he can be a model too and tell us “how to get it” for ourselves later on.
Observe the desire to achieve. Observe the typical “modus operandi” in action: It is the same “method” that we have learned to DO and accomplish things in “Life.” We believe in “hard work” and steady effort to “achieve” this aspiration of “enlightenment” as well, by following the same.
Nevertheless, “spirituality” or the art of living Life in fulfillment; doesn’t follow the ways we have learned through centuries of conditioning.
Until we don’t realize that, we will be repeating the same pattern. A “higher state of BEING” is not like getting a job, or working hard through endless repetition of methods. As a matter of fact, our desires for such achievement, are of no consequence. It is not like what we have been taught.
Still, the machinery is at work in search for profit. Books, classes and other sources of information are sold to “help” the seeker to “achieve” his goals.
That is snake oil. However, it has a placebo effect according to the depth of belief.
Here is the premise to understand: The same ego, the same “I,” the same “mind” trying to achieve something “great” such as a higher state of BEING is the one required to melt away.
Thus, isn’t that desire to achieve something, coming from the same ego-mind which needs to wither away? “Oh Ok…then, I will achieve and then wither the ego away…” If it was like that, then everyone could be self-realized in “3 simple steps.”
A “higher state” is not achievable. For there will be no “I,” there to achieve. Further, a “higher state” only happens according to the need of time to those whose life experience calls for that. That “event” is beyond our DOING.
Let me be more explicit: The “I,” the “mind,” the “ego,” achieves through action, through DOING something. Observe how religions and spiritual paths have many rituals, commandments and practices thought to “better” a person.
However, DOING does not change BEING. DOING can only change behavior but never BEING.
No matter how many times we repeat some “practice,” BEING cannot change. BEING does not change due to the strong desire of the “ego-mind” to “succeed.” Spirituality is in the realm of BEING first, not DOING to cover BEING.
If the above is clearly understood, then we will face the “reality” that truly AWARENESS is the trademark of a conscious existence, which is not concerned in bringing change to itself, as change naturally happens; but rather OBSERVES, is AWARE of how it happens and naturally allows for it to happen at its own time. ALLOWING is key, when ego has been taught to control.
It is of paramount importance to understand what AWARENESS is, but the catch is that it cannot be explained or defined. There is the dictionary definition, but that is not the EXPERIENTIAL, complete, unmistakably meaning. As the experience of awareness happens and we become more conscious, then we will know.
In the meantime and until that happens, there are tons of “self-help” books, classes and information to help us “achieve” our spiritual goals; whether that is “heaven,” “self-realization,” or some other goal desired by the ego driven mind. It is good to get “busy.” 🙂
Yes, there is something for everyone.
Any seeker looking to find “truth,” is only using the conditioned mind to understand Life. That cannot happen, for the conditioned mind has parameters to look, to search, and those parameters are very small. Life is immense.
Any “spiritual” class or talk given by someone deemed to be “advanced” is bound to be misunderstood. Those words cannot be taken literally. Those can only be small pointers. “Truth” cannot be put into a paragraph. No one can ever have the objective “truth.” We can only have facts.
What is the difference between facts and truth?
Facts are coming from the same parameters accepted by a group of people or society and thus, seemingly objective. Truth is subjective, according to experience. So, there is “my” truth. To find our “truth” is all there is.
If we say that “truth” is according to fact or reality, we are merely sugar coating a fact, for the word “truth” has authoritarian connotation.
Person A pulled the trigger and killed person B. That fact could be proven.
Person C died due to “mysterious” causes (meaning unknown.) Some say it was medical negligence, others go for some sort of sorcery, witchcraft. That cannot be proven. However, Life will bring consequences for the ones killing others. Since we are part of Life, we cannot escape Life.
My last sentence may seem like some fact, but it is only a belief unless we have the experience. Then, that becomes our truth. It doesn’t become a fact.
Is God a fact?
God is someone’s truth, but a belief for those without the experience.
In our society, we value facts. Life for the ones living in awareness, is about finding our own truth. That is a continuous task. Those who make a philosophy out of their own findings, are trying to make a fact out of their own truth. Followers will believe that to be the unquestionable “truth.”
Living Life in awareness and learning to swim, has many things in common.
Swimming is not floating. Yet, some who can only float will call that swimming. There are some who can swim, but their movement is not efficient and enjoyable. Are they truly swimming?
Someone who is perfecting his swimming style, could watch many videos from the “experts,” but until we are able to become self aware and catch our own movements by feeling them, then we will able to recognize some of the words given by the “experts.” That recognition through experience is knowing.
The bottom line is that each swimmer will need to find out what actually works for them. That is to find our “truth” at every moment and to be authentic, true to ourselves. That is honesty.
The path of honesty is not easy, but there is fulfillment in that journey. Nevertheless, many prefer to follow “the truth,” as given by someone else and believe in it.
A believer does not have facts or truth, but only a belief.
The mind is a repository of information, memories. It is almost like a hard drive, being filled with videos (MP4) of our recorded life experiences, with the additional “feature” of being able to extrapolate assumptions based on the stored information. However, some information “leaks” as years go by. It is unreliable.
A “normal” person will use those memories and information as a source of “knowledge” and apply it to unknown situations, by assuming that existing trends or past life experiences, will continue as they had. We use Life experiences, the past; to forecast the future and new situations. We can label that as “ thinking” or “reasoning” and feel safe; but notice that this process is as good as flipping a coin to make a “choice,” for truly Life is completely unexpected. The threads of Life situations escape our mental perception.
A person living in the “mind,” will believe that “he” (“I”) is the mind. When Life throws something “new,” then the mind will retrieve information and use that info as bona fide source of action.
Trusting only the contents of the mind is a superficial way to meet Life. There are 2 or more paths opening in our Life at the same time, which one do we follow? That could be a hard “decision.” We have been taught to weigh the “pros” against the “cons.” We are merely speculating. We don’t know. What is perceived as “bad” could be necessary in our Life path in order to grow; but our “reason” may not see that.
Thus, we can flip a coin and odds are the same as “thinking through it.” However, we will be hesitant to do it, for “thinking” gives the false sensation of having some control over circumstances. We are great believers of the mind.
The mind is a static mechanism meant to recall past experiences. There is no creativity in it. Through it we only perpetuate the “same old thing.” That is the false sensation of security that we embrace.
The mind wishes to understand Life. How could it be? A “machine” built to keep, process and understand only pictures and data will feel intimidated when a “real” movie of Life is in front. The mind takes a picture, analyzes it, dissects it and comes up with some theory as to how the next movie frame “should be.” Otherwise, it gets a disappointing feeling, even a bitter taste: A trauma is made. However if the forecast happens, then ego pops up until the upcoming “failure” brings it down.
Ironically and philosophically, we may conclude that “Life is a bitch and then we die.”
Understanding Life through the mind is futile. A picture cannot explain the movie. We are spinning our wheels without moving an inch. Life is not meant to be mentally understood but lived. Living is not of the mind, but we assimilate the experience by being observant, quiet which is the way to learn, without making mental conclusions and theories.
When we talk to someone we may hear words and only believe what comes out of her mouth. Those who have a bit more observation, know that the overall feeling, gestures and setting will give a better clue. That “knowing” cannot be put in a book in easy to understand “fool-proof ”steps for everyone to read and “apply.” That “knowing” is more accurate as it fits “reality.”
Tantra moves along those lines. It is the invitation to abandon the mind and its understanding, its signals; which only makes our moves in Life through the path of stored fears. Very predictable, that is lacking creativity.
The very wish to understand Life through the mind, creates the motion of our minds over our hearts.
We will not dare to OBSERVE the movie of ourselves quietly, while moving in Life. We will be content with a “selfie” and hang on to some belief about that picture, which at the end will be shattered when Life moves beyond that point.
Paradoxically, Life is understood without trying to understand it. That may be the only requisite. That understanding is not of the mind; thus, closer to “what is.”
I have been sharing some quotes from J. Krishnamurti for the past month.
I consider that J. Krishnamurti had deep insight into human nature and what we know as “spirituality.”
Krishnamurti transmits through his own words, a description of what is like to observe and experience from a different consciousness. Reading his words may bring agreement, it may bring intellectual understanding; but there is no practical change in consciousness that could be experienced by the reader.
In short, Krishnamurti truly expresses “truth,” but that is unreachable for those who do not share the same consciousness. That is why, Krishnamurti is not “practical” at all, for the immense majority.
It is important to understand that words cannot bring change in a person. I am not talking about change of behavior, which is superficial. I am speaking about “true” change which is consciousness.
Little Carlos may not hit his dog if he “understands,” that this is a “bad thing to do and that God will punish him.” The elements of moral standards and fear are there to induce change of behavior. However, Carlos’ violence is still there and he may not hit his dog anymore but he may hurt himself or others in different ways.
“Little Carlos’ consciousness” is the collective consciousness in society. The concern of the machinery of society is to change behavior through “practice,” or through “effort” to reach an objective. Religions operate in the same way.
Reading and understanding words in “spiritual” topics are only meant for us to look deeply at the self. To resonate with the words so they bring a different way to look at Life. Intellectual understanding is futile, for we will not be able to “put them in practice” in real Life; for Life is not a “recipe” that fits all. Life will bring “tailor made,” unique experiences in which we may not be able to recognize the words or the examples used by Krishnamurti, thus; we will not be able to “apply them” as we use a mathematical formula. Through that “practice,” we have no chance to know who we truly ARE.
Consciousness is gained through the experience of the “yes” and the “no.”
In a religious setting, I was taught to reject and suppress anger. Although my behavior was as if I had no anger in the eyes of others; due to the commending comments of those who observed my lack of reaction; I too believed that I was “anger free.”
To my surprise, I had plenty of anger inside stuck as emotional traumas which only needed a greater trigger to be displayed. Thus, “I tricked myself” for years.
Nevertheless, anger needed to be displayed so I could be free of it. Emotions will need to be displayed to be free from them. Through Observation of my own violence, anger diminished.
Through that full experience of anger and lack of it, a new consciousness appeared, which is now able to understand anger without rejection. I could not learn that by simply thinking: “Anger is bad. Don’t show it” or by believing that “God was going to punish me for being angry,” or by reading Krishnamurti’s words about anger and having a solid intellectual understanding of what those words meant.
Change of consciousness occurs when we assimilate Life experiences while we are AWARE of it. Without awareness there is repetition of experiences and through that vicious repetitive cycle, a dull feeling of bitterness mixed with apathy until a compulsive need to change occurs through the experience of suffering.
The “good news” is that eventually we will change; not because we understood some “words of wisdom,” but because Life will give us the complete experience. The “yes” and the “no,” that is a new consciousness.
It is said that the Amazon forest is the “Lungs of the World” for more than 20% of the world oxygen is produced there.
It is known the importance to preserve the Amazon forest, to help with Global warming issues. Nevertheless, human greed and negligence are again the cause of problems for the living entities in the world and for our “future generations”.
Why are humans burning the amazon? To clear out land for cattle and sell the meat for profit. To use lumber for profit. The world knows that. There is an interesting article by CNN explaining this.
The blame game started. Who is the culprit? Ahh! The Brazilian president for allowing that burning.
Let us look deeper. Isn’t economics the most important thing in our society? Isn’t the game of economics about “supply and demand”? It is said that Brazil was the largest exporter of meat last year (2018) in the world. There is a demand thus, Brazil supplies.
“But the Brazilian president should have fought against local farmers, meat producing corporations and international meat traders and think about how not to endanger our world!”
That is a high expectation for just a politician, who is not “trained” to look out for the common good and who believes to be acting for “Brazilian interest”. For him this is “an internal problem” not a World issue, for things are happening in Brazil. For him, it is no one else business. If there is demand, there will be supply and economic growth in Brazil… Isn’t that what we learn in business?
Ahh! Those countries importing Brazilian meat are the underlying problem. Hong Kong and China are by far, the ones who import the most from Brazil! They should stop importing Brazilian meat to save the forests!
However, “China’s average consumption per person is still well below the world average (and six times smaller than the US) and its growth rate is slowing,” (https://edition.cnn.com/2018/12/11/health/the-beef-with-beef/index.html )
Some will even say that the “problem” is that “we eat too much meat”, as the CNN article explicitly implies.
What is too much meat for a person? Who is there to stop someone from buying when there is supply?
Demand means people. More people conditioned for generations through an old carnivorous tradition. No one looks at the number of humans in the planet.
We are too many. We increase our human population and diminish natural resources to support the whims and fancies of the “market.” It is a vicious cycle ultimately damaging our own living conditions. It is the dog chasing its own tail, but this is a crazy dog: It caught it and is angrily chewing it, and being numb to this.
It is very unlikely that humans will stop reproducing themselves in a considerable way to “save the planet.” Most want children to unwillingly offer them a depleted, competitive madhouse for their future.
It is very unlikely that humans will stop eating meat in a considerable way to “save the planet,” even though this may be the single best action to “help.” As a matter of fact for the majority, “saving the planet” is not a concrete thing. It is not something that they could see right now. It is not like seeing 100 US dollars in your pocket after selling a widget, even if that harms the planet.
For most, “help” is to write a check to some entity which supposedly will “fight” to save the rain forest. That is the conditioning. This will make most feel good about themselves. The comfort zone is a tremendous obstacle to overcome by the majority. Easier to write a check than to stop eating meat.
We are all one, even if we don’t see it.
There are no “real” lines delimiting countries. We are all humans. This world is not just for humans. We forget that.
In Life there is a continuous tendency to reach balance. Life knows that. We don’t.
If humans destroy the planet, there will be a consequence for humans. It comes to mind: “Forgive them for they do not know what they do”. But forgiveness is human. In Life, there is cause and effect.
In Human history, there have been wars, diseases, famine, natural disasters etc. Hardship for humans at particular key times in history, which diminish human population.
That is the balancing act of Life just to preserve itself. Humans themselves play a role in that balancing act, unknowingly due to their deep unconsciousness.
Yet some want to “pray to God” to avoid this from happening? How naive we could be!
So where is the “Spiritual” part of this writing?
While in this madness act to support Life; the common good, however you perceive it.
Trust in Life, for many cannot perceive that we ARE this planet. They are in a deep sleep.
Keep in mind that while politicians debate, and most get angry and do superfluous activities just to feel good about themselves; Life has its own way to deal with this.
Do not be surprised. It is not a human way.
But, it is human to feel compassion for ourselves. This is a good time for this.
Everyone has its share of sorrow in Life. Why?
Because everyone as well, has its share of joy. Duality.
To answer “Why” doesn’t give any comfort, when we deal with emotions in Life. A “why/because” answer is useless, for there is no way to avoid or to “tackle the problem”. We need to go through the whole experience.
There is the type of sorrow and joy which “happen to us” due to circumstances. “I feel sorrow/joyful because…” Those are the types where duality manifests.
Also, there is a kind of “joy” which is the expression of BEING. That one is little known by most. Duality does not affect it. We usually cannot feel it for we have other garments covering it: Emotional traumas.
Observe our typical Joy. Like anything in Life, it is a transient state.
An episode of sorrow, precedes Joy. They follow each other.
The “answer” to go beyond that duality is right in the middle, between that duality; between the yin and yang. However, to experience that balance, that equanimity, may take many other experiences to center our consciousness to feel that equilibrium. It is a feeling.
Experiencing Life with impartiality, is key to ride the ups and downs in Life.
Impartiality is not a “practice”. That equilibrium is cumulative, as we are able to assimilate different Life experiences: Joyful, sorrowful or in between, all included without distinction. With some we laugh, others cry. Smile. That is the middle.
Impartiality has been known as the “Middle Way”, for it is the middle between dualities; however, typically that is understood in a different way.
Sorrow may remain despite the ending of the situation causing it, for “I” will keep the memory of that incident as a traumatic experience. Fear will be born, and that weight will be with “me” as long as “I” live, unless “I” release that emotion.
Unavoidably, there will be the experience of sorrow in Life. Sorrow is meant to change a person through a new perspective of Life. No intellectual understanding can ever do that.
It doesn’t matter whether those perspectives are “true or false.” What matters is the imminent change in consciousness once we cross the obscure passage. Change upon change, eventually we will learn to see the “mirror” rather than the outside perception of an episode. However, the trauma may remain. We still need to clean the slate, dissolve the emotion.
Life will bring a way to free ourselves from past traumas as long as we are aware of them, acknowledge them and be willing to open up. In this way, every Life experience will increase our maturity, our insight; and that will bring us closer to that state of impartiality where dualities are experienced, but there is no traumatic footprint inside. The Middle way.
While living Life, we may learn to witness it without unneeded commentaries coming from the mind.
That creates the perfect soil for inner joy, the type of “inner smile” untouched by the dualities of Life.