A religious person is someone who has built an ego.
His belief, the religion he represents, his behavior are representations of an ideal. That defined ideal is significative for the presence of ego.
It is the same scenario for a “mundane” employee of company “XYZ.” As long as there is identification with that company, there will be ego.
There is nothing wrong with defending something we believe in, but the keyword to note is IDENTIFIED with that which we believe in.
For instance, I could believe in Christian teachings, but if I am willing to fight and kill, to give my life for a belief, that is extreme identification, extreme ego. We may praise those as “saints,” but that is just extreme ego. “I am a Christian.” That is ego.
A “spiritual” person cannot define himself with a belief, a religion, a tradition. Otherwise, his views are narrowed down to HIS beliefs. That is ego.
Similarly, a seeker who wants to “find” God, is merely trying to fulfill his ego.
How is that?
Why would someone want to find God?
To be saved? To go to paradise? To become “special”? To get favors from him? To be taught by him, so this seeker can teach others?
All of those things are just ego trips… but nothing wrong with that. 🙂
A seeker wanting an “experience” with God, with cloud nine and its blissful purple golden light… so he can feel “special,” a “chosen one” is pampering his ego. That seeker will be happy with that experience, for he will feel “unique, special, a selected one.”
That is exactly what ego needs to survive, to become bigger.
A “true” seeker is not searching for “experiences” that he can talk about to others. A “true seeker” is only looking to find himself.
That is the search that a seeker cannot talk about. That search will not make him “special” under anyone’s eyes.
When a religion has a belief system which claims to be the “truth,” there will be another belief system with opposite beliefs which will claim to be the “truth” as well.
Paradoxically, because they are opposite, both are truth.
Because the Totality entails everything, the “yes and the no.”
That is why, a partial belief system wanting to embrace only one side of the duality, is not really teaching the “truth” but is merely a method for the follower to find his own truth.
How? When you identify yourself with one side of a duality, you will need to be aware of your rejection of the other side. That rejection creates ego. If you are not AWARE of that ego, you will not know what ego is. You will only have concepts, definitions; that is another way to distract your awareness.
That is why, at the end of the road, religions, philosophies, and gurus do not matter as source of “truth,” but as methods for inner search.
Some may think: “When the ego searches for God, that will be a failure, right?”
No. It will be a necessary experience for the ego to increase its size until is ready to blow up, to be torn apart through the experience of surrendering that ego.
Why do you write so much about ego?
Because happiness, love, compassion, surrendering, joy and gratitude are only pretty words used in some political/religious talk, without any meaning until ego is confronted.
Most are lost in beliefs, worship, rituals and traditions hoping to get “heaven” or some other “golden star in their chart” when they die. They are not aware of their ego minds, they are not aware that unless the “I” disappears, there cannot be that “divinity” that they are searching for.
In a nutshell, “God” is always there, but you cannot be in communion with Him, because “You” are there.
When we are empty and not full of ourselves, we may discover it.
When we look at the immensity of the firmament in a night with no light
Just to see a far away star, through darkness, distance and time;
Behold! That is what makes the heart alive, joyous and fine.
The star may be unreachable to the physical hands, but the spontaneous feeling in the presence of that light, is enough to fuel and ignite the strength of our own might.
Love is the force igniting all lights through the recognition of our own nature.
Just like God, the inspiration is the star; but the task is to find our own light.
We are all candles.
A candle has no light, until love touches its heart.
That flame becomes a light on Earth, just as the one living up in the sky.
Darkness, distance and time, become the villains to overcome. But all it takes is an ignited light.
A candle refrains to be ignited. The fear to be burnt alive is the mental pain and illusion stretching the distance of the path.
Until the candle recognizes its nature, which is to give light.
Love is that light sharing brightness and warmth to all close by.
That light is just like the one of the star.
What is darkness, if not the opportunity to be bright?
But…How to overcome distance and time between the candle and the star?
Lighten up. 🙂
If we are love, we are empty. The path is to become empty, from the fullness of the “I.”
An ignited “I” is an empty “I.”
It is through that emptiness that we could recognize our own light.
Acknowledge the “I” fully, just to abandon it.
Find the “I” just to leave it behind.
Embrace that “I” just to let it go by.
It takes pure love, pure light to walk the path, of waving hello just to say good-bye.
A room full of things is like a person full of “I.”
Those things, boxes, plastic bags, etc. get accumulated through time.
Not every thing in the room has the same value for that “I.”
Some things have greater priority. According to that, a personality will be built.
The “I” is trying to keep everything under its 4 walls. Failing to see that those things that make up a full room now, got there not by the powers of the “I” but by coincidences, “random events,” situations, circumstances, which are the settings beyond the 4 walls of the room.
Those things got into the room through “others.” To see this is to understand inter-beingness.
Every box in the room has collaborated to make a person known as “me.”
Who made it?
Most think that the “I” will make himself through “choices,” but the choices that arrive are not dependent on that “I.”
Your “choice” is either red or blue. A person who does not know about yellow, green, magenta, etc. will believe of making a “choice” out of only 2 colors appearing in his Life, red or blue.
“I picked my husband.” Meaning, your choice was red or blue. Those are the colors that appeared in your experience of Life. To say “I picked” is not completely true. Your choices were limited. Your timing did not depend on the “I.”
“That blue box over there, is something which I like a lot. I will not allow it to go.”
However, it will go away. It is just a matter of time.
While the box is being moved out of the room, there will be drama, struggle, fight, animosity, fear, anger, etc. After all the “blue box” is going away!
After awhile, the “blue box” is no longer there, but in that empty space now, there is an emotion holding the phantom of the loss of the “blue box.”
Even though Life is cleaning the space of that full room for newness to appear, the “I” is struggling to keep things static “forever.” 🙂
The “I” may hear many talks about how “good” is to be detached from all of those boxes but once Life takes away another box from that room, the “I” will cry in despair.
The box is gone! …But an emotion takes its place.
As the room becomes empty of things, it does not matter how religious or how saintly someone may believe to be. The room may be empty of things, as many saints may claim: “ I do not have anything. I am not attached to no one.” However, the ghosts of emotions are taking the place of those objects.
That room is not empty yet. It is full of ghosts. Self-deception is one of them.
As Life removes things from the room, we may replace those objects with different ones; we may decorate that room with newness, with creativity… but we don’t.
We cling to the old stuff.
That is how to flush the emotions is truly necessary in the process of becoming a new person in Life.
Emotions are like the odor left by the previous tenants of an apartment. That odor will spread through all new objects in the room.
To be born again is to be empty, completely healed. Ready for newness.
“All that you are is the result of all that you have thought,” I hear.
That is not true. All that you are depends on the identification with the elements coming into that empty room.
Identifying with one, surely creates a “recurrent energy,” a recurrent thought.
“But… where do you read this? Who gives you this knowledge?”
Life itself. We are not separated from it.
Once we start our “spiritual” search, the “I” is a pretty strong fellow.
The “I” is always innocent. The problem is with the “others.”
Blame to “others” will arrive as events are not happening the way we want it, or the way they “should.”
After some experience of suffering, we may be willing to see Life from a different perspective; then our search for answers may take us to the opposite view:
The problem is with “Me.”
Welcome to your new “spirituality.”
What a shift, huh?
In awareness, we could observe how we go from one extreme into another. Yes, it is the “Black or White” mentality.
What makes that change?
Again, typically is the experience of unbearable pain, sorrow.
The greater is the extent of that “I,” the greatest suffering will be experienced to break that “I” apart.
For example, jumping from one relationship into another due to the feeling of pain, we may search for the psychologist, the priest, the holy one as a desperate attempt to find “answers,” just to hear the same song: “The problem is you.”
At that point we may shift the blame game and we become the victim and the perpetrator at the same time.
We need “healing.”
Do we see the game?
If we understand this Guilt/Blame game and we could see how guilt arrives, then could we say that feeling guilty is “real”?
Yes and No.
Yes, we can feel it even though it is a ghost.
We created that phantom based in our upbringing while being surrounded by players of the “blame game.”
The blame/guilt game is continually reinforced in our society, our beliefs and values. We may become paranoid of doing some action as that may bring guilt/blame.
Perhaps the above is crystal clear for some. Even though it may be understood intellectually; when the time comes and Life throws a particular experience at us, we will not remember what we theoretically “know.”
Moreover, even if we read this article 1000 times; it will not help us to deal with the surprising “test” from Life.
Because our emotions are the ones affected and our emotions are not interested in intellectual stuff.
Do we see that?
What is the solution?
Become aware of the emotion and release it. Let it go.
How that happens?
That is our personal path.
Releasing a particular emotional energy at one time such as feeling guilty, does not mean that the guilt/blame game will not recur again in a different form, a different way. That is known as a “recurrent energy.”
We may need to observe what is happening in ourselves and allow for those emotions to dissolve by itself through our own feeling of openness to “others.” It is in our relationship with “others” how we know if a recurrent energy is affecting us or not. If it has been healed or not.
Observe how the emotion of anger or fear comes in. Feel how those energies will be used against ourselves, in our every day activities, which in turn will sabotage what we truly want for ourselves in Life.
We will become our own enemy, not the “other.”
Allow yourself to be vulnerable and not defensive. Observe the process and be mindful of the time needed for healing to occur by itself. If you close doors that come to help you, suffering will be extended.
Life has different ways to extend that help. Take it and do not judge it.
Openness is the key for our perception of reality to change.
That is known as forgiveness.
To forgive yourself and to forgive others, is perceived as 2 different things in the “normal,” spiritual/religious use of the word.
In reality, it is only a childish lesson to strengthen the existence of the “I.”
“I am so good. I am forgiving you.” Observe how insane is for you to divide yourself into 2 so you can forgive yourself.
Allow for a different perception of Life to sink in. That is all. Forgiveness is to allow for a different perception to appear in your consciousness.
Openness happens when there is an empty space in us available for newness to arrive.
We need that emptiness. We are emptiness.
That “seat” becomes empty, because an emotion /belief was released.
That may be the whole magic behind the word “healing.” It is the process to emptiness.
“Rich is a very proud individual. He is very arrogant.”
That is a judgment.
In my mind from now on, Rich is equivalent to arrogant and proud.
In my heart, when I see Rich I will have developed “antibodies” towards him.
“Here is the proud and arrogant individual.” Those words are not thought, they are “unconscious” but our emotions will show exactly what we “think,” or rather feel.
In my inner observation, my pristine feelings will be colored by a heavy sensation, which will add up to the cloudy and foggy heaviness of interpreting and judging the participation of “others” in my life.
“Carl insinuated that I am dumb.”
“Rebecca didn’t show respect for me.”
All of those words bring certain quality of feelings, which accumulate in our beings.
At the end of the day, that becomes the way we perceive the world.
“This world is full of arrogant people. We cannot trust them because it may be a hurtful interaction.”
“I interpreted that he had ulterior motives.”
Suspicion appears and with that a new attitude towards life: “I am afraid. Everyone wants something from me.”
That is why it is said, that what is outside is inside; however as our perception refines, we could observe that there is no difference between the outside and the inside.
Do you perceive hate in the environment that you are in?
OK. It will go away if you become an open, empty door. Otherwise, it will be trapped in you.
Because the “I” will have an exact fit for that emotion, if that “I” is made from the same “material.”
Jealousy attracts jealousy. We are all one. The mirror of the world is showing “me” though others. Rather than thanking that “other” for the lesson, we crucify that “other” to protect the always innocent “me.”
Any worthwhile spirituality out there will go into this with different words.
If you are empty, you will not get trapped with a particular emotion or sensation. It will go through you.
If you recognize that sensation or emotion as “good or bad” automatically, you will be trapped in it.
Your moral values have done the judgment.
What do you mean by trapped?
John insulted Sue in a moment of desperation.
Sue accepted the words from John and identified with them. Those words were against Sue’s own image. That was an insult!
Sue reacted and insulted John back.
The back and forward shows the distress of 2 egos hoping to win the war.
Bothe egos are trapped into each other, until the next match.
John will say to his friends: “ Sue is such an …”
Sue will use a similar word to describe John to her friends.
The label used is the tool needed to gain support, to be “right.”
“John is such an idiot.”
Stupidity becomes a synonym with the label, John.
The cloudy, foggy sensation invades our pristine feelings and little by little, a wall is built to protect what we perceive to be “Me.” An Armor is born.
The armor is built through Life experiences of protecting that “I.”
One of the most emotional painful experiences a Life walker could feel, is when he is ready to take the armor off. That takes guts, courage and lots of patience.
That is the process of openness into trusting Life again.
Some write: “That is a special widget.” Others may write: “That is an especial widget.”
Who is right? Who is wrong? 🙂
Some may say that “special” is the same as “especial.” Others may say that “especial” is “specially special.”
That is the same with emptiness and silence. What monotheistic religions may call as “silence” is what non-deistic religions may call as “emptiness.”
When we become caught up in the words, we miss the experience that those words are trying to convey. Lost in words we may open a “discussion forum” to bring those “concepts” forward, without having the experience of what “holy people” and “sages” are trying to convey through dualistic words.
Have you felt emptiness as an ache in the chest? Have you tried to get away from that sensation of despair of “feeling empty”?
That is a sign that something is transforming. Any process of transformation requires the feeling of emptiness, but not so we run away from it or become “busy” by ignoring it; but to observe it and use that empty space to create new things.
This is what a sage calls: “Creative emptiness.”
The room was full of stuff. To transform it is to empty it. Once it is empty, then we can start decorating it, creating new things.
Being creative means to create from emptiness. Otherwise, we are just continuing a known theme.
Many readers may not understand some of the things being shared here. These readers may “study” these words for hours, they may have all their attention into these writings and are willing to understand them… These readers are pretty intelligent as well… How is it possible for them not to understand these things?
Because they may need to have am empty space in themselves so, these things could settle down.
How is that?
Have you ever been 100% in a religious belief? Have you ever been completely dedicated to a cause?
The room is 100% full. There is no empty space there to hold anything else… anything new. All we recycle is the same thing. The same dogma.
That is how when the stuff goes out of the windows and doors of that room, when we realize about becoming obsessive. A feeling of emptiness arrives and then… we kill it by distracting ourselves… by becoming “busy.” 🙂
When we step away and allow for some empty space, then something else could be understood. Therefore, to be empty is a requisite to understand beyond a superficial game of words or “concepts.”
Many times if we have an empty space and still we are unable to understand, the time will come when a particular experience will allow us to understand. It is a matter of timing.
That understanding is non-conceptual for it is part of our being.
That is why it is said that when we are completely empty, we are everything. That is the paradox of being and non-being.
Do we want to call that silence?
That is fine.
Is that silence an absence of words? No.
Is that silence and absence of thoughts? No.
Is that silence a feeling like peace? No.
That silence is an empty (silent) space in the room of the being. Unlearning has occurred and with that, the magic of transforming.
As thoughts let their space for feelings to arrive, that silence is no longer an experience to talk about.
It may become a room full of grateful feelings… but empty at the same time.
The practical aspect of finding emptiness, voidness or any other label to describe the absence of existence of the “I” could be an experience which could start our search for meaning.
It is no longer about God who is going to help “me,” because there is no “me” in that experience.
As Steve Jobs mentioned:” Everyone wants to go to Paradise, but no one wants to die.”
That paradox is something to keep in our minds and prayers, for that speaks loudly about our own honesty.
Every time we go to sleep, there is that emptiness waiting for us. Have you noticed it? That is the emptiness, which fills the self, the “I” with fear.
The body and the mind calls for that experience of “rest,” as if someone gives us an injection with anesthesia, then we fall sleep. We “rest in peace.” 🙂
However, when the “I” fights that natural experience, then struggle will be experienced along with suffering.
When we wake up, there may be an instant when consciousness is but not a role. The role, the “this is me, don’t you remember?” happens in less than a second after that. We could not remember who we are, that is the personality; but the feeling of being there…. of existing without doubt, will be there whether we remember who we were or not.
Mathias, the wise tree; was speaking with Ananda about sending feelings from the heart as a way to “help” the Totality.
Mathias: “When you send your feelings to the Totality that also has an effect on a particular person. If there is an expectation or a grudge inside you, that becomes a wall which diminishes the strength of the feelings being sent. Become empty.”
Ananda: “Friend, I used to feel that emptiness that many are afraid of, but it is gone now. However, I cannot point out a particular practice or thing which has accomplished that.”
Mathias: “ It is not a particular thing you have done. It happens when it is the time. Buddha or Jesus did not write any books about it, because they did not have anything to write about that experience.”
Ananda: “But the followers without the experience, wrote about that experience.”
Mathias: “ You said it.”
At the end of the road, when we have experienced every religion there is and read about every philosophy that exists, we could be full of beliefs until the final moment… but when fear of not being is transformed into embracing the experience of being who we are, then emptiness is no longer something to fear.
Once we know ourselves; there is nothing to fear.
The above sentence will be misunderstood or not understood by those without the experience.
The drop of the water is the Ocean itself, but when the drop believes about being a drop and not the Ocean; there is fear of not existing.