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Had a tiny epiphany this morning listening to Carse on the treadmill.  The reading I did of Plotinus (which I need to recapture) kept focusing on something like “don’t bother to try to spend energy in this shadow world, but focus in the real world of the mind” or some such.  Carse was talking about the dream and I was thinking about “all that is” getting to experience its dream of life though the “mind/body thing” that I think I am. And just a tiny bit shifted into a realization that my experience/life was a reflection of an intentional dream of “all that is” to be here and that I am that intention to experience “just this.”  Just this. And maybe if I stay “just here” “all that is” can play with the dream as it is becoming.

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That’s one of my visions—-a steel file grinding away about all of the cruft of ego. Chip, chip, chip. Big bits; little bits. Crusty bits. Glue. Far from polishing…grinding, grinding away.

Did “okay” on a day that was challenging….team celebrating their success that didn’t really include us, though we were there. But they’ve tried hard and done pretty well. But needing to remember that there is no them, no us, no one there. We are part of something that is trying to become something…one way or another. That something doesn’t care who is happy or hurt. We are just pieces of the arising potential trying to make new (who knows what) possible.

How to get started?

My practice approaches have become such a big part of my day—study, contemplation, and a little meditation, but lots of observation: What is happening in my consciousness and when is it contrary to they way I should be. When is it pulling me away from “being” and when is in pulling me back into the center. I have even create myself a “game board” which identifies the positive and negative elements and behaviors that are relative to me right now.

What are the goals?

  • To feel aligned and happy in every moment because it feels good, but also because all teachings tell us that the state of “happiness” is the state of alignment with truth–is really who you are. Any feeling that is not happiness is some form of resistance.
  • To be aligned with what is happening because the core teachings also teach or imply that this alignment puts one in touch with what is really happening and gives one the best opportunity to actually engage in creativity in the world. If nothing else, I want to experience this as truth, because it has profound implications about our ability to “relax” into life. Imagine if Ramana Marharshi is right when he says that “no effort” is required for your to play your part; that the only choice you can/need make is to remove the ego and experience the Self. Everything else will take care of itself no matter haw much you suffer or accept. You will still do your part.
It begins with what I’ve come to understand as the paradigms that actually help me. I’ve come to the point that nothing totally abstract is interesting to me, because it’s the daily state of existence that I am after. I am stripping out any viewpoints or techniques that don’t actually address the challenges (Buddhist defilements) that I experience. When and how and why does my consciousness move away from being centered in presence (as centered as I get) and what techniques work for me in actual fact.

The Key Precepts for Me (In several parts…)

Shutting down the Ego (it’s negative aspects at first; later–the whole shebang)
  • The insights of J Bolte Taylor about her experience of living in the right brain (where she experiences “enlightenment”/freedom), her experience of having the left brain come back on line causing all of the pain and challenges she experienced before the stroke, and her ability to choose which of those neural circuits were useful to her as she recalibrated her brain. This reflects the effects of tradition meditation training and a whole slew of Buddhist mind training practices to quiet the “mind”. She came to understand that the circuits in the left brain constitute that ego that we are taught to remove from our behaviors. It also reinforces that those bad habits of thought that keep us awake are not us, but just errant processing loops that we have reinforced over time to be powerful enough to take us over.
  • The brain science studies of OCD which describe habitual compulsions as errant brain circuits in the brain. I have come to understand that belief structures, negative egoic reactions and habits, even the existent-self belief structures of the ego as being these errant left-brain operational loops. Freedom (from the pain of the ego) comes from shutting down those errant processing loops. Also reflected in traditional training.
More another time: Enhancing the the Experience/Knowledge of Source/Presence/Truth (strengthening the “right” brain): Abraham, Plotinus, Ramana Maharshi

I have been thinking a long while about starting a conversation with myself about my personal studies and practices. This is the start. Let’s see where it goes before I invite anyone else in.