Thursday, December 30, 2010

. . . You Must Become as a Little Child

In his "Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood." William Wordsworth penned the famous lines that describe the "knowing" of childhood which we lose as we grow older:
" . . . Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting.
The soul that rises with us, our life's Star,
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
And cometh from afar.
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come,
From God who is our home. "
In the Gospels, J, said that you have to become as a little child before you can enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; the Kingdom of Heaven that "is within you." (John 17:21). We cannot bring the adult "ego" with us when we go within.

Poetic Words on Our Expansive Universe

This poem was inspired by a selection (appended to the bottom of this post ) from Tzvi Freeman's "Bringing Heaven Down to Earth," a compendium of the teachings of the Seventh Lubavitcher Rebbe:

                As Earth to Sun,
and Sun to Milky Way,
so galaxies in clusters
spin outward from their origin,
from that primordial Word
of which all heavenly threads are spun.
                 And from these filaments,
these matted skeins of stars,
even planes of  Light shine forth,
uniform and translucent,
that are God' thoughts and Mind.
It is in this Light we live, and move,
and have our being.

                 And when the Sun shines full upon the Earth,
to light both eyes and consciousness,
we clearly see the power of G_d
and feel His touch upon our skin.

                 With the passage of the Sun 'cross the heavens
the illusion of Time is born,
for now we can only know in part.
                 But when the Sun's light wanes
to reveal the night's panoply
of slowly wheeling stellar arms
that sweep across its sky,
our minds perceive the Depth of G_d
in which our Being merely is.
               - Bhuddini -
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *  *

Here (as promised) is the passage from Tzvi Freeman (as inspired by the Seventh Lubavitcher Rebbe) which sparked the composition of the poem, above:

"Einstein received acclaim for demonstrating that energy and matter are one. The scientist who demonstrates how all forces are one in a unified theory will receive even greater acclaim. So, since we all agree that someone will eventually establish this, why not accept it right now and call it G_d?"

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Mystic Experience and The Environment

I found this gem of insight by Alan Watts, undeniably one of the brightest lights of the twentieth century - a pioneering psychonaut, a Zen master, and lecturer on Indian and Chinese philosophy - on one of my favourite Internet repositories:

It is Watt's opening line from a collection of "Lectures and Essays" available here:

"Inability to accept the mystic experience is more than an intellectual handicap. Lack of awareness of the basic unity of organism and environment is a serious and dangerous hallucination. For in a civilization equipped with immense technological power, the sense of alienation between man and nature leads to the use of technology in a hostile spirit---to the "conquest" of nature instead of intelligent co-operation with nature." (Alan Watts, from Psychedelics and Religious Experiences.) 

Watts held a Master's Degree in Theology, and Doctorate of Divinity.  He never practiced as the Church of England minister he had trained for, delving instead into the practice of Zen Buddhism and the study of Eastern Wisdom Traditions.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Ego - "My Own Small Self"

In "Who Is This?", a poem oft-quoted by spiritual teacher and author, Wayne Dyer, the great Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore faces down the ego, calling it "my own small self":

Who is This?
I came out alone on my way to my tryst.
But who is this that follows me in the silent dark?
I move aside to avoid his presence but I escape him not.
He makes the dust rise from the earth with his swagger;
he adds his loud voice to every word that I utter.
He is my own little self, my lord, he knows no shame;
but I am ashamed to come to thy door in his company.

 "Who Is This? is from Tagore's "Gitanjali", an unparalleled collection of poems and odes to man's higher self, the "Friend", or God.  Tagore won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913 for the "Gitanjali", the first writer from the Indian sub-continent to do so.  William Butler Yeats, the great Irish poet, wrote an introduction to Tagore's renowned collection of poems. Wayne Dyer's interpretation of "Who Is This?" can be found in his book, Wisdom of the Ages60 Dys to Enlightenment, a wonderful collection of essays for the spiritual seeker.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Andrew Cohen's Teaching: Evolutionary Enlightenment

Andrew Cohen, spiritual teacher and founder of EnlightenNext magazine, describes his teaching of "Evolutionary Enlightenment", as follows:

"Traditional enlightenment is what I learned from my teacher, but Evolutionary Enlightenment is what I have discovered and created in my own work over the last almost quarter of a century. During this time, I have discovered a new source of emotional, psychological, and spiritual liberation that easily exists within anyone’s reach, anyone who has the eyes to recognize it and the heart to desire it. To put it simply, enlightenment is evolving. It is no longer found only in the bliss of timeless Being; it is found also in the ecstatic urgency of evolutionary Becoming."

Cohen, commenting on The Momentum of Karma, has the following to say about the individual's responsibility to evolve his or her own consciosness:

Unless a moment comes in your own evolution when you are willing to take responsibility for all of your past, without conditions, no matter what the implications, the karmic momentum will not come to an end. If you don’t stop it, it will continue. It always does. And that momentum will inevitably determine your choices and ultimately, your destiny.  

Evolution, Karma and The Fourth Way

Karma - the universal law of cause and effect - ensures the one constant we know: the constant evolution of change.  Ouspensky observes the following in his book, The Fourth Way, at page 9:

The evolution of man, if it occurs, can only bethe result of knowledge and effort; as long as man knows only what he can know in the ordinary way, there is no evolution for him and there never was any evolution for him.

One of the early 20th century, Ouspensky's teaching, above, reflects the evolutionary enlightenment taught by modern spiritual teacher, Andrew Cohen.

Thought and Love

The late, great spiritual teacher, Jiddu Krishnamurti, writes of how thinking and love are antithetical entities or processes:

"THOUGHT WITH ITS emotional and sensational content, is not love. Thought invariably denies love. Thought is founded on memory, and love is not memory. When you think about someone you love, that thought is not love. You may recall a friend’s habits, manners idiosyncrasies, and think of pleasant or unpleasant incidents in your relationship with that person, but the pictures which thought evokes are not love. By its very nature, thought is separative. The sense of time and space, of separation and sorrow, is born of the process of thought, and it is only when the thought process ceases that there can be love."

The above quotation is from Volume 1 of Krishnamurti's Commentaries on Living, at page 6, which is available online at