Here it is!

Almost anything, from alpha to omega.
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zoofence
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Here it is!

Postby zoofence » February 21st, 2008, 4:08 pm

Last evening I came across a few lines in Nisargadatta's I Am That which I repeat below for the clarity with which they express what the spiritual process is all about. I don't see how it can get much clearer than this.

The passage is preceded by a consideration of the human personality, to which a questioner asks, "If the person is so unimportant, why be so concerned with its welfare? Who cares for a shadow?"

Nisargadatta replies, You have brought in duality where there is none. There is the body, and there is the Self. Between them is the
mind, in which the Self is reflected as "I am". Because of the imperfections of the mind, its crudity and restlessness, lack of discernment and insight, it takes itself to be the body, not the Self. All that is needed is to purify the mind so that it can realize its identity with the Self. When the mind merges in the Self, the body presents no problems. It remains what it is, an instrument of cognition and action, the tool and the expression of the creative fire within. The ultimate value of the body is that it serves to discover the cosmic body, which is the universe in its entirety. As you realize yourself in manifestation, you keep on discovering that you are ever more than what you have imagined.


As I have written here often, one of my "if only one book on a desert island" titles is this book. It seems not to matter how often I read from it (and it is very often), it is always first-time fresh, which is all the Open Forummore extraordinary considering that it was not written by the Teacher, but rather is a transcription of public meetings with him AND that he was not speaking in English, meaning that what we have is a translation of his words. But none of that diminishes its potency one whit. Anyway, please read that paragraph a few times slowly, visualize the image he draws, and then sit quietly with the words and the image in your head. It will clarify.

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Re: Here it is!

Postby jenjulian » February 22nd, 2008, 12:49 am

"I am what I am."--Popeye

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Re: Here it is!

Postby W4TVQ » February 22nd, 2008, 1:04 pm

ACIM's way of saying this is to say, "the body is a means of communication." And that it has no other function.

Likewise, Ruby Nelson's passages concerning the "Grand Cosmic Being" that emerges when the body ceases to be necessary.

And, of course, Jesus' own parables describing the "earth-plane" self as a seed, to be discarded when the pattern which it contains for that "grand cosmic being" emerges and is realized fully. In His case, it seems to me that that was the mesge of the Ascension: "Okay, this body has served its purpose, now let's transcend it entirely."

No matter where one turns in the continuing search for Light, one comes upon the very same teaching. It's in the upanishads, and in the words of the Buddha, and I even encountered it in Wiccan thought. It is exemplified in Life and Teachings of the Masters of the Far East.

Namaste
Art
"I can at best report only from my own wilderness. The important thing is that each man possess such a wilderness and that he consider what marvels are to be observed there." -- Loren Eiseley

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Re: Here it is!

Postby zoofence » February 22nd, 2008, 5:56 pm

jenjulian, What a great link! Thanks. I have added it to TZF's My Space feature.

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Re: Here it is!

Postby jenjulian » February 22nd, 2008, 9:36 pm

A husky dog that lives in our home ate most of my hard copy of I Am That. It was sitting here, waiting until I was ready for it, and Duke decided it had sat too long, ate both covers, and the beginning and the end of it... :wink: I'm actually getting through it easier online, don't know why...
If he starts chewing on my laptop, don't know what I shall do next...
I think it is a great gem of a website too.
"I am what I am."--Popeye

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Speculum
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Re: Here it is!

Postby Speculum » February 25th, 2008, 12:23 am

ACIM's way of saying this is to say, "the body is a means of communication." And that it has no other function.


Yes, but expanding upon that, my experience confirms Nisargadatta's point that "The ultimate value of the body is that it serves to discover the cosmic body, which is the universe in its entirety".

As I have written here and elsewhere, I am convinced -- from my own observations and experience, and from the simple application of Logic -- that when the Gospels Teacher said of bread and wine, "This is my body, this is my wine", he meant not just bread and wine, but potatoes and water, books and chairs, rocks and trees, planets and clouds, ideas and rivers. In a word, the universe. "What you see, what you smell, what you touch, what you hear, is Me, the very One, your very Self. Do not limit your looking for Me to your churches, temples, and synagogues, for I am every Thing every Where. Look for Me, hear Me, touch Me, all day every day."

Converting the sense of "I am that" from the physical body ("I am Stefan, and you aren't Stefan") to the Entirety ("I Am That") is made possible by the body. It is our having mistakenly identified solely with the physical body which we seem to be inhabiting that has prompted us, enabled us, propelled us, to understand the problem, and correct it.

Thus, as ACIM writes, the body is a means of communication, but communication with what? With other bodies. Relationship. And it is the inner evolution of that sense of relationship that eventually points us skyward, lifts us beyond "me".

The physical body -- Divine mechanism that it is -- is at once our bane and our release.

Great God Almighty, what an extraordinary Universe this is!




jenjulian, I love that husky dog. He knows nourishment when he finds it!
"The only real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust

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Re: Here it is!

Postby jenjulian » February 26th, 2008, 5:34 am

I'm not sure I'm understanding this conversation completely, but it seems to be along the same line as what Martin Buber writes of in his book I/Thou. Everything is realtionship. When we have authentic meeting with the world, whether another person or an animal or something in nature (even an inanimate object, which I'm not there yet) we can approach it as an I/it relation where we see separatness and this turns it into a subject/object relationship. For if we are separate, then the subject must have its object.
But, when we have an authentic meeting or relationship with the world, then it is the I/Thou, which is subject to subject. The fact that we do not turn the 'other' into an object, means we understand it not to be an other, but we meet at the point of sameness or at the level of being where we connect as one.

Now first of all, I may have done a poor job of explaining Bubers idea and secondly, I may completely misunderstand the ideas from I am That. If so I will continue to try to 'get it'.

All real living is meeting...Martin Buber


I decided to throw this paragraph from the book in there---
"The world is twofold for man in accordance with his twofold attitude.
He perceives the being that surrounds him, plain things and beings as things; he perceives what happens around him, plain processes and actions as processes, things that consist of qualities and processes that consist of moments, things recorded in terms of spatial coordinates and processes recorded in terms of temporal coordinates, things and processes that are bounded by other things and processes and capable of being measure against and compared with those others-an orderd world, a detached world. This world is somewhat reliable; it has density and duration; its articulation can be surveyed; one can get it out again and again; one recounts it with one's eyes closed and then checks with one's eyes open. There is stands---right next to your skin if you think of it that way, or nestled in your soul if you prefer that: it is your object and remains that, according to your pleasure---and remains primally alien both outside and inside you. You perceive it and take it for your "truth"; it permits itself to be taken by you, but it does not give itself to you. It is only about it that you can come to an understanding with others; although it takes a somehwat different form for everybody, it is prepared to be a common object for you; but you cannot encounter others in it. Without it you cannot remain alive; its reliability preserves you, but if you were to die into it, then you would be buried in nothingness."
"I am what I am."--Popeye

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Re: Here it is!

Postby W4TVQ » February 26th, 2008, 7:27 pm

Stefan, i agree with what you posted in response to my observations. I gave, I am sure, the impression that
i am embracing a sort of Christian science approach to the body -- it doesn't exist, so why bother with it? -- but I have to acknowledge by my own behaviour that I recognize the value of the body, not merly as a hindrance, but as a tool with a purpose. I feed the thing, take it to doctors, and all that physical stuff. And its purpose is, I can see, precisely what you and Nisargadatta say it is. Admittedly, sitting here with a back brace on, with sciatica pain making movement painful, and a neck injury from 1955 creating chronic neck and shoulder pain, that I am less than fond of being a corporeal being, and look forward eagerly to being a non-corporeal one. I tend to see the body, not as something to be ignored, but as something to be transcended, and the urge to transcend it would not exist were there no body to transcend. Am I talking in circles? Yes. At least I make sense ot me.

Jen, you touch on something else extremely important, relationship ... ACIM is big on that, as witness the lengthy dissertation in the text on the "Holy Relationship," and the assertion that "Heaven, like the ark, is entered two by two." A look deeper into ACIM, though, shows that it is not limiting relationship to the "two by two" idea that suggests separate bodies and separete "persons," but ultimately shows us a universe in which All is God, and God is All, and in which (to quote Bach) "perfect speed is being there." That makes sense of Nelson's image of the "Grand Cosmic Being." We can experience the far reaches of the universe because we are there already. You and I, and Stefan, and Nancy, et. al., have a relationship that for the moment is limited by time and space; yet none of us but is part and parcel of the other, notes that blend to form a chord which then cannot be separated into notes again. I find that I do not experience that relationship as it really is, but only suspect that it is so and expect to realize it fully by and by. As, hopefully, a non-corporeal being! St. Paul's doctrine of the 'resurrection of the body' gives me the creeps.

Am I making sense, or just blathering? Either way, i'm enjoyinf this thread.

Namaste
Art
"I can at best report only from my own wilderness. The important thing is that each man possess such a wilderness and that he consider what marvels are to be observed there." -- Loren Eiseley

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Re: Here it is!

Postby Neo » February 26th, 2008, 9:35 pm

Jeepers, i turn my back for a couple of minutess and everythng's changed. Annas' Blog and elyzium, what's next.

I find that I do not experience that relationship as it really is, but only suspect that it is so and expect to realize it fully by and by.


When i said that to a teacher once he scolded me, and said that i already do experience it but i am just no aware of it. Whatever that means

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Re: Here it is!

Postby jenjulian » February 27th, 2008, 2:09 am

When our minds identify with the body, we are living in the I/it world. Everything is an 'it' to us. This is the nonliving, the walking dead, the asleep state.
In contrast when our minds identify with the Self, when we put ourselves together correctly (S Weil says we are put together upside down) then we live in the I/Thou world. Here we meet, through bodies that are a creative tool and not our constraint.

Just slopping some thoughts together, so anyone, tear away...this is how I figure things out.

Art, I hope you find some relief to your pain. Do you do meditation tapes?
Hi Neo, I enjoy your comments a lot, and your 'minutes' away are soooooo long...
"I am what I am."--Popeye

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Re: Here it is!

Postby jenjulian » February 28th, 2008, 4:11 am

I meant to include this in the above paragraph of Buber. This is the next paragraph he writes and where all of the good stuff is.

Or on the other hand, man meets what exists and becomes as what is over against him, always simply a single being and each thing simply as being. What exists is opened to him in happenings, and what happens affects him as what is. Nothing is present for him except this one being, but it implicates the whole world. Measure and comparison have disappeared; it lies with yourself how much of the immeasurable becomes reality for you. These meetings are not organized to make the world, but each is a sign of the world-order. They are not linked up with one another, but each assures you of your solidarity with the world. The world which appears to you in this way is unreliable, for it takes on a continually new appearance; you cannot hold it to its word. It has no density, for everything in it penetrates everything else; no duration, for it comes even when it is not summoned, and vanishes even when it is tightly held. It cannot be surveyed, and if you wish to make it capable of survey you lose it. It comes, and comes to bring you out; if it does not reach you, meet you, then it vanishes; but it comes back in another form. It is not outside you, it stirs in the depth of you; if you say "Soul of my soul" you have not said too much. But guard against wishing to remove it into your soul - for then you annihilate it. It is your present; only while you have it do you have the present. You can make it into an object for yourself, to experience and to use; you must continually do this - and as you do it you have no more present. Between you and it there is mutual giving: you say Thou to it and give yourself to it, it says Thou to you and gives itself to you. You cannot make yourself understood with others concerning it, you are alone with it. But it teaches you to meet others, and to hold your ground when you meet them. Through the graciousness of its comings and the solemn sadness of its goings it leads you away to the Thou in which the parallel lines of relations meet. It does not help to sustain you in life, it only helps you to glimpse eternity.
Martin Buber, I and Thou
"I am what I am."--Popeye

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Re: Here it is!

Postby phyllis » March 13th, 2008, 5:20 pm

I remember reading Buber in college, in a required philosophy class, I think it was, and it meant absolutely nothing to me. Of course, I memorized enough to pass the exams, but beyond that, it might as well have been Greek. How I have changed.

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Re: Here it is!

Postby Speculum » April 28th, 2008, 1:44 pm

Once again, reading in Nisargadatta last evening:

Do understand that you cannot ask a valid question about yourself, because you do not know whom you are asking about.

Wow! He continues,

In the question “Who am I” the “I” is not known, and the question can be worded as: “I do not know what I mean by I”.

And again,

Whatever happens, remind yourself that only your body and mind are affected, not yourself. The more earnest you are at remembering what needs to be remembered, the sooner will you be aware of yourself as you are, for memory will become experience. Earnestness reveals being.
"The only real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust


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