Saturday, 27 March 2010

O, Our Lives' Sweetness! That We The Pain Of Death Would Hourly Die Rather Than Die At Once!

The unfolding story of a life might be anything; the claiming of those incidents, feelings, thoughts, and attributes are what constitutes an ego. It is preached over and over again that the ego is undesirable. The ego is. The personality negotiates this bliss and sorrow and madness and sanity that is the world, the universe; or at least, it seems to. The mistake, we are told, is to take the mind's stringing together of what happens in time as the whole of our existence. The error, it is said by many, is to have the unfolding story informed and motivated by fear. No, no, say others, the problem is to pay any attention to the story at all. The story, after all, is comprised of a lot of past memories and future plans that have no more substance than a few electrical impulses in the brain. Live in the here and now, it is strongly suggested. No, no, that's wrong, say some, it isn't about living in the here and now; it's identifying with the here and now, it's the ego willing itself to be here, now that's the problem. The ego doesn't really exist. It is an airy-fairy construct. What you are is what comes before the ego claims and feels and interprets, before the ego decides it needs to be here and now. But what am I, say a chorus of people led by their ego, if not this thing that feels and decides and thinks and lives?

Well, say many, you are what the feeling and deciding and thinking and living arises in. All appearances of life are the same thing, but take many apparent forms. And the pensioner writing vehement letters about the local councillors neglecting to show up to council meetings, the soul very deeply enmeshed in the story, with no clue that the nature of existence is boundless and is comprised of limitless possibility itself, is just as infinite as the yogi abiding in I Am. The form is unimportant. The content is insignificant. The stories are as they must be, and that includes everything, including the impulse to action to change the story into something "better".

There is a huge desire, a massive (often implicit) aspiration of the egos that write about nonduality (or enlightenment or awakening) to show others their true nature, to help egos to stop identifying with the story the ego negotiates and the attributes the ego possesses. Just a few sessions will do it, some promise; others practice tough love and tell the egos to stop clinging to love and compassion, that it's just another trap for the ego to stick around, now considering itself to be pure unconditional love. Whatever is suggested, is suggested, and whatever is attempted is attempted. No matter how "to the point" the content of the story is, it is just another interesting manifestation of energy, which is, after all, what matter also is. No matter how deluded or how sensible the story is, it is all infinite and eternal, boundless and free, no matter how the mind interprets what is happening.

Enjoying it, even the "bad" bits, is always a possibility, for mere existence is wonder.

The clip is from Roberto Benigni's Life Is Beautiful. How he makes use of the worst possible situation to amuse his son is the imagination's proof that anything, any circumstance, can be tolerable.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

For Truth Hath Better Deeds Than Words To Grace It.

It doesn't matter what you do, and whatever you do, there is no one choosing to do it. All energies are equal, all insanities fitting, all deeds made moot by their fleeting non-existence; yet each form of the ever-changing, endless moment is rich in meaning and wonder. It doesn't matter how it is seen, this life, this existence; all perceptions are valid, all beliefs suitable, all thoughts appropriate, all action correct. Nothing delights in life; it is delight itself. The tug and pull of the quality of unconditional love as the pervasive and nascent quality of everything is compelling; we want it to be so; we need it to be so; it is so. Life makes no judgments on itself; it lives. The duality that exists so that life can take form necessitates good and bad, comfort and uneasiness, bliss and despair. What knows this, what sees this, and what notes this is what you are; you are not what is noted, although this case of mistaken identity is not wrong. Some scion of awareness crawls into the story and the story becomes all-important; and although a rising-above this is often encouraged, to be and feel and live the story is also a miracle, no matter what the story seems to be.

Without resistance, the unfolding story can flow into endless possibility, unhindered by the limited imagination. With resistance, the story can be intense in its emotions and rich in its synchronicity; remember no one chooses, all choices choose life, in yet another guise. To be free of the grasping ego is liberation, and to be caught up in the grasping ego is a privilege. Who judges that freedom is the ultimate goal? There are no true goals, only different energies, tasks appreciated or rejected, paths explored or uninvestigated. Life is life. There is no way to get it wrong; there is no way to get it right.

I love this clip from the ultimate pretentious, rule-breaking film of the eighties, My Dinner With Andre. The look on Wallace Shawn's face after Andre's interesting church story is priceless! Maybe imagination isn't so limited after all.

Saturday, 13 March 2010

But The Wisest Beholder, That Knew No More But Seeing, Could Not Say If The Importance Were Joy or Sorrow.

Such a deep, dark, depressing crevasse to look down upon, the notion that all is meaningless. Yet it is, after all, just a notion, and the thing that believes it a construct. Constructed by what? By learning through time, which is a concept in itself; by thoughts taken seriously by themselves; and by reinforcement from a collective of thought constructs. Reality is airy-fairy. The solidity of matter, the mystery of life, and the consciousness that registers it all is a bonus, and enigma, and a wonder, no matter what the interpretation or quality of reality seems to be.

Much is made of the concepts by which our inadequate-to-the-task minds explain the very thing the mind arises in. Concepts suggest that concepts are in the way. Planned thoughts and actions, only accomplished through the convenient tool of time and more concepts, infer that there is a method by which the mind can be occluded and the seamlessness of existence be apprehended directly; and it is implied that this direct experience is always the case, and the thoughts that are "in the way" are actually part of the seamlessness. And, in fact, that there are no object or subjects, not even the consciousness that separates and labels things; that actually, whether it is labelled "oneness" or "twoness", reality is what reality is, however it seems to be. Period. And it is this reality, no matter how inadequate or painful, that's what is sought by everyone; and it is the inability to realise this that causes (in nonexistent time) the pain and the feeling of inadequacy.

There is nothing wrong, not even (or possibly especially) the feeling that something is wrong. The journey home starts from home, roves around the intricacies of the home we call all creation, and ends, amusingly, at home.

Mimi wo Sumaseba (Whisper of the Heart) is a lovely, gentle amime film that meanders placidly through the life of a little girl, Shizuku. A plot device is several rewritten versions of Country Roads by John Denver. The road home is also home.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

'Tis In The Malice of Mankind That He Thus Advises Us; Not To Have Us Thrive In Our Mystery.

Discover your true nature...that is the promise, the future event, that brings seekers of the meaning of life to sites like this one. They come for meaning, and are either told there isn't any, or that their humdrum ordinary life is fraught with intrinsic meaning, if only they perceive it a bit differently. There are instructions (investigate the "I"), there are paradoxical teachings from people who insist they aren't teachers (no one can teach you to be what you already are), and there is the assurance that the comfy, cozy reality you've always known is, indeed, the very thing you seek; that it is the awareness that reality arises in that is truly reality; that, in fact, what you seek is what seeks; and that there is no change, not really, not even some perceptual shift. It is the realization of this, the fact that "you've" always already been "enlightened", and that enlightenment or awakening is simply (for the mind) at last being content with "what is" that constitutes awakening. In that acceptance of what is, the lack of resistance to what is, including the very resistance itself, lies the secret, the obvious conclusion; we are where we are, we are what we are, now. Whatever and wherever that is, is open to the mind's interpretation, and all interpretations are correct.

The mind will have lots of conditioned ideas about what all this means, and what actions are subsequently required. It will reject any apparent incongruities, i. e., teaching your children to share or engage in any behaviour that reflects a value system, because all value systems are a product of the ego taking itself and its role too seriously. However, it may become clear that you can't get it wrong. There are many words devoted to describing existence, and the concept of nothingness, and how everything that seems to be happening is not happening at all; if the mind ponders the possibility of nothingness, a sort of awe arises, and perhaps a thankfulness for mere existence, which comes to resemble a miracle in and of itself. It may become clear that the tools of duality that are so richly available (when nothing exists except perhaps a bit of cleverly arranged energy, devoid of judgment) are the very things we've been searching for. Maybe it becomes glaringly apparent that life, just as it is, is the very thing we've been traveling to Oz to find, when it has been living in our own back yard. Perhaps the ego and its baggage are something to relish. Perhaps the struggles of mankind, and his suffering, and his quest to relieve that suffering, are the priceless gifts of humanity. Maybe, just maybe, you've been doing it all along, even the doubting of it and the questioning and the restlessness, irritability and discontent.

Miller, the nutball from the entirely excellent film Repo Man, surely has this all figured out.