Sunday, 26 June 2011

Oxi-clean it, you oxymoron!

Self Realisation.


Self Awareness.







Cos there ain't no self.  There ain't no ego.  There ain't no centre.

You can't be aware of, realise or enquire into something that doesn't exist.

Self and ego are thoughts.

Always only living.  Not being done by a you, a them, a they, an it.

Just doing.

G'wan.  Have a look.

You.  Yes, you!

Stop dicking around trying to be self-aware or self-realised and for feck's sake stop trying to enquire into something that is non-existent.  Take the short cut.  And just see that this 'thing' that is labelled self is just that: a label.  A there-and-gone thought that's based on absolutely nothing.

That's it.  Easy-peasy lemon-squeezy.

Use a bit of oxyclean looking to see the oxymorons for what they are.

And then you'll see that you're already free!

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Cutting the Cake

We'll call her 'C'. Sweet girl.  Enthusiastic, eager to please - really wanted to do a good job.  First class intent.

"C", says I.  "Can you cut a piece of that cake for the customer?".

She looks at me.  Looks at the cake and says "Cake?  For the customer?  Yes, I can do that."  And off she toddles to get a knife.  Chooses a knife.  Pulls it out and takes it across to the cake.  Looks at the knife and thinks about whether it is the correct knife to do the job. Changes her mind.

Takes the knife back.

Chooses another knife.  Takes it to the cake.  Looks at the cake.

Puts the knife down.

Goes to find a plate.  Gets the plate.

Puts it back.  Chooses another. Places it next to the cake.  Picks the knife up.

Looks at the cake, puts the tip of the knife on the centre of the cake.  Moves it over.  Puts the knife down.

Gets a napkin, picks up the knife again; decides it's still not the right knife for the job.  Goes back to the knife rack and picks out the first one she'd selected.

All the while she's calculating and weighing up the options for the mechanics of cutting the cake.  Obsessing over the best way to do it, the correct tools to use, the best position to start the cutting.

Until I snap at her: "C, cut the bloody cake.  Just cut it."

See, until she cut the cake, it was just a concept to C.  An idea.  She was applying a model of cake-cutting without ever actually cutting the cake.  Until finally, she was pushed to do it.  Without thinking.  "Cut the cake, C".  C cuts the cake - there's no longer an option to conceptualise the practice of cake-cutting.  The knife goes in, the cake gets cut.  Job done.  And it's obvious at that point that it didn't matter what knife she used or what plate she put it on; the cake gets cut, as only cake can be.  And all the rest is window dressing. 

And this example is applicable to any area of life.  You can posit the possibility of doing something.  You can consider notions of it.  Draw up a plan.  Sketch out a blueprint.  Draw up detailed instructions. Write a manual and expound a theory.  But in the end, the only way to do it... is to do it.

Yeah, it's good to have a plan of action and a tried and tested method, honed by people before you, who've floundered and failed and worked out what didn't work so that they can tell you the most efficient and effective way to get it done.  So that when they say 'do it', you know that's the best course of action.

Stop thinking about HOW to do it and just do it.

And nowhere does this apply more urgently or with more relevance and importance than to looking at the reality of whether or not there is a you.  

You can think about what you think you might be.  You can practice looking for yourself.  You can medidate on your higher self.  You can read up on the best method of dissolving yourself.  You can discuss the notion of no-self.  You can think about the idea and about how what you are is just a thought.  But until you look; actually look to see whether there is a real, findable, seeable, identifiable self, then you're just thinking about cutting the cake.

It doesn't matter how keen you are, how enthusiastic or earnest or desperate; until you pick up the knife and get the cake cut, the cake will stay sitting there uncut.

Pick up the knife.  Cut the bloody cake.

Look.  What you are is a thought.  A belief.  Look.

P.S.  Needless to say, C is no longer trying to cut cake in my employ.  She's 'thinking about cutting cake' somewhere else.

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Kind Hearts and Humility

What's needed is a kind heart and humility. The kind of humility that comes from realising that what you thought you are is a lie.

It takes humility to even be willing to consider that, and then to entertain it as a possibility, and finally to see the truth of it.

There is no truth without humility. And there is no urge to take the truth and lay it out for someone else - for them to have the opportunity to be humble in the face of reality - without having a kind heart.

Crucially, kindness is the urge; kindredness - that drives you to keep at it, to keep trying to lay it out and use every method you can find to force that moment of humility that will allow someone to finally give up defending the falseness, and to humble themselves. To literally be humbled.

Kindness overcomes lazyness, apathy, tiredness, doubt. It's what gives a damn.

Kindness will be brutal, uncompromising, cold, harsh and cruel if it needs to be, because it has been humbled by the truth, and it has no option but to gift that humility in kindness.

It's what says'I've seen this, and you deserve to, as well, because we're kindred.'

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Take a Dive

Sitting in a pub garden in beautiful countryside on a sunny June day and there's a group of elderly women.  They're sitting in the same garden, seeing the same view under the same cloudless, sunny, blue sky and what are they talking about?  Illness.  Infirmity.  How awful everything is.  They're sitting there eating freshly prepared, delicious food, drinking a glass of cold wine under the summer sun on a walled patio surrounded by green-ness and fecundity.  And what arises for them? How awful it is.

On the face of it, it sounded like they were suffering.  If you'd just been listening to a recording of their conversation you would have been forgiven for believing that they were sitting in some dreary, dingy room in pain and discomfort.

But they weren't.  Now, perhaps, once you've done the 'ooooh, isn't that a lovely view, what fabulous weather, isn't this food lovely' conversation - then people start to come up with other topics.  And you could ask why there seems to be such a heavy focus on the negative.

Are we wired to see the negative?  In the absence of real drama and action, do people naturally manufacture and whip-up scenarios?  Do we prefer an involvement in a dramatic story as opposed to peace and contentment? 

Does it matter why?  Is that going to change anything?  Why not, instead, look at the mechanism.  Dispassionately observe what is going on when people seem to suffer.

Next time, there's a thought that says "Oh, God, this is terrible.".  STOP.  Look at the thought.  It's a concept. It appears to say something about something else.

If you look at the thought and see it as a label, and then look at the actual happening in reality, does it match up with the thought?  Does it?  

Look.  Look at what the thought is saying is true/happening and then look at what is actually the reality of what is happening.  Everything that we label as something is a concept - it's never the thing ......obviously.  So what actually is there?  

When we say "I am depressed".  How do we know?  One person's despair is another's depression is another's ennui.  It depends on your categorisation; where the concept was picked up from, how you learnt what 'depressed' is.    

So first, there is sensation and a thought that labels the sensation as  'I'm depressed'.  If you were to throw a blanket over that thought - effectively see it as a blanked-out signpost, what would be left?  Feelings, emotions, sensations.  

Then look at those. What actually are THEY?

The next time (and that may be in the next few minutes), when a feeling or emotion emerges and a thought comments on it, throw a blanket over the thought and focus on the feeling. Actually experience it, don't attend to the thought label, but the actual sensation.

Look at it - can you actually find it?  Can you pin it down to being anyTHING at all?

It's the same as seeing no-self. Looking at something that is labelled 'depression', or 'grief', or 'happiness' is just looking at the label; the thought; the concept  - and taking it to be some THING that actually exists.

It's all in the looking.

And when you look and see that it's only a label and look at the actual reality, what is there in reality?

All that there is, is a vibrant, aliveness that is NOT the label or the concept or the idea.

In the same way that you can look at the idea of a self and see that it doesn't exist, so you can look at any emotional condition and see that it's just a concept.  

It isn't real, it isn't true.

It's just not there. That 'thing' that is labelled depression... isn't.  It's a belief. A thought. 

I'm not saying it isn't intense sensation WHILST it appears to exists, but there isn't a thing called depression; there isn't a condition of grief, or anxiety, or contentment, or joy, or boredom. 

Listen, I know that sounds dismissive to anyone who says that they have been depressed or grieved or been content or bored.  So test it.

The next time you get the thought, for instance: "I am anxious".  See what it links to.  Have a look at the existing sensation that the thought labels 'anxious'.  Really get a good look at it - dive into it as you would into the ocean and see what happens.  Watch the movement of it and see where it goes; what happens to the actual raw sensation. 

Where does it go to?

Then look to see whether the reason that thought attributes to the causing of the sensation, did actually cause it; i.e. "I feel anxious because I've got no money".  Why would having no money create a condition of anxiousness?  It's just having no money and then out of that reality of not having money, action happens - you beg, borrow, steal, look under the sofa or earn some.  

The thought story tags a sensation of constriction in one place and fluttering in another as "Anxiousness"; and bingo, bango, bongo: there's the suffering.

Whilst there is immersion in the actual, real, raw sensation then that's all there is, but when you look and see that it doesn't come from anything and isn't created by any thing, then it's just what it is, only what it is.
Look in reality for depression, anxiety, suffering, grief - there's no such thing.  No such thing as a condition OF anything.  There is a story that is attached to the belief in a self. i.e. that there is some THING that is happening to a 'me'.  But it's only a story, a moving process that ever changes, like the belief and the sense and the feeling of there being a self.  

It's not enough to see that there's no actual self, because there are still labels that say 'depression', 'grief', 'anxiety',  and whilst those are taken to be actual things, then there is belief in an experience of suffering. 

Look at the actual reality of 'I am suffering'.  Drop the thought-label and have a look and see what is really happening - are you sitting in a country pub garden in the  middle of Summer, eating and drinking (or the current actual version of it) and believing the thought that says:
a)  There is a you, and 
b)  There is suffering.

There isn't any such thing as suffering.  Look at the thought 'suffering', see it as a label and then look at the experience that is labelled and watch as it moves and goes back into nothing.

Take a dive in to the frothing movement of the surface and watch as it is re-absorbed and dis-appears into the fathomless depths of nothing, taking it with it the story that it threw up about a someone who suffered from a non-existent concept.  

The concept that is nothing.  Absolutely nothing. Because there's nothing for it to hold onto.  It just ... well, it doesn't even go away - it doesn't exist in the first place; it can't even disappear or fade away or weaken. 

The fathomless depth froths up and even as it's frothing it's no more. Not even sound and fury, just empty bubbles of nothing, gone before they can be said to exist.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Leave of Absence

First off,  an excerpt from:

"when he (Tolle) talks about stillness and presence
he gives the impression that they are things
when in fact
they are the absence of things"

So, here's the deal. It's real that there's no you, it's real that there's no anything. 

What is existence?  What is THIS?  

What is experience?  It's what's apparent; what appears.

Appearance is absence....erm ...becoming ... apparent.

But absence does not appear..... obviously.

All appearances (life, whatever) are a level playing field. It looks like there are apparent highs and lows and differentiation, variation, opposites...but they balance out.They come from absence and they dis-appear to absence.

So, what there only is, is absence.  Anything that comes and goes can't exist other than as a temporary appearance, so it can't be absolutely real.  The only thing that doesn't appear... isn't apparent...... is absence. 

All that is absolutely real is the absence of things. Any thing.

You can't deny the appearance of things whilst they appear.  But because appearance is temporary (even if the appearance seems to be long-term i.e.. a mountain;  it's changing constantly and can't even be said to 'be' a  mountain), then there is nothing lasting.

Literally, all that lasts is nothing.

Total absence of any thing: The only constant.

This sounds mystical and inscrutable, but it isn't, it's totally pragmatic and obvious..If you sit wherever you are and watch what's going on, then nothing stays static; nothing ever stays permanent.
Because there is no thing that is static, fixed, and ultimately observable in any way, there is only the abscence.
Because absence doesn't come and go, it's absolute reality.

The only permanance is the absence of any thing.  And absence isn't a thing.  It's not even nothing.

It's all there is.  And all that isn't.