Making It Personal. “Who Am I?” Done Right.

Dissolving and becoming absorbed into the flower.

Dissolving and becoming absorbed into the flower.

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 23, 2016 3:49 PM

Just before I “woke up,” I was sitting in my camp chair on Mt. Hood, practicing what I would later learn was called samyama. I would look at a flower, and try to become one with it. I would sit there, staring at it intently while actively trying to dissolve the perceived boundaries between the flower and myself. I would try to dissolve myself (me-me-me-me-ME!) and become absorbed into the flower.

While I could kind of get a taste of the feeling of Oneness, I wasn’t getting it in the sense I could say, “I got it!” Still, I could feel the “me” softening. In that same week, while sitting on a rock overlooking a brook, I challenged a frog to a meditation contest—and lost. This pissed me off like you wouldn’t believe, and I couldn’t get it out of my mind. How could a stupid frog be better at mediation that me(-me-me-me-ME)!

Soon after that, I “woke up” and the boundaries between “me” and “other” collapsed over the next three weeks. … Read more…

30 Years Wasted. How To Do Ramana Maharshi’s “Who Am I?” All Wrong.

When the Me-Story's Gone.

When the Me-Story’s Gone.

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 22, 2016 9:34 AM

Yesterday, for the book, I wrote:

I spent about 30 years of my life doing Ramana Maharshi’s “Who am I?” technique all wrong. The query is so simple that it’s hard to believe anyone could do it wrong, but spiritual techniques and theories are so notoriously vague and incomplete that assumptions—usually incorrect assumptions—are by necessity made by students.

Sad but true.

Here is what I was doing wrong by asking myself, “Who am I?” for thirty years… … Read more…

Discovering Your Life’s Purpose

Remember what you're fighting for. (Painting in the bathroom of Bookman's in Flagstaff, AZ)

Remember what you’re fighting for. (Painting in the bathroom of Bookman’s in Flagstaff, AZ)

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 19, 2016 1:52 PM

If you believe you are a Soul—and at this point, why wouldn’t you?—and if you believe you came back for a reason (and why wouldn’t you?), then how do you discover that reason? How do you discover your life’s purpose?

Over the last couple of days, I wrote the following for the book-in-progress under the chapter The Lessons of the Soul. Yeah, I know, earlier I had mentioned I was in “clean up the text” mode, but soon realized there was more to say. It’s a process.

Standard first-draft disclaimers apply… … Read more…

The ‘Me’ Vacuum

This is your brain on 'Me'

This is your brain on ‘Me’

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 17, 2016 10:41 AM

The other day, I asked Michelle how she accesses Emptiness. She responded (in part):

Usually I’ll be ruminating on something and then snap into a “wait, this is ridiculous to spend all of this mental energy on illusion” sort of realization and it will just happen like that.

When I get caught up in my me-me-me thoughts, I focus on the feel of the contraction/thoughts and visualize pulling them out of my head and dropping them to the ground beside me.

What happens next is what most people call “enlightenment.” The outside world fills the space that was left behind when the me-me-me thoughts were removed and the world and I become one. The Gateless Gate—the felt barrier between the inside world and the outside world—vanishes.

Notice what happened with both Michelle and I: We were focused on interior thoughts (the introspective section of the brain was activated), then we removed the contents of the interior. Because nature abhors a vacuum, the interior space automatically gets “filled” with the outside world. … Read more…

The Forest Sprites

I Awoke To Snow

I Awoke To Snow

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 16, 2016 8:16 AM

“Snow,” my mind said as I lay in bed, looking out the window just as clump fell from a branch. As the clump fell, it released a cloud, and—backlit by the morning sun—a forest sprite appeared and drifted briefly through the wood, lost, only to succumb to the hardness of the material world… collapsing and dying and fading into the ground.

“Snow,” my Mind said.

But my Heart saw a forest sprite.

Have you ever met someone who just “gets” you? Your Mind says they understand you, but your Heart feels/knows/experiences that they get you. … Read more…

A Tough Few Days — Part II: The LSD Study

An Illusion?

An Illusion?

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 15, 2016 10:15 AM

Yesterday I mentioned that a couple of things had thrown me for a loop: The “failure” of a theory I had, and an article I had read earlier that morning which made me question if spirituality was just a big mental illusion.

This morning, Rob resolved the first point (in the comments) by noting that my theory’s “failure” was due to a simple framing problem (physical needs confused with mental desires (a point worthy of a blog post all it’s own)), but the problem of “spirituality being all in your head” was still disturbing.  … Read more…

A Tough Few Days. Part I: A Failure of Focus

The View From Outside My Mind

The View From Outside My Mind

 

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 14, 2016 10:07 AM

It’s been a difficult few days: I stopped eating for three days to test a theory I had (which failed), and just this morning, questioned whether this whole spiritual thing was all in my head.

I’ll break these events into two posts.

The theory I was working on was that if we just shift our focus (what you focus on you become) to the Sea of Love and Light, we can get over practically any form of negative thinking. … Read more…

What You Focus On, You Become

The Mysteriously Missing Self

The Mysteriously Missing Self

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 10, 2016 10:42 AM

When I’m writing a blog post, the “me” disappears and I become the Post.

When I write computer code, the “me” disappears and I become the Code.

When I watch the horrors on the news, the “me” disappears and I become the Horror.

I suspect the same goes for yourself.

What we focus on, we become.Read more…

Strengthening and Nurturing the Mystic Aspect

Morning Outside a College Town Coffee Shop

Morning Outside a College Town Coffee Shop

NEAR FLAGSTAFF, AZ

April 7, 2016 3:04 PM

I have a number of subgoals set up for the book: Outline; Introduction; Soul Chapter; Mystic Chapter; Clean Up; Book Proposal; Send to Publishers/Agents; (Write the rest of the book)…

Today I finished the first draft of the Mystic chapter. This is a turning point in the whole book process: The shift from raw writing to cleaning up and prepping. From here, it’s about getting the manuscript ready for submission to publishers and/or literary agents.

Below is the first draft of the final section of the Mystic Aspect. Standard first-draft disclaimer… … Read more…