19 October 2014

SATSANG TODAY, 2PM CALIFORNIA TIME, OCTOBER 19 

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13 October 2014

12 October 2014

CARLY ON TODAY'S SATSANG:


I watched your Satsang today and OMG! I

I love that I truly understand you now.

I love that I know I am a co creator now.


I use to blame everything and everyone for

my life not knowing I was creating it all the

whole time. I love because of free will God

Is always being surprised  by itself. It gives

life and we get to be little creators of this

given life. Oh its so beautiful and such a

marvelous design.

I saw u cry and I know

that cry, I love that cry. It's a cry of

perfection from the being to the end. A cry

of beauty.  I know the knowledge of past

lives I had. How lucky Edji that we get to

be the ones that experience and we get to

be the ones who allow God to know itself,

experience itself. I love being alive Edji.

Gratitude becomes a constant and I was

missing that I needed that.


I love that there are no good and bad ,right or wrong.

That's a human experience.  So the bad is

the exact same as the good to the source;

it loves us just because we experience. My

purpose is to experience and I believe the

best orgasm for the source is to remember

itself thru the human consciousness .


Edji without you I wouldn't have found the

strength to keep trying and keep going.

I know that nothingness, I thought the void

would be black but it seemed to me to be a

bright light. I didn't know tho until I was

out of it. There was no body to know it

just was. I could be wrong but I feel a

knowingness a place in me feels like its

in my solar plexus tells me truths. It feels

like fear is in the bottom half of myself. I

cannot leave this world behind because I

wouldn't be able to do what I was made for; to

Experience god.

Great Satsang Edji. Sorry

I missed the others. I love u so much. Guess

What?? I love me too. Not my body me,but

The real me. The me that's you and the

me that's  everyone else. If not for last

summer all the pain I had, the broken

heart, I wouldn't be where I am today...

Happy as fuck!

Carly

ONLINE SATSANG TODAY, SUNDAY OCTOBER 12 AT 2PM CALIFORNIA TIME

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TOPIC:  Coming alive into Grace from the Void. I HAVE COME ALIVE!

11 October 2014

FROM THIS TO THIS IN FIVE MONTHS--THE SCIENTIFIC WAY



I am not sure when this photo was taken, nor was I at my maximum weight at this time of 236 on May 10, 2014.  I was probably 225 here.

Taken with Rajiv sometime in 2013.

Notice how stiff I am from lack of movement post hip replacement surgery.















Taken about a week and a half ago.  Weight 198.

The following is about scientific weight loss principles and practice.  I lost about 40 lbs in 20 weeks.

The basic principles are you have to know what you need to weigh, count calories every day for the  weight loss you want, maintain a high protein diet to preserve muscle mass, stay away from hard exercise and concentrate on diet, exercise enough to maintain muscle mass, spend a bit of time each day as you lose weight to take advantage of your increased mobility and flexibility.




HERE IS THE ENTIRE PROGRAM. IF YOU FIND THIS TO BE OF VALUE, PLEASE DONATE TO HELP SUPPORT THIS BLOG, MY TEACHINGS, AND MY ANIMAL RESCUE WORK:





HOW I LOST 40 LBS IN FIVE MONTHS WITH LITTLE EXERCISE.

Rather than a specific diet, these are the principals.

Determine your optimal weight based on insurance height and weight charts.  Be kind to yourself and use the top of the normal weight for your height value.

CALCULATE YOUR TOTAL DAILY CALORIE INTAKE FOR YOUR IDEAL WEIGHT.

For men, maintenance calorie intake is 12 calories per pound of ideal weight, and for women, it is 10.  This is a basic, maintenance value for someone who is basically sedentary.  These calories are needed just to maintain metabolism. Exercises require additional calories, or result in additional weight loss.

Suppose you are a 50 year old man who weighs 200 lbs, but the ideal weight charts say you should weigh 160.  You have to lose 40 lbs.  To maintain a 200 lb weight you have to eat 200X12 calories a day, or 2,400 calories.

A 160 lb man has to eat 160X12, or 1,920 calories a day.  If you just eat as if you were 160 lbs and wanted to maintain that weight while weighing 200, you would have almost a 500 calorie deficit, which would result in a weight loss of 1 lb. per week (1 lb of fat = 3,500 calories).
Thus by eating 1,920 calories a day, you would lose the 40 lbs in 40 weeks.

But if you consume only 1,400 calories a day, you would lose 2 lbs per week, and the 40 lbs. in 20 weeks, or 5 months.

PRESERVE MUSCLE MASS. As you lose weight by eating less than you need to maintain your fat weight, the body has to decide whether to consume your internal fat or your muscle mass.  Therefore it is incredibly important to maintain a high protein intake proportionately to the total calories consumed, or you can lose almost as much muscle weight as fat weight.  It is not uncommon to lose as much muscle as fat, and you do not want to do this.  Muscle mass actually increases your metabolism, and the body’s need for calories, making weight loss easier.

This is difficult if you are Vegan, but not impossible. If a vegetarian, it is much easier with cheese, yogurt, milk, and eggs, as well as tofu and legumes.

As a general rule, the textbooks say you need 1 gram of protein for every pound of ideal weight. Thus for a 160 lb man, this means 160 grams of protein a day to preserve muscle and organ mass.  I think this is far too high, as it means 640 calories of a 1,400 calorie diet must be protein, which means you’ll be eating all cheese, milk, and egg products in addition to tofu and legumes.  For myself, I kept to 90 grams of protein a day by using protein supplements, cheese, tofu, and eggs once in a while.

DO NOT WEIGHT YOURSELF MORE THAN ONCE A MONTH, otherwise the short-term weight swings will drive you crazy.  Trust that restricting calories will result in weight loss.  Experiment during the month with different food combinations, calorie restriction levels, eating 3 to 5 meals a day, which will teach you what works best for you in terms of weight loss and overall feeling of well-being.

LEARN HOW TO COUNT CALORIES.  You have to know how much you are eating each day, and one of the best ways is to by microwave dinners from the supermarket that tell you total calories, total fat and total protein calories.  This makes it so easy to calculate how many of each kind of calories you are eating each day.  Specific recommendations are mentioned later.

ELIMINATION
Since you are consuming less food and densely rich food, you need to be concerned with urinary and fecal elimination.  It is easy to get constipated using such diets, which will have a major impact on your scale weight. Also the kidneys will be working overtime to eliminate by products of fat burning.

So, drinking liquids is imperative.  I drink an extra 40 ounces of water in addition to 60-80 ounces of coffee, tea, soft drink, and occasional beer per day.  You need to add fiber to your diet, so at least one of the glasses of water needs a fiber supplement, such as Metamucil or Citricell.

Also, each day I have one meal that is low calorie and nothing but raw vegetables and fruit.  This is my bulk meal, just 200 or so  calories, and it consists of about one pound of: chopped green pepper, cucumber, mushrooms, tomato, olives, olive liquid, apple, and Krafts Low Cal. Balsamic Vinegrette (25 calores per tablespoon), or a low cal Italian dressing at 15 calories per tablespoon.

EXERCISE:
Really, none is needed except to maintain muscle mass.  Each day the body has to decide whether to consume your fat or your muscles and organs to maintain life.  Daily aerobic exercise is nearly useless in weight loss, because you have to do so much to lose so little.  BUT, working out with resistance, either free weights, rubber bands, or machines, at relatively heavy levels for just 15-20 minutes, twice a week, tells your body you need to maintain muscle mass as part of your life.

Of course, as I lost weight, my mobility increased and I can walk more, do yoga, twist and stretch more, and lift more weight in terms of daily activities, which increases calorie burning, and also health.

Current medical thinking is of the idea that the single greatest cause of illness, including some cancers, is not cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, bad diet, junk foods, but a sedentary life style. 

EVERY DAY YOU NEED TO THINK ABOUT HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR MOBILITY A LITTLE BIT MORE, whether by adding stretching, free exercises like pushups, walking, deep knee bends, yoga, Tai Chi, swimming or bicycling. Increasing mobility improves health, reduces health risks, lowers blood sugar and cholesterol.

Don’t be a fanatic, but just improve your strength and mobility by a tiny bit every day.

When I was young (25) I could bench press over 400 lbs, and did over 300 pushups non-stop.

As of May 10 of this year, I could not do even one pushup without major cheating.  But as a result of weight loss and increasing mobility, I do now 25 every other day and have only been doing them for a week and a half.

In this, I have to thank Swami Chetanananda, who told me exactly this: every day I have to move a little more and think about ways to increase my mobility and flexibility as part of an overall fitness program. Swamiji calls his Ashram the Movement Center, and increasing movement is a goal both in spiritual work and in health.

BUT I AM NOT DOING CARDIO WORK.  IT IS A USELESS WASTE OF TIME AND EFFORT.
The increasing mobility and movement came as a secondary result of weight loss.  I was able to move more without pain having lost 30 and 40 lbs of fat.  I was able to be more flexible, and the more mobile and flexible I got, the more I wanted more mobility.  I never consciously exercised during those five months except the two-times-a-week weight lifting.  All the other increases in exercise were because my body was able to do more, and wanted to do more spontaneously.

MANY ADVAITINS AND BUDDHISTS WHO PRACTICE MEDITATION ON EMPTINESS, OR FOCUS ON SILENCE, THE WITNESS, OR THE ABSOLUTE, TEND TO STOP MOVING, believing that nothing is real, or only the Void or Absolute is important, and they become sedentary sitters and stop moving.

DON’T CHEAT.  Once you get in the swing of counting calories, increasing flexibility and mobility, don’t cheat on the eating with adding sugar or going way over your calorie limit.  Each time you cheat, you weaken the effort.  During the past 5 months, I cheated maybe two days, yesterday was one of them.  I went way over my calorie limit with peanuts and popcorn and feel bloated and immobile today. 

ABSOLUTELY NO SUGAR IN ANY FORM, AND VERY LITTLE WHEAT PRODUCTS. These are high calorie, low protein foods that need to be eliminated.  Maybe twice a week I’ll have a Swiss Cheese sandwich, with 3X 70 calorie slices of cheese, and a single 60 calorie slice of whole wheat bread with low fat mayonnaise, for a total of 300 calories and 26 grams of protein.

ALCOHOL consumption calories need to be factored in.  Alcohol consumption just makes weight loss slower.  I like to have a double brandy every now and again, and that is 260 calories.  That is factored in.  In addition, once in a while I like to have 12 ounces of beer, my choice is Bud ice at 130 calories.

As Bill Maher puts it, he saves his sugar calorie allotment for alcohol.

Bi-WEEKLY CHECK YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE, and watch it drop as you lose weight.  My current blood pressure resting is 115/65 at 196 lbs. (Down from 236 lbs.)


10 October 2014

Two Comments About My Book, Self-Realization and Other Awakenings

I've been reading your book for hours, and when you speak of these different states, you speak of them in a way that I feel their truth; not as an intellectual knowing. I enjoy the approach you take with spirituality as no neglecting any part of experience; identifying with it ALL, both the temporary manifest and the permanent "Para-Brahman." Just thought I would let you know

Tannr


When I first read Edji's book, a whole new world of inner experience opened for me. As a zen student, internal experiences and enlightenment were never talked about. In fact, all experiences were considered distractions from focusing on the root, the Absolute. And awakening was beyond words and concepts so couldn't be talked about and shouldn't be tried because it just led to thinking and more attachments. 

For me, this lack of sharing left me lost in space.

So, I turned to Shamanism looking for maps of my inner landscape, which I did find, but the experiences were all very densely intertwined within a culture that I didn't belong to.

No matter how deeply I entered into that sacred world, I was still a visitor.

Edji's book talked to me about me. I saw myself reflected in his experiences. I viscerally knew what he meant, what he pointed to . He described both the deadness and depression I was then experiencing, and the awakening of energies and life force that I had sometimes felt but was trained to ignore. 

And here he was saying, welcome these experiences, love them, jump into them. And especially.... trust them_ trust your emotions and energies....they are real and trustworthy. I cried through parts of Edji's book with both relief and anger. 

It hit home in my heart so directly and so forcefully, that I knew I desparately needed and wanted this teaching and this teacher. 

And here I am, 10 months later, full of life and love, exploring my Self, my inner sentience as Edji's student. I feel very, very fortunate. 

So...read the book !!! Hahaha !


Syndria

09 October 2014

Dialogue on Manifest Self Versus Witness and Use of the Mind in Seeking

TO ME:

What is your opinion on free will? It seems that all of our thoughts and thought processes are a result of experiences, however which thought processes become dominant is a result of where our attention goes, so I guess the question of free will boils down to whether we have control over attention. I am inclined to say attention is something we have complete control over, though one could argue that past experiences could form complex thought patterns that would lead one ultimately to make decisions based on where to focus attention, for shouldn't a decision on where to put attention precede where attention is placed? Therefore, does a complex array of subconscious thoughts and ultimately past experienced decide where attention is placed?

ED’S RESPONSE:

Are you able to "feel" how far such questioning is from being you?  It is only logic, theorems.

You know yourself by feeling Self, not by thinking.  You have to stop all such useless thinking about philosophy and only dwell in your sense of Self, I Am.

You can never awaken to who you are on any level—and there are many—until you let go of the goal of intellectual understanding.  There is a knowing far more profound than that of the mind, and that is where I am taking you.

TO ME:

I am able to feel it, yes. I have been pondering the question for a while and I figured asking someone who has experienced the states you have may shed some light on the subject.

When you say dwell in sense of self, I do that already, but I recognize simultaneously there is an even more subtle perception that is watching this happen, and then I usually find that to continue to acknowledge the subtler perception is to perpetuate the never ending process of objectifying subjectivity, and so at that point all thinking just stops and I abide in that non-thinking state. At this point, what should I do?

Ed’S RESPONSE:


Abide in the I Am.  That will lead you to the Manifest Self--Atman.

Leave the subject alone for now.

Eventually the two come together as one, but first know the Manifest Self of energies, lovee, bliss, and all of the emotions, positive and negative.

At this point the Witness is only a distraction.

Do not dwell in emptiness or no thought.  It is easy to get lost there and accomplish nothing.

07 October 2014

Steve Transitions From the Manifest Self (I AM) to Observer and Back--a good description

Edji,  Great experience this morning.....I could actually feel and experience the transition from being in the  I AM  into the Observer.   It was so gradual and smooth almost like the Sun moving in the sky....barely perceptible but truly an amazing transition.....slowly blinking an eye...but a transformation into a different more tranquil dimension.  Then transitioning back into all the feeling and emotion of life.

Like being  at a concert and feeling like I Am the music, the notes all the octaves and harmony and then slowly transitioning to being the complete theater, roof, seats, music...just everything and watching from not one spot but from everywhere.  Watching the music sailing into me like a river just flowing and meandering wherever....not being tied into the feelings.

God, that Carly is contagious and such a flow of rainbows of Grace.

A Devilish Guru Oversees his Vast Dominion



A new, thinner Ed.

Only 30 lbs. to go.

One advantage of years of meditation is that you develop an iron will that prevails in dieting, exercising, and focus.  Almost 40 lb. weight loss in five months.

Carly continues to grow in knowledge and love

Thank you so much. 

I love this creation I love knowing I co create my life I love that not one person can be responsible for my life but me. I love knowing that what I focus on becomes my reality. I love how meaningless words are. I love that the non-physical communicates by vibrations, energy. I love this human experience because just being alive and experiencing is my only true purpose.  I love my human body how it interprets the non physical, interprets feelings. I love I am not only my feelings and that they just guide me. I love knowing there is a source that is everything was always everything and will always be everything and nothing al at once. I love it's insane intelligence.  I love the formula for creating.  I love my life. 

How lucky am I that I get to be a part of the greatest show ever. I was picked to be the vehicle that God or the source uses to experience itself, myself. My personality I feel goes on, to keep learning and experiencing for eternity :)

I'm so grateful  I desire to know myself and to self realize. I noticed sadness and love are the same feeling, just different words to make meaning and empowerment. Also rage and hate seems to feel the same too!

I laugh at plans now. I just watch and observe and try to be a part of the flow. I notice when I'm happy I feel connected and when I'm depressed or frustrated I feel disconnected. So my feelings tell me where I am at, not who I am!

I love u.


Carly

MY RESPONSE:

Yes Carly, now you have come alive to accepting your physicality as long as it is present.  Joyful acceptance of your life-embodied.

Yes, all emotions are essentially the same, forces and energies within the Subtle Body that affect the physical body and vice-versa.  They are messages between the two and to the ultimate witness who watches.

FROM THE ABSOLUTE BEYOND NOTHINGNESS, I HAVE COME ALIVE!!!!

EMAIL TO ME:

Hi Ed!

I'm having a bit of trouble, but first I will give you some background information…

I've been practicing this for years unknowingly, as you did as a child. When I first found the " I AM-ness" I thought I had reached enlightenment. However over the course of a few months of continued practice, I realized that there is an awareness watching all of this happen; watching the I AM be, and therefore there is something more fundamental than the I am-ness.

However, I feel myself searching. I can't get over the problem: I know that I am the ultimate subject. I feel that and I have felt it before, but if that is the truth of who I am, then who is this person seeking the truth? Who is the person even asking that question?
Some days I will be tormented by this sort of thought process all day, spending hours intensely thinking, and sometimes it leads to spontaneous Samadhi, but it is inconsistent and unsustainable…

I also find myself beginning to reject values of the self. For instance, I am beginning to find my mind rejecting or suppressing being excited or feeling lust or even feeling affection or interest or expressing creativity. However as soon as it happens, I recognize that rejection - the inclination to suppress or resist those things - as simply another form, no different than the original impulse itself. I suppose I am confused, but to even say that is confusing, for I cannot help but wonder who is confused, and then, who is the one wondering who is confused?… Please help! I'm becoming exhausted from this constant conceptual circle.


MY RESPONSE:

Dear W.

You truly understand: You are both the manifest Self, the I Am, Atman, and also the Witness, the Absolute, Parabrahman.

So what is the problem?

You are both!!

As long as you are alive in your body you will be the Manifest Self, living, emotional, desiring, rejecting, thinking, feeling, working, struggling, and also potentially in endless bliss and joy knowing you are God incarnated into a body.

You are also Shiva, he who witnesses all this, and who is not touched by any of the Play of Consciousness.  You have not identified with that part of you yet, and it bothers you, thinking that is more real than your present body/mind/existential state.

All you have to do is when the doubt and tension arises and the strong need to search for anything, rather than just search, go into the doubt and tension that is driving you to search.  Go into that pressure, accept the feeling, love it, let it into your heart and gradually you will realize that all of this is you, both the manifest and the Absolute.  So just enjoy both.

Feel the divine energies arise in you as bliss, struggle, and pain, then settle downwards into emptiness and bliss again. Feel the show totally; exalt in the energies of the Life Force, and know you are ALSO THAT which witnesses all.

You cannot find THAT; you can only BE That, and you are always THAT already.  But THAT is being offered the ability to come alive for a brief period of time, whether 15 years for a cat, or 90 for a human.  

Think of it this way:  You as the Unmoving, Absolute, Witness has come alive briefly.  It is up to you to know this and then thrive as a Life Form while your body is alive.


Ed

03 October 2014

Witness and Self

What is happening here.?

When I focus on going into I AM,  usually I feel like I'm there.   Aware from where ever that is. Not watching it happen or  observing I AM .

But all day today,  instead of sinking into my heart center,  my  sense of awareness is popping up into my head , third eye, where the sense of lighted consciousness is.   The light is familiar to me from zen,  but hasn't  pulled me in lately.

I observe from there down at my heart,  and sense my consciousness sinking into the heart center and below. Finally resting in subtle body behind my physical back. That is often the place I rests, but not always.

But its strange feeling remote, just observing, while also sensing the connection and sensation of being in I AM. But not being in it.  My awareness is watching I AM

Feels schizoid;  sensation and  awareness separate With awareness observing .    Sensation being felt.

Who's feeling the sensation and aware of awareness?

It feels like my body feels I AM  and awareness is watching.

I don't like it.   If I stay there long enough,  the light expands out completely until everything disappears into just the lighted field.   No sensation, just light.

This has happened over and over, no matter how hard I try to stay with the I AM   I hate it. !!!

ED'S RESPONSE:

Syndria, it is all you.  The Witness is where Nisargadatta wants you to go, and the I Am is the Atman, energy and sentience together.

All these are what I call rooms in the spiritual mansion.  Also here find Emptiness--the Void, the lighted field which fills the void, find also bliss, grace, deep sacred humility, various levels of the I Am sensation terminating in Turiya, Satchitananda, AKA as Atman.

These are all parts of you.  After you have visited all of them enough, you own them all.  You accept them all as you as well as the day-to-day living as an ordinary, "unrealized" person that has moved 360 from knowing nothing, to knowing Emptiness and Nothingness, then all all of the magical, blissful, and energetic states, then back to Syndria drinking tea with a Zen master, also drinking tea and farting. (Old Zen masters do that.)

30 September 2014

Carly Wakes Up and Comes Alive

Carly and I spent a day together a year ago. We had a great time at Coffee Bean and elsewhere.  What a change during the last year of constant practice.

I'm so happy I'm giddy. What an amazing thing life is! You ready for this?....I love myself I saw there is only myself I am you as well! Oh I love it Edji I love it all! When I trickled down back into my body the bliss was so strong I cried from a place that was from the beginning of time, from the soul, tears of complete joy, sorrow, love, forgiveness...there is only the now. THAT BEAUTIFUL SORCE  of all things wants to create I was in the nothing, it was non physical.

I have no eyes to see, no ears to hear it was nothing but a presence with unbelievable intelligence. Questions I had answered. I experienced the no duality only one I can't believe how amazing the workings of this creation this lovely source energy loves to create.
Carly

Oh Edji I'm in love with nothing  on the end of it just love. I want to be that way always but this body has such deep seeded habits and I saw thoughts geometric shapes vibrations. I love u Edji; I love me; I love all♡; I pray my body won't allow me to forget.

I'm happy I don't exist but in the mind of this super intelligence-- how amazing that it thought of me. I'm lucky to be a part of this magnificent mental construct, and that I am human so I am able to feel and interpret  feelings and make the non physical physical, and blessed to be a co creator in all of it.) I see how the mind can be our biggest enemy and my reactions to it my reality.

Carly

29 September 2014

Syndria Strikes Again, Liking Our Advaita/Tantric Approach

Hi glad to hear about your changes in muscle pain. Our relationship to our own emotions is so much deeper than psychology takes us.    

Amazing changes are going on.    And just by being in and surrendering to pleasure and pain.    I still have the vibrating sense of bliss stream going on subtlely under everything.

And Charley was a remarkable teacher by example.

The interpenetrating of emotions, energies and IAM Is revealing itself to be immense.      I just get more and more curious and longing to spend all my time In IAM.    

The Kali  chanting I'm doing causes a swirl of realities dancing,   Kali is with me,  then in me, then I am in her,  we are together then separate then Kali/I are the same.     A true dance.   

In awe.    That's where I am.    All day and night long. 

You and Shakti have knocked me upside down and inside out  a hundred times in 10 months.

My middle is churning with energy.  After being a black void for years.    

I have pass
ed by a doubt marker this week.    My encountering my Self in the Divine Mother's various guises,  I  feel  at home, in home.  Where I belong.

For 2 hours  I was Kali.  IAM Kali.   I was so at home.     I felt that need to bow down at her feet/ my feet.     Words don't cut it..   I have to surrender my food anxieties and confusions up to her.    And find strength through her instead of fat in terms of feeling safe.

And I talked more with Faisal.    We 're so alike energetically,  at least in some ways..    Kind of crazy.

As I listen to your changes, it feels like your way of helping yourself and others through your energy body Is revealing itself to you through your lung, your sickness, Charley's illness.  fired.

Your getting another degree, this time in Divinity.

I have no idea what is coming next and I feel freed by that.   No need to imagine, stress think, plan.    Mother is already doing it.


CHARLEY'S DEATH AND A CURE FOR FIBROMYALGIA-LIKE NEUROLOGICAL DISORDERS

CHARLEY’S DEATH IS CHANGING ME

During the last 25 years, Kerima and I have had 14 cats die on us.  Some were rescued when they were already quite old, many we got as kittens.  Not all the deaths were hard on us, but a few were very hard.

The hardest are when your favorite cats die young.  Gopi, my most favorite cat of all time died after surgery to remove a large cancerous mass in her intestines.  Her diagnosis and death came within a week of each other. I shut down a lot in every way after her death nine years ago for about six months.

But each death now is both easier and harder.  Easier in that it has happened many times before, and you get used to the cycle of grief and loss, but harder because I am far more open now to experiencing everything.

This time, Charley’s death hit me so hard it through me back into the Witness, where I was nothing but pure appearance.  I was No Thing, just the delight at everything that appeared before me.  Nothing was real, just appearance, and so was I.

Charley’s death at age 6 years and 7 months was traumatic because it was so premature and we both took such pains taking care of him for the last 4 months. Caretakers always bond more closely with their patients, and he was more than a patient.  Charley was the embodiment of peace, majesty, beauty, and loving kindness.  He did not play roughly like his brothers.  He was gentle and sweet.  As many vets have told me, the good die young.

But his death had me pondering again as to what happens to the Life Force when the body dies.

The two predominant Eastern theories are that a soul, or skanda bundle continue on in an afterlife, to be reborn after a period.  The second theory is that nothing remains.  All is just Shiva learning about the Play of Consciousness through us, his individual instruments for exploration, from bacteria, to insects, to birds, cats, and mankind. 

In this view, we are probes learning about Consciousness from a trillion embodied sentient beings, allowing the Source to gain knowledge and when the individual dies, there just is knowledge in Shiva of its past existence.

Probably both theories are bullshit, fairy tales to make us feel better about life and death.

So, I really don’t know.  But Charley’s death has once again shown me the magic of each sentient beings existence. How we should worship sentience in ourselves and in others, honoring how rare it is for matter to have even temporary existence as a living, loving, hurting sentient being.

I was taken though how merely pondering the issue of life and death, took me back to the pure Witness state of profound nothingness except pure appearance, with no pain, not grief, no love, but a very alive existence as appearance only. There, there was nothing to do, no one to take care of, no one to love or hate.  Just a lighted happiness with no emotions whatsoever.

But one more thing Charley’s death brought to me.

In 1986 I was diagnosed with Myofacitis, a chronic muscle pain condition due to hyperactive nervous system, and a regional version of Fibromyalgia.  In my youth I had been a weight lifter and athlete.  I had been able to bench press over 400 lbs, do hundreds of pushups, over 30 chin ups, and run 8 miles in about an hour.  I felt this facitis, was a result of all the accumulated muscle trauma, leaving me with a stiff body and muscles. Like Robert Adams, I had a neurological disorder.


Charley’s death brought a relaxation inside me such that the disorder within me is presenting itself as a total body syndrome no longer in the background, but in the forefront.  I AM is becoming the stiffness, accepting it, loving it, taking it in and healing me.  I have no idea how long this process will take, but the cure is happening now.


26 September 2014

PLEASE HELP ME TO HELP YOU

If you like what I am saying, or you think it is helping you, or you attend our Sunday Satsangs, please consider donating something with the Paypal link to the right.  Donations are tax deductable, as We Are Sentience is a 501c3 California Charitable Non-Profit, and help support my work teaching, counseling, and animal rescue work, also explained on the side of this blog.

Everything is free.  Download my book from my website or any of the other books, the blog is free, Satsang is free.  

I want only that which comes freely from your heart.

Charley died today, peacefully at 2:55 PM

Day before yesterday Charley looked at me differently.  Intently, as he always did, but differently.  I felt he was telling me that he is tired of the struggle to eat and the chronic pain.

Then yesterday he abruptly stopped eating and wanted to be alone, so, miraculously, he jumped up again to the top cabinet in the kitchen, and just looked down and watched us. He still had a lot of spunk left in him said the vet.

Today we gave him a quadruple does of the narcotic pain relief medication Bupronorphine, and another whose name I forgot a couple of hours before we took him to the vet

The vet was very kind as usual, and we talked to him about what he thought, and he was agreed there was no need to allow him to suffer anymore.

But Charley did not want to leave us.  He was very affectionate, rubbing against our hands and legs and looking very intently into our eyes.  There was no fear or anxiety of any sort in him.  It was almost as if he knew what was going on or accented to it.

He was given an injection of an anesthetic that put him into a twilight sleep, and then a catheter was inserted because he had tiny veins.  After the anesthetic took full effect, he was given the "pink juice," Pentabaratol (sp?) and he died in Kerima's arms with me holding his head. Kerima sobbed loudly and I more silently.  We stayed with Charley's body for 10 minutes or so and left.

I feel grief, sadness, and powerless.  If we had another $6,000 we could have given im surgery to partially remove the tumor and his eye, followed by precise radiation that could have given him an additional 7-9 months of life.  But we didn't have it. So there is a sense of failure on our parts at not having been good-enough parents.

But the grief is always permeated with Emptiness, taking the sting of his death away, while yet the remaining grief moves freely through me like an old friend who comforts me with peace and rest, taking me deep inside.

Kerima is still in the other room crying. 

Down to Earth, No Bullshit Teachings

My way of teaching is to be as real as possible, as open as possible, as truth-telling as possible, and as ordinary as possible so that I am approachable to all.

I know many want teachers who are quiet, unengaged, aloof, and speak slowly as if each word should be taken as God speaking. I am not for you. That often is only a guru-role hiding lack of completion.

I emphasize a spirituality of embodied humanity; God and I are sometimes one, and often partners in negotiating life. I am not interested in creating Jnanis who hold the world and Self are not real. To me that is only a partial understanding.

I am more interested in creating saints who embody great love, compassion, self-love, and self-acceptance, who can go a long way towards reducing suffering in the world.

My way is exciting, filled with love, energies, service, and surrender, but also with a complete ability to feel and accept any pain, grief, depression, fear or anger; completely open to life and the levels of Consciousness. To experience great heights of bliss, energies, power, grace, and light, you need to be able to experience and thrive in the depths of negativity and sorrow; in the end they are all the same. Bliss underlies and interpenetrates all states, as does Emptiness.

The Void is alive and well, filled with YOU!

25 September 2014

Charley has been communicating with me for the last day

Charley is tired.  Today, for the first day, he has refused to eat.  He just looks at me without moving or blinking.  His demeanor says he is tired of fighting to eat, the apparent pain, his blindness, and increasing apparent confusion.

I saw the resignation in his face yesterday, not so much that he wants to die, but that he is suffering and very tired of fighting the fight to stay alive.

Tomorrow at 2:30 we have a vet appointment.

1976 Photo of Maezumi Roshi and Seung Sahn Soen Sa.

Maezumi far right, Seung Sah next to him, circa 1976
I studied with Maezumi Roshi (Right) from 1971 to about 1977. He was the most emotionally open Zen Master I ever met.  I was with Seung Sahn from about 1975 to 1981 although we fought a lot.

Seung Sahn mastered the art of expressing anger and forcefulness. No modesty there.  he was not afraid to stand out in any setting, therefore created many Zen Centers all over the world, but with very simplistic teachings he hoped would survive his death.

Maezumi was highly intelligent, sensitive, and mastered the art of being contrite, admitting his guilt in many areas of his life and teaching, being truly humble, and just a lovely man.

Had I known then what I know now, I would have moved into Maezumi's center, but I had incorrect ideas of what a spiritual teacher should be like.

I should say that every Zen master I met was more open to life as a human than any Advaita teacher, all who deemed the world was not real because all phenomena were temporary and not self-caused.

24 September 2014

A Long Quote from Michael Hall, a Psychologist, Well Summarizing My Own Anti-Zombie Teachings

Attachment to Emptiness

        In his 4/10/2013 webcast, Adyashanti addresses in a beautiful, clear, and direct manner the allure of emptiness and the need to move through this stage of enlightenment. Adyashanti speaks of the attachment to emptiness. The spiritual path is limitless, and every single step along the way has potential pitfalls. These difficulties arise in the form of attachments or aversions. 

I have spoken of the attachment to emptiness as dwelling in the ‘cave of nonduality’. Once the silence and peace of this absolute emptiness is experienced, it can be enticing, particularly to those who have experienced enormous suffering and trauma in this life. In emptiness there is no separation and hence no suffering. If the goal is the end of suffering, then emptiness is your ticket. Without the sense of self-identity, there can be no suffering as there is no separation. No separation means there is no comparison of what is with what isn’t. Without this comparing process, nothing is seen as lacking. There is neither joy nor the absence of joy. There is no passion, no desire, no fear, no pain of loss, no excitement, and no despair. Obviously meaningful relationships of all kinds are avoided or diminished, as relationships have typically been a source of suffering. 

The same can be said for all other forms of engagement in the world. Responsibility is avoided like the plague. The internal experience of emptiness is of a quiet contentment. People who have arrived at this deep, internally focused peacefulness appear emotionally flat to those not in the cave. There is often very little externally focused activity of any kind. Very little productive work is accomplished. Effort of all kinds is strenuously avoided as a sign of ego-based striving. 

A telltale sign of the depth of attachment to this stillness and emotional numbing is the ferocious response that occurs when an attempt is made to arouse them from their slumbers. The cave of nonduality is a deeply restful way station for the weary spiritual traveler, and abiding there a while is understandable and beneficial. The problem is mistaking a stage of the journey for the end of the journey.

After a deep spiritual realization, it is normal, even predictable to land hard in the cave of nonduality. Many years can pass quietly as the seeker rests, mistakenly assuming that the journey has ended. From my observations and experiences, it is almost impossible for the person (who no longer believes themselves to be a person) to recognize how stuck they are without some external assistance. This is where a trusted teacher who has successfully exited the cave and reengaged with the messy, unpredictable ordinary world is not only invaluable, but usually absolutely necessary. The discontent that drove the seeker to pursue self-realization with the passion required to awaken to an aspect of their true nature has ceased. Extinction is the nature of nonduality. There is no internal dissatisfaction left to motivate movement and action. What then is the motivation to leave the cave and reengage with the world of suffering and chaos, of desire and lack?

The only motivation I can find is a deep sense of compassion born of the experiential realization of both unity and separateness. Although my personal suffering may have ended in the cave of emptiness, a quick peek outside reveals an entire world of hurt. The instant that we wade into this morass of suffering, previously hidden attachments and aversions are activated and available for attention and release. As long as we stay safely within the cave, we can fool our self into thinking that we are ‘done’. As long as meaningful engagement with life and real responsibility are carefully avoided, we can maintain our carefully cultivated inner state of peace and contentment. The avoidance of engagement becomes the spiritually rationalized default setting. How can reengagement with the messy world be a good idea when it activates so many unresolved conflicts? This can be an especially delicate time for the spiritual aspirant who, having finally found peace, is asked to surrender it.

Many are called but few are chosen. If there is a willingness and access to accurate teaching, the rested seeker may gather up their few remaining possessions and begin the longest and most arduous portion of the path. The ordinary world of duality is engaged, but now it is intuitively understood from the aspect of emptiness, making all experience radically different. One of the last and most difficult attachments that must be released is the attachment to emptiness. The full engagement with ordinary life that is ultimately realized is beautifully depicted in the tenth ox-herding picture, where our fully liberated sage is completely at home in the world, demonstrating absolute freedom embodied as an individual and unique human being. 

MY RESPONSE:

Over and over I have been hearing from people who have practices self-inquiry, or been students of Ramana, Robert Adams, or Nisargadatta, that after months or years of such meditation they have fallen into deep depression.

Reading Robert, Ramana, or Nisargadatta, they hear that the self and the world are both unreal or empty of meaning and self-creation.  So, they say to themselves, "What is the point of practice, meditation, etc.?  What is the point of anything, and life leaves them, draining away emotions and joy, and they are caught in emptiness, Nothingness, and dry out. Some even commit suicide.

I specialize in rescuing these depressed, lonely, loveless, lifeless beings who listened to Ramana or Robert and practiced self-inquiry the wrong way.

Neither Robert Adams, nor Ramana ever themselves practices self-inquiry. Self-inquiry as they describe it is deadening.

Real self-inquiry is not finding the origin or source of the I-thought, but finding the sense of I Am, the feeling of being alive and present,  and then dwelling there.  When you find the I-feeling, just rest in it.  More than that, love it.  Speak to it.  Accept it into you, the Witness.  Fill the emptiness more and more by an awakening of the I Am sensation into a totally energetic presence.

The process is finding the I Am sense. Abide there. Love the I Am sense.  Take it into your heart. Accept all that arises within while dwelling in the I Am, as you, whether joy, bliss, or depression and fear.  It is all you.

There are at least three ways to awaken, by passing through various regions of the Self: the emotional body; the energetic body; or by love and devotion.

The most difficult in terms of "drama" is the emotional body route.  The easiest is through love and devotion, but not many are capable of the depth of love necessary.  But all three paths are interdependent.  Success at any of the three helps with success on the other two paths. Opening emotionally, especially through love, allows a greater opening to the energy body, and a continued deepening allows a point of explosive Sef-Realization of the Manifest Self, the Atman, or the duality of God in Man incarnate.

This is the antidote to the seeker of the transcendental who becomes lost in nothingness, heaviness, emotionlessness, and no meaning.  The is the cure for the spiritual Zombie. Practicing my way of self-inquiry is juicy, messy, and filled with the Life-Force, thus is also a vaccine against the Zombie Apocolypse.

Steve Speaks to Rajiv

Rajiv, You have to come back to the World.
Enlightenment is a trilogy: The first is No Mind, Emptiness, Thoughtless, Living in the Void
The second is Love, Compassion, Feeling, Emotions, Your Humanity alive and vibrant, Every moment exciting, creative and full of Wonder and Bliss. Depth, Valleys, Peaks and Expansion. Unsurpassed beauty.
The third is Absolute Compassion for all sentient beings and taking the suffering of others right into your Heart, Love in Action.
Edji is a Master who teaches all three just like Atisha taught.....rare teachers and a blessing on Humanity.
I can see you are just living Empty in the Void of nothingness, a state of depression, via negativity, Buddhas path. How else could you attack your Teacher and Guru? Your Heart is not shining with Happiness. The deep loving smile is not on your face. You look like a stone.
Rajiv, let Edji help you to bring a new Joy into your life. Let yourself breath in Love, live in Love, see how green the grass really is, see how luminous and wondrous all existence is, see the being in the tree and talk to it. Just let God shine right through you unto others. Give yourself the blessing of Emotion and Feelings. Be an innocent child in awe of life.
Your base will always be in the Void but you can also allow yourself many other dimensions-come alive, bring that Humanity with you. The Void alone is just an escape FROM Life.
Total Self-Realization is an escape into and for Total Life Being and Existence.
You couldn't criticize your Teacher if your Heart was full of Love. How dare you put down your Guru.
Bring your Emotion and Feeling back. Finish the trilogy. Your smart and brave enough to complete the cycle.
Reclaim all the territory, become colorful, become the whole spectrum of the Rainbow and every exploding note in the Music.
I see a world of difference between living in the Void and Living with all your humanity (Edji's Teachings). Kind of like chickens in a Factory farm locked into a small Battery cage where they can never stand up, never spread their wings and never walk around. Where as the Free Range Chicken gets to roam the farm, dig up the dirt, rip around the yard, have fun, let the rain fall on his head...just pure freedom and joy. Did you really ever feel the difference between a prisoner and a Free man? Same difference between a dark room and a sunlit room. Where would you and all your friends rather be?
Rajiv, we all Love you, come back, listen to Edji, Edji will never give up on you and he will open up new wonders that will truly make you a Sage. Finish your Path.

23 September 2014

Email from Steve to me...no more TV!

Swamiji Sri Edji,       I want to thank you from the deepest part of my heart for allowing me to find you.

I hope their are 1000 steps on this path because each step is so much more wonderful than the last...I just can't believe it. This awareness  of plants, animals, the cosmos, the grass, music and  a  gang of wasps. 
 
I spent the day feeding honey and cranberries to the bees and just marveled at how they interacted with each other and the fly's and ants that wanted  some of that sugar.  Then all of a sudden one of the wasps flew up  and landed on my book...thanking me for the 'treats' and depositing a little of that gold on the page....that was my  'treat'  from him. They knew I was watching them. 

And to think this was always ...right in front of my nose.  

Just watched 'Fairy Tale -  A true story'  about two children and the fairies that became part of their lives.  Reminds me of childhood and all the wonders that adults deny....well its all coming back and more so.

Each day is a wonder.  Like coming out of a long hang-over.

Our TV is going out and its not going to be replaced as the movies in the yard and daily  life are so much better.

Love ya Edji,  steve

20 September 2014

I HAVE NOT ABANDONED ROBERT, RAMANA, OR NISARGADATTA

I have just added an emphasis on Love to their emphasis on Knowledge (Jnan). This makes the path juicier and more human-focused.  I call this the incarnational or devotional aspect of spirituality.

Many people have left our Sangha because they feel I have abandoned Robert and Ramana.  That is simply, totally false.  I have just added an emphasis on Bhaktic introspection of the I Am sensation to activate the Subtle Body energies and the emotional body energies which adds powedr to anyone’s attempt to know themselves.

You see, Nisargadatta started his spiritual practice looking for the I Am sensation, finally found it, and experienced the endless internal energies and bliss he called Krishna Consciousness.  But later in life he entirely abandoned his body and Consciousness and identified with the Witness, the Absolute, Parabrahman.

In my own experience, and watching Robert’s students, Zen students, Muktananda students over the years, practices that emphasize on the visual/knowledge aspect of spirituality cannot touch or resolve depression.

Many of Robert’s students just got caught into an emotionaless Void, or inner emptiness which was devoid of the Life Force, Shakti.  Some committed suicide. Others just remained lifeless or depressed.

With my background of 30 years in psychology, I spent much time exploring, empowering, and learning about the human self, the personal self, especially as taught in the British Object Relations School. Much later I was to learn that actively directing love to aspects of that inner personal Self, which was called the Inner Child during the 1970s and 1980s, allowed access to buried emotions, memories, anger, jealousy, and most importantly, to fear, grief, and depression.

I find that a majority of those who practice Self-Inquiry in the way taught by Robert or Ramana results in a stabilized but unresolved depression, a huge pool of denied anger, and fear.  These are by-passed and undermine complete realization, or Self-Realization because the power of the personal is missing.  Also, there is little compassion there, because compassion requires openness to the physical and emotional pain of others. Those who have practiced just the direct self-inquiry of Robert and Ramana discount the external world altogether as not touching them, or else say everything is them, but do so from a remote and peaceful emptiness.

Treading down this emotional exploration and integration path should be looked at as following one thread of exploring the I Am, which is closely associated with a separate, parallel thread of the Subtle Body energies, or Shakti.  Many Bhaktis follow this thread backwards to the Self.

But everything I teach centers on Self-Realization by “descending” backwards or downwards through several separate threads or aspects within the experience of I Am.

I call what I teach Incarnational Spirituality, or Devotional Advaita, which is emphasizing the human interpersonal emotions and energies that keep us real, so to speak, keep us in a place we can feel compassion and love, which when turned backwards onto ourselves, will result in the explosive Self-Realization of the divinity, power, and love, that lies within us.  Ramana called this realization of the Self as Atman.  This is purely an energetic/emotional experience that keeps us empathic rather than aloof and distant.

Now, I also still emphasize realization of the Self as the Absolute, parabrahman, but very clearly state that without the continued experience of the personal, love, empathy, the Atman, realization of the Absolute can be very dry and lifeless.

Both paths should be done together.  This makes spirituality more fun, more exciting, less dry, and keeps us involved with mankind.

I have emphasized human love as essential to realization of Atman, but not to realization of the Witness, Parabrahman.

In the end, after having both styles of Self-Realization, of both Atman and Brahman, one KNOWS and one LOVES the Oneness of Atman/Parabrahman unity.