In selflessness you are the Self of all. 

hannahmarymei said: Why is it that the material, non-awakened life is so tempting and easy to fall back into, if the non-material, awakened life is our natural state?

I think it was Ramana Maharshi who said that abiding in peace and harmony is as natural for a self-realized human as delusional habit is natural for the ignorant human. 

The naturalness of the two are actually the same. What is natural? Happiness. Bliss. 

So what is the difference? The saint knows where happiness is to be found while the ordinary human does not. 

The ordinary human feels happiness but mistakes its origin. A kiss from a pretty girl, a stroll on a beautiful day, a glass of scotch and a joint. The ordinary human experiences these pleasures but does not recognize the location and source of the happiness. 

Where is happiness felt? Within. What is the source of that happiness? Existence. 

This cannot be a belief. It must be examined and verified in your own direct experience. 

First we must recognize that no matter how great a pleasure or joy may be, it is never enough. There is never a pinnacle experience of joy that satisfies you for the rest of your life. This is the initial recognition of the many ways in which we unknowingly limit our bliss and happiness. 

Then we must be mindful enough amidst the joy of our typical pleasures to stop and look within and recognize that happiness is being felt and enjoyed within. 

Once you have known the limited nature of material joys and the unlimited nature of existential bliss, there is no more temptation at play. There may be vestiges of habit but no longer is there confusion. 

Material joy is nothing other than limited existential bliss. It is limited by confusion, like confusing moonlight to actually come from the moon. It comes from the sun. Similarly, you shine your bliss onto the material things you enjoy and then mistake those things as the source of your joy. 

The point isn’t drawing distinctions between the material and the awakened but rather unburdening and unlimiting your boundless naturalness of bliss.

"Your constant flight from pain and search for pleasure is a sign of the love you bear for your Self, all I plead with you is this: make love of your Self perfect. Deny yourself nothing — give your Self infinity and eternity and discover that you do not need them; you are beyond." ~ Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

Namaste :) Much love. 

Silence is only frightening to people who are compulsively verbalizing.

William S. Burroughs

silevren said: Can spiritual hinderances be explained through nature? For example, we look to others for acceptance because being part of a group used to be essential to survival? Or we compete with others and want to be "above them" because Alphas were the types of animals who were most likely to survive? If we can accept these things or similar things as true, can we still seek to detach ourselves from them?

"The beginning of illusion is just as unreal as the illusion itself." ~ Nome

All things are already free and unattached. It is only in the mind’s imagination that attachment occurs. It is not an actual occurrence, as if something has caught you. Let go of the pickle and your hand comes out of the pickle jar.

There is no such thing as a spiritual hinderance because nothing hinders the Spirit. The only obstacle to knowing yourself as self-evident eternity is ignorance. 

That ignorance primarily takes the form of misidentification. 

Your question presumes that we are somehow contained or limited by the body and its instincts. Is that really so, in your own experience? You don’t need to become enlightened to transcend your egoic instincts. Daily meditation is enough to do that. 

You’re postulating a reason for ignorance/illusion when in reality no such reason exists because the ignorance doesn’t really exist. Then you ask if it’s still possible to shed ignorance despite this reason. You already know the answer to that because many humans who have come before us stand as examples. One book I’d highly recommend is I Am That by Nisargadatta Maharaj. It’s basically just Q&A with a self-realized human. 

Many people are socially well-adjusted, uncompetitive, and intelligent, and yet they are not enlightened. If those were really the hinderances to the Spirit, then merely overcoming those obstacles would be enough. 

The problem with ignorance is that it is so confusing! It’s not simply a matter of activating the right energies, overcoming the right obstacles, shedding this conditioning, achieve that state of mind, and/or any other method of changing yourself. 

Self-realization or enlightenment is not a change. It is the actual essence of reality and existence. But we see that and mistake it.

"Just as a coil of rope is mistake for a snake, so you are mistaken for the world." ~ The Ashtavakra Gita

So is dropping ignorance really as simple as just doing this or that? 

If you mistake a rope for a snake then any perspective regarding a snake is meaningless. You cannot make the snake into a rope. You don’t need a snake-handler or to speak parseltongue. You need to shine the light of your awareness upon the snake to find out if that is what it really is. 

That is the essential point of spiritual practice: Being discovering how unlimited Being truly is. 

You experience the body and the mind but neither the body nor the mind experiences you. It is helpful to tame the body-mind so as to become more capable of expressing the inexpressible beauty of the Soul. But changes to the body and mind are not the saving nor the limiting factor when it comes to uprooting illusion. 

It comes down to awareness. It doesn’t matter how long a room has been dark. Shine a light and the darkness is gone, instantly. The contents of the room are of little consequence. 

Namaste sis :) Much love

adamthequeen said: Hey, what is your opinion on transgender/transsexual individuals?

I have no opinion on transgender/sexual individuals. 

Namaste :)

The point in the end is love.

Not who is loving or who is being loved.

Just love.

Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry—all forms of fear—are caused by too much future, and not enough presence. Guilt, regret, resentment, grievances, sadness, bitterness, and all forms of nonforgiveness are caused by too much past, and not enough presence.

Eckhart Tolle

simpleyogi said: I live with my parents, and it often feels like they are both my greatest teachers and last stumbling block before awakening wrapped up in one neat little package.

Which is pretty much how everyone feels when living at home with their parents. :P

For most of us, our egoic sense of self was initially shaped by our family. This is why all of our deep-seated neurosis tends to crop up when we are with family. It is where we tend to be most unconscious and reactive.

I lived at home for two years after college and so I can certainly relate to your current experience. It was my mother, my eldest brother, my sister, her husband, and their four daughters ages 13 and under, all living under one roof. 

There were good times and bad times. I learned a lot about my hangups and about cooperating with others regardless of personal preference. 

My only advice is to cease hinging your concept of awakening to worldly obstacles as well as the linear imagination of time. 

Namaste brother :) Much love. 

Out of nothing, all of this appears. Where it comes from, and where it’s heading, nobody knows.

Nobody knows a thing about it, and yet it’s all given for free. This is an act of pure love.

You don’t need to understand any of these words. Just dissolve into the mystery of it. Melt into what the words are pointing to.

Sacrifice your understanding. It has already served its purpose.

Jeff Foster

Sadhana

There is no conflict among spiritual practices so long as the purpose of spiritual practice is understood. 

You cannot make the Real anymore real nor the False anymore false. 

How real is the Real? Find out. How false is the False? Find out. 

Set aside all assumptions that you know who and what you are. To whom do the notions of Real and Unreal appear? Who and what is that? Without world, society, and subject-object relation/perception: Who are you? 

To the ends of revealing that which is endless, the means must be equally boundless. 

Nothing is true; everything is permitted. 

Are you going to be a madman who falls down? Or a sage who falls up?

Not all who wander are lost. 

As all things are unreal, there is neither defilement nor purity; things are not as they are seen, nor are they otherwise.

The Lankavatara Sutra

pustachio said: I was wondering what your thoughts were on legalization of gay marriage and if you thought it would be beneficial and/or harmful to society. I know this isn't a spiritual or philosophical question, but I still thought it was a controversial topic and would like to hear your opinion on it.

Hey there! I think you’re right that it’s still a controversial topic and that’s something I can’t help but find to be absurd. Here’s what blows my mind about the gay marriage “controversy.”

1. There is no legitimate scientific, societal, or philosophical reason for why gay marriage would be detrimental to society. 

2. SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE.

No one religion holds a monopoly on marriage. The notion that the bible’s definition of marriage—or the bible’s definition of anything—has impact on our policy making is ludicrous and appalling. Plus, you know Jesus was all about Love. Whatever group of hackjobs that wrote the bible couldn’t come close to reflecting Jesus’ wisdom and splendor. 

Given that the United States prides itself on “freedom,” the fact that this is still considered debatable and controversial by the media and government is patently stupid. 

In a time plagued by economic instability, police brutality, a burgeoning gap between the wealthy and poor, and war abroad, I’m going to file opposition to gay marriage under “STFU or GTFO.” 

If our government is more effective at reflecting the ignorance of its people rather than their will, love, and intelligence, then it doesn’t sound like our country will last long. Perhaps it’s only war that keeps us afloat. 

I think we need a new kind of politician besides lawyers and businessmen and economists. I don’t mean instead of such people but the fact that they represent the majority of americans is frightening. Scientists, teachers, doctors, engineers, does no one else feel that those and other kinds of people may be helpful in shaping the structure and future of our country?

I guess anyone with half a brain would prefer spending an afternoon in the park over steering our manic government into harmony. 

Namaste :)

Meditation is the difference between someone telling you “it’s going to be okay” and someone giving you a soul-embracing hug.

debraining said: so there's that quote about holding on to anger like a hot coal... is that the same with confusion? or is confusion supposed to be embraced?

Confusion is like mistaking a rope for a snake then trying to kill it and failing eternally. 

Instead clarity is found when confusion is held within the light of attention and by the very nature of its unrealness, the confusion falls away—having never been real. The snake is seen to be a rope. It was never a snake. And the discovery of the fact that it was a rope was inevitable for anyone who bothered to look. 

Wisdom, patience, and peace are not three different qualities. They are one inter-birthing phenomenon. Each leads to the other. 

When you are patient and persistent with all your attention, confusion stands no chance. It only “survived” in attention’s absence. No thought, no action vanquishes confusion. It is attention. 

That is the crux of why daily meditation is so essential. 

Namaste :)

Is there a difference between happiness and inner peace? Yes. Happiness depends on conditions being perceived as positive; inner peace does not.

Eckhart Tolle