Bill Free interviews Rupert Spira

Bill Free’s Pure Presence Book Club inspires many with the opening book, The Nature of Consciousness by Rupert Spira. You can join the book study here: it’s FREE

Dark Night of the Soul: St. John Of The Cross; translation by Mirabai Starr (Author)

Dark Night of the Soul
While imprisoned in a tiny prison cell for his attempts to reform the Church, sixteenth-century Spanish mystic John of the Cross composed many of his now classic poems of the soul’s longing for God. Written on a scroll smuggled to him by one of his guards, his songs are the ultimate expression of the spiritual seeker’s journey from estranged despair to blissful union with the divine

After escaping his captors, John fell into a state of profound ecstasy and wrote Dark Night of the Soul. Later, he added an important commentary to his poem to guide other searching souls along the arduous path to communion with God. Here, for the first time, a scholar unaffiliated with the Catholic Church has translated this timeless work.

Mirabai Starr, who has studied Buddhism, Hinduism, and Judaism, lends the seeker’s sensibility to John’s powerful text and brings this classic work to the twenty-first century in a brilliant and beautiful rendering

Mirabai Starr – Reading – From “Dark Night of the Soul”

The Way of Shiva and Buddha – Sadhguru 

A questioner wonders, what is the difference between the way of Buddha and of Shiva? Sadhguru answers, it is not a question of difference, rather, of which aspect of Shiva that Buddha explored. He describes the way in which the spine of the spiritual process offered by Shiva was spread through the work of Agastya Muni, Buddha and others.

Gone, but here BY DONNA QUESADA

Donna Quesada, author of The Buddha in the Classroom, reflects on birth, death, losses, and gains.

After our 13 year-old poodle passed away last year, we couldn’t yet bring ourselves to give away his toys. After losing a loved one—whether human or pet—there’s a part of the mind that tricks itself into believing that the deceased one still cares about the material items left behind. Rather than do anything at the time, my husband tucked them away in a plastic storage bin.

The other day when I was putting sheets away, a hedgehog with a gnawed nose caught my eye. Soon I was finding all sorts of treasures—like the old tractor my son used to play with as a child and the tattered old baby blanket he dragged around until he started kindergarten.

There is a tendency to confer a different significance to these two different kinds of discoveries. The first event recalls a beloved pet that has passed away, and in its sense of finality, tends to evoke sadness. The second involves the belongings of a boy who has simply become a man and, as it isn’t shrouded with that same quality of finality, stirs up an agreeable sort of nostalgia.

While each of us will respond in our own personal ways to the challenging events of our lives, much has to do with our interpretations of them. My point is merely to suggest that with greater contemplation, the difference between events, such as the ones I’ve shared, is less distinct than imagined.

When I said goodbye to Simba on that day last year, it was not the same little doggy that once chewed those stuffed animals. And the man that came up to visit last weekend is not the same person that dragged that old blanket around until we’d hid it, 15 years ago. Neither are here, yet, in uncountable ways, both are infinitely here.

Birth and death, birth and death! When my Zen teacher repeats these words, it is because they reveal a great truth about existence. Neither is what we believe it to be. And despite the concrete definitions we accept by convention, neither is definable and neither refers, objectively, to any specific event. Those two words reveal the reality of life’s continuum.

We celebrate the occasion of a baby’s birth as a singular event and we mourn the death of a loved one as a final farewell to life. But both birth and death are present, unceasingly, at every moment of every life. We might only notice when we look back and note all the change that has taken place over time, or when something shakes us to such a degree that we’re thrown into shock — when we’re sure nothing will ever be the same again. But it’s at any moment that nothing will ever be the same again.

I recently saw a documentary about the American spiritual teacher, Ram Dass. In one scene, a young woman shares a dream in which she asks her recently deceased fiancé if she will ever find someone else to love. “This was small peanuts,” he replies, “and when you find that love, I’m part of it.” At this, Ram Dass breaks down at the power of the message and through tears, whispers “Yum, yum, yum, yum.”

As I write, a little terrier with bushy eyebrows nudges my Mac so that he can squeeze himself under it and rest in my lap. And when I’m not home, he sleeps in Simba’s old bed—a symbol of the sense in which Simba passed life on to this little dog we call Marcel. When my husband and I brought him home from the pound, there was never any thought of “replacement.” It would have been superficial to think that way. We will love many times during the course of our lives, our friends, our children, our pets and our lovers—we love them as they change and we love them in different ways at different times. Like the waves in the ocean, each life is beautiful and unique in its own way and like the waves, each will one day dissolve into the sea of life from which it came and from which it was never really separate. One wave rises up and falls and is succeeded by the next. It is a never-ending continuation.

When a loved one passes away, we need to fill something in, where it says, “time of death.” But death happens in stages. I remember the day I got the call about my grandmother. Her heart had finally stopped. But in a very real sense, she had already been lost to us for many years. The mental and physical decline happened in imperceptible steps, but it was too subtle and we are both too distracted and too reluctant to notice.

I refold some of the sheets in the storage shed and reflect on this process. When did that sweet doggy stop chewing these toys? And my beloved grandmother—could I name the day when she first stopped recognizing me?

We draw a thick black line between birth and death, as we draw lines through all of reality. But, like lines drawn in sand, they’re arbitrary, sketchy lines. Now here, now there, and the waves of time wash them away. After a lifetime of seeing the world in segments, the divisions seem just as real as the sun shining in our eyes: mind and body, right and wrong, east and west, humanity and nature.

But life and death, in reality, form a continuum, like a round of voices in mellifluous harmony, where one voice disappears into another, and the break is indiscernible. When did you become an adult? On the day of some random demarcation called a birthday? Or, similarly, when did you become a painter, or a doctor—at some point during those long hours in Urgent Care as an exhausted intern? After passing the most monstrous exams? After drawing blood for the first time? After saving a life for the first time? How do you know when you’ve saved a life? Maybe we’ve all saved a life.

Where do we ever draw the line?

Source: Lions Roar

Are Psychic Powers and Telepathy Real? Dr. Devi Shetty with Sadhguru

Standing in the Fire of Longing: Mirabai Starr

Published on Oct 27, 2017

Mirabai Starr, who received critical acclaim for her translations of St. John of the Cross, St. Teresa of Avila and Julian of Norwich, shares her experiences of personal loss and what she has learned from her experience as a bereavement counselor and from her involvement with the writings of the mystics of Christianity, Judaism and Islam.


Real Relationships in a Virtual World by Ruth Wilson

October 26, 2017
How to create deeper connections in a virtual workplace.

I retired from teaching a number of years ago and now work with a non-profit organization where everything is done in a virtual environment. This was a new experience for me. I knew from the beginning that the technical aspects of the virtual workplace would be challenging. I had a lot to learn about teleconferencing and webinars, storing information in a cloud, and using Dropbox and virtual folders instead of file cabinets and manila folders. What I didn’t anticipate was the aloneness I felt. While the internet and world wide web are quite efficient in connecting us across time, miles, and languages, they come with the challenge of staying connected at deeper levels.

I appreciate the way our computers can to talk to each other; but the world wide web remains a service, not a team of people. The internet can never be a replacement for face-to-face contact. Some organizations look for ways to make the virtual working environment more personal. Several months ago, the team I work with decided to develop a “values statement” as a reminder that, while our work place is virtual, the people we work with aren’t.

We devoted several of our bi-weekly meetings to developing our values statement. We started by each sharing one personal value and briefly describing how we bring this value to our work. Examples of personal values include honesty, enthusiasm, innovation, respect, and happiness. From this list of personal values, we developed our values statement: “We invest in our team to spur personal growth and excellence in a culture of fun, innovation, respect, passion and commitment to a common goal.” I like the way this statement promotes both personal growth and excellence in our work as a team.

We then initiated several practices to help us live our values. For staying connected on a personal level, we tried using google hangout for monthly “happy hours.” Different time zones and people’s varied schedules made this difficult for everyone to participate, so we switched to a different format. We now start our staff meetings with a brief sharing of “news and celebrations.” This sharing has varied from celebrating personal and professional accomplishments to announcements about getting a new puppy. We’ve also shared information about books we’re reading and places we’ve visited. We recently instituted a “Weekly Team Brief”—an online newsletter to helps us share and stay informed of any new developments in our respective initiatives.

I’ve now worked in a virtual environment for over a year. I still miss the face-to-face interactions, but I no longer feel isolated. I value the relationships I have with my team members and continue to invest time and energy in keeping these relationships strong over time. While the keys to meaningful relationships span the “in person” and virtual worlds, I’ve found they become even more critical when using technology to communicate. I’ve developed a few reminders to help me stay real and personal in a virtual world.

I call these the “three R’s”—reach out, respond, request.

1. Reach out to stay connected. While I work remotely and have siblings and daughters living a distance from me, I make a point of reaching out to team members and families frequently. It’s sometimes just a “checking in” with a short email, but I also make a point of calling fairly often. A real conversation, I find, strengthens a relationship more than email threads.

2 Respond with respect and warmth. We all know that a true conversation involves both listening and speaking—that without the listening, there is no real conversation. With each email I receive from a colleague, friend, or family member, I try to engage a listening ear before responding. To me, listening is a form of respect. I also try to include a touch of warmth in my response. After all, it’s a person—not a machine—that I’m responding to. Finally, I’ll add a spark if this feels appropriate. By spark, I mean something interesting or an element of humor. I avoid overdoing this, as there are no visual cues to show me how the recipient is feeling.

3. Request the opinions and support of others. People who work remotely often take pride in their independence and ability to figure things out on their own. They tend to avoid “bothering” others on the team. Yet, we should never be afraid to ask for advice and help. The entire team and individuals on the team are usually energized by supporting each other.
I now feel connected with my team members in both a professional and personal way. Each one means more to me than the role they play in the organization. While our workplace remains virtual, the relationships are real.

Time to Stand Up: An Engaged Buddhist Manifesto for Our Earth — The Buddha’s Life and Message through Feminine Eyes (Sacred Activism) by Thanissara (Author)

Time to Stand Up retells the story of the historical Buddha, one of the greatest sacred activists of all time, as a practical human being whose teachings of freedom from suffering are more relevant than ever in this time of global peril. Evolving onward from the patriarchal template of spiritual warriors and their quests, former nun Thanissara explores awakening from within a feminine view where the archetypes of lover and nurturer are placed as central and essential for a sustainable world.

Vital is an investigation into the pinnacle of Buddhist practice, the realization of the “liberated heart.” Thanissara questions the narrative of “transcendence” and invites us into the lived reality of our deepest heart as it guides our journey of healing, reclamation, and redemption. As the book unfolds, the author examines traditional Buddhism–often fraught with gender discrimination–and asks the important question, “Can Buddhist schools, overly attached to hierarchal power structures, and often divorced from the radical and free inquiry exemplified by the Buddha, truly offer the ground for maturing awakening without undertaking a fundamental review of their own shadows?”

Chapter by chapter, the book relates Siddhartha Gautama’s awakening to the sea-change occurring on Earth in present time as we as a civilization become aware of the ethical bankruptcy of the nuclear and fossil fuel industry and the psychopathic corporate and military abuse of power currently terrorizing our planet. Thanissara relates the Buddha’s story to real-life individuals who are living through these transitional times, such as Iraq war veterans, First Nation People, and the Dalai Lama. Time to Stand Up gives examples of the Buddha’s activism, such as challenging a racist caste system and violence against animals, stopping war, transforming a serial killer, and laying down a nonhierarchical structure of community governance, actions that would seem radical even today.

Thanissara explores ways forward, deepening our understanding of meditation and mindfulness, probing its use to pacify ourselves as the cogs in the corporate world by helping people be more functional in a dysfunctional systems–and shows how these core Buddhist practices can inspire a wake-up call for action for our sick and suffering planet Earth.

About the Sacred Activism series
When the joy of compassionate service is combined with the pragmatic drive to transform all existing economic, social, and political institutions, a radical divine force is born: Sacred Activism. The Sacred Activism Series, published by North Atlantic Books, presents leading voices that embody the tenets of Sacred Activism–compassion, service, and sacred consciousness–while addressing the crucial issues of our time and inspiring radical action.

THANISSARA is Anglo-Irish and originally from London. She trained in the Burmese Vipassana School of Meditation for three years, and was a Buddhist nun in the Thai Forest School of Ajahn Chah for twelve years. She has taught Buddhist meditation internationally for thirty years, and has a Master of Arts in Mindfulness Based Core Process Psychotherapy and a Post-Qualification Master of Arts in Mindfulness Based Psychotherapeutic Practice from the Karuna Institute of Middlesex University in London. She is a cofounder and guiding teacher of Dharmagiri Meditation Centre (South Africa) and Chattanooga Insight (Tennessee), a core teacher at Insight Meditation Society (Massachusetts), and an affiliated teacher of Spirit Rock Meditation Center (California). She lives between South Africa and the United States. Thanissara and Kittisaro, her husband and teaching partner, coauthored Listening to the Heart: A Contemplative Journey to Engaged Buddhism, and she has written two poetry books, Garden of the Midnight Rosary and The Heart of the Bitter Almond Hedge Sutra, and Time To Stand Up: An Engaged Buddhist Manifesto for the Earth.

♡ Awakening from Separation ♡ A Brilliant Dharma Talk about the Practice of Buddhist Meditation ♡

This talk “Awakening from Separation” given by Thanissara, also known as Linda Mary Peacock, impacted me quite deeply and I’m very happy to be able to share it with you here/now. Having listened to this talk several times, my hearing, learning and understanding of the practice continues to deepen. My desire and intention in posting this talk is simply to help share this Dharma, by getting the word out, and helping as many people as I can by providing links to the teachers, events and organizations that are helping the world to be more kind, compassionate, wise, generous and awake.

This talk was given as part of a free online conference (July 15-17 2016) that was presented by “Embodied Philosophy” and sponsored by the Nalanda Institute for Contemplative Science. The free online event was called, “Radical Presence: Buddhist Teachings for Modern Life” and the talks featured some of the most respected voices in Buddhism. To find out how to purchase the complete set of talks email Embodied Philosophy at:

There is a lovely meditation instruction for cultivating Samadhi by gathering the body, mind & breath starting at 38:00 ♡ “The activity of wisdom is compassion” ♡

(38:26)“We turn our attention to the breath… following the rhythm of the breath… breathing in and breathing out… feeling the breath energy suffusing the body… breathing in and breathing out and training the attention to follow the breath… the attention goes to a subtle experience of breath… as sensations in the body… as we rest there this gathering starts to happen… directly experiencing the whole body… feeling with the whole body… feeling from the inside of the body… calming the mental body… the felt sense body… the physical body… this working with body and breath within the body is the ground and heart of the practice of Samadhi….

For more information about Thanissara her Website is here:…

The Nature of Prayer ~ Rupert Spira

Published on Oct 27, 2017

Rupert discusses two types of prayer and how they relate to the understanding ‘I Am That’.
From the seven day retreat at Mercy Center

Polish the Lens and Meet Your True Self – Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

Light is our true essence…

Here’s a quote I love from 18thcentury mystical poet, William Blake:

“If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, Infinite. For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things thro’ narrow chinks of his cavern.”

Those of a certain age, like me, will remember the words “doors of perception” as a catch-phrase of the 1960s. First, British author Aldous Huxley borrowed The Doors of Perception as the title for a brief book he wrote in 1954, detailing his experiences when taking the psychedelic drug, mescaline. A decade later, iconic American rock band, The Doors, borrowed their name and all the rich layers of associated meaning from Huxley’s book title. As William Blake said, “If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, Infinite.” Our connection to the Infinite has always beckoned us. We have only to move beyond the barriers we ourselves have created to a blissful and empowering view of reality.

In my most recent explorations of what the Infinite means to us, I’ve been reading a book called The Impersonal Life by Joseph S. Benner. According to Benner, every one of us has both a personal self as well as an impersonal aspect to our being. Your personal self, or your personality, is being directed at all times by your mind and your five senses. When you approach your life from your Impersonal self, it is an opportunity to free yourself, now and forever, from the unhealthy and limiting domination of your personality, with its self-inflated and often self-sabotaging mind and intellect.

Discovering Your Inner Divine Love and Light

In contrast to your personal self, there is also an impersonal self that is with you for every moment of your existence in this lifetime. This impersonal self is NOT your intellect and body. It is the invisible intelligence that animates all of life. It is responsible for all of your deepest desires. It allows your fingernails to grow, your heart to beat, and it is the Force that supports all of life everywhere. To appreciate the presence of this Force, you must get away from the consciousness of your body and intellect, which have long held you enslaved. The work of our seminar this winter will be to discover how to feel your own connection to the Infinite Impersonal Self within and come to know and rely upon it at all times.

Shedding the Veil of Personality

Most of us are so attached to our personalities that we are immune to recognizing the LIGHT that is our true essence. That which you have come to think you are you are not! Everything in nature has an animating force behind it which, as Lao Tzu explains in the Tao Te Ching, “does nothing, yet leaves nothing undone.” There is no doer that you can see or touch that opens the flowers or keeps the planets in alignment or allows you to breathe. You know that it is there, yet it is impervious to your senses and your entire personality.

This year’s seminar on Maui will feature a meditation to assist you in gaining access to your impersonal self. It will include presentations on forgiveness and divine love and a new understanding that every burning desire that you have ever had and that has lived with you for your entire lifetime, is placed there not by your personality but by your infinite impersonal self. Those desires are there because the universal One Mind not only wants them there and has placed them there, but because it is your destiny to fulfill them before you depart this present corporeal existence here on Earth. This seminar is being offered to assist you in fulfilling your one true purpose for being here in the first place.

Anita Moorjani, who had a momentous experience of truly understanding the title “I AM LIGHT,” wherein she came face-to-face with her omnipresent impersonal self in the Light, and was miraculously healed of a ravaging cancer that had left her in a coma will be present with me in Maui. Her book, Dying to Be Me is now considered a classic in contemporary spiritual literature.

We’ll meet Immaculée Ilibagiza, who survived the Rwandan holocaust in 1994 and discovered her impersonal self while imprisoned in a tiny bathroom for 90 days, learned that she is, at her essence, LIGHT. She wrote another modern-day classic book titled Left To Tell. Also present will be Scarlett Lewis, the mother of a young boy senselessly murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School in New Town, Connecticut, who has since used this horrific moment in her life to bring LIGHT to herself, her community and the world. Each of these powerful women will speak on the power of forgiveness as a tool for coming to live each day from a place of divine love and living in the light.

YOU ARE LIGHT. When you accept this, you allow yourself to experience your true essence as a spark of the infinite divine intelligence.

Source: Dr. Wayne Dyer

The Practice Of Non-Judgement By Dr. Alberto Villoldo

Nonjudgement is a key practice in The Way of the Hero, the first of four insights that were carefully guarded by the ancient medicine men and women of the Americas. These Earthkeepers used their mastery of the insights to heal disease, eliminate emotional suffering, and grow new bodies that age and die differently.

The first insight is called The Way of the Hero because the most effective healers recognize that they were once deeply wounded themselves, and as a result of their own healing, they’ve developed compassion for others who are hurting. Who better than someone who has “been there, done that,” to help others let go of judgments and labels… and focus on healing.
To practice nonjudgement, we must transcend our limited beliefs, even those concerning our ideas about right and wrong. We make sense of the world by judging situations as right, wrong, good, or bad, according to rules defined by our culture, which we know as our moral code. But an Earthkeeper is amoral — note that they are not immoral, they simply are not ruled by mores. They believe that it’s important to let go of these sorts of judgements and maintain their ability to discern.

When we practice nonjudgement, we refuse to automatically go along with the opinions of others. In doing so, we begin to acquire a sense of ethics that transcends the mores of our time. This is especially important in a society that is constantly bombarded with images of reality filtered through an ever-present electronic media, where our values — liberty, freedom, love, and the like — are reduced to sound bites and empty platitudes. When we refuse to collude with the consensual, we gain a different perspective. We discover what freedom means to us, personally — and that it is more than being able to choose a particular car in a sales lot or meal from a menu.

Our judgements are assumptions that are based on what we’ve learned and been told. For example, most of us collude with the belief that cancer is always a deadly disease, so if our doctor says we have it, we become terrified. Yet, when we practice nonjudgement, we reject the automatic belief that this means we are going to have to battle for our life. We don’t label our chances of survival as good or bad, or rate our recovery in terms of percentages, because that would be turning our fate over to statistics. Instead, we deal with the problem from the highest level of perception we can. We allow ourselves to embrace the unknown, along with its unlimited possibilities.

I have personal knowledge of several instances where a cancer diagnosis delivered on one day was found to be mistaken days later, after the would-be patient privately refused to collude with a potential death sentence. Our stories not only influence how we feel about things, but the “real” world out there as well — in these cases healing events that had already happened!
We can always craft a mythic story around our journey — one that will help us grow, learn, and heal. In the end, we may not be able to alter a diagnosis, but we just might heal our souls and finally start learning the lessons we came into this world to get. Perhaps to slow down and appreciate the people around us; to let go of an existence that we are sleepwalking through because we’ve become convinced it is our destiny; or, from the perspective of hummingbird, the diagnosis may serve as a wake-up call to make the changes we’ve been avoiding.

When we don’t judge an illness, or allow ourselves to get stuck in mortal fear that we’ll die, we’ll find it easier to perceive it from a higher level and write a mythic story. When we practice nonjudgement, we no longer have illnesses — we have opportunities for healing and growth. We no longer have past traumas — we have events that sharpened our edges and shaped who we are today. We don’t reject the facts — we reject the negative interpretation of them, and the traumatic story we’re tempted to weave around them. We then create a story of strength and compassion based on these facts.

Source: The Four Winds

Eckhart Tolle: Confused about Inner Resistance?

Published on Oct 24, 2017

Guidance in trusting the deeper self and the wisdom it emanates.

Adyashanti – The Deep Reality of Here

Published on Oct 24, 2017

 Rather than grasping for any state of experience, what if you were to always simply let go into the moment of now? Adyashanti explores how impactful moments of realization help you to see a deeper reality about the profound, ever-present here and now — the most valuable place to be.

Video Excerpted from “Coming Down the Mountain”:

Quotes from this Video:

“Impactful moments are important. They are moments when we get out of our own way and see life through a different lens or through no lens at all.”

“Why do I always end up back here? Maybe I end up back here because here is the most valuable true real place to be. Maybe here is where it’s all about.”

“Look at here a little more closely, and don’t be so obsessed with trying to be there.”

Peace beyond thinking! :Eckhart Tolle

Published on Oct 23, 2017

In this video, Eckhart Tolle acquaints us with the Peace which lies beyond thinking!

Awaken Interviews Leonard Jacobson Part III – How Do We Come Into Right Relationship With The Ego?

Leonard Jacobson: I’ve made Step Two very, very easy and simple…just four things to watch out for..
We humans have been trying to awaken for lifetimes, without much success. Because of the rapid advancement of technology, it is imperative that we awaken now. Otherwise, technology is not safe in our hands. We have become too destructive in our unconsciousness. We are facing a crisis and so it has become imperative that the way of awakening is revealed in a way that is simple and available to all those who have an interest in awakening.

Step one of this teaching leads to Presence in the simplest possible way. It requires no beliefs, no practices, no Saviors, no one standing between you and God. Each moment that you are truly present you are an awakened Being. The problem is that we are so addicted to thinking and so used to living within the mind, that it is difficult to remain present in our day today lives and relationships. It is not long before we are involuntarily pulled out of Presence. That is why step 2 of this teaching is necessary.

Step 1 leads to Presence.

Step 2 leads to mastery of the mind and ego.

Step two involves bringing conscious awareness to all the ways that we are pulled out of the present moment. What are the obstacles to becoming present? What is holding us in the past and future, in the story? Just as I have simplified step 1 of the teaching, I have also simplified step 2. There are 4 aspects to step 2, which means there are only four things that we have to watch out for.

The first aspect is the resistance of the ego. If we are to awaken, we need answers to the following questions. What is the ego? What is its role in your life? How does it function? Why does it resist you being present? How does it pull you out of Presence, and how can you overcome its resistance? We humans must have answers to these questions if we are to awaken in any fundamental way. I answer these questions in detail in my books, workshops and retreats.

You cannot defeat the ego. It is impossible. The very intention to defeat the ego or get rid of the ego is coming from the ego itself. It is just a trick to keep you in the mind and under the ego’s control. But you can come into right relationship with the ego so that the ego will gradually and gently surrender its resistance and release you into Presence. Right relationship with the ego is only possible as you become more and more present. In Presence there is no judgment. When you are present you are love, acceptance and compassion. It is from Presence that you bring the energy of love, acceptance and compassion to the ego. It will take some time, but as the ego begins to trust the flowering of Presence from within, and as it feels the love, acceptance and compassion arising from Presence, it will begin to relax and release you.

The second aspect of step 2 is to go through a process of owning, acknowledging and confessing who you have become on this long journey through time and separation, living in a world where no one is present. In truth, you are love, acceptance and compassion. You are empowered from within. You exist in the realization of Oneness. At the deepest level you are an eternal Being. You are pure consciousness. You are without judgment. This is the truth of who you are when you are fully present. But who have you become? Are you judgmental? Do you judge yourself or others? Are you afraid of what others think of you? Are you a blamer? Are you guilty? Are you angry? Are you caught in an unhealed and unresolved past? Are you a victim? Do you hurt others with your thoughts, words and actions? Do you feel unworthy, unloved, abandoned? Do you feel like you not good enough? Are you controlling? Who have you become?

As a part of the process of awakening you must be willing to own, acknowledge and confess who you have become if you are to awaken into the truth of who you really are. Your life and your relationships are a mirror constantly reflecting to you who you have become, but most of us are unwilling or afraid to look into that mirror. You either hide who we have become from ourselves and others, or you are trying to fix or change who you have become, which is a form of judgment. Or you project who you have become onto others, which is simply another way to be in denial of who you have become.

If you are to awaken into the truth of who you are, you will have to own, acknowledge and confess who you have become. As Jesus said, ”All that is hidden shall be revealed.

The third aspect of step 2 has to do with the repressed feelings from the past still buried within us. Even if you open into a reasonable level of Presence, there will always be someone who will come into your life who will say or do something that will trigger those repressed feelings. Then those feelings from the past project onto the present, and distort your experience of the present moment. Now you are caught in a painful and limited past, which you are projecting onto the present moment. If you are to awaken, you will have to go through a process of liberating repressed emotions like anger, hurt, sadness, pain, unfulfilled needs and fear. This will allow for a much deeper level of presence to awaken within you. In my books, workshops and retreats, I share how to come into right relationship with these repressed feelings so that they are released in a conscious and effective way.

The fourth and final aspect of Step 2 is to bring conscious awareness to how we lose ourselves in others. If I want you to love me or accept me or I want you to think I am good enough, I am losing myself in you. If I’m afraid of your judgment or your rejection, I am losing myself in you. Energetically, I’m moving away from myself, and getting mixed up in you. Which is not good for you. And it is not good for me. We are all lost in each other in the way I’m describing.

We have to go through a process of recognizing these four aspects as they arise within us. And we have to do so with the love, acceptance and compassion arising from Presence. And then the whole story will begin to relax and release you more and more into the present moment. More and more you will be aware of the pure consciousness and sense of Oneness that exists at the center of your Being. More and more, you will open into peace and love. And all these qualities of Presence will flow into your day-to-day life.

Donna Quesada: That’s beautiful, what you say about the ego. I have read the book that you signed for me, “Journey into now.” Thank you very much for that. If you don’t mind, I’d like to read something from the book dealing with repressed emotions. This was a fascinating passage that really struck me. You’re relating a private session you had with someone named Daniel who was dealing with depression and anger. You said to him “You have to own your violent nature. You are angry. You are violent. You are a killer. If anyone hurts you or intrudes into your space, you want to annihilate them. Own it, acknowledge it, confess it and express it, but without judgment. It is not the truth of who you are, but it is a part of who you have become. This is the way of liberation. When you own that this energy is in you, you will no longer project it outside of you. And when you express it fully and responsibly, you will come out of your depression.”

LEONARD: The only thing I would add is that it is important to have fun as you own the anger arising within you! Exaggerate it! Ham it up! Whoever you are angry at, kill them at least three times in very creative ways. It has nothing to do with the person that you think you are angry at. All that is happening is that the person you are angry at has triggered the anger repressed within you from the past. We want to liberate these repressed feelings. On the one hand, you are allowing the feelings to express themselves: I hate you…I want to kill you. Be outrageous. Anger is ridiculous. It wants to kill for the slightest hurt, but because of this we keep the anger repressed. Be present with the anger as it arises, so that you don’t get caught up in the story that anger is telling you. When you allow the anger repressed within you in the way that I am describing, you will begin to laugh. It is funny. The anger will have its opportunity for full expression, and then it will be released from your body. However, you must always express the anger in a responsible way and in a way that does not hurt others or spill onto others.

DONNA: This is a very interesting thing that I think is helpful to everyone because everyone experiences anger. I remember watching something on television; it was a pop psychologist who took his clients to a junkyard with baseball bats and instructed them to get their anger out by beating things and bashing things. But it’s so contrary to what spiritual teachings usually embrace. For instance, Thich Nhat Hahn says, “to practice anger is simply just to rehearse it.” And it’s not productive or positive at all. But what you’re saying is something in the middle. It’s a creative, non-violent way to deal with that energy.

LEONARD: As long as you are present. You see the key is to be present as you allow the anger to surface. On the one hand, you are a raving lunatic expressing anger and killing, torturing anyone who hurt you and made you angry. On the other hand, you are present, allowing the anger to express and tell its story, but you know that the story is from the past and has nothing to do with the present moment. You really should wait until you are alone before expressing the anger. You do not want to hurt anyone. The anger is yours alone. No one can make you angry unless you have anger from the past repressed within you. No one can hurt you unless you have hurt from the past repressed within you. I’ve never ever suggested that anyone has the right to express anger towards anyone. The last thing you want to do is dump anger on people because it will come right back at you. It’s extremely ineffective. The only reason I teach things in my retreats like the anger meditation is to help you liberate these feelings from the past. If they are unresolved and buried within you, they will keep you in that part of the story from where the anger originates.

DONNA: So, it sounds like you are releasing yourself from what we call victim consciousness at the same time.

LEONARD: Absolutely. There is never any need to be a victim. Sometimes it is a strategy to get what you want. It often originates in childhood. For example, the only time mother fully attended to you was when you cried. If you take into account Pavlov’s Dogs, an association forms and a victim strategy develops. You only get what you want when you cry or you are unhappy. This victim strategy can remain with you the whole of your life. At an unconscious level you believe that if you are sad or unhappy, someone might eventually attend to you. But of course, it does not work.

Your life manifests as a reflection of your inner world. If you are caught in the mind, with all the limiting beliefs, judgments and repressed emotions from the past, together with all the fear, anger and hurt that have accumulated over the years, your life will manifest as a reflection of this inner world. On the other hand, if you are fundamentally present and your inner world is one of peace, love, acceptance, compassion and a sense of Oneness and abundance, your life will manifest according to that inner world.

For example, if you believe that you are not loved or lovable, which is a limiting belief that formed in your early childhood, you will be unable to attract love into your life, or you will attract those who are incapable of love. Even if many people love you, you will not be able to let it in because at a deeper level, you feel unloved. It is programmed into your story. In this way, life confirms the story within the mind. If at an unconscious level within the mind, you believe that you cannot have what you want, life will manifest to confirm that belief.

Presence is transcendent of the story. As you transcend your story, you transform your story. As you become more grounded in the present moment, all the qualities of Presence will begin to flow into your life. Peace, love, acceptance, power, truth, compassion, clarity begin to flow into your life. Don’t you think that will transform your story?

DONNA: What if someone were to say to you, “What’s the big deal about now? Now is not so pleasant.” Is there ever a place for distraction? You’re in an unpleasant situation and you just want to listen to your music or zone out or enjoy a fantasy.

LEONARD: That’s not a problem, as long as you come back. You don’t have to be present all the time but don’t go so far into your story that you disconnect from Presence. The whole of humanity has been so lost for so many life times. That’s why this world is in the mess that it’s in. Human unconsciousness is the sole cause of all the suffering on our planet, including injustice, cruelty in its many forms, war, inequality, abuse of women, children, and the environment. It is all because we are lost in a world of illusion and the ego is running the show. If the ego is in charge, then it is all about me, me, me! Mine, mine, mine! I am right, what‘s in it for me, how can I take an advantage for myself. This is the way of the ego in the world.

We have seven billion people on the planet functioning under the domination of the ego. There is another way. Can you imagine if humanity had awakened when Buddha walked upon the Earth? If everyone on the planet had responded to his message, would we be in the mess we are in? The answer is, absolutely not. What if everybody awakened with Jesus? We would be living in a different world.

Maybe this is our time now. We missed it with Buddha. We missed it with Jesus. There is a readiness now that was not available in the past. We have reached a crisis point. It is as if we have no choice. As a species living on this planet we must awaken to a higher level of consciousness. We must awaken to a level of Presence where we experience the Oneness. Then everything can change. We are not custodians of this beautiful earth. We are caretakers, which simply means that we are here to take care of this planet. As we deepen into Presence, we will recognize where we are. This is Heaven on Earth and we are so blessed to be here. But until we awaken, we have no clue who we are, where we are or what we are doing here.

DONNA: I picked out a beautiful quote from one of your books, which I would like to read back to you.

“It is time for humanity to awaken at a collective level. Enlightenment can no longer be for a select few, who no longer participate in the world. If there is to be an awakening at a collective level, we will have to learn to function within the world. This means we will have to find a balance between the timelessness of the fully awakened state and the world of time.”

What do you mean by, “If there is to be an awakening at the collective level, we will have to learn to function in the world?” How do we find that balance between the timelessness of the awakened state and the world of time?

LEONARD: It means that you can flow easily between the timeless world of Now and the world of time. There is no obstruction and you are not identified with your life within time. You know that it is all based in the past and future. It is just memory and imagination. But now you are profoundly established in Presence. You can play in the world of time, but that is not where you live. You live in the world of Now. There present moment is your true home.

When I first starting teaching after my first awakening in 1989, it was really difficult to guide anyone into Presence. People had tremendous resistance to it. But over the years, it seems to me that more and more people are opening up. As more of us open into Presence, it makes it easier for those who follow. Eventually we will reach a critical mass, and awakening will become easier and more available to everyone. This is our best hope.

One of the ways I like to describe it is this. Each moment that you are truly present, it’s like dropping a tiny pebble of light into a vast dark pond of human unconsciousness. Ripples of light! Without you even being aware of it, ripples of light are emanating from you each moment you are present, bringing light to the darkness, and affecting human consciousness in subtle and hidden ways, until one day we will reach that critical mass and humanity will simply awaken out of its dream.

DONNA: Indeed. Thank you.

Read Part I Here…

Read Part II Here…

Source: AWAKEN

Adyashanti – Don’t Resist to What Is (Great Talk)

Published on Oct 17, 2017

Adyashanti – Don’t Resist to What Is (Great Talk)

Check out this talk of him explaining what it is like to be awake:

Sadhguru – Depression & Going Beyond It (Must Listen)

How Soon is Now: From Personal Initiation to Global Transformation by Daniel Pinchbeck (Author) [updated Oct 20, 2017]

We are on the brink of an ecological mega-crisis threatening the future of life on earth and our actions over the next few years may well determine the destiny of our descendants. Between a manifesto and a tactical plan of action, How Soon is Now? by radical futurist and philosopher Daniel Pinchbeck outlines a vision for a mass social movement that will address this crisis.

Drawing on a huge range of resources and references Daniel Pinchbeck presents a compelling argument for the need for change on a global basis – it is only when we see ourselves as one planetary tribe that this change can occur. The central thesis is that humanity has self-willed the ecological crisis in order to bring about the necessary conditions for transcendence of our current state of being, by undergoing an initiatory ordeal on a planetary scale.

This collective ordeal is necessary for us to evolve from one state of being – our current level of consciousness – to the next. By passing through this initiation we realize ourselves as one unified being, a planetary super-organism in a symbiotic relationship with the Earth’s ecology and the entire web of life. Covering everything from energy and agriculture, to culture, politics, media and ideology, Pinchbeck’s book is ultimately about the nature of the human soul and the future of our current world. He calls for an intentional and consciously designed metamorphosis of our current systems, which transform capitalist and exclusive structures into participatory, democratic, and inclusive ones, based on an integration of Eastern metaphysics, social ecology, and radical political thought. “How Soon is Now? gives us the context we need to understand the chaos and turbulence of our times.” – Sting

Daniel Pinchbeck is the author of Breaking Open the Head (Broadway Books, 2002),2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl (Tarcher/Penguin, 2006), and Notes from the Edge Times(Tarcher/Penguin, 2010). He is the founder of the think tank, Center for Planetary Culture which produced the Regenerative Society Wiki and his essays and articles have been featured in The New York Times Magazine, Esquire, Rolling Stone, ArtForum, The New York Times Book Review, The Village Voice, Dazed and Confused and many other publications.

In 2007, Daniel launched the web magazine Reality Sandwich and co-founded Evolver currently includes Evolver Learning Labs, a webinar platform, and The Alchemist’s Kitchen, for online retail. Daniel also edited the publishing imprint, Evolver Editions with North Atlantic Books. He is featured in the 2010 documentary, 2012: Time for Change directed by Joao Amorim and produced by Mangusta Films. He hosted the talk show,, for GaiamTV.

How Soon is Now? Daniel Pinchbeck on social change and global transformation

Daniel Pinchbeck is the author of How Soon is Now?
We are on the brink of an ecological mega-crisis threatening the future of life on earth and our actions over the next few years may well determine the destiny of our descendants. Between a manifesto and a tactical plan of action, How Soon is Now? by radical futurist and philosopher Daniel Pinchbeck outlines a vision for a mass social movement that will address this crisis.

Published on Oct 19, 2017

Rupert elaborates on the meaning of understanding.


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