Sunday, December 16, 2012

A relationship with energy

In speaking of energy, we encounter understandings in yoga that get very specific about where it comes from, where it goes to, the channels it travels through, and so on.

 There is some truth to this. Nonetheless, in the end, all of the energies and forces that affect us are part of a single and whole field of energy. It is whole within us in the same way that it is whole outside of us, and all of it exists as a single thing. Energies appear to be separated; they appear to travel in channels and enter us or leave us in specific ways. But the energy is not limited in its action.

I generally think in terms of limitations. I've read books which define them; for example, they say it comes in the top of the head, it travels down the spine, and so on. Every single conception I can have regarding the energy, however, is a limitation, and inner energy itself is unlimited. So an inner energy can have any quality, and express itself in any way, at any time, in any part. Each of these expressions, mind you, will be entirely lawful; but I have little idea of the laws. So my preconceived ideas about what ought to be done, how I ought to receive, are insufficient. I need to present myself, and see what happens.

In this way, my role is very active: I'm an observer. I am a precise observer, a participating observer who is (or ought to be) there for each event; but I am not a director. I am not a commentator. I am not a presumer or authority.

 Now, this is a specific kind of work. There are other kinds of work; but this is not the kind of work that I undertake when I undertake a work with inner energy, according to the understandings that Mr. Gurdjieff and Jeanne de Salzmann brought. The teaching creates a harmonious atmosphere of inner trust, and this relies on what is, for all intents and purposes, a Buddhist practice of non-interference, in an inner sense.

As soon as I interfere, as soon as I touch, or presume, parts that have been attempting to build trust suddenly may discover — with good reason — that I cannot be trusted. There is a dissonance where there should be harmony. This gentle, quiet, and intimate work that needs to take place over many years is one of a great demand; but the greater part of that demand is restraint. Just as a truly masterful musician will only play the notes that are absolutely necessary, so the discriminating student of inner energy participates, but never exaggerates their role. The role must be seen clearly, and inhabited actively, but it must not be one that arrogates.

 It's a delicate thing, this, because in harmony, energy knows what it ought to be doing. I don't. In this sense, I ought to be prepared for surprises, for the unexpected. It's perfectly all right to follow suggestions, some of which have a degree of accuracy; but only for a while. In the end, the inner practice always has to be one of an unflagging attentiveness, standing on the tips, so to speak, of one's toes, waiting to move gracefully in the right direction with the next inner movement of a force that arrives.

If one attends, help always comes. This is a law.

 Some energy is always available; this force of Being rests forever within the seed of one's essence. Even in the most extreme cases, it only leaves the body with death, no matter how buried it is. (It can be malformed; but that's another matter.) Swedenborg makes some very interesting comments about this property in his Divine Love and Wisdom.

How do I honor this question? It's only by a willingness for relationship that that can take place.

 So I ask myself this all day long as I work. Where am I? Where is the energy in me now?

In every moment, this can be a question. If I live this question, the parts will find a right relationship.

May your soul be filled with light.


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