Thursday, February 19, 2015

The big energy

From The Temptation of St. AnthonyHieronymus Bosch
Question. 

How does it go from sensing a part of the body into sensing the  being? I seem to (usually, when I'm having negative emotions) go into sensing the breath, and at the same time sensing some other part of body. Then it's as if I'm conscious, without associations, and things just flow and I'm separate. 

How important is dual attention in this? And of what?

Response. 

Everyone wants insight on such matters.  I, too, wish I understood such things better. Yet it's not so simple.

I think it's a very much like a scientist coming up against DNA in a cell. Let's say the cell is functioning very badly, and the scientist realizes that — for example — 10,000 changes need to be made in the DNA. He wants to reach in with his hands, refer to a diagram, and just rearrange the DNA like Lego so that it works. But this is—obviously—completely impossible. His hands are much too big; and he doesn't have any accurate diagrams, besides which, every change to the DNA triggers a completely new set of situations in which the other 9,999 changes will have to be different than the ones that were proposed and planned when there were 10,000 changes to be made.

The cell has its own repair mechanism, which is under a set of laws that are, paradoxically, much higher than any laws the scientist can invoke. In the end, the scientist has to trust biology and those higher laws to make the repairs, because even though he can study every single thing that is wrong with the cell, he doesn't have the tools or the understanding to fix it on his own.

Our body has a natural ability to engage in the organic sense of being. But there is no formula for awakening this. One might just as well say that there is a formula for awakening in general, and there isn't.

One has to become open to the big energy, the light that comes down and transforms. This has to happen a single time, and decisively, in order for any permanent change to take place. Again, there isn't any formula for this; and a change such as this is merely a beginning, a first step. 

Sometimes when it happens to people, they mistake it for enlightenment, because it produces many changes which appear to be magical but are, in fact, just corrections to the way the organism works. An enormous amount of hard work and much worse suffering comes after that event, if it happens. Of course no one wants to hear this. They just want to get something good from inner work and then walk away with it.

What is reasonably certain, in my experience, is that everyone wants such things to happen, and that this desire for them directly opposes any such possibility. One of the reasons that non-desires need to prevail over desires is so that my desire and grasping for such things—which is entirely egoistic and directly contradictory to the higher energy—is then released and stops blocking the way. This is the very sweetest kind of surrender.

Very nearly everything Meister Eckhart wrote about opening to God was connected to this opening of the higher energy, which can — if one follows it and suffers even more— lead to the much deeper places he describes in some of his sermons. So reading his material is a very good place to prepare the ground for the receiving of such a transformational material.

I know this is not much comfort. You want to do something. Everyone wants to do something. Few understand that there is nothing to be done, except God's will. 

So from the beginning, up to the end, when something finally opens, we are always mistaken. One can properly see this once the big energy changes inner being, but until then, one is convinced that one is not mistaken.

If there were a method or a plan, I would tell it to you. The truth is, if there were methods and plans, and exercises worked, we wouldn't have to have this discussion, because it would already be quite well understood. Exercises are merely there to keep the ego busy and out of the way while — hopefully — enough suffering takes place to break it. Again, no one wants to admit this. 

A lot of salesmen and spiritual parasites make their living on exercises and the like. This is a complicated subject, and it would take some time to explain; after all, exercises do work in some cases, but these are specialized, and almost always just consist of showing someone what could be possible— not achieving any permanent result.  Clinging to exercises under the mistaken impression that they "lead somewhere" in a logical, predictable progression can result in going down into blind alleys from which there is no room to turn around and go back. Those places do have features; but each one represents a journey that cannot go further.  The great traditions are filled with many warnings about such things.

 The chief action needs to be to become open. This, as with all development, arrives mostly through a great deal of suffering. If you confront yourself both inwardly and outwardly enough to suffer greatly, and to suffer for a long time, you create the conditions: but then, patience — and even more suffering — is necessary. 

Eventually, what is hard in us breaks. Then something is possible.

Hosanna.

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