Monday, August 29, 2011

Recovery and Enlightenment

OK, it's time to give a shout out to the recovery community. A couple of us are (coughs discreetly) members. 
After you sober up and look around, you realize you are going to NEED a spiritual programme. To stay alive. To stop harming your self and others. 
This adds urgency to the spiritual search, which is, frankly, wonderful. You whip right past New Age marshmallow fluff, heading for meat and bone. 
You begin to sort out available spiritual offerings. Some people are lucky enough to go back to a childhood belief system. Others have no beliefs, and some just have a lot of unquestioned crap.
You look around to see if there is someone less confused, more peaceful, not full of crap. You lurk around a group, seeing if there is evidence for spirituality having any visible effects.
Otherwise, why bother?
You stay sober long enough, see the same people for a while, and you realize some people are not shitting you. This Higher Power thing is working for them. 
Alcoholics and drug fiends are not lying to you. 
So you keep working at the Higher Power thing-y (described as something larger than your self), while watching how, for at least one of your group, B., the higher power thing has completely subsumed the personal self. She has, entirely, turned her personal will over to God, and is no longer running the show.
In any way.
You blink, because Christian is your least favourite flavour of Higher Power. 
But she speaks with utter honesty about her experience. It is straight up and no frills. You are floored that enlightenment looks so ordinary, and yet has the specific gravity of Earth. No robes, no glow, not a single claim to be special. 
But proximity to B. does not mean that her courage, honesty, or work rubs off on you in some magical fashion. You have more work to do. More looking for a way to get out of self protection, self concern, self-centeredness, and the delusion of personal will. 
There is not an ending to this story. 
I got "enlightened" going through the Ruthless Truth process of extremely pointy pointing to the illusion of self. Search abruptly stopped. Life is ordinary, dear, and not personal. Nothing else stopped, and nothing happened except that the illusion of self was seen to be just that, an illusion.
Talk about obvious. 
So, watch this blog for B.'s story. It won't sound at all Ruthless Truth-y, but this is an enlightened collective, that is the criteria. Welcome, all.
Love, Elizabeth

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Enlightenment vs the IRS

From Linda:

So, a few weeks after seeing through the illusion of self—for real, not just as a high level
concept anymore—a notice came from the IRS of an income tax audit. For anyone not in the US—
the Internal Revenue Service has been a boogeyman for me and most folks here. It’s a
huge, dark, sticky thought form.

The initial experience was FEAR—total body contraction FEAR.
I couldn’t even actually read the letter for a period of time.
Then came a barrage of images & stories from the real & imagined past:
Linda getting caught for shoplifting in 6th grade; Linda being sent to principal’s office in
grade school; Linda caught cheating… you get the drift.
Next came the onslaught of projections of humiliation & misfortune: Linda inadequately justifying her existence, Linda exposed as a fraud & cheat, Linda undergoing years & years of tax audits, Linda destitute…

Now the interesting part-- the thoughts arose, “who is afraid here?” , “who is this happening
to?” And then the experience of dropping into calm awareness, right here, right now. The
words aren’t right, but the fear was gone.
I’d love to say that it has not resurrected itself, but not so.

That night I woke up around 2 am experiencing fear throughout the body. The questions
came again, and fear remained. Awareness of contraction, awareness of stories, awareness
of the space these things were happening in.
It seemed like two levels of experience, I suspect it was a flipping back & forth, from identification with self, to remembering no-self, or from TIME to PRESENT AWARENESS.
This lasted for about 2 hours, then the fear faded out & I slept. This process re-occurred several times for shorter duration in the last 2 weeks—a snag with the tax process is hit & the story RESURRECTS ITSELF.

What I notice is that the story of ME arises, beckons, and there is following or attachment for some
period of time. Then not. This must be the unwinding that is talked about--all the pictures
& stories that have been claimed as ME needing to give it another shot. Are you THIS? What
about THAT? It reminds me of the saying: ”the devil knows not for whom he works”.

Each story involves time, the past or future. There isn’t the active “letting go” of story that was
always the quest of the seeking ME, more like a relaxation, but even that word conveys too
much effort. Life lifing, to quote Elena. Come on, fear; come on stories; come on LIFE.
What a trip.
Laughter & gratitude.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Finding Nemo

From Kali:

 'Letting it be so.'
What you are about to read is a story, just a story...
Some people bust through the “Gateless Gate”.
Some of us take a peek, perhaps more than once, before we realize what is
Still falling prey to the delusions of the mind, believing the
content of our thoughts.
I had been with Osho since the late 70’s. Years of a mixture of delusion,
but knowing that I was in the presence of truth.
Now I can see that it was about 10 years ago, the first time I saw it. I saw
It was a time in my life when I was going to Sedona, Arizona, a lot.
It was a time when a group of people were helping others realize what
Osho’s work and words were all about.        
In this particular group, the focus was to help us see how we get
identified with a false center. At that time I still thought that there was such
a thing as a true center.
But anyhow, the beauty of seeing what you are not, created a shift in
perception like I never had before.  And the words 'Let it be so' came into
my life with a wonderful impact.
I put the jewel in my pocket, and went on with life, and some illusions
continued . But the self was (like Adya would say) mortally wounded.
When the book of The Power of Now came out. I saw my hand go directly
to it in a bookstore, even before I read the cover.
I opened it, and recognized that I was in the presence of truth, once again.
I traveled to go see Eckhart in person, but I didn’t know what else I could
For years identities started to fall apart. New ones were created.
Dark spaces  with a lot of confusion would come along.

I focused on work and sports training.  Body movement had always been
a source of joy for me. As a young girl with dancing, and as an older adult with
endurance sports, mostly running. That became my meditation.
It was only about 3 years ago that grace came, through my friend Iz when
she mentioned Adyashanti.
From the very beginning it set me on fire.
The first thing that happened with Adya’s words was that all effort just
Everything started to fall apart much quicker, specially after I started to
listen to Jed Mckenna’s books.
I don’t know exactly what was it about him, but illusion after illusion started
to be seen for what it was. I could not sleep for days, I could not stop
listening to what he had to say.
Around that time I noticed that the suffering disappeared.
All projects for self improvement fell apart as I had no more interest. Not
even my opinions were relevant.
But the most valuable tool that I got from Jed was the ability to “gain
Without altitude the density of the stories of the mind and the density of the
emotions were drowning any light of having seen reality.
Every time I heard Adya talk about the phenomena of “I got it, I lost it”, I
would think “idiots, who does that -- see and then get deluded again?"
When I heard of Ruthless Truth, it got my attention.
Here it was, dialogue after dialogue, in which I could see that I had seen
and turned away from the only important truth. There is no me!
The center does not exist, it never existed!
The story of the I searching and finding was just that -- thoughts that had
created the illusion of a recipient of all those experiences.
Life was and is just running it’s course with no me in it.
And this last seeing was with the help all the way from Australia, with a
beautiful man name Nemo.
So I guess you can say that life went from finding Osho, to finding Nemo.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Spiritual Accessorizing

I remember way back, with Osho, feeling like one of the dust mice of the community. Beauties of all races and ages and genders swanned about, radiant with bliss, sparkling with good health and hormones, wearing robes in the latest style. Most beautiful ashrams, ever. I was lucky to have had the experience when I was young and had some time to burn. 
But I've tired of the spiritual beauties as I get older. In America at least, spirituality gets more and more monetized and commercialized and will soon be trading on the stock exchange. Money for vapourware, as it were. Little overhead, and that paid by donation. 
I've spent large sums in lean times, getting myself to the latest wisdom master or mistress, and it was money well spent. I developed a sense of who was offering something I could use, and a healthy scepticism. 
Near the end of searching, I attended a few events with a pragmatic, non-seeking husband in tow. Man clearly loves me. 
Unexpectedly, he enjoyed critiquing it all, from initial marketing brochure to rented churches.  He counted the house, running what were undoubtedly accurate totals on the take, and commented on volunteer organization. He'd been regional director of a national non-profit for decades. 
We both loved spiritual people watching. Rich, poor, devotees, sceptics. All dressed to reflect a role. Appropriate facial expression, loud greeting of in-groups, sexual positioning, all clearly indicated that self presentation and spiritual search were closely linked. 
Sadly funny and wholly self-serving, in the most literal way. 
And I was kind of tired of it. There, but no longer really participating. 
I guess if you've been reading these blogs you have figured out that I (and we) got enlightened (big word, tiny explosive realization) on the internet. 
Disembodied teachers, writing, defining concepts, trying concepts on reality, coming back to the computer, getting immediate feedback and direction, being frustrated, being angry, being confused, working as hard and honestly as possible and finally seeing that the whole idea of self was as fabricated as the characters I'd been playing out on the spiritual stages. 
The guy who was mainly responsible for this is about 35 years younger than I, which is, coincidently, about as long as I've been seeking. Makes me laugh. But who cares who gets you through the Gate, as long as you get through?
So, unless you are just out there socializing and looking for another spiritual and sexual conquest, you might want to broaden your search criteria. 
Weirdly, this last search was free. Who knew? 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Jed McKenna

Jed McKenna is still alive and working on the patterns in my head.
They did not magically disappear, for which I am grateful. Personality and history are there to lend a sense of continuity that a human be-ing needs.

Jed the Enlightened Guy still had a personality and a story.  If you don't know about Jed McKenna's books, Wisefool Press and Amazon are nicely stocked with paper, electronic, and audio versions.
I joined the Spiritually Incorrect Facebook group AFTER seeing through self,  for three reasons.

1/  Reading through comments on , I followed a link to the Ruthless Truth website. There I was warped through the Gate (seeing through the illusion of self) at speed. So, thank you, person who came to that forum and gave others the next step.

2/  Jed's take on enlightenment was invaluable when I showed up all breathless and sweaty on the other side of the Gate. He's pretty deadpan about it all, so it lessens possible drama. Like the world needs more drama.

3/  See Number One. Take the trouble to tell others what worked for you.

What makes these books special to a certain kind of seeker?
Cause Jed does not (overtly) do "heart-centered" anything.
I asked people on the Facebook forum:
"It was a reset button for me that set the destruction of beliefs in motion."
"Don't take sides... not even your own."
"Jed's first book was like a confirmation, that it's ok to be spiritually incorrect. With jed i felt ok hanging out   near the cliff. Thinking about just jumping off, incorrectly."

And a PM from Robert: "Jed pulls together a lot of concepts I was familiar with, packages them insightfully, and perhaps most importantly, he illustrates how these ideas can be applied in "daily life." His books read kinda like novels, in which the Jed character practices being in the world but not of it. For ex., the notion of "what's indicated" works for me. As we float through Maya, on a moment by moment basis, what is indicated? is just about the most useful idea I've stumbled on."

Thank you, people!
If you haven't read the books, "What is indicated?" means letting go of the steering wheel of your life, to see if there *needs* to be a self driving your life.
To see if what happens when "you" get out of the way is a disaster, or a revelation.

I confess, I started very small. Stuff like not making a comment in a conversation, seeing if that made a difference to the other person. Leaving space for something else to happen.
Stuff like not doing the housework on a really grumpy day, and how it changed the grumpiness to not force myself to do it. Letting housework happen.
Left or right? Let the universe decide.
So when the Gate showed up, I was ready.
Thanks, Jed, wherever you are.
Love, Elizabeth

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Me, The Gift That Keeps On Giving

OK—ME has been clearly seen as a thought. So? And?

Who/what sees this thought? Something is here. Maybe not a “thing”.

As I go about the day, all the familiar streams of narration arise about my plans, my responses,
my…fill in the blank. The question arises, “who/what sees this ME thought?” Me…What sees?
My…What sees? The hypnosis of being a separate, ongoing ME just doesn’t seem to be able to
take hold for any extended period of TIME. And there is a sense of space. Here Now Space. “Is
IT still here?” The question arises, again & again. So far, anyway.

As I LOOK, at the thought of ME and at the space in which the thought arises, I notice just how
like Velcro the ME thought is, sticking to every other thought that arises, bundling clumps of
them together, creating whole universes, really. And TIME. It seems to be the ME thought that
bundles & drags memories into the present, giving them a pseudo-life, as well as projecting a
pseudo-life into the future.

It’s not that I hadn’t heard this before—Be Here Now was the first spiritual book I read, back in
the 60s. But the SEEING is a totally different thing. The SEEING that just happens. No effort.
No ME.

The story of ME=TIME

The story of ME=pain

The story of ME=fear

Gratitude & laughter.


Monday, August 15, 2011

I Am Out To My Mother

First, I wish to explain that I accidentally (yeah, laugh, it can happen to you), sent a blog link to my mom in a list of email addresses. 
She took it well. 
But then she does know me. Honestly, I am blessed. 
But for a second there, I felt what gay people must feel when they come out of the closet to the people who matter. 
Mom is a bit French, BTW. 
The conversation as follows: 

Bonjour mon Choux:
I see that I am speaking to an enlightened person.... what exactly did happen... a "coup de foudre"?

The Enlightened One Replies: 

"Hi Mom,
Just got in from watering and cleaning the green slime out of the watering trough. Turned the laundry machines over. Cooking chicken. As you can see, I am reaping no benefits from enlightenment! Where are my followers?
Nah, it was really simple, all that fuss from teachers and money paid and all that for nothing, I saw that the self is just an idea, does not really exist. Kind of like the Easter Bunny. 
The reason this is important is simply that we build so much on top of a self concept. Like self-protection, self-interest, self-centeredness, self-consciousness, selfishness. Fear of death and non-existence of self. So once the illusion of self is seen through, those patterns start winding down and you no longer suffer from the self stuff. It comes up as a thought, but you don't believe it and start building more stories. F'rinstance, if someone tells me I am stupid (usually a grain of truth in that), I can start a big old war, tell all my friends how mean that person is, think of all the ways that person is stupid, all the things I should have said to them....or just look at it for the truth and drop it. Very short work. Maybe tell (name of conflict artist here). Heh.
So the thing itself is very small, that one seeing. Once again, what the hell were all those teachers and books on about? And they all say it's small and simple and then write three books!

And the rest of it was recipe for no-bake cheesecake. 
If you would like enlightenment or a killer recipe for no-bake cheesecake, talk to us or check out the blog roll.
Love, Elizabeth

Friday, August 12, 2011

Deeply Personal Mental Representations

Just been listening to Eckhart Tolle again. The guy is brilliant, both to help get you to the Gate, and to lay out life after seeing that there is no "little I".
You are probably familiar with his concept of the pain body.
Short version:  The pain body is an energetic formation of thoughts that act as a entity, causing unfortunate and self-ish behaviours.
Adyashanti refers to "the shape-changing self" which is able to represent its interests in any situation. He talks of its grasping nature, the way each thought is turned to self-reflect.
Studies in evolutionary psychology and neuroscience tell a similar story. 
Humans appear to have a mental representation of the world, with an "I" at the centre.
This is useful for calculating what is good for YOU, in relation to the world you perceive. And perception helps construct a world as a mental representation, with an changeable representation of your 'self' in the centre.
This look a tad circular to you?
Constant referencing of self, in a world that is constructed as related to a 'self".  A closed loop. 
Yeah, makes me dizzy, too.
So Tolle, Adyashanti, psychology, neuroscience, and some western philosophers are saying that there is evidence for a self-representation, but not an actual, permanent, you.
There is an idea of self, but not an actual self.
Self is a deeply personal mental representation.
What we have been thinking of as our core self, is deeply, deeply unreal. Constructed. Impermanent.
What the sages and buddhas have been telling us is true.
If you actually see that the self is a remarkable illusion, you have seen what they saw.
If you would like a chance to step outside that closed loop of constructed self, and see what they saw, there is a simple and powerful directed process that points to no-self. You can start with someone on this blog, or the other blogs, or go to the Ruthless Truth site and start there.
It's free, and you do it while living your usual life.
I kind of like that, as tickets to India were not cheap, and you still had to come back and explain the neo-Buddhist stuff to your parents. Back in the day, y'all.
Yeah, I love the internet.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Linda's Story: She was looking


I’m 62 (or there abouts)—that qualifies me as a geezer, no doubt. In my 20’s, after more than several attempts at happiness through creating a lifestyle that matched my picture of happiness (land, garden, goats, boyfriend, no-boyfriend, you get the picture), I stumbled upon the idea of happiness through psycho-spiritual growth—i.e. self-improvement. Thus began decades of miserable seeking. I tried most everything that came across my path: all sorts of new age extravaganzas in the early years, then 12 Step programs (very helpful for living), various meditation practices, Sufism, Advaita, all of which point to “relief from the bondage of self”.

I knew all the words—said them often (often to others)—“you aren’t who you think you are”, no-self, only oneness, Unity, False Sense of Authorship…the intellectual understanding was present, but I never really experienced freedom from the sense of “me”. The “me” was still (subtly & secretly) expecting a big experience of Silence, or Unity (that “me” experienced & derived mystical benefit from), or at least something different from the ongoing unfolding of life.

A friend (we’ve been floating around the same seeker circles for some time) sent me links to RT, CompleteHumanity & a few others. I really related to CompleteHumanity—RT felt angry & harsh to me, though I read a few conversations & it got me started on fierce looking. From the reading & looking, I began to see that the sense of “me “ was just a thought form—I could see it arise & attach to most any situation—my feelings, my actions, my plans, my qualities etc. It took me a few days of reading to ask someone to work w/ me individually to get beyond the last sticking places of “me”. It was invaluable to have someone who had clearly seen through the illusion of a separate “me” point out my rationalizations & conceptualizations, and most importantly to keep me going back again & again to the question, “is there really a “me” here?” LOOK LOOK LOOK
I think the thing that popped things open or solidified the understanding was:

“The reason that you don't get the big emptiness you were looking for or expecting... is that 'I' has always been a thought. Nothing actually changes. It's ALWAYS been a thought. All that is different is that it is seen AS a thought.”

Good news & bad news, hahaha.
So what’s different, now? More relaxation, not taking EVERYTHING personally or self-referentially, more excitement about seeing life unfold, relief in really seeing that life will do what it does. I still experience the “me” thought arising & attaching, then the attachment slips away again, over & over. I still want to throttle people from time to time. I still have most of the same thought streams running. There is a softer seeing of all this—more spaciousness around whatever is arising, maybe. And there is humorous surprise that “it” is so ordinary, so no-big-deal, and yet so shockingly profound.

So…geezer? Definitely. Enlightened???? Not me.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

No-Self, Extreme Spiritual Detox

Welcome to our new blog.
We are three women who recently became enlightened, according to the criteria of seeing through the illusion of self.
We have had over 25 years apiece of seeking and not finding, so we are as amazed as anyone.
Which is odd as we have been earnestly sitting and moving house and paying teachers and engaging in practices in hot pursuit of the ineffable.
But apparently not expecting to FIND the ineffable. While being told that it is always and already there. By the supposedly enlightened, and the clearly enlightened.
Anyone else confused by this?
Hell, yes.
So we are delighted to announce that we managed this feat of seeing that there actually is not an "I" to be found by (drum roll, please) actually looking for it.
With the help and assistance of people working from the Ruthless Truth website, and their associated blogs.
Yes, people, it is now possible to get enlightened on the internet or social media platforms, for free, with the help of a person who got enlightened that way. Some people, very earnest and sincere people, have gotten 'it' from reading the blogs and site threads and connections.
Why would that sound like a joke?
However, if you have indeed been looking for your self in all the wrong places (and you know they are wrong because, erm, you haven't seen through the illusion or you wouldn't still be reading this) please do go and check it out.
Costs nothing, and you will not lose a single thing that is real. Guaranteed.
Here are a few links to get you started.
Note that there is a different tone to each site.
Pick one you like and get started, or start talking to us.