The Observer Gets To Decide

You can not silence the monkey mind.

As soon as I ask you not to think of a blue unicorn, you already have. If you are meditating to eliminate internal dialouges you will be disappointed and very frustrated because the internal dialogues will only get louder as your attention is drawn to your inability to stop thinking. Even in sleep, ruminating mind continues its quest to extact value and meaning from experience.

The point of meditation is silence. When we are absolutely still, our nervous system has an opportunity to reset itself.

The silence is a physical stillness. The silence is the first step towards self control; self mastery. (4.7-8).

Dialouge Replacement is the technique in which we introduce internal dialogues that support our ideal state. By meditating on these optimal dialouges, we must, neccesarily, sacrifice unwanted dialouges because conscious mind can only focus on so much at any given time. These new dialouges create new subconscious beliefs and repetition reinforces them. This is the essence of mantras, and functions by the law of growth.

(2.28) The law of growth depends upon reciprocal action. The individual is complete at all times and this makes it possible to receive only as we give.

Thought is substance in equalibrium (2.30), and this substance is constantly changing form based on where we direct our attention. In other words, our experience of conditions is a result of our directed attention.

Increasing our practice

Increasing our practice is essential. By increasing our practice we must, neccesarily, adjust our habits. This brings unconscious patterns into awareness. Awareness allows us to consciously replace habits with intentional rituals (your practice).

The more we can remain conscious observers of experience rather than lose ourselves in the drama of conditions, the richer and more rewarding experience will become.

Pattern Interupts is a technique where the individual introduces discipline (ritual) into their life for the purpose of replacing how they spend time; ensuring time is spent in action that supports an ideal state.

The Observer State is the ideal state because the Observer gets to decide.

Deep Dive #3: Duality

(3.21) Extremes are designated by distinctive names such as inside and out, top and bottom, light and dark, good and bad.

(3.22) These are not seperate entities but parts or aspects of the whole.

Tantra often talks of “the end of duality.” This refers to the dissolution of judgement with regards to extremes, as refernced in 3.21-22. The end of duality does not mean that “good” and “bad” in the moral sense do not exist, rather that we do not judge experience as it happens to us. Karma comes to us as a result of our thoughts and actions. Thus, it should be clear that Tantra advocates the importance of personal responsibility. The end of duality is NOT an abandonment of morality.

Deep Dive #2: Breath

Awareness of breath is often repeated in meditation and yoga circles. Intellectual knowledge is irrelevant to our well being unless we integrate knowledge. Thus, our awareness of breath must go beyond head knowledge into the realm of our experience.

Correct breathing begins with an exhale. This means your default position-how you find yourself when engaged in activities-should be with lungs full of oxygen. For this resons, athletes are trained to act in sync with the exhale. With lungs full of air, the mind tends not to wander. With lungs empty, ruminating mind begins chattering.

Holding the breath can be an effective strategy to keep us in the present moment, as long as we remain conscious that we are doing it, and why. If you train yourself to hold your breath as a default position, you will discover a whole new set of problems develop. All psychosomatic change will produce a result. The conditions of that result (desired or undesired) depend upon a continuing awareness of how our thoughts and actions influence experience.

Tantrics are often reluctant to share techniques because without discipline and consistency they can be harmful to the physical body. This includes advanced nostril breathing.

In many ways the subconscious is already doing a fine job keeping the body running. How much do you want to compromise subconscious behavior? Put another way, if you could devote your concentrated attention to anything, why devote it to something the subconscious is already doing well? You don’t have to tell your heart to pump or make any of the millions of decisions to keep you alive, so think very carefully before you start tinkering with what’s already working or you may mess it up.

Like all strategies, unless they are constantly developing, they can turn from tools into weapons. Intentional repetition loses its effectiveness when it becomes habitual, which is why we must constantly introduce new challenges to our practice.

Tantra is not about quick fixes but about cultivating mastery, which is an ongoing task.

Complexes, Ego Identity, & Love

He who perceives all beings in his self, and his self in all beings, never criticizes. ~ Isha Upanishad (6)

At the core of our existence is authentic being/Supreme Self (SSElf). SSElf is insulated by clusters/complexes of repressed/un-confronted emotional residue which limit our ability to give expression to authentic being/SSElf. We acquire our complexes as a result of entanglement with ego identity. Ego identity is created by concepts, emotions, judgements and perceptions we make–as a result of becoming attached to our sensory experience–that are not in harmony with Natural Law.

Love is the highest expression of Natural Law/Universal/God/SSElf. Everything else is Ego. All life is a creative expression of the Universal, hence, creative expression is love.

How we treat and speak and think of others reflects the degree of harmony between ego and the Universal/SSElf. The greater the harmony, the greater the expression of love.

We may eliminate complexes by increasing the amount of love we possess.

“Anything you cling to is ego. Ego gets a boost by clinging onto things. Anytime you are able to let go, you are in love.” ~Om Swami

DSC01093.jpg

Reykjavik, Iceland

Never Less Than Perfect

Craving and revulsion are physical (negative) expressions of divine (positive) emotions. The job of ego is to interpret tangible experience to intangible Self/essence. The nature of Self/essence is like a portion of water contained within the vessel of the physical body. All Self/essence (water) originates from the same source, which means that all physical identify is superficial. Water does not cease to be water when placed in a cup. Vessels create identity, and with identity comes judgement. We don’t compare water, we compare vessels.

(8.21) Every system of metaphysics depends upon a knowledge of the truth concerning ourselves and the world.

(8.22) The real “I” is spiritual and can, therefore, never be less than perfect.

Behavior Regulation is the unique feature shared by all religious and spiritual systems, and mimicked in politics. The Overman regulates their own behavior. They become a master over the impulses of the body, and in doing so, become a master oner the impulses of mind.

“Evil” is any mental or biological impulse/drive operating on a subconscious level that is not serving the greater good of the individual and their community.

“Good” is our recognition and ability to control our mental and biological impulse/drives. Recognition is consciousness.

This conflict between extremes is polarity, and forms the basis of all internal and external conflict.

Self doubt is an expression of polarity.

Self confidence is developed by cultivating will power. Begin each day stating a goal you must complete before evening. Start small. The important thing is to accomplish this task above anything else. Your ability to follow through with a task is your ability to move beyond ruminating mind into a mental state of liberation. With time, increase the challenge of your task to ensure you never let your confidence and ability wither.

DSC06268.jpg

Reykjavik, Iceland

Rumination Filter

(7.11) The degree of harmony we attain is determined by our ability to appropriate what we require for our growth from each experience. 

The quickest way to transcend suffering and obliterate negative rumination is to attach value and meaning to conditions; to learn something. Value and meaning give purpose to hardship, and purpose is what mind is attempting to locate during rumination.Thus, if we can create or identify a lesson in our experience, mind will quit trying to come up with reasons to rationally explain what–in many cases–can not be rationally explained in a satisfying way.  More often than not, rumination involves reliving the past or imagining the future. Our rumination filter is the method by which we interpret all experience.  Our predominant mental attitude is the blueprint for the construction of our rumination filer.

Þingvellir.jpg

Þingvellir, Iceland

 

Seeing Things For The First Time

(7.20) Many seem to think knowledge applies itself which is, by no means, true.

How did it happen?

Sometimes we can pinpoint exactly when a source point has been created. Source Points are when new dialogues are introduced.

There are four gross aspects of mind:

  1. manas (mind)
  2. citta (consciousness)
  3. buddhi (intelligence)
  4. ahamakara (conception of one’s individuality/ego)

(1) Thoughts or desires begin in mind. If we do nothing, the thought/desire ends. (2) If we deliberate or consider it, this is consciousness. (3) Intelligence decides wether to pursue thought/desire. (4) If we pursue thought/desire into reality, it is passed onto ego, an individuals sense of identity apart from others.

In some cases, the event is so insignificant that we are unaware a new dialouge has begun. These are the ones that most often highjack us-when our guard is down and we are relaxed. Just like a physical altercation, if you are relaxed, yoy will end up in better shape. So it is with a mental altercation. The catch is, this can also be a source point for suffering. Suffering is when you feel responsible for what was not in your control and avoid responsibility for what was. The longer you do either, the more intense your suffering. The sooner you resolve either, the sooner you can let go and move forward.

Progress happens when we integrate knowledge we have learned. Without progress, we will continue on the wheel of suffering. Many try to busy themselves with distractions or addictions. Some people do this to intentionally to hide from confrontation, others do this ignorantly because we can not see awareness they have never been aware of. This is why integration and transformation always seem so profound, because we are constantly seeing things for the first time.

 

Viday.jpg

Viðey, Iceland

 

Awareness of Opportunity

(7.16) Desirable conditions are secured by entertaining desirable thoughts only.

(7.77) Undesirable conditions are brought about by thinking, discussing and visualizing conditions of lack, limitation, disease, inharmony and discord of every kind. This mental photography of erroneous conception is then taken up by the subconscious and the law of attraction inevitably crystalizes it into objective form. That we reap what we sow is scientifically intact.

The greatest misconception about the law of attraction concerns the tendency to put the cart before the horse. The modern conception of the law of attraction is with regards to physical possessions or events. This is the great error.

When we speak of conditions we do not refer to physical/material conditions but states of being/consciousness. Our greatest power is our ability to control our state of being-our predominant mental attitude. More than anything else, our predominant mental attitude is responsible for creating states along the spectrum of inner peace through to inner catastrophe. These inner-states determine our perception and perception is awareness of opportunity.

We always have opportunity to control inner conditions. Often, a change of inner conditions will result in a change in outer conditions. If our awareness is limited, we are unable to recognize opportunity to instigate change. Inability is a reflection of our stubbornness or resistance to instigate change. Inability is a state of mind not an absolute truth.

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
Snæfellsnes Peninsula.jpg

Snæfellsnes Peninsula, Iceland

 

Insight Enables

Too often we look to situations beyond our control as the defining factors of our experience. Instead, we may begin to understand conditions as perceptions, or states of being.

Our purpose in life is to maintain our internal ecosystem. Sleep, hydration, nutrition, thoughts and exercise are all facets of this maintenance. As a part of nature, we will always be subject to forces beyond our control. This makes it so important to be ahead of the curve when it comes to what we do control. Being prepared mentally and physically ensures we are better prepared to face adversity when it arises.

(7.15) The law of love-which is the creative principle of the universe, adds vitality to thought while the law of attraction brings the necessary substance to growth.

(7.18) We can overcome every fear, lack, limitation, poverty and discord by substituting principle from error.

DSC05674.jpg

Pacific Ocean, Iceland

 

Tuning In

(6.7) Concentration is the highest personal achievement that can be acquired. It is the distinguishing characteristic of every successful person.

Mind is in a constant state of activity. Concentration is like tuning the radio dial so that you only hear one station clearly. This happens naturally when we are so completely absorbed in a situation that we are conscious of nothing else. More often than not, this takes work because it is rare to be so absorbed.

It takes work because mind is already active and we must consciously introduce a new dialouge that can drown out the rest.

(6.8) Concentration may be acquired by faithfully practicing mental exercise.

Mind is programmed to ruminate. As long as it’s ruminating upon a dialogue that supports our ideal state, we will benefit from this process.

Rumination is the process of mind that seeks to resolve the reason for phenomena.

DSC05587.jpg

Menntaskólinn við Sund, Reykyjavik, Iceleand