Notice

Great Sand Dunes Wilderness,Crestone Colorado

Notice

When you see the sun
Sun is all there is
When you smell the flower
Perfume is all there is
When you smile at that person
They are all that is
What indescribable joy
Just to be life, aware
This fluid point of awareness
Becomes all that is
A great secret
A great healing
Dissolving in what is

-Teala

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Poem: Vaccine

One year ago, they locked you away to keep you safe, but you died a month later

Yesterday, I received the vaccine that could have saved you

Today I feel so sad, so trapped. There is no vaccination against grief

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Shams and sewing your own robes

This article is going to be pithy, due to household duties.  But better to write something than not pen and share a good exploration.   

Last week I had a dream about my spiritual guide.  It was wonderful to see him.  Some people had gathered and were asking about how I came to experience  spiritual awakening.  As I started to explain my unfolding with my guide, he looked at me and shook his head.  In the dream it was quite clear he wanted none of what these folks were looking to instigate.  I thought of writing to my guide to mention the dream, but it felt like something I needed to understand within myself most of all.  

The projection process of indicating to another that some person or path has “produced” your experience or awakening really isn’t true, it is a misguiding of sorts.

A few years ago it came to me to learn more about the relationship between Rumi and Shams.  I was surprised to find that Shams disappeared. But the depth of communication Rumi and Shams had, itself, became a barrier to dissolution in God. 

http://www.dar-al-masnavi.org/rumi-shams.html 

It is also helpful to understand their relationship in terms of the sufi teaching of the stages of “passing away” or “annihilation” [fanâ]. In this particular sufi path, the disciple is encouraged to cultivate love for the spiritual master within the heart, to visualize the master in the heart or seated in front of one, and to remember the master frequently. This practice is said to lead to mystical experiences of seeing the spiritual master (or “beloved”) everywhere and the master’s beauty expressed in all things waking or dreaming). Mevlana seems indeed to have been in this type of “passing away in the spiritual presence of the master [fanâ fî-sh- shayk], because he wrote thousands of verses expressing his spiritual love for Shams in his Divan. Part of this particular teaching is that if this closeness with the spiritual master [shaykh] goes on too long, it can become a barrier to “annihilation in God” [fanâ fî ‘llâh]. And Shams suggested directly to Mevlana that he might have to go away for Mevlana to progress further. After Shams disappeared permanently, and after Mevlana recovered from his loss, it is said that Mevlana found Shams in his own heart. And in his last years, Mevlana composed thousands of couplets (the Mathnawi) in which he describes many unitive mystical experiences (usually spoken by one of the characters in a story), and rarely mentions the name of Shams. This is very much like “annihilation in God” following “annihilation in the master.”

In my own language,  the projection onto the teacher, as producing the spiritual experience, had to be released.  It has not been an easy process for me the last five years, and my spiritual guide wrote of this as the need for the student to make their own robes.

I recognized that nothing produces the ultimate spiritual state, and yet there I was in the dreaming process of experiencing the contact and communication with my guide seemed to produce it.  It became clear I needed to stop working with him to allow this to dissipate,  but the travails of my family life and the disillusionment with the patriarchal nature of the lineage my family was devoted to, have at times overwhelmed me. The extinguishment in God appears beleaguered!  It seems a joyless process in comparison to devotion to the spiritual friend.  

And yet I see with much more clarity that my own guide did not come to earth to have students projecting on him.  My certainty that devotion was the best thing for me and supported him at the same time was truly flawed.   So the dreaming process that drew me into this life was cut at its root – and there is not a sweetness to replace it.  I’m not complaining, it is just a statement.   Oddly, I find solace in the roughness of Nisargadatta Maharaj.  There are so few teachers who beat away the students rather than collecting them!  

N.MAHARAJ:” Just as a person continues going to work every day because he wants to receive his wages, so you keep coming here because you want to gain knowledge. Once you have this knowledge, there is no need for you to stay any longer.
Until you get the knowledge, you don’t want to leave; nevertheless, the only ones who should stay are those who feel a great urgency to know. (Maharaj sends some more people away.)
I do not want casual seekers to stay here anymore. The only ones who should stay now are those who have real anxiety about progressing spiritually, those who are earnest seekers.
If you are an earnest seeker, you should accept my words as the truth or you should leave, as I do not want merely to entertain you. And what am I telling you? You are not the body, you are the Conscious Presence. Accept it and you can forget it.
In the future, I will not be able to go into the problems of each one of you. I will simply tell you, ‘ This is false’, or, ‘This is the Truth’. You can accept what I say, or you can leave.”

-Seeds of Consciousness

 

 

 

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Reblog: What Your Spiritual Teacher May Not Be Saying

By Charlie Morris

People ask me why spiritual teachers and guru’s do not usually talk about the darkness, the pain, the anguish, the hardship, the emotions…of spiritual awakening.  Some do, most do not.  Why don’t they talk about it?  Because they haven’t been through it.  Why don’t they warn their students about it?  Because they haven’t been through it.

I can’t say strongly enough that you will be drawn to the teacher or healer who says what you are meant to hear for your learning.  I also can’t say strongly enough that what your teacher, healer, guru is doing while working with you, is meant for their healing as well.  Strip away the titles of student, devotee, guru, healer, client, teacher and what is left?  Two beings on a path to wholeness who are interacting in ways that will, one way or another, lead them to greater clarity.  Do not presume that your teacher is clear and without issues of their own.  Do not presume that you will not catch them being oh so incredibly human.  Perhaps that will be their most powerful lesson to you.  No one is here to “teach”.  No one is here to “heal”…or to be a “healer”.  Behind that whole show, we are all just working on the most basic level of learning how to exist in relation to unity and love.  As long as we perceive ahead and behind and up or down in comparison, then we can know that we are still learning.

What I find is more and more common right now, is that teachers do not teach from their personal experience.  They speak of awakening.  They speak about oneness.  They talk about these “things”.  But rarely do they relate to their students using themselves as an example of how they personally experience grounded day to day living.  I often get invitations from clients for me to check out some other teachers videos or writings or sayings or satsangs.  Sometimes I take a peek.  But mostly I don’t.  I experience most teachers and guru’s not being grounded in authenticity.  If authenticity is defined as the ability to be vulnerable, to speak plainly about your hurt, to share about your life in the center of the mashup…then I honestly can find more authenticity speaking to the grocery store clerk  or my mom, or my clients.  I am not being glib.  I see a great whitewashing happening with the proliferation of teachers at this moment.  As the upsurge of awakening occurs and unfolds, awakening happens in the mind first.  The heart of vulnerability is usually the last door to open.  This translates to people sharing honestly about how awakening is unfolding for them and being very excited to do so, but it is still a “mind” awareness that is not at the root level.  And I would not want to stop them.  Or discourage them.  What I am writing about here is naming the learning curve.  First comes awakening…then the teaching…then the grounding…then the humbling…then more awakening deeper than you thought it could possibly go.  I name this because what I “work” with a lot are people who work with “teachers”…and the teachers are sure that they (the teacher) are clear and have let go of their issues, their emotions, etc.  They are not being deceitful…it is a part of awakening, just the beginning though.  And then the student is left at a loss when their own awakening is much deeper and challenging than that of their “teacher”.   And when it includes emotions, and attachment, and anxiety and fear and many dark nights…they feel that something has gone wrong with them.  The teacher may also feel something has gone wrong.  Because after all…perhaps their awakening didn’t look like that.  So they do not know what it is.  This leaves the client literally in the dark, alone and suddenly unsupported.  This is part of the learning curve at work for all of us.  And it is what many well intentioned, but newly minted teachers do not yet teach, because they do not yet know.  They, and their students do not know that we are collectively at the crux of the dying off of the illusion that spiritual awakening is meant to feel good, cause us to live in bliss at all times, bring about monetary prosperity, eradicate uncomfortable emotions, engender peace within our hearts.  These oft promised things that your teacher may speak about…if they aren’t telling you about the long road ahead…if they aren’t telling you about what lies in wait…it may be because they haven’t been there.  And if they are not sharing about how it all fell apart and how their life ended…will they be able to support you when you do?  Most “teachers” do not talk about this process because they have not encountered just how deep the river cuts into the banks of illusion.  Yet, without them, your awakening might have never sparked off.

I love how life works.  I love this whole thing.  But the thing I love the most is honesty and vulnerability alive in the same person.  And more and more I see that spiritual seekers have more of both, than most of the teachers that they spend their time with.  For me, anyone who is vulnerable and honest is my teacher, in that moment.  Someone who is unafraid to share the whole thing is a rare thing to find.  I think of healing work more and more as a cocoon where two beings meet in the most truthful way…where they both show up without artifice and respond to the present truth right there in the room.  My first “teacher” in the lineage sense was not always vulnerable.  But she always taught that it is the love that heals and that nothing else matters.  When I listen to teachers today what I hear them saying is that love is all there is…and hardship and emotional pain and suffering does not matter.  And you know what…that is a lie.

Letting go of something doesn’t bring lasting peace, but loving what you wish to let go of can.

It is always the love that heals.  And vulnerability is sharing how love wraps itself around your existing hurts.  So, find a teacher who speaks about how they learned and still learn to love themselves…and compare how you feel around them to how it feels to listen to someone talk existentially about how you can awaken to a sense of no-self.

Good luck out there-

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Reblog: The Ironies of Spiritual Searching and Teaching

I’ve often returned to this article that Charlie Morris wrote years ago.  The theme of “sewing one’s own robes” has been predominant in my life and spiritual unfolding for the last five years.  The words he wrote are simple, but a rare litmus test…

By Charlie Morris

A spiritual seeker is, by default, existing in a state of delusion.  Someone seeking to become awakened should be approached with the greatest care, because they cannot see clearly.  When a person believes that they are not love, loveable, love itself, worthy of trust…it is a deep hole indeed.  When they cannot see that they are what they seek, then what chance does a “teacher” have to supposedly offer awakening to them?  The appearance that a teacher can offer awakening is a recalcitrant one.  And it is perpetuated by the need of a “teacher” to believe that they can offer it.  And it is perpetuated by the “seeker” who has a need to not face things within themselves, on their own, in the desert of the soul at night.

Seekers are in a deep illusion that the bliss or joy or wisdom in a teacher will somehow find its way to them, perhaps permeate into their being.  It won’t.  But it will have the appearance of doing so.   It can last for years.  A kind of awakening happens.  But it is like borrowing someone’s clothes to walk around in.  For your seeking to end…you must make your own robes.   Thread by thread and by and by the seeker will find themselves in a place of genuine intimacy with their heart and path in a way that no amount of sitting with another could ever bring.

Another irony of seekers is that they misdirect…they never ask for the thing that they came to heal.  They need one thing so very badly that they never name .  They ask about spiritual growth.  They ask about living in the light.  They ask about  awakening and how to do it.  What they never ask for is “how can I love who I think I am?”  And that is the most essential question of all.  They do not ask “how is love possible for me, please help me learn to love myself.”  The focus is nearly always on an ethereal and ungrounded kind of love and light and Awakening with a capital “A”.  These things are approached almost as if they are possessions to acquire.  They are also things that someone who finds their heart will discard along the way.

When your own heart is the one that soothes your own soul, you will not care about awakening…you will not care about enlightenment…you will not worry about how much ego is running old tapes.

I had this client once who exclaimed to me with all their might, in the most heartful and powerful voice I have ever heard…”I WANT TO LIVE!”  It was literally shouted.  And it wasn’t a triumphant voice.  It was not a confident voice.  It was the voice of someone that knew that love was the only thing left that could bring them out of their suffering.  They didn’t say “I want to awaken!” nor “I want love and light!”  That is the kind of place one must arrive at for love to immolate seeking.  Love for what you have endured must be humbly begged for.  And oftentimes, staying near a teacher for a long time shows you that another can love you…but at what point do you leave and discover how much love you truly have for yourself?

Being with a teacher can offer proof that deep love is real.

But until your teacher is gone, you will not find the last teacher your heart will ever need.

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Health article on Covid-19 and supplements

Supplements that may be helpful for Covid-19 symptoms

There are no supplements officially recommended for Covid-19 prevention. But… there are articles associating low Vit D3 levels with poor outcomes: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/landia/article/PIIS2213-8587(20)30183-2/fulltext

Having good support for Vit D, Vit C and Zinc levels is fundamental for fighting respiratory illness: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/immune-boosting-supplements#12

From the cases and articles that I’ve read, you have watch out for inflammation damage about 1-2 weeks after the first symptoms (Avg 8 days after symptoms: https://www.healthline.com/health-news/heres-what-happens-to-the-body-after-contracting-the-coronavirus#COVID-19-affects-lungs ).

If Covid-19 is going to get into your immune cells and possibly trigger cytokine damage, it typically happens a little later. Some people think they are better, and then it comes back with the inflammation damage. Do not let this virus sneak back up on you after you think you are well.

If you think you are at risk for cytokine storm, it may help to take quercetin (~500-1,000mg) daily. This is not an officially sanctioned recommendation, but information based on reading and personal experience:

If you have a positive result or risk regular exposure to Covid-19, you may want to consider taking Red Marine Algae (Gigartina skottsbergii) to help inhibit viral replication. My son and I used this when we had H1N1 flu. It is safe and readily available:

We lost my father to Covid-19 in April, 2020.  He was in a skilled nursing facility and we had no way to visit him for 5 weeks before he fell ill.  It is one of my deepest regrets that I was not able to help him with this information.   But his best friend back in our hometown also fell ill with Covid-19, and I was able to send these supplements to his family. They all recovered or did not come down with Covid-19.

I receive no financial benefit for this article, nor have any involvement with the companies/products I linked into this article.  I am merely sharing information that may be beneficial.

This article is also linked on my site at:
https://theunbrokenstreamoflife.wordpress.com/health-articles/covid-19/

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Poetry: The Floor

Sometimes it’s already been written so well by another….

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Poem: lost

Too much is stripped
At once, you’re lost

Can I lose all this
And somehow return?

Am I fighting the way
It is supposed to be?

Just stay still in
This astronaut emptiness

The ashes are the birth
Place of serenity

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Is it just the absence?

We lost my father to Covid-19 about five weeks ago.   These are the last few family photos we were able to take together.

There is still so much to process about how we lost my dad, in the midst of so much to process about what is happening because of Covid-19.   We started a remembrance site for him, which at least gives us a way to have a memorial when we can’t have a service.  But I’ve also been going through some difficult mental/emotional states and recognitions – which in general folks chalk up to “grief”.

I’m sure much of grief is just the sheer “absence” of the one you love crossing over and no longer being here on earth.  All the day to day love,  the roles we have that give our lives shape are suddenly gone.  There is emptiness where there used to be daily expressions of love.   It’s like phantom limb syndrome every time you look at something and realize they aren’t here any longer.    And that’s even without sudden or disturbing circumstances around their death…

Over the last five weeks I’ve been feeling something that is a different way to look at “grief” though.   It is tied to a discussion I had with my energetic healer when we first talked about his awakening.    He had a client who had died, and around that time had a very challenging energetic awakening emergency.  I remember saying it was like his client had pulled him into the “bardo”when they died. (Description of the Bardo here)

What if what we attribute to an absence of a person in our lives, is more specifically an awareness of what we are when we aren’t incarnated,  and a deeper awareness of what is underneath us all when we are incarnated?  An awareness of an unlimited and untethered space, which doesn’t compute well with our normal thinking mind, but becomes more present – because that is “where” our loved one has dissolved into?  Our connection to our loved one “pulls” us into this space.

I wrote about my lack of functioning yesterday, and got lots of good advice about self-care during grief back in return:

What does it mean when you can’t function well without some form of caffeine and you’re disillusioned by most goals (even the noble “spiritual” ones) you’ve held most of your life. Then your country & the world are staggering under the weight of serious pandemic (not to mention severe political debasement) – so most future goals are trammelled anyway. Is that just the culmination of a “mid-life” crisis? 🤦‍♀️

For me the disillusionment is not only the absence of my father in human form, or the absence of the caring roles and comfort of family love.  The disillusionment comes from seeing through the impermanent nature of most of what we focus on in human life,  “samsara” if you will.  It is not just grieving and grasping what is lost – it is stark recognition of the uncertainty of certainty, the impermanence of what appears permanent and the actual lack of producing what is sought by what we desire and work so hard at.   In the midst of many people leaving the earth  due to Covid-19 – the disorientation many people are experiencing could be due, at least in part, to this  stark recognition.

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Poem: Delusional

The words make sense
But the sense of the words does not
I’m being climbed up a staircase
Of delusion
Just listening
To these thoughts

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kindness: “The Worth of Cherry Blossoms”

I thought I had already posted this poem by Rengetsu on my blog – but when I searched I couldn’t find it. But this blog post by Karen King recounts Rengetsu’s life story, along with the painting from “Kindness” about Rengetsu’s poem “The worth of cherry blossoms.” So I am reblogging it to share this haunting and exquisite poem – and more than that, I am reminding myself of what sustains me, even during difficult karmic circumstances.

a life with the sea

I found this story in a children’s book, “Kindness, A Treasury of Buddhist Wisdom For Children and Parents,” and wanted to share it.  It was collected and adapted by Sarah Conover, the illustrations are by Valerie Wahl (I will try to photograph the one which goes with the story).  The story is called “The Worth of Cherry Blossoms”, and nice fit for Earth day, I belive.

In Japan two centuries ago, there lived a Buddhist nun named Rengetsu. Her life as a nun began tragically, after her husband and young children died. To support herself, she worked as a potter, a poet, and an artist.  Her exquisite poetry gained her instant fame. She soon found herself moving from one home to the next, trying to avoid the constant press of customers.

Although Japan named her a Patron Saint of the Arts, she never held on the the money her art…

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