Red pill or blue pill?

How do we collapse our story in that moment of mounting friction, hostility, and contraction around a perceived so monumental difference? We can start by recognizing that whatever narrative, whatever story we cleave to is but a narrative; one among billions. We can bring our awareness to observe thoughts come and go the way clouds cross the sky. Have trouble identifying what a thought is? Two main forms: mental image, and mental talk. We most often animate painful experiences by calling to mind mental images and thoughts of that past moment, often long past moment, which is not this present one. See how we get stuck in stories and our often facile conclusions of what went down? When an image or inner talk occur; we can just notice that they are occurring. Whether a thought's content/meaning is worth your time can be determined on the basis of whether that meaning furthers habitual knee jerk reactivity or a meta-perspective. We can recognize the limitation in believing [...]

By |2018-06-09T11:31:59-05:00June 9th, 2018|Philosophy|1 Comment

Cognito Ergo Sum

Today discussing with friend Sam the infamous Descartes decree: Cogito Ergo Sum, Sam said: What? Isn't it CogNito Ergo Sum? No, I replied, it's recorded as Cogito; Cogito Ergo Sum. Then I said, yeah, wonder if it was a typo at which I was seized by a cathartic fit of laughter. Missing N. Imagine that? And how different the planet today would be if we recognized, in our direct experience from one moment to the next, the vital difference between Cogito Ergo Sum and Cognito Ergo Sum. Cognito Ergo Sum: I am aware therefore I am. I am not a Latin scholar, so if I mis-conjugated Cognito I request your clemency; you get the idea. Thank the heavens I am not my thoughts; not my compulsive or even ordered thinking. Without first awareness wherefore thoughts? How does it help me to embody fullest presence to be identified with thoughts? Anything I can observe, including thoughts in the form of mental images and mental talk, [...]

By |2018-06-09T11:32:04-05:00June 9th, 2018|Philosophy|Comments Off on Cognito Ergo Sum

Holding the Space for the Living

What does it mean to hold space? Refraining from judgment, from the impulse to fix, from the impulse to extrude, from the impulse to clutch in the fist of rightness. Before we go into panic mode tightening around our narrative, tightening around what appears to us to be happening, we can just breathe, release, smile, and get out of the corner of only my interpretation. Thus instead of latching on to the crises, the violation, the wrongness of a thing, the harm of a thing, we can know the space that holds it, that yields it, and thereby have a chance to invoke healing. But does this mean we remain unresponsive zombies in conversation because we're privileging holding space? No. We respond from a place of having acknowledged spaciousness. We can laugh a little and recognize that my inner jungle gym exists in space, and I don't need to identify with it so strongly. We radically condition each other. How do we interact [...]

By |2018-06-09T01:47:40-05:00June 9th, 2018|Philosophy|Comments Off on Holding the Space for the Living

Still There

Jordan Peterson since well before the publication of his best-selling book 12 Rules for Life has been making a splash with, among other dicta: clean up your room; the idea being that if you can't bring attention, decency, and integrity to your corner of the world you have no right to hold placards, march, or otherwise demand policy etc. changes in the broader world. Self-mastery first, he asserts. I agree. I am reminded of my early days of Buddhist training in Howell NJ with my late Teacher Khensur Lobsang Tharchin. During a period after older attendants had relocated elsewhere and before newly appointed attendants had arrived from India, my duties included caretaking, cooking, admin work, yard work and general serving at the Temple in Howell. The very first week I had brought down his lunch tray and placed the dishes in the sink. Pulled away to attend to other tasks that included admin work for a grant-funded project, I forgot about the dishes. [...]

By |2018-07-02T12:37:09-05:00April 12th, 2018|Philosophy|Comments Off on Still There

That Grand Ballroom

We each have a story, or a storyline we may strongly identify with, depending upon our OS, so to speak, inherited or acquired through the force of conditioning, habit, upbringing, environment, experiences, etc; the conditions that most closely relate to our particular expression of aliveness, many of which we are not conscious of. That storyline tends to reinforce our identities. If we identify strongly as this or that (insert labels here), our story will relate to this or that. Being strongly identified with a thing, even a very good thing, means at some level rejecting, even if subtly, all things that are not it, unless the thing we identify with is or stands for no-fixed-identity. In other words, strong identification can be a limiting habit. Often, our story is not the story of the moments of clarity and insight we may have, since such moments require or demand no qualification. Such moments belong to something irreducible and ineffable and indefinable. If we are [...]

By |2021-04-05T07:19:47-05:00August 23rd, 2017|Philosophy|Comments Off on That Grand Ballroom
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