Thursday, December 17, 2009

Without the ego, what suffers?

Happy Holidays everyone!

I hope you enjoy this mid-Dec SEW Book Club Newsletter....

Without the ego, what suffers?
(We do not die!)
by BH

This time of year is so dark, so cold.
For the past couple of years,
I take this time largely
to retreat from human interactions
and spend much time in silence.

I would like to share with you
some recent profound revealed insights:

I have been dealing with death issues lately.
Death and Impermanence.

Been inspired by the work of Eckhart Tolle lately,
(and A Course in Miracles, Yoga, Buddhism, NVC :) of, I hope you all can make it to the
Eckhart Tolle's "A New Earth"
book discussions
at River Read Books in Jan!!

Sat. Jan 2 @ 11am
Wed Jan 13 @ 6:30pm.

This is one of the best spiritual books I've found in a long time!

Eckhart Tolle in a nutshell:

Notice the Ego,
Practicing Stillness.

One can see expansive vistas when one does!

This came up for me while reading this book
(and discussing this with local folks,
@ ACIM, Vishnu's Couch etc)

This is IT! Here it is:
Here is the secret to happiness.
Men have accumulated and spent fortunes for this.
Men have conquered nations for this secret.

Here is all of Yoga, Buddhism, and Vedanta,
posed as a little thought experiment:

Q:Without the ego, what suffers?

Think about that for a while.
Try for about 30 min.

What I find is this:

Without the notion of a separate self, there can be no story. Without the story, there can be no suffering!

Simply noticing the internal experience

frees one from the bondage
of blaming the external world
for our experience of suffering:
which involves a judgment and a story

about "this crappy miserable suffering existence"
we seem to have been given.

Model showing components of mind: perception, cognitave, emotional, affectWithout the ego, there are no judgments.
Without the judgments, there can be no story.

There are simply perceptions + body sensations,
there are thoughts, emotions, affect.
These things arise, then pass away.

When the personal-"I" goes away,
the suffering goes away too!

Without the story, the judgments, and the separate self,
there is nothing left to suffer!

Now the story many people are afflicted with is:

"My life is so bad!!! Boo Hoo!"

This is the source of the suffering.
When the story is dropped, the suffering is over.

Tell me, how will you suffer?
If you lose your job?
Lose your home?
Lose all your money?
If people told lies about you,
if your reputation fell into disrepute?
if you were publicly blamed, shamed, or humiliated?
Would you suffer?

Will you suffer if your car is repossessed?
Will you suffer if your body changes?
Will you suffer if you lose a limb?
Lose your eyesight or hearing?
If you could never have sex again,
or never taste food again.
Would you suffer?

If your mother or father dies?
If your best friend, or lover dies or leaves you?

If false charges are brought against you.
If you spend some time in jail,
if you are deprived of food, water, or sleep,
if you were raped or tortured?

Would you suffer if these things happened to you?

... *Are you sure?* ...

If you say yes to any of these,
consider any one of them individually.
Could you survive it?

Yes, of course you could! :)
And plenty of people do.

Could you still have a joyful experience of living?
Could you still do useful, helpful things with your life energy?

Is there anything which would be so bad as to cause you to suffer?

Anyone who fully realizes noticing practice,
gains super powers and great merit,
and loses all fear :)

Now, if you can fully,
be present in the moment,
without the insessant chatter
of the egoic thinking mind,
you will notice...

All that is left
the "ever present witnessing awareness".

The small self dissolves into the Universal Self,
Like Tolle, I believe this is what Jesus called
the Kingdom of Heaven.
This is the Higher Self.
This is the Holy Spirit which lies within.

We connect with it in stillness.
When we connect with it,
we gain all powers.
We lose all fear.

It is the subtle, pure, pulsating life energy
which courses through our bodies
in each moment, which operates
well below the level of thought.

It has been around for such a long time
to be, essentially, ever lasting.

Practically speaking, the true Self
is not subject to time-bound experience,
nor confined to any particular body.

It only perceives the world and itself
in the ever changing now.

There is only One.
Call it the Witness.
We are all connected to it, a part of it.
Every worm, every bird, every bug.

And if humans evolved fish,
and fish evolved from rocks,
then there must be consciousness in the rocks.

Or if humans were created in the image of God,
then there must be prior consciousness in God.

If all life on planet earth dies,
the conscious still exists in the rocks,
or in the mind of God.

The true self, The Witness, does not ever die!

Reminds me of a song by my friend Lynda, who describes when she received this insight.

We Do Not Die
by Lynda Millard

Why did you tap me on the shoulder
in my sleep last night
telling me I should write this song now
that the time is right
They're gonna think I've lost my mind...
some of them might be unkind
when I say "There is no hell!"

We do not die
we are not gone, we are alive
we are just on the other side
we are not dead, we are alive
We do not die

Photo by Saveena (AKA LHDugger)
They're gonna wonder how I got this information here
What will they say when I tell them you whispered in my ear
How can I prove their greatest fears
have been unfounded all these years
The truth is... There is no hell!

We do not die
we are not gone, we are alive
we are just on the other side
we are not dead, we are alive
We do not die

So many people have seen the light
of what they thought was the end in sight
I'm not the only one who shares this bold philosophy
I can only say that what I saw is plain to see
But I was once a skeptic, too
until the day I heard from you
and you said "There is no hell!"

We do not die
we are not gone, we are alive
we are just on the other side
we are not dead, we are alive
We do not die

Lyrics by Lynda Millard
Music by Lynda Millard, Ginger Doss
and Velvet Hammer [now DreamTrybe]
© 1996 Glass Umbrella Music/ASCAP

Thank you to all my teachers
esp. Edmond, Mickey, Vera, and Lynda,
ACIM, Deepak Chopra, and Eckhart Tolle
for helping me understand this
in a deep way.

Bill Huston
Binghamton NY Phone: 607-321-7846

Binghamton-area discussion; spirituality topics:
Watch for Open-To-Everyone TV!

No comments: