Posts Tagged ‘Andrew Cohen

13
May
09

time to go spelunking


The Challenge of Enlightenment

If the traditional realization of enlightenment is that everything is already perfect and whole, then why should anyone bother trying to improve themselves or the world? In the following excerpt from a classic dialogue between American Buddhist pioneer Roshi Bernie Glassman and EnlightenNext founder Andrew Cohen, these two teachers explore the potential danger of complacency and self-satisfaction on the spiritual path:

  COHEN: The challenge of enlightenment is that on one hand everything is already full and complete and already free and, at the same time, there is an overwhelming amount of suffering that urgently needs to be responded to in every moment.

GLASSMAN: Exactly. Some people experience that first stage and get caught there. They think, “There’s nothing to do.”

COHEN: Yes. And they may even use it as an excuse not to have to do anything. That’s how many people actually squelch the expression of their own conscience, their own humanity. That’s a pretty bad place to be.

GLASSMAN: That’s sort of where I started—trying to encourage people not to remain in that place. There’s a state in Japanese Zen that’s called the “Cave of Satan.” It’s that place where you just stay—because there’s nothing to do. And you can get in that state and it can be an overwhelming experience. But the point is to kick the person out of that cave.

16
Jan
09

why? why not?

prisoner3

So why the hell do you meditate? Everyone has their reasons. Individuals and teachers vary on this subject.  Usually there’s a common theme – it’s about tapping into something deeper than what’s typically going on, on the surface.
Some side effects of deeper can be peace, insight, centeredness,  health but it can also be terror, frustration, confusion, anxiety.  Few people tell you that second part.  Over identification with these “swinging doors” of positive and negative emotions or thoughts is the stumbling block or the prison.
Freedom for me is being the watcher, the observer who just notices what is arising. To notice what’s going on and very naturally let it go and move beyond it. That’s one reason I meditate. To remember the deeper me behind the ego. Remembering is needed since my ego likes me to forget.
So  do you meditate?  If so,  please share why – I wanna hear what you have to say.  Choose not to meditate? Post why not – I wanna hear that too . . . Below is an explanation on the purpose of meditation by Andrew Cohen that I  find useful.

The Purpose of MeditationQ: Why is it important to meditate?

A: You meditate to remind yourself that you’re not a prisoner. If there is power in your meditation, if your experience of the ground of being is deep and profound, you will discover and rediscover, over and over and over again, that you are not a prisoner. You are not held captive by your own mind; nor are you imprisoned by your own emotions. It sounds simple, but it’s so easy to forget. If all you are aware of is the endless rollercoaster ride of thoughts and feelings, of course you will believe you are trapped.

The ground of being is a deeper, infinitely more subtle dimension of your own consciousness that simply cannot be perceived by the gross faculties of the conditioned mind and ego.

You can’t see it; you can’t taste it; you can’t touch it.
So even if you have directly experienced the unconditioned freedom of that empty ground, when you return to the world of conditioned mind and ego, you’re likely to doubt it. The mind simply cannot cognize this ground, and the ego cannot know it. That is why it’s very important to meditate as much as you can. If you meditate regularly with a strong intention, you will keep rediscovering that you’re not a prisoner. You cannot recognize that enough.Until your conviction in your own freedom is unwavering and you’re able to prove it through unbroken consistency in the way that you live, you need to keep having that experience. Each and every time you realize that you’re not a prisoner, it gives you a deeper confidence in the limitless inherent freedom of that empty ground that is your own deepest Self. It builds a conscious conviction in no-limitation, and, as I teach it, this is the most significant purpose of meditation.

~ Andrew Cohen

http://www.andrewcohen.org/meditation/purpose-of-meditation.asp

13
Jan
09

Instant Karma, Karma Chameleon, Karma Police (there’s no escaping karma . . . in music)

karma incense

Okay, if you don’t have the incense to burn away your accumulated Karma, you might be interested in these definitions.  They are some of my favorite and each touch on very different aspects of Karma.  Sure,  I could post hundreds of aspects or viewpoints on the subject by teachers, musicians, poets . . .  Today, I just happen to like these three . . .
With open hands,
John

Karma is created every time you act out of unconsciousness, ignorance, and selfishness in ways that cause suffering to others. For most of us, karma is a powerful force—the accumulated momentum of literally countless actions. The momentum of karma is what makes the personal world of ego and unenlightenment appear so attractive to us.
The authentic self in each of us is compelled to become enlightened and perpetually evolve, but the ego is driven by the need to always be in control and ever remain the same. And it is the choices that we make in every moment that determine which part of our self will be creating our destiny. Each time we act out of ego, karma is instantly created.
Enlightenment means freedom from karma.

~Andrew Cohen
http://www.andrewcohen.org/teachings/volitionality.asp

It’s the law of interdependence—that every action produces a reaction, and that when you combine billions of actions with billions of reactions, and they begin to react to one another’s reactions…well that’s why it’s not as simple as if you do good, good things come back to you. Or if you do bad, that bad things will happen to you. Why? Because your karma could, boomeranging back toward you, come into contact with other streams of karma, either good or bad.
But if you want to keep things simple, live by these words:
“If you want to be happy, think of others. If you want to be unhappy, think only of oneself.” It’s the Buddhist version of Christianity’s Golden Rule: Do Unto Others as you would have Others Do Unto You.

~ Waylon Lewis
http://www.elephantjournal.com/2009/01/what-is-karma-alicia-keys-thinks-its-fate-actually-its-just-the-opposite/

“We are here to awaken from the illusion of our separateness.”
~ Thich Nhat Hanh

circle-hands-bwsm




Live'n Aloha on Maui.
Lately just posting pics, artwork, vids, & music with just a headline (less seems to be more).
Into Wilber, Beck, Zen Stuffs, Spiritual Concepts, Philosophy and Humor (kinda geeky humor).
Currently attempting to strengthen my meditation skills (this has been a 20 yr process).
Thanks for stopp'n by and please leave a comment. Poz or Neg, all comments welcome.
"I don't like Spam" (said with a British accent)

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