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I have posted an essay “three thoughts : chasing enlightenment”  (click to link)
and I’ve copied it below… (where, however, it lacks pictures)
three thoughts : chasing enlightenment 
Several friends have told me some interesting this lately… There was Dan, a few days back, asking me to ponder laughter. It isn’t just a resolution of “cognitive dissonance”, and the release of tension that comes with that, because that doesn’t explain the banana skin splat. Is the release in slapstick “thank God it isn’t me”! I don’t quite see… but, we can sense that release is… Hmm?
So then Dan asked, as a follow up to the release of laughter, asked me to ponder “enlightenment” : did he point towards zen koans tacitly positing that, again, there is indeed “release” in the light bulb “a ha!”
I don’t know if I can explain why I found this so “brill”. I guess it gave me a little ping of release….
Then I found what Brittany shared with me yesterday delightful: but… I feel I have to fill in some background here: so, with apologies, a list…
Spinoza’s substance: my intellectual friend, Terry, tells me that Spinoza said that everything can be reduced to a single essence, a substance, the God stuff.
Quiet abiding: Philips said that half a century ago, when he was first out east chasing enlightenment, meditating with gurus, he had a transportation into bliss, into ecstasy, and it lasted a full eighteen months, the high, it did indeed abided, but it was exhausting. Ecstasy is an agitation. And Philip says that the Buddha says, beyond bliss, beyond ecstasy, is quiet abiding. Tranquility.
Ananda: my friend Tee gave me a book on meditation by her guru, swamiji Nityananda. On page two Nityananda explained that the literal meaning of ananda is, that which cannot be lost or divided /diminished. (And that makes sense: the a is Sanskrit words denotes a negative sense of the whatever.) Ananda is quiet abiding, the God stuff.
“Kundalini awakening”, which In my circle might rather termed a “Spiritual Emergency”, is a rather sudden, often startling, overwhelming “waking”, associated with the subjective experience of “energy” flowing (usually) upwards. (Stanislov Grof edited an interesting collection of essays on the matter with the title: “Spiritual Emergence”)
And I want to mention Wilhelm Reich’s model of psychosis – Reich say that when the body, and the self, can’t contain the energies flowing through them, they overflow chaotically.
Finally let us note that there is an overlap of the several phenomena, psychosis, kundalini awakening/Spiritual Emergency , drug induced psychosis, and the mystic’s spiritual experience (awakening, ecstasy) are overlapping sets.
Brittany is a young woman, mid twenties: a musician. We just recently met at a writers circle. Yesterday we had our first tete a tete.
Brittany listened well while I spoke and spieled, and then told me, when I was ready to listen, some of her story. Four years ago, following on a moderately severe concussion (bicycle and an opening car door) that led to a troubled time of headaches and pharmaceuticals (pain killers and mild tranqs/diazepam’s) for some months : and then… what sparked it? She decided to cozy up to her existential and her personal; pain… and then she said, and for her this was the key, she didn’t try to transcend them. She cozied up and hung there : no rejection, judgement, and she woke! And Brittany said that the energy, the light, just fountained out of the top of her head, like water from a hose, pressure rising to the sky: and here Britany gestured with her hands above her head, a fountaining to the heavens . Then she said, “But if you try to stop it, like putting your finger in the hole to block it,” and she gestured again, finger to skull, “it goes thbbft” (something like that, like Bill the cat) … *
(Now note! this guidance, this story, isn’t for everyone. You have to ask yourself, always, about anything, “is this safe?” And, we live and die by our intuition.)
Finally, I saw Terry today, and I checked on my representation of Spinoza. Terry pointed out, added, that for Spinoza, “substance” was indivisible, like ananda, an indivisible God stuff.
Then we were talking about “oneness” and multiplexity. My realisation that in a literal sense there is no actual “duality”. There is, in some sense, oneness, and there is multiplicity. And Terry said that the mind is a singularity. Mind experiences the multiplexity: but mind itself is a oneness! Interesting. I will have to ponder this, but – curse of the intellectual – “oneness” surely is ineffable, imponderable and, quite possibly, just an abstraction. Mind, and God, as “singularities”. Hmm?
* Calvin sometimes said “THBPBPTHPT”, but I think he was quoting Bill the cat.

I’ve posted a new page on the “animal mind”

Further musings on the Animal Mind : self awareness



do take a look


Untitled: Three young women…

Three young women,    girls,
tees and jeans,    arms raised in that infamous salute
celebrating the murder of millions…    and I’m stopped.
Yes, they were teased before teasing, abused before abusing,
and love gets me where?
Shedding a tear in this Instagram world.     

The Posthumous Myth: “Like the artists who is only recognized after their death!”
How many times have we heard, said, and accepted this stereotype, often offered as a consolation for our lack of success. But, the last time I heard it, I stopped, and thought: “Who, besides Van Gogh? Hmm?”

So today I asked a very knowledgeable friend. And there are, it seems, many many French writers who were only discovered after they died. Ah, but this is not rue for the major Russian, German, English and American writers. It is just the French writers, and Van Gogh.

The artist discovered posthumously is an outlier, an exception to the rule.



Michael asked me to enquire about one of the great Buddhist mysteries: the teachings on “emptiness”. Stanley referred me to the doctrine of the three bodies.

Wikisays: a Buddha has three bodies (trikāya)

  1. The Dharmakāya or “Truth body” which embodies the very principle of enlightenment and knows no limits or boundaries;
  1. TheSambhogakāya  or “Bliss body”, a clear light manifestation; (Stanley says it is the “rainbow body” {not the clear light!})
  2. TheNirmāṇakāya, the “..” or “form body”,  which manifests in time and space.

The dharma body, the true body, is limitless and boundless :  I think, with a relatively easy pirouette of the mind, we can see an equivalence of the dharma body with “the void”, emptiness, nothingness (in this everythingness).

The bliss body, rainbow body, because it the “self existent light”, because it is flowing (every changing, impermanent), one might see that as gone (gatẽ) and therefore “empty”, void.

The manifest body: here I am going to refer us to my poem “three thought: in search of the mind” which discusses how things exist in one of three “quantum” phases – (a) the phase of probability (wave function) boundless, (c) the measured, observed, manifest, which is gone! which is “historic”, and (b) the transition between these two, the “collapse” of the “wave form”, which, I think, as we try to wrap our minds round that one, we might see as “not unlike” nothingness, emptiness, the void (note: Orwell has cautions against this phrase “not unsomething” as essentially empty!).

So the Buddha (what we all are, potentially) is, in one aspect, “limitless” :boundless”, and, in its other aspects, “gone”! (Tathageta : one who is gone).

gatê gatê paragatê, parasamgatê, boddi swaha :
gone, gone, really gone, gone way beyond,
“boddi swaha”? oh, don’t get me started.

I’ve posted an “essay” on matrilineal as against patrliineal societies (and the craziness all around us) at matriliny / partiarchy. Sane as against malignant societies.  (Please tell me if it is too terse!)

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