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You are not who you think you are. You are not that face you see in the mirror every morning. You are not someone’s child, or someone’s parent, or partner or friend. You are not the physical body you admire or criticize when you take a shower, or when you get dressed.
Neither are you the profile description on your social networking page, or your high school diploma, your driver’s license, or your title at work. You are not defined by your career, or the things you own, or the family…Continue
Added by Anthon St Maarten on June 8, 2012 at 8:30pm — No Comments
Vipassana means ‘insight’ in the ancient Pali language.
Somewhere on day five, half-way through the ten-day meditation retreat that Raji Lukkoor attends and records engagingly in…
Added by Raji Lukkoor on November 21, 2011 at 10:23am — No Comments
Added by Raji Lukkoor on November 21, 2011 at 10:19am — No Comments
The Buddha advocated the three marks of existence: dukkha, or that suffering is inherent to life; anicca, or that…Continue
Added by Raji Lukkoor on September 10, 2011 at 11:30am — No Comments
When setting out on a quest of spiritual discovery, it’s often assumed the first step involves finding a spiritual master. But few people take the time to ask themselves what a spiritual master actually is, if they really need one, or what the upside and downside might be. Without knowing the answers to these questions, we can easily be side-tracked or become discouraged.
Let’s begin with the difference between a teacher and a master. This is not to say that we can’t learn something…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on May 17, 2011 at 1:39pm — No Comments
You can probably think of a time you’ve played the ‘double-bind’ game. You probably had no desire to play, but that didn’t matter since your agreement was not required. The game takes at least two to play, one person to set up an impossible situation, and another person who must try to deal with it. The game starts when the first player sends a conflicting message, either stated or implied. The message is such that it cannot be ignored or escaped. This message will be so contrary, the…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on May 15, 2011 at 3:45pm — No Comments
When asked to recall our most unforgettable experiences, we often bring up something that marked a turning point in our life. It could be something that brings a smile, or something we’d rather forget. Other times the experiences that mean the most to us would appear silly or meaningless if we tried to talk about them to someone else. There are two fascinating things that happen concerning experience, but we rarely think about either of them.
1. Our experiences begin to define us…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on May 12, 2011 at 11:22am — No Comments
We realized years ago that our favorite movies featured heroes who were willing to take extraordinary risks. Almost always, the risks involved a quest that took the hero into the unknown and demanded that they find something of great value within themselves. Sometimes the hero had super powers they had yet to realize, or they needed to learn how to wield them properly. Other heroes were normal people willing to dig down into the depths of their own courage to prevail against fearsome…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on May 9, 2011 at 11:30am — No Comments
Few things are mentioned in connection with the Divine as often as love and light. Since we can express love ourselves, we appreciate it more readily. But light can tell us a great deal about the Divine, the universe and our own true nature. Light has several meanings in spiritual teachings, but science has recently contributed information that can take our understanding even further.
In Christianity, the contrast between light and darkness are often used to symbolize the duality of…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on May 5, 2011 at 1:05pm — No Comments
We all like to think that we’re our own master, that we make our own decisions and shape the life we live. And indeed, this is a universe that supports free will. A few weeks ago, we posted a blog on free will that also covered the subject of determinism, a variation on fate that’s based on cause and effect. Determinists claim that we only think we have free will because the cause is so far removed from the effect; we don’t see the connection. On the other hand, there appears to be a new…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on May 1, 2011 at 2:49pm — No Comments
How would you feel if a friend insisted that you burn down your house? Your first thought would probably be that they needed to get psychiatric help as quickly as possible. But this was exactly what the Sufi sage Rumi suggested that we all do, “Destroy your own house, destroy it now! Don’t wait one more minute! Pull the whole house down!” Why was he so adamant that we get to work immediately? He promises, “A treasure greater than Pharaoh’s is hidden under it,” but there is a catch, “you can…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 28, 2011 at 12:33pm — No Comments
We recently posted the tweet, “Discovering the Self depends on abandoning the self, not improving it,” and then felt that it was important to say a little more on the subject. The tweet itself was inspired by the proliferation of internet gurus who promote self-improvement that masquerades as spirituality. Don’t get us wrong, we have no issue with self-improvement and have participated in quite a bit of it ourselves (some might argue it didn’t take, but that’s another story). The problem…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 26, 2011 at 12:30pm — No Comments
In many ways the world hasn’t changed much since Jesus walked the earth. As he said, “You will always have the poor with you,” and we certainly do. Hunger, disease, exploitation, oppression, wars and natural disasters also continue, although on a larger scale. The universe also continues to operate as it did in Jesus’ day; however, our understanding of it has become much clearer. Quantum physics is radically changing our view of the universe and our place in it. Not only are quantum…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 24, 2011 at 12:20pm — No Comments
Most often when people talk about faith, what they really mean is belief. Although the thesaurus considers belief, faith and trust to be interchangeable, from a spiritual standpoint, belief bears very little resemblance to faith.
When someone says they believe, they’re saying they have a strong conviction that something outside them is true even though they have no proof that it is true. In the case of religious beliefs, conviction is usually based on a static set of doctrines…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 21, 2011 at 5:29pm — No Comments
In our world, nothing stays the same for very long. We’re taught to rely on the advice of experts, but their opinions seem to change with the breeze. If you knew that something had remained unchanged for over two thousand years and had continued to help people find the peace and joy they were seeking for that entire time, would you be curious?
The perennial philosophy is a golden thread of spiritual thought that can be found in virtually all cultures and time periods. It’s a group of…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 19, 2011 at 12:31pm — No Comments
In Part 4 we’ll continue the discussion that focused on our true identity. In Part 3, Jesus used symbolic language to demonstrate that we are not the body or personality we see in this world. In fact, they are a constraint that keeps us from seeing who we really are. In the 4th and final part of the essay, we’ll discover that identity.
Quantum physics is just beginning to unravel some of the mysteries of the universe that were clear to spiritual masters centuries ago. …Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 17, 2011 at 2:15pm — No Comments
As we ended Part 2, Jesus was indicated that understanding does not come from the brain and must be accessed through a higher form of awareness. To reach that point, Jesus said, “If you do not fast from the world, you will not find God’s kingdom.”
How do we “fast from the world?” Nearly everything we think we “know” about ourselves has come from the world outside us. We have been conditioned to believe we are a body directed by a thinking brain. But even the personality is a…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 14, 2011 at 12:54pm — No Comments
Part 2 continues our discussion of the differences in the way Jesus is presented by the New Testament and the Gospel of Thomas, and what that means for us.
Although the New Testament is focused on identifying Jesus as the messiah, in Thomas, the term is not used. In one instance Jesus calls himself “son of man.” In the New Testament this term is often capitalized and used to designate a special position, but it’s actually a term that can be translated “child of humanity”…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on April 12, 2011 at 12:32pm — No Comments
We all want to feel comfortable, and when we don’t, we would like to be comforted and consoled. But have you ever thought that consolation might be more of a hindrance than a help? What’s really behind our desire for consolation? In his book, Three Seconds; The Power of Thinking Twice, author Les Parrott III, Ph.D. ties our desire for comfort to our first impulse to keep the comfortable status quo. Although the book is mainly directed toward success in business, the principles Parrott…Continue
Added by Lee and Steven Hager on March 29, 2011 at 3:46pm — No Comments
In the gnostic Gospel of Thomas Jesus said, “I am not your master … He who will drink from my mouth will become like me. I myself shall become he, and the things that are hidden will be revealed to him.” Jesus didn’t set himself apart from his companions and he held nothing back. In The Apocryphon of James, Jesus encouraged his followers to “Become better than I.” and In the Secret Book of James Jesus emphasized that point when he told his followers, “Be eager to be…Continue