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Started by Rod

The Creation of Worlds & the Observer Effect

After finishing a chapter called “The Creation of Worlds” in The Flower Ornament Sutra, (one of my favorite texts to interpret from a quantum/neuroscience perspective) I began to ponder different levels of meaning. Taken literally the text implies that through meditation, good thoughts, worlds and universes come into being and are maintained. At first this seems like a fantastic idea, especially to our rational left hemisphere way of thinking. On a psychological level we create our world based on our thoughts. As the Sufi mystic Inayat Khan said “with every thought we create heaven or hell”. As we view ourselves and life more positively, we begin to create a more meaningful life. This is the basis of much of positive and cognitive psychology. In various mystical traditions it is said that there are a number of masters on the planet at any given time that due to their meditations and energetic fields, our world is maintained. When we consider the observer effect from quantum physics, our observation does indeed create different outcomes or world’s (as in the example of Schrodinger’s cat). So on a quantum level our thoughts, our actions, through the observer effect, may indeed create worlds on a subtler and more profound level than we know. One of the most interesting examples from my life is when I have been stuck with a particular client and have taken this issue to consultation. As I resolve the issue inside me, I often find when I show up for the next session the issue has been resolved with and in the client also!

Jim:I do know that I can alter the

1 comment

Started by Ann Marie

I Am the Universe

I am the journey
I am that which is searching
and searching to see itself.
I am that illusion of
the existence of
the world

that illusion
of there being anyone here
other than me.

I am the illusion of someone
walking towards me
lying beside me
sitting next to me
caressing me
yelling at me in traffic.
I am the traffic
all of it.

There is that strange man
in that land
strange to me
on the other side of the world
and when there is a tear
on his face.

I am that tear
and every molecule of water in those tears
with its cloud of wandering electrons.
I am the wetness
and the saltiness
that he feels on his cheek.
I am the heaviness in his heart.

I am his heart
I am what is left
when his heart is done
and I am that spark
that still resides in some other place.

I am the love
that I have been seeking
or waiting for
when I am not seeking.

I am the object
of my own
furious mad agony
of jealousy
for my own self
as I am the love
that holds the spirit together
as the world

and I am everything
that happened after that.

I am everything
that has ever happened
so that I can pretend
that we just met
in the illusion
that I now call yesterday
or last month
or this morning
so that I can be the love
of our lives
of my life

so that I can be the love
appearing to appear
out of an ocean
of seven billion separate faces.

I am the love
that is the flower’s fragrance
that I bring to myself
when I am that illusion
pretending to be
some other one
that has just brought me flowers.

I am this sweetness
that I am inhaling.

I am
after the flowers have crumbled dry
the illusion that there is
another love
out there to find.

I am that, too

so that I can now be
the same love that embraced me
as when we first embraced
one another

and I am the love
that now embraces me
as we embrace each other
one last time
as I am the illusion
that the embrace has ended.

I am the object of my own desire
that I have been longing for
all along.

I am and have been
the object of my own desire
from the start
of the illusion
all along.
I am the illusion
that there was an all along
all along.

I am both
you and I
as that reflection of myself
that I fell in love with

as I have been
the universe
as I have been the journey
as I have been the foot
and the stone in the road
as I have been the road

as I have been the
all along
and the absence
of an all along
as I have been the road
and the illusion of the road

as I am
as I have always been
as I am
the universe.

Joy Beyond Mind:Well written. Thank you.

John Sharman:Lovely poem, Ann Marie. I am


Started by Buddha Science

Chaos, Complexity, and the Shape of Reality

The spiritual path tells us that there is something more than the group of unrelated physical things that our senses seem to detect. Science tells us that not only are our senses limited in their ability to detect all tastes, colors, energies and other aspects of the physical world, but the pre-processing that occurs in our brains delivers only a limited mash-up of this sensory input to our conscious mind. So not only do we experience only a projection of the physical reality around us, but this projection has been cut and spliced like a Hollywood film with hundreds of takes for every scene. So four thousand hours of footage go into make the 90 minute movie that we experience. And each of us experiences only a miniscule fraction of the events happening in Reality. Yet science and spirituality share the same goal – to try and understand the shape of Reality.
By shape, of course, I mean that the goal is to somehow understand the larger Reality and our place in it. The scientific path is one of making empirical observations, forming concepts around those observations and then testing those observations in various ways. The spiritual path also begins with empirical observations, but then tries to eliminate concepts in order to experience Reality more directly. But each one provides only the film produced by the particular scenes it shoots and the editing methods it uses. Reality must be hidden within the common scenes that emerge from both of the films, as well as the films from every other approach that seek to understand Reality.
One of those approaches is chaos theory, which has been described in the scientific literature since as early as the 1860’s and is currently considered a special type of behavior that contributes to the behavior of complex systems. Basically, chaos shows us that simple deterministic systems with a feedback mechanism can exhibit complex and unpredictable behavior. The larger study of complex systems seeks to understand the functioning of whole systems that have many component parts. This leads to the idea of emergence. An emergent behavior is the behavior of a system that does not occur in any of the individual parts of the system, and is more than merely a behavior that results from the sum of the system’s parts. It is a rejection of reductionism – the idea that you can deconstruct a system, measure its parts and them put them back together to explain how the system functions.
This rejection of reductionism is the key. New studies are teaching us that systems reach certain thresholds of complexity and, and at that point, a completely new behavior emerges that could not have been predicted from the system’s previous behavior. The classic example is the weather, which is one of the main reasons scientists are so concerned about climate change. Although they can predict some of the potential behaviors that may occur when the climate reaches its next threshold, no one really knows exactly what the tipping point may be or what may happen one that point is reached.
So now let’s apply this principle to the ultimate complex system, that of Reality itself. We cannot ever measure all of the inputs into Reality. Even if those inputs are purely physical, if only one tiny element were missing from the equation, we could never determine what the potential behavior of the system would be. Is consciousness an emergent quality of Reality? Is the universe an emergent quality of a non-physical Reality we cannot see or measure? How can any of us see the shape of Reality when we are imbedded in the Reality we seek to understand? We can, and will, speculate on these things for as long as mankind exists, and possibly much longer than that. But it seems to me that anyone who thinks they see the whole shape of Reality not only doesn’t understand Reality, but they don’t understand emergence, either. One the other hand, it is certainly possible, through mindful meditation and lifelong contemplation of these questions, to gain a greater sense of something incomprehensible beyond the realm of the physical. It is only by looking at all the films, and respecting each of the filmmakers, that we, as a species, can move toward a more enlightened understand of the Reality we all seek.

John Sharman:What I was saying is that ther

Nemir Adjina:Dear John, why do you assume t

John Sharman:Some interesting thoughts ther

RoyDopson:Reality is that through which

Shaikh Raisuddin:There is no property as emerge


Started by John Sharman

Terminology and the Divine

Of course, “Divine” is one of the terms! Or if you prefer, there’s “God”, “Source”, “Consciousness”, “Awareness”, and “Self”, among others… I tend to alternate between all of the above, at various times. Perhaps one will sometimes speak to me more deeply than another, in its capacity as a handle on the unhandleable.

I’ve noticed that many people take issue with the name “God”, as they feel it evokes unwelcome religious connotations. I guess names evoke whatever we want them to. In the end they are all just names, of course – the Divine, the Godhead, the Great I Am, Jesus, Buddha, Allah, Whatever – all just fingers pointing at the moon. It’s only the fool who bites off his own finger in the futile attempt to grasp That which cannot be grasped.

I read a teacher once, who said it’s not really important whether I think of “God” as something outside the “self” (that I tend to think of as “me”), or whether I think of God as a pointer to That Which I Really Am. What he was getting at, I think, is that Being is profoundly and wholly mysterious, and always will be from the perspective of the mind, and that no name or term or concept about any aspect of Being can even come close to capturing it.

Of the utter folly of talking about the Divine as if one knows what one’s talking about, I don’t think I could do better than John Godfrey Saxe:

“So oft in theologic wars, / The disputants, I wean, / Rail on in utter ignorance / Of what each other mean, / And prate about an Elephant / not one of them has seen!” … here’s a link to the whole poem, spoken:

Here’s to the Elephant!


Started by dberg


Started by Anna

Thoughts on getting present versus accessing Presence!

Just when the phrase ‘getting present’ has become so popular, it no longer seems to makes sense! It is true that once upon a time, in the first stages of my exploring meditation several decades ago, I was driven to discover that one moment of stillness accompanied by a feeling of ‘all is well.’ This striving for still and quiet mind however, no longer jives with my “now’ experience. If we take eastern philosophy, the context from which so many of these ‘getting present’ techniques come from, and understand the original concept of mind, we might propose this giant request in a slightly different way.

I don’t know about your mind, but the activity of ‘mine’ is sometimes quick, slow, spacious, cluttered, and definitely self-employed, that is, for the most part on automatic. And yet, with practice I have noticed that this mind can both be narrowly focused on a task or object and allowed to relax into a wide focus, independently and simultaneously. As wide focus, the mind seemingly dissolves into a field of awareness, becoming awareness itself, yielding a sense of presence. It is in this non-focused state that presence is literally discovered within as an already existing background for the gathering activity of mind itself. Both are here.

Presence is simply not something we can get nor is it something we can do. The active mind can be monitored so that larger gaps between thoughts can be appreciated thereby creating a capacity for mindfulness. But, the mind itself is not designed to be present! I do think that what we are suggesting is that I, the mind, am slowing down. Fair enough. But accessing what already is, was, and has been seems to be the nature of the real quest. So, if presence cannot be known by the mind monitoring itself, how is it found? From the neck down!

In more than twenty years of teaching Hatha Yoga I have marveled at a particular phenomenon. For the duration of a class and all the way through shavasana, the final resting pose at the end of each practice, attention is moved throughout the body. For example, I guide students to access the inner eye of awareness to observe particular alignment cues, parts and areas of the body, certainly the breath and the movement of the body in response to breathing with an impersonal bias. Some of these cues are more subtle than others. The more subtle the cue, the more refined and obvious the awareness needs to be. And yet, by the time a student has driven half way home after class has ended, their attention has dutifully landed back up in the head in their usual location of their sense of “I.”

What to do! I have noted that even powerful suggestions such as “take up residence in your body,” or “rest in the inner territory of your Being” lack lasting effects. So, I began guiding students to narrowly focus their minds attention in the space of the body, around these internal cues, and to remain there in relaxed focus, a practice in and of itself. Gently nudging them, I suggest “As relaxed awareness allow sensations, feelings or thoughts to rise and fall like a dandelion puff in a slow, gentle wind.” In Yoga philosophy thoughts, feelings, and sensations are all made of mind stuff, or Chitta. They arise and slip away, temporarily present, moving and changing. That is the nature of mind. And mind is everywhere! Imagine each of your eight billion cells with one teeny, tiny open eye, the open eyes of wide focus awareness! Now, imagine instead that when mind is focused these billions of cells now have squinting eyes, perhaps creating tension from the tendency to create so much one pointed focus. So the relief of wide focus seems to allow for a spacious Beingness to emerge throughout the body with its immediate gift of – Presence. Just like meditation, it is not completely found in the mantra, the sound upon which mind is focused, but in the gap between the repetitions and after the mantra is dropped.

We can then play with resting as this wide focus allowing the events that usually draw mind into a narrow focus to simply float in and out of awareness; without preference. And the more that mind is awakened in the areas of the body without interference, the more the gifts of these parts or areas of the body are potentially revealed. For example, as the emotional heart area becomes a resting place for awareness, the more the heart will open and relinquish stories that carry hidden feelings of anger or grief. In the deep belly, in order for the mind to rest open and awake, the tricksters of fear, guilt, and shame must be allowed to heal and to transform into their higher frequency counterparts called trust, joy, and connection.

In addition, I have a theory, just a theory, that the body and its cells, love to be seen. Just like anyone or anything else, when they are acknowledged or seen, they tend to come alive. When attention is guided onto or into a part of the body, the body awakens; it is lit by the light of awareness. The more we practice resting mind in the space of the awakened body, the more Presence emerging is experienced. When anchored in the direct experience of our Self as Presence, then mind can mind, emotions can stir, and sensations can come and go without being catapulted into the seeking minds habit of defining that ripple of mind stuff. It can all just be seen and Beingness can preside. Presiding Presence abides as the refuge that we are.

And I also see that as presence prevails, the students sense of identity begins to shift from the mind created “I” handily created moment by moment to a way of being in the world that has less and less personal bias and more and more universality. Perhaps that sounds like there is no “I” getting present, no me doing the observing, but a new subject is discovered that reveals the depth and width of the vastness of presence itself with universal qualities such as acceptance, allowing, and even tenderness.

Perhaps then we can use our practice to yoke our identities into a unitive experience in which we are our own refuge. And, I hope we can slowly get our clarity in communicating these states as they become more and more inherent to our way of being in these big, vast, beautiful inner and outer worlds.

John Sharman:For me Dan, following thoughts

tomasz kopec:Hi Anna, I like so much your

Dan Kilpatrick:Thank you Roy. I am not sure w

Dan Kilpatrick:Hi Roy, I wanted to chime in

Bill Cole:The koan of koans is What was

RoyDopson:I feel it is of utmost importa

John Sharman:Paradox is part and parcel of

RoyDopson:Paradox is an illusion project

John Sharman:Raising questions and analyzin

RoyDopson:"This immediately raises the q

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