Fred introduces Dr. Glenda M. Tavormina, a new teacher of The Living Method. Glenda shares about how the non-dual teaching has resonated from the beginning and the profound impact that it has had on her.
Fred: Hello, everybody. Good to be back with you. So, you may have heard that I have had spine trouble, that I’ve had a little bit of an illness. And so, I have not been with you to cut videos. Just haven’t had the stuff. And I’m not saying that I have it now, but I have somebody with me who does have it. And I want to introduce somebody to you. She’s just been made a full-blown teacher of The Living Method. What she says is a reflection of The Living Method, and you don’t have to worry about it. And what she says is going to be as true at the truth can get through a Glenda unit. And it’s like I’m not telling you the true truth, I’m telling you the best that I can through the Fred unit. So, without further ado, let me introduce Glenda Tavormina. She has been my student for the last two years, and before she says anything I’ll tell you she’s the hardest working student that I have ever had. And gee whiz, it looks like it just might have paid off. Glenda, come on in.
Glenda: Hi, Fred. Hi, everybody. So, this is amazing to be sitting here in this capacity. It’s a testimony to the message of The Living Method that has come through you, and I’m blessed to have found you so that I can be that conduit, too. From a very young age, maybe even nine years old, I wasn’t a very happy child, but somehow, I knew that even though I was sad that I was playful and fun-loving. And I had a quest for, I called it being my true self.
Glenda: So, my whole life was really underlying with a devotion to that. So, there was a lot of seeking, and I don’t know about a little under 40 years it took me to find you, Fred. Thank God.
Fred: That’s been my game.
Glenda: Thank God for miracles. But it was such a blessing to have all the intellectual supposed understanding that was lived. It prepared me, made me ready, for your message. I believe I found you by accident someplace on the internet. And I believe you spoke about what was prior to consciousness. And my ears, I said, I knew it. That’s what has been missing. They talked about everything is conscious, everything is consciousness. And I just knew that there was something prior to consciousness. So that was the beginning of the love affair with The Living Method and you, Fred.
Fred: Yeah, I understand. Because it’s really all about love. Within love there is automatic trust, and you have always trusted me and I have always trusted you. I think we can both say that we’ve never let each other down. And it’s just terrific. There’s no romance, folks, Betsy loves her, too. I just can hear (makes talking sounds).
Glenda: No, knowing true nature is a love fest.
Glenda: I feel through this body sometimes love and appreciation and gratitude for no reason at all. It just wells up so strong. It’s amazing.
Fred: Well, what we are is love and a very good expression of love is This. And we disagree with much of This a lot of the time. We don’t think This is quite right, but I assure you that it is. It always has been, and it always will be. Yeah, and what I see love as is that it is that unconditional acceptance. And it’s truly unconditional. It feels like I have unconditional love with Betsy. I can’t imagine that I don’t. I’ll just put it that way. But with my dogs I know there is no payoff in the sense that Betsy does so much good for me, how could I not love her. The dogs are financial drains, but they can do no wrong. That’s what love is really about. It is about saying you’re sorry. It’s not about the old love means never having to say sorry. But it is the willingness with which I will say I’m sorry. Because don’t think there’s any sort of august being here. There is Awakeness here, but it’s not the being, it’s the animation of both these beings.
Glenda: I feel it’s like this profound sense of humility and really discovering that there is no individual or separate self there. There aren’t words to describe. There’s just a witnessing of a supposed life being lived. And there’s experiencing, but there’s no one doing it.
Glenda: And there’s something so humbling about…I’m saying almost like miraculous majesty of what’s happening.
Fred: Yeah. This is pretty great when you stop arguing with it. I’ve been in pain for two-and-a-half years, but I don’t suffer from it. I do have pain from it. There’s a preference not to be in pain, but I don’t suffer from it because I don’t have an argument that it should be here or that it shouldn’t be happening to good ‘ole me.
Glenda: Yeah, yeah. It definitely makes a difference that it’s not my pain.
Fred: Yes, it makes a world of difference. It really does. It makes things endurable that really don’t feel like they would be.
Glenda: Yeah, because life certainly has its apparent ups and downs and challenges that it presents to supposed people.
Fred: And throughout all that there is the great okayness underlying everything, yeah?
Fred: So when we met you were actually pretty sad again. You talked about being sad as a child. You were sad when we met. You don’t seem so sad now.
Glenda: The automatic way of being would be sad, scared, worried.
Fred: Betsy and I loved you but we both said—because if you ever watch Winnie the Pooh, Betsy and I are both Tiggers, we’re very excitable and this is what Tiggers do when we bounce around—we used to say that Glenda is an Eeyore. Eeyore could find a dark cloud inside of any silver lining. But that ain’t the way it is now. So actually, you know units can benefit from Awakening. It’s not just Awakeness itself. It’s not about the units.
Glenda: Yes, that’s the most miraculous interesting thing, the unit benefits from Awakeness recognizing itself.
Fred: Yeah. Yeah.
Glenda: Yeah, but the unit has nothing to do with it, what’s happening to it.
Fred: No, it doesn’t.
Glenda: It’s not really happening to anybody anyway.
Fred: No, it’s not. It’s happening through it.
Glenda: It’s crazy. You can’t really talk about this stuff.
Fred: We love to try!
Glenda: Yeah, invariably, it’s like the wrong word is said, but I guess we do the best we can.
Fred: That’s all we ever can do and amazingly enough, our best is always good enough. My best has always been good enough for everybody but me.
Glenda: Yes, for sure. That’s a constant. Yeah, just even with this experience, you know, nothing is one or the other. There’s no doubt of what true nature is. And I don’t understand what this is, but there’s a knowing that that’s what I am, so to speak.
Glenda: But at the same time, that doesn’t stop the conditioning of Eeyore-ness.
Glenda: You know, or any conditioning that might be there.
Fred: Anything can still happen, you know, it’s just that afterwards how that’s all processed and everything, it can be a remarkable change in all of that.
Glenda: Well, you know, even if it says the same old conditioned stuff that it said before, it’s just recognized as static. I don’t know. Yeah, it’s an overlay on top of the Stillness that’s there, the peace that always is.
Fred: Yeah, the peace that always is.
Glenda: And there’s lots of noise that goes on superimposed on it a lot. Yeah, but it’s a blessing to not believe it or have to listen to it as my thoughts. There aren’t any.
Fred: So let me ask you this. When you came here, when you first came here to the teaching, did you feel like I’m home or anything like that?
Glenda: Oh, absolutely.
Glenda: Absolutely, yes, like this is, throughout the seeking as I said there was always this sense of something’s missing. It’s not that I didn’t know that, you know, teachers (and they’re very famous teachers), I knew that they knew, they recognize Truth, and they were speaking of Truth, but they weren’t able to help me (for Truth to be recognized through this unit, this body).
Fred: That’s it. Which happens to be the only unit that counts in terms of awakening.
Glenda: Yeah, so, thought, thinking was still owned and believed. But yes, when I heard you speaking of something prior to consciousness, a feeling of coming home is almost like—it was recognition and a validation of what became stronger and stronger through this unit that there is something missing that’s not being said, even the most brilliant of teachings and teachers. I really was at a point where I didn’t question that; it was just a question of the universe directing me to someone who agreed.
Fred: Yeah, right. That’s it. So, some of this teaching really has been more of a confirmation than it has been a true learning. I find that Nisargadatta is primarily confirmation for me. I’ve studied Nisargadatta very closely. I’ve listened to what he says and all that. But for a long, long time now, if I go to one of his books or something—or the same thing with Ramana or anybody else—is that I go there in search of—well, I don’t know if I go there in search of anything—but when I am in there, the result when I come out will be simply confirmation. In other words, a lot of times I will go along and there’ll be even an exact phrasing of something. It’ll be something I do and that I’ve never heard from any other teacher or anything like that. And he will say it using the same damn language. It’s just unbelievable. So, now, however, we both have community around us, don’t we?
Fred: Yeah. The Awakening Clarity Now sangha, or perhaps it’s going to end up being The Living Method sangha, I don’t know. This teaching is changing, just so everybody will know what’s coming up. And you may have noticed it already with flyers that have gone out or you’ve heard about it on the internet or something. I’m doing more and more group work, small group work, like I have a Teacher’s Training Course that is limited to eight people who have already woken up and all that—the Clearing Sessions, I think that’s limited to 12 or something like that generally speaking. I mean I may go to 14 and drop to 10, but we’ll continue to start new meetings rather than just to crowd up old ones because the whole point is, we have satsang on Sundays but these small groups, we find that they’re just completely different and they affect different people differently. They affect people positively, and it seems to be pretty immediate. Because I have lots of really dedicated students right now, and dedicated students are not that easy to find. It’s not all that easy to find people who genuinely want to wake up. Because if you would like to wake up but you just feel like I just don’t know what that would do or if you’ve got serious doubts about it, honestly my advice is to stop this if it’ll let you and then see what happens. Because if you stop your nondual search, and then you find out you can’t stop it—because I think that’s what happened with me is that I was ready to just throw in the towel on nonduality and I tried and it wouldn’t let me. It kept bringing the towel and when you come back, you come back with recognition that you’re powerless, which is what happened to me with Alcoholics Anonymous. I gave it a shot and it didn’t work and I gave it another shot and it didn’t work but when I came back I was in full recognition of the fact that I can’t quit drinking on my own. And waking up on your own is very difficult, too. People do it. We could say that I did it, but because there’s no one to really point to but I was up to here (lifts hands to neck) in nondual teaching. Glenda, there was a great deal of wakefulness there when we met. So, it was really a matter of pushing that pea off the edge of the cliff and letting it drop.
Glenda: Yeah. He was speaking about satsang or the group clearing sessions or even that sense of you being, feeling like home.
Glenda: It’s when hearing truth spoken does this resonance and this feeling of “Yes, yes,” you know. And sometimes the same words you’re saying are the same words that are supposedly floating through my head, that are floating in the spaciousness. No one there, but I love that word you use, it’s not a word, it’s the grocking.
Fred: Yeah, yeah, right, the grocking. It may even be in the dictionary. I heard that it was a couple of years ago. I don’t know.
Glenda: I don’t know, you have to look it up. But it’s cool. Grocking—getting something, but no one’s getting it. It’s just gotten by nobody.
Fred: Yeah, and you know we do grock things. This is where there are things in life that no one really has to teach you, you just get, right? Somebody teaches you the mechanics of driving a car, and you can drive the car and you’re terrified because you’re wondering if you’ve got the right foot on the right pedal or whatever, and then comes a day when you just get in and wow. It’s like you don’t even notice that you’re looking both ways, you’re stopping at stop signs, and you’re going the speed limit, and you’re watching out for pedestrians and all of that. You just do it, and you’re in that flow then. And life has a certain flow to it. It’s not always even and it’s not always pleasant but there is a sort of flow and what I discovered years ago was that I had spent my entire life trying to go against the flow. It’s very painful; I don’t advise it. Glenda had a very successful life when she was a dentist and she had been—and we had decided that I wouldn’t tell that but I just can’t not—because I want to have the comparison. So, in other words she went through her life doing a lot of the right things but it didn’t bring her happiness.
Fred: And I’d went through life doing a lot of—they were completely opposite—but I was doing a lot of things that I thought would make me happy and I didn’t find it there either. And both of us met at the end of the road so to speak, and we found this teaching at the earliest available moment—and you’ll find it’s your earliest available moment I think, right? You don’t have to worry about anything that’s come before.
Glenda: You know, I had definitely reached the point where I stopped seeking. You know, the whole thing it started out with listening to a spiritual teacher who I had been following for a while. Now, it’s interesting. We have to use regular language, so now looking back I could see of course he would refer to “we” and “me” but at the time I suppose like true nature was just hearing it as a contradiction or a hypocrisy. And my mind just went, no, there’s no me. There’s no “we.” And I felt it so passionately. And of course, I didn’t know how to live it.
Glenda: I didn’t know how to be the nothingness that is, that I always was. And then I did one last try to do that, and it didn’t work. And it was just a few months I think, a few months after that, I was kind of floating for a little bit and then I found you. And it was just perfect, and I was really ready.
Fred: Sometimes I’ll come out of an Awakening session, I had my teaching students in one of the teaching classes, they watched an Awakening session where a woman fully cooperated, she never fought me, she never did anything, it’s like she read the script and she knew her part, too, and just went…
Glenda: Textbook, right, Fred?
Fred: That’s it: textbook. And really, you were always that way, because you knew. I don’t know exactly what this is, but I do know I want it.
Glenda: And I also know that I’m certainly not going to trust myself more than I trust you. It was very clear wisdom and Truth was coming through that mouth.
Glenda: So, no matter how “yeah, but” or right the thought might have thought it was, it was just—I was very open to experiencing the wrongness of that and seeing the truth of what was being spoken. And it takes a lot of repetition and a lot of earnest focusing for truth to keep being unveiled. That’s one of my biggest joys about truth, being that I know it’s infinite. There’s infinite opportunity for the recognition of what is always here. I still can’t believe, it always feels like, oh you can’t know it more than you know it, you can’t see it more than you see it now. And I’m so blessed and grateful that you know, it’s not that it wasn’t gotten before or recognized, but it cuts deeper and deeper with exposure to truth, listening to truth, mostly standing as it.
Fred: Yes, that’s it.
Glenda: That I think looking back, you could see it. The conditioning resists, the conditioning does resist seeing it. It’s just somehow the program is there not to get it and that’s kind of what we’re up against, right? But at some point with that repetition, truth is recognized. You know I think it’s amazing that people have expectations of things being one and done. You know, in this teaching it’s very obvious there is no one, and there’s no one and done. Like every second is an opportunity to recognize truth or to get sucked into belief. But it is the stand of what is really here that safeguards so to speak the seeing. But there’s no guarantee.
Fred: I think that it might do people good to recognize that both Glenda and I have active egos, but we don’t put any stock in them. We don’t believe what they’re doing, but it doesn’t mean that this unit can’t still actively engage in—or that one—in egoic behaviors. There’s this built-in conditioning that has been there in part or in whole for thousands of years. You don’t break through that in a minute. You recognize yourself as oneness. That’s really very good, but you recognized yourself as a Fred or a Glenda for decades.
Fred: So, you don’t just shut that off, but it’s no longer what I would consider to be unhealthy.
Glenda: It’s a question of, like you say, repetition—how many years of repetition of believing I’m a Glenda?
Fred: Yeah, right.
Glenda: It’s many more years than standing as truth.
Fred: It is, but we’re very lucky because we get what—you know, if we’re really in this to wake up and become a servant, right? That’s what we’re really trying to wake up to is becoming a servant not the star.
Fred: And if you’re willing to do this, then what you’ll find is that you’ll get enough of what you’re after all along, right? There’s fundamental change that takes place in our students pretty early, right?
Glenda: More, more than what’s expected.
Fred: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Glenda: Beyond. Beyond imagination.
Glenda: Me being here, you blessing me with the authority of teaching The Living Method, this was not sought after nor expected.
Fred: No, I didn’t expect it, neither did you.
Glenda: No, it’s really amazing.
Fred: But you did know that you wanted what was here.
Fred: You wanted all of it.
Glenda: Clarity. As much—to recognize and be the clarity that I am as much as possible.
Fred: Yeah. Meeting once a month was never enough for Glenda and if I couldn’t tell you what happened in the last one of our meetings or the last satsang, Glenda could tell you, because she took notes, she reviewed things, she did everything that I used to tell Betsy, you know, is that a lot of people want what I have but not many people want to do what I did. And that remains true, but you can do some of what I did and get a lot. But Glenda, a lot was not interesting to Glenda. Glenda wanted, she wanted it all. And neither one of us have it all. That’s the beautiful thing.
Glenda: That’s great.
Fred: Congratulations. So, we’re still students, but it’s no longer a struggle.
Glenda: Yes, yes, it’s a joy.
Fred: We’re at about a half an hour. And I think that’s about as long as we can ask anyone to lend us their attention.
Glenda: Sounds good.
Fred: So, let’s bid them health and wellness and joy.
Fred: We’ll see you again.
Glenda: Thank you.
Fred: Bye bye.