Hello, everybody! Since they’re coming out in such rapid succession, and I didn’t send out a flier on the video post, “Straight Talk about Enlightenment,” I’m going to update and/or repeat some of the introductory material from that post.
What a busy few days it’s been! My Buddha at the Gas Pump (BATGAP) interview was recorded on Sunday, December 1, and is now up and running. both Rick and I had a great time doing it. It’s a two hour riot, and who knows, maybe something profound slipped in! Check it out.
Also, I received a link yesterday from Shanti Einolander at ONE: The Magazine today. The bio-article by and about me that she published in her online magazine this summer, is now hitting print in The Journey Home, Volume 2. It’s got me and my friend Scott Kiloby and a number of other well known faces in it. Check it out here: The Journey Home, Volume 2.
I’m pleased to report that an anonymous donor has put $100 into a Session Scholarship fund. You’ll recall that my friend and student Brian Hauck bought someone in India a Clarity Session not long ago. This fund will go toward the same thing: gifting sessions. If you’re interested in participating in this, please drop me a line, or a donation with a note, at Fred@AwakeningClarityNow.com.
I’ll be holding a meeting in Asheville, NC on December 15 from 3:00 to 5:00 pm. If you’re interested in finding out more information, please contact Georgette Cressend at email@example.com. It will be held at a beautiful facility, The Town & Mountain Training Center.
January 19 at 10:00 PST is the definite date and time for my first tele-satsang in San Francisco. For more information, please contact Greg Ascue at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And now to our post…
Playing the Hand We Are Dealt
Life is sort of like a weird game of poker. First we’re dealt an initial hand, but we’re never happy with what we get. Everyone’s got a better hand than we do, except for the ones who don’t, but those folks had it coming, or don’t know any better, or are somehow better equipped to suffer than we are. Whatever, they don’t really count. Thus we don’t bother to count them when we frame an opinion about our own cards.
Right from go we know that our cards suck. This much is clear. And many, many people have a better, even far better hand than we do. In fact, it looks like they may have been dealt the hands we rightfully should have gotten! Life is not fair, or just, or good, simply because it’s not tilted entirely towards us.
Because we all want what we want when we want it, the want we don’t get is quickly converted into a need. So, there it is: we don’t have what we need. This is our constant mental field. We didn’t have what we needed yesterday, we don’t have what we need today, and tomorrow—oh God, we shudder to even think of it. Deprivation and disaster are right around the corner.
Although it’s painful to project the future—our precious future—we think about it anyway, and we think about it almost all the time. We obsess. Poor us, damn it.
The core benefit of not having what we think we need—measured with our stick, of course—is that we get to develop a victim story, which becomes our most valued asset. Hurrah! I’ve seen people back directly away from enlightenment—successfully dodge the oncoming bullet of freedom–because they wouldn’t be able to hang onto their story if they accepted the invitation of realization. In such cases we already have what we want, but we enjoy making noise about needing something else to complete our story. We actually love living in the mental state of lack.
We want to safely sit out of the betting, fearful that we might lose what we have, but still, we want in some mystical Las Vegas sort of way, to have the same shot at the pot that the actual players have. Good luck with that.
More rules of the game.
We get to keep drawing new cards every time it’s our turn, but we don’t have any more direct choice in what the top card in the deck will be than we do in what card will be magically discarded from our current hand. Both actions appear to, and in a general sort of way do, just happen. If so, what choice do we have? Our moment of pregnant choice is when we first flip up our draw card, and it all boils down to this:
Will we take delivery of it? That is the question that really matters. Will we rest our attention on that next arising? Will we believe it, question it, pursue it, or pass on it?
Arisings arise. Thoughts occur. What we see when we look at them is entirely dependent upon where we’re seeing it from. If we’re looking from self-interest, our apparent choice and its consequences will be directed by it. The same is true if we’re looking from Self-interest.
Once there is a spiritual awakening, once the embers of true liberation begin to glow, we are granted the first true choice we ever get: deciding where we will view the world—our deck of arising cards—from. Our personal intent is not doing the actual dealing, but it sure is the interpreter of all that we receive.
And truth be told, our intent does, in fact, influence the top card. Once it’s seen that this is all a dream, a lot of apparent impossibilities are revealed to be ludicrous. Observing counts in a measurable way. If you don’t believe me, fine, go talk to a physicist. Let them take your head where your heart cannot yet go.
Anything can happen at any time. Period. The Universe is not bound by any limitation we might try to put on it.
Our current experiencing is always composed of trace elements found in the five cards we have deemed the most important over the course of the hand. The ones we have devoted our time and attention to eventually become what the other players see turned up on the table. We are the fruit of our own tree—directly related, but in no way limited to the roots which initially bore us.
We do not get a direct vote in life. Nonetheless, these units develop a cumulative momentum that is overwhelmingly powerful. It will knock down anything in its way. This is why it is said that the most important quality in a spiritual journey is earnestness, or intention. It’s not just about the power of persistence: our attention actually influences the direction of the journey itself.
The world rises to meet whoever we are—be that mortal man or Eternal Awareness. Ultimately our current experiencing reflects the Divine Attention as it has been affirmed and influenced by and through our human attention and intentions. This is actually beyond cause and effect; it’s more subtle than that, and far more spontaneously alive. At the higher levels of spirituality, cause and effect are synonyms.
These units and their experiencing of the world are like living memorials to our past attention. Daily we sculpt our own monuments with the thoughts we allow to lead us. Our “common, ordinary, everyday” attention is more important than most of us can bear to know. These units and their worlds are constantly changing as we draw, retain, reject, or embrace the card deck’s latest offering, which is always this arising, in this moment, at this time, in this place.
As ever, the bottom line is, are we willing to be awake right now? That lazy, retirement brand of enlightenment you’ve been looking and waiting for? Good luck with that.
Fred Davis 12.3.2013