2008.05.19 07:00 - Nisargadatta

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    Pema was the Guardian for this session, the comments are his.

    Soon after I sat down in the tea house, I saw Sky approaching.

    Pema Pera: Come in Sky!
    Pema Pera: Good seeing you again
    Sky Szimmer: Hi Pema. Good to see you too!
    Pema Pera: How’s life?
    Sky Szimmer: Technical question. How do I text without having the local chat box opened?
    Sky Szimmer: when i minimize it, then I can’t seem to type anything
    Pema Pera: when you hit the return key
    Pema Pera: a one line space opens up near the bottom
    Sky Szimmer: oh. got it.
    Pema Pera: and whatever you type will appear in there
    Pema Pera: Do you prefer not having the locat chat window open?
    Sky Szimmer: sometimes.
    Pema Pera: it does take space, yes
    Sky Szimmer: life is good
    Sky Szimmer: i was reading this morning and there was an except about the difference between awareness and consciousness
    Pema Pera: what were you reading?
    Sky Szimmer: my usual. iam that
    Pema Pera: ah!
    Pema Pera: yes, Nisargadatta, great book
    Sky Szimmer: it’s been a while since i read it
    Sky Szimmer: but yes. it is a great book

    Nisargadatta’s I am That is indeed wonderful book, which I would recommend to anyone.

    Pema Pera: so he talked about the difference between awareness and consciousness?
    Sky Szimmer: yes. it reminded me of our conversation in RL, last month
    Sky Szimmer: i think I was talking about there is always going to be a connection with “Being” and the body
    Pema Pera: yes?
    Sky Szimmer: anyway, the explanation is consciousness has an “I” and in awareness not
    Pema Pera: ah, I see!
    Sky Szimmer: ‘I” being a bundle of memories and experiences, the five senses, etc.
    Pema Pera: I did not remember exactly what words Nisargadatta uses, but yes, that makes sense
    Sky Szimmer: so in death, those attribute fades
    Sky Szimmer: finer states of consciousness remains
    Sky Szimmer: awareness being not a form of consciousness
    Sky Szimmer: interesting.
    Sky Szimmer: anyway food for thought
    Pema Pera: What happens after that is not something I know anything about :-) in fact what happens while we are alive I find already a very interesting and puzzling question . . . .
    Sky Szimmer: yes.
    Sky Szimmer: no need to go there really.
    Pema Pera: I do expect that there is a lot to say about that — just something I have never gotten into.

    I asked Sky about our 9-sec practice

    Pema Pera: May I ask, how is the 9-sec practice going?
    Sky Szimmer: not
    Pema Pera: Do you find some time for it sometimes?
    Sky Szimmer: yes
    Sky Szimmer: i do it, but not dilligently.
    Pema Pera: no problem, any little bit helps
    Pema Pera: continuity is most important
    Pema Pera: what happens when you do it?
    Sky Szimmer: nothing
    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Pema Pera: like nothing nope nada ?
    Pema Pera: nothing at all?
    Sky Szimmer: no
    Pema Pera: that is hard to imagine . . . I presume at least something happens? You are still breathing for example?
    Sky Szimmer: nothing in the sense that there is no “difference” from my normal way of interacting with the world but there are subtle changes to my perception or point of view of the world
    Pema Pera: ah, something! — sorry to be teasing you, Sky, I hope you don’t mind (^_^)
    Sky Szimmer: nope. not at all
    Pema Pera: but you are so teasable sometimes (^^)
    Sky Szimmer: i need to be teased!
    Pema Pera: being so adament that nothing is happening and that you don’t get it - haha
    Sky Szimmer: relaxing and playing is a big part of this

    After teasing Sky a bit, I became more serious.

    Pema Pera: do you know yourself why you fall into that habit?
    Sky Szimmer: i get too serious
    Sky Szimmer: stim is always telling me, relax!
    Sky Szimmer: it is the self judging part of me that is over active
    Sky Szimmer: bad habit
    Pema Pera: does that make it simpler for you, to imagine that you don’t get it?
    Sky Szimmer: ??
    Sky Szimmer: simpler in what way
    Pema Pera: There must be a reason for you to fall into the habit of denying that something happens, denying that you “get” it . . . perhaps that makes life simpler? Just guessing . . . . a way to go back to scratch, back to start?
    Sky Szimmer: no. i think i am a hard self critic
    Sky Szimmer: bad habit
    Sky Szimmer: : )
    Sky Szimmer: but really,
    Sky Szimmer: I am looking for freedom a
    Pema Pera: saying “bad habit” is a judgment, and that in itself doesn’t necessarily help — it may be more useful to observe the habit without judging it to see where it is coming from
    Sky Szimmer: and when I am not content with the ongoings of my life or when I get really agitated and lose view, then I know that I have gotten lost

    Thorberg joined us.

    Thorberg Nordlicht: hello
    Sky Szimmer: so my expectation is to be fully content, always
    Sky Szimmer: 1
    Sky Szimmer: hi there Thor
    Pema Pera: and then it is easier to say “totally lost” than “a little lost”, right?
    Pema Pera: simplifying life that way
    Pema Pera: by denying that you saw anything? — again, just guessing.
    Pema Pera: Hi Thor!
    Thorberg Nordlicht: mind if i join you?
    Pema Pera: Of course, what a question :>)
    Pema Pera: I am needling Sky
    Pema Pera: since she is again charmingly denying any insight hehehe
    Pema Pera: sorry, Sky
    Sky Szimmer: : )
    Pema Pera: I really hope you don’t mind me teasing you
    Thorberg Nordlicht: ((needling Sky)) should I side with her to level the playing field? (not that she can’t hold her own)
    Sky Szimmer: no… Pema!
    Sky Szimmer: Yes!!!! Thor!
    Sky Szimmer: Haha
    Pema Pera: Thor, Sky and I know each other for years, in RL as well, so I am taking some liberty here (^_^)
    Thorberg Nordlicht: Well, Pema, I agree with sky (what were you talking about?)
    Pema Pera: ah, so you too deny that you have gotten any insight at all?
    Pema Pera: hehehe
    Sky Szimmer: Oh, Pema is just pointing out about my self judging that I am not “getting it”
    Pema Pera: in fact, that could be a very wise statement
    Sky Szimmer: no insight
    Thorberg Nordlicht: hmmm, first thing in the morning and i’ve alrady painted myself into a corner
    Sky Szimmer: haha
    Thorberg Nordlicht: it’s not going to be a good day
    Thorberg Nordlicht: ok, how ‘ bout I just listen
    Thorberg Nordlicht: and stay out of trouble

    I just love the way we interact here, like siblings in a family :-).

    Pema Pera: but the way Sky is using it, I suspect is more like this: when you don’t get as much insight as you had hoped for it is difficult to settle for less and easier to deny that you have any insight at all — that sort of clears the room . . . . but I’m not sure, Sky, what do you think?
    Thorberg Nordlicht: ((thinking: just listening; better to stay silent and be thought a fool, etc.))
    Sky Szimmer: well. I just want to live happily. bottom line
    Sky Szimmer: oh Thor!
    Pema Pera: so why not start now, Sky?
    Pema Pera: right here
    Pema Pera: right now
    Pema Pera: what is holding you back?
    Sky Szimmer: yes :
    Sky Szimmer: nothing.
    Pema Pera: so?
    Pema Pera: let’s take that as a base then
    Pema Pera: agreed, right?
    Sky Szimmer: there are bumps along the way
    Sky Szimmer: but in the moment, at this moment, it is a happy moment
    Sky Szimmer: there may be just happy moments and each now is happiness
    Pema Pera: so how about enjoying the bumps, too?
    Pema Pera: why not?
    Sky Szimmer: but then there are moment that are bumps which for me reveal lack of understanding
    Sky Szimmer: that is how I choose to interpret my bumps
    Pema Pera: can you give a specific example?
    Pema Pera: of such a bump?
    Sky Szimmer: my life
    Pema Pera: more specific?
    Sky Szimmer: i guess I see every moment in my life as significant
    Pema Pera: that’s wonderful!
    Sky Szimmer: so that when I have an emotional response then there is a trigger
    Sky Szimmer: usually, there is a self causing a problem
    Sky Szimmer: so for me, I have to see what I am suppose to learn
    Sky Szimmer: but I guess, there is also this underlying feeling that having “understanding” I should be in bliss, love and gratitude
    Sky Szimmer: nirvana
    Sky Szimmer: which I can’t say I have sustained
    Sky Szimmer: these are of course obstacles to have such assumptions
    Sky Szimmer: but you know… I want to be in heaven now, hehe

    I couldn’t help myself laughing with Sky, about her exposition.

    Pema Pera: hahaha
    Pema Pera: you have the largest range of ambitions of anyone I know
    Pema Pera: either want to be fully in nirvana
    Pema Pera: or conclude that you have not gotten anything at all
    Pema Pera: (^_^)
    Sky Szimmer: Is it all the same, : )
    Pema Pera: well,
    Pema Pera: do you mind if we go back for a moment to the 9-sec practice? You first said nothing happened, and then you agreed that something subtle was happening — can you say a bit mroe about that, what that subtle happening is?
    Sky Szimmer: Thor…. what have you found.
    Sky Szimmer: evading question
    Thorberg Nordlicht: ((thinking: ho boy, think of something clever to say; ah! I’ve got it…)) RETURN TO THE SINGLE-MINDED EFFORT!
    Pema Pera: ((or play the ball back to Sky))
    Pema Pera: ((she can answer too!))
    Sky Szimmer: well, its a macro versus micro view
    Sky Szimmer: I guess. for me, the 9 sec helps me to step back, way back
    Pema Pera: great!
    Sky Szimmer: like the view finder here
    Sky Szimmer: how about you?
    Sky Szimmer: Pema
    Pema Pera: well, I can say a lot, and I have done that at times, about what I find in the 9-sec openings, but right now we are talking about you, Sky, and you keep evading :-)

    I decided to shift gears.

    Pema Pera: okay
    Pema Pera: let me stop teasing you
    Pema Pera: and be really serious for a minute
    Pema Pera: if you don’t mind.
    Sky Szimmer: no. i am always serious
    Sky Szimmer: : )
    Pema Pera: I think that as far as I know you, the 9 sec practice may give you a chance to escape from your habit to reach for the highest and then fall back to the lowest — letting you instead stay in the middle being content with small discoveries
    Pema Pera: Does that make any sense at all?
    Sky Szimmer: well yes and no
    Sky Szimmer: I am not always a yoyo
    Sky Szimmer: so I can’t see how that’d help
    Pema Pera: what do you think would help?
    Pema Pera: or before that, what do you think the problem is?
    Sky Szimmer: no, let’s go back. I’d like to explore what you are saying more
    Sky Szimmer: how would the 9 sec stabilize that tendency?
    Pema Pera: Yes, let’s go very slowly
    Sky Szimmer: sorry Thor!
    Pema Pera: I think that you have a deep intuition about the nature of reality, and that shows itself by your love for reading Nisargadatta — if you didn’t you would be bored by that book
    Sky Szimmer: Pema has been trying to pin me down on this point for a while : )
    Pema Pera: So that is point 1: a deep intuition.
    Thorberg Nordlicht: ok, i see
    Pema Pera: Now, surprisingly to me and Stim and others who know you is the fact that you keep repeating that you don’t get it. That is point 2.
    Thorberg Nordlicht: i’m staying out of the way, because this is obviously a continuation of an ongoing conversation between the two of you
    Thorberg Nordlicht: intersting interaction, though

    So for convenience I had numbered Sky’s great intuition 1) and hilarous denial of insight 2).

    Pema Pera: now those two points are in conflict, and my sense is that you would like to resolve that conflict in some way, is that right?
    Sky Szimmer: don’t you have this problem Thor where there is self doubt involved in your practice
    Sky Szimmer: yes Pema
    Thorberg Nordlicht: yes, i have self doubt (a lot of it actually) but i just observe that, too (just sit with thedoubt)
    Pema Pera: so in a since, point 1 is effectively a hindrance for you, so far
    Sky Szimmer: ah!
    Sky Szimmer: yes. you nailed it! I think
    Sky Szimmer: light bulb flashing on
    Pema Pera: if you did not have such a clear and far reaching intuition, it might have been much easier for you to make small steps
    Pema Pera: and each step would be satisfying
    Pema Pera: but in the radical light of Nisargadatta you can just hear him saying “this too is meaningless, throw it all away”
    Sky Szimmer: that is the problem.
    Pema Pera: and that way you can never get out of the starting blocks
    Sky Szimmer: what do you mean by that?
    Sky Szimmer: get out of the starting blocks
    Sky Szimmer: ??
    Pema Pera: each time you try to do some practice, and get some insight
    Pema Pera: you hear Nisargadatta saying that that is not the ultimate insight
    Pema Pera: so that makes you drop it all
    Pema Pera: and go back to square one
    Sky Szimmer: I know what you are saying and I think you got that
    Pema Pera: in the starting blocks
    Pema Pera: so my antidote is to do the 9 seconds practice in the following way
    Pema Pera: at the beginning, put fingers in your ears
    Pema Pera: and don’t listen to Nisargadatta
    Pema Pera: only listen to yourself
    Pema Pera: and after 9 seconds you can take your fingers out
    Pema Pera: and compare what you saw with what NIsargadatta said, if you like
    Sky Szimmer: ah!
    Pema Pera: but during those 9 seconds don’t let anybody tell you that you are not good enough ! ! ! ! ! !

    I came back to my suggestion to take lab notes during the 9 seconds explorations.

    Pema Pera: you see
    Pema Pera: this is why I suggest to make notes
    Pema Pera: laboratory notes
    Pema Pera: a good scientist writes down what happens during an experiment
    Pema Pera: independent of judgment
    Sky Szimmer: well, I think it is more like I have an intuitive understanding but then I see the moments of my life and some moments reveal lack of clarity
    Pema Pera: only describing what happens
    Sky Szimmer: then the self judging thing goes on
    Pema Pera: yes yes of course but . . . . .
    Sky Szimmer: that I don’t get it.
    Pema Pera: just DROP that all
    Sky Szimmer: then the frustration kicks in
    Pema Pera: give yourself a break
    Sky Szimmer: yes. Pema. to just Drop!
    Pema Pera: at least a 9-second break
    Pema Pera: and during those 9 seconds, or just afterward, write down something
    Pema Pera: anything
    Pema Pera: you can no longer say that nothing happened hehehehe
    Pema Pera: and seriously
    Sky Szimmer: I don’t think I hear Nisargadatta saying that that is not the ultimate insight, maybe I should do that with the intuition and then just drop everything
    Sky Szimmer: yes. Pema! I will try to write something down. I did it for 1 day
    Sky Szimmer: I could do it again
    Pema Pera: well, I suggest you do SOMETHING and stop speculating . . . . .
    Sky Szimmer: have you been doing that!
    Sky Szimmer: Thor!

    Sky and I made a deal.

    Pema Pera: sure!
    Pema Pera: sorry
    Sky Szimmer: OK Pema. I will write something. Anything.
    Pema Pera: so shall we make a deal? You wrote every day for a week, something, anything, and then we can see what difference that has made?
    Pema Pera: sorry to be so pushy :>)
    Pema Pera: I normally am not like that, as you know
    Pema Pera: but this is a special treat (^_^)
    Sky Szimmer: I like your pushy self : )
    Sky Szimmer: haha
    Pema Pera makes a sigh of relief
    Pema Pera was afraid he had gone too far (^^)
    Pema Pera: thanks, Sky!
    Sky Szimmer: really?
    Pema Pera: I appreciate it
    Pema Pera: well, I don’t like to impose my suggestions on others, normally
    Sky Szimmer: Thanks Pema. I appreciate it!!!
    Pema Pera: glad to hear that , SKy!
    Sky Szimmer: People of my culture enjoys pushiness : )
    Pema Pera: and believe me, I think I learn as much from exchanges like this as you do
    Sky Szimmer: really
    Sky Szimmer: ?
    Pema Pera: and I hope Thor does too :>)
    Pema Pera: really!
    Sky Szimmer: Thor!!!!

    It seemed that Thor had moved to another realm :-)

    Pema Pera: are you surprised, Sky, that I am learning as much?
    Sky Szimmer: of course!
    Thorberg Nordlicht: sorry, temporarily distracted
    Pema Pera: np, Thor, sorry to have left you out for a while!
    Sky Szimmer: Thor! Can you show me how to eject and rezz?
    Sky Szimmer: yes Thor. Pema was being my doctor
    Pema Pera smiles
    Thorberg Nordlicht: just out inviting Nisargadatta to join us
    Sky Szimmer: neat!
    Pema Pera: now that would be nice!
    Pema Pera: love the guy
    Pema Pera: just wonderful
    Pema Pera: so direct so straight
    Thorberg Nordlicht: so, Pema, you were saying?
    Pema Pera: all kind of things, Thor :>)
    Thorberg Nordlicht: :-)
    Sky Szimmer: Thor! Can you show me how to eject and rezz?
    Sky Szimmer: I need to figure it out.
    Pema Pera: meanwhile, I really have to go — have another astronomy meeting coming up
    Thorberg Nordlicht: not sure what you’re asking, but i’ll be glad to help; i’ll drop picutre in your inventory
    Sky Szimmer: bye Pema. Hugs!
    Thorberg Nordlicht: bye bye for now Pema!
    Pema Pera: but I am very happy with our conversation Sky, Hugs too!
    Sky Szimmer: me too!
    Pema Pera: bye Thor, bye Sky!
    Sky Szimmer: bye
    Thorberg Nordlicht: btw, Pema, I’ll stop by tomorrow (Tuesday) at 1 PM also if I’m available

    Only when I got up and turned around, did I see that Thor had rezzed a thin block with on it a nice photograph of Nisargadatta. Since he and Sky had been sitting opposite me, and picture had been behind me, I had not seen it earlier.

    Pema Pera: nice picture!
    Sky Szimmer: Thor. As guardians, we can eject people. do you know how to do that?
    Pema Pera: now I see what you meant THor, hadn’t noticed it
    Thorberg Nordlicht: yes, Nisargadatta can be right in the room with you and not even be noticed

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