2008.08.01 19:00 - Short-Circuiting

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    That Evening, when I arrived at the pavilion, a veritable crowd was already gathered at 7 pm: Adelene, Avastu, Bertrum, Doug, Starseed. With me entering we had half a dozen avatars sitting in a circle.


    Pema Pera: Hi everybody!
    Starseed Xue: Hello
    doug Sosa: hi.
    Bertrum Quan: hi pema, doug
    Starseed Xue: sorry if im a little distracted tongiht
    Avastu Maruti: hello my friend
    Adelene Dawner: 'lo all - crowded today ^.^
    Pema Pera: Does anybody want to bring up something?
    Pema Pera: I've enjoyed reading the chat logs of the sessions I didn't attend, the last week, and I found them very interesting
    Pema Pera: pretty amazing, all the ground that is being covered here in just one week!
    doug Sosa: the 9 sec is terrific. even in describing it to someone they get it, oh not all the way, but with some real clarity and gratitude and interest.
    Pema Pera: yes, I keep being suprised how quickly that virus "jumps" :)
    Bertrum Quan: I wondered if we could discuss Death and Being in this group...
    Pema Pera: sure!
    doug Sosa: remind us how ti got to be 9 instad of 7 or 12?
    Pema Pera: 900 seconds in a quarter of an hour
    Pema Pera: 1% time tax
    Pema Pera: like a joke
    doug Sosa: a good one.
    Pema Pera: we started on April Foolsday, after all.
    Pema Pera: Bert, go right ahead!
    Pema Pera: What about death?
    doug Sosa: and being
    Bertrum Quan: We began a discussion of this subject in a small group. It seem to me that life itself is the most innate attachment. I wondered what others think.
    stevenaia Michinaga: isn;t death not Being?
    stevenaia Michinaga: unless you include memories of you within other people your Being
    stevenaia Michinaga: then death is not an end to your being
    Bertrum Quan: Pema, would you agree with that view?
    stevenaia Michinaga: Just a first impression on my part
    Pema Pera: well
    Pema Pera: it is very hard to agree with a very general statement
    Pema Pera: can you say more about "that view"?
    stevenaia Michinaga: scratching head.... I'm not sure
    stevenaia Michinaga: listens for another perspective

    For a while nobody spoke, so I then responded to Bertrum's question.

    Pema Pera: I either have to respond on a relative or on an absolute level
    Pema Pera: from an absolute level, there is no death
    Pema Pera: very easy :)
    Pema Pera: from a relative level, there are various responses
    Pema Pera: the most radical is to realize that there is only an eternal now
    Pema Pera: so no death either
    Pema Pera: although a bit different from the absolute point of view
    stevenaia Michinaga: no death, not life, Peme?
    stevenaia Michinaga: no life
    Pema Pera: but from the everyday relative point of view, sure, there is death, and we cannot deny it
    Pema Pera: we have to accept it and integrate it in our lives
    Starseed Xue: if now is forever, why cant we remember anything before birth
    Pema Pera: life and death go together
    Pema Pera: two sides of a coin, in everyday life
    Pema Pera: previous lives, that is a topic I am happy to leave for others :)
    stevenaia Michinaga: sure, leave the easy stuff to others
    Pema Pera: :)
    Pema Pera: doesn't seem the most urgent, at least not for me
    Pema Pera: although certainly interesting!
    Pema Pera: but Bert, you must have a reason to bring up death
    Starseed Xue: why cant we remember where we came from?
    Pema Pera: is there something you're struggling with?
    Pema Pera: something you're looking for?
    doug Sosa: let's see if this works, a poem i wrote for a friend's son's death. will it format?

    Doug recited his poem:

    We who living die
    We do not get death correct
    It is not to those who go direct
    But to us who remain
    To feel the pain
    Of the other’s oblivion
    ‘That reduces us to nothing
    Crushes our ego
    Dwarfs the body and its skills
    Occludes from us the distant hills
    The joy of refreshing
    Trapped as we are in narrow regressing
    Bathed in tears,
    still advancing in years.
    Death is a fact for the living left behind
    Not those to whom it was rather kind
    The sadness at their disrupted projects
    Ts ours, not theirs. Yet death
    we like to think, is unfairly blind.

    Since the poem appeared almost in an instant, a few other messages that were underway showed up quickly after the poem.

    Starseed Xue: i guess there are no answers to my questions
    Bertrum Quan: Yes. In these visualization exercises---Seeing Being Being Seeing--I have come to see Being in nano glimpes as NOTHING and EVERYTHING
    Pema Pera: I don't know answers to your questions, Starseed :)
    Pema Pera: yes, Bert, Being is beyond both, so equally both as well, you could say
    Bertrum Quan: I am attempting to visualize the individual in the EVERYTHING part...
    Pema Pera: Thanks for sharing your poem, Doug!
    Pema Pera: Having a child die must be so hard to live with . . . . .
    doug Sosa: he was devastated but let it become his, the father's, defining identity.
    Pema Pera: Bert, perhaps "all" is more accurate than "everything", from the point of view of Being, for which there are no "things" hence no "everything"
    Pema Pera: defining as taking over everything else, Doug?
    doug Sosa: yes. no trust, no opening.
    Pema Pera: sad
    Pema Pera: but understandable
    Bertrum Quan: All... better word. How does the individual fit?
    Pema Pera: doesn't
    Pema Pera: there is no being for Being, no individual
    Pema Pera: an individual is like a drawing in the water, or in the air
    Pema Pera: this is Avastu's department
    Pema Pera: he will tell you more :)
    Bertrum Quan: When the individual dies, is ALL less by a nano fraction? Or unchanged

    This is a question that cannot be answered in the same way it is posed. The individual, too, is all of Being. And seen in that light, the individual does not die, cannot die -- cannot live either for that matter, can only Be, although there are appearances of living and dying . . . .

    Pema Pera: All is unchanged
    Pema Pera: but change and no change is very different for All than for us . . . .
    Pema Pera: so hard to answer that question correctly
    Bertrum Quan: Is all permanent?
    Pema Pera: what do you think, Bert?
    Starseed Xue: if we cant remember previous lives, is it safe to assume we'll forget this one?
    Bertrum Quan: Well, the teaching that resonates for me is that impermanence is the natural order..
    Pema Pera: there are so many assumptions in that sentence, Starseed . . . it would take a long time to discuss those one by one . . . .what is the "danger", who is remembering, and so on
    Pema Pera: oh, yes, Bert, very important teaching on the relative level
    Pema Pera: but irrelevant on the absolute level
    Pema Pera: Being only makes sense on the absolute level
    Pema Pera: there is no Being on the relative level, the concept doesn't make sense at all
    Pema Pera: there is no projector anywhere in the movie story
    Bertrum Quan: I guess that's where I have difficulty,,, Being makes sense to me on the relative level...

    Sky dropped by.

    Pema Pera: Hi Sky!
    Bertrum Quan: Hi Sky
    Sky Szimmer: hey all
    Avastu Maruti: hello again my friend
    Pema Pera: Can you say more, Bertrum?
    Starseed Xue: hello sky
    Pema Pera: Being is such a tricky concept
    Pema Pera: it will take three years for us to reach a real common understanding I think
    Pema Pera: but that will be a fascinating three years!
    Pema Pera: to come closer, experientially
    Pema Pera: while using words like tourist tokens
    Pema Pera: little memorabilia of where we have traveled and are traveling
    Pema Pera: so we'll start out with very different understandings of Being
    Pema Pera: and in our experience we will all let Being speak
    Pema Pera: and we will help each other to listen
    Pema Pera: and slowly we'll converge
    Pema Pera: since there is only one Being
    Pema Pera: but sorry to talk so much -- Bert, what is Being for you?
    Bertrum Quan: All = Being
    Pema Pera: yes, and how does All fit into the relative picture?
    stevenaia Michinaga: ...wonders if being wears a black shirt
    Pema Pera: hehe
    Pema Pera: you feel a bit light, right?
    Bertrum Quan: ALL = IMPERMANENCE
    Pema Pera: yes, and how is that experientially for you?
    Sky Szimmer: i was wondering if Being is the unborn
    Pema Pera: what experience do the words point to?
    Pema Pera: Being is beyond birth and death, in that sense unborn yes, but not as a characteristic like "unborn is a characteristic of Being" -- Being has no characteristics
    Pema Pera: Hi Tahuti!
    Pema Pera: come join us
    Sky Szimmer: i guess unborn in that it will never be born
    Tahuti Thor: hello :)
    Pema Pera: have you been here before Tahuti?
    Tahuti Thor: no

    This was Tahuti's first appearance, but it would not be his last :-).

    Pema Pera: we get together here four times a day
    Pema Pera: http://playasbeing.wordpress.com/ is our blog
    Pema Pera: we talk about the nature of reality
    Tahuti Thor: k
    Pema Pera: and everybody is welcome to join in, any time
    Pema Pera: we do record our conversations for the blog
    Pema Pera: which I just mentioned
    Tahuti Thor: ok
    Pema Pera: do you mind having your name appear there?
    Pema Pera: with the rest of us?
    Tahuti Thor: no, not at all
    Pema Pera: thanks!
    Pema Pera: Bert and Sky, it would be great to make a connection with experience
    Pema Pera: we can use very many statements
    Pema Pera: this is what it is
    Pema Pera: but unless we connect, and SEE
    Pema Pera: it is not clear how those statements can help us
    Pema Pera: Bert, can you say something about yoru experience of Being
    Pema Pera: with Being
    Sky Szimmer: i guess if i say it enough then i will somehow get myself to see it
    Pema Pera: Being with you
    Pema Pera: in any way, whatsoever it occurs to you?
    Pema Pera: yes, Sky, that is a possible approach
    Pema Pera: like in a koan
    Pema Pera: but then it is very important to focus
    Pema Pera: to burn a hole so to speak
    Pema Pera: like Avastu's "Am"
    Bertrum Quan: Being in one glimpse is unending darkness... as an image... until you get closer
    Pema Pera: ah, that is nice!
    Bertrum Quan: then it is filled with flashes of light, particles...
    Pema Pera: that's a great start
    stevenaia Michinaga: So Being is ....whether we are here or even if we don't exist?
    Bertrum Quan: Close-up it is energy,,,
    Adelene Dawner: Hey - Pema - would 'reality' work as another word for 'Being'?

    Many threads; I first responded to Steve.

    Pema Pera: well, the first point is to work with the notion, as Bert just reported, and as Adams keeps reporting
    Pema Pera: from there we can get a glimpse
    Pema Pera: and slowly we can pull ourselves out of the relative to get a little sense of the absolute
    Pema Pera: so yes, Steve, Being IS
    Pema Pera: completely independently of what we do and don't understand
    Pema Pera: a mother loves a child, independently of what the child understands
    stevenaia Michinaga: that helps
    Pema Pera: yes, Adelene
    Pema Pera: you seem to read my mind
    Adelene Dawner: ^.^
    Pema Pera: this afternoon I had a conversation with a woman in RL
    Pema Pera: who will probably join us soon
    Pema Pera: she has an av
    Pema Pera: and is very interested
    Pema Pera: sister of wife of colleague
    Pema Pera: and I used "Reality" instead of "Being"
    Pema Pera: to make it less esoteric
    Pema Pera: so yes!
    Adelene Dawner: And now you're reading my mind, with the part about it being less esoteric.
    Pema Pera: Bert, yes, energy is a better image that matter
    Pema Pera: or things
    Pema Pera: feels a bit closer
    stevenaia Michinaga: isn't reality subject to everyone;s interpretation, or is reality absuoute,
    Pema Pera: we have to start with feeling tones
    Pema Pera: like Adams is doing so persistently
    Pema Pera: lol, Adelene!
    Adelene Dawner: ^.^
    Pema Pera: that's what we get for exchanging long emails . . . .
    Pema Pera: there is reality and Reality, Steve
    Pema Pera: relative and absolute
    Bertrum Quan: When I glimse Being, there are no feelings...

    I did not get a chance to respond to Bert's remarks. If there had been another opening, I would have pointed out that feelings are part of the whole relative realm and as such as part of Being. True, there are no specific feelings that come with Being. But glimpses of Being can have many side effects, ranging from utter calm to great excitement :-).


    stevenaia Michinaga: understand
    Adelene Dawner: I'd say absolute, Steve. Reality IS.
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: And what if Being glimpses you, Bert?
    Pema Pera: what then?
    Pema Pera: did you play with that?
    Tahuti Thor: i have a slight grudge against reality descriptions
    Bertrum Quan: Being glimpses me as energy--not much mind you!
    Pema Pera: yes, I can't stand talking about "reality" Tahuti, in relative terms -- it just doesn't make sense
    Pema Pera: but Reality is something totally different
    Pema Pera: haha, Bert
    Pema Pera: how about Being seeing you as Being, as all of it!
    Pema Pera: maybe fun to try
    Pema Pera: you're masquerading as a small being
    Pema Pera: Being can recognize you as Being!
    Pema Pera: just try
    Pema Pera: but Being knows better
    Pema Pera: ask Being
    Pema Pera: you'd be surprised
    Tahuti Thor: you can read your own mind, but to describe reality is well....might be futile
    Starseed Xue: goodnight everyone
    Bertrum Quan: As a cell can be cloned, energy can be a spot of Being...
    Pema Pera: goodnight Starseed!
    Pema Pera: Can you say more, Tahuti?
    Pema Pera: what is "reality" for you, what does it mean?
    Pema Pera: Bert, to see a world in a grain of sand . . . we can see Being in a grain of sand -- no divisibility like a cell
    Adelene Dawner: Well, you can't describe *Reality*. But you can experience Reality - at least, part of it - and describe your experience.
    Bertrum Quan: okay, as a grain of sand--silicon based...
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: yes, Adelene
    Pema Pera: to be more accurate, you can find that as Reality you can experience Reality
    Pema Pera: not as a "being"
    Pema Pera: a small relative being
    Tahuti Thor: imo...when people give descriptions on reality they are only reading their own subjectivity....not to deny that an external itself....but to question do we know the external directly is an unending one
    Pema Pera: as such you only can get a glow, a glimpse, an intuition
    Pema Pera: yes, Tahuti
    Tahuti Thor: not to deny that external exist*
    Pema Pera: but that is all on the relative level, and I agree
    Pema Pera: the question is, is there anything outside the normal world we deal with
    Pema Pera: the world with you as subject surrounded by objects

    Using the word `outside' was tricky here, in response to Tahuti's `external.' I did not mean that it was elsewhere or separate in any way.

    Adelene Dawner: You have a point, Tahuti. We may not be able to get a true sense of Reality by any means. But what's the harm in trying? And you could still be wrong, too.
    Pema Pera: your whole life and whole world is part of a huge you-in-world story -- is there anything outside the story? That's what we are talking about, Tahuti -- what do you think?
    Tahuti Thor: you mean....is there anything that lies outside of our experience?
    Pema Pera: yes
    Pema Pera: outside experience AND outside you AND outside time AND outside world
    Pema Pera: outside the whole schlebang of the story
    Tahuti Thor: have to think for minute
    Pema Pera: :)
    Pema Pera: That's what Adelene pointed to too.
    stevenaia Michinaga: you mean ALL that makes up Being
    Pema Pera: to get outside the movie story you can't "liberate" one of the movie characters
    Pema Pera: cutting out a movie character out of the movie would only damage the white movie scren (^_^)
    Pema Pera: *screen
    Pema Pera: true liberation is turning around and seeing the projector
    Pema Pera: Being seems to create all and everything, Steve
    Pema Pera: but that creation too is illusion
    Pema Pera: only appearance appearance
    Pema Pera: nothing substantial
    Pema Pera: so nothing is created
    Pema Pera: that is true freedom, to see and taste that
    Pema Pera: inexpressible joy
    Pema Pera: beyond all possibility of possession
    Pema Pera: *only appearance appears -- I meant to say, sorry
    Pema Pera: no matter and energy appears
    Pema Pera: only what appears
    Bertrum Quan: looking at projector is looking directly into the sun--can't do it for long AND you see more in the the shadows and reflections
    Pema Pera: the most flimsy ethereal unsubstantial . . . .
    Pema Pera: sorry, Bert, don't want to take that too literal :) only a ptr
    Pema Pera: any metaphor when taken too literal goes wrong
    Sky Szimmer: what do you mean by no matter and energy appear
    Pema Pera: matter is too heavy to exist and so is energy
    Pema Pera: the appearance of matter appears, yes, but no real matter exists
    Sky Szimmer: and energy?
    Pema Pera: same
    Pema Pera: only appearance
    Pema Pera: and even that in the most light way
    Pema Pera: *almost* nothing :)

    On the one hand, we were talking about the absolute as being in some sense `outside' the relative -- but it is more correct to say that it is outside the story of the relative.

    Pema Pera: but there are still interesting stories written in appearance!
    Pema Pera: like the one here and now in which we talk about appearance :)
    Pema Pera: we're doing something a bit "dangerous" from the point of view of the stories
    Pema Pera: we are shortcircuiting
    Pema Pera: literally!
    Pema Pera: we may fall out of the relative
    Pema Pera: quite possibly so, if we continue to talk like this
    Pema Pera: I hope so :)
    Tahuti Thor: im silent @ anything outside of experience ?
    Pema Pera: yes, there is no you there
    Pema Pera: the you has to become silent
    Pema Pera: and then IT can show you
    Pema Pera: (and then you may find that you were IT all along, that "you" were a shirt worn by IT)
    Pema Pera: one of our practices, Tahuti, a kind of exploration really
    Pema Pera: is to spend a while, a minute say, to just look around
    Pema Pera: while doing so, be aware of how you are normally seeing
    Pema Pera: then for another minute, step aside, so to speak, and let IT see
    Pema Pera: not with physical eyes. IT does not have eyes
    Tahuti Thor: k
    Pema Pera: but remarkable IT can "see" in a way that is actually related a bit to our seeing, close enough to use the same word
    Pema Pera: IT can see outer and inner
    Pema Pera: all your memories, expectations, grievances, worries
    Pema Pera: everything
    Pema Pera: The reason normal religions work is that they use a "God" figure to do this exercise
    Pema Pera: anthropomorphic
    Pema Pera: and they work well if you do it seriously
    Pema Pera: what we explore here is a high-grade distillation of religions
    Pema Pera: not on the rocks
    Pema Pera: but straight up
    Pema Pera: just let Reality/Being/It see
    Pema Pera: see the world
    Pema Pera: see you
    Pema Pera: see everything
    Pema Pera: the whole story
    Pema Pera: don't try to analyze what I am saying now
    Pema Pera: just do it
    Pema Pera: you'll be surprised
    Pema Pera: and then we can talk about what you experience
    Pema Pera: we are here 1 am 7 am 1 pm 7 pm SLT
    Pema Pera: so whatever you experience
    Pema Pera: you can talk about it here within 5 hours
    Pema Pera: :)

    Caledonia dropped in.

    Pema Pera: hi Cal!
    Tahuti Thor: buddha-mind
    Caledonia Heron: hola :)
    Caledonia Heron: I was in the neighborhood :)
    Pema Pera: yes, Tahuti
    Pema Pera: haha, Cal, great!
    Tahuti Thor: ok
    Pema Pera: yes, Tahuti, and as a real resource
    Pema Pera: as real as going to a gas station
    Pema Pera: and a lot cheaper :)
    Pema Pera: brb, have to find an electical outlet
    stevenaia Michinaga: But Pema, Being needs no electricity

    And I had to leave, since my battery charge had become very low.

    stevenaia Michinaga: Time to depart.. thank you all
    stevenaia Michinaga: see you all soon
    Caledonia Heron: bye :)
    Avastu Maruti: good bye my friends
    Tahuti Thor: SLT time?
    Caledonia Heron: bye Avastu :)
    Sky Szimmer: bye Avastu
    Tahuti Thor: 11 15 pm est now
    Sky Szimmer: i got to run too
    Sky Szimmer: bye

    Others were leaving too, and by the time I had found my outlet,
    and came back in again, the party was over :>).

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