2009.04.30 07:00 - Quiet Awareness Shining Through

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    The Guardian for this meeting was Adams Rubble. The comments are by Adams Rubble.

    (Eliza Madrigal thanks Adams Rubble for taking this session and will offer very limited commentary therefore. Adams later added one little comment)

    Adams Rubble: Hello Strannik :)
    Adams Rubble: Nice to meet you :)
    Strannik Zipper: Greetings! - likewise :)
    Adams Rubble: Congratulations on becoming a guardian :)
    Strannik Zipper: thank you, I'm excited to see how that will develop
    Adams Rubble: PaB is made up of a nice group of people
    Strannik Zipper: yes indeed!
    Strannik Zipper: how did you discover the group?
    Adams Rubble: It was back when the group met at the Zen Retreat
    Adams Rubble: I wondered who the people were who were going in and out of the teahouse
    Adams Rubble: finally I asked someone and here I am :)
    Adams Rubble: how about you?
    Strannik Zipper: haha
    Strannik Zipper: I met Pema at a two week retreat about 19 years ago
    Strannik Zipper: much of that retreat planted the seeds for his current work
    Adams Rubble: So you go way back :)
    Strannik Zipper: yeah - I didn't keep in touch, but I discovered his stuff on the internet - and found that we are still pursuing common interests
    Adams Rubble: that is very interesting
    Adams Rubble: :)
    Adams Rubble: It is nice you found us here :)
    Strannik Zipper: the retreat was based on the "Space Time and Knowledge" vision
    Adams Rubble nods
    Strannik Zipper: I'm amazed at how much is getting accomplished here
    Adams Rubble: Pema has great visions
    Strannik Zipper: indeed - I sat in for a couple of the phenomenology sessions as well
    Adams Rubble: Unfortunately I am not able to make those
    Adams Rubble: There are so many workshops now :)
    Strannik Zipper: I couldn't really either - this format is much better for me
    Adams Rubble: it is more inclusive
    Strannik Zipper: and has a better range of possible times - I'm on the West Coast, and Friday afternoons are pretty busy
    Adams Rubble: I remember being amazed last summer when Pema thought it would take three years to be able to find common vocabulary to talk about Being
    Adams Rubble: ah, yes, these times are good for the west coast :)
    Adams Rubble: and here you are 19 years later :)
    Adams Rubble: I thought I would be here a month of two :)
    Strannik Zipper: it has really been interesting so far
    Adams Rubble: I have been here since last June
    Adams Rubble: it has been quite a journey for me
    Strannik Zipper: you were doing Zen before this?
    Adams Rubble: No. I knew a little about Buddhism but only the basics. Nothing about Zen :)
    Adams Rubble: I was quite ognorant :)
    Adams Rubble: ignorant
    Strannik Zipper: ah! ignorance is a very high level in Zen, I have not yet attained it
    Adams Rubble: When Pema first talked about identifications I thought he was talking about name, rank and serial number
    Adams Rubble: hehe. yes
    Strannik Zipper: identifications can be tricky
    Adams Rubble: Ignorance came naturally to me :)
    Adams Rubble: but with second life i was able to come at it with an open mind
    Adams Rubble: do you have a Zen background?
    Strannik Zipper: SL is good for that - they are using these environments to help people with PTSD - less threatening than a physical group
    Strannik Zipper: I spent some time in a Zen center
    Strannik Zipper: our call to action "don't just do something, sit there""
    Adams Rubble: yes, I heard that :)
    Adams Rubble: have you met Isen yet?
    Strannik Zipper: I don't think so
    Adams Rubble: I think I heard it from him. He rarely comes to PaB but hangs around the Zen retreat. He is often there for zazen at 6pm SLT
    Adams Rubble: He has a place in the Mieum sim which is a place where mutiple traditions have built places
    Strannik Zipper: hmmm....I'll have to check that out
    Adams Rubble: The Zen Rtereat is next door in the Rieul sim
    Adams Rubble: That is now owned by Play as Being
    Strannik Zipper: OK, I may have seen at least part of it
    Adams Rubble: The Zen Retreat was built by Dakini, another one of our guardians
    Adams Rubble: it is beautifully done

    A fantastic way to discover zazen:

    Strannik Zipper: cool - I actually fell out of the sky by accident and landed in the middle of zazen once
    Strannik Zipper: which is how I discovered it :)
    Adams Rubble: I notice you have St. Catherine Monastery in your profile. That is one of my favorite places
    Adams Rubble: haha. that is funny :)
    Strannik Zipper: yes - it is amazing - I actually know people who have been there, and a friend of mine is a nun from the womens monastery (attached) on the red sea
    Adams Rubble: People are doing that all the time
    Adams Rubble: It must be quite moving to visit the real monastery
    Adams Rubble: but it is so fragile
    Strannik Zipper: they have one of the most amazing libraries - a treasury of ancient manuscripts
    Adams Rubble: we can kill it with too much love
    Strannik Zipper: the librarian is a monk from Texas
    Adams Rubble: oh yes, and the icons too
    Adams Rubble: oh wow. Who would have thought :)
    Adams Rubble: I saw some of the icons in the NY exhibition a few years back. They are the most moving pieces of art I have ever seen
    Strannik Zipper: There is an elder (staretz, geronda - the Orthodox equivalent of Zen master)
    Strannik Zipper: there as well
    Strannik Zipper: Oh yes, I saw the exhibit in LA
    Adams Rubble: I went back three times. I just wanted to spend as much time as I could with the icons
    Strannik Zipper: those have been windows for centuries of prayers
    Adams Rubble: yes
    Adams Rubble: and so many destroyed in the iconoclast. If it hadn;t been for St. Catherine's we would never had known
    Adams Rubble: It is humbling to know how little we know about what has gone before
    Adams Rubble: we only know sometimes by accident
    Strannik Zipper: right - they were able to protect from iconoclasm, the sack of constantinople and islamic conquest as well
    Strannik Zipper: they actually have a letter signed by Mohammed authorizing that the monastery should not be disturbed
    Adams Rubble nods
    Adams Rubble: have you met Ilike Falls who created the SL version of St. Catherine's
    Strannik Zipper: I'm not sure I've actually met then
    Strannik Zipper: er them
    Adams Rubble: Unfortunately he is going to dismantle it for lack of funds to keep it going
    Adams Rubble: But it probably will stay until November
    Strannik Zipper: oh dear! that would be a shame - what has he got - a whole sim?
    Adams Rubble: yes
    Adams Rubble: the whole island
    Strannik Zipper: that does get pricey
    Adams Rubble nods'
    Strannik Zipper: a lot of really nice places in SL have disappeared
    Adams Rubble: yes
    Strannik Zipper: There ought to be a grant program or something
    Adams Rubble: The Van Gogh place was a blow. There was no warning it was going to go
    Strannik Zipper: for some of these exceptional sites
    Adams Rubble: yes, it seems so
    Adams Rubble: Have you seen our exhibit :Sacred Art in a Virtual World"?
    Strannik Zipper: I walked through - I didn't have enough time to do it justice at the time
    Adams Rubble: We at least are trying to have a record of them
    Adams Rubble: There had been a good number of Orthodox churches which have disappeared
    Adams Rubble: and a Nunnery
    Strannik Zipper: I have a small skete on my island
    Adams Rubble: Unfortunately we did not et them photographed before they disappeared
    Adams Rubble: I will have to go see :)
    Adams Rubble: thank you :)
    Strannik Zipper: thats for the island
    Adams Rubble: thanks :)

    Roleplaying and Awareness

    Adams Rubble: Did you have anything you wanted to discuss today? I have just chated away :)
    Strannik Zipper: I just came here from a roleplay sim - which was causing me to think of other ways in which people "roleplay" in life
    Strannik Zipper: adopt different roles or identifications at different times
    Strannik Zipper: in a game it is one thing
    Strannik Zipper: but it ocurred to me that the dynamic of roleplaying actually takes place in various ways in the midst of life as well
    Adams Rubble nods
    Adams Rubble: We can learn much about that in second life
    Strannik Zipper: which is a way of focusing in one sense, but limiting being in another
    Adams Rubble nods
    Adams Rubble: Hello Henry
    Adams Rubble: Our identities make us react differently at different times
    Adams Rubble: it is hard to know that without doing some role playing
    Adams Rubble: is that what you were getting at?
    Strannik Zipper: right - some teachers have suggested that we are many people - that the mulitple personality disorder is only an advanced form of the human condition
    Adams Rubble nods
    Strannik Zipper: but that there is an essential background of awareness that is present through all of these roles
    Adams Rubble: I have been playing with that in SL :)
    Adams Rubble: Some of mine were fighting with each other
    Strannik Zipper: in SL it can become more obvious, because you can change your av with your mood
    Adams Rubble: yes
    Adams Rubble: helpful
    Strannik Zipper: I have seen a few different traditions that seem to address this in the same way
    Adams Rubble: What you say is interesting. I have found more awareness in being able to drop them
    Adams Rubble: let them go and there is a burden lifted from my shoulders
    Adams Rubble: but then again, I am learning more to accept them
    Strannik Zipper: right - they actually limit the personality in some way
    Adams Rubble: yes

    Quiet Awareness Shines Through.

    Strannik Zipper: these frequent times of quiet awareness actually stop these role fragments in their tracks, and let the underlying awareness come through
    Adams Rubble nods
    Strannik Zipper: this awareness creates a center which can absorb these different roles into an open spontaneousness without a role
    Adams Rubble: :)
    Strannik Zipper: without identifications - but before that happens, it is possible to seperate and just watch the roles happen
    Adams Rubble: Sometimes what happens can be amazing too :)
    Strannik Zipper: if one is conscious of when one is playing a role, then it is possible to give it some space, not restrict being with it so much
    Adams Rubble: yes, I can see that
    Adams Rubble: Nice observation!
    Strannik Zipper: well its not mine, and its not original, but a roleplay sim was a good reminder :)
    Adams Rubble: I was not aware I was doing that
    Adams Rubble: :)
    Adams Rubble: Role playing allows us to look at things from the opposite direction
    Strannik Zipper: someone else suggested to go ahead and play the role, but don't internalize it or identify with it - that is one way of not losing intrinsic awareness
    Adams Rubble: Some of us have learned about awareness from the role playing though. a different starting point
    Adams Rubble: but I see your point
    Adams Rubble: we reach a levl of awareness and have to keep finding a way back
    Strannik Zipper: in that case, perhaps it is useful to look at the same situations through different roles?
    Adams Rubble: It was for me
    Adams Rubble: I got an energy from role playing that kept me in motion'
    Strannik Zipper: interesting
    Adams Rubble: whenever I got stagnant the role playing renewed the energy
    Adams Rubble: It is not so important now but it was for the first few months
    Strannik Zipper: did you feel like the role provided an anchor to keep you from spacing out in some way?
    Adams Rubble is thinking
    Adams Rubble: I don' think i would use the word anchor but...
    Strannik Zipper: perhaps directed your energy?
    Adams Rubble: Hmmm
    Adams Rubble: It was a reference point
    Adams Rubble: It lightened things up for me
    Adams Rubble: so everything you wrote except anchor applies
    Adams Rubble: I was in motion, not anchored
    Adams Rubble: I almost can feel the motion thinking about it
    Strannik Zipper: perhaps I meant reference point instead of anchor
    Adams Rubble: Pema used the metaphor of sailing
    Adams Rubble: I was at sea and sailing
    Strannik Zipper: how did the role fit into the sailing?
    Adams Rubble: you ask tough questions. hehe
    Adams Rubble: it provided the enrgy
    Adams Rubble: maybe the wind in the sails :)
    Strannik Zipper: I think I can "feel" the roleplaying in the sailing
    Strannik Zipper: it seems to me that roleplay can also be like putting on different "hats"
    Adams Rubble: Unfortunately, I must go now. It was very nice meeting you and an interesting discussion. And yes...or putting on avatars :)
    Strannik Zipper: hahaha - will see you again one of these times
    Adams Rubble: yes, thank you and have a good day :)

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