Silent Retreat – poem by Dorothy Hunt

Retreat

Sit quietly.
Strip off the masks
of self-deception,
self-reflection,
self-improvement,
self-judgment.
If you want truth,
these activities waste energy.

Sit quietly.
What is peering out
from behind your mask?
Without relying on a single thought,
who are you?
No matter what you see,
there is more unseen.
Always, the Mystery invites itself deeper.

© Dorothy S. Hunt

Longing: a beautiful poem that says IT ALL.

Longing   ©by Dorothy Hunt.

My longing has turned to dust!
Truth brought me the sun,
the moon, ten thousand
universes. How, then,
could there still be longing?

My longing has turned to ash
swirling over creation
from Love’s ceaseless fire;
burning is its priceless gift.

The river of my longing
reversed course; its currents
returned to the Heart.
Now there is nowhere to go.

I stand alone, the source
and the fulfillment
of all my desires.
Longing lit the pathway Home.

© Dorothy Hunt, February 14, 2010

the following is a note that Dorothy sent out with the above poem.

Dear Friends,

Our longing for God, Self, truth, love or awakening is our longing for what is already here, already awake, already whole, already free. The deepest longing of our heart can direct us Home when we follow longing to its source. Yet, it is the mind’s act of seeking which seems to move us away from what is awake this very moment. We long for what we do not believe we already are; yet when Truth reveals itself in its own experience, we realize the timeless Mystery has never been absent from a single moment or experience. It moves life—including the movements we imagine are our “own.”

The mind has many ideas about what it does not know. Yet any mental conclusion can become an obstacle to being open and present here and now. Can we stop comparing, stop judging, stop seeking, stop moving away from what we do not know? Can we face into the Mystery that is calling to us in our longing? Longing is not the same as searching. Longing is felt in the heart; seeking is an activity of mind. Longing can break us open; seeking simply exhausts us–which, of course, may be the point!

A time may come when our longing ceases–not because we have found an object of our desire or because the mind finally “got it,” but because our longing eventually returns us Home—home to what we’ve always been.

Blessings,
Dorothy

http://www.dorothyhunt.org

Gicky Guru or a Real Teacher?

Just because someone is sitting in the teachers chair, doesn’t mean a thing! Listening deeply to what is present here inside, has become much more a reality thanks to a visit in Toronto from a so called non-dual ‘awakened ‘ teacher a while back. I see how the intention to please others and believing I was responsible for their happiness has motivated so much of my life.  Perhaps 99%.

Nothing new to have false teachers, just shocked me that I would go to the weekend after feeling so strongly inside not to host his event and have him live at my house while he is here.  The addiction to not deeply listening internally to what is ‘here’ has up to this point been strong.  On some level, I chose to forget my initial intuition about this teacher? Thank God, the first clue I did listen to, was when I was asked to host him here when he was visiting from his home in Europe. My first instinct was an across the board NO and that is what I said. Unusual for me as I am often the dog in the world of service. I suggested my friends in Toronto host this teacher. They agreed and as a result, I found myself going down to his satsangs. Absolutely anyone can write a book and sound enlightened.

Om swaha….at my own delusion or that part in me that was addicted to believing that answers/help are outside. It was a traumatic weekend on many levels and I can’t blame the teacher. I can only blame myself for putting myself in the position of thinking he had something to ‘teach or share.’ I unconsciously put him in a position of power. I suppose he did have something to teach me and that was run the other the direction and if on some level I am resisting what a teacher is saying — THAT IS HONORING THE TRUTH IN MY SELF and not something wrong with me as he would like me to believe. Perhaps by even going to hear a teacher speak could be coming from a deep place inside that thinks something is wrong with me…. okay I own that. I own that I can project on a teacher, but I honestly think that sometimes even teachers can project their ‘stuff” on unsuspecting students.

Get the big picture!  Whole Tulip

Can we go listen to a teacher or sit in satsang simply in Stillness, without wanting or expecting anything?  I have no idea as I don’t think I’ve done that often.

Consider a radio – it has energy going through it, and one can pick different channels to hear different music, talk shows etc. Same thing with humans and energy. How one person perceives energy can be quite different than another and for one person to force their energetic perspective on another is a violation. This is a boundary that I didn’t have on that weekend. A so called ‘awakened’ teacher in my misguided perception would know not to force themselves on a person sitting in the ‘question chair’. Then again, I went into a post traumatic state of numbness and couldn’t feel or move, so I am discovering the aspect of compassion to that part inside that couldn’t move and didn’t understand what was going on. The meeting with this so called teacher re awakened all the ‘bad’ memories with men I had when I was younger.  I thank him for that.  Guess it was time to deal with those energies again.

What this experience did for me was to really hit me over the head with a sledge hammer – how I give my power away, consciously or not. Almost constantly, never being true to what is my own experience. I am learning, but wow! As all humans, I have/had some really deep seated sticky patterns that want to keep coming up and playing.  Some I’ve pushed under the floor boards, hoping they wouldn’t emerge again.   Hiding seems to be over !!! I suppose I could thank that so called ‘teacher’ for that adjustment in the ‘addicted seeker energy’, that still emerges. I hope I learned whatever lesson I was meant to learn…..

My role was sitting in the chair and letting this so called teacher ‘teach’. I wouldn’t call his expression at all related to the non-dual teachings. I never knew what spiritual rape was until going to a meeting with him. I think perhaps, he is trying to be a Muktananda kind of teacher and awaken people’s dormant spiritual energy. Very dangerous what he was doing from my limited perspective.

I’ve been there and done that ‘waking up the kundalini thing’ and it is not something to be played with lightly. I know from my own experience in my early 20’s the dangers of playing with fire.

As I sat and watched him work with others and always talk about getting in the body, it didn’t seem like he was getting people into the physical body at all, but getting them to feel ‘energy’ in their bodies. His whole approach was energetic and we were supposed to feel him inside of us. He would say things to me like, ‘feel me inside of you’. Yuck, gucky, let me go vomit. Did I ask you to get inside of me..(not consciously at least) .. okay it is beginning to feel like a guy forcing himself on me and trying to make me feel guilty if I’m not into it.  Or – there is something wrong with me because I won’t let him  in… OMG.  Is this guy for real?

I’d like to ask… To what are you referring as the ‘you’ who wants to get inside of me??? He had a gift with energy and I felt he was getting caught in the oldest trap in the spiritual world. Getting lost his siddhis (powers). What does this energy stuff have to do the Truth for example? I’ll answer that… nothing. At least nothing in the way he was expressing it. This is all simply my deluded opinion and there were people at the satsang who were gaga about this teacher. The energy experience was  new  and very seductive for them.  Simply spiritual candy as some teachers call it.

A friend told me her way of deciding if a teacher is for her. Take them off the podium of the teachers chair and see if what they say would be something you would resonate with from a stranger for example. Okay, here are some of the words this teacher said to me within the first 3 minutes; ‘Its the striper, I can’t wait for you to take it all off on the table, I want to be there, you are the baddie, the wild woman, you are so bad, we can make love energetically, let yourself feel me inside of you etc.” . Over and over again he called me the stripper and the most controlled  juicey person he had ever met.  OMG….. Yes I am serious! Hey, i’m am a cooked turkey, not a spring chicken!  These are the words of a non-dual teacher who people seem to worship  because he has an ability to move energy?   blah blah blah.  I’ll say it again.. anyone can write a book or talk about TRUTH.  Integrity is a quality that I choose  is part of ‘living the Truth’.  His expression os so called Truth,  did not ring in on the level of integrity !!!!  Its only my opinion of course.

There is a reason the yogis in the old days taught the *yamas and niyamas before any other yogic practices.  That reason is so that the humans don’t act as animals when the spiritual energies  awaken and integrity doesn’t get lost in the excitement of the energy.

Whether  that teacher was coming from a True non-dual perspective or simply from missing his wife……Everything/everyone can teach us something and this lesson was  a big one for me.

om swaha…….

A prayer …..

May the voice of Truth, Reign Strong and Free in those of us who had it crushed in our early years. May the courage to speak come through the ‘conditioned hells’ that seem to keep moving us in directions of pain. May the STOPPING become complete.

Sending compassion, sweetness and love to that part inside that looks to authority for answers. May we  (I) awaken to that which doesn’t need to ask questions, which doesn’t need to be fixed, which doesn’t need to change. May we(I) give Space to that in us that has been here since before we were born and started to seek.

This tulip was in my garden last spring….

1.Yamas (restraints) has five parts:

a) non-violence (ahimsa)

b) truthfulness (satya)

c) non-stealing (asteya)

d) continence(brahmacharaya)

e) non-hoarding (aparigraha)

2. Niyamas (observances) has five parts:

a) cleanliness (shaucha)

b) contentment (santosh)

c) austerity (tapas)

d) self-study (svadhyaya)

e) surrender to God (Iswara-pranidhana)

Inspiration by Lynda Cole

You are an inspiration … in the journey to discover your truth, you have seen, if only momentarily, through the apparent burden of anything from the past. This seeing-through requires vulnerability and courage. You have seen through the clouds to the pure, open sky.
In these effortless moments we see clearly that what we have been yearning for is always and already present. True nature has found us.
You are an inspiration because I know it requires a courageous willingness to be conscious, seeing through the illusion that we are separate individuals while simultaneously celebrating the gifts of our humanity. In this willingness is the potentiality to transform not only ourselves but all of humanity, awakening to the realization that we are one and the same.

…. Now, go and have some fun!

© Lynda Cole

For more info/teachings of Lynda Cole go to http://www.lyndacole.org


The Quest for Enlightenment

The quest for enlightenment is the quest for truth or reality. It’s not a quest for ideas about truth—that’s philosophy. And it’s not a quest to realize your fantasies about truth—that’s fundamentalized religion. It’s a quest for truth on truth’s terms. It’s a quest for the underlying principle of life, the unifying element of existence.

In your quiet moments of honesty, you know that you are not who you present yourself as, or who you pretend to be. Although you have changed identities many times, and changed them even in the course of a single day, none of them fit for long. They are all in a process of constant decay. One moment you’re a loving person, the next an angry one. One day you’re an indulgent, worldly person; the next a pure, spiritual lover of God. One moment you love your image of yourself, and the next you loathe it. On it goes, identified with one self-image after another, each as separate and false as the last.

When this game of delusion gets boring or painful enough, something within you begins to stir. Out of the unsatisfactoriness of separation arises the intuition that there is something more real than you are now conscious of. It is the intuition that there is truth, although you do not know what it is. But you know, you intuit that truth exists. Truth that has absolutely nothing to do with your ideas about it. But somehow you know that the truth about you and all of life exists.

Once you receive this intuition, this revelation, you will be compelled to find it. You will have no choice in the matter. You will have consciously begun the authentic quest for enlightenment, and there is no turning back. Life as you’ve known it will never be quite the same.

A great Zen master said, “Do not seek the truth; simply cease cherishing illusions.” If there is a primary practice or path to enlightenment, this is it—to cease cherishing illusions. Seeking truth can be a game, complete with a new identity as a truth-seeker fueled by new ideas and beliefs. But ceasing to cherish illusions is no game; it’s a gritty and intimate form of deconstructing yourself down to nothing. Get rid of all of your illusions and what’s left is the truth. You don’t find truth as much as you stumble upon it when you have cast away your illusions.

As the master said, “Do not seek the truth.” But you can’t stop seeking just because some ancient Zen master said to. Seeking is an energy, a movement toward something. Spiritual seekers are moving toward God, nirvana, enlightenment, ultimate truth, whatever. To seek something, you must have at least some vague idea or image of what it is you are seeking. But ultimate truth is not an idea or an image or something attained anew. So, to seek truth as something objective is a waste of time and energy. Truth can’t be found by seeking it, simply because truth is what you are. Seeking what you are is as silly as your shoes looking for their soles by walking in circles. What is the path that will lead your shoes to their soles? That’s why the Zen master said, “Do not seek the truth.” Instead, cease cherishing illusions.

To cease cherishing illusions is a way of inverting the energy of seeking. The energy of seeking will be there in one form or another until you wake up from the dream state. You can’t just get rid of it. You need to learn how to invert it and use the energy to deconstruct the illusions that hold your consciousness in the dream state. This sounds relatively simple, but the consequences can seem quite disorienting, even threatening. I’m not talking about a new spiritual technique here; I’m talking about a radically different orientation to the whole of your spiritual life. This is not a little thing. It is a very big thing, and your best chance of awakening depends on it. “Do not seek the truth; simply cease cherishing illusions.” And if you’re like most spiritually oriented people, your spirituality is your most cherished illusion. Imagine that.

© 2007 by Adyashanti.

What Can Be Said About Love?

What Can Be Said About Love?

© Dorothy Hunt, 2009. All rights reserved.

The following poetry and words are written by the wonderful poet, spiritual teacher and psychotherapist Dorothy Hunt from San Francsico CA. They came out of her monthly newsletter which I highly recommend. http://www.dorothyhunt.org


What can be said about love?
Nothing, really.
We are either being love
or we’re talking about it.
Talk is cheap; love can’t be bought.

It is not about flowery words,
or the agony or ecstasy of emotion.
It is not even about relationship,
or merging union with the Divine.
Where are there two?blleed

And yet . . . and yet . . .
This wordless pull of connection–
even when the mind
wants no connection.
What is that unsought warmth?

That melting of resistance,
the fire that makes
even iron turn to liquid,
or a caterpillar dissolve
before wings emerge?

Love’s only true language is Being.
Demand love, and it will flee.
Bargain with love, and you will lose.
Eventually, you will rejoice in defeat;
Love refuses all separation.

Love moves, responds, touches,
returns the unwanted pieces of your life
back to wholeness. Its language is truth,
and truth speaks love, but these are words,
and not alive, until your heart opens.

Every moment love is gently knocking
from inside, longing to flow out;
but we are busy looking elsewhere,
searching in the market place of “me’s”
to fill the emptiness that is, itself, vast love.

What can be said about love?
Nothing, really. These words fail.
We are either being love
or we’re talking about it.
Choose the former, if you have a choice,
for love alone transforms.

© Dorothy Hunt, 2009. All rights reserved. http://www.dorothyhunt.org

Dorothy continued in her Moon Mountain Sangha newsletter with the following words.

Dear Friends,

I would like to invite each one of you into your true, open, and undivided Heart to discover the Love that is already deeply present. The mind asks, “How?” But it is not the mind that will tell us. There is no “I am loving” in the deepest love, no efforting, no demanding, no thoughts of worthiness or unworthiness, and no one claiming to be Love. Love simply shines as itself on whatever it sees. Such love has no conditions, demands no rewards. Love is all it knows to do or be. It springs from Awareness, arises right out of Emptiness. This is a love that transforms whatever it touches but has no agenda for anything to be transformed. It is totally unself-consciousness; it simply moves when our heart is opened, when we are no longer fiercely guarding our separation. A little teaching story told by Anthony de Mello goes like this:

What is love?
The total absence of fear.
What do people fear?
Love.

We can remain “separate” to the death, but in love, we cannot continue to hold ourselves separate. Perhaps this is the real reason we fear love while simultaneously longing for it. Are we ready to let go of the “one” searching for love so that Love can simply move us?

© Dorothy Hunt, 2009. All rights reserved. http://www.dorothyhunt.org

“Come Empty Handed” poetry by Dorothy Hunt

“Come Empty Handed” © Dorothy Hunt, 2007

Come empty-handed to the

dwelling place of your own heart,

not knowing what to expect,

not caring if you find an innocent child,

a roaring tiger, a vast emptiness

or the river of your drowning.

Not caring if you find nothing at all

or everything your heart’s desired.

Face where the mind cannot go,

the place beyond division or distinctions.

Even then, you will not see God.

You will discover the darkness of Unknowing,

before there was a mind to speak of God,

or truth, or freedom.

Yet in this infinite Mystery,

you will be God’s seeing,

God’s listening,

God’s shining.

And everywhere you look,

there you will be looking back at yourself.

© Dorothy Hunt 2007.

check out Dorothy Hunt at http://www.dorothyhunt.org