Sunday, December 20, 2015

listen closely

If you were to listen closely, right now... what would happen? What do we mean by "closely", when we ask someone to listen... carefully, or patiently, or intimately, or  deeply, or whatever? It would seem that we're suggesting that if we "get quiet", we'll at last be able to hear things, experience things, as they "really are". We'll in the process be changed, and become "who we really are".  Indeed, many who've compare themselves to who they imagine they should be, as meditators, yogis, athletes, business people, artists, students, teachers, and parents, for that matter, often reproach themselves for not being "good listeners".

This moral injunction to "really listen" presupposes that there's a true, purer reality that we're missing, ignoring - a real us, a real them, real communication that's being passed over, because we lack the sincerity, generosity, or maybe even character and will power to for once, "listen closely".

Is it true?

Is there really something essential we're missing unless we get quiet? Awareness? The Self? Consciousness? Presence? Peace Of Mind? A Higher Power? A Little Voice Within? Something true, and noble and sacred - our true self, deep down there underneath the chatter and fear, a Real Sense of Purpose, maybe even the Voice of God, waiting for us to quiet our impishly disobedient "monkey mind"?

Why can't we ever get it right? Are we basically wrong? Are we ... sinners? As we hear ourselves ask this very question or reject this question and as we try to imagine ourselves listening closely to listening closely, we may notice that the question being questioned, and the thought being thought never sit still, keep shifting, and that as it moves, we move - movement just moves - spontaneous, unpredictable, incomparable, immeasurable.

What is going on? 

Could it perhaps be that this quiet has never been experienced before and so we have NO idea what awaits us in its unprecedented grasp? Maybe this is the first time we've ever listened quite this way, and perhaps this experience might therefore be encountered less as a mission, a burden, a challenge, known and mapped out, and more honestly as an adventure in the unknown, the always unknown, all around us, in every direction, alive and at work in this very thought that is thinking this very thought - alive. There might be the realization right now, while reading this, while listening with our eyes, reading with our ears, whispering closely with our inner mind, with the mind that narrates the story of a mind, that we have no idea what listening is. Maybe this has never happened before, and on the level of description, maybe this isn't even happening now. Prayer, creative visualization, meditation, contemplation, and hypnosis, by focusing the so called mind, and its so called focus, on an imagined aspect of our imagined life may begin to reveal to us that ...


You tell me. Right now. And how. With invisible ink, written by invisible hands. Are you awake? Are you asleep? Or are you very busy listening closely...?

Monday, December 14, 2015

a theatre near you

What do we see? Is it scary? Is it lonely? Is it joyful? Are we angry? Are we lonely? Are we joyful? Are we nostalgic? Are we fearful? Are we expectant? Are we in wonder? What is this life that’s passing us by, passing through us, passing on the screen of the eyes behind our eyes?

What are we focusing on right now and how do the lights up there on that screen make us feel? Can we shift our focus to something that makes us feel worse? Just to see how that works, just to see how that feels? Can we shift our focus to something that feels better - just to know that we can, if we so choose? If we can’t seem to entirely shift our focus, if we believe we’re too fascinated with one part of the show to the exclusion of others, can we perhaps focus on just a small aspect of that part of our focus? Perhaps we can then notice how that tiny leverage, that tiny shift, that difference, that nuance, however minute, even infinitesimal makes us feel…

Two people watching a movie never experience it the same way, and no one person ever sees the same movie twice, lives the same emotion twice, has the same experience twice, is the same person even once. So as we look closer at looking itself, it might be revealed that there’s no movie at all, no solid experience as such, nothing at all down there - just our response to our response to our response…

So now we notice more and more that as we shift the music of our response by shifting our so called focus, the tonality of our so called life, the emotional color of our so called, so felt, so believed in world reinvents itself – simultaneously, invisibly. Trickster, this life seems to shift so seamlessly, it reincarnates as though it had always been so, right now, forever -solid and true. Even as we see through this and we come to experience our experience as nothing more, nothing less than our response to experience - why do we still often feel trapped, stuck, confused about confusion – stuck in the content, feeling bad about feeling bad? Why does it seem so hard to feel good?  May I ask it very simply? Someone, something deep down, high up, front and center,  please give us a hint about a clue to an intuition, however minute, even infinitesimal, a tiny whisper in our ear in answer to the question –

“How do we make life feel good?”

We believe that we believe that it’s difficult – hard work to change.  We believe we know who we are and we are what we know what we believe. As though belief is a thing and it is solid. As though our life is a thing, our self is a thing and it is solid and we know what it is, and we know what we know what we know. Yet the slightest shift in the movie can make us respond powerfully, shift our mood powerfully. Perhaps, if we become aware how our focus appears as belief, how what we believe about our focus feeds itself again and again as the very music of how we feel right now, we might let go of our interest in the content of our belief, and we might find our focus going to focus itself… and how it feels.  Believing that shifting our focus is difficult and laborious feels a certain way. Believing that shifting our focus is effortless, creative and fun feels a certain way, and we might feel it right now, reading this.

What do we believe about this movie, and how does it feel? Do we want to experience pain right now or pleasure?                 

What is the most pleasurable belief we can have about pleasure right now? I’m going to ask myself this very question, right now.  Together, let’s ask this, just to see how we feel, in this moment, right now, even as we begin to ask…

Monday, December 7, 2015

let's go deeper

let's go deeper

When people say “deep”? or “deeper?”, what do they mean?
Are we living at the surface, and there’s something more true, more real “down there"? When we get down there, will we have found the “real us”? Where are we, even now? Where is now? Is it even possible to work on oneself or is the whole story of progress a mirage about a mirage? How can we ever truly compare ourselves to ourselves?

Our only life in this moment is incomparable, perfectly seamless and invisible - boundless joys, intricate pains , our experience so real ... that it's real. So real that no one can feel us but us, and perhaps not even. There is no friend who can know the joy and pain we know in friendship, and no trace of that friendship. No one can truly recognize how far we’ve gone as we go deeper.

Perhaps “going deeper” is less about moving someplace, or changing something
and more about seeing “underneath” the words we use. Seeing underneath the words that use us to describe our experience. We might begin to tangibly sense the very heat of the words, thoughts, images and ideas have on us at this very moment - right now. Perpetual self hypnosis, dream without a driver, we might sense that we are a compelling story improvising itself and although none of it is real, this very moment is exquisite. 

We might discover ourselves, our whole wide world, our life, our endless relationships and repetitions, this quivering fragile now to be a perfect echo chamber of communication, instant karma of call and response, a feedback loop so seamless that it is invisible, a drum beat where we ever dance to the often frightening music of our own footfalls.  

At this very moment, what is our innervision? Without knowing what that means, what anything means, what does this feel like now? 
Any approach to getting intimate with oneself is as valid as any other, because the content, words and images, are less real than how we feel about them right now. The words meditation, hypnosis, self study, therapy, prayer are less important than what we do with any of of them right now, how we use them - to feel good, to feel good, yes - to feel good.

Hypnosis is just a metaphor for heightened communication, heightened learning, great affection. If our very reality is ever reshaping as we learn right now, what are we learning right now? Where shall we go, now that we are free from the need to be free? If we start from what we want to feel, perhaps it doesn't matter that we're not going anywhere else. Perhaps it has never mattered who we are, or where we are, or what is happening,  or what will happen, or what has happened, as we enjoy the growing suspicion that at any given moment we can learn to feel good, we can learn to go deeper.