The quieter you become, the more you can hear.
When I look at my life, I see that I wanted to be free of the physical plane, the psychological plane, and when I got free of those I didn't want to go anywhere near them.
I sit with people who are dying. I'm one of those unusual types that enjoys being with someone when they're dying because I know I am going to be in the presence of Truth.
To live another's dharma, to try to be a Buddha or to be a Christ because Christ did it, doesn't get us there; it just makes us mimickers.
Science and religion both teach that we are all interconnected, and thus interdependent. And at the very core, we are all One. But how do we live as if we know this?
My belief is that I wasn't born into Judaism by accident, and so I needed to find ways to honor that.
When you are in the presence of unconditional love, that is the optimum environment for your heart to open, because you feel safe, because you realize nobody wants anything from you. The minute that heart opens, you are once again letting in the flow. And that flow is where you experience God.
I take the assumption that every religion has been rooted in some mystical or transcendent experience. From that assumption, I just look at all the different systems as metaphors or doorways to God.
Across planes of consciousness, we have to live with the paradox that opposite things can be simultaneously true.
We often think that vulnerability is a kind of weakness, but there's a kind of vulnerability that is actually strength and presence.
I have always said that often the religion you were born with becomes more important to you as you see the universality of truth.
The universe is an example of love. Like a tree. Like the ocean. Like my body. Like my wheelchair. I see the love.
I will work on myself, since the work on myself is going to be the highest thing I can do for it all, since I understand that as man up-levels his own consciousness, he sees more creative solutions to the problems that he's confronting.
In mystical traditions, it is one's own readiness that makes experiences exoteric or esoteric. The secret isn't that you're not being told. The secret is that you're not able to hear.
If you keep examining your mind, you'll come to see that thoughts of who you are and how it all is are creating the reality you're experiencing.
I am embarrassed to admit what drew me to psychology. I didn't want to go to medical school. I was getting good grades in psychology and I was charismatic and people in the psychology department liked me. It was as low a level as that.
To him who has had the experience no explanation is necessary, to him who has not, none is possible.
It's only when caterpillar-ness is done that one becomes a butterfly. That again is part of this paradox. You cannot rip away caterpillar-ness. The whole trip occurs in an unfolding process of which we have no control.
Don't think about the past. Just be here now.
Don't think about the past. Just be here now. Don't think about the future. Just be here now.
Meditation means to be constantly extricating yourself from the clinging of mind.
By letting go of even the thought 'I,' and 'me' what is left?
There is nowhere to stand and no one to stand there.
No separation anywhere.
Neither this, nor that.
Just clarity and being.
When we see the Beloved in each person, it's like walking through a garden, watching flowers bloom all around us.
When you get old, everything changes -- your body changes, your family changes. You can't do what you've always done, anymore. And, either you can complain about things changing -- or you can be content. Instead of complaining, you can say: Oh, yesss! Look at all this change! You can welcome it.
Consciousness equals energy = love = awareness = light = wisdom = beauty = truth = purity. It's all the same trip.
The giving and receiving is the tricky thing. It's not the gift. It's what the heart says in giving the gift, and from my point of view, one doesn't give or receive -- that's a role we have to play. But the gift -- it's God's gift. I think that it's better to be souls than roles.
I'm a Bhakti, meaning I practice devotional yoga and the heart and love, so I say to people, start with your ego and go down to your heart.
As the haves and have-nots split further and further apart, destabilization ultimately leads to revolution, not evolution. If we're playing the evolution vs. revolution game, we are closer to revolution than we are to evolution in my concept.
If we can give up attachment to our roles as helpers, then maybe our clients can give up attachment to their roles as patients.
If we can give up attachment to our roles as helpers, then maybe our clients can give up attachment to their roles as patients and we can meet as fellow souls on this incredible journey. We can fulfill the duties of our roles without being trapped by over-identification with them.
So many times each day we support each other informally without ever becoming 'helper' or 'helped.' Perhaps we're finding an article of clothing for a partner, cutting bread for one of the children, collecting the mail for the person at the next desk, holding the coat for someone at a restaurant.
Institutions don't change the world in fundamental ways. The way the world changes is heart to heart to heart by individuals, not by institutions.
The God within is your Spiritual Heart. Your Soul. And in that individual Soul, rests God- rests the One. Go into your soul and your heart-space which can be Awareness, Love, Compassion, etc…and just BE your heart-space. BE your Soul so that you can LOVE unconditionally.
If you meditate regularly, even when you don't feel like it, you will make great gains, for it will allow you to see how your thoughts impose limits on you. Your resistances to meditation are your mental prisons in miniature.
I have written and spoken my thoughts over many years. Now I'm on new ground and spirit. I want to bring these together. Things like karma yoga, bhakti yoga, conscious dying, conscious aging. Consciousness.
In the depth of the soul is the atman, the oversoul. And that oversoul is really love and compassion, peace, joy, and wisdom.
When we're identified with Awareness, we're no longer living in a world of polarities. Everything is present at the same time.
The offering up or cleaning up ego stuff is called purification. Purification is the act of letting go. This is done out of discriminative awareness. That is, you understand that you are an entity passing through a life in which the entire drama is an offering for your awakening.
I don't really believe anything I say. Because the nature of my work concerns the spaces between the words, rather than the words themselves.
We are all affecting the world every moment, whether we mean to or not.
We are all affecting the world every moment, whether we mean to or not. Our actions and states of mind matter, because we are so deeply interconnected with one another.
I love everybody and they, in turn, love everybody, and that's spreading love heart to heart to heart. That's my approach of my work.
Early in the journey you wonder how long the journey will take and whether you will make it in this lifetime. Later you will see that where you are going is HERE and you will arrive NOW...so you stop asking.
Just because you are seeing divine light, experiencing waves of bliss, or conversing with Gods and Goddesses is no reason to not know your zip code.
A Tibetan Lama said to me, The best place to stand, Ram Dass, is halfway between hope and hopelessness. So I can write a scenario for the 21st century in either direction. One is that it all goes to hell and that it's truly the dark age.
You may have expected that enlightenment would come ZAP! instantaneous and permanent. This is unlikely. After the first ah-ha experience, it can be thought of as a thinning of a layer of clouds.
The way you come to fully appreciate the infusion of the Spirit is to more and more come fully into the moment, where this moment is enough.
In most of our human relationships, we spend much of our time reassuring one another that our costumes of identity are on straight.
The ego is frightened by death, because ego is part of the incarnation and ends with it. That is why we learn to identify with our soul, as the soul continues after death. For the soul, death is just another moment.
When you concentrate on the middle of your chest -- this is where loving awareness lives. This is the spiritual heart. Not the beating heart, not the emotional heart. This spiritual heart goes way back -- goes back many incarnations. We call it the soul.
You must come to see every human being Including yourself, As an incarnation In a body or personality, going through a certain Life experience which is functional.
Love is the most transformative medicine.
For Love slowly transforms you
Into what psychedelics only get you to glimpse.
What we're seeing out there is the projection of where we're at -- the projection of the clingings of our minds.
I think that people will find a tremendous joy and fulfillment in service to other human beings, and that often this is what is missing in their lives.
The reality we live in is selected by our conceptual definitions. You and I may be in the same physical space, but each of us will see it as entirely different.
The intellect is a beautiful servant but a terrible master. Intellect is the power tool of our separateness. The intuitive, compassionate heart is the doorway to our unity.
Down there, in your soul, you'll get far more love than you ever got out there.
And then the witness, if you go down into the witness, that has the spiritual being. Down there, in your soul, you'll get far more love than you ever got out there.
By going into third world countries and serving, by actually feeding and helping people, I've been led to focus a little more on how people here try to be happy by ignoring other people who are unhappy.
I was no longer needing to be special, because I was no longer so caught in my puny separateness that had to keep proving I was something. I was part of the universe, like a tree is, or like grass is, or like water is. Like storms, like roses. I was just part of it all.
I don't have a fear and urgency feeling inside myself about the state of the world affairs and everything collapsing.
So we won't take ourselves too seriously. Because taking something serious doesn't make it go away any faster. In fact, it keeps making it a little bit worse.
I remember my first visit with my guru. He had shown that he read my mind. So I looked at the grass and I thought, My god, he's going to know all the things I don't want people to know. I was really embarrassed. Then I looked up and he was looking directly at me with unconditional love.
The art of life is to stay wide open and be vulnerable, yet at the same time to sit with the mystery and the awe and with the unbearable pain -- to just be with it all.
The way we regard death is critical to the way we experience life. When your fear of death changes, the way you live your life changes.
The sooner one develops compassion in this journey, the better. Compassion lets us appreciate that each individual is doing what he or she must do, and that there is no reason to judge another person or oneself. You merely do what you can to further your own awakening.
Our whole spiritual transformation brings us to the point where we realize that in our own being, we are enough.
If I'm going to die, the best way to prepare is to quiet my mind and open my heart. If I'm going to live, the best way to prepare for it is to quiet my mind and open my heart.
This is the pathless path. Where the journey leads is to the deepest truth in you. It is really just returning to where you were initially before you got lost.
This is the pathless path - returning to where you were initially before you got lost. The deepest truth in you is where the journey leads - shedding, like taking off layers of an onion, until you come to your essence. The key to the spiritual journey is not acquiring something outside of yourself. Rather it is shedding the veils to come back to the deepest truth of your being.
Within the spiritual journey you understand that suffering becomes something that has been given to you to show you where your mind is still stuck. It's a vehicle to help you go to work. That's why it's called grace.
The dark night of the soul is when you have lost the flavor of life but have not yet gained the fullness of divinity. So it is that we must weather that dark time, the period of transformation when what is familiar has been taken away and the new richness is not yet ours.
I would like my life to be a statement of love and compassion -- and where it isn't, that's where my work lies.
If I see one dilemma with Western man, it's that he can't accept how beautiful he is. He can't accept that he is pure light, that he's pure love, that he's pure consciousness, that he's divine.
Counseling has to do with intuition, with work on oneself, with the quietness of one's mind and the openness of one's heart.
If you feel a sense of social responsibility, first of all keep working on yourself. Being peaceful yourself is the first step if you want to live in a peaceful universe.
Do what you can on this plane to relieve suffering by constantly working on yourself to be an instrument for the cessation of suffering. To me, that's what the emerging game is all about.
As you dissolve into love, your ego fades. You're not thinking about loving; you're just being love, radiating like the sun.
It's very different because the Indians live as if they are their souls and Americans live as if they are their egos.
Working on our own consciousness is the most important thing that we are doing at any moment, and being love is a supreme creative act.
My work as a human being is to quiet my mind, open my heart and do what I can to relieve the suffering with as much wisdom, skill, whatever I got.
I am not this body. I am in this body, and this is part of my incarnation and I honor it but that isn't who I am.
The spiritual journey is individual, highly personal. It can't be organized or regulated. It isn't true that everyone should follow one path. Listen to your own truth.
Prolong not the past. Invite not the future. Do not alter your innate wakefulness. Fear not appearances. There is nothing more than this.
My understanding of the way a child grows is that you create the garden, you don't grow the flower. You can merely fertilize the earth and keep it soft and moist, and then the flower grows as best it can.
You find the light within us. You don't find it within politics, but you find it in us. The soul is composed of love, compassion, wisdom, peace, and joy.
Everything changes once we identify with being the witness to the story, instead of the actor in it.
Healing does not mean going back to the way things were before, but rather allowing what is now to move us closer to God.
The heart surrenders everything to the moment. The mind judges and holds back.
The heart surrenders everything to the moment. The mind judges and holds back. In most of our human relationships, we spend much of our time reassuring one another that our costumes of identity are on straight. When we see the Beloved in each person, it's like walking through a garden, watching flowers bloom all around us.
Most of us are convinced that we are our egos, which is who we think we are. The ego is part of our incarnation. It dies with the body, which is why we are so afraid of death. Death scares the hell out of who you think you are, especially if you think you are this body.
When you begin to awaken, you see how caught you have been in the prison of your mind about certain reality… and how caught everybody else seems to be.
The universe is made up of experiences that are designed to burn out our reactivity, which is our attachment, our clinging, to pain, to pleasure, to fear, to all of it.
The universe is made up of experiences that are designed to burn out your attachment, your clinging, to pleasure, to pain, to fear, to all of it. And as long as there is a place where you’re vulnerable, the universe will find a way to confront you with it.
I feel vulnerable because my mind -- because of the stroke, my mind doesn't focus. And then I feel vulnerable because I don't understand the world around me.
I hang out with my guru in my heart. And I love every thing in the universe. That's all I do all day.
The stroke has given me another way to serve people. It lets me feel more deeply the pain of others; to help them know by example that ultimately, whatever happens, no harm can come. 'Death is perfectly safe,' I like to say.
The thinking mind is what is busy. You have to stay in your heart. You have to be in your heart. Be in your heart. The rest is up here in your head where you are doing, doing, doing.
In working with those who are dying, I offer another human being a spacious environment with my mind in which they can die as they need to die. I have no right to define how another person should die. I'm just there to help them transition, however they need to do it.
Working with the dying is like being a midwife for this great rite of passage of death. Just as a midwife helps a being take their first breath, you help a being take their last breath.
As we grow in our consciousness, there will be more compassion and more love, and then the barriers between people, between religions, between nations will begin to fall. Yes, we have to beat down the separateness.
Unconditional love really exists in each of us. It is part of our deep inner being. It is not so much an active emotion as a state of being. It's not 'I love you' for this or that reason, not 'I love you if you love me.' It's love for no reason, love without an object.
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