Self and 'not self'

I am not writing this to be hurtful to you, but what i watched wasn't just an editing thing. It was a side of you Barbara that is real, and you know it. the truth hurts.(you are very good at dishing it out to others, i hope you will listen and learn). I watched a very controlling, rude, individual named barbara, tell a very kind family named the loupe's how they should live their life. Barbara, the words that came out of your mouth, are more disgusting then anything a human could digest. Your actions were unkind, thoughtless and all about you.
i hope and pray you will learn something about yourself by watching yourself on this show. You have just let millions of people see a side of you that is sooooooo ugly and sad. You have no idea how the world lives. I am amazed and shocked how little you knew of another state. sad. California is not the only place in this big world of ours. There is a whole other part,, with people of all walks, culture, eating habits, languages. You would probably be shocked to know these people actually live in your state too, even close by you. i wonder if you could treat them with a little respect and kindness.
Focus on the hurtful words you say, the tone of your voice, the judgement you show to others. it's very unkind and rude.
And the way you treated the dog was also unkind. hope you learn from diane and dieago, and ZZ. i thought they were so kind, sweet, patient, loving, and non-judgemental. They, were an example of kindness.[/quote]


  • edited December 1969
    Self and 'not self'
    The experience of self sets in motion 'not-self'. Being social animals this 'not self' extrapolates to 'other than self', e.g. 'you', 'them', 'it'. So just as [chref=2] difficult and the easy complement each other[/chref], so also do 'self' and 'not self'; thus we get 'I' and 'you', 'we' and 'them', 'I' and 'it', etc. Our social instinct may actually be the most powerful driving influence in all we do. This applies to everyone, from hermits on mountain tops to gossiping busy bodies at beauty parlors. All our actions arise out of our need to [chref=4]Soften the glare[/chref] of this duality. This is what drives us to do, beyond our basic animal functions, what we end up doing or avoid doing.

    More significantly, this applies to the 'I' and 'other' with whom we carry on our internal dialogue (Mmm, that reminds me of "to be, or not to be..."). The vivid nature of this duality we experience is a direct result of our big brain. This duality experience leaves us with a fundamental sense of disconnection that we struggle from birth to death to mediate, moderate, or failing that, medicate. The core purpose of religion is to provide a path to reconnect and blur the lines of duality. Does it work? To a degree it does, but the hype surpasses the reality ten fold - at least. The interesting thing about Taoism is how it attempts to muddle some of the inevitable hype by the disclaimer at the beginning the Tao Te Ching. i.e., [chref=1]The way that can be spoken of is not the constant way...[/chref] and [chref=1]"These two are the same, But diverge in name as they issue forth"[/chref], and so on.

    Nevertheless, our coping mechanisms, whether religious or secular, don't have to be perfect to be useful. Whatever helps us cope with our sense of disconnection, right? Well, not exactly. The main thrust of religion is to point out which coping paths may actually make matters worse. And it works pretty good for those seriously seeking contentment. Knowing what not to do is far more feasible than knowing what to do! If nothing else, one can do [chref=48] less and less until one does nothing at all...[/chref] :)
  • edited December 1969
    I keep checking this posting to see who has replied and ... no one. So I guess I will. You are talking about no self as part of the world of duality...the me/you or the internal observer/observed. But when I meditate and have direct experience of no self, it seems to me to be beyond duality. Well, I say "I have" but there is no "I" to have the experience and as soon as "I" return, poof, it is gone. So that "no self" is beyond duality. I don't believe there really is a self. All there is is awareness, consciousness and who I am is really no one. What a relief!

    Am I talking about something completely different?
  • edited December 1969
    [cite] Lynn Cornish:[/cite] You are talking about no self as part of the world of duality...the me/you or the internal observer/observed. But when I meditate and have direct experience of no self, it seems to me to be beyond duality. .... What a relief!

    Now this "world of duality" is simply a reflection of how the nervous system works. We evolved to see reality this way because it furthers survival at the most basic level. Having as big a brain as we do make quite a mountain out of this neural mole hill.

    Thus, I see we make too much ado of words. Words carry so much emotional meaning that they end up misleading us somewhat. The 'I' or 'self' is an experience, as is 'non-self' or 'no I'. Both are experiences, no different than 'thirst' and 'quenched', 'hot' and 'cold', 'awake' and 'sleep', and of course 'life' and 'death'. The awareness of one begets an awareness of it's opposite as the 'tao' ebbs and flow. That's not saying there isn't a mystery there, 'mystery' and 'this'. But are they not the same in the end, or is it the beginning? But I digress... :)

    If one can accept that 'stress' and 'relief' are two necessary sides of life's coin, it may be easier to take both in stride. 'Joy' followed by 'sorrow' and so on. This is more of a Taoist view, the ebb and flow of nature is how it is supposed to be. It's natural. Nevertheless, we tend to hold out for perfection in a kind of "want our cake and eat it too".

    I find I appreciate the 'peace' of mind following the current 'war', whatever it might be. This is not that spiritually romantic. It is the mundane reality we all experience. A hard days work followed by a restful night. Of course, some of us suffer profoundly, enough to jump of the bridge. This is a consequence of our circumstances (civilization), but nevertheless is part of the natural process, not different than when a comet hits earth causing all the dinosaurs to die off.

    Well, all this is just off the top of my head. I'm not even going to read it over for errors, so there! :D
  • edited December 1969
    I read your words and I have an inkling that I am using the not self as a God out there somewhere. Like transcending the duality is nirvana, enlightenment, heaven, whatever. It's so hard not to think like that. I am a problem, let's fix it.

    And then I remembered that at Shambhala Thursday night, the quasi-leader Pam said that the absolute and the relative are the same thing. What??? But here is that message again so maybe there's something to it.

    My understanding feels fleeting, just beyond my grasp. Maybe that's good!

    My experience is that things have to settle in my mind, and permeate my being before I can truly say that something is true for me. So I'll just have to give this one some time...

    Maybe by Thursday... : D
  • JoeJoe
    edited December 1969
    I?m finding my deepest contentment these days when there?s little distinction between my ?self?, and ?not-self?, ?I? and ?you?. This happens when I?m truly embracing that we?re all the same, we?re all fragile human beings, struggling with desire. We?re all suffering to the extent that desire grabs a hold of us. (This most certainly includes myself.)

    We all share the human condition, and I?ve yet to meet anyone totally removed from this. (I?ve read a bit of the Dalai Lama, and he doesn?t seem to consider himself beyond human suffering either.)

    When I think that I don?t know, when the lines are blurred, when I?m being ?hesitant and tentative?, then I feel more connected, and definitely more compassionate.
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