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About Nightwise

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  1. It's interesting. I remember this topic having far more comments than it does now. I also remember having written something here which now appears to also have been removed, even though what I said I tried to be fairly nuanced and objective about it. I don't care if you're for or against vaccinations. Personally I'm undecided but I'm leaning more towards the mainstream narrative and I will probably end up taking the vaccine. I am however as of now contemplating whether to take the vaccine now that it has become available to me by studying different sources, for and against, and I have seen actually very intelligent people being able to have a mature discussion about the risks and dangers of vaccinations and the current situation who, quite frankly, are stage Yellow thinkers or at the very least have quite a bit of Yellow in them (even if they are not centered there), even though society may coin them as indeed conspiracy thinkers. I'm not saying they are correct, and I'm not saying they are wrong. I'm just saying that those who subscribe to conspiracy theories aren't automatically dumb or uneducated; Although many of them may be. Leo, moderators, please read carefully what I'm about to say and I urge you to take some time to seriously consider and contemplate about what I'm about to write. I'm not saying you need to take everything I write here exactly as I say it, but use your own wisdom to discern for yourself what is valuable and not valuable about what I have written in this post. I don't like what I see happening on this forum, because this looks like censorship. I'm not defending anti-vaxxers; I'm defending freedom of speech. I'm not even taking that notion of 'freedom of speech' as if it were some absolute Good that overrides all else, because I understand the need for the forum to have order and to be regulated. I understand that there may be a consensus that risk of infecting people with conspiracy-alike narratives may be seen a greater cost than abolishing the freedom of speech in this particular area, but I beg to differ. I think that whatever we are in opposition towards to the extent that we judge, deny, ridicule, ignore or even censor something, there is a shadow that is going to be created. With the people in my community in my personal life that are against vaccinations or hesitant towards it, I want to have a mature, curious and inquisitive dialogue about why it is they think that way without needing to be against or for the perspective that they are sharing. Right now we have a situation where people are getting into fights, losing their career, breaking up their relationships, and losing long-standing cherished intimate friendships, and even getting publicly ridiculed and shamed because there is a basic disagreement with someone opposed to his/her environment about something like whether one should get a vaccination or not. To silence, intimidate or shame someone is not going to do anyone any good. It will create more conflict and division for all parties involved. That is not going to be solution to resolve the sometimes intense conflict that we're dealing with in this day and age. The only way we are going to resolve our conflict —Not appear to resolve our conflict by sweeping the voices of opposition under a rug— is by actually listening to each other perspectives, to have mature discussions about it, to bring the shadows into the light not by avoiding the conflict, but by bringing the conflict into the light and dealing with the conflict in a conscious and mature way. In other words: We are curious and genuinely open to what the other has to say, but we are not naïve as to take what they say on face value. We do ask critical questions, but we do so because we are curious and inquisitive, and we care more about the Truth than either to defend or to imbibe a certain narrative. Only if we are willing to at least be open that there is the possibility that the opposing party of what we tend to believe in may have at least some Truth to it, and that we are open enough to explore what that Truth may be, then we are going to come to a true resolution, to a true comradery; even despite our tendencies to lean towards one particular narrative or the other. And unfortunately, on this forum, a forum that has an image that it has the intentions to get each other to the highest Truth, this is currently not happening right now. And that's why I ask you, Leo, the moderators, but also other readers of this post, to revise your position on how you handle certain alternative narratives such as vaccination criticism.
  2. Refer to my signature . (for future readers: I may have changed this since then) Whatever decision you make is not essential. You'll notice that sometimes giving in to it feels right, and sometimes it doesn't. You notice sometimes that abstaining from the desire feels good to you, and sometimes it doesn't. Other times, you are very conflicted and it will be very unclear to you what to do or what not to do. Whatever you decide to do or not to do, see if you can see all of it, whether it's your confusion, your inner conflict, your desire and your corresponding action or lack thereof, see if you can notice all of this in a greater space of awareness. Notice the mind being confused about this. Notice yourself giving in to the desire. Notice yourself not giving into the desire. It doesn't really matter what you do. It matters how you relate to it. Addictions are fueled by the perpetual cycle of identifying with a desire and acting upon it, often by it being followed up by getting identified with the narrative that says it's bad and you shouldn't do it, which then results in a struggle of you trying to not give into it. If you can simply see that this perpetual cycle of identification with either desire or resistance is the root of addiction, you will be able to step out of it and then eventually you will be able to choose in freedom whether you engage with a desire or not. And there's absolutely no judgement in it. Even if you desire to smoke a pack of cigarettes, then go for it if you consciously choose to do so. Most likely if you keep on doing consciousness work the desire to smoke cigarettes will fall away by itself. But even if it doesn't... I heard for instance that a well-respected saint called Nisargadatta used to smoke cigarettes whilst he was giving a lecture, and because he realized that there was absolutely no shame in doing so and that it had nothing to do with consciousness itself, he was totally okay and owning up to the fact that he was doing that. And of course, I'm taking cigarettes as an example now, but the same with ice cream of course
  3. Hiya fellow actualizers! There is a certain matter that I'm struggling with a little bit right now, and instead of being the person giving the (often elaborate) advice or perspectives or whatever, I thought I'd humble myself and actually ask for some advice or perspectives myself. Because I know that from my own experience I don't always like to fully read through an elaborate and detailed post, I will include a summary version of what I mean at the bottom of this post. However, it would really help if you were to read the full post because then it will be much more clear to you what the situation is that I'm in and what perspectives or advice I would benefit from. Okay so here is the situation: There are certain vulnerabilities and attachments that I have of which I'm resisting the very fact that they're even there. One example is that I'm for whatever reason very afraid of (very) cold water. It's a vulnerability which I find difficult accept that's even there, as I would like to see myself as a person who is detached and 'invulnerable' enough that he cannot be deeply moved or touched by events on the phenomenal plane. Even though I would like to see myself as that, it is simply as of yet just not the case. I've had the desire for a while now to simply train myself in this area by taking showers that I would turn gradually colder over time (both in the longer term (weeks/months) as in the same shower session), but basically every time I think about doing this there is a kneejerk contraction response in my system (basically fight/flight/freeze) which I don't want to force myself through and do it anyway. I've done that before and doing it like that is pretty awful plus it doesn't really solve anything. Interestingly enough, there was one time a couple of months back where for whatever reason I was indeed taking a shower (starting off as a regular warm shower, mind you), and then I did gradually turn the temperature cooler and cooler and I was able to stay connected and present with myself without going into this fight or flight response, and this changed the whole quality of the experience of something I associated with something that was awful to something that just 'is'. I however haven't been able to find that same kind of response since then. What makes it even more difficult for me is if I imagine this: That if I just so happened to be in a situation where I was being held captive and those who were capturing me were threatening me to basically torture me by putting me in a cold shower or bath or whatever unless I were to do as they commanded, that I would be too frightened and I would budge and do as they would tell me even if those things they were telling me to do would be some horrible things, just because the alternative would seem even more terrifying. I would simply be a puppet being able to be easily controlled because of fear. I don't want that to happen which is why I have the tendency to resist the very fact that I have this vulnerability towards cold water. What doesn't make it easier for me is that I have a history with mental-emotional vulnerabilities in my life, and I've had three distinct phases or crisises which all of them were quite dark, with the last one in particular being very dark and painful. Something that I also noticed was present (or actually wasn't present) was the fact that I was much more sensitive and vulnerable to sensations like sounds, certain sights, certain smells, and also certain physical feelings. Those things could hit me much harder. As Shunyamurti would call it, my "emotional immune system" was down. Everything would hit much harder. So there's once again this fear that a dark phase like that could happen again where my EIS (emotional immune system) is down and that on top of that I would be in a situation where I would be forced to encounter circumstances where I would be forced to face the circumstances I would feel very vulnerable and sensitive towards, making it in my mind seem like some horrible ordeal which I need to prepare myself for, making it difficult for me to accept the fact that some vulnerabilities, particularly the one regarding cold water, are even here to begin with now that I'm otherwise relatively stable. You might argue with me that these fears are irrational, and they might indeed be to some extent, but what I do know from experience is that if there is a God, that he/she/it doesn't always provide a cushion for me to protect me from the very harsh and painful experiences of life. It simply isn't the case. I know that the depth of suffering I've experienced is theoretically possible once again in the future, and naturally there then is this fear and this need that I need to be prepared in case something like that would happen again, and that makes it very difficult to just let go and trust that life will take care of itself and I need not to worry about it. I've only known God or divinity to be with me at certain moments. You could argue that it is otherwise, but this is simply my experience so a theoretical argument or discussion about this isn't going to serve me. There have been prolonged moments where I have been able to stay much more connected to this 'ground of Being', and then indeed everything is good, there is trust and nothing needs to be prepared for or trained in (even though I could make such a choice out of freedom), and there have been prolonged moments where I have not been able to have that same connection and ability to let-go and connect to the Divine, no matter how much I tried. Then, with all of that being said, how can I really go about with all the experiences that I've had to just say to myself that I just need to 'let go and trust that life will take care of itself'? I simply haven't personally experienced that there are really these justifications to trust that all that will be will be taken care of without me not needing to have any anxiety about it. Of course, it's not helpful to be anxious about that, but I don't find myself having logical or sensible support for the quality that is Trust. That's why I feel the need to prepare for the worst, making me unnecessarily tense and hard towards the aspects of myself that aren't as strong as stable, because vulnerability is not seen as something valuable; quite the opposite. So: How do I trust and allow life to take care of itself, how can I start to embrace my vulnerabilities and attachments that I have, and how can I let go of this need to prepare and train myself most the time (not that I do that most of the time, but the feeling of need for it is there most of the time)? Really even more fundamentally: How do I love and accept all of myself fully? Even those parts that aren't strong and stable? Summary: Vulnerability is seen as something unwishable and unwantable. There is this need to prepare for the worst because I fear that if I don't, I would be totally overwhelmed and suffer deeply if I were to somehow be forced to face the things I am vulnerable in because I hadn't prepared. This makes it difficult for me to accept and embrace the fact that right now there are certain areas in my life that I am very vulnerable in and attached to. I have difficulty with the attitude 'just let go and trust that life will take care of itself', because I have no personal experience in life working out for me in that way. The basic questions I have are: How do I trust and let go? How do I let go of this need to prepare? How do I love and accept even the parts that are weak and vulnerable? Are there perspectives or advice that you guys would think would benefit me? I'd love to hear from ya
  4. Masculine compassion as opposed to feminine compassion can be fierce, bold, direct, uncompromising. It looks for what is needed as opposed to being loving and kind; something you would see with feminine compassion. For example: A man is dying and is in a hospital bed and everyone around that person is telling him that everything is going to be alright and that he will recover just to comfort him and make him feel better, whilst actually the Truth of the situation is being denied from him, and the truth is that he is dying, and everybody is too afraid to tell him that. If you allow and even support someone like that to stay in a state of denial you will greatly complicate and hinder the death process, making the whole ordeal for that person far more difficult than it needs to be if you just were to get the person to acknowledge and accept the fact hat he is dying. Feminine compassion on the other hand will just try to comfort and caress the other and try to make them feel good. But you can see that such behaviour will be inadequate and even counterproductive if that person is still in a state of denial and you are not guiding that person to come to face that fact. Masculine compassion on the other hand will simply point it out: "You're dying. Come to terms with it. Here's what you can do to accept and embrace the dying process, making it something wholesome instead of terrifying". THAT is masculine compassion. Another example of masculine compassion might be that when you're at a lecture or is giving a presentation and someone is speaking but this person is speaking rather quietly, that then you will be the one to make a comment and tell this person in front of the entire audience if that person can speak up a little bit, so that not only you can hear what this person is saying, but that also the rest of the audience can hear what is being said. You take into the consideration the need of the entire audience and therefore you consider it to be worth to put the person who is speaking on the spot and tell them what the situation requires so that the rest of the audience can benefit for this lecture that they otherwise may not have been able to hear which they have after all sacrificed time and energy for in order to be in that room. Masculine compassion also recognizes and acknowledges the needs and vulnerabilities and others, and therefore it would be most ideal if the speaker could be informed without putting this speaker on the spot for speaking too quietly in front of the entire audience, for example if you were to remind the speaker before he/she went on the stage to remind themselves of speaking loudly enough, but usually that's not really possible so it often has to be done in front of the entire audience as there is no other option, even though that's awkward and uncomfortable for the speaker. Another example of masculine compassion might be to defend your girlfriend from a bunch of thugs who are out to sexually assault her by punching them, risking to lose the fight and risk being badly injured, instead of turning and running away in cowardice from the situation. A good example of masculine compassion, or the divine masculine for that matter, would be Osho. I love that guy because he is so uncompromisingly and unapologetically direct and straightforward, sometimes to the point of being provocative, whilst at the same time you can see that he is really trying to help the other person and trying to give that person not necessarily what they want to hear, but what they need or what he thinks would help them. I would recommend to take a look at Q&A session with him as opposed to his regular talks to see what you would call masculine compassion, otherwise it's a bit less apparent. Also, with masculine compassion in general but certainly with Osho in particular, you will have to look a little bit behind the surface to see the purity of his intention. From the greater perspective there is no 'Masculine' or 'Feminine' compassion, actually. There's simply Compassion, taking masculine or feminine energetical expressions.
  5. You'd be spending hundreds of not thousands of hours of following his suggestions. Why? Because Leo almost always refers in his videos to other videos. Usually it's more than one. It goes like this: "If you want to understand what [insert subject] is, go watch my mini-series on [subject]. It is really important that you understand that first before you continue with this video. So go watch that first" And obviously, in that video or series he was referring to, there again will be some videos he says you should be watching, and then on THAT video once again there will be references to other videos, and so on. Thus if you actually were to fully follow Leo's advice you'd have to watch like half of all of the videos he made on his channel, before you strictly speaking would have gained the permission to continue watching the initial video you were trying to watch. Not to mention that he is also talking in his videos about you needing to do like "thousands of hours of contemplation", or journaling, or whatever, so if you actually were to do everything Leo told you to, you'd better buckle up because it's going to be a looooong ride The only way to really solve this problem is to start watching some of his really old videos because in those videos he won't have other older videos to refer to.
  6. If you deeply and thoroughly embody the Truth, then you also realize that there is nothing that needs to be defended. If you realize there's absolutely nothing that needs to be defended because the Truth IS, then you're totally unconcerned about whether you appear as a winner or loser in a debate, discussion, dialogue, whatever... Then your 'opponent' could be coming up with the greatest arguments, or the wittiest comebacks or the most intelligent debate techniques, but you simply don't mind because you don't care about being seen as right or not. Then you could allow yourself to be totally decimated by your opponent because you realize there's absolutely nothing at stake. In fact, as far as you're concerned, there is no opponent; there's only the inquiry for Truth. You will in fact listen to the other and be interested in what he/she has to say, and as far as you are concerned there is only a constructive and interesting dialogue to be had. Paradoxically, your total lack of defensiveness will unintentionally make you seem as the superior in the discussion. This would for instance a way to 'beat' Trump in a debate. In your mind, there's nobody to beat and nothing to win nor lose, but if you can totally stay unreactive in Trump's onslaught of social and emotional debate manipulations techniques, then you will appear as the one that is the winner of such a discussion, despite what you may or may not have said. You will then simply be totally unconcerned with anything he says or does. Trump's attachment to seem as the winner of a debate will then be his very downfall; It will then prove his vulnerability. Actually, if you're actually coming from a place of just pure interest and inquiry, then that dynamic of you being superior wouldn't even apply, because you're not even taking on an ego of being 'above it all'. Trump may or may not show that he's taken aback by your total lack of reactivity, he may be able to hold on to the mask of his image to the world tightly enough as to not show any weakness or vulnerability, and the stubborn, die-hard Trump supporters will not acknowledge any defeat as they are too attached and close-minded, but you will have earned the respect of those being able to see past the political polarities that many have attached themselves to, and they will be able to see the purity and quality of your Being. In fact, even if you show that some vulnerabilities within yourself get triggered, then if you're not going to try to hide it or compensate for it, you will still be able to show that you're not allowing yourself to get dragged down to play the same foolish game that Trump wants you to play and which he will almost always win in, and because you're able to hold that space of high integrity and Spirit, that also will still spark great respect from others. Went a little bit on a ramble here, haha. The point I'm trying to make here is... If you deeply know and embody the Truth, there will be nothing you need to defend. And because there is nothing to defend, there is no possibility of ever 'losing' a discussion. In fact, the whole matter of winning or losing a discussion doesn't apply.
  7. Yes, good reminder. I almost forgot about that one, haha.
  8. Many people think being 'selfish' is a no-no word. Something that's bad, something that's not spiritual. Also, people often think that being selfish means hurting others. It may happen that other people get triggered and thereby they basically hurt themselves, but that's not your fault as long as your intentions are pure and that your intention is not to hurt anyone. It is perfectly possible to be selfish yet being compassionate and at the very least be aware and caring towards the feelings of others. Sometimes, however, you will have to do certain things that others may not like but which ultimately is for the better. In reality, existence is an interplay of giving and taking/receiving. It's just that you make sure that when you take or receive you generally want to try to make it a win-win situation. Mind you, something being a win-win situation might not look like a win-win situation. For instance, if you're in a phase where you really want to develop a sense of autonomy where you want to listen to what feels right to you, where you want to protect your boundaries, and where you want to learn how to do what YOU want, you might for instance simply refuse to do certain tasks other people ask from you if this strains you too much or takes too much energy for you. What allows you to be able to justify that for yourself is to see how important it is for you to learn to really listen to yourself an protect yourself, and to see that what you're doing is for the greater good; especially if other people asking you to do certain things is just something they do habitually, but which wouldn't really hurt them if they did it themselves. Take my own example; it's maybe a bit extreme and I'm certainly not saying this is the ideal life or even the ideal outlook, but there are important lessons to be learned from this: I went through a phase where, living with my parents, I refused to listen to anything they told me I should do. I didn't clean up anything, I didn't want to study so I didn't, I didn't want to do any work; All I did was to really be in my room, read spiritual literature, to contemplate a lot and think about life, to entertain myself with Youtube video's and start getting some enjoyment in my life, and to do video gaming. Eventually I also decided not to eat with them at the dinner table anymore, because every time there was dinner there would be this tension between us and I could just sense the tension, and sometimes my parents would indeed start saying I should do certain things or I should change, which I really didn't want to do, so eventually I started to avoid them even there. All of this was to protect myself from the outside world and its demands and expectations. I wanted to shape and create a life that I wanted, that I saw fit, not what other people wanted me to do or become. I wanted to live towards the vision that I saw for myself. I understood that I was triggering people but I had not intention to harm anybody. In fact, the anger that people towards me was not because I was doing something to them, it is because I was not doing the things they wanted me to do. I failed their expectations but I wasn't actively trying to bother anyone. In fact, I wanted to keep things as much to myself as possible, to be as independent as possible. I understood that other people being triggered and angry wasn't necessarily my fault, but that this was a part of themselves that they were responsible for, not me. Whatever emotions are yours, you are responsible for them, not the other, and the same applied to them, I knew. But that also means you are responsible for the conflict and distress you will come to feel if others get triggered by you And all of this I understood was important because I was important. I don't mean that in some egoic comparative sense, that I am superior and better than others. That's not what I mean. I mean that I knew that there was great potential within me to be a great force of love, light and Goodness to the world, and that it was my time to cocoon, to form my shield and go through an inner transformation comparable to when a caterpillar becomes a cocoon to start forming a butterfly. A cocoon needs a strong protective shield and it needs to a certain degree hide from the world in order to fully focus on its transformation, to fully focus its energies on its inner journey. Too little people take full ownership over their lives. Too little people are willing to take the steering wheel and boat their ship, listening to their inner voice to go into the direction that that inner voice is telling them to go, even if the whole world including their social conditioning is telling them otherwise. I'm not saying that saying f*** it to the world and being as selfishly as possible is the ultimate solution. We do however grow impartially, so taking some years to really focus on yourself, to follow your intuition, your vision and your desires certainly isn't a bad thing. It's the growing of the roots. Learning how to set boundaries means you're creating a shield for your energetical space (your aura, you could say), and now that this aura is protected you have the chance to really work on it without constantly worrying about it being affected from interference from the outside world, which is distracting and disregulating you. Learning how to fend for yourself, how to protect your energetical space and following your intuition, gives you a great sense of grounding and confidence. You get to know who you are and what you want, and you start to become clear about what it is that serves you, and what it is that does not serve you, and you will be able to communicate this very clearly and directly to others. You know who you are and what you want, and therefore it is not difficult and therefore it is not difficult to say NO to someone or something if you know that that is not going to serve you in the greater good. Mind you, there is mature selfishness and immature selfishness. Be very conscious about that distinction here. Immature selfishness means you're blaming others for your own situation, feelings and shortcomings. You do not take responsibility and as far as you are concerned the whole world is at fault except yourself. Mature selfishness sees that these things are your responsibility, and that you are responsible for solving them, and that you're willing to set boundaries to first close off interference from the outside world and then correct these situations, feelings and shortcomings by taking responsibility for them and working with them. Immature selfishness refuses to do certain things for others because one feels offended by someone else trying to burden them with something, and refuses to cooperate out of anger, hatred or bitterness. It is much more like a middle-finger approach. Mature selfishness may also refuse to cooperate or agree with requests or demands, but here one does not refuse to do such things out of anger or bitterness, but because one is conscious that one wants to utilize their time, energy and resources for things that one sees to be more valuable at that point for their psychological, energetical or spiritual development. One has a vision for themselves which is a top priority, and many things that are not in alignment with that vision have to be left aside, at least for the time being. On top of that, things that are being asked or demanded from the outside world may also simply be experienced as very stressful, draining or demanding and here one realizes that doing things from this negative place is ultimately not going to do anyone any good, not in the big picture at least. In a nutshell, immature selfishness is about blame and bitterness, mature selfishness is about self-protection, ownership and authenticity To come in better contact with this capacity of self-governance or ownership of your life, just start asking yourself questions as to why it is or as to why it could be important. What purpose does selfishness fulfill? What does it give me? What does it allow me to do? What do I sacrifice for not protecting my own boundaries? How, in the big picture, can me being selfish also serve others in the long-term or even short-term? (Very important question!) How can me developing these qualities ultimately serve the greater good? (because it certainly can and does). Contemplate these questions, and really go deeply into it. Then you will start to see that there is much more depth and validity to selfishness than you would have previously imagined. Also, if you're maybe afraid to make changes to take more ownership over the direction of your life, ask yourself these questions: What am I willing to make sacrifices for? If I don't take certain risks or make certain sacrifices, is the life I will have then going to be worth it? Is the bad really going to outweigh the good that could come from this? If you have any more personal questions or comments, you are free to send me a private message
  9. This. It's funny because I used to take wanting to be honest, authentic and direct to the extreme, to the extent that I really started to lack in social adaptability. For instance, I used to and still do to some extent find it really difficult to just say "good" or "fine" when someone asked how I was doing, when I was not doing good. Even if I was doing neutral and not particularly bad, saying "good" or "fine" didn't seem honest to me, so I actually didn't say it. And rarely does it happen that I actually am doing totally fine. I still have that tendency when someone asks me that question to ask myself that question and start contemplating on the question as to how I am really doing , instead of just saying "fine", coming across as strange because I just want to be honest and sincere, not giving the socially acceptable answer. I've learned that it is okay in some situations to just give an answer that may not be closest to the Truth, but which is easier to get around with. For instance: some weeks ago I had a not-super-important group video call which I have on a weekly basis which I really didn't want to attend because I really didn't feel so good at that moment due to energetical complications and a bunch of shadow material coming up, and I had a lot of resistance to attend the group call so I didn't, and next time I saw these people in the next group call, instead of giving an elaborate explanation of the workings of my mind, emotions, energies and all of its many facets and how this had lead to me not wanting to attend that previous meeting, I just said I forgot it, and it was done with that. I actually now have to learn that sometimes it's okay to be a little bit insincere in order to make life a bit easier for myself if the thing I'm not completely honest about doesn't have great consequences for others or for the embodiment of my integrity. Lying and being dishonest makes life easier sometimes, and I used to put myself in lots of stress at times because I was so attached to me wanting to be so damn honest all the time. I still am very capable of being honest and direct if I think it's better for the whole. It's one of the qualities I have, that I just say things like they are or how I see them and not being particularly afraid to offend or upset someone. I am however still very aware of what effect that which I say can have, and of the social dynamics that are at play
  10. I haven't watched the video, but you make it sound like it's final, like you've crossed some spiritual finish line. I don't think it works like that. Many people think it works like that, but I don't. I see life as something that is always evolving, and I'm not going to pin myself down on some 'finish line' notion. I do think however there can be great spiritual insights or awakenings that can be life transforming, but I don't think any of it is 'final'. I'm open to the idea that I could be wrong, but I think that's quite unlikely. I guess I got this idea largely from Adyashanti. He never allows anyone to settle for a 'finish line' fantasy. It does make sense to me. Don't think you're done. There's always more work to do.
  11. I actually would like to believe you're right. I've been following Shunyamurti for some time and I throughout a very dark period I encountered in the summer of 2020 his apocalyptical prophecies weren't particularly helpful in order to ease my anxiety and the distress I was in; Quite the contrary... I used to find it very difficult to detach from the his viewpoint even though I could intellectually discern that what he was saying was simply a perspective which he may have been wrong about. Fortunately over the past number of months I've found myself being able to get more distance from this anxiety that he provoked about us being in the 'end of times' when he was talking about it, being more open to the fact that this is simply a perspective and not all spiritual teachers align with his ideas. I still listen to his teachings. I enjoy listening to him from time to time. But some things that he is saying I'm taking with a grain of salt now, not allowing myself to be emotionally dragged along by it.
  12. I wonder how you, or him, or me, or any of us would know for sure about whether something like that is or isn't true, though.
  13. Good question. It's a bit of a tricky one too to really answer this one properly in terms that are not too confusing. I could go down the rabbit hole of my own mind trying to formulate a really concise and proper answer to this, but for now I don't have the energy to do that so I won't. I'll keep it (for my standards) relatively short. Just talking off-the-cuff, my feeling is that these moments of grace are indeed indicative of the presence of God in that moment (or however you want to call it), but that despite of that you may still be quite identified with your feelings, and this Grace is much more something that happens to you rather than something you are able to carry throughout your day. The question is: are you still able to maintain this sense of wonder, peace and perhaps even joy when you're encountering negative thoughts or feelings? Are you able to absorb those feelings and thoughts into a greater sense of Being and peacefulness? If these moments happen to you, it's not freedom, because it's not permanent. Are you able to find a sense of peace and happiness that is much more constant and ever-present? Adyashanti calls it "the always and already". If you can connect with that dimension of reality, you don't have to wait for Grace and Joy to come along by moments and occasions of Grace, because you've already found how to connect with it under most if not any circumstances. Honestly, I find it hard to distinguish between 'true' and 'false' happiness. Happiness is happiness. The question is just: Do you seek happiness in the realm of impermanence, where every attempt to make the impermanent permanent will inevitable fail, or will you seek it at its source, where paradoxically it will only truly come and stay if you've let go of your attachment of you needing it to be there? But that kind of happiness has a different quality to it because at its root it is not dependent upon anything externally, or even the state of your mind, feelings or body (though it is harder to stay connected with that domain if there's a lot of survival pressure. Think about staying peaceful and calm whilst a dentist is drilling in your teeth)
  14. Hello. For those few of you who may be unaware, when I say 'stage blue, stage yellow, stage turquoise' and such, I am referring to the spiral dynamics model which is commonly used on this forum. Search for it on Google if you're not aware what it is (or watch Leo's video's about it on his own Youtube channel) I think 2/3 years ago I still used to consider people who adhere to the Christian religious tradition would automatically adhere as people who were less conscious, more dogmatic and more close-minded. Experience has proven to me that this certainly doesn't always have to be the case. I currently have a spiritual counselor with whom I have a very good relationship with, and I never asked him but I think from what I have seen on his website he considers himself to be a Christian. I have certainly seen that he is interested in Christian teaching and the study of the Bible and psalm-reading. I can say that from looking at his website. At the same time though, he is openly gay, he is an incredibly good listener and a very compassionate and understanding man, and he never tries to enforce any sort of knowledge or doctrine onto me. He goes along with my experience and whenever he does give suggestions I can tell it's not because of something he's read but because of personal experience and insight. I've never asked him but I'm 99% sure he doesn't believe in such a notion as the heaven and hell as Christians usually portray it. He takes Christianity as a certain system that can help him bring closer to God, discarding the dogma and embracing the higher teachings that are also contained within it. Another example: There is a guy whom I have read a book from and this person's name is Erwin McManus. I have found this book to be incredibly inspiring and deep and from there on I have also gone to check out his YouTube channel. This guy is a pastor with his own church In Los Angeles, but he is unlike anything you would except from a pastor. He is modern, incredibly open-minded. He speaks in an electric, magnetic way. He is courageous, willing to question anything. Very surprisingly, I've heard him say that many of the people that are interested in his work and even come to his church consider themselves to be atheists. Yet, he is Christian and he talks quite a bit about 'following in the image of Jesus Christ' or 'accepting Christ into your heart'. And I must admit, I cringe a little bit when he says something like that, yet I understand on an intellectual level that he does not say that because he is dogmatic about it, but because Christianity and the teachings of Jesus have come to be a big inspiration to him. He doesn't speak of it because he has been conditioned that way. Also, he is also somewhat of an entrepreneur and a businessman. I'll link you a video to a very inspiring interview with him and Ed Mylett. Ultimately the give-away message with this topic is that you don't want to come to judge a person based on a certain faith or tradition that he/she adheres to, but that you want to see behind that labels and exterior and that you want to have a look at how this person actually relates to his/her faith or tradition without recourse to certain preconceived ideas you have about that, thereby potentially missing the depth and relationship that a person may actually have with this faith or tradition. Same thing by the way with science; Just as there are people who interact with religion from a stage yellow/turquoise perspective, so are there people who are deeply passionate about science but who do so from a stage yellow/turquoise standpoint. Just don't judge too quickly to say that someone is in 'stage blue' because that person has a great interest in a certain religion, and don't say someone is merely in 'stage orange' because this person has a deep passion and commitment to science, and so forth. That's just a warning I wanted to give.
  15. Sup