Thursday, June 11, 2009

Dream Interpretation

Everyone dreams. It is a regular occurrence. Several times each evening you go through a series of sleep cycles and you dream. Many people get into the interpretation of the dream - what does this mean? What does that symbolize? And there is certainly nothing wrong with that and many insights may be had from the process.

But what if there is another even greater purpose of the dream? What if the main purpose of the night time dream is to show you that you can have what appears to be an entirely concrete reality - you can live in that reality, experience all kinds of things in that reality, and that everything in that reality is, in fact, not reality at all. It's a dream. Even, you, the dreamer disappear from that dream when you wake up! What if the purpose of the dream, more than figuring out ways to make our daytime better, are, rather, to show us that the daytime drama is nothing but another dream, and that we can awaken from that dream as well?

During the evening dream, you are entirely convinced that it is real. These things are factually happening. You don't question it, no matter how bizarre the incidents in the dream are. Then, you wake up snug in your bed and go, "Oh, THAT was just a dream. Now I'm back in the real world!" And then we spend every moment ignoring the lesson of the dream that, this too, is just another dream.

Most people, at least those that would be reading this, have heard the story of the old monk who wakes up and says, "I was just dreaming I was a butterfly. But now, I'm not sure if I am a monk thinking he had a dream of being a butterfly, or if I am a butterfly dreaming that I am now a monk." We immediately assume that the night dream is unreal and the daytime one is real. Even if we theoretically 'understand' that they might both be dreams, we act on a different level - that the night dream is unreal but the day dream is real.

Numerous scriptures and saints have pointed out that the only difference between the night dream and the day dream is time (i.e. 8 hours versus 16 hours). Right now, as you are reading this, you could suddenly WAKE UP in your bed and go, "Oh, I was just dreaming I was reading a blog by somebody named Aja (the 'Unborn'). Ha Ha. There's nobody named Aja, but that was interesting. Now let me get on with my REAL life." And then you wake up from that one too.

The Yoga Vasistha is a wonderful book wherein you have characters living in dreams within dream within dreams - awakening from one into the other and totally unsure which if any are real. Many Buddhists practice asking themselves, "Is this a dream?" during the day, in order to help facilitate lucid dreaming at night, so that they might have more time to practice their meditations (yes, while they are "asleep and dreaming"). Buddhists often call this whole shebang the dream of Buddha. The Bhagavatam calls this the dream of Vishnu. And yet, every night the Guru of Dreaming shows us that what appears to be real is, in fact, a dream, and every morning we awaken, ignore the instruction, and go on acting as if the daydream is some type of all important concrete reality!

Hmmm... I guess we're just slow learners, eh?!

"Wake Up, Neo.....

The Matrix has got you!"

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Friday, June 05, 2009

The Magazine

My wife holds out a buddist magazine.
"Here is a Buddhist magazine. Would you like to read it?"

With some hesitation, if not outright trepidation, I take it.
"Thanks."

I'm hesitatant, not because I'm not Buddhist, but because I know where this goes. I am not patient. I am not compassionate. I am leery. I glance through the table of contents. Just as I suspect - a lot of articles that seem more aligned to making people feel good, than to get them to dump all the crap in their minds.

We are all the same. We would rather talk about surrender than to actually surrender. We would rather read about someone who has 'made' it, than to 'make' it ourselves. We'd rather study the intricacies of the teachings than to put them into practice. We would rather argue about (or even agree about) the variations of the Great Teachings than to whole-heartedly give ourselves to them. Or we might want to keep struggling to find the perfect teaching, just a little better, a little closer, than to recognize the Infinite, Absolute and totally Ordinary Divinity of NOW.

Virtually every thought is a distraction, unless it points dead-on at the Truth. Every idea is a diversion unless it is showing you your Own Face. Every teaching is a pile of crap unless it makes you go..."Ah, Ah, Ah" as you dive into the immediacy of the Divine.

There is ONE infinite Ocean. What you experience as you is but the water of one wave. You fret and strut as the one wave - paying attention to the shape and form and floaters in yours and the others waves, ever neglecting the immediacy of the waterness, which ultimately leads to the immediacy of ALL waterness.

There is ONLY GOD, the ONE, the Absolute. Yes, all argumentation, all thinking, all concepts are also That, but in looking at them, we run the risk of identifying with them and lose our identification with the REAL-ness of the Divine.

The mind is like a prism which breaks up the light of the ONE, and turns it into the colors of the many. The colors are just the one, but we pick and choose between them. The prism, the mind, will NEVER, put the colors back into the ONE. It, sadly, only breaks them apart. Let go of the mind. Smash the prism. Rest in the ONE.

Sarvam khalvidam Brahma - All This is indeed the Absolute

Vasudevah Sarvam - All is God

Om Purnam adah purnam idam - That is the Wholeness, This is the Wholeness

Only God IS. There is nothing else. Every moment IS GOD.

Rest in that and forget the rest.... especially this magazine...

So, in the end, having glanced through a number of self-aggrandizing and self-effacing articles (amidst one or two okay ones) I turn to the back cover....

It reads:

"Is Your Investment Strategy Sustainable?"

Oh good Lord!!!!!

God is the only investment strategy I have.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Utter Simplicity

I am guilty. Guilty of the Sin of complication. We all are, cuz that's what our minds tend to make us do...Complicate things.

Here is the simple answer to everything:

1. Love what you have,
2. Love who you're with,
3. Love God.

Not necessarily in that order.