rideforever

Heaven : Illusions : Rapid Advancement

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It seems to me that for many people they live this world with little learnt, and so if they arrive in another world why would it be different that this one?  Even if you ascend to something higher it is likely to not be much higher at all, possibly even lower.   Going somewhere higher you would thrown in jail for being insane.   You are were you deserve to be.

 

So ... just a little spirituality, might not be of that much use.   

 

Better to try and really progress and not waste time.

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57 minutes ago, rideforever said:

So ... just a little spirituality, might not be of that much use.   

 

Better to try and really progress and not waste time.

I think it is good to have a solid spiritual practice.  My so called "practice" involves a couple hours meditation, both sitting and walking, physical exercise, MA, and the like. almost no reading these days, because I have found so little that resonates for me as having any value.  I am sure that there are some good old manuscripts out there,  but one still has to be careful of how the translator did his/her job.  

 

I have a bit of a different take on spirituality.  in short to quote the Doctor Strange movie, "It's not about me, it's never been about me".  I have seen so many religious or spiritual people who practice in order to get "saved", go to heaven,  or get a good reincarnation, and so on.  Many do religion or spiritual things to keep from going to hell, or getting a bad rebirth,  depending on ones belief.  

I once read a passage in Jewish mysticism (kabbalah) that talks about the perfect sacrifice, which is to sacrifice yourself, or do something good and noble without any chance of reward.  to do something good for only the sake of being a good person.  For me, spirituality is not about some here after or rebirth.  It is about doing something good, kind, loving right here.  

Not suggesting that I am at this point in my development yet, as I still do practices for my own development,  to be honest, but i am a work in progress,  and living a natural, good life without grasping is slowly sinking in.  

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6 minutes ago, rideforever said:

I am still trying to find a good mix of physical regimens ?

for one thing, in my experience that depends a lot on your personality, body type etc.  I lift weights twice a week, do sprint interval work doing 50 yard dashes twice a week.  walk our hills in our valley a few days a week, (about 3 mile walk),  do Pencak silat a couple of hours a week, and that is about it. lastly, I take ice cold showers in order to work on focus, relaxation and breath control, but one has to kind of work up to that.

So I would suggest playing with things you are interested in,  something that gives you energy, and feels right.  it could be yoga, dance, tai chi,  or just about anything that fits you.  good luck

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1 hour ago, Zen Pig said:

I think it is good to have a solid spiritual practice.  My so called "practice" involves a couple hours meditation, both sitting and walking, physical exercise, MA, and the like. almost no reading these days, because I have found so little that resonates for me as having any value.  I am sure that there are some good old manuscripts out there,  but one still has to be careful of how the translator did his/her job.  

 

I have a bit of a different take on spirituality.  in short to quote the Doctor Strange movie, "It's not about me, it's never been about me".  I have seen so many religious or spiritual people who practice in order to get "saved", go to heaven,  or get a good reincarnation, and so on.  Many do religion or spiritual things to keep from going to hell, or getting a bad rebirth,  depending on ones belief.  

I once read a passage in Jewish mysticism (kabbalah) that talks about the perfect sacrifice, which is to sacrifice yourself, or do something good and noble without any chance of reward.  to do something good for only the sake of being a good person.  For me, spirituality is not about some here after or rebirth.  It is about doing something good, kind, loving right here.  

Not suggesting that I am at this point in my development yet, as I still do practices for my own development,  to be honest, but i am a work in progress,  and living a natural, good life without grasping is slowly sinking in.  

 

I think what you are describing, and what is being alluded to in the Kabbalah, is what is being recommended in the Mahayana tradition - the cultivation of bodhicitta. A slightly different perspective is that it is important that we first liberate ourselves before we can effectively help others. Otherwise, our own pain and confusion interferes with our ability to understand and provide what others need.

 

Another good source on this topic is Anthony Demello. He offers some cautionary advice on generosity. It is easy to think too highly of ourselves for our charitable acts. Demello divides them into 3 categories and points out that nearly all charitable acts are fundamentally selfish.

1. Giving ourselves the pleasure of pleasing ourselves - mundane selfishness

2. Giving ourselves the pleasure of pleasing others - a bit more sophisticated but selfish nonetheless

3. Helping others to avoid a negative feeling about ourselves - the worst motivation in Demello's opinion

 

I'm with you on the reading. There isn't much out there that captures my interest in terms of spiritual reading. There are a few exceptions - the books by my personal teacher, books by Demello, and spiritual poetry.

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20 hours ago, steve said:

cautionary advice on generosity.

 

I think there’s a juicy discussion in this.

 

I got Eva Wong’s translation of the Seven Taoist Masters for Christmas... and the very first pragraph starts with:

 

‚ÄĚCharitable deeds are not meant to be a public performance. If you display compassion in order to show others your virtue, then your actions are empty of meaning. No matter how much money you give to the poor, if you are doing it to impress others, it is not charity.‚ÄĚ

 

This sentiment is often a topic of discussion amongst two of my teachers. In fact one of them goes a little further.

 

Hernia teacher recommends doing selfless service... but to do it in such a way that is:

1) not easy, enjoyable or pleasurable and

2) not to generate any gratitude from anyone (including the recepient of the charitable act).

 

It’s surprisingly hard to do actually.

 

The teacher goes on to say that in fact, for a spiritual aspirant, doing a charitable act without those two points is far worse than doing nothing.

 

This normally raises some eyebrows.

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4 hours ago, freeform said:

Hernia teacher recommends doing selfless service...

 

:lol:

 

The joys of autocorrect!

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3 hours ago, Taoist Texts said:

for what end?

 

To set up the correct qualities of Mind for spiritual practice. There’s a shen level mechanic to it.

 

Only really needed for spiritual practice... (cultivating Yuan Shen¬†- not new age ‚Äėspirituality‚Äô)

 

Humour, Humility and ‚Äėnot taking things seriously‚Äô is suitable for everyone though - particularly the ‚Äėphilosophical Daoists‚Äô.

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12 minutes ago, freeform said:

There’s a shen level mechanic to it.

and how does it work exactly? say, you give to charity, what wheels that puts in the motion?

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2 hours ago, Taoist Texts said:

and how does it work exactly? say, you give to charity, what wheels that puts in the motion?

No wheels, no karma, no nothing.

Someone hungry gets a meal.  Or someone down on his luck gets a hand up.  Thats all, and thats enough, for me.  There's need, I can help, I'm human they're human seems like a natural choice.  Made harder because there is so much need and in truth, giving is fighting my worst instincts of selfishness and hoarding.

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2 hours ago, Taoist Texts said:

and how does it work exactly? say, you give to charity, what wheels that puts in the motion?

 

Actually, giving money to charity doesn’t really fulfill the two points I mentioned above. It’s easy, enjoyable and the charity will shower praise on you.

 

An anonymous donation comes closer, but it’s still easy and pleasant.

 

I volunteered for a while in a needle exchange and homeless kitchen. Although there was some praise, I also got spat on and almost stabbed. Getting better! :lol:

 

A friend once talked someone off a bridge by asking what his kids are going to eat for dinner tonight. But then she told her friends - so not ideal yet again.

 

Its pretty tricky actually!

 

Now regarding how it works - I don’t know. There are cause and effect relationships that change the quality of mind, but I don’t understand the mechanics behind that. Beyond my pay grade :)

 

Maybe you know from your study of the scriptures?

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8 hours ago, thelerner said:

No wheels, no karma, no nothing.

 

exactly

8 hours ago, freeform said:

To set up the correct qualities of Mind for spiritual practice. There’s a shen level mechanic to it.

 

Only really needed for spiritual practice... (cultivating Yuan Shen¬†- not new age ‚Äėspirituality‚Äô)

 

Now regarding how it works - I don’t know. There are cause and effect relationships that change the quality of mind, but I don’t understand the mechanics behind that. Beyond my pay grade :)

 

Maybe you know from your study of the scriptures?

of course i do. charity is useless for purposes of the practice

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On 12/26/2018 at 7:31 AM, Zen Pig said:

I once read a passage in Jewish mysticism (kabbalah) that talks about the perfect sacrifice, which is to sacrifice yourself, or do something good and noble without any chance of reward.  to do something good for only the sake of being a good person.  For me, spirituality is not about some here after or rebirth.  It is about doing something good, kind, loving right here. 

Right, true in regular old Judaism too.  Levels of giving where doing it anonymously to an anonymous person is the highest, then anonymously to a known person..etc.,  it goes on in degrees from there, but to me an important commentary was that in this world there is so much need, that even the lowest form of giving, taking accolades, showing off, is still good. 

 

Cause the bottom line is its helping someone in need and thats worth playing to an ego.   Not ideal, but in the present world, good enough.  Maybe with time, they'll get a taste for it and learn to give 'selflessly', but in the meantime, the main goal of charity is helping the needy, overrides spiritual 'points' of the giver.

 

which reminds me, I think giving a person a job was higher then anonymous giving and receiving. 

 

 

Addon> looking back at the OP, mentioning another world after death, I'm reminded of a Jewish saying..  it was.. if you can't learn to appreciate the Sabbath, a day sitting around with friends, talking, eating, resting, no money, no work, no tech or machines- if you can't appreciate that, then how are you going to appreciate heaven? 

 

ie an example of how it may not be about gaining strange esoteric knowledge, but that if there's a nice after life given freely, then the person who knows how to lay back and take it easy wins.  who knows..

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I think listening to one's own heart is a good idea when it comes to giving.  There truly is a voice in there.

 

I like something that Eckhart Tolle has to say; that those who operate on the high frequencies are 'frequency bearers', which is a gift to mankind in general.  Some frequency bearers go on to do great things because of the heights they reach, some go into monasteries or something similar; and some just plain drop out of life because the old society structure no longer suits them.  In any event, it's all good.  The frequency remains intact regardless of where we are or what we're doing.

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6 hours ago, thelerner said:

I'm reminded of a Jewish saying..  it was.. if you can't learn to appreciate the Sabbath, a day sitting around with friends, talking, eating, resting, no money, no work, no tech or machines- if you can't appreciate that, then how are you going to appreciate heaven? 

oh, i like this quote.  I was just considering something like this the other day. we live in the hills of northern Colorado.  don't have regular tv,  or lots of modern entertainment,  and once a week we just kind of sit around , eat a little left overs,  and it would probably bore some folks to death.  might read a book, take a nap, or a walk.... that kind of thing.  then I saw that we were all, on that day living naturally, kind of like what many people are after when they meditate, to live in the '"moment".  sometimes the best gifts are those right in front of us that have always been free for the taking.

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7 hours ago, thelerner said:

to me an important commentary was that in this world there is so much need, that even the lowest form of giving, taking accolades, showing off, is still good

 

I disagree with this bit.

 

Of course kindness is good.

 

But there is a point where this sort of charity actually flips and creates more harm than good...

 

Like for example Tom’s shoes... when you buy a pair of shoes they send a free pair to poverty stricken countries - this is (or was at least) their major selling point.

 

The unintended consequence was that they put local shoemakers out of business - their lievlihood gone they couldn’t educate or feed their kids and so the spiral of poverty continues.

 

Thats one example. Another was when agricultural ‚Äúcharities‚ÄĚ moved in on the country of my birth. They put lots of money into modernising the local agriculture, where they still used techniques that were hundreds of years old.

 

But the consequence was that they got the farmers hooked on fertilisers, special seeds, equipment, herbicides etc. And although the first taster was for free afterwards they had to pay... many people lost their farms and the quality of food went down considerably. (I believe that this was a market creation exercise, but it was sold as charity... but that’s besides the point)

 

Cause and effect can be very complicated and there are many unintended consequences to our actions... these are good reasons for following the guidelines of the ancients - they learned to navigate cause and effect in a very elegant way. That’s why it’s wisdom - not cleverness :)

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These are all very good points of unintended consequences, and I personally feel that do-goodering is not very good, neither is the kind of masochistic "help without anyone knowing".   These are both straying off the path.

 

Life to live needs to pay a price you see.   That's why nothing will ever be comfortable.   Unless you are comfortable paying the price, you might feel worried about working hard but if you get in the groove suddenly you find yourself flying, you feel string, you feel like you contribute.

 

So giving things to people .... does not help them get into a groove.   Money just doesn't work.   Although this world is so imperfect you have to consider each situation on its merits.

 

Yesterday I was thinking about "feelings".   And human feelings are imo a disaster, they are up and down and down and up.   I just can't make them work.   They are insane and painful, it just never stays in one place.   So I was thinking that I prefer the idea of "alignment" with .... the source ? life ? energy ?   That I can do, maybe.   Just keep in that stream.   But I can't live anymore trying to "feel good" or anything else like that, I feel it's very untrustworthy.

 

Also on vegetarianism, vegetables also don't want to be eaten you know so .... this is an opportunity to think from a higher level.  You cant say I am a vegetarian because I am nice, well the cabbages don't think so, they hate you.   But what you can say is that .... for whatever I take, I pay it back.   Then that can work, and you don't go in to debt.   Then what you are saying is that I shall endeavour to use my gifts for good.

 

The first thing God gave you was yourself.   So make yourself a good one, that comes first, and that's the main job.   So actually people who are happy with their lives are doing a good job.   Those who are suffering badly and giving to charity, are perhaps misunderstanding something.   Hopefully it is learning and we all get somewhere.

 

 

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1 hour ago, rideforever said:

masochistic "help without anyone knowing".   These are both straying off the path.

 

Straying off which path? 

 

I think selfless service is obviously part of a number of the great spiritual paths.

 

The masochistic thing - yeah not that bit :lol: I think the reason that service shouldn’t be easy and enjoyable is because it has less of a chance to feed your ego. And I think you’re right, if you contrive your service into a masochistic martyrdom then this is bound to feed your ego too.

 

Basic human kindness is for everyone. Being kind should be a given whatever path you’re on. I’m not saying you should start over analysing before you help someone in need...

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Jesus said that when the bridegroom is with you you should celebrate, spend money, pour perfume, dance sing feast.   And that the poor would always be with you.  And that poverty is being poor in spirit.

 

First be kind to yourself and your life.   Don't shave your hair off.

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7 hours ago, rideforever said:

These are all very good points of unintended consequences, and I personally feel that do-goodering is not very good, neither is the kind of masochistic "help without anyone knowing".   These are both straying off the path.

 

Well,... if that works for you, then good luck, hope it all works out.  I help folks who god puts in front of me, so to speak, and I am not always good at it,  and I don't do it because it makes me feel good. it is a pain in the ass at times.  but that is my path. to each there own.

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10 minutes ago, Zen Pig said:

Well,... if that works for you, then good luck, hope it all works out.  I help folks who god puts in front of me, so to speak, and I am not always good at it,  and I don't do it because it makes me feel good. it is a pain in the ass at times.  but that is my path. to each there own.

 

When someone says "if that works for you" ... maybe it's not 100% sincere.

And what's wrong with feeling good when you help someone ?
I think mankind has become very confused about things.

If it's a pain in the ass maybe you are doing it wrong; and does it help others if you hate what you are doing ?
We have to return to seeing being happy as our goal, and not "helping" each other in a dependent way.   If your cup spilleth over then you have some to share (after your cup is full of course) and that's just natural.  

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4 hours ago, rideforever said:

When someone says "if that works for you" ... maybe it's not 100% sincere.

Well, if you knew me,  and I thought you were full of shit, and wrong, i would tell you that you were full of shit.  But folks do what they believe. I do to.  So yes, if it works for you good. 

 

4 hours ago, rideforever said:

If it's a pain in the ass maybe you are doing it wrong; and does it help others if you hate what you are doing ?

now you are being full of shit.  I did not say that I hated what i was doing. just that sometimes it is a pain to help others.  But For me , it is something I need to do.  don't read into my post what I did not say.  How's that?  LOL.  

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On 12/28/2018 at 5:43 AM, freeform said:

 

 

But there is a point where this sort of charity actually flips and creates more harm than good...

 

Like for example Tom’s shoes... when you buy a pair of shoes they send a free pair to poverty stricken countries - this is (or was at least) their major selling point.

 

The unintended consequence was that they put local shoemakers out of business - their lievlihood gone they couldn’t educate or feed their kids and so the spiral of poverty continues.

 

Cause and effect can be very complicated and there are many unintended consequences to our actions... these are good reasons for following the guidelines of the ancients - they learned to navigate cause and effect in a very elegant way. That’s why it’s wisdom - not cleverness :)

Well lets not confuse charity with cons, marketing manipulation or bad ideas.  Course even without ill intent unintended consequences are a bitch.  Things have to be thought out, local input is imperative.  Many a good idea has led to disaster.  Ask any parent. 

 

Even with those things, the world and its people can use a little help at times.  If people pick a charity, research it, and give steadily, it can make a difference, as can most of our actions of simple kindnesses. 

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