Cultivating the Empty Field with Vasily
I guess I’m in this funky part of the path that is continually messing with my sense of control and making me want to “quit” or just pray to the universe to help me, or just to go to the gompa and do 75 prostrations, something physically exhausting, something magickal, some transfer of pain to the physical so that it will leave my heart and mind alone, leave me the fuck alone, some extreme surrender, some desire to be saved through absorption into the Other, some refuge that I have to find somewhere, someone or something! So I’ve extreme aversion to all this suffering that now consists solely of “not being able to get enlightened” so as to end this Suffering!
I definitely have had similar feelings myself, and the answer I came up with that seems to be useful, is that our mind is trying to do literally everything except just being here. Like isn’t it strange how that seems rather difficult? To just really really be here 100% with reality and allow it to be 100% itself, and wanting to pray, or chant, or retreat, or go do x or y or z, all seem ways of our mind reassuring the illusion of self continues to exist through the idea of struggle. It isn’t any fun for our idea of self to just slowly fade away into a peaceful, absolutely stillness, it wants STRUGGLE and ADVERSITY to make sure that it is known. Adyashanti talks about this and it sounds like a trap. A trap I continually find myself in.
Bill said to me, “You know, Jenny, here is what it is to get fourth path: You have to be willing to die.”
So maybe what he said about you dying potentially relates to the notion I mentioned above. When you are really honest with yourself, does 100% of you really want no cosmic drama? no struggle? I believe if that were true, then there would be no struggle. It would just dissipate. Snow melting.
Jenny, do you remember when I was talking to you about cultivating the empty field? And I said that they were instructions. The willingness to die is also an instruction. There is no complex meaning. I don’t think there is anything complex about any of this: Struggle is complex; reality itself is simple, clean, clear.
So be honest with yourself, and ask the tough questions.
Don’t overcomplicate anything. Like you mentioned in another post, mango smoothies. It’s that simple. Enlightenment is just drinking mango smoothies. How could it be anything else?
The honesty is important. There are many people I meet, including myself, who hear advice, and go “yeah yeah yeah, but I will go do this instead.” Then thet come back and say, “it didn’t work when I didn’t do it.”
So cast off body and mind. Chill out. There’s no problem. Don’t make a problem. Things are simple. No problem.
Buddha nature, and mu, and form and emptiness, enlightenment, magick, enlightenment, cool. All those things are only as important as drinking a mango smoothie. But are you allowing that truth to surface? If you aren’t that’s fine, that’s still part of it. So where is the problem? Phantoms implying other phantoms. No problem.
I know that may all seem strange, but I wrote it with you in mind, so I hope that something past the words (which may make little sense) is communicated. ♥ Feel free to call me out if it seems like I am on a zen high horse. I’m trying really not to do that. It just seems like an interesting perspective to balance out complexity.
Vasily, no, of course you are right. And I’m reading about mahamudra, so I do know better. I’m very frustrated tonight. I think I’m heading into Reobservation, and I was thinking similar thoughts while brushing my teeth: “Well, okay, my sit went nowhere grand tonight after 1.5 hours, I was thoroughly intimidated and disheartened by Daniel over the weekend (not that he meant to have that effect at all), I’m probably heading into Reobservation—but what if I just let those things all be how they are since, after all, soon enough things will change again.”
Bill’s words have been resonating heavy-duty. And Jim’s words about how this total disenchantment has to happen. And I saw something by Nick along the same lines—about how you have to “give up.”
I was bound to hit rocky territory eventually. It is time.
I went for a hot stone massage today. I enjoyed lunch with my son. I’m lately happier when I’m away from dharma stuff. I’ve been so immersed in MCTB2 and Daniel for so many months that I think this is probably just a necessary re-balancing, a return to the familiar touchstones that were in my life before all this.
And, yes, Bill was giving me instructions.
Thank you for your words, Vasily. It means so much to me, and you really are so very wise beyond your years.