Aloha, my friends.
This is so funny: Not five minutes after putting up my last posting, ‘One Story at a Time’, in which I spoke about what it’s like when I drop the stories about thoughts, feelings, and beliefs, I read the following from Jeff Foster:
“There is no need to constantly remind you of my story. There is no interest in separating myself from you in that way. There is no interest in proving to you how awakened I am…
Awakening is the easy part… Telling stories about your past is the easy part…
The real adventure begins when you are willing to lose all stories, including these stories of your own spiritual transformation, your own specialness, your own purity, and be totally naked in front of life…”
Ha! When I read Jeff’s words a thought came that maybe there should be ‘uh oh’ feelings about what I’d written. Guilt or remorse that I’d done a no-no. Or maybe some sort of shame should be felt. Maybe I was just blowing out stories, trying to manipulate your idea of Lisa, or mine of myself (even though I recognize there is no ‘myself” to manipulate or be manipulated; more on this later). I wondered, so I looked…
…and in the looking at them those ideas dissolved as untrue. What took their place was this: before and after writing I’d considered my intentions to be benevolent; if I’d seen my ‘stuff’ (aka my crap) there in the form of printed words I would have cleaned it up. And that I could check these two things, verify them. I could know if I had been telling stories about my story. So some time was spent inquiring. It went like this:
Q: What was my intention with this communication? To share with interested others what’s happening.
Q: Why? It might be found to be helpful, interesting.
Q: Why is that thought? Because if I hadn’t written it, I would have been one of the ones interested in reading it! Gotta be more out there.
OK. Intention validated.
Next, the willingness to see my stuff when it comes up, in this case within a communication. Inquiry, please:
Q: Is there a willingness to see my crapola? Yes, it is welcomed. No transformation without willingness. Ahh, that seems clear.
Q: OK, what would happen when it pops up (’cause it always does, sooner or later)? Look at it, own it… go into it and find the source.
Q: OK, great, but what if it is too-o-o-o-o sensitive, buttons are pushed, what then? Ye gads. OK, here’s what we’ll do:
#1: Ignore the possibility of ignoring it (achieved via remembering that a reaction to almost anything means PERSONAL CRAP ALERT).
#2: Don’t communicate until clarity has come.
#3 Immediately, or when time permits, look at the crap, dig down until the source is genuinely located. Sit with it until releasable (at least for now).
#4 Revise the communication.
#5 Give thanks, more crap flushed!
OK. Satisfaction here. I am not in denial about intentions nor willingness to catch myself spewing fictional pompous blather (and it’s not my business if others decide to take it as fictional pompous blather). It remains to be seen if there is follow-thru. Meanwhile, here comes the point and the punchline:
The above is a description of willing inquiry, which creates a space within which radical honesty can be created. My touchstone for this:
“Truth is a very high standard. Truth is not a plaything. To tell what is true within ourselves is not to to tell what we think; it is not to tell our opinion. It is not to dump the garbage can of our mind onto somebody else. All of that is illusion, distortion, projection.
Truth is not unloading our opinions onto someone. That is not truth. Truth is not telling our beliefs about things. That is not truth. Those are ways that we actually hide from truth. Truth is much more intimate than that.
When we tell the truth…we come completely out of hiding.”
Adyashanti, ‘The End of Your World’
What an unequivocal statement, instantly recognized as legitimate! This is the gold standard of communication between you and me, and within myself. It is scary to ponder, and very much seen as worth any effort.
So, summing up what it is that seems to be happening: Intentions here are honorable. Willingness to recognize and deal with crap is in place. The bar is set to the perfect high level. All systems go.
Shall we move back a bit, get a running start? Take off together and go for the gold?