Talking Points

Portrait In Purple

Portrait In Purple


March 24, 2015 4:04 PM

For the BATGAP interview, they’d like some “preparation material” that might make good discussion topics for the interview. Since most of my stuff is on the blogs, I’ll probably just point them to posts I’ve done.

Besides the About Me page (which has much of this), I think I’ll pass on the following:

Note to blog readers: I think I’ve covered most everything, but if you have any other suggestions or ideas you’d like to see, please post them in the comments below. Thanks!

The Dangers Below

Boulders Unseen. Dangers Unknown.

Boulders Unseen. Dangers Unknown.

FLINT RIVER OUTSIDE NEWTON, GA — #LivingIt #Emptiness #MiracleLog #FourthWall

March 23, 2015 1:03 PM

He asked me if I was fishing.

“No, I don’t fish,” I replied, “Just hanging out, having some lunch.”

He told me this whole area use to be state land, but now this boat ramp was all that was left of it. He pointed across the river and explained there were huge boulders lying just below the surface over there. He doesn’t launch his boat here anymore because of those damn boulders. He explained how he has a stainless steel prop and if you were to hit one of those rocks, rather than bend a blade, it would tear up your engine and the whole back of your boat. I nodded silently, not because I knew any of this, but because I’m always grateful when She talks to me through strangers…

The mind says, “Get a stainless steel prop. It’s tough, doesn’t rust or tarnish and is maintenance free. It’s great!”

But when this thought—this theory—is applied, well, then the theory doesn’t always hold up to Reality.

Earlier this morning, as I was driving down the rural backroads of Southern Georgia, I came across a wonderful sign:

What difference does it make which church you stay home from?

That’s really the gist of what sets the Mystic apart from the philosophers, isn’t it? The key difference between the Mystic and the nondualists who only focus on the Emptiness quality. The Mystic knows that in order to truly understand something, you’ve got to throw yourself into the fray. To not just talk about it, not just think and theorize and pontificate about it, but to dive in—consequences be damned—and live it.

To be a Mystic—to walk the talk—means you very well might hit a boulder and rip out the transom of your boat. But hidden among those dark and dangerous boulders are where the big fish lay—submerged secrets that the philosophers standing on the shore have no access to—and all the thinking and theorizing and excuses in the world won’t land a single one of them.

It’s easy to talk about this stuff, but not so easy to do.

The smart have their books. The wise have their scars.

The Challenges of Living It

Door and Fence

Door and Fence


March 22, 2015 7:59 AM

Last night, I perused some of the Buddha at the Gas Pump interviews. In one, Rick mentions how most teachers are descriptive rather than prescriptive (theory versus application).

Synchronistically (of course), the following appeared in my news feed this morning:

All the time we spend inventing reasons is probably better spent responding to what occurs.
Seth Godin

So much of what nondual teachers utter is theoretical (“inventing reasons”). I hope I don’t come across that way.

Granted, I’m full of theories, but I hope this diary provides transparent, real world examples of something far more important—far more practicalThe challenges of living in harmony with your spiritual beliefs (“responding to what occurs”).


Different Colors. Same Function.

Different Colors. Same Function.

BOYNTON BEACH, FL — #Encounters #LivingIt #Surrender

March 19, 2015 6:40 PM

I dropped in at a business complex where I thought Timmerman, a friend since childhood, was working, only to find he was no longer employed there. I dropped in instead of calling because, let’s face it, the unexpected is much more exciting—much more memorable.

Jim—a programmer who had worked there at the same tedious job for at least 15 years—said, “Timmerman quit, I don’t know, maybe a few months ago?”

When I finally caught up with Timmerman for lunch, it turned out he had quit three years ago (not “a few months”).

Monotony kills you in many ways, but the worst is that it steals time. It steals your very life.

Neil Young said it best:

It’s better to burn out than to fade away.

Since we hadn’t gotten together for over ten years, much had changed in both our lives. Timmerman is now a devote Christian, though he adamantly rejects the concept of “being religious.” He explained that religions are all about rules and rules push us away from God, not bring us closer to Him.

When I explained my theory of deep beliefshow evidence is required to alleviate the doubting subconscious—he explained that he too found God via the evidence route (study of comparative religions, deep analysis of the Bible, back and forth dialog with Christian experts, …).

He also told me that, as he surrendered more to God, his life got much easier, almost magically so. This, of course, supports something I’ve been saying for years:

The less there is of you, the more there is of Her.

After all these years, it was great to see Timmerman again and I was surprised—even grateful—at how much we were in agreement on our beliefs. Who would have thought? A devote Christian and a nondual Mystic agreeing on practically everything.

Let’s face it, the unexpected is much more exciting—much more memorable.

A BSDM Meet Up

MELBOURNE, FL#LivingIt #MiracleLog

March 7, 2015 1:27 PM

I headed south on US 1, looking for a place to eat. Every restaurant I came across was either unappealing or packed. As I passed a Latin restaurant, She told me to loop around and I pulled into a mostly empty parking lot.

Having the dining room to myself, I sat down and ordered lunch. Within moments, other people started to trickle in, all eyeing me curiously. Thinking it was the push/pull thing I often get, I didn’t give it much thought until I overheard some of the conversations—about slaves and masters and safe words. Turns out it was a meeting of the local BSDM’ers (whatever they call themselves).

Smiling to myself and trying to understand why She brought me here, I shifted to the Dream Perspective and saw all of these Souls just trying to find their way. I looked closely at the women to see if any were attending against their will, but was surprised to find them all animate and happy and quite comfortable with themselves.

I considered approaching the group but couldn’t think of anything to say (the whole pain-thing’s not my cup of tea), so after lunch, I just left.

Consenting adults. Soul’s finding their way. I’m good with that.

We each have our own unique path to walk.

Spring Came Suddenly

Wading In Deep

Wading In Deep

MELBOURNE, FL — #LivingIt #VanDwelling

March 2, 2015 1:03 PM

A flock of snowy white egrets landed in the vacant lot next door and proceeded to find their breakfast as the old guys in McDonalds bitched about the state of World Affairs and what they—the mysterious Them—should do to fix things.

Pre-dawn fog enveloped the roadway as I sought a quiet refuge to drink my coffee in peace. I pulled into an abandoned parking lot and settled in.

After coffee and emails and the blogs I follow, I dissolved into Her and communed and tried to ignore my thoughts and I contemplated Death and felt how sweet this simple exercise makes all Life.

And it was good.

Later, I drove Mom—who’s not quite comfortable driving so soon after her surgery—to the store and we shopped for groceries and some reading glasses. Around 11am, we finished and Mom looked at her wrist and asked if I thought we should pick up some steak sandwiches for lunch, as one of her favorite sub shops was right around the corner. I knew she was hesitant since her watch told her it was too early for her to eat, so I set a simple trap and asked, “Do you?”

“Well,” she replied, but I interrupted her.

“‘Well’ means ‘Yes’ and everything after that is just Mind talking.”

So we got some subs, took them back home and they were good and Dad was happy and everything worked out.

I hopped in my van and drove off, unsure of a destination.

The air is warm and moist and sticky today. Spring came suddenly to Florida. I pulled in next to the water and cut off all my hair.

And it feels good.

Hard To Come By

Being Eyeballed by a Crow

Being Eyeballed by a Crow


March 1, 2015 2:26 PM

Though I put in links to my About Me page and other “credentials,” Swami Abhayananda quickly declined my offer to meet up, referring me to his books and website instead.

I’m disappointed.

Though theory is quite easy to discuss in correspondence (and books and articles and on-stage), honest experience is much more easily conveyed in a live, back-and-forth conversation. It is almost impossible not to be transparent when you’re sitting across a table from each other as equals.

Pity. I was really looking forward to a discussion with him. Mystics are so hard to come by these days.

Lessons From The Past

Working In A Coffee Shop

Working In A Coffee Shop

MELBOURNE, FL — #LivingIt #Surrender

February 28, 2015 9:59 AM

After looking in on Mom to see how her second bionic eye is doing after her cataract surgery (“Good”), I drove to find a place to get some writing done. On the way, I spotted a woman awkwardly riding a bike too short for her height, and seeing her struggling with it, it reminded me of the time I rode across the town of Eugene, OR on a miserable folding bicycle during the stressful and miserable Trials of the Big Black Box Truck of 2010. What a nightmare I was living back then! It’s amazing how much easier my life has become since I’ve made Surrender my primary directive—to cease trying, to cease resisting, and to just flow with Life. Why did it take me so long to learn this?

Speaking of Life-lining-up-when-you-surrender, I saw an article today which states that after their brutal, record breaking Winter, the Northeast should be blessed with a warmer than normal Spring. Perfect! Just in time for my travels. I’m a very lucky man.

Peter from Melbourne Australia suggested that before I hit the road again, that I drop in on Swami Abhayananda who may be living here in Florida (though I saw elsewhere that he may be living in Washington state). In researching his background, I found some books of his that look quite interesting. This gives me even more stuff to read! I swear I’ve got at least a dozen books that I’m either in the middle of or have queued up in my Kindle-hopper.

I believe I will try to contact him. In an all-day review of his works yesterday, he comes across as quite transparent about his former life, some of which was quite controversial. (At great personal cost, he “outed” his abusive guru.).

I’m always interested in talking to Mystics who—as Abhayananda obviously does—walk the talk.

A Morning Backward

The Morning Routine

The Morning Routine

MELBOURNE, FL — #MiracleLog #LivingIt

February 22, 2015 7:50 AM

As the morning sky glowed with the dawn of a new day, I drove on an empty road as Modern English’s I Melt With You played on the radio:

You’ve seen the difference and it’s getting better all the time.

The lyrics fit in perfectly with my practice of not taking the mind so seriously and what I had just read in this morning’s blog post by Seth Godin, The Trolls Inside:

But the [Troll] in your head, that voice of insecurity and self-criticism, that’s the one you need to be the most vigilant about.

Do not feed the troll.

Do not reason with the troll.

Do not argue with the troll.

Most of all, don’t litigate. Don’t make your case, call your witnesses, prove you are right. Because the troll knows how to sway a jury even better than you do.

The troll inside is the “I” of my CSI-IED meditation. Ignore the mind. Irrelevant thoughts. Insignificant mental noise. Lot’s of I’s (me-me-me-me). The troll inside.

I had read Seth’s post as I lay in bed—a bird outside my window, singing his morning song. I had read it after finishing my CSI-IED meditation and I was feeling One and Light and Eternal and Temporary.

I did this meditation first thing this morning because I had just awoken from a dream of drama—of thoughts taken too seriously—probably brought on by binging on Jack Bauer and 24 last night—and the thoughts (the irrelevant, insignificant, yet troll-y thoughts) were leaving me feeling contracted and dark.

Contracted and Dark versus One and Light.

You’ve seen the difference and it’s getting better all the time.


The Eye-a-lator

The Eye-a-lator

MELBOURNE, FL — #LivingIt #VanDwelling

February 9, 2015 11:34 AM

I got an email yesterday from Dave. In it, he was explaining finding direction to this directionless state that seems to be a common trait to this level of consciousness:

Funny how things work. I have just been reminded of my underlying “purpose”. My intent, if you will, that gives direction to my no direction.

Intent is a very good word. A very useful word—particularly for this directionless state. When everything feels the same—when everything is valued the same—it is very hard to keep motivated toward a specific goal or project.

Ergo, intentIntent is like a direction without a goal.

For example, since I started nomading it, I have often thought a cool idea was to hit all four corners of the continental U.S. on each of the seasonal solstices. That’s a goal. It’s focused and it’s measurable and it’s practical.

But it is also a bit too rational and restrictive for my taste. It’s too much mind and not enough heart.

An intent on the other hand—an intent I’m considering—is to meander up to the northeast this spring, maybe re-visit Maine or Nova Scotia since I rushed through them last time. It’s a direction without any specific deadline or destination. The intent is simply, “The Northeast.”

A broader intent—a spiritual purpose—is to help people. I don’t know how to help them, nor who needs help, but I do know that helping others feels right. This blog is kind of an example of this—a meandering help to online “strangers”—but I’m thinking a more hands on approach would be nice during my travels.

Segueing along the helping others lines: I drove Mom to the grocery store this morning since she didn’t think she could drive with her only-one-cataract-replaced state, but as we drove, she realized her distance depth perception (yards) was a lot better than her near perception (feet), so she drove on the way back and did fine. Probably not good for long distances, but short hops around town should be do-able for her.