More On Suffering Less

Camp Cleansed

Camp Cleansed

FLAGSTAFF, AZ — #FourthWall #Soul #Technique #VanDwelling

June 13, 2015 12:30 PM

I tossed the plastics into a trash bag and built a bonfire from the remaining wood out of the garbage some anonymous camper had left behind. The night was dark and cool and the flames grew to a height of over six feet.

Ah, if it were only so easy to burn away self-centered thoughts. … Read more…

The Making Of Skillful Sailors

Exploring The Edges

Exploring The Edges

RIM ROAD, AZ — #BATGAP #Emptiness #FourthWall #Intimate #MiracleLog #Radiance #Soul #Technique

May 31, 2015 8:28 AM

I awoke last night with the thought, “Why don’t people share my work?” Like a fool, I had glanced at the Batgap home page before I went to bed and saw my interview had a grand total of six Facebook shares. Even taking into account only being listed for a week, I figured that if people liked my interview as much as the previous guest, I should have at least 25.

Funny how the mind works in the middle of the night. … Read more…

The Usefulness Of Emptiness Practice

The Space Behind Which Makes It Beautiful

The Space Behind Which Makes It Beautiful

OUTSIDE HEBER, AZ — #Emptiness #Radiance #Soul

May 27, 2015 7:20 AM

After uploading yesterday’s post, I hopped into the van and drove into Show Low for supplies. In town, I considered a movie, but nothing tugged at my heart so I continued onward, later making camp in the forest outside Heber, AZ.

Yesterday’s post may seem like I was dissing Emptiness, but I’m not. When you fall through the Gateless Gate, Emptiness becomes apparent, but before you fall through the Gate, the practice of Emptiness can be useful in seeing through the illusion of the false-you (ego, personal self, whatever you call it). … Read more…

The Rare = Valuable Assumption

The Empty (but not very practical) Window

The Empty (but not very practical) Window

APACHE NF, AZ — #BATGAP #Emptiness #FourthWall #Radiance #Soul

May 26, 2015 7:46 AM

Note: I’m going to slip into “teacher/theory mode” for a few posts (sorry), because the BATGAP interview inspired some insights. I’ve gone back and tagged posts relating to the interview, “BATGAP“, for easy reference.

I’ve mentioned previously about why my message comes across so differently than many nondual teachers. Another, more obvious, reason is that I don’t focus exclusively on the Emptiness/Vastness quality. … Read more…

Snow and Heaters and Carbon Monoxide Dreaming

The Forest Snow

The Forest Snow

APACHE NF, AZ — #Death #FourthWall #LivingIt #Soul #VanDwelling

May 16, 2015 9:53 AM

I awoke to a few inches of snow on the ground this morning, enough to make a nice, white blanket. Yesterday was a mix of rain and snow, so I stayed inside the van the whole time, grateful for the hightop and the space it provides to move around in.

Running the heater most of yesterday reminded me of something: How my spiritual practice saved my life about six months ago.Read more…

At Death’s Door

Looking Toward Eternity

Looking Toward Eternity

UPPER MATECUMBE KEY, FL#VanDwelling #Soul #Technique

March 16, 2015 10:30 PM

The cop reached for his gun and shouted, “Take your hands out of your pockets!” and I smiled—not because I was trying to ease his fears, but because I felt absolutely no fear myself. A simple movement of my hand up or down would determine if my body would be wracked with high velocity 9mm bullets or not.

“What are you doing here!” he shouted.

“Reading my email,” I replied, still smiling and holding up my phone. What a wonderful experience!

He seemed to relax and explained I couldn’t sleep here, that it was OK to fish all night long, but just no sleeping—no camping. I replied I was just catching up on computer stuff while enjoying this nice cool breeze blowing through my rig. It was the truth too, I had my camping spot already picked out and—unlike this spot—it was well away from the noisy highway.

He nodded, stared at me a moment, then drove off.

One of the things Michelle and I have been discussing lately is how important it is for your beliefs to be deep—that when you deeply believe something (ie: The Eternal quality and how you-as-consciousness detach from the body at physical death), then these deep beliefs act as a foundation for your spiritual identity. We have been discussing that when your beliefs are deep enough, they will automatically affect your thoughts, emotions, and reactions.

Ergo, the involuntary smile and feeling of peace as Death Himself (and a frightened police officer) threatened this body’s existence.

All the evidence suggests that the Soul is real. No evidence supports the theory that we blink out. All it takes is a little reading and discernment for the shift from Mortal to Soul to occur.

On Apathy And Inner Peace

The Cafe Counter

The Cafe Counter

MELBOURNE, FL#Remember #Technique #Soul #Radiance

March 7, 2015 9:27 AM

At the cafe counter of the local Barnes and Noble, five strangers converged at the empty order register at the exact same instant. The barista, with her back to us while she rinsed off some dishes, jumped in shock when she saw the crowd which had mysteriously appeared out of nowhere. Without a word, we all smiled.

I’m conflicted.

On the one hand, what I’ve been contemplating lately could lead directly to inner peace.

On the other hand, it could lead to apathy.

Screw it, I’ll practice it for a bit and see what I find. All my readers are big boys and girls, they’re old enough to deal with the implications on their own:

If you truly live as a Soul, then this life is no more real than a dream.

Why? From my previous post, To Thrive:

Reincarnation implies that our current (seemingly all-important) life will soon feel like a dream.

All the evidence suggests that we are disincarnate, intelligent (but confused) entities currently driving around temporary bodies in a temporary physical world and that we will take on new bodies/worlds again and again and again. This experience is almost exactly like a dream: We participate in a dream. We consider it real. We wake up and realize the “real” reality. Then we fall back asleep and do it all over again.

Oddly enough, the inner peace that this perspective generates is the main attraction—the main benefit—of enlightenment. Indeed this Soul-perspective coincides with what the Buddha hinted at when he said, “Life is like a dream.”

Inner peace via a higher vantage point.

I’m going to practice this for a few days. To strive to keep this perspective—that all this is but a dream that I will soon wake up from—and see how it affects me.

My conflict? Without Love—without Radiancethis insight could very easily lead to apathy. I’ve already started to notice this apathy—this “it’s just a dream inner-peace defense”— when the emotions well up when hearing about ISIS atrocities, broadcast “news” exaggerations fill the airwaves, and my “distancing reactions” to differences of opinions.

Still, when you combine this insight with Love—that what I am experiencing right now is a shared dream by all of us-as-Souls—man, then it is so beautiful it’s heartbreaking.

Right now, I’m not sure how to resolve the conflict—the conflict of apathy and inner peace. Maybe with practice…

Death and Taxes

Waiting On The Light

Waiting On The Light

MELBOURNE, FL — #Death #Soul #MiracleLog

March 5, 2015 1:00 PM

I did my taxes today. Filed and paid them online. The damage wasn’t too bad. Relieved to be done with them, I picked up some Thai food to celebrate.

Sitting in the van, digesting my lunch, a small moth flitted across my line of vision. The van, parked cross-wise to the breeze, created an air pocket for the moth, a welcome doldrums where he could fly about undisturbed. As if to celebrate his good fortune, the moth did a couple ascending victory circles before coming to alight on a stone in front of me.

Blink.

A lizard leapt out and swallowed him whole.

Blink.

The sudden end to the moth’s story.

No physical life form lives for long.

Yet Life never dies.

I had forgotten to take the tax bill into account when evaluating my savings… but I don’t care, I’m Eternal.

Blink.

Two entire months vanish.

Lizard or moth? When you live forever, does it matter? I’m happy for them both.

I’m happy for the lizard.

I’m happy for the moth.

I don’t fear death. I look forward to seeing what happens.

I’m happy for me.

Spiraling Out Of Control

Goal Oriented

Goal Oriented

MELBOURNE, FL — #Death #Soul

March 4, 2015 2:07 PM

It started out with what I felt was an inspiring and perfect idea, “I think I’ll come back as Michelle’s son, then Michelle can re-teach me Mystical Oneness,” but because Mom doesn’t believe that we get to pick our next life, the conversation quickly spiraled out of control.

At the point where she was telling me how negative I’ve become and how disappointed in me she was that I’d lost hope in Mankind and when Dad told me that all I wanted to do was win, I knew I was doomed.

It’s not that I want to win (particularly when it comes to beliefs). All I really want is to be understood.

I don’t know why though. I don’t know why being understood feels so important.

Should I be inauthentic to make my life easier? Should I tell people what they want to hear just to be popular? Should I smile and glow and spew theories based simply on mind stuff and not real world experience?

Should I just walk away?

Sometimes I get so tired.

I know I’m holding on too tight to this—to being understood. More mind crap. When I dissolve into Her—as I just did a few moments ago—She smiles and nods and knows I’ll learn my lesson eventually.

Hah! Is it any wonder spiritual teachers don’t blog about their personal lives?