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New to Non-Duality?
Gareth: Hello. When I got that previous email, I started to do just that. I have read (not skimmed) your website, watched every video on Ramji’s YouTube page and just finished up the retreat back in march in Germany. I have not read his book. I have studied C.G. Jung and Nikola Tesla. I have been seeking knowledge of the self from a very young age. The experience of life had to be accomplished first.
Of the qualifications: I am taking a personal retreat that dharma is wanting me take. I need to learn discipline and gain control of my karmic habits that have accumulated over the years (smoking, eating, etc.) hence my trip. I have to take care of the self first. If I can’t do that, then I would be wasting time. I, as myself and this body, want to take this long trip. My experience in this body of certain events has allowed my perspective to see and understand what the programing of dharma and the self want. I KNOW (by this I mean nothing of the physical body, no feelings or thoughts, only the knower). I hope I explained that right. I am shadowed by my habitual objects and lack of focused training.
My perceptions and experiences in this body have brought me to this point in my life along with the natural programming of Isvara, or dharma (forgive me if I explained this wrong). Five months ago I had an epiphany, of a general direction for my retreat to go. I am to head in the direction of Lewiston from my location.
Thank you for your offer of teaching and sharing of your thoughts. Timing is everything and if we ever meet in the future or speak again, that would be great. I try not to live with expectations. I like things as pure as possible, with an open mind. Our time was short and we played our part. Time for me (this body) to experience the knowledge of what I have learned and come to understand in this world and of the self. Your timing was perfect to allow me to see the effects of one of the missing qualifications. All this knowledge that James has shared, at this moment in time, of my life, in this body, is just a spark. I have a lot to think about. I am leaving the last time for a long, long, long time tomorrow and will be checking my emails. Thank you for your interesting comment – I have since been thinking, breaking everything down to its basic form.
~ Peace and love be with you both, Gareth
Sundari: Hello, Gareth, I am glad my reply to you made you think. Before we continue, and for me to teach you, you need to do some work on your side, which is what we ask everyone who writes in to do.
If you are interested, please go to our website and look on the home page for a text block that says “New to Non-Duality?” Watch the video, listen to the interviews and read the articles. We also ask that people read James’ book How to Attain Enlightenment and also read some of the e-satsangs posted at our website. This is so that you can ask the right questions.
Vedanta is the science of life; it is not a religion, philosophy or “spiritual path” and requires some qualification on your part in order to make sense to you. It is up to you if you choose to do this and we will understand if you do not.
~ Namaste, Sundari
Gareth: It took me awhile to understand/translate your reply. I have never looked into Vedanta till this letter and had to think about it. It gives me other ways to look at things on my journey to discovering the self.
Is the plan/program of Isvara witnessed by us revealed to us in the outside world’s projection? It uses dharma, so why not this world as well? Thank you for playing your part.
Sundari: We wish you all the very best on your trip. May it bring you what you are looking for. You have some very basic confusion around the nature of the self and the objects that appear in it, such as the person with a name and a story, their thoughts feelings and conditioning. The qualifications I refer to are not a resumé of experiences of whatever nature, spiritual or otherwise, nor are they necessarily a product of books read or courses taken unless the teachings hold self-knowledge and are unfolded by a qualified teacher and assimilated by the mind.
The qualifications are developed in a mind that is purified and has learned discrimination and dispassion, primarily, and which also has a burning desire for liberation from suffering. They are covered extensively in James’ book. A good thing to do would be to buy the book and take it with you on your journey. It is one of the very best books available to those who are seriously interested in self-inquiry.
~ Om, Sundari