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The Genie Pole
David: Pranams, Guruji, dear friend.
On February 1, 2016 you accepted my request to be your student, saying, “Assuming that I get all the credit for your successes and none of the blame for your failure,” means you have the karma of getting all these gratitude emails, sorry. ☺ So consider this a gratitude report from the field…
James: Drat! I’ll be more careful when I accept people from now on.
David: “Climbing the Isvara/genie pole” continues to be a helpful sadhana for this karma yogi, especially when things get confusing. The question of surrender to/acceptance of the fact that everything is perfect as it is, versus the desire (or is it an idea?) that the mind has to be purified in order to assimilate the knowledge that all is Isvara, has been a perplexing one of late.
James: It only has to be purified if don’t see it as mithya. Purification is mithya too, David. I’m assuming that purification means doing some kind of psychological work, which is not the kiss of death insofar as you take David to be a real entity.
David: For example, seeing behavior in myself or others who are supposedly Self-actualized that contradicts ahimsa has been a question that keeps resurfacing.
James: Do you mean that you are supposedly Self-actualized? Or do you mean others? Or both.
Satya and mithya, the Self and world, are eternal. Mithya includes dharma and adharma. If there is no adharma, there is no dharma. So there is nothing to be done about adharma. It is always present. Insofar as you are a doer, you should only look to the adharma you inflict on yourself. The dharma that others inflict is none of your business.
David: As always, the answers reveal themselves eventually, so there’s no real issue here but it is a current subject for contemplation. The Gita talks from Carbondale on karma yoga have been most helpful in this regard, but basically I come back to something you said to me at your house in Bend – “take it easy” – and so I come back to myself and appreciate the simplicity of existence – grateful once again for you and these teachings.
James: There’s “no real issue” here means there is an issue here?
David: Given the recent upheavals of my mind, I’m thinking of the genie pole more as an anchor, a constant amidst the seemingly endless movement of change. It’s the still point in the midst of motion, the mover and shaker rajas – the engine of samsara.
James: A genie pole for whom? For you or for David? You are the genie pole. There is nothing to climb.
David: It’s amazing to see how emotion runs the world, from the smallest bug searching for food to the Trumps of the world craving power. I see it running my mind, all likes and dislikes, all based on emotion, the root being the fear born of conditioned ignorance. Yes, the pole is really an anchor but the knowledge is the same. Thank you again.
James: You are most welcome.
David: Sometimes the details of Vedanta are perfectly clear and helpful and other times they seem burdensome and the intellect is stuffed full.
James: Well, nididhyasana is getting rid of Vedanta as a means of knowledge. If you are the Self, you don’t need it. The teaching shouldn’t stuff the intellect. It should empty it. Maybe you’re trying to remember all the teachings. The teachings consume impurities and then eat themselves.
David: It’s all good, but it was poignant yesterday in one of those Gita videos when things were getting complicated, you said to simply return to the Fact of Existence. That simple message, combined with a gnawing realization that this whole thing is out of my hands and that no matter what I think or do as a jiva, it doesn’t make a scrap of difference, and that the whole framework of “Enlightenment” is an ironic joke. Honestly, I don’t know if this comes from frustration over the first question about needing to purify my mind to assimilate this knowledge or just the first inkling of what surrender means. Again, it’s not a problem, all is well here in the field, and “taking it easy” is Isvara’s message.
James: Good thinking. Yes, I think it comes from frustration over the first question. Maybe your satya/mithya vasana needs a bit of reinforcing. You, the ever-experienced existent awareness, are the unchanging magnetic pole around which the thoughts and emotions cluster. Taking it easy just means appreciating the fact that you exist is the ultimate value. All else is mere epiphenomena. So you have to learn to just relax and smell the roses.
David: The last thing I’d like to share is the realization that the light is me and that I illuminate the world. What a joy to realize that there is truly nothing to be gained from the world, and that I AM complete.
~ Om Tat Sat