On the aftermath of change …

There are times in our lives when we need solitude, it becomes totally necessary, this can give us the time we need to try and understand the past, the challenge which we were presented with, and we hopefully understand the reason for the challenge in the first place .. and at some point understand, what we have learnt from the experience. This is something that is incredibly personal, and simple … but it only needs to make sense to you, it must be simple, not convoluted, not a conspiracy.

We do need people in our lives as well …. during this time if we can look outside ourselves, act to help others, conversations with others, over time this can bring a change in perspective, empathy and kindness for others and eventually love back into our lives.

Please bear in mind that God, however you perceive the divine to be, does not judge or punish us, we are totally loved and understood, what I have learnt is that because of our beliefs we punish ourselves …. As others behave towards us … often the perpetrators of these lessons, the others in our lives cannot see the import of what they have done, they do not understand nor it seems care, all they see is something else they desire – their actions do the rest.

For us to be free of their actions and any time in the past, we must forgive them for our own sake, so we are no longer controlled by our past. After we have conquered the challenge, we grow, we become stronger … more solid in our foundations.

We know that Trust is the foundation of all relationships, without trust, there is nothing …. in my case that was critical to the lesson I learnt, which also led me to understand the nature of love itself, not the conditional kind, this love which I speak is not available to most of us on earth, or should I say in the duality world. So I wait, for that love to come into my life, will it come, I am told in my meditations that it will (but I don’t know) …

One needs to be careful when speaking or listening to our souls, for the soul is influenced by our spirit, so when speaking of subjects the spirit holds dear, it may be incorrect … as you may also know our Karma is held in our soul … so asking the soul a question can possibly lead to the creation of an illusion …. I keep coming back to this … Accept, stay present and flow … this little phrase is one I have to constantly remind myself of. I don’t know this, but it feels right that Karma also springs from our past lives and carries forward. As we progress if you are not at peace, fulfilled, or haven’t realized unconditional love, then our true abundant nature may be obscured, it may only be part of the process of spiritual evolution, please do not judge yourself, as I feel we must have faith and take little steps, but just keep moving forward.

We lament constantly with the rhetoric that comes from others, from Politicians, the ignorant and the uninformed or those who have – in their mind – the illusion of knowledge …. To be detached from their rhetoric and actions is hard …. But it is their perspective and so long as it is only rhetoric there is little harm to it for you and I …. The problem becomes manifest when issues are constantly regurgitated … it changes the tone of the conversation from being just blame and criticism, often about subjects which we have no influence over, like World affairs, Government policies, the actions of others, also about the past, about perceived injustices or oppressions – also fear / uncertainty concerning the future … where constant repetition may bring depression, blame, guilt, shame, fear – frustration and may lead to anger and violence … this is when people stop thinking and act to hurt or destroy… all these are also part of us, but being apparently a victim, can be quite destructive to our consciousness, our self-worth, our sense of self, our strength … because we think we are powerless, when in fact we are the crucible of all power, for we are unlimited, we are the Universe.

This is all just a perspective, it has no more value than anyone else’s …. I would welcome your comments and thoughts concerning this. Please note I still have moments with living in the world, such as things happening that are unexpected …. I have to also be aware of over thinking anything …. Over thinking in a way is like digging a hole, deeper and deeper … to survive, at some point we have to let go of the past, an event a person and begin again …. It feels so good when we have this realisation and act, for it feels like a great weight has been lifted off our shoulders.

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Solitude & Transformation – 18 days in the forest

I am writing this is Cyprus, detached by time and distance from the original experience in Australia.

It has taken me many years to achieve this, a very limited perspective about what happened in this experience, in time this perspective may also change.

The originator was a frustrating experience which I had allowed to happen where I had given others my love and trust and these were betrayed, instead their misguided ideology that valued no one but themselves, their beliefs, assumptions, projection and fears were the end of us … this experience created a need in me for real solitude .. I had reached a point where all the old ways no longer made sense, I kept hitting a wall – people’s promises and words did not match their actions … I needed to find what was real as mindfulness and meditation although helping weren’t bringing clarity.

I was in a sea of pain, my internal compass was spinning and I had no idea what to do … I was unable to understand the thinking, the beliefs and values of those who had professed their love, then had created this challenge, all emanating from a group that said they lived by Buddhist teachings – a truism being that the basis of all relationships is trust.

I was deep in despair then finally I decided to isolate myself purposefully from all distractions, to try and understand why this challenge had come to me … what was it in me that I had to understand, to face and overcome, I wondered what was I to learn from the experience?

The nurturing environment of nature beckoned, it had always been a wonderful energising and calming experience for me, I would go. …. I took some food, tent etc and went looking for a camp site in the state forest – my past experience in nature automatically kicked in, I set up camp, explored the area, boiled water for a drink, all the time feeling the balance and harmony, the nurturing energy of natured flowed into me, then I began to meditate.

Over the next 18 days, I travelled through transitions – the first four days, were a most unsettling, and confronting experience … illusions came and went … even in a conscious state I found difficulty in understanding the actions of others … my ego screamed out in defiance of my mindfulness but I did not engage and after a while its voice diminished until I eventually found the no mind state … for days I was in a place of wonder … peak experiences came …. some have been repeated since, it was an incredible humbling learning experience where I could see the balance and interconnectivity of life in nature all around me, from the plants, the insects, the birds the animals and myself – we were one.

During my time in the forest I heard an another voice, a voice I had heard before, which I now know is my soul, it asked me did I want to go on? I asked what would happen if I didn’t, the voice said “we will then stop here, but if you go through you can never go back, you are on a new path” … I said let’s go, and here I am.

I have never regretted this decision.

In the forest, after a while I become one with the environment, the forest and all the life it contained … I couldn’t separate myself I couldn’t judge the actions of others for this reason – this extended to my recent challenge … I couldn’t judge, all I could do was to try and empathise in an effort to understand their actions and what beliefs had brought the situation to me – there was nothing in me that enabled me to understand the motivations of the others in this experience, all I could was to accept the situation, forgive those that had betrayed me, let go and move on.

I finally understood the Alan Watts quote: “If you go off into a far, far forest and get very quiet, you’ll come to understand that you’re connected with everything”

Any action, good or bad that comes with intent, brings Karma … I knew that Karma would handle the situation with those in my past far better than I could, so I let go of the past, forgave it and moved on.

As always this was my experience, it may have some similarities with your own or not. There is no right way for everyone’s journey is their own

Along with a new perspective on the present moment, Peace, Love, detachment, understanding and presence came and has stayed.

Why you might not want to Visit India.

I understand why you might not want to visit India …. It is a most confronting experience; the contrast is so evident between the rich and the poor who have literally nothing …. with little of no opportunity to improve their lives … India over time makes you question everything you thought was human, equitable and caring and truly makes you wonder about how this can be … but for me it also stripped away my own past and the connection to all that was there – all these learning experiences .. become integrated and distant from your present moment .. they make you more present and understanding, because we have to be, continual awareness of your surroundings is critical … the effect was that it felt like the past was being pushed further and further away from the present … so for that I am thankful – now those past difficult times are absent from my mind … any hurt no longer exists – it is but a past memory without emotive attachment.

There are no social programs to catch the poor … human life seems to have little value … strangely it was a surprise for me to remember after I arrived in India that it truly is a third world country, I guess I had little concept of what that actually meant …. It reminded me of another country when I was a child of about 10 when Dad moved us to the Solomon Islands … (the nature of roads, buildings and infrastructure) but the Polynesian peoples are a much more open and sharing culture, or at least they were then …. The reasons why India is a third world country were everywhere around us …. Workmen trying to cut thick rebar (reinforcing iron) with a chisel and a small sledge hammer rather than a grinder or saw – taking forever – bamboo scafolding reaching high on construction sites … wages are low and safety procedures seem lax … for instance power cables running along what passes for a footpath at waist height – unterminated power cables open on the street ,,,, no way was I going to find out if they were live, by touching them …Beggars … the real ones … (those who aren’t working for someone else in an enterprise) some will accost you as you come out of shops, restaurants and tut-tuts …. Then on the human side you have the lone mother with her baby … this visage breaks your heart … you can feel it … a beautiful child just starting out in life … and it hits you like a brick that this child, whose mother loves more than life itself most likely has little chance of living a long life …. You just give what you can – they will accept what you give them, as little as 10 rupees (about USD$0.15)… for that much will buy a meal in the street stalls … The medical system is poor, some say abysmal…. I have been told that people can collapse in the street and people will walk over them … but won’t help them. When I was ill I went to the local private hospital … where I was treated by a Western Educated specialist Doctor – blood was taken … the other tests — all appeared online via a private link later the same day. The whole experience, the visit to Doctor, Tests and pharmaceuticals cost less than USD$25.00.

So Yes I understand totally why you don’t want to go to India as a tourist …. I know I would not go again unless I went with someone … someone to have my back – I had thought that if I went again, I would go to Goa … the former Portuguese colony on the West coast, south on Mumbai …. Much more familiar and accepting to western eyes and values … I am told.

Many of these observations are from the aspect of a remote observer – a tourist if you will … but when you live in one place as a base for months … the Indian people reveal their caring side, and their humanity … it’s just different from mine … they are a different culture, hence have a different perspective on life. I still receive emails from people I met there …. They like us are living day to day and trying to live and make sense of the present moment .. unlike us … the biggest aspect of their culture is that lack of caring for others, relevant education and hence opportunity …. It seems for many to be their ambition is to have a full time job in the totally bloated Bureaucracy – But perhaps that will change over time … I hope for the sake of the 160 million “Untouchables” that something does … for they are condemned by their birth in the most part, to a life we could not even conceive of.

As I said on one of my blogs … if you go to India …. (1) Only drink bottled water … never drink tap water (2) Before you drink the bottled water, make sure that the cap seal is in place as some sellers will refill water bottles with tap water – don’t drink this, for you will get ill. (3) Take toilet paper with you everywhere … true!

E.M. Forster said “When you go to India, you come face to face with yourself” – I couldn’t agree more!

Cyprus – Impressions.

Cyprus is a huge surprise in many ways in a small parcel …. urban developed areas close to , diverse rural areas and various mineral resources ( copper, iron ore, huge deposits of sandstone and limestone …. you can see the layers of earth … tossed up and tortured.. warped by the movement of the planetary plates millennials before … so diverse in the sea, the land … farming … surprisingly close to developed areas are the original small villages.. as with all humanity the surface of Cyprus covers human souls in transition … .

View of Paphos from the Marina / Port
Cyprus is in Eurozone and hence the currency is the Euro …. food quality is good, and not unreasonable (when you buy the wide diversity of local produce) – large supermarkets – well stocked … I am living in the town of Paphos, of about 30,000 people normally, population nearly doubles in the summer with European, UK and Russian visitors.

Small villages surround it, some are tiny …. roads in these villages are single lane, the width of these village roads aren’t much wider than the width of your car, they were designed for donkey carts.

Paphos has its own Bronze statue, not quite the “Little Mermaid” as in Copenhagen .. judge for yourself from the photo.

Map of the Paphos World Heritage site …
Cyprus has been inhabited for thousands of years and there is a responsible an refreshing attitude to history and in particular to archaeology … to the past .. where so may of the lessons of humanity reside. There is a World Heritage Site in Paphos, the map is shown here.

I have with the generosity of my friend Mark, been to many places, recently going to Latchi and Polis situated in the western, north facing area of the island …. it is quite wonderful to see the diversity of the island and by and large the friendliness of its people.

India – a happenstance, an inspiration

I have had many challenges in my time in India, culturally, emotionally, physically and health wise, they have dramatically changed me, to in my view, prepare me for what is to come.

More than anything they have changed how I look at large groups of people, the herd of humanity so to speak, it enabled me to change, to assume nothing, to project nothing, when we can do this we can push through the surface and to see them for who they are as individuals. People in India are little different to us, except in that they are a product of their culture, their community, their environment and beliefs, and this can manifest in many ways, one maybe an emotional repression, but remember they all want what we want at the end of the day … their life like ours is a reflection of the personality, for most of humanity this is the ego mind which creates our life individually and on a wider view, collectively for all of us.

This experience came as I hobbled across the road yesterday in Dehradun. A young man, without legs … sitting on a kind of board with wheels came up to me … it truly breaks your heart, but a big smile on his face changes the impact, changes everything – it hit me as it always does, that it is truly in our attitudes where we create our lives.

In the West we may have some expectations of life, he had none, there is no safety net for him here, no social programs … but he was smiling .. a lesson and inspiration for all of us.

It reinforced in me a way to live .. from humble gratitude, staying present, accept, flow and help who you can, how you can, when you can.

Enlightenment and the journey beyond.

You may, or there may others with a yearning to seek what is not in the physical world – to understand the path to consciousness, enlightenment and beyond – perhaps this is old news for you or others, but this is an attempt to empower and bring awareness to some of the transcendental path that awaits us all, once we enter the portal of enlightenment, our birth if you will.

In case there is any who have this desire to evolve, who’s destiny is in this life to attain enlightenment or to make progress, I would suggest a book you may not yet have seen …the book was given to me by my teacher on my first visit to India – it was written by Robert S. de Ropp, and is called The Master Game, Pathways to Higher consciousness (1968), it is available on Amazon.

Background for the author – from Wikipedia

There are infinite paths to enlightenment, it matters not if you are religious, or not … life alone and the severe life challenges that it can bring to some can take you there, for it is open to all … all paths can lead us to this point, for there is no right way, there is no wrong way … but once we agree and go through this portal, we are still on a journey, for it is not an ending, but a new beginning – now the path for all becomes one – from enlightenment and the levels within it, there is a path to higher consciousness which has plateaus, dead ends, challenges to be overcome, incredible transcendental experiences personal to you (one has to be careful here lest we become lost in this ambrosia, this personal illusory nirvana) and then we are unable to return to the physical world, this will also stop our spiritual evolution) … from enlightenment onwards we truly need a teacher.

Part of enlightenment (in my case anyway) is consciousness, for different levels of consciousness (energy and vibrations) make up the Universe, from those of us who are asleep and exist solely in the material world, to those who do the best they can by living with intent within the material world, will at their time, transition to consciousness … when conscious we feel every life form, from the smallest ant to the largest, within us … like the ripples on a pond we can at will feel life, all life, we are no longer separate from it … at this point, judgement of others became impossible, because one cannot judge … because that involves separation from the other, which it not possible for we are all one … all we can try to do is empathise to understand, then let go and move on.

I write for one reason that if you or another of your family has a yearning or is ready, or may at some point be ready, just imagine once taught, how he or she can guide and lift the consciousness level of your children and perhaps your entire family … all children are born enlightened … the dogma of whatever environment they are within builds walls between who they are (their essence) and the environmental acceptable version of themselves, there are no exceptions to this, we are all destined to evolve in our own time, perhaps one amongst you is at that point, or maybe, they or you will know, for me this came via a yearning in my chest.

As I mentioned, once you have gone through the enlightened portal … a new journey begins .. A journey where we need a Teacher … because the path is narrow and can be fraught with mis-direction and dead ends and more mind created illusions … all courtesy of our personality if you will, the ego mind .. Part of this journey is freeing your self from the control of the ego mind, freeing yourself from fear and from the past, .. How this happens – Remember the old adage, when the student is ready a teacher will appear, it is true, for that is why I am in India.

Remember, the past is only to learn from … rarely if ever to be re-visited … if you find you are … as your own witness at this point, don’t engage with the mind when it brings it back in whatever form… the more you don’t engage with the fears, demons and illusions, the more you will begin to control your own mind and be free of the ego (some ego is necessary to operate in the material world, but under the control of your essence, our true self, not a law unto itself) – your essence (the book may help the person in question here) will become dominate … it will mean, your authentic self will become the master of your life … let go the past, for you are no longer the person you were at some time in the past, we all change and evolve, yet the ego mind seeks to control us, essentially through fear, its weapons also include addictions (in its many forms), dependancies, depression, shame, guilt etc ..it is the greatest creator of illusions.

God or if you prefer the Divine Creator and your own soul knows the challenges you have all witnessed and been part of … you are loved relentlessly and forever … judgement free … the physical world is about learning, for it is only through pain and the learning that comes from it, does our soul evolve …. We evolve in our case by living in earth school, as humanity as a whole evolves slowly to a higher consciousness.

Don’t be concerned if there is no empathy with these worlds, or any yearning by you or others to spiritually evolve, as a member of the human race we will all awaken, in this life or in another.

David Sanders
Dehradun, India

India – Poverty First Impressions.

This is an impression from a Western perspective and so may not give a fair or accurate observation of Poverty here in India, so much here confronts me. I am sure my impression of the physical world here will change as I become familiar, also as my Kundalini rises over time.

Poverty and homelessness is everywhere, in the West it is a cost of Capitalism, of being unemployed and also underemployed, where at any time, one may be one pay check away from it, it comes primarily from Corporate greed, exacerbated by the “Free Trade” agreements which are not at all about free trade but where Governments provide a means for Corporations to move jobs off shore, to other sovereign jurisdictions, that have very low wages and low protection for employees, in the areas of wages, benefits and heath. This desertion of their home country leaves many tens of thousands or millions of people who had jobs, now without any means to live. Here the situation is very complex including the immensity of the population, the lack of education, politics and something that is found in all political systems, corruption.

In India, there is no safety net or any kind, social programs that one experiences, even at the low rate that is in Australia just don’t exist … the quantity in need here is vast, on a cursory examination, there seems no National Government support for the homeless, the poor, the destitute – via food kitchens, shelters, beds or the like. I don’t know as yet the extent of private provision of the same from overseas organisations, I am sure I will given time …

You cannot walk down the street here without seeing the poor, rapier thin bodies begging, one does what one can, it is the mothers and children that my heart goes out to … the mothers ( malnourished ) who are going without so their children will have food … one gives, but then what? Does it only delay an inevitability … but nevertheless we give, but what comes next for them? We cannot know this, all we can do is help in this moment and then move on. The quantity is vast, there are sadly many who may not be in poverty, they are in a business to again make money off the tourists – one can only guess and hope that the deserving get something, so for me I give to the very old, and mothers with children.

To give you an idea, I was walking along the road, when I first arrived and not far from where I am staying, right in front of me in the gutter, was a body of a young man, thin beyond comprehension … he was just lying there, not moving, I could not see him breathing, was he alive or dead, to this day I don’t know.