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What is ‘Enlightenment’ anyway?

“Once you are once awakened, you can never fall back asleep again...” But is this true? How, then, do I ‘forget’ the great, life changing ‘truths’ that I’ve learnt and experienced in the past? How did I forget my strength, my independence, my Divine right-ness to simply ‘be’ without shame or fear or guilt...? Did I not ‘know’ it truly? Was my Pride merely skin deep - to be shed when my life and confidence shrank...? Or was I ‘ensorcelled’ as Jamie puts it: entranced and under a spell - lost in a hall of mirrors, of appearances... perhaps it was of my own doing, the curl-up survival instinct of the victimised in order to survive - but in doing so I rebirthed old wounds and traumas that split me from myself and left me compartmentalised, and truly not ‘in my right mind’... And was this the cause and purpose of my Depression? - the mud of my self-inflicted suffering: to shock me out of this sleepwalking fall into dead and unhelpful habits - the headlong rush into ego-self and the pl

Sweet, sweet heart

My own sweet heart Deep in meditation, breathing in the wonderful moment; breath so deep, and sweet, and slow - smiling and easing - in one with the moment; and in the still moment, beneath  the rise and swell of the breath: the gentle upward pull of my own sweet heart, soft beating  in my chest. Thank you, dear heart, for being so steady: for never once giving up, no matter how my head may weep and scream despair - thank you, true heart, for holding faith and holding fast when I could not - thank you, sweet heart, for this steady gift of life and love, through thick and thin, no matter what. Thank you, sweet, sweet heart ❤️ 

“Hope floats”

I realise it’s been a while since that last #depression post - so I just wanted to let people know: I’m doing better... Not ‘well’, still, but the worst of the Storm passed, as it always does, and I survived it, as I always (mostly) do.  And things for me ARE looking more hopeful...: after a year of fighting, I’ve finally been granted Ill Health Retirement, and am being supported in the process of arranging pensions and financial matters that should mean I can continue the therapeutic process without worrying too much about how we’ll live without me able to work; the U.K. is steaming along with the Vaccine roll-out and we’re both just waiting for our vaccine date before Easter; and Spring is already bringing new life and #hope into the garden and the world. Remember: no matter how bleak it appears, whilst there’s breath in your body, there is still hope.  Here’s to ‘passing open windows’ and #travellinghopefully

You do not need permission

“Is that the price? Crawling to Paradise - all the way - on my knees...?” (St Francis and the Jewel Thief) I thank the Sangha of my heart and friends, who have faced my guilt and self-criticism this week, each in their way, and told me me the same important message::  You have the permission to enjoy yourself. You are allowed to take pleasure and enjoyment from what you do: in fact you should enjoy what you do, otherwise why are you doing it? Yoga, meditation, transformative growth - LIFE itself! - these are not penances or punishments for some failure to be ‘Perfect’, ‘holy’, ‘woke’ - they are beautiful opportunities to be reminded that life - especially the fully conscious act of mindful living - is a treasure , to be cherished and savoured with all the innocence and delight of a child’s first Christmas ... You do not need permission: there is no part of you that is not of the Gods, no act of love and pleasure that  you can do that is not a celebration of the Gods and of Life. 

“I can’t go on. I must go on...”

Isn’t it curious: if someone with terminal cancer decides to refuse treatment and let the disease take its natural course, everyone thinks it’s a noble act of bravery - but if someone has suffered for a lifetime with ‘cancer’ of the mind, and decides to quietly put an end to the years of suffering that their disease has caused to themselves and everyone around them - suddenly everyone is full guilt and thinks they’re ‘selfish’ and ‘cowardly’... And I know this is will hurt everyone, and I know you’ll want to try to tell me “you’re loved”, and “you’re special!”, but I’ve already upset Geoff and fucked-off my therapist today, and I’m so full of piss-and-fire and self-loathing right now that I’m barely managing to be civil even with myself, so please excuse me if I go dark for a while whilst I wait to figure out if any of this is worth it anymore. 

The eternal search for Truth...

Back in the ‘80’s there was a TV Programme created by  J. Michael Straczynski which attempted to be both SciFi entertainment, and a profound exploration of the deepest questions about politics, religion, and what it means to be Human. That epic was called Babylon 5, and we spent most of Lockdown rewatching it with our millennial housemate - and blowing his mind. If you’ve not seen it - watch it. Really. Sure, it’s space opera, but the writing and the characterisations and the sweep of science and spirituality is just superb. As an example, I give you this - from when G’Kar becomes an unwilling spiritual leader: ‘What is truth?’ https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=N_oQkSh2lq8 An acolyte askes G'Kar, "What is truth, and what is God" G'Kar replies: "If I take a lamp, and shine it towards the wall, a bright spot will appear on the wall. The lamp is our search for truth, for understanding. Too often we assume that the light on the wall is God. But the light is not the go

You are not alone...

The ‘bone cave’ story is a lie: we are not consciousness trapped inside matter - brains  in the prison of our skulls, sealed away from a world we can only experience by the shadow-play of our senses... We ARE those senses - and the neurones, and the skull the protects them, and the skin around it, and the blood and the heart that feeds them, and the lungs and the belly, and EVERYTHING.  The lonely ego lies to itself: There is no real demarcation between ‘me’, ‘my body’ - no material separation between ‘self’ and ‘the world’; all that there is is the Universe itself!  So when the Darkness tries to tell you: ‘I am nothing. I am alone and I am powerless’ - remember, that it is a symptom of believing the  illusion of separateness... I am not alone. I am not singular - ‘I’ am billions of cells, arising and dying continuously, giving and sharing and working in tireless harmonious community for the good of all - every single one a fractal fragment of the whole, as essential to the whol