God and Guru are outdated

Following my recent post: ‘Do real gurus use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, have websites and advertise?’, I received a few comments stating that words like ‘God’ and ‘Guru’ are outdated. And in many ways I agree. Both these words conjure up images of a patriarchal authoritarian culture of religion that is based in blind faith and superstition. However, here was my response to some of those comments:

Tom: I’ve noticed that words are very individual in how one relates to them. Some people are positively allergic to words like God and Guru, others revel in them, and many are somewhere in between.

No matter what words we use or do not use, some people will resonate, some people will not. In my view, we give ourselves the best chance to awaken when we see past the superficiality of the words used and look instead to what they point to.

When I was seeking, I gobbled up all the teachings I could find: theistic, non-theist, new-age, faith-based, understanding-based, practices, no practices – you name it, I was there, looking beyond the words, attempting to discover the substance beneath it.

What do you think? How do you seek (if you seek)? What resonates with you?

Peace to you all

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Ramana Maharshi: Silent power

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Ramana Maharshi rarely left Arunachala for over 50 years and did not seek crowds of people to teach. One time someone asked him:

Question: Why does not Bhagavan [Ramana Maharshi] go about and preach the Truth to the people at large?
Ramana Maharshi: How do you know I am not doing it?*

Another time Ramana was asked:

Question: How can silence be so powerful?
Ramana Maharshi: A realised one sends out waves of spiritual influence, which draw many people towards him. Yet he may sit in a cave and maintain complete silence. We may listen to lectures upon truth and come away with hardly any grasp of the subject, but to come into contact with a realised one, though he speaks nothing, will give much more grasp of the subject. He never needs to go out among the public. If necessary he can use others as instruments.**

❤️   ❤️

*quote taken from Maharshi’s gospel
**quote taken from Conscious Immortality

The importance of suffering and seeking

Most people stop short of the goal

So many people cling to beliefs, either knowingly or unknowingly, caught up in confusion, sometimes teaching it to others.

If you really want truth, would you accept a belief, a concept, an idea? Would you accept second-hand words, teachings and phrases uttered by others? Would you worry about what others think and get preoccupied in puerile semantic debate?

Or would you continue to seek, genuinely investigate, until you have genuinely found, in your own direct experience, the end to your suffering, an end to your seeking?

THIS IS IT

Anyone else think that your personality has to be perfect and that every pore of your being has to exude an energy of loving kindness in order for the Freedom that already is to be realised? What a prison!

With respect to seeking enlightenment, what’s wrong with THIS, right now?

Freedom is already totally completely here.

Stop all this worrying and obsessing over the apparent individual and here it is, full and complete. No need to improve the individual or the world. Then things start to right themselves naturally, according to natural law. Not that you care. It’s just the way it is.

No need to judge and evaluate apparent ‘teachers’ – that’s more obsessing about the apparent individual, the individuality you project onto them.

Now there is nothing wrong with desire to improve oneself or the world. It is quite natural in certain circumstances. The desire to change something happens by itself when it happens. It too is Spontaneous Arising, a part of ‘what is’.

Look! See! Notice! All these phenomena are empty of any independent doer-self-entity.

Freedom is already here. What does it feel like? It feels like THIS. No need to seek a new or better experience, although that too is allowed. THIS IS IT.

Jesus: How to pray

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Alternative translation

“Whenever you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your Father who is hidden. And your Father who sees from the hidden place will reward you.”

(International Standard Version)

Here is the context of the quote:

And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets so that they might be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their recompense.
But you when you pray, enter into your inner room, and having shut your door, pray to your Father, the One in secret. And your Father, the One seeing in secret, will reward you.
And when you pray, do not babble on like pagans, for they think that by their many words they will be heard.
Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.

Matthew 6:5-8