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This Relationship of Presence


The relationship of presence has a complex connection to the continuum of usefulness and uselessness. This relationship has no purpose, although a purpose may be fulfilled through it. This relationship has no goal or aim, although goals and aims may be reached through it. This relationship has no meaning outside of itself, beyond itself, although meaning may be fulfilled through it.

This relationship of deep stillness, teaching, love, compassion, and acceptance is the basis for my healing therapy. It is the basis for any truly healing therapy and it should be mandatory training for counselors, therapists, and healers in whatever practice or discipline they follow.

This way of present relationship leads you to a deep spirituality, a being state that has nowhere to go and everywhere to go at the same time. It is quite beyond words.

Let us pause for a minute. Look at the appeals of modern day, so-called spirituality and we can see that it is materialistic in content. To have more contentment, relaxation, material belongings, to participate in a better relationship, have more holidays, more space and time, more inner peace. Whatever the reward, whatever the payoff, just the simple fact of advertising a payoff gives the lie to the practice and reveals its spiritual inauthenticity. Spiritual practice per se has no payoff. How could it have when it is the realignment, the journey to your very self, a self that is truer than anything to you have ever experienced before

Observe the blessing in crisis. Only when everything in the outside world has disappointed you, do you turn in with sufficient earnestness and make the inner journey authentically.

This is deep psychology and deep spirituality. Either you have been here or you have not. You must turn from all your hopes and aspirations for the outer world to satisfy you, to fulfill you, or to make you happy.

This happens through disappointment, setback, disillusionment, and dark periods in our inner development. We may not appreciate the importance or accept the gift of these troublesome times when they are happening. We may later wish that we had treasured them at the time they appeared in our lives-these changing "seasons of our interior year" are most precious gifts of life and wisdom, as the great poet Rilke understood and expressed so very beautifully in the Duino Elegies in which he wrote:

Someday, emerging at last from this terrifying vision, may I burst into jubilant praise to assenting angels! May not even one of the clear-struck keys of the heart fail to respond through alighting on slack, doubtful, or broken strings! May a new-found splendor appear in my streaming face! May inconspicuous weeping flower! How dear you will be to me you dark nights of suffering, and be remembered with love. Why did I not, inconsolable sisters, more bendingly kneel to receive you, more loosely surrender myself to your loosened hair? We wasters of sorrows! How we stare away into sad endurance beyond them, trying to foresee their end. They are nothing but our winter's foliage, our sombre evergreen, one of the seasons of our interior year-and not only season, but place, settlement, camp, soil and dwelling.

Of course you should go on with your life (and I point this out because this is the question most often asked about this) your job, your family, your friends, and your creative and recreational pastimes. All have their roles to play. You don't change them. There is no need to change anything. You simply bring your attention inside to your inner world and you pursue your authenticity there... in the place where you will find it at last.

I never tire of pointing out this one simple yet crucial point. There is a soul and there is a spirit. You participate in both of them. Now your soul connects you to the earth, to the mud, to the planet and through the souls sense, sight, touch, smell, and so on, you experience life and you revel in life and you if you are sensitive, aware, and sensitive with resonance and empathy, and particularly if you can think a bit less, you can enter into an advanced stage of unity or elation or even human ecstasy. This is not the spiritual event. This is not the divine occurrence. These are the heights that your soul can reach. Your soul can reach very high levels of pleasurable, even apparently transcendent, experience, but they are not transcendental, not spiritually transcendent. They are usually transcendent of mind and they are not in and of themselves Divine at all. Anyone, an atheist, an agnostic, a non-believer, a sleeper, even a death-seeker, may attain an elevated soul state, usually for a limited amount of time. You as a spiritual seeker, a meditator, a practitioner of awareness, and an adherent of the inner path may reach this elevate soul experience, but it is not in and of itself in any way spiritual, spiritually transcendent or Divine. It is not of that order, however wonderful it may be and the understanding therefore that deep spirituality is an altogether different order of Reality-in fact it is Reality-is one of the sacred-spiritual truths we should be aware of and strive to preserve.

Daniel J Boorstin has said, "The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge." In the modern world the 21st century nothing could be truer in the realms of psychology and spirituality. Perhaps it is a sign of the times. These times are the kaliyuga the most intense time of the darkening of the light.

But we can hold a light even in the great darkness that surrounds us, knowing that we are connected to the wondrous source. There's nothing useful about the All, neither is there anything not useful; it simply IS.

When you transcend this world of appearances you leave behind the value and concept of usefulness. As the Bhagavad Gita teaches, the enlightened human being experiences no attachment to the results of his actions. He is not projecting himself forward to the goal of his work, for him there is no difference between the useful and the useless.

The Taoists are more enigmatic as befits their culture and character. They merely take the opposite of useful and apply it to Tao. The Tao is the useless tree. It is like a pendulum extending to its furthest reach in one direction; once it attains the extreme it can only return to its opposite side.

Spiritual baptism is being in-filled with the Divine. The spirit of the Divinity is poured through you from the top of your head, the sahasrara, to the base of your spine, the muladhara. The physical experience is ecstatic, the psychological experience is releasing and totally liberating. It can happen during a period of spiritual practice and it may happen completely unexpectedly. Perhaps in the physical presence of a spiritual master, in nature, or in the middle of a busy street. It is utterly unpredictable.The feeling of homecoming is so profound that you are completely divorced from utilitarian life. Life as effort or striving disappears and a profound inner peace fills you from within.

Source by Richard G Harvey


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