Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Dissolving emotions

Working so closely with Nick Roach allows me to see his ideas working frequently around me. His dissolving emotions practice, which I remember was directly from his teacher, Barry Long, has cropped up a good few times previously to meeting Nick, and having started the process myself I thought I'd describe it here to relay my own progress.

My friend and original guide Gabriel (now in India) always said you can't run away from yourself, as in if you feel bad you shouldn't try and stop feeling whatever the negative feeling was, but allow it to be experienced fully. OK, I thought it sounded pretty much like bollocks at the time, as I had plenty of other ideas to investigate, but now I've been to a few others much more experienced who say the same thing, I've found it's at the start of all serious spiritual practice. My example was when I was visiting the hospital today. There's more or less the equivalent of sensory deprivation there at times, it's a small geriatric ward and half the patients are only just with us. Having to sit there come hell or high water, I realised that due to the lack of sensory input/distraction, all my fears and worries were allowed to be seen against a pure white screen. But due to the advice I just sat and saw what they really were. And they passed. In fact, the essence of boredom appears to be more on the surface than it appears, and I could sense somewhere that sitting with total boredom for even a few minutes may break through to whatever's behind.

Each step of doing this in my lifetime may build up a store of dissolved nonsense until there is so little left I start to feel the peace behind. I'm certainly ready, like Nick, I've reached the end of my stress-related tether and would rather move to a distant place where I observe any negativity from some way away. My negative emotions are of a professional level, when I'm down I'm really down and when I'm anxious I could panic for England, so if I can dissolve just a few of these by watching them until they run out of energy, he'll have cracked the toughest of nuts with me, and I'll be saying not just that I understand the teaching, but it worked for me, and it can work for everyone. Unlike many spiritual practices, it's pure passivity, and only requires patience. No ideas, complex methods or tricks involved, just sit back and watch. What could be simpler? Maharaji always says the only valuable practices are simple, and the simpler the person the better they work. The intellect is taught that it has to juggle plates while doing handstands in order to succeed. But for the spirit, it's the exact opposite. It just has to be allowed to be, with no interruption or distraction, and then it'll show itself. Meditation is something I'd personally recommend for peace, but if it's enlightenment, you can watch where you are here, now at any time, and if Nick says it may reach enlightenment, then I for one trust what he says until the time may come when it's happened to me as well.

On a professional note, I know my role is a communicator as that's all I've done since leaving college. That's why I write all the time. So if I ever 'get there' spiritually, I don't specifically intend to go and teach, but somehow am managing a similar role now, but with no personal experience of enlightenment, which is the opposite way to the masters. If people do benefit anyway, then I'll be delighted. I have Nick's approval to do this, of course, but I do my best to only quote him more or less directly, and then add my own experiences to it. Nothing is my own teaching as I'm just a student myself. But anyone who's seen Nick's site and advaita groups in general know it's not really guru based. You find a teacher who suits you, but they all know more or less the one thing, and just present it their own ways, with no exclusive claim to be 'the one' you find with other masters. I feel a bit like the new job of teaching assistant now, and though I very much doubt fame is on the list of Nick's ambitions, if he does make it big (which can happen to any spiritual teacher, though I know it's not always related to their success as much as their charisma) I'll have been with him since the early days. Without the internet I expect much more of the work would have to be the face to face I was used to before, but now it's possible to create a network of information searchable for anyone who's interested, as well as a few visitors who come across it and it clicks.

On a final note, I see the phase of repeated stress and though all phases are signs of being 'with the flow' or the phases wouldn't really be noticeable, I'll be very happy when I finally enter a positive one. Preferably women chasing me, just one would do actually if I could choose her.

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