Bob O’Hearn is my newly invited guest in ‘The Dawn Within’. Bob has a number of blogs and his writings were somewhat influential when I took on the journey of writing myself. I found his essays particularly crafted and it’s a pleasure to share here with you one of them: ‘The Mystique of Freedom’, excerpted from his blog ‘The Conscious Process’. Bob lives with his Beloved Mate, Mazie, in the foothills of the Northern California Sierra Nevada Mountains.
“Pleasure and pain alternate.
Happiness is unshakable.
What you can seek and find is not the real thing.
Find what you have never lost,
find the inalienable.”
~ Sri Nisargadatta
In the vast library cataloguing exceptional human experiences, daunting adventures, and intriguing explorations, the tales of humanity’s search for spiritual liberation are some of the more compelling, and have even formed the basis for most of the world’s religions and philosophies. We all love a good story!
However, as fascinating as the reports may be — these bold testimonies of spiritual heroes and heroines persevering through all manner of adversity to finally attain the pinnacle of human potential, pull the sword from the rock, and ascend blissfully beyond the dreary fate of ordinary mortals — the actual truth is that they are all based on a fundamental case of mistaken identity.
It’s not so much that they have often been seriously ‘airbrushed’ (although that is a regrettable though all too common fate of many of these hagiographies), but rather that they were embarked upon under false pretenses from the beginning. That many of these characters burst out laughing in recognition of that fact at the culmination of their quest does provide a saving grace element to the reports. Let’s examine why. …
Continue reading Bob O’Hearn’s essay… (READ MORE…)
A monk asked:
« What is the true path on earth? »
« Not a single path on earth is true. »
~ Fayan Wenyi
I’d like to tell you a story, a parabolic tale I wrote long ago. It’s a story that has already been posted here on its own. It is called ‘The Truth Seeker’, but could have been called ‘The Path’, as it exposes, describes some of the stages we find along the spiritual path. This expression has been used, overused in spiritual circles. There seems to be so many paths, so many avenues of understanding. The Christian path, the Sufi path, the Advaita path, the tantric path, the direct path, the progressive path. The story that I’m about to tell you was written in Madras, on the grounds of the Theosophical Society, where the young Krishnamurti was ‘discovered’. Twenty years later, he rejected all organisations built around him and pronounced these famous words: “I maintain that Truth is a pathless land, and you cannot approach it by any path whatsoever, by any religion, by any sect.” So what is this path we so often hear about? What is its reality? The title ‘The Truth Seeker’ gives us a clue. It would be reasonable to say that a path, spiritually speaking, is everything that results from the activity of seeking truth. That’s one way of seeing it, but in that case, as seeking can be endless and so often leading nowhere, such a path is really not a path at all. Let’s see what our story has to say:
« A man, Admita, was living in a harsh and hostile desert. Surrounded by sand and swirling winds, he led a life of wandering without help or hope. He has well heard of stories that described places of lush greenery and great beauty, where valleys, forests, meadows, rushing streams and great rivers were home for countless animals, where mountains stood above deep blue seas, where the sun was warm and the air filled with a gentle breeze. He did not believe that such places really existed, but in front of so much loneliness and adversity, he could not help thinking about it and hoping to discover this wonderful land. » …
A playful exploration into the nature of the spiritual path (READ MORE…)
long time ago, in India, lived a man named Admita. All his life had been spent in a harsh and hostile desert, surrounded by sand and dry, swirling winds. He led a life of wandering without help or hope on this desolate land. He had well heard of stories that described places of lush greenery and great beauty, where valleys, forests, meadows, rushing streams and great rivers were home for countless animals, where mountains stood above deep blue seas, where the sun was warm and friendly and the air ever filled with a cool and gentle breeze. He did not believe that such places really existed, but in front of so much loneliness, sorrow, and adversity, he could not help thinking about it and hoping to discover this wonderful land.
One day, one hot, scorching, blazing day, when winds were competing to torment the atmosphere, he thought that truly his last hour had come, for there was no hope of ending the killer storm. Suddenly, in the midst of swirling sand grains, he realised that he was standing right on the edge of a vast, profound precipice. He saw that there was a green carpet on the floor down below; he sniffed the air that was sweet and he could hear thousands of sounds, whispers, and cries of great beauty. “Surely,” he thought, “it must be that marvelous land that the stories mention.”
A short fairy story, a spiritual parable (READ MORE…)