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Ants are busy imprinting information on the collective unconscious, or Akashic Records, or holographic universe, or Zero Point Field, or however you want to label it, of what it feels like to live in a 3 dimensional + 1 time Universe. What time and space feel like when you are an ant, what it feels like to be an ant, what life is like when you are an ant. The whole Universe is conscious, God is One.

I'm still going to squish them.

“This is what you contemplate: the origin of suffering is attachment to desire.”

(This above quote from linked Buddhist website).

Please do not contemplate that suffering is attachment to desire. Contemplate that attachment to misguided desire due to our unawareness causes much suffering.

Attachment is a symptom of ignorance. The origin of suffering is ignorance or another term for ignorance is unawareness. Due to our unawareness we often fail to discern truth. A research project I conducted on the Internet with 32 temples I asked the following question.

“What is the origin of suffering?”

Fifteen Buddhist monks responded which is a very good return rate. Eleven said attachment was the origin of suffering. One monk said that desire was the origin of suffering. Three monks said that ignorance was the origin of suffering.

The three that said that ignorance was the origin of suffering were correct. Attachment, craving, grasping, and *“misguided” desire are symptoms of ignorance. It is very very common to confuse symptoms with origins or root causes.

**Now here is what the Buddhists miss. Without that ignorance there is no us. If Infinite created/manifested Infinite there would be no perceived unique personalities. The enlightened Hindus knew about the origin of suffering centuries before the Buddha realized the origin of suffering.

Buddha’s contribution is the path to reduce or eliminate suffering hence to stop rebirth. And to his credit that was his goal in life when he saw suffering for the first time as a young man.

*Desire is not the origin of suffering; in fact desire for or longing for Oneness is what moves us to seek greater degrees of love and compassion. It is misguided desire that we often mistake for evil and sin.

**These comments in no way suggest that one should not study or follow Buddhism. It is a profound religion but it is a religion. Its teachings on consciousness and reducing suffering are supreme.

Another quote from the linked website on Buddhism.

“The path to the cessation of suffering is the path of perfection.”

From my point of view this is a correct statement as all suffering has to some degree imperfection. Another term for this *imperfection could be unawareness or ignorance. When we have something less that perfect awareness we will miss the mark (sin) and then often suffering follows this missing the mark or target.

What the Christians call sin are really imperfections without knowledge that those imperfections are necessary for them to exist as perceived unique personalities. No imperfections no us.

· Some synonyms for imperfection are as follows: flaw, defect, deficiency, blemish, fault, limitation, and failing.

Flaw, defect, deficiency, blemish, fault, limitation, and failing all have one thing in common: Ignorance. Now the origin of that ignorance is innocence but that is another story.

Art's Four Noble Truths:

#1. Being alive means experiencing separation.
#2. Separation is an inherent property of the physical Universe.
#3. Separation teaches the soul what it means to be separate.
#4. There is no separation in Heaven.

Once a baby is born, can it be unborn? Once you become a separate, unique consciousness or soul, can you quit being a separate, unique, individual?

It may be impossible to learn what it means to be separate, unique, individual in Heaven, but once the soul is imprinted with that information, it will never lose that information. The soul may have to come to Earth or the Physical Universe to learn about separation, but once that is accomplished it can shed the physical body and go back to heaven and maintain it's sense of uniqueness.

"I was unique yet I was the tiniest part of the whole." - excerpt from Mark Horton's NDE, http://www.mindspring.com/~scottr/nde/markh.html

Sort of like a cell phone; once that frequency is separated out from all the rest it becomes a separate unique cell phone, with it's own separate, unique number, but it can still call and access all the other cell phones in the world, even though its' own unique cell phone.

As you eat your bacon you begin to experience separation. After all your bacon is completely gone you experience sadness that it is all gone; and we know that the more emotional the experience the more powerful and long lasting the memory it creates. But you can rejoice because your bacon is not really all gone. We get it all back. Everything that exists in this life is waiting for us in the next life. Separation is an illusion. It's a holographic universe thing.

Bill I.'s Commentary on Art's Four Noble Truths (21st Century -- found on a resurrected computer hard drive buried in the rubble of an Internet temple):

Art's Four Noble Truths:

#1. Being alive means experiencing separation.

It's possible to experience a lack of separation while alive. The techniques for doing so aren't at all difficult to learn and practice. Although some claim there is an ultimate universal variation of such an experience above and beyond "degrees," this is something best determined by any particular experimenter.

#2. Separation is an inherent property of the physical Universe.

Not so. Separation is merely a particular form of perception associated with the egoic self. There is nothing "wrong" with such perception, although anyone who restricts their awareness to it misses a much larger and fuller picture. Meanwhile, each person creates their own unique physical continuum in conjunction with certain shared assumptions peculiar to the overall physical realm (e.g. time, space, gravity); physical perception is simultaneously a major part of the mechanism of this creation.

All of this can be tested by a "separate" person.

This isn't solipsism, a fact that can be verified by group work, but the usual assumptions regarding what is or isn't "objective" must be drastically modified.

#3. Separation teaches the soul what it means to be separate.

This is one experience of all possible experience. "Teaches" implies teachers and teaching. There are degrees of separation, too; what, for example, distinguishes one soul from another? Unique experience.

#4. There is no separation in Heaven.

Heaven? What's that? The very word suggests a separate place, but how could this be, particularly when "place" is a physical term?

Bill I.

One thing I've learned or am in the process of learning over the years; if you are going to participate on online message boards and blogs you need to have a thick skin because it's almost 100% guaranteed that someone will disagree with you.

I just chalk it all up to experiencing more "duality and separation." And my soul thanks you for those lessons!

I don't know what Heaven is, but I don't think of it as a physical place. I would say a condition, unity with God. And I don't think of Him the way Richard Belzer put it as a "bronze age sky God" or as a white man with a long beard. God appeared to Moses as a fire within a bush, not as a man with a beard, and he said his name was I AM. God does not get anthropomorphized in Christianity until Christ. Interestingly, when Genesis says that God created man in his own image, it says He created male and female in His own image. And God is also there referenced as "us" as in "Let us make man in our image."

I think the Chinese Taoists would recognize some truth in that.

Separation is merely a particular form of perception associated with the egoic self. There is nothing "wrong" with such perception, although anyone who restricts their awareness to it misses a much larger and fuller picture --Bill I

Perhaps pushing it a bit far, Bill? Most mystic experiences are reported to be brief. William James said they have:
#1. Ineffability
#2. Noetic Quality (experiencing profound truths)
#3. Passivity (receptive embrace of the divine influx)
#4. Transiency (ie. they last briefly, have a spontaneous evanescence before fading into the light of common day.)

In that sudden opening of a window to another reality, as in the fleeting moments of poetic apprehension received in a state of intoxication, he says such states give evidence of an intrinsic "mystical faculty of human nature, usually crushed to death by the cold facts and dry criticism of the sober hour".

Anyone who can keep up a sense of mystery, timelessness, indescribable awe and unity for long periods would be one person in a million, or one in a billion –perhaps even a Buddha in the making.

I must have sympathy with Art’s views on the importance of separation. If I did not, I would not spend so much time pursuing my own agenda.

Please do not contemplate that suffering is attachment to desire. Contemplate that attachment to misguided desire due to our unawareness causes much suffering.

The site I linked to makes this point. Here's one quote:

This practice of Dhamma is not one of hating oneself for having such thoughts, but really seeing that these are conditioned into the mind. They are impermanent. Desire is not what we are but it is the way we tend to react out of ignorance when we have not understood these Four Noble Truths in their three aspects. We tend to react like this to everything. These are normal reactions due to ignorance.

Moi: "Separation is merely a particular form of perception associated with the egoic self. There is nothing "wrong" with such perception, although anyone who restricts their awareness to it misses a much larger and fuller picture."

Ben: "Perhaps pushing it a bit far, Bill?"

Maybe, Ben.

Ben: "Most mystic experiences are reported to be brief. William James said they have:
#1. Ineffability
#2. Noetic Quality (experiencing profound truths)
#3. Passivity (receptive embrace of the divine influx)
#4. Transiency (ie. they last briefly, have a spontaneous evanescence before fading into the light of common day.)"

As much as admire and respect Professor James, I'm not convinced anyone's rules necessarily apply to mystical experience, whether those of James, Buddha, Ramptha, or anyone else.

All I know is my own experience, while I know of that of others', to the extent that their attempts to convey this have been successful.

I've certainly had a number of unusual experiences over the course of many years and might consider these "mystic."

Some had quite a duration, from minutes to days.

Ben: "In that sudden opening of a window to another reality, as in the fleeting moments of poetic apprehension received in a state of intoxication, he says such states give evidence of an intrinsic "mystical faculty of human nature, usually crushed to death by the cold facts and dry criticism of the sober hour"."

BTW -- have you had a chance to read _The Afterdeath Journal of an American Philosopher: The World View of William James_ by Jane Roberts?

Everything written by James is uniquely his but also reflects a life lived in a particular time and place, a particular education, a particular family upbringing, and so on.

In some ways, 2008 is quite different from, say, 1909, while anyone who grew up in, say, the 50s, in the U.S. would very likely have experiences quite different from James'.

"Crushed to death," "dry facts," "cold criticism," and so on reflect a unique viewpoint at a particular time and place.

"Anyone who can keep up a sense of mystery, timelessness, indescribable awe and unity for long periods would be one person in a million, or one in a billion –perhaps even a Buddha in the making."

I believe this is a great exaggeration.

While continuously maintaining such a condition _would_ be a great feat, learning to create it from time to time, over and over, is not so difficult at all.

Mysticism is still in great need of demystification.

Bill I.

I must have sympathy with Art’s views on the importance of separation. If I did not, I would not spend so much time pursuing my own agenda.

"Anyone who can keep up a sense of mystery, timelessness, indescribable awe and unity for long periods would be one person in a million, or one in a billion, perhaps even a Buddha in the making.
I must have sympathy with Art’s views on the importance of separation. If I did not, I would not spend so much time pursuing my own agenda. - Ben

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

LOL! So far this morning I vacuumed the whole house, scrubbed both bathrooms, a tub and shower stall, two commodes and two sinks, put up all the clean dishes out of the dishwasher and dish drainer, and swept the kitchen floor, and then hauled a load of trash to the dump. I am retired, a househusband, grocery shop, cook, do dishes, clean, run errands, post office, bank, pick up nephew and niece from school, trips to the dentist and doctors, etc. I lead a very mundane fairly normal life and believe me, my mystical musings are limited. I do try and read 2 or 3 chapters a day in one of my "life after death" books.

“The site I linked to makes this point. Here's one quote:”

Thanks for the reply. I realize I must be very careful how I use the word desire. Maybe a better term is longing or yearning than misguided desire as some spirits from the other side state.


“We can allow desire to be the way it is and so begin to let go of it. Desire has power over us and deludes us only as long as we grasp it, believe in it and react to it.”

Again it depends on our operational definition of a word. If desire is looked at as craving or grasping or wanting or not wanting then that could be labeled as misguided desire. If desire is looked at as longing, one could say that all consciousness that has reached a level of a perceived self without perfect awareness have a longing for perfect awareness.

All souls will not stop longing until they reach a level of perfect awareness. Of course some souls take longer than others. I suspect it is the spirit within that longs for its completeness. But all along the spirit is complete. That is the paradox of life. At least for me it is a paradox. Those that say we are already everything we need to be are talking about spirit not our level of soul development or our human ego.

Now how do we recognize that perfect awareness that is within us as spirit? It appears through experiences that allow us to have revelations that lead to the realizations of truths. Maybe just maybe those experiences are how an Oneness most call God expresses itself in a dynamic way. Would not perfect infinite awareness be static as Oneness? Ignorance (unawareness) is a necessary condition for Oneness to become twoness or infinite expressions of its creative ability.

It also appears that an evolutionally process of consciousness (nature) allows life forms to be ignorant (unaware) of their divine nature and not have perfect awareness, at least for a period of sequences of events we call time. We are longing to return home; of course we have never left home only in perception. But oh what a perception.

I am please you are enjoying the tea.

Buddhism is like salt. Every religion is better with a little Buddhism sprinkled on.

Buddhism doesn't just preach love, humility, and selflessness the way other religions do. Buddhism teaches meditation, mindfulness, and the eightfold path which cause those traits to develop in the practitioner.

“Buddhism is like salt. Every religion is better with a little Buddhism sprinkled on.”

Very well stated. It was Buddhism and Hinduism that allowed me to think deeply about the origin of suffering. But it was while reading the book “ beyond the dream” that it came to me one morning after reading this book many times that the origin of suffering was indeed ignorance. Dr. Hora saw the causal correlation of suffering and ignorance the very best.

Then I decided to see if I could find out why ignorance is so abundant on earth. It took six years but it finally came to me. All of creation is relative. It has to be relative to be a creation process that expresses its perfect awareness from oneness to infinite life forms that perceive themselves as unique and separate which demands some level of unawareness.

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