When we look into our own minds, we have to wonder where each thought has appeared from. We need to inquire into it’s origin? Also, has it caused limiting beliefs? Does it take away my freedom? Does it stop me from growing? Can I be in awareness with these type of thoughts for long?
If we decided to invest time and look into our mind, understand its nature and see how we can improve it, we would focus on making the most out of our mind – only when we understand that it knows its place, as a friend to my consciousness, not an enemy.
The space of ego is as large as you want it to be, and it can be the tiniest and even non-existent force in your life. It depends on how invested you are in keeping your ego. It is not that you can’t be spiritual if you have an ego. It is just that the vastness of spirituality will be smaller according to the vastness of the ego.
We all know what we need to do to grow, however the time and effort to do so, is totally something else. All I know is that observing the mind is a practice that needs to continue and continue, until it becomes clear on what the mind actually is.
There was once a king, who heard the sweet song of a bird. A bird that was able to fly to different branches of different trees, roam in the clear blue sky or thunderous showers. It could see the whole world with it’s wings whenever it wanted. It enjoyed its freedom. However, the King was in love with the birdsong and wanted to hear it every morning.
The King’s Assistant caught the bird and placed it in a golden cage filled with diamonds, and other precious stones. However, the bird didn’t like the cage because he couldn’t fly and this deeply upset him. He would weep and the King thought the bird was singing a beautiful song and was immensely happy. Unknown to the King, he felt the bird appreciated the golden cage and precious gems, who wouldn’t love it?
One day, the King’s Assistant was assigned to clean the cage, whilst doing so, at the most opportune moment, the bird flew out and didn’t look back. He flew to the nearest branch, he could find.
Watching all this was a parrot and the parrot was annoyed at the bird and said to him, ‘What are you thinking? You had such an amazing home, you had to just sing beautiful songs for the King and you was given a golden cage. You are an idiot for giving up those precious gems. You didn’t even take one out when you left. You have lost everything with your so-called freedom’
The bird listened and after giving some thought, he replied to the parrot, ‘You may live in the cage if you like it so much but I prefer the freedom of roaming in the sky, living day by day and being happy because I am alive.’
Before the bird was intending to finish, the parrot flew inside the cage.
The moral of this story is that we as human beings love to be caged under doctrines, repeat whatever isn’t our own experience, we bound ourselves under religion, nationality, race, gender and color. If by some chance, someone decides to be free, to tread on a path that no one is willing to walk upon, we think they are crazy. However, if we really want the Truth, if we really want enlightenment then we have to do it alone and be willing to live moment to moment, whatever it brings. Yesterday, today and tomorrow will be the same for the parrot in the gems-filled, golden cage. However, every day brings in a new possibility for the bird that found it’s freedom again.
Likewise, if we are stuck on a body level only, then we will only be subject to the laws of the physical. If we choose to let go of this cage of the mind, invest time in thinking, in inquiring about what stops us from living the truth then we can truly transcend the time and live as consciousness, a pure awareness, as the Formless.
As I sat in contemplation last night at a gathering last night, I kept thinking of the words in the title of this blog – Freedom in the Formless. It felt like an inner voice guiding me that I had to write about this and explore what it meant.
I regularly attend a spiritual gathering and the fundamental teaching is that we are all formless and that we can understand this by understanding that the world that we see around us is eventually formless when we break it all down. When we know that beyond the universe is formless, we can contemplate within that we are also Formless.
I find this to be a very powerful thought, which in the beginning it simply is a thought. Then as we begin to contemplate on it, meditate on it, we slowly begin to feel like the Formless and then we become Formless. The closest material to the Formless is love. In fact, love helps us a lot in spirituality. My wife is amazing at helping me grow spiritually and ensuring that I don’t remain stagnant. She is a perfect mirror for me and every time I think of her, I am overwhelmed with this sense of unconditional love. I don’t know why I love her, I just do. I don’t mean to be all romantic here, but simply stating we can feel spiritual concepts within our own homes and that my wife has allowed me to dive back into my spirituality.
The one thing that I love is when I express how I feel about the day with my wife, I express my emotions and I have slowly seen how anger is slipping away from me. There was a time maybe in 2013/2014 where I didn’t experience anger at all. It just never happened. Many things could have stirred that anger but I was so drenched in my experiences of the Formless, anger just couldn’t rise. I didn’t overcome it, I let it rest for a while.
Then in 2017, my anger started coming back. Questions appeared and no answers were good enough. The problem was not about the answers that people gave, they gave the best answers they could but I had the answers within me all the time. However, I didn’t have the time to look at my own answers. I was angry with the world, angry with the circumstances and most of all, angry at the lack of love. Which is hilarious when I think about it, being angry at the lack of love. However, it felt so true at the time. I couldn’t understand how far we stepped back when it came to following spiritual principles that were held on to so tightly like love, understanding, forgiveness and acceptance.
Yesterday, while talking to my wife, I expressed that there was a time in my life when I didn’t get angry. I would raise my voice a little but it never grew into anger. I stayed calm for most of the time as I was so aware of my own self. My wife very beautifully asked – “But you meditated a lot back then?” and I replied that I did and that I used to wake up at 4am in the morning and meditate for an hour (Thank you Dad for waking me up at 4am). I got rid of a lot of the emotions that disturbs the peace of humans. However, in 2017 and especially 2018, my anger and those other disturbing emotions came back again. The only answer was and is a lack of meditation and awareness that I am formless. Not conceptually but experientially.
It has been in recent times that I have noticed my anger has been a regular visitor to my consciousness. It feels like a guest that has overstayed its welcome. I keep showing it the door but it keeps staying for yet another night. The only reason this happens is because I choose to let the Formless stay out for another night.
Although, I haven’t spoken much about what freedom in the formless means but this is reflective of a past that was good but a present that has all the possibility of becoming better. All that is needed is for me to go into that wisdom that shows me that within me, it is all Formless. In this vast experience, where is anger, jealousy, greed, lust or pride? These tiny specks of the human experience have enlarged themselves so much that they live in the majority of our days. I feel it is a time to bring an end to that. How do we do that? Awareness, we need to become aware of our own awareness.
How much am I aware in the day that my body is Formless? How much am I aware in the day that my mind is Formless? How much am I aware in the day that I am simply the Formless? In fact, how much am I aware that there is nothing but the Formless? Do I dive into these contemplations everyday? Maybe we should try it out for a week. See how it goes and what happens. It is an experiment where the only thing you could lose is your ego – the nucleus of all the negative emotions.
Let’s come back to this next week and share what we have discovered.
Temptation is annoying. Damn annoying and the annoying thing about this is the fact that you are in control of your temptations. What is it that triggers the temptation? What then fuels this temptation? Obviously, thought always gives energy to temptation or to anything that we wish to remove ourselves from.
Being on a vegan diet is difficult as it is. I recently went into Waitrose (I am not middle class) and they do quite a bit for us vegan peeps. They had these ginger – chocolately biscuit bites and they are pretty yum. However, I have put them in the freezer and I want one. I could give in to temptation as I salivate about them now or prove determination over temptation. Today, I wanted to avoid sweet things and wanted a healthy day. Trust me, when chocolate is scarce already then all you can think about is chocolate.
Temptation happens in all parts of life. The temptation to look at an attractive woman or come across an amazing and beautiful woman on instagram or facebook, especially the ones you know and you have that desire to pursue that temptation and then reality sticks its nose in it and it is all over. You start thinking of reasons why it cannot and should not work. You think of the last time she rejected you and stopped talking to you and mentioning how hot she looks may literally be the last nail in the coffin to any possibility of ‘something’ later. What is this ‘something’ beats me.
When I am meditating, I feel like putting my attention and awareness on the occasional itch on my arm. The itch that never occurs otherwise but suddenly finds it amusing to happen now. You can’t take the intensity of the meditation and 5 seconds feels like 5 hours. How can one be still? The temptation to move gets stronger and stronger. However, your determination wins, your willpower is victorious because no way will you let anything stop you from your goal.
The times when someone ignores you and you just want to tell them that it isn’t cool. They have posted on Facebook, Instagram or whatever. Nowadays, snapchat easily shows someone opening your post thing and they don’t reply to it. Sad times! However, why should people reply? That is attention seeking. My existence isn’t worth the response of every single person. It is mad and I don’t respond to everyone’s and that is because I think my life is the best! Madness I tell you!
Temptation is crazy and yet, it is what makes you grow. Be happy that you are tempted because it shows that you can make your willpower stronger and stronger. It is a gym session for your willpower. Temptation can be made positive if you want it to. And if temptation wins then so what. Sometimes, eating that ginger biscuit chocolate bite thing may make you happy. Telling that one woman that you have secretly been attracted to her can be the beginning of a blossoming relationship. Scratching that itch may help you get back to meditation and moving may make your bottom feel less numb! Also, telling those people not to ignore you may create a conversation that will eventually change your life. I know it does sound incredibly ideal but let’s be real, whatever was once ideal has become a reality. I remember being a kid and thinking about cameras on mobile phones being revolutionary! So things can be done.
Whatever it is that tempts you right now and you see a spark of positivity in it then go for it. If it doesn’t work out then fair enough, their loss aswell as yours!
Hope everyone is well. I have not posted something in a long time so first of all, accept my apologies.
I have been a little busy at the moment, I have been working on my new poetry book which is set to release in late July this year. I am currently in the editing stages and I am enjoying it every moment of it.
This post is a very simple one. I feel at times, life has another plan for us and we force our will on what life should be like. Why do we do this? The simple reason is because we can never be content with reality. So instead of being attentive to reality, we divert our attention and focus on what should have happen and continue to wonder how we can make it happen. The thing is your will can be achieved, what you want can be achieved and the answer lies in reality. Otherwise, you will be living in the past looking to achieve something with little clues and little motivation.
It is not a coincidence that most mystics have talked about living in the present moment. There must be something about it and from experience, I can say that it is has been beneficial for me. It has guided me to new discoveries that I wish I had discovered before. Some of you may remember that I used to do youtube videos and I stopped them a while back and then deleted them. The main reason was that my discoveries had a continuous refining quality and slowly and slowly I am becoming a new man or shall I say a more evolved being. Therefore, when it comes to spiritual matters, it is best to remain silent and then decide to speak.
At times, we think we are doing the right thing and what really is the right thing? All it is, is our limited perception. Our consciousness is limited and therefore cannot even comprehend everything life can offer. We lack both imagination and reality. We live in the past, even facts of the past and make it sound as if they have some significance for today. The only way to bliss is through contentment and balance in all circumstances. The only way to access bliss is through the present moment. Life has a lot to give to you, just do not limit it with your expectations and your unpolished vision. Be more present and your vision will be more clear.
Let life be more mysterious, answers will only make life less adventurous and more monotonous.
I had a thought, can I call it a thought or shall I say revelation? Hear this out: ‘If you know the Truth then you don’t know. You can only be in knowing of the Truth.’
I probably could say the last sentence with greater clarity but I shall explain this a little now. Whenever, you come to a point and say ‘I know the Truth’ that cannot be the Truth speaking. It can only mean that you have given up knowing or desiring to know more. Instead, you have made the Truth a possession and you cannot possess the Truth. It cannot be grasped nor seen but it creates a great amount of intensity within you. It creates something intimate, where the feelings overflow into something magnificent. So the state of what is called enlightenment is the discovery of knowing. Knowing is everlasting, it is infinite and therefore cannot be grasped by thought. If it is, it creates memory and memory cannot be the Truth. Truth is always new, always fresh and pleasant as it is created from wisdom. Truth is freedom. Memory is distorted and can lead to illusion as it is base is knowledge or just mere words on a paper. Memory is a prison.
Therefore, meditation must be treated as a ground for inner enquiry and discovery. It is easy to say there is a God or there is a soul. But has this very discovery been your own? Never be comfortable with any idea. The Truth is never comfortable because it implies knowing which leads to internal growing. Remember, knowing is a verb, it is action. And to know really means you knew. If you know something today then tomorrow it may be something different. Therefore, this means you ‘knew’, you don’t ‘know’ it. You have to think about this. This might sound a little too intellectual but if you let this settle within you, enquire within you, be part of this whole discussion then something great can be discovered. Can you know God? Can you know the Truth?
I shall keep this post nice and small so you may think about it.
Gratitude to the Formless that resides in all hearts! I wanted to write about music and meditation/prayer. Real prayer is meditation and meditation is real prayer. In sanskrit, they call it dhyana. Meditation is a very cold word to use compared to the sanskrit word. I love the word dhyana because in the sanskrit, there is a sense of union. A union between you and Existence, you and the Divine and you and God. I use God because it is a common term. We all pray to God but do we know God? Worst still, some of us have Gurus or Gods that we worship and can we say we know them? And truly knowing them is loving them, truly merging with them is the only worship.
I want to tell you a story. A Hare Krishna devotee once asked me ‘Do you know Krishna, can I meet Him?’ When he asked me, I looked into his eyes deeply and saw whether he was genuine and trust me, some people are good actors too! I replied ‘What would you do if you met Krishna? What would you say to Him?’ He looked rather confused at my question and said ‘I would like Krishna to answer my prayers.’ I laughed because now I understood what he was trying to do. I shook my head and said ‘It is better you still repeat ‘Hare Krishna, Hare Rama’ because if I let this meeting take place, you will destroy everything. Don’t ask me again until you deeply inquire within why I will not allow this meeting to take place.’ I ended it there and you must be wondering why? But before I disclose why…take a few moments to think why!
So why did I say no? First of all, he was sort of challenging Krishna. He doesn’t truly worship nor love Krishna. In your case, you may not truly worship nor love your Guru or God(s) or Goddess(-es). Plus, his challenge was weak to Krishna, he wanted Krishna to answer his prayers. Now, to you it does not look like a bad thing but it is a sin in my opinion. Now, Krishna can easily say ‘No’ and this person, because he truly has not worshipped, he has not surrendered, he has not accepted, he has not loved will pretend to be ‘heartbroken’ and will lose his ‘belief’! Remember, I have not said faith! Faith is above belief, faith is based on acceptance and knowing. Think and inquire, whether every cell of your body wants to meet the Divine, to meet the Ultimate Reality, to meet God. If this meeting takes places, enlightenment is at your feet!
Now, for those that find meditation difficult, it is essential to put some music on. It is best if it is spiritual music of course and preferably without words. Meditate with eyes closed, concentrate on each breath and take your God’s name in the outtake of the breath. So exhale and take your God’s name or Guru’s name. Music is the union of sound and instrument. Meditation is the union between your mind and the Ultimate Reality. There is an inner world that needs to be discovered and this is your chance now!
I will keep this post short and somewhat incomplete. If you have questions, just post them underneath but better still, meditate!