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Friday, January 19, 2018

The Age of Entanglement

Deep down at subconscious level, we are all connected.
There are very few people that understand that and even fewer people that have made that connection at the conscious level.

There are numerous accounts of the past in which this connection has been made.
Finding out who you are, the true original nature of “I“ was enough to awaken you at a higher level of conscious connectivity.

The sudden realization of the true nature of reality would trigger a chain reaction in which the illusion of the material world would collapse and the individual would be freed from the prison of reason reestablishing the natural supremacy of the Spirit over the Ego.

The Zen literature is full of accounts of people, Zen students, that have attained enlightenment, spiritual awakening or Satori, by simply breaking through the illusion of separation and understanding the nonduality nature of oneness.
It looks like that type of awakening is not possible any longer in our times.

I’ve never encountered or heard about another alive human being enlightened at the present time with the exception of few momentary spontaneous enlightenment, the most notorious and documented being the so-called “near-death experience” which I like to call more appropriately “near life experience”
But even these spontaneous enlightenment experiences were not powerful enough to create a permanent conscience change and reverted after a short time to the Ego-consciousness prior to the event, leaving behind only the memories of the awakening.

That means that even for the people that have broken through the illusion of the material world and have made a total connection with the spiritual world at the conscious level, the awakening wouldn't last very long before reverting to the Ego reality set of mind.
This situation is the result of a very strong Ego dominance over our thinking that has exponentially grown in intensity in our time.

Zen Buddhism developed in Japan in the 8th century in a medieval society. 
Since then the world has become increasingly more interconnected and interdependent.
New modes of transportation and communication have made our world shrink. It took years to circumvent the world, and about as long for the news to propagate.
Now going around the globe has become a matter of hours and the news is transmitted at the speed of light to any corner of the globe. In the last decades, the information revolution has connected us 24/7.
We are practically going to bed with our phones and waking up with our phone in the hand. On top of that, the complexity of our social and economic life has also increased. We are in a situation that our brain is overused and have no free time left in the day. Paradoxically all this development has not brought us together but contrary has made us more isolated from each other and tied us stronger to the Ego material world.

You have to physically break away from any social interaction in order to escape the chains of entanglement.
As long as you are a part of the social system, being in this world but not of this world has become an impossibility.


Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Happiness

There is been a continuous fight among the scientists about the human nature. Part of the problem is that our science doesn't understand nuances. For the scientific mind, things are either black or white and anything that cannot be classified scientifically falls out of the scientific understanding.
But life doesn't obey the laws of science. Life is nuanced, infinite in complexity and constantly evolving.
You cannot understand human complexity as a simple play between nature and nurture. Life cannot understand, life can only be experienced.

We are continuously evolving. From the day we are born we are both biologically and spiritually evolving. Even scientists are starting to agree that what we think and feel are having an impact in changing our brain structure and our body functions.
We are continuously and constantly being bombarded with information. Our lives are becoming increasingly complex. The rhythm and pace of our lives continuously accelerating. The pressure on our physical bodies and our minds continuously increasing. The result of all these changes is that we are becoming increasingly stressed, depressed and generally unhappy.

So it is becoming trendy now that people are looking for ways to distress, to live more healthy and in general to be happier.
But what are the ways, what is the path to happiness?
It seems that in spite of spending more time, effort and money in the pursuit of happiness our lives, our relationships and careers are not much better than before.
Happiness is not practicing yoga or going to the gym every day.
Happiness is not chanting and meditating and burning incents and wearing crystals. Happiness is not having a safe space or passing new laws in Congress.

The problem with happiness is that we have been programmed to believe that happiness is something coming from the outside world, that happiness is something that you can "get".
We constantly see "happy" people on the media. Happy to buy a new car, happy to buy new things, happy to drink beer or happy for a happy meal. The idea being that having or doing something will make you happy.

If you believe that you need something to be happy then you are screwed, because you will never be happy. You will never have enough of what it makes you happy because even if you get it, the moment you got it you will need increasingly more.
It is the basic tenant of the Buddhist philosophy "desire is the root of suffering"
So how can we get this happiness thing?
You don't. You will never get the happiness you dream of.

Happiness is not something you get. Happiness is something you manifest. Go outside, look at the sun, let the warm sink in your body realize you are alive and let yourself be happy.
Look at a tree, be happy. Look at your family be happy.
When you allow yourself to be happy with everything and anything in your life your happiness will start to flow.

Happiness is this joy of simply being alive. Happiness is you being unbound, liberated from the idea that you have to be, or have to have, or have to do anything to be happy.
Stop looking outwards for your happiness, look instead inwards. You can feel your happiness bottled inside, trying to get out, and probably you will be afraid to let it go because you were never told that you could be unconditionally happy.

Start practicing expressing your happiness every day.
Allow yourself to be happy, to express joy to smile for any reason or no reason at all. Practice happiness until it becomes a habit. Be happy until you start annoying the people around you until they start asking "what is your secret, what makes you so happy?"
And you can tell them the truth "nothing!"


Monday, January 15, 2018

The Tao of Relationships

Relationships are becoming increasingly more difficult to have and to preserve.
From the dawn of history, we have tales of bad relationships.
The Greek mythology is full of stories of relationships gone bad.
From family feuds to tragic romantic love affairs to wars between clans and nations, people had always had a hard time getting along.

But all those Greek tragedies were special, rare occasions, not the social norm. Most of the time people had good relationships. They knew how to start a conversation, communicate effectively, handle differences and settle disputes.
I know this first hand because I grew up on a farm were the social dynamics were unchanged for hundreds of years.

There was a time when everybody knew their neighbor by name when children play in the streets without fear of being kidnaped and when romance ended up in marriages that lasted a lifetime.
Those days are gone.

We are living in the Internet era where everyone has thousands of friends and followers but if you need a ride to the airport you have to call a taxi because you don't know anybody that will give you a ride. We are living in the era where internet dating offers thousand of matches to choose from but not a single one that you would choose to go out with.
Our marriages are statistically doomed from the start. Our best hopes are to find somebody that will stick around for more than a couple of month.
We live solitary lives in cities crowded with millions of people.

What happened?
We build societies and the human civilization to serve us the humans, to make us safer, prosperous, healthier and happier.
In time the roles have changed we are no longer the masters of the social and economic system. We are the slaves.
We have become part of the machine part of the system.

Our relationships have changed into social contracts. Love has become business. Anything that doesn't serve the system is discarded everything that benefits the system is promoted.
And we buy into it because it gives us the promise of success.
But people are becoming increasingly unhappy and all the material success and convenience of the modern life cannot replace the feeling of love and belonging we have lost.

To love is to give without asking anything in return.
That goes against the social construct which is to take, to accumulate without giving anything in return or at least to give back as little as possible. That is the formula for success.
That is the way we live our lives.

This is the Ego reality. The world of fragmentation and separation, the world of scarcity and fear.
We have promoted the worst in us the Ego to be the one that takes all the decisions and directs our lives.
We have created a soulless society where love and happiness come in a pill bottle.
We all want love, we are starved for love, we all are beginning to receive it but who is the one to give?

Business is good for business but life is not a business transaction.
The business rules do not apply to life and relationships and if they are applied, the results are always a disaster.
The business model is based on competition on having winners and losers. Love is not a business affair
In love, you can't have a winner and a loser.
In a bad relationship, both parties are losers.


Friday, January 12, 2018

The Age of Righteousness

As we were discussing in my last post, in the Western culture we see time in a linear fashion, we see the society evolving on a never-ending ascending path, like climbing an infinite mountain.
That vision, of a linear timeline, is not shared by all cultures.
Some people see time as a circular trajectory, they see the society evolving in cycles of growth and decay and according to that philosophy, we are now experiencing an age of decadence, the Kali Yuga.

One of the symptoms of a decaying society is the polarisation of spiritual beliefs, part of a larger trend of social fragmentation.
The middle way of thinking has been abandoned in favor of the hard-line extremism.

According to Buddhist teachings, things and actions are not "good" or "bad" - for example, guns and killing are neutral.
You can use a gun to rob a bank or you can use a gun to protect the bank from being robbed. Or the second World War, the Germans use guns and killing to subjugate people and destroy democracy and of course we used guns and killing to liberate the subjugated nations and reinforce democracy.

So all things being equal, the middle path is always the wise path to follow.
That could be summarised in a simple statement:
"Everything in excess is bad" or "Everything in moderation is good"
This middle way path is a path of harmony, of balance rather than this, is "good vs this is bad" path of righteousness.

It is very hard to convince anybody that democracy is no better than dictatorship, that actually a political, social system is only as good or bad as the people that are running the system.
A democracy run by corrupt people is not a good thing at all, and we are starting to see that in our own government at this very moment in history,

A dictatorship run by intelligent concerned people will always be superior to a democracy run by corrupted politicians.
I know, that idea is very unpleasant and unacceptable to us Americans born and raised to worship democracy and freedom but the truth is that China, a communist dictatorship, is kicking our democratic asses, at this very moment, on all fields, economic, educational, healthcare, research and development and basically, military power would be the only thing that we could say we are better  at, but even that is a very relative assumption.

That is just one example but the problem has become an epidemic. The "my way is the right and only way" philosophy is embraced by almost everybody.
You cannot have a decent polite argument anymore, therefore all the paths to progress and reconciliations have been shut close. The only solution left is the frontal confrontation. The only outcome acceptable is the total annihilation of the opponent part.

This polarisation of beliefs will continue covering the lad, will continue to grow, especially with the help of mass media that thrives on chaos and negativity.
The only good thing about this darkness is that will allow a lot of people to finally discern the light of spiritual teachings we have lost or forgot.



Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The Fascination of Time

There is a common thread in all ancient cultures, the very unusual fascination of the old civilizations for astronomy and time.

From the primitive paleolithic cultures like Stonehenge to the Greek antiquity, from the Mayan civilization to The Egyptian pharaonic empire, we have found very concrete and powerful evidence of their preoccupation and fascination with astronomy and time.
There is no doubt about it the only question is "Why?"

There are some attempts to explain it like "They need it to keep time because they needed to know when to plant their crops and when the rainy season will come" and stuff like that.
But that is a very weak argument not false but incomplete.

If you are familiar with the Vedic scriptures you have probably heard of the "Yugas" or cycles of time.
Yuga in Hinduism is an epoch or era within a four-age cycle.
A complete Yuga starts with the Satya Yuga, via Treta Yuga and Dvapara Yuga into a Kali Yuga.
Our present time is a Kali Yuga, which started at 3102 BCE with the end of the Kurukshetra War (or Mahabharata war)

Not coincidentally the Greeks divided the time into a similar 4 ages structure: The Golden age, the Silver age, the Bronze age and the Iron age.
According to the ancient wisdom, we are now living in the Kali Yuga or the Iron age which is the last of the periods - the end of time.

Two things.
One: the Yugas are based on the Galactic precession, the Sun circular movement around the galaxy.
How the hell that they know there is a galaxy and the galaxy is rotating. How did they measure it when we, the modern civilization, thought the Earth was the center of the universe till  Giordano Bruno and Galileo? 
What does the galaxy moving have to do with planting the crops or tending the cows, or anything else?
Why did they do it? There has to be an explanation for it.

Second: All ancient civilizations saw time as a cyclical occurrence not a linear one.
It is funny that even now at this moment 2018 AD we believe in a linear time. We believe that progress and growth just keep on happening forever.

That view is obviously false. Nothing keeps on growing forever sooner or later we will run out of natural resources and space to expand and a collapse of the of the human society is inevitable. ( I know; if we learn to live in harmony with mother Gaya we can attain a sustainable symbiotic existence. The humankind will destroy itself in a global war before we learn to live in harmony with anything.)

But the old wisdom tells us that time is cyclical and all are warning us of the inevitable decay of the human civilization.
According to the Sanscrit texts, we are now living in the Kali Yuga the age of the Kali goddess of destruction.

Kali Yuga: The final age. It is the age of darkness and ignorance.
People become sinners and lack virtue. They become slaves to their passions and are barely as powerful as their earliest ancestors in the Satya Yuga.
Society falls into disuse and people become liars and hypocrites.

Knowledge is lost and scriptures are diminished. Humans eat forbidden and dirty food.
The environment is polluted, water and food become scarce.
Wealth is heavily diminished. Families become non-existent. By the end of Kali Yuga, the average lifespan of humans will be as low as 70 years.

I know what you are thinking "this is the same BS as the Mayan end of time calendar" You are right in the sense that time cannot physically end but "the end of time" is a metaphorical expression, it is a warning that time is running out and we have to wake up before our civilisation will colaps due to our ignorance and greed.