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life...not interrupted

Discussion in 'Freedom from Hell ~ Staying Clean~' started by Sluggo, Oct 15, 2008.

  1. guinevere64

    guinevere64 Well-Known Member

    Hey Janice... Happy Thanksgiving.

    missing our old heart icon... :) G
     
  2. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member

    Calm in quietude is not real calm; when you can be calm in the midst of activity, this is the true state of nature. Happiness in comfort is not real happiness; when you can be happy in the midst of hardship, then you see the true potential of the mind.

    - Huanchu Daoren
     
  3. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member

    Let Go of the Story Line
    Renunciation is realizing that our nostalgia for wanting to stay in a protected, limited, petty world is insane. Once you begin to get the feeling of how big the world is and how vast our potential for experiencing life is, then you really begin to understand renunciation. When we sit in meditation, we feel our breath as it goes out, and we have some sense of willingness just to be open to the present moment. Then our minds wander off into all kinds of stories and fabrications and manufactured realities, and we say to ourselves, "It's thinking." We say that with a lot of gentleness and a lot of precision. Every time we are willing to let the story line go, and every time we are willing to let go at the end of the out breath, that's fundamental renunciation: learning how to let go of holding on and holding back.

    -Pema Chodron
     
  4. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member


    Zen Master Dogen said that “not knowing is the most intimate thing.” Not knowing means to be open to all eventualities, to not prejudge a person or situation. If your mind is full of preconceived notions, there is no room for an unbiased view. It is like when your hands are full of objects, you cannot pick up anything new. A closed mind causes separation and suspicion. Like an umbrella, a mind is only useful when it is open. The first step toward maintaining an open mind is to understand the nature of mind or self.

    -Gerry Shishin Wick
     
  5. Living Free

    Living Free Well-Known Member

    How are you Janice? Praying for you and your family.
     
  6. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member

    liny -
    thanks for thinking of me. I've been away...on vacation with my husband and son. We went to Costa Rica for two weeks. quite wonderful.

    gratefully, my parents are pretty stable these days. Dad is cancer-free, just suffering some residual effects from massive radiation treatments which should resolve itself. Mom is about halfway through intense chemo...and intermittently in alot of pain. to her, taking a percocet is absolutely the last resort....but she is taking them reluctantly at the moment. Dad was on morphine for months...unlike the addict in me, he just stopped taking it when he didn't need it anymore. imagine that.

    My efforts these days are with my son...trying to navigate the best path for him and get the help he needs. it is a painful process, but I do trust that it will work out. i'm putting in the footwork as much as possible, without trying to 'manage' or manipulate outcomes, praying for God's will, and for the courage, strength and direction to see it, and to accept it. its such a fine line....when to let go, how much to push, what to fight....what's God's plan in all this? acceptance, courage....and wisdom to know the difference. my daily prayer is for the 'wisdom' to know the difference, which i often do not possess.

    happy new year to all my friends here.

    janice
     
  7. Living Free

    Living Free Well-Known Member

    Good to see you Janice. Great news about your parents. Wow...grateful to hear the best possible outcome thus far.

    I dont know the particulars with your son Janice, just generalities, however we parents are their best advocates for these little ones. I dont know if we differ on the belief of God's plan or how it transpires, but I believe that God gives us the ability to do what is right, and we can only do that when we strive to be right with our HP/Universe. Do right- get right yes? So, with regard to your son, if there is a goal and he will benefit from the goal that youve identified and believe is attainable, then my feeling is that as long as we do the right thing to get to those means, then that is what God's plan is. Just the opposite of the ends justify the means. You are a very bright and capable woman, with a loving heart Janice. Trust yourself and have faith that you do actually posess more wisdom than you give yourself credit for....follow that inner voice. I know it speaks to you. Much love and respect.

    Happy New Year to you and everyone as well.
     
  8. guinevere64

    guinevere64 Well-Known Member

    Hey Janice. Happy new year. Been thinking of you down there, Sneetches on the beaches.

    I appreciate hearing others' experiences with discernment in parenting. I've had to work to understand: while I'm not my son's HP, and he has his own HP, I need to do my best to guide him, and to work with my partner in parenting and those we've identified as people who can help us. In my experience sometimes those people turn out not to be the right people, but that's all part of the learning process too. ... I've fretted a great deal and in retrospect I can see that my son's HP has had his back since forever--since he was 1 and started day care, since he was 3 and we needed a pre-school in New York. I've fretted especially with regard to education. It hasn't been perfect (what is?) but it has served him. This year the goal is to identify a high school (for godsake... he's that old) that will serve him and that we can afford. So, another discernment process, and another letting-go, guiding him, and allowing myself to be guided.

    Very glad to hear about your folks, Janice. xx

    Love all you guys so much. Wishing you a happy and healthy new year. --G
     
  9. Living Free

    Living Free Well-Known Member

    Janice, sometimes I read something in a Spirituality thread, or in the Daily emails that you set up for me to receive, or on a enlightenment email that comes via Facebook that resonates loud for either myself or some one in particular around me. Today I happened upon this old post and thought about you and your recent post about decision making and choices. Hope youre doing well today....thinking about you:

    No trumpets sound when the important decisions of our life are made. Destiny is made known silently___________Agnes DeMille

    The day ahead offers us choices of many kinds-some big ones, many that will affect other persons close to us, a few that will
    have profound effects on our destiny. But no choice, no decision we make, will be wrong. A particular decision may lead us slightly astray. Down a dead-end path, perhaps - but we can always turn back and choose again.

    We are seldom aware of gravity of a particular choice at the time of making it. Only hindsight reveals the wisdom of an important choice. Nevertheless, no choice is without importance in the overall picture of our lives. And at the same time, no
    choice is all-powerful regarding our destiny. We are offered chances again and again for making the right choices, the ones
    that will most contribute to the bigger plan for our lives.

    I need not worry about today's opportunities for decision-making. I will listen to those around me. I will seek guidance in the
    messages coming to me. I will make the choices I need to, today.
     
  10. Robyn

    Robyn Well-Known Member

    That reminds me of how much I miss coming here and reading your quotes. So inspiring.
    Happy New Year, Janice
    Robyn
     
  11. teach07

    teach07 Well-Known Member

    Ditto to the above......Thinking of you Janice and wishing you a happy New Year .... Carol
     
  12. Trigger

    Trigger Well-Known Member

    this is precisely where i'm at with everything, especially in regards to the program and my "failed" experience last year. to go into something new imagining how it's going to be... even though i had the best intentions, it's obvious now that i set myself up to be disappointed.

    recently, someone has been very patient in pointing these things out to me. he was like-- "you went to your first women's stag meeting expecting it to be some imagined feminist protest rally, and you were surprised when it didn't live up to what was essentially a fantasy in the first place?" it's so easy to fall into this sort of behavior, and now that i've learned better, i see rookies at every meeting beginning to make the same mistake.

    because one of the related signs is over excitement and traits related to earnest happiness, which seems great at first. but with addicts.. i just think we generally start to get weird and attach to things that bring us happiness (or even unhappiness! with me, it's anything that brings intensity and emotion). well.. very quickly an obsession forms, and after that, a "burnt out" stage is inevitable and it can be very destructive. obsessive behavior is common amongst addicts, and i'm currently trying to find a different way.

    because the great thing about living without preconceptions, is the ability the world has to completely surprise me. even when things do work out exactly like my expectations, i end up being depressed on some cosmic level. as if i'm just asleep somewhere, dreaming up everyone and everything in this world. "loneliness" and isolation are definitely the right words.

    yes, it's good to see you Janice. i've missed the balance you bring here. it's interesting that when certain members "go missing" you realize that it's not just their absence that is noticed, it's the absence of their influence among other members as well. i'm beginning to see how we all effect each other in this internet game.

    EDIT-- i feel dumb for not reading your update, or any of the recent responses before posting. bad habit, and though i have nothing new to add, i just wanted to say that i enjoyed (and appreciate) it all.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011
  13. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member

    (just sharing my recent spiritual practice)

    (Please notice how this works & be sure not to start praying this in earnest until tomorrow.)
    "God, let me be treated today the way I treated others yesterday".

    was invited by a remarkable group of recovered women to participate in a spiritual bible study on Wednesday nights...following a book by Max Lucado (A Thirst for God). So, instantly my mind snaps shut at such a thought...bible study? me? don't think so. I really have no connection to the bible, or Christian tenets at this point in my spiritual journey.

    But then, I remember what gave me freedom in the first place...being willing and open to experience God in any venue that presents itself. So...off I go.

    also need to remember the Herman Spencer quote warning about 'contempt prior to investigation'. So...off I go.

    much love
    j
     
  14. guinevere64

    guinevere64 Well-Known Member

    j... this made me think of your thread. and of many things you've said to me...

    "Rational analysis is indispensable for mathematics, medicine, or science, but useless for God."--Karen Armstrong, The Spiral Staircase

    hope your bible study is illuminating. most excellent.--G
     
  15. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member

    It has become very clear to me that each individual's life has a directionality. Each life is moving in a particular direction, with a particular intention behind that direction. What that direction and intention are, we are often not aware of. But that doesn't mean there is no direction or that the direction we assume our life to have is the true one. Even though we may not be aware of what life's direction and intentions are for us, we nevertheless often still do flow with it. We are carried by this river of life, sometimes unwillingly. But whether we go kicking and screaming or quietly and in gratitude, life will have its way with us.

    The ego doesn't experience life's directionality, its intentionality. The ego isn't tuned in to the river of life, the flow. The ego is what rails against life, thinks life must be managed, and goes kicking and screaming down the river. The ego feels it has to make life happen. But life is already happening, and happiness lies in tuning in to what is already happening and co-creating with that, paddling with the river, not against it, catching the current and letting the river take us where it wants to go. This is only difficult when the ego wants life to go in some other direction than life is going or when the ego thinks life should be going in some other direction than life is going.

    To find out where life is going, all we have to do is notice what is happening: What are you inspired to do now? What opportunities are coming to you now? What is being asked of you now? What is life allowing or making room for you to do or create now? What directions is it blocking and what directions is it supporting now? Where is the ease in your life — what's working now? Usually going with the flow means going toward what's working and what's being supported and away from what isn't, although there can be challenges even when we are in the flow—eddies, rapids, and snags in the river. The ego makes life harder than it needs to be by bucking the flow. It's easy to go down the river, even when the river is producing rapids. What's hard is not going down the river or trying to go up the river.

    There is a greater Intelligence behind all life and behind each individual life. We are, in fact, that same Intelligence. That Intelligence knows what it's doing and has our best interests in mind. These may not be the same as the ego's interests. This Intelligence is interested in growth, love, learning, and developing our talents, resources, compassion, and wisdom. The river of life is sure to accomplish these things, whether we go down it kicking or screaming or with grace and gratitude. We don't get to choose what this ride down the river brings, but we do get to choose how we will go down the river. Our experience of life is in our hands, even if the events of our life are not.

    Life happens. Much of it just happens to us, and some of it is shaped by us. But no matter what happens, we always have the power to determine our response to it and therefore our experience of it. This is really what life is teaching us as it brings us Home. It teaches us that how we respond to life is what matters — not what life brings us. Certain responses (e.g., kindness, acceptance, love, forgiveness, gratitude) let us relax and go with the flow of life, while other responses cause us and others suffering. In the end, our response to each moment is what matters, not what happens. When we say yes to how life is happening, miracles happen — love, peace, contentment, and happiness happen. Each of us can make this a better world by welcoming, accepting, and being grateful for however life is showing up because when we do, we drop into Essence and become an expression of peace and love on earth, and that is what this ride down the river of life is all about. Such responses to life take us speedily and gracefully Home.

    Gina Lake
     
  16. Allgood

    Allgood Well-Known Member

  17. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member

    Good and bad aren't absolutes. They are beliefs, judgments, ideas based on limited knowledge as well as on the inclinations of our minds.
    The situation we always live in is like the following story:
    There was a spiritual teacher who lived on a mountain. Just below him was a farmer who didn't like the spiritual man because he felt that what "Mr. Spirituality" did was insignificant compared to growing crops and raising cattle. One day, one of the farmer's cows broke the fence and all the cows escaped. The farmer decided to go see the spiritual man to share his tale of woe.
    "Something terrible has happened," said the farmer, "all my cows have run away. They were the biggest part of my income. I can't believe that God would allow such a bad thing to happen to me."
    All the spiritual guy said was, "Good or bad, who knows."
    The farmer returned to his farm, disliking the teacher more.
    A few days later, since there was now a gap in the farmer's fence, a large number of wild horses wandered onto the farm. The farmer quickly repaired the fence to assure that the horses could not escape and went up to share the story with his neighbor.
    "I have great news to share," said the farmer. "A herd of wild horses have wandered through the opening left by the cows. Having horses is so much better than having cows so I am very happy. Surely, you must agree that this is my good fortune."
    All the spiritual guy could say was, "Good or bad, who knows."
    The farmer again returned to his farm, mumbling and complaining to himself.
    A few days later, the farmer's son broke his leg while trying to ride one of the new horses, so the farmer returned to the teacher and said, "My son has broken his leg in an attempt to ride one of the horses. I hope you can agree that the experience and the pain he is suffering is a bad thing."
    Again the reply was, "Good or bad, who knows."
    Soon after, war broke out in their country. When the army passed through to recruit all the young men for battle, they passed over the farmer's son because of his broken leg.
    The farmer skipped with happiness up the mountain to share the good news.
    Again, all the spiritual teacher would say was, "Good or bad, who knows."
    When do we expect the story to end?
    Socrates pointed out that we carry on as though death were the greatest of all calamities - yet, for all we know, it might be the greatest of all blessings. What are we going to call good? What are we going to call bad? Good or bad is never our choice, or even the issue.
    We'll only make ourselves ever more deluded the longer we play this game. Good versus bad is clearly not the issue. There's something more fundamental at stake.
    But what do we look for?
    If your idea of good opposes something else, you can be sure that what you call "good" is not absolute or certain. It's only in SEEING that we can hope to find what lies beyond our shaky, relative ideas of good and bad. If we would live in a way that is somehow beyond the uncertain dualities of the relative world, we must learn to observe our inclination of mind - our intention, our will, our thirsting desire.
    Don't squelch your desire, or try to stop it. You'll only feed and intensify it. The point is not to kill desire. The point is to SEE. The point is that we become aware of when and how we act out of our intent.
    Most of us, most of the time, tend to act with intent, trying to bring about some desired end. But nature doesn't act with intent. Acting without intent means acting out of Wholeness - out of SEEING the Whole.

    Steve Hagen
     
  18. Sluggo

    Sluggo Well-Known Member

    The spiritual path is about what we give up, not what we get. We seem to always want to get something—spiritual insights or experiences—as a kind of commodity. We sign up for a retreat and expect that we’ll have this or that wonderful experience or this or that special teaching. But don’t these wisdom traditions teach us that, in essence, there’s nothing to get? We need to give up what obscures the abiding wisdom and the abiding reality—the wisdom and reality that is already here. That’s the gospel of the Buddha, but I wonder if we’re listening to it.

    -Tim Olmsted
     
  19. Trigger

    Trigger Well-Known Member

  20. spring

    spring Administrator

    Anybody heard from Janice/Sluggo? She sorta up and disappeared after being with ODR for such a long time. I'm hoping it's just everyday life stuff and something isnt wrong.
     

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