Mental Fixation As Spiritual Impediment - The Importance Of Physical Practice or Tapas In Grounding Kundalini Energy - The Importance Of Self-Discipline and Self-Reliance - An Auspicious Two-Toned Ringing In My Ears - Quitting My Masters Program

On the spiritual path it is essential to retain an equanimity of mind. The stronger and more resilient you are, the more you will be able to tolerate the distractions and mental excesses that are common in the workplace and broader social world. If achieving God consciousness is your life's principle goal then you need to retreat, as much as necessary, from worldly involvement and idle conversation. If you are physically or emotionally weak, or if kundalini's preparation of your bodymind becomes overwhelming, this need for retreat and withdrawal from outward involvement will be even more important for you to honor.

One of the biggest obstacles to spiritual growth and the grounding of heightened presence is mental fixation. Nothing serves to imbalance the holistic flow of consciousness in the body more than conversations and thoughts that are pursued idly and without a connection to the feelings and emotions that arise from the body. Distracting mental activities, such as time wasting conversations, mask the deep awareness that informs our every breath. This deep awareness seeks to make itself known to us; but in order for this to happen we must listen; and in order to listen, we must stop talking.

Spiritual aspirants must pay particular attention to their diet. Listen to your body and how your overall energy state responds to certain foods. There are times when your body needs fresh fruits and vegetables; and there are times when you need cereals, milk products, meats, and fish. Dead, heavy foods like pasta obstruct the gastrointestinal tract. Sometimes this has the effect of dampening energy flow and calming the bodymind. But in high-vibrational states such dead foods may cause a short-circuiting, so to speak, of subtle energy and an associated sense of imbalance, and even chaos, in the mind. Pressure from these dark, difficult-to-digest masses in the descending colon presses upon sexual centers and triggers cravings that are difficult to redirect or sublimate.

It is critical that you make time in your day for inner absorption. You need to lie down and let gravity and your subconscious take over. As the subconscious -- this deeper level of awareness -- rises up, it merges with the conscious. Little by little nothing is left in the mind that is sub- or un-conscious. This takes years, and it takes God's ongoing intervention and grace in your life. Lie down, unclench your hands, raise your feet up against the wall or on a pillow. Let blood and energy flow to your head. Take the burden of gravity off your legs and feet for a while. Listen to your breath. Feel your heartbeat and listen to the pulse of blood in your ears.

Listen to the ringing in your ears. For me, I have two tones going on in my ears at all times: a high pitch and a low pitch, both of which are pleasant. Let your mind wander. If you are living a life with minimal entanglements -- a life that is supportive of your inner needs -- you will enter dream states several times a day. It is in the space between consciousness and dream where energies of growth and discernment intensify and are made more palpable. It is a rich, fertile space where deeper potentials make themselves known to you. It is a place where your intuition and deeper wisdom are most obvious and perceptible. Spiritual aspirants need to enter such innocent, deepening, connecting reveries multiple times a day. Over time, and with God's grace, such states will be increasingly characterized by spiritual ecstasy and union. Confidence comes from trust and regular verification that your life and bodymind are appropriate vehicles for Spirit's realization. Peace and certainty must be your foundation. Then, with greater yearning and with Spirit's intervention, more profound and transcendental states will be accessible and, eventually, routine.

For every hour of mental work -- especially mental work that is compelled rather than chosen -- I need four hours of contemplation and exercise to balance. Too much energy in my head causes me to feel hot and irritable. For some, laying quietly in bed or sitting restfully in meditation are sufficient to ground and balance the bodymind. But it is my experience that as more energy flows through you, more overtly physical practices are needed for this grounding and balancing. As I write this in 2017, it has been my experience for twenty-three years that three to four hours of hiking or other forms of aerobic activity are required each day to keep my bodymind balanced and productive. Presently, it is common for me to hike just two times per week, for a total of 12 miles. This is woefully inadequate, compared to the 10 miles or more per day that used to be my norm, but it is the best I can manage, due to a variety of factors. I am able to muster long durations of mental exercise, but I am not as productive or insightful as I used to be, and the amount of energy flowing through me -- and my overall degree of sensitivity and aliveness -- is much less than it once was.

I continue to track my weight. I always want to be leaner and more light on my feet. On a physical level, this means simply that I have less weight, but there is a spiritual dimension of this material lightness: It means that more of my energy can be focused on the spiritual level -- and not be so consumed by the gross maintenance of my physical form.

I'd like to weigh less, but spiritual realization has to be my focus. You don't lose weight simply to weigh less. Weight loss is not an ends in itself. It must be informed, as much as possible, by your spiritual focus. Presently I use food to combat the stress of my university studies. It is difficult for me to lose weight when I am suffering such destabilizing, intellectual stress. When I think of finishing my academic program, with this intellectual cloud over my head gone, the sense of exhilaration and release is almost too much to bear.

There is a spontaneous, open center in human relationships that needs to predominate if spirit is to fill the vacuum that is human ignorance. This can occur in a classroom environment where spontaneity is allowed -- where pauses and unpredictable silence arises -- and where students are given some authority in determining the direction of instruction. If all activity in the classroom is directed by schedules, checklists, behavioral expectations, and scripted materials that must be strictly adhered to, then the emergence of spiritual understanding in the classroom will be thwarted.

Passion must not be limited to the bedroom. It must permeate your entire life. Sexual energy must be sublimated and animate your every activity. People who have sexual cravings but are disinterested in their other involvements are a bore to me.

It is of the utmost importance to have a physical practice that allows you to ground the intense energies at play in your head and heart. On difficult days, with much stress in your external preoccupations, it might take two hours or more of sustained physical practice to find even a modicum of balance. A life without regular, sustained tapas is a life without momentum and without a future.

When you are looking at breaking ties with something that has to do with your livelihood, with your economic wellbeing, you have to be careful. I took 14 months of near constant consideration of my involvement in a special education masters program before I quit. In the state of Hawaii a masters degree would not have added to my income, as I already had what was then called a "professional diploma" in the field. But going outside Hawaii, which of course I never planned to do, I would be limited. In September 1994 it was very important for me to break with the intellectual demands of the university. But had I finished my thesis (which was on toilet training), fifteen years later in California I would not have had to spend considerable time and money to earn the masters that is necessary for advancement in most school districts' salary schedules. Still, the $12,000 and hundreds of hours of time I spent from 2009-2011 were a smaller price (all things considered) than I would have paid in 1994 to complete a 50-page thesis based on original research. In retrospect, it was an expensive decision, but one I was willing to pay for. Even had I known then what I know now, I'd probably make the same decision. Such is the rash logic of following one's spiritual intuition.

It is essential that spiritual aspirants do everything that they reasonably can to jettison unnecessary intellectual involvements in order to attend more deeply to their spiritual path. The purpose of the mind is not to parse disconnected intellectual minutia at the university, but rather to discover the hidden and the spiritual in the everyday: to see everything around us as a function of spirit, and to raise that spiritual base to the level of conscious awareness at every opportunity.

Being disciplined and responsible for yourself are important elements of the spiritual path. Taking government assistance is not being responsible, especially when combined with laziness, drug use, and a lack of being of service to others. Living on handouts, enabled by government force, when you are clearly of able body and mind gives you a false sense of accomplishment and reduces your spiritual potential.

Sometimes masturbation allows you to "clear the slate," energetically. You erase negative stress and dampen a hyper-excited condition that interferes with important life activities. But masturbation should be done sparingly, as it accelerates the aging process.

It is nearly impossible to live with integrity in a group environment. It's a lifelong process learning how best to be authentic and honor one's spiritual calling, while also allowing others to develop in ways that honor their own unique paths. This holds for both the workplace and one's home. Uncouth people who use foul language, don't take care of their bodies, take Welfare, and express cynicism that their personal agency is important to their own success, disgust me. They are a cancer on society.

Tape Transcriptions - Tape #17


1994.9.11. (Sunday) (Tape #17, continued.)

(wind distortion in audio) It's Sunday, September 11, 1994. My brain is pretty fried. I really have to be careful. At work, exposed to L's (my aide's) incessant dialogue, having very little space for myself, the long hours, the responsibilities of my being grade level chair -- I have to talk to so many people about so many things -- (sigh) and my Wednesday nights P.E. course. Brutal. And then my ongoing work on my masters thesis. These are all major mechanisms of assault on my inner absorption. I have to be careful that my brain doesn't get too hot...that I avoid that red fire feeling. Because it's getting a little bit that way. I also have to eat just right. Too much yogurt acidifies me. I need to avoid pasta or anything else that clogs my GI tract. Anything that's slow to move through my system causes my energy to become fiery and painful in my head. Right now I have a lot of pressure in my head. I battled masturbating for about two hours this morning. I didn't do it. I came very close, because I had some pretty wonderful, erotic dreams, full of good looking women, making themselves very available to me. (birds chirping) There was some interesting stuff going on there. It was good. But not cause to masturbate, if I can help it. Because today I felt pretty wired and out-of-control. I didn't even want to go shopping, grocery shopping, and I ended up talking my head off to the people down there. I came out of there exhausted. These three girls at the cashier section were all very much interested in talking to me. We had a good time talking. But really all I want to do is lie down and contemplate and meditate. I don't want to be so externally oriented right now.

This upcoming week is going to be particularly grueling. Not only is it my first five-day week back to school, but I have a meeting on Tuesday with my advisor. I haven't done half the work for it. What I really want to do is just show her what I've done, and be clear that that's the pace I'm going to be on. I'm going to try to be resilient inside regarding any kinds of doubts or aspersions she may cast upon me. You know, I'm not going to go insane over this thesis. I need to do it at my pace. I cannot produce this kind of information -- this kind of knowledge -- very quickly. One hour of that takes at least four hours of contemplation, and contemplation is very hard to come by these days. I guess, if I could be thankful of anything, it's that I think my job is easier than many. I'm able to take breaks. I'm able to stretch out. I'm able to have time for a lunch. (laughing) I'm able to go to the bathroom when I want to go to the bathroom. And I'm able to get a good amount of my paperwork done during the school day. Those are all very critical. I don't have very much to do outside of it. All I do outside of it is writing my IEPs, which I do at home. But everything else aside from that is done within the school day, and that's very good.

(still hiking) My weight has remained steady. Last week I'd usually be around 180 when I came back from my hike and then in the morning upon waking I'd be around 183 or so, 184. So I'd say my basic weight is 184. I look forward to it coming down more -- another 20 pounds. But again, spirit has to be the focus. Food, in my case, is still being used a lot for purposes other than sustenance, especially with this university program. There's a lot more stress in my life right now than I'd like to have. For a couple of seconds at a time I've allowed myself to think about what it would be like to not have to be writing this thesis. That is, to be doing my job without any kind of other academic work on top of it, and having summers just for nothing but me. It was extremely exhilarating -- almost too much so. But I don't want to think about that right now. Anyway, when I think about that kind of freedom it triggers deep drives for spiritual freedom that give me a headache.

Basically, with the kind of tapas I've been doing -- how focused I've had to be -- not masturbating this morning -- I feel this tremendous amount of energy inside of me -- like a volcano.  I'm just trying to ride it. (sound of feet plodding along the trail, flashlights and microcassettes jiggling in fanny pack) I don't want to deny it. Just let it be. I hope I can sleep okay tonight.

1994.9.13. (Tuesday) (Tape #17, continued.)

(sound of car) Well, it's September 13, Tuesday, and I'm off to work. I woke up this morning feeling very stressed. I'm beyond hating M (my advisor), or even the requirements of the program. It's so far beyond that now that it's just fear. There's this abysmal fear of it. It really wrecks me inside. I have a meeting with them today. What I'm going to try to convey to her is that I don't like her expectations. I'd rather she just said, "Here's the information. Read it and do the best you can with it." But instead, she always has her external -- specific -- expectations, which is really bothering me. These people are really bad for my system. It's hard enough that I have to deal with school right now, which is already quite hard. I just don't like external expectations. I'm much more of a -- you know -- "You give me the ball and I'll play with it" kind of guy. There was a lot of stuff she wanted me to do in a very specific manner, and I haven't done any of it. I have to face the music today. I woke up a couple of times in the night and that was the only thing on my mind, this meeting with M today, and C (practicum supervisor). I don't know if I can handle it. I don't know if I can stop obsessing about it. Very afraid. My emotional disposition is very fragile right now. I'm so vulnerable to everything. At work when things come up I take them very seriously. I'm very thin skinned. We'll see. I just hope that it goes okay.

(pause; still in car) The other thing I was thinking about was how my partner teacher, I (edit), is flirting with me, but in a way that really disturbs me. I'll tell you about it. She's very dispassionate or uninspired in most all aspects of her life. I find her to be a very muted person; and then when she flirts, all of a sudden she gets a little more animated or lustful. Here's what I find disturbing about it. Sexuality is not merely an expression of male-female genital desire. Your sexuality is an expression of your entire approach to life. Your sexuality is your love and passion for everything. And so, when I picture it with her, she might enjoy being in bed with me, but then that attitude -- that desire -- does not transfer to other parts of her life. It's not generalized. So I find it a very faulty foundation for a passionate life. I mean, I want to approach eating a pretzel the same way I approach eating a vagina -- you know, cunnilingus. It's the same thing. It's absorption in God. So I just found it very disturbing and very marked in her. It's something I'm not used to -- this discrepancy between passion sexually, but having sexual passion be extremely narrowly defined. I just can't see sharing that, because there is nowhere to go with it. Basically, it ends in exhaustion. The idea is to just drain yourself of your sexual vitality in the bed and have none of it be applied or generalized or sublimated to other aspects of your life.

Yesterday, beginning my hike I was extremely tired and heavy feeling. Each limb of mine was like a thousand pounds. It took me a couple of hours to shake it off even minimally; and by the time I was coming home I truly felt like a zombie. I felt very light-headed. I felt really -- I don't know -- detached from the world. Very strange. I was leaning over. I was bending over a lot, to have my head hanging lower than my heart, and I was just sitting there for a minute or two at a time; and I felt energies swirling in my heart and my brain; and then I trudged onward again. This hike of mine is amazing and I am so happy I have it available. It's really the only thing that makes the rest of my life possible -- that makes the self-annihilation I go through at work endurable. This is the only thing that resuscitates it and revives it and makes it possible to come and do it again.

1994.9.13. Tuesday. (Tape #17, continued.)

(hiking) I'm totally sick with food. It's September 13, Tuesday. Just a horrible meeting with M (edit). It's so unrelenting. She's so unforgiving. She expects so much for these manini little three units. She can see that I'm committed to the process. I'm scared of her. When I had that flash of insight -- a year ago in a couple months -- I knew I was right to drop the program. It was only really out of consideration for S [??; edit] and his world view -- a world view that centers around (sigh) degree completion and special education prestige. It was that to which I deferred my own needs. My putting in for a year -- a year of leave of absence -- to do that work and then come back is really a waste of my time [the State of Hawaii allows paid sabbaticals]. I get so stressed by this. It takes literally 5% of my intelligence; and while I'm doing it 95% of the rest of me squirms. Squirms horribly, because it's not being accessed. It's like trying to play the Moonlight Sonata with one key on the piano. You can't get any harmony using so little of me. (loud sigh) Oh God, the metaphors are endless. I think I'm finally going to call it quits. The way I felt today; and also my knowledge that the farce is only going to get worse, as I become more invested and more steeped in the reading material. And then the ultimate tragedy will be implementing it and having them come into my classroom to observe. That will be the ultimate horror. And they cannot have that. Life is an emotional, love-centered, self-centered thing; (sigh) and these people make it an intellectual, other-centered thing. (heavy breathing) So it's a horror on two accounts: one is that it does not deal at all with the individual or the self and its needs; nor -- because the self is totally absent in the analysis -- nor does it deal with love or emotion. It creates a totally intellectual, dead thing. It is a horror beyond comparison. And what I'm finding is that by submitting myself to the rigors of being grade level chair -- and really, just another year in that classroom -- is blowing my mind. It is almost in itself more than I can bear. But I believe I can do it. But I'm becoming so finely sensitive. Everything registers in me. I cannot hide anything. This graduate program is that much more traumatic now than it ever was. My defenses are low. I don't have the space to deny myself and beat myself into a pulp of submission and unconsciousness to deal with it.

(pause, continued hiking) I have to look again at that development that I witnessed in myself over the past few years of anger and resentment toward this program. To sort of a death of that. And again, the other side of that is just fear. This morning all I felt was fear in my very bones regarding the meeting. I was totally fearful, because I was totally vulnerable to what she is -- and what she is is horrible. It's too negative for me right now; too powerful for me right now.

(still hiking, sound of cars passing) I'm in the dark, toward the end of my hike here. It's still Tuesday, September 13, 1994. I just wanted to say that I've finally decided once and for all to end my UH program. I just can't endure it any longer. I wish I had... I regret not going with my instincts a year and a few months ago -- in July of the summer of '93 -- when I [first] decided to leave. I should have quit then. I already have certification. I don't need this masters degree. Anyway, I'm outta there. All I've got to do now is write a letter to her. What I hope I can do is little by little get back into the swing of my very deep, very broad spiritually-oriented thinking. I want to be in a place where my intelligence and creativity will not be so restricted; where I can use my mind to discover the hidden and the spiritual in the every day -- because that is what my brain is for. It's to see everything around me as a function of spirit in various sheaths around it. Economic sheaths, various cultural ones -- things that are making it less apparent. And to help them break through those and open up.

All I can do right now is communicate frustration (heavy breathing) without any real clear intellectual perspective. Everything was aggravating to me today. It culminated in a very horrible masturbation. No. I was just very sad. There's a full moon coming up in the next couple of days. It would have been nice to just get into that high-energy mode and feel wild. But instead I deadened myself today. I had a substitute educational assistant for L (edit). This lady's mannerisms were annoying. She was a very local style girl. I hate her stupid language, her unsophisticated stupid ways, plus the fact that she was a heavy smoker and would go smoke on her breaks. Just a coarse person. And then being behind my next-door neighbor's truck on the way home -- hearing those guys' boisterous laughing coming back from a day of surfing, when two out of the four of them are on unemployment and getting stoned at every opportunity. Their lives seem so wasteful to me -- getting drunk and stoned, taking social handouts. (continued heavy breathing as I climb up the mountain; birds singing) Very little discipline. Very irresponsible. It bothered me. And they get home and they play U2's album. They were playing "One." Some very passionate music of which they haven't a fucking clue how to harness in a constructive fashion that kind of despair. The kind of pain U2 talks about. These people are much more likely to get high and drunk before they would grapple with it in a deep way.

(sigh; hiking) I wouldn't have masturbated except that I just... I don't know... I just didn't feel that where I was was right. I just needed to somehow clear the slate somewhat and build again. But even that is an optical illusion (birds chirping) -- a perceptual illusion. Especially now that it's been a couple of days since I've decided to quit the program, I was hoping for a little more of a feeling of liberation. But I guess I've been oriented towards a negative output from my brain for so long that probably it will take me some time to be oriented towards a positive flow of energy and creative output from my brain. Because at work I just felt my energy dragging incredibly slowly today. It was a palpable death. I mean the kids were crying, and the number of people is so intensely high in that room. It was just a pure burnout situation. And I refuse to become codependent. To be an individual with integrity in that situation is very very difficult. So it saddens me. I resorted to masturbating, and now I'm feeling it. It kicks me in the ass. I'm enervated now. I felt my gums recede a little bit. I felt my teeth become more sensitive and detached from my skull.

1994.9.15. Thursday. (Tape #17, continued.)

(hiking) September 15, 1994, continued. It's interesting how much I'm dwelling on this woman I worked with today. She's so uncouth. She takes welfare. She smokes. Her language skills were abominable. All full of pidgin. She said "yeah" all the time. Just horrible language. She has some children, but she's giving them a lousy upbringing. Unsophisticated. Didn't appreciate silence or vocabulary or articulateness or fine food. None of that. She was just a real pig. Definitely not contributing to a movement toward higher consciousness in our species. She was very much part of the dead weight of teevee-watching, cynical, not-do-anything, get-fat, don't-take-care-of-the-body, don't-promote-any-social-causes, et cetera person. The average person. The consumer. The person who just gets cancer and doesn't understand that that cancer is a reflection of the very life they have led, the foods they have eaten, the thoughts they have thought. She really disgusted me.




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