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    Funny reflections along with this week's focus... things I've not considered in years, such as in childhood, the end of every week's Sunday sermon in church. After an hour or so of music and a message designed to cause everyone present to be put on the spot, or rather to let themselves be put on the spot... to 'let God shine a light / examine their hearts', there was the call to come forward in full view of everyone, and to 'accept forgiveness' ... Jesus, which/who this other person 'had' to give you. One wasn't to accept the image of Jesus, but this was it, body and blood... that the symbols (man made bread, grape juice) *was* *is* actual. There was this environment created of opening, then the enactment or gesture of planting of a seed, in a sense...

    From that point on, salvation was considered 'done'. At that point, 'geting to heaven' wasn't supposed to be a concern anymore ... that one died to trying to save themselves and now was a conduit for 'others'.

    Except, that by the next week lots had happened and most of us felt we (and all those other people too) should be walking up every week. It could be discouraging and confusing. 

    It was in the environment's interest to sort of let people depend on keeping up the structure or package, and even more unfortunately, to use the opportunity for their own agendas. The one who walked up had just be shown how to live, in a sense, giving up fixations, not holding on. But from there it often became 'about' the church and the friends in the church and the expectations of 'looking like' what a spiritual/good person is supposed to look like... burying the heart back up again, but in a more fancy and acceptable way...

    Not just in Christianity, mind you, but in so many things, until we can't hear the 'still small voice' very well and are asking others continually 'did you hear the voice, what did it say?' :) Our tendency to pile on, and to 'escape' from standing open in the examining light continually perhaps, sells us short. Can't help but think of school 'systems' too.

    So what comes to mind is Trungpa's focus on 'cutting through spiritual materialism' and that all the overlay and trappings are fine and even in many cases *beautiful*, when they are allowed to openly point to what can't be expressed..  

    When they become the point, there can be a feeling like one is not able to receive, not able to ask the right questions, 'far away' from *entering in to rest* which is maybe the only way to convey that to anyone else... to cross over, in a sense, and give up 'leaning on one's own understanding.' "My peace I give you, not as the world gives, give I you."

    Anyway, apologies to anyone bothered by my blending of scriptures and such like. For me it is an astounding thing to come back to some of these things that I felt so angry about for various reasons, for so long, and cherish the heart in spite of the overlay... and then to see the beauty in the intention of the overlay as well.

    Conscience to me is about not hiding the softness of one's heart. When we're open in that way of putting ourselves on the spot continually and allowing our intentions to be seen, it may be really difficult if not impossible to hold grudges for too long, even against our selves.

    "Guard [cultivate] the
    [open/soft] heart
    with all dilligence [devotion]
    For out of it [naturally]
    Spring the Virtues of life."

    From writing this I went to email where I found the 'Ocean of Dharma' newsletter, which sends out Trungpa quotes now and again. Seemed timely to post today's:  

    Cutting through confusion is an easy matter if we know what to cut. In tantric philosophy, it is said that the destruction of ego is the spontaneous action of enlightened energy. Here the Lion’s Roar is not a roar of victory, but a roar that mocks ego’s deception. There is no room for the further confirmation of concealing, for the Lion’s Roar is constant cutting through, constantly exposing of one deception after another.

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    Wow... thank you Eliza!
    Posted 08:28, 10 Mar 2011
    Oh, Thank you Dao! Ihope that you are settling in for a wonderful week. :) I came back from the dentist to edit down just now, and seeing your comment won't do so. I actually thought of erasing the whole thing and writing about how 'on the spot' one feels in a dentist's chair... it is a great equalizer, hah... then they leave you in silence under a light for long periods of time, which has the spontaneous effect similar to the above of 'coming clear' ...
    Posted 10:47, 10 Mar 2011
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