Enlightenment is Open to Anyone Who is Open to It

There is so much crap out there about how difficult enlightenment is to experience.  Some will say that you have to go many, many lifetimes of suffering before you will reach it.  Those who use the language of Heaven or Oneness with God pretty much say the same thing that you have to suffer for many years throughout your life in order to go to heaven. 

Open Minds Open Doors

            The truth is too simple for these complex minds to accept, so they ASSUME that it must be difficult for anyone to experience. 

            Jesus pointed this out many times, such as when he said, “Great is the God that reveals the truth to babes but hides it from the wise and learned ones.” (Mat 11:25)

            All one has to do is to practice loving whatever thought that comes through their mind, no matter what it is, easy enough to say but in practice hard to do for so many reason. 

            Society and life teaches us to be afraid of things in the world so our habit is to think of those things and react with fear (contraction).  Honesty tells us that our thoughts of things in the world are not the same thing as the thing itself.  If we are honest with ourselves then we will admit that the thoughts cannot hurt us, it is only our reactions to the thoughts that cause of harm or negativity. 

            There are lots of reasons why the world does not want you to find the Kingdom of Heaven or Nirvana or Enlightenment or Perfection or whatever you want to call it. It is to the ruling class’s advantage to keep you suffering so it is easier to control and manipulate you.  But for the person who is awake enough to see that it is not to their advantage to continue suffering then ignoring the words of those who have not found enlightenment or heaven is the best strategy. 

Video Heaven, Nirvana & Enlightenment

Ancient words that point at an experience that anyone can have who is open to it. Modern understanding has given us new insights into ancient methods that help a person open up to these experiences or states of consciousness. It is also important to recognize that a large segment of society does not want anyone to experience Heaven, Nirvana or Enlightenment, which is why they condition people to reject the very idea that anyone can experience this.

Outline of conversation:

  • • Most people have heard these words but don’t know what they really mean.
  • • Words that point at something very good
  • • Ancient people have talked about them
  • • Religious and spiritual people talk about them
  • • Often talked about or imagined as impossible to experience
  • • The everyday experience that we don’t realize is amazing
  • • Enlightened people just realize its value
  • • Practice makes perfect
  • • How to practice
  • • A community can help to remember
  • • Mind programmed by society to forget;  Others benefit by our forgetting
  • • NOW is all that is real; thoughts of past or future are distractions from the reality of NOW; ego/survival mechanism over activity motivates us to look at past and future and ignore NOW
  • • Heaven is healthy; relaxes the body and removes dis-ease, tension, and stress
  • • How Neurotransmitters work
  • • How the practice serves humanity, radiating outward that others can feel.
  • • Often to simple for complex minds to accept o Jesus pointed this out when he talked about being like a child to enter heaven
  • • Thoughts as toys to play with and enjoy.

Audio Ben Vizy’s Podcast ‘Free Association’ with me

I met this guy, Ben Vizy, at a Community Cycles gathering and after talking with me for a few minutes he asked me to come to do a podcast with him.  Since I thoroughly enough talking to people about deep topics I accepted and here is the podcast that resulted.

Ben Vizy’s Podcast with Jim Freedom

Video An Enlightened Asshole Starts Speaking Again

I did my first YouTube video in 11 years and I hope to start producing more videos soon.  You can watch it here and follow my channel: An Enlightened Asshole Starts Speaking Again

I love feedback, particularly constructive criticism, but any judgments and criticism are useful.

Getting on the right track to long-term recovery

by Adam Cook (www.addicationhub.org)

Rebuilding a life after addiction isn’t easy. Addressing the physical and psychological issues that caused your substance abuse in the first place is an around-the-clock battle in many cases. Combined with the pressure of providing for your needs and those of your family, it can feel like too much to bear. To minimize stress and frustration that could threaten your sobriety, you must be patient, both with the process and with yourself.

One day at a time

Getting On The Right Track
Getting On The Right Track

Whether you are in a 12-step program or another type of recovery process, the “one day at a time” adage is true for everyone.  Getting your life back on track takes time. Focus only on handling the matters of the day to avoid overwhelming yourself.  Some days it will be all you can do to stay sober, but doing so will give you a win even if you do nothing else.  Other days you may have the constitution to tackle additional matters or self or everyday life.  Either way, all consideration of the future should be in relation to what you can do here and now to make it positive.

Employment matters

Finding employment helps those in recovery maintain a purpose for continuing that journey and builds a positive routine.  It’s important to be patient, network continuously and utilize all resources that are available to you.  Leverage people within your recovery network to help you find your next opportunity. Be sure to express your gratitude to those who offer assistance, even if the opportunity doesn’t work out.

Changes with dual purpose

Part of the recovery process includes making changes to yourself and your routine to help avoid relapse.  While it is incredibly important, those changes don’t have to be simply for the sake of changing.  Instead, focus the changes on other goals to help you get double the benefits.  If you’d like to gain weight or slim down while toning up, focus your fitness routine on weightlifting.  If you are environmentally minded, your healthy and nutritious diet might mean avoiding GMO products.  Whatever your passions or personal beliefs, actively incorporate those into your decisions.

If you are changing your appearance by getting a new haircut or clothing, opt for a style that will help you look the part as you search for your next job opportunity.  If you plan to move so you can avoid relapse, consider a supportive area that puts you closer to family, work, a gym or even somewhere you find relaxing.

Recovery is a marathon, not a sprint.  Taking each day one at a time means tackling each challenge.  Focus on finding employment and making changes that matter.  With determination, purpose and motivation to change, it won’t be long until the successes out number the setbacks.

 

Mindful Relating

Last night I went to the Trident Philosophy Group where the topic of discussion was about “What is Love?” We had a great discussion and I had forgotten what it was like to be around people who have the capacity to talk about things that might be deep or challenging.

Most of the groups I was going to were all about how to limit our discussion or force people to conform to various rules of HOW to speak so as to not upset people. They were so co-dependent that they made intelligent and deeper relating impossible.

I understand that for beginners or people who have not developed much self-discipline that being in ‘safe’ groups is important, but I see these groups as more ‘enabling’ them to stay fearful of themselves and their own reactions to people. I suppose this is why I appreciate ‘spiritual’ groups where they teach people how to develop self-disciplines like mindfulness or meditation so that they can then better relate to themselves and others.

Heaven is a Choice

Visions_of_HeavenI wonder how many people are aware that life can be experienced as Perfect, Heavenly or Nirvana right NOW.  It does not seem to be that a lot of people are aware that they can have a perfect life, live in a perfect world and have all the peace, happiness, joy and love that they want, and they can have that right NOW, this very moment, IF they are open to it.

I interact with so many people who seem to have forgotten this or who maybe never knew this.  They look out at the world and see it as all fucked up; filled with evil and darkness…they seem to dwell on the idea that we are doomed.

Mind you that not everyone is that dark, depressed and depressing, but that most people seem to have that sickness to some degree or another, not being aware that this darkness is entirely optional, subjective and voluntary.

Sometimes people acknowledge that they have a choice, but then they go back to choosing the darkness.  I see this as only a habit, a very bad or unhealthy habit.  As a person who sees myself as one with all these people I do for them as I would want them do for me, which is to help me overcome this unhealthy habit.  I do this by reminding people they have a choice.

It is surprising how many people do not want to be reminded they have a choice, as if they WANT to miserable.

I knew a woman who took this attitude to its logical conclusion last year; she died at 50 years of age.  She was so miserable in her life that she admitted she wanted to die.  So when she was diagnosed with cancer she said she was glad.  She had no interest in waking up and realizing that her misery was a choice.  I suppose, given the culture she came from, that her fear of guilt was what kept her so afraid to even look at what she was doing that was causing her so much misery.

And I suppose that is why so many people HATE feedback on their choices that are making them so miserable.

Personally, I LOVE feedback on whatever I am doing that might be causing me misery.  I often do get feedback from people on the things I am doing that THEY don’t like.   These people tend to be the miserable people and they imagine I want to be around them, so they ‘give me advice’ on how to be around people like them so that I, TOO, can enable them to stay in their misery.  I say ‘too’ here because most of their friends don’t really care about them, they just want to enable them to stay in their misery, just as they are.  Misery loves company, they say.

And to be honest, these miserable people are not that miserable around most people, just people who are honest with them.  Most people are not honest so that is not a really big problem.

Yet, these people look out on the world and see it as ugly, sick, evil, bad or fucked up, and that is the quality of their life experience whenever they happen to look around themselves.

I do care about these people but I don’t want to enable them to stay stuck in their hell and I want to be around people who don’t want to stay in their hell.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder…and so it ugliness.  We CAN change how we see things and thus change how we experience what life is offering.  It is an option TO THOSE WHO ARE OPEN TO IT.

My real friends are open to it…

Being Tolerated

I guess I have come to accept that not only will I never be appreciated in life, but that I will probably never be TOLERATED by anyone.  This is sad to me but understandable.

The book I am writing, Mindful Listening, is designed to address this challenge that people have with other people, particularly people like me who speak our minds and who find judgment as a positive thing in life.

It is somewhat painful to write this, a pain that I not only accept but appreciate.  I feel the pain because I care about people.  Yet, I don’t feel trapped in this pain; I recognize I always have a choice.

I am feeling loneliness and loneliness is something I have written about before as being a CHOICE.  I have pointed out that it is silly to feel lonely given that there are 7+ billion people on the planet.  The only reason a person is feeling lonely is because they do not have the courage to reach out and connect with people.

Yet, at this time, I feel that I have TRIED to reach out and connect with people, and at every turn I have been rejected and shunned by those people.

Behind my loneliness is my feeling the pain of people’s fear they have of themselves and their reactions what I stimulate in them.  I want to feel this loneliness, this pain, for it connects me to people and helps to motivate me to find a way to help people.

I rarely dream of interacting with people any more.  If I do I imagine I am pissing off people (POP) as a talk radio DJ once described it.  To me, POP is about upsetting people, upsetting their slumber, waking them up.  I imagine that someday I will go back to public speaking where I intentionally say things that will upset someone, if not everyone, and then point out that only those who are asleep can be upset, and that my book, Mindful Listening, shows people how to develop the ‘ears to hear’ and that will enable them to ‘overcome the world’ as Jesus talked about.

One challenge with this ‘dream’ is that in practice when I do such things there is a lot of animosity directed at me and I still have a habit of reacting to that animosity with tension or resistance, which creates a lot of discomfort for me.  One benefit of the practice is that I get to work on my skills of loving myself IN SPITE of the animosity directed toward me.  Sometimes I feel intimidated by the challenge and other times I feel inspired by the benefit.  When I remember to practice loving myself then I choose the inspiration over the intimidation.

Of course, I just did this as I was writing this.

Practice is repetition and building a habit.  I get lots of practice living with the person I am living with.  She most often does not like me, or at least right now does not like me much, so she is constantly judging and rejecting me.  So I get lots of practice being at peace with judgment and rejection and embracing the habits of Emotional Self Care or loving myself.

I am so grateful to the universe that I was privileged enough to be able to wake up and recognize the value of things like Emotional Self Care and the value of loving myself.  I can see how others might not see or understand the value of such things, particularly as they seek out emotional care from others. For them, relationships are all about finding others who will stroke their egos and comfort them both physically and emotionally.

Yet, they cannot see nor will they even look at the inherent fear they feel at the thought that those people can and probably will reject them or leave them at some point in their life.  Although this may not be relevant to them in the immediate situation they still subconsciously think about it and carry with them the fear of this scenario.

Most people live in denial of this but it can be exposed if one talks to them about it and their reaction is often powerful and very negative.  Words are such a powerful tool for exposing people inherent dishonesty, particularly their dishonesty with themselves.

Since I am often one who sees these incongruities in a person’s life, and one who sometimes points them out, people find that being around me is intolerable. Sometimes I don’t even have to say anything for a person to recognize that I have realized their incongruities, which makes them uncomfortable with me.

After a while of being around this discomfort and associating that we me people no longer want to even tolerate my presence.  I wish I could find people who are like me, for I would love to be around someone who would care enough to point out my incongruities, the incongruities that are inherently causing me internal discomfort.

Rejection

rejection1Why does rejection hurt so much?  Why do people reject one another?

Yesterday I had someone I wanted to stay connected with unfriend me on Facebook and it was painful.  Intellectually I recognize that this person did this to protect himself; he was afraid of how he might react to what I might say to him.  He is or was a Muslim and had told me that his father was an abusive man, particularly to women and he did not want to be like his father.  From what I have seen of this guy he has been taught to be very afraid of HIMSELF and his own reactions to what life offers.

Simply put, he is hurting.

If I get sunburn I avoid the sun.  I am not really rejecting the sun (some could call me a sun worshipper); I am just avoiding the sun for a while until I can handle it better.

I recognize that guy is avoiding me for now because he cannot handle me and what I might offer to him.  He has low self esteem and just being around me shows him just how little he understands himself and how he has been conditioned to harm himself.

This does not take away from the fact that I hurt.

In my stupidity I blame this guy for my hurting thinking that “he caused my hurt.”  That is stupid.  He really did nothing more than disconnect from me in Facebook.  It was my reaction to that that causes me to hurt.  In my heart I am glad that he did what he had to do to take care of himself.

Years ago I would have done the same thing for I, too, did not know how to love myself any better than to disconnect from others.  In those days I was so ‘disconnected’ that my only dream was to avoid humanity at all cost, hopefully to live in the mountains in a small cabin far away from any others.

Eventually I realized that what I was running from was myself, not others.  Once I had learned how to love myself, to take care of myself and to stop my emotional (and physical) self abusive behavior, I no longer felt any need to get away from others.  In fact, I really enjoy other people, the more diverse the better.

People are so conditioned to abuse themselves emotionally with fear, guilt, shame, doubt and pessimism all of which can be stimulated by words naturally will run from any situation that might stimulate that abuse.

Having compassion for them is the first step in healing ourselves so that we can help the others heal themselves.  So when I am rejected don’t just remember that, I practice FEELING that compassion throughout my body, in every cell of my being.  This is a meditation that ‘heals’ the pain.

This meditation is what I just did to heal the pain I HAD from this friend’s rejection of me.  As I did this compassion meditation I could feel my body relax around the thought of the guy.  I could feel my appreciation for MYSELF and how I developed my ability to take care of myself.

Practice makes perfect…

The Gift

GiftMany times in my life someone has said something to me that upset me to the core of my being.  Sometimes I was so upset that I put out of my mind what the person said, but the effect of what they said stayed with me…I was devastated.

Originally at the time I could not see ‘The Gift’ in this experience but later as I watched how this experience manifested in my world I could see that in reality it was a gift, probably one of the greatest gifts that person could have given me, for they were inviting me to wake up to what I was thinking and doing that was creating such devastation in my world.  They were inviting me to choose to love myself and overcome my habit of not loved myself.

This is NOT something that is easy to see, particularly if one is still in the devastation or the reverberations of that devastation.  When in the drama of the devastation I would usually rationalize within myself, and sometimes with others, that I was in the ‘right’ and that the person who upset me was wrong.  The normal progression of this thinking was for me to see them as someone to avoid for they were not considerate of my feelings or emotions.  Never would I look at the fact that I was the one who was not being considerate of my feelings or emotions, I would just automatically assume the other person was responsible and I would go into some form of “righteous indignation” that everybody around me would support.  Naturally I would want to ‘punish’ them in some way and often that meant I would avoid them at the least.

This is a very hard thing to overcome, for our entire society or social support structures encourage us to continue in our unhealthy ways of thinking and behaving.  If everyone thinks this way then can it be wrong?

It took a tremendous amount of focus and discipline for me to see that it really was me that was the uncaring one here;  I was the one who was not caring about my feelings and emotions.

A major transition happened for me in my world when I began to see that when people upset me with their words that this was a gift and I started appreciating it as a gift.  The very act of appreciation was healing my emotional wound or re-training myself to react in a way that was healthy for me.

Today, I cannot remember all the people who have given me this wonderful gift so I cannot share with them now just how valuable I feel that gift was to me.  This thought saddens me but I accept it as part of the process.

Now, often, I see myself as the bearer of “The Gift” to people and most of the time the person who is receiving that gift does not have the presence of mind to be aware that it is a gift.  It has been a discipline for me to be the bearer of the gift and to recognize that most people will not have that presence of mind to appreciate the gift, at least in the present moment and maybe never be able to think of me and be grateful for what I have given them.

The ability to see the ‘big picture’ here is important for our own peace of mind.  It takes work to have the ability to see that in the long run most people who are gifted with an awaking experience like this will not be able to see the benefit of it when it is happening but that in the long run they will be better off because of it.

Of course, not all upsetting people is gifting them in a way that will sooner or later benefit them.  The best way to do this is when you can point out to them how it was their reactions that caused them harm and not what you said to them.  Still, most people will not get this, particularly in the present moment, but later that ‘seed’ of an idea can manifest into some self-knowledge or realization that will grow into a changed behavior that will benefit them in the long run.

When I think of this gifting I often think of Jesus and how he was gifting the people of his time.  Obviously most of them did not get that they were getting a gift; they just saw Jesus as some jerk that was pushing their buttons and someone to get rid of.  Hopefully, with all that animosity directed back at Jesus he was able to take care of himself recognize that in the long run he was serving those others and humanity in general.

I also think of Gandhi and Martin Luther King as they upset a lot of people in their time and most of those people could not see the Gift that they were receiving.

I recognize that it takes a particularly caring individual to make it a habit to gift people in the way that Jesus, Gandhi and MLK did, but we all can and do at times gift one other with our honesty, and honesty that can wake them up to a better life experience.  The important thing to remember is that we are gifting them and that in the long run they will be better off if they are even a little bit open to it.