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Sunday, July 05, 2015


Aa very interesting site is  I reproduce here some of the page, and leave it you.
Heath Thompson - 'Returning To The Source Is Stillness' - Interview by Iain McNayConsciousness - Transformations (loaded 12 June 2015)
Heath Thompson - 'Returning To The Source Is Stillness' - Interview by Iain McNay (watch this programme)
Heath's spirituality began by joining a Buddhist practice under the teachings of the Vietnamese Zen monk Thich Nhat Hahn. He joined a two-year distance learning course called Foundation of Buddhism but quit believing that if there is an Absolute Truth it would be simple and not require academic discussion to find it. His Realisation occurred over two, perhaps three 'moments'; the first happened the day he quit the course, 'I was sitting in the garden absent-mindedly watching bees and insects flying around while drinking tea and I suddenly noticed a feeling appear in my stomach that vanished the moment I witnessed it, and an inner voice said to me "you will never feel that again." So he decided to simply sit without a real reason and just be silent and see if it returns - and it did, long enough for him to realise what was being expressed; an endless pool of stillness. 'My life totally changed a month later when getting out of bed I glanced through the window at the sky and saw, felt, heard the same Presence I had felt on the inside and I knew at once all is One, there is no inside or outside, no here or there, no birth or death, nowhere to go, nothing to do - all is as it is. I laughed at myself for even though I suspected the Truth to be simple I had not expected it to be ablaze wherever I looked. This happened in October 2009 and I spent until February 2011 feeling unable to express what I knew as my sangha had people with over 20 years experience of practice who didn't like my attempts to question some of the teachings. In the end I decided to leave and spend my time learning from nature.'
Debra Wilkinson - 'Awake And Ready' - Interview by Iain McNayConsciousness - Transformations (loaded 06 June 2015)
Debra Wilkinson - 'Awake And Ready' - Interview by Iain McNay (watch this programme)
Debra was the child of an alcoholic Mother who started seeking because she could not live with her mind's conditioning anymore. She was a mass of anxiety, hurt and plagued by the past and terrified by the future. She started to meditate which helped to lift the heavy energies she had acquired. She developed a very painful nerve condition and learnt to be with the pain. Found that a dreadful curse became a true blessing. She would spend 5 hours a day in meditation and got to the point where, 'I was done.' 'I thought I knew who I was but suddenly I wasn't that anymore. So I sat with it and asked 'Who Am I?' 'Who or what is that?' And the answer came 'I am God!' I realised in that moment I am God in expression and now my mind was free. Now there is just me and God and me knowing that I am God.'
Linda Clair - 'I Am Enlightened' - Interview by Renate McNayNon Duality - Awakenings (loaded 29 May 2015)
Linda Clair - 'I Am Enlightened' - Interview by Renate McNay (watch this programme)
Linda was born in Sydney in 1958. She had virtually no interest in meditation or spiritual matters until the age of 37, when she was introduced to Peter Jones, who became her first teacher. This meeting was an intense experience for her. There was a depth to the communication she had never experienced before, and it triggered a search for freedom, which was soon the major focus of her life. At this time she had two teenage children and was running a small business, but she managed to make time for intensive meditation. In 1997 she had a profound awakening during a ten-day retreat in northern New South Wales. She later described the experience as 'deeper than bliss'.There was a marked change in her after the awakening, which was really a very strong glimpse of enlightenment. She knew now what was possible, and she also knew that she would not be satisfied until that state became permanent. She maintained the humble attitude of a student and continued to practice.During this time she met the Japanese Zen Master, Hogen Yamahata, who also impressed her with his deeply enlightened presence and humility.In 2004 she travelled to Japan and spent six weeks at a Zen monastery with Hogen-san's Master, Harada Tangen Roshi, known as Roshi Sama. Her time with him was intense. She sensed she was close to the culmination of her journey. She returned to Australia in a deeply detached, peaceful state. Roshi Sama gave her the name Dai'an Jishin, which translates as 'deep peace, compassionate heart/mind'. Her search ended during a ten-day retreat with Hogen-san at Springbrook, in the mountains behind the Gold Coast in Queensland.'Everything changed. All fear disappeared. I was left with nothing and nothing to lose. The depth of peace and satisfaction overwhelmed me, and it continues to deepen every day. Life is immediate. There is no desire for anything more or different. This is enough.'

Consciousness - Transformations (loaded 19 June 2015)
Rory O'Connor - 'I Can't Do This Anymore' - Interview by Iain McNay (watch this programme)
Rory was the youngest of 8 children and raised in the Catholic tradition. 'I remember looking at my parent's life and thinking that it seemed like a kind of hell, a trap that they 'believed' they could not get out of. From where I stood, frustration seemed to dog their lives.' He became a drummer in a heavy metal band but became very depressed and stopped playing music. But he kept searching, reading, started TM, and openings started to appear. 'At some point in my late thirties I had a real moment of clarity, a paradigm shift. I realised that what I understood of quantum science and the eastern traditions was essentially describing the same thing ie. the concept of everything appearing out of nothing through the observer. From then on 'reality' seemed a lot less 'solid'. 'Concurrent events in my personal life had also conspired to create an actual 'breakdown' moment where the pain of trying to keep everything 'together' caused me to smash the kitchen table to pieces with my bare hands only to find myself sitting in the rubble saying repeatedly "I can't do this anymore". It may not sound like it but this 'moment of surrender' was the best thing that ever happened to me.' 'When you know that you know nothing then you are free to consider anything and believe nothing. It doesn't matter how you describe it or label it life simply is what it is and the description/label is meaningless'

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Home made tomato soup

I have been remembering the Heinz tomato soup I used to enjoy in England (I once worked for Heinz in their London factory and used to get staff discount on slightly damaged cans.)  Unfortunately we cannot get Heinz soups here; some Heinz products - vinegar, ketchup - but not soups.

It occurred to me that I might be able to make tomato soup using tomato paste.  Heinz used huge cans of tomato concentrate, so I figured tomato paste was something near what they use. I would need onion powder, garlic powder, milk powder, spices. salt, pepper. No problem with the garlic powder, but onion powder was more expensive than I was prepared for (sold in small jars, that's why I guess) so I sliced up a medium onion and diced it small, thinking I might put the soup through the blender, a messy business.

First I cooked the onion over low heat in a little oil, then when it was soft I opened the tomato paste (75 g) and warmed it in the same saucepan.  I added some baking soda, to make it somewhat less acidic so the milk didn't curdle so easily.  Not much, though, half a teaspoon or so. Then a heaped teaspoon of garlic powder.

In a separate saucepan I transferred about half the tomato paste/onion mixture over low heat and added water till the mixture was something resembling soup, but still thicker.  I stirred in a couple of heaped tablespoons of milk powder (actually "Bear Brand" which is a product containing some milk but mostly other substances such as vegetable oils. It's used a lot here as a milk substitute and is rather sweeter than milk, but since we are making tomato soup and might even want to add some sugar I thought that would be ok.)

This mixture tasted rather too milky so I added more tomato paste, tasting as I went. When there seemed the right balance I added a pinch of cloves, about half a teaspoon of oregano powder, salt, heaped teaspoon of brown sugar and more pepper.  I wanted to add paprika but my paprika jar was unnaccountably empty so that had to be left out.

I recently bought some balsamic vinegar.  Our store occasionally does have unusual products and I bought this because I had never seen it before. It's delicious, made from grape juice and very concentrated, somewhat viscous and I like to put a teaspoonful in a shot glass and sip it.  I put about half a teaspoon of this balsamic vinegar into the soup and I think it made an improvement.

Only remained to add a little more water, re-heat and serve.  Two servings (there's just Rose and me.)  It's all gone so it must have been OK, and it never went through the blender!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Who are you? Re-blogged from Graham Ellis's blog at

August 18, 2014
HOMEward Bound

Here’s the dude Joe Kenny – currently chilling in a wooden beach house in Japan with a bottle of fine wine – with HOMEward Bound. As always, enjoy . . .

    Dear Reader,

    So, we have Rene Descartes to thank for the notion – apparently accepted wholesale among the population of planet earth – that an I must exist to be the thinker of thoughts. “I think, therefore I am.” Tosh!

    Clearly, old Rene decided where he wanted to end up – defending and maintaining his ego-centric view of the world – and then described at great length how he arrived there. Little did he know, his famous adage does not resonate with the actuality of the “awakened” state.

    One who considers herself to be an individual is reinforced in that belief by adopting the assumption that nothing but the individual could possibly be the thinker of thoughts. According to this reasoning, it must follow that the individual is doing the thinking; generating thoughts and making observations and decisions mentally. The one who makes this assumption and accepts this conclusion as valid  is what I call the assumed individual.

    So, dear non-seekers,  your most fundamental notions of who you are condemn you to the basic error of identifying yourself with the assumed individual. Based on this apparently reasonable but fatally flawed conclusion about yourself, your every perception and experience is personalized as “your” thoughts; your perception; your experience; your fame and fortune; your this and your that.

    As such, the individual is the epicentre of her own cosmos and the mistaken identification with the assumed individual deepens constantly and ever distracts you from suspecting the reality of what you are. Accustomed to this world view, it appears to be madness to question its validity. After all, you might say, is it not self-evident?

    To which one might answer: yes, it certainly seems to be so. Doesn’t everyone accept this? Surely, it is a given in every human’s life?

    Well, not quite everyone. Those who have apperceived the holographic nature of the assumed individual, those who have come to rest in their identification with the Absolute, know the ego-centric view of the world to be false. These abide in their non-individuality and know themselves to be none other than ALL THAT IS. In other words, those who have found themselves at HOME know with extreme clarity that the assumed individual is a fiction.

    Many know from experience that it can be frustrating to reach a mental understanding of the falsity of the assumed individual, only to find that the fictional individual can never awake because what it really is has never been asleep. So, what’s all this talk about awakening? This is merely word play. Words intended to point to the reality – let us not speak of “truth” – can be misinterpreted when taken more literally than was intended. Therefore, be like a child attending a pantomime; suspend your disbelief and just go along with the notion for a while. Your worries and your life will be waiting for you when you return.

    Yes, of course there is – or seems to be – a human living in the world. We may say that person is real enough, relatively speaking, as we know too well its suffering the pains and enjoyments of life as we know it. However, it is the one that you think you are that is no more real than a pool of water in a mirage. No amount of thinking will enable you to see this and no amount of effort will enable the assumed individual to see that it is not in actuality the water in the mirage that it has always believed itself to be.

    Some non-seekers – such as once I supposed myself to be – feel helpless and cheated to be led to the threshold of the pathless path only to find that there is nothing they can do to travel the path to the destination on the far side of the gateless gate: HOME. They are told repeatedly that any striving, any action and any practices would merely reinforce the falisty of the assumed individual which would be futile, at best, if not counter-productive. In short, there is now way to get themselves HOME.

    But is this necessarily the case? It most emphatically is not the case! Take heart.

    You may have read on this blog and in the potent mini-books of Graham Ellis, that there is something that anyone can do to reveal that the assumed individual is not who and what they really are. That is: to deepen one’s awareness of being to the point where one’s apparent point of perception slips back, as it were, to a state in which there is a silent knowing of beingness and of what it is in reality.

    There is a seeing that the assumed individual is observed and hence one cannot be that. Thoughts are merely observed and hence one can neither be the thoughts nor the mind. It is only when the habit of claiming thoughts as “your” thoughts is discarded that one opens to experiencing that one is not the thinker; one is not in reality the originator of thoughts. Thoughts merely arise.

    The apperception of the Reality seems to be facilitated by stepping back through this shift of awareness from involvement in everything that is happening inside yourself to a state of  beingness which is devoid of personality. At some point, the awareness seems to step behind the mind (agh, words!) and in an instant there is only knowing.

    As this state is not experienced by or with the mind, it cannot be reached by thoughts and cannot be comprehended in relative terms. Equally, as this state exposes the assumed individual as merely the water in the mirage, this knowing cannot be known by the assumed individual in its ego-centric centre of perception. For this reason, you are told in various texts that the you that you think you are can never be “enlightened”. The dreamer cannot be awake whilst lost in a dream, so to speak.

    The old cliche may serve our understanding once more: when the light appears the darkness is dispelled. Darkness is merely the absence of light just as the assumed individual is merely the absence of the certain knowing that one is not the fictitious person one had always assumed oneself to be. There is no water on the road ahead; it is merely the appearance of water where there is none. The illusion of the mirage stands exposed for what it is; the notion that one was the assumed individual fractures and falls away.

    If, metaphorically speaking, what you are in reality is like a lamp that shines with extraordinary clarity and brightness, then one’s accustomed – ego-centric – perspective of perception is misled by the darkness prevailing as a result of the concealment of the lamp by an impenetrable covering.

    The lamp, as it were, is not something to attain. It is what you have always been in reality. Metaphorically speaking, all that needs to happen is for the impenetrable covering of the lamp to be chipped away until it becomes more transparent and fractures. Openness to the concept that one is not the thinker and therefore not the assumed individual seems to set in motion a mechanism that brings about the catastrophic failure of the lamp covering. This is not “your” doing, though “you” may facilitate the process by switching your awareness in the manner described above (and elsewhere on this website).

    Thoughts arise and you may allow them to pass by without taking delivery of them. The more often you do this, the easier it seems to get. Knowing this, switch your awareness away from the thoughts to your fundamental beingness and abide in the space between thoughts. It is not easy at first as it is an exercise to which you are not accustomed. Persevere until you get the hang of it and don’t beat yourself up if you are distracted time and time again. At some point, you may find that it is obvious that you are not the assumed individual; thus begins the process of dis-identification.

    Experiencing dis-identification with the assumed individual may be an unsettling process. Suddenly, the familiar context of being who you think you are is displaced – as if you have stepped into a vacuum. You might feel like an astronaut cut loose from the space ship whilst on a space walk; tumbling through space. Your habitual frame of reference disappears and in the word-free silence that ensues your awareness may come to rest on breaths not thoughts; not memories; not hopes or fears. None of that head noise!

    Do not be troubled; when this happens you are HOMEward bound. Settle into the peace and enjoy the ride. Bon voyage!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Hands off the tiller

Over the past two years or so this blog has completely changed.  It's because my whole way of life has changed.  I am letting my life steer itself.

This started  when I began to realise that the notion of free will that almost everyone believes they have is a mistake.  Give that idea up and your life will run more smoothly.  Plus, you won't be regretting choices or wondering what to choose, or debating with yourself over the correct course of action.  Just do what appears to be appropriate to do, it may seem like I am making choices but I am not worried about whether they are good choices or not, which I certainly often used to do.

The Nature of Reality II

1. It's hard to imagine what the world would look like if we weren't there to experience it, simply because the act of imagining it involves our presence.  Would there necessarily be any world if we were not there to experience it?  It would be simply a matter of assertion, about which there could be no direct evidence.
2. Since we cannot demonstrate the existence  of the world when we are not experiencing it, we have to doubt it.
3. We cannot even demonstrate the existence of the world when we are apparently experiencing it.  I have already said in the previous post that we perceive only images.  Even if we were to concede the existence of eyes and a brain, what we are perceiving must be created by us somehow, there's no way of establishing that those images represent some reality external to us.

There is a big mental problem here.  For someone like me who has been interested in the scientific view of the universe for a lifetime, it's a very big change to start questioning the very existence of that universe.  It's an exciting feeling but how can I actually start to believe in what logical enquiry is telling me? For eight decades I have been believing stuff that now, upon careful enquiry, starts to look like mere assumptions, mental constructions - for there can be no doubt that that is what our "knowledge" of the universe amounts to.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Philosophical thoughts about the nature of reality

For a while I am going to use this blog to clarify my philosophy regarding the nature of the world by writing it down as clearly as possible.

1.      Contact with objects in the world is through our senses.  I only know the perceptions of those objects coming to me through my senses, I do not know the objects directly, since I have no direct contact with them.
2.      I seem to have direct contact with my senses, though.  You might even say I am my perceptions. They are at least a part of me, if not all of me.  I don’t really  have a perception, since without someone to perceive it there can be no perception.
3.      For a perception to exist, there must be something perceived, real or imaginary.  Now I come to think about this, there does not seem to be any way to tell the difference between a real object of perception and an imaginary one.  That at least suggests that all percepts could be imaginary and we would never know it.
4.      So a perception needs a perceiver and something to be perceived, otherwise there is no perception.
5.      Without any perceptions, I am just potentially aware.  I can hardly say I am aware if there is nothing to be aware of.
6.      But perhaps I can be deep asleep, not dreaming.  Am I aware then?  I don’t know.  My senses are ready to work, I can be woken by a sound or a touch, or even a smell. So there must be some awareness, even though there isn’t anything to be aware of.
7.      Since perceiver-perception-perceived cannot be dismembered without disappearing, all I know about the world is a part of me by virtue of its being perceived by me.
8.      But the world does not feel to be a part of me.  For over eighty years I have been  used to regarding it as separate from me, and arguing that it isn’t, as I have just been doing, isn’t enough to convince me.  I am a creature of habit.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Radical teaching

I ask you only to stop imagining that you were born, have parents, are a body, will die and so on. Just try, make a beginning — it is not as hard as you think.

Nisargadatta Maharaj

McKenna, Jed (2010-02-28). Spiritual Warfare (The Enlightenment Trilogy) (p. 119). Wisefool Press.


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