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Brother Ishtananda--Seeking Self -- A talk by Brother Ishtananda


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Author Topic: Brother Ishtananda--Seeking Self -- A talk by Brother Ishtananda  (Read 2254 times)
Steve Hydonus
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« on: Jun 24, 2013 05:00 am »

Seeking Self -- A talk by Brother Ishtananda
(San Diego Temple, Sunday, June 23rd)

I was wandering around Hollywood Temple,
and went into the Sunday School class,
and asked an 11 year old girl the proverbial question,
"What do you want to be when you grow up?"
 
" I want to be Self-realized. ", she responded.

How many of us want to be Self-realized?

So many of us want to meet others -- the right partner, the right therapist, the right doctor, etc.    But finding 'Self' leads to a state of perfect peace and contentment.   
And what about finding God ?
Knowing one's Self is knowing God.

'Self' is interchangeable with Soul (Atman) -- the Supreme Consciousness. 
We do know God when we abide in the Truth.
So many people tell me that they can't really relate to a God that is wrathful or part of conventional religions.  I suggest they may want to forget about their 'relationship with God' and find their 'relationship with the Self'. 
Knowing one's Self (Atman / Soul) is knowing God.

It is very difficult to hold onto the after-effects of meditation. We can be a 'God of Peace', and turn into a 'Devil of Provocation'.   Our meditations are of little value, of little use, if we don't hold onto the after-effects of meditation.  But even if you are not meditating there are times when this Supreme Consciousness comes over us. We are watching a beautiful sunset, walking or just sitting quietly in nature, and the peace seems to come over us. 

If the limited 'personal self' (ego / ahamkara) is how we are trying to hold onto peace and joy, then how are we to hold onto the after-effects of meditation ?    Everything we (as the 'limited personal self') try to hold onto, will have to be let go -- for the 'limited personal self' resides and is part of the realm of the 'nature of duality'.   The nature of duality, means we will be lifted up and then we will be let down.  The limited 'personal self' is trying to hold onto the 'Self (Atman) Soul', but throughout the day we (the personal self) are thrown into the concrete mixer of the world (of duality) -- that's just where the limited personal self resides -- in the concrete mixer of the world.

So what is it that creates the sense of the 'I-ness' ? 

The left hemisphere of the brain is trying to put a story together about our life.  The left hemisphere will do anything to keep a belief - sticking to it no matter what.    There was a woman in a hospital in New York.  She kept saying that she was at her home in Maine.  The psychiatrist asked her, "If you are in your home in Maine, then why are there elevators in the building that she is in now?"  The patient explained to the doctor, "You wouldn't believe what it cost to have those elevators installed in my house".   So you see we have a spin-doctor who is trying to keep the story together of  'who I am '.   We believe our own press releases.

But who is the real "Being" ?
Consciousness is.  We are pure Divine Consciousness.   
Scientists are now telling us that the 'Substratum of our Being' is consciousness. 
The mind can only deal with thoughts and concepts.  We are far beyond qualities of thought.

We are trying to get beyond the 'personal self', to the 'individualized Self /(Atman)/(Soul)'.   
We are SatChitAnanda. 
-- Sat is Existence.
-- Chit is awareness and consciousness.
-- Ananda is the native quality of our existence which is Bliss. 
We are ever-conscious, ever-new bliss.  We are divine consciousness.   
The Spiritual Masters knew this.    Their reality is identified with this pure consciousness.

The mind and body identification is ever seeking pleasure, because there is the memory of that 'State of Bliss' of our 'Self/Atman/Soul' within us.  So what keeps us from knowing we are ever-conscious, ever-new bliss ?   The pains and aches of the body and the mind's chatter.   The sense of identification with the body, and the restless mind is the root of our misery. 

We (as pure divine consciousness centered in Self/Soul/Atman) can be 'Aware Of' our (personal self's) feelings and thoughts, yet not be 'identified with' our body and thoughts.   The thought of being a limited human-being is an illusion.   Somebody said once: 'I always wanted to be someone, but now I realize I should have been more specific'.   

What causes us to identify with the body and mind ?    It is ego or ahamkara.    The literal translation is "I experience" or "I do".

We are so afraid (or wrapped up) thinking the prescribed path of the Guru will not afford us to unfold the way we (ahamkara) envisioned.   So then, we become the devotee who does not want to surrender.
-- I do the meditation.
-- I do the service.
-- I do study masters teachings.
We become identified in the sense of what we do.
I am NOT making progress. I am NOT advancing.  There doesn't have to be this identification with the effort. We impose limitations on ourselves and then we try to transcend them.  We have (incorrectly) cognized ourselves as separate from Spirit.    So, how do we get away from such identification ?     There has to be that desire to get beyond, and to know what is greater than the I.   The self is what it considers itself to be -- so just one thought may redeem you.

As a person's concepts are; accordingly does maya bind him.   As a man thinketh, so is he.   You may say, "But I have a lot of experiences in knowing my personal story." 
How do we perceive ourselves differently ?    All of us have felt the gaps in our thoughts.   

The feelings of peace and bliss.   There comes a time when the mind has shut up and you are aware of the breath and aware of the mantra.  There begins to be little pauses between the Hong and the Sau.  That's when there is a wearing or building of a stairway towards the Self,  but as soon as we try to force or 'make it happen' the ego comes back in.   Yet even when your thoughts stop, you are still aware.    If you use the mantra Hong-Sau, you are the Self between the Hong and the Sau.

Don't be looking for special fireworks.  Our goal is to find pure awareness, and the Guru provides many spiritual approaches to achieve this pure awareness.   Being awake and aware of the self is something that works.   It is a direct approach.   The self is at no distance.  You are forever it.

There is the vastness of the sky and the ineffable beauty of the stars and billions of planets and galaxies and nebula.  This energy is being guided by a divine source, but we want to be in charge.  We think, "That intelligence may not do what I need it to do."   So we then want to be in charge of things.    Maya/Satan can only work when there is duality.    That is why we want to get out of it (duality).   Satan and Maya have no power when we are beyond duality.  As a person's consciousness is, accordingly does Maya bind him.
How do you think of yourself as free from bondage ?   Free from a mind restless with desire ?  Think of yourself as the Self.    Identify with the Self.    Even if you're not there.   
Where do you go?  You think of yourself as a cloud moving in the sky.  But the sky doesn't move.    We are that sky not the clouds passing by.     Identification is the key.    So consider, what are we identified with?

Listen to what I have said....what I'm saying.
The mind will tell you why it should be doing something else.
Why turn your life over to a spin doctor in the left brain?

OM
Shanti
Amen
« Last Edit: Aug 19, 2013 01:04 am by Steve Hydonus » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #1 on: Jun 24, 2013 05:10 am »

wow, she seems very wise and influential
11 years old huh
ty
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peace ~ <3
Steve Hydonus
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« Reply #2 on: Jun 25, 2013 10:19 am »

Steve,
Where and When did you hear Brother Ishtananda speak ?

Namaste2All How is one such as yourself? To well to know? It is very beautiful what you're doing. I saw brother at service Sunday June 23, 2013 at the San Diego SRF temple where I wrote down notes for his talk. Thank-You for cleaning them up and editing them. Look and you will see I have put some more notes down. Sorry I have not called yet. This seemed more important for NOW. 

The mad rush of life seems to be coming in at all angles. i am experiencing the United Clones of America everyday in every town I venture in. Even if the food and service are horrible I can count on the robotic responses and the plastic smiles of corporate America.  Grin Is there anything else? Have a nice day!   Tongue I offered some face creme to a waitress who looked like her face might crack when she forcefully smiled and gave me the stilted routine: Would you like to make a dinner of it? Coke and french fries included...as part of her routine.   My response: What-trying to fatten me up for the kill?..and would i like it here or to go etc. I said some where in between.  Cry You know-in between the mantra where the silence is-where the self resides.  Wink

No doubt we either listen to the spin doctor of our own thoughts or repeat the thoughts of those spin doctors in corporate minds.Still we listen to the spin doctor. I am just an observer. This too will pass. We are the Great Self.
When we turn down the volume of our own reactions and that of the spin doctor-however he manifests-we listen to the silent voice within telling us the story of the great Sellf.

I find moments of hope and solitude between this mad rush. I am putting into practice what Amma showed us in her service to us. i share it with you Namaste2All. We share together with others, who we  are fortunate to have here at spiritual portal. Amma is always happy. She does not look for reality to conform to her own story. She listens to no spin doctor. She is the bliss and ever
new joy of the Self. That joy still inspires me. To sit there close to her and watch that ever new joy pour out of her consciousness.It was like the Hidden Springs we saw. Just forever bringing a refreshing inspiration in our lives.


Brother left a message for you. He hopes you're doing well. He said to come back when you can and stay in the Self.   Cheesy

p.s. spin doctor: a person responsible for ensuring that others interpret events from a certain point of view. lol
« Last Edit: Aug 24, 2013 08:40 am by namaste2All » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #3 on: Jun 26, 2013 08:40 pm »

I would like my clone meal "somewhere in-between"
(not for 'here', not 'to go'...  "somewhere in-between"...)

She may think on the surface, 'oh great, I got some smart-ass here... I just wanna get to my break and smoke some clone air.'
 but then deep down, maybe her soul takes a leap and laughs !
(later on... hours later, once she gets out of the concrete mixer,
and things still she might remember "in-between",
and laugh...
ha, I get it !

smiles

One could only hope! Hope springs eternal!
Smoke...some.....clone......air....
Wwhhhhoooooooooooooooooooaa!!!!!
The great United clones of America have already let me know  her cigarettes have taken her a long way baby!
« Last Edit: Jun 26, 2013 10:56 pm by Jitendra Hydonus » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #4 on: Jun 28, 2013 11:54 am »

I would like my clone meal "somewhere in-between"
(not for 'here', not 'to go'...  "somewhere in-between"...)

She may think on the surface, 'oh great, I got some smart-ass here... I just wanna get to my break and smoke some clone air.'
 but then deep down, maybe her soul takes a leap and laughs !
(later on... hours later, once she gets out of the concrete mixer,
and things still she might remember "in-between",
and laugh...
ha, I get it !

smiles

Namaste2All would you like to have it here or to go? Or perhaps in between where the breath stops and the mind is quiet. A place where you're neither here nor there, up or down, inside or out; you're just pure awareness, pure consciousness, bliss, happiness and joy. I take joy in the fact that there are others that are here who know what I'm talking about.  Practice it and you will no doubt find that the mind does not want to be still. The mind is used to moving around inthis world and wants to constantly experience something on the outside. It is used to the body moving it is used to action. But if you have patience with it. It will eventually calm down and you will feel what I am talking about.

Much love to you all. I pray for each and everyone of you and I am fortunate to have you here....making this place wonderful!
You increase my happiness!

Jitendra
« Last Edit: Aug 24, 2013 08:41 am by namaste2All » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #5 on: Jun 28, 2013 08:20 pm »

thx steve
post some more talks of ishtanand
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« Reply #6 on: Apr 19, 2014 03:20 am »

I started thinking about the madness around us. I remember Brother Ishtananda speaking about the spin doctor we listen to in our own head and I remember talking to Brock on the phone and he was speaking to me about how each of us lives in his own creation inside his or her own head.

Lately it just amazes me some of the tales people convince themselves of. I think that one of the ways that many people can go on in these lengthy fantasies is because instead of working out the difficulties they encounter in relationships they just move on to another relationship if it is available.

I have seen people storm off, create scenes, disown people and say 'come and get your toys - it's over'. I have just been witnessing these things with a smile yet wondering what the message is from above.  Undecided  It seems to have more recurrence with women than men. Men are more able to just brush you off with out the emotional fanfare.
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« Reply #7 on: Aug 12, 2019 07:27 am »

The mind will be telling you to do something else...why turn your mind over to the spin-doctor in your brain?

So many of us want to meet others -- the right partner, the right therapist, the right doctor, etc.    But finding 'Self' leads to a state of perfect peace and contentment.   
And what about finding God ?
Knowing one's Self is knowing God.
« Last Edit: Aug 12, 2019 07:34 am by Steve Hydonus » Report Spam   Logged

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