On the Other Hand

September 11, 2008

Last week I participated in a discussion where one of the participants was struggling to accept the spiritual awakening they were experiencing.  Today we will look at some ideas that can help us to balance our spiritual awakening with our existing beliefs and behaviors.

 

Email distribution

For some unexplained reason the email distribution for Tuesday did not go out on schedule.  The post was uploaded in time and the RSS feed even updated correctly.  The post for Tuesday was picked up and included in the email distro for Wednesday, so that became a two for one.

 

As I have said many times before, FeedBurner is a free service.  Most of the time they do a great job.  They have an occasional hiccup, but since none of us are paying anything we must accept the occasional outage.

 

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On the one hand

I was a part of a discussion last week where someone was struggling with some new understandings.  They were saying that they heard a lot of truth in what was being discussed and they were being drawn to that truth.

 

However, this individual was being torn by their current beliefs and behaviors.  Most of us experience the same conflict as we begin to travel our spiritual path.  We have an existing way of living that we think we know.  For some reason we have become unhappy with that life and are searching for something else.  When we find something that resonates with us we can get torn between the two.

 

Today we will look at an example of how to begin the resolution of this internal conflict.  An approach that I have used is to start by placing both hands in front of you.  Imagine one hand – let’s say the right hand – as holding the new understandings.  Imagine the left hand as grasping your current understandings and behaviors.

 

Let’s take a look at the left hand first.  In that hand you have your current understandings of spirituality, religion, your relationships, your family, and your possessions.  Whether you realize it or not, your unhappiness is also in your left hand. 

 

At one time we all thought that everything we ever need would be in this hand.  After all, what more do we need?  We are trained from birth that we do not need anything more than family, religion, possessions, and relationships.

 

Let’s look at the last item in our left hand – our unhappiness.  If everything we needed was in our left hand then unhappiness would not be there.  But because that unhappiness is there we have decided to look outside of that hand.

 

On the other hand

The reason that there is something in our right hand is because of the unhappiness we found in our left hand.  Somewhere we sensed that the unhappiness was strong enough to cause us to look for something else.  That something else became our newly found spiritual path.

 

We have begun to travel that path and have discovered a lot of things that will not fit in our left hand.  We put those discoveries in our right hand and start to ask ourselves what to do with them.  Many of these new understandings are clearly in conflict with what is in our left hand.

 

The problem is that these new understandings resonate very strongly with us.  That resonance is so strong that we know that we cannot drop these new understandings from our right hand.  Now we are being pulled very strongly by the attraction to our right hand.  Yet we are attached to the familiar and comfortable things in our left hand.  No wonder we feel torn between the two.

 

What to do, what to do

The resolution of this feeling of being torn can be a challenge.  There can be many steps, but we will start with the first step.  I am sure that this topic will come up again in future posts.  Anyone who wants to discuss this topic further can make a comment on this post and we can begin the discussion immediately.

 

Here is how I solved the internal conflict between my left and right hands.  It took awhile, but I eventually I came out the other side much more peaceful and happy.

 

My first step was to acknowledge and accept the situation.  In my left hand I had a bunch of stuff that was familiar, but that was causing unhappiness.  In my right hand I had other stuff that was pulling me very strongly.  The stuff in my right hand seemed so truthful, yet I could not let go of what was in my left.

 

Eventually I accepted that my unhappiness was in my left hand along with all the other stuff.  I realized that it was that stuff that was causing the unhappiness.  This did not mean that I could let go of it easily.  It was just a realization, but no action had been taken.

 

Likewise I realized that the stuff in my right was leading me towards my true happiness.  Even though I could not yet let go of the stuff in the left hand, I could try to utilize some of the things in my right hand.

 

At first it was simple things.  Like beginning to see that happiness comes from inside, not outside.  Then I learned more about the true self and the false self.  I looked at what spirituality really is and I even started to understand that fear is a behavior that we learn.

 

Don’t get me wrong.  All these investigations did not happen immediately.  I was very attached to my existing beliefs and behaviors in my left hand.  I would merely dabble my right hand in the water of my new understanding to see what it was like.

 

Gradually I began to see that the only thing in my right hand was my true happiness.  Every time I went back to my left hand the only thing I found was my unhappiness.

 

It took many years of dabbling to convince me to let go of what was in my left hand.  After that it took more years of changing my behavior so that I was no longer holding onto what was in my left hand.

 

Eventually my right hand won and I am much more able to notice when my left hand is holding on.  I am also much happier.

 

Trust yourself

To summarize how to resolve the internal conflict that usually comes when we start on our spiritual path – trust yourself.  Your true self is in your right hand.  Your false self is in your left hand.  Trust that your right hand will guide you towards your true happiness.  After all, your left hand has never given you any happiness.  Why would it start to do so now?

 

That’s all for today.

 

Until tomorrow –

 

Es kava turen hai

We work towards an identical goal.

 

 

Discuss & Comment

We do not want this blog to be a fountain of words from one view point.  We welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment when the mood strikes you.

 

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False Self is an “It”

August 29, 2008

Thankful Friday

Our regular readers will remember that every Friday we start our post by expressing our gratitude to those around us.  This week I want to thank several of our readers for their feedback and suggestions about ideas they want to explore.  Thanks for the feedback and please keep it coming.

 

We also had a few email exchanges this week that were very thoughtful.  I appreciate all of our readers who took the time to write me this week.  Now, if we could only get these dialogs moved to comments on the blog where everyone can participate and benefit…

 

Our final thank you for the week goes to our new readers.  The number of hits on the site went up this week as did our email subscriber count.  As always we close with our appreciation to WordPress and FeedBurner for providing the free services that make this possible.

 

Housekeeping

Monday, September 1st is the Labor Day holiday in the United States.  I will be taking the day off.  The next post will be Tuesday, September 2nd.  Have a great weekend.

 

False self is an “it”

As you have been reading this blog over the last few weeks we have discussed the concepts of true self and false self at great length.  If you look carefully, I have always referred to false self as “it”.  Today I will discuss the reasons why I use this type of reference.

 

We identify with false self easily

One of the aspects of false self that was discussed several times recently is the idea that it is created for each lifetime.  Every time we reincarnate we create a new false self.  Our true self is the source of all of our knowledge and learning.  Why should we treat false self as a part of ourselves?

 

False self is temporary.  False self is just a physical tool which we use for a lifetime.  We do not take any of our possessions with us when we die.  Why should we take our false self?

 

We have repeated many times that all of our unhappiness, fears, possessiveness, anger, etc. come from false self.  Why would true self want to take that with us after we complete the lifetime?

 

Over the last few weeks we have looked extensively at the reasons why we are so attached to our false self identity.  For all those reasons and many more I always attempt to portray false self as something that is external to false self.  I always attempt to take away any identification with false self.

 

False self is external to true self.  False self is not “me”.  False self is not “us”.  False self is an “it”.  That “it” is not part of us, true self.

 

View false self as external

There are some religious and spiritual teachings and practices that do not make this clear distinction about false self.  If there is one thing that I hope to get across in the body of my writing it is this:

 

False self is not part of me – true self.  False self is merely an external tool that true self uses during a single lifetime.  The more I view false self as external to me the easier I recognize my true self.

 

It is so easy to think that false self is a part of true self.  We have spent several weeks looking at the reasons for this.  Everyone else around us views false self as their identity.  It is very difficult not to do the same.

 

The bottom line is our happiness.  I have learned that there is nothing more important in this world right now than for all of us to find and understand their true happiness.  We began our entire month of discussions on this subject by showing that happiness comes from true self.

 

The vast majority of the world is looking for their happiness from and within their false self.  We have mentioned numerous times that happiness comes internally from true self.  If false self is external to true self, how are we ever going to find happiness through false self?

 

Once again, the more that we can view false self as something which we created this lifetime, the more we will be able to view it as external to true self.  The more we can see that the unhappiness, anger, violence, and fears as part of the false self identity the easier it will be to externalize false self.

 

Have a great weekend

That is all for today, this week, and this month.  Once again, we will not be posting on Monday.  Our next post will be Tuesday, September 2nd.

 

Have a great weekend!

 

Until Tuesday –

 

Es kava turen hai

We work towards an identical goal.

 

 

Discuss & Comment

We do not want this blog to be a fountain of words from one view point.  We welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment when the mood strikes you.

 

WordPress forces all comments to be moderated.  We usually check for comments at least twice a day.  So do not be surprised if it takes a few hours for you to see your comment.

 

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Email

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Copyright

© Copyright 2008 by KanDu Associates, LLC 

 

The content of this blog is copyrighted by KanDu Associates.  All rights are reserved by the owner.  For reprint information please email:

 

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Tips to Get Yourself in the Moment

August 27, 2008

Yesterday we illustrated the link between the concepts of true self, false self and being in the moment.  We heard that false self can never be in the moment.  Hopefully we felt and understood that true self is always in the moment.

 

So what did we learn from this?  I hope we learned that our happiness comes from being true self and in the moment at all times.

 

Are you ready for a few tips about how to get yourself in the moment?  Let’s go!

 

Take a chill pill

When we are upset, angry, frustrated, sad, etc., we are not in the moment.  The most important thing that we can do when we notice that we are not in the moment is to calm down.  Chill out.  Relax.

 

Eckhart Tolle has done some excellent work with his explanations of how to calm down and get ourselves in the now.  He recommends that we become silent.  Then we take a few slow breaths.  As we take those breaths, we begin to sense our body.  We continue taking deep breaths, we watch those breaths move in and out of the body, and we gradually calm ourselves down.  As we calm ourselves down we next start to observe our thoughts.

 

Observe yourself

As we calm ourselves we begin to have enough concentration that we can begin to observe our thoughts.  When we are upset, the internal thoughts, the chatter if you will, are so loud and so intense that we are unable to think clearly.  Part of the reason that we calm ourselves down is to begin to watch our thoughts.

 

As we begin to observe our thoughts we are able to watch for the harmful ones.  Acting out our harmful thoughts is a good way to cause ourselves a mess.  When we are upset we bombard ourselves with so many thoughts that we cannot sort through them.  We react to some of them and a few of those thoughts are harmful.  That is how we create our messes.

 

As we learn to observe our thoughts it will take a little time to learn to see the harmful ones.  That is fine.  This is a skill, and like any other skill it requires practice.  The important thing is to start.  Take every opportunity you have to observe your thoughts.  For now, don’t worry about doing anything about them, just learn to watch them.

 

We have looked at the idea of observation many times on this site.  I have found it to be the most fundamental skill required to be in the moment.  Observation must be practiced at all times in order to stay in the moment.

 

Ignore the chatter

A few paragraphs ago we talked about the chatter in our heads.  As we learn to observe our thoughts we begin to hear the chatter.  That chatter is nothing but false self nonsense.  However, we have been listening to and acting out this chatter for our entire life.  We think this chatter is ourself.

 

This chatter is the reason that we learn to calm down.  The chatter gets so loud and our reaction so immediate that we wind up out of control.  We can be out of control angry, violent, depressed, possessive, euphoric, and many more.  The point is that we are no longer observing the chatter.  We have become the chatter.

 

As we calm down and then start to observe, the chatter will return.  As we begin this process of observation we usually don’t even notice that the chatter has returned.  The chatter is so pervasive that we expect it to be there.  It returns and we are off to the races again.  Do not worry or get upset.  Eventually we will notice that we are unhappy.  We will ask ourselves “what happened?”  We will realize that we have to get back in the moment.

 

Do not be afraid to fail

In another post I compared learning this technique to learning to ride a bicycle.  In many ways this is the appropriate analogy.  Each starts with not knowing how, being afraid of the task, failing as we learn, and eventually learning to perform the task.

 

Do not be afraid to fail.  Chances are that you will.  We all start to learn to be in the moment.   We all start to see how much happier we are when we are in the moment.  Then we all make a sharp turn and go off on a tangent and create a new mess.  This is all part of the process.

 

Very few people have ever learned to be in the moment and then never gotten out of the present again.  For most of us it is a skill that we must practice, even when we have made great advancement.

 

I will not claim to always be in the moment.  However, I will claim that I have learned enough about staying in the moment to understand that it is my source of happiness.  I also have learned enough about staying in the moment that I am able to help others learn what I have learned for themselves.

 

One last point about failure – true self is not afraid to fail.  True self knows that it cannot “fail.”  When true self falls short of our objectives it views this as progress.  True self knows that by falling short of the objective we will learn something that we can use to get closer to the objective on the next attempt.  True self views as learning what false self views as failure.

 

Summary

Here is the summary of today’s tips:

 

  1. Take a chill pill – The first step to getting ourselves into the present is to calm down
  2. Observe yourself – Once we have relaxed we can start to observe ourselves, most especially our thoughts
  3. Ignore the chatter – As we start to learn the skill of observation the chatter will return.  We will gradually learn to ignore this chatter.
  4. Do not be afraid to fail – Learning this skill is like learning to ride a bicycle.  We will fail, but we will also learn from those failures.

 

That is all for today.  Tomorrow we will have a few more tips that will help you stay in the moment.

 

Until tomorrow –

 

Es kava turen hai

We work towards an identical goal.

 

 

Discuss & Comment

We do not want this blog to be a fountain of words from one view point.  We welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment when the mood strikes you.

 

WordPress forces all comments to be moderated.  We usually check for comments at least twice a day.  So do not be surprised if it takes a few hours for you to see your comment.

 

Talk to us!  Post a comment or a question!

 

Subscribe

 

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Email

You can email us directly at:  noahnow@yahoo.com

 

Copyright

© Copyright 2008 by KanDu Associates, LLC 

 

The content of this blog is copyrighted by KanDu Associates.  All rights are reserved by the owner.  For reprint information please email:

 

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Learning to Be In the Moment

August 26, 2008

In the last few days one of our readers asked me to talk a bit more about being in the moment.  They wanted some suggestions about how to be in the moment.  So here is that explanation.  Let’s go!

 

True self is always in the moment

In the last few weeks we have discussed at length the ideas of true self and false self.  The link to being in the moment is whether or not we are acting from true self or accepting the unhappiness of false self.

 

When we are operating from true self we are in the moment.  You might ask “how will I know when that happens?”  Here are a few ways to recognize that you are in the moment.

 

The most important way to recognize that you are in the moment is that you are absolutely peaceful and calm.  You are so calm that you do not really care what happens.  Deep inside you know that whatever happens is just fine because you know that you can handle it.  You know that the choices you make are the correct choices and that all you need to do is take the appropriate steps and you will accomplish anything you choose to do.

 

Another way to recognize when you are in the moment is that you do not notice the passage of time.  Whatever you are doing, you have become so involved that you do not realize that several hours have passed.

 

I heard a good example of this recently.  Leonard Bernstein, the conductor and composer, was recounting a time when he was conducting a symphonic performance.  He said that he stepped on the podium and began conducting.  The next thing he remembered was the applause at the end of the event.  He had been in the moment so deeply that several hours had passed without him realizing that passage.

 

Have you ever noticed yourself watching your thoughts or actions?  Whether you realized it or not you were being the “observer”.  There are many spiritual and religious practices that discuss the idea of observation as a way to self mastery.

 

For me, observation is the key to really learning how to be in the moment.  We will discuss observation at greater length tomorrow.  For now just note that whenever you step outside of yourself for the shortest instant and see yourself from a different perspective you are in the moment.  When you catch that glimpse congratulate yourself for that achievement and begin to recognize the feeling, and then repeat this as often as possible.

 

False self is never in the moment

By definition, false self can never be in the moment.  That is why it is false self.  False self is the place where we experience all the things that we do not want to be.  Let’s take a look at a few characteristics of false self and why that is not being in the moment.

 

First of all, whenever we are not happy we are not in the moment.  False self has a myriad of excuses that it decides are reasons for not being happy.  It does not have the possessions that it wants so it is unhappy.  It was awakened in the middle of the night so it is upset that it did not get enough sleep.  And here is the big one.  Someone burned its toast this morning so it must be upset all day about that insult.

 

Why are these things not being in the moment?  Let’s take a closer look at a few of these examples.  See if you can spot the pattern.

 

When false self does not think that it has the possessions that it should have it is actually envisioning another time.  In that envisioned time period false self has the big house, the expensive car, the beautiful clothes that it thinks it should have now.  False self does not have those possessions at this moment and it senses a disconnect.  It also senses the possibility that it might never get those possessions.  False self becomes unhappy until it either finds something new about which to feel unhappy or we get back in the moment.

 

If false self is awakened and is upset because it did not get enough sleep it is actually envisioning a time when it should get the sleep it “needs.”  It is convinced that it needs eight hours of undisturbed sleep.  When it is disturbed it compares this vision of the current situation with the idealized time.  It wants to be in the idealized time and gets upset because the current time does not match it.

 

Once again false self decides that it needs to be upset.  That upset can last for a few minutes, hours, or days.  The upset will last until it finds something it views as more important to get upset with or true self takes over and we get back in the moment.

 

Finally, let’s look at what happens when someone burns the toast that false self had planned to eat for breakfast.  This egregious affront to false self causes it to think back on all the previous meals it enjoyed when the toast was prepared properly.  Once again, the envisioned time frame does not match the current experience.

 

For the rest of the day false self takes this perceived injury out on everyone it meets.  It yells at its fellow commuters.  It is sullen with its co-workers.  When it gets home it yells at the children.  It was unhappy all day because of some burned toast.

 

Did you see the pattern here?  It was the false self putting itself in another time period and comparing it to the current experience.  That is the definition of not being in the moment.  The idealized time period will never match the current experience, yet false self never ceases attempting to make it match.

 

When our concentration is not on the current experience, by definition we are not in the moment.  True self concentrates completely on the current experience and endeavors to understand that situation.  True self does not care about a future or past time period.  True self knows that when we concentrate completely on what is going on NOW everything else will take care of itself.

 

Eckhart Tolle has done some excellent work with teaching people to be in the moment.  That work might help you as it has helped me.  Please check our resource page for more information.

 

That is all for today.  Tomorrow we will look at a few tips for learning to be in the moment.

 

Until tomorrow –

 

Es kava turen hai

We work towards an identical goal.

 

 

Discuss & Comment

We do not want this blog to be a fountain of words from one view point.  We welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment when the mood strikes you.

 

WordPress forces all comments to be moderated.  We usually check for comments at least twice a day.  So do not be surprised if it takes a few hours for you to see your comment.

 

Talk to us!  Post a comment or a question!

 

Subscribe

 

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This email list is maintained by Feedburner, a subsidiary of Google.  I hate to receive spam and advertisements in my email.  I will never sell your email address for such purposes.

 

Email

You can email us directly at:  noahnow@yahoo.com

 

Copyright

© Copyright 2008 by KanDu Associates, LLC 

 

The content of this blog is copyrighted by KanDu Associates.  All rights are reserved by the owner.  For reprint information please email:

 

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Examining a Grudge

August 25, 2008

Welcome Back

Welcome back!  I hope everyone had a great weekend.  The weather in this part of the northeastern US remained great.  I wish the best to all those who have experienced hardships from Tropical Storm Fay.  I hope to take a little time later this week to explain a perspective of what was going on there.  That storm appeared to be an indication that the planetary rebalancing is getting closer.

 

Also this week we will take a closer look at how we can learn to stay in the moment.  I received an inquiry from a reader who asked if we could go into further depth about how to stay in the moment.  We will take a bit of time this week to do just that.

 

Today we will take a look at an example of how the false self holds a grudge.  The lesson to take from this is how unhappy this can make us for many years.

 

Are you ready to look at how silly a grudge can be?  Let’s go!

 

An Old Grudge

Many people know that I am a cineaste, a person who is a fan of movies.  My preference is classic movies from all over the world.  Pursuing this interest allows me to watch the false self in action from many perspectives.  Sometimes it is the way the plot is written and the characters act out their parts.  When researching the history of the movies one encounters many stories where actors lived their real lives deeply enmeshed in their false self illusions and fears.

 

This weekend I was watching an interview with a very famous director.  The interview was recorded several years ago when the director was over eighty years old.  The director has since passed.

 

During the interview the discussion turned to an incident many years ago when the director had punched a critic.  When asked about the incident the director readily admitted to having attacked the critic.

 

Evidently the reason the director physically attacked the critic was that the critic had written reviews of the director’s work that the director did not like.  The director said that he thought that by punching the critic he would intimidate the critic so that the critic would no longer write about him.

 

The part of the interview that I found extremely sad was that the director said “I hated that man then, and I hate him now.  Even though he is now dead I will always hate him.”

 

Carrying Great Pain

What I found so sad about this interview was that this world acclaimed man had chosen to bring himself so much pain.  This deep seated hate of the critic had caused him to act in a very painful manner and attack the man.  Then he chose to cause continuing pain by nurturing a deep and hateful grudge for the critic.

 

How many of us carry similar pain?  False self decided that some incident in the past was so hurtful that we were going to punish the one(s) who caused the hurt by hating them for the rest of our lives.

 

I have an acquaintance that has carried the same type of hurt for over thirty five years.  He was in combat in the Viet Nam war and has yet to release his hate of the ones he fought.  Just like the director, the object of his hate is dead, yet he continues to hurt himself by continuing to hate.

 

Why Does False Self Hate?

There are many reasons that false self hates, but they all come down to either perceiving that it has been hurt or anticipating that it might be hurt.  In the case of our director, his false self perceived that it had been hurt.  Let’s step through this based on what we have learned in the last few weeks.

 

This all starts with the director’s false self identification with his work.  As we have seen, this identification causes false self to think that the film is part of itself.  Now that the film is part of itself any remark (true or not) that false self chooses not to like will be viewed as an attack on false self.  An attack on the film is the same as an attack on false self.

 

In order to “defend” itself false self determined that the best course of action would be to attack the critic.  The stated reason was to keep the critic from writing about the director’s work.  This means that the false self attacked the critic so that the critic would not continue to hurt the false self by writing about the director’s work.  In other words, the critic could not hurt the false self if he no longer wrote about the director.

 

In this case the director first perceived an attack on false self through the unflattering writings of the critic.  Hurt number one for the false self.  The false self attacked the critic to keep him from hurting false self again.  Hurt number two for the false self.  This attack hurt false self much more than it hurt the critic.

 

In order to “prove” that false self was “right” when it attacked the critic the false self then chose to hate the critic.  The false self “logic” here was that if we could always view the critic with hate then we would not have to look at the possibility that we might have been wrong to attack the critic.

 

This became hurt number three for the false self. And it became the hurt that it nurtured for the rest of its life.  It is so sad to see people hurt themselves in this manner.  When we really understand how the false self is controlling our lives through fears and illusions we wonder why people choose to hurt themselves so deeply.  At least I wonder about that.

 

That’s all for today.  I am very interested in hearing your insights regarding the example we looked at today.  A discussion about this type of situation is always thought provoking for everyone involved.  Please share your thoughts with our other readers.

 

Until tomorrow –

 

Es kava turen hai

We work towards an identical goal.

 

 

Discuss & Comment

We do not want this blog to be a fountain of words from one view point.  We welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment when the mood strikes you.

 

WordPress forces all comments to be moderated.  We usually check for comments at least twice a day.  So do not be surprised if it takes a few hours for you to see your comment.

 

Talk to us!  Post a comment or a question!

 

Subscribe

 

Don’t miss any updates.  Get daily posts by email.  Subscribe to this blog by clicking here: SUBSCRIBE

 

This email list is maintained by Feedburner, a subsidiary of Google.  I hate to receive spam and advertisements in my email.  I will never sell your email address for such purposes.

 

Email

You can email us directly at:  noahnow@yahoo.com

 

Copyright

© Copyright 2008 by KanDu Associates, LLC 

 

The content of this blog is copyrighted by KanDu Associates.  All rights are reserved by the owner.  For reprint information please email:

 

noahnow@yahoo.com


Summarizing the False Self

August 22, 2008

Thankful Friday

As always, we will take a moment and thank those around us for their work and assistance.  Our first thank you goes out to the imsezha who have provided such wonderful weather for the last two weeks.  The weather this month in this area of the northeast US has been close to perfect.  (If you want to know who the imsezha are post a comment asking the question.)

 

Our second thanks goes to our readers.  Thank you for taking the time to read this site on a regular basis.  Our final thanks goes to WordPress and FeedBurner for providing the free tools that make this site possible.  Thanks!

 

What is the false self?

For the past few weeks we have taken a very detailed look at the concepts of true self and false self.  Today we are going to summarize the major characteristic of the false self and how it functions.  Our hope is that the more we recognize false self the more we will recognize the pain that comes from living in the false self identity.

 

We have learned that false self begins to be created as soon as we are born.  It knows it is supposed to be trained by true self.  True self is our nonphysical self that is the repository for everything we have ever learned.  At the beginning of each lifetime it is supposed to take charge and train false self to be the eyes and ears for true self during the lifetime.  True self is supposed to make all the decisions, not false self.

 

On this planet we do not do this with our infants.  The parents do not understand what true self is, so they allow the false self to take charge.  False self knows that it is not supposed to be in charge and begins to form its identity based on this fear of being alone and being in charge.

 

False Self Forms Attachments

False self in an infant is supposed to look to true self for guidance and its identity.  Because we do not train our infants to listen to true self our infants begin to take their false self identity from the physical objects around them.

 

The initial attachments that an infant forms are to their body and to those people around it.  Gradually the infant begins to form attachments to their thoughts and ideas.

 

By the time the child is about seven years old these initial attachments are set strongly enough that they will govern the child’s behavior for the rest of their life – or until they learn to retrain the false self.  There are times when true self steps in and says that we can rid ourselves of an attachment or a fear, and we do so.  However these times are relatively few and far between.

 

A Tangled Web of Fears and Attachments

As we have just seen, false self begins to form its identity from the fear that it knows that it is not supposed to be in charge of the lifetime.  It has not understood that true self is supposed to make the decisions.  It has also not been trained to listen to true self for guidance.  It becomes very fearful when it comes to the conclusion that it will have to operate alone for the lifetime.

 

In order to quell that base fear false self begins to create an identity based on attachments to the things around it.  As the child gets older these attachments become the source of the false self identity.

 

The false self identity is now made of such attachments as its clothing, its automobile, its body, its nationality, its religion, and many more.  Because the false self has yet to understand that true self is always available it believes that it is actually all these attachments.

 

The additional fears come from the perceived questioning or injuring of any of the attachments.  False self identifies with its automobile.  If someone scratches that automobile, then false self perceives that it has been scratched.  False self identifies with its religious beliefs.  If someone appears to question those religious beliefs, false self views this as its identity being questioned.

 

Frequently when the false self identity is injured or questioned false self thinks it has to defend or attack in order to protect that identity.  If someone questions its political views, false self thinks it has to lash out at that someone to defend its identity.  If false self thinks someone is going to take its possessions, it attacks in order to protect those possessions and therefore its identity.

 

The Difficulty of Retraining False Self

Ok – so we are starting to see where our unhappiness comes from.  Our false self is attached to all kinds of objects, people, and thoughts that it thinks create its identity.  We spend most of our lives acting out the fears that false self experiences because it is protecting its false self identity.  We know we are unhappy.  Why can’t we learn to become happy?

 

The reason why it takes awhile to learn to be happy is that false self is resisting us at every turn.  As we start to listen to and understand our true self we also start to question the false self identity.  We start to see the fears and attachments for what they are – our source of unhappiness.

 

Initially false self does not know whether or not it can trust true self.  False self has been running things for many years and has become quite afraid of anyone or anything questioning its fears and attachments.  It has spent the entire lifetime defending those fears and attachments.  It does not like true self questioning its identity.

 

We retrain false self by continuously facing its fears and attachments.  We learn to listen to true self and the quiet little voice that will not submit to those fears and attachments.  That quiet little voice eventually convinces false self that true self understands what is going on and can be trusted.

 

Although we can have great insights and make large advancements in a single step, the typical path is one of small but frequent steps.  We see a small fear and conquer it.  We see a small attachment and let it go.  We make the small steps as we see them, but do not wait for the big steps.  Those will happen, but they will happen in their own time when we least expect them.  The gradual daily progress is what will bring us closer to our true happiness.

 

That is all for today.  I hope everyone has a great weekend!

 

Until Monday –

 

Es kava turen hai

We work towards an identical goal.

 

 

Discuss & Comment

We do not want this blog to be a fountain of words from one view point.  We welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment when the mood strikes you.

 

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Email

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Copyright

© Copyright 2008 by KanDu Associates, LLC 

 

The content of this blog is copyrighted by KanDu Associates.  All rights are reserved by the owner.  For reprint information please email:

 

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How True Self Uses Possessions

August 19, 2008

How True Self Uses Possessions

 

Recap

Yesterday we looked at how false self attaches itself to possessions.  We heard about the way false self feels hurt when one of our possessions is damaged.  We also started to get a feeling for the idea that we should view possessions as tools that we use while we are learning and growing.

 

Today we will take a closer look at how true self uses possessions.  Are you ready?  Let’s go!

 

True Self for Our Learning

We have seen how false self wants to attach to many things, especially possessions.  True self is happy and self contained.  When we are being our true self we realize that objects and possessions are temporary.  They come into our lives when we need them and we should not get upset when they leave our lives.

 

True self views all objects as tools which it needs to do its job.  What is that job?  As we have stated many times on this site – we exist to learn and grow and share that learning and growth with each other.  So the job of our true self is to continue to learn and grow.

 

True self evaluates all objects and possessions in the light of what it needs to learn and grow.  When an object is no longer needed for our learning true self does not care if it leaves our life – true self just allows that object to leave.  We will not hang on to the object because of attachment.  We will maintain possession only if we anticipate needing that object.

 

True self does not care if an unneeded object leaves our possession.  True self views this as one less thing we have to look after.  True self also knows that if an object leaves our possession and we need it again – then we will acquire it again.

 

At first this might seem like a lot of work.  First we acquire something and then we let it go.  Then we acquire it again.  However, once the object has ceased to be useful, how can we know if we are going to ever need it again?  I view that the work required to maintain the object “just in case” is usually far more work than letting it go and then getting it back again.  If we let it go and then get it back we might get a better one back or one that is more suited for the task.

 

Also, the fewer possessions we have the more simple our life becomes.  The more simple our life becomes the more time we have to concentrate on our real job of learning and sharing that learning.

 

True Self and Status Symbols

Status symbols are just another way to describe attachments.  A status symbol is supposed to convey a certain image about the person who possesses the status symbol.  False self is concerned about identity so it seeks status symbols and other methods of conspicuous consumption.  We will discuss false self and identity later this week.  For now, let’s just accept that anytime we seek to purchase a status symbol we are acting from false self.

 

True self can purchase a status symbol and not do so from an attachment.  Let’s take a look at the example of buying a watch.  True self realizes that we need a watch in order to keep track of time.  It is important that when we make a commitment to be somewhere on time that we honor that commitment.

 

So we need a watch – which one should we buy?  If we look at simple functionality an inexpensive watch could be all that we need.  However, an inexpensive watch may not be durable enough.  True self recognizes that we will need to keep track of time for the rest of our lifetime.  Now we consider a more expensive and more durable watch.

 

Next, true self looks at the social situations that it will be in while wearing the watch.  If we will be in very formal situations then we will need a watch that is appropriate for those situations.  That would mean we now need a durable and handsomely decorated watch.

 

True self is also able to afford an upscale watch without financial hardship.  We have now worked ourselves into the territory of some watches that many people would consider as status symbols.  However, true self is viewing this in a pragmatic manner.  We need a watch.  The correct watch for our needs is considered a status symbol.  True self does not care about status symbols – it only cares about acquiring the correct watch.  If the correct watch had been a $10 throw away watch, that is what true self would have acquired, even if we could have afforded a $100 watch.

 

It is all about acquiring the correct tool for the job.  That is all true self cares about.  It has much more important things to be doing than caring about a bunch of attachments to physical objects.

 

We Do Not Have to Renounce Possessions

Many spiritual and religious disciplines teach that we should renounce or severely limit our physical possessions.  I do not see it that way.

 

My viewpoint is that we need to renounce our attachments to physical possessions and material things.  There is a big difference between renouncing having the objects and renouncing the attachments to the objects.

 

When we renounce possessing physical objects we do not address the underlying attachments.  We may renounce possessions except for just those few things we perceive that we need to live our life.  Two things happen because of this.

 

First, we may pass up some very important learning opportunities because we have renounced possessions.  If those learning opportunities require us to acquire some possessions then we will not be able to learn those lessons.

 

Second, we can still become very attached to the few objects remaining in our life.  Renouncing possessions has not worked because we still have false self attachments.

 

To me, the better approach is to learn to approach possessions and physical objects as true self.  We renounce our attachments, but recognize the importance that possessions and objects can have on the lessons we choose to learn.

 

Because we are not attached to the objects we do not care as the objects enter and leave our lives.  We are concentrating on our learning and the appropriate objects are always there.  Part of that learning is to know when and how to acquire the appropriate objects.

 

Well, that is all for today.  We will see you again tomorrow when we will start to take a look at some of the facets of false self identity.

 

Until tomorrow –

 

Es kava turen hai

We work towards an identical goal.

 

 

Discuss & Comment

We do not want this blog to be a fountain of words from one view point.  We welcome comments and questions.  Please feel free to ask a question or make a comment when the mood strikes you.

 

WordPress forces all comments to be moderated.  We usually check for comments at least twice a day.  So do not be surprised if it takes a few hours for you to see your comment.

 

Talk to us!  Post a comment or a question!

 

Subscribe

 

Don’t miss any updates.  Get daily posts by email.  Subscribe to this blog by clicking here: SUBSCRIBE

 

This email list is maintained by Feedburner, a subsidiary of Google.  I hate to receive spam and advertisements in my email.  I will never sell your email address for such purposes.

 

Email

You can email us directly at:  noahnow@yahoo.com

 

Copyright

© Copyright 2008 by KanDu Associates, LLC 

 

The content of this blog is copyrighted by KanDu Associates.  All rights are reserved by the owner.  For reprint information please email:

 

noahnow@yahoo.com