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 Enlightenment Milestones
 My heritage and path
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parvati9

USA
587 Posts

Posted - Feb 05 2018 :  12:35:06 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Message
My father came from a long line of English Christian pastors. My mother came from a lineage of devout Hungarian Christians. But Dad never talked about religion and Mom hated Christianity. My mother and her Hungarian sister trained me to be wise and open minded and be suspicious of Christianity.

Nevertheless, I've got very strong tendency to follow Christianity from both sides of my family. And when I try to pursue an Eastern approach, can almost feel my ancestors on both sides frowning and trying to discourage me.

The result is that I don't fit in anywhere. I've been pursuing both Eastern religion and Western Christianity, hoping to find some middle ground.

Lately I've given up on enlightenment as well as Christianity. Maybe I've finally found a way to integrate them, maybe not... Now there is no path, no road, no journey .. but only an infinite point. The present moment. I read Krishnamurti who makes a lot of sense to me. Like my mother, he was not very fond of religion in general. Like Eckhart Tolle, he emphasizes presence. He says to be spiritually free, you must go beyond the efforting usually employed in pursuing it... Because all efforting comes from the past, and from thought, which is the past.

I only want to be with what I am.

How hard is that? Well it's apparently not as easy as it may seem. When the fuel has run out, when there is no longer interest in moving in any given direction, ostensibly toward enlightenment ... what is one to do? One can try to be mindful, but without actually trying to do it. Is that a zen koan? According to Krishnamurti - watch the mind like a hawk.

Yeah yeah okay. I don't like watching my mind like a hawk. It's not an uplifting enterprise. Nevertheless it just somehow gets done. I don't try to do it. Krishnamurti is my new guru. So I try to follow his suggestions without really trying.. or trying too much. Discipline. Discipline the self into a pattern which then becomes so natural it is effortless. Except there IS no pattern. The pattern itself must be discarded.

I'm still doing breath meditation every day, but not very regularly. Not very consistently. Breath meditation is the ONLY spiritual practice I can do without overload. I can't help it. Sometimes my emotions take me into a whirlwind. My only hope for righting this little ship of consciousness is to focus on my breath. Sometimes that takes 5 hours. Other days are better, smoother sailing, and it only takes 10 minutes.

This may sound like the rantings of someone who has not exactly found their spiritual heritage. Appearance to the contrary, it feels almost heavenly, like I've found myself, returned home. So when the Christians tell me I'm a lost soul, and my ancestors frown, I just give them an eyeroll and halfsmile.

love
parvati

lalow33

USA
966 Posts

Posted - Feb 05 2018 :  2:32:19 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
OMG! I was just talking about this stuff with my sister. I like the judgemental Christian part of me, even though I don't know the Bible very well. It's hypocritical, but I'm fine with that.
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Dogboy

USA
1795 Posts

Posted - Feb 05 2018 :  4:32:33 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
"So when the Christians tell me I'm a lost soul, and my ancestors frown, I just give them an eyeroll and half smile."

The best response to stay out of the muck. The eye roll is a glance to the heavens in a way and the smiling is from a place of knowing..
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Blanche

USA
671 Posts

Posted - Feb 06 2018 :  06:48:36 AM  Show Profile  Visit Blanche's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi Parvati,

Thank you for sharing. It seems that writing and teaching Ayurveda are your other spiritual practices these days.

I can relate to your Christian upbringing, but I found the most interesting part of Christianity not in rituals or stories, but in prayer and silence. People had different opinions of my interest in Asian spirituality and yoga - they were noted, and had no impact, as they knew even less than I did. I thought that enlightenment was possible, but I did not consider it a possibility for me. The commitment to meditation came out of curiosity, not discipline. There was always a sense that practice would answer any questions - I only had to continue to meditate. How wonderfully different we all are!

Feeling blessed and blissed out to read the lessons here

Edited by - Blanche on Feb 06 2018 06:49:23 AM
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parvati9

USA
587 Posts

Posted - Feb 06 2018 :  09:36:27 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks Lalow, Dogboy.
Blanche ... My Christian heritage fights me on everything. I know what my life purpose is: to help people maximize their potential. To that end, Astrology is my profession. Christians won't let me teach it. Vedic astrology is closely related to Ayurveda. Thanks for the comment.

love
parvati
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Blanche

USA
671 Posts

Posted - Feb 06 2018 :  9:19:24 PM  Show Profile  Visit Blanche's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi Parvati,

It seems like a difficult situation. But then, they do try their best that they know, and this is what they know. Is it any way to just not fight them? I am ok to let others win arguments, if they cannot engage in a dialog. There is really no point to argue with them - they only become more resistant. Reading Dalai Lama's "Stages of Meditation" this weekend, I found a story about Buddha who gave this amazing talk, where each of the listeners got exactly what they needed. "How wonderful!" I thought. "But isn't it always the case? How many times we barely mention something, and know that our companion understands exactly what we mean? And other times we say things, and we repeat them, and our audience absolutely misses the point." We could only offer plentifully, and let everyone interested come and enjoy it.

Thank you for sharing your gifts - you make a difference! Blanche
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parvati9

USA
587 Posts

Posted - Feb 07 2018 :  10:53:27 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Blanche
Thank you for the words of wisdom ... I also need to be okay with letting others win arguments

love
parvati

Edited by - parvati9 on Feb 07 2018 9:42:25 PM
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Blanche

USA
671 Posts

Posted - Feb 08 2018 :  06:54:13 AM  Show Profile  Visit Blanche's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Parvati,

Yes, "All the directions are exhausted, there's nowhere to go." - then we really get somewhere.

The key to equanimity is emptying out of desires - as you realized.

Enjoying your writing,
love,
Blanche
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Chard

250 Posts

Posted - Feb 08 2018 :  9:15:08 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Parvati, thank you so much for sharing... I can identify with your post. You are certainly not a lost soul- it seems like you've integrated Christianity and Enlightenment etc.You are on the path and thank you for all of your contributions to the forum
C
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Radharani

USA
843 Posts

Posted - Feb 10 2018 :  10:02:41 PM  Show Profile  Visit Radharani's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Dear Parvati,
Always enjoy your posts!

I can relate to some of what you shared. As a child, I was forced to attend fundie evangelical Christian schools, with mandatory church services, that totally turned me off to God. I actually became an atheist at age 12. I began practicing hatha yoga and meditation at age 13 and then explored Eastern religions to fill the spiritual void. It was Hinduism, specifically my Vaishnava bhakti (ISKCON) friends in college, that gave me a fresh new perspective on God and Christianity.

As you know, there are many different kinds of "Christians"! When I rediscovered Jesus in my late 20s I attended a church that at first seemed really cool because they had rock music and guys with long hair and tattoos. But I soon learned they weren't as "mellow" as their appearance suggested. They got quite upset upon learning that I was a Metaphysical Consultant and read Tarot cards! They whispered behind my back and never accepted me as one of them.

I then discovered the Episcopal Church and it was a great fit - beautiful ritual, sacraments, music, embrace of mysticism, open-minded nonjudgmental people - "all the pageantry, none of the guilt." I became a Third-Order Sister and found that my tantra and kriya yoga practice meshed perfectly with this form of Christian mysticism.

I regard yoga not as "Eastern," but a neutral spiritual technology, "whole body prayer" that can be employed within the context of any religion. So for me it's not "either/or" despite what I was told by fundie Christians (who regard yoga as satanic!). Rather, the yoga practice and my Christianity are quite complementary. FWIW you don't seem "lost" to me, LOL. and you are not alone.

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