purity and the unstained mind
Dec 13, 1993 12:39 PM
In approaching self-development, including the practice of meditation,
there is a misconception, a maya that leads us astray. There is an
incorrect understanding of the nature of power, of the nature of
perfection or completion that leads us to take the wrong approach.
Reaching perfection is never a matter of power. We mislead ourselves
when we say: "If only I tried *harder*, I'd achieve my goal!" It is
not a matter of strength, of the quantity of energy applied. We do not
simply try harder and harder at our meditation, until one day we've
tried hard enough and we achieve our results.
No matter how loudly we knock on the door to the Mysteries, there will
be no answer. Until we give the correct knock, we stand before a barrier
that we cannot penetrate, regardless of the force applied.
We are are *trying*, rather than *doing*, if there is a sense of
pushing, of strain, then we are not taking the correct approach. To
open a door we turn the handle, we do not kick it in. We turn the right
key in the lock, and don't force one that does not fit until it may
break. We give the right password (really the right *word* as a
content of meditation), and we are granted admission.
Another maya, another misperception of the nature of the spiritual,
is regarding purity. We may think that our barrier to progress is our
lack of personal purity in our lives and actions. We may believe that
if only we were pure enough that we would one day reach the point of
enlightenment and perfection.
This idea of purity is another avoidance of the true nature of the
spiritual. It is really not a *more* of this or that, of anything
personal, including *more* in the sense of percentages.
We dwell in the spiritual, bathe in it, clothe our daily life in it,
enwrap, envelope, and surround the activities of our lives in it.
And if we make a mistake, fall down, and do something personal, petty,
selfish, ignoble, we forget it, let it go, move on, and continue to
dwell in the highest.
It is an evil practice to give in to something of the lower nature,
and then afterwards to turn our back on the spiritual for a time. The
failure, the transgression cannot be helped at times, but the turning
of our backs upon our source is unforgivable.
We may want to avoid a feeling of shame or feeling that we are
undeserving of the spiritual, and want to avoid any feeling of regret
for a time. But we should not feel regret! We should let go of our
mistake, and move on.
We do not have to hide from the spiritual for a time, like a naughty
child avoiding immediate punishment from his parents! We should *come
home* immediately, and forgive ourselves so that we can move on. When
we slip and fall, when we do a wrong, we forgive ourselves and
sincerely embrace the higher again.
Yet another misunderstanding regards the necessity to remain 100
percent pure. The sense of *enough* applies to a percentage, and we
may tell ourselves that we must never, ever make a mistake.
This attitude leads us to consider abandoning the effort when a single
mistake is made, because the live we are trying to live is too hard,
too exacting. We are forced to make the choice between living a hard,
inflexible life, or not bother trying at all to be a better person.
Because we've become tainted, because we've lost our 100 percent
purity in some way, we may feel that we've failed and are useless as
people and our lives have been ruined.
This is like the mistaken idea of a virgin, the idea that says that
once we've had the experience we are forever changed. But we can become
*virgin* again, we can attain the same state of innocence of
consciousness that is unstained by our mistakes. Any feeling of being
different, changed, defiled, is one that we allow ourselves to dwell
in. We use that feeling as a maya, a self-deception, an excuse, to
avoid continuing to try to live the higher life.
There is no real excuse to not return to the state of spiritual purity
and dwell in it, no matter what the mistake or transgression. We can
always get up again, when knocked down by life, and return home, to
We should alawys dwell in the highest, and when we fall away, for a
moment, we should always feel welcome back and want to return. We
should feel glad to come back home, as soon as we recognize that we've
Our spiritual nature is uncorrupted by our personal failures, and is
the source of our healing of any injory or sickness of soul that we
may externally experience.
This spiritual nature, the impersonal seat of consciousness within,
is our heart, the mystery of our being--not heart in the sense of a
feeling nature, but rather heart as being our essential self. This is
the home that we long to return to. It is our divine parent and our
true nature. And we can live in it and one day make it our seat of
consciousness, even as we continue in the outer world to function as
The holy, the sacred, the heart of life is not achieved by lower means,
of whatever intensity. It is achieved by *something different*, not by
We could be deep in devotion, with very intense feelings, and want
harder and harder our objective, perhaps union with a spiritual beloved.
But at the end, we are depleted and may feel cleansed but have run down
and depleted our energy. We have undergone an emotional workout, one
of a spiritual nature, and our personal and psychological health may
have been improved, but we are not closer to the true spiritual because
of it. We are no more closer to the spiritual than if we had been
partcicing hatha yoga. We have exercised our personal nature in a
particular way, but not directly engaged the higher nature.
The same is true of intense concentration, where there is a sense of
strain, where we have, perhaps, grit our teeth and sit with clenched
fists and a fierce resolve. We really want our objective! But we cannot
push through to the higher, because the higher is not an extrapolation
or magnification of the personal. We may strengthen our personal
faculties, but have not penetrated deeper.
Again, we may bury ourselves 100 percent of the time in some activity.
It may even be for the good of the world, a selfless thing. But if it
is an escape from the numerous responsiblities of our life, we have gone
astray. For the spiritual *enhances* our lives, it enriches us, it
does lead us to neglect our ties with others and our personal
responsibilities in the world.
We must look to the right part of ourselves in our meditation, and in
our lives. It is not a workout, not an exhausting strain, that we
undergo, but a quite mind and heart, like a cool, placid mountain lake,
where we are gentle, reverend, respectively in the presence of something
We strive for the middle way, for balance, poise, a lightness to life
that is not heavy, strained, somber, gloomy. We develope the qualities
of consciousness that lead us to be light, cheerful, bright, full of
love and hope. We apply not a titanic power, to achieve our goals,
sweeping away all obstacles, but rather apply an unrelenting
determination, a persistence that never gives up.
We train ourselves, in our meditation and in our daily lives, to dwell
in the beauty, the love, the wisdom within! It is something that we
dearly want, yet it is so easy to attain. Let us *be it*, not by force
of will, by intensity of aspiration, by any attempt at more or better
at anything, but to *be it* by already being it. Let us recognize it
in ourselves, it is there, it is part of our consciousness, but it is
up to us to being self-consciousness to it, to become aware of it and
its functionings. Let us take the treasure that we already have in our
hand, and find true peace!
Eldon Tucker (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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