April 21, 2019

The Meaning of Easter

If you grew up in the Christian church, you may have observed that churches have some interesting ideas about why Jesus Christ came and what his purpose was. I would like to defer to Jesus’ own teaching regarding his purpose for coming, which can also help to explain the context for Easter as well as the various Christian holidays of the year.

Jesus said that he came that we might have life and have it more abundantly. This would mean that we don't have life and that Jesus is coming to bring us life. Hopefully, then, in some way we will be resurrected from the state of death to the state of life. Jesus’ own explanation as to why he came is an amazing metaphor for Easter. Basically, Jesus is saying that we are like dead people, zombies. Even though we raise families, go to work and feed ourselves, we are not really alive without the spirit. Jesus represents the spirit, and his reason for coming is to bring us to life and awaken us: his verbal teachings, sacrifice on Good Friday, metaphysical actions, and all the things he did were to that end.

Unfortunately, the churches haven't done their job and taught in the way that Jesus himself instructed. Instead of reflecting his exact meaning and points, they are reemphasizing nonessential issues. When we begin to understand his teachings correctly, we will be able to enter into Christ's spirit and receive his blessings. His teachings, whether physical rupa teachings, such as his oral transmission, or spiritual blessings of the Holy Spirit, are to bring us to life.

In a proper church we should study the scriptures, learn Jesus’ verbal statements and try to understand them. Some are secondary teachings on how to be a good person. Others are esoteric teachings of the mystical reality of the universe and our relationship with God. Some are cloaked in metaphor or parable, but again, those teachings are to awaken us to this new life and revive us out of this zombie-like death state that we are in. These are Jesus' own words.

Good Friday—the death of Jesus, the crucifixion of Christ—is the sacrifice of the rupa or form. Our most prized possession is our body, and he was willing to offer that and show the ultimate unimportance of that body. Now we come to what may be a touchy subject, but provocativeness can be good. What does Easter represent? It doesn't really represent the resurrection of that body. It represents that despite the crucifixion of the physical Jewish carpenter man that occurred on Good Friday, spiritually Christ lives on and that event didn't really kill him. There was no death in an ultimate sense.

Jesus taught in many different ways. He gave verbal teachings, which we commemorate on Exposition Day. Good Friday is a physical rupa teaching of Christ, where he gave his own body and it's gone. It's emptiness now, but that emptiness is inseparable from the fact of eternal spirit, and this is exemplified in Easter. The metaphysical teaching of Christ begins in full force on Easter. However, it's important to understand that Christ came back no longer limited to the ordinary body of the Jewish carpenter with a beard, but instead wielding a body as a metaphysical display.

The disciples have already been introduced to metaphysical realities through various healings and even the bringing back to life of Lazarus. Even though these acts have already been done, the disciples are still not able to fully comprehend metaphysical reality.

Even if the raising of Lazarus or miracles are performed, those in and of themselves are not necessarily the complete lesson. Usually teachings have to be repeated many times for people to understand. The disciples couldn't really penetrate the full meaning, even with Jesus standing right in front of them, because their samskaras, their thought forms of reality, were too stiff. How about us? Would we able to see Jesus if he were standing right in front of us?

Easter is the most famous of the metaphysical holidays, but remarkably, it's not the most important. Jesus shows how to express properly sunyata, emptiness and form, through his teaching of how to have life. He demonstrates it in rupa ways, through teaching orally and by dying on the cross, and then he teaches it in metaphysical ways by coming back to life in a new body, and through the Ascension and the Pentecost.

These Christian holidays are equally important and meaningful. The spirit of Christ is going to come into the disciples. It hasn't really touched them yet. Even though Jesus has risen, they continue to have obscurations. Jesus has not finished his teaching on Easter, and there are more incredible metaphysical teachings still awaiting. These special days are yet to occur.

May all beings be benefited and blessed, and may they have life and have it more abundantly.

April 17, 2019

Cutting Through Fallacies About God

The buddhas are consistent in teaching the ultimate characteristic-less-ness of God. If a person finds this difficult to accept, however, then they might see the universes and phenomena not only as his creation, but as his characteristics. A beginner in spirituality might interpret this to mean that only positive aspects of creation, such as heaven, are God's externalization—an advanced student sees something else altogether. However, the dharmakaya in and of itself, God, has no characteristics, which means there is no description for God, the ultimate truth of all phenomena.

Even the word we use spelled ‘G-o-d’ is but a mere label and again, not any sort of characteristic of the basis of all things. Lao Tzu said there is no word that can describe it, but to give it a name we call it ‘Tao.’ Alternatively, we could call it ‘buddha nature’ or ‘dharmakaya.’ This most important subject, Tao/God/ dharmakaya, transcends any special and elite qualities such as big, powerful, mighty or ‘the One,’ although these kinds of terms and styled, dynamic god-type characteristics have been taught for provisional purposes to benefit certain people.

When somebody comes into the lotus of a true esoteric wisdom school, if they request and may be able to respond, they are given the empowerment of the higher self, which is dharmakaya empowerment. Some people recognize the empowerment but don't practice it. Occasionally, there are a few who practice it and continue to recognize their nature. They realize in the momentary scraping away of obscuration that their own nature is characteristic-less-ness. The false teachings of TV celebrities, the media, politics and displacement religions generally encourage trying to acquire more powerful and pleasant characteristics. Authentic religions don’t advise trying to get rid of characteristics, but rather, to gain familiarity with ‘spirit,’ that which transcends characteristics.

If a person talks about mystic being too much, they tend to cheapen it. In the state of meditation or upon receiving empowerment we can realize our nature is amazing. We might see it as a luminous presence, beingness, love, great compassion or pure freedom. Someone might think, "Aha, those are characteristics. John, the disciple, said, 'God is love,' so God has characteristics." Let's put it this way: God is not any of the love that people normally consider to be love. The experience of God's love transcends, yet there is a similarity to, animal and human love, sex, attraction, lust, passion.

There is a wondrous, ultimate truth that transcends each ray. There are seven rays of will, love/wisdom, active intelligence, harmony through conflict, concrete science, idealism, and ceremonial order, respectively. Those are different types of orientations built into the system, and the nature of those various creativities is pure and comes from God. God didn't come with those things: all the things of the world arose out of God.

The tathagata is God. There are various honorific names for a buddha, but a buddha is also a tathagata. ‘Tathagata’ means that he transcends our understanding—he can come and go, yet he transcends coming and going, as Jesus did: at first Jesus just seemed like a regular guy. Then he started doing some miracles, but to some he just seemed like a regular guy doing miracles. Then he died and seemed like a regular guy. There were storms and earthquakes, and then he came back and no longer seemed like a regular guy. Then he left and came back yet again, and at that point he definitely didn't seem like a regular guy. At first we may not understand Christ as a tathagata, but by the time of Pentecost we realize that he in fact is the tathagata. He transcends being here and not being here. A buddha can be both God and man. As Jesus said, "I and the Father are one."

What is the best way to overcome fear of sunyata? Realize that it is not a blank emptiness at all, so what we are afraid of doesn't exist. We don't have to worry about form. Only by having faith in dharmakaya can we transcend believing in this world only. Nowadays people are taught a post-modern, inverted idea of the world and mistakenly believe that spirit comes out of form. On the contrary, every phenomenon emerges from Tao.

April 16, 2019

The First Thing to Understand

The first thing to understand in an advanced spiritual path is about mystic being: buddha nature. That is the purpose of the Higher Self empowerment. What you are being shown is your true nature, which is buried dormant underneath your fake non-nature. Since the beginning of Lovestream in 1992, we started right there and have never deviated. We called it ‘Higher Self.’ It is not the self that you conceptualize. The way that you think of yourself is just a temporary flitting through the universal display. That which seems real now will not exist in the future, but your ultimate nature will always be. Knowing your ultimate nature is how you find happiness in this world.

Where everything is free
It’s never you or me
It’s just FlowWorld:
The way that things are supposed to be.
If it’s your time, then you will see.

Making progress toward realizing your buddha nature requires having samaya, commitment to that ineffable buddha nature, God, dharmakaya. You start with the stimulation of it, and then from that point on you dedicate yourself and make a decision about it. If you walk away and let it go, that is because you didn't really get it. If you got it you would be back for more every day, over and over, throughout the day and night until Great Completion. The Higher Self empowerment is to help you stabilize in the recognition of God as your singular path.

The esoteric teaching of The Lotus of the Buddha, Christ and Tao is the actual masters awakening us. The real Lotus Organization isn't a church corporation; it is an organization that exists esoterically. From the outside it is perceived as some sort of church. "The Lotus" refers to the actual lotus of awakening. If you were to walk into a Christian church, it is possible there could be one person in there who is really in the lotus of the esoteric Christian church. The church isn't the building or the people in it: the church or lotus is the beings who are truly in connection.

How do you keep from conceptualizing your Higher Self? Consider that if you have been lost in samsara for eons, more lifetimes than you possibly could fathom, then you are probably very used to it, and if you have even the slightest realization it is easy to muck it up. Chances are you are going to mix it with the poison that is your regular samskaric thinking, your messy mind. Unfortunately, you can’t expect a fast food type of enlightenment where you can drive up, order and become enlightened. When you hear the teachings and explanations, then you can learn how to untrick yourself and break your bad habits. In the end, you can't really do it. It's impossible to become enlightened, but because your nature is magical, your natural way to be is enlightened.

The term ‘Higher Self’ could seem biased in that it might imply perhaps a better self or a super self. Interestingly, when you attain enlightenment you can create all sorts of amazing selves. If you want you can even create really crummy beings, too. You can create all sorts of things because you won't cling to them, so they won't really matter. You will remain enlightened in all those situations.

When one receives the Holy Spirit, there is really not a self who receives the Holy Spirit. It is simply an awakening experience, which in Christianity is called the ‘Holy Spirit,’ ‘receiving the Holy Spirit,’ or ‘being touched by the Holy Spirit.’ But there is no receiving, no touching, and no self. Of course, there are changes in chi and shifts in phenomena on the physical, etheric, astral and mental levels based on that awakening.

When people use the term ‘God’ they often misunderstand it and use it to signify something conceptual. Alternatively, they can start to recognize it correctly as the dharmakaya, the basis of all things, out of which everything arises and to which everything returns. One person is using the term and attaining enlightenment; another person is using the term and remaining confused in samsara grasping onto an idea of a bizarre super being. The same applies to any other name for God, including ‘Higher Self,’ ‘tathagata-garbha,’ ‘buddha nature,’ or ‘Tao.’ Shallow people think these designations refer to separate things.

No wonder atheists today are so skeptical when they listen to quasi-spiritual teachers, ministers, priests and popes deliver their claptrap. It's hard to blame them too much because a lot of what they hear from these supposed religious authorities is delusional. One needs to know actual God, Tao, dharmakaya, Higher Self, the buddha nature. That is the fount of life: the basis of all life, the basis of all things.

April 14, 2019

Sacrifice and Good Friday

Jesus Christ brought us the esoteric teaching, the straightforward truth about the universe and our purpose in it, and for that he was attacked and killed. The Diamond Sutra Chapter 16 contains a thread that runs through all initiates’ activities. When we start to realize the simple understanding of how things are, we are attacked by our own illusions and false thoughts; we are also attacked by beings from the outside. So we are told in The Diamond Sutra, and this is what occurs to all beings attaining bodhisattvahood.

What did Jesus Christ teach? He taught that one attains salvation, which in Buddhist parlance is “enlightenment” or in one sect “entering the pure land,” in the realization of one’s true nature. Symbolically this is shown as a sacrifice because outwardly one sacrifices one’s superficiality, ignorance and fake self only to discover the true Spirit, the Spirit that always was in the beginning and shall ever be.

People today are in a fortunate situation of living in this post-modern time where it’s probably easier to live than any time before, yet they generally aren’t that happy or fulfilled. Consequently, they may turn to the practice of psychology for answers. Modern psychology was developed not much more than a century and a half ago. The psychology of spiritual awakening and meaning has been available for many millennia, but people haven’t learned it correctly, so modern psychology has cropped up. Ultimately, when psychology becomes accurate it will be the same as religion; it will become religion itself. Of course, religion, where it is faulty, will have to become accurate, too. Psychology emerged as a result of religion not doing its job, to try to fill the void. Until the field of psychology understands that our true nature is our essence and that our ego orientation is false, it won’t be truly effective and will remain in its unscientific rut. Yes, it may help to teach us in some small way to integrate into society better, but overall psychology can’t accomplish that much in its current form.

People have goals and activities, which on a superconscious level are an attempt to return to God. No matter how crude, materialistic or selfish, the goals still are an attempt to attain the godhead. The purpose of psychology, religion and philosophy should be to explain how to return to our true nature and help guide the vessel in the proper direction.

When we think about Good Friday, what would be the proper attitude and perspective to have? 

I would simply suggest that the traditional Christian approach, which is to believe that Jesus died for our sins, is a correct beginner’s understanding. On an inner level, the understanding is that we ourselves need to make a sacrifice, sacrificing the things to which we cling, allowing us the chance for true spiritual attainment.

Jesus, by dying, is dramatically demonstrating what the disciple, the advanced student, needs to do: “Take up your cross and follow me.” To emphasize free choice, Jesus makes it clear that he didn’t have to go through with it. Even though he loved his friends and family and had a choice to be spared from his death, he was willing to go through the process in order to embed this new kind of sacrificing into our minds.

This is reminiscent of The Diamond Sutra Chapter 14, in which the Buddha discusses his lifetime when he was dismembered through violent activities, his arms and legs cut off. Again it is the same teaching, giving an example of someone who attains a level where they can see who they are universally and connect to that. We look at the story of Jesus Christ, and we can see that experience in ourselves. Our own suffering, instead of just being unnecessary and painful, can turn into something beneficial and useful.

Esoteric religion, in other words, true religion, which is very rare, teaches how to transform. Psychologists lack the knowledge to approach this in a deep way. Nowadays people flippantly use words such as “transformation” and “empowerment.” Those are supposed to be esoteric terms, but people have stolen them from religion and today use them for things that are not transformational and not empowerment. Spiritual transformation is the change whereby one attains one’s true nature.

If people are unkind to us because of our own bad karma and things we did in the past, if we have anger and angst about that, does that perpetuate the negative karma rather than purifying it?

It’s very likely that we may react and have some anger and angst. It’s important to look into those and see the ineffable quality of the anger and angst so they don’t occur but a few more times until they are gone. Yes, it would be nice if we didn’t have those, but if they arise we let them transform through natural awareness and the connection we have with our higher self, true nature and the kingdom of heaven.

In the state of the view, rigpa, our own natural mind, which is accomplished through meditation, empowerment, contemplation and instruction, we can understand these things. Otherwise we can only experience a naive life, believing certain things are real and other things are not real, vacillating between hope and fear.

April 10, 2019

The Koan ‘Finger Pointing at the Moon’

‘Finger pointing at the moon’ is a Zen koan, which means it is impossible to say what is. If I say the word "apple," it doesn't really mean an apple. It could signify the apple I left in the refrigerator. That could be useful temporarily, but it doesn't have any ultimate meaning in terms of "apple": it is only a symbol to represent something.

Even if Shakyamuni Buddha himself were to appear to us, the teaching that he would give would not be the ultimate truth. The truth cannot be told. Words are just sounds: they have no ultimate meaning. The Dharma, capital "D," in the end, is just another dharma (phenomenon), small “d.” It is fabricated; it's a part of the skandhas. The skandhas of our mental body, emotional body and physical body need to align within the wisdom of Dharma, which means we become enlightened through not knowing. This is not to imply we don't need to receive teachings; rather, that all teachings aren’t true.

What spiritual teachings are supposed to be is pointing to the moon. I'm pointing because I want you to know about the moon. I can't really give you the moon because it is already there in the sky. Everything I do is simply pointing at that moon over and over again. You may hear me saying different things, but each one is another way of pointing at the moon. Sometimes I raise my hand straight up in the air; other times I gesture with my index finger. I might jerk my arm back and forth, jump up and down, or even run in circles and shout, "Hey, look up there!” In various ways I’m trying to get you to see the moon.

Some people refuse to gaze at the moon. Those who are unable to look up, whose necks are bent down, are like animals. They only can look down; they cannot look up. What the masters and bodhisattvas do for these folks is tell them stories about the moon. They give secondary teachings to people of lower intelligence so that in the future they can be in resonance with the kingdom of heaven.

If spiritual teachings can only point at the moon, what allows some people to recognize their nature upon receiving those teachings? 

What makes them recognize their nature is they understand what pointing at the moon means. We could drink some wine, eat a cracker and take communion; we could get dunked in the Jordan River and receive baptism; or we could point at the moon and say, "That's the moon up there. See my finger? I'm pointing at it. There it is." Most people don't believe the moon is there because they have nihilism, that is, pessimism or fear. Then they flip to the opposite and have immature hope. Neither hope nor fear is one’s nature.

What is being pointed at in the communion, the baptism, or pointing to the moon is something transcendent: how things actually are. Some people understand what is being pointed at. We can do a little dance or perform a ritual, but we can't really say what is. The symbol is only a metaphor, a substitute. We dunk somebody in a river or sprinkle water on them because water is flowing and cleansing; it’s a very magical substance. The moon is a mystical, glowing orb in the sky, and we point at it. Of course, we are not really pointing to the moon. We are not astronomers; the moon is merely symbolic. My finger indicates, "Look at that!" Someone who didn't understand might think, "There must be something very esoteric about the moon." No, it's not just about the moon. There is a finger—pointing to—the moon.

The question is why does one person not get it and another person get it? The answer is the person who doesn't get it is obscured, and the person who gets it is unobscured. The first person does many conceptual somersaults and proclaims, "The moon's rays are healing me and I'm having a visionary experience!" but that isn't what is happening. The second person has a clear, non-manipulative mind. They realize that the thing to “get” is something intrinsic, and they recognize the siddhi and attain the samadhi of suchness that arises from that. Their mind is like water, which can take any imprint or shape.

Finger pointing at the moon, water baptism, wine and bread communion, these are symbols for the recognition of one's nature.

April 8, 2019

Advanced Spiritual Work Using the Essences of Plants, Minerals and Celestial Bodies

Once, in New Mexico about 25 years ago, I had an experience that launched the Lovestream Essences of Nature System, also called ‘LENS’ for short. I was hiking alone in a mountain meadow where there were vast flowing ribbons of purple wildflowers. In samadhi, in a moment of reverie, I noticed that things were happening to and around me. In this state I could see the energy of the carpet of flowers, wild irises, converging into my body and then ascending upward into a group of spiritual beings along with my higher self. Although I had worked with essences of nature for years, I was amazed that something very different was occurring. The beings who were entraining my higher self explained that I was being taught a new potent way to work with the energy of flower essences. I was ordained to accomplish this with any essence.

It may be asked who ordained this unusual spiritual activity. The teaching of LENS, the Lovestream Essences of Nature System, comes from the Master Kuthumi’s ashramic angelic group and my own wisdom on a soul level.

From then, I began collecting the essences of flowers and plants for the LENS system. As of today there are about three thousand natural plants and flowers in the LENS/Lovestream Essences of Nature System, as well as possibly countless combinations and angelic synthetics. Two years later LENS was expanded to include Gemstone, Rock and Mineral essences, and not long after, the LENS Planet, Star and Cosmic Essences.

Advanced spiritual people find Lovestream and LENS by intuition. With permission I gave empowerment and mantras to some spiritual initiates. LENS is a new version of inner tantric spiritual work. By feeling what it is to be a particular flower, for example, some can transform into that state. It requires a non-manipulated state of consciousness and flexibility of mind. One might ask, “How could I relate to a plant; how could I experience plantness instead of humanness?” To be up front, only a bodhisattva can derive great benefit from the Lovestream Essences of Nature System; others might receive more conventional types of blessings.

What happens when one experiences a ‘LENS session’ is that angels from Kuthumi’s ashram give an imprint of the energy of a particular plant, mineral or celestial body. They help incorporate it into the body and aura, and expand, strengthen and purify it. Normally, a highly aware person may notice the energetics of a flower in front of them: the flower is there, and they are here, and their auras intermingle slightly. When using LENS the angelic energies are taking the essence of the flower, rock or even planet, purifying any toxic elements, and then mixing it with proper potency into the recipient’s energy field.

There are healing qualities within plants, minerals, even planets and stars. The LENS energies help to spiritualize a person’s body so they can realize the meaning of meta-genius teachings—the esoteric teachings including termas, Dzogchen, beatitudes, Tao Te Ching, advaita (nonduality), tantras, Zen—more deeply and quickly. Also, if a particular energy isn’t something that would be of benefit, or if in fact the energies of certain flowers, gemstones or planets would be inappropriate or not indicated, the wisdom within the LENS angels can automatically ascertain that and make any corrections, including deleting the request to perform the energy work. The Lovestream Essences of Nature System has the discriminating wisdom to know the difference between something that would harm or help a person.

For example, poison oak is in LENS, but it couldn’t make the recipient itch. The Lovestream Essences of Nature System is not going to give people the poisonous quality, but it could even help them to overcome hypersensitivity.

When someone enters a profound spiritual path, Lovestream precedes LENS. One must be able to receive the basic Lovestream empowerments and have a relationship with one’s higher self (which is a more honest level of oneself) before being considered for LENS. LENS is equally advanced to Lovestream in the sense that a person needs to have a concise connection to their wisdom nature to engage in something that requires a highly sensitized and multi-dimensional awareness. If somebody received Lovestream, opened up initially and then closed back tightly, they won’t be able to understand LENS. Only bodhisattva-level initiates should be given the LENS empowerments. Just as one wouldn’t hand a child a heavy bag of groceries that they aren’t strong enough to carry, one wouldn’t want to give someone who lacks a robust wisdom something they can’t handle or use properly.

Skilled practitioners can use LENS in an advanced or a more utilitarian way. Either way, they follow the directions exactly regarding how to perform the energetic awakening, but some hold more to a conceptual idea of what LENS is supposed to do, whereas advanced practitioners opens to the meditative, luminous qualities of the energies to which they are being introduced as an awakening experience. This energy awareness is the practice of neigong, or naikan. Some people cling to an idea that they are doing some sort of clinical work when they practice LENS. It can be done that way, but the point is that not every practitioner is aware of LENS’ potential for anuttara samyak sambodhi, inconceivable complete awakening.

On higher levels LENS is considered a subsidiary empowerment. From a perspective of the masters it is an adjunct to suchness/higher self empowerment. If one has only a moderately opened understanding of one’s higher self, one could sometimes still receive the LENS empowerment and use it to help open one’s awareness to some degree and expand one’s healing capacities. However, one who has a deeper understanding can use it as a tantric tool to reach the end of learning.

The Secret Book of Awakening: Essays on Esoteric Religious Completion, by Sol Ta Triane, Copyright © 2019