Tuesday, February 20, 2018

What is Shikantaza?

If I tell you to sit and meditate, what do you do?
In a recent question the person asked what to do when losing focus in shikantaza: return to the breath, return to body awareness or otherwise?
If you were doing 'sit and meditate' these would be valid answers.
However, shikantaza is not 'sit and meditate'. It's Just, only, exactly, precisely sitting.
The moment you return to the breath you are not doing 'only sitting'.
The same applies to 'return to awareness of the body', this is also not 'only sitting'. The moment you are thinking about sitting you are not doing Just, only, exactly, precisely sitting. Even when you sit without any point of focus but sitting and have the notion 'I'm doing 'sitting and nothing else' you are off.

To know the difference you'd have to experiment. What does it mean to sit and meditate? You probably know this. 
But what does it mean to do Just, only, exactly, precisely sitting?
You'd have to work to understand just that. And it's not an easy task.

Quora - Internet.- The difference between 'just sitting' and meditation.

Monday, February 19, 2018

What the subconscious has in store.

 If and when it decides to happen it will begin in Hawaii with the catastrophic eruptions of volcanoes and the sinking of an island or two in the process. This followed by a massive quake along the Western Seaboard of the United States and along the Peruvian and Chilean coast and is followed by massive tsunamis. Ha! This was in my mind as I was waking up this morning and I sat contemplating on this for a while making up my mind to write it down in my Blog entry or not. With the awakening of the ruptures in Hawaii a chain of volcanic activities will follow all the way through Japan and the Pacific NorthWest along the 'Ring of Fire'. I cannot remember how  I got into this line of discussion or who with in my sleep, but I woke up with this whole scenario of the end of this beautiful Planet as we know it. All I could think of after sitting on it for a while is that I am glad it came to an end not because of some dickheads pushing the panic button.
It may sound strange but I have had many such 'visions' throughout my life and a few even materialized into reality which had scared me somewhat, but I brushed such occurrences off as pure imagination or fantasy; I had always kept to myself things that I know will make others feel uncomfortable if I start sharing my thoughts like this i would end up being a laughing stock or feared as a freak. Mostly i attribute it all to too much You Tube or movies, too much 'sitting' or vivid imaginations. Whatever it may be, I am sharing this now so as to get it out of the way of my consciousness and not keep having to deal with such episode as they arise time and again when I least expect it. 
So, what is the point in sharing this? This is how my mind is, this is how it operates among other myriads of modus operandi it has and this is what i have to be conscious and content with if i am a true seeker of truth, (for lack of better thing to call it by). The human mind is and enigma that is the most elusive and can be the most damaging companion a man can have throughout his life and not be aware of it. In its egoic form, the mind can even surpass God or the Buddhas, it is the most feared and worshipped by those who are blind to its wiles. In Islam it is called the Nafs,
Nafs (نَفْس) is an Arabic word (cognate of the Hebrew word nefesh נפש) occurring in the Qur'an and means self, psyche ego or soul. In the Quran, the word is used in both the individualistic (e.g. verse 2:48) and collective sense (verse 4:1), indicating that although humanity is united in possessing the qualities of a "soul/nafs/consciousness" they are individually responsible for exercising the agencies of their "free will" that it provides them.
 It is in getting to understand the workings of this entity that calls itself 'I' that I have been running around in circles trying to pinpoint every facet of its workings and infinite possibilities. Without understanding the human mind and its inner and outer engineering, there is no science or religion, and there is no empires or civilizations; man does not exist as man. What the mind contains in itself is the universe itself and every individual mind is like a hologram containing itself within itself ; it is a matter of consciousness if one is or is not aware of this fact. An awakened mind sees beyond duality, all is one within one is all. 

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Finding the Balancing Act

Finding a good balance in all that you do, all the you perceive, all that you imagine or hope for, is a good virtue to practice. To know when to say enough is enough, is also another virtue worth developing in oneself. The Chinese cosmic symbol of Yin and Yang is the most illustrative of symbols when it comes to 'Balance'. in Nature and the  Human Nature. Somewhere in between light and dark is the comfortable point at which all things comes to rest in neither light nor darkness; the silence space in between two thoughts. Here happens the merging of all in unity.and being in this state of mindfulness is to stay awaken to the 'Whole' all around and within you. This is when the Chi, Hara, Pranna or energy in you to flow fluidly with every breath, in and out, perfectly balanced with no effort but just pure awareness of  every sensation in the body and mental state. In all this, the observer sits and watch allowing for it to just happen...this is meditation in action.
The music is great when listened with well balanced amount of loudness and silence, high and low pitch and so forth; this what makes good sound of music, music that raises your spirit and soul to the peak of awareness and consciousness, a state of simply 'beingness'. One can only arrive at this state of equanimity and tranquility through effortlessness or effortlessly; by non doing, in other words through 'bare attention'. The sunset was mesmerising until my mind wished that it had a camera. Being in a state of perfect balance is like sitting in the canoe that is running down the rapids with jagged rocks and steep falls; keeping the balance is paramount to your survival; you don't think twice. We trip ourselves from too much thinking and attachments and distractions; we are thrown off balance by our hesitation in actions we take. Many lives were lost in duels whether between Samurai warriors or Western Gunslingers, simply due to a slight hesitation or doubt happens while in action. Being spontaneous is happens when there is a silence in the mind, the absence of any thought consciously or otherwise and acting out spontaneously will never know defeat.
While all has come to perfect balance the sense of self drops, there is no more out there or in here, there is only being here. Even the observer is dropped; no body,no mind, and no perception of body and mind. Meditation is one of the surest means of getting to this state of consciousness but it is not the only means.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Which I Am is present?

As the Buddha is said to have said, life indeed is suffering and those who thinks otherwise are either deceiving themselves or too far asleep to notice the difference, or are living in self denial. Many would disagree with the Buddha's take of life as suffering perhaps simply because of the fact that their life had been pretty much okay except for the facts that cannot be helped like getting sick, growing old and dying or lost a loved one or getting s divorce or owing money to a loan shark, other than these few hiccups, life seems okay. The question is why do we suffer at all, the mental and emotional anguish, the spiritual torment and worse of all the physical aches and pains. Why do we suffer collectively, wars and , famine, natural and man made disasters, why do we have to become victims to every acts of terror and economic exploitations?
The answer is i believe is that human beings a inherently masochistic by nature. We love our suffering, we love being subject to pain and humiliation  often without being aware of it that we suffer this delusion. We create all sorts of excuses and justifications to prove otherwise, that we are absolutely normal contrary to the Buddha's observation that we are living in a realm of Maya or delusion. If indeed the Buddha is right, then, how the hell do we get out of this bondage, how do we wake up from this nightmare we call life?  The answer off course quite simple, awake and stay awaken. Become fully conscious within and without, and become absolutely at one with the whole; as within so without.
Dwelling over the fact that is suffering itself is one of the worse kind of suffering in itself. however as my friend Dr Peter O'Yimbo used to say, there is suffering without bitterness, it it more noble. Most of us suffer in silence while others suffer with courage and dignity, there some who suffer with rage and anger;  worthy is he who suffer with patience and perseverance. The question still is, how to end suffering and the Buddha in His infinite Wisdom has spelled it out for mankind the formula and antidote to our predicament some two thousand five hundred years ago. Today mankind has turned His revelation into a religion but not as a practice or a way of life. Huge Buddha statues and stupas are erected all over the land but the practice of the precepts is buried deep in the ground of consciousness beneath these monuments. Those that take up the Buddha's teachings today are a drop in the bucket compared to the size of humanity itself. 
The Buddha declared that, 'suffering is, but none who suffers. The Buddha's Way is but none who practice it and Nirvana is but none who attain it.' For so long as the I is there is suffering, Suffering seizes when the I is no more. "I am no more." Hence, who or what is 'I'? Who Am I? 
Self-enquiry, also spelled self-inquiry (Sanskrit vichara, also called jnana-vichara[1] or ātma-vichār), is the constant attention to the inner awareness of "I" or "I am" recommended by Ramana Maharshi as the most efficient and direct way of discovering the unreality of the "I"-thought.
Ramana taught that the "I"-thought will disappear and only "I-I"[web 1] or self-awareness remains. This results in an "effortless awareness of being",[2] and by staying with it[web 2] this "I-I" gradually destroys the vasanas "which cause the 'I'-thought to rise,"[2] and finally the 'I'-thought never rises again, which is Self-realization or liberation.[2]

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Just getting ready to face the One.

All that has been taught by the great teachers and masters. of saints and savants, all that the philosophers and truth seeker has  discovered and shared through books and videos, TED talks and Satsangs. they all means nothing at this moment. J.Krishnamurti is laughing in his grave while Alan Watts is playing his shakuhachi to a bunch of Japanese tourists on his Houseboat in Sausalito, while Ram dass is repeating his days spent at the feet of his Guru in India. Deepak Chopra and Michio Kaku or whatever his name is are very busy preparing the future generations towards the ultimate consciousness and the prospect of living among extraterrestrials in the days to come. The conspiracy theorists have spun all manner   of yarns over hidden agendas as to who is really running the show for all of us while the environmentalists are running out of options as to what is to become of the glacial meltdown due to climate change.
Sometimes it is just best to just sit back and watch an erotic Japanese video of a housewife trying to seduce her daughter's lover by exposing her charms while cleaning the bathtub. Sad indeed how the mind can and will coerce you towards debasing yourself when all else fails. All the knowledge and understanding you have acquired throughout your life means diddly when it comes to facing a mind bent upon lust even when you are approaching seventy! The truth is painful but it has to be told if not exposed if one is to do a thorough house cleaning of the mental formations. For those who has no sexual drives or handicaps whatsoever, they are indeed blessed, but for one whose life has been one long sexual drive, it is a curse for to turn it off can be a nightmare. So, sometimes i give in and tell myself to just sit back and have fun, musterbation and ejeculation are part and parcel of being human, you can torture yourself with guilt or you can just take a good cleansing shower before you pray. 
Like my Palestinian friend Hakim Dawah used to say at his frame shop in the Mission District of San Francisco, on Valencia street to be exact, "Allah is forgiving, He don't really pay too much attention to these minor offences like having an orgasm." However try not to make it a habit where it becomes a cause for concern towards your well being. Like all good things try  to for a good balance, walk the middle way and no extreme,the  or excessiveness. Let the mind has its way every now and then, or it can become a pain in the butt if all its desires are being slammed shut Off course if one is well versed into the workings of the mind then the matter of sexual promiscuity,lustful desires and so forth are not much of an issue especially if one is a sadhu or a yogi, but I am not any of theses. I was, perhaps still is a sexual maniac and had created many untold problems both  for myself as well as others, most of which is best laid to rest and not to be revealed here,
I have lived life as i often admit to myself to the fullest, like no holds barred especially when it comes to sex. I am not bragging nor am I proud of having given myself into lustful desires and warped imaginations when it comes to sex, but I am trying to reach a point in my life where i can look at it all with a more accepting feeling than a guilt ridden regrets. To a great extent I have come close towards this acceptance of who I am and what i am capable of in my life. With this acceptance I feel much lighter and is able to let go of self mortification over my past actions. Yes, I believe my Lord is oft forgiving and most Merciful, however i also feel I need to do my own house cleaning before i stand before the One and have the One to one talk about life.
Before dropping off or letting go I must know what it is that I am letting go and understand as to why or how of it. Off course I do not have to do in essence any such thing at all as I am in essence non-existent, I really do not exist as this body or mind. However, true to my practice i am taking it upon myself to share myself and my understanding for the sake of others  with similar path in life; thus fulfilling my Bodhisatva vows.




Same old same old.

There were days when I am sure that being alive is one long cosmic joke that the good lord has laid out for me and if so so has he for everyone else that exist in my space  and time today. I often feel this way when I have exhausted my mind with all kinds of stuff that I have fed it through exposing it to the garbage on the internet and by reading and writing or by simply sitting and daydreaming. These are among the options one has to keep the mind occupied, but off course there are other more radical preoccupations such as drinking or getting high or joining a monastery up in the mountains somewhere, but these are becoming harder to entertain as an option considering my present status. 
I promised myself to stick around and keep an eye on my daughter while she is still in need of my company if not my presence. She is still not fully established with he affairs in life and it perhaps gives her an incentive to feel good about taking care of her father, which she is in more than one way. My three boys are as good as out sight and out of mind where their father is concerned, my karma perhaps as was between me and my father. But i guess that is what normally happens between fathers and sons as they grow older. My boys were never really mine, they belonged to the mothers that bore them and cared for them. I am the expendable father who failed to be around when needed; such is! However it is rather interesting how each one of them came up with how to deal with their own father issues; filial piety is not an issue here. It was never mine, how could it be theirs; karma sucks!
Why am I rambling on over such personal matters which are of no consequence to anyone really? Well, it is part and parcel of my psychic showcase, it is an effort to make sense out of non-sense as how my mind view things. Before I breath my final breath i would like to at the very least have a thorough understanding of what all these so called mental formations are all about, if it is really true that I am what I think. How potent are my thoughts? Can i affect the lives of others by my thoughts or can they affect me by theirs and how do I avoid getting sucked into this 'mind games?' Is it too late to ask at my age? I started to ask about the 'thinker' in me a very long time ago and am still on the track to find out. Who am I? What am I capable of or why  am i the way I am. I am not this body nor am I this mind, I fully realize and have accepted this years ago but am still not fully convinced of who I truly am. Am I this? All there is to it? Is this all there is to it, feeling like a washed out artist and a wannabe writer, a man without a home, estranged from his family and friends? 
I often ask my friends as i have asked myself, what have you to show that you can be absolutely proud of, of who you are. That you have lived your life well and fruitfully benefitting yourself and others? What significant contribution have you made to your fellow man or your society that can be considered to be worthy of being bragged about. If you cannot find any then you have merely occupied space and time in this life and nothing more. The air you breath, the water you drink and the fruits of the earth and the flames that had kept you warm are wasted elements spent on you. How can you wake up every morning and look at yourself in the mirror and think of yourself such a superior being in the animal kingdom, top of the food chain, yada! yada! How could you have such superiority complex about your status in the world when you do not have any idea of who you truly are?

Tuesday, February 06, 2018

Looking to the past to heal the present.

I had a long pleasant chat with my long time buddy Jerry Sule, the plumber of Green Bay, Wisconsin and back a whole lot of fond memories especially our long trip together to the South West states of the States. Jerry is the youngest of the Sule Brothers, in whose home I used to hang out when I was a student at the University of Wisconsin in Green Bay. Although very much my junior in age he was one of my closest friend I had back then, he was close to me like a younger brother. We hung out in the basement of his house where I was a squatter being homeless after my divorce from my first wife. Sometimes there were four of us including Jerry's brothers John and Joe who also attended UWGB. The boys were all very smart and active students indoors and outdoors. I became a part of the Sule family for a number of years.
I wrote about this time of my life in more detail in the past so i will not dwell on it any further other than to say that Jerry and the whole Sule family will always be in my memory. My life of eight years in Wisconsin  was in many ways a time of pain and pleasure, it helped to shape me for who I am today. I was divorced and had to give up my son in green Bay and I graduated from the University in the same great city. it was here too that i made the decision to embark upon my journey of self healing and self discovery after years of living adrift from one relationship to another and homeless most of the time. I survived the cold winters and the drinking habit and I left the City for good when it was time to burning the bridge behind me. However i will always hold fond memories of having lived among the people who took me into their lives and kept me warm when it was freezing out.
One of the paradox of this inner journey of self discovery is the fact that one has to look back into the past in the effort to let go of the past. I realize that for the mind to make a clean drop of all past baggage I have to look back and understand what had transpired and come to a reconciliation with myself before i can forgive and forget and I have been doing this throughout my writing. Today, my past has since slid into oblivion and I feel allot lighter in being, I feel like i have shed to old and the past and am able to move on without too much clinging to the past experiences which often held me in bondage in the form of guilt and regrets. It is no doubt that mind has the tendency to cling on to the deficiencies, the weaknesses the errors and failures of the past rather than the opposite and this often culminates into the causes for low self esteem and depression.
I am pretty much at peace in my life these days but am still looking back every now and then when thoughts of my past arises. In this state of peacefulness I look back with better clarity and am better at resolving my past issues.I am feeling better about who I am even if it is so late in my life, but it is happening. I am better at handling my anger factor and have less doubts and misconception about my true nature, knowing that I am no better or worse than the next man. Yes, I am beginning to love life for what it is and demand less and expecting nothing other than doing my share as a human being 
in making a better world for all around me. I can now face my Lord with a better and clearer conscience and less troubled by the guilts of my past. It is said that an indication that one is forgiven of a sin is when the sin is buried for good. no memory of it is left.   

Saturday, February 03, 2018

When looking, finding begins.

I have the feeling God wants me to live as I am, a cigarette smoker, and a pot smoker if and when available, an occasional beer drinker, and a wanna be spiritually awakened individual with a long history of womanizing. Another confession after fajr or dawn prayer? Perhaps, From my 12th. floor apartment window the sky is lined with an orange glow over the city of Georgetown, Penang. I am listening to Anoushka Shankar on her sitar accompanied by the tabla at to make as I as I sit to male this Blog entry that has 50 followers worldwide and 516796 views to date, a Blog that got started sometime in 2005 while living in Kuala Terengganu, on the East Coast of the peninsula Malaysia. I am a father to four beautiful children, 3 boys and the youngest, my  daughter, is asleep in her room and would wake up sometime later just before noon as she a night person.
This on going journal is a continuation of my sketchbook journal which I had started sometime in 1978 when I visited England on a college trip form the University of Wisconsin in the United States. Incidentally, have you listened to Tina Turner sing Sarvesham Svastir Bhavatu ( Peace Mantra) on You Tube? Check it out. Back to my Blog after a short break to play with my cat that my daughter nImed 'Furby' and which I decided to call 'Firball', I do this as she demands the attention by scratching and biting my leg to play. Yes, I am now keeping my self busy with the simple things in life while I can. I meditate and do my Yoga stretching almost every day which I feel is beginning to show some positive result with my physical and mental state.Call it discipline or what you may, but I making my point in practice that making a consistent effort in any pursuit will bear fruit in the long run; I call it my spiritual practice. A combo of a little of this and a little of that to help me see through the day with a little positivity. 
I feel that God in whatever name you call Him is everyone's friend. He is in everyone's heart if you choose to look for Him there and to do so you have to empty your mind and reach your heart. The essence of your being is divine and let no one tell you otherwise, you are who or what you perceive yourself to be; perceive the highest of manifestation and why not. I am the Buddha Nature, I am the Christ Spirit and I am the Atma Brahman, I am the servant of my Lord; Allahu Akbar! It only means that i find my refuge in Islam as you find yours in your own Divinity.

"It basically means that in our deepest selves, we are divine. All living things are divine in their deepest selves. Now, that divine self may be hidden or covered over by hatred, envy, fear or other negative things. But, it is there nonetheless and it is our "true" and "eternal" selves." 
World Religions - Proffessor.com.  

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

The End is the beginning..

In all my digging and experimenting with my life I have yet to find the truth to who I am or what my status is in the total scheme of the universal or collective consciousness of the whole. I still feel like I am floating in and out of consciousness often helpless and mindless of what is happening to me, my self. Through my meditation and self discovery practices, my sense of awareness and and connectivity to the whole is somewhat awakened, perhaps a little better or more cute than the guy who wades through life day to day obliviously. It has become somewhat of an obsession with me in delving into the inner workings of my body and mind so much so that my days are filled more with inner dwelling than living the external life like I used to. There are days when I doubt my intentions and attribute my pursuit to simply as an escape from the so called 'reality' of life.
I have turnedapal to religion and spiritual paths and i have taken many a 'wrong' turns often willingly or consciously just to see what happens. Sometimes i discover the small miracles or the inadvertent consequences  of my actions and these proved my point of intention, like 'as you sow, so shall you reap.' I filed these mini discoveries away into my mental database often with a smile or with a frown to myself, but it works, I would remind myself. The laws of cause and effect, the karmic laws of what goes around comes around, or Kodor and kodar as it is termed in Islam, is an inescapable part of who I am. From my most subtle thought to my most drastic action, I find throughout my life that this has been one of the simple truth that governs my being in this life. Hence i try as much as possible to think and act positively and not become the bull in the China shop or the rambunctious and incorrigible entity that creates waves just to test the waters like I once was. Perhaps this is part of growing old.
One of  the causes of this state of mind which from the careless and free wheeling attitude to the present more conscious if not conscientious attitude stems from my seeing with a more clear vision  of what my role  as a human being in life is. I cannot allow for my ego or my small self to take a hold of my thoughts and actions any longer. I as a matter of fact have to become self-less. I have to be less self serving and take on servitude, less acquiring and more giving, less, less emotional and more spiritual in essence. I feel I have come to realize the simple truth that has been escaping my search all these while and that is, I am merely a soul in search of itself. Just as the Zen tale of the master who sat on his ox while searching for it all over the countryside.
I am closer to home as i can ever be and my journey i feel is slowly coming to end after all these years realizing to myself that all I have been doing is enjoying myself as a Blogger.This effort of putting my thoughts in writing has been a tremendous help to getting to where I am at this present moment is in time and space. It is perhaps not much of a discovery,but suffice to say that i have arrived and having arrived, I can now leave my past and embark upon my future and discover what else is there that lay in store for me, this, that I call who I am.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Of Buddhism and Islam.

It is 4 in the morning and i have been up opting the night sleep for the sleeping it out during the day. This switching back and forth of my sleeping habit is nothing new and is indeed part of my experiment and practice in order to dig deeper into my mental state by disrupting any form of normality to my physical and mental habits. I am repeating this information to myself as i must have done this numerous times in my Blog entries in the past. The hour is crucial in my practice as it is when I perform my Ishak solat or the  late evening solat and then followed by two rakats of voluntary or 'tahajub' prayer. I used to do this in the past off and on according to my whims and mood or how i felt towards God and religion, or if and when I felt like it. No, I was never a 'good' Muslim. I have issues with my Lord and I know fully well i will answer for my pride and arrogance comes judgement day.
No I am not trying to get 'brownie points from my extra zealousness in trying hard to pray five times a day, but yes i have my worries that the consequences of my doubts will be not so good when I die. One of my brothers reminded me ever so clearly that Islam has no compromise, this was the epic discussion between us on the religion, just the ultimate threat. So my relationship with my Maker is very personal indeed, it has been a love hate relationship, one that is like a father and a very pissed off son. However, and I say this with all sincerity and faith, that i have my believe in the Lord's Mercy and Compassion at the very core of my heart. I sincerely believe that it is through His will that i have lived my life as I have had and still do. At every end of my prayer I always ask for forgiveness and that i be protected from evil, and that my children be safe wherever they be and that my Lord forgive the sins of my parents and my late wife and place them among the Muslims in His heaven. I also surrender my will unto Him and thankful for all that has been given to me especially my good health. 
What have i got to loose? I am barely making up for my years of going against God's will and perhaps its is too late to repent, but I am repenting and not because any Imam says so or that I fear for my life after death, no, i ave alwado it simply because i believe. I have always believed and even in my darkest moment of my soul and I point my middle finger at my Lord in anger, I believed perhaps even more so. No doubt I was raised a Buddhist for twelve years of my life until I was converted to Islam, however I grew up  among Muslims all those twelve years, I watched my grandmother prayed every day never missing a prayer of five times a day; I was a Muslim at heart while being raised a Buddhist. I value Buddhism for its practical teachings about how to deal with my physical and emotional life and I value Islam with my relationship with my Maker.  

Monday, January 29, 2018

And this too shall pass...

Comparing my status living day to as I am is one of the most intrusive and negative element that threatens to tear me down psychologically and emotionally if not spiritually. I am every so often invaded by thoughts that I am not doing much and wasting my time away compared to my siblings, my relatives and friends.  r These thoughts creeps into my head like some sour smell making me feel like I am a looses  who has given up on life while seeking for spiritual answers within me as an escape. Am I? Am I becoming a good for nothing has been apperson with no more gumption to go out and get it kind of person I used to be not too long ago? Or am I assuming that my siblings, relatives and friends are living the life of Riley while I am among those who have given up. Perhaps I am, perhaps I am and all these'Way seeking Mind' trip has been one long hoax of a self delusion. 
It would indeed be a sade realization to discover that it had all been a waste or that I should not have my thirst for life living the Bohemian lifestyle I am well known for in my younger days. A Man who cared fro nothing and feared no one, willing to take chances and walk away from relationships at the drop of a hat, a a man, stubborn, proud and mostly angry at the world. I did got allot more done for better or worse back then and was at times the envy of those who played it safe with life's trials and tribulations. I took what life had to offer, wine women and money and threw it all back out at the world and I 'have squandered my resistance for a pocket full of marbles' like the song said, felt little or no regrets while I was at it. I had allowed my ego, my mind to take hold of my appetites thinking that to resist was futile and would add up to my neurotic tendencies and so i fulfilled as much as I could anything and everything that came my way and I survived.
Why do I feel less than accomplished today, why do I feel lacking and even guilt ridden when sitting and reflecting what has been? Is this what growing old is all about? Perhaps it is and my past is catching with me or that God is preparing my for what is to come by reminding me my waking me up to work towards cleaning up spiritually with the extra years I have been given. If so, is my meager effort at praying and asking for forgiveness enough to cover all the past mistakes I have accrued? Perhaps not. Perhaps I am destined to face the worse case scenario, like hell in the hereafter. If this is so than I do envy my siblings and my relatives and friends who are good religious people, who has lived life according to the divine will and plan. 
As for me, I can only hope for the Mercy and Compassion of a  loving God who had allowed for me to walk my own path in this life as His way of testing me. I  will live on making sure that all my effort at trying to have a right understanding of who I truly am and why I am here living a life of delusion in an illusory existence; the world of Maya.
"I am Whole, Perfect, Strong and Powerful,
 Loving, Compassionate, Harmonious, and Happy!,
And i can do what I will to do,
So help me Lord!"

And this too shall pass... 

Saturday, January 27, 2018

God and me.

Woke up and did my subuh or fajr, or morning prayer after a real wet dream of being with a bikini clad young caucasian lady running all over some weird beach trying to find a place to fornicate. We ran from one weird scene to another but was always obstructed by  other peoples' presence. When at last I was ready to desperately fulfill my lut I managed to get myself to the lustful pursuit in some little corner of the beach hidden from sight i could not do it because i found I was wearing a condom that was filled with a few coins at the tip of the rubber! Weird! I felt the tip of my penis was blocked from making my entry and much less ejaculting.
I was woken up by the distant sound of prayer that came from the loud speakers of the State Mosque as the morning prayer was being performed. Normally the sound of the call to prayer by the Muezzin would be much louder but I missed it entirely and was awaken by the much softer sound of the prayer itself. I got out of bed begrudgingly and almost went back to sleep but decided to not give in to my weakness. I am and has been weak when it comes to performing my prayers especially the morning prayer. For the past week I must have missed two or three days of the morning prayer and felt not much of a loss about it and i am 68 years old! My God! How I have come to this! It is not that I am afraid of being punished but I am more ashamed of my not having the will and discipline enough to carry out this obligation. Priding myself as one who meditates and pursue spiritual practices, I am helpless when it comes to praying two 'rakats' or prostrations, the first of the five daily prayers in the early morning hours in honor of my Lord!
This has been my lot in truth throughout most of my life as far as my faith an belief in God is concern. had i been successful in fornicaitng in my dream I would have skipped yet another morning prayer. I remember an experience many years ago upon returning to Malaysia from the US, whereby i was humping away at a female companion in real life while the call to prayer from a nearby mosque was loud and clear thirteen floors down below me. I was so lost into my sexual drive that I tried to block away my guilt conscience and  satisfied my lust. This episode in my life has haunted me and my mind has kept replaying this scenario again and again ever since. Call this a wake up call, or call it the subconscious mind's way of spiritual house cleaning, I am convinced that Allah has finally taken heed my call for atonement and repentant; Insha'Allah.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Seeking forgiveness in healing my soul.

All I am looking at right this moment is how much I have understood or misunderstood who I am. This entity sitting and typing on the keyboard wondering what to say or write, is this all that is of who or what i have become or amount to. It is in a way a sad feeling of loneliness and emptiness that i have very little left to find what is my true nature, my true being if not my divinity; is there such a thing? Have i been doped and fooling myself, have I been wasting all my energy and time over nothing at the expense of giving myself a better life . I have watched and listened, sat before teachers and gone through numerous experiences and practice to become awakened from this slumber of ignorance and yet why do i feel this empty feeling. 
What have i accomplished for myself that i could talk of and that can be shared with others to enlighten them and awaken them from the same state i am in? Yes i often claim to myself, I have awaken, but being awakened it seems is not a permanent state of mind and the mind is still the master dictating my state of being. 'No Mind, No Body No Self,' the Buddha is said to have said and yes i have touched this state every so often in my past, but these states of consciousness slips away as new thoughts and experiences takes a hold upon my consciousness, I slip back into this doubt filled state that has a depression shadowing in the background. Off course i can make an escape or retreat from having to face this moments of doom and gloom arising by watching a good video or listening to good music or if need be visit my friends and smoke a joint or have a fe beers like I have often done in my past, but these escape routes i find are jsut what they are an escape.
So as i have committed myself ever since I started this Blogging more than ten years ago to face my demons through revealing in writing my thoughts and feelings down I will continue this course of action. There may or may not be a light at the end of this tunnel, but I am already in it and like riding a train I will stay on the tracks and not be derailed come what may. As the saying goes, 'the heart  is a lonely hunter,' and this loneliness only I can feel for it is within me; I choose to walk this path. I have chosen yet another from of 'escape' and it is in prayer. I have thus far been keeping my five times a day prayer to the best of my ability and it is no easy matter as my mind is not allowing me to be is fully present when I perform my 'solat'. But I do find solace and comfort more so than I have ever had. Perhaps Allah has decided that I be allowed to worship Him despite my numerous transgressions in the past; I only seek His forgiveness if nothing else. 
Religion is a matter of faith and to have immovable faith I believe one has to have an imperturbable mind, an unshakable mind centred in silence. This is no easy task with a mind like mine, a mind that is full of ramblings and attachments, full of anger and imaginations; an egotistical mind. All my meditation practices to bring this mind to quiet down seems a failure, it has its own autonomy, a will of its own. Often times i have watched my mind running free imagining murder at the slightest external challenge even from strangers and it scares me; it is psychotic..  This is why I have been doing what I have over the years, trying to keep in restrain and help to keep a healing process of some sort. Yes, I could use a spiritual guide or a Guru if not a psychiatrist to help m the complete renovation of my mind although I have had them in the past. Now I have to deal with it on my own and through the means I have learned, a step at a time.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

What to do?

As I let the days slide me by sitting in my apartment and watching each and every thought and action with less and less attachment and identification, I realize how I am removed from my former self, my personality, the entity i thought of as who I am. Have i become lazy and unproductive and has my sense of creativity come to an end? Perhaps i am loosing the zeal i used to have for life as nothing seems to shake my being. Is this what it means to become detached, to be removed from the influences of the phenomenal realm, is this what it feels like to become free from clinging or dependant upon the illusory physical world Am I deluding my with justifications that are no more than repetitious thoughts and ideas God forgive if this has been nothing more than a waste of time and talent.
Oh, I realize too that i like to regurgitate myself again and again like a broken record, whining and groaning over nothing. Even when there is no more cause for complaint my mind will dig out hell from my  ancient and twist karmas for me to grapple with until I have no more defences and cave in. But all in all these as I have always are reminded myself are  food and fodder for the soil, grist for the mill. These deep rooted karmas are what keeps the mind busy and entertained while at the same time the mind unravels the and untangle the tangles to each and every past episodes and dramas, this is putting the mind to service while doing introspection and reflections in meditation. 
The mind has no problem in bringing out the worse from my past experiences and sometimes this can drive me nuts, usually making me feel guilt and low self esteem. However with constant observation and clarity i now can sieve through to make sense out of non-sense like spring cleaning my memory bank. Sitting meditation helps me to take a  step back and see what went wrong and why and ideally come to reconciliation and acceptance even if it makes sense only for the moment. Hence I started looking at this rising and falling of my mental formations as great lessons to reflect and understand better who I am, my strength and weaknesses. Taking stock of my past experiences has enhanced better my present 'darma position,' the ground from which I stand and declare who I am. Yes, most teachings will tell you that the past is best forgotten and to be in the here and now, however I came to realize that in order to let go of the past the lessons has to be learned and understood before it can be let go of.
It is no doubt a most tedious and boring way to spend the day, but in doing so I feel it is also the best way to help me further understand my original Buddha Nature; it is worth the time while doing nothing. I have spent my time fully aware that i am not doing much in terms of being productive or working like everyonamdullie else, it is a conscious choice, a practice in order that i can free myself from being trapped into the norm. On the other hand I have decided to work on myself, my practice, my belief and my faith with as little distraction as i can afford to without having to escape to a cave in the mountains. My lord has given me this whole year a quiet space on the top floor of a 12 story building to do my work on myself. To heal and to spiritually awaken and I am blessed to be able to eventually pray five times a day with complete absorption in the One True God.
Allah u Akhbar!  

Monday, January 22, 2018

The Path of Spiritual Consciousness -1

"A line is cast in the rapids,ion
The greedy is caught,
 A soon as your mouth is open,
Your life is lost."
 A Zen Koan from the 'Blue Cliff Records.

Consciousness pervades all and the mind is like a sponge that seeks out objects and phenomena that attracts its attention most, like a beautiful woman or a challenging idea and these outstanding distractions are like roadside attraction capturing my interest and attention. Consciousness is like the rapids or the super highway and the mind is like the line that attracts to itself forms and images through the five senses, it is like a camera that snaps shots that pleases or that intrigue itself amidst everything else like a greedy fish attracted to the bait at the end of the line. The moment, a contact, recognition or an acknowledgement happens there is attachment, and the greedy is caught.This is how we experience life day in day  out ever accumulating thought formations.
Images and forms comes in all manner subtle and gross, provocatting and challenging, positive and negative and mind latches on anything and everything it chooses.To become fully awaken is to become fully aware of this mental state that becomes impediments to any spiritual practice one undertakes that would hopefully lead to spiritual liberation. 
Freeing the mind from mental delusions is one of the functions of meditation practices. Unloading of the mental accumulations, or emptying the accumulated thought baggage becomes paramount in any spiritual endeavor for only through the emptying or silencing of the mind can spiritual practice become manifested with deep impact and clarity. In one of the Vipassana meditation practice there is one called, 'Ba,re Attention'. In this practice one is encouraged to experience  life with a sense of neutrality, neither attached nor detached, just observe with bare attention. This sense of neutrality or what I call detached involvement helps me from getting sucked into or sucked up by the external distractions  or attractions. This is important I feel for one who is looking within 
towards self discovery. this is why the Buddha used the analogy of living life like plucking a lotus without getting the fingers wet. Yes it is definitely easier said than done as the external world is full of lures and distractions that is bound and determined to keep the mind engaged and kept a prisoner.
The one that is making all the observations or the witness to all the ongoings of the mind is aware and awakened to a certain degree of coming to grips with reality as it is. Sadly enough most of humanity is blind to the truth of this matter and serve the 'false gods' of ignorance in perpetual bondage from generation to generation like herds of cattle existing purely to be led to the slaughterhouses at the end of their days. This is in the name of survival, achievement, success  and what have you rather than getting to know the
 truth about who you are and how or why you are on this earth and what is your position in the scheme of humanity and the planet itself. The power that be is bound and determined to keep humanity in this state of bondage blinded by the offering of simple pleasures and empty promises, dividing and disseminating falsehood and imposing their will upon the masses to implement their hidden agenda. Albeit at the National or Global level, the story is the same, greed, hate and ignorance becomes the seed sown for creating chaos and fear for personal survival.;to each his own and forget the rest.
It is our individual duty if not responsibility to awaken to the truth, the reality of our own existence, of who or what we are and how our very thought process can affect the glacial meltdown in the Arctic Circle or the deforestation of the Amazon. Yes, why we are so interdependent upon one another and the rest of the world is so crucial in our very own survival and the rest of the species; we are at the top of the food chain. It is our duty as such to get in touch with our Divine Nature and realize that we are more than what seems to be; we are of Divine essence and capable of restructuring our destiny. The Planet and Humanity needs awakened minds to aid in the healing and regenerating process that only collective consciousness can wield in order to counter the massive negative impact of toxic bombardments we and the planet is experiencing now.      
So! Wake Up! Stay Awake! Don't let them fool you!