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May 29, 2011


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Actually what was more interesting for me is that virtually every SM disciple, seems to have a persecution complex, which is embodied in those 4 questions.

The first question has an implicit assumption that everyone who challenges SM, neither has, nor is interested in finding the truth.

From there everything stems, that the SM disciple is somehow privy to the truth, whatever that is, something to do with our true selves and the true nature of reality.

Thus, all 4 questions should actually be applied to the SM disciple. Read them all carefully and virtually every SM disciple is equipped with this viewpoint, which is that they are the only ones really interested in the truth, open-minded enough to realise it, that such a thing as absolut truth can in fact be realised and that everyone who questions their particular version of the truth is out to get them or denigrate them or is narrow-minded.

Every single cult, religion or ideology has exactly these same defense mechanisms.

No disrespect to Marina, who seems like a sensitive woman, but how can anyone ever hope to get to the truth if ideas and gurus and belief systems cannot be challenged?

What if you think it could be true and that person gives you a diet and a method to practise until you prove it for yourself?

Interesting question and I personally think the answer depends on whether one is a fundamentalist. If so, whether that is fundamentalist atheist or anything else, then the answer is they are not looking for truth, are looking to confirm their beliefs and do like the argument because they are so sure they know all the answers already. A fundamentalist thinks they have heard all they need to know and nobody else can be right about it. Those who don't know the answers (I don't think there's a good title to fit them either as agnostic doesn't seem quite right but is probably closest) are still open to good points that might challenge their current set of beliefs-- and that can be political as well as spiritual.

This is particularly good for me right now as a question to bring up because I just was at Powell's (popular bookstore in Portland) for the express purpose of trying to find books that will help my granddaughter who is almost 13 and is being bombarded by christianist doctrine at her school. I wanted material for her age that would give her earlier mythologies of the resurrected king, of other stories in the Bible that were also myths before that time. It's very hard to find that for teens by the way; but it got me into the adult mythologies material which led to a lot of interesting books to buy as well as peruse while there. I am still open to changing my mind about my spiritual beliefs but every time I look, I find affirmation for what I do believe right now. That doesn't stop me now and then for looking again though and in sections of a bookstore that would challenge my ideas. I think being genuinely open that way is the only way to approach it but some would call it wishy washy, I think as they want a firm yes or no answer about life. I don't have it but I do operate on some assumptions.

Wow, the four questions came bouncing back to me good and proper when I read the new thread!

Where did they come from I ask myself? Well, it didn’t take me long to search back. The past 2 days I have downloaded, on my kindle, 2 books on sexual abuse – 2 ‘boys’ stories. After finishing the second one yesterday I found myself in a strange place which I did not like. As I thought about the two stories, especially the latter one, I found myself asking ‘how did that child survive that?’

I found myself comparing mine and thinking my experience was a picnic compared to his. Not that I was really comparing. I never heard of such abuse from been beaten, going hungry, no father much in the picture, sexually interfered with, mental torture.......I found myself asking again ‘how does a child ‘recover’ from that? The book ended when he managed to get away from the situation so I don’t know what his life is like now. Yes, I thought, there is an essence a spark that appears to me that can never be damaged, put out. But how do you uncover this essence from under all these ‘gloms’ that are added to it in one way or another?

I found myself then in a strange mood that I didn’t like. I checked in on the blog and Osho was doing his thing with Evilbuster and Evilbuster was doing his thing with Osho and apart from that I had no distraction so out of pure frustration in coming out of this place I sat and put down the four questions, very soon to cringe no sooner was it posted.

Mungos came ‘back’ at me and at that point I admit I didn’t want to be challenged so I found myself replying with the intent of saying ‘Fuck off’ leave me alone, but much too nice of a person to say the truth!

I found myself going to bed around 12 and after about 5 minutes when I heard my darling husband gently snoring, I snuck out of the bed and went out to see if Mungos had replied – getting ready for a fight I was! My last post had not yet come up so ‘I’d ‘seen’ the light and said to myself ‘Marina, will you go back to bed you EEJIT (Idiot)!!!’ So I did.

This morning when I woke up I realised what was going on for me.
When I had written about ‘Victimitis’ (thank you Osho for your video) and wrote about it on the blog, it was because it showed me that, in taking complete responsibility for myself I would be free. As I did say, there is a difference between coming from a concept of responsibility(and the forgiveness thing) and the feeling from the heart.
And in doing this, I create my own experiences.

When tAo came back to me form his perspective I was amazed that his comments didn’t bother me or annoy me or anything like that and I honestly had no ill feeling about what he wrote. But what I did was, I started questioning tAo in my head with things like I wonder why he is so upset, does he know somebody who has been abused?’

I realised it was a mixture of all these things that had disturbed me. Why? I was only seeing it from MY point of view. I wanted everyone to see it from MY perspective, what the truth was for me, I wanted my truth to be yours, and in doing that I caused a separation by holding on to my and only my expression of the picture. I get it now.

It also reminded me of how I once enjoyed being a victim and I played it well. Any time I done anything that was not approved of, people around me made excuses for me, which suited me at the time, ‘oh, its not her fault. Look at all she has been through’! Somewhere along the line I found myself wanting out – and out I got.

One thing I need to mention here and that is tAo. Yes tAo. I have to hand it to you tAo from my personal perspective, I admire your courage in using the words you do, now I may not agree with them, what I am saying is, I would be afraid to use them in case I hurt someone, or people wouldn’t like me, so again I admire you for being you.

And I thought, tAo is now going to ignore me here on the blog, not that I had a problem with that but I did think you would shun me for not agreeing with you or whatever.

Now as for your take on things Brian about not creating our own reality, I will agree to disagree (not from ‘The Secret’ point of view as I have never read anything on it) – let us use the strawberry thing?

Ok, let me explain.

I think we will all agree that a strawberry is a strawberry, just how it is. (Ok no smart comments about there being no strawberry and no one there to see a strawberry.)

Now, when I describe it from my experience, my perspective, with my expression and say it is watery and sweet and so on, I am creating my reality (concept) of a strawberry where yours may be different.

You may describe your experience of a strawberry as not sweet there is a sour taste.(obviously you didn’t get as sweet as one as mine) :)

We then argue, nicely, if we are in a polite mood as to what the truth of that strawberry is. We may, if we hold on to our own concepts tightly, we end up calling each other swear words and tell the other that they are wrong – going down the wrong path.

BUT, a strawberry is just a strawberry, nothing added or taken away. It is only when we can’t agree that everyone’s experience of that strawberry is an individual expression of that same true strawberry that we fall into difficulties and confusion.....

.......and hence, the battle of the four questions arise.

Finally, the STRAWBERRY is just that, until we add on our concepts.

Marina ;)

Perhaps it is useful to study this instrument that we use to search for the truth? That instrument is language. If you read Wittgensteins discourses on language you might agree that the meaning of what we say is defined by the way we use the words. If I say 'give me the hammer' than by the example of someone giving me the hammer I learn what this sentence mean and others.
If I say 'I search for the truth' than 'the truth' is used like 'a hammer'. But the sentence looses all meaning. I can search for a hammer but can I search for 'the truth' ? What does that sentence mean?
Could we at least agree that language is not going to show us the meaning of 'the truth' ?
If we say: 'search for the truth' = 'doing SM meditation'. Than perhaps it would be cleaner use of language to say 'do SM meditation' in stead of search the truth!
Than all Marina says is: 'are you doing SM meditation out here? Formulated in that way the answer seems obvious :)

Dear Rain,

Although not composed for "teens," the following books by David L. Dungan might be of use to you and your granddaughter:

Documents for Gospel Study. Fortress Press (Minneapolis). 1996, second revised and enlarged edition; first edition, 1994.

Sourcebook of Texts for the Comparative Study of the Gospels. Literature of the Hellenistic and Roman Period Illustrating the Milieu and Character of the Gospels. With David R. Cartlidge. 4th ed. published by the Society of Biblical Literature (Scholars Press), 1974.

Quite parallel to each other, both place in cultural context some of the stories on which "christianist doctrine" bases itself.

Robert Paul Howard

Nietzche, your comment reminded me of a Wittgenstein quotation that I just came across:

"What is left over when I subtract the fact that my arm goes up from the fact that I raise my arm?"

Not sure if this actually relates to what you're getting at. But then I'm not sure about a lot of stuff Wittgenstein says.

Ok, just to make it clear, I am not asking the questions to find out what is real for me from a point of doing RS meditation.

It is an honest, genuine question(s) on my part and yes I am remaining open and challenging any beliefs that come up. What am I doing on this site of all sites if I am not challenging beliefs? In fact this site reminds me of a rough public school. A chance to get beaten up, shuned, cussed at - metaphorically speaking of course!

Geroge wrote:"No disrespect to Marina, who seems like a sensitive woman, but how can anyone ever hope to get to the truth if ideas and gurus and belief systems cannot be challenged?

I wholeheartedly agree. Yes, for me,how CAN I ever hope to get to the truth if my ideas about RS and BJ and beliefs are not challenged. BUT also, not just RS, EVERYTHING in my life is included here.

Why does it bug me if someone says the opposite or disagrees with me? As I said somewhere in different words, if it rattles my cage, I need to know what is going on?

What am I believing or holding on to that might be a barrier to seeing the clear picture?

Work in progress........


Marina, I agree that there is a single strawberry. It can be analyzed and studied objectively. Weight, size, water content measured, etc. We agree on that.

But I took your questions as getting at a different issue: whether there also is a similarly true "us" that possesses an objective reality that's separate from our subjective experiencing of ourselves.

Who is the "true you" other than what you feel yourself truly to be? Who can determine what's true about yourself other than you? This is what I was asking in this post.

But maybe I misinterpreted you. If all you're saying is that each of us should seek our personal truth in our own way, then I heartily agree with you.

This means that religion is a roadblock to that sort of truth, not a pathway, because religion prescribes a "one size fits all" set of practices, dogmas, and such.

Look Dear Marina my intention was not to insult you or tease you and i am sorry againg cause i was like that.But i have to tell you what brought me there. I was tired of my local people especialy of some so called satsangis who everytime they want to change something about themselves they always say We have to ask ourselves or We are like that or we we we. That is why i put it out that i am individual who has his own faults and positivism and when i am ready i openly say this with me was wrong and i will do my best to work on it. That is all, Big Love to you and your dearest husband

Ah Mungos,

You make me laugh, you are funny.
And no, you didn't insult me I enjoy the craic.

I agree with you Mungos, you go from yourself and don't let anybody tell you what to do. And don't listen to me if I say 'we'. :)))

Love to you too Mungos.

Dear, dear Brian,

I am glad we have gotton the strawberry thing out of the way - and better still that we both agree!

You wrote :"Who is the "true you" other than what you feel yourself truly to be? Who can determine what's true about yourself other than you? This is what I was asking in this post.

THAT is precisely what I am after. And yes it does mean me looking at my beliefs around RS. I have been doing this for a while now.

I have no problem with RS and I think it can be a stepping stone until you can get past a lot of fears and on your feet. Well, it was that way for me. Everything has it’s place. Again I am reminded of the story in Sadhu Oms book on Ramana, about the boy and the ghost story.

I am honestly looking at the meditation part of RS. It is not appealing to me lately (ok, let’s face it, it never did because I struggled with it):))

As you say:”This means that religion is a roadblock to that sort of truth, not a pathway, because religion prescribes a "one size fits all" set of practices, dogmas, and such.

Yes, if I hang on to RS and think BJ can do it for me???? Illusions. To me BJ is a pointer.

Saying all this, I do think BJ is telling us in a way that there is only one. Referring to 19 months left and Mike on the other thread is very interesting to me. I am watching it carefully. So far 19 months has made some really good points which I am also pondering.

But I am still left questioning the meditation. I have no problem sitting ‘meditating’ on being present but as I said in an earlier post, this whole thing of meditating to try and get to some ‘region’ and having a god in that region say, ‘well done Marina, you did well. Now you can worship me’ is not doing it for me any more.

So I am left deeply questioning and pondering.


Speaking for myself, and I'm pretty sure this holds generally for churchless folk, I gave up blind faith because I wanted a clearer view of reality. My motivation for ditching dogma was to find a better path to truth, not to give up the search for it.

My Zen teacher would say that of all the buttons on a calculator, the most important is the Clear button. If you don't press that "C" and return to zero, then whatever calculation you try to do will yield the wrong result.

If we start off with a dogma (a belief we won't doubt or question), then even if we analyze rationally, our conclusions will be colored by that dogma. If we can, for a moment anyway, question everything... then we can return to zero, and from there we have a chance of seeing clearly.

So why doesn't everyone embrace doubt? Because while certainty clouds our vision, uncertainty can be so... unpleasant.

We all start out with a clean slate, but as children, we can hardly prevent developing a blind belief in what our parents tell us. As we mature, we learn to question these childhood dogmas. When the doubt becomes too uncomfortable, we grab onto some replacement dogma: religious, political, whatever.

It seems to me that this process is generally repeated. We become churchless by doubting one set of beliefs. Our motivation may be the recognition that clinging to those beliefs prevent a clear view of the world. At that point, there's nothing stopping us from trading one dogma for a new one. The new beliefs will be less blatant, more subtle... but if we're holding any unexamined beliefs, our inner calculators will produce skewed answers.

Surely, sometimes we leave aside a dogma with the intention of clearing the calculator, and in fact the leaving-aside brings us to clarity/zero (or at least close to it). And at other times, we end up (intentionally or otherwise) discarding one dogma, and adopting a new one just as rigidly.

Maybe that means that it's not sufficient to question and reject a dogma, then rest on our laurels. Maybe clarity is reached by continuously questioning what we still believe in now, and repeating that questioning over and over, with each new "certainty" that arises.


Brian, the quotation is related to the subject. W. talks about certainties their and gives examples of things that we think we are certain of. Than later he argues that our certainties always rely on some arbitrarily assumptions that cannot be proven from within the system. This is related because 'the truth' relies on things we know that are truth. It turns out that 'the truth' relies on assumptions that we can not proof. So yes everything is a believe system or a dogma. But there is no problem in calling something 'truth' as this word is part of a language game and we all understand it.
That seems a contradiction but it is best understood by reading a biography about W. do not try to read W. himself in the first place!

In my former post I tried to philosophical argue that speaking about 'the truth' is a trick used by people to inflate their message. There is no relation to their 'truth' and the logical proposition that something is truth. In the past philosophers have inflated the 'truth' proposition to include nonsense. 'The truth' appeals to a certain feeling nowadays that makes the listeners listen in awe :)

The real truth for me????

It boils down for me that what I want is to be happy, not happiness based on conditions or situations, but happiness with whatever is in front of me right NOW. I want to know the truth of reality without programming....

I want to look at things as they arise - if I feel judgemental or blame towards someone, I want to take it back to myself and see what is going on with ME. It usually is about wanting someone/thing to be different and not taking complete responsibility for how I feel or act.

I want to live in the moment, not dismissing what I am doing in order to get/be somewhere else. Not giving things more importance than others.

I want to be responsible for me.

I want a break...... I am fed up with it all. Yeah, and I am happy enough being fed up.

That's the best I can come up with this minute.....



You said,

"I want to know the truth of reality without programming...."

--How would you define:
1. truth
2. reality

prepare a defintion.

--What is this programming, you mentioned?
Explain what it is, that would be absolute non-programming.

With all the exact explanations and definitions, how will we ever absolutely 'know' what you are honestly/sincerely wanting?

Best wishes, Roger

Well Roger,

when I say I want to know 'truth/reality, I did 'try' to explain in the latter following lines in my comment you are referring to.

However, it will do no good to you 'my explanations' on any of this and it doesn't really matter if you even DO ever get to "absolutely 'know' what I am honestly/sincerely wanting?"

It will still be all concepts of 'my experience'.

Better looking for your own;))


Hi Marina,

If you just want to be happy why don't smoke pot all day? :) There are other substances like alcohol or more heavy drugs available too.

But I guess you want to be happy without any illegal or dangerous substances. Eternal bliss from the guru?

What would life be like being happy every day, I think it would be boring :( Why get food, I am happy. Why bother about anyone else, I am happy.

My personal opinion is that being happy is a by-effect of living a meaningful life and finding a meaning in my life makes me happy some times but more often I follow the meaning even when I'm unhappy, it simple isn't that important to me to be happy all the time if I can find my suffering meaningful. My point is that not happiness is the goal but we should find something that transcends our own feelings to achieve it. No ? :)

Nietzsche i kind of agree with you cause sometimes i feel that some people are happy by doing bad to others so what is than happy. I also want to feel my life in full and try to find content. And by that i am happy and yes maybe is a side effect i guess. And Nietzsche i post for you this post:

Mungos, thanks, I've read the post and was thinking about it. I also found an old post from Brian on the Omega 3 subject that I see as a huge weakness of vegetarianism. Especially because there are studies that show that vis oil is essential in not developing some diseases that go with genetical weakness like alzheimer and even schizophrenia. But Brian gave a vegetarian alternative and I ordered the v-pure :)

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