Awareness — Renunciation Isn’t The Solution

I’ve been off DeMello for a bit, so I thought I would continue:

Neither Is Renunciation The Solution

Anytime you’re practicing renunciation, you’re deluded. How about that! You’re deluded. What are you renouncing? Anytime you renounce something, you are tied forever to the thing you renounce. There’s a guru in India who says, “Every time a prostitute comes to me, she’s talking about nothing but God. She says I’m sick of this life that I’m living. I want God. But every time a priest comes to me he’s talking about nothing but sex.”

Very well, when you renounce something, you’re stuck to it forever. When you fight something, you’re tied to it forever. As long as you’re fighting it, you are giving it power. You give it as much power as you are using to fight it.

This includes communism and everything else. So you must “receive” your demons, because when you fight them, you empower them. Has nobody ever told you this? When you renounce something, you’re tied to it. The only way to get out of this is to see through it. Don’t renounce it, see through it. Understand its true value and you won’t need to renounce it; it will just drop from your hands.

But of course, if you don’t see that, if you’re hypnotized into thinking that you won’t be happy without this, that, or the other thing, you’re stuck. What we need to do for you is not what so-called spirituality attempts to do — namely, to get you to make sacrifices, to renounce things. That’s useless. You’re still asleep. What we need to do is to help you understand, understand, understand.

If you understood, you’d simply drop the desire for it. This is another way of saying: If you woke up, you’d simply drop the desire for it.

I actually had an extended discussion on this topic in the last couple weeks. My teacher from my undergraduate days, and a person who has had an amazing effect on my life, has been seeing her health degenerate in recent years in no small part because she is overweight.

It is strange for me to have a person who I respect deeply for her moral turpitude simply fail to learn the basics of good nutrition and change her eating habits.

I went back to Cookeville to help decorate her house and after being there I was discussing with some other people who knew her how it was that she didn’t simply change her diet. The responses that I got were largely that it was unfair for me to simply expect her to change. That food can be an addiction and that everyone has their failings.

Which is fine and perfectly reasonable, but it is not what DeMello claims with, “if you woke up, you’d simply drop the desire for it.”

There’s no quibbling in that statement about circumstances or things being hard or anything else. You simply do or do not do what you want to do. No one and nothing else is responsible for your actions but yourself.

I actually do think that DeMello is right. I think that when you get to a point that you own up to living each and every moment of your life the best that you can that you don’t do things that you disagree with. Why would you consciously choose to do something that is out of line with your core values?

Well, I understand why people do. For the same reason I do, reason suggests that if I want the future to turn out a certain way then I need to do such and such distasteful thing to try and make that happen. My fleeting experiences with awakening suggest that for an aware person either such and such action is seen as needful and isn’t distasteful, or it is simply not done.

The end result is you either see why you want to do something or you don’t do it. The mystics’ suggestion of “follow your bliss” becomes a simple single rule to order your decisions.

I had a talk with my adviser last week and after February I’m off my research assistantship. I’ll leave Nashville and start working full time on the Ideapool project. It’s a solution that satisfies me as both fulfilling the commitment that I made in agreeing to work on my adviser’s research and fulfilling my recognition that I really don’t enjoy being a graduate student and think my time could be better spent.

Part of me just wants to quit and walk out, but the larger picture of who I am is someone who seeks their dreams, but also pays attention to his affect on the lives around him. I can’t leave my adviser in the lurch and maintain that picture of myself, so what I really want, from the largest picture I can see, is to help transition this project to a new developer and then hit the road.

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