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Daniel A. Detwiler

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Status Replies posted by Daniel A. Detwiler

  1. Hi Gillian and forum members,  I did pause and reflect more on Adveita Vedanta and Swami S. Just recently I watched a few more of his youtube videos. There is no doubt about it, I like everything about this good Monk. He has a beautiful heart, a masterful intellect and a good sense of humor. That is not going to change. However, as I listened more I did learn that Swami S. and those in his branch of Adveita Vedanta believe in reincarnation. I uphold their right to that belief but it just doesn't work for me. Also, despite all of his presentations, the question i always have remains unanswered:  if we are the thoughts of the Brahman/Atman/God and the way that being gets to know something about itself, what do we thoughts get out of this? Apparently, when we realize we are part of god we become enlightened and get to live in peace and happiness. That is at least some kind of payoff. Actually, the outcome of Enlightenment for the Buddha had that same kind of impact plus it ended his reincarnations. I am not yet sure if they are thought to end with Enlightment for Adveita Vedanta believers. Buddhism and Adveita Vedanta are beautiful and offer many practices to enrich life. I suspect I am going to enjoy their understandings, use the practices and persist with my own ideas and hopefully develop them more. Daniel

    1. Daniel A. Detwiler

      Daniel A. Detwiler

      Thanks Gillian. Outer space captures the darkness I am describing. I really appreciate that you shared that and also that you see some darkness without it signifying something unpleasant. When I thought about what I wrote I recalled something from my earlier experiences with hypnosis. I am comfortable being hypnotized and had a positive experience with being in that state for stress relief and to diminish anxiety. When I use a simple kind of self-hypnosis, (think heightened self relaxation with positive suggestions) I see a variety of colors. Purple comes after darkness and feels restorative. Then green, which feels like hope. Next, a vivid or electric yellow green that feels vivifying. Finally, with eyes closed and facing the light in a room or outside I see a deep, thick ruby red. Somehow, that one really brings a sense of wholeness and joy to my body and mind and feels like love. I don't always go through them in that order and sometimes it is only one color but I welcome and respect them all. To me they are indicators of being and states of being, each with their own message. I respect all of them. Daniel

    2. (See 4 other replies to this status update)

  2. Hi Gillian and forum members,  I did pause and reflect more on Adveita Vedanta and Swami S. Just recently I watched a few more of his youtube videos. There is no doubt about it, I like everything about this good Monk. He has a beautiful heart, a masterful intellect and a good sense of humor. That is not going to change. However, as I listened more I did learn that Swami S. and those in his branch of Adveita Vedanta believe in reincarnation. I uphold their right to that belief but it just doesn't work for me. Also, despite all of his presentations, the question i always have remains unanswered:  if we are the thoughts of the Brahman/Atman/God and the way that being gets to know something about itself, what do we thoughts get out of this? Apparently, when we realize we are part of god we become enlightened and get to live in peace and happiness. That is at least some kind of payoff. Actually, the outcome of Enlightenment for the Buddha had that same kind of impact plus it ended his reincarnations. I am not yet sure if they are thought to end with Enlightment for Adveita Vedanta believers. Buddhism and Adveita Vedanta are beautiful and offer many practices to enrich life. I suspect I am going to enjoy their understandings, use the practices and persist with my own ideas and hopefully develop them more. Daniel

    1. Daniel A. Detwiler

      Daniel A. Detwiler

      Hi Gillian, I very much enjoyed this talk by Alan Watts. I like it better than seeing him in the dated black and white film I have watched from old television presentations. His voice and words are wonderful. One comment:  for brief moments during meditation, I see darkness, then dark gray and black clouds. In those moments, I am free of thoughts and inevitably I give a big sigh of what can only be relief. I know enough not to pursue those moments of nowness. I just let them be. However, when they arrive I welcome them as my body shows me. The "thatness" he talks about, is known to Buddhists and Swamis. I believe "that" is consciousness. I do try to just let thoughts come and go without clinging or aversion. When successful, the darkness and clouds appear. I understand that it is counterintuitive to welcome darkness rather than light. However, this just happens. There is no fear. Just a freeing relief.   My best wishes to you and your family. Daniel

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  3. Hi Gillian,  During an interview of Rupert Spira, Depak Chopra mentioned the Advaita Vedenta on which Rupert's work is based. I found a 6 part series on you tube explaining those concepts. After the first one, I could understand the basic concept that Rupert is using and the mode of teaching he uses. The Swami, an older American man, said that the self inquiry is the method of learning recommended by the ":Rishies" either the people who wrote these ideas or the writtem ideas themselves, who or which developed these ideas. The Swami is a plain spoken man and I found it fairly easy to follow him. I suspect he will outline more about the relationship between the divine self as he calls it, and the individual person. It is both similar to and different from some Buddhist ideas. I am going to watch them all. Daniel

    1. Daniel A. Detwiler

      Daniel A. Detwiler

      Hi Gillian,I  The series was videoed six years ago. The title is "Discovering the Source of Happiness" produced by Arsha Bodha Center in Somerset, NJ. The Swami is Tadatmananda. I really loved this presentation. Bottom line for me, I think I understand the overall concept. Consciousness exists before all. Consciousness created all that is including the natural laws, matter and energy as well as space and time. For me the next part is critical:  there is no reason given for this creation. For an independent thinker that is really a bummer. However, I do like the explanation for the existence of all we experience in the material world. Everything is made of consciousness. The Swami explains that just like we dream, from our consiousness and to us it is real, Consciousness begets us as part of itself. I think it means we are all in the dream of consciousness. And,  as consciousness created us it will destroy us and restsart the cyclical process over and over again.  That is my take on this. It is disconcerting in one sense and oddly, reassuring to me in another. It appears consciousness dreamed us to have free will and make our own decisions and have our own awarenesses; that is just part of what it created us to have. So, we are free until the "Big End". We are supposed to be happy to learn this and to feel loved by consciousness. Sometimes that feels okay; sometimes it feels like we are a science experiment.  In college in the 60's my psychology professor quoted Sir James Jeans(sp?) who said "in the final analysis, were are all just an idea in the mind of God". He was a physicist. I think that is pretty close to what the Advaita Vedanta and its modern interpreter, Rupert Spira are saying. Daniel

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  4. The question I am responding to is what season describes me and my life.  At age 73 I wo uld say Autumn.  That season is often warm, sunny and filled with blue skies. The leaves which turn color here in Illinois are always beautiful. They have an earthy smell when piled up and a nice curnch when you walk on them. Later, the month grows colder. There are days which darken sooner and things turn colder towards winter. Indoor activities heighten with warm good, cider and mulled wine shared with friends. My life is in the stage of Autumn. I have plenty of good and warm relationships. Walking in the park on warm days is wonderful. I watch my grandson play flag football and marvel at his coordination and his height which surpasses mine. My granddaughter and her girl scout Troop is readying for the annual Scare Crow contest during the pumpkin fest at the arboretum.  Her dancing classes yield a more lovely and strong young woman. They are my harvest. As Khalil Gibran says " they live in the house of the future which you can't visit even in your dreams". They will reach it however, and carry me in their hearts with them. My spiritual growth continues. After growing up Christian their is room in my life for the Buddha, his ethics and practices which enhance my understanding of Christianity. Mindfulness helps me recognize that my energy is part of the vast existence of Consciousness which is known in loving presence. I lived a life of helping others. I didn't do things perfectly but I did things mostly well. While my wife and I have a lot to liive for and to experience I feel some increasing readiness for peace and I mean the final peace. When my time is over, I suspect I will welcome whatever happens or doesn't afterward. Daniel

    1. Daniel A. Detwiler

      Daniel A. Detwiler

      Please feel free to share it on the seasons thread. Thank you for your lovely comment. 

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  5. Hi Jillian, I was concerned for the predicamente Sean found himself in. May I ask if he proceeded with the live stream and if so, how? 

    1. Daniel A. Detwiler

      Daniel A. Detwiler

      Is the september 2nd comment from Sean the last information we have? Daniel

    2. (See 3 other replies to this status update)

  6. Hi Jillian, I was concerned for the predicamente Sean found himself in. May I ask if he proceeded with the live stream and if so, how? 

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