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soma

Different Paths Leading To Same End

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Great ideas don't come from small-minded men; they first come from the higher deeper layers of the mind before they are established in the first and second layers. When we reflect on unity in the higher layers, we get acquainted with different spiritual aspirations and endeavors realizing that there are different upward paths in a variety of religions. As we climb and scale the mind from the lower layers to the higher layers the differences in traditional religions diminish because all paths that ascend lead to God's pure consciousness. Evolution of knowledge comes from inside and then is built into the life outside in a life of love and unity.

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There is a principle which is pure, placed in the human mind, which in different places and ages hath had different names. It is, however, pure and proceeds from God. It is deep and inward, confined to no forms of religion nor excluded from any, where the heart stands in perfect sincerity. In whomsoever this takes root and grows, of what nation soever they become brethren in the best sense of the expression.--- John Woolman, Quaker

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Russ, nice quote. One moment of ectasy in the silence of the source erases a life of doubt. Thanks for the quote.

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I am a member of a Quaker meeting that practices the tradition of the silent worship meeting. During the meeting, I practice contemplative meditation (falling asleep is always a danger with me while doing this) and experienced one such 'opening'. In my inner vision, I stood in the blackness on the edge of a black cube in space gazing out into a field of distant stars and could feel the depth of infinity. This 'one moment' was a connection between the Deep without and the Deep within...Deep seeking Deep. I have no doubt.

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I am a member of a Quaker meeting that practices the tradition of the silent worship meeting. During the meeting, I practice contemplative meditation (falling asleep is always a danger with me while doing this) and experienced one such 'opening'. In my inner vision, I stood in the blackness on the edge of a black cube in space gazing out into a field of distant stars and could feel the depth of infinity. This 'one moment' was a connection between the Deep without and the Deep within...Deep seeking Deep. I have no doubt.

 

All I can say is, wow. :)

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I like the Quaker service and their silence, it is very profound. Speaking from the silence, meditation is very close to the state of sleep that is why a straight back and not horrizontal position helps. At one time I was in charge of many monks group meditation. We meditated four times a day.and one young monk kept falling asleep. My teacher kept me from correcting his behavior saying he was advanced just missing the mark. Now, in my advanced years, I see no difference between sleep and awake. Yongananda said, " I went to sleep and dreamt I was a butterfly and when I awoke I felt I was a butterfly dreaming I was a man.

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From some of my Taoist friends....

 

A mountain could look completely different when viewed from the base at the East or the West. It might be a menacing and dangerous climb from the East, and a gentle stroll on a forest trail from the West. But climbers from all directions see the same view from the peak.

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A common idea that I have run across from highly realized practioners from various traditions is this -

 

Yes, when we get closer to the Source, particularly in contemplative exercises descreasing our false self and increasing our direct understanding of our true nature, the descriptions of the experiences of the saints, mystics, and deeply holy women and men start sounding similar and in some cases virtually identical. However, in order to "get there", one must be firmly rooted in a particular tradition and method, which ironically then allows for a greater genuine appreciation of and sharing with other traditions the deeper you go. Some useful analogies include starting to dig a well in one spot, then stopping and starting somewhere else, so that after a long time and a lot of effort you end up with several shallow pits but are still no closer to reaching the water. Or more on point, there may be many paths to the same truth, but you can't walk them all at once.

 

Just a thought...

 

:)

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tinythinker, good point, the more one walks a path the easier it is to find the way.

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