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Posts Tagged ‘want’

Invisibility

Posted by Amanda Gray on August 6, 2015

I’ve been invisible.  It’s not as cool as you might think; like Harry Potter and his Cloak of Invisibility, sneaking around, spying on secret conversations.  No, it’s not like that.

First of all, I don’t know when I’ve gone invisible.  Everything is normal in my experience.  I only know I’m invisible through the consequences of not being seen by others. Like, for example, nearly getting run over in the middle of the street.  And, before you ask, no, it’s not like the driver was just distracted.  I have observed cars driving by me, with multiple occupants, none of whom were seeing me – and literally, looking beyond me – as if I wasn’t there.  It’s pretty unmistakable, and I’ve encountered it more than once.  There was a period of time, in fact, where it was happening rather regularly.  Until I decided I didn’t like almost being killed in the street, and then those particular occurrences stopped.

I bring this up today because I’m seeing a common thread of this ‘invisibility’ issue in my consciousness.  Fifteen years ago, just before I started on my spiritual journey, I had been a mad seeker of fame.  A sudden epiphany led me to realize that this seeking was due to feeling invisible and needing others, not just 1 or 2 others, but the whole world of others to pay attention to me, to recognize me as being special.  I thought that when I was famous, I would feel special, and therefore, loved.  I’ve had many years now to look at this prior seeking behaviour, and I thought I was done with it.

Bond_Faceless_ProfileYet, now I see it’s come up again, in a seemingly different way.  In the past couple of months, I’ve become completely, obsessively, boy crazy!  It started with a surge of desire, perhaps energy in the root chakra that I was rejecting over the past 10 years that I’ve been practicing celibacy, but, whatever the case, it came on in such a torrent, that I couldn’t resist it.  I decided not to judge the desire, and went with it.  The desire wanted sex, so I went after sex.  There was a fellow at work, who I fixated upon at first, but when it became apparent that he was in a sound relationship, I joined the dating app, Tinder.  I chatted with a few guys, went on a few dates.  While my intentions were clearly sexual, I didn’t feel right about the ‘hook up’ thing.  When sex was offered too quickly, I rejected it.  Anyway, two months later, several first dates, a smattering of second dates, and joining a second dating app, OKCupid, alas, I’ve still not found the right person/moment to have sex.  The desires have diminished somewhat over that time.  I’m still interested, but it’s not as overwhelming as it was at first.  Now, I can take or or leave it.  Yet, I’m still boy crazy – ogling cute boys everywhere I go and flirting aggressively anytime I catch an eye.  I want their attention so badly, I’m like a wounded beast on fire, begging them to help me, “Please, put out my flames!”

And yet, they don’t… won’t… can’t.  There’s been interest from many corners of the Tinder-verse and OKC-land, but the interest seems to fade fast.  Young men who express interest in an ‘older woman’ cancel our first dates, or stand me up (and by young, I mean 25).  Men closer to my age drift before we get to a second date. By ‘drift’, I mean that I assume they’re finding someone younger and cuter, although actual feedback, when I’ve asked, assures me they’re still interested.  Perhaps interested enough to keep me hanging on as ‘backup’ but not interested enough to become more involved.  Whatever the case, I’m clearly not getting what I want, so I have to ask why that is.  Is my overweening desire blocking the actual fulfilment of it?

I recognize that my activities have been motivated by some crazy ego thing.  I was thinking that I was addicted to the attention – the attempt at specialness through the ‘getting’ of a boyfriend.  Yeah, that’s probably in there.  But today, I also realized that there’s a tremendous amount of fear behind this seeking.  What am I afraid of?  Well, I feel lonely.  So I’m afraid of being alone.  When no one is paying attention to me, I feel alone, empty.  The feeling of loneliness is like a burning in my heart – sooooo uncomfortable – so I make any attempt I can to distract myself and avoid it!  There’s a feeling of ‘desperation’ in there too.  For example, I’m desperately grasping for the attention of anyone who passes by my desk at work.  If these people don’t stop to talk to me, then what?  Why is that a problem?  Could it be that I’m desperate for them to SEE ME?  What if it’s, literally, that I need them to SEE ME, because I still fear being ‘invisible’?

A Course in Miracles says that the body doesn’t truly exist in the moment, it’s only ever an image that’s remembered or projected.  It only exists in the past or the future, and requires a belief in time  to extend or manufacture it.  So, I have to be telling myself some kind of story about it, believing the body and it’s story is useful to me in some manner.  Yeah, to attract a boy (really, don’t get me wrong, I mean a MAN, of course) and have SEX before I’m too old and nobody wants me anymore!  I have to say, it’s not entirely about sex either, I’m also VERY interested in CUDDLES.  Some men have offered cuddles and THAT, for whatever reason, completely blows a gasket in my brain-basket!  I WANT CUDDLES!!!  I’ve gotten some cuddles, on a few EPIC first dates, and some lovely kisses, but there’s never ENOUGH – and I WANT MORE!!  ARGHHHHH!!  And, there’s also love.  Where does love fit into this?  I want to give and receive love.  UNCONDITIONAL LOVE.

Anyway, it’s all very curious, and, as usual, I don’t have any answers.  It’ll bother me until I let go of the attachments, and then it won’t.  Eventually, I’ll see through whatever bullshit is making me a crazy, obsessive monster.  Such is the way.

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I am Here Only to be Truly Helpful

Posted by Amanda Gray on March 9, 2012

A Course in Miracles

Thus begins a prayer from A Course in Miracles, in the Text on page 28.  I’ve been considering this phrase a lot recently.  What does it mean to be TRULY helpful?

 A few days ago, I travelled to the city with my mom.  When we arrived, I dropped her off to spend the night with her sister, while I went to stay the night with friends from my meditation group.  The next morning, I arose early and picked up mom to take her to three appointments.  At first, I thought I would be early enough to grab a quick chai latte, but an unexpected traffic jam delayed me.  Then, I was angry that we had to crisscross half the city to go from one appointment to another, in no reasonable sense of driving order.  Also, it was snowing and the road conditions were less than optimal.  Grrr.  Well, from there, the whole day just spiraled down into more feelings of anger, arrogance and blaming.  I could observe what was happening, and I took responsibility for it, apologizing to my mom several times, but I couldn’t seem to shake the negative attitude either.  The verbal attacks that sprouted from my mouth like a bunch of thorny weeds – aimed at, pretty much, any excuse I could concoct – felt like it was completely out of my control.
 

As I thought about the day later on, I wondered why I hadn’t remembered some lessons from the Course, designed for these very situations.  I could have used, “I am not upset for the reason that I think“, or “I do not know what anything, including this, means“, or, failing to recall precise lessons, I could still have just stopped and prayed at any point.  Any words would have been fine, but I didn’t do it.  Instead, I let the negativity grow and grow, until I sucked my mom into its insidious gravity so we were both in bad moods, and then I juiced the situation for every drop of dark satisfaction I could get.  The bottom line is that I WANTED to juice that negative energy.  But WHY???

It was really hard for me to understand the underlying motivation of it, so I used a technique that Adyashanti recommends: to talk to the anger.  Anger said that it didn’t want to do things it didn’t want to do.  It didn’t really want to help my mom.  It was too much trouble to do all that driving, especially when there was nothing in it for ME.  Anger only wanted what benefited its own selfish little self!

So, somewhere along the line that day, I went into resistance about helping my mom, and then I couldn’t help but operate out of the internal conflict.  That’s why it felt so “out of control”.  Resistance occurs when we’re doing something we don’t really want to do – or not doing something we really do want to do.  Doo-doo-de-doo, de-doo-de-doo-doo.  If I would’ve just been honest with myself, as rude and embarrassing as it is to admit the truth, the whole negative condition would’ve melted away.  If I would’ve allowed myself to feel how I felt, been OK with it, then I could have made an active and free CHOICE to help my mom anyway.  At that point, feeling fully engaged and positive about the choice I was making from an honest place of power.

This morning, while I was doing the dishes, thoughts of complaint and blame arose again.  Right away, instead of trying to ‘figure out’ why I’m so bitchy about dirty dishes, I just surrendered and asked spirit to see it differently.  I admitted that I truly didn’t know why the dirty dish conflict kept rising in my mind, and I dropped the whole problem into silence.  And, from silence, the answer came.  I could see that it was the same issue as the travel day with my mom.  Oh, for Pete’s sake!  For so long, I danced around the issue because I didn’t really want to see the truth.  It’s not just about being frustrated at chaos – although that may be part of how I was perceiving it – it’s more about being selfish.  It’s hard to admit to being THAT selfish.  After all the things my mom does for me, totally unconditionally, why don’t I have the same generosity toward her?  No, my helpfulness definitely comes with conditions.

I was watching Nadia G’s Bitchin’ Kitchen yesterday (she’s like a female Andrew Dice Clay and she kills me!) and she said that she’s an only child and that she’s grown up used to doing everything she wants for herself.  Yup.  Me too.  She made me laugh about it, which was good, so today I can look at this monumentally selfish beast that I have been and I can forgive myself. 

The truth is that I don’t know how to be unconditionally helpful.  I don’t know how to do things for others without expecting a quid pro quo…

… BUT I AM WILLING TO ASK FOR HELP.

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The Truth in Dribs and Drabs

Posted by Amanda Gray on June 12, 2011

I have been so deceived. And what a mighty deception it has been. Truly, a whopper. I honestly thought I was here in the world to do something. I had successfully turned away from the illusion that I was here to buy something, but it has been many, many years that I have been held in the sway of this other false premise – to DO.

I have seen people, like Yo-yo Ma, for example, who seem to have something to do in the world. He gets up every day and plays the cello. He doesn’t change his mind about playing the cello. He doesn’t wake up suddenly one day and decide to play the flute instead. He’s put a lot of time, effort and commitment into this ONE thing. As far as I can see, he really wants to play the cello, all the time! He plays, and many other people enjoy his talent and his passion for music. It seems to be his singular great calling. I have seen other people who decide to become doctors. They complete numerous years of schooling, many more years of internship, and years and years after that of their own practice – and they never seem to change their minds about it. That doctor is purely committed to that ONE thing. So it seems reasonable to think that I, also, should have ONE thing that is purely my thing – my calling – to do in this world.

I have looked for that thing, high and low. Looked and looked, but nothing seemed quite right. I have never felt able to make a solid commitment – to any type of career, or to any particular way of life, or to any one person. Perhaps, it’s more accurate to say that I’ve been commitment phobic. I change my mind regularly, and make frequent psycho switches into vastly contrary fields of work. I have never married or had children. Yes, exactly – those would be FAR too great a commitment! What have I been truly interested in? Spirituality. So, perhaps, I should be a great teacher, or a healer, or a poet, or… well, there must be something God wants me to DO here.

Over the past few days, I’ve been watching a number of David Hoffmeister videos on YouTube. In one, he talks about how the Course in Miracles describes the world. He says that the world was made as an “attack on God.” Yes, I’ve read this in the Course too, but I didn’t believe it. Even a few posts ago, in Whisper the Words I Don’t Want to Tell, I wrote about the Course lesson to “give up the world,” and I expressed that I couldn’t quite believe that one either. David goes on to say, in this video, that it’s the ego’s job to keep us thinking that we’re in the world to DO something. Do, do, do – and maybe someday I’ll DO enough to be worthy. Someday, I’ll be like Yo-yo Ma. Someday, I’ll be like Mother Teresa. Sure, I’ve tried. I’ve tried, at least, 3 billion times. Yet, you know that deep feeling, the one that we all seem to have, but tend to ignore and repress, that there’s something’s fishy going on here? THAT feeling is the one that’s TRUE! Just like George Harrison sings in a song called “Fish on the Sand.” YES, YES, YES, it’s TRUE! Don’t ignore that feeling! David corroborates it in his video: YES, we ARE fish on the sand! God did NOT send me here to DO something. God didn’t SEND me here at ALL. Remember what I wrote in my last post, A Night at the Improv? I DID IT TO MYSELF. I have suffered in this world because I thought there was something I wanted here. I WAS WRONG.

There is, truly, NOTHING in this illusion that I want. I can stop searching now. I can stop endlessly DOing. I don’t have to do something to make myself worthy. I’m worthy of love/truth/God NOW. I don’t have to be a better person, or more self-less, or flagellate myself with guilt. Truth is already whole and I don’t need to make the ego good enough to get it. The ego can’t get it at all, in fact. It would try to possess something that can’t be possessed. Even what I was reading in the Course yesterday was about how the ego keeps trying to find truth in the illusion – but it will always fail. And that’s exactly what my experience of the world has always been: that I’m a failure. Yet, in truth, I’ve failed at NOTHING. I never wanted anything in the illusion anyway.

It’s taken a very long time for this truth to sink in. Like a butterfly, I’ve lightly landed upon these thoughts, only to float away with a breeze of forgetfulness again. This time, maybe, I really got it. Perhaps this time, I fully understand why I can’t commit to anything in the world. It’s because deep down, I KNOW that what I want isn’t out there. I know that if I commit to something in the illusion, I’ll only LOSE everything I really want.

ALL I WANT IS THE TRUTH. Not truth in dribs and drabs. Not inspiration like it’s being squeezed out of a toothpaste tube. I want ALL of truth. The truth that can’t be broken into degrees. Do I want 10% of truth? 50% of truth? I clearly don’t want anything more of the illusion, where everything is a matter of degree. How often have I wanted more time? In that desire, I put truth on hold, and have lost the truth of infinite time. How often have I wanted more square footage? With that desire, I lost the truth of infinite space. How often have I desired peace and freedom, looking first to the world to find them? I suspended real peace and freedom while I searched for them in the wrong place! How often have I desired to DO something within this illusion and so lost the infinity of my true BEING?

Thus, my interest in the world has waned, and then waned some more. It’s been a gradual decline… first, I stopped wanting to go to work and to go out to big social events. Now I’ve stopped wanting to go out for walks in nature, or read my spiritual books, or watch TV. So, I’m losing interest even in enjoyable activity. Some might say I’m becoming depressed or agoraphobic. I’ve been clinically depressed, so I know it’s not that. I doubt it’s agoraphobia. I think I’m just getting what I’ve actually always wanted. All my worldly desires are being packed up and shipped to Never Never Land. I’m about to be totally and perfectly successful! Whew!  Finally!!  Mine eye is single, upon one thing only: TRUTH.

So mote it be. Amen.

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