"The Student shall always surpass the Master, unless, the Master is always a Student."
Carlos Castaneda's Don Juan's Teachings
|The art of a warrior is to balance the terror of being a man with the wonder of being a man.|
The Wheel of Time
I am going to teach you the secrets that make up the lot of a man of knowledge. You will have to make a very deep commitment because the training is long and arduous. A man goes to knowledge as he goes to war, wide awake, with fear, with respect, and with absolute assurance.
Going to knowledge or going to war in any other manner is a mistake, and whoever makes
it will live to regret his steps.
When a man has fulfilled those four requisites there are no mistakes for which he will have to account; under such conditions his acts lose the blundering quality of a fool's acts. If such a man fails, or suffers a defeat, he will have lost only a battle, and there will be no pitiful regrets over that.
When a man starts to learn, he is never clear about his objectives. His purpose is faulty; his intent is vague.(1) He hopes for rewards that will never materialize for he knows nothing of the
* * *
A man of knowledge is one who has followed truthfully the hardships of learning, a man who has, without rushing or without faltering, gone as far as he can in unraveling the secrets of power and knowledge. To become a man of knowledge one must challenge and
defeat his four natural enemies.
hardships of learning.
He slowly begins to learn--bit by bit at first, then in big chunks. And his thoughts soon clash. What he learns is never what he pictured, or imagined, and so he begins to be afraid. Learning is never what one expects.
Every step of learning is a new task, and the fear the man is experiencing begins to mount mercilessly, unyieldingly. His purpose becomes a battlefield. And thus he has stumbled upon the first of his natural enemies: fear!
A terrible enemy--treacherous, and difficult to overcome. It remains concealed at every turn of the way, prowling, waiting. And if the man, terrified in its presence, runs away, his enemy will have put an end to his quest and he will never learn. He will never become a man of knowledge. He will perhaps be a bully, or a harmless, scared man; at any rate, he will be a defeated man. His first enemy will have put an end to his cravings. It is not possible for a man to abandon himself to fear for years, then finally conquer it. If he gives in to fear he will never
conquer it, because he will shy away from learning and never try again.
But if he tries to learn for years in the midst of his fear, he will eventually conquer it because he will never have really abandoned himself to it. Therefore he must not run away. He must defy his fear, and in spite of it he must take the next step in learning, and the next, and the next.
He must be fully afraid, and yet he must not stop. That is the rule! And a moment will come when his first enemy retreats. The man begins to feel sure of himself. His intent becomes stronger. Learning is no longer a terrifying task. When this joyful moment comes, the man can say without hesitation that he has defeated his first natural enemy. It happens little by little, and yet the fear is vanquished suddenly and fast.
Once a man has vanquished fear, he is free from it for the rest of his life because, instead of fear, he has acquired clarity--a clarity of mind which erases fear. By then a man knows his desires; he knows how to satisfy those desires. He can anticipate the new steps of learning and a sharp clarity surrounds everything. The man feels that nothing is concealed.
And thus he has encountered his second enemy: Clarity! That clarity of mind, which is so hard to obtain, dispels fear, but also blinds. It forces the man never to doubt himself. It gives him the assurance he can do anything he pleases, for he sees clearly into everything. And he is courageous because he is clear, and he stops at nothing because he is clear. But all that is a mistake; it is like something incomplete.
If the man yields to this make-believe power, he has succumbed to his second enemy and will be patient when he should rush. And he will fumble with learning until he winds up incapable of learning anything more. His second enemy has just stopped him cold from trying to become a man of knowledge. Instead, the man may turn into a buoyant warrior, or a clown. Yet the clarity for which he has paid so dearly will never change to darkness and fear again. He will be clear as long as he lives, but he will no longer learn, or yearn for, anything. He must do what he did with fear: he must defy his clarity and use it only to see, and wait patiently and measure carefully before taking new steps; he must think, above all, that his clarity is almost a mistake.
And a moment will come when he will understand that his clarity was only a point before his eyes. And thus he will have overcome his second enemy, and will arrive at a position where nothing can harm him anymore.
This will not be a mistake. It will not be only a point before his eyes. It will be true power.He will know at this point that the power he has been pursuing for so long is finally his. He can do with it whatever he pleases. His ally is at his command. His wish is the rule. He sees all that is around him. But he has also come across his third enemy: Power! Power is the strongest of all enemies. And naturally the easiest thing to do is to give in; after all, the man is truly invincible. He commands; he begins by taking calculated risks, andends in making rules, because he is a master.
A man at this stage hardly notices his third enemy closing in on him. And suddenly, without knowing, he will certainly have lost the battle. His enemy will have turned him into a cruel, capricious man, but he will never lose his clarity or his power.
A man who is defeated by power dies without really knowing how to handle it. Power is only a burden upon his fate. Such a man has no command over himself, and cannot tell when or how to use his power.
Once one of these enemies overpowers a man there is nothing he can do. It is not possible, for instance, that a man who is defeated by power may see his error and mend his ways. Once a man gives in he is through. If, however, he is temporarily blinded by power, and then refuses it, his battle is still on. That means he is still trying to become a man of knowledge. A man is defeated only when he no longer tries, and abandons himself.
He has to come to realize that the power he has seemingly conquered is in reality never his. He must keep himself in line at all times, handling carefully and faithfully all that he has learned.
If he can see that clarity and power, without his control over himself, are worse than mistakes, he will reach a point where everything is held in check. He will know then when and how to use
And thus he will have defeated his third enemy. The man will be, by then, at the end of his journey of
learning, and almost without warning he will come upon the last of his enemies: Old age! This enemy is the cruelest of all, the one he won't be able to defeat completely, but only fight away.
This is the time when a man has no more fears, no more impatient clarity of mind--a time when all his power is in check, but also the time when he has an unyielding desire to rest. If he gives
in totally to his desire to lie down and forget, if he soothes himself in tiredness, he will have lost his last round, and his enemy will cut him down into a feeble old creature. His desire to retreat
will overrule all his clarity, his power, and his knowledge. But if the man sloughs off his tiredness, and lives his fate though, he can then be called a man of knowledge, if only for the
brief moment when he succeeds in fighting off his last, invincible enemy. That moment of clarity, power, and knowledge is enough.
Anything is one of a million paths. Therefore you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path; if you feel you should not follow it, you must not stay with it under any conditions. To have
such clarity you must lead a disciplined life. Only then will you know that any path is only a path and there is no affront, to oneself or to others, in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you to
do. But your decision to keep on the path or to leave it must be free of fear or ambition. I warn you. Look at every path closely and
deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary. This question is one that only a very old man asks. Does this path have a heart? All paths are the same: they lead nowhere. They are paths going through the bush, or into the bush. In my own life I
could say I have traversed long long paths, but I am not anywhere.
Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn't, it is of no use. Both paths lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn't. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as
you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life. One makes you strong; the other weakens you.
Before you embark on any path ask the question: Does this path have a heart? If the answer is no, you will know it, and then you must choose another path. The trouble is nobody asks the question; and when a man finally realizes that he has taken a path without a
heart, the path is ready to kill him. At that point very few men can stop to deliberate, and leave the path. A path without a heart is never enjoyable. You have to work hard even to take it. On the other
hand, a path with heart is easy; it does not make you work at liking it.
I have told you that to choose a path you must be free from fear and ambition. The desire to learn is not ambition. It is our lot as men to want to know. The path without a heart will turn against men and destroy them. It does not take much to die, and to seek death is to seek nothing.
For me there is only the traveling on the paths that have a heart, on any path that may have a heart. There I travel, and the only worthwhile challenge for me is to traverse its full length. And there I travel--looking, looking, breathlessly.
1 fear = what we expreience clashes on close examanation with our thoughts. What he learns is never what he pictured, or imagined, and so he begins to be afraid.( fear is the mind killer!)
2 Clarity = clarity of mind which erases fear. By then a man knows his desires; he knows how to satisfy those desires. He can anticipate the new steps of learning and a sharp clarity surrounds everything. The man feels that nothing is concealed.
3 power = He has to come to realize that the power he has seemingly conquered is in reality never his. He must keep himself in line at all times, handling carefully and faithfully all that he has learned. If he can see that clarity and power, without his control over himself, are worse than mistakes, he will reach a point where everything is held in check. He will know then when and how to use his power. And thus he will have defeated his third enemy
4. OLd AGE= This is the time when a man has no more fears, no more impatient clarity of mind--a time when all his power is in check, but also the time when he has an unyielding desire to rest. If he gives in totally to his desire to lie down and forget, if he soothes himself in tiredness, he will have lost his last round, and his enemy will cut him down into a feeble old creature. His desire to retreat will overrule all his clarity, his power, and his knowledge.
"No great philosophy has ever come from an organization, but from an individual whose research has been a personal study of God and His ways. -- Sant Rajinder Singh"
Don't talk of different religions.
The one reality is everywhere,
not just in a Hindu, or a Muslim,
or anywhere else! Realize:
your awareness is
the truth about God.
- Lalla 14th Century North Indian mystic
What can you do TODAY...this very moment?
A central teaching in most spiritual traditions is: What you wish to experience, provide for another. Look to see, now, what it is you wish to experience in your own life, and in the world. Then see if there is another for whom you may be the source of that.
If you wish to experience peace, provide peace for another. If you wish to know that you are safe, cause another to know that they are safe. If you wish to better understand seemingly incomprehensible things, help another to better understand. If you wish to heal your own sadness or anger, seek to heal the sadness or anger of another.
Those others are waiting for you now. They are looking to you for guidance, for help, for courage, for strength, for understanding, and for assurance at this hour. Most of all, they are looking to you for love. My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.
"Man assumed that he was more intelligent than Dolphins because he had achieved so much: the wheel; flight: wars: and so on, whilst all the Dolphins had ever done was muck about in the water having a good time. But conversely, the Dolphins believed that they were more intelligent than Man for precisely the same reasons".
Mystery of the Silver Rings
by Don White, Creator of Project Delphis
The young dolphin gives a quick flip of her head, and an undulating silver ring appears--as if by magic--in front of her. The ring is a solid, toroidal bubble two feet across--and yet it does not rise to the surface! It stands erect in the water like the rim of a magic mirror, or the doorway to an unseen dimension. For long seconds the dolphin regards its creation, from varying aspects and angles, with its vision and sonar. Seemingly making a judgement, the dolphin then quickly pulls a small silver donut from the larger structure, which collapses into small bubbles. She then "pushes" the donut, which stays just inches ahead of her rostrum, perhaps 20 feet over a period of up to 10 seconds. Then, stopping again, she regards the twisting ring for a last time and bites it--causing it to collapse into a thousand tiny bubbles which head--as they should--for the water's surface. After a few moments of reflection, she creates another.
This isn't fantasy, it's real. And it isn't magic, just marvelous. It is a rare dolphin behavior, and we first saw it in the play of two baby dolphins. It gives us a little more insight into the superb level of control dolphins can exercise on their water environment, and underscores the fact that we can still discover things about dolphins by simply watching them.
I first saw this behavior on one of my relatively rare trips out to the Delphis lab; the project's principle scientist Ken Marten said that "the two babies, Tinkerbell and Maui" had been doing it for a little while. My reaction: "Wow, neato. How the heck do they DO that? Try to get some photo and video shots of it. It sure is cool". Ken, along with Suchi Psarakos, Research Assistant and computer programmer, did indeed document the silver rings (although video and photos don't do the rings justice), and this has made it possible to both analyze the physics behind the phenomenon and to watch the dolphins do this trick in slow-motion.
As it turned out, small silver rings weren't the only toys the dolphins were making for themselves: some of the creations were as large as a basketball rim. And Tinkerbell proved able to create a silver helix, spiraling perhaps 20 feet long, that would spring into life in a fraction of a second and remain stable in the water as she swam past, observing it with sonar and vision. then--presto! she would grab a small silver ring from the helix to play with, while the rest of the helix degraded into bubbles which would belatedly "remember" to rise to the surface.
This was a wonderful mystery to ponder. My attempts at re-creating the rings in a swimming pool succeeded only in getting water up my nose, but my guesses were confirmed--with better and more rigorous explanation--by the fluid dynamics class of Suchi's close friend Hans Ramm at Scripps Institute of Oceanography.
The silver rings, as it turns out, are "air-core vortex rings", and the helices are a similar phenomenon. Invisible, spinning vortices in the water are generated from the tip of a dolphin's dorsal fin when it is moving rapidly and turning. According to Hans: "Being unstable without a boundary nearby, the vortex line tends to form into a more stable form such as a helix. When the dolphins break the line, the ends are drawn together into closed rings. Owing to the Bernoulli effect, the higher velocity fluid around the core of the vortex is at a lower pressure than the fluid circulating farther away. Air is injected into the rings via bubbles released from the dolphin's blowhole." The energy of the water vortex is enough to keep the bubbles from rising for a reasonably long period--on the order of 10 seconds. There also seems to be a separate mechanism for producing small rings, which a dolphin can accomplish by a quick flip of its head.
There is little doubt that this is what is occurring. However, understanding the physics should not diminish our appreciation of this spontaneous act of creation by a dolphin mind. These young dolphins have detected, understood, and manipulated a subtle aspect of their environment, for no reason other than play.
Creation of these rings by dolphins isn't new. (far from it--dolphins were probably blowing magnificent silver rings while our anscestors were hanging off tree limbs). It does seem to be a relatively rare behavior, though: it has been seen before only in a specific group of dolphins documented by Diana Reiss and Jan Ostman at Marine World. "The fact that ring-blowing is rare and that we have two babies doing it suggests that one baby learned it from the other", comments Ken Marten. "Whether it was a case of observational learning, or one "taught" the other, we don't know... but it'd sure be interesting to know."
The social situation also seems to affect ring-blowing: " The babies made them most intensely when they were the only two dolphins in the tank and when there was only one adult. The behavior stopped entirely when they were outnumbered by adults, " observed Suchi. "During one intense session with Tinkerbell there were often two or three rings visible in the tank at one time. She frequently swam over to me in an excited state, then went and made some more."
The reaction to our documentation of these rings has been universal--people are fascinated by them. Dr. Ken Norris, the world's leading expert on dolphins, had never seen it before. Robert Wolff of Apple Computer's Advanced Design Group made a "quicktime" movie of ring-blowing for display on Mac computers. Arthur C. Clarke, Earthtrust Advisory Board member, thought they were wonderful--but debated my offered contention that they might be the first "extraterrestrial art", pointing to interesting "artistic" achievements by other nonhuman animals.
For myself, I do consider these rings to be "art": the creation and observation of artifacts by a nonhuman mind, with no use other than entertainment and aesthetics. One must be constantly wary not to anthropomorphize the actions of other species--to treat them as though they were human. But after watching a dolphin create one of these kinetic sculptures--observe it from many angles--and then destroy it with a bite--it seems a long leap of logic to ascribe any other motive.
This can, and will, be debated... but the beauty of the rings is beyond debate. As evidence mounts for "self awareness" and other "intelligent" qualities in dolphins, I think that it must cause us again to ask the question: what are these creatures, that they spin silver lariats for the sheer joy of creation? And what sort of creatures are we, if we cannot appreciate and protect them?
Wanting to reform the world without discovering one's true self is like trying to cover the world with leather to avoid the pain of walking on stones and thorns. It is much simpler to wear shoes.- Ramana Maharshi
This movie is an experience you will not forget.....and believe me I have tried!
dont go to see it...run away!
the assault on marine mammals
over the years as the US Navy has stepped up its use of new technology that destroys the eardrums of whales and other sea life. From NRDC's Nature's Voice, "After winning a courtroom victory for whales that blocked the Navy's global deployment of long-range LFA sonar, NRDC is now taking aim at a more widely used class of short-range systems: mid-frequency s onar. NRDC has threatened to sue the Navy unless it takes common-sense steps to protect marine mammals from the ear-splitting noise produced by these sonars. The letter of warning to the Navy follows a series of whale beachings and deaths that have been linked to the technology. At 235 decibels or more intense blasts of mid-frequency sonar can cause a whale's organs to hemorrhage."
Read the complete letter at link here