The Proof is in the Pudding
or perhaps in response to a tricky situation.......

In the left hand picture we have a picture of Ramana Maharshi - a giant of silence and understanding, beyond the realm of a teacher.
He wandered into my life many years ago and it is face that speaks to me directly, more than the words which were few and have been made noisy by his followers.
I visited his ashram for a while but spent most of my time with a holy man on the mountain whose job it was to chase away goats from the newly planted trees.
I happened upon him on my way to the caves where Ramana sat for many years and where today the holy one's continue to explore realms beyond pleasure and pain.
Everyone kept asking me if I felt the Sage's presence, and my awkward response was always a guilty no.
But then there was this simple being in a loin cloth - shining so brightly.
He invited me to sit with him for a while.
And then he showed his omniscience for he retrieved a straw mat from beside the rock and placed it under a tree.
Wow - how did he know I liked to be horizontal in the heat.
He folded up a cloth as a pillow and invited me to lay down.
Which I did - he continued planting and chanting to Shiva and Shakti and in the blink of an eye, the day had absented itself.
The next day the desire to visit the caves was replaced by the desire to just go and lie with the goat man.
And thus my time at Arunuchala was spent lying down, falling into the deepest sleep, and in the background, worship and forestry were ongoing.

The only photo I have of him is on paper and I could copy it over, but then I would have to hunt for the card reader or the download cable oh and the camera - and let us face life is too short to be looking for what is not here right now.
Suffice to say he was the beauty of this sacred mountain.

But my real reason for heading to India was as a gift to myself.
I had recently had a miscarriage in the second trimester of pregnancy and started bleeding.
Not being alarmist I took copious amounts of yarrow and other herbs reputed to stop blood loss.
By the time I realised that it was not doing its job and decided to go to hospital hours had past.
I had lost consciousness by the time we arrived and needed blood transfusions and such.
How can I describe the lack of consciousness - it was not knowable whilst there it was only on returning to this paradigm that I could recall this space.
And of course I am putting words here that did not exist there.
It was no-thingness. A black void of complete silence.
It was beyond any other description.

Some time later I received some money and instead of using it for something "sensible" I decided to go and feed my spirit.
I had happened upon the teachings of Ramesh Balsekar who resided in Mumbai and thus I journeyed to the great unknown.
A translator for Nisargadatta Maharaj for many years.
Here was this man in a 83 year old body with the sharpest of minds.
I would watch him tirelessly leading people to the truth of their desire.
We all started off expressing how we were looking for enlightenment which he would quickly debunk.
What we were actually looking for was peace and the way to get peace he advised was to ascertain who was the doer.
Once that had been established then there could be no grief, pride, envy, blame.
He repeated over and over again how all there was is consciousness - consciousness is all there is.

This being had a huge impact on my life.
Through him the courage appeared to live this life as I wanted to. Beyond grabbing and avarice and without bowing to the god or corporate safety.
A man so extremely ordinary and yet a teacher of measure.
A few times I would write to him and a few weeks later a faded 30 year old aerogram would weave its way to my postbox with the words on it again expressing that events happened, deeds were done , but there was no doer.
He would re-iterate how life continued to unfold its destiny and of course there was pain, but it did not define one.

Now it would seem that many of the teachers have had some sexual scandal hanging over them.
And this is where this blog is leading (yeah, in a very convoluted fashion) -
Four years ago or so he went to do his annual retreat in Kovolam - Germany - with a handful of regular devotees arranging it and bringing in some new faces.
Ramesh was 89 at this time and in presence was an eagle, in body a sparrow.
He had a young German woman who attended his talks daily in Mumbai and traveled with him as a companion and support. I can't recall her name.
And then there were 3 other women who all had some claim to him.
So one day they are on their break during the retreat, and his Mumbai assistant pops up with
"I massage Ramesh in breaks to keep him calm - and often give him a happy ending"
Ditto the others.
But now for me the most interesting thing was they were all okay with what they were doing when they believed they were the only one's doing it.
But upon discovering that others were also giving him pleasure it turned into a scandal.
They marched upon the organisers and demanded action talking about the guru and the abuse of power.
Now if we were talking about teenagers or vulnerable women I would question it too, but these were all mature, able capable women who seemingly chose to do what they do.

So the next session, beloved Ramesh was challenged in a totally confrontational way.
Name dragged through the mud on every channel.
And he stood still and poised and answered "yes what you say is true - these allegations have merit"
Actions happened , deeds were done, but there was no doer.

His wife when questioned about it could not understand the shock - she stood by him.

Anyway 2 Sunday's ago Ramesh left his sparrow body for a larger flight plan/circle or his wave simply sank back into the ocean.
And when I am struck by feelings of lack of self worth I am reminded that of 6 billion people on this planet, I was one of the lucky one's that got to sit at this beings feet.

And life in her infinite wisdom, seeing that I was still straggling and holding onto separation sent another teaching this way.
Endlessly patient, clear, available, most gentle but not adverse to a rib nudging when necessary saved me deeply from myself the other day.
Was trapped in the fury of earth and it's corrupt leaders and its cruelties and with that my own supposed flaws which need to be wiped out bla bla blah. You know the power of resistance.
And so I wrote to Gilbert about the greyness and the downward turning mouth and a lack of joy and where the hell was the inherent joy he spoke of .
His reply which really knocked me into full fledged laughter was"under the mask your are wearing stupid".
No words could have been more profound or meaningful.

I decided to poke my head out of the rabbit warren yesterday and happened upon some Sunday papers. The gap between the rich and the poor here has now overtaken Brazil. Our ministers loyal to their leader and not their people have been forking out millions on luxury cars.
The trade unions are sharpening their blades and not a moment too soon.

Tao returned, taller with more knowing in his look.
He is building a growing shed in the garden (isanga in xhosa), has refurbished the chicken hok, and is turning out some very inspired meals.
The other babes roll out onto the sodden earth in the morning and return when hungry.
Right now Sage has ventured up to the dam with a handmade spear gun - fishing with a difference.


nobody said…
Su, I'm so glad you're back! And thanks for that, I liked it a lot.
Anonymous said…
Dear Su, so glad that you have come out of your rabbit warren. You were missed.

The goatman fortunate you are, as am i, for the smile that it brought to my face.I can smell the heat!

So how many kippen in het kippen hok - which i thought had been fixed before?

with love,
su said…
Hi Nobody,
Yeah I am back, although I suspect some might wish I would disappear again. By the way how is the abstinence doing?
Yes the hok was fixed but then Tao returned with vigour afresh and an eye on starting an egg business.
So it was calculated that it needed to be enlarged substantially.
So we have new improved, enlarged hok and the good news is that we have not put up a parking lot.
veriword: daggased
Here dagga means ganga.
nobody said…
Thanks matey, the detox is going pretty well. My brain hasn't quite settled down and I'm still a bit scatty. The yoga is marvellous. It's a kind of Hatha thing - 'yoga in daily life' they call it. God, where's it been all my life?

Otherwise, the cigs (a bit like the balrog tumbling into the abyss with its one last flick of the whip) gave me a dose of pleurisy/pneumonia. And this was after I quit smoking, if you can believe that. Anyway I decided to skip the antibiotics and go with lots of distilled water, deep breathing, and stretching. Sure enough four days later and it's nearly gone.

And some might wish you to disappear? What? Can you hear the whoosh of whatever that was going straight over my head? It was pretty loud...
Anonymous said…
So how many kippen in the new and improved kippenhok-minus parking lot, but hopefully still paradise?
I recall having seen a photo and read about a chicken that would be hawk? Which brings me to this thought...

Your unschooling has had some wonderous effects. You are a very brave person Su. My hat off to you!

your veriword i read as dag (day) gased.
your dagga sed smokes much better. :)

I am with Nobody when it comes to wondering why some might wish you'd disappear again... you? of all people? you? Nah! Don't ya go doing that now, ya hear...
be gentle with yourself
with love,

vw: whish or is it whoosh?
su said…
Yoga certainly does help calm the mind and get one in touch with the inner world.
Our yoga teacher here died at the age of 85 so I am left kicking the stones and dirt up in the nature reserve with dogs.
No postures required only the same intention and awareness.
Although yesterday I had a fly that was determined to kiss my lips.
For over an hour this fly danced around my head.
I tried to swat it, make peace with it, ignore it, worship it ...there was no peace just the fly and I.
Anyway a few block away from home I noticed that the fly had left me.
My lips remained relatively virginal.
And then it occurred to me that although it was no longer around in body, he had become part of this mind.

Have been reading your blog and the comments therein but am afraid I find myself completely out of my depth.
Whilst reading it a nurery rhyme kept coming in and blocking out the arguments about shadowns and hoax and nasa - the simplest ditty which bypasses it all :
I see the moon and the moon sees me - Life bless the moon and Life bless me.
Anonymous said…
How many chickens are there?
Well still 12.
We went on an outing in the stuffed up blue car into a beautiful valley.
Snacking on olives along the way.
Happened upon a farm where we were to purchase additional laying hens and met a rather remarkable farmer who spent hours educating the kids on poultry and their needs.
He suggested to Tao that there is a breed of hen that is so sought after that he would have farmers knocking on his door (name eludes me) - so we are awaiting some of our hens to become broody in order for them to sit on the eggs of the much desired breed.
Let me tell you the tricks and turns of the simple life glow in brilliance.

Am having a huge crisis about unschooling the kids - as people often shout in my ear - it's their lives you are fucking up you selfish woman.
But then I figure well if I was selfish I would send them off to school and I would have some time off to myself to have pedicures and such.

You have inspired the next blog which I will post this weekend about this question and why some wish I would vanish.
Till then.
su said…
That Anonymous would be me.
I swear the buttons are a dancing and changing position,.
nobody said…
Well if it's any consolation Su, I reckon 90% of what I learned in school was shit. The 10% that was good was only that way because I was interested to begin with. The school of course didn't give a shit if I was interested or not. It just ploughed on regardless - a bunch of unenthusiastic hacks droning away.

The reason I spent 90% of my time doing shit was because there wasn't a single person who said to me that if I only enjoyed English, Art, History and Philosophy then why didn't I just do that?

Instead, there I was convinced I should be doing chemistry, physics, economics, and pure maths because it would be 'good for getting a job'. What? A job I was never going to enjoy anyway?

Can you believe that? Not a single person to tell me that I should do what I like and the job will figure itself out.

Fah! A tuppence for the whole process. If I had kids they'd either be in Steiner, or I'd be doing what you're doing.
Anonymous said…
Re 'schooling'or Unschooling...
methinks that you are sooo far ahead that you look like you are behind, Su!

This is what i came across in my net travels today and i quote:

"Turning upside down the prevailing notions of learning and education, in favor of learning what’s truly useful for the better world we are trying to build, is the enlightened, practical purpose of Gaia University."
... that made me think of you...

and this is where that quote came from...

Your brilliant unschooling came to mind when i read that.

Suffice it to say, you are not alone in your educational endevours...

I've got to go (dinner and all), but wanted to pass this on to you first.
vword: fordsu
su said…
When we originally moved to this village it was because there was a Steiner/Waldorf school.
There are some absolutely amazing things about these schools and I love the creativity and rhythm that the kids pick up.
Unfortunately as with any system there is a fair bit of dogma and very into the fairies and the gnomes which my kids were just aghast at.
I was called into the kindergarten to speak to the teacher one day who told me they had a serious problem with Sage then aged 6.
She was trying to teach them awe and reverence for a creator god and Sage just kept saying but this is nonsense, there is nothing in this room that is not god.
She asked me to talk him out of this - that was when he became unschooled.
su said…
Trust your dinner was good.
Thank you for that link.
Such feedback is a gift at times of faltering.
nobody said…
Hey Su,

It's spooky you should say that. Lately I've been ploughing my way through all the occult stuff over at Jeff Wells' Rigorous Intuition. And in the last couple of pieces Steiner's name has kept popping up with him keeping some very dubious company and otherwise being responsible for a series of fruity quotes. So now I'm not quite sure what to think. And with you telling me this, I really wonder. Thanks for that.
su said…
Just wanted to say that this particular spiritual search started with anthroposophy.
And yet looking back I would say it never set me free it just kept me totally contracted.
All this mind stuff about the seven realms and having to evolve and master .....
Every time I read Steiner and his views on parenting I felt a total failure.
Thankfully there is now realisation that the mere concept of an individual soul, separate from all other separate souls is a sick divine joke which has kept us all tethered.
Not that it means anything, was just moved to write that.
Anonymous said…
Dear Su,

Yes, dinner was good. Truly a gratifying experience... both the preparation as well as the consuming of said dinner....

Not being familiar with the Steiner/Waldorf schooling, i did a search and opted to read the 'anti' website. For me, that serves as a short cut to the dogma explanation - which also explained to me (somewhat) your conversation with Nobody....
Ladder isms/sophy/ology... you start at the 'bottom'rung and work your way on 'up'... and then there is that tell-tale sign... "feeling like a Failure". Utterly amazing isn't it, the amount of ologies, isms and sophies that promote this Ladder method... and (of course) the individual soul concept that you so aptly mentioned...

I need to log off. The kitten on my lap -in from the sudden chill tonight 1C- is making this almost impossible to type and live, warm, purring kittens come before keyboard conversations at 5 am when i really should be in my bed.Meanwhile, be kind to yourself Su. It all is as it should be....and don't forget to breathe.
with love,
vword: hazine
Anonymous said…
"Thankfully there is now realisation that the mere concept of an individual soul, separate from all other separate souls is a sick divine joke which has kept us all tethered."

Su, whatever the inspiration... to have written the above quote... Brilliant!
It made sense to me last night and it still makes sense to me throughout this day..."a sick divine joke which has kept us all tethered"... such an impinging choice of words!
Thank you!
This quote is worthy of needlepointing!
nobody said…
Hee hee! Very good! I do love it when you're feisty.

Hullo Ravi, very cool.
nina said…
Susu, In case you were looking for After Armegeddon ...

I must comment on the very moving photo of Iona with bunny, so lovely.
And, I would have hung out with the goat herder too.
su said…
Hi Nina,
Have missed you of late.
Thought of heading out onto the plains to see if I could meet my fellow being there.
It appeared to work.
How the hell are you?
chickory said…
just the post i needed to read today. thank you.

"worship and forestry were ongoing"
half a world away, the same.
noticias said…
Corrupción política del perú -Gerry- Pederásta y Pedófilo Caso Maddie

El Fraude, Moneda Nacional
En el pais de no me acueeeerdo ,
doy tres pasitos y me pieeeeerdo
se me cae, un billete y lo levanta el juez,
“uy perdon” le digo y contesta “No importa, pase Ud.”
Un campeonato ganado,
otro arbritro comprado,
Un cura que reclama ” Felices los niños”
.. que yo abuse
Y clarin siempre diciendo , La pura Verdad,
que el presidente de turno quiere escuchar
Compren, compren, se venden libertades,
se venden al por mayor , abogados corruptos y fiscales tambien
seis tiros en la cabeza que el dinero no pudo ocultar
hay silencios que son muy caros pero mas caro es el hablar,
algun medio pagara, esta excusiva de verdad
Habilitamos lo que sea por un cafe y algo mas,
digame lo que necesita, cualquier cosa se consigue
el diego, lo podemos conversar
Y hablando de Diego, pobre muchacho
que fraude le hicieron, se parece al electoral ,
por un punto mas de raiting una bebe queda sin hogar ,
es que la TV es tirana y del Monstruo mejor ni hablar
Ya para ir dejando el Verso que es moneda nacional,y los medios informatiiiiic.....voooooos...que no parán de tapár y
sí para nosotros ya tenemos a telefonica que nos mándaaa a reeecargáaáár,aqui todo el múndo a robár, con el mónstruo de góóógle que nos manipulaaaaaaaa
para que nos tápeeeen la voca con sus masters dirigiiiiiendonos sí débemos estár, para que luego llegue él més y a paaaaagar a todos el fraude la moneda nacional ....con el control de google tódos estámos yáááá y los tontos alimééééntar....?quiéééén nóóós quééééda yáááá¿...Todos los deréchos nós lós están violándo.........Y los Mccann ríéndos están...

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