Life and the living of it is an amazing teacher, yes. Indeed, the man pictured here, waving in his doorway in Mumbai, India, is one of life’s teachings: Nisargadatta Maharaj. It seems he’d agree that life’s the real Master Teacher with – like him – a compelling way of presenting its ongoing series called, ‘Reality’.
There’s no lack of teachers and teachings; some will confuse, some will clarify, none will, of themselves alone, do more than edify. Perhaps – pushed and prodded by unrelenting and loving ‘teachers’ – we’ll discover that truth is not an accumulation, an achievement of a personal endeavour. There’s nothing to it: there’s a simple seeing, a dawning, a ‘recognizing’ of being aware-of-awareness, an alertness that never ends, having never begun.
I’ve been historically, habitually, unwilling to learn. Never learned to learn. Too many rules or not enough; too much repetition and saying things I didn’t need to know over and over. So I started reading and reading every teacher and teaching that seemed to promise to slake my thirst not so much for knowledge as truth. A Truth which I posed to myself as the Big Question: “What’s really going on here after all?”
For decades, I thought that that knowledge – the Truth – would be found in some outside, as yet unknown, authority, wise priest or otherwise knowledgeable guy who knew the Truth. That truth to me meant that I would find something or someone – my “Last Ideal” – that sufficient something (probably material) to believe in.
Part of the problem which I discovered only much later, was I already thought I pretty much knew – at least more than most folks my age, yes 🙂 In fact, in retrospect, I was afraid not to know. “OMG what if I don’t know and I get caught faking all this.”
Oh, there were some greater minds I’d agree, but they rarely knew much more than me. 🙂
One of life’s great teachers and teachings is called “Nature” and it seems these days we’re collectively, globally, walking away from – or toward – not only Nature writ large, but our Self nature – our naturally loving ways of relating. Our mutually innate goodness is variously polluted and ‘normally’ murky if not clouded. Reality is at once, harder to know and easier to believe.
“If the sight of the blue skies fills you with joy, if a blade of grass springing up in the fields has power to move you, if the simple things of nature have a message that you understand, rejoice, for your soul is alive.”
Indeed, we’re alive…and aware of it, yes. THE teacher is awareness. Reality. You’re not just an idea ABOUT reality – you are reality, aka ‘awareness.’ You are your own teacher, your own student, your own Self, teaching yourself. You are, here and now, alertly loving what is, as is. After all’s said and done, perhaps there’s nothing to learn here but to gently rest in awareness: watch and see, live and let be, lovingly. That’s real learning, and it never ends, yes 🙂
~ [ can’t get any peace without quiet, dept. ]
ODE TO MY KETTLE
You’re warmly with me every morning,
You’re sighing near me every night.
You’re my constant companion.
You sing and bring me such delight.
In Canada it was dark hot coffee,
In Italy your black tea was right.
In America you served green tea,
’tis this morning’s quiet delight.
Without you kettle, there’s no arising,
no settling into the fading day.
Whatever it is you’re doing,
it’s easing me along the way.
Truth too, ’twas there at my elbow,
sipping with sinners, saints and sages.
It was looking outside, over there, elsewhere.
Seems all truth reveals itself in stages.
One morning, savoring a satsang cuppa,
seems it finally came to see:
it was always this deepening love
searching for itself, not me.
Aware living’s a grace in knowing
who and what we are.
A love in being this flowing,
not waiting for some distant star.
Love knows what it’s looking for,
mere mind cannot ever see.
Look inside to know peace within,
enjoy your self now, with tea. 🙂