--- In FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com, "jim_flanegin" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> 
> --- In FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com, "Patrick Gillam" 
> <jpgillam@> wrote:
> > --- jim_flanegin wrote:
> > > --- Rick Archer wrote:
> > > >
> > > > Seems to me that enlightenment is a matter of seeing
> > > > things clearly. It doesn't mean you're Superman.
> > > >
> > > That's as good and elegant a definition as I've heard-- seeing 
> > > things clearly. Plain and simple.

This is very much in line with the Buddhist approach
to enlightenment.  One "definition" I've heard from
Buddhist teachers of the state is, "Enlightenment is 
perception without mental modification."

*Any* mental modification. I think that one of the
things that "rings false" in some people's reported
experiences of enlightenment is that they attempt
to make the experiences "fit into" the descriptions
of such experiences they have been fed by their
tradition. They *color* the stories of their own
personal experiences in such a way that they seem
to be more in line with what other members of the
organization were told about what such experiences
"should" be like. Or -- another common phenomenon --
they describe their experiences such that it appears
they fall into one of the pat descriptions of *stages*
of enlightenment -- CC, GC, UC, BC, or whatever the
various "flavors" of experiences are labeled by their

That's one reason I find reports such as Jim's 
valuable. He rarely, if ever, tries to do this.
He just talks about what he experiences, without
trying to "color" it or define it in any way *as*
anything; they're just his stories of "what is,"
for him.

> > To bring up Suzanne Segal again, that's an admonition she 
> > hammered toward the end of her book -- "seeing things 
> > as they really are." But she never elaborated on it. 
> > 
> > Sometimes I think the work of Byron Katie is geared toward 
> > seeing things as they really are, unencumbered by 
> > preconceptions or fears. Maybe that's one explanation.

Preconceptions are always just that -- pre-conceptions.
They're what one expects the baby to look like and
be like before any actual screwing has taken place. :-)

When the baby actually *is* conceived and pops out,
it doesn't necessarily look like or act like what
was expected. And that's Ok. But some "parents" have
a tendency to try to *make* it into what they expected.
The kid's playing in the sandbox, clearly blissed out
drawing in the sand, enjoying being an artist, and
the "parents" are already planning its career as a 
lawyer, because they were told that all enlightenment
babies are lawyers.  :-)  :-)  :-)

Back in Fiuggi, I knew about half a dozen folks who
were having flashes of awakening. At first they were 
quite happy describing them *as they were*, as 24/7
transcendence, along with whatever else was going on
in the "foreground" of life. Then Maharishi gave a
lecture in which he suggested that one of the 
qualities of CC was "X." Within days, all of these
people were talking about "X." No one had ever 
mentioned "X" before, or seemingly even thought 
about "X" before, but the moment it was an *expected*
component of CC, they added it to their stories of
their own personal experiences.

In other words, in my opinion, not being stabilized
in their experience, they were attempting to *color*
it and *make them into* what such experiences were
"supposed" to be like. What was obvious from my 
point of view was that the joy had gone out of their
stories. Before this event, when these people had
been talking about "what was" for them, you could
*feel* the energy behind their words, the sense of
newness and excitement that they were feeling. The
moment they switched to telling stories about what
they were "supposed" to be experiencing, all of 
that joy went out of the words. It was just people
telling stories that had been told to them.

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