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Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly

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Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly

Post by Freya on Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:35 am

"Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly." - G.K. Chesterton 

 

I love what Watts says in this talk, which accords with spiritual precepts I've read elsewhere -- for example Taoists emphasise lightness of being vs. heaviness, and from memory there was once a great Chinese master who described enlightenment as the same as common everyday existence, except two inches off the ground...

Swami Vivekananda and others also emphasise the importance of strength and wholesome-mindedness, joyfulness, that our true nature is like a bird who flies, not the sad bird stuck on the tree of life eating bitter fruit and feeling sorry for itself.

I suppose this ties in well with Lunar's thread on stages of spiritual development as well. Smiley
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Re: Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly

Post by President Roosevelt on Tue Jan 05, 2016 3:52 pm





Freya and I:

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Re: Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly

Post by Freya on Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:56 pm

Satori/enlightenment described by Zen master Suzuki Daisetz, quoted by Watts:
‘Well, it’s like ordinary, everyday experience, except about two inches off the ground.’

"How does your head look to your eyes? Well, I tell you, it looks like what you see out in front of you, because all that you see out in front of you is how you feel inside your head...And so, for this reason, the great sixth patriarch, Huineng, in China, said it was a great mistake for those who are practicing Buddhist meditation to try to make their minds empty. And a lot of people tried to do that. They sat down and tried to have no thoughts whatsoever in their minds. Not only no thoughts, but no sense experiences, so they'd close their eyes, they'd plug up their ears, and generally go into sensory deprivation.

Well, sensory deprivation, if you know how to handle it, can be quite interesting. It'll have the same sort of results as taking LSD or something like that, and there are special labs made nowadays where you can be sensorily deprived to an amazing degree. But if you're a good yogi this doesn't bother you at all, sends some people crazy. But if you dig this world, you can have a marvelous time in a sensory deprivation scene. Also, especially, if they get you into a condition of weightlessness. Skin divers, going down below a certain number of feet--I don't know exactly how far it is--get a sense of weightlessness, and at the same time this deprives them of every sense of responsibility. They become alarmingly happy, and they have been known to simply take off their masks and offer them to a fish. And of course they then drown. So if you skin dive, you have to keep your eye on the time. You have to have a water watch or a friend who's got a string attached to you. If you go down that far, and at a certain specific time you know you have got to get back, however happy you feel, and however much inclined you feel to say 'Survival? Survival? Whatever the hell's the point of that?'

And this is happening to the men who go out into space. They increasingly find that they have to have automatic controls to bring them back. Quite aside that they can't change in any way from the spaceship...Now isn't that interesting? Can you become weightless here? I said a little while ago that the person who really accepts transience begins to feel weightless. When Suzuki was asked what was it like to have experienced satori, enlightenment, he said it's just like ordinary everyday experience, but about two inches off the ground. Juan-Za[?], the Taoist, once said 'It is easy enough to stand still, the difficulty is to walk without touching the ground.'

Now why do you feel so heavy? It isn't just a matter of gravitation and weight. It is that you feel that you are carrying your body around. So there is a koan in Zen Buddhism, 'Who is it that carries this corpse around?' Common speech expresses this all of the time: 'life is a drag.' 'I feel like I'm just dragging myself around.' 'My body is a burden to me.' To whom? To whom? That's the question. You see, when there is nobody left for whom the body can be a burden, then the body isn't a burden. But so long as you fight it, it is." - Alan Watts
















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“It’s dark because you are trying too hard.
Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly.
Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply.
Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.

So throw away your baggage and go forward.
There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet,
trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair.
That’s why you must walk so lightly.
Lightly my darling,
on tiptoes and no luggage,
not even a sponge bag,
completely unencumbered.”


― Aldous Huxley, Island
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Re: Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly

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