Lesson 5: The Precious Moment

February 2017

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It's the second week of February here in Asheville and the daffodils have already blossomed and the Bradford pear is sprouting new leaves. As I picked a few for the office, the smell of the daffodil in the middle of winter caused me to forget the telephone conference I had and for just a millisecond, it was the onset of summer. For less than the length of an inhalation, my mind let go of the daily responsibilities and the expectations to be met.

Thinking is a tremendous skill and what you wouldn't give to be able not to! The very skill you were taught in your educational process is the very prison in which you live as you grow up...stuck in the past...planning, worrying, remembering, repressing, revenging, grudging, analyzing, regretting, wishing, hoping, ...the mind that you were taught to develop now owns you and you are unable to control it, much less make it be able to be still. The precious moments are stolen.

"His wakened mind became an empty slate
On which the Universal and Solo could write
All that represses our fallen consciousness
Was taken from him like a forgotten load:
A fire that seemed the body of a god
Consumed the limiting figures of the past
And made large room for a new self to live."

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The precious moments are those in which, momentarily, the mind is vacant and you experience the present moment, the unfolding, illuminating beauty of your life that surrounds you each and every breath...regardless. The precious moments are those in which the chains of the past are broken and that simple moment evokes the eternal freedom of your soul and the cherished next breath that takes in the smell of the daffodil, making room for the next one and the next one and the next one. The precious moment is simply the previous moment in which you were not paying attention. As SA reminds us in "Savitri,"

"The laws of the Unknown create the known.
The events that shape the appearance of our lives
And a cipher of subliminal quiverings
Which rarely we surprise or vaguely feel,
Are an outcome of repressed realities
That hardly rise into material day."

The power that resides inside of you is a power that you have sought your entire life outside of you. The outside and the inside, the horizontal and the vertical, and the world of daily assault and the world of perfection are the two worlds in which you live. The precious moments are when for a moment you escape from the outside to the inside and everything is OK, everything is perfect in its current state and nothing is needed or missing. It is in this state of mind, even if just for a brief glimpse, you see that you are one those precious moments.

"Communicates without means the unspoken thought;
It moves events by its bare silent will,
Acts at a distance without hands or feet.
This giant ignorance, this dwarfish Life
It can illumine with a prophet of sight,
Invoke the bacchic rapture, The Fury's goad,
In our body arouse the demon or the god,
Call in the Omniscient and Omnipotent,
Awake a forgotten Almightiness within.
In its own plane a shining emperor,
Even in this rigid realm, Mind can be King:"

To be practical, you can easily divorce your mind from its system of judgments, beliefs, opinions, perceptions, projections, and positions even if just for a second. If you don't believe this, then go take a cold shower for 10 seconds and see what happens. Your mind will forget what it was thinking. Wrap up warmly but quickly and lay on the bed with some soft music and feel the warm returning to your body. You will experience a precious moment.

The next time you go out to eat, decide ahead of time to leave a $100 tip, regardless of the food or service (I left a $100 tip for Travis at Stan's Cocktail Lounge Washington DC Wednesday, March 2). As your mind is decimating you for being so stupid, hang around long enough to see the reaction of the server to your generosity and for a brief moment, you will forget what you were thinking as you witness the joy on their face. You will experience a precious moment.

The reason? Because that is what you are. Yes, you.



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Lesson 4: Milk into Cheese

February 2017

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I learned carpentry work when I was young and for a number of years, I worked beside one contractor who taught me everything I know about building stuff.

But there is a block in my brain about the geometry of certain things. When I was 40 and going through a huge transition in life, the contractor hired me as a supervisor on one of his sites. We were good friends and as we were having lunch one day, he said, "Haydn, there are simple things that you just don't get." I started laughing and affirmed his observation.

There is an alchemy in processes that allows one thing to become another: milk-cheese, grapes-wine, mortar-cement, life-death, wood-home. The alchemy of change that allows an individual or a community or a nation or a planet to evolve is much the same: you know that it changes but don't exactly understand how it happens. Because you don't know how it happens, it takes a lot longer. If you don't know how to use a skill saw, it takes a lot longer to build it. Could it take a lot less time to become happy if you knew how to do it? The answer is yes.

"For all we have acquired soon loses worth,
An old disvalued credit in Time's bank,
Imperfection's cheque drawn on the Inconscient.
An inconsequence dogs every effort made,
And chaos waits on every cosmos formed:
In each success a seed of failure lurks.
He saw the doubtfulness of all things here,
The incertitude of man's proud confident thought,
The transience of the achievements of his force.
A thinking being in an unthinking world,
An island in the sea of the Unknown,
He is a smallness trying to be great,
An animal with some instincts of a god,
His life a story too common to be told,
His deed a number summing up to nought,
His consciousness a torch lit to be quenched,
His hope a star above a cradle and grave.
And yet a greater destiny may be his,
For the eternal spirit is his truth.
He can re-create himself and all around,
And fashion new the world in which he lives:
He, ignorant, is the Knower beyond Time,
He is the Self above Nature, above Fate."

Herein lies the alchemy of your life. First, accept that the knowledge you need to live magnificently lies secret and dormant inside of you. Second, it is the process of becoming that forces the alchemy to take place, it is the becoming that forces you to know about that knowledge. It is the darkness and difficulty of life that forces change to occur. How much you are capable of enduring is mathematically proportional to the quality of your life. Thirdly, consciousness is directly linked to what you are capable of enduring. Adversity forges character. Darkness is the alchemy of light. The process of becoming is the gap between where you are right now (this) and its movement to what it is capable of being (that). Do you understand? Becoming  is what turns milk into cheese! So, the implication is that you must learn to see your becoming differently.

In order to see your becoming differently, you must see it as an unfolding, giving up your mind's attachments to the outcomes. Let your becoming be the primary tool that drives you further inward to the only place where you will find the knowledge you need to respond to the unfolding of those events in your life. And to be consistent...and you knew I was going to say are the milk, the becoming and the cheese.


1. Notice that grief, pain, suffering and fear come as a result of from your own choices. And if you don't buy that, then notice that grief, pain, suffering and fear come as a result of how you choose to perceive those choices.
2. Notice that your happiness and joy and bliss is a result of how you choose to perceive the unfolding of your becoming.
3. Your becoming and all of the events associated with it are perfect for you.
4. Those events may not be fun but they are perfect, designed to serve as the alchemy of your becoming, of moving you from "this" to "that."
5. Reaction is not action.
6. Your circumstances are an unfolding of who you are.
7. To change your circumstances, change who you are.
8. The fastest way to change milk into cheese is to learn to see.
9. Refuse and I mean refuse to see life tragically.








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Lesson 3: The Secret Knowledge

February 2017

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The mind is like a river that can never find its way to the sea, meandering from sin to virtue and back. Two steps forward one step back...and that's on a good day. It is so easy to become trapped in the routines of daily demands and the love of the sea becomes lost in the turbulent waters of life. The years roll by without noticing that the outward events in your life have their origin within you.

Can you look back and see the thread of perfection in your life, of how everything was connected to everything else and had certain events not happened, good and bad, the other events could not have happened either? Can you see that you were not able to see the unfolding of your life until it had already unfolded? Can you see that one of your problems is being able to see this? The reason that consciousness is so important is that it allows you to see the meaning and place for all physical phenomena. Without consciousness, you see only chaos and meaninglessness.

So, follow me here carefully. Invisible laws create visible outcomes. What you don't see is creating what you do see. Now you're ready to apply that thought: Mind creates Matter...whether you see it or not...whether you understand it or not. So, take the thought one step further and you can apply the wisdom again: What you see inside yourself, you see outside of yourself. Said in reverse, the world you see outside of you is the world inside of you.

I am going to tie last week's lesson to this week's lesson: If you are ignorant to the meaning of your life (existence), you are ignorant about how to live it (experience). Case closed.

"There are two who are One and play in many worlds;
In knowledge and Ignorance they have spoken and met
And light and darkness are their eyes' interchange;
Our pleasure and pain are their wrestle and embrace,
Our deeds, our hopes are intimate to their tale;
They are married secretly in our thought and life."

The cells of your body hold the secret to your unfolding. The overt you is seeking the covert knowledge that lies inside of you, playing a game that the knowledge you  seek is outside of you. For the meantime, don't  be concerned about reaching this greater Self but take comfort in believing that it is there. If what I am saying is true...that the imprisonment you created for yourself does not really exist... then it suggests, of course, that you made the imprisonment up.

It is time to make up something else and stop wasting your time. Recognize another version of you: whole and complete, needing nothing from anybody for any reason to be OK. And choose at last to know and believe that all you need to be OK has always been inside of you...a cavern of gold and honey sealed away waiting patiently in time to be discovered. Your goal is to hear the muffled voice inside of you that speaks to your inborn right to wisdom, bliss, oneness and peace in spite of the difficulties of your fate. The secret knowledge you seek is inside of you and not in someone else or somewhere else.

You can only wake up if you want to. You can't wake up by reading this or by having someone tell you about it. You can only do it by having the courage to eliminate the garbage and drama in your life that keeps you comatose. You have waited so long, and at times the path has been so difficult. But it is, at last, time for you to see. You don't have to know how yet. Just know that it is there and this knowing will begin to open the door.

"A few shall see what none yet understands;
God shall grow up while the wise men talk and sleep;
For man shall not know the coming till its hours
And belief shall be not till the work is done."



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Lesson 2: The Solution to the Real Issue

January 2017

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It is so simple to state that the solutions to your issues lay within you...but they do. If you are willing to just consider this idea, then you realize that there are two of you: the crazy you and the enlightened you. So, I am saying outright and with as much conviction as I can: There's nothing wrong with you. In fact, it's the exact opposite. The problem lies in the fact that you think there is something wrong with you. The solution lies in waking up and realizing that it's a lie.

The secret knowledge that lies inside of you includes the understanding that the experiences that make up the tapestry of your life have not been accidental, nor have their purposes been to punish, deny, silence or condemn you. You created those sacred experiences of your life as a tool to wake up and experience the grandest meaning of your existence.

"He is the Maker and the world he made,
He is the vision and he is the Seer;
He is himself the actor and the act,
He is himself the dreamer and the dream.
There are Two who are One and play in many worlds;
In Knowledge and Ignorance they have spoken and met
And light and darkness are their eyes' interchange;
Our pleasure and pain are their wrestle and embrace,
Our deeds, our hopes are intimate to their tale;
They are married secretly in our thought and life."

How does the thinker become the thought? It's easy. You take a perception like "Life is hard" or "You disrespected me" and then you project it onto the world, onto another person or even onto God. Perception always leads to projection! Perception is your paint. Projection is your paintbrush. Projection takes the negativity inside of you and dumps it onto something or someone else outside of you so you don't have to be responsible for it.

Who on earth would choose pain or suffering? You would have to be crazy to do that! I know that it sounds so utterly impossible to the mind that you are the one who chose those experiences as a path in life. But consider the alternative. If the experiences of your life are random and your suffering is a result of accidental forces, and other people did these things to you and it's not your fault, and God is the only one who can save you from them, then those experiences are more powerful than God and this mental condition renders God powerless. In other words, you will watch yourself repeating those experiences over and over and over again...and the issues remain unresolved.

You pretend to be what you are not in order to unveil the inescapable truth that you will experience one day in one lifetime: that all you seek lies within you, and that the essence of your existence contains within it the secret knowledge that you have sought your entire life to know.

"He is the Player who became the play,
He is the Thinker who became the thought;
He is the many who was the silent One."

For the time being, consider that all you seek lies within you but beyond the limitations imposed by your mind. Inside of you lives everything you have ever wanted, everything you have ever dreamed of, everything for which your heart yearns.

"In the hidden strength of her omnipotent Will,
Driven by her breath across life's tossing deep,
Through the thunder's roar and through the windless hush,
Through fog and mist where nothing more is seen,
He carries her sealed orders in his breast.
Late will he know, opening the mystic script,
Whether to a blank port in the Unseen
He goes or armed with her fiat, to discover
A new mind and body in the city of God
And enshrine the Immortal in his glory's house
And make the finite one with Infinity."

I am outright stating that it time for all of this insanity to come to an end. But remember, you can't change the world. But you can change yourself...if you have the courage and the right knowledge about how your beautiful Self works from the inside out.


1. Your experiences do not define you. You do, in spite of the experiences.
2. There is nothing wrong with you. What is wrong with you is that you don't know this.
3. There is within you a secret knowledge of your existence, an omnipotent Will that can transform all of your pain and suffering.
4. You pretend to be less than what you really are as a strategy to eventually become conscious and awakened!
5. The crazy, unconscious you is the one who creates your "knot," your problems. The awakened you is the one who will solve all of the problems. In other words, you contain the solutions to the problems you have...but those solutions are not found in the same place that the problems were created.
6. Space is curved. This means that you may not be as far away from an object as you think. How far away from the crazy you is the awakened you? It's not as far away as you think!
7. So, relax. And for a moment, consider that inside of you lies everything you have sought outside of you. For right now, you don't have to know how you will access it. For this moment, quietly choose to be comforted knowing that it is true.



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Lesson 1: The Real Issue

January 2017

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We are now moving from preparation to engagement, using Sri Aurobindo's "Savitri" as our guide. Starting now, I will refer to Sri Aurobindo simply as SA.

Have you noticed so many times when you're upset, you know that the reason you say you're upset is not really the reason? Have you noticed the "special" suffering you carry around with you that nothing outside of you can heal? Have you ever felt even for a second the separation not only from others but from yourself and from the world, like being stranded on an island? I'll be more specific: have you ever observed the meaninglessness of life as you have lived it?

Existence precedes experience. Before you ever knew pain or joy or suffering or orgasm or fear or victory, you existed. Before you ever experienced cold or warm or thirst or contentment or hate or love or prejudice or justice, you existed. Before you were able to see, taste, hear, touch or smell, you existed. You had to exist before you could experience anything.

"Why camest thou to this dumb deathbound earth,
This ignorant life beneath indifferent skies
Tied like a sacrifice on the alter of Time,O spirit, O immortal energy,
If 'twas to nurse grief in a helpless heart
Or with hard tearless eyes await thy doom?
Arise, O soul, and vanquish Time and Death."

SA spells out the issue when he states about each of us:

"To wrestle with the Shadow she had come
And must confront the riddle of man’s birth
And life’s brief struggle in dumb Matter’s night.
Whether to bear with Ignorance and death
Or hew the ways of Immortality...
To win or lose the godlike game for man,
Was her soul’s issue thrown with Destiny’s dice.
She must disrupt, dislodge by her soul's force
Her past, a block on the immortal's road,
Make a razed ground and shape anew her fate."

It is ttime for you to plow up some dirt and shape anew your fate. But is it possible that there could be another destiny for your life and body other than struggling its way through time with the yoke of life on its shoulders only to end in the unannounced moment of death? Is your will truly powerful enough to cancel out the past and restore your "vanished" form? What is your "vanished" form to which SA refers? Why are you oblivious to the fixed patterns of your life? Why do you not know the "motive and plot" of your life and what you are here for?  How do you start "anew" your fate and destiny? Why would your true Self of limitless power have created this little self whose world centers around ignorance and death? What is the real issue?

The world is an effect. The world is not the cause. Your life (effect) is the outcome of you (cause) and no one else. You are the cause and it turns out that the real issue begins with the issue of existence. The question of existence lies at position of cause. It is the starting gate in your physical experience. Existence precedes experience.

"What now we see is a shadow of what must come.
The earth's uplook to a remote Unknown
Is a preface only of the epic climb
Of human soul from its flat earthly state
To the discovery of a greater self
And the far gleam of an eternal Light.
The world is a beginning and a base
Where Life and Mind erect their structured dreams;
An unborn Power must build reality
A deathbound littleness is not all we are:"

The significance of your existence has already determined your destiny: that your unlimited potential and destiny is something that already exists inside of you as being part of who you are in the same way that the DNA of a tiny acorn contains the blueprint of the giant oak. You can take million different classes (experiences) but you don't get to choose the curriculum. The curriculum is set. The curriculum is your existence becoming what it is intended to become. How you get there is up to you.

You were born whole and complete, lacking nothing and the significance of your existence is to experience that wholeness. In fact, you are more than just whole and complete. YOU ARE THAT. But you are but "...a shadow of what must come." So, what is your Shadow with whom you must wrestle? It is the unconscious choice of pretending that you are NOT THAT in order to experience that you ARE THAT. God lies within, not without.

Let me make it easy for you. Let's say you are married. Every night you come home from work and tell your partner that you love them...but you don't do anything about it...but you tell them. You get busy, you do chores, you exercise, you watch TV, you do a million things but show them that you love them. Your partner knows that you love them. But they don't want the KNOWING...they want the DOING. And if you don't do it, they will leave you...even though they know that you love them. Existence is the same thing. It seeks the experience that it knows that it is. It knows that you ARE THAT. But you don’t. And when it cannot experience that Self which it knows its Self to be, it will substitute a false self, a "deathbound littleness" as its yoke to one day force the realization of who it is out in the open. In order to experience what something is, you have to experience what it is not.

You are a flaming warrior who has come into existence to force open the doors of ignorance and unconsciousness that has kept you bound lifetime after lifetime after lifetime. You are endowed by your very existence to possess the will and power to lift the burdens of your life and experience your Self for who you really are.

“A flaming warrior from the eternal peaks
Empowered to force the door denied and closed
Smote from death’s visage its dumb absolute
And burst the bounds of consciousness and Time.”

The riddle of existence is a process of amnesia in which you deliberately forget to know why you are here. Your experiences are designed to cause that understanding to be known. This is the purpose of your unconscious Shadow:  to lead you to a conscious existence. The real issue is that YOU ARE THAT...and you don't know that. The real issue is that God is within you, not outside of you.

Your experiences have been the carefully selected events in your life that you chose and drew to yourself in order to reveal the nature of your existence. They are neither accidental nor unintentional. But you are not your experiences! They are the very tools of your awakening, the very yellow brick road that will lead the way Home for you to at last reveal and confirm what you have secretly known your whole life. YOU ARE THAT. Your very existence confirms it. You must "...disrupt, dislodge..." the past by your soul's force, raise the ground of your present life and shape anew your fate. You are by your very existence living proof that you are THAT…or you could not be here in the first place.

The version of reality that you have is simply a psychosomatic version of reality that came about as a result of your experiences, all the while believing that you are your experiences. This is your Shadow, your own personal darkness. The Shadow’s purpose is to help you bring about your life as you would have it be, to not only know but experience heaven on earth…because that is what you are. You are here to bring about the divine on this planet. Your existence confirms it. And you don’t know that. This is the real issue.

To change the world, you must change yourself and this is where the real issue is.

"Whether to bear with Ignorance and death
Or hew the ways of Immortality,
To win or lose the godlike game for man,
Was her soul’s issue thrown with Destiny’s dice.”

“Why camest thou to this dumb deathbound earth?” If you thought you had problems before, you ain't seen nothing yet.

Welcome to the land of the living.


  1. 1. Existence precedes experience.

  2. 2. Your existence is the curriculum. Your experiences are the classes you take.

  3. 3. The curriculum is the same for all human beings. Your classes are unique for you.

  4. 4. Your existence defines you. Your experiences do not. They're just experiences.

  5. 5. Your experiences exist within a field of duality in which the way that you learn what something is by experiencing what it is not. Ex. Before a person becomes what they are capable of being, they first become what they are not. Said another way, in order to learn the value of love, you will experience rejection or abandonment or loneliness.

  6. 6. Your existence comes with an internal "roadmap," providing you with all the tools you need to live the life of your choice in the same way that an acorn contains the DNA of the giant oak.

  7. 7. The life you are living is but a shadow of your true power.

  8. 8. Why did you come here, why do you exist? You came to wrestle with the shadow in order to realize and experience your divine nature.


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