Let Go. Be Empty.

Wednesday 9 January, 2019

This collection of quotes from various posts (mostly from last year) are meant to serve as reminders in my daily practice of letting go, remaining in the emptiness, and experiencing all of life in the purity of its momentary essence, without expectation, judgement or attachment. There are also quotes from the days in November when I was too tempted by my mind. They have been included here as a reminder to remain vigilant and not get cocky.

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One Year, Three Retreats

Wednesday 26 December, 2018

When I began to write this review of 2018, I couldn’t see much beyond the two main experiences of the year. The Silent Retreat, and what can perhaps be referred to as the Angry Retreat. Each provided a breakthrough which has the potential to transform my life. They help to emphasise this year as both the culmination of 19 years of work, and the beginning of the rest of my life; a turning point in my development, taking me further away from my conditioning and towards the emptiness which has so informed my writing since the end of last year.

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Courage In The Darkness

Saturday 22 September, 2018

Whenever I see something growing through a crack in the pavement, I remark on life’s incredible ability to flourish in places you might not expect. That thought occurred to me again, the morning after a lunch experience in a pitch-black restaurant, and a talk by a man who had gradually lost his sight. In the absolute darkness, after enjoying an unseen meal with a roomful of voice-only strangers, Joost’s own voice rose up above the general chatter.

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The List

Wednesday 16 August, 2017

What follows is a list of many of the most important pieces from this blog. The list makes it easy for you to understand at a glance what is necessary in this work. It takes you through the process of self-development and self-realisation – from awareness, observation and reflection, and back to awareness – offering you guidance on what to expect along the way and what you can do to help yourself.

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We Think We Know

Saturday 27 May, 2017

We think we know, but we don’t. We think we have a good idea of how life should be – our own life, other people’s lives, life in general – but we don’t. Given the magnitude of it all and the small scales we operate on, how can we possibly think we can see the biggest picture? From our narrow perspective it’s unfathomable, and with our arrogance of assuming we know, we restrict ourselves and make life unnecessarily complicated.

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As one participant highlighted during the seminar: when we surrender, there is no need to fight anymore. All too often surrender is seen as a weakness, but if we are able to see the empowerment which lies at its heart, then we feel encouraged to practise it more and more. And when we surrender our attachment to who we think we are, or how we think life works, or what we think we deserve, or what we think others expect of us, then we liberate ourselves: we become free to do whatever makes us happy, to give everything we have to whatever is in front of us and remain calm and balanced because the results – whatever they are – do not affect us.

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The Doubt Will Always Be There

Thursday 21 August, 2014

It is said of Richard Feynman, the great 20th century physicist, that when he lectured, his students understood the subject matter clearly, yet as soon as they left the lecture hall their understanding evapourated. I had a similar experience when I wrote and posted the previous entry, ‘Desperate To Belong’. During the writing of it, I had clarity about the injunction of not being allowed to dream and the reasons behind my struggle of wanting to conform but also go my own way. Yet as soon as I published the post, the sadness I had written of returned, followed inevitably by the familiar doubt that maybe I am making the wrong choice.

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This post is about a couple of people I know, whose opinions of personal development have changed dramatically over time. Their examples add further weight to the argument that this work is applicable to everyone’s life. They were both clear about their stance from the very start, communicating their thoughts with an immediacy which suggested they had already given the subject some consideration. In time, however, they changed their minds. One did so over the course of a couple of years, the other in the space of a few months. My role in both instances was to accept their initial assertions and carry on regardless. I never set out to change their minds because the nature of this work means there is no point in persuading someone when they are not interested or don’t believe it can help them. All I know is the difference this work has made to my own life and how much sense it makes when observing the human condition.

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Surrender Can Be A Strength

Saturday 25 January, 2014

In the end he ran away. Literally. I stood at the door and watched him hurry down the pathway and beyond the hedge, as if he were late for his next appointment. A few days later he left a message to say he would not be returning. Robert was an engaging character: erudite, highly educated and a master of language. Unfortunately, as far as his development process was concerned, his intellect (or rather his cleverness) was his downfall. Karaj highlighted it many times to him, but it wasn’t enough.

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Surrendering to Your Process

Monday 16 January, 2012

This post emphasises how important it is to surrender to whatever process we find ourselves in, whilst all the time maintaining a belief in ourselves and trusting that everything will work out well in the end. None of which, however, is an excuse to sit back and do nothing. We have to generate and sustain a certain amount of momentum in order to create the possibility of success. And if we do that, then a turnaround in our fortunes can happen in an instant.

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Stay With The Confusion

Saturday 26 July, 2003

My day began at 09:00 with a planning meeting with Karaj. It finished at 03:00 after yet another of many conversations with him about my confusion surrounding my place in the house and whether to stay or leave. Throughout the day there were eight of us present (Karaj, Michelle, Serena, Calvin, Dev, Priya, Ishwar and me) and we spent the day digging the utility block and having supervision sessions.

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Too Arrogant To Surrender

Wednesday 23 July, 2003

We (Karaj, Shona, Serena, George and I) sat together for an hour and talked about my current situation. English culture means no allegiance or loyalty, hence the bets that I won’t stay. We never surrender to anyone and never surrender to ourselves. (Indians have loyalty). English arrogance is the problem.

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It’s All Bollocks

Thursday 3 July, 2003

Awake. Tired and run down. Headache. Supervision with Karaj. I just need to keep going (for another couple of years). Karaj and I went for a long lunch. We talked about where we are. It’s good that we are constantly attacked (see The Way of Transformation). Either we will win or we will lose, and if we lose it means closing the place down, which means we win anyway.

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A Garden Altercation

Saturday 31 May, 2003

I couldn’t get to sleep last night because of thoughts about Kuldip’s assault on me, yesterday. Karaj told me that if I hadn’t challenged him, then I would have fucked the space up today and it would have seemed like my fault when all the time it had been Kuldip. That’s why it is important to protect myself.

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