OUR COMMON JOURNEY

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OUR COMMON JOURNEY

 

Stone: Depends on the subject, but all Centering stones help.

The Mantra: Om

 

The Key:

 

The only real Journey is the inward one to discover

who we really are, all others are merely

preparations for it at best.

 

Rainer Maria Rilke agrees:

 

The only journey is the one within.

 

Are you on any other journey?

Why?

Don’t be deceived.

 

a) Rumi introduces the issue with a question not easy to answer:

 

Oh you who’ve gone on pilgrimage – where are you,

where, oh where?

 

and then asks:

 

And you? When will you begin your long journey into yourself?
One day you too will have to enter your final journey.

 

It will be the longest journey you have ever taken.

It is the journey to find yourself.

 

Have you begun your long journey into yourself?

To which extent?

If not, what are you waiting for?

However, not everyone agrees: for example, according to the Course in Miracles:

 

There is no journey, but only an awakening….What need have we

but to awaken in Him?

 

Wu Hsin agrees

 

There is no journey, as such.

 

It may not seem so, but we are always back where we started.

What we were in essence, and what we will be

in essence, is what we are in essence.

 

The key word is “as such”

What he means is that

 

Our essence, the Atman, is already at the end of the Journey

and has always been.

 

The Journey is real only for the surface self.

 

This is why

 

once we have recognized our false self as such

and achieved our inner rebirth our Journey

is already accomplished.

 

Wu Hsin also said that:

 

The journey from self consciousness to Consciousness itself is a reversion

of the natural movement toward the object, toward other,

 

and it shifts the direction toward the subject,

toward the Knowing.

 

Matsuo Basho adds:

 

Every day is a journey and the journey itself

is our own home

Is the journey itself your own home?

 

b) First or later, in this life or a next one,

 

you also will have to begin your ultimate Journey on an unknown road beyond

all you ever imagined, for all too familiar roads ultimately

lead nowhere at all, or to yet another death.

 

never forget that

 

You the traveler and at the same time

also your destination.

 

Of course you are.

But are you aware of it?

 

The accomplishment of our Journey means becoming

what in our essence we already are:

 

This is the highest conundrum of our lives.

Strangely, very often what usually happens at the beginning of the Path is that when we realize that

 

all the roads that we have taken so far, even those passing through very pleasant landscapes are really dead ends.

 

It is when we feel utterly lost that we begin

our real Journey at last.

This is what St John of the Cross meant when he said that:

 

If a man wants to be sure of the road to journey on, he must

close his eyes and proceed in the dark.

 

How so?

St Teresa of Avila made a very fascinating observation which opens the vista to infinite possibilities:

 

The feeling remains that God

is on the journey, too.

 

To which extent can you feel the wonder of this?

That’s all?

Well, what really matters is that you are on the journey.

Ever those who are not aware of it are.

But then it will take them much longer to reach our destination.

Mooji warns that:

 

Sometimes we are more attached to the journey than we are to the discovery. Because the journey happens in the mind.

 

The discovery happens in the heart.

 

Mind and body have taken the journey, but the real home place

is your own heart. It is infinite and so wherever you go,

you are always Home.

c) The Course in Miracles goes to the core of the issue:

 

As you perceive the holy companions that travel with you,

you will realize that there is no journey

but only an awakening.

 

Rumi had the right attitude:

 

The soul’s Journey time and place involves not.

From my soul how to journey my body learnt

but now such way of journey renounced:

 

secretly and without forms travels,

though with a form still.

 

Of course,

 

the end of our Journey isn’t a physical place the realization

of the ultimate Reality which we secretly ARE.

Which is your vision of the ultimate Reality?

Why?

How does it make you feel?

Najm al-Din Kubra adds that:

 

Each time a light ascends from you

towards you a light descends…

 

It is the substance of light in Heaven

longing for you, to your light drawn

and towards you descending. This is

the mystical Journey’s secret.

 

d) The I Ching hexagram FU, the Return means to reappear, to restore,

to recover a path to our Source through Enlightenment.

Part of the main sentence reminds us that:

 

they don’t go anywhere because

their Journey is within.

 

At those times the gates were closed at noon; merchants did not move about, and none went anywhere outside.

Noon is the peak of the day, and the merchants are those who sold all they had to buy the Pearl of great price mentioned in the Gospels:

The lines speak also of a new beginning, innocence, passing from the darkness to the light, coming back to the Path and separating chaff from the wheat, that is, the superficial from the essential, which leads to a progress by a return to the ‘right Path.
One of the lines
 
warns about the tendency to be easily distracted
from our Journey.

 

Abdul Khaliq Gayadwani reminds us that:

 

Your Journey is towards your homeland. Remember that you

are traveling from the world of appearances

to the world of REALITY.

 

When Burhanuddin was asked if the road has any end or not he replied that:

 

The road has an end, but the stations have no end,

for the Journey is twofold, one to God

and one IN God.

 

The Kabuli:

When the Kabuli was asked by a prospective pilgrim which provisions he should take for his Journey to Mecca and Medina he replied:

 

Provisions? In my own pilgrimage I brought with me as many

as twelve peacock feathers, but I gave them all away

to other pilgrims on the road!

 

What does this tell you?

Which provisions do you bring on your pilgrimage Journey?

Why these and not others?

Are they REALLY necessary?

 

The Veil:

 

The Veil is the very antithesis

of our Journey.

 

The Dreamgame:

In the Dreamgame, our common Journey is the best possible OPPORTUNITY.

Keep in mind that the time that you have to reach your destination in this lifetime is limited, therefore

 

do not waste time, like most do, in distractions and unnecessary

activities that distract you from your aim.

 

In one of Vijay’s poems there are these comforting lines:

 

Ever certain your journey was:

even when so alone felt you and lost

every your upward striving drop by drop

into the secret cavern of your heart gathered

transmuting into Light…

 

The Devil’s Advocate:

The “Journey”, the “Path”, the “Way”….are just mirages, empty DREAMS all!

 

The Khdir:

 

One day you too will have to enter your own ultimate journey,

the most interesting you can ever embarked upon,

the journey to find yourself.

 

Now is time for us all to come home

back to the Divine.

 

Words of Power:

 

The only true journey is

the inward one.

 

It is never whatever we do or not do that matters,

but the Journey.

 

You have chosen your own infinite Journey

long before starting it.

 

How?

 

Do not embark in useless journeys, for they are

indeed in vain.” Course in Miracles

 

On how many useless journeys have you embarked so far in vain?

Why?

What did you learn from them, if anything?

 

“The journey is the reward.”

Tao saying

 

“This is how you came here, like nameless star. Journey across

the night sky with those anonymous lights.”

Rumi

 

“The only journey is the one within.”
R. M. Rilke

 

Living it:

Vijay’s own Journey began when he left his native town at the age of fifteen and for many years traveled around a lot.

Upon reaching a town that he had never visited before he walked its streets all day, all night, as if forever, stopping only sometimes for a coffee or to eat something, as if wishing to exhaust all streets to their end, or perhaps to find the only one which leads elsewhere, outside the labyrinth of the world, perhaps a way to INDIA, which was still just a name to him, walking all night towards a faraway light or another which always turned out to be merely the neon sign of some hotel, cinema, restaurant or bar…

 

Only when everyone will realize that the only real journey

is the inward one there will be

peace upon Earth.

 

From The Quest:

 

An instant only may such Journey take or many eons

 

during which the Heavens may shift, the Waters’ tides

beyond recognition change, but without such Journey

truly nothing are we, a thin smoke in an high wind,

a lonely cry in an unending Night, darkness

unto an even deeper darkness lost….

Still, ever certain our journey was: even when so alone

felt you and lost, every upward striving drop by drop

 

into the secret cavern of your heart gathered,

transmuting into Light…

 

From such a long journey giddy still,

looking back all his past strivings

absurd, impossible now seemed:

so many tangents,

 

false bypaths and dead ends to reach at last….

…where he had always been!

 

the Wheel slowed down then was utterly still

all was forgiven and he forgave himself as well

 

across a stupor immense, his heart a star going nova

the Great Awakening.

 

Question/Ko’han 1 to 3:

Are you enjoying your own Journey?

If not, why not?

If not, how will you change it?

Question/Ko’han 4 to 7:

According to the Buddha it is better to travel well than to arrive.

Why?

Question/Ko’han 5:

 

Our ultimate Journey begins when we ask ourselves

this most basic question:

who am I?

 

How important is to you to find it out?

Question/Ko’han 6:

Lo Tzu said that

 

Good travelers have no fixed plans

and are not intent on arriving.

 

Do you have any fixed plans?

Why are good travelers not intent of arriving?

Lao Tzu never spoke nonsense, don’t take this “not intent on arriving” too literally.

Question/Ko’han 7:

Good travelers not intent of arriving because

 

in their concern to arrive most tend to forget

the journey itself.

 

Do you often forget the Journey itself?

 

Mahavira has the last word and it is a very comforting one:

 

If you have started the Journey

you have already reached.

 

In which sense have you already reached?

 

Practice:

 

1) Consider these words from the Quest:

 

The destination of the Journey is yourself,

the spiritual healing of yourself,

 

for you cannot reach such a destination while still carrying the heavy burden

of your suffering, discontent, regrets, countless desires, etc…

 

this Journey requires to fearlessly letting go of all that you have ever been

which is not in the Truth, and can feel like dying at first

but then being reborn in peace and bliss.

 

Be prepared to leave everything behind you, for none can discover new horizons without leaving behind one’s familiar spaces,

   

and a certain point leave behind

even the journey itself.

 

2) Meditate on these words of Ahmad Hatif:

 

You will journey beyond the narrow limitations of time

and place and will pass into the infinite

spaces of the Divine World.

 

What ear has not heard, that you will hear, and what no eye has seen, you shall behold. Finally, you shall be brought to that high Abode, where you will see One only, beyond the world and all worldly creatures.

 

To that One you shall devote the love of both heart and soul until,

with the eye that knows no doubt, you will see plainly

that there is nothing save God alone.

 

3) Meditate also on these words of E.J. Gold:

 

Unknowingly we voyage in a labyrinth, a macro-dimensional maze

of living electrical force, cloaked by a thick layer

of ordinary life.

Our most serious obstacle is the uncontrollable urge to convert everything to the familiar, to reduce it all to the level of the primate brain; to reject the living, breathing reality of the totality of all possible attention.

 

Contemplate:

 

1) These verses from the Quest:

 

Something that Virgil omitted not to discourage travelers

is that upon his return to Ithaca disappointed Ulysses was:

faithful Penelope had been to him, true enough

but couldn’t compare to the fascinating women

that in his travels he had known; his vineyard’s grapes

a bit sour tasted, not like he remembered them at all:

the ocean’s endless horizons he now missed

and soon boredom set in.

 

What he hadn’t understood is that our Journey

will never end.

 

2) These verses of Tolkien

 

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.

Now far ahead the Road has gone,

And I must follow, if I can,

Pursuing it with eager feet,

Until it joins some larger way…

3) This Invocation of Rumi:

 

Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshipper, lover of partings.

it doesn’t matter: ours isn’t a caravan of despair.

 

Come, even if a thousand times you broke your vow, come, yet again,

come, come. To the Sky we go, you coming with us?

 

To Heaven we went, friends of the angels and now there to our Native Land

return; higher of the sky are we, of the angels nobler:

why not to go always beyond?

 

Do you have any good reasons not to accept his Invitation?

If yes, which ones?

Ha ha ha ha!

 

Haiku:

 

In such an infinite, mysterious Journey

with no maps or road signs I see myself

its final destination the Divine is,

the most wondrous Journey of all!

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