Siddhartha

Siddhartha Begins His Spiritual Journey

“Siddhartha was thus loved by everyone. He was a source of joy for everybody, he was a delight for them all. But he, Siddhartha, was not a source of joy for himself, he found no delight in himself. … Dreams and restless thoughts came into his mind, flowing from the water of the river, sparkling from the stars of the night, melting from the beams of the sun, dreams came to him and a restlessness of the soul, fuming from the sacrifices, breathing forth from the verses of the Rig-Veda, being infused into him, drop by drop, from the teachings of the old Brahmans. Siddhartha had started to nurse discontent in himself, he had started to feel that the love of his father and the love of his mother, and also the love of his friend, Govinda, would not bring him joy forever. … The sacrifices and the invocation of the gods were excellent—but was that all? …

“Not to be looked down upon was the tremendous amount of enlightenment which lay here collected and preserved by innumerable generations of wise Brahmans.—But where were the Brahmans, where the priests, where the wise men or penitents, who had succeeded in not just knowing this deepest of all knowledge but also to live it? Where was the knowledgeable one who wove his spell to bring his familiarity with the Atman out of the sleep into the state of being awake. …

“Was not Atman in him, did not the pristine source spring from his heart? It had to be found, the pristine source in one’s own self, it had to be possessed! Everything else was searching, was a detour, was getting lost.” ~Hermann Hesse

Siddhartha Begins His Journey

Siddhartha had grown up in a spiritual family. His father was a Brahman. So he knew the importance of spiritual development. He knew it was necessary. So he practiced his meditation diligently. He prayed and fasted. But eventually, like many today looking around at the conventional churches, realized that these daily practices were not helping him progress. They were doing little more than taking up time and keeping him under control. He mentions at one point that these spiritual practices are doing nothing more than helping one hide from the world. He realized that they did no more than alcohol or drugs do for many. He was little more than a drunk who hid from reality and real spiritual growth in ritual fasting, praying, and meditating.

Siddhartha and Asceticism

So Siddhartha then decides to join a group of ascetics. He gives up his fine clothes and good meals and begins to wear rags ad eat little. He soon discovers that this path isn’t really doing any more than the constant praying and meditation.

Then he hears of Gautama Buddha. Everyone is saying this man has become a true Buddha, an enlightened one, yet has rejected asceticism as the best path to follow.

Siddhartha and Buddha

So Siddhartha, along with his best friend Govinda, leaves the ascetics and goes off in search of this new enlightened one, Gautama Buddha. They find him and listen to him give a public talk. Both Siddhartha and Govinda are impressed with Buddha’s speech and whole personality. He is clearly one who has achieved a high level of enlightenment. This causes Govinda to join the group of devoted followers who pledge to listen to and follow the teachings of the master. Siddhartha, however, does not. He meets with Buddha and explains to him that, while he recognizes that the Buddha is an enlightened one, he has learned from Buddha’s own teachings, that simply listening to the talks of an enlightened one will not bring about his own enlightenment. He must seek enlightenment within himself and not from others. Buddha smiles a faint agreement and wishes him well.

What Siddhartha Learned

We hear so much these days from spiritual people on social media that religion is about hearing other’s experiences, spirituality is having your own. Yet those same people ask others for recommendations of books and videos that can bring them enlightenment. That is doing exactly the same thing as the religious people, just with different books! And following meditation methods with little or no evidence that they accomplish anything except turning people into docile sheeple is no different than the religious people attending weekly services that have become empty ceremony. They are correct in rejecting the empty ceremonies as a path to true enlightenment, but too many of them are simply following a different, yet equally empty, spiritual path.

Siddhartha learned that we must awaken our own spiritual self and learn from that true self. All we can get from books or teachers are methods for doing that. The teachers cannot give us truth, they can only point us in the right direction. And hiding from the world in drugs, booze, or meditation isn’t going to do that.

More to Come

This is only the beginning of Siddhartha’s journey. I’m sure I will have more to say about it as it continues.

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mind reading

Mind Reading: We all Do It

“The simple forms of telepathic phenomena have received the name ‘Mind Reading’ and by some have been regarded as something not quite within the class of real telepathy. This last impression has been heightened by the fact that there has been offered the public many spectacular exhibitions of pseudo mind-reading, that is to say, imitation or counterfeit mind reading, in which the result has been obtained by trickery, collusion, or clever artifice. But, notwithstanding this fact, genuine mind-reading is actually a phase of true telepathy. …

“I will remind the student that he will learn more by a half-dozen actual experiments at mind-reading than he will by reading a dozen books on the subject. It is very good to read the books in order to get the correct theory fixed in mind, and also in order to learn the best methods as taught by those who have had a wide experience in the subject; but the real ‘how’ of the matter is learned only through actual experimental work.” ~William Walker Atkinson

Psychic and Spiritual

The first thing I want to clear up before getting into the subject of telepathy is the matter of psychic and spiritual matters. They are not the same thing. That needs to be repeated for many. Psychic is not the same as spiritual. If you look at it as climbing up flights of stairs that represent levels of consciousness, psychic activity is one flight above our normal materialistic state, and spiritual is another flight above that. So we do have to climb up to the psychic level before we reach the spiritual. The problem is that many stop at the psychic level and go no further. This is a mistake. That said, let’s get on with exploring Telepathy.

Telepathic Mind Reading

At the time when Mr. Atkinson was writing his books, telepathy was probably defined a little different than today. The simple definition now, according to Merriam-Webster, is: “communication from one mind to another by extrasensory means”. That would clearly include what is often called mind reading. But as Atkinson points out, it only includes real mind-reading, not the many mind-reading stage acts that are done with trickery.

We All Do It

Many people think that telepathy is either a special talent that a small number of people have. Others think it is something that has to be learned and developed like studying most other subjects. While that is true for conscious mind-reading, the truth is most, if not all, of us, do it subconsciously all the time.

I can’t prove that. I haven’t conducted extensive, scientific experiments on it. But I have seen enough evidence of this subconscious mind-reading to accept that it happens all the time. I have written about this before, but let me repeat just one example.

Have you ever been driving down a quiet country road at night and looking ahead, you see something strange just off the road? Perhaps you see a witch standing there. Or maybe a bear. But when you get closer, you laugh when it see that it is just a rock, bush or tree stump. Have you ever had that happen when there is a lot of traffic on the road? I think the answer is no. I certainly haven’t. And the reason for that is this subconscious telepathy that we do all the time without being aware of it. If there is another car a short distance ahead of us, those in that car see the object first. Once they know exactly what it is, their minds broadcast that information. We pick it up and see the correct object right away. We never see the witch or bear because those other minds told us it is just a tree stump or a rock.

If you can except that all of us are communicating telepathically on a subconscious level, it makes it easier to learn to do it consciously and intentionally.

Beyond Human Mind Reading

But if psychic communication is not spiritual, why bother learning it? One reason has already been mentioned. Because the psychic level of consciousness is the first step towards the spiritual. The other, more important reason, is that we use something similar to mind-reading to communicate with spiritual beings: angels and Light Beings. Although telepathy on the physical level is mind-to-mind communication and communicating with spiritual beings is soul-to-soul, I think learning one helps develop the other. Of course, we don’t want to spend to much time and effort on developing psychic abilities such as mind-reading. That is likely to cause us to take root on that level of consciousness (allegorically speaking), and fail to move on to spiritual levels.

Do it Yourself

Mr. Atkinson is correct in saying that we will learn more about mind-reading by practicing it rather than just reading about it. That idea isn’t limited to mind-reading. In fact, it is true of almost everything. It is definitely true of spiritual development. You can read books that teach techniques for spiritual awakening, but you don’t awaken by reading the books. You don’t gain any significant spiritual knowledge by reading books. You have to practice spiritual techniques. You have to practice until you raise your level of consciousness so high that you connect directly with the source of all truth and knowledge. Then you will learn how inadequate any book is at teaching truth and reality.

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