Monday, 19 August 2013

Monstaville Book I. Chapter 26


“Bring light, and evil vanishes in the twinkling of an eye. Strengthen your character and let your nature shine forth, radiant, glorious, ever-pure, and awaken it in everyone you meet.”
- Vivekenanda.

3 August 2002.

This afternoon, on the way to the shops, some Africans were handing out leaflets on Christianity. I looked and said I haven’t got time for religion. The guy who offered me the leaflet said, ‘God bless you.’ I walked off smiling. It actually carried a message and feeling of love. He wasn’t concerned or insistent, just saying, ‘okay but God bless you anyway.’ A refreshing change from the evil, rude African megaphone Nazis on the roundabout who make passers-by’s lives hell of a Saturday!

I reflected - it is good and wise to bless everyone you meet regardless of whether they fit into your world or not.

Bless people - silently. Say, ‘God bless you’ (think it) and ‘peace be with you.’ Even as an instant response to all that people say, especially their negative comments.

Restore everything to Light.

Transform everything to Light.

A General Explanation of the Buddha Speaks of Amitäbha Sütra by Tripitaka Master Hua (Sino-American Buddhist Association, Inc., CA, U.S., 1974).

                You say, ‘I can’t stand criticism. I can’t stand it.’ Who are you?
                ‘If they hit me, I can’t bear it. It hurts.’
                Really? If you put your attachments down and see through them there is neither pain nor not pain. Who is in pain? What, exactly, hurts? If someone hits you, pretend that you bumped into a wall. If someone scolds you, pretend that they are singing a song or speaking Japanese. How can they scold you if you don’t understand them?
                ‘Are they speaking Spanish or Portuguese? French? German? I’ve never studied languages so I don’t understand...’ They can scold you, but it’s nothing. In general, once you see through, break, and put down the attachment to your body, you win independence.

Contemplate feelings as suffering. Feelings may be pleasant, unpleasant or neutral; from the point of view of the three sufferings, unpleasant feelings are the suffering within suffering, pleasant feelings are caught up in the suffering of decay, and neutral feelings are the suffering of process. Wake up! Everything you enjoy is a form of suffering. If you know that pleasure is suffering, you will not be attracted to it. I often say:

                Enduring suffering puts an end to suffering;
                Enjoying blessings destroys blessings.

If you endure your suffering, it will pass. If you enjoy your blessings, they, too, will pass. Contemplate feelings as suffering...
                If you’re attached, you can’t be free. Why? Because you’re attached!


If you ignore them (evil-natured Bhiksus, laymen and ordinary people) they will get bored and leave. (p.60).

When one of my disciples became extremely sick, he said to me repeatedly, ‘I’m really suffering.’
                I said, ‘The more suffering you undergo, the better. The more you suffer the more you will understand.’

Retrospective inserts.

Invictus (Unconquerable)

“Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.”

- William Earnest Henley, poet, author, editor and critic (1849-1903).

“As a child, [Henley] suffered from a tubercular disease that later necessitated the amputation of his foot. During his nearly two-year stay in a hospital in Edinburgh (1873-1875), he wrote poetry about his experience in the infirmary, his thirst for life, and the struggle against his disease.” (BBC News,, 11 June 2001).

“Know how sublime a thing it is to suffer and be strong.” - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.” - Henry Wordsworth Longfellow.

“Always remember that pain is a great awakener and pleasure is a tranquilliser. Suffering helps more than all the happiness put together. A single moment of suffering is more valuable than the whole of a life of smug pleasure and comfort and convenience. Why? Because you want to cling to pleasure. With suffering you are thrown off. You would like to run away from the whole thing, to escape somewhere. But if you stick, a certain integration will happen to you. In that very sticking to it, standing there and not escaping or running away, but facing it, you will become strong. For the first time the soul will arise in you. You will feel that something has settled. You are no more just parts. All the parts have fallen into place and they make a pattern. Gurdjieff used to call this the real birth of the ego. Before it you have many egos, many 'I's', but not a single 'I'. Whenever a person is ready to face a suffering which always comes after a dream is shattered, then that suffering is tremendously valuable.” - Osho.

“A man who is master of himself can end a sorrow as easily as he can invent a pleasure. I don't want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.” - Oscar Wilde.

“He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still.” – Laozi (or “Mastering others requires force; mastering the self takes strength.” Also, “He who knows others is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened”). 

“He who reigns within himself, and rules passions, desires, and fears, is more than a king.” - John Milton.

“Life is 10 per cent what you make it and 90 per cent how you take it.” - Irving Berlin.

“The mind is its own place, and in itself, can make heaven of Hell, and a hell of Heaven.” - John Milton.

From Caine’s half-brother Lin Wu’s letter (read out in court): “Do not clutch at pain and the pain will pass.” - Kung Fu (Season 1, Episode 3, ‘Blood Brother,’ 1973).

Mantak Chia’s ‘stance of courage’ evokes energy and power, he says. This equates to the general posture taught to us in the internal martial arts class: not too straight and stiff for that wastes energy, and not slumped or depressed since this structure blocks energy. A relaxed, balanced posture enables us to be more conscious and to face what is in your life; try not to get stressed by it. With a good flow of energy, it is easier to retain your will, use your intelligence and do your best. This helps.

‘Knowledge is power’: understanding certain things about yourself, your ‘enemy’ and how to deal with their behaviour. Naturally, there is a higher and lower way. Aim high, but no one is perfect!


I was born to never die
To live in bliss, to never cry
To speak the truth and never lie
To share my love without a sigh
To stretch my arms without a tie
This is my dance, this is my high
It's not a secret, can't you see
Why can't we all live in ecstasy

Ecstasy Ecstasy
Why can't we all
Live in Ecstasy.

Without a guilt, without regret
I am here to forget
Tainted memories of imagined sin
In every friend, kith and kin

We have come to celebrate here
The getting rid of every fear
Of every notion, every seed
Of any separation, caste or creed.

This alienation, fragmentation, abomination
Of separation, exploitation, isolation
This cruelty, hysteria, absolute madness
This anger, anxiety, overflowing sadness
Disrupted ecology, wanton destruction
Diseased biology, nature's obstruction
Endangered species, environmental pollution
Holes in the ozone, defying solution
Is not knowing the spark that lights my interior
Is the same fire, glowing in every man, child, and mother superior

We have come to celebrate here
The getting rid of every fear
Of every notion, every seed
Of any separation, caste or creed.

Feeling free, let us fly
Into the boundless, beyond the sky
For we were born to never die
To live in bliss, to never cry
To speak the truth and never lie
To share our love without a sigh
To stretch our arms without a tie

This is our dance, this is our high
It's not a secret, can't you see
Why can't we all live in ecstasy

Ecstasy Ecstasy
Why can't we all
Live in Ecstasy.

- A poem by Michael Jackson (from Dancing The Dream, Doubleday, London, U.K., 1992).

Spongebob Squarepants: ‘The Bully.’

You have to be made of a spongy substance like Spongebob so you can absorb all of Flats the flounder’s blows. Spongebob ceases to be terrified of the bully at boating school when Flats follows him around all day punching him every which way only to discover that Spongebob never feels a thing (except for a little tickling sensation). We may not be able to achieve this physically, but psychologically we can certainly can.

“Don’t cheer me my fellow classmates. Flats was the real victim here. A victim of a society that’s riding down a violent road to nowhere; a road I call ‘Violence Road.’”

“We got our money’s worth tonight.”
“But we paid nothing.”
“That’s what we got!”
                - Waldorf and Statler from The Muppet Show box (Season 2, Episode 9, created by Jim Henson).

PLAY: ‘(Don't Let 'em) Grind Ya Down’ by Motorhead (written by Lemmy Kilmister, Eddie Clarke and Phil Taylor, from the album Iron Fist, 1982).

“Laughter rises out of tragedy when you need it the most and rewards you for your courage.” – Emma Bombeck.

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