May 25, 2011 Wednesday Night with Aaron

Aaron: Good evening. My blessings and love to all of you. I am Aaron. It's very good to see so many familiar and loving faces here. Thank you for joining me tonight.

I want to talk to you tonight about something that's been on my mind for quite awhile, and was further triggered by the recent annual spring sangha meeting and the finishws questionnaires that went out before the meeting, the feedback from people.

What draws you to Deep Spring? we asked. Some people said meditation. Some people said spiritual inquiry and Aaron. Some people even said, “I don't get meditation,” or I don't get Aaron.” So it was clear that some people were seeing a duality there. Not everyone, not even many, but some.

When Barbara founded Deep Spring Center 21 years ago, at my suggestion we named it Deep Spring Center for Meditation and Spiritual Inquiry. I felt that both legs were essential, just as a butterfly must have two wings with which to fly. But I also did not want to force spiritual inquiry on those who came to learn meditation, nor to force meditation on those who came to pursue spiritual inquiry, but rather to present the material and help people to see it as an organic whole, so that each would reach in both directions.

We had 2 different classes in the beginning, on 2 different nights a week, gathered in Barbara's living room: a meditation class for those who wished to pursue the tools of meditation, and a spiritual inquiry class for those who wondered, “Who am I? Why am I here? What is this incarnation about?”

At first, most people came to both nights, about six or eight people at the start. Gradually, somewhere into the second year, new people started coming and more to one night or the other. There was still a core group that came to both, but there were people who said, “Oh, I'm a meditator,” or “I'm here to learn about spiritual inquiry,” and that was fine. For spiritual inquiry, we talked more about concepts, but what good are concepts if you don't directly experience them? It was rarely concept about what I call, “furniture of heaven;” that is, questions concerning the outer universe, but more, exploration of your inner universe. How do you love with kindness when anger is present? In the pain of your lives, how do you live with love? On the other night we focused on meditation practice, and people developed that practice, but I was not training people to be meditators but to grow into the unlimitedness of their true nature. We talked about dharma, such as the Four Noble Truths. People needed to get beyond the idea, “I am simply a meditator here learning a tool,” and begin to know that true nature as spirit and to understand their suffering.

After a number of years, it pulled together so once again that almost everybody was involved in both programs. We had three retreats a year and emphasized the value of them; almost everyone came to the retreats. It was a very cohesive group, and very close friendships developed. Classes were now three nights a week, and large, but there were more people coming for the meditation classes than Barbara could teach. And we needed classes at different levels. Then, in 1995,  Barbara began to train other teachers,

We had 2, 3, 5, and finally a dozen, meditation teachers, but there was still only one Barbara leading the spiritual inquiry. So many people began to come to the meditation classes and they never met Barbara; they never met me. “Who's Aaron?“ they'd say. “I'm a meditator.” Or, “Channeling doesn't make sense to me.” In this we got into a bit of duality.

Now, the core of what we are teaching is non-duality, so we certainly don't want to create or enhance duality in our own Center, or in the minds of anybody who works with me, yet each has free will to choose from among the offerings. We just let it be. For several years Barbara ‘s energy was so focused on the teacher training program, to fill that need, that she ceased to do any channeled workshops, and that side of the program became weaker.  But both of these tools are important.

You can meditate, truly persevere to learn the outer practice, yet with a skewed effort wherein there is still very much a “somebody,” an ego, trying to somehow escape its suffering. We can talk forever about the idea that you are spirit, angels in earthsuits, as I call this angelic presence that you are, here in this physical body, this everyday mind dealing with earth plane catalyst, but unless you experience your true angel-ness through the depth of practice, my words are meaningless; they're just words.

The fact is that the everyday mind, the everyday human cannot experience the angel-ness. You've got to meditate and move into a deeper place, a bit free of the mundane everyday mind, to begin to know who you are. Then the spiritual inquiry side of it makes sense, and you're able to take it further and use it truly as a way of growing and experiencing the unlimitedness of the world.

Through the years many of you have learned a deep choiceless-awareness meditation practice. What we teach here is not just concentration practice. That's easy, to focus the mind and stick to one object, which process can lead to some very blissful experiences. But when you end that one-focused meditation, whatever challenges there have been in your life, and your ways of relating to those challenges, remain untouched. Then the only option you have is to close yourself back up into that very concentrated space again. So you move into a habit of moving into the world, saying, “Oh no!”, and coming back into a deep quiet space that avoids the world.

But you are not here to avoid the world; you are here to be fully in and of the world. That's why you incarnated. You did not incarnate to get out of the world, you incarnated to live in and transform yourselves and the world. You brought whatever karmic energy with you, whatever old habitual patterns, with the intention of transforming them, transforming fear, hatred, greed and separation into love and connection. This is not a matter of getting rid of fear, greed, or hatred, but finding that right there with negative emotion is the innate lovingkindness of your being.

I think this is an erroneous distinction between meditation and spiritual inquiry. The meditator who is drawn to that practice through personal suffering, and looking for a path out of suffering, seeks his or her own freedom. But as practice deepens and you begin to know your interconnection with all beings, you discern that there is no path that does not include all beings, Then you begin to ask, “Who am I and why am I here? How do I best serve the suffering in the entire world? Why is there so much suffering in the human experience?”

This is what spiritual inquiry is about, beginning to find those answers.  You transcend the negative side of the human personality and get to know the innate lovingkindness. You start to find certainty that there is an angel in the earthsuit, in all earthsuits, and to understand that all of you have come, literally to transform the world through that knowing, But at first the talk is only concept.

It's helpful to talk about it as concept, but concept is not knowing. When you sit in meditation with the practice that we do here, a practice simply of being present with whatever is predominant in your experience, then knowing comes. As we sit, objects come into the field of consciousness. Sometimes the object is pleasant; sometimes it's unpleasant. Sometimes the body feels filled with ease and space; sometimes it feels cramped up or very agitated, filled with pain. And likewise the mind; sometimes the mind is calm and joyful, sometimes it's agitated.

The question is not, “How can I make my body always be calm,? How can I make my mind always be calm?” but “When the body and mind are not calm, can I be loving with these?” Because unless you can be loving with the agitated mind and body, how can you be loving in the agitated world and with the agitated others? Then you are shifted to the spiritual inquiry wing of the butterfly, remembering that you came to learn compassion. That insight inspires you to stay with the pain, and to learn.

That is the predominant object of your incarnation, truly to learn to open your heart to things as they are, because it is through that open heart that true transformation comes. I'm not talking here just about inner transformation, although that's part of it, but transformation of your world. When there is hatred and you hate that hatred, you don't transform it in any way, you simply add more negative energy. You don't have to love the hatred, but can you love the being who is caught up in hatred? Can you love the being who is caught up in fear?

That which is aware of fear is not afraid. That which is aware of anger is not angry. When something triggers fear or anger in you, there seem at first to be only two possible paths. Here is the trigger, and fear or anger comes, and then you feel, “No, no anger allowed here. I won't be angry.” Or, you act it out on somebody or on the self. These patterns go deep; you have practiced them for lifetimes. Neither are wholesome; neither lead to true healing for yourself or the world.

In the meditation practice you learn a third possibility through literally working with the practice in which one notes, “Here is the experience of anger,” or fear, I'm using those two as examples. It could be anything: impatience, greed, desire, confusion, anything. “Here is the experience of anger. Anger has arisen in this mind and body and I can feel its energy in the body. It's unpleasant. It's hot, it's burning.” There is strong aversion to this experience, and knowing,  “I want to get away from it.”

You see your habitual tendency when such energy comes, which might be to act it out and scream, or it might be to close down the energy field. Instead of doing either of those two things, you learn to simply take care of the anger. Breathing in, breathing out. Present with anger.

Recently Barbara was with a little boy. He was angry. He was sitting on his living room floor, scowling. Barbara said, “You look angry.”

“Yes,” nodding his head, “Yes.”

So she said, “May I sit with you?” and she sat down next to him.

He said, “Yes.” He said, “I'm taking care of my anger.”

She said, “Can I sit here with you while you take care of it?”

“Yes.” And after 5 minutes or so, finally his body relaxed and he smiled and he said, “I'm all done. Let's play now.” This is what you are learning to do.

In my lifetime 2000 years ago, the lifetime I've talked some about in the Essene community in which Jeshua lived, these trainings were given to young children. All young children in the community knew how to take care of their anger, their fear, their greed, their impatience, and so forth. This was so basic to the trainings. But you in this culture have not had the opportunity to learn this, so that's where we started 21 years ago.

At the same time as people were learning these skills in 1989 and 1990, there were many talks about who you are and why you are here, talks that some people might interpret as “New Age mumbo jumbo.” I've heard a lot of that phrase, not so much from Deep Spring people, but in different places. What is “New Age mumbo jumbo”? Is it mumbo jumbo to talk about states and stages of consciousness, which only now are beginning to be understood? Long ago it might have been considered mumbo jumbo to talk about a round Earth. “Oh, the Earth is flat. How can you talk about a round Earth? If you keep sailing, you'd be on the bottom of the Earth hanging upside down. That's absurd.”

What is often viewed as “New Age,” that is, ahead of its time and inexplicable, is simply the cutting edge of science. We go down to Brazil and watch the Entities incorporated in John of God literally cut into the body to remove a tumor or whatever. There's no anesthetic, there's no sterilization. Some people say, “Impossible,” or  “Mumbo jumbo!” Not many do, though, because they watch and they see that the person who is thus cut experiences no pain, and that the tumor is removed and that they heal. It's the cutting edge of science. The Entities are using very high vibrational energy. The doctors here in the US are only now beginning to understand how to use lasers and other tools, ultrasound and so forth, as part of medical technology.

So what I've attempted to do, and Barbara also, through the years, is to bring some of these tools like work with chakras and energy, harmonics, understanding of karma, or of states and stages of consciousness more into the daily realm so that you can fully understand them and bring them into your lives.

So many of you believe that you have limits, but there are no limits, only what you hold because of your beliefs. If you believe that something cannot heal, then of course it cannot heal. If you believe that you are incapable of something, then of course you're incapable of it. You limit yourself because of the belief. I'm sure each of you has heard stories of somebody who, for example, lifted a thousand pound automobile off of a person on the ground. Could any of you lift a thousand pound automobile? And yet people have done it.

One night when we had a number of children here, I asked them, could they lift J in his chair? J is a large man. They all said no. I said, what about together, do you think you could? They looked at each other, “Maybe.” I said, “I think you can. Will you try it for me?” So they all gathered around J together and they lifted him up in the air. This changed their belief system. If I think I can do it, probably I can do it.

I speak from my experience, not from concept. I have lived in many different lifetimes, different cultures, male and female bodies, different religions and belief systems. Some of them were very open-ended, though you might think of them as primitive. For example, aborigines in Australia. We would run, traveling across the countryside, and one person might fall, with  his leg into a hole-- snap! You could hear the bone crack. He would fall to the ground in pain.

What is a bone? Is there anything solid there? It takes on a certain integrity in its molecular structure, but it's just molecules that have adhered together. If it was a compound fracture, we would have to pull the leg straight and realign the bone, but that was it. Then we would sing to it, use harmonics. Not singing as some kind of mumbo jumbo but the art of harmonics, which again today is only beginning to be understood medically. Through harmonics we would invite the molecules to reintegrate themselves with each other. Quite literally within a half an hour that human would be capable of getting up and running on his leg again, but usually we would just camp there for the night and allow him rest because his body had undergone a severe trauma. Knowing the need for sleep, providing some wholesome food and rest, and the next day, off we went.

It need not take 6 weeks for a bone to knit. Why should it take time? Time is a concept. There is no linear time; all time is now. If the bone can be healed in 6 weeks, it can be healed now.

Barbara speaks of a similar experience breaking her toe right here. It was a clean break. The doctor said 6 to 8 weeks to heal. It was taped and she was told, “Keep off of it as much as possible.” It was summer. So she lay on her bed in the cabin with her foot in the air, ice on the foot, feeling much frustration because it was the beginning of her summer. “Oh, my summer's going to be ruined.” I said, “Oh, do you think so?” “Well, 6 to 8 weeks.” “Do you believe everything you're told? Why should it take 6 to 8 weeks to heal?”

I invited her to sing to the toe. “Sing what?” “Whatever you think the toe wants to hear.” Toning, just “OM... OM... OM...” whatever sounds felt happy to the toe. She had nothing better to do; there she was in her bed, she couldn't go anywhere. So she sang for a number of hours every day for 3 days. She was in a lot of pain at night, hard to sleep, but the third night she slept soundly and when she woke up on the 4th day and put her foot down, there was no pain. I said, “it's healed.”

The x-ray not only showed that it was healed but it showed no scar tissue. It showed no break where the original break had been. Three days. Why should it take longer? Later she asked me, “Aaron, could I have done that in an hour?” And I said, “Of course. Not just 3 days.” But I pointed out to her she was just learning.

At the Casa we have seen something similar, when there is a physical incision that does not bleed, and that heals quickly, because the knife has not cut into any molecules but separated them, opened them to provide inner access, then closed again.  

This is not far different than direct experience of emotional wounds and still knowing and living your innate wholeness. There may be belief, “I am inadequate” attached to the mind from childhood. In meditation one sees the innate perfection of every life form. Then one begins to question the belief of inadequacy, asking, “Is that so?” each time the belief rises to the surface. Gradually, with kind persistence, the limiting belief shatters.

Here is another overlap of meditation and spiritual inquiry. The Inquiry sees the concept and the meditation learns the practical by moving into the direct experience, be it of the body cells or of the mind and its movements. Through the mingling of these two wings of the butterfly, you are finally beginning to emerge into the deeper, unlimited and radiant truth of your being.

We've been talking a lot recently about the akashic field. There are 4 elements: earth, air, fire, and water, and a fifth element we might call ether or akasha. Akasha is the ground out of which the other elements express themselves. The akashic field is the container-- container is too limiting a word, but there's no other word in English-- it's the space in which the akasha is found. This may sound to some like mumbo jumbo but no more so than gravity sounded before Newton pointed it out.

Everything is expressing constantly out of this akashic field. I talked about the integration of traditional dharma and what we're calling spiritual inquiry. In the traditional dharma we talk about the Dharmakaya. The word “kaya” means “body” so Dharmakaya is truth body. Nirmanakaya is the form body. Sambhogakaya is the wealth body,  the bridge that holds them together. This is traditional dharma. In meditation centers all over the world they talk about Buddha nature and everyday experience and the place where they come together. Meditators have no trouble with that. The akashic field is just a different articulation of the same thing.

You are not here in these incarnations, most of you, simply to become traditional meditators but to learn your unlimitedness, to learn your power, to learn your radiance, to finally take positive control of yourselves and the world and create the Eden that you planned for this world and these incarnations. Eden isn't something that's thousands of years off; it's right here, today, once you master these skills. World peace is not something impossible to attain. An end to starvation is not impossible to attain. An end to physical disease is not something impossible to attain. But most of you have been brainwashed into thinking it is.

Let us look further at how practice in the akashic field can help us to create more wholesome life on earth. Barbara has been working for the past few months with a mix of different experiences in the arms and shoulders. The x-rays show she has rather severe osteoarthritis in her shoulders. The Entities in Brazil have helped work with the shoulders so she has good movement in them, without pain, but pain radiates down her arms and the tendons. It was pointed out to her that the connective tissue in the body is tense, reacting habitually to old trauma. This is no different than what happens with each of you in the bigger body.

K, would you push me?  (K pushes and Aaron pushes back) When you're pushed, the habitual pattern is often to push back. This is a mammalian reflex. The body repeats that reaction over and over and over again; there are thousands of pushes every day. So the whole body becomes so conditioned to tense up every time there's some kind of a push, not necessarily a physical push but the kind of push of a person who disagrees with you and is angry, or a traffic jam, or the flooded basement, everything tenses up. Just as the mind learns certain patterning, the body learns that kind of patterning.

With meditation practice, one can observe the mind going into what we call tension, or contraction. We can see what this 4 year old was stating: seeing anger, “I am taking care of my anger.” One can learn that.

The physical body is the slowest of the bodies. Spiritual, mental, emotional, and finally the physical body tags along at the end. It is the slowest to unlearn old patterning, also. So the old trauma of a thousand lifetimes is bound up in the cellular tissue of the physical body, and the habit energy of the physical body. The physical body doesn't even have to feel pushed, it's just the reaction to all of the circumstances of life. Not even a hard push. For Barbara, one result is shoulder pain, and the body tensing up against shoulder pain.

She has been watching how she can literally move into the akashic field. The image I've offered her is to see herself snorkeling in a beautiful bay. There's lovely coral that she wants to see, beautiful reef formations of vivid colors. But there are also thick seaweeds. She can't just yank out the seaweed or she'll damage the coral. But she can gently swim through them. If you swim through seaweed abruptly, it coils around you, but if you move your arms very gently, it simply floats aside.

So she's been practicing that. Every time she moves the arm and there's some kind of strong pain in the tendons, she stops and she goes to the place that's free of the pain. Right there with the pain is that which is not in pain. Right there with that in which the connective tissue is bound up and binding itself tighter is that in which the connective tissue is open. She is literally teaching the body a new way of being with any catalyst such as pain or tension. I said the physical body is the slowest learner; gradually the body is responding. Gradually there is less tendon and muscle pain.

It's a gradual learning because the body is slow to remember. Many things help. Massage and opening of the body help a lot. It reminds the body how to relax. Floating in the hot tub helps. She does a lot of gentle movement, there's no pain and it reminds the body that it knows how to move without pain. Gradually the body will heal itself because the body has the capacity to heal itself.

This is dharma. It's no less dharma than the traditional statement, for example, of the Four Noble Truths, which is the statement: suffering exists, the causes of suffering, that there is freedom from suffering, and the path out of suffering. Suffering exists when she can't move her arms, feels frustrated and enacts that frustration with further tension. The causes of the suffering are tension and old habitual patterning. There is freedom, and learning the path out of freedom, which in this case is the retraining of the physical body, just as in meditation you are retraining the mind. There's no difference.

So all of you are learning these infinite possibilities. There are so many of you incarnating at this time who are old souls, who have literally come into the incarnation with the intention to help bring this whole Earth into a higher consciousness. For millennia, the Earth has been bound into a much lower, more fear-based consciousness. Now the Earth has the opportunity for a dramatic shift out of that gross consciousness and into and beyond causal consciousness.

In Barbara's new book, Cosmic Healing, on page 261 there's a chart of consciousness. There's a whole chapter on consciousness. We talk about gross, subtle, causal consciousness states, and beyond the causal. The stages of magical, mythical and rational consciousness are part of gross consciousness. That's where you've been and that's where a lot of the world still is.

Magical consciousness is like the consciousness of a small child. The child is angry at an adult in the family. The adult gets sick, and the child is afraid, “I caused the sickness.” There's a sense of the magical about it. “I have that power.” Well, at some level it does have that power, and it understands it has that power, but it doesn't really have that power. It did once. It could again when it matures.

Many of your fundamentalists are very caught in magical consciousness. It's the consciousness that says, “We are right and everyone else is wrong.” The consciousness is “us against them”; this is the level of consciousness that has caused so much hatred and destruction in your world for millennia.

The one you know as Jesus, Jeshua, came to teach the possibility of a higher consciousness, to let go of the “me versus them”. Love one another, you are one another. Open your hearts to each other. Rather than an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, which is a fundamentalist level of consciousness, return love to hatred.

Gradually much of the world grew out of this magical and mythical consciousness and into rational consciousness. And it's rational consciousness that rejects the spiritual inquiry lessons. It fears them. It fears them because they challenge its status quo. What if there really are these possibilities?

But more and more of you in meditation are seeing the truer picture. You are experiencing in yourself your interconnection with everyone and everything. So on one level you say we're each separate, but then you have a meditation in which the body seems to dissolve, separation dissolves. There's a deep, direct experience of unity, and you cannot deny that experience and say, “I imagined it,” because it's so profound. So that gradually there's the move into subtle consciousness, and then causal consciousness.

As you open to subtle consciousness, you begin to be able to access the akashic field, just begin. Slowly we move through the subtle realm into the causal realm in which we can directly access the akashic field. As you learn the tool of accessing the akashic field, you have the power to change things.

This power must be earned. At some level each of you realize the enormous harm you can do if you have the power to create from the akashic field but do not yet have the control over the emotional body, so that when anger comes and you have that power, you destroy with the power. Because on the whole, you are well-intentioned, you deny your power because there's a fear, “I'm not yet ready to own that power,” and to some degree that's true.

This is why we put the work together, why it's so important to do this inner work to find equanimity with heavy emotion, and the non-need to act out or suppress heavy emotion, but to take care of it as our young friend did. As you master that skill and trust yourself, if heavy emotion comes, you know, “It's okay. I don't have to be afraid of it. I will not misuse my power to destruct because of heavy emotion.” Then it becomes increasingly safe to experience your power. Then you find the unlimitedness of your power, and it's only then that you start to truly be able to create the Eden you hope to create in the world and in your own lives.

I hope this talk helps you to see the big picture, here. It's okay to focus on one piece of growth, to focus on a meditation practice and develop it, to focus on understanding conceptually this whole idea of angels in earthsuits. But eventually because you truly are those angels in earthsuits, and because your intention is to grow in compassion and wisdom, you're going to need to put it together.

This is what I hope for you, that you begin to trust your radiance, your love, your capacity to hold all of this. You are the hope of the world, you and millions of others like you around the world who come together in what we might call dharma centers or light centers with the intention to transform the various kinds of energies that come through you into light, and use them for good in the world.

That is enough for an opening talk. I'd like to ask you just to sit. Close your eyes, breathe, sit quietly for a minute. Let yourself move into a deeper space, into the One Who Knows, that is the center of you. The everyday human doesn't know anything. He or she is confused. But somewhere deep inside is that One Who Knows.

Rest in that space. Now bring your heart to it, that deep wisdom, that deep love within. Breathing in, breathing out... I'd like you to lift both arms. Be the butterfly. Perhaps one arm feels stronger than the other; perhaps they feel a bit equal. We could call these wings, the wings of wisdom and compassion, or we could call them the wings of meditation and spiritual inquiry, or any other number of names. What we are after is balance.

Feel the place where you come into balance. You might feel it somewhere in the naval or the heart center. Breathe into that center. Bring forth your highest intention not only to do no harm but to do good, to be of service in the world. To truly enact loving energy in the world, for the highest good of all beings, yourself included.


I want you to bring your hands to the solar plexus. It's the seat of power. It's directly connected to the heart. Put one hand at the solar plexus and one at the heart and allow yourself to feel how each informs the other. The solar plexus is the seat of power, the heart is the seat of love.


Bring the hand from the heart up to the third eye. Let the energy flow through from the third eye, through the throat, the heart, and into the solar plexus, connecting the deepest wisdom and seeing with the seat of power.


Bringi the hand up to the crown of the head, opening yourself to the infinite energies of the universe, allowing them to come into the body.


Bring the other hand down to the base chakra, down to the pubic bone. Feel the earth energies coming in through the base, the heavenly energies coming in through the crown. Feel these energies running through and coming into connection in the heart.


Now from this place of increased centeredness, again let the wings move. Feel yourself soaring high above the earth. You are infinite, unlimited. See the shining radiance of yourself and those around you, this whole Earth filled with radiant beings, this room filled with radiant butterflies. Keeping the eyes closed, feel that radiant energy from your neighbors in the room.


Why limit yourselves? This is what you are. Are you ready to live that fullness? Sometimes you fear, “I'm not ready to be that responsible.” If you are not willing to do the work and take the risk that perhaps you are ready, you are simply condemning the Earth to more eons of darkness. Which way is it going to be? You are not expected to be perfect, only to do your best. Each of you is here to learn. If you already knew it all, you would not be here.

You may put your arms down and open your eyes.

There was a lifetime in which I was with a group crossing a high mountain range, from a country in which there was severe drought, over the mountains into a country in which there was a more hospitable climate. People had been dying of starvation and foul water because of the drought. We knew the only hope was to cross the mountains. We had a guide who knew the mountains well. We put our trust in him and followed him. Babies were being carried and the elderly carried on litters. It was a very hard journey, but we had faith we could cross this range and move into a climate that was more hospitable to life.

In the dark of the night, high up on an icy peak, our guide fell and broke his leg. In that time and place, he did not know how to sing his leg into wholeness again. He could no longer lead us. Almost none of the group had ever crossed that mountain range. I had crossed it only maybe 2 or 3 times. I was not a seasoned guide. I did not know the pathways well, but at least I had crossed them mountain. Everybody said, “You lead us, please.”

A false pride would have said, “Of course I'll lead you, I know the way.” But I didn't know the way, but only had some vague concept of it. But if I refused to lead it was clear that everybody would die, because nobody else had even the remotest sense of the way.

What within us steps up and says, “Okay, I will try.”? I didn't say, “Sure, I'll lead you,” just, “I will try. I will do my best.” That's all that's asked. If you have that commitment to do your best, to stay open day by day to the new possibilities and to attend with love to that which is difficult, you'll find that you can do far more than you thought you could do.

I'm going to open the floor here to questions and answers.

Q: I have 2 questions. What is the difference between the element of ether and akasha?

Aaron: The difference is so subtle that I would prefer not to speak of it! What is the difference between water and ice?

Q: Temperature.

Aaron: Temperature. Ice is frozen water. I would not say ether is frozen akasha, or vice versa, I'm only using that as a vague example. Akasha is the base out of which ether will express, just as ice is the base out of which, if the temperature is warm, water will express. They are different but they are also not different.

The space aspect within the akasha is what allows the fuller expression of what we call ether. So ether is more the space and energy components of akasha, but not different any more than water and ice are different. Akasha is the ground out of which the ether expresses, just as earth, air, fire, and water express out of the akasha.

Q: Would Aaron please describe the nature of the intelligence of the akashic field?

Aaron: You ask challenging questions! The nature of all of your being, the nature of the divine essence itself, is intelligence and love. Sometimes in dharma study we talk about direct expressions of the Unconditioned, that there's a sound, nada, that cosmic OM. There's a radiance. There's a scent. There's an energy movement. These things simply are, they are direct expressions of the Unconditioned. For “the Unconditioned” we can substitute the word God, or Divinity, Goddess, That Which Is.

As its innermost nature, these expressions are the Unconditioned and radiate out. We don't talk so much about intelligence and love because it's harder to experience those, but they are also direct expressions of the Unconditioned. You can hear the cosmic OM, nada. It sounds like crickets chirping. It's not something you hear with your ears but within the soul. You can see the radiance, but the intelligence is a bit harder to grasp, to say, “This is the intelligence.” So we can say, “This is nada,” but not so easily, “This is the intelligence,” or “This is love.” Love is more connected with the energy and you can feel it a bit, but intelligence is much harder to pin down. But it's a direct expression of the Unconditioned.

Let us talk about the relationship between the Unconditioned and the akashic field. I spoke earlier of the 3 kayas: dharmakaya, nirmanakaya, and the bridge between them, sambhogakaya. Truth body, form body, and the wealth body, the connecting bridge body. If you have 100% pure underground spring, absolutely pure water, that bubbles up to the surface, and you take a long-handled scoop and reach it in, you shift the absolute purity of the spring. You cannot directly enter that spring without changing its 100% pure nature.

We cannot directly access the truth body from the outer form body; there has to be an intermediary step. I like the example of the swimmer in a submarine. The submarine has gone under water, the person has his diving gear on and now he wants to go out into the sea and swim. He can't just open the door; there must be a vestibule into which he steps, which is then flooded with water. Then the outer door opens and he swims out into the sea. To return, he swims back into the vestibule, the door closes, the water is emptied out, and then he can come back into the submarine.

Everyday mind cannot go directly from the Unconditioned to the conditioned. In terms of Buddha Dharma, in the scripture Abhidhamma, which is a very precise teaching, various forms of consciousness are spoken of. The Buddha had a very deep understanding of consciousness.

Abhidhamma speaks of various levels of consciousness. The consciousness that is capable of experiencing the Unconditioned directly is different in nature than the consciousness that's capable of experiencing the conditioned realm, mundane citta, or consciousness. Citta is the Pali word for consciousness. Mundane citta take a mundane object. Supramundane citta take a supramundane object.

So the meditator who is shifting from the mundane object into the supramundane object at first completely loses touch with the mundane; she may move deeply into an experience of the supramundane, but does not know to bring that out into the everyday world because it's a different level of consciousness. Gradually and with practice the meditator learns how to stay connected with both, but it's a gradual process, learning how to keep mundane and supramundane consciousness open simultaneously so that you're perhaps 99% into the supramundane but without losing touch with the mundane world.

Taking this back to your question, then, to understand that deep intelligence of the supramundane, you use the akashic field. The akashic field is the vestibule. The akashic field is within the Unconditioned and everything that expresses out into the world is within the akashic field. So it becomes the sambhogakaya. the bridge between the supramundane and the mundane.

Within that space, you can experience the intelligence directly. Otherwise you can only experience the relative world, mundane world, concept of that ultimate intelligence. The akashic field is what holds it.

It's all very logical, really. But right now for most of you, it's concept. In meditation, when your meditation takes you into the direct experience of the akashic field and you start to explore within that field and find your way around, then it won't be concept anymore. You can talk about it forever without having a direct experience of it. You've got to sit quietly and meditate.

Other questions?

Q: How do you move forward in consciousness, and how do you heal negative patterns from the ego?

Aaron: First I would refer you to my prior book, Presence, Kindness, and Freedom, in which I speak about the answers to that question in depth. We move forward in consciousness in 3 ways. First, with intention. It cannot be an intention based in fear, but from the loving heart that deeply aspires to service to all beings; that loves the light and aspires to bring forth that light in itself and in the world.

Second is the trust in the capacity of the human to do it. And third is simply the practice of meditation and working patiently through a thousand instances of negativity, watching negative thought or energy arise, watching the habitual way of relating to it with fear or contraction, noting contraction. Because of the intention, being willing to just breathe and hold space for that contraction-- the little boy taking care of his anger.

After however many repetitions, habit begins to shift. The habitual pattern changes from one of contraction around negative experience to spaciousness and patience with it, seeing it simply has arisen from conditions. It will pass away. I don't have to be afraid of it. I take care of it. That which is aware of anger is not angry. I don't hide in that which is aware and suppress the anger, but I hold both together. I take care of the anger without self-identification with the anger. And as you practice that, through the meditation practice, through mindfulness and so forth, over and over, gradually it takes.

Many years ago, Barbara was at the train station at Ann Arbor with one of her sons who was going on a class trip to Chicago. She was not one of the parents going so she was seeing him off. She went to leave the platform to go back to her car when somebody tapped her on the shoulder. She put one foot down off the platform, onto the parking lot, and turned to speak to the person. Unknown to her, the first car there in the parking lot started to back up. Her foot was down on the parking lot surface. The car backed up. People started to scream, “Watch out! Watch out!” But of course Barbara doesn't hear. The driver didn't know what they were shouting at, but finally stopped. She stopped with the car on Barbara's foot!

It was excruciating. The first reaction to that kind of pain is usually to pull away. You know if you touch a hot stove, you pull your hand away. The depth of her practice led her to just stop and hold space for the pain. The woman got out of the car, screaming, “Oh, what should I do? Look what I did! Oh my!!” Frantic.

Barbara, from of the depth of her practice, was able to say to her, “Get back in your car and pull the car forward off my foot.” Somebody else got in the car and pulled the car forward off the foot. This woman was too distraught.

When Barbara got to the ER and they x-rayed the foot, nothing was broken. They said had she pulled even a little bit, tensed even a little bit, many bones would have been broken. But because she was able just to keep the foot relaxed, nothing was broken.

I'm not suggesting that Barbara has powers that none of you have; all of you with training can learn this level of mindfulness, how not to be reactive to situations. It's very possible, very much within your abilities. Just practice it.

Q: Could you speak about achieving greater clarity with our personal relationships? I'm sure nobody else has that issue!

Aaron: Your personal relationships really have been co-created as your teachers in this plane. We've been working in the 2-year program with a beautiful practice in which we watch the person who constantly irritates, The “famous person” who, as soon as they come along, your day is ruined. And how you can stop and learn to figuratively, bow to that person and say, “Welcome. What are you here to teach me today?” instead of “Oh no!”

So the first step is to recognize that those people who are the most difficult people in your life are your teachers of wisdom and compassion. Often they are people with whom you have, I was going to say struggled, but not necessarily struggled-- shared past lives, sometimes very peaceful, sometimes as beloved friends, but with the intention in this life to knock into each other a bit. “I'll come to challenge you; you come to challenge me.”

It's useful when there are such challenging relationships to ask yourself, “In this moment, how can there be deeper compassion for both myself and the other person?” An error that people make is to try to have compassion for the other person but not for themselves. But you must include yourself in the field of compassion, otherwise there's just an “I should”-- “I should have compassion,” and that doesn't work. But when you can really open your heart to your own pain in this moment with this challenging person or situation, then that open heart can relate compassionately to the situation or person.

It may not transform the person; the person may continue to be as seemingly rotten as they've always been, but at a certain point you know, “I don't have to put up with this anymore. If it's time to end this relationship, I can end it.” Or if it's a family member, like a very difficult parent or child, you understand how to make more spaciousness and not get so caught up in negative reactions to the person.

I want to show you a practice here. This is the Tai Chi pushing-arms exercise that we've done many times. (not recorded) I am demonstrating with the pushing arms exercise that when I am pushed, I may not have a choice about whether I'm going to be pushed, but I have a choice about whether I react. That if I armor myself, then I'm moved to push back. The more I push back, the more the aggressor pushes back at me, until it builds up into war.

I also don't fall over on the ground and just let them steamroll over me, but I release the energy over and over and over, until the aggressor becomes exhausted with being aggressive. I don't absorb the energy into myself, I release it. One can learn how to do that. That's part of meditation practice because when you sit on your cushion or your chair, and some old anger or thought comes to push you, you have the clear opportunity how to see how you've habitually related to that kind of thought, and to learn that there are new possibilities, much more wholesome possibilities. So we begin this learning just sitting on the cushion, and then we take it out into the world. The most difficult relationship is usually with yourself.

Again, I would refer you to Presence, Kindness, and Freedom. Much talk in there about this. Cosmic Healing also has quite a bit in it.

Other questions?

(long pause)

Let us close here, then, with a guided meditation...

I'd like to try something with all of you, if you're willing. It will involve stacking the chairs up against the wall and moving the cushions so the floor is open. If you'll do that, then we'll have a short meditation.

To begin with, I'd like each of you to face a partner... Designate an A and a B. Person A, turn your back to Person B. Person A has their back to person B. Person B, hold your hands toward Person A's back, just holding energy toward the back. Come closer and closer but not touching, until Person A feels that energy. When Person A feels that energy, raise a hand.

Now turn around, switch places. The giver becomes the receiver...

Okay. So all of you have felt how it feels to feel that energy. You are literally feeling that energy coming to you through the akashic field. Now, here's my experiment. I haven't tried this with a group. We'll see how it goes.

Let's space you out around the room, half of you standing in place and half of you walking. (counting off) Stander, walker, stander, walker... (etc). Okay, all of those I've designated as standers, space yourselves around the room...

Okay. Now, standers can keep their eyes open. Walkers, close your eyes. All the walkers are going to walk slowly. It can be very tiny steps. You can hold your hands up in front of you. Try to feel the energy of a stander or another walker and go around the person.

Go into the akashic field. Try to feel that energy within the akashic field.

If two walkers contact each other, you may stop before you actually contact each other. Yes, two walkers just felt each other's energy and stopped...

Allow yourself to move into that field and almost to see the room. As I described, swimming through the seaweed, gently moving the seaweed aside and seeing the coral. Allow yourself to enter the field. See how deeply you really can feel the energy around you...

Most of the standers have big smiles on their faces, watching this show. They will change places in a minute...

If you see a walker about to walk into a wall or other obstacle, please gently point them the other direction. The humans have a lot more energy to be felt than the posts in the room...

So it's not perfect, but most of you are finding that you do feel the energy when you relax and allow yourself to enter the akashic field.

Now I would ask everybody to open their eyes, the walkers to spread out, the standers to close their eyes and become the new walkers. Walkers with eyes closed. You may wish to put your hands up in front of you to use the hands, the receptivity from the palms, although the whole body is receptive. You're used to feeling through the palms of your hands...

The standers consciously sending out energy. Let it come up from the solar plexus and send it out...

(bell, bell, bell)

Thank you. So you've all had a taste of playing in the akashic field. You can do it.

Thank you for being with us tonight. It's been a delight to share this with you. I'm going to release the body to Barbara so she can say goodnight.

(session ends)

PAGE  16