February 4, 2014 Tuesday, Brazil

Tuesday, February 4, 2014, Brazil, gathered in the pousada meeting room.

Barbara: The first question here is about crystals, clear ones vs. those with an inner pattern. Aaron is saying that a crystal is a sentient being. It becomes a friend. Some friends are easier to be with than others, but sometimes the ones that are a little bit more challenging teach us more. Some are just ones you can hold dear, like that kitten (one of the group has adopted a baby kitten ad she is here in the room with us) . Some push your buttons, as Barbara would put it. The perfectly clear crystal can remind you of your innate clarity, but it may not challenge you to do any work. He says, either one is fine.

Q: But this one is, I think I like it better because you picked it out for me.

B: He says he feels that it's suitable to you, but it's always your decision, not his. Others?

Q: After our talk about the allopathic medication, I noticed that I still feel resistant to it.

B: Aaron says perhaps by the end of your stay here you will no longer need it. Why not wait and see?

A: (conscious channeling; not incorporated. I am Aaron. If there is resistance, begin to ask yourself if the resistance is coming from a place of fear or wisdom. If you're standing on the edge of a cliff and somebody says, “Come on, why don't you jump off?” it's not fear that says, “No, I don't think so, thank you, but I'll just stay here,” it's wisdom. It's compassion for the self.

However, if you're walking on a path and need to walk over a few rocks to cross a stream and you think, “No. “I'll get my feet wet, and I might slip off and get my body wet.” It's not a rushing torrent, but yes, if you fall you'll get wet. You can feel the difference, how fear could say no versus, “I don't have any clothes to change into. I'll probably not be able to balance on those rocks and am likely to get soaked. So I think I'll walk down the stream a ways and see if there's a bridge.” Can you feel the difference?

Fear versus kindness. So please look at the resistance, the nature of the resistance. If you see fear, begin to ask yourself, of what am I afraid? Some of these medications have different side effects. Sometimes it's not wholesome to take them. Last year Barbara's doctor recommended some kind of medicine for her, sent the prescription to her pharmacy. She picked it up. She read about some of the potential side effects, and then she looked it up on the internet, and she said, “No way. There's no way I want to take this.” It was not fear; it was just a strong inner knowing. The small good that comes from this is very over-balanced by the possible harm. I say no to it. On the other hand, another medicine might not have such harmful side effects, and might have the possibility to do a lot of good. Then what is the fear about?

Sometimes some of you have an attachment to doing your healing without allopathic medicine. Why? Some of these medicines are just herbal formulas, developed in some way. One is not better than another. What does your body need to help it come into balance? Is there some level where you are still attached to something about the ailment? I'm not just speaking to Q, here, but to all of you. This was a constant theme with Barbara at the beginning. I don't mean when she first came to the Casa but 40 years ago. She hated the deafness, but she was also attached to it. What does it protect you from? In what way are you using the deafness or any malady as a crutch, as a way of avoidance of something that's even more frightening?

So that's what I would ask each of you to look at, in the areas where you both invite healing and feel some resistance to healing and to the tools for that healing. I pause.

B: For me, I'm adding something here; this is Barbara. Way back at the beginning I began to see that much as I hated the deafness, it also gave me a place to not have to be with people's suffering. Not to have to be with people's anger. It was very hard for Hal in the beginning. When he would lose his temper about something, he'd yell at me and I'd say, “Could you please repeat that?” That's getting the last word! So it gave me some kind of power around anger. And I really had to do my work to investigate and release all of this before it was clear and I was ready to say, “I choose to hear.”


Q: Some people have an easy time seeing spirit, hearing spirit, feeling vibration and energy in crystals and things like that. Those who do not have an easy time, is that because they have not raised their vibration, or because it is their past, or because of something else?

A: It is a number of things. Perhaps not having sufficiently raised the vibration is part of it, but any being who wants to connect with spirit and makes that request will receive guidance as to how to raise the vibration. When Barbara was first connecting to me, first she met me but there wasn't a clear connection. Then a not-quite-as-high vibrational entity began to work with her. Because its vibration was lower, she could hear it more easily. It offered her various visualizations with light and energy to help clear the chakras and raise the vibration. So she could feel my presence, but until she did that work she could not understand my thought as clearly.

There are other reasons, though. Some of you are simply more caught up in mundane reality. I'm thinking here of a story someone told me, that she got up in the morning with a determination to weed her garden. It had become overgrown, many weeds. So she went out early in the morning before the sun was hot with her trowel and fork and other tools and began pulling out weeds. There were also beautiful flowers in the garden, but as she told it to me, she must have spent two hours out there, come inside, and her husband said, “It looks great, and the flowers are so beautiful.” And she thought to herself, “What flowers are blooming? I never saw them.” He says, does that answer it for you?


Q: I have read in one of your books or online, I am not sure, that you said when the soul is getting closer to returning to the source, to God, it kind of sees its own imperfections more, enlarged... It's hard to find a question. This is useful, right?

A: It's useful, but it's also a reminder that it also has to see its perfections.

Q: It's so hard (painful?) to see our imperfections at such a stage of wanting to return to God.

A: I am Aaron. All of you have had the experience metaphorically and actually at some point, of “leaving the Garden,” leaving that sacred space. You have known what I spoke of the other day as the crystalline essence resting in light, completely at home and connected. And suddenly you're out, looking back from a different perspective at this radiance. In getting out you got spattered by mud a bit. There's just this bit of distortion. Then there's a feeling of hopelessness.

St. John of the Cross writes about this very beautifully. I'll ask Barbara to see if she can find the direct quote.1 He speaks about the soul who, instead of recognizing its own light, begins to recognize the divine light, and wants so terribly to return to that light that it begins to try to scour itself, to scour the shadow off itself.

So this is why we practice as we do with both attending to the distortions with kindness, not fix-it energy but kindness. But attending, nevertheless. If you spill something on your shirt, you don't say, “Oh! Look at that mess!” You just gently wash it out. It's kindness to yourself and to the shirt. But this is why we teach as we do the simultaneity of knowing the light. This is how the work with the Mother becomes so helpful, awakening you to your own divinity.

I'm going to let Barbara speak here for a minute.

B: This is Barbara. An exercise we did in class maybe 10 years ago and we're going to do again this spring. We  asked everybody to draw a garden, with an image of what the strong, vibrant, beautiful plants were in the garden, what the weeds were, and the place where the weeds seemed to block the beautiful plants; and to label them all. “Here is patience, but here is self-centeredness. And if I want patience to flourish, I have to pay attention to that self-centeredness. I see that as a weed, but I don't have to destroy it, just to cultivate patience until it grows way out over the self-centeredness.”

All semester people added to and changed their gardens, many of them on big pieces of mural-type paper. We weren't concerned with art skills but just, how does your garden feel this week, and next week? People really watched how much attention they were giving to getting rid of the weeds, and how little attention they had habitually been giving to nurturing the beautiful blossoms, even if they were small. What do we give them to nurture them?

In the Eightfold Path, right effort is defined as the effort to cause wholesome mind states already arisen to develop. To cause unwholesome mind states already arisen to cease. To nurture wholesome mind states not yet arisen. To cease the conditions that will give rise to unwholesome mind states.

We keep going through this. Inviting the wholesome to arise. Seeing what there is that's beautiful, that's radiant, that's good in ourselves, and not getting lost in the darkness. But still attending to the places of darkness. Just a little bit of mud that got on and we wash it away.

Aaron often talks about the washing of the window. If the window is dirty, you don't tear out all the glass in the window. You know the mud on it is simply the impermanent play of conditions. Wash it off. The glass in itself is pure. But we have to through meditation and other spiritual practice to come to trust that pure glass of the self, and that means paying attention to it.

A helpful exercise is simply watching when you do something kind or generous or patient or this is expressed, to stop—“Thank you. That was patient. Thank you. That was kind.” Just bringing your attention to it. It's not, “Wow! Look at me, I'm great! I'm so patient!” Just, “I didn't get caught in the subtle impatience that was coming up, I just settled into spaciousness. Okay, good. I did that.” Eventually the “I did that” falls away. But in the beginning there's a self. “I did that.”

For those of you not in Ann Arbor, the transcripts from the semester class will be online, and the homework that's given, and you can follow along with the class to some degree, and join us. It's called Semester II of Consciousness and Its Objects. The ongoing class I'm leading this year. Dan Muir is leading the second semester with me.

In the first semester we looked at the nature of conditioned objects to arise and cease, and the simultaneity of conditioned and unconditioned. Citta is the Pali word for consciousness. Mundane citta takes a mundane object. Supramundane citta, which I call awareness, takes a supramundane object. We begin to distinguish and understand the simultaneity, for example, of Aaron's that which is aware of anger is not angry. The conditioned object of anger that has arisen is real, in our experience. And the unconditioned awareness in which there's no contraction, no anger  is also real. We don't say, “No, I'm in that blissful space. There can't be anger.” We realize, “This human's experiencing anger AND there is this spaciousness and ease with it. The anger is simply the product of conditions and it will pass.” So that was Semester I.

Semester II we're going to work more with the supramundane objects, both as we experience them in meditation, and also what we might call the expressions of the Unconditioned such as luminosity, energy, nada, (that humming sound of silence). We'll work with the elements. The elements are conditioned, but the elements also have an unconditioned aspect. So we're going to work with all of that, and with the “Vision is Light, Vision is Mind, Mind is Empty” practice, along with vipassana. And we're going to work especially with the akashic field. We're not going into the deep togyal teachings but just Aaron's simplified articulation of it labeled akashic field.

People are welcome to follow this. They've been working to buy communication equipment so that people can register for the class at a distance. The last Board minutes  said it is in place. The tried to buy it in the fall and the equipment that came was non-functional and they had to return it. So we went to a different product...

The first class is February 26, 2015, on alternate Wednesdays through early June, 8 classes. The last Wednesday in February.

Other questions?


Q: Is there anything Aaron wants to share with us?

A: If you knew how much you were loved, by your guides, by the spirit that is filling this room, you would never have another moment of self-doubt or feelings of unworthiness. That's all.

He says, what other questions do you all have?

Q: How do we balance believing and questioning? For example, balancing the parts of us that know and the questioning?

B/A: I am Aaron. The problem is not the question, because it is not a balance of belief and question. If it becomes so, then there's constantly doubt and some grasping to hang onto “belief.” Unverified faith. Questioning has no problem with knowing and with resting in that place of unknowing. Questioning is almost synonymous with unknowing, but it's not a contracted questioning that says, “I need something to hold onto. And if I question I will lose this prop.” Rather, it's resting in the unknowing, opening the heart, and asking, “What can I be certain of?” In this moment, perhaps the only thing you can be certain of is that your belly is rumbling or you have an itch on your elbow, which moment will pass and you will not be certain anymore. Perhaps you conclude, “There's nothing of which I can be certain.” I think of Descartes: I think, therefore I am.  Ah, is that so? What can you be certain of?2

So, “belief” gets in the way of knowing, of coming to the place where the heart truly knows. And that liberated heart is able to ask questions. Does that answer your question?

Barbara had a very hard time at the very beginning because she felt I was real, she wanted to believe in me, but all her intellect said, “Oh, that's impossible. That's ridiculous.” Then she would feel guilty because she was questioning my existence and thinking, “I'm making it up.” Then people would say how much it was helping, and she would say to herself, “I couldn't possibly have made all this up.” Belief, questioning.

But finally I asked her to try to drop belief, and in this moment to simply feel my loving energy. She'd say, “How can I be sure it's real?” I'd say, “It doesn't matter. Do you feel it?” Right now in this moment, do you feel the loving energy in the room? Can you feel it? Is that a belief or an experience? If we light a stick of incense and you breathe it in, you know, “Smelling incense.” If we put a drop of honey on the tongue, you know, “Tasting honey.”

Your sense of feeling, touch, energy, is as valid a sense as any other. But you are so deeply conditioned that if you can't touch it, see it, taste it, maybe it's not real. Just examine that.

Aaron is saying, can you see the nucleus of a cell with your bare eyes? Is it real? Quoting Shakespeare, “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamed of in your philosophy.” Amen!

Other questions...

Q: I have a friend who has been working with MS through many alternative methodologies, for 20 years. When I saw her in January she was feeling very hopeless, and has worked with her belief systems and feels that her belief in miracles should have risen her from her wheelchair by now. I also encountered this with my friend who had colon cancer. It seemed there was a struggle between, “Okay, I have Stage IV cancer.” and hope for living a long life. Where is the space where you meet “I am here with this now yet I still believe in miracles or have hope for a full recovery.”?

Q: I personally struggled with my friend who didn't face the real possibility of dying, and didn't speak to her daughter about that. And I didn't say, “Let's look at this. You may die.” I didn't want to dash her hopes or her belief that she could get well. So where do I find that place of fact and hope?

B/A: Every being will die. Every being will die. Most of you are not totally comfortable with that idea. I'm not speaking of simply, “I'd rather not have that happen today.” But really unable to imagine a world in which this self-centered ego is not perpetuated and is not in control. You really cannot counsel your friend until you do more work within yourself with acceptance of these messengers of sickness, old age, and death. Messengers for awakening, or messengers that bring fear.

The more you cling to life in a tenacious way, “No, I will not die. No, my body will not further decay,” and so forth, the more you exclude yourself from the possibilities of enormous joy and awakening and wonder. Because as you release that self-identification with the body, you find out only then what you truly are.

Your friends, in perpetuating the “I can't live. I won't live, but I will live,” and that whole cycle of fear, are not giving themselves the chance to find anything beyond the ego self that's caught up in this cyclical “I can't. I will. I must. I can't.” Time to get off the wheel.

How do you get off the wheel? I suggest if she's open to it, you begin to teach her some elementary vipassana or just mindfulness meditation, to bring increasing awareness to the tone of her experience. Know when it's pleasant; when it's unpleasant. Know when the body is contracted, when there is fear, and so forth. And to keep asking her to ask herself, “Go beyond that.” Go beyond the fear. Go beyond the particular thought that keeps playing in the mind, positive or negative. Who are you? What remains?

You ask, “Where is the space where you meet ‘I am here with this now yet I still believe in miracles or have hope for a full recovery'?” This is the space of the open heart, free of grasping, able to include all possibilities. If you don't include the possibility to die, how can you include the possibility to live? You ar eliving in a mass of contractions and contradictions.

So these are two possible ways to support your friend. Doing your own work in disintegration of the ego, and helping her to develop the meditative tools to do this work herself. I pause.

One more question?

Q: Would you mind saying something about the relationship between Amy and Shanti (the kitten)? How they found each other.

B/A: You have all lived so many lives. I talk about different densities. First density is rock and mineral. Second density is simplest plant, like algae and evolving plant structures, evolving into animal, which is a stronger level of consciousness than a plant-- can more completely enact its consciousness. And the evolution of different levels of animals.

In your past lives you have of course encountered many different sentient life forms. Perhaps in a life past you had a special rose bush that you nurtured for 20 or 30 years and it bore magnificent blossoms. Perhaps that rose bush since then has evolved into a readiness to move from a plant form to an animal form. I'm not talking about Shanti, here, but just using this as hypothetical example. Perhaps Amy tended that rose bush. It was magnificent. Tended it in several past lives. And then this time around it decides to take consciousness as a cat. Naturally it's drawn to the person who attended it. And you, because you loved your roses, you're drawn to the new expression of those roses. This is not the specific, more a metaphor. But of course Amy and Shanti have known each other before, had loving support each to the other, enjoyed each other's energy.

It's not really any different than if you walk into a party. You look around the room. Suddenly your eyes are drawn to one person. You know that person at some level. You're drawn to them. You walk over and introduce yourself. You feel like you've met an old friend. What drew you to that party together?

Barbara tells the story, this being 50 years ago. She was at home and her housemate received a call from a friend who was having a party, saying, “Please bring your roommates.” Barbara said, “No way. I'm just getting over the flu. I haven't bathed in three days. I'm exhausted. No; you go.” Her roommate said, “I'll wait for you. You shower, I'll call a cab. If you're not having a good time in an hour, we'll go home.” She knew Barbara was better, she was just tired. So Barbara went. She spent the required hour. She was not having a good time. She said to her roommate, “I am going home. You don't have to come, I'll call a cab for myself.” And at that moment, Hal walked in the door. They took one look at each other across this room of 20 or 30 people. Eyes riveted. She took off her coat. She knew she needed to stay. This is Barbara's story, I'll pass it to Barbara...

B: So it was very clear I knew this person. I didn't know how I knew him, and I didn't have to know. Suddenly I knew him. And we talked. Hal  and his friend who came with him, drove me home and the friend said to Hal afterward, “When are you going to see her again?” And Hal said, “I'm not. If I see her again I'm going to end up marrying her!”

So what Aaron is saying is, we know. And it doesn't matter whether it's another human or a kitten. He's saying you were equally drawn to each other, it wasn't just Shanti drawn to you. You each recognized each other's energy.

A: I am Aaron. You also recognized that Shanti is an old soul in kitten form. Beings do not necessarily progress 1st density, 2nd density, 3rd density and so forth. I've talked about this. Sometimes an entity may choose for some reason to come into incarnation as something like a cat. It's a relatively short lifetime, 20-25 years. Especially choosing a beloved companion, to learn something and to teach something; to do some specific work; to balance old karma. But at some level it's also a higher density being.

Shanti is a 2nd density cat, and also the higher self is 6th density, just like all your higher selves. But Shanti also incorporates some of that 4th density energy. I think she has come mostly to learn about love and service in a relatively stress-free way. And it's very interesting to me that instead of being born in the U.S. and having you find her in the field behind your house, she chose to be born in such a high energy environment.

One more short question?

Q: The sounds drowned out what density you said, that Shanti is.

B: She is a 2nd density cat, a 6th density higher self, as all of you are, and at some level also a 4th or 5th density being, all mixed together.

He says many of your more mature pets are thus. He's looking back, he's pointing out to me a dog I had that some of you may have known named Paulie, who was adopted. He came to us very frightened of people. He was very much a 2nd density dog learning how to be a dog and accept love. I'm paraphrasing Aaron now. He says, compare that to Sulu, who some of you know, who has been a 3rd density being, is temporarily being a dog for certain learning and service, and is a very high energy individual as well.

He's asking, did any of you here know Paulie? You probably don't remember too much about him. He was shy because he had been mistreated before we got him. Then he started to trust people and became a big teddy bear. But he wasn't very smart. He loved. He was here to give and receive love. He probably needed to be abused first so that it brought up the fear. Aaron says, “... It was grace that taught my heart to fear,” to bring up the fear so he could consciously decide to love and to accept love. But he was not at a human level of consciousness.

He says some of you know Sulu and you understand Sulu in some ways is at a human level of consciousness. Sulu, for those who don't know, is my hearing-ear dog, my four-legged ears. And he very much takes matters into his own paws. If somebody comes to the door who he doesn't know, he runs to get me. If somebody comes to the door that he does know, he simply wags his tale and greets them. Then eventually, once they're finished patting him, he'll get around to getting me. “First, my love! Pay attention to me first, then I'll get Barbara.”

Q: I will never forget that he came to my rescue even though I had never met him before.

B: Tell them about that.

Q: So when I had broken my hip, I was lying in that cabin in the woods. I needed to wait for Barbara to come. I knew she'd come, give and take a couple of hours. I was waiting there. And then I heard the car doors in the distance. It's quite a distance between those cabins. But I knew she couldn't hear me, right? So I was thinking, “I don't want her to go swimming first because I'll be lying there for (inaudible whispering).

B: She was on retreat so I wasn't going to go and disturb her.

Q: Exactly. I had just arrived, so I could be sleeping, right? So she could as well have just done her thing for the first couple of hours. But I'd had a Skype session with Barbara and Sulu was in the background, so I kind of knew his energy. I could connect with that.

So, lying there and hearing a car door in the distance slam, I figured it's Barbara, so I go, “Sulu! Sulu! Come here! I need you! I need help! Sulu!” He came. That dog came from really far away. He couldn't get to me because that cabin door was closed

B: Sulu took off through the woods. Normally he would never leave me. But I called him back three times. Where's he going? Did he see a deer or something? Where's he going? He came back. He looked at me, he barked, he went running back again.  I followed him and found Y. He was so worried too when he came in, went straight to her. I thought she was just lying down but Sulu knew.

Q: That's what happened. It's amazing...

B/A: It's 8 o'clock... (recording ends)

1 St John of the Cross; Dark Night of the Soul. Here is a clear on-line version.


I remember the quote Aaron refers to but cannot find it.

2  When I was growing up I had a riding instructor who was truly my first dharma teacher.  I have no idea if he had any formal background in dharma, but when I was 12, at camp, and assisted at the stable, he used to greet me with questions like, “What do you know for certain?” “It's morning” I'd reply; or “I'm grooming Yankee.” “Is it morning in Australia?” he'd ask, or “Can you be certain this horse's true name is Yankee?” Sometime in the second or third year of such morning greetings from Joe, I answered, “Right now, in this moment, I feel happy.” He beamed at me and said, “Now you're getting it.”