Nebadonia - The Different Kinds of Meditation - July 23, 2007 - Marin TM
Nebadonia—July 23, 2007
Marin TM Group—Mill Valley, California—U.S.A.
Dear Mother Spirit and Michael, Welcome. Going by your advice, we try to live our lives avoiding any lazy, laid-back expectations, but we can’t avoid anticipating with great curiosity and wonder what you have for us each time. We never mean to put you on the spot but perhaps, you being our true spiritual parents, you are always there already, and enjoy being so--being always available for us. We happily know you have the spontaneity, the being super-present with an ability to respond to us, that you encourage us to, at least, try to approach having ourselves. So we thank you for your gifts and your gentle reminders. Amen.
NEBADONIA: Good evening, my children, this is your spirit mother, Nebadonia. I want to thank you for gathering in this evening, this time in the full heat of a midsummer’s evening. Michael and I do appreciate it.
(Spirit wants only what is freely given)
You are very correct, we are always present, literally as a part of you, and yet if you are open to another gentle reminder, there is still that sacrosanct, utterly inviolable and reserved part of you that you can give to us. Believe me, my dear children, though this is the way our Father made you—free to choose, we would have it no other way. A wonderful truth of spirit, of which we are wholly and you are partly composed, is the desire to receive from another nothing that is not freely given; and given, not just by pure cosmic happenstance, but as a conscious and highly willful gift. Your giving of yourselves is a hallmark of spiritual generosity, an inner proof, if you will, of the existence of your own spirit. It’s that part of your own nature that I delight so in augmenting--your own intrinsic spiritual value of worship, just the sheer, unadulterated thankfulness to be alive. We assure you, my children, as we are your avenues of approach to the Universal Father and the Eternal Son, through Michael, and the Infinite Spirit, through me, that these Beings at the very center of creation can feel, can experience your love and your thankfulness.
Indeed this is part of the central glow of Paradise. That radiance is not only what intrinsically comes from them, but that the Trinity is also the focal point of all the love of all their children. Spirit is that oneness; spirit is that connection; spirit is that divine radiance that is shared by Creator and creature alike.
(There followed a very long pause)
Isn’t it wonderful to be still--just to enjoy it? You can even forget all the good things it does for you, all that spiritual motivation and ambition, all that drive for perfection, and just be. I will confess that this completeness we have been teasing you with and encouraging you to feel, is a bit of a mystery. But that’s only because it shares so much, is so much of our Father’s nature.
(Mystery and infinity)
You want to be clear that we are not mystery-mongering here. We are not creating opacity for you to be like some little boy with a new flashlight running around looking for dark places to use it. (laughter) The Father’s very absoluteness and infinity constitutes Him a mystery even to Michael and I, to all subordinate beings outside the Trinity. For even the seven Master Spirits of Paradise are truly differentiated. There is no mistaking them for each does express a unique and only partial reality emerging from the Trinity.
And so too, God’s nigh infinite and infinitesimal creation constitutes mystery. A lot of this is expressed in what we call the Unqualified Absolute--if you will, a very real reality, but something there that, for human beings, constitutes a kind of--Thou Shall Not Pass--offered for your understanding as something that is not exactly understandable. It is a true reality and unfathomable mystery that can be acknowledged by humans, but only penetrated with time. Yet, my children, it is part of every moment of your lives, and so we know, as human beings your curiosity will not let it alone.
You often think of the Unqualified Absolute as randomness, or chance, as that part of the unknowable future that cannot be anticipated, even the exact thoughts you will have five minutes from now. You are indeed in an enormous river of cosmic time flowing along. The more you go with the flow, the more still you feel, yet it can appear the banks—everything else--is rushing by. You can be aware of all the infinity about you, and within you--all this unfathomable mystery. So in the midst of all this unable-to-be-qualified, yet absolute reality, God and His will stands out by stark and sheer contrast, and quite a blessing, that He and His creation are knowable. Not entirely, certainly; that’s going to take you a while. That’s going to take you eternity.
The upshot of all this mystery and infinity, my children, that I’m dangling in front of you here, and trying to get you to feel and welcome, is because it is real. It really does constitute your day to day life. There is no way as a living, physical creature you cannot try your best to anticipate what’s coming, try to understand the infinitely discernable but bottomless laws of total physical/mental/spiritual cause and effect. I offer you these understandings of mystery so you can recognize it, and feel it, and achieve a kind of psychological balance in your day to day life with it.
(Universal Reality—Oneness and multiplicity)
Consider how human psychology and philosophy tend towards the extremes Michael spoke of last week. On the one hand people see Universal Reality only as a Oneness--It’s all God, all God’s will--and then have so often in so many historical cultures been logically led to a kind of fatalism, a life of lazily kicking back and letting God do it all. It’s the feeling there’s nothing at stake here, there’s nothing at risk, nothing can be lost: it’s all God.
On the other extreme you have those who perceive no spiritual unification of the cosmos or human life. Life is only a dog-eat-dog struggle for existence, power, even meaning itself, in which each individual is truly alone. One can only accept life with a certain amount of stoicism, let alone cynicism, that sees such real qualities as love, respect, helpfulness, generosity—even other people--as means to other ends, rather than as spiritual ends in themselves.
Rather than these extremes, we would point out an achievable balance in your day to day lives between feeling helpless, struggling in the midst of so much mystery and infinity, so much inability to know exactly what’s going to happen; and letting go any self determination to just coast along with a kind of destructive, enervating fatalism, merely to get some relief.
(Your will and God’s will)
There is a way, my children. There is truly a way to maturity, to hold more and more of these puzzling aspects of reality in your mind and in your heart. You can feel comfortable with them without in any way relinquishing your self determination. Your Urantia book puts it wonderfully as feeling, and then determining—choosing: It is my will that your will, Father, be done. Here is the true non-separation you seek. In that one sentence is the supreme desire to realize both your own absolute existence and gradually developing will, at the same time fully acknowledging the enormity, the infinity of the Father’s will--and choosing the absolute goodness of it for your own.
You are not just kicking back saying. "OK, Father, it’s all in your hands. I can do nothing"--yet avoiding the other pitfall of feeling a desperate existential need to see your will triumph over all, at the expense of anyone else who gets in your way. Think about this, my children. It is your will, your will as an unique individual creation--distinct in the cosmos—by which you orient yourself to discovering, and putting your shoulder behind, the Supreme Reality--the will of the Creator. It’s not for nothing we say: you can actually become more real by doing so. So: if you will, you give it your best effort. You stay open to the outcome, which will be, in total--God’s. You learn; you don’t worry about it. That’s the balancing act you can feel happening. That’s the completeness you can experience in your stillness and then beyond. That completeness, that spiritual confidence can extend on into your days and all your activities. So welcome the unknown. Lean into it. Feel what we mean by the blessing of all this mystery, all this sublime uncertainty. Let it enliven you and add to your worship, your thankfulness just to be alive.
If you have any questions or comments this evening, I’ve noticed too, my dear children, the enormous respect and love you’ve shown to me, through them, as well. So just step off.
Student: Mother Nebadonia, I have a problem with my mind. It’s like a naughty little boy running around here and there, then staying stuck in one place. It’s hard to pay attention to what you are saying, and very difficult to do stillness of any kind. Sometimes even guided stillness or guided meditation doesn’t work right. It’s like I’m just running around, or maybe have no discipline. I’m wondering if there is anything I can do about it?
(Stillness and restlessness—cause and effect?)
NEBADONIA: Yes, my son, you are face to face with a kind of duality in which--from our point of view—you are actually getting better at stillness. You are becoming more still and self-complete, and it’s showing up your restlessness by contrast, all those other aspects of yourself that are nervously dashing about. I can only suggest you persist and realize that you are not alone in this.
Not to belittle your personal efforts in any way, my son, but keep in mind that this is a very common occurrence. When people try to be still it begins to show up all this frantic activity, so they can mistakenly get cause and effect turned around backwards. They can put the cart in front of the horse and think, the more I try to be still, the more nervous and scattered I become--which is actually a great effort to be inwardly honest. You’re to be congratulated for this perception. So much for the understanding part: what do you do about it?
Student: Yes, that is the question. (Mother laughs)
NEBADONIA: You mentioned different kinds of meditation, so realize how we are trying to get you to do the most difficult, just sitting quietly enjoying—for you, at first—an intense doing nothing. For you are discovering how much it brings up. It helps greatly if you can stay with your breath, or your heartbeat, as we recommended. This may last, initially, only for a minute or so, and then off you’ll go, captured by another mental phenomena, a memory or a worry, some plans you have in mind.
You remember how, in a recent lesson, we suggested you can respect your body for its always being in reality, its obeying universal physical laws? So in your meditation you try to stay in touch with your body. One technique we haven’t mentioned before, because it is very subtle, is simply counting your breaths. Just count up to ten and start back at one. You’re doing this not with the intention of filling your mind with numbers, but to help stay aware of the physical act of breathing—each separate breath. You will find that, once you become successful at this, the thoughts will come as if alongside this continuing physical awareness. This is what you want. You want to enter a state of stillness where your higher consciousness can give you spiritual input from Michael and myself, or your Father Fragment.
In this way of staying in touch with your body, if you suddenly find yourself taking a breath and can’t remember was this number five or six of this series… (laughter) you just start again; the same if you take a breath and think "sixteen." So you were captured by a stray thought and lost count, or went right past number ten: you just start again. Even this is a great mental ability of tenaciously staying with wherever you are, and not worrying about it. You just start again. This is your beginner’s mind being exercised. Always be willing to start again.
You can use this small psychic handle to get a hold on the organic thing you call life, and thinking; and be still. So try it, and try for only five minutes to begin with. You can do that. You can devote yourself for five minutes. Then get up and take a walk, or stretch, and try another five minutes. See if you can go five minutes staying in touch with your body. I hope that’s challenge enough. Give it a try.
Student: I will do that; and it is a challenge. I don’t know why, but I’ve not wanted to stay in touch with my body for some time. Maybe now I can see it differently and put in on another plane.
NEBADONIA: You must appreciate the challenge, my son, in order to appreciate the peculiar effort it takes. The value of stillness is partly that it brings so much of your life into consciousness. This is what you want. This is what you are trying for. (Yes) Don’t get cause and effect mixed up. Trying to be still just brings into contrast all the ways you are not, so you can consider them anew. So give it a try, with my love.
Student: What I’m hearing, Mother, is the law of least effort. In nature it’s like the grass is growing, not trying to grow. In my years of trying to get stillness, I am finally seeing that if I stay in present awareness—I look around me at everything, right now—if I stay right in the moment, then all of a sudden my chatter-brain slows down. It doesn’t go back in the past. The spiritual unification you mention is through this law of least effort. Just be, and let the will of the Father be my will.
That’s so moving—what you’re saying tonight. It’s finally starting to sink in. I’m feeling so much power in the present moment. So once again I’m really delighted to be here. Thank you.
(Respecting the physical)
NEBADONIA: You are entirely welcome, my daughter: very well put. Did I forget to mention there is no top nor bottom to stillness either? It too is an infinity, another mystery that is like an escalator you are setting foot on--the constant effort to be effortless…(laughter); to discover this minimum of effort. So I caution you not to think of stillness as a blankness of mind, which is why I offered C some way of determining whether he was staying with his breathing, with his living body, or straying away. Your ego-awareness is such a mental reality, such grandiose notions, and ambitions, and desires, that it forgets to pay respect to the living tabernacle, the living life mechanism that is supporting it.
Indeed, this is the attraction of all your psychotropic drugs, even the common, legal ones of nicotine, and caffeine, and alcohol. You take in something physical and it changes your mind; though unfortunately, through habit, even this usually fails to reach the level of a conscious decision. Your body craves, and is answered: all unconsciously. So pay this deep respect of meditation to your living self. Get in touch with the reality it supports. Carry on, my daughter. You are finding the bottomless depths of your spiritual home base in stillness. Be in my love.
Student: Mother, that was quite a beautiful picture you painted earlier, of how our love glows all the way on into Paradise. It almost felt as if we did indeed take a journey to Paradise. So I want to thank you for that beautiful picture, and my wonderful experience.
NEBADONIA: Yes, my son. Did you go to Paradise, or did Paradise come over and say hello to you? (laughter) Maybe both. What I said is true: loving spirit is the connection, binding everything together. Your approaching it is its approaching you. As Michael loved to say, as Jesus, when you reach toward the Father you discover His hand is already reaching toward you. He is the shepherd who goes out in search of His wandering, straying children.
Student: Earlier this week, Michael and one of the other teachers—I can’t remember which—had an exchange of love and joy of each others’ presence in their lives—Father to son, and brother to brother—and the joy I felt through that exchange was so life-giving. The joy of getting to know Michael, and having these experiences with him; I just wanted to talk about that, share that.
NEBADONIA: Thank you, my son, for you see, a lot of that connection is me. I definitely enjoy being used. (much laughter…) It does my heart good to connect things. That’s my forte, if you will. (and more…)
(Personality, Pattern, and Mind)
One way of thinking of this is that, in the eternity of the past, in the happening that never happened, but has always been, God’s segregation of Universal Reality into the personal and the impersonal—the Eternal Son and Paradise—Personality and Pattern--instantaneously gave rise to something to connect them—the Infinite Spirit. This went abroad into time and space as the Cosmic Mind. Down on your human level, your spiritual personality connects with this living physical body of yours, composed of impersonal material and energies, through the mediation of mind, which I augment. This is the function of mind, and why my helping augmentations are called Mind/Spirit Adjutants. As you sit here, my son, basking in my love and allowing me to bask in yours, this too is the real, and yet so ineffable part of your human life, we are delighted you can feel and enjoy it.
Student: What I enjoy so much about it, is the connection is done with nurturing that comes from you. The beauty comes through you.
NEBADONIA: And you, my son, pass it on to your children. With your loving presence you give them a real meaning to the word—father.
Student: And I accept this beautiful gift, and thank you very much.
NEBADONIA: The most moving words I’ve heard Michael say recently, is how, as Jesus, he never tired of holding small children on his knees: he was always amazed--as a human being, they were actually his children—as a Creator Son of God. It is a worship of the Father to share in that experience yourself, to bring these little, potentially eternal beings into existence, and nurture them with love.
(There followed a very long pause, no one wanting to break the profound peace)
Student: Thank you so very much for that sublime exchange with R. I can’t follow that up with anything equal to it. But to get mundane here: I wanted to ask you about the Unqualified Absolute—why you brought that up tonight. Its mystery is so enticing, so amazing to contemplate. It has something to do with our will, and God’s will; I wonder if you could restate the thesis of it so we can go home with a little bit more of that tonight?
NEBADONIA: Yes, my son, I wanted to address this evening a certain kind of deep existential worry that gnaws at people’s souls: that there is so much they cannot get a hold of. Even as they try, and become ever more learned, and wise, the horizon seems to recede all the more rapidly. They more they learn and understand, the larger the mystery seems to get.
(Intellectual hubris and mystery-mongering)
I pointed out two historical ways attempts have been made to resolve the quandary. As Michael explained, one is monism, seeing correctly that there is a oneness, there is a way in which God is everything; but this intellectual comprehension of a true reality led to a hubris of assuming they had God’s mind, as if they were God and could even begin to comprehend the Creation. You are much assisted in your modern times with views through your telescopes to confront just how big it all is. You even have your Urantia book confirming that there are hundreds of millions of galaxies out there, let alone the infinity—to you--of another human soul.
So at first this was largely an unconscious, unintended kind of intellectual hubris that led to denying the reality of individuality—It’s all One--as if the unique and personal creations of God—enduring personalities and souls--were only illusions. There followed the almost deliberate creation of mystery, calling normal reality an illusion--an actual mystery-mongering by a priesthood just to amaze and control their followers—the priest-craft of the ages which is actually a form of political power, and has always given truly spiritual people a bad taste.
I once likened the future, for a human being, to standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon: an abyss. This nature of your level of being will not be left entirely behind for some endless billions of years of development until you actually become a citizen of Paradise and step out of time and space—temporality as you know it—and become Final.
There is an Universal Absolute, a connection between the Deity Absolute—roughly the sum total of all personal beings—and again we’re only using words to point at something you cannot begin to experience—and this unable-to-be qualified mystery. There is a connection. This Unqualified Absolute of—to humans—pure, endless or eternal, unfolding potential, does respond to you. So much too of your reality can be discovered and known, can be expressed in—so far—infinitely defined laws of cause and effect, right down into the sub-sub-sub atomic level of nano-second by nano-second, and on out into the furthest reaches of the cosmos. You have achieved quite a lot; and you’ve only started: both.
So these are just some further frills—you might say…(Mother Spirit chuckled)… to put some petals on His amazing flower blossoming in front of us.
Student: Were you also saying that there is some kind of balance between those who are giving up on their own will and saying that God does everything, and the materialists who just use their own will to override everything else? Are you saying that God’s will falls somewhere between those two? Could you go at that again?
NEBADONIA: I was saying they are both wrapped up in a devotion, another form of love for yourself and all your fellows, when you decide: It is my will that God’s will be done. This gives supreme recognition to your individuality—the fact you are a creature of will dignity—you have the dignity of being spiritually creative enough to create alternatives that give you a choice. You exercise your will by choosing, and affecting reality--which does, in part, respond. You participate in the Absolute by your very existence. So it is acknowledging and emphasizing the individuality of personal beings. They are not illusions. They are real. They are created by God.
At the same time you are acknowledging there is one Supreme will only, in the creation of personal beings beyond number, all the way from the Trinity, the Seven Master Spirits, the heads of the seven Superuniverses—the Ancients of Days, on down to the Creator Sons and Daughters—the Hold Spirits of the Local Universes, the human beings of the evolutionary planets; and a thousand other intermediate levels as well. All this is actually going on out there, right as you’re sitting here. It’s all real. And it is all proceeding—in total--according to God’s will. God’s will is only another name for reality.
So as you seek to discover and put your shoulder behind God’s will, you achieve your own greater reality simultaneously. This is the balance. As a personal being you can choose to commit yourself to exercising your will, your unique personal will, to discovering and actually helping God extend His will by one more person. Needless to say, this is of the greatest value and benefit to all other personal beings in association with you.
Student: Thank you for that, Mother. A very gracious and complete answer.
NEBADONIA: It is amazing what can be captured in one sentence; but again, there is no bottom to that either: (much laughter) It is my will that Your will be done. So say amen to that; and rest in my love.
Student: I keep hearing this talk going through my head: Of myself I can do nothing, but with God I can do everything. As I make a commitment of enlightened intent, it seems everything becomes geared to living as God intended me to live. As I open up to this awareness of my true nature, if I seem to be acting out something of my own will only—my thoughts, my views, my habits—there’s no energy there to keep going. It seems I’m being nudged back into His flow. It is quite effortless if I allow it to be. What is not of benefit slowly dissolves away.
Then those around me—my children, those I work for, whoever—reap benefits as well. I feel more real. I feel more present. And I also feel when I’m not. So…
NEBADONIA: Yes, my son, last week with Michael you gave a good description of how an inner vision/experience of being shot down a linear accelerator past all particular definitions of who you are gave you a feeling of coming home to your spiritual home base. This was a good description of the orientation it takes to discover God’s will.
(Feeling yourself growing and diminishing)
You are a physical being living within an inexorable economy of effort and energy, but if you are willing to pay the price of attention, and strive to be present, you can discern when you are approaching His will and becoming more real, and when you are departing from it. Both are equally valid. One is an augmenting reality, and the other is a diminishing reality. When you feel yourself becoming less real, that evaluation itself is valid by way of your spirit. It’s a correct assessment that: Ooops!—I’m just getting off into the finite part of me; whereas if I orient myself to discovering God’s will—to discovery, to the humility of finding something bigger than me—that’s where the juice is. That’s where the energy is. That’s where the connection and the love we talked about, is. That’s where you find Him, reaching to you; as He is literally the origin of energy itself, as well as personality. Never forget that God is the origin of all energy and material as well.
Student: I have felt that gnawing sensation of not knowing what is going to happen to me, where my life is going. That’s when I try not to do anything about it, not to numb it out—so to speak, but try to be still with it. I sense that in this anxiety, or uncertainty, right in there is the key to so much potential and a greater sense of who I am.
NEBADONIA: Yes, which is why you are refusing to let that anxiety or worry drive you out of the present—worrying about the future, or regretting the past. You are developing a technique for staying present by recognizing when these occur. You sit down in the middle of the quandary, determined to remain here and now. That’s good.
Student: It’s still a pain in the butt. (Ed: referring to a previous lesson)
NEBADONIA: Well, that’s the price you‘re paying for paying attention.
Student: I do feel I’m being nudged into the right way. So…thank you.
NEBADONIA: You are welcome, my son. God’s laws are only coercive insofar as they are absolute. (more laughter) They are what works. You are free to choose what doesn’t work. To that degree you can choose—and this is true—you can choose to cease to exist as an ongoing autonomous entity. You will always be a part of the Supreme Being, the soul of time and space, but when you cease to exist your personality returns to its source, much as those who do not believe in any life after physical death see you returning to the over-soul of everything. Whereas you do have the choice to continue on indefinitely into eternity as an autonomous, personal being.
So carry on, my son. I find it interesting you are discovering these various ways to stay oriented to God’s will by finding the strengths and limitations of your own.
Student: As I allow myself to expand, it seems my focus is more and more straight and narrow. It’s a real interesting paradox. Thank you.
(Mother Spirit’s thankfulness)
NEBADONIA: Thank you, my children. Once again it’s been a very full experience for your mother. I’m so thankful for what I am able to express to my children who love and honor me so greatly--that you open your souls for what I have to give, and make it possible. It is really wonderful being the Holy Spirit of a Local Universe, and doubly so when I can share some of that with you. Rest in my love, as I delight in yours. Good evening.