– Heartwood Path Waypoint 89 –
The Road To Sageness
The best word for what happens on avenues of pilgrimage such as the Heartwood Path is “sadhana,” which is akin to the Sanskrit word sadhu, which means going straight to a goal. “Sadhana” is a Hindu or Buddhist spiritual practice through which an individual reveres a formed image as a mediate step in the worship of a formless deity or principle. Sadhana is the Tantric evocation of a formless deity by means of ritual for the purpose of getting control of the deity. Sadhana is also a discipline through which an individual can attain enlightenment or samadhi—the state of deep concentration resulting in union with the ultimate reality. This state is achieved by worshipping (we could say revering, venerating, adoring, exalting, or admiring )the image of a formed thing as a mediate step (intermediary) to the worship and use of a formless deity or principle (natural laws, the animating spirit . . . God). While sadhana is a Hindu and Buddhist spiritual practice, there are traces of this custom in other religions and spiritual paths, as well. The worshipping the image of Jesus by Christians is one such example. Our own picking of attractive natural objects (a form of praise), our seeking of consent (a form of reverence and honor), and the repetition of visiting natural beings (a form of devotion) makes the Heartwood Path at least reminiscent of a sadhana. Certainly our chosen attractive natural beings are mediate steps (intervenors, resolvers) leading to the praise of the Absolute and the reception of its guidance, information, and healing.
A formed thing to be worshipped along the Heartwood Path as a mediate step is one’s own “self”, which we shall define as that which is considered all that is of a singular character, united, and not separated as would be an “other” (we shall see subsequently how this self is expanded as a Sacred or Greater Self which includes more than what is enclosed in one’s own bag of skin). Also included in our definition, therefore, are two other significant adornments to the “self,” namely: Nature and a lover.
I use the word worship carefully. When I used the term worship in the context of the Heartwood Path, which is not a religion, I meant an act, process, or instance of expressing veneration by taking part in exercises or rituals in an effort to realize the real presence of the Divine. This presence along the Heartwood Path comes as the excellent guidance, information, and healing one receives with the help of attractive natural beings from the Absolute––that which is complete, pure, consummate, boundless, and universal. I could replace the word “worship” with the word “devotion,” and, thereby, minimize the chances that the participant will react negatively to “worshipping” in unfamiliar or religiously forbidden ways.
The formed things of primary interest along the Heartwood Path are not considered the Divine. Rather, the formed things are mediate steps that connect one through ritual to the Divine; they reconcile and interpret for us Its (or His or Her) Ultimate Reality.
In addition to our sadhana-like practices of visiting attractive natural beings, the stage will be set for your possible illumination or enlightenment during your time on the Heartwood Path through a curious but time-tested mixture of practices that includes Shabda Yoga, the attainment of tranquility, the retention of childhood innocence, boldness, and the seeking of justice (each covered in the activity for this waypoint).
The Yoga Of Sound
At this point in your Heartwood Path pilgrimage you know where you are heading (to a state of being an enlightened prophet, armed with a sonic staff, and prepared to serve the greater whole happily and persistently) but you do not know how to get there. You are not yet prepared to speak and respond to Vak sounds and so you are still dependent on words. Meeting you where you are in your dependence on words, the Heartwood Path now takes you to the four steps in our yoga of sound protocol. Note in the activity below that we will still be using words. This is done for two reasons: 1) right from the start we want you to become accustomed to creating and trusting your own mantras (even if they are words rather than sounds) as that is what you will be doing often as you proceed down the Heartwood Path and 2) using unfamiliar sounds, at this step, will take the focus away from the four steps in the following activity and put your attention too much on the newness of the Vak sounds. Later, mantric sounds will replace the words and you will, possibly, enter into the state of samadhi and become a saint.
Sex lies at the core of one’s identity and at the root of one’s need to discover joy or avoid loneliness. Heartwood Path Sex, unlike conventional sex, is not mainly an outlet leading to a release of sexual pressure; but rather an inlet leading to relationship, enchantment, and the holding of sexual/physical/ spiritual pleasure. The wonderful results of Heartwood Path Sex have a lot to do with abundant tranquility and not very much to do with ambitious conquests or passing gratification.
To put this essential message to work for you, tell someone you like––your partner, maybe––the little things that you notice which makes them appealing and attractive. Focus more attention on the person inside the body. Write a poem to your beloved. Develop your sense of humor. Laugh more, particularly on bad days. Look for the humor in the drudgery, the sad times, the moments that would otherwise evoke resentment. Be a little crazy once and a while. Write down ways to inspire laughter and craziness. Laugh at yourself and the things you do. That way you can nearly always be amused.
Being childlike does not mean being childish, or immature, or undisciplined, or uneducated. It does mean to be nonjudgmental, accepting, and loving.
To be as perfect as a child, spend time with children. Just remember, as we all know, they are capable of disgracing you by demonstrating in public the example you set for them in private.
When you are being stodgy, convert to being childlike. Stay active like children. Keep moving. Write down how you will be childlike this week.
Do it, Do it Boldly, and Do it Now
Goethe says: “Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.” True enough, as you will discover when you overcome procrastination. I ask you: “Are you in earnest? Your answer needs to be “yes!” I plead with you to “seize this very day.” You do not have to have all the steps figured out in advance. Just start. Goethe says: “Only engage, and then the mind grows heated—Begin it, and then the work will be completed.” Write down ten things you have been putting off. Despite any feelings of resistance, begin at least one of them now. Then begin each of the remaining nine items on each of the nine consecutive days.
In the Bible it says: “let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever flowing stream.” –Amos, 5:24. Free people need to agree on some ground rules in order to live together in harmony. Principles of justice are such ground rules. They point to ideas of fair treatment. These principles serve as guidelines that help to govern modes of exchange and interaction in society. Principles of seeking justice of particular interest to eartHearts include the following ethical guidelines: participation is to be voluntary and based on informed choice; there is no discrimination; help and advice is available to all; disputes are resolved through mediation or other nonviolent methods established by each participating group; personal safety is protected; vulnerable participants are supported; the civil rights and dignity of persons is respected; community safety and social harmony are promoted; help for the disadvantaged is made available; and cultural diversity is respected along with civil rights and the rule of law.
Fairness, equity, and moral rightness are the main aspects of justice, which can be defined as action in accordance with the requirements of some law, be it God’s command, rules common to all humanity that emerge out of some consensus, or the edicts from society’s legal system. In a narrower sense, justice is action that pays due regard to the proper interests, property, and safety of one’s fellows.
If this is not a day when you prefer to spend time in nature without an agenda, do the following activity:
Seeking Enlightenment Through The Age-old Illuminating Mixture of Yoga of Sound, Tranquility, Childlike Innocence, Boldness, and Justice-making
HumaNatureConnect Activity: Seeking Enlightenment Through The Age-old Illuminating Mixture of Yoga of Sound, Tranquility, Childlike Innocence, Boldness, and Justice-making. With pen and journal in hand, go to an attractive natural area and, in a spirit of appreciation, look around you to find something that is attractive to you. Once you find an aspect of nature that is attractive to you continuously for at least ten seconds, use the optimal functioning you receive along with your continued attraction (which can be thought of as your consent from the attractive natural being to do this multi-part activity) to increase the likelihood of becoming enlightened. This is a long waypoint, so plan on spending more than one day at this stop.
Take The Four Steps Of Shabda Yoga
Think of something you want very much. Encode this heartfelt desire in the short phrase “ I want to feel ________” Then start the four steps of Shabda Yoga:
To strengthen the force of this mantra, say “I want” in the comfortable fundamental tone--one that feels best in your heart chakra (fourth). Then, to move the power from the heart to the head (throat, third eye, and crown chakras) say “to feel” in a note slightly higher in pitch. To move the power to the belly (first, second, and third chakras) say what you want in a tone slightly lower than the first fundamental tone. Remember this approach. You are taking the power that manifests in thunder, lightning, and ocean currents and ingesting it in mantra capsules.
Seek Abundant Tranquility
Ask the questions that follow to your chosen natural object but do not expect to be able to answer the questions immediately. Just ask for permission to ponder these questions on site in nature; immerse yourself in the qualities of the natural being and its natural surroundings; use one or more of your natural senses; think of your chosen being as an emissary carrying the wisdom of nature to you after granting you its consent to have this connection experience by remaining attractive; resonate with the underlying tone or rhythm you feel in your heart as you sit, stand, or lie next to your chosen natural being; allow the questions to be processed (answered) in the natural realm of your unconscious mind overnight; after a night’s dream-filled sleep, return to this activity and write out your answers. Doing so allows the intelligence of nature to silently (and perhaps in your dreams) work its magic on you so that you can then write out answers that are not tainted by fluctuating social pressures or willy-nilly moods. The following questions are adapted from a book by Taylor Clark(2011):
Maintain Childlike Innocence
Consider the wisdom that comes from being childlike. Review the following statements and add some of your own. Record your impressions of these statements in your journal.
Begin by examining the illusions you hold inside and consider the ways you change reality around you. The illusion to examine is not a delusion--the latter being a false image that prevents you from seeing the reality around you. A bold person, knowing that everything is an illusion, works to create themselves and their worlds according to the way they think and feel. In doing so, bold people endorse what Shakespeare says: “Nothing is but thinking makes it so.” With these thoughts in mind, ask the following questions to your chosen natural object but do not expect to be able to answer the questions immediately. Just ask for permission to ponder these questions onsite in nature; immerse yourself in the qualities of the natural being and its natural surroundings; use one or more of your natural senses; think of your chosen being as an emissary carrying the wisdom of nature to you after granting you its consent to have this connection experience by remaining attractive; resonate with the underlying tone or rhythm you feel in your heart as you sit, stand, or lie next to your chosen natural being; allow the questions to be processed (answered) in the natural realm of your unconscious mind overnight; after a night’s dream-filled sleep, return to this activity and write out your answers. Doing so allows the intelligence of nature to silently (and perhaps in your dreams) work its magic on you so that you can then write out answers that are not tainted by fluctuating social pressures or willy-nilly moods. The following questions are inspired by a book written by Christine Comaford-Lynch (2007):
To organize your thinking and acting regarding the seeking of justice, look over the statements below. Record your impressions, memories, and plans regarding each of the seven Themes from Catholic Social Teaching, as presented by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (2005):
Natural Systems Reflection Process
For best results, write down your impressions of this activity in your journal using as many of the following components as you see fit, afterwards, share your interpretations with others.
The Heartwood Path Exchange:
Swap Your Ideas, Impressions, Photos, And News With Others
Your input is vital. Enjoy sharing!
Heartwood Path Axioms: