28 July 2013
I CONFUSE A STUDENT BECAUSE I DO NOT AGREE WITH OR VALIDATE A TEACHER HE LIKES:
I hope your surgery recovery is continuing to progress and has revealed new insights to you. I am writing because I have some more questions and thoughts I wanted to put forth to you.
First, I have to press you on why you don't recommend Hale Dwoskin. I have now been to 2 of Hale's retreats and had some great experiences there. His teachings have had a great impact on my life. It is peculiar to me that you and him teach such similar things yet appear to not get along. Along with Lester, the 2 teachers he draws the most from are Nisargadatta and Ramana, just like you. He often uses a process similar to the "hunting the I" inquiry that you talk about. Basically he will ask you whose feeling/thought this is. If you are identified with the false center, the answer will come "mine". Then he asks, "In this moment, if you do not go into memory, can you actually find this me?" For me this has often caused my mind to come to a complete stop.
Not only do his teachings seem quite effective, but as a person he seems to be very genuine and an embodiment of what he teaches. I have talked to him in private several times, have both praised him and called him out on things, yet his mood never seems to change. He always seems to be in a content, nonchalant state. I've never gotten the sense that he wants anything from me or is ever putting me down or up. His answers to people's questions always seem to be lucid and insightful as well. Most of the retreat he just free styles, letting people bring any issues up and then taking it from there.
I write all this to you because when teachers appear to not get along, it arouses resistance in me. It means either one or both of them are not genuine. It calls into question the trust I have placed in teachers or teachings. Does that make any sense? In your last email you said you don't know what Hale teaches these days. How can you not recommend him if you don't even know what he teaches? I don't mean to be too abrupt, but that was a question on my mind after your response.
Anyways, I had more questions for you on other topics, but this email is long enough. Thanks for all you do in teaching and helping others.
Have a good night,
Me: You assume that any two "genuine" teachers mostly agree about everything. Hale may help many, but what help? So he was a nice guy to you and spoke clearly? What does that mean? He is authentic, enlightened, an "spiritual expert?"
Your arguments supports the idea that any two articulate experts, that listen and can help someone in any field, must support the expertise of another expert or else clients get confused and don't know who to listen to, or their general faith in experts is called into question.
Good. Self-Realization s about uncovering who you are, not who reliable experts are.