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Planetary Nebula NGC 6543 / Gaseous Cocoon Around an Exploding Star

Mysterious stellar fireworks create expanding gas shells and blowtorch-like jets which form a spectacularly intricate and symmetrical structure. The nebula is a fossil record of the late stages of the star's evolution. January 1995 (Courtesy NASA)





   
   


Short Bio Sketch

Where do I begin?
Hmmm..........at the beginning, of course!
And the relevant beginning finds me in Catholic grade school, asking question after question of the nuns and priests who were teaching me. And, even in the 3rd grade, I remember asking a particular question that stumped one of the nuns to the point of her getting flustered and even angry with me! To wit: "What if," I asked, "...on the way to confessing his sins, a man happened to die just before he reached the Confessional [the place where one confesses to the priest] with a mortal sin in his soul...would he still go to hell?"

At 8 years old--and I only mention this because it was painful to me that even at that age I was seeing through the hypocricy, whereas educated adults were not!--I became aware of the idea of intent as it applied to one's state of mind or conscience. Yet, the nun had no provision for something that went outside the letter of the law, as it was evidently taught to her under the banner of Catholicism. And not only this, my question exposed another, perhaps more significant fallacy: the idea of eternal damnation.

This is just one example of many--instances that asserted doctrine which seemed to violate gut-level commonsense regarding the significance of one's behavior as it applied to the state of the soul.

In the midst of all this I was very devout to the mood and method leading to the "religious experience"; yet I sensed all along that there was a serious defficiency of justice in the tenets of this organized brand of Christianity.

This led me to pursue my own investigation into Christ's teachings. This, in turn, led me (at age 14) to an investigation of spirituality in general, and on into studying the interpretations provided first by Hinduism and Buddhism, particularly Rinzai Zen Buddhism. A few years later, while maintaining the essential insights gained through Zen, I discovered the esoteric approach of Theosophy (a spiritual doctrine adopting a liberal approach exploring and synthesizing ALL religions, philosophies and science as potential avenues where truth may be discovered...its motto being: "There is no religion higher than Truth.")

Then, using Theosophy as a foundational backdrop, I explored various related approaches including Zen, the Toltec shamanism of Castaneda, the Qabalah, Freemasonry, and the Tibetan Bardo Thodol (Book of the Dead), among others, shaping an eclectic metaphysics.

And now (July 1996), 35 years later, after a more in-depth study of the approach in Hinduism known as Advaita Vedanta, my former perspective has been so revolutionized that what I was seeing and understanding--as recent as 3 years ago now--has, as a further consequence, been turned on its ear!

Here's a more detailed bio sketch.

Books by f maiello:

    Freedom

      Based on the Vedantic approach to the Ageless Wisdom Teachings, this is a practical manual offering clear and incontrovertible proof that we are already free and in fact Self-realized!

      Here's the Introduction.

    Forever Now Calendar

      Compilation of aphorisms, insights and meditations for the entire year.

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Please Note: Although I have mainly explored these teachings through the eyes of the Hindu Vedanta, is not to imply that this method/approach is inherently superior to any other; it's merely that, based on my experience, its vantage point has proved to be the clearest and most direct.

Overview of the Path I Took

Having studied Theosophy for over three decades where, through the course of my research into the various world religions (especially Hinduism, Buddhism and Christianity), I came upon what I've been diligently seeking and hoping to find all my life: a metaphysical approach that had the ability to practically integrate daily living with spiritual Being (the Effect [of Life] with its Cause [in Spirit]), which turned out to be the esoteric teachings of the Hindu Vedanta, found mainly within the Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita. This led me to reading such related texts as Yoga Vashistha, Tripura Rahasya, Advaita Bodha Deepika, Vivekachudamani, Ribhu Gita, and Ashtavakra Gita. Beyond this, however, I owe everything to my teacher, Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi.

In these pages, as well as in other metaphysical writings, the mention of Self-realization or Enlightenment typically carries little weight to the uninitiated. Just as the taste of orange juice can't be fathomed by one who's never tried it, neither will the idea of Enlightenment be appreciated if it hasn't at least been glimpsed. Understanding this will enable the aspirant to gain an advantage in terms of inspiration, where otherwise only a meager degree is conjured.

Yet, paradoxically, it's all we really are! We are already fully Self-realized Beings. How this is possible is actually quite simple. You see, it's only our fantastic Mind that systematically, moment-to-moment, talks us out of it!

Consider what might happen if you were capable of carrying on with your day without the habitual ideological judgments bending and shaping your reality. (Incidentally, the fact is that these thought judgments don't avail reality at all!--instead they destroy it....because their very nature is fleeting and changing; whereas reality, by definition, must be permanent.) Obviously, the result can't be translated into words...only a trial run can deliver its worth.

The point is worth reiterating: Unless Enlightenment is at least glimpsed, it's merely a word with some exotic appeal, devoid of the inspirational impact it would otherwise carry. And yet we ARE the core essence of it. (Only Enlightenment can reveal this, which is trans-logical.)

Here's an attempt at conveying the pith of the subtle power inhering within this Light residing in the Heart: If only you pierce through the ongoing judgment that Enlightenment and Ignorance are always [fatally] competing. Then, when NEITHER is a consideration, the truth will suddenly dawn--and there's not a jot of reflection that will follow(!)...everything is seen to have been, all along(!), on auto-pilot...effortless rhythm: this is the silk-flow of pure Being that registers as omnipresent CONSCIOUSNESS radiating silent Bliss; and yet, not even this, but________

Transmission of the Lamp

I'd rather transmit this knowledge through the only effective means possible: silence.

However, many more wouldn't benefit who otherwise could--and, yet (and please forgive the necessary curve ball about to be thrown), it really matters not in the LEAST if they didn't! Why? Because EVERYONE, despite their determinant awareness otherwise (i.e. regardless of what they believe they're unaware of), is ALREADY fully enlightened! And this concept specifically typifies the core essence of the Vedanta. How this is possible, or conceived of, is availed through the careful evaluation of the nature of the mind: where it is understood, through introspection, that countless detours, diversions, and discolorations are manufactured within its crafty orbit. And the only way out of such an infinite barrage of machinations is by conducting a steady focus on its state of being. Whereupon it may soon be discovered that it has no substantial matter of existence. It's rather seen to be a transient phantom, as such...as a separate entity spinning separative domains of events, ideas, ideologies, judgments, etc. That is, it possesses a modicum of Reality, yet its degree is infinitesimal! It only appears to be real, as such. Careful investigation can indeed bear this out.

DO WE NEED TO PRACTICE THE ART OF BEING???

We ARE naturally!
That is, we are natural masters of that everpresent state of Being Itself. This is self-evident.
However, what we do need is to be capable of not falling under the powerful spell of the mind and its relentless categorizing dictations!
It's Judgments that kill our Bliss.
Yet, even this [apparent condition] is a non-issue!
Why?
Because even the idea that the mind is tricking us is itself a trick!!
"Therefore," in the words of my guru, "the best course is to remain silent."

If you would like to schedule a live chat with me, let me know by email. You would need the chat server AIM (AOL Instant Messenger).

DISCLAIMER: All the writings herein by "egodust"--as implied by the name-- are not traceable to any individual that can be identified as being their generator...and the apparent identity of "egodust" is, alongside the information disseminated on the web, irrelevant...especially in light of the fact that such information shared is, in his view, unnecessary. Furthermore, "egodust" claims that the process by which this is happening is incomprehensible to him; and that the merits of whether or not it [the alleged metaphysical knowledge] is reflective of, or pointing toward, 'the truth' is left solely for the reader to determine.

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Act as though everything matters... BE as though nothing does.

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