Also on this website:
SPIRITUALITY: The Role of
Gay Identity in the Transformation of Human Consciousness
Things Our Homosexuality Tells Us about the Nature
of God and the Universe
LIFE IN PERSPECTIVE
A NOVEL ABOUT HEALING.
Simple Answer to the Gay Marriage Debate
Shame on the American People
cause of homosexuality
What Jesus said about Gay
The purpose of homosexuality
of Gay Spirituality
Why Gay Spirituality: Spirituality
as Artistic Medium
"It's Always About You"
Not A Wave
The myth of the
Toby Johnson Believes
The Joseph Campbell Connection,
The Nature of Religion
Gay is a Blessing
"The Evolution of Gay Identity"
"St. John of the Cross &
Dark Night of the Soul."
Avalokiteshvara at the Baths.
Let Me Tell You a Secret
Prostitution and the Nature of Evil
Hu: "God is present here"
retirement and the "freelance monastery"
Seeing with Different Eyes
experience at the Servites' Castle in Riverside
Great Dance according to C.S.Lewis
The Techniques Of The World Saviors
Part 1: Brer Rabbit and the
Part 2: The
Part 3: Jesus
and the Resurrection
Part 4: A
Course in Miracles
Secret of the Clear Light
Understanding the Clear Light
Finding YourTiger Face
Souls Get Reincarnated
and nicknamesake Toby Marotta.
tradition affirms Tat tvam asi (Thou art that). All that is
all that one experiences, all that is joyful or painful—that thou art.
There is nothing from which one stands apart.
Sufism, the mystical tradition in Islam, interprets the
Islamic credo, “There is no God but God,” to mean “There is no reality
but God.” In the reality of Allah, in all human and spiritual
relationships, Allah is the love, the lover, and the beloved.
Rastafarianism, the political, revolutionary, newly arising
religion of Jamaica, the themes of which pervade popular reggae music,
teaches that the personal name of God is “I”; therefore each person,
when he or she speaks of self, speaks of God by name.
Judaism, for all that its unnameable god has become
concretized in the
historical, realistic Jehovah, had seen something analogous to Rasta,
for YHWH speaking from the burning bush, was to have revealed his name
as “I am.”
The Mahayana myth of the bodhisattva declares that there is
being who lives in all, who has vowed to be everybody, and who is the
one being who lives in the universe.
Christianity says it, in the words of St. Paul, “I live, no
but Christ who lives in me.”
And it’s said in the maxim of Texas Hill Country sage and
Mind teacher Walter
“It’s all God.”
Indeed, one might say, twisting
the Sufi credo, that the secret message of mystical religion is the
paradoxical dictum: “There is no god because it’s all God.”
Such myths suggest that we cannot
directly our own nature, that
who we are is elusive and slips off into the emptiness as we begin to
pursue it, so that finally it can be spoken of only in such tantalizing
metaphors. And that is the point of the notion of emptiness: that we
cannot know the true nature of the universe. Though we may know that we
exist, we won’t know what that means in relation to anything else, and
so cannot know what that “we” is that exists. Descartes thought he had
reached a basic truth: “I think, therefore I am.” But he still could
not say what the thinking subject, which he had discovered existed,
We human beings could, after all, be disembodied spirits,
space, interacting with one another; or, perhaps, bottled brains,
preserved in sophisticated life-support systems, interconnected with
intricate neuroelectronic hookups, hallucinating an embodied world
through consensual agreement. These images appear in human thought from
Parmenides and his Poem to popular science fiction and its portrayal of
so-called advanced races. Perhaps such an advanced race is not so much
further evolved in time as more basic in essence, and this portrayal is
a mythical way of expressing a truth about who we really are.
The immensely popular movie series, The Matrix, presents just this
mythology for the future. "The Matrix" is an hallucinated world in which
human minds are kept occupied so that their bodies, held in bio-stasis
by machine technology can provide an efficient source of heat to power
the machines. Only the hero, "Neo" -- the new one -- realizes the
illusion of the Matrix, and so he endures ordeals in order to redeem
mankind from imprisonment.
A Zen story tells of the Taoist sage Chuang-Tse who dreamed
he was a
butterfly. When he awoke he realized that he did not know if he were
Chuang-Tse dreaming he had been a butterfly or if, indeed, he were a
butterfly dreaming he was Chuang-Tse.
The image of the dream is a familiar metaphor for the state
consciousness. The common experience of the dreamer is that he or she
is always the focus of everything that happens. Perhaps that, too, is
the common experience of all of us in waking consciousness, and what we
yet carefully deny lest we be charged with narcissism and solipsism.
But solipsism is the logical implication of emptiness and of the effort
to live the wandering life open to signs of life’s direction. And
solipsism is the logical implication of the everyday reality that we
never experience ourself as an other. We are always different from the
other and curiously mysterious even to ourselves.
When the Buddha was born, having passed from the side of his
Queen Maya, as she leaned against a tree, he took seven steps, pointed
up, pointed down, and said in a voice of thunder: “Worlds above, worlds
below, there is no one in the world like me.”
Joseph Campbell informally appended to his telling of that
tale of the
Buddha’s wondrous birth the remark by D. T. Suzuki that that same thing
is said by each human child when at its birth it cries out for the
first time. “I am here,” the child is saying, “Worlds above, worlds
below, there is no one in the world like me.”
Hierarchy of Heaven and
Earth: A New Diagram of Man in the
Universe, Douglas E. Harding provided a charming example of
sentiment. He said something to the effect that I see that I am not
like others because, whereas all the other people I see have hands,
arms, legs, and a trunk like mine, atop their shoulders is a head. Atop
my shoulders, however, is mounted not a head but a world. I do not
experience myself crammed into an eight-inch ball, peering out through
portholes. I am free and at large in a world that seems to surround me
and yet that obviously comes into being within that part of me that on
other people looks like a head.
Read the opening
chapter of The Myth of the Great Secret about Intimations of the secret
Read about Toby Johnson