Monday, August 18, 2008
The Path Of The Teacher And The Path Of The Student
Remember that all teachers get to the point where they get the feeling they must withdraw. Sometimes this is called - the test of power but there has been confusion about what that means.
The test of power does not mean that the teacher is being tested. It means that the students must show that by their interest in the teachings, by their application in practical and benevolent ways of the teachings that they are then prepared to either pick up some of what the teacher has been teaching and teach it themselves or prepare to act on their own inspirations and see if those inspirations will lead to benevolent applications and most importantly benevolent outcomes.
Of course along the way of benevolent outcomes one does not always feel benevolent or experience benevolence but if one says that - the discomforts one feels are the price one pays, for example, for that benevolence one can easily fall into the trap that says we must strive for this or that and disregard all the suffering and we miss - then you see - the person misses the fact that the discomfort is meant to deter you from that path.
So that is why progress progresses so slowly because you have to feel every bit of the way - is this the best path and if you cannot find a path in any direction that is best or feeling as good as the one you are on in whatever you are pursuing then it is safe to say that one must simply wait.
Sometimes waiting gets a person nervous but eventually there will be a means to move on.
The best teacher of this is water. You will see sometimes a trickle of water or a stream when perhaps a dry stream is beginning to be replenished and sometimes that water will come along moving rapidly and then get to an area where it cannot move. Perhaps there is some block there, perhaps there is a hole or something then this water fills that up and it waits until it can get over, around, under or through that block but until then it waits but it builds up a certain amount of pressure behind that block.
In this way water teaches that the stress it feels is its desire to go to where its going but at the same time while it is waiting it builds up strength in numbers and it creates a certain amount of companionship with its fellow portions and in time it is able to get through, around, above (meaning over) or under that block and move on and in time the block itself will be either worn down by the passage of that water or will simply no longer be a factor.
This is seen very often in geology where one sees so called rainbow bridges of stone where there was once a path of water that went under and left that former block of stone in what was left of it as that bridge. So one learns that the pathway of water is often a good teacher.
Of course since human beings do not live their entire existence in a natural form - since cultures do not always cater to what is natural for human beings and sometimes things are stated to be natural which are either adaptations to what exists or just as often they are attempts by this group or that group to say that something is natural when in fact there is an agenda at work - so one must always have the opportunity to observe nature.
What are the animals doing? If you do not have deer or elk or something like that living around you then what are the little animals doing - the many leggeds. How are they acting? What do they do - but if there is some doubt about what it means to the human being then you can always observe - what is water doing?
If you are living in a dry area then you might have to use - what is the wind doing - alright. That will often help. I know it is not always easy to interpret but I will attempt to help.