Search for Truth (part five)

The knowing method of deciding whether something is true or not is often described as having some special feeling inside. This becomes more trustworthy as we do strong purification practices to gain clarity, then when we feel inside that is true, the inner mind resonates in a special way. However, ordinary unprepared inner mind basis for resonation often comes from earlier happy or unhappy experiences. As we learn from those experiences, we use them to build a non-verbal inner structure in order to establish the reality and validity of subsequent experiences. This is very normal thinking and careful thinking in everyday life. However, there are other factors influencing us in establishing criteria for deeper inner authentic life, the nature of reality. These are the very things we wish to establish beyond any doubt and wish to know intimately. Then, criteria of feeling inside or resonating in a less clear state of being might not be the most careful criteria for establishing truth of reality.

However, this inner resonance feeling in the heart center, not in your physical heart, but in your heart center, feels like something waking up inside rather than an emotion, the usual indication of an experiential process. This is an interesting and different kind of resonance that feels as if you have been looking down, and suddenly you look up and become alert, not just resonant but alert inside.

So there are happy or unhappy experiences held in memories influencing as well as this deeper experience of resonance. If we take all of these various criteria, and mix them together, I am wondering, how do these inner factors affect or change your worldview or ability to seek truth in a valid manner while they are interacting inside? It could be a bit of a confused mixture.

To add to that mixture might be attitudes discussed in earlier columns of this series such as disrespect for the sacred. Even something as sacred as the search for ultimate meaning can be demeaned by cynicism or conflicted doubt and confusion about reality. How would that change our ability to deeply resonate so that we have a more valid method to gain transitional understanding?

There are also other issues surrounding a search for truth. One of them could be a strong agonizing inside because we might be experiencing oppressive feelings of living a life that is a lie. I think many people on spiritual search, sincere spiritual seekers, have this feeling overwhelm them from time to time. It feels like being under a heavy, smelly, wet blanket that is dirty, that maybe a cow pooped on it. It is something heavy, disgusting, uncomfortable, and dark, and we are hidden. We want to just take it, rip it, and throw it off! This is an important issue but something prevents us from throwing that off even though it is the very thing that we want. This is something that I call anxious wanting to be alive. Feeling oppressed while we are looking for what is true and real can add to the confusion of how to make correct discriminations.

However, this suffering we experience by not possessing the truth, not knowing, or not being able to experience this alive feeling can actually be a kind of blessing. The suffering of that angst alerts us and causes us to want to change, isn't that so? If we did not have that feeling, we would not take steps to change ourselves. There could also be a kind of energetic anger associated with this; a feeling of living a false existence not of our own choice could possibly make us angry. Often we do not know who, what, or even why but we feel angry, and upset about life. However, if all goes well, the energy of that determination can cause our inner process, the inner resonance to redouble and begin seriously to seek truth.

Continuing to hone the ability to discriminate carefully in this way, ordinary criteria begin to crumble. You might say, "I cannot believe what my early religious education taught me, and I reject this. I reject what the newspapers say, and I reject this, or I question this, and I question that. I even question my own motives. I question the motives of my parents. I question the motives of my friends." Then you might become difficult to get along with and somehow, nothing satisfies you at that point. Now, mental energies need to be directed into a careful method to get the desired result.

On the other hand, how agonizing could harm us or others is that we could become angry and thinking could deteriorate. When we cannot think clearly due to inner anger we will become more spontaneous, shall we say. This spontaneous new being that cannot think and is angry at everything does not understand the cause of the anger. Somehow, issues of not being able to live life as we wish, not having opportunities to seek truth in the way we want to, somehow, it becomes the fault of others. The very thing that could have been a blessing has made us become quite scary to be around. To be continued…


  1. Luanne ThulstrupMay 18, 2009 at 2:10 PM

    Anger is like the poopy blanket. You don't want to touch it but at some point it needs to be placed in the washing machine. Joy, on the other hand, just might be overrated. Anger is a fine teacher as it points to ones habit of conflict resolution; those constant solutions for ones turning away from the icky or awful feelings. Look at anger, really examine it and set it aside but not before studying what is created through experiencing it. Is it another opportunity for personal growth or more dirty laundry/baggage?

    I wasted some years being unhappy about this and that, nothing worthy of mention now. I have come to the conclusion that it is best to embrace ALL of it, learn and move on. Stop running from either anger or pain which is uncomfortable and find the nugget in the poop!


    Anger gives you another opportunity to look inward and come home to peace.

    It may not seem that way but if you examine it, it can make you laugh.
    Thank you for your posts, Ripoche. So much gratitude for your messages and words of encouragement.


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