Rahasya, 06

Interview with Rahasya

MP:

I would now like to focus a little on Tantra. I am not very familiar with it, but remember hearing or reading an Osho bit on it, where I believe he quoted Atisha as suggesting we “just say Yes” to everything. It may have been another Tantra master. If this is the case (the saying yes), with the apparent reconciliation of all opposites that you spoke of a few responses back, how do actually know when you are saying “yes” or “no”.

Rahasya:

Other phrases common here, describing/encouraging that attitude: Yes to your yeses and yes to your noes; The Big yes; Yes to all there is. It means "yes" to what is. To what is happening right now, whether you are in favor of it or not. The idea can get confusing around areas where we object to something, but then, "what is" is the objection. So the encouragement is to say yes to your objection. Accept the fact of your objection, your no.

Saying "yes" means opening to, accepting, welcoming, possibly loving your experience. In this context, it does not mean giving your agreement to, or obeying another mind. It does mean accepting – not rejecting experiences, thoughts and feelings that you tend to resist, just as much as those you normally tend to accept.

MP:

Is this not actually driven by nature through impulse? Do you say “yes” to everything or just “yes” to the body and its natural unconscious movements? Once we have moved beyond the anger and repression that has been held within due to unlived experiences and fear are we not free to trust this body?

Rahasya:

Pleasure and pain are of course part of our natural survival mechanisms. Just as naturally, we have overriding systems that operate at a higher level of awareness. For example, we may suppress our fear of bee stings, and even endure some pain in order to acquire honey. The psychological trouble most of us have is that the higher level concepts "punishment" and "reward" have become confused with pleasure and pain.

It is possible to punish with something intrinsically pleasurable, and reward with something intrinsically painful. Our tendencies to embrace or reject something have little to do with the natural pleasure/pain system, and everything to do with how our minds have been trained. The Big Yes approach is useful as a tool to explore and unravel trained in associations.

This teaching is also a corrective measure. The culture has trained us into a habit of resistance and rejection in many areas. To find the truth of your own movement and allow your own expression in the world, it is necessary to correct the bias. To move from a biased, overbalanced situation to a position of balance, one has to first over-correct.

It is seldom if ever possible to correct the balance without a wobble the other way first. The timing of this and many other similar lessons of Tantra are much helped by a little personal guidance. And certainly, when one responds more in tune with the Dharma, when one is directly, truly responsive to the real, the teaching reveals its judo.

Yes to your pleasure and Yes to your pain … doing what is natural in the area of pleasure, and doing what is natural in the area of pain … the original masochistic implication has been overturned. Yes to your pain means quickly pulling your hand out of the fire. So, sure, when we operate more or less as designed (not trained) we are in a state of trust, saying "yes" to all that is, and giving little or no regard to what isn't.

This approach of yes to whatever is also accelerates one through the psychological/therapy stage of personal work. On feeling anger, saying yes to it, getting into the punch bag, or cathartic techniques like Osho's Dynamic mediation will reveal a deeper truth. There is pain– suffering.

Saying yes to the pain means letting it bore you out, deepen you, and increase your emotional capacity, your depth. Atisha's Heart Meditation is recommended at this point, and is basically a method for deeply accepting and experiencing suffering of all kinds. Suffering and pain of the inner kind are mostly a protection, something to stop us looking at a truth– something that we lived but could not handle the scale of at the time.

To track it in reverse: It can be, for example, that we were in truth, at least a few times, an inconvenience and an annoyance to our parents– quite manageable, that truth– understandable and even a little funny, from our current capacity and perspective. Once upon a time, though, when our parents were our source of survival, that truth may have been far too scary, too threatening so absolutely impossible to accept and feel at the time. Covered with suffering, it becomes "I didn't feel my parents loved me enough".

The suffering is then covered with anger: "My parents were nasty, damaging to me on account of their refusal to give me love." And how does one know? It does not matter– just taking the attitude of yes means that you bring it to your resistance as well as your acceptance, making you more aware of both. Knowing then follows more or less automatically.

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