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Terma: Treasures of the Mind

Terma: Treasures of the Mind

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Published by Michael Erlewine
Mind terma, the treasures hidden in the mind
Mind terma, the treasures hidden in the mind

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Published by: Michael Erlewine on Nov 30, 2012
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12/09/2012

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TERMA - THE TREASURES OF THE MINDBy Michael Erlewine (Michael@Erlewine.net)I now get to the part that is purely personal, becauseit involves my own experience with mind treasures,and that is, of course, all that I finally know about andhave to offer. So please forgive the personal tone,which you probably are used to anyway. And I will usemy experience with astrology as an example. I am notsure exactly when I began to turn away from books infavor of using the mind, but it was fairly early on. Thereason was simple.Many of the ideas I was most interested in were notcovered in the books I could find and, as an archivist,I could find a lot of books. As many of you know Icurate what is perhaps the largest astrological libraryon the planet, so books I have.I also had worked for some years in the 6th largestlibrary in the world, the University of MichiganGraduate Library, so I already know how to use alibrary to find information. I had email in 1979, but thiswas well before home computers and there was noInternet or email. Do you all realize that the firstreadily available 4-function calculators only appearedaround 1972? Think about that for a moment, please.Very few people were trained in finding information. Iwas.But in my case, most of the information I sought didnot exist, anywhere. Most of my questions (mydharma teacher would spell this word Quest-I-On)had no answers yet, so looking in books was no help.Reluctantly I began to turn inward and look in themind itself. I had to find my own answers; how verydifferent. I had little idea how to do this.
 
I would think and think and think on a topic. Isometimes did this both day and night. But thinking
alone did not often do it. You can’t take the mind by
force of concentration, although concentration isnecessary to focus the mind, at least in the beginning.I soon found out that the effort of constant focusedthinking on a topic (and the mental static it created),itself drowned out any hope of getting answers. Thecreative mind is way more subtle than that. After awhile of just thinking, I would kind of collapse inexhaustion and often fall asleep while cogitating thisway. And that is where my first answers came, after sleep.I would wake up with the answer I was looking for or something at least in the ballpark. It seems that themind offers answers best when it is relaxed, becausestorming the castle with force got me nowhere. I hadfirst to learn to relax.The inner mind speaks, but very gently. It gives up itstreasures only if we can make room for them in thebusyness of our thinking, if we can let the white-noiseof thought die down a little, if we can relax. The mindkind of percolates ideas to the surface, gradually, andas we will allow it. This is why, as pointed out earlier, Ieventually had to give up coffee. The caffeine sped upmy mind and gave me energy, of course, but it alsogenerated a kind of low-level static or white noise thatprevented me from being aware of my own internalcreativity. It just drowned it out.I found this when I would try and write. The dayswhen I would have my morning cup or two of Joewere barren ones for writing. Sure, I would turn outpage after page, but when I read them the next day,they somehow lacked life and creativity. They were
 
the product of caffeine-static, although at the time Ithought I was getting somewhere. Wishful thinking. And that is how it began. As a sidebar, I know I must sound like a teetotaller when I speak of giving up coffee. I did it willingly andthere is a trail of things I gave up stretching back into
my past. I wrote about all of my “addictions” here for those interested in in a booklet called “The Loss of 
Substance: Stories and Notes on Ad
diction.”
 http://astrologysoftware.com/books/index.asp?orig=It was at first through sleep that I could relax enoughto allow the answers that were in my mind (andwaiting for me) to emerge. If my mind was clear (unaltered by caffeine or whatever), those inner answers would just be there and waiting for me whenI woke up. They would just pop to mind and I wouldbe aware of them. It seems so obvious now.However, it took me a long time to grasp that it wasmy own inability to relax and let the mind speak thatwas holding me back. It was like driving with a jerkyclutch (for those old enough to remember manualclutches). I would kind of lurch forward by jerks andstops. I had little control over it because rather thanlet it come to me, I would always reach forward and
try to “get” it. And that never worked.
  Anyway this went on for many years, two stepsforward, and one step back. I was getting the answersI wanted, but I did not exactly understand how. It waslike rubbing my tummy and patting my head at thesame time. It was not easy to do.Yet I gradually stopped searching through books andbegan to unearth treasures in my mind. Theseincluded a number of astrological techniques that had

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