We try to fill the abyss of wanting—the feeling of loneliness, emptiness, meaninglessness, incompleteness, and so on—that calls to us throughout our life until we come to the conclusion that no attainments or acquisitions will be sufficient. And then we may intuit that finding what we're looking for may be a subtractive process. But what do we cast off or back away from: possessions ... companions ... responsibilities?
As wise predecessors through the ages have testified, knowing the self ends our existential suffering. And knowing the self doesn't involve attaining a higher selfhood but seeing beyond the faulty beliefs that obscure what we truly are now and always have been. The Indian guru Nisargadatta Maharaj stated his conviction about that as follows:
There is no second, or higher self to search for.
You are the highest self, only give up the false ideas you have about your self.
The November Gathering provides a wonderful opportunity for expanding a vector toward self-realization and building momentum to carry us through thick and thin times.
The registration deadline for the November Gathering is Friday, November 11th.
Our weekend theme is Casting Off Illusion. Isaac Hill will serve as TAT's meeting host and facilitator.
Friday, November 18, 2011
5:00 to 7:30 PM - Set-up and arrivals
7:30 to 8:00 PM - Ladderwork Session. We'll share ideas about helping others on the spiritual path.
8:00 to 9:00 PM - Seeking the Answer by Dave Weimer. Dave will share his thoughts about a seeker's life based on his personal experiences as a seeker. He'll report on his discoveries, and encourage Q&A to share and compare notes with other seekers. » Read Pieces from my Road for an example of Dave's writings.
9:00 to ? - Free time; open discussion
Saturday, November 19, 2011
8:30 to 10:00 AM - Arrivals and pot luck continental breakfast
10:00 to 10:15 AM - Welcome and introduction with Isaac Hill
10:15 to 11:30 AM - Casting Off Illusion. Led by Shawn Pethel. A seeker's story of disillusionment with science, religion, and society. » Read What Scares You? for an example of Shawn's writings.
11:45 AM to 1:30 PM - Pot luck lunch and open discussion
1:30 to 2:45 PM - Seeing Self as Consciousness with Crystal Bacon. Having recently experienced awakening as a merging with consciousness, Crystal is in a place of ongoing discernment of the nature of consciousness and how it experiences itself through the Self. Ramana Maharshi defines self realization as when "the 'I' casts off the illusion of the 'I' and yet remains as 'I.' Through questions, poems, and insightful quotations from a variety of teachings, this session will explore the Self as Consciousness.
2:45 to 3:00 PM - Break
3:00 to 4:00 PM - Rising Above Thought by Phil Franta. Phil will discuss selected teachings from Eckhart Tolle. Topics will include the origin of fear, creating a gap in the mind stream, dissolving unconsciousness, creating the ego identification with the pain-body, the wisdom of surrender, and ending the delusion of time. He will end the presentation with a short process on the power of Presence.
4:00 to 4:15 PM - Break
4:15 to 5:15 PM - Optional rapport sitting with Paul Constant or meditative walk.
5:30 to 7:00 PM - Pot luck dinner and open discussion
7:00 to 9:00 PM - The Sense of Self by Augie Monge. Does the person you take yourself to be really exist... Is there a "you"? An experiential investigation of the day-to-day sense of self. » Read Regarding THE Subject at Hand for an example of Augie's writings.
9:00 to ? - Free time; open discussion
Sunday, November 20, 2011
8:00 to 9:00 AM - Pot luck continental breakfast and open discussion.
9:00 to 10:15 AM - Inner Tennis Balls with Dan Garmat.
Is the inner self throwing balls over the fence to the outer self, only to see them bouncing off a helmet? This session will explore this—and what may or may not be coming over your mind's fence. » Read Benefits and Blocks to Group Work for a sample of Dan's writings.
10:15 to 10:45 AM - Break
10:45 AM to Noon - Self-Stories with Ben Rainey. Looking at the stories we tell each other and ourselves about ourselves. » Read Gatha for a sample of Ben's writings..
Noon to 12:30 PM - Weekend wrap-up. Feedback from participants and questions for session leaders. Moderated by Mike Gegenheimer.
12:30 PM - Departing words followed by an optional lunch at a local restaurant.
Location and Facilities
T he event is being held at Penn Scenic View in southwestern Pennsylvania. The facility includes a conference room in Stable Lodge, which has an upstairs bunkhouse room and several dormitory rooms for overnight lodging. Additionally, the Red Oak and Green Hemlock cabins are available for lodging and break-out meeting locations. Penn Scenic provides bed linens, pillows, and bath towels for overnight guests. During the registration process, we will do our best to accommodate room preferences, but all guests should expect to share sleeping quarters and bathrooms with other participants. On-site camping is available in the lawn area near Stable Lodge.
Penn Scenic View, at 118 Scenic View Lane, Rockwood, PA 15557, is one and a half hours from the Pittsburgh International Airport.
The November Gathering fees per person for TAT members are as follows:
The non-member fees per person are:
Full-time students should contact for information on discounted registration fees.
Use PayPal to pay with these credit cards (PayPal account not necessary). PayPal is "fast, free and secure" and allows payment by credit card or electronic withdrawal from a bank account. Checks (in U.S. dollars, drawn on a U.S. bank) or money orders (domestic only) made payable to the TAT Foundation are also accepted if received by the registration deadline.
* The TAT Foundation hosts four public events each year. Registration fees vary depending on the event location. Because we are an all-volunteer organization, please allow up to 5 business days before receiving confirmation of your payment. See our membership overview or email if you have questions about registration fees.
Space is limited, so registration is required. The deadline for registration is Friday, November 11th. Upon receipt of your registration, a packet containing information on lodging and driving directions will be sent to you. You may cancel your registration on or before Friday, November 11th and receive a refund, minus a $5 handling fee. Cancellations after November 11th will not be refunded. Because ADA-compliant facilities are limited in the Stable Lodge, persons with a disability should contact before registering.
Meals are potluck style for Saturday and Sunday continental breakfasts, Saturday and Sunday lunches, and Saturday dinner. As a good rule-of-thumb, we ask that each event participant bring enough food to feed 8 people (about $10). Sorry, we cannot reduce fees for those who prefer to bring their own food. TAT will provide coffee and tea.
For those who register using the alternative (off-site) lodging option, the following overnight accommodations are located near Penn Scenic View:
For more information...
For checks (in U.S. dollars drawn on a U.S. bank) or money orders (domestic only), payable to the TAT Foundation, mail to:
What is the TAT Foundation?
A group encouraging people to think rather than believe. A group determined to help people find ways and means to answer their deepest philosophical questions. A gathering of folks who are not afraid to be honest with one another. An island of hope and sanity (or at least the hope for sanity!). Last, but not least, TAT is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit educational organization chartered in 1973.