The TAT Forum: a spiritual magazine of essays, poems and humor.

TAT Forum

September 2021

TAT September Virtual Gathering: Love, Friendship, and the Return Home. September 11-12, 2021.

September 11-12 virtual spiritual gathering details


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Convictions & Concerns

TAT members share their personal convictions and/or concerns

Beyond Self-Esteem

[The spiritual path] has two distinct stages, or two distinct phases.

[As I was considering that], an image came to me: the image of the mountain I had grown up by. The shape of the mountain is like this … [draws a mountain with two sections, one long and one high]. And while I was thinking about the path having two distinct phases, it struck me that there was something like this [gestures to the mountain]. And I would say that this phase [the long part of the mountain], for me, I would call it the psychological phase. And I would say that this part here [the high part of the mountain], was the spiritual phase.

I should tell you that this [psychological] phase probably took about 30 years. I was always reading stuff and trying out everything and anything. And when I was going from the psychological phase to the spiritual phase, I remembered something that I had read by Saint Teresa of Avila; she was a Spanish mystic from about 500 years ago. She had been a spiritual director in her convent for many years. There were lots of nuns, so she had a lot of experience with this. And towards the end of her life somebody said to her, “What was the biggest problem you encountered as a spiritual director?” And what she said was, “Trying to get people past their self-esteem.” That self-esteem was the problem; getting them out of the mode of self-esteem.

I remember reading that, and then thinking about self-esteem. “So, what is self-esteem?” “Where do I get my self-esteem from?” And I came up with a list of 100 characteristics. [I thought], “Tess is high on the list for this one, and low on the list for that one, or medium on that list.” So I'm looking at that and I'm thinking, “Well, that's all in the relative world. That's all to do with, you know, judgment and comparison and so on.” And I thought, “Okay, so Teresa is saying that this is the sticking point ... well there must be some alternative ... [how] else can i judge myself?”

So I started thinking about the intrinsic value of a person. My first question had been, “On what authority do I have my self-esteem?” And I would also notice that if I'm in one set of company I might feel pretty high self-esteem. And in another company, low self-esteem. But we all operate like that. So then I started to think, “What is the intrinsic value of a person?”

And at some stage I remembered something my mother used to say to us as children. My mother had nine children, and she would say something like, “You're all God's gift to me. All of my children; you're God's gift.” So the idea came into my head: “I'm God's own child. My parents considered me a gift from God." So if I'm a gift from God, isn't that quite a different thing from my self-esteem program?

Sometime around then, I was sitting in front of my jewelry box one day. And there were some things in it I was looking at: “There's a gold ring, and there's a gold bracelet, and there's the gold brooch.” And the thought struck me: "The value of each of those things is in the fact that they're gold, not that they’re a ring, or whatever." And then I thought, ”The value is in the goldness rather than the thingness.” And this opened ... do you get what I'm saying there? So this opened my mentality about self, my self-esteem thing, to being so that the intrinsic value is in the divinity, or the godliness. After that, I had a kind of a new paradigm with which to look at the world. And of course, if I'm God's child, everybody else is God's child, too....

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Editor's note: Thanks to Brett S. for recommending this video and for transcribing the opening section of Tess's talk. He also mentioned the TAT YouTube channel. Please email your impressions/questions—and suggestions for additions to the TAT YouTube channel—to the .


TAT Foundation News

It's all about "ladder work" – helping and being helped

Call To Action For TAT Forum Readers

With the intention of increasing awareness of TAT's meetings, books, and Forum among younger serious seekers, the TAT Foundation is now on Instagram (@tatfoundation).

You can help! A volunteer is producing shareable text-quote and video content of Richard Rose and TAT-adjacent teachers. We need your suggestions for short, provocative 1-3 sentence quotes or 1 minute or less video clips of people like Rose, Art Ticknor, Bob Fergeson, Tess Hughes, Bob Cergol, Bart Marshall, Shawn Nevins, Anima Pundeer, Norio Kushi, Paul Rezendes, Paul Constant, & other favorites. (See below for an example).

Please send favorite inspiring/irritating quotes—from books you have by those authors, from the TAT Forum, or any other place—to . If you have favorite parts of longer videos (ex: from a talk at a past TAT meeting), please email a link to the video and a timestamp.

Thank you!

Project: Beyond Mind, Beyond Death II

BMBD cover image TAT Press's Beyond Mind, Beyond Death (BMBD), published in 2008, covers selections from the first seven years of the TAT Forum, from November 2000 to December 2007.

We've had 14 additional years of monthly TAT Forum issues since then. And we're getting ready to launch a project to solicit recommendations from all readers for a 2nd volume of BMBD from the seven years of monthly issues spanning January 2008 to December 2014.

Our approach will be to have a brief, interactive survey each week for participants to rate the items in one issue of the Forum for inclusion in volume II. That will take about 20 months, during which time volunteer co-editors Abhay D. and Michael R. will arrange the selections into chapters and organize the book's contents. Within 2 years BMBD II should be available in paperback and e-book formats.

Your participation to any extent practical for you will help the best formulation of Beyond Mind, Beyond Death II. If you haven't opted-in for participation notices, you can sign up at BMBD_II.htm, where you also can find links to all active surveys.

TAT Foundation Press's latest publication: Always Right Behind You: Parables & Poems of Love & Completion

Always Right Behind You: Parables & Poems of Love & Completion by Anima Pundeer and Art Ticknor is now available in paperback and in Kindle e-book format.

"Forged in friendship, and written from an intimate understanding of the human dilemma, Always Right Behind You is an open window on higher wisdom." ~ Bob Fergeson, author of The Listening Attention, Dark Zen: A Guru on the Bayou, and contributing author of Beyond Mind, Beyond Death.

"Woven between the threads of Art and Anima’s friendship and spiritual journeys are snippets of wisdom, provocative questions and honest stories, all in the name of sharing this most profound and rewarding aspect of life. What a lovely book!" ~ Tess Hughes, author of This Above All: A Journey of Self-Discovery.

Please add your review to the Amazon listing. It makes a difference!

Random rotation of
TAT Foundation Books & Videos

2021 TAT Meeting Calendar

February 6, 2021
April 10-11, 2021
June 12-13, 2021
August 13-15, 2021 (in-person gathering; canceled)
* September 11-12, 2021 (virtual replacement) *
November 5-7, 2021

Until 2020, TAT held four in-person meetings each year: one in April, one in November, and two in the months between April and November. With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, all four meetings for 2020 were held online.

We started 2021 with a one-day virtual gathering on Saturday, February 6th, followed by a virtual gathering on Saturday and Sunday, April 10 and 11. Our next gathering was a virtual gathering on Saturday and Sunday, June 12 and 13.

We planned to revert back to in-person weekend gatherings with our August meeting. But we canceled it, with full refunds, as COVID infections ramped back up, holding an informal Saturday in-person gathering for folks who wanted to participate. And we scheduled a virtual gathering for September 11-12 as a replacement. See Love, Friendship, and the Return Home for details and registration.

We'll determine whether the November meeting will be in-person or virtual as we get closer to that date. We're currently planning to have another February online gathering in 2022. Comments or questions? Please email .


The following video recordings of presentations from a previous April TAT meeting are available on YouTube:

Richard Rose spent his life searching for the Truth, finding it, and teaching others to find their Way. Although not well known to the public, he touched the lives of thousands of spiritual seekers through his books and lectures and through personal contacts with local study groups that continue to work with his teachings today. Meet Richard Rose is a 34-minute audio recording of an audiovisual presentation by Michael Whitely at the August 2017 TAT meeting that explores the arc of Richard Rose's life as seeker, finder, family man, and teacher.

Downloadable/rental versions of the Mister Rose video and of April TAT talks Remembering Your True Desire (details).

door on TAT Community Building 2010

See TAT's Facebook page.
Photo of TAT's open door by Phil Franta.

Local Group News

Amsterdam coat of arms Update for the Amsterdam, NL Self-Inquiry Group:
The group is not holding meetings currently, but email for information.

Update from the Central New Jersey Group:
In a change from our regular meeting format, our group invited a guest to work with us on the topic of “poems which inspire us.” Our guest, Abhay D, had each member read their poem, and helped the member inquire more deeply into themselves, through follow-up questions. A productive meeting!
      Some of the poems shared: “Friendship” by Richard Rose; “If,” Rudyard Kipling; “Nirvana Shatakam,” Shankara; “O me! O Life!” by Walt Whitman; “A Psalm of Life,” Longfellow.
      Abhay shared poems “How I became a Warrior” by Jeff Foster and also some amazing poems written by his own hand. Thank you Abhay!
      We hold regular Zoom meetings on Friday evenings. ~ Contact: www.facebook.com/groups/429437321740752.

Update from the Central Ohio Non-Duality Group:
The Columbus, Ohio self-inquiry group, now known as the Central Ohio Non-Duality Group, has continued to meet virtually on Tuesday evenings at 6:30PM during the Coronavirus pandemic. Please email one of the people's names below if you wish to get a link to the meeting. Meeting format involves discussion of topics of interest to seekers and often bridges from the concerns, questions and interests of the core members in attendance into the topic which we intend to discuss. We look forward to the easing of restrictions to the point where we feel comfortable meeting again in person. ~ For further information, contact , , or . We're also on Facebook.

Irish clover Update from the Dublin, Ireland self-inquiry group:
We meet every second Wednesday on Zoom. We are working using two different approaches. The first is the standard confrontation approach of people giving an update on what was coming for them in the previous period, in terms of their path. The second is the distribution of a piece in advance for reflection. We will continue in this vein for the time being, using either a general update or a piece for reflection shared in advance. ~ Contact for more information.

email icon crystal Update from the email self-inquiry groups:
The Women's Online Confrontation (WOC) group consists of weekly reports where participants can include:
     > What is on your mind?
     > Any projects that you want to be held accountable for?
     > Responses to a selected excerpt (in the previous report).
     > Comments/responses/questions for other participants.
     A philosophical/spiritual excerpt with two or three questions is included in each report. Based on what we share, participants ask questions to help get clarity about our thinking. The intention is to help each other see our underlying beliefs about who we are.
     One rule we try to adhere to is not to give advice or solve problems. The number of participants, to make it work efficiently, is between 4 and 7 including the leader.
We had two new folks join in February, resulting in two men's groups with 8 participants in each. They (the weekly exchanges, not the participants :-) function like slow-motion self-inquiry confrontation meetings, which has its pros and cons. We alternate by asking each other questions one week then answering them the following week. We're currently trying to keep it to each of us asking just one question to each participant--switching from a shotgun to a rifle approach. Participants provide brief updates of highlights from the previous week and optional updates on progress toward objectives that they use the reports for accountability on.
Both the women's and the men's email groups welcome serious participants. ~ Contact or for more information.

   TAT Press publishes Anima's and Art's book: Always Right Behind You: Parables & Poems of Love & Completion.

Update from the Gainesville, FL self-inquiry group:
The Alachua County library reopened its meeting rooms on July 5th, and we were the first group to meet after the reopening. We decided to change our meeting day from Sunday to Saturday, at the same time as previously (2 to 4 PM). Our first meeting was on July 10th, and subsequent meetings are scheduled for alternate Saturdays with an occasional extra week between meetings due to holidays or the TAT meeting schedule and our group's associated retreats. ~ Email or for more information.

   TAT Press publishes three of Art's books: Solid Ground of Being: A Personal Story of the Impersonal, Beyond Relativity: Transcending the Split Between Knower & Known and Sense of Self: The Source of All Existential Suffering?

Update from Galway, Ireland:
Tess Hughes is starting a women's group on Wednesday evenings, 7pm Dublin time, using Zoom. It will begin mid September. Sessions last 90-120 minutes usually. Anyone who's interested in joining can contact .

   TAT Press publishes Tess's easy to read, profound This Above All, the story of her journey of Self-Discovery.

Update from the newly listed GMT Support Group for Seekers:
We meet every Sunday gmt 17.30, live on Google Meet. Rapport and confrontation, talk and exchange. Someone mostly brings a theme, like a text, poem or whatever to set the mood. Then 10 minutes of silent rapport after which everyone gets their turn on the "hot seat" for 10-15 minutes—the group listens to what the person has to say about the theme then asks friendly questions—depending on how many participants we are. The questioning is aimed at providing material for self-inquiry. There have been sessions in which we just chatted, but that is more the exception. ~ Contact

The GMT support group group is planning a weekend intensive retreat in West Sussex, UK on Friday-Sunday, Nov. 12–13.
The theme will be "Make your whole life a prayer":
      "To make your life a prayer is to hold in your heart your greatest desire, your highest intention, and be prepared to do anything and everything you are asked as the granting of it unfolds. In practice, you will be asked to do far less than you might imagine, but just enough to give you opportunities to waver. Don't. Hold up your end of the bargain and your desire will be fulfilled." - Bart Marshall
~ E-mail for more details.

Update from the Greensburg, PA self-inquiry group:
I am meeting every Saturday morning with three of my former Greensburg SIG group participants who are into non-dualist paths, such as Adyashanti and Mooji. There is also another participant, a professional psychologist who is interested in eastern philosphy and who wasn't in my SIG group but makes a great addition to our proceedings. These fellows are sincere seekers. We spend our time discussing our respective paths and comparing notes. Our new venue is a place called the White Rabbit Cafe in Greensburg. I'm hoping that the lull here has ended and that we're ready to be more dynamic again.
~ Contact if interested in local self-inquiry meetings.

An update from the self-inquiry group in Houston, TX:
The backyard patio meetings are now moved to Zoom meetings, which take place at 4 pm on Saturdays. There are 3 active and inspired participants right now. Topics vary from Mr. Rose's writings to "What is on your mind?" ~ Contact for more information.

"Ignoramuses Anonymous" blog
Ignoramuses Anonymous is for seekers to explore questions together…a fellowship of seekers for whom ignorance of the absolute truth had become a major problem. It started as a blog for Pittsburgh PSI meeting members back in 2009. Welcoming discussion on the path.
To get notices of new posts, you can subscribe by RSS feed or by email.

   See the 2020/11/28 post: Four-day isolation retreat at TAT Center, with photos and YouTube clips.

Update from the Lynchburg, VA self-inquiry group:
We have been meeting on Thursday evenings from 7pm—8:30pm, online, via zoom. Norio Kushi, Paul Rezendes, and Bob Harwood are consistent guests. We've also had some other interesting characters show up from time to time. Topics come from readings or questions brought up by our members. These are sent out, along with the zoom invitation each week. Recently we posted some "considerations" for joining our group:
** Try to frame your comments as questions to Norio, Paul, or Bob. Draw these questions from you own experience rather than generalities. Maintain attention and discussion on the question rather than philosophical musings.
** Question other participants, in the spirit of group-assisted self inquiry, but without attempting to lead them to any particular conclusion or bring attention to yourself.
**Allow for and attend to the silence and the space that is always present. When you aren't speaking, see that as your role—to hold that space.
**Question, in yourself, the use of personal story-telling and quoting others—though sometimes both are helpful and appropriate.
**Consider the way in which you are listening. Does it have a quality of acquisitiveness or openness?
**Continue to question your own intention for coming to this meeting and let that guide any comments/questions/discussion.
~ Please contact or if you're interested in being on the email list.

Update from the New York City self-inquiry group:
The New York City Self-Inquiry group meets by Zoom every Monday from 6-8 PM EST. The link is https://us02web.zoom.us/j/3098361863?pwd=anY5OFlMT0pNMld6VXJDb0Z2SjY0UT09. For those joining by phone, the number is +1 929 205 6099 US (New York), with Meeting ID: 309 836 1863, and Passcode: 895478. More details, as well as our weekly discussion topics, are available on our MeetUp page (link above) and via email at .

Update for the Online Self-Inquiry Book Club:
The book club is meeting weekly to discuss previous TAT Forums as they are the focus for the Beyond Mind Beyond Death II project. It’s also meeting monthly on Richard Rose's Psychology of the Observer: The Path to Reality Through the Self by John Kent and will sync up with the new ProBoard book club discussion board on the Kent publication. Upcoming meeting schedule:
> Saturday 9/4: John Kent Thesis Chapter 1: Psychology of the Observer: Origins and Purpose
> Sunday 9/5: Jan 2009 Forum: If you have moments truth feels at hand and you turn away, where does that urge come from, “I want to live…”?
> Sunday 9/19: Feb 2009 Forum: Does the knower need to be known to get what you want out of life?
> Sunday 9/26: Mar 2009 Forum: What really is “here?” What do you see “right now?”
> Saturday 10/2: John Kent Thesis Chapter 2: Literature Revue
~ For more information on book club participation, see the meeting website (link above). TAT Forum readers are welcome to drop in any time.

Update from the recently listed Online Video Confrontation Group:
The Monday Night Online Confrontation Group is going strong with a core group of participants and room for a few more. Now meeting at 7:30 pm EST (previously at 7 pm), using the online video conference platform from Zoom. The goal of the group is to practice confrontation/group self-inquiry. ~ If you're interested, email or .

   Isaac and AJ interviewed Art Ticknor on their Plant Cunning Podcast series, where they "invite herbalists, ethnobotanists, farmers, mages, fungi experts, community organizers and all kinds of other interesting people to the microphone to share their wisdom and experiences with us": Self Realization with Art Ticknor.

Update from the Pittsburgh, PA self-inquiry group:
=> Book discussion of Be As You Are Ramana Maharshi dialogues: Richard Grizinski leads the Monday study group, continuing Sept 6 with Ch. 19 & 20; Richard will start with a new book Mon, Sept 20 TBD. Email selfinquirer (link below) to receive an on-going Zoom invitation for Monday meetings.
=> Online group confrontation and individual contributions every Wednesday, 8:00 pm via Zoom:
- Wed, Sept 1: A Story About a Kite: "You have to throw yourself up and catch the breeze" and Wm Samuel article on catching glimpses
- Wed, Sept 8: Guest presenter to be announced
- Wed, Sept 15: Tyler T. will host our meeting, topic TBD
- Sun, Sept 19, 3pm EST: "Dublin, Ireland and the Americas" joint confrontation meeting, topic TBD
- Wed, Sept 22: Michael R. will host: Pay attention to the ways you’re spending your time ... list your top 5 energy/time expenditures ... based on this information: What are the top 5 things you are seeking, and why?
- Wed, Sept 29: B.H. from the NYC Self-inquiry Group will host, topic TBD
=> All Forum subscribers are welcome to join us. Email to receive weekly topics with preparatory notes and Zoom invitations.

Update from the Portland, OR self-inquiry group:
A small group of us meet most Sundays at a coffee shop. The format for our meetings is to give each person 20 minutes or so to talk about whatever is coming up for them in their practice and to answer questions from the others. ~ Email for more information.

Update from the Raleigh, NC Triangle Inquiry Group:
The group is starting up again after a hiatus, now with Zoom online meetings. ~ Email for details.

Update for the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area TAT Center:
Bob Fergeson spent a year as resident teacher before returning to Colorado in March. Mark Wintgens continues as our chief-seeker in residence and invaluable caretaker. He is looking forward to hosting retreats and meetings for local group members as well as all TAT seekers. And TAT is looking forward to the possibility of hosting the August 2021 TAT meeting at the Center. ~ Email for information about the TAT Center.

Update from the Richmond Self Inquiry Group:
There isn't a Richmond self inquiry group at the moment…it never really got off the ground. I'm considering a few different approaches for round three, but it'll be at least a few months away before that takes form. ~ Email for information about future meetings and events.

Update from the San Francisco Bay area self-inquiry group:
See the Shawn Nevins interview by Iain McNay of Conscious.tv, kicking off the publication of Shawn's book Subtraction: The Simple Math of Enlightenment. ~ Email for information about upcoming meetings and events.

   TAT Press publishes Shawn's Images of Essence: The Standing Now, which features his poems with photos by Bob Fergeson, The Celibate Seeker: An Exploration of Celibacy as a Modern Spiritual Practice, Subtraction: The Simple Math of Enlightenment, and Hydroglyphics: Reflections on the Sacred, which features his poems with photos by Phaedra Greenwood.

Update from the Washington DC Area Self-Inquiry Discussion Group:
[This group was previously listed as the Rockville, MD self-inquiry group.] We've been meeting monthly at Rockville, MD Memorial Library. While the library is closed for public health reasons, we're participating more in a weekly online book club. Forum readers are welcome to participate. ~ For more information, please email or see the website http://firstknowthyself.org/virtual/.

Members-Only Area

A password-protected section of the website is available for TAT members. The area contains information on product discounts for members as well as a substantial amount of helpful and historical information, including audio recordings, Newsletter archives, Retrospect archives, policies, conference proceedings, business meeting notes, photographs, and suggestions for ways to help.

TAT's August 2019 Workshop was titled Beyond Mindfulness: Meditation and the Path Within and included three guest speakers who each led separate workshops. The following audio recordings are now available in the members-only website area:

TAT's June 2019 Spiritual Retreat Weekend was titled Between You and the Infinite. The following audio recordings are now available in the members-only website area:

TAT's April 2019 Spiritual Retreat Weekend was titled Once in a Lifetime is Now. The following audio recordings are now available in the members-only website area:

TAT's August 2018 Workshop was titled Beyond Imagination and included three guest speakers who each led separate workshops. The following audio recordings are now available in the members-only website area:

Please us if you have questions. (Look here for info on TAT membership.)

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Your Contributions to TAT News

TAT founder Richard Rose believed that working with others accelerates our retreat from untruth. He also felt that such efforts were most effective when applied with discernment, meaning working with others on the rungs of the ladder closest to our own. The TAT News section is for TAT members to communicate about work they've been doing with or for other members and friends. Please your "ladder work" news.



"One thing you must be able to do in the midst
of any experience is laugh. And experience
should show you that it isn't real, that it's a
movie. Life doesn't take you seriously, so why
take it seriously." ~ Richard Rose, Carillon



~ Thanks to CoolFunnyQuotes.com.

Talking Dog for Sale

A guy is driving around Lebanon, Tennessee and he sees a sign in front of a house: "Talking Dog For Sale"

He rings the bell and the owner tells him the dog is in the backyard. The guy goes into the backyard and sees a Labrador retriever sitting there.

"You talk?" he asks. "Yep," the Lab replies.

"So, what's your story?" the man asked.

The Lab looks up and says, "Well, I discovered that I could talk when I was pretty young. I wanted to help the government, so I told the CIA about my gift, and in no time at all they had me jetting from country to country, sitting in rooms with spies and world leaders, because no one figured a dog would be eavesdropping. I was one of their most valuable spies for eight years running. But the jetting around really tired me out, and I knew I wasn't getting any younger so I decided to settle down. I signed up for a job at the airport to do some undercover security wandering near suspicious characters and listening in. I uncovered some incredible dealings and was awarded a batch of medals. I got married, had a mess of puppies, and now I'm just retired."

The guy is amazed. He goes back in and asks the owner what he wants for the dog.

"Ten dollars," the owner says. "Ten dollars? This dog is amazing. Why on earth are you selling him so cheap?"

"Because he's a liar. He never did any of that stuff."

~ Thanks to atimetolaugh.org.




~ Thanks to BH.

We enjoy presenting humor here from TAT members and friends. Please your written or graphic creations. Exact sources are necessary for other submissions, since we need to make sure they're either in the public domain or that we have permission to use them.


Inspiration & Irritation

Irritation moves us; inspiration provides a direction

Follow Your Bliss

Debi Padahara Pond

Joseph Campbell writes in The Power of Myth:

I came to this idea of bliss because in Sanskrit, which is the great spiritual language of the world, there are three terms that represent the brink, the jumping-off place to the ocean of transcendence: Sat, Chit, Ananda. The word “Sat” means being. “Chit” means consciousness. “Ananda” means bliss or rapture. I thought, “I don’t know whether my consciousness is proper consciousness or not; I don’t know whether what I know of my being is my proper being or not; but I do know where my rapture is. So let me hang on to rapture, and that will bring me both my consciousness and my being.” I think it worked….

The religious people tell us we really won’t experience bliss until we die and go to heaven. But I believe in having as much as you can of this experience while you are still alive….

If you do follow your bliss you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. When you can see that, you begin to meet people who are in the field of your bliss, and they open the doors to you. I say, follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.

Q: Is “follow your bliss” good advice for a seeker of Truth/Self-realization? (This will be the Reader Commentary question for the October TAT Forum.) Photo, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons, is of the Debi Padahara Pond in Bhubanewar, India. "Panoramic view of the icon of Kalinga Architecture, from the holy pond at daybreak, is nothing less than pure bliss."

Your Mind: Friend or Foe?

Often our minds are looked upon as a maladaptive entity which we must get rid of. This notion runs particularly rampant in some spiritual circles but just as equally rears its head in many different facets of society. At the heart of our minds is the notion that ego must be gotten rid of because the belief is it is the source of all our troubles. Ego seems to get a bad rap and sometimes it's well-deserved, but at other times the bad rap does not fit at all. As I hope to demonstrate, ego and in turn mind is neither good nor bad, but before I do that, let’s try and get an idea of what I mean by the term ego.

The way I define ego is as the identification with the self – it’s the formation and maintenance of an identity. Therefore, the question of whether your mind is a friend or foe in the search for self-definition should consider the role of ego – at least I think so.

An identity and therefore ego’s functions can be both unconscious and conscious and includes emotions and bodily sensations. Therefore, ego is not solely the domain of thoughts and beliefs. It would be prudent to note that definitions of ego can vary greatly in the literature – for example Jung used a different definition. I think it is useful to have a definition irrespective of what the definition is, as it can provide a grounding point when someone is attempting to work with ego and in turn mind. Let’s look at the distinction between unconscious and conscious identification by first looking at the latter.

What we are conscious of is more readily identified as belonging to ego. For instance, if I believe I am a good uncle to my nephews and nieces then a good argument can be made that’s the province of ego, since it’s an identification with the role of an uncle. In truth, each of us is consciously identified with ego in a myriad of ways through the day. I can identify as a therapist, a son, an uncle, a cook, a writer, a brother, a diabetic, a gamer just to name a few. Each of these is a role which is played, and if we easily float between roles without over attachment then these types of identifications are not problematic. It’s worth noting that when people are rigid in the roles they play or have too few, that’s when ego becomes problematic and in turn the mind becomes a foe....

~ See the rest of the essay by Eddie T.


Ceiling of the Historical Court Bower, Lübeck, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany

“Sometimes I wonder if there’s anyone up there. Then I decide if there’s no one up there, then I’m not here. Right?”

~ Nora MacDonaugh to Tim MacCarthy in Andrew Greeley’s Happy Are the Peace Makers. Photo from Wikimedia Commons of the ceiling of the Historical Court Bower, Lübeck, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany.

A Story and a Wish

Go logo

A while back I considered trying to index my stacks of notes, journals and pocket scraps from over the years that represent my spiritual path so that I could easily reference those good ideas that should be remembered. I came to realize that for so long, all that writing was really to capture thoughts, like a hobby, creating a massive "thought collection."

I took a yellow marker to highlight material of a more critical nature, to include those insights and glimpses that might represent the more subtractive nature of my work, the deconstructive analysis involving the "real" work of self-inquiry. Instead, what I again had to face was a shallowness demonstrated through the mere recording of thoughts, not so much observations and insights from inquiry, but rather a concerted effort in composing a story about me. In turn this led to recognizing that almost all of my daily thinking, writing and speaking all continually weaves a story about me, not seeking the reality about me. It's so easy to make up a story or opinion in the moment, convenient and the means to confirming me as authority, as one who knows all about me. Writing all these years seemed more to create and confirm this authority identity, rather than to record the observations in investigating the mechanisms of the "I am-ness," he who writes and thinks he is in charge.

This investigation is the actual seeking and not the understanding of one's self, and can only parallel a refined desire for what could be more real, perhaps some final answer. Instead of creating a story about what I am or about what is reality, it seems intuitive to me to commit to the discovery of what I am not. And then there's a point where one's path is no longer the collecting of notes and ideas to create a better a story, when the focus turns toward what one sees and hears (with interior eyes and ears), and includes feelings and visceral cues, more subtle hints and hunches. Note-taking continues but becomes a challenge in recording what is seen, itself an exercise in refinement, first of recording experience and then writing to welcome less cloudy seeing and further discernment of the more subtle. My wish is that every seeker gets beyond what he or she conceptually understands and records and actually seeks the reality of his or her self as a continually refined process in discernment. I believe this type of seeking to be a milestone, perhaps the commitment to find a final Truth, and hallmark of the path of "going within."

~ Thanks to Don A., who noted: In Be As You Are: The Teachings of Ramana Maharshi dialogues edited by David Godman, there is only one sentence highlighted in bold in the entire book: "I want you to dive consciously into the Self, that is the Heart."

Please your thoughts on the above items.


Reader Commentary

Encouraging interactive readership among TAT members and friends

A reader wrote that what would make the Forum more interesting would be:

Hearing from people who are searching – and have questions instead of those providing endless advice and "answers." What challenges they are facing. What their doubts and questions are. How they perceive their path is going. What they are doing in their lives. Where they think they will end up. Etc. etc.

Can you help make the Forum more interesting?

The Reader Commentary question for September refers to the article on The Mind: Friend or Foe? in last month's Convictions & Concerns section and is:

What are your thoughts / feeling on this: Is your mind a friend or a foe in your search for self-definition?

Responses follow:

From Kevin S:
I would say the mind is a necessary, if problematic, partner in the process. First of all—it’s not going anywhere. Although there are those who claim they can stop thinking whenever they want (Bob Harwood makes that claim), I would say that is the rare exception. The vast majority of humankind is locked in a perpetual dance with the mind whether we are doing this work of waking up or not. I think it’s more of a question of what is the nature of our relationship with the mind, or thoughts. Ultimately that relationship will evolve.

One way of looking at it is like a twist on that Zen saying, “First there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is.” The first mountain is where we identify completely with the mind—we think that is who or what we are. As we begin to observe it, at some point we recognize that it is a process that is arising, (again borrowing from the Zen lexicon) “as itself so,” and infinitely interconnected to everything else. There is no mountain. There is no other. I speculate at this point—not having experienced more than glimpses of non-dual consciousness. So, the mind is still functioning, but as part of a larger, smoothly interwoven reality. And finally, when the mind comes consciously back on line, and once again there is a mountain, it is seen for what it is.

Our relationship with the mind as it goes through this process may vary depending on our temperament and the methods we are thereby drawn to. Though often it may seem that we are fighting with the mind—in the end—we have no choice but to work with it in some capacity. So, friend or foe? Push or pull? Two sides of the same coin.

From Norio Kushi:
The narrative “The Mind: Friend or Foe” is an interesting story and like most stories is pure imagination ;-). Nothing wrong with stories and imagination. Let’s curl up with a good novel or movie—they have their place and value.

The question assumes there is such a thing as a mind, an imaginary container owned by an imaginary self. Something that doesn’t exist can have no agency and therefore has no capacity to be friend or foe.

This is the magic of languaging—creating and playing in a world of contrasts where ideas like friend and foe exist. The mischief we as humans fall into is when there’s a lack of discernment between the linguistically-created imaginary world and the actual.

From Sunil Vidyarthi:
Asking mind to consider whether it is a friend or foe immediately creates duality. So one of the two goes looking for ways the other can prevent you from seeing the truth. An honest search reveals that pretty much everything including some of your spiritual work is in the way. Something in what appears to be a seamless mind knows it is itself an entirely made up concept to describe the happenings in the brain.

Neuroscientists have simulated many experiences you take to be real.

But who sees that? You do. But it, seemingly another, loves its vrittis (Patanjali’s word for mental habits) and has a grand story called the ego that will not let you forget that the illusion is real.

From Patrick K:
This is a very important topic. In my experience I have to create a conducive lifestyle. I dropped watching TV recently and this has been beneficial. So distractions like TV or all the other forms of entertainment media are like food for the mind. The mind carries forward what it liked in the past; it will carry forward a desire for that in the future, appetites/craving. How does one go about developing an innocent, peaceful, more natural mind? Just stop feeding it junk. Follow the longing to “obey the lord in thought, word and deed”. I fall short all the time but I hope it's getting better. I can only try to get on track with that.

Keep feeding it esoteric material; throwing spanners into the mind cogs to disrupt the usual patterns. The more peaceful, natural and innocent the mind is, the more it can be an ally in this work. And will even provide the answers to show you how to get beyond it! When you look at the machinery that is going on, it is quite incredible; the more I consider it, it is absolutely mind boggling. To “really” appreciate this, sitting in quiet meditation is much more enthralling than any worldly contrived entertainment (although I do have a weakness for music). But just to get into a position where you can actually pull some levers to support your own truth unfolding. Again one of the greatest pieces of advice I ever got was from Roses' books, “Back away from the foolish, back away from untruth”.

A possible exercise: Contrast your mind with the mind of someone who you intuit is an enlightened being. Try and intuit the gap between that person and that quality of your own mentality. Long and pray to close that gap.

Moods and states of mind must be watched continuously. Look to pull the rug from under these because they are pulling the rug from under us, hindering how we see clearly. Watch how the thoughts are shaped by the current mood. Stay with the “I am that I am” as distinct from “I am as I am” to see the type of spell of the mood you are under.

From From Richard G, former Pittsburgh SIG member:
The question: “Is your mind a friend or foe in search for self-definition?

Neither, but I like the question! The dichotomous question itself reflects the divisiveness of our thinking. People, through their thinking, tend to divide reality into categories, i.e., subject/object. In other words, there is a separation or division of “I” and an object, i.e., one in relation to another. For example, I (subject) read a question (object).

One thing in relation to another: is this the only reality or perspective? Is there another perspective that transcends the subject/object perspective? If so, can we lose, remove, or transcend the boundary between the self and Self or where there seem to be two awarenesses? Why do our minds strongly resist the recognition or remembrance of who we are?

While I was reading Beyond Relativity: Transcending the Split Between Knower & Known by Art Ticknor) I found some quotes that are apropos, provide clarity, and answer the questions.

“The mind doesn’t need to be broken. We just have to lose, momentarily, once, Our identification with the mind.” (p. 243)

“What you really are knows itself. The problem is only at the mind level. So enlightenment is really the mind’s becoming consciously aware of what you are.” (p. 161)

“Enlightenment is the mind’s becoming consciously aware of its source … of what You are.” (p. 163)

“That’s good … also the clue as to where to find the umbilical cord that takes you home. From the mind’s view there are two awarenesses … the one we’re looking out from and the one that’s conscious of the outward-looking one. Intuitively, though, you don’t feel like two “things” or two different awarenesses, do you? But the mind sees two awarenesses within (plus the billions of other awarenessses outside).” (p. 92)

In conclusion from Beyond Relativity:

"The clue is that we know that we’re conscious or aware. The mind somehow perceives awareness. It gets momentary glimpses of awareness by some ability to look back at itself.” (p. 118)

"The solution only comes when you get beyond the mind.” (p. 107)

"You already ARE beyond experience. The mind can’t help but reflect the truth of BEING. When the “mirror” by which you know that your conscious lines up to reflect the light coming from the SELF, it breaks your hypnotic attraction to the mind’s movement ... and you recognize yourself.” (p. 281)

The “how to” would be using self-inquiry, self-enquiry, and/or koans. These practices take the practitioner to the vey limits of what their minds can know and experience. However, “You’ll know nothing for sure until you know the knower.” (p. 51) [Text bolding by Richard - Ed.]

From BH:
The mind has been my main paradigm for understanding the world. It’s a foe in the sense that part of its design is to make me believe “I” can live forever as well as to reinforce the sense of individuality. I’m not mad at the mind about that because it just seems to be evolutionarily / biologically programmed to do that. The mind is just doing its job! I see my job as seeing that fact and taking the power away from the programming. I am not clear on the mechanism that makes me attached to my thoughts, but if that’s the mind, I’d say that’s a foe too.

On the other hand, the mind was a friend because it “failed” me—in the sense that its analyses & understanding of my life were making me deeply unhappy. The fact that my mind was making me feel bad then led me (the mind?) to seek out fixes. The “fix this problem” mission—after the other attempts ran their course—eventually put me in front of the ideas of “spirituality” or “Enlightenment” AND allowed me to be open to teachers like Richard Rose and Nisargadatta and Art Ticknor in the first place. I don’t think I would have found them or been open to the idea that I am not my mind at all without first believing and wanting to change the mind’s self-referential stories.

The mind is a friend also in that another of its jobs is to be a problem-solving tool. If I am careful, I believe it can be of some help in the process of figuring out the questions I want to answer. One example is the mind helped me do some critical experiments on whether I am the thinker/doer/decider (and based on the evidence it was provided to analyze, it concluded pretty definitively that I’m not!). That helped open me to the idea that “I” am not in control at all. I’m working with that idea as one of the best ones I’ve got at the moment and it appears to have been very fruitful for me because the mind processing has opened me up a lot and led to further insight and inspiration (and more useful analysis). Using that mind-based conclusion as my yardstick has been helpful in seeing through stories I previously believed, so I can at least thank my “friend,” the mind, for that :)

From Art Ticknor:
What do we mean when we use the term "the mind"?

I think of "my mind" as where I witness streams of images such as the moving picture of trees, shrubs, birds, etc., outside my window as I sit here at the computer, worded thoughts about those images, memories related to them, and feelings about them ... and where I also witness pieces of mental processes such as decision-making, analytical reasoning, and intuitive functioning.

I think of "the mind" as this dimension of relative existence encompassing "my mind" and the apparent minds of "other things" and our connectivity. Using the Egyptian Aten symbol with the sun as the source of all and rays ending in individual hands, each hand would represent an individual mind while the totality of rays and hands would represent what I think of as "the mind."

Friend or foe ... that brings into question "of whom or what?" The problem being that to answer the first question, we need to first answer the second one: Who or what are we? Until that's accomplished, we need to focus on that. But how?

We operate in a paradigm—or series of paradigms—of beliefs about what we are, some of which we're not consciously aware of. Life challenges these beliefs, loosening our illusory certainties. If we're not satisfied with the pace of disillusionment, we can try sticking our oars in the water to pick up the pace.

Based on my life-experience, when we're at a point of surrender, the mind opens to the extent that illusory beliefs about what we are have lost their hold on our view.

From Brian M:
After reading what Colm wrote in his article I realised I had a similar experience in the last few weeks. I was looking for a car registration certificate in a folder that I was certain it would be there. After searching through the folder thoroughly many times I believed that I must have mistakenly thrown it out in the trash as I could not think of anywhere it could be, though there was doubt about this that I would carelessly throw out this important document.

I re-checked the folder a few days later. Still no sign of it. I searched online on how I can get a replacement. Accepting it was lost forever I printed out the form, filled it in, visited the Garda station to get it signed and stamped, visited the post office to post this form off for a replacement.

Two or three days later, I think in the morning while in bed, a thought came to check a blue folder in the attic. Later that day I found the blue folder and there was the car registration certificate.

Honestly this was a nice surprise as I was resigned to paying up for a new car registration certificate. I felt really pleased my mind had come up with this data.

I remember attending an talk where the teacher said thoughts are disgusting. For a while I began to see a lot of my thoughts as disgusting and out of place. There may be a point to that when thoughts go astray and seem a bit odd or egoic though I have to re-consider, as Colm did, that the mind can be of help, too. There is balance there.

From Anima Pundeer:
The unexamined mind is man’s biggest enemy, whether it is for self-definition or living a regular life. Driven by the underlying desires and fears, the mind becomes the master of man’s actions. One has to start by asking if you have this mind or mind has you? Am I my mind?

I have found that ALL my problems arise in my mind and ALL the solutions also are found in the same place. The only way to make the mind our friend is by understanding its nature. How it works. It is studying the mind with the mind. The very basic facts I discovered about my mind were that...

Mind is a powerful tool. When used with intention it can resolve all problems. It is your biggest and most important friend in your path of Self-Realization. And yet, in the end, the mind is the bridge that needs to be crossed.

From Eddie T:
Often our minds are looked upon as a maladaptive entity which we must get rid of. This notion runs particularly rampant in some spiritual circles but just as equally rears its head in many different facets of society. At the heart of our minds is the notion that ego must be gotten rid of because the belief is it is the source of all our troubles. Ego seems to get a bad rap and sometimes its well-deserved, but at other times the bad rap does not fit at all. As I hope to demonstrate ego and in turn mind is neither good nor bad, but before I do that, let’s try and get an idea of what I mean by the term ego....

See Eddie's complete response in this month's Inspiration & Irritation section.

From Gus R:
A better question might be: Without an ego, where does your mind want to go?

Within a lot of spiritual communities these days, you'd come up against a brick wall if you stated that your mind could pursue a spiritual path. Maybe it is because few differentiate between mind and ego. My cat has a mind as do possibly most if not all living things, but I have an extra mental layer, like a sugary seductive icing on an otherwise very bland cake. It is this icing that makes humans alive with something special, a color and dimension found nowhere else in nature, and maybe a form of entertainment that the projecting Absolute could never have experienced on it's own.

I use a short awkward word, calling it ego. It's purpose seems, innocently enough, to seek confirmation of its own existence. In the grand scheme of evolution, the ego seems to be the greatest of survivors, a true warrior even at the cost of its body, its environment and its own mind, so anxious even greedy (which only ego could be) to confirm its "self." But mind is always present, and may not always be a handmaiden serving ego, for example while preoccupied with problem solving, while dreaming, receiving hunches and insights, intuition, moods and feelings—drawing upon far greater assets than what ego pretends to possess.

As a result, many esoteric teachings suggest we pursue the heart, located a foot-and-a-half away, a safe distance from the seat of ego to pursue these other more "spiritual" influences. And how we pursue the heart may be the key to mind redirecting it's own functioning, realizing a capacity to become more than it is, to become Other. No small feat, first to unalign mind from ego, then to transcend itself.

The highest, genuine spiritual teachings I have found seek to establish a sound mind, body and ego as the vehicles for travel in the mundane dimensions for the mundane part of the seeker. Both in the highest teachings and increasingly through one's own experience, it is found that our mind is in an exceedingly difficult position to do anything on its own initiative, primarily due to being overwhelmed by distractions and by forgetfulness from accomplishing anything.

I have found that the hallmark of a genuine spiritual teaching agrees that nothing can be done by the individual mind, unless the mind becomes less individualized. In this superior form of evolution, the mind can exceed itself, but only by directing the only asset it may have, it's attention, through being directed by an intention to something far more meaningful and subtle than the ego with which it is otherwise attached. This can only take place by the mind's response through its own more subtle vehicle, the law of commitment, even as it comes under other less obvious laws.

And here is where the paradox comes in. As one progresses, what some teachings call spiritual maturity, there results an improved discernment and an ability to simultaneously strive while being able to surrender. Some call this latter Between-ness, some call it Grace, but the common factor is non-self-ness which can be characterized by a self-less vector, whose intensity is contributed by intention, pointed away from self, and a direction assigned by some longing, if only there is a complete surrendering to that longing. This vector is both the intention of a seeker and an innocence of a child. If indeed a response to a calling from without, some authors term this as love.

From Dan G:
This reminds me of G. I. Gurdjieff’s man #4, who isn’t seeking with instinct, emotion, or intellect alone, but all aspects of the mind. The remembering mechanism is one I could use to remember who I am. Each of these seekers [i.e., man #1, #2, and #3 in Gurdjieff's model; we all start at the #1 level and then decreasing numbers of us progress to higher levels - Ed.] has a blind spot, trusting their tool too much, and maybe there is a border of the mind around headlessness or the black wall or the doubt sensation that is a step forward from here.

From Paul C:
Before diving into the question, it seems like a good idea to first define for ourselves what is meant by "mind." We can start with the dictionary, which defines it as: (1) the element, part, substance, or process that reasons, thinks, feels, wills, perceives, or judges or (2) the totality of conscious and unconscious mental processes and activities. But what is your own definition and experience of mind? Is it a concrete aspect of your being, or is it a collection of your ever-changing attributes? Where are the boundaries in you between body, mind, and spirit? It is tremendously beneficial to study ourselves and develop our own definition before deciding if the mind is a friend or foe in our search.

We have all experienced the benefits of applying our energy and focusing our mind on a difficult problem or endeavor. In many cases, a focused mind is a great tool for unleashing creativity and accomplishment. It is also a magnificent doubt machine, which is handy when evaluating spiritual teachers and spiritual systems. And a healthy balance of productive thinking and feeling-sense—which are key features of the mind—are far more powerful when combined, in contrast to using either of these alone.

Unfortunately, the mind also has an amazing capacity for self-delusion. We can construct elaborate rationalizations and beliefs for justifying our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. Sadly, we will easily outwit ourselves if we don't remain on our toes by continuously using discernment and relentlessly watching our mind. Tragically, the mind can become our worst foe if we allow our addictions to descend into self-destruction, or the destruction of our relationships.

In conclusion, much wisdom comes from looking within ourselves in an attempt to uncover our inner obstacles and advantageous tools. We have to discover for ourselves how the mind can be both friend and foe. In fact, isn't this the very process of self-definition?

From Shawn Nevins:
Ironically, I just emailed someone [Alfred] Pulyan's comment that:

The body dies and is dissipated. The mind is one with it at all times and is therefore also dissipated. Nothing of you remains. There is no survival or reincarnation or ‘immortal soul,’ [or] ‘conscious entity.'

Which reminds me of these lines from Caddyshack:

So I jump ship in Hong Kong and make my way over to Tibet, and I get on as a looper at a course over in the Himalayas. A looper, you know, a caddy, a looper, a jock. So, I tell them I’m a pro jock, and who do you think they give me? The Dalai Lama himself. Twelfth son of the Lama. The flowing robes, the grace, bald… striking.

So, I’m on the first tee with him. I give him the driver. He hauls off and whacks one—big hitter, the Lama—long, into a ten-thousand foot crevasse, right at the base of this glacier. Do you know what the Lama says? Gunga galunga… gunga, gunga-galunga.

So we finish eighteen and he’s gonna stiff me. And I say, “Hey, Lama, hey, how about a little something, you know, for the effort, you know.” And he says, “Oh, uh, there won’t be any money, but when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness.”

So I got that goin’ for me, which is nice.

Yeah, so we've got that going for us. Despite which story we choose regarding the mind, friend or foe, the story happened, is happening, and will end. We can create another story about that ending, calling it "total consciousness" or "nothing of you remains." Which further reminds me, we just talked about the "Chasms of the Mind" in the August issue of the Forum—what a tangled web we weave.

Mind: friend or foe? "I am an army standing against myself, and for the dust of my flourishes, I cannot see my Lord." (From The Books of the Relative by Richard Rose.)

We're a dream. And the mind knows it....


Editor's comment: TAT Foundation Press publishes Shawn's Hydroglyphics: Reflections on the Sacred with photos by Phaedra Greenwood, Subtraction: The Simple Math of Enlightenment, and The Celibate Seeker. He also authors the SpiritualTeachers.org website featuring recommendations of teachers, movies and books along with The Journals of Spiritual Discovery podcasts.

Next Month

The Reader Commentary question for the October TAT Forum refers to the Joseph Campbell excerpt on Follow Your Bliss in this month's Inspiration & Irritation section and is:

Is “follow your bliss” good advice for a seeker of Truth/Self-realization?

Please your responses by the 25th of September and indicate your preferred identification (the default is your first name and the initial letter of your last name).

PS: What question(s) would you like to ask other TAT Forum readers?

Q: What are your thoughts on this month's reader commentary? Please your feedback.

Richard Rose described a spiritual path as living one's life aimed at finding the meaning of that life. Did you find anything relevant to your life or search in this month's TAT Forum?

Utah Canyon

Bob Fergeson walking into a narrow crevice in a Utah canyon near Goblin State Park. Photo by Tim H.

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Founder's Wisdom

Richard Rose (1917-2005) established the TAT Foundation
in 1973 to encourage people to work together on what
he considered to be the "grand project" of spiritual work.

Core Albigen System Principles
(in no particular order)

Part 1 of 3:

1. Law of the Reverse Vector. Retreating from error, backing away from untruth, an erosion of ignorance, a system of becoming.

“The Law of the Reversed Vector states that you cannot approach the Truth. You must become (a vector), but you cannot learn the absolute Truth. We must back into the Truth by backing away from untruth.” ~ Richard Rose, The Albigen Papers

“You are basically a vector. You are what you do. Every man is what he does.” ~ Richard Rose, from a 1977 lecture in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

“This whole process is a retreat from error, not a planting of a postulation and then massing all of our forces to prove that postulation. It is taking zero, and building from zero. When we ask ourselves, ‘Who am I?’ we are taking an initial step. We do not begin by saying I am this or that.” ~ Richard Rose, Psychology of the Observer

“…if you train yourself to avoid the untrue, to reject and reject and reject as you find stuff absurd, you can only go in the opposite direction. Your intuition [is] going to be skilled or directed or trained to move into a computation that is valid as opposed to something that you’d just like to believe because you’re tired.” ~ Richard Rose, from a 1977 lecture titled Zen and Common Sense at Kent State University

“We find that there is only one way, and that is to first build of ourselves a very determined person—a vector. We cut off tangential dissipaters of energy and ball up this energy for the work ahead.” ~ Richard Rose, The Albigen Papers

See the complete part 1 (5 principles)

Definition of Terms

cherries separator

Index of many of the key terms and principles in Rose's work, with brief definitions, from Richard Rose's Psychology of the Observer: The Path to Reality Through the Self by John Kent.

Jacob's Ladder (Richard Rose diagram)

Jacob's Ladder © 2001 Richard Rose. See this transcript of a talk on the topic by Rose.

Homing Ground Update

… A spot on earth where people can do retreats and hold
meetings; where the emphasis is on friendship and the search.

Hurdle Mills new home for TAT

September 2021:

  • "Foiled again!" one might say, but despite changing our planned August meeting at the Center to a September virtual event, there was good news from the TAT Center. A small informal gathering occurred on August 14 with around 14 people in attendance. Additionally, the week prior to that there were several people who attended a week-long residential retreat. So there's good things happening at the Center despite delays in holding our formal meetings there.
  • If you're so inspired, send a little cash to support the Center using the donate button below and help keep it all happening. We're at 3% of our goal for the year, so we've got quite a gap to bridge. However, that total doesn't count several individuals who've generously donated towards specific items at the Center such as a riding mower and a PA system for the meeting room.

expanded meeting room exterior finished


Let's bring this to life! "The job is upon us," Richard Rose said, "and it is worthwhile." To contribute to the TAT Center, mail a check made out to the TAT Foundation to:

TAT Foundation
PO Box 3402
Roxboro, NC 27573

Big checks, little checks, all are welcome. Or use the PayPal link above (though we lose 2.2% of your donation to PayPal fees).

* See photos and more on the Homing Ground page. *

In friendship,
Shawn Nevins
on behalf of the TAT Trustees

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