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How To Make Friends With God



The main problem that most people have with self-discovery is that they think of themselves much too much, and they forget about God.  

God has always existed and will always exist.  God is existence.  And it's amazing to me how many people who profess to be spiritual seekers are self-seekers, and how few of them ever consider God.  

God is the forgotten subject.  I realize that there are many books that have been written about God, people give talks about God, people profess to show the way to God, but in my estimation, these people are usually talking about themselves or their own ideas, and not really about God.  I think God is the least discussed subject.  Less is known about God than anything else.  People know about the world, they know about careers, they know about time, space.  They know how to succeed, how to attract other people, how to raise children, build tall buildings, have advanced telecommunication networks, build bombs, pave roads, construct complex societies, write books, but they don't know anything about God.  It's amazing.

How do you get to know God?  Well, there has to be some sense of humility to start with, and need.  Only a humble person can come to know God because the humble person can recognize that there is something more powerful, more complete and more perfect than they are.  Without this recognition, it's impossible to get to know God.  The humble person can also accept that life is a wonderful mystery.  Life is a very mysterious thing and God is the mystery of life.  
The way to God is meditation.  That's how you get to know God.  When you meditate, you experience God.  That's meditation.

The vain, self-seeking people will seek to explain God away by defining God.  You'll go to their catechisms, their churches, their monasteries, and they will explain the mystery of God away.  And the more they talk about God, the less you'll know about God.  I can't tell you anything about God at all.  I can suggest how you might find God, then you'll have to deal with God yourself.  I can't tell you anything about God, though.  

God is limitless awareness.  There.  Now I just told you every-thing I know about God.  A lot of good it did you.  You probably knew that already.  But do you really know what limitless awareness is?  Oh, sure, you can hear me say, "God is limitless awareness." But immediately when you think of God, you have a preconceived cultural notion of who and what God is.  

Since the time you were born, you were taught about God.  If you were taught to believe in God, you were taught what to believe, that God is a certain way and not another way.  If you were taught that God doesn't exist, then you were taught about God.  Our society dwells on God.  God is mentioned on our currency, on the money that we carry in our wallets.  God is everywhere, but no one knows about God.

There are a few people who do know about God.  They tend to be, usually, kind of quiet about the subject.  Now, I can't claim to know a lot about God, but I never talk about God.  As a matter of fact, to my remembrance, this is the first talk I've ever given about God, out of giving talks for 14 years.  I don't think I've ever talked about God.  I think the reason that I've never talked about God is that no one ever wanted to hear about God.  I knew as soon as I said the word "God," if someone was a sophisticated spiritual seeker who moved beyond conventional religion, they'd be turned off.  Because they're too important.  They don't have time for that which they are.  

It's the funniest thing.  People fly hither and yon in the world, doing all kinds of important things, trying to attain enlightenment so they can be happy, trying to build careers, families, futures, nations, philosophies, so they can do what they think is right.  But they never find God.  Because they were never really interested.  In my estimation, most religious people never find God.  They find religion, not God.

No, I never talk about God because I think that God is not very important.  As a matter of fact, God is the least important thing I know of - to most people.  Last on their list of things to do - get to know God.

The way to God is meditation.  That's how you get to know God.  When you meditate, you experience God.  That's meditation.

The download of this talk is provided by a link to the
Frederick P. Lenz Foundation for American Buddhism
Zazen Poster - Rama Frederick Lenz
Magic is the ability to perceive beyond the surface.
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