The Bible "seed" story (Tape 34)
Exercise in how we value the Teaching and Use it
Continuing our study of the teachings that are related in the many parables and teaching stories, we will start reading today from:
Mark, Chapter 4, Verse 2:
"And he taught them many things in parables, and he said to them in his instruction (his teaching), 'Hear! Behold, the sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside, and the birds came and ate it up. And other seeds fell upon rocky ground, where it has not much earth; and it sprang up at once because it had no depth of earth; but when the sun rose it was scorched, and because it had no root, it withered away. And other seeds fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. And other seed fell upon good ground, and yielded fruit that grew up, made increase and produced, one thirty, another sixty, and another a hundred fold.' Then he said, 'He who has ears to hear, let him hear.'"
Now we will look at just a few words in here. Now one has "no earth", it says has no earth or not much earth; earth has no means of the personality, which is in the practical uses of everyday being - the ability to observe, the ability to somewhat value things. So they had "no earth." So much of this is about is how much one values the teaching; how much one works on it. Obviously, the person who went out to sow was sowing the instructions, the TEACHINGS, as he was doing at the moment, and that many times it has no value on it - one has not had enough experience in the world to see value in something unless it can be eaten, worn, or used in some means or other to produce senses [sensations]. But one who has developed a certain amount of workable personality (the older brother in the parable of the prodigal son) does see some practical use in it, and begins to see a value in it. If it has none of this, very quickly it is only seen as something interesting and it has "no earth,"--no use in this world, and so it very quickly is gone. It is much like not having clothes or shoes.
"And when he was alone, those who were with him and the Twelve asked him about the parables,"
The twelve students and some other people who were allowed in some level of the teaching. And he said to them,
"To you it is given to know the mystery of the Kingdom of God"
In other words, to know the meaning of the parables; to know what these parallels or these symbols are about;
"but to those outside, all things are treated in parables."
We will only tell them a little; and if they are really interested and have some ability, that something within has questioned the purpose of living, they will see some value and continue. And he quoted Isaiah about them that they could hear and not understand or have eyes to see [".. that seeing they may see, but not perceive; and hearing they may hear, but not understand]
"And he said to them, 'Do you not know this parable? How then will you understand all the parables?"
The reason being that this is considered to be the very central teaching story - the central parable of all other parables. It has all the aspects of the others, so here is one, that when one understands, the others begin to fall into place because one can begin to see what they mean.
"The sower sows the word"
and the word, of course, is the TEACHING or the instruction that He was giving to people.
"And those by the wayside are they in whom the word is sown, and as soon as they have heard it, Satan (or mammon) comes and takes away the word that has been sown in their hearts".
In other words, the whole bit of: "Did it make pleasure?" "Did it leave you any comfort?" "Did it get you attention?" Of course, it's all gone--so mammon won that round in that number of people.
"And those likewise that were sown on the rocky ground are those who, when hearing the word, receive it immediately with joy."
They have very little within themselves and this sounds like, "here is some way that "I" will really make out." It is considered in the teaching that unless one has managed to exist and have more than one way to make a living in the man-made world, that one is capable of performing without being identified with it, that one can do very little with the teaching. They are considered to be these people who are "shallow earth." They have nothing in them that has been able to get along even in the man-made world--with seeing some of its jokes--and they barely manage to earn a living--to provide for themselves and their families. These people--these "shallow ones"--hear this and say, "Oh, that's great." "Now I can involve myself in that - I can be a philosopher. I won't have to work, and then I'll be a success." "I couldn't make it in the business world." "I couldn't make it in farming." "I couldn't make it in working." "I couldn't make it running a business, but now here's something I can really do. I can talk."
So we'll find out what happens to them:
"...when they have heard the word, receive it immediately with joy; and they have no root in themselves, but continue only for a time; then, when trouble and persecution comes because of the word, they at once fall away."
In other words, they wanted it to bring them pleasure and comfort, and they wanted it to provide them a way to live. They didn't expect that when one started using these TEACHINGS, that one would find drastic adversaries in the man-made world - all kinds of institutions that wouldn't like people to have this and be free - so they began to be persecuted; and of course, they leave right quick because what they are looking for is an easy way to get along in the world--not a means of having something that is of great value, but only of value to them and not something they value so much that they serve it, or work with it, and provide for it. They expected it to provide for them. Of course, these are the ones who have no root in themselves. They have nothing that can be of value. They see no value except what it will do for them.
"And those who are sown among the thorns are those who listen to the word; but the cares of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires about other things, entered in, choke the word, and it is made fruitless."
They attempt to serve both God and mammon--feeling that they could do this work; but at the same time gain pleasure and comfort on all levels and gain riches. It is very easy for mammon to say, "Well, you could do a lot more work if you had a lot of money."
Now, obviously, you know if you had two million dollars, you could set up a beautiful school and you could provide for all the students; and you could transmit the word, and it would be so much better. So let's make a couple, or three, or four, or five million dollars. When two are made, of course, four more are needed because then mammon says, "Well, by now inflation has come along and you will need something like six million to put on this grand and glorious school that you're talking about. We think it's really wonderful, but it would be so much better if we had a few million more." So then the effort is spent among the weeds and the thorns, which says, of course, this a representation of mammon to gain pleasure and comfort, attention and approval, to be important, really takes care of everything. And of course, it chokes out the word. The person was really interested in the word, was greatly enthused about it; but he was also enticed by mammon--that if one just had enough money, one could do so much good. If one just had so much power over other people; then of course, one could force a lot more people to really straighten up and know themselves; and this would be much more worthwhile. Above all, we could provide for so many people. Maybe we could build a really worthwhile school that would be permanent--that it wouldn't fade away every so often when somebody disappears. Let's make a permanent one. Maybe we should train a lot of teachers. Maybe we can get enough money and then, of course, we could train teachers because that's all they would have to do - and mammon sounds so convincing.
Mammon is the greatest salesman in the world. You know, all salesmen first make you believe you have a need, and then that he has a solution to the need. Of course, the need is always something to his advantage for you to have. Mammon is the very greatest of all salesmen!
"And those who are sown upon good ground are they who hear the word, and welcome it, and yield fruit, one thirty, another sixty, and another a hundred fold."
When we welcome something, we value it. When the work is valued--not for what it will do for me--but that I see its value, regardless of what it will do for me. I try to do something with the work. I see it as of value. I see its greatness. I see while it sounds very simple with a simple number of precepts and ideas, that of studying self, being self-aware, observing all the attributes of the self, observing the accounts receivable being built, observing the conflict going on, observing the judging, the condemning, or justifying according to some ideal, and the constant setting up of ideals, it is rather simple.
But one finds as one applies it, that it is very profound; and that it is not simple to apply, and that if one values it, one must, as in an old saying, "gird up one's loins." One must do battle. One must be ready to do all the Work that is necessary. One finds that it is Work and that the Work doesn't come to an end in a day or two - that what one is working on is the self--not to be identified with it--but as a self, and that it has many powerful forces, great adversaries to I being fully awake; that it works constantly to hypnotize I and that the hypnotic effect is very powerful.
Did you ever see a hypnotic state in the wild? It is very, very interesting to observe. Watch sometime and you will probably get to see it. You will see how powerful it is; and as you see the creature that's being hypnotized--more than likely by a snake--they're the only ones I've ever seen hypnotize another. You will see that the bird, or the rat, or whatever creature is being hypnotized, is very representative of "I" and that the snake represents mammon. It continually--and with great patience--fascinates until it draws its victim (in this case "I") into its very mouth and swallows it!
"And he said to them, 'Is a lamp bought to be put under the measure, or under the couch?"
In other words, the teaching is a lamp. If somebody buys something, they value it. They don't bring it home and put it in a closet, or in the basement, or they don't hide it under the couch.
"..Is it not rather to be put upon the lamp stand?"
In other words, its put in the foremost place inside the self, the awareness, where it will continue to cast light. The teaching is used by the awareness as its greatest value because it is the tools by which it can be what it is designed to be - a servant of X.
"For there is nothing hidden that will not be made manifest;"
If one uses the teaching, there is nothing hidden. It may take a long time; but it will be manifest. It will be brought to awareness and one can see clearly.
"..nor is anything concealed that will not come to light."
The light of the teaching throws a light on every hidden aspect within the self--every hypnotic state and every tiny bit of conditioning is brought to the light if one values. If one values, one uses the teaching. One uses self-awareness, observing the self without condemning or justifying. One has many tools by which one may do the observing. One has a road map that points out what one can observe. So the teaching is a light that brings everything that is hidden to the light. Everything that's concealed is brought into the open.
"If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear."
Let him hear what the teaching is about, what his whole purpose is, and then one would see the value of it.
"And he said to them, 'Take heed what you hear."
Pay attention to whether you are hearing this as some words, or as having some little practical value, or as some way you should behave, or is it referring to one's very deepest inner state?
"With what measure you measure, it shall be measured to you, and more shall be given to you."
What is measured means is how it is valued. How does it stack up on the scale of values? If it is valued at the very highest level, then one has measured it as being very great. If one measures it as--well, it is something I will do a few minutes a day, or as something like, "Well let's see, I'm too busy today." "We'll have to go out and see so and so at the park, so we will do that tomorrow.", then one has measured the work or valued it as being of very little value to one's existence. It is something interesting, something to wile away some time when there isn't something more interesting to do, like going to visit Mrs. Jones at the park, or taking the children to the zoo, or whatever it may be.
But if one values it, one finds time to put it first and foremost; and it's working every minute of the day. It is the first thing in all other things. One sees everything else as a school of opportunity to allow one to use the ideas in the work. When one sees this, one has measured it, and has measured or valued it as of very, very great value - first and foremost, like the lamp - it is put on the lamp stand in the most prominent place so that it will cast light in all directions. When one is seeing the Work in this as of value; and in this value something rather wonderful happens. Let's see what he says might happen in the instruction.
"For to him who has shall be given; and from him who does not have, even that which he has shall be taken away."
For him who sees the value of the Work, who has the ability to question the purpose of living and to begin to see that the value is not in mammon--but in what the Work teaches is of value, what the instruction that the Christ was giving--that it is used everyday--every moment--then it says if one has this, more will be given. But you see if you don't use that which is that is available--if you don't value it, no matter how many books, how many talks, how many articles were handed you, how many people come by to visit you, they couldn't give you one bit more because you haven't put the value on it. There is something more important to do - there is a party to go to; and I would like to talk to you, sir, tomorrow; and could you see me-"Oh, I don't know, maybe about 11 o'clock tomorrow night--maybe we could get some time worked in."
So many great beings with great information have visited many; but they [the potential students] were busy with some insignificant little idea, or opinion, or their pet theories; and they really did not have time to find out what the teaching was. So it is not because more is not available to everyone; but it is all in accord to what one values--where one places the teaching on the scale of value--to where they put the measuring rod. Does it measure at the top, the middle, way down towards the bottom; or does it have scarcely any value everyday?--just now and then we come upon it; and while we will do something here today like, "I" think that will be interesting. That is to measure it as being of very little value. There are so many of "my" pet opinions, the things we still own - "my" opinions--we haven't renounced those yet--"my" theories, "my" interests, "my" recreation, and "my" business. All these have to come first. If they come first, one receives very little.
Always you receive exactly as you value. So it is rather easy to see how we value because we can see how much we have received.
"For to him who has, shall be given; and for him who does not have, even that which he has shall be taken away."
One has had instructions, one has studied self, one has observed the self, one has done a certain amount of dis-identifying; but one values many other things greater. Pretty soon he sees it is all gone. He talks to someone: "Yes, I studied that for quite a while. I got pretty far in it, but you know, we had that sickness in the family; and I kind of got out of the habit of doing it."--or "We had an emergency at the business", or one of the help got sick, and I didn't have time to continue it." So one loses it.
It is a very delicate, very precious, and the most valuable thing in the world to this one. What it is to another, I know not. However, we have observed that each gets from it exactly in proportion to how much one sees its value.
So suppose we have as our exercise for this week something in the scale of a measure. We will take a piece of paper and we will put 100% value at the top--zero value at the bottom; and a hundred marks in between. Let's see where we put things through the week. You see, we usually are not conscious of "how we value things" on a measure scale. We think we value everything about equal; and we don't notice that there is definitely a scale in the valuing of things. So let's establish this scale from 1 to 100. The things at 100 are the most valuable. The things at zero are of no value-number one is of a little value. Then let's see by our "spontaneous actions" what we really value.
You see then we might be in a position to observe self some more - rather carefully with more intensity probably. Let's see how we spend out time, our efforts, our money, and what comes first--when two or more things that could be done at the same time--which one of them comes about. We want to observe that which is spontaneous, so we will write it down at night--what came first through the day-second--third, and what was totally left undone through that day. We will make one of these for each day of the week. They will represent to us this measure--how we measure many things. One thing to pay attention to is where the work is measured on our paper- -where the teaching, the instruction, that has been given to us is valued. Where do we put it on the scale of our values? Does a minor inconvenience mean more? Does someone asking me to a party mean more?
Another story on "How We Got Here"
There is another parable we will discuss very briefly at this moment.
A man went out to invite many people to a great dinner. He gave a feast (a feast of instruction); and he invited many. But on the hour that the dinner was served (which is when the instruction is used, and the dinner is of no value until we start eating it), he noticed that nobody had arrived. So he sent runners, servants out to see where all the guests were. The first man they came to said, "Oh, I know, I meant to come to the dinner; but I was just married; and I can't leave my wife, so you will have to excuse me from attending the dinner."
Then they went on and asked another man, who said, "Oh, I meant to come; but I have bought a team of oxen (today, he would say he bought a new semi or a new tractor), and I will have to go try it out, so I will have to be excused."
Another one had purchased a farm and had to go look it over and see what his plans were for the farm. So he would have to be excused. So many are "called"--given the teaching- - and few value it very much.
And then it says, the man who was giving the dinner forgot all of his invited guests; and sent his servants out to gather up people out of the hedgerows, the byways, and wherever they could find someone, that his table could be filled. [and that's all of us.]
So you see the teachings fall to whoever values it. Whenever someone values something else greater than the teaching, of course, he has refused to come to a "feast." Having refused to come to the feast, he loses what he already has. He sees it as low on the scale or measure of values. This is WHAT IS; and we will observe it. We want to find out where we value it. So we will keep track of what we do spontaneously - what we put off until tomorrow; and what we do today.
Obviously, every day work will go on; but there is a time and a place in the mind--in the awareness--for the teaching to be first - whether one is at work or whether one is at home with the family--whether one is entertaining or is being entertained. Always one can use the teachings to interpret all the symbols of the man-made world; and to be more aware or more awake.
In this, one is gradually dis-identifying from many of the things that one has heretofore been identified with, or that has been in control--that conditioning is still operating.
So we will keep our charts and observe what is given first and foremost. We will see what our thoughts are most frequently occupied with. This tells you where the VALUE is. It is really not so very difficult. … See what the thoughts are occupied with mostly through the day; and what they're occupied the most next with; and we'll see whether they're are occupied with the teaching much of the time; or whether it's something that gets an hour or two or a few minutes--an observation here and there or maybe totally forgotten a day--whether it is the thing that is most frequently in the thoughts or the awareness. What is running through that busy section called the awareness.