"The message never changes because the problem is always the same: how to rise above imagination to presence.”
 

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“All schools arrive at wordless presence and focus on strengthening this state."
 

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"Live the question, and the answer will belong to the third eye."
 

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“Presence is a divine state which belongs to Paradise. It is placed in the human body to strengthen itself.”
 

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"Who can be still and watch the chess game of the world?"
Lao-Tzu 

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"Only love of presence can defeat the lower self."
 

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"Presence is not interested in being seen, for it knows that would veil it."
 

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"Everyone has a Jesus in him waiting to be born."
Rumi 

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“Presence is sometimes called 'unsearchable,' because the search for presence has to cease in order for wordless presence to emerge.”
 

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“Presence is its own identity, unrelated to any external symbols.”
 

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“School messages are for the simple and unpretentious state of presence.”
 

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"To die, but not to perish, is to be eternally present."
Lao-Tzu 

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"This place is a dream. Only a sleeper considers it real."
Rumi 

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All esoteric schools taught and teach the same thing—how to be present to one’s life. Whether it is called mindfulness, self-remembering, meditation, inner yoga, or prayer of the heart, all real teachings—however complicated their outer forms might seem—are based on this simple effort to be present.

Schools have existed as long as mankind. They loom behind the history of humanity—indeed, one could say they are the real history of humanity—recalling men and women in every era to their true, divine nature. We can trace the signature of schools in prehistoric cave paintings, Egyptian pyramids, medieval playing cards, Gothic cathedrals, and Mayan sculptures. The myths and allegories of all spiritual traditions represent the struggle of the hero to resist the temptations and distractions of his imaginary lower self, and recognize his beloved, his Higher Self.

Because this struggle is objective, schools have perfected their knowledge and methods of awakening, and these are passed down from school to school in the form of symbols or keys. As a school slowly crystallizes into a formal religion—Zoroastrian, Jewish, Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, or Moslem—the inner meaning is easily lost, because understanding the inner meaning requires presence. Then the outer meaning is enacted, as Mayan priests literally “raised the hearts” of victims up to the gods, or Buddhists cut off their hair rather than cutting off thought, or Christian ascetics fast by refusing food rather than by abstaining from mental activity. A real school reminds us to practice the inner meaning, which always points to the same effort: controlling imagination to create a space for divine, wordless presence.