Reply To: Level 1 Audio Discussion Forum #2

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Kemet Lesson 12 Audio Assignment
What are the main teachings brought out in the audio lecture recording? Explain in your own words.
The main teachings brought out in the audio lecture recording is how to be a successful student which was said to consist of two primary aspects a) The learning process and b) the aspiration process. In terms of being a learning process it must be recognized that the study of the teaching is a specialized process in the same manner that one specializes in a particular area of study as a college student. In studying the teachings we are specializing in two primary areas a) exploring the mysteries of creation (cosmology) and the mysteries of our own being (ontology). The primary method by the teachings are explored is through the Shedy disciplines all of which are designed for us to be able to penetrate the mysteries.

As a learning process Shedy may be thought of as another aspect of the notion of the trinity since it requires three elements 1) the Sebai or authentic teacher—one who knows the teaching and able to impart it in an effective manner 2) Sebait which is the name of the teaching, specifically the higher mysteries which places emphasis on self-knowledge, that is, exploring such fundamental questions as Who am I? Why am I here? Where do I come from? 3)Sebat is the student who receives the teaching. Here the relation between teacher and student, on a metaphysical and metaphorical level, may be said to be dictated by gender whereby the teacher assumes the role of the male and in so doing impregnates the student with the seeds of the teaching. In assuming this female centered posture, the student receives the teaching and is fertilized by it.
I think that it is worth noting that, for males who are socialized in a masculinized, male dominant culture, this gendered dimension of the teaching process can be a challenging one since, on an ego-centered level, it may threaten some of the more fundamental dimensions of their phenomenal identities this being their sexual and gender identities. To be receptive to the teachings therefore requires that the student works towards integrating and ultimately transcending these various dimensions of their phenomenal identities. I would imagine that for many potential aspirants this issue serves as one of the more important barriers that prohibits them from being engaged in the teaching.

Another dimension of the learning process is that to be a successful aspirant one must have faith in one’s capacity to understand and assimilate the teaching; one must have faith in the teaching itself recognizing its authenticity, value, and worth; one must also have faith in the teacher, also recognizing their authenticity and credibility, trusting that they will lead us towards the cherished goal of enlightenment.
It was also pointed out in the lecture that the learning process may be thought of as having four steps: 1) Listening 2) Reflecting 3) Meditating and 4) Expressing the teachings. The best way to learn the teachings is to teach the teachings since this requires that one has first understood and assimilated what one imparts to others. It should be pointed out here however, that even though one may know have a thorough knowledge of the teaching, based on one’s Ariu, one may not be able to be an effective teacher.

The second aspect of being a successful student relates to the notion of aspiration. This concepts speaks to the student’s understanding of life’s purpose and goal, this being that of achieving spiritual transcendence or enlightenment realizing that this and only this constitutes what may be considered as being infinite and enduring in comparison to worldly goals that are transient and ever-changing. Being an aspirant involves viewing life as a series of lessons with the goal of life being that of discovering the divine self through the purification of thoughts, actions, and emotions.

Another quality of aspiration is living a life of virtue which allows one become detached and dispassionate, perceiving and embracing things that are righteous while and avoiding things that are unrighteous thus establishing purity within oneself.
A third quality of aspiration is for the student to be self-reliant in terms of having a singular purpose with the goal of enlightenment always in sight. One has to be wise in terms of how one expends one’s energy realizing that the more energy one expends on worldly pursuits is the less one will have to expend on one’s spiritual endeavors.
To be successful as a student one should be mindful of the following formula:
Purity of heartAspirationWillpowerSustained Effort

Other qualities of aspiration that makes for a successful student is being consistent in one’s practice and having good association. Also one should remember when taking notes to focus on things that are important or that is in need of further clarification. Finally, aspiration involves learning to love the teachings. We will find that when we understand the teachings we will become peaceful and detached.
Are you currently implementing the teaching given in the book and lecture? If so which ones?

Having this lesson at this particular juncture of the course serves as a reality check in making me aware that even though I have been engaged in the teachings for approximately three years now, my Shedy practice is far from perfect. I am still not as consistent in the practice as I would like; I still allow my worldly engagements to disrupt my stability, poise and equanimity. Even though improving, my practice is still not as integral as I would like it to be. On the other hand even though I still have challenges with meditation and devotion I am however able to recognize the benefits they have when done properly and consistently.

If not then how will you implement the teachings you are not currently practicing in your life and spiritual practice?
I intend to improve my practice of the teachings by first being mindful of the following formula
Purity of heartAspirationWillpowerSustained Effort

This will require being more disciplined in terms of the consistency of my practice even if this means doing each for a short period each day, having a dispassionate stance in relation to worldly endeavors, trying to sustain a witnessing consciousness. I intend to make a special effort to be more engaged in my classes in a consistent manner.