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Impersonal friendship and a new kind of mind

Over the 9 years that I have offered online teachings, I have come to love the way themes and breakthroughs seem to happen around the world with different people at the same time. The more time and space we leave open, the more emerges. Online meetings allow a kind of impersonal friendliness that often gets obscured when we interact in person.

David Bohm captures (below) his experience of how Dharma emerges within a group of people, with commitment and openness, friendliness, and the magic of aliveness--for him, the space in which Dharma emerges is dialogue, and "for him, "meaning" is the word for Dharma or a leading edge of breakthrough..

Remarks on the process of dialogue

As mentioned in the introduction, the weekend began with the expectation that there would be a series of lectures and informative discussions with emphasis on content. It gradually emerged that something more important was actually involved - the awakening of the process of dialogue itself as a free flow of meaning among all the participants.

In the beginning, people were expressing fixed positions, which they were tending to defend, but later it became clear that to maintain the feeling of friendship in the groups was much more important than to hold any position.

Such friendship has an impersonal quality in the sense that its establishment does not depend on a close personal relationship between participants. A new kind of mind thus begins to come into being which is based on the development of a common meaning that is constantly transforming in the process of the dialogue. People are no longer primarily in opposition, nor can they be said to be interacting, rather they are participating in this pool of common meaning which is capable of constant development and change. In this development the group has no pre-established purpose, though at each moment a purpose that is free to change may reveal itself. The group thus begins to engage in a new dynamic relationship in which no speaker is excluded, and in which no particular content is excluded. Thus far we have only begun to explore the possibilities of dialogue in the sense indicated here, but going further along these lines would open up the possibility of transforming not only the relationship between people, but even more, the very nature of consciousness in which these relationships arise.

The preface to the book Unfolding Meaning

David Bohm




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