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If it is bread that you seek, you will have bread,
If it is the soul you seek, you will find the soul.
If you understand this secret, you know you are that which you seek.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.
t’s typical to attempt to control outcomes by applying artificial inclusion-exclusion criteria like external appearance, age, personal interests, socioeconomic status, etc. suggested by your ego, your peers, or your illusions, or simply those criteria already scripted for you by your cultural conditioning. This is very wrong; you are not in control, never were, and never will be. The idea that a person is in control of anything is the root of much of humankind’s suffering; it’s the most core and damaging illusion of humankind. Control requires effort and energy and that effort and energy has to be drawn from some source and redirected away from another aim; what every man must understand is that what he desires, if it is intended to be his, will come to him effortlessly. Neither he nor the desired object, whether a thing or a person, needs to force the conjunction. What you need to do is really very simple: Get out of your own way and just let the godwink happen!
Spiritual traditions suggest that our desires are co-created by a transcendent power. Eight centuries ago, the beloved Sufi scholar and poet Jalaluddin Rūmī penned a poem containing a line that still resonates with readers across the globe today. He is said to have given us the axiom, “What you seek is seeking you.” How is it that a Persian poet-mystic said it best eight hundred years ago when he wrote that perennial māntra?
When a man conducts himself according to this māntra, he surrenders to the belief that he’s not alone seeking fulfillment of his own desires or his individual destiny, that fulfillment is seeking him as well. In metaphysical terms, you wouldn’t have a longing or a desire in the first place if some higher power hadn’t inspired it or located it within you.
What Rūmī is restating very concisely is a very ancient and undisputable law of the universe, something that self-help junkies have mistaken for what we have come to know as the Law of Attraction, a popular movement that gets a lot of undeserved attention these days. I abbreviate it “LA” suggesting the abbreviation for Los Angeles, California, one of the capitals of plastic personalities and the haven of myriad fake guru-s; Law of Attraction became widely discussed when the book, The Secret, was published back in 2006. But Rūmī is far from being the father of popular New Age law of attraction.
Despite the shallowness and narcissism of the Byrnian Law of Attraction, which has become one of those social media–smart phone-age perversions — the basic concept has been around for centuries, even millennia, however. Throughout human history, all cultures have conceived of the notion that that cosmic and universal natural laws; that is, transcendent powers, could be drawn upon to manifest desires and longings, and to attain some form of satisfaction or fulfillment, whether it meant to realize and attain the desired object or to liberate one’s self from the desire or illusion itself.
The underlying mystic principle is that a human being, consciously or unconsciously, attracts events into his life through his energies and vibrational frequencies and resonances. Einstein and Tesla hinted at this in modern scientific ways but when Rūmī wrote the line “what you seek is seeking you,” he was referring to the attraction that occurs between people and objects whose frequencies match — a.k.a. a fundamental law of energetic or vibrational attraction, sometimes referred to as ‘entrainment’ — or, as we might say, they resonate with each other.
The question that the man steeped in western tradition and conditioning, living out western stereotypes of masculinity, and social scripts asks is: “How do I cultivate this kind of trust, surrender to this guidance?”
In this article, I’d like to propose a few ideas to help any man surrender to higher guidance in his life according to this māntra, “What you seek is seeking you.”
Establish a regimen of daily reflection and meditation
Once we start “going to the mat” (practicing reflection and meditation regularly), we stop being under the illusion that our happiness lies in the lap of some external power or person that controls any goal, desire, or longing from attaining fruition or satisfaction. With a regular routine of self-reflection and meditation, you learn to access your ānanda (आनन्द) or fulfillment on a higher level day by day, until it becomes your very nature. When this happens your desires become more fulfillable because their fulfillment becomes natural; in other words, you use your self-awareness and self-knowledge as a way of discerning true fulfillment; your awareness beomes a fulfillment delivery vehicle.
Once you start meditating, you develop an unparalleled access to awareness and fulfillment in the only place you will really find it: within yourself.
Self-focused reflection on who you are, what you are becoming, and what you really want.
Self-reflection, in contrast with meditation, is looking within. When you practice self-reflection, you develop the healthy habit of returning to yourself, which not only enhances your external relations but also your internal relations, which are fine tuned daily through your reflection and meditation practice.
One of the first questions you have to ask yourself is “What do I want?” Follow that question with “Why do I want it?” and a third question — assuming you have a good reason for wanting it — might be “How can I get it?” Naturally, you won’t be able to answer such questions honestly until you can answer the question, “Who am I?”
This is where focus and concentration skills come into play. You see, as long as you hand over control of your thoughts and, when they go to your ego or to some controller outside yourself, you hand over control of your reflection process, which then is no longer yours; the controllers own you.
Furthermore, reflection on these questions should not become work or goal-oriented; the process should remain playful, fun, enjoyable, uplifting. After all, you are becoming acquainted with the real you, instead of the stranger you see every day in the mirror. You are slowly becoming more recognizable to yourself and to your Self.
Try to stay in the realm of desire and longing, reminding yourself that what you seek is also seeking you. Your inmost desire and longing is to be comfortable, truly comfortable with where you are in this moment. Nothing else matters.
Take purposeful and meaningful action; set an intention.
Most people these days just sit and text and sit and chat and sit and wait. Something in them tells them that if you sit and wait, something is bound to happen. It does; you get lonely and bitter. Your dreams don’t materialize when you just sit and wait! You have to take some sort of action that is purposeful, meaningful, and self-relevant; intentional action. I’m here to guide you to that kind of action. Your happiness does not depend on a job, a boyfriend, or anything other than you. Your bliss already is there for you but you have to mine it; it’s there right now within you; job, boyfriend, relationships, wealth have value only if you are fulfilled.
This is a perfect paradox: the more self-aware and self-reflective you become by focusing on your Self, your inner sanctuary, the easier it is for your desires, longings, and Beloved to find you because you are precisely where your truest desires expect to find you. This is probably so, because once you stop obsessing over every interaction or event or perception, you can stop panicking and running around aimlessly, to stop long enough to recognize your desires and opportunities when they appear to you. Knock, knock!
Before I move on in this discussion, let me ask you to ask yourself, “What do I think is seeking me? Next step is to reflect on the difference between that question and “What do I think I am seeking?”
For many of my readers, the Rūmī quote reflects a deep understanding of a the law of attraction; that is, the teaching that your thoughts and intentions draw good or bad things your way, but that modern interpretation is too self-fulfilling, too simplistic, and it doesn’t really capture the real meaning. It has no breadth or depth.
Well, Rūmī didn’t write in English, so we’re saddled with a translation and all translations are suspect. “What you seek is seeking you” is an English rendering of the original Persian text but there’s a slightly different translation of the line as it reads in Persian, where the meaning is more along the lines of ‘What you seek is with you.’ In Homoerotic Yogic Tantra℠ we would say something very close to that: “What you seek is within you.” Seems we’re getting closer.
My two alternatives emphasize that what you’re seeking is closer than you may realize. In fact, it may well be your constant companion without you being aware of it, which is usually the case.
We have to start with knowing the seeker, who he truly is, and this requires self-awareness. In Homoerotic Yogic Tantra℠ as in the Sufi mystic tradition, finding what you desire, what you are longing for, seeking begins with knowing yourself through self-reflection and self-awareness.
Each of us longs to know himself. He longs not just to be finely aware of his own thoughts, emotions, perceptions, feelings, interactions, strengths, and limitations but another part of himself, the ineffable part, the eternal part, the Self, that part of him that is connected to the Source of all existence. Anything, everything you want is there.
Self-awareness is not the same as self-knowledge; attaining self-awareness is one thing, self-knowledge takes a bit more work, and self-realization is the real kicker. It all takes work, commitment, and humility, and the fruits don’t come overnight. This makes it easy for most people to avoid ever getting close to self-awareness, much less self-knowledge and self-realization, because they find it an impossible task to make the time to turn the focus inward — besides, most men are afraid of what they might find there. There’s always work, family, friends, and social media demands to distract them.
But focusing inward may be the key to finding what you seek, at least in the beginning.
I admit that much of what a man seeks on a day-to-day basis is related to the basic necessities of survival. But when things like shelter, food, and security have been met, second level desires can be considered such as career, relationships, better health, and social life, recreational interests.
One of the most troubling things I hear from men on social media is: “I’m looking for a long-term relationship.” It’s almost as if they think or expect that if they look for a long-term relationship, it’s going to happen. I just don’t understand how adult men can be so childish to think that long-term relationships happen right out of the box. They become almost frantic when they hear they can’t just “find a long-term relationship;” it doesn’t work that way. You have to find a twin flame and co-cultivate a seedling relationship, and nurture it constantly over a lifetime. In order to even start the process, you have to be self-aware, vulnerable, capable of surrendering, trusting; the other must do the same. The two Beloveds must be of the same temperament, on the same vibrational frequency; if they are not, they will short circuit. Both will be wounded, suspicious, unable to surrender.
Somewhere between the first level necessities and the second level desires we find the esoteric, metaphysical longings, let’s call them spiritual longings. These longings are often related to deeper needs, such as:
- a sense of meaning and purpose
- self-actualization or self-realization, or the fulfillment of one’s true potential
- direction, or a path to attainment of bliss, true joy
- a sense of belonging, relationship, connection, with yourself, others, and with a deeper source
Perhaps it would be more accurate to describe these as ‘bridge’ or ‘transitional’ longings because they empower or energize seeker to transition from the 1st level to the the 2nd level desires and longings.
The lamp is a common metaphor used in many mystic and spiritual teaching traditions. Some seekers may be more concerned with the physics of how the lamp works, how it functions. Is it working efficiently? Is the wiring safe? Does the design fit the room? But we, as practitioners of the philosophy, spirituality, and science of yogic Tantra, are more concerned with whether the lamp is plugged into a reliable power source.
Now we are faced with the question of how do we connect to an inner, reliable power source? And once we’re plugged in, how do we develop the self-awareness and self-knowledge we need in order to find what we’re really seeking? In other words, it is a question of how we use the reliable power source to power the lamp that lights the path to fulfillment; it’s the same lamp that serves as the beacon guiding the desired, the longed for object to your heart, where it will find you.
Again, I cannot overemphasize that you must have solid grounding in personal and social ethics; you have to be able to effectively discern what is going on around you; I mean you must be able to separate the gems from the junk. Through self-reflection, meditation, self-awareness, and practicing the yogic yama-s (यम) and niyama-s (नियम) you will be able to liberate yourself from the fetters of toxic cultural conditioning, harmful stereotypes, and social scripts that imprison your Divine Masculine Spirit and stifle the inner voice. You’ll be reachable and accessible.
How can you say you want love when you don’t know how to commit to even the most accessible love, self-love? How can you say you want love when you keep setting booby traps for yourself that prevent what is seeking you from finding and engaging you? How can you say you want to love and be loved if all you can do is look at the superficial, without seeing the Divine in the Other? Well, how?
Most spiritual traditions, particularly Yoga (योग) and Tantra (तन्त्र) have no problem describing a clear method and sequence to clear the way for the mystical marriage of two Divine Masculine Spirits, such as:
Reflection and Meditation
There are many, many methods taught for reflection and for meditation practice, and all reflection/meditation becomes personal method over time. For our basic purpose here, let’s just say that meditation is a practice of intentionally quieting your mind, bracketing the outside world, and focusing consciousness. Depending on the type of reflection/meditation you practice, you might be:
- Sitting meditation or meditation in a specific posture called an āsana (आसन).
- Breath focused meditation, called prāṇāyāma (प्राणायाम)
- Sequence meditation, moving through a set of steps or movements
- Māntra (मन्त्र) meditation by reciting a māntra or sacred word
- Nyasa (न्यास), bandha (बन्ध), mudra (मुद्र) meditation, touching, tightening and relaxing parts of the body
- Engaging in ‘prayer’
- Reflection on blessings or boons received
- Focusing on the Inner Voice
There is scientific proof that reflection and meditation enhance one’s ability to perceive and acknowledge what is happening within the body; this is called interoception.
Reflection and meditation also allows you to “witness” your experiences, perceptions, emotions, attitudes, and thoughts. When you develop these skills, you have the power to actually transform your perception of your Self.
A particularly effective basic meditation method might use movement, deep breathing, and guided imagery or visualization to help the practitioner focus and concentrate on his physical heart, for example.
Let go of any perceived limitations, illusions, addictions/attachments
Thoughts, beliefs, attitudes, patterns, habits, attachments, etc. are just some of the obstacles that prevent you from finding what you seek. Learn to identify the obstacles, once you identify them, you name them, and once you name them you have power over them. It is unwise to attempt to suppress them or to ignore them; rather, learn to use the energy you have invested in them to nurture more positive pursuits.
Discernment is not easy, particularly when a man has to be both in the world and of it. If we were all monks living in a closed and orderly community, the task would be far easier. But we’re not monks; we live in a wide world full of paradox, contradictions, diversity, illusions, distractions, attractions, all food for monkey-mind and all with the sole purpose of eating us alive. Being in the world makes discernment very difficult, particularly when a man lacks focusing skills that would allow him to be single-pointed, and thus single-minded, when necessary, which means always and constantly.
You may not be able to do it alone. It may be helpful for you to work with a mentor; if so, you will want to work with a mentor who affirms your spirituality, even if he doesn’t share your own belief or philosophical tradition or orientations. If he practices non-judgment and unconditional acceptance, he is the right choice. If he tries to indoctrinate you, convert you, or push you in a direction in which you are uncomfortable, run away!
Don’t curse the darkness, light a candle; find a mentor
Most men feel that it is important, even essential to find a mentor who can provide guidance that is spiritually affirming, and who can support them in their spiritual challenges. I agree. No mentor should try to change you; rather, he should provide you with the wiggle room to make your own decisions, follow his gentle guidance, and transform at your own pace.
When psychospiritual guidance is spiritually adapted, that is, when it integrates spiritual values, psychospiritual distress is reduced, and spiritual well-being increases in men receiving such guidance.
Keep in mind also that a mentor’s value is not only in his spiritual guidance skills but he’s also able to become a valuable asset when you are coping with physical and emotional challenges. He doesn’t do this by providing you with answers but by guiding you to find your own answers, which then become yours; you own your solutions, in other words.
Once a seeker recognizes whatever it is he desires or is longing for, he must enter into dialogue with his mentor; his mentor is a guide and companion on his quest. A popular saying among authentic spiritual mentors its: “There are many guru-s but few disciples.” This is very true everywhere, and this is where the Rūmī quote applies with particular relevance. Avoid any so-called teacher who has to push his program or any teacher who claims to be right for you, or offers a one-size-fits-all program. You may be seeking a mentor but be patient, he will find you. That’s how it works. You will know because what he has to say will resonate deeply within you, and you will feel a sense of sync; you will be in ‘entrainment’ with him. The mentor should be a man, who has already achieved “it” and listens to what he’s learned. Listen and reflect on what he has to say, even if you disagree, even if he says nothing. An authentic mentor’s silence also speaks volumes; his silence means that he is deeply listening to your words and to your own silences, and to voices, to which you may not yet be attuned. His guidance as a teacher or mentor will have a profound effect on your attainments.
The authentic mentor will have many of the following traits:
- He will be mature and have lived experience.
- He will be able to appropriately communicate and share his relevant expertise in ways that resonate with the seeker, his disciple.
- He will lead by example, generally as a servant leader.
- He will radiate authenticity and integrity.
- He will selflessly devote time and energy to the mentoring process.
- He will create growth opportunities in his disciple.
- He will urge experimentation and imagination in the disciple.
- He will provide honest feedback.
- He will be aware of and sensitive to the beloved disciple’s strengths and challenges.
- He will be in a loving relationship with the disciple.
- He will inspire his disciple to feel safe and ready to accept healthy vulnerability and surrender.
It’s best to avoid any extracurricular reading in the subject matter until you have been thoroughly initiated into the Homoerotic Yogic Tantra℠ system, and have completed at least the solo-cultivation Mascul-IN-Touch℠ program cycle. Dāka (दाक) has spent a lot of time preparing your study materials and your practice and exercise modules; you will have little time for other reading. The world is drowning in so-called self-help books written and marketed by fake guru-s and gobbled up by ignorant consumers seeking instant gratification and confirmation of their own misguided patterns. Avoid them at all costs.
By reading such self-help books I have been able to identify the fools of the world.
I am an avid reader and feel that reading and study is an essential part of a man’s evolution to realization but by reading books by people who claim to have been on the path, a seeker does not find the wisdom that a trusted personal teacher or mentor provides.
While books may inspire and motivate, and broaden your perspective, they generally describe one person’s path through the eyes of that one person. Only after you have attained a degree of competence in spiritual discernment will you be able to separate the gems from the junk you may read. Only an authentic mentor can guide you to attaining such powers of discernment. If your mentor assigns readings for you, those readings are right for you.
It is important that you make your own experiences; don’t rely on the experience of others to guide you, unless they’re your mentor’s, and even then question. I hinted at this when I spoke of books and reading, particularly books like Byrne’s The Secret — which was never a secret for at least 5000 years —, introducing the New Age law of attraction, and discussed briefly above.
Many of today’s problems as experienced by the seeker are because the seeker is living vicariously through others’ experiences, and attempting to live those experiences in his own particular context. This simply does not work; the situations are far too complex. The only way a seeker can expect to reach his goal is to follow his inner voice with the guidance of an authentic mentor, not with the guidance of a social media contact or a Facebook friend or a self-help book.
Your life and path is not a lab experiment where you have a hypothesis, and you try to test it, making observations that confirm your idea, and then believing it is true and real, you attempt to apply it and then fail. It may very well be true and real but it may also be an illusion, or worse. It’s inadvisable to accept any external proposition as is; you must be able to discern its truth and reality for you, you may then attempt to apply it, adopt it, and even own it.
The take-home message is that what you are seeking is seeking you. “What you seek is seeking you” can be interpreted in many ways. Looking at this poetic line through the lens of Sufism, Rūmī’s faith tradition, reveals that its meaning may be closer to the phrase, “Everything you seek is already within you.” But that’s a core principle of traditional Yoga (योग) and Tantra (तन्त्र), and is the starting point for every seeker following Homoerotic Yogic Tantra℠ and practicing the Mascul-IN-Touch℠ system.
The path to finding what your heart-mind desires can begin with understanding who you are — beyond your experiences, your diagnoses, and your physical body. It’s a journey where each step is accompanied by a perception, an experience, a narrative. You are empowered by a Divine power grid, think of it as GPS, god’s power system, that provides reliable power to the lamp that radiates the light of enlightenment and true liberation.
You can try to look inward through reflection and meditation, change the patterns that have held you back, and learn from those around you — and find what works for you.
Spirituality is a beautiful thing, and it is liberating; a man turns to spirituality when he’s struggling, and it’s in spirituality that he finds a deeper meaning.
If something in this article resonates with you, seek it more deeply.
 “Godwink (pl. godwinks) is an occurrence, event or, personal experience, often called coincidence or attributed to some metaphysical force, so astonishing that it is seen as a sign of divine intervention, especially when perceived as the answer to a quest, a deep desire, a wish, or even a prayer. American author S. Rushnell is credited with coining the term in a 2006 book, Divine Alignment. While I do like some of the neologisms, I do recommend healthy skepticism when reading such books.
 Jalāl al-Dīn Muḥammad Rūmī, popularly known simply as Rūmī (30 September 1207 – 17 December 1273), was a 13th-century Persian mystic poet, scholar, theologian and Sufi mystic Rūmī’s influence transcends national borders and ethnic divisions and the world has greatly appreciated his spiritual legacy for the past seven centuries. His poems have been translated into most of the world’s languages and transposed into various traditions. Rūmī has been described as the one of world literature’s most popular poets and the most quoted poet in the United States, and probably worldwide
 Byrne, Rhonda. The Secret. Atria books / Beyond Words hardcover ed. Atria Books; Beyond Words 2018. Byrne’s book introducing the “law of attraction” scam, was launched in the thick of the social media/smart phone age, and it preaches a troubling narcissism and pitches an “I’m the center of the universe” angle that simply restates the misguided ideas of previous so-called self-help pundits. While the previous books may be read to offer well-meant or even reasonable advice for their times and ecologies, The Secret is bloated with disordered clichés, moronic quotes, and superstitious twaddle. It’s one of those insidiously harmful social scripts in a play promoting entitlement and self-absorption; anyone who attempts to implement such advice in real life or takes it seriously as a panacea for life’s challenges is on a path to self harm over the longer term. (See also, The Staggering Bullshit of “The Secret”.)
 I caution you not to make the mistake of thinking I am talking about me-enhancement, the entitlement generation, iGen or anything similar. This discussion is not about self-enhancement but about self-awareness, and seeks to affirm the concept of union and unity embodied in yogic and tāntric science and philosophy.
 Of course, the ancient sages didn’t have electrical lamps but they did have oil lamps, and the metaphor is still applicable, making the necessary alterations, of course.
 The yama-s and niyama-s are the personal and social ethical principles of traditional aṣṭāṅgayoga (अष्टाङ्गयोग) or 8-limbed yoga. The eight limbs are are structured system in which the personal and social ethical principles form the basis for the rest of the system; in Homoerotic Yogic Tantra℠ I teach them as self-standing principles fundamental to the Warrior virtue system.
 Now would be a good time to distinguish between reflection and meditation as I am using the terms in this essay. In reflection, the purpose is to engage the mind. Unlike meditation where the purpose is to turn off or dim our thoughts, let go of monkey-mind, in reflection you activate and engage the thinking process. You actively focus and think about something in particular — a goal, challenge, situation, decision, or simply information that you’ve acquired.
There is also a distinction between practice of meditation and practice of reflection within the domain of zen mindfulness. Mindfulness meditation practice helps you to develop concentration and stillness, which allows you to penetrate into a deeper understanding of the nature of reality. Reflection practice gives you insight into your own mind processes. It allows you to understand how you function and provides you with insight into our strengths and weaknesses. It helps you to effectively and meaningfully analyze ourselves and others. When you reflect on your thoughts and perceptions, or on your life, you approach a higher level of self-awareness.
Meditation, on the other hand, has the capability of rewiring the brain so that some neural connections are moderated, while new connections more efficacious ones are created. You see yourself and others from a different perspective. Overall anxiety is reduced, and your capacity to harmonize and empathize is enhanced. Rather than taking every stimulus and perception personally, you become more balanced and rational in your interpretations and responses.
 In yogic tāntric terms, discernment is what we call viveka (विवेक), a process of moving beyond raw perceptions (what you think you know) to more refined non-judgmental interpretation of those perceptions (what they really are); in other words discernment leads you to distinguish between the real and the unreal, truth from untruth, reality from illusion, and enables you to separate the gems from the junk.
 All change and transformation is accompanied by some degree of discomfort or unease but when I say “uncomfortable” I mean inwardly uncomfortable; something deep within you is telling you that something is not right.
It would be very helpful and generous if you were to leave a comment about your insights and thoughts inspired by today’s text. Please use the Comment feature below to leave your comment/remarks for us to read and reflect on.
Dāka Karuṇā T. (William)
दाक करुणा तान्त्रिक
ॐ शान्तिः शान्तिः शान्तिः ॥
Oṃ śānti, śānti, śāntiḥ ||
Peace to you in body, heart-mind, and spirit!
Of course, if you have any questions or need personal guidance, please contact me.
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