Seeking The Middle Way To Cast My Self Clear Of Its Shadow


This application for the 2017 Parallel Perception Scholarship was submitted by Russell Teesdale. If you would like to offer your support for Russell please leave a comment at the end of this blog post.

Discovering Lujan’s teachings this past year has reignited within me, a mysterious dance between the mundane, the arcane and the scripted self.

Facing the mundane since reading the first gate teachings has unravelled a silent doorway through the world of normal everyday activity and uncovered an interstitial layer of emptiness and movement accessible by reversing the senses. Fluid in feeling; like a shifting alignment, mirroring ripples of self reflection. There is a strong pull to explore its depths with unwavering determination.

There is also a sense of trepidation that without guidance, I could trip and fall from the path. After all, access has not eliminated the distraction of the scripted self and the pampering to whims that arise fleetingly in the mind. Uncaught and led astray; it is possible to follow the steps back to the first gate again. But, with the correct alignment, the intent is to seal those leaks altogether.

Time spent practicing the eight gates appears to increase synchronicity within daily life. Manifesting in subtle ways, it often removes the need to choose between outcomes. Moments of initial separation project into a wider melody if allowed to play out. Choices are more immediate: whether to interfere or not. Resistance to the act of interfering becomes a rung of the ladder.

As the scripted self begins to peel off the page ever so slowly, creaking with bone-cracking attachments, forgotten memories spark off in all directions. Like echo chambers converging into a wave, breaking as soon as they attach to an identity; one’s touch has to become light and sparing to remain in place of the witness.

Listening to the stories of the Nagual Lujan Matus and his students throughout the books and audiobooks, have added further insight into the impeccable spirit and teachings of Don Juan Matus with refreshingly direct clarity. So many teachings left wild and untamed by Castaneda have been neatly presented into an accessible approach that mesh so succinctly with the Taoist and Buddhist teachings I feel so grateful to have received.

The reassurance of Lujan’s words, spoken with an unrelenting heart have roused my spirit out of lethargy. Misgivings conjured from a sense of entitlement have begun to thaw again. I am all too aware of a shadow riding my personal will even as I write this submission. It seeks recognition and validation. To see it clearly and cut it off is the intent of this submission. And yet, how to place oneself before the others applying for this scholarship who are equally deserving remains unresolved in my heart and so I bring it up and cast it like a pebble into the unknown.

I wish to galvanise my spirit so that I can explore the mystery of being with every fibre of my being and no longer be a burden to others. I would deeply value the mirror of Lujan’s impeccability to point out blind spots where eye cannot see and continually fall and stumble into ignorance. Aware of the dichotomy of prayer and preyed, I seek a middle way through the maelstrom to cast my self clear of its shadow.

Thank you for your consideration and the opportunity to apply.

Russell Teesdale


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  1. Russell, that was stunning. Poetic, even.

    I too felt the same way. I wished to remain silent and not give into my internal script but then how do we apply for this scholarship if not write about our experience?

    I wish you luck!!!

    • Thank you Emma. I too, see a lot of my path in yours. Reading through, I feel all entries worthy of the scholarship and would find it very tough to choose between them. I wish you the best of luck!

  2. Deep thanks for your words, Russel, they resonate deeply. Thank you for your courageous transparency.

  3. Good lord! I find that speaking from the heart or our energy body tends to be clear, simple, and concise. When it gets this wordy and complicated it’s from the mind. Nothing wrong with that, but it’s so slow. I understand the self-reflection in all this wordiness. But it’s too much. I say just stop for a moment! Your heart will quickly tell you which way to go. We don’t have to prove we’re smart and good with words. It seriously depletes us.

    • Firstly look at your own opinion before you ridicule another. Kindness and understanding is more powerful than its opposite.

      I say just stop for a moment! Your heart will quickly tell you which way to go

    • Thank you Adele. An unexpected response, as a pinch to a dreamer.

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