The games of the mind to retain its tyrannical dominion over the human being, and the power of consciousness to liberate.
SPIRITUAL MYSTIC RETREAT MILAN 25-28 Nov Introduction by Alverto: the nature of human potential.
For many years we have known each other, Elian and I. If we were to stop and look at different moments in our lives, we could affirm that we’ve had moments when we’ve been fantastic and others when we’ve been terrible.
But that observation would be a lie. Human beings are born neither good nor bad. We are born with a possibility in life, and it is the only possibility we have: To flourish, to love, to fly, and to enjoy. But in the process of life appears education, religion, family, morality. The imposition of how we should be, and the idea that we make mistakes, nor fulfill the expectations of our parents. In this way, we disconnect from the essence with which we arrived. We forget that we are a seed with a tremendous possibility of flowering and remain reduced to a thing, to a mechanism, to a mind that has accumulated all kinds of facts, judgements, rejections. It seems that consciousness, respecting its pure and innocent nature, goes to sleep as if it were preferable to staying awake in the face of such disgrace.
We have all been asleep. And surely we are all here right now because we are in a process of awakening our consciousness as if we want to go back to the point where we lost our innocence. But we are surrounded by so many things, so many people who have opinions and coerce us, who think they are the owners of our destiny. As if families, governments, politicians, and religious people have an agreement not to allow us to be free.
Surely, as it has happened to Elián and me in different moments of life, maybe also you, that you have done things you may consider bad, wrong, things that perhaps we shouldn’t have done, but if we look deep inside, we were trying to find a way out. In some moments, we went crazy, we tried everything, and each one chose the path they could to try and reach freedom. Some through drugs, others through work, through hobbies, through money, through sex, through all kinds of superficial or toxic relationships; each one is trying to escape from the prison they ended up confined to, so are we. We look for many possibilities until we find the way to escape.
This encounter is like one of prisoners. We meet many prisoners here in Milan who are interested in and concerned about how to escape the prison they unconsciously built in their own life, and we are here because we have some experience in that.
Perhaps that is the only or, at the very least, the most important thing we can impart in this encounter: to give the keys on how to break out of prison without dying in the attempt. Maybe even enjoying yourself wildly in the process.
One of the options we have observed in human beings to free ourselves from the prison is spirituality, therapy, personal growth, human development. It turns out that all these paths we choose do not lead us to free ourselves from prison, but they create more comfortable, more beautiful cells. They are prisons with more possibilities for movement, a swimming pool, a tennis court, a football pitch. The prison I was in had all of this; we even had a cinema. But you continue to be in prison. In prison, there can be a performance hall we used to go there to play music, to sing, there was a church if you wanted to go and pray, a craft workshop, a creativity workshop, a painting workshop. Prisons are a reflection of exactly how we human beings are living.
And in this intent of wanting to free ourselves, a genuine human attempt, we forgot, or perhaps we didn’t realise, that what we have to free ourselves from is precisely ourselves. Because the prison is not outside; it is inside. If you free yourself from that prison, you free yourself from everything.
To liberate oneself from oneself is the most challenging task for any human being.
I had a comrade in prison who told me several times that he didn’t want to leave prison because he had everything there. He didn’t have to steal or cheat; they gave him food, they gave him everything; he got comfortable, he got used to it. “If I go out to survive, I have to take risks”, he told me, “And then later come back here”. It’s like going out to come back in. I’m sure many of us have somehow embarked on a path out of prison, but we didn’t know that what designed that path was the mind itself, which is the prison; and we have innocently chosen that mentally-created path to get out, and it turns out that it led back in. Even the spiritual path can allow you to seemingly get out only to return to the prison.
Because we have constructed a spirituality totally adapted to the personality, respectful of the I, which it uses to embellish and decorate an ego that lives in hell.
So, to go deeper into this retreat and encounter at this moment, I wanted to transmit the importance of having the courage and the bravery to look at ourselves. To be able to see what our prison is. This is where we are trapped.
The path of consciousness begins this way. For consciousness to awaken, the first thing it must show you is where you are trapped. Many masters say this.
If consciousness hasn’t yet shown you your own prison, you cannot yet realise you are your own jailer; in other words, you are identified with being a prisoner.
If anyone said to you: “Do you want to get out of prison?” and you would answer, “Prison! What prison? If I am free, I have my house and my job, I travel, I go where I want.” Then you have not seen the prison, you are identified with it. Consciousness really begins to awaken when we are face to face with what the prison is. From consciousness, we then embark on a plan to get out.
Consciousness will guide us, but not on a path that returns to the prison.
The disadvantage or the problem that presents itself in this possibility of liberating ourselves is that consciousness has a guide that has two qualities that the human being has disregarded, forgotten, or ignored. It is as if consciousness is telling us, “without the awakening of these two qualities, I cannot guide you anywhere”. Consciousness guides us on the path of freedom through trust and love.
There are many prisoners in the world right now who, when they find out about this, say to themselves: To be free, do I have to reactivate trust and love? Uffff… I prefer to stay where I am. If I have already declared it impossible to love and be loved, and have already seen that trust is of no use at all.
So I want to leave you with this question to begin with: What if freedom depended strictly on trusting and truly loving again?
It seems that trust, in most cases, comes first. It seems to be that one trusts first and then can love.
Whenever you give a child your trust, the child perceives that you love them. Trust goes to the outside, and when it reaches the other, they don’t perceive it as trust; they perceive it as love.
That is why in these retreats, we prioritise the fact that we can create a bond of trust.
That you can discover and know for yourself, by yourself. Where are you now? Who are you with? What are we doing here? To what do we dedicate ourselves?
If we can come together in trust, whether it is one retreat or several, the possibility can also open for us to come together in love.
We will use every moment we share, whether with words or music, to establish a bond with you.
We have not come here to teach nor to give master formulas. It is really very simple what we have come here to do, to be.
Because we know and trust that if something truly significant has happened in our lives, it will transfer to all people. If for Elian or me nothing important has happened concerning freedom, we could show the best techniques, use the best medicines, give the best speeches, but we would only be giving you ideas.
And what we have come to do is expose ourselves in presence to inspire the possibility, the capacity that every human being has to free themselves, by themselves, from themselves; through a peaceful, loving, balanced, sensitive process.
The maladjusted part of us wants to end everything as soon as possible and break away from everything because we are sick of it.
But every aggressive or violent movement we make, even if we are looking for freedom, will not facilitate our exit into freedom.
Everything that we attack or want to destroy becomes a new prison.
If you allow me… it’s so simple, so straightforward. This process of liberation is so divine that if you disappear, the prison disappears.
To disappear means to disidentify ourselves from our own mind. It means to stop being what we thought we were.
And when that happens inside a human being, everything outside that is coercing or trapping us begins to dissolve.
When the light comes on, the darkness goes away. When the truth manifests, the lie falls away.
We are in that.
In the opening of the retreat, I wanted to transmit this, that there is no need to fight with anyone. Freedom is a soft and gentle process, but it is also firm and decisive. There is no way they can detain you; every step you take, there is no turning back, but you don’t need to go against anyone; it’s very simple. You are moving in your own favour, others may interpret that you are moving against them, but it is not like that. I am going for me, and there is no part of me that is thinking of going against all these people who are moving in a different direction. It doesn’t occur to me to stop with any one of them and say, “Hey, let’s go that way.” Nor do I think to have a meeting with all of them to tell them: “You are going in the wrong direction”. It is unnecessary because freedom is an individual thing, not a social thing. Everything social is a natural consequence of what happens at the individual level.
It is certain that, if many of us are acquiring, by our own decision, the desire to achieve freedom against the direction in which society is going, it will create a critical mass of people seeking freedom. And that, unconsciously, will be transferred to other human beings. Furthermore, it fills us with joy and enthusiasm to see that others are also seeking freedom.
To some extent, we can define this retreat as an encounter of people searching for freedom, each one doing it in their own way. And we have come together to share this marvellous fact.
And when people come here, who generally don’t know each other at all, they meet here, make friends and say, “We are encountering people who are searching for the same thing.” I don’t know how Facebook and Google algorithms send advertising for people find out, to people who want to be free. Those are not questions that are there on social networks. When you define your profile, you aren’t asked: Do you want to be free?
How does the algorithm do it? Send messages specifically to people who are in this process?
This is one of the characteristics that define us and unites all of us who find ourselves in this space.
And to conclude this introduction. There is a key to reaching freedom: And that is that you are not going to reach it. Rather, it will come to you, and the only thing you can do is to make yourself available to all that the energy of freedom comes to do in your life, whatever it is, whatever it may be. That willingness for freedom itself to take you out of the place where you are has a name: ENTREGA = SURRENDER.
Surrender, giving in, giving oneself totally, letting go of control. Many words and expressions that represent the same thing. It is like saying: This is not in my hands! And if everything is in the hands of the infinite and eternal wisdom of freedom, it will go wonderfully well. because the human being’s individual process of freedom is not guided by the mind but by mystery.