Ken Mellor

As many of you know, we in the The Awakening Network have never thought it important to establish a group or a movement. There are already enough of those in the world without adding another. Also, we know that we find ourselves "within", not using the artificial props of "external reality". Names or labels give some people the impression that they are involved in something that is "exclusively or excludingly" unique - and this is false.

We (Ken & Elizabeth Mellor) have developed only some of what we teach and, to the extent that any of us can lay claim to originality, these materials and practices are our original versions of what is helpful. Usually, however, many others have arrived at similar conclusions in their own way. So, while original in our lives, they are not original in the broader scheme of things. Why,then, act as if they are original to us by giving a special name to what we are doing? Also, much of what we teach comes from others.

What we all share in the Network is important, fundamental to our ongoing development as human beings and to our Awakening. It can lead us all to the Fulfilment of the Ultimate. Yet, it is only one way of doing it and blends well with many other approaches. We are interested in fostering sharing, cooperation, mutual respect, the valuing of the unique contribution every person and every movement can make to all others. We support the strengthening of loving support between people.

In this context, it seems to us that the days of realising "I am a this or a that" are over. Realising"I AM" is much more important. Pressed in the past to give some sort of label to the meditation we do, we have not done so. People can too easily think that they have discovered something, if they can start to label what they are doing. This can hinder realisation.

"I am a Buddhist", "I am a Catholic", "I am a Hindu" and other labels, can simply lead people to a false sense of security. They can think they actually know who they are as they say, "I am a Y"statements they can make using them. "I AM" is what we need to realise. Awakening lies along the path of understanding this. To assert "I AM" and then to discover what this means, is far more important in the Ultimate quest, than to assert "I am a X" and to explore that.

It is similar in relation to what we call what we do. "I am doing Y", or "I do Y" has the same inherent difficulties. There are many meditations, yogas and spiritual practices. A very short list includes Transcendental Meditation, Vipassana Meditation, Tantrik Meditation, Siddha Yoga,Raja Yoga, and Hatha Yoga. Each can make its own contribution to us. Yet, knowing the label of what we do is still not to realise what is available through the doing. We may know that people standing in a kitchen acting in certain ways is called "doing the dishes", but still never successfully wash a dish ourselves. Perhaps the statement, "I meditate" is the simplest and most helpful.

We have sought, accordingly, to encourage everyone to explore their own Being in ways that directly promote this exploration. We have deliberately refrained from providing much external structure and explanation, we give as much assistance as we can through teaching all the effective procedures we know for the Awakening of the Divine.

From a slightly different perspective and with the same understanding, we also regard the Network's organisation as trivial compared to the purposes we are all pursuing with meditation. The organisation is simply an administrative tool. The Awakening Network Inc. would not exist except for the legal requirement to have an entity that can start bank accounts, conduct business, and be exempted from paying certain taxes.

The organisation is merely an administrative tool. We think of each of the organisations and committees and informal administrative structures in the network from this point of view.

The purpose of Awakening comes first. Purpose guides administration. For example, we only setup administrative structures when what we are currently doing can no longer proceed effectively or efficiently without modifying the existing ways of doing things. We also dismantle administrative structures as soon as possible after it becomes obvious that they are no longer useful. Perpetuating and administering an administrative structure for the sake of doing it is, in our view, a waste of time and resources. We would be better using the time and resources in realising our meditative purposes.

We at the centre of the The Awakening Network's administration think of everyone associated with the meditation we do as part of a network. A network is a collection of people who have direct or indirect links with each other. The only necessity to be part of a network, to contribute to it with your presence, is to make the link.

There is a variety of links in the network. A primary link is established through initiation into the Mantra Meditation. We initiate people in person, or by tape. Other links are established through attendance at workshops and courses, through the use of any of the available recorded meditations, through course material, or other contact, such as, through this Web site.

Membership of the Network is merely a more formal link between people. It is an administrative system that is designed to provide more structured contact for those who want it. It is similar with the Training Program. Joining it, formally links those interested in more structured relationship, into an educationally oriented form of contact.

This network is easy to engage with and as easy to disengage from. All anyone needs to do is to start, or stop.

We, as a network, operate differently from the way many groups operate. This does not make what we do better than them, however, only different. We do it differently because we see this as the most effective way to support the achievement of the Network's purposes.

Groups tend to have a greater emphasis on membership, on how to get in and how to get out again, on protecting group identity, on those who belong and those who do not belong, on defending the group from external threat, and other similar issues. We think that these types of issues are distractions to the main purpose of the Network.

This is a new way of thinking for many people. Many have grown up in contexts in which group memberships, loyalties, differences and struggles, were regarded as fundamental. Many people even grew to experience themselves as the group, as if their identities were in some way primarily from the group. For example, "I am a doctor, plumber, etc.", "I am a company man/woman", or"I am a student". In line with what we have already mentioned, we think that it is much more accurate to say, "I do "doctoring", plumbing etc.", "I do company work", or "I do studying". By emphasising things in the way explained, we again seek to encourage everyone to what is essential about themselves.

Similarly, because in this network, there are some quite large concentrations of people, usually located in particular areas, at times, some people in these areas begin to identify themselves with the area. "I am from the X group". When they do, they are encouraged simply to think in terms of "I usually meditate in the X area." It is more accurate, for there are no groups as such in any particular area. There are merely people collected in a network, some large, some small, some very active, some relatively inactive. So, while this network provides all the things mentioned, it does not provide anyone with an identity.

In summary, we conceive of the people associated with us and each other as a large network of people, some more or less alone, some in large concentrations (denser areas) within the network. It is an open and fluid system that continues to evolve and change. Easy to contact and easy to disengage from, it is a wonderful means of finding and providing the valuable support and contact that helps us all progress more rapidly than we would alone. It also provides the personnel to manage various aspects of the program.

If anyone needs to think of any group for any reason, it seems to us that we are best to make that group humanity as a whole. Within the group, we simply have a vast network of individuals,linked to each other in myriad ways as they get on with their lives.

Produced by The Awakening Network Inc.
P.O. Box 271, Seymour, Victoria 3661, Australia
Telephone: +61 3 5799 1198
Facsimile: +61 3 5799 1132
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