Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The mirror and its reflection.







After a certain time, one has the feeling that life, existence and one's sense of beingness is rather like the reflection in a mirror.


Abiding as the "I am"-ness, or beingness is key. We need to start from where we find ourselves in life. For most, this is in total identification with the body-mind complex. We have been conditioned to believe and know ourselves only as this body-mind. Conditioning that has happened over the long course of our entire life (from around age 2), and over the course of the collective human existence as a whole. We cannot think or analyze our way out of this situation, any more than we can think our way out of eating lunch today.
 
By abiding as the "I am" for as much as possible, and whenever possible, we slowly come to know the situation as it really is. A subtle sense of being more than just the body-mind complex becomes apparent or intuited.


The life that we thought we 'owned' starts to reveal itself as merely the play of forces, conditions, and factors, which themselves are reflections in the 'mirror' of being. But this has to be experienced directly, rather than thought about or believed.. lest this too become another belief system parking-spot.


The mirror, its light and the play of the light (appearing as the dancing reflection) is just one wholeness- hence the term 'nonduality'. Any duality appearing in the whole, such as the reflection and its seeming parts, can't be outside or separate from the whole- any more than waves could be separate from the ocean (to coin a commonly used metaphor).







Sunday, August 6, 2017

Attention to living feeling thinking

"You live, you feel, you think. By giving attention to your living, feeling and thinking, you free yourself from them and go beyond them. Your personality dissolves and only the witness remains. Then you go beyond the witness. Do not ask how it happens. Just search within yourself."

Nisargadatta


This is a result of abiding in the I-am, instead of being absorbed in living, feeling and thinking objects.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Ego preservation strategies (1)



Saw this conversation recently online in a 'nonduality' forum:


Questioner: What do people think about the ego? It's hard to find when it is looked for. Maybe these practices are just engaging the ego itself?


Respondent 1: Well I've never found the ego.. I don't know what people are talking about when they talk about 'ego'.


Respondent 2: Who's asking??


----------------


Are these sorts of question / answer sessions really helpful?


No. Neither for the questioner who is none the wiser, nor for the respondent.


What are these sorts of responses, actually?


Ego preservation strategies.


Ego preservation strategy 1) Blatant denial of the ego by the ego-- "It doesn't exist!", "What? There's no such thing as an ego.. find me one!", "I can't find any ego here!"


Ego preservation strategy 2) Over-exertion or over-effort in trying to extinguish the ego by the ego-- "Kill the ego!", "I need to fight the ego, suppress it, and conquer it!", "I need to detach from the ego!"




Stay calm. Keep practicing.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Pure awareness- note.





I recently found a quote with the book 'The Seven Steps To Awakening' (ed. Michael Langford). It contained a quote from the Yoga Vasistha (The Supreme Yoga), an ancient Indian yogic text, that states:


"Consciousness does not truly undergo any modification nor does it become impure."


further,


"Nothing is created in or by cosmic consciousness, for it remains unchanged and unmodified."


I would like to draw attention to the idea of 'pure consciousness', which is spoken about in nondual teachings.


This term does not actually mean that consciousness can be or become 'impure', or that there are two types of consciousness- a mixed, impure consciousness and a pure unadulterated consciousness. It is also not referring to pure in terms of good/bad, morally speaking.


The term is rather a pointer to the idea of consciousness alone. When starting to work with the idea of consciousness (or awareness), a beginning point is often emphasized- to become acquainted with just consciousness, rather than the objects appearing in consciousness. Likewise, the idea is introduced to become more familiar with the subject of experience, rather than objects appearing in and as experience.


This pointer achieves 2 aims- 1) the seeker is led to the discovery that consciousness or awareness must be prior to the appearance and disappearance of objects that arise in one's experience, and 2) consciousness cannot be denied or negated, since the very denial must also appear within consciousness. There is also the added bonus that allows one to become less identified and enchanted with objects, events etc. appearing in one's experience, and more interested in the actual source of such objects and events in one's experience.


Ultimately however, it may be seen and experienced with increasing duration, that consciousness cannot be separated from the objects that appear in experience. Can a border between subject and object be found? Likewise, the search for consciousness is being conducted by consciousness itself, which has no observable characteristics, being self-evident only. The practice of self-enquiry and self-investigation (e.g. "Who am I?") is a practical and useful way to investigate and repeatedly experience this point.





Sunday, April 30, 2017

Self-inquiry and Maturity

SELF-ENQUIRY AND MATURITY

The devotee: “It is for that, is it not, that Bhagavan says that the best thing to do is to follow the path of Self-enquiry of ‘Who am I’?”

Bhagavan: “Yes; but in the Vasishtam it is mentioned that Vasishta told Rama that the path of Self-enquiry should not be shown to anyone who is not sufficiently qualified. 

In some other books it has been stated that spiritual practices should be done for several births, or for at least twelve years under a Guru. 

As people would be scared away if I said that spiritual practices had to be done for several births, I tell them, ‘You have liberation already within you; you have merely to rid yourselves of exterior things that have come upon you’.

Spiritual practices are for that alone. Even so, the Ancients have not said all this for nothing. If a person is told that he is the Godhead, Brahman itself, and that he is already liberated, he may not do any spiritual practices, thinking that he already has that which is required and does not want anything more. That is why these Vedantic matters should not be told to spiritually undeveloped people (anadhikaris); there is no other reason.” And Bhagavan smiled.

- Letters no 158

(Ramana Maharshi)