Tuesday, June 7, 2011


This question sounds trivial or even ridiculous but I understand the underlying frustration. Countless writings, countless teachers, countless philosophies over two thousand years all in the name of enlightenment or insight or our true nature and there is no real consensus as to what we are searching for or even what the terms mean.

One school may speak of individual suffering, another the suffering of others, while others speak of social activism or insight through meditation or chanting and on and on and on. The variations and approaches are endless.

I cannot speak for any school or any individual for that matter since people can search for whatever they wish. And they do under whatever name that suits them. The question can be answered but it may not mean much to you. It will sound vague, even silly, too metaphysical. And that is because your mind operates dualitically, insisting that there must be a subject and object in everything. And it is precisely that conceptual thinking that blocks the insight you desire. Please see my earlier postings where I attempted to unwind the barriers of dualistic thought. Nevertheless, the common theme, the common goal of the most comprehensive and focused mystics, sages, and philosophies, can be expressed in maybe not 50 words or less but, not that many more if you insist. How about the following?

Awareness and reality are identical. Form is emptiness. Emptiness is form. Awareness manifests every fact and quality of the entire universe. Absolutely nothing exists independently. Our awareness is an integral component of the universe. We believe that every object in the universe independently possess all the attributes and qualities that make them that object and our eyes see them or our minds think about them. Separately. Actually, those qualities exist only in awareness. Those qualities are awarness. Whether directly experienced or thought about. Has any object ever had a color or an appearance without a mind perceiving it? Colors, appearance, feeling, sound, anything is a mind object, is a manifestation of awareness. So are we saying objects or energy or matter does not exist? Of course not but the way we see and experince those objects is our awareness and our awareness is those abjects, like a universal partneship, where definition and experience are one. So are we also saying that if no awareness exisited, no object, in fact the universe itself would not exist? Of course not. The universe and every object in it would have no appearanc or no qualities or no definition, existing in its unmanifested, undefined nature beyond our perception and understanding. Remember, quantum theorists and others are already saying the deeper down and closer you look, nothing solid or fixed or definable is even there. As one sage put it, an indeterrminable flux. So awarness does not look upon the universe as a separate thing, awareness defines, colors, and manifests all that we know and all that we know is awareness.

Impossible to believe? You already know the old adage that when a tree falls in the forest with no one near by, it makes no sound. Sound requires a mind and awareness. That does not mean there is not a vibration or motion but vibration is sound only when it is heard. What about the room your are in. The objects have form and color and dimension and many other qualities. Turn out the light, and there is nothing. That does not mean there are not objects in there exisitng in some nature with relationships and compnents and structure and movement, but they have no color or appearance or qualities until they are seen. But what is so difficult to get, is that the sound, qualities and appearance do not exist independently within the objects but only within awareness. The sound, qualities and appearance are awareness and awareness is the sound, qualities and appearance. They are identical. They are non dual. Subject is object and object is subject. That is why we can truthfully say every object in the universe as we know it is your awareness and your awareness is every object in the universe as we know them. You cannot have one without the other because they are one, not two. When you separate them, that is dualism and that is how we live our lives.

If you instead live your life from a non dual perspective, everything changes profoundly. It is a gateway to insight and understanding. You are no longer a tiny, vulnerable mind and body gazing upon a vast, nearly infinite universe. You realize that what you are is the universe looking upon itself, experiencing itself, similar in a way that you look upon and experience your own dreams. And from that realization, the beginning of freedom and an end to suffering flows.

1 comment: