The realm of “spirituality” is becoming like computer jargon. Every now and then, a “new concept” appears. Something that will set the trend for all new spiritual books in the market and gurus to write about and of course sell….
“I try to live in the “now” while practicing mindful awareness and becoming the embodiment of peace.”
Observe the accurate use of concepts. The latest jargon. Impressive stuff to teach to others…
However, that is worth absolutely nothing at all.
Because lots of “teachers,” gurus and self-appointed luminaries; talk the talk but they cannot walk the talk. Their consciousness is not there yet.
Throwing concepts out there for others to learn, is of no use. After all Life is not a University. In a College or school, to repeat concepts, definitions are important to pass the course. Life does not work like that. It doesn’t matter how many accurate definitions we could come up for the word Love; if our consciousness, our BEING, is not Love.
That is why a brainy individual came up with yet another concept to sell: “Embodiment.”
There are teachers teaching “embodiment” of something: Sensuality, compassion, love, peace, nonviolent communication, etc.
The concept of “embodiment” is equivalent to the word I use in these writings as “BEING.”
BEING cannot be taught. It cannot be rationalized into a method. BEING changes by itself through Life experiences.
Karen said: “Charlie is so loving.”
It means nothing; other than support of the idea that Karen has about love. What Charlie IS (BEING) has been identified by Karen with the label of Love.
Please observe that everything we say about others is only a reflection of us, for we could recognize that in others.
Karen IS like Charlie.
This explanation could be cleverly made into another “method” to sell “spirituality:”
“Say good things about others, and YOU will be that, or your money back.”
LIFE IS. BE AWARE. That which we call “I” is not separated from Life itself.
What we ARE cannot be put into words or concepts. It is not for others to say what we ARE. Only we could discover by observation, what we ARE, and we cannot put that into a label (I AM a good person) neither into a definition of ourselves (I am the embodiment of intelligence) or a moral judgment ( I am a sinner.)
The minute we believe in the labels we give to ourselves, we have hindered the opportunity to learn through openness of the “I.”
At that point, there is continuous support and growth of our ego-mind.
We ARE continuous change because Life IS change.
Yes, it is a definition. Thus, erase it from your mind. Discover what Life IS.
Teaching through words, are an attempt to put Life into a shoe box. It just will not fit, but yet; we rely in those words as the ultimate “truth.”
One more thing about Being the Embodiment:
Someone who IS walking the journey of self-realization couldn’t charge for “his knowledge.” Because it is not “HIS” knowledge. It has never been “His.”
Those who put a $$ into their “teachings,” are not the embodiment of what they talk about. Typically, most only transmit second hand information. They charge for their time to learn or get that information, for their expenses, etc.
Traditionally, a master will choose his disciple. To learn from him meant to BE with him. A disciple could accept or not.
Nowadays, disciples choose their teachers and teachers charge for their teachings. It is a transaction.
Do we see the change? It is not a question of “good or bad.”
Life is change. 🙂
In your view, what is the most valuable “practice” in the path of self-realization?
That question is not properly made. It is biased with the belief that we need to “practice” to achieve something in “spirituality” to become a “better” person.
Nevertheless, let me share my experience.
To learn to be comfortable with yourself and to have a full life while living alone, is the most important “practice.”
Most “spiritual” people may understand this as to “force yourself” to DO it, because practice “makes perfect.” That is the conditioning, the discipline of practicing something to “achieve it.” That is fine for man-made ideals, but BEING does not change like that.
Life will put you in that situation. That is the natural path, that goes along with individual readiness.
Someone who is not ready, will internally fight it. Outwardly he may be living a life of a hermit like monks and nuns DO. However, they are busy with their own mental ideas, desires and needs to achieve Paradise, enlightenment and favors from God.
When you are comfortable with yourself, at peace; there is nothing to DO, nothing to achieve, nothing to look forward to. In our language and conditioning that may sound as the description of a “loser,” but it is far from it. It is the plain enjoyment of your own company and the experience of feeling fulfilled, at peace, vital.
This is not a compulsory activity (DOING) to become enlightened or “better.” It is a harmonized, natural response of being at peace.
It is in that state of balance how we discover the meaning of to “live in the now,” for the mind cannot go to the future as there is no need to achieve anything: No prize, no grandiose ideal to become, no “spiritual” after-life fantasy to get.
Going into the memories of the past, will show me all the pieces of the riddle which are building the “now,” although without identification with the one who at one time “I was,” the traumatic past experiences do not have the pull to remain in my psyche and change my enjoyment into sadness. The one from that past is not the same as the one who is now. Even though we have the same name and the same memories, there is no continuity of that “I” internally. “I” am free by not BEING a particular “I” at any point in time, by not defining me.
When the mind has no place to go, then enjoyment arrives through the feeling of BEING at peace, in harmony with “what is.”
The mental conditioning of what is supposed to be “fun,” or enjoyable does not allow us to BE, for the mind will look for that idea as the definition of success. Anything less is failure and the conditioning is to avoid it at all costs.
Define something, then that exists. Make that into an ideal to obtain, and the “reality” will be that it cannot be obtained. However, the mind will be entertained with the possibility to achieve that.
What is what I can DO to “improve”?
Become aware of the conditionings. Not to reject them, but to observe that any decision, any choice that we think we make, is coming from certain conditioning which we label as “truth.”
This awareness of all those things that we have learned through conditioning, is the “solution” that will prompt us to unlearn.
Without unlearning there cannot be newness.
Without newness, life may be the “same old thing.” 🙂
What is the value of collectively defining who we are?
Some definitions: Souls, Love, Spirits, bodies, nothing, everything, etc.
When we hear that we are “truly love,” what actually that means?
Nothing. However, we like to repeat that; we like to make it into a discussion, we like to create spiritual workshops, classes with such definitions.
Our minds maybe interested in information, in the latest discoveries of science in reference to our “true” nature, or in the latest religious belief; but until we abandon completely the things of the mind, there cannot be inner knowledge, there cannot be a starting point in self- realization.
Our society surrounds us with useless information in “spiritual topics,” away from the awareness of our presence. That information will foster our addiction of living Life through the mind.
I’d like to share that “spirituality” from my viewpoint is only related with living Life fully, that means, by being aware of the “now.”
Any information as to who “I am”, or what “should be”, or what “I will become”, it is completely and utterly useless. Any questioning requiring a verbal answer is only a step away from feeling Life in the now. When the mind is engaged through those questions, Living Life “now” becomes another idea, something away from the “now.”
There is a process in Life.
Many are trapped with their own minds. The process of “liberation,” may be equal to being born again. This is not something that we can DO, but rather it happens when it is our time, then all conditions will be present. It may not be something which we call “good” according to our conditioning, but the opportunity is right there.
Before that process, we probably indulged with many answers, many beliefs. Our minds became full of information about how to become enlightened or how to be near God, or any other mental goal to entertain us.
Those mental goals only replicate our previous conditioning, what we have learned through our experience with society.
I know this may be hard to swallow. There may be many “thinkers,” arguing about the value of “spiritual” information, the value of scientific research, etc.
However, what I am referring to is not “theory.” You must experience it to understand.
Unless you abandon all the definitions about yourself; there cannot be a space to observe the mind.
Without observing the mind, there is no chance of being AWARE of how much the mind interferes in our joy and in the experiences where letting go and surrendering to Life are needed.
Love, sex and death are such experiences. The mind will interfere with questions and answers in its need for control. Greater need for control means a great inability to surrender to the moment.
Most everyone admires children. That innocence, that ability to live in the “now,” that energy comes from no-mind. As the child is trained to worship words and ideas, to obey certain paragraphs, his Life becomes mental and from there, goals, achievements, purposes will drive their lives and take away their joy.
This does not mean that society corrupts the children. No. Society only provides with a Life under a different consciousness. The child will learn to call that consciousness “real,” the “real Life,” when in fact, it is only a perspective of it. 🙂
A reader asked to elaborate in the following excerpt of a previous writing (“Sensual pleasure in spirituality.”)
“Thinking separates the subject and the object. It is in that separation when “loneliness” arrives. However, not only loneliness arrives but everything else that we believe to be “me.” Neediness, emotional traumas, addictions, taboos, beliefs, etc.”
Someone who I exchange sharings about topics related with ego; referred to me to one of the books by Alan Watts, “The Wisdom of Insecurity.”
He said, “I found [it] to be very powerful, especially his statement that experience, I, and the present moment are all the same.”
Do we see the “craziness” of saying that experience, the “I” and the “now” are all the same?
How many people experience that? Do we “experience” all of those things to be the same?
What separates the “I” from the experience? It is obviously a thought. Thinking. Isn’t the experience of the “I” the same as the “now”?
Do we see that there is a Totality, which has been dissected into parts by our wonderful thinking?
Could we see inter-beingness?
There is a huge, enormous difference between “seeing things intellectually” and experiencing them.
Intellectually, we could make sense as when someone describes the flavor of a meal. We could separate the different ingredients of that meal, list the quantities needed of every ingredient and even learn how to cook them using the same temperature and the same timing every single time; however, if our taste buds are unable to taste, then what happens?
Exactly the same as having intellectual understanding and not experience. A meal is meant to be eaten.
It could go down to the stomach or we could taste it, enjoy it… just like life.
Mathias, the wise tree; mentioned to Ananda at one time.
“Knowing comes through contemplation.
When you observe and respect the rhythms of Nature and learn to be part of it, then your movements will be accordingly harmonious. “
Walking, breathing, feeling.
It is in that contemplation of Nature and not in reading books how the intellectual stuff vanishes. With that; our continuous thinking which brings separation.
When you are fully aware that everything is “you” and not just a part, the “I,” or the “soul” all by itself, then that concept will be let go by our own experience of the Totality.
The “Drama of life,” which is the “now” and the experience of that Drama of life are the same. The experiencer, which is the “I” or the soul or some other label cannot be separated from everything else…
Do we see that?
How could we feel alone?
Because that consciousness of Totality hasn’t been experienced or if experienced, it is for a limited time.
It is individuality false, a mirage?
No. It is just another state of consciousness. Someone who could go from one state of consciousness into the other; obviously is not alone when alone.
The experience of Totality brings paradoxically, individuality in Totality. There are so many species of beings with a particular function in the Universe. Individuality will bring Totality as well, once that experience of being an individual cannot be tolerated anymore. In other words, when that “ego” is unbearable. That means suffering.
Collective consciousness is moving at this time into what has been labeled as “Oneness.”
However, we could do the pretty talk or we could experience it …away, in the little corner of silence… or we could experience both.
“Nothing is better than the other…” just different, for the one who appreciates every flavor/ experience that life brings, after all that flavor is “you.” 🙂
“Be in the now.” “Be in the present.”
Those words are trying to explain the experience of “being centered,” that is when the mind is “timeless.”
The “now” is timeless.
Ananda was looking at the Sun just appearing in the horizon. The beauty of a new day was in front on him. Ananda was touched by the experience and thought: “I am enjoying the present, the now.”
Actually, he wasn’t. He just thought that he did. 🙂
Every time thinking appears, then time will appear.
That is known as experiencing the “3 aspects of time.”
In a collective consciousness of individuality, there is a past, a present and a future. Our minds are seldom located in the present, because it cannot be grasped. However, the past is easily grasped when we have the time to “rewind our experiences.” On the same token, we could fantasize with the future. That is how a typical human being uses its idle time, when he is not busy.
That fantasy world of past and future will bring emotions and attitudes. The interesting thing to realize is that both, past and future are non-existent.
“I experienced this before.”
Wrong. It was experienced but it wasn’t the “you” who is there “right now.”
There is no single moment which we can call “now.” We are always becoming. We are not the same at any moment unless, we want to create a prototype in our minds as to “who I am” and “how I behave.”
That type of mental jail will not allow us to open up to life and to new experiences.
We are becoming all the time. There is no destination. Our thoughts provide an artificial world of separation which brings the idea of time.
What is the practical aspect of this realization?
If we have any grudges due to some past experience, we are just taking that heavy weight with us when we try to make alive something, which is gone and that is the memory of a person or persons which do not exist anymore. This is how we sabotage our “present” by bringing that past to fit into a different being: “we” in the “now.”
Notice how when we identify ourselves with our “past self” we make that past alive.
Do we understand that everything changes?
But not practically, because in our minds we still bring the “3 aspects of time.”
The above is very important if we are willing to become free from “our” past. If we just understand that those experiences were experienced by a different being which is not the one living today.
Nevertheless, even though we could understand that nothing is the same, we make that past alive and fantasize about the future.
If there is a psychological past and future, then there is a “now” which cannot be grasped by the mind. The present.
To be timeless is to enter in the realm of the immortals. To be timeless is to experience Totality, which has another name in the consciousness of individuality: Soul consciousness.
This idea of self is truly detrimental once we believe in it. One thing is to relate with this “self” label as when “I” greet someone: “Hello John, how are you doing?” or when in my daily speech “I” need to use the words “I” and “my.”
A different thing is to believe that those words that we use to communicate are indeed “real.”
Note that Avyakt7 is not saying that the idea of “self” is “bad,” our “worst enemy,” or that we need to have “distaste of that idea.” That is childish.
Avyakt7 is using the word “detrimental” not as judgment but as a way to communicate and convey a close but not accurate meaning to Avyakt7’s inner discovery.
“Detrimental” is used as an obstacle, an obstruction to perceive something else.
As mentioned before, please do not take that as the “truth,” for it cannot be communicated with words.
Have you ever taken a stroll in a park or the bay early in the morning with a smiling face? 🙂
Do you know where that smile came from, without a particular reason to smile?
That is when YOU are not there. Notice that the harmonious perception of what is already there in Nature, without any thinking or additional ideas will bring that magic.
To be alive in appreciation means not to think, to have a quiet mind. Silence. Stillness. Emptiness.
Is thinking “bad”? Nope. Thinking has its own place. Thinking is not supposed to be an inner voice in our heads. Thinking is not supposed to bring that separation of the “thinker” and everything else. Unless we believe it.
There is no problem which is truly a problem when we realize that everything is temporary.
That is why that perception of “I” is a mental disease. That “I” needs to go away with his/her ideas. That “I” needs to go away with his/her expectations and illusions.
That “I” must go away… but through thinking, that “I” remains the “same.”
It wants to survive forever… 🙂
That is why any ideas about the afterlife are just ways for that “I” to remain. Those ideas will bring certainty through another thought, through another idea, another belief.
Living is not thinking about the “future” and what could happen next. We live “now.” As it is “now” when we are aware of it.
That is why it is important to be aware of our mind and its games. That is why, it is important to awaken to that “reality.”
God cannot help on this. To clear our minds from that on going “mental garbage” is our own task.
The outcome of that inner cleansing is a frank smile.
Observe your neighbor’s cat lazily stretching in the morning, say hello to “top cat.” Observe the birds chirping their tunes, appreciate that music with your awareness… Move slowly into the day by looking at the trees and perceiving their aroma, notice the sun caressing your skin and the wind massaging your face… as long as there is no YOU in it, “YOU” will appreciate that moment without words. Otherwise, it is just an empty thought.
That is the mystery of being and non-being.
Living “reality” as it is entails that all labeling, all type of reaction towards what is “there” are unnecessary.
If we label something, that becomes a preconception. The extent of that “habit” could be very damaging.
Many innocent people have gone to jail because of that.
“I” am sure that I “saw” something, which never happened. “I” am sure that “I” heard something, which never was said. “I” understood something coming from another in a distorted way, which is all in my head. “I” experience things, which “I” label as “true” which are the working of my own mind.
Those are dreams of a dreamer in the present, based on “habits” from the past.
Re-living the past in our minds is like playing an “old” movie, over and over. We even spend the time to change that movie in different scenarios, the “what if” scenarios, without realizing that this past movie is over. Why re-arrange it?
All of that will not allow us to clear our minds.
Please see that none of this is a belief or a religious story. It is something that we need to be aware of if a higher consciousness is to be experienced. It is inner work based on our own observation.
A religion will say: “Be good. Think good things. Think about God.” Please note that we are not escaping into more ideas, (the idea of being good, thinking good or an idea of my thinking on God) but merely confronting what it is “now” through observation.
This is not an “inner fight,” but just to be clear on what is going on with our own minds.
We have the futuristic dreams as well. These types of dreams are supported by our society. Everyone has a dream about his or her future. “I want to be this and do that 5 years from now.”
Avyakt7 is not saying that to do that is “good or bad,” avyakt7 is merely pointing out what is going on.
Once we “set up” our lives in our minds in that way, we will “approve” of certain things, which are OK to happen to us. Other things will be rejected.
Marriage is a good example. Many have in their head an “ideal” partner in an “ideal” circumstance, in an “ideal” time, etc.
Many times an opportunity is missed because it does not fit what we have in our heads. We forget the heart and more important, we forget to be honest with ourselves, that is to find our “truth” at every moment.
Life moves. To take a side in something means the possibility to acknowledge the validity of the opposite side of things as well.
“First, I will do this and then that and it has to be in that order because I want this thing out of life.”
We call that a goal. Life has its own movement, which may not be the fixation that we have in our minds. “My dream.”
The interesting thing is that there is no mundane “goal” in life that will bring any lasting fulfillment and thus, no goal which is “higher” than anything else.
On the other hand, when we are talking about spirituality and “higher consciousness” as a goal, it is not related with any circumstances around us. Marriage, jobs, duties, social status, economical status are of no consequence when the “goal “is to be aware, conscious or ourselves and what is going on in our minds, to make sense of our lives.
Certainly; tranquility, serenity, calmness will give the appropriate environment for this awareness to take place, but we need to grow into giving “value” to those “commodities” which are important in life so we can see life under a different perspective, with greater consciousness.
Take the time to smell the roses. Take the time to watch the sunset. Take the time to appreciate the moon in a deep night.
Take the time to salute the Sun. Take the time to perceive life, its harmony in the nurturing environment of serenity, before life, the “moment,” moves away.