What is Nonduality
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Issue #1475 - Friday, June 27, 2003 - Editor: Jerry
God is not a being, he is an aspiration, a gift, a vision, a
goal to seek. Ours is the responsibility of making a cruel
universe turn just, of turning pains to understandings and new
insights into joy, of creating ways to soar the skies for
generations yet to come, of fashioning wings with which our
childrens children shall overcome, of making worlds of
fantasy materialize as reality, of mining and transforming our
greatest gifts--our passions, our imaginings, our pains, our
insecurities, and our lusts. This is the work of deity, and
deity is a power that resides in us. -- Howard Bloom
I Am list
Question: But is God really the doer of all
the actions I perform?
Sri Ramana Maharshi: The present difficulty is that man thinks he is
the doer. But it is a mistake. It is the higher power, which does
everything, and man is only a tool. If he accepts that position he is
free from troubles, otherwise he courts them.
Take for instance, the sculpted figure at the base of a Gopuram
(temple tower), which is made to appear as if it is bearing the
burden of the tower on its shoulder. Its posture and look are a
picture of great strain, which gives the impression that it is
bearing the weight of the tower. But think. The tower is built on the
earth and it rests on its foundations. The figure is a part of the
tower, but it is made to look as if it is bearing the weight of the
tower. Is it not funny? So also is the man who takes on himself the
sense of doing.
NDS (contributed by Kristi Shelloner)
Up! up! my Friend, and quit your books
Or surely you'll grow double:
Up! up! my Friend, and clear your looks;
Why all this toil and trouble?
The sun, above the mountain's head, A freshening lustre mellow
through all the long green fields has spread
His first sweet evening yellow.
Books! tis a dull and endless stife: Come, hear the woodland linnet
How sweet his music! on my life, there's more of wisdom in it.
Sweet is the lore which Nature brings
our meddling intellect/mis-shapes the beauteous form of things
we murder to dissect.
Enough of Science and of Art
Close up those barren leaves
come forth, and bring with you a heart
That watches and receives.
Excerpt from his newsletter ('Spoilers' deleted)
As Spiritual Cinema, and as powerfully as any film in recent
memory in this
genre, WHALE RIDER is a metaphor for the majesty of this epoch into which we
have all chosen to be born.
For several months now, I've been hearing glowing, magical reports from our
Spiritual Cinema Communities in Australia and New Zealand about WHALE RIDER.
and, now having seen the film, there is no question that our friends "down
under" certainly know brilliance when they see it. Please go see WHALE RIDER. Tell
your friends about it. Spread the word that a film is out there amid the
clutter of summer sequels and action franchises that truly illuminates the very
soul of Spiritual Cinema.
As the early days of this new millennium unfold, old traditions are changing
and outdated belief systems are being challenged and dismantled. Engrained
ways of thinking and responding to each other and the world around us are being
confronted by courageous souls such as Pai and, as a result, our world is
evolving and reaching up its arms to the approaching dawn of that new paradigm
whose light bathes our faces in the reflection of the wisdom of such films as
Stone collectors staircase -- photo by Al Larus (NDS)
my neighbors must walk a 17th century wooden staircase to go to their
appartment and they repeadly complained that it is going to collapse;
but your stone staircase will be still standing in the ruins of the
house, long after the pyramids --Eric Paroissien
(contributed to NDS by Jan Sultan)
Sandeep speaks to Ravi:
Let's assume your name is Ravi and let us see whether an
apperception of what is the case is possible.
For that a good place to start is at the beginning, isn't it?
It's a different matter that there is no beginning, but let's
take for the moment, the beginning of Ravi to be,.. when a
sperm raced to engage in a hip-hop with a coy ovum,
.....succeeded .......and hey presto a unique DNA-gene
template was formed.
That unique DNA-gene template, was a the end-result of the
genetic contributions coming from both the sperm and the ovum
and since the sperm and ovum themselves are the culmination of
another hip-hop, at another point of time and that of another
further back in time,......
..........I trust you can see that the body-mind complex, the
psycho-somatic 3 D object, reading this post on his PC
........is a culmination of eternity itself,
.........expressed as "so".
Now this gene-template which was formed, just like a
particular "wave" appears to be formed out of the Ocean
(appears, not real),...........
...this gene-template, through a mysterious intelligence of
it's own, of such mind-boggling proportions, (can you imagine
the unimaginable complexity that is involved in making your
nose to that precise shape it is, or the color of your eyes,
or in the manufacture of that lovely shaped kidneys inside
you, or to run the neurological system which allows you to
read this post and maybe make some sense) ........
............through that mysterious Grace, the gene-template
reaches fruitation and screaming, yelling it's spewed out.
The Big-Bang, in it's miniature form.
The gene-template, continues to grow psycho-somatically.
And during this nurturance stage, the gene-template continues
to be impacted by conditioning-inputs from the external
environ, which shape it, alter it, amend it, evolve it.
What are these impacting inputs?
Parental dictates from their own conditioning,
........prevailing environ in the home, ...
......experiences both in home and outside, both the
ones and the "horrible" ones, .....
.....education or lack of one, .....
....social/religious/spiritual/communal/nation ethos which was
prevailing in the immediate environ in which the nurturing was
taking place, ......
....influences by media, friends, accepted icons of
authority/trust,..........etc etc etc.
Each and every one impacts that gene-template, even now
continues to, to form what is the prevailing, intrinsic innate
Now this conditioning-in-the-moment is not something which is
etched in stone, sometime in some Dark Ages.
The arriving input, alters the existing conditioning AND the
fashioned response once again alters the conditioning, in the
very process itself.
(You would have definitely had moments, when moved by the
situation, something got done through Ravi, which he would
have never dreamed to be ever doing in the past)
It's like a dynamic loop.
A Yin-Yang dance.
That is why the term conditioning-in-the-moment, and not
conditioning which connotes something static etchings in Dark
Which is what "runs" the psycho-somatic object.
By "runs it", I don't mean the biological functions
carry on quite irrespective of "you", but really the way Ravi
views the world, how he creates a mental image of the input
that arrives from the world (i.e. an E mail, or a sexual
assault), .........and how a response arises TO that
self-created image of that input.
Remember Ravi's response is never to the external input per
se, but to Ravi's created image of that input, both the
creating and the responding, "fashioned" by the
Now, we have been using this convention of a "Ravi",
an image, responding etc etc, as if there is an independent
self, apart from the body-mind complex.
There is nothing like "Ravi" in the psycho-somatic
know by society as "Ravi".
Just a notion, which feels so real, so real, that it has
"real" problems, "real" issues, ........it suffers, grieves,
gets angry, screams at the injustice of "his" Life.
It is completely hilarious, but till the hilarity has bubbled
up, ..........it's like a continuous sinking in deep shit.
So how does this notion appear to come about?
What you see around are conditioned responsive psycho-somatic
objects, whether they are labeled "an interesting rock-piece",
..........."the Petunia Rose", ..........or an " orange assed
orangutan" .......or a "human".
Psycho-somatic objects with varying attributes.
The real attribute which vary among all the species is the
attribute of sentience, which is the ability to cognize an
"other" separate to yourself and create a mental image of that
"other",..... to be then responded to.
In the objects labeled "humans" sentience is at the
With that relatively maximum sentience, the human object, has
further embedded flavours, which is the intellect, i.e. the
ability to discriminate between all the cognized "others".
The discrimination of sentience itself which is also present
to a limited extent in an animal, which can discriminate
between a "friendly/safe" other and an "other" which poses
In the cognition of the other, and in the discrimination
inter-alia all these "others", is born the sense of the
The subject which observes it's objects of cognition.
Thus is the sense of the individual self, which is nothing but
an identification with a particular biological body-mind
object as a separated object from all other objects.......
.......the identification to the name which that particular
biological body-mind object carries.
(You Ravi do not feed your sister's body-mind apparatus, when
you note hunger pangs in "your" apparatus, do
you?.........When her boyfriend calls for her by her name, you
dont' respond, do you?)
This self, or this identification does not come at birth, but
some time in the first 3 years.
Notice an infant, falling down, will cry "It hurts",
not "I am
The sense of the self, has not yet appeared.
Now in this sense of the separated individual self, arrives
another flavour, the sense of personal doership.
The sense which is made up of strands like...
It is me, which thinks, it is me which
It is me, which acts on the decision made.
It is me, which succeeds with the action towards again a
self-conceived objective/goal and hence me is joyous, the
world is a beautiful expression of God Almighty.
It is me which fails with the action opposite that
self-conceived objective/goal and Life/God/everybody sucks.
The concretization of these strands, makes up the "me".
Which remains a notion.
Go to search for the "me",....... to kick it's
infernal ass to
oblivion, you will not find it.
But there are feelings of suffering, or elation, of agonizing,
of fearing, of being insecure ,anxiousness.......
......it is these feelings which infer a "me",.....
Now comes along all these spiritual Gurus who says, you have
to have mindless observation, witness, don't get attached,
etc, without ever explaining what the hell they are talking
Impacting input--->created image by
response,............is going on, in the moment.
Moment to moment to moment.
Whether you are ruddy "sage" or a
"regular-Joe-at-the-corner-pub" or a dog peeing on a red
Observing this functioning,..... from behind a cocoon of an
agenda of the "me" (made up by the thousands of "this should
happen", "that should not happen") .........is being
identified with the functioning.
For obviously with an agenda, you will either be,..... joyous
in the moment and next moment you will be pissed of,
.........one moment you see Life as a bed of roses, another
moment that same Life is a cesspool filled with sexual
Sometimes, in a particular moment .........all of a sudden,
.......non-volitionally, acasually,.....even this agenda "gets
seen" for what it is,
This seeing is without an agenda,...........ie. there is no
"Oh Shit, the existing agenda is bad,...Ravi is such an
horrible person for doing this, thinking this, lusting
such,... etc etc.... .... or it is "good", aka I am on a spiritual seeking
band-wagon,I have realized, I have attained, I am enlightened,
why can't everybody see/acknolewdge the surrounding halo, etc
Nothing of all that.
Just a gestalt of indifferent observing of the
functioning,....... which is anyway happening through a
psycho-somatic apparatus, through an instrument
the indifference observing of the antics of the
with that functioning in the moment.
This gestalt of observing, which obviously a "me"
do,because there is no existing agenda.. ....which happens sometimes, in the moment,
................when it is prevailing moment to moment to
moment to moment,.... ....is the witnessing gestalt.
Which also witnesses the functioning and the antics through
the various cognized "other-apparatuses" around it,.... as it
does the functioning through "it's" apparatus.
There is no difference between "one own's" apparatus
apparatus of the neighbour.
And a click...............the apperception happens that it is
the SAME impersonal functioning, which is running all objects,
all apparatuses, whether it is the Milky Way or a struggling
ant, ........whether it is a rock functioning in stillness, or
the frenzy of the human object labeled "Ravi".
Same, just like the electricty which runs through a revolving
fan, a heating coil, the TV set, the refrigerator, the
The same animating energy-in-vibration, which "runs"
so uniquley different apparatuses.
And in the case of Totality, ...........apart from running
them, .....is ALSO the very apparatuses, ...."so" expressed.
The objective expressions of the electricity,.......... is the
vibrator and the refrigerator, whose subjective essence is the
animating energy. Now reading these squiggly signs on a PC screen,.........the
me-Ravi immediately jumps up and asks who is doing that
witnessing in the witnessing gestalt.
All questions of a "who", only arise to a "me" . The answer is extraordinary simple.
Use any term for the "who" Bozo the Clown is as good a term as Consciousness.
Each manifest "object", whether a silly stone lying
rain, or a struggling artist desperately anguishing to express
THAT painting, .....
.....whether a clerk in an organization, or one which popular
media has labeled as a "sage", ...
......whether a humping cat on a tin-roof or an exploding
Super-Nova with the brilliance of a million suns...
.....each is a singing, ..............being uniquely sung.
You are not a person Ravi.
There are no persons as static discrete events.
You are a "particular" process, getting enacted out.
There are no static discrete events.
There is a seamless "eventing", .........with
all of which mesh together in a fantastic harmony,......... to
produce a symphony of infinite proportions.
And since the eluding of this seamless symphonic mosaic,
..........has occurred as a very nuance of the same seamless
.....the eluding can only be ........
i may seem asleep
yet i ever am awake
all abodes of bliss
wherever life's journey goes
i am at the core of it
--Jan Barendrecht (NDS)
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What is Nonduality
Experience Nonduality via Yoga Nidra
Starting February 1, 2018, Nonduality.com will operated by James Traverse.