What is Nonduality
Experience Nonduality via Yoga Nidra
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#1902 - Thursday, August 26, 2004 - Editor: Jerry
Featured is Part 9 of 13 of the review/summary of The Sacred Mirror: Nondual Wisdom and Psychotherapy, edited by John. L. Prendergast, Peter Fenner, and Sheila Krystal. Information about this book is available at http://www.paragonhouse.com/catalog/product_info.php?authors_id=218&products_id=315
It is followed by responses to a post sent to Guru Ratings entitled, "I NEED your help...!"
This Highlights concludes with another installment of In Nonduality Salon.
The Sacred Mirror: Nondual Wisdom and Psychotherapy
Welcoming All That Is: Nonduality, Yoga Nidra, and the Play of Opposites in Psychotherapy by Richard C. Miller
"Yoga Nidra is an ancient tantric Yoga practice that reflects the perspective of Awareness both as the inherent ground of our essential beingness and the container, agent, agency of our healing into the understanding that this is so."
After discussing the origin of Yoga Nidra and his first experiences with it beginning in 1970, Miller discusses Yoga Nidra and psychotherapy:
"Through its straighforward process of attending to naturally occurring experiences of opposites of sensation, emotion, thought, belief, imagery, and identity, it awakens the discriminating insight that every experinece, when fully allowed, is both an expression of as well as a pointer to our underlying nondual Nature. Further, Yoga Nidra affirms that when we abide as That, integration and healing unfold spontaneously, conflict and suffering cease naturally, and freedom is recognized to be our innate disposition."
There are two phases in Yoga Nidra when applied to psychotherapy. There is a constructive phase in which the client becomes a psychological whole capable of processing a life of experiences. It is an integrative phase. The second phase is deconstructive and Yoga Nidra is most useful in this phase, where "the accent is on transcending separative ego-identity and realizing one's inherent spiritual identity as impersonal unitive Awareness."
Yoga Nidra is a 12-step process (variously adapted to suit the needs of the client or student) that deconstructs identification at seven levels: physical body, feeling, senses, emotion, mind, joy and bliss, and the body of the ego-I identity.
"When clients recognize their underlying nature as spacious nonjudging, compassionate, and loving Presence, causeless equanimity emerges. The perfume that arises from this profound insight lingers even as residues of separation remain. With repeated insight, these residues become transparently permeable to the underlying fragrance of Awareness."
This chapter is richly supplemented with descriptions of client experiences that illustrate the principles set forth. Here is a fragment:
"Nicky is lying on the floor with eyes closed encountering sensations of shame and a lack of energy that she experiences daily in her body. I support her in experiencing her feelings without trying to think about or understand them. After a few minutes, I ask her to find sensations that represent their opposites. She remembers a time when she is five years old. She is playing outside, her body full of radiant energy and sparkling vitality. I suggest that she embody these feelings without trying to think about or understand them. After a few minutes I invite Nicky to rotate her attention back and forth between feeling these opposing experiences."
Miller concludes with a statement that, except for the mention of Yoga Nidra, could be a concluding statement for the entire book:
"Self-inquiry deconstructs ego-identity and its miragelike reality, opening the ground for latent nondual Presence to spontaneously flood into the foreground. In this moment clients reclaim their real freedom as unchanging, nondual Presence that is both immanent and transcendent in every moment of life. This is the fulfillment of Yoga Nidra and the completion of psychotherapy."
~ ~ ~
The Sacred Mirror: Nondual Wisdom and Psychotherapy, edited by John J. Prendergast, Peter Fenner, and Sheila Krystal. Information about this book is available at http://www.paragonhouse.com/catalog/product_info.php?authors_id=218&products_id=315
"I NEED your help...!"
from the Guru Ratings list
I have mostly become ...a leaf in the wind ...! , a ship
rudder, ...a soul, ...without guide, ...with NO one in ...Command!
I have been mostly living in ...NOW, which has meant ...living with
no plan, no goal, ...and no responsibility!
...lot of things have changed, few things have been ...Lost! I have
simply watched them pass by ...! ...without making much effort!
My pain, suffering, noise, ...have mostly ceased!
...but, it has not been ...Free! ...and, I haven't `permanently' lost
my Mind, ...I can still Think!
...and, when I think then I realize that I DO have a `real' family to
feed, ...one that loves me dearly and one that depends heavily one
...the family includes two members of ...less than 6 years of Age!
and, ...I do realize that living without plan, goal, agenda,
responsibility, ...living without bother, ...mostly `not thinking' is
NOT a proven method to `ensure' worldly success or ...prosperity.
My question is, ...WHAT do I Do ...?
What would you, ...Do?
For past 8 months, I have performed my job mainly because of
being `pushed' and `pulled' by this and that rather than by
personal `drive', `motivation', `agenda', `plan' and `responsibility'.
It is somewhat of a miracle that I still have my job. But, from a
super start, award winning, highest rated employee, I have reached to
a point where people have started raising doubts on ...why I was
rated so High, why did I get this big role and `responsibility'
and ...why did I win those awards?
...so, my question is ...what Do I Do ...?
and, yes, I think, ...I still have a ...Choice!
But, the real question is to `find a good balance'.
How do I do that ...?
Any idea ...?
Thanks for letting me talk something ...grossly 'practical' and
Your help, understanding, openness, ...and compassion is greatly
~ ~ ~
It matters not what you do. But do it 1000%, lose
yourself in it.
Whatever you resist will persist. ... putting my exec. hat on
for a minute:
Follow your passion dudes, if you need to make a
change go for it, confidence equals competence and
both are simply the result of fears overcome.
I was a banker when I got into heavily into
metaphysics. One day I tossed my speech aside and told
staff about self observation and told them to forget
about selling and start listening. I got called into
the VPs office, instead of getting fired I received
accolades. Six months later I started my first dotcomm
a year after that I became head of consiousness
project in LA that paid triple the salary. Then I
retired to write and study at the age of 35, then I
shaved my head and returned to the corporate world to
be my weird self and get human again.
Be weird man, be yourself, let you light shine, dream
the dream dreamer, the passion is in there somewhere.
Not that I don't have struggles, the biggest is
boredom. Use your mind too though, don't quit until
you've found something else - something BETTER! Or you
may need to resolve some issues you are resisting
where you are and then the movement will happen
Re: goal setting - forget about it, the people that
run this planet did long ago. The key imagining is
simply to get in touch with your deepest darkest
desires and don't lie about it. I've got a brother in
law and he keeps complaining about rich people and
saying how stupid and evil they are and how he isn't
willing to sacrifice his more blah, blah, blah... In
fact he is simply afraid of his power, afraid of his
weakness, afraid of failure and it is actually easier
and more egotistical to say "I could but I won't".
Actually this is just one small part of my
brother-in-law he is actually a pretty cool dude and
has a good life. I just like to rant.
...and why do I spend so much time online? hmmm - i
guess it is part of my becoming human project, so
thanks again for your sharing. I'ld forgotten how much
pain and suffering there is among humans.
One last thing - we need the pain too! It is the only
way our Higher Self can get our attention. First SHe
whispers in our ear, but we can't hear, then SHe rings
a bell, but still we doze, then SHe gives us a nudge,
eventually SHe might have to resort to hitting us with
a car. SHe doesn't care about the car it is no more
real to SHe than a fly so why not.... seems nasty to
us but no big deal from another i.e. immortal POV.
~ ~ ~
>But, the real question is to `find a good balance'.
>How do I do that ...?
>Any idea ...?
By continuing to be open to those "forces" around, like your wife and
daughter and Aditya. Only your intelligence is required to balance needs
harmoniously. Tolle on the park bench is not the only model. Kabir
continued to support himself by weaving and then hanging out in the market
to sell his weavings, long after his disciples asked him to stop, that they
would take care of him and he should be doing more important things, etc.
>Thanks for letting me talk something ...grossly 'practical' and
Nothing wrong with practical. It makes an interesting contrast with your
Do you really need the advice you are seeking or are you just seeing what
we can come up with?
I *have* noticed that your offerings are now more than they used to be, ie
not just on the morning commute any more. So this side of life is taking
more precedence. So, there may be a problem. Or . . . You can cut down on
work, still have some job that is sufficient to do the support thing, just
less high-powered. The guru trade is a tough one, not much room to make a
lot of money, except if you get lucky or sell out in some way. Keeping the
day job is not necessarily selling out.
~ ~ ~
I tell you what I do, what works for me: I make whatever is in
of my nose my meditation, to that I give my full attention. Whether
it is work, talking to my wife, or cutting my toenails it gets my
best shot at being attentive, and doing the job right.
~ ~ ~
we learn commonness and invisibility, recognize when there is
stake, no reason to prove anything, that i am apart, ... one has to
live anyway, there are hours (many of them) in the days, one might
work or stare at the ceiling, all activities are the same, i don't
blame my mind earning some money, maybe earning added value to buy
unnecessary things brings heavy stress, but the mind must do
something anyway, let it be stressed to, like here me communicate,
life fills itself with itself, who can say he stops or decides
anything in the course of his destiny, let it be ... a destiny.
Arvind you life will always be filled anyway with something.
~ ~ ~
>I have mostly become ...a leaf in the wind ...! , a ship
...without rudder, ...a soul,
>...without guide, ...with NO one in ...Command!
The notion that there was something in command has vanished,
that's all. The intestines
will continue to function, as will the senses.
>I have been mostly living in ...NOW, which has meant
...living with no plan, no goal,
>...and no responsibility!
The interesting bit would be where / how to live outside a "now" no?
>...lot of things have changed, few things have been
...Lost! I have simply watched them
>pass by ...! ...without making much effort!
Breathing as a rule is effortless too, so that's quite OK.
When it is costing effort,
that's a sign something isn't well.
>My pain, suffering, noise, ...have mostly ceased!
When injured (little accidents do happen once a while)
disinfect the wound by pouring tea
tree oil into it. No pain? Cool no? 8-)
>...but, it has not been ...Free! ...and, I haven't
`permanently' lost my Mind, ...I can
Thinking is required to solve math and related puzzles.
Defining the mind with the mind
isn't a good idea unless to start a career in philosophy ;-)
>...and, when I think then I realize that I DO have a
`real' family to feed, ...one that
>loves me dearly and one that depends heavily one me. ...the family includes two members
>of ...less than 6 years of Age!
Just keep working, effortlessly, without suffering. The kids
are lucky with such a dad
>and, ...I do realize that living without plan, goal,
agenda, responsibility, ...living
>without bother, ...mostly `not thinking' is NOT a proven method to `ensure' worldly
>success or ...prosperity. My question is, ...WHAT do I Do ...?
As nothing really changed, continue "business as usual". >What would you, ...Do? >Business as usual :-)
>For past 8 months, I have performed my job mainly because
of being `pushed' and `pulled'
>by this and that rather than by personal `drive', `motivation', `agenda', `plan' and
Combined with good job performance, that means "no worries!" aka a happy life.
>It is somewhat of a miracle that I still have my job. But,
from a super start, award
>winning, highest rated employee, I have reached to a point where people have started
>raising doubts on ...why I was rated so High, why did I get this big role and
>`responsibility' and ...why did I win those awards? ...so, my question is ...what Do I Do
An empty mind enables good job performance too so how come this question is raised?
>and, yes, I think, ...I still have a ...Choice! But, the
real question is to `find a good
>balance'. How do I do that ...? Any idea ...?
Unless equipped with the body-multiplication siddhi, one issue at a time.
>Thanks for letting me talk something ...grossly 'practical' and grossly 'Real'.
When the Buddha was roaming in India, many householders
practiced his advice and didn't
change career nor broke with family after attainment of nirvana. The notion that such a
change could be required is incorrect.
>Your help, understanding, openness, ...and compassion is
greatly appreciated. Thanking
It is quite likely ppl living with someone undergoing k.
awakening are put under stress
by that. When the smoke of the k. fires disappears and clear vision arises, could be wise
to repair some of the damage.
In Nonduality Salon
The Highlights of posts from the early days of the Nonduality Salon, before The Highlights came about.
~ ~ ~
" Spiritual life is a crisis... Everything I am doing is
a means to
bring about this crisis. I desire this crisis in you. I don't want it not
to happen. I don't want to console you. I don't want you to be happy in
I want you to become sensitive to your actual state. I want you to know
very well what you are always up to. I want you to become capable of seeing
yourself under all kinds of conditions. I want you to see the machine of
your ordinary activity. And I want it all to collapse. "
--Franklin "Adi Da" Jones
Driftwood Dave and Starwomyn
Keep stripping away that which appears to be until there is no
and nothing there to be as all has merged in to ONE.
Look for the constants. The transitive breaks down and away under stress or
duress of many kinds. Let it go. If it's going then you probably don't need
it anyway. If I can name it or perceive it with the senses then it ain't me
so I can let it go without attachment. Stress factor reduced dramatically.
Nervous breakthroughs achieved regularly if necessary until the dross flys
with wind and finally the rest of me with it.
~ ~ ~
"That which makes you think you are human is not human.
It is but a
dimensionless point of consciousness, a conscious nothing; all you can
say about yourself is: 'I am'. You are pure being, awareness, bliss. To
realize that is the end of all seeking. You come to it when you see all
you think yourself to be as mere imagination and stand aloof in pure
awareness of the transient as transient, imaginary as imaginary, unreal
as unreal." ---Nisargadatta
~ ~ ~
From The Sonnets to Orpheus: II, 29
Rainer Maria Rilke
Silent friend of many distances, feel
how your breath enlarges all of space.
Let your presence ring out like a bell
into the night. What feeds upon your face
grows mighty from the nourishment thus offered.
Move through transformation, out and in.
What is the deepest loss that you have suffered?
If drinking is bitter, change yourself to wine.
In this immeasurable darkness, be the power
that rounds your senses in their magic ring,
the sense of their mysterious encounter.
And if the earthly no longer knows your name,
whisper to the silent earth: I'm flowing.
To the flashing water say: I am.
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