What is Nonduality
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Nondual Highlights: Issue #2924, Sunday, September 9, 2007
Most of the time we go through the day, through our activities, our work, our relationships, our conversations, and very rarely do we ground ourselves in an awareness of our bodies. We are lost in our thoughts, our feelings, our emotions, our stories, our plans. A very simple guide or check on this state of being lost is to pay attention to those times when you feel like you are rushing. Rushing does not have to do with speed. You can rush moving slowly, and you can rush moving quickly.
We are rushing when we feel as if we are toppling forward. Our minds run ahead of ourselves; they are out there where we want to get to, instead of being settled back in our bodies. The feeling of rushing is good feedback. Whenever we are not present, right then, in that situation, we should stop and take a few deep breaths. Settle into the body again. Feel yourself sitting. Feel the step of a walk. Be in your body.
The Buddha made a very powerful statement about this; "Mindfulness of the body leads to nirvana." Such awareness is not a superficial practice. Mindfulness of the body keeps us present.
- Joseph Goldstein, from Transforming the Mind, Healing the World, posted to The_Now2
A man who is given a stone and assured that it is a priceless diamond will be mightily pleased until he realizes his mistake; in the same way pleasures lose their tang and pains their barb when the self is known. Both are seen as they are--conditional responses, mere reactions, plain attractions and repulsions, based on memories or preconceptions. Usually pleasure and pain are experienced when expected. It is all a matter of acquired habits and convictions.
- Nisargadatta Maharaj, posted to ANetofJewels
Imagine walking along a sidewalk with your arms full of groceries, and someone roughly bumps into you so that you fall and your groceries are strewn over the ground.
As you rise up from the puddle of broken eggs and tomato juice, you are ready to shout out, "You idiot! What's wrong with you? Are you blind?" But just before you can catch your breath to speak, you see that the person who bumped you is actually blind. He, too, is sprawled in the spilled groceries, and your anger vanishes in an instant, to be replaced by sympathetic concern: "Are you hurt? Can I help you up?"
Our situation is like that. When we clearly realize that the source of disharmony and misery in the world is ignorance, we can open the door of wisdom and compassion. Then we are in a position to heal ourselves and others.
- B. Allan Wallace, from Tibetan Buddhism from the Ground Up, posted to The_Now 2
You are not what you think you are. Stop paying attention to your thoughts and find out who you really are. When you stop paying attention to your thoughts, the stories, feelings, and activity driven by them stop. Then you can discover what is arising out of the flow - what is true to do now, in this moment. That is all you need to know. Pay attention to now, and the rest will take care of itself.
- Gina Lake
Call Off the Struggle
Most people are in a constant state of struggle with themselves. Tremendously burdened by the past and in constant anticipation of the future, most human beings are rarely able to be fully present for more than very brief moments. The tremendous openness and intimacy that is required to be fully present is beyond most people's ability to sustain for more than a few moments before they habitually contract back into the familiar condition of separateness and struggle that so characterizes the human condition. This constant state of struggle manifests as a compulsive and addictive relationship to the movement of thought, emotion, and time.
There is great reluctance to stop struggling because in the absence of struggle you suddenly begin to lose your boundaries and definitions of who you are. For many people this causes fear to arise as they experience the loss of their familiar sense of self. Struggling is how the ego-personality maintains its existence. When you cease to struggle, identification with the personality begins to break down and you become aware of your emptiness and lack of boundaries.
The most difficult thing for spiritual seekers to do is to stop struggling, striving, seeking, and searching. Why? Because in the absence of struggle you don't know who you are; you lose your boundaries, you lose your separateness, you lose your specialness, you lose the dream you have lived all your life. Eventually you lose everything that your mind has created and awaken to who you truly are: the fullness of freedom, unbound by any identifications, identities, or boundaries.
It is this locationless freedom of being that spiritual people are seeking, and at the same time are running away from because its faceless nature gives no fixed reference point for the personality to hold onto or to seek security in. As long as you remain identified with the personality, you will always be seeking security to the exclusion of the Truth, and will remain in a constant state of struggle. It is only when your love and desire for Truth outweigh the personality's compulsive need for security that you can begin to stop struggling and be swept up into the arms of an ever-unfolding revelation of the Truth and Freedom of Being.
So, plunge into the truth,
Find out who the teacher is,
Believe in the great Sound!
Kabir says this...
The idea that the soul will join with the ecstatic
just because the body is rotten (dies) ...
is all fantasy.
What is found now - is found then.
The guest is inside you,
and also inside me;
you know the sprout is hidden inside the seed.
We are all struggling; none of us has gone far.
Let your arrogance go, and look around inside ...
A million suns come forward with Light,
when I sit firmly in that world.
I hear bells ringing that no one has shaken,
inside love there is more joy than we know of,
Rain pours down, although the sky is clear of clouds,
there are whole rivers of Light.
The universe is shot through in all parts
by a single sort of love.
- Kabir, from The Kabir Book, translated by Robert Bly, posted to Mystic_Spirit
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