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#3760 - Tuesday, December 29, 2009 - Editor: Jerry Katz

The Nonduality Highlights -    

A couple of blog entries from people describing nonduality. For a list of over a hundred blogs based in nonduality, please visit

Monday, 28 December 2009

So what does nondualism mean?

Hold an arbitary object in front of you, such as a pencil. Are you a pencil? The answer would seem blatantly obvious - of course not. Everything in your experience and understanding tells you that the idea is preposterous. When however you look further into exactly what a pencil is and what you are, deeply disturbing questions arise about the fundamental nature of everything.

I have explored this question and reached a startling conclusion. I am not the first to reach it, in fact countless millions have over millennia. It is no less shocking to any mind brought up in Western culture. There is no doubt in my awareness that everything I am aware of is actually one thing. All that is within awareness is one universal consciousness. This is at first impossible to grasp, meaningless twaddle to common experience, but there is one very good model by which you may understand - that of the dream.

Consider a dream. When you are having a particularly vivid dream, it seems very real at the time. It provokes real emotions that carry into consciousness. For example when you wake from a nightmare, you can wake up feeling terrified. And yet what was the whole experience made of? What were the true nature of the other people and objects in your dream? Clearly they were all simply your consciousness, as separate and physical as they may have felt.

In the same way, whilst apparently wide awake, what are you experiencing right now? On the most fundamental physical level, energy is simply changing form. It is YOUR MIND that is turning it into the experience that you call "your life". What you think is happening is actually far removed from true reality as much as the dreamworld is from the conscious world. This true reality is nondualism, the acceptance that all things are actually one universal consciousness.

As shocking as the implications are, to embrace this truth makes very little immediate impact on your life, any more than waking "reality" affects a dream. You still experience the dream until you wake. In the same way, knowing what you truly are does not stop you experiencing life. What you will get in time is relief, total peace of mind, that no life experience can take from you. If that is attractive, maybe you should explore further. For those who like logical/scientific argument, follow this link
for an excellent beginner's explanation:  

Understanding is of no importance when it comes to Non- Duality. The word Advaita (meaning Not Two, I use Advaita and Non-Duality interchangeably) points to something that is totally beyond understanding. It is a very interesting subject (and the equivalent of watching paint dry for many, if not most), but getting your teeth into it and understanding it and being able to discuss and describe it in an intellectual or intelligent manner is of no relevance what so ever. There are many who are claiming to be liberated and have an enormous intellectual grasp of the topic and clearly there is still a personal agenda, clearly they are still offering something to the individual. The language used is very similar to other uncompromising messages (e.g. there is no one, this is it etc) but there is still something on offer to the individual and the ‘teacher- student’ game is played out, even though the teacher is claiming not to be one.

Non-duality or Advaita then becomes the last refuge of the individual who is under threat. It is fodder for the mind. It becomes the new, best concept in town as it were. There can be a certain clarity that it brings which eases the search for the individual in the sense that it is seen that there is nothing that can be done. That is not liberation however, understanding that there is no separate individual is not liberation as there is (apparently) a separate individual left who understands that. Understanding is seen as king when in fact it has nothing to do with what is in fact being sought. Understanding simply arises in being, is it just another apparent happening. It is of course married to ignorance or confusion. One is dependent on the other for existence.

What is being pointed to has no room for the concept of duality or non-duality/Advaita. It has no room, no space for concept. It is so immediately THIS and so simply and obviously what IS that the Duality - Non Duality debate has as much significance as a leaf scattering along cold concrete. Wholeness arises as confused message and wholeness arises as a clear message.

The juicy sweetness, the boundless freedom of everything, the unconditional love that is This is speaking to you always and is totally beyond understanding. It is already what is, already this. What is being sought is already what is. So simple, so open, so ordinary and also totally beyond any effort to describe its beauty.


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