The Crown Jewel of Relationships

The teacher’s goal is to reassure and clear any doubts about the existence of the Absolute; and point to and set the seeker on the path that leads straight to It.

The parent reassures the child that they are safe. The spouse reassures their partner that they are loved.

Do not be that person who stands aloof, and moves away from pain. Instead, deeply and profoundly lean into your experiences in spite of the intense desire to close the heart in the face of fear, anger, and total annihilation of one’s pride.

Reassure darkness that there is light. Reassure pain that there is healing; and reassure anger that there is compassion. In doing so, Grace will reassure you that in spite of whatever happens in your life; you are taken care of and indestructible trust is finally restored.

Question: “How does one break the addictive bond to the thinking mind that runs on constantly?”

It is not about changing the mind to look a certain way, rather it is a surrender so deep and profound that you allow it to exist in its own right along its own line and space.

Like living with a TV on that blares incessantly, plays provocative programming, and cannot be shut off. The only way is to completely abandon your obsession with changing it, listening to it, watching, fighting, and hating it.

Then you will see that the noise drops to the background and your primary experience becomes the vastness that contains thinking and all other phenomenon.

Contemplative Thought

Like a deep pool of water, one can see great depths according to the stillness of the surface. Likewise, when the mind is still it is possible to see great depths into one’s own heart; revealing the very source of existence.

-Atreya Thomas

Contemplative Thought

The whole point of discerning the ego from the true self is so a seeker can rediscover their eternal nature, and come back to the front of their body and fearlessly embody the ego.

Then one is not afraid anymore to fully embrace and meet the dark side of humanity knowing that ultimately they are not humanity, but rather love itself.

-Atreya Thomas

QUESTION: “WHY DO SOME TEACHERS OR YOGIS HAVE SUCH DIFFERENT PERSONALITIES? SOMETIMES VERY UNORTHODOX, SELFISH AND MEAN, ETC. YET THEY EXPOUND UNDENIABLE TRUTHS. WHO IS THE BEST THEN?”

Some teachers are lustful, others irritable. Some seem arrogant, while others are combative. Still others are sunk in devotion, some keep and uphold sacred scripture, while others seem to live a perfectly normal life. There is even a story of an ancient yogi whose grace increased every time he cursed someone.

This is due to the fact that awakening happens on many different levels.

All these teachers have tapped into the inner oracle of divine wisdom. This inner oracle is not dependent on outward conditions or personal predispositions; and once discovered is never lost in spite of personal “karma.” So the Yogi does not feel the need to get rid of these things; as they know themselves in spite of mind/body; so any effort seems pointless; as there is no fear of themselves anymore, therefore no motivation to change anything.

Nevertheless, the very best awaken emotionally, psychologically, spiritually, physically, and intellectually. They demand of themselves to be on the cutting edge of evolution at all times, which requires awakening on all levels. This desire for perfection is due to a personal predisposition that will not be burned up easily, as they are resolved on serving the Lord Supreme in every act, gesture, word, and breath; while completely embodying their human nature.

Human life is becoming increasingly more dynamic where it is required to awaken on all levels; as people are waking up in families, positions of power, and within deep interwoven relationships.

QUESTION: “THERE IS ONLY ONENESS. WHAT IS THE POINT OF ALL THIS EGO TALK FROM TEACHERS? THERE IS NO EGO OR FALSE SELF, ONLY THE TRUE SELF!”

The word “ego” symbolizes eternal unchanging awareness mistakenly identifying with ever changing form (mainly body and mind), which creates an exclusive “me” whose reality is based in separation. In turn, preservation of “mine,” my demands, my ideology, expectations, happiness etc.; becomes the primary focus.

Everything that challenges these positions becomes “them,” and suffering ensues. One need not look very long at their own life to see the extraordinary damage this thing does to human relationships; and to deny that is a grave mistake.

The whole point of discerning the ego from the true self is so a seeker can rediscover their eternal nature, and come back to the front of their body and fearlessly embody the ego. Then one is not afraid anymore to fully embrace and meet the dark side of humanity knowing that ultimately they are not humanity, but rather love itself.

As this Love, fully embody the false self. Wear it completely! Then offer it as a living sacrifice to truth. Then you will discover the true meaning of Oneness

QUESTION: “HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE SPIRITUAL AWAKENING?”

Awakening can be defined as a fundamental transformation or dissolution of the exclusive “me” that has its identity in “I am the body and mind,” to a non-exclusive awareness that simultaneously sees itself in all things, times and places without a second of differentiation.

Just like the sunlight does not need to be achieved as it is there ever-shining, awakening is your true nature and does not need to be achieved. What does need to be achieved and does take effort is the removal of the curtain that obstructs the sunlight.

The only prerequisite for this removal is an earnest and unwavering devotion to discover something that is eternal, everlasting, complementary to all, unchanging, and final. This brings down grace which removes the veil. The intensity of devotion and perseverance determines the pace.

DIVERSITY IS NOT AN OBSTACLE TO ONENESS

Duality is the dynamic aspect of the non-dual, or Final Cause. Inseparable, like the mirror and its images. Yet the former remains unchanged and the latter stays in a constant state of flux.

If you try to love all things you will come up short. Rather, fall in love with the source of all things and you will see your Beloved in the midst of all human activity and emotion. From the most pleasurable to the most painful. In deep anxiety and in deep joy.

Unless a seeker is able to live a normal life and credit all phenomenon to the Final Cause it can’t be said that the supreme goal is reached.

The Impenetrable Fortress Within

Peace does not mean comfort. Rather, a discovery of the Impenetrable Fortress Within that exists in spite of mind/body conditions.

This does not mean the denial of mind/body phenomenon. On the contrary, it means a final release of the obsession to control them. A surrender so profound, all that is left is a living vessel brimming with the glow of the Unknown.

Question: Atreya, What is the truth about karma and can I be free from it?

It is not about rearranging or changing mind/body conditions in order to get rid of karma. Rather it is more about discovering the Unchanging Self in the midst of all circumstance. Which brings the realization that you have no absolute connection to any type of karma.

When we think of karma we think about the quality of our experiences. These experiences are always associated with the mind and body. In body: I experience comfort, pleasure, fulfillment of desires, equilibrium, and spiritual accolades. In mind, I perceive nice, creative, encouraging and supportive thoughts. We call this good karma.

When the body experiences discomfort, illness, misfortune, or the mind is frustrated in its fulfillment of desires and bombarded with unwanted thoughts, we call this bad karma.
So karma becomes a very big deal because our whole identity and happiness is based on sustaining specific body conditions and the exclusive content in the mind. Together these two form “who I am.”

As long as the “exclusive me” is our primary experience, we will continue to invest in and give continuity to it. In turn, the concept of karma will continue as to define and symbolize our experience of masquerading as a mind/body, and to give a framework for the rollercoaster effects of the compulsion to preserve “this” and avoid “that;” as well as the strife to experience pleasure while avoiding pain.

What is the true meaning of prayer?

The meaning of prayer changes according to one’s proximity to the Source. When we are born we are identified with the body and with the thinking mind. The marriage of these two create the exclusive me, or ego that feels its abiding state to be a sense of separation. After experiencing conflict due to this state of separation; one may intuit, be told about, read about etc. the idea that there may be a higher power, an all encompassing source that has complete sovereignty.

If this idea is accepted, now this “me” begins to petition this source for the fulfillment of thought. This is right as the petitioner is still identified with form (mainly body and mind), so seeks happiness or God in form. More things, smoother life, fulfillment of desires, healthy body, protect my family and attachments etc.

If one begins to see the futility of seeking permanent happiness in transient things, then the prayer mentioned above is transformed into inquiry: Can I be happy whatever mind/body conditions may be present? The seeker is still asking for something but now holds a major responsibility in the process and must do the work.

If one relentlessly perseveres, they realize that it is “me” that holds onto and obsesses over mind/body conditions. Prayer inquiry then mutates into deep surrender and devotion to That Which Exists in Spite of Me.

This eventually unites the seeker with the Source, which then life is experienced as God interacting with God. Then prayer becomes an endless experience of grace.

Question: Do we have any control over our experiences or are we watching a divine script?

Consider a parent and a child: The parent gives the feeling to the child that they have many choices, but in actuality every choice was created by the parent who is in complete control. The child is under the illusion of free will, in that there appears to be many independent choices. Nevertheless, each option was already decided for him and is only meant for their growth-some harsh and some soft. Some to teach the individual and some to teach the whole of mankind-some to allow pain some to allow pleasure. The individual chooses their path according to their own temperament and predispositions.

In the end, every choice leads to the dissolution of the “me” or ego, and acts as a catalyst to reveal The One Observer of Phenomenon; either through pain that leads to surrender, or self-knowledge that leads to an “aha.” Hence, breaking down the sense of individuality or “me;” and re-emerging as the identity of the One Eternal Cause that abides in all things, times and places.

The script is Reality, which there is only One. The pace which all doubts are satisfied and the illusion of diversity is removed; is determined by the intensity which one turns inward.

 

A Complete Human Being

Be a complete human being.

All that means is to meet yourself completely and wholly every moment.

This does not mean try and understand.

Rather, be the whole moment whatever it is, without any differentiation or fragmentation.

Be the totality of humanity and allow for it. Yet, stay away from being anything exclusive.

Then, whatever you come in contact with whether it is anger, fear, depression, anxiety,

shame and guilt, you meet so fully and completely; that it becomes integrated as Love.

I really want to be a spiritual teacher. I just do not have the words like you do. What do you suggest?

The truth is everybody is a teacher. Your inner environment is constantly being projected outward and without a doubt, people feel that both consciously and unconsciously. The best teacher merely acts as a keyhole to view eternity through, as they have forfeited any allegiance to an exclusive me. This gives the student a glimpse of their true nature, which then ignites a fire within them to seek that out in themselves as a permanent condition.

Therefore, it is not the words that create a teacher, but rather the concept-free space which they permanently reside in that reveals the Absolute for any seeker who is willing to look with an open mind and heart.

My suggestion is to loosen your grip on mind activity (which includes trying to “be something”), and let them go on without interfering or concern. Emptiness is not getting rid of anything. Let body business be body business, and mind business be mind business. Therefore, not your business. Allow all states to go on by the force of their own nature.
Then, one sinks into the Underlying Intelligence that is always on time, has the right words, and brings balance spontaneously to all situations.

What is the need for a seeker to interact with a teacher in physical proximity? Some teachers say that a guru is necessary for silent transmission. What do you think?

There is only one guru, and It is within you. All things are born from, created by, and die back into the Innermost Lord of All, which resides in all things, times and places; therefore is always present. Surely, silence is all around you and therefore transmission will take place as soon as the mind becomes empty so ready to be filled.

Your devotion to not grasp the objects of the mind brings down the grace that imparts perfect knowledge. Sometimes this will manifest as a physical teacher and sometimes not. Nevertheless, all great understanding is done when an individual reaches into the inner dark and retrieves light. With all the energy you can invoke, mount the seat of devotion, and snap the reigns of inquiry; and like a laser dive inward!

Question: Atreya. What happens when you die?

Who is this “I” that dies? Clearly when we think of death, we think of the body as lifeless and devoid of a thinking mind. So it is two-fold: a body and a mind. But who is this “I” that says, “I have a body and a mind, and I can see that they die?” There is a third here, an awareness that is present in spite of mind-body. There are many notions about what happens when you die; these ideas are mind based, hence can only exist while there is a mind present- but we want to find out what happens when the mind dies.

So, for the devotee who wishes to discover death; they must give up both the mind and the body by staying fixed in non-conceptual awareness. In other words, to be aware without driving the mind towards any object either conceptual or physical, while allowing them to exist unimpeded.

The prerequisite is that one earnestly and relentlessly seeks the strength to willing give up the impulse to grasp the objects of the mind as they arise. My desires, my demands and dreams, my hopes, my family, my wealth, my status, my religion, and my ideology-the mechanism that demands preservation of an exclusive “me.” When this exclusive entity drops away, identification with the body goes also.

Then, you will find out what happens when “you” die. This experience is brought down by grace alone which is equivalent to one’s devotion. One must even give up the concept of giving up this or that. This state is Intense Un-manifested Awareness, Death, or God.

Question: Is it possible to be free of fear once and for all?

As long as a feeling of separation subsists, there is always going to be dualism. That which is separate stands apart, therefore can always be lost. Hence, fear will always exist where there is duality. We are born with the precondition that I am my body, and I am my mind, or I am form. Form is constantly breaking down and decaying, so we feel “I am” decaying. The body malfunctions and thoughts of who I am, my beliefs, demands, and mental positions; are increasingly challenged over time.

Here, we are cut off from the realization of our eternal nature and completely identified with the process of decay. Therefore, we suffer with fear believing we are going to lose our life (body and mind) at some point.

This base-line illusion of separation between the transient and the eternal is the root of all fear. Therefore, the only way to be free from fear once and for all, would be to experientially exist in spite of mind and body without a second of doubt.

Inquiry into this notion puts a seeker in proximity to their eternal nature, which is intuited but remains elusive. This intuition is enough to establish a deep reverence and love for It as worship being the proper function of duality; which then finally pulls down the grace that solves the riddle of the oneness between the transient and the eternal; destroying all separation forever.

On Peace and Freedom

Most view freedom as being free from some “thing,” and once I am free there will be peace. If I can just get rid of this and retain that; I will be happy. This is a natural way to perceive life because in the beginning as children, we are completely identified with form (body and mind). The very nature of form is duality: growth and decay, pain and pleasure, birth and death. So it seems fitting that freedom is trying to rearrange form; our inner thoughts and outer circumstance in order to achieve peace.

If we look a little bit deeper, it becomes evident that peace attained in the manner above is always fleeting, as circumstances continually change and challenge the consistency of our experience. Granted, if we had enough resources to experience something new each day and throw money at our anxieties, we may be able to dodge and elude the pain that comes with the reality of un-fulfillment. Even that is not a sure way, as there are many examples of people that “have it all” and cannot derive a consistent peace from it.

But can we really call this freedom and peace? If it is here today and gone tomorrow, and needs to be always maintained through an effort to retain and reject? This leads to aggression, separatism, and the desire to protect at all costs.

How can this be the freedom and peace that loves unconditionally and sees Spirit in all things, yet is based on conditions? This is the most difficult thing because it is the accepted norm to “go get it, make yourself happy, fight for what you want, be a winner, and your entitled to defend against ‘them’ who want to take it from you.”

One must stand completely and utterly alone internally while letting your outer life go on unimpeded, and turn away from seeking peace through things and inquire: Who am I in spite of thought and the fulfillment of body sensations? Only then does one stand a chance to discover the Impenetrable Fortress Within, that is your true nature and is peace itself not dependent on outer or inner phenomenon.

Question: Why does there seem to be so many different teachings, spiritual paths etc.? What puts a seeker on the path and what determines the uniqueness?

What makes up the trajectory for the different teachings and modes of learning on the spiritual path is the movement from the outer to the inner. What acts as a catalyst to start one on the path, is the experience of conflict. This conflict is often first seen outwardly among things, people, relationships etc. when we are young. As one keeps on looking it is revealed that this conflict is also manifesting inwardly and serves as the cause for the outer.

There is a sense of urgency that fuels a person once one sees the immensity of this conflict. From here, one may ask is it possible to be free of conflict internally, while navigating an outer world where pain seems like the norm. Thus, the spiritual seeker is born.

This starts to draw the aspirant inward. This journey from the outer to the inner most center, makes up the innumerable parts of the path and manifests according to an individual’s personal predispositions. These dispositions are what create the diversity of temperaments, and serve as the obstructions that guard the gate to Grace. Nevertheless, these temperaments are not unique as they are a result of the collective human consciousness, and manifest individually as ego.

Question: Atreya, what is free will and what is its purpose?

Free will is the intention of awareness that has the whole force of the universe behind it. When awareness is identified with form, it puts its force behind the preservation of bodies and thoughts. In this state there is an exclusive “me” that feels it has many choices, paths, options, worries, and decisions to make.

Sometimes the persona drops away for second and there is a glimpse of our true nature-pure awareness as the observer of the “me.” This can happen through many different avenues-an experience that takes our breath away or “mind away.” Something beautiful, or something painful.

On rare occasions, the “me” becomes absolutely one-pointed and obsessed with using its free will to discover that state as a permanent condition. Free will then turns into intense inquiry, which leads to deep surrender, which leads to the annihilation of free will itself. Leaving all that is left: Intense Un-manifested Awareness.

Actions are still performed in this state, and from the outside a person may look completely normal “like everyone else.” But on the inside there is nothing but concept-free space; and actions are performed spontaneously without any sense of doer-ship or attachment to the outcome. It is like falling asleep on a plane and arriving at your destination hours later without feeling any connection to the many actions that took place to get you there. There is no center that cares whether it arrives or the whole thing goes up in flames. Consciousness is always home and has no exclusive connection to the mind or body.

Atreya Thomas

Question: So many times I have heard teachers say that pleasure is not happiness. How could this be? I am very happy when experiencing pleasure! What do you think Atreya?

Happiness is your true nature; as your true-self is unchanging and unaffected by sense phenomenon, hence always in a state of bliss. When the mind goes out through the senses it experiences objects through taste, touch, etc. When we experience pleasure, we are actually experiencing the bliss of the true-self. When a person becomes fulfilled, the mind becomes quiet for that moment. It is this stillness in thought that allows for the mind to retract and return to its source. Therefore, it is not the object at all that is the cause for happiness, but rather the quietness of mind that comes with fulfillment.

So the great illusion is this: that the object of pleasure is the cause for happiness. In reality, it is the cessation of thought in the moment of fulfillment that allows us to experience happiness, bliss, love.

A little more investigation into the matter will reveal that the nature of all true spiritual teachings is to break the illusion of happiness through objects-conceptual (thought) and physical (body senses). Thus, placing the seeker back on the natural organic throne of eternal bliss!

Question: What path is best to expedite my awakening? I practice yoga, read a lot etc. Thanks a lot!

The yoga of exclusive devotion is the straightforward path. To go directly to the Final Cause of All and create a secret love relationship with that source. At first we infer it through its effects. Just like the wind in the trees, we cannot see it but we can infer its existence by the swaying of the tree.

Then, we solely devote our self to surrendering every action, every thought and every sensation to that subtle Cause that still remains elusive. The intensity of devotion to empty oneself and surrender one’s personal will determines the pace towards the revelation and the descending of grace. Which unites the individual with the One.

Question: How does one navigate “conscious” dating and relationships while remaining on the spiritual “path?”

Consciousness in relationship is to be in relationship with the Source within that person, while discarding the details of his or her personality. Everything we want is normally along an exclusive line as we have demands and expectations, repulsions and desires.

Bend your love towards the Lord of All; and it will not be the person you love but the Lord within them. This is perfect relationship without a “me” that by design creates struggles and suffering.

When you sacrifice your personality to the Source of all things, through constant forfeiture; the personality is then under the dictatorship of that intelligence but has no exclusive existence.

If you surrender any vested interest in your life, you won’t have to do anything as the best most perfect intelligence will do everything for you. That’s the leap: Knowing you are taken care of in the absence of the “me.” Therefore, offering yourself as a living sacrifice to That.

Then it is only That having a relationship with That.

Question: Why do you explain your teaching as a prayer for death?

This teaching is a prayer for death, because one must actually come in contact with that purifying flame that wipes clean the dispositions of the mind and reveals the ground or absolute. These dispositions are the tendencies of the exclusive me or ego that finds its identity in “I am the body and mind.” Giving rise to suffering.

When one realizes that it is “me” that stands in the way, that same “me” cries out and offers itself as a living sacrifice to the Source or Lord of All.

As ego incarnate:

“I am not here to stand but to kneel.
I am not here to be fulfilled but emptied.
I am not here to begin but to end.
I am not here to gain but to lose.
I am not here to live but to die:
You can have me.”

Grace is what fills the body once you have emptied it.

Question: I feel this intense energy when I meditate and freedom. Yet, I struggle with integrating that in everyday life and relationships. Do you have any practices I can do?

Here is a practice good for any aspirant:

Establish the freedom to look. Go somewhere that there is a lot of people. Like the mall on a weekend. Find a place to sit that positions you where there is much foot traffic. Sit there as if you are prepared to meditate.

As people come into your orbit, just look; do not grasp. Remain still and practice your meditation in this setting. People will naturally look at you and make eye contact with people walking by while remaining in unmanifested awareness or empty stillness.

With the utmost vulnerability, just look without reacting and allow others to look into the depths of your heart and mind. You must begin to willingly reveal yourself in all situations.

As you begin here is a mantra:

“contact not concepts”

Question: It still seems impossible to know myself in spite of the body. Why?

We “know” the world through our senses. Our senses belong to the body. It is not surprising that we “think” we are the body. Everything we know is in relationship to the senses. My spouse, my money, my job. You would have no concept about your spouse if you never seen, heard or felt them. When you think of your spouse you think of all the memories you have had through your senses. What they look like, their voice, the texture of their skin, how they think and react, etc. Body’s interacting with bodies-senses interacting with senses.

The reason it seems impossible to discover yourself is because you are still trying to “know your self” through sensational experience. You want to feel it, see it, hear it-experience it. This is impossible, because your True Self is the animator of the body and mind. It is like a lamp wandering around aimlessly illuminating everything looking for the source of the light. You are It!

Do not procrastinate. Discard the illuminated details and remain inward by rooting up your exclusive interest in mind/body activity by surrending your desire to preserve and fulfill the “me,” that is obssessed with forms (conceptual and physical).

Do whatever you need to do that life presents to you. Let that be mind and body business. While at the same time staying fixed in the notion “that all things are preordained.” Therefore, none of my business. Which is an act of complete sacrifice that pulls down the grace that allows for actual contact with the reality “who am I in spite of thought and body sensations?”

To love the One is to love the sum

One cannot go all the way without that concrete aspect and secret relationship with the Beloved. Eventually It chooses the aspirant because the devotee has chosen It to the exclusion of all other endeavors! And one becomes That.

Since it is the Source of all things once united, one inherits all things, including there former personality which comes back refined and perfectly under the control of the Self. To love the Source is to inadvertently love all that springs from It, while bypassing the details.

Question: I am an intense seeker who has a family. I do many practices like yoga, read, take walks etc. I feel moments of peace and then I become overwhelmed with intense fear. I am afraid of losing maybe or confronting. Can you please give me some guidance?

Fear always exists when there is a sense of separation. What is happening is that you are living a dual life. Where there is duality there is always going to be fear. Try an experiment:

You said yourself that you know that your day to day life and family will help push you along your path. Starting now and for the next couple days, drop the spiritual stuff (trying to meditate more, yoga, etc.) you can come back to that, as it will always be there.

Instead, fall into your life completely and consider whatever your life is presenting as your spiritual path (just for a couple days). The truth is part of you is pushing it away in the hopes to find something deeper, higher, etc. Maybe “what is” is all you need for growth, and when you give 100% of your attention to it with the conviction that you are going to serve the moment whatever it is, you will integrate your normal life which becomes your custom tailored path.

All the lessons you need to learn are right there within your closest relationships. Try for just two days to believe that meeting your day to day completely is the highest spiritual practice, not anything outside of that.

Some of my friends call themselves religious, but they often spew hate. I don’t want to get caught in that trap. How do I discern and truly discover what’s real?

If a teaching diversifies by prescribing seemingly separate and unrelated causes to the diversities of life, then it is useless. Any true teaching should lead to a non-dual realization and direct the aspirant to the recognition that they already are what they are seeking and therefore the need to acquire anything is an illusion. While at the same time encouraging the aspirant to direct all one’s energy to discover the source of all known existence which becomes you.

You need only turn towards the Eternal, by turning away from the obstructions (namely, the desire to seek experiences through the senses and the fulfillment of thought as happiness which creates a seperate-self) that keeps one from coming in actual contact with the Source.
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This does not mean forcing oneself to become aloof etc. Rather, allowing the actions of your particular life to go on outwardly, but inwardly you are not to concerned with outcomes as all your attention is primarily focused on: Who am I in spite of thought and body sensations? While feeling a deep reverence and love towards the Source, accompanied by an abiding desire to unite with that Source while remaining in a body.

Sometimes, I feel like a prisoner in this body. It just seems like how I feel is not my decision. Why?

So long as there is attachment to the body (or identification with body responses), there will be a sense of bondage. As long as you perceive yourself as different from the boundless, you will always be bound. Know yourself apart from all concepts. In the end, this also includes what you think you know about yourself. The truth is, you cannot know yourself; you can only be yourself in spite of all that exists. One of the greatest misconceptions is that knowledge is not a delusion. This revelation comes in deep stillness.

You must strive with relentless perseverance to touch the Source of all things; while shunning its details. What is body business is body business and what is mind business is mind business, leave them be. Let those activities be secondary and with all the energy you can muster bend your intention towards the Primary Source of All; which will then integrate the details without illuminating them exclusively.

Body experiences will then be your secondary experience, and the unconditioned ether that contains them will then become your primary reality.

Question: What is the method you suggest to achieve the highest truth?

Devotion is the prerequisite and stillness is the method. Through that stillness one brings the sum of their energy to call down grace which removes the veil.

This stillness can be described as a deliberate use of will to surrender the will. From here, all one’s energy that was fragmented and distributed into characteristics of the me, sense based seeking, self-maintenance, etc.; reassembles in the heart and explodes from the center.

How is one to do that?

What do you want? Is the secret of death what you really want? Or do you want That but at the same time some of your energy is still attached to the preservation of some aspect of “my life?”

Therefore, a very rare type of devotion is required for what you ask. Sit in a quiet place and ask yourself and decide: What is the ONE thing I am willing to give up all other things for? This question will help you see where your devotion already lies.

You need the total sum of all the energy not 99.99%. It requires the whole thing to bring down the grace that is required to pierce the veil.

Why do some say separate the ego out, while others talk about oneness? What happens to the ego after spiritual awakening? Don’t I need it to function?

You are referring to different parts of the spiritual path. In the beginning it is vital to be able to discern the transient from the eternal. Most if not all are born identified with form and that seems natural for children. Form by nature is fleeting; so if we believe we are nothing but form (mainly body and mind), then we suffer because we are constantly under the notion that we are decaying and that which we are attached to is always trying to slip away. So devotion will be geared and directed towards self- preservation.

Therefore, it is important to ask a question that points to the awareness in spite of mind and body; in spite of form. If one devotes themselves to the inquiry relentlessly they will discover that they are the observer of phenomenon. And suffering starts to ease up; there are some good days and some bad days as the seeker is still living in duality and has not transcended the opposites. Nevertheless, there is some space now between the awareness and the transient thoughts and body sensations. A monumental feat in and of itself. This is the practice of mindfulness. There is an awareness that must be mindful of ego and its tomfoolery. What happens to the ego here is that it is exposed, examined, and its mechanics understood and put in its proper place.
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I am unhappy and disillusioned by some of these spiritual teachers, even been tricked by some of these “empowerment teachers.” Awareness helps but I feel frustrated because they all say, “practice presence, be the awareness.” I have been doing that but it still feels like a struggle. Why? You seem to speak beyond that; but you are hard to understand.

There are a couple different avenues one may take when they discover awareness. One may become a teacher at helping others get to that space of awareness. The sole purport being rest, relax into your awareness and stop seeking, you already are what you seek, accept all feelings, you’re perfect, be the container not the contained, etc. An important part of the path but not the Final Truth. That is as far as the teacher can take the student because that is as far as they have gone themselves. Why? They are just grateful they do not feel as bad as they used to and that is enough. I can never be a Maharshi, a Jesus, or a Buddha they tell themselves.

A good life one can lead, but duality has not been transcended as there is still separation between awareness and the object of awareness; the observer and the observed. (Note: When this nondual reality is experienced, the relationship between observer and observed continues for practical purposes of life, but there is a complete annihilation of an exclusive me which experiences it. The T.V. is on and the story plays out interrupted, but no one is watching).
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Question: Why am I still not free? I know myself as awareness; yet I still bounce back and forth into these problems! Why?

The truth is you are still seeking freedom, enlightenment, whatever you would like to call it; as an experience in the body and mind. The very nature of body and mind is that they are breaking down; and that is a problem because there is no Absolute to be found there. Yet that is where your identity is established, although more subtle now.

Your secret desire is to be able to experience the Absolute without having to completely give up the me.

Freedom is not dependent on mind/body conditions. Therefore, real freedom can only be experienced when the seeker finally realizes who they are in spite of form. Then whatever happens in form is not your business. This type of freedom requires a fundamental transformation or death of mind/body identification.
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Question: What is the true meaning of faith and how do I have it?

Faith is the extraordinary courage to step away from the known, in order to come in contact with the Unknown; which is God or Love; which becomes you.

This courage comes as a result when an intense aversion for sense experience becomes present in the seeker; and they realize through many trials that what they are seeking can never be found in form. It is from this point of view that one finds them self in a space devoid of all outward seeking; therefore remaining in intense unmanifested stillness and ready to die for It.

Here, Grace strikes; and one must rely solely on the strength of one’s faith or courage to pass through the threshold of the known into the Unknown; which unites the individual with the One.

The Truth of what you Are

Life is like a vast garden with innumerable fruits, flowers and forms. We spend our whole lives searching in this place for the ultimate or most comfortable experience. The spiritual seeker looks for the one fruit that will unite them all, some look for a particular flower that never dies; while others find something pleasing and proceed to fiercely protect it.

There are some who have broken off into groups and have claimed a certain part of the garden, while excluding others and beating back any intrusion. They yell from afar “join us; or keep walking.”

Surely one can spend lifetimes searching, fighting to protect a corner in this place, etc. What do all these forms, people and everything in this vast garden have in common?

It is the one ground from which all these things spring and die back into it. This is the Final Cause or One which is undeniably the source of all things including the seeker.

The discovery of this Sacred Ground, is to discover oneself as It. Therefore, one knows their self as all things simultaneously from the most horrendous to the most sublime-yet are none of it exclusively for this reason.

When the Conceptual-Self dies into this ground, the seeking is over but that is just the beginning. Awareness then deepens the experience of being all things simultaneously. An intense love relationship begins with oneself as you meet yourself in all things, people and places.

The seeking ends, but the love for learning about one self in the infinite expressions of form begins.

How would you define spiritual awakening and how do I achieve it?

Awakening can be defined as a fundamental transformation or death of the exclusive “me” that has its identity in “I am the body and mind,” to a non-exclusive awareness that simultaneously sees itself in all things, times and places without a second of differentiation.

Just like the sunlight does not need to be achieved as it is there ever shining, awakening is your true nature and does not need to be achieved. What does need to be achieved and does take effort is the removal of the curtain that obstructs the sunlight.

The only prerequisite for this removal is an earnest and unwavering devotion to discover something that is eternal, everlasting, complementary to all, unchanging, and final. This unwavering devotion brings down the grace which removes the first veil and reveals the “witness.” Or the famous end of seeking stage. This is meditation with the eyes closed.

There is a second awakening that is much rarer:

Only the few go any further and the prerequisite is an unfathomable devotion towards and love for The One Final Cause or Supreme Resident that is intuited but remains elusive. The energy that was once seeking now transforms into intense devotion to realize oneself in all things, times and places as a permanent reality.

This is meditation with the eyes open. Now they prepare themselves by purifying the mind and strengthening the nervous system so to unite with their Great Beloved. This Supreme Cause chooses the devotee because the devotee has chosen It. When the final embrace is experienced, even the sense of “I” vanishes. Here, even the observer or witness is lost and the whole entity is lit ablaze; and the final shreds of an exclusive me are destroyed.

 

Question: Can you give me any techniques or methods that can help me achieve enlightenment?

First, enlightenment cannot be achieved because it is the natural state which is present even now. Rather, it can be revealed if the obstructions are removed. Like someone pulling up the blind and realizing the light and warmth of the sun was always there. You do not achieve sunlight, you simply pull away the curtain. What is required is the devotion and intensity to have the obstructions removed.

There are numerous methods that can be employed; all of which are aimed at quieting the mind and strengthening the nervous system.  Upon experimenting with these methods you will see that the mind once again starts back up and seems to “grow a new head.”

The methods and techniques do not completely remove the obstruction or the exclusive sense of “I,” whose material is made up of individual thought patterns that create a seemingly separate-self or sense of individuality; because techniques do not reveal the Source of techniques.

As a general practice one should make the effort to sit still and remain as an observer of the stimulus coming in through the senses and observe thoughts while asking oneself constantly, “who am I in spite of the these thoughts and body sensations?” This is the method of inquiry into the Source or Final Cause for the method and inquirer.

As you go deeper, techniques will be presented as a revelation and they will become a natural organic expression and will be custom tailored for that specific body and mind.

How can you teach non-duality using words? This seems hypocritical and dualistic.

It is only through direct non-conceptual contact with Reality that later on allows the teacher to use thought-forms (words), as to conduct them self in the world of form. This must be, because the teacher must speak the language of form to a seeker; as the seeker is still seeking in form.

Just as fire, heat and light are all spoken of as separate for practical purposes, but in the absence of description they are all One. The teacher remains practical in order to push the seeker into the impractical.