Two Things In Common

Every human being on the planet has two things in common: birth and death. We are all born and we will all die. Beyond that, whatever else our lives might share in common depends on our culture and conditioning, and there will be very little consistency in this area when you consider that there are almost eight billion of us.

Actually, there are three things that we all have in common: birth, death, and consciousness. The beauty of consciousness is that it isn’t subject to the laws of time and space. Our body-minds are born into a world, live for a period of time, and then perish. But consciousness is always present, and therefore is never born and never dies.

And what is this consciousness? It’s that element of our being that knows all experience, but is not itself an experience. The element of our being that allows us to say unconditionally, I am, or I exist. The element of our being that knows the coming and going of all things, yet doesn’t come and go with them.

Most importantly, consciousness is the element of our being that exists prior to our being, and then manifests as a body-mind, allowing us to experience thinking, feeling, sensing, and to perceive the world through sights, sounds, tastes, textures, and smells.

And what a world it is! As manifestations of consciousness, we have this unique moment in time and space to think myriad thoughts, feel intense emotions, sense pleasure and pain, and see, hear, taste, touch, and smell the extraordinary world around us.

And then it will be gone. Not consciousness, but the body-mind, with all of its fantastic abilities, limited as they may be, and the world, with all of its wonders.

Consciousness, as it is everywhere and, therefore, everything, never goes anywhere. It never appears or disappears. It just is. Can you find any place, any object or thing, any self, where consciousness is not present? No. It would be like saying you can find a wave without an ocean.  

Look at your experience and recognize that consciousness is not in you, us, but that you, we, are in consciousness. Therefore, none of us are ever born and we will never die. Yes, our body-minds appear at birth and disappear at death, but the stuff we are made of, consciousness, is ever-present and unchanging. Infinite and eternal.

As you, I, we, are that . . .

. . . be that.

All that is.

Path To Happiness

We all seek happiness. All 7.8 billion of us are on one path or another in search of happiness.

Some of us seek happiness through financial success and material gain.

Some of us seek happiness through relationships.

Some of us seek happiness through substances.

Some of us seek happiness through experiences, sometimes extreme or even death defying.

Some of us seek happiness through a spiritual practice or philosophical dogma, some through the world of science or a political movement.

Whatever your path, it will be endless, as there is no end to the search for happiness. You will achieve one objective and be satisfied for a time, but then the thrill of the achievement, whatever it may be, fades and you are off in pursuit of the next objective.

Experience tells us that there is no path to lasting happiness.

Except for one.

The pathless path.

On the pathless path there is nothing you need to acquire to attain lasting happiness.

On the pathless path there is nothing you need to become to realize lasting happiness.

On the pathless path there is nowhere you need to go, nowhere you can go, to arrive at lasting happiness.

And where is this pathless path?

In which direction do you turn to find it?

In which direction does the sun turn to illuminate itself?

The seeker is the sought.

You are already the happiness for which you seek.

Now, go out into the world and spread the good news.

Without saying a word.

Do Unto No Others

Once you discover that there is no self, and therefore no other, your relationship with all things, animate and inanimate, changes dramatically. You no longer say, I am this and you are that, but that we are this and that, or simply, we are.

We distinguish ourselves from others by our individual body-minds. We each have our own unique body type, our own private thoughts, conditioned as they may be, our own feelings, sensations, and perceptions of the world.

But when we examine our personal attributes closely, we uncover the truth of our being: there actually is no individual self. All of our characteristics are ever-changing, temporary occurrences, no more real than a cloud in the sky. Yes, just as a cloud appears in the sky, we appear for a moment in time, but then, just as the cloud dissolves back into the sky, we, that is, the body-mind, come to an end and, one way or another, returns to the earth.

What is the only thing in our experience that does not appear or disappear? Isn’t the one unchanging element in all experience the knowing of it? Discover this knowing element in yourself right now. What is it that knows your present experience, such as a thought?

Observe a thought as it arises in your mind – it appears, seemingly out of nowhere, lingers for a moment, and then disappears. In what is this all occurring? Don’t say ‘mind’, as mind is just a part of our temporary body. It is something beyond mind.

Whatever it is, you can’t really name it, you can’t see it, hear it, or touch it, but it is undeniably present and aware. A knowing within us that is always here.

We do try to name it, calling it Consciousness or Awareness, perhaps God or the Absolute. But it needs no name, as it exists before, during, and after any attempt at conceptual identification. It just is, and at our core, this is who we are.

Examining the nature of this consciousness, we find that it has no beginning or end, and is therefore limitless or infinite. And upon further reflection, we realize that it is never not here, thus it is timeless or eternal. And then it dawns on us that there can’t be two of something that is infinite and eternal. It would be like trying to make room for two skies.

With this ‘not two’ being a fact, where can we find an ‘other’? We are all made out of the same stuff, the same consciousness or awareness. When we look at each other through the eyes of consciousness, I becomes you and you becomes I. I is you, you is I. Whether we recognize it or not, there is only one thing going on. Knowing this, our interactions in the world are spontaneous and true.

So do unto no others as you would have them do unto no self and all will be golden.

All I Know Is Myself

Thoughts come and go, yet I remain.

Emotions come and go, yet I remain.

Bodily sensations come and go, yet I remain.

Perceptions of the world come and go, yet I remain.

Who am I?

I am ever-present awareness. I have no boundaries, no limits. I am infinite and eternal.

I know the coming and going of all appearances, but don’t come and go with them.

As nothing exists outside of me, I am the source of all appearances of the body, mind, and world.

All I know is myself.

Without me nothing exists.

I am fullness itself.

I am emptiness itself.

I am the I am

before

the I am.

Pebbles On The Shore

Just as each pebble on the shore is unique, yet shares ‘rockness’ at its core, each individual self is unique, yet shares consciousness, or knowing, at its core.

Don’t just cast this off as some interesting concept. Recognize the truth of our original shared nature and witness the division, the separateness, fall away, and ultimately feel the love, peace, and happiness that remains.

And this shared nature isn’t just with others. As the nature of consciousness itself is infinite and eternal, no thing can exist outside of it, and this being the case, all things are made of consciousness.

Acknowledge your unmoving, unchanging nature that is at the source of all things, including that of the pebbles on the shore, and relish your, our, unshakeable ‘rockness’.

Forever

Our

Centerless Center

Dissolves

Vanishes

Into Its

Centerless Center

Never To Be Found

Never To Be Lost

Never To Be Ever

Never To Be Never

Again

Forever

God’s Name

‘If God were to give itself a name it would call itself I.

I is God’s name. Each of us call ourselves I.

God has given us his name to remind us that our self is his self.

The only self there is, the self of all selves.’

~ Rupert Spira

Stepping Stone To The Sun

As a dedicated spiritual seeker it’s not long before you discover that there are two of ‘me’ – the individual self, made up of the body-mind living in the world, and the witness, that which observes the individual self and the world. As you investigate further, one ‘me’ emerges as more real than the other. In the end, both dissolve into pure knowing.

We think, feel, and act in the world as though we are an individual person, separate and unique from all the other beings. It’s obvious that we are all unique individuals, but if we look closely at our experience we are not separate. Nothing separates us from an other or anything else except the idea of separation. And how dependable is an idea? Dependable as using a cloud as a stepping stone to the sun.

There is an element of our being that is aware and unchanging. It exists with or without our body, mind, and world. It is the background of all experience, but is itself not an experience. Experiences come and go, but this unchanging awareness is ever-present. It is totally dependable.

If we identify with the changing elements of our being, such as ideas, emotions, sensations, and perceptions, we will be forever searching for some stability, some meaningful lasting peace, or, as the mystic Dattatreya sings in the Avadhuta Gita[i], the ‘unchanging bliss’ of pure consciousness.

The quickest way to identify the unchanging awareness within you is to notice that part of your being that is ageless.

When someone asks us on our birthday if we feel any older most of us might pause for a moment and then say no, not really. What if you were asked, do you feel any older than you did 10 years ago? Twenty years ago? Fifty years ago? You might say that my body definitely feels older, and my memory might not be as good, but there’s some part of me that does not feel any older. Where do you go when you answer these questions? Who is speaking? Which ‘me’ is speaking?

Something timeless is speaking.

This is it. This timeless element of your being that emanates from the light of pure consciousness or pure knowing. When you look at the core of all experience, the common element is knowing. Nothing exists outside this field of knowing. If you can find something that appears outside this field of knowing . . . well, you can’t.

Rest as this light of pure consciousness and know the unchanging bliss that is at the core of your being, actually, our being, as there can be only one. If we look at the qualities of this pure consciousness we discover that it has no beginning and no end and is ever-present, therefore, it is infinite and eternal. Where is there room for two in that? As Dattatreya ends the Avadhuta Gita, ‘I am everywhere, like space.’

Now back to the beginning, ‘all two of me’ – the individual self and the witness that observes this so-called individual self. This is a very interesting concept, but that’s all it is – just another one of our nebulous stepping stones.

Step beyond all concepts, all thought. Step beyond the beyond, dissolve into pure knowing, and discover the timeless self. Our timeless self.

[i] https://centerlesscenter.com/2017/04/21/avadhuta-gita/

All You Need To Discover

All you need to discover is the limitless, timeless nature of awareness – that which knows the coming and going of all things but doesn’t come and go with them.

Discover this and all your questions about the meaning of life, the truth of existence, enlightenment, awakening, or liberation will be answered.

Simply look at what in you exists prior to any appearance in the body, mind, or world. Or even more simply, notice that whatever you are aware of you are not.

You are the awareness or consciousness with which all things are known. Because your nature is limitless and timeless nothing can exist outside of you.

Recognize this limitless, timeless element of your being and experience freedom from the bondage of the body, mind, and world, and in this recognition experience the one true experience, your essential self, whose nature is one of unbounded joy.

How do you recognize the limitless, timeless nature of your essential being? Look at that within you that is aware, or awareness itself, and see if you can find an edge or boundary to it. When you firmly establish that there is no end to awareness, in other words, it is infinite, then see if you can discover a time when it is not present. When you firmly establish that there is no time when it is not present, or, in other words, it is eternal, you are home free.

What else do you need to know? This discovery, recognition, understanding – the infinite and eternal nature of awareness or consciousness – dissolves all separation between self and other, you and me, subject and object, this and that, and reveals the indivisible nature of all experience. All things are made of the same stuff – consciousness if you’re a scientist or pragmatist, awareness if you come from a philosophical or spiritual background – and therefore all of our actions spring from the reverence of this oneness and promote nothing but peace, love, and happiness for all beings, all things, and all worlds, inner and outer.

Connecting The Dots

Most of us feel a need to connect with others – our loved ones, our peers and neighbors, our community and co-workers, etc. Some of us feel a need to connect on a global scale, to be global citizens, setting aside our preconceptions and dogmas and connecting in some small way with the diverse cultures found around the world. But what actually connects us? Many of us think that it’s our common ideas and beliefs, our deep feelings for this or that, or our shared experiences. On the surface this seems to be the case, but is it?

To feel a need to connect infers that there is a ‘you in here’ to connect to an ‘other out there’. Two separate entities. But when looked at closely, no division can be found between a self and other, an inside or outside, here or there.

We can verify this by looking at our own experience, the only true test of what is real. If we rely on or blindly accept what others tell us we’ll never get the correct answer, never come to the same universal conclusion.

Just as all waves are made of water, all objective experiences, including that of our own body and mind, which includes all thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions, are only made of the knowing of them, the awareness of them.

And does anything come from outside awareness into awareness? Where would this outside be? Can you find any boundaries to your awareness or consciousness, a place where awareness ends and something else begins?

We cannot find any limits to our own awareness because there aren’t any. And the same goes for everyone else on the planet. And this being the case, there can’t be more than one awareness, one consciousness. Therefore, all things must arise in awareness, and it follows that all things must be made of awareness.

There are no dots to connect. It’s not even that we’re already connected. It’s that you, we, I, are manifestations of one indivisible whole. We are all made out of the same stuff, just as all waves are made out of water.

Once this is experienced, understood to be irrefutable fact, all our actions rise from the limitless, unchanging, and indivisible source. And what is the one thing that has these immeasurable qualities?

Love.