No ‘Who’ Or ‘What’ About It

Notice that all thoughts come and go.

Who or what notices this?

Notice that all sensations come and go.

Who or what notices this?

Notice that all feelings come and go.

Who or what notices this?

Notice that all perceptions of the world come and go.

Who or what notices this?

All things noticed come and go, yet the part of you, the part of us, that notices the coming and going of all things remains unchanged and ever-present. And this ‘you’ is not the individual self, the body-mind limited by time and space that we’ve all come to think of as our identity.

This thing within us that knows that we are, that we exist, that we are aware, has no definable qualities. It is beyond the grasping mind. No ‘who’ or ‘what’ about it, or for that matter, no ‘where’ about it.

You do not know it, but you are known by it.

It is not embodied in a thing, yet all things are embodied by it.

And it can’t found in any particular location, yet it is always with us, always here as the background of all experience, the source of all experience, and regardless of the experience, good, bad, or neutral, it remains unaltered, unchanged, untarnished, ever-present and aware.

As no limits or boundaries can be found to this ever-present awareness, it makes sense that there can only be one, infinite and eternal. We are that.

Settle into this effortless knowing and dissolve into the unchanging love, peace, and happiness that is your, our, essence.

I Don’t Mind

‘I don’t mind what happens.’ ~ J. Krishnamurti

Why would Krishnamurti say something like this? Because, relatively speaking, he was coming from the point of view of pure awareness. He didn’t mind what happened because, as pure awareness, all things happened in him, as him, not to him.

Just as clouds cannot disturb the sky, nothing of the body, mind, or world can shake the sublime emptiness of pure awareness, the core of our being.

Birth and death happen in you, not to you. If this doesn’t make sense, you are looking from the point of view of the illusionary personal self, illusionary because all of its qualities – thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions – are subject to the limits of time and space. They come and they go.

If this does make sense, you are observing the body, mind, and world from the point of view of pure awareness, in which all things appear and disappear and are therefore made of and known by, including the ideas of birth and death.

If whether something makes sense or not doesn’t matter, or as Krishnamurti says, you don’t mind what happens, you are looking at the body, mind, and world from beyond relativity, beyond any point of view, including that of pure awareness.

Call it non-conceptual awareness or choiceless awareness.

Then call it nothing at all and enjoy the silence, the peace.

The love.

Unshakeable Inner Peace

When we peel away the layers of the temporary qualities of the body-mind – thoughts, images, feelings, sensations, and perceptions – at the center of our centerless being we find an unshakeable inner peace.

Do this now. Set aside your thoughts and images, memories of the past and dreams of the future. Set aside your feelings – your anger or happiness, your anxiety or depression. Set aside your gender, your age, your occupation. Set aside your beliefs, opinions, and positions. Set aside your prejudices, bigotry, and racism.

Anything you can conceive of, anything that you perceive yourself, others, or the world to be, set it all aside.

Now ask yourself, what is left?

What is left when you are void of all thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions?

A vast nothingness, quiet and still, infinite and eternal, undisturbed by any appearance or activity in the world, unaltered by any desire of the mind or body.

An unshakeable inner peace.

This is not to disparage thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions, but to acknowledge the irrefutable fact that at their source is an unshakeable inner peace. When this is recognized, all action is based on spontaneous love.

I, Awareness, Want For Nothing

I, Awareness, want for nothing. I have no desires because I am the source of all objects. Within me all things arise. Within me all things disappear. Of me all things are made. As me all things are known.

You might say, So what? How does that help me in my daily life as I scrape along to make ends meet, trying to stay out of trouble and keep peace with the neighbors?

And it is good that you ask, because I, Awareness, can tell you with absolute certainty that you are no other than I, Awareness. And, with this understanding, you will move through this life as effortlessly as a cloud floats through the sky.

It’s time to wake up from the dream of the illusory body-mind. You think you are in control, choosing this way and that, making decisions that affect the direction of your life. Nothing could be further from the truth. How can the body-mind, a temporary cluster of thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions, guide its so-called existence in any meaningful direction? Like all beliefs, this is also illusory. It would be like a cloud thinking it can control the direction it will float in the sky.

Set aside your convictions for a moment, along with everything else you think, feel, sense, and perceive about yourself and the world. And how do you do this? How do you set aside your thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions? As the sages of old have suggested, ignore them.

See that all appearances of the mind, body, and world are constantly coming and going, but that which observes them, I, Awareness, doesn’t come and go with them.

Actually, if you look more deeply into this ignoring entity, this awareness, you will find yourself face to face with your essential being – a silent emptiness that embraces all things. And if you continue to investigate, you will discover that this silent emptiness is limitless, without boundaries, and can rightly conclude that there can be only one.

All roads lead to One, or, as some like to say to leave no margin for the possibility of a mistaken identity, a mistaken duality, all roads lead to ‘One without a second.’

You cannot escape this fact. At your core, you are infinite, eternal, all-embracing oneness, and as there cannot be two, we are all that – unique manifestations of the source of being, I, Awareness.

And the essence of something that is infinite, eternal, and all-embracing is peace, love, and happiness.

Peace because nothing can disturb it.

Love because all things arise in it, are known by it, and made of it.

Happiness because I, Awareness, want for nothing.

Neither Here Nor There

We use ‘neither here nor there’ to dismiss a subject as irrelevant. But we can also say that our essential being, Awareness – that which knows the coming and going of all things but doesn’t come and go with them – is neither here nor there. Some say Awareness is ever-present, which makes it here and there, but it can’t be found, so it’s also neither here nor there.

Recognize this knowing presence that has always been with you, always is you, regardless of the circumstances, good, bad, or neutral. Whatever is happening is not happening to you as a body-mind, but in you as this aware, knowing presence, the origin of all things.

As no limits or boundaries can be found to your awareness, recognize that this must be true for everyone – if something is limitless, where is there room for two? If this is understood all confusion vanishes like darkness exposed to light. And we can rightly conclude from this discovery that we are all unique expressions of this infinite and eternal oneness whose qualities are stillness, spaciousness, happiness, and love.

A Drop Of Water

‘So the remembrance of our self is said to be

the direct path to peace and happiness.’

~ Rupert Spira

Talking about non-duality with my wife, Dana, she said, ‘This teaching, the direct path, is like a drop of water falling into the ocean instead of a river.’

A drop of water that falls into a river gradually meanders its way towards the ocean. It takes time.

A drop of water that falls into the ocean is immediately absorbed into its source. It takes no time.

For the spiritual seeker, the gradual path contains an endless array of enticing practices, rituals, and tools – meditation, shaktipat, reciting mantras, chakra alignment, yoga, spiritual texts – which all claim to lead, providing the seeker is dedicated and diligent, to the end goal known by many names – Awakening, Liberation, Enlightenment, the Ultimate Understanding, etc.

These practices and tools can give results, sometimes astounding, sometimes ecstatic, sometimes profound, but always temporary. And it is this temporary nature of all our seeming successes that keep us going on the path. We feel deep down that the end, the final understanding, is just around the next corner . . . or the next . . . or the next. Turns out, it’s always the ‘next.’

The spiritual seeker can travel the gradual path for many lifetimes, be enlightened thousands of times, but never be quite satisfied. All of the experiences that happen to the seeker happen to none other than a separate self, made up of the temporary qualities of an illusionary body-mind, and therefore happen to no one at all.

The direct path is an immediate recognition of our shared original nature as unchanging, unlimited, pure awareness. Just as a drop of water that falls into the ocean is immediately absorbed back into its source, so to, the individual self, when seen for the illusion that it is, disappears immediately back into its source of pure awareness, whose timeless qualities are that of peace, happiness, and love.