Don’t Name It

We all have feelings. We feel happy, content, peaceful, angry, sad, depressed, bored, lonely, anxious, etc.

What is a feeling, really? Most of us accept feelings as part of our essential nature, but is this our actual experience?

All feelings are temporary, coming and going in the empty, open field of awareness, the source of our being. Rather than name these feelings as good, bad, or neutral, and reacting to them in some way, don’t name them at all.

Go through a day without naming or labeling any of your so-called ‘feelings’ and see what happens.

If you do this, go through a day just experiencing feelings, observing them as they come and go without naming them, you will find that what you considered a previously uncomfortable feeling is nothing more than a temporary appearance in awareness that does not affect the unchanging, knowing presence of awareness itself.

And you are this awareness. You are that. All feelings come and go in you, awareness, but you do not come and go with them. Things happen in you, not to you.

A Bird’s Simple Song

A bird’s song is a simple song, a song sung from dawn to dusk, year after year, for a lifetime. It may be only a few melodic notes, perhaps a small variation here or there, but always beautiful in its simplicity.

Composers from all musical traditions have been inspired by birdcalls like that of the nightingale and the cuckoo. ‘The Lark in the Morning’ is an old and beloved Irish fiddle tune. The call of the Western Meadowlark brings to mind a saxophone riff by Charlie ‘Bird’ Parker.

And to know ourself as Awareness is a simple song – there is only one thing going on, not two. That is, there is only one consciousness, one aware-presence that knows the coming and going of all things, but doesn’t come and go with them. And all things that arise in consciousness, which, in fact, is everything, must be made of consciousness, leaving us to conclude that consciousness is all there is.

The source of our being.

How simple is that?

I, Awareness, sing my song, my simple song

My one note song

Of silence

From dawn to dusk, from dusk till dawn

A timeless melody

~

As I am boundless, with no beginning or end

Nothing exists outside of me

I am the source of all sound

~

All songs appear in me, in my silence

All songs are known by me, by my silence

All songs are made of me, of my silence

~

I, Awareness sing my song, my simple song of silence

Alive with the rhythms of peace, love, and happiness

The only song I know

My one note song

Not two

Ram Dass, Going Home

For those of us who hold Ram Dass dear to our heart, if you haven’t already, watch the newly released Ram Dass Going Home streaming on Netflix.

Words can’t express the indebtedness to Richard Alpert, who, in the midst of the political, social, and spiritual turmoil of the late ‘60s, went to India in search of the truth and returned as Ram Dass to spread his message of peace, love, and happiness to the many seekers who were inspired by his journey. His book ‘Be Here Now’ motivated us to join him on the pathless path and discover our essential nature that his presence now embodied.

And now, at age 87, having gracefully weathered a severe stroke he suffered over twenty years ago, he is preparing to die. His mantra, ‘I am loving Awareness.’ His message, ‘Let’s all lead each other home.’

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Ram Dass!

Eternal gratitude!

We love you!

Pay More Attention

Pay more attention to the space in which objects arise rather than to the objects themselves.

Anything that can be experienced – a thought, memory, mental image, mood, a perception of the world through the five senses – is a fleeting appearance in the limitless, silent space within which they appear. They are like characters in a movie whose existence depends solely on the screen.

Pay more attention to the screen, this limitless space within you, this unchanging, ever-present knowing that is the background of all experience. This is the source and substance of your original being. Of our original being, as there can be only one. ‘Limitless’ leaves no room for two.

Then ask yourself, who or what is paying attention to this limitless space?

Skyless Cloud

Look closely at awareness, the knowing presence that is our essential being. Notice that all things come and go in this awareness – thoughts, memories, feelings, sensations, sights, sounds, tastes, textures, and smells – but it doesn’t come and go with them.

Can you remove this awareness from your experience? Can anything, any thing, be known without it?

Can you remove the sky from the clouds?

Without the sky, can there be a cloud? Without awareness, can there be a thought, a feeling?

We often see a cloudless sky, but never a skyless cloud. We sometimes experience an aware stillness, but never an independent thought.

There can be an infinite number of clouds, but only one sky in which they appear and disappear, just as there can be an infinite number of thoughts, feelings, or sensations, but only one awareness in which they arise and pass away.

Just as an endless parade of clouds come and go while the sky remains unchanged, an endless parade of thoughts, feelings, sensations, and perceptions come and go in the unchanging field of awareness that is our original nature.

We can experience awareness without thoughts, but we can never experience a thought without awareness. In other words, you can take thoughts out of awareness, but you can’t take awareness out of thoughts.

Find this awareness, this aware stillness that is in the background of all experience, the stuff out of which all experience is made, and know your original nature.

Where is it?

Just as clouds sometimes obscure the sky, but we know it’s always there in the background, notice that awareness, the knowing presence that is your, our, original nature, exists prior to the appearance of any thought or perception. It is ever-present and aware regardless of what arises and passes away.

We know without a doubt the clear, pristine sky that is always present and unchanged by any cloud that appears and disappears within it. Now know without a doubt the clear, pristine presence of awareness that is always with you, always is you, unchanged by any appearance.

Then let go the mental images of the skyless cloud and an aware presence, only concepts of mind. Let them dissolve in that which is beyond all images, beyond all concepts.

Beyond the beyond.

Welcome!

OM!

Our essential being, Awareness, that which knows all experience but is unaffected by it, is . . .

All powerful.

OM . . . nipotent.

All knowing.

OM . . . niscient.

(You can see where this is going.)

And always here.

OM . . . nipresent.

OM to you, OM to me, OM to we, in and as Awareness.

OM!

The Answer

The answer is not in the mind, the mind is in the answer.