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!

Dining Out

‘When you go to a restaurant you don’t take your own menu.’ ~ Mooji

If you are a seeker who sincerely wants to find your essential being, you must leave who or what you ‘think’ you are out of the search. Your essential being cannot be found in any of the temporary attributes of the body, mind, or world. Your essential being is prior to all appearances.

This is really all you have to know – the source of your being, our being, is prior to all appearances. Our essential nature knows the coming and going of all appearances of the body, mind, and world, but does not come and go with them. Check this out for yourself. For example, a thought comes and goes, but the essential you, that which is aware of the thought, doesn’t come and go with it. Your essential self remains eternally present and aware, infinitely receptive to all experience, yet unchanged by any of it.

Just as you wouldn’t bring your own menu to a restaurant, you wouldn’t bring a head full of beliefs, concepts, and opinions if you were trying to discover your true nature. To be full is to leave no room for discovery. No room for dessert!

So set aside all the so-called identifying qualities of who you think you are – no name, no gender, no size, no weight, no thoughts, feelings, sensations, or perceptions. All of it goes.

What is left? Whatever it is cannot be seen, heard, touched, tasted, and has no scent. It cannot be found, yet is the background of all experience.

I, you, we, know what it is because we are that – emptiness beyond emptiness.

To be empty is to be open and receptive.

To be open and receptive is to be nothing.

To be nothing is to be everything.

To be everything is to be Love.

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.

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.

Consciousness By Any Other Name

     “What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”                                                       ~ Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

What’s in a name? In a label? A thought or a concept? Perhaps a practical convenience for communication’s sake, but what is at its source? Is its source?

Consciousness by any other name still radiates the essence of consciousness. No matter what the appearance there can only be one source, and that is consciousness – the unchanging knowing presence that is available 24/7 whether we are aware of it or not.

For a moment become aware of the word . . .

ONE

Meaningless black symbols arranged randomly on a white screen. They might mean something to you, but that would only be a coincidence. Focus on the word . . .

ONE

For the sake of investigation, let’s say that this word symbolizes the body, mind, and world – the thoughts, feelings, sensations, sights, sounds, tastes, textures, and smells – all in . . .

ONE

Now notice the screen that ONE appears on. The screen, in this case, represents the source of all appearances, the background of all experience – infinite and eternal consciousness.

We seem to have two separate objects: the screen and the word. But this isn’t actually the case. Without the screen, there is no word. The word is made of the same substance as the screen, is inseparable from the screen. But the screen doesn’t need the word. The screen is always itself regardless of what does or doesn’t appear on it.

In other words, ONE by any other name is still ONE.

One consciousness, and we are That.

And the fragrance of That?

Sublime.

I, Awareness & The Shopping Cart

I, Awareness, push my shopping cart toward the far side of the food co-op parking lot. As I approach my car, actually, my son’s car that I’ve borrowed, another car pulls in next to it and a tall woman with silver-blond hair gets out and smiles at me.

‘Can I take the cart for you when you’re done?’ she says.

‘That would be great,’ I say and smile at her.

I pull out my key, my son’s key, and see that it doesn’t have an ‘Open Trunk’ button so I stick it in the keyhole, but it won’t fit. ‘Don’t know why it doesn’t work,’ I say to the woman. ‘It’s my son’s car.’ I hurry to open the driver’s side door and pop the trunk, then hurry back to the shopping cart and grab two of the four bags and drop them in the trunk.

‘Don’t rush,’ says the woman. ‘Can I help you?’

‘Oh, no thanks,’ I say, ‘I’m fine.’ I place the other two bags in the trunk and close it. I give the shopping cart a gentle push in her direction. ‘Thanks again.’

She takes the cart and our eyes meet. I’m immediately struck with an overwhelming feeling of well-being. It’s none other than Awareness myself who looks into my eyes. Luminous, penetrating eyes accompanied by a wonderful, warm broad smile.

‘No problem,’ Awareness says, rolling the cart away. ‘And have a wonderful evening.’

‘You too,’ I, Awareness, say and smile again.

We melt into a cloud of shimmering light.

Oneness pushes off with the cart and Oneness drives off in the borrowed car.