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“The Tao that can be told is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named is not the eternal name.
The nameless is the beginning of heaven and Earth.
The named is the mother of the ten thousand things.
Ever desireless, one can see the mystery.
Ever desiring, one sees the manifestations.
These two spring from the same source but differ in name;
this appears as darkness.

Darkness within darkness.
The gate to all mystery.

Lao Tsu

Stairs

A great change is happening

All over the world ordinary people like you and me are experiencing a spiritual awakening. This is something happening within the consciousness of humanity and it is changing everything from the way we perceive ourselves to the way we perceive and experience the world around us.

A revolution is happening — a revolution in consciousness. A transformation, a fundamental shift in our perception of reality.

The world is waking up.

We are realizing that we are not who we believed ourselves to be but something far greater than we could ever possibly imagine. Humanity is breaking free from the shackles of the past that bind us and discovering freedom. A real and genuine freedom from limitation, tyranny, intimidation, injustice, control and manipulation. A freedom from delusion.

The world is waking up.

We all want to live in peace and harmony, without constant war and the imposed misery and interference by authoritarian systems. We have already more than enough resources in the world to provide everyone with everything we all need to live a happy, fulfilling and creative life, full of natural expression. To achieve this there has to be a fundamental shift in consciousness. This is what’s happening all over the world to people just like you and me.

The world is waking up.

Already we are seeing huge cracks in the fabric of the systems that govern and control us. This is all changing very rapidly. We can see clearly through the deceitful game of control and manipulation.

The world is waking up.

We are ONE.

One being. One consciousness. One reality. One truth. ONE.

Waking up to this is very powerful because it is what we all are. It cannot be controlled, manipulated, polluted, corrupted, damaged or perverted in any way. This is our strength. This is our power. This is our world. This is our freedom.

There are powerful dark forces at work that do not want this to happen and will do anything to prevent us breaking free from the imposed systems of indoctrination, manipulation and mind control that are designed to keep us all slaves to the system.

“Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we’re being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I’m liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That’s what’s insane about it.”
John Lennon

One of the many effective ways of achieving this is to keep us all pumped-up with fear and anxiety by orchestrating nefarious events and using the main-stream media outlets to deliver an endless stream of chaos, blame, misinformation, lies and deceit. Like an infection this corruption has deliberately infiltrated all aspects of our systems of society. It is clearly evident to many people now the corrupt global elitist power system run by relatively few psychopaths is rotten to the core and directly responsible for the death, destruction and imposed fear and suffering to hundreds of millions of people. What a tragic, pathetic state of affairs we are in.

Now the Internet has been hijacked and they are interfering, corrupting, and perverting the freedom of speech that is our fundamental human right. It is abundantly clear that these systems of mind control and manipulation do not represent or serve the interests of the people.

The world is waking up.

How can anything suppress the truth, the realization of what we are?

Truth will prevail.

The world is waking up.

As more of us awaken from the hypnotic dream of separation and realize our universal oneness the authorities lose more control, influence and power. Remember they are few and we are many. This is our strength and we need to express it fully.

“Human sickness is so severe that few can bear to look at it.
But those who do will become well.”
Vernon Howard

Time to wake up, cast off the shackles of delusion and be who we are — eternal spiritual beings of immense love, compassion and intelligence abiding here in this dimension, for a while, in human form.

The world is waking up.

Be who you are.

The world is waking up.

Be Awake.

Spiritual teachings

There’s a plethora of spiritual teachings out there. It’s a mind-field and extremely confusing. Some say this, some say that. So who do you believe when so many seem to contradict each other?

All the global organized religions and most of the alternative “New Age” teachings all offer to make your life better in some way — how you can become a better person basically. This is very attractive which is why these teachings are so popular. They offer to “add” something to your life — like obtaining “enlightenment” for example.

I followed teachings and practices like this for many years in the conviction I was evolving by walking the spiritual path — that enlightenment was something to eventually attain when I had continued to meditate for long enough, or I had dissolved enough of my past-life karma… or whatever.

It took a long time before I discovered these teachings/practices only seemed to constantly add to my delusion that I was getting somewhere. The truth was that after many years it seemed I was no closer to achieving my goal than I was at the beginning. Painfully and reluctantly I had to admit I was madly in love with only a fantasy. It wasn’t even my own fantasy. It was what I had been told. It was what I wanted to believe in and over a period of many years I had endlessly and meticulously embellished this belief.

After decades living in denial I was forced to accept that most teachings, particularly those using control and manipulation, have no connection whatsoever to Reality.

Awakening

Then an energetic shift — an “awakening” happened. No effort was required only an open acceptance to the invitation to simply let go of everything.
(* see details below)

“Me” simply dropped and immediately everything fell away. Every idea, belief, experience, dream, hope, anxiety, fear, and fantasy. The energetic explosive bliss of Satori revealed the true unbounded nature of eternal existence. This is all there is.

Three days later the Satori ended. Immediately I was back into mind/body consciousness with freedom gone. The pain and misery were indescribable. The Genie having tasted eternal freedom was now back in the bottle again so to speak. (** details below)

A huge amount of confusion, misery and depression ensued — yet conscious awareness was continuously present as an infinite void of emptiness existing as the absolute foundation of reality as well as the appearance of the manifest relative world. Two worlds, poles apart and I stood with a foot in each. Since then an absolute intuitive knowing that both these polarities are the same singular reality has remained.

The overwhelming awe of infinite emptiness continued, along with disorientation and confusion for about five or six years — an extremely uncomfortable period in which my body, particularly my brain, felt like it was being re-wired and re-structured. An entirely new way of functioning is taking place which is still ongoing.

Gradually, naturally, an unfolding, a flowering, a transformation is happening. Pockets of resistance remaining started to dissolve and I started meditating again. With patience I learned to trust more and more in what is happening.

This is surrender.

Letting go.

Allowing.

Being.

A new, real and authentic spiritual possibility is continuously being revealed through Grace.

Cooperating fully the heart opens to the Divine.

__________________________________________________________

* details:

November 2005 I was attending a residential in Wales with Tony Parsons and experiencing an increasing build-up of pressure in both the head and chest generating an urgent sense of alarm. Something had to give. Based on yogic experience I knew this was spiritual energy, however the rational thinking part of my brain was somehow convinced a possible heart attack was immanent – so I had to face a sudden, irrational fear of demise.

The rational part of my brain dealt with this anxiety in a calm and sensible manner, which is unusual. We all know we are going to die, it’s the only certainty in life, sooner or later we have to face our demise or continue to live in denial.

I accepted the inevitable, whatever that might be. Letting go, the anxiety and fear dissolved and a wonderful feeling of calm serenity flooded my being while the pressure suddenly increased way beyond the previous “alarming” levels.

Several hours later, like a volcano about to erupt, I sensed the pressure about to explode.

What seemed like the instant before everything suddenly stopped, as if put on hold as if awaiting “my acceptance” to allow this to happen. I was clearly being given a choice. I could allow or abort – the choice was very much mine. For a second time that day I simply “let go” and the explosive blissful energy of Satori happened immediately.

Although this was something that appeared to just “happen”, in the sense that it required no conscious effort or control to bring it about — “choice” was clearly available and instrumental in “allowing” this to take place — it could only proceed with my “consent”.

I mention this in detail simply to illustrate there is a beautiful, divine precision involved and you are not just catapulted into the unbounded void in some hap-hazard, arbitrary manner as many vague teachings seem to suggest.

The explosive bliss of Satori (more detail) revealed my original, unbounded, eternal nature — beyond birth, death and duality. Inherent within Satori was the absolute recognition of the singularity of all things — Oneness — “WOW! This is it!”

Yet “I” had no idea who was awakening, who was realizing oneness? I had absolutely no idea. My personal identity had gone, fallen away along with everything else — yet something was fully awake, something was realizing itself as all that is. Something was vibrantly alive and unique, intimately connected to the source of divine love by being, consciousness and bliss — Sat, Chit, Ananda.

I’m still unable to answer the question “Who is it that awakens?” There is simply no answer available. In fact the very question, just like “Who am I?” is redundant and irrelevant…

All that can be said is that Reality reveals itself to itself by itself for itself.

** details:

The return “back” into “ordinary” body/mind consciousness from Satori was immediate and without any choice. The shock was totally devastating and lasted for many years — the cause of much misery and depression.

__________________________________________________________

Spiritual experiences are not awakening

Spiritual experiences, even mystical experiences, should not be confused with awakening. Such experiences, as wonderful as they are, can often produce profound and even a life changing experience but they always happen to the person who experiences them. The individual remains the center of the experience — the experience happens to them.

Awakening is not something that happens to the person.

Localized energy trapped within the restricted confines of the body energetically explodes up and out from the person and back into everything that is. A total radical energetic shift of perception happens.

Awakening is freedom from the person — an awakening to “all that is”.

Prior to awakening the individual experiences themselves as separate from everything else — this generates a feeling of incompleteness and an endless longing for something else — that’s the dilemma. Anything to fill the gap in the belief that closing the gap will bring fulfillment, completeness. This self-perpetuating dilemma is based on feeling separate and is why the seeker can never find what they’re looking for — they can never fill the gap, never become “enlightened”. It’s impossible.

Consequently there is no practice or ritual the individual can do to bring enlightenment about or even make it more likely to happen. Even surrender, letting go, simply can’t happen before awakening because there’s nothing available to surrender to except perhaps some mental/emotional generated idea that is totally unreal — another construct, another fantasy.

Understanding this is necessary because there are a vast number of teachers, teachings and practices clearly offering the possibility to make enlightenment available for the individual. This “Enlightenment For Sale” has no connection to Reality and serves only to exploit the ignorance and spiritual greed of the seeker and keep them locked into the delusion that they, the individual, can do something to eventually become enlightened.

“To ask the mind to kill the mind is like making the thief the policeman. He will go with you and pretend to catch the thief, but nothing will be gained.”
Ramana Maharshi

Such misguided teachings continue to remain popular because most seekers genuinely believe the “Guru” has access to something they don’t and therefore can help them “attain” whatever that is — isn’t this what their teachings imply? Such misplaced ideas and beliefs often create cults that serve to generate power, control and wealth for the teachers and organizations propagating them and lead genuine and sincere seekers even deeper into the delusional dream they are attempting to escape.

How can anyone possibly “teach” you to be yourself?

This is definitely not what seekers want to hear and certainly not something that “enlightened teachers” wish to convey.

I’m not negating the vital importance of the role of meditation and yogic practices. These disciplines refine the nervous system and help culture and maintain higher states of consciousness — there is no doubt about that. Never underestimate the true value and importance of many years of sincere, dedicated, spiritual practice — it provides a fertile foundation in which the seeds of wisdom take root and flourish.

Awakening is the start of the spiritual journey, not the end. Meditation and contemplation is important, particularly after awakening, to explore the nature of consciousness and facilitate its embodiment in order to function fully in an awakened state. This is a gradual process that can take years, even decades, to integrate before becoming one’s “natural state”. The suggestion often made by such teachers that “awakening is enlightenment” is misleading and adds unnecessary confusion rather than providing clarity.

Awakening to your true nature is not an automatic qualification for becoming a “spiritual teacher”. There’s a vast gulf between discovering your “Buddha nature” and becoming Buddha. Recognizing this creates humility.

Real teachings don’t offer anything to the seeker — no promises, no goals, no progressive “states”, no “advanced techniques”, no understanding — absolutely nothing. Why? Because any true teaching simply exposes the fabricated illusion of a separate identity that is experienced and therefore believed to be “real” — that’s all any authentic teaching based on Reality can do.

12

You are already what you seek

The good news is that you are already what you seek.

You are that.

Everything is that.

It’s complete. There never was a time when it was not.

“So I just stop seeking then?”

Try it and see. If only it was really that easy.

This also prompts the question: “Well if I am that already that how come I don’t experience it?”

Because ego consciousness with which we all fully identify as “I” is so ingrained, so deeply rooted through endless experience and conditioning that the localized mind/body, the “me”, has absolutely no connection to anything beyond itself and lives in a prison of its own making, even when it is explained thus. This is the very nature of ignorance and delusion — suffering. The root problem.

To illustrate the point further, you could also say that we have traveled so far away from the source that we have become completely disconnected from it. So disconnected that we have forgotten about it. Even worse — we have even forgotten we have forgotten. This is why most people have no inkling or interest in such matters.

But who really wants to know that? Honesty? Especially when there are so many teachers out there on the satsang circuit saying the opposite and promising to help get you enlightened — that’s far more interesting and far more like the stuff seekers really want to hear.

“Contrary to a popular misunderstanding, enlightenment has nothing to do with an altered state of consciousness. Enlightenment is an unaltered state of consciousness. It is pure consciousness as it actually is, before it is turned into something, before it is altered in any way.”
Adyashanti

“So how do I directly experience truth?”

The individual seeker first needs to “die” in order for truth to be revealed. When the individual “dies” that which alone remains is. This is the truth.

“So how does the individual kill the individual?”

Again, this is the dilemma, you can’t. It’s like trying to lift yourself off the ground using your boot laces. It’s simply not possible.

(Well you could throw yourself off a cliff but I wouldn’t recommend that, it’s too extreme and defeats the purpose of living in the first place.)

This is why teachings and practices based on the delusion that the separate individual can do something to become enlightened are all based on a false premise and destined to fail. These practices can and often do eventually lead to:

1. Giving up through boredom because nothing appears to be happening.

2. A total trip-out into mystical experiences — another form of delusion often mistaken for awakening.

3. Eventually if you persist long enough you’ll hit a total dead-end — a solid brick wall with no way around, under or over it. Ego cannot break through and, exhausted, will give up, usually in a state of deep hopeless despair.

Reaching this barrier is actually a good sign. The ego has reached the walls of its own prison — this is not a failure but a success. So the ego has recognized it cannot break through and go beyond its own limitations. This sense of helplessness leads to humility which leads to surrender. The individual cannot do it alone and requires help. Natural Law steps in and provides this guidance — this is the opening often necessary for an awakening and help comes from the beyond, from the source.

So the individual cannot destroy the illusion of separation — something more powerful is required. Supreme Love destroys the illusion by revealing the truth of “what is”. Nothing less. This is Grace. When we realize we can make no progress without it we somehow make ourselves available to receive it. This is humility.

Grace is always available.

The invitation to awaken is always available.

The Truth, what is, is always constantly present and available. There is nothing else.

“Our real nature is Liberation, but we imagine that we are bound and make strenuous efforts to get free, although all the time we are free. This is understood only when we reach that state. Then we shall be surprised to find that we were frantically striving to attain something that we always were and are.”
Ramana Maharshi

So “enlightenment” is not “something” to be found — it’s not some object separate from you. Already it is you. Already you are that — it’s a done deal.

There’s nothing preventing your immediate awakening right now — this very instant — except for your persistent delusion that there’s something else to find and your denial that already “this is it”.

“There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; The other is to refuse to accept what is true.”
Soren Kierkegaard

It’s very simple. We prevent ourselves from directly experiencing the truth of Reality by constantly maintaining a delusion. It’s not anyone’s fault. There is no blame or “unworthiness” — it’s simply the result of endless conditioning and our desperate attachment to an assumed identity “me” that is, in reality, completely without substance.

We are so fixated with this delusion that our beliefs, our conditioning, is “real” we will fight and kill others to maintain it — that’s how insane we actually are. For this truth to resonate we have to be very open and willing to see things actually as they are. We need to come out of hiding in order to recognize our fear and insecurity. This takes courage and conviction to look at our beliefs and conditioning and see them for what they are — just beliefs and conditioning, nothing more.

Direct contact with Reality through awakening reveals the illusionary nature of all belief systems, paths and processes, self-image, control and manipulation — all the stuff of dreams. The matrix we all constantly build to maintain our separate sense of identity, our uniqueness, our sense of wanting and needing to feel special.

“Real intelligence is the recognition of one’s own stupidity.”
Digital Dharma

So this belief that enlightenment will make us special is another misconception. So too is the idea of having to attain “perfection”. Self-realization is natural and very ordinary and has nothing to do with becoming perfect in any way. We remain who we are. Nothing changes. We accept ourselves, and others, with all our weakness, failings and faults. Nothing needs to change. The idea that something needs to change in order for something else to take place is the delusion that keeps us firmly rooted in denial.

96

Grace

So awakening is a mystery that happens through Grace.

Awakening is 100% destructive. Exposure to Reality destroys everything the individual previously experienced to be “real” and is now seen for what it is — an illusion without substance.

“Make no mistake about it — enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or being happier. Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth. It’s seeing through the facade of pretense. It’s the complete eradication of everything we imagined to be true.”
Adyashanti

Clear discrimination between the real and the false remains firmly in place after awakening.

Contrary to many teachings about awakening, the ego, the “me”, doesn’t mysteriously vanish after awakening but continues to function — albeit in a somewhat modified form.

Practically all spiritual teachings are designed to appeal to our ego consciousness, after all it’s the ego that wants to become enlightened. They offer practices and techniques to add something, to expand, transcend, or improve it in some way, or even to get rid of it — “to become enlightened”. Teachings like this are hugely popular but there is simply no connection with Reality at all. Ego consciousness appears to evolve through “spiritual” practice which creates an illusion of progress which is why people continue such practices. However with no connection to Reality any such ideas of progress remain limited and thus still firmly rooted in ignorance and delusion.

“A million is no nearer the infinite than a hundred.”

Awakening reveals a higher Self  — a higher dimension of consciousness — infinitely vast, intelligent, blissful, unconditional, beyond time and space. Eternal. This is your real nature — what you really are. It doesn’t “belong” exclusively to you, or indeed anyone, and no one has more access to it than anyone else. Inexhaustible, it is universally always available — it is all there is. There is nothing else. Everything is made of the same “stuff” — “I am That, you are That, all this is That.”

So the ego, still functioning within its limitations, now appears to exist in something far bigger, mysterious, impersonal and universal. A completely new dynamic now exists within consciousness itself. The natural exploration of this new relationship is the key to real spiritual development — a growth that can only happen beyond the limitations of the mind of ego consciousness and the collective consciousness of humanity.

Many teachings also imply that awakening is the end of the path, the completion of the journey, and there is nothing more. Awakening is certainly the end to seeking but it is only the beginning. There is no end to this.

There are also a lot of misguided teachings that confuse awakening with enlightenment. Satori is direct and immediate enlightenment, but Satori doesn’t last.

(I prefer to use the term “Satori” as it doesn’t contain the vast amount of confusing “baggage” that the word “awakening” delivers.)

The term “awakening” is used by many teachers without discrimination, to include (both/and/or/either) sudden Satori and the long-term changes that unfold naturally over time as integration, reorientation and embodiment take place.

Awakening is like opening the curtains, self-realization is the light flooding into the room.

And enlightenment?

Well who can really say what that is? (Although there seem to be an awful lot of people who appear to be very knowledgeable on the subject.)

A Zen student asked: “Is it difficult to become enlightened?”
The master said: “It depends on what your idea of enlightenment is.”
The student asked: “So, what is enlightenment?”
The master said: “I have no idea.”
The student asked: “Does this make it easier to reach enlightenment?”
The master said: “Having no idea is enlightenment.”

25

A real teaching offers you nothing

“When I attained Absolute Perfect Enlightenment, I attained absolutely nothing. That is why it is called ‘Absolute Perfect Enlightenment’.”
The Buddha — The Diamond Sutra

So a real teaching does not offer to add anything to who you think you are but instead systematically removes everything — and does not replace it with anything else. You end up with absolutely nothing. It is only through the total collapse of everything that is “me” that allows the possibility of Reality to reveal itself through Grace.

Reality — “what is”, or truth, is not something you can grasp.

It’s not something you get.

It’s nature is un-knowable.

So enlightenment, as far as the separate individual is concerned, is of no value whatsoever. It serves no purpose, gives no meaning and, as such, is completely useless. Clearly not something most teachers are keen to announce, and not something seekers particularly want to hear.

After awakening the ego continues to function but knows it’s not the King sitting on the throne any more. The throne is now empty — there’s no one to rule.

This humility is important because it allows the ego to cooperate through constant surrender to Reality — the higher Self  — the unknown. To allow the higher Self to integrate and function properly the ego “sacrifices” itself on the altar of the higher Self constantly through love. This is what real surrender is and it requires a deeply established foundation of trust, patience and fearlessness. Maturity of spirit, nothing less. This is how personal will is gradually dissolved.

“The ‘I’ casts off the illusion of ‘I’ and yet remains ‘I’.”
Ramana Maharshi

Grace from the source is the real spiritual master in this hidden, intangible, incomprehensibly infinite and subtle dimension.

Exposing the myth that Enlightenment is something to attain

For ages “Enlightenment” has continually received the best PR marketing spin possible — the miracle cure for every ailment. Seekers want all the imagined benefits but none of the complicated “messy stuff” like having to come out of denial and face the painful dark shadow aspects buried deep within their human psyche. They want all the good stuff but none of the bad.

Awakening exposes everything both good and bad — there’s nowhere to hide any more.

My impression from having met thousands of genuine and sincere seekers over decades is the startling conclusion that most do not want to realize the truth of Reality.

Shocking isn’t it?

Most of the seekers I have met are far more interested in projecting some fantasy of “enlightenment” into the future and then constantly struggling to “attain” that fantasy in the belief that doing so will somehow make it “real”.

How insane is that?

I’ll stick my neck out further and suggest that most seekers are terrified of truth. The complete annihilation of “me” is far too threatening and dangerous — of course it is! It exposes everything for what it is — a complete fabrication, a delusion — a lie. So much better instead to avoid the responsibility of awakening by remaining asleep in the illusion they have spent years maintaining based on the misguided and incomplete teachings of many so-called “enlightened” teachers.

Like many others, when I was a seeker, I imagined awakening like some kind of finishing line that once crossed meant I’d never have to suffer again: would always remain happy, never experience hardship or have to deal with anything negative any more. This is a naive and deeply held misconception — another form of denial basically, another fantasy. Difficulties and problems that existed before do not mysteriously vanish but continue to remain after awakening, in fact in some ways life can become far more difficult and challenging…

“There is no coming to consciousness without pain. People will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own Soul. One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.”
Carl Jung

Awakening is only the beginning.

This is not something that can be taught, practiced, put into words, or given to anyone.

It is to be discovered within yourself and it’s only through Grace that allows this to happen.

The ever-present reality within reveals itself to itself by itself for itself.

This is the mystery.

“In the pursuit of learning, every day something is acquired.
In the pursuit of Tao, everyday something is dropped.

Less and less is done.
Until non-action is achieved.
When nothing is done, nothing is left undone.

The world is ruled by letting things take their course.
It cannot be ruled by interfering.”

Lao Tsu

“Vedanta says that the cosmos springs into view simultaneously with him who sees it, and there is no detailed process of creation. It is similar to a dream where he who experiences the dream arises simultaneously with the dream he experiences.”

Ramana Maharshi

Anyone interested in discovering more about awakening and the resulting shift in perception I highly recommend a visit to Buddha at the Gas Pump.

I consider Adyashanti one of the most authentic teachers in the world today.

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