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Many people who've come to Self-realization have done so at a crucial developmental point in their life, catalyzed by a divorce, loss of job or savings, death of child, and so on. The evaporation of presumed security has often been the stimulant for reappraisal of mundane existence.
At a point in my own life after a divorce, I contemplated my options: I could remarry; I could continue to be a homeowner; I could continue in my business career.
I knew that I had not penetrated through to the untroubled clarity that the mystics agreed was the substance of what they spoke of as enlightenment, or the clarity of Self-realization. The crux of the matter appeared to me to be that I could either spend the rest of my days living out a life of confusion and conflict-in "ignorance," as Buddhists call it-or a life of operating out of established clarity from day to day.
I had, in earlier times, dallied with this matter of enlightenment; but being materially secure and (I supposed) self-secure, I had not engaged the enlightenment teachings with a view to change my life in any significant way.
In other words, what now rose to the top of my agenda was to unequivocally investigate Self-realization, wherever that lead.
I relinquished my career and home, and likely prospects for remarriage.
There is something about commitment, in burning your bridges behind you.
Many of the enlightened teachers, at one point or another, did just that. For some, discovering ultimate truth was a critical matter, even a life-or-death pursuit.
So, if you are at this crossroad and you are pondering what to do, it is not my place to give you advice. All I can tell you is that material security is not, in the long run, the highest value; in fact, security is fickle and deceptive. There is only one condition in which we can be absolutely secure, and we're always given the hint that it has something to do with "death before you have died." The word nirvana actually means "to snuff out." Krishnamurti's parting advice to his public, after sixty years of harangue, was simply "give up your attachment-to everything." Does that include security of whatever kind?
(adapted from the opening letter of Nothing Matters, Really)
Abiding in Nondual Awareness
exploring the further implications of living nonduality
After my first book, Living Nonduality, was published in 2009, I received dozens of e-mails, in addition to some letters, from people all over the U.S. and abroad. In many instances, particular questions or quandaries concerning the subject of enlightenment were expressed. My publisher set up a blog page on my website (livingnonduality org) and the more succinct queries were often responded to there. In other instances, I sent my reply by mail.
The monographs printed in this volume include such correspondences with people on nonduality and are an expansion on the material published four years ago; a few of the selections are those for which there wasn’t room in my previous book; and a few others are akin to journal entries. All of them relate to various aspects of nondual realization.
Each, in its own way, is a letter to you.
Selected from the book as an introduction here:
The condition from which all forms appear is from the timeless and unlimited formless presence. This Absolute condition was existent before your particular form arose and will continue to persist after your material form has dis-integrated. It is the source from which the cosmos arose. Your material form, or organism, is a product of this same source, or Intelligence. Your brain is a product of this source. Hence, your thoughts and actions owe their manifestation to this ultimate actuality. Thus, the teachings instruct, “You are not the Doer.”
When one recognizes that “all that’s being done, is That doing what it does,” it becomes clear that (from the ultimate standpoint) all which is unfolding is an unprecedented, spontaneous development of the Omnipresent manifesting as, and through, every immediate occurrence. From the vantage point of the Absolute, it makes no difference what occurs, since there is no confinement to a finite consequence. Regardless how the individual organism may evaluate each occurrence, in the final analysis it makes no difference.
This nondual perspective of non-attachment is reminded to us each night, in our deepest sleep. We return to a condition of empty awareness in which the self-perception disappears, all relative interests disappear, the world disappears, the cosmos disappears. In that unperturbed awareness, there is an emptiness which is choiceless and in which nothing really matters.
For those who realize the implications of the nondual teachings, the fact that ultimately nothing really matters is carried over into one’s waking awareness and daily life.
It is also clear that while we are embodied in this material form and continue to function in the relative world, the dualistic perspective (rather than the nondual awareness) is the state of mind which pertains for most persons—who are typically not prepared to hear that their “self” has no meaning in the ultimate sense.
It’s probably not surprising that such teachings were once kept secret. However, they’re not secret anymore, and can lead to a life-changing perspective, or Consciousness.
If you have questions about what you read, please see the contact information at the end of the book.
- Publication Date:
- 193790217X / 9781937902179
- Page Count:
- Binding Type:
- US Trade Paper
- Trim Size:
- 5.5" x 8.5"
- Black and White
- Related Categories:
- Self-Help / Personal Growth / Happiness