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midniterider

Non Dual Awareness

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So no worries about life after death since I was never really born in the first place. I am without beginning and without end.

 

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I've tried talking about what she's saying. Most people don't get it. Some do. 

 

Whatever existence is, it's not something with a fixed beginning or end. If we exist, we are necessarily existence itself in that direct way. The births, the experiences, the deaths, and the rebirths are all existence itself going through the experiences over and over again.

 

In that way, seeing through the usual ego identification and going down to the source material, which is existence itself formed into what we see in the mirror, it was never born and we were never born if we're willing to look that far into our identity. I've held focus on this before and it can become overwhelming when you allow yourself to identify with the whole instead of the part. I had some what of a traumatic experience one evening when I became stuck on being existence itself and having never actually "begun." I wound up having a jerk myself back into "reality" moment, because it felt as if I was going to dissolve into the whole, and at that point in time it was frightening and my survival reaction was to reject it and jolt myself back into ego consciousness. It was an interesting experience. 

 

But going forward, I accepted the reality of existing and how that relates to existence itself - the implications that necessarily go along with existing. 

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(NOTE: I'm going to try to keep this coherent, but since it's both a very compelling set of ideas to me, and I don't have the benefit of real-time back/forth in convo with anyone, it may seem a bit disjointed and ramble-y. Please forgive me. Or not.)

I've always been attracted to a few different ideas; one being that everything which exists in this material world emanates from something, and has a common source. We are "stardust", "billion-year-old carbon", as Joni Mitchell so aptly put it, even if her math was wrong. ;)

 

I love the idea that the source of everything is impersonal - that explains why evolution and all the other biological processes we can observe are seemingly only randomly beneficial to humankind. We are at the mercy of the natural world, and we benefit from it, just like every other living thing.

 

Along with the impersonal Source of everything, there are also personalities - yes, each of us is just a functioning carbon-based organism, but there is also the intangible nature of "personhood" - the thing that trips everyone up when it comes to life-support machinery, etc. When is a person "there"? Are they "alive" because their brain is still functioning without aid of support, even though they no longer speak, interact, seemingly sense anything that we can gauge?

 

Yes, there's Ego - the false notion of the separately-individual self; think of a basketball team. There are individual players, but they must also have a unified identity, no one player emphasizing and insisting upon their own gain and superiority at the expense of the team's success. Each player is, at one and the same time, an individual self/ego AND an indivisible part of a whole that rises or falls together. Of course, the different players have different tasks, differing skill sets and levels of ability, but each has the goal of self-improvement in mind, which is also unavoidably team improvement. No one can truly gain in skill and ability if their efforts are not directed at being useful and beneficial to the entire team.

 

I believe that we must both recognize our absolute connection with/sameness with all other living things AND our individual roles, much like trees give and take carbon dioxide and oxygen. The process is necessary both to the existence of the tree and the existence of other living things that benefit from what the tree does not need.

 

My goal in this life is to navigate the unique struggles, challenges, obstacles and questions that are before me - situations that are unique in detail, perhaps, but also having qualities which every person's situations possess. For instance, I am considered a nice-looking man by some, and I am considered witty and intelligent - characteristics that make for currency in romantic pursuits. I am also dealing with physical issues and health problems - things that offset or negate in some ways my physical attractiveness. It thus  behooves me to ask daily how I can improve myself physically and in terms of my health, but also to ask daily how I can make my mind, attitude and outlook more positive, relegating my physical appearance to a far-less-significant place in my own (and others') estimation of me.

 

In my growing awareness of my essential oneness with all things and people, I am trying to judge less, understanding that this material world is full of sense-pleasures that trick us into believing in our separate individuality, promoting selfishness and greed.

 

For instance, it might feel luxurious and decadent to eat your favorite ice-creams and rich foods all day long, every day, but the resultant issues with your health would be coupled with increasing addiction to those foods and the sensations they bring - think of Gollum and the One Ring; the attraction to it was delightful at first, then more and more powerful, forcing him to forego relationships, well-being and empathy in an effort to keep his "precious" all for himself.

 

There is so much more that can be said about the idea of the essential unity of all things - imagine if each of us embraced that idea; we could start to see so many other issues in sharper relief, making us more aware of our interconnected existence.

 

Is it possible that "spirituality" is really just the pull of our essential unity, calling us away from ego-self desires and drives, and that there are stories, ideas, philosophies that can illustrate the truth of oneness and teach us about how to seek a deeper awareness of our unity?

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9 hours ago, L.B. said:

Is it possible that "spirituality" is really just the pull of our essential unity, calling us away from ego-self desires and drives, and that there are stories, ideas, philosophies that can illustrate the truth of oneness and teach us about how to seek a deeper awareness of our unity?

 

I think so. When that interconnection is personified and taken literally as a personal god, that tends to negate the spiritual outlook. When someone is thinking in terms of one true god, one true people, spirituality has pretty much gone out the window. That's an ego trip in and of itself. And that's why we see so many christians who are nothing more than elitist egos. It a religious that allows for people who are basically not spiritual at all, to feel as if they are part of a spiritual community. It's a sort of psuedo-spiritual tradition in that way. When people don't understand this aspect of christianity it's easy to fall back into it if they start feeling like atheism is empty or devoid of meaning. But understanding this clearly, ought to result in knowing better than to turn back to christianity when purpose and meaning becomes a struggle. 

 

Tossing organized religions and simply focusing on our personal consciousness, individuality and greater interconnection in the grand scheme seems a much better way of navigating these waters. The experience she's talking about in the video, I think comes from the ability in people to self recognize their place in the scheme of existence. You don't even have to meditate. You can logically deduce everything she said by just thinking on these issues. And I think that's why the "mystical realization" pops up so much in so many cultures. It's nothing more than a waking up and self recognition. Expressed in the Upanishads as, "I am that." 

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