Thursday, March 16, 2017

Rupert Spira - The Absolute Certainty Of Awareness


 

Questioner: The only way awareness ever manifests in my experience is in connection with some object, or thought, or..., 
I know I'm aware only when there is something I'm aware 'of'.
Rupert: No.
Q: No?

Rupert: If I ask you now "Are you aware?" where do you go?, what do you say?
Questioner: Yes

Rupert: Where do you go? In order to find that yes, you have to go somewhere.
If I say to you "Is it a blue sky outside?" You look. You go there, you come back and you say "yes", because it's your experience.
You don't go back to what your parents told you,.
You don't go back to what you read in a book.
You go to your experience. Where do you go?
Where do you go, to come back with this absolute certainty of ‘Yes, I am aware’.

Q: (silence)
Rupert: Did you go to the sensations at the soles of your feet, and say, "They're tingling, I must be aware?"

Q: No, I get your point. I just experience being aware.
Rupert: okay. What is it that experiences it?
Q: (silence)

Rupert: You’re right. You go to the experience of being aware. Who has that experience?
What has that experience?
Q: I can only say Awareness itself.

Rupert: Perfect. Now, what does Awareness have to do to be aware of itself?
Q: (silence)

Rupert: Does it have to go and visit a mind?
Q: No. No, it doesn't do anything. It's always aware of itself, it feels like.

Rupert: Perfect. It's always aware of itself, by itself, through itself, as itself, in itself.
It doesn't need a puny little human mind to be aware of itself.
It's nature is to be aware.
It is pure knowing, aware Being.
It doesn't need the agency of a mind or a body to know itself.

Q: So, this is where it sounds a little dual(istic) to me. It becomes like there is awareness, and then there is body,mind.

Rupert: You’re right. At this stage, in order to focus our attention on the nature of awareness, we are, slightly artificially, separating awareness out from the body, mind, world. We’re putting the body, mind, world on one side; putting what we are aware OF on one side, in order to just be able to focus on awareness.

So the value of doing this, precisely, is to arrive at the experience we have just arrived at: that it is awareness that is aware of itself, by itself.

Now, having just made this discovery, the second stage is to go back to the objects of the body, mind, world that we have, rather artifically, put over here, out of the way; and to ask the question, ‘Ok, now, what is my relationship ...’ (‘my’ now refers to ever-present, unlimited awareness), ‘What is the relationship of ever-present, unlimited awareness to these apparent objects of the body,mind world?’

Then we see, from the point of view of Awareness, (that) Awareness doesn't experience the objects of the body/mind world as separate from itself.

That was just a petigogical step, which the teaching takes, in order to focus on our essential nature. Having done that, we have to abandon that approach, because it is a limiting..., a dualistic, approach. We then come back to the experience of the body, mind world and see, ‘Actually, I have never EXPERIENCED a world the way thought normally conceives it’. In other words, something made out of dead stuff called matter, that is at a distance from myself.

All I, Awareness knows, is the experience of seeing.
And the experience of seeing is Intimately pervaded by mySelf:
All I know of the world is the experience of seeing, hearing, tasting, touching and smelling.
All these are made out of the knowing of them.
I, Awareness, Am that knowing.

In other words, when I experience the so-called world, I'm just experiencing myself.

I don't experience 'a world', 'an object', 'a self', 'a body'.
Experience, for Awareness, is much more intimate than that.

~
So, first we separate awareness from it's objects, in order to spend some time exploring the nature of awareness, and then we collapse the distinction. (In fact, we don't collapse the distinction, because it was never really there).

But we see that experience is not inherently divided into these two parts: a subject (awareness) and the objects (the body,mind world).

It is not two: no subject and no object. That is your experience.

Look around you now. What do you know of a room, or a world now?

The experience of seeing? and hearing? and touching? yes?
Q: Yes.

Rupert: Go into the experience of seeing, and hearing and touching.
Do you find anything there other than the knowing of them?
Q: No

Rupert: That knowing is yourSelf.

All you find of a body,mind world are the experience of thinking, sensing, and perceiving.
And all we know of thinking, sensing and perceiving are the knowing of them.

You are that knowing.

You only ever know, or come in contact with, yourself.

~ ~ ~ ~
That's what the experience of beauty, or love, is.
You know when you walk in nature, and feel completely overwhelmed by the beauty of it?
What's happening then?
Of course, we don't rationalize it to ourselves; but what's happening in that moment is that
the separate subject and the separate object are collapsing,
and we feel totally melted in the landscape. You feel totally at one with everything, yes?
That is a collapse of the self that sees, and the object that is seen.

The experience of love is the same.
When you fall in love, do you not feel that you kind of lose yourselves in each other?
I don't just mean falling in love; the experience of love, of friendship?
You feel one, intimate, close.

It's the collapse of the subject / object relationship.

In other words, you, the separate self, is plunging into its true nature.
Drowning in it's true nature.
And tasting life as it really is.

When the mind comes back again, it says, ‘I love You’,
because that's the only language the mind knows.
‘That object is beautiful.’ No, objects are not beautiful. People are not loveable.
Only the Self, Infinite Awareness, is truly beautiful or loveable.

All love is only for the Self.

Q: And I recognize that experience completely; walking in the forest, and there is only happiness.
Rupert: Yes.
Q: and then someone says to me, "Oh, you did it wrong" or "you made a mistake" or "you look stupid" and boom, I'm there. Not the I of Awareness. But Ernest. Then what do I do?

Rupert: Go back to the forest (laughter).

Q: Yeah?
Rupert: Yeah. I mean it. Because when you're in the forest, you're having satsang. That's what satsang is. You're having satsang with nature. And this is the power of nature. It's why we love nature, it's why we love animals, it's why we have pets.

When you're in nature, nature is taking you, effortlessly and spontaneously to this place, to this place-less place.
And as you say, you find yourself there naturally. It's not that You feel one with it. I understand why you say that, but there is no You there anymore. It's just one seemless intimate whole.

Then you come back to town, and your friend or a person says to you, "Yeah, you're 3/4 of an hour late."
Q: Very realistic, yeah.

Rupert: And immediately, you seem to contract back into that separate self again.

So just keep going back to satsang; that is, to whatever it is that takes you (not intellectually or theoretically but takes you in your actual experience) to your true nature.
Keep going back there again and again and again... until this habit of being that, knowingly, becomes stronger and stronger and stronger; until a day comes when you walk back into town, you're 1/2 hour late for work, your boss yells at you, and it no longer has the capacity to persuade you that you are a separate self. You hear your boss, you apologize for being late, you tell your excuse about the traffic, you just go to work; but you don't lose the intimacy of your own Being.

And then you can practice this in more and more difficult circumstances.

And life very often presents us with more and more difficult circumstances. You know? Your girlfriend starts flirting with the next door neighbor, and then it gets really, really difficult. That has the capacity to make you feel like a very separate person again. (laughter). Then she starts having an affair with the neighbor; then it gets even more difficult. So, bar gets raised.

At a certain point, you feel that nothing has the capacity to take you away from yourself, to persuade you again that you are a separate, limited self.

It doesn't mean that you don't feel, that you are no longer sensitive. Of course, you are.
But it becomes less and less possible for an event in the body, the mind or the world to persuade you to go back to the old way of thinking and feeling, and therefore reacting and relating, on behalf of a separate, limited self.

And you find, somehow, magically, although the world may give you some tests, the world will, in a magical way, meet you in your new feeling understanding. And your experience in the world will begin to reflect your new experience.

Somehow experience in the outside world will begin to shine..., will begin to dance, with the feeling that you have inside.

That's why I said at the beginning, the world appears as an inevitable counterpart to the way we understand awareness. If we think awareness is temporary and limited, somehow our experience in the world will confirm that. We will always be frustrated, and thwarted, in objects and people. And yet we will always be seeking happiness in objects and people.

But if we understand that what we essentially are is ever-present and unlimited, somehow magically the world will appear in accordance with that understanding.

And you will get little signs from the Universe that you are on the right track.

Q: Thank you. 


transcript thanks to Amaya Aum
 

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