Monday, June 29, 2009

Seeking THAT which was never lost

You are not a person. A person is a concept, like "mind" is a concept. There is no such thing as "mind" - mind is only a word used to contain present experiences - thoughts, memories, imagination.

The word "person" is only a concept, a conceptual container used to categorize the body, the personality, the life story, the memories and imagination, the image of ME, the constructed facade or persona, the ego, the propped-up "self", the store-front we call ME.

There is no such thing as a person - person is a concept - it's a belief, that there is someone separate, some entity abiding in that appearance of body-mind, some soul or independent life form...

The idea of ME-the-person comes from indoctrination, from society, the core belief in a bundle of beliefs issued to us at a young age, when we believed in things like "Santa Claus" and the tooth fairy.

The concept of "person" is ingrained and concrete - yet it falls away quite simply upon investigation.

The body is there, thoughts are there - but the "person" is like a ghost, like a phantom, not there in actuality but there under pretense - it's an assertion.... an assumption left unquestioned.

The instant it is questioned, there is doubt. It cannot be taken for granted. The "person" I took myself to be isn't as obvious as I thought. The "person" I took myself to be is only a learned belief. The "person" I took myself to be cannot be found.

The body is there. Thoughts are there. So what AM I? I am THAT which is looking, THAT which is knowing, THAT which is the ever-present openness or subjectivity or "awareness" - THAT has always been there - THAT isn't a "person" after all yet the idea of "person" comes in thought.


Aren't you here, right now? Yes. Yet YOU are NOT that body nor that mind. YOU are this activity of knowing - what is actually referenced by the word "I"...

You remain unmoved while the body and thoughts do their dance and disappear each night.

You do not think yet thoughts are known because of you.

You are not involved in the activities of the world yet the world cannot BE without YOU.

Once this idea of a separate "person" falls away, known to be a false belief, a mistaken identity, a belief in a dream - then what-you-are becomes blindingly obvious.

If we talk about "things", you are this no-thing-ness, prior to yet the space in which all "things" come and go.

If we recognize the illusory nature of "things" as only appearances - if we recognize that the subject/object equation is simply a translation, not actual reality - if we realize that the appearance and the knowing of the appearance are the SAME THING...

Then - you cannot be found apart from the world. You have lost your meaning, your identity. You have lost your entire life story. The "person" never was. Therefore the "seeker" never was.

And Oneness is no longer something to be sought after. Oneness is your actual Being.


James said...

Yes what you right is true. I remember one day going to school when I was about 8 I thought "sometimes i forget I am me!"

But so that I understand the what is going on in consciounsess I have a question. It is true that if we realize the truth of I and Reality we will be beyond mind and therefore the view of the world would be very different. At leats I can sympathetically appreciate that.

Yet there really are suffering beings. Is this consciousness working itself out with heirarchies of energy and beings and suffering. What is going on with all of that? I know from the point of view of Truth consciousness is as it should be. But there really are suffering beings in consciousness? Why should that be?
And from your point of view I assuem you see that conscuoiusness is perfect but what do you see if you see a conscious child suffering -- being beaten or raped or whatever. Even though you will see its all God - surely you must see that Being is not aware of that and is suffering. How does that seem to you? And is consciousness just workin itself out until all beings are moved beyond suffering and to realize the truth?

Anonymous said...

It is so easy to be caught up in non duality verbalisation and theories.
what can be seeing when seeing a child suffering,..being raped, punished?. My answer would be: -we see a child suffering, period. And if I see a dude raping a child, i am going to beat the sh** out of his butt. period.,...and everything will happen within conciousness, The child crying and the dude bledding like a pig after my beating. After this life will going on as always does.

True is simple.

Anonymous said...

Hey Randall,
I was trying to download your recent podcast from I-Tunes and it said "invalid account"... are you no longer working with I tunes?
Peace, from the "StoreFront" called Mark

Randall Friend said...


The post says the "person" is a belief only, a fiction - You say "what you write is true" - then go on to ask about persons or "beings" who will be beyond mind, who are suffering, who are the victims of violence, who sees it's all God, etc.

So from the perspective of Mind or Consciousness, of course these all are happening - of course we want to beat the shit out of some child killer - of course we have compassion for those who are suffering...

Yet like the dream, this is all made out of Consciousness - like the dream, the appearance isn't the reality. Within the dream, there are some true degenerates, some saints... yet the point is that what APPEARS TO BE isn't what IS.

Yet even within the dream, there are those who make this example of some suffering situations, like a child or a poverty or war-torn nation - yet this is always the smallest aspect of attention - only pulled out to make poignant arguments about nonduality or some bullshit. The majority of attention is paid to "my own suffering", which is generally minimal in comparison to these examples.

"My own suffering" is mostly about how some relationship failed or how some addiction can't be kicked or how the finances aren't great or how depressed "I am".

When the illusion of separateness is ceased to be reality - that child or victim of war or poverty is your VERY OWN SELF. It's not some peripheral compassion out of sympathy - it's the very heart being ripped out at the atrocities of this world.

Yet it's still just a dream. The dream can be anything - good, bad or ugly - yet it's simply a dream of Consciousness which comes and goes - YOU aren't the character participating IN the dream, you are the DREAMER - you are THAT which sees and knows the dream, watches the dream come, with it's violence and beauty, and pass away.


Randall Friend said...


Amen, brother. Again, within the dream of separateness, we all want to join you in kicking the shit out of this "dude" - this arbitrary example of the perverted and violent atrocities.

But look closely, what is the theory? Isn't this "relative reality" the theory?

Does THIS, right here and now, require any theories? Does the knowledge of your existence require a theory?

The idea of being a separate "person" is nothing BUT an unexamined theory. Nonduality is pointing to THIS before any theory.


Randall Friend said...


Hello again my friend.

I have no idea what is going on with iTunes and haven't got a clue how to fix it.

The podcasts should be downloadable from the blog - they will go on an ipod that way also, right?


Chris said...

Hey Randall

This is another fine post and I thank you for it.
There is still some confusion with:
'if we realize that the appearance and the knowing of the appearance are the SAME THING'
A part of me just can't stop seeing them as separate.I keep thinking that if I were unconscious for example,,that those objects 'out there', including this body, would still be there whether I am aware of them or not.This to me would indicate separation, as the objects and my awareness of them are not 'one'. I could see that the appearance appears to me when I am aware of them only, but not while I am in deep sleep however. The appearance would still be there for 'others' who are at the same place as myself, but who are not asleep. I realize that perhaps I am not expressing myself correctly but hope you see my point.

Oh and by the way, I just received your new book! Just read a few pages to date but so far I find it to be quite wonderful and clear just like your posts. Thank you so much for writing it! Looking forward to reading it all.



Randall Friend said...


Hello again my friend. Love to you.

What part sees them as separate?

Mind only.

Separation is a translation of THIS, a "ME-seeing".

There is an idea of ME - this clear and obvious and intimate knowledge of being or existence - THAT is translated in the mind as "I AM" - "I AM" is the knowledge that you ARE yet translated by mind it can only be "I AM this and that". I am some "thing" - body-mind.

So ME-seeing is this obvious "I AM"-ness tied up with the body-mind, and then further abstracted or translated as the body-mind separate FROM the world, seeing a world.

"I AM" is undeniable yet not a "thing". The body-mind is a thing. You are not.

In inquiry we may ask "Who AM I"? Maybe we ask "What IS 'I'"?

"I" is not the body-mind, separate from and seeing a world. "I" is the obvious knowledge of being, present right now, never requiring the concept of "I AM".

Therefore this idea of "ME-seeing" is known to be only a translation of THIS - there isn't anything wrong with the translation - any translation can come - when all translations are known to be just translations, what remains?

Just THIS.


Anonymous said...


This extrapolation below is based on a response by Ramana to a similar question....

Tell me one thing that exists that you have NEVER been aware of. Think about this.

Is that possible? Everything that you say 'exists' is something you have at some point been aware of - its so obvious! The act of observation implies existence and vice-versa. they are the same thing.

So - Do they 'exist out there' when u are in deep sleep? Depends what 'exist' means. The WTC doesnt exist anymore does it? If 'Exist' were to correctly mean EXIST NOW, then - Is it there NOW (when asleep)? no. So, things 'out there' when you are asleep is an assumption really. The state may arise again with the objects after you awake - the whole show comes and goes and comes....

And the 'other people' who can see those objects when you are asleep .... THEY don't exist in your sleep either, they come and go to you as well, and only give you evidence of existence AFTER you awake - when THEY themselves manifest again.

What is the common thread between your deep sleep and waking state? Not the objects out there, not the people out there. What stays continuous? Not your memories. what is it?

Randall Friend said...


Nicely put. Love to you.

Anonymous said...

Love to you too dear Randall. You are a true blessing.

Dayle said...

Whilst having a nanna nap this afternoon, I saw very cleary the illusion of the past. There is no past. Nothing ever happened.

As I recalled a strong memory from the past, (can’t recall which particular one – but it was a strong oft-repeated one) I realised that it only happened for ‘me’ and it happened in my mind. It was ‘my’ experience. Anyone else I recall being there probably doesn’t remember it. At it doesn’t matter anyway, because nothing actually happened. How can I explain this insight? The memory is an illusion, a dream of something that does not exist – except in my mind if I recall it. It was as if I could see it as a memory bubble that I have hung on to somehow give my life meaning. Add to the story of ‘me’.

These memories that are hung on to, that make up the story of who I believe myself to be, drive our habitual tendencies and behaviour patterns. They are not happening now, and never did actually happen. It never happened for any-one else either, because that other person and that old ‘me’ person does not exist.

I feel like a shadow puppet who has been running scared of the shadow all my life. Believing both the shadow and the puppet to be me.

And what is there then? Nothing – no thing to adhere to, no person, no history, just a whole seeming sequence of events that were seen. That are not happening now.

I know the words to say – that others use to describe non-duality - but they don’t explain the actuality. I can’t explain it. It’s impossible to relive, recreate, or describe….Everything happened for Me in my mind, and right now, none of it ever happened.

Chris said...

Thank you so much Randall and Anonymous!

I'm going to have to sit with this for a while and re-read your replies.

What stays constant in deep sleep and waking state? The 'I Am'? The awareness? Though in deep sleep that state does not seem to be there at all. Just nothingness.
Like I said, I'll have to 'think' about this some more.

So I'm off in a café to read Randall's book now. Will stay in touch.

Again thank you very much!


Scarfox said...

Who can explain this quote by Nisaragatta? very troubling, we are told we are being and he says this " [The supreme state] is not perceivable, because it is what makes perception possible. It is beyond being and not being. It is neither the mirror nor the image in the mirror. It is what is - the timeless reality, unbelievably hard and solid."

beyond being?!, and what the heck is non-being.

RB said...

Knowing/seeing/awareness: 'objects, concepts, sense feelings, come and go.' This duality is all one with KNOWING as there can be no experiencing without KNOWING; it's impossible as there is only KNOWING, then mind. Behind 'this' is timeless/eternal spaceless-ness that IS. Meaningless and silent. The ultimate reality. There are no pointers really; (We can try) one continuess, inseparable, ISNESS but NOT!

Anonymous said...

i wish i was dead

Anonymous said...

Who you Are encompasses both Life and Death,, there's No Entrance Or Exit....From one who had attempted suicide..... Let yourself Hit the WALL...ya might go right through it.

PS: Randall, My Friend... I received a gift certificate for my B-Day to "Borders Books",, Is your book available there?

PPS:I-Tunes still has you listed as an invalid account.

Randall Friend said...


The mind will never find the answer. Taking hold of a concept and then trying to figure it out is the usual, habitual, obsessive activity of the mind.

This quote says - the supreme state is not perceivable, because it is what makes perception possible.

So if a concept about being or not being comes - what is the basis by which these concepts are known?

Can you perceive perception? Can you see the seeing?


Randall Friend said...


Yes - well said.


Randall Friend said...


Hello again my friend.

I don't know if the book is available at Borders - and the iTunes thing is similarly a mystery.