Sunday, November 8, 2009

Can you find Awareness?

What is the location for Awareness?  Where is it located?  Can you find it?  Can you put your finger on it? 

Awareness is undeniably there, yet it's not anywhere in particular.  It's everywhere.  It's everything.  Is this a mystical experience?  Is this a new state?  No.  It's already the case, only it's taken as "ME-seeing-world".  Awareness is the nondual reality, the present state of affairs, however it's being translated as a subject seeing an object.

If you had to locate Awareness, you wouldn't be able to point to anything in particular, because Awareness encompasses everything, every single experience, every feeling, every thought, the slightest sensation, the most subtle perception.

If you point to the wall, you're pointing to Awareness, so to speak.  The wall doesn't exist outside of Awareness.  The finger which is pointing is in Awareness.  The one who is pointing is also objective within Awareness.  Isn't this rather obvious?  It's almost silly to have to point it out - it's the most primary, fundamental and obvious aspect of reality - the entirety of that so-called individual is an appearance IN this Awareness, which pervades and shines unconditionally, unfettered, unaffected.

If we had to say what we are, ultimately, we might notice the obviousness of this bright and ever-present presence, this space of knowing, this solid block of nondual reality which we intimately know as "awareness".

You cannot find it conceptually because you ARE it.  Yet wherever you look, there it is.  Any appearance, any experience is nothing BUT that limitless Awareness that you are.  Yet to speak of appearances, we are still operating in duality and requiring a witness or awar-er of the appearance, requiring the appearance to be other than the witness.  Therefore the witness and appearance are provisional understandings and are ultimately discarded.

Awareness is then recognized to be all there is - subject and object are realized as taking Awareness to be split up - this is something the mind does naturally and is not inherently problematic.  But when that subject is seen to be separate from the object, when that subject is seen as an independently-existing entity, the constant and compulsive self-reference brings suffering.

When we recognize that Awareness has never been lost, never obscured, never the result of spiritual experiences or practices - when we recognize that each perception IS that Awareness that you are, then every experience is enlightenment, every appearance is a miracle.  Then the mind carries on but that binding nature of thought is dissolved.  The urge to apply experiences to a self-reference falls away naturally.  Awareness shines as it always has, but it's known to be your own true essence.

Yet the instant it is searched for, the simplicity and obviousness of this space-like presence of Awareness has been missed, overlooked.  Yet even the overlooking, the seeking, the ignorance of your true Self is irrelevant, because the search itself takes place as a series of thoughts, experiences and ideas within THAT which is being sought after.

Nothing at all is required to be what you already are.  THIS, right here and now, is IT.  THIS, right here and now, is Awareness itself, nondual reality, one without a second, Advaita.  It isn't difficult to find.  It's inescapable. 

21 comments:

narinder said...

yes

this indeed is the paradox

what is ever present

takes so much effort to come into awareness !

Meditation is the Way to de-eclipse this awareness

narinder_bhandari@yahoo.co.in

Anonymous said...

I meditated for 20 years ala Mahrishi Mahesh Yoga. All I got was a sore butt!

Dennis said...

Its like awareness pouring into awareness!
Thanks Randall!

Anonymous said...

Randall,

When everything appears in the "I", why cannot that one "I" or oneness choose to change any appearances within it ?

Thanks

Randall Friend said...

Dennis,

Hello again my friend. Love to you.

Randall Friend said...

Anonymous,

To ask why can't the "I" change the appearance, is to imply the "I" is apart from or separate from the appearance.

What chooses to spin the earth around the sun? What chooses to beat the heart and pump the blood? These are all going on just fine without any choice - therefore apparent choice is only in mind, in thought.

Instead of inquiring about oneness choosing, find out what this "I" really is. Then you can answer this question yourself - or find the question really has no meaning.

You already intimately know "I" - yet WHAT is "I" you do not know. You only know assumptions about "I" - identifications placed upon "I".

Why is it that "I" is so intimately known yet there is still a search for it?

We might be suddenly caught off guard, caught between two thoughts - we might be blindsided by the realization that this "I" is in fact the presence of changeless and limitless awareness. We may realize that this is what you were all along, only confusing limited ideas with your Self.

You are limitless - you have no boundaries, no size, no shape, no color. Nothing can be apart from what you are.

Simply discern between this pure "I" and the objective content. Body and thoughts are known to you, objectified BY you, after all.


love
randall

Anonymous said...

Randall,

My question came from an understanding that everything appears within this oneness. If thats the case, is this "I" or oneness the creator or controller of everything that appears in it ?

Pls shed some light

Thanks

Randall Friend said...

Anonymous,

Speaking of creation and control is to speak of the appearance from that level - a relative level. We must be speaking of a particular event or thing, which is either created or controlled.

This assumes the separate existence of that which is created or controlled. So to speak of it being created or controlled already assumes its existence as a thing or event, which assumes space and time as real.

It is mind which places this idea of "thingness" - separate thing-ness.

If there is nothing separate, there is nothing to create or control, yes?

That doesn't mean there isn't an appearance of things or events. But when we try to pin down what or who or how are these things or events being controlled, then we've already been spellbound by appearances, which is called Maya.

This applies also to your Self. The root thought is "I AM". "I AM" is the confirmation or certainty that you exist. Yet the mind, once again, places "thingness" and "event-ness" upon that "I AM" - in doing so it creates the idea that this "I AM" is particular, individual, personal, separate. It creates that "I AM" as a separate being, a person, and from there hangs the idea that this body-object and thought-object IS that "I AM".

From there we say "I AM hungry" or "I AM thinking". Hunger and thinking is appearance to you - it is applied or taken AS you, which it is not.

And from this most basic confusion of what is "I AM" or "I", the entire world is created - as the opposite of "I". As a thing, there must be all that is "not-I". So we can say the world is created - this is Maya once again. As a separate "I", I must admit to a separate world.

Yet that "I" is not the object-body or the object-thought. Both appear TO "I" - therefore we discern what IS "I" and what is "not-I" fully - we unwrap this identification with the body and mind as the "I" and come to find the "I" is in fact awareness or knowing.

And awareness or knowing is found to be not limited - it has no width, no height, no dimensions whatsoever. It is not objective - it is YOU - that presence which is always-here.

And as a limitless presence, it is found to encompass the body, thoughts, and world. We say these "things" are IN awareness but it's not that awareness is the container and the things are IN it.

That computer screen you are seeing - how far is it from awareness? You assume distance because of space, yet fail to notice that even space you objectify - space is also IN awareness - how far from awareness is space?

Both are zero distance from awareness. If you see the computer screen, you are noticing only awareness. Every experience IS your Self, my friend.


love
randall

Anonymous said...

Thanks Randall ! Your explanation is clearest.

This does not leave any choice for the mind to imagine what "i" is.

It goes back to your earlier discussion on "Neti Neti" - neither this or that.

Thanks a lot again !

Lune said...

Hi Randall,

Following Takuin's beautiful example, I have created a meme called 'The End, The Beginning: A Silent Post'.

I have tagged you because, I know this is slightly off-topic, but I would love to see 'your' thoughts about the End and the Beginning without using words.

Please follow this link to find the full instructions: http://blogwithoutaname.com/a-silent-post

Lune x

“What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.”
- T.S. Eliot

benjamin said...

Hi Randall,

Perhaps you do not react on older posts, but since time is awareness only it shouldn't make difference ;)

"Then the mind carries on but that binding nature of thought is dissolved."

This quote is most interesting. Some would say the problem of duality resides in the "belief in thought".

But that leads to the (relevant?) question: What is the biding nature of thought?
What can it bind if there is not-two? What is belief? What gives meaning to thought?

This point remains obscure to me, i feel the (legitimate?) need to see that as i feel it is what feeds the sense of duality which keeps "coming back" again and again.

Thanks.
B.

Randall Friend said...

Benjamin,

If there is not-two, then even "thought" is a concept. Meaning is a concept. Belief is a concept. If there is not-two, what can possibly be described without projecting duality where there is none?

Can even an individual in search of meaning or understanding of duality be anything but a projection or imagination?

The reality of this moment holds no duality. World and Self are only conceptual divisions. Experience and experiencing are ways of talking about it yet in doing so it seems to indicate actual separate things.

See if there is an actual division between Self and World, instead of trying to get answers to questions which assume the split as real.


love
randall

benjamin said...

Thanks Randall. I feel i may have asked my question the wrong way. I am not assuming there is a thought which is separate from manifestation, just as concept and belief are manifestations.
As you say the individual is yet another idea, assumption from which the idea of seeking or understanding duality ensues.

What i am asking is rather the following: if there is no fundamental difference between thought and non-thought, between insight and non-insight, then how come there seem to be moments of clarity and moments of confusion. What is so "binding" or "blinding" in manifestation-as-thought to cause awareness not to know itself as such but as a limited appearance? And if a thought is required to provide meaning to thought, then we have a regreso ad infinitum. How can meaningfulness occur to awareness if it is one and alone?
Or does my question make assumptions?

Randall Friend said...

Benjamin,

All questions are due to assumptions.

Are there thoughts? Where does a thought start and end? What is a thought made of? All you truly know is a bundle of various sensations which have been given a name and therefore a meaning or reality.

The body is the same. The body is a concept, taking passing sensations and applying a concept, a name, a label, a projected meaning and reality.

All you truly know is that sensations are happening, and you remain as that which is aware of sensations. What these sensations are is entirely the domain of the conceptual.

Experiences are there - along with experiencing itself. If we were to draw a line between experience and experiencing, what side of the line would you be on? Obviously you would be on the side of experiencing, because experience is objective to you.

Now see that this line is imaginary. What we call "experience" or "object" and what we call "awareness" or "subject" are truly one and the same reality.

It is in the calling them of something which seems to create their independence. It is in this projection or imagination which creates the "individual" who IS aware.

The entire life story washes down the drain. All that remains is this indescribable IS-ness, which was never separate to begin with.

There is no answer in the mind, my friend. There is no need to look there. Simply notice that you are present and aware - the formless subject - nothing objective can describe you. You do not come and go with the objective. Then notice the absolute oneness of what we call "subject" and "object".

It isn't hidden. It's literally staring you in the face, right now.


love
randall

benjamin said...

Thanks Randall,

It sounds like what i needed to hear.

raj444 said...

Hi Randall

suggest me some good books on consciousness/awareness.

Thanks

Raj

benjamin said...

Raj,

ANY book would do in fact. Awareness is not to be found in books, books are to be found in awareness.

Regards,
B.

raj444 said...

Hi Benjamin

I agree with you.

Have you gone through any books of that is trying to point the dissolution of the false/illusionery 'I'.

Can you please tell where i can get them.

Thanks

Raj

benjamin said...

Raj,

Well obviously there is Randall's (http://avastu0.blogspot.com/p/book.html) and there is Nisargadatta Maharaj's I AM THAT (http://www.amazon.com/Am-That-Talks-Sri-Nisargadatta/dp/0893860220) and there is Scott Kiloby's work (check www.kiloby.com) as well as Tony Parson's Open Secret. All are available online.
Didn't read them all though. For me reading books makes things more confusing, it only confirms the idea that one needs to read and aggregate knowledge in order to be free. There is no false "i", and if you really want to be free or find truth, i'd advise to forget about such assumptions. It's not because some people with an enlightened gaze say the I is an illusion that you should take their word for it. If the I they talk about is an illusion, then so are they an illusion too, and why would you listen to what an illusion has to say? :)
What i mean is: drop all these assumptions and observe the facts, don't trust anyone to tell you what is real or not, what you are and what you are not. You are the question and the answer, follow your gut-feeling.

Take care,
B.

raj444 said...

Will anyone be able to answer me this question?

Just try to understand my question and do not escape it through your play of worlds...Randall I am also referring to you...
The question is :
EVERYONE IS BLAMING THE MIND...THAT IT IS PROJECTION THE ILLISIONS...IT IS MANKING CONCEPTS...IT IS KEEPING US IN IGNORANCE...MAKING US DREAMING...IS NOT LETTING US AWAKE...BOSS>> 2.WHERE IS THE MIND? 2.WHY IS HE SO BLAMED? 3.EVEN IN BHAGAVAT GITA..KRISHNA SAYS 'THE MIND CANNOT BE CONTROLLED? 4.IS THERE REALLY A MIND? 5.IF NO,WHY SAYING MIND THIS MIND THAT?

Randall Friend said...

Raj,

Look from your own actual experience. What you call "mind" is really thought. What you call "thought" is really just patterns forming, patterns which you require additional knowledge to translate. So you have raw data, raw patterns which appear - this is mind.

Therefore mind is an appearance - the parallel translation that happens within the fact of immediate knowledge - knowledge which is always there and prior to the translation of mind.

You are present - cognition happens immediately and spontaneously and after the fact mind comes in and translates experience. But mind is part of the experience itself - mind IS a translation of experience - to call it "mind" is to have a translation in place.

There is nothing wrong with mind - in fact the existence of mind is only a concept. There is no need of controlling mind - only see it for what it is and the bond is broken.

To speak of mind is really to speak of something which has it's own existence. There is no such thing as something with a separate existence. Look into the nature of existence and see if you can find where it begins and ends. It is only the form which takes shape and dissolves. Form is a concept. Mind is a form.


love
randall