No spiritual inquiry required

Eye in the sky

Eye in the sky

Yesterday I wrote about the value of spiritual inquiry.  How it’s possible to realize layers of truth.  What was true for us yesterday may not be true today.  When our body contracts it’s often signalling that we’re perhaps following an old truth. The fresh truth waits for us to greet it.

Inquiry helps us explore our conditioning.  It can assist us in seeing more clearly.  It can be helpful at different junctures, assisting us in removing our blinders of limited perception.

On the other hand, inquiry can be conceptualized into a technique which keeps us more identified as a separate self.  I have seen this in my own inquiry.  It can create an effect that the questioning person is actually separate from the whole of flowing life.  It can attempt to cement a belief that “this is my life” or “I am trying to fix my life” or “I need to get rid of my conditioning” or “I need to understand” or “If I just get rid of what I don’t like about myself or others, I will be Okey-Dokey.”

What seems clear–in this moment–is that sometimes Life wants to inquire and sometimes Life has no desire to inquire. Sometimes the Universe wants to explore our conditioning as a separate self, and other times it’s just gobbledygook. Sometimes no intellectual understanding is required.  Sometimes it’s not even helpful.

In another instance, there may be resistance to inquiry.  Sometimes that resistance signals the need for inquiry–what is being resisted and why?  In another instant, no resistance surfaces.  This can be a very subtle art, listening to the winds of the Universe, can’t it?

Sometimes a negative expression comes out from another person.  It’s no big deal.  Ahhh, Life is expressing this negativity through this apparently separate individual.  No contraction from a sense of self that doesn’t want to contract.  The practice of inquiry, as a religion or inclination, does not arise.  It’s simply what it is.  No need to make it into a six-hour search to discover the roots of truth and honesty.  Next moment, please.

It is fascinating to watch this.  If we’re attached to either inquiry or not-inquiry, we may suffer.  If we allow Life to inquire or not-inquire, it’s just endless flow.  One minute we’re exploring depths of what’s true–in this moment.  The next moment we can’t even find the energy to even try.  It doesn’t even make sense.

The Universe doesn’t have anything against the separate self, against conditioning.  It IS expressing itself infinitely in a trillion forms.  It embraces itself unconditionally.

(You can inquire about that or drop it like a hot potato.  Life will do what it wants anyway.  It will say, “This is wrong!” or “This is right!” and wink at itself as it passes by.  A new truth presents itself, or it doesn’t.)

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How do you explain awakeness?

Our creations

Our creations

When you’ve glimpsed what you really are…how do you explain to another person who passionately wants that glimpse?

During the times I’ve felt most awake words seem ridiculous.  To write a single thought seems impossible.  Nothing could articulate “this-ness”.  To even begin to summarize places one squarely back in the world of dream, of imagination.

Whatever one says is empty.  Empty of truth, empty of reality.  Buddha insisted even the Dharma–the sacred teachings–were empty.

Putting anything in concepts and beliefs and thoughts somehow feels like sand falling through open fingers.

And yet, what do you say to someone suffering, someone passionately wanting that glimpse of awakeness?

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Waking up, round two

As many of you long-time readers know I experienced an awakening three to four years ago.  It blew the socks off this personality temporarily.  One minute a Kathy drove the car and the next minute…something I later called “It” drove the car.

The personality metaphorically took the back seat.  Something so alive and rich and textured and appreciative and responsive took the front seat.  It thrilled in the color of the road signs, the shape of trees, the curve of the creek, the immediacy of the waitress smile.  It sipped wine, it chatted with husband, it laughed, it cried, it did whatever arose.  And it was beyond good.

However, the personality simultaneously protested in the background like a mis-firing engine, “What?  What’s happening?  I’m dying!  Help me!  Nothing is the same!  Help!  Help!”

The identification with personality began to stick and come unglued for the next three weeks, stick and unglue, stick and unglue.  It began to feel like a violent roller-coaster of delight and despair. Over and over again the roller coaster rose and plummeted until suddenly, very definitively, the personality cemented itself back together.

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Waking up

Here

I will tell you what happened earlier this week.

Because the telling is the same as the receiving.

Because someone asked.

Because.

I sat in meditation, a solid person, thinking “I” was a solid person.

Somewhere in the meditation, in the inquiry which demanded “What am I?”, in the inquiry which saw the space as alive, as real, something shifted.

In that shift everything shifted.

In that shift, “I” became everything perceived.

The drilling woodpecker, the hum of my husband’s voice, the refrigerator’s motor.  The desk, the table, the carpeting.

“I” am it all.

“I” am nothing.

In that moment, laughter arose.

Of course.

We know who we are in every moment.  We are everything, everything, yes everything!  But we limit ourselves to a certain human perspective, a certain association with body or mind, a certain cutting away.

Later, it all blurs. 

I am an individual again.  Back in a body.  Thinking a self exists.

Dreaming a no-self exists.

What is real?  What is dream?  What beckons beyond self, individuality, humanity, laughter, reality?

If I could tell you, this blog would chuckle. 

This blog would guffaw.

This blog would grin.

But I can’t tell you–can’t tell you anything–and therefore you must look at yourself and determine if your solidity makes dinner tonight; if it catches a glimmer of moonlight before you fall asleep in between your shifting sheets.