New Delhi: This is the 100th post! I feel like I should celebrate, I’m a blogger centenarian! But still a youngster, I think. Many bloggers are much older than me. So, what’s going on here? This blog is about the Buddha’s teachings, Advaita Vedanta, non-duality. I went public on July 6th, 2012 and I’ve been putting up new posts every three days, mostly, since that time. Now it’s ‘The One Hundredth’, and I was going to use that title for this post but it’s been used already – the 100th in the TV series: ‘Friends.’ The dhammafootsteps blog is, of course, about reaching out to friends, but the discussion is about just being ‘here.’ We’re all here in our various states of being, in different parts of the world; in different time zones and we’re all individually contemplating our own experience of being ‘here.’ Blogging is a good medium for this kind of thing because, just being ‘here’ is what everybody is talking about or describing, one way or another – isn’t it?
Here’s something from: Beyond The Dream: ‘…the awareness that looked out of our eyes as a five year old is the awareness that’s looking out of our eyes now.’ When I read that sentence it had a curious effect; there was an instant understanding of what being ‘here’ means. Then the next thought was, what is ‘the awareness’? And it’s a good question, that one, you can just go on asking it…. It’s like trying to understand sati-sampajañña, clear comprehension; what does that mean? And maybe I’m off somewhere searching for the meaning of clear comprehension, overlooking the fact that all the confusion is still there in my head. So, I’ll never find clear comprehension that way, because every time I think I’ve found it, the confusion just jumps up in its place. Eventually I realize clear comprehension means understanding the confusion. It has to be that way; clear comprehension of the confusion, and not some kind of desired state of clarity that doesn’t exist. The confusion is, I can’t see reality because I’m too engaged with the idea of it.
In the West we suffer from the creator-god condition; God made the world so the world and God are two separate things. I see the world from some impossible place outside of it; I’m on shaky ground here, in control mode, there’s the paranoia of thinking I can’t let it go and the fear of having to hold on indefinitely. All the clutter and stuff and mental goings-on and stumbling over all the indistinct, half-seen, misunderstood truths – believing that this is what life is about. Not able to see that it just doesn’t matter what kind of story is showing on the screen, it’s all fiction, created by the mind, arising and ceasing, dependent on causes and conditions and the karmic outcome of past events.
The mind doesn’t create awareness, mind is contained in the awareness. It’s something like, awareness is there, I just think I can’t see it. Thinking I can’t see it, is another mind moment that exists temporarily in the awareness. Being here is about getting to know everything there is to know about what that means….
Excellent post Tiramit! I loved this “The mind doesn’t create awareness, mind is contained in the awareness.” That perfectly sums it up. It’s funny I’ve been toying with the ‘being aware of awareness’ meditation practise and it’s a challenge, because there’s seemingly nothing to grab hold of with the mind. My vedanta teacher says awareness is subtler than the mind, but it can be experienced as a kind of reflection in a still mind. Which is why in deep meditation we can get a kind of effortless fix on pure awareness/being and melt into it. When the mind tries to chase after it it’s like a dog chasing its tail. It’s always there, it can’t not be there — and it’s EVERYTHING, literally, everything we experience is in awareness. It’s just so close and all-pervading virtually everyone (all the ‘normals’ at least! ;)) miss it.
Yes, it can’t not be there, as you say, and there are moments that occur when you see just this stillness, unreachable; and yes, ‘being aware of awareness’ is the way to go. The problem is directing my attention towards that end – story of a dog chasing its own tail. So there’s an indirect approach that’s got my attention and I’m going that way now; contemplating what that might be….
From James Swartz’s website, thought you might like this. It was a huge lightbulb moment for me:
–When you experience something you believe that what you are experiencing is something other than yourself. But when you investigate the nature of the object that you experience and its relationship to you, the subject, you find that there is no difference.
–Could you give me an example?
–Sure. Where do you experience that tree?
–Over there by the house.
–Wrong. You experience it in your awareness. Stimuli come from the tree and pass through your eyes and are recorded in your awareness.
–You are correct. I just spoke without thinking.
–OK. Now, answer this question.
–How far is your awareness from the tree?
–Yes, is there a gap between your awareness and the tree appearing in it?
–No. The experienced tree is awareness.
–Very good! The awareness takes the form of the tree. Now let me ask you one more question.
–How far are you from awareness?
–(A long silence) Wow! That was incredible.
–I realized that I am awareness, that the tree is me but I am free of the tree.
I see what you mean, I think it goes like this, using the terms ‘inside’ and ‘outside’, I experience the tree in my awareness, (inside). Awareness takes the form of the tree (outside) I am the awareness (inside and outside) Lightbulb moment? If so, it explains something I was trying to put in words about the landing on Mars last August and the awareness of Mars, a place out there in the sky. Here’s the link: https://dhammafootsteps.wordpress.com/2012/08/08/1138/
great post, and that’s exactly it! the kind of ‘there is here, and here is all there is’ realisation! 🙂 It’s immense!
“Being here is about getting to know everything there is to know about what that means….” I think that that about sums it up. And I completely agree.
Thanks for your observation. It’s a kind of alertness, an ongoing investigation into the present moment.
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