Meditation and contemplation of the ultimate subject

In mental silence, I closely observe my surroundings.
I see no separation, but union, continuity, of all that surrounds me.
Even my own body is also part of the environment, it is one with it.
And my emotions are integrated with my body, so also part of the environment.
And my thoughts come from my brain, part of the body, so also part of the environment.
There is only one reality that embraces everything. Even myself. All.
This perception is called non-dual perception.

In that state you can not feel loneliness. How could you feel it?
Is impossible, because you feel one with everything.

Then I deepen my attention.
I bring it to the bottom of my mind, a calm mind, without thoughts, but awake, watching
.

Then I deepen my attention.
I bring it to the bottom of my mind, that now is a very calm mind, without thoughts, but awake, watching.
And then, I perceive a presence, tenuous, but clearly.
This presence is called the ultimate subject, or the deep self, or the higher self.
It is distinct from the psychological self, for it is only detected in the absence of thoughts.

Only such ultimate subject, the one who observes, feels separated from the observed.
But that subject is nothing in particular.
It is not body, it is not emotions, it is not thoughts. Is nothing.
All this stuff is external to the ultimate subject.
And yet, the subject is someone. It feels as someone, but without any attribute.

Focusing the attention to that subject, with the mind in deep calm, I experience a presence, and a peace. I experience a sort of absolute stability. The ultimate subject is beyond all phenomenal experience, it feels unalterable.

When the mind, in deep contemplation of the ultimate subject, clearly feels the subject, we are in the state called realization of self, or self-realization. It is also called centering, because attention is placed in the center of the field of consciousness, in the subject who experiences the field.

From the center of the field of consciousness the mind is in a state of equanimity, peaceful, and I experiencing peace and bliss.
There are no problems to solve. There is a watch on life, the flow of life, a non-dual life that embraces all. There is acceptance of reality as it is. Such state is named mindfulness state.

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Realization of the subtle, deep subject

There are a strong influence of Buddhist thought in the West, especially about Mindfulness, but there is also some acceptance of non-dualist currents based on Vedanta. Both Buddhism and Vedanta dilute the concept of individual, considering that ultimately there is only a luminous mind without content, a vacuum full of potentiality, or there is only consciousness, respectively. These are the two predominant Oriental tendencies in spiritual, non-religious thought, which is now more heavily weighted in the West. This is probably due to the intellectual rejection that has occurred with respect to traditional religions as an effect, since in this vision, ultimately, there is no personal subject, therefore there can be no God, no soul at all.

Yet, knowing that it is swimming against the current, I must defend here the real existence of a personal subject, more subtle than the psychological personality. And I’m doing it not following beliefs, but for personal experiences, supported by readings of diverse texts, many of them also oriental, in the line of Yoga.

I think evolution tends precisely to engender subjects, or individualities, more and more subtle. Thus, since the original explosion of the “Big Bang” that created the Universe, it went from a kind of “cosmic soup” of undifferentiated radiation, where time and space did not yet have a meaning, to the current complicated aspect, with galaxies , Stars, solar systems and planets, all defined physical entities, individual. After life was created from inanimate matter, undifferentiated, we have another step towards a more defined individuality: each living being is. Later in the history of evolution consciousness appears, when the living being acquires a nervous system sufficiently evolved for it. Consciousness allows the living being to be a subject that observes the exterior, separates it from the environment on a more subtle level, not only has a differentiated physical form, but also has a very simple cognition that separates it more subtly from the environment.

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Evolution of life. From Wikipedia.

But that being does not yet “know” that he is somebody. As the nervous system evolves, the individual mind appears, with an enormous power of separation: the living being catalogs all that observes, sees everything as separate objects: a tree, a cloud, another animal, a prey, and so on. Finally, he comes to perceive himself as separate, with an existence of his own.

In the human species, the evolution of the individual subject continues, generating an increasingly subtle individuality: the individual thinks to himself, becomes a concept, a psychological self, a personality that inhabits a body. By practicing meditation, the subject learns to separate the observer from his thoughts, moving another step in the evolution of more and more subtle individuality: what or who is that “observer” beyond thoughts, and emotions? And when we arrive here is when we find the denial of the individual who defend Buddhism and Vedanta non-duality. The whole course of evolution, of creating a more and more subtle individuality, reaches a point where individuality is simply lost, so they say. But there is another point of view: individuality continues to evolve, it comes to such a subtlety that it may seem that it does not exist, since it has run out of attributes, you can not define it with concepts, because it has transcended them, but still exists. There is still “someone” who experiences, who lives events, but from a nonphysical level, extraordinarily subtle. But not because it is so subtle it is weak: on the contrary, when it is realized, it is extraordinarily stable, it does not affect any external event, it does not depend on anything to be, it is no object, no concept, it is pure subjectivity.

When the person meditates for many years, constantly practicing, but only in the line of development of consciousness itself, expanding it, its development tends to lead to a non-duality, not to identify itself as a being with separate existence, seeing only the whole, the total Being alone. So we become what we develop, and if you work only in this line, you advance only in it and not in others. In the same way, if we meditate on the ultimate nature of the mind, and only in that aspect, we can reach the bottom of the mind, which is pure clarity without objects, and thus we do not develop our subject consciousness.

But we can also work in the line of searching, reflecting and meditating on the subject of all experiences, on the central point of our field of consciousness. Instead of simply expanding our consciousness to the infinite, expanding it, we can also deepen it, bringing it to its center, beyond thoughts and concepts, asking: who is conscious? This is the path of realization of the ultimate subject. And it is not incompatible with others, but complementary: we can, and I think it is the best, to work our conscience in an expansive, broad way, and also to deepen, reaching the bottom, its origin, that punctual focus that is our individuality deeper. In this way our development is complete, and in addition follows the natural course of evolution, which we have already seen tends to create more and more subtle individualities. We will then know that there is only one total Being, but it is also true that we live it through our individuality, which is the natural product of evolution.

Space and time: from intuition up to reality

Time and space

Intuition tells us that the “real things” exist in space and time. Physical science, to Newton, agreed with this intuition, and philosophy, with Kant, but from there people start to analyze the very concept of space and time, increasing the number of dimensions from three to four (theory of relativity) and even more dimensions in other physical theories, questioning the continuity of space and time, and discussing whether finite or infinite.

Roma god Jano

Roman god Janus

The Roman god Janus, with one face looking back and the other forward, symbolizes the classical idea that still currently have the time: a continuous and infinite sequence of events. However, little to look carefully that concept, begins to show inconsistencies. What is the now? How long? One second maybe? In fact “now” is like a line between the past and the future, and has no extension. But there is a paradox, because the past is gone, the future not yet, and this is a dividing line without extension, or a mental construct with no real existence; therefore nothing exists!

Parmenides imagined space as an eternal and omnipresent absolute stillness sphere within which all matter is contained. Since this is similar to the concept of God (eternal, omnipresent) have been opinions that has been linked directly, such as Henry More. Furthermore, it is assumed that the objects and space are independent concepts: objects occupy space as it is one of its properties (volume, but also shape, mass, hardness, position, etc.). If we move the object, the space it occupied is still there, regardless.

Mental space and time: fragmentation of concepts
The usual concept of space is given to us by various sensory experiences:

  • The real, tangible things, “are there”
  • Objects have relative positions to each other, separated by a space
  • The objects have a size and therefore occupy space
  • Also, when we see a vast landscape, or look at the sky, we experience a sense of unlimited space

Much like the sensory experience time, so we can draw a parallel between objects and time intervals:

  • The presence of any one incident, is equivalent to “being there” of objects
  • The time between two events is to be equivalent to the space between two objects
  • The duration of an event is related to the size of an object
  • You remember a past event a while, or think about eternity is related to the vast space.

In fact the mind has a tendency to interpret sensory data in terms of ordered in time and in space objects; latter only serves to support, so to speak, for the mind, what matters is always the object in front of the space.

By measuring space, model becomes complicated …
To measure the dimensions of a body just use a ruler; in more complicated cases use more technology: ultrasound to measure depths, laser light to mediate the exact distance to the moon, etc. All these methods are based on the existence of an ideal unit of length, the meter, for which measurements are made.

But here arriving mathematicians, with their eagerness to accuracy, and argue that the above measures are supposed to always make the shortest possible distance, but can we be sure that we are really doing well? May confuse the distance along our line of sight with the shortest possible. Will they be equivalent? What do the more accurate measurements between two points A and B as all possible paths, and define the distance between A and B is the lesser of all those obtained.

Some possible ways between two points

Some possible ways between two points

Notice that the measurement is compared to an object of known length makes yardstick, graduated measuring rod for example. What will happen if the rule of measurement changed size according to the direction in which it is lying? For example in the upper broken trajectory of the figure, the measuring rod may be extended, resulting in lower than that obtained in as straight paths. Are we this possibility seems implausible? Consider that the only two-dimensional surface in which geometric properties are fixed when we move for him is the plane. On an uneven surface distances vary according to the directions. And if we consider three-dimensional surfaces have the same situation.

Relativistic metric
When the theory of relativity discovered that the length of a body depends on the speed of the observer, and also the time measurements are affected by the motion, it was clear that they had reviewed the concepts of space and time. Specifically, the measuring rod has a variable measuring graduation according to the speed of the observer: it is a variable geometry, which is different for each observer by relative velocity. Since the time depends also on the speed, the clocks must also be adapted. Moreover, as time also depends on the speed, it is incorporated in the metric space, which becomes a space-time.

Although these statements are at odds with our intuition, we must not make the mistake of regarding it as something sophisticated, far from reality. On the contrary, is related to the observed behavior of nature.

Imagine a rigid body moved and turn of all the possible ways. It turns out that the infinite possible moves can be reduced to a finite set of moves and combinations thereof: mathematically this set is called the group of movements. This movement group identifies the properties of space as well as its metric, indeed is an alternative way to study it. Look at the detail: we can define the space as a group of operations on bodies; or whether the space is not independent of bodies containing, unlike is defined by them.

Contraction of time and space: non duality

Another impressive result of the theory of relativity is the contraction of space-time as the speed increases. Imagine you are a ray of light. In this case, as an observer, not would detect no distance between you and the rest of the Universe. Nor would the time for you. That is, you are not separate, by space (distance zero) or by time, from the rest of the Universe. This is not philosophy, it’s science.

Of course, the trick is: we are not a ray of light. For any material object, there is space and time. But we are sure that we are not light? Our body does not. But, what about our minds? Perhaps here we have a connection between science and spirituality: as we know from various sources, training the mind, we can access a state of consciousness in which we are one with the universe, no distance or time, timeless. Exactly the reality described by science.

Manifested reality and unmanifested reality
So are there or not space and time? You can not answer affirmatively or negatively nor depends. Imagine reality as a sheet of paper, on one end the matter stands at the other end there is only emptiness, empty space but there is nothing at all, there is neither space nor time. As we move from the end of nowhere towards the material end, something begins to exist: first immaterial “stuff” as light (more generally, radiation), after almost immaterial things, like certain subatomic particles. As we move towards the material end space-time unfolds, continuously. Some authors names the void end, unmanifested reality, and the other end, manifested reality, but there are not clearly separated, but together makes a continuum. Maybe our consciousness is able, with training, to move along this continuum.

You were not expecting, and yet happened

You were not expecting, and yet happened
Your life was “solved”. No problems. All is right.
You had two houses, two cars, a good job, family, etc. etc.
Your future didn’t have any surprise, only grow old, slowly.

Yet looking carefully, you could see there was insatisfaction.
But you was anesthetized by the daily routine, you were not able to realize the insatisfaction, it was subconscious. Moreover, you didn’t want to see it.
So seemed your life was decided.

And then, you met someone. And your established points of view start to change.
Slowly, your mind become open, and you become able to see your life as really is: incomplete.

You know, the truth is tough: now you know, now you need change all, but is so difficult. How you can change all without damage your family? Impossible.
So the suffering starts his job: you feel like pulled by two ropes in contrary directions, with enormous strength, one want to keep your life, want don’t damage your beloved ones, the other want freedom, want fulfillment of your old dreams, almost forgotten, this dreams now are knocking your door, they claim answers.

The pressure and the suffering increases, the personality starts to crack, and eventually, collapses, unable to give protection against the pressure of your contradictory desires. Someone had to give.

That day, something die within you, and you reborn again as someone different. Your old desires, and frustrations, dissolved. For some time, only a void remain there, an unpleasant sensation. But Nature is wise, and he always put something for fill the void, in this case, Nature replaces desires with peace, only peace, yes, but a impressive peace, deep one, unlimited one. And suffering stops.

Living without desires
You ask: is possible to live without desires? Well, yes, but is incompatible with to have an ego, because both are non separables. So the end of desires implies the death, or the weakening, of the ego.

To live without an ego, or with a weak ego, implies to start to feel the unit of life, the unit of the existence. Also, you become able to feel your real self, beyond your body and mind. This inner self was there when you were a child, a teenager, and adult; years only add stuff to your personality, but the inner self is the same. So you meet yourself. The most important meeting.

The inner travel starts, is not a travel for weak people, because it destroys your world. Really, spirituality is a destructing way, your points of view, your ideas, concepts, even you own image about yourself, are destroyed. You reborn again. You know, there are a lot of spiritual paths, from Sufis up to Zen, from Taoism up to Hinduism … but the aim is always the same: destruct the ego, the lower self, know the inner real self, beyond dualities, aligned with all the creation, free of selfish desires. And this is only the first stage of the travel.

Comments and questions about this inner travel will be well received 🙂

Non-dual reality

Since years ago I have convinced we all have a “higher self”, or, in short,  a Self, dwelling within us, almost unnoticed, except in rare and short times. Our usual way to live is almost always clinging to our intellect, to a point we believe we are our mind.

The intellectual mind , which is a wonderful instrument of symbolization , is always based on past data , interprets this in terms of the past , may not work otherwise . But you ‘re living more. If not, you would realize that you suffer when you suffer . No you would realize all your inner experiential world , with your intellectual mind . But when you think, think only with your intellectual mind,  reducing all the inner complexity, is all you can make with your intellectual mind . And you try to make decissions with the same intellectual mind. We have an inner world of life which far exceeds the intellectual mind. And that’s just on a purely psychological level, without talk about spiritual world. You are more than your intellectual mind, and you can find it right now, at this very moment. Your reality is much richer and with more complex formulations than your intellectual mind. We are mesmerized by the intellectual mind, clenched in it, but there is someone behind that mind..” The Reality – Antonio Blay

 

The literature about this topic also claims the non-duality of the Self, that is, our inner Self is not separated from the Self of others, indeed, they are like waves in the sea, every wave seems to us has a separated existence, but in fact they are only oscillations of the sea, the ultimate reality.

There is only one higher self that dwells in all humans. No one separately for each individual. As Jesus of Nazareth said: I am in my Father, and He in me and I in you.” Finding The Higher Self – Paul Brunton

I always have had difficulties with the concept of non-duality, it was a hard topic for me. How we become one with all without lost our identity? But nowadays this possibility is slowly incoming in my comprehension. Is clear that, from an intellectual point of view, we never can be agree with the non-dual concept of the Universe, because the intellectual mind works exclusively with objects separated by borders. But our consciousness can overcome this limited point of view. When consciousness is linked and closed in the mind, we can’t see anything more. When we meditate, in fact we are training our consciousness for to be free, a state easily achieved when the mind is stilled. And then, we can be one with the Universe.

I am existence, consciousness and bliss (Sat, Cit, Ananda), untethered, self-luminous, free from duality. This state is called Samadhi.Drg Drsya Viveka – Sankaracarya

So nowadays I’m reading and meditating about non-duality (Vedanta tradition, and also Physics, as Quantum Physics), and a new source of peace is opening before me.

Namaste!

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