Loving Kindness: Dissolving the Paradox Between Your Personal Self & Infinite Nonduality

Loving Kindness: Dissolving the Paradox Between Your Personal Self & Infinite Nonduality


Hello and welcome to Consciousness TV. During
today’s session we’ll be meditating together on loving kindness, moving deeper into the
experience of loving ourselves. Exploring how that feels, and how we can go more deeply
into that state of being. Before we do the meditation together I’d like to share with
you an excerpt from the book Transcendence: Journey of the Soul that Rama and I are working
on at the moment. This excerpt is about loving kindness in relation to our healing process
and our spiritual awakening. Only kindness and acceptance extended by ourselves towards
ourselves has the capacity to bring about the transformation of the body of our experience
into a body of love. It is only through this body of love that we begin to enter resonance
with the intelligence that gives rise to all existence. Nonduality can only be accessed
fully as we embrace this moment, this body, this experience as fundamentally composed
of the very One that we are seeking. No matter how it appears to us. As we turn towards this
‘little self’ with that precise awareness of profound value, wonder, gratitude, and
awe that we as human beings usually direct towards the Absolute: that state of recognition
arises naturally. It comes from who we are. The one we are loving when we love ourselves
is the same one we are seeking through enlightenment or liberation. Whatever we negate becomes
a paradox that keeps us out of conscious unity. What we embrace enters coherence. Objectification
and unforgiveness – even towards ourselves – is our default setting when we are anxious
or afraid. Then we become a problem to ourselves in our own mind and the world around us appears
as a problem to be avoided, blamed, punished, or fixed. In response to our spiritual practice
these objectifications, these places of unforgiveness, inevitably arise to the surface to be transformed.We
have the opportunity to offer ourselves the gift of resolution in the very places in our
psyche where defensiveness and objectification have created a paradox. We cannot awaken within
a mind-body field that we do not love and accept fully because the attitude of aversion
no matter how subtle holds us at a harmonic distance from the very state we are seeking.
Supra-consciousness, the Amness of the universe is all-embracing. To enter the proximity of
that reality we must be willing to surrender all our denial and aversion, as well as our
clinging. Put simply, this is the state of ‘Yes to what is’. Not because we like it but
because we recognise its impermanent nature and we allow it to be integrated with the
light of pure being – unqualified – and the light of our own unconditional love.
We cannot awaken fully while negating the value of our own existence as human beings
because that attitude creates a fundamental vibrational paradox. This is why asceticism
doesn’t serve our awakening except to exhaust us enough to finally let the love in. This
is why self-punishment or trying to imagine ourselves into non-existence doesn’t work.
It may get us part of the way through the mire of negative self-absorption. It may get
us out of our own way temporarily. But ultimately we need to release the tendency towards self-harm
and self-negation to allow awakening to arise and to remain in an abiding way. We must turn
from treating ourselves as an object within time to realizing we are the source from which
time arises. Whenever we bring the full attention of our heart to our inner space we turn our
experience from an object to the subject of our consciousness. Consciousness itself amplifies
its presence within us. In this space of expanded possibility love changes the spots on the
leopard. You know there’s a saying “The leopard can’t change its spots.” In the presence of
supra-consciousness, in the presence of soul and presence the leopard easily changes its
spots. Love-awareness rewrites the script of our
lives. It reframes our past-experiences and the fixed sense of identity formed from those
experiences. Then the spacious presence of our deeper consciousness becomes visible.
Our small, conditioned personal self is bathed in unconditional awareness. It is gifted a
far deeper and broader compassionate perspective; one that was not accessible to us at the time
of our original past experiences. Kindness towards ourselves plays a key role in our
awakening. When we commit to staying fully present we become both the witness and the
co-creator within our living experience. Our experience, all experience, arises from an
intention and is energized by a wave of love-consciousness. To stay this present requires trust: trust
in the light of consciousness and in the embodied process that is the expression of that consciousness.
So what does all this mean for us when we sit down to meditate, when we engage in spiritual
practices and when we go about the business of our daily lives? What does this really
mean for us? One way of looking at it is to realize that you are realizing the sacred
when you turn towards yourself. That this personal self, this human personality with
this body, these emotions, these thoughts, these feelings is part of divine reality;
that it isn’t a mistake, it isn’t a Plan B, it isn’t a problem. It is an expression of
a powerful intention and of a wave of love-consciousness. And the more you turn towards yourself with
kindness, no matter what you are experiencing, no matter how you’re feeling about yourself
at a human level when you turn towards yourself with kindness you set in motion a wave of
intention, a wave of love-consciousness directed towards your own being. That is at the very
heart of healing. In a way, when you do that you are divine nature itself. You are ‘I Amness’,
‘Amness’, coming to tend to your own human condition. That’s a remarkable thing. You
know as human beings we’re used to placing our attention in one particular way. We have
a kind of postage stamp awareness most of the time. And it can be hard for us to imagine
how the ‘I Amness’, the ‘Amness’ of the universe relates to all of creation; to you and me
and the billions of stars and galaxies in the universe, to the blade of grass, and the
new-born baby, and the clouds in the sky. How does the ‘Amness’ relate to all of this?
The deeper in you go into the ‘Amness’ the more you realize how it innately cherishes
all the expressions of itself. It has no value judgement towards them; it has no critical
mindset towards them. It has no wish to punish any of the expressions of itself. Those ways
of relating are part of the limitations of our human perception, of our human condition.
And as we go deeper in consciousness, as we approach that experience of direct ‘I Amness’
or ‘Amness’ we realize that we are free to release those judgements; we are free to release
those critical perceptions that we have directed towards ourselves and towards life. And by
engaging with ourselves and with life in a way that is non-judgemental, that is warm,
that is kind, and that is embracing, we resolve our human paradox: the paradox between our
human perception and that ‘Amness’ that we are at the deepest level. The more we hold
onto the judgements, the more we cling to the things of time, the more we objectify
ourselves and life around us, the more we create that vibrational distance from the
very love that we’re seeking, from that unity consciousness that we’re seeking. So we don’t
become nondual by pushing everything away, especially not by pushing away the things
about ourselves that we don’t like or which trouble us. We get closer to nondual ‘Amness’
by being with all those things we don’t like about ourselves; all the things which cause
us suffering, all the things which trigger us. At some level we are frightened that those
things are going to keep us in 3-D. When we push those things away we just delay our awakening,
we delay our healing. We end up in an impasse; we end up in a vibrational paradox because
we are separating ourselves from ourselves. We’re splitting internally. And it’s one of
the challenges in spiritual awakening that so often we want to experience the ‘Amness’,
we want to experience our nondual nature. We want to go beyond this 3-D prison, this
3-D heaviness, this limitation of perception and we think we can do that by applying 3-D
methods. The fact is we can’t apply 3-D methods to becoming nondual. What we can do to build
a bridge to nonduality through the experience of our own love, through the experience of
the love that we create as human beings, and which we experience in its pure form in our
light-body, in the causal dimensions of our inner being.
That dimension of light-body vibrationally bridges our human personality and our fullness-nature as ‘I Amness’ or ‘Amness’. If you imagine it like a sphere, a circle or a sphere
and outside that sphere, outside that rainbow bubble there is nonduality of varying depths.
I won’t go into the detail of that here, but to all human intents and purposes that is
nonduality. It’s formless awareness. And imagine that inside the bubble, inside that sphere,
there are various forms of dual experience, of duality experience. Some less dense, some
more dense. Right in the centre of that sphere I’d like you to imagine a point of light.
That point of light is somewhat hidden by all the duality that’s going on in that sphere,
in that bubble, however it is the very nexus or hub of that sphere, that bubble of duality.
The duality within the bubble, the duality within the sphere, is constantly being suffused
with the consciousness from deep within the centre of the sphere, from within the nexus,
the zero-point, the hub in the centre of that sphere. What is surrounding the sphere that
is nondual, is also rising up from within the sphere through it’s very centre. Now that’s
a simple picture of who you are as a human being. You are both the nonduality, the ‘Amness’
that surrounds the sphere. You are all the dimensions of duality experience within the
sphere: Some more formless, some less formless; some of greater density, some of lesser density.
And within the very centre of your sphere is the same nondual awareness, the same ‘I
Amness’ that surrounds the sphere. You can imagine it as a vast formless light carrying
a rainbow bubble, and then in the centre of that rainbow bubble that same immense, intense
luminosity of ‘I Amness’ is emerging. It is constantly arising, emerging, pulsing, sending
out waves of intention and it is having the experience of duality; of this and that, of
lover and beloved, of space, matter and time, within the context of that sphere. That multi-dimensional
sphere of creation. And you are that, you are all of that. You are the formless and
the form. You are that which has no thoughts, no feelings, no sensations, and that which
seems to be all thoughts, feelings, and sensations: all this and that, within space, matter, and
time. So when you, at the deepest level, look at the subject of kindness, kindness in your
spiritual practice, who is it who is being kind, and to whom are they being kind really?
In your practice you may start with the feeling “I am being kind to myself,” “I this person,
am being kind to the person that I am.” “My loving heart is tending with kindness towards
the parts of my personality that suffer.” That is usually where meditation and spiritual
practice begin and they have to begin there, and they have to continue to include that
perspective. As you go deeper in your practice your sense of who you are will shift. The
one who is loving, the one who is being loved. What is this space of kindness that is being
created and is being enjoyed? Who is the one creating the space of kindness? Who is the
one enjoying and benefiting from this space of kindness?
So these are the kind of philosophical discussions that often take place in nonduality circles,
and they are certainly related to shifts of perception that occur in meditation and that
can occur in daily life as a result of self-inquiry. Answering this question “Who am I?” So allow
yourself the joy of the journey of answering this question. Really the answer incorporates
everything. Every aspect of your being all the way to your deepest human feelings, sensations,
struggles, and sufferings: all of it is part of your true nature as consciousness, just
showing up in a different way, showing up in a different form. And so that allows a
freedom, that awareness allows a freedom. You now have permission to love yourself and
to know why it’s natural to give yourself this permission. So any ideas you had that
loving yourself was a bit odd or a bit selfish or “you should be focused on other people”
or “the suffering of the world.” “You need to put the healing of your own being on the
back burner.” You’re free to release all those kinds of concepts now. The one ‘I Amness’
the ‘Amness’ of the universe does not hold such concepts. It can’t possibly hold those
concepts in its pure state. It loves all-that-is because it is all-that-is, and it loves all
that is equally because it is equally this and that, me and you.
And so as you go within, and you tend to yourself with kindness, you can tend to those places
inside you that really suffer and really struggle, and find life heavy-going, with a renewed
tenderness. With a deeper tenderness and patience. Let time totally slow down. You don’t have
to fix this in a hurry. What you need to do is be with it with love, with intention, with
that wave of intention, of turning towards yourself setting that wave of love in motion
directed towards your own suffering. So that your suffering can be healed, and with it
any imprisonment in duality is also healed. So what we’re going to be doing now is a kindness
meditation. Turning towards yourself with mercy, with compassion, with forgiveness,
and breathing this into the body, really coming into the body, letting the love land where it is most needed. So settle down comfortably now, and we’ll begin the meditation on loving kindness.

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