Thursday, October 22, 2009

WHO ARE YOU BEYOND THE FORM, SHAPE, COLOUR AND TEXTURE OF RELATIVE LIFE? PART 3 – GUEST WRITER: LOUISE STERLING

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The knowledge of Who You Are is not hidden; it is not secret; it is not only available via purchase at inflated prices or at seminars for the special and chosen. It is not accessible through tricks or gimmicks or flashy teachers peddling their wares. The Advaitan Teachings are freely given; the True Understanding is available to any seeker who chooses to enter the Silence and contemplate the pointers offered. This is the way is has always been. These pointers – when taken into silent contemplation – take root and begin to sprout. The acorn has no conscious knowledge or plan of how to become an oak tree – yet under the right conditions, when the acorn is ready, the knowledge unfolds naturally and spontaneously. The acorn does not “buy” a blueprint or undergo arduous training. The acorn is not special and different from other acorns. In the same way, under the right conditions the knowledge of Who You Are will sprout, and the understanding will reveal itself. This approach is contrary to what is offered up by the personal development movement – which often claims and commoditizes aspects of the Teachings – corrupting the pointers for personal egotistical gain.

Listen to this pointer offered by Niasargadatta Maharaj:

“The world is not illusory, because it is the expression of the unmanifested Absolute, which is your own true reality; what is illusory is your mistaken identity with the limited phenomenon, falsely thinking of yourself as the shadow instead of your real Self. Who is it that is thinking in terms of transformation and self-improvement, changing from one state to another? Surely, it is nothing other than a character in a movie, a dream personality, a pseudo-entity considering itself subject to the law of Karma. How could such a character dreamed in a dream perfect itself into anything other than an 'improved' or 'evolved' dream character? How could a shadow perfect itself and be transformed into its substance? The idea is ludicrous, isn't it?”

The invitation offered in these guest postings is to see your identification with the dream character’s relative life; and to stabilize beyond; to bring the attention to the background on which the dream character’s life story appears; to see that the background is the SAME for all dream characters –– Who You Are is One. To be accurate, Who You Are is One when manifest; Who You Are is Nothing when unmanifest. I Am THAT; I Am.

For this understanding to take root and sprout, nothing needs to be added. However all that is false must be removed. What is it that keeps You bound as a separate individual? Can You see that every concept, belief, thought, personal memory, preference, desire and fear create this illusion of a separate self? Can You see this is why the Advaitan Teachings invite You to strip away these false identifications – to witness them without attachment until they are finally seen to be fiction? The Teachings invite You to step beyond the personal to the impersonal; to see Yourself with clear sight; to know Who You Are.

The pointers offer You the View; however it is for You to tap into this innate wisdom which is beyond words, ideas and conceptual understanding. It is for You to strip away what is extraneous, what is conceptual, what filters and distorts. In Reality, no one can give you the direct understanding of Who You Are. You must uncover this Yourself. You must allow the pointers to have their effect; to lift the clouds of unknowing so Who You Are is revealed. Who are You in silence and stillness? What does it mean to surrender to this Unfathomable Mystery; this Inner Silence beyond words and ideas?

As Maharaj says: “as long as you are still deluded into thinking that you have a free will, then you must give up this active volitional 'I' of the separate entity, and accept the passive role of perceiving and functioning and being a process, rather than an entity...a verb rather than a noun. The least willful effort prevents what otherwise happens naturally and spontaneously. But, deliberately not doing anything also prevents the natural course of events from happening. There must be a total absence of the 'doer' and all volitional actions. This is true surrender.”

At the start of this post, we described how the Advaitan Teaching does not offer a plethora of personal development techniques or gimmicks. Let us end this post with the reminder that the surrender pointed to here is not to a god, a teacher, an individual, a book, a set of concepts, a strategy, or a technique. These are all perceivable objects that are not Who You Are. The surrender Maharaj speaks of is the surrender of all that is false; what is individual, separate and personal; to what is Form-less, Limit-less, Beyond Conceptualization, – surrender that allows this understanding to unfold naturally and spontaneously without any conscious volition or effort.

Please enter the silence of contemplation.

(Are there ebooks, a DVD of a retreat, and various teaching packages offered for sale via this blog? Yes. These explanations and one-on-one teaching packages provide a helpful support for many seekers; and are charged for to compensate for costs of time and labour . The blog postings are offered without charge; many of the Teachings of Nisargadatta Maharaj are freely available on the Web.)

Comments / clarifications may be sent to louise.advaita@gmail.com – a temporary email address available for the duration of these guest postings.

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