Tuesday, March 02, 2010

THE LOVE WHISPERINGS OF ADVAITA. PART 7 – SITE CO-HOST: LOUISE STERLING

The conditioned consciousness that appears to “run the show” you call “yourself” is not what it appears to be. Your sense of individuality is the pure consciousness – the “I AM” without attributes – to which has been added thousands of chemicals and flavorings. Just as water is pure and untainted, you can add a particular cocktail of chemicals and flavorings to produce an unlimited number of so-called “unique” beverages, for example: Coca Cola, Fanta, tea, coffee and so on. Every beverage appears “distinct” and “unique”, but its base is the same – pure water. The sense “I AM”, the pure consciousness before additives is like this.

You know yourself; you are familiar with this sense of being. Maharaj calls this your “working capital”. The Advaitan Teachings begin from this very simple and practical starting point. However, for the seeker who is not yet ripe, even discerning the sense “I AM” can be a very difficult task. The wild mind and emotions pull the seeker into identification with fears and desires at every turn. Nonetheless, through unwavering attention and dedication, it is possible to pull the senses back from this constant identification and rest purely in the sense “I AM”. You may notice the additives and flavorings, but you no longer identify with them. You are able to “set up camp” as the pure consciousness prior to conditioning. [Note: this is a beginner’s step, yet it is one of the temporary locations misidentified as the final destination. This is why the Teacher is essential – to identify the location and provide the pointers to move you to the next step of the “journey”.]

The particular flavorings and additives of the conditioned or corrupted consciousness appear unique, but, contrary to what ego-identified persons believe, in reality, they are not particularly special and different. Essentially, the flavorings are what you were told through language (via learned enculturation) from the moment that language was learned and acquired. (Prior to language, the human being rests in pure, unconditioned consciousness.) So, the flavorings consist of the false concepts you are taught about yourself: that you are born and will die, that the consciousness is individual and bound up with the body and the brain, gender, race, culture, economic and social class, etc (body identification). The flavorings also consist of what you are taught about the apparent “world out there”: science, physics, astronomy, religion, politics, etc (mind identification). Into the mix are also added the flavorings or traits of personality – fixed by the age of six and developed in response to the particular environmental mix e.g. personality styles and modelling of primary caregivers. For example, the “can do”, pushy, austere, career-driven “spiritual worker” with an inflated sense of rightness and entitlement exhibits these range of traits because they were learned in early childhood from meticulous, goal-orientated, self-involved, reformist, Germanic parents. This particular "personality" believes her attention to detail and action-orientated approach are unique and laudable personality traits enabling her to “serve God with authority and accuracy”. Actually, she is just acting out her conditioning like Pavlov’s dog. So it is for each person, pre-Realization. Each trait is programmed early on, and the rest of the relative lifetime is spent robotically reacting from this entrenched personality programming. [On this site, the offer is made to use the Enneagram Personality Analysis as a means to “see” your particular personality flavorings with a detached eye. When the seeker is ready to “see”, this analysis will provide an insight into the programming which has “run” you from the age of six or earlier.] The invitation is not to fix or repair the personality (unless serious dysfunction requires professional assistance), but instead to understand the flavorings so that rather than reacting to the habitual desires and fears of the personality, there can be witnessing and abidance in the state of unconditioned consciousness – the “I AM”.

See how Maharaj describes the so-called differences amongst people. Even your desire to reach for Realization is a function of the flavoring of personality:

I have separated myself from the food-body. Flowers come in different colors, but they are made up of the same five elements. Why should I worry about differences?, from the same five elements arise all the forms with different time limits, no one has control over that time limit. Different forms, as per their thinking have different activities. About you all, you have a liking for truth; it has arisen from your individuality, so you are after it.

Most people will live out this manifestation caught up in programmed reactive functioning, pushed and pulled along the roller coaster of desires and fears. They will identify with the conditioned /corrupted consciousness, and this will be the “felt experience” of the relative life. An infinitesimal number of seekers (less than one in a million) will find these Teachings and follow the directions laid out. Remember though – location as the unconditioned consciousness is a temporary location. It is not Who You Are.

As Maharaj explains:
Understand that the consciousness has arisen spontaneously in you, the Absolute. Once you are conscious of yourself you know you exist and you love this beingness; you do not want this beingness to depart from you, and it is this that makes you strive all day until sleep overcomes you, in order to keep the beingness satisfied. Then the guru tells you the true state of affairs, that this consciousness which you love so much is only an illusion. It is the basic cause of all unhappiness and your true state is before this consciousness arose. Understand this thoroughly, intuitively, beyond all words and concepts, but also know that if this understanding is just something happening in the intellect it will be of no use to you, because it will be at the level of phenomenal consciousness... concepts... and that consciousness is nothing but illusion. Whatever you know is imperfect, fraudulent. Go where you do not know. Recede into the source, into no form, no beingness; there you are perfect. Whatever you witness will not remain with you; it is imperfect. The one who recognizes the imperfect as imperfect is perfect; that one is complete in himself.

Have firm faith in the words of the guru. Nothing, nobody existed prior to you. When your beingness appeared then everything appeared. Understand that first moment when you understood that you are, the point at which everything arose. The source and the end are the same point.

To be continued.

Please enter the silence of contemplation.

(For the explanation of the cycling that explains how the beingness appeared and how the source and the end are the same point, see From the I to the Absolute – A Seven Step Journey to Reality. Click on the “Non-Duality Books” link on the right hand side of this blog.)

Comments / clarifications may be sent to louise.advaita@gmail.com