Excerpts About Nonduality
The Point of Existence, p. 445 • discuss »
The Point of Existence, p. 511 • discuss »
Facets of Unity, p. 87 • discuss »
Inner Journey Home, p. 127 • discuss »
The Unfolding Now, p. 75 • discuss »
Like life, the teaching that I communicate, the Diamond Approach, is a living truth that constantly evolves and reveals more about itself and more about reality. For many decades now, this teaching has been investigating the nature of who we are and what reality is. It has developed many practices and revealed countless realms of experience. Inquiry, our central practice, always begins by exploring exactly where we find ourselves in the moment. For most of us, this means that we begin our inner work by dealing with the structures and beliefs that constrain the aliveness of our immediate experience. Over time, this open and open-ended inquiry into our experience carries us through all kinds of realizations and awakenings. We discover the soul, we discover presence in its myriad qualities, we discover the boundless dimensions of true nature and the nonduality of reality, and we learn how to live a personal life that reflects the wisdom of all these discoveries. The journey into the absolute heart of reality and its integration into our daily life is fundamental to waking up and to continuing to wake up in novel and unexpected ways.
Runaway Realization, p. 2 • discuss »
What is revealed as we do this is that reality is far more indeterminate, far more mysterious than anything we can conceive of. No single view—whether dual, nondual, unilocal, or something else entirely—can capture the dynamism of reality. Freedom is the freedom of reality to reveal its dynamism, to express itself as form, as formlessness, as both, or as neither. No single feature and no combination of features can exhaust the potential of reality. It is a mystery without end. Reality is always revealing itself by knowing itself; and knowing reality and living it becomes the fulfillment of our life. The purity of reality expresses itself to us, through us, and as us, all at once. Our life becomes the life of true nature—the purity at the heart of reality—living consciously and expressing itself as us, using us by being us. This is the mysterious and miraculous heart of human freedom.
Runaway Realization, p. 8 • discuss »
But the important thing about any condition of nondual realization is that there is a freedom from the conventional view of being a self that experiences objects and the world as separate from that self. We are free from the conventional view of duality between the experiencer and the experienced, between oneself and other things, between oneself and reality as a whole. In the nondual view, of course, not only is there no conventional self, but even the individual consciousness is one of the forms that manifests like any other. So we experience ourselves as the totality, as the whole universe. We are all the universes. We are the Being that is the nature of the universe that is in constant transformation, and that transformation is the evolution of the universe. In other words, the appearance of true nature is the universe that we see and the experiences that we have. But true nature is far more than only that—it is vast and mysterious, transparently clear, empty and full of presence. Nondual realization is definitely a condition of freedom, a condition of deep realization, and to be in that condition is considered by some teachings to be true enlightenment.
Runaway Realization, p. 104 • discuss »
The individual soul matures and develops through life and experience and understanding. Its maturation reveals the essential person we call the pearl beyond price, the manifestation of the true individual instead of the ego individual. There is an essential person, and the essential person is a person of presence, a manifestation of presence. But the individual is a much bigger mystery than we know. There are realizations and truths about reality that are not apparent in the nondual condition. As we investigate and see the implications of the nondual dimension, we can transition to other forms of realization, which not only reveal the importance of the individual for any realization, but also reveal the intrinsic importance of the individual. It’s not only living presence and total nondual reality that need to be realized. That is not all of realization. The individual has his or her own importance. The view of totality shows that other forms of realization can reveal the individual in a different light, which is not evident in most teachings or most states of nonduality.
Runaway Realization, p. 108 • discuss »
One characteristic of dualistic perception is that it contains traces of nonduality. The separateness of subject and object is never total. What I mean is that you never find a subject by itself. A subject always implies an object. And conversely, you can never only have an object; there is always the experiencer of the object. There cannot be an other without somebody saying, “This is an other.” So, in dual experience, there is no experience of a self or a subject by itself, and there is no experience of an other or an object by itself. Subject and object, although distinct, always arise as a unit; they are always connected to each other somehow. This is a mysterious sort of perception that most of us, when we are experiencing from the conventional view, never even consider.
Runaway Realization, p. 218 • discuss »
In dual experience, we believe that duality is a permanent feature of reality. That is how most people experience life: “There is me and there is you, and we are really separate, and we can go our own way and never see each other again.” But when we experience nonduality, we see that nothing is separate. We are all an inseparable, indivisible, and formless kind of awareness. That is an important stage of spiritual experience. And total nonconceptuality further shows that even nonduality is a recognizable feature, something that can be isolated and known in contrast to the dual. The experience of total nonconceptuality reveals a featureless consciousness that cannot be experienced by contrasting it with anything else. Thus, for featureless consciousness, whether experience is dual or nondual is irrelevant—it could be either, both, or neither.
Runaway Realization, p. 209 • discuss »
We might think that nondual experience is the real thing because it seems to have no conditions, and is free. We can experience the nondual condition as one field that is manifesting everything, as one field that is being aware of everything, as a pure awareness or presence that experiences everything as its own luminosity and presence. The nondual condition, also called the enlightened condition, is free in terms of being free of suffering, but it is not free, as we have already seen, of certain positions or concepts. In other words, we can experience true nature fully without necessarily being free of all delusion and ignorance. We can experience the nondual condition and, at the same time, ignorance or delusions can persist as concepts we do not recognize that are patterning the experience. And the primary concept that patterns the nondual condition and makes us think that the nondual condition is the true condition of reality is the concept of nonduality itself. I’m sure some of you are thinking, “What does that mean? Of course the nondual is nondual, and that is what is wonderful about it.” It’s true, that is what is wonderful about it; however, if you investigate nonduality more completely, you can begin to discern some of its implications. A truly nondual teaching will, at some point, divulge that the nondual is not opposed to the dual, that the nondual is not entirely nondual. In the beginning of experiencing the nondual condition, we experience it as simply the absence of the separateness of the duality between subject and object. Subject and object are no longer dual; they are unified. There is no longer a subject experiencing an object; everything is one thing. But that one thing is experienced as one unified thing precisely because it is contrasted to the dual. It is one because it is contrasted with the two. In other words, the one, because it is one, has implicit in it the concept of two. If you have one, you have two. So the nondual is actually the polar opposite of the dual. Nonduality only exists in contrast to duality. They are complementary concepts, complementary ways of knowing things. And they are both ways that Living Being manifests. Although the nondual is free from the patterning of the past and individual personal history, it still has an implicit assumption—namely, that reality is nondual, which is a reality opposed to subject and object.
Runaway Realization, p. 220 • discuss »