Excerpt About Nonduality

Experiencing Nonduality and Delusions that Can Persist as Concepts

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.

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