Excerpt About Strength
So our awareness recognizes that one quality is different from another—this is differentiation—and it can also recognize the innate givens of each quality, independent from comparing one quality to another—this is discrimination. When you experience Strength or Compassion, you don’t need to compare them to each other to know them. You can know the Strength Essence just by experiencing it; you recognize how strong and hot it is on its own. When you experience the Compassion Essence, you directly experience the gentleness of it, the warmth of it. When you feel Strength, your intelligence makes you act in a way that you wouldn’t act when you are feeling Compassion. Even if the functioning of your mind were suspended, making all ordinary knowledge inoperative, you would still tend to move your body in a strong, expansive way, speak loudly, and assert yourself—all characteristics of the Strength Essence. This means that our intelligence has the capacity to inherently discriminate and recognize a particular quality, not just differentiate it. All these functions occur before the mind begins labeling. Experience ordinarily includes various kinds of psychic operations, all simultaneously present and functioning at different levels in experience. There is consciousness, then there is differentiation, then there is discrimination, and then comes labeling. They all go on at the same time but are interrelated in a nearly instantaneous chain of arising.