What advice would you give someone seeking the Self?

I would immediately ask, “where are you looking?”  And then follow that up with, “what is looking?”

Looking anywhere or anywhen else than here and now would be pointless.  The Self is here in this very moment.  The whole idea of seeking means to look somewhere else and find in the future.  When you seek your keys, you look for it everywhere but where you are.  You wouldn’t think to see if they are in your pocket.  When you seek your keys, you expect to find them in the future…but not now.  In this way, seeking is an egoic way of delaying finding…or more accurately, realizing what-is right here and right now. Continue reading What advice would you give someone seeking the Self?

The Self has always been free. The Self is always awake. Right?

This is really a nasty question.  If I say “yes”, then you will think there is nothing to realize and remain stuck in suffering.  If I say “no”, that is not correct and limitations on the Self could be inferred.

You see…it is not as simple as saying “the Self has always been free.”  While true, the question is do you feel free?  Also, are you free from suffering?  If you do not feel free and are not free of suffering, then you are not awake and are not free.  However, it is a figment of your imagination.  An illusion of the mind.  You are hypnotized…and hence asleep…within a prison of your own thoughts.  As long as the illusion is attached to and believed…it is a delusion of being trapped and that delusion has effects. Continue reading The Self has always been free. The Self is always awake. Right?

What does “when I woke up”…exactly mean?

I woke up in November 2005. I simply mean that a happening occurred…a realization. A kind of aha moment when the illusions of the mind are clearly and deeply seen through…in particular this idea of “me”. This is not just a mental realization, but undeniably through the whole being. I sometimes say it hits you to the core or in your bones. Continue reading What does “when I woke up”…exactly mean?

Should I remind myself throughout the day – I am not the body or mind?

This is a kind of affirmation, but I do not recommend any affirmations…even “I am not the body or mind.”  When you do this, what you are trying to do is to train the mind and alter your beliefs.  You are trying to change the habitual thinking of “I am the body and mind” with “I am not the body or mind”.  This will not help realization.  You will not awaken this way.  This is just trying to alter the illusions of the mind.  You can not awaken by training the mind.  You can only awaken by seeing through the illusions of the mind.

When you realize who/what you are (clearly and without a doubt)…you will just know you are not the body or mind.  You won’t have to remind yourself or try to remember. Continue reading Should I remind myself throughout the day – I am not the body or mind?

Can enlightened teachers help ‘others’ to awaken; and if so, how?

Yes.  By just being around them…and/or pointing at the illusions of the mind.

The whole idea of a “guru” is about an enlightened one helping others to awaken.  The whole idea of “satsang” is about sitting with an enlightened one to help awaken.  For both ideas, the top person (i.e. the enlightened one) is called a teacher.  In this way a hierarchy is created – teacher and students…the have and have nots (of enlightenment).  The trick that the enlightened one has to pull off is getting you to realize there is no difference between you and the teacher…and that you too are already the Self.  This involves seeing through the illusion of “me”. Continue reading Can enlightened teachers help ‘others’ to awaken; and if so, how?

I do self-inquiry and what I am is obvious. How will that realization sink in?

You want to know how that realization will sink in and how to keep the knowing when the body/mind is full of fear or suffering.  You say you have awakened (per ‘what I am is obvious’), but I must tell you that you really don’t know who you are.  Maybe on some intellectual level you are trying to believe something, but in your heart and bones you “know” otherwise.

The same kind of thing happened when (for example) a devote Christian told me he was absolutely sure that when he died he would go straight to heaven and enjoy everlasting bliss next to God.  And yet he was terrified about his own death.  Why?  If death truly is going to a “better place”, then what is the problem with death? Continue reading I do self-inquiry and what I am is obvious. How will that realization sink in?

Don’t we have to practice in daily life what we have realized?

With realization / understanding, there is no need to practice…it is just lived automatically.

For example, there is a Tibetan Buddhist saying that goes something like – “if a problem can be solved there is no use worrying about it. If it can’t be solved, worrying will do no good.”

Now you could try to put this saying into practice to overcome your worries…every time worry comes up you could remind yourself about it.  You lose your job and worry arises, and then you can say to yourself the saying and look for things you can do about the situation.  If there is nothing you can do about it, you can try to practice accepting the situation and not worry about it. Continue reading Don’t we have to practice in daily life what we have realized?