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Disentangling Awareness from Its Objects

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Go back to a couple of days ago, when I described the neti-neti process The child differentiates itself from its mother And it arrives some stage in childhood with this clearly defined sense of a self: "I am the body." I am definitely not my mother's body I am not the slide of the cradle, I am not the room I am not these sounds that are going on I am this body. So, that is the stage, that nature develops us up to And it is the stage, that most people stay at. So what we do here is we just carry on that process of differentiating ourselves from our objective experience. And instead of arriving at the stage, 'I am the body' as opposed to the world, in the infant's experience it is merged with the world the child's experience: 'I am the body.', and then becomes the adult experience. But in this process we carry on this separating out process until we get back, we separate ourselves from everything, that is objective, and we realise: 'I am awareness.' It is not 'I, the body', that is aware of the world, It is 'I, awareness', that I am aware of the body and the world, or the body, the mind and the world. So, the 'I, awareness', that is aware of the body-mind world is not... it's not the separate self. The separate self is the illusory entity, that seems to come into existence when awareness mixes itself with the body or with the limitations, that belong to the body. So when the limitations, that belong to the body are superimposed on awareness you get this entity, called the 'separate self'. The separate self feels conscious or aware but it also feels limited. The reason it feels conscious or aware, is because it is made of consciousness the reason it feels limited, is because the limitations of the body have been superimposed upon it. So the separate self is a mixture of consciousness the true and only Self of pure consciousness. Plus, the limits of the body. And this creates the illusory entity, around whom most pepole's lifes revolve. So, 'I, awareness', is not the separate self. When we continue separating ourselves out from experience and there is this recognition: 'I am awareness' and then we ponder the nature of awareness or rather awareness abides in itself as itself and is liberated from the limitations of the body we arrive at this recognition: 'I am infinite awareness' I stand, 'I, awareness' stand alone. I am not mixed with anything other than myself. So this is no longer the separate self The separate self is the mixture of awareness plus the body. Awareness has separated itself out from the body now. 'I am pure awareness.' By pure, I mean unmixed with the body or the mind. So that is no longer the separate self. But there is still - now I am coming more specifically to your question- there is still a distinction between awareness and it's objects. So the position: 'I am infinite awareness', is a position of enlightenment, but there are still objects or the appearance of objects, that seem to be separate and distinct from awareness, so we could call it enlightened duality. In which we have recognised ourselves as infinite consciousness or awareness, but there are still the objects - thoughts, sensations and perceptions-, that we are aware of. Yes, and this was, what your question was about this distinction between awareness and its objects, and your questions is 'Is the awareness, that is aware of objects, the separate self?' Well, it is actually a kind of halfway stage so what we do in our yoga-meditations and what we were doing this morning, was collapsing the apparent distinction between awareness and its objects. In fact, we are not collapsing the distinction, because they were never distinct in the first place. The distinction between awareness and its objects was superimposed on our experience. But it was necessary as a first stage to separate out awareness from the homogenous mass of experience. Which is the infant and the animals' experience. Because without this separating process, there is just experience. There is just a mass of experience. That's the way an animal experiences or an infant. So there is this separating out process, in which we first arrive at the recognition: 'I am the body' We then take a step back and we realise: 'I am awareness'. And then we take a further step back: 'I am infinite awareness'. So in this state of the infant, consciousness is merged with experience and through this neti-neti process consciousness un-tangles itself from experience. And at some point, recognises its nature: 'I am infinite awareness.' But we then have to look back at the objects from which we have separated ourselves and this time, instead of consciousness loosing itself in experience, as it does in the case of the infant and the animal this time experience looses itself in consciousness. And the contemplation we did this morning was this we were affecting this dissolution of experience in consciousness. So that we explored thoughts, sensations and perception and we realised, they are only consciousness. So in this case, in the case of the infant and the animal, consciousness is merged or lost in experience. And we say: 'There is only experience'. That's the pre-egoic state. Then the ego is separated out: enlightenment; the recognition of infinite consciousness. Then in the post enlightenment sadhana, experience is merged in consciousness. So we collapse the distinction between consciousness and its objects again, which seems to share some similarities with the pre-egoic state, but it is instead a post-egoic state. And that is the completion of the.... ...of the recognition of our true nature, not just in the absence of objective experience, but in the midst of objective experience. And in both cases, there is only one thing. In the case of the infant, there is only experience. In the case of the one, who has recognised their true nature, there is only consciousness. They appear to be the same It's like two people watching TV one person says 'I see a landscape' another person says 'I see a screen'. They're both seeing exactly the same thing, but their interpretation makes one see a landscape and one see a screen. So that is why... .. the... ... self-realization is sometimes likened to the state of a child. Because there are similarities. But it's a mistake to think that we are going back to the pre-egoic state of childhood. We are not going back to a pre-egoic state. We are going forwards to a post-egoic recognition. And that is why in the zen tradition for instance they say, to begin with the rivers are rivers, the mountains are mountains, halfway stage the rivers are no longer rivers and the mountains are no longer mountains. But then in the last stage, the rivers are rivers again and the mountains are mountains again, in other words, they look like the first stage, they seem to be identical, but in the first case the rivers and mountains are made out of stuff, called matter. In the last case, they are made out of stuff, called consciousness. Questionner: Wow. Ok. Wow... I ... so... basically... in that meditation you took us back. Rupert Spira: The meditation we started this morning well actually it was in two parts. In the first part of this morning's meditation were establishing ourselves as the presence of infinite awareness being aware of being aware awareness never leaving Itslef We were, I was reestablishing what I essentially am is being aware. And this experience of simply being aware is without limits. Then we visualised the experience of being aware as a space we added the space like quality to the experience of being aware so we feel ourselves as this empty space of awareness And we first of all started exploring the thoughts appearing in this empty space And then, the closer we explored our thoughts we actually realized, when you really touch the stuff the thought is made of it's just awareness. All that's there is awareness And the same when we started moving our fingers the experience of the body is a vibration appearing in awareness made of awareness and likewise the sound and the sight So the... Although the first part of this mornings meditation was a reestablishing the presence of awareness that was really a prelude for what was to come. What we were... The main frust of this mornings meditation was to to see, that the thinking, sensing and perceiving are only consciousness itself. In other words, we were collapsing the apparent, we were merging experience in consciousness. Q: I have never experienced that before and it's such an intimate experience. And there is not... ... any kind of a 'me' there... ... it's just experience and it's just beautiful. Rupert Spira: Yes.

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Duration: 12 minutes and 37 seconds
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Posted by: tamasmona on Apr 6, 2016

Disentangling Awareness from Its Objects

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