Do you see the tragedy of man: infinite being and yet tightly holding on to the limited?

Volume 13 nr. 7

Seeing without a center


Do you realize that non-duality is the reality?


Realization only is, when non-duality is your reality.


The construction of ‘I’ and world

In the previous post there was a passage about returning to the sensory world after the anesthesia from the empty, yet apparently inexhaustibly creative origin: “Then there is the sense that it [the origin] can be known and the ‘I am aware’ and ‘I am’, the principle of being and consciousness without form, already exist very vaguely within it. That is the beginning from which the formation of the individual body, the world, and yourself in the world proceeds.”

After the anesthetic the step by step formation was clear in the clarity of consciousness. It takes place from vague pains and other not yet identified physical impressions, from grotesque flying bodily debris: back, hands, face … Gradually, through the agglomeration of the debris, a more organized body arises. In a similar way and simultaneously, the world that belongs to that body arises from the fragments of the sheets, tubes, pipes, walls, etc… of the Intensive Care unit. It’s an incredibly extensive construction, a whole creation. The ‘I’-person has nothing to do with the vast majority of that construction, because it is a later product of creation. Only in an advanced agglomeration of body and world does the past of the you of the operation, of before the operation, of fragments of your collected biography, arise. Therefore it’s also nonsense to say that your ‘mind’ creates the world. That’s too great an honor for yourself as a mental being. The creation is a miracle. It arises just like that, without giving an explanation, from nothing. It arises just like that from the absolute non-duality, via the universal non-duality (the oceanic sphere), the world of I-consciousness and forms. The important point is that with great lucidity you can still affirm that the non-duality is preserved: the universal non-separation of self and forms/qualities continues to exist despite the formation of body, I-consciousness, feeling, thought, world, present-past-future.  The non-separation of empty origin and creation remain.

That the sensory world then also re-arises was clear with the tasting of food and drink. After a period of intravenous nutrition and tube feeding, just drinking normal apple juice from a package was a revelation. The taste was very strong and delicious, because it was new. It reminded me of the New Year’s Eve long ago, in the 50’s, when I first consciously tasted apple juice, strong and delicious, because then also, the taste was new. That’s how it was, too with the pudding I had in the hospital. It was like the first time I had tasted custard from a bottle: that delicious full vanilla flavor. I asked for it again as dessert on my birthday. So too the taste of coffee in the hospital was like before: too strong and too bitter, but tasty as children’s coffee with lots of milk and sugar. A particular aspect to all these delicacies was that in the moment of enjoyment there was just taste, with the enjoyment of that taste quality like an infinite space (see Advaita Post 9-10 You can taste a strawberry ice cream and you’re gone, the ice cream too is gone: one taste).

It was an incredible experience that the taste experiences and taste world revived so thoroughly after such a holiday. From that perspective, it is clear that there is a strong habituation to tasting, that ever stronger stimuli are needed to maintain the same taste in food and drink, and the food industry takes advantage of that. Further, it’s clear that it’s not necessary to stay stuck in a habitual and artificial flavor world. By fasting now and then, the taste construction and its habituation is brought into light.

This applies to all aspects of your sensory world. You can recognize the simplicity once again through an enforced all or nothing return to a simpler world.

Then you break through the standard situation in which everything is obviously present in a particular way and you become aware of the obvious, including your own attachments. It then offers the opportunity to become free of those attachments. See it in the sensory aspects of your existence and world, see it in all aspects, including the most fundamental.


Text satsang

From a talk with Douwe Tiemersma, Hoorneboeg, March 6, 2009


The universal conflict: expansion and retention

The radical breaking open can go completely by itself. When that doesn’t happen, it makes sense to look very carefully at what is apparently closed, what is stuck, but what can still break open. It will have to come into the light of consciousness, so that it can open. It can come completely free through consciousness. Of course it’s about yourself, your own self-being. When there something in it that is closed, you will need to see that very clearly. When it remains vague, there’s no question what follows. When this vagueness remains, and that’s all too easily the case, then your whole life is based on that closed off area. Then it has an effect on all aspects of your life, without you being aware of the cause. What can you say about those closed off things? They have the character of stuck energies. When all goes well, energies both give and take space. They flow, they dissolve, but they can also be stuck. It’s about energy, but at the same time it’s about the self-being that has identified itself with energy. So it too, contains a piece of consciousness. Traditionally, when a new individual life arises, it is said: “The self has incarnated in a piece of energy and then says: this is me.” When that identification is there, there is one complex: not just of energy, but of ‘I’ and energy, an ‘I’-energy complex. The experience then is that everything that happens to that chunk of energy happens to yourself. What happens to the body then also happens to yourself. So you’re positioned in that piece of inner energy, there is an internal in contrast to an external world. Everything from the external world which comes at that piece of energy/matter, comes at you.

Why can’t this energy clump/ matter flow freely? Apparently there is a force that restrains the energy. If there were to be no restrictive force, the energy would take the space. Usually in a very early stage of life that restriction isn’t very strong, but in order to be able to differentiate internal and external energies, the restriction gradually increases in strength. There are all kinds of forces that limit or capture vital energy. You see how quickly the energies are absorbed by the self-being, so that an ‘I’-complex is formed with all kinds of energetic shells that function restrictively (kosha’s). These restrictive energies in the sphere of the ‘I’-identity are expressed as judgments: “I can’t do this or that”, “I am this body”, “this belongs to this body  but not that”, “there is a border here”, “it shouldn’t go any further”, “I am my brain”, “I think”, and so on. Then there is an internal conflict. On the one hand the energies want to take the space, and on the other hand, they are held back. A dam arises when the restricting force of internal or external energy is especially strong. When that inner damming is very strong the energy seeks a way out in a less attractive way, such as aggression. In an early phase of life the situation is still very open. When this openness is attacked, it can be experienced so intensively that the reaction is total, a total fear, because it is perceived as a total threat. In the further course of life, this doesn’t occur so frequently in daily consciousness because it is repressed. In addition, there are complexes that you acquire later in life. All these things that you keep outside of your daily consciousness still continue to play a role in the shaping of your life.

When we are engaged in yoga as a liberation of the body schema, it’s usually not about very strong emotional things, but rather about established physical structures that are deeply ingrained, such as top and bottom, left and right, the size of your body, and so on. When an expansion comes you see that at first the simpler things come free but increasingly you have to deal with much deeper issues that are much tighter, more restrictive and more emotionally charged. They come free when more space comes.

It’s good to see that inner conflict very clearly. Primarily energy has a tendency to expand. This is expressed on the level of the person as a desire for liberation. Even when there is an identification with a solid chunk of energy, such as the body and traumatic experiences, that desire for expansion, for broadening remains present. It is something authentic because, in principle, the self-being is not limited. Therefore everyone has a longing for that universal expansion. The other side is also there. The self-being is linked to that specific form, that lump of specific energy/matter through identification. That identity has become an anchor through habituation, a certain basis, which you experience as yourself. When that energy starts to fall apart, there is fear that the self is falling apart. On the one hand there is the authentic desire for infinite expansion, on the other hand, there is the desire to hold on to the form and with that, retain your normal-identity. This is a huge conflict.

That identity is continually reinforced from the outside and so it’s always a big dilemma.

Yes, but apparently you absorb that affirmation. It’s an inner conflict. It’s the basic conflict that all people live with, the greatest conflict that there is. Everyone relates to it in their own way, but everyone has it. So it’s good to see how it works. People are positioned in that conflict with a double desire. On the one hand to be infinite, and on the other hand to be identical with a form which man imagines shouldn’t change. Therefore people want to have an eternal life and they’ll do everything they can to stretch it out a few years. That’s a huge misunderstanding, the biggest misunderstanding that there is. The desire for infinity is authentic because the self-being is not stuck in a form. Infinity then becomes identified with a limited form. Different levels get mixed up. Of course you get problems with that. You notice that the limited form is not eternal. Do you see the absurdity of that contradiction? Do you see the tragedy of man? Do you now see the suffering it causes? Do you see that it’s not necessary?


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