When you let the artificial fall away, the ‘I’ disappears.

Advaita Post Volume 13 No. 8



Advaita Post 13-08

Non-duality exists right on the surface in all kinds of places.


When you relax in your clearer consciousness,

everything opens up.

In finite things

you see infinity.

In the finite other

you discover infinity.

In your finite bodily self

you experience infinity.

You confirm that no duality exists.

So just remain in the non-duality of the infinite.



Text satsang


From a talk with Douwe Tiemersma, Gouda, October 5, 1996

Consciousness without a ‘me’ practicing it

When you have had an open consciousness for what appears for a somewhat longer period of time, consciousness becomes stable, like a candle flame which doesn’t flicker. Then your whole situation becomes clear. Consciousness is the light in which phenomena become visible and you are that consciousness.

As consciousness you can remain free of that which becomes visible. So don’t be obsessively taken by everything you see and experience in the world. When you remain staring fixedly, you’re stuck. Meditation is especially suited for discovering that fixation and releasing it from  yourself as open being-awareness. You can release all forms. Most likely this form-world continues for a while, but then you certainly see it.

As consciousness you can remain free of every activity in your being-awareness. Becoming aware happens by itself, without an ‘I’ that needs to control it. Meditation naturally helps you to be aware of yourself as the sphere in which phenomena become visible. The main point is the insight: “I’m not doing anything”, “I’m not someone who is looking”.

I see hardly any progression in myself.

Have you practiced recently? You walk to the store and you begin to walk slower and slower. At a given moment you walk only a centimeter a second. So we had agreed on that. If you don’t do it, then you can’t speak about it. You talk with someone and at a certain moment your speech slows down. When you always continue at the old pace your attention goes from the one to the other and you maintain the old ‘I’-structure. There is a constant motion from yourself towards a goal. In our society this motion continues and the speed of it always increases. Everything continues to spin. People are running here and there and back again. There is no moment of rest. The possibility of becoming a little more aware of yourself decreases. When will this circus finally end? When will something actually happen? When something really goes wrong, then there is the chance that people will come to themselves. But you can break through your old patterns just like that.

You’ll certainly have to practice it, for example by consciously breaking through the automatic momentum of speed. When your fascination and bondage is broken through, anything is possible. Physically, you can run or do nothing. It no longer makes any difference. But just once break though the speed of your own movement. Do it also just once with your breath. Follow your breath and let it go slower and slower until it stops. What happens now? Take a look. The traditional yogis do this sometimes in a restricted way: “I’ve always been a slave of the actions I had to perform; so in order to be free I’ll stop functioning: eating, drinking and other activities, breathing, heartbeat, and so on” That kind of stopping is an illusion, but it’s certainly useful to let everything decrease to a slower pace in order to break through fixed patterns.

Then is it a matter of self-discipline?

To a certain extent there is a self-discipline: the old self is stripped of its old tendencies, the limitations of which are broken through. This is done from a ‘higher’ self, initially by the localized self of insight, and then later by yourself as open being-awareness. Then there is no ‘I’ any more that does anything and therefore no discipline. When the light of the Self manifests, darkness disappears automatically and everything becomes clear. Then you are so glad to be free of all heaviness. That’s not self-discipline, but being-awareness and joy. So there is no self discipline in the sense of  “ I must do that”, because then you’re back in the same old limited ‘I’ structure. Let the practicing of consciousness go by itself.

When you come to a standstill during the day, don’t you still need to observe the things that otherwise you do automatically?

Yes, but then also let everything relax. When you observe particular things let all the tension go, so that they’re no longer so hard and important. Then your whole sphere of existence can open up. When the observing happens in a tense way, there is the intent “now I must be aware of myself”. Then there is also the tension “I want to achieve something”. But it’s really only about this quality of clarity. You sit down to peel potatoes and just once you take your time with it, eternal time. Then the situation becomes completely different. The whole structure of quickly peeling potatoes and wanting them to be ready falls away. It doesn’t matter how long it takes, time is unimportant. The Self has an eternity of time. As Self you have nothing to do with time. When that is clear, you continue to discover new things, all kinds of things that you previously overlooked. It’s good to see this directly from within and to practice it like this. Then the boundary between events and yourself disappears. That is the meaning of the meditative walk: I am aware of all parts of my body. I bring my weight onto one foot, the other foot rolls up, I lift it, I bring it forward, I put it down, shift the balance, the other foot comes up, and so on. This can happen in the sphere of self-being. Phenomena rise up in your own consciousness. Within it it’s all so lucid that you can see everything very precisely. Whatever happens with walking, happens in the sphere of your Self. There is walking, but you’re not someone who walks, you’re not someone who moves his feet.

Is there then still a long way to go for the full realization? Surface debris of my personality continue to pop up.

When you realize what I said, you are truly in your natural state. Then what still needs to happen? When no particular form can affect yourSelf … When that is finally realized, there is simultaneously the reality of the non-duality and the realization of it. There is a non-dual reality and the consciousness of it. These are all words, but they refer to an actual event that has a consciousness aspect and a being aspect. It is called the natural state because there’s nothing artificial in it, because there’s no longer anything that constructs in a hard way. The natural state is unconditioned. In Buddhism, it is called ‘such-ness’. That’s it, nothing more. There are no problems, there is everything and there is nothing. It’s also called  ‘emptiness’ because the fullness of important things in life, that substantial fullness, is completely absent. You can’t say that there is absolutely nothing. As long as there are senses there is a certain perceiving, but there is nothing that is of absolute importance. Nothing possesses a heavy individuality any longer in the sense that an ‘I’ is stuck there. There is no ‘I’ to which so many properties are attributed, an ‘I’ that should exist eternally. In this sense there is absolutely no ‘I’, because that ‘I’ is just a particular feeling, a whole of bodily impressions, which are taken together. You see that it is empty. It’s all loose impressions, thought processes, perceptual processes, feeling processes, nothing more. They change according to circumstances. When you’re sick they are different than when you’re healthy. When you’re old, they are different than when you’re young. When you let the artificial fall away, the ‘I’ disappears.

How is it with yourself? There is still the inner confirmation that you are infinite being-awareness, and as such, you are one with its inexpressible source.


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