Spiritual Inquiry

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Craig
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Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Craig » Tue Jun 30, 2009 7:21 am

Notice that although your past history and problems seem to be very real, they are not who you are. You are prior to them. You are aware of these problems, this past history, these perceived failures. All of these things are objects in your awareness, most of them taking the form of thoughts. That means that they are objects in your perception, and whatever is an object cannot be the subject.

This includes other objects of your perception as well. Besides your thoughts, you take your body to be who you are, to be an integral part of your identity. And yet, you can perceive your body and feel it. It too is an object in your awareness. And while your body seems very intimate to you, you are actually prior to your body, because you are aware of your body, and whatever is an object in perception cannot be the subject of it.

So what is it that is aware of these thoughts? What is it that is aware of your past history? What is it that is aware of your body? A thought may come, but you are aware of its appearance and of its disappearance. You might forget about your body for a time when your attention is focused elsewhere, but who or what is aware that you had forgotten about it when your attention returns to it?I nvestigate this for yourself. You have to look for yourself and see. Only then can there be freedom.

When a thought occurs to you, try to look into to whom it’s occurring to. Who is aware of this thought? You might have a situation where your ego seemingly arises- but who was aware of the rising of the ego? What remains even when the ego, and the thought about it, disappear again? Any phenomena that you feel or see or are otherwise aware of- all of these, you are not, because there has to be a perceiver in order for these objects to be perceived. What is it that perceives? What is it that is aware?

Does it have a gender? A nationality? An age?

Does it have size? Does it have shape? Does it have weight?

Does it have a birthday? Is there a beginning or an end to it? Does it have a location? Does it have an inside or an outside?

What is it that is timelessly aware of all things passing before you?
Who am I?

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Marcel Franke
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Marcel Franke » Tue Jun 30, 2009 8:12 am

Forgive me for adding one :
what is it that makes the split between Awareness and the Rest ?

Sorry, more :
what enables it to do so ?
Is there really a split ?
Where is the border of this split ?
Or, on what level is this split ?

GoodNow,
MF.
---ooOoo---

James
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by James » Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:05 pm

what is it that makes the split between Awareness and the Rest ?
what enables it to do so ?
Is there really a split ?
Where is the border of this split ?
Or, on what level is this split ?
The fundamental truth here is that "I" exist or am "Aware"... It is the only constant... I must be that which is always present, not that which comes go... I am aware of what comes and goes, therefore it is in my Awareness... Everything that comes and goes is appearing in this Awareness that I am... But I am the Awareness never the objects in awareness.

james
"Awareness is already present, already here, already now; before you try to be more.... In that recognition there's no effort, there's just acknowledgment"..."Awareness is not something you can understand, it's something you are."

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Marcel Franke
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Marcel Franke » Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:12 pm

> But I am the Awareness never the objects in awareness.

Then what is it that makes the split between objects and awareness ?
---ooOoo---

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Ananda
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Ananda » Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:20 pm

Marcel Franke wrote:> But I am the Awareness never the objects in awareness.

Then what is it that makes the split between objects and awareness ?
Thinking, because there is no such 'thing' as awareness.

James
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by James » Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:21 pm

Then what is it that makes the split between objects and awareness ?
Perhaps we could substitute the word "distinction" for "split".

I think the closest answer is "Isness", but probably not a very satisfying answer.

It just IS... There is Awareness, then there are objects appearing in Awareness. See for oneself that it is True.


james
"Awareness is already present, already here, already now; before you try to be more.... In that recognition there's no effort, there's just acknowledgment"..."Awareness is not something you can understand, it's something you are."

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Marcel Franke
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Marcel Franke » Tue Jun 30, 2009 2:32 pm

james:
> There is Awareness, then there are objects appearing in Awareness.

Would there be any way of knowing this without language ?

When these objects appeare, where do they come frome ?

Is there awareness without objects ?
---ooOoo---

James
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by James » Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:40 pm

Would there be any way of knowing this without language ?
Awareness is Aware, language conceptualizes it, realization occurs beyond language, beyond words and thoughts.
When these objects appeare, where do they come frome ?
...?... To whom do they arise?
Is there awareness without objects ?
Awareness or Isness, always Is; that which appears in Awareness is not always is.

Inquiry is a mental tool that can take us only so far, ask the question and be silent. Realization or seeing occurs after we stop trying to understand mentally, and relax into Isness. Reality reveals Itself in the stillness.

"Silence is the language God speaks and everything else is a bad translation."
Thomas Keating



james
"Awareness is already present, already here, already now; before you try to be more.... In that recognition there's no effort, there's just acknowledgment"..."Awareness is not something you can understand, it's something you are."

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kiki
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by kiki » Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:16 pm

Inquiry is a mental tool that can take us only so far, ask the question and be silent. Realization or seeing occurs after we stop trying to understand mentally, and relax into Isness. Reality reveals Itself in the stillness.
Yes!
"Silence is the language God speaks and everything else is a bad translation."
Thomas Keating
Perhaps my all time favorite quote.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
---

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Marcel Franke
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Marcel Franke » Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:27 pm

James:
> There is Awareness, then there are objects appearing in Awareness.

I think that without language one would not be able to make this differentiation,
and that this split is made, just like Ananda said, is made by thinking.
I cannot see a separation of objects and awareness, when I do not think it.
There is Obwareness ? Awareject ? This ? Blahblubr ?
There is no border.
Thus this split only exists within thought.
Thus objects do not appear to anybody,
except when thought.
Thus, just like Ananda said, there is no awareness.
But in thought there can be.
And there are no objects, except for the realm of thought.
But then again, I cannot see a separation of thinking and awareness.
Therefore there cannot be reality nor illusion as an absolute,
they rule each other out, oneness cannot contain a split.
There can be no notion of oneness without multitude.
This is neither oneness nor multitude.
Thus enquiry when used to its full can take us to a point it proves itself pointless.
Which is rather handy.
Silence is the language God speaks and everything else is the other end of the same stick.
---ooOoo---

James
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by James » Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:39 pm

Thus, just like Ananda said, there is no awareness.
But in thought there can be.
I interpreted Ananda's comment differently:
Marcel: Then what is it that makes the split between objects and awareness ?
Ananda: Thinking, because there is no such 'thing' as awareness.
I interpreted the comment to mean Awareness is not a thing. As in it can't be made into an object. And only thinking appears to separate objects from awareness. If that's what was meant then I agree. I'm not suggesting there is a split between that which appears in Awareness, and Awareness. Awareness is all that there is.

Perhaps some of this is getting lost in translation. I heard a teacher say years ago, that she had trouble teaching in Germany because at the time the German language had no good word for "consciousness" (as in awareness); no word that that was equivalent in meaning to the English word consciousness, that would convey the message accurately. She said they had a word for "mind" and "brain" but not consciousness. That was in the early 1990's, maybe the language has been modified since then, I'm not sure, (I only know a few words of German and don't know any Dutch).

Marcel:
And there are no objects, except for the realm of thought.
But then again, I cannot see a separation of thinking and awareness.
Yes thinking/mind is what constitutes objects. But does not thinking appear in Awareness? I am aware of thinking, Thinking is occurring in my Awareness. How would you know if you were thinking unless it was in your awareness or appearing in you consciousness?

Marcel:
Thus enquiry when used to its full can take us to a point it proves itself pointless.
Which is rather handy.
Silence is the language God speaks and everything else is the other end of the same stick.
Yes Silence is key to realization; but Inquiry, contemplation and other forms of mental engagement, in a way bring us to the threshold of Silence. Just having a quiet or blank mind is not realization of one's true nature. A blank mind may just be deadened or dull. Inquiry and contemplation engages the mind in a helpful way, so mind assumes its rightful place as a tool or avenue of awareness.

james
"Awareness is already present, already here, already now; before you try to be more.... In that recognition there's no effort, there's just acknowledgment"..."Awareness is not something you can understand, it's something you are."

Glycine
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Glycine » Wed Jul 01, 2009 2:22 am

James wrote:The fundamental truth here is that "I" exist or am "Aware"... It is the only constant... I must be that which is always present, not that which comes go...
Dear James,
Are you able to experience this fundamental truth in deep sleep?
I am genuinely interested in this. When I'm awake, awareness seems to be pretty constant - but in deep sleep it's gone!

arel
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by arel » Wed Jul 01, 2009 4:44 am

Glycine wrote:
James wrote:The fundamental truth here is that "I" exist or am "Aware"... It is the only constant... I must be that which is always present, not that which comes go...
Dear James,
Are you able to experience this fundamental truth in deep sleep?
I am genuinely interested in this. When I'm awake, awareness seems to be pretty constant - but in deep sleep it's gone!
Glycine -

I think it's a very engaging question that you ask. It's plausible to imagine that in deep sleep our memory function is shut down. So we don't experience anything. Can't even recall that we might've been aware. How do I know that my hand just moved? Because I have a memory of where it was just a moment ago. The memory function creates time I believe.

The fact that I can be woken up from deep sleep with a loud sound, or somebody shaking me, might mean that there is awareness that is ever present that goes with attention to that stimuli. And we wake up into memory again. I don't know.
What I say is only my viewpoint.

James
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by James » Wed Jul 01, 2009 5:15 pm

Glycine wrote:
Dear James,
Are you able to experience this fundamental truth in deep sleep?
I am genuinely interested in this. When I'm awake, awareness seems to be pretty constant - but in deep sleep it's gone!
That's a good question. Let's investigate together, we can start by throwing out all our beliefs, including the spiritual and scientific. As Arel said, I can awaken quickly if there is a noise in the room, so there is obviously awareness operating during sleep. I also experience dreams from time to time, some of which are vivid and detailed. Occasionally I will wake up spontaneously, within a few seconds of the alarm going off, Awareness nudges me to wake up. There are also billions of things happening within the body during sleep, all of which require intelligence, an aspect of Awareness. So there is Awareness during sleep, although it has different qualities than while awake, but it is still Awareness or Existence.

Scientific theories might say all these things are happening within the brain. But has science figured out how a brain, which is a few pounds of matter, can be conscious? They have reduced it to an electrical, cellular level, like a computer, but they don't really understand what makes electricity possible or what orders cellular functions or what arranges all the sequences on a DNA molecule

Science also says gravity keeps planets in orbit and objects from flying off the face of the earth. But what makes gravity possible? Science says that the earth spins on its axis at around 1000 miles an hour, and that it hurls through space around the sun at a speed of 67,000 miles an hour (more than three times faster than any rocket powered space craft). Yet here we are on the face of the earth, from where we are it seems stationary, how is that possible? I don't know. To whom or what do these phenomena appear? Modern science is now questioning the seeming reality of the phenomenal world of time and space. All I can say for sure is that I am aware of phenomena, they appear in Awareness.

I'll leave you again with the Albert Einstein quote, not to be believed because he said it, but for consideration, and then let Stillness speak.

james

"A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from the prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. The true value of a human being is determined by the measure and the sense in which they have obtained liberation from the self. We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if humanity is to survive."
~ Albert Einstein
"Awareness is already present, already here, already now; before you try to be more.... In that recognition there's no effort, there's just acknowledgment"..."Awareness is not something you can understand, it's something you are."

Glycine
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Re: Spiritual Inquiry

Post by Glycine » Wed Jul 01, 2009 6:11 pm

Thank you for your reply, James.
Indeed, awareness in sleep is different than awareness while awake. The difference is the mind, active or silent. I dare say that in deep sleep we have a very quiet mind - so everybody has easy access to the no-mind state.
Also, inanimate objects have awareness as well - but they don't wake up. Accordingly, to me, "I exist" is a temporary appearance within awareness. I will patiently investigate this...

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