Q: Why can’t I use my mind to get past my mind?
R: The mind deals exclusively with the known. The known means the past.
If something is known, it was known at some point prior to this moment. As such, the mind is a product of the past.
The first thing known was “I am”. Before that was known, nothing was known.
All so-called knowledge is subsequent to it.
Abidance in the first thing known will ultimately take you where you need to go. In that sense, one must get behind the mind to go beyond it.
Q: Is that the same as paying attention to oneself?
R: One is neither the mirror nor the reflection in the mirror. One is the seeing of the reflection in the mirror. Yes, this is Self-attention, not attending to what-is-other, not attending to you, he, she, we, they, them, those or it.
Q: I still don’t see where mind is the problem.
R: Thoughts produce the seeming thinker, as actions produce the seeming actor. Both are mental inventions. The same actions that produce the notion of an actor nourish the notion of an actor. In that sense, one cannot take action to end the actor.
To believe otherwise is to live in an invented reality. It is a reality framed by hearsay, by our beliefs, our societal conditioning and our genetic predispositions. If this invented reality is satisfactory, then nothing need be done.
If it is not, one must undertake the task of clarifying if there is any individual that can take any action to transcend it.
What is revealed is that it is another illusion to imagine that there must be a struggle to find liberation or to experience the Self. To strive for this is paradoxically the greatest obstacle in the way of reaching it because it involves the assumption that man’s natural state is something that must be attained.
Q: Are you saying that my mind makes the world a personal one?
R: It should be most obvious that the world you perceive is a personal one, known only to you. Clearly, the raw data was not provide to you by my senses nor was it processed by my brain. Your world is solely and thoroughly yours.
Admittedly, the illusion is so structured that I feel as if I am in the middle of all the activity, experiencing what comes in through the senses, and deciding what to do in response. In fact, the brain has no need of any distinct “me” aside from itself. The brain is the central processing site where this “me” is, and the brain calls on this structure for everything it does as supervisor, decider or inner experiencer.
Q: Why can’t I use my mind to get past my mind?
Q: I can’t imagine what it would be like to be egoless.
R: The absence of self consciousness or ego manifests as serenity at the level of feeling, clarity in the mental domain and equilibrium somaticly. When one’ sensitivity rises to a certain level, seeking ensues as the innate reaction to the sensed imbalance at any or all of these three levels.
Q: Why are you so opposed to making efforts?
R: It isn’t an opposition so much as it is that I haven’t seen the evidence to support the idea that seeming efforts are productive.
Effort requires time, yet time can never take you to that which is timeless.
Q: If I have correctly understood what you have been saying, then nothing I can do can set me free. Is that right?
R: Yes, nothing can set you free, because you are already free. Just stop imagining that you aren’t.
There is no direct way to It; the only way is in the renunciation of every way.
Q: Why do you say that we don’t know what we really are?
R: What we call our self is this form, or a thought, or an emotion or sensation that we are identified with.
All our thoughts are based indirectly or directly on the thought of I. Each thought consists of a subjective factor, I, me or mine, and an objective factor, a state, condition or object with which we are involved.
We get caught in the objective portion and never look within to see our true subjectivity. We have become ensnared by the external conditioning. What is most vicious about it is that we don’t know that we don’t know.
Q: What about using the intellect?
R: Our intellect gives us tremendous power, but it is only a power that can be exercised on worldly matters. If you want to transcend the sway of the world, you will find the intellect to be the wrong tool. It’s like trying to ascend to a fifteen foot high tree branch using an eight foot ladder. This is why your hear many people saying “I understand intellectually, but ………………. “
For the vast majority of you, this is very bad news because you have come here believing that the intellect can take you there. The intellect can only provide intellectual understanding. After that point, you’re in the hands of the Divine.
Q: How would you define consciousness?
R: Consciousness is the center of perceiving wherein the perceiver and the perceived are resolved. Nothing can be known in its absence. It is the unconditional precondition to everything.
In humans, it is from where mind arises. As your nails grow outward from your fingers, all phenomena move outward from consciousness.
Consciousness’ instrument for comprehension is attention. When the attention is scattered, it is like reading what is written in the newspaper while not seeing the paper itself. When the attention looks directly at itself, then this very attention awakens you, because in attention everything is revealed.
Q: I have been following the path of renunciation for more than ten years. Although I have given up quite a bit, I don’t feel any closer to where I ant to be. Could you comment?
R: Renunciates admittedly can give up quite a bit, yet they never get to the point where they will give up the drive to be some thing, it doesn’t matter what. All practice is a response to conflict, a tension, a dissatisfaction with what-is. It is like chasing the horizon. After a decade of chasing, you don’t feel any closer.
The transformation that you ulitmately want is not in your hands. Anything you do merely validates and adds momentum to the dissatisfaction.
When your viewpoint changes, everything changes.
Q: I can’t sit idly by and do nothing. That’s not a viable option for me.
R: This following illustration is often cited as the justification for what are called practices or paths: to remove the ink from a soiled shirt, aggressive scrubbing is needed. The stain cannot be removed by scrubbing once.
Yet, if the stain is imagined, the scrubbing will be never-ending and won’t succeed. To imagine that there is something to attain is the ink stain itself.
Q: How would you describe me?
R: You are contentless. Any content that you associate with yourself is merely a construction of self consciousness or ego. What you are is imperceivable while you remain as Perceiving Itself. How can the imperceivable be described? In that sense, you defy description.
Q: How can I see this too?
R: There neither dying nor being born. From a singular flash of thought, a world with occupants springs to mind.
Everything that is resolves into two thoughts. “Me” is the I-thought made material into a body. World is the other-than-I thought made material.
When there is Knowing of where thoughts arise, then you have arrived at the truth and there’s nothing to be sought.
Q: It sounds to me that there is not really that much different between someone who is realised and myself.
R: The realised man knows what others merely believe.
Just give up all your preconceived notions and thoughts, borrowed from the words of others. Just see for yourself and understand for yourself. Assert and manifest your own divinity.
With ceaseless remembrance of what one is in reality, you cannot fail. Do what you are told diligently and all obstacles will dissolve.
Q: Can you describe your experiences to us?
R: I can, but I won’t. It would just be detrimental to you.
First, you can never understand my experience any more than you can understand the experience of being a cat. To experience requires involvement and you can’t provide
involvement to my experience. Likewise, you can’t have the experience of my eating an orange. You can have the experience of seeing my eating an orange, but that’s all.
Also, I refuse to give you anything to look out for, to use as a benchmark, to define as “it”.
Q: Is enlightenment a reality?
R: Disregard the ideas of being realized or becoming enlightened or not being realized. All that inflates the ego. So long as one thinks of an ego that has to be
transcended or annihilated, one is simply massaging it.
Instead, assume the simple pose of inwardness. Go back the way you came. Rest as That which was prior to the rising of self consciousness.
Then, see if any enlightenment is needed.
You’ll see that there are appearances but there is no reality to them that can disturb you. There is the appearance of sorrow but no one who really suffers. There is death but no one
who really dies.
Q: Is the suspension or repression of thought a viable solution?
R: Thought is a response, either neurological or psychological, of the human survival system. When the psychological structures are dismantled, the remaining thoughts are
neurological responses to external stimuli.
Thought is automatic in the same way as breathing is automatic. Whereas the breathing continues in all three states, thought persists only in waking and dreaming. As such, the
notion of the suspension of thought is as unnatural as the notion of the suspension of breathing.
You cannot look at your thoughts, because you cannot separate yourself as thinker from thought in order to look at it.
I am not speaking of a blanking of the mind. To do so would only increase resistance to what-is. However, when thought is experienced as no longer “yours”, an impartiality arises.
The content of thought loses significance and the drive to look at thought dissolves. The attention shifts.
When you are engrossed in a movie, what are you thinking about?
Q: I’m thinking about the movie.
R: Are you? How do you know if you are engrossed in the movie?
Q: Oh, I see. OK, I’m not thinking about anything.
R: Are you? How do you know if you are engrossed in the movie?
Q: Then I don’t know what I’m thinking about.
R: Couldn’t you also say that I don’t know if there is thought?
Q: I guess I could.
R: That is the evidence of disinterest in thought.
Q: Many teachers talk about desire as being a core problem. How do you see it?
R: No object is inherently desirable. If it were so, everyone would desire that object.
What causes desire is not inherent in the object itself. Desire depends on an emotional superimposition onto the object.
I see it as a secondary, maybe even tertiary problem. As such, I don’t assign it a lot of emphasis. I’m much more interested in whom desires arise?
It is the incompleteness of the inauthentic-I that prompts continuous desires. There is no difference between the seeming self, its desires and fire and heat.
Q: At death, what dies?
R: The body dies. The Conscious Life Energy that you are withdraws its support of the body and remains unaffectedin the same way as white jade will not change color when tossed into mud.
Q: Where does it go?
R: Being everywhere, where can it go?
Q: Is the Conscious Life Energy the same as noumenon?
R: No, whereas noumenon is pure potentiality, the Conscious Life Energy is the actuality, its manifestation. It is responsible for Knowing and Acting. When the body cognizes, it is that which cognizes; when the body moves, it is that which moves it. It is the formless support of every form, a singular drop of noumenal essence.
Those with religious inclinations might call it Thee.
Q: This idea of “consciousness is all” sounds like non-duality. Is that what you’re talking about?
R: No, in fact, it’s just the opposite. Consciousness is the very basis of duality. There is consciousness and then there is what there is consciousness “of”. that’s duality.
What I’m talking about is going back the way you came, returning to the source.
There is no world without a body that perceives it. There is no body without a mind that conceives it. There is no mind without the consciousness that projects it and there is no consciousness without the Absolute that manifests it. That’s the regression, so to speak.
Q: Why can’t you tell us how to get it? I think that’s what we all really came here for.
R: I can’t tell you how to get it. I can’t tell you how I got it. I can tell you what I did and there may be some correlation between what I did and getting it, but I won’t make the claim that what I did caused it. I can’t make it happen any more than I can make myself fall asleep.
How many people have sat under the bodhi tree, expecting to become buddhas, and have gotten nothing more than a sore butt?
Every event that happens is interdependent with everything else; this proves the irrelevance of causality.
Q: I’m new to all this but I agree with what that woman just said. How do we reach this state?
R: It is not to be reached. If you are on the road 200 miles outside of Bangkok, you can ask for directions on how to reach Bangkok. But once you are inside Bangkok, how can you ask for directions to it?
There is nothing to attain that is not already present. When the attention moves from outward to inward, and I’m not talking aout some psychologically inward but the essentially inward, one realizes that the sought is already there.
Q: It seems to me to be a lot easier than you portray it. Why can’t I use the power of my mind to bring about the realization?
R: The mind’s domain is the known. It jumps from the known to the known. Can’t you see that it can’t take you to the unknown, let alone to the unknowable?
Q: Why is peace so elusive?
R: There is an extraordinary peace that is there already. What makes it difficult for you to live at peace is the idea of what you refer to as “myself”. This idea creates an inherent friction between “myself” and “other-than-myself”. There can be no true peace within that structure.
When the movement in the direction of becoming something other than what you are isn’t there any more, when you have taken your stand in impartiality, then you are friction free, at peace.
Q: Is that the same as oneness?
R: If you are desirous of a oneness which is more intimate than simple identification, then you have to begin the inquiry into the processes called “yourself”. If you pursue this, you must relinquish the desire to remain comfortable because one who is seeking comfort does not want truth. He only wants security.
There is no other so-called practice. All practice is paradox. The shadow-I can never transform itself into I Itself and the I Itself has no need for transformation.
So, what is to be done, and by what? Who can create dehydrated ice?
Q: What is the outcome?
R: Once the psychological thought structure disappears, what takes over is the intuitive and the instinctual. There is the stepping out of the structure of thought and the returning to that condition which prevailed before the self consciousness appeared. Everything is righted; the mind which had been the master becomes the servant, supporting whatever action is required. Its role then is not dissimilar to a data base of factual memories which support the functioning of the organism in the world. One move’s like a kite’s shadow, touching anything yet remaining unattached.
Q: Is enlightenment a transformation of consciousness?
R: There can be no transformation of consciousness. Consciousness is; it is unchanging and constant. What occurs is a transformation in brain processes, a movement away from the self-centric viewpoint and back to where there was perception without a perceiver.
Realization is the repositioning of the sentient screen that is consciousness from the background to the foreground. That which had been hidden is then obvious.
Q: If I understand you, this consciousness is a good quality. Is that right?
R: Consciousness is of neither good quality nor bad quality. It is without quality.
Q: How does all this relate to confusion?
R: Taking the appearance to be the reality is confusion. The transformation of confusion occurs when that which is false is no longer taken to be true.
Q: How then do we find reality?
R: We do not have to seek out reality: it comes directly, mysteriously, silently, with stealth. A mind that is capable of receiving this reality is empty of any notions of what this reality will look like. In that sense, it is a black hole for words.
A mind that is not capable of receiving this reality is a mind that must be constantly watched. Such watching results in the mind’s lies being revealed and that takes one back to discerning the true from the false.
Q: I still haven’t understood your explanation of reality. Can you say a little more?
The mirror reflects objects; yet they are not real because they cannot exist in the absence of the mirror. Likewise, the world is a reflection of consciousness in consciousness. In the absence of consciousness, nothing is.
Q: Is consciousness something that I have to remember having?
R: Consciousness is that which knows both remembering and forgetting. In the same way that you don’t have to remember that you are a man, the consciousness needs no remembering.
Q: How long does realization take?
R: How much time it takes is only important to someone with finite time to give. It need not take a long time. What you need comes to you when you stop pursuing the unnecessary.
Q: What should I pursue?
R: You know you are. This is obvious.
However, that in you which knows you are is less obvious. It is like a subterranean spring; it is there, but is simply not perceived. It is a singular drop of noumenal essence, easily overlooked.
Q: That’s what you refer to as Conscious Life Energy?
R: Yes, this Conscious Life Energy is Knowing and Acting. It is the formlessness within every form. Those religiously inclined address it as Thee.