Non-duality is not a teaching, and there’s no so-called teacher that can teach you anything about it. I’m not a teacher, healer, or guru of non-duality. Though you’ll find my name mentioned as a teacher on this blog, that’s not true.
I don’t have any unique insight that can trigger a spiritual awakening within you and relieve you from your sufferings. You can think of me as a spiritual reporter. Even that is not an accurate description because the one communicating with you is a persona or an image.
And don’t get me wrong, an image or ego or sense of personal agency is required for interhuman interaction. Perhaps, that is why it exists.
I’m not trying to be humble. I do admit that I have some understanding of life processes, but that does not make me either superior or inferior to anyone. It does not make me either special or ordinary in any way. As a human being experiencing life, I remain as flawed as anyone else.
Non-duality is not even a philosophy, and it is incredibly challenging to have a conversation centered around it. That’s why I say that I’m not a guru who has the power to awaken you. You cannot awaken until you know who YOU are.
Non-duality is not even a concept. Every teaching or scripture is nothing but a concept. And a concept is not the Truth. But there can be no communication without concepts. Hence, concepts are used to deliver the “no-teaching” of the so-called term “non-duality.”
People who say that they understand non-duality or Advaita are mistaken. We cannot use this concept as a replacement for therapy or for worldly gains or to make “our” lives better. Why? Because the very agency that calls itself “me” is a movement in the time-space fabric.
In this dimension that we call phenomenality, movement is inevitable. We know this movement as our mind. Our perception creates the illusion that we are riding on this movement or that we are the mind.
But think about it? If you were the mind, would you know that it exists? Only an unchanging subject can know a changing object. For example, if, since your birth, the only color you had seen was red, would you know what red means?
The color red by itself does not mean anything. It derives meaning when other colors come into the picture, and the mind differentiates. We can extend the same analogy to sweet taste.
The only way you know sweetness is because you have tasted saltiness. The only way you know pleasure is because you have experienced pain.
Hence, what you truly are, you can never know because there is no “other” to differentiate. You can only “know” what you’re not. And so, you cannot be the mind because you’re the knower of mind or movement.
No teaching, method, or concept can prove this because the one that’s listening is the mind. The ego-mind (mind with the reflected consciousness that identifies itself as the individual) does not like to know that it does not exist.
That is the challenge of this concept. That is why people feel that non-duality is a radical concept. And it is. But you see, the fear of radical teaching and seeking a balanced approach to figure out the reality may itself be a radical thought.
The mind seeks familiarity because it is comfortable and avoids uncertainty because it is uncomfortable.
Therefore, the mind demands that the spiritual understanding should come to it in a way that seems familiar. The mind gives it an identification like kundalini awakening or satori or nirvana.
It is the reason why different people have different ideas about spiritual awakening. It is all a part of the image that gets formed due to identifications.
The Truth Cannot Be “Known” By The Illusion
No theory, ideology, belief, or dogma can tell you the Truth. The Truth comes directly into the heart and is not a result of contemplative thinking.
You cannot “think” your way to the Truth. The Truth is the unchanging subject that YOU are. Therefore, how can you know it is an object of your experience?
When you’re awake, the waking reality is your truth. When you’re asleep, it’s the dreaming reality. And in deep sleep, the absence of sense objects and mind is your truth. But who is the “knower” of waking, dreaming, and deep sleep?
The moment anyone claims to know the Truth, he or she has invented an imaginary image of the source or the ultimate reality. Any model that claims to conceptualize this Truth is not the Truth.
The models and concepts are merely the pointers. So am I. I’m not a teacher but a signboard. You have to arrive at the Truth through your own personal experience and understanding.
All I can do is give you concepts that may quench your intellectual inquisitiveness to some extent, but I’m not the agency that can bring about a spiritual understanding in you.
The sense of personal agency is a concept in the mind, and as we have established above, the mind is an illusion, so how can the illusion know the truth. Truth cannot be known as an experience. Truth is your very “being.” Your essence. Your “isness.”
Truth cannot be inside the space-time continuum because time implies movement. You have known time only as thinking; it has no separate existence of its own. For example, If you ask, when did time come into existence?
It’s a wrong question because you’re using time itself as a reference to investigate its origin, which is impossible. There cannot be a “when” outside time. Similarly, you may ask, what is outside space? Again, wrong question, as there can be no “outside” when referring to space.
Time is an inference arising from the movements that give rise to events. Your existence as an individual is a function of memory which corresponds to time.
For example, when you move from point A to point B. The only reality of your location in the moment or now is point B. It is only from memory that you recall moving from point A to B.
Every point in location leading up to B is a thought that comes from the memory recall as a function of time. So it is thinking that creates the illusion of time. In deep sleep, there is no movement, and hence, no inference of time.
Therefore, your idea of yourself being an individual with name and form as a separate entity and living a limited existence in the objective world is an illusion created by time and cannot be the truth. The truth is timeless.
Awakening is an impersonal spontaneous realization where the illusion of individual existence dissolves. It is not the result of a thinking mind which functions in time.
The main cause of our suffering is a strong identification with the movement. When the pain arises, we say, “I am in pain,” when the pleasure arises, we say, “I am happy.”
This “I-thought” attaches itself to objects of desire (thoughts, feelings, and emotions) that manifest as a movement in time. When we’re strongly bound to objects, we forget that we’re the witness of the movement of objects and not the objects themselves.
The individual who remains bound to ideas, beliefs, concepts, and dogmas suffers because he (or she) chooses sides. When things happen according to his preferences, he feels happy; otherwise, he remains unhappy, which is mostly the case.
No Method! No Teaching! No Prescription
But aren’t you teaching us that we are not the body and mind? Isn’t this a teaching? No, it’s not. All I’m doing is telling you stories in the form of concepts. Whether it is or will become your truth depends on your personal experience.
Non-duality is not a teaching. There’s no goal. There’s nothing to achieve. Life is its own goal. And what about peace of mind in daily living?
This is the part that people mostly misunderstand. As the speaker or writer, I am not the least concerned about “your” (the individual) peace of mind.
We’re not talking about the peace that the individual experiences due to favorable conditions. That peace can be shattered in a matter of minutes as the conditions change. I’m talking about the peace of mind that comes about as an impersonal timeless happening.
In this peace, the individual’s concern with right and wrong dissolves. All outcomes are accepted. This peace is not an outcome of an individual’s effort.
It is simply the pure awareness that shines alone when the mind realizing the futility of its efforts in “doership,” suspends movement. This awareness is not an object in the mind. It is self-luminous. It is pure love. It is true freedom that the individual experiences as peace of mind with complete acceptance of What-Is.
This awareness is non-dual, and it has nothing to do with the problems of the individual experiencing the world of names and forms as a separate entity. No method or prescription can reveal this truth, nor it can completely alleviate the individual’s suffering.
It is the projector of illusions that forms the sense of separate existence. It is also the one that dissolves it. How? The individual cannot know as it lives within the illusion.
Methods and prescriptions may make the individual feel better temporarily. You may do meditation, yoga, therapy, cross-fit, gym, or whatever you prefer, but it only gives momentary relief. Don’t get me wrong, these are incredibly beneficial, but the sense of individual existence, in and of itself, is like a prison.
Individual existence implies separation from the source (pure awareness), and separation is the never-ending alternating cycle of pain and pleasure.
Every attempt to make the individual or person feel better is like making the prison comfortable. Do it by all means. But prison is prison.