The Non Dual Nature of Reality


The Non Dual Nature of Reality.
By Untangle Your Mind


Have you noticed that if you think of any two opposites this is always a common dimension underlying both of them.  For example if you think of near and far, that underlying dimension is space.  If you think of hot and cold then there is temperature.  If you think of sadness and happiness they are also on a spectrum.  You may be feeling sad but if you feel less sad and lesser and lesser you end up being happy and vice versa if you are less happy and less happy eventually you end up being sad or depressed.  So the price of joy is the vulnerability of grief, you can’t have one without the other. 


But the mind is built on these beliefs in dualities and opposites which it holds onto very strongly.  Some of them are just immovable like the duality of life and death, existence and inexistence.  Something and nothing.  These opposites seem like they have no common dimension but this is not true.  In the deepest insights communicated by sages, mystics and poets you see this common theme that these dualities are not really true.  That there is something underlying them and in modern days the world been given to these kind of teachings and understandings is called Non duality - not two- not even one. 
So we ended our last video with a quote from the Zen Master Dogen Zenji:  "The stone womb gives birth to a child at night" and there is a context to it which we covered in the previous video on green mountains walking but that context is around consciousness on what it is like to be conscious.  It is like being a mountain remaining perfectly still as everything moves by and you observe it simply because of this quality of You-ness; this quality of being conscious. 


But the question remains where did this consciousness come from? Because it does have a start. At the beginning of every life consciousness emerges and this concept will go against many spiritual teachings and so on that are being spread around these days, but that is becoming enamored with consciousness; the state where there is experience and is ignoring the other side.  Ignoring that nothing, that lack of experience.  The stone woman that gave birth to this child.  And the words of another sage Nisargadatta Maharaj, who has had the most impact on my understanding of non-duality, he calls consciousness the child of a barren woman.   This is quite similar to what Dogen said the child of a barren woman. 

There are two ways to look at it.  One is that the child must be imaginary; unreal.  You can't quite say that about consciousness.  You can't deny that it is here.  So it is unreal in the sense that it is dreamlike.  It is not a permanent state of Reality.  It emerges and everything in it emerges with it as a dream and just as when you wake up from a dream you can say that everything that happened in it was not quite real.  One cannot deny that the dream happened, that it was experienced.  But the other way to look at it, the child of a barren woman is that it proves that the woman is not barren, she gave birth.  And if the stone woman gives birth to a child that is alive and is living then the stone woman cannot be dead. 
So consciousness has emerged from unconsciousness.  Something has emerged from nothing and so they are not polar opposites with no bridge between them.  They are two ends of a spectrum, a common reality that encompasses everything and   all the power and the possibility to take a possibility and realize it.  To have it turn into a life, this reality is what gave birth to this universe.  To all the stars in it and from that stardust, this planet and all the organisms on it and it is the same reality that allows that insentient matter to be taken together, rearranged in a pattern, then have some activity pass through it and have that activity reflected as experience. 

From what is considered as insentient, unconscious and nothing that is where life has emerged from and most minds will just draw a blank to this notion, turn away from it.  Because how do you contemplate what is unknowable and unobservable?  Yet  to turn away from it is the cause of much suffering because this duality of something and nothing, the duality of life and death this is what causes us to strive for whatever we can achieve in this one lifetime to the detriment of everyone else, everything else.  And at an even more fundamental level this duality gives rise to the idea of me and other. The idea that there are these entities , these sentient entities; which exist in their own right, separate to everything else gives rise to the idea of self and soul and a god who will maybe save the souls and grant them an afterlife much life this one but better.    Such beliefs require faith, but Reality requires no faith. 

The proof of it is in the moment you catch consciousness arising .  It just is how it is.  The proof of nothing it is in the moment that you catch consciousness arising and you can do that.  You can do it on the borderline of sleep or through meditation where there is a moment where experience reappears from a state where there is no experience.  No sense of time or space.  Nothing, just nothing and that is where experience begins.  It is what is called insentient, unconscious ., but by being it  there is nothing there that can be called me, a sentient entity.  I am that nothing.  It is brilliant.  Amazing.  It is the very basis of everything.  This is the realization where all opposites converge into a whole realization of the non-dual nature of Reality and to arrive at it you need only focus your attention on the sense of existence, the sense that I am and watch how it is at the very core of all your experiences of this entire life.  And as your attention focuses on this fact of being it will carry on as you go to sleep or you meditate and you will catch the moment where this I am emerges.  That is the most beautiful moment of creation.  The only moment of creation.  The rest is just transformation and expression of this very same ingredient.  This existence that emerges from nothing.


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