Awakening is simply a sudden expansion or increase in awareness. When this expansion is especially large, profound, and transformative, we call that a spiritual awakening. While there is nothing we can do directly to cause a pronounced awakening, all spiritual practices and teachings are designed to make us more available for when Grace touches us and opens our awareness profoundly.
A very direct way to be more available for a sudden expansion or awakening is to become intensely curious about the awareness or awakeness that is always already here. Just as a single drop of water is still liquid, transparent and wet, the awakeness that is present in this and every moment has all of the fundamental qualities of our true nature. Awareness is always spacious, alive, discriminating, loving--and aware. In this mini-series, we will explore these fundamental qualities of awareness and discover how they operate in our lives before, during and after any spiritual awakening we may experience.
By paying attention to the mysterious and miraculous awakeness that is always here, we can start to notice the many openings and expansions of awareness that occur in our daily experience. Then if a large opening happens, we will be available and present for it. As my teacher, Neelam, put it, "You never know when Grace will come for a visit, but it's a good idea to be home when she does!"
What Else Is Here Besides the Doer? - from Nirmala's Blog on Endless-Satsang.com:
Q: While watching and being with the Self, how do I feel "I am not the body" and "I am not the mind " when they are always showing up when my attention is turned inward?
Also, while performing daily tasks and errands, how do I stay as a non doer of actions?
A: I would simply suggest that you soften the intent slightly. Instead of "I am not the body", hold the idea, " I am more than the body." "I am more than the mind." Then there can be a gentle inquiry as to what else is here beside the mind and body, without any expectation or need for the body or mind to disappear or be any different than they are. Yes, there is a body and a mind here, but what else is also present right now? Even if you cannot truly define it or describe it, is there also a sense of Presence or pure awareness that is here just as much as your body is here? Do you really need to deny or get rid of the body or the mind to experience this larger Presence?
Similarly, when performing your daily activities, become curious as to what else is here in addition to the sense that you are the doer of your actions. How many actions also occur without that sense? And how much of a sense of doership is there moment to moment? Do some moments have a greater sense of doership and some moments have less of a sense of doership? Is there something else that is present right now that is doing things?
There are some fascinating studies that show that our body and our muscles start moving before for example, we have the thought, "I am going to get up now". It is intriguing to catch the actual movement of both the body and the mind and to see if there is some other deeper source for our actions and our thoughts. Where do thoughts come from? Where do our physical movements originate? Do they always happen first in the mind, or do they sometimes just appear spontaneously in the muscles?
There are no wrong answers to these questions as there are several levels to truth and for practical purposes, it can still be appropriate at times to hold the perspective that I am the doer. But perhaps there are other levels that are also operating here that we can become aware of. Here is a short article that explores these different levels: http://endless-satsang.com/what.htm
I hope this is helpful.
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