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The Heart of Satsang

bluedoorWhat is the most important part of satsang or any spiritual gathering? Contrary to what you might expect, the most important thing in satsang is not the spiritual teacher sitting at the front of the room. A true spiritual teacher is an invaluable blessing, but the teacher is not the most important element.

Similarly, the spiritual teachings being shared in satsang are a great gift. But the words being spoken and the wisdom being shared are not the most important thing. And while the word satsang implies a gathering or community of like-minded souls, this community or sangha may be a tremendous support in someone's spiritual journey, but it is still not the most important thing.

The most important thing in satsang is you. Not the usual egoic sense of yourself, but the mysterious awakeness that is reading these words. That is what satsang is all about. The purpose of gathering is not to provide devotion to the spiritual teacher or to acquire spiritual knowledge or to enjoy the company of others. The purpose of gathering in satsang is to bring you home to yourself.

What is this beautiful mystery of awareness here right now? How do you know what you are seeing as you read these words? How do you know what you are feeling right now? The light or brightness of awareness is shining out of you right now. The ultimate mystery of awake consciousness is here experiencing this life you are living. That is what satsang is ultimately about.

Any opportunity to gather in satsang is a tremendous blessing, whether it is a room full of people or a one-to-one conversation with a spiritual mentor or friend. There is a cumulative aggregation of this mysterious awareness whenever two or more are gathered, that can make the Presence and awakeness of consciousness into a palpable thing. The truest gift of this enhancement of awareness is when it shows you that is who you really are. It is not just an experience that comes and goes or that depends on a great spiritual teacher or special group of people. It is the essence or core of you.

Awareness is the heart of satsang, and that is who you are.

THE MEANING OR DEFINITION OF SATSANG:

Satsang is a Sanskrit word that means "gathering together for the truth" or, more simply, "being with the truth." Truth is what is real, what exists. So all there is, is Truth. Whenever something increases your experience of the Truth, it opens your Heart and quiets your mind. Conversely, whenever something,. such as a thought, fear, or judgment, limits or narrows your experience of the Truth, the Heart contracts and the mind gets busier. We are all equally endowed with this capacity to discriminate and experience the Truth. Thus, the true teacher or satguru is within you, and satsang, or being with the Truth, is endless. You have always been here in the embrace of your true nature as aware, loving space. You have always been in satsang.

Truth is too simple for words
before thought gets tangled up in nouns and verbs
there is a wordless sound
a deep breathless sigh
of overwhelming relief
to find the end of fiction
in this ordinary
yet extraordinary moment
when words are recognized
as words
and truth is recognized
as everything else

 (From Gifts with No Giver , a free ebook of nondual satsang poetry by Nirmala.)

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