why you don’t really want to awaken

Waking up can be
much more painful
than the agony
of your dream,
but waking up is real.

~ John de Ruiter

John de RuiterJ Krishnamurti and UG Krishnamurti are alike in seeing clearly that the courage needed to turn to ‘look one’s self in the eye,’ to face the void or the faceless is far more than most of us possess.  This is why we invent esoteric worlds of power, magic, the paranormal, and fantasize about what we think ‘awakening’ might be – or endlessly read or listen to the versions put forth by those ‘in the know’ – rather than truly facing its shattering nature. UG’s words are uncompromising:

This state is not in your interest.
You are only interested in continuity,
probably on a different level,
and to function in a different dimension,
but you want to continue somehow.

You wouldn’t touch this with a barge pole.
This is going to liquidate what you call ‘you’,
all of you – higher self, lower self,
soul, Atman, conscious, subconscious – all of that.
You come to a point, and then you say “I need time.”

So Sadhana (inquiry and religious endeavor)
comes into the picture and you say to yourself
“Tomorrow I will understand.”
This structure is born of time and functions in time,
but does not come to an end through time.

If you don’t understand now,
you are not going to understand tomorrow.

What you are looking for does not exist.
You would rather tread an enchanted ground
with beatific visions of a radical transformation
of that non-existent self of yours
into a state of being which is conjured up
by some bewitching phrases.

That takes you away from your natural state
– it is a movement away from yourself.

To be yourself requires extraordinary intelligence.

You are ‘blessed’ with that intelligence;
nobody need give it to you,
nobody can take it away from you.

He who lets that express itself in its own way is a natural man.


It’s almost a decade since she-who-scribbles tumbled into the free-fall that would bring to an end her notions of who she was and the nature of self, mind, and world. Re-reading UG’s words today, especially the line “You are ‘blessed’ with that intelligence;” brought on an outpouring of gratitude. Who’d have thought that the estrangement and agony, the confusion and the sheer vertigo of dropping out of every version of a self would eventually be known as a blessing, a grace beyond words? But words are all she has, so the song goes like this:

the blessing

emelle says

I found the unassailable
rock of refuge

I found the treasure
that can’t be bought or sold

exhausted and ill
I found healing
in that which is ever whole

I found delight
in every uninvited chore

I found my tribe:
the wild wideawake
whose only muse
is this nameless name
and whose only beacon
is this unlit light


23 thoughts on “why you don’t really want to awaken

  1. One of my favourite quotes ever…

    Questioner: Is there any danger in pursuing the path of Yoga at all cost?

    Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj: Is a match-stick dangerous when the house is on fire? The search for reality is the most dangerous of all undertakings for it will destroy the world in which you live. But if your motive is love of truth and life, you need not be afraid.

    All love.

  2. Love the combination of all these pointers, and particularly appreciate she-who-scribbles’s words. May such grace continue to pour its scorching light on us. Thank you Miriam Louisa.

    • I love that – “scorching light” – yes, grace is fierce!
      Joining you in your prayer dear Katherine. There’s no end to this.
      ~ ml

  3. Thank you for narrating your experience so beautifully, Miriam. Some spiritual paths
    elevate us to higher levels of knowledge. Nonduality drops us down the elevator shaft. It is a fall we are not meant to survive.

    • Thank you for this wise comment John.
      “It is a fall we are not meant to survive.” Yes indeed.
      And yet – some(no)thing scribbles as ml, some(no)thing scribbles as John…
      ~ ml

  4. When I was a very young child, I had the effrontery to petition the Divine and request that I be given a difficult life. In retrospect, I can honestly say that the Divine has never failed me. Particularly grueling is my breathless suspense as I witness my own children’s lives unraveling – or is it just that things don’t appear to be going the way that I would want them to? Not my will, but thine be done…..of course.

    Is my suffering of benefit? Nope!

    • Thanks for your interesting comment Willie R. What an extraordinary request for a “very young child” to make – I wonder where the idea of the “Divine” came from?

      There’s an intriguing mix of surrender and expectation in your words. They don’t tend to be good bedfellows in my experience – or yours, by the sound of it!

      Perhaps the only “benefit” in suffering is the eventual realization that there is nothing to be benefited thereby. Nor is there any benefit to be gained from an easy ride. In either event, “natural intelligence” (aka Awareness etc) is unaffected.

      With love ~ ml

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  6. finally home, after a wondrous journey~

    here’s my brother’s comment, which i find utterly gorgeous:

    “…..to be truly nondual the ‘nameless name’ should also be named, and the ‘unlit light’ lit. One day it will be, as it can’t be otherwise.”

    overflowing aloha,


    • How beautiful – your dear brother’s comment touched me deeply and a chorus of poems poured forth! Indeed – “… it can’t be otherwise” – in the future, or in the inescapable now.

      Thank you dear heart. I’m so glad to hear you are home safely in your sacred oasis.

      aroha, aroha ~ ml

  7. along the same vein, i love these words of john welwood:

    “One-sided transcendentalism negates the significance of relative experience altogether. In the name of nonduality, it creates its own form of dualism by setting up a divide between absolute truth and relative human experience.”

    ~John Welwood

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