the transcendent silence of ‘I’

There is a silence which transcends sound and silence. If I am not speaking, then some might say I’m keeping silent. If I am thinking, then some would say my mind is not silent.

Whether the voice is speaking, or the mind is thinking there is a silence which transcends both speech and thought and which is ever present to both of them.

It is the silence in which sound and silence take place. It is the silence in which speech and thought take place.

This silence is one’s true nature, and it is ever present, no matter what is going on.

This silence doesn’t walk or talk or think or make any noise at all.

It is That in which everything takes place. The recognition of That silence is called ‘self-knowledge.’

How is this silence described in relationship to spoken words and thoughts?

From the Upanisads:

“That [brahman] from which words return, not having reached, together with the mind.” (Taittiriya 2. 9. 1)

This statement might seem quite obscure unless explained.

The mind cannot ‘go’ there, as silence, (one’s true nature) is not an object to be cognized in the way that objects in duality are cognized.

The silence cannot be heard, touched, seen, tasted, or smelled. Thus it is not available for sense perception.

Nor is the silence an object of thought in the mind, like happiness, sadness, or any other thought at all.

We have no word which is adequate to describe this silence as all words initially point to something in duality.

Yet words handled appropriately lead one to recognize one’s very own self as this silence.

Not an object of cognition, yet known as my very svarupa, my very own nature.

Unavailable for hearing, touch, sight, taste, or smell,
yet known by the mind as ‘I,’ ‘I,’ ‘I,’ the silent changeless being
of all changing things, that ever present one, that one am I.

~ Dhanya

Read more of Dhanya’s writing on her blog at the Advaita Academy

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Related posts on this blog:

the cathedral of emptiness

why you don’t really want to awaken

silence is the essence of us all

don’t look for me in my story

come sit with me

silence has found me

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spinning golden light…

I haven’t had the pleasure of turning the pages of Maren Springsteen’s new book yet … but I couldn’t wait to let you know about it!

Spun Gold ~ Poetic Reflections of Pure Luminosity presents a mandala of poems that point to the Infinite Heart of Spirit you already always are!  Pure Awareness as the eternal canvas allowing consciousness’ play, dreaming or awake, remaining One with no separation possible!
~ Maren Springsteen

You can order a copy here:
http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/spun-gold/12552173

Enjoy!

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what gets your attention creates you

My mother’s mother was a wise one. She understood the dynamics of the thinking machine. She was aware that her thoughts were not her or hers, that they arrived uninvited and that not all deserved to be made welcome as guests. Talking about such unfamiliar notions in the early 20th century, a farmer’s wife on a high country New Zealand sheep station a hundred miles from anywhere brought sideways glances and cast her as an outsider. (What’s new, huh?)

She liked to say, “Stand porter at the door of thought.” Perhaps she’d read that somewhere, or even made it up herself, whatever – it was etched in pokerwork on my fresh young hard-drive.

My mother was a chip off the old block, philosophically speaking. Her favorite aphorism was, “What gets your attention gets you.” Come in after school with a bellyfull of moans about how one had been bullied or unfairly punished or cheated on, and that’s what you’d hear. Hmmm. She should’ve been called Kali, my mum.

So, unlike most kids (I suspect) I grew up with a healthy skepticism re thoughts, thinking, and even the ‘thinker’. When I came across the teachings of J Krishnamurti there was huge relief, because all through the years of my early education I had met no one outside my family who was remotely concerned about the way one’s thinking unfolds one’s experience.

But it would take the passing of many moons before the nonduality teachings of the Advaita sages would reveal the baseline error in both Granny’s and Mum’s pithy sayings, and explain why, in spite of their apparent wisdom, they actually made little difference. One was still locked into the effects generated by thinking – both one’s own, and that of others.

The error lies in the unexamined assumption that there is a separate self who can take up the role of that “porter”, or who can be ‘got’ if attention fixates somewhere it shouldn’t.

This morning, while mulling over delicate family business, the aphorisms reshuffled and restated themselves in a fresh cluster of words.

Thoughts are arising here.

The ones that receive attention create me.

 
Granny and Mum would know exactly what I mean. They’d be chuckling away like two crazy crones. Good company for this one eh?
 

the awakened eye

the awakened eye is the eye that perceives without labeling
– we could also call it the innocent eye,
or the eye of beginner’s mind

[This is where I put on another cap – the one that’s splashed with color and whiffy with linseed oil.  Since some of you might well be artists too, I’m posting these links for you.  I hope you’ll visit the website and its blog.]

Many artists and artisans have understood that the practice of drawing, and engaging in creative encounters in the visual arts, can – by making explicit one’s conditioned responses – open the mind to another way of seeing, a way that transcends habitual dualistic assumptions.

Nondual awareness occurs when consciousness is no longer divided into subject and object; when an inexplicable wholeness pervades and one’s actions flow seamlessly from and as that Oneness.  Yet we have no language with which to speak of this seamlessness – even the phrase “encounters with nondual awareness” (the site’s subtitle) invites confusion, for, within the encounter there is no entity separate from that nonduality.  Logically and experientially it is impossible to speak of subject and object, and yet speak one must.

Throughout history there have been – and still are – many wise teachers who speak of this transcendence of duality as one’s original nature – an a-priori ‘beingness’ which we seem compelled to simultaneously seek and reject.  Their teachings are sometimes referred to as advaita, which means “one without a second” – or more simply, nonduality.  Regarded in this wider context the awakened eye is synonymous with the awakened I.

the awakened eye website and its blog have been conceived as places where ideas and teachings on this topic put forward by artists, educators, scientists, philosophers, sages and saints, can be accessed; a rich and varied smorgasbord of offerings.  No claim that the visual arts have exclusive rights to either the ‘eye’ or the ‘I’ that awakens is being put forward – they simply happen to make up my personal creative milieu, the playground in which I first encountered the mysterious merging and began a lifelong attempt to make sense of it.  Writers, poets, athletes and performers are similarly familiar with this experience of merging, often referring to it as flow.  Indeed it seems so common in human experience that it can hardly be seen as unusual.  Why then, is it so elusive for most of us?  Why does it vanish the minute it’s stalked?

Read more at the awakened eye …

Your comments and feedback are very welcome.  Enjoy!