Throwing the Baby Out .....
....with the Bath water"
It is only in the immediacy and aliveness of the Present moment that your true nature exists. It does not exist in the past and it does not exist in the future.
The belief that you need to 'work towards' your true nature is an erroneous belief - it exists in its entirety - complete and fully functional in every way - in the present moment. 'Working towards' includes apparent targets such as becoming more Aware, Present or Conscious, more Compassionate, more Loving or less reactive. Less this or less that.
Your true nature is Eternal, Universal and is Not-Personal. It can also be described as Consciousness, Presence-Awareness, Aliveness. It is the "I AM THAT" to which Nisargadatta refers. Not separate from the One Life.
Your true nature will never be more complete at some time in the future. It will not be 'more available' at any time in the future. It is only ever 'available' in the immediacy of the present moment - where it is!
Your true nature was never 'lost' at some time in the past, nor do you have to delve into the past to find and recover your true nature with a long 'spiritual grappling hook'. Your true nature exists only ever in the immediacy of the present moment. That is where it is!
It is the Ego that 'believes' it was damaged by the past or lost in the past - but in fact there are only thoughts which say that. It is the Ego that 'believes' it can regain its true nature (which it never had) at some time in the future.
Your true nature is your Aliveness in this instant - it has not been lost. It is still there and does not need to be recovered from some time in the past or found at some time in the future. Only re-cognised that it is already fully present right at this moment. You already are what you seek.
It is the Ego which believes it can work gradually towards the accomplishment, which will occur at some time in the future.
It is often said that "all Spiritual Practices should be dropped" and usually when this claim is made the examples given are ones that aim for accomplishment or fulfillment in the future. Mention is made of "severe practices" and "personal will and determination" to succeed. These practices should be dropped as they clearly involve time.
The assertion that "all Spiritual Practices should be dropped" can and is taken as meaning that anything at all which could possibly ever be done should NOT be done. Nothing whatsoever can be done. No exceptions!!
It is the man standing in the middle of the street with the big STOP sign.
Expressed so broadly this includes all things 'done' by nobody in the immediacy of the present moment, which clearly do not involve time.
Taken this way it is "throwing the baby out with the bath water".
The Zen Master, Dogen, said that "Practice IS the Arising". The practices he was referring to did not involve future time, did not involve the past, did not involve accomplishment. They were all well and truly 'rooted' in the immediacy of the present moment.
Awareness is Aware - it is pure SEEing. This occurs in the immediacy of the present moment. It is the "Flame of Attention" to which Krishnamurti refers.
Seeing is IN the immediacy of the present moment - it does not take time, there are no levels, no gradients. SEEing occurs in an instant and there is no thought - the mind stops.
Some so-called practices (they are not really practices) are just that. Pure SEEing in the immediacy of the present moment. It is just SEEing without it being attributed to a person, or a believed-in entity, or involving past or future.
At the point of SEEing there is just that - no thought - no time. The Eternal Now.
Our true nature is Eternal, Universal and Non-personal - also called Consciousness, Aliveness, Presence-Awareness .
It is always Aliveness / Presence-Awareness that is SEEing, DOing. We are Lived. The One Life Lives Us. Life Lives Us. There is no personal entity there at all.
The only sense of self is the Ego - which is a mental construct, without any stand-alone existence of its own. It claims this, it claims that - it claims it is Awareness itself, claims it is Life itself. But those are thoughts only. Nothing more. It is a fiction written in thought.
The re-cognition of your own nature and the SEEing through of the ego is liberation itself.
Re-cognition is SEEing. Re-cognition is Awareness itself.
It is the Flame.
In the immediacy of the present moment.
Written by Mike Graham, 19 May 2008, last edited 21 May 2008 (thanks Jiddu)