Awakening to the Dream

The Gift of Lucid Living

Welcome The world is unreal Inner Strength Be the way you are Where is Shiva not? I am not this person What is real Talks with Bob Adamson Clarity talks with Nathan Gill An ancient story Certificate of Awakening The Mysterious Stranger Extracts from Tony Parsons Seeds for the Soul The Drama of it All Clarity talks with Nathan Gill The Self-Perfected State Amazing Grace The cage of self-centeredness Original mind You Are That All There Is The existence of consciousness A myriad bubbles Beyond the grasp Selling water by the river Awake In The Heartland What is wrong with Right Now? This First Instant Peace of Being Talks with Ramana Maharshi All That Jazz About Silence It is all The background Seeing it Simply The Dream of Space and Time Discovering Already Awake Reincarnation? IN MEMORIAM Basic Questions Integration Simplicity One Essence Thought The Central Teaching Unity Knowledge and Ignorance Inexpressible Door of Nonduality The real "I" Presence/Awareness Awakening to the Natural State Looking for God Life As It Is There is only Source appearing Yearning for otherness Dharmakaya The ever-present nature Getting rid of the ego To Hell with it All! You Are the Self The Search is the Trap The Obvious Are you awakened? The Supreme Self Naturally Timeless Awareness The Absolute Seekers of Enlightenment Presence of Awareness I am... This Amazing Realization I am Life itself Awareness is the Source The Golden Eternity Simple Beingness The Boundless Void Self-enquiry Who pays the bill? Changeless Reality The Precious Treasury Transparent Radiance You Are the Buddha Beyond Good and Evil The real does not die Memory Seeking I Am The Nature of Thinking The Great Way Beyond na?ve affirmation Ping-ting T'ung-tzu Free will versus determinism The End Of Seeking? A Sharing of Timeless Being Present and Obvious Blinded by the Light Hooked on Enlightenment It's marvelous All the world's diversity There is no oblivion Direct insight Remembering and forgetting Letting go Beingness That which appears Manifestation of the Absolute Nothing Being Everything Consciousness This Radiance Benedictory Verse to the Self
*  ATTD News Letter number 24   *     Sunday, February 08, 2004  *

Table of contents.

Q & A.
Question: Some modern spiritual masters, at least the ones I'm familiar with, somehow, make enlightenment sound like something simple and natural, something that just happens one day when there is enough maturity. With the exception of Douglas Harding, who speaks of "The Barrier", as a very painful and heart wrenching experience that, according to him, almost invariably precedes true awakening (Thaddeus Golas also says something of the same sort, although not so clearly, and Ramesh Balsekar tells of a state bordering on psychosis, of "almost going mad" before "the understanding happened") few other writers speak of the subject.
Yet, in the Christian tradition, the Dark Night of the Soul, or the Cloud of Unknowing, is a recurrent theme in the writings of the great mystics.
What do you think about this? What is the Dark Night of the Soul, in your view, or experience?
Answer: Thank you for a thoughtful question and below you'll find what came up.
Enlightenment is basically simple. The problem with saying this, is that the mind may responds with; " If it is so simple, why don't I get it?" The answer to that is that there is no one to get it. All questions and all answers are mind, and the truth of what you are is prior to the mind. Its like seeing your face for the first time in a mirror. You did not suddenly get it and nothing changed; it was there all along. Your 'Original Face' is also already and always present. It cannot be seen as it is the very seeing, it cannot be known as it is the very knowing.
While seeking there might appear to be a process to uncover this 'original face'. This apparent process may include a 'dark night of the soul', but there are no fixed rules as to how awakening is supposed to come about. When the 'gateless gate' is passed and clarity is present, it is seen that nothing can be isolated as the cause for the realization of the Uncaused.
For many people enlightenment is synonymous with either a mystical experience or a state to achieve through personal effort or acceptance. In the chapter 'Blinded by the Light' I recall such a mystical experience. It was indeed preceded by a deep depression and at the time I equated the ensuing mystical experience with enlightenment.
Currently I do not ascribe to this point of view and would say that - if there is something we want to label as enlightenment- it has to be the recognition that there is no one to be enlightened; that awakening is about freedom from the person rather then freedom for the person and that it is not an experience, but the experiencing itself.
'Freedom from the person' is often translated into the idea that we should rid ourselves of our ego. When this concept is seen for what it is, it turns out to be nothing but the ego illusion itself. The futile effort to rid oneself of one's ego can cause exhaustion and frustration and may feel like a 'dark night of the soul.'
However, such a painful experience is not mandatory as awakening can also happen without such a struggle; there may be a gentle letting go, or the penny may suddenly drop. Regardless of how it will happen, it is the end of seeking as well as the end of the seeker. No future goal, no one to be present, just presence.

If or when you have a question you'd like to see answered in this newsletter send it to:

A myriad bubbles
A myriad bubbles were floating on the surface of a stream.
"What are you?" I cried to them as they drifted by. "I am a bubble of course" nearly a myriad of bubbles answered, and there was surprise and indignation in their voices as they passed.
But, here and there, a lonely bubble answered, "We are this stream," and there was neither surprise nor indignation in their voices, but just a quiet certitude.
The Void is not of the nature of a black abyss or a bottomless pit. Rather is its nature 'vast and expansive like space itself'. It is apprehended as 'serene, marvellous, all-pure, brilliant and all-inclusive'. Above all does it partake of the nature of light. And it is not anything. For Void is Mind Itself, and Mind Itself is Void.


You are all this.
You are the sky and the ground.
You alone the day, the night air.
You are the meal that's being brought,
the sandal knot, flowers and their watering.
You are all this.
What could I possibly bring You!

From: Lalla. Naked Song. Translated by Coleman Barks.
Maypop books ISBN 0-9618916-4-5
"Orchids and Hummingbirds" by Gayle B. Tate.
Visit her at:

Quote of the moment!
There is no need for you to become the Unborn.
The true Unborn has nothing to do with fundamental principles,
and it's beyond becoming or attaining. It's simply
being as you are.

From: The UnbornThe life and teaching of zen master Bankei
ISBN 0-86547-595-4

Smile of the moment!

Where did we go wrong?

Museum of Art at Brigham Young University at:

An old Indian Chief was listening to a few U.S. government officials sent to interview him.
"Chief Two Eagles," asked one official, "you have observed the white man for 90 years. You've seen his wars and his material wealth. You've seen his progress, and the damage he's done." The Chief nodded in agreement. The official continued, "Considering all these events, where did the white man go wrong?"
The Chief stared at the government officials for over a minute and then calmly replied, "When white man found the land, Indians were running it. No taxes, no debt, plenty buffalo, plenty beaver, medicine man free, Indian spend all day hunting and fishing, and all night having sex."
Then the Chief leaned back and smiled, "White man dumb enough to think he could improve system like that!"

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