Friday, April 01, 2011
It’s Freedom In – Not Freedom From
I’m just going to post as quickly as I can.
So, here goes. Something I wrote down last weekend:
If you are not in the state of either acceptance, enjoyment, or enthusiasm, look closely and you will find that you are creating suffering…
Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth. I read this and it’s haunted me…
I don’t know how to even say it.
But, a thought crossed my mind and immediately I knew, “That’s it!”
So, I tried to repeat the words that had just floated by and they no longer quite made sense, like when you wake up from a dream and realized it’s actually illogical.
I tried again and failed.
And just like that the insight was gone.
But, let me try once more just to give you an idea:
Instead of evaluating my experience and thinking ‘that’s not enlightened’ all I have to really understand is that that experience (whatever it may be) is enlightened.
In some way it was for me a new take on the concept, “We are all already awake.”
We just don’t know it.
Suddenly, it seemed “Well just accept it!”
Don’t question, just relax, right now, right here “Just Like This” you are awake.
I found I didn’t want to accept that.
Wouldn’t that just be replacing one belief with another?
I’m not interested in deluding myself with the concept, “I am enlightened.”
Surely, something has to happen. Something has to “POP!”
I hear my friend almost shouting in my head, “Look! There is no you!”
But, there is another way around.
And that’s to recognize that awareness (being awake) is indeed already there.
Awareness, always and already there - that is an accessible experience for me.
That’s what I find when I look inside to “see.”
There’s always something indefinable, yet there: “always and already.”
And Awareness is as good a word as any to describe it.
Years ago I heard Adya say this and all my mind could hear was the alliteration: “always and already.” I got all caught up in trying just to say it, as if a mind can be tongue tied and thus unable to get what the words actually mean.
But recently, as Bentinho Massaro used the phrase it suddenly made such sense.
It makes Awareness quite accessible and obvious.
It is always and already there prior to all experiences.
And so, of course… we are already awake.
I drive to work noticing. I walk the halls noticing.
And when I forget to notice because my head is filled with molecular genetic details, when I put the work aside, I notice that awareness had been there even then… like the love that never dies even when we are too busy to notice, feel, or say, “I love you.”
But still, it could be clearer. I am not all that awake.
I like Tolle’s criteria: acceptance, enjoyment, enthusiasm.
Anything less and I’m creating suffering for either myself or others.
I also like the discussion between Scott Kiloby and Bentinho regarding how people often think that enlightenment is being free from difficulties. They experience a moment of freedom from their troubles and think, “This is it.” And then they collapse back into challenges.
They say the collapsing back ceases when you realize it’s not “Freedom From” (all the ups and downs) but rather, “Freedom In.”
So, check out this audio file. Especially from ~38 minutes onward.
Go to the Kilologue Page, scroll down to the interview with Bentinho Massaro.
Awakening simply means to notice that a natural, unconditioned awakeness is always equally present. The repeated recognition of that, is the 'getting used to it' and the personality gradually starts to reflect a greater peace, openness, clarity, love, selflessness.