Saturday, October 31, 2015

Enlightenment Is Freedom For The Person, And From The Person

Think about the word "somebody."  Broken down we have "some," as something in existence, and "body, a type of form." From this it may be seen that the "I" that develops as a person is a conceptual being. The "I" refers to the body's feelings and thoughts as a result of experience. As this collection of thoughts and feelings is logged into memory and referenced, it coalesces. This becomes the "I" character, the "me." Now we have what we refer to as a person. This is the diagram, the design, and the origin of the person. 

This person then is a conceptual being, conditioned in many ways, and changeable as well. It is not a tangible, or permanent thing. It exists entirely in thought. This is why non-duality refers to the "apparent" person. 

Once it is seen that the person is a concept, changeable and impermanent, one may begin to question if that is really who one is? The body, although more solid, is also impermanent. We are made of these two impermanent aspects, the body and the conceptual "I." When this is really seen, one can begin to question if a person is a real thing. Can it really be who you are? 

If reality is that which does not not change, the person can be seen as something appearing in reality, because it changes. As awareness of the body and awareness of the personality is seen, who is the seer? If you can see the character and the body, can you be those things? Who or what is seeing them? Perhaps the Awareness that sees the person and the body is who, or what, you really are. 

Reality, that which doesn't change, is the container of the person. Reality, as awareness, knows the person and the body. That awareness, the screen upon which the characters play, is the true essence of all that is. That is what you are. If a shift in identity takes place, and one sees oneself, not as a person, but as essence, that which is everything, the person is no longer taken to be the real "I." One then knows, "I am that."  

If I see myself as a body-mind, then I am limited. If I see myself as that which is everything, there is freedom. The person that was, is now free of the limited conceptual character, and free of the limited body. Body and mind are still there, but they are no longer taken to be who one is. 

There are apparently enlightened people. In other words, the knowing, the understanding, is known by a mind that used to think it was a person. That body-mind knows that the person was only an appearance in awareness. 

The enlightened person, an appearance, knows that it is only an appearance, that in reality, it is that, awareness, that silence, that is everything. The former identity of the person is seen and known to be unreal, impermanent. So even though the words are coming from a body-mind we call enlightened, that apparent person knows that it is the Awareness, the Stillness, in which everything appears. 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Can a person be enlightened?

There is much confusion around the question, "Can a person claim to be enlightened?" The confusion starts because enlightenment is the revelation or understanding that one is Awareness, not an individual person. When a person awakens and realizes he is awareness and not the the body mind, the apparent person and the body still remain. The body and the personality did not go anywhere! The only change is understanding. The person was awareness all along and just didn't realize it.

Obviously there are two points of view, the view from Awareness and the view from the body-mind (jiva). The realized person is likely to say they are neither enlightened nor unenlightened, because from the point of view of Awareness, enlightenment doesn't apply. However, the body-mind (jiva) does have the knowledge, and can therefore be said to be enlightened.

It seems to confuse things when it is said that everyone is enlightened, because it is obvious that everyone is not. It might be more precise to say that "everyone is awareness, enlightened or not." As an enlightened person, I can say, "Yes I am enlightened." However, from the same mouth, knowing that I am awareness itself, I can say from that point of view, "I am Neither enlightened nor unenlightened. I am That."