Any spiritual teaching presents a vision to understand Life, the world. That vision is like a map. It brings security to the follower to mitigate his uncertainty; although that vision is limiting.
Why is it limiting?
A map is not the real thing. If I need to explain this further, see Life as driving in a highway. We enter into the highway and the “decision” will have to be made right there. There is no time for questions. No time to review the map. Speed up? Slow down? Use your signal? Change lanes? Slow down to speed up? There are so many variants. Are you looking for the “right one”? Was that ever written some place in a holy book?
The “spiritual teaching” maybe something like: “Be careful while driving in the highway.” Fear is introduced.
Let me ask; is there any meaning to that “be careful”?
Perhaps be AWARE is a far better “teaching,” however; it is another pretty word to say to look “good,” concerned…
AWARENESS cannot be taught. You ARE or you may not be AWARE.
It is through AWARENESS how we could realize things about ourselves and through that “teaching” our BEING will behave (DO) in the world. That knowing is experiential and valuable. It is not second hand.
AWARENESS is some sort of sensibility. It comes when we are conscious of ourselves (feelings, thoughts, emotions) alone and in relationship. The word describing our “teacher” in Life is OBSERVATION.
The capacity to observe will bring sensibility and that in turn will bring awareness, consciousness.
We are conditioned to judge, to follow what is believed to be “right,” which is some script that we have learned from someone. We call that discernment. A pretty word to hide conditioning.
When you know the features in your car, you can use them to ADAPT to the environment, what is happening, the “now.”
Observe the person you are talking with. Can you FEEL his intention, his vibe?
Did he shake your hand? Yes?? He was following the map. You “thought” he was a good fellow, well educated, well-conditioned.
Let me briefly explore mainstream “Tantra” teachings: A certified sex guru is needed. Someone to tell us what to DO.
Step #1: Breathe slowly. Step #2: Move slowly. Step #3: Last as long as you can…
That is the software to “practice.” The teaching to follow to be “successful.”
If we had OBSERVATION, we wouldn’t follow STEPS. We would BE those naturally.
OBSERVE our own rigidity. Our own pre-conceptions. Our need to be in control. Observe the need of our ego to perform to some standard. Observe our inability to feel pleasure and enjoy pleasure with the simplest things in Life: The feeling of water running through our naked body, a caress that spreads to our whole being… Observe how our capacity to enjoy has diminished to the point where relaxation is never felt, sensuality is not part of ourselves. Sexual pleasure is merely an “itch” to get rid of.
That sensibility to feel is gained in solitary aloneness. That is the needed space. Through that gained AWARENESS the “map” is no longer needed. Every moment is to BE in the highway of Life. Forget about the prescriptions, the methods, the technicalities. Our unpracticed, unlearned sensibility will take us places… Just relax, unwind. Let the last second “decisions” come without thinking about it.
“Spiritual teachings” are needed only because we live in the mind, so we cannot BE. Thus, we DO them, practice them, follow them, copy them.
Outside of the mind, there is a world of sensibility, which is unknown to most. How do we call that world?
Sensibility is her daughter. AWARENESS, her twin sister. 🙂 The height of human sexuality is in that “family. ” Spiritual teachings, will tell us to DO what is not meant to be DOne.
“As you said, deconditioning needs to be done to live more sensibly and have a fulfilled life which can be done by spending lots of time in nature. Can you suggest some of the ways to incorporate that in daily life ? Taking a walk daily in nature, is that enough ? Or something more needs to be done ? May be taking a weekend off to some place ? What should we allow in ourselves in our daily life to be deconditioned ? To leave the society for long periods of time sometimes, is not possible.”
Thank you for your question. It is appreciated.
Your question allows me to clarify somethings about deconditioning.
Observe that in “spirituality” we want to “accomplish” things. Some want illumination, God, etc. and the expectation is that there are certain methods or techniques to get there. It is not like that, but that is the conditioning based on our goal oriented society. “I want that too” is the motto.
Life does not have “goals.” Consciousness keeps changing without human interaction, without the “I” DOING things.
Deconditioning is not to be done. It happens. Nature is not a method for deconditioning, but deconditioning happens through Nature as well as through other means.
Probably the last phrase does not make any sense. 🙂 I will try to explain.
I could easily say:” Sure, a walk in the park in the early hours is best for deconditioning. At least 3 times a week on an empty stomach.” But that is not so. This is not an exercise meant to fit our busy schedule, so we can accomplish deconditioning along with other things that we want in Life.
Ahnanda only shares his experiences. Ahnanda is not sharing methods or techniques.
In my experience, Nature is important to create the space for deconditioning. I did not “choose to be in Nature,” I did not go to Nature for the goal of deconditioning.
I love Nature. It is Natural for me to seek it without any purpose other than sheer enjoyment of it.
Then, deconditioning happens as my love for Nature took me away from the pursues and busy-ness of the “Office World.”
Nature is a very important part of my Life but, I incorporate the “Office world,” 5 times a week up to 40 hours per week.
If you join a religious group (the most distant from current ways of society, the better) out of a feeling rather than a thought of mental gain, deconditioning will happen as well, but you will be conditioned in a new way. Most followers are not aware of that.
Thus, in your last question: “What should we allow in ourselves in our daily life to be deconditioned?” Be open to Love. Love will do.
Love to Nature, Love to God, Love to Life, Love to someone else…
Love implies acceptance, openness for another, that will necessarily take you away from your comfort zone. That is the needed space to see things from a different perspective. Everything else after that is awareness. Most think that they love already, but they are conditioned, how come? Discover if your “love” is the one that will make you forget about yourself rather than reinforce it. Reinforcing yourself means to reinforce conditioning, and that is not the kind of love that I am talking about.
Deconditioning is not rejection of our previous conditioning. Deconditioning will give us the ability to see our old being, just like when we remember our days as little kids.
There are many ways to see the world. This vision is not about finding what is “right” and reject what is “wrong,” which is the prevalent conditioning.
Observe that every way to see the world will have its chance to manifest. It will appear and then disappear; thus there is nothing to hang onto, nothing to bring as the “truth” for change itself is not the “truth” but just another way to see the world, another vision.
Deconditioning will not give you “truth,” but openness. It is that openness what will bring fulfillment in Life… and that certainly, could be your unspoken “truth.” 🙂
What is in our minds is mostly conditioning. Learned behaviors, laws, morality, traditions, etc.
It is that conditioning which is the main obstacle for openness, surrendering, no-I.
Ego, the “I,” thrives in conditioning. It feels safe. That is the comfort of the known. Unchallenged, we behave just like robots: According to the software installed in us. A society or a religious group relies on conditioning for the behavior of followers will be predictable.
This predictability is desirable to live in groups, societies. Control is geared to this end: Predictability.
If you are unpredictable, you become a menace to society.
How predictable is the weather? How predictable are acts of god?
Nature is unpredictable that is why it is feared.
Modern man has been conditioned to live in his own bubble of concrete, noise and technology. It is called safety. Nature is out, thus; to decondition someone, Nature should be “in.” That is the first step for humans, are part of Nature.
The whole idea of “spirituality” has been distorted to fit predictability. Become wise like some spiritual entity who can give talks but does not live Life like humans, practice some commandments or some “namas and niyamas,” without ever realizing if “I AM” those or “I am DOING” those. There is a huge difference.
Be nice, loving, compassionate, etc. Those are the teachings.
Because most Humans are not that, but they must behave like that. Nice, Loving and compassionate are concepts to practice, defined by lengthy words. We must fit into the definitions.
Inherent goodness in a person is found in the process of deconditioning, but it is thought and sold that further conditioning will make the trick.
Have you seen a salesman interacting with a potential customer?
The smile is fake. The interest in your needs is fake. The nice and charming ways are fake. Why?
There is an interest, a goal. Sales.
Every religion that has a goal for a follower such as heaven, paradise, god or any other lofty objective has an inherent interest, just like a salesman. However, religions (like salesmen) have a place in society, they have a reason to be: They change our conditioning into another type of conditioning, which we then call “truth,” true love, true morality, etc. That is to differentiate it from the one morality and love which are not “true.”
Here is my statement: Spiritual teachings are not needed to flourish in Life but Deconditioning is necessary to live a happy meaningful life. Before someone invents a “method” or “technique” and puts a catchy label for the masses such as “the True Tantra of Deconditioning,” let me say this, deconditioning cannot be taught. It has to be realized, we need to dissolve our luggage of emotional traumas. Deconditioning is not an idea to be understood, a concept to be practiced.
For lack of deconditioning; methods, techniques, steps are used to obtain something artificial which looks like the ideal, the objective in our minds.
Before trying to become some “spiritual” ideal, it is very important to know who you are for “You” are underneath the layers of conditioning.
In the knowledge of the self, freedom is not gained by fighting, but by giving up. Deconditioning is another word to describe that process. 🙂
Is there Life after death?
Generally, no. Neither for “you” or “I.”
What is death?
The complementary state of Life.
Is death painful?
Once “you” are death, No.
What happens after death?
You will find out, but “you” will not remember.
How does rebirth happen?
When “you” are no longer there, someone else is.
These kinds of questions will fill our minds. When a dear one dies, then we say : “How lucky I am !” and we will continue on with our “objectives,” “goals,” and “successful activities” as if there was no death at the end of the road, to wash away all of our “accomplishments.”
Our society has sold us the idea that there is a permanent “Me,” an unchanging “I” that needs to continue on in “heaven,” the “afterlife,” in another realm, even if it is “hell,” but “I” must continue.
In another realm, “I” will take a new label as a name: “Spirit” is good, “atma” (soul) is better…
A religion is nothing else but insurance for the “afterlife.” Your monthly payments are due now, while alive and then you are promised that “you” will get the pay off “over there.” What a sweet deal!
“The office world” will sell us “insurance” to be prepared for those events that we cannot control. With a little money back, we believe that we could compensate any “loss” from any “act of god.” But it doesn’t finish there. “I” have to take care of “my” family too, even though “I” am no longer here. The message is clear: “Live for others.” Worry, preoccupy in making sure that “part of you” survives very well, despite “you” going away.
Your heirs may not give a damn about the little cash you left, but “you” think that “you” have fulfilled your duties. A golden star in your chart when God counts your virtues for the final judgment, hell vs. heaven! Yeah It is all about “you.”
Our Life is filled with fear and then we fear death. Isn’t that a sorry state to be in?
If that “I” dies while living Life; who could die, when death arrives? That is the riddle!
I know, it is hard to “get it.” However, it is not meant to be “gotten.” It is meant to be experienced.
When? When you are ready. Until then, enjoy “your” Life.
Questions have been answered straight to the point, so free “yourself,” let your mind go for a walk, a long walk…. to enjoy. 🙂
Observe that I have purposely used conditioned terminology: Truth, Doctrine and God.
Those 3 words have all the ingredients to enhance any “spiritual” message, to make it sound important. That is the conditioning!
Life is. We live it. We are conscious of it. That is the gift.
To be conscious of BEING, to BE conscious of the surroundings including our own bodies, that is a fantastic experience!
When we wake up in the morning from sleeping, the gift of a new experience is right there. However, our minds will add conditioned thoughts to define our current newness with the past, it will unwind the reel of past experiences to shape up our perspective on things… That is how Life becomes the “same old thing.”
The interesting aspect is that we want to hang onto the known. That which is known to us, secure, unchangeable which basically follows the pattern of our mind: The mind welcomes static things, lifeless things, something that could be labeled and classified as “good or bad.” Those labels will remain unchanged through centuries of conditioning.
“Snake.” Observe the feeling that this word brings, the imagery, the emotions. Whatever it is, the bottom line is: Is it “good or bad”?
We are so lifeless when living through words!
The effect of hanging onto the known brings fear. Our minds are masters in the art of infusing fear.
Then, we search for God, we look for truth, for a doctrine to “save us” to keep us safe, to mitigate fear.
Life becomes a task, a DOING to accomplish that safety, whether that is through possession of goods, the pursue of god or the attainment of what is good. Do you see how similar those words are?
“God, goods, good.” Observe your feelings for those words, your emotions, your conditioning.
Life is away from all those words and their connotation and conditioning.
Your experience of BEING is related with feelings and those feelings get distorted through words, concepts, definitions.
Life is not about static “TRUTH.” It is about appreciation of perspectives (realities not reality) and thus, enjoyment of them. To allow them to change as Life changes, as BEING changes without the need of the artificial DOCTRINE (religious, political) that keeps things under control, to bring the sensation of safety, to calm down fear.
Away from that Life of concepts, ideals and conditioning Life IS.
Appreciation and enjoyment of “what is” without further labels, is the key for change, for self-transformation, self-realization, enlightenment and all of those “good” but meaningless words.
Life is away from our mind driven life. 🙂
The word AWARENESS has become accepted by the collective consciousness (masses) as a viable method for self-help, but the application of that “concept” to “improve” lives (help others) has become difficult.
Because intellectual understanding does not bring change in BEING. That is the main reason as to why all “methods” are only palliative in nature, like putting a bandage on a deep wound.
“So… there is no need for methods?”
Please don’t allow the conditioned mind to believe that it is either “no-method” or a particular method the “only truth.” It is neither following Krishnamurti (no-method) or Osho’s ideas (method) what brings “enlightenment.”
The word “method” and the word “enlightenment” are the obstacles to move forward. A “method” is mass produced. Enlightenment is individual. If you search for enlightenment, you will never find it. It is not found. It happens as a fruit ripens through a process of living life experiences.
The word AWARENESS is only a broad pointer. That is why, I’d like to narrow it down and use the pointer AWARENESS of CONDITIONING.
If we are not aware of our conditioning in our everyday activities and ideas, then we are sleeping and for that reason, “methods” become important. “Methods” to get out of our drowsiness then we may become aware, awaken… Aware of what?
Of our conditionings. No methods needed anymore.
Now, you see how the question: What is the truth: To follow a method or not to follow one?… Is truly a conditioned question. It all depends on your BEING awake or BEING asleep , not on a method or lack of it.
As a kid, did you ever want a skateboard or an expensive shirt that your friends had, but your parents could not afford?
Do you see the conditioning? Probably not as a kid. Then, it became a trauma.
What about if you are well into your 20s without a girlfriend or a boyfriend. Do you see the pressure that society inflicts on you? The labels that you may get? That is conditioning. That collective pressure changes individuals against their will.
What about if you are married and do not have kids, or only have one. Don’t you feel the pressure to have kids or to have the “couple” and to buy a pet for them? That is conditioning. Observe how it manipulates.
What about your profession? Are you happy but not paid well? That will be the source of social pressure for you or your family. Conditioning.
Do you believe in God even though you have not seen him or experienced him? That is a well known conditioning. Why do you believe in what you believe? What happens if you drop it? Can you do that without feeling guilty? The feeling of guilt is behind conditioning.
Do you see money and power as the only worthwhile things to pursue in Life? That is heavy conditioning. Buying defines you. You are what you own. Nothing else.
Are you over 40? Not “good looking”? Do you have a handicap? under tall? Are you homosexual? Middle class? Do you feel that you fit in society? That is conditioning.
No one could ever fit the ideal of the “perfect citizen/person” that society unconsciously is putting in our minds.
Observe how those traits bother you. The buttons that it pushes. Observe your efforts to deny those things, to cover them up. Observe the traumas. Do you want a “solution”? Do you want to change “what is” into something else just to blend into the conditioned collective consciousness?
You see, the “solution” is not to change to the whims of the masses and the collective consciousness, but to merely be AWARE of the game, so you can play in it, and not be played by it.
Become aware of the conditioning and AWARE of how your actions, your DOING are not made through “free will” (you may think you have free will) but through conditioning.
That is the starting point of awakening.
When most “seekers” talk about “duality,” they have no experiential awareness of what they are talking about. They cannot recognize “duality” in their day to day lives. It is just another concept to “talk the talk.” If you wish to understand what is conveyed here, only recognize these words in your daily Life experience.
Duality is the general perception of Life that we have learned in society. It is the starting point of beliefs systems, morality and laws.
” This is right, that is wrong” is duality. “This is good, that is bad,” is also duality.
Any spiritual belief system, any philosophy, any world class guru who explains “his ideas” about what to do and what not to do, is preaching duality… and so, is any God speaking through mediums, holy books or while using words to convey “his” messages.
The most obvious observation is that our language supports duality, so our concepts and understanding will be in duality. Anything written/spoken including this writing, is full of duality, thus look beyond the words to understand.
“Do this, Don’t do that.” “If I were you, I’d practice this.” “This is self-realization, that is not.” Duality.
Life in non-dual. It in ONE.
Do you see the issue?
Life is “Yes and No.” Both at the same time. In practical terms: If we reject something in Life by fully supporting the opposite, we will experience that which we reject. If we support “Yes” and reject “No,” it is certain (money back guarantee) that at some point in our journey, we will support “No.”
“This is good, that is bad” is OK to explain things through the shortcomings of language. It is Ok, to make a point; but if we have invested a deep belief in that by calling it “truth,” we have defined ourselves through that belief, identified through that and since Life changes, that which IS (defined, identified,) will not BE…. Sooner or later.
The complete experience of Life is “Yes and No.”
Life is not interested in conforming with human morality.
Typically, when we observe someone in Life who is not conforming with our beliefs and conditioning, we compare. That is an opportunity to validate our conditioning by judging someone, by rejecting that which they ARE. That is duality.
In Life, while they are experiencing “NO,” the other person is experiencing “YES.” That is all there is.
Non-Duality, embraces both experiences as part of the continuous in Life. There is no hard “line” limiting a “Yes” and a “NO.” There is a subtle process as when day changes into night. Most are unaware and unable to pinpoint when exactly the change has occurred. That has no consequence. What is important is to notice that everything is change and people’s consciousness ARE at different positions of that spectrum. Thus, even though, the labels “good and bad” exist in duality; in another consciousness, everything is “good” as it is, for it will change…. it will not be… 🙂