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Thursday, January 1, 2015

Overcoming Illusion

Gaining Enlightenment
Overcoming Illusion

Temporary note: This essay was written a bit at a time over several years. Still working on cohesiveness. This note will go poof! when I am satisfied.

Overcoming illusion is as easy as 1-2-3!

Expecting any literature, including this essay, to reveal new truths of a spiritual nature is seeking. Expecting or desiring enlightenment is seeking, as is meditating for a spiritual reason. Likewise, believing any sort of religious concepts is holding on to that which would otherwise fall away. Seeking/desire also happens in other areas of life. Seeking is destructive to all methods presented here to. You don’t have to quit your religion - just put it aside (thoroughly!) for the purpose of this exercise - and be patient!.

It may happen that anatta (see below) may precede freedom from seeking/desire.

2. Just be (Hindu). Enjoy the aliveness. Aliveness does not need one who is alive.

3. Understand that this is it!
No angelic choirs will sing, and you will not see the face of God.

Another method based on FUN!

Have fun. Best is mindless fun where you lose yourself. When you lose yourself you gain the universe: as close as the next big smile or bout of laughter. Awe and wonder can affect one similarly. This method may not seem to have "lasting effect" - after all, fun starts and ends. Those who wish to experience bliss in the absence of overt fun may try the following nothingness method. There are, however, no unenlightened individuals, so equally valid is: don't worry about it!

Are you expecting more? Just what are you expecting? Maybe you think it should be harder. If so, see below, though it's not much harder! And, of course, any difficulty is also illusory!

Here is another method based on being nothing at all:

Just quit give up the idea of being! (Buddhist) Understand self as nothing, not even a concept. This is called anatta. Life happens, aliveness happens, as if in free fall, without need of any sort of "one who lives". Watch life (watch your `interest in this essay) and your body being animated without your participation. Doing tasks while cognizing anatta allows a glimpse of Reality that complements insight from meditation. Relax: this is it! Abide in recognition of the illusory nature of self. (This gives the mind something to do - which it craves.) Then come to understand that non-beingness is the ultimate wideness. There is nothing beyond non-beingness. That is as "deep" (or high) as one can possibly go (there is no one to resist such going): the Ultimate Depth. Everything else is phenomena occurring on the screen of non-beingness.

One's whole perspective is (pretty much) instantly shifted by simply ceasing to assume one's existence. This is what I term the Great Change of Perspective that is the end of seeking (yes, it's that easy!). The Change can be noticed upon experiencing closed eyes. No longer is one simply staring at the back of eyelids. The ephemeral (nature of) constructed self is most easily sensed in the midst of silence."There is Consciousness along with quietness in the mind; this is exactly the state to be aimed at." Further support of anatta as the end of seeking is the powerful experience of bliss, which happens to me instantly upon cognizing anatta, in meditation or not. Bliss-blocking may be do to the energetic constriction of "I do this" or "I suffer that"

Wholeness can only be perceived when there is no one looking for it. This (being not) is the mirror image of being all there is or "just be", above, so it is the same.

A friend of mine had trouble understanding non-beingness. A gentler introduction is in this instruction on Vipassana meditation, recommended by Sam Harris in his book Waking Up. Sam suggests meditating with eyes open. Understand, after some experience, that observing rising and falling, or more accurately, knowing rising and falling, does not require one who knows.

Meditation with closed eyes is simply to sit (or lay...) with eyes closed. Do not suppress thoughts. Do nothing: do not even breathe or suppress breath. Ramana Maharshi's suggestion to "first: find out who it is who meditates" is accomplished with the perspective of anatta. Meditation with eyes open is simply to be, again while doing nothing else.

Another angle (of being nothing) is to do nothing at all: sometimes called silence. This is, perhaps, best begun by laying down, then, before sleepiness sets in, be aware of doing nothing at all. Do not breathe: breath happens. After some time, a thought might happen: continue doing nothing while thoughts rise and fall. An itch might be scratched, again, while doing nothing. Finally, life goes on, while doing nothing. This event may be repeated until a cognitive structure is built that mirrors the non-activity/silence quality of self. Paradoxically, perhaps, this is the ultimate aliveness.

It is good to have a bit of a ritual (hey, I'm autistic - I'm expert on rituals!) where one, at the same time and place most days, can enjoy non-beingness. Part of non-beingness is not experiencing desires, so a ritual obviates the need for even the desire of non-beingness. This ritual doesn't have to be long, in fact, it is best kept short. And rest assured, what is happening is the Real thing due to the Ultimate Depth quality previously described. Note also that this is not meditation because meditation requires being (one who meditates).

What happens by all methods here is that a neural structure is built by which one can recall the knowing of that which is Real.

Another method based on Mindfulness meditation:

Mindfulness works best when there is no doer involved. For this to happen - give up doership! Understand that a mindful outlook happens, then (especially when life get's hectic) does not happen. This impermanent quality is what is: understand that ego-self has nothing to do with it. Abandon, for the moment, at least, any notion of free will: mindfulness is now happening or not happening, with no one making it happen or not happen. It is best to not worry about mindfulness. That way, when mindfulness happens, the spontaneous (without cause) nature of this event is obvious.

Mindfulness practice is being fully present in all that happens. Actions are not just noted, but are noted automatically, by nobody.

Mindfulness meditation is watching one’s thoughts and sensations in a dispassionate way. Who is watching thoughts? After some experience with mindfulness, one may realize that the basic thought, which spawns others, is I am. So mindfulness can lead to observing the I am on the screen of I am not. This blissful void, from where the “I am” thought is known, is home - abide there.

A mindful outlook can also be brought to bear on Ramana Maharshi's suggestion to dive into self. Not being the doer of this can, I have noticed, cause the breath to momentarily cease. The memory formed of this can then be recalled as a reference point of illusion-free attention. This is were the Ego and the Infinite meet. In fact, I feel that this sort of directed attention may decrease the psychic distance from mind to void: from individual identity to universal identity. Life appears as a magical sort of sparkle.

What is postulated, then obviated, here, may be called the Great Change of Perspective (the G-C-of-P), or, equivalently, one's apparent awakening. Even a soft spot for any sort of religion or doctrine can hinder the G-C-of-P.

Some may question why I, a nobody, should have the audacity to hold forth on spiritual enlightenment. I am a shy electrical engineer, too shy and autistic to be a teacher or desire fame of any sort. In my defense, I state here that what is suggested above is a natural, common experience.


  1. I would like to share this and other articles you've written with several of my communities. May I have you're permission to use an excerpt to entice my communities to click on the article, thus coming here? I will not add or detract.. But am quite sure it will be of interest to them. Please let me know as soon as you can as I am busy and will forget about it if too long in awaiting a reply. (ADHD label on me.. Hahaha)

  2. No problem, +Boston BB, I wrote this little essay to share. I just revised it a bit, and will continue to do so, so check back in a few weeks.