Living a Non-Personal Life

ROCK HOUND SP, NM—Sitting in the dentist chair, the bright light shining, the drill whining, the spittle flying, my conditioned reaction is to tense up and wait for a jolt of pain. But instead, using that tension as a reminder, I let go and surrender.

Suddenly, it is not my body that is being worked on, it is not me at all. I’m just inside looking out. Nothing that is happening to this body is personal.

When your consciousness shifts from Radiance to Emptiness—when your sense of self moves from a thin outline to nothing at all—then everything, this body included, has the same feeling of importance.

Which is to say, not important at all.

One of the key aspects to surrender—to stop fighting life—is to stop taking life so personally.

You can practice this anytime you wish. Just do the following:

Stop… taking… life… so… personally.

Piece of cake.

What The Levels Love

Hauling Red Peppers

CABALLO LAKE SP, NM—With almost no thought put into this, just a quick review of my experiences and observations…

What Each Level Loves:

The Mortal Level loves control and winning and comfort.

The Soul Level loves living authentically in accordance with your ideals and beliefs.

The Radiant Level loves the flow of Love and Light, and the feeling of intimacy with the Divine.

The Emptiness Level loves the expansiveness of the boundary-less state.

You could say these are the values of the various levels. The lower the level, the “louder” the love (more intense the feeling)—which is why the lower levels tend to win out when there’s an inner conflict.

Beyond Enlightenment

Picnic Table by the River


A slight revision to my Path of Mystical Oneness:

  • The Mortal Level: You as a personal story
  • The Soul Level: You as an eternal, individual consciousness
  • The Radiant Level: You as an opening for the Divine
  • The Emptiness Level: You with no boundaries or separation
  • Mystical Oneness: Not a level, but the union of all levels

The Emptiness Level (what I was calling Oneness) is what the majority of nondual teachers mean by enlightenment.

Since most spiritual teachers believe in an all-or-nothing approach (“You’re either enlightened or you’re not”), they imply that Emptiness is “good” and the Mortal Level (the only other level they recognize) is “bad”.

They believe that the Mortal level must be dropped.

This is simply not the case.

What has been clarifying over the past few months (from around The Paradox and up through Mortal Level Pain) is that each level is an aspect of the whole, the union of which leads to Mystical Oneness (or Oneness if She hasn’t revealed Herself to you yet).

Just laying a foundation here. Nothing has really changed in what I’ve been saying for years, but the clarification has some implications—implications which I’ll delve into soon.

The Illusion of Separation

The Open Window

Taos Ski Valley, NM

The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are out there.
— Yasutani Roshi

The mind can grasp this concept fairly easily:

Boundaries and borders are just in our heads. The sense of separation is just a persistent thought.

To live it? Not so easy.

When you stop living as a Mortal and start living as a Soul, your boundaries start to fade.

When you stop living as a Soul and start living as Radiance, your boundaries fade even more.

Finally, when you stop living as Radiance and start living as Oneness, when you drop the belief in separation altogether, then you are free of the “fundamental delusion.”

You must deeply believe that separation is an illusion. It has to be felt. It’s not just a concept to be grasped.

To awaken, Oneness must be lived, not just understood.

The less there is of you, the more there is of Her.

Life on the Hill

Standing Squirrel

Sumner Lake SP, NM—On the lake, a fish leaps into the air, its yellow belly glistening, its tail slapping the water’s surface before it splashes back into the depths.

A small white heron struts in the grass, darting forward erratically as it snaps at some invisible prey.

Down below, an old man struggles with his canoe by the boat ramp. He eventually slides it into the water, then gingerly steps inside, pushes off and paddles silently across the lake.

The heron, seeing the dock is clear, takes flight. He soars downward and alights on the ramp. He settles in for a moment, making sure the area is safe, then peers deeply into the water.

A squirrel pops her head above a rock at the edge of the cliff. Cautiously she comes forward, sniffing the ground, stopping, evaluating. Then she shuffles forward again. She pokes her nose in the grass and pulls forth a morsel. She sits back on her haunches and eats it, her black eyes like tiny shiny marbles. Finished, she stands up and looks at me. I point my camera, shoot her picture, and lean back into the chair just as a seagull floats by overhead.

I close my eyes.

The sun warms my face and I listen to the breeze and the waves lapping at the shore below.

Across the lake, the seagull caws.

How To Find Enlightenment – The Explanation

I decided to do a video to explain the last two “How To Find Enlightenment” posts. Videos seem to convey the feel of being—which is really what Oneness is all about. Enjoy.

How to Find Enlightenment (In One Word)

Fog And Bush And Tree

Steele Creek Park, COE Camp, Whitney, TX

Want to know what Oneness/Enlightenment feels like?

All you have to do is the following:


(Next: Explaining this and the previous post.)