Awakening = befriending life

 

What is awakening about? There are many ways to answer that question, and one way is to say it’s about befriending life.

Befriending life can be as simple (and difficult!) as befriending our experience as it is in immediacy. And especially the experiences that my human self doesn’t like and tend to recoil from. How is it to befriend it? What happens? What fears does it bring up in me? How does it feel to befriend it, or to make small steps towards befriending it?

We can also befriend parts of us (subpersonalities), for instance through dialogue. We listen to what it wants to tell us. Get to know it. Relate to it as a good friend, as much as we can. That, and other forms of inquiry, helps us befriend our experience.

Befriending life in this way is an aspect of awakening, and it can prepare the ground for awakening, but in itself it’s not really awakening.

Awakening is when what we are – that which all experience happens within and as – notices itself. It’s when the divine recognizes all – including that which our personality likes the least – as itself. This can happen all at once, but usually happens more gradually and in steps.

For instance, the divine may take itself to be a separate self while it intuitively senses what it is or experiences it in glimpses. And then it gradually recognizes that it is the divine recognizing itself as all there is. The “center of gravity” of what it takes itself to be shifts from a separate being and more into the wholeness of what it is. As part of this, it may also find itself as capacity for all there is. And it may keep on discovering and experiencing new aspects of itself.

We can say that this too is befriending life. It’s life befriending itself as all there is. It’s life noticing itself as life. It’s life shifting its identification from taking itself as a part of itself (this human self) and into itself as a whole, and as that which content of experience happens within and as.

There are also other sides to awakening. For instance, allowing our human self (psyche, subpersonalities) to heal and align within this “new” context of all as the divine. To live from what we are noticing itself, and explore and discover how to live from it. To mature within it. All of that is also life befriending itself.

So in all of these ways, we can say that awakening is life – or reality, or the divine, or the One – befriending itself.

See Why befriending life? for more on this topic, including why (perhaps) we life in a universe where this befriending isn’t the default for us.

Note: Yes, I am using “life” to mean existence, reality, the divine, or the One, and not as life vs death or life vs something inanimate. It’s life in the broadest sense. Why do I use it the word in this way? Mainly because it somehow feels intuitively right. And also because in this context, all is alive. The whole universe and existence as a whole is alive in the sense that it is consciousness, or the divine, or the One. (See other posts on small/psychological vs big/spiritual interpretation on awakening for a perspective on this.)

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Initial notes….

  • Awakening = befriending life
    • awakening can be understood in many different ways
      • and one aspect of it, or one way of talking about it, is befriending life
    • befriending…
      • our experience here and now
      • befriending parts of us
      • befriending the experience/parts that we traditionally have rejected the most, been most reactive to, most fearful about
    • also
      • notice what we are, find ourselves as it, shift center of gravity (of what we take ourselves to be) into it
      • notice all as the divine, recognize as the divine, the divine recognizing all – including the experiences our personality finds most difficult – as itself
      • which is befriending life in another way (additional layers)
    • and…
      • allow our human parts to heal/realign within this new (conscious) context
      • live from it, explore/discover how to live from it
      • mature within it
      • which is befriending life in another way
    • ….

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Draft….

Awakening has many aspects and there are many ways of talking about it. And one way of talking about it is befriending life.

Befriending life can be as simple (and difficult!) as befriending our experience as it is in immediacy. And especially the experiences that my human self doesn’t like and tend to recoil from. How is it to befriend it? What happens? What fears does it bring up in me? How does it feel to befriend it, or to make small steps towards befriending it?

We can also befriend parts of us (subpersonalities), for instance through dialogue. We listen to what it wants to tell us. Get to know it. Relate to it as a good friend, as much as we can. That, and other forms of inquiry, helps us befriend our experience.

Befriending life in this way is an aspect of awakening, and it can prepare the ground for awakening, but in itself it’s not really awakening.

Awakening is when we notice what we are (that which all experience happens within and as), find ourselves as it, and the center of gravity (of what we take ourselves to be) shifts more into it. It’s when we notice all as the divine, and when the divine recognizes all – including that which our personality likes the least – as itself.

And we can say that this too is befriending life. It’s life befriending itself as all there is. It’s life noticing itself as life. It’s life shifting it’s identification from taking itself as a part of itself (this human self) and into itself as a whole, and as that which content of experience happens within and as.

There are also other sides to awakening. For instance, allowing our human self (psyche, subpersonalitites) to heal and align within this new (conscious) context. To live from what we are noticing itself, and explore and discover how to live from it. To mature within it. And all of that is also life befriending itself.

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