I usually don’t make references to traditions here since I feel that the references are implicit everywhere, and I want to keep it simple. But sometimes, it can be helpful – or at least interesting – to more explicitly look at traditions. They offer great questions and pointers for own exploration.
One of the terms from the Indian traditions is sat cit ananda – existence consciousness bliss.
My process – as it shows up in dreams and otherwise in my life – is inviting me to radical letting go of attachment to ideas (of past, future, present and anything else). As this has been coming up in Process Work explorations of my life and dreams, I see how helpful it can be to personalize this shift for me.
In its impersonal form, it is a finding peace with the continuous death of everything as it is and its rebirth as something else. The content of the eternal Present is always fresh, different, new. God never repeats itself.
And a radical peace with this is only found in the realization of Selflessness, in awakening to/as the Ground happening as the phenomena in the eternal Present. Awakening to what is, with no I anywhere.
This is all fine – it is a beautiful process in itself. Yet, it also has a somewhat impersonal tint to it.
Absolute and relative
From the Absolute, this all just is.
It is Ground forming itself into the world of phenomena. It is emptiness dancing. There may be distinction of this end (human self) and that end (Ground), of impersonal and personal, but also the recognition of it all as just stories – just labels and a level of abstraction added to what is.
From the Relative, the realm of polarities (and stories) emerge. The process can be seen as personal and impersonal, at this end (human self) and at that end (Ground). And if that is a useful way of looking at it, then why not.
Impersonal and personal at this end
This is impersonal at this end, in that it goes far beyond my human self. The Ground is all phenomena. It is one ocean, forming itself into waves of particular discernible phenomena. It is God appearing as trees, mountains, clouds, dogs, cats, flowers, humans, cities, cultures, planets, galaxies, universe(s).
And it is also personal at this end, in two ways.
This human self is Ground happening as phenomena. Any human self already is Ground forming itself into the appearance of a human self, so the Ground is already personal in that sense.
And this human self can reorganize and mature within the realization of Selflessness. When the Ground awakens to its own nature of no I anywhere, then Selflessness becomes personal in a different way – lived in, through, and as a particular human life.
Impersonal and personal at that end
It can also be seen as impersonal and personal at that end, as Ground.
In its impersonal form, it is emptiness dancing, Ground forming itself in the world of phenomena. Continuous death of what is and rebirth of something else. Always new, different, fresh. A continuous radical rebirth.
And it can also be seen as personal. Or rather, the connection with it can be personalized, as they do in Hinduism and (especially) Tibetan Buddhism. There is already something personal at this end, in the form of this human self. And there can also be something personal at the other – Ground – end. In this case, it can take the forms of Shiva and/or Kali and similar deities of death and rebirth.
Coming from a habitual identification as a human being, this may be an easier way into it. It is no longer a somewhat cold impersonal process, but personal as well – an intimate process of befriending Shiva and/or Kali. In a certain sense, it becomes more real for us that way.
It can be very helpful, as long as we also recognize that this too is only a tool, a story, an abstraction – a way of easing into it. The danger here is obviously that we can take it as more real than it is, that we mistake the map (Shiva, Kali) for the terrain (Ground).
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