I am interested in the process from opacity to transparency to popping.

More precisely, from an opaque and unquestioned self of a separate self, to a glimpse of selflessness and a vague sense of self transparent to the ground, to a realization of selflessness that pops into the foreground.


First, there is an unquestioned self of self. What do you mean, of course there is a self here! Isn’t that obvious?


Then, we may have a glimpse of selflessness – of the divine mind, Big Mind, Buddha Mind, Dao, Brahman, God, Spirit. We realize that everything arises within and as the divine mind, and that this human self is just a pattern of the tapestry. Or at least we have a taste of it, an intuition of it, a sense of it.

And here, our habitual and vague sense of self can become transparent to this ground – to everything as Spirit, as God. There is a habitual vague sense of self, which comes up stronger some times and less strong other times.

When we look, when we inquire into it, we see that it only comes from a belief in the thought “I”. It is not really there. What we placed it on – sensations, feelings, emotions, thoughts, attention, awareness, are all just parts of the infinitely much larger tapestry. There is no “I” inherent in any of it. Or we can say that the whole of it, beyond and including all polarities, is the only “I”. Although not even that is really an “I” as there is no “other”.


Then, this realization of selflessness may pop. It pops into the foreground. It is obvious. Crystal clear. No question about it. No need to look for it. Everything is the divine mind. The groundless ground forming itself into this temporary and fluid play of forms. Emptiness dancing.

The human self is still there. The only difference is that there is no longer any exclusive identification with it, or anything else. Nothing has any inherent “I” in it.

There is the realization that our human self is the local manifestation of the movements of the whole. The whole functions temporarily through and as this human self. There is no hint of any separate doer, only the doing.

Center of gravity

Throughout this process, the center of gravity moves along the continuum from opaqueness, via transparency, to popping. And then back to opacity again for all I know – just to make it more interesting.

And there is fluidity within this process as well. Anyone may come up within a period where another one is more stable. And there may also be fluctuations between two for a while as well, or even among all three.


What is awakening? Is it when we have a glimpse and transparency? Is it when it pops? It is even when there is the awakening to opacity?

To me, they are all awakenings.

First, there is an awakening to opacity. An awakening to how it is to function as and through a human self, in the world of phenomena. An also an awakening to how it is to experience an identity with the finite, as separate, and the suffering coming alive through that.

Then, a middle ground of awakening to the transparency of the self. There is still the residue of habit, of a habitual sense of self. But there is also an early realization of selflessness. The self is transparent to the ground.

Then, the divine mind awakens more fully to itself. Selflessness pops. The ground pops. It is all revealed, clearly, beyond any question, as the divine mind. As the play of God. As emptiness dancing.

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