Experiencing many dimensions of being allows you to be more fluid and not be stuck in unity, fullness, emptiness, or the eternal.– Adyashanti in The Fluidity of Consciousness
Yes, we cannot really prevent this fluidity anyway. And it’s far more interesting to allow it.
THE FLUIDITY OF WHO I AM
As who I am, as this human being in the world, I have innumerable parts and sides to me. Here too, it’s easier and more real and interesting to allow the richness of who I am and have some fluidity in what I access and even live from. Different situations call for different sides of me.
As a human being, the world is my mirror. Whatever stories I have about someone or something in the world, I can turn these stories around to myself and find examples of where they are true. This allows me to consciously recognize and embrace more sides of myself and find some fluidity in how I relate to them.
THE FLUIDITY OF WHAT I AM
As what I am, I also have several aspects. I can find myself as capacity for it all, which helps soften identification as anything in particular within the content of my field of experience.
I can find myself as what my field of experience happens within and as. Here, I find that my field of experience is one, and any distinctions come from an overlay of thought. This human self and the wider world happens within the same seamless field of experience. It’s one. And I find myself as oneness. This helps me shift out of my familiar identity as a human self with a wider world as other.
I can explore different facets or expressions of what I am. As oneness, I am also love – not a felt love but the love of the left hand removing a splinter of the right. I can find myself as the void allowing it all. I can find myself as wisdom – at least the wisdom of noticing what I am. I can find myself as the wisdom that comes when I examine when the mind gets caught up in a thought, and what’s more true for me. I can find myself as fierceness in cutting through my own delusion when it comes up. And so on.
THE FLUIDITY OF WHO AND WHAT I AM TOGETHER
Even when we find ourselves as what we are, we are still also this human self in the world. It’s just not our most fundamental identity. A big part of this is exploring noticing what we are while we live our human life in the world. How is it to live from that noticing in this situation? How is it to invite this part of me still operating from separation consciousness to realign within this noticing?
In daily life, noticing what I am is something more intentional and in the foreground, and sometimes it’s more in the background, especially if I focus on daily life tasks that require more attention. And as a human being in the world, different parts of me come up in different situations, either because the situation calls for it or because something unhealed in me got triggered.
There is a natural and inevitable fluidity here.
WHERE WE ACTUALLY GET STUCK
We don’t really get stuck in unity, fullness, or anything else. It’s not possible.
In reality, we get stuck in the viewpoint of a thought. We identify as it, and we seek temporary refuge in the viewpoint of a thought.
Why? Mainly because it helps us not face a particular fear – the unmet feeling of the fear, and the unexamined fearful thoughts behind it.
Even if we hold onto an idea of what we are, and perceive and live as if it’s true, we cannot make it true. We are still the wholeness of what and who we are, and there is an inherent fluidity in this that cannot be stopped. We only pretend we can.
EXAMPLES OF GETTING STUCK
Adya mentioned a few examples of where we may appear to get stuck.
Most people get “stuck” in their identification as a human being, and taking themselves to most fundamentally be this human being. Even here, there is some fluidity. What we are is still here, and we are familiar with it even if we don’t recognize what it is. We still find ourselves as it in some situations, for instance in flow states.
As a human self, we can get a bit stuck in certain identities – gender, age, nationality, political orientation, positions on all sorts of things, abilities, skills, better or worse than others, and so on.
When we get interested in what we are, we can get stuck in ideas about this too.
We can take ourselves as capacity for the world, and downplay oneness or our human life in the world. We can focus on oneness, and downplay capacity or the importance of distinctions. We can emphasize love and overlook the importance of being a good steward of our human life and set clear – and loving – boundaries.
When we get stuck in these ideas about who and what we are, it’s innocent. It’s understandable and natural. We are flailing a bit. We scare ourselves, and tell ourselves it’s safer this way.
EXPLORING FLUIDITY AND STUCKNESS
One way to explore the natural and inevitable fluidity in all of this is to notice the fluidity that’s already here.
As a human being, I am already far more fluid than any of my identities. I inevitably perceive and live from far more sides of me than I am consciously aware of.
As what I am, all the different aspects mentioned above – and innumerable other – are already here. I can notice and explore this too.
We can also explore this in a more structured way, for instance through the Big Mind process which is explicitly designed to help us discover and explore all these facets of who and what we are, how we relate to each one, what advice they have for us, how it is to perceive and live from and as each one, and so on.
And finding this fluidity is also a function of identifying and exploring any belief or identity we notice we have, for instance through The Work of Byron Katie or the Living Inquiries.
IS IT A PROBLEM TO BE STUCK?
Not really. It’s natural, understandable, and innocent.
It’s part of being human, and it’s part of the awakening process and exploring how to live from it.
As mentioned above, we cannot prevent the inherent fluidity in who and what we are. But we can pretend we are just or mainly something a thought tells us we are. And this is inevitably smaller and more one-dimensional than the immense richness and variety of who and what we are. We perceive and live as if we are less than we are, and that’s inherently uncomfortable.