Conversation with a friend.
Friend: Hi Magdi. So as i was learning more about the universe, i saw how small we actually are…It’s like our bodies are nothing compared to existence.
Reply: The mind speaks of small and large. Truth is beyond such treatise. Consciousness does not perceive small or large… it is the mind that does.
Friend: Yes and that’s exactly what i’m looking for, the truth!
Yes, but yesterday i was like hit in the head! i’ve realized how little i know about anything. Life itself is a miracle. But we are so unaware of what’s actually happening or what is this consciousness. Is it the mind that makes sense of it all?
Reply: The mind is limited. Thought is limited and cannot reach beyond itself. The mind perceives a limited external reality…. That is the illusion…
Reality is what observes and not what is observed.
Friend: Yes thoughts are limted! but what are they ? Reality is what observes. Am i this reality ?
Reply: Thought are the tools of consciousness playing the game of internal mind and external world. Thoughts label and thus the impression of an objective world.
What you truly are is the undivided consciousness, universal, aware presence…
The unseen, unmanifest Reality. There is no you or me in wholeness.
The mind is like the prism that seemingly divides the white light into infinite colors.
Friend: Yes but it is hard to see that, especially if i see myself only as one of many billion humans.
Reply: When you look through the mind, you perceive billion humans and myriad things. Look back to the source. Awareness is undivided. From that perspective, which is the perspective of reality, the reality of consciousness, you are not the body.
You are aware of the body.
Friend: Ahh that’s a great example. Yes, and to discover that, i need to turn inward.
But there is nothing if thoughts aren’t there, is there?
Reply: The reality of consciousness does not need thoughts. Consciousness shines in the presence or absence of thought.
Friend: Yes. So what is the realtionship between existence and consciousness?
Reply: Consciousness is the reality of the mind, the reality of the world/body/mind. One reality.
Like the sunshine is the reality of the moonshine
Like water is the reality of ice and steam
Like the dreamer is the reality of all dreams
Friend: Yes consciousness is the substance of everything there is, matter and energy. I see that my consciousness is disturbed right now, because i can’t recognize it or see it or anything. It’s hidden
Reply: Consciousness is never disturbed.
The mind is disturbed when it believes itself to be real and mistakes the images on the screen to be real. When the world/body mind is mistaken to be real, the reality of consciousness is overlooked and there is suffering since the mind perceives a separate internal body mind and an external world.
Although consciousness is hidden from the senses, from the mind, it is not hidden from itself. It is not hidden from you, consciousness.
Friend: Yes I understand this, and i don’t know who understands it!! There is a feeling of understanding and there is also a feeling that there is actually no mind. It’s all just continuous thoughts. The sense of continuity is always there.
Reply: You are aware of the thoughts. You are aware of the mind. Indeed, there is no such thing as a mind. By mind I refer to thought impressions that lead to a world/body mind.
The continuity is that of awareness. The eternity of consciousness. The mirror is eternal, the images are not.
Friend: The images are not real, that’s what i need to realize. Until now, every image seems real to me.
Reply: You perceive the images. While YOU/Consciousness do not come and go, the images come and go. The mind comes and goes, thoughts come and go, body sensations come and go.
Reply: You are aware of the sensations. You are aware of thought/[perception.
Friend: I’m aware of thoughts, perception as feelings in my body.
Reply: Thoughts, perceptions, bodily sensations…..They are images that arise in the mirror. No need to figure the images out.
Simply recognize the mirror, the awareness… the Self is eternal and is not a thing, not an object. Consciousness is the reality of all perceptions/sensations/thought.
Friend: The mirror cannot be recognized with the mind? What is it that recognizes it? Who will recognize the mirror consciousness ?
Reply: Recognition is a Self recognition without any medium. Consciousness recognizes itself…. without mind. It is a direct apperception.
Friend: Direct perception outside of time and space?
Reply: Yes. Our true nature is freedom… like infinite space… intelligent aware free infinite space
Friend: That must be Freedom from everything. If i stopped my thoughts or made them quiet, will i be able to recognize this reality?
Reply: The one who will stop your thoughts is itself a thought.
Friend: Ahhhh! yes true. So there must be a process to find the truth? Some teachers teach self inquiry and meditation.
Reply: Love for the truth leads you home. When Inquiry into the reality of your experience is continuous, your love for truth will lead you home.
Friend: Yes, in my experience the more i question reality and go deep, the more i lose desire for everything.
But i am somehow afraid that if i lose all desires, i would be in trouble
Reply: The worldly desires become surrendered in the love for truth. When you love God, then God takes care of you and loves you back. There is no greater love.
Trouble is imagining yourself to be an internal separate self in an external world.
What follows is the fear of death of the identity… the real trouble…
Friend: Yes, that fear is absurd. Yes. There is also a lot of attachement to relationships, parents, friends… If i lose desires then all my feelings about people will somehow vanish.
Reply: Attachment softens but Love remains. Love is truth. Attachment is effortlessly replaced by love… It is not detachment. Detachment is still of the mind.
Photo by Nabil Attia