About setting an intention:
Question: “Set your intention” – does that apply in nonduality? I wonder how other things might be different when we have set an intention, if this does not perpetuate a feeling of separate self.”~~~
Reply: Yes, setting an intention does apply in nonduality.
The impact of setting an intention depends on the origin of the intention, meaning where the intention is coming from.When the intention is on behalf of the imagined separate self, the me-person, the intention is ‘objective’. Meaning we are seeking a gross or subtle experience on behalf of the me-person (what we imagine ourself to be). That is when we will experience the swing of success/failure. We will experience temporary fulfillment when our intention is realized and disappointment when it is not.
When the source of our intention is truth, meaning when our interest is in truth and not in personal satisfaction, the intention is not focused on an ‘object’, not focused on an experience. This sort of intention does not have a focal ending, rather it is interest and love for truth.When I set my intention on realization of true nature, on the realization of truth, on the understanding of ‘What am I truly?’ ‘What is the reality of my experience?’ the path is not focused on a specific ‘objective’ end result. Maybe that is what we refer to as impersonal intention.
Along the path of nonduality, there may be numerous occasions of setting an intention. For example, we may set our intention to give some space for our feelings rather than get immediately triggered to fix them. Or we may set our intention on studying and meditating the scriptures to gain a deeper understanding. Or we may set our intention to forgiving and allowing when we notice the judgmental aspect of our mind. Etc.Many sub-intentions can be inspired by the main intention to awaken to truth. Similarly many sub-intentions can be inspired by our interest in having a better personal experience. Sooner or later, we realize that pursuing better personal experiences does not reveal the fullness, the happiness and peace which we seek.