The Layers of Samadhi

I’ve written several articles before about the layers of samadhi or transcendence described in the Yoga Sutra. These are the settling into the waves, then surface of the ocean of being.

When we wake up or become Self Realized, that inner samadhi becomes ongoing. Inner peace becomes ever-present behind the usual day-to-day life. We’re essentially in activity and deep meditation simultaneously.

Some people consider this the end of techniques. We can feel done and awake. If we’re already there, what need is there for going beyond? In my case, there was no longer a person to meditate so … Continue Reading…


There is a curious experience we have as we grow into new stages of development. We forget what it was like to be in our prior stage. This is very simply because we remember prior experiences from where we are now, not from how we were when the experiences happened.

For example, when we think back to events when we were 12 years old, we remember from where we are now, not from how we were at the time. We recall our preteen experience as an adult. This is true throughout our life. We give our teen children advice from … Continue Reading…

Adyashanti and Michael Rodriguez on Buddha at the Gas Pump

I quite enjoy Adyashanti’s pragmatic take on the awakening process. I’ve written various articles on his books like Falling into Grace or The End of Your World. Last fall, I posted a conversation Rick Archer had between Adya and Susanne Marie on the post-Self shift.

Prior to the Science and Nonduality conference last month, Rick spent time with Michael and Adya, followed by a 3 hour recorded conversation.

They explored a wide range of topics including how you can get stuck post-awakening in emotional avoidance, detachment, or meaninglessness. The latter topic came … Continue Reading…

More on Stages of Witnessing

There are many nuances in the approach to awakening and in awakening itself. Self Realization is a watershed moment in the history of our soul. A new birth into a new way of being.

I’ve written many articles on the approach including Gradations of Awakening, What is Witnessing?, and The Stages of Witnessing.

In the later article, I talked about non-abiding witnessing, abiding witnessing and actual Self Realization as 3 possible stages in the approach to awakening. Recently, Lorne Hoff spoke of the steps in another way. I realized this added a fourth possibility.

1) The … Continue Reading…

Further Stages?

This post is more speculative as it’s something newly unfolding that is incomplete and I don’t know of other references yet.

As a being, we experience life from here. Our point from which we view the world is stable. Even if we “astral travel” or move within dreams or consciousness or become infinite, we still come back to this point, these senses in this body. We could say our experience is tethered here.

From a perspective of universal consciousness, Self is aware of itself both globally and at every point within itself. When we’re awake, we … Continue Reading…


Shankara was a well know revivalist who brought Vedanta back to the fore and reestablished a monastic tradition in India. But then the pendulum continued to swing and it came to be understood that withdrawal from the world was necessary for real spiritual progress. Renunciation became the way, partly because of the dark age.

To put this in a larger context, in Vedic philosophy of dharma, our lifespan is divided into 4 sections:
Study, Work and Family (Householder), Retirement, and Sannyasa.

In the last, Sannyasa, we retire from the world and focus on spiritual life- around … Continue Reading…

A Natural Pulsation

Recently, I’ve been corresponding with Jerry Freeman, another BATGAP interviewee. He sent me a few of his essays. I’ve quite enjoyed them and asked if I could share this one – There is a natural pulsation. (PDF 180k)

The article explores the natural ebb and flow of all things and an approach to bring to that.

He then explores the 2 aspects of ego:
– Ahamkara or I sense that is required to be a human
– Asmita is the overlay of conditioning that shadows the ego. What I refer to as our stories … Continue Reading…

Householder or Monk

I’ve written before about the distinction between Householders and Monks, but there’s a few ways of looking at this.

Classically there is the distinction in path. The way to God or source through acting in the world or withdrawing from the world. For the last over 1,000 years, the monk’s path has been more dominant in both the west and east.

This was due to the lowest part of the cycle of world consciousness. In the depths of the dark ages, it was typically necessary to withdraw from the mud of the world to make any spiritual progress. Thus, … Continue Reading…

The Flavours

I meet with, retreat with, and correspond with a variety of people who are awake, some very much so. As I mentioned in the Sophia panel discussion, I’ve found people tend to become more unique and distinctive with the falling away of personal identity. Even the person becomes unbound.

What this means is a huge variety in the “flavour” of unfolding. Some find their outer life changes little. They continue in the same scenario but are with it differently. Nothing changes but everything changes.

For others, the outer life may change distinctly. They may be led into a different … Continue Reading…

On Knowing

Due to the BATGAP interview and SAND talk, this blog is attracting many new readers. Some are coming in search of concepts that can help them make a better story about enlightenment. This is natural for the mind to want to do, but we have to be a little careful not to buy into this too much.

As I mentioned in the opening of my SAND talk, the point of my work is to support those on the journey, offer a framework for research and place various teachings and texts into some relative context. If you instead use … Continue Reading…

The Value of a Story

We might rightfully ask – What is the value of telling an awakening story? It is after all just a story. As I was reminded recently, “Those who know do not say, those who say do not know.” (Lao Tzu) Or there’s the similar Yogananda quote that anyone who says “I am enlightened” isn’t. I’ve gotten that one too.

The above quotes become easy ways to dismiss anything you disagree with or want to put down. And indeed, if the story is being used to prove a personal awakening, it should be considered highly suspect. It’s not the me … Continue Reading…

The Third Aspect

I’ve spoken a fair bit about the dynamics of consciousness and the Shiva and Shakti or male and female aspects of unfolding enlightenment.

But as I’ve also frequently described, self-aware consciousness has 3 aspects – the observer, the process of observation and the object. There is a third aspect. From a somewhat Christian perspective, we might say father, mother, and child. R. Buckminster Fuller spoke of action, reaction, and resultant.

The third aspect here is the effect or consequence. The consequence of the interaction of Shiva and Shakti is creation. … Continue Reading…