Nirmala has released a new free eBook which is particularly good for understanding the process of first waking. It’s called Beyond no Self. In 10 Steps to Enlightenment, I mention the value of inquiry and housekeeping. Nirmala explores these in more detail, talking about the 2 streams – disengaging from identification with our thoughts and realization of your true nature within.
He talks about how without connection to source, disengaging from mind simply replaces the belief of self with the belief in non-self. Also how connection to source without disengaging mind leads to an incomplete realization.
“Even though [seeing through the mind] is a profound insight and a huge relief (after all if I am not my body, then these are not my aches and pains; and if I am not my mind, then these are not my problems), by itself this insight only reveals the false assumptions. It does not reveal the underlying truth. And since the underlying truth of your nature is more of a heart-centered experience, it is possible to dissolve the ego without touching your true nature. In a sense, you can wake up in your mind, but not in your heart.”
He touches on the “dry spell” that can sometimes occur around waking when the illusion is seen through and the former motivations fall away. Then he explores what happens next, when the deeper opening takes place and we move into fuller values of the experience.
“How can that be: empty space that is full of everything that matters? The mind cannot grasp it fully, as presence exists beyond concepts and even beyond its own forms; and yet, that is what you are. You can experience it with more subtle senses than the physical senses and the mind. Ultimately, you “sense” it by being it. You just are this full empty presence.
It is this second movement of realization of essence, presence, and fullness of Being that counteracts the belief that since I (as ego) do not exist, therefore nothing exists and all is illusion. It gives a heartfelt sense of meaning and purpose back to this relative life of the body and mind, not as a means of gratification to your idea of yourself, but as a pure expression of the wonder and beauty of this deeper reality. Instead of living a life in service to the ego’s wants and needs, you can find yourself fulfilling the deepest purposes of a human life: to serve and express freedom, joy, beauty, peace and love. By itself the realization of no-self can end up dry and lifeless, but when the heart opens wide to the bigger truth of the true Self, life is anything but dry and lifeless.”
The ebook is not long and worth the read.