Received a newsletter today from Nirmala. It had excerpts from several recent eBooks that nicely touch on different stages in the awakening process.
On the approach to awakening:
“You may think it matters what happens. But what if the only thing that matters is where you are experiencing from, where you are looking from? What if you could experience all of life from a spacious, open perspective where anything can happen and there is room for all of it, where there is no need to pick and choose, to put up barriers or resist any of it, where nothing is a problem and everything just adds to the richness of life? What if this open, spacious perspective was the most natural and easy thing to do?”
— from The Heart’s Wisdom by Nirmala
After awakening, there is a movement into a second opening, the heart:
“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.”
— from Beyond No Self by Nirmala
And then, the third opening, also seen as the second awakening:
“In the midst of a very profound and large experience of truth, the sense of your self can become so large and inclusive that it no longer has much of a sense of being your Being. When you awaken to the oneness of all things, the sense of a me can thin out quite dramatically. If you are the couch you are sitting on and the clouds in the sky and everything else, then it simply doesn’t make sense to call it all me. If it’s so much more than what you usually take yourself to be, then the term me is just too small.
In a profound experience of truth, the sense of me softens and expands to such a degree that there’s only a slight sense of me as a separate self remaining, perhaps just as the observer of the vastness of truth. Beyond these profound experiences of the truth, is the truth itself. When you’re in touch with the ultimate truth and the most complete sense of Being, there’s nothing separate remaining to sense itself there’s no experience and no experiencer, no Heart, and no sense of self. There is only Being.”
— from Love for Giving by Nirmala
These are available free for download as ebooks from www.endless-satsang.com/Ebooks.htm