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Gratitude for Non-Dual Vision
Ben: Hello, Sundari.
Always, I am so much appreciate your thoughtful and considerate responds to my questions. May your kindness be mine.
Regarding my first question, your response helped. Rereading the paragraph, it does say that “a knower plus objects is a sentient being” and, as you point out, “the Self is not sentient as the jiva knows sentience, because it is that which makes sentience possible.” Thanks.
Sundari: A subtle and very important piece of the puzzle to assimilate for non-dual vision to become permanent.
Ben: Regarding my second question on page 64, second paragraph, your response totally clears the confusion. You said, “The sentence would be easier to understand if it said: ‘When the body-mind (small self) and the CONCEPT of the Self are understood to be mithya, apparently real.” I totally get that.
Sundari: Yes, I passed that onto James, and he agrees that the inclusion of the word “concept” makes the meaning of the sentence much clearer.
Ben: You wrote: “The Self implies not-Self. When you know you are the Self, there is no satya and mithya for you anymore, they are just concepts/principles used to teach you that you are the Self and can be discarded once the knowledge is firm. Mithya ‘becomes’ satya because it was satya all along. You see everything as just IS-NESS, a direct experience of existence as your identity, the Self.”
I see this as a very subtle understanding, but one that has recently occasionally crept into my reflections on the teachings.
Sundari: If the knowledge is assimilating and non-dual vision is establishing itself as spontaneous and automatic, this process happens naturally. You can’t “make” it happen.
Ben: Finally, thank you for sharing your thoughts regarding my question as to why jiva Ben was taking a grief workshop. I have asked myself why I signed up because I am mindful of those “do-gooders.” Your advice to remember to be present as the Self, loving compassion and attention is wise council. Your description of do-gooders as conversational narcissists is a blunt caution for me, and to hold the grief in a safe space, don’t try to fix it or change it; all good reminders, thanks.
I continue to benefit from the teachings and feel so much gratitude.
Sundari: I am so glad that helped you, Ben. As well-meant as “doing good” is for most people, and it is true that helping those in need wisely, by holding them in the silence of the Self, doing what needs to be done with karma yoga, does help. But helping can be a big trap for egos seeking validation.
As inquirers, the “big” emotions like grief are as tough to manage as the daily onslaught of “small” rajasic/tamasic mundane thoughts, maybe more so. It is not like one is supposed to become insensitive or callous towards suffering with non-dual vision. It just gives you true compassion, not idiot compassion, as James calls it [a term coined by Chögyam Trungpa]. Imagine how hard it is for samsaris totally caught up in believing that loss is real. My heart goes out to them, but I cannot get sucked into it as the Self, because I know it to not be real, that nobody dies or loses anything.
~ Much love, Sundari