Phenomenology of the Natural Unfolding of Non-Duality 19 v2
Rudolph Bauer,Ph.D. Author, Erin Johannesen, M.A., M.D. Editor
As we know, many people are located in their minds. Their subjectivity, their awareness, is encapsulated as though in a box. They are born in a box, living in a box, and dying in a box. One can be boxed in, and yet within the box of the mind, much can happen. Actually, the box of the mind is powerful and beautiful. Nonetheless...it is a box.
The box of the mind has various functions that may be amplified. Some people live in only one function of the box, which can be a problem. They may be located only in the thinking function, or sensation function, or memory function, or even fantasy function…the ongoing erotic narrative. Some people are located only in the sea of affect, a waving life of ups and downs. So, in the mind, one can focus on experience and become absorbed in experiencing that is both pleasurable and painful.
An excellent hypnotherapist knows one can amplify any of these functions of the mind, and a dissociative experience emerges wherein one enters trance via that particular function. The trance state has many positive implications: Learning takes place in a trance. It also has unhappy implications: The power of trance may foreclose, or shut down…sometimes even forever…the next phase of the unfolding of conscious awareness.
The next phase of the unfolding of oneness, of direct perception, of gnosis, is becoming aware of the mind. In this phase, one steps beyond the mind and steps into awareness…of that very mind. Donald W. Winnicott [a pediatrician who became a renowned psychoanalyst and theorist] was a master of this understanding. One can enter an intermediate area of experience which is transitional; transitional as spaciousness and as relatedness…this is the beginning of…the opening of the non-conceptual dimension. It is the beginning of going beyond subject-object duality. It is the beginning of oneness that extends beyond the limited oneness contained by the mind’s functions. There is now an emphasis on place, or space, wherein the primordial self that appears is non-representational and non-narrative based…a self entirely non-narrative in nature. This space, called ‘transitional space’ by Winnicott, is the place where narrative can be inscribed, or held, but is not narrative itself.
Within Winnicott’s transitional space…within the basic space of awareness...there arises also the beginning of a field understanding of awareness and of relatedness experience. This area of experience lies in the intermediate space between thinking and affect, between memory and sensation, and between fantasy and reality. The capacity and skill in entering this intermediate space is both the base of awareness and the doorway to experiencing the ongoing continuity of the sense of beingness of one’s own being. So much more possibility becomes immediately available for people when the transitional space becomes apparent.
The next step in the unfolding of non-duality arises as one focuses on the opening of the field, within the intermediate space…for as one becomes aware of awareness…as one holds awareness…one enters awareness. The possibility arises then of becoming awareness itself…AH HAM AH…becoming what I am. In these moments, phenomena arise completely; one can begin to live in the field of awareness. One begins to integrate one’s own mind and body directly into the field. So much can happen with this great step: The metabolism of awareness is increasingly activated, and much of experience can be metabolized and dissolved…Actually, liberation is beginning…and the non-duality of the field is beginning to be felt. Much psychotherapy work can take place within the field…for the base of the self is expanded now to the base of the field [the individual now has the open, limitless field as one’s base rather than the narrower sense of narrative self as the base].
In time, but not a lot of time, the field opens more and more. The skill of extension becomes one’s own, and one can be in the oneness with another in the field…two awarenesses are better than one. Through extension, the perception of the field becomes vast and deep…the openness is beginning to become one’s own. One is becoming the field.
As you [an individual] become the field, the next great step emerges, and we [you and I together] are becoming awareness itself…the inner ying can truly meet the outer ying…from inside to inside. And so the kayas begin to reveal themselves to us, to manifest themselves in us as us, and we begin to live in the dimension of awareness…the non-duality of awareness. Experience becomes so explicitly clear as one single field of the manifestation of awareness within one’s experience of self and otherness. Divinity appears and begins to manifest experientially…nirmanakaya is the dimension of appearance, of luminous flesh…luminous earth. Direct perception is happening.
Arising also within experience is the apparitional dimension. It is so subtle and so archetypical. The archetypical is not a theoretical hypothesis, but the apparitional experience of energy, of power…of shakti…which is the very nature of one’s self and of everyone else. These energies, these elements, these vortexes [vortices] manifesting in some traditions are the deities, the goddesses…personification and symbol of the primordial powers of consciousness as field…the visionary dimension of the field…non-dualness of energy and light beyond personality. Direct perception is happening.
Nonetheless, the potential space in its infinite unformedness begins to be known directly. Direct perception, gnosis …is unborn, undying, primordial awareness…is pure potential, and can only be known as itself…as ourself [ourselves as one in the oneness of the field].
We speak of this process of arising awareness as the three Samadhis:
There is the Samadhi of suchness, which is space…the pure space of awareness.
We can speak also of the Samadhi of self arising awareness…of the spreading of awareness as radiance, as spacious radiance…as resonance, radiance and absorption…as EXTENSION, as guru yoga, as the resonance of oneness, as the extension of oneness, as the transmission of oneness, as the capacity to pass through, to soar, to be a sky-goer. …And ultimately, to emanate, to embody emanation, which is the body of light, the vajra vase body. Buddhahood is described in terms of the power of emanation. To be a Buddha is to experience emanation, the transmission of light. As Buddha realized more and more light, his emanations grew. In the text given by Sri Singha, the earliest of the Dzogchen masters, he describes both the quickness of realization and the powers of emanation as depictive of the various realizations of oneness of Buddhahood (p. 269).
And so, the Samadhi of self-arising awareness is also the Samadhi of transmission…of the light meeting the light. It is our being in extension, in full extension, in the full resonance of oneness, of passing through, and the full embodiment of emanations. Kurukulle is the goddess of extension. The five functions of the Dakini are pacification, amplification, magnetizing, summing, and dissolving. These functions are held within the power of awareness. A transmission contains these functions.
The third Samadhi is the Samadhi of syllables, of sacred syllables…first experienced as syllables of light and sound…only later experienced as the symbolic dimension…of letters and words. The seed syllables can be brought forth through resonance and extension…through the resonance of mantra and the extension of a mantra from one person to another. By mantra I mean awareness itself. This opening of language gives us the vajra voice that can transmit the body of light from one being to another through sounds and words…both audible and inaudible. The power of mantra is the power of resonance both vertically [within one’s body; connecting us to earth below and space above] and horizontally [connecting us to others, to all beings, across time…across circumstances]. The mantra is awareness itself. It is the body of light itself as it is both being brought forth and being transmitted to, as well as by, each other.
The world of awareness, which is the world of oneness, is completely relational…the cosmic human.