Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Pure Mind by Katie Davis, Author, "Awake Joy"

Questioner: What is "pure mind" and what is meant by "killing the mind"?

Katie: When you use the word "mind," where is that word pointing?

Questioner: Thoughts. Does it include feelings? Emotions? I don't know.

Contributor: It includes all, but the point is who's behind the mind? Killing the mind is simply to distance from it just as an observer.

Katie: When I use the word "mind" it points to thoughts and just as you say the mental-emotional aspect of the mind, mental images, physical energies and ever more subtle layers of the intellect. It includes both perception and cognition, understanding and the idea of selfhood, as well as the subject-witness.

Our primary concern is identification with thought and first and foremost, the "I" thought that is the body. This association is an illusion. Nothing wrong with the beautiful body of course, but when we limit ourselves to the body only as identity, we cannot be aware of the greater consciousness that we genuinely are.

The first step then is to observe thought which leads to "detachment" from thought. Instead of riding along on a train of thought, with detachment, thoughts float by like leaves in a river of consciousness, while we remain still. Thoughts are free and so is the one watching.

The mind is stilled, meaning there are not thoughts. Although, enlightenment is more than the blank mind state. We have shifted from the projecting power of mind to the resting power of mind successfully and that is beautiful ... yet not Self-realization.

When they speak of purifying the mind, they are speaking of tendencies or vasanas. The mind is a mirror that is covered with fog, much like the bathroom mirror after taking a shower. To clear the bathroom mirror, we merely open the door. To clear the mirror of the mind, we turn the mind within through Self-inquiry. Turned within, the mirror is cleared by the light of consciousness. It happens by itself.

When there are no more tendencies, we realize that there is no such thing as a separate mind. All is consciousness. So in fact, there is no 'mind' to kill. Anyway, the one that would try to kill the mind is the same mind. It just won't happen!

Even the separate sense of self, the ego-I, is merely an altered state of consciousness. So we hold onto it and focus all attention on the feeling of I-ness. This is the paradox. Even though it appears as a false I, we focus attention upon it.

Not awareness of I, which maintains duality, but rather Being I.

In attention, thought is stilled. It does not become the ego's story of "I am this" and "I am that." The altered states will burn away and the Pure I that you already are shines as the Heart.

Being I ... simply BE STILL ... as you are.

The effort in trying to still the 'mind' is only more agitation. It is the same divided 'mind' that it is trying to still itself. Mind cannot be 'fixed' at the level of the mind. Instead, we focus attention and realize the perfect peace that is beyond the mind ... that already is. In this, what never was dissolves.

Contributor: And purity is equanimity, equanimity to all that goes on mind. It's identification with likes and dislikes which causes the bondage and suffering.

Katie: Just as you say, when we observe thoughts, it does indeed 'distance' the observer, so that thoughts do not use us.

Thoughts are not really problematic. It is the identification where we 'lose' who we are.

I might point out that identification requires time.

So when we are solidly and consciously in the body (part of the content of the present moment), we are no longer lost in the head and less likely to attach to compulsive thinking.

That present moment is appearing within time. It is appearing within the formless NOW that is completely free of time, free of the content of the present moment and indeed already free of thought.

The body is a perfect tool for presence. Attend its breathing and the past and future fade away.

Time = mind = suffering. Remove time from the equation and the identification and suffering disappear.

Contributor: And it's so wonderful to be distanced from the thoughts and actions, a kind of kingly feeling. You know this very well, Katie!

Katie: Indeed, purity is equanimity and innocent stillness.

Free of identification with the ego-I, we are also free of all of its judgments that become likes and dislikes that separate us from the beauty of all experience and the stillness from which it arises ... all is whole and complete ... equanimity.

The tendency is to try to manipulate likes and dislikes. Or some will even work for years on judgment. Instead, what is prior to judgment? When the ego-I thought falls ... all judgments, concepts and beliefs fall along with it.

How could there ever be equanimity and peace with a separated I?

That one believes in separation and therefore only perceives separation.

"ME" against the world, for or against God; separate from everything.

How is it possible to be separate from something called the Totality?

No wonder that tiny thought feels alienated, lonely and fragmented. Separate from love, separate from happiness, separate from every person and thing. No wonder it is sad, fearful and angry!

Yet when we look for it ... it is nowhere to be found ... other than the thought of separation.

Instead of seeking enlightenment, seek the "I."

From whence does it arise?

You will find that it (YOU) are already shining as the Heart that is beyond all and All.

Nonetheless, don't toss that ego "I" out. Focus attention ... Being I.

All the altered states (tendencies/vasanas) burn away ... effortlessly so.

Such simplicity ... Be Still.

Being I.

People speak of how complex Self-realization is.

It is the MIND that is complex and the 'mind' is not.

Each time attention shifts to I am this or that ... and gets lost in the story, just stop.

No big deal. Be still, being I, during all that is being done.

False identification is false bondage and needless suffering.

Contributor: "It is the mind that is complex", "being I is so simple" This sums up your flowing explanation. Well, what you have written is so insightful and it is befitting to be posted on your blog for the benefit of all other friends. Thank you, K!

Katie: Being I is so simple ... So much love and thank you for the suggestion about the blog. There have been many fine and creative ideas offered today.

Some schools refer to the pure mind as nirvana blue or what I call the blue void. This is still an experience. 

Whereas enlightenment is no experience at all ... beyond the experience of no experience. You are prior to consciousness.

Nirvana is the realization of pure consciousness or full emptiness. It is the highest happiness that is transcendental bliss. 

Pure consciousness is the unconditioned 'mind' and its state is perfect lucidity and clarity. Ecstatic bliss is divine love ... deep, cool blue with extraordinary luminosity.

Whereas YOU, dear Heart Friend, are That which makes all possible. 

Not one word that I could say would be true. If you remember enlightenment, it is not enlightenment. No memory! I am beyond cognition, so I remain the Great Mystery. I only BE who I am.

Indeed, I am beyond all and All ... that is Self-realization; realizing who I am as the Totality.

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