Imagine a state in which you feel oneness with the Universe, enjoying bliss and peace of mind, and at the same time acting and functioning normally in your day-to-day life. A state of being active in the world, yet maintaining a state of inner detachment.
In this state you are aware of your oneness with the One Spirit, and also aware that the One Spirit is acting and manifesting through everything; things, plants, trees, animals and people. This is the experience of nonduality in its highest condition.
Ordinarily, the veil of thoughts and the five senses draw the mind outside, to the external world, and obscure the awareness of the consciousness that is beyond the mind.
Meditation brings peace to the mind and develops the ability to silence it, thus enabling us to experience the "state" of nonduality. In this state of inner silence, one rises above the illusion of identification with the mind, thoughts and ego, gets beyond the illusion of separateness and realizes oneness with the One Spirit. It is as if a new sort of consciousness dawns, and one sees the world in a different way.
VIDEO: PART ONE
What does mean when we say "life is an illusion?"
No, it doesn't mean that it's all pointless at all.
From an ordinary point of view things seem very solid and real. However when you look closely you will see that things are conditioned and changing.
When we are in a good mood we see lots of good things. But somehow when we are in a bad mood we only see problems around us. In this way, the example of a dream or an illusion is used to show how the things we experience outside and inside aren't as independent and solid as we are used to thinking.
Appearances may not be reality, so don’t be fooled.
“Oh lord of my own ego, you are pure illusion. You do not exist.”
“To serve your ego is to worship a false identity created by yourself. It is like someone suffering from amnesia reinventing herself because she has forgotten who she is.” ~ The Tao is Tao, 80
The ego is similar to an imaginary friend or what some people may describe as a second self. We can compare it to a character we dress up, assign a personality to and role-play as. It allows us to externally appear however we want to, regardless of how we actually feel inside.
The ego is manipulative. It is a false portrayal of who we are and it allows us to create a reality that falsely determines our self-worth.
Some people tap in and out of their ego, while other people exist cocooned within it—with very little, if any, connection to their core self. The core self is the essence of our authentic natural state and it does not require any external validation. The self-image that we portray through our ego is usually an inflated, alternative version of our core self.
The ego is nourished and grows stronger from external connection and validation, our core self is nourished and grows stronger from internal connection and validation.
When our ego is dominant we will struggle to reach a place of inner peace and harmony as we are aiming for a version of personal success that is dependent upon external validation.
VIDEO: PART TWO
Using the illusion of an ego is a way of separating our core self from the identity we display to the world. We mistakenly trick ourselves into believing that our ego is our true identity to protect our core self. Egos avoid having to face the fear of exposing our core self, fear of connecting to people from the heart centre, fear of being vulnerable and fear of being criticised.
All things are predetermined by everything that has come before it.
Everything, even our thoughts themselves, are a cosmic convergence.
Do not be mistaken by the ego’s claim to be the creator of your thoughts. Thoughts are not ‘yours', you only perceive them. There is nothing ‘you’ have done to bring them (or anything else for that matter) into being. They are not your personal creation.
There is no thinker.
Now, isn’t that a fantastic and clarifying relief? Step back from what you perceive as being 'your own’. Yes, you are their only witness, but that changes nothing. Do you claim responsibility for growing the hair on top of your head? Do you claim ownership of each and every sneeze? Did you will each one into being? Of course not—thinking, and everything else our body does, is no different.
There is no doer, there is only things being done.
ALL events and appearances happen in accordance with the Universal Way, the Tao, the forever-flowing river of conscious continuity that we call life.
The entire universe conspires together to create each and every thought, not unlike the blooming of a cherry blossom on a tree, not unlike a drop of dew on a blade of freshly grown grass.