Welcome: An Introduction

Sharing the insights I discover as I explore and experience the mystery that is our reality. Join me in my journey and share yours.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Tasting Infinity: Concluding Reflections on Nonduality

                                         Picture taken on a hike with my family the first day of Spring.

It seems like ages since I published my last post, "Disidentification Meditation",  sharing  a meditation that I've found helpful practicing and that aids me in realizing the nondual state. That was a follow up post from, "Knowing Nonduality", an article that explored the nature of nonduality and how it is a state that is more fully understood by direct experience rather than though means of the intellect.  In that post I was going to include my own personal reflections of the nondual that have come from entering into glimpses of that state. Since, however,  I was including a rather lengthy quote from Ken Wilber in which he described his thoughts on the nondual I felt including mine would be over doing it a bit and that it would be best if I left my own reflections for a future post.

Life has kept my blog from being as active as I would like it to be lately. As I find myself with some extra time this morning I'd like to post what I had written when reflecting on my own limited experiences of the nondual.

If you've had experiences of realizing the nondual state while meditating or any other experiences or insights  during moments of mindfulness/meditation I'd love to hear about them in the comments section.

When an awareness of the reality that defines All that exists breaks upon my consciousness  I suddenly realize that what was so hard to grasp is really so simple to understand when experienced. A sense of joy and even humor rises up in my awareness, sometimes causing spontaneous laughter at the irony and simple beauty of it all.

The nondual state is less of an experience and more of a reality to be aware of. So obvious. So Simple. So transforming. It becomes so clear that it's the "grasping" that is what hinders us and keeps us back from reaching the summit of our exploration through our consciousness. I am still nowhere near the summit but I've been looking upwards and through the clouds far above me I feel as if I have caught glimpses of its peak. Really the journey never does end. At least not in this lifetime. That's alright though, because when it comes down to it, mountain, sky and I, we are all one anyways. Those of us that are on this journey are on it not for the destination but for the sake of the journey itself.

When I let go and relax and merely be, it's as if the Self rises like a phoenix in my awareness, becoming my awareness,  scattering the ashes of the ego. The ego is still present but in a peculiar way. No longer subject but object to be observed. No longer driving my thoughts and desires. I realize then, not just conceptually but experientially, that I am truly not my thoughts and desires. That I am one with all that surrounds me. I feel unbelievably free as I shed the baggage of self. When it comes down to bare reality I have the deep sense that we are all interconnected. In one inhalation it's as if I can taste infinity. It's an ecstasy and relief of sorts to experience. I feel as if I am beginning to truly understand now what the sages and mystics of old speak about when they say that the end of the ego is the end of suffering. 
We can hear these experiences be told by others and only offer up our own feelings of perplexity at their words in response if we, too, haven't shared in realizing such a state. Hearing and reading others speak of the nondual used to both intrigue and confuse me. Now I feel as if I've stepped into the water itself and have begun flowing with the currents, no longer resisting, just simply Being.  Extending my sense of self outwards to no longer be defined by that which is contained within the barrier of bone and flesh. It is with the act of abandoning myself to the flow and becoming one with it that a new awareness and understanding rises up before me. It doesn't last long, not nearly long enough. But the glimpses I've had let me know what is possible and what truly Is when one untethers the cord that anchors one to self and is able then to drift into the naked reality of Self.

Thoughts? I'd love to hear them! Please leave them in the comments section!


  1. Jessica, thank you for sharing your experiences with non-duality. I have had similar experiences, although fleeting, but nonetheless powerful. The falling away of the ego, the epiphany that I am not my thoughts, and then the sudden oneness with everything. It's such a relief to know that I am not my thoughts and desires and that there is a higher plain of being where I can visit and be refreshed and strengthened. These moments are much too short but the memory of them encourages me. I probably should meditate more.... Lazy flesh;)

    1. I always regret not having a more regular meditation practice. I think with time it will be easier for me. I tend to have kids coming in at inopportune moments! :) Thank you so much Leah for sharing your experience. It is a refreshing and strengthening state to experience indeed. And I really am encouraged when I find others who can relate to my experiences.

  2. Jessica, you describe the experience perfectly here. Like Leah, I have had those fleeting moments of awareness that I am one with all and all is one with me. Wow! These are so, so amazing realizations. And, I, too, found it a place of unspeakable joy.
    Now, you've inspired me to spend regular time in meditation.
    Blessings to you!

    1. Thank you Martha for your encouraging comment. It's a beautiful thing when so many can relate to an experience. I'm glad that you have decided to begin to meditate more regularly. That's something I am working on myself. :)

  3. Jessica, you have given my experiences a name. I could never have describe it the way you have but your expressing your as if I was there, has made me realize that this is where I go when I am off in the mountains and on the beach. Even if others are along, I am very alone, I wonder off into a realm of what I called dreams. They are not! Thank you!

    1. I am so glad you found this post helpful Jan! Yes, the nondual experience can especially be felt and arise during moments in nature. Thank you so much for sharing. :)

  4. The very opposite of Rene Descartes’ 'I think therefore I am.'

    Simplified to the lowest terms, it should just be ‘I am.’

    God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”

    Just ‘I am.’

  5. Just reading your description of it brings me back to that indescribable feeling of bliss. I believe this is similar to our sense of awe whenever we gaze at something really beautiful. It's when we get out of ourselves and hence, we go beyond the duality of even our human nature. We become one with that beauty, that purity, as though we are in ecstatic prayer, as though we are gazing at God Himself!

    1. Simply beautiful reflections and so true. Thank you Joyce. :)

  6. Jessica, I do not 'meditate' per say, in the formal way. My meditation is more of just time of reflection. I believe I still have a very long journey to venture on and each day is filled with new experiences and learning. I enjoyed reading your experience. You have such a way with describing what you are trying to get across that I almost feel as though I am experiencing it myself :)

  7. Thank you Mary for sharing...I'm glad you enjoyed the post. :) I love your perspective on how you great each day with expectation for growth and new experiences.

  8. Hi Jessica, I find it very difficult to meditate. I know it is something that you really have to focus on but my mind wanders so quickly. I tried meditating at the ocean but it didn`t last very long. I really admire people who can do that! Thank you for sharing your experience with us! I love reading your posts!

  9. Nelieta...meditation is something that is a practice...and it's called that for a reason! It definitely requires practice...So don't be dissuaded if your first efforts seem not to have been successful. Sometimes it seems I can easily slip into another state of consciousness, becoming mindful and aware with no problem, other times it seems like by the time I still my mind my meditation session is nearly over!

    What I have found helpful is to try to be as mindful during the day (aware of everything in the present moment) as I can...When I first started I would just choose a couple of specific activities..like washing the dishes, or taking my dogs out in the morning. Where I would concentrate on my breath and just focus on becoming aware of all that arouse. To me that lead to other moments of mindfulness and helped me develop a habit of being centered more and definitely aided me in my meditation sessions.

    Thanks for stopping by! :)

  10. I had glimpses of this awareness but have not fully entered into the soul's 'quiet'.

    I've had heard of stories of people who had and somehow I know God will lead me there when I'm ready to open up myself entirely to His graces.

    I love the title of your post, Tasting Infinity. How I long my soul thirsts for that.

    I embark in this journey towards the center again and again, practicing the different techniques you introduce (except yoga I think).

    I guess your constancy has led you to that water you were describing... when you feel yourself totally immersed in His presence.

    Thank you for sharing this Jessica. I could feel its effects in you.

  11. Thanks for stopping by Melissa. [:)] You have such a beautiful heart I have no doubt that you will enter the waters of such a blessed state. My experiences have been fleeting...it's as if the door has been opened part-way and the love and light of the Lord has shone through in all its glory. I wouldn't say I have opened and walked through it entirely yet though. ...This is something that takes practice, dedication, devotion and God's grace to enter into. No doubt you have all of those...so take heart, it's all in His timing. [:)] ~ blessings

  12. I believe over the years at times I've overly complicated meditating... relax the body calm the mind! The more spiritually fit the more I'm aware of what I need to do to take care of myself. The key is action... not perfection!

    I read in one of your comments that you focused on breathing while washing the dishes... I do that too! It is the reason I hand wash, instead of using the dishwasher.

    Thank you for sharing...

  13. Hi, Jessica! ~

    I enjoy watching your journey of spiritual unfoldment -- Thank you for sharing!

    I'm intrigued by the notion: "the end of the ego is the end of suffering." I'm not aware of an "end" of the ego. In my daily practice I often take time to consciously set my ego aside. It is an ongoing practice, at least for me and others I'm aware of....

  14. May I suggest reading Carl Jung? All things are taken from previous works and are used to elevate those writing it. I feel that you can read all the literary works of all the great thinkers, meditators and such but really it comes down to one thing... YOU! Yes we can learn the way from all the greats and the latests fads but they all teach the same thing even though they are worded differently.

    It comes down to each of our Values and what we hold the most dearest to ourselves (Ourselves meaning, as an individual, meaning our Ego) You can meditate all you like but when it concerns someone within the scope of your ego you will revert to being the person you were before. You cannot blank out the rest of the world by saying "I have found my inner peace because the world won't let you!

    Take in what you learn but don't let it rule YOU! Each little bit helps just not one doctrine. :)

    Just my ramblings as it is my birthday and so I can lol

    Love Ya Jess