Rodney: It's very nice to hear from you. And thanks for the kind words. I, of course, can completely empathize with you on those years of seeking.
Q: After reading your fine pointers again and again, I am still unable to catch the Nondual Awareness that you are pointing to. It's an extremely frustrating experience for me, like a dog chasing its tail. Why have I been unable to recognise that permanent spaciousness within me?
Rodney: You are trying too hard. Such strenuous efforts only lead to greater frustration, more anxiety, and incorrect assumptions. The bare truth of the matter is that you are already that nondual spaciousness that you are seeking. Just keeping that marvelous little fact in the back of your head will help you to relax and to be open to an entirely different approach to all this. And by "different approach," I simply mean a fresh seeing.
Q: Yes, a fresh seeing. That's definitely needed. More than anything, I want to recognise this infinite nature that you and all the sages have beautifully described. Doubts continue to arise, and as you say, they just lead to anxiousness and frustration.But I want this Final Truth more than anything.
Rodney: Your wanting a clear understanding of your natural state (rather than just conceptual discussions about it) is to be commended. Notable too is your earnestness, which Nisargadatta said is the foremost quality that any seeker can have. For someone such as yourself, just a little clarification tends to go a long way. So forget whatever doubts arise. They are just thoughts that are suggesting that you are not what you presently are: Awareness itself. And nothing could be further from the truth. All thoughts, feelings, and ideas can only be known by and in this pure and radiant spaciousness. You are merely overlooking it. So given that you are already That, the first order of business is to relax. For dismay and anxiousness will only muddle things up.
Q: Yes, I see how important it is not to stress about all this. But I want more than anything to experience this ultimate Truth, but the ego--
Rodney: --is just another thought. Don't give it any unnecessary importance; for it's basically a notion or idea that pops up and then disappears. It is only because that particular thought is remembered that you assume that there is a continuity there, an "I" or "me" or person that is ever-present. But we have already shown that that is definitely not the case. Thus, there is nothing actually impeding you from cognitizing your pristine Beingness, except the attention you give to that thought which is saying that presence isn't fully before you at this very moment...And know, too, that your natural state cannot be experienced. It can only be lived, understood, and reveled in. It is unchanging, and beyond all space and time. And its peace is without parallel. Yet, even those words are a woeful approximation of its beauty and clarity.
Q: Excellent points. Thank you....And I am trying not to turn my seeking into some kind of goal, like achieving "Bliss" or ''Enlightenment'' or some ''super" state of consciousness. I know you have spoken a lot about this.
Rodney: Yes, and all of the things you mentioned can indeed be goals because they are experiences. They are not awareness proper, which is only recognized or understood in the absence of an imagined "I" or "me." And remember, it's not a matter of attempting to make the "I" absent. That's the "I" in operation again! But that is not the case when you simply see or recognize that this imagined "me" is not continually present--but that awareness is.
Q: And in my mind, immediately up pops "How is it done"?
Rodney: The seeing or the understanding is the "doing." There is no "how" other than that. Indeed, the "how" is just another thought raised by the mind. But when no thought is present, what is present?....See that there is an undeniable pause there. At first glance, the pause seems quite ordinary. But if you bring your full attention to it, freshly and without stress, you may find that that pause isn't ordinary at all. But rather, it is eternal, omnipresent, and ever-peaceful. Again, don't make it a chore or an effort. Just keep coming back to those potent moments as they naturally occur throughout the day and evening. Then you will see that you never ever move from your self-shining essence. And what could be more precious than that?
Q: Thank you, Rodney, I am simply amazed how easily you unfold all of the nondual essentials. I really like your straight, graceful, and transparent style of writing and teaching. Please accept my love and blessings for your unselfish service.
Rodney: You're most welcome, my friend.
The interview that I recently did for the new online publication, Nonduality Magazine, can be found at the following link: http://www.nondualitymagazine.org/nonduality_magazine_volume_1.contents.htm
If the link isn't highlighted (or is highlighted but won't open), simply copy and paste it into your Subject line, and click.