Question: Hi, Rodney. I trust all is well with you. In Los Angeles this morning, it is warm, cloudy, and drizzling. It feels wonderful. In fact, it's perfect!
Rodney: Thanks for taking the time to say hello. I've never been to California, but it's certainly on my list of places that I would like to visit.
Q: I enjoy walking the mile or two for coffee in my not-quite-suburban-not-quite-rural edge of the city. The rhythm of one step in front of the other in the quiet morning allows a parade of thoughts and perceptions to stride by with equal ease.
Rodney: That seeing of thoughts and perceptions "with equal measure" is very good. It isn't something that you are trying to do. You are simply taking note of what is happening. You're the witness without attempting to be the witness. It sounds as if you're really starting to see how awareness "presents" itself. I use the quotations because awareness doesn't act, really. It is simply ever-present. Your recognition of it appears to come from you because, as a sentient being, you have the ability to know not only that you exist, but that you exist--fundamentally--as awareness itself, and not just as a body and a mind.
Q: That is evident right now. Here I am, the individual moving through a scene; yet, the whole scene is also within me. Then, there is the true me--the stillness that encompasses the whole scene, with the perception of time ticking with each step within this eternity of now.
Rodney: Right, the stillness is the seer. The witnessing is coming from that. You are the spaciousness in which all of those things are occurring. There isn't this defined "I" within you that is continually doing the seeing, the knowing. The "I" is occasional, so it can't possibly be the knower. The knower has to be something that never changes. So just bring your attention to your ordinary, everyday awareness. See the peace and spaciousness with which it is magnificently imbued. Don't be overly-concerned about the witnessing. It will take care of itself, as it has always done! Just remain with the fundamental issue: What is it about yourself, right at this moment, that never moves from what it is? That is the question to deliberate upon, to be totally paused by.
Q: Exactly. You once told me that "whatever makes you stop" is all it takes. I am fully witnessing that thought right now, as I am filled with gratitude by my noticing what is always here--this non-dual reality. Thank you for offering me those words. They make all of this so clear and easy.
Rodney: You're most welcome. Your own beginningless Self is right there, right now. Whatever you are doing, you are looking at and through it at this very moment. It never moves from being fully available, and its recognition is just a matter of noticing that during a pause in thinking or feeling, there is an immeasurable presence of awareness that has always been there. We are merely distracted by a rising thought or emotion. But the truth of the matter is, we never move from this. We absolutely never do.
Q: I really love your blog, Rodney. Feel free to share our exchange, if you think it would be of any help or of interest to others.
Rodney: I'm sure it would, and thank you--on both counts!
News & Info
"A Vastness All Around is, hands down, one of the best books out there on nonduality. Thank you for all of your writing." --Alex Taylor
"Loved the book, Rodney. Enjoyed it as much as John Wheeler's first book, Awakening to the Natural State. My favourite quote of yours was "you are no more your personal history than you are your toothbrush." I like the fact that you included little tidbits of your life and surrounds. It felt more like reading a book on travel or history than some of the other textbook style books on nonduality. I think for anyone serious about a direct approach, your book and John Wheeler's are the two to have." -- Ian
A Vastness All Around: Awakening to Your Natural State is Rodney's first collection of essays, discussions, interviews, and powerful pointers. It can be ordered directly from the publisher at Lulu Press.
Vastness is now available for the Amazon Kindle! Order Here.
And for the book's Press Release, click Here.
If you would like to meet Rodney, have him to discuss nonduality, sign books, or read, you can email him at: firstname.lastname@example.org Such events are self-organized, so funding is key, with groups and universities that can cover travel expenses getting priority. And much appreciation!
John Wheeler's site is no longer up. But earnest and serious seekers can reach him at: email@example.com
This blog is generally updated every Sunday afternoon, Eastern Standard Time.