WHAT ARE WE AT OUR CORE?
When you strip away everything external to the essential core truth of who we are – thoughts, feelings, our body – what remains? Prior to everything – even energy – a core desire motivates things into existence. If we examine the nature of that core desire itself, behind the scenes of life and animating everything into being, we find that this desire is a desire to receive.
In other words, right now we are dependent upon the energy of existence to sustain us. Our body craves and needs air, water and food, our emotions need and crave stimulus, and our thoughts crave and desire impulse, something to stir against. If we look at what we would call our soul, our awareness itself, although we cannot say it depends upon anything for its existence, how it is operating – through consciousness of self-perception – it very much needs and craves this fundamental desire to be, to exist. Without this desire present, our existence itself would extinguish.
Desire is necessary, and desire is a most important component to existence. Desire itself is not ‘wrong’ or ‘right’; it is neither ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘here’ or ‘there’, but is central to all aspects of life. However, as we exist in this world, our core desire to receive from existence is wrapped up in a self-centered mode of being. I care not for the desires or well-being of my neighbor, what I want is to be fed, to be taken care of, to have power, sex, money, influence, etc. all for myself.
However, the way desire functions to attract the energies of life – the thing desired – is that this desire is only capable of filling the boundary of one’s current perception. If I am focused only on receiving for myself, for this tiny vessel, then that small vessel is all that will receive pleasure and that is all I will experience.
Furthermore, since the nature of the desire is self-centered, and the basic energy of life is fundamentally all-pervading and all-inclusive, they are at odds with one another, and as soon as the energy we experience as pleasure is attracted, once it enters us and we experience it, it is repelled, by the very nature of how our desire is pointed. For example, we can’t just have one potato chip, we want more. We can’t just have one sip of coffee, we need the whole cup. We can’t just have sex once and have it satisfy us ultimately, we need it time and time again.
Why is that? Why can the pleasure not sustain us; why does it flee as soon as we have a taste of it? Because instead of creating a circuit with the energy, we are completely opposite to its nature, so like magnets’ opposing ends, they repel. We may attract the energy to us through our desire, but once it enters the vessel of our experience, they don’t mix, and the pleasure is expelled.
But as we exist, we exist as desires to receive for ourselves. And we are wholly incapable of changing that desire by and in ourselves; since all we are is a desire for selfish reception, with what tools would you use to cause a change to occur? In fact, beyond all that we currently know to be ourselves, deep within the core of our Essential Nature, exists all the properties exactly similar to the energy itself. Since this energy we desire is all-inclusive, it cannot be the case that it doesn’t exist within us. However, our conscious awareness is completely oblivious to this fact, and it is from this current state of consciousness that we must operate.
Thus, we have a problem. On the one hand, I desire selfishly (Above, Klipot), and that is my nature from what I’m aware of, and that makes me completely opposite to the energy – pleasure – that I desire. On the other hand, I know that the energy I desire must be all-present and that it must already be filling me infinitely and I must be therefore completely similar to it, but I don’t experience this and am completely unaware of it. How can I resolve this contradiction within myself?
I must realize the current state from which I operate and its opposite nature to the state I would like to be in. I must also realize that I can do nothing with my current desires for myself to bring about the necessary changes to my inner properties. But if I am fully aware of my current state and what it means for me, creating a desperate state of affairs for me, there is something I can use my desire for: the desire to change.
This intention is for myself, but it is also larger than myself, since if I do change my properties, it benefits all of existence, actually. If I do not have this desire to change, what I can desire instead is the intention for the desire to change. In other words, if I have the burning desire to change my inner properties, that is already the right intention. However, if I don’t have that, I can at least ‘want’ to want to change. I can crave the intention to change itself.
The desire has to burn within us intensely to change. It must become stronger than all of our desires for this world and develop into a single-pointed focus, like a burning and desperate need for an antidote to a deadly poison.
Then, if we hold that state, this desire alone attracts a permanent change to our inward attributes. We will find ourselves merging with the thing desired, an intended change in our selfish desire to a more expanded view. This expanding of one’s vessel to include a larger view also expands ego, but our egoic nature expanding beyond the false self changes its properties fundamentally.
Now, I have ego for the sake of others; now, instead of desiring only for myself, natural desires for my fellows arise. Stranger or familiar makes no difference; the judging mind has been ‘hacked’ so that the discrimination and perceived differences cease.
This change is not intellectual or purely mental, but occurs within our innate sensation of ourselves and the energy around us; if my vessel expands, I not only feel myself, but others around me, their desires, their energy, etc.; how could it not be a natural result that I should desire their happiness, as well?
However, this outcome is only a side-effect of the practice of right Intention; we must continue to build that connection within so that we may share that state with others. Turning back around to the world after receiving one droplet of the Infinite isn’t going to merit you anything; of course we should be loving, compassionate, caring and living harmoniously with other beings around us; that we did not before is an indication of a sickness that has been alleviated, and that we do now is not worth a pat on the back or meriting some gain or attainment when it should be our natural state of being.
What we should do with this increase in desire energy is continue to hold it one-pointedly back upon its source, desiring again and without ceasing to make changes to how we perceive our innermost nature to be. In truth, the only thing that changes is our perception, but this is deep and directly connected with how we experience reality and life itself; it is neither child’s play nor a trick of the mind, but real and fundamental change.
What’s actually occurring is that we’re revealing what has always been there, that fundamental current that’s been forgotten underneath the surface of all we’ve confused ourselves to be in this limiting idea of a small and confined, selfish needing vessel.
Once the first taste of something larger and greater than our current view of life and ourselves has been experienced, there is no stopping one from chasing after that connection. However, in our sleepy and confused state, we may take peace for being the ultimate; a quiet mind is only the foundation and the beginning of the changes to one’s fundamental nature. It is neither the end nor the middle of the path, but the first baby-step into a reality larger than one’s self.
So burn the desire intensely within you to reveal what’s been hidden; reach beyond the self known and demand ceaselessly and with fervor that you may change your inner state. If you do not have the desire, if you feel dry, cry out instead for that desire against the entropy of the stony heart, and it will come. If you do not feel the need, if you think the world as it is to you now holds some answers, then you need this change more than ever. However, go back to the world and outward seeking to try and fulfill the small vessel of selfish needing.
When you’ve exhausted yourself without fulfillment and still don’t have the zest of life or whatever it is you are seeking – which is really all just desire, used in the wrong way – then you may want to reevaluate your approach and try pointing your desire differently, towards the hidden and the unseen, rather than the revealed and what is seen.
There is no coercion here – you either want it, or don’t. If you don’t want it, you can want the desire for it, move against the trappings of the outward-seeking mind and develop the view of the inner desire. There is nothing else for us here in this world; everything is fundamentally empty and devoid of real meaning when we take it for ourselves. The real meaning is made by the courageous and the daring, those who are willing to give up even themselves in order to gain nothing. This nothing is not empty, but contains all of existence and life itself. Do not look to the mind to make sense of life; when has it led you to lasting fulfillment? Thus it has been said by countless sages throughout time immemorial ::
“Seek not that which is seen, but that which is unseen, for that which is seen is temporal, but that which is unseen is eternal.”
“Those who seek to gain their life shall surely lose it, but those who are willing to lose their life will gain it.”
Selfish seeking seeks only the self; what could be added to it? Seeking beyond the self, which is to say within, where we falsely believe nothing exists, brings about the miraculous result of something seemingly born from nothing; i.e. a fundamental change in ourselves, in our desires.
“If you know how to turn the light of awareness around to look within, using the artificial to cultivate the real, then in a moment yin and yang will merge and combine, spontaneously and effortlessly. If you realize this, it is near at hand, if not it is far away. It is simply a matter of being willing to do it.”
The artificial is our identified state to a selfish desire, our only tool we’re capable of working from at the beginning. But graciously, it’s enough to point that correctly in order to bring about change. The Real is the View beyond positive and negative, increase or decrease, a View wholly beyond the way our minds usually function with discriminations and judgments that tell us absolutely nothing about the actual nature of reality.
Yin and yang are the active and passive principles of energy; selfish desire keeps them separated, as discussed above in different words, bringing about worry, disease, and eventually death. Creating the appropriate state within for their commingling through a correctly pointed desire is the whole work in this life.
“The heart of heaven and earth is the basis of ongoing growth; those who attain this heart become sages, buddhas, immortals; those who lose this heart become animals, ghosts, demons. Whether one has this heart or lacks this heart is all a matter of whether yin and yang are separated or united. If learners can blend yin and yang without partiality or bias, ending up in correct balance, then the heart of heaven and earth will reappear. When the heart of heaven appears, whatever is at hand is the Tao, wherever one walks is reality; the mainspring of Creation is in one’s own grip.”
Take these words to heart and you will not be capable of failure. To read without absorbing the content will continue a sad state of affairs. Where is this world at, with all its inhabitants selfishly looking outwardly? Few have even enough for themselves, and no one is satisfied.
But if we can learn how to adopt changes to our nature through right intention, we can learn how to receive more than our share and enjoy sharing it with others, enjoy their joy, bring about a state of abundance, and cultivate that desire towards even more inward growth towards bliss. This is the transmutation of Hell into Heaven, performed on Earth, so that we may enter a state vastly beyond all three.
I wish you all immeasurable joy my brothers and sisters, success in your journey through life, and realization of your True and Essential Nature, that no life be a wasted result of simply seeking in the wrong direction. There is help, there is hope, there is calm abiding in Eternal Truth which is our Original Estate in the perfection of Ineffable Being.
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