Dissolving duality to abide in totality

Dissolving duality to abide in totality

28 Dec 2019

"Oblation is effortlessly offered into the fire of Shiva's intensely flaming consciousness by offering fully all of the great seeds of internally and externally created duality" - Abhinavagupta

"In this rite, the sacrificial fire is the Great Void, the supreme reality entirely devoid of all division and beyond the emptiness of insentience. The sacrificial ladle is awareness and the offering is the entire outer universe of diversity, together with the inner world of mind and thought. All division between subject and object is burnt away and everything made one with the fire of consciousness" - Mark Dyczkowski, The Doctrine of Vibration

The cosmic sacrifice is the offering of the differentiated universe into the fire of consciousness, dissolving all forms and divisions into one taste (ekarasa). Non-dual philosophy is fascinating, in that it challenges us to question everything we ordinarily believe we know about the reality we find ourselves in. How does the limited, contracted sense of individuality ascend and expand towards the universal? It is not a process of acquiring or adding more and more to our small container to produce a sense of fullness, but rather the releasing of all sense of limitation and difference that creates this experiential quality of feeling separate from the whole. This is not just some intellectual speculation but a careful evaluation of what it means to be an individual and the living with that expanded understanding as the corner stone of all our activity in life.

Our individuality is not something static nor something which we define for ourselves. It is a complex relationship which is formed out of every experience and every connection we establish throughout life. A teacher is only a teacher if there are individuals who choose to be students. Defining oneself as a teacher while having no students is nothing but a mirage. It is like this with every other aspect of our sense of individuality. We like to think that we choose who we are, that we are unique, special, superior (or inferior) because of qualities we consider to be innate. We are in fact, digest-ers of experience. Every experience we accept into our awareness shapes our expression in this life. Our individuality is like a whirlpool, which though it appears to have continuity, is never the same moment to moment.

In this way, recognizing the ephemeral nature of our presumed identity, we can see how we are in fact an expression, a wave, a whirling of the whole and that the sense of separation is merely a conceptual phantasm. A wave on the ocean, though appearing to have a distinct nature and existence of its own, independent of the ocean that surrounds it, is in fact an action which the ocean performs. Likewise, we are all but waves, ripples of the cosmic pulsation, moving through this great ocean of existence as unique expressions of the whole, while at the same time, being one with the totality.