I’ve got a funny image of the seeker,
going round and seeking like mad, and suddenly
stumbling across his own absence.
Yes, it’s the cosmic joke. And yet it
plays itself out perfectly. Oneness pretending
to be two, pretending to be separate, in order
to find itself. It’s a game. And to the
individual, it can all seem very heavy. The seeking
can get very heavy. There can be a real desperation
to it. “I’ve only got a limited amount
of time on this earth, and I need to awaken before
I die!” That can get very serious. But
the cosmic joke of all of this, is that the individual
already arises in the most perfect awakeness,
the most perfect presence. It’s all there
is. That’s why some teachers call awakening
the booby prize! You gain nothing, and lose everything,
but in that loss is a clarity and an effortlessness
that could never be reached by a person seeking
Q. Why is it that some apparent individuals
aren’t interested in reality?
Because this isn’t something that they
can have. The mind is only interested in something
it can have.
Q. But everyone you see, they all have
that reality. Some apparent people simply aren’t
interested. People we encountered coming here
on the train, for example.
On the train?
Q. Yes, on the train.
Oh you’ll find a lot of people on the
train who aren’t interested in this!
Q. It’s just that I am puzzled
as to why individuals aren’t interested
in their own reality.
Q. Maybe they
don’t need to be.
That’s it. They don’t need to be.
There’s nothing out of place. If they’re
not interested, they shouldn’t be.
Q. You mean it’s appropriate?
Absolutely. Otherwise this becomes a religion
Q. Right, right. And then this wouldn’t
be freedom, because they wouldn’t be
free to be what they are.
Exactly. This freedom allows that. It allows
everything. It allows …
Q. … disinterest?
Q. Because otherwise it becomes a religion
and it’s no longer free?
Q. But religions are okay as well.
And presumably lack of freedom is okay.
Q. Jeff, we’ve already said a
bit about spiritual practice. A lot of nonduality
writers and teachers these days…
Are you calling me a nonduality teacher?
Q. They say that spiritual practices
don’t serve any purpose because there’s
nobody there to do the practice. Would you
say that when the seeing through occurs, it’s
a matter of grace?
The moment we talk about “it” happening,
the mind latches onto that and wonders when this
grace will happen. It’s grace in the sense
that it’s free. It can’t be had.
It can’t be possessed. It’s already
screaming from the walls, from the ceiling, from
the chair, and the moment you want it you can’t
And in terms of spiritual practices, this is not about
giving them up. They fall away of their own accord.
Or this could be seen, and spiritual practices
could continue. But the seriousness goes
out of them. They regain their joyfulness. Everything
does. Because everything is allowed to be itself,
fully. So spiritual practices are allowed to
be spiritual practices, but there’s nobody
there anymore trying to get something
Q. Which presumably is why you find
some people who are self-realised continuing
their spiritual practices, and others who don’t?
Yes, but there’s no way of knowing what
will happen. It just unfolds of its own accord,
in its own time.
That’s how this message could be heard
though: that there’s nothing to get, so
you should give up. But that would be to miss
the point entirely.
Q. Yes, this has gone through my mind.
If there’s nothing to get, what should
I do? What is there to do? It seems like a
Yes. Some people refer to this as the “Traditional
Advaita” versus “Neo-Advaita” debate.
To practise or not to practise? To follow the
traditions or to leave them behind? If everything
is perfect, what is there to do, right? If this
is all there is, what use are spiritual practices?
But you see, those questions arise from a complete
misunderstanding of what the word “Advaita” points
It’s not that there is nothing
that you can do. And it’s not that
you should give up what you are doing, because
that’s also how this may be heard. The
point is, there is no “you” who can
choose either way.
In other words, it’s doing itself.
Already. So the reason I don’t give out
any spiritual practices is because I don’t
know. I don’t know what is best for
you. And anyway, you already have the practice
Q. It’s this.
It’s this. Oneness cannot be practised.
And when that is seen in clarity, the whole thing
falls away. And you could call that “awakening” if
you wanted to.
So that’s why I don’t give out
particular practices, and not for any other reason.
And that’s also why I would never tell
anyone to stop practising, as if they had a choice.
What happened over here is that the practices
fell away when it was seen that there was nobody
there practising. I would sit for hours and meditate,
and there would be a constant question: “who
the hell is doing this?” And during the
self-enquiry, the question was always “who
the hell is doing this?”. I never found
anyone there doing any of those things. Perhaps
that is where all these practices lead to in
And so the practices just fall away of their
own accord. Or not, actually. There’s no
prescription here. There’s no way of knowing what
will happen when this is seen. And really, this is
always the practice. Whatever you find yourself
doing, is always the practice that you need in
You see, it’s always already doing itself.
It’s already practising through you. The
miracle is already happening. And the clear seeing
of that destroys the whole Traditional Advaita
versus Neo-Advaita debate, which is just another
intellectual game the mind plays to keep itself
alive. How the mind loves its intellectual games.
How the mind loves to be right. How the mind,
in its innocence, loves to cling to its traditions,
its religions, its beliefs, and criticise those
who don’t do the same.
You see, it’s already complete. And it’s
nothing like you ever thought it would be. Who
would have thought awakening would be this?
Who would have ever thought?
Q. Every time I hear that, the question
is: what’s the difference then,
I mean, if there’s nothing between you
and I? Teachers often say “I’m
the same as you”. So what’s the difference then?
That question has fallen away.
I never got an answer to that! There is no
This is absolute equality you see. There’s
just Oneness. And in that, different stories
arise. The Jeff story, the John story, the Mary
story. It’s Oneness playing. Playing the
role of different characters. We are beingplayed.
We are Being playing.
Part 1 is the introduction to the above
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