When you rise above duality, you clearly see that there is something that is unreal. But that which is unreal is not in opposition to that which is real, as that which is humanly wrong is in opposition to that which is humanly right. That which is unreal is simply unreal. It is outside reality, separate from reality. But it is not and cannot be in opposition to reality. For that which is real can have no opposition. Nothing can threaten that which is real.
Thus, the first step on the path of higher awareness is to reach for something beyond duality. And that is what Jesus expressed so beautifully when he said, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his right-eousness.” Seek ye first the “right” of higher awareness. This is also what the Buddha expressed in the definition of the eightfold path. So many Buddhists have misinterpreted the eightfold path and believe that it can be defined in human terms: What is right livelihood, what is right action, what is right thought, what is right association and so on.
The true definition of the eightfold path is that you reach for the “right” of higher awareness that is beyond duality. But how can you reach for that right, that higher right? Well, you can do so only when you realize the noble truth that everything that springs from duality causes suffering, and that the cause of suffering is wrong desire that is based on an attachment to the things of this world, be it the sensual pleasures or the desire to be right in a human sense and feel that you are better than those whom you define as wrong because they are different from you or hold opposite views from you.
There are so many people on this planet who spend their entire lives seeking to establish this sense of superiority of being better than others. They always see themselves as being in competition with others and this goes from the so-called ordinary people, who are, as the saying goes, seeking to keep up with the Joneses, in having better houses, bigger cars and more material goods. And it goes all the way up to the people in the power elite who are seeking to have more power than those other people in those other power elite groups with whom they are comparing themselves.
You can spend lifetimes on this senseless quest of seeking to be thought right among men. Or you can reach up for the reality of being right with higher awareness. Yet in order to be right with higher awareness, you must be willing to consciously and willfully choose to let go of your attachments to the things in the material realm. For as long as you are attached to being right with other people, to being popular or not to be seen as an outcast or ridiculed for your beliefs, or your lifestyle or your actions, as long as you are attached to anything, any appearance in this world, to your standing among human beings, then you will not be free to grasp the right of higher awareness or to express that right.
The Buddha taught, 2,500 years ago, that non-attachment is the key to peace of mind. And that teaching is true. It is timeless. It is eternal. Yet there is no teaching expressed in words that the human ego cannot pervert. For anything expressed in words can be taken by the dualistic mind and interpreted according to this extreme or that extreme or even the false concept of the Middle Way as something that is right between the two dualistic extremes.
Even the concept of the Middle Way can be misinterpreted. For truly, the Buddha never told people to come to the midpoint between the two dualistic extremes. He taught them to transcend the entire scale of duality, the entire consciousness of duality. And this is the essence of Buddhahood. Yet to transcend duality, you must be willing to let go of the desires, the beliefs, the attachments that spring from duality. And thus, you must come to the point, where you love the right of higher awareness more than the right of man.
This must in the end be a conscious decision you make. Truly, not everyone is ready to make that decision. But certainly those who are the more aware people are ready or can quickly become ready. And if you will contemplate these concepts, you will come to a point, where you feel a spontaneous, inner surge of love for the reality of higher awareness that suddenly makes it easy to let go of some attachment. And once you realize how easy it is to let go of one attachment, you can build a momentum of letting go of the attachments as quickly as you see them.
Remain peaceful inside yourself
It is not necessarily easy to always know what is right with higher awareness. And the reason for this is that there is no outer rule that can be given in this world for what is right according to the absolute reality of higher awareness. For each situation, each person, is different. In one situation it might be right to do one thing. But in another situation, that might seem similar based on outer appearances, it may be right to do what seems to be the opposite. And thus, you cannot know this by setting up rules with the analytical mind that loves to create labels and say that, “Under these circumstances you should always do this. And under those circumstances you should always do that.”
This will not work. For then you have pulled yourself into the realm of the intellect which can only operate in the field of duality. Yet you can attain much by consciously working on non-attachment. For truly, when you are non-attached to the outer appearances, you will not be tempted to respond according to a human standard for what should be right in this or that situation. You will then be able to reach up for the reality of higher awareness, so you will spontaneously do what is right.
Yet in order to do what is right with higher awareness, you must realize that non-attachment is not the same as indifference. If you will study the life of the Buddha, you will notice that he walked a path of attaining complete non-attachment to the things of this world. And then, after having attained that non-attachment which is commonly in Buddhist terms called Enlightenment, he still faced an initiation that many Buddhists do not understand or even look upon. For he faced the temptation that the forces of this world said, “Oh, but what you have seen, what you have attained, is far too advanced or complicated for the people on earth. You will not be able to explain it to them. They will not be able to understand it. None will understand you, so don’t bother to go out in the world and bear witness to your truth. Just stay in Nirvana and leave the world to the forces of duality. Do not attempt to enlighten the people, for they will not understand.”
He passed that initiation only by connecting to the higher awareness within him. And through that connection he got the clear impulse: “SOME will understand.” And he went out and started preaching his truth and some did indeed understand. Thus, you will face the same initiation. First you face the initiation of attaining non-attachment to other people’s reactions, so that when they reject your light, your truth, you are non-attached to their reactions. And you do not allow their rejection to become an excuse that the ego can use to trick you into turning off your light or being quiet about challenging the unreality on earth.
Yet in attaining and working on that non-attachment, you will then come to the temptation of thinking, “What is the point of seeking to enlighten people when they are so far down into the consciousness of duality and seemingly are so uninterested in anything spiritual?” It is a delicate balance to remain non-attached but at the same time not to become indifferent, not to give up, not to become a pacifist who just sits there and lets the world do what it will do without challenging what is unreal. And each of you must find your own balance, for there is an idolatry in the world which thinks that it was easy for the Buddha to walk the path and pass his initiations and then find his balance and go out and preach his truth.
Likewise, they say it was easy for Jesus to pass his initiations and then go out and witness to his truth. But it was fully as difficult for Jesus and the Buddha as it is for you. We all have certain elements of the human condition that we must surrender and overcome before we manifest a higher state of consciousness. And the human conditions that each of us have are precisely those conditions that are the hardest for us to see. So Jesus was not born in the fullness of his Christhood, and the Buddha was not born in the fullness of Buddhahood, as is clearly seen in their lives.
Therefore, they too had to overcome their own points of blindness that they could not see. And precisely that which they could not see was as difficult for them to overcome as it is for each of you to overcome that which you cannot see. It is such an illusion to think that Jesus and the Buddha and other spiritual masters were above you and that it was so much easier for them. For indeed it was not easy at all. But the fact that they made it should be an encouragement that you too can make it. For as has been the motto of higher awareness for a long time, “What one has done all can do.” And in this age we might say, “What one is Being, all can Be!” For truly it is not doing that is the key but Being.
How to bear witness to your truth
Here is one hint of how to go out and bear witness to the truth, how to let your light so shine before men that by seeing your good works they see that it is not the outer person that is the doer, but the light of higher awareness within you that is the true doer. In order to do this, you must be non-attached without being indifferent. The key is that if you will strive to remain at peace, even when you are challenging other people, then you will always be in higher awareness.
So examine yourself. Are you reluctant to challenge others? Do you feel fearful, guilty or have other negative feelings when you do challenge others? In that case you might consider that you still have some attachment to an outer appearance that is preventing you from challenging others with the true inner peace of the Christ and the Buddha who have obtained complete non-attachment. And then you just look at that. You work on it. You go to the core of it and you let it go.
Do you seriously believe that Jesus and the Buddha did not have any remnants of the human ego when they were born? There are many people in Buddhism and Christianity who believe in this idolatry. But it was not so. For they had indeed elements of the ego, attachments and spiritual blindness that they needed to overcome. And how did they overcome it? It did not happen in one glorious moment of breakthrough into nirvana as some teachers portray it. It happened one little step at a time. Much of this has never been recorded because it was an inner path. And at the time that they both gave forth their respective teachings, humankind was not ready to understand the idiosyncrasies of the human psyche that people in many areas of the world are capable of understanding today.
Thus, they could not even teach it at the time. And they had to give forth a simpler teaching that was adapted to the consciousness that people had back then in those far darker times. Yet in today’s age you have the teachings and the tools to systemically overcome every attachment. And when you lock in to your own higher being – and know that you are that awareness, and not the outer personality, or the ego or the body or the person that other people have created in their minds – then you will be able to come to a point where you are willing to let go of any attachment as soon as you see it.
And you know that no matter what might come up, you will be willing to let go of it. And this is the true hallmark of a true seeker of higher awareness who has begun to find that which so many still seek without knowing what they are even seeking. And thus, even though you are not necessarily completely free of attachments, you can still obtain the inner peace that passes understanding because it is not based on any outer security in the form of having bigger bombs or bigger cannons than these other nations. Or even the false intellectual security of thinking that because you belong to this or that religion, or this or that scientific world view and understand all of its concepts intellectually you are sure to be saved.
No, it is a peace that is beyond all outer appearances that does not depend upon any conditions in the material realm, and therefore cannot be taken away by any conditions in the material realm no matter what happens. This is the inner peace that higher awareness desires to see all of you have. And this is the inner peace the Buddhas had attained before he started his mission. Yet you will make faster progress if you are willing to bear witness to the truth that you see even though you may not yet see the highest truth.
Jesus and the Buddha had to set forth certain examples. And so they withdrew from the world until they had attained a consciousness that would allow them to fulfill their missions. But precisely because they were meant to set up examples, they also faced a tremendous opposition to those missions that you do not face individually because in this day and age it is the priority that many people walk the path together instead of just one person being the forerunner. So each of you individually is not facing the same opposition that they faced, which is why you can start bearing witness to the truth even before you have obtained complete non-attachment and peace of mind.
And indeed, by doing so, you will make greater progress than if you withdrew from society until you had attained a higher state of consciousness. So be willing to bear witness to your truth even if you are not perfect, even if you are still disturbed by other people rejecting you. For if you have that courage, that willingness, you will surely make much faster progress, especially if you are willing to look at yourself and say, “Ah, but why was I disturbed by other people’s reaction? Is there not an element of the ego hiding behind that disturbance? And so if I look at it, can I not expose my ego and then surrender it?”
Indeed, you can look at yourselves and say, “Am I fully comfortable and at peace by standing up and expressing my higher awareness, or am I still concerned about other people’s reactions?” If you discover such concerns, look at them and say, “Why did I feel disturbed? Why could l not be at peace, for after all, if I am expressing my higher awareness then why should I feel disturbed about any appearance?” The peace you need to strive for is that you can bear witness to your truth and let your light shine no matter the outer conditions or the reactions you get from other people. You are not disturbed. They do not take away your peace. You do not feel rejected because you have no attachment to how they should respond. You simply allow their free will to work itself out and leave it up to them whether they will accept or reject the higher truth that they have now seen in you.
And when you can have that non-attachment, nothing will disturb you. Nothing will take away your peace. Do not think that you are so far away from Buddhahood that it would take you the rest of your life or even years or decades to obtain that inner peace, for it is not so for most of you. You can attain that inner peace in a relatively short period of time if you will make use of the teachings and the tools that you have, and ask how others have obtained it and then share and help each other come into that sense of inner peace.
This is a realistic goal—that the more aware people as a worldwide community, can obtain if you will openly put your minds to it. Use the tools, but also be willing to talk about this openly and ask questions. And help each other. Inspire each other. And be willing to be open and honest with each other and say, “I think you still have an attachment and that is why you are disturbed about this. Let us see if we together can discover the cause of that attachment so that it can be surrendered into higher awareness.”