The body could expand ad infinitum,
but you’re still somehow
Obviously this… this approach is the counterpart…
I guess most of you, possibly, are familiar with the non-dual teachings, to some extent, and often the way you explored onto a teaching is by reading, or attending satsang, but not so often possibly, do you explore this understanding at the level of the body. And it’s… it’s… You know, when you go to teachers, some teachers would do that… But it’s a very important place to continue and further the exploration.
Because the belief that “I am separate, and a fragment”, is both a belief at the level of the mind –you know, we’ve got lots of concepts and ideas about “what I am”– but it’s also very much a belief at the level of the senses, and at the level of the tactile sense. You know, we walk around feeling like “I, live in this body; as this body; separate from that body; separate from the world”. We identify with our body, and our mind.
So, here I hope that you have had a taste, a little bit of a taste of what this expression is about really. It’s about trying in a way… It’s an invitation to align how we perceive the body, with our understanding that our true identity is Awareness; is not located; is not bound by birth and death.
So obviously this is a radical exploration; and some of you may be new to it; new to it in general. Others may not be new to it, but it’s still a radical exploration because the belief, the conditioning that perpetuates the feeling of and the belief in separation, is very powerful. And a love that is operating under the surface, in kind of semi-obscurity, a love that believes is feelings. The feeling that “I’m a breather”; the feeling that “I am…” Yeah, as I said, located… [gesturing around her body] … that “I am the thinker” [around head]; headquarters here.
Where do you feel yourself to be located?
Well, kind of here…
[We don’t see the woman who is replying, but she must be gesturing around herself, indicating her energy body, as we understand from Ellen in a while.]
So that, is still a subtle experience, you see?
And if you were just to really welcome it… It’s subtle, so it’s less easy in a way to welcome; it’s more transparent; it’s more expanded; but it’s still a subtle body.
A subtle “I, the body” feeling. Because you just said it, “I’m sort of located here” [Ellen gestures around herself].
So, what is it that knows that subtle… You see? Where is that? Where is…
I would say it’s back and back and back…
Right. Yeah. And at some point, as you try to… [moves slightly backwards]
At some point –you just have to keep exploring– at some point, spontaneously, there’ll be an unsticking from any object of experience… There’ll be a glimpse… You will have an understanding, that nothing that appears as an object of experience, is it. It, is not an experience.
But that happens… I can’t induce that, it’s not something we can induce. It’s as… it’s… it’s just…
As we explore experience, and as we turn ourselves towards the possibility that what I truly am is not located… in space… or in time… and is not an object that can… not a thought, not a feeling, not a perception…
Is Presence… Is Divine… Is… whatever you want to call it.
The more you open to that, and the more we explore experience, there’s a moment where… [surprised expression] it’s seen; or it’s felt.
Is that a space that people are able to live from?
Or is it a place that comes and goes?
There are no “people who live from”.
Ahhh… [Both laugh]
But it… the knowing of that,
the knowing of “what I am”,
which is what you are right this moment…
there’s nothing exotic about it,
it’s the Awareness that is here
right this moment…
But seems to be –at times, and more often than not– limited; body-bound; seems to have been born; seems to… it seems that it will die; that “I” will die…
So it’s a very… obviously a very natural conditioning, a very strong conditioning.
The more we explore, this conditioning, and unearth the fallacy of it, the fact that it’s not our experience, the more we go there deeply, the more it relaxes. Because this is only a tension; a kind of contraction; a kind of habit, of… of separation, you could say. So the more we… And it’s natural, you know; it doesn’t disappear overnight; it takes… And it’s fine; it doesn’t have to. Because we already are what we are. There’s no problem. It’s like the sky is already, always sh… the sky, behind the clouds. But sometimes, the sky is absolutely not visible. But the sky doesn’t think, Oh my God, I’m not visible! I’m not here! The sky is happy being the sky. It’s the same with what we are.
But the belief, both at the level of the mind and at the level of the body, is still very much active. And that’s what we have to challenge. By going to… And the way to challenge it is to go there, and really inquire, you know,
Who is this one on behalf of whom all these thoughts revolve?
Who, or where is this one located?
This feeling of living behind the eyes…
What is it that perceives it?
Where does it appear?
What is it made of?
Is there really somebody living there?
Behind the eyes?
Is there somebody… is there…
Is this feeling in the torso really indicating
that I am limited; and separate?
Or is it just a sensation appearing in…
You see? You… you… So this is this what we were doing this morning.
And obviously it’s… You were exploring this morning, and you need to continue.
Ahm, I mean you don’t need to, but… You will get the answers!
Or rather, the answer is here, but things will relax into the answer more and more.
So do you think it could be not productive to continue to experience this sense of more porousness that I have, and going back and back…
When you experience the body, don’t think about it; approach it with a going back and back, and… So you have this feeling of more and more porousness, and then you think I’m gonna go back, I’m going back…
But at some point pause, and welcome the totality of that subtle, porous, going-back-and-back feeling, and… And just do that.
It’s an object still. Subtle object, but an object. And know, know but verify, that all objects appear, unfold and dissolve in something that is not, never an object. And the more you explore, if you welcome this very expanded, porous, but nevertheless still-an-object experience… Something will happen.
If you welcome it. Someth… I can’t make it happen. But I guarantee you, that, if you make your best attempt at exploring your experience like that, at moving towards the truth, the truth will… if you do your best; you don’t have to get there; you can’t; we are the truth. But if that which feels “I’m not the truth” reaches towards the truth, the best it can –going back and back, [melodiously] welcoming, doing all the things Ellen says, whatever– and at some point, the truth just *phewt*! [opening arms] It’s like *phsewt*!
It just takes you; it takes whatever is left. You did your job.
But if you th… and it’s not bad to think about it, it’s very good to ask the question; but there’s a time, I think, to explore on the tactile level, and there’s a time to clarify with the mind. And then they kind of [balancing as if with scales on her hands]… they kind of help each other out. They’re like a team. When we explore the body, sometimes we can use something we understood with the mind to… to… to visualize something… to remember,
Oh, wait a minute… Ah, this is an object, yes. Let me…
Does that help?
I know exac…
So, sometimes I’m going “Oh God! That’s a little… It’s just like a little…”
But you’re still somehow locating yourself in the body that can expand. And the body could expand ad infinitum… Like, you can make a body that was like [opening arms]… And it’s not a bad thing to do, because it’s… it’s… it’s…
At some point,
something will happen
that lets you know that your real body
is the body of Awareness; invisible body;
and you… we…
were trying to align our sensations
to this understanding that
all there is anyway is Consciousness.
So, you will get there.
But when you’re expanding, and expanding…
and moving back and back,
you still have somehow
taken your stand
in and as the body.
And at some point you have to…
… through the guidance that is here, or through…
just through intelligence, or through an insight…
[she slightly gasps; expression of recognition]
It’s seen to be an object!
And there’s a moment of clear seeing,
or clear feeling, you could say;
or clear not feeling…
Ah, I don’t really know
how to speak about these things
as clearly as I wish I could;
but I hope that it helps.
Keep exploring, for sure.
And maybe when you
start any explorations,
start with being…
if not knowing,
at least being open
to the possibility
that what you are
is not an object
And you could also add,
be open to the possibility that
What I am,
right this moment,
Or whatever words really evoke
something that you could never ever find
as a thought or sensation.
But that yet SHINES.
Shines at every moment. In everything.
Is never… Could never not be here.
It’s all there is really.
It’s just that we superimpose limitation.
Like right this moment, you know,
there’s a visual perception,
there is “you” and “me”,
But then there’s this… something.
that’s not a perception.
You don’t have to reconcile it with your perceptions.
It’s what gives rise to all perceptions, and all thoughts.
Ellen Emmet transcribed by Leon Hieros