Ahm, I don’t really know how to articulate it… But something about, you know… You talk about the layers of… the layers of the body, the layers of the self, the layers of resistance… Ahm, I’m just wondering, how that might show up in physical… pain. You know, pain is the description of something that… that we’ve seen, so it’s… You know, it has that label.
Well, yeah. Pain is…
Sometimes pain is just functional pain, you know, like a toothache, or…
And it’s not psychological, it’s just… something is not right,
and needs attention or a painkiller of something.
And it sometimes… it’s honest, clear what the pain is.
And it might be that it’s resistance, or chronic resistance,
or a feeling that is embedded somehow… constricted… not allowed to unfold,
or… There could be many possibilities. We don’t mind what it is; but…
Well. It’s hard to discriminate.
If it’s the first kind of pain, then you know what it is,
you have to… You can do something.
Or you have to… you have to [sensitively lowering her voice]
somehow deal with it, and… bear it… and hope that it gets better…
But usually there’s something that we can do for that kind of pain.
The second, the psychological-physical, “psychosomatic” pain, requires… ah…
Well, requires what we were doing this morning, a quality of welcoming.
So the first requirement is that we have to take our stand.
We have to somehow be open to the possibility, or recognize…
–because we know it already, but–
experientially recognize that
right this moment,
is this borderless Presence
That may not be self-evident. It might be that you are very early in your expression of this so-called “Non-dual” understanding. So that might need some clarifying, both at the level of the mind and then at the level of feeling: “What does it mean?”
Again, this is what we’re doing here, but I’m not sure where you are in your process.
Once we take our stand, you could say, as the sky –the sky is transparent; it’s borderless; it doesn’t have a preference in terms of the weather systems– so that means that you are experiencing yourself as something that is quite unfocused, and… unbothered. The sky doesn’t mind.
So as soon as you feel bothered, you know that you’ve narrowed your perspective again, that you’ve taken a point of view, as a cloud in fact –a cloud viewing another cloud– and so in this approach, you have to… When that happens, you can’t undo it; you will have to see it first. When you see it –meaning you feel it, you experience it, you see that this focusing of attention appears on the radar of experience as a contraction or resistance, and it’s appearing in Awareness.
So, in that seeing, in a way, the focusing relaxes. And it’s on and on and on throughout the session like that. It’s… [undulatingly moving her hand] it’s… I think you said, “back and forth, back and forth…”
So, sometimes you’re back in the body,
as the body, as the resistance…
Stuck. Lost in experience.
And then, “A!” Ellen says something, or you
realize it, and somehow there’s space again.
You are tasting the openness that you are!
And then, therefore, the tears can flow, or…
[knowing, compassionate look]
And in terms of pain, over time, in this exploration,
we find that whatever psychosomatic contraction…
–which is what the separate self is, at the level of the body–
it’s what I-Awareness becomes when I believe myself to be a body;
a contraction, and, you know: Ouch!
In order to maintain that [separate self], there’s a lot of
tension that is generated at some localized, various places:
around the head… in the shoulders… in the feeling centres…
Depending on each of us… on our… preferences! [Laughs]
So, over time you find that these relax, and pains soften.
No, you go ahead.
It’s just, as you were saying, that… The other thing that occurred to me was, one that will… It’s what you said earlier, that there’s no [inaudible 13 seconds]
However, most of us,
at some point during the sessions,
we will feel the arising of an agenda!
But that’s perfect.
Because then we can, instead of taking the train of the agenda, and saying,
Yeah, I’m gonna get rid of this terrible resistance blah blah blah,
Ah, agenda… Let’s see…
Let’s see what it’s made of; where… how does it appear on the body…
This anticipation, this… this desire; this… whatever we wanna call it;
and you know, there might be also a thought that comes with it,
but you’re even more interested in
What is an agenda at the level of the body?
What is agenda-ing, at the level of the body.
For you. Because it’s different for all of us.
You also said something…
You talked about offering to altar…
There’s something quite rich about that.
Yeah. That’s nice. That’s good; because…
In my experience, sometimes when you’re lost in “suffering”,
or in separation, or in believing that I am this bodymind,
and if we’ve lost sight of… I won’t say “God”, but…
If we’ve lost sight of the sweet… the sweetness, the…
So, before we can actually really step into the recognition of I Am God,
we somehow… we have to turn back towards God. As the separate self.
At this moment, we are the separate self! That’s what we believe!
So. That separate self needs to take herself to the shrine! [laughs understandingly]
Chris, even though she’s believing yourself to be a separate self;
in the heart, in her own heart, there’s such a longing…
In her body, there’s such a thirst for the Truth…
So, that thirst, or longing; or sadness, whatever it is,
takes you to the shrine…!
And there, you kneel in front of the altar…
The only thing you can do; is surrender.
My teacher used to say, “It sooo helped me,
to offer your experience to the altar”.
And “experience” means
And in doing that,
you realize that it’s not a doing.
First you do it, and then you realize,
Oh, it’s the…
It’s the nature of experience
that it surrenders itself back to Presence.
Oh, I am… I!
I is the altar.
Ellen Emmet transcribed by Leon Hieros