Inner  Frontier
Fourth Way Spiritual Practice

 

Inner Work


For the week of April 29, 2013

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Natural Purity

(Developing Wisdom: Part 4)

As we saw in our study of Deep Thinking, the conscious energy has the hallmark of stillness. That clear, inner stillness, that fully aware inner peace, reveals to us a key quality, namely purity. We are naturally pure. To the extent we can live in inner stillness, we release the bonds of self-centered egoism. When you are in the cognizant stillness of your mind-heart on conscious energy, you understand and see that consciousness has no boundaries, no center, and no divisions. There is no place in consciousness for self-centeredness; it simply does not arise in that open space.

This is not to say that we disappear. In consciousness, our individuality, our I, our will, does have its place. Only now we are free of the illusory divisions that twist our will toward egoism. The true connection of our individuality with the sacred, universal spirit comes to the fore, no longer obscured by self-centeredness. I am here. I am the one who is conscious and I am a part, a doing of the All. That inclusiveness, that lack of separateness is our true state and our natural purity. This is not something that we need to create; it is something we can just relax back into by letting go of our singular focus on the surface, for example our focus on all the thoughts that keep going through our mind and the emotional reactions coursing through our heart. Beneath those thoughts and emotions lies the realm of stillness, of consciousness, of peace, and ultimately of love.

We are not outsiders in that place of purity, in the sacred spirit. Our deepest and truest self comes from there, belongs there, is at home there. So it is not a question of going outside our I, or beyond our I. Rather we return to the roots of our I, roots that we share with all people, with all life. Pursuing that return is a worthy undertaking, to which we bring our best, our self, our full engagement. In the wake of entering this purity, we discover that humility and compassion follow naturally.

You might try this meditation. Sit quietly, comfortably, and alertly. Relax. Let your eyes close. Relax your body thoroughly, finding the tensions and letting them go. Relax deeper still by not trying to shape your experience in any way, other than being aware of what is taking place in you in the moment. Just sit.

Let your thoughts go on their own, without getting lost in them. Gradually, if you do not feed them with your reactions, with your interest in their specific content, your thoughts will settle down, slow down of their own accord. You begin to notice gaps between thoughts. Silences between the sounds of your thoughts voicing themselves in your mind, blanks between the mental images.

In these gaps you remain aware. You see that you can be aware of the silence between thoughts. Your awareness of that silence grows. You see that this inner silence exists not only between thoughts, but underneath and around your thoughts. You see that this inner silence has the nature of awareness itself, that it is cognizant, conscious. You see that this inner silence actually is your awareness, your consciousness in its pure state, prior to any content.

At that point you can rest in awareness, in consciousness. In this transition, the invisible background of your mind, consciousness, has come to the foreground. You can be in the pure consciousness that surrounds you, that permeates you, that has no boundaries, that is simply a vast, clear field of awareness itself. You can just be in that. When thoughts come, they float past without disturbing you. You just are, naturally pure.

Wisdom flows from that purity, because without the distractions of self-centeredness, you live your unity with other people and with all life, your choices and actions hold true to the real needs and highest potentials of the moment.

For this week, explore your natural purity.


     

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