Perfect Love Does NOT Cast Out Fear

This post is in response to a question from a friend who shall be called Renee. It is repeated below with slight editing:

“The fear of death and physical suffering still seizes me sometimes. not only for myself, but for my loved ones. This indicates to me that there is still some belief that what I am is encased in this body/mind and that there is a personal doer. yet, when the fear arises, and I investigate, what I experience is emptiness, spaciousness, boundlessness, lightness. yet the belief of a personal doer must be there otherwise this fear wouldn’t arise. but I can’t find the root of this belief to root it out!

The arising of these fears tells me that the liberation I have been searching for, the freedom, still has not come, otherwise there would be no fear. I have seen suffering in my loved ones…my parents who passed away, my husband who died, and dear friends, who have suffered, and who are currently suffering with cancer. So, from my experience of loved ones around me, there is the potential for horrible suffering. Fortunately, in my life, I have been blessed with a healthy body, so I have not experienced physical suffering very much myself. But I see the potential for suffering, and I think this inhibits my ability to rest in the pure lightness of being that is our very essence and trust that it is indeed holding this very experience of being, which is called, Renee, in its loving arms, and that all is well, all ways and always for all of “us”.

First, the title, “Perfect Love does not cast out fear,” is based on a passage from the book of John in the Bible which says, “Perfect Love casts out fear.” It exemplifies how the “perspective” of this website differs from much of spirituality—whether in the Bible, nonduality, or as implied in the question above.

Perfect Love leaves only Perfect Love.

Period.

If Perfect Love co-existed with something besides Itself called fear that it could cast out, or should be expected to cast out, It wouldn’t be Perfect Love.

Perfect Love is another way of saying unconditional Love. It is infallibly present Love. It is unrestrainable Infinite Love. It cannot be manipulated, directed, funneled, partially blocked or shut off, for there is only Perfect Love. This Infinite, unconditional Love never is influenced by another nor even experienced by another—because there is no other.

There is only Perfect Love.

This infallibility is exactly the same as how history-less Presence is right now infallibly present, infallibly and unconditionally free of any prior existence or experience—even for Itself! This is the only One present, alive—so all there ever is to “consider” is This—and the only One to “consider” or experience It is Itself.

If the use of “history-less Presence” as used above is not crystal clear, it is suggested you read the free excerpt “Present Consciousness” on the Writings page here on the website.)

The Bible version, of course, is speaking of how Love casts out fear, or leads to improvements, in what appears as human experience. It is speaking from the apparent, from the “human side of the fence.”

This is not speaking from that side of the fence. It is speaking from Infinity which is not even “the other side of the fence,” but Infinity where there is no fence, and not two sides. There is no attempt to improve an apparent experience, nor is there a negating of such a thing. There is only Infinity, history-less Presence, which has had no prior experience. Please do not “read into” this any other conclusion.

The way the question above is worded, it sounds as if there is much wonderful clarity. However, it also sounds in places as if it is about a “me” who has gained some clarity, but still has a ways to go. It also sounds as if there is an idea or expectation (thought) as to how Freedom should look or feel. And if Freedom isn’t experienced, then it is the fault or shortcoming of this “me” who has progressed somewhat, but not completely.

It is not wholly and only “starting from” or AS what Infinite Presence is to Infinite Presence—period.

“…when the fear arises, and I investigate, what I experience is emptiness, spaciousness, boundlessness, lightness. yet the belief of a personal doer must be there otherwise this fear wouldn’t arise.”

As long as one still appears to have a body that breathes and eats food, etc., there may be some degree of experiencing what goes with the human, including human feelings. However, none of this experience is personal, and none of it can be claimed as personal, or taken personally. The body that appears in the “dream” of human experience is 100% a product of, or puppet of, the dream. That includes all the apparent thoughts and emotions that seem to go with body. It all belongs to the dream.

Perfect Love, (pure Presence here now) was not born, so IT cannot have a fear of death. That too, would belong to the so-called dream only. So there is no claiming of such feelings as “mine” and they are not seen as a problem “which I have not yet rooted out.” History-less Presence has had no prior experience in which It picked up something which now must be rooted out. It is utter Purity. Such feelings may even still seem to “knock at the door” for awhile. The key is to not identify with, or claim them.

“…but I can’t find the root of this belief to root it out!”

Exactly! The root can’t be found because it doesn’t have its own root. It doesn’t have its own presence or “inherent existence” as emptiness teachings would say. Its only seeming presence seems to arise thanks to an “ignoring” of the lightness, spaciousness, openness and emptiness of pure Infinity, history-less Present-ness.

When 100% “consciously busy” as Infinite Openness, a sense of fear simply cannot continue to operate because it doesn’t have its own cause, source or presence to operate. It only seems to “show up” when it seems there is a “falling asleep” to pure NOW. It’s just the way a dream seems to show up when there’s a falling asleep or an “ignoring” of awakeness.

“I have seen suffering in my loved ones…my parents who passed away, my husband who died, and dear friends, who have suffered, and who are currently suffering with cancer. So, from my experience of loved ones around me, there is the potential for horrible suffering.”

Perfect Love is always “on.” It is infallibly Its own pure Presence, which is ALL Presence, if one is to use such terms. Perfect Love does not “see”—whether by way of eyes, or even mentations, or mental concepts. It just is unrestrainable, unconfined, history-less Love. To It, there is no potential for suffering—the only “potential” there is, is for “endlessly more and more pure Love.”

Perfect Love is un-seeing and un-see-able.

Invisible, indivisible Love does not see anything visible.

Love equally does not see anything divisible, or separate that It could be loving toward.

There is only Love’s un-see-able-ness as All.

Love cannot, and does not, make such statements as those in the question above. So it seems from that statement, as if there is still a bit of identification with the apparent. It is the identification with, attachment to, what appear as loved ones. Yet Perfect Love does not have any “loved ones” and no attachments, for there is only Itself.

As long as there appears to be this kind of attachment with the apparent (with the “good” side), then one is subject to the “other side of the coin” which is fear, loss, etc. When there is this kind of attachment to forms (even family) it, too, really would be an “ignoring” of Infinite Presence. And it is in this “ignoring” or dreaming that the door opens to all the other aspects of the dream (fear, etc.).

Don’t misunderstand, there is nothing wrong with “having loved ones”!—but one should not kid oneself either. Unconditional Love cannot funnel Itself more towards some bodies than others. In fact, It cannot funnel Itself, period. Nor is there a lesser self to mistakenly do such a thing.

This is what “separates the men from the boys” in spirituality—because it definitely is not popular with a personality that wants to be loving toward what it assumes are other personalities! This does not mean one will appear to be cold or aloof or shut off from others either—for that would be just as human and personal as being attached! It’s just the opposite side of the coin of being humanly loving and compassionate. But it’s still human.

Perfect Love cannot shut Itself off.

“I see the potential for suffering, and I think this inhibits my ability to rest in the pure lightness of being that is our very essence and trust that it is indeed holding this very experience of being, which is called, Renee, in its loving arms, and that all is well, all ways and always for all of “us”.

This again is where the perspective here differs. To Perfect Love, Indivisible Love, there never has been, never will be, anything beside Itself that It could “embrace in Its loving arms.” There being only Perfect Love, It is not looking over “others” nor are there others looking to It.

The notion that Infinite Love is all of what appears as a world and relative experience can be misleading. That’s actually starting in the “wrong place,” with the seeming apparent—because it is not genuinely existent, alive, present.

Rather, what Love’s un-shut-off-able, alive openness and invisible Purity is—THIS is what All is! And if it appears as if a world is superimposed on Invisible Love—so what? It doesn’t alter Love’s pure Present-ness in the slightest.

Rather than “investigating” feelings, sensations, thoughts, etc. (which can seem helpful at times)—do a Perfect Love investigation.

Do an Infinite Presence inquiry. Can It be shut off? Does It have a border, an edge where It stops? Can It be said to have any history, any prior experience? Would Love say such a thing, or would those be only human assumptions?

Santa Monica Reminder April 9-10

Please join us for what promises to be a fantastic weekend–still a few openings remaining for
“Are We Having Fun Yet?”

Life’s freedom and happiness are present right now, so there’s no reason why this can’t be experienced right now. It’s a matter of “coming from” Present-ness, Aliveness, and Its unlimitedness. If there’s anything that still seems to “be in the way” we’ll be taking a close look at it–and seeing through anything that pretends to make for “un-freedom.”

Dates: April 9-10 (Saturday & Sunday)Times: Sessions will be approximately 10 AM to 4PM both days. Location: Sunset Park Church, 1515 Maple St., Santa Monica 90405Cost: $75 for both days – $50 for either single dayParking available.

RSVP required. To RSVP, or for more information, please email via the Contact page here on the website.

Bodhi Tree Friday Eve. Talk: “Untie Yourself From Time”

There will also be a talk Friday, April 8 at the Bodhi Tree Bookstore from 7:30-9:30 PM. Admission $15.

8585 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood, CA 90026. Phone: 310-659-1733. For directions and parking: http://www.bodhitree.com/

Please join us if you can–it would be great to see you there! Peter

Is Thought A Power?

This post is in response to another good question, which came in from a friend called Lily. Here it is, below:

What is called the ¨world out there¨ is the very mind, not something apart from mind, but mind itself, something mind ¨is¨ and ¨does.¨ Is this right? So, even when this ¨world out there¨ is a false impression, ¨mind¨ can take place, so to speak, only because there is Consciousness, otherwise mind and its false impressions could not even be recognized as such. Then, mind, stemming from Consciousness (which would be the only ¨source¨ available, if you will, and therefore, the only power there is), kind of derives from It its ¨qualification ¨ to what looks like its ability to ¨create¨ this ¨world out there¨ with its seeming conditions; all this through the aid of ¨thought,¨ as it were?

To this extent then, if the above were correct, can it be said that there is power in thought as an extension of Consciousness?

Could this be the reason behind what the mind-sense of a ¨personal me¨ experiences as seeming tangible ¨evil¨ of every kind? And thus, there could be an answer for it in just ¨taking no thought¨?

The best way to reply to this is in portions:

What is called the ¨world out there¨ is the very mind, not something apart from mind, but mind itself, something mind ¨is¨ and ¨does.¨ Is this right?

Yes. It is important to see that what appear as things are really not separate items or objects that the “mind” knows about. They would be the mind itself. This is the subject of chapters 13 -16 in the book. However, this is a good opportunity to emphasize another important point about “mind.”

When referring to appearances, to the finite realm, to the everyday world of phenomena, the terms “finite mind” and “finite sense-mind” are used a lot in Cons. Is All. However, those are just terms of convenience. There really is no such entity as a “mind” which does things such as thinking and experiencing sensations.

Yes, on a finite basis it seems as if thoughts arise. It seems as if sensations are experienced—sight, sound, touch, taste and smell. It seems emotions are experienced. Even the “self” that seems to witness all this is a kind of arising thought, and depends entirely on what it supposedly witnesses for its very seeming presence. They are opposite sides of a coin. Take away what is witnessed, and there cannot be said to be a witness, and vice-versa.
But these all would be just random arising experiences. It is not as if there is something else, a “mind,” that is their source or is “generating” thoughts and sensations. When all these arising forms are lumped together, the term “mind” is used as a kind of collective label.
Meanwhile, Infinity does not “witness” any such thing because Infinity is not witnessable, and to Infinity there is nothing besides Infinity to witness.

So, even when this ¨world out there¨ is a false impression, ¨mind¨ can take place, so to speak, only because there is Consciousness, otherwise mind and its false impressions could not even be recognized as such. Then, mind, stemming from Consciousness (which would be the only ¨source¨ available, if you will, and therefore, the only power there is), kind of derives from It its ¨qualification ¨ to what looks like its ability to ¨create¨ this ¨world out there¨ with its seeming conditions; all this through the aid of ¨thought,¨ as it were?

From the level of so-called “mind” or thought, the finite, it does seem as if thought is a creator of sorts. It seems as if thought is a cause. I have the thought that I’m going to the grocery store, and that thought causes my body to go there. But this seems to be the case only when this activity is seen from the level of thought itself.

There is another way of looking at what appears to occur.

First, it isn’t really that Consciousness is a “positive source” of such things, as you said. Pure Consciousness (meant here as synonymous with Infinity, Presence, Being), which is not dual, could not create both good and evil.

These things appear to happen because it seems utter Infinity, pure Being, is being “ignored” to some extent, even though not intentionally. Despite what we say about the ALLNESS of Consciousness, Infinity, it still seems or appears from a human point of view, as if there is still some degree of not 100% BEING It.
Identification with thought, giving thought “power,” is one way this ignoring seems to occur. (This ignoring literally is what “creates” the human or personal point of view!) Even posts such as this require some degree of thought to read. But here, and in other nondual writing, thought is used only as a means to wipe out the identification with thought! Our friend Escher brilliantly exemplifies this with his illustration of the hands in the photo above.
Yet, from the standpoint of pure Infinity, It cannot really ignore Itself in favor of thought, ever. There is no time in pure Present-ness in which ignoring could occur.
What occurs thanks to this seeming “ignore-ance” is far different than what seems to occur when something is “positively created” or caused on the level of thought.

This is far from a perfect example, but it’s like when a dream starts up after falling asleep. The falling asleep is kind of like “ignoring” awakeness–and while this ignoring seems to go on, all kinds of things can happen in the resultant dream. Yet no one intentionally thought, created or dreamed them up that way.

In the same way, when it seems there has been a “falling asleep” to Infinity, then all kinds of things can seem to appear in the so-called finite realm (which the Infinite really knows nothing of). And Infinity Itself really never can fall asleep or ignore Itself. So even to address such issues as if they were possible to the Infinite, is to be “off.”

To this extent then, if the above were correct, can it be said that there is power in thought as an extension of Consciousness? So that this could be the reason behind what the mind sense of a ¨personal me¨ experiences as seeming tangible ¨evil¨ of every kind? And thus, there could be an answer for it in just ¨taking no thought¨?

As far as “taking no thought” yes, the instincts were good on that one. In a sense that’s the “answer.” However, maybe a more specific way to put it would be to say “staying specifically alive as pure Present-ness” (which also is “taking no thought” but goes a bit “further”).

Pure Present-ness is single, without an opposite, and as one “lives here,” as this Awakeness, what seem to be appearances of duality and evil (suffering) have to fade because there is no longer a finite “dual mind” (ignorance, dream) to feed or ignore-antly “create” or dream them.

Appearances do not have their own presence or present-ness. Only pure Present-ness has, or IS, all Presence.

Starting from, or AS, pure Present-ness—there is absolutely no history of anything—not even of Present-ness Itself! One “lives here” because this is what Presence Itself (the only One alive!) is “doing” or being.

So there really is NO history of a mind or finite state that knows about or could produce evil—thus no such thing to perpetuate such appearances. (discussed a lot in Ch. 22). History-less Presence is present for Its own sake—It is not trying to clear up evil pictures—because to pure Present-ness nothing has existed before that could need clearing up—not even Itself!

It seems one has to stay alert to Present-ness, yes. But don’t let it become a struggle or task. Rather, just notice how effortlessly, how relentlessly, how totally, and how infallibly the Present is present.

In fact, as so often said here, try to make the Present, NOW, not be now, not be 100% pure and without history. It’s impossible!

It is a matter of “resting in” or “enjoying” the un-go-away-able-ness of It! And who or What is doing the resting or enjoying? History-less Presence Itself!

Whose Life Is It, Anyway?

This post is in response to several questions that came via email from a friend who shall be called Oscar.

First the questions (edited slightly) are repeated here:

Request: I am currently investigating stillness and mind watching, and seem to be comprehending but obviously there is no way to know if I am. Owing to cannabis misuse and flawed, excessive meditation of sorts I have caused some energy blockages that are severe and can be felt most of the time. One symptom is a tension in the stomach itself which is present during some of the time I have possibly been in stillness for. That said however, there are very brief periods where there is an all over easing, disappearance and lightness where all blockages are, including the stomach. The question is, can I be still and have the feeling of stomach tension and co. (as these blockages are now physical), or is it only when the rush of lightness and energy comes that I am being still?

Just in case I can’t come to grips with stillness and presence another means to realisation attracts me. Sri Nisargaddata Maharaj advised a man, who didn’t feel up to other sadhanas, to trust him when he said, “You are the Supreme Reality, beyond the world and its creator, beyond consciousness and its witness, and beyond all assetions and denials… Remember it, think on it, act on it… Abandon all sense of separation, see yourself in all and act accordingly… With action bliss will come with bliss conviction…”

Now, I believe I understand abandoning separation and seeing myself in all, because I have experienced bliss upon doing these two things. But I don’t feel I understand the three “beyonds.” My attempts include making no assertions or denials, behaving as if the concerns of consciousness and its witness don’t matter, and some vague notion of being beyond the world and its creator. My question is, do you think the abandoning of separation and the “seeing myself in all” is a paraphrase, or an elucidating of the thinking and action he indicated with the three “beyonds”? Or is there something that you can point out with the said “beyonds” that I have missed, for example just mulling over the assertion that I am the Supreme, paying no attention to the fact that I’m not still?

Thank you very much if you can help.

Thank you for these very honest comments and questions, Oscar. Since there are several questions, there are several replies. Your inquiry has touched on many important points; in fact, too many to go into here in one post.

First of all, the “perspective” of Consciousness Is All and this website is entirely and only that of the Infinite. This alone is the “starting point” and “ending point.”

In other words, it is a matter of looking out from the Infinite (the Divine, Self, One, etc. if those terms are preferable)—rather than looking up to the Infinite by starting as a “separate personal me.”

This is a complete “turn around” from the so-called normal human or personal perspective.
Look at the questions in your inquiry above. They are all about a “me” and what can this “me” do to help myself? Please don’t misunderstand—there’s nothing wrong with that, and “we” all seem to go through it—it’s totally normal (from a human point of view). It is mentioned here just as another way of emphasizing the contrast in “viewpoints.”
Here, EVERYTHING is coming from the Infinite, from ALL Itself—never from the so-called personal, human or finite. If you wish to continue with this, keep asking constantly, “What is the premise here? Is it a matter of “looking out as” pure Infinite Consciousness? Or is it starting with an Oscar-experience and trying to account for it, or somehow hook it up with Consciousness?”

In response, the thought may come, “Fine. It’s all well and good to say that. But how does one do that?”

Fortunately, this is not something that has to be done. It is what is unavoidably, unstoppably already being present here, now, as Infinite Presence, pure un-thinking Consciousness, formless alive Being.

Again, the perspective here is such a “reversal” of what seems to be the typical viewpoint, it does take some familiarizing. For that reason, I strongly suggest you get the book Consciousness Is All. If you’d like to sample it first, there are five chapters free here on the website on the Writings page. Please start with Chapter 1 because it is basic and essential in conveying where this is all coming from.

After reading the free chapters, you may wish to get the book. Then you could come back here to the website to read many of the posts here on the blog, and also the “Replies to Questions” on the Writings page, or watch/listen to the videos and audios. But I would strongly suggest starting with the book, chap 1, because the rest will then have much more significance.

Because this appears to be a complete “reversal” of the typical human, personal “viewpoint” and its way of experiencing itself and its world, naturally it seems to take some “getting used to” to turn the viewpoint around. Yet, even this is not something that Infinite Presence has to do.

What is “done” is just a matter of “becoming fascinated” with what Infinite Presence is to Its pure aliveness, and no longer identifying with all of the human thoughts, emotions, sensations, and energy-feelings which, seemingly, have up to now been identified as “Oscar.” After all, Infinite Life Itself is solely “interested in” Itself, not in Oscar or Peter–and who else, honestly, is being alive?

The pure Aliveness that Infinite Presence is, is not an energy blockage—and staying wholly alive to, or AS, pure Presence will seem to “dissolve” such blockages because they no longer are being “fed” or “resonated with.” No blockage can sustain itself on its own for it has no genuine presence of its own.

Is Presence ever blocked from Its own Presence? Is there anything between Life Itself and Its own aliveness? No. Start and stay “here” and let the “blockage” shift for itself.

The only Life, Self, Presence that is alive and present is that of Life Itself, the Divine Itself—so it is a matter of “starting” here and beholding what is true of IT. It is not a matter of, “How can I, Peter, or Oscar, get a better grip on the Infinite, the Divine.” The only one that can be the Infinite is the Infinite Itself—and as It is already fully being Itself, It leaves no Infinity left over for another to be!

But this doesn’t leave out a “you”—for that Infinite Itself is the very One being conscious, present here, now—because the Infinite Consciousness that is present right here is not something that Peter or Oscar personally activates or knows how to do.

Just as a “heads up” for example—the perspective here does not even recognize a Supreme Being as mentioned in Nisargadatta’s quote. As Being is Infinite, Utter, ALL—It means exactly that—ALL! ALL being truly ALL leaves nothing besides Its Allness over which It could be Supreme! It leaves no seekers, nothing separate, no otherness whatsoever having occurred.

Being ALL, ALL is not “beyond” anything, for its own ALLNESS leaves nothing that ALL could be beyond. If there were something else, All wouldn’t be ALL! The Infinite wouldn’t be truly Infinite! It may seem as if there is a human world of time and form that the Infinite is “beyond” but we are not starting from the seeming. The Infinite doesn’t start from a seeming, but only from Its Actuality.

Admittedly, some of this may make for head-scratching at first, and leave a feeling of “How can this be so?” and that’s why I suggest getting the book, where it is all clearly, slowly laid out. (And I’m not trying to sell books!)

One more: NEVER can “you” see yourself as All. The only One that can “see” Itself as ALL is ALL Itself. All’s ALLNESS leaves no other to even attempt to also see itself as All! But that is not “an” ALL that is afar off. It is the very boundless Infinite Consciousness alive here, now, as it appears these words are being read.

(By the way, be alert that when Nisargadatta used the word “consciousness” it usually referred to “human sensory consciousness”—not the Infinite, the Divine, which he sometimes referred to as the Absolute.) Here, the capitalized Consciousness (and also Awareness) refer entirely and only to the Infinite. The book Consciousness Is All is very clear on this distinction—and it’s also discussed extensively in free Chaps 4 and 5 in the Writings section.

I will email you some excerpts from Chapter 6, “Whose Life Is It Anyway?” which is not on the website—because the points are in line with what we’ve been discussing. However, chap 6 will be much clearer if you “save” it until after reading Chaps 1, 4 and 5.

Thanks so much for your sincerity and comments, Oscar! Please let us know how it’s going with the reading.

New Micro-website Within Stillnessspeaks.com

Hi Everyone,

I’m pleased to announce that recently, Chris Hebard of Stillnessspeaks.com generously invited several authors, including myself, to host mini-websites within Stillnessspeaks. It’s another opportunity to “get the word out” in a blog-type format, similar to here. Stillnessspeaks has a wide reach, so it is much appreciated!

There are already several posts there (I actually thought I already announced it here, then realized I hadn’t–oops!) which are of a different content than here on Reality Check. There is also one brief audio so far, on “All.” That’s one reason why things have been a bit quite here lately, but will pick up again here soon, too.

Please take a look when you have a moment: http://peterdziuban.stillnessspeaks.com/

Thanks, and see you back here soon!
Peter