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.
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?