Grotto Waterfall at Juniper Level Botanic Garden – Anita Avent

Do you sometimes sense your true essence extending beyond your skin?  Does spending time in nature or seeing and sensing great beauty expand your awareness and quiet your mental chatter? Many of us are searching for relief from the incessant thoughts in our heads. We want inner peace and calm and have forgotten the simple wonder and aliveness we felt as children before we were taught to name, label, and claim what we perceive through our senses.

Nearly all of us were educated to believe we would grow and mature into adults.  What occurs, unbeknownst to us, is we are deeply programed by society, family, educators, and religion to enter and maintain what I refer to as the Identity Trap.  This trap is the widely-held belief that “I am appearing as a separate person in a world of other separate persons.”  Very few in society, science, and religion ever question this assumption since it is a consensus belief. This one false belief sets the stage for untold amounts of useless suffering.

And…this one singular belief in being a separate being also creates a stunning and mind-numbing cascade of millions of subsequent beliefs pointing to a seemingly tangible world of subjects and objects with a separate and personal me at the center looking out upon a solid and lasting world of others, things, and places.

Yes, this sounds crazy if this is the first time you have been pointed towards this natural, original way of perceiving. Imagine my shock when I finally realized in 2011 that Jesus the Christ, the Buddha, Lao Tzu and many historical teachers were echoing the same wisdom as the Perennial Wisdom Teachings.  In both Eastern and the Western cultures the Perennial Wisdom teachings have been passed along generation by generation to those who have searched for Truth.  “Become as little children” as Jesus the Christ said in the New Testament. Yet nearly all of us, about 99%, have so much invested in our identity as a person and the story about our life that we have no interest in exploring what’s behind these mental and emotional projections we call “our life.”

We fail to see these mental stories and beliefs are the root cause of all our personal suffering. These ancient teachings are entirely relevant today and will confuse the brain and our carefully crafted stories and memories we’ve created of separate selves.

So, if you and I are not separate, what/how are we?  Sages and Saints across all cultures and ages have described this same crazy thinking.  Some sages have been crucified for uttering this truth of unicity, of reality, of oneness, and others were banished.  Most were ignored and/or labeled as crazy and possessed.  Some lived in exile, and some passed the teachings on to their students or followers.

Personal suffering is optional when seen in this light.  Mere words and language will never adequately describe what is beyond a relative view or perspective of life since nearly all language is relative.  Music, art, dance, and poetry come closer to describing the elusive and fleeting nature of what is seeming to appear here as reality than mere words can ever communicate.

What is appearing cannot be reduced to a simple “subject and object” relationship as is required by speaking and writing most languages.  The appearance of the body and breath are the invisible door to seeing and being this seamless, edgeless, oneness which already exists, here, now, as this perfect moment, this reality.

I believed deeply for more than 45 years that I was a separate being.  Suspend your doubts, at least a bit, and open to the possibility that Jesus the Christ, the Buddha, St.Teresa of Avila, Rumi, and others were not teaching separation of energy into individual bodies, but that energy is edgeless, infinite, and perfect…as it is here, now…regardless of what seems to be appearing.