This aware principle,
Is already always aware.
Without lifting a finger,
It is effortlessly present.
Within this awareness,
A multitude of phenomena spontaneously arise and fall.
Conceptually we say ‘multitude of phenomena’,
But in reality there is just One Seamless Experience.
Whatever phenomena awareness is aware of,
We can call ‘objects’.
No object is this aware principle,
No object is awareness.
There are no actual separate objects,
Just the appearance of separate objects.
The mind, using concepts like a sword,
Carves up our Seamless Experience into apparent parts.
Let us examine this awareness,
Which is not separate from the objects it observes.
Where does it come from?
What is its nature?
Observe, no particular object of awareness is awareness itself:
An object itself cannot be aware,
The perceived cannot perceive.
Therefore awareness is not an object.
There is no knowledge of awareness:
Awareness cannot be seen, touched, smelt, heard or tasted.
In this sense it cannot be known,
But awareness’s existence is self-evident.
What is this awareness?
– I don’t know!
But I know awareness exists. How?
– Because I am aware!
Observe, there is no awareness of awareness itself,
Only awareness of objects,
(Or in Deep Sleep or Samadhi,
the awareness of the absence of objects),
The existence of awareness,
Is inferred from the presence (or absence) of objects.
So what is awareness but an idea,
Based on the assumption of a subject, a seer?
Awareness is a merely a concept,
Indistinguishable from the objects it is aware of.
Objects are awareness,
Awareness is simply the presence of objects
(or the presence of an absence of objects,
as in Deep Sleep or Samadhi).
‘Objects’ and ‘awareness’ are two names for our One Total Seamless Experience.
See this at once!
All these words,
Simply trying to describe,
What is already our direct experience of life,
Words simply point,
To the simplicity of this,
This which is so simple:
It is just our direct experience.
What we conceive to be awareness.
Is nothing other than our everyday experience of objects,
What is conceived to be the Absolute (ie. the Subject)
Is none other than the relative (ie. objects),
There is no object or subject,
No relative or absolute,
Just this, beyond words, beyond opposites.
There is only this,
And elusive of conceptualisation.
13 thoughts on “The nature of Awareness”
It seems that you distinguish between aware and unaware, and separate between relative and absolute. I think that causes some unnecessary confusion for you…
Yes, it can be confusing to arbitrarily conceptualise a subject-object duality but it can also be a useful interim step for some seekers in order to to break the habit of identification with the body-mind.
I respectfully disagree. Dualities only exist as abstract ideas – they can not be ‘conceptualized’ any further, nor do they need to. As end products of creation, all concepts point back their creator, which is us. Why confuse the seeker, instead of telling him that he is looking at his own ideas?
Our Awareness IS. It, like objects are part and parcel of what I call IS. I don’t have words for it, and although I have tried to define it, the best I come up with is, well IS. What is, just IS, and acceptance of this concept allows us to put down the mind sword, as it were, and just rest in that Awareness (sort of a state of ease really or understanding). Struggling to know what the IS, is, well that to me is existential hell. Alan Watts says that knowing ones place in this awareness is as futile as a needles eye trying to meet it’s own point. I do appreciate your words and the time you take to express your thoughts, and I am very excited to have the chance to exchange more thoughts with you. I am relieved to know that there are other people who know these things!
So rest in the IS, and the freedom that comes with that solace, to freely frolic as your own self, which was perfectly designed and created just to admire and utilize the massive abundance that you find everywhere, once the delusion of separation is shed! (It’s my plan for the weekend anyway 🙂 )
I’ve enjoyed reading your comment AS IS, and look forward to discussing this with you in the future! 🙂
This is beautiful, and helpful in trying to understanding awareness. Somehow you are able to point to something that is non conceivable. Thank You
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You’re welcome Ernie
Reblogged this on Gathering of Wisdom.
Thank you Tom. Your “Pointing” is brilliant, as always 🙏❤️
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You say that the existence of awareness is inferred from the presence or absence of objects, but awareness is self evident, just as existence is and in fact it seems that inference is only an afterthought.
What do you mean by awareness?
Absolutely brilliant pointer poem, thanks to the ONE!
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