Nonduality Following Soft Mantra Practice
I posted this earlier today in the excellent forum thread Awareness Watching Awareness – Q&A with LuminousBliss. I thought it was worth repeating here on the blog in case you’ve missed the great discussions we’ve been having on the forum this week, one of which is a fantastic guide to a TM-style mantra meditation written by Arpan. This meditation is definitely worth trying out and I’d love to hear your experiences with it.
I just wanted to mention that after practising the soft mantra method on Saturday morning I got some prolonged nonduality afterwards. We went down to Oxford to visit my aunt, uncle and cousins and their children. The Christmas tree was still up. With all the little kids running around, the Christmas decorations still up, and the smell of roast goose cooking in the air, the scene was very reminiscent of “Picard in the Nexus”:
- Very little verbal thought
- Three-dimensional richness with space emphasized; far clearer vision
- An “unrehearsed” nature to interactions — flowing, natural; solid, comfortable eye contact with everyone
- Unity, oneness — everyone and everything is part of “this” (“me”, though personal pronouns do not really fit with this state!)
- Sense of time essentially disappearing
- A feeling of “softness” to everything. Hard to describe, but things appeared like a dream
- A tangible stillness and quietness in it all.
I’ve had this state temporarily many times before but this time it survived quite robustly for a few hours when usually it breaks down more quickly.
I’ve known what I’m aiming for for quite some time (the first MDMA experience many years ago actually taught me most of the lessons of nonduality). It was nice to see that this could be triggered via a short mantra session, plus probably the preceding months of just I-feeling and other variants of Self-Inquiry.
The nondual state is such a vastly different way of living that trying to explain it to someone who has not experienced it is akin to describing colour to a blind man. Even really good descriptions can cause the issue of just inflating someone’s intellectual understanding (which is not really an understanding at all when placed next to the real experience).
I was hopeful to notice that, this time, my mind flagged up the nondual experience and afterwards thought something along the lines of, “That’s the way we want to live; we’re just tired of the other way, now.” I think these “It’s time…” mindsets are clues one is getting close; in the past the state is seen as something miraculous and is craved for after tasting it. Now it is seen more as a simple reality and, really, the only choice of state if one wishes to experience a satisfying way of life.