Q: Why are we here? What is the meaning of life?

A: The meaning of life is experience.

Q: Can you offer advice on how we can be in the world but not “of” the world?

A: This means that you live in this world, you incarnate in here, but you are also aware of: more than this reality, awareness itself, and what your spirit came here to do.  So you are aware of these three realities.

Incarnation allows our spirit to experience what it wants/needs to experience in material form, and awareness makes us automatically aware of this.  All three need to be attended to in order to be a fully integrated being.

Some religions and teachings focus on the materiality of this incarnation only. Others teach you to transcend this material world completely, that this world is just a dream.  Both have something missing from the big picture.

While it is true that you want to transcend this material world, it is more accurate to say that you want to transcend the idea that only the material world exists, to become aware of awareness itself, and to become aware of your intuition, which is a window into viewing what your spirit longs for, what it came here to do.  But how does one do this?

The first step is to become aware, to allow yourself to believe that there is more than just the material world.  This belief allows for the reality of awareness and spirit to enter into your conscious awareness.

Once you become aware of this expanded reality, focus on your awareness.  When you do this, you more consciously live your life, allowing you more of a bird’s eye view of what is happening so that you can act more in line with what your spirit has come here to do.

So, step one, open yourself up to awareness.  Step two, put your attention on awareness.  Step three, become fully aware of what you are doing.  Step four, you will naturally develop your intuition, one of its functions being to make you aware of the longings of the soul.  This is a continuing, meditative existence.  It is a continual process. In this way, you are living in the world, but are aware of much more.  You are in the world, but not of it.

As an aside, I think I should talk a little about the material world, intuition, and awareness.  

Open your eyes, and you see the material world.  It is what is.  That’s easy to see.  When you look at the world, what is looking is awareness.  It is happening automatically.  So the material world is what is, and awareness is what sees the material world.

If you focus on awareness, eventually you will also become aware of intuition.  What is intuition?  It is an internal, automatic knowingness that is in constant communication with you that is often overlooked because of our natural preoccupation with the material world.

To become more aware of intuition, focus on awareness.  This will make you more present in the moment to experience your existence more fully and automatically develop your awareness of intuition.

These three things — the material world, awareness, and intuition — seem pretty simple then.  The confusion comes about when the ego steps in.

While awareness makes you automatically aware of the material world and your intuition, sounding very simple, what your ego does is come along and comment on everything.  It makes so much noise and is present so much of the time that people think that their ego is what they are.

To help yourself out of this confusion, once again, concentrate on awareness.  This will allow you to see your ego for what it is, an automatic movement, based on past fear that occurs within your consciousness.

Once you see how automatic it is, and that it occurs within your consciousness, it becomes another thing, just like someone’s voice or a TV in the background, as you observe your life.

(continued from previous post)

There is meditation of ego consciousness.  This meditation is not best done in a quiet space, unlike the awareness meditation. It is analogous to a meditation on the inner parent consciousness.  It is actually best done while partaking in your everyday activities.

During this meditation, you watch your ego, as you go about your activities of daily living.  You watch yourself eat breakfast, you watch yourself read the news, you watch yourself watch TV, you watch yourself go to work.  In this way, you become very aware of your ego, and as you become more aware, you naturally align yourself more with your higher self, your witness consciousness.

This can become very automatic, and is a great meditation to perform every day.  Most people know about sitting down or lying to meditate, but do not practice this type of waking, day-to-day meditation, and, therefore, their sitting or lying meditation is confined to the meditation cushion instead of filling their daily lives.

In this way, you can perform sitting or lying meditation for years with little to no change.  Incorporate waking walking meditation into your life, consistently, every day, for a huge shift in consciousness.

It is important to note that the parent consciousness often does not accept the animal consciousness (inner child), or the adult consciousness (witness consciousness).  It is often the source of criticism, prejudices, and strife, both inwardly and outwardly.  Also, by not accepting its other parts, its keeps us stressed and limits our spiritual growth.

It is important to note that the parent consciousness (ego) is rooted in fear, and its biggest fear is losing control.  It sees accepting the adult and child consciousness as losing control, and this is why it is constantly at war with them.

There is also a meditation of the animal consciousness, or what is known as the “inner child.” This mediation is best done by watching what happens when you are stressed, upset, want something, and so on.  It is the part of you that wants what it wants, when it wants it, and if doesn’t get it, it will pout, be outwardly aggressive, inwardly aggressive, or passive aggressive.

It is important to watch this part of your consciousness when it arises, and not take action on its behalf.  Taking action based on the feelings of the inner child will most often result in unwanted repercussions later on or immediately in life.  This is also the most difficult meditation to perform.  To watch your animal consciousness in the heat of an argument is a very difficult and advanced thing to do.  

So, as you can see, all three meditations bring you back to the ultimate meditation, the meditation of consciousness.  Perform the inner adult (witness) meditation during times of peace, the inner parent (ego) meditation during your daily life, and the inner child (animal consciousness) meditation during times of stress.

All three will strengthen your higher self, or witness consciousness, and ultimately allow for a more peaceful, happier life.

Q: What is meditation? What is the best way to meditate?

A: First, it goes without saying that there are many, many different ways to meditate.  To determine the best way to meditate, you first have to decide what you are going for.

It’s best of course to be completely honest about this.  If you say that you are meditating on awareness, but the whole time you are concentrating on opening your chakras, your results are going to be very mixed up and inconsistent at best.

Are you trying to manifest money? A lover?  Are you trying to relax? Are you trying to open up the chakras, or open up to the siddhis? Or are you trying to become more aware of awareness itself?  I’m going to tell you about meditating on awareness.

First, most people in meditation circles are aware of meditations based on awareness.  This is best done in a relatively quiet space, where you are really doing nothing but being aware, aware of where consciousness takes you.  This is really a meditation of witness consciousness, or your higher self.  It is also akin to becoming aware of the inner adult persona, who is balanced, rational, and loves all parts of itself like its children.

This may become a meditation where you become very aware of the automatic nature of your ego, constantly making noise, trying to figure and refigure things out, in the past present, and the future.  It’s curious how the ego is constantly trying to rewrite and reconfigure events of the past, the present, and the future.

This meditation may also make you much more aware of your surroundings and/or the constant presence of peace which surrounds and envelops everything, like the air we breath.

But there are other meditations of awareness.  These are important because to be free of the dominating nature of the ego, we must be aware of and accept all parts of ourselves at all times, whether it be while it’s quiet, noisy, during the day, and during times of stress and conflict. Only by knowing all the parts of ourselves and accepting them can we be free.

Continued in next post.

Q: What exactly is the ego?  How do I free myself from it?  How do I get out from under its control?

A:  The ego is really a figment of our imagination.  It is a collection of thoughts about itself, the world, the way things should be, the way they are, and so on.  It’s the sum collection of our thought patterns.  It is not a real thing, and is always changing.  It is very real as a collection of thoughts, but very unreal in that if you don’t think of it, it takes a back seat to witness consciousness, which is more in line with what you really are.

How can it be real if you witness something, and your perspective changes, your ego changes?  The only thing that stays constant is the witness consciousness.  The ego is always changing, morphing into a thought process that tries to make sense of the world, because it sees itself separate from the world, out of control, and it’s scared.

The ego is always looking for security by imagining someway it can get (imaginarily) control of the world.  Really, our ego has no control of the world, what is happening in the world, or even how our ego is imagining things.  If there is any choice, and this is debatable, it is the choice to put our attention more on the witness, to let the ego and the world be as it is — to let the world and your ego be exactly as they are.

Now this does not mean to act out of the ego, to do what it tells you, or to be a victim of the world and its goings on.  It does not mean to be lethargic or passive in the world.  Quite the contrary.  When you choose to identify more from the witness, choices about action become much easier and automatic.  It’s like consciousness itself is running our life, making our decisions, rather than the ego.  We become perfectly aligned with what is, in perfect sync with life’s evolution.

By the way, when we are totally identified with the ego, the ego seems very big, it seems like a really big deal.  Everything is so dramatic.  However, the more you become aligned with witness consciousness, the smaller the ego looks, the less important it looks.  Eventually, you cannot even take the ego seriously.

Everyone has an ego.  The point is not to get rid of the ego or kill it off.  The goal is to recognize the ego and all of the ways it keeps you in the game.  This frees ourselves from the control of our ego, and lets us live and experience life.  This is the way to get out of the control of the ego.

Also, the ego is not “bad,” just as a thought that you need to go to the bathroom is not “bad.”  It’s just a collection of thoughts about its perceptions, being unaware of itself and the witness consciousness.   It’s an automatic thing.  Do you want to see how automatic it is?  Just sit down, in quiet, with no distractions.  I know most people think this is hard, but actually all distractions are manufactured by the ego.  In reality, peace, tranquility, and silence is the background in which our ego exists, and makes its noise.

So sit down quietly.  Notice all the thoughts that appear to the witness consciousness:  I’m not doing this right.  I should be working.  I should be making dinner.  I’m bored.  This isn’t working.  Where did these thoughts come from?  Are they automatic, or did you make a conscious decision to think them? The answer is obvious.  They occurred automatically.  If they occurred automatically, and you have no control over them, what responsibility for them do you have?  

You own them, they’re yours, but in reality, you don’t have control of them.  You’re not to “blame” for them.  The choice you have is what you pay attention to, and what you believe (although this is highly debatable as well).

When you choose to align with witness consciousness, you get to choose what to do with your ego’s thoughts.  Do you listen to them?  Do you act on them?  Do you even believe them?  The choice becomes yours.

Also, the more you align with witness consciousness, the more choices miraculously occur.  Witness consciousness allows in more choices for you to make, especially ones that seem “out of the box.”

Q: What should I do when someone is angry at me or treats me unkindly?

A:  The best thing to do is to try and put yourself in their shoes. What are they feeling, what is their perspective?  What are their past experiences in life, and how is this affecting their point of view now?  How are they viewing you?

This practice pulls you out of the duality of victim/victimizer, and puts you into the experience of compassion.  There’s always a reason why someone acts in a certain way, and usually it has very little to do with you.  Usually the person who is experiencing anger is acting reactively from their ego.  Don’t take it personally.

To take it personally puts you at odds with the person, which the person can consciously or unconsciously perceive, and keeps the drama going.  To see the person compassionately usually takes the energy out of the anger, and often times will take the person back, out of their angry state, and make them realize that their anger has very little to do with you.

Of course, to practice this takes time and dedication with identifying more with the watcher than your ego.  Be patient, and practice this consistently.  Often times it will resolve and issue.  If it does not, it will free your energy up to make much better decisions.

Should you confront this person about their anger?  Should you discontinue associating with this person because of their anger?  When you are watching from the witness instead of reacting from your ego, the choice will become clearer and clearer with time.

Q: Is there a value to our vocations other than the obvious worldly things they provide?  If one is restless in his vocation, is it worth pursuing another vocation?

A: Above all else, it’s most important what your intent is at any job you have or take.  This is what really matters.  That being said, jobs that give you the opportunity to serve mankind, animals, or the environment offer a better opportunity to open the heart, better than jobs that just require you to put in your work and get a paycheck.

What you do in life is always a reflection of your intent, your true intent, and who you are, who you identify yourself to be.

When one is restless in their vocation, it could be the possibility that the vocation no longer represents who one really is.  This will come across as a general uneasiness, or anxiety to the ego.

It could also, however, be a natural state of the ego, that is, the ego is marked by fear, continual action, seeking, problem finding and solving, and so on.  Sometimes it will find problems in a job when there is no problem.  The ego is just projecting its own uneasiness that it feels at all times onto a job that there is no problem with.  This may be especially the case with jobs that are relatively peaceful and do not require a lot of tasks at once.  This lack of continual action is fear inducing to the ego.

So the question becomes, if one is restless in their vocation, is it just normal ego consciousness? Or is it a sign that one’s soul is ready to move on to something more fitting to it?

Only consciousness can answer this, this is not a decision for the ego to make.  Take a step back into witness consciousness, and ask for your answer.  And be totally open to whatever answer comes.

When one is looking to move from one vocation to another, use the same process: take a step back and ask what vocation would better suit one’s life purpose. Be patient, and wait for the answer, or answers, to come.

Q: What is “manifestation”?

A: Manifestation is the ego’s word for recognizing what is already happening in the flow of life, and then trying to take ownership for it happening.

The true secret to “manifesting” is to step back into witness consciousness and see what is happening.  This is what people call being “psychic”.  A psychic sees what is happening, and what is most likely to happen in the near or distant future by observing the currents in life that are already happening, taking into account that things are interdependent on each other, and life tends to unfold in a cause and effect straight line appearance (more or less).

One thing leads to another, to another, and so on.  If one is more identified with the witness, who just watches things unfold, one gets totally into life, and the person seems to be manifesting things like crazy because what one wants and what is happening are one and the same.

In contrast, the ego is totally out of the flow of life, so to speak, and wants what it wants, and is in a way opposing life, or God, so to speak.  Therefore, it has trouble manifesting. If you want to manifest better, take a step back, look at what is happening, and be impartial.  You’ll realize that what you want is what is happening, and is what is manifesting.

Q: Why do I feel so helpless?

A: When we look at the nature of the ego, we see that it is always in motion, trying to fix problems that it perceives.  When we feel helpless, we feel that way because we can’t “fix” the supposed problem.

The way out of this is to step back and observe.  See what you can do right now in this moment, and do it.  Leave the uncontrollable variables up to God, the universe, whatever you want to call it.  Helplessness, which is a form of fear, is present because we lack trust in the process — the perfection — of our life unfolding.

In any situation, there are things we can, and things we can’t, control.  Fear and helplessness is the ego’s attempt to usurp God in his control of the situation.  It is basically a lack of trust and faith.  Replace fear and helplessness with trust in God’s perfection and you’ll be at peace.

Another way of looking at it is to realize that the ego thinks it exists, when really it is just a collection of thoughts, ideas, prejudices, judgments, and so on.  Really, it has no power; the real power comes from consciousness.  When one feels helpless, it is in touch with its own fear of non-existence.

The way out of this is to step back, observe the ego and its true nature, and have faith in God and the process of consciousness unfolding.

Q: Are my pursuits in trying to start my own business another attempt at my ego to survive and something I should surrender now, or are these pursuits necessary for me to continue in order to live a more spiritual life?

A: You already know the answer to your question; the ego is always trying to survive, that it’ll use any chance it gets.  But that it doesn’t matter near as much what you do, but rather, where your consciousness is concentrated.  Is it totally identified with your persona and its actions? Or is it gradually becoming more identified with the awareness that it is?  Events come and go, life flows through you. What matters is what you identify with.  This is the choice that we make in every second.

Q: How can we escape the never-ending circuit of repetitive negative thoughts?

A: First off, remember that thoughts are just that, they are thoughts about reality.  They are not reality, they are just thoughts.  You could have the opposite thought about the same thing or situation, depending on other thoughts at that time.  So you must realize the “reality” you see is really just perception, it’s true to a greater or lesser extent, but it’s still not reality.

So after you realize that thoughts are just thoughts, you see that they have no power in and of themselves.  Your belief in them brings them their power.  That’s why trying to change your thinking may help make your thoughts more pleasant, but they are still reinforcing that this or that thought is true, and that you believe it.

The real answer is to watch your thoughts, to let them be there non-judgmentally.  Just let them come and go.  This opens the psychic doorway to witness consciousness.  It takes time, persistence, and faith.  Every time you see yourself believing a thought, any thought, bring yourself back to the consciousness that watches all, all thoughts, all happenings.

Negative thoughts then are just seen for what they are, negative thoughts, the opposite of positive thoughts, but not reality.  These negative loops then lose their power over your psyche, or mind, and they gradually wind down.  Remember, to try and fight them or change them acknowledges them, and their power over you, which reinforces them.

By the way, if you master this art of observing in the course of your lifetime, you are doing pretty well.

After writing all of this, maybe the first thought you should ask is, do I want these thoughts to stop?  What happens then?  What happens if all thoughts stop?  Since the ego is a thought form, and it is characterized by motion, reaction, and action, stopping is equivalent to death.  That is why when one practices witness consciousness, it can be very disturbing and anxiety producing.  Your ego feels its own death approaching.

Basically, it boils down to what you want to grow in the garden of your mind, if you want to grow fearful thoughts, believe your fearful thought, think other thoughts about your fearful thoughts, act on your fearful thoughts.  This will make them grow big, scary, and powerful, but only to you, the prisoner of your own mind.

Conversely, if you want witness conscious to grow, identify with it, watch it watch, watch it not react, see how it lives out of the flow of life, rather than the ego and fear.  The answer is to fully take part in this process.