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   by Peter Holleran

   "Against boredom, even the gods struggle in vain." - Nietzsche

   "The Holy Land, flowing with milk and honey, is within us but the wilderness that we have to cross before reaching it is within us too." - Paul Brunton (PB)

   “There is an unspoken law of meditation that before one can enter the state of real bliss one has to pass the gate of neutrality, absorbing and integrating the essence of unqualified emptiness: disidentification from experiencing, non-evaluation of experiences, non-doing of being, non-dwelling upon phenomena and non-abidance upon the beyond. To enter reality, a meditator has to establish himself in a state beyond pleasant or unpleasant, blissful or boring. He has to be unconcerned with that which he is experiencing to truly become one with it. Only then is he granted the impersonal bliss of existence.” - anadi (1)

   "The very facts of repetition, of struggling on and on and of endurance and perseverance, in spite of boredom and despair and complete lack of conviction are really crucial. They are not important by themselves, but the sincerity [i.e., faith] behind them is all-important...You begin by letting thoughts flow and watching them. The very observation slows down the mind till it stops altogether. Once the mind is quiet, keep it quiet. Don't get bored with peace, be in it, go deeper into it." - Nisargadatta Maharaj (I AM THAT)

   We are speaking here of a stage in one's evolution - also a foundation of mature practice - when one crosses the gap between conditioned selfhood and the true life. It is a ‘neutral zone,’ a 'twilight' zone, in a sense a 'dead' zone, where the ego is worn thin and at the precipice of surrendering itself in the soul to paradoxically gain all. Through grace one enters his absence fully to emerge in the divine presence. It is a stage, a necessary passage(s) spoken of in various ways in many traditions, of which we will in this essay offer a number of examples to illustrate this important point.

   Irena Tweedie writes:

   “This is absolute security, I said to myself, but to reach it one has the traverse the no-man’s land; one has to wade through the morass of insecurity, where there is no firm foothold of any kind, a sort of mental fog, and one cannot see even the ground under one’s feet.” (Daughter of Fire, p. 284-285)

   This is the gist, but in a more complex manner, psychoanalyst Hubert Benoit describes the condition from a Zen perspective:

   “When St. John of the Cross passes beyond his mystical compensation, when he detaches himself from the image of ‘God’ after this image has been as far as possible rendered impersonal, he does not feel attached to the image ‘Ego’ from which the image ‘God’ drew its apparent Reality; he does not feel attached to anything. He no longer feels anything; it is the ‘Night’ in which nothing exists any longer in connexion with what can be felt or thought. But there is still an ultimate attachment to the Ego which links together all the powers of the being, an ultimate and invisible compensation. It is passing-beyond this invisible compensation which is the veritable detachment, total and instantaneous. To the Night succeeds what St. John of the Cross calls the theopathic state, that which Zen calls Satori.” (2)

   As pointed out by Abbot Zenkei Shibayama:

   "The aim of Zen training is to die while alive, that is, to actually become the self of no-mind, and no-form, and then to revive as the True Self of no-mind and no-form. In Zen training, therefore, what is most important is for one to revive from the abyss of unconsciousness. Zen training is not the emotional process of just being in the state of oneness, nor is it just to have the "feeling" of no-mind. Prajna wisdom (true wisdom) has to shine out after breaking through the extremity of the Great Doubt, and then still further training is needed so that one can freely live the Zen life and work in the world as a new man." (3)

   It should be pointed out that in general this particular form of “Great Doubt” is non-objective in nature. Benoit tells us that in the moments actually preceding true satori one is not necessarily in deep despair; the dark night of the soul, or its sufficient equivalency, is behind him now:

   “The Western mind often has difficulty in understanding the term “Great Doubt” which Zen uses to indicate the inner state which immediately precedes satori. It thinks that this Great Doubt should be the acme of uncertainty, of uneasiness, therefore of distress. It is exactly the opposite. Let us try to see this point clearly. Man comes into the world with a doubt concerning his ‘being’, and this doubt dictates all his reactions to the outer world. Although I do not often realise it, the question ‘Am I?’ is behind all my endeavors; I seek a definite confirmation of my ‘being’ in everything that I aspire to. As long as this metaphysical question is identified in me with the problem of my temporal success, as long as I debate this question within Manifestation, distress dwells in me on account of my temporal limitation; for the question so posed is always menaced with a negative reply. But, in the measure in which my understanding deepens and in which my imaginative representation of the universe is subtilised, the identification of my metaphysical doubt with the eventuality of my temporal defeat falls asunder; my distress decreases. My question concerning my ‘being’ is purified; its manifested aspect wears thin; in reality it is not reduced but becomes more and more non-manifested. At the end of this process of distillation the doubt has become almost perfectly pure, it is ‘Great Doubt’, and at the same time it has lost all its distressing character; it is at once the acme of confusion and the height of obviousness, obviousness without formal object, having tranquility and peace. ‘Then the subject has the impression that he is living in a palace of crystal, transparent, vivifying, exalting and royal’; and at the same time he is ‘like an idiot, like an imbecile’. The famous and illusory question ‘Am I?’, in purifying itself abolishes itself, and I shall at last escape from its fascination not in a satisfying solution of the problem, but in the ability to see that no problem ever existed.” (4)

   And further:

   “The further a man is, in his emotive states, from satori...the more intensely will he experience the nostalgia of its attainment in whatever way he may envisage it; the nearer a man approaches satori...the less strongly does he feel his nostalgia for its attainment. On the verge of satori, in the moments which preceed it, all nostalgia of its attainment disappears; then, for lack of any nostalgia, he who attains to satori does not feel it at all as an attainment; he can say, with Hui-neng, ‘There is no attainment, there is no liberation’, liberation only existing in the eyes of him who is not liberated.” (5)

   Christian mystic Madame Guyon approaches the subject from another angle:

   The soul, after many a redoubled death, expires at last in the arms of Love; but she is unable to perceive these arms...Then, reduced to Nought, there is found in her ashes a seed of immortality, which is preserved in these ashes and will germinate in its season. But she knows not this; and does not expect ever to see herself living again....and the soul which is reduced to the Nothing, ought to dwell therein; without wishing, since she is now but dust, to issue from this state, nor, as before, desiring to live again. She must remain as something which no longer exists: and this, in order that the Torrent may drown itself and lose itself in the Sea, never to find itself in its selfhood again; and that it may become one and the same thing with the Sea.” (6)

   St. John of the Cross adds an aspect of this state from the point of view one emerging from a dark night of the soul:

   "For this night is gradually drawing the spirit away from its ordinary and common experience of things and bringing it nearer the Divine sense, which is a stranger and an alien to all human ways. It seems now to the soul that it is going forth from its very self, with much affliction. At other times it wonders if it is under a charm or spell, and it goes about marvelling at the things it sees and hears, which seem to it very strange and rare, though they are the same that it was accustomed to experience aforetime. The reason of this is that the soul is now becoming alien and remote from common sense and knowledge of things, in order that, being annihilated in this respect, it may be informed with the Divine." (7)

   Even in a mystical path such as Sant Mat, it is said that there is a stage called Maha Sunn, a void of darkness between the created and Uncreated realms, wherein the Soul, devoid of mind and matter, and all of the sheaths or coverings except the anandamaya kosha, is said to be able to go no further under her own Light; to pass from objectivity to the purely subjective realms of Sat Lok she requires the help of a master of the Beyond to carry her through. This is a ‘neutral zone’ between the relative bliss of the higher inner regions and the pure bliss of the divine dimension. It is noted that on this path one is advised to pay attention solely to the light, the sound, or the Master's Radiant form, in order to not be sidetracked into the many inner realms of 'objectivity', and go quickest to the final goal, which, in truth, should be present from the beginning as the tacit insight or subjective 'light' of the I Am principle. In other words, 'awakeness' or rock-solid love and devotion is the best protection and preparation for accessing inner regions. Actually, this neutral zone is present before any transition. One must, as it were, rest in the 'absence of the negative' for the 'presence of the positive' to show itself.

   Whatever the tradition, much patience and perseverance are required to reach this stage of non-abidance, awakened passivity, and alertness. de Lubicz states:

   “But first the disciple must pass through the complexity in order to exhaust the various possibilities until the awakening of the consciousness which leads toward simplicity: would he be able to bear the intermediate phase between his dream and reality.”

   Paul Brunton describes this cocoon-like state in some detail:

   "Is insight achieved gradually or suddenly, as the Zen Buddhists claim? Here again both claims are correct, if taken together as parts of a larger and fuller view. We have to begin by cultivating intuitive feelings. These come to us infrequently at first and so the process is a gradual and long one. Eventually we reach a point, a very advanced point, where the ego sees its own limitation, perceives its helplessness and dependence, realizes that it cannot lift itself up into final illuminations. It should then surrender itself wholly to the Overself and cast its further development on the mercy and Grace of the power beyond it. It will then have to go through a waiting period of seeming inactivity, spiritual stagnation, and inability to feel the fervour of devotion which it formally felt. This is a kind of dark night of the soul. Then slowly, it begins to come out of this phase, which is often accompanied by mental depression and emotional frustration, into a higher phase where it feels utterly resigned to the will of God or destiny, calm and peaceful in the sense of accepting that higher will and not in any joyous sense, patiently waiting for the time when the infinite wisdom will bring it what it once sought so ardently but what it is now as detached from as it is detached from worldly ambitions. After this phase there will come suddenly unexpectedly and in the dead of night, as it were, a tremendous Realization of the egoless state, a tremendous feeling of liberation from itself as it has known itself, a tremendous awareness of the infinitude, universality, and intelligence of life." (8)

   An important aspect of true meditation or contemplation is a passage through profound boredom. PB doesn’t state this directly in the passage above. Anthony Damiani, however, said about meditation (and I speak from memory) that “it is very, very boring. Every day the same thoughts, again and again; yes, it’s very boring.”

   This experience of boredom is not dissimilar to that of doubt, discomfort, anxiety, or fear. It is essentially the same existential state of ourselves prior to reaching the natural state, call it satori, being, the absolute, the ultimate, freedom, the self, the soul, or the other shore. In the usual life, an unconscious and thus infrequently felt ‘hole’ at the center of ones being is constantly covered over with myriad distractions. That is one of the traditional reasons for the recommendation of sitting practice, to cut away the distractions and reveal the yawning chasm that apparently, from this side, separates us from reality. It need not become clear only in meditation, for the grace of a master and ones life when truly met may do the same. This zone of detachment (from this world and the next), fear, and ennui is the prelude to a new life. Boredom, doubt, and discomfort, and their deeper roots of fear, sorrow, and anger are the primary qualities of the unenlightened, and distractions are myriad to avoid feeling them. anadi speaks in depth specifically about boredom and its true meaning:

   “Boredom is an interesting state of mind. It inspires us to act, but never allows us to rest in contentment. We get bored when there is nothing to do and when we lose interest in what we were doing. The deepest kind of boredom, however, is boredom with being. Due to the shallow nature of the human personality, to ‘just be’ is a tedious and dull experience. it is not the soul that is bored with being, but the mind, for the mind lives through movement and is unable to rest...The monotony of being is simply intolerable.”

   “Some meditators believe that they do not get bored in meditation because they are having such a ‘deep experience’. In reality, however, they have not yet begun to meditate. Unless one has passed through the experience of utter existential boredom, one has not entered true meditation. Boredom cannot be by-passed; it must be experienced fully before one can move beyond it...The degree to which we experience boredom or bliss reflects the depth of our absorption in reality.”

   “Boredom, in its essence, is the pure suffering of existing as a separate consciousness. We confront the most acute sense of separation when faced with inactivity, because action serves as the primary distraction to our claustrophobic self-consciousness...The best way out of boredom is to recognise the profound value of being. However, as we cannot appreciate what we do not experience, an unconscious person who lacks any real experience of being has no way to relate to the positive essence of boredom. What the average meditator translates as ‘being’ is but the frail touch of each moment, a vague reverberation of the now...When we reach a significant degree of absorption and the mind surrenders, boredom begins to dissolve into the bliss of being...To transform boredom is to awaken a profound sense of endurance within the experience of the impersonal void of each now. As boredom arises in each now, one surrenders within it. One has to accept and befriend boredom before it can be transmuted and absorbed by its source.”

   “It is a common experience that the moment a new layer of depth within the inner state is reached, the sense of boredom is temporarily suspended, for the observer feels tangible bliss as a result of having shifted beyond his previous state. However, as time goes by, the novelty of the experience wears off. No matter what depth the observer reaches, his initial fascination and excitement inevitably wain and he gets bored all over again. To go beyond boredom through the medium of the spiritual path is not to seek new states, but to resolve boredom’s primal cause, our separateness. As we mature we realize that boredom cannot be overcome by intensifying our inner experience, for it is not a reflection of the lack of depth of our state, but of our inability to merge. Only when the observer surrenders and becomes one with the inner
[i.e., ‘non-objective’] realm can boredom be dissolved, for he is not only the victim of boredom, but its cause. It is our disappearance into reality that ultimately takes us beyond boredom, for it liberates us from the very one who is subject to both boredom and its absence.” (9)

   An image that might be used to describe an aspect of these transition states (whether gross, subtle, or spiritual) is having become neutralized with regard to desire. It is a state where longing for God, enlightenment or Self-realization have led us to a state where the still-present 'outward-going' desires or tendencies have been weakened, but are not gone. We reach a place where the higher wisdom and aspiration serve to balance, and so neutralize, those desires that remain. We are then in limbo, perhaps even haunted by both leanings, unable to align fully with either. It can be a state in which the presence of the higher reality and longing 'spoils' the remaining ego-desires, be they high or low, undermining blindly enjoying them, or even suspending their energy. Yet the presence of these same desires, which we are not yet ready to release and become free, still serves to obscure our awareness of, and identification more fully with, the deeper truth. Our old desires have greatly died, so our life-force to engage worldly, mystical, or spiritual motivations has substantially weakened, but we are not yet adequately reborn in a new identity, with new motivation, new Life, new vitality. So we may feel lifeless, bored, dead, unengaged, suspended, neutralized. These transition states occur at all levels and across many traditions. A sense of 'night' preceeds the earlier stages; neutrality the more advanced ones. It is really a normal phenomena and to be expected.

   PB speaks of two levels of this phenomena of night or neutrality. In the initial stages, he says:

   "The mere absence of thoughts is not necessarily presence of Reality-Consciousness."

   "The period of active effort is at an end; the period of passive waiting now follows it. Without any effort on his part and without any mental movement of his own, the grace draws him up to the next higher stage and miraculously puts him there where he has so long and so much desired to be. mark well the absence of effort at this stage, how the whole task is taken out of his hands."

   "Without the quality of self-imposed patience, the student cannot go far in this quest. If he has only a tourist mentality and nothing more, if he seeks to collect in one sweeping, surface glance all the truths which have taken mankind lifetimes of effort and struggle to perceive, he will succeed only in collecting a series of self-deceptive impressions which may indeed provide him with the illusion of progress but will lead him nowhere in the end."

   "He has developed the capacity to open the door of his inner being. He has reached the stillness which envelops its threshold. But this is only a beginning, not the end. He has now to pass beyond it and find out what the light itself holds for him."

   For the advanced practitioner, faced with a situation similar in nature, yet in actuality a penultimate transition, he gives this advice:

   "If he is willing to accept this emptiness with all the annihilation of self that goes with it, he will succeed in passing the hardest of ordeals and the most rigorous of tests."

   "Without dramatic happening or sensational incident, the mind slips at long last into the Great Silence."

   "Those who find that beyond the Light they must pass through the Void, the unbounded emptiness, often draw back affrighted and refuse to venture farther. For here they have naught to gain or get, no glorious spiritual rapture to add to their memories, no great power to increase their sense of being a co-worker with God. Here their very life-blood is to be squeezed out as the price of entry; here they must become the feeblest of creatures."

   It is important to note that this phenomenon applies to many different qualities besides just boredom, and that there may be many such passages. One may experience an unprecedented breakthrough of clarity, and then be plunged back into one's human shadow material and apparent unenlightenment, even repeatedly, like a sword that is to be tempered is thrust into the fire for a time and then cooled, only to be put bck into the fire again in order to be made into something excellent. All of this is only Consciousness clarifying and integrating its own essential nondual nature. It is to be expected and does not mean one is doing something wrong. Like a Backdraft, in seemingly dull moments, assuming that one has maintained diligence to the task, the fire of Being is only gathering momentum for the next step forward. Again, one needs patience. A quote from the book, Postcards from the Edge, "instant gratification takes too long," is worth remembering!

   Even a proper and enlightened view of practice will not necessarily bypass this metamorphosis, although it may prepare the ground. A good example of such a disposition is given by the venerable Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche from the perspective of the Dzogchen tradition:

   “The everyday practice of Dzogchen in simply to develop a complete carefree acceptance, an openness to all situations without limit. We should realize openness as the playground of our emotions and relate to people without artificiality, manipulation or strategy. We should experience everything totally. Never withdrawing into ourselves as a marmot hides in its hole. This practice releases tremendous energy which is usually constricted by the process of maintaining fixed reference points. Referentiality is the process by which we retreat from the direct experience of everyday life. Being present in the moment may initially trigger fear. But by welcoming the sensation of fear with complete openness, we cut through the barriers created by habitual emotional patterns. When we engage in the practice of discovering space, we should develop the feeling of opening ourselves out completely to the entire universe. We should open ourselves with absolute simplicity and nakedness of mind. This is the powerful and ordinary practice of dropping the mask of self-protection. We shouldn't make a division in our meditation between perception and field of perception. We shouldn't become like a cat watching a mouse. We should realize that the purpose of meditation is not to go 'deeply into ourselves' or withdraw from the world. Practice should be free and non-conceptual, unconstrained by introspection and concentration.”

   "There is no need to correct anything. Since everything that arises is simply the play of the mind as such, there is no unsatisfactory meditation and no need to judge thoughts as good or bad. Therefore we should simply sit. Simply stay in your own place, in your own condition just as it is. Forgetting self-conscious feelings, we do not have to think 'I am meditating'. Our practice should be without effort, without strain, without attempts to control or force and without trying to become 'peaceful'. If we find that we are disturbing ourselves in any of these ways, we stop meditating and simply rest or relax for a while."

   Rinpoche almost makes it sound easy, but people may forget that he had excellent teachers, spent fifteen years alone in Himalayan caves and six hours every morning for years afterwards in meditation, and no doubt encountered boredom, doubt, and every feeling and state imaginable in the course of his practice, like Milarepa and countless adepts before him, and passed through them with great endurance. That must certainly be how he earned his beautiful smile. Thus, there is a two-edged sword. On the one hand, getting up from sitting practice, or removing oneself from a situation in life, whenever one feels disturbed is a sure way to avoid inevitable feelings of boredom, doubt, and discomfort; on the other hand, seeing oneself and everything as already perfect, already divine, and noticing when one falls away from that acceptance, allows getting off the mat to be an act of self-compassion, to regain 'sound mind.' In this sense, his advice is a counterpoint to trying too hard. It amounts to one having faith in oneself.

   Jean Klein said:

   “The longing to search for life in many directions, to discover your true being, comes from an inner urge to find the truth, the inner urge to discover yourself. If you really seriously search in all directions you become exhausted and speaking psychologically, bankrupt. You feel completely helpless: you are in despair; you no longer know where to turn; all streets are dead ends; your thinking can no longer help. This crisis is the most important moment in your life. You come into a state of complete not-knowing. You have no hope or expectations anymore. It is a rare occasion in which the thinking is confronted with its limitations, and because it is useless as such, the thinking gives up, then you are open, open for nothing, only open for openness. This openness is the threshold of your true nature. Remain there in not knowing and you will see what happens.” (13)

   Sri Nisargadatta speaks of a sincerity that is of supreme importance:

   “The very facts of repetition, of struggling on and on and of endurance and perseverance, in spite of boredom and despair and complete lack of conviction are really crucial. They are not important by themselves, but the sincerity [i.e., faith] behind them is all-important.” (I AM THAT)

   The great Plotinus beautifully wrote:

   “We must not run after it, but fit ourselves for the vision and then wait tranquilly for its appearance, as the eye waits on the rising of the sun, which in its own time appears above the horizon - out of the ocean, as the poets say - and gives itself to our sight.” (14)

   PB has many inspiring passages on the qualities required and invoked in this process:

   "Having worked to the utmost on himself, but finding that a stable spiritual consciousness still eludes him, he has no recourse except to submit his further development to a higher power than his own will and then wait and let it work upon him."

   "It may be helpful for him to try a new angle on his spiritual problems. This is to stop striving and to wait with surrendered will for the higher power. This power is there within him and without him and knows his need. Let him stop being tense, stop working and striving. Let him even stop studying for realization of this presence, but let him just ask prayerfully for it to take hold of him."

   "The Inner Being will rise and reveal Himself just as soon as the ego becomes sufficiently humbled, subdued, surrendered. The assurance of this is certain because we live forever within the Love of God."

   "Within his heart, he may call or keep nothing as his own, not even his spirituality. If he really does not want to cling to his ego, he must cling to nothing else. He is to have no sense of inner greatness, no distinct feeling of having attained some high degree of holiness."

   "Once he grasps that the higher part of his being not only knows immeasurably more than he what is good for him, but also possesses infinitely more power than he does to bring it about, he is ready to enter upon the surrendered life."

   "He who puts himself at the Overself's disposal will find that the Overself will in turn put him where he may best fulfil his own divine possibilities."

   "The same power which has brought him so far will surely carry him through the next phase of his life. he must trust it and abandon anxieties, as a passenger in a railroad train should abandon his bag by putting it down on the floor and letting the train carry it for him."

   "The universal power will sustain him simply because he has surrendered himself to it. Failure in the true sense, which, however, is not always the apparent one, will then be impossible."

   "It is not within the power of man to finish either the purificatory work or its illuminating sequel: his Overself, by its action within his psyche, must bring that about. This activating power is grace."

   "We must exert our own will and strength to prepare the way for, and make us receptive to, the divine grace. Thus the one complements the other; both are necessary parts of the World-Idea."

   "Just as the exhausted athlete may with some patience find what he calls his second wind, so the man whose thought, feeling, will, and aspiration are exhausted may find his interior resource, but this requires patience and passivity. The need to hope, to wait, and to be passive is the most important of all."

   "The Overself's grace will be secretly active within and without him long before it shows itself openly to him."

   "The grace may be barely felt, may come on slowly for many months, so that when he does become aware of its activity, the final stage is all he sees and knows."

   This is an archtypal passage, applicable on several maturing levels. As Alan Cohen put it, "the caterpillar must surrender to the cocoon before it can become a butterfly," and, "we have left our history, but not yet claimed our Destiny." (15) Hilda Charleton used to refer to this as being in the 'corridor between two rooms'. Much patience is required because, as Paramhansa Yogananda said:

   "The world is a big mental institution." (!)

   Or, "see what happens," advised Papaji. No more to do but see what happens. Live with the wisdom of insecurity, being nothing, wanting nothing, and knowing nothing. Just wait, alert, expecting nothing, until one is mysteriously pulled through, leaving 'no traces' behind.

   There is a positive side to the negative state of mere waiting, which we haven't mentioned, and that is what Robert Adams and Sri Nisargadatta said about seeing moments when there is 'nothing wrong anymore.' Not necessarily to say, 'everything is okay,' but that 'nothing is wrong.' Putting it in this way eliminates the urge to do anything or to move from ones immovable state. It is good to know about such moments. They are usually subtle enough not to intrude upon the inner alchemy. Of course there is no arguing with happiness either:

   “My life has no purpose, no direction, no aim, no meaning, and yet I'm happy. I can't figure it out. What am I doing right?”
     - Snoopy, from "Peanuts"

   anadi concludes regarding the ‘neutral’ or ‘dead zone’ beyond affectivity and expectancy, the last stage of the ‘passage through the wilderness’ referred to in all paths:

   “Our experience of boredom evolves as we come closer to our original absence and realize the emptiness of the self. As our abidance in reality deepens, our sense of boredom becomes relaxed and transparent. It no longer creates restless energies and aggitation, but reflects the absolute patience of existence.”

   “A neutral quality experienced in meditation shows that one abides in reality, for one has moved beyond the mind; yet it also indicates that the experiencer is still separated from the space of the abidance. Neutrality can be said to be the closest experience to reality for a separate experiencer; beyond it, the experiencer is no more. The moment the gap between the experiencer and the inner realm is bridged by his absorption, the true nature of reality divulges itself as pure bliss. We are not speaking of the kind of bliss that one can relate to, or get used to or become bored with, for it is not experienced through our presence, but through our absence...Once we have crossed over the neutral dimension of meditation, we begin to disappear into reality and merge with the supreme bliss of the self. The bliss of meditation is innate to the divine realm of the source - it is uncaused, unoriginated, unbecome - it just is. To taste the timeless bliss of being through the consciousness of the soul is to merge with the unborn heart of the Beloved.”

   As this bliss is inconceivable and beyond human imagination, and experienced in a state of halcyon peace, PB prefers to refer to it by a different name:

   "I dislike the word "bliss" - so often used in translating ananda. Surely "beatitude" is the word measuring more clearly the experienced feeling." (17)

   “Were the glorious realization of the Overself devoid of any feeling, then the realization itself would be a palpable absurdity. It would not be worth having. The grand insight into reality is certainly not stripped of fervent delight and is surely not an arid intellectual concept. It is rightly saturated with exalted emotion but it is not this emotion alone. The beatific feeling of what is real is quite compatible with precise knowledge of what is real; there is no contradiction between them.” (18)

   Beatitude - supreme blessedness and happiness - and knowledge, is what is realized: a glorious destiny awaiting us all.


1. anadi, book of enlightenment, www.anaditeaching.com, 2011), p. 97
2. Hubert Benoit, Zen and the Psychology of Transformation: The Supreme Doctrine (Rochester, VT: Inner Traditions International, 1990), p. 220
3. Abbot Zenkei Shibayama, A Flower Does Not Talk (Tokyo, Japan: Charles E. Tuttle Company, 1970) p. 46-47)
4. Benoit, op. cit., p. 230-231
5. Ibid, p. 121
6. Madame Guyon, Les Torrents, pt. i. cap. viii. Cited in: Underhill, Mysticism (New York: New American Library, 1974
7. E. Allison Peers, trans. The Dark Night of the Soul (Garden City, New York: Image/Doubleday, 1959), p. 123
8. Paul Brunton, The Notebooks of Paul Brunton (Burdett, New York: Larson Publications, 1988), , Vol. 16, Part 1, 2.55
9. anadi, op. cit., p. 76-78
10. Brunton, op. cit., Vol. 15, Part 1, 7.23, 7.243, 7.244, 7.284
11. Ibid, 8.33, 8.34, 8.59
12. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche,Dzogchen Practice in Everyday Life, p.
13. Jean Klein, source misplaced
14. Plotinus, Enneads, 5.5.8
14a. Brunton, op. cit., Vol. 12, Part 2, 4.20, 4.130, 4.139, 4.140, 4.141, 4.144, 4.174, 4.196, 5.110, 5.160, 5.164, 5.271. 5.272
15. Alan Cohen, The Dragon Doesn't Live Here Anymore (New York: Fawcett Books, 1981, 1990), p. 184, 245
16. anadi, op. cit., p. 77, 97
17. Brunton, op. cit., Vol. 12, Part 2, 5.301
18. Ibid, Vol.13, Part 2, 4.22