Excerpt About Awakening

Appropriating the Capacities of True Nature

Thinking that realization happens because “I am stepping aside” is the same thing as thinking that realization happens because “I am meditating.” Both positions take awakening and illumination to be a result of something we are doing. This becomes problematic because it prevents reality from revealing the fact that true nature is always the illuminator. It is the light that illuminates. It is the awareness that discerns. It is the knowledge that knows. The self or the individual or the practitioner doesn’t have these powers, doesn’t have these capacities. And when we use the ordinary style of language—where the subject doing the action is always an “I” or a self—we are appropriating the capacities of true nature. As I said, from the nonhierarchical view, we see that reality does appear this way sometimes, but if we assume that this is the only way that reality is, we limit our experience of reality and miss all kinds of freedom and fun.

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