Inquiry: The Power Tool!
The most powerful technique for change
While not stated in the video Inquiry is as powerful in your spiritual development as Thor's hammer is to bring his foe into submission. The grand key is Presence "that allows everything to Be as it is" to assist healing and alignment. This reduces the inner war, pillar No2, as it includes All of You. In reality there is no foe, which is how we treat these parts of ourselves when they result in a limitation or undesirable outcome.
Something labeled bad, wonderful or the spiritual seeker insult of "oh that's your ego" is a merely incorrect perception from God's view. Presence is the true acceptance, the true unconditional love. When you consciously fall into step 4 of Correct Presence Practice the Nothingness, then that is Agape, the deepest form of unconditional love, God's Love. Hence orientation of pillar No1 Correct Presence Practice is you starting at the destination.
Inquiry & Presence
together heal the 'problem' fastest
Presence allows the resisting belief, psychological part, behaviour pattern and related emotions to be seen, felt and heard. This is required so they can come back into the alignment of the whole You. Inquiry is the method that brings these behaviours, emotions and beliefs to this place of Presence so they can be transformed into a deeper understanding and greater Presence.
To get the most out of your self-initiated inner work or coaching sessions firstly you must be activating Correct Presence Practice as best as you can. Correct Presence Practice is pillar No1 in the Enlightenment framework for this very reason as this is the end and the start of any inner journey. As explained in the Orientation video, start at the destination. Depending on what non-Presence causing aspect you are working on will have an impact on what of the 4 steps to Presence you can enter easily.
The layering within in the inner body, step 2 of Presence Practice, is where all the answers to any issue, belief, behaviour or psychological part reside. Step 3 Presence and your ability to rest and allow the contents of the disturbance to be felt and express itself with your allowing Presence is the healing balm. Your Presence is your whole you. Just like a 5 year old child your unconscious mind just wants to be heard and listened to. This is the process of Inquiry, and this is how you heal your separation so all of you comes back to the wholeness of Self, your Presence.
As you are now more Present it amplifies the impact of change in your life as it dissolves more layers within you. Once you have used Inquiry successfully your capacity to be in Presence will grow and deepen, especially in situations that triggered that reaction in prior times. The issue that you used Inquiry on will no longer reduce your consciousness down to that limited part and its less desirable behaviours that it once did. Instead you will be in full consciousness and thus have a choice about your behaviours and actions.
If Inquiry is done from the mind only the outcome will only be at the level of mind, leaving the emotional levels intact. The mental level will re-fill with the old beliefs again due to the emotional aspect being unresolved. If done at the emotional level without Presence, with lots of crying and catharsis, it will only release at the emotional level. If done in Presence the catharsis leads to full surrender with the resulting stillness or peace where the issue once was. Catharsis without Presence may even embed the emotional trauma even deeper if the surrender has not occurred. Thus Inquiry has to be done from the place of Presence so all levels (mental, emotional, physical and spiritual) are integrated at the same time. Without Presence any incomplete layer can re-activate all the other layers.
Another view to Inquiry is that it can be from two places:
1. Presence, which is what you truly are. Thus it embraces all of you (pillar No2).
2. The ego or psychological place, also known as your personality, is your me, which is limited by your current levels of egoic consciousness.
Inquiring from your personality, the me, who owns things and has opinions, is only a small aspect of what you are. Thus it cannot touch all the layers of your personality and spiritual make-up that constitute the complete human life form.
Inquiry based in Presence is where the bulk of your inner garbage can be processed and transformed. The Basic Inquiry method and the Advanced Inquiry method in this site follow the typical path that most healing and counseling paradigms follow. The difference is that with this method the focus is from the place of Presence first as it is pillar No1. The structure of Enlightenment always starts at pillar No1. That is the beginning, middle and end of your whole essence. Hence once in that state of awareness you can work with all of you, pillar No2, most effectively.
The separated aspects of you (pillar No2) have limited resources to assist you. These separated aspects cannot tap into the totality of all your consciousness. However these disconnected aspects of consciousness have the remarkable power to hijack your consciousness and result in behaviours and moods that are limited, are not resourceful and feel unpleasant.
Non Duality or Advaita Vedānta inquiry
The second 'cosmic' form of inquiry
Assistance with developing your Inquiry skills
To know what you are, you must first investigate and know what you are not.
Discover all that you are not;
body, feelings, thoughts, time, space, this or that, nothing, concrete or abstract, which you perceive can be you.
The very act of perceiving shows that you are not what you perceive…
Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
The problematical issue of the nonduality / Advaita path is this type of investigation tends to be thinking-based, thus a mind process. Conceptual thinking and metal construction tend to happen. As one gets good at this habit the mind can create a fictional state of feeling and experience that is not based in real life. This is how the unconscious mind operates via its Prime Directives. To be blunt, one creates their own 'fairyland', which points to the lack of pillar No1 Correct Presence Practice.
Thus we Westerners tend to find this approach easy and agreeable as we live in a mind-dominated culture. This is why practitioners of this methodology tend to be ungrounded, mentally agile, smart, use metal constructs and use mind words. These individuals tend to be disjointed from their emotions and body senses. All this can be rectified by Correct Presence Practice. This takes non-duality into being real and out of its major drawbacks as a methodology.
This is the beauty of this framework and confirms Pillar 9, common sense and it applies to all endeavours not just spirituality. If your spiritual practice skills cannot be applied to your work, relationships, hobbies and sports performance then it may indicate blocks are holding you back from true Awakening.
To complicate it further as one explores the question 'Who Am I' tends to gravitate an individual into their lower and/or higher mental bodies. The lower mental body is more commonly known as the Jungian lower self, with the small 's'. This can be defined as ego psychology and the normal human mind. The spiritual structure known as the higher mental body is often referred to as the Self, with the capital 'S'. In the Laws of Grace course we explore the nuances of this as part of your mastery of Presence practice.
I speak to this erroneous approach in several videos as I did spend 12 years being lost in my lower and higher mental bodies. I was also very good at accessing the bliss body, the outer sheath or skin of our energy bodies. It was through personal feedback (pillar No6 in the Enlightenment framework) by an Awakened teacher that I was told I was in my mind, and that I had to ground it. This Advaita approach misses the fundamental base of Correct Presence Practice step 1, being grounded so all your neurology and spiritual anatomy is activated.
Perhaps the original and ancient Advaita Vedānta texts do teach correct grounding. However these days groundedness is usually missing in my observation and feeling the bandwidth of those who use this methodology. As I share in the bandwidth video, the frequency range of these spiritual structures is defined and not true step 3 Presence, but a narrow frequency subset.
In the Who Am I Ramana Maharshi page I explore this further. Test it for yourself. It is critical that you examine pillar No4 Law Zero of self honesty and self responsibility. Then have the courage to look deeper for any blind spots (pillar No8) to check if you are not gravitating to a learned tendency that feels comfortable. The level of resistance that non-duality people have to going deeper beyond the mind is a sign that they are blind spotting themselves. The 9 pillar framework will hopefully help them see that actioning Correct Presence Practice can help incarnate them to shift to true evidence-based Awakening. Non duality is not common sense, it is only plausibility and truism-based.
Too many nondual students hold onto a 'no doer' that means they are not responsible for their volitional attention. Thus they excuse their lack of conscious Presence by saying there is no person to practice Presence. I still await an explanation by a nondual practitioner to discount volitional attention's role in basic operation of being a human and Awakening.
This is my story, I did this for 12 years, and 2 years of proper Presence real Abiding Awakening. I created 12 years of extra suffering through incorrect Presence practice. This is especially the case when I had a truly massive awakening in late 1996. If I'd had had this knowledge and applied Correct Presence Practice I may have been able to hold that Awakening and enter phase 2 and 3 Abidance. It took a full 5 months to fall from Grace and have my mind fully reassert itself. A decade of hell followed as a result. If you have had a significant Awakening I would suggest you make contact and we investigate your options in a coaching session.
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