Hide and Seek: The Power of Awareness

Chapter Fifteen

Samadhi: Experiencing the True Self

Where, indeed, have we concealed our true Self? Our pure consciousness, the very essence of our authentic Self, resides as the source of our mind and thoughts, shrouded by the ceaseless activity of our mental faculties. Thoughts hide pure consciousness.

Yet, when we consciously shift our focus from the surface of our mind to the subtler realms within and transcend the incessant fluctuations of thought, in the inner stillness we experience pure awareness – our true Self. This state, characterized by the silence of the mind and immersion in the true Self, is known as samadhi. In samadhi, it’s not that we think about the Self or contemplate it; rather, the mind ceases its relentless chatter, its ceaseless creation of thoughts, and what remains is the simple essence of “I,” pure consciousness. This transcendent, pure awareness exists beyond the realm of the mind, beyond the realm of thought, as the source of thought and mind.

It is the impressions imprinted by samadhi that, over time, unfurl the realization of our true Self within us. These impressions are nurtured through daily meditation, for samadhi represents the experience of pure consciousness in a state of serene stillness.

During meditation, there are fleeting moments – often mere fractions of a second – when the turbulent waters of thought subside, allowing us to realize the source of thoughts: pure awareness. Though these fleeting moments may often go unnoticed, they leave an indelible and profound impression within us.

Over time, these impressions of samadhi accumulate. The power of that millisecond experience of pure consciousness surpasses our comprehension. Pure awareness is our true Self, the core of our being. Each instance in which our mind dissolves in the stillness of pure consciousness, brings about purification, neutralizing old impressions while imprinting the impressions of samadhi.

Enlightenment is a journey of recognition – an unfolding process that takes place through repeated remembrances of our true nature. Samadhi offers a direct experience of our true nature in its tranquil state. Initially, we may only encounter samadhi with our eyes closed, in the depths of meditation. However, as the impressions of samadhi proliferate, the mind becomes permeated with the essence of pure consciousness. Pure awareness is infused into our mind. Enlightenment entails the revelation of our fullness as consciousness, coexisting harmoniously as the witness of an active mind. To achieve this, the mind must be steeped in the experience of consciousness at all times – pure consciousness as the silent witness during waking, dreaming, and deep sleep. Eventually, we begin to experience samadhi even with our eyes open as the witness of action and non-action.

As the impressions of samadhi multiply, the radiant state of samadhi begins to shine forth within the mind, even in the midst of thought creation. What was once concealed is now revealed, what was obscured is now illuminated, and what was forgotten is now remembered. Gradually, that luminous essence of pure awareness – the witness, our true Self – is fully experienced, irrespective of the mental activity. This profound shift in our identification moves us from perceiving ourselves solely as the body and thoughts to recognizing ourselves as consciousness. We remember that we are the authentic Self, pure consciousness, pure awareness. We experience that we are the absolute, blissful, vast consciousness.

This underscores the significance of meditation to infuse the state of samadhi into the very fabric of our minds. This infusion is the process of remembering, of unveiling what was concealed. We remember what was hidden and forgotten. It was always present, though veiled by the layers of incessant thoughts and an identification with a constructed identification. Step by step, meditation by meditation, we experience and comprehend that we are the ocean of consciousness, while the thoughts, the body, the emotions, and the roles we play are its waves. Our misperception that we are a constructed identity transforms into the true perception that our authentic Self is pure consciousness.

If we just take courses, read about resolution and awareness and don’t practice, we go hungry. If we just listen and read about food and never cook and eat it, we starve.

When we meditate, we taste the true Self, we experience that we are that experience of consciousness in samadhi. This is the ultimate nourishment.

The Experience of Self:

While we can certainly acquire intellectual knowledge about the Self, this cognitive understanding, though valuable, cannot match the profound impact of experiencing it firsthand. But what exactly is this elusive experience, and why do we dedicate ourselves to practices like meditation?

Through this experience, we have the potential to hold the essence of true reality, a transformative revelation that can alleviate our suffering and reveal our authentic Self.

Our greatest ally is the mind, because through mind we reach the source of mind.

In that journey toward the experience of source, the first sensation that arises as we draw nearer to pure consciousness is an overwhelming sense of peace. It’s a contentment intertwined with a profound ability to let go. But what exactly are we letting go of and releasing? Our attachments and aversions; our resistance. It’s not an action we consciously take; rather, as we approach the serene depths of pure awareness, the intelligence and power of consciousness color our experience. We experience our essential nature first as peace.

Peace of mind grants us access to the realm of inner stillness, where the incessant fluctuations of the mind dwindle to a minimum. As we journey into the proximity of stillness, we begin to encounter vastness. The walls of the ego itself start to crumble, and our limited identifications with the body and mind gradually lose their grip. These mistaken perceptions and misidentifications that once tightly bound us gradually loosen their hold. Everything that previously confined us within limitations is set free and the prison door is opened to vastness.

As the ego vanishes, we perceive love. It is not the minor reflection of love we feel when we love someone. It is an essential love, a love that arises when separation dissolves into unity. Now duality wanes. We are no longer the subject or object. It is no longer Self and non-self. Fear is replaced with fearlessness as there is no other to fear. Multiplicity is revealed as only a concept, an appearance. This love is independent. It requires no other. Diversity becomes unity. Oneness is love. Love is the revelation of consciousness. We begin to realize what we truly are as the energy of Self begins to overwhelm our boundaries and dissolve our sense of separateness. We experience that the immenseness of this love is Self.

We think this love is all that could ever be wanted or needed for our happiness. But as we become enveloped by stillness, we become happiness. It is not anything like the happiness of getting our outcomes or having our dreams come true. It is bliss and we clearly experience that bliss is the source of love. Bliss mingles with the light of consciousness as our essential nature. This is the happiness that we have always yearned for, that which has been the true motivation throughout our life.

As we go deeper. We become That. There is no other. This is samadhi. We become the unlimited consciousness, the bliss, the vastness, the love, the peace. They are revealed as our essence. This is what we sought all along. This is the importance of our search. This is what we become – what we have always been; the true Self.

Crossroads:

Throughout our life we lived in our core fears, in separation. We constructed an identity as a veneer to maintain our acceptability, our worth and our sufficiency. We lived with a subtle loneliness and sadness that arose from not knowing who we are, while feeling too much shame to show our pain, loneliness and depression to anyone.

And here we stand at the crossroads. We face our realization. This experience of who we are changes everything.

We have finally sourced the true Self. We have finally revealed what has been hidden and forgotten inside – but was always there. Now the fear can subside. Now the veneer can be removed. Now the shame can depart. Now the misperceptions and mis-identifications can dissolve. Now the grasping can ease and the desires can recede. Now we reveal the bliss, love, vast unity and peace that we are. What was fractured is restored. What was separate is one. What was forgotten is remembered.

As this experience of peace, unity, love, bliss and pure awareness begins to be revealed within, the realization dawns that this is not something won or bestowed upon us, not obtained or sourced from outside. This awareness, this bliss, this love, this vastness and this peace are us. This intelligence and power are our true Self. This is our true worth. We are sufficient in our awareness. We are worthy in our consciousness.

Back to the Previous Chapter
Table of Contents
Continue to Chapter Sixteen