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The core of what I talk about is truly ancient and yet what I offer feels fresh in many ways with significant differences from most of what is now commonly found elsewhere. This is why I say that my teachings are unique and I will touch on some of those differences in just a minute. Perhaps my work will help you understand this ancient wisdom in the deepest way possible and inspire us all to respect one another, treat each other kindly, and work together for both personal and world peace.
While I do my best to make my writing as clear as possible, it is still true that this wisdom unfolds more freely and completely when there is a dynamic two-way conversation between us. This is why I offer both written material and a few ways for us to interact.
The first step is to find out if my work is a good match for you. Your attraction to this wisdom should be on both an intuitive level and on an intellectual level. Your mind and your intuition are like best friends who love to work together. One is not superior to the other because they each have different jobs. When they are both functioning properly, you will move more easily towards the deepest wisdom and towards an optimum emotional state of being. You will be at peace, in joy, and available for kindness and compassion more often. This is the fruit of enlightenment and you share it with everyOne.
My free essays make it very easy for you to tell if my book is a good match for you. If you like my essays, you will probably like my book. Pretty simple. In fact, these free essays are so substantial that you don’t really need to buy the book. If you study the essays carefully, you will have a very good handle on this wisdom. Of course the book will bring you a more complete picture, but the core of that understanding is in the free essays.
And yet as I have already mentioned, a dynamic two-conversation can provide tremendous benefit. So my goal is to offer this without creating any financial barriers while still providing a way for people to help me financially, if they are inspired. Check my website to learn about my online video meetings and perhaps some in-person meetings and workshops.
I want to do all of this on a donation-only basis with the suggested donation amount of zero. You see, if I suggest a higher amount, well, someone might feel bad if they cannot comfortably meet that amount and decide not to get in touch with me at all. Or if they do get in touch, they might feel that they are somehow inadequate for not contributing at the “proper” level or that I will look down on them for not donating enough. I certainly wouldn’t do that and I don’t want there to be any chance that someone might think that way. I want people who are truly matched to this teaching to contact me regardless of their financial status. So I think this approach will work.
Here’s more about that: Mystical Money Matters
This teaching is very simple and you don’t need to read lots of material to “get it.” This is why my book is only about 180 pages. But this understanding is very different from the way we normally think and this is why it takes some time for it to sink in. And for whatever reason, some people who don’t yet understand but think that they do understand, start to teach. Some of these people have become very popular and this has led to a lot of confusion.
In my opinion, much of this confusion began thousands of years ago because of some simple mistranslations that were almost correct, but not quite. And since that time, genuinely sincere teachers and students bent over backwards trying to make sense of these poor translations. But this cannot really be done since these mistranslations do not contain the truth, or at least not in a way that can be easily understood. Let’s consider a few examples now.
One important misunderstanding concerns the word “illusion.” Many people seem to think that an illusion is something that isn’t real. But an illusion is real – it does indeed exist. But it exists in a deceptive way. This small change in wording makes a huge difference in meaning.
I think that long ago, the teaching was that there was more to creation than what we could see with our eyes. This is why it was said that the world was an illusion. But later this was misunderstood to mean that the world was “unreal.” This misunderstanding has caused tremendous confusion and you can see this in the Hindu teaching where we read something like this: “God is real. The world is unreal. God is the world.” What I would say is that God arises as all of creation and every aspect of creation is fully divine, both in its visible form and in its unseen essence. So all of creation is a fully divine illusion.
More here: In Nondual Wisdom, What Is Real and What Is Unreal?
My mentor, Timothy Conway, is very knowledgeable about Buddhism, Hinduism, and other “nondual” religions. He holds the opinion that “anatta” was originally understood two and a half thousand years ago as “not self” and that the context Buddha used it in is essential in helping you understand what was meant. But within a few hundred years, the understanding changed from “not self” to “no self” and it was removed from all context. When the statement “there is no self” is taken without any context at all, it means that you do not exist in any way at all. Yet it is self-evident that you do exist. The real question is this: What is it that you exist as? More on that in a minute.
This mistranslation of “anatta” became the center point of the “No Self Doctrine,” which has been a very important tenet in Buddhism for over two thousand years. And in my opinion, it has been one of the most significant misunderstandings keeping Buddhist followers from waking up.
Now I need to be very clear about the fact that I am not a Buddhist teacher nor am I an expert on Buddhism. Not even close. I simply learned this “not self” translation from Timothy. Even still, I do think that what I offer on this point can be very helpful to those of you who have deeply pondered the subject of “no self” and have not yet come to a satisfying understanding. If this sounds like you, perhaps you might find my opinion intriguing.
Basically what Buddha was saying is that the person you appear to be is not what you really are in a fundamental way. But just because this person is not fundamentally what you are does not mean that the person does not exist or that you do not exist. It just means that the person is “not [your fundamental] self.” And this brings up a good question. What is your fundamental self?
You exist fundamentally as pure awareness. This awareness is the One Awareness, the Divine Awareness. This awareness was never created yet it is the Source of all of creation. You exist fundamentally as this Source-Awareness, which has no form and therefore cannot be seen, heard, felt or sensed in any way. It is not a thing and has no thing-like qualities that can be perceived.
So some people have used the phrase “Not-A-Thing” and this later became “No-Thing.” I’m kind of okay with those two phrases since they point to the formless nature of this Source-Awareness but I don’t use them very much since they don’t convey the two capacities of this awareness: the capacity to perceive (Awareness) and the capacity to create what it perceives (Source). This is why I strongly prefer the phrase Source-Awareness. Anyway, from “No-Thing,” we got “nothing,” “The Void” and “Emptiness,” and in my opinion, these are not very helpful.
You can read more here: Anatta – “Not Self” Rather Than “No Self”
By the way, here is a link to a YouTube video where you can hear Timothy recite the Pali text and offer the “not self” translation: Timothy Conway - Anatta: Not Your Fundamental Identity - Satsang Excerpt
Should a nondual teacher say that there is no such thing as duality? No, not at all. There most certainly are dualistic pairs such as hot and cold. We use the word “nondual” to point to the idea that God and creation are One Reality, not two. The amount of confusion around this point is high enough that I seldom refer to myself as a nondual teacher.
Find out more in this book excerpt: Why Do We Call It Nondual Wisdom?
I also want to point out that I make a distinction between Awareness and consciousness. Timothy and the ancient text also make this distinction but I seldom hear anyone else do so. Awareness is the capacity to perceive and consciousness offers a window through which the One Awareness looks. There is only One Awareness yet there are many personal consciousnesses (souls). It is important to note that these personal consciousnesses do not have any sentience of there own. Again, they are like a window and a window cannot see anything at all. You exist fundamentally as this One Awareness that is looking through all personal consciousnesses.
I go into this more in this book excerpt: What Is Enlightenment?
These examples show you how my teachings are unique since they are so different from what is commonly taught and yet not new since they get back to the original core meaning. While there are a few more important misunderstandings about this subject, let’s move on to another important topic that many “nondual” teachers skip completely.
As you may know, the book The Secret offers us the idea that you can be, do and have anything you want. While I think that’s only true when you consider all of your incarnations, I still think that it is very beneficial for people to understand the process of creation. This is what allows you to consciously create a peaceful life where you easily share kindness with others.
Your beliefs, emotions and actions create your inner experience and your outer circumstances but you cannot pick specific circumstances as if you were ordering specific items from a catalog. The circumstances that arise are best understood as a reflection of your beliefs, emotions and actions but no one knows exactly what will arise ahead of time. And yet you can still change the nature of your emotional state of being and the nature of the conditions that arise around you by changing how you handle the three aspects of the creative process: your beliefs, emotions and actions.
With The Secret, you are supposed to focus your thoughts on the specific outer circumstances that you desire. But I think you should instead first cultivate a positive inner emotional state of being. In other words, choose to be happy now, no matter how unfavorable your current circumstances might be. For positive change to arise, any negative emotions such as frustration, resentment, worry, or grumpiness must be replaced with joy. Without this positive shift, there will not be a shift in your actions or the nature of your outer conditions. For this to be done effectively, you will need to change the core beliefs that are preventing you from being happy right now.
Your core beliefs are your defining beliefs about yourself, the world and how you fit into the world. Your core beliefs are not superficial conscious thoughts, but instead, they are ingrained thoughts that you have come to accept as true. But even so, they can be easily examined and changed if you choose to do so. New beliefs will lead to new emotions. The new beliefs and emotions will work together and inspire you to take new actions. All of this will soon lead to new circumstances. But remember, your peaceful state of being and the kindness you share are your primary focus. Your outer circumstances are never a measure of your success and they do not control your emotions.
In the following two essays, I go into more about the creative process and I offer you some of the steps you can easily take now to help you change your life in a positive way:
Seth: “You create your own reality!”
Well, that’ll wrap it up for today. All my free essays will give you a good idea of what I teach and my audio and video recordings will give you a good feel for my personality. With that, I hope it will be easy for you to tell if you want to work with me. Drop me a short email if you do. Thanks!
In truth, I honor your divine nature.
All my best, Thomas Razzeto
Written July 25, 2018, with slight edits on May 3, 2023.Tweet
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