How can Reality be "One" when it is patently obvious that we are all separate beings? Can Reason entertain a reality different than that of the Materialism that pervades our thoughts?
Our belief in a world external to ourselves, filled with people and things that are not us, is an overwhelming fact of our existence. But similarly, our absolute certainty that there is more to reality than just this physical world is a spiritual fact that bears more truth than any other in our lives. We seek to explain this spiritual nature as some metaphysical reality, accepting the constraint of Science that will not allow for any usurpation of the actuality of the physical universe. And we flounder trying. Once we allow our thoughts to be forced into some metaphysical realm, we find ourselves at a loss to explain that single most important validation of spiritual truth - the undeniable presence at the heart of our existence. This is the spiritual truth that we seek, and it is not to be found in the physical reality of Science. The physical reality of Science is to be found in it!
"An Introduction to Awareness" is a philosophical journey that takes the reader into the heart of this pure presence of nondual reality - a reality in which the spiritual is not metaphysical, but actual, in which physical reality is 'a machine in the ghost'. This pure presence that we cannot deny is the awareness that lies at the heart of our experiences and thoughts. This irrefutable truth is used as a starting point in a processual analysis of awareness, and of our ideas about existence and self, leading to a clear understanding of the nondual nature of reality as the pure presence of non-individuated Awareness.
Normally, we understand awareness as being like seeing, or hearing, or any of our other senses, somehow mirrored by the organs within our bodies. Thus something must be aware, sensing the world, like a brain which somehow `sees' what the eyes see and `hears' what the ears hear - even if we cannot locate it with any assurance, explain how it works, or why it arises. Some try to get free of the idea of consciousness being locked-up in our heads by erroneously proposing that the universe itself is aware, as if the universe was an individual being. Others reduce awareness to some phantom-like add-on to our neurological processes. As you will discover reading through this book, Awareness is not a 'sensing' of anything, it is a 'doing' of everything. It is this activity of Awareness which we call "being," and "energy" is just a name we give to our measurements of it.
This is the proper beginning of our understanding. Moving beyond this basic depiction of reality, "An Introduction to Awareness" forges a link between the pure Presence within experience, which is our true essence, and the phenomenal world of being. Thus the scientific and spiritual realms are brought together, perfectly balanced, each supported in a way that respects its validity, without denying the other.
It is not an easy thing to change how one understands the world especially when our conceptual ideas get in the way. Yet, conceptual thought is part of the nature of being human though we forget that concepts are merely models of reality and are not real themselves. This book shows how to change how you view the world and your thoughts about it in order to realize the wholeness of Reality, while still retaining the skillful means that the modern world has given us. It shows you how to use concepts in a way that does not endanger true understanding so that individual spiritual practices can be freed of our erroneous preconceptions. The book itself is the practice.