You are on page 1of 6

Final Purity There is a way to respond to life that is always miraculous, that is free from fear, and that

always transcends the mind's ability to grasp or understand. Indeed, responding to life in the way that I'm speaking about demands that we know how to act in such a way that moves faster than any form of premeditation would allow. Learning this secret enables us to endlessly discover a mystery that cannot be imagined. To be able to live in this way that is always miraculous, we must be willing to be in a state of not knowing. That means we have to be ready to embrace a kind of austerity that is relentless. This austerity is the unconditional renunciation of the need to know. Indeed, there can be no final purity in any spiritual attainment unless one can do this perfectly. Purity can become manifest only when one is able to live without reservation in that knowledge that one doesn't know and will never know. I'm describing a way of living that most would consider strange, nonsensical, and even dangerous. You see, one discovers that one doesn't need to know in order to be able to function perfectly. That's the miracle, that's the mystery, and that is what is extraordinary about this.

The fifth tenet, For the Sake of the Whole, recontextualizes the seeker's fundamental relationship to the spiritual path. It describes the evolution of the very motive to be free. When we embark on the path, most of us naturally want freedom or enlightenment for our own sake. This is why we begin with the first tenet, which says I want to be free more than anything else. But if we sincerely pursue that one-pointed aspiration, and authentically develop and mature, we will find that eventually our motivation begins to shift. As our understanding and experience grow, we realize that the desire to be free is not a personal matter. Indeed, to the seeker who is becoming a finder, it becomes more and more apparent that we are all part of a vast evolutionary process, and that the aspiration for freedom is nothing less than the expression of the evolutionary impulse itself, within the human heart and mind. In this, we recognize that the pursuit of enlightenment could never be merely for our own liberation. The movement of spiritual awakening is part and parcel of the cosmic process of development, and the purpose of enlightenment is ultimately to bring the light of awakened consciousness, to that process itself. Fourteen billion years ago something burst out of nothing, and the highest expression of that miraculous surge of becoming, is found in the human being's emerging capacity for higher consciousness. Consciousness is not the possession of any particular individual. But it is only through particular individuals that consciousness can evolve. So the goal of evolutionary enlightenment is for the individual to become liberated from the fears and desires of the ego, so that he or she becomes an open channel, through which consciousness itself is free to develop and express itself in this world. The fifth tenet says, I want to be free not for my own sake, but for the sake of the whole. When this becomes our spontaneous response to the longing for liberation, something very significant has occurred. What began as a freely made choice has become a choiceless obligation. Our fundamental motive has evolved from one that is self-serving, to one that is not separate from the very motive behind the expanding universethe pure passion of the big bang, the God impulse, which is our own authentic self. When that pure passion becomes our own passion, human life becomes ennobledit becomes the holy life, the spiritual life, a life of meaning and value. We discover that we have come home, and have found our place in the whole matrix of the cosmos. We know who we are and why we are here. As long as our fundamental motive is personal and self-centered, life will never deeply make sense. But when we embrace a motive that absolutely transcends the personal, every moment becomes infused with a powerful sense of purpose. That's the death of the ego. All our petty self-concern is radically displaced, because we are no longer living for our own sake, but are now living for the sake of the whole, consumed by a passion to be utterly free, so that nothing will inhibit our ability to participate wholeheartedly in the evolutionary process.

The fourth tenet is called The Truth of Impersonality. It states that ultimately every aspect of your own personal experience, can be seen from a perspective that is completely impersonal. And it is from that vast universal perspective alone that true liberation can be found. The impersonal view reveals to us that the separate self-sense or ego, is nothing more than an illusion of uniqueness, created moment by moment through our compulsive habit of personalizing almost every thought, feeling, and sensation we have. The truth is that the human experience could never be a personal affair. Most of the highs and lows we go through, and compulsively claim as mine, are in fact shockingly impersonal. From the biggest perspective, all human experience can be seen as being part of a processan evolutionary or developmental process that is moving forward in time. Our own personal experience of that process in all its many dimensionsinner and outer, gross and subtleis ultimately a very small part of an infinite unfolding. Thoughts and feelings that arise in individual consciousness, reflect emotional and psychological structures or habits, that have slowly developed over hundreds of thousands of years. If you step back and begin to look more and more objectively, in light of this greater context we exist within, you will slowly but surely begin to recognize for yourself the impersonal nature of all of your own experience. In that recognition, the personal dimension will suddenly become completely transparent to you. This insight, even if only temporary, will completely undercut every belief you have about being a unique individuated entity, who lives in some separate bubble, mysteriously isolated from everything else that exists. You are a process. Dare to face this and you will become transparent to yourself. The personal is simply the veil that creates the illusion of separation that is ego. And it's a mighty illusion. It's powerful and profound. Most of us live our entire lives behind that veil, never stepping beyond it except perhaps in brief glimpses of higher states. But if you are willing to face into the truth of impersonality, and have the courage to see through your own personal self-sense, you will discover the utterly impersonal nature of the authentic self, which is who you really are. And as you embrace the impersonal perspective, your identification and allegiance will shift dramatically from the personal concerns of the ego, to the impersonal passion of the authentic self, which cares only for the future of our collective developmental process. To the authentic self, the personal is irrelevant. If your allegiance is with the authentic self, you may still experience the personal dimensionthe ego's fears, neuroses, and irrational compulsionsbut you will miraculously find that you have the emotional, psychological, and spiritual strength to be able to handle it. Why? Because you know that you are only a very small part of a vast impersonal process. When you pull away the veil of the personal, you discover a radical objectivity that liberates you, right now, to consciously participate in the highest level of that process, which is the evolution of consciousness itself.

The third tenet is the ultimate form of spiritual practice. It tells us that if we want to be free, we must be willing to Face Everything and Avoid Nothing at all times, in all places, under all circumstances. Most forms of spiritual practice are ultimately about the cultivation of awareness, and facing everything and avoiding nothing means cultivating a capacity for awareness that is profound. The ego is deeply attached to self-image, and is always manipulating its environment in such a way, that it will only see the reflection of itself that it is seeking for. The ego's tendency is to avoid, deny, and reject any information that it receives, from the outside world or from our own internal experience, that would in any way contradict that self-image. So as long as we are identifying with ego, we will choose to be blind to the less wholesome aspects of our self, and inevitably will act out of those conditioned and unconscious impulses, and wreak havoc all around us. The liberated relationship to life is one that is free from ego. It is only the ego that has a self-image to protect, and that image creates a barrier, a wall that shields the self from too much reality. The authentic self is already free, radically unselfconscious, and only interested in what is real and true. It has no image to protect and no motive to avoid anything. So the reason to practice the third tenet is to shatter the ego's defenses in every moment. Facing everything and avoiding nothing is the practice that removes all obstacles, to the spontaneous uninhibited emergence of the authentic self. Only an individual who truly wants to be free will be prepared to abandon the pretense of the ego, and to see things as they are. Only one who strives for transparency, authenticity, and emptiness of self, and who is deeply motivated by the impulse to evolve, is going to be able to face reality in this way. Anyone else, in the end, will find that they are too invested in maintaining the pretense of a separate self, to even begin to practice the third tenet in earnest. But as we begin to identify less and less with the fears and desires of the ego, and more and more with the evolutionary passion of the authentic self, we will experience less fear, hesitation, and resistance to seeing what is true. We will find the strength and the moral courage to be able to bear whatever we need to bear, in order to face everything and avoid nothing at all times, in all places, under all circumstances. Why? Because we want to be free more than anything else. We want to liberate the self from the grip of ego, so that consciousness itself will be free to evolve through us. Our capacity for this degree of awareness and self-knowledge is completely dependent upon our intention to be free, because in that we align with the pure passion of the authentic self, and the very motive to avoid is transcended.

The second tenet, The Law of Volitionality, states that if you want to be free more than anything else, you must be willing to take absolute responsibility for your own self. Living the second tenet is no easy task. There are many influences that come together to make up the self: personal history, cultural conditioning, biological instincts, and perhaps even the karmic imprints of previous lifetimes. There are the fears and desires of the ego, and the evolutionary impulse of the authentic self. But what makes it possible for you to take responsibility for all of this, is the recognition that in the end, you are always choosing to be the person that you are. You are making conscious and unconscious choices in every moment, that determine what actions you will take and what impact you will have on the world around you. The power of the second tenet entirely depends upon accepting the fact that on some level, we all always know exactly what we are doing. It boldly declares that if you want to manifest the revelation of wholeness, nonduality, and enlightenment in this world, you must actively take responsibility right now, for everything you are doing in the present moment, for all you have done in the past, and for the conditioned responses that arise as a result of things that others have done to you. Enlightenment means freedom from karma. Karma is created every time you act out of unconsciousness, ignorance, and selfishness in ways that cause suffering to others. For most of us, karma is a powerful forcethe accumulated momentum of literally countless actions. The momentum of karma is what makes the personal world of ego and unenlightenment appear so attractive to us. The authentic self in each of us is compelled to become enlightened and perpetually evolve, but the ego is driven by the need to always be in control and ever remain the same. And it is the choices that we make in every moment, that determine which part of our self will be creating our destiny. Each time we act out of ego, karma is instantly created. There are few human beings who truly aspire to be absolutely responsible for themselves. Most prefer to see themselves as unconscious victims of the forces within and without. As long as you allow yourself to be victimized by your own conditioned responses, that arise as a result of past wounds and traumas, it is inevitable that sooner or later you are going to wound and traumatize others, and the momentum of your own karma will only increase. But when you renounce the victim position, you finally take the weight of your karma upon your own shoulders. You bear it so that no one else has to suffer. Heroically, you choose to liberate the world from your own miserable egoand if you care about the evolution of consciousness, you will be in a position to make a significant contribution. In an evolutionary context, the individual is aspiring to become liberated so that the authentic self, the evolutionary impulse, is free to act, to respond, to transform this world. The authentic self has no past; it has no karma; it has never been wounded or traumatized by anything that has happened to the historical personality in time. It is egoless by nature, and when it meets itself in others, a state of ecstatic intimacy and perfect trust emerges that brings heaven to earth. But in order to be a vessel for that miraculous emergence, you must be living the second tenet to such a degree, that the conditioned and irrational responses of the ego are always contained. Then the multidimensional complex of energy, consciousness, and contradictory impulses that you are, will become the expression of an integrated whole, that not only ceases to create karma, but begins to generate an entirely new and positive momentum, as it moves forward on its evolutionary trajectory.

The first tenet is called Clarity of Intention, and it places the outcome of the spiritual quest directly in your own hands. In the teaching of evolutionary enlightenment, the individual is ultimately responsible for his or her own development. You may say that you want to evolve, that you want to become liberated or enlightened, but whether or not that aspiration bears the fruit of transformation, is entirely dependent upon you. The bottom line is that if you truly want to be free, nothing will be able to stop you. Clarity of intention is the foundation of the spiritual life, and it states that your desire for freedom, your impulse to evolve, has to become more important to you than anything else in this world. Wanting to be free more than anything else is not a feeling; it's an action. It is a conscious position you take in relationship to every choice you make. Without the clear intention to be free, no amount of spiritual practice will change you in the long run. Your success depends entirely upon your conscious choice to be free in every moment. Ultimately you will reach a point where you no longer have a choice, where your own freedom is recognized to be a choiceless obligation. Then the authentic self, which is already perfectly free, will have become the dominant force in your being, and therefore the first tenet will no longer be something you are struggling with. But until you reach that point, clarity of intention needs to be consciously cultivated. When you begin to contemplate clarity of intention, you are likely to discover, as most of us do, that you don't really want freedom more than anything else. You may want to experience the liberating bliss of higher states. You may even have glimpsed the absolute nature of reality from the perspective of consciousness itself, and felt compelled to respond to that revelation. But when you attempt to bridge the gap between that higher perspective, and the reality of your life in the relative world, the ultimate challenge of spiritual freedom reveals itself. You recognize that to become a living expression of that higher perspective, demands nothing less than everything. The serious contemplation of the question, Do I want to be free more than anything else? will inevitably catalyze a profound confrontation with your relationship to life. It will bring to light deep and powerful structures that usually remain hiddenthe authentic self's unbridled passion for freedom, and the ego's fierce resistance and inertia. The first tenet makes it possible, once and for all, to freely choose which of those will determine your destiny. Clarity of intention is simple, but its implications are radical and profound beyond measure. If you want to be free more than anything else, you don't have to depend on higher states; you don't have to wait for God to save you; you don't have to hope for grace to descend. In a truly courageous soul, this tenet will forge a strength and independence of spirit that in and of itself is liberation. Clarity of intention is the foundation of the enlightened life, and the key to the evolution of consciousness itself, because it places your freedom entirely in your own hands.