We are living in a very auspicious era: so many paths, healing methods, meditations, channelers, wonderful spiritual writers, so much information to dip into, choose from, try out, and experiment with — we can be like ‘butterflies’ with no clear goal. Or we can miss the magic opportunity and be put off by trigger words like “religion”, “God”, “Christianity”, “karma”, “Buddhism”, “reincarnation” and so on.
All genuine paths are based on the same simple Truth: “There really is only One”. This is our evolutionary intelligence test for the understanding to arise that will guide us safely through the labyrinth of choice and multiplicity.
The guiding thread is present in five personal insights (upstream of religion) which enable YOU — on whatever path you travel — to check out where you are now, how far you have got, and how to progress towards your goal:
CENTRE There really is only One. Call IT God, Source, Tao, One, Nirvana, Emptiness... whatever – it’s not the name. Every living and non-living thing is part of the One. There is no “Other”. Every thing arises out of the Centre of this One and subsides back into it. Just like waves rise and fall but are never separate from the sea. The Centre of the One has a physical location in the centre of every living being. In the case of a human being, this is the centre of gravity. Just above the navel and in front of the spine. Locating it, as an experience, makes possible the escape from physical existence and entry into our spiritual home and origin. In deep sleep, you subside into it quite naturally. But, because you lose consciousness, you are unaware of it. Through meditation you can enter it knowingly. Once inside it you can verify things for yourself and gain understanding of yourself.
ETHICS The fundamental, easily understood ethic is: Don’t do to others what you would not like done to yourself. Since all is One, what you do to another - you do to you. Ethics is the natural result of this understanding. In practice this means you would stop killing, stealing, sexual misconduct, false speech and taking drugs and intoxicating drinks which lead to carelessness and mistakes which affect others (and yourself). Ethics becomes your lifetime’s training for perfecting behaviour as your thoughts, speech and actions align with the truth of Oneness.
HAPPY MIND Because you are not causing harm to “another” this gives rise to a happy mind. Happiness is the thermometer which indicates where you are now. By asking yourself, “Am I happy?” you can gauge what percent - 40%, 50%, 80%? You may notice that it can vary hour to hour, day to day, week to week... Ethics stabilises happiness and enables you to home in on purifying the mind so that negative or unwholesome states will never rise again. When this is achieved you will have reached your eternal dwelling place of perfect ethics and happiness.
CLEAR CONSCIENCE This is the test. Although the things that you have done in the past will still cast their shadows on the present, the shadows themselves will fade. Your conscience will become clearer. The radiation from the Centre, which is non-dualistic in nature, reflects back, from the point of view of non-duality, your mental activities. It is a mirror image. Every time you experience a feeling of discomfort emanating from the stomach area around the Centre, can you associate it with something you have done, are doing or thinking?
DOING SOMETHING ABOUT IT – NOW! It’s very difficult to be honest with ourselves – we can justify our behaviour with lightning speed, avoid confrontation and endlessly occupy ourselves with substitute activities rather than face the truth about the way things really are. Acknowledging that we did something wrong, made a mistake, is the first step. Then we need to do something to put it right. Sometimes it appears that nothing can be done now – the person may appear to be dead or out of reach. You can still do something meritorious and share the merit with them wherever they are NOW. Done with clear intention, it will reach them and make them happy. This is a liberating thought because it opens the door of opportunity. Sometimes it seems that nothing can be done and one just has to put up with the consequences and wait for karma to come round again.
These five insights, when developed and maintained with self-awareness, change you. When your actions towards others are positive, you experience the positive result of being drawn closer and closer to the Centre of the One.
This article is based on talks by Brian Taylor, author of ‘CENTRE The Truth about Everything’.