Duality arises when consciousness arises. I am present and I know that I am present – that is duality. I am and I am not conscious of being present – that is unicity. There is only one, but when this conscious presence is there, then there is a sense of duality.
Consciousness emerges and a sense of duality is there. Can I recede in consciousness to the point of emergence, which is the emergence of the sense of “I” or “me”?
We are propelled by the dynamic of emergence and it appears to us that this dynamic is the only possible way of living. Drawn along with the stream of names and forms (that incessantly emerge into consciousness) like the fish in the current, at some point we discover the possibility of turning around and moving against the stream of creation, like the salmon swimming upstream.
We need all of our energy for this radical ‘change in direction’ (which is actually a change in dimension). This is the movement of procreation (pratiprasava in Sanskrit) that breaks the bondage of the stream of conditioned consciousness that has been our world since early age.
We are able to turn our stream of consciousness (our attention) inward, but to not be drawn over and over again back into the outward-directed stream requires great perseverance and trust.
Much has been reported by those practiced in this discipline, this life-long learning. Zen masters, Taoist sages, Christian mystics, yogi’s, Sufi masters etc. have all given us what words were available to them to point us in the right direction. At the end it comes down to each of us being as determined as the salmon to reach the point of inception. Like a person drowning puts out tremendous effort to reach the surface to breathe, so must we wake up to the fact of being ‘under water’ and to follow that yearning, that urge for “air”.
Will I stop and watch an amusing kitten video clip, and then another and another if my hair is burning? Only I am not yet aware that my hair is burning. The whole world is burning right now.
Why is it so important to reach the dimension outside of the trance of conditioned consciousness? Because there is a water that quenches all flames. Once established in that Ultimate Dimension more and more consistently, we flow with an altogether different stream of consciousness into the realm of duality. We flow with the energy stream of peace, compassion, understanding for ourselves and others, and service to others.