- growing up (personal growth) and
- waking up (spiritual or transpersonal awakening).
In this blog post, I'd like to elaborate on the latter since the underlying subject in these blogs is states of awareness after crossing the Abyss. I'll present my thoughts on psychological-transpersonal identity development through two attainments: Binah and Chokmah, or Understanding and Wisdom.
Of course, Understanding and Wisdom do not and can not stand alone; they both rely on the Crown, Kether. So, I will submit the concept of "identity collapse" as a very important, if not the most important, experience up here above the Abyss.
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law
After crossing the Abyss, the identity of an adept is infused by the light so powerful that it looks like darkness. Our holy texts have labeled that light as NOX.
It is, of course, pure Light; it has nothing to do with the darkness of ignorance or anything else below the Abyss.
It is just so far beyond even the reach of the current state of consciousness of an adept that it appears as dark.
Interestingly enough, in the Vedanta teachings, there is a "cover" that dwells above the highest subtle material worlds, and it is dark or black. Yogis who wish to attain liberation must penetrate that dark cover (again, the Brhad Bhagavatamritam by Sanatan Gosvami comes to mind here; an eager adept ought to look into it.).
To attain this not-light or NOX, one has to choose to surrender all that she thinks or feels she is, along with every single spiritual attainment to the Babalon, our Lady, who resides in Binah.
You can find information on some aspects of that surrender in the blog post on Crossing the Abyss, here >>
After the successful crossing of the Abyss, an adept, now Master (of Samadhi, as per One star in sight, see below) promptly identifies with the Mother. Hmm. Maybe the word "identifies" is not precise enough; I think 'notices' or 'becomes aware of' or 'embraces the evident' is more accurate. It is not a question of attainment but a matter of noting what or Who has always been here.
The point I am making here is that the state of awareness attained in Binah is not new; it is not created anew, and therefore, it only has to be noticed. The Mother is always here; our Lady Babalon is forever present, even if some are not yet aware of Her fully.
And the one process, the only one to really become thoroughly identified with Her (as far as I can see), is to surrender completely to Her. Surrendering here means to surrender everything not by cutting off or renouncing but by embracing everything. In practice, of course, this means opening up and embracing sorrow, too. And this might take a long time.
Consider this: how much suffering has already been experienced by you that has not yet been fully processed (faced with, felt through and through, and thus transformed)? And how much sorrow is present out there?
Well, all of that has to be embraced. And that is a very good thing! The more one opens up, the more inner support one receives!
When the process of surrender is complete, there is nothing left to embrace. There is not even one iota of sorrow (among other things) left to face, to really experience and to feel, and thus integrate into this state of awareness.
Tantric Master Khyentse Rinpoche has put this beautifully:
"The everyday practice is simply to develop a complete acceptance and openness to all situations and emotions, and to all people, experiencing everything totally without mental reservations and blockages, so that one never withdraws or centralizes into oneself.
This produces a tremendous energy which is usually locked up in the process of mental evasion and a general running away from life experiences.
Clarity of awareness, may, in its initial stages, be unpleasant or fear inspiring; if so, then one should open oneself completely to the pain or the fear and welcome it.
In this way the barriers created by one's own habitual emotional reactions and prejudices are broken down. When performing the meditation practice one should develop the feeling of opening oneself completely to the whole universe with absolute simplicity and nakedness of mind, ridding oneself of all protecting barriers.
One should realize that one does not meditate to go deeply into oneself and withdraw from the world. In buddhist yoga, even when meditating on chakras there is no introspection concentration; complete openness of mind is the essential point."
(Source >>, emphasis mine. Download PDF here >>)
In fact, complete openness to everything, extreme sorrow included, is the natural state of a Master at the level of existence called Binah. And the Lady Herself is just as open, receiving, and lovingly giving Herself to everyone without exception and reservation.
And the Master is one with Her.
In our 'One star in sight', the Magister Templi is described as "...the Master of the Law of Sorrow (Dukkha)." (VI.) and "Master of samadhi." (II.).
An adept, now a Master, has won the dynamic and all-inclusive dance with sorrow or suffering and has integrated everything (including sorrow or suffering) into her consciousness by seeing through it. And one way to do that (in my experience) is through repeatedly entering and re-entering the Absolute Truth via samadhi, thus seeing it clearly.
Heh, it is all just one elaborate joke, watching the world go by from up here, you see. People are raising stormy waves in perfectly calm seas. My Tantric Master used to say: "You are all just playing out your dramas!".
Or, as our Prophet has so eloquently put it: "...The Masters of Truth are the only happy men, though they constantly observe what men stupidly call Sorrow.". (Liber 73).
It is really liberating to see through suffering, very much so. Kind of lonely, though.
But it sure is fun! :)
And yet, one can not stay forever at this level. When the new Master has acquired enough fluidity and integrated the Understanding of other Masters into his (daily) awareness, it is time to move on.
Above the Abyss, there is no separation, meaning that the newcomer at the City of Pyramids is already aware of both Wisdom and Illumination. Only the focus differs.
And not before long, the focus from being Her, as it were, will shift on to......Him. And only the Mother can show you your Father, for only She really knows who and what He is.
The words lose their meaning right about here, I think. It is difficult to convey these experiences, to be sure. Initiation is a must; mere speculation will not do.
Let us just say that the more focus Master has on herself, the more Love she intends. And the more Love translates to more openness and surrender.
Liber B vel Magi comes to mind here: "And the Magus is Love..." (Liber B, 0).
What starts to happen (at least that's my experience and adepts from the Theravada Path share similar notions) is that the awareness and the Presence of Him/Love manifests more and more into everyday life awareness. According to the Theravada Path of four stages to Enlightenment, this starts to happen at the Anagami stage (third stage).
And the might of this Presence, the Presence of the One/Crown, sooner or later instigates what has in modern transpersonal psychology been dubbed as 'identity collapse'.
Leaving the usual drama and warnings and threats from our Holy books behind, this "collapse" is, at this level, a most joyous event. It is like finally being able to let go of, well, the Identity. And it 'feels' so good!
Our friends in Buddhist tradition call these experiences anatta and sunyata insights.
The identity collapse here "collapses" the identity of being Her and/or Him.
Beyond personal identity, beyond the identity of a soul, and even beyond the identity of the One (emanated as Father and Mother, Wisdom and Understanding, Bliss and Emptiness, Light and Dark and manifested as the One Child, Heruraha, Baphomet or any other "entity") - beyond all of that, there is that which is formless.
Formless here translates to essence-less-ness, emptiness or sunyata, and anatta or anatman (not-self).
One way of putting this:
"The very meaning of the 'Mahamudra - Great Perfection', refers to the true primordial state of every individual and not to any transcendent reality."
— Chogyal Namkhai Norbu
These experiences are so abstract that words convey not nearly enough!
From the practical side of things, the collapse discussed herein contributes to a really deep sense of peace (as no one is here to disturb the peace), clarity of perception, and freedom of expression or activity in a variety of ways.
Of course, even these experiences at this level do not last long, for there is an even deeper and more liberating neutral and natural Reality to be attained.....
......and here we must embark on the path that leads to Illumination through the state of consciousness called nirodha samapatti.
In Liber AL (III-67) this event is described as "the fourth ordeal" (emphasis mine, source >>):
"Through the fourth, ultimate sparks of the intimate fire."
"Beyond the one, how shall he pass on? What is this One, which is in every place the Centre of All? Indeed the logic-girders of our souls need lightening, if we would win to freedom of such Truth as this!
Now in the 'stones of precious water' the Light leapt clear indeed, but they were not themselves that Light. This sphere of the One is indeed Ra-Hoor-Khuit; is not our Crowned and Conquering Child the source of Light? Nay, he is finite form of Unity, child of two married infinities; and in this last ordeal the aspirant must go beyond even his Star, finding therein the core thereof Hadit, and losing it also in the Body of Nuit.
Here is no Path that he may tread, for all is equally everywhere; nor is there any sphere to attain, for measure is now no more.
There are no words to make known the Way; this only is said, that to him that hath passed through this fourth ordeal this Book is as 'ultimate sparks'. No more do they reflect or transmit the Light; they themselves are the original, the not-to-be-analysed Light, of the 'intimate fire' of Hadit! He shall see the Book as it is, as a shower of the Seed of the Stars!"
Love is the law, love under will.
More on this subject in the forthcoming commentary to Liber B vel Magi.
Check out also The Oath of the Abyss here >>
All blogs on the subject of Reality above Abyss, The after Abyss blogs >>