Rays Of The Absolute
March 26, 2015

The Legacy of Nisargadatta Maharaj:






Visit the work of Stephan Wolinsky

After Thought #29
May 13, 2010



 What’s happening?

Things are happening or not happening all the time.  The problem is the way things happen or do not happen is very different than the way we imagine things happen or do not happen. 

Things happen in a way we don’t understand; they happen in different ways than we think or imagine.  They happen in ways that we can never comprehend.

Human beings think they are so smart because they come up with ideas about how things happen or do not happen all the time.  And when they can’t find a good enough reason to explain why something happened or did not happen they create speculative stories to fill in the gaps of the “why”.  We love to create and indulge in our explanations, reasons and justifications as to why something happened or did not happen and we will go to extreme lengths to convince ourselves and others of those explanations.

Everything that is going to happen will happen and anything that is not going to happen will not happen; we cannot do anything about what’s happening or not going to happen.  We cannot prevent what is going to happen, and we cannot create what is not going to happen either.

There is no “you” that can play a role in making something happen or not happen.  Things happen or they don’t happen; period.

The you that you imagine yourself to be, arrives long after what’s happening, has occurred.  You are constantly arriving late to your so called present moment; the moment that appears to be happening.  What happens or does not happen in the present moment occurs before you arrive; you’re not really ever present for the moment or for what is happening or not happening, even though you might think that you are, or have been told so.  When you do finally arrive, the you that you imagine yourself to be spins a story of why, in a desperate attempt to organize what is un-organizable; to control what is uncontrollable.

Even though we constantly make up stories [philosophies, teachings and religions] to explain why something happens or does not happen, they are at best, sanitized speculations; they are at best words only, which exist in language only.  The explanation lives in language only.  At worst, they are conspiracies of denial.  They are personal editorializations; filtered versions of a selective viewpoint and understanding of reality, based on ideas about how things happen or do not happen. 

They may be our subjective experience of reality, but they are not reality itself.

If we really understood the depth of what’s happening or not happening, we could finally let go of pretending that we have any control over anything.  We could finally let go of imagining that we have some ability to affect what is happening or not happening.  We could dive deeply in the chaos of the Universe, prior to the appearance of creation.  Prior to the “I” that imagines it knows.

The more we can drop the narcissistic delusion of the “I”, especially the “I” that shows up in “I” spirituality, the more we could recognize that life happens or it does not happen independently of what we think, say or believe.  The more we would see that things happen or don’t happen in much grander ways than we could ever, possibly imagine. 

With awareness, we could focus more on letting go of our ideas about what we imagine needs to happen and let what’s going to happen, happen, while also ignoring what we imagine or fear might happen that will actually not happen; we could sit back and let things happen or not. 

We could let life Be.

Now, before your “I” mind runs away on some tangent about being reckless or irresponsible, or thinks that I’m encouraging us all to become radical victims of anarchy; I want to let you in on a very big secret.  It’s not some imaginary or delusionary secret about how to create or co-create your reality or get more money; to be more, do more or have more. It’s not about some short cut to enlightenment.  It’s certainly not some nonsense teaching based on mind made ideas of some “law of attraction” that will lead you to the perfect little life, that every “I” in us all, wants, needs and desires.  “I” won’t delude you.  “I” won’t lead you down that dead end path of your perceived psychology.  This is a simple secret that may or may not change how you see your life forever: 

What’s going to happen will happen.  What’s not going to happen will not happen.   How things happen or do not happen, have nothing to do with “you”.  They have nothing to do with the “I” that you think you are, because the “I” perceiver does not show up until after the event or action takes place.

The “I” has no power. 

There is no “I” that can claim doership; that has separate will or volition.  It is the one substance alone that is contracting or expanding that “produces” the appearance of an event, circumstance or situation that arises or does not arise in your so called life. 

Radical Spirituality is the realization that there is no “I” in the world that can take authorship or ownership, to what happens or does not happen in life.  Radical Spirituality is the realization that there is no world and there is no “I”. 

If something happens or does not happen, it’s because it was going to happen or it was not going to happen; regardless of what you might think or believe to be true. 

Radical Spirituality does not seek to understand mind made ideas of cause or effect to justify reality or outcome; to control perceived reality or outcome for its own means. 

Radical Spirituality does not seek reason or even understanding in a story of what is, was or will be that is spun by a delusional “I” mind; wrapped up as some pseudo, spiritual philosophy called Karma.

What is, is; or it’s not.  Radical Spirituality recognizes no relationships, other than the “One” substance that constantly arises and subsides.

What happens or does not happen, can only be perceived by an “I” that imagines it is separate from the One substance.  In the awareness of separation, in awareness of self consciousness, there will be an appearance of choice, will, volition, cause, effect or reason. 

When you slip into the gap there is no “I” and there is no happening or not happening.  Prior to happening or not happening, there is no “I”; stay there.  Prior to the explanation, justification or reason; just stay their.  To stay there, forget this attempt at explaining why something happens or does not happen; because it’s just another story and explanation. 

Prior to the “I”, and prior to the story, just stay there…


… inpspired by the work of Stephen H Wolinsky


the teachings of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj.

The Story Of YOU…
October 21, 2008



 “ YOU are always there.


The YOU that is always there,


is the ONE


that always goes unnoticed…”



Stephen H Wolinsky




YOU are always there.  You were there before you began searching, you were there while you are searching, and you will be there after you give up searching…


The fact that YOU are already there, is so blatant, it goes un-witnessed.  YOU are so oblivious to your Self, the real YOU that YOU are, that YOU look outside your Self instead.  YOU look to the stories about a YOU, instead of the real YOU that is always there.


The stories about YOU are very seductive; they have to be otherwise they would not make great stories.  The best of those stories turn into mythologies, dogmas, traditions or religions ~ stories about the birth of YOU, stories about the loss of YOU, stories about searching for YOU.  While those stories contain many experiences had by some YOU; some, even direct experiences or realization; it has now become a story which is not YOU.


YOU are not your story.  The story is happening in, or on YOU.  YOU are not the details of the story, the experiences or circumstances contained within that story.  When YOU spend a lot of time focused on the story of YOU; the labeling, the evaluating, the assessing, the judging and the placing significance or importance of certain details, ignoring other details within the story; trying to manipulate the story for good or for the bad, YOU create confusion; YOU start to identify with the story.


When YOU identify with the story, YOU lose touch with the YOU that YOU are.  By placing attention on the details of the story which has nothing to do with YOU, YOU are seduced by the pain and the pleasure of the story instead of the Self which YOU are, which is independent of the pain and the pleasure.  Spirituality and Psychology are infatuated by the story, through incest they create stories within stories; they create stories about the YOU in the story; stories about the pain and the pleasure.


When your attention is on the story of who YOU are, and the pain and pleasure that occurs within that story, YOU begin to place more significance on that story and its pain and pleasure, rather than the truth, which YOU are.  YOU become obsessed by the story.  In your neurosis, YOU begin to imagine that YOU are the story; not YOU.  YOU start to fantasize that YOU can create the story, change the story, understand the story, develop or resist the story.  YOU do your best to sanitize it, suppress it, and edit It, to some imagined likening and when it does not fit that likening, YOU go into denial of the story that was not YOU or true, to begin with, and when YOU can, YOU try to switch your present story for another story about YOU.  In most cases YOU become overwhelmed by the story and the endless details of the story; YOU become overshadowed by the you, YOU imagine yourself to be.


Once YOU are lost in the story: the imaginings, the illusions, the ideas, the notions, the perceptions, the understandings, the concepts and the drama contained within that story, YOU spend the rest of your time trying to find a way out of the story. 


If YOU are not a story, then what reason do YOU need to find your way out of it? 


If YOU are not your story, what reasons do you need to change it? 


If YOU are not the details, circumstances or situations within the story, then why place such importance on it? 


If YOU are not your story, then YOU are also not someone else’s story either, whether it is about the imagined YOU, or not. 


Who is more important; YOU or the story of YOU? 


What is more important; the story of YOU or YOU?


Who is the YOU?


What is the YOU?


The YOU that YOU are, is already free.  YOU cannot accept your freedom, because you are lost in the overwhelming details your story.  Spirituality and psychology, loves to endorse the story YOU; of how YOU got lost, of why YOU got lost, of when YOU got lost, of what and where YOU need to do/go in order to find, once again, the YOU that YOU always were.


If YOU are always were, then there is no need to go looking, especially out there.  If YOU always there, there is no need to do anything, be anything, achieve anything, gain anything, lose anything or find anything to the YOU, that YOU are.


How can YOU find something that was lost only in a story?


When the story of who YOU are, becomes more important than the realization of who YOU are, YOU become manipulated by the details of the story, you become a victim within the story. 


If the YOU that YOU are is already there, where is the need for conversion?


If the YOU that YOU are is already free, where is the need for salvation?


When the story of who YOU are becomes more important than the recognition of who YOU are, the story at once determines who YOU are, by emphasizing what YOU are doing or not doing in the story, rather than who YOU are Being.  The story of what YOU could be doing or not doing takes precedence over the simplicity of the YOU that exists in the present moment, now.


YOU are inherently perfect, now.  The degree, to which you experience the rhythm and flow of YOU, will be determined by the degree of awareness YOU have of YOU and its inherent perfection.  YOU can accept what is said about YOU; YOU can adopt a story about YOU, or YOU can simply be YOU.


YOU are ancient and unborn.  If YOU are unborn, YOU cannot die.  The purest of wisdom traditions suggested that water cannot wet YOU, fire cannot burn YOU, wind cannot dry YOU and iron cannot cleave YOU.  For to long, YOU have relied on external sources to validate who YOU are.  For to long YOU have depended on confirmation of an imagined YOU, defined by the story.  YOU define yourself by affirmations that exist only in the world of form and phenomena that serve only to entrench YOU; your milestones have become the millstones of pain and suffering.


YOU already know this.  YOU already know, that YOU are; what YOU are, YOU do not know.  YOU already sense that the story of YOU is not the real YOU; otherwise YOU would not always be looking.  YOU just need to stop looking out there.  That does not mean that YOU cannot enjoy the story for what it is.  There will always be a story.  As long as YOU have a body/mind, there will be a story.  It is possible to be in the story but not of it.  It is possible to participate out there, in an infinite number of ways while in the story; as long as your attention is on YOU.


Now is the time to get to know the real YOU, because that’s all that there was, is and will ever be.  As you get to know the real YOU, YOU begin to let go of the story of YOU.  YOU become more and more detached from the story and the impact of the YOU, living in that story.  YOU let go of the filters of doubt, which always creates confusion, the confusion disturbs your clarity and when you lose clarity, YOU lose the inner peace that YOU are.


The inattentiveness of your attention gets caught up out there. In a moment of hypnosis, YOU temporarily redefine your understanding, perception and experience of who YOU are, through the story of who YOU are.  Who YOU are; what YOU are; when YOU are; where YOU are; and why YOU are; are irrelevant, because YOU are YOU.  The divine YOU manifests all-ways, in everyday happenings.


Now is the time to trust who YOU are.  As YOU trust who YOU are, YOU will no longer be dependent on the story or anything contained within the story for your safety, security or freedom. YOU will Be.  YOU will recognize the freedom YOU are, even though YOU appear to be in the story.  YOU are always YOU, and YOU are always there.  What ever YOU do and where ever YOU go, YOU can Be your Self.  But this is just another story about how YOU became me; and YOU are not the story, YOU are YOU!









(c) Copyright – Michael Sean Symonds. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.


The Spell of Practice…
October 16, 2008


“ You are always there.  The you that is always there, is the one that always goes unnoticed…” 


Stephen H. Wolinsky



There comes a time in a practice where one often, simply by tenure of experience, realizes certain things about ones practice; ones motivation within the practice, ones limitations, and ones understanding and misunderstanding within the practice.  Often the purpose of the practice may be questioned, and once in a great while the direction of the path itself will be investigated.


I think it is safe to say that most of us begin the journey of seeking Who We Are by listening too and learning from others.  There can be great benefits in spending quality time with teachers, mentors and friends who are also pursuing with courage, risk and passion the discovery of Who They Are.


Personal tenure of practice often provides a certain comfort and spontaneous levels of detachment as a result of multiple exposures to situations and circumstances within that practice lending to us the wisdom of experience. 


Within any practice there can also be many traps.  Significant, hidden, distractions that take the form of assumptions that serve as obstacles in the finding out of Who We Are.  When the pursuit of the practice itself is substituted for, and overshadows the deeper quest in the finding out of Who We Are, we lose ourselves not only to the story of the practice, but also Who We Are. 


The practice is a practice.  In itself the practice has nothing to do with Who We Are.  The practice is a tool, to be used to help navigate the personal, self engendered challenges we have and face that prevent us from being Who We Are.  The practice is a temporary resource, a tool to yoke our attention and senses, from “out there”, to “in here”.    


We are Who We Are, regardless of the practice.  The practice does not change, influence or impact at any level Who We Are, Who We Were and Who We always will be.      


The longer I meditate, the more I realize the distinctions and the unrealistic expectations, placed on the practice; any practice.  As a long term meditator of 19 years, I have for instance given up the notion and necessity that “I have or had to stop my thoughts”.  After a few years of meditation, it became very clear through experience, that thoughts will always come and go ~ or not; that successful meditation has nothing to do with stopping, changing, fixing or even dare I say it, improving ones thoughts. 


More importantly said the practice, in this case meditation, allows the field of attention to notice for the first time not “this” or “that”, but the ever present silence that surrounds the “this” and “that”; in this case “this” being the thought.  To notice first hand the silence that was there before the thought, the silence that was there during the thought and the silence that will be there after the thought has long gone.


But the cut does not stop there when it comes to investigation of the assumptions we place on the practice ~ any practice.  The cut must be deep and precise.  It must penetrate and sever all assumptions, all ideas, all notions, all understandings within the practice. 

As we dig deeply, the enquiry must uncover the heart of the concept ~ every concept; concepts that entangle and concepts that mislead.


My study of the work of Stephen Wolinsky and one of his most significant teachers, Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, has provided much new fodder to revisit, revise and refine some of the assumptions and learning’s of the concepts, I have gathered so easily over the last 20 years or so of my “spiritual journey”. 


To be clearer, I have been blessed (?) with “the choice” to challenge and examine every frame of reference the intellect can provide; to distinguish between the witness and the intellect, to discern between what is real, and the abundance of numerous, nonsense teachings that are continually regurgitated from teacher to student to teacher.  To question the very validity and basis the dogmas that most religions and for that matter, Spirituality hide behind or within.


In the West we frequently get caught up in “the doing”.  The emphasis on doing becomes so relevant in conventional reality that we wrongly assume that Being itself, can be influenced by doing.  The practice is doing.  Any attempt by the subject “I” to influence, gain, attain, remove or harness Being, is redundant.  Doing is not the basis of Being; Being is the basis of doing.  To imagine that any doing will in some way influence or impact the nature of Being is, well… ludicrous!


When spirituality becomes organized with a dogma or path, we embrace and then emphasize doing over Being.  What was at once innocent becomes systemized, regulated and controlled.  Spirituality is Not University.  There are no perquisites for realization.  No certifications or tenures, no achievements are needed to qualify in order to Be.   When the practice is codified there is a danger that we can lose touch with the intention behind the practice as we shift our focus to attainment and gain.  Our attention is caught up in the doing. 


It does not matter which level of attainment you imagine you have reached within your practice.  It does not matter if you have practiced meditation for one year or twenty, or whether you’ve mastered your first or sixth level Ashtanga, or that you or someone else calls you a Grand Master.  While this may be of importance to the “I” mind, while this may have some validity and relevance in the world of form and phenomena, within the very system of origin that created it; it has no relevance, no stature, no bearing on the finding out of Who You Are. It is still, only, ever, about doing.


You are Who You Are.  The you that you are, was always there, you just did not notice it.  Your attention was rapped up, out there, focused on the doing rather than the Being.  The practice was a way to break the spell of achievement, to abandon the doing, while noticing the Being.  The practice was not the goal.  There never was a goal or target to be reached, controlled or mastered.  Realization is not the goal, for the self cannot master the Self; the self has no mastery over the Self. 


You are the goal.  You were the goal before you started seeking, you were the goal while you are seeking, and you will be the goal after you give up seeking.  Freedom lies in the Being, not in the doing.  It’s ok to have a practice.  It’s ok to have a good life, to be more peaceful, to enjoy life more fully in the Being rather than the doing.  When we take care of Being, the doing will spontaneously be expressed.  When we take care of Being, effortless doing will naturally be experienced, Being and doing become one.  Then we realize there was no Being and there is no doing…



“ You are always there.  The you that is always there, is the one that always goes unnoticed…” 


Stephen H. Wolinsky





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