Since the idea of a separate ego is just a mental construct, as illusory as a mirage, all choices and decisions occur spontaneously: they are actually Presence that appears as choices and decisions.
Any event that occurs in our existence is an invitation to recognize the ever-present resonance of Being-Awareness. So meditation as well, whenever it appears in someone’s life, is a hint of Presence. Like all other events, it occurs spontaneously and impersonally, without any separate ego being in charge of choosing whether to practice it or not.
Therefore, if someone enjoys doing meditation, why not? One has no choice anyway, since ‘one’ does not exist as a separate ego.
At times, meditation is regarded as a way to reach a state of balance, psycho-physical well-being, self-understanding, or a deep experience of inner silence and stillness: truly a very pleasant condition that can spare the practitioner a huge amount of unnecessary suffering. However, like any other state that can be reached over time, sooner or later even the deepest meditative peace is doomed to vanish under the pressure of more stressful situations marked by unrest, pain and loss, in accordance with the ever-changing nature of life.
At other times, meditation is seen as a means to achieve liberation. This stance turns meditative practices into a loop of endless seeking that reinforces the figment of a separate self that is always lacking something: in a catch-22 impasse, the ego seeks because it feels incomplete, and it feels incomplete because it seeks. The ‘seeker’ is too busy looking for liberation to realize that it is already here. So the seeking game is a game of lacking and suffering: as long as it lasts, the resonance of Being remains unnoticed, hidden in the background.
If it is no longer seen as a means to a future goal, meditation becomes a celebration of life. At any time we can celebrate life through whatever experience we come across: drinking a glass of fresh water when we are thirsty, looking up at the starry sky on a clear summer night, making love, smiling at a baby on the bus, singing under the shower, or dancing wildly until we lose all sense of time and place.
The specific way for meditation to celebrate life is by letting it explode in silence, without any attempt to control, judge or manipulate it.
Before a date, the two lovers put on their most seductive garments, in order to highlight the beauty of their own bodies. But later on, at the moment of making love, all clothes are removed and they remain undressed, totally laid bare. Just like a smart dress, meditation is an ornament of life, marvelously superfluous in its gratuitous magnificence. As a sexy outfit provisionally covers a naked body in order to unveil its beauty just when it is removed at the time of making love, so meditation is an ornament that ‘veils’ the nakedness of Being, just to disclose its dazzling effulgence.
Getting undressed does not produce nakedness (that has always been there, concealed under the clothes), just as meditation does not cause the radiance of Being, which is simply ‘unveiled’ when meditation itself unmasks its own exquisite irrelevance. Still, each and every sort of experience – feeling the caress of the wind on one’s skin, queuing at the post office, changing one’s baby’s diaper, shivering with cold, smiling at a stranger or reading these very words – is an ornament of life, an invitation to taste the flavor of presence.
The real issue here, is not so much what we do (meditating, talking or keeping silent), but rather the inescapable fact that in any case, consciously or unconsciously, all of us are sharing together the mysterious resonance of Being.
Meditation is optional; reality is unavoidable. Meditation is something we do; reality is something we are. Reality unfolds through and as any experience, sometimes as meditation as well. Yet, prior to meditating or not meditating, we exist and are aware.
Being-Awareness is evident, undeniable, too basic and immediate to depend on any meditative practice whatsoever: It is the timeless precondition for every experience to appear, including meditation itself.
And we are That.
If you are looking for your true self it can be only where you are. The play of the seeker is like looking for the darkness with a lamp
Prof. Mauro Bergonzi on a meeting with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj.
Prof Bergonzi will be present at the SAND 2016 gathering in Italy in August.