The Tools of the Atmosphere of No Self
Prior to reading the Article, I would like to add a quick note. In order for more context and background to understand this meditation requires fully reading the book The Blueprints to Union by Brother Dominick, as well as spending time meditating via direct experience in the No Self Atmosphere. They go together and sharpen each other like swords, as reading the book can provide invaluable direct and experiential insights that can be deepened and used in the Meditation. While insights and experiences that happen in Meditation, are usually covered and discussed in depth in the Book.
The Tools of the Atmosphere of No Self
You’re basically getting to know stillness, being, rest, surrender, getting to know how the ego operates by watching it, and cultivating a Love of meditating in this manner where there is an inner restructuring to make room for God to reveal Himself within and without.
The first tool I want to speak of is this ‘sense/seeing/feeling/being’ with this notion that each of the senses, the body, awareness, thoughts are all happening on their own with no ‘you’ in any of it.
Though this is only one of the many tools/aspects of this work, it is extremely powerful in breaking up the deeply held illusion-based egoic and subconscious notions that it is ‘you’ that is doing or having or experiencing these aspects. To really master this single tool, means to really sit with this in silence, with this notion that all these aspects are happening without a ‘you’ because ‘you’ is just an illusory thought.
Sometimes, the hang up is…that ‘you’ are the awareness…..but that’s another subtle identity, and needs to be deconstructed by seeing that awareness is also happening on its own, there’s nothing
you can do to be aware or unaware, it’s all happening naturally and effortlessly on its own and also isn’t ‘you’. This too, has to be sat with so it is deepened and really felt, in a way that it deeply sinks into the depths of your apparent ‘being’.
This whole tool, which is used with eyes closed in The No Self Atmosphere, is also to be used in an eyes open Atmosphere of No Self Meditation of the contemplation of the appearance of ‘outer’ reality. It will be called from here on out in an up-and-coming video meditation called, The Atmosphere Of Unified Outward Appearances. While The No Self Atmosphere is a deconstruction of that which seems to be within, i.e. body, senses, thoughts, feelings, moods, awareness, being, consciousness, and so forth, The Atmosphere Of Unified Outward Appearances takes the same approach for the deconstruction of the ego’s filters, biases, divisions, and illusions that are superimposed over outward reality.
In a nutshell, it is simply sitting with any outwardly view, though the view outdoors is recommended because of the bigger contrast the sky gives, and seeing in the following way.
See how the wind is happening on its own but it is not you, same with trees, sky, ground, floor, wall, window, light, shadows; everything that is seen is happening with no you, but that
seeing is also the same as all those other things, also happening on its own with no you.
Trees are just a ‘no you’ appearance, which is united to sky, which is a ‘no you’ appearance,’ which is united to grass, which is a ‘no you appearance,’ which is united to movement of branches in the wind,’ which is a ‘no you appearance,’ which is united to seeing, which is a ‘no you appearance,’ which is united with the physical eyes, which is a ‘no you appearance’, which is united to awareness, which is a ‘no you appearance,’ which is united to being, which is a ‘no you appearance,’ and on and on the appearances appear. But, see if you can really find division and/or separation from any and all appearances.
They may have the ‘appearance’ of different qualities, for example the sky appears to stay still, while clouds move, but ‘stillness’ and ‘movement’ are themselves appearances. Without stillness, you couldn’t possibly know what movement is. Without movement, you couldn’t possibly know what stillness is. Yet, these two are not separate from each other; they might appear to be separate, however ‘separation’ is just an appearance that is not is separate from the one who is looking at appearances. And the one who is looking, is not separate from appearance, because ‘looking’ itself is just an appearance. It may have specific qualities, qualities which are also appearances, but ‘differences’ are merely appearances and they are also not separate from the sense of seeing, which, as just stated, is itself an appearance.
It’s simply appearances all the way up, and all the way down, and the act of contemplating and seeing if there really is any separation in appearances is another tool. We will speak more on the qualities and depth of The Atmosphere Of Unified Outward Appearances in a separate article and future book, but for now, let us return to The Atmosphere of No Self, which has a number of tools used to deepen that unraveling into Union process, and focusing again on the tool of seeing all inner aspects, all things that the ego thinks or feels is ‘me’ or ‘I’ as being deconstructed by its opposite, ‘All these things are happening without a ‘me’ or ‘I’ all on their own.
To reiterate again briefly, it is sitting with and establishing this understanding and feeling sense that sitting is happening with no sitter, the eyes seeing the black behind closed eyelids is happening without a seer, the ears are hearing without a hearer, the lungs breathing without a breather, a body is body’ing without a bodier; there is a sense of awareness of all these things without an awarer.
That’s the Master Key for this tool in that whole paragraph above. In order for that master key to open the depths that it will eventually open, requires deeply penetrating into it by sitting with it, examining it, feeling it, intuiting it, sensing it, breathing it, and living it in this exact way, the
longer it is established, the deeper it will penetrate and break up the false illusion status quo of all of these false dichotomy illusion constructs that the ego has habitually programmed into place.
The second aspect of this single tool, is to take this same tool into deep sleep, take this master key into the ‘sleep is about to happen’ process, just like is done in the P.M. Meditation. What then happens is that, when sensing occurs in this way, appearances all united but all happening on their own, when this is established just prior to sleep, it takes on a life of its own, going deep into the subconscious and into the dream realms, and it continues to deconstruct all of those hidden aspects that appear to exist in the unconscious dimension of the subconscious. It is a very powerful aspect and tool of The No Self Atmosphere meditation and a number of people have broken through into the manifestation of Union specifically from establishing a deep rooted understanding and experiencing of seeing all the inner appearances as happening on their own without a ‘you’ in any of it. For some of these people, the breakthrough happens in the dream state and when the body wakes up, Union can already be spontaneously there. For others, it breaks up so much of the false illusions that it is a lot easier to deconstruct the rest of the illusory daydream in the day time hours.
I will give you an anecdotal experience from my own establishing of this sense of being without a be’er by spending time in The No Self Atmosphere. After my first ungluing of the ego experience and a first initial dip, or glimpse, into Union, it took a while to figure out the mechanics of how this all works, and a year of being stubborn and not listening to my hermit teacher. But when I finally did listen, he laid out a similar example to how this tool is being laid out here before you.
When I finally got over the ‘how do I get back to that Union experience’ false construct and fully let it go, one night there was a deeply established P.M. Atmosphere of No Self Meditation that carried over into deep sleep. And though deep sleep was there in place, it had an odd sense to it, almost as if ‘I’ was on the cusp of breaking up the old status quo ego day dream filters.
Just like that, somewhere between deep sleep and the first initial arising of the first inklings of conscious awareness, there was a sense of rapid awakening, and I lay there, seeing, being aware of the entirety of the whole structure of the ego, buzzing around literally like a swarm of flies, each fly being a different illusory construct. That whole egoic structure was now like a mask removed from my face and clearly visible from the perspective of an observer of it, but not of a partaker.
There was deep inclined intuitive knowing, that at this point, to take any position of what was happening, was to allow one of those flies to get its grasp back on the face of the purity and nakedness of egoless awareness. It seemed like there were thousands of them, each a different illusory construct as in, likes, dislikes, biases, positions on things, feelings about things, Angry I, Sad I, Existential Hatred I, Forgiving I, Mistrustful I, Seeking I, Questioning I, why God why I, and so forth.
That knowledge that positionless Being was a doorway to Union was firmly in grasp and it was seen right then and there, that when this ungluing takes place, the naked purity of awareness itself unfiltered and unmasked, simply needs to surrender, allow, and be in this soft and pleasant ego-unglued-positionless, for it to be that pure drop of water that falls downward into the heart, where the doorway to Union is already opened and waiting.
This specific tool has enormous depth, and yet has the exact and precise brevity that works like this: the more time and experience that is spent with it, the quicker it will lead to more depth, grace, and fruition of it. That perspective, that way of seeing/being/feeling/intuiting/allowing it to penetrate beingness/bodiness/constructs/subconscious/soul/etc reaches maturity when it becomes deeply established and known and sensed and has deconstructed a number of the false constructs all on its own just by allowing it to deeply, and richly, be that way.
For some who undergo the unraveling into Union, the above alone was the master key, for others it was another one of the keys that establishes The Atmosphere of No Self, and still for everyone who has had Union manifest, it is mostly getting to know all the tools of this method and shifting, or switching, between them whenever necessary.
The next tool that establishes the No Self Atmosphere is watching the thought streams, and I mean really becoming aware of them. We have grown up so habitually inclined to filter reality through them, that we have become unaware of them and how they influence, divide, separate and are the cause of the majority of all issues, sin, regrets, psychological brokenness, ideals, self justifications, and the list goes on and on, to no end in sight. And yet, if you can just have a slight shift of seeing the whole structure of the ego, in a certain way, with certain tools, for a certain amount of time, the whole of it is eventually realized to be an unreal imagined daydream.
In the beginning the people I work with have a hard time becoming aware of these thought streams, so what I ask is to sit down for 15 minutes in solitude, silence, with a pen and paper, and to literally write down each stream of thought on that paper. Sometimes for those 15 minutes, some people with more active jumpy minds can lay out 50 or more thought streams. Others sometimes struggle to get to 15, just because the act of becoming aware of the thought streams alone starts to settle the mind down. It’s almost like this whole time there has been a thief living in your house, always hiding in the shadows and stealing tiny things from you that you never noticed. And since you have not been aware of him, he has been pretending to be you to the mail man, to the neighbors; to anyone who stops by and knocks on the door, that thief who is not you is the one who has been doing all the talking.
But now, becoming aware of the thief by looking for his footprints, listening to where he might be hiding, watching attentively the surroundings of your home, it is getting harder for him to parade openly around the house, so he slows his roll a bit, and becomes more cautious of becoming exposed, which in this case translates to the stream of thoughts slowing down a bit, and becoming much more self-conscious.
I usually ask for an unfiltered set of thought stream reports, even if there are swear words, lustful images, anger, jealousy, hatred, whatever, it should all be unfiltered and included. So, sitting down for those 15 minutes and writing down the thought streams, one after another, usually ends up looking like something similar to this:
- I hate the dentist but I really have to go and get this root canal. Sigh, I’ve already put it off for so long but just can’t get myself to go.
- I’m hungry, think I’ll try and make a sandwich if the bread isn’t moldy by now
- Actually I should probably get some groceries for the rest of the week, but I’m just so tired and lazy today. Don’t even want to do this report and it’s pretty stupid if you ask me. What’s the damn point anyway?
- I still have the tree that’s growing in between my fence and the neighbor’s fence, but it’s on his side and he still hasn’t done anything about like I asked him for months already. Lazy piece of crap.
- Ah, okay…I see what this is doing….I’m becoming aware of the thought streams…maybe I shouldn’t have called my neighbor a piece of crap. He’s always working overtime just to support his family.
Though I have just listed the first five, I usually ask for a total of 15 thought streams. Now usually when I receive these thought streams, I send a Q & A breakdown of each thought, in a sense we go into a Socratic Method of breaking down each one to see if its real or not and to do a living deconstruction of each, of which I will speak of more here after wrapping up this section.
So, returning to watching the thought streams, you are learning to cultivate an awareness of the content of thought, or content of the ego, and doing so means to really deeply sit with this and spend the time doing so. Just like the first tool we spoke of, the same applies to this tool in that, the more time is spent really sitting with this and doing this, the richer it gets and the more depth it provides, which will result in a number of fruits that the tree of this practice will eventually bear. What we are ultimately aiming for is a richness and hyperawareness of all of the egoic constructs and how they play out on the ego screen in front of the head.
Passive versus active thoughts is how this tool of Awareness evolves, in that, though we sit in The Atmosphere of No Self passively and in quiet solitude, we are mostly in this manner becoming aware of these passive thought streams that arise, one after another. When this practice becomes rich enough, we start to notice the egotism and false constructs that tend to play out when we are actively in the world while interacting with others, at work, around friends, in relationships of various sorts, be it family members, children, significant other and so forth.
This is the beauty of the life experiences that we come across, that they become experiences that are teachers, to help us notice which false illusion ego constructs we are filtering these experiences with, in order to deconstruct them and let them go by seeing that they are in place using awareness, and then by seeing that they are not even real and letting them go entirely, which allows us to come from a more loving, nondual, genuine place of being, allowing, listening, and understanding the experience we find ourselves in.
Deconstructing the thought streams is another tool that goes hand in hand with becoming aware of the thought streams. When sitting in No Self Atmosphere and being vividly aware of each thought stream as it arises one after another, we then start to deconstruct them using a variety of subset tools that fall under the deconstruction process, and they are as follows:
- Being aware of them, means that these thought streams are not that which is aware of them. We gain, in a sense, more separation and space from the thoughts as they occur, as the watching is happening. This is something to check and see for yourself. See where thoughts happen, and then in contrast see where the awareness and watching of these thoughts happens. Are they the same? Is there any distance between the two? What are the differences, if there are any? While I am not asking you to email me any answers to these questions, I leave them here as open ended investigations. As the process of unraveling into Union deepens, these questions begin to be answered as direct experiential insights.
- Seeing that Thoughts are inherently not real. Ever find yourself in a classroom daydreaming? Then something or someone, perhaps the teacher, snaps you back to reality. This is what we are doing in this whole process is to see how you’ve been living a life of daydreams, daydreaming that you exist, daydreaming that you are separate from God, daydreaming that you aren’t good enough for Union, daydreaming a vast array of unreal programs, constructs, mental habits, justifications, and worldly gross disgusting mental brokenness that you’ve taken on in a variety of ways and believed to be real. So now we entering a habitual living and seeing that none of these thoughts are real. We are choosing to no longer believe what the ego says, or that the ego even itself is real.
- Deconstruction, using a subset of the tools, includes the following: Seeing that Thoughts are not real, as each thought stream arises, one by one, each one is deconstructed by seeing that it is a separate appearance and flavor from awareness, from seeing, from hearing, from breathing, from being, from life itself. Seeing that all of these thought streams are make belief day dreams, and that there is a choice to no longer believe in any of them.
- The ego itself is not real, but in order to realize this, requires a deep knowledge of seeing what the ego is, what it does, how it operates, where it arises, what it consists of, and we get to know all of this by sitting with it and being aware of it. Eventually as this matures, there will be a seeing and understanding that the whole structure of the ego, is itself just a thought, an unreal imagined construct that can now no longer be believed in. The thinker of thoughts is just a thought. The one who is seeing the thoughts, was also imagining itself to be something real and tangible, but is actually just another belief, just another thought that can also be seen and also no longer believed in. So, who is the one that is no longer believing in this ego? Well, at that point we can easily revert to the seeing, that even thoughts are occurring on their own, and there is no thinker of thoughts.
Surrender is also an aspect of deconstruction of thoughts, but how does one surrender? If you start to become aware of how falling asleep happens each night, which is part of the process of taking The No Self Atmosphere into deep sleep, then the surrender of entering into sleep will teach you about surrender, and this is what we will apply by gently and softly bringing more and more of surrender into the deconstruction of thoughts process.
Let’s say the current thought stream that is arising is about a job interview for a new job that’s coming up in a few days. You’ll first realize that the thought itself is a daydreamt unreal projection. When the interview actually does happen, it will be real, actual, a present moment experience of being and experiencing the interview live. However, the thought stream of that interview which is not here yet, is itself an unreal illusion. Breaking down and deconstructing the thought stream further, you’ll notice that it will have a variety of associations with it, in terms of tensions in the body, feelings of excitement and anticipation, perhaps some nervousness and fear. So now, not only are we deconstructing the unreal thought stream, but we also now need to work on deconstructing its associations, and we do that by surrendering all of them. Letting go and surrendering any of the tensions in the body. Perhaps the stomach is tightened along with the back, spine, and shoulders. So we take a deep breath and exhale deeply along with loosening and surrendering all the tightness as if preparing the body for falling into sleep. Only difference here being, is that instead of sleep, we are maintaining a degree of awareness and alertness in order to continue the deconstruction process. The contrast is as follows. In sleep we lose consciousness and alertness when surrender to sleep happens, whereas in The Atmosphere of No Self, awareness is allowed to enter into a disidentified and deconstructed state of conscious surrender.
We do the same with the excitement, anticipation, nervousness, anxiety, and fear. One by one, they are let go of and surrendered by feeling them, seeing that they are there, seeing that there is a choice to identify with or not identify with, gently just letting go of each, and we can also shift back into the first tool we spoke of in this article. Each of these apparent feelings is each happening on its own, with no me in any of it. When a feeling such as anxiety is seen as something that comes and goes, something that is its own apparent taste and flavor of experience, but something that isn’t you, then there is at least the conscious choice to choose to no longer identify with this feeling. So we are bringing in the process of disidentification into everything that is seen, felt, experienced, and eventually into the seer and the experience as well.
So when a thought stream and all its associations is deconstructed using these various tools, then the next thought stream arises, and we repeat the deconstructing process all over again. Just like with the other tools, the more they are used, the deeper the whole undoing and unraveling process goes, and just like any master craftsman, you become a master of deconstructing all these things you once thought were you. Just like Ludwig van Beethoven mastered all the tools and aspects of musical composition, or Michelangelo mastered all the tools and aspects of painting, you are using time, experience, and practice to master the tools that will lead to Union.
Taking on a life of its own. As you learn to do this, you are also learning to get used to the feeling eventually, that it isn’t ‘you’ who is doing this, but that this whole process is taking on a life of its own, where shifting between the variety of tools becomes natural, deep, known, a certain amount of depth, insights, and mastery is there, and at the core of it all, it’s a process that is always happening on its own without you doing any of it. This is really the heart of the matter and also takes time, practice, and sitting in this manner for this stage of the meditation to reach a maturity, and it is usually here where Union manifests. When there is no more you to be found, a nakedness of experience, of being, of reality arises; these become the hinges of the door of Union which open when the drop of water of experience is completely free to fall into the downward stream of surrender, from the head into the heart.
Awareness resting in itself. With the whole Atmosphere of No Self having taken on a life of its own with no ‘you’ in it, that same awareness which was once imprisoned by the ego, by the addictions of outwardly appearances, by the lure of the flashy and shiny things of the world, is now gently resting in itself, no longer identified with anything that was once outwardly, no longer even identified with itself. In this unencumbered, unidentified restful freedom, we are in a cultivation of positionless being and resting, so that Grace allows this drop of water to fall downward, from the head to the heart, where the Ocean of God is waiting for its Prodigal Son to return home.
The arising of Soul attributes is what will start to manifest in this process as well. As we deconstruct the various dualities and egoic constructs, they start to be replaced with a variety of attributes that we then use to navigate life. Where once there was rigidity and grasping, instead we manifest into allowing. Where once there was confusion and mistrust, now there is knowledge and trust. Where once there was grasping of past or future constructed thought streams, now there is the Now. Where once there was an imbalance of Doing, now there is a falling in love and surrender into Being. Each of these attributes will start to manifest one by one as aspects of the Soul and God’s Union. Each of these also requires more in depth breaking down and getting to know on an individual basis, as they are all inherently connected and are aspects of Union anyway. For example in order to allow requires trust, in order to trust requires allowing, in order for these both requires Being in them, or with them, all of which is always available in the present moment always, and yet each are merely appearances which are all united in Union anyway, but deeply going into them and allowing these attributes to express themselves in various ways, both passive and active, helps in the overall Union process to manifest itself accordingly.
Falling in Love with the No Self Atmosphere allows Love to flower not only for the meditation and the process into Union, but also allows for all these things I once thought were me, but are not, to be constructed in a loving manner. It’s a self Love that allows a surrender of self into God, a love for all the beautiful attributes that flower, a Love for Being, for allowing, for trust, for evolution, and Love for God, and for others. A Love that is nurtured and grown, a Love that eventually reveals its own source, when Love is cultivated in the depths of a No Self Atmosphere Meditation which has reached depths of maturity, we then have the tools necessary to attune and find the source of Love within, the place within from where Love arises, and we complete and find another secret of God’s Union, Love with is Omnipresent when it is seen to be impersonal, it manifests itself as everywhere, as Omnipresent God is Omnipresent Love.
When Cultivated Love is Genuine, invite Christ to do the rest. For a fraction of people who cultivate this unraveling into Union process, there are a variety of hang-ups and sometimes stagnation, something I will go more in depth in a future article. However, as always, one of the Master Key Solutions is to invite the Master himself into the Atmosphere of No Self to resolve any of these places of feeling stuck, stagnated, or lost. This is a living and tangible connection that can occur by asking Christ to come and clear out these cobwebs of illusion and to reveal the source of Love within. It may take a while for this to manifest, but when this invitation comes from the depths of Being that are revealed in the matured No Self Atmosphere, they are always answered in time.
When the Master eventually comes, and finds the inner temple clear, emptied, peaceful, and the false self deconstructed, the evolutionary transformation into Union and further transformation can become like greased lightning in its speed and capacity.
What is the goal or end game? Soon as you’ve asked, you’ve left the positionless and taken the position of ‘I’ want to ‘know’ some sort of ‘answer’ to this ‘question.” In Union we reach the end of questions, and learn to live in and as that Union, and there is no end to that. It is endless lessons, endless depths, endless Love, endless evolution not only of Union itself, but of a vast array of the Soul and Union attributes that come with Union. Years I ago I wondered deeply about this question, but then Union answered with newfound depths, newfound surprises around corners once unseen, years later I laugh at the humor in that question, seeing how joy and laughter themselves are yet to be explored to their core depths. In Union, it is the end of the false, and the beginning of the real, in transcendence of both.