Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom
Excerpts about Absolute Dimension
Absolute Ground Posited in Various Teachings
Each teaching posits a final or absolute ground of Being that forms the irreducible simplicity of true nature. We refer to this ground as the absolute dimension of Being. The understanding of this ultimate true nature of the self and everything differs in subtle ways from one teaching or philosophy to another. In Christianity, it is the father who is the inscrutable darkness; in Kabala, it is the ain (nothing) or ain sof (infinite); in Sufism, it is the divine Essence; in Buddhism, it is emptiness (sunyata) or Buddha nature (tathagatagarbha); in Taoism, it is the Tao or the nothing; in Vedanta, it is the Brahman or absolute self; in Kashmir Shaivism, it is Shiva; and so on. The spiritual quest becomes that of the soul integrating this ultimate nature as its inner nature, source, and sometimes its identity.
The Point of Existence, pg. 439
From the Absolute Dimension We See that Radiance is the Way the Absolute Manifests Its Perfections
We can say that the Absolute is the unmanifest completeness and Brilliancy is the manifest completeness. Hence the Absolute is the unmanifest synthesis and Brilliancy is the manifest synthesis. Thus, Brilliancy is like the manifest Absolute. And it is in fact the radiance, or the brilliance, of the Absolute. If we go to the Absolute dimension, we see that radiance is the way the Absolute manifests its perfections. Its first manifestation is its pure radiance, its completeness, its intelligence. This, then, is the manifest presence of Brilliancy. So the Absolute is the synthesis of all essential aspects before manifestation. Brilliancy is the synthesis of all essential aspects after manifestation. Both of them are complete: One of them is absolutely dark, one of them is absolutely bright. The Absolute is complete fecundity, complete darkness, complete blackness, while Brilliancy is complete brilliance, complete light, complete whiteness. This is really the difference between the unmanifest and the manifest.
Brilliancy, pg. 33
In the Absolute Dimension the Absolute is Transcendent to all Manifestation
The dimensions of the journey of descent represent different degrees of the integration of the forms of manifestation into the unmanifest absolute. The unfoldment starts with the absolute dimension, where the absolute is transcendent to all manifestation, and moves to greater and greater integration of the manifest world, until it arrives at their total coemergence and nonduality. At the same time, each of these dimensions reveals a particular relationship of the absolute to manifest reality. By experiencing and understanding each of these objective relationships, we recognize something fundamental about the absolute truth, and its significance to the soul and the totality of Reality. This understanding in turn facilitates a more complete and thorough realization of the absolute as the ultimate nature of Reality.
The Inner Journey Home, pg. 416
Sensing the Absolute as an Expanse, as a Vast Infinite Black Space
Because the absolute is not simply nonbeing, we experience it as a field, an expanse, and not simply nonbeing. To understand this we need to make a particular differentiation explicit. We have been using two terms interchangeably, namely absolute and absolute dimension. Strictly speaking, the absolute is the ultimate nature of Reality, and it is beyond dimensions; for dimensions are the experience of manifestation. Yet, we do experience the absolute as a dimension, boundless and infinite, an infinity that contains and holds all manifestation including the other boundless dimensions. We can say that the absolute is the unmanifest, the ultimate truth and mystery of Being, beyond all dimensions and qualities. But when it begins to manifest appearance, this manifestation appears as if in an expanse, an infinite and boundless expanse, that looks like black space. Manifestation appears always in the context of time and space. It always possesses an expanse in time and space. Therefore, when we witness appearance from the stance of the absolute we see an expanse appearing in a more vast, dark expanse, the absolute. We have the sense of the absolute as an expanse, as a vast infinite black space. The absolute appears in this perception as a boundless dimension that underlies all other dimensions. But in reality the absolute is beyond space and time, for it is beyond manifestation.
The Inner Journey Home, pg. 394
The Effects of the Presence of the Absolute Dimension in Conjunction with the Logos
At other times we feel an immeasurable depth and a profound stillness, and experience ourselves as the true nature of everything, but a truth that is continually clothing itself with the creation. We experience ourselves as the source of all manifestation, and the manifest world as a flowing robe that we wear. The logos here is the apparel of the absolute that reveals the treasures hidden in its inscrutable depths. We are the truth, and all of reality is our ornament. The world is alive, breathing with the dynamism of the logos; and the world is real, expressing the truth of true nature. Such majesty and such beauty of appearance are the effects of the presence of the absolute dimension in conjunction with that of the logos.