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Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Blockage?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Blockage

Becoming Aware of Resistances, Blockages, Wrong Beliefs and Fixed Positions that Cause Obscurations

In other words, understanding is a matter of clarity shining through the various manifestations, clarifying and dispelling obscurations and illuminating the truth. What is happening as we are clarifying is a rise in clarity. What is this rise in clarity? The whole field of experience, the whole soul, begins to become clearer. We become aware of the resistances and blockages, the wrong beliefs and fixed positions that cause such obscuration, dullness, and unclarity. And as we see them, we become clear about what they are and what they are about. As we become clear about them, we understand them and they are dispelled. Obscurations dissipate like clouds as clarity shines through. We discover more and more of the truth, and experience is illuminated. The truth begins to stand out and become manifest. This is the process we go through when we inquire. By understanding the experience through seeing its truth, we arrive at an objectivity about it. Arriving at this objectivity happens through clarifying our attitude about the experience as we clarify what the experience is. This process of recognizing the truth coincides with the soul herself, the consciousness, becoming clearer and more transparent, more luminous. We might not experience this directly as luminosity but as a greater intensity or as more specificity in what the experience is. Our awareness is now more intense, purer, clearer, and more lucid.

Reactions to the Absence of Love, to the Blockage of It, to the Non-Perceiving of It

A person who does not have a heart cannot hate, cannot be angry, cannot be hurt, cannot be jealous. Without love there is no such thing as jealousy, hurt, fear, hatred, or anger. All of these things are reactions to the absence of love, to the blockage of it, to the non-perceiving of it. To be aware of the real relationship means that there is always awareness of love. This never goes, in any relationship. There is always the lovingness, and love has understanding in it. Love has forgiveness and acceptance in it. Love has compassion, appreciation, pleasure, happiness, strength, and gratitude. All these are elements of love, and it is there all the time; it is part of our nature. The courageous heart is the heart that is always present, regardless of what happens. If your heart is present only if good things happen, your heart is not yet free, not actualized. You are still a coward, still afraid. You have a heart, but not yet a courageous heart. So to have a true relationship, a real relationship, means to manifest the courageous heart.

The Fullness of the Work is the Absence of Blockage

The fullness of the Work is not the same as the fullness people experience by filling holes. The experience of filling a hole is not usually experienced as a fullness, really. When somebody is filling your holes, it feels shaky and not really satisfying. It feels like a temporary kind of relief. There is a sense of grabbiness, of holding; you don’t want the other person to leave. You don’t want them to change the way they behave towards you. At a deep level, it’s actually a blockage, not an openness. The fullness of the Work is the absence of blockage. Sometimes a lot of holes come up at once, so it’s a little confusing. Usually, when somebody first comes to do the Work in the group, many holes are experienced at the same time. The purpose of the Work is to expose holes and let the person deal with these holes from within. We’re not trying to fill holes from outside.

The Positive Cause of Suffering Seen as the Blockage of Our Potential, Our Essence

The process of inner work has two threads: seeing the negative causes of suffering, and seeing the positive causes of suffering. The negative causes of suffering involve the negative experiences, often from childhood, that created suffering. What I call the positive cause of suffering is the actual blockage of our potential, our essence. The positive cause is the alienation from true reality. After a while the process of understanding involves these two threads working together. You understand personality and you understand essence. You understand your history and you understand your nature. You understand your mind and you understand your beingness. These two threads are inherently intertwined in our work in the Diamond Approach. When the essential qualities of your being are cut off and your bodily energies are suppressed or distorted, the suffering caused by your past cannot be touched by the real potential of your beingness. This is why our work on the liberation of our essential nature is crucial to addressing our suffering. Our essential nature is the joy, the contentedness, the pleasure, and the peace of our soul necessary to resolve our suffering. It’s not easy to understand how these two categories of the causes of suffering are actually both perpetuated by the lack of understanding. Until we inquire into our experience, we don’t consciously know about the patterns, identities, and reactivities that govern our life. Until we explore presence, we are not naturally aware of our beingness, our essence, our essential nature. So, again, the primary cause of our suffering is ignorance. We suffer because of the absence of awareness, the absence of understanding. The knowledge, the awareness, the understanding are primary in doing our work. Self-knowledge is not simply a matter of understanding your personality, your mind, and your history. Self-knowledge also means understanding your potential, your nature, your essence. Self-knowledge means coming to realize the nature of reality, the nature of truth.

The True Self Never Tries to Make Things Happen. It Does not Have a Particular Position

The orientation of inquiry is to inquire into your experience as it happens. As we do that, we notice an optimizing force that leads us to our true self. However, we also notice that the true self doesn’t say, “I want you to go toward your true self.” The true self does not operate with that intention. So we do not work with that intention; instead we want to harmonize ourselves with the true self, which is goalless, endless. This is very tricky. You can always say, “The true self is pure awareness, so let’s develop awareness.” Or you can say, “The true self is lovingness; let’s develop love.” The true self means no blockages, so you can say, “Let’s work on blockages.” Many teachings do exactly that, but the true self does not say any of these things. The true self never tries to make anything happen. It does not have a particular position. It embodies an attitude of complete allowing and freedom: Whatever arises is fine. The true self will just guide you toward understanding your experience, appreciating it, and moving on. Finding your true self is a good thing, but there are many ways of going about it. In the Diamond Approach, we don’t look for it; it happens as a natural consequence of our inquiry. If you trust the process of following your thread, the optimizing dynamism will manifest whatever is supposed to happen. You do not even need to have the concept of true self. The true self may arise, but you might not even call it the true self. Because if you say, “Let’s look for the true self,” you create a concept, which then becomes an ideal and a goal. This is the beginning of developing a spiritual superego, which uses spiritual ideals to evaluate you, but is a superego nonetheless, and then you are back where you started—at the same impasse.

The Very Existence of “I” is the Absence of Love, the Blockage and Distortion of Love

The first thing you need to know is that your personality or ego does not know how to love. It cannot love. When you say, “I love you,” it is always a lie, because the person who says, “I” cannot love, and doesn’t know what love is. The personality does not know how to love. The personality is the product of the lack of love, so how can it know love? The personality is what you usually think is you, what you call “I,” “myself.” When you say, “I,” it is a lie. “I” doesn’t love. “I” doesn’t know how to love. “I” is there because you don’t know how to love. “I” is there from the beginning because of the loss of love. The very existence of “I” is the absence of love, the blockage and distortion of love. The “I” knows how to need; the “I” does not know how to love. It is not possible. What we call “I,” our separate identity, is our self-image. Even if the self-image knows what love is, it does not have the love and cannot be a source of love. In fact, when there is love, love tends to melt away the “I.” The “I” relaxes and gets out of the way.

Vanity is the Specific Blockage Against the Channel of Living Daylight

The more you get in touch with the helplessness, the more you might also get in touch with a specific physical blockage against it, which is the same thing as holding on to the delusion of vanity, of separate doership. This blockage is a specific holding at the anterior fontanel (at the front of the head) which blocks the channel of Living Daylight. When we see through this delusion and surrender our striving and our belief in it, this channel opens up. Then we can experience the beginning of real holding, the beginning of blessing as a descent of light that is love. This loving light expresses the action of Being as it melts the rigidities and fixations of the soul. When this occurs, we see that vanity is the specific blockage against the channel of Living Daylight, because in believing in yourself as a separate doer, you are taking God’s place. In other words, vanity and striving are reflections of the position that one does not need real holding. You feel that you can do it on your own and so you don’t need nourishment—whether human or divine. It also means that you believe that you do not need grace, and therefore block it. Grace is the descent of Living Daylight, specifically in regard to dissolving boundaries, so it allows us to be held by the universe and to trust in it. When you connect with this level of reality, the degree of holding in the environment ceases to be an issue. The environment that allows us to dissolve is Being itself, and when we connect with that dimension of reality, we feel held no matter what situation we are in.

Facets of Unity, pg. 283

You Cannot Make Yourself Grow, You Can Only Cease to Interfere

We still don’t understand that our attitudes, ideas, and beliefs are actually responsible for our suffering. We pay lip service to this idea but we don’t know it completely and totally. So we continue in our old patterns. The work we do here is simply to see the picture completely, seeing exactly what it is you are doing and how that affects reality. This is the way that real freedom, actual change, will come about. To live in freedom and absolute fulfillment, we need a complete, radical shift, and such a shift can occur only when there is a complete understanding of what we are actually doing. All the work you do here is based on understanding what you do and how you interfere with the natural process. If you try to do anything other than understand the situation, your effort will be a blockage, a resistance, an interference. You cannot make yourself grow; you can only cease to interfere. You cannot make yourself happy; you can only stop your judgments. Growth and expansion are natural; they are the life force itself. And you cannot predict its direction.

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