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Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Creativity?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Creativity

Creativity and True Nature

If you recognize what it is that you are coming from right at this second, you will recognize your true nature and the nature of everything. When you realize that, then you realize that you are not in the world. It is actually like the world is not you. If you recognize your true nature that is constantly creating what you see, then you realize that all that you see is in that true nature; that everything you see – the whole world, is in you, not the other way around. This process of creativity is seen then as obvious and normal – there is nothing special about it. It is happening all the time; it is happening to everyone and to everything in every second. You don’t see it because you are accustomed to thinking that you are a body that continues in time.

Creativity Happens When the Mind is Touched by the Now

At the beginning we see thoughts in our minds and at some point, there’s a gap, maybe lightness, openness, or space. But there are still subliminal thoughts, in some sense, happening there, determining our experience. I realize I’m in a thought, and I’m watching it, and suddenly I realize you arise as a thought. In time this process might go as far as seeing that everything arises as a thought, even your external perceptions. That’s what I mean by creativity. What arises is absolutely brand new. It will happen only if there’s a freshness in the moment, if the mind is being touched by the now. But if it’s just putting two old things together, you don’t really get anything new, just a combination of the old. So for there to be insight, there has to be in-touchness with the beingness itself, with the energy that’s there in the moment. That combines the concepts in a fresh way. So you get a new insight that is not just a logical combination.

Creativity of Space

Our main interest here, however, is not in the golden merged state but in space and its connection to merging. The fact that, in some cases, the emptiness of space leads into a fulfilling golden fullness gives us a glimpse of the further uses of space, of the creative aspect of space. The golden fullness is not the only fruit of the creativity of space. We have discussed it briefly only as an example to illustrate the creative dimension of space. The creativity of space is boundless. In fact, the experience of space itself can develop and deepen into a higher form of space, a space that is neither empty nor full. It is a dimension of space where the physical boundaries of the body are not erased by emptiness, but experienced as space itself. In this case, space simultaneously holds two opposites: emptiness and fullness. It feels empty and light, but also feels full and has density. Space here is not an absence, but a presence. This is unfamiliar for the ordinary mind. However, this unfamiliarity is only a boundary that can be dissolved, or in this case itself seen as a space. This phenomenon is known in Buddhism and referred to as the unity of emptiness and form.

The Void, pg. 65

Creativity When You are in the World and Of It

Creativity is everything. Everything you see, whatever you think, wherever you go—there is creativity; something new is being created. There are three dimensions, three levels to the journey of this Work, and we can look at the question of creativity from these three levels. The first dimension is that you are in the world and are of it. In the second dimension, you are in the world but not of it. And in the third dimension you are part of the world but not of it. The first level—you are in the world and of it—is the conventional perspective. Most people experience themselves in the world and of it. How is creativity seen from this perspective? Creativity is seen as someone doing something new: whenever there is a creation, an idea, or production such as a painting, sculpture, design, poem, music, that hasn’t been done before. From this perspective, the more you are different from other people the more creative you are. Sometimes the weirder you are, the more creative. Many artists fall into this category. But often in art, creativity is nothing but the expression of the unconscious. Something is inside you that you’re not aware of, so you express it by a creative act. The creativity brings out the unconscious and expresses it through some artistic production. In that sense it is good, in that it allows your unconscious to come out and be seen and expressed.

Creativity When You are in the World but Not Of It

The second dimension has to do with being in the world but not of it. Creativity here means expressing the part of you that is not of the world. This means the part of you that is really you, that is not part of the conventional world of human conditioning—the expression of this is the process of creativity. If you are self-realized, you are in a constant process of creativity. The true self is always being lived out. You are being your true self and just living. And living yourself out is a creative act, it is creativity, because who you are is always new (always new, but not necessarily different). You might simply be sipping a cup of tea, but you are being creative, because it is like the first time you have done it, very new, fresh, very clean. So there is creativity in it. For instance, you make yourself an egg in the morning, and because you are what is really you, you are artistic and creative in the way you do it. You do it delicately, precisely, with great beauty. You are there, you’re aware, and everything is perceived in a very delicate way. Being yourself means being present. Creativity is the living out of your presence. The more you are yourself, the more you’re being naturally creative. Creativity then is the process of living, the process of understanding.

Creativity When You are Part of the World but Not In It

In the third dimension, when you are part of the world but not in it, creativity is all that you see, everything that you see. It is like a dream, in that when you dream, you are creating the dream. You are creating the whole world. Everything you see around you is in the process of creativity, is in the process of being, or coming into being: creation. That is actually the objective situation—everything that you see around you is being created every second. This world that you see—all these people, this house, the floor, the light, the plants—are not products of the past; they are being created right at this moment, constantly, always being generated. The world is not a product of the past, and you are not the product of your past. You think you are there because you were born and grew up. In a sense this is true; however, right at this moment where do you come from? You don’t come from your mother’s womb at this moment. So at this second where do you come from? To see the answer is to know and participate in what creativity is, what creation is. This is the greatest creativity, the greatest art.

Everything is Being Created Every Split-Second

This present arising is creativity, and in this sense, everything is creativity. The whole thing is a constant process of creation. Everything is being created every second, every split-second. You are being created; so is everything. We have been lulled into the conventional belief that we come from the past – from our father and mother, from childhood experiences, and from our history. Our mind uses this story so that we don’t look at the issue of our origin more directly. The mind is habituated to think that the past is where everything comes from. But that is illogical because the past actually doesn’t exist.

Only When We See this Dynamic Creativity Do We Understand Movement and Action and Change

This simple stillness full of graceful clarity, in its depth and silence, is gently and effortlessly manifesting everything in a process of effulgence and light. The enlightened view includes the process of manifestation, includes this constant effulgence that creates all the things in the world from the void, that materializes each thing from nothing. In that sense, reality is a wizard. Out of complete nothingness appears all that we perceive and experience. And it’s as simple and as easy as dreaming something. When you dream, you create a whole universe that feels like solid matter; people get hurt and various things happen, but it’s really not taking any effort. You are completely asleep, completely resting, and it is all happening. It is the same with Quintessence; it is completely still and silent, and at the same time it is unfolding everything with effortless ease and spontaneity. Recognizing the spontaneous happening of reality, we see the pulsing creativity that instantly manifests the entire world that we see from moment to moment. The world emerges, appears, disappears, emerges newly, appears, disappears—all instantly, all constantly. We can see this in our own experience. Our experience is always a creative emergence of various forms of feelings, thoughts, and sensations constantly changing. In the complete view, our experience, the outer world—everything, including our body—is constantly generated, created, and formed. Only when we see this dynamic creativity do we understand movement and action and change. Each form, including us, is created newly and differently each instant; these slight differences, when seen through the continuum of time, appear as movement—just as the still frames of a movie projected quickly, one after the other, give the sense of movement and change when actually it’s instant-to-instant creation.

Ontological Creativity

In the deeper stages of self-realization, and especially in the experience of primordial nondual presence, the flow of presence is completely coemergent with action. Action flows out completely inseparable from presence, for the body and mind are inseparable manifestations of presence. In some sense, there is no such thing on this dimension as action, for there is only the continuity of presence, as a discriminated and patterned flow. Some of these patterns we ordinarily call actions, some we call feelings, and some we call states, but they are all nothing but presence, the expression of the never-ending creativity of presence. In other words, action here is ontological creativity.

Reality is Always in Flux

It is understandable that you want to change. Change is natural. Change is the actual state of reality. Reality is always in flux, in constant change and transformation. Life is change, continual movement and transformation and renewal. When it is allowed to unfold, life is always fresh and new. Creativity is the movement of life. When you allow yourself to be, instead of trying to change, you become a creative person. Life is creativity, unfoldment, transformation, in ways you can’t even imagine yet. Wanting to change has nothing to do with change. Trying to change has nothing to do with the natural movement of change. The natural movement of change is an unfoldment. It’s not something you can direct.

Seeing How We Believe We are Choosing What Happens When, in Reality, We Are Not

If we think of the universe as God, we are thinking of it as not only consciousness but as some kind of pure intelligence. This means that its action is not mechanical and arbitrary, but completely spontaneous and free. The universe manifests at each moment completely spontaneously, and this spontaneous action is the action of intelligence, the action of creativity. So the best way for us to open ourselves to this realization is to go along with it. To become free, we have to learn to surrender, to go along with what happens. This is the most important methodological basis for our work: We stay with what is, and allow it to unfold. The only doing that is necessary is understanding our situation enough to see how we believe we are choosing what happens, when in reality, we are not.

Facets of Unity, pg. 122

The Innate Creativity in the Functioning of Brilliancy

The intelligence of Being does not function in a mechanical way like a computer does—by stringing together perceptions and memories. It is not like artificial intelligence, which is why artificial intelligence will never become real intelligence. There is an innate creativity in the functioning of Brilliancy. Intelligent inquiry possesses an organic, intuitive magic in how it arrives at insights. As a result, there is always a newness in the experience, and always an efficiency in our way of understanding. The inquiry embodies a lucidity, a fluidity, and a radiance that illuminate experience and make it possible for us to see more directly. Consciousness becomes so luminous that it cannot help but see more intrinsically, more to the core of the matter, always in a very smooth, easy, and lucid way, without effort or method. The more that Brilliancy is present, the more we see directly without having to travel the route of making a series of connections. We are able to bridge big gaps in our understanding of experience without having to go through exhaustive, methodical analysis and correlation. We can jump between places due to the intensity, the fluidity, and the smoothness that is going through our consciousness. It is as though the Brilliancy itself were flowing through our neocortex and leaping across our synapses. In addition, our consciousness is not only clear and transparent from the clarity of Essence, but a radiance from within illuminates and highlights the various associations and connections. Connections are more readily obvious because of the intense light shining through them.

Brilliancy, pg. 70

We Come Close to Understanding the Indefinable Truth of True Nature when We Understand that it is Self-Creative

But the fourth turning of the wheel reveals more about the creative dynamism of true nature. We see that it is not as if there is a true nature, one of whose properties is creative dynamism. We come close to understanding the indefinable truth of true nature when we understand that it is self-creative. So, for example, when essential strength arises, essential strength is creating itself. Something else is not creating it. It is not as if there is a Godhead someplace that is creating essential strength in the moment. Rather, the quality is self-creating. It does not have a source outside of itself. There is no true nature separate from essential strength that is creating this quality. Essential strength is true nature creating itself as essential strength. This goes for all spiritual manifestations. When pure awareness arises as the luminosity that makes up everything, true nature is creating itself as that. It is not as if true nature is over here and is creating pure awareness over there. Pure awareness is self-creating; pure awareness is true nature creating itself as pure awareness.

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