Main Pages

By Region



Diamond Will

Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Diamond Will?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Diamond Will

A Perfection of Being that is the Support for the Essential Identity

Although the Diamond Will is a pure aspect of Essence (that has no equivalent in the conventional dimension of experience), we associate it with what is commonly called support. This aspect seems to be the prototype for the ordinary concept of support. This notion seems confirmed by the observation that we experience the need for support when the idealizing transference is disrupted, and working through the issues leads to the experience of support on the level of Being. While we recognize it as the true support, we see also that it is actually much more than support; it is a perfection of Being that remains mysterious regardless of how clearly and completely we know it. It is in this sense that the Diamond Will is the support for the Essential Identity. The Essential Identity cannot stand on its own because it is only one of the perfections of Being. For it to stand on its own would mean that it can be isolated from the unity of Being. The Essential Identity is the perfection that represents the total identity of the self with this unity.

Blocking the Experience of Being

Being is a unity, implicitly complete and perfect. When we engage in inner ego activity to sustain and protect our sense of identity, this activity blocks the experience of Being. It specifically blocks the Diamond Will. Blocking any quality of Being constitutes a barrier to full realization, because Being is a unity and does not exist in isolated parts. When this particular barrier is removed, we first experience Being in the aspect of the implicit perfection that had been blocked. In its innate intelligence, Being manifests itself in the quality specifically needed for it, Being, to reveal itself as the fundamental reality of the self. This manifestation makes explicit in experience the implicit perfection that was blocked.

Clarifying Major Issues Around Support

Experiencing Diamond Will elicits and clarifies all the major issues about support, particularly those of the idealizing transference. Other issues related to this dimension also arise, giving the student the opportunity to explore them. A new phase of integration commences when specific essential aspects emerge singly or in combinations, experienced as aspects of support. In other words, Love, or Peace, or Kindness, or Intelligence, and so on, may arise as support. Each of these manifestations may bring up a specific issue about support. For instance, the idealizing transference might be disrupted by what the student feels is an unempathic response from the teacher. If he takes this event to indicate the imperfection of the teacher’s sensitivity and compassion, this means that he experiences the teacher as lacking the quality of compassion on the dimension of the Diamond Will, that is, as support. This typically will bring to consciousness the childhood situation in which the student felt that one of his parents did not compassionately relate to who he was. Issues arise about the need for the parent’s compassionate support, with the associated object relations, emotional hurt, and other feelings. This exploration will lead to the deficient emptiness of support, which can then usher the student into the experience of true support.

Diamond Will and Support

The support that emerges when we go through the narcissistic helplessness is a manifestation of Being which is this whole dimension of Will. We refer to this as Diamond Will for reasons we will discuss shortly. Understanding this quality will clarify many issues regarding idealization and its transferences.

Different Levels of Diamond Will

The different levels of Diamond Will correspond to different levels of essential identity. The first level corresponds to the Essential Identity, which is the identity for differentiated self. For most children, the idealized selfobject is the father, as we saw in most of the cases above. The next level of identity is related to experiencing ourselves as Being that is boundless and infinite. It is the self-realization of Being, on the cosmic level, where one recognizes Being, and hence, one’s true identity, to be the undifferentiated unity of all existence. For most students, the childhood idealized selfobject relating to this realization is the mother of symbiosis, or more accurately, the mother of Mahler’s dual unity. The next level of support, the Nonconceptual Diamond Will, relates to the identity with Being as a nonconceptual truth, and so on. This ultimately leads to the Nondual Diamond Will, which relates to the nondual presence as our identity, and this is the true self that transforms what we have called oral narcissism.

Essential Support for Nonaction

Our perspective on will differs significantly from the conventional view. Will is usually associated with action, but we are seeing that in the context of spiritual work it implies the opposite: nonaction. Essential will is associated with action only in the sense that it provides the self with the confidence that allows it to persevere and to be patient. This insight becomes clearer as one experiences the various dimensions of will that manifest in the deeper stages of spiritual transformation. The Diamond Will clarifies this understanding in very specific details, in the utmost subtlety of inner actions. It is because of this precision, clarity, and subtlety, that we refer to the essential support as “Diamond” Will. This dimension of Essence supports the soul’s identity with Being, not only by its presence, but also, very significantly, because its presence exposes the futility of engaging in activity to support one’s sense of self. The “diamond” quality refers to the fact that this quality of presence is of a particular precise knowledge, a whole dimension of spiritual understanding. The presence of this quality teaches us that we do not need inner ego activity to support our true identity; in fact, the moment we reengage this habitual activity, we lose contact with the presence of the Diamond Will.

Having Your Own Support

It’s a dimension of Essence called the diamond will. It’s a deeper thing that has to do with the Hara and the lower belly more than anything else. The Hara is the support and at some point a certain realization, a certain aspect develops there. You feel a sense of solidity, sense of immensity, a sense of power and firmness that somehow supports you, supports your sense of self. Usually lack of support is experienced in the belly and the lower extremities. Some people feel that they don’t have legs or that their legs are weak or wobbly. Or the belly feels like jello.

Idealized Object as Support

Our exploration reveals, then, that the idealized object functions as a support for the familiar, but inherently weak, identity, and also as a defense against acknowledging the absence of true inner support, which we call the Diamond Will. The relationship with the idealized object supports the familiar identity, and thus masks narcissistic helplessness. Since this helplessness is an expression of the deficient emptiness—which signifies the absence of inner support, the idealized transference is specifically a defense against acknowledging this absence and the painful emotional states connected with it.

Narcissistic Identity and Diamond Will

Having explored idealizing transference and the dimension of Diamond Will, we can see more clearly the connection between the idealized object that is needed to support one’s narcissistic identity, and the essential quality that is the support for the true identity. The idealized object is usually seen as big, strong, powerful, perfect, intelligent, and loving. These characteristics are like the experience of the Diamond Will: immense, powerful, loving, spacious, and solid. We saw in Chapter 20 that the grandiose self is a distorted image of the Essential Identity. In relation to the Diamond Will, which is the true support for the Essential Identity, the image is not only distorted, but projected on an external object, usually a parent or teacher. This is the source of idealization: The perfect qualities of the idealized self-object are not merely created from the needs of the child, but reflect the qualities of something real. These qualities, which are considered by depth psychologists to be delusional idealizations, are the real characteristics of the only thing that can support the child’s real identity: the Diamond Will of Essence. The child needs the idealization, which is simply the projection of the Diamond Will on the parent, because he knows—albeit unconsciously and indirectly—what he needs to sustain his sense of true identity.

Psychological Activity is the Barrier to Simply Being

From this perspective, we come to understand that we may support ourselves to simply be not by doing anything, but by letting go of all inner activities towards that aim. The dimension of the Diamond Will provides guidance about the various barriers to this wisdom. It reveals, by its mere presence, how inner psychological activity is the primary barrier to simply being. It challenges all the false supports, all the activities and mechanisms that the self utilizes to gain support. The understanding that arises as we integrate this dimension of experience attains great subtlety and profundity. It includes the understanding of mental functioning and no-mind, timelessness, surrender and nondoing, and the ending of the search.

The Cathedral

“The cathedral” is one of the names for the Diamond Will because it frequently appears in consciousness as an inner form resembling a cathedral. We may call this a psychic structure, but not in the usual meaning of the term. It is not an organization of remembered impressions. In this experience, the consciousness is actually structured by the spontaneous arising of an essential form, a beautiful and magnificent form of presence. This presence actually exposes the usual psychic structures, especially composing the structure of self-identity and its supports. It exposes the self-identification as a fake structure with fake supports

The Delineated Form of the Diamond Will

The fact that the Diamond Will is a dimension of Essence means that integrating it is a much larger and more involved process than that of integrating a single essential aspect. As with other dimensions, the process of integration goes through two phases. The first phase is a matter of experiencing this whole dimension as a unit, as one manifestation. We experience it as a delineated form or structure of presence, very intricate and rich with detail. It is basically the manifestation of all essential aspects together, forming one structure. Since each aspect has a unique color and affect, the structure appears to be composed of colored lights, dancing with blissful feelings. It is a self-luminous, latticed, crystalline structure, with brilliant, dancing colors inseparable from the blissful qualities, all held within a sense of power and solidity of presence. The sense of immensity and majesty is breathtaking, reminding us of the mother spaceship in the movie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Given that this breathtaking structure is the prototype, it is no wonder that in our transferences the idealized object is imbued with such perfection of power and beauty.

Subscribe to the Diamond Approach