Being Divinity Itself
As you see through your identity with your body more and more, you become the light itself. You recognize, “I am this light.” And that’s the first stage of being a transcendent witness. Although you are aware of your body, you recognize that you are the light, and not the body. I’ll tell you about my own experience with this, with a few lines from my journal:
“Evening, on a walk. Being the divine light, I experience myself as a very light awareness, but as a witness. I am actually not identified with the body. I am aware of the body walking. Being the divine light is really a transcendence of everything.”
So in this experience I am this light, I know I am the light, and I can see my body walking. It’s as if someone’s hovering up above the body and seeing it. But actually I wasn’t hovering; it’s more that somehow I was everywhere, and I was seeing the body walking along the road. And that’s the beginning of being the light, being the divine love.
Recognizing that You are Divine Love and light
The next step is to recognize that you are this divine love and light, and that it pervades everything. And that includes the body, so the divine love contains the body, it holds it. It’s like the body sits in this light that I am, and that is different from the earlier experience where the light seemed to be inside the body; now the body is in the light. And then you recognize that this light or divine love that you are, which includes your body, is just part of the divine love that is the nature of everything. Everything is divine love, and you are part of it. This means you are part of God, a cell in a cosmic body. This is a nondual experience, but not one that’s emphasized by many of the nondual teachings. It is useful for living a personal life from a nondual perspective, however.
Being Divinity Itself
After that comes the experience of being divinity itself. It is the awareness that I am this love, this consciousness, this presence, and I am everything, not just a part of everything. At this point there is complete identity with the wholeness and oneness of everything. Certainly not with the body—the body is just one of the things that constitute me, and I am far more than that. I am everybody and everything; I am the walls and the doors, the mountains, the skies, and the stars. I am also the very nature of all these things—that’s how I am them. I know myself as the true nature of everything.
Being Enveloped in Divine Darkness
While it is true that our experience is such that we feel we know less and less as we are enveloped in the divine darkness, we are actually becoming increasingly intimate with the divine light, the absolute transcendent truth. We perceive and discriminate less, but this decrease of discrimination is not an increasing ignorance. It is the increase of a different kind of knowledge, a knowledge that is in its nature beyond discrimination, beyond the recognition of qualities and attributes.
The Inner Journey Home, pg. 256
Divine Light is Dark and Pre-Color
Clearly, the nature of this process and its accompanying experience can lead us to the conclusion that the absolutely transcendent truth is unknowable. When absolute transcendence is taken to mean true nature totally apart from any manifest form, this is true. However, we see this as one possible understanding of this process. While it is true that our experience is such that we feel we know less and less as we are enveloped in the divine darkness, we are actually becoming increasingly intimate with the divine light, the absolute transcendent truth. We perceive and discriminate less, but this decrease of discrimination is not an increasing ignorance. It is the increase of a different kind of knowledge, a knowledge that is in its nature beyond discrimination, beyond the recognition of qualities and attributes. It is the simplicity of the source, which is so single that its knowing is an unknowing. As we become more enveloped in the divine darkness we are actually enveloped in divine light, for the divine light is dark. It is black light, the source of all light, not colorless but pre-color. We might think that clear light is the ultimate light, as is asserted by some Buddhist schools. However, clarity is an attribute, albeit a fundamental one. It is the absence of color, but not the ontological antecedent of color. Black light is the luminous divine darkness, the source of all light, and the origin of awareness.
The Inner Journey Home, pg. 255
Recognizing that Everything is that Light and Love
Now, when we recognize that the body is a body of light, that isn’t necessarily the same thing as what people sometimes mean when they refer to “a body of light.” People can use that term to describe the sense of there being a body of light inside the physical body. That is a specific development of the soul, which does happen, but it’s a more limited experience where you’re still subject to the duality between the physical and the divine. So the first level of experiencing the light is with you experiencing light, but the real experience is when you know that you are the light, you are the love. However, the fullest experience is to recognize that everything is that light and love, not just the individual you.
Soul Becoming an Offspring of Divine Light
When her rigid structures are made transparent through the unfolding of her process, the soul feels this as an increase in consciousness and presence. At a heightened level of intensity this presence reveals itself as luminous light that now overflows her personal boundaries; the overflow that melts these boundaries is actually the overflow of divine love and grace. Thus it reveals itself as the boundless ocean of Being and love, consciousness and light, the substance and true nature of everything. She experiences herself as a form held by this loving light, inseparable from it. She is an offspring of the divine light, one of its loving and exquisite manifestations. But her light can grow so intense that even her sense of being a form of light becomes outshone, and she recognizes herself as the light itself, in its boundlessness and infinity. She is then the true nature of everything; she is the ground. More exactly, she is everything, as one divine being, where substance and form are wedded into an inseparable Reality. She is ultimately true nature itself, in its divine boundlessness and omnipresent grace. All things are equal, equalized by the unity of appearance.
The Inner Journey Home, pg. 276
Things Like Divine Light, Angels or Love are Just as Conceptual as a Rug or a Tree
So today we learned something about knowing. What we call our knowledge is nothing but a recognition based on concepts taken from the past. It is labeling things. I mean not just rugs, but things like divine light, angels, love. All these things are concepts too. They are just as conceptual as a rug or a tree. They’re not more spiritual. They are the same thing, ultimately. They are created by your mind in the sense that they are concepts too. We’re not saying concepts are bad, we’re simply saying they are concepts. We have to see what the knowledge of the mind is, what true perception is. One of the most powerful ways of waking up is to see that what we think we know, we do not really know. To acknowledge our profound ignorance, our deep, fundamental, unchangeable ignorance. And that ignorance really, that profound ignorance, is ultimately our salvation rather than our deficiency. That ignorance is the entry, the door to the wonder, and the mystery.