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Dynamic Presence

Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Dynamic Presence?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Dynamic Presence

A Dynamic Presence that is Continuously Changing and Transforming as a Unified Field

The perspective of Holy Law, then, illuminates the fact that the unity of Being is not a static existence, but rather, a dynamic presence that is continuously changing and transforming as a unified field. Here, we see the aliveness of Being and the universe, its energy and flow and vigorous transformation. This Holy Idea confronts some of our very basic convictions about reality, but if we don’t understand it, we cannot really understand what unfoldment means. This is because the unfoldment of the soul is Holy Law operating in one location, so when we perceive it, we are seeing in microcosm what is happening everywhere all the time. Holy Law is not an easy thing to swallow, since in the process of perceiving it, you—as you have known yourself—get swallowed up.

Facets of Unity, pg. 260

Change is Never Local or Individual: it is Always Universal

The dimension of dynamic presence reveals that Being is not only the ground and ultimate constituent nature of everything, but that it is the only thing that changes. In other words, change is never local or individual; it is always universal. The totality of the universe, in all of its dimensions, changes as one indivisible Reality; the perception of these changes, when combined with ignorance of its true nature, gives us the impression that there exist objects that move and change. Since each point of the field of presence perpetually changes, giving the appearance of movement, development, transformation, and so on, we can say that no man has ever walked on the face of the earth. In fact, no human being has ever taken one step. No being, human or animal, has ever moved a limb. No being has ever changed, grown, matured, developed, evolved, declined, or decayed. No one has ever been born, lived, or died. It is only the appearance of true nature that changes. We call the changes of some locations of this appearance movement, of other locations transformation, and of yet others development or evolution. Depending on the characteristics of the changes of a particular location of appearance, in its relation to its neighboring locations, we may term the change transformation, development, evolution, decay, decline, and so on.

Dynamic Presence Experienced in a Limited and Individual Way

In other words, when we experience our soul as a living dynamic presence we are actually experiencing the dimension of dynamic presence but in a limited and individual way, as related to our particular physical body. Dynamic presence does not dismember itself into individual and separate souls, but simply appears so due to our limited understanding of our true nature. Because of this, the realization of the dimension of dynamic presence challenges our conviction that our souls have to be separate within the individual, and brings about a precise understanding of the relation of the individual soul to universal soul, or dynamic presence, this way liberating us from deep and constricting convictions.

Dynamic Transformation of the Appearance of Oneness

In other words, we experience the oneness of Being similarly to the dimensions of divine love, pure presence, and nonconceptual awareness, but with the highlighted property of dynamic transformation of the appearance of this oneness. The changes in this fabric completely account for all the changes we ordinarily perceive as movement, transformation, and so on. However, in egoic experience we do not perceive the oneness of all phenomena, because we are not aware of the ground of presence that underlies and constitutes all their forms. Therefore, we perceive the changing forms without perceiving their underlying ground. The result is that we perceive separate and independent forms that move or change. We see a man walking in the street rather than perceiving a dynamic field that takes the form of a street with a man walking in it. We end up taking the view that there is such a thing as a man, and hence all kinds of discrete objects, and separate phenomena and processes. We miss not only the sense of oneness and unity of existence, but also the throbbing and vital dynamism.

Experiencing Ourselves, not as a Limited Soul but as a Boundless Presence that is Dynamic and Vital

When we experience the process of universal transformation as a flowing and unfolding presence, we begin to recognize the dimension of dynamic presence itself. The various ways of experiencing universal transformation in the above discussion reflect how we experience the coemergence of dynamic presence with the other boundless dimensions, and the degrees of subtlety of experiencing these dimensions. But when we experience it specifically as the flowing and unfoldment of presence we come upon the particular dimension of dynamic presence, at least in the logos of the Diamond Approach. Our experience focuses here on the dimension of true nature responsible for change and movement, which provides us with a more complete and detailed understanding of the changeability of existence. We experience ourselves here similarly to the soul, as a flowing and dynamic presence, teeming with energy and pulsing with power. Yet, we are not a limited soul, but a boundless presence that is dynamic and vital, full of life and creative power. We may actually recognize here that the qualities that our soul possesses, those of flow, unfoldment, dynamism, potentiality, creativity, and morphogenic transformation come to it from this boundless dimension of dynamic being. In other words, when we experience our soul as a living dynamic presence we are actually experiencing the dimension of dynamic presence but in a limited and individual way, as related to our particular physical body.

Experiencing True Nature on the Dimension of Dynamic Presence

Such understanding can be the entry point to the dimension of dynamic presence. Here we experience ourselves as boundless and infinite, pulsing and throbbing with energy and vigor. We experience true nature on this dimension as presence that is energetic, active, and dynamic. It is pulsing and throbbing, full of force and power. The sense of dynamism is strong. We experience it in various ways, but mostly as a presence that is not static at all, but vigorous and alive. The vigor is exhilarating and energizing, giving a sense of power and creativity. We feel it as presence, as the immediate sense of substantial being, but this presence has an excitatory quality that brings a tremendous dynamism to our experience. We sense the immense underlying dynamism of the universe, as the force, will, and energy of Being responsible for all manifestation, change, and transformation.

Getting Accustomed to a Particular Way that Being Manifests Itself

We can think of reality as a living, dynamic beingness that has infinite possibilities of revealing itself, of revealing its nature and its manifestations. And it reveals those manifestations in time and space. Time and space is the projection screen that reality uses to reveal all the possibilities of experience. We ordinarily consider our experience of time and space to be normal life. However, in our ordinary experience, and in the history of the species, we have gotten accustomed to a particular way that reality manifests itself, a particular mode in which Being can present its possibilities. And that is the mode of an individual self—a self that is in the world and perceives other things. This is called the dual perspective, the dualistic view. Instead of a dynamic living reality that plays with time and space in a fluid open-ended manner, time and space are frozen in segments and partitions, constituting selves and objects, experiences and events. That is the reality to which humanity has gotten accustomed. There is a self, a human being among others, and there is the world of many things—life becomes a matter of perceiving objects and having experiences.

Reality is Moving and Changing All the Time

The third characteristic is that true nature is dynamic. Reality is moving and changing all the time. This is obvious when you notice that your perception of your inner experience—or of the whole world—is not a snapshot; it is a movie. It is inherently in a constant state of change and transformation. It is not a static presence. This is related to the Buddhist notion of the “all accomplishing wisdom.” Reality is a dynamic presence that is always changing through shifts in the manifest patterns. In fact, the presence of change is implicit in the fact of awareness; without it, there is no awareness. If there is only a snapshot and the observer is part of the snapshot, the observer will have no awareness of anything. Change is necessary for awareness. If you are aware of the Absolute, only the Absolute, and nothing but the Absolute, then you have no awareness of anything. That is why this experience of the Absolute is called cessation. But usually when you are aware of the Absolute, you are also aware of the manifestation, the dynamism, or the flow that is obvious in your own experience.

The Dimension of Dynamic Presence Reveals How All Change and Movement Occur

In the same act true nature generates forms and perceives them. It is the creator, the created, and the process of creation. Creation is simply generation, a continuous unfolding of forms and experiences. One way this appears to us in the inner journey is the recognition that there is no such thing as individual action. When we realize that there is ultimately no separate and autonomous soul we see that there is no such thing as independent action, personal choice, or volition. We began to understand this in working with the previously discussed boundless dimensions, in the form of questions about action and functioning. In fact, one of the primary difficulties in integrating these boundless dimensions of Being is the question of functioning, of how expression, action, and behavior happen. We understand functioning completely when we realize the dimension of dynamic presence, for we see how all change and movement occur. Since change and movement are limited ways of perceiving universal transformation, we see that individual action is a way of viewing a particular transformation of a certain region in the field of presence. Since an individual is only a form taken by a particular region of the field, one’s action is actually the action of the field. One’s behavior is nothing but the manifestation of the dynamism of Being, just as one’s choices are made by the same dynamic presence. Volition becomes a concept that we cannot apply in this experience, for there are no autonomous entities that can have volition. All is done by the dynamism of Being, all chosen by the dynamic presence, and there is only one will, the dynamic will of true nature.

Witnessing the Dimension of Dynamic Presence Manifesting Within the Vast Mystery of the Absolute

We can also experience universal transformation as a process of manifestation. In this perception we are aware of the purity of true nature, a homogeneous unity beyond any form or color. We perceive the forms of the universe manifesting out of this timeless ground, as if they are first hidden and unmanifest but then come out into manifestation. We then view the appearance of Being as the manifest reality, with the pure ground of Being as the unmanifest. This perception is clearest when we perceive the transformation process from the perspective of the absolute dimension, the subject of the next chapter. There are many grades of subtlety to this perception, which we will discuss in the next chapter. We experience the absolute as the unmanifest, the source of all manifestation, and perceive everything manifesting out of it. In fact, we witness the whole dimension of dynamic presence as manifesting within the vast mystery of the absolute, which is concomitant to the continual manifesting of the totality of the universe. More accurately, we experience the dimension of dynamic presence as the manifesting manifestation. Its emergence is the emergence of all creation, with all of its dimensions and forms.

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