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Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Falsehood?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Falsehood

A Different Perspective on the Ego

The perspective of most spiritual teachings is that ego is a falsehood, and hence it must die for there to be truth. We will show that this is true, but that it is not the whole truth. We will show that the ego, with its sense of self and personality, has a truth hidden within its nature, a truth that is not necessarily visible from the transcendent and impersonal state. We will show that ego is a reflection of a truth, an attempt to imitate an absolute and eternal reality. In fact, we will explore how ego is nothing but a failed or aborted attempt at a real development. We will show that ego is a reflection, an imperfect one indeed, but still a reflection of true reality, the reality of the true human being. We will see that by understanding ego, rather than transcending it, we can understand and actualize the reality of what it is to be a human being. Only through this understanding and realization can we see what human life is. We will see that this truth that ego tries to emulate is what most people are seeking in their personal life, and that realizing this truth of what it is to be a human being is the aim of humanity.


Annihilation of Falsehood

Our work on the inner path reveals the fundamental beliefs and assumptions of the mind. Our work is a matter of increasing annihilation of what is not true. If we are really honest with ourselves, if we let ourselves live in our aloneness, away from the influences of all that we’ve learned and been told, all the beliefs about the good and the bad, if we really delve into the matter, we see that the world is not what we think and that we are not what we think. For sure, your mother was wrong about who you are and never really saw you. How could she see you? She couldn’t go into the night; she barely lived in the day. What your mother didn’t see is your true nature, the unmanifest ground from which you and the world emerge. Whoever goes into the night will be eaten up, consumed in an instant, incinerated in a second. The night does not love you, does not do good things for you, does not have mercy on you, and does not make your life easy. The only thing the night can do is incinerate you. This is its only effect: absolute annihilation. This sounds scary, but when you see the falsehood of your entityhood and recognize the pure consciousness, you will be consumed with the passion to annihilate what is false. The longing for cessation is the ultimate desire that we have. It is the ultimate death wish, not the usual physical death wish. To die in total and complete annihilation means not knowing that you ever were or that you ever will be. It is absolute darkness, absolute peace. The Sufis refer to this as fana fi al-dhat, the death into the Divine Essence. Christian mystics refer to it as disappearing into the divine darkness. The Buddhists refer to it as the cessation leading to nirvana, or the dharmakaya of the bardo. All genuine inner teachings speak of this death and consider it the most definitive experience on the path.

Being Will Absorb Only that Which is Absolutely Empty of Falsehood

Any falsehood, that is, anything which is not the objective truth of what actually happened in past interactions which produced a particular object relation, is felt in comparison to Being to be dull, gross and distasteful. When one is in contact with Being, these falsehoods are felt to be lifeless, thick and heavy veils in comparison to the luminosity of Being. In order to discover why Being will not absorb certain materials, we must ask, what is it that Being actually absorbs? We have stated that it absorbs identifications which are devoid of resistance; but these are merely memories of experiences, and elaborations of such memories. What is it in these memories that Being will absorb? Being is like an individual who is aware, intelligent, discriminating, truth-loving and undeceivable. If you present a story to this individual, what will he take within himself, and what will he leave untouched? He will take in the truth and leave the false without touching it. So identifications will not be absorbed into Being unless they are absolutely empty of falsehood. Only when an identification contains exactly what objectively occurred in the original interaction will it be readily absorbed. Identifications that are pure fabrications will not be absorbed at all; and identifications which contained an original truth of experience will be absorbed only when they are completely purged of falsehood. Being does not, of course, reject or judge the falsehood; it simply takes into itself what is of its own nature, that is truth and reality, and leaves the false alone.

Dissolving of False Impressions

In general, the process of eliminating falsehood is spontaneous; the mind generally lets go of an impression when it recognizes it to be false. Since it can no longer be used for purposes of identification, and cannot be absorbed, the false impression simply dissolves. An exception to this pattern is when a clearly false belief is part of a larger system, most likely unconscious, which the mind still takes to be true; then the mind will hold on to the falsehood until the larger belief system is revealed.

Essence Makes Transparent the Falsehood of the Personality

This is because the environment is ruled by the personality, normal and pathological. All institutions of society, except for isolated instances, are formed, run, and populated by the personality, the usurper of the place of essence. And the personality by its very nature, by its existence, is contrary to the essence and lacks the understanding of its nature. Not only that, its very life is threatened by essence. For essence exposes its emptiness, bares its hurts, and makes transparent its falsehood. We saw in the previous chapter that the personality develops in the process of the loss of essence to fill the resulting void and to hide the painful deficiencies. It takes the place of essence. Its very basis is the absence of essence. Hence, these bases of its existence will be threatened by the emergence of essence. The personality cannot understand essence. It is in no position to sympathize with it and in most cases is in outright opposition to it.

Essential Truth is Not Corrupted by Lies and Falsehood but Exposes Them

Truth is one of the aspects of Essence, which expresses its property of essential Truth as the very existence of Truth, rather than as truth related to some object or idea. This aspect reveals that Truth is ultimately a presence, a self-existing quality of Being, and not only a quality which qualifies something else. Truth is then experienced as a dense and substantial presence, solid and real. It is a presence that has luster, warmth, intimacy, and realness. It is a solidity that is not corrupted by lies and falsehood, but can expose all lies and falsehood. Although it is dense and solid like gold, Truth possesses heart qualities like warmth and intimacy. There is a sense of purity to it, a sense of incorruptability, a sense of being the real thing. It functions, in part, to give the self the capacity to discern truth and separate it from falsehood, a capacity needed not only for spiritual development but for survival. The way it provides the self with this capacity is the way pure solid gold provides the jeweler with a way of discriminating it from its imitations and alloys. This capacity is needed because lies and falsehood usually function to take the place of truth, presenting themselves as truth.

Freedom From Conceptual Perspectives

To be established in the nonconceptual is to attain an inconceivable freedom. The soul realizes her nature in such a way that she does not need to know what it is. She does not need to know she is enlightened. She is beyond the concept of enlightenment and liberation. She is innocent, not knowing she is enlightened, and not caring to know. She has attained liberated indifference, for the fullness of realization takes her to such completion that there is no distinction between falsehood and truth, soul and essence, enlightenment or delusion. There is no reflection on one’s realization, no excitement about it, no narcissistic congratulations, and no need to talk about it. One is, Reality is thus, and one goes about one’s business. The aspirant’s mind is open and free, totally unencumbered by any position, philosophy, or system. He has no perspective that he takes to be ultimate and final. Yet, he is free to use any system. Since he is established in the nonconceptual he sees all perspectives for what they are, conceptual perspectives, and hence not ultimate truth. But because he can use his discriminating mind, he can see when a given perspective is useful or necessary for some functioning or teaching, and is free to use it. Nevertheless, he uses it without having to believe it is ultimate and can drop it whenever it becomes unnecessary. He needs no perspective for his own experience, for he lives where no perspective can enter. Although he understands the need for the correct perspective for those who have not attained the nonconceptual, he recognizes that what is necessary for the soul’s freedom is not a particular perspective, but liberation from all conceptual limitations.

The Soul is, in a Word, Ignorant

Truth is the fundamental ground of our soul, so the soul is fundamentally faithful to the truth. She always lives and acts out what she believes to be true. Yes, we frequently act out of lies and falsehoods, but this is because the soul believes that they are true. When we act out being a little deficient kid, for instance, it is because the soul believes that she is a little deficient kid. When we act from anger, we really believe that the truth is that we should act out the anger. The difficulty is not that the soul loves or likes falsehood, but that she takes a falsehood as truth and lives it out faithfully. For example, the soul will not let go of identification with the ego because the soul is totally convinced that this is who she is. The soul is convinced that she is the body, that she is this person, and so this is what she is going to live, act out, and defend until death. The soul is, in a word, ignorant.

Brilliancy, pg. 63

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