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Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Humanness?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Humanness

A Source of Love, Gentleness and Humanness

Oneness is not concerned about individuals, about the separateness. It does not say, “Oh, this person is suffering, that person is having a good time, let me do something about this.” Oneness doesn’t do anything. It is not of its nature to be concerned, yet it is also the source of all love and all goodness. But the love and goodness of oneness are a natural arising, just like the sun has light. It is not that the sun is concerned about us and says, “Well, the human race needs a little more heat, so let me pump a little more heat.” The nature of the oneness is that it is a source of love, gentleness and humanness, and all of that. It doesn’t have to be concerned. It is bigger than being concerned. In fact, the whole universe is the expression of the love of that oneness. The world that you see is like the robe that this oneness is wearing. And this robe is beauty and grace, made out of love and Essence, but it is also part of the oneness. Oneness as a concept is very difficult to think about, because to do that, you need to contrast it with other things. The oneness means there is nothing else to contrast it with. It does not exclude anything. The moment it excludes something, it is not oneness. There are two things then. 

Deepening Respect for People and an Appreciation of Humanness

The moment we recognize the living soul it becomes possible for us to see others as souls, and not just bodies. We may begin to see and appreciate the energy, the vitality, the color, the glow, and the intelligence of life in everyone. We can come to appreciate these qualities as manifestations of the presence of the soul, rather than viewing them as properties of the body. Recognizing in this way what a human being is naturally brings us to a deeper respect for people, and an appreciation of humanness. 

In Our Full Humanness We are the Vehicle Through which the Vastness Functions in Time and Space

When we know freedom, we are able to be completely human, embracing our divine, physical, feeling, and thinking natures—all of who we are. Our nature is one undivided unity. Everything is that One. As true human beings, we are awake to the One that is all and everything, and simultaneously awake to the preciousness of our uniqueness inseparable from the oneness. No segmentation, no divisions, within or without. The heart, mind, and body appear as a unified whole that is functioning harmoniously as one unit inseparable from its deepest nature. As the unbounded vastness, we are the oneness coalescing in a particular place, within the world of time and space. We are located, but that location does not define us nor does it separate us from one another or from the unity. We are individuated, differentiated forms of the unity . . . the wave of the ocean has matured to recognize its own unique expression of the oneness that it is. In our full humanness, we are the vehicle through which the vastness functions in time and space—seeing through our eyes, thinking through our mind, smelling through our nose, tasting through our mouth, feeling through our heart, and moving through our body. As our heart matures into greater refinement, we become able to communicate with greater empathic skill, our body can become sensitive far beyond the physical level, and the mind becomes more open and bright, all of which enables us to live a mature life. We are increasingly more present and skilled in how we live our lives, how we deal with our relationships, how we do our work, how we spend our time. We become wise in our worldly actions and interactions. Wisdom is the great gift of embodied freedom.

Our Humanness Has a Sensitivity to It Beyond the Nervous System

How often have you walked into a room and immediately said to yourself, “Hmm, it feels tense in here”? Then you find out that somebody there is going through a hard time and you’re picking up on it. Or you feel uplifted the minute you walk in—“Oh, it feels really nice in here”—and you find out that something joyful has been going on in the house. We don’t have to actually see somebody and get physical cues to feel what is happening. Our consciousness is sensitive. Our humanness has a sensitivity to it beyond the nervous system. It is more of a gut feeling at first, but it can manifest as an actual set of sensations corresponding to specific emotions and spiritual states of consciousness.  

Riches of Being - Seen as the Natural Maturation of Our Humanness

Nondual absolute presence can become the constant condition of the self, but this cannot be arrived at by pushing the self towards it as if it is an aim or achievement. We stand in our own way when we judge and reject our present experience and try to manipulate ourselves into posited heights of realization. Such attitudes and efforts will only disconnect us from ourselves, and as we have seen, this disconnection is the hallmark of narcissistic alienation. We need from the beginning to respect our humanness, to appreciate our immediate experience, and to learn to simply be where we are. It is in the gentleness and acceptance of relaxing where we experientially find ourselves, and the openness to the present manifestation of our Being, that makes it possible for us to sink deeper into our nature. This open acceptance can express itself in a lighthearted curiosity about ourselves and our experience in the world, inviting the depths of our Being to reveal themselves naturally and spontaneously. When this becomes our way of life, the various human situations we find ourselves in will become the context for our unfoldment, revealing the riches of Being as the natural maturation of our humanness. 

The Optimizing Force is Always Working Because It is Inherent to Our Humanness

One way to conceive of the dynamism of Being is that it’s totally free and unprejudiced, and open to all possibilities. It can manifest itself in a positive or a negative way, in evolutionary or devolutionary directions. This means that the optimizing force can appear in its primordial state—that is, free and unhampered—or as distorted and constrained. Either way, the optimizing force is always working, because it is inherent to our humanness. We sometimes just don’t see it as optimizing because it is filtered through barriers that distort it. All of our experiences, all of our perceptions, are basically due to the dynamism of our Being. And all of them reflect the optimizing force functioning in either a straightforward manner or a distorted manner. There are, in other words, no accidental experiences, no chance inner states. Whatever arises is in us, whatever we experience in the world is a response, or manifestation, of our Being. And our Being is functioning as optimally as it can, given the presence or absence and the quality of our filters.

The Possibility to Mature in Everyday Life and Fulfill Our Humanness

The process of spiritual development, which is the maturation of the human being, can be divided into two complementary facets. One is the self-realization of Being in its various aspects and manifestations, and the other is the integration of this self-realization in the everyday life of a human person. The latter is a progressive process of maturation of the self, in which the unfoldment of Being expresses itself in an individuated personal life with other human beings in a real world. Self-realization connects the person to his true identity, which is his Being, and this makes it possible for him to mature in everyday life and to fulfill his humanness. Human life becomes then the personal expression of one’s realization in the context of normal life situations. So we can say that the process of individuation makes it possible for us to be in the world, while that of self-realization connects us with the transcendental source of our Being, which is beyond the world of appearance.

The Presence of the Water Aspect is the Presence of the Quality of Humanness

These essential qualities can be experienced directly, or through their effect on the soul. In other words, some of the descriptive terms refer to qualities of presence and others to the impact on the soul of this presence. The effect in the soul can be in her inner experience, her attitudes, or her actions and expressions. For example, the presence of the emerald aspect is the quality of loving-kindness or compassionate consciousness. It affects the soul by making her sensitive, empathic, and attuned. The presence of the ruby aspect is the presence of strength, and it impacts the soul by making her courageous, bold, energetic, and capable of initiative. The ruby or strength aspect also impacts the mind of the soul by sharpening her discriminating intelligence. The presence of the water aspect is the presence of the quality of humanness. It affects the soul by making her gentle, exquisitely ordinary, and vulnerable without fear. Satisfaction is the presence of a particular aspect, so is fulfillment, and so is contentment. Spaciousness is the experience of the presence of the space aspect, which affects the soul by making her open and receptive, not controlled by mental positions.  

We Cannot Truly Recognize where We are Without Gentleness, Humanness, Humility

As human beings, we have always been vulnerable. Our natural state is to be undefended. In fact, the defensiveness of human beings, the sense of security that ego constructs by building defensive walls to hide or camouflage itself, is arrogant and even delusional. Because when it comes to real danger, we are vulnerable all the time; we can be damaged easily. For example, we are quite vulnerable physically. A little virus that you can’t even see can get you, and the next day you are on your back and you can’t even move. But our vulnerability is also the quality of our humanness. It is a heart quality of openness, of gentleness, that is needed for us to recognize where we are and to abide there. We cannot truly recognize where we are without that gentleness, that humanness, that humility. But that means we will find ourselves in a vulnerable condition. Vulnerability in the face of danger feels frightening, but in the absence of danger, vulnerability can simply mean feeling naturally, undefendedly yourself. So we have a dilemma. We are scared, we want to protect ourselves, but at the same time we want to be real. How are we going to solve this paradox? How do we protect ourselves against danger and still be real? We come back to the peach . . . You do things to take care of yourself. You get professional health care as you need it, you brush your teeth, you take reasonable precautions if you are walking through an unsafe neighborhood, you don’t hang out with gangs, and so on. You use your intelligence to do what is necessary—you defend yourself physically if that is called for—but inside you remain vulnerable, open, supple, gentle. And you begin to appreciate vulnerability as a human quality that gives us the openness to reality, to perception, to our True Nature in all of its manifestations. 

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