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Light (Pure Light)

Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Light (Pure Light)?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Light (Pure Light)

Beginning to Recognize the Divine Coming Through All Forms

If you really love, you see the whole picture. If you truly love somebody, you see that he or she is not different from the divine. So when you love this person, you love the divine—if the love is complete. And if you love the divine, you don’t love only one person; you love everything and everybody, because the divine comes through everything and everybody. So, as you begin to recognize the divine coming through all forms, all bodies, and all manifestations, your perception changes. It is the same mountain and, at the same time, it is transparent. It is as though you could see through the rocks, through the trees. It is not that you see objects behind other objects because things are physically transparent; that is not what we mean. You are able to see through everything, to the center of the universe, to the essence of it. You look at the mountain and into the mountain, and it opens into inner space and pure light, but it is still the mountain.

Consciousness Pervaded and Transformed by the Pure Light of the Diamond Guidance

When inquiry opens up the soul and orients her toward receptivity to guidance, one may experience the arising of the Guidance as a descent of presence. The Diamond Guidance descends, and it is as if a spaceship has just landed. The power and magnificence of the descent is not unlike what was portrayed at the end of the movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind, when the mother ship lands. The air becomes electrified; all is still and yet pulsing with a brilliance of dancing colors and qualities. One may hear the powerful hum of the spaceship’s engines. One can feel a sense of elegance and delicacy. Then consciousness begins to attain a quality of precision, a quality of brilliance, and a quality of exquisite, sharp clarity. It is no longer the normal consciousness that is inquiring but the consciousness pervaded and transformed by the pure light of the Diamond Guidance—the variegated, precise, diamond-like brilliance. One may become aware of a sense of divinity and purity, a sense of otherworldliness that has come into this world.

In the Nonconceptual Pure Light of Awareness there is No Knowing

So in the nonconceptual, pure light of awareness, there is no knowing, but there is no deficiency either. I don’t become like a cow, and I am not a stupid saint. It is not that I don’t know because there is something wrong with my brain, or because I am stupid or I lack information or I haven’t inquired enough. The reason I don’t know is that I am perceiving things from a place that is prior to knowing, that is more fundamental than knowing. When the knowing tries to go to that place, it just dissolves and becomes pure transparent light.

Just Pure Light

The Absolute and the Nameless are both nonconceptual. With the Nameless there is consciousness, and the Absolute is beyond consciousness. It’s the difference between the night and day. The night is Absolute, and the day is the Nameless or the nonconceptual. There is light. This light doesn’t bring any particular knowledge; it’s just pure light.

Pure Awareness, the Pure Light of Our Being where the Mind is Dissolved in Wonder

So we could say that there are three different kinds of not knowing:

  • “I don’t know, and I don’t know that I don’t know.” This is pure ignorance and darkness, for I believe I know many things. The knowing mind is present.
  • “I don’t know, and I know that I don’t know.” This is awakening to my condition.
  • “I don’t know, and I don’t know that I don’t know.” This is pure realization, light, no darkness, but the knowing mind is absent.

Zen masters have expressed these as: First there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is a mountain. On the journey, first we find out that we don’t know. Then we begin to know. We come to know more and more until we pass through all the knowledge and beyond it. When we stay with our inquiry until everything—all the details—have been revealed, then we arrive at the source from which all the knowledge springs: the pure awareness, the pure light of our Being, where the mind is dissolved in wonder.

The Essence of the Essence is Pure Light

Understanding is like a prism. If you have pure light passing through a prism, you have different colors. They are creativity and beauty; they are the forms of light. That is the life. Without the prism, it is just light by itself, with no differentiation. You don’t see anything. But through understanding, you come in time to understand the whole thing, the whole process. Nothing needs to be done; you just see. That’s understanding, that’s life, that’s reality, that’s the unknowable. You know the whole thing, not just one part. We can see how each sector of the personality relates to one of the colors of the prism. Our method—the Diamond Approach—allows us to see this connection. One sector is connected to the red, one to the green, one to the yellow, and so on. By seeing the connections, you start experiencing the colors, the aspects of Essence, which are not only color, but pure light as well. If you know the colors of the prism, it’s easier. The next step is to know light with no color, which is the unknowable. That’s our approach. First you know the aspects of Essence, and then you know they are Being, they are light. But, you’re still looking at the color. You see the prism itself, and you see that understanding is the prism that’s creating all these colors. Then it is possible to see the actual beingness of the colors, of the aspects. You see compassion, for instance, as Being, and you say, “I am compassion, I am love.” But, if you just say “I am,” if you look at the “I am” quality of the aspect without looking at the compassion quality, that is the unknowable. Of course, you could say, “Oh, it’s clear, or it’s yellow or pink,” and it would be a correct perception from a certain level. However, if you go deep into the actual nature, the essence of Essence, it is pure light with no color. It is light before its differentiation into the spectrum. And what do you say about that? It’s light. What do you see? You could say it’s nothing, because you don’t see anything. For you to see something, it must have a reflection. But, the moment it has a reflection, it has a color—the color of its reflection. But what is the color of the light? In fact, you can’t say anything, but you know it has to be there.

The Moment Consciousness Arises, the Absolute Becomes Aware of It as Pure Light, Pure Radiance

In the Sufi tradition they say that God existed in the beginning as his own Essence, God’s own identity and nature, which is the Absolute. God said, “I am a hidden treasure. I wanted to be known, so I created the Universe in order to be known.” How can the Absolute be known if it does not become something else? How, unless it becomes consciousness and then the world? As the Absolute, God does not know Himself. So to know Himself, God created everything. Then, because there is consciousness, He could say, “Ah, here’s our mind! Isn’t that wonderful!” This is one story to explain what we are talking about today, one way of looking at it. We don’t really know whether God did it that way, but it makes sense. This story can explain the creation of all these gradations of reality. The Absolute is a pure awareness that is not aware of itself, but it is aware of anything that comes out of itself. The moment consciousness arises, the Absolute becomes aware of it as pure light, pure radiance. So you can be the Absolute being aware of the nonconceptual. Or you can lose the Absolute and become just the nonconceptual. You can be just the nonconceptual experiencing the nonconceptual, which you experience as just pure awareness without anything to know. Or you could be the nonconceptual and be aware of the Absolute. And then you know the Absolute. That is how we can talk about the Absolute and its absence of qualities. At any level of experience, you can perceive both the more superficial realms and the next deeper realm. Except if you go to the Absolute, there’s only one way to go, which is towards the more superficial. If you are in the personal mind, there’s also only one way to go, which is towards the deeper. The Absolute is the most fundamental, and the personal mind is the most superficial.

Two Worlds

But, again, just to be in the spiritual and forget the world will feel to most people not completely satisfying, regardless of how blissful their spiritual experience. Even the experience of the spiritual ground—when we get to our spiritual home and are living in that intimacy—is beautiful, but at some point, it feels like something is not right, not complete. And we begin to be aware that “Yes, I love the spirit—but I also love the world.” Whenever we emphasize one part at the expense of the other, we begin to feel a state of incompleteness. Many of us do a lot of things to attempt to bring the two together, to harmonize the two loves. And some of you have seen how, when you really feel the love, it is not two loves. But our heart is divided mainly because of our mind. Our mind believes that there are two worlds, two realities. One is the physical world—the everyday world of me, you, everybody else; the houses, cars, planets, and galaxies. The other is the world of spirit, the world of mystery—the unseen, invisible world, the world of total harmony, the world of purity, of pure light, pure radiance, perfect presence, the world of the divine. For a long time throughout the inner journey, we tend to think that there are two kinds of experience, as if there were two realities, two worlds. Even when we have a spiritual experience, we imagine that it came from somewhere else, from the “other world,” from spirit, or from the spiritual dimension. So there is a division in our mind, a duality. We believe in a duality between the world and the spirit, between matter and spirit, between the body and spiritual nature. This is a deeply held belief, very profound. It is not a matter of conscious, mental conviction. You may study and believe in the teachings of nonduality, but the way you are in the world will exemplify your actual underlying convictions.

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