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Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Peace?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Peace

Coming from Peace and Stillness

When you really see that the nature of the personality is reactivity, a cyclic reactivity, when you see the whole cycle of ego activity based on hope, desire and rejection, it is possible that the activity will cease, and peace and stillness will arise. Then it is possible to understand what Being is. When this happens, you’ll discover that even if there is action and activity, where you come from is peace and stillness. This peace and stillness that you are coming from is exactly what your ego resists most of all. In fact, the first experience of peace is what the ego is trying to cover up with its reactivity. It is a kind of death experience, because you experience nothing there, just complete, absolute silence and blackness. That is peace, complete peace. There is no action, no reaction, no nothing. Just complete silence, complete peace. You might actually be engaged in some activity, but where you are coming from, your fundamental attitude, is that there is no reaction to anything, no rejection of anything. If you allow this to happen, then it is possible to know what Being is. Essentially, this experience of peace, of death, is that you are not reacting, and that you are not. There is precisely the feeling of “I am not.” I am not, and so there is no reactivity. The full experience of Being is a little beyond this, is more a feeling that “I am,” but I am not reacting.

Presence of Being as Absolute Stillness

Peace: It is not an emotional state or merely the absence of conflict; it is rather the presence of stillness, which is an aspect of Essence. It is the Presence of Being as absolute stillness and calmness. This stillness is not experienced as dull or vague, but as an exquisitely alive kind of consciousness. Peace involves the cessation of the torturous ego activity, with its hopes, and desires, efforts and resistances. That is why it is often equated with ego death. Peace is actually both death and life in the same consciousness.

Seeking, We Move Away from the Source of Pleasure and Peace

Peace is the absence of suffering. One reason for suffering is that most people are not looking for peace; they are looking for pleasure. Peace is not a top priority for most people; pleasure usually comes first. Therefore, people seek pleasure. There is nothing wrong with wanting pleasure, nor with pleasure itself. But what leads to the absence of peace is seeking pleasure, for the simple reason that seeking pleasure assumes that pleasure is somewhere else, some other time, in a different situation, and not here and now. That is the basic premise of seeking, not only pleasure, but seeking anything, including peace. When we seek, we are moving away from the pleasure or peace and from the source of pleasure and peace. So when I say to not do absolutely anything, I mean not to seek—not to seek for pleasure, or peace, or security, or love, or anything at all—because implicit in the activity of seeking is that there is something to do, or to arrive at. Seeking assumes that there is something to be found, someplace to be reached, some goal to be arrived at. It is amazing to see multitudes of people—almost everyone—searching for something that would be there if they merely stopped the search, and which cannot be there until they stop searching. People tend to believe that first they must find what they seek and then they will stop. The truth is that the finding can happen only when the search stops. This is the absurdity of most of our activities and preoccupations—we are seeking something and by this very act of seeking, we get farther away from that which we seek. This observation reflects a perspective most people do not share. From the conventional perspective, it sounds absurd. Even people who know this from their own experience do not remain convinced enough to actually change their behavior of seeking. They still don’t believe that the pleasure, the peace, the love, the fulfillment, is right here, now.

The Cosmic Sleep, the Cosmic Night, the Deepest Peace

Losing the notion of existence doesn’t mean you cease to exist. But the desire is exactly for that: absolute cessation. You wish that you would disappear, that you would cease to know that you had ever appeared. This is the deepest wish, the wish for the most fundamental dimension. And the deep love is a deep fear too, because of the attachment to existence. You realize that your nature can be neither described nor known. You can’t say that you exist, and you don’t know that you don’t exist. If you know that you don’t exist, you exist. Complete nonexistence is complete cessation of consciousness, of knowingness. It is the cosmic sleep, the cosmic night. It is the deepest peace. This is not a permanent state of realization, but a phase for the deeper realization. What is called the divine coma, where there is no experience of sensation or perception, becomes the rite of entry into the realm of mystery, the mystery of the Absolute. To wake up from this divine coma without leaving the mystery of the Absolute is total peace and cessation of suffering. You realize that the end of suffering is not happiness but peace. From that peace arise happiness, fulfillment, love, and all the qualities of being.

The Experience of Peace Descending in Our Inner World

This development of the subtle capacities occurs specifically through the activation of the Black latifa, at the center of the forehead. The arising of this essential aspect means the opening up of this center, which we experience as the essence of peacefulness—a quiet and still presence, satin-smooth and luminously black. It is the presence of consciousness as stillness. Our mind becomes quieter, and at times completely still and clean. The totality of our consciousness—the whole experiential field of the soul—is stilled. This is the experience of peace descending in our inner world. The descent of peace brings up a new quality of Essence, with all of its properties and capacities to support our inquiry, but it also activates the subtle centers, the subtle capacities of perception. The primary perceptual center is the Black latifa, at the center of the forehead. It is also the center of the operation of the Diamond Guidance itself. During inquiry, the Guidance tends to operate as a presence at the center of the forehead. That is why you get clear and crisp in your head when you understand something.

The Nature of Mind as Black Peace Perceiving Emptiness

The awake, clear mind can go to sleep and still stay conscious. It has its night beside its day; its day is awakeness, its sleep is peace. It remains the nature of the mind, not as awakeness perceiving emptiness, but as peace, universal, unbounded, black peace, perceiving emptiness. Different systems emphasize one of three descriptions: the primordial non-differentiated consciousness; the awakened state of mind which is also universal; or the peaceful state of mind which is at rest, in complete peace. The nature of mind then can be experienced as blue, clear, or black aspects of consciousness. Each one of these can be considered a state of the nature of the mind. But we can say further that the nature of the mind is complete emptiness. We can experience complete emptiness as non-differentiated consciousness or as translucency, or as the night sky. There is always a subtle consciousness that perceives emptiness. The subtle consciousness can be restricted by your own personal consciousness, so that you don’t see it as it is, or it can be expanded completely.

The Power of Being is Just an Active Manifestation of Peace

Power gives all the essential qualities an added force, efficiency, and speed. But what actually is the power of Being? The power of Being is just an active manifestation of peace, a dynamic application of stillness. It is not a pushing, it is not a destructiveness. When peace touches the soul, it simply stills it. All of her activities, agitation, and reactions simply dissolve the moment the presence of stillness touches them. They are annihilated. That is the power of stillness, the Peace aspect of Essence. So the power of our Being is an annihilating force, which annihilates ego attitudes and positions by revealing that they don’t truly exist. The power of Peace takes everything back to its original source, which is total stillness. All of the qualities of Essence color the field of the soul in their own likeness when they touch it. In fact, the soul transforms into the very quality that touches her. So when the Black Essence touches the manifestations of the soul, it brings them back to its own nature, which is peacefulness, and the Peace of true nature is a sense of stillness in which nothing stirs. It is total stillness, which, when precisely understood, turns out to be one hundred percent annihilation. It is an intense sensitivity, but the sensitivity has become so intense that it is absolute, for absolutely nothing stirs.

When Peace is Absolute Because there is Absolutely Nothing to Disturb It

Exactly. When the body is relaxed and balanced and has no tension, there are no boundaries. Boundaries are tensions in the body. The experience of boundaries goes along with tensions in the body. The body armor is the boundary. When the body is balanced, relaxed, there is no need for boundaries. So you could say that some self-realization can be done physically. In the end, self-realization is the completely relaxed body, nothing else. When the body is completely relaxed, it is a window to the universe. That window allows the possibility of perception, awareness and experience. When the body goes, the window is gone, which is a further development, a greater opening. It does not mean that the window is closed; it means that the whole universe becomes the window. Then there is nothing to see. And each transition brings a deeper peace. Each time there is a loss of self or self-identity there is a deeper peace. Peace and stillness. Until you get to the complete absence; then peace is absolute because there is absolutely nothing to disturb it. Absolutely nothing, not even the knowing that there is peace. The moment that you know there is peace, there is a little disturbance someplace because there is self-reflection. But absolute peace means that there is absolute peace without the awareness that there is peace. Complete unification, no reflection. And when the peace is absolute, the clarity is absolute. When there is absence, there is absolute clarity. Clarity is everywhere and everything.

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