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Real Person

Diamond Approach

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

From the teachings of A.H. Almaas

What is Real Person?

Diamond Approach Teachings About: Real Person

Essence is the Real Person

Essence is the real person, the real and true self. The personality is called false because it is attempting to take the place of the essence. As we will see in the next chapter, the personality and the ego identity develop to fill the void resulting from the loss of essence in childhood. So it is really an impostor, trying to pretend it is the real thing. As we said above, the realm of experience of the personality is that of the mind, heart, and body and the energies that fuel them. This is why people take these aspects of experience to be the real thing. If the personality did not make this assumption, it would have to recognize that it is not the real thing, it is not the center of our life. This is tantamount to the personality allowing itself to die. In fact this event, or more accurately the death of the personality's belief in itself as the real thing, is the exact condition necessary for the realization of essence, for essence to become the center of our existence. So the opposition to the essence is really from the personality. The personality will do anything in its power to preserve its identity and uphold its domain. This tendency—or let's say, this need—is so deep, so entrenched, so completely the fabric of our identity, that only the person who has gone a long way toward establishing the essential life will be able fully to apprehend and appreciate this. This need is literally in our flesh, blood, bones, even our atoms. The power of the personality is so great, so immense, so deep, so subtle that the person who contends with it for a long time will have to give it its due respect. Its power is awesome. Its subtlety is unimaginable. Its intelligence is limitless.

Feeling Present as a Real Person

The sense of nobility and royalty is not only an association with the richness and abundance of essential experience, the manifestation of what Zimmer referred to as Teh; it is an actual feeling of royalty and nobility, a state where one feels of royal origin. Once in a while, a student reports the experience of the Personal Essence as accompanied by a feeling of royalty or regalness. One feels not only present as a real person, but because of the purity and preciousness of this reality, one attains a sense of being noble and royal. One feels oneself to be relaxed, settled, accepting of one’s nature, and secure. One is not only carefree and absolutely secure, but lives a life of value, preciousness, fulfillment and abundance. One feels like a prince or princess, a king or queen, master of one’s life, which is one’s dominion. The inner experience of Essence, with its richness, abundance, fullness and beauty is not envisioned by the ego, except in the stories of ancient royalty. However, it is an actual reality, a living experience, when the Personal Essence is realized.

Rarely Does the Real Person Get Expressed

In fact, most of the time people are really expressing their egos and superegos through their gait, their posture, their words, their emotions, their work, etc. Even the inhibition of certain emotions is an expression of the superego. Most people live and die expressing their egos and super egos, and rarely does the real person get expressed.

Real Humans are Magical Creatures

To be real means that we need to be able to live in a way that reflects the reality of what we truly are. It is important to recognize, however, that being real doesn’t happen in a moment. Learning what it means to be a real person is a process of unfoldment and transformation. It is not something you fall into or recognize all of a sudden, as it sometimes can be in the discovery of or awakening to true nature. It is a maturational process. And it begins with being honest, truthful, and real about where you are and investigating that. Every moment holds the possibility of more realness and more in-touchness with the presence of essential Being. We want to be human and we want to be real. Real humans are magical creatures, but they are rare. In fact, we are magical creatures beyond our wildest imagination. Hameed once said, “We are actually elephants trying to be butterflies.” And right after that, he said, “We are actually butterflies trying to be elephants.” The first statement reflects our belief that our earthbound self is a heavy, solid mass rather than the luminous colorful beauty of the liberated lightness of Being that we long to be. The second describes our forgotten lightness, as we become a worldly creature and take a more substantial form. Sadly, both statements reflect the unsatisfying existence of most human beings. Our actual situation is even stranger than that. We are not creatures of this world even though we live here. We are not born here and we don’t die here. Being emerges into time and space, creating time and space as it emerges into and as this world. Being arises in forms, birthing itself into existence. One of those forms is the human one, that of you and me, and that form changes all throughout life until it is shed, perhaps for other forms.

The Personal Essence is the Real Person, the Essential Person

Just as the sense of a separate individuality is the main outcome of the separation-individuation process, integrating into itself other parts of the ego, so the Personal Essence is the main development in essential realization, which integrates the other aspects of Essence into itself as it develops, as well as integrating the functional capacities of the various aspects. The Personal Essence is a central aspect because it is the real person, the essential person, which we have seen is the product of the complete metabolism of identification systems. Identifications, however, involve not only ego. There are superego identifications, for instance, that make up that structure of the mind. The metabolism of all identification systems leads not only to the realization of the Personal Essence, but also to the realization of all aspects of Essence. Each segment of identifications is connected to a certain essential aspect. The identifications responsible for the sense of individuality are the ones specifically connected to the Personal Essence. Other identifications are associated with other aspects. For instance, the identifications responsible for the sense of self or identity lead to the aspect of the true self, which is not the same as the Personal Essence. It is a sense of identity and not of individuality.

The Real Person of Presence

What we take to be a person from the ego standpoint is only the beginning of the real person. Being of the world is ego. A being that is beyond the world but able to be within it, this is what a true person is - "in the world but not of it," as the Sufis say. The true human being is the transcendent formlessness entering the world and expressing itself through the access route of individual consciousness as a personal presence. In this understanding, the Diamond Approach appreciates both the Western value of the individual and the Eastern value of the transcendent: the real person of presence is one who is held in the loving arms of the universe, inseparable from it in its glory and purity, and who functions as an individual in the world, inseparable from essence. If the ego is seen as the enemy, it will be regarded as something to bypass or transcend, and even to rid ourselves of. We are able to bypass or transcend the ego, but we can't get rid of it. We can, however, move beyond self-centerdness and ego concerns, and this is important for spiritual realization.

The Jeweled Path, pg. 114

To Be Truly Personal One Has to Be a Real Person

The true capacity to be personal does in fact arise around the time object constancy is achieved, and even when there is ego present, it is possible to be personal. But the capacity to be personal cannot be the capacity of an individuality based on ego identifications. To be truly personal one must have achieved a development beyond that of a coherent self-image. In other words, one has to be a real person, and perceive the other as a real person, as who he actually is, for there to be a real personal interaction. Otherwise, the interaction, although it feels personal and even intimate, is but an approximation of real personal interaction. And when one sees through one’s identifications with past object relations one becomes acutely conscious that this approximation is fake. One is shocked into the realization that his personal contact and consideration have always been vacuous, constituting nothing but the replay of past object relations, or the replay of an organization of those object relations. One was not making contact with the other person, and was not really considering the other person. He was considering somebody else, in fact, only an image of a person, an image which is not even an accurate image of the person he is interacting with.

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