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Runaway Realization

Runaway Realization

The teaching in this book is off the map—because reality itself cannot be captured in a map. In fact, reality is far more alive, far more mysterious than anything we can conceive of. It is always revealing itself by knowing itself; and knowing reality and living it becomes the fulfillment of our life. A. H. Almaas, the originator of the Diamond Approach, here presents a new paradigm for understanding reality: the view of totality. He reveals that our life can become an endless revelation of reality, an adventure with neither beginning nor end.

Almaas introduces us to the view of totality, a view that holds all possible views as valid without limiting reality to any one of them. Rather than holding fast to any one ultimate truth, the view of totality recognizes that no single view or combination of views can exhaust the richness of reality. The view of totality includes all possible views—the dual, the nondual, the unilocal, the theistic, the scientific, the philosophic, and others—without reducing them to mere iterations of a single truth (as do the perennial

It is as we move toward living and expressing our realization—instead of just discovering and abiding in it—that we begin to discern new possibilities. How does reality manifest itself in action, in expression? How does realization live? If life is the life of reality, does a human life still have meaning? What is the point of the particular individual?

Although in this book I am not discussing reality in terms of aspects, vehicles, or dimensions, which have all been integral to what I have written so far and to how we have been working all these years, I am not discounting any of those things either. The aspects, vehicles, and dimensions of the teaching constitute what some people have come to refer to as the map of the Diamond Approach. The teaching in this book is off the map. It is outside of all previous articulations of the Diamond Approach. We are in uncharted territory. This new view, which I call the view of totality, reveals that the Diamond Approach cannot be mapped because reality itself cannot be captured in a map. Reality is not a monolithic, static truth that can be defined in a fixed way. It is actually way more alive and mysterious than that. We might feel chagrined by this if we believe that we have reached some final, eternal truth about reality; or we might feel delighted by the freedom of not having an end or a goal to reach. Regardless of how we feel about it, recognizing this indeterminacy of reality is crucial to living our realization and our freedom. - A. H. Almaas

Available at Shambhala Publications or most book retailers.

"As we awaken to the field of aliveness in which we live, we enter the realm of this magnificent and important book. Almaas combines penetrating insight with clear communication to describe the self-sustaining fire of awareness awakening to itself. He challenges us to see the profound depth of our freedom as beings of cosmic aliveness who are learning to live in a living universe. A gem of a book! " —Duane Elgin, author of The Living Universe, Awakening Earth, and Voluntary Simplicity

"It's exhilarating to see a master teacher break free and clear—even of his own teaching! This book confirms suspicions that have long been growing in me and encourages me even more to trust my own inner compass as I bushwhack my way along the pathless path. Runaway Realization offers an inviting and hopeful alternative vision of the mature stages of spiritual life, served up with the author's signature clarity and a newfound note of gentleness." —Cynthia Bourgeault, author of The Holy Trinity and the Law of Three

"Beyond duality and nonduality, the realizations voiced here are like the immediacy and laughter of Zen, expressions of untethered freedom beyond fixed view, the joy of letting go, embracing paradox, liberating wisdom, a gift of grace."  —Jack Kornfield, author of A Path with Heart



1.   Continual Practice
2.   The Enlightenment Drive
3.   Motiveless Practice
4.   Practice to No End
5.   Uncaused Realization
6.   Non-Self-Centered Practice


7.   Opening Time and Space
8.   Total Being
9.   The Organ of Realization
10.   The Dynamic of Realization
11.   The Paradox of Nondoing
12.   The Mystery of Emptiness
13.   Delusion beyond Realization 


14.   Steps to Nowhere
15.   Total Nonconceptuality
16.   Featureless True Nature
17.   Not One, Not Two
18.   Total Freedom



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