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Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Primordial Womb of Stillness

It has occurred to me that not everyone may understand what I mean when I talk about being “in the Stillness,” or Silence. In my previous blog post I referred to “The Primordial Womb of Stillness” – and write about it in other blogs as well.. Recently I heard someone from a “spiritual community” comment that “stillness” was not for him – as if Stillness meant that he had to sit still, like an impatient two year old who just wants to run and play. This is not the kind of Stillness that I am referring to. Neither is this “being in Stillness” an esoteric idea that we just float around in the empty ethers of Nothingness.

For me Stillness, or Silence, is the Primordial womb of Being from which all things are birthed. It is equivalent to the words Awareness, Presence, Being, Consciousness, Spaciousness, the Vastness, the Formless, Existence, Isness, Knowing Awareness, Emptiness, Self, Source, Love – The Mystery. It’s not about being quiet, or sitting still, or sitting in stillness, or even meditating, although that is a part of it – for me. When I refer to the Stillness I am speaking of the deep, internal river of Stillness – awake, aware, dynamic, alive Stillness - that courses through us – the original Source of all being. THAT, that is the Stillness.

Stillness is not about being “quiet” – it IS Quietness Itself – the deep, internal, vibrant, full space of Quiet – Pure Awareness, Pure Consciousness that just IS. For me there is a movement to this Stillness – like the aurora borealis. It is not a dead zone, empty of life – but is the ground of all life. It IS Life…

It is the “Inner Being” that Eckhart Tolle talks about that one can feel experientially. And the voice of Stillness speaks when we listen internally – which, yes, may require a bit of the surface stillness as well. It is the Space of deep inward listening. It is a felt experience of our very Beingness. It is a dynamic flow. Ramana Maharshi refers to it as “the current.” I have recently referred to it as “The Rhythm.” Scott Kiloby refers to it as non-conceptual awareness. Adyashanti and Jean Klein call it – Silence. But it is the Silence that isn’t silent – the Stillness that isn’t still. You can feel it even when you are not “still” – even when you are surrounded by noise and chaos – even while doing mundane chores. It’s like tapping in to some internal channel, or flow that is always running, always humming - palpable. It is what sees through your eyes – the “stepping back into the Looking itself” in Zen. It’s called by many names. I just happen to call it Stillness because that resonates with me. And when I’m aware and listening, it draws me to it, beyond all the mind clutter, everyday chaos and the contractions of whatever experience I’m in at the moment. And it’s there even when I’m not particularly aware.

It is not surface tranquility. It is a deep place of rest. And all that’s needed is an internal gaze to see what’s really there underneath the surface. All it really “requires” is awareness – not sitting still. Although, I find that being still allows me to become more acutely *aware* of this Primordial Stillness within – the ever present Presence; as does creativity, and a myriad other activities. There are many ways of “entering”/experiencing the Stillness. Although technically we do not “enter” IT, it’s more of a relaxing in your natural state, *as* IT.

Like Awareness, Consciousness or Beingness – however one refers to it - Stillness is the container, or context, for all that is. Everything that we experience arises and falls back into this Embrace of Stillness. It holds and cradles all that is, as well as permeates all that is. It’s what invites us Home - to Itself. It IS Home. We ARE the deep Stillness, even if we’re not aware of it.... In good moods and bad moods, in contractions, fixations, in tragedies or in peace – it’s there underneath it all, inviting us to its embrace…

“To be aware of the embrace in which Existence holds us
is the greatest gift.”
Deva Premal

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