Wei Wu Wei (Terence Gray) said:
Doing away with the I-notion is the same as not desiring the personal attainment of enlightenment.
Not desiring that (the ‘last desire’, the ‘last barrier’) is ‘having it’, for ‘having it’ is in any case merely being rid of that which concealed what is forever that which alone we are.
Therefore not desiring personal attainment of that is at the same time the elimination of the I-notion which constitutes its concealment.
The Idea of liberation automatically inhibits the simple realization that we are free.
Who or What is there to “get rid of the I-notion”? If a Being has or possesses an Intellect, which handles ideas or notions, including “I” or “me” or “this self”, and that same time-space abstract causal Intellect is mirrored in the human brain (where it shines through the right eye during the daily sensory cognition state), then the Being Who or That decides upon hearing that the “I” notion is to be “got rid of” is accepting the suggestion that the ultimate issue or quest of the Being is strictly in the faculty of Intellect that creates, maintains or destroys concepts. But how can that directly apply to the Being Who or That is the Owner of an Intellect? Since the Noumenal Being is “already free” and beyond the illusion of an intellectual “I”, the Cartesian “I think therefore I am”, the Intellect conjuring up a continuous thinking ego is not the real problem. Even if the Intellect-as-mirrored-in-the-Brain undergoes a Buddhist training to disbelieve in an “I” and learns to suppress or destroy such a terrible heresy, there remains the Real I or Self Who is That Being Who or That owns the Causal Intellect and the Brain that reflects it. Hence, “getting rid of the I-notion” is simply a category error. The Transcendental Being of Nondual Awareness or Buddha Self-nature, does not have to get rid of anything real, nor does it have to get rid of anything unreal, for anything unreal is not there to be “got rid of”! Awakening to the Real automatically dissolves illusory subjects or objects, as well as illusory freedom or bondage. I Myself once repeated “me” over and over again to find the truth of it. When its nothingness was revealed, I found myself boundlessly and ecstatically Enlightened. No thought or notion of “I” was relevant before or after. I was not seeking an Enlightenment. I simply wanted to totally penetrate the truth of Myself as “me” or objective, bodily subject or self. The objective “me” could not withstand all-out Self-inquiry. The penetrating introspection as a burning desire for the truth of “me” had a stupendous and unexpected consummation. In fact, I did not consider Myself a Buddhist at the time and had no notion of achieving whatever Buddha had achieved. I became a spontaneous Buddha simply through an upsurge of good roots in My causal body. That is why all throughout My life I have always known there is no real substitute for a real innate talent for the Sudden Enlightenment of Zen. Only Beings on the verge of Enlightenment with Great Potential are going to fully enter into all this. Others will just build up teachings in their heads and pretend they are Zen Masters who can compassionately “Enlighten others”. Nonetheless, such people are basically helpless and cannot do otherwise, like children who make imaginary cookies and cakes of mud. These are more to be pitied than blamed.
Now, let us return to the central issue of a Supracausal Self that can be self-revealed beyond any level, principle or tattwa of body as an objective “me”. At whatever level, gross or subtle or beyond to the Nth subtlety, to have the experience of a continuously existing self, there must be a conscious memory of experience and knowledge stored in the body-at-hand as an objective “me”. Even an “ultimate transcendental self” implies an accumulating, living, ultimate and transcendental memory with ultimate transcendental life and light-of-consciousness functioning in an ultimate transcendental body. With the awakening of a higher “me”, the lower, usual, everyday “me” seems like a mere dream-bubble, a mere ghost of its former seemingly solid reality. The higher “Me” or “Self” is on an infinitely vertical sliding scale of relative being of Self-hood. Hence, what is called “Self-realization” simply implies the new higher experiences being built-up in the supracausal body and beyond. We become superhuman, new born Godlings, but that is not final. There is no theoretical limit to higher more spiritual and seemingly real Selfhood. Ultimately and even beyond ultimately, any Self level of spirit-body-memory objectively gets reduced to a non-duality of subjective body as an objective self alongside an objective nonduality as a subjective realm.
If we progress ever upward in subtler and more spiritual “incarnations” of “Self”, there is no theoretical limit of the number of dimensions, space and time-continuities as memory, for in truth, living memory is both selfhood and time. Hence, Self and Time are like infinite vertical layers of physical grosshood (material bodies) on up. Spirit is therefore nothing but subtler matter; Matter is therefore nothing but grosser spirit. Since life and consciousness can function on any level of body in any dimension, there is no “highest” or “lowest” body, memory or selfhood. And, since Gross or Subtle Matter and Spirit are relative, so are Object and Subject, Thingness and Emptiness, Phenomenon and Noumenon, Being and Non-Being or any other conceptual pairs.
There is no “highest”, “ultimate” or “absolute” Self, I, Me, You or Them. It is like a Russian doll, but with endless dolls-within-dolls, which I call Pyajadeva, “Onion God”. Hence there is no “highest” or “final” spiritual realization, mastery, godhood, selfhood, Buddha-nature or Enlightenment. This does not mean we should become stagnant and refuse to take our next Evolutionary Step, but rather we should simply see that any step for any being is never more than a step, just as there is always a higher and presently inconceivable or unknowable Truth or Reality. And just as Ascendent Beings are eternally ascending, there are Involutionary, Descendent Beings that are eternally descending, which men and women of the Earth call Devas, Asuras, Angels, Demons, Djinns, Nature Spirits, Inorganic Beings and so on. There is also no turning point infinitely Above or infinitesimally Below where an Ascendent Being becomes Descendent or an Descendent Being become Ascendent, though sometimes there are episodal short-circuits in Total Existence where an Ascendent Being suffers a partial downfall or undoing of Evolution and a Descendent Being suffers an updraft or partial undoing of its Involution. Hence, Ascendent beings can be temporarily entrapped and undone to some degree by Involutionary beings as a false escape from the pains and sufferings of Evolution, just as Descendent beings can be temporarily entrapped and undone to some degree by Evolutionary beings as a false escape from the difficulties of Involution. However, it is also possible for Evolutionary and Involutionary beings to boost one another’s Evolution or Involution by making temporary alliances that do not involve entrapment or mutual destruction.
Illusion is the only Reality; Reality is the
only Illusion; Phenomena are the only Noumenon;
Noumena are the only Phenomenon; Objects are the
only Subject; Subjects are the only Object. Also, as the Third Zen Patriarch
once said, “Big things are as little as little things can be and little
things are as big as big things can be”. This means every Macrocosm is an
infinitesimal Microcosm to the recursive Macrocosm beyond it and every
Microcosm is an infinite Macrocosm to the recursive Microcosm below
it. Hence, Involutionary Descendent Beings descend from
Macrocosms above to Microcosms below in endless descending octaves of
Total Recursion, whereas, Evolutionary Ascendent
Beings ascend from Microcosms Below to Macrocosms Above in endless
ascending octaves of Total Recursion. All these vertically and
horizontally profound insights are the Hua Yen
Philosophy of Mahayana Buddhism. Its Chinese Founder was Fa Tsang, A.D.
642-712. Nothing in Greek or
European Philosophy or Science has ever even entered the kindergarten
cosmic realities of Hua Yen. Even the most profound Vedantic Sages of Ancient India never got to this
level of Macrocosmic and Microcosmic Insight and Realization. Also, without Hua Yen, the Zen Sect of China,
There is no top for Ascendent beings, no bottom for Descendent beings. Yet, the Boundless Sky and the Bottomless Abyss are One Fundamental Polarity. This Eternal Polarity is the Tao, which is an eternal mystery for all beings. Every instant of an atomic pulse is one eternity of an expanding-contracting universe of matter and anti-matter. There are uncountable beginnings in the Great Beginningless Beginning; uncountable endings in the Great Endless Ending. Therefore, our limited vision of Self-Being and Objective-Time is worse than pathetic, a mere physiological existentialism that has wholly misunderstood the Beginningless before birth and the Endless after death.
There is always the next “highest awakening beyond the apparent highest”! As for the “Timeless” state, it is merely Higher Time looking at Lower Time.
To get directly clear about all this is to enter into the Unknowable and transmute it into the Unknown as an ascendent journey of Evolutionary Being, which is Greater Zen beyond Lesser Zen. Bodhidharma, for instance, is merely the founder of Lesser Zen, just as Gautama Buddha is the founder of Lesser Buddhism. Such founders were useful beginnings, but far more is required on the ever-ascending way of personal cosmic progress. There can be no Final Truth or Ultimate Cosmic Doctrine. Even Hua Yen, as vast as it became when Nagarjuna learned it from Extraterrestrial Intelligences (Aliens, Nagas) is only a limited portion of a much vaster Teaching extant in the Galaxy, the Universe, the Omniverse and the Grand Entity. There are levels of Cosmic Knowledge that would literally fry your brain if installed into your brain by an Alien Inculcation Device! This is no joke! In fact, you are probably lucky, Earthling, that you (A) Do not believe there are Aliens with such psycho-organic learning devices (B) Do not have access to Aliens and their accelerated learning devices.
Where does all this leave us? Fundamentally, any objective “thing” is a mere projection of the body-consciousness that receives unknown input from a level of existence. Also, it is the very projection of objective “things” by the bodily cognition mechanism that gives bodily cognition the imaginary notion that it is a Subject, a Self, a Seer, a Perceiver, a Physical Experiencer “who” was born at birth and dies at death. The bodily cognition thus projects its objective world and injects its bodily selfhood or “me”. The bodily cognition on any level of seemingly being a subject perceiving objects is in each and every case a device whereby the non-duality of a bodily realm is interpreted as a duality. Nonetheless, pure unqualified Voidness is beyond even the potentially subtlest or most spiritual bodily “Extremely Highest Selfhood”. The Absolute Void is only conceivable and not experiencable. It represents Infinite, Total Non-Being beyond all possible Transcendental Being.
There is no real totally bodiless “Self” because Selfhood requires accumulation of memories on the level of existence in question. A “Self” without body, memory or Time is an empty fantasy based on ignorance of the relativity of the dimensions or planes of Existence. That there is always a higher plane of Self-existence is Evolution. That there is always a lower plane of Self-existence is Involution.
The fundamental Cognitive Center that moves up to higher planes of Self-existence as an “Ascendent Entity” or moves down to lower planes of Self-existence is what the Nagual Seers of Mexico call “The Assemblage Point”, while the Ancient Zen Masters of the Tsao-Tung Sect recognize five (5) levels of relationship of Host (Higher Self) and Guest (Lower Self). In terms of Theosophy, there are (1) physical body, (2) astral body, (3) causal body, (4) monad and (5) Logos. But these five (5) levels of Self-existence are merely a fivefold cross-section of infinite planes of vertical matter/Spirit, as I have already explained.
An Ascendent Being ever seeks the Core of Cognition on ever higher planes of Self-existence. A Descendent Being ever seeks the Outermost Cognizable Object on ever lower planes of Self-existence. Neither is ever going to make it.