Awakening Is Simple

You have been waiting for awakening so long and did a lot to reach it, can it really be true that awakening is simple?  It’s hard to believe, isn’t it?

When I thought about awakening, I always was in awe. That was so far away! I looked up to Prof. Nagaya, my Japanese Zen master in the 70ies. Would I ever get there?  Do you also have this reverent feeling when you hear the word awakening? Awakened, wow! You hear, somebody is awakened – that must be someone very special and holy.

in truth, awakening is neither holy nor far out of reach. Awakening is very simple and utterly ordinary and it is possible to awaken in this life. And it can be done sitting on the sofa and exploring experience.

When I saw through the illusion of ‘me’, I sat on the sofa, looking into a question. And all of a sudden, it was so clear that there was no ‘me’ thinking or experiencing. It had been right in front of my eyes all along. OMG, why had I not seen such a simple thing in 40 years of search? I felt really stupid.


What Does Awakening Mean?

It means that you experience whatever is without any added interpretations. You hear me say that over and over again, right?

Now, how do you do that? I’ll show you.


Let’s experiment

I’m assuming you are sitting right now. Feel the sensations that are connected to what we call “I am sitting”.

What can be felt? Is it your bottom on a chair or sofa? Tune in more closely. Do you actually feel your bottom or the sofa? What is really felt?

When you focus on what can actually be felt, it’s sensations of pressure or simply sensations.

Feeling these sensations, do they tell you where your bottom ends and the chair starts? Referring only to the felt sensations, can you know?

No, there are only nameless sensations. When we experience “in the felt only the felt”, only sensations are felt. “Chair” and “Bottom” were added to the experience. We have a mental image of what the body looks like and of the chair, we sit on, and add both to the nameless sensations.

Awakening is really as simple as sitting on the couch and looking into experience.


Were Thoughts Getting In The Way?

Did you find it difficult to focus on the sensations because there were so many thoughts and you got lost in them? That is great! You found out one reason, why in the felt there isn’t only the felt right now.

Don’t worry, it’s not a problem. Simply notice the sensations nevertheless. It’s very similar to talking to somebody in a noisy restaurant. You can either listen to all the noises, the music, the people talking, or to your friend who is telling you about the amazing adventure he had.


Why Awakening Is Simple

On this path to awakening, you will always simply focus on what is actually experienced, seeing the thoughts about the experienced for what they are: a cyber-reality that is not experienced with the senses.

If you have been on the path to awakening for some time, you certainly heard the statement that there is no reality as such, so why do I only exclude thoughts?

It’s true, there is no reality as such. But it can’t be seen straight away, there are too many interpretations in the way. It is easiest to see it in thoughts first. Everybody knows that what we imagine isn’t really there. Dreaming of your summer holidays, you know well that you are sitting at your desk in the office.

On the journey to awakening, you will apply this simple looking for what’s there and what isn’t to some key assumptions that are read into experience . And each time, you will ask this simple question: Is this really there or am I only thinking it is. Can it be experienced with the senses or am I imagining it?

This simple question will take you all the way to awakening and to a profound shift of experience.


You Don’t Find it Simple At All?

Are you already exploring experience and don’t find it simple at all? Usually, that happens when a lot of concepts come in. Go back to the simple inquiry. Which assumption or fetter are you looking into right now? Can it be found in direct experience, in the experience through your senses?

  • Where is this ‘me’ in you and how does it control everything?
  • Can you find desire and ill will, wanting and not wanting, sparking a reaction?
  • Where is this subject in experience, that seems to be the central point of view?
  • Where is the faculty of perception in you?
  • What is this subtle sense of “I am” made of and its border to everything else? Is there really a border?

Would you like to know more about how to simply experience what is, download the free course “The Key to Awakening”  where you’ll explore more deeply how experience actually feels.

Please share in the comments how it has been for you. Do you think awakening is something ever so far away, maybe even lifetimes? And how did the experiment go?

And if you have a friend who would love to awaken too, feel free to forward this email or share it on Facebook.


Picture: Courtesy Pixabay

Comments 6

  1. This is lovely and clear Christianne. So good to hear someone approach this is such a simple and accessible way. My experience has been that thought makes it seem so complicated! I hope many people get to read this post.

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      Dear Sagara,

      thank you for your reply! Yes, thoughts can make it all look so complicated. I always think of how it happened at the times when the Buddha taught. People came, sat down and listened to one lecture, and often that was all they ever were taught because the Buddha wandered around and didn’t come back into their area.

      And they gained stream-entry just listening to this one talk! It is still that simple, the scholarly approach has made it so darn complicated and impossible to see.


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  2. Is the seeing that there is no “me” is permanent ? I’m asking because in my case is not. Maybe I’m doing something wrong ?

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      Hi Richard,

      Yes, seeing that there is no ‘me’ is permanent. It basically happens in two steps, in which the ‘me’ is inquired into.

      In the first step, ‘me’ as the agent of everything, as the entity that thinks, experiences, decides, and acts is seen through in a shift.

      After this shift, the sense of ‘me’ will return, though it is no longer possible to experience the ‘me’ as an agent. It is even not possible to remember how it felt to be convinced, “I am thinking”.

      After other aspects of the self like wanting and not wanting, the subject-object split and the most basic phenomenal faculty of perception have been successfully inquired into, a subtle sense of “I am” or “I exist” remains.

      Since everything else is gone, it is very clear that it is there but somehow ungraspable. It’s like an itch you can’t scratch.

      When this subtle sense of “me-deeming” falls away, alls sense of self is gone and can no longer return.


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