On the edge of Silence
I was asked a very important question recently by Ben on the Self Realisation Community Forum on my website who was sharing his experience:
I had a deep experience last night. Eternal silence was there but the ego was scared. Scared that there would be no more thoughts and thoughts came to try to understand how that would work. It concluded that it would be like death/eternal silence and wouldn’t come back.
But really – this is all the ego is, one thought at a time. But experience is literally one moment at a time, with or without thought.
In your experience after having reality reveal itself to itself, are there any more thoughts? Has the ego ‘died’?
Do you have a thought such as ‘ooh, its a bit hot, I may have to take my jumper off’, then the jumper comes off?
Or is experience just happening – jumper comes off without a thought to comment on it?
The ego likes to question too/ There is an assumption that eternal silence means, cessation of egoic thoughts and questions. Once these stop there is complete understanding, or more like – these stop after complete understanding.
Are there thoughts of commentary and questions after reality is seen?”
Ben, I am delighted to say, was happy for me to share his experience and my response on the main site since what it reveals are some profoundly important insights. So here is what emerged to share with Ben:
Let’s take it step by step.
So in the experience it reads to me like you were on the ‘edge’ so to speak of dissolving into and, what is more important, AS the Eternal and Infinite Silence. It’s expressed that way since fear reared it’s head and that is only a function of ego identification. This fear that you are speaking of and pointing too is ego’s greatest… the fear of its demise. Death of the ego, or perhaps a bit more accurately, death of identification with ego and the all the suffering that comes along with it.
Facing this fear ‘head on’ so to speak, that is allowing it to be present, and crucially first trusting it then becomes the knowing that you really are the Infinite Silence itSELF will dissolve this fear and the Realisation will be unequivocal. Beautiful and most definitely beyond words.
Ego wouldn’t be possible without thoughts is another way of putting it. It would literally and metaphorically die.
I understand Ramana Maharshi, a Realised being (may have been him) was once asked “How much ego does one need?” The answer is illuminating and it’s reported to go something like this:
“Just enough to cross the road safely.”
What this means is that for the practical purposes of inhabiting the physical body vehicle it is wise for now to treat it with respect and as apparently separate from the oncoming traffic. However, that is as far as it goes. Look after the body but know you are not it. So we can see from this that this is a purely practical thing. Thought energy is certainly a part so to speak in allowing the divine illusion to manifest. The problem, the suffering occurs only with identification and belief in the thought energy… “I am this body, the story of this body, the experiences of this body, the relationships of this body and so on and on and on….
This answer, if it was him, is insightful. Ramana also refers to ego as like a knot between the body and the absolute, source, Infinite Silence whatever words you like. ‘I’d’probably refer to it as more of tie… feels a bit lighter but the pointing is the same.
What has died then is the identification with the tie or knot and all its meanderings. This is the liberation or Realisation expressed differently.
There’s another important awareness here also that one is at choice in the manifestation in the form to let it go at any time. To choose the moment the body passes and to completely merge with the Silence – no body. We call this death but the SELF never dies just the form.
When bodies do die this choice is there also. Some come back the near death experience. Many don’t as the journey in this form has come to its chosen end. The particular expression may rebirth in another body. The Realisation is ultimately inevitable in this form or another form. It is the inevitability of the Universe that the SELF will always be Realised or remembered. So that is beyond words beautiful.
So the gift of life in the form is to Realise the SELF experientially – Life’s greatest and simplest gift I call it from itSELF unto itSELF.
Without being-ness the first born of the Silence and form experience would not be possible (the creation of space and time). In the absolute or Infinite Silence there is no experience. Just AWARENESS of itSELF as itSELF.
A KNOWING that is not of things but of itSELF. What became clear in the Realisation is that it, the SILENCE chose to manifest in the form… and in this form it chose for itSELF to be known as Infinite Silence… one could say that it was in this ‘expression’ the form reemerged of this body for an eternity the body was not there then it was all NOW!
So some thought energy may appear but it is no longer the controlling factor. It is a ‘LOT’ quieter and simply if one’s awareness is focussed in and as the Silence there are no thoughts. However, we do live in a physical vehicle and that needs some attention so there will be thoughts here and there but there isn’t identification with them. They have no power unless you choose to give it to them. Not a great idea.
Awareness switches them ‘off’ instantly.
In writing something like this there is no idea what will be said. One is simply open and the perfect words emerge for this moment. They carry the signature of the Silence which will transport you beyond the words.
It, awareness, that is the controlling function. “Ah this body is a little hot, jumper comes off” to use your words. May be a thought will appear also but awareness comes before thought! Yes, awareness comes before thought. This is true even if the SELF has not been Realised, however, the identification with ego mind thoughts is strong and it will appear like thought is the only factor but it isn’t!
As the Realisation is ‘anchored’ so to speak there won’t be any questions about itSELF. It has become and merged with the KNOWING. The KNOWING knows it IS the KNOWING, the AWARENESS and there is no doubt about it.
There may ‘appear’ to be an anchoring phase and the body is likely to ‘need’ some time to ‘catch up’ so to speak. That is, the awareness has shifted but the denser body vehicle is adjusted to this new frequency to ’embrace’ it. This may involve a number of energetic adjustments and releases of past energies which have been previously been apparently stuck in its energy system (the emotional body or pain body must also be dissolved). It may last some time but there is no identification now it just takes place automatically when it does.
So there is no doubt about the SELF and as is mentioned the body energies may need a bit of time to adjust.
As it is anchored the awareness of the wisdom starts to present itself. For instance, when a question is asked there is no idea what will be said it just emerges like it has been ‘said’ but in a non-personal way. It was and IS the Silence itSELF that was and IS using the vehicle of the form to express itSELF and the communication is not just at the physical level but at ALL levels at once.
There is no identification (suffering) with personhood left. There is a unique and divine expression of itSELF like a facet in a diamond along with the knowing one is the whole diamond as well.
This can be expressed this way also:
Who am I? The question dissolves the questioner and the SELF IS Realised. No identification (suffering) with personhood just SELF.
Blessings to you in and as Silence, Philip
Thank you Philip. That is really helpful. I think you have really understood where I was. Of course it’s what I needed to hear. You are the divine manifesting itself for me (the divine) to reveal itself again! Peace, love and light.
If you would like to explore further you can try the Live Stream: Dying before you die, the Live Stream Recording of ‘A letter from God’ or 30 minute Infinite Silence Experience Videos Below. These resources updated April 2023.