Monthly Archives: February 2010

Nondual Verses

Verses from the free online book, The Wild Song of Standing Free.

8. I AM I AM AND I AM I AM. It is the one occurrence.

9. There are no ports and there is no sea. There are no implements of enlightenment and no stages of enlightenment, and there is no enlightenment. How can this be said? It is said.

10. Umba is neither the man nor the mantra. Umba is the atmosphere pervading Umba; the atmosphere in which there is Standing Free and which is not separate from Standing Free.

11. How can there be I AM? How can there be failure to grasp “I AM”? How can there be the world, this world, world or worlds on end?

12. The Absolute is that atmosphere, pure, unknowing and all-knowing, without a division.

13. Not air, not water, not fire, not earth, no thing contains consciousness. There is no location of consciousness.

14. Consciousness pervades consciousness.

15. There is no mind. How can there be concentration? The mind has fallen through the mind. Attention has been consumed by attention.

16. I am the Absolute, consumed in I Am. Not by analysis, not by transcendence, not by mutability does matter yield to the Absolute; there is no analysis, no transcendence, no mutability; no mind; there is nothing done, nor is there refraining from doing; there is no interaction between the mind and matter; there is neither mind nor matter. There is Grace. The Absolute. Truth. No division. I am The One Standing Free.

The Nonduality Movement: Part 1

The Nonduality Movement

The earliest use of the phrase “nonduality movement” was, to my knowledge, October 25, 1999, on the Nonduality Salon email forum, by myself.

The context was one of humor since, while it was clear there was both the energy present for a movement and the actual expansion of online communities, it was not yet clear that there was indeed such a movement as a social/spiritual/cultural phenomenon.

To play down the boldness of such a claim as a nonduality movement, and to thereby reduce the possibility for a ground of cultishness, I couched my announcement in humor. Also, that’s just my personality, to sometimes use humor when I’m not sure how else to approach an issue or topic:

“I think it would be cool if the Nonduality movement made it into the list of cults to watch out for. Any way we can push for that?”

This comment reveals three things: One, that a nonduality movement was perceived. Two, that I wanted to point it out. And, three, that I wanted to acknowledge its potential degeneration, but not in a serious way, lest seriousness feed the possibility of such degeneration.

Though I was preparing for the breaking down of the movement into cultishness, eleven long Internet years later it has not happened. In fact, the movement has no center, so cultishness of the movement as a whole doesn’t seem possible.

The movement has kept itself honest by inviting all voices and by encouraging the formation of new communities and welcoming the strongest criticism.

My way of encouraging the movement was by encouraging people to form their own email communities and to “steal” members from my email community, Nonduality Salon. That makes no sense in any world of business, but if you want to start a movement you have to give up your own position, the fruits of your work, and your own life.

Now, you don’t give anything up for a higher cause. You don’t give up anything for any reason at all. You let happen what needs to happen and later on you, or others, might look at what happened and describe it as having given something up for some purpose or some good.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines a “movement” as “A course or series of actions and endeavours on the part of a group of people working towards a shared goal.” I’ll talk about that definition in the next part of this series and give my modified definition as, clearly, I don’t think a movement has to be as intentional and organized as the OED implies.

A Tip for Publishing Your Nonduality Book

A prospective publisher or literary agent will usually ask whether your book is original. Here’s a way to approach that question:

To a vast audience, yes, your book is probably original. To a specific nonduality audience it’s probably less original.

The audience for nonduality books is layered like an onion. There is the “very hard core nonduality” layer , the “hard core,” the medium core, the soft core layer, etc.

I’m not going to give examples of each layer, but if you’re writing a book on nonduality I’m sure you have your own impressions. You can define each layer by the kinds of books, media, personalities, and lifestyles with which it is identified.

Your book will sell throughout all those layers, but the huge audience is outside the onion altogether, drawing its fumes.

Envision your audience and determine the degree of originality of your book for each layer and within the atmosphere of the fumes. (I hope you don’t hate onions.) Then communicate to the publisher a picture of the originality of your book. Show where and how your book fills a niche.

As part of a marketing plan, also show how you will enter each layer and hustle your book.

-Jerry Katz

Nonduality, by Colin Drake


by Colin Drake

Nonduality – not ‘the quality or opposition of being dual (two).’
— not ‘the opposition between two concepts or aspects.’ (Oxford English Dictionary)

Or to put it simply ‘not two’ (of anything). It is put this way, rather than saying ‘all is one’, for the very term ‘one’ implies (that there could be) two or more… In fact the term ‘nonmultiplicity’ would be more accurate for what is being suggested here is ‘not many’ rather than ‘not two’.

What we are trying to get a handle on here is that there is actually no (permanently existing) thing in existence, and that all apparent ‘things’ are manifestations of the same essence.

This can be shown by investigating the nature of our own subjective experiences, which is actually all that any of us have to investigate. For each of us any external object or thing is experienced as a combination of thought (including mental images) and sensation, i.e. you may see it, touch it, know what it is called, and so on … Thus everything in the external world is experienced as a mixture of thoughts and sensations, and when we attempt to investigate any ‘thing’ it is these that we are investigating.

In any given moment of direct experience there are only three elements: thoughts (including all mental images), sensations (everything detected by the senses) and awareness of these thoughts and sensations. All thoughts and sensations are ephemeral objects (the perceived) which appear in this awareness (the perceiver) which is the constant subject. So at a deeper level than the ever-changing objects (thoughts and sensations) we are this constant subject, awareness itself.

To put this in a slightly different way, we can easily notice that every thought and sensation occurs in awareness, exists in awareness and dissolves back into awareness. Before any particular thought or sensation there is effortless awareness of ‘what is’: the sum of all thoughts and sensations occurring at any given instant. During the thought or sensation in question there is effortless awareness of it within ‘what is’. Then when it has gone there is still effortless awareness of ‘what is’.

Reiterating, for each of us any external object (or thing) is experienced as a combination of thought and sensation, i.e. you see it, touch (feel) it, know what it is called, etc. Therefore in our direct experience everything arises in, exists in and subsides back into awareness itself.

Awareness can also be defined as universal consciousness when it is totally at rest, completely still; aware of every movement that is occurring within it. In our direct experience we can see that awareness is still, as there is awareness of the slightest movement of mind or body. In fact this is the ‘stillness’ relative to which any movement can be known. Every ‘thing’ that is occurring in consciousness is a manifestation of cosmic energy, for the string theory and the earlier theory of relativity show that matter is in fact energy, which is consciousness in motion (or motion in consciousness). For energy is synonymous with motion and consciousness is the substratum, or deepest level, of all existence.

Now all motion arises in stillness, exists in stillness, is known by its comparison with stillness, and eventually subsides back into stillness. For example, if you walk across a room, before you start there is stillness, as you walk the room is still and you know you are moving relative to this stillness, and when you stop once again there is stillness. In the same way every ‘thing’ (consciousness in motion) arises in awareness (consciousness at rest), exists in awareness, is known in awareness and subsides back into awareness. Awareness is still, but is the container of all potential energy which is continually bubbling up into manifestation (physical energy) and then subsiding back into stillness.

Thus there is no dichotomy or duality between the physical world and ‘awareness’ for they are both manifestations of the same essence. The physical universe is just cosmic energy (consciousness in motion) when it is manifest into physical form, and awareness (consciousness at rest) contains this same energy in latent form as potential energy. Therefore there is in reality no multiplicity (nonduality) as there is only consciousness existing in two modes, in motion and at rest.

~ ~ ~

Colin Drake is the author of

Beyond the ‘Separate Self’
The End of Anxiety and Mental Suffering

A Simple Guide to Awakening

Based on the Meditations, Contemplations, and Experiences
of Forty Years of Spiritual Search and Practice

Learn more and order here.

Free online book: The Wild Song of Standing Free

The Wild Song of Standing Free, a book I wrote in a couple of weeks in 1997 as preparation for beginning my online work in nonduality, is available at no charge at

The book consists of short poetical verses inspired by the Avadhuta Gita:

“The title of this book is consumed. The beginning of this book is consumed. The middle of this book is consumed. The end of this book is consumed. This entire book is non-existent. To say the book is non-existent is to say it is existent. The sea of existence and non-existence is parted. All is essenced by the interval. There I know the One Day. There I Stand Free. The author is essenced.”

“Clearly I have not a body; nor have I knowledge of the Absolute. I am the Absolute. Do not think that I am in any way separate from any entity or that there are any entities at all.”

“I do not subscribe to anything; there is nothing to subscribe to. There is nothing manifest. There is nothing deep or wonderful. No out-of-sling purpose to anything. No secrets. No sevens.”

“The Truth is not a man or woman; it is not an idea or an intuition; it is not joyful or sorrowful; it is not bliss, being or consciousness. It is: I am the One Standing Free.”