by Darryl Bailey

People often have the impression that a non-dual teaching is telling them to stop participating in life.

They hear someone describe the fact that if you rest, and make no attempt to do anything, you may discover that everything is happening spontaneously. From this, they get the impression it’s saying you should always attempt to do nothing.

Actually, it’s just the opposite. The act of resting may reveal that everything, including you, is the automatic functioning of something you’re not creating. To realize this does not leave us with any option of dropping out; it reveals that everything we are is compelled.

It’s not possible to stop participating in life because everything we are is the expression of life. We don’t exist as anything standing outside of existence. Our desires are the expression of nature. As Schopenhauer so succinctly put it, long ago, “You can do what you want, but you can’t create your wants.”

Right now, if you love art and are not fond of science, you can’t snap your fingers and have the opposite be true. You don’t create your needs, interests, or concerns and they are the foundation of your participation.

Your wants aren’t your wants at all; they’re nature’s urge to express itself in constantly unique ways. No two apparent expressions of existence are ever identical. Ultimately a non-dual teaching can’t recommend any particular way of behaving, because it’s the realization that each of us is unique.

It’s not offering the possibility of choosing to participate in life. It’s pointing out the fact that there is only the flow of life. And your expression will be a surprise.

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