Guest Post by Chantal Monte: Infinitely Awake and Already Free
As summer winds down, and my kids head back to school (which means more posts here, as well as some new teleseminar offerings to be announced next week) I am so happy to share a guest post from Chantal Monte, whom I interviewed here back in January. In this beautiful offering, she invites us into our simplicity and silence, where we are ‘infinitely awake and already free':
If you’re like me and have tried everything else, try sitting in the silence and see what you find in this spaciousness within you…
A teacher once told me, “Stop! Stop everything! Drop all your spiritual knowledge. Stop seeking, acquiring, and attaining. Let go of all your tools, books, teachings, and see what is right here…always here.”
In our busy, fast-paced lives, “stopping” seems almost unheard of. When do we have time to stop – to simply stop and see what is right here? But in so many ways our lives are being lived just on the surface of our profound nature; not in a superficial way but compared to what’s possible, to what we long for, to our biggest desires. And this stopping is not necessarily about discovering enlightenment or self-actualization. What it is about is allowing the extraordinary force that created our whole world into being to be expressed through you, unencumbered and without any effort.
Our natural state is one of ease, love, joy, radiance, peace, and timeless awareness. This is the place where we are infinitely awake and already free. There is nothing to fix or improve about ourselves. I am speaking about an aliveness that is in you, in everyone, and already consciously awake.
We put so much value and attention on our thoughts and mind; on acquiring knowledge, believing our beliefs, learning new information, and identifying closely with our ideas about what life is or what we want it to be. We seem to believe that if we learn one more thing or try something new and different, we will be better, smarter, happier, more abundant, and ultimately free. It’s always one more thing until we get “there,” wherever we imagine “there” is.
How many times have we tried this? And yet thoughts are invisible. Not until we pull one thought down and manifest it into form does it have a life of its own.
Thoughts arise. Some get our attention, and many more dissipate before we know it (we have over 60,000 per day!). With some of these thoughts in our favor and others going completely against us, we will create our reality based on this duality.
Sometimes thoughts even seem to have a mind of their own!
The mind is either moving toward, away, or against something or someone. It is always in motion. And this ceaseless motion is where we become distracted by thoughts – pushed, pulled, and swayed.
Have we ever really stopped, looked, and asked ourselves, “Where do our thoughts arise from?”
A Direct Experience:
Generally, we first learn information with the mind to gain an understanding, then we might have an opportunity to practice the new information in our lives, where it travels into our bodies. We get to fully feel the experience. This is where understanding takes place on a cellular level, and this new information or energy continues to grow and become whole as it moves into the emotional and spiritual bodies. The mind becomes the gateway or access point guiding us into the next, important phase – where we leave thought “at the door” as we merge into a fully awakened, present state of awareness.
Please do not confuse having knowledge or information with raising levels of consciousness. Learning new information may help us to understand or assimilate information, but expanded awareness is always a matter of our direct experience. Direct experience is when we have a full-body knowing on multiple levels, not simply an understanding with the mind.
The following awareness practice can be used as a simple tool for inviting direct experience.
A Practice of Self-Inquiry
Sit for just a moment, right now, and notice: Where do your thoughts arise from? Simply tune in and see. What point of view are you taking? What are you focusing on right now?
And now, in this moment. Where is your awareness?
Wherever your consciousness is…there you are!
In YOUR experience, how does a thought move into and through your life? What actions does it give rise to?
Notice how your conscious awareness is untouched by any movement of thought or action. There is a deep and profound stillness in which everything arises – all thoughts, all ideas, all creations. In this silence, our deeper self naturally emerges and reveals itself.
This alive awareness or consciousness is in everyone, fully present.
Simply stop and see what is right here. Always here.
Raised by my beloved Indonesian grandmother in the San Francisco Bay Area, my training in the healing arts began in early childhood. Growing up in an Eastern household while living in the West showed me how to blend the two worlds—one world offering a rich internal reflection of life, and the other world offering a rewarding external expression of living. I have always desired deeper wisdom and continue to ask big questions and seek even bigger answers. For almost 20 years, I have studied and practiced with teachers and healers throughout the United States and Bali, Indonesia. I offer intuitive sessions in person or by phone and would love to share this work with you through a special 2-for-1 offer. Please learn more at www.ChantalMonte.com.