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As we see in the news everyday, this is a world divided. What I mean by this is that it is polarized, and not just politically, but this world is dual by its very nature. It is a world of positive and negative. In fact, subatomically, the positive and negative forces within atoms give rise to all form in this world. And form includes not only the physical and the physical body, but the mental and the emotional bodies, as well.

So we have positive thoughts and negative ones; we have positive emotions and negative emotions. And very naturally we reach for the positive states while pushing away the negative. Why would we not?! Aah, but there is a profound spiritual truth that says:

Everything in time shall turn into its opposite.

In our limited ego-mind we teeter-totter between the positive and negative, spending some amount of time in one state before inevitably flipping to the other. With this constant flip-flopping, no wonder we often feel off balance and confused! We have no stable place to ground our awareness.

There is a way through, though. We each have access to a higher viewing platform, so to speak. This point of view rests outside of the dual nature of the mind and emotions. Called the neutral witness or the neutral observer, it is able to view the transitory nature of duality with detachment. Jesus said “If thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be filled with Light.” In other words, beyond the two eyes of negative and positive is this third channel of awareness – the single eye – our neutral observer. The positives and negatives of life will still happen, but the neutral observer rests outside of the action and just watches. This observer avoids assigning a value to one experience over the other, remains detached, and instead chooses neutrality. Then something amazing happens. Our inner world of swirling mind and emotions comes into balance and a doorway is opened into an expanded consciousness, one of peace, light and Presence. Instead of flip-flopping between the positive and negative, we begin to ground on that which rests between the opposites of the world – our true, divine nature.

“But how do I get there,” you ask? “How do I find my neutral observer?” The initial step is to make it conscious – to acknowledge its existence and to open to it. We already very naturally observe the personality in action with its judgments, likes and dislikes, but now we add the intention to be neutral in the face of the ups and downs of life, rather than react to them.

When I mentor others and they come me in pain or feel stuck in their lives some way, it is this witnessing presence that I hold for them. We could say that they have lost the neutral observer by identifying with the transitory thoughts or emotions that are passing through them. In our sessions together we process and find our way back to the neutrality of this witnessing presence, anxiety is relieved and new ways of coping and perceiving are instituted.

Over time we build the strength of the neutral observer, reactivity is lessened, and we begin to discover the treasure that is beyond even the positive – an equanimity with all of life and the pure joy of Being.

I received an email from someone who asked me: “How can I be focused on just giving love unconditionally without waiting for love in return when I have experienced so much abuse in my life?”

We arranged a Skype call, and here is what I shared:

Our natural state of being is this unconditional love, emanating from the heart chakra in the center of the chest in limitless, eternal radiance. When consciousness resides in the heart, love becomes our ground of being. Negative states may arise, but we do not identify with them and they pass right through. They do not touch this ground of being from which we view and experience the world. The fundamental fabric of life is this love, permeating all of existence. It’s all there is; all manifestation arises from this field of love – unconditional love. And we are that.

So what is preventing us from experiencing this love all the time? Why does it seem to come and go? A friend sent me a picture of her new grandson over Christmas, his big, beautiful eyes shining bright blue, and his smile – radiant, the light pouring from his skin. There is such a transmission of Grace from this picture that it seems to have found a permanent place where I first propped it up, against a small statue of Kwan Yin on the side table in my dining room. This is our natural state – open heart, light-filled, radiant. As the baby begins his unique experience of life, this natural open heart state begins to become veiled from his perception. Because in this world we believe we are separate from our Divine nature, the heart behaves like a valve, opening and closing according to the positive or negative stimulus it receives. What will happen is that the baby will begin to have experiences that feel like loss, veiling his perception and direct experience of the eternal light within.

Perhaps it begins one day when he cries out to get his mother’s attention – maybe he is hungry, or his diaper needs changing – and mom is distracted and doesn’t hear him right away. His cries become louder. Eventually mom responds, baby is fed, and all is well. But then, later on, a similar experience occurs, and then another one. Baby begins to have experiences that feel like abandonment. The possibility of abandonment becomes very real to him, and this possibility becomes imprinted in his consciousness. It becomes a vibratory field which lies dormant, mostly, until it is activated by thought, by the thought of the possibility of abandonment. Imagine how as the baby grows into childhood, a multitude of negative experiences, experiences that feel like loss, can become layered into his consciousness. These negative experiences, these dense vibratory fields, are the veils that mask our natural connection to Source, to the light within, to the love that is our essential nature.

Our journey home to Self, to this natural state of love, is a journey through the broken heart. We must heal these wounds from childhood, allowing the suppressed emotions associated with them to surface, to be witnessed and released. When our inner deprived child is healed of this emotional wounding layered in consciousness, then the heart can open fully and permanently, unaffected by any negative stimulus. And in this open heart love can pour forth unconditionally, wanting nothing more than to express its inherent effulgence.