RUPERT SPIRA: SILENCE, KNOWING, BREATH
Below is the opening section of a Direct Path meditation offered by Rupert Spira. I do not add any comments of my own, but I include a link to Rupert Spira’s website for anyone interested in looking further.
“Allow the silence to come to your attention. Although the silence is empty, see that it is appearing in Awareness, appearing in pure knowing. It is saturated with knowing.
“Feel that the silence is pervaded by and saturated with pure knowing, and that pure knowing is pervaded with silence. The silence is only the knowing of it. There is no silence apart from knowing. This knowing is silent, empty, transparent.
“Everything that appears is like a ripple in this knowing silence, or silent knowing.
“Allow the breath to come to your attention. Feel that the breath is like an undulation of this silence. Lengthen and deepen the breath as if you were an infant breathing in deep sleep. Feel that the breath is like an undulation of this ocean of silence.
“Abandon the belief and feeling that the breath takes place inside a solid, dense, located body. There is no such experience of a body. There is a vast, borderless ocean of silence pervaded by knowing, and the breath completely fills this empty, silent, knowing space.
“The sensation that thought used to label ‘my body’ is a ripple quivering in the midst of this ocean of breath. The breath is expanded into this empty, silent, knowing, completely pervaded by it. The sensation called ‘my body’ is a quivering ripple vibrating at the centre of this borderless, empty space.
“Feel that the breath is not taking place inside a container. The breath is like a mist, completely filling the space in which it appears. It doesn’t appear in a physical space; it appears in an empty, knowing silence.
“Visualize a landscape in which the space, the air and the mist are one. Now go back to your experience and feel that the silence, the knowing and the breath are one. In this metaphor, the space is pure knowing, the air is silence and the mist is the breath.
“Pure knowing is unknowable as an object, completely transparent. Silence, the absence of sound, is the subtlest of all objects. And the breath is a very fine vibration, the first form of silence, like the mist, barely an object, but just discernable. Feel that these three – pure knowing, the silence, and the breath – are dissolved into one another.”
Rupert Spira Transparent Body, Luminous World: The Tantric Yoga of Sensation and Perception Oxford: Sahaja Publications, 2016
See also: www.rupertspira.com/
Very interesting but not something I can relate to at all where I’m at in my own practice… abandoning belief in one’s body and entering a state of pure knowing is utterly different to what I’ve been doing – trying to become more aware of the biological makeup of my lungs and the science of respiration from an animistic standpoint wherein the surroundings are filled with lots of elemental persons, oxygen, carbon dioxide etc, teeming with life, interacting by exchanging electrons.
I wouldn’t do the Spira stuff by itself. When I first looked at his work, it seemed insane and life-denying. But doing the work, in modest doses and suspending disbelief, does (for me) seem to create an energetic ease and a transparency which I find valuable. For me, what you are doing is also entirely valid. The only teacher I know of who champions both your kind of work and Spira’s is Douglas Harding in ‘The Hierarchy of Heaven’.