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Manifest This!

shambhavi's hands
June 29 2005

If you think you are manifesting everything in your life, then manifest a solid gold egg right now!

How did you do?

Somewhere in the world are yogis who actually can make things appear and disappear, including themselves. It seems unlikely that one of the readers of Jaya Kula is such a yogi. But if I’m wrong, please write to me immediately and let me know! (Grin.)

This polemic has been inspired by a student who asked me yesterday, “Is it really true that our thoughts are not producing our whole lives?” Well, yes and no.

Tantric View leaves no aspect of reality out of the picture. To understand the question above, we must simultaneously think in both relative and absolute terms, or in dual and non-dual terms. We can’t escape our real situations by running off and hiding out in absolutist non-dual explanations.

Okay, okay, it’s true: This world is nothing but consciousness and creative power bound together like white on rice. The manifest world of you, me, car, enchilada, and poodle is both created by consciousness and energy and—this is very important—is also nothing but consciousness and energy. So the world is a projection out of Siva that always remains within and of Siva. All is consciousness (Siva) and creative power (Shakti).

Sadly, this conceptual knowledge will not help you to get rich quick. An adept works directly with the natural capacity of essence to appear with form and then dissolve again into the ocean of formlessness. This pulse between appearing and resolving back to formlessness is the entirety of the life process. However, no substances actually appear and disappear. Everything remains just as it is, was, and always will be: Consciousnessness and energy. Only the mode of appearing changes. An adept is experientially participating in the foundational processes of creation.

Doesn’t the ability to consciously participate in the cosmic creative process seem an eensy-weensy bit different than the claim that your thoughts are creating your whole life? Well, the really horrifying thing is that your thoughts are co-creators of your life, but mostly unconscious and compulsive co-creators. Only one who is largely free from karma, or habitual patterning, can play at will with processes of manifestation and dissolution.

Of course, our humble habitual thoughts are also only Siva. The catch is that most of our thinking is Siva expressing in a state of avidya or ignorance. That is, Siva appearing in a self-forgetful mode. This self-forgetfulness is part of the cosmic game of peek-a-boo, and self-realization is the “I see you” part.

When you enter onto a spiritual path, you start participating consciously in this game. This is good, but it is usually a heck of a long time before you wake up enough to manifest anything so grand as your whole life.

Sometimes spiritual seekers who have met a teacher make claims such as “I manifested my Guru.” This is, frankly, absurd. Perhaps your emerging capacity for spiritual work became evident to a teacher so he or she showed up. Perhaps an entire cosmic situation at work long before your birth was tending toward that meeting. But if you, on your own, were capable of manifesting a teacher, then you likely don’t need one!

Your best companions on the spiritual path are sincerity, humility, and a high tolerance for the unknowable. Even for the adept, the world is only somewhat more useable, somewhat more consciously perceived. You will never be able to control the whole thing. Which is great, because now you can relax all that effort.


OM Shanti, Shambhavi