May 21, 2011 Saturday Afternoon, Venture Fourth

Aaron: You're each going to choose a partner. Let's start with that, find and sit facing a partner. Each of you has a paper cup. With your partner, sit with one facing the back of the other. Sitting not face to face but the back of one facing the other...

With this step, I want the person with their back turned toward the other to close their eyes. The partner behind them will not touch them. Spend a few minutes centering yourself and, as much as possible, opening into awareness. The partner behind them, keeping their hands to themselves...

I'm going to give the instruction but it may be 5 minutes before you begin to act on the instruction. When the person sitting in the front feels centered and aware, resting in awareness, simply raise your hand for a moment, and then lower it. Then sometime within the next minute or two, when your partner has raised his or her hand so you know he/she is ready, but not immediately after, begin to bring your hands up toward their back, not touching, until they feel your energy behind them and raise their hand again saying that they feel your energy. That's it. Then switch.

Here you are opening into the akashic field. It's a very simple experience of opening into the akashic field. Are there any questions?

Q: Is the akashic field any particular density?

Aaron: All densities. It exists at every density.

Okay, go ahead then. After you're finished working one way, turn around 180 degrees and work the other way. Don't try to feel the energy, simply relax into the presence of the energy. It's a relaxing and resting, and not a doing, so I want you in this way to get a sense of the presence of the akashic field...


Has everybody done this successfully? (Yes.) Now, may I have your attention again, please? Pass the cups, one per person... Please turn and face each other. (tape paused, exercise instructions are not recorded for the first pair, but are repeated below for the second pair.)

Q: One cup of water per person, and the active person in the couple has a half cup of water.

Aaron: A half a cup of water in the active person's cup. The receiving person's cup remains empty... Inner, outer, and field. When you have finished working in one direction, switch the active person and the recipient.

The recipient will need to hold an empty cup. The active person will hold a full cup...

(tape paused)

The new recipient, both people moving into the field. Recipient eyes closed. Feeling the inner invitation for water to moisturize the throat, the body. Finding that water within the akashic field. Also, perhaps, finding obstacles to asking for what is needed. Move through them as one swims through seaweed, just letting it go, seeing what's useful and what's not needed, until you are ready to raise your cup and invite water. Then carry it back to the body, and drink it with mindfulness and gratitude. Feel it entering the body. Feel yourself still in the akashic field, accept this water as gift of the universe.

Those who have done this once may want to try it again with the giver trying to feel when the recipient is ready to extend the cup and ask for water, before the recipient holds the cup out. If you're in the field with them, you feel that impulse coming toward you before that cup is fully extended...

(tape paused)

Now I would like to hear questions and your experience. Could you feel the field? What I'm trying to help you do here is help you understand the direct experience of the field. Just that. You still may not fully understand it; you may feel like you're just standing on the threshold. That's okay; just to get a sense of what it is.

Q: Can you talk about the relationship between nada and luminosity, those two in relationship to the akashic field?

Aaron: Resting in the akashic field, the lokuttara citta are open or you could not rest in the akashic field. You are resting in pure awareness, to some degree. When you rest in awareness, you are touching at least the edges of the Unconditioned and are able to experience the expressions of the Unconditioned. Nada is one direct expression of the Unconditioned; luminosity is another. There are others; these are two we often use. Just as when we practice the earlier work of simply resting in awareness, with pure awareness practice, and we use nada and luminosity as signposts that say, “Yes, I am experiencing pure awareness.”

So, in this situation, as you're resting in the akashic field, there's a likelihood that you'll experience either hearing nada or seeing luminosity. But if neither of them are present, don't worry about it.

Q: I guess my question is slightly different. Nada and luminosity are direct expressions of the Unconditioned; so is the akashic field. So are they different kind of equivalents or do nada and luminosity come out of the akashic field?

Aaron: They are all direct expressions of the Unconditioned, but subtly different. They come directly from the Unconditioned. Nada and luminosity are expressions. The akashic field is a medium, or container, through which the expressions present themselves. You can't go into the Unconditioned. Lokuttara citta can go directly into the Unconditioned and experience luminosity or nada, but it can't relate it to the everyday world. It can't ask for a glass of water from that space.

At the point where you can experience the direct expressions of nada, luminosity, scent, energy vibration, taste, one can experience any of these direct expressions, there is more of a certainty, “I am in the field that opens into the pure spring.” You don't do anything with these expressions, they're just there; they're signposts. It would be like seeking the sea; you have walked for many miles. Suddenly the air has a salt scent; the ground becomes more sandy; the sound of waves is heard though not yet seen. These are all signs that you are in a “field” of approach to the ocean.

Q: When you say that nada is a direct expression of the Unconditioned that we can hear, and luminosity is a direct expression of the Unconditioned that we can see, and there are direct expressions that we can taste and smell, and chi, which can be felt as body energy, how does the akashic field fit into that? Is it another one of those things, or is that something where nada and luminosity and chi and all those come out of?

Aaron: It is the bridge. In other words, we're taking the process deeper. When you rest in awareness, you experience nada and luminosity. And at that point, we don't talk about the akashic field, we're simply saying, here's a direct expression of the Unconditioned. There's got to be a process. We're explaining the process whereby the Unconditioned is here and everything expresses from the Unconditioned. This field is not separate from the Unconditioned, but the is right there with the Unconditioned, yet it is not the Unconditioned..

This is the level at which you can work with it and still connect with the relative plane. So it's expressing directly from the Unconditioned, but as we begin to know the experience of the akashic field, we see that we can sort out the immense multitude of conditions that come out of the Unconditioned, sort our way through them, and make skillful choice. We don't have to work with the Seven Branch Prayer unless we're stuck. That is a relative plane practice, a very helpful one, Instead, we see any resistance to choosing what is wholesome. We see ourselves swimming through the sea, and how we say, “Oh, let's look at that one, let's look at this one.” We reply to the self, “ No, I'm going there. My friend has said to come look at something with him or with her. I'm swimming to that object. I'm not going to get sidetracked into this or that, no matter how terrifying or lovely. I just swim my way through it.”

Nada and luminosity, at this point we're not paying too much attention to them except to note their presence. But we don't fixate on them or use them in any way. You may use nada or luminosity to help you into the akashic field, but then let go of it and simply be in the akashic field.

Q: Okay. So nada comes out of the akashic field? Like other conditioned expressions, it too comes out of the akashic field?

Aaron: Every possible expression is within the akashic field. Some are more mundane expressions, some are more supramundane expressions. Nada and luminosity are supramundane expressions. They are direct expressions of the Unconditioned.

Q: Does the akashic field require a separate citta, to perceive?

Aaron: The supramundane citta access the akashic field but the mundane citta are not separated. To move directly to the Unconditioned, the lokuttara citta are fully open. But we want a wider range. Let me put it this way.

Imagine yourself looking in a lake. You want to see the bottom. At first the water is stirred up and you can't see the bottom. Then the debris settles, the lake becomes still, the bottom comes into view. You can see the bottom, you can also see the fish swimming, and you can see the little bits of dust floating on that surface. It's all there simultaneously. This is the simultaneity of the citta. Lokuttara and kuttara are there simultaneously. Do you understand that? Does that make sense?

Q: So that means you can see the phenomenal world and the Unconditioned, a person who has both citta activated can perceive both the phenomenal world and the Unconditioned, at the same time?

Aaron: Exactly, though awareness is not as deep into the Unconditioned. You are not deeply lodged in the Unconditioned; you're moving between the two. This is a bit different than vipassana practice toward full awakening, full realization, where we move through the chain of knowledges into deep, profound experience of the Unconditioned. There will not be as deep an experience of the Unconditioned, but here there is the ability, like our little bear, to keep a toe in one, a finger in the other, to stay connected. You may be completely in the Unconditioned with one finger in the conditioned, so the kuttara citta are open to the degree that you can touch into the conditioned, which is what is needed for service in the world.

Let me give a simple example here. I believe Barbara spoke of the sit-in in which they emerged from the restaurant into the angry crowd. They could feel the anger. She was not thinking of it as akashic field then, she had no knowledge of that, but she was thinking of it as a field of consciousness, and within that field of consciousness she could feel all the possibilities, of healing, of murder, of rage and of love. And she was sorting through them and making a conscious choice: “I do not choose to be killed for myself and because it's bad karma someone to kill me. It's bad karma for them. I choose the wholesome, here. I open to the highest possibilities of healing in this moment for the self, the other, and the field.” Sorting through.

If at that moment she had been capable of moving into a deep experience of the Unconditioned, it would have been a profound awakening experience for her, but it would not have helped the situation. We're talking here about service andhow to bring whatever degree of realization you have out into the world.

Q: So how does accessing the Unconditioned help with service in the world?

Aaron: Direct access to the Unconditioned to the point that you have these deep realization experiences purify many of the negative tendencies. That helps with service in the world because the being who returns from that profound transformation brings far less negativity into the world and into his or her relationships in the world. He or she is able to speak and act with more clarity and less confusion.

Q: I thought you meant in the immediate sense, there can be service helping the world just by being in both places at once.

Aaron: That is so, but it's beyond that. In the exercise I asked you to observe any barricades to asking for the water, to inviting the water. In other words, to see any resistance, any fear, “I'm not worthy of it,” or, “I'll take too much water,” or whatever kinds of old patterns of resistance there might be. These are old habitual tendencies, old karmic tendencies. We can purify them in either of two ways. We can purify them through active work with them such as this with the akashic field where no matter how deep the pattern that somebody pushes me and I tense, they push me and I tense, ten thousand times, but suddenly right there in the akashic field I see the possibility of spaciousness. And I realize tension is not necessary. The whole pattern shifts.

The other way in which the karma shifts is through that deep experience of the Unconditioned. Then we bring that back into service in the world.

Q: I had another quick question. (pausing for a very loud boat...)

Aaron: Could we all go into the akashic field and find a place where the boat isn't? (laughter) Without destroying the boat.

Q: During that exercise, I am wondering if I experienced nada. I heard and felt a vibration come in on one side...

Aaron: Maybe it was the motorboat! (laughter) Just getting ready to start, not yet running.

Q: I felt it yesterday, too...

Aaron: It could have been nada. I don't know.

Q: It went through my brain to the other side.

Aaron: I think you were experiencing (your partner's) thought. The vibration. Not quite nada. That's what I think. Others? Please share your experience, not just questions.

Q: I don't know the difference experientially between pure awareness and the akashic field, and between tuning into the energy body and what we felt in that exercise, which you said was the akashic field.

Aaron: Awareness is citta. Akashic field is object. Every citta takes an object. When you rest in pure awareness, this is the opening of the supramundane citta. Then that citta can sink down into whatever object is there, held in the intention; in this case, the akashic field.

Q: I don't know what that is experientially.

Aaron: This is new. Give it time. When you drive your car you have a destination in mind, and you get on a road. The road is not the destination. The car is not the destination, but the vehicle takes you to the destination. When you get to the destination, you know it. But at first, when you get in your car, the road and the destination may seem to be merged together, as they are on one level. Then the road becomes the road and the destination the destination.

Q: I don't understand.

Aaron: When you think, “home,” do you see just your house or the road in front of your house? They are together, yet the road ends and the house is there.

(different) Q: If you watch it long enough, you should be able to distinguish it...

Aaron: Can some of you talk about the experiences you had of the akashic field so that others who are unsure may find some guidelines from your experience?

Q: I don't know if this is it, but I can tell you what I experienced. When I rested and felt thirst, and then looked for the essence of water, I sensed something and moved toward it. Then as I received the water and drank it, it felt like a completion of my initial movement, and there was a spontaneous appreciation and gratitude.

Aaron: Good. Clear. Those of you who are mothers and fathers, how many of you woke up in  the middle of the night just before the baby cried? A few of you know that experience. You woke up. “What woke me up?” One moment later the baby is crying, and you know the baby's cry didn't wake you up but a ripple in the akashic field. Others?

Q: My partner and I, on the first exercise, had a normal response. She gave me water when I wanted it. I gave her water when she wanted it. However, on the second exercise where we were supposed to anticipate each other wanting the water, she did not give me water. And then she asked me, “Did you reach for it?” and I said no, I had drunk 2 cups so I was not thirsty. There was nothing in me that was asking her for water.

Then when she was to be the recipient of the water, and I was waiting for the anticipation, what I heard was, “Water! Water! Water!” And I gave her water. She then told me that she was not about to ask for the water but she was thinking “Water, water, water,” or something like that?

Q: I was playing with the akashic expression of water.

Q: Yes. I felt the strong energy that she wanted water...

Aaron: So you were feeling it although it was in play. And sometimes it takes some practice with tuning, when there's a room of you, “Water! Water! Water!” could have come from the person over your right shoulder.

Q: So you're saying the experience of the akashic field is the knowingness that I felt before my partner reached for water?

Aaron: In part. When you have that knowingness, you are in the akashic field, but it is citta that knows. The akashic field has no knowingness to it; it is a place, an object. Citta accesses the akashic field. But citta that's not resting anyplace, but is scattered all over, cannot read the akashic field, so there's no knowing, there's just undefined consciousness. It doesn't have a specific experience within the akashic field.

Imagine what the world might look like to a newborn infant, colors and shapes that it cannot differentiate in any way. It can make no sense of it. The eyes make contact, there's seeing consciousness, but there's no sense at all of what the object is, just a vast array of movement, color, light and form. It just sees many different kinds of edges and colors and lights, undifferentiated. Perception develops gradually.

We learn how to enter into the akashic field with a sensitivity, willing to pre-select that which is wholesome and for the highest good, and to sort through and see the thousands of old karmic expressions, the conditions, that surround us, to sort through them and let them go, just as the baby within a week or two learns to focus in on the mother's face. It still doesn't know, “this is a face,” or “this is my mother,” but there's some recognition that this image means sustenance is coming.

Q: I am having challenges with the concepts around the akashic field. I think the thing that helps the most is, you mentioned in one of your talks that were transcribed, it's like a vestibule or a bridge between the manifest and unmanifest, between the conditioned and Unconditioned. But I had a very powerful experience of the akashic field in the energy. I could sense right away when my partner had raised his hands. I work a lot with energy, I'm a Reiki master, so that was an excellent exercise for me to have some sense of what the akashic field is about, through energy. So thank you for that.

Aaron: The image I find most helpful is that of the diver in the submarine, setting out with his scuba tanks and diving apparatus. But he can't just jump into the sea, he's got to go into a vestibule, which becomes flooded with water, and then he swims out through the door on the other side into the sea. In the same way, you cannot just bring the Unconditioned into the outer world, but must bring it through the bridge.

Now it's not a perfect metaphor because you can jump into the Unconditioned, but you can't take mundane consciousness with you. I don't know if that helps.

Q: Two questions. Are mundane and supramundane citta active in the akashic field?

Aaron: Yes. It's more supramundane, but you keep that fingerhold into the mundane.

Q: And is the akashic field 100% conditioned?

Aaron: No. The akashic field is a melding of the conditioned and Unconditioned. Another example that's sometimes helpful is that deep spring. Completely pure water, but because you can't pick the ladle up out of the mud and dip it in without dirtying the spring, it has a clear film over the top.

Then you need a small pipe of some sort, a one-way pipe, where nothing can go back into the spring, only water can emerge out of the spring. At that point, just beyond the film where the water starts to emerge from the spring, you can get the purest water that you can get from here in your relative plane existence. You know the spring is there, but remaining a relative plane human, you can't jump into the spring.

We don't move through the film, but we allow the spring to express itself from beyond the film into the akashic field. The trouble with this example is that we're talking about an ever-pure spring, and in the akashic field we have every kind of condition, wholesome and unwholesome, expressing. Intention sorts them out.

We're working to make available a book from work done long ago that was called Project Light. It was rather a series of trainings over 3 or 4 years, I believe. I was working alternate weeks with a group of healers, people who did Reiki, polarity therapy, and other kinds of healing arts, talking about body energy. We worked a lot with that deep spring and film. The transcripts were thousands of pages in chronological order and very inaccessible except to the most dedicated reader. Our transcriber, Janice, recently went through all of these thousands of pages of transcripts and sorted them out, not by chronological order but by topic, and then worked within each topic to choose the most important excerpts from transcripts. We're in the final stages of preparation of that material into a book. The material about the spring and the film over it will be very helpful.

Barbara, written during review: I will attach a few sections from Project Light.  2.8 & 6.4

Q: My experience of the akashic field, such as it has been, it seems like the process of accessing it is very similar to channeling my guide, but I'm not clear as to the relationship.

Aaron: Yes, I can see that. It's the same kind of consciousness that accesses your guides. The akashic field and your guides are not directly related, but the level of consciousness that can access your guides is the same level of consciousness that accesses the akashic field. Your guides are also found in the akashic field. That's a very helpful point.

Q: I had an experience that might be helpful, just in terms of trying to understand both the mundane and the akashic field. This is the water exercise, when I was to receive it. I did move into a space where I knew there was water, and I knew I wanted water. And then I recognized that maybe I could just get a little water quietly without bothering anybody (smiling). And then I looked again at the water, and all of a sudden it felt very available, generous, I had a sense of that, and that it was fine for me to get water from the field. And then I was willing to do that. And it seemed to me that in a way, at some level, something was looking at possibilities of how to approach this, satisfy my want. And I eventually came to choosing, I don't want to say the right one but certainly a more generous one. And I felt very grateful right then.

Aaron: This is a wonderful example of how we can work within the akashic field for the release of old karmic tendencies, when we see that “I shouldn't bother anybody.” At this point we invite the whole fullness, richness, of the universe, and there's abundant water. The whole idea, “I shouldn't bother,” that's just one of those pieces of seaweed we sort through. We release it. We don't need to go there.

Q: It wasn't a real conscious decision on my part to release it; this other way of seeing things just was there and took over.

Aaron: Exactly; because of your intentions. Good.

Q: In retrospect, I realize that I've been working with the akashic field for awhile now, and, it's not quite the right word to say that I used it to co-create, I co-created with it. Setting my intention, clarifying the intention, purifying the intention, and within that field, sort of releasing the intention. I don't know if I was imagining this or seeing this, but as if the molecules were coming together to co-create, were coalescing, were coming together to co-creating. In retrospect I understand now what I was doing, and the importance of having this very clear pure intention that included the well-being of all beings. So doing this for the benefit of all beings. And it just emerged out of it. Now I understand the akashic field.

Aaron: You're not imagining what you saw, it's clear.

Q: How can we tell experientially, or experience, whether we're in the akashic field or in an expression of the Unconditioned, like spaciousness, nada, luminosity?

Aaron: It doesn't really matter. If what's strong is nada, note the nada and then go past it. What else is there? Nada is just one expression of the akashic field. It's like saying, how can I tell if I'm in the fire element because I'm feeling so hot, or if I'm in the akashic field? The fire element is an expression of the akashic field. Use it as a pathway into the broader akashic field.


(Discussion ends)