THE POWERLESSNESS OF THINGS

from a lecture by William Samuel

 

 

Whenever we are about the business of determining what things are, why images of perception appear as they do; or trying to find answers to our questions, there is just one place to start, and that is with Awareness. We begin with this Awareness that is reading these words, that looks out the window at pine trees swaying in the wind, that sees the slanting rain blow across the dark green of the trees.

 

We begin with this awareness because Awareness, Life, is the only place we can begin. If we begin with the thing itself; the tree, the business, or the "claim," we are beginning with an image within Awareness, and we will never find the answer there.

 

If we begin with the image itself, we can go no higher than the perception of images. If, for example, we begin with a mistake on an arithmetic paper, and we are confused and confounded by the mistake, we will never get at the answer by lingering there; will we? Can we ever? No, we gird up our loins and look away from the mistake long enough to go back to the principle of arithmetic, wherein there is not the least possibility of any mis­take. There, carefully observing the principle, we soon find out what caused the mistake, and what to do about it.

 

No, we do not begin with the problem. We do not begin with the image within aware­ness. Even though that very often triggers the determination to go and find the answer, we must nonetheless turn away from the image, from the thing, to come back to the principle which is being the thing. We come home to the starting point, and the starting point, without doubt, is always this awarenesss, this consciousness that is conscious right here, right now. We come home to this life to find that Life Itself is our identity. And as we come home to Life Itself, That which is being Life discloses Itself. That which is being this Awareness discloses itself. That which is being the wind, the bending trees and falling pine-cones; that which is being this monumental motion discloses Itself, and we find ourself coming up with the answers.

 

Let us talk about things for a moment. When we look at a thing, what do we see? Let us use an illustration. Suppose right here, right now, we have a lump of gold. What do you see? You see form. But is there any gold itself in form? No, you can say that gold itself is being all there is to form, but there is no gold itself in what we call form. If you touch it you feel something that is solid. You can say that you see and feel solidness. Is there any gold itself in solidness? We can put the lump of gold on a scale and see a measurable amount of weight. But is there any gold itself, any of the essence itself in weight? No. Be-cause it is a lump of gold, we see yellow; don't we? But is there any gold itself in what we call yellow? No. But gold, the essence, is being all there is to what we call yellow. Yel­low lives and moves and has its being because gold is. And instead of there being any gold in yellow, yellow is in gold. We might use Biblical language here, and say that yellow lives and moves and has its being because gold is. You see, yellow will exist just as long as gold is. And it is as perfect, in every way, as gold is in being gold. Gold might very well say, if it could speak, "Yellow is my color in which I am well pleased." And speaking as yellow, gold might say, "I, yellow, and my basis in being gold, are one; yet gold is greater than I." Gold is the substance and the being of all of the qualities and attributes of gold. Gold doeth the work, gold is the value.

 

All that we can see with the eye, hear with the ear, touch with the hand, or taste with the tongue are just qualities and attri­butes, and all of them together are not what gold is. They are what gold is being, but they are not gold itself.

 

Do you see this? Once again now, look at anything--over there is my old beat-up type-writer. We see form, we see color, we see shape; and yet there is no Isness Itself in form, color or shape. All that is seen with the eye is a grouping of qualities and attributes that we call, "typewriter."

 

Every object that is seen with the eye or heard with the ear, everything that is included within what we call awareness, is always only a grouping of qualities and attributes. There is no power in them. The power is inevitably in That which is being the image.

 

I tell you that there is no value, there is no power, there is no importance in any object that is perceived within awareness. There is no need to fear or be concerned about anything that you see with your eye or hear with your ear. I'm quite aware that humanity is very reluctant to acknowledge this fact, because it is contrary to all that humanity believes is real, and all that human­ity thinks is important.

 

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This is the way it is that Awareness, this very conscious Awareness that right now listens to the thunder, that sees trees and leaves and little boys with dirty knees, never sees primordial Isness, but sees the qualities and attributes thereof. One never sees the principle of arithmetic. Rather, one sees the signs and symbols that are the principle of arithmetic made manifest, but not that principle, itself. There is no audible sound in the principle of music, and yet we hear its melody through the application of its laws. The melody is not the principle itself, yet the melody exists because there is a principle of music. Principle is first, is all; it is one, alone, single, pure.

 

Obviously, so long as world science is con­cerned with the tangible thing, it is not con­cerned with Being, Itself. And so long as we are concerned with the thing, with the wife, the daughter. the grandson, the storm, the threatened business, the bank account—so long as that is our primary concern, then we are not being concerned with Being Itself, but only with the measurable qualities and attri­butes of Being. But Being, God, Isness, is the Reality, the Fact. It is The Alone One besides which there is none other, outside of which nothing exists, and because of which all its qualities and attributes have their being.

 

It is really very simple.

 

Let us use another illustration. Suppose an actor playing the part of Macbeth comes to believe that role to be his own actual identity. On the stage as Macbeth, he could no more understand the powerlessness of things than he could rise and fly, and to rise and fly was not written in the script, so he could not. There would be no way to tell Macbeth there is no value in the sword, in the castle or in the soldiers. There is no logic, no reason, that will ever heal Macbeth's troubles. All things, be they objects of sight, sound, touch or smell; he they thoughts, ideas. in-tuitions, or dreams, are within--within thts awareness that is aware right here, right now. The value and importance are not out there with the thing, but right here where Aware­ness Itself is being aware.

 

The value and the importance and the power are That, the Deific Isness. the God-head, which is being Awareness.

 

Let us say it again. Whenever we are about the business of determining what anything is, we begin with the only place we can begin, right here with Awareness. We come to per­ceive that Awareness Itself is who and what we are and that we are not the custodian of Awareness. That is, we are not a container that includes Awareness within itself. We are not the one who is a manipulator of Aware­ness. We are not the one who says, "This Awareness is mine." Rather, we are Aware­ness Itself. Right here, right now, this con­sciousness, this awareness that is aware, that reads these words, is the Identity we are. The body, the trees, the wind, the leaves, the wife, the children are images within Awareness; qualities and attributes of Isness, just being qualities and attributes of Isness.

 

The one who identifies himself as an ego containing life, the one who believes that he is the grand custodian of life, the one to whom God has given life; that one is the great walking, talking, miserable "Macbeth." That one will never be convinced of the truth of what we are saying here, because that one reasons from things back to himself. He looks out at an external universe that he holds to be "out there," separate and apart from himself. He sees himself in one place and he sees things in another. He sees multiplicity and duality.

 

The one who is the custodian of Aware­ness will never understand what we are saying here; but the heart, that which is open, listen­ing, feeling, recognizes the truth.

 

We must determine whether we choose to be life, or whether we simply want to use it. That is, do we want to just be this Awareness which is God's Awareness of being, already viewing perfection; or do we want to live on and on as an ego, as an identity who simply wants this awareness to show him a house full of happiness and a bank full of dollars? The temptation, for all of us, is to use Awareness. As we become aware of the all-inclusiveness of Awareness, we still want to maintain our-selves as the great possessor of It, the grand custodian of It. Yet, it would seem that we must use the words of the custodian's vocabulary. That is, we must use Macbeth's words, a Macbeth who wants to use Aware­ness to suit his own aims. Macbeth wants very much to have all of his trials and tribulations ended. He wants Lady Macbeth to stop worrying about the blood on her hands. Macbeth wants his calculations to go accord­ing to plan. He wants to know some great truth that will correct all of his trials and tribulations, but he wants to remain Macbeth. He wants to just be a very happy Macbeth, a happy container of awareness. He wants this container to have no problems. He wants only the happy things of a grand personal experi­ence maintained; or of an unhappy personal experience changed, healed, rectified, or over-come. He wants to continue as a happy, healthy, prosperous, acclaimed Macbeth. He is not willing to let go Macbeth, to just be Life, Itself.

 

The surrender that the Bible and all of the religions of the world speak of, the ego that we are to let go of, is just this one that says, "Life is mine, I am the receiver of life; my awareness, my life, my consciousness, my affairs, my experience." This doesn't mean that we never say "my." We are not going to fight that battle—trying to exclude certain words that appear to imply certain things in our experience. We simply understand that Awareness, right here, right now, is the Identity we are; that never, never, have we been a custodian of It. Never, never have we been the recipient of It. We have played the role of the recipient of Awareness. We have played the role of the custodian of It, the director of It, the would-be slave-master of It; but that one was the "old man" the Bible speaks of; "Put off the old man.”

 

Can you see that all of the problems of Macbeth are entirely the result of his two identities, the real Identity, which is Aware­ness Itself, and the belief that he is a Macbeth who is the container of life? You see he cannot be both. He cannot hang on to just the "good" aspects of Macbeth's life and carry those with him into the proper Identity. We cannot take all of the aspects of human erudi­tion that we love, and all of the "good" that we have come to perceive as human good, into the recognition of Identity as Identity is. Identity as Identity is requires the sacrifice of the old man entire. We must let go the old man; but the intellect will never let us do this. Macbeth, himself, will never let us do it, because the minute we consider the possi­bility, the great intellect tells us. "Well, my goodness, this will be the end of me, I'll lose my identity, I'll be nothing." This is certainly true, because the old man and all of his pro­blems will be gone. That one will have been relegated to the position that it rightfully holds just a part in a play.

 

Ah, but you see Awareness goes right on. It is the same Awareness. It still sees the same sights, still sees the same trees and bees and pretty girls' knees. It still sees the beauty that Isness is, because this Awareness, right here, right now, is the perception of God. It is God's Awareness being aware. It is God's Life, living. Oh, indeed, Awareness will be here yet! We let go the container that worries about the things that he sees. We let that one go, and find that Awareness is here yet, unconfined, beholding things as they are. Awareness Itself will still be the Identity I am, unencumbered now, free now, and not limited to the dark-glass purview of an ailing ass by the name of Macbeth.

 

What harm can come to us as the result of things? Consider our lump of gold illustration again. What can yellow do to harm Isness, Itself? What can form do to hurt Isness, or Reality? No matter what we are faced with or how threatening it is, the Light that illumina­tion is ultimately allows us to see that things, the images of perception, cannot do us in. I tell you that should the roof fall in, should there appear to be the disintegration of a world in some sort of cosmic bath of radia­tion, Awareness would go right on being aware. Awareness is not confined nor bound by any laws. It is not bound nor confined by the body that it appears to see out from. Awareness is God's Self-Perception. Before anything can happen to this Awareness, some-thing would have to happen to God.

 

We stop seeing ourselves as a great per­sonal ego containing life within himself, to see that this life, right here, that we are, is Deity's life. And, what is life for, but to perceive and see? It is Deity's perceiving, Deity's seeing. Seeing what? What can Deity, being All, see but Itself? It sees Its own infinite qualities and attributes. The trees we see there, the mountain in the distance, are but qualities and attributes containing no power nor importance, of themselves, any more than numerals contain power and importance in themselves. The numerals show forth the prin­ciple. So it is that all of the things that we see are qualities and attributes showing forth Isness. Isness is the value, the power and im­portance. I can tell you, because I know, that Isness transcends the finite tangible appearing of the thing itself, just as surely as the tele­vision picture tube transcends the measurable images that move about on its screen. Yet, the screen is being all there is to all of the images that appear there. But there is something that is vast and over-riding; it is that which we call the television set, which, in the process of functioning, is being all there is to all that the tube is and all that the images are.

 

We have the television set functioning as images; by the same token, we have Isness perceiving Itself. The perceiving is this very Life, this very Awareness we are. And the Itself is the qualities and attributes that Isness

knows Isness to be. Consider this. Run with this. Look on the images that you see as the qualities, characteristics, attributes of the very self you are. See yourself as the Seeing of God!

 

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A FINAL WORD:

 

There is a saying in the East that nothing has been read once until it has been read twelve times. May I suggest that you begin to reread this booklet at once. Do not put it aside until you have captured its message. There is a simple and gentle Light within these pages that will change your life and make all things new. It can! But it is a mes­sage only the Heart can find. Search with the Heart and you will find it.

 

Other Works By

 

A Guide to Awareness & Tranquility
The Awareness of Self-Discovery
The Child Within Us Lives!
The Melody of the Woodcutter and the King
2+2= Reality
The Child Within Journal Notes

Copyright 1970
All Right Reserved Rachel Samuel
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William Samuel