Imagine three objects being juggled in the air. Now imagine only those three objects exist. There is no juggler. There is no ground below the objects. Only those three objects dancing around one and other at various rates, rhythms, and sequences. Where is the bottom line, the stable ground, in that world? There is no bottom line, no stable ground.
Imagine our universe. Planets and galaxies dance around one and other. Where is the bottom line, the stable ground? There is none. In every conversation, in every interaction, in every activity we look for a bottom line, an anchor to cling to. But there is none.
Existence is like the center of the deep end of a swimming pool. No concrete side to cling to. No stable ground below. Nothing to cling to. Instead of learning to swim, we cling to an inner tube or a rubber duck. That rubber duck becomes our ‘Truth’, our stable ground. The rubber duck becomes our reference frame we build our world around. We think in terms of ‘reference frame’. We demand a bottom line. We think in terms of ‘bottom line’. That is what the word ‘relative’ is all about.
Existence is composed of the relative and the absolute. The Absolute is not graspable, has no edge, no handle, no materiality. But the mind, longing for a bottom line, projects the notion of bottom line, stable ground, upon the absolute. The point is that we are indoctrinated into thinking in terms that are actually not consistent with the way the universe works.
What is the solution? Is there a way out of the illusion? Learn to swim. Learn to float. Learn to rest into the unbounded nature of your being, of your existence in the bottomless ocean. The very idea of no bottom line terrifies many. It brings up notions of a bottomless abyss.
The Absolute is not a ground floor. It is more like a cosmic cushion. A cloud that holds you. Like the deep end of a swimming pool, the water holds you if you learn to not fight it. It frees you from the need to cling to the rubber duck of your notions of truth.
Spirituality is generally taught as an offering of a bottom line, stable ground. The problem is: That is not how life works. We take concepts and look for the bottom line they offer. My teachings do not offer a bottom line. They are designed to free people from the notion of a bottom line. They are designed to help people learn to swim in the unbounded ocean of existence. That is called freedom… spiritual liberation.
The study of the structure of the Veda is the study of the nature of life. Though it is natural to try to project a bottom line on the dynamic of creation, its true nature, so beautifully displayed in the structure of the Veda, is that there is no bottom line. Brahman is not a bottom line. Brahmin is an unbounded ocean of consciousness in motion. It is all done with mirrors. Learn to swim and become free.
Fabulous blog! As you speak about no bottom line, it is easy to feel no bottom line. Seeing where I create a bottom line shows me where I create illusion. This is a great one for making our conditioning more transparent.
As I was reading this blog I got a sense of grasping for something that wasn’t there. Like arguing a point, but the point disappears. Your blogs always give me a sigh of relief.
“A cosmic cushion, a cloud that holds you’. Such a beautiful image. I feel a deep sense of peace reading this blog. You have taught me to pay attention to the parts of me that struggle to cling to those duckies and the more I let myself be cradled in the cosmic flow the more at peace I feel. Thank you
I can stop my search for a bottom line….juggler metaphor and deep end of pool swimming metaphor helps me feel the concept.
Such lovely clarity. This will be shared with friends struggling to understand the concept.
With gratitude . . .
This is another one of those topics I have heard many times over the years I have studied with you, but somehow this time it finds its way in just a little deeper, or at a different angle. That always leaves me shaking my head and saying “ha!”.
This blog brought me to the times where I still battle for the bottom line, but that was followed by the sense of peace and the sigh of relief that Julie and Tracy describe above.
Such a life lesson…
Not having a bottom line is sometimes difficult and other times it is a sense of remembering and you go ah.
I love this explanation. I have often thought of taking the next step of spiritual growth as “stepping off a cliff” in the sense of not knowing what would happen at the next level.
But now I can understand it as learning to relax more into the “cosmic cushion…A cloud that holds you.”
Thank you for such clear explanation and teaching.
WOW this blog is awesome!!!
I have seen this tendency in my self, to look and yearn for the bottom line.
Clearly the wiser approach is to learn to swim.
Many thanks for you clarity and honesty. I think too many teachers tell their students what the students want to hear rather than the truth.
Reflection on “no bottom line” feels full of unbounded possibilities.
So beautifully illustrated… I wonder, can “is-ness” be considered the bottom line?
Scary and liberating at the same time.
“Is-ness” has no bottom and no line… no edge, no handle, no nothing. Assigning “a bottom line” to “is-ness” has more to do with how we would like to view things than with how things actually are. We tend to think in dualistic terms. It is to some degree ok to think of “is-ness” as a bottom line, but viewing it that way becomes misleading.
For example, in the relative, up creates down. Yin creates yang. Right creates left. The notion of pure good creates the notion of pure bad. There is no pure bad. Everything is God. However, some are terribly confused about their true nature. Even “bad” people will in time discover their true nature is Oneness with God. They are just confused. Viewing “is-ness” as part of relativity (i.e. as a bottom line) confuses our understanding of existence. There is only God, and varying degrees of awareness of God. There is no absolute opposite value to God. I hope this is clear. If not, we can discuss it further in class. It is a very important point to understand.
Beautiful blog. It helps me understand my fear of no bottom line, the perceived “abyss”, as my conditioning, not the way things really are. Such a relief. Thank you!
Thank you for further clarifying the concept. Intellectually I can follow your explanation. In time, I will find the true understanding… within myself. Thank you so much!
Great Blog! So unfathomable…
Thank you for your last comment to Rayshan.
This blog is really wonderful
Beautiful blog, concept, analogy… really, it’s a beautiful reality. The thought of being able to swim in existence, rather than running and struggling through a maze… I love that reality is more beautiful than I’ve been able to conceive thus far.
The image of the juggling helped me!
As usual, your words capture the essential nature of life and bring that elusive quality to the forefront so it can me felt more deeply.