NIRMALA – A Short Fairy Tale About Being
As promised, part two of Nirmala‘s “Beyond No Self”.
This a short fairy tale about Being, which captures some of this freedom (mentioned in his earlier post Beyond No Self) in a story.
Once upon no time, there was an infinite and eternal Being. Needless to say this was one big Being. Being infinite and eternal meant that no matter where or when it went, there it was. And of course, anything that big was made of empty space, as space is the only thing big enough to be that infinite.
While space is a wonderfully low maintenance thing to be, since it can’t be harmed, this Being still had a problem: There was no one else. Since it was already everywhere and every-when, there was no place or time for anyone else. It was not a horrible problem, but still there was no one else to talk to, dance with, or play with.
What’s an infinite Being to do? It can’t really just create lesser beings inside of itself as that would not be very interesting to an infinite Being. For a truly infinite and eternal being to create little lesser beings to play with would be like you or me making dolls to play with as an adult. There’s nothing wrong with that, but that’s not very interesting after a while.
Then it had a great idea! Being infinite meant it also had infinite potential, so rather than create lesser beings, it decided to create more infinite beings. At first this would seem impossible since there is the question of where would you put another infinite Being? There already is no space left over once you have one infinite Being. But the great thing about space is that it is completely empty as long as its pure space or pure potential, so two spaces can actually occupy the same space!
That was the solution! So Being created an infinite number of infinite space Beings just like itself. In a sense, Being cloned itself. Now, rather than having just a wind-up doll version of a Being to relate to, it had real, fully amazing infinite Beings like itself to relate to.
Even better, it quickly discovered that as long as one of the infinite space Beings stayed “home” as infinite space to hold the endless universes in place, then all the rest were free to contract into all kinds of shapes and sizes. In fact, all a Being of infinite potential has to do to contract into a different shape or size is think about it, and voilà it happens! That’s the power of infinite potential!
Now not only could all these infinite Beings hang out as one very big space (which of course really meant hanging out as one Being, since two spaces in the same space are really still just one space), they could also play at contracting into all kinds of lesser expressions of their infinite potential.
Now why would they want to do that? Why would something infinite want to experience being less than its infinite self? Well remember these Beings are not only infinite, but also eternal, and eternity is a very long time! That means they all had a lot of time to kill. What does it matter if you spend a little time experiencing yourself as less than your complete potential, especially if you can do an entire eon standing on your head and still have all the time in the world?
And so Being, as many Beings, was now free to talk, dance, create, and play in all kinds of crazy wonderful ways because now there was someone else to talk, dance, create, and play with. Party time!!!
Ever since, it has been discovering all the different things it can identify with and temporarily become and all of the truly strange and amazing things it can do once it has become less than itself. Infinite space can’t really play soccer or be a super nova or fall in love or have its heart-broken or create a new universe or fly a kite when it’s expanded into its original nature as infinite space, but if it contracts into a form or expression of itself, then it can do all of that and more!
So that is what it’s been up to ever since, and it’s really just getting started, since it still has so much time on its hands; the rest of eternity is still a very long time. That is also why it’s so amazing to relate to others: because it is never some lesser incomplete being across the table from you. It is always an infinite Being with infinite potential that you are talking to or playing with. No wonder they are so convincing in their role as an apparent separate individual. It is really God playing that role. There are only Gods upon Gods upon Gods being everybody and everything and doing everything that is done! That is what we all are.
Pretty clever solution if you want to have some fun —don’t you think?
*from That is That: Essays About True Nature, which is a collection of articles and answers to questions posed by spiritual seekers. This e-book is available free here. Copyright © 2010 by Daniel Erway (aka Nirmala).
After a lifetime of spiritual seeking, Nirmala met his teacher, Neelam, a devotee of H.W.L. Poonja (Papaji). She convinced Nirmala that seeking wasn’t necessary; and after experiencing a profound spiritual awakening in India, he began offering satsang and Nondual Spiritual Mentoring with Neelam’s blessing. This tradition of spiritual wisdom has been most profoundly disseminated by Ramana Maharshi, a revered Indian saint, who was Papaji’s teacher. Nirmala offers a unique vision and a gentle, compassionate approach, which adds to this rich tradition of inquiry into the truth of Being. He is also the author of several books including Nothing Personal: Seeing Beyond the Illusion of a Separate Self. He has offered satsang throughout the United States and Canada since 1998. Nirmala lives in Sedona, Arizona with his wife, Gina Lake.
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