Part One: The Idea
The fundamental belief behind a life of joy is that the core of my being is fundamentally safe. There is nothing that I can do or fail to do that would infringe upon my existence.
This belief is essential to the path of the lightworker, which I’ve written about in my book. On the path of lightwork, the source of power and the only motive is love. To love is to know that you are free, and to be free is to be tied to nothing of impermanence.
It may then appear illogical to imagine, for instance, that I am already dead. For if I am dead, am I not impermanent?
The Grand Game (is already won)
Here’s the thing. If physical death is to occur, then, in essence, it has already occurred. That which is certain to happen has essentially happened already. May as well live like it is so.
Similarly, if you live to physically survive, you are certain to fail. For the fate of your present body is sealed.
The game of physical survival is simply a game of time. No matter how you play it, the game is finite. The outcome is certain.
Those who appear most successful at the game of physical survival are those who play the longest. ‘Tis a game of endurance. It’s a contest to see who can keep running the longest.
But, of course, everyone stops running eventually. At some point, everyone needs to sit down and rest.
What if there was a different contest going on here? What if instead of a test of who can run the longest, life is a fun game where we see how enjoyable our run can be? What does the run look like then?
This game isn’t time-based. It’s distance-based. Let’s say the distance is 100 miles. It’s the same distance for everyone: no one runs farther, no one runs less. We all are on a 100 mile racecourse. Everyone takes a different amount of time to complete the distance. But everyone completes the distance. Everyone. There are no cutoff times, nor is there anything you can do to get kicked out of the race. No matter what, you will run to completion.
The only objective factor that remains, then, is time. It’ll take as long as it takes. Everything else about the experience is determined by you. You get to choose what your experience of this race is like. You can run with eyes open or eyes closed; on hands, or on feet; with friends, or on your own. You can sing while you run, or remain silent. You can eat while you run, or go without nourishment. You can take a lot of naps along the way, or you can power through. You can contemplate every last detail of the run, or you can simply run. It’s up to you.
If the race is a game of enjoyment, rather than a contest of who can finish first, then it isn’t really a race at all. It’s just a game. Since everyone completes the game, everyone wins. It doesn’t really matter who finishes when. Everyone plays as long as they’d like to—that’s all.
Likewise, everyone finishes this race with grandeur. It turns out that everybody has a kick-ass finishing sprint. Everybody goes out with a bang. It is the most magnificent expression of their athleticism they have yet demonstrated. At the end, all of your energy conspires to get you across the finish line.
Your success, my friend, is guaranteed. You have already won the grand game.
Why, then, need you worry so fervently about losing? What is it that you fear losing, anyhow—your reputation? Your peace of mind? Your present view of the world? Your life?
All of the things which you fear losing are impermanent. They someday shall die. They will not remain in their present form.
In fact, the form of all things is changing all the time. Your face is not 100% identical to the face you had yesterday. You may have woken up this morning with a new pimple on your forehead, or a new scratch on your nose that wasn’t there yesterday. Why, for some men, the face they have at 5 PM is much hairier than the face they had at 9 this morning!
If your face is certain to change- and it is- then the present form of your face shall not last. In fact, it is passing now. The present moment, when it begins, is already beginning to end. Just as you begin to contemplate it, there it goes behind you. And before your eyes emerges the next.
Do you think that what you see is present reality? It is not so. You live in the past. The present has not yet arrived. And the future has already passed you by. What shall be has already been; and what is now, has yet to be.
As such, enjoy the past, excitedly await the present, and be grateful for the future. Be grateful for what is already done. Then you may take pleasure in what is here now, and anticipate what is yet to be.
Beings who are fundamentally safe are permanent, and beings who are permanent are timeless. They live not in the physical world of the logical and the linear. They live instead in the absolute realm of the complete and the boundless.
Life unfolds sequentially, yet it occurs simultaneously. Everything happens all at once, yet is made manifest in a time-based order.
The sequential and simultaneous natures of life occur at the same time—and yet, they occur separately, for they logically cannot be conceived of at the same time.
As such, you are neither here nor there. You are not linear, yet you are not absolute. You are not intellectual, yet you are not pure awareness. You are not physical, yet you are not non-physical.
Instead, you live in the place between here and there—or, perhaps in the space all around here and there, or even above or below it. Why, you may be in all of those places at once!
Whatever the case, you are neither here nor there, and this is the ultimate space of existence. For just as you can never be here, you can never be found there.
Right now, I may say that I am right here. And I have never stopped being right here. As far as I am concerned, I have never not been. In my perception, I always am here. And if I were to ever be not here, but elsewhere, then I would not be here to know about it.
Every night I become unaware of my body for 7 hours. You might even say that I leave my body. Perhaps I have gone elsewhere. Yet that elsewhere, for me, is still here. What is the big fuss, then? I am always here.
Or perhaps I am not here-- nor am I there. In this way, I always am.
Surrender to Certainty
Living as though my time has already come and passed is the easiest way for me to understand that I have no needs—least of all, a need for fear.
Let’s say my life was guaranteed to end exactly 18 months from this very day. Given that fact, I might feel inclined to make some changes in the way I go about living.
What would those changes look like? Would I suddenly be overcome by a sense of urgency, feeling that I must do as much as possible in what little time I have left? Need I make haste in order to prove that my existence has been worthwhile?
Or would I live in full surrender to the fact? If my death is certain, then as far as I am concerned, it has already happened. It makes no difference when it appears to happen. The game takes as long as it takes. I do not cross the finish line until I get there.
If I had 18 months to live, I’d have no need to do or be anything in particular, for my life is complete. For what could bring upon need but time? When you are timeless, what need you? You have everything you could possibly need in this moment now.
When you have everything you need here, then you have no need to be here. At the same time, you need not fear what shall happen when you get there, for if your needs are met now, then they are met for eternity. And so it is, that you are neither here nor there. You’ve no need to be here, nor to concern yourself with there.
If seeing life in this way is so dangerous, how am I standing right here before you now? And if in the next moment I am not, I simply am elsewhere. There is no fear in being elsewhere—for, again, I am neither here nor there as it is.
My being is solid, yet my form moves like water. I am, all at once, everywhere and nowhere. I cannot be found, yet I am all there is to find.
If the core of my being is fundamentally safe for all time, then physically alive or dead makes no difference. I’ve nothing to preserve—there is only dust to guard, and dust needs no guarding. I’ve only to serve, then, my purpose of being.
No matter how much longer I shall live in this form, I can live intelligently as I see fit. I can grow into the magnificence of my being. I can love without hindrance, for there is no way of relating to the world which could cause me any harm.
You never forget who you are. You just see yourself in different lights is all. Those different lights come together as though to form white light, which is made up of all the colors known to man. This light of completeness then shines upon who you really are.
Being dead means I’ve no need. I’ve no cause for regret. I can make no fundamental errors. I’ve the keys to all the kingdom. I can go where I please, knowing all the while that always I am in the kingdom. I don’t forget who I am. I just play pretend sometimes. And in that pretend comes the full knowing of who I am.
It is like John Coltrane’s saxophone playing (as discussed in Robert Greene’s Mastery): by first taking on the voices (i.e. musical styles) of all those who were not himself, he enabled his own voice to emerge in complete beauty. Indeed, all the voices became his own. He owned them as though part of himself.
Part Two: Applying the Idea
The Explorer’s Guild
Here’s the tricky part. When I imagine myself to be already dead, I tend to imagine that this is in contrast to everyone else around me, who is already living. I imagine I am a ghost in a world that is alive.
But what if I were to imagine that everyone else was dead, too? Not only all the humans, but the whole world? All of nature? The totality of physical reality? What if it all is ghostly? What if it all has passed on already?
In essence, it has. Physically, all shall die. Even this computer, which is supposed to have no life, shall someday work no more—not in its present form.
When I consider that, the idea that I’m already dead while everyone else is not makes no sense. For if all things are of the same stuff, and are really one thing, does it not make sense that we all share the same status of life?
It seems that either way I go, there is still a high potential to have a fun, fulfilling, fundamentally enjoyable life.
When I imagine it is only myself who is already dead, I assume myself to be like a ghost, who has come to Earth to interact with the living. Perhaps I am here to help them remember who they really are. Sometimes this means having deep conversation with them, or simply having fun with them. Other times, when they are afraid and would like to impose their fears on me, it means not feeding those fears. I do both of these things by remembering who I really am. For if I am a timeless being, I’ve no need for fear, and I can have all the fun in the universe.
When I imagine that everyone else is dead, as am I, the world becomes an endless playground. We have taken these physical forms and come to this Earth to explore the vast possibilities for experience it has to offer us. By way of this endless variety of experiences we see ourselves in an endless number of different lights. All of these lights shine down on us together all at once, to reveal the true beauty of the completeness of who we really are. We are all here working and playing together to experience and create the grandest idea about ourselves conceivable—for it is the most complete idea that is the highest truth. Each person explores and crafts their own piece of the puzzle. Everyone is special in their own way.
When I imagine that we all are dead, I literally walk among kindred spirits. Everyone is a friendly ghost, for we all are working toward a shared goal. That’s right—every single one of us. Not everyone will appear to know what is going on, but this is fine: that apparent lack of knowing is simply their piece of the puzzle. It is the wavelength of the light they choose to see themselves in now. And if all light is light, then what can be so dark about it?
All the world is the explorers’ guild. There is no part of it that cannot be—even that which claims to not be. If exploration is what we are here to do, then we can do no wrong. There is no way to explore incorrectly, for we all are always exploring something.
As in the first perspective (i.e. only I am dead), when everyone here is a born-again explorer, the pursuit of reminding people who they really are is perfectly valid. For one thing, that’s the ultimate goal of our present existence anyway. For another thing, such a pursuit is but another exploration—it is another light in which to see oneself, which adds to the collection of lights that blends together to reveal our totality.
What happens when I take the idea a step further, and say that everything in the physical world is already dead—including the world itself? In that case, there is nothing at all which is not me. I see no reason why exploration would become an invalid pursuit in such a world. In that case, we may say that it is not only humans who are exploring—it is the totality of reality itself that is exploring itself.
The trees, the grass, the squirrels, the wind, the furniture—they’re all part of it. They all came here for the dance, just like you and I did. They are not merely a part of our explorations. We are all part of all the explorations. We all hold a piece to the puzzle, and the puzzle is the totality of reality. By God, the puzzle is the ultimate reality of reality.
The puzzle is massive. It may very well be endless. The ultimate reality of reality is absolute—and so, it must be endless. For that which is absolute has no form, and that which has no form is without end. It takes boundaries to create form. Without constraints of some sort, form cannot be.
All Roads Lead Home
As I said, each of these three perspectives holds the potential for an awesome experience of life. The third perspective (i.e. everything has already passed on and is exploring) may appear to be the ultimate and most comprehensive perspective to take. But if the nature of reality is exploration, then the first two perspectives are perfectly valid as well, for they are explorations of their own.
Additionally, each of these three perspectives builds on the last. I did not consider the second until I considered the first, nor did I consider the third until I considered the second. Evolution is a progression of ideas. Though it is possible, I did not go from believing that I am a demon to believing that I am God (as are all things) in an instant. From the perspective that all occurs simultaneously, indeed, I did. Yet, from the perspective that all unfolds sequentially, as though on a timeline, it took a few years. And my highest idea about myself continues to unfold now.
The experience of the evolution of my being is the fundamental exploration. I change my idea about myself, and so I change. With that change comes a change in my experience—and with a change in my experience comes something new to explore. When I explore something new, I evolve. It is inevitable that I do so, for to see myself in a new light is to craft for myself another key to another piece of the kingdom. The more places I can consciously go, the more evolved I am—and, thus, the more evolved I can become. Exploration is the way of evolution.
Serious Fun (The Trial)
I now choose to explore this perspective as an extension of my highest idea about myself. I choose not only to explore it, but to immerse myself in it, and thus to explore it with a high level of awareness. While exploration is fun, I like to explore the exploration of exploring exploring seriously (catch my drift?). In other words, I like to explore deliberately and with full focus on what I am exploring.
A fabulous route to immersion is the good ol’ 30 Day Trial. This doesn’t mean that I expect to drag myself out of bed for 30 straight days and painfully force this perspective upon my unwilling brain each morning. No—it doesn’t mean that I predict that I will put tail between legs and run far, far away from ever thinking about this idea ever again.
Rather, the 30 day period is simply a container in which to have intensity of focus. I don’t doubt my ability to take this perspective. I just want to get high mileage out of it. I want to navigate its deepest depths and soar to its highest heights. Intensity is more readily experienced when you explore with intensity. When you explore with intensity, ideas evolve quickly. Because there is no end to evolution, when you explore with intensity, you unlock more doors more quickly—and when you unlock more doors, you open the way to even more doors.
It’s like juggling 20 balls at once. When you stay in the flow of a particular exploration, you can juggle more balls; and, when you can juggle more balls, you can juggle even more balls, because the increased flow of concentration allows you to do so.
Of course, setting a timeframe in which to explore the timelessness of my being sounds counterintuitive—even outright paradoxical. Indeed, the path of fearlessness often appears paradoxical when viewed logically. Yet, the path of fearlessness is the path of love, and love makes perfect sense as it is. So, worry not, my friend—it shall work.
Remember-- I am neither here nor there. As such, I can view life sequentially and then view life simultaneously, without really being either. I shall use time, yet have no concern for it. For 30 days, I shall live in the eternal moment of now—in the eternality of a being who knows life nor death. Now that sounds like quite a proposition. J
Ideally, I will remain within the third of the three “Already-dead” perspectives as much as possible. That is my focus. However, I foresee myself floating between the second and the first at times as well. If I feel mentally exhausted, I don’t have to throw out the baby with the bathwater. I’ve been exploring the first perspective for about a month now as it is, so I can at least remain there pretty solidly. Plus, several days ago I turned my alarm clock so that I can’t see the time unless I deliberately walk over to it and pick it up. Being less time conscious is certainly helpful, since who needs time when you’re dead?
Then again, who knows. I may very well take a perspective beyond even the vastness of the third. 30 days from now, I may see the world in a way that is beyond my present imagining. Indeed, I predict that I will. I don’t need for myself to see the world in such a way, but I imagine it is very likely that I will.
I feel that I’ve gotten the basics of polarity (i.e. lightwork) and subjective reality down to a pretty reliable rhythm in my life. No matter where my life leads, these perspectives remain. They have been integrated so strongly that they are interwoven. In other words, they aren’t going anywhere. They are the default approach I take to life now.
I see my current exploration as the combination of lightwork and of the subjective perspective. The premise that I am already dead, and am simply here exploring needlessly, appears to be the natural next step beyond the first two ideas. Where I am now is where evolution would have me go. Once I form a basic understanding that my being is fundamentally safe here and that who I really am is awareness itself, it only makes sense that I would now see my physical form as having already died, and I now experience my being neither here nor there.
When I am awareness itself, and I am aware that this reality is fundamentally loving, it is only in my nature to see that I am reality itself. And to see that I am reality itself, I cannot be in reality it nor beyond it. I must instead be in both places at once—and thus, in all places. To accomplish this I must be that which is dead, come to experience the possibilities of life.
The core of your being is the totality of your being. Your being is not concentrated in one place, but is everywhere.
You are painlessness. You are warmth. You are silence. This is how you can experience pain. This is how you can experience cold. This is how you can experience sound.
Yet, you do not become these things. Never are your aches too intense, your shivering too violent, nor your muteness unendurable. For never can you suffer, nor freeze, nor fail to communicate. Never do you fail to be taken care of. Never do you neglect to be heard. When you are, you cannot be.
When the unfettered surface rides too hard on your rawness, dive down deep into the vast silence of the cool, refreshing water below. It is there that the core of who you are lives. And it is there that is everywhere, for to the sea of pure life there is no end.
As the breath of life is fleeting, the moment of death is eternal. In your death, you shall find new life. May you come to know true freedom. It is the freedom of unbound, everlasting love.
Do not live like you are going to die tomorrow. Live as though you are already dead.