Where a Contemplative Practice with Brainwave Entrainment Can Take Us
I’ve been doing a brainwave entrainment meditation practice on a daily basis for eight years now. It’s hard for me to imagine living life without a contemplative practice at this point, and hard to imagine living without the benefits that I’ve gotten from this ongoing commitment to my inner work and inner growth. This technology not only opens up the possibility of a deep, inner spiritual life, it enables the release of trauma and conditioning from the past, improves cognitive functioning and creativity, and many other things. In fact, I don’t think I would be living at all, if it weren’t for this technology, because I was so near suicide many times with the depth of my depression. It has been an extraordinary journey. Every day is a gift.
So, the interior dimension has become an essential part of my practice and my being alive. What do we find in our interiors? We findour essential self; as Karlfried Graf Dürckheim, German philosopher and spiritual writer, describes it, that which is indestructible begins to arise within us as we annihilate ourselves over and over and over again. What does Dürckheim mean by that? I think he means that in our contemplative practice, we begin a process of inner archaeology, going through layer after layer of our dysfunctional conditionings, patterns, stories, traumas, and all the things that control us, largely unconsciously. We work through and annihilate whatever is keeping us from being really present, alive, and being our best selves. That is when we begin to tap into the deeper dimension of who we really are and always have been at the deepest level—that which is indestructible.
Are we indestructible? Well, yes. At the deepest level and the most real level, absolutely. So when we realize that, not in a merely intellectual, cognitive form, but in a deeply interior, contemplative way, then it’s like, “Oh, wow.” It changes the whole story.
Certainly, the small self, the small “I,” the small ego still exists, but it’s just a temporary formation of that which we really are, which is indestructible. The thing is to play our part really, really well with the time we have in this particular vehicle. While we’re here, we can make sure that we play the game well and do what we’re supposed to do.
Psychologist Carl Jung said that when we begin to actually do the work, when we begin to get in touch with the unconscious and the archetypes, God, everything that we’re not aware of, shadow work, all that stuff, we begin what he called “individuating,” which is a term for waking up, becoming all you can be, enlightenment, if you will. He also said that when we really get on that road, synchronicities begin to occur. Non-linear connections, meaningful, non-random events, just start happening all over the place. The more we move into our interior places and connect with that which is indestructible within us, it seems to shift our relationship from the outside—things that start happening in the out-there world seem to have a harmonic connection with what’s going on in our interiors.
Ultimately, there is no interior or exterior—it’s all the same thing. In the canonical gospels, Jesus said that the Kingdom of Heaven is within you. In the Gospel According to Thomas (which is a gospel that was found in Egypt in 1948 in an earthen jar along with other early books that had been banned and destroyed by the traditional church some 2000 years ago), Jesus allegedly says that the Kingdom is not only within you, but it’s without you. He says that if you look under a rock, there I am. He’s talking about the indestructible, essential self—the big Self—here. You split a piece of wood, I’m there. Look under the table, I’m there. Look in your friend’s eyes, in the tree. God is everywhere, in all things.
As we continue on with our interior practice, we uncover a fountain of essential spirit, wisdom, and Self that is truly who we are at the deepest level. Then things begin to shift—our relationship to our egos, our relationship to our issues, our relationship to our families, to our purpose, to the world, to politics, to art, to nature. All is different; it’s a different story. It’s not the end of the story, but it’s the beginning of the story, once we begin to tap into that.
A lot of us who are using brainwave entrainment technology and doing the practice perhaps haven’t had that kind of awakening or realization yet. But, some of us have. Of course, this is just the first step. There is a shift at one point, and things take on a different nature, but it doesn’t mean that we can just sit back on our enlightened backside, if you will. Now we really have to start working hard to bring this understanding into the world, and also use it to deal with our own ego glitches and bumps.
If we don’t do the personal ego work, as generations of dysfunctional spiritual teachers have taught us, even if we have some kind of deep realization, it becomes unbalanced and gets all screwed up, and we start projecting all of our shadow self that we haven’t dealt with. So, we have to do the individual ego shadow work, and we have to do the deep, interior, contemplative practice.
When I say contemplative, I just mean experiencing the deeper, essential dimension of reality, hopefully on a pretty much ongoing basis. I think that with what we know now about interior practice, and with the help (thank God) of these meditation technologies that we’re talking about here, we can really begin to tap into that which is indestructible in a deeper, completely embodied, heartfelt, mind-inclusive, holistic, Integral way. That is really, really exciting.
This opportunity hasn’t been available for very many of us, historically speaking. Now it seems that if we have the courage to have a little commitment and get started, then the universe will meet us and give us the ongoing strength, courage, and commitment that we need to do this work. Of course, it’s all about practice. We’ve got to use the tools skillfully, wisely, and dedicatedly to get results. But, we can do it now. So I find that extremely important. As I said at the beginning, I can’t imagine living a life without an interior, ongoing, grounding practice.
Adapted from iAwake Technologies’ free, weekly teleconference call on October 2, 2013.
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John Dupuy is the CEO of iAwake Technologies and the founder of Integral Recovery, a holistic addiction treatment approach inspired by Ken Wilber’s Integral Model. He is also the author of Integral Recovery: A Revolutionary Approach to Alcoholism and Addiction, recently published by SUNY Press. As a pioneer in the use of brainwave entrainment in therapy and personal development, John has dedicated his life to helping others deepen their spiritual practice and transform their lives.
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