Non-Duality and the Mystery of Consciousness by Peter Russell

What is non-duality? What do we mean by consciousness? Does it really exist? What is reality? Is there any thing “out there”? Why don’t we see consciousness in the material world? What do we mean by “I”? Why is any of this important?

From the deep pools of Eastern wisdom, to the fast-paced rapids of the West, Peter Russell has mastered many fields, and synthesized them with consummate artistry. Weaving his unique blend of scientific rationale, global vision, and intuitive wisdom, Peter brings a sharp, critical mind to the challenge of self-awakening. The next great frontier of human exploration, he shows, is not outer space, but inner space — the development of the human mind. He has degrees in theoretical physics, experimental psychology, and computer science from the University of Cambridge in England, and has written ten books in this area, including The Global Brain Awakens, Waking Up in Time, and most recently, From Science to God: A Physicist’s Journey into the Mystery of Consciousness.


38 thoughts on “Non-Duality and the Mystery of Consciousness by Peter Russell

  1. That's almost been the agenda by the new-age movement as well trying to get us to doubt the realism to kind of keep yrsef trapped within a self defeating framework.

  2. Buddhists call that essence which is pure and pristine awareness, "the still center of the turning worlds." The words used to articulate the idea that Peter Russell does an admirable job of gently guiding us toward, is really more of a feeling than an intellectual construct. It is awareness devoid of any experience, awareness liberated from the burdens and bonds of linear time. It just "is."

  3. 19 min and 50 seconds and this dude has said nothing…He falsely equates non duality with sensation or mental stillness as oppose to cognition/thinking…He just repeats some basic truths about meditation pretending its profound deep philosophical understanding…waste of time…no thanks.

  4. Nonduality….not two….the original meaning of that is we are one with God, i.e. Brahman. Our true Self is the Atman which is identical with Brahman. That is what Advaita is really saying.
    The path that leads to that realization is the middle path. When we find the balance in every area of our life along with meditation and study of the Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita. Advaita.

  5. Get swallowed by a paradox, take a sip from the singular yet infinite churn of non-duality. We are the Universe experiencing itself, and it is good.

  6. A pot is clay before it is a pot . You are Consciousness first before you are you as a differred Self. The differredness illusion is all that happens. The universe is its illusion. But for the differredness there is nothing except Consciousness.

  7. What does it MEAN to "know the essence"? To have a representational concept (ie conceptual knowledge or conceptual awareness) is not "knowing" the clay so to speak.

    EG to quote Peter above " We can divide non – duality into two areas"…………………??

  8. The Law myoho-renge-kyo represents the identity of what some scientists refer to as the ‘unified field of all consciousnesses’. In other words, it’s a sound vibration that is the essence of all of existence and non-existence, the ultimate creative force behind planets, stars, nebulae, people, animals, trees, fish, birds, and all phenomena, manifest or latent. All matter and intelligence are simply waves or ripples manifesting to and from this core source. Consciousness (enlightenment) is itself the true creator of everything that is, ever was and ever will be, right down to the minutest particles of dust, each being an individual ripple or wave. The big difference between chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo and most other conventional prayers is that instead of depending on a ‘middleman’ to connect us to our state of enlightenment, we’re able to do it ourselves by tapping directly into it by way of self-produced sound vibration.

    On the subject of ‘Who or What Is God?’, when we compare the concept of ‘God’, as a separate entity that is forever watching down on us, to Nichiren’s teachings, the true omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresence of what most people call ‘God’ is our enlightenment, which exists nowhere else but within us.

    When the disciples asked Jesus where the Kingdom of God is, didn’t he tell them that it was within them?

    Some say that ‘God’ is an entity that can never be seen. I think that the vast amount of information that is constantly being conveyed via electromagnetic waves gives us proof of how an invisible state of ‘God’ could actually exist. It’s widely known that certain data being relayed by way of electromagnetic waves has the potential to help bring about extraordinary and powerful effects, including instant global awareness of something or mass emotional reaction. As well as many other things, it’s also common knowledge that these waves can easily be used to detonate a bomb or to even enable NASA to control the movements of a robot as far away as the Moon or Mars. However, none of this is possible without a receiver to decode the information that is being transmitted. Without the receiver, the information would remain impotent.

    In a very similar way, it’s important for us to have our ‘receiver’ switched on so that we can activate a clear and precise understanding of our life, all other life and what we and all else that exists truly is. Chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo helps us to achieve this because it allows us to reach into the core of our enlightenment and switch it on. That’s because the sound vibration of myoho-renge-kyo represents the combination of the three major laws that underlie all existence.

    Myoho represents the Law of latency and manifestation (Nature) and consists of two alternating states. One state of myo is where everything in life that’s not obvious to us exists. This includes our stored memories when we’re not thinking about them, our hidden potential and inner emotions whenever they’re not being expressed, our desires, our fears, our wisdom, happiness, karma, and more importantly, our enlightenment. The other state, ho, is where everything in Life exists whenever it becomes obvious to us, such as when a thought pops up from within our memory, whenever we experience or express our emotions, or whenever a good or bad effect manifests from our karma. When anything becomes apparent, it simply means that it has come out of the state of ‘myo’ (dormancy/latency) and into a state of ho (manifestation). It’s simply the difference between consciousness and unconsciousness, being awake or asleep, or knowing and not knowing something.

    The second law, renge, governs and controls the functions of myoho, ren meaning cause and ge meaning effect. The two laws of myoho and renge, both functions together simultaneously, as well as underlies all spiritual and physical existence.

    The final and third part of the tri-combination, kyo, is what allows the law myoho to be able to integrate with the law renge. It’s the great, invisible thread of energy that fuses and connects together all Life and matter, as well as the past, present and future. It is often termed the Universal Law of Communication. Perhaps it could even be compared to the string theory that some scientists now suspect exists.

    Just as our body cells, thoughts, feelings and all else are constantly fluctuating within us, everything in the world around us and beyond is also in a constant state of flux, in accordance with these three laws. In fact, more things are going back and forth between the two states of myo and ho in a single moment than it would ever be possible for us to calculate or describe. And it doesn't matter how big or small, important or trivial that anything may appear to be, everything that’s ever existed in the past exists now or will exist in the future, exists only because of the workings of myoho-renge-kyo.

    These three laws are also the basis of the four fundamental forces and if they didn't function, neither we nor anything else could go on existing. Simply put, all forms of existence, including the seasons, day and night, birth, death and so on, are all moving forward in an ongoing flow of continuation, rhythmically reverting back and forth between the two universal states of myo and ho in absolute accordance with renge and by way of kyo. Even stars are dying and being reborn in accordance with the workings of what the combination myoho-renge-kyo represents.

    Nam, or Namu, on the other hand, is a password or a key; it allows us to reach deep into our life and fuse with or become one with myoho-renge-kyo. On a more personal basis, nothing ever happens by chance or coincidence, it’s the causes that we’ve made in our past, or are presently making, that determine how these laws function uniquely in each of our lives from moment to moment, as well in our environment. By facing east, in harmony with the direction that the Earth is turning, and rhythmically chanting Nam-myoho-renge-kyo for a minimum of ten minutes daily, anyone can experience actual proof of its positive effects in their life.

    In so doing, we can pierce through even the thickest layers of our karma and activate our Buddha Nature (enlightened state). We’re then able to summon forth the wisdom needed to challenge, overcome and change our negative circumstances into positive ones. It brings forth the wisdom that can free us from the ignorance and stupidity that is preventing us from accepting and being proud of the person that we truly are, regardless of our race, colour, gender or sexual preference. We are also able to see and understand our circumstances and environment more clearly, as well as attract and connect with any needed external beneficial forces and situations.

    Actual proof soon becomes apparent to anyone who chants the words Nam-myoho-renge-kyo on a regular daily basis. Everything is subject to the law of Cause and Effect, so the strength of the result from chanting depends on dedication, sincerity and determination. To explain it more simply, the difference could be compared to making a sound on a piano, creating a melody, or producing a song and so on.

    NB: There are frightening, disturbing sounds and there are tranquil and relaxing sounds. It's the emotional result from any sound that can trigger off a mood or even instantly change one. When chanting Nam-Myoho-Renge-Kyo each day you are producing a sound vibration that is the password to your true inner-self – this soon becomes apparent when you start reassessing your views on various things, such as your fears and desires etc. The important way to get the best result when chanting is not to see things in a conventional way (difficult to achieve but can be done), rather than reaching out to an external source, you need to reach into your own life and bring your needs and desires to fruition from within, including any help that you may need. Think of it as a seed within you that you are bringing sunshine and water to in order for it to grow, blossom and bring forth fruit or flowers. It’s important to understand that everything that we need in life, all the answers and potential to achieve our dreams, already exist within us.

    @ OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN sings about Nam-myoho-renge-kyo

    @ BOY GEORGE sings about Nam-myoho-renge-kyo

  9. Hey, right now Ive got a real "hard problem." But I have the distinct feeling that with some further introspection and the proper specified attention, that soon the nature of my "essence" will come out into the light.

  10. "Seek and ye shall not find." Brilliant stuff from Peter Russell.

    My teacher is fond of repeating "as long as you seek happiness, so long you will remain unhappy; as long as you seek security, so long you will remain insecure; as long as you seek enlightenment, so long you will remain ignorant."

  11. My understanding is that the greatest gift we have is that the world is meaningless ,there is no inherent meaning to anything
    The meaning we give to all things is what we receive from them. We are that powerful…
    There is no one truth in which to measure all truths if that was so,there would only be one person
    Everything exits now, no such thing as non existent . Non existence if filled up with everything that doesn't exist!
    Tee hee.. 💓. 🌹

  12. Peter Russell is brilliant at this, but it's the nature of this philosophy that makes it difficult to explain, for even language cannot define it completely, it can only be experienced.

  13. Really?? Non-Duality in Christian traditions?? Muslim Sufi Traditions?? Do they even understand the concept?? A GOD who curses non-believers?? Who have to be converted to the real faith?? Please..

  14. One of my favorite verses from the Upanishads is "Tena tyaktena bhunjitha." – Let It Go and Rejoice … just heard it here…hope i too can find that…

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