Beyond a Spiritual Identity
This questioner asks John all you might also be wondering about going home, within, to what we really are. Together, they travel through the levels of personality, the self, the nervous system, the mind, all the way to our real purpose of being here. It’s a lively dialogue, full of real answers.
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With John de Ruiter from the January 21 Interactive Live Streams on Zoom
Q: Am I the path back to awareness?
John: (Shakes head, no.) Your path back to awareness is your self. Your self doesn’t come from your self. What you’re accustomed to is being situated in your self, which is what has you believing that your self is you: your thinking, your feeling, your emotions, your will. You, situated into your self, the way back into awareness is a core level of honesty. When you are honest to the core, you sit much more deeply within than anything to do with your self or your life.
Q: Who is honest, what is honest in me if I am the self?
John: The honesty starts in your self. When there is a core honesty in your self, you know that there is a deeper within than your self. As you continue with that core honesty, that takes you out of your self, more deeply within into just quieted awareness. Stillness.
Q: This is the path that I’m asking about.
John: That’s a path, but that path is not you. That path is a direction within. That path takes you within; it takes you deeper and deeper within until you realize, all on its own, not who you are but what you really are. Who you are is an identity, and it’s fixed in your self. What you really are is of depth and it has qualities. So what you really are is a profound quality, such as openness. Openness has no sense of self because it’s deeper than your self. Softness has no sense of self.
Q: That’s qualities, yes? Qualities of awareness?
John: Qualities of awareness, still. Awareness that is still of your self; concerning your self, it’s still. If you, awareness, are being your self, you’re not still, you’re busy. Deeper within than your self, you’re not busy with your self, taken with your self. You’re not in a groove of doing with thought, feeling, will and emotion, believing that all of that is you. Awareness in stillness is not a who, it’s a what. It’s only the sense of self that relates to being a who.
Q: I understand. What am I is more than who am I. Who am I is attached to the self; what am I is … that’s the direction.
John: What you really are has no sense of individuality, no sense of self.
Q: But it has qualities, you say. Openness, it’s a quality of what am I?
John: All of these qualities such as openness and softness are attributes of being. They are not attributes of the self.
Q: When you are in the state of being, wow! It’s like a state free of questioning, free of searching, free of all.
John: Way deeper than that. Being has no relationship to thought, feeling, will or emotion. It doesn’t even relate that way; it’s the self that relates that way, and even more than that, the personality.
Q: You mean the personality is gone.
John: The personality is even more identified with a who than the self. The personality is the outward who. The self is the inward sense of who. Being has nothing to do with either, but being can flow in a who. What restricts that flow is when you, awareness, are identified with the who.
Q: It’s a very gentle observation. I understand. What language is the being? It’s without a language; it’s just there.
John: And it flows and it streams.
Q: Not from you.
John: Not from any sense of self, but it is you. What you really are is a flow of being.
Q: My body is, is a fiction. This body is fiction.
John: Yes and no. Your body is a fiction if you have stories about your body. That means you’re caught in your body, so you create a fiction in your experience of your body. But when you are gentled and quieted within, your body is not a fiction. Your body is actual, it exists, but it’s not you. It’s a form that you are in.
Q: Can I get out of this form still in this life?
John: Very lightly, yes. In fact you do each time you reach the tipping point to sleep. When you lie down to go to sleep, as you near sleep, your whole sense of body, and mind, emotion, feeling and will, your self, passes away. Your entire past passes away. As you reach the tipping point to sleep, not sleep itself but right before it, you are no longer a who. You are openness, softness. Concerning your self, you are still. You lose your relationship to your self; you lose your relationship to your past, to life, all of life that you experience in your day, your relationships, and what remains is just you.
Q: Can this moment be expanded to all of the day, to all of my awakening hours, this moment, when my self is passed away, my past. Can it be expanded to all hours of the day? Can I live it like this? Live life like this?
Q: It’s possible to be free of the self?
John: It’s extremely possible but it’s highly conditional. If you buy into your self just because of what you are thinking, what you are feeling, what emotions and will you have, then the possibility of being what you really are in your self, in the midst of your self, is gone because you are sold out to what you are thinking, what you are feeling, what you want. Your emotions rule, so you are lost in your self.
To be what you really are in the midst of your self, in the midst of your day, is for you to be the same quality that you are when you reach the tipping point to sleep, which is free of all self, all life, all thought, feeling, will and emotion, and what you are is a flow of being. Be that in all of your day and then you are real. If you’re not being that in your day, you are not real; you’re lost to your sense of self. That sense of self isn’t real. Your self is actual, it exists. Your body is actual, it exists. It isn’t real; it only exists. Your self is able to become real. It’s able to reflect you, but only if you are being the same as the tipping point to sleep in the midst of your self. That doesn’t mean that you are sleepy in your self; it means that you are openness and softness regardless of your thinking, your feeling, your will and your emotions. As you are being what you really are in the midst of your self, your self becomes the same as you. Your self transforms by virtue of you being what you really are in the midst of your self as it is.
Q: Is there change in the nervous system, when I was fooling for the self, when I believed that I am the self; my whole nervous system, my cognitive – I don’t know how to say it – there is a shift when I started to live like you said the tipping point; when it expands through the day or through moments, when I succeed to not identify with the self, this shift changes my nervous system, my feeling in my body.
John: Yes. Extremely.
Q: Okay, I’m not losing it. Okay!
John: Even the difference in your nervous system, when you drop deeper within than your self, that first depth is you dropping into your heart, so when you shift from being your self to just being gentled and quieted in your heart, your whole nervous system shifts. Your whole sense of thinking and feeling changes to reflect what you are being in your body. As soon as you drop down into your heart, your whole sense of reality, if you’ll notice, changes. How you see you, how you feel, shifts. How you see others shifts, how you see nature shifts. What it is that sees, changes when you’re in your heart and when you’re in your self.
And you can drop even deeper within than your heart. Your heart is the doorway to your being. When you drop deeper within than your heart, there’s another shift. It’s subtler and yet much bigger than the shift into your heart. When you shift into your being, all sense of identity is gone. You have no sense of time, of space and of self, so your sense of reality is completely different than when you’re in your self. Your sense of reality, from within your self, isn’t real. Your sense of reality begins to be real when you’re quieted in your heart. And the sense of reality greatly expands when you’re shifted into your being.
Q: This is the purpose of all of this creation? This is what redemption is? This is what they say, you know, redemption, salvation, this is the purpose? This is what we came to do?
John: Not redemption, not salvation. Redemption and salvation begin after you have separated from what you really are, if you are indeed returning within. In having sold out to your self, you can be redeemed of your separation by being gentled and quieted in your heart, and living from that. Then you are redeeming your self, and you are being saved from your sense of self.
Q: Salvation, no?
Q: And this is the only purpose that there is to do in this life, in this creation, in all of history? This is the main thing, yes?
John: Not redemption or salvation; the real thing is what you really are. You came here to be what you really are in the midst of form that isn’t yet like you. The form that you come into is genetic; it’s passed down to you from your ancestors. Your genetics are a composite of what all of your ancestors have been. Whether what they have been was illusory and false or in some way real and true is all there in your genetics.
When you come into this body, you come into a physical self, personality package that has nothing to do with you, and you’ve come here to be what you really are in the midst of that packaging. And as you are being what you really are, being real, the package opens, softens, shifts, changes, transforms, and becomes just like you.
Q: The genetics also change.
Q: And if I make a child, I pass to him the new genetics?
Q: If my ancestors didn’t fulfill their option of doing this, it’s like a – how do you say? – chain, that I am in this chain and I can change backwards. I can change it?
John: Yes, but not you as an identity. If you have any personal agenda, any self, sense of self agenda to make that change, you contribute to what isn’t real.
Q: Yes, I understand; this is, we talked about the trap, last time. I understand. Is this world going to, is there a big purpose to this whole world that humanity is going to change something and this world, as it is, is going to disappear?
John: Ultimately, this world as it is will disappear. This world isn’t real. It’s actual but not real. And the actuality of the world is all distorted.
Q: In purpose. It’s built this way. It’s like from the early, from the first creation ‘til the end of all creation, it’s fixed this way.
John: Yes. Not ‘til the end but so far, yes. The world isn’t going to change without a majority of all those who are in it returning to being what they really are in the midst of their genetics, their body, their self, their personality, and life at any personal cos. And the world will shift. The world does not shift by doing good. That just puts a nicer feeling, nicer looking skin over the whole world. It isn’t real. The world shifts only by those who are in it returning to being what they really are, and the who in all of it dissolves. The world changes.
Q: It’s like in other words, is to step aside and let it do its thing in me. In other words, to understand what is softening and …
John: That is you in your sense of self, you in your self absolutely unconditionally surrendering.
Q: To what there is in me?
John: To your deepest heart and not stopping there: surrendering to your being. The who surrendering to the what is the dissolving of the who.
Q: Can I say the who is the ego? It’s okay to say like this?
Q: It’s the same or in the mind is the who? It’s okay to …? No.
John: (Shake head, no.) What you really are, aflow in your mind, transforms the mind from a who to a what. The mind is a who only if you are being a who in your thinking. A what – being – put within the mind will think, without being that mind.
Q: I’m sorry, I lost the…
John: Being aflow in a mind will not be a who. Being aflow in mind is openness and softness, beingness thinking. It is so not the same as a sense of self, in mind, thinking.
Q: It’s like the mind is neutral.
John: Yes. And it will turn into whatever you are being it, whether that’s illusory and false or real and true. The same with feeling, emotions and will. They all reflect and will turn into what you are being in them.
It’s the same with your brain and the universe. The universe, your brain, your genetics, all help you regardless of your orientation as awareness. If what you are being is illusory and false, all of existence, the universe, your brain, your self, helps you, will change to reflect what you’re being in it. It makes no difference if what you are being is illusory or real; it will all help what you are being.
Q: What force within me does that? There has to be some sort of awakening of something to catch that I am like this or like that. What is this force, what is this part?
Q: Is honesty growing or being awake?
John: It can grow but that’s only if you don’t want it to be instant; if you protect from instant core honesty, but you’re open to what’s real, then you’ll grow in depths of honesty to what you really are within. And you engage a path and process. So there’s measures of realness in that, but overall it’s not real; it’s mixed.
Q: Where is honesty in me; where is this, what is honesty?
John: Having no bias.
Q: Sorry. What is bias?
John: No personalized agenda, no personalized holding together of choice. Honesty is awareness, absolutely relaxed. When you are honest to the core you are, as awareness, integral to the core from within your core. You can be honest on the surface as a personality without being honest in your self. As awareness you can be honest to your self, you can be honest to your thinking, your feeling, your will and your emotions but not be honest to your heart. As awareness, you’re able to be honest to the surface of your heart but not be honest to your deepest heart. Awareness is able to fragment. It’s able to be split. Awareness pure is awareness still, awareness relaxed, regardless of what is experienced in the self, in the body, and in life, in all pressure.
Q: Me being not honest is trying to protect something.
Q: It comes from pain, resisting pain or something like this. It’s like a mechanism of defense.
John: It comes from buying into the perceived gain, and perceived loss. Dishonesty arises from awareness orienting to gain and loss. From there comes fear and defense.
Q: Gain and loss of what?
John: Anything that affects one’s sense of self. The gain of enjoyment and pleasure. The loss of enjoyment and pleasure. The gain of control through thought, feeling, will and emotion, and the perceived loss of control, loss of power, in formulating thought, feeling, will and emotion. The gain of personal power and the loss of personal power.
Q: When this began to, did I come with it into the world from within my genes?
John: You didn’t come with it; your genetics are full of it. Your genetics are corrupted. You were not corrupted when you came into your corrupted genetics. You were clean; your genetics were distorted and not clean.
Q: Is this the feeling of blame, like self-blame or something like this? Like I make a scene, scenes. Is this where they come from? The blame, and like “I’m not good?” You understand what I’m asking?
John: It comes from you’re genetics, it does not come from you. When you start to entertain blame you are already lost to your self and to your genetics. You have lost not what you really are, but you’ve lost being what you really are. What you really are is still there. It’s just all covered up, and you will have a defense to what you really are because being what you really are is going to be the loss of your whole sense of self.
Q: In which point did it happen, did it occur? When I was a child, this me mixed with my genes, when did that happen?
John: As soon as your eyes started to change.
Q: My eyes? When this happened?
John: When that occurred your eyes changed and reflected the change, reflected the difference. When you look into a newborn baby’s eye, you do not see humanness. You don’t see a self. You don’t see a personality. You don’t see a life. What you see, from the perspective of your self, if you’re really seeing it, what you see is something that’s alien to your whole self and life. It’s unrelatable. And for many, when you really see that, it can be really intimidating, because it’s so foreign, so deep, so not like people. There, the body reflects what’s being in it. It’s a being seeing through eyes, and it shows. As soon as there’s an identification with thought and feeling, will and emotion, the eyes instantly reflect that change.
Q: This point, why and what makes it do the negative shift? To mix with the genetics? What makes it do this mix?
John: False belief.
Q: Where? Where?
John: In awareness. Awareness believing itself. Awareness believing the self that it’s in. Awareness believing thought, feeling, will and emotion to be what it is, so the I forms. It’s a false I.
John: Why? Because it can. Why? Because awareness is that powerful. Awareness is able to split. It’s able to fragment; it has that astonishing power.
Q: Is this the story of falling from heaven? It’s equal to the idea that God threw out of heaven?
John: It’s a good metaphor.
Q: It’s a good metaphor. And return to heaven is the process of what we talk about, yeah? It’s like returning to heaven. It’s also a good metaphor?
Q: Okay. Yeah.
John: But within the use of the metaphor, your return to heaven, in your return to heaven, you will experience being threatened with hell. All hell will start to break loose, because hell is there to defend your whole sense of self and to protect you from being nobody and nothing. Hell protects the who from turning back into a what.
Q: If all hell breaks loose, in my experience…
John: It’s all illusory, but it’s actual.
Q: Yeah, it’s actual.
John: It has form. It has thought form, feeling form, emotional form, will form, physical form, nervous system form. It’s all actual, but it’s not real. The real is in what you really are; if you’re not being it, it’s not there in your self. Your self then covers it all up and protects against it.
Q: So the line of work, the tools of working is softening, accepting what there is, not believing it, but let it be. Yeah?
John: Don’t underestimate your power, your power to be split, your power as awareness to be fragmented; you are able, as awareness, to incorporate fundamental truths to further your sense of self. So then you can easily be “the one who opens,” “the one who is softening.” You can build an identity as being one who opens and softens. It’s not real; it’s a counterfeit of the real.
Q: This I understand. But the movement has to be real movement of softening. This is the trap we talk about. I understand it very well. I don’t, I’m working on it, you know. I didn’t accomplish, but I understand this.
John: If you’re working on it, you will develop a spiritual self identity.
Q: It’s hard in words to express what I mean. So it can be what you say and it can be something else. My intention is what you say. I see what you mean. It’s my intention too. I don’t do nothing. I can’t work on nothing. I let it. This is my question to you, too: something within me allows it. I participate in the work? I don’t do nothing.
John: As you participate in it, it takes you.
Q: Yeah this what I mean, by doing work.
Q: That’s the work that should be done if you will?
Q: Another question please? Just putting the word, the true meaning or maybe the idea of a messiah, is it a force, or is it the force that makes the way possible or pulls you?
John: From within a self identity, yes. A self identity realizing that it is in bondage to itself may easily look for a messiah, or relate to a messiah: someone else that will do it for you, someone who will save you, and that’s not real.
Q: I didn’t mean it that way. I meant it by, not something else outside of me but the force that makes within me.
Q: This is the idea I’m talking about.
John: Then what you really are is messianic, a messiah that you’ll defend your self against. Anyone who’s being what they really are, like what you see in the innocence of a small child, there you can see the messiah live because they’re still being, in measure, what they really are.
Q: It’s also in the cat and dog.
Q: There isn’t any separation from the being.
Q: But we came to experience separation, and then, if we make it, if we come back to the being…
John: But don’t go buying a messiah – a dog!
Q: Not for me! I learned some methods and I want to relate it to what you say, because it’s the same purpose of all of the methods to take you to the same place. But the meaning, the interpretation of the words, of the – I don’t have the words – the interpretation got lost on the way and this is all the traps there is.
Q: People don’t understand what the prophets said to us, what they tried to teach us.
John: Parents don’t understand little children; they just love them, but they don’t understand them. An identity can’t understand the innocence of a child, but loves it.
Q: And in this love there is a connection.
Q: It doesn’t have to be understood, but the connection is…
John: That connectivity forms a bond; it’s a bond of being. The self bond is not real but it’s actual. The being bond is real and the self protects that bond from actualizing in life.
Q: Yeah. This is the “war” between light and darkness. But it all comes from one source.
John: It’s awareness that’s responsible for all of it. No one is to blame and nothing outside of awareness is to blame. Your ancestors are not to blame because you are more than your genetics, your body, your self, your mind, your brain.
Q: Sorry about this, but is awareness what they call god?
Q: Is there any point of talking about god?
John: Not really.
Q: It’s an idea.
John: The talk around it engages mass genetics. It can very lightly touch into the real but that is invariably taken over by what is genetic. It’s taken over by the idea that you have in your sense of self, and what that idea offers or threatens of your sense of self. All of that is not real.
Q: But as a metaphor? Awareness is not like god as a metaphor?
Q: No. It’s beyond god, can I say?
John: It’s a derivative of, comes from.
Q: Awareness comes of god or the opposite, god comes of awareness?
John: Awareness doesn’t come from awareness; awareness comes from what is before awareness.
Q: Is there something before?
Q: Can you show me, please?
John: Consciousness is before awareness. Consciousness and pure awareness are not the same. Pure awareness comes from consciousness. Consciousness can move awareness. Consciousness is also not from itself; it comes from something deeper. It comes from what is before. Before consciousness is spirit. Spirit moves consciousness, infills it. Consciousness moves awareness, infills it.
Q: What fills spirit?
John: What comes from before.
Q: Is there a name for it?
John: I won’t say. It isn’t relevant at this point.
Q: Can you show me without saying or is it too unrelevant to me?
John: Bye for now.