The Art of Non-Conceptual Knowing

by meditative - December 10th, 2014

Transcending our “storylines” and all of our incessant thinking, we rest in the awareness of knowing itself- and not knowing. In this process of simply breathing and resting in our awareness, we give ourselves over to all of our senses- and pull away from the patterns of our relentless habituation- where we often get caught up and then lost in- thinking the content is what is most important, rather than the awareness within which the content of our minds can unfold. It is in the emptiness or spaciousness of our awareness where fullness can arise- it is this invisible, intangible “space” within which discrete events can emerge and unfold- a “space” where there is interconnectedness to everything.

Every time we become self-absorbed, we get better at becoming self-absorbed- practice does make perfect– but under the guise of habituation it can be harmful to our well-being- and to the very nature of what makes us truly “whole” and authentic. Lack of awareness is what entangles us… and the more we allow ourselves to remain unconscious to our way of being- the increasing difficulty there will be in disentangling ourselves later in life.

Our “natural intelligence” (e.g. sensory, bodily, intuitive) draws upon our non-conceptual knowing– and the spontaneity of our free attention and open awareness, as well as the focused and sustained quality of our mind- samadhi. Non-conceptual knowing or awareness is student, teacher, and the lesson. Mind is ‘knower’ and knowing in the realm of awareness- the intrinsic capacity to know any and all objects of attention in any and every moment- as they are, beyond mere conceptual knowing- where labeling and meaning are derived through streams of thought.

… Mindfulness is the knowing quality of awareness.

The mind’s habits obscure the light we all contain. By nature, this “light” seeks to aim and illuminate our experiences. It is the proliferation of our self-constructed images, thoughts, stories, and feelings that limit what is always present. We are our own obstacle to life’s direct & experiential fulfillment.

…We think we know only to know what we think.

We can only radiate what is not obscured. Fitness of mind may arise from sustaining open awareness moment to moment. The more we practice the art of non-conceptual knowing, the more self-sustaining it becomes. It knows because we inherently know. To rest effortlessly in awareness, we nourish the intention to be nonjudgmentally present with whatever unfolds.

Free attention is the mind’s muscle to work openly and directly with our experiences- it’s what some refer to as relaxed readiness. In our practice both formally and informally, we cultivate, refine, and deepen our capacity to pay attention and to dwell in present-moment awareness. The less we think and ruminate, the more we come to know. It is through awareness where we begin to embrace and embody “self-knowing”- “mind essence”- or “sentience”- a non-conceptual process, which is integrally part of the larger fabric of (karmic) causes and events…