By David Ellzey, Author, Teacher, Transformational Entertainer
Are practices necessary to realize the Self? Here I will share a few thoughts as to why the answer is both yes and no – and why The Sedona Method is one practice that is useful, when the answer is yes.
First, let me start with why the answer is “no.” The Absolute Self needs nothing. It needs no practice, no time passage, or journey. It is the timeless source and substance of all. This includes your totality as you read these words and also your perception that there is anything to gain from this article. The great Indian sage, Ramana Mararshi said, “Everything, whether you call it the world or maya, or lila, or sakti, must be within the Self and not apart from it…” If this is the case, then we, as Self, lack nothing and need nothing, including a practice, to be that which we already are. So is practice necessary for the Self to be realized? For the Self? No. Then for whom?
We are the Absolute and yet somehow in this dream we have forgotten our true nature and believed we are separate from the All. Why? That is a longer article, but for now suffice it to say that blessedly we are driven by an innate urge to remember, but until we do, we are left perceiving separation from our own essential being. Thus, as long as this is our perception, the answer is yes, a practice or inquiry is useful to dismantle the illusion of separation.
In the Jewish tradition there is a saying, “Nature is the garment of God.” All of nature and existence is a veil that thinly masks the infinite. A practice can help pierce that veil.
Additionally, since believing in separation is the common state of humanity with all the ensuing ills that come from it, then it follows that remembering our oneness might be useful for sustaining our fragile planet. So do we need a practice? In this scenario, it seems so. From another angle, a dear friend and teacher, Francis Lucille, once had an answer to the question of, “If we are the Self, why do we need any practice?” With a glimmer in his eye, he responded, “Just to keep you out of trouble.”
So what is The Sedona Method (TSM) and why is it useful as a practice? It fulfills two fundamental needs. One, when you feel stuck in emotions or blinded by stories, it offers a simple series of questions to reawaken your awareness that stories and emotions exist but are not the totality of who you are. Ultimately, it invites you to consider that who you truly are is beyond all techniques. When taught in its highest form, TSM is cognitive first with the path leading to beyond cognition, beyond thought, beyond all technique, to you as awake presence in which all techniques come and go. One of its strengths is integrating this understanding into daily life.
To be clear, with The Sedona Method, thoughts and emotions are welcomed fully, and in this process they become the portal to recognizing the true substance of what they and we are, unbounded consciousness itself. Found in the welcoming process is a life-changing sense of the healing and non-judgmental love of pure presence. Rumi says, “Love has pierced the heart of every lover.” In this case – the lover who yearns for truth.
As a mentor and teacher I am forever honored to witness people, sometimes for the first time, accept their humanity without judgment. This in itself can be a profound and deep healing, a transformative moment of the unconditional loving presence that we are.
On my personal journey this method gave me a safe and empowered way to unconditionally process my suppressed boyhood anger. In my humanness, as some feelings still come and go yet with less investment, there is an unshakable sense of the limitless One within and behind all.
In the end, both the yes and the no are important to include in this answer of whether a practice is needed. As the Infinite that lacks nothing – we need no practice. As the human seeking relief from our lonely, though illusory, sense of separation, we may need a path or practice to remember what we innately know, the vast undivided reality of our being. Whether one’s practice includes The Sedona Method, meditation, yoga, or sitting with teachers of Zen or Advaita, if it ultimately points you to see beyond its own form to the source of all forms, it is a special practice indeed.
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