The Rightful King

‘The Crown’ – Odilon Redon, 1910 – WikiArt


A thought never comes alone. It appears with a container attached to it. But unfortunately, in our most habitual way to relate to experience, this container is felt to be the negligible part. And the same applies to feelings. Every appearance in the mind comes wrapped up with something that supports it. But that support is unseen, ignored, and the fleeting appearance is too often upgraded as being mind itself. Yet I think that the opposite is truer. That thought is the negligible, feeling is the dispensable. Not that they should be neglected. Far from it. For they are pointers. They are blooming flowers brought to our attention for a mission. They are flagging a message to our conscience. One that says, we — thoughts and feelings — are the negligible. We are not mind, but only temporary appearances in the mind. The mind is what matters. The container matters the most. That which we have taken to be secondary, unimportant, negligible — and that we have as a result pushed in the background — is our innermost reality. It is what needs to be raised in and as the foreground. This is the one and only entity there is, far before — and above — any fluttering thoughts or feelings which, to the mind that supports them, are no more than waves on the surface of an ocean. The container — this vast, indomitable expanse — wants to be explored, visited, admired. Cease taking a few thoughts and feelings to be you. They are not you. They only express the parts of you that are blind, unconscious, indolent. By emphasising them, we neglect all that is around them, behind them, beyond them. All that is supporting them, allowing them to be. Every objective appearance is secondary to that unmatchable presence, to whom even the body is a negligible. How could a few unruly servants think that they are the King, that they run the kingdom in place of the rightful King? But be careful here. Don’t neglect any of these unruly servants. Only remind them of their right place and rank. Invite them at your table. Make them see and understand where lies their interest. By thinking they are themselves little kings and queens, they miss an opportunity to surrender to the one who gives them food and lodging. Consciousness is our rightful King. Only give Him allegiance and contemplate His loving and all encompassing nature. He will make you to His likeness, and will send you back to life with a crown on your head. So be yourself the very subject of this majestic presence. Let Her crown you with Her very crown. And you’re not Her only subject, for everything in the kingdom of experience is Hers. Every house, every being, every tree, every expansive sea, every reflection of the sun on every crested wave, are Her subjects. And every subject subjects only one thing: Herself. So let yourself be the ultimate subject. The one that never bows to any object. Many objective appearances will mistakenly think to be subjects, but never will be, never can be. For this is a kingdom of one subject only. Nobody is meant to take the lead, except that which is the rightful King. 



Text by Alain Joly

Painting by Odilon Redon (1840-1916)



Odilon Redon (Wikipedia) 


Blown Out

We continue our series of texts or essays on different subjects of spiritual interest. The question here is about ‘having a spiritual experience’, and delving into the nature of what is called ‘awakening’…


There is a safe place in view of all, but difficult of approach,
where there is no old age nor death, no pain nor disease.
It is what is called nirvāṇa, or freedom from pain, or perfection;
it is the safe, happy, and quiet place which the great sages reach.
That is the eternal place, in view of all, but difficult of approach.

~ Uttaradhyana Sutra, 81-4 (Buddhism)


Nothing much, really. Something just like peeking out of the window. But let’s not be overly disdainful, for this can bend the course of a life and change it in a profound way. To have a spiritual experience is a blessing, a call, maybe a rehearsal for the final dissolution. It leaves you puzzled, wanting to understand, and above all, searching to have it again in the future. It can be just a flavour suddenly lingering at the back of your mind, or a spectacular awakening, or anything in between. In all cases, you meet something new, that is outside any known experience, and yet has a familiar flame, like an old forgotten memory. Above all, peace, love, and happiness are attached to it. It is the DNA of any genuine experience, its vital core, and what makes it so desirable. After all, do we want anything in life but a lasting happiness? It can last for seconds, minutes, or days. It comes as a grace, unexpected, uninvited. One important characteristic is that it fades away, finally disappears. Otherwise we wouldn’t call it an ‘experience’. A spiritual experience is an awakening that failed.

An essay to delve into the nature of Awakening (READ MORE…)


The Secret

Pierre Bonnard

There is a secret. Do you want to hear it?… So come closer, because like all secrets, it must be whispered. We mustn’t scare anyone.

Are you ready? Here it is: The world is not as it was presented to you. You have been fooled. There is a misundestanding.

It is the best kept secret in the universe. Why? Simply because it is not hidden. Or rather, it is hidden in view of all, in full light. Every religion has tried to conquer it and has failed. Not by lack of believing, as they would like us to think, but by excess of belief, of fascination.

Only the most mystical of their representatives, the most courageous, the most eager to know the truth beyond all other considerations, have approached it, discovered it intimately. Because this secret requires everything, it wants the whole of you. It won’t let you know it from a distance. It wants a total union, therefore a sacrifice.

So, are you ready?

Look carefully. Become impregnated with consciousness, feel it, be ‘it’, to the exclusion of all that you have been taught about yourself. After all, do you really believe that you are your body, to which you gave a name? Do you really think that you have an age, that your thoughts describe you, model you? Do you believe yourself to be so small, so narrow? Is your life just a series of experiences that happen to you, and that will make you either beautiful or stupid, mediocre or refined?

Look again. Are you not experience itself, are you not the world? Are you not absent to the presence of the world? And therefore immense, infinite, eternal, your body marrying the outlines, the confines of the universe? Are you not the very vessel, the One of all things, of which you would be both a part and the totality?

Look. Observe.

The world is not separate from you, doesn’t stand at a distance, and you are not a small thing lost, cut off from everything. You are the experience itself, without any separation between a body, a mind, that would be yourself, and the rest of life and the world that would impose its experience on you. There is only experience, and that is ‘you’.

You are everything, the entirety of what exists. One piece. Nothing that exists is foreign to you. The world is you. Do you hear it? You are the world. Nothing is foreign to you. Nothing that would not be ‘you’. You are your own constituent, and all that, the world, is you! Do you hear it?

That is the secret, God, Love, Life, Death.

It is you !

You are that…



Text by Alain Joly



Other articles from the same category ‘Shreds of Infinity



The ghost in the system

Here is a reminder inspired from the words of Rupert Spira. I love this expression from Rupert: a ‘ghost in the system’, because it gives a vivid image of a reality that is so easily overlooked. It is necessary and terribly efficient to look into these matters for ourselves. This is why I like to share here the parts of a spiritual teaching that sounds like ‘something to do’, something to experiment and verify for ourselves:

During the day, doing whatever you do, keep on searching for the ruthless person or entity you have been working for frantically, check that it ever existed, look if it is there at all, if you are not the zealous servant of an illusory master who actually never ever existed… Is there anybody there, an entity to whom all this is happening?… Enquire by looking within…


Further exploring on the subject:

You know so many things about yourself,
but the knower you do not know.
Find out who you are, the knower of the known.
So far, you took the mind for the knower,
but it is just not so. Look within diligently.

~ Nisargadatta Maharaj


All we know is experience but there is no independent ‘we’ or ‘I’ that knows experience. There is just experience or experiencing. And experiencing is not inherently divided into one part that experiences and another part that is experienced. From the point of view of experience, which is the only real point of view, experiencing is too intimately one with itself to know itself as ‘something,’ such as a body, mind or world.
~ Rupert Spira


The self that we seem to have become as a result of the forgetting or veiling of our essential being is an imaginary one. It is in fact a thought, not an entity or a self, that has caused this exclusive association of our self with an object of the body and mind.
~ Rupert Spira




– ‘Presence’, Vol. I & II – by Rupert Spira (Non-Duality Press)
– ‘I Am That‘ – by Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj (Non-Duality Press)

Rupert Spira
Nisargadatta Maharaj (Wikipedia)

Fleeing to God (other pointers from the blog)
Khetwadi Lane (Homage to Nisargadatta Maharaj)