What I Don’t Know Could Fill A Blog

From the front lines of enlightenment, this reporter is experiencing artillery fire in the form of naysayers and skeptics, along with curious questions and well wishes. Telling my story so far is a bit like being a stand-up comedy act, where half the crowd is laughing with me and the other half, laughing at me. From the not-Lori that is here, I too am laughing with me and at me.

So now for my disarming disclaimer: I know nothing. I am simply reporting the unfolding of my awakening experience, not purporting to proclaim an ultimate destination. In fact I’ve never known less in my life. To say I know nothing and everything might be the more apt line. Because from the awake place there is a deep appreciation for paradox, an odd ability to embrace duality in a new way. The skeptics then are as welcome as the believers of my words in a way the Lori personality would not have been copacetic with. There is no “me” here that needs to convince nor is there a me here that takes offence when met by criticism.

So, back to I-Know-Nothing, which I am considering as my new spiritual name (with Yaba-Daba-Do a close second contender). Even as I am aware that I know nothing, I have come up with some disoveries about the limits of language.

One finding is that even though Truth can piggy back on words, it’s like a camel trying to carry the sun on its back. The brilliant inferno of Truth does not convey well on the mere cargo beast that words are meant to be. Historically, language developed for barter, trade, treaties and survival. It was never constructed as a delivery system for enlightenment. In this way, some of my words have moved readers to tears and some to anger and others to indifference. All this from mere words, limping along in an effort to convey the magnitude of Truth.

Some of the most ardent feedback to my words has come from self-proclaimed already-awakened ones, some of whom have lobbed “you don’t have a clue” material at me, along with gloomy forecasts like “just wait until you come down from this spiritual high, sucker.” Which of course, makes me laugh, because I’m not attached to experiencing highs or lows, I am simply here.

There seem to be a few folk who tell me they woke up, had a beautiful flight, and crash-landed. If that happens here, the crash back to mind and identification, I will report it. I promise. Or others who foretell I will experience the “ordeal” of post enlightenment integration. But so far, almost seven weeks later, I remain vast and still, with intermittent periods of delight. I will let you know when and how that changes.

So here’s a proposition. Don’t believe anything I tell you. Instead, in the spirit of play, I double dare you to find out the Truth for yourself. After all, what do you have to lose but your mind?

As Osho wrote, “Knowing means you open your eyes and you see. Knowledge means somebody else has opened his eyes and he has seen and he talks about it, and you simply go on gathering information. Knowing is possible only if your eyes are healed, then it is authentically your experience.”

So I invite you to have your own authentic experience. The next time you find yourself in an argument, ask yourself: What part of me is arguing back? Or the next time someone agrees with your view, and you feel good about that collusion, ask yourself: Who is happy here? Deep inquiry into that one persistant mind story of “If you are not for me, you are against me” can perhaps lead you from knowledge to knowing, from reading about my awakening to having your own.

Let me know what you find? Awareness is Here and Curious.

Lori Ann


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49 thoughts on “What I Don’t Know Could Fill A Blog

  1. karmiceraser

    Enjoying your “different from the norm” descriptions very much. Not coincidentally, I just finished reading Jan Frazier’s “When Fear Falls Away: The Story of a Sudden Awakening.” Her experience sounds much like yours and the time-frame of the book is, I think, across 18 months. Something about the two of you rings very true to me, the importance of “intent” over tallying up hours of focus time. Going to refer to myself in the third person for a few days and see what happens! Thanks.

  2. awarenessishere

    Beautifully said! Yes, and yes and yes. Enlightenment is nothing more than REALIZING what you have always been. I call it a Point of View shift, from the mind (a false but useful construct) and awareness (reality). Awakening is not a becoming, but a recognition of being.

    Thank you for the link.i will check it out.

  3. maurylee

    One thing for sure, Lori has started a lot of good discussion. This kind of sharing clarifies the issues, and thought it seems argumentative at times, it’s all love, obvious or in disguise. No one can predict that Lori will fall. Perhaps not.

    James Swartz has much to say about this on his blog, http://www.shiningworld.com. Awakening is multifaceted, and perhaps there is no final aha, as growth still happens after enlightenment. If you think of it as levels of consciousness as David Hawkins does, the argument goes away. At a certain level there is enlightenment, but there is progress, integration, deeper insight, even after enlightenment. We are, after all, Awareness, whether we know it or not, so the arguments are just butterfly wings flapping in the wind.

    Bless you Lori

  4. awarenessishere

    It’s flow and knowing as the moment arises. The arising of no-choice has led to an hundred fold increase in my pre-knowing (or psychic abilty) and to a beautiful trust in what appears to be a syncrhonistic web of perfect intelligence–which was there all along, yet unseen…and often resisted. Yet still, there are containers for flow. I realize a container is getting my daugther to school each morning. The flow and choiceless choice happens within that container. Yet there is a deeper flow that could perhaps, like a tidal wave, eradicate the need to be a functional mother. To date, the mother is here. The tender heart is here. Thanks for asking Sailor. Csn you share a bit about your journey? Lori Ann

    1. Sailor

      I’m about to turn 61 and have been seeking “Truth?” all my life. No one has ever asked
      me even once to share what it is that i’m really doing in life. Probably for the best as I am
      still feeling clueless to date. hehe. I’ve just lived the life of an average man as I puzzle
      the true nature of reality. Looks like I was allways intent on being somewhere/way other than actually being present. I think being present is uncomfortable because not knowing
      is an unsecure position thereby a fear based one better avoided.
      The ten bulls has been a light house beacon for me as well as Zen in the art of archery.
      The Northwest Foundation For A Course In Miracles has been supportive also.
      It is just that I’ve always believed that we don’t have to be afraid or suffer, that there
      is a way open to all that dries all tears. I’ve spent my life looking for it.
      I’m really glad you are happy.

  5. Sailor

    Dear Lori,
    Thanks again for your posts. I am courious, if you are in a state of one, are you making choices? Does one just flow with what is happening?
    Things are confusing if all is separate and choices have to be made.

  6. New Light Awakening

    Hello All of the Above… I read everything with great relish. Thank you! I am most decidedly Lisa, rather than not-Lisa, and am very interested in your comments. I happily await the day when I can speak from the not-Lisa position… hahaha! I LOVE it that this kind of exchange is available to me and everyone else who is so very very curious about awakening and all it entails.

    I salute you all and say YAY!

    Aloha, Lisa

  7. Rose

    The above “tennis match” is amusing–but I feel a little sad and somewhat cheated of precious time.
    However, I am not going to suggest a “remedy” lest I fall into the same trap!

    Love you, Lori!

    1. awarenessishere

      HI Rose:

      At risk of sounding therapeutic, that sadness or disappointment is a teacher (if you dive into it, that is), even as I know you are simply expressing a sentiment for less she-said/he said, and more here it is-ness. The gift of the tennis match can be the wtinessing of the duality game and the beauty of even from awakened states, it slips back in subtle forms. I remember reading recently of two gurus (one was a student who graduated to teacher) who spent a lot of time publically debating who was more enlightened. That really made me laugh, though I am sure it made some followers pissed off. Anyway, thank you for reading. Next post coming tomorrow is about Sex and Enlightenment. In Awareness, Lori-Ann

  8. awarenessishere

    Joel, you say again and again that “you are not awake, you just are” and waking up is simply the recognition of that basic Truth of being. Yes. Of course. And so the discrete turning point from realizing and not realizing is simply metahphored as “waking up”–because it works as an image that points to a clear before and afterness to this experience in so many ways–even yoganada parmahansa woke up to the exhortation to “behold your dreamless being, awake my child, awake!” Ganga-gi, Adyashanti and others tell the tale often of the one day they woke up–the turning point from self to recogntion of no self. So the question I have here, is what’s your problem? I keep feeling this is a fruitless semantic debate, rather than a real inquiry into the heart of a matter. Lori Ann

    1. Joel

      It may well be fruitless, but it is not at heart a semantic debate. Although I may not have anything to say to you, you have plenty to say to me, namely that I have stuck around too long trying to make a point there is neither an appetite for nor an opening. At least credit me with caring, even if you do not yet know about what and merely think it is having some kind of ‘problem’. Alright. Goodbye and good luck.

      1. awarenessishere

        Hey Joel—we started with my words at freestyle hitting you in a way that displeased and here it is again, this displeasure. I simply expressed a sense of the circularness of the awake debate. Not an attack on you or your caring. Lori Ann

      2. Joel

        I’m not displeased, Lori, nor was I with your comment at Freestyle. It is just like when I catch myself talking to a cat or a dog, I express myself but I know they don’t understand. I get it a lot with humans. Eventually I just get bored and give up. What more do you want me to say? I am actually quite straightforward. Like a mirror. When what passes before it goes, does it mind? If there is a pattern to be noticed in our interaction, consider it my gift to you.

  9. Joel

    It’s very easy to cling to any idea. Why bother?

    I didn’t say there wasn’t ‘an awakening’ or ‘no difference in experience’. There is difference in experience from moment to moment, but it is very arbitrary to accentuate one difference in experience over another difference in experience. It is all just change. Experience by its very nature is change. The unchanging remains as it was. ‘Awakening’ is an experience that has already passed. To imagine that one is ‘awakened’ is merely keeping a momento, making a trophy out of it. It is not actually so easy to cling to ideas such as ‘nothing has happened’, since something is happening all the time. But beyond that happening, what has happened? Nothing. In addition to this, the notion of ‘the time before’ and ‘the time after’ is on very shaky ground. If to ‘be awakened’ means that one constantly reifies ideas like these then it is even questionable just how awakened one is in one’s own terms in the first place.

    You are not ‘awake’, you just are. That you feel there was a time when you didn’t know or understand this is an illusion.

    I realise some ‘awakened’ folk are resistant to this idea. That very resistance is the wall that remains standing. In practice it goes away not so much by seeing through it as growing tired of maintaining an ‘awakened’ facade. Am I really pointing out a view I regard as better, or am I simply allowing you to see that you are holding a view you regard as better?

  10. Joel

    I take the view that any ‘fall’ from ‘awakening’ is an entirely good thing, since perpetual enthusing about anything is draining, either for oneself or those close by. Any warning about such a fall is not really to ‘prepare’ someone for the fading away of a mere state but rather a warning against reifying a state such that it is hard to actually let go of it. It is like painting oneself into a spiritual corner. I can’t think of many teachers or gurus who haven’t done that. Many are still there.

    Who cares about ‘awakening’ and ‘delusion’? Awakening is an inherently dualistic concept. One can only go on for so long paying it lip-service. If you see what you see, it’s not important what words you use. Fundamentally, all awakening is imagined. Would you believe that there are some who would find this an aggressive stance? That’s because ‘awakening’ is too tightly clung to. The ‘awakened’ should try letting go of what they think has happened, because actually nothing has happened.

    The idea of ‘permanent awakening’ is a misconception. This permanency was certainly there prior to an apparent awakening. It’s okay to enthuse about ‘awakening’, but one should be aware that it is no different to enthusing about anything. It’s ironic that people use the word ‘awakening’ to make a definite distinction, when what they have supposedly realised is that there is no distinction anywhere. So in what sense, exactly, have any of them ‘awoken’? What have they awoken to or from? Have they, perhaps,realised there is no illusion? How is this not an illusion? In what sense is not-Lori better than Lori? Isn’t it the case that not-Lori is in every way exactly the same as Lori?

    1. Sam Watts

      Isn’t it just as easy to cling to ideas like “nothing happened” and “there is no awakening”?

      I still think that even though one may realizing up awakening that everything has always been the way it is, and that there is no duality, etc. etc., there was a time when this wasn’t seen clearly, and then a time when it was. To say that there’s no difference in experience between the two seems disingenuous.

      It’s like the philosophical Pluralist who berates the holders of other philosophical positions for maintaining there point of view is the best. The Pluralist holds it over them that no philosophy is better than any other, and that anyone who thinks otherwise is… wrong? It doesn’t hold up, does it?

    2. awarenessishere

      Joel, you are nothing if not delightfully consistent. The term “awakening” is just that, a term. The experience that has occured here, in this form called Lori Ann, is that I simply have shifted point of view in a way that is as stark as changing from a first person narrative in a novel to omniscient narrator…along with the POV shift is a complete (for me anyway, though others may not have the same experience) loss of the mental/emotional self from which I used to operate from/navigate the world. With this shift, there is simply no rising up of emotional reactivity, or much emotion at all frankly. Annoying to those around me for sure, who are used to the dynamic of persona’s in a perpetual game of projecgtion, attack, blame and yes, shadow stuff. When one person just STOPs that, because the self that would engage is gone, it’s pretty dramatic if not traumatic. You would have to talk to my live-in partner Fergus, or daughter, to see that my inner experience of not-Lori shows up in the world as a peaceful, attentive, present person who simply is not the same humanly reactive Lori Ann that preceeded the “event” of this POV shift I am calling (along with the likes of Adyashanti, Ganga-ji and others) Awakening. I am not that good an actress to keep up a charade 24-7. This shift is profound. It is real. It is not arguable from here whether it is real and as for lasting, that remains to be seen. I would invite you to share your experience, because I can only gather that you must be flitering my experience through the history of your own? Please come forth and tell me a bed time story, of Joel’s encounter with no self, and the what next of it. In awareness, Lori Ann

      1. Joel

        The persona is a mask I can still wear, and the one wearing it is a persona too. ‘No self’ is just another name for ‘self’, always has been. I don’t doubt that you have embraced an experience as profound and real. That is obvious. All I am saying is that it is not the be-all and end-all that the likes of Adyashanti and Gangaji make it out to be. They are not authorities for me. Only me is an authority for me, and even then, who is who? I am talking about my own experience all the time. If you don’t wish to hear it, that’s fine. But who else would I be talking about? That I am drawn to comment on your apparent experience can only ever be a comment on my apparent experience. If I see you ‘owning’ your experience with a ferocity I think is unwise, that is precisely because I see myself doing the same. However, beyond this comment I am not in the slightest bit interested in your experience or mine. It passes. You, however, may find something to chew on, but it doesn’t matter if you don’t. This is all.

  11. New Light Awakening

    I am feeling some confusion here. Awakened ones can ‘dump’ on others, awakened or un? My idea has been that it just doesn’t happen, that it simply does not come up in those who are permanently awakened. So, I’m with Sam, it sounds defensive and odd to me, too.

    What’s up with this? Thanks!


    1. Sam Watts

      Lisa, it all depends on how one defines awakening. The term realization is often used in its place to clear up some important features of how awakening actually functions. Realization is seeing things as they are, and this can happen long before one’s unskillful habitual patterns are fully dismantled. So, there are those who really can see things the way they are, and still be reactive jerks on occasion. That’s why I, and many others, stress the importance of integration. In this view, being fully awakened does not mean achieving perfection by any worldly standard. Rather, having realized the Truth, one settles into a way of being human that aligns with the Truth. The result (i.e. Fruition) is not static. That’s how I see it, anyway.

    2. awarenessishere

      Hi Lisa, the guys have beat me to the punch. I am in line with Sam’s view, that shadow/projection does happen when the defensive self rises up, and in that case I question whether someone has perhaps had an awakened state that did not last in any demonstrable way–I have mentioned here before that I had mini awakenings in the years before now, where I experienced glimpses of no-self and vastness and being, beyond the finite self, and yet they faded and I was back to my mind and identification with that mind.. I do not know what to make of people who have declared to be awake and yet behave in emotionally reactive, victim-like or blaming ways, which I have some experience of witnessing with acquaintences who say they are “awake” and yet are as my daughter would say, EMO. ANyway, I will just keep reporting from my own frontier and we will see what happens. If I “fall from grace” I promise to tell it like it is. Thanks for reading Lisa! Lori ANN

  12. Sam Watts

    There are a number of reasons why some people who have been awake for a long time caution the newly awakened about the seemingly inevitable “fall from grace” that occurs sometime later.

    I’m one that likes to provide this warning because it was not given to me directly. I wasn’t prepared for it, and didn’t realize it was something that happened until it had already begun. I know others who were well aware of the possibility, and they seemed to suffer less when the fall began, and their transition into a more integrated and embodied awakening was less painful. Jack Kornfield wrote the book After the Ecstasy, the Laundry, for this very reason. (If you haven’t read it yet, you should. It’s beautiful, gentle, and wise, just like he is).

    There are others who seem to share this information with more of an aggressive energy. They say, “Hey, Dummy – don’t get too comfortable up there. You’re going to crash, and then you’re going to feel like an ass for proclaiming your ‘attainment’ with so much exuberance.” I can only speculate why they respond in this way. It actually comes off as defensive, which is odd. It’s almost as if they feel embarrassed about having gone through an experience of waking up and falling, but rather than dealing with their own embarrassment (i.e. “How could I have been so stupid?”), they project it onto the newly awakened and say, “How could you be so stupid?!”

    In other words, I think a lot of folks are attacking their shadow, which is cast on the newly awakened much like Don Qixote made monsters out of windmills. I’m not making fun of anyone by saying this. We all have our shadow stuff. But I think it would be worthwhile for those who find themselves reacting defensively to claims of awakening to look into what’s fueling it. It’s not easy, but it’s possible.

    I’m not worried about you, Lori. You seem well aware of the fact that things change. That’s part of what helped you to wake up.

    1. awarenessishere

      Hi Sam! So great to hear your voice here. I will read the Kornfeld book, thank you. Here is something interesting and curiously tidy in its sychronicity. I have been listening to the many views from ardent warnings of the “fall” to your more balanced stance of integration and just basically taking it in and not-knowing how it might or might not apply to my own wake up. Last night a facebook friend sent me link to an online satsang with a guru from India (bhagwan, founder of the Oneness movement with wife Amma). In it he says in response to a question, that before a person wakes up for good (an abiding awakening) they experience “awakened states.” He intimates that these states do not last because they are brain biochemical, where as an awakening is a change in brain physiology…but he encourages people to seek the awakened states through whatever means, because they do lead to the awakening. I had many life experiences through a kundalini yoga practice, and later, tantra, of awakened states–the longest lastest two to three weeks before fading gradually to back from inner peace to turmoil. Yet none of these awakened states had the vastness/emptiness and pure delight I am experiencing (or the not-I is experiencing). Also new is these moments that arise where I am lost in the “I am that” and my heart flies open, and a kind of bliss rises up. I am that–tree. Eagle. Other person. Does this happen to you? I am so curious about all of it! Thanks for reading Sam. In Awareness, Lori Ann

      1. Joel

        Awakening as a change in brain physiology misses that the brain is an object arising to awareness that has no real existence. Kalki Bhagavan though is clearly a fake with nothing to say but repeated and worthless generalisms.

      2. Sam Watts

        I don’t doubt that there are neurological correlates to awakening. There are neurological correlates to all sensory experience. But you are not your brain, and consciousness depends upon the whole physical organism and its environment. I think neuropsychological research is beneficial, and may also provide useful information about certain aspects of awakening, but I think it’s a HUGE mistake to reduce experience to brain, as if awakening were merely a brain event. Not possible.

      3. awarenessishere

        HI Joel and Sam. The brain is a perceptual machine, some say a quantum machine, and so it does play a role in how we sift and experience incoming raw data. And there is ample historical writing about the importance of the pineal gland to awakened states etc. But it’s a chick and egg discussion that will not be resolved by the likes of this blogger…does the brain chemistry and maybe who knows, physiology, shift when the illusion of discrete self falls away? What has been measured, as you well know, is electrical activity in the brain changing in deep states of meditation. Anyhow. This direction of inquiry is all ideas. Not experiential. And leads to mental sound and fury, signifying nothing.

      4. Joel

        Yes, but what perceives the brain Lori? If I take DMT and have an amazing vision doubtless that vision was caused by a chemical reaction in the brain, or at least it is convenient to suppose so, but what perceives the vision just the same as what is regarded as not the vision was not caused by such a chemical reaction, it is what was there before the brain was one micron wide in your mother’s womb.

    2. Joel

      The trouble with this idea of ‘the shadow’ of Ken Wilbur’s is that it is a complete distraction into looking for reasons for behaviour in a mere persona instead of just considering that a criticism is valid, clear, and straightforward. A person who perceives that another is behaving defensively may as well just cut out the middleman and know that it is their own defensiveness they are witnessing. Whatever you see in others is what you see in yourself, but it is not a shadow it is simply what is the case. Wilbur is trying to be too clever, but must I, in order to point it out, also be too clever, or can I just say it and have that be valid, clear, and straightforward?

      1. Sam Watts

        I don’t follow Wilber all that closely, but I know he isn’t responsible for “the shadow” in concept or application. It started with Jung and worked its way into some Gestalt theory, all well before Ken Wilber’s work had even begun.

        Nevertheless, I never said that a message is rendered invalid based on the form of its delivery. The defensive, reactive way in which one may communicate their message is what seems to be indicative of unfinished, repressed, and/or denied aspects of one’s very Self. It makes sense to me that people react this way to that which is perceived as ‘other’. We don’t tend to lash out at that which we’ve opened up to and accepted, regardless of whether or not what we’re saying is true, at least in part.

  13. Sailor

    Dear Lori,
    Thanks so much for your sharing. It’s greatly encouraging and welocome.
    May I ask you to elaborate a bit on how your awakening is different as to your health
    and finances? Your relations with people.

    1. awarenessishere

      Good question. The body is going through changes that I would not have expected–my taste for certain things has changed. I am exercising less, eating more than ever, and meat has kind of just fallen away because it suddenly does not taste great. So I am leaning into vegetarianism, it seems. For now. Finances are fine. Creativity is flowing, and surging in fact, as so many words pour forth. My partner who live with me is a man named Fergus to has been a good sport, and has been moving gracefully with the fact that the woman he has known for three years is gone, and this new not-Lori is here. He calls me Awareness half the time. It’s a stark change for many of my friends, yet it has not caused havoc or endings…yet anyway. My 12 year daughter is having the experience as is Fergus of living with a person who no longer gets angry, upset, irritated, annoyed or grumpy. But they are also living with someone who no longer reacts to them, so that they are faced with a mirror for their own projections and attacks. That is creating more turbulence for my 12 year old, because mom is not reacting and the teen-mom duel is off. Yet, overall, she is happier around me lately. There is a natural falling away of what no longer fits in some groups I was a part of, for instance. And yet it has been gentle. Hope this answers your question. Lori Ann

  14. Ray Loewenau

    I had a “stream entry” experience in the 60’s on LSD. I was too immature to integrate it’s insights into my daily life and avoid inflation. Your experience resonates with my memory perfectly. I look forward to your future reports.

    1. awarenessishere

      Hello Ray. I am hearing from many people who have have experienced awakened states through psychelics…there is a difference between an awakened state and an awakening only in that the states do not last–this is my experience based too on many pre-awakening, mini-awakenings through a multi-year practice of Kundalini yoga and tantra. I look forward to your response as we go along.

  15. Onlylove, sandy

    Lori – enjoyed the post. Thanks for sharing. I am always desiring to wake up and this is encouraging. For me it is to stop saying no to LIFE , and start saying Yes, is how I would put it..

    There is no ego to overcome – there is only yielding to the truth.

    Love your blog,

    Onlylove Sandy

    1. awarenessishere

      Adyashanti goes as far as to suggest earnest intenion is all that is needed for awakening to one day happen. I would add that there is usually one big ego drive that stands unconsciously in the way of the ego stepping aside…but that’s another article. And it is also only an opinion!

  16. Ellen Besso

    Hi Lori Ann: Thanks for this blog & for your openness & honesty. Now I “get” the duality/complexity of where you’re coming for in a different way.


  17. suki

    Excellent post!…Even to know nothing, there must be Knowing. This Knowing will always be upstream from any experience. If ‘Englightenment’ is an experience, then what is Knowing this? It has to be your core essence or nature. In that sense it is unknowable because it is beyond the sphere of experience but wholly present as presence or pre-sense. I know nothing is an accurate assessment when translated through the body/brain/mind/thought. This is funny, just because we can label does not mean we know what anything is, so a story or mythology(whatever they may be) arise around everything we come into contact with…
    Paraphrasing Rumi “Language is like a tailor’s shop where nothing fits”…but I would venture and say nothing fits like nothing. 🙂

    1. awarenessishere

      And there are many paths up the mountain. I enjoyed some of your poetry, which is clear yearning for Truth expressed through the Christian lense. Thank you for reading. Lori Ann

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