Collections / / The Open Path: Recognizing Nondual Awareness
Interest in nondual awareness as the essence of spiritual awakening, free from the obligations and cultural references of a particular religion, is rapidly expanding throughout the Western world. Those who have sought out and followed spiritual paths, such as Buddhism, Hinduism, Sufism, Kabbalism, etc., have often found themselves coming up...
Interest in nondual awareness as the essence of spiritual awakening, free from the obligations and cultural references of a particular religion, is rapidly expanding throughout the Western world. Those who have sought out and followed spiritual paths, such as Buddhism, Hinduism, Sufism, Kabbalism, etc., have often found themselves coming up against a kind of ceiling in their longing for spiritual awakening. This can be a result of the religion s cultural context or a belief system that may not see awakening as something within the reach of adherents. The Open Path is an excellent guide to the realization of the silent ground of all being and to the expression of that realization in the diverse conditions of their lives.
Elias Amidon is the spiritual director (Pir) of the Sufi Way International. He has been an initiate of the Sufi Way for the past forty-two years. Pir Elias has also studied with Qadiri Sufis in Morocco, Theravaden Buddhist teachers in Thailand, Native American teachers of the Assemblies of the Morning Star, Christian monks in Syria, Zen teachers of the White Plum Sangha, and contemporary teachers in the Dzogchen tradition.He helped develop several schools, including the Boulder Institute for Nature and the Human Spirit, the graduate program in Environmental Leadership at Naropa University, and the Open Path. He has a Bachelors degree in literature from Antioch College and has written six books. Pir Elias has been leading programs in Sufism for over three decades, and Open Path programs for the past six years. He resides in Boulder, Colorado but continues to travel widely, both teaching Open Path programs and engaging in citizen diplomacy.
Coleman Barks author of The Essential Rumi Among many mysteries explored here: spontaneous prayer, kindness, emptiness, starting from where you are, the freedom of the universe, awakening, is one that Elias Amidon barely mentions friendship. Moving through this book feels to me like a continuously opening friendship. --Coleman Barks author of The Essential Rumi
The Open Path integrates hitherto hidden jewels and fragrances of Sufi mastery with more classical sources of nondual teaching. The result is not only that we receive fuller and more precise instruction but that we get to experience Elias Amidon's lucidity as a living sage and powerful lineage holder. --James O'Dea, former president of the Institute of Noetic Sciences and author of Cultivating Peace
Elias Amidon is a gifted teacher and writer. We are blessed that he has assembled his lucid and powerful transmission with such coherence and depth in this book. His capacity for tapping the essence of the world's nondual traditions and sharing this in a thoroughly experiential way is unique. I am certain that immersing yourself in his vision and the exercises he recommends will bring you profound benefits. --Peter Fenner, Ph.D., founder of Timeless Wisdom
It is rare and wonderful when a man, who has been such a force for good in our world, opens to us his inward path. For those who would explore the teachings of nonduality, Elias Amidon will be gratefully recognized as a valuable resource and guide. --Joanna Macy, author of Active Hope
Drawing on the Pathways of the great traditions, Elias Amidon guides us to Open Awareness of the Oneness of Being, with his wide Heart and clarity of experience. The Open Path will be read with joy by any reader who wishes to uncover their True Nature. --Pir Shabda Kahn, musician and spiritual leader of the Sufi Ruhaniat International
The Open Path is a powerful evocation of nondual awareness by a great teacher and friend to the world. --Roshi Joan Halifax, founding abbot, Upaya Zen Center
This is one of the clearest and most practical books I have ever read on the subtleties of recognizing nondual awareness. Elias Amidon's heartfelt clarity carries the signature of someone who has walked the journey himself and discovered there is no road. --Roger Housden, author of Chasing Rumi
Elias Amidon offers us a lucid and practical gift: how to open our hearts to awareness, to what is real. This is a loving and helpful offering that will unquestionably serve those who read it. It is truly a beautiful book. --Roshi Pat Enkyo O Hara, Abbot of the Village Zendo, Manhattan
In this lucid and graceful manual, Elias Amidon reveals a path open to all who seek. Seekers become finders. This book is a little treasure to be read again and again! --William Ury, Co-author of Getting to Yes, and co-founder of Abraham s Path
Elias Amidon's The Open Path is an unerring guide to serve people who yearn for a spirituality that transcends religion and frees the soul from the shackles of false beliefs. Pir Elias helps the mind understand the soul and warms the heart to embrace and be embraced by the cosmic inner beloved. --Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi, co-author of A Hidden Light
Each of the great religions has a gateway into nondual reality. Elias Amidon's lucidly clear and evocative presentation of The Open Path makes evident that the Sufis are among the gatekeepers. --Keith Dowman, Dzogchen teacher and translator, author of Natural Perfection
Includes bibliographical references (p. -223).
Table of Contents:
Preface -- A Note about the Sources or the Open Path -- 1. Open Awareness -- What Is Open Awareness? -- A Note about the Words Used Here -- The Unconditioned and the Conditioned -- Paradox -- Exercises: Open Awareness -- 1. Gravity and Awareness -- 2. Attributes of Awareness -- 2. The Practice of Subtle Opening -- The Contradiction of Practicing -- Expecting Nothing -- Posture -- The Practice of Subtle Opening -- 3. What Obscures Open Awareness? -- Identity Making -- Doing -- Liking and Disliking -- Willing and Controlling -- Knowing and Making Meaning -- Fear or Vanishing -- Nothing Obscures Open Awareness -- Exercises: What Obscures Open Awareness? -- 1. Personal Inventory -- 2. Noticing Behavior Patterns -- 3. Positive, Negative, and Pure Listening -- 4. Noticing Mental Constructions and Fixations -- Learning to Notice Mental Constructions and Fixations -- Fixations and Their Roots -- Noticing Fixations -- Acting Without Bias -- Release at Inception -- Exercises: Noticing Mental Constructions and Fixations -- 1. Observing Fixations -- 2. Fixation Dialogue -- 3. Meditation Practice -- 5. Self-Inquiry -- The Resonant Field -- The One Rule -- Unfindability -- Further Lines of Self-Inquiry -- Exercises: Self Inquiry -- A Few Contemplations on the Open Path -- 6. Motivation and Effortlessness -- An Overview -- Motivation -- Attitude -- Longing and Finding -- Effortlessness -- Conclusion -- Exercises: Motivation and Effortlessness -- Motivation and Attitude -- Effortlessness -- The River Flow Meditation -- 7. On Nonduality and Prayer -- To Begin at the End -- Starting Where We Are -- Prayers of Petition -- Indirect Benefits of a Prayerful Life -- Prayers of Approach and Nearness -- The Limits of Prayer -- Learning to Pray Wisely -- Prayers of Identity -- Prayers of Silence -- Exercises: On Nonduality and Prayer -- 8. The Art of Awakening -- The Idea that Something Is Missing -- The Art of Awakening -- Practicing the Art -- Conversations that Release -- Developing a Non-Doing Contemplative Practice -- Release at Inception -- 9. A Joyous Cosmology -- Introduction -- Theme I. Realizing the Absence of Story -- Theme II. Experiencing the Intimacy of Openness -- Theme III. Surrendering All at Once -- Theme IV. The Joy of Unbounded Wholeness -- 10. The Ocean of Kindness -- Immanence -- 1. Nondual Action -- 2. Equanimity -- 3. Unconditional Kindness -- Exercise: The Ocean of Kindness -- 11. The Heart of the Matter -- Summary, Chapters Six Through Ten -- The Heart of the Matter -- Falling From Heaven -- 1. Do Nothing -- 2. No Need to Know -- 3. No Subject -- 4. Listening to Listening -- 5. Pointings -- 6. Relax -- The Invisible Offering -- Notes -- Bibliography -- Gratitude to Teachers and Sources -- Acknowledgements -- About the Author.
Interest in non-dual awareness as the essence of spiritual awakening, free from the obligations and cultural references of a particular religion, is rapidly expanding throughout the Western world. Those who have sought out and followed spiritual paths, such as Buddhism, Hinduism, Sufism, Kabbalism, etc., have often found themselves coming up against a kind of ceiling in their longing for spiritual awakening. This can be a result of the religions cultural context or a belief system that may not see awakening as something within the reach of adherents. So, many serious spiritual students have turned to non-sectarian teachers to further their practice. These readers will find The Open Path to be an excellent guide to the realisation of the silent ground of all being and to the expression of that realisation in the diverse conditions of their lives. The book includes very helpful exercises and practices that foster a sense of equanimity and natural insight, as well as methods and teachings from many sources: Sufism, psychology, meditation traditions, and both Eastern and Western non-dual teachers.
Contributor Bio: Amidon, Elias
Elizabeth Roberts, Ed.D., and Elias Amidon are well known advocates for social justice and spiritual awakening. They are on the faculty of the Naropa Institute and lead rites-of-passage ceremonies, spiritual retreats, and transformation programs across the United States, Europe, and Southeast Asia. Together they edited Earth Prayers and Life Prayers.