How can you know and understand what is possible for you without judging or rejecting where you are right now? This is difficult, but it is exactly what is required of us in order to practice inquiry. It is possible because Essence does present itself before we are one hundred percent realized. The guidance of essential presence itself makes it possible to learn to attune ourselves to our true nature because, as the presence manifests, it informs our consciousness of the right attitude, the right direction, which is beyond judgment.
Spacecruiser Inquiry, p. 192
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Even when we are not in the process of inquiry, we understand what is happening in our daily life because our mind is always correlating, contrasting, and judging. Without this, there is no knowledge and certainly no scientific knowledge. What we see here is that comparative judgment is an important part of discerning the truth. And comparative judgment, in the scientific sense, always leads to the recognition of the meaning and implications that result from the comparisons that are made. This means that to understand your current patterns, you also have to understand their relationship to what happened in your past.
The Unfolding Now, p. 81
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That is how comparative judgment, which inherently is a neutral function in our investigations, can become moral judgment. We hold it that one condition is better, more desirable, than another. And not only that—we also think that the condition or feeling we prefer is what we should go after. Comparative judgment thus becomes one of the primary barriers against being where we actually are.
Our mind naturally compares whatever we experience with other feelings and other experiences—both our own and those of other people. Perhaps you’re meditating and you start feeling a little bubbling in your belly, something you haven’t experienced before. A neutral response says, “That’s interesting, in contrast to yesterday when there was no bubbling.” However, it is more likely that when you feel the bubbling, you remember your friend who said that when he was meditating the other day, he had this lava flow—intense heat and brightness and a tremendous explosion. And you think, “All I feel is this little bubble? This is all I got? Obviously, what’s happening for me is not it.”
Or maybe it changes from a bubble into a big, exploding supernova, and you remember your friend talking about the lava, and you think, “What happened to him is nothing—this is it!” You want to hold on to the experience until you talk to him . . . whose is bigger? That sounds really funny, but it happens all the time. We don’t leave our experience alone. The problem is not the fact that we compare, but that we compare in a judgmental way. Our superego dominates our observations and we end up saying, “This is acceptable, that is not acceptable.” Everything is seen as good or bad, preferable or not, more evolved than someone else’s experience or not, and the result is that we can't let ourselves be where we are.
The Unfolding Now, p. 82
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So we can see more clearly now from these examples that when rejection accompanies comparative moral judgment, judgment loses its scientific neutrality and becomes based in the ego. Scientific neutrality means engaging in comparative judgment without having a preferential attitude. With that balanced neutrality, which is a kind of serenity, we remain alive, aware, and conscious, because we’re investigating, we’re interested. Our attitude is open and allowing with a contentment in seeking the truth. And that brings us back to the foundation of all of our exploration in the work that we are doing: Whatever our experience is, we are interested in being present with it and finding out the truth about it. Learning not to reject or accept whatever arises will help us do that as fully as possible.
The Unfolding Now, p. 96
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