Nonduality: Intellectual Understanding vs Direct Experience. New MJ Awakening Blog
July 28, 2019

knife in electric socket


Intellectual understanding is when your mother tells you when you’re a kid not to put any metal objects into an electric socket because you’ll get shocked. Direct experience is when your mother is not around and you go ahead and stick a knife into the electric socket and get knocked on your ass as your whole body receives a powerful and painful white hot jolt of unforgiving electricity.

With the former, your understanding was conceptual. It had not penetrated your being. But with the latter, no words are ever again necessary because now you know from direct experience the dangers of sticking a fork or knife into an electric socket.

The same is true for Nonduality. You can read dozens of books and watch hundreds of youtube videos on Nonduality, but your understanding will remain intellectual. You understand that the “me” is an illusion, but only as a concept. And thus you find you’re still suffering. And so you look for another video, hoping the next one will do the trick.

But the truth is until you actually see this for yourself, the suffering will continue because the “me” hasn’t been fully realized to be a phantom. It seems like it’s there, but when looked for can never be found. And that’s the key, you have to actually look for this “me.” Meaning, the next time you’re suffering, instead of trying to think of a way out, you hit the pause button and take time to actually look for the one who claims to be suffering. I mean really look!

You’re looking for the entity inside you that claims to be suffering or annoyed or hurt or upset or whatever. Because if you can’t actually find it, i.e., there’s literally nothing there (and you’re willing to be honest with what you actually find… or don’t find in this case), then the whole thing collapses as the house of cards it actually is. This is the practice of “self-inquiry” in action. But few actually do it, and yet it’s the key to ending this business of seeking once and for all.

You have to actually do the looking for yourself (no one can do it for you), which is direct experience and goes deeper than just intellectually agreeing with the concept that there’s no “me.”

Michael Jeffreys


What is THE essential quality of this moment? new MJ Awakening Blog
September 27, 2016


The goal of Self-Inquiry is NOT to tell you what you are… only to reveal what you are not. This is no small point. What you are you already are, but what you are not BUT IMAGINE YOU ARE is what is causing the confusion and thus suffering.

We cannot put into words what we are, but we can know for certain that whatever comes and goes, be it a body, a thought, a feeling, a sound, or a sensation, is NOT essential to the existence of this moment. That which is essential never comes or goes so anything impermanent cannot be You.

What is THE essential quality of this moment? Meditate on this.

Michael Jeffreys

Noticing what is Always Looking… New MJ Awakening pic quote
July 22, 2016

mj appearance to what buddha face pic quote

What’s being looked for is what is looking.

And what is looking is never not present.

Remove attention from thoughts and remain still.

See if you can silently NOTICE the next thought that arises.

Now notice the next one. And the next. Keep noticing.

Soon it will dawn that ALL thoughts are an appearance.

An appearance in/to what??

Michael Jeffreys

A little inquiry into the “I” you take yourself to be… new MJ Awakening Blog
March 10, 2016


When you refer to yourself as “I”, what exactly are you referring to?

A feeling? Are you a feeling exclusively?

A thought? Are you a thought exclusively?

A story? Are you a story exclusively?

A sound? Are you a sound exclusively?

A word? Are you a word exclusively?

And if you really are that “I”, then what, exactly, is referring to that “I” ????

Michael Jeffreys


Causeless joy/peace & the inherent emptiness behind thoughts… new MJ Awakening Blog
February 23, 2015


Causeless joy/peace is revealed to already be present when the belief in the idea of a separate “me” is seen through. Is the thought of a “you” the same as an actual separate, independent entity? No. It’s just a thought. There is no substance behind it. The thought is the full sum of the entire experience! There is nothing more to it. Have a look! Same for feelings. It will come as the biggest and most wonderful surprise when you realize that the cause of all your suffering never actually existed!

-Michael Jeffreys

Sound (like everything else) is made out of Awareness… new MJ Awakening Blog
September 28, 2014


The idea that we “hear sound” is an illusion. In your direct experience, you NEVER “hear” sound. For example, if you “hear a train whistle,” that implies that there was the whistling sound that your sense of hearing “picked up” or “was able to perceive” as the train went by. However, until you actually were aware of the train whistle, where was it? Was it “off stage” somewhere, unavailable until you got close enough to hear it? No. Why? Because there is no “off stage”! To believe that sound exists prior to your awareness of it is an assumption!

So, we are not hearing sounds that are “out there” somewhere, “off stage,” waiting to be heard. Rather, sound = hearing, hearing = sound. They are not two. Sound IS hearing, hearing IS sound. There is no “you” who hears sound. The awareness of sound would be all there is to sound. (And even sound itself is ultimately unfindable, and thus a concept! For instance, when there is awareness of a train whistle, I find nothing in it called “sound.”)

-Michael Jeffreys

What is Looking? Flipping the Camera Around
February 5, 2013

flip the camera around


What happens when you “flip the camera around”?

In other words, when you become aware of the One who is observing out of your eyes, NOW, THIS very moment.

What happens when you shift your attention to the One who is looking? If it’s truly your heart’s desire to awaken, than stop being so interested in WHAT you are observing and start being more interested in THAT which is doing the observing. Get to know YOURSELF. How? By allowing your attention to fall back on itself.

Read that again: By allowing your attention to fall back on itself.

It’s the opposite of where your attention normally goes, which is “out there.” Instead, go in reverse and trace backward toward whence you come from. Eventually thoughts will run out of suggestions, but don’t stop. Just have it in your heart’s desire to keep going, even without thought. Let something “awaken” in you to show you the way home.

And what you may discover, shockingly, is that try as you might, you can’t seem to truly find yourself! Like water, the ‘real’ you slips from your grasp every time, despite your best effort to grab it and hold onto it. So, despite truly finding nothing, the paradox of all paradoxes is that, nevertheless, HERE YOU ARE!!!!!

-Michael Jeffreys

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