Showing posts with label Charles Genoud. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Charles Genoud. Show all posts

Thusness and I think this is a book with great clarity.


A few excerpts from Gesture of Awareness by Charles Genoud:

When we develop true intimacy with our body, we become intimate with ourselves. We learn to be present as a whole. We open to discovery of our essence when the dichotomy of body-mind is dropped.

This is precisely the purpose of the practice of Gesture of Awareness.

In this practice we explore movement to discover the nature of awareness. We inquire even of the sensation of tension in the neck – becoming aware not of the sensation but of the consciousness of it; becoming aware not of the consciousness of it, but of the essence of the consciousness. One does not always have to practice Gesture of Awareness, though, in such a gradual way.

If the body is just a thought, the play of awareness, then ultimately an intimate knowledge of the body is an intimate knowledge of awareness...


....Are we present
in what we do
at every instant?

Or are we doing
the not-yet-here,
that which we are wishing for

In the simplicity
of the experience,

is the doing of what we do

The action is
not located anywhere.

In order for something
to be placed somewhere there needs
to be at least two phenomena.

When there is only one,
there is nothing with respect to
where it may be located.

Bodily sensations are not in the body -
for the sensations themselves,
the sensations are not happening anywhere.

From the left hand’s point of view,
it is not located anywhere.
It is nowhere.

Nothing to improve.

If there were only one universe
and therefore nothing outside it,

could we located the universe?
Here without any possibility
of there is devoid of signification.

Here nondualistically
is meaningless.

Now here


Can the most dense place
of presence be found in the head
or heart or wherever else?

is the place with the densest sense of being
right in the experience itself?

Is the place with the densest sense of being
right in bodily sensation
when there is bodily sensation?

right in the experience itself:
in a thought
when there is a thought?

What if we bring our attention,
our awareness, to a specific place,
any specific place, any part of the body?

If we try as meditators to bring our awareness to our walking we’ll be
in the profane place in front of the temple.

When we bring our attention somewhere
we’re in the profane world.

Bringing our awareness
to any experience means we’re not
in the most dense place of existence.

We don’t need to bring our awareness anywhere -
awareness is always within the arising
of the experience itself.

We don’t need to make any separation
between bodily sensations and awareness.
Bodily sensations are already awareness.

Thought is already awareness.
We don’t need to bring
awareness to the thought.

What we’re exploring
is not the body
but the body’s awareness.

We’re just exploring
the body of awareness.

We may wonder where
the body’s awareness is,
imagining it’s in the body.

but the body’s awareness will only be
in the body if we stand outside ourselves
trying to figure out where it is.

The center gives orientation.
It’s not located anywhere.

The experience of the body’s awareness
or the thought’s awareness is not located anywhere
from the standpoint of the experience.

There is nothing outside
the experience of the body’s awareness.

Awareness is not located anywhere.
It is not situated in space.

for space would then be something known by
experience: it’s not a characteristic
of awareness itself.

In our exploration
it’s not necessary
to  direct our awareness.

Rather, let awareness
play out on its own.

Rest simply with experiences,
with bodily sensations,

If one tries to bring awareness
someplace then one may not
be complete.

And so now you know
where the place to be is.


In spiritual circles, workshops, talks, and retreats
words like here and now are used like mantras,
as if they express truth.

Don’t the words here and now
depend on place, on time -
on before and after?

Don’t they express dualism?
Don’t the words here and now
express a fragmented understanding?

We may find this notion that things
don’t happen in place or time
more challenging.

An experience happens somewhere only when
we place ourselves outside the experience
as an observer, as an experiencer.

An experience happens
somewhere only with respect to
another somewhere.

When we are the experience itself,
can it be experienced
at any place?

When we bring our attention
somewhere, don’t we create a place?

When I move my attention to my arm,
mindful of sensations in my arm,
am I not making a place, a world?

isn’t this how we structure
our daily lives, our reality?

This structure of our lives,
our reality, is exactly
what we’re questioning.

We’re questioning the way we create
a world through attitude and language
and purposeful mindfulness.

When we believe in the world
in which we live,
when we believe in separation,
when we believe in duality,
in subject and object, we’re creating
our cage, our prison, our chains.

Or we may keep on creating the world,
while yet realizing the fictional
aspect of our creation.

Though they may sound harsh,
these two words – achronic and atopic -
illuminate with their precision.

No time, no place,
no when, no where.

In order to explore this,
we may have to stop following
our tendency to be an observer,

our tendency to observe
our experiences, our thoughts.

If we set ourselves up as an observer
of our thoughts we could locate them
with respect to this observer.

If we are just thoughts – if we are
the arising thoughts – where could
we locate them, and with respect to what?

can we say a thought is here, or there?
Here or there
is the thought that we are

when here arises with the simultaneous
impossibility of there -
it has no meaning.

This may be said to be true
for all experiences.

Tasting, thinking, smelling, hearing,
tactile sensation, seeing -

the simplicity of our experiences -
where do they happen?

The seeing itself, and not the object -
where does seeing happen?

Can we say it’s happening in front of us,
or behind us, or inside, or outside,
and with respect to what?

We may inquire of all our senses
in this way without building
any sense of location.

Can I just walk, just experience
bodily sensations, and not invent stories?

If there is nothing other than bodily sensations, in which space could I move?
Toward what, away from what?

In our work, we don’t need to cultivate
the attempt to be mindful
of something specific.

Just walking, just seeing,
just hearing – we don’t need to try to walk or see or hear.

maybe we’re as absent as
the characters in Blanchot’s novel:
we are nowhere.

Yet that is
to be questioned.


In trying to find anything
real in the form that appears,
one is left with nothing,

yet this nothing
allows form to appear,
the flowers to blossom.

The dreamlike can play,
gather together and separate.


In observing there is just simply presence.
A presence without anyone.

When the action
not subject to aim rests
in itself, where is separation?

In wholly doing something -
acting totally in oneness -
there’s no aim, no result,

no I, no actor,
only act.


Mental images are traces -
traces, habitual patterns.

As we need to rest
on something which seems stable,
firm, we cling to traces.

On the traceless, therefore
we project the notion of time and duration.

To find comfort and security
we make something
out of an ungraspable reality.

We grasp so quickly
conceptualize so conditionally,
that we’re never aware of the traceless.

Holding on to an experience by means of a concept,
I solidify it:
I make it into something,
a something
that can be opposed to something else.


We don’t need to read fiction
to be in a dream-like reality

as there is no real world
behind the dream,
behind the traces.


We live in an illusory world,
an illusory world that we share,

an illusion kept alive
by tacit convention.

The reality of our everyday life
depends on shared conditionality -

it is a common dream,
not a private one.

Can you move your hand
in a circular way, not holding on
to traces;
can you move your hand
and not be drawn in by the notion of a circle? Let’s explore.

Know when you are dealing with traces.

Know when you are just experiencing.


the Buddha says:

In seeing, just seeing; in hearing, just hearing;
in tasting, just tasting; in smelling, just smelling;
in feeling, just feeling; in thinking, just thinking.

It was enough for the Brahmin,
who awakened.

But what does
just mean?

It means the elimination
of the reality of a tangible subject
and tangible object;

it leaves seeing whole.
A seeing in which the totality
of my being participates..

A seeing beyond any notion
of inside and outside.

A seeing without a seer;
a seeing without anything seen.

it leaves intimacy,
an intimacy leaving only presence,
only awareness.

How is I-less seeing,
I-less hearing

When wind blows,
do we look for a blower
apart from the blowing?

When fire burns,
do we look for burner
apart from the fire?

Can’t I see the way the wind blows
can feel the way fire burns when I lie
on the floor with my eyes closed?

Is there any rester apart from the resting?
is there any feeler separated
from feeling bodily sensations?

The sense of being at rest
on the floor
or on one’s back

creates separation,
creates duality.
Is the notion of floor,

or the notion of back, anything but
imagination, a construct based
on the sensation of hardness, of coldness?

A construct useful if we’re to clean the floor, useful
if we need to protect our back,

but it misleads
if we’re concerned with intimacy,
with full presence.

Can I rest on the floor
like the fire burns?

Can I walk
like the wind blows?....