by A. H. Almaas
"The entirety of all and everything is practicing as the individual is practicing.” So A. H. Almaas begins his deep exploration of the nature of being in his book, Runaway Realization, Living a Life of Ceaseless Discovery.
His approach takes the very essence of our teaching, there is only One, present in its infinite nature everywhere, and presses us to really investigate what this means. Who are we as human expressions in this oneness?
Almaas starts with exploring what practice is, opening up the understanding of realization/enlightenment as an ongoing, ever expanding experience, as opposed to a final destination. He then brings in the idea that it is the Realized Mind, the One Consciousness that is doing the work through us. This I think of as the “Good News” of our teaching. I find his writing presses me to look deeper and deeper still into my understanding and experience of consciousness, and how to see beyond all that I may have ever known, and then to keep letting go into more. He describes our walk of life as both a dual nature as individuals and as the undivided oneness of all, simultaneously unfolding.
Not a quick or easy read, Runaway Realization takes us on an inner journey, not only of the head, but in our actual reaching to a greater experience of the wholeness of life. Almaas’ book has softened and melted some of the edges that seem to separate me from aspects of myself, others and life itself. Oneness and consciousness are not small concepts. Take the dive.
Review by Rev. Ruth Barnhart, a staff minister at Center for Spiritual Living, Santa Rosa.
Runaway Realization is available from Stepping Stones Books and Gifts.