Tag Archives: Inquiry


paradoxParadox: that’s what we’ve got. It’s not something unique that shows up on occasion, it’s the whole, wild, everyday display.

My relative offers deep insight into his friend’s abuse of his body, then drinks himself into a stupor, displaying no understanding of self-care.

The Texas floods sweep away this family, but not that one. The tornado slices through an Oklahoma town—half of it is pulverized, the other half remains untouched.

A terrorist group, in the name of their God, brutalizes children and sledge-hammers ancient sacred sites, while monks chant, meditate, and pray for the awakening of all beings.

Many people busy themselves with asking why.

I find all of it without meaning—the apparent good or the apparent bad. It’s just the phantasmagorical, endless, erupting Now.
The terrible, magnificent Now.

© Amrita Skye Blaine, 2015


Filed under Daily reminders, Musings, Non-duality

the invitation

Microsoft Word - Document2The invitation is to look, right now. Do not believe what anyone has told you; do not believe what you have read.

Everything depends on your dropping your beliefs about how the world is; you can always pick those beliefs up again, and looking at the heart of your own direct experience in this moment.

  • Has there ever been a moment in your life when it was not now?
  • Have you noticed that thoughts about the past and thoughts about the future always occur now?
  • Can you find a doer, or does life just get done?
  • Can you find the origin of a thought or a feeling, or do they arise full-blown, all on their own? And then, boom! they’re gone, just as abruptly as they arrived?
  • Do you really have control, or occasionally–do events simply happen to turn out the way you wanted, and then your mind takes ownership?


© Amrita Skye Blaine, 2013

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Filed under Advaita, Daily reminders

inquiry, take two

smiling shivaYesterday’s post quickly falls apart under close scrutiny, because in the first half I spoke about the personal, separate “I,” and in the second half, I was referring to the inquiry that brings one to understand there is no personal “I” at all–all there is, is freshly unfolding life.

This is how words continually miss the mark they aim for. And yet, I cannot deny my love affair with them. Words keep me up at night, as I lie in bed honing, mentally wordsmithing, searching for the most subtle,  direct, honest expression I can put forward.

Inquiry is Shiva. It destroys what we believed ourselves to be. What’s left has no ownership–but nothing has been lost. As my friend and teacher Elias Amidon says, “We’re ruined.” Then he can’t help but chuckle.

© Amrita Skye Blaine, 2013
photo credit

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Filed under Advaita, Musings, Non-duality, spirituality, Surrender, thoughts, Truth, writing


pointing-fingerMany of us are confused when we first learn about inquiry–the tendency is to turn our inquiry outward, to question about the meaning of life, or our beliefs, in relation to other peoples’. But inquiry really means turning around, and looking at the source of our experience. It takes a while to get the hang of it, because it is completely counter to what society teaches us.

My thirteenth summer, I went to a ranch horse camp in Colorado for two months–delicious fun. Soon after I returned home, my mother called me to her desk, and pointed to the eight letters I had written from camp–a Sunday requirement before we could eat dinner. “Your sentences all begin with ‘I,'” she said. She had circled all the “I”s with dark red pencil. “This is an ugly sign of self-centeredness.”

But how to express the experience I was having at camp without using the personal pronoun? I was dumbfounded–and humiliated–by her judgment.

Fifty years later, when I was introduced to inquiry, the instructions were exactly the opposite from my upbringing. “Look to the source of your experience,” my teacher said. “Stay with yourself. Don’t leave home.”

Initially this was very uncomfortable. I felt my mother–now dead–shaking her head, and her finger, at me. I smile, thinking of all her social training washing quietly down the drain.

© Amrita Skye Blaine, 2013
photo credit


Filed under Advaita, Musings, Non-duality, spirituality, thoughts, Truth