Karen offers Non-dual Pointing / Satsang / Coaching to individuals / groups seeking to inquire into the nature of reality via Skype, telephone or face-to-face (See ‘About Individual Sessions’ for more info about one-to-one Skype calls).
What is Non-duality / Non-dual Pointing?
Non-duality simply means ‘not two’, the word being an English interpretation of the Sanskrit term ‘advaita’ – also meaning ‘not two’. Non-duality can be described as a philosophy relating to the true nature of existence, pointers acting as direct sign posts to that which is beyond words – the unified nature of life itself. This method of sharing using clear pointing can create an opportunity for the experiential recognition of life as it truly is.
What is Satsang?
The word satsang comes from the Sanskrit: ‘sat’ meaning ‘truth’ and ‘sanga’ meaning ‘company’, so ‘satsang’ literally means ‘in association with truth’. Satsang invites recognition of life as it IS through the palpable power of silent stillness. Meetings in stillness evoke presence – a quietening of the mind, which promotes the absence of cognitive influence. This stillness can seem to create a space in the stream of thinking for the recognition of THAT which is already present to be noticed.
Such meetings can be verbal or non-verbal in nature and although words may be given, they arise from and as silence, pointing to the ever present unchanging awareness that is the very heart of life itself. Satsang seems to amplify the power of silence generating presence and that, coupled with the direct pointers that can arise from silent stillness, can evoke the remembering of one’s true identity beyond form.
About One-to-One Coaching for Self Discovery
Unlike traditional coaching, which focuses on a perceived ‘problem’ and sets an outer goal /steps to overcome it, coaching of this nature focuses on the journey of self discovery. It is a more structured approach than the open nature of Non-dual Pointing / Satsang, initially focusing on getting to know the ‘individual’ and how they perceive life. From this perspective, a relationship develops where specific blocks to direct seeing can be revealed during self reflection. All experience can seem relevant, until it is recognised that who you truly are is not in any way limited to any idea you may have about yourself, nor by any experience. However, the aim is not to spend hours examining the mind, but to clearly reveal tendencies of mind that can experientially obscure recognition of one’s true nature.
By questioning the beliefs / assumptions (which are formulated when we were very young in terms of the human story) a conditioned blueprint can be noticed that is operating like a lens, through which all experience is viewed. By exploring perceptions and challenging points of view, a window of opportunity can be created that shines the light of awareness onto what can seem like almost invisible patterns of mental habit. This by nature can seem to ‘loosen’ these tendencies – simply by becoming aware of them, giving rise to the possibility of seeing through them altogether. This can then create an opportunity of revealing one’s true nature – the stable constant beyond all changing forms, states and experiences.
About the role of the ‘Teacher’ and the ‘Teacher – Student’ relationship.
Although Karen doesn’t see herself as a Teacher, when one is moved to share, such labels may sometimes be used. In relative terms, the ‘Teacher– Student’ relationship is purely an illusory one, only seemingly necessary until truth is revealed through the apparent act of direct looking.
The ‘purpose’ of any ‘Teacher’ is to make themselves obsolete. By pointing to the inherent and immediate freedom of anyone seeking help, the ‘Teacher’s’ aim is to ensure (as far as humanly possible) that help is no longer required. Upon recognition of life as it truly is, it is known directly that the ‘Teacher’ is nothing other than what you are, appearing in / as yourself.
About Karen’s approach to sharing
Karen’s combined approach is lead by ‘apparent’ individual need, intuitively meeting someone where they are in their own experience.
This approach can help facilitate ruthless Self Inquiry, as feeling ‘heard’ can promote trust and a willingness to directly investigate the nature of reality for oneself. Thus, creating the opportunity of noticing what is already present- but often innocently overlooked.
Realisation and the ‘Post Awakening’ Journey
Realisation reveals that what you are is the substratum of existence, the stable ‘constant’ without form or location from which all apparent phenomena arise and dissolve. Knowing yourself directly as ‘this’ delivers the most profound benefit to the human experience. In fact it is understood to be the only way to promote healing and peace in the ‘world’ experientially. A journey of surrender to that recognition can then seem to begin, with a deeper and deeper opportunity to abide as THAT.
While what you truly are remains forever undisturbed, Karen recognises that human life can seem challenging. After the initial recognition of one’s true nature the mind can again be identified with, in varying degrees of intensity. In terms of the human experience, remaining in the primordial state of one’s real nature can seem to be a challenging journey requiring ongoing commitment and dedication. However, with persistence it becomes more and more natural until no further effort is required.
In terms of the human experience, ever deepening abidance in truth can be likened to a beginning-less journey of unbounded potential, profound compassion and joy in life. As the effects of conditioning subside and true being becomes more and more prevalent, the peace and joy that is eternally present flows ever more readily through form and into the ‘world’.
The role of the ‘Teacher’ in addition to pointing to what is already present, is to facilitate independence and support in this journey as appropriate – until all doubts are cleared.
May you come to know beyond question, the truth of who you are and ever more deeply abide as THAT.
Much love, Karen Richards