Drukama RadioTM Episode 52 – Awareness, Death and Rebirth
Today Daishi and Ginger discuss death, awareness, and rebirth from an esoteric perspective. What is the importance of preparing for our own death, and how can we die consciously? What is required to achieve a spiritual ‘rebirth’ in this life? Why might we sometimes feel stuck or like we are moving backwards on the Path, and is that actually the case? How does awareness relate to the cycle of rebirth, and how can it ultimately lead to our Liberation?
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Episode 52 Extract
Awareness, Death and Rebirth
“In truth, the esoteric Path is about dying consciously…”
“An amazing opportunity for us to… utilize awareness and energy to give rise to being reborn in the spirit. That’s really the hidden secret of escaping or Liberating the process of continuous rebirth here in this world, and that’s where every authentic system concludes itself…
Egoic fears, egoic tendencies, mind-stream, and so on get reduced more and more… We suddenly find ourselves not caring about the things that we used to invest in and defend, like the little ego, little transient self… If I’m no longer bothered by these symptoms, then my options expand exponentially…
If you’re no longer tethered down to a perimeter that’s created by an illusory self, and you’ve actually broken that… then you get reborn here as well.
So not only are you prepared for death and the next adventure [Liberation], but this world becomes completely boundless, too.”
~ Daishi Nagiyah
Full Transcript of This Episode
Ginger: Hi everyone and welcome to Drukama Radio. I’ll be your co-host today. My name’s Ginger. Daishi, we’re really happy to have you on the show today. How are you?
Daishi: I’m doing good. Good to hear from you. I love the title. Let’s get into it.
Ginger: So today we’re talking about awareness, death and rebirth. How do you want to begin?
Daishi: Well, let’s talk about those three subjects individually because they’re important. Obviously death, that’s probably one of the biggest things that happens to human-being that we don’t consider. So death is something that’s coming after every single human being and we never consider it, look at it or think about it because we don’t know what to do with it. So we always throw death away although every human being- it’s the only sole singular thing that every human being experiences and for some reason the scariness of that death process is something we don’t want to face, and so that’s an important subject. It’s one of the most important subjects I think when it comes to the path, because in truth the esoteric path is about dying consciously, at the end of the day.
Ginger: It’s a really important point and I notice in my own experience that I’ve been sort of habituated to not look at death because I was always taught that death didn’t matter, that there was something beyond, and in this life I only needed to worry about sort of how well I did and that after I died, then something would happen. So it’s always this future-casting.
Daishi: It’s a really important point because that’s so true. We think that you know, I’m sort of hoping that I’m doing well enough in the life that I’m leading that death is going to be fantastic for me and there’ll be some reward for everything I’ve put up with here in the world.
You’re right, it’s future-casting, what a great way of saying it. So we’re just presuming things and making assumptions about something we don’t know anything about and I think that’s tremendously important and that’s why I think most important to the path is to focus on recreating death consciously, so that when it does come, we’re prepared for it. At the end of the day as I said earlier, that’s the the high of all esoteric teachings, is really to get to that place.
Ginger: And what you’re also speaking to here is this sort of self-governing process where a lot of us might not realize that we can do anything about it. Can you talk about that a little bit?
Daishi: Yeah that’s a great point. What can we do about it? So what we’re taught in the esoteric process is that we can learn how to die consciously. There’s a process for it and we can go through that process, whether it’s through our dreaming experiences or through our meditative experiences deliberately. This is so important because we can actually achieve a deathlike state consciously, so that when it does come on we’re prepared and we also know what to expect. It lends to the clarity that we have in our waking life and it also removes the obstacle of fear that is so prevalent in society.
I mean think about how much fear drives greed and ego and makes us try to be better at everything than everyone else in our lives. So death, the process of becoming conscious during death, eliminates several important key driving forces in our lives.
Ginger: So now this leads me to wonder about rebirth and whether you mean rebirth in this life, rebirth after physical death or both? How does that work?
Daishi: Well we can only speculate because I mean whatever I say in my experience that I’ve realized, this is really only assumptions for the hearer, but this is why it’s important for us to do this process consciously so that we can learn through our own direct experience what this is like.
So the idea is that we want to try to get into a state where we’ve reduced the physical nervous system, the breathing apparatus, the impulsive brain mind stream and the underlying energetic system enough, so that we can start to explore how do we get to that state and what happens when we get there. What we find is that as the brain wave begins to move down into layers, from its crazy beta state into alpha and then into the dream state of theta and then deeper into no dreaming states of delta and beyond. That every single night when we go to sleep we’re actually recreating a little death, and when we wake up in the morning we’re creating a little rebirth. So every single day whether we’re doing dream or meditative practice we have the opportunity to experience this if we’re just understanding two principal factors. One, how do I become more aware of it and two, what’s the exact process, because nobody seems to know that.
Ginger: So the exact process of this mini death and rebirth then trains us for the ‘big show’ at the end of the physical life.
Daishi: That’s exactly right and more importantly I think – or just as importantly I should say – is that it also tends to eradicate many underlying complications in our system presently in our waking life and that leads to a healthier life all around. So if I’m not scared about death because I’ve experienced it partially or fully, I know kind of what’s coming up and what’s going to happen to my physical system. I’ve done that deliberately. Then I begin to experience things that go beyond the physical boundaries and suddenly I’m very confident happy and life has a whole new meaning to me.
So we’ve already kind of eliminated a bunch of egoic life problems simply by exploring something that’s happening to us on a regular basis and will ultimately happen to us at the end of our lives.
Ginger: So I’m going to go back to your initial point about with awareness, death and rebirth. What what it seems like you’re saying here is that bringing awareness to this process then sort of changes our entire experience of death and rebirth. So can you talk a little bit more about the awareness of the process itself?
Daishi: Sure and one of the things I think is important to note is that, if I have to go into death and it’s going to be a one-time event and I have no idea what it’s like and I’m completely unprepared for it and I haven’t made any corrections to my awareness prior to that date, I’m in deep trouble, because it’s too big of an experience to handle the first time around. It’s sort of like saying, “You’re going to go skydiving but we’re not going to tell you anything about it, you’re just going to jump out of the plane and we hope you make it”. You won’t.
So the idea is that you need training. Right, so if we’re going to train for skydiving so much that we have backup parachutes and training camps and short dives and all kinds of stuff that we get used to before we actually get out of a real plane, we should be ultimately prepared for what’s coming up as the biggest event in our lives which is death. So the two important factors of that is one, how to be aware of this process step by step. That’s very important and we can do that every single day whether it’s in our dreaming state or meditative state. Now that’s one.
The other important factor is, what is the exact process? Because what we’ll find is a lot of people will try to be more aware during this either sleep-dream process or through the meditative process and get stuck, and that’s because valuable and essential components of the process are missing in most systems. If you don’t understand that you’re going to find yourself platforming out or bottoming out depending on whether it’s meditative or dreaming experience, and you’re going to get stuck. That’s what happens to most meditators.
Ginger: I found that in my own experience as well. I followed a few different paths but it’s like I’d get so far with something and I’d have this sense that something’s missing or I’ve kind of veered off and have spun out into some sort of doldrum where there doesn’t appear to be progress, nothing really makes sense, and I can’t see the value- the application for real life. I have a feeling that you’re going to give us a little more than that.
Daishi: That’s exactly right. You’re describing I think what every practitioner goes through. It’s one of the reasons why we’re pushing so hard to have a step-by-step curriculum that’s explained in a very deliberate, slow and methodical process. Because we have there are several things to consider that are missing for most esoteric paths and that is the how/why/what to do/what not to do and all the little things that are essential. If you don’t know those things you want can end up getting stuck somewhere, as you said, in the middle. And the application of that doesn’t seem practical in waking life.
We’re not trying to have a result of change in the waking state. This isn’t really the main essential component of the path. That’s a result or a side-effect of the path. That we become more clear and more connected and gentle and happier in our lives as a side effect. It’s not really the driving goal. What the goal is, is to understand how awareness and energy need to be merged, and these two things are vital. So, on one hand I have my clarity, which is the removal of the toxic thought stream and the egoic mental aggregates that get in the way of my pure awareness. That’s one thing. And on the other side is to activate and to accelerate our energies in the body so that both of those are coming up concurrently and eventually merge together. If those aren’t being done together then one side of the other will be off balanced, and it’s going to feel as if the path isn’t practical enough or that it’s breaking apart somewhere at the seams.
Ginger: Well this is a critical thing and you just mentioned it quickly and then moved on, but I’m still sitting here saying, wait a minute you mean to say that “a change in my waking experience” is not what I’m after? And you know all the conversations I’ve had with so many different people over the years, the thing I hear the most is “I want, I want more happiness, I want more focus, I don’t want to be depressed anymore.” Whatever the symptom is. So if I’m hearing you correctly then the process that you’re introducing would not go directly after the symptoms, but would go after the cause and then the symptoms may change as a result?
Daishi: And so here’s the vital thing that you just said. I cannot look at the symptoms as a way of judging my progress on the path. Why? Because the symptoms are going to get worse. As we develop more energy and more clarity what happens in fact is that we actually lose our perspective a little bit on the outside waking world. Because we get more space, less boundary, less perimeter, less conditions. During the middle of that process it feels worse on me, it feels stranger and so that’s why I say that kinds of paths that are preached about happy-joy-love-abundance this is not really the authentic spiritual path. That spiritual path is like a little death and what happens in this process is more space, less boundary because I’ve become consciously expanded and that means more chaos. That doesn’t mean more joy and happiness and abundance it means more chaos, because my perception has to adjust to that space and that does not feel good all the time. So what I’m actually doing is moving through a process that creates more chaos out there and then I look and say, “I feel less settled, I feel less courageous, I feel less joy most of the time. And I feel afraid and scared and all these other things.” And so that’s actually part and parcel of the correct way of middling in that path.
We don’t want to look at the symptoms because of that. We want to understand the process through and through. So we can say yes during this important stage in the middle as things open up and bloom and my perimeter gets expanded, I’m going to feel like I’m moving backwards and I have troubles and my joy is leaving me, I’m facing more rhythms and corrections. Yes yes yes, but understanding why that’s the case and also understanding where we’re headed to. Because at some point that splits apart and the energy actually catches up with the awareness and emerging happens where we do find a radical Stream-like peacefulness and that’s the point where perception has had the enlightenment of energy behind it, so that the vastness that is exposed due to a lack of perimeters is totally acceptable. No matter how big it is. So even if it’s infinite, the awareness is strong enough to say, “It doesn’t matter. It can be a hundred miles a hundred thousand miles or an infinite amount of miles to me, it doesn’t make any difference anymore.” And now that that energy is caught up it gives me the security and the connection to deal with that. But prior to that, that openness, that vastness, that expansion is going to be frightening and at an overwhelming to an egoic system that we’re taking apart.
Ginger: Isn’t that what chases us right back into rebirth after physical death, that expansiveness?
Daishi: Yes, that’s right. So we end up going into the death process and we say, “Oh my god. This is so scary,” that we jump into a womb and we get reborn as potential again, and then I always like to say to each human spirit or each human soul is just a potential. It has the potential to become more and to get out of the cycle of rebirth, only if it’s prepared well enough and then it moves on. That preparedness is a rebirth, is a sort of spiritual rebirth instead of a physical rebirth or we have two people coming together and physically putting a body around this consciousness. We perform that within, in a spiritual rebirth and we put the consciousness we have into another kind of body and so that gets a little bit into the esoteric path process, but that’s essentially all it is.
Ginger: So is that the same thing as Liberation?
Daishi: Exactly. It’s the same concept behind the liberating factor, so basically when I understand the death process and I’ve become accustomed to those phases that were normally not consciously aware of, then I’m able to go right through the death process and liberate myself into the next phase of the life process which is another whole structure or another completely different area that’s totally unique and different than the binary or dualistic mind that we have here.
Daishi: As we move through the stages of the brainwave activity which are like waking and dreaming and dreamless sleep and unconscious sleep and so on, we’re typically not aware of most of that, of probably 80% of that process and we just go in day and day out totally blind to it. We don’t understand it, we don’t know we don’t even know why we should understand it and we allow it to naturally influence us and we go about that until we die.
But really the esoteric process says that, that is an amazing opportunity for us to become more aware, build our energies in a certain way and then utilize that awareness and energy to give rise to being reborn in the spirit. That’s really the hidden secrets of escaping or liberating the process of continuous rebirth here in this world, and that’s where every authentic system concludes itself, is in that process. And the result is egoic fears, egoic tendencies, mind-stream and so on get reduced more and more as I go through it and the symptoms that we experience in the waking life just become as a side effect reduced more and more and more. We suddenly find ourselves not caring about the things that we used to invest in and defend, like the little ego, little transient self, and so on.
Ginger: So in that way we really can be we can die and be reborn in this life as a free being. If I’m no longer bothered by these symptoms, then my options expand exponentially.
Daishi: Exactly right. If you’re no longer tethered down to a perimeter that’s created by an illusory self and you’ve actually broken that in a very deeply unconscious way, then you actually get reborn here as well. So not only are you prepared for death and the next adventure, but this world becomes completely boundless too.
Ginger: That sounds amazing
Ginger: So I see since this is essentially the subject of the curriculum Drukama.com. Can you tell us a little bit about what’s going on at the website right now?
Daishi: There’s so much going on. So we’re just creating the content that’s going into this curriculum teachings area. We have a bunch of new content that’s going into what we call The Vault that’s coming up. It’s these little kinds of interviews with myself about my own process so you can kind of sneak in and hear about what happened to me specifically through the phases of that. We have these interviews that tie in with practitioners that are called The Cauldron and we love those. Those are exciting and fun, and we kind of hear from the practitioners themselves and what they’ve experienced and gone through. And we have supportive teachings that help to impact the direct curriculum, and so everything there is really based on just providing any kind of esoteric seeker all the tools they need from start to finish to go through this process one step at a time at their own pace at home, and that’s something that I think is important to discuss and educate people about because there’s so much misunderstanding in this niche.
Ginger: And there’s a whole group of practitioners there who have been through parts of this process as well that provide support.
Daishi: Absolutely hundreds there that have gone through some heavy parts of this and are about to go through even heavier and bigger parts, so those particular practitioners are a huge source of inspiration and teaching and knowledge to everybody that’s going through it from the starting point forward and that’s really important.
Ginger: I think we can wrap it up here. Thank you so much for joining us today Daishi.
Daishi: Thank you for having me, I had a great time. I look forward to talking to you again on a future podcast.
Ginger: Thanks you too. If anyone has any questions or comments about the show you can email us at email@example.com. That’s radio @ D-R-U-K-A-M-A dot com. You can also find us in all the usual places on social media. Just search for Drukama Teachings. The transcript for the show is also available on Drukama.com. Thanks everyone for joining us for today’s show. We look forward to seeing you next time.