Ep 3 Duality vs. Non Duality

Hello my friend. Welcome to the One Heart Podcast. I’m your host Brooke Snow, and I’m so grateful to have you here.

In this episode we’re going to talk about what the difference is between duality and non duality. I like to think of duality as similar to polarity. It’s living in a black and white experience of life. Non duality is learning to close the gap between polarities to achieve wholeness. If we desire to live with One Heart, this is an important concept to understand.

Before we begin, I invite you to join me in a three breath meditation
on to settle into your own heart.

Breathing in, come back into awareness of your body and descend to your heart.

Breathing in, opening your heart.

Breathing in, embody the love that is always inside you.

Thank you, friends for joining me for the One Heart podcast.

Okay, duality vs. Nonduality. I had never actually heard of these words until about six years ago.

I wrote a book that was published in 2018 called Living in Your True Identity. The premise of the book was all about how we have two identities. One is true and one is false.

I had this woman reach out to me at least three times asking to interview me for her podcast to talk about my book. But when I visited her website to learn about her message her site was all about non-duality. I didn’t even know what that word meant so I looked it up and was confused.

Nonduality is a oneness of self and a oneness with all things. At the time, it felt like my worldview was exactly opposite.

My book was all about the true self and the false self. Yet nonduality seemed to contradict my book.
“I can’t go on her podcast”, I thought. “I think I believe the opposite!”

I believed in the true self and the false self. Basically, I believed in a divided self.
I saw the world in black and white.
I believed in righteous and unrighteous people.
I judged everything in the world as good or bad, true or false, light or dark, black or white.
I saw everything in duality.

Nonduality felt threatening to me and like it was out of control and messing with the clear boundaries I had drawn for everything in the world. I feared this strange word and so I consistently didn’t respond to her invitations to be interviewed. I just ignored what I didn’t understand.

Fast forward to today after I have spent significant time studying Eastern Religions and Philosophies like Buddhism, Hinduism, Yoga, and Meditation. Now I understands what non duality means and better yet, the fruit that can come from this perception and belief.

I’ve now reframed how I think of the self.
I no longer see the false self and the true self as dueling opposites or enemies.
Instead, I see them as two selves that are meant to become one.
I see the false self as the wounded or human parts of who we are. The self who needs healing and love to be restored to wholeness.
In this regard, I see nonduality as my ultimate goal. Nonduality is to experience a wholeness of self that we talked about in the last episode.

This wholeness or non duality applies not only internally to who I am, but it also applies to how I see others. I no longer want to see the world in duality either.

Us vs. them.
Righteous and the unrighteous.
Saved and not saved.
Politically left or politically right.
Pro or Anti anything.
Right thinking or Wrong thinking.

This is duality. It’s division.

Oneness is this beautiful space that exists in the middle of the opposites. It is the healing that joins two separated parts together. Oneness is a central theme that runs through Eastern teachings as well as the message of Jesus.

During the final moments of Jesus’s life as he prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane, he prays to God for people to be one, even as He was one with his Father.

This oneness or non duality is also reflected in the Lord’s Prayer when Jesus prays for God’s Kingdom to come on Earth as it is in Heaven. Some religions call this Zion. Others call this the New Earth. A place where people live with one heart. They’re one.

We begin to create a New Earth by finding this oneness first within ourselves.

Can I create unity with the two selves inside of me? Both my humanness and my divinity? My true self and my ego? Can I be of one heart and one mind within myself?

For most of my life I saw the human part of who I am as the part of me I was meant to overcome. It was the enemy I needed to be “saved” from.

I recently heard Father Richard Rohr speak and he clarified that the word Salvation actually means healing. He said, unfortunately, Christians have interpreted this word to mean winning. Like we have won or achieved a great reward of making it to heaven. But the true meaning of salvation is healing.

I find this incredibly beautiful and expansive. He also went on to say that salvation is collective, not just individual. Too often in the Western Christianity lens there is a limited and narrow view of salvation to mean winning and the focus is on how people can personally achieve salvation, not understanding that this whole idea of non duality means that I need to first find healing and oneness inside of me and then healing and oneness on the outside of me. I need to be one within myself and one with the rest of humanity. In this sense, salvation becomes a collective healing experience as well as individual.

The healing or salvation of our souls actually doesn’t exclude anyone or anything. Rather it includes. Talk about a paradigm shift of how I have always viewed salvation!

But how does one heal and experience this wholeness?

We have to learn how to create unity after all this division has occurred.

It’s important to realize that division is part of the process of learning and growth.
The joy of healing comes because we have had the experience of first being divided.
Division is part of the journey.

In the Biblical Creation Story, it says God spends the first several days of creation in division.

Day 1 he divides the light from the darkness.
Day 2 He divides the heavens from the earth.
Day 3 He divides the water from the dry land.

Then after this division occurs there comes phases of dominion, and ruling.

Day 4: He creates the greater light to RULE the day and the lesser light to RULE the night.
Day 5 and 6: He creates the fishes and fowls and animals and commands Adam to have DOMINION over them. To rule over them.

After all this division and ruling, God then creates the woman and commands Adam and Eve to be ONE. Now we have union.

Day 7 God rests and many people honor this day of rest as a sabbath a day of COMMUNION with God and each other.

The whole process of creation goes through this cycle of division, ruling and dominion, to finally a restful union.

I see this same cycle as a collective throughout history. Currently as a collective we are at a point of countless divisions of race, religion, politics, nationalities, and beyond.

We are at a point of feeling the oppression brought on by ruling and dominions in many forms. Government, patriarchy, religion, Media, Corporations, to name a few.

And now, we face the next part of the cycle which requires the emergence of the feminine and a union of all things.

When we transition to this union collectively we will then experience a time of rest. A time where we live in communion with God and one another. This will be an experience of a New Earth. A culmination of the creation of humanity.

I also see this same creation pattern on a micro level as an individual. I look back on my life experiences and see countless moments I have divided myself inside. How?

I’ve labeled and judged myself into many divided parts.
I see my strengths and weakness.
The good parts of me and bad parts.
My mistakes and achievements.
I see the division of my true beliefs and false beliefs.

So what have I done with all this internal division?
I have consequently strived to have dominion over myself.
I’ve often let my mind rule instead of my heart.
I’ve tried to have dominion over my feelings, judging them as good or bad and suppressing the supposedly bad thoughts and feelings in order to conquer them and rule over them.

And now… what do I desperately want and need?

Union. Oh blessed union. I need the divine feminine to rise within me to offer the healing and nurturing my soul so desperately needs. I crave the unity of taking all my divided parts and healing them into wholeness. Doing so delivers me to a place of rest and communion.

This concept of non-duality is not as scary as I used to think. I can understand why I was afraid of the idea before, because I was deep into the ruling over phase. I was deep into thinking if I just try hard enough, if I just perfect myself a little more, I will conquer the human woman inside me and cast her away. I will strive to let my divine self WIN out. I couldn’t yet see that the way to salvation wasn’t by eliminating or ruling over the parts I didn’t want to exist. It was by loving them into healing and becoming whole.
This same process exists on a collective level. Here too, it’s not about excluding people or ruling over them. It’s about loving them into healing, including them, and becoming of one heart and mind.

All of these stages serve a purpose.

Division serves a purpose.
Ruling over serves a purpose.
And it is all in preparation to create unity.

A unity in which all people are fully sovereign and no longer ruled over. And remember, when people are at one within themselves, it is a safe space to finally let go of the ruling structures because you are no longer divided. You are not divided internally or externally. The ego self and true self have healed and become one. Love is what guides now and not fear.

The collective only gets to this point after individuals, one by one venture there for themselves. This takes courage. These people are willing to pioneer the way for the rest of the collective who haven’t progressed here yet. It requires faith. It is a major disruption to deeply engrained patterns to start operating in love and unity when the external world doesn’t reflect that yet. But it is worth it.

This is the ultimate awakening happening across the world right now one by one as people wake up to who they really are, and it’s leading somewhere amazing.

So, to the lovely person who invited me on her podcast to talk about non-duality… Whoever you are, I am sorry it took me a five years to figure this out, but I’m finally starting to get it and now I’m ready to talk about it!

I admit, that coming to this understanding has required me to unlearn things. 40 years of dividing myself into good parts and bad parts, and 40 years of striving to rule over myself doesn’t disappear overnight.

I’ve spent my whole life viewing the world and salvation through duality. Changing this has been a process of letting go of patterns and ways of thinking that are powerfully engrained. I’ve had to let go of being ruled over and claim my sovereignty. Repeatedly. But the moments when I get a taste of this union and freedom are profoundly expansive. This my friends, is the next phase of creation.

You can be one inside yourself.
We can be one as a people.
We can move beyond the division and ruling. We can enter the stage of union.

This requires healing of the greatest kind. The at-one-ment is ultimately about bringing us to non-duality. We are healed into a unity of self and a unity as a people. This is how we build a New Earth. A people of One Heart.

If we return once more to the Biblical Creation Story, we see an emphasis in the garden of Eden on two different trees.

First we have the tree of life, and then we have the tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.

The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil is essentially the tree of duality. As you partake of the fruit of this tree you enter a world of opposites. You enter the world of polarity. It is black and white. It is the reality in which you learn judgement.

Partaking of the fruit of this tree is essential for our journey. We learn through our experiences how to judge.

But let us not forget the other tree. The Tree of Life.

This tree is the tree of non-duality. It is the tree that represents the Love of God. It is the tree of oneness and unity. It is the next part of the journey. For after you learn black and white judgement and how to divide everything into parts, you must then learn how to put it all back together again. We must learn how to become one again. This is at-one-ment. This is a central message of Jesus. You bring things into wholeness only through love. Love is not divided. Love is whole.

We can find this same journey in our own physiology inside our bodies.

When we live from a place of judgement, we are living in the mind. The brain is an organ that is divided. You have a right hemisphere of your brain and you have a left hemisphere of your brain. When you live in the mind, you live in duality. You see the world in black and white. You become an expert at judgement.

Eventually, our spiritual journey, invites us to ascend, by descending. We descend to the heart. We must learn to be led by our heart instead of a mind that is divided. Interestingly, the organ of the heart is one. It is not divided. It is whole.

There are some spiritual teachers who believe as we become more and more heart centered as a people, that the human race will eventually evolve and the two divided parts of the brain will merge into one. Similar to the caterpillar metamorphosis into a butterfly. I love this thought. This creates a person who is of one heart and one mind. A mind that is unified because it has learned how to fully love.

Richard Rudd recently said that in the future world to come, it is not going to be a story of the survival of the fittest, but rather the survival of the kindest.

The New Earth we are moving towards is a world of oneness. It may not seem like it right now. But if humanity continues on the path of judgement and division it will inevitably self destruct. The tree of knowledge of good and evil included the promise of death. If you stay in the world of duality and judgement you will surely die. You’ve probably already experienced this. When you are only living in judgement your relationships die, your health dies, our communities die.

Healing only comes through wholeness. It is the survival of the kindest. It is a world where we move beyond being ruled by judgement and enter a sovereign world where we free ourselves through love. We become one. This at-one-ment gives us access to the tree of life. We overcome death through the love of God.

My dear friend, are you ready to partake of the Tree of Life?

If so, I invite you to live from the Heart. One heart.Continue with me on the journey of this podcast as we learn together how to live with one heart. Let us be whole beings and grow our ability to love.

To conclude, I invite you into a one heart contemplation:

What is one thing in your life you are seeing in judgement? How does this thing look if you descend to your heart and see from here instead?

May you be peaceful.
May you be at one with yourself.
May you be one heart.



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