Being Itself is a compilation of a particular kind of interior language, written after I got back from India, after enjoying the presence and the awareness of H.W.L. Poonja, who was a teacher I didn’t seek but found. In his presence, I saw another human being speak what I knew to be true. In his presence, I witnessed doubt, that I didn’t know I carried, disappear. I’m not a disciple of his, and he’d be happy to know that, because he sought no disciples. His teaching, called Advaita, is the practice of no practices. These writings are as close to the kind of language that would exist if there were no religion, as far I am able to make them. Papaji said to me, ‘Nobody has ever been able to describe this, but don’t stop trying. You are a writer. Write from the source.’ He meant that I write as one who was not separate from the source, as the source speaking. I saw him speak, not as one speaking about being to others, but as being speaking to being. In his presence, I saw love pouring out toward itself. I’ve never seen that as clearly, in any other human being, before or since, but I believe it is the natural state of our existence and not confined to the people we hold up as teachers, gurus, and masters. If it’s true for anyone, it’s true for everyone. I have meant this writing as awareness itself speaking to one who is ready to live in his or her own awareness, because that’s how it came to me. That experience has lead me to address myself and the reader as you. This is the writing of one person who is open to his awareness, the same as anyone might be, so you is you, and me, and everyone else.