Again, re-posting this from another forum ... please excuse the repetition for those who may participate in both.
Speaking of dreams, one revealed to me last night that the separate self is really just the culturally conditioned self — i.e. there is no sense of separation, except that conditioning makes it so.
So, initially at least, the non-dual realization would simply be seeing through the ‘dream’ of one’s conditioning — the lifting of the proverbial veil — revealing the essence of the unconditioned Self that was of course always there. And since the conditioning is very difficult, stubborn, and almost impossible to shake completely (perhaps even genetically programmed to some extent), the apparent separate self carries on regardless, doing its thing, while the Original Self starts naturally ‘living’ or be-ing, no longer buying into the program, so to speak, free to explore its unconditional, limitless, creative potential … hence liberation.
And so the separate self vs. no-self dilemma would be resolveded. Post-realization, one is paradoxically and simultaneously embodied as both, without contradiction. The so-called problem only arises when one identifies or forms an attachment with one, to the exclusion of the other — which of course is just more separation.
end of this story … for now.