Sunday, January 23, 2011

A Look at Universal Consciousness and beyond

Life can be understood as a kind of dream.
Universal consciousness is the source, creative imagination is its nature.
The source dreams.

Life before death is part of the dream; life after passing is another part.

What we believe determines what happens or is experienced after birth and after death.

When fully enlightened we know we were never born.
The dream in its never ending variety and drama continues, but we in our essence simply witness it.

The enlightened know themselves as pure being. They perceive that all so-called knowledge is knowledge in one form or another of the dream and ultimately illusory, temporary or - relative to the non-changing ultimate state - simply false.

The mind accesses memories and based on these imagines a universe of space and time, or objects and events. Memory gives existence and continuity to a universe. Neither memory nor its contents are the Real.

Anything that can be placed in memory or recalled from memory is temporary or momentary reality. The absolute source is not something that can be known and then occupy a place in memory.

This is a paradox. All experiences can and do reside in memory. But the absolute while attainable is not an experience. You cannot know the absolute, but you can become it. It is a state that makes experience and memories possible, but it is prior. The doorway to the absolute is universal consciousness.

Universal consciousness is primary in any universe or creation, all contents of that universe can be understood as analogous to waves in the sea. Consciousness itself is what we are invited to deepen and broaden.

The ordinary mind can only see what moves in creation, what vibrates or changes. Therefore from the mind’s point of view we can accept waves on the sea of life as ever moving patterns in consciousness, their source arising from memories of previous universes. We can witness and marvel at their endless permutations, but the sea (what contains all potential expressions) is primary and what we must initially seek.

Identity with the ocean leads to that which makes even the ocean itself possible (the absolute beyond).

Universal consciousness is perfect order, beauty and harmony. Such harmony inherent in the universal is called Sattva guna in the Vedic teachings.

The universal state is formed most basically of spirit (purusha) and matter (prakriti). These give rise to infinite intelligence, love and light (infinite mind or universal heart, each is or contains the other).

Within infinite mind are the sensory, memory and thought potentials, the intellect and ego (a perceiving center); and also the infinite mind contains the five elements (earth, water, fire, air and ether). All of these give rise to a universe and are contained in the universal field of awareness (which is made possible by the ultimate substratum, the unknowable, un-namable, indescribable Absolute).

What we commonly think of as our “self” is a bundle of memories, fears, desires and hopes. It is the result of identifying with the reflection in mind of our true essence; a reflection that appears in time and space but is not our ultimate nature. Past and future exist in the mind only. The Real gives them momentary reality. The Real is our natural state. The Real should be our goal.

What exists most fundamentally is the light of awareness. It is the heart of universal awareness. The fact it exists means that there is something even more basic, more fundamental. But that which is more fundamental does not exist, though it makes existence and the light of awareness possible.

The pure light is the doorway to this ultimate order of reality. Seek the door first; it will open to that which is beyond of its own accord. Focus or meditate on the subtle sense of I am within your awareness. This will lead to the pure light and ultimately that more basic dimension from which it emerges.

Experience has a beginning and end. Experience occurs within the absolute, but the absolute has no beginning or end. Infinite possibilities do exist within the universal self (the universal consciousness, the Light of Life).

But it is not our false “self” or bundle of memories and desires that actualizes the potentials of the universal self within.

The universal actualizes its potentials by Itself, within its Self. We are invited to witness the machinations and absurdities of our little self (our ego and all of its false attachments) as a means to transmute its grip, to dissolve its influence in directing our lives. This allows us to become a witness to the motion of the universal element as it endlessly flows, creates and actualizes its powers. This puts our true Essence in charge, so to speak. At least it starts the process.

Our ultimate source will never be found among things, among that which can be experienced, possessed or remembered. It is prior.

God is the totality of universal consciousness; the Self when experienced in its pure and natural state is that universal source. When God is experienced face to face, the self and the creator merge. This is a precondition to awareness of the absolute. Merging with the absolute is the final motion. The absolute makes God or universal consciousness (with all its contents) possible.

Refinement of perception allows subtler states of consciousness to come into experience. But a body of some form (whether gross or etheric) is required to experience the various potential states of consciousness. No body, no experience is possible.

The world is real in the sense it appears and disappears in consciousness. The error made by most humans is in the interpretation of the world. The world is not in reality separate from our self, though we imagine it to be so. Ultimately we are its source and it is contained within our consciousness. But this experience we must grow into, by removing what is false within.

This requires witnessing our thoughts and emotional states; marveling at their power to control and compel our desires and actions.

Witnessing dissolves the grip of mental and emotional conditioning. This allows greater light to shine within, to guide our actions to meet the need of each moment.

This is the path we are invited to walk. This leads to greater peace of mind, to integrity and authenticity, to acceptance of the inevitable, and to compassion for all creatures. This leads to the lifting of veils and ever unfolding miracles in consciousness. Through this we learn the road itself is the goal.

And as the universal seems to unfold in our consciousness, we find that life grows spontaneously in happiness, bliss, wisdom, contentment and beauty. These qualities are the reflection in consciousness of the absolute; from their experience we can infer the substratum beyond. When we’ve ripened sufficiently, we rotate into a new dimension – we become the absolute.

That which looks like spirit, mind and body is the bridge; it makes the spectrum possible. The knower and the known are contained in the process of knowing. They are all one.

We are invited to realize that it is our character that shapes our destiny; and when will and love pull together anything is possible. Transmute character by melting it in the fire of the I Am, the Real will emerge on its own.

Friday, June 11, 2010

We believe what we know and know what we believe...experience is the crucial factor

Today we want to take a look at one of the core teachings of the eternal wisdom traditions. That teaching is: intellectual knowledge of various metaphysical truths (which amounts to a belief in concepts) has its place in the Divine Plan, but until such beliefs are supplemented by conscious experiences of various dimensions of reality that validate them, all are of limited value.

Their value while remaining on the level of mental agreement is essentially theoretical and generally of little if any immediate practical use.

Ultimately we are after an experience of deeper realities, not a belief or teaching.

We may be told by a sage for example that we are not our body, senses, mind, emotions or ego; that in our essence we are pure eternal spirit. And on that core level of our being we are beyond change, beyond birth and death, ever humble, loving and contented, filled with boundless joy and both a servant of and witness to the miracle of creation. That we are at our center both creation and its source, ever being and ever becoming, and yet simultaneously something even beyond these.

Well hearing of such higher realities is well and good. In fact hearing of them is essential at some point so we can realize that, according to some very wise people either currently living or who lived prior to our arrival on the planet, we all have the potential of unfolding, growing and ultimately achieving an infinitely more fulfilling and meaningful life, relative to the one we’re living now.

But the key insight we are trying to impart here is this: nothing is more important than an immediate conscious experience of “fact” or “value”.

Now in the eternal wisdom tradition “fact” or “value” means “living energy”. Such “facts” are relative truths. They are necessary and inevitable stepping stones that ultimately lead to absolute truth.

But for most of us absolute truth is still a fair ways off (until it is no longer a ways off, which happens when something clicks inside, when consciousness shifts or awakens and we realize absolute truth -- or something approaching it -- was ever available in every instance. But it is ever available only when we experience it as ever available; before this experience it’s a theoretical truth and seems to be a ways off. One of the paradoxes of the metaphysical journey).

To reiterate, mental knowledge and beliefs have their value, but it is the experience of the reality a concept points to that is of prime importance.

We are invited to experience such realities (which will unfold through a series of inner discoveries) through any avenue we are naturally drawn to; for many these will include: meditation, living with integrity and practicing spiritual techniques, through art and artistic expression, through scientific study leading to a deeper understanding of the unity of natural laws, through loving relationships and compassionate service to our fellow human beings, and through disciplines of realization.

Metaphysically we would say that if you are aware of the “facts” of a matter or realize the true value in a person, painting or song; in a tree or flower; a bird or butterfly, a planet or star, or in the laws of electrodynamics or gravity ... in all cases you have discovered in some measure on the basis of inner experience the living energy present in all forms and phenomena in both the human and natural world.

And further that ultimately it is the same energy in any of its infinite expressions, and that any sense of separation we experience or feel with regard to minerals, trees, furry things, stars or other people is the product of ego consciousness and indicates our identity is still derived from a fictional self within us.

What is our first step in dissolving or dis-identifying with the fictional self or ego? Cultivating Faith. Faith in a Divine Plan. Faith along with the practice of the disciplines of realization leads to the discovery of facts, of values (those principles that are of greatest importance in life), and ultimately to illumination.

Illumination is realization, the conscious participation in the truth that the universe is in its essence a great unity and in its surface expressions exactly as it should and must be at every instance.

In a world or universe founded on two coequal principles, Law and Love, it cannot be anything but. And all who are working on a human level for its apparent transformation from a mixture of good and evil to a state where all opposites are harmonized are doing exactly what they should and must be doing at every moment, confirmation that all is well and wisely set.

The eternal teachings tell us that knowable reality is an ever changing reality on the basis of a never changing ground state. The world changes as the individual changes, facts (living energies and living truths) emerge as we remove what is false, dysfunctional and immature in ourselves, there is no other way.

Faith (initially a conviction that Truth exists and that a quality of this unchanging principle is ever available to our intuition, providing each step of the way a measure of protection and guidance commensurate with our attunement) is crucial throughout our spiritual journey, especially at the beginning – processes of purification (transmuting our conditioned reflexes and soul traumas) and living with integrity must follow.

Living the disciplines to the best of our ability evolves the inner understanding necessary to an advancing practice. We are building a bridge seemingly from here to there out of the substance of the goal. Faith, confidence and a good hope will see us through.

Seek out the spiritual tools and techniques that you intuitively sense will help you access and unfold Faith as a living energy and your ultimate success is assured. Time, patience and discipline will also be required, until they aren’t … at which point you are the qualities necessary to the moment.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Basic metaphysical terms defined...

After a considerable break since the last post, I now wish to start offering a series of posts on a number of metaphysical and spiritual topics. In my experience all spiritual teachers possessing an authentic measure of enlightened consciousness are basically teaching the same core principles.

The angle of approach each takes, along with the words and metaphors used will of course vary. Enlightened teachers give answers appropriate to the needs and questions of their audience at the moment they speak. How they answer a question in one instance may be wholly contradicted by an answer in a different context asked by a different person. They give the answer each student or disciple needs to hear at a particular moment in time.

This is one reason you can find scriptures in all religious texts that support any point of view and virtually any course of action. Such is the phenomenal world of relativity. Our goal is to integrate in consciousness a harmonizing element that allows differences to co-exist without creating a loss of serenity or peace of mind; a state where each value or quality of consciousness (intelligence, creativity, vision, patience, compassion, grace, justice, courage, intuition, wisdom, etc) that may be required in a given situation can be expressed to meet a need, without the loss of inner equanimity. Such expressions and associated actions when generated by intuition will serve the greater good and a larger Divine Plan. More on this later.

It must be apparent to most of us that we are required to spiritually or intuitively discern how teachings frequently presented in another age and cultural context apply today. This we can all do with training and practice.

Most students wishing to explore more refined layers of their being, and learn as well the art of living graciously in a material world largely incapable of bestowing meaningful security and serenity of spirit, frequently look to some form of deity for salvation or protection, or a past or present master, teaching or tradition for guidance.

Nothing wrong with this of course. Not every student wishing to grow and evolve will need a tradition to join or teacher to follow, but the majority I believe will benefit from the insights of certain wise soul’s that have gone before and shared their discoveries.

So whether one is imbibing wisdom by reading the writings of trusted teachers or simply following one’s instincts and reading the ever available “Book of Nature”, the perennial wisdom tradition invites all so engaged to use intuitive discernment to sense the message and guidance appropriate now, and the course of action best suited to the circumstances in the present moment.

And then act. Taking action required to meet duties and responsibilities life has given us is also essential. Inaction when a need for action is evident is according to metaphysics a violation of natural law; equally, gross action when silence or stillness is the call of circumstances is also a violation of the natural order.

Finally, the author wishes to state for the record that I’ll do my best to pass on the insights I’ve been privileged to learn, acknowledging straight away they aren’t mine but come from a state of consciousness far beyond my current level of awareness. I am without question far from enlightened and like most in the audience a perennial student.

As such in all of my posts I claim no originality or credit for principles, concepts or teachings conveyed. The credit if deserved goes to those enlightened souls that have shared in one form or another their wisdom and from whom I’ve had the privilege of learning something meaningful, often times something I firmly believe is profound. Any errors or misinterpretations of the teachings of the wisdom traditions posted here are mine of course.

Let’s start now by defining a few basic terms. These definitions are “working definitions” and are not fixed or set in stone. Words can never truly describe or convey the deeper secrets of existence, let alone absolute truth.

But to educate ourselves we have to use words and metaphors that help us understand abstract realities and why pursuing and living various metaphysical disciplines are worth the effort. Our goal is the conscious inner experience of deeper realities, not just learning descriptions or images of them, or beliefs about them.

Therefore no claim is made that any definition, principle or teaching presented is “absolute truth”, though I give them with the firm conviction based on my experiences that they have the potential to point any sincere and earnest student in the direction that will lead inevitably to the experience of their own true and absolute nature. Or more accurately to the inevitable dawning within of a new order of reality which makes the experience of the absolute possible.

Ultimately, all will learn that nothing is more important than Faith in this process, and we will discuss the role of faith more fully in later posts.

Truth: absolute truth is indefinable; one cannot “know” truth, yet one can ultimately become It. A working definition of truth is: “that which never changes”. In the relative sphere of existence where by definition change is the only constant, there can only be “relative truth”. The truth all humans “know” is relative; absolute truth can only be “known” on its own level, when the absolute possesses us.

Meditation: an effortless process to experience the infinite, or ever changing (vibration) within the never changing (silence). There are many forms; each student will practice the form they value or are naturally drawn to. Meditation can be said to include both contemplation and experience of divine realities. It can be practiced in some form at every moment. Key point: rightly understood it should not involve effort.

Realization: the simultaneous understanding and acceptance of the rightness of the universe as it is; that all things are infused with spirit and serve a divine purpose. Realization is not an intellectual state or mental concept, it is not simply the belief that all is well and wisely placed and as it inevitably must be (though paradoxically these statements are true on their own level); but more deeply it is a mystical, intuitive knowing; a conscious participation in the breath of a living energy that informs creation and forever sings the song of Space.

Discipline: an effortless directing of personal thought and action which leads to an inward realization of right and a transmutation of one’s whole nature into a state of self-mastery. Ultimately discipline leads to illumination.

Illumination: an indescribable experience that comes upon elevation of our human nature to the realization of the Divine Plan. It starts with the dawning in consciousness of a greater spiritual light. It involves an endless process of awakening and a series of spiritual discoveries within ourselves. When fully illumined we have awakened to the innumerable aspects of Realization, we are enlightened….we stand before the face of Truth. We are worthy of merging with that state that makes all states possible. When this final merging with Truth will occur no man or woman knows. The sages say metaphorically that ultimately the absolute chooses us, we don’t choose it. A mystery of union.

Faith: a conviction or intuitive knowing that a guiding, benevolent and protecting principle or spirit infuses space and causes all things to ultimately work together for what is necessary, right and good. Faith at some point inevitably involves the fusing of courage with conviction. The difference between a mere belief in a God or Goddess and actual faith (which is a form of living energy) in these principles is the difference between night and day. Faith and faith alone sees us through the great tests of life.

Divine Plan: no human can define or know fully what the Divine Plan is, but the wise of every age convey that everyone has the capacity to sense that we are participants in a miracle of creation. And further each through practice of meditation and disciplines of realization can in time intuit more fully our place in a cosmic process involving the limitless unfoldment, expression and expansion of an infinite consciousness.

We are invited to thoughtfully give allegiance to those beliefs that demonstrably create a feeling of truth, integrity and value to the life we are currently living. And authentic faith should lead to transformative experiences that lessen worry, fear and doubt; and strengthen serenity of spirit, resulting in ever unfolding experiences of Realization.

Happiness, tranquility, security and eternal life – and liberation from all that is false, sorrowful and unnecessary – ultimately come from serving and cooperating with the plan, living with integrity and compassion, and in general living in harmony with the inevitable laws and rhythms of nature herself.

In sum The Divine Plan seems to be an Entity that is some type of primordial awareness that expresses through triads of energy, intelligence and form. It is a great unity and functions per a pattern of laws imbued with love, and we are all in essence one with It.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

2010 - Metaphysical Insights - part 1

There is a world of abstract realities. A world where the unity of consciousness is always in perfect accord with the diversity of space and form.

Where the Law forever maintains harmony and balance between spirit and matter. Where a peculiar quality of consciousness we call intellect discerns the apparent structure of the absolute or never changing sphere of existence as well as the relative or ever changing sphere of life.

And as we grow we come to realize on the basis of personal experience that what the mind experiences as separate or as a gap between the never moving and ever moving, the heart bridges or connects, proving the essential unity of all things.

These are some of the foundational teachings of the eternal wisdom traditions. One could elaborate forever on the nuances and paradoxes that flow from these simple basic statements of apparent truth.

We say “apparent” truth, because the timeless wisdom tradition invites us to understand that all “truth” is relative until one undergoes a transformation of consciousness that results in the dawning of a new order of reality within our awareness; one where we do not know Truth, but we become It.

In sum we can say for now that there is unmanifest spirit and manifest spirit, unmanifest form and manifest form, unmanifest matter and manifest matter, unmanifest intelligence and manifest intelligence …. and love is the conscious experience of the unity of them all.

And for completeness we can add that there is “something” prior to every concept and principle we have mentioned above. To talk about this ultimate state we have to use words, yet no words or descriptions or concepts can ever convey what it is.

We may say this “something prior” is really “no-thing”, a void or state that makes all things possible, but is none of its apparent expressions. It contains the possibility and includes the fullness of both spirit and matter within Itself, yet it is neither, yet both are a hypothetical speck within its inexpressible profundity.

This state then is the unknowable, at least in the ordinary sense of the word “know”. It cannot be described because it is unconditioned. Yet it can be known, but only on its own level. The wise say “It selects you, you don’t select It”. But these are only words. Absorption into the ultimate occurs when all that is false within consciousness has been transmuted allowing that which is True and Real in an ultimate sense to emerge of Its own accord.

This is a brief overview of ultimate reality as offered for individual consideration by the eternal wisdom traditions. In this blog over time we will explore in more detail the foundational principles that appear to govern Space and all it contains.

But now, let us begin to bring the eternal metaphysical teachings down to earth a bit and learn how we can on a practical level begin to remove the false in our own consciousness and, little by little, refine our character and move in the direction that allows the conscious experience of some measure of the abstract realities the wise of all ages invite us to pursue through disciplines of realization.

Most of us are well aware we have not experienced the ultimate of anything. Perhaps we have had a few hints and glimpses, but most of us are standing on the shore of a great ocean with the goal somewhere far across the great expanse, beyond the distant horizon. At least this is how it appears to most of us; if we can slip at any moment in any instant beneath our conditioning, we stand on all shores simultaneously. Ah but that is the great challenge isn’t it!

So all is and appears exactly as it should and must be, for the entire universe is governed by laws of nature.

Everything is inevitably what it is and as it is, because it is necessary and inevitable; it is per the operation of cosmic law. Anything that is necessary and therefore inevitable is philosophically speaking: “good”. Good in this sense does not necessarily mean that which is pleasant, enjoyable, convenient or comfortable. It means that which is inevitable as a result of immutable Law.

Our bodies, senses, minds, feelings and egos (in total all of the etheric parts of the soul) are under these laws, like everything else. All products of consciousness however coarse or refined, however material or ethereal, are under the laws of creation. Our ultimate essence however is not.

We are trying now to convey a sense of the journey we are all apparently undertaking. A journey where we gain the courage, faith and conviction to remove what is untrue within our consciousness, so what remains, whatever it is, can emerge to fulfill its own purposes through us. So we can serve wisely, spontaneously and intuitively the need of every moment; yet be simultaneously beyond change, forever free of bondage to the cycle of birth and death, free of the reflexive control of memories, habits and desires.

We can note here too that the sages convey there is nothing wrong with memories, habits and desires as long as we control them and not vice versa. Any function or quality of life that serves the power that gives rise to existence and furthers the expansion of consciousness is in service to the totality and not the false center of egoic awareness that believes it is separate from the whole, that believes it is an isolated fragment in a hostile world.

Mind, memories and desires are appropriate servants when serving the miracle of creation and its inherent purposes, but tyrannical masters when our identity is derived from investing them with a false sense of self.

The end of human suffering and selfishness will come only when we have clear insight into their causes. A primary goal of writing this blog is to convey over time (as best my understanding allows) a series of insights from metaphysics that when truly realized and applied (even if initially only to a tiny degree) can greatly assist anyone receptive in leading a life that is characterized by greater peace, serenity, wisdom, beauty, understanding and compassion.

The First Insight: we as individuals are invited to seek what is of true Value in life. To seek and give our allegiance to that which is of greatest importance. To that which brings individual well-being yet simultaneously contributes equally to collective well-being.

The sages in all ages have taught that it isn’t so much divine strength and universal law that holds the universe together, but infinite love. It is valid to say that law is love and love is law, that they are two sides of one coin, yet the rationalization of our convictions are often best sustained by the great power of emotional devotion which is the bond of affection that holds the fabric of existence together.

We are invited then to consider that initially what is of greatest value is Love, and to seek daily or hourly an experience of the universal benevolence that ties all life together.

It is an experience we are seeking, not an idea, image or concept.

Why is it that every plant on earth rises from decayed organic matter to meet the sunlight. If we are intuitively open we can sense a beautiful truth – the flower or tree can’t become fruitful without first falling in love with the light.

Whatever a breeze touches it loves. Snow and rain bear no ill will, they fall lovingly no matter their intensity.

Doesn’t a bird sing from its heart its contentment and love of being.

The caring, tenderness and compassion we offer or witness one human to another is a reflection of spirit in motion – which is Love.

The first insight then is simply that the world is filled with endless opportunities to experience universal love. This love is an eternal blessing, a protecting and guiding presence.

What we come to know is that even though people, birds, trees and flowers go through the inevitable processes of birth, growth, maturity and decay….the love that sends all of them into expression is eternal. For this we are ever grateful; it is love that has an eternal integrity, not the ever changing form that is its momentary expression.

Love is often defined in the wisdom traditions as an experience of the unity of life. It is not a belief in the unity of things, but a direct conscious experience that your essence and my essence are not separate but one; and even a stone, insect, fish or planet share in the root awareness.

An experience of this level of Love is of greatest value on the way to the ultimate, that state which makes Love itself possible. This level of love is experienced as a result of purification within of what is false, crude, primitive, immature and unreasonable. Such purification is the result of self-discipline and meditation, of practicing the metaphysical disciplines of realization.

The first of these disciplines is conveyed in the second insight.

The Second Insight: hardness, intolerance and anger in ourselves stimulate the same in the world around us. And the negativity in others will excite the same negative energies in our consciousness, unless we have transmuted these energies so they have limited or ideally no reflexive control over our thoughts, feelings or behaviors.

In other words the world will soften only as we soften. The world will become peaceful, tolerant and forgiving only when we are tolerant and forgiving.

We must remember a simple truth: the only one we can change is our self. Other people are going to do what they do, say what they will; be sensitive and caring or be cruel and hurtful. In all cases we have no ultimate control over their inner and outer states, thoughts or behaviors.

As imperfect creatures ourselves, generally the best we can do is reduce our own contributions to the misery and problems of the world.

This we do by dissolving the negativity and errors in ourselves; at the least we can start the process.

This is accomplished in large part by witnessing every emotional state we experience.

In practice it works like this. Someone says or does something that makes you Annoyed or irritated. Angry or even livid. Embarrassed or humiliated. Hurt and betrayed. Dumb or stupid. Jealous or envious. Prideful and superior. Weak or inferior. Ashamed or guilty.

The spectrum of potential feelings of superiority, shame, annoyance, betrayal or anger are endless of course. We’ve all experienced countless versions of these, at least to one degree or another.

The important point: when any of these mental or emotional states arise in you, you are at least momentarily in their grip. They represent mental and emotional conditioning – in you and in another.

They are energy states stored within your subjective nature and in the subjective nature of someone you are interacting with. They are excited as a result of a kind of resonance that takes place between energies in your magnetic field and those of similar frequency or nature in the other.

When a conditioned energy state is excited for any reason in another person, any similar state in you, no matter how dormant it may have been, is to some degree excited. It is evidence of a capacity yet within you to think, feel or act in the same way as the person who is upsetting you. Such excitations exert a measure of involuntary control over your thoughts, feelings, speech and behavior, for some period of time, however short or long.

Such excitations in you (which cause a loss of inner serenity, harmony and peace of mind) are an invitation from the universe to become aware of conditioning within you that needs dissolution.

It may well be that the conditioning and energy states in the other person need transmuting also, but only the other person can decide for himself or herself whether they wish to engage in the process. You are responsible for transmuting falsehoods and dysfunction in yourself alone; your evolving state may in time be an inspiration that causes others to begin the process in themselves. But only they can bring about a transformation of their consciousness, no one else can do it for them.

In these periods then where reflexes are controlling your thoughts and feelings, you are not acting based on reason or intuition, but on the influence of generally unconscious emotional patterns stored in that part of your ego structure that houses memories, habits and beliefs…all of which form conditioned, repetitive response patterns that arise in you when stimulated by life events.

During these events you inevitably experience the stimulation of some set of conscious or subconscious memories that relate to early or prior life conditioning experiences. These experiences frequently involve major issues relating to trust, responsibility, integrity, physical or emotional trauma, tyranny, abandonment or betrayal. The details change from event to event, but the fundamental dysfunctional or wounding theme can seemingly repeat forever.

Here’s some examples: perhaps you never got along with your mother or father; sister or brother; or authority figures in general. You marry someone who is in effect an incarnation of one of these figures. They push the same buttons as the earlier versions: perhaps they are too controlling, too withholding, too cold or insensitive, too smothering, to limiting, too irresponsible or too critical.

Whatever the theme or core issue, they re-excite the core wound. They may never change what they say or do, though you certainly can ask them to. In the end you generally learn or are invited to learn that the only one who can change the dynamic or the effect you experience within….is you.

When any scenario akin to this occurs, you are under the control of your fictional self. The “self” in you that is conditioned by past experiences. These past experiences include earlier experiences from this life; as well as what can be called karmic habits, trauma and reflexes developed and stored during previous lifetimes.

In sum we can say the reactions you feel are the result of mental and emotional reflexes stored in the bundle of memories that constitute the bulk of your ego nature. These conditioned reflexes of anger or shame or humiliation or pride are not “you”. They are not your essential nature. They are part of the nature of a false self within you. This is what the wisdom traditions invite you to recognize and begin to transmute.

Transmutation starts by witnessing all emotional states that disrupt your inner experience of tranquility. Any experience that destroys your inner calm and serenity is one that is giving rise to a conditioned energy state in you.

And this conditioned state has some degree of control of your thoughts and behavior until you allow it to dissipate. When you are no longer under the grip of such a reflexive state, your intuition can guide you to the right action needed in the moment. This is the beginning of the operation of true free will.

This is the goal. Dissolution of the control of one’s behavior by conditioned mental and emotional reflexes and the restoration of control of one’s life to the spirit within, which will generate an intuitive response to any circumstance in life; a response based on guidance from one’s higher soul nature.

This is a state where ultimately the unconditioned mind has spontaneous leadership over every phase and moment of life.

To recap: all humans are effectively a bundle of conditioned memories, habits and beliefs. These give rise to who we believe we are, but this is not who we “really” are. These form a false or fictitious self that is fundamentally ignorant of divine purpose and divine love. Our essence is unconditioned; our current conscious allegiance is not to it but to the ego structure.

The sages of all ages invite us to learn the disciplines of realization that allow one to lessen the grip of these conditioned states within us. These disciplines ultimately lead to dissolution of what is false in our minds and hearts; this allows what is true and real in this universe (and beyond) to reveal itself spontaneously.

This process is greatly facilitated by doing our best to not act while in the grip of a mental or emotional reflex. But in any situation where events and circumstances are pushing our buttons, causing us to lose our natural state of calm and serenity, we are invited to do the following: before acting, speaking or responding … simply witness our feelings first, and when equilibrium is restored, then act to the degree we reasonably can from a state of intuitive calm, allowing our natural resourcefulness, awareness, creativity, vision and comprehension to meet the needs of the moment.

Through this processes, we don’t deny, bury or resist any emotional state that comes into our awareness. We simply feel it and witness it until it begins to dissolve. We can have anger and a feeling we’d like to dent the other person’s head with a two by four; and that’s fine as long as we don’t act on it. The teaching is: have any feelings that bubble up in you, but don’t act on them until you are calm and your intuition so guides you.

Through this process of witnessing, we will slowly lessen the grip our conditioned reflexes have on us and dissolve the false egoic nature we are out of ignorance identified with.

The key insight: we are not our minds, we are not thoughts, we are not memories, we are not conditioned emotional reflexes, we are not habits, we are not beliefs or concepts. We are in our essence unconditioned spirit, eternally blissful and contented, that forever serves the universe out of love; something beyond what we think we are, yet something that makes all conditioned existence possible. Life and Truth are a mystery and unity that can only reveal their ultimate nature to themselves. We can be the witness to the process. Ultimately we can become the unknowable itself. The invitation is to unravel the mystery through disciplines of realization.

More insights and examples of how to apply metaphysical principles to improve the quality of one’s individual life, as well as planetary life, in the next post.

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Big Questions and Where We're Going with this ....

This blog will be a little tablet in space for dreaming and allowing the imagination and intuition to tap into currents and streams of symbols, insights, images and words that come from somewhere just a little before or beyond the ordinary levels of mind and feeling, perhaps in some measure from a deep and hidden well where the waters of Space ever flow, gently and peacefully, forever unfolding and nourishing the spirit in us all.

Here I'll explore and share my take on metaphysics and the many aspects of what we'll call idealistic philosophy. So whether you're naturally drawn to a similar investigation of life and way of understanding the world, or just curious about such topics, please (always in a respectful and civil way) join in the fray and add your two cents when so moved.

My hope is we'll learn something meaningful and useful together. Something that not only supports our deeper convictions, but most importantly something that adds to our peace of mind and enjoyment of life in practical ways each and every day.

Overtime we'll explore a considerable diversity of topics. We'll cover the "perennial philosophy", myths, comparative religion, eastern and western mysticism and world views, astrology and astrotheology, and various spiritual principles and practices that when applied in daily life quickly justify the initial leap of faith required.

This approach won't be for everyone, but for those so drawn welcome aboard.

There certainly have been some very wise people who lived prior to our arrival on the planet. There are inevitably a few enlightened souls in every generation, even this present one where general conditions are perhaps more dire than any time in the current collective memory.

Now perhaps more than ever humankind seems to stand on a precipice with the very survival of the species possibly hanging in the balance.

There is a lot of good in the collective consciousness, and in the end I think we will muddle through, figuring out a way to increase our understanding, lesson our intolerance, appreciate or respect our differences, and ultimately mitigate the seemingly intractable inharmonies manifest over the range of life, from vexatious family disputes; to political and corporate corruption and greed; to regional, even international grievances, disputes and wars.

I believe that the wisdom traditions that on some level forever exist will play a significant role in our individual and collective salvation, in what sees us through (the next 10-15 years especially).

When rightly understood the perennial esoteric teachings can guide us to an inner experience of a harmonizing element, a silent and sacred presence that is not only our individual essence but brings us in touch with that level of life that ties all life together.

This presence in us all when consciously experienced can allow the diversity of cultures, religions, beliefs and traditions to co-exist in relative harmony and understanding. Let all so inclined seek the release (through the teachings sacred to them) of this soul light that is the great illuminator the world so desperately needs.

The wise in all cycles of time have shared incredibly penetrating insights into reality, nature and how to live with greater harmony, purpose and serenity amidst the endless pressures, challenges, opportunities, and competitive attitudes and relationships that comprise ordinary human life on this planet.

As indicated I will be giving over time a kind of distillation of my understanding of these insights and teachings. Please also pass on through comments your own.

I am also writing a book entitled "The Eternal Wisdom Teachings". I will make draft chapters available in some format in the near future.

Let's see where this adventure leads.

If our motives are pure, our intent innocent and sincere .... I have no doubt the affection we have for that great power at the source of life, for all beings in heaven and earth, and our sincere dedication to pursuing and ultimately becoming Truth itself will inevitably lead us to greater peace of mind, and a nobler and more fulfilling way of living and being.

A life based on a greater measure of loving, giving, sharing, and cooperating, and a more harmonious participation in the adventure of creation and the eternal quest for liberation and ultimate meaning.

Why not have the audacity to pursue it!

We'll jump into an introduction to The Divine Plan in the next post.