Friday, March 14, 2008

Life: The Understanding of Consciousness. Part 1

What we’re speaking about is not a religion, nor is it the perspective of a religious person. It is not new-age theory or even some ancient Indian thought system concerning the non-dual. It hasn’t been practiced or handed down from one guru to the next, nor is it some fanciful concepts strung together to lead one astray. It is simply a series of observations gathered from the practical, and truly functional, lifestyle of being aware of one’s own mind at work. Since one cannot be compelled to become aware of one’s mind, nor can one do so in the hopes of achieving some desired result, it is left to those who have a genuine interest in doing so. It is left to those who feel deeply that understanding one’s own makeup is in absolute line with the natural movement of life itself. Maybe you are one of those people.

There are human beings everywhere, but can there be said to be an individual consciousness for each human? Surely the memories of each individual are varied and starkly different, but when memories are not triggered in a particular moment, where is the line in consciousness between one body and the next? I’m sure we all can agree, the human body is a unique and individually arising phenomenon, but in regards to consciousness, and its many innate abilities...the ability to feel, to think, to remember, to be, is there any true difference, or line separating any one body from another? Every body born on Earth depends upon the very same objects for survival and it is this need to survive that drives one’s consciousness out into the world surrounding it. It is this outwardly experienced life, with its colors, shapes, variety, and infinitely subtle distinctions that transfixes the mind, holding its attention fixed on these outwardly experienced objects. For the mind, becoming intoxicated with the experience of this life, which it conceives as being separate from itself, begins to believe it is in fact a separate object, isolated and independent within a world of other transient objects. This belief is solidified when the mind discovers the limits and boundaries of the human body. This newly formed perspective begins to color one's reality more and more, and is repeatedly confirmed through the information being received from the body's sense of outward life. The mind begins to interpret that it must survive just as the body must, and therefore the connection between mind and body begins to take form.

The mind, through experience and time, actually identifies itself with the physical body and crystallizes the belief that they are one in the same. After more and more experience is translated through this newly formed frame of reference a separate 'I,’ creating a sense of ‘me’ and mine takes shape. This becomes the one in control of life and in charge of fulfilling the needs of both mind and body. In a sense, the mind-made 'me’ now owns the body and mind, and yet it’s concept of the mind it now owns is severely limited, for this mind only has access to a tethered consciousness, a consciousness where the human body alone defines its nature and becomes its focal point. Therefore, the consciousness ‘I’ has access to, believing itself to be an object that was born and will die, is solely concerned with its own survival, and therefore severely limited in its scope and nature while operating as such. This phenomenal knot is what creates and sustains the experience of 'self,’ the ‘I’ and ‘me’ of living. (Part 2 will be on 3/15/08.)