Let us imagine that lions could think like humans do. Then, lions will have problems when living in society of thousands of lions, due to their violent ways. They need to become soft, gentle, mild. What a ferocious, aggressive lion could DO to become nicer citizens?
Let us push our imagination: Let us say that lions have religious inclinations for they realize that they need some “self-help” guidance and want to be “good.” Wouldn’t a lion as it is now, be considered a “sinner”? Living in society with other lions must be hard for them as they want their own territory and want lionesses ( at least a couple of them) there, only for them. Lions will fight and kill any trespassers and are constantly looking out to expand their territory. Let the female do the hunting and take care of the cubs, while a male lion rests and procreates…
What is the “solution” given by society in such dilemma?
Lions need to be more like rabbits. Seriously: Rabbits do not kill each other. Rabbits do not even eat meat! Rabbits are gregarious and helpful to each other. They are “good” citizens! Therefore: Follow the rabbits! DO as they DO. That became the moral law in that society, the striving ideal to pursue!
Similarly, that is the extent of our education and religious/ moral teachings. We need icons, figures and examples to follow. We are taught to copy them. Effort is in copying. Therefore, to “be good” in our society is synonym with copying a behavior.
When we want to become “better persons,” we copy. We DO as some icon DOES, but a lion cannot BE a rabbit! They can only fake to be one.
As humans we are not taught to OBSERVE our nature.
How can we pretend to self-transform without even looking at our own nature?
When looking, hopefully we are not following what society has to say about our nature. We shouldn’t be interested in labels such as “sinner,” “saint” or “impure.” There cannot be OBSERVATION of what IS, if we bring labels we wish to avoid or comply to.
We wish that a “system” could change the nature of a human. We even fight to demonstrate that a particular system (religious, political) is better than others. We don’t OBSERVE, we are not aware that any system depends on how human beings interpret and executes that based on what he IS. What a human IS drives any system to become “good” or “bad.”
But, many who have never “tried” OBSERVATION could wonder how just observing can make any change?
If a lion accepted its nature, it would be interested in preserving its life. It would experience that colliding with another lion would be detrimental for both parties. If the lion was aware of the experience, there would be automatic change without having the need to copy the iconic rabbit. But, if the lion didn’t have conscious awareness while going through the experience of fighting, the outcome would be a fearful lion or a cocky one. In that lack of awareness, to preserve ego is first. Life in community is secondary. That is how many are into the “economy” (obtaining wealth endlessly) rather than preserving Life.
Many go through life lacking conscious awareness while unconsciously manifesting their savage way, even though knowing, that this is counter productive. At the end, life is a fight for them. It is not something to relax and enjoy, but to fight for, to display the power of their egotistic minds.
Acceptance of our own nature is first.
Lions are needed in Nature just like rabbits, however; transformation of nature is “good” when it is natural. Otherwise, it is forced, it is fake, it is hurtful. Thus, Observation, awareness of who we ARE brings that change for it is natural. It is a personal journey.
Nevertheless; in a world where everyone is at a different stage on their own personal development, many are not ready yet for awareness; for they require the hand holding of religious and political systems, until they grow up and realize themselves, how artificial those are. We could observe then, the need for those systems and accept their role in society as sources of external reformation. The “revolution” is not in revolting or opposing, but in allowing all players to play their own roles.
That integration with all that exists, could be a glimpse of a growing awareness.
To be alert, conscious of our own reactions and our environment as Life unfolds, at every moment, is the essence of being awake.
Otherwise, the mind has a continuous voice which we call “I.” That voice labels, judges, compares using the benchmark of its own conditioning. That voice clouds the perception of objectivity. Under that spell, the “same old thing” is the rule. That is safe, it is comfortable but at the same time unbearable, as Life loses its taste. We are eating the same thing over and over again.
When that voice is gone, we are free without “thinking” about it. We are free without running after the ideal. We experience a different reality.
How to “get rid” of that voice? By being aware of it.
Awareness is not some “action” that we do once in a while when we remember to do it; a “practice,” No!
Awareness grows naturally as our consciousness expands, that is when our pettiness shrinks.
Pettiness? Can you elaborate on that?
Our concern for salvation. Our desire for heaven. Our merchant mentality looking for personal profit in everything we do, whether worldly or spiritual, etc.
Our fear to face the unexpected is pettiness. Our hidden desire to be the “center of the universe” is utmost pettiness.
Many have their own life stories full of beliefs, interpretations about how life is “treating them.” Their sentimentality brings the “victim” syndrome which eventually, shows up as violence.
Everyone has their share of ups and downs in Life. We cannot compare which one is “greater,” for our capacity to adapt, enjoy and cope are different. Nevertheless, Life has lessons which are tailor made for every single one of us. Nothing is left to chance.
A lesson learned means the opportunity to increase our awareness.
How? Lessons in Life are meant to bring every resource we have gathered through experience. We just need the “right combination,” to use “the right set of tools.” That is known as maturity, which dilutes our pettiness.
There are many grown ups without maturity, for this doesn’t come with age necessarily but rather through assimilation of experiences.
We could experience many things in Life but unless there is assimilation of those experiences through impartial observation of them, those experiences become trauma, pettiness; which will not allow us to expand our consciousness.
It is particularly at this time, when we may need to become aware of our violent nature which may not be expressed physically against another, but nonetheless could be expressed through our own opinions, beliefs and idiosyncrasies.
Being aware of our violence is the practical way to allow love to flourish. Otherwise, love is relegated to be another pretty word used to sell more widgets, and to hide our fear to face our inner reality.
Theism, monotheism, deism, pantheism and all subsequent “isms” are on the same boat as the denial of those – namely atheists.
It is another duality where opposites, complement as they are part of the same continuity.
At the mental level, we only want the “right” answer. God or gods either exist or he/she/it/ they don’t.
The mental conditioning comes up with reasons “pro” and “against” just like what we have been taught to do and believe to be “right.” We could back up our views with “proof” the ones given by “experts,” scientists, religious leaders, gurus, political figures, actors, etc. That is the same spaghetti sauce we have been eating for centuries.
When we OBSERVE the significance of EXPERIENCES in Life, we could realize that in the world of duality opposites are not “right or wrong.” That is only human conditioned morality, which nonetheless has value in our society but which is away from Life itself. That understanding requires certain openness and “mileage” in Life. Thus, in Life our mental/ intellectual understanding is of little value, when to go through the full experience is what is really required to KNOW.
If the above seems obscure, that is because it is hard to explain. Let me simplify that with something known by most of us.
When I was a child, a believed in Santa Claus. When I became a teenager, I knew the “truth” that he did not exist. When I became an adult however, I became Santa Claus and gave gifts.
That is the full experience in Life. What is the important aspect of Santa Claus? The gift.
Have you seen a child looking forward to open the gift from Santa? Have you seen a child assessing his behavior during the past year, to conclude that he deserves a gift?
Isn’t that child the same person as the teenager and the same as the adult?
Yes, the same but different consciousness. The child accepts the gift. He has experienced the gift. There is no further questioning needed. The teen, rejects the gift, for he wants an answer, “truth;” but unless that person becomes Santa himself, dressing like one and being the one offering gifts to other children; the experience will not be complete and there will not be “true” understanding. At that point for him, whether someone believes in Santa or not, it will not make a difference. There will be complete understanding. Knowledge.
Consciousness is the most important aspect of living Life.
The child and the teenager still lack the complete experience of an adult.
In Life, many will remain with the consciousness of children whereas others will remain as teens. Few become adults in one lifetime with the experiential understanding that an “answer,” the “truth” has no value in the development of human consciousness. Again, no value at all. Experience of the “yes” and “no” does. Most humans are only concerned with “answers.” Life is concerened with consciousness.
The discovery of this life experience, means the world. That happens when we are OBSERVANT, AWARE.
The gift is all that matters: Receive it or reject it. That is the duality. To go beyond that, is to BE the one offering it.
As long as there are beliefs, our consciousness will be located and influenced by the mind. The mind is a repository of experiences which have been recognized, labeled and used to make sense of “life”. Nevertheless, that “life” is only the reflection of traditions, teachings and traumas of the collective consciousness which will have lasting influence on the individual.
Basically, there cannot be newness while trapped in the mind. There is repetition, there is a false sense of security of “knowing”, which will not allow us to look further into what IS.
The atheist who converts into Christianity after having an “after death” experience, will have a change in his Life. That is the bottom line. It will be the complete opposite of what he previously rejected. That is the mind in action. Moreover, the tradition of what is known as “God” may be affected by a well known religion (Christianity) which he was familiar with. A Life experience is only meant for the one experiencing it. End of report. However, most take this opportunity to enhance their ego and make out of this an opportunity to show how extraordinary they are. A “chosen” one.
“God gave me this experience so I can be a testimony and lead people into his way.” That is “pure” ego in action.
The mind has a belief. The mind has interpreted an experience. The mind has labeled that experience and made it something extraordinary, especial. Then, the field of beliefs is open: God is this or that. He has chosen this one or that one. He will come back to make sure his kingdom is alright, etc. It is extraordinary to observe how from an individual experience, we could make a religion.
The atheist and the believer are at the same level. Their minds took them there. There is full reliance on that conditioned mind, that is what we may need to realize.
Life has many ways to change the perspective of people. For the ones anchored in the mind, rationality and logic; an out of this “world” experience will be necessary to change them. For those way “out there”, something worldly will be needed to balance them. A seeker will need to go through the full range of the experience, the “yes” and the “no”; to “know”. That teaching is experiential, that is why it cannot be told to another so they also “know.”
Beliefs are not bad. Those are tools to gain further consciousness. The tool is not the “thing” to obtain; but while in the mind; we could debate, fight as to which tool is the “true” one. Then, we want to use “science” to prove if the tool is “true.” We are missing the point.
There are many types of consciousness, but the collective consciousness, the one with the “buying power” is an infantile one, and so the journey is just beginning for them.
As we mature, we will observe that spirituality is based on our own self understanding, our own self observation, our own self acceptance; for there is an opening in that which liberates the person from the conditioned mind. We can make that clear distinction. It is the experience of that freedom, what we may long for.
In that realm, beliefs are not necessary. Free from beliefs, we ARE.
A perspective in Life is only a basic view. Perspectives are typically upgraded with labels such as: Law, truth, reality, etc.
Those absolute labels are meant to enhance a perception. The observation of this, is crucial to at least understand with some depth what Life offers and what is tainted through our “knowledge.”
There is a painting in my living room. My location is at one side of it, very close. Am I at the left side or the right side of the painting? That is yet another point of view. Once we select a point of reference such as “me,” I could say that it is on my left side. That is not “reality,” but a perspective.
I could argue that because I am very close to the painting I could see the “reality” of it. That is yet another point of view.
Life is exactly like that painting. We give the meaning based solely in our perspectives, which in turn depend on our conditioning, that is; we are taught to see things in a particular way.
The above is very deep. De-conditioning is around the corner.
Most religions and philosophies thrive in duality, which is a perspective. “That painting is too bright.” That qualification is based on the experience of something dark. The painting just IS. We try to explain it, conceptualize it, add reasons so it makes sense to our conditioned way to see Life; through the veil of “reasoning.”
Who created the painting? That question only shows our conditioning to look for responsible ones, the origin; not realizing that our “reasoning” is taking us to a wild chase of shadows.
Yes, in our “reality” a painting needs to have a painter as the origin, but who created the painter? How far back could we go before we throw an unreasonable “reason”? Just enjoy the picture.
Life is not a painting. Although our perspectives will make it exactly like a painting. Just enjoy the picture.
Paradoxical? Yes and No. Intellectually, yes. In “reality,” No. Just enjoy the picture.
LIFE IS. BEING is its meaning, its “purpose.” We add “good” and “bad.” We create religions and societies based on some artificial distinction, which later will be labeled as “moral,” “godly path,” etc. and its counterpart will be the immoral, the path of the sinner… Self-righteousness is “created” and with that, guilt. Those “creations” have utility in our society, but very artificial.
To live in our society with the “concept” of non-duality is not only impossible. It is silly. Those living in the mind, those who are looking for logical “reasons,” will not be able to “practice it.”
Create a “good” ideology. It sounds good. For instance, let me label it “democracy.” Sell the label to the masses. Have you tried to “practice” democracy? See how our society is failing to “practice” it. Want to create socialism? Practice will destroy it. It will corrupt it. However, in the world of “theories” it sounds pretty good. It is just a matter to “enforce” things… Violence.
Why is that? Why is it, that we cannot put in practice what we preach?
Simple. We ARE NOT what we preach. A cat cannot be a dog, even if the cat “practices” to wag its tail and takes barking lessons… But the “effort” of the cat to become a dog, is the source of many lucrative ventures. Good for the economy! Bottom line in our “reality.”
Theory has always been more desirable than practice, in “reality.”
Wisdom is not attained. There is no achievement there.
Insight is not given in a “spiritual class.”
There is no religion or philosophical system that could offer wisdom, but conditioning through information.
There is no course or “certification,” that could prepare anyone to be a “spiritual guide.”
Living Life will unleash wisdom… little by little.
Living Life in awareness, will speed things up.
Therefore; in Life, we could go slow or we could go fast.
Either way we will get there.
Nowhere. A rat in a maze will run everywhere, “searching” for something. Awareness, will allow us to know that we are in a maze. What is there to search? The “exit”? Everyone will get there without “effort.” Thus, Enjoy the maze!
The “spiritual class,” the religion, the philosophical system, the spiritual certification, the course with the guru, will give you a destination, a “where to go,” Something to achieve!
The majority of “spiritual” people need that. Achieve by paying a fee.
Go through a door, here comes another. There are so many doors! Which one is the “top door” to achieve? What is the shortcut, the “right” method? Label every door: Level 1, level 2, level 3… just like a Nintendo game. Now we are going someplace! Although, nowhere.
The bottom line of any type of worthwhile “spirituality” is to connect us back with ourselves.
Life happens and many times is not according to our “plans.” That creates a trauma which will need to be undone later on. That is a journey in itself.
Rather than move on and “live and learn,” we want an explanation. We want to intellectually know “why this happened to ME.”
That is the beginning of all religious tales about salvation, redemption, heaven and the chosen ones… but at the same time, that is how we may start feeling that we are not the center of the Universe and that Life is fragile… on the surface.
The above is not just an intellectual idea. It has been my experience. I have gone through the steps. I know.
If you haven’t gone through that avenue of Life, you will certainly be naive in just believing what I have said. In Life, you must find out by yourself. That is the price of knowing.
This knowing is not about reading Wikipedia, books and second-hand, “office world” learning. This type of knowing will give birth to a new consciousness.
Consciousness changes through Life experiences.
What is this consciousness?
First and foremost, it is to BE sentient and our extent of identity with Life itself. All beings are conscious. That is what we have in common. That consciousness becomes individual through our physical/subtle form and then it will be shaped and conditioned individually through Life experiences.
Greater consciousness means to be AWARE of the different levels of experiences. Most are bound by their own physicality. That is their consciousness. Nothing wrong with that.
By hearing this, most may want to improve, most want to change to “become better.” What a great ego trip that is! Rather than acknowledging who we ARE and learn from that acceptance, we like to deny it to live according to an ideal.
Life does not work like that. In Life, it is all about experiences. We think some are better and others worse. We like to dwell into that mental duality all the time. Consciousness changes through Life experiences. The range of experiences is enormous, greater than our little definitions of “good and bad.”
Elementary religious systems and moral standards are in that “black or white” consciousness. That is the collective consciousness. It does not mean that their consciousness is the “truth.” It only means that it is a particular range of experience.
Life is like a movie. Consciousness like the audience of the movie. Some will like something in particular about the movie. Others will not. Observe that your liking or disliking binds you to a particular experience. That liking or disking defines you, it will give life to that “I,” that ego…. “I like this.” I want for Life to follow my likings.
Nothing wrong with liking something, but be aware that because of that, something which is not of your liking will appear, for Life is greater than a definition of likings of the “I.” Life is a TOTALITY.
A religion may preach to treat every event in Life equally without likes or dislikes. Followers will DO that, fake it… Their consciousness is not there to support those words.
Then “practice” is preached but “practice” does not change consciousness, it only creates a behavioral habit. It is a mental fake.
Open up! open your self-definition until there is no label that could define “you.”
There is no movie without an audience. “We” are both. The sensible thing is to ENJOY the TOTALITY of the show and not to get caught up in a part.