February 26

Beyond Limited Existence

Let’s begin by understanding the problem; let’s not first concern ourselves with action, with what to do.
What part of you can claim to be unchangeable, independent, and autonomous? You are constantly changing, ever-moving. Literally and figuratively, you are a movie.
Were you born? Birth can’t be remembered. Is there any difference between I don’t remember and I don’t know?
Too, although dying can be known, death cannot be known. So we define our existence between these two unknown points.
We can say that you were born with the Universe and when you end, it likewise ends, your having no evidence to the contrary. But this is limited existence, defined by those two points. Can there be an unlimited existence, without beginning, without end. Yes there can be.
How then to move beyond the limited existence. Can the self free itself from itself?
This is the problem we are faced with.
All spiritual aspiration must involve cutting through confusion and, in so doing, unveils the awakened, natural or essential state. However, were recognition to be the product of some practice, then it contains an inherent dependency, being a result of cause and effect. If it is caused, it may become uncaused.
However, true recognition is permanent because we have not produced it; we have merely re-discovered it.
The observation “There is pain” is prior to the expression “I am in pain”. Somewhere in between the observation and the expression, “I” is introduced. Who is it, or what is it, that introduces this “I”?
Since what is witnessed must pass through the language centers of the brain in order for it to be expressed, it is the brain that introduces “I”. What the brain has done is to objectify the pure subjectivity, the perceiving, into a ‘me’ perceiver.
Can one draw any distinction between the brain in the body in the world and the conceptual “me”?
Can one kindle an awakening to the everpresent, unchanging Conscious Life Energy? I suggest it is indeed possible via an inquiry into the nature of a consciousness that is present even when one is unconscious.

February 25

Journal: July 5, 1997

Waking and dream comprise a single experiental state. Each are real in their time and each negates the reality of the other.
The experiencer and the experienced are the two polaric aspects of Experiencing. This state is the activity of the Conscious Life Energy, whereas contentless sleep is its default.
One must discern that all there is is the Conscious Life Energy experiencing itself via a tool it uses, you. You is merely a viewpoint, a window through which Consciousness, as world, is experienced.
Individual appearances occur at such a high speed that the illusion of continuity is created in the same way that a movie is created from a series of individual frames. As such, all change is sequential, and there is no continuous entity that can be thought to be constant through the cycle. This now, moments without duration, is singular; the apparent succession constituting time is mere convention.

February 23

Enlightenment and the Brain

The topics of enlightenment and neuroscience cannot be help at arms’ length from one another. Both are intricately tied to brain function. To that end, here a few additional points I’d like to make:

1. The reflection and the surface on which it takes place are not distinct but are one, divided only by the mind. The Original state, the state that existed prior to the divisions of mind, was without “other”. “Other” is only a mental construction.
The brain does not work well when dealing with background. That is why if I hand you a drawing of a black box on a white surface and ask you what you see, you will most likely reply “A black box”. The background, the white surface, has been ignored. In this fashion, the brain truncates This-Here-Now and the unity of the gestalt is lost.

2. Neuroscience has now decisively shown that the brain edits memories relentlessly, updating the past with new information. The result is perpetually appended memory, sort of File/Save/Overwrite?/Yes.
However, the entire notion of updating the past with new information invalidates what we refer to as the past. In much the same way, “the person”, those thoughts and actions tied to a body, is always being updated.

3. It is impossible for the brain to exclude itself from its representation of reality. The brain therefore establishes a relationship between the objects and itself via the processes of self consciousness, thereby creating a “oneself”. However, this structure somehow gets perverted, resulting in a self-supposed I-doll of worship and devotion, craving constant attention and affirmation.
This is the delusion that must be shattered.
Instead of seeing an individual, the attitude must be “This is the Conscious Life Energy animating a body,” which body answers to Its directions, as a ship answers to the movements at the helm.