Thursday, 4 February 2016

If the past is memory what then is the present?

Repeating Om is probably useful in the same way all meditative methods can be useful. It is important that any meditative method not be practiced mechanically. What I consider more important is the understanding of what meditation is and what Om represents. The closer we get to the correct understanding the more effective these things become. In the end it is the understanding that is more important than the practice. With enough understanding there is no need to do anything. Memory is a recording of the past that is given importance because it is easy once a memory is created all we have to do is refer to it in any situation occurring in the present. We have become addicted to this way of living that does not require effort or attention this is why meditation is difficult. In meditation we can no longer rely on memory although we tend to continue to do so. Meditation and ultimately understanding require that we learn again how to live in the moment with full attention. This requires an understanding of the right effort needed to achieve this natural level of attention. If the past is memory what then is the present? Clearly the present is the place where a choice may be made as to how the potential inherent in the present may be used or created. In the moment we can either choose the past in the form of converting the present into the past with memory or not. This 'not' is important as by not converting the present into the past we remain in the present and in the present we have access to creation. All meditation should lead to the understanding of this potential of the present which is where the universe is created. We are interfaced with creation itself but somehow have become lost in a world created with memory that can never be as fresh and creative as the present. With memory we create a world for ourselves that is distorted, corrupted, and untrue and then wonder why we suffer. Suffering itself is a memory that we choose over the present just because it is easier to do this than to do the work that is initially required to find our way back to the present. It is not just specific memories that are the problem it is the fact that we impose our memories over everything to the extent that all that we see, feel, or understand about ourselves and the world is a bad recording of the past.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Sleight of Hand

Knowing and memory are the same. Whatever is known can only be known through referencing something that was previously ‘known’. American indians who had not previously seen a train referred to a train as an iron horse. God is a word denoting something that cannot be known unless somewhere deep inside  is the memory of God. In Kashmir Shaivism it is assumed that man being born is subject to this amnesia, forgetting that we are God. All of life is considered to involve the remembering of who we really are usually through the means of remembering or realising who we are not. It is inevitable that because of this condition that knowing can only occur through memory of something already known that we will get lost or sink into a world of illusion where all that is known or can ever be known is based solely on what we are able to remember or whatever happens to be in our memory bank. All things are inherently unknowable.and this fact needs to be denied at all cost. Safety and security could not exist without this denial. While it is necessary to deny that all things are inherently unknowable we are still faced with the problem that even if we deny the unknowable it does not mean and cannot mean our denial is true. Whatever is known or can be known is processed by the sleight of hand of replacing all experience into what has already been experienced. We are compelled to live our lives seeking only what is already known regardless of whether or not what is already known works. It seems it is preferable to know something that is already known than to know something that works or is true. When we meet someone for the first time we will replace what we see with what we already know we will add to what we see memories of experiences with others we have previously known. We will use any information in terms of looks or mannerisms as necessary to turn what we see into someone we already know. Again the principle of what is already known is preferable to what works or is true usually means that when we turn people into who we already know we will find out eventually that we have created mistaken assumptions. Finding this out we can either reevaluate our assumptions or go through the whole process again with someone else. In Sanskrit the word Om refers to that which is unknowable something without boundaries of any kind, timeless and infinite in nature. The repetition of this word is designed to inject into our minds an antidote to the replacing of what we see with what we already know. Beliefs are always related to what is already known and what is preferable to be known. The realisation of this is also an antidote to our tendency to see the world only in terms of what is already known. The ego is the part of us that in order to feel safe replaces what is actually there with what is preferable and known. In many ways this is useful, with food for instance where over long periods of time we learn which foods are safe and which are not and this is rarely questioned. In other areas this tendency may be our undoing. Replacing anything that does not suit us into something that does can have disastrous results and turn out to be very unsafe. Consciousness is similar to the idea of Om something without boundaries and infinite in terms of potential and intelligence. So long as we are addicted to replacing what is with what is already known we can never realise what we already have; the pure infinite potential and intelligence of consciousness.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

The Greatest Paradox

More on love.

I have been thinking a lot about Love since your blog..I even got asked to do a talk about it...I know you always say that what people come to describe as love cant really be love..because it results in suffering. And that the only true meaning of love must be synonymous with consciousness or Adhikaranam. So I have three questions...

 Looking forward to your truth as always.

A)how can someone challenge or deconstruct their false beliefs about love?

Hi Louis,  A)  The two best possibilities I can see are to learn to understand completely what this word ‘belief’ actually means. It seems that this should not be too difficult yet it turns out to be extremely difficult. The reason for this is that this question about the meaning of belief involves the meaning of all beliefs. So many of our beliefs are so deeply embedded and ‘believed’ that questioning the word belief requires a lot of preparation or work that involves questioning all beliefs. There are some beliefs that most people will never question because to question them would mean questioning our sanity. The other possibility is with love itself and involves a sort of paradoxical intention by starting with the premise that we or the ego is not able to love. If we can accept this then the possibility of finding what love actually is is greatly increased.  As with the first possibility this is a belief that most will find deeply unpalatable or repellent. The ego is completely unable to love and so if we believe we can love and this is not true it becomes impossible to correct. We are not the ego and so in order to find what love is we must first find what we really  are. Sorry no easy answers to this question.

b) what connection do you think there might be to the feeling of love and consciousness?

B) Feeling or physical sensation is very close to consciousness and therefore love but again the problem is that thinking and believing anything automatically diminishes our ability to feel or know our own physical sensation experience of reality.

C) I have read that Oxytocin is the love hormone. It increases trust and bonding behaviours both between individuals and within groups. This seems to have resulted from evolution, to improve survival. But as we become more conscious of our survival mechanisms, as we challenge our faulty belief systems based on survival, do you think we can move beyond survivalist strategies and survivalist biochemistry? 

C) Yes, the words want, expect and create are deeply connected if we could synthesise these three meanings into one we would begin to understand that what we want is actually what we expect and what we expect is what we came to expect based on experiences and conclusions formed early in life. Whatever we want or expect is created through the medium of consciousness, seen from this perspective our lives are a self created prison where we create every detail of our life experience and then completely forget what we have done. Through meditation or self enquiry we can diminish our self induced amnesia and remember the whole of what we have created and why we created it. Suffering is the key because in suffering we see the greatest paradox, if we can accept that what we have is self created then why would we create suffering? For me there is no doubt whatsoever that we do in fact create our own suffering . Biochemistry is created from what we believe not the other way around.

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Love and Power, a question

Hi Ray,

I wondered if you could help me get my head around something. Is it possible to love power? Or does power not actually exist? Is it just a belief? 

Hi Nick, power was the focus of my attention during the period when I was training for psychotherapy. To understand your question it is necessary to understand the two words you used, love and power. Both these words from the point of view of the ego tend to have no meaning or highly distorted false meanings. The origin of love is consciousness where all that is is composed of the same substance, there is no place or meaning for division. In Sanskrit this is referred to as Adhikaranam; this means substratum which is that which underlies everything. It is the substance of the Absolute , which is pure consciousness. In the world love is loaded with meanings that we find palatable these meanings are very limited and tend to have no lasting meaning which means that these meanings or beliefs do not work they break down when we hit the unpalatable. Power I take to be a potential rather than a belief although it is belief that drives this potential. If the belief applied is untrue or negative in any way then the power that is created is false power and like love does not work or results in suffering. Most examples of power seen in the world are created by beliefs that have an obvious or implied negative contained in them and so again do not work. In terms of potential it is possible to create true power, this could only occur if our conception is free from negatives and is aligned with consciousness. This is usually what I refer to as keeping your word. Keeping your word implies the above conditions of being free from all negatives and aligned with consciousness. In essence this would be truth. In this sense power is truth and it is certainly possible to love that.

Friday, 28 August 2015

Questions and answers from the last post

Could you please interpret what you have written in the blog as to how it relates with the ego. How does the false sense of self come about when making these false assumptions using knowledge.

The false sense of self (the ego) is created by the simple act of believing whatever false assumptions we may hold. This is very subtle yet very powerful, the best analogy I can think of is when the gears of a car are in neutral nothing happens (consciousness) when the gears are engaged there is movement. You could say that the intention to move is created by the disturbance we feel when we are still. We do not engage the gears because there is somewhere to go but because we (the ego) cannot tolerate stillness (consciousness).

Perfect! that metaphor makes a lot of sense. Of course pure stillness is consciousness. Although the word stillness has been used so often in religious and spiritual circles, the essence still remains. Consciousness is perfect stillness and all movement is temporary and abstract and therefore synonymous with belief and therefore illusory. Is that true? And if so the next obvious question is the whole point of this search: How do we remain still?

There is a zen parable in which the question is raised by two monks 'is it the wind that moves the flag' a third monk says no it is mind moving. It could be said that nothing moves except the mind. The only way movement can be seen and verified is with the mind. How do we remain still? thats easy just put the gear in neutral - if only it were that easy. Do you remember me telling you the sequence of events after the collapse of beliefs. Without beliefs I became aware of an intense fear, all my internal sign posts were gone. All the internal stories I had used to give meaning to my life were gone. Suddenly I realised that if there was fear there there was still belief and understanding that belief is never true I finally understood that fear is a belief based on something that is not true, suddenly the fear was gone and has never returned. When I look back over my life I see that the biggest shifts came when my fears were revealed and understood. All movement (stories) revolve around fear. From almost drowning to the collapse of beliefs fear was the critical element that needed to be understood, there were many other instances in my life where fear was instrumental in my understanding going deeper. For many fear is something to move away from but for whatever reasons it seems I was not allowed to move away from it but instead was forced to go into it. Your question had the effect of dominoes falling in my mind each one connected to fear. This is why it is so difficult to be still, how can we be still when we have so many fears? Remember fear is not something real it is ultimately a belief that is not true. Become aware of all the fears you hold and then consider the source of all fear - if there is fear there must be a source.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Truth and Understanding part 2

Once it is seen that no symbol or language can be used to express truth we are free to examine with a truly open mind whether or not an idea or belief is useful or not. Knowledge is based on assumptions that something is true or it is false. Either of these conclusions would be wrong. True or false cannot be proven as the language these words are composed of can only ever have the meaning we choose to give them. Meaning will always be decided by individual preference. Any preference must be conditional, that is it must be based on whatever knowledge we have accumulated through our individual life experience, which by its nature will always be different from another's experience. Who is to decide which of all possible life experiences will lead us to the correct conclusion. Knowledge based on assumptions can only lead us around in circles forever replacing one belief with another, non of which can ever be true. All of history is composed of this process.

True understanding is equivalent to consciousness.

False understanding creates an illusion whereby consciousness is hidden.

True understanding occurs when beliefs are seen to be illusions that may be useful or not.

When this is seen/understood the illusion dissolves to reveal the truth.

The truth is that which remains when the illusion dissolves.

This is consciousness.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Truth and Understanding

Understanding comes in many forms or levels. There is the mental or thinking level with its associated mental form of beliefs. It is very important to understand this level fully. If not it is difficult if not impossible to get to the other levels of understanding. The mental level is an abstract level where ideas and meaning are used and created. Abstract means not actual; something that does not exist in reality, it is usually related to something that does or may exist but still cannot be said to exist in reality. The meaning of the word ‘truth’ in sanskrit gives some idea of what I am saying about the mental level of understanding. Satyam is the word for truth in sanskrit and is composed of two roots words or syllables sat and yam. Sat means being or that which is or that which exists. Yam can mean ‘excellence of’ or my preference which is ‘perfect’. So truth is being or that which is perfect. Perfect means complete nothing can be added or taken away from it. Adding or taking away is what the mental level tends to get involved in.  Everything that is not a belief is true is another way of saying everything that is a belief is untrue and does not exist. The next level of understanding is the body and its physical sensations this level came before the mental level and its development took many millions of years longer. All the sensations of the body together are concerned with being in the world. Our senses give us physical contact with the world, not only is it older than the mental level it is much more truthful. When we touch something very hot the understanding is immediate, it cannot be said to be complete but compared to the mental level is vastly superior. I say it is not complete because although we understand immediately that something is hot we still may not understand the truth or all that needs to be understood. I am referring to a much deeper level of understanding that is not just concerned with whether something is hot or not but is concerned with reality itself. The idea of hot (mental) is very different from the reality of hot (physical). Pain is a product of physical sensation (hot) and mental understanding in the form of beliefs such as ‘I don't like it’ or it shouldn't be like this. These beliefs relate to many other beliefs such as who or what is this ‘I’. Suffering or pain is usually the result of mixing and misunderstanding the mental and physical levels of understanding without access to the understanding that goes with consciousness. This access is denied only because we are so fixated on the mental and physical levels of understanding. We are fixated/frustrated because these are the only levels of understanding available to us without consciousness and the understanding that goes with it, we neurotically bounce from the mental to the physical and vice versa getting more and more caught in the web or our own imaginings.
The last level of understanding before the level where understanding is no longer necessary is where consciousness is seen to be the source of all understanding as well as the part where understanding is no longer necessary. To understand the last level of consciousness we need to deeply understand the first two levels of the mental and physical. Truly understanding that belief is abstract and unreal or does not exist is essential. Once this is understood we naturally find ourselves in the physical level, and without beliefs to confuse this level we naturally move to the last level of consciousness.