Tuesday, 3 January 2012

The Hungry Ghost

We are born as pure consciousness, in time an ego is formed that comes to inhabit this pure consciousness. The ego is the sum total of all the knowledge absorbed from birth onwards. The sum total of this knowledge is made manifest by consciousness. This knowledge that the ego is composed of can also be seen as a hugely complex system of beliefs. It could be said that knowledge is just data or information but that belief is something more. Belief can be likened to desire made manifest. I believe in God can then be translated as 'I want to believe in God because there is something to be gained by doing so’. Even the most insane of our beliefs can be translated in this way. There is always a hidden agenda behind our beliefs in which something is expected to be gained. It is not necessary that what is gained makes any sense. It is only necessary that something is desired with the expectation of gaining something. This is the hungry ghost referred to in Buddhism. The hungry ghost does not wish to be free it wishes to continue eating or desiring. Usually when it expresses the wish to be free it is in the hope that somehow it could be free while continuing to desire. Desire is really the illusory belief that what is desired will fill me or complete me. The fact that even when our desire is satisfied it is satisfied for only a moment seems to go unnoticed. We are born as pure consciousness and this never changes we are always that pure consciousness. Consciousness is complete, nothing can change it. This is the great mystery, if consciousness is already complete what is it we are looking for to complete ourselves. The ego is the sum total of all absorbed knowledge and belief and is made manifest by consciousness. Because consciousness itself has no agenda or hidden beliefs it seems to have no substance. On the other hand the absorbed knowledge and beliefs of the ego appear to have substance and so this illusory entity is able to ‘squat’ in an apparently empty house. The house is not empty it is filled with consciousness and even the ego itself could not exist without this consciousness. Consciousness is not interested in the delusions of the ego because consciousness itself is always complete.

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