The Ocean of Consciousness

January 21, 2017 § 5 Comments

heron-by-the-sea

Meditation is the continuous waking to the present moment from distracting thoughts. This description implies a need to learn the difference between thinking and non-thinking. In practice this means we must be as the heron that has one eye out for food, while the other looks steadfastly to the sky.

It is a sad fact that the vast majority of humanity is so caught up in distraction that life seems barren without it. There is little of the light of the higher life in these masses who disdain the silence of meditation in a fruitless quest to satisfy their cravings.

Above the majority are those whose circumstance and desire has enabled this light to burn a little brighter. These are the quasi-intellectual, semi-cultured ones who often gravitate towards ideology and dogmatism. In these the conceit of ego often erupts in senseless disputes that may at times lead to political chaos and even war.

There are fewer still above these two lower levels who, though still possessing of ego, have learned to put it aside in favor of humanity. We may say of them that their stream of thought is actively dedicated to helping others.

For the most part, thinking dominates the minds of all who are led by ego and desire. In the actual day-to-day experience it plays out as an on-going dialogue and stream of emotion that is often described as a movie projected onto an inner, mental screen. To the greater mass of humanity this movie is fragmented and chaotic. The quasi-intellectual may have more of a story line but it is the rare few above them whose movies may be of ‘epic’ proportions.

For those who meditate and practice mindfulness it may take a long time before they can just observe their movies without being caught up in them. The individual suffering Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder provides an extreme example of this.

For most of us, even when focused upon a simple task the mind plays a story that we soon find ourselves following. When we become aware of this we can usually drop it and return to the task. For the individual suffering PTSD, however, there is no end to the movie. Worst still, the  movie doesn’t just involve the mind but has the entire body reacting to the horrific images being screened. And at the height of anxiety the movie may even jump off the screen into the outside world, leaving the individual feeling as if he or she were trapped in a theatre with no exit.

Whereas PTSD is produced by trauma, our movie producers are our culture, family, personal talents and other attributes that go into making us who we are. It is because our movies are so intricately involved with our identity that they are difficult to drop. And why when we persist on the path that a point comes when anxiety sets in. This anxiety is a signal that we are loosening the very attachments that make us feel safe and secure. Having pruned the tree of distraction, we begin to realize that we must leave its cool shade if we are to fully enter the light.

This is where many fail to progress to the next level that we may call Cosmic or Transcendent Consciousness. The ego, in sensing a Voice that says “I am I yet also Others,” fears the loss of its personal identity. So it hesitates. But if we continue to set one eye on the sky and the other on what lies below the surface, we will eventually see that we’ve been standing in an Ocean of Consciousness, all along.

Advertisements

Tagged: , , , , , ,

§ 5 Responses to The Ocean of Consciousness

  • oiseauxwords says:

    the parallel between ptsd and a movie is particularly interesting to me. especially going into the defense mechanisms the mind painstakingly goes to in pre-processing stages to protect the sanity of said movie-goer, like a censoring committee of sorts.

    “this movie is rated MA for mature and needed to be suppressed until further notice.”

    Like

    • The human mind does try to protect itself, which is another reason why the ‘slow’ Path is better for many. If one tries to force matters, what’s suppressed and denied may burst forth. With PTSD, for example, the mind might suddenly ‘open up’, leaving one feeling exposed and afraid. This ‘opening’ is not just metaphorical but a very real experience that has its parallel to expanded states of consciousness sometimes experienced in meditation. Except that instead of feeling free, the experience is that of complete vulnerability which may persist for months. (PS pardon delayed response as I only saw your comment today.)

      Liked by 1 person

      • oiseauxwords says:

        That actually just happened to me today because of revisiting something that happened to me in my other blog that I had been suppressed for a good five years.

        Like

      • Those suffering some type of psychological ‘dis-ease’ who take up meditation need first to acquire calmness before they delve into the vulnerable areas of their psyche in search of insight into the condition. Stabilizing the mind by learning to focus on the breath or the moment is what’s required. The thinking mind might offer solutions and “Aha!” moments that lead to the feeling that a solution has been found. But these are like the answers to koans that are repeatedly rejected by the Zen Teacher. In always returning to the moment from thought and feeling, the mind eventually grows calm and focused. With such a mind what cannot be done?

        Liked by 1 person

      • oiseauxwords says:

        That’s very true 🙂

        I’ve gotten out of the habit of meditating as much as I’d like to.

        I can get to that head space easily from practicing years of clearing my mind to maintain sanity and making an overall conscious effort to be more present. I just gotta –do it.

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

What’s this?

You are currently reading The Ocean of Consciousness at August Meditations.

meta

%d bloggers like this: