The world is an illusion. Not a plain boring illusion, it is a mad mad world. A mutually agreed upon insanity. Why do we insist that it is real? If not this which one is the real? Is there any experience which is more sane, more rational, less miserable?
In this part of the series, we read, about the collective illusion of the universal mind, the Ishvara. We learn that some teachings are sugar coated and diluted to suit the level of evolution of a student. The teachings of a creator and a creation are some among many such skillful means to purify a mind and bring it to nondual wisdom. Finally we see that there is only one ignorance of one Self, and liberation of one mind brings an end to all ignorance there is.
In this part of the series, we read about the mechanisms of Maya, the force, latent in the existence itself, which wakes up through minds and project an illusory experience. We also see how an illusion of ego arises, and how can one Self/existence appear as many egos. We explore the beginning and cause of the Maya.
Causality is just an idea, a concept, a creation of the mind. Cause and effect apply in a tiny area of the Ego and are related to survival. Cause and effect do not provide a convincing explanation for the reality or for our own direct experiences. Why does it seem like there are causes for events and there are effects of them? How does the mind create causation? If not in terms of cause and effect, how else can we understand this continuous change we call the experience?
Universal Mind is the manifested existence. Continuing from our previous meetings on the topic, we will take a baby step towards establishing the universal mind, via direct experiences. This will be more of an unlearning experience rather than a learning one. All one needs to do is thoroughly question one's everyday waking experience, and arrive at a place of not knowing. As soon as the dirt of beliefs is cleared, the knowledge then shines by itself.
In the second part on the topic of the universal mind, some ways and methods to explore the universal mind are discussed in brief. There are three broad ways to approach the Universal Mind:
2. Ordinary experiences
3. Extraordinary experiences
3.1 Everyday extraordinary experiences
3.2 Rare extraordinary experiences
3.3 Brute force methods
3.4 Elegant methods
3.5 Permanent experiences
In this meeting the concept of universal mind is presented in brief. Universal mind is all that which can be experienced, all that which is manifested. There are various theories and models of its structure and organization or ontology. Some of them are presented here. This is the part one of two on this topic.
The world is names and forms. This is the famous teaching. Hows that even possible? How to gain a direct experience of it? How to verify it and get solid evidence for it? We will dig into this teaching in this discussion and try to get a direct experience of the essential nature of the world. This is also a demonstration of gaining knowledge via enquiry, as is customary in the path of knowledge.
Law of balance ensures that positivity is balanced by negativity. Whenever there is an excess of one polarity, it reverses and goes to the other extreme. This oscillation continues, till everything is well balanced. Our lives are a series of swings from too positive to too negative. This is because our actions and thoughts are imbalanced. Knowledge of this law helps to bring back the balance and harmony in our daily lives. It becomes smooth and peaceful instead of violent swings of polarities.
Law of attraction, or mental attractors, has a firm grip on the minds, especially human minds. If we are unaware of it, we are bound to remain in a deep pit, of an attractor, which the mind digs for itself. If we know this law well, we can leverage it to come out of any situation, and become anything we please. A mind is fully capable of attracting anything, and as soon as it does so, the reality around it changes itself.
The mind distorts all neutral experiences into either positive or negative. This is the nature of the mind. This is the law of polarities. The reality is seen as either positive or negative because of the conditioning or preferences of the mind. An understanding of this law frees us from it, and one can even leverage it to get what one wants easily.
Our past conditioning determines our actions, and the consequences result in learning. Life is a means to learn our lessons which these actions and consequences produce. Learning helps to evolve, to progress and to become better. Minds are governed by the law of action, and this law completely determines how the minds evolve. Doing an action may not bring about the desirable consequences, but it always brings a lesson. So the right action is that which brings the right lessons that can help us grow and evolve. The more we evolve, more free we become. More freedom brings more happiness and peace. Happiness and freedom are thus, our goals.
Law of action or Karma is perhaps the most important law of the mind. Although it looks plain, simple and obvious, it has roots that go very deep. This law determines how a mind works and how it acts. It is also the backbone of the reality. Study of this law answers many fundamental questions related to human existence, such as - why am I the way I am? What am I doing here in this world, what is the purpose or point of it? Why should I act and how should I act? What are the consequences of my actions and how to act so that I get desired consequences?
Law of impermanence is a direct result of the flowing nature of the reality. Nothing here stays, everything comes and goes. Clinging to all that which is not going to stay is a cause of suffering. Knowing that the life is not about accumulating, getting, bonding or doing, it is only a continuous flow of experiences, frees us from the suffering. Reality is all that can be experienced, and by its very nature, it is momentary, ephemeral and ever changing. In contrast, the Self is changeless, eternal and the only thing that lasts, it is what I am. So detaching with what comes and goes and identifying with what remains is the key that frees us from suffering.
Study of the nature of reality gives us some clues about the ways in which it operates. These regular and consistent ways become the laws of the mind. These laws are unbreakable, eternal and truly universal. Knowledge of these laws can help to bring the mind out of its misery and although the mind cannot escape these laws, they can be leveraged to make one's daily life as a mind and a body, easier and smoother.
Since all experiences are mediated via the mind, which distorts what is into a subjective impression of it, all we can experience is necessarily a distortion. That means, we cannot know what is, we only know that which is not. It also means, all we can have is ignorance, not knowledge. Any knowledge is refined ignorance, nothing more. Reality stands on the foundation of ignorance and is unknowable.
Reality is experience, and there is a conscious background of it - the Self, the experiencer, or the consciousness. There is no separation between the experience and the experiencer. Although, there is an illusion of separation created by the mind, which divides the wholeness of the reality into multiple kinds of experiences. It also creates the division of the experience and the experiencer. When we see through this illusion, we find that the Self, and the reality are one, and identical. This is the greatest realization a human can have.
Reality is infinitely potent. All possibilities exists, and they exists at the same time, timelessly. All that can be imagined and all that cannot be imagined already exists. There is no use of it, there is no purpose or meaning behind it and there is no cause of it. There is immense freedom in knowing this. We are all expressions of infinite potency of reality and our own nature is the same. We prefer infinite freedom, we are evolving towards that goal where there is infinite potency, infinite freedom. We are becoming one with existence.
Reality is impermanence, everything is changing. Astonishing observation is that all of the change is circular. It repeats itself eventually. It means that nothing new will happen, all that is happening has already happened, not once or twice, but almost infinite times. There are cycles of change, and there are cycles within cycle. Everything repeats, everything has happened countless number of times. What are the implications of this?
We continue our discussion on the multidimensionality. The mind is a multidimensional thing, and since it is the creator of reality, the reality also appears in multidimensional ways. In simple words, for every dimension of the mind, there is a corresponding reality, a different world for each of the different states of the mind. These worlds are enchanting and endless. Study of this world and other worlds is an interesting and never-ending adventure.