Towards the infinite...
I find that working with people, most of our problems come from a lack of shared definition. Simply put, the world I see conflicts with the world they / you see. And there appears the 'other'. The other is not me. The other may be odd. The other may be threatening. Threats make me fearful, defensive and I may switch on the survival button, and in that mode of survival, the Lord Farquaad's, from Shrek, quote starts to become desirable: "Some of you may die, but that is a sacrifice I am willing to make".
Secondly, the world repetitively fails to subject itself under my transcendent powers of control. It has the nasty habit to not conform to my plans. It has a will of its own. It is 'other', but on a cosmic scale.
Between people and the world, I'm having a tough time. The simple beauty so desirable is constantly spoilt. The participation invitation bends back to a nightmare.
Years I tried to pray smarter, surround myself with smart guru people, upgrade the soul software, upgrade all ancillary hardware, become more introspective, and try harder and try smarter. All without becoming contemplative. But that magic potion, the winning formula and the right team always just hovers over the immediate horizon.
Finally, I discovered contemplation. Truthfully, it was the last item on my strategic list, but one gets there after enough failure. Slowly it emerges that the problem has always been that of definition, my definition, a faulty worldview. The 'me' is the problem, that me in my head peeping out through the body orifices at the hostile 'other' outside. That complex outside, the sometimes chaotic outside, the teasingly patterned, yet quite random outside.
My western logic mind, trained culturally in reductionism, factually perception categorising, pattern bundling and simplifying frameworkism revealed itself as the problem, It interacts with the world and people out there, reaches out to the incomparable, invisible God out in everywhere land, all in a broken manner. The inner world of imagination constructed from a few facts, absorbed by snatching odd fragments from that rich reality kaleidoscope, probably a exercise of grabbing based on prejudicial inner programming. Validating my already certainties, growing and self affirming all the mind mountains of ego-satisfying self affirmation.
Generally discounting the other, or staring at what does not fit the inner construct, with absolute cataract blindness.
The world is inner-pictured as a massive distortion through that frosted lens. Observations and experiences at best haphazardly and eclectically collected and added to the already crude worldview. Thoughts, theories and will, flow from this dysfunctional mind and tries to impose meaning upon an infinitely richer, subtle reality outside of that narrow inner confinement.
Life live based on a conjugative error in experience and malfunctioning observation. Trying to make sense, while constantly suffering from brain and thought inflammation. Faulty sense, leads the bit and harnessed body all wrong, to make bad decisions, to perpetuate the frustration of missing the point, the go wide of the mark and misfit the real truth. The mind gets out of tune, addicted to the wrong tembre, subjected to resonance distortion.
One realises that the experience of life becomes more and more at odds with the notional concepts of the inner mind. And bit by bit we split. The split unwholes us, we become unwholesome. The self fragments more and more and broken we find ourselves to be.
But, at this point of despair, it came to me to change. The change is to reconceive. To go face-to-face with the 'other'. To extend the perception bandwidth by serious jumps in multiples by increasing the organs of perception to encompass all senses. To rewire perception away from the mind-first, to subordinate the brain, let flow first to the heart, which itself will percolate up in time to the logic mind. All senses, both physical and spiritual, combine to embrace reality through many doors. The door hinges may need some oiling, missing keys need to be found and all that fresh ventilated openings requires some adjustment to after years of stuffy encasement.
Deliberately stilling thoughts to give a first preferred first access to holy imagination, drowning the inner world of mind-recordings, disrupt all that inner furniture and lifelong decorations. Freeing out from the tyranny of habitual contrivance. Exploring fresh reality, mostly unknown, habitually unnoticed, exposing the once dulled conscience to light, light unfamiliar to the current atrophied and stiff alignments. That dull conscience, steeped in objectivism, soaked now in fresh flows.
Learning participation, not thought mastery. Learning the artistic method of perception muscle stretching. Forgetting and unlearning mind reductionism, a fresh engagement with all the multiples of signals and messages life, creation and the divine perpetually and lovingly sends us. Returning to the innocence of conception through multiples of bandwidths of receptors - smell, taste, texture, form, qualitative, beauty, shimmer, shine, vitality, colour, divineness, life, uniqueness, distinctively... Free from the cooking and filtering of the brain. Following the wind of the spirit, not the sepulchre of the mind-flesh.
But, what if senses, atunement, discernment, observing, absorbing, participation, connection, presencing proves a flighty faerie or spright, a poet's dream-world, a hippy unicorn? That fear will surface. But, just reflect on the symbolic limitations of rationalism. Practice subordinating the brain and thought machine to follow behind those same faerie sprights. Participate first in union, before the allowing resolving facts, relating before definition. Restore the virgin of wonder, the childlike unselfconscious engagement. Allowing sensation freed from the tyranny of thought. Let thought be distilled in some secondary wave, bypassing the narrow circle of mere conscious rational thought.
Learning the meditation in mediation of the external revelation before the consciousness of rational thought. Recognition of the quality, value, significance, or magnitude of people and things, awareness or delicate perception, especially of subtle aesthetic qualities or values that rearrange, redecorate the inner narrow circle construct of the mind.
Learning to pour abroad imagination, the 'other' becomes a friend, a teacher, a guide to the unimagined. The untameable, uncontrollable universe becomes a moment, a flow and a resonance. Life loves that, especially the life inside, expanding towards freedom.
Contemplation is not focus, its letting go, letting in, opening doors, loosening up...