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Elizabeth Reninger

Deep Sea Diving

By January 30, 2013

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From sky to sea, and sea to sky: continuing our journey with the Flock of Geese ....

So far, we've been exploring the dualistic mechanics of the human sensory/cognitive system -- noticing that there's always a time-lag involved, based upon the necessity for sound waves or photons to travel through the space between the "object of perception" and the sensory organs of a particular human bodymind, and then the various cognitive processing which produces a corresponding image (or sound, etc.).

A very easy-to-understand example of this is in relation to the night sky: all the stars and galaxies that we see. Because most of these stars and galaxies are light-years away (i.e. it takes years for the light they emit to reach our eyes) what we're seeing when we look up at the night sky, is a version of the cosmos as it existed many years in the past. Many of those stars we now are seeing have ceased to exist; and many new ones have been born, but are as yet invisible to us, because their light has not yet reached us.

Which is really strange to consider .... and yet no less strange, in a very similar if less dramatic way, are the whole variety of our day-to-day up-close-and-personal perceptions. Like the stars, the events and objects which inhabit our perceptual fields are already in the past, when we -- via our human bodyminds -- perceive them.

And yet .... there's a sense of immediacy, and intimacy, to our life-experience that simply can't be accounted for, via such a description. Why is this?

One possible answer is that there are ways-of-perceiving quite distinct from the rather mechanical and distinctly dualistic one described above. Yogis and yoginis from a variety of spiritual traditions report the emergence, at a certain point along their path, of nondual perceptual capacities -- which seem to function more-or-less independently of the sensory organs. A couple of examples from my own experience:

* At some point I started to notice that, when participating in group chanting practice of some sort -- where the chant-leader would set the rhythm for the chant -- I could somehow tune into the leader in a way that allowed me to begin a particular chanted syllable exactly simultaneously with that person -- while for the others in the group there was a short lag before they joined in. And I could perceive the gap between my simultaneous "hearing" and joining-in with the chant, and their delayed joining-in (the result, presumably, of the time it takes sound waves to travel and then be processed via the bodymind sensory system).

* The second example, having to do with vision, I believe I've written about previously, but will mention here again. Every now and again, I'll have the experience of very clearly seeing something within my immediate environment (say a clock) -- as though looking at it with wide-open eyes -- at a time when my eyes are actually closed. But since the object is in my immediate environment, I can then open my eyes and verify that what I saw with closed-eyes actually was accurate.

Have you had similar experiences? (I'm guessing that many of you have ....)

How is this possible? There are, of course, lots of possible explanations, from the perspective of the various mappings of subtle anatomy etc. One interesting possibility to explore, is rooted in an understanding that what it is that is actually perceiving -- in a moment of perception -- is not the bodymind per se, but rather the Consciousness or Pure Awareness or Light of Tao flowing through the bodymind. And that this Light of Awareness not only is not bound by the bodymind, but actually is the "space" within which both the "object" and the "subject" of perception arise and dissolve; and, even more fundamentally, is the very substance of both the "object" and the "subject" of perception.

So .... if somehow we can shift identification from a seemingly-limited bodymind, back to the Consciousness (aka Pure Awareness, Light of Tao) within which this bodymind arises, which is our True Self, if you will -- we then have access to the "dimension" within which nondual perception happens. It's a big project ... or so it would seem .... though perhaps it's actually very simple.

Anyway, I'd suggest the following two videos, as support, if you feel inspired to dive deeper:

* Mooji's Contemplate This!
* Francis Lucille's One Consciousness, Different Minds

See also: Out With The Cell Phones, And In With ... for a quantum mechanical view of nonlocal communication, compliments of Amit Goswami.

 

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