Wednesday, August 17, 2005

REALIZATION: No Single Cause

“You said something like ‘the cause of everything is everything that’s happened before’.”

F.: “Upon realization, another duality disappears: the credit-blame duality. The realized know that assigning credit to one source or assigning blame to one source is to ignore the reality of an infinite chain of happenings. Here’s a simple example that might be relevant. Last week, driving along the road that leads out here, the rear tire of a car ahead of me threw a pebble against my windshield and cracked it. You’ve all probably had a similar experience? [Nods in agreement] What caused that?”
Q.: “The rear tire of the car ahead of you.”
Q.2: “Actually, the driver of the car was responsible. I think people who do that should have to pay for the cost of the repair.”
F.: “I’m glad you said that since your comment will let us see how wrong that type thinking is and let me offer the pointer about ‘cause’.” [Participant displays a mock frown. Laughter from group] As I passed that car and drove farther along the road, I caught up with a truck that was hauling gravel…and spilling it all along the roadway. The pebbles in the road, one of which was thrown into my windshield earlier, most likely came from that truck. Now who’s to blame for my cracked windshield?”
Q.2: “The driver of the dump truck.”
Q.3: “The manager of the hauling company who allowed the truck to haul gravel without a cover over the top to prevent slippage.”
F.: “The manager? Or could it have been the owner of the hauling company who was too cheap to provide covers or too negligent to be certain that covers were being used?”
Q.4: “I’ll play along: it was the fault of the highway patrol that is not efficient enough to pull over those creating hazards on the road.” [Laughter from group]
F.: “Or the legislators who misappropriated funds to their pet projects and underfunded the highway patrol? [More laughs] Okay, enough. You get the picture. A series of events evolved in a way that, at a particular moment, a particular set of circumstances also evolved that resulted in a broken windshield on my vehicle. And if we wanted to play this game a little longer, you’ve already shown that we could trace the cause back millions of years to the circumstances that resulted in a boulder being broken down into pebbles, one of which millions of years later struck my windshield. But billions of years before that, an atom appeared in a vacuum, maybe even spit forth from an adjacent universe. And that atom split and then split again and then formed a mutated atom and those two collided and…bang…that collision caused a chain reaction that resulted in our boulder being formed billions of years later. And then millions of years after that, the boulder atrophied into huge stones and then rocks and then pebbles, and because of that happening and because of a truck and an owner and a manager and a driver and a construction project and an inefficient highway patrol and a driver and a car ahead of me, my windshield broke. Ha. Look at the billions of events that had to occur over a period of billions of years in order for my windshield to be damaged. Yet arrogantly, persons want to claim that they know exactly what's causing any particular happening. Persons want to tell you the one cause that they think is behind whatever is happening. They want to credit one thing or one entity or one power. Or they want to blame one thing or one entity or one power.”
Q.: We’re back to the pointer you offered before.”
F.: “Specifically?”
Q.: “About over-simplifying the ‘cause’ of anything. You said something like ‘the cause of everything is everything that’s happened before’.”
Q.2: “And you said that if we don’t realize that, we'll buy into the ancient myths about a single causer and a single creator of matter and energy. And you said that if one can imagine infinity beyond this manifestation, then one should be able to know the infinity before this manifestation.”
F.: “Well, that’s not quite the way I put it, but your version is accurate. The point is just as you said: the cause of all is all that has ever happened. Forget seeking a prime cause. Who wants to know why a particular happening is happening? Who wants to be the one who understands it all? Who wants more knowledge and more learning and more information and more proficiency and more wisdom than others have? The Eternal Truth cannot be spoken. What’s to know? What’s to say? After the thorns have removed all thorns, who cares about any of the thorns? Enjoy the thorn-free relative existence of less knowledge, less learning, less…period.” Please enter the silence of contemplation.
Tomorrow: REALIZATION: AS IF Living