Friday, January 01, 2010

Advaita and “De-”, Part Six

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Here, there is nothing that is believed, so there is no one here who wants you to believe anything, either. Here, the invitation is to be free of all that you have been programmed, conditioned, acculturated, and domesticated to believe so that you can be free, period.

F.: The invitation of this series is to shift to a state of de-specialization, to de-accumulation, to de-personalization, to de-identification, to de-conceptualization, to decrease, to deflation, to deletion, and to detachment.

De-Conceptualization [continued from 28 December 2009]

In this part of the series, the invitation is to understand the distortions that are produced by the “mind / concept” connection. The discussion is focusing on certain definitions of “concept,” including:

“A concept is something retained in the mind from experience and/or imagination.”

“A concept is something conceived in the mind, as in a thought or notion, especially when it concerns generalization from particular instances.”

“A concept is the mental representation of beings, things, qualities, actions, locations, situations, relations, etc.”

Persons are especially proud of "their concepts" which are not really “theirs” at all. They are the concepts of others that have been accepted without questioning or consideration. As for "the mind," it is a part of the brain that originally served the interests of survival among humans but that now drives self-destructive thoughts and words and deeds, relatively speaking.

So if the implications of the definitions above are to be considered, it can be asked, "What of the concepts based in 'experience and/or imagination'?"

In the case of concepts that are seen to have merely been “imagined” by someone, then attachment to such concepts can end easily when it is seen that they were rooted in imagination only. In the case of concepts that are accumulated via what persons take to be their “experiences,” then the task of rejecting false concepts and abiding as the no-concept, non-duality Reality will require further understanding.

In that case, it must be understood that there is no “experiencer,” and to understand that pointer requires an understanding of the elements-air-energy triad:

First, there has never been anything that was “created,” including a body. (Hence, there is no “birth” either. See?) All is energy/matter, and neither energy nor matter can be created nor destroyed. Energy is, has been, and will be.

Nothing more is happening than this: certain elements come together, elements which will later come apart. In the case of what is called an elemental body, or labeled by some as a "human being," air circulates—into…out of…into…out of. Meanwhile, the conscious-energy which is manifested temporarily within such a space allows witnessing to happen.

Programming, conditioning, acculturation, and domestication prevent the consciousness from seeing clearly and from seeing Truth. The Ultimate Medicine (a.k.a., the Advaita understanding) can unblock or de-contaminate that energy and Truth can be known (though never stated).

Eventually, the elements will return to the universal pool of elements, the air/breath will return to the universal pool of air, and the consciousness will return to the universal pool of energy.

Of those three parts, which could be “The Experiencer”? None. All that can happen is that the temporarily manifested energy can witness. It cannot "do," so there is no do-er; it cannot "think," so there is no thinker; it cannot "experience," so there is no experiencer.

Next, if it is understood that a concept is a “mental representation,” then the mirage-like nature of concepts can be grasped. Furthermore, if it is understood that concepts are merely baseless “generalizations” that are rooted in misunderstandings regarding “particular instances,” then attachment to the resulting concepts can also be abandoned.

Consider the ignorant persons who had (or who still have) no understanding of stationary fronts and how they contribute to droughts. As a result of their ignorance, person take that “particular instance” and conceptualize an entire series of generalizations:

“There must be some power, such as a rain god, that is unhappy.”

"We can tap into that power and change weather patterns; in fact, if we do what is required to keep the Supreme Power(s) at our beck and call, we can control almost anything."

"Frustrated males seem to relax after having sex. Let’s allow God's representative on earth to have sex with one of the virgins in our community and then—by proxy—that will appease the god and we'll have rain. We can further appease the angry god by killing (concept: 'sacrificing') that virgin in honor of the god. (And we might as well...she's 'soiled' now anyway.)"

[Today, the ignorant who want rain for their crops pray for rain without killing the virgin, but the 5000-year-old concept of a god that provides rain or withholds rain based on mood lives on, as does the notion that humans can make a god happy or unhappy. That "generalization" reinforces the concept of a god living in a co-dependent relationship with humans...humans who are more powerful than their god since they can control how he feels and what he does though he does not have the power to control their moods and behaviors. Also surviving for 5000 years is the concept that cannibalism and vampirism—eating body and drinking blood—still have some spiritual basis and magical power as well. That concept is based in the earlier formation of "generalizations" that were based in misunderstanding "particular instances."]

Other concepts evolved from the drought-rain scenario, also amounting to nothing more than nonsensical "generalizations" that were drawn after misunderstanding "particular instances":

“It still has not rained? Some gods require more sacrifice than others.”

“We need to be ‘closer to god.’ Let’s cut out the virgin’s heart and eat flesh and drink blood and commune with god in that manner.”

“Oh, it eventually rained? Then there are some 'generalizations' that we can draw from that 'particular instance': sacrificing to gods can be seen to appease them; eating flesh and drinking blood can make us and god feel closer to each other; and such acts of worship and sacrifice can inspire god(s) to grant petitioners their wishes (no matter how self-serving the wishes might be)."

And so it is with all concepts: they are conceived, that is, dreamed up via "imagination"; are retained in that storehouse of lies and nonsense called “the mind”; are taken to be truth when “particular instances” that are not understood are used to draw misinformed and fictional and illogical generalizations from those instances;

and are actually nothing more than “mental representation of beings, things, qualities, actions, locations, situations, relations,” etc. If one would be in touch with facts rather than imaginings; with truth rather than lies; and with understanding rather than misperceiving, then de-conceptualization must happen.

Belief in any and all concepts must go if Realization is to come. Please enter the silence of contemplation. (To be continued)

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