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Monday, April 20, 2015

Language, like Food, has Energy

I breathe air, you breathe air. . is the air we breathe the same? . . . The consciousness/identity issue is something like that . . . we have a 'lease' so to speak on consciousness, a lease granted when we took occupancy of our bodies, of our lives.

Wait, so that implies something that inhabits us, lives within us, is on sometimes, off at other times. It varies, with sleep, wakefulness, how much we're paying attention.

Or does it?  If consciousness is always 'on' what vacillates our subjective perception of it? We've hit some kind of circular argument, consciousness relying upon itself to know it is there. Like attributions to a divinity, could early concepts of "God' simply have been the projections of an elevated form of self-awareness in early man?

Yet consciousness exists. But where? The question asks if there's materiality to something that doesn't possess a material dimension.

Egyptians regarded the heart as the organ responsible for consciousness. The brain, a reservoir of mucus, was removed and discarded before the rest of the body was embalmed for a journey to the stars.

We're looking for where consciousness lives! If consciousness resides somewhere, does it have a locus? A focus?

In an early anatomical drawing by Leonardo of a dissected brain, his note in cryptic Italian reads "Is this where the soul resides?". There's a small arrow pointing to a spot just above the pineal gland.

'Soul' doesn't mean 'consciousness' in the same way to modern psychologists seeking solutions to the hard problem, the subjective "I". Soul doesn't carry an ego-driven 'conscious' label with it; the soul isn't about itself.

Carl Jung and followers tried to caution against Western science's stampede into the conscious sphere claiming that the soul, or subconscious was being overlooked, misunderstood, and frankly ignored at the peril of our very left-brained society. Modern cognitive psychologists for the most part haven't even listened to the Jungian dialogue, representing it as 'artsy', based on myths, and not accessible to the neurologist's probing electrodes. Jung, Hillman and others countered that the greatest hazards posed to the modern world were almost entirely of man's conscious creation, resulting perhaps from his biggest tragedy, failing to know himself.

But whose soul is it? Should we take clues from Jung who introduced us to the collective unconscious? Heightened states of being attained by yogis and Buddhists practice at emptying the mind, clearing it of conscious thought. Doesn't this imply freedom is found away from the subjective conscious experience? Isn't the most powerful 'consciousness' one that is unencumbered, and doesn't require the serial tool of subjective identity?

As always, science has arrived late to a definition of the problem, and even more poignantly, has missed the solution entirely. The West chases a phantom machine, an apparatus lost somewhere in the body of matter.

It may be the soul is everywhere, but that 'consciousness' is fugitive, never setting up shop for more than a few microseconds in one place, characteristic of most illusions.

If we are speaking of a greater consciousness not centered on the ego, where does it disappear to after we die? Is it even ours to begin with? Can it be be possessed, or owned by some other being? These hands that are typing are 'my' hands, attached to me. Without the rest of me they can't work. Man has found ways to transplant body organs, eyes, hearts, kidneys, but not consciousness, not the soul, nor the contents of memory.

If this greater consciousness is fugitive does it elude attempts to locate or entrap it? A. Is the deer in the forest alive without the forest?

The natural root of language indeed produces something useful. Consciousness is language, and one byproduct of that language may be science itself. Science verifies the subjective conscious experience that created it, producing technology, enabling our economy of rising populations, that has made our civilization possible. The Gods are with us, or rather, the myth of science seems with us. For now.

Yet we are in neglect of a greater consciousness, that which we share with all nature. Is our subconscious, our soul, simply a victim of repression by a new sort of self-flattering parasite that has taken over the wheel? We're enamored of the subjective experience, the language using, category creating, diary writing effacer of the earth. Yet what we are, that is a question we do not like to ponder. Is western consciousness, if we dare call it such, a belief based mythos, an illusion, not a truth?

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Think of This

Having come to the conclusion that all matter is to a degree conscious, we might ask isn’t all matter ultimately unconscious of its consciousness? If so, then a materialist dichotomy is preserved. Matter and consciousness are separate. If matter is the unconscious mother of consciousness, then can consciousness survive without matter?

Such an argument may at once seem tautological. Matter a vehicle for consciousness, if so, any bit of matter can aid in that process, all of it does or none of it does . . . or . . .  is matter itself conscious? Our notions about matter, and consciousness are completely primitive, limited as it were by the materialist thinkers of centuries ago.

Instead I argue matter without consciousness is the impossibility. All of it may be alive, and the conscious part preeminent, for a thing to exist the knowing of it must be there too.

Is our conscious mind the fisherman, who brings the fish from the deep?

Western philosophical investigations of human thought haven’t established anything. Philosophy at best has imagined a tour of the architecture, neurologists with their probes have poked around, taken voltage readings, mapped neural activity, without encountering any inhabitants. Consciousness remains as elusive as the unicorn.

What cognitive psychologists call ‘consciousness’ may only be a recently evolved and tiny subset of a much greater conscious awareness. In fact the stream of consciousness in language driven humans today may in reality be a distraction from a higher form of consciousness that is repressed.

To accept consciousness on a universal level, one must abandon the ego, the “I”, the self-referencing component to this entire dialogue. Consciousness is not about ‘me’. The notion that a self-divining root of language flits about the mind and pretends that ‘it’ is conscious, while the rest is ‘unaware’, ‘unknowing’ and obscured in darkness does more to persuade the enlightened that the busy mind may really be the least conscious mind of all.

Why do we assume the whole of the world around us, from weather patterns to flocks of communicating birds, to entire galaxies of massive energetic stars, is separate and inert. Only in recent years have we admitted that animals may possess forms of higher thought and might be ‘conscious’. Yet our view is that aside from animal life, consciousness is nowhere else to be found. Our civilization is locked in an infantile fantasy that it exists at the center. Having discovered our own self-awareness, and developed a language to document it, we believe in our own domination of conscious thought.

Such a fantasy may indeed be part of a necessary stage of development in the transition to a higher level of consciousness. When the ego is abandoned and a kind of universal consciousness is finally accepted as a universal property, when Western science has come to realize what the Vedanta has known for millennia, then perhaps our we can recognize consciousness as a universal phenomena, and not something belonging to the ‘I’.

As for sub-conscious intelligence let’s call sub-ego so that we don’t confuse ourselves. For how often have we heard from someone working on a difficult problem, “let me sleep on it”? Indeed solutions to complex problems without language are not the work of the most self-aware state of the mind. ‘Eureka’ moments seem to materialize out of thin air, indeed it is our ‘consciousness’ which has only become aware that the problem has been solved?  Let’s refer to that sub-conscious intelligence sub-ego so that we don’t confuse ourselves.  If you prefer another metaphor, consciousness resembles the mysterious cleverness of nature, the weather, birds, or the mind of a pet, which we can attempt to fathom but cannot necessarily read.

Yet I posit that this subconsciousness, the sub-ego, the sub-self-aware faculty, is the true consciousness that pervades the universe. Our self-aware thinking processes function more as an executive diary, the dashboard of instruments, the servo-mechanism, for executive action, and and the fulfilling of set goals. It believes that it is in control of a much vaster system, but as mankind may shortly learn, that executive in a Tolstoy-ish reversal, works for the greater consciousness without an ego, without the ‘I’. Self-awareness may not be such an advance as we imagine.

This essay has brought the topic of consciousness to a bifurcation, into a self-aware faculty, “I am thinking’, and the part that thinks, arrives with solutions, but hides its methods from the upstart.

What the Western ego has named its conscious faculties, on the other hand, may only be an illusion, an illustration as it were, posted and pictured by a much larger sub-ego operating system below it. What a perfect conclusion to a infantile illustration, a nascent self-conscious mind, operating with a tool called science, believes it has discovered something unique and precious when it becomes self aware.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

In my House

In my house there's pastry sweet,
Take my honey as your nightly treat.
All I want is ears to hear,
The songs you sing when I'm not near.

All your honey is oh so sweet,
The treat I give, is poetry.
Come at night, with songs to sing,
Try my poems, wear my bling.

Dreams might speak it plain to you,
Night means play, I bring to you,
Try this day, as you cling to me,    
Sing my blings of poetry.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Tom Tom

Tom the piper's son,
Check your messages . . .
And so . . . he provided a puff of smoke,
To the dragon who thought one thing
It rose up and averted its eyes  . . .
then snuck back to its cave.

But no, she of the hawk-faced ministry cried "No."
And called forth the frogs, who in unison chanted, "No-oo!"
Who called the judge, who came out and neatly said . . . .
"Permission denied. The accused shall be returned to the jails."

The girl who moved into the flat above mine smiled at me in the hall.
She has blonde hair and a lovely streak of blue through it.

Coming, shooting from muddy waters,
 . . . numbing beauties, Luddite daughters.
Jupiter moons on a glassy night,
 . . . feathered specks on a glossy snipe,
Hatted jazz-men eat free corn,
 . . . How my girlfriend likes her porn.
Watch me feed her crocodile,
 . . . as we bleed, our love's on trial.
Now the beetle crawls on granite,
 . . . . down the needle, towards our planet.

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