neurons light up as the fire Image courtesy of Adam Cohen
Here I give my view on the topic called spirituality, in doing so I refer to that use of the term in connection to other terms such as self realization and enlightenment, generally in the context of Eastern practices, and not the version of the word used in connection with monotheistic religions of the west.
The first thing I want to say is that spirituality is actually Reality. It is the discovery of what is Real. Reality is an attribute of existence,so spirituality is the understanding of the true nature of that which exists. The word spiritual and its derivatives only have meaning in the context of the incomplete or erroneous understanding of what constitutes reality. So Spirituality is actually Reality seen correctly.
This means that Enlightenment and other states referred to in eastern spirituality are not some “other” condition of being, it is not “missing” from your present condition, it is not some change of state or transformation. It is nothing other that the understanding of what you are, right here and now.
Spirituality is thus akin to anatomy, humans have always had anatomy, even if they did not always know of it. The discovery of anatomy was thus the realization of what was already there, an expansion of reality into the domain of belief.
So, spirituality is an objective science, perhaps the only objective science. It is understanding.
In the context of eastern spirituality, this means the understanding of consciousness.
The neuro scientist will say consciousness is caused by the neurons, they will also say that we have no real knowledge of the outside world, it is all a creation of the brain based on nerve impulses..
All you experience of reality appears to be an event in the brain
So the brain is an event in the brain?
The brain is a manifestation of mind like everything else, there is no other explanation.
The most intimate expression of consciousness is the thought “I”, from there it spreads outwards to become the body, from there it becomes the world and on to become the universe.
The universe is not other than what you are in truth.
In fact , although the word or thought “I” is commonly assumed to be an expression of consciousness, it is in fact error or ignorance. The mistaken assumption that I exist in any way apart from the totality, immediately creates another mistake called “not I” and thus into the belief in the duality of object and subject, self and not self and so on.
The best way to immagine reality is to consider what happens when we dream. In a dream we have a seeming seperate existence, time and space seem to exist, we experience emotions and everything else, just as we do in “real” life. In fact we have no idea that we are dreaming until we wake up. Upon waking we realize that we were dreaming, and that everything in the dream was just “in our heads”, made up of dream stuff, mind. Whoever we meet and interact with in a dream, are still somehow a part of our mind stuff, in the same way even the “you” in the dream is a part of the bigger you that is dreaming the whole dream. It may even be possible that someone in “your” dream comes and tells you that in reality it is all a dream, everything is made of consciousness, in reality you (the dreamer) are free from the dream events, the dream time and dream space.
As a part of your dream I am a part of you, explaining how reality is, that you are in fact dreaming.
There is nothing other than this dream, this universal dream in which all is.
These words download from the Great Dreamer into my mind and I set them down, please don’t think that I write when I want, I write when I have to, the words have to come out, it is not “me”.
Yoga is the method by which one becomes aware of how reality is, I have written about it in my other posts.
Materialism, the belief that there is a world “out there” made of “stuff”, cannot be proven, all evidence actually points otherwise. There is no “out there”, “stuff” or matter is just another form of consciousness. This is the only logically coherent understanding.
So, to sum up, Spirituality is understanding of Reality. Reality consists of consciousness, mind stuff. Consciousness creates everything, world, body, brain, self, just like a dream.
If your life is a dream, are you the dreamer?
I think not, the dreamer is The Divine, each of us is an artifact in the dream of the divine. I cannot see the logic to believe otherwise, I am a part of the Divine, but I am not all of it.
Of course, spirituality is not just understanding, what is clear is that if I do not behave in a manner which expresses my understanding, then I have not understood. Spiritual understanding must manifest in compassion and love, non violence. As the great sage Meher Baba said:
If you want to raise the Kundalini
with love and peace from I to you.