Worth talking about, But you can’t really say anything
Some things you can’t talk about, because the moment you say silence, or stillness, you have already broken the silence or stillness.
1. We do know that there are perceptions that really exist, because we experience them every waking moment. We also know through instrumentation that our perceptions are very limited to a certain window of frequencies and temperatures, and that there appears to be a vast existence outside of that window, which we could call “secondary perceptions” sensed through instruments.
Even our own vehicle (body) lives much outside of our window of perception. We have discovered through secondary perceptions some of its inner workings. For example, we discovered the germ theory of medicine. But still our daily life unfolds for the most part confined to our perceptive window. That makes us grounded, in that we don’t need an instrument to navigate. (Sometimes we wear glasses.) For the most part, individual life unfolds as a valuable experience, just through this “human” window of perception.
2. I’ll launch this example: We can perceive thoughts. We can perceive language. We also perceive emotions, and memories. We probably can perceive relationships between these four, some of which could start as assumptions but which we test to see if they are consistent. Let’s state some relationships:
- Muddled language causes muddled thoughts.
- Visa versa, clear use of language creates clear thinking.
- (I’m not saying that this automatically means clear thinking is tied to our concept of reality.)
- We can notice that fearful thoughts cause anxiety, and confident thoughts create contentment.
- We can notice that memory is the mother of all human change.
- If there was no memory, every experience would be brand new, and life would continuously recycle the same experiences over and over again. (Ameba eat food, ameba divide and multiply, ameba die.)
Still on the same example, some people like to ascribe all of these functions to an overlord that they call the Mind. Mind is then a collective noun, meaning all of the above observable phenomena. But the existence of mind is not a perception, it is a conjecture, or an assumption. Mind is a secondary reality, or no reality at all.
Maybe collective nouns are useful, especially if the collection exhibits a lot of uniform behaviour. A “school of fish” swirls around the reef. But what are the properties of a “Mind”, that are often elucidated, but again all through conjecture? If you create a concept entity, and give it concept properties, the danger is that your creation can depart very widely from perceptive reality. In fact it can go anywhere that thoughts, language, emotions and memory can imagine.
3. The commonly stated belief is that a human is body, mind and soul. Body is the only one with objective reality. Mind and Soul are non-objective concepts. Mind we do like to characterise, but Soul is one we say we can’t be put it into words. Of course we can’t, it doesn’t objectively exist.
Spiritual speak is full of references to the EGO. One might define it as: the part of the thinking that mediates between the conscious and the unconscious and is responsible for reality testing and a sense of personal identity. It creates self-esteem, self-importance, self-worth, self-respect, self-image, self-confidence, or the lack thereof.
We are talking about a collection of tendencies, thoughts, language, emotion and memory that come into observable behaviours and exhibit observable emotions (and anxiety levels) as this is our self. There is really no ego-thing there to track or ascribe properties to. Wouldn’t serve better to look at the links relating TLE&M and learn directly from those discoveries?
In short, EGO doesn’t exist and neither are its properties close to true. Another one of those things you can’t talk about, (so why do it)?
4. It is self evident that I am here, and I can utilise my human tools. Do I need to create a collective concept to group all of that together? If I recognise something, I am conscious of it. If I don’t, I am unconscious of it. Do we need an umbrella word to put recognition and non-recognition under? Why not just say aliveness, with which everybody is completely familiar, but instead we come up with Consciousness?
Consciousness is another one that we can’t say anything about, because it doesn’t exist. So instead of ascribing properties to it, we ascribe properties to what it is not. Let’s investigate consciousness a little bit.
If we go to a dentist we get a local anaesthetic, and he shuts off the feeling of pain to part of our jaw. That tooth is rendered unconscious.
If we play with recreational drugs we shut of the signals from certain parts of our body. We can still send signals and move about, but (for instance) no signals come back to say, oh, slow down, your knees are sore, oh watch out for that back-ache. In that condition we might dance all night at the party, and not feel any tiredness.
If we shut off thought with the successful practice of mediation we have freed up attention to have other dreams, thoughts memories or feelings. We don’t really get out of our mediation posture, so I don’t think we can say we are navigating a different reality. We are visualising it, (with or without the use of sight). These are all different realms of consciousness, attained by manipulating the bodily nervous system.
Finally if we go into surgery we are administered a general anaesthetic. Through the numbing of our nervous system our feeling is quieted, our vision and hearing shut off, and all our senses closed down. With no sensory input our consciousness shuts off. Enough feeling is left to keep breathing and circulating blood.
There is no consciousness that receives an injection of anaesthetic. It is all in the body where consciousness can be shut off or reopened, by monitoring the level of anaesthetic circulating in the blood. So where is consciousness? We cannot create consciousness out of nothing, without the natural process of conception and birth, but we can manipulate it.
What is the usefulness in life of often referring to something that doesn’t exist? By doing so we limit the time we are focused on things which do objectively exist. Maybe that is our goal?
Is there a more effective use of our time that will accomplish the same perceived advantages to our life?