Sunday, March 25, 2018

Media and the Mind


"Have you ever looked at the flame on a log? One night when I was backpacking, I was watching the flame on a log, and I couldn't see where the flame touched the log. Either there was a gap between the flame and the log, or the flame was so pure and colorless that it couldn't be seen. In a similar way, there is an absolute base in the heart where there is emptiness. This is the place before the Truth becomes alive, before it leaps out into existence. And here, even the union of the heart subsides into a ground of being that is so simple. It is that place 'where distinction never gazed,' as Meister Eckhart called it, where even oneness makes no sense, where the mind of insight has fallen silent, where the heart has fallen silent, and there is just a resting in the simple ground of being." ……………Adyashanti
In grasping reality, the mind goes through various stages and retentions. It also draws upon the varied depositary of memories of related or similar events. The observation of Adyashanti is a very deep insight. Rarely any one of us understand the above fact that out of pure non-observable energy, the flame comes out to the external world.
From the point of view of cognitive sciences, there are many functions of the brain which are autonomous like breathing, digesting and many other biological functions. If the brain has to go away from these autonomous functions into a sequential information processing mode then the processing time and the energy required to keep humans alive would be enormous and subject to malfunction endangering life. Hence vital biological functions are programmed to be autonomous.
Now the brain also acquires capacity for autonomous functioning when certain precision activities in our daily lives need to be performed. There are plenty of examples such cycling, driving a car. Apart from this professional sportsmen and players, over a period of time, acquire instant reflexes which bypasses the full frontal neocortex functions. A good example is the response of a professional baseball or cricket player. When a cricket player faces a fast bowler, bowling at nearly 145 km per hour, the time for the ball to travel the 22 yards of the pitch is within half a second. To follow the trajectory and to respond the batsman cannot operate on a purely rational mode. He acquires a store of autonomous function mapping based on various parameters for which he has learned and trained to become skilled.
Why am I pointing out all these factors is because we think we have full control over our rational mind. The embedded layers of our mind which forms the ground of being of our psyche is built up by exposure to the constant barrage of information flooding our mind through various senses.
This fact is very clearly understood by marketing companies. The profile of corporate players who exploit this nature of mind encompasses different products from food, personal care, home comforts and many more. A false sense of assurance, far beyond the real and sometimes imagined, is promoted incessantly through the media.
The social networks have become an easy and very low cost tool for these players. The reason for the phenomenal growth of companies like Amazon, is the use of social media with powerful software for data mining to predict and suggest products and services suited to specific customer.
There are material available in the social media which completely alters and impacts the academic performance as well as personal orientation of youth in relation to their personal and social behaviour.
Many of you are aware of the disaster caused among misguided youth with the introduction of the “Blue Whale Challenge” on the social media. The number of suicides, both reported and unreported, indicates the extremity to which the young mind can be altered.
The false sense of comfort which most of the advertisement companies promote on the social media goes unabated. The entertainment industry is one that capitalizes on this perceptual need created through the media in terms of long haul soap opera both in the west as well as in the east. There were time when I used to travel to UK in the 1980s and 1990s when social drama was very limited but now with cable and dish TV  and internet channels like Netflix and YouTube, the access to the entire media entertainment is at the beck and call of your hand-held remote.
All this flood of information puts the human brain on overload and what the brain does is go on to a selective filter mode and pushes some of the repeated themes and contents into the autonomous mode which completely operates as bedrock on which one’s perception of reality is built.
The other danger we face is this type of autonomous functioning based on false reality totally block our inner self and one becomes soulless. Most self-destructive behaviours, from personal suicides to a personal sacrifice in terrorist acts, are the result of this condition. The extreme insensitivity to social harmony and ecological health is the result of this mental conditioning
Today the main culprit in what is happening in the Middle East, terror acts in Europe and the school shootings in the US are the result of the crony capitalism dominating our markets. The biggest market driver of war, terrorism and violence is the ammunition industry. The wars in Kuwait and in Iraq were primarily motivated by the vested interest groups in capturing the region’s oil wealth through dictated trading routes.
In December 2016, responding to a question from a journalist about whether or not there is a link between Islam and terrorism, more specifically addressing the fatal attack on a priest by a Muslim extremist in France the previous week, Pope Francis said,
“Terrorism grows when there is no other option, and as long as the world economy has at its center the “god of money” and not the person.” This is fundamental terrorism, against all humanity,”
No religion endorses terrorism. It is only the conditioned mind subjugated by fueling ignorance and media promotion of a false reality by interested groups, which are the perpetrators of this evil.
Love to you all

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Inner Kingdom of Man


“…… Every thought of man upon being evolved passes into the inner world, and becomes an active entity by associating itself, coalescing we might term it, with an elemental - that is to say, with one of the semi-intelligent forces of the kingdoms. It survives as an active intelligence - a creature of the mind’s begetting - for a longer or shorter period proportionate with the original intensity of the cerebral action which generated it. Thus, a good thought is perpetuated as an active, beneficent power, an evil one as a maleficent demon.  And so man is continually peopling his current in space with a world of his own, crowded with the offspring of his fancies, desires, impulses, and passions; a current which reacts upon any sensitive or nervous organization which comes in contact with it, in proportion to its dynamic intensity.” …………..“The Occult World”, by Alfred P. Sinnett, 1884 edition
Alfred Percy Sinnett was an English author and theosophist. He has captured the composition of the subconscious world of an individual in a language that, as best as possible, describes the cumulative process through which every thought from the human mind is either attenuated or amplified to form the building blocks on which the subconscious structure is built up. These building blocks which can be fundamentally classified as ‘Qualia’ or units of consciousness comes with attributes which are generally termed as “a good thought (which is perpetuated as an active, beneficent power) or an evil one (which is described as a maleficent demon), but I would rather use the Vedic attributes of ‘Guna’, namely; sattva (goodness, constructive, harmonious), rajas (passion, active, confused), and tamas (darkness, destructive, chaotic). Though we may unconsciously and spontaneously conceptualize the nature of a current situation and evolve a suitable response, deep down the base on which these individual positioning happens very much depends on the cumulative state of our subconscious consisting of the admixture of the three gunas. The perfect balance of three gunas leads to a harmonious triad of supreme power that has limitless creative potential.
I would like to add a further analysis of the extended process that continuously takes place in an individual’s psyche. The Jungian construct of the entire world of consciousness has to be called upon to understand this process of the psyche. Individual consciousness is the immediate manifest component of the aggrandized subconsciousness of any individual as described at the start of this article. But this whole world of individual consciousness is the floating iceberg in the field of Universal unconsciousness. The universal unconsciousness is the grand integral of the entire evolutionary history of human consciousness which further extends into the planetary and cosmic consciousness.
From this conceptual view point of the entire structure of the world of consciousness, we can understand that we are connected to the entire creation. This grand unified field being in perfect creative harmony, spontaneously acts on any variations from the perfect state.
The last sentence of the above quote; “ ……. And so man is continually peopling his current in space with a world of his own, crowded with the offspring of his fancies, desires, impulses, and passions; a current which re-acts upon any sensitive or nervous organization which comes in contact with it, in proportion to its dynamic intensity.”, is a vital truth, This has further been validated by our current study and understanding of human consciousness and human Biology.
Epigenetics is a new type of science that is growing in popularity and promise in the scientific world. Epigenetics is the study of cellular and physiological traits, or the external and environmental factors, that turn our genes on and off, and in turn, define how our cells actually read those genes. It works to see the true potential of the human mind, and the cells in our body.
This is a science that even eminent scientists are beginning to see the potential in. Sir Adrian Bird defined epigenetics as the structural adaptation of chromosomal regions that register, signal and perpetuate altered activity states. Another scientists with decades of experience who is also leading the way with epigenetics is Dr. Bruce Lipton, who has written three major books on the field and how it can enrich our own lives.
Every thought we put out is not only has a unidirectional outward flow and influence but is very much a universal flow which also influences our inner world at the genetic level. Today every medical practitioner knows that mental stress is the biggest killer and a cause for a variety of diseases such as hypertension, heart ailment and cancer.
Let me conclude with a poem by Percy Bysshe Shelley written by this great cosmic visionary in 1821
'Throughout these infinite orbs of mingling light
Of which yon earth is one, is wide diffused
A Spirit of activity and life,
That knows no term, cessation or decay;
That fades not when the lamp of earthly life
Extinguished in the dampness of the grave,
Awhile there slumbers, more than when the babe
In the dim newness of its being feels
The impulses of sublunary things,
And all is wonder to unpractised sense;
But, active, steadfast and eternal, still
Guides the fierce whirlwind, in the tempest roars,
Cheers in the day, breathes in the balmy groves,
Strengthens in health, and poisons in disease;
And in the storm of change, that ceaselessly                    
Rolls round the eternal universe and shakes
Its undecaying battlement, presides,
Apportioning with irresistible law
The place each spring of its machine shall fill;
So that, when waves on waves tumultuous heap
Confusion to the clouds, and fiercely driven
Heaven's lightnings scorch the uprooted ocean-fords--
Whilst, to the eye of shipwrecked mariner,
Lone sitting on the bare and shuddering rock,
All seems unlinked contingency and chance--                     
No atom of this turbulence fulfils
A vague and unnecessitated task
Or acts but as it must and ought to act. 
                                                                        
Love to you all

Friday, March 9, 2018

Understanding the Language of Nature


“If you would learn more, ask the cattle, Seek information from the birds of the air. The creeping things of earth will give you lessons, And the fishes of the sea will tell you all. There is not a single creature that does not know That everything is of God’s making. God holds in power the soul of every living thing, And the breath of every human body.” …………….Book of Job 12:7-10
"You may wonder: Why is nature constructed along these lines? One can only answer that our present knowledge seems to show that nature is so constructed. We simply have to accept it. One could perhaps describe the situation by saying that God is a mathematician of a very high order, and He used very advanced mathematics in constructing the universe. Our feeble attempts at mathematics enable us to understand a bit of the universe, and as we proceed to develop higher and higher mathematics we can hope to understand the universe better." ………..Paul Dirac, winner of Nobel prize in physics in 1933
Nature is a Divine creation. It is an autopoietic, self-organizing process through which life comes into being and evolves in complexity. This is billions of years old process creating what we call nature or the ecosystem. Current studies have shown that nature, though it might appear to be the result of a chaotic process. Is fundamentally a well-organized structural pattern. There are patterns conforming to now the famous ‘Fibonacci Series’ and similar mathematical constructs.
Paul Dirac sums up his thoughts on the imperceptibility of the laws of nature with the words: “….One could perhaps describe the situation by saying that God is a mathematician of a very high order, and He used very advanced mathematics in constructing the universe.”
Ever since this statement was made, we have come to ever increasing understanding of the nature of interconnectedness that pervades nature and the Cosmos. Quantum physics and the principles of entanglement as well the hyper dimensions in M-Theory has given us a better grasp but I should warn that we are far from understanding or grasping the true nature of the ecosystem as well as that of the universe at large..
Plant biology, with its advanced tools and experiments, has pointed to what Rupert Sheldrake calls ‘Morphic fields’, ‘Morphic Resonance’ and ‘Morphogenesis’. In his book “A New Science of Life” revised and published in 2009, Rupert Sheldrake proposed this new understanding of how life evolves in plants. He writes:
“Morphic resonance is a process whereby self-organizing systems inherit a memory from previous similar systems. In its most general formulation, morphic resonance means that the so-called laws of nature are more like habits. The hypothesis of morphic resonance also leads to a radically new interpretation of memory storage in the brain and of biological inheritance.”
30 years of research by Dr. Suzanne Simard has revealed the sophisticated communication among trees in the Canadian forest. This is what she found:
 “That’s when I knew that I was onto something big… In the past, we assumed trees were competing with each other for carbon, sunlight, water and nutrients. But my work showed us trees were also cooperators. They communicate by sending mysterious chemical and hormonal signals to each other via the mycelium, to determine which trees need more carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus and carbon, and which trees have some to spare, sending the elements back and forth to each other until the entire forest is balanced.
The web is so dense there can be hundreds of kilometers of mycelium under a single foot step. The mycelium web connects mother trees with baby trees, allowing them to feed their young. A single mother tree can provide nourishment for hundreds of smaller trees in the under-story of her branches, Mother trees even recognize their kin, sending them more mycelium and carbon and reducing their own root size to make room for their babies.”
At the fundamental level, all of nature including human beings, are constituent of a set of basic elements which is defined in the periodic table. These elements have evolved in the nuclear fusion of the stars and spread through the universe during the collapse of these stars at the end of their life. The collapse itself is a two way process that we see in all life; namely there is a release of energy through dispensing with all the heavier elements, which form the seed for the next generation of life, and the collapse into the very basic building block of elements which is the neutron or into what cosmologist call a Black Hole or pure gravity.
All these points to a basic substrate of a field of energy or, as I tend to call it, consciousness which pervade the entire universe from which information is tapped in the process of evolution.
In the Book of Job, though the language used is more than 3000 years old, brings out the cosmic dimension of this universal field, which he calls God, through which every form of life evolves both in its physical as well as in its energy of sustenance. The author of the ‘Book of Job’ differentiates the soul and breath in the lower life forms and in human beings. From the foregoing information I have provided we know that all of nature including humans are interlinked and sustained by this cosmic field of consciousness which in the spiritual parlance we call ’GOD’.
If we align with Nature's wisdom then life on our planet will thrive once again. By inculcating a broader dimension of the ecocentric nature of existence a sustainable ecosystem beneficial to all can be established.
All that is required of our species now is that we use our creative imaginations and open our hearts, honour our connectedness to Nature, experience all life as precious and sacred.
Awakening to awareness of ourselves as living expressions of Nature's Dance could transform human consciousness. Nature is calling us back to her now, so that our species once again aligns with the wisdom and security of Mother Earth.
This is the wisdom of Ecospirituality, the wisdom of who and what we truly are in this creation.
Love to you all

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Dismantling Religious Fundamentalism


I think the silent majority know that when scriptural texts are literally interpreted and politicized, it breeds unbridled violence, terror and war. This is true across all religions. This is the reason for what Albert Einstein said is so true:
"The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion. It should transcend personal God and avoid dogma and theology. Covering both the natural and the spiritual, it should be based on a religious sense arising from the experience of all things natural and spiritual as a meaningful unity."
There are two main reasons why religion is failing to meet its true purpose as an enabler of harmony in the world today. The saying of the original spiritual masters have been first written down as scriptures or sacred texts (Vedas, Torah, Biblical texts and Koran) which were trying their best to put down mystical inner experiential revelations in the best available language which had its cultural limitations.
In the course of time a set of teachers who had no spiritual inheritance from the Masters, through sheer proximity to the power centres of the time, claimed to be the authority for promulgating the teachings they claimed to have inherited.
They transformed the sacred messages into a set of dogmas, diktats and laws to suit their own private agenda and to ensure organizational sustainability of the religious power centres, they demanded strict control and subjugated their followers to stringent confirmation through societal laws promulgated as of Divine origin (such as the Manusmriti, Talmud, the Dogmas and the Canon Law of Christianity and the Sharia Law and corresponding strict adherence to rites and rituals).
There is a common element in both religious fundamentalism as well as In the operating agenda of terrorism. This is the element of fear. In monotheistic religion it is the reward or punishment through metaphysical realms like heaven and hell. In terrorism, it is the constant fear of death, destruction and disruption of social harmony through an element of surprise.
 The other reason why this disconnect between spirituality and religion is increasingly happening is due to the fact that all sacred events and their corresponding meanings, which were scripted in a mythological context, are increasingly fitted into a historical context under a misunderstood concept that a historical perspective would render an unquestionable authenticity while they are meant to be interpreted in a spiritual and esoteric manner as revealed to individuals through their own inner experience. This is what the ancient Vedic sages, the Kabbalistic mystics, early desert fathers in Christianity, the later Benedictine, Capuchin and Franciscan and Sufi mystics went through and wrote and preached, but they were suppressed and censored as heretics and banished by the power and wealth centres of religious institutions.
Today with the advent of advanced tools in archaeology such as deep penetration radar and improved carbon dating as well as through comparative literary analysis, the literary interpretations of sacred texts fail to withstand any valid conjecture between what is the intended revelation and what is stated in the texts as interpreted in a historical and materialistic context.
My own personnel approach is that the current culture of fundamentalism and violence cannot be reversed through a reactionary mode but rather through inculcation of a cosmic perspective of individual spirituality. We have to become aware of how deeply our reality has been distorted.
As Morpheus says to Neo in the movie Matrix: “You take the blue pill, the story ends. You wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes." The term red pill refers to a human that is aware of the true nature of the Matrix or the false reality in which we live.
Today science, especially through discoveries in Quantum physics, biology, cognitive sciences and Cosmology, is coming to our aid and it is high time that many are made aware of the true nature of our real self and the basic purpose of creation.
“The very meaning of the word universe is to “turn around one thing.” There is either some Big Truth in this universe, or it is an incoherent universe. We are hardwired for the Big Picture, for transcendence, for ongoing growth (another name for evolution), for union with ourselves and everything else.” …….Joseph Chiltern Pearce
Karl Rahner, German Jesuit Priest and twentieth century theologian, said:
“We are “pressured” from within to evolve. That pressure is what we have always called the Holy Spirit, Prana or Chi. And the Spirit is creatively at work in this moment, urging us to evolve, to become a new kind of human being such as the world has rarely seen before. But what has been rare must now become commonplace.”
A great message was given by great Indian spiritual master:
“Different people call on [God] by different names: some as Allah, some as God, and others as Krishna, Siva, and Brahman. It is like the water in a lake. Some drink it at one place and call it 'jal', others at another place and call it 'pani', and still others at a third place and call it 'water'. The Hindus call it 'jal', the Christians 'water', and the Moslems 'pani'. But it is one and the same thing.” ………Ramakrishna Paramahmsa
Love to you all