Expanding Consciousness means coming to see reality in new and unlimited ways. Many, in their efforts to achieve spiritual growth, draw a dividing line between that which is physical and spiritual. They then focus intently upon those things deemed to be spiritual while eschewing the physical. When we encounter a certain level along the path towards ever expanding consciousness to ‘See’ that it really is ALL spiritual, our experience of life itself changes.
This seeing allows us to understand that there is nothing that could ever occur that is outside of the ALL. Therefore, even the very boundary itself that we create to delineate that which is physical vs. that which is deemed to be of spirit, is itself, of spirit.
Expanding Consciousness to this level allows us to embrace the totality of experience under the umbrella of spirit. Everything, including the idea that separation itself is part and parcel of that which is spiritual. From this vantage point, there is nothing to eschew, nothing to deny, nothing to uphold as being better or worse, or more or less spiritual. It’s all spiritual. Everything from our physical bodies and minds, our thoughts and desires, money, food and jobs to life after death communication, spirit contact, psychic ability, and the afterlife. It ALL is.
Many who are working towards expanding consciousness like to label physical reality as being an ‘illusion’ while the reality of spirit is upheld as being the ‘truth’ or ‘real.’ What I propose is that anything we could ever come to experience has a certain reality or existence to it. In the moment that we are experiencing something, be it a shopping excursion at the mall or a transcendental experience while meditating, we are experiencing something that is as real as anything else. Experience simply is. There is an ‘isness’ to anything that appears within our reality. This isness denotes existence.
Therefore, in my opinion, the labeling of certain experiences, namely our experience of being a body/mind self as being ‘illusive’ is rather pointless and at best it is merely a conceptualization we use to lessen the impact of potential suffering a particular physical experience may have. When we begin to see that nothing occurs apart from the ALL, we then begin to understand its nature. This understanding of the All, God, Oneness, Source, whatever you choose to call that which lies at the helm of this physical experience, results in a loosening of attachment and an ability to accept that which is presenting regardless of any preferences we may hold.
In particular those who would identify themselves as being non-dualists, seem to want to render the self non-existent along with all of the other ‘illusions’ within the physical experience. But I say, the self and this first hand experience of self-hood in and of itself contains all of the answers we could ever seek about the universe or the nature of reality. This physical experience is not at all apart from the ALL.
Self provides the framework of focus for the ALL to shine its light through to create a one of a kind, unique experience and in embracing the totality of this experience we are in fact, embracing the ALL.
Expanding Consciousness - A Forum Dialogue:
The following quote is an excerpt from a forum dialogue I recently engaged in while discussing expanding consciousness. It serves as an example of someone who very much believes that freedom from suffering can only be attained through denial of the self/mind and ultimately, the physical experience itself.
“The issue of all human suffering is the false identification with the separate mind/body organism through which life is experienced. The 'person' is non-existent. It's an appearance appearing to that which you really are here and now. The idea that you are a person who was born, makes choices, struggles with the world, suffers pain, hardship and loss, tries to make itself a better, stronger, faster person, and finally quacks and keels over, is illusion to the core. It never happened. What I/you/we are was here before the body showed up and will be here when the body is gone.”
My response to this quote: Identification with the body/mind organism is not ‘false.’ It is an experience. All experience simply IS. It may however be ‘limited’ in terms of perspective if this is the extent of our identification. This I would call, OVER-identification. It is only when we identify with something to the level that causes attachment to it and all that it entails and represents, that suffering ensues. Suffering ensues when we become attached to anything and that includes such things as pursuing spiritual growth, seeking truth and having all the answers.
This idea that we must somehow deny the experience before us in order to free ourselves from suffering is ludicrous. We can both embrace the mind/body experience while being fully aware of the fact that we are also so much more. It’s all about the level of awareness we use to engage our experience with. With full awareness, there will be no attachment. With no attachment, there can be no suffering.
To deny this experience before us and to deny the self, is to single out an integral expression of ALL that is, to deny it.
The perspective of seeing a torturous experience as an illusion really does nothing to change the fact of the torturous act. Simply removing one’s identification away from the experience that is occurring can indeed be helpful when we are facing circumstances that might feel torturous, but to attempt to detach oneself permanently from the physical experience, is merely a form of denial. There is nothing occurring ‘here’ that needs to be denied or labeled as illusive. When we do this, we are singling out a facet of the ALL and denying its existence and validity. We are essentially saying that the ALL is imperfect.
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