The Road To Becoming A Warrior Part 10
In meditation it is important to clear the mind but remain aware. You can end up falling asleep if you don’t remain aware. So there is a division or so it seems between consciousness and awareness.
Awareness can mean watchful or wary, which is where the word originates. But it also means realization, perception, or knowledge according to Webster’s. Awareness has to do with the information you gather from the senses. You can see something without being aware of it like if you see a table full of objects a few seconds later you won’t be able to tell anyone what was on it because you did not make a point of being aware of what was actually there.
Awareness is then a presence of mind more than anything. So the idea in meditation is to shut down all the distractions in your mind and contact that inner self. See the world from that other self. What other self? Some say spirit some say subconscious some say soul, and of course the Eastern philosophies say the source or cosmic consciousness.
What is spirit? It is usually thought of as an animating or vital principle that gives life to physical organisms. Like a soul it is immaterial. Everyone seems to believe they have one yet there is no evidence that we do. So I cannot in good conscience talk about souls or spirit. They are completely speculative ideas. This would go for a cosmic consciousness as well.
So what I am dealing with here in this series is the mind. The first part of the road to becoming a warrior is all about preparation. From that preparation you can get peace of mind. It’s an ongoing struggle but eventually you can get there. If that is all you want it is definitely in reach. The second part of the journey takes us to different states of mind.
Throughout my years of study and meditation I was sure there was something like a spirit or soul. But because I eventually choose not to believe in anything speculative nor give it more than odds as to whether it exists or not, I came to realize that if I had a soul I won’t know it until I am dead. I certainly looked for it but never found it. So as it stands it is a nonissue.
Yet I was able to achieve many states of mind that are talked about in the literature. The way to achieve almost any state is to get into a state of non-thought. Pure awareness without judgment. If you can reach that state almost any other is reachable. But for me it wasn’t just clearing my mind. That was not enough. I had to use pure focused will. In fact I had to use it to get to that state of pure quiet mind.
But don’t be fooled. You cannot wish or will the state into being in the usual way we use that term. Wanting it does noting. The will I am talking about is a feeling in the pit of your stomach. It is called the solar plexus. When I build up pure will in that region and meditate, I am able to achieve that state of pure awareness. And with that pure awareness comes the feeling of just knowing.
It is a matter of setting up the subconscious before you enter the state because after you enter the state any conscious thought that slips in destroys the state, like collapsing the wave function in physics.
But as long as the subconscious is aware of what you wanted to do when you entered the state it can happen. If you intended an out of body experience you can achieve one. You can live in bliss for hours. But as soon as thought enters the state is gone. It is as simple as that. Hence why we are told to clear our minds of thought.
But in the end it is this focused will, for me, that did the trick.
Yet one state I was never able to accomplish no matter how I tired: levitation. I was able to leave my body almost at will. I was able to reach states of just knowing. Ultra awareness. I was able to live in states of bliss, all with focused will and a quiet mind. But I was unable to levitate.
Why not? Why should this have bothered me? Well had I actually been able to levitate for real I would have had to accept that it really is all mind over matter. But if one cannot levitate through mind alone then perhaps it is all just mind over mind and nothing to do with matter.
Levitation is the only thing that points to a connection between mind and the outside physical world. All other states of mind are reached internally and there are no visible physical manifestations in the same way.
Levitation is known around the world and it plays a part in many legends. But there is no evidence of anyone able to do it, but there are many ways to perform the illusion of levitation which most magicians know all too well. Each trick is very convincing. Hinduism spawned many of these illusions. The floating guru apparently holding only a walking stick often hides a floating seat attached to the stick. Chris Angel has shown several methods of levitating or at least of how to create the illusion. The Yogi tradition has people hoping around in sitting positions to practice. It’s funny to watch.
The only thing I did accomplish was the ability to levitate in my dreams using the same techniques I used in out of body. When in a dream if I feel that focus of will I can lift off the ground and fly... at will. It’s a lot of fun. But it isn’t the same as being able to do it awake and without props.
I am not saying that I have come to the conclusion that levitation cannot be done. But so far I have never seen any evidence of it other than illusion.
Meditation is self hypnosis. And the definition of hypnosis is suggestibility. Hypnosis can be used by a professional to reaching in to the subconscious and getting out all the hidden repressed feelings and needs and misunderstandings we have or to quit smoking. But it can also be used to sell soap and any other message the media wants to unload on you.
The difference between thinking and the self hypnotic state is characterized by the type of brain waves we are using. They are called alpha waves and beta waves. It is known that after just 5 minutes of TV viewing that most people slip in to a self hypnotic state. You can imagine that the advertisers love that fact. A suggestible audience is a susceptible audience ready to be manipulated. Some suggest that self hypnosis can be used to make a person believe they have levitated.
Some would tell me that levitation takes years of practice or that it sometimes just comes naturally like for some of the saints who’s devotion to god was said to be so great that they just lifted off in to the air. The church doesn’t like that sort of thing so usually hid the person from public view. More is the pity.
The explanation I found most interesting and funny about how levitation works goes something this: If you are an earth bound material minded person you cannot levitate because your body gravitates toward earth. But if you are a spiritual person your body becomes spiritually oriented and you gravitate toward heaven. I find that a bit absurd.
So am I saying enlightenment is all in the mind? Of course it is. But that’s not the whole story.