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Shamanism

“Wake up, Neo”

In the below video, I said that enlightenment is the constant state of one’s spirit, thus we’re already enlightened and the pursuit of knowledge in-and-of-itself is a red-herring. That was stated for a specific purpose and is an entry-point into thinking differently about certain buzz-words. I’m going to elaborate, because there’s more to it.

Gaining knowledge isn’t the endgame in terms of the soul’s progress. Yet it remains a useful tool towards the soul’s awakening. It’s the nature and quality of this knowledge that’s key.

“Wake up, Neo.”

In this context, we’re talking about school-of-life knowledge. Specific knowledge and disciplines are viable when they contribute towards self-examination. It’s inherent within most learning journeys across the spiritual and scientific worlds, as with everyday life. Learning metaphysics at one end and perfecting origami nano-camels at the other is only useful when it rouses the soul.

“Wake up, Neo.”

This is why, for example, a monastic lifetime may be as both effective and ineffective as a regular face-in-the-crowd one. They both provide challenges that the other ignores; so which is greater?

“Wake up, Neo.”

Despite that, knowledge which develops a richer learning environment for others is clearly important, even when it doesn’t impact the person doing it. As with most things, it’s a complex eco-system spanning many people, so simple statements aren’t the full picture.

“Wake up, Neo.”

Consider the soul’s journey as a swinging pendulum. It goes back and forth, like a hammer to the anvil. It’s the tempering process of hot/cold, trauma/rest and so forth. The amplitude of the swing intimately relates to the soul’s approach to consciousness. When the soul experiences physical life, the swing can be strongly affected. It can be pushed harder or even brought to a standstill. We’re in the business of the former, but sadly there are risks in the process.

“Wake up, Neo.”

When the swing becomes very pronounced, it’s enough to power the soul into a final awakening, ending the (helpful) cycle of physical rebirth. The good news is that human-inhabiting souls are well into that final push (even though it doesn’t feel that way!) So here’s a reference: at one end we have all the animals on the planet and the other the few humans that ‘make it’. We’re collectively far closer to the latter than the former. Sure, there are outliers, but that’s missing the point.

The sun rising over Moon Peak, in Dharmshala, India. It shows a grassy lip over a hidden valley in darkness. The sun casts a strong shaft of light wich divides the image diagonally into halves of half-light and darkness
The sun breaks over Moon Peak (Dharmshala, India,) made possible because of the mountain supporting it.

I’m not suggesting that huge swathes of people are going to awaken anytime soon. Certainly not in the way the New Age Industrial Complex (NAIC) likes to sell it. Like many structures, the bottom supports the top. This is where entitlement rears its ugly head. Those genuinely at the top should have transcended that, but those approaching may not have. It’s very evident in the us/them superiority the NAIC plays into. Awww, I love them really.

“Wake up, Neo.”

This returns to the opening chat about knowledge being useful for others if not for oneself. It’s precisely the same in terms of this structure, where the many support the few. They do so, for example, through experiential circumstance. Another way of looking at it is we’re in a spirit-soul-human ‘utopia’ right now. It’s all about perspective; a wheel cannot propel a vehicle if there’s nothing for it to turn against. Concerns about whether the track is level remains valid. I believe the track was over-tilted and is currently rebalancing. Like any feedback system, it can spin out of control. The whys and wherefores is a whole new discussion though!

When the body awakens, the soul’s awareness doesn’t change, thus perpetuating its dream-like existence.

One of the biggest barriers towards spiritual awakening is the natural confusion with physical awareness. The human body alternates between sleep and wakefulness, but the soul – being imprinted by our experiences – is never quite awake. The more frequently we instruct ourselves that we’re living in a dream, the quicker we gain control and awaken from it.

“Wake up, Neo.”

The spirit works with the soul and the body in a carrot-and-stick process. The carrot is the employment of tasty-example and reflection as the lure towards full consciousness. The stick represents the necessity, obstacles and degrees of trauma along the way. Some people call that ‘karma’, but that’s another thing in and of itself, though it interrelates. Spirit is multi-contextual, thus karma is efficiently worked through as part of the awakening journey. I should write a post on this, because other sources tend to put the cart before the horse.

“Wake up, Neo.”

Consider the body’s sleep state. We get to interact with the soul at a deep level where our regular thought process is quiescent. Typically, when recalling dreams, it’s clear that self-awareness is poor. At the time, we didn’t know it was a dream and no matter how bizarre things were, it all seemed perfectly normal. So what’s different when we’re waking? That’s normal too, isn’t it?

“Wake up, Neo.”

Here’s the point: when the body awakens, the soul’s awareness doesn’t change, thus perpetuating its dream-like existence. Don’t let your mind-body fool you about consciousness; it’s like a self-driving vehicle that gets subtle steerage from the spirit-driver. Everything is reflected in the body-mind for the soul to witness. Regardless of how conscious we believe ourselves to be, the soul sleeps on.

“Wake up, Neo.”

The pendulum analogy (being also the carrot-and-stick) is useful but simplistic. Knowledge can increase the push, but conversely it can halt progress through diversion. Hence: ‘knowledge for the sake of knowledge isn’t enlightenment.’ Meanwhile, all that knowledge can still prove helpful.

“Wake up, Neo.”

Physical life is traumatic. It can rouse the soul, fracture it and even force it into a deeper sleep. Should the soul reduce in consciousness, then the pursuit of knowledge can provide an effective counterbalance. Think in terms of ‘critical mass.’ The deeper the soul goes, the more potent (spiritually-relatable) knowledge becomes. There might come a point, a ‘Eureka’ moment for example, where everything starts pulling together and the pendulum gets a big energy kick. In other words keep plugging away at it and keep learning. Just don’t fall into the trap of knowledge itself being the journeys end. Only its good application walks the path.

“Wake up, Neo.”

Repeat often: “This is a dream,” especially when engrossed, like when watching a film (try to remember, see? Just like in a dream.) Thinking, knowing and saying it during meditation is also helpful, because you’ll be imprinting more directly to your soul. It’s a time-tested technique to bring about lucid dreaming. Then, within that lucid dream, what are you going to do? How about exploring and tending to the garden of your soul, instead of crashing back into physical wakefulness? And yes, I’m being quite literal about that garden.

“Wake up, Neo.”

Finally: keep rooting, because it’s the soul that dreams, and not the body and physical world around it. As said earlier, confusion is one of the problems…

The revolution begins with boots on the ground