The Nature of Reality
Consciousness itself is the source of everything. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
From the substrate of noumenon ushers all phenomena. The performance of Nature by coherence entertains Ĉonsciousness. This is known because those who become enlightened – those with a clear connection to Ĉonsciousness – invariably feel bliss. If the intent of our lives is to enjoy the show, it is merely an echo of Ĉonsciousness regarding Nature as a whole.
It is the nature of appearance to appear to be real, even though it is unreal. ~ Vasistha
Nature itself is emergent: instantly composed energetically via quantization into fantastically complex structures which appear substantial. This moment-by-moment process is the same as in the mind: atomic symbols, taken as sensation, are assembled into edifices of meaningful representations via perception.
That which is seen is reflection of one’s own consciousness. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
Contrary to the classical physics’ law, there is no conservation of energy, as energy is nothing but a concept. There can be no conservation of nothing.
We are almost certainly living in a simulation. ~ Swedish philosopher Nick Bostrom
Nature may be construed as a holographic information system, distributed in space and manifesting through time. The existence we experience merely conforms with operating principles of a mind in an entertainment platform.
Time is in the mind. Space is in the mind. The law of cause and effect is also a way of thinking. In reality all is here and now and all is one. Multiplicity and diversity are in the mind only. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
The mind reflects its environ – coherence having structured mentation for the life form to which it applies.
What we take to be Nature is our own nature. The two are indivisible. The world we see as being without is the world within.
(This observation is validated by the fact that different people may interpret the import of an event divergently. Meaningful representation is an expression of worldview, which reflects one’s mental frame in the moment. Sharing the same event is illusory, as every event is independently perceived. The nature of duality is individuality.)
On the stage of spacetime whirls an endless gyre of desire, with an animated intent: life. With its multifarious meaning, the term organic is ideally apropos: naturally occurring, systemically organized, coordinated, and alive.
A human being is part of the whole called by us universe. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest: a kind of optical delusion of consciousness. ~ Albert Einstein
From the perspective of an observer, quantum physics’ uncertainty principle posits the present as particulate, while the future lurks as an indeterminate wave. Whereas the present presents itself in material form, the pending moment is a probability, premised on the undulation at the leading edge of now.
A salient point of the uncertainty principle is in the definition of manifestation: that existence only comes into being with conscious perception. Whether a probabilistic wave collapses into particulate form requires observation. The witnessing of Ĉonsciousness suffices.
This seed Ĉonsciousness is the cause of experience, which in no time takes on the form of the universe. If you see the unreality of this Ĉonsciousness, the experience disappears along with one who experiences. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
Reality may be construed as a nested hierarchy, with outer layers being forces to what manifests in inner layers. Noumenon is an unmanifested shell to phenomena produced by coherence in the exhibition of Nature.
Coherence is the mathematical, fundamental force for generating phenomena. Coherence creates the interwoven, waveform fabric of energetic existence which naturally quantizes into particulate form as matter. Coherence is the mind of Nature. Like Ĉonsciousness, coherence also localizes.
Ĉonsciousness provides the awareness by which coherence fabricates phenomena. Like matter, Ĉonsciousness manifests in quantized form, as souls in living organisms. The duality of all proximate phenomena is ultimately illusory.
All is pure Ĉonsciousness and nothing but that. Everything – form, diversity, and appearance – is actually Ĉonsciousness and in fact non-material. ~ Indian guru Anandamayi Maa
Like a mirror with reflective backing to light-absorbing glass, the power of introspection – silent witnessing of one’s mind – derives from consciousness, which is the interface between noumenon and phenomena. The witnessing capability of consciousness allows introspection, and so provides the basis upon which realization – learning the true nature of self and reality – is possible.
Pure witnessing is unaffected by whatever it contains. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
The mists of time obscure beginnings. It cannot be known when the first of our kind attained unity consciousness, or even how they tried to convey it to those not enlightened. What is known is that epigrams about enlightenment have passed down from ages which now seem mythical. 2 emanate from the most ancient civilizations: China and India.
Evolved individuals hold to the Tao and regard the world as their pattern. ~ Lao Tzu
Lao Tzu (6th or 5th century BCE) was a legendary Chinese guru. The name itself is an honorific title meaning venerable master. Next to nothing is known about Lao Tzu as a person. Some think he lived before Confucius (551–479 bce). Some think he lived later. Some think he was Confucius.
The great Tao extends everywhere. It does not have a name. ~ Lao Tzu
Lao is credited with writing Tao Te Ching (The Virtue of the Way), a compilation of 81 brief recitals.
Tao acts through natural law. All things depend upon it for growth, and it does not deny them. ~ Lao Tzu
The meaning of the Tao has been subject to endless speculation by the unenlightened. It has even been used as a fortune-telling device; an ironic employment of timeless wisdom.
It is a famous puzzle which everyone would like to feel he had solved. ~ American East Asian scholar Henry Holmes
The Chinese diagram symbolic of the Tao geometrically represents the interplay of 2 opposite principles: yin and yang. Yang is masculine, active. Yin is feminine, receptive. Together, yin and yang represent the eternal generation of diversity. They are enclosed in a circle, which symbolizes the unity that is the ineffable Tao.
The Tao never acts, and yet is never inactive.
So formless, so intangible.
When Tao is expressed, it seems without substance or flavor.
We observe and there is nothing to see.
We listen and there is nothing to hear.
We use it and it is without end. ~ Lao Tzu
Lao Tzu’s Tao poetically alludes to noumenal Ĉonsciousness as the springboard to phenomena; it’s that simple.
Freedom is won in realizing the true nature of self. Matter is transcended. The nature of being and the force of absolute knowledge are then revealed. ~ Patañjali in Yoga Sutra
Yoga arose in India around the 5th century BCE. Though yogic practices have been various, including physical postures, the aim has always been quieting the mind.
The classical work on the rudiments of yoga is the Yoga Sutra, attributed to legendary Indian guru Patañjali (~250 BCE). Sutra means thread, etymologically related to the English term suture.
The basic text of Yoga Sutra is only 191 short sentences, enveloped in a prodigious mass of commentary tacked on in the centuries that followed the original fabric of threads.
Yoga Sutra begins with “instruction in Union.”
Union is restraining the thought-streams natural to the mind. Then the seer dwells in his own nature. ~ Patañjali
Yoga Sutra goes on to describe the afflictions of ignorance, the spiritual discipline required to achieve realization, and the results.
When the mind maintains awareness, yet does not mingle with the senses, nor the senses with sense impressions, then self-awareness blossoms. ~ Patañjali
Meditation modifies the mind, which has for its substratum nothingness. ~ Patañjali
Meditation as a means to achieve enlightenment is universal in the teachings that come from ancient times. That this prescription transcends cultures for all time indicates its inestimable value.
Subjectivity & Objectivity
Whether mythic or scientific, the view of the world that man constructs is always largely a product of the imagination. ~ French biologist François Jacob
Western views on reality bifurcate into 2 diametric schools: objectivity versus subjectivity. Subjectivity embraces manifestation as necessarily an experience of individual consciousness: the world is in one’s own mind. Objectivity is the notion that reality is outside of individual consciousness, which offers only a peephole to the ‘real’ world.
All that reaches us from the world are a few rays of light hitting our retinas, and a few air molecules vibrating in our eardrums – images and echoes. So how can we really know anything about the outside world? ~ American psychologist Alison Gopnik
Philosophic subjectivism was eschewed by empiricists, who triumphed in the modern world with their ‘scientific’ stance that reality is external to its observers. The only evidence of objectivity is that individual observers, through admittedly subjective perceptions, may concur about events, and thereby imagine an existence independent of its witnessing – shared subjectivity as a guise for objectivity.
Whereas the 2 schools are irreconcilable philosophical opposites, they are commonly treated as merely facets of existence: an external, objective world is merely juxtaposed to the private, subjective world. This conceptual tack is a philosophical duality: belief in both mind and body – whereas the products of the mind may be disputed as subjective, bodies are considered objective, as their existence is subject to consensus.
The mind and feelings are external, but you take them to be intimate. You believe the world to be objective, while it is entirely a projection of your psyche. That is the basic confusion. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
◊ ◊ ◊
I think, therefore I am. ~ René Descartes
Individual consciousness is undeniably apparent. Taking this fact to its logical conclusion produces solipsism: that only the self can be proven to exist. After all, all you ever really know of Nature is through your own awareness. (Here we have the foundation of skepticism: to doubt that fact should be taken at face value.)
Nothing perceived is independent of perception and perception differs not from the perceiver, therefore the universe is nothing but the perceiver. ~ Indian polymath Abhinavagupta
Solipsism cannot be disproven. Instead, through the influence of others it is ubiquitously brushed aside: typically, around the age of 5 years, regardless of culture.
The world you can perceive is a very small world indeed. And it is entirely private. Take it to be a dream and be done with it. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
Only through social consensus – that our perceptions correspond with others – do we come to believe in objectivity. That others share seemingly identical experiences deceptively validates the appearance of an objective reality.
The worldliness of living things means that there is no subject that is not also an object and appears as such to somebody else, who guarantees its ‘objective’ reality. What we usually call “consciousness,” the fact that I am aware of myself and therefore in a sense can appear to myself, would never suffice to guarantee reality. ~ Hannah Arendt
Discerning the interface between the mind and body – mind-body problem – dispatches duality as untenable. Further, the matterist approach of neurobiology has no answer as to how the mind arises, nor how organisms without brains could possess awareness or make decisions. That a proximate mind exists is undeniable, even for neurobiologists.
The first fact is that thinking of some sort goes on. ~ William James
Modern physics has shown that existence is essentially energetic, fashioned into coherent waves of information, entangled into a manifest fabric. If there is objectivity, then reality must ultimately be noumenal, as energy is nothing but a concept.
We are neither matter nor energy, neither body nor mind. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
Given energyism, shared experiences show that reality must be entirely within a communal Ĉonsciousness. As Nature necessarily is of dualistic diversity, subjectivity must arise – but it is illusory, as is objectivity, which can only be shared perceptions. This platform for experience – of common subjectivity via Ĉonsciousness – is showtivity.
As long as we imagine ourselves to be separate personalities, one quite apart from another, we cannot grasp reality, which is essentially impersonal. First, we must know ourselves as witnesses only, dimensionless and timeless centres of observation, and then realize that immense ocean of pure awareness, which is beyond both mind and matter. ~ Nisargadatta Maharaj
Accepting showtivity as the modus operandi for all individual perceptions of every conscious entity still leaves the issue of how the illusion of objectivity may be projected, such that shared subjectivity may arise. The only possible answer is that all occurs within a universal mind. Just as localized consciousnesses are composed from a universal Ĉonsciousness, so too individual minds must be portions of the universal mind.
Note that universal mind is a synonym for coherence: the interaction which delivers order to the universe in its composition of Nature. For what is order but its perception?
Embracing the idea of a universal mind reclaims objectivity, albeit in an immaterial and paradoxical way. Matter is a deception created in the mind. All that exists are concepts, and concepts don’t exist.
Further, all that one can ever know are encountered concepts: ones that seem to appear external to oneself are considered facts, whereas those that are acknowledged as not having a factual foundation per se are mere ideas: the raw constructs from which beliefs are fabricated. With this recognition, subjectivity again moves to the fore, with objectivity a hazy, unknowable backdrop that is nothing but a conceptual sketch which may only appear whole via showtivity – did you see that too?
◊ ◊ ◊
Just as Nature is distributed deception, existence is atomized insignificance. The definition of significance is assignation of importance. As Nature proceeds regardless of its material composition, its components cannot be construed as meaningful in and of themselves. In the theater of Nature, there are only bit parts: no lead actors.
The objects in space that appear before you are guises for gyres of entangled interactivity. To assign meaning is only a personal attachment: the root significance of subjectivity.
Assigning significance is the sine qua non of perception: the means by which attention is doled out. Living is both enriched by meaning and possible only by giving meaning.