The Collective | Consciousness | Mind

O U R N E E D T O U N D E R S TA N D I T

THREE . THE COLLECTIVE T H E N AT U R E O F E X I S T E N C E

he gauntlet has been set, across the board. The way things go — the pattern that appears repeating everywhere — how long before we realize consciousness is a singular entity? Not yet — for we have the incomparable teachings of the masters — signposts only, brief glimpses into the true nature of our existence — being disseminated by those who’ve been captured by the forms and words. The whole thing slides into the realm of philosophy, reason — from the point of view of the individual. Everyone speaks as if there were a vast gulf between us. You can tell right away how far along the adept is. There are few teachers who speak from the other side of the wall, as this doesn’t draw one in. The ego, as important as it is, is made of the bricks and mortar we’ve put together throughout our years — it is the wall. The teaching society, no matter how profound the platform, is yet another facade, another silo. If you are a man or woman of the path, this is an urgent matter to be looked into with a unperturbed eye. If you become enmeshed in form or dogma, ideas, devices — you’ll have to break free of them in the future — at great expense of time and energy. By all means go in, but read the environment. If you’ve reached the point of absolution, there are no

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more contests against your identity. It’s as if everyone has secretly agreed to play nice, to the extent of their abilities. But really it’s your own nature reflected, the pattern that you manifest. In my younger days I received instruction from the Buddhist hierarchy to not react to other’s provocations, but of course there was no resolving the turmoil on the surface. It wasn’t until there was a shift in my consciousness, an opening, that I was able to enter a blissful state — where the need to react was removed, by itself. I don’t think the mind or karma can be directly manipulated — not in any meaningful way. Though the Buddhist teachers had a point, it was a signpost only — a concept that could not be attained outright, and is indeed beyond the grasp of nearly everyone. It means nothing. These teaching devices are from the minds of true masters. You can’t make the leap from ordinary citizen to sage on encountering their work. It does ring a bell down some dim corridor though — doesn’t it? The old masters were not wrong, just a considerable way ahead. It only seems magical or other–worldly. This is the inherent problem, that their example demands a current–day example — and it’s a strange sort of human that gravitates toward positions of authority.
“There are people like tigers, who thirst for blood to lick. Whoever has once experienced this power, this unlimited mastery over the body, blood, and spirit of another human being, his brother according to the law of Christ; whoever has experienced this control and this complete freedom to degrade, in the most humiliating fashion, another creature made in God’s image, will quite unconsciously lose control of his own feelings. Tyranny is a habit; it is able to, and does develop finally, into a disease. I submit that habit may coarsen and stupefy the very best of men to the level of brutes. Blood and power make a man drunk: callous coarseness and depravity develop in him; the most abnormal phenomenon become accessible, and in the end pleasurable to the mind and the senses. The human being

and the citizen perish forever in the tyrant, and a return to human dignity, to repentance, to regeneration becomes practically impossible for him.” – Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821–1881) –The House of the Dead

I believe there should be something written into the doctrine that the promising student or adept be set on his or her own after a certain period of time — a decade, maybe more — to roam freely, so that the full extent is laid bare, the candidate at the mercy of the play of light, with no refuge anywhere. Does the universe embrace one? No? Well… maybe it is you who should do the embracing. At any rate it’s an encouraging thought, that the wise and unformed youth be folded back into society, to learn to live again, as human beings. But what about the majority of practitioners who don’t go through long periods of residency, monastic training? The pattern is already there. It’s not my business, or that of anyone else, to interfere. If there is no great flowering of dharma, ah well… human life is at such a primitive stage. What do you expect? There is not one life that isn’t called out of chaos — the shock of it, of becoming aware of our own existence! It will remain with us until we cease to be reborn. We have very little time in our lives to penetrate this great matter, and coming from our necessarily entrenched views, the resolution is far from us, much too far — but someday. They have mastered me, this confluence of currents. I like the weight of it, the immediacy of being pressed against everyone, made to boil, and evaporate. I’m held to a concrete bench in South Gate. There’s no use explaining. It wouldn’t make sense without a story too much for me to consider. It’s hard to think of anything outside of this blinding light; the moth who never eats, only to flutter against the glass with powdery wings in a prison of sunlight. Whoever has the wherewithal to sort through my observations can make their own reasons.

The lunch shift didn’t show, just today, so they closed down the post office for an hour. My luck, I happened to be there for an hour. Maybe the second shift was busy reading some of my observations? They need some kind of rotating schedule here in South Gate. There are plenty of candidates driving around me. Their cars go by like insects, buzzing and whirling around the lights, purring hotly, impatiently. The slow lanes merge into a bristling freeway like strands of silk on a web. If you haven’t been here, it’s something you must be indoctrinated to. There’s a constant and ready need for danger, thrills. Time is highly exaggerated, compressed, the whole of it vibrating madly like a wormhole between worlds. A flood of wild creatures, racing wheels, and narrow eyes — loud motorcycles wind their way through like sentinels, with helicopters careening overhead, everyone wild–eyed and clinging to their controls, bored with the tedious chore, and full of rage because of it. There are no champions. Everyone is more or less equal inside inside their cages of steel, and, with no one keeping score, there’s a tremendous show of aggression and cowardice. I’ve rode through a thousand towns in all kinds of vehicles. Whichever one landed me here, does it matter? It was a locust shell, which I left on a tree. It smells like sweetgum now, and car exhaust. The things around me are hard to describe. There are so many colors. I feel like digging back underground, but since I’m free at last — free! What a joke! It’s only a matter of time before I succumb. I should be busy recording shit like everyone else, and trying to find a mate, only I travel light, and I don’t want to leave anything behind. The wind feels good on my back like a long poem of summer and dead souls. There are so many of us! The crows sing overhead as if continuing the thought. A traffic jam forms in front of me and disperses like a line of ants, but I lose sight of them in the whirlwind. I’m pressed again between the cool, dark limbs. As it grows dark, and the time for me to speak

with you draws to a close, I’m transfixed by a parade of coffins. Keep it quiet. No church bells, no last kiss. Bach please, the organ pieces. They’re so sad and mocking. I understand him. *** The work has been frantic. This season is full of challenges to my dignity, my livelihood. From the center of this cacophony I’m pleased to note that I remain unperturbed. Truly my life has become its own reward. The moon hangs large in the sky tonight. Is there some correlation? This wild energy… maybe it’s too much for me. I sometimes feel that my life is only for a moment more — from the intensity. I’m sure it doesn’t appear that way from outside. All the great ones speak about this curling energy, yet most are completely unaware, even doubt that it exists. Why have we turned cold in such large numbers? It’s as if the nature of consciousness is not at all singular, but a collective. We see what everyone else sees, so deep, so prevalent our code that there are few anomalies. There nearly has to be a revolution — and what for? Why are some inclined to look into the nature of our existence rather than enjoying our time here? We did not get where we are by not being the cruelest and most cunning. Our history is not one of resting on our laurels. If there’s no press forward… none of this — there would not be anything. There is an innate respect for those who are pushing the envelope. And those trapped behind the wall, swayed by the thoughts and opinions of others, who are unable to fathom the magnificent pattern, instead focusedon the mundane? Why is it that so many great things are lost to time? How many brilliant minds were taken down out of fear? Why are the Aztecs in ruins? Stonehenge? The great pyramids of Egypt? So many things we are oblivious to, that we ourselves have devoured and left to dust and ruins.

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