In this blog, we had been delineating our beliefs and habits which can rule our lives and bring conflict and suffering.
In our ordinary state, Gurdjieff argued, we are just like motorcars or typewriters or gramophones — mechanically pushed and pulled by external chance or internal habits, never genuinely doing or realizing anything ourselves. 1
Habits are hard to break, even when we promise ourselves we will do so. Experts say that 2/3 of our brain doesn’t care what the 1/3 decision-making part declares. Upon close inspection, anarchy in our own minds seems to rule our lives. Here is a way to explain “why”:
Here lies our fundamental inauthenticity — the I that makes one promise is not the I that breaks it. 2
Actually, in the interest of transformation, this can be good news. As Master Charles Cannon teaches, “what’s in the way, IS the way”, revealing opportunities for changes we may desire. We just have to open ourselves to them, open ourselves to something beyond habit and unconscious automatic (robotic) behavior.
The truthful perspective is that we are always drawing to us that which the moment needs for our growth and evolution.
We are constantly changing, constantly becoming a newer version of ourselves. For, in truth, that is why we are here — for the evolution of our individual souls, fulfilling the primary intention of the one consciousness that we all are — to know ourselves more fully, to return to awareness of our natural and blissful state of oneness with all and everything.
To accomplish that, consciousness has created a magnificent self-referential process, drawing the perfect circumstances and situations to us in each moment. As Erick Davis explains in his book, TechGnosis, “… in its static aspect, everything in the universe ultimately boils down to everything else; but in its dynamic aspect, the universe is an interdependent network of insubstantial agents that are constantly affecting and being affected by other agents… Thus each individual is at once the cause for the whole and is caused by the whole, and what is called existence is a vast body made up of an infinity of individuals all sustaining each other and defining each other.” 3
We are thus an interdependent network -- our teeming humanity of desires, habits, and beliefs. This network:
preserves the fluctuating multiplicity of reality while acknowledging its ultimately nondual nature, always beyond and in between subject and object, self and other. 4
So, the question is: how to transcend the “fluctuating multiplicity” (our beliefs, conflicts and suffering) and experience our “nondual nature” (full of peace and bliss)? The answer, of course, is meditation and — in its eyes-open, “network” mode — wakefulness.
Wakefulness is the original term for that which, in the world today, is known as “mindfulness”. Originating in India, it was adopted by the Buddhists and changed to a word more associated with “the mind”.
Master Charles Cannon, in his presentations, frequently draws our attention to being wakeful and present, emphasizing its importance in our times of extreme external focus. Further information in this direction is available on this website and Modern Spirituality TV, as well as during his retreats and programs all over the world.
Another way to define wakefulness is that it is: “a techne, neither a philosophy nor a passive trance but an active practice of probing and witnessing experience. The practice begins when we sharpen our awareness of the moment-to-moment flux of thought and sensation…” 5
Wakefulness is the perfect start of meditation, for being in the present moment. Progression into deeper meditation is then possible, and we will discuss this in more detail in later blogs.
Wakefulness is the perfect antidote to begin to transcend duality because it finds “what’s in the way”.
It “cultivates and sharpens attention, clarifying the often largely automatic process wherein we ‘choose’ to notice, to react, to link, to pass on by. The more intelligent and crisp attention becomes, the less susceptible one grows to the mechanical habits … Slowly, we may begin to see how much of our reality can be traced to delusional projections, cultural programming, or the repetition of mechanical habits of categorization, emotional fixation, and greed. We begin, ever so slightly, to decondition ourselves…” 6
Thus enters true (blissful) reality … which was there all the time ….
1. Davis, Erik, “TechGnosis: Myth, Magic & Mysticism in the Age of Information”, North Atlantic Books, Berkeley, CA, 2015 Kindle e-book, location 2941.
2. Ibid, location 2941
3. Ibid, location 6756
4. Ibid, location 6756
5. Ibid, location 6790
6.. Ibid, location 6790