We identify very strongly with being a particular kind of organism, namely a human being. And we consider ourselves to be mutually alike, as opposed to being alike to everything that exists. In this way, we collectively separated ourselves from the rest of the environment by creating a pseudo-reality of us being distinct from a sky, a tree or an elephant – from the whole universe. In other words, by virtue of being consciously conscious unlike any other creature or let alone plant, we created a world inside our heads and made some conclusions about the nature of our relationship to the universe. These represent fundamental assumptions under which we operate unquestionably throughout our lives because we believe them to be the status quo. And we do simply because nobody ever questions these fundamentals – we were just told that life works this way and we accepted convictions and ideas about the nature of the universe by default without too much resistance.
For instance, it is perfectly clear that a bird is a bird, and that it certainly is not a kangaroo or some sort of a bug. Actually we know pretty well what a bird is because we have an association between the image of what a bird looks like and a word that goes with it. Unfortunately, we live in such a way that we mistake the actual living organism for that word which happens to correspond to the image of a bird in our heads.The word itself symbolizes the bird, but it is definitely not a real substitute for the actual being. So then when we walk down the street and see a bird – we do not actually see the bird, because we reduced the organism by unconsciously labeling it a certain way. So we believe that we know a flower because we gathered some information about it, but we do not know the flower.
Because the flower is right there – untouched, not even really knowing it’s being perceived as a flower – but still it exists just as you do. Superficially it may be important to know all the various kinds of flowers, their properties and their names for the purpose of differentiating them, exploring them and collecting data about them. And if you’re a gardener of some kind or a professor of botany you are probably likely to do that. But fundamentally one should keep in mind that the information is not what a bird or a flower is. Because our interpretations of these things, however accurate they may be, are still mechanical in a sense that there is no real life to them.
So the interpretation can be useful on a practical level, but it is secondary to the actual organism. That which we define in terms of numbers or words a flower does spontaneously and organically, because the real processes of life precede the meanings ascribed to them. In our efforts to understand the flower we have lost touch with the real flower because we have mistaken it for what we think we know about it.
This mental projection is something we do with virtually anything.
We know the universe through labels and meanings, but we do not care to observe it first-handedly, as it is, without ascribing data to it. As a consequence of this, we have lost our connection to the totality of the universe.
A cell in a body has its role in the functioning of the body as a whole and belongs as an integral part of it but still it hasn’t got the capacity to comprehend the whole body. But it really needn’t comprehend it because it has its role as a vital part of the whole organism. The cell simply trusts the whole system and does what it is here to do – it does itself. And it has no anxiety about doing what it naturally does, because it does it spontaneously and wholey. Likewise, a tree ascends high in the air and has no anxiety about being seen. On the contrary, the tree branches out in its fullest expression, not at all afraid of being as it is.
This kind of fundamental trust is not something to be deliberate about, it is a trust in the absence of effort.
Because if you are to be deliberately trusting, deliberately kind, deliberately conscious – it means you are actually not.
Trust in it’s deepest sense is inherent in all of us already, so there is no need to be deliberate about it – rather to get in touch with it. But in our mind-identified collective state of being we are conditioned to live in a continual state of fear, tension and anxiety. This is what has propelled us into feeling distrust towards the universe. We do not really fear the unknown but the projections we cast into the unknown.
There is nothing to be afraid about, and no time to waste on being afraid, simply because you are alive. To an animal this is perfectly clear because it lives unconsciously, or better to say, entirely consciously. It doesn’t have a sense of I which is separate from the activity of the whole organism – from the functioning of its nervous system, cardiovascular system , digestive system, respiration and so on. Animal is it – the entire organism.
That isn’t to say that an animal doesn’t become fearful given the right circumstances, but it doesn’t live in a state of constant tension and fear. An animal trusts itself and hence trusts the whole universe because there is no interval between the animal and it’s life experience. In other words, the experience is met directly and impulsively. The animal doesn’t think through it’s existence, it lives as if the experience and itself were the exact same thing. But with people it is different. We have been indoctrinated by our society and foxed into believing that we are separate from the rest of the environment – from our experience.
Our chronic habitual pattern of labeling and organizing the outside world mirrors this inner state of insecurity, and we try to compensate for this uneasy feeling by building false security in our heads. Living in this state always implies a dreary sense of reality because the focus is primarily on thinking, not on being. The insecurity of this moment is precisely what life is about, because otherwise it would be boring, predictable and calculated. And this is exactly how we make it when our foundation for existence is our thinking mind and not the whole organism.
We are thinking too much, and feeling too little.
This has some side-effects, one of which is our deeply ingrained sense of fear which manifests itself as a chronic bodily tension on a neuro-muscular level, and as a tendency to further root oneself in the mind on a psychological level. Fear is apparent in our bodies through the inward motion of contraction – the body collapses, our posture becomes contorted, our muscles contracted and stiff, joint flexibility becomes greatly reduced, energy flow is stunted . The whole body “shuts down” and becomes a carrier of undigested and suppressed emotions rather than a healthy vehicle for our true selves. This condition is always reflected on a psychological level in our inability to trust in life – we are compulsively judgemental, blaming, insensitive, controlling, ambivalent, possessive and overall self absorbed.
These qualities are atypical of our true nature and exist solely as psychological defense mechanisms which serve as a protection against this fearful state we have come to inhabit. Conclusively, as a result of spending too much time in our heads we disregarded ourselves from the neck down and therefore lost connection with our bodies. We have gotten out of touch with how we feel, and feeling is exactly that which connects us with the outside world.
So, enter the body, and start feeling with it. Be with it unconditionally, it is a gateway to consciousness.