This electron microscope photo of ebola virus is fantastic. I admire the technology which allows to see it with such clarity.
It occurred to me that desire to ‘become enlightened’ is akin to a viral disease: it is passed on from person to person, it has many different strains in existence, it often confuses folks as to its origins and it cannot be cured with antibiotics.
Duh! I mean.. there I once was, having no interest in spiritual matters, living life to the best of my modest abilities, neither happy nor unhappy, but aware of the life moments as tides. They come in, immerse one in the cold or hot sensation and then recede, never to be repeated again.
Coupled with understanding of own mortality – it was quite enough really. Enlightenment? The word never entered my consciousness, I swear to god.
Then life threw me a few survival challenges. Not for the first time, but somehow it lead to the question. I wanted to know why and went on a mission to find out. It was similar in intent to McKenna’s light bulb of ‘Truth exists!’, but without such god-mother-fucking certainty of his statement. It was simpler: “What the hell is this life about and why does it suck??”
I’m sure you can relate, cuz.
Within a few weeks I ran into someone who spoke the language which entirely confused me. An indigenous Amazon tribe that never had contact with the outside world (me) – encountered astrophysicists from the said outside world. The astrophysicists spoke a peculiar dialect. They mentioned God and lack of human progress. I couldn’t give a hoot about the former and protested the latter. They spoke about own exclusive knowing and total ego. I laughed at the notion of exclusivity and couldn’t understand the meaning of ‘total ego’. They described waking up. I asked questions they could not answer, which pissed them off.
The more they spoke – the more infected I became. Not only did I want an answer to the original question, but it began to bug me now why I couldn’t comprehend their language. It was like a bloody idiom: all the words were familiar, but for the life of me.. Awareness? Ego death? Self? I could not extract the true meaning. That pissed me off.
It gives you an idea of just how low down the awareness ladder I really was at the time.
It also bugged me that they could not give me the answers to direct questions. All was cloaked in more mists than the Siberian winter. It reminds me of how U.G. Krishnamurti got fed up with Ramana. When U.G. asked our ‘sage’ whether he can give it to him, Ramana answered “I can give it, but can you take it?” Whaaaa?? How much more ‘elevated’ can one man position himself over another? U.G. asked a direct question “Can Ramana give him enlightenment?” Sure it sounds naive. U.G. was a young chap who had just begun to suspect something wasn’t quite right about all the religious and enlightenment stories. And that’s the answer he gets from our advanced master??.. Posturing and self-importance much. Right..
Total war between the ‘Amazon tribe’ and the ‘astrophysicists’ broke out and lasted for a number of years, on and off. As it turns out (and ‘Jed’ also speaks about it) conflict is what provided the biggest impetus to move, what made it possible to grow and to understand.
Harmony through conflict.
I wasn’t interested in enlightenment per se. Everything discussed around this word sounded strange, with too many improbable suggestions, all those kundalinis and third eyes and meditating Indian folks with skinny knees and sticking out ribs… Who the hell wants to sit in such an uncomfortable pose for half their life? Is that the way to be in life? Really? People in Asia are built genetically different to us Western folks. They have pliable bodies, do not put on weight as much and can bend their fingers and limbs at the most torturous looking angles. I tried and did not like it one bit. And why a sudden release of hormones is called this foreign word ‘kundalini’? Why mask the event with millennia old terminology? I kept poking holes in the stories.
I didn’t look for bettering my life, bliss or happiness. And it wasn’t a self improvement project.
I looked for the real, as it was clear to me at that point that lies were aplenty (including the Eastern hys….. mysteria). Somewhere hiding behind that shitload of universal deceit – was something true, and I had to get to it somehow.
Which of course also meant that the virus did get transmitted. It was a person to person transmission of the enlightenment NOTION, the idea of it. See how it works.. without that person’s cryptic and often deluded (as I see now) speeches I would have never followed that particular rabbit hole.
So what? It went the way it went. Two years is not that long to chase the rabbit, right? However, if these freshly cooked enlightenment dudes and dudettes took the time to reflect on own enlightenment claims, if they gave it a chance to mature, they would have noticed that the mind has the natural capacity to develop to a point where it becomes self-directed, self-sufficient, independent of others, able to detach from emotion. Clarity needs no enlightenment ideas.
The Mind begins to THINK, instead of merely think for survival.
That’s it! They would have known it is the natural process, and to quack about this either in books or personal ‘teachings’ means one thing only: adding to ever expanding bullshit.
So you are a ‘know-it-all’ old fart now. Pfft, big deal. Shut up and let the young live their lives: to fuck, to dream, make babies, chase careers, create homes. Let them imagine insults and loves and accomplishments and sorrows. Let them sing songs and chase existential questions. Let them bloody LIVE instead of dragging them into the void. Most will ‘get it’ a few years before their time in this world is up, just like our Cali philosopher did.
Some unlucky ones (Ramana) will get it early. Ramana never lived. He opted out of human experience and NEVER LIVED, only existed.
Because Clarity changes nothing. Clarity is not worth dying for. Clarity is like a movie spoiler: the movie has fantastic reviews, is gripping, exciting, fast and emotional, and here you are.. bored stiff because you know the ending.