“Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream. Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily, life is but a dream.”
We’ve discussed the “Radical” part of “Radical Faith” (i.e. no matter what). But lurking is the “Faith” half of that slogan. What about that?
The concept of faith is taken to be nebulous, invisible, impractical. Faith is just faith, it has no logical or philosophical weight. In itself it is no argument and therefore, most damningly, not “scientific.” Yet for the faith-full it carries enormous weight.
Only it’s usually in something outside oneself.
I mean to stand up faith as solid and practical and useful. As real as touching your finger to your nose. As real as a skyscraper. And not based on a phantom. (Okay, well, I’m also going to argue we are all phantoms…) But after the Core Material is published the focus of this blog will be on how “scientific” faith can be. How “Real” it is. Theory isn’t anything but abstraction unless it can be applied, so the rest of the blog will be devoted to Applied Spirituality/Philosophy.
So let’s get past the theory stage as fast as possible. There are just a few bricks remaining for this path.
Let”s go back to earlier on the path, when I was talking of God/AllThatIs, and we can bring in Quantum Physics here:
I averred that there are no clearly defined boundaries, to any thing, any body. I like to say that where we begin and end is more story, more cloud, than fact. Our bodies are an outline and they don’t contain us. Even within skin it’s hard to know where we end and the world begins.
Let’s take a side path for a moment:
Essentially, we live in a consciousness of our own description/definition. We live together in our “outside” world, on this beautiful planet, by agreement. We abide by certain taken-for-granted rules like specific spectrums of light and sound. We adhere, for the most part, to gravity and the surface of the planet, moving our bone and flesh structure around according to physical “laws.” We play with other bodies—persons and objects according to those laws and others that govern the playground.
Make no mistake, these are laws/rules/limits particular to this specific reality. In a big way, we came here because of them. We chose to play by these limits to learn from them, to test our self with them and against them. But we also knew coming in that we would not be wholly subject to them. Do you remember?
For at the same time that we move and play according to the laws of physics and biology, we have an “inner” existence that is not merely subject to the limitations of the brain, our sensual apparatus, and our physical perceptions. Because we don’t originate here, and we move on to other playgrounds after this one.
The only limits to the self who is playing here are what I_You_We allow. At a certain point in our growth as a human we should find that we have choice over what we think and feel, and over what others tell us. What limits us are only the filters of our personally held beliefs and expectations, and those we hold as a group.
I_You_We take for granted many of our thoughts, feelings, beliefs and expectations, and behave automatically from those habits. We make choices and take actions all based on many presuppositions. But we don’t have to follow the program(ming). And I am hoping we stop following some seriously limiting thoughts and beliefs once we know more about the ideas contained in the Core Material.
So back to the main path now:
We agree on (most of) the rules of the physical playground–where the trees are placed, how many miles it is from Point A to Point B. But not only are there gray areas, not dependent on gray matter, to this particular camouflage physical reality, there are wholly non-physical realities inside, outside, and betwixt and between this seemingly solid one. Dark matter, or light matter perhaps.
The next brick is: In truth, in whatever reality/form we find our self, we are more invisible, not physical, not form, than what we hold to be our current form/shape/body. Most of Me_You_Us is invisible, unperceivable—at whatever level and with whatever senses we are using at the time. We can begin to know that “more” of us, for in fact we are never without “it” or separated from “it.” But we usually identify with the visible part—of our self and others. But again, the “bigger” invisible Self is knowable and in constant contact with us as ego/form.
Non-physical reality exists, and is really where we spend most of our “time” anyway. We just haven’t been aware of it in the common mindset. Every night, however, we go to one, or several, of our non-physical realities. For hours, interrupted or un-, we leave our bodies every night, leave them breathing on their own, refreshing on their own, snuggled all alone, while we go home. Why? For play, but often for advice.
Dream reality is a reality. And I_You_We really go there. Sleep is like the halftime of a game, or, even better, a play’s intermission every night. (A commercial perhaps?) Anyway, we go there–somewhere–to consult with the coach or writer/director, about how the game, how the play is shaping up. While there we look at the previous plays, to go over what worked or didn’t. We test possibilities for the next act, acting out different scenarios. And then, before it’s time to awaken/return to the body, we choose a line to pursue, the next play. This is all done without our physical bodies, in another reality than this one, in our dream bodies. A reality with much different, and far fewer rules.
That dream reality is physical too. It is a real land, or cloud, or stream, and we row, row, row there, just like we row, row, row here.
And what is going on while we are rowing here, on this stream, in this real reality? Well, we are rarely fully engaged in the process. We spend most of our physical reality in our imagination, day dreaming, not even tuned to this channel. You may not be aware of much else than these words right now. However, on Earth our body and our environment is the channel, the wavelength we agreed to keep. Our mind drifts constantly in and out of touch with it. Past, future, maybes, really old memories, new fantasies, back and forth and hardly present. But there is only one reality.
And it is much more than synapses firing.
For the next sixty seconds leave this blog. Use all of your senses to take notice of where you are, what you are feeling, in your body and your emotions, come back from the mental gyrations my words have set spinning, and after you take notice of what you are seeing around you, hearing around you, feeling with your skin and bones and muscles, smelling and tasting with your face, take about a minute to just watch your breaths. You can close your eyes and simply inhale consciously and exhale consciously. Then you may come back here.
That was nice, right? Do it often. Get focused in your present as often as you can. So you have a solid footing on where you really are, in your direct circumstances, and that will help you know who you really are.
I_You_We mostly live in an indirect reality–one of news, opinion, imagination. It’s not My_Your_Our direct reality, any more than these “words” have an existence in themselves. I_You_We apply all the meaning to the words and things and events in our life. But that is because we are essentially not physical. The essence of My_You_Us, our Being, our Soul, is simply not physical. And solid as it seems, neither is the chair you sit on (and then again it is…). Yet our Being, our Soul, our life is real…
Here’s the thing, the big spoiler, and how we can make science really know faith: the physical is made from the non-physical, and not the other way around. Matter didn’t make consciousness, “matter” came from consciousness. And really, matter IS consciousness. The brain doesn’t make consciousness either, it interprets it, it filters it, it dumbs it down for use in a limited medium. The brain is not our higher power. It’s a tuner. To mistake it for the creator of reality is like calling your cable box God. Oh wait, it is for some… 🙂
And while we are at it: there simply is no outside and there is no “physical.” Only the appearance, and rock hard feeling of our maya. By our agreement. To be hypnotized.
This moment “in time” is a wavelength, and all the other wavelengths, all the other selves, all the other stories are going on right now. Invisible. In their “times.” We have tools available to us to change channels. We just forgot how to use them, or never were taught.
On Earth, our BodyMind is a marriage of the involuntary—like our heart beating, or our intestines digesting—and the voluntary—our thoughts, our feelings, our beliefs and expectations, our actions. (Some may think our feelings are involuntary, they rush up upon us unbidden. Emotions are both side effects and also malleable—or ignorable which isn’t healthy.)
The involuntary is taken care of for us, we do set it in motion, we do set up blockages, we do make things easier or harder, but it runs on its own. That’s the beauty of Nature. The voluntary is us acting, in Nature. Acting out our story/stories. Acting on impulses. Acting scared. Acting big. Or small.
We have more control of bodily processes than we think, and our body is more aware of itself than we know, but there is one perfect meeting place for the involuntary and the voluntary and that’s in our breathing. And it is another example of the beautiful, glorious design and engineering of this natural physical world. Visible meets invisible, physical meets Mind when we simply breathe consciously. And all of a sudden we are in the Now.
The Spacious Present.
Take a few more conscious breaths.
As for Faith? Our trust in the invisible, the supposedly unknowable, pure Mystery?
When we know how things work—not superstitiously, in fact—faith becomes an act of letting the involuntary and voluntary have their joy, together. An act of consciously participating in it, in creation of physical reality. Of knowing our choices make manifest My_Your_Our world/worlds/realities/stories.
Science is its own faith. This entire blog tries to point to where science (human understanding) will go when it recognizes our daily and nightly non-physical aspect, where it will go when that variable is factored into its equations—especially in the softer realms, like psychology.
Or, not waiting for the scientific arts to catch up, where I_You_We will go when we incorporate it into our daily philosophy.