I wanted to take a moment to blog about my understanding of the Eastern spiritual models of religion. Now, I can’t really attribute these thoughts to any one religion, since most of these ideas are coming from a multitude of books, a little of my own thinking, and personal experience. Most recently I have been reading books by a seemingly unknown seeker, Robert Powell, so I think he would probably have the strongest influence on my current thoughts (specifically the last half of the essay) as they are written below.
When we speak of God, typically most people are referring to a God which is outside of themselves. However, in truth, God is everything to include ourselves, and comprises everything in the universe. The distinction ultimately being that God can’t be split into a part that we can point to and say – “There’s God.” Rather all that exists is God. By definition.
The reason that we refer to God as being outside of ourselves, is due to the fact that we see ourselves distinct from the rest of the world, which certainly seems to be true at first glance. Stated another way, the model that we use to see the world is that which is taught to us by society, that we are separate from one another, which is certainly how the world appears, without true reflection.
This leads us to look for God outside of ourselves. To find God in nature. Or the experiences of others. However, this is a fallacy of epic proportions, since in fact, our existence is really just a very small part of a much larger indivisible whole (which we can experience for ourselves… if we are successful in the next step).
Since the only world that we have true understanding over is our inner world, God (which really means the world and our place therein) is only found by looking inside. Because only by looking inside can we get past the filter of ourselves, to see the underlying truth that we are connected to a greater whole. (When we look outside, the “we” always is in the way.) This is what we call the path to enlightenment.
Further, as separate beings, we get embroiled in wars, and greed, and in self-esteem issues based on our experience as separate beings that then compare one to the other and work towards becoming something. The problem, is that this is entirely untrue, and in fact, we are all interconnected, one body, and there is plenty for all if we would just share.
Additionally, due to our lack of recognition of reality, instead of living in our moment blissfully and just enjoying being, we fill it with actions as we chase the dream of becoming. But we never arrive and are in a perpetual state of disappointment.
Finally, we fear death, since we see ourselves as distinct from the world. However, upon realizing that we are in fact part and parcel of the world, and can never be destroyed (physical reality matter can’t be created or destroyed), and further realizing that at the time of ones death there is no consciousness, just as before birth, fear of death is really a figment of our imagination.
Well, that at least, is my current view of how things work. I look forward to looking back in a few years (or perhaps only a few days), and seeing how my perspectives have changed!