The Droppage of Time

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No problem here. Always home.

Whenever I am faced with a problem, a problem where a solution isn’t immediately apparent, I tend to seek the origins – Many times, simply by understanding the genesis of a problem, how it began, its origin – is more than adequate to ‘solve’ the problem. Many times, it is shown to me that a problem never actually existed.

This is a practical application. But I often, daily, tackle the ‘problem’ of this life – I say ‘problem’ because life, to me, is like a riddle – a puzzle – What is the meaning of life? Yes, I Go Big in my life- why not? This life mystifies me and I want to understand all I can. I am curious. But, also, I am dis-satisfied with this life. So much suffering in this world – and this includes my own. Now please understand my life is great, in so many ways – I am just not satisfied in my understanding of it – particularly in understanding of suffering.

So this riddle of life- seeking the origins – I merge the koan of ‘What did your face look like before your parents were born?’ with where the scientific ‘what were my thoughts as my brain was developing in my mothers womb?’ – seeking origins, falling into an infant, a fetus, swirling and spinning, realizing that it is not I that is tumbling and swirling but rather time – linear time falls into the fetus. I can’t fall anywhere. What do I mean? It’s confusing – and it makes me think about a recent discovery in physics – merging the infinite (gravity) with the smallest (quantum) and spitting out a strange form of ‘time’.

Time flows forward not because of entropy, but because only a thinking mind can make distinctions. When we drop the thinking mind, we drop time.

Dropping time does something quite remarkable – it has to by its inherent nature – or lack there of – See, thinking in nuts and bolts, this universe is real, and in a very real way, 14 billion years ago, all of EVERYTHING, was infinitely tiny – one unified dot. That’s the power of the thinking mind – so powerful we can figure out it is more like 13.772 billion years old. But when we drop this thinking mind – does the Universe revert back to the Big Bang? No – revert implies time. All of all times all exist at the same time – and that time is now – and now now and so on. Now.

When a person speaks how ‘all is one’ and there is no separation between oneself and the Universe, this is what they mean – but these words really suck. They do! Saying there is no separation between two things , well, kinda separates it out. But that’s the limits of words – Are there better words? Perhaps. I am not sure I know them!

So, I am a scientist. But the realm of spirits, angels, goddesses and gods do dwell deep inside the folds of time. How can I say this, scientifically? Well, there are a few very important things I learned about science over my career and education:

One: all of science is through the lens of human’s minds. Nothing wrong with that in and of itself, but it is a human endeavour. That’s the point to always keep in one’s head when studying science. (To be even more critical, just look at who is paying for the research and why).

Two: Humans find the facts that fit the models we build. It doesn’t mean the facts are wrong (they can’t be by definition) but we can only find facts where we seek (usually).

Three: If something is not falsifiable, a key tenet of science, that does not make it untrue.

This last one is the most important.  – From the most simple example, say, of a piece of complex electrical equipment that has an intermittent fault – those are the worst kinds as they are almost impossible to figure out as you can’t replicate the error consistently. It doesn’t mean the error doesn’t exist, you just can’t study it properly – and the service engineer will start to think the data is not correct (ie the human is lying  or wrong about the error)!! To the most beautiful of Einstein’s theory on gravitational waves – you see as it couldn’t be tested at first, it bordered on being not scientific. He was very smart – and correct- even if it took decades or a century to be proved correct.  But back to my point, just because an experience or thought is not repeatable, or falsifiable does not make it untrue. It makes it unscientific , yes, but it does not mean it is not true. This easy thought to grasp took me my whole life to accept, or to realize. It has allowed me to witness those unscientific experiences with more honesty and truth. The true scientist keeps seeking – just like Einstein’s unscientific theory was one day falsifiable, perhaps one day my ancestors who visit me through the droppage of time will be falsifiable.

As I can admit I honestly do not know what lies after death, I am attacking this life I have whilst alive. I want to understand what this life is – and how to help others not suffer or find life unsatisfactory. As a great man says, We are all simply just walking each other home. 

So, part of my exploration is having faith in a ‘solution’ to this riddle of life. Having faith that so many various consciousnesses are helping me right here, right now, from the distant past, to the incredible future. Are these all but not oneself and all of us? I used to like to say a-lot “All is one … just time-displaced”. I still like it and maybe I’ll make a bumper sticker one day!

But,

But, when we allow ourselves to drop time, well, All beauty is all unfolded already. It’s home.

 

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Witnessing Ram Dass

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Sometimes I crack myself up when I see myself seeing myself. Who is it that is cracking up?

I have been thinking lots about something I heard recently from Ram Dass. He was talking about being a witness to our thoughts and actions… a witness to ourselves…

I say I have been thinking lots about this, and whilst that is true, I have not tried to penetrate deeper meaning into it. That is unusual for me, but it is for two reasons I have left it alone – 1) the thought felt complete enough on its own – I didn’t feel my normal sense of ‘dharma-battle’  of attacking a ‘teaching’ to see what fails in the attack and what holds true; and 2) because of #1, I felt a conscious decision to not mess about with the thought – as it would only become mental masturbation (which I absolutely love lol).

But back to the thought – the reason I have been thinking about this thought so much – or rather, holding this thought – is because this is what I do, almost always- I am witnessing my life before my eyes – I am usually ‘stepped back’ . I can see Richard getting excited, or upset, or sad – I can see how Richard needs to move, or act, or think to accomplish Richards’s goals. It is odd. Who is this witness?

Yes – who is this witness?

I see Richard’s life unfolding and I rarely get caught up in this unfolding – I would just get in Richards way otherwise, lol. When I find myself not being a witness – I feel like a slave to my thoughts and emotions – or rather- I sense my witness trapped and unable to help the maniac who is freaking out!

Have you ever gotten really angry? Super pissed off, fuming – and in the middle of that emotion laughed? Laughed because perhaps you saw your face in the mirror and you looked, well, funny! Red face, downturned eyebrows, scowl ? Or laughed simply because you realized your brain was freaking out of control ?

Have you ever sensed that witness in those situations and felt, ‘no, they aren’t allowed in here right now, I have the right and I deserve to feel this anger – it is justified!!’.  Your witness obeys –it must – and cries in the back of your hollow skull.

So, who is the witness? Who is the Master? Should not the master listen to the witness? Then does not the witness become the master? If the witness always stays the master, than the old master becomes the servant.

BE careful – do not detach yourself from your witness or your master. Ultimately, these are just made-up distinctions. It’s all made up. The master, the witness, they are the same, and neither exists. I say this only so attachment isn’t given to any of this.

So, back to my point – who is this witness who is witnessing myself?

It is still an illusion, the witness – when you are ‘stepped back’ and see yourself doing whatever – making yourself crack up laughing when the witness sees you freaking out – whatever – turn that witness onto itself – witness the witness.  WHO turned that anger into laughter?  – Now the laughs turn into something else – wonderment – at a minimum – of what is ‘witnessed’.

 

 

Your future self wants to say hello to you!

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My future self has white hair… and dandruff!

The past and the future …. Many people have their minds existing in these illusionary places…. Living in the past or dreaming of the future…. In Zen, it could said that we strive to have our minds exist in the present moment..To be mindful of what is occurring now.

In practice, it may seem very hard to truly be ‘in the present’ ‘in the moment’ ..

At some point, after meditation and deep thought, a certain realization may occur… This striving to be in the moment, to stop living in the past and to stop desiring the future… is not very hard at all. In fact, we may see the opposite.. it is very hard to live in the past, and very hard dreaming of the future!

So, say, for example, we try to reverse our goal – to avoid fully living in the present and only live in the past and future – we realize something – you can’t escape the present! You simply can’t do it! lol

So, we may reach a point where we see that this is all there is.. this present moment – we may see that in this present moment, we can think of the past, we can visualize the future – but its only done right now. It can only be that way. This is all you have. It is really, really simple. This is it. Right now. It can never leave you no matter how hard you try!

All of the past and all of the future can only be contained and exist in the present.  The arrow of time is not straight…. Just as the horizon on Earth makes the world seem flat.. at some point we can begin to see it’s not straight, not flat and it curves…so much it loops back onto itself. This is how the future can influence the past. Sound crazy? Perhaps! Lol.  But the scientific method of seeking truth is also coming to this realization.

So what does this all mean other than giving me a headache? Lol.

For me, sometimes when I am struggling and suffering, I try to think about my ‘future Richard’ – and I know he has my back and I know he is affecting me right here, right now, sending me deep love and understanding. I love that guy.

Of course these are all just words, just models, conceptions.. but I hope they may serve as a medicine when taken as directed. 😉

Low self esteem

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London palm. Wisdom radiates and pulses throughout the cosmos, straight into my heart. 

Sometimes during contemplative reflection I become utterly disgusted with myself. I amaze myself that I allow myself to think and do certain things, that, when I look back objectively, I am stunned at myself.

Having low self-esteem is not healthy, of course, and meditation is usually not thought of as something to make you feel worse about yourself! lol.

Confronting our true selves can be hard. It is painful to accept we may not be the person we want to believe we are.

Ultimately, our true self is not ourself, and although we must have individual responsibility, we can never bear the load alone, no matter how isolated that burden may feel.

(I must say that sometimes during meditation I become utterly elated with myself… and although this may feel super awesome, it has its own dangers… mainly of reinforcing the illusion of my own self ego, but that’s a whole other story!)

Outrageous!

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(not my own photo)

I remember many years ago seeing a bumper-sticker and it really resonated with me. In our world, there are numerous things to be outraged about..and the more you look, ie. pay attention, the more outrageous things you will see.. and this will start to extend into things that are currently accepted as legal and normal…

I think the bumper sticker needs another verse however:

If you’re outraged, you’re not paying attention!

This brings it back home, back inside. … When we view our world, we may get full of rage, outrage… and feel more than justified… for example, feeling rage when learning about 53 people being murdered in a nightclub. No matter how justified we may feel with this emotion of hatred and rage, we should look at the origin of this feeling. (The origin is the shooting, idiot!) Anger and rage are natural.. why did we evolve these feelings? To help our survival… to put us in a fight-or-fight response. However, when we see these images on our computers, thousands of miles away perhaps, the flight-or-fight response becomes unnecessary…. we are too far away to help protect the people and too far away about trying to get away from the danger. Sure, you may say that rage fuels our fight response, which we can take to stopping others before they get the chance to do the same in the future. But this type of ‘fighting’ would require a strategy, and therefore the immediate ‘fighting’ could not be achieved (ie. the rage we may feel can not be acted up in a constructive way).

So, bringing it back inside ourselves… if we pay close attention, we do not need to be filled with rage, it will not help anyone. Sure, when we first learn of horrific events, we may feel anger and rage.. that is natural… but it is not natural to hold onto this anger… in nature, we evolved to have an immediate response to this anger…

When we look inside ourselves, we may see that running or fighting/protecting isn’t a valid choice given our position. So what shall we do? Let it fall away and see what remains… Once the anger and rage are released, we may begin to see things more clearly and have a better idea of what could be done.

 

 

Connection of the unconnected

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Sometimes the Earth moves this way, sometimes that way. What’s the connection? 

Sometimes it seems impossible that we are sitting watching the fire.

The air is soft, full and still. The fire was started a long time ago and we sit and just gaze into its presence. We slowly allow the fire to melt away our awareness… no sitting, no looking, no air…no me or you, just fire. .. we sit transfixed and only fire remains…. Then, slowly, the fire fades away and out of this emptiness… a mouse appears, and then a wolf…

Running on all fours, our feet know the destination and our minds are clear.

The pounding of the earth with our paws rings throughout our ears and soon we fall into just this sound… turning into our heartbeats….. pounding and pounding…. fierce and true… then we start to see our feet are moving, around and around they take us around the fire … and then our eyes look up and meet. … and we realize what we always knew.

Paradox

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The sky endlessly encircles the Earth yet the sea always rises to stop it. Or is it the other way around? Or neither. What do our definitions and models provide to us? What is their function?

All paradoxes exist because of a fundamental flaw in our logic. Our logic is based on separation, that all things are separate from all other things. In fact, the thought that there are ‘things’ automatically creates this separation. Once you define something, that definition is intended to separate it in order to explain it.

Funny thing is, is that is a paradox in itself..

…you can’t truly explain anything if you separate it out….

So what do we do?

Water freezes at 32 degrees. In that instant….water’s spirit cries so hard from its cold heart it turns to ice. Or its molecules slow down to a point where it is more energetically favorable to arrange in a crystalline structure. Or… something else…

So what do we do?

Knowledge is a double-edged sword. Be careful how you wield it.

Lots of conceptions about concepts

IMG_2833One event transforming into another event is time. Time is the final distinguisher. We can categorize, differentiate or separate events in many, many different ways.  However, without the conception of time, no distinctions can be made.

Time is not absolute. Time is an idea of our minds. It is a very powerfully useful conception. It lies as the foundation of all our categorizations. Hey, this is good news when we know to eat an apple and not a rock! Distinctions, categories, whatever you may call them are inherently neutral. They can be, and are, life-saving tools. They also can be the very things that ensure our suffering.

Again, without our ultimate distinction, time, all others fall away… What I mean is that they fall away from us being attached to some and repulsed by others. Therein lies freedom… freedom from suffering.  When time falls away from our conceptual mind, the stranglehold of living in the utterly realistic illusion of our conceptualized reality is released.

Our conceptualized reality is neutral. Our brains are very clever and we get 100% convinced that this reality we believe is not illusionary. All models, all conceptions, are just that… they are never the real thing. Our brains create truly remarkable conceptualizations that trying to believe they are nothing more than this is almost impossible.

When we let go of our ultimate model-maker, the mother of conception…time… the house of cards that formed our view of reality is clearly seen.

Is any of this useful? lol. Lots of thinking here, lots of concepts, lol.

When we seek the origin of our thoughts, we realize that our thoughts are mostly born from concepts we developed since we were born. Is not our first concept that of time? How could it be otherwise? What were we before time?

 

Knots

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When you seek the origin of your thoughts, the origin of your being, you find that many knots that bound you become untied. Sometimes this is liberating as it yields freedoms we have long forgotten the taste of; however, sometimes this untying is terrifying as the rope that spines throughout our life becomes smooth with less and less to hold onto.

We all live in a gilded cage of one sort or another. We feel protected and safe within our cage, yet we live in our own self oppression.

The origin of ourselves…. Can it be inside the cage? We know the answer, so we may find we open the cage door and start exploring what is outside. We seek our origin, following and untying the knots on the rope as we go… We untie knot after knot and that lets us fly further and deeper….It seems like the knots will never end.

What is at the end of our rope? Is there an end? Can the knots ever end?

As long as our rope exists, one knot will always remain…. For at the very end of the rope, devoid of all knots, we discover it is tied to our minds.

What happens if we dare untie this last knot?

An Ox grazes on the lust spring grass as birds eat mites on her back.

We fall forever yet never before now have we felt the ground.