Several friends have told
me some interesting things lately... There was Dan, a few days back,
asking me to ponder laughter. It isn't just a resolution of "cognitive
dissonance", and the release of tension that comes with that, because
that doesn't explain the banana skin splat. Is the release in slapstick
"thank God it isn't me"! I don't quite see... but, we can
sense that release is... Hmm?
So then Dan asked, as a follow up to the release
of laughter, asked me to ponder "enlightenment" : did he point
towards zen koans tacitly positing that, again, there is indeed "release"
in the light bulb "a ha!"
I don't know if I can explain why I found this so "brill".
I guess it gave me a little ping of release....
Then I found what Brittany
shared with me yesterday delightful: but... I feel I have to fill in
some background here: so, with apologies, a list...
Spinoza's substance: my intellectual friend,
Terry, tells me that Spinoza said that everything can be reduced to
a single essence, a substance, the God stuff.
Quiet abiding: Philips said that half
a century ago, when he was first out east chasing enlightenment, meditating
with gurus, he had a transportation into bliss, into ecstasy, and it
lasted a full eighteen months, the high, it did indeed abided, but it
was exhausting. Ecstasy is an agitation. And Philip says that the Buddha
says, beyond bliss, beyond ecstasy, is quiet abiding. Tranquility.
Ananda: my friend Tee gave me a book on
meditation by her guru, swamiji Nityananda. On page two Nityananda explained
that the literal meaning of ananda is that which cannot be lost or divided
/diminished. (And that makes sense: the a is Sanskrit words denotes
a negative sense of the whatever.) Ananda is quiet abiding, the God
"Kundalini awakening", which
In my circle might rather termed a "Spiritual Emergency",
is a rather sudden, often startling, overwhelming "waking",
associated with the subjective experience of "energy" flowing
(usually) upwards. (Stanislov Grof edited an interesting collection
of essays on the matter with the title: "Spiritual Emergence")
And I want to mention Wilhelm Reich's
model of psychosis - Reich say that when the body, and the self, can't
contain the energies flowing through them, they overflow chaotically.
Finally let us note that there is an overlapof
the several phenomena, psychosis, kundalini awakening/Spiritual Emergency
, drug induced psychosis, and the mystic's spiritual experience (awakening,
ecstasy) they are overlapping sets.
Brittany is a young woman,
mid twenties: a musician. We just recently met at a writers circle.
Yesterday we had our first tete a tete.
Brittany listened well while I spoke and
spieled, and then told me, when I was ready to listen, some of her story.
Four years ago, following on a moderately severe concussion (bicycle
and an opening car door) that led to a troubled time of headaches and
pharmaceuticals (pain killers and mild tranqs/diazepam's) for some months
: and then... what sparked it? She decided to cozy up to her existential
and her personal; pain... and then she said, and for her this was the
key, she didn't try to transcend them. She cozied up, and got "intimate"
with her woes, and hung in there : no rejection, judgement, and she
woke! And Brittany said that the energy, the light, just fountained
out of the top of her head, like water from a hose,
pressure rising to the sky: and here Britany gestured with her hands
above her head, a fountaining to the heavens. Then she said, "But
if you try to stop it, like putting your finger in the hole to block
it," and she gestured again, finger to skull, "it goes thbbft"
(something like that, like Bill the cat) ... *
(Now note! this guidance, this story,
isn't for everyone. You have to ask yourself, always, about anything,
"is this safe?" And, we live and die by our intuition.)
Finally, I saw Terry today,
and I checked on my representation of Spinoza. Terry pointed out, added,
that for Spinoza, "substance" was indivisible, like ananda,
an indivisible God stuff.
Then we were talking about "oneness"
and multiplexity. My realisation that in a literal sense there is no
actual "duality". There is, in some sense, oneness, and there
is multiplicity. And Terry said that the mind is a singularity. Mind
experiences the multiplexity: but mind itself is a oneness! Interesting.
I will have to ponder this, but - curse of the intellectual - "oneness"
surely is ineffable, imponderable and, quite possibly, just an abstraction.
Mind, and God, as "singularities". Hmm?