Reflection from October 30th, 2013 @ Age 32
I scare everyone. That’s what I do. I show everyone how good I am—how good I am trying to be; how talented I am—all that I have to offer, and they run. They run from me, because I am intense; and, I propose action they are afraid to take—to help. And, they are afraid of me—and, they run.
That’s what I do. All of them. They run from me, because they are frightened of me—and, of what I might do. I ask for help—I show them how hard I work, and how hard I am willing to work; and, to what lengths I will go. I ask them for opportunity—and explain my circumstances; and, show them how hard I’ve worked to overcome—and still not a one, do they want me so. That is what I am. How can I not believe them, when they so clearly show me what I am worth? There is no opportunity for me, here…
PS—this is my rash response to another dismissal. First NAMI Ohio, then Geoffrey Collver at Disability Rights Ohio, then Jack Cameron at Ohio Empowerment Coalition, now Laura Moscow-Sigal at Mental Health America…
No room at the inn is all, I suppose…
Ahh, and here is another from State Representative Stinziano—correcting my use of “Terry,” rather than “Executive Director Russell,” and another…
I know I’m being dramatic, here—and it’s because I’m so goddamned tired. But, honestly—is it any wonder, we’re driven to do such destructive things? Nobody fucking cares in this world. Nobody ‘cept my mom and dad, Andy and Rach—and John and April, and that’s really just about it. I don’t know how, or why, I’m supposed to sustain in this world…
I don’t even want to be here, anymore—let someone else have the air I must breathe.
Our vision of consciousness is aligned with our concept of self:
The more limited the sense of self, the smaller the parameter of experiencing is. Restricted paradigms of reality are global in their efforts—for example, our studies of the “poor” have made it evident that “poorness” isn’t just a financial condition, but that the “poor” are also poor in friendships, verbal skills, education, social amenities, resources, health, and their overall level of happiness. Poorness, then, can be seen as a quality characteristic of a limited self-image, which then results in a scarcity of resources. It isn’t a financial condition, but a level of consciousness. The energy of that level of consciousness calibrates at about 60.
The identification and experience of self could be limited to a description of one’s physical body. Then, of course, we might well ask, how does one know that one has a physical body? Through observation, we note that the presence of the physical body is registered by the senses. The question then follows, what is it that’s aware of the senses? How do we experience what the senses are reporting? Something greater, something more encompassing than the physical body, has to exist in order to experience that which is lesser—and that something is the mind. A person identifies with his body because his mind is experiencing his body. Patients who have lost sizable portions of their bodies report that their sense of self remains undiminished; such a person will say, “I’m still just as much me as I ever was.”
The question then arises: How does one know what’s being experienced by the mind? By observation and introspection, one can witness that thoughts have no capacity to experience themselves, but that something both beyond and more basic than thought experiences the sequence of thoughts, and that that something’s sense of identity is unaltered by the content of the thoughts.
What is it that observes and is aware of all of the subjective and objective phenomena of life? It’s consciousness itself that resonates as both awareness and experiencing, and both are purely subjective. Consciousness itself isn’t determined by content; thoughts flowing through consciousness are like fish swimming in the ocean. The ocean’s existence is independent of the fish; the content of the sea doesn’t define the nature of the water itself. Like a colorless ray, consciousness illuminates the object witnessed—which explains its traditional association throughout world literature with “light.”
Identification solely with the content of consciousness accounts for the experience of self as limited. In contrast, to identify with consciousness itself is to know that one’s actual self is unlimited. When such circumscribed self-identifications have been surmounted so that the sense of self is identified as consciousness itself, we become “enlightened.”
One characteristic of the experience of pure consciousness is a perception of timelessness (or timelessness of perception). Consciousness is experienced as beyond all form and time and seen as equally present everywhere. It’s described as “Is-ness” or “Being-ness” and, in the spiritual literature, “I-am-ness.” Consciousness doesn’t recognize separation, which is a limitation of perception. The enlightened state is a “Oneness” where there is no division into parts. Such division is only apparent from a localized perception; it’s only an accident of a point of view.
Similar descriptions throughout the history of thought are in accord with the studies of William James. In the famous Gifford lectures, James described the experience of consciousness itself as rare, unique, indescribable, and “beyond mind”—a thought-free state of Knowingness that’s complete, all-inclusive, with neither need nor want, and beyond the limitation of experiencing the merely individualized, personal self.
Another attribute of pure consciousness is the cessation of the ordinary flow of thoughts or feelings—a condition of infinite power, compassion, gentleness, and love. In this state, self becomes Self. There’s an accompanying recognition of the very origin of the capacity to experience self as Self, which is the culmination of the process of eliminating limited identifications of self.
The steps necessary to be taken to facilitate awareness of Self as consciousness have been well detailed historically. Numerous techniques and behaviors have been prescribed to facilitate the removal of obstacles to expanded awareness; these can be found in the practice of various spiritual disciplines. The one process common to all such teachings is the progressive elimination of the identification of self as finite.
Enlightenment is said to be relatively rare, not so much because of the difficulty of following the necessary steps to get there, but because it’s a condition of interest to very few, particularly in modern society. If we were to stop 1,000 people in the street and ask them, “What is your greatest ambition in life?” how many would say, “To be enlightened”?
David R. Hawkins, M.D., Ph.D.
POWER VS. FORCE/The Hidden Determinants of Human Behavior.
Chapter 21—The Study of Pure Consciousness: