Moments Of Timeless Peace Surpass Lifetimes Of Time-Bound Thought
It’s a cloudy but bright Sunday morning. An inconsiderate neighbor on the street in back is playing country music in his house so loud you can hear the lyrics. The infernal noise stops, and a pervasive quietness is instantly palpable.
It’s so quiet that the few yellow and brown leaves remaining on the fruit tree are audible as they drop to the ground one by one.
A plump, alert blue jay flies down among the leaves a few feet away. It turns them over in a quick motion looking for bugs until a gray squirrel scampers off the roof onto the tree.
The familiar backyard suddenly becomes unfamiliar as the mental known recedes and the wholeness of the earth intensifies in one’s awareness. There’s a strong insight that the earth is not an anomaly in the universe, but the highest expression of the universe. Life is a manifestation of the universe, not some random occurrence in a cold and lifeless cosmos.
So too is consciousness. Not the emergent consciousness that evolved in man, which is based on the separations, symbols and memories of thought, but the potential for cosmic consciousness in the human being, which is the consciousness that imbues the earth and universe.
Again a great mystery and paradox strikes me. The evolution of ‘higher thought’ was the neural threshold in the brain for cosmic consciousness, but thought is the greatest impediment to the realization of true consciousness in the human being.
Why is that so? Is the planetary crisis wrought by thought consciousness an aberration on earth, or do technological creatures always tend to fragment and decimate their planets?
Perhaps we’ll find out in this century, though I have a feeling we won’t know astrobiologically until enough human beings awaken true intelligence. And no one can know where and when that threshold is.
In other words, humankind will communicate with intelligent species in the universe when we join the ranks of intelligent species, which has nothing to do with the extent of scientific knowledge and sophistication of technology, and everything to do with harmony with the life on one’s planet and thereby with the universe.
But man will only know his own darkness if he continues to destroy the earth and humanity’s spiritual capacity. And at present we’re idolizing technology, lately in the form of Artificial Intelligence (actually artificial thought), which can never actually be intelligent in the deeper sense of the word.
This is why the actionless action of meditation, by whatever name, is crucially important, since meditation is in essence the passive awareness of the total movement of thought and its complete quieting, negating and emptying in the unwilled attention that passive watchfulness gathers in the brain.
Meditation has no method, and has nothing to do with the “mindfulness movement.”
An all-encompassing sense of peace deepens within. It’s neither a personal or idiosyncratic phenomenon, nor a feeling induced by the palpable quietness before the storm coming in off the Pacific. It’s within and without, without the division and duality between ‘inner’ and ‘outer.’
There is peace beyond thought. Indeed, there is only peace beyond thought. That’s the true meaning of “the peace that surpasses all understanding.”
Such “understanding” cannot be placed in any belief system, biblical or otherwise. And it can be understood when there is the silence of insight, just not in terms of the words, analyses and conceptualizations of thought.
Thought cannot solve the problems that thought has created. These problems range from fragmenting the earth to “tipping points” of extinction and collapse under industrialization and fossil fuel extraction and atmospheric disgorgement, to the despair, anxiety and depression that everyone on earth is prone to now.
The peace that comes with the complete quieting of thought during unguided meditation has become essential to inwardly surviving and thriving as human beings. Observe without the observer until there’s not a scintilla of psychological time as ‘later.’
lefevremartin77 at gmail