God, Gods and Goddesses Part 3

“In god consciousness, the world around you is a world of Beings. Beings that are all behaving in ways that are absolutely logical. Beings that are behaving in ways that are explanatory.”

Thom Knoles

Episode Summary

In this episode Thom puts a fresh perspective on the phrase “Oh my God” and shows us how there is more to this term than meets the eye. 

Having given us a solid foundation to the subject in Part 1 and Part 2, Thom uses this episode to set us up for our own personal experience.

He explains that while there are many commonalities of archetypes across cultures, each of us shapes our experiences of “god” based on our own personal model of the world.This even includes those that have the view that there is no such thing as a god or a deity.

Importantly, he explains that our own experience will be based on our own observations rather than requiring faith of any sort. It’s a paradigm that will provide relief for those who have struggled to make doctrines fit their experience. 

In the final analysis, you get to choose your own adventure, and there’s no hurry to come to a conclusion one way or another.

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Episode Highlights


Experiencing the Celestial Layer



Sleeping, Dreaming, Waking



Turiya – The Fourth State



Colorfast Consciousness



Enlightenment Begins



Archetypes of Experience Emerge



God Consciousness



See No Evil



Observation Based vs Faith Based



A World of Beings



Normalizing Capability



Grades of Experience



Cultural Biases Constructing Deities



Lakshmi and Saraswati



Surya AKA Apollo



Universal and Undeniable Archetypes



Same Same But Different



Unity Consciousness



Sally From Kansas City



Ishwara – Supreme Being



Ishta Devata



Your Call to Action



That Dusty Old Podcast



The Pinnacle of Human Development



Choose Your Own Adventure



What Kind of Universe Do You Want?


Jai Guru Deva


God, gods and goddesses part 3

Experiencing the Celestial Layer

This is Part Three of God, Gods and Goddesses, my podcast on what is known in the Vedic language as the celestial layer. So let’s really go back a little bit and summarize a few salient points.

[00:01:03] It’s important to emphasize that ultimately the Vedic worldview is, that there’s only one thing and you’re it. There’s only one indivisible, whole consciousness field, and since there’s only one indivisible, whole consciousness field and though it undulates in waves, that means it appears as many, these appearances are there to structure the capacity to experience unity within diversity.

[00:01:33] And ultimately the Vedic worldview does not present itself as a religion in the sense that you’re going to be saved by something or, if you believe something, then you’ll have an experience.

[00:01:47] Really, the Vedic worldview is all about explaining experiences that people who meditate have. In other words, as in every science, when observations are being made, as a result of an observation being made, a good theory has to be constructed to explain the observation, and the theories that win are the theories that explain, with the greatest consistency, all observations.

Sleeping, Dreaming, Waking

[00:02:15] And so what I’m putting forward to you now is a set of ideas about what kinds of experiences might be had as a more advanced meditator. And once again, we’ll review that there are seven consciousness states.

[00:02:32] The sleep state, the dream state, the waking state, these are the three relative states that rotate around. Waking state is the cause of the tiredness that determines how much we sleep. Sleep is the state that determines dreaming. Dream state releases the stresses of the waking state and these three rotate around each other.

[00:02:56] They’re relative in that sense, they’re related to each other. They’re also relative because they’re ever-changing.

Turiya – The Fourth State

[00:03:02] Then there’s the fourth state, in Sanskrit called Turiya. The state of consciousness that is easily had, although in some literature, which I would challenge, it’s referred to as a difficult state to attain. Not difficult at all.

[00:03:18]If you can run, then you can walk fast. If you can walk fast, then you can walk slowly. If you can walk slowly, contained within the ability to walk slowly is the ability to stand still. Standing still should be, and is, easier and more effortless than walking or running.

[00:03:40] The mind is capable of running, thinking a lot, that same mind is capable of thinking less. If the mind is capable of thinking less, then that same mind is capable of allowing thought to cease. We have only to learn the technique of effortlessness, Vedic Meditation, whereby we can step beyond thought and experienced consciousness standing alone.

[00:04:05] Consciousness standing alone is an Absolute state. It’s the state which has many names that attempt to describe it. Being is one of my favorites. Pure consciousness, pure in the sense of, it’s consciousness alone, unadulterated by thinking. A pure awareness, unbounded awareness, meaning there’s no specific boundaries inside of it.

[00:04:29] In that state consciousness, by virtue of being conscious, is experiencing consciousness. Consciousness is experiencing itself. It is the “knower,” it is consciousness, the “knowing” by virtue of being conscious, and it is the “known,” it is the subject that is being, or the object that’s being experienced by the knower.

[00:04:54] So this is the fourth state, Turiya. Turiya is a consciousness state which stands alone and in that consciousness state of Turiya, the physiology of the experiencer of the fourth state is in its own least-excited state.

Colorfast Consciousness

[00:05:10] Regular exposure to the fourth state through regular systematic application of Vedic Meditation, we recommend 20 minutes twice each day, one begins to dip into that state, rather in the way that you might dip a cloth into a dye, like saffron-colored dye or something in the old fashioned dying techniques of India, and then you take out the cloth and you bleach it in the sunshine.

[00:05:36] That is to say you put it in the sunshine and intentionally allow it to fade, then put it back in the dye again, and back to the sun again, back to the dye again, back to the sun again. Through this two-fold process of infusing color into the cloth and intentionally challenging the color by making it  fade, you’re in fact, making the cloth colorfast.

[00:06:01] Take our consciousness in the analogy… we dip it into that unbounded awareness during meditation, we come out and that unbounded awareness is challenged by all the boundaries, experiences, sounds, noises, speech, action, thinking, all the rest of it, and that backdrop of Being naturally fades or recedes. But as you dip in again, the second time of the day, then you strengthen and refresh that experience and then come back out into activity, it’s lost again. It’s gained again the next morning, and then you fade it through the day. Then you dip in again in the evening, and then it fades through the night.

Enlightenment Begins

[00:06:43] Like that, eventually what happens is the consciousness develops something akin to, in our analogy, colorfastness. That is to say the fourth state becomes a perpetual reality. And that state, we call it Cosmic Consciousness. It’s a fifth state. The fifth state is where the fourth state has infused itself into waking, dreaming and sleeping.

[00:07:08] That is to say it’s there all the time. And so it’s an all-inclusive state, Cosmic in that sense of being all-inclusive in time, and Cosmic in the sense of being all inclusive in all consciousness states.

[00:07:19] It includes every consciousness state that existed before it. It has waking in it, dreaming in it, sleeping in it. The fourth state is infused throughout, it permeates it.

[00:07:29] The fifth state of consciousness, Cosmic Consciousness, is the first condition which, in the Vedic worldview, we would call “enlightenment.”


[00:07:38] But there are three states of enlightenment. As we live life in Cosmic Consciousness, then the process of engaging in daily activity and the processes of eating food, which we have to do for the nourishment of the body, allows the body to produce the finest product of digestion. That finest product of digestion allows another thing, which we refer to in the Vedic concept as soma, S-O-M-A.

[00:08:08] Soma is a word that has moved into Greek and into Latin, somatic diseases, psychosomasis, and so on and so forth. The word soma, ironically, in the west has come to mean the body, but in Sanskrit, Soma is a celestial biochemical.

[00:08:28] Soma is a biochemical that is produced by the digestion being unimpeded by stress. In Cosmic Consciousness one has eliminated all the accumulated stresses through regular meditation practice. No more residual stress exists so the body is able to operate at its peak performance.

[00:08:51] Soma allows perceptual capacity to refine and refine, and one begins to experience forms and phenomena that previously were not experienced. When this happens, first of all in meditation, one starts to learn that as the mind becomes very close to transcendence on the way into the fourth state, on the way into the least-excited state, there’s a layer, a layer of that place where the silence is manifesting, the unmanifest is manifesting into relativity.

Archetypes of Experience Emerge

[00:09:29] The Absolute is becoming relative, where the first impulses of creative intelligence are able to be perceived. And those very first impulses of creative intelligence start to be experienced in eyes-closed state, in meditation first, as having a kind of a glowing characteristic. A glowing characteristic and certain sound characteristics that are absolutely delicious to our apparatus of internal hearing and our apparatus of internal sight.

[00:10:00] And there are classic archetypes of experience that begin to emerge. And these archetypes of experience, these forms and phenomena, that begin to emerge, come with such regular consistency that our brain is required, as it’s required with everything we’ve experienced since birth, to build a model explaining it.

[00:10:25] And what it turns out to be is “it” gets personified, and it turns into “they.” They means these constructs of the laws of Nature being experienced, first in the eyes-closed state, start to develop certain, very powerful and consistent and regular systematically-presented realities. Personalities begin to form.

[00:10:52] And this is just the human brain’s natural inbuilt training. A human brain is designed to conceive and construct forms and relationship with form as a result of its natural built-in mechanisms. This is leftover from the very first days out of the womb, when it takes several months for a neonate, a newborn baby, to begin to recognize all of the characteristics of mother’s face or the faces of others. This is a model-building phenomenon going on in the brain that we’ve touched on previously.

God Consciousness

[00:11:32] Beyond this, this is the sixth state, and we refer to it as “god consciousness.” Here god is spelled with a lowercase g in the first instance, we’ll come to the uppercase G in just a moment. That is to say that there are ways in which the laws of Nature have a play and display that is very consistent with certain themes and phenomena that the experiencer, the meditator, is experiencing in daily life.

[00:12:03] And all of these themes of the ways in which the laws of Nature connect the cascades of causes and effects. That there are causes of certain cascades of laws of Nature going into play, cascades of evolution, cascades of progressive change.

[00:12:23] Cascades that can be determined and experienced as those things which are building innovation, creation, creativity, improvisation, and connection, all come under the heading of “creation operator” forms and phenomena and they are perceived as personalities that are engaging in this evolutionary process.

[00:12:53] There are some laws of Nature that are involved in maintenance. And these personified laws of Nature in god consciousness are experienced under the heading of maintenance operator forms and phenomena. Personalities, worlds of them.

[00:13:10] And next are those removers of irrelevancy. Those things that, those forms, those phenomena, that bring about the dis-integration of anything, which may once have had relevance but no longer has relevance to evolution. And these forms and phenomena would be under the broad heading of destruction operators, though we have to be very clear that destruction does not mean just wanton destruction.

See No Evil

[00:13:39] This is no equivalent of the worldviews of Western religions that have an idea such “evil.” In the Vedic worldview, evil is not really part of our ideation. The way we look at things is that there are three particular ways in which evolution occurs that are necessary for all evolution to occur.

[00:14:00] There has to be improvisation, creation. There has to be inventiveness. There has to be the making of something new or the finding of new connections between existing things. There has to be maintenance of those things which continue to contribute to the processes of evolution. So maintenance operator, forms and functions. Personalities in the case of god consciousness. There has to be the destruction of that which no longer is relevant to evolution.

[00:14:29] In the Vedic language of Sanskrit, we refer to the creation operator forms and phenomena as Brahma, B-R-A-H-M-A. Brahma, not to be confused with a similar sounding word, Brahman. Brahman, a completely different word with a completely different meaning, means totality. Brahma, B-R-A-H-M-A is a reference to a personified creation operator form.

[00:14:58] The maintenance operator form comes under the heading of Vishnu, V-I-S-H-N-U, Vishnu. Vishnu maintenance operation function. In the case of god consciousness, forms and phenomena are experienced that are connected with that type of archetypal personification that occurs in the human mind, and we call that the Vishnu experiences.

[00:15:26] And then destruction. Destruction meaning, and again, we have to emphasize this, dis-integration of whatever has ceased to be relevant to evolution. [It] may once have been highly relevant; umbilical cord, the umbilicus, at the time of birth and before birth, connects mother to baby, and then shortly after birth must be removed. Highly honored thing, no longer relevant. If it’s not removed at a particular point, that is the ideal point, then it can be highly dangerous, both to mother and baby.

[00:16:01] And so destruction operator would include things like the removal of, and the respectful removal of, an umbilicus which has served its purpose. And so something that is being disintegrated or destroyed by destruction operator is not something that is evil, it’s something which is no longer serving the process of evolution.

[00:16:26] And what would that include? It would include things like relationships, styles of relating, a style of relating within an existing relationship, may have to come to an end, or forms, functions, and phenomena.

[00:16:41] There’s a shelf life for every form, for every phenomenon that exists, and the overall name for all of these is Shiva. Shiva is the name of the personified destruction operator.

Observation Based vs Faith Based

[00:17:00] Under these three main elements, Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva, exist myriad individual deities that are described in the Vedic literature.

[00:17:14] The Vedic literature has, at its baseline, when properly taught, is not a belief system. It’s an explanatory system. It explains what it is that people already are experiencing, rather than, “If you believe in this, then a thing will happen.” This is the great difference between the Vedic worldview and the worldviews that have spawned the Western religions, and even some religions in the east.

[00:17:42] Rather than being faith based these are observation based. These descriptions of these Beings has relevance only for those who might be having these experiences. They have no value whatsoever for anyone who’s not capable of having these experiences yet. These are experiences that emerge from a continued practice and a continuous refinement of the apparatus and acuity of perceptual capability.

[00:18:17] Again, our brain cannot form models for anything other than what it has been consistently exposed to. If we’re consistently systematically exposed to an experience, again and again, our brain will form a model for that. Something, which we only experience occasionally or sporadically, our brain doesn’t have an opportunity to form a model for it and so our brain assumes that it’s some kind of an anomaly.

A World of Beings

[00:18:44] Or it will explain it using some kind of proximate explanation, but in god consciousness, the world around you is a world of, and again this is the sixth state of consciousness, it’s a world of Beings. Beings that are all behaving in ways that are absolutely logical. Beings that are behaving in ways that are explanatory.

[00:19:07] Walk around when you’re in god consciousness saying to somebody in the shop, “Oh look, Shiva’s at work here because the cottage cheese has gone off,” or “I am making sure that I’m going to get some Vishnu going here.”

[00:19:20]This is not an ego-driven or an individual personality-driven phenomenon. This is simply an explanation that may suffice for people who would like an explanation of what it is they’re experiencing. What are these personified phenomena that are occurring everywhere one looks? And so when you look outside at trees and water and sky and so on, the world suddenly becomes an animate place.

[00:19:47] In god consciousness, the world is no longer an inanimate world. It is a completely sentient  animate world. In god consciousness the world is experienced as interactions between realms of Beings that are experienceable consistently and regularly. And oddly enough, even though it may sound absolutely wondrous, you can completely normalize this state just as you normalize everything.

Normalizing Capability

[00:20:17] Right now I’m speaking to you and if I went back far enough, 70 years ago, I could barely speak. What is the speech of a baby? “Oooh. Ahhh. Blahh. Blurghh,” things like that. And when a child ends up with 20-word vocabulary, 100-word vocabulary, 400-word vocabulary and so on, and then they begin able to use grammar logically to string together these various soundbites that are descriptive of the world around them, and they can make fine distinctions between colors, fine distinctions between ideas, fine distinctions between feelings, fine distinctions between concepts, forms, phenomena, ideas, whatnot… and we end up with a vocabulary of many, many thousands of words which can be linked together grammatically in such a way as to make an idea, which one is having in one’s own consciousness in one’s own head, put itself into, awaken itself in another person’s head by virtue of vibrating, your vocal chords.

[00:21:23] And we take it for granted that we can speak like this. Here I am talking away and I don’t even know how I’m doing it. I’m not sitting around going through an internal lexicon, that’s a dictionary by the way, of words from the Oxford English dictionary, and selecting words carefully as I speak. The speech is just rolling out of my mouth. I have some kind of faint, subtle idea, and it just rolls out of my mouth. Do I consider it to be extraordinary? No, one just finds it to be absolutely ordinary. This is the ordinary, now normalized capability.

[00:22:01] If a child of the age of one was suddenly able to speak like this, we would consider the child to be a freak. And the child probably would consider itself to be a freak. But though we develop the talent over a period of decades to communicate with a certain degree of eloquence in articulation we don’t consider it to be miraculous that we’re eating a sandwich and speaking eloquently. We’ve normalized it.

Grades of Experience

[00:22:29] God consciousness, just like that is a state that one absolutely normalizes. It doesn’t seem to one at all odd as it grows and grows in graded ways.

[00:22:42] It takes about 10 years for cosmic consciousness to evolve fully into full-blown god consciousness. And over that period of 10 years, the grades of experience grow and grow and grow and the whole thing just becomes a sort of a “nothing unusual” sort of experience. One isn’t sitting, talking to somebody saying, “I just saw Vishnu go dancing across the floor,” or something like that.

[00:23:07]You might see something like that or experience it, but you also learn very rapidly, just as you do in every other realm of human knowledge and acquisition of knowledge and expertise and wisdom, that wise do not bewilder ignorant. You’re not going to bother somebody with concepts that you know for a fact they’re not yet experiencing.

[00:23:28] And so you could offer clarification to anybody who shows you that they’ve also developed a talent like that, but would you go around proselytizing everybody about, “This is a Brahma thing, this is a Vishnu thing, this is a Shiva thing.”

[00:23:43]There’s no proselytizing in the Vedic worldview. One’s not trying to convince anyone of anything. In the Vedic worldview, all we’re doing really is coming up with theoretical constructs to explain existing experiences.

Cultural Biases Constructing Deities

[00:23:57] Let’s look at this a little bit more broadly culturally. For those of you who haven’t yet treated yourselves to the writings of my old friend, Joseph Campbell – I say my old friend, not because I hung around at his house or ever had a sandwich with him or anything, but Joseph Campbell, on several occasions, crossed paths with my master Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. And Joseph who taught at the wonderful school, Sarah Lawrence, on the east coast, was a professor of mythology. And Joseph wrote many books, The Hero With a Thousand Faces. He put together, with National Public Radio I believe, or perhaps the American PBS, Public Broadcasting System, an educational set of videos called The Power of Myth.

[00:24:46] I highly recommend that you take in that knowledge if you’re interested in better understanding cultural differences and the ways in which God, gods and goddesses might be experienced by people who’ve had different models built in their brain due to the different kind of climatic conditions, geographic conditions, elevational changes and so on to which their cultures were exposed early in those cultures’ lifetimes.

[00:25:17] We do have cultural biases that will cause our brain to construct deities that are experienced, and I’m calling them deities because they are experienced like that by the person who’s experiencing them in different ways.

Lakshmi and Saraswati

[00:25:33] So for example, in the Vedic worldview, there is a goddess, this is a feminine impulse of creative intelligence, whose name given to her is Lakshmi. Lakshmi is the goddess of abundance and prosperity of every kind, and she is depicted wearing beautiful Indian clothes covered in lovely, very tasteful jewelry, but with gold coins and things coming out of, issuing forth from her hands.

[00:26:06] Now, is this a literal thing that there’s a goddess floating around out there named Lakshmi and if you can manage to get her into your living room, you’re going to get some gold coins that you can take down to the bank? No, this is a way of explaining and giving some kind of detail to, and also giving some support to, experiences that people have when they notice that abundance is on the horizon. They begin to experience something like this.

[00:26:38] There are equivalents of Lakshmi in every culture, and so then Lakshmi is not a Being that you have to believe in and pray to, and then you’re going to get some money. That kind of crude approach to the subject is not actually part of the Vedic worldview at all. This is something that has been perhaps imported, even into India, by foreign cultures that think that way about God or gods. 

[00:27:06] Saraswati, Saraswati is the feminine deity, the name given to the feminine deity, that is the goddess of wisdom, of culture, of music, of learning. And so Saraswati and likewise, there are many, many, many others. We could spend a whole day going into all of these and perhaps one day, we’ll have a specific course in which we look at these.

Surya AKA Apollo

[00:27:37] We can look at them in reference to every culture. So for example, in the Vedic worldview, that phenomenon, that sphere known as the Sun, in god consciousness would be experienced as a Being. You look at the sun and in god consciousness, you’re experiencing a Being.

[00:27:56] If you then reference the Vedic worldview about, “What is this experience I’m having?” then you’ll very quickly come across a deity, an impulsive creative intelligence, a Deva, the word D-E-V-A, Deva is the word from which we get our English word divine and the word deity, Deva named Surya, S-U-R-Y-A. Surya is a masculine deity that has lots of feminine qualities surrounding it in the form of other forms and phenomenology, and one looks at that and sees that, and if you read the explanation of it, that’s Surya, then you have a name for what it is you’re experiencing.

[00:28:39] But perhaps you are more enchanted by the cultural origins that you might’ve had from Greece. And so you might well look at what the Greeks referred to as Apollo, A-P-O-L-L-O, which is the equivalent of Surya, in the Sanskritic name.

[00:29:02] And so the Vedic worldview is not attempting in any way to assert on experiencers only Indian and Sanskritic names and iconography of these various kinds of forms and phenomena that one experiences in god consciousness. It’s completely open to them being experienced and understood in any language and any way that has appeared in cultures all over the world.

Universal and Undeniable Archetypes

[00:29:30] If you’re interested in human-consciousness archetypes, and you’d like to read more about this subject from a more scientific perspective, I strongly recommend that you read the writings of Carl Gustav Jung.

[00:29:46] Jung was at one point a protege of Sigmund Freud, a famous psychiatrist from Europe who was probably the father of modern psychology and psychiatry and his protege, and sometimes collaborator, Carl Gustav Jung, J-U-N-G is how Jung is spelled, wrote as he developed his own expertise, and I would say even went beyond his own teacher, Freud, in his explanation of human experience.

[00:30:21] Jung wrote many books that referenced the archetypes of the human condition and looking from one culture to the next, connecting the dots and saying these are archetypes that bubble up in human consciousness, irrespective of culture. That irrespective of culture, there are certain archetypes that are undeniable.

[00:30:44] So we have great respect and bow to these kinds of interpretations of experience that are not strictly the ones that came out of India. The Vedic worldview is not Indian knowledge. It  happens to explain a lot of Indian knowledge, but the Vedic worldview actually would like to be inclusive of all cultures.

Same Same, But Different

[00:31:10] I want to take a moment just to relieve two sets of people. Those sets of people who like, for example, Jews and atheists, not that I’m putting them both in the same boat, not at all, but Jews are very cautious and careful not to have any kind of iconography, or what they would refer to as graven images, because there’s only one God in their view.

[00:31:38] And yet in Judaism, there is recognition of the Cherubim and Seraphim. These are the angels. These are the various creatures that are the assistants of God. They’re never deified or put on the level of God, but they have names and they have very specific functions. They serve very specific purposes.

[00:32:03] The religions that came out of Judaism, the Christian religions and the hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of brands and branches of Christianity that emerged from messianic Judaism, where the Jews who believed that Jesus of Nazareth was in fact, the Messiah and that this branched into hundreds and hundreds of religions, also have a vast variety of angels of deific creatures, all of whom perform various functions. This is no different to the way in which the Vedic worldview looks at all of this.

Unity Consciousness

[00:32:42] There’s actually one indivisible, whole consciousness field. This is the next consciousness state. After god consciousness comes unity consciousness.

[00:32:52] In unity consciousness, a new level of perceptual capability dawns. The senses of perception have become so acute that one actually can perceive in any form, in any phenomenon that which is transcendent, that which is the source of all things. And that happens to be the same as one’s own consciousness.

[00:33:19] The knower identifies as Being, The Absolute field of Being. The known, that is to say the celestial world and right up to the level of things that are not deep inside the celestial layer, gross physical objects, all are experienced as the same one field of Being.

[00:33:43] Being unmanifest can be experienced in all forms. And one identifies oneself as Being unmanifest. The unmanifest field of Being deep inside oneself is experiencing itself in all objects. In that state of consciousness, all things, all forms, all phenomena, including celestial and so on, end up being extensions of the Self.

Sally From Kansas City

[00:34:10] “This is all an extension of me.” The ultimate truth in the Veda, not an extension of you, like lower case y, you, or an extension of me, lower case m, Sally from Kansas or whatever I happen to be. Everything is an extension of Sally from Kansas City. No.

[00:34:30] Sally from Kansas City meditates for years and arrives in Unity Consciousness and discovers that her baseline is the universal Cosmic Unified Field itself, and when she looks around through her senses of perception, she discovers that all forms and all phenomena are also extensions of that same one indivisible, whole consciousness field.

[00:34:52] This is unity consciousness. Unity Consciousness states, unambiguously, there are no differences, all gods are extensions of oneself.

Ishwara – Supreme Being

[00:35:04] And now we have to get to, what comes just before unity consciousness? As lower case g, god consciousness evolves to unity consciousness, one begins to find that one favors spontaneously, based on one’s own natural predilections, one favors a particular Being as Supreme to oneself.

[00:35:28] That Being that is to me, the most adorable. That Being which is to me, the one to whom I relate the most as Supreme amongst all of the Pantheon of Beings. And that would be called, in Sanskrit, the word Ishwara.

[00:35:47] Ishwara is Supreme Being, that Being that’s Supreme. All the others are like, in the Judeo-Christian worldviews, angels or devas are, they’re subordinate to whatever it is you experience as Supreme to you.

Ishta Devata

[00:36:03] The Vedic worldview has one more twist in this though. Supremacy of a Being is not something that the Being itself asserts on the knower. Supremacy of a Being is that which is spontaneously the most desirable to whoever the experiencer of it is.

[00:36:24] So somebody might find that for them a God, like Shiva, whether we call it Shiva or not or we call it something else because we’re from a different culture, is Supreme to them. The disintegrator of irrelevancy is also the one that is the renewer, which brings about, you’re completely sanguine because nothing that is terribly negative can last for very long.

[00:36:51] And so perhaps you find yourself someone who adores Shiva. Likewise, you might find yourself, someone who is adoring Vishnu. Vishnu, the maintenance operator that maintains all that continues to be relevant, and, “All I have to do is continue to be relevant and Vishnu is my God,” and so on and so forth.

[00:37:14] There is an opportunity for every individual to find some aspect of the one indivisible, whole, consciousness field as, my Lord, my love, my God. That is a personal experience. Personal Ishwara. Ishwara Supreme Being personified for an individual in Sanskrit is called Ishta Devata, I-S-H-T-A, Ishta,  Devata. Ishta Devata means, my Lord, my love, my God. That, which is Supreme to me.

Your Call to Action

[00:37:51] All right, so knowledge is for action. What action should come from all of this? For thinking of action, what do you do about all this? Well, if it doesn’t relate to your own experience, just put it in your back pocket and forget about it for now. Take up the practice of meditation for whatever reason you want to meditate.

[00:38:15] If you meditate twice a day to get rid of your stress and to have a better immune system and all of those good things, fantastic! You don’t need anything more than that. Just do it twice every day and all of this highfalutin stuff that you hear on Tom Knoles’s podcast, you can forget about for the moment.

That Dusty Old Podcast

[00:38:33] And then as you grow into a consciousness state that you find that that place that you once could go to only during meditation, now has become a consistent reality then you go, “Hmm, I wonder what this is. Let’s listen to that podcast. You know, maybe this is Cosmic Consciousness. I seem to be in this state all the time, not just during meditation. I can experience my backdrop of least-excited state and all the foreground of activity and the two states no longer alternate.

[00:39:02] “They’re both experienced simultaneously. Sounds like the fifth state to me. Oh, that’s what he was talking about 10 years ago. And now 10 years later, I’m experiencing that the world that I’m surrounded by is a world that is animate and it relates to me and responds to me and I’m the experiencer of forms and phenomena that are very personified and what is all of that?

[00:39:28] “Oh, let’s listen to that old dusty podcast again, if there’s still a format on which I can listen to it. Ah, yes, god consciousness. Okay. I get it. How did I miss that before? How did I miss it?” Well, you missed it because you weren’t yet in the consciousness state in which that was highly relevant. And then beyond that. “Now I’m experiencing, there’s only one thing and I’m identified with that one thing. I am totality, not little old, me.”

The Pinnacle of Human Development

[00:39:56] Not little Sally from Kansas City, but from that deep inner place from inside you, you find that element everywhere you look, and it transcends individual deities, or God, or anything like that. It is experience of Unity. “I and the universe are one.” This is Unity Consciousness, the seventh state, the pinnacle of human development.

[00:40:21] And so what is the knowledge for action? What is the action? Practice your meditation for whatever reason you do. Enjoy it twice a day. Somebody at Thanksgiving or some other family gathering asks you, “What is that thing you run off and do twice every day? And why do you do it?” Don’t, bewilder them by saying, “Oh, look, I’m doing this because I want to experience Vishnu.”

[00:40:43]Wise do not bewilder ignorant. It’s best if you just find some explanation for it that matches your own experience. “It feels good. I get rid of my stress. I get energy from it and it’s relaxing and it inspires my creativity.” Whatever your answer to the question may be.

[00:41:00] Meditation is fantastic for you from any point of view, from the physiological point of view, from the psychological point of view, from the sociological point of view, and even from the ecological point of view, because you’ll be less of a polluter if you meditate. But we may in our own minds and hearts be meditating because we want these higher consciousness states. That’s a good aspiration.

[00:41:24] But it’s also good to educate yourself very well about them, those higher states, so that you understand that someone’s consciousness state is their reality.

Choose Your Own Adventure

[00:41:35] Another part of this thing of, what do you do with all this knowledge of the seven consciousness states? Construct the world in which you want to live. Do you wish to live in a world that is everything’s a mystery and you don’t really understand what’s going on and there’s no explanation for it? Or do you want to live in a world in which you feel that everything’s unfolding in a way that is logical to you? That’s logical to you?

[00:42:02] And this is the part that I’m offering to atheists. And I like to pronounce it that way, instead of atheists. I like to say atheist because atheist means someone who does not believe that there is such a thing as any intelligence that is bigger than, let’s say, the human. The human might be the most intelligent thing in the entire universe.

[00:42:23] A sad concept if you ask me, but nonetheless, there are people who cling to this and who like to shame other people, even some very famous scientists, like to shame other people who might have any inkling about there being any pervasive intelligence in the universe.

[00:42:41] By the way, the most successful theories of modern science happen to be those that sprung from quantum field theory. Quantum mechanics specifically is the most successful theory of modern science and quantum mechanics states; a) there are no particles, there’s only one indivisible, whole consciousness field, and b) those things that we think are particles can only appear based on an observer expecting them. Go and figure that one out for a minute.

What Kind of Universe Do You Want?

[00:43:11] All right. So the universe in which you live is a product of you, the observer, having an expectation. And so then we’re not foisting on the world, a new theology. We’re simply explaining that there is in fact only one, and this is able to be verified by laboratory science there’s only one indivisible, whole consciousness field.

[00:43:37] You must be it, if there’s only one thing, and now we need to look at the whole universe in a different way because the universe in which you live is your universe. It’s you, what kind of view do you want? What kind of universe do you want? The Vedic worldview offers you seven consciousness states that explain every experience in the human range.

[00:44:10] Jai Guru Deva.

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