Love is a Self-Referral Phenomenon
[00:00:45] I Love Your Shoes
[00:00:45] Welcome to the Vedic Worldview. I’m Thom Knoles. Today, we are going to look into one of the most overused words in the English language, love. Love is a word that has deep meaning for us if we take it seriously, but sometimes we don’t.
[00:01:06] “I love your shoes. I love pepperoni on my pizza. Didn’t you love that movie yesterday? Love, love, love. I love you. You love me.”
[00:01:17] Love. Love is a word which almost is as popular as like. Likes on Instagram, likes on Facebook. Like this, like that. Like, in the English language, has become the filler word between about every second to third word in many people’s language.
[00:01:37] “Like this, like that. Like, I’m going here. Like, I’m going there.”
[00:01:41] I’ve often wondered whether love might replace it one day. ” I went to the shop and, love, I went and bought a donut, love. And I had some coffee, love,” instead of like everywhere.
[00:01:54] Let’s Take Love Seriously
[00:01:54] But jokes aside, let’s take love seriously for a moment and find out what actually this word is all about.
[00:02:03] The famous Beatles song, All You Need is Love, and people go, “Yeah, that’s right. That’s it. All you need is love. All the world needs is love. Love is what the world needs.”
[00:02:14] And so why don’t we just switch it on, if that’s what it is, all it needs? And the answer is, we actually don’t know what we’re talking about.
[00:02:22] And I’d like to spend a good amount of time going into depth in our Vedic worldview about what love actually is, how it functions, what its purpose is, and what it is when we experience it. So we’re going to take the indescribable and describe it.
[00:02:40] Existence is Made Relevant by Consciousness
[00:02:40] Let’s start with the Vedic concept of how existence becomes conscious and why.
[00:02:48] So existence, what does that mean? Here we are in a universe at, relatively, the beginning of the universe, relative to its age. We know from astrophysics that although the Big Bang occurred some 20 billion earth years ago, that the universe is in its infancy, that it has many, many times, trillions of times, more lifetime in it than what has already gone down the pipeline.
[00:03:19] In the Vedic concept, existence, existence is made relevant by Consciousness. That is to say, in a vast universe with all of its forms and phenomena, a vast universe with all of its laws of Nature, a vast universe with all of its knock-on effects of cause and effect, cause and effect, and so on, we have no relevance whatsoever in existence, if indeed Universe cannot come up with Consciousness.
[00:03:52] If no one is aware, if no thing is aware, if Consciousness doesn’t exist, then existence becomes irrelevant. And so Consciousness is that which makes existence relevant. And in fact, existence becomes conscious in order to experience its own relevance. This is the Vedic Worldview.
[00:04:15] Is-ness and Am-ness
[00:04:15] ” Is-ness” is a concept in the Vedic Worldview. Is-ness is pure existence. Is-ness turns into “Am-ness.” Am, means I am That which was not conscious, has become conscious.
[00:04:32] In biology, this is always a vexing question for all biologists, which is at what point do mere molecules, amino acids, and proteins and whatnot, blending together somewhere in a crucible that ends up becoming alive, at what point do molecules actually make the jump between simply being physical particles and suddenly being a living thing, a life form?
[00:05:02] Presumably, in the very beginning, very simple life forms, but forms which end up being able to reproduce, self-sufficiently, forms that begin to show that they have predilections, forms that began through those predilections to display the fact that they’re conscious.
[00:05:22] They have preferences. They shy away from too much heat or lean in toward the warmth if it’s too cold. They move toward each other. They begin to relate to each other. What is that? Well, this is bios, meaning life, giving a format into which Am-ness, or consciousness, can find a home.
[00:05:45] And so when existence becomes conscious, then pure intelligence, in unmanifest form, becomes intelligent. When existence becomes conscious, then intelligence, which is just a potential, becomes intelligent. That is to say, it has a sense of being as a sense of being, a sense of “I am.”
[00:06:07] A Response Proves Consciousness
[00:06:07] And so this is a very interesting philosophical concept, that existence is made relevant by Am-ness, by Consciousness, by somebody knowing about it. If nobody knows about it, then what is the relevance of all of this ever-expanding universe?
[00:06:24] Consciousness does exist. I am conscious. You are conscious. And so, Consciousness is a fact. We can see Consciousness in a lot of places on earth, a sunflower using phototropism to follow the sun as it crosses the sky.
[00:06:41] Of course, we know the earth is rotating, and this is what gives the illusion of the sun going across the sky, but the sunflower knows how to capture the largest amount of sun rays through phototropism. Many other flowers do it too. And other kinds of plants do it.
[00:06:56] And we humans might even do a certain amount of it. Letting the sun fall on us in certain ways, forming our architecture in the Northern Hemisphere to capitalize on the Southern sun in wintertime. In the Southern Hemisphere, the opposite, to capitalize on the winter sun as the sun creeps across the Northern sky.
[00:07:17] So we have phototropism as one example of a response to stimuli, a response to stimuli, which gives the responder advantages. And we can figure that consciousness must be there, extant, if we see a response to stimuli.
[00:07:38] Why Does the One Become Many?
[00:07:38] Why does existence become conscious? Why does the one, indivisible, whole, unmanifest field zoom forth into manifestation? Why does the One become many?
[00:07:52] In the Vedic expression, there is a very careful conceptual delineation of this phenomenon, Oneness. So when existence or Is-ness first becomes conscious, then it is Am-ness. There’s just Consciousness.
[00:08:10] Consciousness, sitting alone. Consciousness in unmanifest form. Think of the colorless sap inside of a flower, which gives rise to all the colors and shapes and forms of the flower, but the colorless sap itself nonetheless is colorless. It’s not green. It’s not yellow. It’s not red. It’s not round. It’s not flat.
[00:08:31] And yet it can draw upon itself to create, in the flower, any kind of color, any kind of shape, everything from a sharp pointy thorn to a beautiful pink soft petal. All of it comes out of the colorless sap. And we find the colorless sap throughout the entire flower.
[00:08:49] So, Consciousness, in its one, indivisible, whole state has an unmanifest layer. The unmanifest layer of Consciousness we’re going to refer to as Being, or capital T capital A, The Absolute. That which has not yet developed progression or sequence, where change has not yet begun to occur. The non-changing, ever the same, one, indivisible, whole, unmanifest Consciousness.
[00:09:21] And when Consciousness breaks its symmetry, and it comes into sequences, it begins to move from the one into the many. We have to ask the question, why?
[00:09:35] Love is a Desirable State
[00:09:35] And the answer to the question is love. Why love? Because pure Self, pure absolute non-changing Self, that is to say Consciousness, in which there is no change, there is no “other,” needs to have non-self in order for love to occur.
[00:09:54] Love is a desirable state that emerges from the breaking of the symmetry of the Oneness moving into the many. When One makes its jump in the Big Bang from One to many, from a singularity to a vast and infinite variety of forms, the potential for love has suddenly emerged.
[00:10:20] Love is all about the Self disguising itself as many, and then rediscovering itself in the so-called “other.” In order for love to occur, there has to be an “other,” an “other.”
[00:10:37] And people do talk a lot about Self-love. We’ll get to that, just to jump out of all of the cliches for a moment, we’ll get to Self-love because, in fact, this is all about Self-love.
[00:10:48] The Love of Self for Itself
[00:10:48] In fact, love always, absolutely always, is actually love of the Self for itself.
[00:10:56] Let’s examine that idea for a moment. Whatever it is that we find lovable, we’ll use phrases like, for example, “That car that I was thinking of buying, the one that everybody wanted me to buy, I didn’t like it that much, but the one that I did buy, it kind of resonated with me. It resonated with me.”
[00:11:17] People say things like that, “I met somebody, and they were quite different to me in so many kinds of ways, but we had this kind of resonance. There was something resonating between us.” And what is that?
[00:11:28] It is the Self re-cognizing itself, recognizing. Re-cognizing means recognizing, recognizing itself in another, an “other.” You meet somebody, and you don’t know whether or not that person and you are likely to have any kind of friendship alliance, perhaps even a romantic alliance, but you’re going to base this on whether or not you feel a kind of resonance. And what is it that you’re resonating with?
[00:12:00] Sympathetic Vibration
[00:12:00] Let’s examine for a moment a physics concept known as sympathetic vibration.
[00:12:05] In a large orchestra hall, if the pianist is supposed to strike powerfully, the chord of G on the piano, followed by a long, sustained, and silence from the rest of the orchestra, then the string section all will, wisely, place their hand on their strings, because the string of G on every stringed instrument, responding to G moving through the air, their string of G will pick up because it has the potential to vibrate to G, the string of G will pick up G, and all of the cellos and violins and basses will all begin vibrating their string of G, and this will ruin the desired effect of the piano having its great moment followed by silence.
[00:12:54] This phenomenon is known as sympathetic vibration.
[00:12:57] You may have noticed sometimes that a particular machine or truck or something, passing by your home or passing by a place that you’re visiting, only that particular truck, only that particular vibration, will cause a certain window in your home to begin rattling on its own, because that truck is producing a vibration, the potential for which exists right here in your own home.
[00:13:25] And nothing else will make that window rattle except a very specific sound and sound wave, a certain tone that strikes the vibratory capability of the window and makes the windows start rattling. No other tone does it, only that one tone. And so, this is what’s known as sympathetic vibration.
[00:13:44] In the common parlance, we use the word resonance. Something inside me is picking up and vibrating in sympathy with something inside another, another. And when we feel that we have this word, we’ve created for it, love.
[00:14:03] Love is the potential of the entire manifest universe. The entire manifest universe, everything, every form, every phenomenon has in it the potential to begin vibrating in a resonant fashion with another thing that is akin to it, another thing that’s sufficiently like it.
[00:14:27] The Self inside of one, the deep inner Self, finds and recognizes it’s like in another form, in another phenomenon, whether that’s a human being or a mountain or a tree or a little puppy, or whatever.
[00:14:45] What Makes Love a Selective Phenomenon?
[00:14:45] And so, what is it that makes love a selective phenomenon? And it has to do, the answer has to do with this process of the Self recognizing the Self.
[00:14:57] If I’m sitting with someone and getting to know them and they say, “Let’s go to the bistro and have some hot drink and a little bit of something to eat.”
[00:15:06] And off the two of you go, and as you’re sitting with them, if they begin to reveal their thoughts, their feelings, their ideas, about particular things, and those revelations are revelations of the same way that you feel about those kinds of things, then there is a natural sympathetic vibration. There’s resonance.
[00:15:29] So, for example, you’re sitting looking at the menu, and there’s some otherwise meaningless music playing in the background, just to relieve people’s nervousness, and you notice that the new acquaintance is beginning to bop a little bit to some tune to which you personally have also bopped. And you might find that surprising and look across at them and say, “Do you like that music?”
[00:15:55] And they’ll say, “Oh, I adore that music from childhood. It reminds me of this, that, and the other, and Canada.”
[00:16:03] Then you say, “Canada. You were in Canada when you heard that?”
[00:16:07] “Yes, I was.”
[00:16:07] “In what year?”
[00:16:09] “Oh, 1999.”
[00:16:11] ” 1999. What part?”
[00:16:13] “Toronto. I was in Toronto in ’99. Where were you?”
[00:16:17] “Oh, let’s get down to the menu. We’ll talk about this later. Here comes the waiter.”
[00:16:21] Self Recognizing The Self
[00:16:21] And then, you both order your food, and when you start to order from the menu, the person across from you says, “Look, I was just about to order the same thing. Shall we just get a slightly larger one and share it?” And what you’re feeling is fantastic.
[00:16:35] And then you start talking about, perhaps, politics, great subject today, because there’s only two types these days, you either believe in this or you believe in that. And you find that this person is somebody who is in the large camp that you find yourself in, or you find that this person is in the large camp about the way you think about gender issues or whatever.
[00:16:57] And the next thing you’re starting to get these feelings, and we have to know, “Well, is this something that’s going to be a friendship? A friendship alliance?” Or, “Are we headed down the track of romance here? Looking at the possibility of livability? Am I even open for that? Who knows?”
[00:17:14] But this is really the starting of the Self having recognized the Self. We call it love. We call it love, but really what it is, is Self-love. Why? Because although we feel a little red-faced about admitting it, in fact, what we’re loving is ourself. We’re loving that about the person that we like about ourselves.
[00:17:39] I Love When You Are Like Me
[00:17:39] Now, at about this point of me giving this talk, sometimes I’ve had people raise their hand and object, so I’ll jump into that objection right away.
[00:17:45] Sometimes people will say, “But I like things about other people that are completely not like me.” And my answer is, “What you like about them that’s not like you, is that which they’ve been able to do, which you wish that you had.”
[00:18:00] So those ideas, those feelings, those expressions, that had you had the opportunity to evolve those same behaviors, those ideas, those expressions, and so on, then you would have. In other words, you’re projecting onto the other person your own desire to be something like that.
[00:18:20] I’ve even heard people say, in intimate situations, “I don’t just love you. I want to be you. I love you so much, I want to be you. If I was going to be a person other than me, I’d be you. I want to be you.”
[00:18:35] What is this? This is the Self recognizing the Self, either in present tense, as we are right now, or as once we were, past tense, or as we wish we could be, future tense.
[00:18:49] Self past, present, or future. What is this experience? Love. Love. ” I love you. What do I love about you? I love it when you are like me.”
[00:19:03] Under the Same Roof
[00:19:03] Now, we know this because those of us who’ve done the experiments and the research, and we’ve got under the same roof with somebody for a period of time, it is tolerable to the extent that we can figure out ways of keeping an eye open for behaviors that are like our own.
[00:19:22] “What! You squeeze the toothpaste from the top of the tube, not from the bottom of the tube? That’s not like me. I just discovered something that is going to be hard to tolerate because now we’re under one roof.
[00:19:35] ” I thought you were me. But now I’ve discovered that you squeeze the toothpaste from the opposite end of the tube to me.
[00:19:40] ” What! You just drop your towel on the floor after every use of it? You don’t use it three times before laundering it. Oh, that’s not like me. Uh oh, you’re not me. I’m beginning to discover the non-me-ness here.
[00:19:56] ” Let me keep my attention on the things that are me. I have to keep my attention on those, because if I don’t let those things dominate my awareness, then I discover that suddenly I’m under the same roof with somebody who is non-self. Non-self is in a place with me. Help, I’m trapped with non-self, and I’ve made promises.”
[00:20:14] All jokes aside, this I’m saying just to underscore and to give a little humor to your own experience, which is that Self adores itself. “I adore the me in you. I adore it when I can discover that you’re actually me in disguise.”
[00:20:34] We Don’t Want a Mirror Image of Ourself
[00:20:34] And we don’t want someone to be so flagrantly, so blatantly us.
[00:20:41] I mean, if that was all we wanted, we could stand in front of a mirror, flirting with ourselves all day. ” Oh, you winked? How cool. I winked at the same time. I like what you’re wearing today. You’re wearing the same thing as me. That’s because I’m looking at a mirror image of myself.”
[00:20:55] And even the mirror image might have some complaints because, in a mirror, you’re looking at somebody who, when you wink your right eye, that person’s winking their left eye. Maybe that bothers you if you’re very finicky.
[00:21:09] So, we don’t really want a mirror image of ourself. What we want is, we want that lovely experience of the unfolding of discovery, the unfolding of discovery.
[00:21:19] When we have a conflict with somebody, whether it’s a friend or whether it’s someone with whom we’ve chosen to reside and go domestic, when we have a conflict with somebody, and if we take the time and sit down and let them unpack and unravel why they behaved in a way that we wouldn’t have, had we been in a similar situation to what we think they’re in…
[00:21:44] As they unpack, we start to learn more about all of the cascade of mechanisms to which we can relate that they went through, today or yesterday or in the past years, that caused them to behave in that way.
[00:21:59] Love is a Product of Relatability
[00:21:59] And once we get that unfolding of understanding, once we get the revelation of what caused them to be in that consciousness state that they’re in, then there’s only one possibility. And that is, we relate.
[00:22:13] And the moment we relate, what happens? Sympathetic vibration resonance. I start to feel love, love.
[00:22:22] So love is a product of relatability. Love is the Self recognizing the Self, and the entire purpose of the relative world existing is to have this experience, and expand it and let it grow and grow and grow, in the face of all challenges to it.
[00:22:43] Would it be possible for a Capulet to love a Montague? The famous Shakespearian play, Romeo and Juliet, two families who were avowed blood rivals, enemies, and yet the cherished daughter of one, and the cherished son of another, fall in love with each other, in violation of all of the social constructs of the era, and against all possible likelihoods, and against all potential for agony.
[00:23:17] Similar story in the Anglo Celtic tradition, Tristan and Isolde, Tristan and Isolde is another Romeo and Juliet style story where the social obstacles to anyone being able to find love are transcended when the two parties to the experience of love find resonance. They find sympathetic vibration.
[00:23:42] State of Consciousness Explains Behaviors
[00:23:42] And so, sympathetic vibration, or resonance, is what love is all about. And the purpose of existence becoming conscious, and then the oneness of consciousness bifurcating into a vast variety of many, that is to say, the Self breaking itself up into lots of non-selves, lots of “others,” lots of little selves, is so that, over a period of time, those individual selves can begin to expand their sense of what it is they feel one with, and against all challenges to feel one, to feel one.
[00:24:22] And the more the challenges, the greater the triumph of love when I discover that I can actually relate to you. So, as our capability of being conscious grows, we begin to make certain discoveries. So, for example, we make a discovery that you cannot stop somebody from behaving according to their state of consciousness.
[00:24:46] Someone’s behavior, absolutely, is a product of whatever state of consciousness they’re in. What does this mean? On the one hand, we might look at that and go, “Yeah, well, that explains a lot.”
[00:24:58] If someone is in a particular state of consciousness, then they’re going to be constrained to a particular set of behaviors. Particular sets of behaviors are eminently explainable by the state of consciousness of the person.
[00:25:12] Empathy – Experience What Other Person is Experiencing
[00:25:12] Then we have to ask the next question. What is it that has caused the state of consciousness of the person? What is it that has made them what they are in the moment? The moment we begin to ask that question, we begin to use that wonderful human talent, which we call empathy, empathy, E-M-P-A-T-H-Y.
[00:25:34] Empathy is not to be confused with sympathy. Often it is and so, for those of you who know the difference, please forgive me, but for those of you who do not yet know the difference, empathy means literally the capacity, the capability, to whatever extent we have it, to experience from within another.
[00:25:55] In other words, the ability to experience what another person is experiencing. And it’s not just limited to people, by the way. What another animal is experiencing or, in its broader sense, to have empathy with all things.
[00:26:10] This is the ultimate consciousness state, which, in the Vedic worldview, we refer to as Unity Consciousness, to be able to experience from within everything.
[00:26:19] I Reject the Person Because S/he is Unlike Me
[00:26:19] But empathy is that capability to look at a situation in which you do not currently find yourself, somebody else is in a particular consciousness state, and you look at that consciousness state, and you think to yourself…
[00:26:32] “Well, interesting, really. If I allow myself, for the moment, to be an expansive thinker, and I allow myself to review my own progression, my own evolution into whatever state I’m in right now, I’ll have to acknowledge that if I had had the upbringing of the other, if I had found myself in the circumstances of the other, if I’d found myself having been formed as the other has been formed, then likely I’d have had no choice, but to behave exactly like them.
[00:27:07] “And I’m behaving like me, and I’m experiencing like me, which is different to what they’re experiencing, and different to how they’re behaving, because of my rather unique circumstances, the cascade of effects, the cast, the sequence, the sequential elaboration, of what it is that has formed me to this present moment, has made my style of behavior, my sets of responses different to those which I see in this other person.
[00:27:32] “But is it possible that I can relate? Is it possible that I can understand what it is that’s made that person behave in that way, or am I simply rejecting them? That’s the way they are. That’s the way this person is.
[00:27:47] “It’s not like me. My deep inner Self always is looking for its own like. Self is always looking for Self, and I do not find Self whatsoever in that person, and therefore, I reject that person, and I reject, in a sense, their right to exist. I find the fact that they exist offensive to me.”
[00:28:09] Our Capacity to See the Bigger Picture
[00:28:09] And what is that? It’s a failure of our consciousness state to be able to relate, to empathize, or to understand, in fact, that a certain state of consciousness that somebody is in and that dictates their behavior, absolutely, is a state that’s been arrived at by an entire sequential progression.
[00:28:29] And had you been in the same sequential progression as them, you’d have had no choice but to behave exactly like them.
[00:28:36] And so then that failure will turn into, “I don’t feel this person really has a right to be thinking, or a right to be speaking, or a right to expression, or a right to making statements about their ideas about how society should operate. And so I basically just want them to shut up.”
[00:28:56] And this kind of hatred that we have is an expression of our failure to be able to let our consciousness expand into an experience from within other forms and other phenomena sufficiently, that we can have relatability.
[00:29:14] The Self in that area, our own deep, inner Self, still has some work to do. It has to refine its perceptual capability, taste, touch, smell, sight, and sound. These senses need to be refined and refined and refined and refined and made more and more acute, so that we can pick up every little detail.
[00:29:34] Our capacity to see a bigger picture, not just about the person who we’re examining, but also to see the bigger picture about ourselves.
[00:29:44] Have You Always Been Such a Gorgeous Being?
[00:29:44] Were you ever anything less than what you are now? Was there ever a time in your memory, in your lifetime, where your style of thinking, if it had sustained itself to the current day, would have been a style of thinking and behavior which the you of today would look at and say, “I don’t relate to that”?
[00:30:03] In other words, have you always been such a gorgeous being, or were you once upon a time slightly less gorgeous than what you are today? And so our own incapacity to look at, rationally and with honesty and truth, our own sequential elaboration, our own progress, our own evolution over a period of time.
[00:30:23] So what is it that gives us the talent of being able to discover greater and greater outlets for sympathetic vibration, resonance, where Self recognizes Self? And we get that most enriching, most rewarding, deepest experience that’s available to a human being, which actually is the word love.
[00:30:45] We use love for pizza. We use love for shoes. We use love for response to fashions and things, but in fact, we overuse it. And we’re on the verge of having turned the word love into a garbage word. Because how can it mean anything when I say, “I love pepperoni,” and then I look at my loved one and say, “And I love you too. Pepperoni, you and shoes.”
[00:31:05] All Things Are Love in Potential
[00:31:05] Are they all in the same category? We need to begin to reserve the word love for things that actually deserve that expression, rather than letting it simply be a word akin to the word “like,” which, we’ve overused, and we’ve practically killed that word. We have almost no idea what it means anymore.
[00:31:27] And so love the ultimate purpose of the entire existence. Love is the nature of all things. It is not simply a thing that occurs within a framework.
[00:31:41] Love is not a fundamental thing that permeates and pervades everything because, for something to pervade and to permeate everything, there has to be something that’s not it and something which it permeates.
[00:31:55] Think of a sponge, a dry sponge, and you can make the sponge wet, and you can say, “This sponge, this kitchen sponge is now permeated with water.” That means there’s a thing that’s not water, the sponge, that is permeated and pervaded by water. So there’s water, and it’s all through and through the sponge, but the sponge is still not water.
[00:32:17] Transcendence Helps Us Discover Sympathetic Vibration
[00:32:17] This is not the nature of love. Love, in fact, is all things. All things are love in potential. Have you found a way to discover sympathetic vibration with all forms and phenomena yet?
[00:32:33] So what is it that brings about that talent? It is simply to transcend.
[00:32:40] To transcend is a word that we use. It’s a term of art that we use in Vedic Meditation to describe the experience that we have when systematically, twice every day, we close our eyes and we make use of a particular resonant, and there’s that word again, resonant vibration, a sound.
[00:33:02] The sound of a very carefully constructed word that we think in the mind, these words collectively are referred to as Bija mantras.
[00:33:12] A Bija mantra is a personalized sound that has no intended meaning. That is to say, it has no intended meaning, it’s only use is that when you think that particular word as a sound in your mind, that spontaneously and effortlessly, and without any interruption or controlling on your part, the sound, as it repeats in your mind, will start to become softer, fainter, and quieter.
[00:33:40] And as it does so, as it becomes more subtle, it also begins to vibrate in a way that is very sympathetic with the thinker of it. There are different mantras that work best for different people. And these mantras that work best for different people are discovered by a teacher of Vedic Meditation to be the best mantra for that individual.
[00:34:04] Consciousness Experiencing Consciousness
[00:34:04] Once you’ve received a personalized mantra from a qualified instructor of Vedic Meditation, you practice the technique twice each day, once in the morning and once in the evening, typically before the day begins, and sometime late afternoon or evening, before the evening activity begins.
[00:34:23] And as we sit with our eyes closed comfortably in a chair, our mind begins to follow that pulsation of sound, that impulse of sound, a mantra, as it becomes subtler, softer, quieter, fainter, the charm of it increases and increases.
[00:34:40] And fortunately our minds are designed in such a way that always they will move, without any effort, in the direction of anything that brings greater happiness than where we are right now.
[00:34:52] And so as the mantra begins to draw the mind and attract the mind into these ever-increasing subtle, quieter, softer states, eventually, the mantra vanishes and evaporates, and the meditator has an experience of transcendence.
[00:35:09] Transcendence means we retain consciousness, but all objects vanish for a moment. This is a mind which is experiencing pure awareness, Consciousness in its simplest form. Consciousness without a subject matter. Consciousness experiencing Consciousness. The Self experiencing the Self. Sounds familiar. Going back to the beginning of this talk.
[00:35:37] The State of Oneness
[00:35:37] This is the one, indivisible, whole consciousness field revisiting itself. And when it revisits itself, something gets reset inside the meditator. And what is that? It’s the whole purpose of existing. The whole purpose of being gets reset inside the meditator.
[00:35:58] As we settle into that least-excited state, we’re settling into the state of one-ness. And one-ness, when we’re saturated with that experience, we come out of the meditation state after 20 minutes, we begin to have a wonderful capability, and that is the capability to identify points of unity in the so-called “other,” so-called “other.”
[00:36:25] The so-called “other” is that, I say so-called because in fact, at a certain state of consciousness, we’re going to discover that “other” always needs to be put in quotes because, in fact, there is only one, indivisible, whole consciousness field that behaves as if it’s many. One ocean of pure existence that undulates as waves.
[00:36:50] An ocean is actually one thing, but it appears to be many. It has this one, indivisible, whole status, when taken as a whole, but through it, it has currents. Salt water moving through salt water, and humps of salt water moving on the surface of it in the form of waves.
[00:37:08] And yet, where is it all going? Well, it’s not going anywhere. Altogether, it appears to flow without altogether flowing.
[00:37:15] And so that Oneness is the ultimate truth of that Consciousness ocean, the ocean of Consciousness.
[00:37:23] Step Beyond the Incessant Tendency to Think
[00:37:23] What is the purpose of existence? In order to revisit that, in order to go back to our factory settings, as it were, we have to step beyond the incessant tendency to think, think, think, think, think, think, think.
[00:37:40] Most people, an average person, according to my studies with Sir John Eccles, the Nobel Prize winning neurologist from Australia, on average, he said, a person will have between 60,000 and 100,000 individual thought forms in a day.
[00:38:00] In neuroscience, we don’t call them thought forms. We call them cognitive processes.
[00:38:06] A cognitive process could be a desire. It could be a memory. It could be the recognition of a sensation in your body. It could be the recognition of a sound outside of you. And so, all of these things, which most of us simply refer to as thoughts, a thought, and each one of these thoughts is a stream of energy and intelligence.
[00:38:26] We know that thoughts have energy in them because particular kinds of thoughts, being had, will cause certain brain functions, electrical brain functions, to occur, and we can measure using an electroencephalograph, an EEG. Looking at brain waves we can measure the power coming from certain parts of the brain that reflect the energy that’s in a style of thinking. Thoughts have energy.
[00:38:49] The Reservoir of Infinite Creativity
[00:38:49] All processes require energy and thought is a process. Likewise, it requires energy for its existence. But thought is not a random explosion of energy in any old direction. A thought is always very specific. Thought differentiates.
[00:39:05] A thought is discriminating. And it’s that discriminating value of thought, which displays the intelligence in thought.
[00:39:13] So when we have between 60,000 and a hundred thousand impulses of thinking in a given day, in a given waking day, there must be a reservoir inside of us somewhere, which is the reservoir of infinite creativity, intelligence and energy, the source of all of those streams that are rising in the mind every day.
[00:39:34] A Vedic meditator follows a particular thought, a bija mantra, and allows the mind to touch that source of thought, the place which is the unmanifest Unified Field.
[00:39:47] It’s the unmanifest layer of our own inner Being. It is our return to Am-ness, Am-ness. Our return to pure inner potential, the reawakening of, and the isolation of, what our true nature is.
[00:40:06] And when we come out of that state, what happens is that all of our mechanisms of perception are attuned to the discovery of one’s own like in all other forms and phenomena, and that includes human beings. It doesn’t exclude human beings, it includes them.
[00:40:24] Your Social Responsibility
[00:40:24] And somebody might say, “I find it very easy to discover a sense of oneness with a forest or some trees or another animal, or maybe even natural forces like the wind or the sun or the sky around me and so on. But when it comes to humans, that’s the biggest challenge. Can I find anybody out there with whom I resonate?”
[00:40:47] And let me remind you that from the Vedic perspective, it is your social responsibility to make those discoveries within the human world. To learn how to discover Selfness within the so-called non-self. In other words, the ability to perceive with great accuracy and clarity, to, as a result of that, to appreciate with greater fullness, what somebody is experiencing.
[00:41:18] And with that, on the basis of that, to understand why their behavior is the way that it is, and then to find a way of relating to it, drawing upon our own experience, to give us the capacity for the correct way of interacting with that person.
[00:41:37] Correct interaction is always the loving behavior, the correct interaction. Love does not always say, “Oh, just let anybody get away with absolutely anything.” Sometimes love, when properly experienced, might require us to set boundaries.
[00:41:55] A Disciplined Approach to the Release of Attention
[00:41:55] Love may also find its greatest expression in a disciplined approach to the release of attention.
[00:42:02] “Will I give my attention to a thing or not?” Well, there may be, whatever it is, may be responsive to my demand for a particular kind of discipline, the recognition of some boundaries. And then there’s the possibility that we can explore and enjoy that sympathetic vibration, that resonance, which we call love, Self re-cognizing the Self.
[00:42:26] So, this really is the story of love. And I would like you, all of you, tens of thousands now, of listeners to this podcast, to do a little experiment. Each time you feel love for somebody or something, I’d like you just to take a moment and see to what extent are you actually just loving them, as we’re indoctrinated to think that’s what we’re doing, or to what extent are you actually loving yourself in them?
[00:43:00] What is the Mechanism for Love?
[00:43:00] You’re loving “Self-ness,” or “Selfie-ness.” You’re loving Selfieness in somebody. ” You feel very Selfie to me. I like the way you think. Goodness, me. Isn’t that so obvious? I like the way you think.
[00:43:15] “And why is that? Because you’re thinking like me, and I just love me. This is the truth of it.
[00:43:22] “I like the music you like and why is that? Because I like that music too. And I really love me. I love the way that you love what I love.
[00:43:31] ” I like the way that you move. Why? Well, either I moved that way once, or I moved that way now, or I wish to move that way sometime in the future, but wow. That’s a very selfie thing you’re doing there, that movement.” “
[00:43:46] All this like and love, we need to really look at this with the rational eye and just make that fundamental human confession, that love really is a celebration of the Self. Love is a celebration of Self recognizing Self.
[00:44:05] Now we need more of it. The Beatles were right. And all those songs about, what the world needs now is love sweet love and all of that, all those songs from the sixties and even some of them from today, I believe there are fewer of those today, but, all of this love talk, about how love is the answer, and all that’s needed is more love. Yes. But what is the mechanism?
[00:44:29] Unity Consciousness – The Highest Pinnacle of Human Development
[00:44:29] Without having a direct experience, every day, that takes you to the source of love, takes you to that deep inner Self, which is what all forms and phenomena actually are, the ocean undulating as waves, the one, indivisible, whole ocean of consciousness, manifest as individualities, individual traits, a lot of individual selves actually is one, indivisible, whole thing.
[00:44:58] Without that, without practicing that technique twice every day, it’s going to be a real challenge for us to find Self within non-Self, to break down the barrier, the apparent barrier, it’s not a real barrier, of someone else’s behavior not being recognizable by me as actually an extension of myself.
[00:45:24] As we grow, with our practice of Vedic Meditation, our mind becomes more and more adept at developing that capability of seeing the Self within all things, then ultimately, we arrive at the highest pinnacle of human development. And that pinnacle is, it has a very specific name, Unity Consciousness.
[00:45:48] In Unity Consciousness, all that exists is the Self. That is to say, “From deep inside, I am experiencing my own unbounded, indivisible, whole unity state. That is my baseline of experience.
[00:46:05] “That’s what I am. I find it expressing itself through a human body, expressing itself through the use of the storyline of the human body to make itself relevant to the need of the time, whatever the evolutionary need of the time may be.
[00:46:21] When We Have Unity Consciousness, We’re Living Love
[00:46:21] “And that need of the time is the need for all forms and all phenomena to evolve together into a similar realization that I’ve had within myself. And I can find myself in any form and in any object. All forms and all objects are extensions of my own essential nature.”
[00:46:46] When we have that consciousness state, we are living love. We are vibrating with love, and we are causing sympathetic vibration of love everywhere we go, through every thought, through all speech, through all action. Arrival at any destination, for any purpose, we are causing vibration of love to occur in all others.
[00:47:12] Whether we speak, we don’t speak, whether we act, we don’t act, simply our presence is causing resonant, sympathetic vibration everywhere. And this is what all those songs were talking about.
[00:47:26] “What the world needs now is more love. Love is all we need, and blah, blah, blah, love, love, love, love, love. Let’s get some love going here,” but get love going here is a very, very great idea, but what’s the mechanism?
[00:47:38] The mechanism is transcend, step beyond all these individual boundaries. Revisit the one, indivisible, whole consciousness field deep within yourself. Awaken that through the regular practice of Vedic Meditation twice a day. And then come out into activity and engage and, as a result of engaging, we live a life that is growth to stabilized Unity Consciousness.
[00:48:06] Discover the Self With Non-Self With Vedic Meditation
[00:48:06] What we really need is a larger percentage of people living Unity Consciousness in their day-to-day lives. And Unity Consciousness is not just something you can attain by having thoughts about it. One could sit around thinking about unity all the time, and then go out to the world to, buy some groceries and find everybody in the world just absolutely eminently annoying.
[00:48:28] ” Everyone in the traffic, everyone in the store, and everything is just so annoying to me because I’m busy thinking about unity. And why are you behaving so badly? I think we just need more love. How come you’re not loving?”
[00:48:40] Not actually equipping ourselves with the mechanisms for experiencing unity points with others.
[00:48:49] Without the practice of Vedic Meditation, I don’t really see how it’s possible for someone to, to live that quality of Unity Consciousness in their daily life, spontaneous living of it. Not just thinking about it, not just thinking thoughts about unity.
[00:49:06] Thoughts about unity are good because it might start some progress toward opening up those mechanisms through regular meditation. But a thought of unity is a thought, and thoughts can easily go away if the world overshadows our thinking with its insistence upon being non-Self. And so this capability to discover the Self within the non-Self, love, that capability is one of the greatest and first and foremost results of the regular practice of Vedic Meditation.
[00:49:39] Jai Guru Deva.