What Makes The Sacred Powerful?

“The world reflects back to us whatever it is, we radiate to the world. The world can be for us as we can be for it. This is the basic idea of the sacredness that we can experience in the world.”

Thom Knoles

Episode Summary

Many of us invoke the common phrase “Is nothing sacred?!” when we feel that something of value to us isn’t experienced the same way by others. What if we told you that everything could be sacred, to the extent that we make it so?

All of us hold certain things sacred in our lives, whether it be a memento, an icon, a place, a ritual, maybe some kind of religious artifact or even a cuddly toy from our childhood. But how often do we give thought to what it is that makes these things sacred for us?

This episode is a reminder from Thom that we can get more depth, more richness out of life, firstly by appreciating how we make things sacred, and secondly by choosing to make more things sacred in our life. 

Thom invites us to go beyond the symbolic nature of that which we hold sacred and to actually have a conscious relationship with it. 

He also shares how nothing is off the table when it comes to holding something sacred, leaving us open to the possibility of living a life where nothing is taken for granted and everything is available for appreciation. 

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Episode Highlights

01.

What Makes Things Sacred?

(00:45)

02.

Prana Pratishtha — Becoming the Sentient

(02:47)

03.

Everyone has Experienced Love

(04:40)

04.

Bringing Sentience Together in an Alliance

(06:23)

05.

The Process of Navajo Weaving…

(07:49)

06.

 Prana Pratistha in Action

(09:13)

07.

The World Reflects Back to Us

(10:47)

08.

The Man Who Enjoyed Himself in Prison

(13:00)

09.

The World is for Us as We Can Be for it

(15:06)

10.

Shoes-Off Rooms

(17:04)

11.

A Special Room

(18:39)

12.

Nobody’s Watching

(19:41)

13.

Prana Pratishtha Creates a State of Consciousness

(21:13)

14.

 The Unified Field Starts to Undulate

(22:37)

15.

Everything is Natural

(24:43)

16.

The Capacity to Awaken Consciousness

(25:42)

17.

Many Layers of Sophistication

(27:26)

18.

Two Dreamers Don’t Dream the Same Dream

(28:29)

19.

Infinite Potential

(29:57)

20.

Turiya—The Fourth Consciousness State

(31:18)

21.

Cosmic Consciousness—The Fifth State

(33:07)

22.

God Consciousness and Unity Consciousness

(35:09)

23.

Consciousness Manifests Itself in One’s Surroundings

(36:48)

24.

Same World, Different Experience

(38:11)

25.

What Effect Are We Having on the World?

(39:55)

26.

Inviting the World Into Our Consciousness State

(41:18)

27.

Nothing is Inanimate.

(42:36)

28.

The Gold and the Diamond Qualities

(44:45)

29.

Disgusting

(45:54)

30.

Make the World We Want to Make

(46:58)

31.

Culturing Our Environment

(48:31)

Jai Guru Deva

Transcript

What Makes The Sacred Powerful?

[00:00:45] What Makes Things Sacred?

Let’s spend a little time discussing how things that are sacred become sacred. What it is that makes them sacred. What are the mechanics by which something that is sacred brings us benefits?

 First of all, it’s important for us to review the idea that we live in a world that is observer-dependent. The most successful theory of modern science and physics tells us that there are no particles unless there is someone, some consciousness expecting there to be a particle, that even the particulate world is a response to our,expectation.

So consciousness is that which conceives the idea of sacredness. So what is a thing that is sacred to you? What is a thing that has great meaning to you? How does it become so?

In Sanskrit, we have a beautiful word called, two words, Prana Pratishtha. Prana is the life force that is just in the air. It’s a fundamental animating force, and some of you may have, either with me and my teaching, or even in yoga asana studios, you may have learned pranayama — a method of moving the breath back and forth between nostrils or breathing in particular ways that are designed to enliven prana.

And certainly, on our retreats, we have a teaching of pranayama. Prana and then yama. Prana, the life force that is in the air, the animating force. Yama to administer something, a technique of administering.

[00:02:47] Prana Pratishtha — Becoming the Sentient

But let’s get back to our sacred objects conversation, Prana Pratishtha. Pratishtha. Pratishtha means becoming sentient; something becomes sentient, which was not sentient before. For those of you who are not familiar with the word sentient, it means a thinking thing, a thing that is able to have a sense of self, something that has self-consciousness. Prana Pratishtha.

Prana pratishtha, means the process of enlivening or awakening, a quality of being animate. A thing which was before a non-entity becomes an entity, so the making of entity. And this process is a process that simply occurs as a result of attention. Even those of us who are the most cynical about such ideas would have to acknowledge that love is a thing that exists, and love is a thing that can bring you great joy, if we attempt to analyze it.

So it becomes inescapably a self-referral phenomenon, meaning it exists to the extent that we place attention on it.

Almost everyone has experienced some form of love whether it’s love of a parent or love of a romantic partner, or if we want to go from the human to the world of animals, love for a pet.

[00:04:40] Everyone has Experienced Love

But many of us may have also, perhaps because we’re a little shy about admitting it, may have had love for things that are not particularly animate. Love for a doll, love for a tree, love for a particular mountain, love for a particular region, something, someplace that you love.

And perhaps again, perhaps we keep these things a little secret because we’re not sure how to talk about them, because it’s not part of our culture to do so, that love may make you feel as though you have some kind of alliance with the object of the love.

The object of your love, be it a mountain, a region, a tree, a doll, a particular object that maybe somebody gave you once that you treasure… so, those things that are your treasures, these are the objects of our love.

In the Vedic worldview, there’s an actual phenomenon occurring, and that phenomenon is referred to as Prana Pratishtha. So Prana Pratishtha is the process of bringing sentience into an alliance that you have with a form or a phenomenon.

The phenomena may be something that, if I go to the high mountains around here, where I live in the highest point in Arizona, I notice the snowboarders and skiers all say that they love snow.

[00:06:23] Bringing Sentience Together in an Alliance

It begins snowing, and then they get this look in their eyes as if they’ve just met a long-lost lover who’s been away for ages. The romance that somebody can have with particles of crystalline water falling out of the sky.

But then, when it graces the ground and covers the trees with a blanket and muffles all of the sound, and it gives them an opportunity to enjoy using gravity to slide down hillsides, then there is this whole experience. It’s fun. It’s fun.

So, how do we go about, what is it that we’re doing that causes us to develop an alliance with a form or a phenomenon?

Be it the human or some kind of treasure that you have at home, maybe some pocket knife that somebody gave you when you were a child, or maybe some other kind of object that is very dear to you, an amulet or a talisman or a string of beads or a watch, or a phenomenon, like a certain breeze that may come in the summertime and grace your cheek, that reminds you familiarly with a particular region, a particular time.

[00:07:49] The Process of Navajo Weaving…

Perhaps it’s a design; as I’m saying all this to you, I’m looking down at the geometric patterns that appear on a beautiful Navajo weaving that’s about a hundred years old. It was given to me by my great-grandfather, and that weaving is as delightful to let the eyes play over it today as it was when it was made.

I love to think about the Navajo woman who would have had this beautiful weaving on a vertical loom, how much attention she put into it.

First, the herding and tending of certain sheep that live here in the Southwest, and then herding them together and taking a particular pair of shears and shearing some of their wool, not all of it, enough that they can come through the winter comfortably, because we want those sheep to be there next year.

Bringing the wool back home and carding it, meaning to take a comb through it and comb out all of the little pine cones and things very lovingly. Maintaining the lanolin that’s in the wool so that when it criss crosses over itself, as thread, as a rug, the lanolin prevents the threads from cutting through each other and making holes.

[00:09:13] Prana Pratistha in Action

So careful lanolin preservation and then taking it and twisting it and with that, twisting it, singing certain beautiful, Dene is the proper word for Navajo, Dene hymns and chants, chanting to the wool as it’s being twisted, thanking the sheep, thanking all of the elements, the sky, the rain, the snow, the dry air, dry air produces more lanolin in the wool.

And then carefully going out, once the twisted wool is prepared, and gathering all of the different herbs and lichen and other coloring elements that grow, and then gathering all of those and grinding them into dye and then placing that dye carefully into a pot and then drawing certain of these strands and skeins of twisted wool through the dye, singing all the time, singing to the wool, singing to the dye, singing to the plants.

And then placing it all on a vertical loom and, step by step, over the period of the next nine months, takes about nine months for a Navajo woman, and these are only ever woven by women, to finish the process of an intricate design, which will last hundreds of years if properly taken care of. This is the process of Prana Pratishtha.

[00:10:47] The World Reflects Back to Us

We have that old saying from the Christian world, “As you sow, so shall you reap.” It’s not just a way of telling people that bad things are going to happen to them because they did something bad.

It also means that the world reflects back to us whatever it is, we radiate to the world. The world can be for us as we can be for it. This is the basic idea of the sacredness that we can experience in the world. So, the world around us is a reflection of the quality of consciousness that we radiate into the world.

Every thought, every feeling, every perception, every understanding is a vibrational form that emanates from us, and it reflects off of every surface. There are some surfaces light years away, and there are some surfaces that will not be able to return to us in one human body life. There are other surfaces that are more close, in more immediate proximity.

And when that reflection comes back to the doer, the knower of who has created that radiation, then it bears with it the qualities of the thing from which it reflected, and also bears with it the original seed of consciousness that was the propelling force, taking that vibration into the world around oneself.

So this is the basic Vedic idea. We create our surroundings, and we’re in turn influenced by them. We create our surroundings, and we’re influenced by them. And this idea then is something which goes on to say, if we are not enjoying our surroundings, there’s always something that we can do to bring about change in the way that our surroundings are reflecting back to us.

[00:13:00] The Man Who Enjoyed Himself in Prison

In other places, I told an elaborate tale of a man who became a head of state in an African nation, who had spent years and years in solitary confinement in a stone-walled prison on an island, and how, during his incarceration, when he was put in there and meant to suffer, that although he did his share of suffering, he began to discover a beam of light, a shaft of light that made its way through two thick stones that made up the stone wall, and the shaft of light would appear at a particular time every day and track its way across the wall of his cell.

And how he was able to enjoy that shaft of light, to animate it, to speak to it, to let it play over his face and his eyes and his nose and his mouth and his ears and shifting his face around.

And then occasionally just glancing at it and watching the motes of dust floating around in the shaft, as he put it, like little galaxies floating in space. And then the shaft of light, he would sing at it sometimes, and he would dance around it sometimes, and all very quietly because he didn’t want to alert the guards to the fact that he was enjoying himself in there, otherwise, they’d figure out that and block it up.

So, his quiet relationship with this shaft of light was his opportunity to experience something which he was able to cause to be divine. And this is a very important point I’m making, something which has the potential for being an inspiration to us, we lift it to its highest value. It’s we who do it.

[00:15:06] The World is for Us as We Can Be for it

We live in a world that is self-referral. The world is for us as we can be for it. We live in a self-referral world. And so, after years and years of learning from this shaft of light, waiting for it, watching how it shifted around during different seasons, how it moved differently in autumn, how it rose or appeared differently in summer and in winter, and so on, he found it to be an educational process.

Now, if somebody was in a different consciousness state, perhaps make use of that natural phenomenon that was there, it could have even just been annoying. Suppose somebody is walking along a trail somewhere, and they stub their toe on some big rock, and then they think, “Oh, my toe. That’s my… a terrible experience. That rock, it hurt my toe.”

And they might think, “I need to get a sledgehammer and destroy that,” but on close inspection before sledgehammering it, they discover it’s no ordinary rock. It’s a diamond. Now suddenly, “Oh, diamond. What was I talking about? My toe doesn’t hurt that much. Now there’s a beautiful diamond.”

To what extent am I able to actually assess what it is that is a boundary? Something that’s a boundary around me, a form or a phenomenon. Is it actually something that is negatively dictating my experience, or do I have the capacity to awaken and enliven in it some properties of the Divine?

[00:17:04] Shoes-Off Rooms

Some of us may have got into a particular habit at home…

Maybe, just maybe, I’m not suggesting you should do this, but maybe some of you have done it. You might have certain rooms, that are shoes-off rooms where, as in the east, in most Eastern countries, east of Europe, much further east from Europe and Asia, there is frequently a tradition of removing the shoes before going into a place. And why?

I learned when I lived in India the reason why. Because in family homes there, most people are not sitting about on chair. They have a greater flexibility in their legs because, from the time of being a small child, they sat on a floor with perhaps a little table, a low table around, and everybody’s legs relaxedly gravitated more toward the floor. And then the floor area needed to be a clean area.

So, it was cause you might have your meals there sitting around a table, taking your meals. Also, you’re spending time sitting on the floor and then, if somebody was to walk in from the streets where there is animal poop, and there’s people having spat, and there’s dirt and dust and all kinds of disgusting things, and then presumably, that’s all over the bottoms of the shoes, unless we have our shoes electrostatically cleaned before we walk into the house with them.

And the shoes end up representing the outside world and not only represent it; they can actually drag it right into your place of eating.

[00:18:39] A Special Room

And so shoes being kept at the door, and very useful from the doorway outward, but not tramping around all the things from outside, from the ground outside, into the house and the place where you, at the stratum, the floor, stratum, where you spend some time.

So, then that idea of removing the shoes before going into certain places that you’ve decided are sacred.

So then imagine there’s a special room, it might be your meditation room, it might be a bedroom, it might be other rooms of the house that are shoes-off places, places where shoes are left behind, for a variety of reasons.

But as you continue to observe this habit, you may occasionally notice that that place starts to feel very special, and it’s beginning to feel special because you are making it special. It’s special to the extent that you make it so.

[00:19:41] Nobody’s Watching

One day, it may have been a snowy day or a rainy, muddy day, you walked outside to get into your car and realized that you had forgotten your car keys, and you realized that they were in the pocket of a jacket that was over there in that shoes-off room, but you have these mud boots or snow boots, and they’re laced up, and it’s a bit of a rigmarole getting them off.

And you might think to yourself, “Well, nobody’s watching, I’m the only one who will know if I leave my boots on. And then I’ll just, maybe if I tiptoe that will make it okay. I’ll kind of tiptoe into the shoes-off place with my boots on and get those car keys out of the pocket, rather than taking the boots off, getting the keys, having to put them all back on again and then departing.”

And so is this going to desanctify the space? Well, the only person who can really say that is you because you’re the one who made it a sanctified space. You’re the only one who can make it a desanctified space. We live in a self-referral world.

To what extent for you is a thing actually sacred? In other words, to what extent do you have a feeling that you’re the only consciousness in the place?

[00:21:13] Prana Pratishtha Creates a State of Consciousness

If I’m the only consciousness in the place, then nothing is going to react in any way or be offended in any way by my walking in there with my boots and getting my car keys. But if I’ve done Prana Pratishtha successfully, that is to say, by placing my attention on all the objects of the room and the room itself, and I’ve decided that it’s a sanctified space, then I’ve endowed consciousness into that space.

And presumably, that space is going to be aware of my change of mind, about how much respect I show to it. And if that’s the case, I’ll be sure to get my shoes off because I’m not walking into just an inanimate form.

I’m walking into a space that has been given by me, legitimately, expectation, and that expectation is reflecting back to me. I can feel the expectation reflecting back to me.

When properly performed, Prana Pratishtha has the effect of creating consciousness or awakening consciousness in the space.

[00:22:37] The Unified Field Starts to Undulate

In physics, we have a way of looking at all of Nature by virtue of its fundamental characteristic. There is one whole, individual conscious field. This is the Unified Field. One whole, individual consciousness field.

And that one indivisible, whole consciousness field goes into perturbation. It goes into undulation. It begins to vibrate. And when it vibrates, it gives the appearance of not just the oneness, but many. Something akin to the way that a still glassy ocean surface could begin changing into a wavy, choppy wave-covered portion on its surface.

It’s still one thing, one indivisible, whole thing. But now it’s appearing as many, many waves, even though it’s only one thing. Like that, our whole Universe of forms and phenomena is actually one indivisible, whole consciousness field and that field starts perturbating. It begins to undulate.

Some of those undulations have relatively sophisticated consciousness. And whether you feel you’re a sophisticate or not, I’d like you to start thinking of yourself as a relatively sophisticated… overlapping layers of the Unified Field folding back on itself, again and again, many times, and you end up with a human brain.

And the human brain has the capacity to modulate the consciousness field in some very unique ways the way that we’re able to perceive all the other waves, all the other forms and phenomena in the world around us, and to make use of them.

[00:24:43] Everything is Natural

These are the laws of Nature and the natural phenomena, the natural world, by which we’re surrounded. Sometimes people say to me, “I’m not surrounded by a natural world. I live in an apartment in the city.”

And if I’m with them at the time, I’ll just say, “What about that rug that your feet are sitting on?”

“Oh. This?”

“Yeah.”

 “It’s Berber. It’s a Berber carpet.”

“Oh, did you know that a Berber carpet is something that is animal hair? There was some sheep running around out in the hillsides and you have your feet on top of that fur.”

“Oh.” They say,

“What about this hardwood floor that’s underneath the carpet? That was a tree standing in a forest once. A tree standing in the forest and a sheep running around. What about the socks that you are wearing? What are they made of? Cotton.”

“Oh.”

“That was something that was growing in a field not so long ago, before somebody came and picked it.”

[00:25:42] The Capacity to Awaken Consciousness

And we can go on and on, and people often think they’re not living amongst Nature. In fact, we can’t help it. We’re surrounding ourselves by Nature. Even things that are so-called synthetic, we call it synthetic if we can’t find it growing in a forest in its current form.

But even so-called synthetic things have no choice but to be manufactured from the natural world. A synthetic thing is not actually synthetic. It is simply something that’s been plucked from the natural world and been combined with other things by humans to create some sort of synthesis, an object of synthesis.

So our world is nothing but Nature, The forms, and phenomena folded over on itself, again and again, Unified Field creating different degrees of sophistication, but a fundamental property of the Unified Field is that it is conscious.

And so, a form or an object is not simply a form. It has consciousness in it. And our consciousness, which is also Unified Field folded over many, many times in an elaborate way where, if you like, akin to this Navajo weaving, we are a particularly complex set of folds and weavings and twists and turns that make us into what we are.

And when we place our attention on an object, we have the capacity to awaken in that object, its own level of consciousness. And we also bring our own level of sophistication to it.

[00:27:26] Many Layers of Sophistication

Just as if you have a conversation with a little toddler, a little human child, and you have more experience, more education, more knowledge than that child has, presumably you do, something about that interaction is educational to the child. The child may even begin to emulate some of your words in perhaps even lovably garbled language.

And so, even the activity of interaction with a form or a phenomenon is imbuing that form, that phenomenon, with our own consciousness state. The more heightened our consciousness state is, the more powerfully the object is imbued with the qualities of our consciousness state.

Human consciousness has, as we’ve discussed elsewhere, many layers of sophistication.

[00:28:29] Two Dreamers Don’t Dream the Same Dream

We’ve talked elsewhere about the seven states of consciousness. The least conscious state is the sleep state. Let’s call that state one. The next more conscious state is the dreaming state. But the dreaming state has limitations in how well it can commune.

So, for example, if two people are lying down in the same room and each of them is dreaming, neither of them is having a shared experience with the other. And so, although we may be dreaming, we may be having full experiences that seem very real to us at the time, we’re not having a shared experience with anybody who’s nearby or anybody anywhere.

That’s why, if you wanted to make a rather deprecatory statement about somebody, like a slight insult, you might say to them, “You’re dreaming it,” meaning you’re having a unique experience that nobody else is having. You’re dreaming.

So dreaming consciousness state, though it may have some value, and we can talk elsewhere about what that value is, every state of consciousness has its value. It’s not, one of its values is not shared experience. Two dreamers don’t dream the same dream. They’re having an utterly different experience of utterly different worlds.

[00:29:57] Infinite Potential

And then we have the waking state, which has a vast spectrum compared with dream state, compared with sleep state. We could be in a foggy waking state, or we could be in the waking state with great crystal clarity of perceptual ability and at a wide range of potential responses to demands that are being made on us.

And so then, we have waking state. When in the waking state, if we learn how to meditate, Vedic Meditation awakens an experience inside of us. As we de-excite the waking state, sitting vertically upright in a chair, with our backs supported and our head relaxed we begin using our Vedic Meditation mantra, the mind settles down to quieter and quieter, less and less excited states.

Those less excited states are more expansive. They expand our individuality more and more into its Unified Field quality. That Unified Field quality of consciousness has infinite potential in it, infinite potential. When we go beyond the faintest level of the mantra and step beyond thought, we have a moment of the fourth state.

[00:31:18] Turiya—The Fourth Consciousness State

This fourth state of consciousness is a wakeful hypo-metabolic, hypo means low, restful, hypo-metabolic state. Our body rests very, very deeply. Our mind is sitting in that Absolute quality. We’re neither awake, in the usual sense of awake and thinking, nor are we asleep but we are resting many times more deeply than sleep, nor are we dreaming.

The non-dreaming, non-waking, non-sleeping state, a wakeful state of pure restfulness; this is the fourth state of consciousness, the fourth state.

So sleep, number one. Dream, number two. Regular waking state with all of its variety of experiences, the third state. Fourth state Turiya, in Sanskrit we say Turiya, it means the fourth. Turiya, fourth state of consciousness, deep restfulness experience of the Absolute.

When we meditate regularly twice every day, as a result of our twice-daily practice, we awaken that fourth state that is the underlying state. It is the baseline of our inner consciousness field. Awakening that more and more every day and stabilizing its wakefulness, the fourth state starts to become a regular part of our everyday experience.

More and more stable awakened fourth condition, the underlying field that is there quietly underneath all of the thoughts, which itself is the source of all the thoughts, all thoughts issue forth from that fourth state.

[00:33:07] Cosmic Consciousness—The Fifth State

That fourth state begins to combine. It starts to homogenize into our everyday experience. And when the fourth state is fully homogenized into our everyday experience, we have a new name for it. It’s the fifth state, Cosmic Consciousness.

In Cosmic Consciousness, one has that awareness that, “I am the underlying blissful field of Being, and at the same time, I am a thinking, active, feeling human. I don’t have to sit and close my eyes to meditate in order to experience my baseline. My baseline has now been incorporated into, and is part of the totality of my whole waking, dreaming, and sleeping life.”

So, in the fifth state of consciousness, we are no longer in those alternating states, either awake or dreaming or sleeping. We’re in one state of consciousness at all times, fully awake, fully potentiated, vast consciousness field, either vertical, moving around, speaking and talking and opening doors and closing them and getting online and writing emails and texts and all the things that we do…

Driving cars and performing gymnastics and sitting around weaving Navajo rugs and all that. “I’m all this. And I’m also the Totality field.”

The fifth state, Cosmic Consciousness is the name that’s given to it, cosmic means all-inclusive, that Cosmic Consciousness state then naturally moves into the sixth state, glorified Cosmic Consciousness, where every object can be seen at its subtlest level, where it is first emerging out of the unmanifest Unified Field.

[00:35:09] God Consciousness and Unity Consciousness

The sixth state, we call God Consciousness. Then the seventh state Unity Consciousness. “I, the Knower, am the Absolute field,” that’s been the truth ever since cosmic consciousness was realized. “And now I, the Knower, the Absolute field, have perceptual acuity so great that I’m able to experience the Unified Field, that is, myself, in every object. The Self is experiencing the Self in every object.”

So, with these seven states of consciousness, there are seven worlds that are lived by people, the world of the sleep state, a world that is null and void. The world of the dreaming state. We call it illusory because no one can have a shared experience with us.

Whatever we’re experiencing is just completely happening inside our consciousness, and there’s no evidence that the outside world, the body, or anything else, went through any change as a result of our dreaming.

The waking state, we have connectivity between our inner consciousness and the object world. I think a thought, and I can move things around. I decide to pick up a cup of water and drink it, a hand actually moves out, and the water goes into the body.

Plus, I can have shared experiences with people to varying degrees of shared experience, where I can have a modicum of agreement with other people about what just now happened for the last three minutes.

[00:36:48] Consciousness Manifests Itself in One’s Surroundings.

Then the transcendent state, fourth state; no thoughts, no mantra, no nothing. Just pure, flat unmanifest consciousness. Being. Then the fifth state, Being homogenizes itself into the waking state and then eventually into the sleep and dreaming states too. One is experiencing Absoluteness as oneself at all times, day and night.

The sixth state hyper-acute perceptual capability to be able to see the subtlest sitting on the surface of all the gross objects of the world.

And then the seventh state, the deep inner transcendent field, which is your reality, being able, through the body, to experience the deep inner transcendent field in every object, Unity.

Each of these seven states and the seven worlds that they create, these are the states of consciousness, which are transferred through the process of Prana Pratishtha.

One’s surroundings are always a reflection of one’s consciousness state. You may have many times experienced in your life that you are in a place which you find satisfactory, perfectly okay.

[00:38:11] Same World, Different Experience

Let’s use a common experience that somebody might have. You’re watching some show on TV, or maybe in a theater, or perhaps you’ve gone to live theater, and there may be somebody who’s sitting next to you who just doesn’t get it.

They don’t seem to be enjoying whatever it is that you’re both observing, as much as you are. For you, the thing that you’re observing is engrossing, fascinating, and intriguing, or perhaps hilarious, if it’s meant to be so.

To the person sitting next to you, perhaps due to their tiredness, perhaps due to their relative lack of erudition and education and reading, perhaps due to their not understanding the language as well as you do, perhaps due to any number of things. Perhaps they’re annoyed with you, that’s always a possibility, they’re not enjoying sitting there even though the same thing’s happening right in front of them.

You’re enjoying it. You want to stay. They’re not enjoying it and they’re showing signs of restlessness. Who is in what world? The world that you are in is not a world that everybody will agree upon.

Different states of consciousness experience different worlds. Different states of consciousness create different worlds. The world around us is a creation of the state of consciousness in which we find ourselves. Is it a field of opportunity, or is it a field of obstruction? Two opposite potential looks at a thing.

[00:39:55] What Effect Are We Having on the World?

What effect are we having on the world around us? What is the effect that we’re having on it? What can we bring as an effect on that world? Does everybody have only the same amount of potential? Does everyone have exactly the same effect on the world around them? Of course, not.

Each one of us can change the dynamic of the way that the world around us is interacting with us, depending on what state of consciousness we’re in.

As far as sacredness goes, a thing is made sacred by whatever state of consciousness we’re in at the time that we decide it should be so.

From a very simple waking state of consciousness to moving in the state of Cosmic Consciousness, to moving and interacting with the object and phenomenal world in God Consciousness, or moving and interacting with the object world while in Unity Consciousness, where the Self is experiencing the Self at all times, everything has become sacred, everything.

[00:41:18] Inviting the World Into Our Consciousness State

And so, our world is a world that… I strongly recommend we allow the world around us to be invited into our consciousness state. Rather than, I look at the weather and I might say, “Well, rain is coming. Oh, I don’t like rain. I’ve had too much rain in Australia lately. Not more rain. Oh no.”

Or we could be in a drought state and say, “Oh. No rain. No rain, blue sky. No rain day after day of sunshine. Just sun? Just sun? What is this, a desert?”

Are deserts bad really? If you’re at a certain consciousness state, you could enjoy the desert, you could enjoy the rain. You could enjoy the snow. You could enjoy anything. You could enjoy a prison cell on Robben Island in South Africa, off the coast of South Africa, the shaft of light sneaking through the crack every day.

What state of consciousness are you in? We can tell this by how much we’re able to derive joy from our environment, to what extent are we able to enter into an exchange of energy and information with the environment in which we find ourselves?

[00:42:36] Nothing is Inanimate.

We’re not conscious beings living in an object world that’s devoid of consciousness. This is not the reality. It’s not a scientific statement to make. We are consciousness fields interacting with other consciousness fields, even if, by most accountings, many of the things surrounding us are inanimate forms.

From the Vedic perspective, there’s nothing that is ordained to be inanimate. Once you are able to appreciate the world of forms and phenomena around you from the highest state of consciousness, you’ll make a wonderful discovery. There are no such things as inanimate things.

The Unified Field has consciousness in every form and phenomenon. If you’re looking at a rock lying on the ground, we can’t say that it is devoid of a repertoire of capabilities. Its repertoire. It’s in rock consciousness, and the repertoire of rock consciousness, compared with the repertoire of potential behaviors of human consciousness, there could be quite a large gap.

But we can’t say that it has no repertoire. That rock is made up of atoms and molecules. All of which are right now emerging out of the one indivisible, whole consciousness field of The Universe, the Unified Field. And that rock is, for the moment, playing the role of being a rock, but it is a role, and that role has a repertoire.

Would you be able to awaken and enliven a greater repertoire in the rock? Are you able to recognize something in that rock that is more capable than what the average person is able to? To what extent do you give it value?

[00:44:45] The Gold and the Diamond Qualities

Evidently, people give a lot of value to rocks. I notice when I move around in polite culture, that very often people will hold up a ring on their finger the ring made of gold, basically a metal that’s found in certain places on the earth, and sporting on it a glistening rock, that has been chiseled and faceted in a particular way.

And they’re very proud of the gold ring and the rock because somebody gave that to them with the promise of a lifetime of service to their consciousness state. And that’s suddenly become a very precious rock and a chunk of metal that was lying in the ground.

To what extent are we able to find the gold and the diamond quality in everything around us? Well, to the extent that our consciousness allows it to be so.

[00:45:54] Disgusting

When we have that kind of life where we treasure everything that’s around us… next time you pick up a piece of litter, don’t look down at it disparagingly, and screwing up your nose and making funny noises and screwing up your lips and everything, because what you’re doing by creating a disgusted consciousness state, as you are projecting disgust into the object that you’re holding in your hand, that was once upon a time some little child’s treasured bag of potato chips that they absolutely loved, and their little fat chubby fingers were holding the potato chips bag, so excited that auntie managed to break the rules a little and sneak a bag of potato chips into the little chubby fingers of the little cherub.

And so if we’re picking it up and we project into it, “Ooh. Disgusting. Ooh.” Make little things with our mouth, “Ooh,” crinkle up our nose, and all of that.

[00:46:58] Make the World We Want to Make

What kind of surroundings, what are we creating in our surroundings? What we need to do is to make the world that we want to make. We want to maximize the potential of any experience. We want to maximize the potential of any experience.

If we have inside of our range a feeling of being disgusted, then to some extent, while we have that vibratory repertoire, that aspect of being disgusted, we’re capable of creating a disgusting world.

Why would we do that? We need to create the world in which we want to live. We need to have the capacity to see beyond the immediate. To be able to see beyond the immediate, to the entire history of a thing, the whole history of it. And we wish to culture this, and if we wish to culture it, then we will start culturing it.

All we have to do is change our mind about what kind of surroundings we wish to create around us. And certain environments that we allow to rise to the Divine then we celebrate the divinity of those environments, but we’re also on a quest to be able to breathe Prana Pratishtha into everything with which we come in contact.

[00:48:31] Culturing Our Environment

We want to find what is the repertoire given to that particular bit of geometry, that bit of architecture, whatever it may be, an old potato chips bag or something? What is the repertoire of consciousness that’s been given to that fold, folding, folding over again, and again of Unified Field quality, to that object?

Let me discover what his capability is rather than projecting onto it something that is from my lowest level of appreciation, of no appreciation perhaps. And so we will be able then to create a world that is sacred, the sacred world around us.

And this is the urgent need of the time; the failure to be able to actually experience the world as an animate, sentient collection of forms and phenomena is what’s creating all the problems in the world right now.

The lack of ability to respect and take delight in the entire range of all forms and phenomena is that lack of capability, that lack of enlivening that is the baseline of all the problems in the world today, every problem without exception.

And so, we want to be meditators who practice culturing our environment. Culturing it, meaning awaken in all forms and phenomena, our own highest state of consciousness. This is our great wish and this is the state of consciousness we want to share with the whole world and we want to do that soon rather than later.

Jai Guru Deva.

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