Recently, I’ve spoken about such matters as fatigue, diet, and sex on a spiritual path. The overriding message is of course moderation in all things worldly.

But there’s an aspect of this I think it’s worth clarifying. The difference between Self and Perception.

Eating wrong food or too much or too little, excess physical activity, illness, injury… all of these affect our nervous system. As our nervous system is the vehicle for perception, compromising or exhausting the nervous system will reduce the quality of perception. Typically, it will be foggier but it can be compromised in various ways.

This will thus affect our experiences like subtle perception, the heart and feelings, receptivity, intuition, the intellect, and so forth. This is the value of taking care of our physical resources.

However, one thing it will NOT affect is the Self. The silent Self, the observer, is beyond perception, the nervous system, illness, or any other effects of the world. It infuses the world but is not of it. It is unchanging, unlimited, and eternal. This is why some call it Presence.

This means that when Self is fully awake through us, when Self realization dawns, you can never go back. (laughs) It is unassailable and unaffected by anything. Self remains, whether the body be ill, asleep, exhausted, impaired… whatever. It does not matter. The Self remains and overshadows any transitory experience, any perception. It is the rock.

Because love and bliss are qualities of Self, they too remain but their expression may be muted by the condition of the nervous system. So yes, it is possible to be surprisingly happy when you’re sick in bed.

The Self is literally immortal. This means that it is unaffected even by death. This is why they say that once you awake, there is no further lives. You’ve transcended that. Some further experiences may be needed to tidy things up and finish the purpose. But the need for a vehicle to awaken is complete.

However, as I’ve said many times here, that is not the goal. It is only the beginning. Yep – there’s better than unending bliss and immortality. (laughs) The true experience of reality is still a little further down the road. With Self realization, we’re still experiencing the world as other. We need to bring that into the fold too. Not to mention all the other aspects of Self yet to awaken – the people still in shadow.

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  1. greg


    Greetings and salutations. First I digress: I googled the first couple of lines ofthe Grace you posted on this sight, which I was very happy to find, and then I started reading a few of the posts. Interesting site/blog and lots of interesting insights. I think I know–in a small way–where you’re coming from.

    Above and in a few other posts you mentioned how important perception is to you. I also think it’s an important component in growth, perhaps the most influential and recognizable portion of it as reality reveals itself to the self.

    I’d like to explain an old mental phenomena of the growth process as I see it that I sort of discovered a number of years back while reading Plato. It’s easiest to explain within the confines of a pun: when a person first hears a pun, a joke or a word phrase with a double meaning, one hears the singular word or phrase and then usually understands one meaning (which exists in memory) of that word or phrase. Then the mind, or more specifically waking state consciousness, then grasps the second meaning of the word or phrase, sort of drawing (or finding?) first one definition out of memory and then another. When both definitions are in close proximity inside one’s consciousness, there is oftentimes a sort of ‘ah ha’ experience of recognized cognition–a re-cognition, or synthesis of the word and both of its meanings as a new singularity. With this experience oftentimes comes a small bit of bliss or happiness as consciousness has expanded to grasp a slightly greater whole than it grasped before, i.e. perception expands momentarily, consciousness expands momentarily.

    Of course, as I previously mentioned, the pun experience is a waking state phenomenon, a sort of lower level experience of bliss and discreet expanding cognition and, also, perhaps a sort of shadow form of higher levels of perception and experience that can dovetail into higher states of consciousness. Perhaps?

    Anyway, thanks for the Grace and blog.


  2. Davidya

    Hi Greg
    Welcome and thanks for the feedback. I tried to find it on Google myself but had to dig through old files to confirm the wording.

    Perception is indeed the key for many. It’s the path of the karma yogi, somewhat dominant in the west.

    Fascinating description of a joke. I’ve heard Sanskrit described as a multi-layered language. It can be heard on several levels which has the effect of integrating them. This can create greater openness or sync with wholeness, leading to insight. When we touch reality, the surface is bliss.

    There’s an old saying – as above, so below. The processes of waking state are all a lesser form of higher values. A mirror or shadow. There’s greater complexity and distortion and the appearance is different but the fundamentals repeat over and over on each level.

  3. greg


    Thanks for responding.

    Just say ‘stop’ if you get sick of my blathering. I reread what I wrote to you and thought I did a poor job of explaining puns, perhaps things were too compressed. I haven’t thought about puns and stuff in quite some time. My approach to reaching for enlightenment has always had a strong intellectual component. And even more so, it has a rather quantitative aspect to it (which differs somewhat from what I see as your qualitative approach): I sort of look for all the components swirling around in my head, identify them as best I can, then seek out the relations between and among the parts. IMO, this is how Plato operated . . . And, also, it is how I attempt to act on the that most important phrase “know thy self.”

    Expanding on puns a bit: In a very unenlightened sense we are all creatures bound by time and space while in the waking state of consciousness. Timewise, we sort of exist on a linear string, mostly living in a here and now but also making brief forays into the past and future as we recollect things or project our heres and nows into the future as we search for the past or search for the future thru our creativity . When we go into the past or the future we really are attempting to put our here and now into a different space and time–and in the process expand comprehension. I believe during such acts I am attempting to expand my consciousness a bit.–I hope.

    To overly simplify language a bit here, public, objective words and phrases each have their own discreet bearer or meaning. Most of these definitions or bearers we learn thru discourse and/or in school. Some words have double or even triple meanings, different meanings inside different contexts, small points inside larger contexts. We learn these relationships in our social discourses and also inside our own thoughts.

    In these processes of learning, of expanding our knowledge base, we are, in a very real sense, accumulating vast incremental bits and pieces of real Being. What else would we be doing? And we are doing it with our own personal consciousness–the self finding the Self.

    So, when we hear a bit of a word play, a pun, and also catch its double meanings in the immediate aftermath, we, for a brief moment in time and space, capture with our own consciousness a larger than normal synthesis–or gob– of consciousness. It’s a bit like a snake digesting an animal: for a very brief moment in time, a here and now, we have an expanded consciousness, captured momentarily a slightly larger gob of temporal and spacial infinity while in our waking state, while hearing the pun. This is a good thing when done in moderation. Einstein would approve–would be my guess.

    You said:

    It [jokes] can be heard on several levels which has the effect of integrating them. This can create greater openness or sync with wholeness, leading to insight. When we touch reality, the surface is bliss.

    To my mind, when we are having a little ’ah ha’ experience, such as after hearing a pun, the bit of happiness–or bliss–that we experience is just the reverberation of consciousness as it begins to enter the human intellect, mind, emotions and body. Waking state bliss is just the emination of expanded/expanding consciousness, the cognition of the interplay of Being, a capturing of it with individual consciousness. It is consciousness playing on the grosser parts of human existence.

    The bliss or bit of happiness we experience is at a cruder level than the experience of pure consciousness, it has already entered our minds and bodies. It is now easier to discern; it has entered our world. It is easier to capture with cognition its cruder aspects. Bliss is the outward portion of consciousness, or as you said the surface.

    This, to my mind, is why it is so important to nurture our bodies and minds. To simultaneously strengthen them and also make them subtler so that larger quantities of consciousness, and infinity can be captured and held permanently.

    We tend, at times, to think that enlightenment is some far, far away thing in both time and space. But the seeds of it are already growing inside of us. We just need to reveal it to our selves.

  4. Davidya

    Hi Greg
    It’s not always easy to cover ideas in a comment. Even in a blog post. No need to apologize. I got the idea and you’re right. It’s a good point. Heard a teacher recently say that everything we experience is just the movement of bliss. But our resistance and stories get in the way of the experience of that, so we experience it as other emotions.

    As you observe, humor can cause that to enter into our awareness. An opening. My response was a little dry – I have a mild cold at the moment. It doesn’t stop the joy but it mutes it’s expression.(laughs)

    I’d actually disagree on the comment about being mostly in the here and now. The mind is not present – it is either in the past of memories or in the future, planning. If your experience is of being mostly in the present, then you are mostly not in mind. You are stepping past plain waking state. Or you are thinking you are being present, not recognizing that a thought about it is already after the fact and ergo a memory, in the past. (laughs)

    I agree that our experiences, even of the past and future, expand and refine consciousness. That’s why we’re here, as vehicles for consciousness to know itself.

    The whole question of meaning is huge, with subtle variation between people. As a friend likes to say, words are a symbol for a concept, so are twice removed from reality.

    As we gather information and accumulate, I would not agree we’re gathering pieces of Being. We’re conceptually ordering what is Being, but a lot of that tends to be a construct that hides Being. It is the outward stroke of Being whereas waking is the inward stroke, out of the construct. Ego likes to make its ideas of the world important but relative to higher truth, it’s largely meaningless. You have to let go of the constructs to transcend them.

    Now, that’s not to say a new synthesis, a bright idea does not expand consciousness. It does. But the mind then comes in and adds it to the construct.

    When you quoted me, I think we were saying the same thing. Except that there really is no “individual” consciousness. “capture” is the egos way of grasping and making it its own. The Aha is a reverberation loud enough to come through or a moment when we allow and the ego is forgotten, just like it is every night in deep sleep.

    Yes, the seeds of enlightenment are growing in all of us. We just need to allow it to reveal itself to itself. The me does not get enlightened as there is no me. (laughs)

  5. greg

    Hi again:

    Anyway, very nice talking to you. I thought you might be interested in my very small experience of how consciousness expands and causes perception to change. Or visa versa in that perception changes and then causes consciousness to change. I’m still a bit unsure as to which one precedes the other–or whether they are just an un-individuated whole that my ego selectively differentiates in time to serve my own purpose ;^) At some levels cause and effect starts to lose boundaries.

    I sort of need the quantitative, component, friction I think really exists to help move to successive levels. I once heard that math is a rigid form of communication with sharp boundaries and distinct relationships, while words, human language, is slippery and most flexible (it is why mantras work so well), helping one capture different portions of reality in a natural fashion: the words and meanings of those words change as consciousness changes. Which comes first?

    Anyway, thanks for the blog. I hope to visit once in a while.


  6. Davidya

    Hi Greg
    hmm – apparently something didn’t get communicated here. I did understand what you were saying and related it to my experience. As I mentioned, yours was a fascinating observation and I enjoyed the discourse.

    Sometimes a bit of a disconnect can arise in such conversations due to different modes. For me, there is no person, so I respond to the we, to the Self. If there is a me there looking for a specific response, it can fail. And certainly from this side, if the awareness is not clear, I can miss things.

    As to which one precedes – it’s 2 way or both. We’re here to perceive for consciousness. A change in consciousness changes perception and perceptions themselves change consciousness. This is the value of a practice. By changing the vessel, we refine consciousness itself.

    You’ll find several posts here on cause and effect. There’s a layer (or 3) of false causality over whats actually going on.

    You’ll also find it’s the mind that needs the quantitative. You are more than that.

    Friction exists to give us a push, yes. But there is also the friction I would call resistance that resists the push. Thats what we have to learn to release.

    Math is very distinct, yes. The fundamental structure of existence is too. The underlying intelligence. If you explore ideas of things like Bucky Fuller or sacred geometry, you’ll find it is describing that structure onto which form is mapped.

    Mantras are powerful, less because they are words and more because proper ones are an expression of fundamental qualities. The universe arises out of vibration that leads to field effects that map on the structure above. Mantras are words that match the vibrational qualities of becoming. This harmonizes us with those qualities and allows us to step close to the source.

    Which comes first? The sound. then the math, then the meaning.

    See you soon.

  7. greg


    Again, thanks for such a wonderful blog. It was very interesting to puruse. My only intent after finding it was to pass on my tidbit about puns and perception–a tickle of sorts–and visit now and again to view a topic or two. Have fun. Back into silent mode. JGD


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