Layers of Perspective

Layers of Perspective

Girl on Garda Lake by Guiseppe Milo
Girl on Garda Lake by Guiseppe Milo

The average person expects their view of the world to be accurate and reliable, even if they have doubts about certain aspects.

We need a stable view so we can function in the world. Yet our basic assumptions become the foundation for many further assumptions. We often formed these very early in life, before our intellect developed. The sum of our assumptions becomes the perspective or lens through which we see the world.

When something unexpected happens, we can feel personally threatened, even if the event wasn’t personal. Yet the unexpected is also an opportunity to recognize false assumptions.

There are a variety of forms of what psychology calls cognitive bias. This results in a variety of what I call stories, narratives we tell ourselves about ourselves, others, and the world.

If we stop and listen to the mind, we’ll often notice a variety of stories running at the same time. One rises to dominance, then is replaced by another. Memory, events around us, and purification can shift that emphasis.

Another way to notice is by listening to what we’re telling others. Much of what we give importance to is confirmation narratives, stories that “prove” our position.

All of this illustrates the fundamental lens through which we experience the world. Our subconscious filters out all sensory information it feels irrelevant, leaving the conscious mind to notice what the subconscious feels is important.

Usually, the conscious mind is a few steps behind events, yet it often claims to be driving it.

For example, when you’re considering buying a car, you suddenly notice similar cars around you. Oddly, we may take this as confirmation of our choice.

A more prominent example is the materialist paradigm that dominates our culture. It sees only what we can sense and measure as real. Vast swaths of reality are ignored or seen as anomalies. Science prides itself on objectivity, yet generally doesn’t recognize this paradigm, insisting materialism is reality.

All of this becomes much more apparent when we witness or shift into observer consciousness, a step back from being contained in our experiences. We are then uninvolved, watching. It’s as if we “wake up” from the world and begin to recognize our true nature as the experiencer. This may happen with clear Self Realization or prior to.

With stepping back from our mind, the stories running become much more obvious, along with reactivity and assumptions. Some are surprisingly foolish and primitive. Once seen, they are seen through and discarded, no longer believed.

Our narratives are built up in layers. It often takes events to bring them to the surface to be seen. Thus, they’re cleared over time. It’s a common experience to do a lot of unpacking after awakening (Self Realization), then the mind becomes much more settled.

Yet some can be deeply embedded. Our mothers energetic modelling cultured them even in the womb. Then we added stories to support our feelings as we grew up.

Sometimes, life experiences added to our impressions. Sometimes, they steered them in a different direction. And occasionally, insights helped us see through them without a witness. Then we let go of stories that didn’t serve us. That’s part of growing up.

Refined perception is the other major influence on perspective. As the perception refines and we begin to experience more subtle levels between consciousness and the surface experience, new vistas unfold which can markedly change our perspective of the world and how it works.

Depending on prior life development, practices, and dominant laws of nature, refinement can unfold early on or well after awakening.

Unfoldment also depends on our dominant sense. We may explore through sight, sound, or somatically, through feel.

At first, other layers of being may feel like other places or lokas (sometimes people say other “dimensions” but that’s very misleading).

Then, they can come to feel like floors in a building. Then, the building as a whole with layers in it. And then as a simultaneous reality in concurrent space. It’s all present here.

All of this is distinct from the dominant guna. It can seem more or less illusory, for example. But we require sufficient sattva for the refinement to unfold in detail.

We can be clearer on some levels than on others. This can be due to where sattva is cleaner but also our laws of nature, and what we feed with our attention (our interest). A healer is naturally more drawn to purification processes. A consciousness nerd to the mechanics of consciousness.

With progressive unfolding, we come to recognize that perspective is an evolving thing. Our view of reality changes as we grow. With a little blessing, it will be a progressive expansion of ever-grander vistas.

Last Updated on May 2, 2021 by Davidya

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 15

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.


  1. Mary Dungan

    I can relate to what you said about healers. “Purification,” which I see as part of the unpacking process, makes a lot of sense to me.

    I have a pal who’s a statistician. “Consciousness nerd” very aptly describes him.

    1. Very much, Guru. The shifts themselves are just the starting point. They’re not a goal but rather a platform from which to experience life. Refinement is essentially endless, particularly in the current time. Also, it’s more our relationship with consciousness that continues to evolve as we embody more and more.

      And yes, living enlightenment in a human form inherently means some limitation, some “faint remains of ignorance.” I talked about this in some detail here:

      Big difference between faint remains and being lost in our perceptions as most are.

    1. Hi Guru
      You have to keep in mind perspective and the stage of development we’re experiencing from. Puberty is meaningless to a toddler, for example. What does unborn mean to someone who lives in the field of change?

      No thing is born in the unborn. That’s why it’s called unborn. One way its described is as nirguna and saguna brahm. (without and with qualities.) It is the curious experience in Brahman stage that nothing was every created and yet here it is in perception. This doesn’t mean the world is an illusion, as that is still something created. It means it’s an appearance of consciousness arising from memory. It’s like a musing from God that never became but appears to.

      The trick with Brahman is it’s totally inclusive. Nirguna and saguna are not a duality. They’re a totality. It’s all together: the world, both created and uncreated.

      Comparing this to your experience or trying to work this out with the mind will just lead to misunderstanding. Better to recognize this is a future perspective that will arise at some point. There’s no point adopting a philosophy that doesn’t suit our reality. We have a life we need to care for. Conceiving of it as nonexistent isn’t helpful.

      Awakening to our deeper nature comes first. Then oneness with the world. And then Brahman. Each brings their own perspective of reality. And they may be punctuated with refined perception. And then, after all the above is Divinity. As such, I would not say unborn is the ultimate.

  2. Guru

    Are shunyata and Brahman the same? Where being and nonbeing stand between shunyata and Brahman. You are the one who can answer this. I don’t want to die without knowing this. kindly respond.

    1. Hi Guru
      No. Shunyata is a Buddhist term, generally meaning emptiness. This is a quality of consciousness empty of content and silent. If we don’t practice techniques that refine, we’re more likely to experience consciousness as empty rather than full, although emptiness can be a step in the process in any case.

      Brahman is beyond qualities like emptiness and fullness, beyond the dynamics of consciousness, and beyond being and nonbeing. Beyond consciousness, it is beyond the mind’s grasp as it’s not an experience. Yet Brahman can know Brahman.

      The two are sometimes confused as Shunyata may be described as an emptying out of all form and qualities. We can taste this in a clear samadhi. However, it is still a space in consciousness. It is still interacting consciousness, even if the dynamics are not yet recognized. Brahman is beyond even this.

      While Buddha spoke to higher stages, that understanding has generally been lost in modern Buddhism. They talk of a single awakening, generally framed as an ego death into emptiness. They also talk of advanced stages of embodiment but not how we evolve from the first to the second. Zen has some recognition of higher stages but I’ve not seen it describe Brahman.

      Many traditions have lost this understanding because the means were lost. Without the means, enlightenment became rare and the understanding faded. The teaching becomes concepts, then belief and dogma. This has happened throughout the ages. Then a revival arises as in the current time. The means are restored, then a wave of awakening takes place. Then understanding is restored.

      Knowing this distinction by the mind may make the mind happy but that will make little difference after you die. What will make a difference is realizing this directly, not collecting concepts. 🙂

  3. Guru

    Thanks. Yes you are right I collect concepts. I have access to you who can clear my understanding. Happy that you discuss this for seekers who are lost in jungle of spirituality. Without Guru, aspirant can get stuck. You are light and I have to be light!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest