Local and Cosmic

Local and Cosmic

Cosmic tile by Johan Hidding
Cosmic tile by Johan Hidding

For most, there is a big difference between what we’re experiencing and what consciousness is experiencing through us. When we’re identified with the mind and person, our vantage point is through that lens. Even though consciousness enables all experience, when we’re identified with a local person, we’re confined to that content and mechanism.

Yet consciousness itself doesn’t have that filter. So we can suffer even when our true nature is benefiting from the experience.

For example, in Unity stage, consciousness is increasingly comprehensive. Whatever we put our attention on, we recognize ourselves as. For example, we put our attention on a cat, bird, or tree and experience what it is to be that being. However, as consciousness, our experience is not the same as the occupant who is identified with the content of their experience.

In another example, I’ve experienced the Self wake up to itself through another person a number of times. (When you are that Self, another aspect of you is waking up so it’s shared.) However: did they recognize the shift? Sometimes yes, sometimes they’re uncertain, and sometimes no. Yet, at some point, the person will dissolve enough that they will recognize it. Then the awakening becomes abiding.

The distinction between the local and cosmic perspectives becomes less and less as we climb the stages. And we become able to shift between the koshas (layers) as easily as shifting focus.

In this curious way, we’re already awake. It’s only for the local to see through the fog of identification to discover its true nature as cosmic. Thou art That.

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      1. Hi Steve
        To be clear, it’s not the me that wakes up. We wake up From the me. In a similar way, later stages are not something we do but rather allow.

        Key is:
        – knowing the stages are there
        – understanding to support the shift so it’s smooth.

        In general, Unity unfolds in stages of unification where all the layers of experience are gradually integrated into one wholeness in consciousness. Consciousness comes to know itself fully. At a certain point, we transcend consciousness into Brahman, then Brahman can recognize itself.

        The process is largely one of the lived experience. There can be a Refined Unity stage, God Realization, dissolution of the core identity, recognition of the totality of consciousness globally and at every point, and so forth. The time for the process varies very widely.

        If you use the search tool or Key Posts under References, you can find articles discussing each of these.

  1. Jim

    David, can you clarify the statement, “… we can suffer even when our true nature is benefiting from the experience”? What is the relationship between suffering and our true nature, and how does our true nature benefit in an experience of suffering?

  2. Hi Jim
    Ah, I can see how that statement may not be clear.
    The person, identified with their experiences and taking them personally, resists or grasps at what is arising, leading to suffering.

    And yet at the same time, our true nature is simply experiencing the same thing. It’s not identified with the content and is not suffering.

    For example, we overdo and the body gets depleted, weakening the immune system. We catch a cold. The body works to restore balance and heal.

    Consciousness will simply observe this process unfolding and recognize the natural mechanisms restoring balance. What is needed will arise and complete the process.

    An identified person, on the other hand, may take it personally, get into a drama about blame and guilt, feel disappointed about not being able to see friends, worry about taking a day off work, and so on and on. That stress can actually interfere with healing, extending the illness.

    Our true nature doesn’t benefit from suffering. Suffering is the result of identification and a resistance to what is arising. True nature is the flow of what is arising so there is no resistance to itself.

    Explored this more in articles like this:

  3. Jim

    “… our true nature is benefiting from the experience….”

    This dialogue has caused me to shift my perspective a bit, in order to accommodate True Nature as an interactive experiencer. If this understanding is correct, it lends a new dimension to the silent witness, which I have thought of as more of a static being. It makes sense. I just hadn’t reflected on it until now. I reckon that, as true nature, consciousness — the experiencer — is interacting with itself.

    1. Hi Jim
      Yes, the witness is a static observer when it arises before and then during Self Realization. However, in Unity stage, the world is also recognized to be that same consciousness. It’s like the silence is swallowed by the liveliness. In that perspective, it’s all consciousness: the experiencer (witness), the experienced (objects of experience), and the process of experience (the mechanics).

      In this way, there is nothing that is not consciousness and all experience arises from, takes place in, and subsides in consciousness. Thou art That.

      Even the identified person is content in consciousness. But the perspective is a distortion and not our true nature, not the reality of what is being experienced.

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