Saturday, December 14, 2013

14 December 2013

Being in two states at once
how to step over the threshold

Dead to the world

I woke for good this morning about six AM. I had been dreaming. It was one of those last dream cycle dreams where your unconscious has already spent the night going over events of the previous day, had given you all sorts of impossible tasks to complete many times over while you finally get an understanding of what ever you have been trying to work out, until the last segment of dreams.

Often these are fanciful, like having discovered the secret to levitation on a moderate scale. It occurs slowly and you only float inches above the ground. It takes along time to get there so you are not going to make any great escapes from bad guys or anything like that. Or dreaming of having learned how to move like kangaroos do with great leaping bounds, often twenty to thirty feet at a time. You try to tell everyone but no one is interested. In fact they act as if they can't see or hear you. Here you are, busting with this knowledge that could change humanity – and nobody seems capable of paying attention. One time I dreamt that I had created a beautiful series of photographs that depicted infinite wonders of the universe. In that way that one can learn more from a picture than any amount of words, the way an image slips right past the defenses and patterned way of prior understandings that dupe us into believing that we know when we really don't. Our prior knowledge that keeps us from understanding any further. It is often based on that which everyone in our culture knows and is propagated through words. I couldn't get anyone to look at the pictures, it was like they were all ignoring on purpose by some secret command.

In this way we as individuals are effectively kept within the range of the group as a whole. No cowboys here thank you, iconoclasts need not stick around, we know all we want to know, just keep on moving or be the same as the rest of us.. These dreams are not only highly visual but are accompanied by a felt sense that is stronger than any other type of dream. Much like the theater organist would play a score to accompany the old silent movies to enhance the mood being portrayed on the screen, this felt sense added a fuller dimension to the dream. So full, in fact, that it seemed there had been a reversal of parts to the dream, as if that theater organist had become somewhat overzealous and was making his part more present than the film images.

Puppy dreams

These end of sleep cycle dreams were mostly about the felt sensation than the images. In fact there are many times in the progression of these dreams where the feeling continues on and the images have temporarily ceased. Sometimes the images of the dream fitfully develop, as if the images were being made up to fit the feelings. It becomes very clear at this point that the feeling is the most important part, that the visuals are what we create to augment and shape the felt sensation.

This seems to run counter to the science we have all been subjected to, that we are visual beings, our brain uses most of its massive amount of neuronal capacity to process vision. Or that the brain cannot tell the difference between an imagined event and seeing the real activity. Athletes use this visualization technique all the time. We all do this all the time without realizing it. Our brain is encased inside of a dark cranium of bone with only sensual peepholes open to the outside. From these bits of information we construe the world in which we live, develop a pattern of understanding and expectations about that world, and then boldly strike out to be in this world of which we don't have any more sense of the realness of it than our capacity for confabulation and delusion can carry us onward. No wonder society changes, as Max Planck once said of science “One funeral at a time”. We are all blind. Some of us leap to the fore exclaiming that they have it sussed. The concept of memes comes into operation here as people don the mantle of scientific explorer and explainer, or moral interpreter, the image presented becomes more and more accepted until the cumulative weight overtakes even the strongest and most resilient. A culturally accepted understanding prevails which if we buy into we gain certain behavioral privileges. Like earning a driving license, graduating from an educational program, obtaining a job – which in turn bestows even more benefits.

The mass delusion is ubiquitous, rampant, and self perpetuating. It is everywhere and is relentless in the way that memes can do, like viruses they take over our body (through the mind) to ensure that the illusion is maintained. There is no mastermind behind this, no bad guy onto which we can lay blame for this condition. It is us. We have allowed ourselves to become infected with this malady. Some of us play the part of social administrators keeping everyone in line, others of us play the deviant finding ways to push the envelope of acceptance and yet remain within the fold.

If we try to confront this situation solely with the mind, we are only binding ourselves deeper into the morass. Sort of like trying to dug a hole in a large body of water using a shovel, the chore is going about the task using the wrong tools. So trusting on the mind and its ability to manipulate logic that we fail to recognize a solution even as it is knocking on our forehead. It is there but we don't see it.

Along comes Candace Pert and her research, very scientifically oriented, without flaw. 
Candace Pert

Everything is according to standard operating procedure, and yet her discoveries immediately answered some physiological questions but also the implications could not be stopped there. Through her work we have been able to see that our bodies are a repository for our unconscious, that thought and electrochemical neural messages are not the only manner the body is able to move information. The body also can very quickly know what is going on at the other end by chemical messages alone, nerves are not involved. We often sense this as a felt sensation. This began an investigation into how our felt sensations were more than mere emotional enhancements, like spice is to food. Feelings are real conveyors of information, they are of value, they are trying to inform us of something. The old time worn idea that they are poor imitators of valuable data has now passed. But as Planck's comment mentioned above cites, don't expect any changes anytime soon.

So this morning I awoke with this very interesting dream, not only echoing with fecundity in my mind but I realize that I was dreaming lucidly before I awoke. The dream had a continued sense that transited from the sleeping state into the waking state. The transition was seamless in that was not interrupted as dreams usually seem to be, rather the dream took on the added component of an experience that spanned two different states of being. It lent itself to the knowing that we are awareness that can exist in many states. Our responses depend on which is the present state in which we place ourselves.

This leads to another understanding, that we can bring ourselves forth into another state , by bringing ourselves forward, to step over the threshold, and enter a different realm than one we are familiar with. It is possible to see this often when someone goes beyond what can be attributed to practice as in an athletic event or a series of patterned behaviors. This is not doing the same thing with renewed vigor, it is more like doing the same thing with a renewed self. A different self, much like the older self, the more familiar self, the one that we have become used to with the same old caveats, the fears, the sense of inadequacies, the hopes and dreams – all of the beliefs that we have saddled ourselves with that impede that actualizing of our own true sense. The self we know is often a shadow of our truer self, one which we know is inside of us but often very difficult to bring forth before others. So often we fail and present our smaller self, which can be detected – usually by felt means. Like the world presented in the Flammarion Woodcut, we find ourselves in it but we are vastly different.

Flammarion Woodcut

We know when we are showing forth in one realm or the other. Some of us even know what was holding us back, but to know alone is not enough. That feeling component enters into the mix.

When we are hitting that mark everything seems to be in an expanded state. We tend to know not where our physical boundaries end and find ourselves feeling "connected" with the rest of the world and everything in it.

During this dream I sometimes dreamt that I was interacting with my former wife and for some reason she was actually responding to loving inputs and little acts of adoration in a positive way. Then, like a radio that was failing to hold the station to which it was tuned, she was just off the mark. Acting calculating, judgmental, accusative and suspicious (which more and more grew to be her favored way of acting/being as time went on). Various vignettes of tender moments would pass by my awareness and she would be one sort or the other. The contrast was amazing. Throughout it all I can feel my sense of affection toward her and at the same time feel her response or lack thereof in return. Toward the end of the dream she was settling into being more and more as if she were operating from her head and not her heart, which is just the way the marriage ended up. I woke up with a strong sense of wanting to love and appreciate someone and there was this tremendous feeling of a void in return. That is very disorienting.

Normally it is said that when one gives out love, more returns. The caveat is, the other person has to be in the same relationship at the same level. Otherwise, love pours out and is met with a resounding silence of nothing.

This is how I started up my day and I have been astounded to note that the feeling I get from most of the CENAs that have interacted with me is one of conditional acceptance. There is no sense of love being returned. It would be quite strange except for the fact that this is, sadly, normal in my experience of this place.

I can't help wonder if my wanting to hold the staff in a sense of appreciation and acceptance might be more flavored by the "Stockholm affect" then real altruism? The conditions for Stockholm affect are certainly in place. I am, for all intents and purposes, dependent on the goodwill of the CENA staff to get various things that I need - in the sense of physical needs, food, clothing and shelter. It seems that they are steadfast against showing or allowing any form of altruistic acceptance. I wonder if there is a fear of not being "professional" and that they may find themselves under some kind of administrative reprimand or something. I am not talking about flirting here, or any other physical or lascivious behavior. I'm talking about simple accepting and allowing someone to be who they are. That seems to be next to impossible for just about everybody here.

I often feel like Gulliver in a land populated by merely the shadows of the people who actually could be here, if only they would let themselves.

And so goes another day of supine paradise.

1 comment:

  1. The trouble with being human is ... the human body doesn't come with an instructions manual.

    Your reference to the brain in a closed cranium is good but just as there's limited input sensory devices, so too is there's limited output methods.

    I've long maintained that dreams are loose snippets, rambling pieces... scattered motes bumping into our mental equivalent of a CD player's playback mode.