A heightened state of awareness (either through meditation, a near-death experience or a drug induced super-clear mental state) does not occur because I have an increased ability to think, analyze, decipher… It’s the opposite. The heightened state arises when the cognitive activity which has been blaring in my brain, distracting me with scenes, smoke, mirrors is suspended. Without the static, that audio/visual noise of thought, pure consciousness can manifest a state of omniscience.
Meditation brings us out of our ego and takes us “home” in effect by patiently diminishing the combo TV-stage play-radio that otherwise occupies our attention. Focusing on a droning chord or the diminishing ring of a gong, the observer slips closer to thoughtlessness and pure knowing, without a single detail of what that knowledge is. It’s not an experience of knowledge. It’s an experience of completeness, of absolute rest.
A similar thoughtless bliss can be provided by a mind-expanding substance like psilocybin or cannabis. The effect of psychedelic drugs is especially close to godliness. Again, it’s not what the drug empowers the brain to perceive. It somehow disconnects the thought patterns that are my most routine habits. With those quieted, with the static and light show clearing out, I am able to know from my inner knower. The knowledge has always been here, but an intellectual veil had hidden it.
Without the veil I’ve been looking through, I see that there is no longer many confusing things. I can see themes instead of separate objects. Where there were many, now there are a few different themes, and then, at last, only one thing going on in the entire universe. And what is that one thing, Vin Boy? I have no idea. The moment your personal consciousness slips into the ocean of one consciousness, all thoughts are put to rest and life is an experience of homogenized oneness, wordless and without images.
It came freely to my mind one day that there’s a Christian scripture that correlates with the notion that the drug induced nirvana is inferior to the meditative exercise. There was this chap who snuck into a wedding festival. He was in but the stewards nipped him because he wasn’t in proper attire. Oh, you can get in for a glimpse of eternity but you get tossed out into confusion if you cheated your way in. The patient way of earning your invite is to diligently diminish the blathering ego until the feeling of completeness is yours to keep. It takes more commitment than dropping acid so, it has to be better.
Perhaps. It’s been 40 years since a shard of Window Pane opened my eyes temporarily. But that one night with the wizard of a thousand kings changed the direction of my life profoundly. Yes, I snuck into the wedding feast and was thrown out – but I remember! I’m indebted to the wisdom imparted and I’m glad it quickly ended. Actually, it’s hell being in blissful perfection. That was part of the experience too. Fun for a while but after basking in enlightenment, a painful thought kills the mood: What am I going to do for the rest of eternity? Without my friend, Confusion, I’ll be eternally bored. Imagine no more questions – no more quests! No surprises, no adventures. Life would be like the joke you already heard.
So, rejoice in the journey out and in. I take a break from thought and just be. I know nothing, but I know it well. Realizing again who I really am, I can enthusiastically play the role of the actor – a midwife bringing forth into the world of form, that which the indescribable, invisible spirit poured through me. One day, I’ll be invited to the party. Until then, as Geppetto exhorted Pinocchio, “Stay wood, boy. Stay wood!”