It seems in the peeling off of the layers of BS we have been taught, there are some very “resistant layers”…. not only in my mind, but I can see, also in other persons who were brought up in the same home/church culture I was brought up in…… It is mostly because of that, that this process is still writhing around in my mind…. it almost seems like being released from being imprisoned for a lifetime…..
(I was reading some humanism literature, and found that what I have come to believe doesn’t fit there either…… the only home is in Buddhism so far …..)
-There is one “substance” at the base of everything.
-As we see “awareness” arising “unbidden” in our world of biology (living solid forms), it seems this awareness is a “characteristic” of the original substance.
– it seems that this awareness itself is an “automatic” function of the original substance
-it seems awareness is “built into” the base biological system or “original substance” as a characteristic, and produces (Becomes visible or manifests) itself as soon as the biological system is complex enough to “support” it.
-While humans seem to have the ability to experience this connectedness, their brain can also block out this connectedness, to function in the dualistic world. In doing so, humans can fall into darkness. (my explanation of the nature of evil)
-In humans, when the connectedness is ignored, or misunderstood, it can create a sense of being an “orphan”….. which most folks experience at one time or another…..
-On the other hand, when the connectedness is nurtured, the human can experience and “participate” in the connectedness.
-How does this experience of connectedness occur?
-Humans get short “bursts” of the feeling of oneness at various times in their lives, but there is no “structure” there to maintain it. (Maslows peak experiences)…. and our camp meeting experiences….
-Zazen is one practice which “develops” this structure to maintain this oneness. (Maslows plateau experience… the highest form of development in his theory)
– Zazen might be said to be a practice or preparation for this sustained oneness….. (it has felt to me like “oneness is waiting there for anyone who has prepared properly.”) there are no rules, just need persistence.
– How are we connected into the original substance?
– It seems we are all connected to the original substance, and it is through THAT connection that we are connected to other things in the physical solid form world…… if that were the case, then it would explain why we cannot affect CHANGE directly in this physical solid world, but could affect change through our connection to the original substance……. so it would make sense for us to find our “place” and “method” of practice (or preparation) and dive into that….. in this scenario, it does also not seem so selfish to do so, as we affect change through our connection with the original substance, and not necessarily in our participation in this solid form world.
Strangely enough this whole nonsense came out of struggling with whether or not to formally take the precepts and become a Zen Buddhist…… is it reasonable to connect myself with ONE way of thinking???? But I now realize that I need to be with those of the same “way of thinking”, and practicing something that works for me where I am……. so I am determining to move ahead.
The answer to these questions, have also brought me to the conclusion that most if not all humans need a “solid form” belief system to feel safe ….. (there seems to be no “structure” to hold onto in the original substance, and we feel the need to hold onto something…..) so they require faces to be put on things in order to feel “less orphaned” (a fixed religion, fixed ideology, eternal truths) …… but that real “purity” of practice (not to be confused with morality!!) is related to the “original substance” which has no form. Therefore, any solid form belief system naturally has duality built into it, because its “examples” and “symbols” all have faces on them…. but the root of everything is the original substance, which is “before faces”.
(Having said this is even more interesting after re-reading the preface of “the three pillars of Zen”, which I haven’t opened for so many years)
Buddhism holds this original substance in its “system”, while stopping short of naming it, or putting a face on it….. in fact they are adamant to call it emptiness…. so as not to make a dualistic image come up of it…