[This is the final part of a journal entry that was originally written between October 30th – November 3rd, 1997 (if you’d like to read the entire series, start with Part 1: The Ancient Automobile). You can read what Today Jay has to say about what Yesterday Jay wrote in the Post Script. Enjoy!]
We are all tiny little flecks of one huge consciousness. We can only see one tiny little fleck at a time. These are plain and simple rules, conditions we accept when we choose to experience this space/time experience. What we can influence, and change, is just what little fleck we happen to see,and just how it is that we look at it.
So that is God. Not some stern, omnipotent, punishing father . . . simply a consciousness, or a being, of which we are all a part. God is not male or female, but both . . . without the separation we all deem so necessary simply because it is all we know. Just as humans created books as a convenient learning device, so God created humans; and maleness and femaleness; plants and animals; Heaven and Earth . . . simply as a convenient device for learning and experience.
God sees all we see, feels all we feel, knows everything about us . . . not because he’s looking over our shoulder, giving us good grades and bad grades. God is us, we are God. There is no separation but in our minds, and our minds are what dies when we die.
I once encountered a nice phrase summing this all up quite nicely. It said, “Your life is your gift from God. What you do with it is your gift to him.” How very true. We are given life, and free will. We can be anything we care to be, do anything we care to do. Love ourselves, hate ourselves, cage ourselves, release ourselves . . . anything. No matter what you do, you are experiencing something unique, in some way, and that is an experience. That experience, however you see it, is your contribution to the collective consciousness. If you must, God.
Even if you read this whole entry without the self-mocking commentary, there’s a serious lack of cohesion. Of course, I didn’t write this with the intention of publicly critiquing it later. And yet here we are, with a bunch of words strung together to arrive somewhere at the strangely ordered combination of “So that’s God”.
I have travelled many places, learned many things and met many people in the years since I wrote these journals. In my better moments I have had some interesting and lengthy descriptions of God or Life pour from my mouth or my pencil; in my best moments, I tend to answer any questions about what God is to me with a smile and a shrug.
My worst moments were poured forever into these journals, and the answers that I found to the questions that I asked back then have stood the test of time while continuing to evolve. It’s great fun to take good-natured jabs at Yesterday Jay, but he’s the one that put so many screaming internal voices to rest within me that make me able to give that smiling shrug. The fact of the matter is, there’s no more of an end to the God conversation than there is a limit to the places we can go and the things we can learn and the people we can meet. There never will be, as far as I’m concerned, and thank God for that.
I still like that phrase: “Life is your gift from God; what you do with it is your gift to Him.” It doesn’t bother me when it echoes in the quiet private recesses of my mind, since I am a dude and I tend to connect and identify more easily with the masculine side of things. It sounds a little sexist now that I think about it, but I didn’t make the saying up; I just like it. As per usual, I would suggest modifying the saying to fit the individual’s preferences rather than disregarding its wisdom altogether.
That means that it’s time for a callback. I mentioned in the part one commentary that my current views on creation can be easily explained by adding a tremendous amount of love to the mechanized world described in the first Matrix movie. Perhaps one day we’ll explore what I mean by that a little more thoroughly, but today I would like to write instead about deliberately plugging in to that “Matrix”.
Consciousness is an interesting thing. Many people might separate consciousness into two categories for their own personal use and definition, and those two categories would be asleep and awake. There are endless categories of consciousness beyond those two that we could explore, but I only want to add one to the conversation at this point.
Meditation is as easy or difficult to understand and practice as the practitioner wishes it to be. If we see the mind as a computer within a computer network cloud, then meditation is defragmenting. It doesn’t just defrag the mind, though; meditation deliberately plugs you into the matrix (use the movie analogy or just add “of consciousness”, you choose) in a different way. Meditation gets the fear out of both being awake and going to sleep by revealing that the programmer is you. Do it enough, and you get to be “plugged in” all the time, downloading endless bytes of what built the whole thing in the first place: Love. God, if you will.
There’s the argument that often comes up that “running is my meditation”, “yoga is my meditation”, “petting my dog is my meditation”. Those are great opportunities to point out that we use different words for different activities because they are actually different. Meditation is an umbrella term, but the exercise umbrella is a different umbrella altogether. Running and what most Americans call yoga, which falls under a different umbrella and is actually hatha yoga, are exercise. Kriya yoga is meditation; if you say yoga is your meditation, and you mean kriya yoga, carry on.
I love to pet my dog. I love to pet my girlfriend’s dog. It releases chemicals in my body and my brain that I find pleasurable, and I am grateful to be without children while still getting the same chemicals as parents do. It’s not meditation, though. It’s me petting my dog.
An outward description of meditation is pretty boring, although breathing and visualizing and posing can again be as complicated as the practitioner wishes. I don’t want to go on too much about it; I understand that those who do it already value it, and those who don’t can’t get it without doing it. It is the most valuable tool in my toolbox, the biggest reason I am able to do whatever things I am able to do. It’s the best way I have found to unplug myself from my concocted trauma while at the same time plugging me into a special hight octane fuel. I never would have tried meditation if I hadn’t realized that pretty much all my heroes and models practiced it in some form at some point. I was not surprised when I found out that mystics and philosophers generally meditate, but I was surprised to find out that many wealthy folks do as well.
I shouldn’t have been surprised, of course. Growing their spiritual wealth is as important to truly wealthy people as growing their financial wealth. I went from reading books on realizing your spiritual potential to reading books on realizing your financial potential only to realize they all said the same things. It was kind of wonderful to realize that many self-made millionaires looked for indispensable tools to ensure their success and found meditation. It’s confirmation of what the greatest among us have been saying all along: get clear enough, and you can do or have or be anything you want.
Many of us have an inner critic. I don’t like to mince words, so I call mine my inner asshole. You can show my inner asshole a vision of paradise, and he’ll show you a flaw. He comes in very handy when I’m editing, or building something that will stand in my life for a long time. He is never satisfied until he sees his criticisms met with solutions, and even then he just moves on to the next problem he sees. He is tireless and unforgiving, and I love him for not letting me rest until I’ve done my best.
The inner critic can be a crazed rhino tearing up everything in its path, or it can be a schooled surgeon that cuts away unhealthy flesh. There is great power in one, and great skill in the other; there is great beauty in both. Even the most unconscious among us is at the pinnacle of some personal evolution, as the most wise among us has room yet to grow. We all came from the same place to the same place on our way to the same place . . . all without ever leaving home. God, if you will.