April 17, 2016 10:41 AM
Usually I’ll be ruminating on something and then snap into a “wait, this is ridiculous to spend all of this mental energy on illusion” sort of realization and it will just happen like that.
When I get caught up in my me-me-me thoughts, I focus on the feel of the contraction/thoughts and visualize pulling them out of my head and dropping them to the ground beside me.
What happens next is what most people call “enlightenment.” The outside world fills the space that was left behind when the me-me-me thoughts were removed and the world and I become one. The Gateless Gate—the felt barrier between the inside world and the outside world—vanishes.
Notice what happened with both Michelle and I: We were focused on interior thoughts (the introspective section of the brain was activated), then we removed the contents of the interior. Because nature abhors a vacuum, the interior space automatically gets “filled” with the outside world.
We didn’t just shift our attention from interior (Me-me-me) to exterior (Squirrel!), we emptied the contents of the interior, which caused the exterior world to fill the space left behind.
The LSD study excited me (in both good and bad ways, but I see the error of the “bad” way now, so it’s all good) because I never put all the pieces together before. I really didn’t care how the “experts” interpreted the results, what excited me were the pieces.
Three key pieces (very simplified, but who cares):
- There is a part of the brain responsible for introspection (the Me-Part)
- There is a part of the brain responsible for interpreting the exterior world (the World-Part)
- There is a perceiver of what these two parts of the brain are putting out (the Witness)
I’ll address the Witness (and my error) in a moment, but the insight I got from the LSD study is this:
- In the “unenlightened” experience, only one of the two brain parts are active at a time: Either the Me-Part or the World-Part.
- In the “enlightened” experience, both parts are active at the same time BUT the Me-Part is empty of content.
And the beauty of this insight is this:
To access the “enlightenment” experience (Emptiness/one-with-all) you simply have to activate the Me-Part of the brain, then remove its contents.
The Me-Part is activated (“Me, me, oh, me how I love you”), then the contents are dropped (“Ahhhh! Argh.” Silence). The Me-Part is active, but it has no contents, which causes a sort of “me” vacuum. The World-Part then naturally activates and perceives the exterior world. But because the Me-Part is still active (but empty), this makes the World FEEL like the “Me” FEELS (the world “fills” the Me-Part of the brain).
Bang! The Gateless Gate vanishes, all self-boundaries drop, and enlightenment—the Emptiness/Vastness/one with everything—is experienced.
Two other posts are just aching to be written because of this conclusion (and I hope they’ll be next): A technique post and a Gateless Gate explanation.
END OF POST.
For those curious where I screwed up earlier…
Where I screwed up earlier
I screwed up when I said previously, “Enlightenment—the Witness—is simply a neurobiological process inside our heads.”
I should have said:
Enlightenment—the feeling of being one with everything—is simply a neurobiological process inside our heads.
Stupid me. I fell for the common Witness Aspect mistake of confusing the perceived with the perceiver (something I’ve criticized other nondual teachers of). The Witness perceives the Oneness, but doesn’t realize initially that he stands apart from it. This unity/separation paradox is resolved with the I AM aspect.
As I’ve said maybe a thousand times before, this is a blog, not a book. Sorry for the misunderstanding.
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