Living among the unconscious

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nanashi
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Living among the unconscious

Post by nanashi » Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:31 pm

I am starting this thread with the intent to focus primarily on interpersonal relationships.

I am interested to understand how others typically deal with situations in which they find themselves immersed amongst deeply unconsicious individuals. In one of ET's teachings, he says to find your inner stillness when dealing with others. Hold others in your awareness and really listen. Then you will find that you are actually seeing yourself in other people AND those who are deeply entrenched within their own egos will begin to change.

As always keeping close to inner spaciousness seems to be the right answer to all situations. I often observe myself getting frusturated with the egos of other human beings. And I know I should allow everything to be as it is, even my own emotions if I can help it. But sometimes it is difficult when you see on multiple occasions the primary cause of pervasive problems stemming from the same source: the ego. When I see dysfunction arise in everyday situations in the workplace for many months, I start sensing resentment in myself towards those who have zero self-awareness; And THEN I realize that because of this felt resentment, that I carry the same source that everyone else carries which causes the same problems that everyone else has, making me the same as everyone else :cry: **smacks his own head**

I enjoy holding onto inner peace, especially in conversations. I always try to make it a daily practice to stay centered and hold back judgement when talking to others. But when I observe the pervasiveness of individual and collective ego, it can be somewhat daunting. How is my own awakening going to influence anyone others? What does it feel like to someone who is unconscious when they converse with someone who is more conscious? These are questions with answers that I can only speculate but would be extremely interested in hearing what others have to share.
Last edited by nanashi on Thu Sep 29, 2011 1:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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alex
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by alex » Wed Sep 28, 2011 1:49 am

As always keeping close to inner spaciousness seems to be the right answer to all situations
I think you got it there. But hey, I know I sure as hell slip up a lot and get sucked into mental stories when I'm interacting with some people. All you can do is just notice this has happened and back to the inner stillness and deep listening.
Often these days when being aware of this inner stillness I become simultaneously aware of the effortless awareness that is the whole, then any 'efforting' regarding listening is let go of and absolute unity is experienced with all. The interaction gets kind of fun then and humour seems to seep into the conversation.

nutrition
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by nutrition » Wed Sep 28, 2011 1:49 pm

Then you will find that you are actually seeing yourself in other people AND those who are deeply entrenched within their own egos will begin to change.

How is my own awakening going to influence anyone others? What does it feel like to someone who is unconscious when they converse with someone who is more conscious?
I have the same questions. I hear it from every spiritual teacher: you chance and the rest will change.
In a course in miracles (ACIM) you are seen as a teacher of god and actually become the light of the world. Your awakening will effect everyone you come in contact with.
How is this manifested in a practical manner can be probably seen with ET's teachings (and the way he divulges them with internet, websites, forums, talks etc..). The people who are touched by his teaching are awakening,but not all of them will.
I guess, since not many of us here on the forum are where ET is, we do not have as much pull on unconscious people. So we do not experience much change in others when they come in contact with us.....
just guessing

bless

blessing

snowheight
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by snowheight » Wed Sep 28, 2011 5:25 pm

nanashi wrote: I should allow everything to be as it is, even my own emotions if I can help it, but sometimes it is difficult when you see, on multiple occasions, where the primary cause of pervasive problems stemming from the same source: the ego. And when I see dysfunction arise in everyday situations in the workplace for many months, I start sensing resentment in myself towards those who have zero self-awareness; And THEN I realize that because of this felt resentment, that I carry the same source that everyone else carries which causes the same problems that everyone else has, making me the same as everyone else :cry: **smacks his own head**
Wouldn't this be just so tremendously hilarious if the perceived implication wasn't so dire?

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Contemplating Ralph's Mooji video on the topic, it finally dawned on me that there is a 2nd meaning other than the one I'd always held in forefront to:

It is better to light a single candle than to curse the darkness.

Heard this when I was very young, and for me it always meant "quit yer' bitchin'.." -- if anything was worth complaining about, it was worth doing something about, and complaining, unlike doing, doesn't result in anything but noise pollution.

But recently it dawned on me that the candle is just a metaphor for the apparent person and lighting it is a metaphor for awakening.

Both interpretations work. The second one is most applicable, however, to the spectacular disaster embodied by the recursive cycle you describe: the mind seems to learn something in the process of awakening and in this how could the obvious day-to-day damage of those who are unconscious not be noticed? ... in the noticing a reaction arises, and wala ... you are asleep again! There is a mirror-image process to this: for some, the onset of inner-peace brings with it corresponding external improvements in life situation (such as lower blood pressure) which taken together are substantial and substantially improve that life situation. This, in turn, leads to a comfortable insulation from some of the factors that resulted in the awakening be begin with and wala ... you are asleep again!

These reactions in and of the mind, they are all opportunities. There are some interesting thought experiments for the mind based on action/non-reaction from stillness but these all wind up snaring themselves into a loop of contradiction in the end ... that said some of them can be powerful. One of these is simply setting an example from stillness in the face of the random wind. For example, a patient, quiet and yet clearly fearless reaction to someone obviously and noisily seeking conflict is a circumstance the mind can get its hooks around.

These ego's, this noise, even the worst of the atrocities, they all arise in the dance, as does our judgments of them. This is all just opportunity.

On a person-to-person basis, one human interaction at a time ... who is this "You" that they keep referring to? Wow, this voice, this source and vector of ideas coming from that mouth (or keyboard) ... it has these assumptions of attachment ... attachment of "mine", attachment of "theirs", attchment of some "other" ... what is the basis for these assumptions?

Take the opportunity reflected in the slings and arrows wielded by those closest to you as a start. To repeat what I said in Ralph's thread, if one of us wakes up, we all wake up.
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.

runstrails
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by runstrails » Wed Sep 28, 2011 8:59 pm

Great post, 'snow.

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nanashi
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by nanashi » Thu Sep 29, 2011 1:59 am

alex wrote:
Often these days when being aware of this inner stillness I become simultaneously aware of the effortless awareness that is the whole, then any 'efforting' regarding listening is let go of and absolute unity is experienced with all. The interaction gets kind of fun then and humour seems to seep into the conversation.
Thank you, alex. I also find that effortless awareness brings good flow into conversation and relationships. I can remember how awkward how 'forced conversation' always seems to be. I wouldn't really feel any flow between myself and the other person. The more you try to will a conversation to be a pleasant one, the more uncomfortable it seems to become. Whereas if you are smoking and joking with your buddies, you can feel that slight sense of elation and strong connection from effortless awareness.
Be water, my friend.

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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by nanashi » Thu Sep 29, 2011 2:32 am

snow, I am humbled by your response. In an effort to extract what you were trying to convey, I will try to dummy it down for myself. :oops:

There is a tendency for constant re-evaluation of both consciousness in others and one's 'self' on the path to awakening. Thus why we slip into old habits of mind dominated patterns of thought.

Re-evaluations provide opportunities for the mind to further understand awareness. These introspections, however, are still on the level of the mind.

Egos, observations, understanding, and the mind continue to play together.

Spoken (or thought-produced) words should not emanate ownership - otherwise you are back to square one, I guess.

**
Opportunities indeed. Unfortunately for me, I have an inclination to interpret people and their words during and after interactions. While it can prove to be beneficial to understand and 'know' the consciousness or lack thereof in others, the degree to which one allows the mind to dig its' 'hooks' into these interactions and fluff should be balanced, and perhaps taken with a grain of salt.

Thinking is okay - but just don't do it too much? lol.
Be water, my friend.

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Onceler
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by Onceler » Thu Sep 29, 2011 3:10 am

How do you know that you are more conscious than anyone else?

I no longer (mostly) think I am more conscious than anyone else.....why compare? Problem solved. I know this because I have proven over and over again that I slip into unawareness at the blink of an eye, the drop of a hat. It's the state of humanness. Just like everyone else. Comparing is rather stressful and unhelpful....isn't it?
Be present, be pleasant.

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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by ZenDrumming » Thu Sep 29, 2011 3:47 am

That was a great post, snowheight.

I've been burdening myself with these same questions lately, which I suppose is a symptom of experiencing both awakened and then not-so-awakened moments. It's hard for me to get over the desire to help others reach a higher awareness, especially when it seems that everybody I interact with has a hard time just being "real" in conversation or action. Any verbal advice (in context, of course) is bound to be misinterpreted or to just come off as preaching. I try to be present, but this quote keeps popping up in my head:

"When a pickpocket sees a saint, all he sees are his pockets."

What that says to me is that somebody who isn't willingly on the search for truth isn't able to sense awakened states in others. I've found that many people I interact with expect a certain cooperation from me; that I will feed their egos as they feed mine. The "pickpocket" metaphor may be a bit extreme, but it seems like a lot of people do form relationships with only egoistic goals in mind. I think that ET's advice that you posted is accurate, that cultivating presence is the best thing we can do for others, but I also think it's important to not attempt to use your presence to change others. How could we "use" presence anyway? What a contradiction! (If you can't already tell, I'm typing this out for the benefit of both of us)

Snowheight is completely correct (this post consists of unnecessary complaining) because in no way should others affect my level of presence. I think a big part of overcoming this, at least for me, is to abandon the desire to bring others with you and just work on your own awakening. It can be pretty frustrating when we ourselves slip, but just the fact that it bothers us should tell us that we ourselves are, in that moment, unconscious.

nutrition
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by nutrition » Thu Sep 29, 2011 2:15 pm

It can be pretty frustrating when we ourselves slip, but just the fact that it bothers us should tell us that we ourselves are, in that moment, unconscious.
Yes, this is so true. It is also true that it is much easier to be present with strangers or people with whom we have a very superficial, attachment free relationship.
As ET says, to see if you are really enlightened try to spend a few days with your family.

blessing

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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by HermitLoon » Thu Sep 29, 2011 8:07 pm

Consciousness is the essence of the Human Experience - there is no one who is not conscious - and yet consciousness is not the essence of being.
Peace

snowheight
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by snowheight » Fri Sep 30, 2011 4:20 pm

HermitLoon wrote:Consciousness is the essence of the Human Experience - there is no one who is not conscious - and yet consciousness is not the essence of being.
The mind raises the question: if not consciousness, then what is that essence of being? ... and when dropped by the mind in favor of inquiry by the heart a more full experience of the pointer unfolds. As always 'Loon, gratitude arises for the contribution.

nananshi, I've really enjoyed reading your posts. There is a fellow traveler here ... another mind associated with a different unique perspective that expresses the immense curiosity and fascination with this non-experience that we'll never be able to truly and fully describe.

That mind stuff above about the single candle aphorism is interesting and can be useful to other apparent minds -- when mind is used as a tool some good stuff can come out -- but what I've found from participating here is that, as fun as such exertions may be, reading the signposts home doesn't require intellectual gymnastics:
Onceler wrote:How do you know that you are more conscious than anyone else?

I no longer (mostly) think I am more conscious than anyone else.....why compare? Problem solved. I know this because I have proven over and over again that I slip into unawareness at the blink of an eye, the drop of a hat. It's the state of humanness. Just like everyone else. Comparing is rather stressful and unhelpful....isn't it?
nutrition wrote:
It can be pretty frustrating when we ourselves slip, but just the fact that it bothers us should tell us that we ourselves are, in that moment, unconscious.
Yes, this is so true. It is also true that it is much easier to be present with strangers or people with whom we have a very superficial, attachment free relationship.
As ET says, to see if you are really enlightened try to spend a few days with your family.

blessing
The streets of this forum are literally paved with gold. :D

This being said and recognized, I want to answer a few things you and ZDrum' brought up directly, mind-to-mind.
nanashi wrote:Thinking is okay - but just don't do it too much? lol.
Thinking just is. Thoughts arise. Are they yours? Can they be prevented? The concept of the apparent act of thinking can, if filtered through the most common of rubrics, be understood to be quite necessary to a functioning life situation. It can also be fun. I can even lead to intellectual insight into our true nature. None of that is important. Thinking just is.
nanashi wrote:Opportunities indeed. Unfortunately for me, I have an inclination to interpret people and their words during and after interactions.
Who is it that is inclined? Who is it that interprets?
ZenDrumming wrote:"When a pickpocket sees a saint, all he sees are his pockets."
Telling the mind that the imperative is our individual awakening and everything else will take care of itself may not be satisfying, but it also has a flip side -- it is only a concept. Can we drop all conditioning? Should we try? Humanity is unique among animals in our initial level of helplessness in this life with the corresponding benefit of extreme adaptability and flexibility -- dropping all conditioning permanently would include forsaking language and forgetting how to swim or tie shoelaces.

Part of my conditioning is to avoid getting ripped-off. A few weeks ago I made a 70 mile trip twice to buy a car because the market where I live is dominated by one dealer that carries either new cars or used cars with 30k+ miles ... my guess is that they don't want to step on their own toes with the kind of low-mileage 1 or 2 year old cars that I like to buy because of the value proposition. Wound up finding just the right car by widening my search radius and when I got to the dealership it was this small, quaint affair -- (me, in appraising the decor) "... wow, this place has been here awhile, huh?" (the salesperson) "...yeah, same family has owned it for the last 70 years...". Also got a side benefit of visiting the shore of lake Ontario -- always a few hours drive from me but just not some place I've spent much time. Since I was there I decided to experience it. Wow. In Oswego there is this power plant with these massive concrete smokestacks next to a park and a seawall that you can walk on that protects a bay and marina in front of the park and that brings you out several hundred yards onto the lake and includes a lighthouse in it's perimeter and the whole vista can be taken in from a hill at one end. Wow.
ZenDrumming wrote: I've found that many people I interact with expect a certain cooperation from me; that I will feed their egos as they feed mine. The "pickpocket" metaphor may be a bit extreme, but it seems like a lot of people do form relationships with only egoistic goals in mind.
nanashi wrote:While it can prove to be beneficial to understand and 'know' the consciousness or lack thereof in others, the degree to which one allows the mind to dig its' 'hooks' into these interactions and fluff should be balanced, and perhaps taken with a grain of salt.
We can't just give up and rest on this idea that our awareness is all that matters. Knowing this truth, both intellectually and feeling it are only a starting point. From that starting point life situation will flow onward, and "apparently letting unconscious individuals get away with murder" could just be another form of unconsciousness in itself.

What's an apparent person to not-do?? :lol:
Stop talking. Hear every sound as background. Look straight ahead and focus. Take one deep breath. This is you. This is Now.

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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by HermitLoon » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:05 pm

The mind raises the question: if not consciousness, then what is that essence of being? ... and when dropped by the mind in favor of inquiry by the heart a more full experience of the pointer unfolds. As always 'Loon, gratitude arises for the contribution .
Thanks Snowheight.
The "essence of being" is nothing - no_thing - beyond the mind.
The conditioned mind always wants to label, quantify and describe - to know and to answer - that's just the "way" that this script goes. One source of peace and joy might be for a mind to simply accept not-knowing.
Peace

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Onceler
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by Onceler » Fri Sep 30, 2011 10:36 pm

Snowheight wrote: "The streets of this forum are literally paved with gold."

It gives "gilt" a new meaning.....
Be present, be pleasant.

unbornawakened
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Re: Living among the unconscious

Post by unbornawakened » Fri Sep 30, 2011 11:12 pm

Where is the gold ? I want it, or else I can't be enlightened :? :roll: :| The high-priced enlighteners and therapists want nothing but gold from me :roll: :(

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