Software of the Mind #1: In The Beginning There Was Thought

by Matthew Webb

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In the twilight before the dawn of civilization, the connection between humanity and Nature was still strong. Hunter-gatherers seeking food and self protection in the wilds, lived the wisdom of Nature because they never left its influence. Mind and body were coordinated in concert as a matter of alert, focused attention. The mental and physical realms knew no divisions or distinctions, nor could any be afforded. Without inner coordination a lack of personal unity meant certain death, which is a condition of the efficiency everywhere in Nature. Life to our ancient ancestors depended on the personal power to survive, as a mind/body strength that left no room for waste or unnatural focus. Also without division was the self and the environment, and these two worked in close cooperation. Feeling and Awareness were then the primary guides to right action as a lifestyle, one which proved to be extremely effective. Feeling/Awareness indicated the Intentions of others, the presence of prey, the threat of enemy tribes, the right timing for the hunt, for clan activities, and the routines of each season. Awareness kept keen by moment to moment alertness, revealed how to interpret subtle feelings as to where food might be found the next day, when storms would arrive, and how to make use of plants and animals. Nature provided every need so long as humanity remained at one with its cycles, purpose and rhythm.

The power and potentials of the human mind have continued to develop since primordial times, according to the Intent of the Earthmind. Human horizons are ever expanding because it is an aspect of nature to grow beyond its current limits. The forward push of evolution is relentless, and so too has the inner development of the human being since before the advent of agriculture. As ancient hunters found the means to refine the physical tools that aided survival, they also began to refine the inner tools that aided understanding itself. Thinking about existence, about themselves and life, gave rise to increasing inner sophistication. This in turn demonstrated itself in the outer world. At first, human thoughts like the beginning of life were simple, concerning themselves with only the most basic concepts. As time passed thought became more complex, and when this occurred an increasing desire to communicate these thoughts arose. Simple sounds indicating basic emotions and Intentions were replaced by series upon series of individual syllables, that in conjunction served to convey the increasing complexity of the inner human life. In this way words came about that were mutually agreed upon to represent specific objects, animals and plants in the physical world, as well as thoughts, emotions and Intentions in the mind.

The increased capacity to communicate very specific ideas was of great advantage to our species in all parts of the world. The knowledge of previous generations could now be preserved through the medium of sound, memorized through the retelling. Syllables became words, words created sentences, and sentences of representative images became the backbone of language.

Language it was realized is among the greatest of tools. It organizes thought into orderly patterns, rendering the mind more capable of sophisticated and symbolic understanding. Through symbols, (which is what syllables and words are) the mind crystallizes at will the representations of an unlimited number of things. A synthesis of diverse symbols enhances inspiring art and innovative technology, and the creativity to generate new, more useful ideas. On the personal level language and its symbolic representations can enrich the inner realm, representing ideas through which life and self can be reviewed, refined and transformed. Wisdom, intelligence and self review can through such symbolism be increased at will. All of the aspects of existence can then in the mind be manipulated and synthesized, in any combination or degree.

The truly flexible tool that is language is one that today can address every aspect of life. Humanity has labeled an incredibly large portion of existence. There are names given to a universe of things and combinations there of. So inclusive is language that it has become a focal point for the study of culture, history and the psychology of any given mind.

As with any tool of great merit, any technology of broad application, the potential that exists for the misuse of language is equally great. The key that is language, which can symbolically and creatively unlock much of the mystery of existence, itself becomes a trap. Our ancestors learned to employ language to advantage, yet were largely unaware of the potential hazards of its increasing use in daily living. With the advent of early agriculture the amount of available free Energy for living became greater. Greater Energy meant more leisure time for organized groups and extended families. Understanding of the inner world through self contemplation grew, yet so too did an artificial synthesis of natural concepts. This compounded the artificiality of human thought over and over again, until words themselves no longer held literal meaning. Human-created thought then began to replace natural understanding as the primary mode of the mind. In other words, our own ideas replaced the practical knowledge of Nature and right living.

Through the greater Energy made available by a knowledge of plant and animal cultivation, the use of tools and self-made places to live, humanity was freed from a dependence on Nature, or so it seemed. Images, concepts and Gods were given form through the mind, many of which began to glorify only the human process and not the design of Nature. Generation upon generation passed which built upon these earliest of thoughts, that are today the root of civilization. Many thousands of years gave rise to the further synthesis of social ideas and assumptions regarding the nature of life. These increased the use of technology, but also decreased our conscious connection with Nature. Gradually this connection became a distant memory for most of our kind. When the connection with Nature is lost, so too is the natural knowledge of plants, animals, our own bodies and right living in general.

The potential advantages of the tool that is language, has become a paradigm based on human creations alone. It has become the modern crutch. The wrong use of language is the ultimate addiction because it is the one fundamental dependency we have, with which every aspect of living is intimately related. At no time does the unnatural representation of life in the form of words leave the modern psychology for more than a few seconds. The constant stream of mental dialogs, sales slogans, and half remembered songs are as the howling winds of storms which never cease in our inner landscape. Plagued are we by these symbols of our own creation, for they occupy like an invading army, both the inner and outer worlds. Never are we consciously without the compulsion to chatter on inwardly. It is almost as rare to find a moment in the modern outer world that is without an equal bombardment of the mind, with one symbol after the next. The auditory and visual landscape we experience with radio, television, advertisement and the workplace all revolve around the axis of artificial likenesses, and so does what we create within that context. The world marketplace is occupied not so much by actual products as it is the icons of social status. We no longer purchase products, we purchase the images that will be seen and approved of by others. Even self image or mind itself we are expected to believe, is based on words and images, and that only through words and images can we effect personal change. This assumption implies that we have indeed strayed far from the Truth of Natural Law, and the wisdom of natural living.

When language first came about it represented very concrete, practical aspects of moment to moment living. It was then for the tribe or clan yet another tool for action, just as any implement carried in the hand. The direct parallel of word and form was implicitly obvious, and thus language remained only a tool and not the center of inner and outer focus. The incautious use of language began to synthesize the correlation between word and form to such a point, that they no longer had any obvious connection with one another. It was then that ideas arose which had absolutely no bearing upon the reality of existence. In modern society the gulf between name and actual form has become immense. So too is the distance between the unnatural mind and Natural Law.

The tool of language, originally used for greater success in Nature, has become instead a mindset which attempts to justify its own existence at the cost of Nature. A tool is only something used to facilitate a given purpose. When it becomes a purpose in and of itself it loses effectiveness. Words and the social ideas they represent have become an addiction, because they now exist solely for the purpose of distracting the artificial mind, (ego) from its own felt imbalances. In this way thought itself has lost the practical meanings it was originally intended to convey. It has been forgotten that words and the mental processes which are composed by them, are only representations of things, not the things themselves. The implicit assumption in modern society is that the representation of life is an effective replacement for life itself. To say "good living" in the right, socially acceptable context, is (supposedly) to give it reality, and in association with any product or device imaginable. To speak of happiness, family, morals, love or God, is to assume that not only does the listener know what is being said, but that to merely express the words themselves is a sufficient conveyance of their experiential meaning.

Words however, are not by any means the things they supposedly represent. They are but the shadows of things made of imagination and consensual agreement only, having no more meaning than exactly what they are given. To forget this is to fall prey to one’s own creations. Words tend to be by nature, unnatural representations. When used without care, they create a conceptual gulf between the self and the actual, experiential value of any given thing. We have in essence been consumed by the thoughts and images of our own making, and with the mind replaced the entire world and everything in it. What now remains are facades of reality. Existence for us has taken on the superficiality of name devoid of its true form. We have forgotten that form or reality itself is more important by far than any label imposed on it. By the same token, it has been forgotten that right action is more important than any theoretical evaluation in words.

Traditional psychology has presented the conclusion that the mind is composed of thought as a natural state of living. It further concludes that the only means of self change we have available to us is through the medium of thought, of words and artificial images that supposedly represent who we are. The point missed by this view is that we are not born with words or language; these are a learned behavior based on human creations. The true identity of the self is not based on thought or memories of past experiences at all, but Consciousness itself. Thoughts, words, language and all their products are instead, the creation of Consciousness.

Consciousness is the very essence of existence with which we were born, which never leaves us during life, and which we return to upon physical death, as souls. It must always be remembered that thought is a tool only, that words are only representations of things and not the things themselves. For this reason thought, or more specifically our own thoughts, can no more accurately represent our true identity than they can the universe at large. Through meditation the Truth of this is clearly revealed, demonstrating the self to be the soul that is beyond the need of thought and words to possess identity.

Self image or ego is a representation composed of thought. It is a symbol that is presented to the world which is not the true self. Personality cannot be fundamentally modified through psychological manipulation, and yet the major institutions of social reform still claim that it can. The ego, which is completely artificial, is sustained by the continuous repetition of certain thoughts about the self moment to moment. Without this continual reinforcement it begins to fall apart, a process which evokes the phrase, "I don't know who I am right now". The question in Truth is not "who" we are, but in fact what we are. The question of "who" is only in relation to others in society, and its artificial concepts of life. The question of what we are on the other hand is extremely relevant to all places and times, for the answer to this is everlasting Consciousness. Ego is always fundamentally changing depending upon what kind of thoughts support it. It may be defined in association with one’s occupation, family, philosophy, religion, past memories, social position, or sheer imagination. Ego is entirely arbitrary in essence, for it is a creation of the mind, maintained at the cost of great personal Energy and intelligence. It becomes for these reasons only an imagined territory to defend. The consciousness which composes the true self on the other hand is of timeless, universal essence. It is not dependent upon the view of any one culture, memory, family or social position.

Ego originally arises in us, in modern society, primarily as a result of fear. In reality it is only a protective shield of thought, created and reinforced by the mind in an attempt at self protection. When deep fear first arises in the young child, their natural openness and high vibration makes them exceptionally vulnerable to hostile environmental influences. These may be in the form of competitive peers, abusive parents, poor living conditions or stressful circumstances of any kind. The child often feels in these conditions a deep hollowness or despair, for as a soul they have not forgotten the real nature of existence, which is love and intelligent design. They intuit or directly perceive the lack of love and intelligence in their environment. Finding no support in this inner knowledge, they begin to doubt their own validity of perception and self worth. Furthermore, the sensitive child is mistakenly taught by adults that the whole reason for living is to fulfill the ideas of society. They are taught to value ruthless competition and materialism as the definition of so-called "success". Sensitivity in such a world is not valued, nor is true intelligence. Both of these naturally challenge the falsehoods of such a status-quo as ours.

Finding no support in what they naturally intuit to be true, and simply feeling the "wrongness" of the adult world, the naturally sensitive and intelligent child learns fear. This is the first major initiation of our kind, into a society which is itself literally brimming over with fear and hostile, unnatural conditions. To cope with this fear, the child then learns to mimic the behavior of adults as they are pressured to do, just to survive. This behavior has become the standard template for the behavior of the young. It is primarily artificial and egoistic, with all the posturing, manipulation and psychic discord that this implies. At its root, the fear we first feel as children begins well before we learn language. It begins before we are even born, in the form of psychic influences rendered by a world that is out of control, and out of touch with its essence. We have as a species learned to ignore the nearly constant feelings of pain and fear, as the warning signals of wrong Intent that they are.

Nature neither knows nor needs ego to function, and neither do we. It arises and is maintained by only three factors, and when these do not exist, ego automatically drops away. One factor is fear, which is the primary cause for its continuation. Another is a concern for the opinions of others, in this current world paradigm of hollow imagery. This concern is the result of the supposed need to "fit in" with the attitudes of others, to be accepted as one with the crowd, regardless of what that crowd values or does. The third sustaining element of ego is thought. All three of these contributing factors can be brought under personal mastery, in order to disband the ego and no longer suffer its disadvantages.

In practicing body-wide Awareness of Awareness, the meditator has the opportunity to seek out fear wherever it resides in the self. When noticed, the fear that is lodged in various locations in the body can then be dissolved. Without the experience of fear there is no felt need of self protection, thus when fear drops, ego is also disabled. As for living for the sake of the opinions of others, this too can be dissolved by valuing Truth as the highest priority of living. There is no real advantage in living one’s life in accord with a society that has forgotten its own roots. Truth sustains life through factual benefit, whereas social opinion arbitrarily destroys and corrupts. To live according to the public view is to sacrifice what is truly of value to the soul. To be “politically correct” is to eventually erode personal welfare and happiness, which are themselves essentially absent in the modern world. In the case of eliminating thought as the focus of self identity, the repeated entry into Awareness of Awareness will eventually convince the practitioner beyond any doubt whatsoever, that the true self is nothing other than consciousness.




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