Consciousness is All There Is – October 29 2018

Consciousness is All There Is – October 29 2018

Consciousness is everything:
God, all the gods, the elements of which the world is made,
creatures and things of every kind,
however large or small,
however born or formed,
including all that breathes, walks, flies,
and all that moves or does not move.
 
All these are known by consciousness,
and take their stand in consciousness.
 
Coming after consciousness,
the whole world stands in consciousness.
 
Consciousness is all there is.
 
One who knows self,
as consciousness,
has risen from
this seeming world
to simple truth:
 
where all desires
are attained
and deathlessness
is realized.
from Aitareya, Chapter 3,
From the Upanishads, translated by Ananda Wood
(free pdf of the entire work at: Ananda Wood at advaita.org.uk)
 
 
This is the message. Consciousness is all there is.
 
When we read the works of Vedanta, the Upanishads, this is what we find again and again, said in every possible way, from every conceivable point of view. Consciousness is all there is.
 
From this one essential truth, all else may be extrapolated.
 
Consciousness is all there is. Therefore:
  • there only is one thing
  • every thing that makes up the one thing must be conscious
  • at bottom, below the level of appearances, the truth of all things is unity
  • I am that one thing
  • you are that one thing
  • the truth of us is unity
  • the truth of my soul and your soul is unity
  • the truth of my soul and your soul and all these people here on this planet is unity
  • the truth of my soul and your soul and all these people and planets/stars/galaxies/clusters of galaxies/this universe/the multi-verse/everything everywhere for all time and beyond, is unity.
  • Though this is the Truth, capital ‘T’, we also have bodies and feelings and thoughts and needs that sometime are so strong that we are able absolutely to forget the Truth and behave as though all is separation; and as if our life depends on getting this job or this lover or this amount of money; that there is some game here in life that I must win; that sometimes in order for me to win I must be sure that you lose; etc. 
 
The movement between these two experiences of Self – all is unity/all is separation – is what makes life interesting, what makes it all a worthwhile experiment. It’s what gives us legitimate work to do within ourselves, every moment of every day. It’s what gives us a direction to move in when hatred seems to be everywhere we turn, and ‘us’ vs. ‘them’ is seen as an answer to the ills of our society.
 
Today I will remember, when I can, that unity is the Truth of this existence, and I will find the way to let it be okay when I forget and behave as a human.
 
Dunes, Death Valley, CA