What on Earth is Going on in the World?

That is a huge question many are asking themselves now as they face the often chaotic world events. Or perhaps many people are saying, “Who can we look to and trust for answers?

I believe some of the unrest is due to a huge amount of the population are in the midst of or are going through a massive cultural change; a growth spurt.

We can see that some young people, because their old values have been undermined or destroyed, have turned to people who offer them what seems like certainty and meaning – in extreme cults or belief systems.

But many have been infected with the nihilistic modern philosophy, feeling they and their lives are meaningless. That is a common path for those who look for meaning to be handed to them ready made by society, by the learned elite, by religious dogma, by science or by what they observe in the world.

But for a few who dare to explore nihilism within themselves it seems more  like:

“There was a gate leading to a path, and somehow I had the feeling that I wanted to put a warning sign over the gate saying something like, ‘Give up hope if you dare to enter here’! The path led to a hill, and when I reached the top I was on the edge of a precipitous drop. The view was extraordinary, like looking into a vast void. It was like seeing into everything, and with a sinking heart I could sense no being, no God, just a huge impersonal space.

The feeling floored me and I sat there and gave up on any hope of finding what I had hoped for – a sort of wonderful welcome. But as I sat a deep quietness grew in me – I had given up looking for answers! And that was when a quiet bliss grew in me, and I realised that many others had got to the same spot and sat there. I also realised that I had been seeking an external god, and in giving up my search and becoming quiet had found the inner bliss that we all are.”

The central point of the experience was, “I had given up looking for answers!”

This is again apparent in this next description.

“I had a strong fantasy of the head in my dream coming alive; it was me and what I had done to myself, torn my body and head apart trying to find a solution. Then I saw flesh on its cheeks. Then it was like a native mask made of various things, and feathers. The feathers predominated in the fantasy. The mask kept breaking up, leaving only a few feathers, as if it or I were all nothing. I remember saying – “There is not even a mask, it’s just a few feathers. I am nothing and do not really exist!”

With enormous certainty I realised that there was no cure for my emotional sickness and I had struggled in vain. It was a tremendous blow – and I gave up. I mean I gave up hope, everything, and simple lay there.

Then I had a vision of one feather tied to a twig by piece of wool, blowing in the wind – a feather blowing in the wind. This was very stable and persistent in the fantasy. Everything resolved back to the feather blowing in the wind. It seemed like a Red Indian symbol, perhaps tied to the suspended body of the dead, but I could not understand.

Then it came to me that I had to listen in deep stillness – not think, not seek to understand, not struggle, just listen. My whole being entered into silence, gently listening as one might listen to the rain falling on a lake. Then suddenly it was known – the feather blowing in the wind – the sound of one hand clapping – the essence of human existence. Open against the sky – emptiness – enormity. I was healed.”

The man’s feather representing for him that his personality, his ego was nothing but a feather blowing in the wind, tossed around by every change in his life. The reality he felt was the emptiness, the nothingness which was yet his central reality – a nothingness that has the potential to be anything. This he felt was ‘the essence of human existence’.

Nihilism has not been really explored what was seen in what was said above. If I look into myself, there is a great void, emptiness, a nothing that is at the same time everything. Miraculously things emerge from the emptiness. So, I believe that acknowledging the apparent nothingness and recognising it as the source of everything you call self, sets you free. I have realised again and again that the wonderful nothing that is everything is the essence of all living things – animals, plants even rocks – and the only thing that stops them expressing the same intelligence as us is their ‘equipment’ isn’t as sophisticated.

Something that stops us really exploring our depths is that when we approach our inner void or hugeness we often react to it with fear or panic. So, we experience massive fear or being attacked by aliens or frightening creatures.

But it is a frightening realisation too. For it brings us to the realisation that nobody else, no God or Devil, nothing else creates the hell or heaven we experience life to be. Nobody else creates our love or smouldering vengefulness for we are alone in our creation.

This was all summed up in this amazing vision:

Example: I looked up at the wall above the bed. It was an unlikely shade of green, but what was remarkable was that on the clear expanse of the wall I could see a huge circle, alive and full of movement. My attention was riveted by this amazing circle. At its centre was an unmoving emptiness, nothingness. Yet out of this void sprung all the forms of life as plants, trees, animals and people. They were constantly emerging from the pool of emptiness, dancing in time to music. All this stream of emerging life moved weaving in time with the sound, in and out of the other each other to the periphery of the great circle. Here it turned and with equal complexity and rhythm moved back to the void. At its return it was lost, dissolved, in that unmoving emptiness. As I witnessed the whole moving circle I realised it portrayed a great truth of life. D. D.

Here is another observation most of is miss:

“I was sitting opposite someone during a meditation. We had been posing the question for days – ‘Who are you?’ Suddenly I realised that it was a silly question, because I was the answer. All thought stopped and I existed as the answer. My being had always been this. In this state there was an awareness of being connected with everything around me, in the beginning of creation. This was the first day. Also I was aware of what I felt was a monkey running to keep up with what was the real me. It was what I had always thought of as the real me, and it was nothing but a monkey that wanted to be the real thing but couldn’t. The monkey me was a photocopy of everything we believe, not the reality. Our conscious mind is a photocopier and yet we are so sure we know reality.’

That is something most of us avoid, losing what we feel is so precious, our ego with it many dependencies upon what it believes are its needs – a sexual relationship, a loving partner, success and money, being acknowledge as someone. We feel losing those things would be death. But such things as sexual pleasure, having a personality, are not denied to us, but if we can let go of the frantic battle to preserve them, then we are no longer  tied up in knots of dependence, pain or pointlessness.

If you can face the fear of apparent death, of giving up your egoistic desires and dependencies, you could try Opening to Life.

 

 

Copyright © 1999-2010 Tony Crisp | All rights reserved