Vulcans, and walling and allowing experience

 

In watching movies, I cannot help being curious about what processes they may reflect, both within each of us and among us. Often, it is quite simple and basic such as with the Vulcans in Star Trek (I have been watching some of the original episodes for the first time).

Walls

The Vulcans have learned to suppress and control feelings and emotions, and rely on cool intelligence. And this reflects the common view in our culture, at least in the 60s: we either have to act on our feelings and emotions, or we have to suppress them.

Either way, we do battle with them. They are an Other that either controls or is controlled by us. There is a space where I am here and emotions there, and when they get strong, they either flood and overpower me, or I am able to erect and maintain a wall that keeps them in check.

The skill of the Vulcans is to be able to very effectively erect and maintain these walls, although they do break down sometimes (sometimes with scary results, and other times to the glee of Kirk and Bones.)

Trapped in this mode, the sense is that if I allow myself to fully experience something, it will take over, it will overpower me, I will loose control. And this fear is the motivation to keep holding it at bay, whatever it is – grief, sadness, anger, rage, pain, joy, pleasure, love, bliss.

Space

But this is only one option. The other is to allow ourselves to fully experience whatever we experience, to be with it, to allow resistance to the content of our experience to fall away.

Here, there is a sense of spaciousness, of holding and allowing any content. And there is a sense of release, and we realize that the pressure that we thought we were erecting a wall and fighting against, was created by the wall and the fighting itself. Without the wall and the resistance, there is no pressure. There is just whatever is experiences, unfolding within and as awareness and space, and that is it.

There is no sense of being overpowered, because the whole sense of I and Other becomes more transparent and spacious. They are revealed as part of the same space.

Intense experiences may be unfolding, but unfolding within a much larger (actually infinite) space. There is only pressure when the space is walled in. Without walls, no pressure.

And without pressure, any experience is revealed as bliss itself. For me right now, giving a sense of blissful smooth expansive quiet fullness,.

A Richness In Ordinary Life

 

If all is the play of God, then there must be a great deal of interest and richness in an ordinary life. There are, by definition, far more ordinary and average lives than the obviously extraordinary ones, and why would there be unless there was an extraordinary richness even in these ordinary and unassuming lives?

All of this – the words play, interest, richness, ordinary, extraordinary and so on – are just abstractions, an overlay of what is. Still, is may point to something beyond these abstractions – something to explore and see what emerges from it.

In this case, it may help us see our own lives – as they are, often ordinary and unassuming – as being immensely rich. Rich enough for God to want to manifest in this particular way, to explore itself in this life as it is right now.

And it also seems that when we allow our experiences more fully into awareness, when we are with our experiences, we realize this richness directly.

That is certainly the case for me. When I am with my experiences, there is an immense richness there – often tinged with some bliss as well, independent on whatever other content may be there.

Dualistic and Transdual Joy

 

Transdual Joy

When awareness awakens to its own nature of spacious awareness, it naturally functions in a more transdual way which..

Brings up spontaneous joy and bliss, independent of the external/internal situation of the self. Indeed, when there is no resistance to our experiences (how can there be if there is no separation, when we are the experiences), then all experiences becomes bliss. We realize that suffering comes from our resistance to the experiences.

Brings up spontaneous compassion and empathy. There is no separation, so there is a natural compassion for all beings.

Dualistic Joy

When awareness is exclusively identified with – or caught up in – the small self, it functions in a dualistic way. It only knows experiences of joy, bliss, compassion etc. as being triggered by a specific combination of external and internal circumstances. It believes in thoughts, and only allow experiences to come up that match the current combination of beliefs and situations. Otherwise, it closes itself off from them.

When transdual joy, bliss, compassion etc. is expressed through another self, the awareness which is still exclusively identified with and caught up in the small self places labels on the behavior. It calls it “joy”, “compassion”, and maybe “holy”, “spiritual”, etc. And from this, it may try to emulate it by creating a “spiritual” identity for itself. It closes itself off from anything that does not fit with the label and the image, and tries to force an expression and experience that does. This does obvisouly not work for very long, and only creates more suffering.

The only solution is to awaken to the nature of mind, from where it can soften and let go of any fixed identity and express itself more fluidly. Which in turn will be “fixed” into labels and images by awarenesses which are still identified with other small selves.

Bliss

 

It seems that the function of bliss is as a “glue” to dissolve – apparent – boundaries.

On a personal level, we experience bliss through intimacy (physical, emotional, mental) with another person. And we can experience bliss through connection with nature, the Earth and the universe.

And there seems to be an experience of bliss each time there is an awakening – from a smaller whole to a larger whole. As the boundaries fall, there is a new bliss. And as we become comfortable and familiar with the holon level we are at, it becomes ordinary and the bliss fades, and we are motivated (eventually) to seek to transcend the next boundary.

The question is, what happens in the “end” – at the highest level of the holarchy (God/Existence)? The answer may be that it experiences itself in myriads of ways through all its different manifestations, all its local awareness organs.

The awareness of a local awareness organ is initially very local, and then slowly awakens and becomes more inclusive, until it eventuall awakens to Big Mind. And here, it manifests in a myriad of local awareness organs all with initially local awareness. It is cycles within cycles, within an unfolding and evolving universe (and whatever wider context there is for the manifest phenomena).