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Where did the ego come from?
Does the world manifest material complexity outwards, resulting in subtler layers of existence? Does it start from insentient matter which then becomes biological life that develops into sophisticated beings with specific senses, ego and finally this consciousness now reading these words while thinking I am reading? This sequence of unfolding is what we are told is true. But have you investigated it?
Are you Alive?
Are you alive? You would probably reply: Yes I am.
Are you conscious? Since you are reading this you are most likely not in a coma and so you would say: Yes I am conscious”
Who is this “I” you refer to? Do you point to yourself?
Is your body conscious?
Is all of it conscious, or only parts of it? Your left big toe? No?
Is your brain conscious? Is the fat lining the nerves conscious?
Nobody wants to suffer. Everybody wants to pinpoint the problem and to know the solution. Only a few ask themselves why they perceive something as a problem. Fewer still have the clarity to perceive the deep knowledge that can be learned from their fearless experience of a “problem”.
What we perceive as a problem is based on how we like our world to be. The spectrum of what we like goes from wanting to simply be alive, to wanting the tiniest of superfluous trifles to be according to our specific expectations. How we like our world to be is highly individual and a lot of what we expect to get from the world, is based on unconscious desires and fears. Never-the-less we do not hesitate to construct empires based on those imaginary and fragile foundations.
Man has a wonderful mind full of thoughts and imagination. Rather, mind is imagination itself. We imagine a city and build it. We look at memories. We picture a particular kind of life and imagine that we are trying to pursue it according to our accumulated desires and dislikes, which are nothing but memories.
Put simply, we imagine we are life and that the world around us may threaten our efforts to maintain this particular desired version of life.
This way of picturing our relationship with the world will produce an infinite variation of desires. Once desires appear, fears that these desires will not come true also appear. When you look closely, all desires and all fears are fundamentally rooted in two basic longings: longing to exist and the longing to connect. You can also view these longings as fears: fear of loneliness and fear of death.
A shiny brass trident carrying the hand drum of Shiva, god of destruction, absolute wisdom and bliss, is trembling impatiently in the windscreen. Above and below the narrow serpentine mountain road, towering Himalayan cedars block the view, as we rumble along the potholed tarmac towards the Jhanna waterfalls. Here and there colourful villages perched on steep terraced slopes, flash between the dark tree trunks. At the tall waterfalls cascading from high meadows and snowclad peaks, we get out and put on our backpacks.