The slayer who thinks he slays is slain.
How often do we have the experience of being absent minded when we are just sitting? While just sitting, we forget who we are? Or where we are?
Daydreaming. And what do daydreams consist of? Experience?
Memories, imagination, images. Are they directed by the patterns of our experience? Show any real relation to our sense or how our day goes?
Perhaps another approach. Can the person who likes oatmeal come to dislike oatmeal?
Yes. If it makes us sick one time. Is it just as likely for our preferences to change as remain the same?
I’d say they are pretty constant unless something happens to have us take notice in one way or another. What would be the reason anything about us remains consistent? Why don’t we just change our demeanour as whim strikes us?
We value certain things over others? Where do those values come from? Are they inherent in the experiences?
I don’t think so. Some things do seem to be innate. If values were innate to experiences, then we would be the sum of our experiences, and the things we have learned about life would be the only material to derive an identity from, and yet we often feel ill at ease in the context or frame that our experience provides for us, do we not? We wind up feeling something along the lines of, “There has got to be more than this.” This is perhaps the primary thing that motivates any spiritual seeking at all. Is there any other motivation behind spirituality?
I think that’s it. Why is it so hard to perceive the space between experience and self? Perhaps in order to preserve our sense of security, we invest emotionally in a world view that operates according to a pattern of action and reaction, cause and effect, and one where the meanings of experience, the terms we use to understand the meaning of life, are set and agreed upon by others, as far as that’s even possible of course. But do we actually achieve this sense of security?
No, it even undermines security. We come into the world as ourselves, and we have no idea that we will come to have ideas about ourselves that will deny our feelings, limit our imagination and even cause us to hurt ourselves and other people. And even stranger that these hurts would not only be allowed but required by the rules of the game that will so demand our time and strength of heart and mind, that we will forget how it is to feel any differently or imagine as freely as we see and hear the world around us. Yet that drive to imagination can never be extinguished. We have not and cannot gut our mind in such a way that we are a fully functional shell or empty centred cog in the machine. So instead, our imagination leaks out into our life experience like water or dirt, that stuff that we may have enjoyed making mud pies with, and instead of serving as a creative medium, it just puts a smear on the supposedly beautiful and comforting real life that everybody supposedly values so much. No matter what we do or how much we achieve on some level, it all just winds up looking ugly, wrong somehow.
We’re jaded and bitter? It’s not as simple as that. The state we know as being jaded is a polite, grown up veneer of what is going wrong. Our imagination as children did not occur in a void. We didn’t just randomly make things up from out of nowhere. Our imaginings were natural and intuitive reactions to the things we were exposed to, everything we see and hear and even feel. We make, say, hurt feelings from harsh words said to us, into monsters hiding in our closet. This reality runs much deeper than simply serving as a filter for things a child doesn’t understand.
In a sense, we inherit our imaginations as innately as we could be said to inherit our DNA. Our visceral, organic experience isn’t just some abstract accident of chemistry that has no meaning to our experience of our lives. The information we inherit genetically is intelligible to us, but only in that elementary way.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.