When we work our way into meditation or deep sleep, we pull down some walls, roll up the sidewalks and wander freely through altered awareness. We see things we’re taught to pass off as dreams, as if dreams don’t count.
(Off We Go Into The Dream of Sleep is excerpted from Amazing: Truths About Conscious Awareness.)
Dream interpreters put together stories where unconscious travels explain emotional cramps and psychological blocks in our waking lives. What happens beyond the curtains of sleep is reshuffled and categorized as one more collection of symptoms, reinforcing perceptions of life as a jaunt from illness to illness, one all-inclusive disability.
But isn’t it just as easy to describe what goes on when we melt the three dimensions as a timeless swim through fields, realities and alternatives normally unknown by us?
If consciousness is what becomes of being awake, why isn’t unconsciousness seen as leaning in the direction of what’s missing to complete reality?
It’s very hard to go there in conversation because, as far as we know, our travels are made alone and seem nonconformist and singular, as if we’re shaping new languages and arts.
What we know about our dreams is that every reality and every memory is reduced when translated, essentially reduced to rational reality. We interpret limitless perceptions restrained within the limits of conscious awareness.
Our ultimate reality is left incomplete by enforcing too much common sense. Our weirdest memories are probably never laid down for recalling because we have no context for them, no city where they can live. We don’t know what the hell kind of building we’re supposed to make out of these strange materials, even as we go back every night and fondle them again.
But if those of us eager to know, to push discovery with philosophical-lyrical imagination, can scrape up some truth out of the crazy stuff underneath, maybe making it seem less crazy, we can get past the barriers of logic.
Physicists analyze tons of data, looking for new information, as particle accelerators force quantum interactions, but we need to fit what we learn into a context more holistic than mechanics now permit. We need to imagine new sorts of gears, pulleys and electrodes. We need to get back the spiritual awe the founders of modern physics had.
Are we looking at energies left over from the Big Bang, or are we seeing the tracings of God? Is life
accidental, or is it full of meaning, information and wisdom?
Even something else, maybe more directed but not controlled? Can we ever know truth by depending on facts alone?
Answers to those questions have begun to percolate through public conversations. Zen meditation, for example, is being claimed to have informed monks centuries ago of insights physicists are just getting to now, but meditators explain it in spiritual terms, as Oneness, while science reaches for a clockwork universe explaining Theory of Everything.
Each is a little leery of the other, but what the heck, maybe they can still get married.
It’s a worthy courtship, after all. Pretending that we are what we are or “It is what it is,” as the self-appointed realists say, ignores significant evidence about ultimate reality that points in the other direction, toward “It is what it isn’t.”
Down deep, the things (for lack of a better word) that make us up are different from the ones we know in the reality we see every day in conscious awareness. We must accept that realism is realistic only withing its own limitations and is far from the fantasies of ultimate reality.
To know who we are, we have to get beyond the security of conventional thinking and see what there is to know when we become revolutionary, radicalized irrationalists, pioneers in search of ultimate reality.