Sunday, February 1, 2015

The Thing and I

Man is a thing.

That is, as we are, we are a part of creation – and everything that is created is a thing, that is, an inanimate object, or, if one wants to take the early German meaning of the word (which derives from Ding, still in current usage in German) a meeting place.

 What animates is not the object — it is the enlivening energy that comes into it. And we need to distinguish between things, that is, Meister Eckhart's creatures, the things of creation, and the Holy Spirit that animates all of them.

 As mankind is, we are a thing with many I's in us; and what Gurdjieff wants us to become is an I with many things in us. In the first case, we are inanimate and identified; in the second case, the situation is inverted, and we distinguish between the things — that which is created and inanimate — and the I, which is part of the divine seed of the Lord.

 It may sound like a bit of word trickery, but the I is an eye. That is to say, the Self, as it exists within the conscious awareness of its own being, is not only a spark of the divine seed which gives life to all creatures or things, it is also an aperture, a pupil through which all of the impressions of the world fall into Being. Being, in its entirety and in all of the cases where it arises and manifests — be it an atom, a warm, or a woman — is this active entity which receives the impressions of the world. So Being is a receiving force.

 If there is no consciousness, no I, there is no eye; instead, there is a blindness that receives nothing more than itself... and there ought to be so much more.

Within this context of developing what Gurdjieff called consciousness, or real I, there was never an expectation — can never be an expectation — that this consists of one thing, a single aspect of Being. Thus, one cannot say that a human being, once they begin to live and become human — once they admit, to their inner order, the divine inflow — is one way or another way, or that there is a consistency or predictability to how this is. This is because a living human being may have, indeed, a single I, but many things— in fact, all things — are within it, so the manifestation by default requires a flexibility, and inventiveness, an unpredictability such that no one can know how such a person is.

At once, one who is enlightened by the divine inward flow is many things, and even all things, and must inhabit each one of them, because this is the requirement of a vessel which is a receiving force. It has not gained the right to exclude; in the same way that a camera lens allows everything that comes to its surface to fall through it, so must all the manifestations of Being fall through us into ourselves: good, bad, or indifferent, we must receive if we wish to Be.

 There is a foolish consistency in the ideas that people have about enlightenment and spiritual truth, as though it were one way and not every way. But Truth requires us to become transparent, so that every way manifests, and there is no restriction in any direction.

One inhabits; and inhabitation requires a comprehensive understanding of manifestation, not one limited by the way this and that ought to be.

 So don't be hypnotized by a golden image of what spiritual mastery is. Live a life; and know that life from within, honoring the divine influence that creates it. Truth does not look like one expects it to; and every expectation blinds us to truth.


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