Thursday, March 19, 2015

Sensation, presence, suffering, part II

I suppose there is a danger in presuming any progression in spiritual work; yet there is a path, and one cannot presume movement on the path without presuming progression. Aimless wandering will not do; and trying to dissolve oneself in an endless sea of bliss becomes, in the end, aimless wandering — doesn't it?

Sensation, presence, and suffering represent the manifestation of three-brained being according to the principle of awakened materiality (sensation) awakened intelligence (presence) and awakened feeling (suffering.)

Now, the first two elements in this triumvirate seem to have objective natures: sensation and non-sensation, presence and non-presence; but the third one seem subjective, because suffering and non-suffering seems so intensely subjective to us. "I" may not seem to have much of a personal stake in whether I sense or not — and "I" may not seem to have much of a personal stake in whether I am present or not; but when it comes to suffering, well, "I" certainly don't want to do that.

 In order to understand this question better, I need to understand suffering as a material fact — part of the fabric of the universe — and because I have always understood it from my subjective parts, that isn't really available. While the material (sensation) is acknowledged by science, and intelligence (presence) is employed by it, science has little or no place for feeling (suffering), once again, because it seems to embody a subjective nature. The fact that it has an objective nature tied to the root of the universe itself has never occurred to scientists, even though the receiving of a higher energy will, if it is done properly, absolutely verify this.

One might say that science has completely overlooked the significance of emotion and feeling in the manifestation of being. Intelligence and matter are, on the other hand, quite well understood. When Gurdjieff said that human beings are "third force blind," this is, in the broadest possible terms, what he was getting at. We don't see that suffering is an objective material force, that it arises at once in the creation of the universe. It has been here since the beginning; and no matter how "objective" the sciences become or see themselves as, human beings instinctively know this — because they encounter the hard physical reality of it on this level over and over again, even if they remain functionally unable to open to its meaning on a different one.

Once one understands sensation, one can fairly say that one understands there is no point in living without it — that, in fact, without the organic sense of being, one is not actually living, since one has no rooted conscious sensation of it. And once one understands presence, one can say that one understands there is actually no point in living without this either, since it is transformational in terms of its relationship to sensation and brings us to a moment where feeling can enter.

At that point, one realizes there is no point in living without suffering. This is the point at which one attains the marrow of the practice.

The phrase Thy will be done applies to all of the work on this path: I don't do it.

I come to it to participate.


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