THE GOAL OF CONSCIOUSNESS RESEARCH
Q: Is that why the Upanis hads say that the effort of the unenlightened, however scholarly they might be, are like the blind leading the blind when it comes to guiding others in the knowledge of the Self?
A: Yes. According to the Indian Masters who have contributed most to the study of the mind, Turiya or the fourth state of consciousness, experienced in the mystical trance, is the real state of human awareness and the other three below it, namely deep sleep, dream and the normal wakeful state, are delusive.The normal state lends substance to a false appearance which hides the true Reality.
Q: Then research on consciousness should mean study of ones Self?
A: In truth,this is what the ancient sages and seers proceeded to do in their search for enlightenment. It is for this reason that during recent times there has been hardly any new addition to the brilliant galaxy of enlightened prophets and sages of the past. This is also the reason why there has beenno fresh accumulation of knowledge of the mystical state of consciousness. When our study of the outer world, during the same period, has yielded such a rich harvest in transforming the life of human beings, why do we find the doors tightly shut in our exploration of the inner realm?
Q: This is the crux of the problem, I'm sure. What is your explanation?
A: As one whohas been granted a brief glimpse into this profound Mystery, I can say with confidence, that no amount of objective study of consciousness, undertaken over the next hundreds of years, with the methods employed at present, would lead the learned any nearer to the solution of the enigma. On the contrary, except for the hundreds of volumes of confusing data that would result, the investigation would make it even more bewildering than before.
Q: Butwhat is the reason for this?
A: Research on consciousness demands a new approach, because it marks a new phase inthe career of humanity. Evolving man must now shift his attention from the outer to the inner world, make his own body the laboratory and reverently approach the Spirit within to instruct him in the rudiments of this science.
Q: Manypeople are eagerly waiting for this to take place. There seems to be an instinctive longing in many to return to nature, for instance, and to breakaway from the highly complex, hectic life of today. Isn't all this just an indication of a coming revolution in thinking?
A: Yes, the stage is being set for this radical change in the direction of human effort from the outer to the inner world. The learned are not able to read the signs, because the future is entirely shut from their view, and they have no idea of the coming revolution in the life of humankind as a complement to the evolutionary change that has occurred within.
Q: Can you describe this evolutionary change that you believe has occurred within?
A: It will take some time, but it has to do with the existence of a potential in the brain that can transform human life and bestow undreamed of intellectual, super-sensory and artistic gifts to individuals in a manner beyond imagination at present.
Q: Butas you have already said, most of the intellectuals have no grounding in mysticism, so they continue to apply to it the same methods of analysis and criticism to which they are accustomed in other branches of knowledge.
A: It is asad commentary on the academic life of our time that a subject treated with respectful attention and reverential regard by the greatest intellectuals of the past, including such giants as Plato and Newton, should appear sotrivial and unimportant to them that they deem it beyond their dignity to study it with the care and attention which it needs.
Q: You are considered to be a rebel to many of the popular ideologies of our time. Perhaps if you were to put your ideas in the language of the intellectuals, they would be more acceptable to the readers in the United States.
A: I have made no secret in my books of the fact that my education has been poor and that all I am writing is from inspiration, which needs a dive into the depthsof my own being to receive it.
I have never made any claims of infallibility and have repeatedly said that every word I am writing should be weighed and put to rigid test before it is accepted. It is for this reason that I am so keen to lay the foundation of an Experimental Center, to validate my views about the evolutionary mechanism in the humanframe.
Q: Yourideas need to be expressed by scholars who are trained in the language of academics. Without such credentials, it might be impossible to makeany real headway in the West.
A: Either thator else what we need are the resources to broadcast our views far and wide. I am putting my ideas in the language of the common man and woman ratherthan in that of the intellectuals for the simple reason that, in the firstplace, I am not capable of writing in the discursive style peculiar to scholars. Secondly, I wish my message to be easily intelligible to all those who read it.
Q: Do you believe it is possible to communicate your ideas in the language of modern psychology?
A: Perhap snot. Modern psychology is bristling with internal conflicts and controversies, and also the pulls and pressures from individual authorities, each contradicting the other. How can a study based on a mistaken conception of mind, with excessive emphasis on the beast and chilling silence over the god in man, provide a suitable vehicle for explaining the profundities of consciousnessor its triumphant march from the sub-human to the super-human plane?
Q: Then what is the solution?
A: The moment it is demonstrated that the human brain is still in a state of organic evolution in a pre-planned direction, not only the current theory of evolution but also psychological systems, based primarily on the animal origin of mind and not on its infinitely intelligent cosmic character, will come toppling to the earth.
How can were concile the divine nature of consciousness with some of the revolting explanations offered by psychologists? The universe is a vast amphitheater and the dramas enacted by consciousness, on this stage from one end to the other, infinitely varied in plot and action, are yet closely interwoven and interconnected in a manner far beyond the grasp of the puny human intellect. Mankind will have to rise to dizzy heights of evolution before she can begin to comprehend the bewildering play of Life.
From Euclidean space we have come to the curved space of Relativity. But there are already indications to show that this is not the end. Who knows what new surprises are in store for astrophysicists in the years to come? It is a fallacy to suppose that we have come to the end of the knowledge of the mind.
Q: You claim to be in possession of extraordinary knowledge, is that not true?
A: I have never laid any claim to a higher position than the one I possess. In fact, Ihave emphatically tried my utmost to make it clear that mystical experience does not represent a vision of God but only a passage into a new dimension of consciousness in which it wears an aspect of glory and sovereignty which is not present on the human plane.
I have also repeatedly asserted that in all other aspects I belong to the class of normal human beings with the frailties and vanities common to human nature. Nowhere in my writings have I made any claim to sainthood or nearness to God or to a superhuman stature, as is often done by godmen to point out the gulf that exists between them and the normal run of human beings.
Q: Butyou do claim to reside in the transcendental state of consciousness, doyou not?
A: Yes, butit has always been my endeavor to make it clear that the transcendental state of consciousness, experienced in the form of ecstasy by prophets and mystics throughout the past, does not signify a special favor from the Deity. It is only a more extended dimension of the perceptual faculty towards which mankind is evolving irresistibly through the operation ofan evolutionary mechanism in the body, designated as Kundalini by the Indian sages of the past.
Q: Asfar as I know, this is the first time that mystical consciousness, or the organic mechanism leading to it, have been defined in this way, in the language of reason, divested of the supernatural and mythical.
A: That is my view, exactly. I have, at the same time made no secret of the fact that knowledge of Kundalini represents a monumental discovery of the illuminate of India, and that I am only presenting this knowledge in the language of modern science. I have also said that the interpretations I am placing on it would be beyond my capacity but for a strange dispensation of fate, beyond my comprehension, by which I became the participant in an experience that unfolded the secret to me.
Q: Secret? Can you expand on this a bit?
A: What I am trying to emphasize in all my work is that we have our existence in two worlds, the world of matter and the world of mind. As the result of an inquiry that has persisted through a prodigious span of time, ever since the dawn of reason, we have come in possession of a huge amount of knowledge of the material world, which is available for the study by any one of us. But the study of the world of spirit needs entry into a new plane of consciousness and a super-sensory channel of cognition, which are slowly coming into the possession of man.
Q: The secret, then, is that mankind is slowly coming into possession of this super-sensory channel of cognition, is that correct?
A: Yes, through evolution. This is the purpose of the mystical trance or the trans human states of consciousness exhibited by the prophets and mystics of the world.They sung praises of the glory of God because the plane of being where they arrived is a plane of splendor, beauty and transport, surpassing anything conceivable by a normal mind.
Q: Buteven so, if I understand you correctly, it is a plane of being just a little higher than that of normal human beings.
A: You are perfectly correct. Those men and women who arrogate to themselves a transhuman stature or position of authority, as incarnations of, or surrogates for,the Divine, must have a poor opinion about the staggering dimensions ofthe universe or the inconceivable proportions of its Almighty Creator.
Q: Because it is simply an evolutionary advance of the normal state of consciousness?
A: Yes. This attitude could be justified in the prophets, sages and seers of the past, when the earth alone bounded the vision of man and he had no idea of what gigantic worlds lie beyond, and what a countless host of colossal suns and planets dwells in space. But from a godman of today, the statements of the kind which are made in the Scriptures of the past should be an affront to the intelligence of one who has even a passing idea about the extent of the universe or possibility of other, far superior, forms of life residing in it. There are some, even among the learned, who believe in such self-concoctedtales, but they scoff at the rational explanations which I offer.
Q: What about the future of humankind?
A: From mypoint of view, the future luminaries of the race, adorned with transhuman consciousness, would still be occupied with the exploration of the Mysteryof Creation in the higher, to us, imperceptible planes of being, in the same way as we are now occupied with the exploration of the material universe. The present-day concepts about the mind, its behavior, urges and appetites, are mere capricious intellectual excursions into a territory which needs another channel of cognition to explore.
Q: Iwould like to know more about this other channel of cognition.
A: You said yourself that it was a plane of being that is a little higher than that of normal human beings, and that is perfectly correct. But it is nothing to merit comparison or equality with the infinite majesty and splendor of the Lord. It is a variation of almost the same kind as we observe when we rise in the scale of life from the lower species to the higher ones.
It amuses me to find that people in general, including scholars, sometimes, raise mystics and enlightened saints to the stature of gods who cease to be humans, belonging to a world of superhuman dimensions and possibilities, where they can defy the laws of nature, change the fate of common men and women or do whatever they please.
This is a serious error which stands as an impediment in the understanding of the mystical trance and in placing this extraordinary state of mind on a rational footing.It is simply the addition of another channel of perception, designed by Nature for every human being.
Q: But you still insist that it is necessary for science to undertake research on consciousness?
A: There will soon be a time when the evolution of consciousness will be taken up by scholars in all its different aspects, spiritual, psychological, sociological and biological. When once the experiment I propose is confirmed, there will be no subject, I am sure, which will receive as much sustained attention from scholars of every shade and color, and the rank and file of science,as this.
But the most colossal task in front of the erudite would be to explain the evolution of mind in terms of the organic evolution of the brain. As far as I cansee, it shall take long spans of time to cover each single step in the territory of consciousness.
Q: Then you do welcome the efforts of scholars and psychologists to write on consciousness,to the best of their knowledge and skill.
A: Of course, I welcome it most certainly. But in fairness to all, I must point out thatexcept in the case of those who have experienced the transformation, no attempt made by a scholar, merely with the exercise of his intellect, how ever versatile and learned he might be, can fathom the mystery.
How does Eternal Consciousness come to be embodied and then rise, step by step, through a eonian spans of time, to the realization of its own sovereignty?This is a riddle so profound that it is hard even to gauge its proportions.I must also add that present-day ideas about psychology, which emanated from Freud and others, offer only short-range explanations.
These explanations will be subject to radical change from time to time, as more and more knowledge is gained by the illuminate of the future about the nature and working of the mind and the organ of its expression, namely the brain.
Q: Your opinion of modern psychology is rather unflattering.
A: I have written extensively on this subject, but we can compare the present views of psychologists to the ideas of alchemists before the modern science of chemistry came into existence. The human intellect, not unoften, takes delight in providing explanations even for those phenomena which are beyond its probe, as for example, the existence of God and the origin of the universe, the nature of the soul and life after death.
These eternal riddles have strongly drawn the human mind from the dawn of reason to this day without ever finding the right answer that could solve them once and for all. This is also the case with the riddle of the mind.
Q: You believe that the experiment you propose will furnish the solution?
A: It is my endeavor to divest mystical ecstasy of ancient superstition and modern intellectual confusion both by drawing attention to the biological factors responsible for it. Because this objectification of the phenomenon hasnever been attempted before, the academic world is still unaware or incredulous of it. That shows the entirely unsuspected nature of the disclosures made.
From my pointof view, mystical ecstasy is a human experience, the outcome of an organic process at work in the brain, which signifies the first beginning of transhuman capacities in man. Except for the organic changes occurring in the subtle levels of the neuronic structures, science, as it exists today, can have no direct knowledge of the subjective nature of this experience.
Q: If that is the case, then no intellectual formulations about it are possible at this time.
Written by: Gopi Krishna
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