Monday, August 31, 2009


The term monological essentially means that there is one fixed reality that our senses and awareness tap into. We have occasional experiences with dreams or visions or even stimulants that temporarily change our consciousness and alter our awareness but we view them as just that. Temporary and not real. The universe in all its infinite complexity, from subatomic particles to billions of galaxies billions of light years away, is real and is what it is, fixed and defined. And, we believe, we look out upon it, experience it, and live within it, reacting to it, often at odds and in fear of it. We believe that our senses effectively mirror and reproduce a fixed objective reality existing independently of us.

But to understand contemporary enlightenment, you must understand that a monological view of the universe is simply not correct. There is not one fixed, unassailable view of the universe. As surprising and perhaps even ridiculous as it sounds, reality is not fixed, it is co-created, by you and every other sentient being. Because we humans are biologically similar, we share the same senses and experience a similar consensus reality. But other life forms do not and their consensus reality is no more or less valid than our own.

In earlier postings, particularly those referencing duality and non duality, I briefly explained that the universe and all objects within it have no form, color, feel, taste, smell, or sound. Those features all exist solely in our awareness and vary based upon the being experiencing them. Everything that we see, feel, taste, smell or hear or even think about is our awareness, by us and for us. Though we believe there is subject and object, there is not. They are one. We are those features. They are our awareness. So everything we know and have ever and will ever experience about the universe is our awareness. Do you see that nothing we have ever experienced is outside of our awareness? And that our awareness and every object of our awareness whether a grain of sand or a million galaxies are one, not two.

So am I saying that your awareness creates the universe? Of course not. That is not insight, that is monumental narcissism. The true nature of the universe and infact every object within it, is beyond our knowledge. But its apparent nature, everything that we know and likely can ever know, is not fixed, or monological. It is co-created by life. We are the universe looking at and defining itself. So the mirror metaphor I used previously was not really complete. We are more than the "reflective ability" of the universe. We further co-create and define and give meaning to the image, to our reality. All of us, as well as our culture, institutions and everything else that we are.

Does this sound counter intuitive, even preposterous? Why wouldn't it when you have lived in a universe of dualism, isolated subjects viewing an infinite number of objects. In the earlier postings, I hoped I cracked the foundation of dualism for you. If you can accept for a moment that your awareness is what gives the universe form, color, feel, sound, taste and smell, in fact those features are your awareness, you will see that your awareness, as the co-creator of reality, not only makes sense but it could not be any other way. Remember, I am not saying that when you look at a tree, you create it. That tree and all of its components, all the way down to its atomic waves or particles or quantum relationships, exists in some fashion, but truly beyond our senses and understanding. What we see and feel and think and know about it, what makes it a tree and everything that implies, is exclusively us and our awareness, in the same way that the visual and sensory images of our dreams are us and our awareness. One, not two. Our awareness is the universe experiencing itself.

We should not look out upon the universe as a finished work of art. We are in fact the canvass upon which all of its objects arise and the paints that express their color and texture. And there is a canvass for every being that is aware.

Do you understand, even for a moment, even in a flash? That is contemporary enlightenment.