Living is easy with eyes closed, misunderstanding all you see
It’s getting hard to be someone but it all works out
It doesn’t matter much to me
“Strawberry Fields Forever” (Lennon/McCartney)
I had an encounter a while back with an impatient driver behind me, honking their horn at me to pull out into traffic (whether or not I felt it was safe to do so). I won’t go into all of it, but their rather rude demands that I drive the way they thought I should put me in the state of mind where realisation happens. The question I was pondering was, “What did they think they would achieve by honking at me, when they had no idea what the situation even was?”
Eventually, I realised: they weren’t thinking anything at all, and they didn’t think, full stop. There was no reasoning involved, although if you had asked them, they probably could have come up with a justification on the spot, and believed it. The bottom line here is that they acted purely on some kind of programming that told them to “honk at other drivers when you’re annoyed with a driving situation” and they did it without conscious thought or awareness.
This led me to other realisations and understandings. I’m not going to go into a big thing about how hardly anyone is awake (which, even though it’s probably correct, is really neither here or there because this seems to be the way things are designed and balanced). I know that some people and spiritual traditions are all about how everyone should awaken, achieve enlightenment, become One With Everything, etc. etc., but I just do not see that this is at all realistic, likely, or even particularly desirable. It appears that Source/God/Consciousness/Whatever is perfectly content to have the vast majority of conscious beings unaware of their identity as Source. I don’t know the reason for that, but at the time of this writing, this seems to be the case, and I don’t really have much more to say on the topic. (I am not one of those evangelistic sorts who need to convert people or wake them up or convince them of anything, though I will admit, I’m not adverse to rattling cages now and then when the inspiration strikes.)
Since my encounter with the hornblower, I’ve been observing the unconsciousness all around me. I have known for a long time that the ego-self is pretty much just programming (beliefs, habits, etc.) and that for almost everyone, everything they do is reactive. I spent considerable time on the realisation that, as far as the actions of the ego-self go, free will is an illusion (like everything else).
As part of this, I have seen and realised, somewhat to my chagrin, how my own unconsciousness has directed my life narrative in the past, and in significant ways. I have seen how my structure of beliefs, expectations, and assumptions guided my entire life experience, and how my reality and experiences changed when those beliefs, expectations, and assumptions were altered or dissolved.
And, later, as part of a long chain of realisations and shifts in perspective, it became very clear to me that the reality we experience when we are asleep, unconscious, is vastly different from that which we experience when we are awake, when we are lucid…. but that, I suspect, is another essay for another day.
Some potentially related posts: