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..:: Desire ::..

By

Alan Schneider

                                                    

            Much has been discussed in the previous chapters regarding the interaction of karma (as the ultimate essence of the physical universe), Maya (as the sensory impression generated by karma), and the phenomenon of ego attachment to the senses in Maya, which reinforces the illusory perception of a world separated into objects in our human awareness. The time has now come to examine the specific mechanism of attachment in our world, and the condition of desire.  

            Desire is intimately linked to sensory gratification. This gratification loop has already been presented at length in the discussion of biological homeostasis, however, a slightly altered approach to the argument presented in those passages can be very useful in understanding the action of desire in our awareness. 

            The total karmic environment surrounding and acting on the senses, the   Soul, and the ego kernel can be thought of as an envelope of probability, or quantum envelope. This envelope has a very complex unified shape in Divine Consciousness, which is continuously created and modified by the action of the Tetragrammaton in response to the feedback which the Logos is receiving through the Soul, regarding the level of the ego kernel’s spiritual development. In other words, as our developing  spiritual awareness increases through Enlightenment, God modifies and releases our Karma accordingly, by continuously changing the shape of the quantum envelope, which  literally is the Karmic physical world around us. This either increases or decreases the probability of specific events manifesting in our sensory awareness, compelling the ego kernel to modify expectations and perceptions regarding the meaning of many different kinds of personal activity, including attachment to sensory gratification. 

            Most people have passed through periods in their lives where there really did seem to be a predictable relationship between personal action and sensory gratification. The act of manipulating the separate objects around them, including both other people and themselves, had a high “probability” of producing a desirable sensory outcome, based on many repeated trials. Homeostasis was attainable and became the first priority of awareness for that reason. And most people have also had, or will have, the bitter experience of watching those glittering illusory periods slowly, or abruptly, disappear, to be replaced by successive intervals of frustration and disappointment. Sometimes, there were apparent “causes” for these transitions, usually triggering renewed levels of increasingly determined manipulation to reestablish homeostasis. Frequently there were not, which in turn triggered equally determined manipulations of ego awareness designed to discover “hidden” causes. For many human beings, the desire to achieve  gratification becomes and remains the determining force in their lives, regardless of how much or little success they experience. In a few cases, frequently after all other avenues have been exhausted, the discovery of the true nature of gratification is realized through Enlightenment: the only real connection between ego determined action and gratification is Karma as determined by God, not in any way by the action itself! 

            An indulgent Logos can permit the desire for sensory gratification to be met more or less predictably on a temporary basis, even though this builds and strengthens the illusion of Maya and separation in the individual and the world. Why? If this condition is bound to increase suffering and delusion, why foster it? Why create human free will in a doomed, temporary physical vehicle? 

            Indeed, the world we live in seems to be filled with every kind of delusion, cruelty, shortcoming, and pathetic decline. Clearly, human awareness occurs under the most daunting conditions imaginable. It is in this very observation that the answer we are seeking is, as always, concealed with great finesse. Once again, it is our experience of the acute limitation within which we function that creates enormous difficulty in understanding the motives and action of Divine Consciousness in the design of the human condition. 

            As I have mentioned in previous chapters, human free will is only very relatively free. We do certainly have more active choice in the state of living Karma that we express than that of a rock or a plant, but compared to the action of God, we are very limited indeed. The Logos has to be understood first and foremost as an Unlimited Intelligent Condition – no restrictions at all. This is almost impossible for a human being to conceive of, but the condition can be grasped and described. 

            Almost everything that we do requires the expenditure of effort on many levels: mental effort to plan our activities, physical effort to carry them out, and additional effort to understand the outcomes attained and plan and act again, and again. God is not subject to any of this. The entire enormity of Creation described in these pages, particularly in Chapter Two, was achieved by the Creator not only completely effortlessly, but spontaneously. No planning or designing or intention as we know these things to be took place. This includes the manifestation of the Primal Void with which the physical  universe of Karma was constructed. There is not even any point in wondering whether or how long the Divine Consciousness may have been present before initiating Creation: God has simply always existed in a state of timeless perfection, and in this condition the question of the “time” at which Creation was begun is meaningless. Time is another illusory human limitation. The only reason that I represented Creation as occurring in a sequence of actions is that I had to for the sake of this written human communication, which is taking place in illusory linear Maya. The endless series of Spheres of Consciousness described in Chapter Five is much closer to the Truth. God is simultaneously present everywhere in all of them, including the Primal Void, where the Divine Presence is expressed not as Conscious Light, but as Negative Light, or Darkness.  

            Here we have the paradox of Creation. On one hand, God is the Supreme Absolute Truth – the sum total of all Expression. On the other hand, this Truth must necessarily include the expression of an Anti-Truth, or Anti-Christ, as Christianity claims. But the Ultimate Untruth cannot exist in parallel expression with the Supreme Absolute Truth – the two conditions are mutually exclusive. Yet, they must both occur all the same, in the Divine Expression of Totality. Because God is Love, rather than try to negate Negation, He simply permitted the Anti-Totality expression in the Daoist form, as the Monad! Why did God create this fragmented world of Illusion? Because Unconditional Love permitted no other outcome. We frequently inflict suffering upon each other as an expression of hatred: God permits the existence of suffering as an expression of Love. The closer one comes to the Creator through Enlightenment, as attachment to Maya is dispelled, the clearer that diametrical distinction in meaning becomes. We are here in separated Karmic form because we must be here. And the final, most concealed, mystery of our Creation and condition is that our fragmented consciousness in this Daoist universe both requires and proves that the unified Consciousness of God must exist as well. Without this relationship, even Illusion is impossible! 

            This is why the Creator manifests in the expression of Karma. And this modality has the great strength of permitting the simultaneous expression of both Illusion and Enlightenment in an infinite range of proportions. In the human expression, the relative levels of involvement in either condition are subject to gradual adjustment through the limited action of personal Free Will. The decision to seek Enlightenment in response to Karma and Maya determines to a very great extent how much we note suffering in this world. Because we are separated does not mean that all suffering is inevitable: it means that inner Peace is possible. The choice and the challenge is there in our human existence. 

            One additional discussion is required to complete the Illumination of the Divine Perspective on Karmic existence. For the sake of this communication, I must again resort to the progressive method of presentation in linear time, although that is an Illusion.  

            If one could determine a beginning of the woe of this world, it would seem to be in the emergence of the prey/predator relationship already mentioned at various points in this work. By now, I am sure that this is also something that the Seeker will recognize to be a Daoist expression like the many others highlighted earlier. I have repeatedly emphasized the Dao as the driving force at work in the Karmic universe, and the preceding paragraphs have brought forth the ultimate cause for the inevitable manifestation of Karma in this way. And this Karma also expresses through an infinite range of levels, not only in the multiplicity of forms detectable through the senses as Maya, but in a manifest range of evolutionary levels as well. This is the reason for the long history of carnal destruction as the mechanism of developmental change in the world, up to and including the present day of human violence and strife. We are Karma generated Karma processors. 

            The Karmic expression can be viewed as a progressive growing ground, or incubator, of Consciousness, with the occurrence of Enlightenment as one of the statistical outcomes. From the observational perspective of the human condition now, we can see evidence of a very limited development of Higher Consciousness, culminating in Samadhi, as the distal end of a very long sequence of brutal predatory “recycling” of Karma, through subsequent reincarnation. In Samadhi (and some related very high psychic experiences) the future progress of this process can be known: eventually, all of the Karma which creates Maya will be released by the combined Enlightenment of humanity and Grace of God, and all Consciousness will be reunited in Love in the Divine Condition. 

             Although Maya frequently shows us a world of meaningless abject suffering, this is another illusion. Every human expression of Karma, whether living or dead (or well or afflicted),  has a Soul, or Atma, and these Souls are all radiating from, and part of, the Collective Soul in Brahma. This is true whether Karma has permitted the Freudian Mind of the individual to know this beyond the illusion of Maya or not. The Atma of the human condition, and of the total condition of all Karma throughout Creation, is the growing, developing expression of Brahma.  No matter how much of the Atma is linked to ignorant (or aware) suffering, Karma is being released and Brahma is expanding. This expansion both culminates in and originates from the Supreme Absolute Truth, or Krishna, which means “Christ”, or “Pure in Form”. Brahma is the living expression of Divine Love radiating as Consciousness from God. We are Consciousness generated Consciousness processors. 

            Enlightenment permits the gradual perception of this relationship between Brahma and Atma to be known from the Divine Perspective as the sequence of Spheres of Consciousness described in Chapter Five. This is the infinite, timeless continuum of Consciousness in Manifest Expression, which is also described in Chapter Two by the Creation Diagram. From the perspective of God, this is the single progressive and interlinked manifestation of Divine Love in Krishna, and nothing is lost or cast off at any stage of this expression. In fact, suffering as perceived from Maya is another illusion, and this brings us back to the crux of the issue: attachment. We perceive suffering in our personal Maya, and the Maya of others, because we are attached to that perception! 

            What is the mechanism of this attachment? Why do we become so powerfully drawn into a fundamentally illusory condition, even when we know this to be the case on an “objective” level? There is what amounts to an integrated matrix of causes which creates and reinforces attachment. Some of this matrix is directly linked to the physical body of Karma, and is a part of that Karma. Some of the elements of the matrix are also typical of the structure of the Freudian Mind and ego as phenomena in and of Maya. Let us examine this matrix, which constructs the Great Walls of the Illusion confronting the ego kernel and the Atma. 

            The physical body of Karma has many inherent tendencies to affect the ego kernel and Atma in very persuasive ways. We have all experienced hunger, thirst, pain, illness, excitement, sexual arousal, emotion, frustration, and gratification, to name a few of the experiences of Maya which are, in fact, originating in the Karmic Vibration of the physical body. These impressions also seem to manifest according to fairly consistent circumstances, which reinforces their power as attention directing forces in the mind. If there did not seem to be a predictable relationship between Karmic stimulus in the body, Karmic action directed by the mind on the basis of repeated experience, and the maintenance of the mental perception of homeostasis through gratification in Maya, our illusion would collapse before it even is constructed. Gratification in Maya would be seen as such an erratic occurrence that no effort would be perceived as relevant to obtaining the condition.  

            In fact, there do seem to be many gratification experiences that are predictable enough to warrant our ongoing attention and involvement in the world of Maya, so much so that we are very frequently enmeshed in these actions throughout life in an endless series of Pavlovian loops which hypnotize the Mind through continual distraction, drawing attention away from any other experience or consideration. We walk through incarnation in the belief that this trance is reality – if we bother to wonder about or believe anything at all –  until the bubble finally bursts in disaster, or old age, or death. And the question of how well the trance works is seldom an issue: the great masses of people in the world live lives of “quiet desperation”, and this is still sufficient to keep the mouse of the mind vigorously running inside its self-created wheel. This is the baseline condition of Karma as manifest in the human form, and because Karma is God in Multiplicity, this system literally results from the action of Divine Consciousness and is very powerful. As mentioned in the preceding paragraphs, the condition of the development of Brahma is still being performed at this unaware level, and the Soul/Atma is evolving in Consciousness. The power of Karma and the resultant Maya is not futile at any level, and always serves the Godhead. After everything is said and done, even when we are called by the Atma, Enlightenment is a choice, not a requirement. And many are  not listening... 

            And if we are called out of our trance into awakening, then what? Then a life long struggle ensues to continue the work of Enlightenment in the face of a Karmic system which is still very much active on both the personal and social levels, and the term “struggle” puts it very mildly! The ego resists the awakening process at every level with remarkably dogged determination, longing to return to the sweet sleep of delusion in any from and at any price. This is the second arena of Enlightenment: the battle for the control of the Mind. 

            The Freudian ego is both created and trained through early childhood conditioning to intensely monitor all the senses at all times, with the goal of ongoing homeostasis and gratification as the only relevant criteria involved. Because this process begins at a time when the infant Karmic physical brain is still developing synoptic junctions, and the training process which is creating those junctions by association is frequently very negative in character, the ego becomes a quasi permanent structure, represented by complex synoptic pathways,  located in the prefrontal lobe of the brain. This process is functionally complete by the onset of adolescence. Sexual activity and interest then customarily results in another series of additional, and frequently negative, reinforcements which complete the formation and encapsulation of the ego by the time that late adolescence and adulthood are reached. And we must bear in mind that the ego so formed is still ultimately only an illusory social fiction! 

            The term association is very important in understanding ego functioning. This is the basis of the apparent success of the gratification loop which holds Maya together. Not only are we trained to identify many of these loops through Karmic environmental cues, but we are trained to expect and believe without question that the outcome of gratification should more or less consistently result from the correct execution of these loops. And we are also trained to believe that we are inherently entitled to successful action, will always achieve successful action, and most importantly, that we are the controller of the process. Finally, on the basis of many, many reinforcements of many gratification actions, the ego is convinced of its durability, worth, and sole manifestation as our only identity. In the absence of Enlightenment, I am my ego, and gratification is my purpose. 

            Because Maya is an Illusion, the condition of the ego which maintains it presents many perceptual and logical construction flaws. The ego has no answer to the question of death, and fears death for this reason. The ego is degraded by failure and confusion. And the ego is isolated through encapsulation in the Mind and must continually manipulate awareness to avoid confronting this very uncomfortable condition. The need to avoid the recognition of this isolation at any level of experience is, in reality, the hidden motive for all the ego’s activities. The acknowledgment of isolation is the beginning of the deconstruction process of the ego, and this is the “death” that it really fears – the death of the associative conditioning which constitutes it’s only basis of existence. 

            Many people dread the condition of boredom. This is the first stage of the threat of isolation recognition, wherein the lack of an immediate gratification action leaves the ego unoccupied, and undistracted by the senses. If the ego remains in this detached state long enough, the perception of a very uncomfortable internal void begins to develop. This is the first perception of isolation, and is generally sufficient motivation for the creation of almost any activity, even a manifestly self destructive one, as an escape mechanism. No wonder that prison is such an effective threat! 

            The ego is the prisoner of the senses, not the controller of experience. It is the need to avoid confronting this devastating realization that underlies all attachment to sensory experience in Maya. In comparison, the Yogi discovers that all of the supposedly inflexible demands of the Karmic body and the senses are really subject to complete personal interpretation, even eating, sleeping, and breathing. This is possible because Karma is the real and only controller of all the experiences of the senses, not the ego, and not any structure of the Freudian Mind. In the practice of Yoga, the awareness and attention of the ego kernel, residing at the forefront of the Soul, is drawn away from the Freudian mind and the physical senses, and turned inward toward the Jungian collective unconscious and the Atma. The bond to Divine Consciousness develops as this process continues, in turn causing both the recognition of the action of Karma as the controller of sense experience, and the release of that Karma through the awareness of the Atma, then Brahma, and finally Krishna. As the identification with the ego as the source of being is supplanted with the awareness of God as the source of being, the ego begins to disintegrate, finally assuming the real status of a communications interface with the senses in Maya. This is a much more appropriate, healthier condition which supports non-attached functioning and permits the awareness of the Truth that God sustains all consciousness and existence. With this awareness comes the ability and willingness to live Consciously in Dharma through God, rather than inadvertently through Karma, and deluded in Maya. 

            The process described above has a sequence of development which is predetermined by personal Karma, and frequently evolves over many years (and lifetimes) of struggle, practice, and finally discipline, in the science of Yoga. The relationship with Higher Consciousness is not one of conceptual ideas and belief, but is the attainment of the progressive and literal experience of the Atma, Brahma, and the Logos in our awareness, superseding the experience of the senses and the remnants of the ego. This requires a complete reconditioning of awareness that involves the “death” of the Freudian ego – we literally must die and be reborn into an entirely new consciousness of Enlightenment to follow this path as Seekers, and this is both fearful and difficult. Yet this is achieved as attachment is recognized and replaced with Enlightened consciousness. 

            One of the characteristics of Enlightenment is the absence of desire, resulting from the release of attachment, through Yoga. Desire is actually generated by ego attachment to sensory gratification. Desire is the wish to perpetuate attachment and the experience of gratification. Once the attachment to any sensory condition is established, desire becomes and remains active in the Mind as a continual background condition, whether or not gratification is experienced. Desire may be conscious or unconscious in the Freudian mind. Desire may itself become an object of attachment, in the form of an obsession or fixation. Above all, desire is a conditioned response which distracts the attention of the Freudian ego from the recognition of isolation, and the ego kernel from recognition of the Soul and Higher Consciousness. Interestingly enough, unfulfilled desire – the basis of the “quiet desperation” mentioned earlier in this Chapter – is even more effective as a distraction than gratified desire. At least in gratification, the ego is satisfied with the required completion of the loop, and may rest for a short time in the “little peace” thus obtained before resuming the hunt. But the difference here is still only one of degree, and amounts to the distinction between relative levels of success in escaping the recognition of the Truth. 

            Desire is integrated in the Mind at a higher, more complex level than simple attachment, and represents a more powerful escape mechanism for this reason. Desire can literally become the existential condition of life, always calling the individual toward sensory distraction and away from Soul/Self recognition, and consuming enormous amounts of time and awareness during incarnation in the process. This is why the single condition of desire, and the delusional process of desire action, are highlighted with such persistence and determination by the Guru as the enemy of Enlightenment. No other mental phenomenon is so obstructive to spiritual growth. Even the desire to obtain Enlightenment is obstructive to Enlightenment! As soon as my awareness becomes fixated on any condition that is perceived as not present at any time in consciousness, an illusory object of external gratification, a desire object, is created in the mind. This means that I am now separate from the object of my desire, and must obtain the object to experience gratification. But I cannot become enlightened by seeking attachment to an “object”, even of Enlightenment: I can only become Enlightened by releasing attachment, and desire, to all objects of sensory gratification... 

            The term “yoga” literally means an ox yoke, and spiritually means “union”, specifically union with Divine Consciousness. Yoga begins with the postures of asana,  and includes many other forms of meditation and spiritual realization, all carefully attuned to the release of Karma and desire. The work of Yoga and the attainment of the experience of the Truth is so difficult and demanding that success in this practice requires a lifetime of dedication, with no other priority placed before or beyond that of Enlightenment. The rewards to our awareness are certainly there, because nothing in the sensory condition compares to the fantastic knowledge and experiences of the collective unconscious, culminating in the truly amazing experience of Samadhi. Even though there is no requirement laid down that one must complete this process in any set interval, and in fact Karma tends to determine our rate of progress, it is still relevant to note the obstacles before us. So it is with the condition of Desire. Even if all we are cost is our time, this is indeed a high price to pay.  

            This concludes the discussion of the mechanism of Desire. The next Chapter focuses in depth on the process of Yoga as the alternative to attachment and the path of Enlightenment. An explanation is given of the action of Yoga in human awareness, and description of the methods by which the many Yoga practices release Karma and attachment, enabling union with the Logos.

       (Copyright 2009, by Alan Schneider)

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