When I insisted, some years back, on having the statement “…we can view the afterlife as a constant progression toward the reunion with the god consciousness that we put aside to practice the art of being human” appear on the back cover jacket copy of Eternal Life And How To Enjoy It, I was debating the phrasing with some staff member at my publishing company who queried my use of the word ‘consciousness’. I insisted because I felt it represents an important distinction.
It removes ‘god’ from the notion of a discrete being, a figurehead to worship, an entity to fear or a deity to placate, the kind of category cultures we call ancient seem to have devised for ‘him’. My own spiritual journey had deposited me into an understanding of the manifest universe as a series of fluid states of consciousness, each of which came ready made with landscapes, communities and belief systems, all of which we cycled through on our passage to completion. And the area in which divinity seemed to manifest most completely was that sea of light, that radiant void in which everything existed in potential but had no detectable shape or mass.
Whilst in that area, sometimes in meditation and sometimes while obe, one recognized that ‘omniscience’ and ‘omnipresence’ were available in direct proportion to one’s willingness to release the identity of a separate ego and limited brain. One seemed to know what god knew, one seemed to understand why existence was exciting and yet futile, why cultures were created only to be destroyed, why the immense complexities of planetary and galactic formation were mere child’s play, and why the joys and sufferings of beings in bodies were ultimately of no significance. And then, when the energy for such exploration waned, often in a matter of what might be termed ‘seconds’, and one’s vibration slipped to that of thought and then emotion and then the weighty body dragged down by gravity, one’s experience of the ‘godhead’ became a memory, savoured and then doubted by the ego with a brain.
I ponder these issues regularly. Often they are brought to mind by books of a literary nature, where creative artists muse on their relationship, or lack of it, to ‘god’. Often they are rebelling against some dogmatic god of organized religion, and on occasion the god of political ideology (cf Arthur Koestler’s The God That Failed on communism). Certainly we are currently experiencing the collapse of faith in the god of free market capitalism. Artists, I have found, retain a great deal of pride in their ability to have rejected the god of organized religion and proudly set sail on the seas of agnosticism and atheism, believing that intelligent men of moral stature can create and sustain democratic and just societies. And as a citizen of one such society I can only applaud and praise such continued efforts. We know very well that that eternal vigilance is the price we must pay for fair and just societies, and that even that focus will not prevent the continued depredations of corrupt elites and their intelligence agency enforcement arms.
With such creative types, and scientists often fall into this category, the god of religion is regularly replaced by the god of creativity and much is sacrificed on the altar of the novel, opera, ballet, art exhibit and experiment. As a functioning artist myself I am thrilled by the ongoing creation of great works in all genres, but the belief systems which seem to sustain the artists involved strike me as at best a knee-jerk reaction to the cultural dominance of religion, a superficial homage of post-war existentialism, and a heedless plunging into the self-indulgent pleasures of bohemianism. And mostly it seems to result in a fog of alcoholic and drug addicted despair, however well phrased or etched.
‘God’ does not live or die on the basis of human suffering and stupidity, whether modern or ancient, but the dependence on, faith in, or rejection of, deities composed of fear and desire, must be overcome so that the inner journey to the god consciousness can begin or resume. That it is a journey well worth undertaking I can personally attest, although when ‘I’ feel myself there the whole notion of ‘I’ and ‘thou’ is laughably absurd. That comfort zone of personal identity has had its boundaries erased by experience quite beyond the abilities of words.
One is energized, elated and ultimately dumbfounded. The most that can be said, despite falling quite quite short, is that the god consciousness is ‘all that is’ harmoniously vibrating together, and the ‘you’ which has joined is an indistinguishable cell of that enormous structure, a cell that is so busy ‘being’ it no longer has the need to ask why or why not. At least, not until later when the bliss becomes, through shrinkage, a mere blip of memory.