Everpresent Consciousness?

Greg Goode goode at DPW.COM
Thu Nov 13 10:58:22 CST 1997

At 09:45 PM 11/12/97 -0800, Jonathan Bricklin wrote ( > ):
>Greg Goode writes ( >> ):

>>I don't understand, could you please rephrase this one?
>  > "black*ins*, in which the memory of all but the last moment is
>What I'm trying to say is, assuming I had not gone mad--an unhuge
>assumption--perhaps I was experiencing an extended run of
>consciousness without consciousness of self (except the self as an *object*
>of awareness).  When sleep came, this consciousness witnessed only what was
>in front of my eyes:  i.e. blackness.  The question this raises for me is:
> when people fall into a dreamless
>sleep or black out, is it consciousness that is dropping out, or merely the
>sense of self, leaving consciousness intact, witnessing blackness?  If it
>is merely consciousness of self, then when the person "comes to" they are
>not coming to to
>consciousness per se, but consciousness of self.

OK, I see what you're saying.  If in deep sleep it IS consciousness
dropping out, then what is still there?  SOMETHING has to be there, or
there wouldn't be any registry of the coming and going of waking and sleep
states.  So if consciousness comes and goes, then maybe you can say that
awareness remains.

Ramesh Balsekar gives a hierarchy of consciousness which goes like this:

  (1) Consciousness at rest -- Nirguna Brahman
  (2) Consciousness in movement -- Non-localized consciousness, the Witness
  (3) Embodied consciousness -- I am
  (4) Attached consciousness -- I am this body, mind, etc.

Though Ramesh adheres to the ajata-vada theory of creation (i.e.,
non-creation), he interprets creation stories of the jiva as an evolution
from (1) to (4).  And the reverse process is the road to enlightenment.
Once a person gets a taste of (3), they are a seeker, and the process of
enlightnment is the successive dis-identification and non-localization of
consciousness.  That which is at stage (2) is witnessing stage (3).

Enlightenment is staying at (3), sometimes (2) if there's nothing to
witness.  (1) can not be described, because there are no appearances, no
world at all.

> Some etherized patients,
>example, have reported the experience of waking out of a void of a
>consciousness, and feeling their own self consciousness as "something in
>addition."  Does this not suggest that what we resume in the morning after
>night of dreamless sleep is not so much consciousness as a consciousness
>attached to a self.  Catching the self form as it comes out of this
>in-between state can be a
>profound experience.

Yes, many teachers say to watch out for this same thing that happens every
morning.  It is the movement from Balsekar's stage (2) to (3) to (4).  With
this model, you CAN say that you can witness consciousness, because it's
(2) witnessing the stages below it.


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