Sunday, January 09, 2011

Everything Matters

Nothing Matters

Everything Matters Exquisitely

Nothing Matters Exquisitely

"The consciousness is the intelligence; the intelligence is the soul; the soul is the spirit; and the spirit is God. Therefore consciousness is the divine element; consciousness is the God-part in us. And it is through consciousness that we become small or great, and through consciousness we either rise or fall, and through consciousness we become narrow or we expand."

Hazrat Inayat Khan

The above four stages of consciousness contain my very first lessons in metaphysics and spirituality. The fellow who explained them to me could be seen as my very first teacher, though that did not last very long. He was a very strange guy who was convinced that demonic possession was the cause of most mental illnesses. That would have been okay except that he worked as a counselor at the local mental health clinic and tended to tell clients this. Never the less he did give me the above, which I have used as a bench mark ever since.

Let's go through it.

Everything Matters: Think of your immediate environment and how you feel about it. How important is it to you. How much do you invest in demanding that the environment, the people you know, the things you do, conform to a certain standard that you have set? This is the stage of Everything Matters and we all go through it. It is a stage of total self involvement in which we believe that our very limited world is all that there is.

Nothing Matters: Many people move from the above into nothing matters. I hear it a lot from people who are getting ready to push through. It is one of the stages that a teenager goes through when he/she begins to question the dictates of parents and other authority figures. It was the guiding light of the early alternative movement. It is a misunderstanding of Maya – the veil of illusion spoken of in the Upanishads. Never the less we all must go through this stage of suspecting everything around us if we are to move on to the further stages.

Everything Matters Exquisitely: This is a place where a lot of spiritual type people tend to stop and feel content, which is fine. It is a place in which the world has expanded, the horizon has been pushed back and many new ideas and feelings are now evident for the spiritual seeker. It is where you are totally immersed in the sunrise and feel the life energy all around you. It is also a place where compassion for others really begins to become important. And it is a place where one might establish a very rigid set of rules about life and the Universe, which are not as limited as those still in the Everything Matters stage but are none the less limiting.

Nothing Matters Exquisitely: Imagine gazing at that sunrise mentioned above, appreciating it, in the moment, but not being at all attached to it. It is a stage beyond all stages because one realizes something very important. All of this is transitory. Only the soul matters in the end.

The above is how I think of these four stages of consciousness. You are free to make up your own definitions of course. I often change how I explain them when I am working with someone. There really is no fixed explanation, they exist as they are and then we attempt to give value with our words. So do as you like. I am simply offering them to you as a gift, as I was given this gift 35 years ago. Sometimes we need these kinds of things to help us gauge where we are in the pursuit of understanding consciousness. As Pir O Murshid says above – it is through consciousness that we become narrow or we expand. Which, when you think of it, was exactly what Pir Vilayat continually taught.

I will be curious to hear your comments.

Love & Blessings, Musawwir