the farthest reaches of our consciousness
Nov 23, 1993 07:40 AM
Although it might seem that the physical principle of consciousness is
the most obvious, the most apparent, the easiest to study, a careful
look at it reveals it to be as mysterious as Atman.
Called Sthula Sharira, the physical is the lowest principle. We can go
no farther. We can express our consciousness in no deeper materiality
on a plane of consciousness than this. To push farther, we simple leave
the plane and pass on to a lower plane. There is no farther lower degree
of qualifying the sense of self, we have reached the end.
The physical is a mystery, in a sense, since it consists of something
that is apart from what the senses (the Linga Sharira) perceives. It
is sometimes not considered a principle, and at other times is
combined with the senses, with the astral, to be considered together
as a single principle.
When the principles include the physical, we have full consciousness,
and are in possession of all its necessary elements. Each principle is
important and we are incomplete until we are in possession of all the
necessary parts to what makes us a fully-manifest being on this plane.
The physical is somewhat hidden and secret, since we do not perceive
it directly. It gives us an acctual sense of place or locality; we are
locked in place. It is the ultimate degree of materiality, we have in
it objects *per se* with a reality of their own, apart from our sense
perception of them.
The physical, in the manifest world, is the mirror opposite of Atman.
In it, we have a distinct separateness for every being, with interaction
but not connectedness. The world is mayavic, easily misperceived, and
has an appearance of permanence and durability when really it is the
most subject to continual change.
This principle is part of an inseparable triad of Prana, Linga Sharira,
and Sthula Sharira, the fashioning power, the passive perception, and
the objects that are fashioned. The three compose the world of forms
and our participation in it. In the higher reaches of the Astral Light,
the Sthula Sharira is the recorder of events, the repository of images,
a passive library of images of things that were or things in
formulation for possible physical existence.
The physical could be called our experience of the most material state
of being, but paradoxically it is full of holes, of gaps, of errors and
approximations to what we would be. It is not a perfect media for the
expression of our consciousness. It is the ultimate, in fact, of
The physical is the root nature of materiality for our world. It is not
really ourselves anymore than Atman is. Atman is the shared One Life of
the informing being whose embodiment creates the world in which we live;
it is a consciousness that we share with that being and with each other;
it is not individually our consciousness. The same is true of the
Sthula Sharira. It is our life at its fullest extent, at the point where
it can reach no farther; and at the same time it is the One Life to
the billions of lifeatoms who call our embodiment their world.
In either case, we have reached the end of our scale of being on this
plane. At the physical, we are the informing life, the Atman, to the
lifeatoms that exist in and through us. This is the level where our
being transforms from the one to the many and becomes the informing
Hierarch for a world of lessor beings.
We have gone as far as possible as an individual consciousness *on
this plane,* and we can go no farther. Further effects by us on this
plane are only in and through the smaller lives that we host. But for
us, though, we can go farther. But this takes us out of this plane,
onto a lower plane. We can only go down so far before we have to pass
through a laya center and end up on a lower plane, where we exist in
the same *scale of being.*
Below the physical we drop through *mystery*, a sort of linking
principle, into the unmanifest planes of a lower plane. And in the
opposite direction, about our tenth or highest principle, we can push
upwards, we can rise through *mystery* into yet a higher plane. It is
not really possible to talk about this *mystery,* but it is there,
both behind and within everything.
If we look at our individual consciousness, as manifested in the
principles, it starts at Buddhi and ends as Linga Sharira, since the
two linking principles, the two that deal with our participation in
the multiple scales of being to life, to our participation in
hierarchy, are not really *individual* principles of consciousness.
The two linking principles, Atman and Sthula Sharira, are experienced
by us, but not individually ours alone. There is a sharing of
consciousness in them. They are the dual sides to the experience of
hierarchy, and passing beyond them, we drop off into unmanifestation.
They both link us to different scales of being, and represent yet
another way in which the life of the Boundless All is passed onward:
from a higher scale of being to us, at our scale, then from us onto
yet a lower scale of being.
We carry on the Golden Chain of life from one scale of being, through
us as a living link at our scale, down to the next, a lower scale.
Life is carried on in a multitude of ways, and this is one of them.
We have a responsiblity at three levels. First, to both give the
fullest, the most complete expression to the life of our god, the
creator of our world. Second, to fully express ourselves as we interact
with others in the world in which we find ourselves. And third, to pass
on the noblest qualities and virtues to those who might call us god,
our lifeatoms, the creatures of the world that exists due to our
informing life. We have an important role in the drama of life, and
should live the part with the best that we have to give.
Eldon Tucker (email@example.com)
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