More on Pali tradition
Comment on More on Pali Tradition
21.11.09 at 10:20 am
James, thanks for this.
I dont have much experience in this area. But years ago, I heard an old hippie tell of how he dropped acid and went for a walk in the local park.
He said he had an experience of merging with the universe.
When he ‘came down’ he reported being so depressed that he coped by going on a two week methamphetamine run. When that ended, he was *really* depressed.
Here’s what puzzled me as a listener:
If he merged with the universe, how could he remember the episode?
If he totally merged, wouldnt he have had some sort of blackout or amnesia due to nothing of his ’self’ being left to recall the episode, let alone feel depressed at having lost access to it?
Unfortunately, I lacked the confidence to ask the question. He told the story as part of a lecture, and I did not know how to frame the question without sounding like some kind of smart ass.
But thats a matter that has puzzled me ever since:
Folks report these merger experiences, some even manage to create lucrative careers out of it.
But if someone has completely merged with the universe or the absolute or what ever one calls it–wouldnt it be impossible to remember, due to no trace of self being left behind to witness the merger and recall it afterwards?
Ive always wonered whether, if someone had a complete merger of self and ground of all being, it would result in amnesia or a blackout.
Or perhaps one could only recall it by a bit of observing self re-condensing as one EXITS the merger,as one loses it, rather than whilst in it.
Its a bit like seeing the stars in the night sky. Many of them no longer exist in situ because they’re burned out. What we see is the light from dead starts, just now reaching us.
Perhaps this is what hinders understanding. Perhaps the people who talk most of enlightement are talking of past experience, not present experience, as they could only catch a glimpse as they exited, precisely because their egoic selves were re-condensing, both making it possible to experience the departure of the merger and recollect it as it departed.
So folks earning fortunes talking of the power of Now, are talking of the power of a previous Now, a stale ‘Now’
Imagine being able to make a fortune convincing people that moldy sandwiches are fresh. But thats what these gurus are doing.