According to ancient knowledge, men have the possibility to experience four basic states of consciousness – basic, because every one of these states have different degrees. Two of them are natural- that means experienced by everyone. The other two can’t be spontaneous, and represent the result of a conscious evolution developed through a path dedicated to inner research. The fours states of consciousness are the sleep, walking state, self-consciousness and objective consciousness.
Sleep and the dreaming state is the main argument of many texts. We usually think that we live in a condition of conscious awakening because we can perceive the different degrees of consciousness when we are dreaming or when we are “awake”, and this leads us to the illusion that we can really perceive ourselves and life in general.
Sleep is a subjective and passive state. While sleeping, we are involved in dream dynamics and our psychic functions work without any logic, continuity, or cause. Echoes from the past and vague perceptions such as noises, physical perceptions, muscular contraction and pain passes through our mind without leaving any coherent input.
It must be said that what happens during our sleep is strictly related to our individual awareness: the degree of awareness during the dream state reflects our level of awareness during our daily life. There is a possibility to experience different experiences from those described above, but only one is for developing a higher state of self-awareness. There are some practices which offer this opportunity, e.g., the tantric Buddhist tradition has a practice of the Milam or Nylam, the practice of the “Illusory Body”, commonly known by the West as Dream Yoga. This practice permits an increasing clarity and lucidity to both waking and sleeping, removing the hindrances and obstacles for a higher awareness. It is important to warn that this practice, if not related to a mindfulness practice during the walking state, can make emotional discomforts. In fact, during the “lucid dreaming”, there is a lengthening of the R.E.M. phase, increasing the production of serotonin and provoking depressive states. In the group I was part of in the early nineties, some of the practitioners were spellbound by this practice to the degree that they left the daily practice and dedicated all their attentions to the dreams: this had harmful consequences to their emotional states, and some of them still bear today, those consequences. So, if you are interested in such practices, be careful.
The walking state does not differ much from the sleep state. A man conditioned by his identifications and fragmented personality constantly loses his awareness, and he can’t perceive this because he has the illusion of continuity determined by memory. When we wake up in the morning, we perceive a state of awareness as a result of yesterday’s memories, a continuum that creates the image of our life.
It is correct to say that, during our daily routines, we experience states of sleep and partial awareness: in fact, we lose our awareness approximately every two minutes – but often even after a few seconds – when we change the object of our partial attention, varying mechanically the emotional states and mental processes.
Similarly, during the sleep state, our consciousness has similar variations, because the quality of our memories depend on the individual degree of awareness. What we remember of our dreams is not very relevant. The absence of a qualitative awareness prevents the recording in our memory of concrete images, with the exception of very intensive dream experiences which happens in the walking state, that can momentarily increase our level of attention.
During our sleep, emotions, thoughts, and desires corresponding to our aspirations, fears, and needs, ordinarily covered in our subconscious mind, arises. During those moments, it is very difficult to distinguish which are the reflections of our real needs, and which comes from the “external” impressions.
The second state is the walking state, and this happens when we wake up, speak, work, imagining that we are awake. This is a state of relative consciousness, or dream-like state, when the sleep degree of attention remains. But now, we achieve a critical attitude towards situations and impressions, a better administration of our thoughts, higher reactions to sensory impressions, feelings, and desires. Walking state is less subjective than the sleep state, because we have the possibility to distinguish what we are from what we are not, our body from other objects. But, nobody can affirm that this is a real state of awareness because all the perceptions perceived are illusory, contradictory, more similar to the illusory perceptions of the dream states. We act in a state of sleep of consciousness, but we don’t know this. Generally, this is a concept that is difficult to accept, but let us consider how many times during our life experiences, someone has told us, or we told someone: “Hey! Wake up! Are you sleeping?” This is only an expression, or the unconscious perception of a reality we are not commonly aware of.
The ancient traditions such as Buddhism, Taoism, Zen, Yoga and others, defined this – the ordinary waking state as “sleep of consciousness”, to accentuate the fact that human beings experience a not very high perception of reality and themselves during sleep. Even the Gospels have many references to this situation: e.g., Jesus answers to Peter when he asked him to linger to participate at the funeral of his parent: “Peter…follow me and let the dead bury their dead”.
Still, our illusory life loses its meaning when we become aware of the fact that we haven’t the qualities we think we have. It’s my subjective opinion that the meaning of life might be to attain at least the third state of consciousness, or self-awareness, and this state is not often a subject of our experiences; it can be naturally experienced for few and rare moments as a result of external influences such as when we feel a real danger or during intense, unexpected or traumatic situations. But these experiences are only a low degree of the awareness one can achieve with conscious labor.
Self-remembering is the empirical understanding of what we really are independently of the conditioned ideas we have of ourselves. It’s an “I am” said with a full and conscious understanding of its meaning, not an illusory perception of a small “I”, but the perception of our unity in a real “I” behind the appearances and conditioning acquired during our past experiences. The main feature of this state of awareness is its non-mechanical reaction to external stimulus. A man becomes objective in regard to himself. He perceives the reality of his emotions, thoughts and aspirations. When someone tells us about this level of consciousness, we usually say that this state is well known: that happens because in every moment we confuse the intense identification with an “I” or a group of “I’s” to our true nature.
Society doesn’t provide education about the fragmented personality. We are not aware of a possible existence independent of the identifications. Honestly, human beings in general, haven’t any idea of what they really are nor the fact that they have the possibility to develop a stable and permanent center of wakeful awareness in themselves.
In ancient times, the East substantially accepted the idea of the ignorance about one’s nature. Ancient disciplines such as Indo-Tibetan Yoga had the aim to lead the practitioners from a walking state to self-remembering and, from this state to the objective consciousness, the fourth and last state known. This state is as far as possible of what we can imagine by our ordinary situation, and is almost impossible to explain in words. But, perhaps we can define the meaning of the term “objective”. So, objective is…”what it is – as it is”…an immutable reality that is not interpreted by ourselves, and it remains as it is independently of our opinions.
Everyone can have some subjective conception of existence, determined by his subjective experience, research, and education. But the real sense of life continues to be what it was from the beginning- immutable and independent from man’s subjective opinions.
We can believe, that when we die, we’ll fall into total emptiness, nothing, that we’ll continue our existence in Heaven or Hell depending on our actions during our physical life. We can also believe that we will be transferred into new dimensions where we’ll learn new things, before we return to continue our existence on Earth, lost in a never-ending cycle of rebirths to realize the absolute truth, or that we must struggle to achieve a Soul. Or we can believe that the Archangel Michael from the Pleiades will come with his flying source and take our “astral body” to bring us to a place where beings live in the Fourth Dimension. It doesn’t matter what our opinion is, because it is influenced by our culture, tradition, beliefs, or the specific “sensing”: an objective reality exists, and if our heart stops pumping, something objective would really happen – Heaven, Hell, Reincarnation, our life taken by the Moon, a cheerful brigade of Pleiadians or the Nothing. The objective would manifest itself despite of all our opinions, hopes, and beliefs.
That’s objective! The true nature of things, more ancient and vast of human theories and subjective concepts. “Objective” means “real”. We can change terms and philosophical conceptions, theories, religion, systems, or expound our “truth” on Facebook or Twitter or on other networks…who cares? Reality would not change. Objective remains what it is – as it is.
In such an objective state of consciousness, a man can enter into the Real World, detached by the dreams and subjective thoughts that bring us far from the reality that is here, now, one inch from our noses. So, this is a state in which one can perceive the reality of all phenomena, of ourselves and the world which surrounds us. This is the real transcendence of all our illusions about wholeness.
This is not my opinion, I’m not so arrogant and pompous to speak about such things, as some described in my posts, without any sense of remorse. This is what people who have “relatively” reached this state who explained to me, and…how do I know that those individuals have reached such a state? Anyone who has made some contact with similar persons can understand how, and can also understand the real meaning of getting in contact with what is defined in the Fourth Way System C-Influence. This is a contact with the real source of real “Knowing”. C-Influence means a source of objective knowing that, as explained by the same term, can influence our state of consciousness and bring us to the possibility to achieve a better state of awareness and consciousness. You can really feel for the first time in your life some glimpse of truth (and this can be reached only by those who have developed an attitude of an empirical nature).
It is not a “School” that allows contacts with such influence, but who teaches in that school: it doesn’t matter if this is a Fourth Way, Buddhist, Taoist, Yoga, or other qualitative ancient system. The source is important, and this source is related by who teaches, not by the name of a school. And, the last thing I wish for all of us (including myself) is to not fall into illusions shared by fictional Gurus or “Prophets”, able only to sell illusions to those who follow them. Not one of us need this. I don’t wish for anyone such an experience. Some of you could take this as a sort of Heresy, and put to me every kind of Anathema. “Who’s that naïve child that writes such idiocy?” But, again, this would be only a subjective reaction, but the truth remains always the same.
I would like to finish this text explaining the meaning used when I wrote above about individuals who reached “relatively” some degree of that consciousness. Yes, there are logically different degrees of Objective Consciousness. Discover empirically (from first hand experience) the causes covered behind the phenomena of life, knowing the real human nature in his Universal, and not personal meaning…these are different levels of objective experience. Objective consciousness depends on the broadmindedness of one’s experimentation. Once we have an approximate idea of such a state, we understand that the limits of this experience depends on the individual’s capacities to expand it.
There are many stories about ancient masters capable of travelling to higher dimensions of consciousness completely strange to common men, and entered into contact with other forms of life. There’s the story explained by Fritz Peters about an experience after the Second World War when he was healed in a moment by Gurdjieff from a nervous breakdown. The master sent to him some kind of blue energetic ray, and all his pains disappeared in a moment.
Belief or not in those things is irrelevant, because the reality remains always the same: as it is. Those who could live in states of awareness might not really be interested if we believe or not. Seeking the truth means stopping to give importance to our ideas, stop to identify ourselves with the safeness of our opinions: it’s the development of an Objective Reason despite of all dogmas imposed from religions, philosophies, society or many development systems. Reality never changes, it is always there, always one, always the same. It’s our choice if we decide to discover this reality passing from the field of effects to the field of the causes, or to remain as we are now, immersed in our subjective beliefs, at the mercy of a reality that shows to our beliefs, the same interest we show to insects.
Copyright © 2010 by Andrea Dandolo