Over the millenia humans have celebrated the power and pleasures of emotions; the bliss of love, the power of anger and revenge, the truth of duty and many others. And along with that celebration, has gone the malediction of less favoured emotions; jealousy, uncontrolled anger, fear and cowardice to name just a few.
And over the millenia, emotions of all kinds have been seen to be spontaneous uprising s of something deep within the psyche of that person. But what if all those feelings were simply productions; simply artefacts of a sentient being’s process of thought?.
Many philosophical religions like Hindusim, Taosim and Buddhism have long argued that meditation aims to reduce the ego so that one can obtain at least a glimpse of the eternal. Rarely is it stated that the ego is in fact simply the productions of thoughts. Without thought; simply being, there is no ego; but a state of no-thought that very very few human beings have attained.
Most consistent meditators know that as their practice deepens, they become calmer, less ruffled by the buffets of day to day events, and less prone to consequent unfortunate actions. Too often this state of calmness is portrayed as some mystical state of entry into spiritual bliss and enlightenment, rather than simply a gentle reduction in thought processes, and an opening for the mind to see how it always directly connects to the world without grasping or judging..
What if, for those of us who have endured adverse childhood events in our lives, some negative thought-patterns become entrenched and circular, leading the person to view all future events through the thought processes of the past? A ‘lens of discontent’ if you like. One can hypothesise that if we had mental health clinicians who were skilled in teaching their patients how to break out of those circular thought processes, to focus instead on the everyday joys of life in the here and now, many mental health patients would be able to live fulfilled and even contented lives without psychotropic medication. Those who were suicidally depressed and hopeless could also learn those skills, leading to a huge reduction in the trauma and further suicides in countless families and communities around the world.
Of course, being content with what one has, being happy simply to be here and now and not need to buy the next thing, visit the next place of the bucket list or compete with others, would mean our acquisitional global culture would start to disintegrate. Product advertising would be laughed at for the myth that it is. You must be sold something you dont recognise you need- capitalism would largely disappear, and we might begin to learn to co-exist with our fellow species.
The power of government fear campaigns, ideologies, corporatism and divisive religions , will begin to fade away.
A revolutionary process indeed!
Will we see the end of love? While the romanticism of love would be seen for what it is; simply powerful thoughts, often drawn automatically from deep within the childhood thought patterns of the person, our species capacity to love both our own, and all other living things, will be greatly enhanced.
Love therefore will be seen for what it is- a state of mind, rather than something mysterious and sublime. The 4000 year old Chinese I Ching, or the Book of Divinations puts it beautifully:
No matter how close to them he may be, if his center of gravity depends on them, he is inevitably tossed to and fro between joy and sorrow. Rejoicing to high heaven, then sad unto death-this is the fate of those who depend upon an inner accord with other persons whom they love.
Here we have only the statement of the law that this is so. Whether this condition is felt to be an affliction of the supreme happiness of love, is left to the subjective verdict of the person concerned. I Ching; Hexagram Chung Fu ( Inner Truth), six in the third.
The mysteriousness of ‘falling in love’ can be ascribed to the mysteriousness of our thoughts; their source, the pool of thoughts that populate our unconscious and dreams, but arising directly from our formative experiences and those who wielded power over us when we were young impressionable and vulnerable, and the consequent thought patterns that were cemented in place at that time.
To be continued…..