The mind is the ‘seat’ of consciousness; although this might not always be the obvious place, given the preponderance of ill behaviour we humans have accumulated to our credit over the millennia. Judging by the shenanigans of many of the world’s leaders, past and present – that ‘seat’ might arguably be the one Levis is more properly concerned with. J We need our minds, however they are situated, for making decisions; they are ill suited for doing anything else, at least at the conscious level – the level our ego is operating in. The mind’s resources are at cross-purposes with one another when we try to extend conscious control to the most basic operational level; such as putting one foot in front of the other, chewing, swallowing, striking a note on the guitar, yada – yada. We make the decision to do these things, and they happen. We make the decision not to do these things, and they don’t happen. No one need micromanage the process of thought to action; nor can they. Might we correctly suppose, therefore, that ‘conscious control’ does not extend to the cellular level, that our conscious mind’s theatre of operation and influence is in fact confined, and properly so, to that gap between our ears?
I think you know this is a rhetorical question. The conscious mind and the brain which houses it do not direct the activities of the cells in the body. There are a way too many cells; there are all sorts of sub-systems and processes active, whether we are asleep, awake -alive or dead – ‘dead’ being the state of our body-shells, after the mind/spirit/soul combination has left for the spirit world’s version of Club Med – the Garden.
If our conscious minds aren’t responsible for what’s going on in our bodies at the cellular or sub-cellular levels, what is directing these processes and activities; coordinating them into a functional human?
We use only 10 percent of our brain’s capacity to support conscious mental activity – memory recall, for example; that is, if what our grade five teacher Mister Trip taught us still holds? The brain is found lacking in even that, in my case: I’m not at all sure it was Mr. Trip; but he could toss and whack a softball further than Elon can fire one of his rockets – or so it seemed to us kids, and on that basis alone I feel he rates a mention here J.
The brain’s ‘ten percent’ is responsible for directing the mind’s attention – focusing the individual. Focus breeds awareness and awareness underpins all of our decision-making. We are not doing a good job these days of managing our ten percent, if our behaviour, in particular that of many of today’s leaders, is any indication. ‘Focusing’ is nothing other than keeping the mind’s gate open and remaining cognizant of what you are emanating into and receiving from the external world.
With the ubiquity of the internet, the advent of the 24-hour news channel, and television screens displaying news in every waiting room and public transit station, we receive non-stop, exposure to news of every kind; but most especially the negative, fear/anxiety-inspiring kind. Owing to the negative character of the news, our minds are hard-pressed to maintain an open gate to the world; failing more often than not because the force, direction, and relentlessness of these ‘winds’ are making it much more difficult to keep the mind’s gate open ‘outward.’
Some will opt to let their front door shut entirely to gain some relief. But it is necessary for us to keep the gate open; otherwise we cannot gather empirical information from the world. We cannot receive the light that’s coming in along with the ‘darkness.’
We forfeit the opportunity to know – and knowing is the only way to ensure that we are processing the correct material. If you are a government type, this describes the process of ‘evidence-based’ policy making. One can neither make rational decisions or behave rationally, if acting on the basis of the wrong information, yes?
With all of the crap that’s blowing in through the ‘front door’ these days, it is tempting for us to just leave the door shut and ‘live’ on the inside; ‘off the grid,’ as it were. But no worries: the closed mind easily compensates for isolation – it will create a whole new world to replace the empirical one – one existing in precise accord with your personal specifications.
Driven by our need for community with others of our kind, the culmination of this process is the utter replacement of the empirical world by the subjective one. The souls in this world, you have created all by yourself. The ‘god’ creator of this world, you create all by yourself. That god will be anything you want it to be; tell you everything you want to hear….who could want a better ‘god’ than that? 🙂
Congratulations. You are now officially ‘crazy.’ Nailing the front door shut has completely disconnected you from god and the world At this stage, the only rational decision left to your ten-percent is to choose whether to ‘live’ in a happy dream or a grumpy one.
The mind is its own gatekeeper. It needs to be self-policing with respect to the traffic it allows through the gate and as diligent about this as a Toronto traffic cop. We cannot allow the mind’s focus to be distracted by that which serves us no bona fide purpose – following the antics of Donald Trump in the news, say; even though he is president of a great nation, it’s far better for the world to ignore him, Bassad, Un, Erdogan, and other like-spirited ‘leaders;’ keep them in their respective play-pens and out of trouble, while the rational people of the world get on with the process of building a sustainable and joy-filled future for our children’s generation and future generations to inherit and build upon. The forum for this already exists.
We need to avoid wasting our conscious mental capacity. Attempting to micromanage interactions and processes consciously is an egregious waste of our 10 percent and is running interference if not outright blocking the operation of the unconscious mind’s response mechanisms with respect to both empirical and subjective inputs. An important process of the sub-conscious mind is communicating its output to the conscious mind so that it can analyze, choose and act properly.
Are the cells of our body left to their own devices, then? In a word, yes. But unlike us humans, the individual cells in our bodies go about their daily business with their egos and non-egos in perfect balance , as children do, and as most if not all of the other species existing on our planet do. Our body cells ‘know what to do,’ and when to do it. Always – without some external entity having to tell or micromanage them.
What is creating and coordinating their behaviours is their purpose; their differentiation having been determined by natural necessity before the individual is born. Cells ‘know’ exactly what to do and when, because they are fulfilling their natural programming – going about their business, as it were – being themselves. Doing. Not needing to struggle or to expend a whole lot of effort. But that’s when their gatekeepers are doing their jobs resolutely, without fail (and without struggle J); resisting the temptation to lapse into apathy or complacency; able to do this because they are focused, present, and undistracted by fear –theirs or others. Cells do, because they are programmed to. They do not struggle; any more than an apple tree struggles to grow its apples.
Contrast the healthy cells’ modus operandi with that of cancer cells; erstwhile healthy cells with their gatekeeping functionality now gone amok. I say this because cancer cells, just like healthy cells, ‘want’ to grow; however they have no notion at all of direction or extent – and so they grow willy-nilly into other regions of the body; turning the healthy cells in those neighbourhoods over to ‘their way of thinking.’ The process continues and gathers momentum until there is nowhere left for the cancers to grow into, nothing left to consume, nothing left to do. Then the cancer cells die. That’s the life of a cancer cell – grow/proliferate/consume/die. They do these things exceptionally well; but without contributing anything at all to the society of cells they form a part of, unlike the healthy cells. Cancerous behaviour, though ‘of the body,’ destroys the body.
Compare the behaviour of cancer cells to healthy cells. Compare the behaviour of the humans who expand their consumption and control of the global community, to those who take only what they need and are looking to make things better for others in their community (as well as for themselves). In the case of the former, the culmination is death for the community (where is the Roman empire now?) – in the latter case, the culmination is healing, rejuvenation, moving forward – sustainably, inexorably, and with great promise.
Healthy cells know when to ‘hold up and when to fold up;’ cancer cells do not. There is no balance between the cancer cells’ need to grow, acquire, and consume, and the body’s ability to provide. Healthy cells know because their ‘mind’s’ gate is always open a crack to allow input from the world. They simply cannot respond to stimuli in any way other than with perfect correctness.
Our minds, à la the body, continually receive, are guided by, and benefit from the world’s/universe’s knowledge , healing, and maintenance; but it must first separate the negatives from the empirical inputs and properly process them. The negative stuff is supposed to be absorbed by the ego (our mind’s waste-processing system), processed (felt) and then jettisoned forthwith from our consciousness; They must never be retained or recalled, because these energies are toxic to our spirit.
And so, there really is no mystery existing for humankind to uncover; no struggle mandated by some supernatural being for us to go through in order to purge our ‘original sin’ – if there is such a being, do not worry, because the being who would create anything for misery’s sake is not god. Our creator simply meant for us to live happily and without struggle.