That Which Truly Is, Eternally and Only IsIs there no distinction between "Absolute Awareness" and Consciousness that comes with the body and merges with "Absolute Awareness" when the body dies?
You say, “There is no entity that goes ‘there.’ Rather Consciousness is always in its own placeless place, knowing and being only itself, eternally.”
This is a great eye-opener. I cannot bargain any longer. I have to admit that there is only Consciousness, albeit sometimes veiled it seems.
A new question arises: Is there no distinction between “Absolute Awareness” (where there is no sense of being present and which is eternally) and Consciousness that comes with the body and merges with “Absolute Awareness” when the body dies?
Just: Is there no distinction between Absolute Awareness (where there is no sense of being present and which is eternally) and Consciousness that comes with the body and merges with “Absolute Awareness” when the body dies?
Rupert: What makes you think that Consciousness ‘comes with the body’ and merges with Absolute Awareness when the body dies?’
In order to make this claim both Consciousness and Absolute Awareness must be your experience. Consciousness is whatever it is that is conscious of these words. Awareness is whatever it is that is aware of these words. Are they two?
The answer to that question is the answer to your question about the merging of Consciousness with Awareness.
However, let us explore it further:
What makes us think that Consciousness comes with the body? It is, as you imply, our experience that the body ‘comes’ or appears. However, do we have the experience of the appearance of Consciousness?
If Consciousness appears when the body appears, what does it appear to? The reason we are able to say from experience that the body appears is that ‘something’ is conscious or aware of the appearance and disappearance of sensations and perceptions, out of which the body is made.
If we also claim that Consciousness appears and disappears, that same ‘something’ that witnesses the appearance and disappearance of the body, must be present, prior to the appearance of Consciousness, witnessing its appearance, endurance and subsequent disappearance.
What is that ‘something?’ In order to make the claim that Consciousness appears that ‘something’ must be both present and conscious, witnessing its appearance. Whatever it is that is both conscious and present is precisely what we call Consciousness.
Likewise this apparent ‘something’ must witness the disappearance of Consciousness. And in what form do ‘we,’ this ‘something,’ remain over after the disappearance of Consciousness? Whatever form that is must be unconscious (because Consciousness has allegedly disappeared) but how could ‘something’ that is not conscious be conscious of the disappearance or absence of Consciousness?
Therefore the suggestion that Consciousness appears and disappears is simply an untenable belief. Not only is the appearance of Consciousness not an experience, but it could never be an experience, because Consciousness would always have to be present ‘first,’ so to speak, in order to witness the appearance of anything.
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If Consciousness were to ‘merge with Absolute Awareness when the body dies,’ Consciousness must be un-merged, that is, separate from Awareness before the body dies, that is, now.
If Consciousness and Awareness are separate, they must both have defining and therefore limiting qualities.
Whatever it is that is aware of these words must be present in this current experience and likewise (if we insist that it is different) whatever it is that is conscious of these words must also be present in this current experience.
So turn you attention to whatever it is that is aware of these words and to whatever it is that is conscious of these words. Do you turn your attention to two different places? In fact, can you even turn your attention towards one such place? Is it possible to turn the attention towards the source of attention?
By exploring our experience in this way we come to the deep, experiential conviction that Consciousness (whatever it is that is conscious of these words) and Awareness (whatever it is that is aware of these words) are ‘both’ undeniably present and conscious/aware but have no objective, defining or limiting qualities. Therefore it is our actual experience that they are one.
Now, having seen this, what happens to our question about the merging of Consciousness with Awareness after (or indeed before) the death of the body?
In order to ask the question about the merging of Consciousness with Awareness we first have to imagine that each body/mind has its own little parcel of Consciousness within it, which upon death may or may not be liberated from the body/mind and possibly, as a result, merge with Awareness.
Imagining that each individual possesses Consciousness within them, is like imagining that the screen on which a film appears is contained solely within one of the characters in the film and that when that particular character dies, that part of the screen that made up his particular body merges with the greater screen.
But what happens to the screen when the image disappears? Absolutely nothing! It is the same with Awareness/Consciousness.
Awareness/Consciousness is ‘always’ in the same placeless, timeless place, never moving out of or away from itself to become anything other than itself, and therefore never having to merge with itself.
What could Awareness/Consciousness become that would be separate or distinct from itself, from which it would have to return in order to merge with itself?
Do we know or could we know of anywhere or anything outside of or separate from Awareness/Consciousness where Awareness/Consciousness could go or become?
In order to ask about merging with Absolute Awareness we first have to imagine that we are something other than Absolute Awareness.
But who is this separate, other ‘I’ that we are imagined to be, and who is the one who would imagine such an ‘I?’ The one that would imagine such an ‘I’ is itself imagined. In other words, the ‘I’ that would imagine itself separate is only a separate ‘I’ in its own imagination.
This ‘I’ is made only of the thought that thinks it, so we can say that it is only from the point of view of thought that the imagined ‘I’ is real.
Only thought imagines the content of thought to be real.
Now what is the substance of this imaginary thinking? It is made only out of the Awareness in which it appears. In fact it doesn’t appear in Awareness, like an object seems to appear in space, but rather it is this very Awareness which, out of its infinite freedom, ‘takes the shape of’ the imagining or apparently veiling thought.
When this is seen clearly, it is seen at the same time that the question of merging with Awareness, is only for the imagination, not for reality.
In reality only Awareness/Consciousness is, eternally knowing its own being and being its own knowing, which is simply another name for love.
What we call death is simply the apparent forgetting of this reality.
Love is. Death is not.