The Primacy of ClarityOctober 1, 2008
When we are clear, we understand. We feel certainty. We have emotional comfort. We allow events, however rough, to occur. We go with the flow. We are OK with what is.
When we are not clear, we feel the opposite. Uncertainty, confusion, apprehension, fear. We resist what is occurring, even sweat the small stuff.
What is this clarity? Clarity arises in the container of experience, in awareness. It is clarity of consciousness. This clarity arises in the openness / expansiveness of awareness and in the purity of the channel – the physiology, emotions, and mind.
This is why the wise suggest enough sleep, routine, exercise, and correct food. This encourages clarity. We step into the flow, the ease, life is smooth.
It’s not about what is happening ‘out there’. It is in how we are experiencing it, the clarity we have, that determines the quality of the experience and how we respond.
In the growth process, first we experience a cycle of disintegration. This is often a period with a reduction in clarity, followed by a new period of integration and a new clarity in that area. We experience intellectual a-ha’s, emotional resolution, or a sense of certainty when we come to a point of clarity.
However, during a major period of disintegration we are less likely to follow routine and take care of ourselves. The correct direction to act is unclear so we become uncertain, lack confidence. We often tend to escapism and extremes if the change is significant. Sometimes, some chocolate or ice cream can be a medicine to smooth change. (laughs) Perhaps a good movie, some dancing, some solo time. But we have to be careful not to overdo or this can discourage the new integration and clarity. Moderation is as always the key, but moderation without guilt or requirement. It is a time for allowing.
Dr. Vasant Lad explains that Ayurveda, the ancient science of health, tells us life is meant to be enjoyed. It make recommendations for diet and routine. If you exceed moderation, thats fine, here is the remedy to come back to balance, to restore clarity.
Meditation is also key. It helps to clear the system and can speed the process. This may mean accelerated disintegration but then integration follows quickly too. Meditation also expands the container of experience, the awareness itself, which leads to increasing capacity for clarity.
This process of disintegration is a key to understanding the origins of “the story”. In the process of growth of awareness, we shift from a dependence on wholeness into a stage of individuation. We step out of the oneness of ignorance into first knowing. (think Garden of Eden) But first knowing is a separate knowing, an awareness of duality and specialness. That knowing is incomplete and lacks clarity. In order to increase clarity, the sense of special identity arises in mind as ego. Ego creates stories to explain things, to restore confidence.
This is why we seek teachers and religions. Why science seeks to explain the world. We are seeking answers for the intellect to restore a sense of missing clarity of awareness. To feel confidence in what is.
This is also why we see terrorism and propaganda. They are weapons of control. When people lack clarity or are in fear, they loose the ability to act decisively. Without certainty, we vacillate and become dependent.
Some of these stories have value but many become a further separation and increase a sense of us vs them. As our clarity increases, we begin to see through the stories of specialness and fall away from uniqueness and into oneness, a oneness of knowing.
That falling away process is one of disintegration. It may seem like a cycle of loss. But what we loose is old stories. What we gain is everything.