Following on from his descriptions of types of consciousness, culminating in his ‘perambulant consciousness’ paradigm, Dr Rob Docters van Leeuwen now examines the links between consciousness and matter.
The mind works in a subtle manner, giving precedence to one particular consciousness mode while keeping the other modes running in the background, changing the ‘mix’ of consciousness modes constantly, rather like a computer that runs many programs at the same time. While doing a menial job in local consciousness with awareness, we can receive sudden, unprecedented insights in non-local consciousness. Some people have been in a coma for years and wake up to have ‘seen’ and ‘heard’ things, which indeed happen to be true. In considering what consciousness is, we find that not only are there different modes of consciousness, but also that consciousness is also related to matter. “Consciousness is a form of matter just as matter is a form of consciousness”.
The nature of consciousness
What is consciousness? Sometimes, when reading someone’s mind, what exactly is it in us that is conscious of the other person’s thought? One thing is for sure: it is the molecules in our brain that do this mind reading. So, these molecules must be tiny transmitters and receivers of thoughts! Who would have thought of that 100 years ago? As we are made up from matter, our earliest origins were born in the ‘Big Bang’. Later hydrogen was formed and later from that, stars. When those stars exploded as supernovae the heavy elements were formed: oxygen, carbon, phosphorous, iron, cobalt, etc. All these elements are present in our body. All atoms in the entire universe are capable of mind reading and communicating with other atoms. It also follows that consciousness is omnipresent in the universe, and that, likely, there are other conscious beings present in the universe. As C. G. Jung said: “Psyche is a quality of matter because we exist as matter. Just as in Chinese philosophy the male principle (yang) carries the seed of the female principle (yin) and vice versa, in matter the seed of psyche may be discovered and in psyche the seed of matter.”
Consciousness and matter
Matter and consciousness are interchangeable, in a way. Matter creates consciousness, for instance when we read a letter from a friend. Knowledge or consciousness can create matter, for instance in nuclear-physical experiments in which ultra-fast atomic nuclei are collided in accelerators. In these collisions, matter ceases to exist for a brief while and then recreates in a way different from before! Thus, matter, energy and consciousness are interchangeable.
Consciousness is not limited to the brain. The other chakras in our body are also conscious. They express it through intelligent communication with other chakras, exchanging information energies. In extensive research, Paul Pearsall and Candace Pert have shown that cells have memories that influence our behaviour and traits. Consciousness is a universal attribute of creation.
Where and how did consciousness start being consciousness?
Evolution itself is a journey of consciousness trying to express itself. Alex Grey in 1981 expressed the beginning of the universe in these terms: “The void awakens, creation of infinite spiritual substance – the universal mind lattice”. The Zen Buddhist view is that the void is potential emptiness and potential form, so it is total potentiality. This is called ‘Sunyata’ and it was when Sunyata revealed one of its faces that led to the creation of the universe. As we are conscious, so must be the void. Before the beginning of anything as we know it, there was consciousness…as there is now. What follows first as a result of the ‘awakening’, is the primordial polarity, in Chinese cosmology known as the t’ai chi symbol – better known as yin-and-yang united. The Bible says: “Then God separated the light from the darkness and he named the light Day and the darkness Night”.
The birth of the universe followed, 20-15 billion years ago. The earth formed 4.3 billion years ago. The first bacteria appeared soon after: 3.8 billion years ago. With them DNA appeared. It never dies, merely changing its structure and appearance into a cavalcade of living beings. If we stare back down this ‘great chain of being’, we see a continuous process of spiritual evolution. Humankind has just begun to expand its consciousness to non-local levels of existence in substantial numbers. This process will accelerate. Within possibly 100 years, spiritual and technological science will be re-united to truly integrate the then global society’s spiritual and material growth. Scientific and technological implementations will then only be made if they serve the environment as much as humankind.
Right now there are already people who have the right frame of mind and thinking tools, as the movie “What the ‘Bleep’ do we know?” has shown. They have come out of the woods. Yet, there are not enough of them to make a political difference. Hence, more suffering will occur until a majority of non-locally conscious people has formed. Humankind will then look back at our society as technologically quite advanced but spiritually crude, cruel and poor.
The world is faced now with the question of how to re-marry spirit and science after a divorce of 400 years, and to promote the ascension of consciousness to higher levels of existence amongst the entire world population. The evolution of consciousness: yang and yin T’ai chi in Chinese means – ‘peace energy’. The t’ai chi symbol expresses an abstract reality. It has two aspects – yin and yang. Yin is formlessness; yang is form. Each contains the seed of the other. This well-known yin-yang symbol is of immense profundity. We find its implementation everywhere.
Yin and yang are conscious of each other, they are consciousness. Between yin and yang there is dynamic peace, together they express the void, at peace with itself, creating great energy, which maintains their unity. Yin and yang express their dynamic peace through their spirit (universal consciousness), which unfolds everything from and enfolds everything back into the void. This great formative force is like a woman who would like to have a child. She does not know what the child is going to look like, let alone what future it will have, even if it will happen at all, she just wants to have a child.
In his book ‘The Spectrum of consciousness’, Ken Wilber proposes a spectrum of consciousness with three main categories. He calls the consciousness of matter, DNA, viruses, plants and animals ‘pre-personal consciousness’. The brain-mind’s mode of existence that creates personal consciousness is called the ego-self. The other modality of the brain-mind is the quantum-self. In this state, non-local consciousness, also called transpersonal consciousness is experienced. Transpersonal consciousness goes beyond an individual’s consciousness – telepathy is a prime example.
Yin and yang are consciousness
The Roman Catholic nun, Chwen Lee and the Jesuit priest, Thomas Hand give a beautiful overview of the primordial beginning of consciousness in their book, ‘A taste of water, Christianity through Taoist-Buddhist eyes. First there is pure, dynamic, conscious potentiality. In Zen Buddhism this concept is known as the great void, or Sunyata. From the great void two consciousness principles develop: yang and yin. Yin is formlessness, has no distinctions and can be depicted as pure black darkness. It bears the potentiality of form. Yang is form, depicted as white, representing all colours and all things. Yang and yin are connected through consciousness. Their mutual understanding is expressed as a great consciousness quantum possibility wave vibration between the two poles. The movement from yang to yin and back is represented by the curved line in the symbol and is actuated by spirit – universal consciousness. This moves from formlessness to form to formlessness to form, unfolding and enfolding reality in an endless dance. This dance is expressed in Hindu mythology as “Shiva’s dance”, representing the destruction and creation of the universe and reveals the cycles of death, birth and re-birth. Shiva’s dance is also depicted in the Tarot arcanum, “The Universe”.
Up to this stage in the ‘chain of being’, time and space have not separated; yang and yin exist as the two aspects of primordial consciousness. When time and space separate through the willpower of the divine (symbolised in the Tarot by ‘The Magician’), yang and yin united in t’ai chi, split into two separate aspects. Yang becomes abstract consciousness (the Tarot card ‘The Universe’), and Yin material Existence (the Tarot card ‘The World’). From the moment of separation of space and time, usually called ‘the beginning of creation’, both consciousness and existence commenced their evolution from lower forms into higher forms. This process is ongoing. The natural sciences concentrate on understanding matter and its evolution, psychology on the evolution of consciousness (also called ‘psyche’ or ‘mind’).
Consciousness and existence each have a dual yin-yang structure in which form and formlessness alternate. In the evolution of consciousness, consciousness of the body is the lowest level. Next follows simple ego-consciousness (image).
Yang and yin are the two primordial aspects of each consciousness quantum possibility wave. T’ai chi duplicates itself through willpower (symbolised in the Tarot by The Magician) into evolving consciousness-spirit (The Universe) and in evolving existence-matter (in the Tarot Arcanum The World).
This level of consciousness can, for example, prompts people to have plastic surgery done. The next step is consciousness of the group and the development of interpersonal communication. Then follows the development of abstract self-awareness: “I think, so I exist”. These levels of consciousness are ego-driven and local. The next level up is psychic consciousness. Saints attain devic consciousness.
Cosmologies and consciousness
A cosmology is a metaphysical framework of thoughts, methods of reasoning and ideas that attempts to explain the cosmos, humankind and the world, the events therein and the relationships between them. Cosmologies are sources of possible answers regarding our existence. They must include the concept of consciousness.
Today we are very used to scientific (also called ‘exoteric’) cosmologies and are constantly bombarded by updated versions. They indicate how the universe was born from a big bang that subsequently inflated faster than the speed of light and then cooled down until the stars and later earth formed, etc. These scientific cosmologies ignore or forget the spiritual (‘esoteric’) aspect of evolution, an aspect that is far more important, if we are to survive on earth in the long run.
Ancient cosmologies and consciousness
Ancient, pre-Christian cosmologies are full of spirituality. They have a similar structure because they depict the same inner and outer reality and point out the same inner structure of the universe and humankind. The same applies to myths and legends, such as the stories about King Arthur and his 24 Knights. Two readily available, ancient cosmologies are the I Ching and the Tarot. They give us—when used properly—answers to difficult questions such as: “where am I in the world with my goals?” or, “why did my relationship with X fail?” or, “which career path I should I take?”, because they map out the spiritual development of creation. As such they help us in raising our self-consciousness.
The tarot seems to have developed in Egypt, Near-Asia and Europe. The I Ching was developed in ancient China. Both cosmologies predate Christianity by more about two thousand years. Although the Tarot and the I Ching seemingly have a very different symbology, they are hermetically correlated.
Share this post