artist with paintings and paintIn spiritual affairs, it’s key to understand the true relationship between the “I” and the visible world. Many seek the answer in the outer realm, yet few understand that the one and only key to liberation and illumination is simply to go within. It’s just a matter of taking the big leap and daring to remember what you already know—that you’re a potential master of your own destiny.  

MATTER

In order to remember and realize the fundamental nature of your consciousness, you need to go deep into yourself and strip your conditioned mind of every outer impression and illusion possible.

How do we do that?

There’s actually nothing to “do,” it must be undone by the simple realization that the television in front of you is made of exactly the same building blocks as the couch you’re sitting on while reading this article. Atoms!

Obviously, the atoms within your television have a different structure and capacity than the ones in your sofa, but fundamentally, they’re formed and shaped from the same soil: namely, matter.

So, in an unconventional way, the reality that surrounds us is merely a canvas filled with matter in which the observer differentiates shapes, figures, forms and other subjective impressions.

The television can only be seen and recognized as a television if the observer previously learned that an object with this specific kind of shape and mechanics can be categorized under the word “television.” In fact, there’s really no television as we know it, but a mere manifestation of atoms holding the thing together as something we recognize and categorize as a “television.”

In short, every recognizable object is built from atoms and, therefore, atoms are the fundamental building blocks of the reality we perceive with our senses.

In that sense, matter is one of the ground aspects of our being—consciousness, the I, the Self. It’s the paint the painter spreads on their canvas in order to create their next work of art—the painting itself. It’s the clay the sculptor uses to mold and shape a statue of divine feminine power and form. Matter is the passive ground that must be animated into something dynamic and lifelike.

SPIRIT

Just as the paint stands for matter in the analogy of the painting, the painter stands for spirit, the dynamic life force. When the two (spirit and matter) collide, they manifest automatically into something we call reality. This automatic manifestation, the marriage between spirit and matter, is therefore the key that leads to the secrets of the Self—the nature of consciousness, your consciousness.

And so, the universal formula for consciousness is:

SPIRIT + MATTER = MANIFESTATION

Or, in more worldly terms:

PAINTER + PAINT = PAINTING

There can’t possibly be a reality without one of these two primordial compounds. The painter can’t paint the painting without the paint. The paint can’t come into manifestation without the painter. Evidently, the painting is merely the result—the marriage, if you will—of the painter and the paint.

Just like a child is the result—the manifestation—of a man and a woman, reality must be the result of the two basic principles of Life living inside every individual: spirit and matter.

Therefore, it must be stressed that you don’t live your life, you create it. You don’t choose a path, you manifest it. You’re not set apart from the reality you perceive with your own eyes, you are it.

Where do we go wrong, then?

MIND

The third aspect of human consciousness is mind. Just like a steering wheel, the mind decides which direction to go. “Make up your mind” is a common expression people use to spur someone to take action and walk a certain path.

Choosing a path and accomplishing the goals at the end of the road is completely dependent on the power of the mind. In this context, mind power has nothing to do with force as we know it in the physical sense, but rather with consistency, will, desire and the innate capacity to neutralize the impressions and illusions that come from the outer world.

In other words, mind power is the ability to stay focused on your goals without losing too much energy to the distractions and temptations coming from worldly affairs. A stable and peaceful mind, detached from the mundane and always content, is the greatest tool a human being can have if they wish to walk a smooth and comfortable life path.

Alas, this isn’t always the case for everyone. The mind is often misused and perverted and becomes a weapon of self-destruction instead of a tool of divine construction. Ignorance concerning this principle will result in a corrupted manifestation (reality) that includes all that’s bad and cruel.

The fearful, angry mind will lead the individual down the road to perdition: a self-created reality as a mere reflection of the Self.

In order to restore the outer world, we must ease our minds and come to a point of harmony and stability, as the outer world is indeed a reflection of the inner world. But you can’t soothe a troubled mind that easily. It takes time, perseverance and a whole lot of aspiration to accomplish this difficult task. You could compare it with climbing a mountain—once you’ve reached the top, you’ll be the king or queen of your castle again.

Man at top of mountain - Mind over matterThe silencing of the mind is therefore the true and only path that leads to redemption and a genuine and operative spiritual practice that’s comprehensible and accessible for every living soul. Spirituality is not only the science of the Self, but also the winding road to self-development, growth and self-expression.

A peaceful mind opens the gates for new experiences and possibilities. A troubled mind closes them relentlessly. The vision of who you want to be and what you want to achieve becomes brighter and clearer only if the clouds of anger, fear, resentment, grief and hate disappear to make space for a whole new world—your own proper reality. Then, it’ll be crystal clear that the Self contains both outer and inner aspects because the painter can never paint without the paint.

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by Pieter Van Cauwenbergh
image 1: Pexels; image 2: Pexels

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