The Radius of the Three Contexts of Appearance, Part One.
(This conversation continues at these links, but the introduciton is here.
We get much sharing over the years on NNH, and the phrase that stands out most often is some form of “there is no separation”. I want to question what it is that might be practical in that realisation.
My question supposes that we all have some basic necessities to remain alive. I guess that I am saying that we all have to live. Those that profess no-separation might say that we don’t have to live, that we are lived. I will go ahead with my proposition anyway, without getting tangled in too many abstractions. Or I’ll leave those abstracts for later.
What are some basics of life, based on perception?
- Something exists.
- Perception of what exists is an unknown mix of the existential and what we think about it.
- Life is always moving, death is always still.
- Life is a multiplicity.
What are the basics of life, based on assumptions?
- If nothing exists, then perceptions don’t exist, but they do.
- There seems to be no way to get outside of perceptions to verify what they are.
- We can never know what part of our perceptions are existing and what part are interpretation.
- Interpretation tends to verify itself as real.
- At least the interpretation part of perception could be classified as illusion.
- It must take constant movement to sustain life.
- Movement presupposes space to move in, therefore life only exists in space.
- It must take that multiplicity to benefit all, and make nature work.
What are the basics, based on preferences?
- That Life is valuable.
- That Multiplicity is valuable.
- Perceptions different from my own should be honoured.
The Three Contexts of Appearance (coming just below) are perceived, which indicates that they are perceived by humans each standing in one of the three contexts. The view from each context is different, but the life that is receiving those perceptions is valuable. Therefore it can be considered necessary to the whole from where it perceives.
The first context to consider is perhaps the last to be discovered. Since this is the question, i’ll arbitrarily put it first. It is encapsulated by those who say that there is no separation. This is a very subtle context, not readily apparent to all. It is an expanded state that is achieved by becoming less grounded. Grounded and expansion are sort of opposites. They are both an energy phenomenon in the body, and also authored by mental states. Groundedness is knowing where you are, and by our earlier assumptions that is mostly an interpretation (a made up illusion). The expanded state is not knowing anything for sure, and therefore our sensitivities become expanded as a survival mechanism. This state can come a little at a time, or through some unexplainable experience, that can be quite shocking.
Expanded could be less of an illusion than grounded, but we don’t know if subtler forms of belief are just as misleading as gross forms. Maybe they’re even more so since they are less visible. Grounded could get boring, or it could produce impulsive actions that are destructive to self and others. Expanded has its own fears and worries, and it is less functional in society. So it tends to be self-destructive.
The second context of appearances is perhaps the first to be discovered. It is “I” the individual.
- I have a body with strengths and weaknesses, sickness and health.
- I have feelings and emotions that produce (or are driven by) thoughts and interpretations. I have some level of anxiety and survival concern.
- I live and function (or don’t function) in a family and a society.
- I have a certain quantum of luck being born and raised in a society with well-being and justice. Or I exist in deprivation, arbitrariness, and perhaps in a war-torn, tragic environment.
- I have a self image that aids or inhibits how I function and interact with my surroundings and relationships.
- I have a rule book of behaviour that is based on the memory of my history, feelings and experiences, and it may be rather hard-nosed and inflexible. It sometimes seems to be hard wired into my body.
The third context is I live in the world.
- This world is made up of resources, and people (which are also resources), and economic flows (also deemed resources).
- I don’t understand these flows albeit there seems to be escalating conflict about all of them.
- At one time many of us believed that the world was big enough for all these movements with relative safety islands, but now we are not so sure.
- It sometimes seems best to “be expanded” (oblivious) about that, but greater and greater shocks break into our protective fog.
- We are perplexed by the separation of wealth, and the exponential trend where this is verified. We don’t know what can come of this as we see environmental destruction and injustice.
- We understand that some people no longer value their own lives, and they use up their own body to destroy others.
- We wonder how their life could be that bad to discard it, or if they are just crazy, or if something else is happening that we are not informed about or don’t understand.
- We like to believe that there does exist value, and that it can triumph, not as a victory but through including.
Context Two knows about itself, but maybe very little about the others.
Context Three knows about context Two, and thinks that it has mastered it.
Context One knows about two and three, but maybe is not so active in them. Perhaps they have arrived in context one as a reaction against failure in context two or three.
Our earlier premise is that all three contexts are vital to the functioning and survival of this planet. We might assume that there is a part to play in each context for each person, if only to be informed and speak what is right for them.
It might have been useful for some people to jump between these contexts to either aid-with or avoid the problems encountered in the other. Each context might be used as a justification for engaging in one of the other contexts.
My questions are:
Are there any contexts that I left out?
What is the right balance of activity for an individual in each of these three contexts?
What is the possibility for individuals residing in each context to be empowered and be active in the others?
What is the radius of the context that you prefer, to reach and make difference in the other contexts?
What is the role of context one, and what is the value or practicality of knowing that there is no separation?
How do you make “there is no separation” into a contribution to yourself, your family, community, nation and world, (race, religion, poor people, or any other category that you care to add)?
Thank you for your contribution to these questions.