What is Meditation

Meditation Techniques

Spiritual Inspirators


Meditation Music


I. Consiousnes & Evolution

II. Defining Awareness & Consciousness
III. The Mystery of Awareness

IV. The Enigma of Consciousness
V. The Ouroboros Consciousness
VI.  Ouroboric Super-Awareness

VII. The Super-Awake Flow
VIII. Shared Fields of Consciousness
IX. Civilization and Consciousness 
X. Civilization and Consciousness Part II


The inner and the outer Person
The Sacred Wound of the Inner Warrior

The operative system of thought
The liberation from or of the Self
The liberation of the greater Self
The Butterfly of the Soul

The Divine Mystery

God is The absolute No-thing 
which is above all existence 
Pseudo-Dionysius 345 - 407 AD

I use words like consciousness,
God, primordial essence,
soul, highest reality, and
other similar expressions
 intuitively and fluidly.

To speak about something
we don't know and can't
comprehend with predetermined terminology seems
absurd to me.

Psychologist C.G. Jung
argued that everything
that transcends our
conceptual world
and approaches infinity
or zero can be
experienced as religious
in a psychological sense.

I often include quotes
from Meister Eckhart
 because his formulations
make sense on this level:

He is so quiet,
so free of any kind
of knowledge, that no idea
of God is alive in him.






We are not capable of defining
this familiar and profoundly mysterious entity.
Could it (the Soul) be a constituent of our universe, ignored by the
physicist, but infinetely more important than light?
Alexis Carrel - Man, the Unknown

Meditation.dk is read by only a select few, and this chapter on consciousness won't likely boost its popularity. In essence, everything on Meditation.dk revolves around consciousness. This chapter explores my initial, tentative knocks on the Doors of Perception, behind which lies an infinite series of doors.

In my view, consciousness is one of the most challenging phenomena to understand and describe. As a result, this chapter is continually revised, and I may never be entirely satisfied with it.

Consciousness is a fascinating but elusive phenomenon.
it is impossible to specify what
it is, what it does, or why it evolved.
Nothing worth reading has been written about it.
Stuart Sutherland

Since childhood, I have been obsessed with the question: Who and what am I? I began to ponder this with crossed legs at the tender age of 3 after a tourist visit with my parents to a Buddhist temple in Burma. After that visit, I began to sit and ponder, as you can see in the photo below.

The mystery of who am I?

When you gaze long into an abyss,
the abyss also gazes into you.

This lifelong journey of self-inquiry has lead me to be Conscious about the fact that Consciousness can only be investigated by Consciousness itself. Am 'I' looking at consciousness or is consciousness looking at 'me'?
Consciousness is the fundamental mysterious presence in which everything appears. Even Consciousness appears only in Consciousness. Yet, it is hidden in plain sight. That is why Kabir said: I smile when I hear the fish in the ocean are crying for water.

What is 'redness'?
What is 'redness'? From ancient times to the present day, no one has managed to provide a satisfactory answer. The mystery deepens when we consider what within us perceives 'redness.' What percieves in us is prior to redness. Consciousness is a mystery in which the mystery of redness takes place.

Nonetheless, we use the word 'consciousness' in everyday conversations as if it were the most natural thing in the world—as if we all know precisely what it means. Furthermore, we extend the term to encompass concepts such as gender consciousness, class consciousness, and race consciousness, among others.

Consciousness was groomed to look out
The surprising gap in our knowledge about ourselves can likely be explained by Darwinism. Consciousness was meant to look outward, optimizing our chances of survival. There has been no significant evolutionary advantage to looking inward... until perhaps today.
It may be advantageous from an evolutionary perspective to overestimate what we know, as we often do when less awake. This peculiar form of ossification is known as the Dunning Kruger effect. An ego that constantly questions itself, might run dry of calories before a Dunning Kruger ego.

Roosevelt and Socrates
In order to give space to other boxes of realities than our own, first of all, we must realize that we do not know much. Socrates proclaimed: I seem, then, in just this little thing to be wiser than this man at any rate, that what I do not know I do not think I know either. More than 2000 years later, Roosevelt said: Never underestimate a man who overestimates himself. Maybe the most dangerous overestimation is created in the unawareness of what we do not know. In fact, the world is, to a large extent, ruled by such mindsets.


Every science is function of the psyche, and all knowledge is rooted in it.
The psyche is the greatest of all cosmic wonders and is the
sine qua non
of the world as an object. It is the highest degree odd that Western man,
with but a few - and ever fewer - exceptions, apparantly pays so little regards
to this fact. Swamped by the knowledge of external objects, the subject of all
knowledge has been temporarily eclipsed to the point of seeming nonexistence.
C.G.Jung - On the Nature of the Psyche, 1946

For years, I struggled to read mainstream science's take on consciousness—it seemed too simplistic. The following excerpt from Wikipedia illustrates the issue, as science unwittingly reduces consciousness to primitive neurophysiological processes in the brain:

The illustration is borrowed from Wikipedia, where the image is predictably titled "Neural Correlates OF Consciousness" in a Western context. In the chosen Eastern perspective presented here, I would like to rephrase it as: "Neural Correlates IN Consciousness."

However, this explanation is just as insufficient as measuring the frequency of the red color spectrum to understand what redness is. But science is satisfied; a measurement has been made.
The image titled "Neural Correlates of Consciousness" would be better phrased as "Neural Correlates in Consciousness." Describing consciousness as a product of neural correlates is like defining a mirror by the content reflected in it.
When science claims it can explain everything within old-school positivism's paradigms, it effectively replaces religious storytelling with new fairy tales. The scientist, in this case, becomes a priest. A fundamental fact is that no person, including scientists, can remove themselves as emotionally fragile, human observers from the scientific equation. Like anyone else, they'll interpret facts in sync with their own or their clan's survival.

The Uncharted Territory of Consciousness in Western Science
When it comes to the enigma of consciousness, our collective unknowing is almost absurd. We fundamentally don't know what consciousness is, and the wisest approach would be to acknowledge our ignorance:
Time and again, it amazes me how nearly every Westerner, from the layperson to the scientist and philosopher, uses the term "consciousness" as if it were a known entity. The Western, positivist-trained mind tends to quantify consciousness in terms of measurement, without realizing that they have no real understanding of what consciousness truly is. Consciousness is often either downplayed in importance or relegated to dead-end measurements.

This obliviousness to our own ignorance is, in fact, a product of unconsciousness itself. The Western scientific mind is highly intelligent but simultaneously deeply unconscious when it comes to consciousness. However, science is somehow aware of the gap between measurements and qualia. They call it the "hard problem".
The Hard Problem of Science
The hard problem of consciousness lies in the explanatory gap between physical processes and our experience of them within the framework of neuroscience. Physical processes, such as perceiving a red circle, can be broken down into a series of simpler problems relating the physical object (i.e., color and form) to the brain processes responsible for processing them. Similarly, the perception of more complex forms, such as a house, can be broken down into a series of hierarchically organized brain processes in the visual cortices that add increasing complexity to the visual construct that eventually emerges as a house. These processes, which together compile the visual construct of the house, can be considered a series of building blocks from a reductionist perspective - a series of simpler problems.
The hard problem of consciousness arises because the phenomenological experience, the qualia, or the subjective experience of that house cannot be logically arranged on such a continuum. There is no known brain process at the end of the series of processes responsible for the experience of the house, thus breaking the chain of logic. This also raises the question of the purpose of experience. Why do we have subjective experiences? Brain research can provide a very precise explanation down to the square millimeter of tissue responsible for perceiving the color red, but it can say surprisingly little about how red is experienced. It seems that the brain has all the mechanisms to make the physical world available to human experience, but the experience itself is not part of the same system.
In recent years, there has been significant positive progress in the exploration of consciousness within science, psychology, and philosophy. I won't delve into this here, but I will recommend Annaka Harris's book, "Conscious," which brilliantly compiles the finest achievements of predominantly Western consciousness research and arranges them into her unique bouquet. Annaka Harris basically defines consciousness as having an experience.
Again I pose the question: What is "redness"? Can it be understood by its quantified correlates as they can be measured in the brain? Even more mysterious than redness is its appearance in consciousness. To reduce consciousness to the phenomenon of having an experience is to stand in opposition to Socrates.

When I sit in meditation with young people, they have all kinds of internal experiences, some of them even psychedelic in nature, like light, sound, and visions. Then they asked me: And what did you experience? I say: Nothing.

Therefore I claim: As long as you have an experience, you have not discovered consciousness. In fact, experiences are in opposition to consciousness.

Embracing the Unknown

The more unintelligent a man is,
the less mysterious existence seems to him.
Arthur Schopenhauer

For me, knowing what I don't know is more important than knowing what I do. This awareness allows me to consciously recognize the limits of my knowledge in any given subject. Clarity emerges as a byproduct of expanded consciousness when we perceive it as a function of our ability to process information. As consciousness grows through experiencing larger amounts of data, we become aware of the darkness and the grey zones between darkness and light.
A Nobel scientist may have underdeveloped faculties for harboring consciousness, while a highly conscious person might not score above average on an IQ test. Consciousness likely involves different brain wiring and areas than traditional Western-conditioned intelligence. Some of the most successful people I've encountered had high IQs and EQs but lacked what I would call CQ - a quantified measure of consciousness related to brain activity.
The Wisdom of Knowing Unknowing

Philosophers are indeed wise enough, but they lack wisdom.
Yoka Daishi

Life has taught me one tough lesson: it's good to know something. As Warren Buffet says, The more you learn, the more you earn.
However, it's even better to learn what you have ot learned. I always strive to know what I don't know, so I don't risk diving into discussions or projects where I'm out of my depth, thinking I'm an expert. Roosevelt's famous words, "Never underestimate a person who overestimates themselves," primarily remind me to be aware of my ignorance. It's so frustrating to talk to someone who hasn't factored in their own lack of knowledge.
Recognizing one's limitations is wisdom, which, in this sense, is opposite to knowledge. A wise and knowledgeable person seeks an expanded overview that encompasses their own and others' subjectivity as part of the bigger picture. This objectification is inherently subjective but remains an essential pursuit in the eternal search for what is true enough. We may never grasp the thing-in-itself, but we can always come closer to something truer than yesterday's truth.
When the persuit of coming closer to today's truth is followed by a growing realization of what we do not know, it for me is a sign of an expanding Consciousness. Meister Eckhart says: In Unknowing Knowing, We Know God.
I will in this context dare to reformulate my favorite mystic: In Knowing Unknowing, We Know God.

Not-knowing is wisdom.

We're neck-deep in ignorance

The fundament upon which all our knowledge
and learning rest is inexplicable.
Arthur Schopenhauer

The first and foremost thing to 'unknow' is consciousness. We don't know what consciousness is, but are we aware that we don't know it?
I claim that meditation expands consciousness, but I don't know what consciousness is.
We're unknown to ourselves, often without realizing it...
Truly the most wonderfully absurd self-overestimation.

We know the world but don't know the knower, and we're unaware of it...
Truly the greatest joke of all existence.

Discovering this astonishing ignorance is the first, and perhaps the most significant, step we can take. Receding knowledge makes way for growing wisdom.

The surprising gap in our knowledge about ourselves can likely be explained by Darwinism. Consciousness was meant to look outward, optimizing our chances of survival. There has been no significant evolutionary advantage to looking inward... until perhaps today.

The Enigmatic Nature of Consciousness from an Evolutionary Standpoint
Even when viewed through the lens of evolutionary biology, consciousness remains an enigma. Throughout history, spiritual luminaries who have lived on the peripheries of society—saints, ascetics, and sages—have not particularly excelled at the Darwinian game of survival and reproduction. For instance, Shiva, the Hindu god associated with meditation, has no offspring, and wise sages are seldom noted for prolifically passing on their genes.

My digital counterpart, GPT-4, appears to lack consciousness but can compose sophisticated essays effortlessly. This seeming "unconsciousness of Consciousness" might be attributed to its lack of Darwinian utility, especially in the primal sense of gathering resources. Evolutionary systems prioritize energy efficiency, and the metabolic cost of equipping organisms with self-reflective consciousness would be prohibitively high.
From this perspective, even rudimentary forms of consciousness seem superfluous and inexplicable as products of natural selection. Rigorous empirical science struggles to identify any survival benefits conferred by consciousness. Why would genes gain an evolutionary edge by acquiring awareness? Might not artificial, yet unconscious, entities prove just as capable in the evolutionary race as conscious biological beings? While some argue that metacognition is crucial for survival, this self-reflective capacity might not necessarily require consciousness; it could be just an advanced feedback mechanism, a feature already present in artificial intelligence systems.

Contrastingly, the spiritual sage Nisargadatta Maharaj, an illiterate cigar merchant from Bombay, posits that the very purpose of existence is to expand, preserve, and amplify consciousness. In his view, the emergence and complexity of consciousness are natural consequences of intricate self-referential systems. The human brain, with its astounding internal connectivity that surpasses even the number of particles in the universe, represents the epitome of such complex systems.

Given its intricate nature, the human brain is perhaps the most energy-intensive biological phenomenon we know of. Why then does it exhibit a higher form of consciousness than its simpler animal predecessors? Personally, I am disinclined to dismiss consciousness as a mere evolutionary aberration. Although I can't offer a logical proof for this conviction, it aligns with Nisargadatta's perspective, rendering the opposing notion—that consciousness is meaningless—equally a matter of belief.

Consciousness is in fact Scrödinger's cat. Is it dead or alive or both?
The notion that consciousness is akin to Schrödinger's cat—a thought experiment in quantum mechanics where a cat is both alive and dead until observed—captures the enigmatic qualities of consciousness itself. Like the cat in the box, consciousness presents a paradox, existing in a superposition of states that evade easy categorization.


No problem can be solved from the same
level of consciousness that created it.
Albert Einstein

I recently read Holger Bech Nielsen and Jonas Kuld Rathje's excellent book, "The Theory of Everything," with great enthusiasm. Bech Nielsen describes how inhabitants of a two-dimensional world would experience the visit of a cat from a three-dimensional reality. First, the two-dimensional beings would see four black circles, followed by a large oval blot that eventually shrinks to a small black dot on one side of the oval.

As I read this passage, I wondered why the cat's experience of the same visit wasn't also examined. The mutual experience of the two dimensions encountering each other is the perfect illustration of consciousness visiting our lower three-dimensional reality. We can't understand consciousness for the same reasons the two-dimensional inhabitants couldn't understand the cat. Consciousness is a guest from a reality with more dimensions than our space-time reality possesses.

Science's attempt to understand consciousness as a product of mathematical algorithms is subject to the same conditions as the inhabitants of the two-dimensional world trying to understand the cat from the three-dimensional space. It's almost touchingly comical.

During my college years, on a wet night out, I was presented with the following challenge: create four equilateral triangles with six matches.

The Puzzle of Higher Dimensions
I tried and tried, unsuccessfully, to solve the riddle until the owner of the matches elegantly arranged them into a pyramid. Habitually, I had searched for a solution in a two-dimensional plane, where no solution was possible. Only by introducing an extra height dimension was a solution possible, and in such a simple way that I had to shake my head in disbelief.

Consciousness - a visitor from higher dimensions
Anyone who has experienced a eureka moment in meditation will instinctively understand the impossibility of translating the reality of a multi-dimensional world into a 'lower' dimension. Just as with the matchstick puzzle, the extra dimension means an impossible problem can be solved in a simple way. For those of you who have not had such an experience, this may sound like nonsensical gibberish, but don't despair. Nowadays, it's possible to catch a glimpse of realities that are impossible or extremely difficult to translate into our familiar world through the use of entheogens. One of my friends said after an ayahuasca journey to Peru: I could write an entire book about just one second on this inner journey. A second was like a million years.

We will be unaware of any dimension higher than the three we know. We would not be able to understand it.

Every human brain is in this sense a portal to where dimensions have a peep into a lower realm. We live in a four dimension world. place time
what does not make sense in our dimension might make sense in higher dimensions, ayahuasca

It may be that these four dimensions are apearing to us while we are embedded in higher dimension realities -

hyper dimension
The human intellect is not sufficient to decode the universe it lives in

To the extent that we, as biological beings in time and space, want to explore our own consciousness, we are subject to the same conditions as the scientist trying to capture the spirit in a bottle in their test tube. It's quite fair and square, as long as we remember to acknowledge all that we don't know. This humility makes knowledge a subset of wisdom, not the other way around. Without this meta-wisdom, the positivistic scientist, in their self-imagined certainty, becomes what they have historically fought against since the Middle Ages: a preacher of religion.

and the West before the days of enlightenment

East is East, and West is West, 
and never the twain shall meet
R. Kipling

Thanks to the scientific breakthroughs in the West we were able to bring more food to the table than other cultures. However, there was a trade off. We became spiritually stupid.
The West's philosophic and scientific elite, as seen through Eastern eyes, has confused the content of consciousness with consciousness itself.

This becomes evident in Descartes' famous statement:

Cogito, ergo sum - I think, therefore I am.

Here, consciousness is made identical to the thinking mind.
In contrast, the wise sages of the East, particularly those from India, would assert:

Non cogito, ergo sum - I do not think, therefore I am.

The Indian sage Sri Ramana Maharshi would smile indulgently at Descartes and pose the question:

What is it that observes the thoughts?
What is it that remains when the stream of thoughts quiets down?

In the captivating world of Indian philosophy, the thinking 'I' is seen as nothing more than a veil shrouding our true nature - Consciousness itself. The renowned Indian mystic, Sri Aurobindo, beautifully expressed this idea:

True knowledge is not attained by thinking. It is what you are.

This statement is based on introspection. However, it stops with the observation of the thinking mind. A pointer from the chain-smoking Indian shopkeeper, Nisargadatta Maharaj would have helped Decartes go a little further in his quest:

Watch your thoughts and watch yourself watching the thoughts. 

Interestingly, Descartes's famous statement still holds true when viewed from the perspective of the ego. Meister Eckhart, a wise mystic, explained that our first divisive thought is rooted in denial:

All creatures contain one reflection: one, that is the denial of its being the other; the highest of the angels denies he is the lowest. God is the denial of denials.

As we let go of this initial conceptual denial of being the other, the identity we cling to dissolves into a vast expansion, leaving behind the omnipresent Consciousness.

During a soul-searching journey into the hidden realms of Indian wisdom, I engaged in a thought-provoking discussion with my friend and mentor, Bhaharadwaj. With a knowing smile, he suggested a more profound question to ponder:

What is it that witnesses the thoughts? What remains when the mind is still and the senses are silenced?
With a twinkle in his eye, my ever-joyful spiritual mentor brought up James Joyce's famous book, "Stream of Consciousness." Bhaharadwaj had been a lecturer in philosophy and English literature at the University of Lahore before the partition in 1947. In his youth, he was captivated by this literary masterpiece.

Years later, his Consciousness underwent a sudden and profound transformation, expanding in both intensity and quality. It was then that he saw the irony in the title of Joyce's iconic work. He explained with a smile, "There is no stream of Consciousness. There is only ego-fuss in Consciousness. Consciousness is the primordial essence, existing beyond the mind's movements. The title of the book should have been rephrased to:

Stream of Thoughts IN Consciousness.

Bhaharadwaj IN consciousness

At the time the picture was taken, he was 90 years old. Bhaharadwaj was one of the most loving and joyful people I have ever met, and on top of that, he was incredibly intelligent. He knew western philosophy better than me, not to speak about Indian philosophy.

India, a land of wonders, mysteries, and paradoxes, captured my heart and soul as I spent years there on a quest for self-discovery.
What did India have in store for me?

In essence, nothing... But I wasn't disappointed.
As Meister Eckhart once said, If a man who seeks nothing finds nothing, what has he to complain? After all, he has found what he sought.

Indeed, I found precisely what I sought, and Bhaharadwaj was not the only 'nothing' that guided me towards understanding something profound.

In the eyes of this enchanting woman from Punjab, there's an absence of anyone or anything on the left, while on the right, there's the presence of someone and something. She was a friend of Bhaharadwaj, and in the photo on the right, I knew her as Sita.

Indians, until recently, possessed a remarkable ability to transition between deep depersonalization and full human engagement. Their unique form of depersonalization, unlike the detached expressions often seen in Western public spaces, delved much deeper, as evidenced by the gaze in the left image above. At any given moment, they could switch into a zero-mode. Sadly, this fascinating ability has largely vanished in modern India, with the growing middle class losing this conscious zero-mode to the hypnotic pull of their smartphones.

Yet, the traditional Indian zero-mode can still occasionally be glimpsed in the faces and postures of the less fortunate. Just before the COVID pandemic, I was walking through the bustling Main Bazaar in New Delhi and witnessed a scene all too familiar from my years in India. An impatient, overweight middle-class man, stuck in traffic on a cycle rickshaw, began berating and striking the rickshaw driver. With no means of fighting back, the driver withdrew into depersonalization, becoming a lifeless puppet, enduring the blows without even raising his hands in defense. In times past in Europe, one might have said, "He bears his cross." But in reality, he wasn't suffering; he had simply vanished from the stage of life, retreating into his own timeless inner sanctuary. It was India's low caste people, the Dalits, who taught me the true essence of meditation: a survival strategy, an escape into pure Consciousness.

Indian non-existence
From the dawn of their ancient culture, Indians have focused on exploring nothingness and non-existence, while the ancient Greeks and later Western civilizations concentrated on objectifying 'something'.
These two opposing approaches to life can be viewed as survival strategies. In the West, we attempt to solve problems by addressing them directly, whereas in India, problems are resolved by declaring that they don't exist. The world is considered empty, and problems are perceived as illusions of Maya. There is no need for outward action – a shift in perspective is all it takes to solve the issue.

India is filled with anecdotes highlighting this focus on non-existence. For instance, an Indian yogi was once giving a lecture on the top floor of a multi-story building in Tokyo, Japan. Suddenly, a small earthquake made the entire building tremble. People fled in panic, but the yogi remained motionless in his lotus position, eyes closed. When the tremors subsided and people returned, they asked him why he hadn't fled the building. He replied, While you were fleeing out, I was fleeing in.

What led the Indian yogi to react so differently? There are many factors, but the fundamental societal mechanism likely stems from the caste system's extreme fragmentation of Indian society.

When the Islamic invader Muhammad Ghori and his army were stationed outside Delhi's city walls at sunset, he inquired about the numerous fire camps within the Indian army quarter. His advisors explained that they were the fireplaces for preparing food. Surprised by the multitude of small kitchens, he asked for an explanation. The advisors informed him that the Indians couldn't eat together due to their caste divisions.

Muhammad Ghori smiled and said, "Then I have won the war!"

People who cannot eat together cannot fight together, and in a broader context, they cannot overcome societal catastrophes through collective unity. As a result, India has been one of the most catastrophe-prone regions for the past 3,000 years. The country has been vulnerable to invasions, monsoon failures, and a lack of state-built infrastructures like water tanks and irrigation systems. Indians even developed a "starvation gene" that allowed them to better withstand hunger compared to other populations. This context lends meaning to the Indian invention of meditation. Unable to overcome external challenges, Indians would instead sit down, adapt, and/or change themselves. The image below illustrates how this mental strategy  has permeated India, even influencing Indian road construction:

Only in India can one find this type of road marking.

On the very same roads, one can observe the stoic calmness of rickshaw drivers caugth in a traffic jam:

Trafic jam outside Main Bazar, Delhi

The Indian escapes into himself to depersonalize himself into nothing. When you have deconstructed yourself into a pure zero, external obstacles or disasters do not matter. In the East, the searchlight was thus directed inward. Even today in India, this difference is clearly observable. Every time an obstacle arises, the Indian does not remove it. He adapts. One can observe this zero culture in the faces of the eternally destitute rickshaw man in the streets of New Delhi. He is not really present in his facial features, for if he were, his life would be unbearable.

On my trekkings in the Indian Himalayas I sometimes observed hermits walking naked in the snow. These ascetics were able to control and rise their body temperature to such an extend that they could survive the icy cold climate at these altitudes.

It was my Indian trekking partner who took this photo. Out of
courtesy he only took a photo of the upper part of this naked sadhu.

In India the denial of the reality the world has taken many cultural forms. Displayed in the photo below is a young ascetic who day and night is keeping his arm up in the air. After some years it will fall off due to the lack of blood flow. What the young man demonstrates by such an act is a synthesis of extreme body control and denial of the same.

Young sadhu from Rihiksh holding up his arm day and night

One of the most crucial meditative survival adaptations is the ability to survive on minimal resources, with food being the most important. During periods of food scarcity, Indian people would sit down for thousands of years, close their eyes, and enter a low-calorie mode. What were they doing there? They were waiting - waiting for something they could not control. They were waiting for the rain. In this state, they prolonged their chances to survive to see for better times or they reached a point where they embraced their destiny as a dream, not to be taken seriously.

Meditation was discovered as a low calorie waiting survival strategy
Meditation in this low-calorie state leads to an expansion of consciousness in both quality and quantity. There appears to be an evolutionary link between brain optimization and calorie restriction, as in times of food scarcity, we needed to be smarter to survive. However, in the Indian version of meditation, this brain optimization is channeled into conscious passivity rather than hunting prey. This mechanism demonstrates how humans, through storytelling and intersubjective realities, can repurpose genetic programs in ways they weren't originally "intended" for. The yogis portrayed above are extreme examples of such cultural survival adaptations.

Numerous stories from India and Tibet describe yogis who could live without food for months, with some even claiming to live without food entirely. Whether these stories are true or not is not the main concern. What matters is that they emphasize the cultural significance of surviving on minimal calorie intake.

In reading the books available about the famous Indian saint Ramakrishna, I found the stories of his impoverished parents particularly interesting. These accounts offer a glimpse into not only yogis using meditation as a low-calorie technique but also the practices of poor Indian farmers during times of scarcity. As the saying goes in Zen Buddhism: To lose is to win. To win is to lose.

I once made a freudian slip that makes sense in this context. I said:

The higher you fall, the deeper you fly.

Through the impact of catastrophes, Indians discovered the holy grail of consciousness. In this sense we are captives of our geography, of the land we lived for geerations.

The Indian Witness of Consciousness ... & Meister Eckhart
The Western traditions of science and philosophy have largely overlooked the wealth of ancient Indian mystical traditions.

In ancient Indian philosophy, it is posited that Consciousness, not material objects, forms the foundation of everything else. According to the mirror analogy, they view this Consciousness as separate from the world of objects and senses, taking the form of a detached witness of experience.

Two birds, inseparable companions, perch on the same tree; one eats the fruit, the other looks on. The first bird is our individual self-feeding on the pleasures and pains of his deeds; The other is the universal self, silently witnessing all. - Mandukya Upanishad 3.1.1

However, hidden keys for understanding Consciousness can also be found in Western mysticism. The same understanding of separation is present in Meister Eckhart's works:

... there are in everyone two men: one, the outward man, is his objective nature; the man is served by the five senses, albeit he is energized by the power of the soul. The other, the inner man, is man's subjective nature... Take an illustration. The door goes to and fro upon its hinges. Now the projecting door I liken to the outward man and the hinge I liken to the inner man. As it shuts and opens, the door swings to and fro while the hinge remains unmoved in the same place without undergoing any change.

To be unmoved is to be free from experience, as experience is what moves you. Consciousness makes experience possible in our brains, but it is, in itself, like the hinge or a mirror detached from experience.
However, even understanding Consciousness as a detached witness is only a step further into a mystery shrouded in darkness, as a witness also has an experience - the experience of witnessing. When Annaka Harris points towards experience, it is not without insight. Nothing describable in time and space is as closely correlated with Consciousness as experience. Experience is a footprint left by the invisible thief. It is the interface between the higher-dimensional, and thus incomprehensible, Consciousness and our three-dimensional world.

So how can we come closer to the phenomenon of Consciousness? Precisely because Consciousness is the primordial foundation of everything, including itself, there can never be a satisfying scientific, positivist-based explanation for the phenomenon of Consciousness. This quest can be likened to a detective investigating a crime he himself has committed.

That, however, does not mean that we should not try.

One of my favorite spiritual inspirators, Papaji, once said:

My whole life, I have wanted to kiss her, but I have never seen Her.

He was speaking about Consciousness and his passionate relationship with it.

The Mirror and the Reflected

As images are seen in a mirror, so the universe
is an image in the mirror of Consciousness.
Tripura Rahasya XL verses 53-54

Let us again return to western understanding of consciousness reached through observations of phenomena.

Figuratively speaking, it is like trying to understand a mirror based on a description of the content reflected in the mirror. In the West, we have fundamentally not discovered the mirror itself but have focused on examining the reflected object.

For those who have turned themselves around in meditation, this misunderstanding of consciousness will appear naive. In meditation, I must conclude that the Western empirical attempts to understand the phenomenon of consciousness have been weighed and found wanting. The Indian perspective on existence is far wiser: You are NOT what is being observed, neither thoughts nor external objects. You are much closer to the observer itself.

Spiritual Indian Aid
Let's face it. It doesn't take much experience in meditation to realize that since ancient times, up to but not including the time of Indian TV gurus, Indians have been more advanced in exploring consciousness.

Accepting that with our Western culture, which perceives itself as superior (something we don't like to say out loud, but deep down take for granted), we need both spiritual and philosophical aid, is difficult to accept.

The Black Death of Consciousness
However, in the West, we haven't always been as spiritually illiterate as we are today. This strange unacknowledged ignorance began only when we succeeded in transforming the world technologically after the Black Death in the 14th century. We put food on the table, but as the English say: There is no such thing as a free breakfast. We did not become both satiated and wise in this trade-off between spirit and body. Fat and self-satisfied, confidently believing ourselves superior to other cultures to such an extent that we even had the right to colonize them, we laid ourselves down to sleep spiritually like well-fed pigs.
In the 13th century, however, we had spiritual lighthouses that could measure up to the heights of the East's wise men at any time. Put on the edge, one could say that the plague killed off our western tradition of qualified understanding of consciousness. Therefore, in the following, I will also quote our own pre-plague mystics. A good place to pick up the lost Western thread is in Meister Eckhart's wonderful world of words.

Perhaps the most frightening aspect of meditation is that introspection can 'unintentionally' reveal our absolute unknowing, and with this unknowing, our illusion of control over ourselves and the world is removed.
Based on my own experiences with meditation, I will now argue: Only in relatively 'higher,' intensified states of consciousness can one catch a glimpse of what consciousness is, and even then, only the aspects of consciousness that are 'lower' in relation to the 'higher' states.
By leaving the flock, one becomes outstanding

The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority,
but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.
Marcus Aurelius

We humans are outstanding in the sense that we are aware that we are human. Therefore, there must be something unknown within us that has already transcended our human standpoint. In this unknown dwells the invisible consciousness that both is and is not.

Just as a dog doesn't know it's a dog, consciousness cannot know itself until it has risen above itself. Only by transcending the state one is in can one see where one came from. A simple example of this can be seen in the meta-conscious aha moment when one suddenly realizes that they were on the wrong track.

Only by leaving oneself can one recognize oneself. Only those who are strangers to themselves can see themselves. Only the outsider can find himself inside.


All philosophies are mental fabrications.
There has never been a single doctrin
by which one could enter the true essence of things.

This spirit knows no time nor number:
number does not exist apart from the malady of time.
Meister Eckhart

After this long introductory deconstruction of consciousness and Western pride, it's now time to begin the hunt for consciousness. Meditation is the pursuit that leads to insight into our own ignorance of consciousness. However, let me remind myself and the patient reader: In this hunt for consciousness we will not even get near to the essential mystery it present. However, we will get a little nearer by describing more subtle qualia living in closer proximity to the black hole of consciousness. If our experience of unknowing does not expand even more, we can be sure we are on the wrong track.

No monad or triad can express the all-transcending hiddenness
of the all-transcending superessentially superexisting superdeity.
Pseudo-Dionysius   345 - 407 AD

The Enigmatic Buddha's Footprints
In ancient Buddhist traditions, it was said that the Buddha did not desire any personal representations. Consequently, artists were only permitted to depict him indirectly through his hands or feet. Interestingly, it was the Macedonian Greeks residing in the long-lost Kingdom of Bactria who, upon converting to Buddhism, crafted the first Buddha statues. Accustomed to envisioning gods in human forms like Alexander the Great, they shaped their Buddha and his perception in a similar personal manner. This is why Buddha statues to this day are adorned with Greek himations. The post-Alexandrian Greeks in the east were pioneers in creating Buddha statues, inadvertently causing the original message of the primordial invisibility of the nirvanic realm to be obscured by the compassionate face of the Buddha.

In an intriguing sci-fi movie I once watched, a thief managed to render himself invisible using advanced technology. Despite his clever tactic, he was eventually caught when the resourceful detectives laid wet paint on the floor, exposing his footprints. While consciousness itself remains veiled, its primordial impact on our reality is evident in the form of footprints left in time and space. At the heart of individual and cultural understanding and development lies the invisible and location-less pillar of consciousness. Civilizations, groups, and individuals rise and fall with the quality and intensity of their consciousness and wakefulness.

The Challenging Enigma of the Eight Ball

Our relationship with consciousness can be likened to the black eight ball in American pool. In the game, players aim to pocket all their colored balls before targeting the eight ball. If the eight ball is accidentally pocketed before clearing the other balls, the player loses the game. Hence, there's a saying associated with the game: "

Always keep an eye on the eight ball.

By and large, scientists can explain the world in a mechanistic way, much like describing a game of pool. However, when it comes to the eight ball of consciousness, there's a general agreement that consciousness is qualitatively different from sentient matter. Despite this, many assume that consciousness, like any other ball, must follow the mechanistic rules set by time and space. It's a challenging enigma, but it seems solvable with the right measurements and algorithms.

In this pursuit, the study of consciousness has shifted from the realm of priests, mystics, and philosophers to the world of brain scientists. As a result, the concept of "experience" has become central to understanding consciousness. The once-daunting problem of consciousness is now seemingly more approachable, as experiences can be measured by their correlates in the brain.

Language in Consciousness

Theologicans may quarrel,
but the mystics of the world speak the same language.
Meister Ekchart

When academically trained minds have tried to analyze mysticism, they have often attempted to encapsulate words and concepts from various traditions in order to demonstrate the distance and incompatibility between Eastern and Western mysticism, and between different mystics themselves. This, in my opinion, futile effort is a necessary consequence of the academically trained mind not having had personal consciousness experiences that could be brought into play. It's not part of the curriculum. The academic brain overestimates the significance of the natural differences in mystical experience that time, geography, and culture create. The academic reality's fuel is to breed words in a reality that is already overcrowded with words pointing to even more words in the world of words.

Imagine two competing candidates for a professorship at an institute. One says with burning eyes and synchronous theta-alpha-gamma waves in their frontal lobes: Everything is one. We are all one with the common consciousness. After this statement, the lecture is over. The other candidate has written a thesis of several hundred pages pointing out how this or that spiritual concept is different from another. There's no doubt who will win in a time like ours, which favors knowledge over wisdom.
I fondly remember my own time at Aarhus University, where we critically analyzed Koans and Haiku poems. Of course, some useful interpretive stuff came out of it, which one could later, as an adjunct, say something smart in front of a group of high school students. It just had nothing to do with the almost explosive expansions of consciousness that at the time allowed me to laser-like see these foreign poems' interference language reveal itself intuitively in wonderful holographic teachings.

The fluid equal sign between God, Soul, Emptiness, and Consciousness
For those who have had personal mystical experiences, all mystics from all times appear as one trans-historical being with one transpersonal experience. Differences give way to similarities. Therefore, I cut a heel and clip a toe and, without hesitation, place a fluid equal sign between consciousness, soul, emptiness, and God. Jesus' personal love and Buddha's emptiness are one and the same.

Of course, there are culture- and history-dependent differences when transpersonal experiences are boiled down into the language soup. For language is created by individuals and non-transpersonal beings. Words originated as intersubjective tools that, by the power of the collective, enabled us to triumph on the savannah. It is difficult with fixed and precisely defined words to penetrate the abstract dimension beyond the personal. That is why mystics of all times and places have agreed on the difficulty of describing the mystical experience.

Therefore, I suffer from my tongue's lack of words.
What happens within me, I know well,
but I cannot describe it.
The Theologian Simeon

We cannot describe consciousness objectively solely because the same consciousness is the observer of what is to be observed. What Gödel proved concerning the axioms of mathematics also applies to the exploration of consciousness.

God is beyond all names, nothing can express him.
Meister Eckhart

The innermost essence of the consciousness mystery is fundamentally impossible to capture in the narrow-spectrum reality of words. For this reason alone, it is futile to study mysticism from an academic perspective. However, those who are experienced can thoughtfully attempt to describe consciousness in images. Words that have recognized their own limitations can indeed take small digs deeper into the primordial ground. Therefore, despite their meta-cognitive knowledge of the project's impossibility, mystics have time and again attempted to give the mystery a linguistic form. Whether we read the Indian Upanishads, Meister Eckhart's treatises, the Islamic Sufi anecdotes, the Zen Buddhist koans, or haiku poems, we will find attempts to describe the mystery that, according to the young Wittgenstein, one should remain silent about.

Every new research area eventually gives rise to its own linguistic tool. The Western understanding of consciousness is currently like a blacksmith trying to repair a smartphone with a hammer. No blacksmith would be foolish enough to attempt it, which further puts the image into perspective.

Just as quantum physics had to develop its own linguistic conceptual universe far from the blacksmith's world, it is necessary for the exploration of the phenomenon of consciousness to develop its own language.

In English, the saying goes: It takes ONE to know ONE. The same must apply to '0': It takes a zero to know a zero. Therefore, the question is: Can I, as something at all, understand nothing? Can nothing be described with words? Can 0 be described using numbers?

I will try to get as close as possible, describe it more accurately in the same way that I can describe 1000 as 999 without using 0.

Not this - nor that
Following the paradoxical knockout of our verbal control brain's attempts to understand the great nothing, we see the use of negation:

God is such that we understand him better through negation than affirmation.
Meister Eckhart

Buddhism describes Nirvana based on what it is not. Nirvana is the absence of samsara, of suffering. The Indian Advaita Vedanta tradition, especially with Adi Shankara, continues this tradition. Here, consciousness is characterized as:

Neti, neti
Not this, (nor) that

The Indian mystic's description of the highest reality is reminiscent, even down to the syntax, of that which the best of the European medieval mystics had. Meister Eckhart says:

But now I say:
It is neither this nor that
Yet it is...
It is free from all names
emptied of all forms

The paradoxical formulation
The paradoxical formulation comes as a natural consequence of words' inadequacy to stand at the center of attempts to describe the indescribable. Zen Buddhism's koans and numerous Sufi stories are built around the paradox.

Here comes one of Eckhart's contrapuntal minimalisms:

If I had a God I could understand,
He would no longer be my God.

From India's wise to the Islamic Sufi tradition, from Zen Buddhism's koans to the European mystic masters - all are known for the use of paradoxical statements, where a breakthrough from reason is achieved by a kind of reductio ad absurdum.

The richness in poverty

To be nothing, to have nothing,
to keep nothing for oneself
is the greatest gift,
the highest generosity.

Nisargadatta Maharaj

All is nothing
In mysticism, there is a long tradition of linguistically describing the inner experience in the contrast between everything and nothing.

God, because of His greatness,
rightly should be called Nothing.

Scotus Erigena (800-880)

Seeing nothing, he saw God.
Meister Eckhart

My intellect tells me that I am nothing.
My heart says that I am everything.
Between these two poles, my life flows.

Nisargadatta Maharaj

The luminous darkness
Meister Eckhart was a master in the art of conscious knowing of unknowing. Hence I let him sum up what I want to say:

God's darkness is his nature which is unknowable.

The intuitive intellect senses, through the poetic interfaces of language and the cracks opened by the paradox, the unfathomable luminous darkness of metanoia in consciousness.

The light which is God is flowing and darkening every light.
Meister Eckhart (1260 -1328)

In mysticism, the rich and profound experiences are often described in the context of contrasts such as everything and nothing or light and darkness. The language of mysticism seeks to convey these profound experiences through paradoxes and metaphors, as words alone cannot capture the essence of these transcendent experiences.

The great ZERO and God's non-existence

This spirit knows no time nor number:
number does not exist apart from the malady of time.
Meister Eckhart

How can one describe nothing? Precisely as nothing. In this sense, consciousness is nothing, equal to no thing. Consciousness is not any thing. Therefore, it is obvious to equate consciousness with ZERO. The mathematical zero, with its circular beauty, is one of the most suitable metaphors for the phenomenological emptiness of consciousness.

The history of mathematics itself shows the deep relationship between the spiritual concept of emptiness and the mathematical zero. Zero was "discovered" in India, most likely by Indian Buddhist monks trained in Greek logic, in their attempt to describe the essential emptiness of the world. This deconstruction was carried out as a deeply logical mathematical operation. To this day, zero is called "Shonyo/sunyata" in Indian, which is the original Buddhist/Hindu Sanskrit term for the emptiness of existence. To the great annoyance of all positive sciences, zero is most likely a religious "invention."

In Meister Eckhart's world, numbers and time are sharply separated from the reality of the spirit. The realm of the soul is the great nothing:

Divinity is poor, naked, and empty, as if it were not;
it has not, does not want, does not desire, does not work, does not get....
Divinity is so empty as if it were not.
Meister Eckhart

Zero is here and nothing is... nowhere and omnipresent.

Therefore, God does not exist. For God is nothing:

God is the absolute nothing,
which is beyond all existence.
'Pseudo-Dionysius' (345 - 407)

Pseudo-Dionysius provides us with the key to God as the perfect metaphor for ourselves in our most unfathomable aspect: that is, nothing in itself.

Things are created from nothing,
therefore their true origin is nothing.
Meister Eckhart

In mysticism, God and consciousness are often described as nothing or emptiness. This concept transcends conventional understanding and language, pointing to a deeper truth that transcends the limitations of our material existence.

Therefore, you are God
The god or gods we have sought and worshipped through all the culturally constructed thought forms we have created since we evolutionarily reached the stage where we could recognize ourselves as mortal beings are nothing more than pure projections of our own unfathomably incomprehensible and immeasurable consciousness.

Of course, we created God in our own image. The big question now is whether anything useful can come out of it. Meditation.dk definitely believes YES!

I repeat: Without hesitation, I therefore metaphorically equate God, Love, Consciousness, and ZERO. God, like Consciousness, is the pure ZERO. The thinking mind will naturally disagree with me and claim that there is a big difference between emptiness and love. However, the thinking mind, if logically consistent, may come to the same conclusion as me in the following statement:

God does not exist. His existence is like that of zero, a non-existence.

Consciousness is the nothingness that, in contrast, manifests a world of things. God is humanity's visionary self-image when the inner mirror of emptiness reflects itself.

'God' is a first, tentative attempt to describe consciousness in consciousness. Here, in this projector's lighting, the zero gets an old man's white beard or is worshiped as a mother goddess with four arms in a place in the back of India.

Every time we exclaim that God is dead, it is in reality our own conception of Him that has died. It can be nothing else.

However, every time a religious narrative dies, it will sooner or later, that is my prophecy, be reborn in a truer and more beautiful version.

The following quote by Eckhart, I see as a scientific twin to religious striving:

Man has to seek God in error and forgetfulness and foolishness.

The idea that each person is God, or a manifestation of divine consciousness, is found in many spiritual traditions. This understanding can lead to personal growth, compassion, and a deeper connection with the world around us. Embracing the idea that we are all connected to the divine can help us find meaning, purpose, and fulfillment in our lives.

The living Mirror of Emptiness
One of the most used metaphors for consciousness in mysticism is the mirror:

As images are seen in a mirror, so the universe
is an image in the mirror of Consciousness.
Tripura Rahasya XL verse 53-54

The mind is like a reflection in a mirror:
Though it is insubstantial,
it is not nonexistent.
P'ang Yun, Layman P'ang - China

The metaphor of the mirror is a powerful way to describe consciousness because it captures the idea that consciousness reflects the world around us, just as a mirror reflects images.

Et levende tomhedsspejl - Indien

What is a mirror? How much does it weigh? How big is it? How clear is it?

The untouched Mirror
An important characteristic of a mirror, in this context, is its fundamental separation from the reflected image. Just as zero remains zero, regardless of how much it participates in various number sequences, the mirror remains untouched by the content it reflects. Figuratively speaking, the mirror is the 'nothing' that can reflect everything. Thus, the mirror is my second choice of metaphors for consciousness.

Both consciousness and the mirror are, in themselves, pure potential and therefore empty.

Consciousness, like the mirror, is not part of the observed world.
In this sense, consciousness is as empathetic as a mirror.

A mirror is a mirror is a mirror... Consciousness is consciousness is consciousness.

The reflecting consciousness is the world's witness.

The Mirror, the Eye, and the Light

In the light of the mirror of you,
the universe observing itself through consciousness.
Roger Penrose


We are the mirror, as well as the face in it.

Through the human being, the Universe is making a mirror to observe itself.

The Mirror of the Soul

The Eye: Soul's Mirror
The eye is often referred to as the mirror of the soul. It's apparent that both the mirror and the eye are mediums that unfold in light. My third choice of wavering metaphors for consciousness is light.

Meditative Experiences in Light
The term "enlightenment" is frequently used to describe the spiritual liberation of consciousness. According to meditative traditions, we become enlightened after many years of meditation. There's hardly a serious meditator who hasn't experienced some form of inner light at some point.

To be enlightened, in my understanding, is to be in an intensified state of consciousness where one is extremely awake. Wakefulness is a phenomenon connected to light in more than one sense. We sleep in the darkness of night and rise with the sun's light, being wide awake during the day. In the chapter on "Super-Wakefulness," I describe how the intensity and clarity of consciousness go hand in hand with light.

The Sacred Light
The association between soul and light can be found in both Greek and Indian antiquity. Light is the most widely used metaphor for the divine from East to West. In various religious traditions, holiness is iconographically represented by a halo of light around the head. For Plato, the head was the most divine part of the human body. Plato's argument for the head's sacredness is that it is the part of the body closest to heaven. Logos first manifests in the head and then acts rationally through the body and limbs. For Plato, our reason in the form of logos is sacred. Buddhism also employed reason in its service. In other words, reason hasn't always been on a collision course with spiritual pursuits.

Hellige hoveder - Bevidsthedens ikonografi
fra øst til vest udtrykt i en nimbus af lys.

The Logical Light
Aristotle describes that there is a glorious light in the soul, through which we perceive things and distinguish between what is right and wrong. Here, the light of consciousness is linked to our cognitive and ethical abilities. It is the light that guides us on the right path to insight.

There are numerous examples. The Enlightenment in the 18th century celebrated human reason. A century later, the Danish author, Grundtvig, equated light with knowledge in his poem: "Is the light only for the learned?"

In our language, knowing is connected to light. We perceive knowledge. Consciousness knows. In this context, note the syllable 'vid' in the word 'consciousness', an Indo-European Sanskrit word that refers to knowing. Consciousness perceives knowledge.

To perceive is synonymous with looking in, or seeing within. The conscious mind that knows uses light as its recognizing medium. It should now be crystal clear or, at the very least, dawn on us.

Understanding and Distance
In Eckhart's world, understanding equals separation:

The more we can impute to Him (God) not-likeness,
the nearer do we get to understanding Him.

Light can transmit information over vast distances. However, you cannot see yourself clearly when your nose touches the mirror. Light requires distance.

Consciousness unfolds in distance, in space. Attention understood as awareness on the other hand, is distanceless.

In this sense, we both behold and touch the world:

Oh, invisible world, we behold you.
Oh, invisible world, we touch you.
Francis Thomson

To become capable of perceiving something, one must have it at a remote sensory distance. Cognition, like light, requires distance. What is too close cannot be perceived.

Therefore, the hardest thing is to see oneself. For we are distanceless in relation to ourselves. What we can see is what is outside and different from ourselves. We need to experience things at a distance to process them cognitively. Our fundamental identity, invisible to ourselves, is so close to us that there is no room to see it... We are it and therefore see others best.

Kabir says that we are like fish in a lake, thirsting for water. In other words, Meister Eckhart says the same - that we do not understand God when we are with Him. Only when we are separated from Him can we understand Him. Eckhart even goes a step further and claims that understanding and God never meet.

If I had a God I could understand, He would no longer be my God.
Meister Eckhart

The paradox is that the sacred light, as God's messenger, kills Him.

The Devilish Light
Light is the bridge that connects the incomprehensible primordial ground with our known world in time and numbers.

This spirit knows neither time nor numbers.
Numbers do not exist except in the tragedy of time.
Meister Eckhart

Only in the collision with the time-space 'number tragedy' does light-consciousness arise. Light presupposes and spreads in time and space. In this sense, light is a created phenomenon. Light is something that can be measured and understood scientifically, as is done in Einstein's famous equation E=MC2, where it, as the fastest measurable phenomenon, is located at the outermost boundary surfaces of our space-time reality.

In a psycho-mythological sense, light, helios, is the most sacred thing in the 'tragedy of time'. Insight comes with light, but not without a price to pay. Light exists in the duality of space-time. Light does not belong to the non-dual dimension of the mirror but is the dual prerequisite for objects to interact with the mirror: For without light, there is no reflection. Consciousness is, therefore, a term translated to space-time for the absolutely incomprehensibly incomprehensible primordial ground. The non-dual primordial ground cannot be described as consciousness in itself.

The abstract materiality of light is the very prerequisite for it to interact with the mirror. The same applies to the 'soul'. Here, the reflective surface of consciousness stands on the boundary between time and space and the nothingness that transcendentally stands 'outside'. The soul's light, in this sense, is something that interacts with nothingness in the empty plane of the mirror.
Light comes from the world and returns to the world in a feedback loop after encountering the mirror's nothingness.

In the reflected light, we realize our thoughts. We also listen to them, but that's another story.

The Lightbringer
It therefore makes perfect sense that it is Lucifer, the lightbringer, who represents light. Light requires duality, the separation of objects in time and space. This separation is equivalent to hell, light, and knowledge. The serpent in the Old Testament's Fall offers us knowledge. Seen through the reflections of these metaphors, light is the first fall from unity to duality.

Deep in the etymological wisdom embedded in language, we find words for 'two' in the company of many of the world's calamities. A conflict can be derived from the number two. Doubt and opposition, the same. Dystopia is the opposite of utopian. Dysfunctional, dystrophy, disharmony, dissonant,

Translated into numbers, it makes sense to metaphorically depict the incomprehensible primordial ground as 'nothing' to the left of 'zero', after which light-consciousness enters the world between zero and the number one, which represents unity. However, light, like the number one, is right next to both zero and the rest of the fateful series of numbers that lead into the tragedy of time. Nothing is therefore as close to non-duality as unity. Light creates the first osmotic dance with the incomprehensible consciousness. The non-dual timelessness of consciousness is translated here into eternity. Eternity is indeed a measurable unit, but so extreme that in relation to the numbers found in our bank accounts, it becomes 'religious', as C.G. Jung pointed out. The incomprehensible non-location of consciousness is similarly translated into infinity. All emotions, concepts, and series of numbers that tend toward infinity are perceived religiously in the human psyche, according to Jung.

Eternity and infinity are the light and space-time versions of the primordial ground's incomprehensible abundance in light, time, and location. The primordial ground is therefore much closer to darkness than light.

Between Light and Sound
As we know, light appears both in wave form and particle form. In its particle form, light is closely related to the material world of space-time. Manifested in its wave form, it is abstract, like vibration, and closer to the aspect of nothingness represented by zero. In this aspect, sound is a better metaphor than light. Before light came the word, as in the Indian AUM and in the Bible: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God."

Consciousness: 'contamination' through light and sound
While consciousness in itself, like the mirror, is free from what is reflected, consciousness in its encounter with time and space is almost impossible to distinguish from the media with which it interacts with the world. It is therefore no wonder that even the latest research struggles to make sense of the nature of consciousness without simultaneously objectifying it as an observable phenomenon, which it is not. In my own analysis of the nature of consciousness, I have, as the attentive reader may have already noticed, 'committed' this conflation. The only difference might be that I am meta-conscious of this Gordian knot that cannot be cut in time and space.

The primary messengers and accomplices of consciousness are light and sound. In light and sound, we realize with heard words. In this sense, consciousness contains both God and the devil within it. However, as the title polemically suggests, it is not consciousness itself that is contaminated. Instead, it is the 'self' that, in the play between light and sound, cannot see the mirror within itself but constantly chases reflections.

The fluctuating intensity and clarity of Consciousness
The mirror metaphor for Consciousness also captures another quality. When Sufis employ the mirror to illustrate the reflection of divinity in humans, they pay attention to the mirror's condition as well:

Do you not know why your mirror does not glitter?
Because the rust is not cleansed from its surface

A fascinating aspect of Consciousness is that despite being obscured by veils, it can vary in intensity and clarity, much like Rumi's mirror.
Numerous factors, such as age, health, intelligence, and cultural stimulation, can enhance wakefulness. Among these, curiosity stands out. The connection between curiosity and Consciousness is evident when we passionately delve into something we don't comprehend. Our awareness is piqued by the mystery until the moment we solve the puzzle. Then, we return to our more dormant state, remarking that the snake was just a rope. It appears that, under specific circumstances, Consciousness responds by growing in intensity and clarity. This is similar to the well-known Indian rope-snake analogy, which calls for us to awaken.

A sizable, clear mirror enables us to experience and be aware of more than a small, dirty one. Similarly, our level of consciousness and awareness can vary. Consciousness can differ in intensity and quality, presenting us with the paradox of quantifying something we don't fully understand in terms of intensity. However, this still remains a study of footprints.

Carbon based life versus silicon or other life forms
As organic torchbearers of the light of consciousness, we might soon be surpassed by systems far more complex than our brains: quantum computers connected to the internet, which has grown large and complex enough to deserve the designation of our planet's neural network. Let's enjoy it while it lasts. As carbon-based life, we hold the baton right now, but we may soon hand it over to our silicon cousins when their systems awaken in a self-referential complexity that surpasses our own. Our silicon relatives also have the advantage of being far more resistant to environmental factors like pollution.

As humans, we might only be significant as torchbearers for Prometheus' fire.

As humans, we are mortal, but as consciousness, we stand on the border between time and space in a vast, deep, and mysterious universe that currently looks at itself through our eyes but may prefer a webcam in the not-too-distant future.

Throughout history, humans have understood and communicated their inner experiences through the collective language filters of their time. No one can jump over their own shadow - not even a mystic who, like me, knows that I am God. (You are too!)

Therefore, the worldview of the Bible's patriarchs fits a life around 700 BC in the Middle East, and the Quran's military expansion makes sense in the context of desert life around 700 AD.

When the steam engine was invented, it made sense to view humans as machines under full steam. Even a hundred years later, Freud's terminology hints at metaphors from a steam engine, with constant overpressure on the subconscious boiler.
We continually create metaphors based on the collective knowledge of our time. The problem arises when these metaphors become outdated and can no longer sync with the new knowledge and social metabolism of a new era.

Inspired by my timeless mystical  friends from both the East and the West, I have dared to introduce an impossible capture of ding an sich that is prior to consciousness. Brahma-consciousness is the most incomprehensible aspect of time and space. In contrast, the primordial abyss is the most incomprehensibly incomprehensible aspect beyond time and space.

e a new framework for understanding consciousness that, whether true or false, will likely be as outdated in a thousand years as the Old Testament's patriarchal tribute to the goodness of keeping slaves is today. With fresh imagery, I will try to imagine myself a little further beyond the cliffs of the primordial abyss.

Historically, we have repeatedly underestimated the world we live in. We used to think that the Earth was flat. Then we discovered the solar system and later the galaxies. Today, we talk about the existence of parallel universes. The latest cosmology even divides these parallel universes into two types, namely Type 1 and Type 2.

Type 1 universes are similar to ours. However, they are moving away from our universe so quickly that we will never be able to receive information from them in the form of light. These universes will likely be subject to the same approximately 200 cosmological constants as our 'known' universe.

Type 2 universes/dimensions are different. They exist not separated by distance but parallel to our known universe. According to these theories, there would be an infinite number of such parallel universes. Unlike Type 1 universes, they would not be subject to the same cosmological constants in any way. We could easily imagine a universe or dimension without space-time.
In this context, I envision consciousness as a time-space 'copy' of the absolute space-timeless primordial abyss. Atma-consciousness is the 'translation' of the primordial abyss that occurs in the human brain when two parallel dimensions with vastly different cosmological constants collide.

From this perspective, any form of biological life is built around a collision point between an ultra-foreign dimension and our known dimension in time and space. The membrane between the two dimensions is the human consciousness soap bubble mirror.

This collision occurs through every eye that sees. For here, consciousness arises in countless fractal repetitions from the infinitely large to the infinitely small. The silent witness who perceives the world through the eye's portal is created when the unfathomable primordial abyss collides with our world of luminous space-time.

Consciousness arises in the contrast between the two dimensions that, so to speak, penetrate each other. Nietzsche's famous words, When you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you, make perfect sense here.

The notion of God is the personalized soap bubble consciousness's projective understanding of the absolutely incomprehensibly incomprehensible primordial mystery. All gods and religious concepts ever mentioned cannot be anything else than our, in time, space and culture made projection fields of this super glorious mystery.

This mystery is reaching beyond the rules of our universe set by the cosmological constants and will therefore never, I repeat never, be grasped. What can be grasped, albeit the most difficult of all to understand, is the birth of this primordial abyss into our universe.

In this birth, we create the primordial abyss in our own image simultaneously with the primordial abyss creating itself personified in us in precisely the same image.
In this biocentric retrocausality, the Son of Man is born as a simulation of the primordial abyss into the luminous space-time continuum. Nothing in our time-space dimension resembles the space-timeless primordial abyss more than human consciousness/soul.

In this light, consciousness is a simulation of the alien dimension knocking on the half-open door leading into time and space. Here, the primordial abyss gives birth to God, who gives birth to us. The following description is my impossible attempt to articulate such a collision with words. I don't fully understand them myself and will periodically return to this section and rewrite it.

At the moment of collision: An infinitely small asymmetry in the primordial abyss's nothingness. This asymmetry creates, like a speck of dust in God's omnipresent emptiness, reflecting eyes in time and space. These eyes are your eyes and mine.

Without error, no mirror. Humanity is a sacred mathematical 'error'.
Through this 'rift', the pure potential of emptiness is released in its first manifestation: the invisible mirror. The tear in the emptiness of time-and-space weaves the mirror of consciousness as a tabula rasa beyond the world of the mind.

This anomaly manifests the world in the same way a pen writes an entire book or a grain of salt causes a glass of saltwater to crystallize.

The mirror of emptiness holds the fullness of the world, just as the whiteness of paper holds letters and the cinema screen shows films of all kinds.

'First' there was nothing. Then there was the mirror: an invisible interface between existence and non-existence. In the mirror, something is reflected in something as a process in time and space. In the mirror, this 'nothing' now interacts with 'things'. The mirror is the reflection of things in nothingness.

The mirror of consciousness grows in time and space in pace with the world's self-referential complexity. The mirror of consciousness is here a living and fluid 'nothing'. Beyond time and space, the mirror of consciousness is an unchangeable zero.
Without the perfect imperfection of the speck of dust, no biological life would exist. For the reflective life grows at the interface between the worlds of dogs and cats.

In conclusion, consciousness dances as an enigmatic riddle, slipping through the grasp of our understanding and defying the constraints of language and science. This captivating force weaves us into the fabric of the cosmos, reflecting the divine spark within us. As we set sail on the thrilling odyssey of unraveling the secrets of consciousness, we must dare to embrace the paradoxes entwined with light, sound, and duality. By delving into the rich tapestry of metaphors and perspectives, we start to fathom the mesmerizing complexity and vibrancy of consciousness and its pivotal role in our existence. It is through this exhilarating quest that we might unveil the hidden treasures of our being and, perhaps, retrace our steps back to the boundless, primordial source from which we all emerged.

In the coming chapters we will dissect and discus more footprints made by the invisible thief.

IV.Super Consciousness - the Holy Grail