5 Brainwave States You Should Know About – Consciousness liberty

Featured image designed by Freepik.

There are many vibrational brainwave states and each thought and emotion has its own signature wave state.

Changing our thoughts and emotions changes our brainwave vibrations, but did you know that you can change your state of being just by changing your brainwaves?

These are 5 categories of brainwave vibrational states that you should be aware of.

Gamma – Beta – Alpha – Theta – Delta

Image: http://www.medicalook.com/human_anatomy/organs/Brain_waves.html


Gamma brain waves oscillate at a frequency of 38 to 100 HZ.


The fastest, generally occurring recorded brainwave state, gamma brainwaves contributes to rapid information processing, peak concentration and learning. They are shown to be highly active when experiencing states of love, altruism and “higher virtues”. Gamma neurological firing was once said to be above the frequency of neuronal firing, but now is known to fire at a tiny amplitude, barely noticeable.

Gamma brainwaves serve to bind and harmonize the different parts of the brain. When your various senses observe an object through sight, smell, taste etc. the object is perceived by different parts of the brain. Gamma unifies the information and creates coherence of various inputs.

It’s also associated with feelings of compassion, higher levels of insight and information, psychic abilities, spiritual realizations and out of body experiences.

This new region of brain activity and states of consciousness associated
with more spiritual states of self-awareness is called Epsilon. Read more about it here.

Gamma state improves memory and perception and is considered the optimal state for functioning.



Beta brain waves oscillate at a frequency of 12 to 38 HZ.


Beta state is the dominant state of the alert, waking mind. When engaged in activities of the outside world, you are in beta state. This brainwave state consists of high frequency, low amplitude waves and uses a lot of energy to maintain. They are great for engaging in tasks, thinking fast, writing and engaging in conversations.

Most schools and workplaces encourage and operating in the beta state. Beta state is great for engaging in tasks, thinking fast, writing and having conversations.

Beta is also associated with excitement and rushes of adrenaline. You are in beta state when you are goal oriented and getting things done. Prolonging in this state is associated with stress, muscle tension, increased blood pressure, anxiety, insomnia and addiction.



Alpha brain waves oscillate at a frequency of 8 to 12 HZ.


Alpha waves and slower and higher in amplitude than beta waves. Alpha state is a relaxed and usually meditative state. Alpha brainwaves promote creativity, problem-solving and a flow state or “getting into the zone”. Alpha brainwaves allow for more balanced emotions.

Because alpha is a relaxed state, tension, anxiety and stress dissolve when you move from beta to alpha. This leads to mental coordination, alert calmness and the release of serotonin.

Alpha brainwave state bridges the conscious and subconscious mind. When you are in alpha state accessing your subconscious mind, you are highly suggestible. Your subconscious mind doesn’t understand logical and physical limitations like your conscious mind does. When you are in an excited or stressed state, you may block the production of alpha waves. Meditation or relaxation techniques can bring you back to alpha state.

When you are in an excited or stressed state, you may block the production of alpha waves. Meditation or relaxation techniques can bring you back to alpha state.

Alpha waves also promote the awareness of being in the present, or “in the now”. Switching into alpha states boosts the immune systems and helps with learning large amounts of information.



Theta brain waves oscillate at a frequency of 3 to 8 HZ.


Theta brainwaves are of greater amplitude to alpha and even slower. Usually, theta brainwaves occur when you are in a dreaming state of sleeping and in deep meditation. Theta brainwaves can occur when you are awake, although most adults do not get relaxed enough to maintain this state.

Theta is associated with intuition, healing and creativity. Theta is also great for language learning and development. Theta improves spiritual awareness and is associated with ESP and channeling.

Artists, musicians and children can more easily access theta by being in a very relaxed and/or creative state.

You can get into theta state while driving, when you “zone out” and don’t remember how you got from there to here. Repetitive tasks that disengage your mind such as brushing your teeth or showering creates theta waves allowing a flow of ideas to suddenly come up.

You can also go into theta when daydreaming, playing video games, jogging or meditating. In theta state, our senses are withdrawn from the external world and focused on our internal world.

Theta state is where we keep deep feeling, raw emotions, fears, traumas and nightmares.

When in theta state, you have difficulty focusing and prolonged theta state may create feelings of disengagement, boredom and depression.



Delta brain waves oscillate at a frequency of .5 to 3 HZ.


Delta brainwaves are of higher amplitude than beta. Slow, loud and deep — like a drum beat. They are created in deep, dreamless sleep and in the deepest meditations.

They promote feelings of empathy, extreme bliss and compassion.

They are associated with deep, restorative healing sleep. Delta brainwaves stimulate the pituitary gland releasing human growth hormone, HGH. They are also associated with aiding in the release of anti-aging hormones, melatonin and DHEA, while decreasing cortisol, the stress hormone that promotes aging.

Apart from infants and advanced meditators, not many people are able to be in a delta brainwave state and remain conscious. Usually, they will drift into unconscious sleep beforehand.

Delta brainwaves allow for connection beyond your subconscious mind and into your unconscious mind, where you have access to control what would normally be unconscious or automatic functions in your body, mind and emotions.

Delta waves are involved in involuntary bodily functions such as heartbeat and digestion and are where much restoration and healing in the body takes place.

Delta promotes excellent intuitive abilities, connection with your spiritual self, ESP and out of body experiences.









Reconciling Non Birth and Death with Consciousness

Hey folks,

So I joined two newbuddhist two years ago, and I haven’t been a constant user, but I have progressed quite far in my mindfulness journey. I have been reading TNH quite a lot and find his writing accessible and thought provoking.

A hangup that I have been struggling with recently, and this quite possibly could be due to my proclivity to overthink things, has been reconciling the miracle of consciousness with non birth and non death. I fully accept the idea of a physical non birth and non death, “beings are either manifested, when conditions are correct, or not manifested, when conditions are not correct.” That being said, I have found it more difficult to understand how our mental formations fit into the non-dichotomy of non birth and non death.

Consciousness is somewhat of an anomaly in the scientific community, as it is quite difficult to quantify. That being said, of course humans are conscious. Possibly the “most conscious” being on earth, if you can even say that, but that’s beside the point. We are a collection of our thoughts, experiences, and mental formations. These have come to fruition since our “physical birth.” When our being no longer has the conditions necessary to be a functioning human being, what happens to our consciousness? After death, as our physical form experiences an exponential increase in entropy, does this occur to our consciousness as well?

It seems nihilistic to suggest that when the synapses stop firing, that memories are lost forever, but it also (at least to me) seems like the most likely scientific explanation. Of course, there is the fact that this doesn’t really matter, I mean it wouldn’t really change my human experience if I knew one way or another about the “death of consciousness.”

Not an easy question I know, but if anyone has any advice or a Dharma talk to point me to that would be great. Please strike up a convo in the comments or message me, this has been a burning question for me and I feel like I am spinning wheels trying to understand non birth and non death. Peace.

Empathy Is a Clock That Ticks in the Consciousness of Another: The Science of How Our Social Interactions Shape Our Experience of Time – Brain Pickings

When I was growing up, my father — a kind man of quick intellect and encyclopedic knowledge about esoteric subjects — had, and still has, one habit that never failed to make other people uneasy and to infuriate my mother: In conversation, the interval of time that elapses between the other person’s sentiment or question and my father’s response greatly exceeds the average, a lapse swelling with Kierkegaard’s assertion that “the moment is not properly an atom of time but an atom of eternity.”

At first, one might suspect that my father is taking an incubatory pause to produce a considered response. But, soon, it becomes apparent that these disorienting durations have no correlation with the complexity of the question — even when asked something as simple as the time of day, he would often let miniature eternities pass and lasso the other person in anxiety as the contrast between the natural response time and my father’s gapes its discomfiting abyss of ambiguity.

It turns out that my father’s liberal pauses are so discomposing because our experience of time has a central social component — an internal clock inheres in our capacity for intersubjectivity, intuitively governing our social interactions and the interpersonal mirroring that undergirds the human capacity for empathy.

This social-synchronistic function of time is what New Yorker staff writer Alan Burdick examines in Why Time Flies: A Mostly Scientific Investigation (public library) — a layered, rigorously researched, lyrically narrated inquiry into the most befuddling dimension of existence.

Burdick begins at the beginning — the ur-question of how the universe originated from nothing and what this means for time, a question at the heart of the landmark 1922 debate between Einstein and Bergson that shaped our modern understanding of time. Burdick asks:

For argument’s sake, I’ll accept that perhaps the universe did not exist before the Big Bang — but it exploded in something, right? What was that? What was there before the beginning? Proposing such questions, the astrophysicist Stephen Hawking has said, is like standing at the South Pole and asking which way is south: “Earlier times simply would not be defined.”

Nearly a century after Borges’s exquisite refutation of time in language“Time is a river which sweeps me along, but I am the river; it is a tiger which destroys me, but I am the tiger; it is a fire which consumes me, but I am the fire.” — Burdick adds with an eye to the inherent limitations of our metaphors:

Perhaps Hawking is trying to be reassuring. What he seems to mean is that human language has a limit. We (or at least the rest of us) reach this boundary whenever we ponder the cosmic. We imagine by analogy and metaphor: that strange and vast thing is like this smaller, more familiar thing. The universe is a cathedral, a clockworks, an egg. But the parallels ultimately diverge; only an egg is an egg. Such analogies appeal precisely because they are tangible elements of the universe. As terms, they are self-contained — but they cannot contain the container that holds them. So it is with time. Whenever we talk about it, we do so in terms of something lesser. We find or lose time, like a set of keys; we save and spend it, like money. Time creeps, crawls, flies, flees, flows, and stands still; it is abundant or scarce; it weighs on us with palpable heft.

Yet whatever one calls it, we share a rough idea of what’s meant: a lasting sense of one’s self moving in a sea of selves, dependent yet alone; a sense, or perhaps a deep and common wish, that I somehow belongs to we, and that this we belongs to something even larger and less comprehensible; and the recurring thought, so easy to brush aside in the daily effort to cross the street safely and get through one’s to-do list, much less to confront the world’s true crises, that my time, our time, matters precisely because it ends.

From the temporal meditations of the ancient philosophers to the last hundred years of ingenious psychological experiments, Burdick goes on to explore such aspects of his subject — a nearly infinite subject, to be sure, which makes his endeavor all the more impressive — as why time dilates and contracts depending on whether we are having fun or facing danger, how fetuses are able to coordinate their circadian activity, and what we are actually measuring when we speak of keeping time. In a fascinating chapter detailing the complex ecosystem of time-making — the inventions, standardizations, and global teams of scientists responsible for measuring and synchronizing earthly time — Burdick reflects on the tremendous coordination of human efforts keeping the world’s clocks ticking:

Time is a social phenomenon. This property is not incidental to time; it is its essence. Time, equally in single cells as in their human conglomerates, is the engine of interaction. A single clock works only as long as it refers, sooner or later, obviously or not, to the other clocks around it. One can rage about it, and we do. But without a clock and the dais of time, we each rage in silence, alone.

But our technologies are always prosthetic extensions of our consciousness — time, it turns out, is an innately social phenomenon not only in how it is measured, but in how it is experienced. Burdick cites the research of French neuropsychologist Sylvie Droit-Volet, who studies the warping of our temporal perception. In one experiment, she presented people with images of human faces — some neutral, some happy, some angry, some frightened — each displayed on the screen for anywhere between half a second to a second and a half. The research subjects were then asked to evaluate how long the faces appeared for.

She found that across images displayed for the same duration, happy faces were perceived to last longer than neutral ones and shorter than angry or fearful ones. Burdick explains:

The key ingredient seems to be a physiological response called arousal, which isn’t what you might think. In experimental psychology, “arousal” refers to the degree to which the body is preparing itself to act in some manner. It’s measured through heart rate and the skin’s electrical conductivity; sometimes subjects are asked to rate their own arousal in comparison to images of faces or puppet figures. Arousal can be thought of as the physiological expression of one’s emotions or, perhaps, as a precursor of physical action; in practice there may be little difference. By standard measures, anger is the most arousing emotion, for viewer and angry person alike, followed by fear, then happiness, then sadness. Arousal is thought to accelerate the pacemaker, causing more ticks than usual to accumulate in a given interval, thereby making emotionally laden images seem to last longer than others of equal duration… Physiologists and psychologists think of arousal as a primed physical state — not moving but poised to move. When we see movement, even implied movement in a static image, the thinking goes, we enact that movement internally. In a sense, arousal is a measure of your ability to put yourself in another person’s shoes.

We perform this kind of emotional mimicry intuitively and incessantly over the course of our daily social interactions, in some degree donning the emotional and mental outfit of each person with whom we come into close contact. But we are also, apparently, absorbing each other’s sense of time, which is encoded in our psychoemotional states. In another study, Droit-Volet found that research subjects perceived images of elderly faces to last shorter than they actually did and misjudged the duration of young faces in the opposite direction — viewers were essentially embodying the typically slower movements of the elderly. Burdick explains:

A slower clock ticks less often in a given interval of time; fewer ticks accumulate, so the interval is judged to be briefer than it actually is. Perceiving or remembering an elderly person induces the viewer to reenact, or simulate, their bodily states, namely their slow movement.

A book, Rebecca Solnit memorably wrote, is “a heart that only beats in the chest of another.” In a very real sense, we are each a temporally open book and empathy a clock that only ticks in the consciousness of another. Burdick writes:

Our shared temporal distortions can be thought of as manifestations of empathy; after all, to embody another’s time is to place oneself in his or her skin. We imitate each other’s gestures and emotions — but we’re more likely to do so, studies find, with people with whom we identify or whose company we would like to share.

Life dictates that we possess some sort of internal mechanism to keep time and monitor brief durations — yet the one we carry around can be thrown off course by the least emotional breeze. What’s the point of owning such a fallible clock? … Maybe there’s another way to think about it, Droit-Volet suggests. It’s not that our clock doesn’t run well; on the contrary, it’s superb at adapting to the ever-changing social and emotional environment that we navigate every day. The time that I perceive in social settings isn’t solely mine, nor is there just one cast to it, which is part of what gives our social interactions their shading. “There is thus no unique, homogeneous time but instead multiple experiences of time,” Droit-Volet writes in one paper. “Our temporal distortions directly reflect the way our brain and body adapt to these multiple times.” She quotes the philosopher Henri Bergson: “On doit mettre de côte le temps unique, seuls comptent les temps multiples, ceux de l’expérience.” We must put aside the idea of a single time, all that counts are the multiple times that make up experience.

Our slightest social exchanges — our glances, our smiles and frowns — gain potency from our ability to synchronize them among ourselves, Droit-Volet notes. We bend time to make time with one another, and the many temporal distortions we experience are indicators of empathy; the better able I am to envisage myself in your body and your state of mind, and you in mine, the better we can each recognize a threat, an ally, a friend, or someone in need. But empathy is a fairly sophisticated trait, a mark of emotional adulthood; it takes learning and time. As children grow and develop empathy, they gain a better sense of how to navigate the social world. Put another way, it may be that a critical aspect of growing up is learning how to bend our time in step with others. We may be born alone, but childhood ends with a synchrony of clocks, as we lend ourselves fully to the contagion of time.

Perhaps Borges was right, after all, that time is the substance we are made of.

Whole Body Absorption – Consciousness Explorers Club

“We were both in the fugue-state that exhaustion through repetition brings on, a fugue-state I’ve decided that my whole time playing tennis was spent chasing … hypnotic, a mental state at once flat and lush, numbing and yet exquisitely felt.”   
– David Foster Wallace

Last week, three friends and I took an introduction to mountaineering course in the Canadian Rockies, north of Banff, on the Wapta Icefield. Every morning for five days, our little group put on our climbing harnesses, clipped into a long snaking rope, and began our glacier ascent. Some days the sky was cobalt blue, and we moved single-file along a narrow causeway next to sheer drop-offs, tiny figures in a vast landscape of stone and ice. Other days, the combination of snowfall and diffuse sunlight turned our world to white: no horizon line, no features, no direction. We used a compass to keep our four-person rope arrow moving in a straight line, ice axes ready to secure us in case one of us were to suddenly disappear into a crevasse.  

It was an exhilarating week — the friendship, the adventure, the self-sufficiency. The ridiculous perspective you get at 10,000 feet, where the scenery is so huge there’s simply no room to think about yourself or your problems. A good view sucks both right out of you; a good view for five continuous days resets the brain. No wonder people live in the mountains. All of us felt great: clear, settled, present.

At some point I realized that I was, in fact, at a meditation retreat — only, not a mindfulness one. This was more about the body: hour after hour engaged in a single activity, all of me engaged, attention riveted to my next step and the slithering rope in front of me. As DFW put it so beautifully, for hours on end I found myself in a mental state “at once flat and lush, numbing and yet exquisitely felt.”

Sometimes this is the practice we really need. There’s a dimension of human happiness that emerges not from panning back into more awareness, but from plunging into less. It’s a kind of trance, one that depends on our whole body’s capacity to become absorbed in experience. 

Often in life I’ve been too ADD to meditate in the usual seated way – too jumpy, too agitated, too busy-brained. When this happens, I’ve learned to turn to these sorts of active absorption practices. This is a path of concentration, but not the Buddhist kind, or not exactly. More the athlete’s or the artist’s kind. Its external form may look like going for a run, or drawing on a canvas, or even moving the vacuum around the house.

Most of us have experienced the fruit of this kind of commitment – the one-pointed focus, the mental settling – but we may not realize there are ways of increasing the activity’s potency and its powerful soothing effect. It has to do with how much of our total attention we bring to what we’re doing.

Here is a cruel human calculus: every time attention splits, the thing we’re paying attention to becomes exactly half as rewarding. For many of us, our attention spans are chronically divided, with one part paying attention to our physical surroundings, one part worrying about work, and one part self-conscious about how we look or what we’re saying. Our attention in these cases is like a frayed braid, an exploded frazzle of thin waving strands. Thin strands = a thin world. No single strand is satisfying, to say nothing of the cumulative effect of all that half-worrying.

By contrast, as we bring more strands together, the braid of attention gets thicker and stronger until it effectively merges with the activity itself. At this point, whatever we’re doing becomes inherently more rewarding and satisfying – in part because the “complaining strand” of attention is no longer present (or at least, it is not being actively reinforced). This is one way we get over ourselves, and it leads into the delicious mental state that DFW called “fugue,” athletes call “the Zone,” and Czech psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi famously calls “flow.”

When people tell me they’re “too ADD to meditate,” this is what I suggest: get absorbed in something else instead.

The key is to really go for it. How fully immersed can you become? Can you bring your entire body into play? The whole of your being? Don’t say “yeah, running is my meditation” and then ruminate on your problems while pumping your legs. This is about devotion. Devote your attention to your breath, to the feeling of energy and exertion, to the flow of movement in your arms and legs, or the scenery tracking by. Choose one direction, and then converge the strands.

Your body is waiting. Waiting for your commitment, waiting to absorb your mind back into itself, waiting to disappear into the action. 

This month at the CEC, with summertime finally blooming and buzzing all around us, we let our bodies take the lead. Peace to all my fellow explorers!

Chief Exploring Officer, The Consciousness Explorers Club

Ascension: A Flowering of the Consciousness – Steve Beckow

Artist ~ Keith Allen Kay @ Quantum Fractal Energy Mandala


Ascension: A Flowering of the Consciousness

What does Ascension mean? Many people will have differing viewpoints on the subject; I can only offer mine.

For me, Ascension means a deep and continuous relaxation of inner tension and the assumption of a permanent and complete experience of life as love. Not the love that we commonly experience, which is “weak meat soup” compared to higher-dimensional love. But rich, red, living love as flows continuously in the Fifth Dimension and higher.

And not a love that’s vanilla in Fourth Dimensionality, chocolate in Fifth, and strawberry in Sixth.

But the same love we experienced when our hearts opened; just deeper and deeper and deeper.

There is only one love.  Only our experience of it deepens.

Ascension is complete when we live in a full and permanent experience of higher-dimensional love and/or the divine qualities, all of which are forms of love. That implies a full and permanent heart opening.

As it happens, there’s an enlightenment event that closes off our Ascension cycle. It’s called Sahaja Samadhi. And it is in fact and reality a full and permanent heart opening. When we know our heart to be forever open, we can know that we’ve ascended.

Ascension as a process is both gradual and sudden. It’s gradual in that we’re integrating and assimilating each enlightenment event after it happens and preparing for the next one, over sometimes long stretches of time.

It’s sudden in that the process consists of several sudden, enlightenment events (1) spaced in between times of assimilation and preparation.

It’s necessary to divide up the enlightenment experience, and not to skip stages, so as not to burn out the human body.

In the past, people ascended after the death of their physical form. In this first mass, physical Ascension ever, people will ascend with their bodies. It’s a first in the universe, being eagerly watched by all.

When we say “ascend,” all we’re really talking about in the final analysis is a flowering of the consciousness.

We come alive in ways we didn’t even imagine we could. And our experience of love, bliss, joy, etc., leaves us wanting nothing.


(1) Radical breaks in continuity of experience, accompanied by an inspiring, empowering, and ennobling expansion in our consciousness, knowledge, and ability to love.

Gratitude & Appreciation to all artists & photographers ~ Credit given where this is known. Any queries, please contact me, Shekinah

Life after death has been ‘confirmed’ by experts who say consciousness continues

by Jade Small

We all know it’s coming, sooner or hopefully later! Death is just one of those things that happen to us all, eventually.

One thing many of us agree on, is life after death, but now scientists confirm that once your heart has stopped beating, your consciousness continues!

Over 2,000 people were studied by British scientists who say thought persists after death, and they have also found evidence that out-of-body experiences are in fact real in those who are declared dead and then revived.

Commonly believed by most scientists is that the brain was no longer active after the heart stopped pumping blood for 30 seconds and that consciousness awareness then also ceased to exist. The researchers at University of Southampton feels otherwise and have proven that awareness is still experienced for up to 3 minutes after declared dead.

Dr Sam Parnia, the head researcher of the study said: “Contrary to perception, death is not a specific moment but a potentially reversible process that occurs after any severe illness or accident causes the heart, lungs and brain to cease functioning.

“If attempts are made to reverse this process, it is referred to as ‘cardiac arrest’; however, if these attempts do not succeed it is called ‘death’.”

40% Of the 2,060 cardiac arrest survival patients who were interviewed for the study said that after being pronounced clinically dead, they were able to recall some form of awareness.

“This suggests more people may have mental activity initially but then lose their memories after recovery, either due to the effects of brain injury or sedative drugs on memory recall.” Dr Parnia explained.

One of the biggest and most significant finding was that of a 57 year old man who, after a cardiac arrest, was able to recall everything accurately that happening around him while he was temporarily dead!

Only 2% of patients said that their experience was similar to an “out-of-body experience”, this is when one feels almost totally aware of their surroundings following death. About 50% of patients in the study said that they felt fear, rather than awareness.

Dr Parnia said: “This is significant, since it has often been assumed that experiences in relation to death are likely hallucinations or illusions occurring either before the heart stops or after the heart has been successfully restarted, but not an experience corresponding with ‘real’ events when the heart isn’t beating.

“In this case, consciousness and awareness appeared to occur during a three-minute period when there was no heartbeat.

“This is paradoxical, since the brain typically ceases functioning within 20-30 seconds of the heart stopping and doesn’t resume again until the heart has been restarted.

“Furthermore, the detailed recollections of visual awareness in this case were consistent with verified events.”

Reference: News.com.au

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The Four Layers of Consciousness – Lion’s Roar

“When you say the rain is falling, it’s very funny, because if it weren’t falling, it wouldn’t be rain.” Photo by Lacie Slezak.

Abhidharma, Buddhism’s map of the mind, is sometimes treated as a topic of merely intellectual interest. In fact, says Thich Nhat Hanh, identifying the different elements of consciousness, and understanding how they interact, is essential to our practice of meditation.

The Vietnamese Zen Master Thuong Chieu said, “When we understand how our mind works, our practice becomes easy.” To understand our minds, we need to understand our consciousness.

The Buddha taught that consciousness is always continuing, like a stream of water. Consciousness has four layers. The four layers of consciousness are mind consciousness, sense consciousness, store consciousness, and manas.

Mind consciousness is the first kind of consciousness. It uses up most of our energy. Mind consciousness is our “working” consciousness that makes judgments and plans; it is the part of our consciousness that worries and analyzes. When we speak of mind consciousness, we’re also speaking of body consciousness, because mind consciousness isn’t possible without the brain. Body and mind are simply two aspects of the same thing. Body without consciousness is not a real, live body. And consciousness can’t manifest itself without a body.

It’s possible for us to train ourselves to remove the false distinction between brain and consciousness. We shouldn’t say that consciousness is born from the brain, because the opposite is true: the brain is born from consciousness. The brain is only 2 percent of the body’s weight, but it consumes 20 percent of the body’s energy. So using mind consciousness is very expensive. Thinking, worrying, and planning take a lot of energy.

Mindfulness keeps us in the present moment and allows our mind consciousness to relax and let go of the energy of worrying about the past or predicting the future.

We can economize the energy by training our mind consciousness in the habit of mindfulness. Mindfulness keeps us in the present moment and allows our mind consciousness to relax and let go of the energy of worrying about the past or predicting the future.

The second level of consciousness is sense consciousness, the consciousness that comes from our five senses: sight, hearing, taste, touch, and smell. We sometimes call these senses “gates,” or “doors,” because all objects of perception enter consciousness through our sensory contact with them. Sense consciousness always involves three elements: first, the sense organ (eyes, ears, nose, tongue, or body); second, the sense object itself (the object we’re smelling or the sound we’re hearing); and finally, our experience of what we are seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, or touching.

The third layer of consciousness, store consciousness, is the deepest. There are many names for this kind of consciousness. Mahayana tradition calls this store consciousness, or alaya, in Sanskrit. The Theravada tradition uses the Pali word bhavanga to describe this consciousness. Bhavanga means constantly flowing, like a river. Store consciousness is also sometimes called root consciousness (mulavijñana in Sanskrit) or sarvabijaka, which means “the totality of the seeds.” In Vietnamese, we call store consciousness tang. Tang means to keep and preserve.

These different names hint at the three aspects of store consciousness. The first meaning is of a place, a “store,” where all kinds of seeds and information are kept. The second meaning is suggested by the Vietnamese name, because store consciousness doesn’t just take in all the information, it holds it and preserves it. The third meaning is suggested by bhavanga, the sense of processing and transforming.

Store consciousness is like a museum. A museum can only be called a museum when there are things in it. When there is nothing in it, you can call it a building, but not a museum. The conservator is the one who is responsible for the museum. Her function is to keep the various objects preserved and not allow them to be stolen. But there must be things to be stored, things to be kept. Store consciousness refers to the storing and also to what is stored—that is, all the information from the past, from our ancestors, and all the information received from the other consciousnesses. In Buddhist tradition, this information is stored as bija, seeds.

Suppose this morning you hear a certain chant for the first time. Your ear and the music come together and provoke the manifestation of the mental formation called touch, which causes store consciousness to vibrate. That information, a new seed, falls into the store continuum. Store consciousness has the capacity to receive the seed and store it in its heart. Store consciousness preserves all the information it receives. But the function of store consciousness isn’t just to receive and store these seeds; its job is also to process this information.

The work of processing on this level is not expensive. Store consciousness doesn’t spend as much energy as, for example, mind consciousness. Store consciousness can process this information without a lot of work on your part. So if you want to save your energy, don’t think too much, don’t plan too much, and don’t worry too much. Allow your store consciousness to do most of the processing.

During the night if your room becomes cold but you continue to sleep, your body can sense the cold without the intervention of mind consciousness. Store consciousness may give the order to your arm to pull up the blanket without your even being aware of it. Store consciousness operates in the absence of mind consciousness. It can do a lot of things. It can do a lot of planning; it can make a lot of decisions without your knowing about it.

When we go into a department store and look for a hat or a shirt, we have the impression, while looking at the items displayed, that we have free will and that, finances permitting, we are free to choose whatever we want. If the vendor asks us what we like, we can point to or verbalize the object of our desire. And we likely have the impression that we are free people at this moment, using our mind consciousness to select things that we like. But that is an illusion. Everything has been decided already in store consciousness. At that moment we are caught; we are not free people. Our sense of beauty, our sense of liking or disliking, has been decided very certainly and very discreetly on the level of store consciousness.

It’s an illusion that we are free. The degree of freedom that our mind consciousness has is actually very small. Store consciousness dictates many of the things we do, because store consciousness continuously receives, embraces, maintains, processes, and makes many decisions without the participation of mind consciousness. But if we know the practice, we can influence our store consciousness; we can help influence how our store consciousness stores and processes information so as to make better decisions. We can influence it.

You may not see something as beautiful, but if many people think that it’s beautiful, then slowly you may come to accept it as beautiful also, because the individual consciousness is made up of collective consciousness.

Just like mind consciousness and sense consciousness, store consciousness consumes. When you are around a group of people, although you want to be yourself, you are consuming their ways, and you are consuming their store consciousness. Our consciousness is fed with other consciousnesses. The way we make decisions, our likes and dislikes, depend on the collective way of seeing things. You may not see something as beautiful, but if many people think that it’s beautiful, then slowly you may come to accept it as beautiful also, because the individual consciousness is made up of collective consciousness.

The value of the dollar is made up of the collective thinking of people, not just of objective economic elements. People’s fears, desires, and expectations make the dollar go up and go down. We are influenced by the collective ways of seeing and thinking. That’s why selecting the people you are around is very important. It’s very important to surround yourself with people who have loving-kindness, understanding, and compassion, because day and night we are influenced by the collective consciousness.

Store consciousness offers us enlightenment and transformation. This possibility is contained in its third meaning, its always-flowing nature. Store consciousness is like a garden where we can plant the seeds of flowers, fruits, and vegetables, and then flowers, fruits, and vegetables will grow. Mind consciousness is only a gardener. A gardener can help the land and take care of the land, but the gardener has to believe in the land, believe that it can offer us fruits, flowers, and vegetables. As practitioners, we can’t rely on our mind consciousness alone; we have to rely on our store consciousness as well. Decisions are being made down there.

Suppose you type something on your computer and this information is stored on the hard drive. That hard drive is like store consciousness. Although the information doesn’t appear on the screen, it is still there. You only need to click and it will manifest. The bija, the seeds in store consciousness, are like the data you store on your computer. If you want to, you can click and help it appear on the screen of mind consciousness. Mind consciousness is like a screen and store consciousness is like the hard drive, because it can store a lot in it. Store consciousness has the capacity of storing, maintaining, and preserving information so that it can’t be erased.

Unlike information on a hard drive, however, all the seeds are of an organic nature and they can be modified. The seed of hatred, for example, can be weakened and its energy can be transformed into the energy of compassion. The seed of love can be watered and strengthened. The nature of the information that’s being kept and processed by the store consciousness is always flowing and always changing. Love can be transformed into hate, and hate can be transformed back into love.

Store consciousness is also a victim. It’s an object of attachment; it’s not free. In store consciousness there are elements of ignorance—delusion, anger, fear—and these elements form a force of energy that clings, that wants to possess. This is the fourth level of consciousness, called manas, which I like to translate as “cogitation.” Manas consciousness has at its root the belief in a separate self, the belief in a person. This consciousness, the feeling and instinct called “I am,” is very deeply seated in store consciousness. It’s not a view taken up by mind consciousness. Deeply seated in the depths of store consciousness is this idea that there is a self that is separate from non-self elements. The function of manas is to cling to store consciousness as a separate self.

Another way of thinking of manas is as adana consciousness. Adana means “appropriation.” Imagine that a vine puts forth a shoot, and then the shoot turns back and embraces and encircles the trunk of the tree. This deep-seated delusion—the belief that there is a self—is there in store consciousness as the result of ignorance and fear, and it gives rise to an energy that turns around and embraces store consciousness and makes it the only object of its love.

Manas is always operating. It never lets go of store consciousness. It’s always embracing, always holding or sticking to store consciousness. It believes store consciousness to be the object of its love. That’s why store consciousness isn’t free. There’s an illusion that store consciousness is “me,” is my beloved, so I can’t let it go. Day and night there’s a secret, deep cogitation that this is me, this is mine, and I have to do everything I can to grasp, to protect, to make it mine. Manas is born and rooted in store consciousness. It arises from store consciousness and it turns around and embraces store consciousness as its object: “You are my beloved, you are me.” The function of manas is to appropriate store consciousness as its own.

Now we have the names of the four layers of consciousness, and we can see how they interact. Store consciousness is a process—always flowing, always present, never interrupted. But mind consciousness may be interrupted. For example, when we sleep without dreaming, mind consciousness is not operating. When we’re in a coma, mind consciousness stops working completely. And there are deep concentrations when mind consciousness completely stops operating—there’s no thinking, no planning, nothing—yet store consciousness continues to operate.

Some neuroscientists use the term “background consciousness” to describe store consciousness. And the level of mind consciousness is what they call, simply, consciousness. Whether you’re awake or you’re asleep, whether you’re dreaming or not dreaming, the work of processing and storing information is continuously done by store consciousness, whether you want it to or not.

There are times when sense consciousness operates in collaboration with store consciousness without going through the mind. It’s funny, but it happens very, very often. When you drive your car, you are able to avoid many accidents, even if your mind consciousness is thinking of other things. You may not even be thinking of driving at all. And yet, most of the time at least, you don’t get into an accident. This is because the impressions and images provided by eye consciousness are received by store consciousness, and decisions are made without ever going through mind consciousness. When someone suddenly holds something close to your eyes—for instance, if someone is about to hit you, or when something is about to fall on you—you react quickly. That quick reaction, that decision, is not made by mind consciousness. If you have to make a quick maneuver, it’s not your mind consciousness that does it. We don’t think, “Oh, there is an accident, therefore I have to quickly swerve to the right.” That instinct of self-defense comes from store consciousness.

In the cold room at night, even though you’re not dreaming, and mind consciousness isn’t functioning, the feeling of cold still penetrates into the body at the level of sense consciousness, which makes a vibration on the level of store consciousness, and your body moves the blanket up to cover you. Whether we’re driving, manipulating a machine, or performing other tasks, many of us allow our sense consciousness to collaborate with store consciousness, which enables us to do many things without the intervention of mind consciousness. When we bring our mind consciousness into this work, then suddenly we may become aware of the mental formations that are arising.

The word “formation” (samskara in Sanskrit) means something that manifests when many conditions come together. When we look at a flower, we can recognize many of the elements that have come together to make the flower manifest in that form. We know that without the rain there can be no water and the flower cannot manifest. And we see that the sunshine is also there. The earth, the compost, the gardener, time, space, and many elements came together to help this flower manifest. The flower doesn’t have a separate existence; it’s a formation. The sun, the moon, the mountain, and the river are all formations. Using the word “formation” reminds us that there is no separate core of existence in them. There is only a coming together of many, many conditions for something to manifest.

When Descartes said, “I think, therefore I am,” his point was that if I think, there must be an “I” for thinking to be possible.

As Buddhist practitioners, we can train ourselves to look at everything as a formation. We know that all formations are changing all the time. Impermanence is one of the marks of reality, because everything changes.

Formations that exist in consciousness are called mental formations. When there’s contact between a sense organ (eyes, ears, mouth, nose, body) and an object, sense consciousness arises. And at the moment your eyes first gaze on an object, or you first feel the wind on your skin, the first mental formation of contact manifests. Contact causes a vibration on the level of store consciousness.

If the impression is weak, then the vibration stops and the current of store consciousness recovers its tranquility; you continue to sleep or you continue with your activities, because that impression created by touch has not been strong enough to draw the attention of mind consciousnesses. It’s like when a flying insect lands on the surface of the water and causes the water to ripple a little bit. After the insect flies off, the surface of the water becomes completely calm again. So although the mental formation manifests, although the current of the life continuum vibrates, there’s no awareness born in mind consciousness because the impression is too weak.

Sometimes in Buddhist psychology, one speaks of forty-nine or fifty mental formations. In my tradition, we speak of fifty-one. Of the fifty-one mental formations, contact is the first, followed by attention, feeling, perception, and volition. These five mental formations can take place very quickly, and their intensity, their depth, varies in each level of consciousness. When we speak of attention, for instance, we can see attention in the context of store consciousness, and we can see attention on the level of mind consciousness, and the intensity or the depth of attention is quite different on the two levels.

The fifty-one mental formations are also called mental concomitants; that is, they are the very content of consciousness, the way the drops of water are the very content of the river. For example, anger is a mental formation. Mind consciousness can operate in such a way that anger can manifest in mind consciousness. In that moment, mind consciousness is filled with anger, and we may feel our mind consciousness is full of nothing but anger. But in fact, mind consciousness is not just anger, because later on compassion arises, and at that time, mind consciousness becomes compassion. Mind consciousness is, at various times, all fifty-one mental formations, be they positive, negative, or neutral.

Without mental formations, there can’t be consciousness. It’s as if we’re discussing a formation of birds. The formation holds the birds together, and they fly beautifully in the sky. You don’t need someone to hold the birds and keep them flying in one formation. You don’t need a self to create the formation. The birds just do it. In a beehive, you don’t need someone who gives the order for this bee to go left and that bee to go right; they just communicate among one another and are a beehive. Among all the bees, every bee may have a different responsibility, but no bee claims to be the boss of all the bees, not even the queen. The queen is not the boss. Her function is simply to give birth to the eggs. If you have a good community, a good sangha, it’s like this beehive in which all the parts make up the whole, with no leader, no boss.

When we say it’s raining, we mean that raining is taking place. You don’t need someone up above to perform the raining. It’s not that there is the rain, and there is the one who causes the rain to fall. In fact, when you say the rain is falling, it’s very funny, because if it weren’t falling, it wouldn’t be rain. In our way of speaking, we’re used to having a subject and a verb. That’s why we need the word “it” when we say, “it rains.” “It” is the subject, the one who makes the rain possible. But, looking deeply, we don’t need a “rainer,” we just need the rain. Raining and the rain are the same. The formation of birds and the birds are the same—there’s no “self,” no boss involved.

There’s a mental formation called vitarka, “thinking.” When we use the verb “to think” in English, we need a subject of the verb: I think, you think, he thinks. But, really, you don’t need a subject for a thought to be produced. Thinking without thinker—it’s absolutely possible. To think is to think about something. To perceive is to perceive something. The perceiver and the object that is perceived are one.

When Descartes said, “I think, therefore I am,” his point was that if I think, there must be an “I” for thinking to be possible. When he made the declaration “I think,” he believed that he could demonstrate that the “I” exists. We have the strong habit of believing in a self. But, observing very deeply, we can see that a thought does not need a thinker to be possible. There is no thinker behind the thinking—there is just the thinking; that’s enough.

Now, if Mr. Descartes were here, we might ask him, “Monsieur Descartes, you say, ‘You think, therefore you are.’ But what are you? You are your thinking. Thinking—that’s enough. Thinking manifests without the need of a self behind it.”

Thinking without a thinker. Feeling without a feeler. What is our anger without our “self”? This is the object of our meditation. All the fifty-one mental formations take place and manifest without a self behind them that’s arranging for this to appear, and then for that to appear. Our mind consciousness is in the habit of basing itself on the idea of self, on manas. But we can meditate to be more aware of our store consciousness, where we keep the seeds of all those mental formations that are not currently manifesting in our mind.

When we meditate, we practice looking deeply in order to bring light and clarity into our way of seeing things. When the vision of no-self is obtained, our delusion is removed. This is what we call transformation. In the Buddhist tradition, transformation is possible with deep understanding. The moment the vision of no-self is there, manas, the elusive notion of “I am,” disintegrates, and we find ourselves enjoying, in this very moment, freedom and happiness.

© 2006 by Parallax Press. For more on this subject, see Understanding Our Mind: Fifty Verses on the Nature of Consciousness, by Thich Nhat Hanh. Published by Parallax Press.

Princeton Study Observes Group Consciousness Has Physical Effects On World During Large-Scale Events – The Global Elite

For the first time in scientific history researchers have discovered that group consciousness (i.e. collective consciousness) elicits physical changes in the physical world around us. Researchers made the discovery in a groundbreaking study from Princeton University’s PEAR Laboratory (Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research). “The power of thought is not just ideological. It manifests physically. Cohesion between individuals ramps up this power,” write the study’s authors. The research was spearheaded by Roger Nelson, who coordinated research at PEAR for two decades, and who is now the director of the Global Consciousness Project (GCP), a collaboration between researchers world-wide to test the power of human consciousness.

GCP writes: “In field applications, the research shows that in situations which produce a coherent group consciousness the data may depart from expectation even without specific intentions. The GCP/EGG project’s measures are a direct extension of the laboratory and field applications of the REG technology. In field studies with REGs we have found consistent deviations from expected randomicity in data taken in situations where groups become integrated or unified by something of common interest. During deeply engaging meetings, concerts, rituals, etc., the data tend to exhibit slightly greater order than random data should, and we are able to predict this deviation with small but significant success.”

“The best way to describe the anomalous effects we see in the data is as a correlation that comes to exist between the devices spread around the world — just during major events, defined in terms of the widespread attention and emotion the produce,” adds GCP “That is, there are departures from expectation when human consciousness is powerfully engaged. The devices are designed to be independent, and they are separated by hundreds or thousands of kilometers, and yet we see the correlations — that is anomalous, and it is linked with consciousness. The implication is that we are not isolated from each other as seems to be the case, but linked in a subtle, unconscious and inaccessible way. Learning more about that, and tapping into the potential of our interconnection is the next phase of human development. We are at the beginning, and ready to move forward.”

The discovery provides major proof to the existence of the Unified Field (also known as Uniform Field Theory), a theory of quantum physics. Dr. John Hagelin is Professor of Physics and Director of the Doctoral Program in Physics at Maharishi International University in Iowa, and in one of his published papers he examines the connection between group consciousness and the Unified Field: “Following a general introduction to Unified Quantum Field theories, we consider [the proposal that] the Unified Field of modern theoretical physics and the field of ‘pure consciousness’ are identical. We show that the proposed identity between consciousness and the unified field is consistent with all known physical principles, but requires an expanded physical framework for the understanding of consciousness. Such a framework may indeed be required to account for experimentally observed field effects of consciousness and phenomenological aspects of higher states of consciousness.”

To learn more about Princeton’s PEAR Lab research you can watch the video below. David Lynch also describes the Unified Field theory beautifully in a terrific Q&A which you can watch below. And Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor also touches on the very same subject in perhaps the most profound TED Talk of all, entitled “Stroke Of Insight,” her personal account of her brush with the Unified Field when the left hemisphere of her brain shut down. You can also watch Dr. John Hagelin in his own words as he summarizes years of scientific research bridging consciousness and the Unified Field in the lecture below.

Psyleron – Princeton Mind-Matter Interaction Research

Jill Bolte Taylor’s stroke of insight

The Charlie Rose Brain Series 2: Consciousness

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The Universe in You: A Higher Consciousness – The Conscious Continuum

One of the most profound experiences in life that one can have is to fully realize the infinite interconnectedness of everything ~

This experience goes much deeper than the words on this page. As a synthesis of the left and the right brain, the mind, body, spirit, and heart, come together effortlessly for the benefit of all of life. To experience the wholeness of existence through mind and spirit is to see the world as a single gigantic organism with its own collective mind. Everything connects to everything else, boundaries break down, and many ecological alignments become perceivable. From here, the universe is not a merely a collection of inanimate parts but rather, is alive, intelligent, and a product of your own creation.

A higher consciousness is not to be judged as better than any other state of being, it simply is an operation of human awareness on a different wavelength. It is more closely aligned with love, peace, joy, and gratitude, and can see a bigger picture.

While effortlessly flowing with nature in grace and simplicity, a higher consciousness values spiritual purification, awakening, transcendence, liberation, unconditional love, compassion for all, emotional mastery, presence, mindfulness, gratitude, unity, deeper and deeper levels on interconnectedness, selfless living, and humility.

When awakening to a higher state of awareness, the metaphysical background of reality that lies beyond the mind, begins to shine. One begins to fully recognize “Maya” or the illusion that has been painted onto our reality. From here, one can see past the illusion and is able to transcend all concepts, philosophies, biases or beliefs. Embodying this truth results in a radiance of love, and a manifestation of the self for the benefit of existential reality, life, and the entire planet.

One also begins to clearly see that all of what mankind is really searching for is a higher consciousness. At the core of our being, we are all searching for love, which is achieved unconditionally with a progressive evolution of our awareness. As a result of this understanding, one becomes interested in cooperative action for elevating the consciousness of mankind while helping to awaken humanity and assist in remembering the magnificence of our existence. This is a process of integration that leads to wholeness and synthesis that lies beyond analysis, and gives rise to an importance of being, as opposed to knowing, doing and having.

We may then come to realize, in truth, that we are not just a coincidental being that happened to appear billions of years after the big bang. But we are in fact, the heart of it all.

Concepts in this article were interpreted from my personal research on Spiral Dynamics. Credit to: Clara Graves, Don Beck, Christopher Cowan for this amazing work.

Involution’s Essence. The Uneaten Core. (Only Consciousness) – INVOLUTION: Science and God: Reality Redefined

What is the book about? (A Vision to Challenge Darwinian Randomness and Competition) Memory Creating and Integrating towards Unification.

This epic charts the history of scientific thought to offer a complementary and challenging vision of evolution. Involution— the in’forming’ by memory of the structure of matter— and by co-creating the material forms, integrating a ‘unified intelligence’, akin to a bio-computer pervading throughout. Diversity (and convergence) were consensual, not merely or even dominantly competitive. This book proposes that the history of scientific thought was the incremental recovery of memory (through the inspirations of genius) and uses the evidence of science’s chronology itself to tilt at the insufficiency of the scientific viewpoint.

How is the tale told? ( An Odyssey through Individuals- called Genius.)

By retaking the story of human understanding, from the unified theories of pre-Socratic Greece, through the Dark Ages, the Renaissance and Enlightenment to Modernism it tracks the continuous thread of what science has ignored, its own inspired and maverick origins. It moves from the unified field origins of the universe through the divergence of forms, to the single Man, who re-spirals and retraces this journey in reverse. The early fields of pre-Socratic integrated understanding (Parmenides, Empedocles, Pythagoras Heraclitus) splits after Plato and Aristotle and then diverges through the scientific disciplines until, from Einstein, Schrodinger and now Laszlo, Man returns to the unified field theories of QM and relativity, the last remaining division.

That division is the product of the process of science, to divorce its intellect from the unified bio-computer (consciousness) in which intellect is, in fact, embedded: and to which it is occasionally susceptible. Poets mystics (and genius) have provided ample evidence.

The reliance on inspiration, subjective, single, unrepeatable, and individual defies everything science claims to be about. Yet it drew its sustenance and direction from such moments and such individuals. This is a book about unique contemplative people, not just an idea.

It weaves its spiral like a single DNA molecule through memory, the record of evolving consciousness. The two companions who narrate and argue are Reason (who holds up the catalogue of scientists and their ideas, left brain and uni-directional ) and  Soul (who signals the multi-dimensional inspirations of art and music). Together they trace the episodes of genius and embrace in those moments when memory informed the journey of memory’s recovery.The Odyssey of Mankind is back towards Eden- holistic spirituality.

Why is it important to read it? (Why science is on the cusp of change)

It is, the book maintains, the recovery of memory that has inspired the model science has built of evolution, the collective intellect or what Teilhard de Chardin called the Noosphere.  In the process, science has ignored the severing of man’s mind, epitomized by the two hemispheres of his brain and permitted the dominance of the left, when it was the right that truly guided it. Mind and matter are perceived as distinct through this artificial separation of intellect from consciousness. All is consciousness, the field where DNA shapes and is shaped by electromagnetism in its varying forms, and the deeper Akashic Field, the ‘ether’ record of space-time, in which nothing is lost.

Science still perceives that field as external and searches for deficient matter, and the origins of consciousness; proposing un-testable string theories, antimatter and anti-gravity, when the deficiencies themselves are possibly created by science’s collective blindness. Creation’s reality is consensual, and the error ( and limitations) lie in consensual perception. The world we have, we have created ( subject to laws and the consent of the whole). Having exhausted the external materialism of intellect where the cupboard is now almost bare, science stands on the cusp of change, and must dive into consciousness that connects. Involution explains how this occurred and why all will now change. Consciousness is all there is: to some it appears solid, to others illusory and to some non existent. Relativity extends throughout perception: degrees of spiritual perception. The mirror reflects back what looks into it.

This is a bold ( many would say foolhardy) hypothesis but only because new to science, the perennial philosophy is the oldest story of all. Man’s return to Eden through the Exile caused by knowledge was always foretold. Rather than the ‘dictator’ of evolutionary change by error and slow increments, DNA is the resonant collaborator conserving it all yet changing constantly, communicating incessantly. Brain is not the emitter, but the receiver of this field of information. Sometimes.

Why Symphonic Prose? ( A musical language for a harmonious truth.)

Perhaps the use of ancient rhythmical language is itself an indication that recovery has reached its origins and may now be the language an integrated vision requires. Science has involuted back to metaphysics, consciousness to poetry. If we look at evolution through the lens of science and the logic of prose, encumbered by necessary facts, we are limited to only the external half that intellect permits. Science is the spectrum of understanding chosen because it is well known and provides a sturdy ladder, but only to afford a greater height  for the vision of a science behind science (The Cathedral behind the Scaffolding). By looking at memory through the multi-layered evocation of symphonic prose we find, as readers, what we already know. It is gratifying to keep company with poets and find the familiar.  This odyssey is to the depth of ourselves.

The Author might show you the scars