In contemplating my journey and my desire to go forward without big contradictions in my self-created path I keep coming back to various speculations I’ve seen about why we are here. No one can do more than speculate so I realize that when I choose one idea to believe it is just my belief and it’s possible that no one living has yet correctly surmised the truth.
As is so often the case there are lots of variations but there are two that keep dancing around in my head and both start from the same place and then go in different directions. They start from a theory that back when consciousness was just hanging around being All That Is, it became bored with just being Conscious and decided to create the physical realm.* One version (again, with a number of themes) is that it was created as a playground and (1) physical life is for enjoying and/or (2) physical life is for learning how to live as a spiritual being in a physical body and thus be able to enjoy all there is to experience in the physical. The other posits the physical realm more as a test—can consciousness come here in a body and manage to remember itself and return to pure consciousness, which is basically non-duality.
I can see the latter has shown up in a lot of religious traditions. All love of great food or sex or sunsets or blue skies or anything in the physical realm is a distraction or a temptation; something to forego or detach from. Loving physical things or having a preference for one smell or taste or sight, etc., over another is participating in duality. To me this is the side of the equation that prefers transcendence (see earlier post). We’re not really here to be human but to pass the test of moving beyond the physical and back to the realm of being consciousness, the realm of non-duality.
The other basic theme posits the physical realm as a sort of playground. Some say we’re only here to enjoy. Some say we’re here to learn how to be spirit in a body; to enjoy the fun of the physical and also keep track of being part of All That Is. I’ve always resonated with this last theory and it has been my main aim, to learn how to both enjoy this physical existence and to re-connect with my higher consciousness so that I can live an ordinary life as a spiritual being.
When I explore these theories and see where I land I can also see why my forays into Buddhism and Hinduism have confused my path because I think they fit more with the realm of transcending the physical to return to pure consciousness. And I get that from the Buddhist perspective my beliefs are just the refusal of ego to let go so Buddha nature can take hold. But since I have no aim to get out of the physical and I believe that ego has a function in the physical, I don’t care if it’s my ego that makes me, well, not a Buddhist.
Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against Buddhists or any other practitioners of non-duality—in fact, I am awestruck by the people I know who have successfully traveled that road. It’s not that I can’t see the amazing results of believing what they believe. I just also see people who’ve had amazing results from traveling the path I choose as well. That’s the great thing in this world of theories and choices; we each get to choose what we believe and follow the path that aligns with it. Every spiritual path is right for those who choose it.
It’s taken me a long piece of my journey to let go of enough angst and anxiety to be able to enjoy and now I’m ready for playing in the joy of being here.
*Both seem to also assume that something about the pull of earth or the heaviness of the physical caused humanity to forget its spiritual nature but I’ve not seen an explanation of that that satisfied me so I don’t want to get into that.