Sunday, July 15, 2018

Realization Through Concentration

Rereading Meher Baba’s handwritten words; “So by the process of concentration the Goal is gained.” – Meher Baba, In God’s Hand, page 77, I was struck by his use of the term, the process of concentration, and noticed that he consistently avoided using that term in conjunction with any object of concentration.

Ordinarily, when we use the term concentration it is always linked to some task, or mantra, or idea, and this tends to place more emphasis on the object than on the process—on the concentration.

But without reference to an object, concentration can be considered in a different light—like, for example, the various states of the tomato!—there can be the tomato, tomato juice, tomato soup, tomato sauce, or tomato paste.

The more the mind is concentrated, the more it advances in the planes. And when concentration reaches its highest state, the mind is entirely stopped; i.e. all its limits have been broken, i.e. it has now become unlimited, and the Mind stopped, i.e. unlimited is realizing God every moment.” – Ibid. page 76

     Meher Baba’s statement from The Wayfarers further illumines this point;

            Mind stopped, is God.
Mind working, is man.
Mind slowed down, is mast (God-intoxicated)
Mind working fast, is mad.” The Wayfarers, page 19

The dream state of creation has but one purpose only, to gain the consciousness by which the soul realizes itself. Mind is essential to the process, but once consciousness is gained the mind itself become an obstacle.  As Rumi said; 
The mind is a great and a wondrous thing that can lead you to the door of the King,
But then like shoes on entering a holy place, must be removed and left at the door.”

The tomato is there in the beginning, it represents God in the deep sleep state. Through the process of evolution, during which the soul, through mind, associates with and experiences all the pre-human forms of creation, it achieves the state of tomato juice—the state of fully conscious man.

But in man, consciousness remains linked to the mind and the impressions of the mind. The seeds and the skin of the tomato need to be removed and the juice remains to be concentrated. Through the process of reincarnation, mind associates with and experiences numerous lifetimes and the vast panorama of human possibilities to eventually achieve the state of tomato sauce.

Tomato sauce is more pure and condensed than tomato juice but still runny—the mind is runny—not stable—and remains linked to consciousness. Further ‘processing’ is necessary to become tomato paste. The state of tomato paste is achieved through the process of involution whereby the mind associates with and experiences the higher planes of consciousness in the subtle and mental spheres. At the very end of involution—just prior to realization—the mind is all but stopped—condensed—but still remains linked to consciousness and Reality continues to identify and associates with it Illusion and not its Self.

How to end this association of the fully conscious self with the mind? Gurdjieff said, “It is like trying to jump over one’s own knees!


“You are like a stream that flows through all of time seeking union with the sea.

Nearing journey’s end, the stream flows into a vast desert and is trapped in the sands.

Weakening more and more, it struggles on, but finds its way to the sea blocked by a great mountain.

Hopeless and helpless, its life ebbing away into the sands, the stream cries out, ‘Oh help me Lord!’ and is answered by the voice of the wind.

‘I am the wind; you must give yourself to me. In my arms I will carry you over the mountain as cloud and as rain you will merge with the sea.’

‘But I will cease to be a stream. I will die!’

‘You will not die,’ whispered the wind. ‘Only your dream of yourself as stream will end. Besides, where is your choice? For stream you can no longer be. Give yourself up to me, or be lost forever in the sands.’

And so, totally helpless and without hope, exhausted beyond belief, the stream gave itself up into the arms of the wind and was carried as cloud beyond the mountain’s peaks.

The cloud drifted over the sea where seeing itself reflected in the water below, began to weep.

‘I await you. Come,’ welcomed the sea.

And the cloud released itself as tears of joy and fell as rain into the sea.

‘We are not we, but one,’ spoke the golden sea and the stream, being no more, heard the voice and recognized it as its own.” – From, The Voice of the Stream, a poem by Michael Kovitz

So by the process of concentration the Goal is gained.” – Meher Baba, In God’s Hand, page 77

But it should be noted that Meher Baba also stated that this way is very difficult.

But the concentration must reach a stage as to make the mind stop. This is a very difficult process, and it takes a very, very, long time.  Because the mind if it succeeds in concentration a little, to it is manifested the first plane, which so interests it, that it gets concentrated on that only.”—Ibid.

Here, creation is taken to be the entire gross universe with all its suns and planets and solar systems, etc. and life-forms from animal to man, and also the planes of consciousness that make up the subtle and mental worlds of involution.

Consciousness begins to evolves in the gross world by association with, and experience of, all of creation’s known and unknown pre-human forms—from  stone to vegetable, to animal, etc. and reaches its limit—its fullness—in the final gross form—the human form.

Consciousness in the human form continues its journeyless journey through the process of reincarnation to prepare itself for involution whereby, while still in the human form, it associates with and experiences the subtle and the mental planes of consciousness, 1st – 6th planes, to finally complete its journeyless journey in the plane-less, world-less, state Meher Baba calls the seventh plane, the plane of Eternal God Realization—Self Realization.  

Creation can be thought of as being like a colander with many holes of different sizes. The state of God before mind—before creation—before the colander—was likened to a tomato, a tomato without consciousness. Upon entering creation—the colander of many sized holes—the tomato begin to experience itself as tomato juice. Tomato juice is very runny and passes through the smallest holes of the colander and begins to experience creation in the gross world.

Over time, through the process of evolution, the tomato juice thickens and becomes more like tomato soup. Tomato soup, being less runny, can no longer pass through the smallest holes of the colander and so begins to pass through the next larger holes and to experience the state of reincarnation in the human form.

Becoming more and more concentrated, like tomato sauce, consciousness begins to experience the process of involution and experiences the subtle and then the mental worlds and the first six planes of consciousness. At the end of this final stage of its journey-less journey, there are no holes in the colander large enough for tomato, now in the state of tomato paste, to pass through, and so one final step yet remains to be taken in which consciousness passes beyond the colander—beyond the universe—beyond the mind, and this is where, this is when, the help of the Avatar and His Perfect Masters is essential. Why?

In a discourse recorded in the book, Beams From Meher Baba, Meher Baba speaks about the relationship between the already Realized souls and the yet to be Realized souls; “With regard to those souls who attain realization subsequently, two requirements stand, viz. inner poise and adequate adjustment with everything in the universe.” Beams From Meher Baba, page 29

This adequate adjustment includes Perfect Masters and the Avatar. Regarding those souls yet to be realized Baba states; “One of the important factors in his spiritual environment is the existence of a human God-Realized soul.” – Ibid. page 29

And what constitutes this adequate adjustment?  Meher Baba states; “In this case, the only adequate adjustment possible is the unreserved acceptance of the bountiful help which comes from the first Master. Refusal to accept this help is maladjustment to a tremendous factor in the universe; and this prevents God-Realization.” – Ibid. page 29

And so, with the help of the Avatar or a Perfect Master the mind and its creation the universe is transcended while retaining consciousness and the tomato realizes itself knowing that its identification with itself as tomato juice, tomato soup, tomato sauce, and tomato paste, was the necessary necessity in its journey-less journey to gain consciousness to realize itself as what it always was, is and will be.

He returns to the door from which he first came out, although in his journey he went from door to door.” – Maulana Shabistari
                                                                                                                © copyright Michael Kovitz 2018




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