Realizing the Importance of Consciousness
Therefore, from 15 to my mid-twenties, I embarked on a very long journey to achieve this. I independently read about 2000 to 3000 books across 30 disciplines during this span. The goal was to formulate a paradigm that can explain the cosmos. I also wanted to predict the ultimate goal of humanity and the universe.
However, in my mid-twenties, I was struck by a series of crises in many areas. They involved mainly emotional, relational, and existential concerns. It involved losses, setbacks, ostracism, and meaninglessness. After the deaths of a few relatives, I became more concerned over my mortality. I also began to question humanity's long-term implications and my role in the broader scheme of the cosmos.
At this time, I realized that my materialist philosophy could no longer provide solace or answers to purpose or meaning in life. Regardless of how developed empirical science or equations may be, it can never explain away the white elephant in the room – consciousness.
Thus, from my mid-twenties to my very early thirties, I began to study many religions' ancient texts. It ranged from Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Zen, Egyptian mythology, Roman and Greek religions, New Age Spiritualism, Theosophy, Anthroposophy, Confucianism, Taoism, Sufism, Zoroastrianism, and Gnosticism. It also included the mystical worldviews of less-known groups such as Native American philosophy.
I also started a serious study of Near-Death Experiences and the Afterlife literature of many experts. This included Michael Newton, Brian Weiss, Kenneth Ring, Kelvin Williams, and Victor Zammit. During this time, I also started to engage in meditation and methods of altered consciousness.
In my late 20s, I experienced an Out-of-Body Experience. My soul floated out of my body, and I was looking down at it. During which, I gazed with three-dimensional vision at a resolution on the microscopic scale. As I progressed, I realized the importance of spirituality in our lives. It is vital, I felt, to know about its ultimate meaning and purpose.
When I was in the first year of graduate school (for my master’s degree in Existential Sociology), I experienced something similar to an enlightenment episode. It is pretentious to say that it is ‘enlightenment’ due to the misconceptions around it. Having such an experience does not make one superior or wiser. It merely broadens one’s worldview so that one may better cope with the adversities of life. During 2015, I had a series of such experiences that lasted for close to 4 weeks. During this, I had an elevated perspective and state of awareness.
I realized that the entire cosmos is unitary. All separation and time is an illusion. I also realized that it is important for people to love, accept, and help one another. Everything in the universe is imbued with life. I thus concluded that everything has innate value. During this span, I asked my higher consciousness on many questions. It then responded to me and unveiled many solutions to many personal, social, global, and universal issues.
Therefore, during this month, I penned out an unpublished book called Thus Spake Oneness. Its title is a pun on Nietzsche’s Thus Spake Zarathustra. ‘Spake’ is not a grammatical error! This book spans about 250,000 words.
As an example, one of its content involves the question of separation. Many conflicts in this world, such as the Arab-Israeli conflict, arise when people see divisions based on race, gender, or nationality. However, what if we could dispel the illusion of separation? If we are all one, then the idea of hurting another amounts to hurting oneself. There are many other similar solutions to such problems. I concluded that space, time, matter, and consciousness are not absolute. They are mutable and subjective. They are real, of course. However, many people believe that they are static, thus, adorning an essentialist worldview.
This, in turn, becomes their prison.