consciousness:Ramana Maharshi taught that you could achieve the stage of butterfly if you simply “Ask yourself again and again, ‘Who am I?’”1 “The inquiry ‘Who am I?’ will destroy all other thoughts, and like the stick used for  stirring the burning pyre, it will itself in the end get destroyed. Then, there will arise Self- realization.”2 That’s much more easily said than done; and like any other teaching in the back of the movie theater, if it worked, there would be a lot of butterflies populating the Earth by now. So you’re going to take a little different approach that does work. For approximately the  next  two  years  in  your  cocoon,  you’re  going  to  focus  on  answering  the  question, “Who Am I not?”, along with the question, “What is true?” At least, that’s what worked for me and a few other scouts and got us where we are today. Basically,  before you  can find the  true answer to “Who Am I?”, you  have to strip away  all  the  false answers  you’ve  collected  during  your  lifetime,  especially  those  you picked up belonging to various groups in the back of the movie theater. Remember that in order for a caterpillar to transform into a butterfly,  it has to first realize it’s not a caterpillar any more. “It is during the time of pupation that the adult structures of the insect are formed  while the larval structures are broken down.”3 So we’re going to take a closer look at some of the beliefs commonly held around the topic of “Who I Am” and whether they are true or not; and one of the most common that has become very popular among New Age groups is: “You create your own reality.” But is that true? First of all, since the New Age apparently never found out that “reality” is actually a holographic image, and not “real” at all, the saying is not true right off the bat. But that’s just  a  minor  error,  and  I’m  very  willing  to  amend  their  slogan  slightly  to  conform  to quantum physics and say, “You create your own holographic universe,” so we can focus on the important issues. “You create your own holographic universe.” Is that true? If so, exactly who is the “you” who is creating your own holographic universe? Let’s find out by picking up where we left off in our study of quantum physics in the last part. We said… “What we have always thought of as our life, our reality, is not real – according to  quantum  physics  –  but  actually  a  holographic  3D  movie  we  have  been  immersed  in,  whose wave frequencies have been downloaded from The Field to our brain, where they  are translated into particles located in space and time and projected “out there” for us  to perceive through our senses.”

…and the question we asked was, “Who or what is creating the holographic movies I’m experiencing as my reality?

You’ll remember  that a hologram is a two-step process, and in the second step the reference beam is directed toward the holographic plate (or film) containing the object in order to get the object to pop out into “reality.” What  we didn’t discuss yet  is that a single piece  of holographic  film is capable  of storing many,  many objects, and in fact holography may soon replace other laser-based storage techniques because of its capacity to hold so much information. (“The advantage of this type  of data storage is that the  volume of the recording media is used instead of just the surface.”4) Which  object  or  objects  pop  out  when  you  direct  a  reference  beam  at  the  film depends  on  the  angle  of  the  reference  beam.  In  other  words,  you  can  choose  which holographic images to create by using different angles for the reference beam to select the exact wave patterns you want that are stored in the holographic film. Now let’s apply that to our holographic universe…. Some sort of reference beam – we don’t know what yet  – is directed at The Field, which  is  like  a  gigantic  piece  of  holographic  film  that  already  contains  all  the  wave frequencies required for an infinite number of holograms; and out pops “reality.” So  now  we  can  ask  our  question  even  more  specifically:  Who  or  what  is  the reference  beam that  chooses  certain  wave  frequencies  from  The  Field  to  create  our holographic reality? The best answer anyone has come up with so far is consciousness. Consciousness is what chooses the precise wave frequencies in The Field and downloads them to a human brain, which then converts them into space/time particles and out pops our “reality.” Of course, this process is not two-dimensional or linear as portrayed in this picture. A more realistic depiction might be three-dimensional concentric circles, with “reality” in the middle, The Field around it, and consciousness around The Field. You could think of it like a peach, where the peach pit is “reality,” The Field is the meat of the peach that you eat, and consciousness is the skin. However, we’re stuck with two-dimensional  linear  pictures  right  now,  at  least  until  this  book  can  be  made holographically. * * Consciousness is  what  chooses  the  precise  wave  frequencies  in  The  Field  and  downloads them  to a human brain,  which then  converts them into  space/time  particles  and out pops our “reality.” This is where quantum physicists split into two main groups. One group – the “pure” scientists – cannot accept this answer, although it is the most logical and the simplest, and therefore  satisfies  Occam’s  Razor  and  the  principle  of  parsimony.  That’s  because consciousness cannot  be  measured  or  dealt  with  in  the  normal  scientific  way. Consciousness simply does not lend itself well to mathematical  equations or statistical research. But  there  are  a  significant  number  of  quantum  physicists  who  understand  that consciousness is not only the best answer, but also the most workable. One of those is Dr. Amit Goswami, in my estimation one of the great thinkers of our time. Dr. Goswami is Professor Emeritus in theoretical physics at the University of Oregon, Senior Scholar in Residence  at  the  Institute  of  Noetic  Sciences,  and  author  of  eight  books  on  Quantum Physics,  including  The  Self-Aware  Universe and  Science  and  Spirituality:  A  Quantum  Integration. Dr. Goswami says: “Quantum Physics enables us to see directly  that we can make sense of the world  only  if  we  base  the  world  on  consciousness.  The  world  is  made  of  consciousness;  the  world  is  consciousness….  Quantum  Physics  makes  this  as  clear  as  daylight….  Consciousness  must  be  involved,…  and  so  for  the  first  time,  science  encounters  ‘free  will.’ Consciousness is free because there is no mathematical description of the subject  in our science; only objects can be described mathematically, and only to the extent that  they are possibilities. The question still remains paramount: Who is the ‘chooser?’ And  when we see that… we see that there is freedom of choice, and out of that freedom of  choice comes our actual experience.”5 Dr.  Jeffrey  Satinover,  Teaching  Fellow  in  Physics  at  Yale  University,  has  these thoughts… “If you put it that there is an intangible world that effects the tangible world of our  experience, and if you then say, ‘That’s what quantum mechanics says,’ – and granted,  that’s a fair way of trying to put into English something which is very, very difficult to  grasp – but it then leads quite naturally to the conclusion that quantum mechanics says  that there is a spiritual world that makes this choice, that there is another world that is  intangible that effects and influences the physical world. That intangibility, however, is  itself the bedrock of physical reality. It may be intangible, but it is – well, we can’t really  say what it is or why it’s there – but it is in fact the most fundamental feature of matter.”6 Fred Alan Wolf, theoretical physicist, puts it this way… “Quantum Physics says that  consciousness is playing a role in the universe. It says  that there is a secret underground that seems to be effecting the reality we live in, and  that this reality we live is not at all what it appears to be.”7 And  Dr.  Andrew  Newberg,  Director  for  the  Center  for  Spirituality  and  the Neurosciences at the University of Pennsylvania, asks… “Whether  or  not  we’re  just  living  in  a  big  ‘Holodeck’  is  a  question  we  don’t  necessarily  have  a  good  answer  for…. It  is  conceivable  that  all  of  this really  is just  a  great illusion…. So what is the relationship between consciousness and material reality –  whether or not the material world can actually be derived from a consciousness reality,  or whether consciousness itself could even be the fundamental stuff of the universe, so to  speak, instead of the ‘cold, dark matter’ or other aspects of matter that physicists have  been  looking  for?…  Maybe  it  has  something  more  to  do  with  consciousness.  In  that  regard,  then,  we  really  can  think  about  the  universe  as  being  more  a  state  of  consciousness… much more so than the material reality that we normally look at.”8 So a number of highly respected and thoughtful quantum physicists have concluded that consciousness is what chooses the exact wave frequencies from The Field it wants to use to create our holographic experiences. However, just like The Field, no one can prove  consciousness exists. But also like The Field, when we assume “consciousness must be involved,” as Dr. Goswami says, we can then build  a very successful model  of how our world works and use that model  in very practical and successful every-day applications. So the statement “You create your own holographic universe” is  not true, since the “you” you think of as you, the one on the “reality” side of The Field, is not creating that reality.  It  might  be  closer  to  the  truth  to  say,  “Your  consciousness creates  your  own holographic universe.” But… what exactly is consciousness? If  you  would  like  a  good  laugh,  click  here  to  watch  a  short  video  from  What  the  Bleep!?  –  Down  the  Rabbit  Hole,  where  some  of  the  brightest  people  in  the  field  of quantum physics try to give an answer! Now, after you’ve stopped laughing, please appreciate the honesty and humility with which all those great minds struggled with the question, because defining consciousness is not easy at all. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines  consciousness as “the quality  or state of  being aware, especially of something within oneself.”9 In philosophy, “at its most basic level, consciousness may be said to be the process  of a thinker focusing the thought on some aspect of existence.”10 “In  human  beings,  consciousness is  understood  to  include  ‘meta-awareness,’  an  awareness that one is aware.”11 In many  spiritual  teachings,  consciousness is synonymous  with  the human  soul or spirit, the immortal part of a human being; and “higher consciousness – also called super  consciousness  (Yoga),  objective  consciousness  (Gurdjieff),  Buddhic  consciousness  (Theosophy),  God-consciousness  (Sufism  and  Hinduism),  Christ  consciousness  (New  Thought), and cosmic consciousness – are expressions used to denote the consciousness  of a human being who has reached a higher level of evolutionary development.”12 But, “we may be forced to admit that consciousness, like  infinity  and the particle- wave  concepts  in  quantum  mechanics,  is  a  property  that  cannot  be  made  intuitively  straightforward.  Consciousness  –  like  gravity,  mass,  and  charge  –  may  be  one  of  the  irreducible properties of the universe for which no further account is possible.”13 If you visit and and search for consciousness, you will find essay upon essay – dozens of them – from respected researchers trying  to explain what consciousness is, all with a little different take on the word. For me, the last quote is perhaps the most significant and worth repeating… “Consciousness – like  gravity,  mass,  and charge  – may  be  one of  the  irreducible  properties of the universe for which no further account is possible.” So I think  it’s clear  no one really knows exactly what  consciousness is or how to properly define it. The truth is we will never know; we only know it must exist.  We are, in fact, incapable of knowing, and always will be incapable of knowing, simply because we  are  on  the  other  side  of  The  Field  from  consciousness;  and  our  brains  –  at  least according to Pribram – are designed as holographic receivers and translators, and have no capacity or ability to access or process any information on the other side of The Field. We do know that consciousness is not the body, the brain, the mind, the intellect, or anything else in the holographic universe. It is not a thing; it is the creator of things. Am  I  saying  that  we  –  the  “I”  who  is  writing  this  book  and  the  “you”  who  are reading  it  – have  no  consciousness? No,  I’m saying  the  word  consciousness has been applied to mean a great many things in our holographic universe, and it’s very confusing to then use it to describe what exists on the other side of The Field. Yes, we – “you” and “I” – have a kind of consciousness, which is self-consciousness. We are aware of our “selves,” and we are aware of being aware; as the dictionary said, “the quality or state of being aware, especially of something within oneself.” That’s fine, but that’s not the  consciousness we’re talking about that chooses wave frequencies from The Field. Rene  Descartes  said:  “I  think,  therefore  I  am.”  Descartes  lived  inside  the  movie theater like everyone else, and as I mentioned before, in quantum physics we are finding the  opposite  of  what  we  have  always  believed  is  actually  closer  to  the  truth:  “I  am,  therefore I think.” The  consciousness we’re now talking about is the “I am;”  you  and I and our self- consciousness are the “I think.” * * For  a  long  time  I  hesitated  to  do  this,  probably  in  reaction  to  the  two  complete dictionaries of new words and meanings L. Ron Hubbard created for Scientology. I don’t even enjoy reading poetry;  I like to read plain and simple English with clear and well- accepted words and meanings. But  because  of  all  this  confusion  about  the  word  consciousness,  and  because  this concept  is  so  essential  to  understand  on  your  path  to  becoming  a  butterfly,  I  feel  it’s necessary  to  come  up  with  a  new  label  to  properly  describe  the  consciousness on  the other side of The Field – this “irreducible property of the universe” – and differentiate it from us on this side of The Field. I decided quite early I could not use terms like “higher self,” “higher power,” “higher consciousness,” or “expanded self,” since they, too, are so over-used and misunderstood; and frankly, they all take a Human Adult in exactly the opposite direction of where you want to go if you want to become a butterfly. We’ll see why shortly. Likewise, I didn’t want to use “soul” or “spirit” or anything else with any religious connotation. This isn’t about theology or ascended masters or higher levels of spirituality. I  finally  decided  on  the  term,  “Infinite  I,”  which  admittedly  makes  some assumptions, but in the end and for our purposes turns out to be quite useful. The  assumptions  are  that  whatever  consciousness  exists  on  the  other  side  of  The Field has qualities and attributes that are infinite, such as: ~ infinite joy ~ infinite abundance ~ infinite wisdom ~ infinite power ~ infinite and unconditional love ~ and an infinite desire to play and express itself creatively14 This may or may not turn out to be the “Truth”; perhaps we’ll find out when we die – or not. But for now it’s as close to the truth as we’re going to get, and, like the concept of The  Field,  provides  a  very  workable  model  to  continue  our  transformation  into  a butterfly. It also serves the purpose of making a clear distinction between the Infinite I on one side of The Field, and “you” and “me” on the other side, walking around in holographic bodies  on a holographic  Earth.  Therefore,  the  Infinite  I is not  the “I” who writes  these words, and it’s not the “you”  who reads them. (I’m going to give another name to that “you” and “I” in the next chapter.) I  also  want  to  emphasize  that  when  I  say “Infinite  I,” I am  talking  about  a  single, individual consciousness – not consciousness in general (as the word is sometimes used), or some “collective consciousness,” or “cosmic consciousness,” or “God.” Each of us has an Infinite I. (Perhaps the closest anyone in the movie theater has come to this concept, as far as I can tell, is Jane Roberts in her novels, The Oversoul Seven Trilogy,15 based on the “Seth material.”) So from now on I will refer to the Infinite I as the one who chooses the precise wave frequencies  in  The  Field  and  downloads  them  to  a  human  brain,  which  then  converts them into space/time particles and out pops our “reality.” Before we go on, I want to be very clear about this  Infinite I, because I don’t want any confusion with other concepts you may have developed inside the movie theater. The  Infinite  I is  not  your  “higher  self”  or  “expanded  self.”  There  are  two  things wrong with the term “higher self;” one is the word “higher,” and the other is the word “self.” First, “higher”  has no relevance  here.  It’s a judgment  word, a  comparison,  and  we will soon see that judgment is the glue that keeps the illusions together inside the movie theater. The word “self” implies that what we think of as our “self” has a higher version. But what we think of as our “self” is not true – any of it. In fact, where we’re headed with all this is toward “no-self.” So the last thing we want to think of in terms of the Infinite I is that it is some expanded version of us. It’s not. Nor is the  Infinite I some “advanced” or “spiritualized” or “ascended” or “purified” or  “better”  version  of  you.  It  is  not  some  “enlightened”  or  “evolved”  or  “avatar”  or “holy” version of you, either. It is not something you will ever grow into being. You will never “become” your  Infinite I, no matter what you do, how “good” you are, how much you meditate or eat only organic food, or pray, or perform certain ceremonies or rituals. It is not “God,” or “All That Is,” or Allah, or Jehovah, or Yahweh, or “The Source” either. It  is  also  not  your consciousness,  God-consciousness,  Christ  consciousness,  universal  consciousness,  or cosmic  consciousness.  Those  are  all  movie-theater  versions  of  the  truth,  and  therefore skewed.  It  is consciousness,  yes  –  your consciousness;  but  not  the  consciousness  you experience as a human being, which is self-consciousness.  super  consciousness,  objective  consciousness,  Buddhic Although  you  are  in  constant  communication  with  your  Infinite  I (whether  you realize it or not), you and it exist in entirely different worlds – on different sides of The  Field. The best analogy I can think of is an astronaut on the moon, representing “you,” and  Mission  Control  in  Houston,  representing  your  Infinite  I,  with  all  that  space  (The Field) in between. I like this analogy because not only did your Infinite I send you to the moon in the first place, but it is also your best friend and partner in this adventure. But then what is the Infinite I, you ask? Good question. I don’t know. I know from  direct  experience  of testing  and challenging  the model that my  Infinite I exists, and it created me and your  Infinite I created you. I can tell you what it’s not, but I cannot tell you what it is yet; and as I said, I don’t think it’s possible for anyone to tell you what it is, in truth, as long as we are on this side of The Field. The only  thing  I  can  say  in  all  my  dealings  and  contacts  with  my  own  Infinite  I,  it  is something I would be proud to take home to meet the parents. * * So here is the “Consciousness Model” in a nutshell…. Your Infinite I chooses an experience for you in the form of wave frequencies from an infinite number of possibilities in The Field and downloads them to your brain. Your brain  receives  those  wave  frequencies  and  translates  them  into  physical  “reality,”  and sends them “out there” for your senses to perceive. You assign power to the holographic universe you perceive to make it “real” and to the persons, places, and things you see. But  this  suggests  that  there  is  nothing  you  can  see,  hear,  taste,  feel,  smell,  or experience in any way that your  Infinite I has not chosen for you to experience and then sent to your brain to process into “reality.” Every moment of every experience you have now – or have ever had and will ever have – has been carefully chosen and created for you by your Infinite I, exactly the way it is and exactly the way your Infinite I wants it to be, down to the smallest detail. Remember… THERE IS NO “OUT THERE” OUT THERE!

FOOTNOTES 1. Robert Adams’ blog about Sri Ramana Maharshi – Back to reading 2. Mahadevan, T.M.P., in the Introduction to Who Am I?: The Teachings of  Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi – Back to reading 3. Wikipedia – Pupa – Back to reading 4. Wikipedia – Holography – Back to reading 5. Goswami, Amit. What the Bleep!? – Down the Rabbit Hole – Back to reading 6. Wolf, Fred Alan. What the Bleep!? – Down the Rabbit Hole – Back to reading 7. Newberg, Andrew. What the Bleep!? – Down the Rabbit Hole – Back to reading 8. Satinover, Jeffrey. What the Bleep!? – Down the Rabbit Hole – Back to reading 9. Merriam-Webster Dictionary – consciousness – Back to reading 10. – consciousness – Back to reading 11. – consciousness – Back to reading 12. – higher consciousness – Back to reading 13. Ramachandran, V.S. with Blakemore, Colin, – consciousness – Back to reading 14. Adapted from the various writings and seminars of Robert Scheinfeld – Back to reading 15. Roberts, Jane. The Oversoul Seven Trilogy – Back to reading

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