Wednesday, November 27, 2013

This Much I Know: I Cannot Know

 Everything has its time and place.
Ego is not in control of what’s happening.
LIFE is in control of what’s happening.
To insist that something can empower us,
all at once, to dive into ourselves
and see anything and everything we need to
see to awaken, is working at odds
with human experience.

Everything happens in its time. We’re not in control. This isn’t something we want to hear, though. It isn’t something our mind wants. Mostly we want to hear things that empower our sense of control. And we radically push away anything that does not empower or sense of control.

When you start to accept what you see as true – not what I say, but your experience – that’s when everything starts to change.

All I know is that I am. Everything else is in a state of flux and uncertainty. I don’t know what the outcome of that flux and uncertainty is. But I know that I don’t know. And this knowledge has not disempowered me. Quite the contrary, Life has a part to play through me, and I play that part. I am in union with the part of Life that changes all the time, no longer arguing with it, Life gets to play it’s part through my agreement. And it seems that when we’re in the deepest state of agreement, the part Life plays though us is very satisfying.

~adapted from Adyashanti, The End of Your World
Art: Helena Nelson-Reed
The phrase "I know that I know nothing" or "I know one thing: that I know nothing" (Ancient Greek: ἓν οἶδα ὅτι οὐδὲν οἶδα hèn oîda ὃti oudèn oîda; Latin: scio me nihil scire or scio me nescire), sometimes called the Socratic paradox, is a well-known saying derived from Plato's account of the Greek philosopher Socrates. This is the nondual perception of a contemplative/mystic. She senses (knows what is) and she intuits (cannot know all that is). this is, in Christian theological lingo - kataphatic perception (I know what is;concept embodied) and apophatic perception (I know what is not;concept cannot be fully embodied).
Everything changes when we accept that the ultimate nature of, and outcome for, reality is Mystery and always Mystery. This is something theology and science have in common. Science can only determine what is objectifiable (created form). Theology imagines subjectively and attempts to impose it on the objective (story, philosophy). Neither can define What Is, for if it could, it would no longer be What Is. And BOTH are accurate depictions of What Is, within their own context, for they describe the same thing, What Is. The God of Israel's "I Am" is the most expansive thing we can put in words about "What Is." What we do not know, we cannot define with words. Or stated differently, we can only partially define with words. What we cannot define must be assumed larger than what we can, for it lies beyond and includes what we can define.
Hardwired for Truth as a highest priority, I have learned that in the relative world of physical form there are infinite truths, depending on context. In the absolute world of mysterious eternity there is but one truth, and it is mystery and will always remain mystery. The paradox is, mystery (what I do not know) contains all that I do know in physical form - all the words and concepts that I can imagine, everything that I say "I know" and more, all relative truths, and it is in mystery that we dwell as both object (what is known) and observer (the mysterious one who knows....and knows nothing).

And I chose to have Wisdom rather than the light, because the splendor of her never yields to sleep. — Wisdom 7:10
Rest in the Mystery! Therein is the peace that passeth understanding. _/\_Peggy