Souls.... (a human perpsective)

I think the popular conception of a "soul" is a little bit.... misconstrued. For I think that it only further enhances the idea of an ego-ist "individual" point of view.

What I feel that a "soul" truly is, is an aggregate of experience, over the span of a single life, a few lives, or a multitude of lives. But, in essence, what a "soul" is truly comes down to this, we are but one eye of infinity. And She has many (indeed, an infinite amount) of eyes.

I know that we, as humans, like to consider ourselves superior to other forms of life on this planet, and sometimes even superior in and amongst ourselves via discrimination based on race, religion and whatnot.

But I must ask one question here.... Does not ALL of existance spring from a common source?

If there is any answer to this other than a resounding "YES", then how can one explain differing beliefs, cultures, etc.... even differing forms of life.... upon the same place (this planet)? When it comes down to the final analysis, all religions basically reach the same conclusion.... "That is not dead, which can eternal lie..."

Sorry ;-) But the above HP Lovecraft quote exemplifies what mankind has always put forth about the "soul". It is eternal, it is unique, and it is ours....

But the "soul" has always been used as the ultimate argument in a life after Death, simply because we cannot perceive ourselves as "ceasing to be"

My take on this is that we do not "cease to be", rather we have always been. Whether we recognize this fact or not, we all spring from the same well.

Look at it this way. Souls are but a piece of infinity, "the Lady", if you will, that incarnate in order to view the infinite. And there is no better way in which to do this other than to spread the initial energy of all that is out into little bits. Some bits carry on longer than others. Some must re-group with other bits to incarnate as a wholly different bit altogether. Some bits are "new", in that they have never before been exposed to this avenue of the universe's self expression.

Basically, the universe is a self sustaining experiment, in which everything partakes. The Dance, both of illusion (seperateness) and reality (we are all each other).

My only real problem with the "religious" viewpoint (pick yer side and start swinging) is this.... There is an "afterlife" in which you are not too dissimilar to what you are now, except you sing "Holy, Holy, Holy" for all eternity or go unto the paradise of sherbet and houris...

This is where the concept of "home" comes into play. For I think, we all - as individuals - have our own concept of "home", that which we would like to merge with at our durations cessation.

For me, it is the sky, the night, the stars.... I simply wish to spread out and be joined with everything. Thus, in a sense, becoming nothing, and everything, but never again to know this seperation that I feel within this life from what I feel (and know) is truly out there.

The Afterlife

Okay, the afterlife..... this seems to be the singlemost sticking point when it comes to any discussion about souls.

How is it that many, if not most of us, agree to the fact (or feeling) that there is a part of us which "continues", although perhaps not as "us", yet we are so violently in disagreement as to what exactly this continues to?

There are so many versions of an "afterlife", a "heaven", a "hell", a whatever.... And the whole concept of an "afterlife" is just our own attempt to forestall the reality of the great change that Death is, the fact that our individual "consciousness", our "personality", may cease.

But if we attempt to consider this from an "intelligent" or "rational"(please notice the quotes, I'm not trying to start any wars here) point of view, let us examine it thusly.

Of what, primarily, is the universe composed of? And before you say matter let me say this - ENERGY, for even matter is energy. And of what are our souls composed of? ENERGY, not emotion, not intellect, but just energy, part of the distributed energy of the universe.

So, what happens when that energy is suddenly released from driving the physical shell which it inhabits? Does it go rushing off to the land of whatever god the shell may have believed in? Does it go to limbo? Does it gradually dissipate into the general surroundings of what it once inhabited?

See, here's where it gets really messy. NO ONE KNOWS. But, if one were to take the point of view that everything is energy, simply in different states... then perhaps we can begin to surmise.

Energy released from a single state can only transform, into another state. It cannot disappear, like a ghost on the wind, it must be accounted for. If we view the physical world as the lowest (most dense) of the available states of energy, then it must transform upwards, into a more.... hmmmm.... let's say "ethereal" state. (Bear with me folks, words and "definitions" get in the way here.)

So, we have anything incarnate in the physical realm as the lowest available state, with the next most rareified state being non-corporeal. It is to this state we are released to when the body expires. From here, in an infinite universe, it is *possible* to go anywhere. This is why "uncle AZ" is but a doorway. He does not direct us (I feel) to where we go next. It is always up to us, but this is tempered by our own life experience. Are we a "new" soul in need of more incarnate experience? Do we have a purpose as yet unfulfilled? Are we finished with being the eyes of the universe?

Somehow, even though I fervently wish to retire from incarnation and to go "home" to absolute dispersion, I do not think that it is this easy (to get out, so to speak, to break the wheel).

I do not believe in the concept of a "heaven" (for lack of better examples, at the moment). I do feel that it is *possible*, for a while, until one must come back, to earn a term of respite in an *illusion* (bad term, but I can think of no other), a temporary respite granted while one could replenish one's share of the universal energy, if one felt STRONGLY enough in that goal. Think of it as basking in the River a bit longer than most....

One thing I do "know" is this, that while "discarnate" we have no personality, that is abolished along with the body. We have access to our lives, whether one, a few, or many - in totality, in an instant. Duration is an illusion created by the false identity of seperatness which we, as physical, "rational" beings, require in order to maintain what we call "sanity".

Everything that IS, cycles. That is why things that are "new" to us are at times "familiar". That is why we can form unspoken bonds with those which we do not know, because it has already been done.

"There is nothing that's new, under the sun, except that which is forgotten." - Daevid Allen, Gong

Personality vs. "Souls".....

We, as humans, seem to be firmly in the grip of "personality".... It invades our very essence, our very core (at times), to the point that we can react in certain pre-defined ways according to our own individual pasts...

But what, exactly, is our "personality"?

Is it the way in which we perceive ourselves? Is it the way in which others perceive us? A mixture of both? or none of the above....

There is a tremendous amount of psycho-babble written upon this, replete with all kinds of terms - ego, id, anima, animus, pavlovian response, etc.... ad nauseum. It seems that the depths of mental masturbation never cease to stroke themselves....

When you strip away all of the psycho-babble, we are faced with one cold, stark truth. Personality is a lie. For we can all act "out of character", so to speak. And we all do, quite frequently. Personality therefore, is a construct of rationality, and an illusion. A comfortable one, though. For we, as humans, like the idea of comfort. Of not having to stretch the boundaries, not having to venture forth from the comfort of our own mentally constructed fortresses, that which we consider - "reality".

Our "personality" is the socially accepted buffer between how we interact with others and how we really think, & sometimes feel. And it gives us an easy way to classify others, according to how they may interact with us. So we arrive at the conclusion that "personality" is a rational, social construct, to enable ease of interaction between various individuals we may encounter. But one of many veils it seems we all must wear, whilst down here.

However, the soul is a flame. It is that which burns, eternally. The only thing we can rely upon, when rational thought has been stripped away. It is our core. That which is wordless.

It is irrational, because it can show us things that venture outside of the comfortable, mental realm. It is unending, because it can remind us, in strange ways, of that which our earthly experience has no first hand knowledge. It is unpredictable, which goes against rational thought, relying upon intuition, which is inexplicable. It is our truth, which often conflicts with the truth of others, which is as it should be. For all facets of the universe are different, similar only in their ultimate origin.

It is our inspiration, enabling us to share with each other, through various endeavours, that which can only be shared sans words. And in this way, perhaps, at some future time, it may be the only thing that enables us to wake up to the fact that we are all each other, that we share this planet, this universe, this very life we seem to all hold so dear. And maybe then, we shall be able to communicate intelligently with each other, sans words & sans emotions. And maybe all learn to live together.

And with this, I shall end my overlong discourse upon this subject (which I truly feel that I have beaten unto Death), and go on to other things..... Thus sparing all of you any further verbose meanderings through the hallways of my own mental masturbation...

copyright 2001 by Daniel Kemp