I know this for sure, anyone who loves doing something very passionately is at some level addicted to it. I have experienced it personally. I think every human being has enough potential in him/her to achieve ‘God/Conscious/Suchness/Sacredness’. How we choose to do it is very different and what we choose to call it also different. After thinking a lot about it, I have realized that reaching this Conscious state also has a tipping point.
Every one picks their own path as to how to reach it. But in my experience it has usually been following one standard path. When I say picking up your own path, it could be anything – any skill which you already have or in the process of acquiring. The most famous path in reaching Consciousness is ‘Meditation’, but if you think about it – meditation would enable you into getting into the feeling of Consciousness and this is the same state you might achieve doing any other activity very deeply. Let me explain with an example.
I am going to talk about the skill I am aware of – Programming. There are some people who program for the sake of programming and the very joy they derieve out of it. I am one of those. I love to write good programs and sometimes when I am programming, I reach a stage where my awareness peaks and I write some very beautiful code. Later when I look at it, I get really surprised that it’s me who typed those lines. So what exactly happens? I think when I hit the tipping point of Consciousness I suddenly transcend my tool, path – programming in this case and I reach that awareness level where I inherently know what to type without any memory, effort etc.
I am not just making this up. This is the single most feeling I always struggle for every time I program. This is the single most feeling I want to feel again and again and I am so addicted to feel this again that I look for new ways of learning new computer languages and try to reach that tipping point.
If you pause for a moment and ponder on it, I am sure everyone will remember an instance where they had this kind of feeling. A swimmer may reach a stage in swimming that he no longer follows any swimming technique but becomes one with the water. A painter would reach a point where he is no longer thinking about his painting, but has merged with the painting and what his hand might be doing is just detail. A teacher, reader, cyclist, nature lover, speaker, skier, hiker and the most popular one ‘Yogi’ – all these people are seeking this unique feeling again and again in their respective methods.
There are couple of things to note here though:
1. Not all of them may call it Consciousness and not many of them will be aware that they are seeking that feeling again and again. Some may call it ‘Flow’ state. Some may call it deep concentration.
2. Like I said, people follow their own respective path for this feeling. So, if you think about it – the very idea of path is to transcend the path. The very idea of programming is to end programming, the very idea of art is to end the art. I am not drunk to say those words, neither am I confused – the nature of Consciousness is hidden in paradoxes and it’s hard to explain verbally. So think about it a little deep and you will understand. Even Zen has an idea called ‘artless art’ – meaning where in Japan, art(calligraphy) is used by many Zen masters, not because it looks cool but they are actually mastering the art of tipping to the other side using art form. To reach the ‘artless art’.
3. We have always heard about reports on how we use only 10% of our minds. Did you ever wonder what happens if one uses 20%? 40%? 90%? 100%? I think I have a theory here. I think when you use 100% of your mind, that’s when you transcend mind. That’s when you tip from mind into Consciousness. Then it becomes clear to the person that the whole idea of having and using a mind is actually to end it. Considering that Consciousness is something we are all after in some form or the other.
4. Given these things, I think it’s not easy to reach that tipping point. Like in the diagram, once you start any activity (like painting, meditation, programming etc) you will have to go through ‘Low Point’. This is where the Nature tests you whether you actually love the activity you started (Check The Monk who sold his Ferrari for more on this) But once you cross this hurdle, as time passes and as you practice more and more you are bound to hit a tipping point. Once you taste it, you are never coming back. You will go through more effort again and again to get that feeling.
In my case so far I have been able experience something profound in programming and meditation.