As promised, here is the second half of Dr. Ehsani’s talk. This part focused a little less on the scientific perspective, and a little more on the philosophical and spiritual side of our existence. Just like before, this overview of what was discussed will be presented in point form, and it might not make complete sense. Leave your comments or questions below if you require any clarification. Otherwise, enjoy ^_^
Scientific Approach to Consciousness
- We are not conscious in the past or future, only in the present
“The future does not exist until it is manifested in the present”
- It’s all about controlling the “future ego”, which obsesses with what could or might happen, to avoid missing the present moment
“There is nothing material about the material world”
- The material world in which we immerse ourselves is but a feature of the reality in which we exist.
- Familiar things happen to us on a daily basis, but for the most part we don’t bother to notice them.
- We crave complexity and difficulty in our lives, grasping at things that are out of our reach.
Spiritual Approach to Consciousness
- Becoming aware of our consciousness is the purpose of our creation
From “Faith” to “Certitude”
- Faith is close to doubt, but it is also the first step away from doubt
- Certitude is when you can see it! There is no doubt.
Things to think about…
- What is the most essential, most profound thing about you?
- Is it your wealth, power, education, or accomplishments?
- Is it your life, friends, family, your loved ones?
- If you lose everything, then what do you have left?
“I am still here”
- When you are on the verge of dying, you don’t have anything else
- That is the moment where you are free from everything, with nothing led to lose
- In the end, there is only you and what you really are
- Time stops, replace with timelessness
- You achieve true clarity — the truth
- There are some religions, cultures and beliefs that encourage the idea that we are required to suffer in order to achieve enlightenment.
- There is no rational need for us to need to suffer.
- It is our ego that affects our perception, making us seek difficulties and trials.
- “Free will” is the will to give up our suffering and to simply be aware of our own consciousness
“The world has a lot to teach us if we shut up and stop talking about ourselves”
There are many different attributes to our consciousness:
- Joy (not happy/unhappy) – the ability to be thankful for everything, good or bad, without being selective
- In touch with reality (can clearly see what is and is not possible) – giving the possible your all
- Anchored in the here and now
- Sense of timelessness and eternity
- Practical, efficient, effective (free from illusions)
- Creativity (selflessness)
– The ego is what prevents us from achieving these attributes… not that the ego is only a bad thing. It is what motivates us to achieve greater things, to strive towards higher goals.
- Humans have a lot more intelligence than is required for the basic things they need to do
- The ego is not only what makes us crave more intelligence, but it is also an emergent property of the mend, created and developed by that excess intelligence.
I never though of myself as having a big ego, but when I consider some of the things I have striven towards, and the intention with which I would do things, I suppose I cannot deny having overfed my own ego a little bit. It’s only natural, though. We all want to become better than who we are, to stand out of a crowd and have other recognize what we have done. It’s only a bad thing if that becomes all that we are fixated on. Working towards a better future is a noble endeavor, but if we only exist within the present, then perhaps we need to let our ego’s rest a little while we enjoy what is available for us now.
That’s all for today. I hope this was able to suffice for those of you who were unable to come out to the talk. I found it to be a rather illuminating experience, giving me a whole new outlook on life. Feel free to leave your own opinions in the comments, and as always, happy reading!