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The Science of Meditation (part 4)


Edited by Marco Ferrini

The Collective Unconscious represents the World of Archetypes, of Symbols where an American, an Indios, a citizen of Cape of Good Hope, an Eskimo or a Chinese have same essential systems of reference: actually, this is the universal nature of symbols.

The concept of memory or remembrance, in Sanskrit smritaya, becomes crucial as what can be remembered on conscious or unconscious level.

Memories are all the more conditioning when deeply situated in the unconscious mind; if a conscious memory or thought can be temporarily and voluntarily put aside by the person who is trying to concentrate and focus on something else, an unconscious memory, just because of its nature, cannot be directly and consciously dealt and it will affect and act upon the person.

Such experiences, registered in the deep unconscious (karmashaya), are known as samskara, where sam means “together” and kara derives from the Sanskrit root kr and means “to do”; these experiences are neither positive nor negative per se, but their importance is due to the powerful influence on the individual, who, generally speaking, wrongly thinks to be the sole author of all his actions. Similar experiences attract themselves and produce deep grooves in the unconscious psyche, authentic paths along which the individual retrace same steps. These psychic grooves represent the individual inclinations, vasana, that also are neither positive nor negative. Hence, unconscious often acts upon us without knowing, driven by our inclinations that can be for Art, Science, Harmonization or Abuse, Peacefulness or Bellicosity; obviously, in order to really master ourselves, we have to clean up our minds thoroughly and to sweep away especially the negative inclinations.

There are very precise and effective techniques, that enable a voluntary transformation of the unconscious elements; this willing action is fundamental to start the meditative process. Just so, we can free our intuitive capacity, “the way of the heart”, that will be cleared only if the heart will be adequately purified. Actually, in order to bring to light the reality of ourselves, we cannot base our knowledge on sensory perception that represent just 0,1% of the external and internal reality, and it cannot even be based on the information circulating within the society, especially in this society where we live, highly technological, completely extroverted, aimed at exterior projects and where opinions are often prejudices.

The critical capacity is properly represented by the practice of Socratic dictum “I know that I do not know” that invites questioning, to not accept something as a priori just because observable through the senses or logical reasoning, to doubt in a constructive manner one’s own deepest convictions. So it is possible to transcend the concept of reality anchored in the material and psychic world, to overcome the mere rational function and the intellect that has “short wings” as Dante says, rediscovering our pure intuitive faculties that are typical of childish psyche, that underlie modern scientific research processes.

From this perspective, we do not refuse the intellect in general - “the good of intellect” still paraphrasing Dante - since it is a precious means of investigation if not abused at the expense of other cognitive channels , but it must be properly used to get as free as a pole vaulter who, after having made the swing faster, puts off and releases the pole to fly away.

All great discoveries are made by brilliant intuition, just later Positive Sciences as Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry will verify them experimentally, in order to make them clear to everybody, besides who conceived them. To explain, to share with others one’s own discoveries or realizations are feelings relevant to compassion, karuna, and to transmit them in a persuasive manner and with typical respect in the spirit of offering is fundamental for collective and individual growth, since what is offered to others will be given back to us. The best way to do ourselves good is to be doing good to others by offering what is most precious to us.

The actions we have taken affect us in an extraordinary way , releasing a photocopy in our minds that is embedded in our psychic structure; whatever we do, whatever we say, think, desire leaves a trace. Hence, in reference to Great Teachers and Connoisseurs of the Psyche, of Human Soul and Human Being, but above all of Man’s Divine Nature and Prison (quoting Plato and not despising the physical body), we can affirm that we are where we are since we desired, thought, said and acted in a certain way.

This vision is apparently deterministic, whilst in constant evolution: in the very moment we are talking or that you are reading, the change of our comprehension and samskara has already begun. Every desire, thought and word give birth to relevant and corresponding material manifestations.

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