Metaphysical literally means, “beyond the physical.” Religion is metaphysical. Some philosophies are metaphysical. Proof, in the scientific sense, cannot reach beyond the physical. Metaphysics is where we are all free to play. We can get lost too.
For a long time, I never ventured beyond the physical. I rejected it all and stayed safely inside materialism. Most scientists I knew and admired stayed inside with me. They were brilliant. I was in good company.
Outside was scary. Preachers hypnotized followers. Neurotics worried in isolation. Conspiracy theorists weaved hypotheticals. From my window, these people seemed lost. I didn’t realize that I was focusing on the worst cases to protect my choice; a choice rooted in fear.
I didn’t notice the Buddha or Jesus. I didn’t see the legions of artists chasing their particular dreams. I couldn’t hear the oratory of the existentialists and their proclamation of radical freedom.
There was one scientist who I noticed carried a ball of thread with him. As I observed him, I caught that occasionally he’d slip out whenever the others were busy debating semantics. He’d tie the thread to a polished rock he used to keep the door open, and he would adventure into the metaphysical playground!
He always came back, more, I think the best way to describe it is, alive. Sometimes his smile would be so wide his eyes became little slits. Other times his brow would be so furrowed his forehead vein could be seen pulsing. He was one of the more strange scientists, be he fascinated me. He answered to “Carl Jung.”
Jung was the man that liberated me from atheism. Religion in my youth was oppressive. Those who taught it were stiff, sharp, and stern. They embodied the ideology and they were not good people. I had questions early in childhood and the answers never satisfied. As I grew and the sophistication of my questions grew, the hostility of their responses grew.
When I was sixteen or seventeen, my mom was taking online college courses. One of her classes was an intro to philosophy course. She shared the ideas with me. That was the turning point. Before then, I had always questioned and had no answers. In philosophy, I started finding more answers then I knew how to organize.
The moment I found rationalism, the scientific method, and logic, I planted my flag. For years I proclaimed myself an atheist. I argued with the religious. I dove deep into logic and science. I became a cliché atheist. Rude, critical, mocking, and to the outside observer, obviously lacking spiritual happiness or fulfilment of any kind.
I think most atheists are coming from a place of genuine curiosity and a love to understand the world. The anger most of them seem to acquire is a response to the apparent absurdity and flawed-thinking in religion and spirituality. Couple this with the fact that most of these nonbelievers are completely shut off from mystical and divine experiences, anger flows naturally.
Around my junior year of high school, I ate a couple grams of dried psychedelic mushrooms. It would take me a couple of years to digest the experience. Essentially, my nervous system’s first metabolic dance with mushrooms ended my atheism. Experience trumped everything I had read in books. It took years to acquire the language to explain what happened. But I knew then that there was something more than rationalism, and to believe in rationalism as zealously as I did, was absurd to the point of fits of laughter and tears. I laughed and cried, my next six to seven psychedelic experiences.
My clinging to rationalism was absurd. Rationalism is a human construct. I believed in it, just as a Christian believes, or Muslim, or Jew believes in their respective realities. I found my hypocrisy hilarious. I took my learning rationalism and logic so seriously. I wanted to create a perfect system of thought. Psychedelics helped me see the futility. A little book, “Godel’s theorem,” gave me the words to understand my futility. I became agnostic.
The freedom of Agnostism left the door cracked open for Jung to stroll in. There are certainly other humans who have brought others out of their rationalistic wombs, but Jung being a psychiatrist and me fancying psychology; he was the mentor that supported my explorations into metaphysics. My current life still involves me exploring the metaphysical playground. Much to joy of my creative spirit, I’m finally getting the courage to build a little castle. If you are interested, I’d love to share some of the foundational sand bricks with you.
One of my castle’s bricks is inspired by Jung. I choose to play with the belief that all mystical and divine entites/manifestations/archetypes are within us. He called it the Universal Unconscious. Another way to say this, although vague and likely to cause a swarm of associations, is “God is within us.”
I think we can talk with God (I like to call her Goddess). I think she/he/it/love communicates with us in a few ways. One way Goddess communicates is through winks Jung called synchronicity. I can talk about this idea for hours but that isn’t the focus of this post. I think the divine also speaks to use through our unconscious. Dreams are the easiest avenue to the unconscious. This is another idea I’m going to talk at length about, but not day. Today is about stream-of-consciousness writing.
Every day I write three full pages, long-hand, stream-of-consciousness style. I got the idea from “The Artist’s Way” (A book I cannot recommend enough.) This book and this technique have spurred more personal growth in two months then I acquired all through college. Seriously. The magic of this exercise needs to be experienced.
The best resource is to buy “The Artist’s Way.” The second best course of action is to start writing three pages every morning. Don’t censor yourself. Don’t reread or show friends. Just get the unconscious, looping thoughts you carry every day and purge them onto the page. (But for reals, get the book.)
Writing these pages have brought me closer to Goddess. Or, writing these pages have helped med understand myself more. Its the same thing.
“Empty yourself so God can fill you up.”
“Empty yourself so God can fill you up.”
I love you. We all are riddled with unconscious, emotion-limiting, programs that we inherited from well-intentioned but naive parents. If you want to reach beyond your current life you need to start new habits. Start this habit. Learn to heal yourself. Tell me how it is going. I love you. Namaste.