Something about consciousness triggered a thought last night


I understood something about consciousness last night that I hadn’t grasped before. 

Talking about reincarnation, Alan Watts began to discuss how we do not begin at birth and end at death. Still, in my head, I wanted to scream, “Look at my body. It is all that I can live through. When it is gone, I am gone.” But I realised that is the easy way of looking at it. 

It is materialistic. 

What he was saying was that what we truly are is our consciousness. And consciousness is not something that is unique to me. I understand now that consciousness is also not turned on or off, there are degrees to it. But for the most part, consciousness is very similar for all of us. Not our conscious experiences, but consciousness itself. 

In a sense, I am just consciousness looking through my specific body. I use my mind which has been predisposed with certain abilities, traits, tendencies, etc… Using this mind with which I was predestined, I am living my life through this general consciousness. And if that consciousness is similar for everybody, then if I was born with somebody else’s body and mind, I would live a very similar life to theirs. 

Sure, maybe I wouldn’t be exactly the same as the way they are in THIS universe. But somewhere out there, I am the same as them. Somewhere out there, they are the consciousness looking through me. But it is oversimplified to say I am the consciousness or they are the consciousness because consciousness is just a thing in itself. Consciousness simply IS. 

So when we say that our life does not end it is because consciousness will surely come after us. And after all, isn’t that consciousness what we truly identify with? It is a trick to identify with the mind or the body because we have such little control over these things.
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