19 Aug
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How the Mind Creates Reality

Our KM Book Group is now reading the chapter on “Formations and Consciousness,” in Joseph Goldstein’s Mindfulness book.

He writes: The great challenge here is both to understand consciousness as a magical display and at the same time to live a life of wisdom and compassion, engaged with the world. An intriguing description of how these two levels inform one another, of how the mind creates the reality we experience, was written by Victor S. Johnston in his book, Why We Feel: The Science of Human Emotions:

“Consider a world without consciousness. The darkness is a bubbling cauldron of energy and vibrating matter, locked in the dance of thermal agitation. Through shared electrons, or the strange attraction of unlike charges, quivering molecules, not free to roam, absorb and emit their characteristic quanta packages of energy with the surrounding fog. Free gas molecules, almost oblivious to gravity but buffeted in all directions by their neighbors, form swirling turbulent flows or march in zones of compression and expansion…

“A massive solar flux and cosmic radiation from events long past crisscross space with their radiant energy and silently mix with the thermal glow of living creatures…

“[W]ithin the warmth of their sticky protein bodies, the dim glow of consciousness is emerging to impose its own brand of organization on this turbulent mix of energy/matter. The active filter of consciousness illuminates the darkness, discards all irrelevant radiation, and in a grand transmutation converts and amplifies the relevant. Dead molecules erupt into flavors of bitterness or sweetness, electromagnetic frequencies burst with color, hapless air pressure waves become the laughter of children, and the impact of a passing molecule fills a conscious mind with the aroma of roses on a warm summer afternoon.”   

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