Thursday, April 06, 2017

Restructuring Consciousness

"The holistic mode of consciousness is complementary to [analysis]... this mode is nonlinear, simultaneous, intuitive instead of verbal-intellectual, and concerned more with relationships than with the discrete elements that are related. It is important to realize that this mode of consciousness is a way of seeing, and as such it can only be experienced in its own terms. In particular, it cannot be understood by the verbal-intellectual mind because this functions in the analytical mode of consciousness, for which it is not possible to appreciate adequately what it means to say that a relationship can be experienced as something real in itself. In an analytical mode of consciousness it is the elements which are related that stand out in experience, compared with which the relationship is but a shadowy abstraction. The experience of a relationship as such is only possible through a transformation from a piecemeal way of thought to a simultaneous perception of the whole. Such a transformation amounts to a restructuring of consciousness itself. … Whereas we imagine movement and change analytically, as if the process really consisted of a linear sequence of instantaneously stationary states (like a sequence of snapshots), when movement and change are experienced holistically, they are experienced as a whole. The elements which are experienced simultaneously in this mode are thus dynamically related to each other, and this dynamical simultaneity replaces the static simultaneity of the analytical mode."

- Henri Bortoft (1938 - 2012)

1 comment:

Jesús Olmo said...

"Inquisitive vs Acquisitive"
The inquiring mind is open, it expands to take in whatever presents itself. It has no expectations or demands of what appears. It’s willing to see things as they are. Once something is seen and investigated, it is let go. No conclusions need to be reached. No final judgement needs to be made. The inquiring mind goes about lightly. It has no skin in the game.
The acquisitive mind tries to gain ground, gain real estate, turn information or knowledge into bricks, which are then used to continue building various edifices of Identity, Belief, and so forth. The acquisitive mind sorts, categorizes and collates experiences, ideas and information very well, but confuses having sorted them properly with having understood them deeply. Judgements need to be made, conclusions need to be reached. The acquisitive mind has to carry around all those sorted data, so it’s not easy to change course or be flexible.
The two modes feel very different. One is positionless, yet still very grounded and clear. The other has a stiff or rigid quality. Changing course can mean you have to go back and recalibrate all those data, reconcile all the ledgers so that it makes sense in a linear, logical way.
Even as you read this post, check in and see which mode you are in. Inquiring minds want to know!