Magic and Delusion

Like an Almond Seed which has the potential to blossom into a majestic Almond tree, so too, the human has the potential to manifest Buddhahood. The almond has a bitter agent which impedes it from sprouting; thus, only when there is sufficient water to wash-away this agent will the Almond be able to manifest the tree. Likewise, when we wash away bitter delusion from within our own life, we will be able to manifest our Supreme Buddhahood. For this we send the black bottom bucket down the Dharma Well.

We have been indoctrinated by the supposed unequivocal determinism of science; but it is only an academic tool for stimulating understanding of the world about us. We must isolate the tool from the political agenda.

Science is the art of dissection and segmentation. Science looks at small systems in isolation, and then becomes a construct to interpolate and/or extrapolate the truth of this small system as if it was not isolated.

I do not admonish science for its fallibility; but rather implore the proper use of its findings. We may use it as a tool for understanding, and use it to aid in washing away delusion; or we may use it for political means of control and subversion. It is our choice. Everything within our lives may be used for our benefit or our detriment. Are we to fall into the skin of the sheep, or reside upon the lion seat?

Quantum mechanics has demonstrated an illusive truth which has historically been a principle of many religions. And this is the idea that reality is what  we observe as reality — that reality does not exist without the observer. With the demonstrated concept of uncertainty, a particle has a cloud of possibilities, and only when there is an observer will this particle manifest a weight, a charge, a location… This concept is the foundation of Buddhism, as well as many other religions.

The “observer” in our hypothetical experiment is a human; and a human is innately egotistical. It is this attitude of the observer which settles the hypothetical particle into a state of reality which we identify with. Without this ego, we would observe this “particle” as a cloud. Indeed, the Buddha would observe this particle as a cloud of possibilities only manifested when tainted by ego.

As we continue our practice of correct living, chanting and study; we will gradually lift the cloud of delusion, and understand the origin of suffering.

The use of illustration can translate a mythical / mystical / ethereal notion into the realm of a shared reality… the “material” world.

Magic and the ritual it institutes is a process of action which we have lost-touch-with. It is no longer a part of our “reality.”  Or is it? If we are wishing to make a cake, there are a number of steps that we believe must be followed for the results to be manifested. We must combine milk, flour, sugar, eggs and leavening. Yet, before we entertain this ritual we must weigh or measure the ingredients so that they are in the correct proportions for this magic to work. This segment of the ritual may involve the use of scales, or cups & spoons. We may perform a further ritual of sifting the flour, as this added ritual has the affect of making the final product (the cake) lighter in texture and more pleasing to our senses — as we perform a further ritual of consuming the cake, resulting in the stimulation of our senses of pleasure through feeling, smelling and tasting.

We may look on as a pagan wraps a chicken in a palm leaf and buries it on the North side of the corn crop in the belief that this procedure will insure a successful harvest. Maybe this makes sense to them, or did make sense to their ancestors, in the context of a larger procedure. Let us not so quickly ridicule what we do not understand.

In the future, replicators (Star Trek) will materialize a cake for our pleasure without this strange ritual, and the contemporaries of that generation will look at the ancient art of baking a cake as a strange bit of mumbo-jumbo; for it may only be half-remembered — passing a white powdery substance through a metallic religious icon whilst rotating a closed hand slowly clockwise, to the right side of the icon… etc.

We may consider our current ritual simply a procedure; and the magical result as simply the desired result of that procedure. But, make no mistake; in the distant future it will be looked upon as some strange archaic magic only believed by psychotic witches or the ancient Londonians.

In order to break through the thick tar of the black bottom bucket — delusion in our current sectarian existence; we must be willing to acknowledge our illegitimate claim to truth and law. We must simultaneously draw water from the Dharma Well and break the Bucket. Do you have such courage?

02 June 2013 – Cimi Skywalker