Freeing Power of Humor

Who doesn’t enjoy a good laugh? Laughter can have positive physical effects on the body and can play a huge role in the relief of mental-emotional stress. As a healing agent, laughter can stir up and cause the release of hidden defenses like bias, prejudice, and other thinking errors.

Rigid adherence to programs limits my experience by blinding me to alternatives. This certitude affects how I experience humor. When in certitude, one feels they must follow the program – from which they can’t “let go” and they can’t “move on.” In this fixed state of mind, I accept the wrongness of humor and thus reinforce the rightness of certitude.

Between the absolute rigidity of certitude and extreme flexibility of the undefined lay ambiguity. Ambiguity offers variety in interpretation of expression, a recognition of a paradox, and the essence of humor.

Healing Power of Humor

Perhaps humor exposes the paradox in and absurdity of my extreme rigidity or flexibility. Once I’ve exposed my secret defenses, I have an opportunity to deal with them. Sometimes recognition of a paradox in my belief, behavior, or thought process brings me a chuckle that grows in the sharing.

Laughter, then, may be the manifestation of release of defense. Perhaps the compliment my laughter gives to a comedian is a “thank you” for helping me see the ambiguity in my defense.

When the feeling of freedom to choose returns because of the recognition of ambiguity, I may express that feeling as bliss, exhilaration, love. Those are the same feelings I express when connected to my gratitude.

When I get triggered, it’s because one or more of my beliefs has been challenged. Humor can offer us a gift for consciously questioning our triggers. When a joke strikes a nerve, it’s probably presenting me an opportunity to question a hidden belief.

When I don’t find humor in a type of comedy, it may be because I’ve invested in a hidden defense I’m not yet ready to let go of. I may be so invested in a drama related to the comedy that I can’t see the humor in it – yet. This is so especially when I feel offended by the comic presentation.

Psychological Benefit

Once aware of the hidden defense, I might inquire into it and derive psychological benefit from the experience. Even acknowledgement of my defense can open the door to philosophical inquiry.

Like humor, this type of questioning requires an environment of ambiguity in which I make myself open to alternative interpretations. This openness presents options for choices.

Commitment to one option collapses ambiguity into the certitude of a choice. Defense follows to support the choice, reinforcing certainty and resisting ambiguity.

In a balanced environment of certainty and ambiguity, philosophical inquiry can raise awareness and open doors to creativity. And maybe a good laugh!

Remember – both certainty and vagueness are necessary aspects of experience. How rigidly I apply either determines the level of paradox I experience in my life. A paradox subject to exposure that can come in the form of humor.

When life seems so serious it can’t be funny, maybe I’ve overlooked an opportunity. Then may be the time to seek and find a good laugh.

Perhaps the best laugh is the one I have on myself, the ultimate paradox of absurdity and reason. When faced with a paradox, question them!

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The Appearance of Love in Countering Wholeness

Why would countering wholeness appear as love? How would countering wholeness appear as love? What the hell am I talking about?!!

Within my bubble of limited awareness, I must limit my understanding of wholeness to, “The state of forming a complete and harmonious whole.” Sounds to me a lot like separateness in which I compare this wholeness to that wholeness. Maybe I can’t help perceiving wholeness in terms of separation.

Beyond limited awareness, wholeness may be incomprehensible. Even to define wholeness, I must limit its infinite nature to a “something” that is finite enough that I can contain it in a definition. Thus, confirming I was right to limit perception of wholeness to my limited awareness of it.

An Unbridgeable Gap?

In limited awareness, I can only perceive infinite love and infinite wholeness in terms of limited – finite! – awareness. To perceive infinity, I must extend my limited awareness into unlimited awareness – an impossibility in limited – finite – awareness. Even to consider something as infinite, I must first define that infinite “something” in finite terms so I can compare it against “something” else I consider infinite. Thus, I limit wholeness and reinforce my finite perception of infinity! This conundrum may represent an unbridgeable awareness gap.

Editor’s note: wholeness INCLUDES all separate “somethings” just as infinity INCLUDES all finite “somethings.” Although wholeness is infinite, I experience it as finite. So, I’ve created a method to bridge the unbridgeable gap. Conditional love!

Since separateness supports me as an individual, I experience wholeness in the form of relationships – me vs you. The more like me you appear, the more I believe we are whole together. Wholeness, then, becomes a matter of agreement.

Love as agreement appears as confirmation of wholeness in which individuality counters wholeness. That’s why I perceive everything in terms of relationships with me as the central point of reference.

I want experience! Therefore, I must believe that my counter to wholeness supports that. Why? Because I defend my actions and beliefs as my acknowledgment of love. I feel love when I defend a divided reality – “I (an individual) love YOU (the appearance of someone ELSE who agrees with me).” Love becomes a symbol of proof of wholeness when it actually proves need. I need agreement (that love confirms).

Because I define everything in terms of this vs that, I cannot begin to comprehend infinite. Therefore, perhaps I’m incapable of comprehending infinite love. So, I assign “love” as a symbol that represents, and so defends, my finite reality. Countering wholeness!

Love Countering Wholeness

Because I perceive love as “outside me,” those counters that support love as less-than-whole support me as less-than-whole – and appear as NOT ME. You plus me appears to add up to love and wholeness. Yet, because of my firm defense of separation, all my concepts of love instead counter any concept of such wholeness. Faulty equation!

That means I must constantly test for wholeness in my relationships – testing that always comes up short. Thus, defending my concept of wholeness as an unachievable goal.

Suppose I wanted to expand my awareness beyond the limitation that perceives love as a reward for countering wholeness. How might I get to that awareness?

I could ask myself questions that counter my intentions. Since intention can be associated with need and need fulfillment, start with some basic needs you can’t live without. For example, “If I don’t get this need satisfied, I’ll die.”

The Challenge!

Let’s explore some awareness-expanding questions that might challenge limited awareness.

What Questions: What…

  • happened?
  • is my intention in this experience?
  • other intention might I have than the one I’m aware of?
  • is the need I’m trying to fulfill in my intention(s)?
  • other need(s) might this intention suggest?
  • must one believe in order to need that?
  • else might one believe in order to need that?
  • is love in relation to this/that intention?

How Questions: How…

  • did this intention cause this result?
  • else might this intention cause this result?
  • might I think differently about this intention?
  • else might I consider a different intention?
  • does this result demonstrate an intention of which I’m unaware (an unintended consequence due to unaware intention)?
  • does this experience demonstrate my concept of love?

Why Questions: Why…

  • this intention rather than another?
  • do I need this need or this intention?
  • is this so important to me?
  • do I trust my perception of this?
  • must I be right about this?
  • did love appear like it did in this experience?
  • am I defending this perception of less-than-wholeness as love?
  • Extra points for answering the above WHY questions without using the word “because.”

Who Questions: Who am I…

  • beyond my countered wholeness?
  • who projected and responded to this concept of being in this experience?
  • now that I’m enlightened by these questions?
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Questioning Perception to Clarify Choice

How Choice Confirms the Paradox I Intend to Resolve

I rarely think about my intentions when people are agreeable and things are going well. I may still be unaware of my intentions when I act on perceived threats, reverting automatically to defense. This because my focus is on choice as the application of defense of the intention rather than on the intention. Regardless of my intentions, any choice I consider or make within the bubble is in defense of the separation paradox.

Thus, choice defends intention that defends perception.

That seems like a pretty poor strategy for resolving a paradox! How do I intend to resolve a paradox by choosing to confirm it? That sounds a bit confusing to me!

Might confusion be the strategy of choice?

Consider how convinced you feel when reason aligns with perception. When “how” and “why” align with sensory “what” – “I know this is true, because [a logical reason].” As I consider how stubbornly unmovable I get when I feel convinced of my “truth”, a little confusion may indeed be in order.

How does that work?

I use automation, of course! I engage a policy-management, self-regulating process to carry out my choices without question. Think mechanical process – “When this, do that.” Over time and experience, I learn to trust my choices – no questions necessary!

When I choose for, I also choose against. The process defends both sides of the argument. From an energy conservation perspective, it’s brilliant! The same reason I use in defense of one option I favor also defends why I’m right in not choosing another option. In choosing the road to the left, I’ve also chosen not to take the road to the right – for the same reasons.

Although this process manipulates conflicting concepts to maintain a sense of rightness, it adds paradox to paradox.

Let’s Recap!

  1. By perceiving, I set up a fundamental paradox of deficit within wholeness.
  2. I intend to resolve this paradox by setting up a system in which need-fulfillment feels like paradox resolution.
  3. To defend the intention, I create a life story that sets the parameters within which, as the hero, I must satisfy the ultimate need – survival of the paradox!
  4. I sustain the fundamental paradox by masking it behind paradoxical choices.

I can challenge my choices. Why? Because they’re not set in stone! They’re just concepts I’ve accepted as “right” and so, true. By questioning a choice, I open a space for understanding the philosophy and intent behind it. I might even let go of my defense of the current choice. It’s at least an opening.

Questioning

Questioning my choices may be cutting myself short of a realistic answer. My process isn’t designed to question itself because it is the answers. It has the right reasons for my survival and simply applies an appropriate defense. Therefore, questions intended to check the reasons for a system of defense must come from outside the system. Questions from within a system of defense tend to confirm the system.

Perhaps questioning my intention,rather than my perception would open a space for something new. Change the input change the output.

This means I want to design questions that awaken the process and its system of defense to itself. The answers to those questions will bring enlightenment to the process and promote clarity to a paradoxical reality.

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Projection and the Dance of Light

I imagine my life as a projection in limited illumination. I perceive a dance between light and dark that makes everything appear real. Contrast provides a sense of definition that I use to compare and judge. These judgements turn light into a story.

Ever notice how poorly other people behave? Maybe your boss is a jerk, some guy on the news robbed a store, and your teenage son… well, you get the idea. Some people! Why do they do bad things?

Perhaps you’ve noticed how amazing some people are. People who can play an instrument, sing well, create artwork, or some other great accomplishment. The world is full of really amazing people doing amazing things. Amazing! Why can they do such amazing things?

The answer to those questions may surprise you! It did me! And still does when I find myself knocking on the doors of Fourth Degree of Illumination awareness.

From a Fourth Degree perspective, within First-Second Degree of Illumination bubble awareness, I develop an external sense of Self by projecting aspects of myself as perceptions of others, creating an apparent relationship (me vs you). By Self, I mean that entity of consciousness that is and interacts with everything it perceives – body, mind, environment, the universe.

Dream Projection?

Ever try to see yourself? Not your body or your image in the mirror – you!

Perhaps I experience Self like scientists view black holes in space – through evidence of its effects on its environment. I can’t see a black hole. I can see its effects. In other words, I experience Self through the effects Self has on perception.

This is how I experience ME – in a perceptual relationship with NOT ME. This is the essence of bubble awareness – I defend a projection of ME that appears as NOT ME.

I project an image of ME as a defense to protect ME from NOT ME. Since NOT ME is only an apparition, I’m counting on my imagination to make that illusion real – and make me feel safe.

Projecting from a place of fear protects me from waking up. In that dream, fear guides and controls what I experience. When I’m protecting ME from NOT ME, it’s an indication I’m still believing in a dream.

When I recognize that dream as my dream, I recognize ME and NOT ME as ONE in a dance of light.

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Oneness Apart from One

I define the concept one as the single source of everything – me, my projection of reality. I also define oneness as the condition of perceiving one as an individual separate from others. One cannot be measured by dividing self against itself, yet, oneness can as perception. Oneness doesn’t create, it only perceives an illusion of divisibility and indivisibility.

In oneness, I define everything in terms of perceived constituent parts (less than one). This compared to a standard, part compared to whole, content compared to context, and etc.

Oneness provides perception of this separation by defining boundaries or limits and assigning meaning. Like a whiteboard presentation, oneness equates to the whole whiteboard while the markings I make on the board appear to be separate yet are part of the whole whiteboard presentation. Content within context by way of definition.

About Definition

Mathematically and logically speaking, more or less than one is NOT one. Just as 2 is more than and therefore not 1, and .9 is less than and therefore not 1 either, I can use one as the reference point for comparisons. That is, one can perceive separation where there is none – by definition.

To make definitions, I measure me against not me. Oneness facilitates comprehension of me as an individual separate from not me.

One cannot be measured by dividing self against itself – one divided by itself is one. Yet, one can perceive more and less than as an illusion of separation.

Through the agency of choice, I can choose to perceive one as divisible, while remaining indivisible.

I measure what I value by attaching its importance and purpose to me. I perceive what serves me by supporting my reality and what threatens it.

My assigned values support me to experience competition for my perceived benefit or threat. That which I judge as winners or losers represent me as such. My judgements are my measure of self.

Everything and Nothing

I measure everything that I perceive affects my reality. The values I create are revealed through my projections. The concept “me” competes with the concept of “not me” to sustain this illusion of separation.

The values I assign between things allows me to perceive competition in myself. By measuring the loss and gain between values allows me to judge myself as a winner or loser. Measuring what limits me allows me to perceive what I am not.

What I am capable of as one with source is unlimited creation and unlimited experience. I already know how to create through competition and limitation.

Knowing I can create my experience in a new way, I give myself permission to explore even further than before.

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