Excerpt About Thoughts

Awareness of the Presence of Being Does Not Exclude Awareness of the Functions of the Psyche

When we fully experience and understand essential presence, we are aware of what some traditions term primordial presence, and this presence includes other aspects of the self. Awareness of the presence of Being does not exclude awareness of the body and its sensations, feelings and emotions, the mind with its thoughts, images, and ideas, and the totality of the functions of the psyche—such as imagination, thinking, planning, and remembering—and the rest of what ego psychology calls the ego functions. Many spiritual teachings, such as Kabala, Sufism, Kashmir Shaivism, and Taoism, share the understanding of the self as a unity that includes the spiritual dimensions and the usual psychological and physical manifestations. The complete multidimensional self can be experienced only in the fullest realization of presence. In this condition of primordial presence, thoughts, feelings and images do exist, but in a different way than they do in the conventional dimension of experience. These aspects of the self are felt to be completely inseparable from presence itself, not in the sense of two things tied together, but in the sense of coemergence. We do not experience the body as the container of the presence; nor do we experience presence as containing the body. These perceptions might appear in the course of spiritual development, but they are incomplete in that they retain the duality between presence and body. When the experience of oneself as primordial presence is complete, this presence is coemergent with the body.

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