Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Well Of Consciousness

What a thing it is to sit absolutely alone, In the forest at night cherished by this Wonderful, unintelligible, Perfectly innocent speech; The most comforting speech in the world. The talk that rain makes by itself all over the ridges. And the talk of the watercourses everywhere in the hollows! Nobody started it; nobody is going to stop it. It will take as long as it wants this rain. As long as it talks I am going to listen.

Thomas Merton, the author, poet and social reformer, was one of the most influential monks of the 20th century. He wrote more than 60 books and scores of essays and reviews. He was proponent of inter-religious understanding. He met and had conversations with the Dalai Lama, Thich Nhat Hanh, and D.T. Suzuki. Merton liked to have conversations about individual beliefs and the value of religious unity.

Merton understood that the inner self is a portion of our consciousness that is not controlled by our perception of time and space. Merton was Catholic, but he was also a student of Zen. He believed that Zen is an aspect of the inner self. Sitting in the forest at night, he physically experienced his inner self. He discovered the voice of the conscious rain. He perceived the voice using his religious belief structure.

We all interpret our experiences using aspects of our religious and scientific belief structure. The ego with all its bodily connections must deal with the beliefs created by our sensual perceptions. We live in a body of beliefs, but the inner self is free to listen, and to act as it creates more rain from the well of consciousness.

No comments: