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Go Back   Spiritual Forums > Spirituality & Beliefs > Non Duality

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Old 07-06-2020, 11:42 AM
LadyVictoria LadyVictoria is offline
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Where there is a will there is a way! But what is "will" exactly?

As I've been contemplating my spiritual lessons from both inner and outer sources I'm trying to ponder these ideas of "free will", "will power" and "Divine Will" from a non-dualistic perspective.

I've been meditating on this question as to what exactly my "will" is and why do I have this thing called a will? Is it truly free? And does my individual will differ from Divine will? With that last question we even have to ask what is meant by "Divine" and how does that differ from the individual.

Speaking non-dualistically I would say there is no differentiation from the Divine and the individual. By Divine I mean "all that is." The individual is a integrated part of all that is that just happens to be more focused on it's parts rather than it's whole.

If the individual is an expression of the Divine then I would say that the will of the individual is also an expression of the will of the Divine or Cosmos, or God or all-that-is or whatever verbal label you want to give it.

That being said now what is "will" itself? It's not desire although it's definitely tied into desires but more specifically it's having a desire and then deciding that you want to make that desire real. You want it to manifest, materialize and have it be a part of your living experience.

Combined together I would say will starts with a desire is initiated through decision or choice and finally either moves you towards or attracts that thing which you decided you want to experience.

That's about as far as I've gotten with this concept this morning and would be very interested in hearing from others as to what you think will is and is it "free" to do and decide as it pleases or is it tied into a karmic sense of ones intended destiny.

From a non-dualistic perspective I would say that there's no way the individual will can be in opposition to that of the Divine Will because there's no real separation between individual self and Divine Self. Or would you disagree?

Looking forward to an illuminating discussion on this topic.

Last edited by LadyVictoria : 07-06-2020 at 07:36 PM.
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Old 07-06-2020, 12:40 PM
JustASimpleGuy JustASimpleGuy is offline
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I've given this some thought and my conclusion is from the perspective of mind-body, the material reductionist view, both free will and consciousness are illusions. Lab experiments conducted by neuroscience and psychology support free will being an illusion, whereas while consciousness is thought to also be an illusion it can't even begin to be explained from a scientific perspective so it's purely speculative.

If one gets deep enough into meditative practice one can see just how little free will we actually have. All those thoughts going on beneath the surface and we are never truly aware of them until they manifest into action. Even when one gains a certain mastery of the meditative state they can still be there, however we are aware of them and this is where some form of free will comes into play and action is then a choice.

Now from a non-dual perspective and where there is only One consciousness it cannot be of mind-body. The mind-body level of "consciousness" is just a reflection of the One consciousness illuminating mind. When one's identity shifts from mind-body to that One consciousness then the doings of mind is but an interesting and useful tool, and the possibility of free will can be realized.

I accept both realities, that of material reductionism (the physical universe) and that of non-duality (all within One and One within all). Existence, Consciousness, Bliss and Maya. It's a perfect fit and seems to make sense to me.
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Old 07-06-2020, 01:20 PM
LadyVictoria LadyVictoria is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustASimpleGuy
I've given this some thought and my conclusion is from the perspective of mind-body, the material reductionist view, both free will and consciousness are illusions. Lab experiments conducted by neuroscience and psychology support free will being an illusion, whereas while consciousness is thought to also be an illusion it can't even begin to be explained from a scientific perspective so it's purely speculative.

My biggest problem with your opening statement is what is meant by "illusion".

What is an illusion? Is it a trick? An act of misdirection? To me that is a exactly what an illusion is. It's a misdirection that tricks us into thinking something is what it isn't.

In that sense then "consciousness" and "free will" are the result of misdirection and we're simply being tricked into thinking these things actually exist when they don't.

I find that too nonsensical for my highly analytic brain. Perhaps you can enlighten me more on what you actually mean by "illusions".

Personally I find the term "illusion" or defining Maya as illusionary troublesome because I think both the term and definition of illusion greatly misses the mark and just leads to greater distortion and confusion regarding these concepts.

Recently I've been listening to readings on reality transurfing and this idea of "illusions" is replaced by the concepts of "mirrors" or "reflections. JustASimpleGuy even states that our mind-body (individual) "consciousness" is a reflection of the One.

In that case both our consciousness and our will is a reflection of the consciousness and will of the One or all-that-is.

I think it may serve us best to move away from thinking of reality as illusionary and seeing it more in terms of being reflective. Thinking of our individualized personal reality as a reflection of the reality of the One brings us a bit closer to the absolute truth of the matter. Agree or disagree?
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Old 07-06-2020, 01:52 PM
JustASimpleGuy JustASimpleGuy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyVictoria
My biggest problem with your opening statement is what is meant by "illusion".

What is an illusion? Is it a trick? An act of misdirection? To me that is a exactly what an illusion is. It's a misdirection that tricks us into thinking something is what it isn't.

In that sense then "consciousness" and "free will" are the result of misdirection and we're simply being tricked into thinking these things actually exist when they don't.

I find that too nonsensical for my highly analytic brain. Perhaps you can enlighten me more on what you actually mean by "illusions".

Personally I find the term "illusion" or defining Maya as illusionary troublesome because I think both the term and definition of illusion greatly misses the mark and just leads to greater distortion and confusion regarding these concepts.

Recently I've been listening to readings on reality transurfing and this idea of "illusions" is replaced by the concepts of "mirrors" or "reflections. JustASimpleGuy even states that our mind-body (individual) "consciousness" is a reflection of the One.

In that case both our consciousness and our will is a reflection of the consciousness and will of the One or all-that-is.

I think it may serve us best to move away from thinking of reality as illusionary and seeing it more in terms of being reflective. Thinking of our individualized personal reality as a reflection of the reality of the One brings us a bit closer to the absolute truth of the matter. Agree or disagree?

As I said, I fully embrace physical reality with the caveat it has no inherent existence. That is its existence is dependent on that which does have inherent existence and that's Source, One, Divine, Absolute, Existence-Consciousness-Bliss, however one wishes to label it.

One example I like to use is that of fundamental forces. At the current energy level of the universe we have four distinct and separate forces: Gravity, electromagnestism, Nuclear weak force and nuclear strong force. The electroweak force is at a higher energy level and at that energy level there exists only three: Gravity, nuclear strong force and electroweak force.

If one gives serious consideration to non-duality then something has to give. We can have Absolute reality and transaction reality, however both cannot be equally real, independent of each other. One has to be more real than the other. Dependent on the other. We can even say the "real" in the sense of unchanging permanence and "unreal" in the sense of changing impermanence. That's all that's meant by real and unreal/illusion.

From a personal perspective individuality has to be considered less real than Oneness, and one is not mind-body but the One. While Its aspects might be reflected in the individual (the Advaita term would be illumined) the problems (suffering) arise when identification is centered on the individual.

Another symptom of giving non-dualism serious consideration is a lot of discomfort and resistance early on to the actual philosophy.

By the way, I'm highly analytical too. It's part of my job description. I've been in IT as a programmer/analyst since 1981 and I've also given this very topic much thought, especially over the past decade.
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"Research your own experience; absorb what is useful, reject what is useless and add what is essentially your own." ~ Bruce Lee

"Of a certainty the man who can see all creatures in himself, himself in all creatures, knows no sorrow." ~ Upanishads

https://tinyurl.com/y2mxr4s2 My YouTube Channel

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  #5  
Old 07-06-2020, 01:58 PM
HITESH SHAH HITESH SHAH is offline
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will non-dualistic

Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyVictoria
Speaking non-dualistically I would say there is no differentiation from the Divine and the individual. By Divine I mean "all that is." The individual is a integrated part of all that is that just happens to be more focused on it's parts rather than it's whole.

If the individual is an expression of the Divine then I would say that the will of the individual is also an expression of the will of the Divine or Cosmos, or God or all-that-is or whatever verbal label you want to give it.

The way will arises non-dualistically in you , it arises non-dualistically on others . If the will arising in you is good , well meaning , reasonable and not against the will and decisions of others non-dualistic beings , your will may get realized .

We need to realise non-dualistically our consciousness in the mind-body form is a mere cog in the giant wheel of cosmic spirit . It is the will of cosmic spirit collectively that translates into reality for sure ( and not a small will arising in the mind body form consciousness of an individual) .
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Old 07-06-2020, 01:58 PM
HITESH SHAH HITESH SHAH is offline
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will non-dualistic

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Old 07-06-2020, 03:42 PM
LadyVictoria LadyVictoria is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JustASimpleGuy
As I said, I fully embrace physical reality with the caveat it has no inherent existence. That is its existence is dependent on that which does have inherent existence and that's Source, One, Divine, Absolute, Existence-Consciousness-Bliss, however one wishes to label it.

Physical reality has no inherent existence - really? If that's the case then what is it I'm actually experiencing right now? An illusion? A false reality? I don't agree.

I think that it may be better to say that physical reality is inherently finite and impermanent which is not the same as non-existent. All-that-is conversely is infinite and eternal and in my opinion that's the fundamental difference between the two.

Reality is real and true and it exists. That I have no doubt and it's why we call it "reality". If it doesn't exist what's the point of having a word for it or even having the ability to have this discourse about it? We exist. That's a given. However what composes reality, it's many complex layers and the mechanism which makes it function is my main concern and point of meditative focus.

I was meditating this morning on this concept of what is and what isn't and who am I really in relation to all that exists within my personal reality.

First off let us move away from the concept of physical reality or the 3-dimensional world and focus on personal reality. That is the reality that we each experience within our own individual lifetimes. This reality is composed our awake-time material world, an immaterial world of our imagination and finally our alternate sleep-dream world which appears just as material as awake-time but more loosely strung together (as in not as tightly bound by time-space perceptions) than our awake-time world. These are the things that actually compose our personal reality (i.e. all of our experiences combined) all of which are all finite, transient, and impermanent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JustASimpleGuy
From a personal perspective individuality has to be considered less real than Oneness, and one is not mind-body but the One. While Its aspects might be reflected in the individual (the Advaita term would be illumined) the problems (suffering) arise when identification is centered on the individual.

I've been working on an essay about the myth of ego and the idea that clinging to our individual identity or self-preservation of the "ego" is the source of our pain and suffering is incorrect and misleading. I think that the idea of an ego-complex is completely false and that this false concept about the human psyche has created a tremendous amount of personal psychosis amongst individuals. I think the concept of human beings having an ego is an invention of human intellectualism just as inches are an invention of measurement. . I do not think that our identification as an individualized personal self is in and of itself the root cause of suffering. I think rather it is our inability and ignorance when it comes to reconciling the inner reality of the individual self the the outer reality of individual others that brings suffering. Basically our inability to control anything outside our individual-self which leads to both our inner angst and outer conflicts with others. Which brings me around to the question of will and what is it? How does it come to rise and why do we act upon it? Simply calling "will-power" illusionary does not answer any of those questions.

Looking back at the above paragraph I can see how it's through frustration of not having what we desire come to pass no matter how hard we will it to be as being more central to the source of our emotional pain and suffering.

If you let go of want and will you can still be an individual focused on your own personal experience (which btw you can not detach from which is why I think the whole idea of detaching oneself from oneself is pure nonsense) then you won't feel any angst or anxiety over that which isn't or won't be, but rather you come to a place where you can just accept and enjoy where you are at as well accept and embrace others just as they are.

As I'm writing this essay yesterday for my blog I had stop when it came to defining "will". I'm really grateful to have found this forum so I can bounce these ideas off someone. I really need to pinpoint this and translate the idea in a way others can grasp.

However JASG your example of energy forces I did not understand one bit.

Dammit Jim I'm a metaphysician! Not a physicist!

You can chose to let that lie or actually try to explain what those actually are and what it is analogous of. Otherwise it just reminds me of my high school chemistry teacher trying to explain the differences between nuclear fusion and fission. 30 years later I'm still lost.

I also have no idea what "material reductionism" is. I know I could just Google the term but I would like to know how you define it to be since you seem to agree with it. I see the the material world and our experience of it as being expansive rather than reductive. Even dissecting the physical world into its base elemental components just expands it even more within both the macrocosm and microcosm of our universe. Is there a school of thought called "material expansionism"? If there isn't there should be.
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Old 07-06-2020, 03:58 PM
HITESH SHAH HITESH SHAH is offline
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elaborate individualized personal self

Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyVictoria
I do not think that our identification as an individualized personal self is in and of itself the root cause of suffering.

You may be right or wrong depending on how exactly this individual personal self is identified / defined/ associated . Try to put some 10-15 sentences in this aspect and probably you may get answer.
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Old 07-06-2020, 04:12 PM
Iamit Iamit is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyVictoria
As I've been contemplating my spiritual lessons from both inner and outer sources I'm trying to ponder these ideas of "free will", "will power" and "Divine Will" from a non-dualistic perspective.

I've been meditating on this question as to what exactly my "will" is and why do I have this thing called a will? Is it truly free? And does my individual will differ from Divine will? With that last question we even have to ask what is meant by "Divine" and how does that differ from the individual.

Speaking non-dualistically I would say there is no differentiation from the Divine and the individual. By Divine I mean "all that is." The individual is a integrated part of all that is that just happens to be more focused on it's parts rather than it's whole.

If the individual is an expression of the Divine then I would say that the will of the individual is also an expression of the will of the Divine or Cosmos, or God or all-that-is or whatever verbal label you want to give it.

That being said now what is "will" itself? It's not desire although it's definitely tied into desires but more specifically it's having a desire and then deciding that you want to make that desire real. You want it to manifest, materialize and have be a part of your living experience.

Combined together I would say will starts with a desire is initiated through decision and finally either moves you towards or attracts that thing which you decided you want to experience.

That's about as far as I've gotten with this concept this morning and would be very interested in hearing from others as to what you think will is and is it "free" to do and decide as it pleases or is it tied into a karmic sense of ones intended destiny.

From a non-dualistic perspective I would say that there's no way the individual will can be in opposition to that of the Divine Will because there's no real separation between individual self and Divine Self. Or would you disagree?

Looking forward to an illuminating discussion on this topic.

The most common view in Neo Advaita is that there are no separate persons, so noone to have willpower. So what appears to be a person with willpower is Oneness appearing as the illusion of a separate person with will power.

Also there is the view in some nondual circles that there is an infinate automatic balancing system, which is an illusion of separation referred to as duality, that determines what happens to maintain that balance on an infinate scale that is not always apparent locally.
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Old 07-06-2020, 04:15 PM
JustASimpleGuy JustASimpleGuy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyVictoria
Physical reality has no inherent existence - really? If that's the case then what is it I'm actually experiencing right now? An illusion? A false reality? I don't agree.

Truly. Take the analogy of clay and pot. Pot cannot exist without clay but clay can exist without pot. Is the pot real? Sure, but does it have existence independent of clay? No.
Is clay real? Yes. Does it have existence independent of pot? Yes.

Same is true for physical reality and Absolute reality. Our universe has existence but not independent of that which it appears within, otherwise known as Brahman AKA Existence-Consciousness-Bliss. In physics it might be the Unified Field or the quantum wave function or more likely something more fundamental and beyond.

Even physics, namely quantum physics, speaks to the distinct possibility of objective reality not being "real". That there's a much more fundamental reality on which objective physical reality is dependent, and that would be the quantum wave function.

The thing with non-duality is it's appealing to the dualistic mind until the implications become apparent to said dualistic mind, especially what's referred to as ego. It doesn't want to give up it's primacy of identity.

As I said if all is within One and One within all there cannot be two identities, that of Self and that of self. Something has to give.
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"Research your own experience; absorb what is useful, reject what is useless and add what is essentially your own." ~ Bruce Lee

"Of a certainty the man who can see all creatures in himself, himself in all creatures, knows no sorrow." ~ Upanishads

https://tinyurl.com/y2mxr4s2 My YouTube Channel

JASG
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