October 26, 2017

The Spirituality of Brain Functioning.


When your mind and heart are truly open abundance will flow to you effortlessly and easily.


You may have heard of Jill Bolte Taylor’s book Stroke of Insight, which is about the stroke she had that temporarily disabled the left side of her brain.  During this time, she was imbalanced towards the right hemisphere, and experienced herself as vast, boundless consciousness.  She also found it difficult to make practical life decisions such as using the phone to contact 911.

My understanding is that the left brain is more the logical mind and the right brain is the intuitive mind.  What I am trying to grasp is the relationship between the limited form of the brain and unlimited consciousness.  I thought accessing the vastness of consciousness was about going beyond the brain (right or left hemisphere) rather than having imbalanced access to the right side. 

 Can you please clarify what is the role of the brain in relationship to universal consciousness?  And am I correct in saying the left brain is the logical mind and the right brain is the intuitive mind?  Or is mind and brain different.


When we have an experience of unlimited consciousness, our brain is still active, so having a spiritual experience is not strictly about going beyond the brain. At the same time, enlightenment is not simply a matter of shutting down the “bad” left hemisphere and using the “good” right hemisphere either, or else we would have many more saints among us. The experience of non-local awareness requires a highly operational style of brain functioning in which a unitary experience of oneself and the object of experience can be maintained even in the midst of sensory perception.

 I think in Ms. Taylor’s experience, the physical impact of the stroke in her left brain dramatically activated this style of brain functioning and allowing her to have her universal realization in consciousness. Because the left brain activity is  more concerned with linear, verbal, logical processing and the right brain with non-verbal, intuitive, holistic processing, it has become a kind of simple shorthand to make the right brain spiritual and the left brain our prosaic earth-bound ego. But it’s not that simple. Unlimited is our essential nature, and our mind, body, brain and all our experiences are fluctuations and modifications of that unbounded consciousness. We can say that an experience of this wholeness needs the harmoniously functioning unity of all the parts of our brain with their distinct forms and structure, but . Without the definition and distinction of all the various parts of relative experience that our linear mind gives us, the experience of unity consciousness would be an impractical  state of incoherent mush. So unity without an integral structure or diversity is not much good.

And we know that awareness that is  limited to separation and sensory differences leaves us in a state of ignorance of our true self. Through meditation, we cultivate the style of brain functioning that allows the identity of our self with the cosmos to become stronger until that unity dominates all our limited sensory experiences.



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