December 11, 2019 at 6:39 pm #8810
I am trying to understand the difference between the four experiences of sleep, deep sleep, anesthesia (or coma) & death. My current understanding (or misunderstanding) is as follows.
In the stage of sleep, the intelligence is asleep, whereas the mind is still active, free to roam w/o the intelligence exerting control over it. The “screen” can change from one “channel” to another, influenced by input from both the conscious & unconscious mind.
In the stage of deep sleep, even the mind is not active. However, there is still a sense of being conscious, but there’s no subject matter to be conscious of—the screen is blank. One awakens from deep sleep feeling refreshed & acknowledges they‘ve peacefully slept—they’re conscious of the peacefulness & are aware that time has passed. If there is some external disturbance, such as a knife cutting one’s body, the deep sleeper will be aroused.
Under anesthesia, there doesn’t appear to be even a sense of consciousness present. That is, consciousness seems to be disconnected from the subtle & gross bodily apparatus. If there is some external disturbance, such as a surgical knife cutting one’s body, the patient is unaroused. Upon waking from anesthesia, the patient does not feel refreshed or acknowledge a peaceful passage of time, or anything for that matter. Rather than the screen being blank (& the observer watching a peaceful blankness), the screen seems to be absent altogether! Same goes for the comatose condition, apparently.
[At least that has been my experience…as a youth, I twice experienced full anesthesia & twice a serious head concussion (much like a coma, really). In all four cases, upon awaking, I had no recollections & no feeling that I had peacefully slept deeply. Nor could I determine whether time had passed.]
Death (or the time until rebirth occurs) differs from anesthesia or coma in that one’s forced to move on to another body/lifetime—one can’t continue to observe the current virtual reality they are tuned in to.
I ask this question because even devotees who have practiced sadhana for decades say they’ve experienced that there’s only a blank or void & not any spiritual visions or feelings during anesthesia or other instances of “unconsciousness.” It makes me wonder where the Krishna consciousness is that’s hopefully going to carry us to a higher destination after death.
December 12, 2019 at 2:50 am #8813Ashish DalelaKeymaster
- This topic was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by Ashish Dalela.
Krishna consciousness is not any of these states. It is completely different. The soul is situated in the middle of the chest. If divine consciousness arises even for a moment, it feels like an electric current in the heart. You can trade your entire life for one moment of that. I can’t say more.
We should try to develop the love of Krishna. Love means when you think of Krishna there is a surge of very complex emotions. There is excitement, humility, desperation, craving, simultaneously. This is the abhasa or preliminary stage. This emotional stage is also called bhava.
And all this will happen automatically if simply develop the urge to listen to the holy name. Prabhupada has given the perfect formula. But it cannot be realized by words and theories. We have to experience it, feel it. Once we experience it, then lots of words will make sense.December 12, 2019 at 3:17 am #8814
Thank you. Yes, I actually understand & accept what you wrote. Sorry, I think I worded my question incorrectly, causing it to be misunderstood.
What I mean is—We are either conscious of matter or spirit. If someone is unconscious, as in a coma or under anesthesia, they have no awareness of matter—they don’t perceive a knife cutting their body, they have no dreams, they perceive (apparently) absolutely nothing. They’re also (apparently) not perceiving anything spiritual, such as Krishna. So they’re in a limbo state? A void? Or is that blankness which they’re perceiving simply the state of the atma which has yet to actually develop Krishna consciousness & a spiritual body?
IOW, if we strip away all material awareness (as in a coma/anesthesia) & discover that we’re left w/ blankness, does this show us that we’re nowhere in Krishna consciousness? Would a fully self-realized, Krishna conscious soul perceive Krishna or blankness if all material awareness were stripped away?December 12, 2019 at 5:28 am #8815Ashish DalelaKeymaster
IOW, if we strip away all material awareness (as in a coma/anesthesia) & discover that we’re left w/ blankness, does this show us that we’re nowhere in Krishna consciousness?
Yes, we are nowhere in Krishna consciousness if we depend on matter for experience.
Would a fully self-realized, Krishna conscious soul perceive Krishna or blankness if all material awareness were stripped away?
The self-realized soul experiences Krishna even when the world is there. If the world is not there, then Krishna is still there.
December 12, 2019 at 12:12 pm #8817
- This reply was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by Ashish Dalela.
Thank you. I believe this satisfies my concern. If I’ve understood correctly, real Krishna consciousness is on the level of consciousness, not merely on the intellectual, mental or physical levels. So if one is in a state where these lower levels are unengaged, such as under anesthesia, & one is not experiencing Krishna, then that is proof that their Krishna “consciousness” is only “skin deep.” A siddha would experience Krishna even under anesthesia. I hope I’ve understood properly.
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