Optics is the branch of Newtonian physics that has to do with light, its properties, propagation, and overall mechanics. Each discovery since the 1600’s has radically rocked physics and our collective view of the world; and each eureka marched us into the quantum revolution of physics that we live today. The quantum world and its undeniable information about the worlds of form has been so radical as to still not be accepted by, or even make sense to, the majority of humanity. It seems to have little or no relevance to one”s life. Yet consciousness is light, as such the revelations born of the fields of optics and thermal dynamics (the heat that light creates) are not only relevant but are pointers. Are they different than the pointing out offered by lamas, rishis, sages and saints whose insights and teachings are born of the science of meditation? No. These two branches are of one tree, the Tree of Life and Awareness.
Consciousness is light, therefore each discovery of its properties, propagation, or the mechanics of how it works can directly be applied to our spiritual nature. Doing so makes the spiritual path plain to see. The understanding gained could bring immediate results in our mind, interactions, choices in life, and therefore the karmic trail that winds its way through and largely directs our life. Here are some musings and a few examples.
Light self-propagates. It does so as the married pair of electricity and magnetism roll forward together, one exciting the other to roll again. It is an equal partnership. That equality is what keeps the speed of light constant and extremely fast. Electricity and magnetism are the first pair in cosmos, the father-mother of all that can be, be perceived, exist, or be recognized as existing. Electricity is the blink in the dark fecundity of empty space. Magnetism is empty space with nothing to attract or repulse, and it is that which recognizes the spark. Wakefulness is the result whether that is a stellar ignition on any scale or a moment of insight and awareness with its choice and decision for a person. In cosmos, that blink-spark will instantaneously cause response from always ready magnetism. The immediacy of the result is why the speed of light is so fast: it is immediate. Always the beginning of something is how it will continue (more on that another time).
Light has offspring: radiance-brightness in all its wavelengths and radiation-heat in all its presentations. This will be important as we look at consciousness.
Consciousness, too, self-propagates. It, too, has offspring. Radiance-brightness is for a long time lived as the quality of mind and the ability to register information, notice, identify and name. Something stands out from the back drop of everything else; it is brought into view. Mind becomes personal identity that picks out this or that skill or attraction or ego enhancement such that while consciousness is, without stop, moving along it is at the same time creating a brightness enamored of brightness, enamored of itself. Equally, the intensity and heat of that growing sense of self co-measures the infatuation with self-identity. We lose “sight” of the fact that we are the light, that we are the self-propagation of awareness, and that every moment is the father-mother of awareness-brilliance catalyzing. Instead, and for a long time we chase the image of our self made possible only because of awareness-light. Maybe this is part of the deeper meaning of the Narcissus myth.
Light is continuous; once self-generation is begun it does not stop. Light is absorbed, emitted, assimilated, and integrated which creates new sparks, insights, new light. This, too, is the Path. We cannot get off the Path once it has begun, but we can get lost in some sort of proverbial attention deficit disorder that is like the labyrinth in the myths of old. Chasing after one shiny object or another, following a karmic trail that had we been aware would not have been created, or encountering the dead-ends, the passageways, and the bogey-men of the mind, we wander. That’s when Ariadne’s thread is found and we are back on track. In other words, that’s when we come to our sense of light, right, whole, brilliant not just bright. Now, the thread of light that saves us also leads us as we self-propagate light from within. Now we are becoming the Path not just trying to walk it.
One last bit of musing for the day, and that is the heat that light produces. It is always so. Consider it: a light bulb, a match or fire, that which heats a pot on the stove, or the passion-enthusiasm that is created as clarity and insight spark our sense of purpose. Passion is heated, so are anger, lust, violence, and contemptuous disregard for the whole-ism that magnetism always represents and holds together. Somehow the spark can become an eruption, the insight can incite a riot or anarchy, and magnetism can express as herd, mob, and their large scale results. How does light create devastation? A star self-creating is marked by massive nuclear explosions. A moment of decision is often experienced as lightning touching ground. And we feel that even in the smallest seeming unimportant choices that actually are all decisions. And with those sparks of light are karmic connections not yet spun in the web of time are present, volatile and ready to explode into forever if we let them.
Consciousness is that something that is both electricity and magnetism. When we live one more than the other we live the results. Our self-propelling lightwave of consciousness wobbles, clunks along, lumbering over itself. We have made the error of non-equality: spark was more important that result, holding, clinging was more important than freely letting go, single self was bigger than all selves that live with us.
Of course, the flip-flop of electro-magnetism as light is also the perfection of cause-result unerring and unceasing. So much to ponder. Yet it is in the Being of it that lies our wakefulness. So much for the physics of the day!