Cosmic Field of Play: 1

by Christopher Lovejoy on January 15, 2017

am I . . . free . . . to be clear to explore
what I really desire, as I follow my bliss
with equanimity, in harmony with unity?

am I . . . free . . . to be pure to cultivate
intimate contact with desire, as I express
love in exuberance, in harmony with unity?

The Era of Golden Consciousness is almost upon us, and as far as I know and can see, at this stage of the game, almost anyone is qualified enough to ask these uncommon questions, but what I would like to know is this: why do these questions even need to be posed at all?

By way of response, I would point to the Gray Zone on the Cosmic Field of Play. What is it about this gray zone that might offer significant insight into why these questions even need to be asked?

Of course, I’m getting ahead of myself here; let us start at the beginning. This post will be the first in a series of posts that builds a context of inquiry and discovery to place us into the Gray Zone.

* * *

As I began writing a series of posts on ultimate fulfillment, a series of 99 consecutive weekly posts that I published on my blog between April 6, 2014 and February 28, 2016 inclusive, I also began writing about the Cosmic Life Review, the panoramic life review that many near-death experiencers have reported after coming back to life, which inspired me to conceive of an energetic field I call “the cosmic field of play”.

On August 24, 2014, in this post, my first inklings of a cosmic field of play began to rise and take form.

More than anything, in light of my study of the Cosmic Life Review, I wanted to revisit my interest in depth psychology that took hold of me at the tender age of 16 to better understand the ego in relation to the Self as it pertains to approaching a realization of the ultimate in personal fulfillment.

Four foundational concepts arose from this study: egocentricity, pretense, abandonment, entitlement.

I knew from my extensive studies of the ego (philosophical and psychological) that it was not a black-and-white notion: on the dark side, I had encountered notions of egotism, cynical egoism, and narcissism, and on the bright side, I had entertained notions of ethical egoism.

More neutrally, and from a clinical point of view, there was also the idea of the ego as a facet of the larger Self that functioned as a regulatory agent of the Self to keep the Self anchored to reality. With a broad view, I could then see egocentricity as negative, positive, or neutral.

One feature of the Life Review that impressed me deeply was the depth and breadth of transparency evident as souls underwent reviews of their lives from birth to death, exposing intimate details of their lives with astonishing clarity, often evoking guilt or shame in the process.

This got me to thinking about the role of pretense in our lives, pretending to be someone we’re not, and in my musings, I came to see a link between this role and the role of the ego as a negative, positive, or neutral agent of change and growth in life, for better or worse.

Another feature of the Life Review was the Light, or, if you prefer, the Light of Presence. In my reading of the phenomenon known as “lives between lives”, brought to light by Michael Newton in his seminal books Journey of Souls and Destiny of Souls, I began to see these two spiritual realities – the Light and a Living Presence – as intimately and inextricably bound by love in a cosmic way, on a cosmic scale.

In this light, I wondered: if Self is a multi-dimensional spiritual reality with ready access to the Light of a Living Presence, and if an experience of the ego as an agent of Self operating in a relatively denser more resistant material reality than that of Self, then what sort of description might best characterize this relationship between ego and Self? What came to mind was “abandonment” and “entitlement”.

I knew from experience that abandonment and entitlement are ambiguous, positive or negative but never neutral in connotation, depending on the context in which they are used to describe an experience. So, for example, I could be positively abandoned, or surrendered, to having a positive experience (surrendered to my breath in meditation on my way to feeling deeply at peace, for example), or I could feel negatively abandoned, or resigned, to having a negative experience (feeling resigned to having to endure an unpleasant experience like a repetitive noise, for example). On the flip side, I could either feel positively entitled to, and deserving of, a positive experience (feeling positively entitled to and deserving of a reward for a contribution that I had made), or I could feel negatively entitled to, and deserving of, a share of the recognition being given to another by someone in a position to influence the course of my life. In linking this dynamic of abandonment and entitlement with the dynamic of presence and pretense, I was able to conceptualize with cosmic intent an energetic field for the ego in relation to Self, as follows:

The reality of presence is implied by the white of the white background on this page, from which pretense can be viewed by contrast as a continuum, from light to gray to dark, and back again.

Examples …

Light pretense is evident when a child dresses up as an angel for hallowe’en, when a teen dons a favorite costume to engage in cosplay to explore and expand possibilities of heroic expression, or when an adult plays at being a patient for the benefit of doctors-in-training.

Where dark pretense is evident when attempts are made to deceive, seduce, manipulate, or exploit innocent or vulnerable persons (or be deceived, seduced, manipulated, or exploited), gray pretense is evident when “little gray lies” are told to “keep things moving forward”.

In a fast-paced, time-crunched world, we don’t always have the time to explain, and we don’t always have the patience to empathize or to “forgive and forget”, and we don’t always have the energy to share our knowledge and wisdom – or to extend our love and compassion.

From a cosmic viewpoint, in the light of the cosmic life review, these common examples illustrate an ever dynamic field of human pretense against a backdrop of divine presence. The next piece to the puzzle is found in transcending this field by viewing all pretense as play.

Admittedly, accepting this last point is quite a stretch for most people, even for me. Obviously, it is easy enough to see light pretense as play, but what of gray pretense, or even dark pretense?

To this day, I am still unnerved on occasion by those who pretend grayly or darkly in relation to my person, but in taking responsibility for these unnerving experiences, I am coming to a fuller realization of my own contribution to having them appear in my experience, however small that might be (vis à vis this potent reminder from Wayne Dyer: “how people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours”).

Stepping back to witness gray and dark pretense from a cosmic perspective has also helped me to come to terms with them. In this light, I am reassured by these points of view: people have their own reasons for engaging in gray or dark pretense, for reasons that may be (a) valid for them, and (b) have absolutely nothing to do with me. In other words, I am in no position to judge anyone I know – for all I know, someone may have made a pre-birth contractual agreement with another soul to engage in gray or dark pretense as part of a greater learning experience that spans days, weeks, months, years, or even lifetimes, and for all I know, this someone could be involved in the delicate matter of balancing a karma debt from a previous lifetime (either by assuming the role of doing the balancing or being balanced).

So again, “the next piece to the puzzle is found in transcending this field by viewing all pretense as play.”

In viewing all pretense as play, I acknowledge my own contribution to the appearance of gray and dark pretense in my experience, in my relations with others. In treating all pretense as play, I do so from an informed cosmic perspective that respects the rights of others to learn and grow as they see fit. In saying this, my conception of the cosmic energetic field as a cosmic field of play begins to make more sense.

You may not be ready to view and treat all pretense as play, and this is fine; I respect that. For myself, I find that doing so is a stimulus for my learning and a catalyst for my growth as a person.

So where do we go from here?

Another Working Assumption: “There is No Escaping the Cosmic Field of Play”

In referencing the principle of Kala on the Huna Path, I say this: there are no limits, with this one exception: there is no escape from the cosmic field of play as I have been guided to conceive it.

Because presence and pretense are integral to who we are as conscious beings, and because egocentricity (positive, negative, neutral) is integral to having an experience in this dense material reality in which we find ourselves, “there is no escaping the cosmic field of play”.

True, I can transcend it with and from a witness perspective, to better observe it, to better understand its relevance, to better appreciate its significance, but I can never, ever escape, once and for all, from its pervasive influence on my person as a spiritual being in human form.

In other words, tapping into existentialist sentiment for a moment: “there is no exit.”

Finding a Place on the Cosmic Field of Play in Relation to Others

With this working assumption, let us survey this field more deeply and broadly.

Ideally, for someone who is encountering and entering the cosmic field of play for the first time, the most favorable placement on this field, in my view, is at the center of what I call the Love Zone, whose red border serves to delineate a space characterized by light pretense and light gray pretense. The green solar object is symbolic of a radiating Self whose egoic core is green, which is representative of peaceful intentions.

From this vantage point, in actual practice, in real life so to speak, the ego of this Self has observational access to a fairly broad range of pretentious conduct in itself and others. The ego also has a few choices with respect to its ascension on the field of play. As the ego ascends on the field into the Light of a Living Presence, it can either abandon or surrender itself positively to the nourishing quality of Presence (“be here now”), entitle itself positively to accessing the potential of Presence to release timely knowledge and wisdom (“know thyself”), or find middle ground between complete abandonment and complete entitlement by tapping the potential of Presence to guide right conduct and behavior.

Incidentally, note also the italicized emphasis on abandonment and entitlement with respect to egocentricity, which implies that we cannot ever escape from egocentricity on this field of play (this is another way of saying we cannot escape the field of play); we can transcend it for a time, in a fixed position marked by complete abandonment or entitlement, but we cannot forever escape its influence on our thinking and feeling, our conduct and behavior. Because of this, we might do well to cultivate a positive egocentricity, or at least a neutral functional egocentricity.

Operating mostly in the Love Zone is ideal for the beginner because it gives the ego of the beginner time and space to consolidate its power in the light of truth, love, and wisdom before descending on the field of play to investigate the field potential further, to expand the ego’s purview of the Light by way of contrast.

The Ultimate Prize for the Ego: A Living Spirit in Harmony with a Loving Soul

Much can be said about the distinctive nature and meaning of soul and spirit in relation to each other and in relation to the ego. In my Ultimate Outline, I listed many distinctions between soul and spirit to give the ego a frame of reference by which to identify with one or the other.

Here, I reproduce them here for ease of reference:

soul spirit

unity harmony
peace bliss
love joy
grace ease
being becoming
loving caring
intimacy ecstasy
quality vitality
encounter experience
sacred divine
promise possibility
realization evolution
truth wisdom
responsibility freedom
depth height
inward outward
descend ascend
contemplation evaluation
involvement engagement
satisfaction fulfillment
cultivation celebration
dwelling peacefully flowing blissfully
heart of soul mind of spirit
contains conveys
accepts expects
let it be make it so
receptive assertive
attuned to what is required aligned with what is desired
dignity integrity
enlightenment empowerment
being alive being alive

The ego contains or carries the potential to access any point of the cosmic field of play, having ready access to the heart of soul as and when it occupies the left half of the field, while having ready access to the mind of spirit as and when it occupies the right half of the field.

The ego, at all times in all places, can choose to abandon or surrender itself, positively and consciously, to the heart of soul in the Light of a Loving Presence, even as the ego, at all times in all places, can choose to entitle itself to tap, constructively and creatively, the mind of spirit in the Light of a Living Presence, and in so doing, can assume one of two roles: as an usurper, it can be conditioned to absorb the energy of spirit into itself, to entitle itself exclusively as a separate entity inside a bubble reality, isolating itself from Self and Other, or it can condition itself to contemplate and mediate the energies of soul and spirit to find blissful harmony with peaceful unity by learning to bear well the burdens of pride, presumption, prejudice, and pretense in a mature way, in a way that is responsive and responsible to others.

Aside: I wrote extensively on this point in a document I wrote called Coming to Terms (pages 19-30)

By identifying the ego as mediator, I was able to find myself guided to pose these two riddles:

If the soul be full
and the spirit filling,
what is fulfilling?

And if this or that
should prove fulfilling,
ultimately fulfilling?

Allow me to elaborate beyond this poetic license.

In terms favorable to the heart of soul and the mind of spirit, what is fulfilling to the ego? And if anything should prove to be fulfilling, can this fulfillment be immediately construed as ultimately fulfilling in the moment in which it is fulfilled? Or is there something more to be fulfilled?

In my most recent post, Baseline Equanimity, I was guided to reference the seven energy chakras to create what I call “the arrowhead of ascension”, an index of fulfillment by which to gauge fulfillment on all dimensions – impersonal, personal, interpersonal, and transpersonal.

I invite you to peruse this index to contemplate the riddles given above.

In the meantime, I still have a ways to go before I can speak intelligently to the all-pervasive influence of the Gray Zone on why the questions posed at the beginning of this post need to be asked, but I trust that this post lays a bit of groundwork for moving ever closer to doing so.

This post has been filed under Context in the Ultimate Outline.

Note: my evolving outline on approaching a realization of the ultimate in personal fulfillment can be found here, accessible from the nav menu under the page “Be Here Now”.

Note: this ever growing perspective began here: Ultimate Perspective

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