There is a tradition in our western culture, that regards the best world as a world in which everything is determined, foreordained, destined, tightly managed and controlled and nothing is left to chance. I am quite aware these days, especially living in Germany where that tradition is quite strong and that there are hidden consequences in having become dependent on this tradition. It is a way that has been adopted that has historical and cultural determinants that perpetuate an exclusive way of becoming, oriented to a subject/object-existence. Don Cupitt writes about those days that the focus of religious thought was a more universal influence and involved a belief in an objective purpose and plan in life and as well as a strenuously moralistic and disciplinary work ethic. This was extended to the common people and non believers as well. It is a way that in the past has ensured our place in the world and in life pursuing a relative sense of certainty and security and it remains an influence on our thinking in general. But in that conditioning that involves striving to become secure and certain, there has been something that has been lost in the living of life.
The world goes on beyond that place, time and space of that focused search for something more secure. What we miss in our unquestioned assumptions about life and in our focused way of perceiving, has vast implications. In coming to value the awareness that arises from sitting in silence and coming to see beyond my cultural conditioning and habitual way of becoming that arises from that, there is a clarity in understanding of how my cognitive tendencies have been conditioned and are compromised in this way that pursues dominion over life. Our conditioning is not oriented to seeing the whole.
In silence there is a clarity in seeing what arises from within and what it is that we are connected to and that which is the essence of what we are. We can see in this direct way, that does not involve concepts, that life is in a constant state of birth and decay and that there is a continual high-speed feather light transformation of all things that is occurring that is part of that and that all things are interconnected. Our perception of selective aspects is relaxed and our assumptions of the separateness fall away as we see that the pieces are not isolated from other pieces. This essence of the whole and of our examination of individual pieces can not be measured, understood or realized in an absolute way through a conditioned way of perception. Cupitt goes on to write about the worthwhile step of abandoning that conditioning and that “what the last generation feared as ” meaninglessness” begins to look magical. We begin to believe in the graciousness of pure gratuitousness and happiness of mere hap.”