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Sleep and consciousness

KeromeKerome Love, love is mysteryThe Continent Veteran

So do you not find it strange that our awareness, our focus, seems to disappear while sleeping. Isn’t it odd that every night we put our head on the pillow, we cease to be aware, and in the morning we awake and our awareness of being ourselves is restored? I find it rather miraculous, and mysterious.

Last night I was wakened by the sound of the wind chimes that hang here, and I remember that I was deep asleep, and as I was hearing the chimes I was rising up from the depths. I was coming from a dreamless sleep, a deep dark nothingness that was even so very comfortable. Yet I must have been somewhat aware, because the sound of the chimes penetrated into wherever I was.

Hence sleep is not nothingness, even though it does feel like that at times. Osho once said that sleep and meditation were closely related... I can see the point in that, because in deep meditation too one loses contact with the mind, much like deep sleep.

FinnTheHumanJeffreyShoshin

Comments

  • FinnTheHumanFinnTheHuman Explorer England Explorer

    In Advaita Vedanta they have the idea of Turiya- pure consciousness. There is waking consciousness- causal body, dreaming- subtle body and the state of deep dreamless sleep which is causal body. Turiya is that which underlines all the states. I guess in dreamless sleep you are nearer to the unification of subject/object, because there is no object to attach to.

  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the void Veteran

    I've been under general anesthesia, it was like I shut my eyes one moment and the very next moment I opened them and it was a day later. There was no sense of any time passing, no blackness, literally nothing.

    KeromeKundoBunksShoshin
  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    @person said:
    I've been under general anesthesia, it was like I shut my eyes one moment and the very next moment I opened them and it was a day later. There was no sense of any time passing, no blackness, literally nothing.

    Yes, I’ve experienced that, once so far. It’s very different from sleep.

  • adamcrossleyadamcrossley Veteran Veteran

    The one time I had a general anaesthetic it was the same, just nothingness. The sensation of waking up afterwards was utter bliss though, for about half an hour.

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    Hmm it reminds me of what Alan Watts said in one of his talks...

    What would it be like to go to sleep and never wake up ? Or what would it be like to have never slept ?

    It could be that when we fall asleep, consciousness goes into snooze mode...Where five of the six consciousnesses( eye ear nose tongue body) operate on the rudimentary level (basic survival alert mode) whilst the mind consciousness (the sixth) updates & reboots...This updating & rebooting may take the form of dreams or it may need to go deeper which involves turning off thoughts & imagination altogether, just leaving the other five consciousnesses operating at the rudimentary level...

    Osho once said that sleep and meditation were closely related...

    I think that this would be true only when one has lucid dreams...however both sleep & meditation do in a sense update & reboot the aggregates so to speak... :)

    lobsteradamcrossley
  • pegembarapegembara Veteran Veteran
    edited August 28

    @person said:
    I've been under general anesthesia, it was like I shut my eyes one moment and the very next moment I opened them and it was a day later. There was no sense of any time passing, no blackness, literally nothing.

    As you read these words, we can all agree that we are conscious and "alive". General anaesthesia is the closest thing to being "dead" except that one "lives" again after the anaesthetic wears off. Even the breathing stops.

    You know you are "alive/conscious" if you are still having a series of experiences. "Death" then is merely the cessation of those experience or cosmos.

    "I tell you, friend, that it is not possible by travelling to know or see or reach a far end of the cosmos where one does not take birth, age, die, pass away, or reappear. But at the same time, I tell you that there is no making an end of suffering & stress without reaching the end of the cosmos. Yet it is just within this fathom-long body, with its perception & intellect, that I declare that there is the cosmos, the origination of the cosmos, the cessation of the cosmos, and the path of practice leading to the cessation of the cosmos."

    So, truly, the wise one,
    an expert with regard to the cosmos,
    a knower of the end of the cosmos,
    having fulfilled the holy life,
    calmed,
    knowing the cosmos' end,
    doesn't long for this cosmos
    or for any other.

    https://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an04/an04.045.than.html

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