Why is there no route from where we start out to the first stages of enlightenment? No path? No road or way?
We are mostly used to reasoning in a linear way: to get from A to C via B we pass through every point along the way.
But we also have some knowledge of progressions that don’t work that way.
Here’s an analogy: harmonics in musical instruments.
A guitar player can immediately demonstrate harmonics to you.
If the string is plucked near the middle, it will happily vibrate at its lowest note, its fundamental or first harmonic. If it is plucked at a different and carefully selected position, it will vibrate at a harmonic of the original note.
The second harmonic is twice the fundamental note, or the octave. Then there is the next, three times the fundamental, and the next, four, and so on for 5, 6, 7… and on theoretically without limit. But practically there IS a limit as the harmonics become less and less strong… and practically, it’s tricky to sound any harmonic without exciting to some degree all the others, especially the fundamental note – the first harmonic.
But do note well: there is no harmonic between the first and second harmonic. There’s no route or path between them. The harmonics are there or they are not.
It is simply not possible to get the string resonating at a pitch that is in between the fundamental note and the first harmonic of double that pitch.
Any attempt to get an in-between pitch can only produce a much higher harmonic and pitch.
Of course other notes can be played by shortening the string or changing its tension, and many practical instruments don’t conform exactly to this ideal case.
But there is no path from the fundamental to the first harmonic. And this can serve as a pointer as to why there is no path from where we start out looking for enlightenment to the place where we stop looking – because it is seen. Just as there is a caterpillar or there is a butterfly, there’s no viable in-between form. They are different resonances…
Back to Fundamentals
So that’s it, then — is it? That’s the key? Harmonics?
As we get more and more “spiritual” we resonate at higher and higher harmonics, it all goes up and up forever! More and more! Onward and upward!
That’s the bandwagon the false self and the human mind tend to want to leap onto: more and more excitement and activity.
But the analogy goes the other way – the Unlikely way. The analogy is the Clue.
Fundamentally – there’s One.
The first harmonic or fundamental is the lowest note. The One single underlying tone.
The second harmonic is double that, or two – perhaps, by analogy, the aware and that which it is aware of. Conscious and content.
Then the next harmonic is three times the fundamental tone – three being perhaps analogous to the one being and its two aspects, female and male, or the three gods that appear in some cults.
And so on the harmonics go, each being another division and differentiation until we end up – here. At some high level of harmonic division, a very small and short-lived tone.
In this analogy each harmonic does not replace the earlier ones, it is layered on top, adding tone and resonance and apparent complexity. And each harmonic is weaker than the previous one… and at the bottom of it all the fundamental is there, the strongest and lowest tone that is the basis for all else.
By analogy, to get back to fundamentals, we need to sense the wholeness — the underlying fundamental — under our divided selves. We need to resonate with a less complex level to sense its presence, and we can do this. We quieten ourselves and allow awareness of a lower resonance to develop…
Just get the idea… and drop it
But do note all of this is just an analogy, and an analogy pushed out a very long way — and analogies are not the fact, they’re just to help get the idea. Just see if the idea is triggered, and then drop the analogy once it has done its job…