Hi @robin , yes, it makes sense, thank you for describing the background of your prior pondering, you really have a wonderful gift of storytelling. I so much enjoy reading from you! 🙂
Here are my thoughts about this:
We are talking about different stages of realization. What you describe is something that exists in many other traditions, namely a path to realization. On the path, there is a responsibility to bring the pieces back together, to uplift and to direct oneself toward unity. In the Vedic tradition this would correspond to the term dharma, the proper path for every person, and also, the Vedas through Ayurveda, Yoga and all the other branches are actually a huge body of knowledge of how to harmonize, refine and uplift the physical and mental in order to facilitate realization of pure consciousness.
But this is all about the stage where one is still separate and is striving towards unity.
What the 11 Laws of Reality presented by Deepak do, is describe reality as it is when realization is complete, describe absolute truth. This is Vedanta, the end of knowledge, this is what the sages have described as the view from the top, when one has arrived. Deepak has put it in clear, succinct modern terms relevant to our time and age.
So what is the difference between the view from the path while one is climbing, and the view from the top of the mountain? The difference is huge. On the path, one is just one of many, tucked into a particular family, community, society, into a particular species and galaxy. One has the responsibility to keep going, keep evolving, keep advancing, keep waking up. One has the responsibility to act- either uplift and do good, or on the contrary, push down and destroy, and then experience the effects of those actions (karma). One has free will, but not really, for it is impossible to truly discern what the effects of any actions will be. At any moment, a new situation can arise, which doesn’t seem in any way related to anything one has done. Of course one has responsibility, both spiritually and socially, to bring good to the whole, in order to experience a good life. But what that good is exactly can be debated 🙂
From the top of the mountain on the other hand, all of this is irrelevant. It is like waking up from a vivid dream you had, realizing that all characters in the dream were you, that all the actions played out were yours, that all the stories, points of view, all the dangers, rescues, all the unfairness or justice, all the relationship dramas, the catastrophes and technological wonders, all of it, with no exception, were in awareness, created by awareness out of nothing other than awareness. Is there any responsibility to do anything, when you have woken up from the dream? The light is completely whole, it is no longer imagining itself to be scattered. The term community has no meaning anymore, other than as a construct, a mental creation in awareness. There are obviously not many, only the one awareness. The many are dreamed aspects of the one. Does one have responsibility to dream in a particular way? No. One has completely free choice of what to dream, and of course dreams of heaven are more pleasant than dreams of hell, but… how would there be heaven if there was no hell? How would the one know the experience of pleasure if there wasn’t an experience of suffering? The light, when it is complete, includes even darkness. It is no longer contrasted to anything, it contains all contrasts. Ignorance as well as knowledge.
The story you told us, Robin, of God pulling back so we can be, could be translated as pure consciousness forgetting its undivided being in order to give rise to the dream of being many. Being forgets it is the only reality and imagines it is being this or that. I am using the word forget but we could say “covers its wholeness”, “ignores its real nature”, “pretends to be split” or “plays out a multitude of stories”. We can say any number of things, but reality is and remains the same: God/pure consciousness is never absent, absence is still just a concept, an imagined experience within God/pure consciousness.
The 11 laws we are contemplating here together are shaking up the sleeping/dreaming consciousness and affirming reality as it actually is. We are not many in community, we are one dreaming of many in community. There can’t be a law of community after awakening, for the community is just one more concept/experience in the undivided consciousness.
I think this is what @monicpaul was hinting to (correct me if I’m wrong, Monic) when she said that we don’t need to analyze the laws, they are simply here. What these laws describe is already reality. We don’t need to make them happen, we just need to realize that’s how it already is.
I wonder, Robin, if your question is more about how one behaves after realization, if there is any characteristic of action in community/society (I am not using the term responsibility as it is not relevant anymore, as I tried to explain before). Does the awakened consciousness behave differently?
If that’s what you mean, then I agree that it is something that would be great to include in a description of the view from the top. When you have woken up from the dream of multitude/separation, you are free of all the crazyness that causes turbulence- you are no longer afraid, no longer angry or jealous, you have no cravings and addictions, you are no longer functioning that way, because you are not dreaming of being a fragment anymore. You function in a healthy (=wholistic) way, out of love (= unity) and whatever you do contributes to healing because it is wholeness itself that expresses itself. So that comes naturally. Wherever you look you see yourself, so fighting, fearing or manipulating that self would be as illogical and absurd as fighting, fearing or manipulating your own toe. If you want another experience, you simply shift experience, you shift the dream. You dream with full awareness about it being your dream, the whole dream and nothing but the dream 🙂
So maybe it is more clear now why I think this needs to be re-phrased from the view at the top, which is what the laws describe. How would you phrase this, Robin, if you go all the way up (out of the dream)? Anyone else who wants to chime in on this?