There is no “us” and “them”. We are all One.
Over the course of my life, my philosophy of life has changed dramatically. I have grown from a lonely, isolated man, fearful of the world, and intimacy with others, to a man who has come to see the world as one. I have grown from a man who felt so powerless over the world, to a man who is comfortable with being powerless over the world, but with at least some control over how I choose to perceive the world.
Some of my friends have taken note of this. They have even made direct comments and assessments like, “Wow. You sound like a non-dualist, Scott.” So it seemed to me that I was on to something.
It is true, I am a non-dualist. In my mind, there is only The One. But it took me a while to get here.
I arrived at this opinion many years ago when I first read of the quantum entanglement experiments. In those experiments, scientists noticed that two particles could be “entangled”, that is, an action on one particle induced action on the other particle. The actions were measured and the speed with which action on one entangled particle influenced the other was determined to be instantaneous, irrespective of the distance involved.
Much later on, Chinese scientists performed experiments on entanglement and as a result, they estimated the speed of the interaction of entangled particles to have a lower limit of 10,000*c, with c being the speed of light. Their best explanation for this behavior is that everything is connected. This is in alignment with the teachings of Buddha, that everything is connected.
There is no “there” out there. It is all one. There is no distinction. We are all mostly unconscious of The One, though. In our daily lives, we still move about as if we are separate. We still punish others, seek to best our fellow man, and feel lonely, even though we are One.
As I became familiar with this concept, I also began to realize that it is not possible to “win” if we are all one. To win, we must assume that there is a winner and a loser. That doesn’t work out well if we’re all one.
Then I considered the ideas of punishment and revenge. I remembered reading several articles and books on the subject of quantum mechanics and recalled that there is no way to observe an experiment without influencing the outcome. In our own subtle way, our thinking can influence an experiment one way or another.
I recall the random number experiments I learned about in the extended DVD version of What The *BLEEP* Do We Know. That movie really blew my mind and I encourage anyone and everyone to watch it. The main takeaway I got from that movie is that I have a much wider range of choices in how I can respond to my environment. I get to choose how I perceive an event. But I digress.
The random number experiments were designed to show how the mind can influence the outcome of events. Starting in the late 1960s, subjects were placed in front of a screen and told that the screen would flash 0s and 1s before them. The same subjects were encouraged to think “more 1s”, to use their thinking to influence the outcome of the random numbers.
They did. Upon statistical analysis, they found a small but measurable deviation from randomness. The experiments continued as scientists set up servers to run random numbers day and night with analysis to follow. The experiments were scaled up and there were two major events that showed very large deviations from random. The few hours before the OJ Simpson verdict was read, and, the Mother of All Events, 4 hours before 9/11. The correlation was when much of human consciousness was focused on one thing.
I consider the random number experiments when I interact with technology. I know that my attitude can affect how a computer and an operating system will respond to my inputs, either through the keyboard, verbal abuse or just my thinking. So I think carefully about how I choose to interact with a computer. I am in a partnership with my computer to create something, to discover something, to put two and two together.
I began to apply my philosophy with computers to everything else. I started to become aware that the universe is, at all times, a reflection of me and everything that I am thinking and feeling. When I first started learning about computers, I heard, “garbage in, garbage out”. So I took care as to what I put into my computer. By extension, I took care as to what I put into the universe. I began to think more deeply about how I would choose to respond to the universe. I began to think of the universe as a sort of “universal processor”, always processing information.
I can recall my school days and how I would sneak out of class. I had learned that if you look at someone who doesn’t know you are there, they will intuitively know that someone is looking at them, and turn around to see you looking at them. So when I wanted to sneak out of class, I made a point of not looking at anyone. I believe that this concept is grounded in quantum entanglement. This is one more proof that we are all one.
I don’t believe in the concept of impunity. Impunity is the idea that one can act adversely on another without consequence. But the experiments I described above destroyed any possibility of impunity for anyone, anywhere. There is no such thing as impunity.
If we are all one, I cannot hurt you without hurting me. I cannot punish you without punishing myself. I cannot criticize you (a form of punishment) without criticizing myself. If you spot it, you got it. Right?
I have also noticed for the last two years how vexing problems resolved themselves. I lost $6500 to a landscaper who ran off with the money before finishing the job. I reported him to the authorities and found that he had a criminal record. We had failed to perform due diligence and paid dearly for it.
After that, my wife would check on him on Facebook. He posted pictures of a shiny new truck. But I knew by his behavior that this would not last long. A year later, that truck was on bricks, wheels gone, slowly selling off the parts. The universe was reflecting back to him what he was doing, thinking and feeling.
But I hung in there. I knew the money could be replaced. I also knew that if I messed with him in any way, well, he knew where we lived. I have long since replaced the money and more. I kept reminding myself that it is not possible to punish him without punishing myself. I minded my own business and made more money. Whatever I put into the universe came back to me.
I am this way with my wife, my kids, the customers I support at work. If they yell at me, well, they’re the ones having a bad day, not me. It’s my job to make their day go better. It’s my job to make them look good to their manager. It’s my job to make the lives of my family better than before. And all I really do is facilitate that. The universe does the rest.
I don’t worry about what I get back from anyone, anywhere. I only think of the choices I want to make and their possible outcomes. I remind myself that the universe is a reflection of everything that I’m thinking and feeling. I remind myself that just because someone is angry doesn’t mean I have to be angry, too. I am free to make these choices.
These choices are cumulative and progressive. The angrier I get, the more anger comes back to me. The more unhappy I get, the more unhappiness visits me. Over time, these reflections of anger and unhappiness become coherent and magnify with each reflection.
The same is true of happiness. I have noticed that problems tend to solve themselves. I may provide a little bit of input. I might even experience some apprehension about a problem, but for the life of me, I have no idea how they just magically solved themselves. But I have noticed that when I have an attitude that is positive, optimistic and even a bit irreverent, those problems tend to solve themselves. My choice to accept and even be happy with the way things are now, allow my consciousness to be aware of reasons to be happy. Acceptance of life tends to make my life easier, even happier. I think they call that, “gratitude” or “contentment”, something like that.
My life isn’t perfect, I still have disappointments from time to time. But I’ve made a point to find a way to be happy with what I have. I’m blind in one eye, deaf in one ear. I still like a good movie, I’m a Paul McCartney fan. I have enough for today. I let today be enough. I know that when there is a disturbance in my life, that it too shall pass, and then I can back to my baseline of happiness and contentment. I have a very low threshold for happiness.
I am mindful of my choices in how I interact with people, places and things. I have no control over them. But I do have some control over how I choose to perceive them. I perceive that the universe is not out to get me. I perceive that whatever I put in, I get out. I perceive that I can choose how I want to interpret the events around me. I perceive that I can choose to be happy or not. I perceive that we are all One.