10 The Eye Above the Pyramid

Peter Gould

Sometimes when I meditate, I feel like the eye above the pyramid on the back of a dollar bill. Have you ever noticed it? If you look up the symbolism of our dollar bill, you’ll find references to “the all-seeing eye” or “the eye of providence.” When you hold that bill in your hand and really look at it, you get a hint that there is some Secret Society out there that we’re not a member of, but controls our currency.

In my essay on my meditation style, I wrote that during a period of silence my consciousness seemed to spread out to inhabit my entire body, no longer limited to the geographical area of my brain. This surprised me. But there are routine times when we are more than routinely conscious of important parts of our mortal coil. Our awareness goes there: to our legs and feet when we run; our bowels; our sexual organs; our hands when we gesture, touch, or create; our faces when we share expressions with our fellow humans; our skin when we experience heat or cold—we concentrate upon those places either deliberately or automatically, till our general awareness returns to take up its position at its usual location within us: at our summit. Where we are right now.

When we meditate, we sit and form a pyramid–a stable posture. As the triangle is stable on paper, it is also stable in three dimensions. The pyramid is rock solid. Build it well and it will last for millennia. We form the body into a pyramidical shape in meditation, and then, we sit–our minds sit–at the summit like that floating mystical eye on the dollar.

With no physical input from the body, the eye is free to look elsewhere, even to contemplate existence itself—the greater story that surrounds us. That is when we notice that this existence is frequently defined, for us by an inner private monologue that is spontaneous, incessant, questioning, naming, memorious, uncontrollable, smart, stupid, repetitive, inappropriate, boring—however our piece of consciousness happens to behave with us at any particular time. On occasion the very existence of this private monologue can be a cause of, or the source of, our anxiety.

But if we’re lucky, we can catch another glimpse. We can begin to sense a whole other consciousness a step back from that “eye,” that “I”–removed from this monologue which in its mental way is an even greater obstacle to cosmic consciousness than the body is. There is a whole universe of energy, space, time, God, Goddess, the Force–whatever you believe–that happens to connect with you at that eye, that “I” like the tiny tip of a vast, infinite, cone–it re-funnels all the life energy you were born with when something dazzling leapt into you–when?–at conception? at three months? at birth? and all you need to do to tap into it and feel it for even a second, is to form that pyramid, rest the body, close your eyes, take the body out of the equation, and then, in breathing, quiet the inner monologue, or just ignore it and let it be, take the mind out of the equation, too. Suddenly, there IT is! Wow! Your hallelujah moment!

If you have never felt this, never even come close, that’s okay. If cosmic consciousness is not your thing, no problem. If you’d rather not keep that appointment with the divinity, that’s your prerogative. You won’t be charged.

Or, if you think yourself a failure when you find yourself constantly striving and falling short of that mythical Gold Ring of enlightenment, don’t worry about it. What you are doing when you sit is already enlightening. You are there already. I’m going to go back and put that in bold.

The least you can bring, to any situation of conflict in transformation is to be willing to sit for fifteen or twenty minutes. If you feel comfortable, invite others to sit with you. Something unexpected, something good, could happen. Maybe the broken, boring, incessant, repetitive discussion or debate that may have been going on between the injured parties could pause, take a break, and everyone in the room could be given the chance to see or hear the greater story that they have all been missing. It may be worth a try.



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The Inner Peace Outer Peace Reader Copyright © by Peter Gould & John Ungerleider is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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