Phenomenology and Geber's "mysticism"

(pg. 284) “The term “irruption” signifies both the intrusion as well as the collapse of time for our consciousness.”

The Irruption of Time is my favorite chapter. And, it’s just because I’ve had “altered” non-drug state experiences that, as Bonnitta said Thurs. night, are only “altered” from a particularly implied “normal” state. (p. 285) Gebser says as much: perspectival time is a system of measurement between two moments. “The fact that we today still think in terms of the spatial, fixed, 3-D world of conceptuality is an obstacle to our realization of the more complex significance of the phenomenon. Anyone who dares to venture such a realization is accused of terminological obfuscation. But this should not prevent us from stating that time as a reality encompasses still other essential forms of appearances which are proper to it alone and not to space.”

I imagine we’ve all had what I call “state” experiences (implied other - more normal state), in which we have some aha moment or some profound really, real realization that “Time is a lie.” This is just to say that time can only add up after the fact… and it’s in the storying even though we also know that it never really ever does add up.

(p. 22) "Contemporary man looks for time, albeit mostly in the wrong place, despite or indeed because of his lack of time: and this is precisely his tragedy, that he spatializes time and seeks to locate it “somewhere.” So, it has always piqued me (envy maybe) that spiritual folk have what they call a non-dual state experience and feel free to write an entire book about it. Because, whenever I have what I would later call a non-dual state experience, I’ve never been able to write about it beyond how I am doing it here. This is because NOTHING’s ever there. Like Gebser says - there was never a “somewhere.”

So, that was kinda sorta where I was going Thurs. night bookclub, but wasn’t able to coherently put the question together at the “time.”

Consequently, because of Gebser, I’m seeing altered states as irruptions of time and even though he doesn’t word it as such… as in specifically talk about states of consciousness as in phenomenological states as experienced, I suspect the man is a “stater” and (non-stater), and it’s probably why at times he comes across to me as mystical, and maybe also why Spiral Dynamics and AQAL (not always… but…) models feel like a modern interpretation of mythic and magic and not mythical or magical at all.

3 Likes

Yes, Karen, I found myself saying to a friend, I know the experience but there’s nothing that can be said. No words match the experience. But I’m not sure that there’s nothing there. Nothing that relates to what we already know or can explain, express, articulate perhaps! Or is it all just wishful thinking?

3 Likes

Most people want to write about the content of the state, and have trouble talking about the structure and origin that’s generating it. This is why I think we find Gebser’s writing so attractive. It’s giving us a language to talk about the container, regardless of the shifting (and uniquely personal) details of the contents. my 2 sense. :wink:

3 Likes

Marie-Louise von Franz would say that speaking about the ineffable is not even possible, and to try to do so is foolish.
(and yet. we try anyway.)
mythopoetic language (symbolic language) is the means for expressing the inexpressible.

1 Like

Marie-Louise von Franz. I don’t know that name. Will google. Thanks.

1 Like

I like the way Gebser talks about time as an “intensity” as a quality of the world, a “world constituent.” Matter is irrupting out of timelessness all around us constantly and we a part of it and if that isn’t intense I don’t know what could be. Taken out of any sequence or chain of events perspective, its just the quality of origin when we come to recognize it through integral consciousness. Which isn’t an altered state (which would be like tuning to another channel) but a realization of another dimension of consciousness that defeats the deficient mental/rational and allows us, as Gebser put it, to escape the prison of our three dimensional conceptual world. Sometimes I stop and feel the intensity and its like eternity is peeking at me though the surface of the world.

3 Likes

As we find right at the end of chapter 12 ‘In truth we ware the whole and the whole wares us.’ Thes experiences are 'back leaps into 'the already (ever-)present origin’p530._

Whoops! The already ever- present future"

1 Like