We look out of our eyes and we see a flute, or a stained-glass window, and so we think we are the flute, or the stained-glass window. But we are not the instrument, but rather the breath that moves through it. Not the window, but the light that shines through it. We are not the body, but the consciousness that observes it.
If the material world is emergent, perhaps it is emerging from that which it already is; it is becoming itself. Indeed, how could it become anything other than itself? Only light can travel at the speed of light. Only consciousness can be conscious.
We think we’re the receiver—the radio, the laptop—when, in fact, we are the signal that is being received. We are the voice, not the mouth. And the voice is universal, though it varies from mouth to mouth. This is what is meant by the phrase “many parts, all one body.”
It is breath that is alive. Not dust.
“Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground
and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life,
and the man became a living being.”
I’m always trying to think of new ways of envisioning things, and I worry I’m not very good at it(!). In this case, I’ve been imagining an invisible hand. Consciousness is like an invisible hand that can only know itself—probe itself, experience itself, feel itself—through a material glove. We’re all gloves, and the gloves are unique. But the hand that fills them is the same hand.