The Perception Trap
It is through perception that we navigate the world, but it’s also easy to forget who is navigating!
In the very first instant of perception, perception is non-conceptual. There is just seeing, hearing etc, so that we can immediately discern whether things are harmful or beneficial. When we are aware of this process and don’t create a mental narrative about whatever is seen, the mind can rest in neutrality, always prepared while remaining at peace and unconfused.
It is only when the mind relates to whatever is perceived and holds on to ‘this’ as opposed to ‘that’, that we experience disquiet and a duality is created. In relating to this intrusion, clear seeing becomes occupied. Being occupied isn’t the issue: it is being occupied constantly that causes us to be addicted to the material and mental worlds, and then we are easily led by the nose.
We can also become occupied by the habit of a routine and fall into a state of vacancy, of not knowing. This is the state of ignorance.
To be free from these perception traps, we recognise that perception is non-conceptual, and that we do not have to follow a formula. We are only bound because pure consciousness became trapped in relating, which created the relative reality that has become our norm. By merely being aware, the mind becomes free and open, and we realise that consciousness is, in fact, free from confusion. This clarity is pure consciousness, where nothing binds us.
In the state of perfect meditation, there is empty essence, empty mind, empty perception. That is our natural condition. We don’t have to sit on a cushion to realise this, but it helps.