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Selected Writings on Pure Consciousness Experiences



Onsets of a PCE



Related Links

Affective Experiences vs.
Pure Experiences

Descriptions of PCEs


Discussions about Pure Consciousness Experiences

Audio-taped Dialogue

Richard | 2 | 3 | 4 |

Peter | 2 | 3 |

Vineeto | 2 | 3 |


Related Questions/Objections

What is Consciousness?

What is the Identity?

What is Apperception?

Difference between Apperception and Choiceless Awareness?

Difference between
Reality and Actuality?

How Do I Induce a PCE?

Is a PCE Necessary for Practicing Actualism?

Apperception just another Identification

Feelings are Actual

‘I’ Cannot get rid of ‘Me’

Clones of Richard

Not the First to be Free

A PCE is not Universal

Actualism is not New

Empty Promises

Pure Consciousness Experience

Pure Consciousness Event: During meditation (...) one may become utterly silent inside, as though in a gap between thoughts, where one becomes completely perception- and thought-free. One neither thinks nor perceives any mental or sensory content. Yet, despite this suspension of content, one emerges from such events confident that one had remained awake inside, fully conscious. This experience, which has been called the pure consciousness event, or PCE, has been identified in virtually every tradition. Though PCEs typically happen to any single individual only occasionally, they are quite regular for some practitioners. The pure consciousness event may be defined as a wakeful but contentless (non-intentional) consciousness. Robert Forman

Pure Consciousness Experience: Mr. Robert Forman, on page 131 of the ‘Journal of Consciousness Studies’, Volume 5, Issue 2, 1998, (in a paper called ‘What Does Mysticism Have To Teach Us About Consciousness?’), described the introversive ASC [altered state of consciousness] as a pure consciousness event so as to emphasise the absence of any experienced object – it is pure subjectivity in other words – which is also why such terminology as ‘Consciousness Without An Object’ is used to describe the totally senseless and thoughtless trance state known as ‘dhyana’ in Sanskrit (Hinduism) and as ‘jhana’ in Pali (Buddhism). In the West such a state can only be described as catalepsy [a condition of trance or seizure with loss of sensation or consciousness and abnormal maintenance of posture] and a never-ending ‘dhyana’ or ‘jhana’ would result in the body wasting away until its inevitable physical death ... as a means of obtaining peace-on-earth it is completely useless. When I first came onto the internet in 1997 I subscribed for a while to an academic consciousness studies mailing list associated with the ‘Journal of Consciousness Studies’ and it was there I first heard of the phrase ‘pure consciousness event’ – with the emphasis that there be no experiencing in such a state – and thus chose the phrase ‘pure consciousness experience’ so as to make the generic phrase ‘peak experience’ I had been using for eleven years more specific and to regain the actual purity of the unadulterated sensuous experience of consciousness without a subject (a body sans identity) from the adulterated mystical experience of consciousness without an object (an identity sans body). Richard

Richard: A PCE is when one’s sense of identity temporarily vacates the throne and apperception occurs. Apperception is the mind’s perception of itself … it is a pure awareness . Normally the mind perceives through the senses and sorts the data received according to its predilection; but the mind itself remains unperceived ... it is taken to be unknowable. Apperception is when the ‘thinker’ and the ‘feeler’ is not and an unmediated awareness occurs. The pure consciousness experience is as if one has eyes in the back of one’s head; there is a three hundred and sixty degree awareness and all is self-evidently clear.

This is knowing by direct experience, unmoderated by any ‘self’ whatsoever. One is able to see that ‘I’ and ‘me’ have been standing in the way of the perfection and purity that is the essential character of this moment of being here becoming apparent. Here a solid and irrefutable native intelligence can operate freely because the ‘thinker’ and the ‘feeler’ is in abeyance. One is the universe ’s experience of itself as a human being ... after all, the very stuff this body is made of is the very stuff of the universe. There is no ‘outside’ to the perfection of the universe to come from; one only thought and felt that one was a separate identity.

Apperception is something that brings the facticity born out of a direct experience of the actual . Then what one is (‘what’ not ‘who’) is these sense organs in operation: this seeing is me, this hearing is me, this tasting is me, this touching is me, this smelling is me, and this thinking is me. Whereas ‘I’, the identity, am inside the body: looking out through ‘my’ eyes as if looking out through a window, listening through ‘my’ ears as if they were microphones, tasting through ‘my’ tongue, touching through ‘my’ skin, smelling through ‘my’ nose, and thinking through ‘my’ brain. Of course ‘I’ must feel isolated, alienated, alone and lonely, for ‘I’ am cut off from the magnificence of the actual world – the world as-it-is – by ‘my’ very presence.

To get out of stuckness and induce a Pure Consciousness Experience one gets off one’s backside and does whatever one knows best to activate delight. Delight is what is humanly possible, given sufficient pure intent obtained from the felicity/ innocuity born of the pure consciousness experience, and from the position of delight, one can vitalise one’s joie de vivre by the amazement at the fun of it all ... and then one can – with sufficient abandon – become over-joyed and move into marvelling at being here and doing this business called being alive now. Then one is no longer intuitively making sense of life ... the delicious wonder of it all drives any such instinctive meaning away. Such luscious wonder fosters the innate condition of naiveté – the nourishing of which is essential if fascination in it all is to occur – and the charm of life itself easily engages dedication to peace-on-earth. Then, as one gazes intently at the world about by glancing lightly with sensuously caressing eyes, out of the corner of one’s eye comes – sweetly – the magical fairy-tale-like paradise that this verdant earth actually is ... and one is the experiencing of what is happening. But refrain from possessing it and making it your own ... or else ‘twill vanish as softly as it appeared.

When one remembers a PCE – or precipitates another – then one is well on the way to freedom ... this is what actualism is all about. Scattered along the wide and wondrous path to an actual freedom are as many PCEs as one may need ... repeated peak experiences may very well be brought about on maybe a daily basis with constant application of reflective and fascinated contemplation . In such pure contemplation, ‘I’ cease seeing and seeing takes place of its own accord. ‘I’ can never be here now in this actual world for ‘I’ am an interloper, an alien in psychic possession of the body. ‘I’ do not belong here.

All this is impossible to imagine which is why it is essential to be confident that the actual world does exist. This confidence is born out of knowing, which is derived from the PCE, and is an essential ingredient to ensure success. One does not have to generate confidence oneself – as the religions require of one with regard to their blind faith – the purity of the actual world bestows this confidence upon one. The experience of purity is a benefaction. Out of this blessing comes pure intent, which will consistently guide one through daily life, gently ushering in an increasing ease and generosity of character. With this growing magnanimity, one becomes more and more anonymous, more and more self-less. With this expanding altruism one becomes less and less self-centred, less and less egocentric. Eventually the moment comes wherein something definitive happens, physically, inside the brain and ‘I’ am nevermore.

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