Remembering Knowledge Through Application
(Posted on September 26, 2013 by David McMillin)
[NOTE: While serving as mentor for an online version of “A Search For God” study group and working on the Knowledge lesson, a member of the group asked about unconscious knowledge absorbed by listening to audio tapes as she fell asleep. The information would seem to be available later during waking consciousness. Here is my reply. – David McMillin]
Your question reminds me of the teachings of Socrates who believed that we already know everything at some level unconsciously, and that "learning" is actually "remembering." The Socratic method involves dialogue through a series of questions to draw out the inner knowledge that the individual already knows but has forgotten. Socrates used various metaphors for this process: A midwife assisting with the birthing of knowledge to the soul. Or a gadfly who stimulates the remembrance of truth by aggravation, like an insect that bites or stings a stubborn horse. Remember, it was Socrates who famously insisted: "Know Thyself."
The unconscious mind is always taking in information and data from the environment through the senses. That is why it is so important to choose (or construct) our environment (including all the sensory or informational data) wisely since it is being internalized as "food for the soul." And then there is the deeper layers of knowledge accumulated from past lives and planetary sojourns – deep soul knowledge.
What is knowledge … what is knowing? Is it just the accumulation of information or facts – like bits of data that get stored in a database, so that we can query the database (the unconscious mind) when we want to remember something? Or is it part of our very being because we have assimilated it by application and experience? To be sure, this is leading us into the next lesson on Wisdom, but is worth considering when reflecting on knowledge and its acquisition and storage.
Perhaps the process is more about developing the ability to get the answers that we need from within, rather than the specific information or knowledge itself. The Cayce readings insist that we can get the answer to any question by seeking within. That almost sounds Socratic, doesn't it?
The readings also insist that in the application comes the awareness. In DOING we become conscious (remember) what is true – that which has value based on our own personal experience:
But, remembering that the motivating force of all matter is the spirit thereof, then know that it depends upon the use and the application made; for in the application comes the understanding and the knowledge and that which will make for that sought by every soul. (824-1)
While doing background research for a presentation on Atlantis that I will be giving next week, I found the following excerpt in a life reading that describes an ancient gathering of peoples in Egypt who were seeking a "unification" of knowledge about the Law of One. One of the attendees got really confused about differing perspectives because he had already made up his mind about what he thought he knew to be true:
The entity then was among those peoples and those confusions that arose with the attempt to correlate the Laws of One from Egypt, Saneid, On. Through all of these the entity felt that ONE must be right, couldn't ALL be right. And this has hung as it were to the entity THROUGHOUT its experience in the body, out of the body.
ALL may be right and yet ONE right. For each in its own understanding; the one in that what ye proclaim, what ye profess, BE! That's the Law of One. If this be in error then you will find same by thy own application. Choose that thou hast experienced, do experience, that BRINGS in thy daily life, thy daily experience that ye PROFESS to believe; that ye find it is. Else ye will change of thine own self. For what is the law? "Seek and ye shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you." God is God of the living. These are as one. They are as steps, as growths. He that becomes satisfied, he that sets it down and doesn't want to see, becomes as the blind leading the blind – and will fall into the ditch. (1250-1)
Apparently this individual needed to do a little "unknowing" by putting what he thought he knew into practice – in other words, application. Then he would find out what was true for him at that point in his development.
Keep in mind that truth changes for a developing soul. In other words, "God is God of the living." It's a growth process. Seeking is one step in the process. Yes, we can study and learn. But we grow in Knowledge by living it. Thus we "remember" the truth (i.e., the pattern of Oneness with God or Christ Consciousness) that has been imprinted upon the unconscious mind, the mind of the soul. Then Knowledge has meaning and value as it is filtered and distilled through the spiritual ideal put into practice – thus Wisdom, our next lesson. Blessings, Dave
[NOTE: As a followup to the above resource, here is another reply provided while serving as mentor for an online version of “A Search For God” study group and working on the Knowledge lesson. A member with a scientific perspective of knowledge and a love of theoretical physics noticed some initial resistence to this lesson. Upon reflection he relialized that modern scientific models of physics pertain only to the physical universe and are incomplete. He commented, “My own experience tells me there’s more to reality than the physical world. I see the sin [i.e., error] in worshiping only the physical.” Part of his more expansive experience includes an awareness of past lives, self knowledge which is definitely beyond the scope of what most modern scientists accept as valid knowledge. He also noted that the “Remembering Knowledge” resource was very helpful in his new understanding of Knowledge in his Search for God. Here is my reply. – David McMillin]
… those are wonderful insights about the meaning of Knowledge in our Search for God. And you have communicated it so clearly that we can all appreciate your understanding, even if we don't have a scientific background. I have followed a similar path in my own spiritual journey, and can empathize with your initial resistance to this lesson.
When we leave the Divine out of the equation of life and nature of reality, we fall short and create some really distorted conditions in the world. And the truth is that we can explore the laws of the universe within the context of the mind of God. But we may need a new “concept of God” (as we considered in the lesson on God's Manifestation). Also, the application of Ideals is a means of “spiritualizing” the pursuit of knowledge – and many scientists have done this. We know them as much by the love and compassion (Spirit) that they manifested as by their purely scientific contributions.
Your realizations about self-knowledge through past lives fall within the scope of the “Know Thyself” lesson. And yet it is how we apply that Knowledge in our present daily life that makes the difference in soul development, as Cayce kept insisting when he gave those hundreds of life readings. And you have touched upon a deeper meaning of that early lesson as well, by recognizing the reality of the “higher self” as an aspect of the soul ENTITY that you are (as you awaken to that awareness). And that is a major theme in these lessons – to know yourself to be yourself and yet one with the Whole.
The Self that we come to know (as we Search for God) is so much more than most of us realize. It is this higher self that is becoming the equal companion and co-creator with God. You have glimpsed some of that reality. It is a bit like the prodigal son who has forgotten who he is and then remembers – like each of us as we remember our spiritual heritage through the APPLICATION OF KNOWLEDGE. Thanks for sharing. Blessings, Dave
P.S. I find the following reading excerpt especially evocative and inspiring with regard to the APPLICATION OF KNOWLEDGE (living the fruits of the spirit) which is the path to REMEMBERING KNOWLEDGE in relationship to God:
Keep the self in such a manner as to be circumspect in thine own consciousness. Be true to self, making for those activities that bear the fruits of the spirit; just being kind, just being gentle, just being patient, just showing fellowship, just showing brotherly love; just bearing witness in thy walks, thy acts, thy understandings unto thy fellow man. And ye shall know Him face to face. For He hath promised to bring to such the REMEMBRANCES from the foundations of the earth, of the world, of the universe. For thou wert in the beginning, even as He. (261-15)