Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Veil - A Guest Blog by Mark Shapiro

There seems to be a veil that surrounds us—a very thin one. So thin, it may not exist at all. In its absence, there seems to be no significant changes in what is perceived. But there is a subtle change in how perception occurs. From the standpoint of veiled perception, everything seen is filtered through the lens of time, while non-veiled perception is taking place fully in the present. Nothing changes; only the natural perfectness of what is, is seen. How could anything be otherwise? So obvious, it’s almost silly not to see it all the time.

The desire to make things different is based on the past and the fears associated with the sense-memories of pain. Our belief system tells us that the way to avoid a recurrence of said pain is to change the future. Thus a past-future continuum is fabricated. This fabrication is the veil, which is nothing more than a belief.

The often-stated justification to this belief is the finger over the flame scenario. I learn to not place a finger over the flame because the cost would be too high. If I don’t exercise caution, similar painful things will happen. This extrapolation is not logical. The learned experience that a flame hurts doesn’t mean that everything pretty holds danger.

It is exactly this kind of fear-based extrapolation that causes prejudicial thinking and hatred in humans. To see its error, our only need is to understand its costs. In a sense, anger (justified or not) feels good. Stopping to look at the anger can be fearful, and, until the costs of the anger become apparent, the fear rules the roost. In other words, the way to overcome anger/fear is to understand, as fully as possible, what exactly am I paying for a momentary good feeling.

It is the above statement/question that begins the process of removing the veil by breaking the bond between past and future.

About Mark Shapiro: Mark was born in Los Angeles in 1948. He lived in California until he moved to Hawaii in 1991, where he currently resides. What happened during this time is of no consequence; the events are only stories.

When Mark was 8 years old, he liked watching old movies. At 65, he still likes watching old movies. On his 12th birthday, he surfed for the first time. At 13, he learned to play the tuba, which he enjoyed. He no longer plays the tuba but continues to surf.

Mark was never fond of going to school, until he went to college, where learning was fun. He was one class short of earning his degree in Radio, Television, and Film, but didn’t care because he was working in Public Television. One of the programs he produced was about car repair. He later left television and went back to school to learn auto repair. He set up a business to help people learn about automobile maintenance and diagnosis.

In 1988 he retired because of health issues. He currently drives a 1990 Toyota Corolla Wagon with a 5-speed transmission. It’s the best car he has ever owned.

- Ariel Murphy

1 comment:

  1. Having a veil seems almost an automatic reflex when we've gone through pain/adversity. Thank you Mark for dissecting what that is all about and sharing your insights about removing veils. This messenger is honored.