No this is not a post about a Roman general called “Vicarious”, though it does sound like one.
Vicarious is a word which means “taking the place of” someone or something else.
I just finished reading the science fiction novel “Leviathon Wakes” by James S Corey. It is, in part, about the destruction of 1.5 million people, or in fact the destruction of 1.5 million human bodies and yet the continuation of their essence, soul, mind or consciousness in another form.
So how is that vicarious, or in any way relevant to today?
You may believe, as I do, that human consciousness and societal interaction continues after death. Most people have a belief or awareness regarding what happens when our body dies.
- Some believe that the fact we are remembered is itself a continuation.
- Some believe that we will be reborn, reunited with our body in some way.
- Some believe that our consciousness can be reincarnated or come back in another form.
Don’t worry, I am not trying to convince you what to believe. When I was young I did think I could convince others to believe in something, but now I just put ideas out there to consider, because belief for me is nowhere near as important as behaving in a kind and compassionate way.
So, going back to the story, the 1.5 million bodies were destroyed but there was a vicarious creation of something new. A single entity which contained all the consciousness of all the people consumed.
After reading that I wondered if that is actually an option with respect to what happens after our body reverts to atoms rather than cells? And I think it is a legitimate possibility. Perhaps I do continue in another form that takes the place of what I identify with as an individual.
So I invite you to open your mind to that possibility, so that I can expand on the idea.
If the essence of who I am is absorbed by some holistic cosmic event, then the experiences of my life would by definition be retained in that form. As I know that my body will die, this is very reassuring. It would mean my experiences do have meaning in the context of overall consciousness.
Interestingly such a concept incorporates possibilities for all other beliefs such as the ones I listed above. It removes the need to argue that one way is correct, which has been a constant sore in the heart of humanity and the cause of many wars.
One more step to go….
When I was a kid I believed in God. I believed that God was male, exterior to me, and all knowing and all powerful. Then I recognized and experienced suffering and death. That definition of a god of goodness did not fit for me. Gradually over time I came to accept that what holds meaning and direction in my life is love, kindness and compassion, both given and received. That was good, and so became God, source, or cosmic consciousness for me. I cannot know if that is true, but it is my source of joy and peace.
If I combine the two concepts, that our experiences are merged into cosmic consciousness, it brings yet another way of observing my spiritual, metaphysical self. Every experience while in my body (note, I did not say every thought I had, just how I experience it) could become part of an unknowable but meaningful presence. In adopting this acceptance, time, existence in my body, and death have much less impact.
Many people have written about the “Power of Now” – living and cherishing both pain and joy as part of the pallet of colors that make up humanity.
Please consider the “Experience of Now” as a really powerful motivator to reject the concept of suffering in favor of the concept of your life creating an eternal cellular memory cell of experience which is precious.
I like the idea of a cosmic consciousness of love vicariously absorbing my cell.