Sitting outside a cafe near Bond Street in London, sipping coffee and observing the bustle around me with awe and envy I was intuitively led to think about the bounties and marvels of human life. This prompted me to ask what life is. As for me, I am and life is! I am a physical entity as well as a spiritual virtuality. Physically I may have unique facial contours, finger prints or iris’ signatures, but as a human being I am one among billions. I have been neither a superstar nor a creative icon to carve out a name of indelible fame. Intellectually and spiritually I am uniquely indescribable and people can know only that minuscule slice of me which I express or exhibit at any moment. Nothing including me can fathom the nooks and crannies of my mind which, even in its relative emptiness, is truly limitless.
There are millions of ways and modes that I can be in myself by myself! There is a universe in me like there is a universe around me. The universe around me is physically infinite in space and in the future of time but the universe in me is infinite in infinite ways. Is the universe around me a greater marvel of nature or the one in me the ultimate marvel of soft and hard reality? The universe around me has been expanding for 14.7 billion years to attain the present extent but the universe in my mind can connect infinitely distant ideas instantaneously! Sometimes I have an illusion that what I see around me is what my mind itself visualizes and that there is only one universe that is inside of me and the one outside is only a virtual illusion. In that sense it is my observation that creates the outside reality. Was that to be true thence all there is the human mind! There can be no more or even less!
Look at the child in me that may be the father of a man, the elderly in me that symbolizes wisdom and maturity. Those are not in separate selves as much of marvels as when I am a child and old both at the same time or what if I am millions of virtual beings at the same time? Each of those beings may need millions of words to describe and define!
What truly is then limitless around me is me myself. What is in me is what connotes infinity. Is it the physical side of my brain, which remains the last frontier to fathom in its own right, or the virtual side of my mind that assumes the dimensions that human imaginations can boundlessly map? In the spirituality of mind I am unique and limitless. If my mind with all its limitless capacities is unable to describe myself then no one else can.
Human being truly is the ultimate marvel of nature and will remain the last frontier to fathom and comprehend. If I were to simulate myself I could compare me with the infinite views of a look of me near me, away from me, above me, below me, inside of me, outside of me, beyond me and so on ad nauseam. Who after all am I? In long and short, I am me that cannot be defined or bound in words, pictures, views and type sets. The only way that I could define and describe myself is ME! These two letters describe the greatest and biggest that exists in virtual or physical reality that there is and that there can ever be! And that is what I am. On one hand I am sipping coffee and on the other hand I am a thought floating in limitless space, a view of the outside world and a view of the inner eye creating a greater marvel than that created by parallel universes which may exist without intersecting each other but my universes intersect and coexist with each other in time as well as in space. The parallel universes are an interplay of gravity but my universes encompass gravity as one of their myriad dimensions in them whether folded or open. The physical universes around me are expanding with increasing speed but the universes in me are not bound by space or time and are instantaneous and pervasive.
Einstein's law may limit motion beyond the speed of light in the outer universe but super luminal motion is no limit for the universe in me. Laws of physics may break down at mathematical singularities like that of black hole in the outer universes but the breaking of laws in a singularity breaks down as the very singularity is no singularity in my internal universe which floats in a limitless continuum! In it time, space, motion, virtual and real assume seamless connections with past, present and future at the same moment. I am past, present and future at the same seamless time. I can eat, play, cry, live, imagine, see, and do all that at one conscious time. When I consciously switch my inner being off and go to sleep so does the ultimate marvel in me of simultaneity of infinite possibilities goes to sleep. That is the only time that I go in a limited mode of blood and flesh. As I wake up what I become I cannot and no one else either can describe. I am when I am.
Biologically speaking, there are some 86 billion neurons in human brain. Memory encoding involves making of connections among various neurons through a three-stage process: encoding, consolidation and recall. Scientists commonly believe that marvel of human mind is created in and by the external universe through the three-stage process. I intuitively feel that mind is too limitless to be a product that is limited by comparison to outer universe. To my thinking, the human mind assumes dimensions of interplay beyond the bounds of the physical universe and may have a different connection or that it has surpassed its original framework through self-learning over millennia.
As an afterthought I am amazed and intrigued how a Sufi poet and philosopher, Bulleh Shah of Kasur, over three centuries earlier had raised the question of 'who am I' in his very inspiring Sufi lyrics that are sung with ever growing reverence as time passes.
I know not who I am
I am neither a believer going to the mosque
Nor given to non-believing ways
Neither clean, nor unclean
Neither Moses not Pharoah
I know not who I am
I am neither among sinners nor among saints
Neither happy, nor unhappy
I belong neither to water not to earth
I am neither fire, not air
I know not who I am
Neither do I know the secret of religion
Nor am I born of Adam and Eve
I have given myself no name
I belong neither to those who squat and pray
Nor to those who have gone astray
I know not who I am
I was in the beginning, I’d be there in the end
I know not any one other than the One
Who could be wiser than Bulleh Shah
Whose Master is ever there to tend?
I know not who I am.
Poem by Bulleh Shah, (English translation)
The writer holds a PhD degree from Stanford University, California USA. He is a former Federal Secretary and has been CEO/Chairman of OGDCL and Chairman NEPRA.
E-mail: [email protected]