Question: Enlightenment, or being at one with the universal mind, must be very different than the concept of omniscience, or knowing everything about everything. Could you elaborate on the distinction? Or do you believe that one who is enlightened would also be omniscient?
Well, I am not Enlightened, so I cant really give you the Enlightened Perspective on Enlightenment or Omniscience, but I will gladly talk about it with you and tell you what I think, so to speak.
I think the deal is that no matter what you and I and all of us are already one with the Universal Mind. That's because the Universal HeartMindbeing infinitely expressed is all there is, and so, of course, we are already one with it. That's debatable, I know, and people debate about it, and I wasn't always as certain about that as I am now, but that is where my allegiance is now. Thats one thing. Whether one is aware of it or not, whether one is enlightened or not, still, we ARE all one with the Universal already, in my opinion. So, being one with Universal Mind is not equivalent to being Enlightened.
Being CONSCIOUS of that fact, however, and living with an ever-clearer mature realization of what it means is a whole other ballgame.
In terms of your question, the distinction would seem to revolve around how clearly one apprehends the already-existing, unchangeable Fact.
Now, again, I do not consider myself to be Enlightened. I've had my moments of enlightenment and illumination, certainly, and the window of my mind is becoming increasingly clear. I can feel myself waking up, coming out of my drowsy dreamland slumber fog, but I am not yet consistently clear. But, from my unenlightened perspective, I do consider Raj, for one, to be Fully Enlightened, Fully Awake, Totally Clear, the unbiased transparency for Truth, as we've been saying in that other thread, the place where undistorted Wisdom-Clarity can and is flowing through. Whether he really is Enlightened or not is a separate issue, and is debatable, and people do debate about it, but still his teaching is the clearest of which I am aware. I am almost continuously grateful that I stumbled upon their first book in a bookstore one day and was internally guided to buy and read it. It was a fundamental turning point for me.
And Raj has on occasion talked about Omniscience, the capacity to be All-Knowing. Specifically, as an example, as I recall, someone asked him if he knew everything about them. I don't remember exactly what he said, though I do remember the gist of it, because I liked what he said. He said something like, It is within my capacity to do so. Meaning, yes, he could know everything about them if he wanted to, sort of like being able to do an online search, but knowing the details wasn't what he found most interesting. What was more interesting was that he was aware of and knew the TRUTH of who they were, and he knew that this Truth was true no matter what they thought about themselves or what they did as a result of their inaccurate self-sense.
In other words, yes, in that instance and others he has indicated that when you are Fully Awake, when you are really consciously one with everything, when you are experiencing yourself AS the Universal Mind, not merely one with it, then, yes, you really can experience everything as being within yourself, as being some aspect of your infinity, and that you would then be in the position of knowing everything about everything.
In terms of omniscience, then, yes, I am OPEN to that as being possible. I am not convinced it is NOT possible. It is not my actual experience yet, however. And, therefore, I do not feel qualified to discourse on it. But I am comfortable talking about what might be the beginning stages of omniscience, the way to get better at it, because I really am discovering, learning, and proving to myself that as I am able to mentally get online and consciously join with what I have been calling the Internet of Mind and discovering that this bigger Mind is ACTUALLY my mind (!!!) then whenever I need to know something pertinent to whatever predicament I find myself in, that, yes, somehow, in a way that I am not personally responsible for, new Knowing does flow in. Its been happening more, lately.
I don't know everything about everything, but I am finding myself getting better at knowing what I need to know when I need to know it, and, wow, that's huge. That's not nothing. That's nearly equivalent, in terms of practical application.
Being able to access Online Knowing in specific situations during the day is where Im at, and is probably where most people are really at with this, and this feels like what I could call a beginning or preliminary level of omniscience or Knowing. I'm finding that whatever I need to know is almost instantly available in those moments wherein I do not try to solve the problem based on the limited amount of info on my personal hard drive mind, but instead turn my attention to Big Mind, put up my listening ears, and then just relax, trust, get the download, and then start talking or doing whatever is required of me in that moment.
Being able to do this has immediate relevance in my life, and is not just speculative. It helps me get through workshops. It helps me get through the day. It helps, period. Its turning out to be a better way of being in the world. Rather than making all my decisions and choices based on the necessarily limited amount of info on my personal hard drive mind, things work out better when I access this other resource by googling the internet, joining with That, and then letting the download happen as how I be me.
And the more I am able to just stay online and thereby keep the conscious connection, then an effortless Ongoing Knowing just seems to be what happens.
So, for me, and I realize I am being somewhat repetitive, the notion of omniscience is having the most immediate meaning or relevance or impact in the sense of realizing that it actually does seem possible to know WHATEVER YOU NEED TO KNOW when you need to know it. And all you've got to do is mentally get online and then dare to do as your deepest impulses are encouraging you to do.
Right now, I am less concerned with knowing everything, and I am not that interested in speculating about whether it is even possible to know everything at this point, it would just be a guess but I am VERY interested, concerned, and involved with accessing what seems to be an always-available Universal HeartMind Knowing in the midst of the specific situations I find myself in, in order to flow more harmoniously with the way life works. It seems smart to do this. Things work better (in my experience) when I do this.
Yes, I think that one who is Fully Enlightened would probably be omniscient, but, for me, honestly, at the moment, that is mostly speculation. I vote we not get too entangled in speculative discussion, and instead busy ourselves getting Enlightened and then see for ourselves! And, on the way to finding out what omniscience means, to get the hang of it in easier situations in daily life by mentally getting online and accessing Big Mind Knowing whenever you need to know something. That is, get online and then stay online as you do whatever you need to do. And when it feels like you get disconnected, then do whatever you've got to do to get online again, and then continue doing whatever you've got to do, being wherever you find yourself being. The more I practice getting online, then naturally the easier I'm finding it is to stay online, and the more obvious it is when I get disconnected, so to speak, and the more willing I am to then voluntarily use my mind to get connected again, so to speak, so as to yield to the flow of the Movement.
So, I guess I'm making a distinction between omniscience as All Knowing (something I feel less qualified to talk about) and omniscience as Ongoing Knowing (something I am truly more appreciative of every new day).