Once in the while someone asks me, â€œDid you ever smoke?â€ I immediately answer, â€œI used to, but then I discovered K-Y-Jelly!â€ Most get it, but when I see a puzzled look in their faces, I explain, â€œYou see? Most of my smoking was the result of friction.â€ Then I see them laughing; by the way, if you do not live in the United States, K-Y Jelly is a brand for an intimate lubrication. Now, back to smoking; the seduction of the act of using tobacco starts with the appearance of control, even the verb â€œto smokeâ€ seems to be an active action when it is passive. The mouse appears to beÂ controlÂ on the act of snatching the cheese out of the trap.Â Actually, nobody smokes; a person has to be on fire to be smoking; instead, the cigarette, the cigar or the joint that smokes, and the user inhales.Â The act of burning is active, the inhaling is passive.Â If you doubt that burning is active, then you never had carpet burns on your knees. The verb to smoke, is it a lazy use of language? Perhaps, but I think there is more than that denotation and connotation of what is involved in the act of using tobacco.
It is very difficult in this day and age to find someone who never played a computer game. Â Usually, the computer games are designed in levels, the higher the level the more difficult is to move to the next level up. Â So why are computer games so addictive to some? Â Because in my opinion, computerized games are an imitation of a life that should be lived. Computer games provide immediate gratification when moving to the next level, in real life, it takes a long time to move to the next level, and that is called delayed gratification. Â So in a game is has immediate gratification and the synaptic responses produce several types of brain stimuli; but in real life the satisfaction of moving on in a better stage or state in life takes a lot of practice, commitment and a long time.Â Many could look into their lives at a move to the next level, for instance: a graduation, a pregnancy, a promotion or a retirement. One could also look at each reincarnation as a move to a higher level of evolution, both in mundane or spiritual evolution.
Generic Game Menu
By the way, let us analyze the archetype of a video or computer game, the elements are: participating in a virtual reality by proxy, immediate gratification, most of the time the player is alone. Now that we have the main archetypal elements, let compare it to masturbation: participating in a virtual reality by proxy, immediate gratification, most of the time theÂ masturbatorÂ is alone. Â In other words, both computer games and masturbation require the engagement of the mind into something that does not exist. Microsoftâ€™s X-Box, Nintendo and Playstation are in the business of exploiting youngstersâ€™ ignorance and selling them another type of mental masturbation, selling a virtual reality to players to enjoy themselves in a self-repeating loop.Â Although the comparison fits, there is a distinction when a video game becomes an addiction.
This comparison will not detract us from how analogous a video game is similar to real life. Â Did you ever see the movie, â€œGroundhog Day?â€ Â So, the movie shows an anti-hero who is cursed in living the same day over and over again until he learned to be a wholesome individual. See? The plot of the movie â€œGroundhog Dayâ€ could be analogous to a computer game in levels or to reincarnation until the person is liberated from karma.
Did you ever see a swami or a Hindu with three horizontal lines scribbled with ashes on their foreheads? Those lines are a representation that life is divided into three levels, and the levels are: impure or lower, mixed or middle, and pure or higher.Â In Sanskrit these levels are called Gunas and their names are: Tamasic or impure, Rajasic or regal (both pure and impure) and Sattvic or pure.Â The swamis with those lines in their heads are either announcing that they are liberated from karma or that they are aware of the task ahead in overcoming the Gunas.
The Gunas lines on the forehead of the deity Lord Shiva. The snakes are also symbolic, like the medical community uses two snakes in their logo or shield.
GAME OF LIFE LEVEL 1
How impure is aÂ TamasicÂ life? Remember the insult, â€œhe is a low-life?â€ Thatâ€™s it! An impureÂ life seeksÂ polluted elements. Therefore a low-life will see impure air, impure liquids, impure food, impure language, impure acts, and so on.Â A low-life individual will seek low-places, like Garth BrooksÂ sangÂ â€œI got friends in low places.â€ Â A low place with polluted air, polluted beverages like bars and casinos are not always available, so the portability of cigarettes, marijuana, meth, and crack cocaine allows a person to pollute their own surroundings and inhale that maleficent air.Â The same goes process is found in liquids, in food, in speech, and in acts. Therefore, Tamasic or impure liquids are altering state beverages like alcohol, and medications. Â TamasicÂ or impure foods are foods which require the death of another being like cows, pigs, chicken and so on.Â The Tamasic or impure speech is full of various insults, and Tamasic acts inadvertently lands the person in prison because of violence or greed.
GAME OF LIFE LEVEL 2
Suppose that Tamasic individuals got out of jail and they are reformed and they moved on to the next level up, Rajasic or regal, also many times referred as both pure and impure. A person may not smoke cigarettes, but spends money on purchasing incense and perfume.Â In other words, a perfumed air is not pure, yet not impure. The Rajasic diet could be vegetarian, yet the food is very spicy both inÂ pepperÂ or in taste.Â A Rajasic beverage would beÂ stimulantÂ yet not mind altering, like coffee or expensive wines more for the taste than in the act of getting drunk.Â A Rajasic speech may not necessarily contain insults, but it will contain gossip and sarcasm, and Rajasic acts are mundane acts, or a person engaged in the rat-race.
GAME OF LIFE LEVEL 3
Suppose that our Rajasic friends are out the spicy food and stimulant beverages out of their systems, what is next? A Sattvic life.Â The Sattvic foods are exclusively vegetarian, most of the time prepared with prayers, no spices and very bland.Â Â SattvicÂ foodÂ haveÂ healing powers, that is why they are served in hospitals, the food has no spices and are very bland. A Sattvic individual is basically a monk, or a swami. The Sattvic beverages are usually pure water or hot drinks without stimulants.
GAME OF LIFE LEVEL 4
Oh, I would love to know how to write about this level, a person beyond the Gunas. Â A liberated person; or a person who escaped the game of karma.Â It takes years of living a Sattvic life, immersed in prayers and meditation. Â According to scriptures from different religious, breaking through level four would be that moment that Jesus was able to belittle the seductions offered by the devil, documented in the Bible inÂ Matthew 4:1-11.Â The same moment was documented about 600 years earlier before Jesus when Prince Gautama became the Buddha (or the Enlightened). Â The Buddha was also able to overcome the seductions of Mara sitting under the Bodhi Tree. Now if you are not religious, the mundane version of this liberation point is found in the movie â€œThe Matrix,â€ when the protagonist Neo is near death and he recognizes the pattern of programing as a veil of numbers all around him.
A scene from the movie “The Matrix,” also a symbol when the hero finds himself or herself in a superior level of understanding.
On a personal note, I think I am still lodged in the Rajasic Level, although I do not pollute my air with smoke, I occasionally drink a beer once a week with friends. Oh boy, I do love coffee! Also, you have probably noticed by now, I have a doctorate in sarcasm (so they are not quite insults, but not the behavior of a total enlightened person either). Â It would be wonderful to skip the Sattvic Level, avoiding a monastic life, taking the vowels of silence and not eating bland food and shooting straight to Nirvana or ultimate liberation; but that is not going to happen, because hidden in the food, hidden in the speech, and hidden in the acts are the elements of desires, and liberated beings of level four have no desires, or are beyond desires, they overcame theÂ GunasÂ or they overcame the world of desires. Like inÂ John 16:33 (KJV) “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer (be courageous);Â I have overcome the world.”Â
A scene from the Bible, also a symbol when the hero finds himself or herself in a superior level of understanding.
Thankfully, most of us are given the tools to play in the game of life.Â The three levels ofÂ GunasÂ are not exclusive to Hinduism, it is found in different religions according to religious format.Â For instance, Native Americans also talk about three levels of consciousness and attitudes among the population. A good illustration of the Native American levels of ascension is found in the movie â€œThe Legend of Billy Jack.â€Â Across the ocean, in Greek mythology, the Twelve Labors of Hercules (or Heracles) also shows how the human being finds spiritual illumination by overcoming levels like a video game illustrates.
The seven chakras, seven levels to overcome desires, in order to reach enlightenment.
On our spinal cords there are seven points known as chakras. The chakras are listed from gross to refined or from bottom to top.Â They start at the base of the sacrumÂ to the top of the head. The low-life individuals or Tamasic individuals will focus the energy of their lives in the lower chakras. Each chakra corresponds to an emotion and a desire. When a person desires a polluted air in the form of a cigarette, not only the person burns the cigarette, the cigarette also burns the person. In other words, the element of desire comes from the chakras and consequently the diseases also come from unbalanced chakras.
It is my personal opinion that regulating drugsÂ isÂ a waste of public money because regulation will not expedite or delay the societyâ€™s or the individual spiritual evolution because whether or not the drug is illegal, if the person has the desire in their chakras, the person will find a way to cultivate a the corresponding vice. So Freud was wrong, â€œsometimes a cigar is just a cigar.â€ Perhaps the spirit of Freud was not prepared to evolve to another level, so he had to pollute his personal air. A polluted air is an element of desire and not an element of need.
FOR FURTHER READING
(ON HOW TO MOVE ON TO THE NEXT LEVEL)
I make very important for everyone to take notice that there is no need to change religions. Most religions have the basic ingredients on how to move on to the next level up in the ultimate â€œGame of Life.â€ Some religions use a dogmatic system and some religions use an empirical system. It depends on the individual on how they want to find God.Â For instance, I was raised as a Catholic, when I turned 15, began to search for other religions available in Brazil. Â Eventually, 10 years later, I discovered Hinduism and Yoga, in Miami, Florida. I found the Eastern system more empirical than the Catholic; nevertheless, I found highly spiritual being and scholars still using Catholicism. In fact, the most famous scholar in mythology, Professor Joseph Campbell had very detailed understanding of symbols and archetypes, yet he found in the Catholic dogmatic system a satisfactionÂ forÂ his spiritual needs. I, on the other hand, had to discover Hinduism (and Astrology) in order to understand Catholicism.Â There are two wonderful books thatÂ disclosesÂ their common elements, firstly â€œThe Holy Scienceâ€ authored by SriÂ Yukteswar (also known asÂ Sri Yoganandaâ€™s guru). â€œThe Holy Scienceâ€ disclose of the similarities of Christianity and Hinduism.Â Secondly, â€œThe Gospel and The Zodiac,â€ authored by Reverend Bill Darlison, in hisÂ book Rev.Â DarlisonÂ shows the commonality of Christianity and Astrology. However, if you really want to take a dive and understand the Gunas, there is no better author than Vyasa who wrote the â€œMahabharata.â€ In the â€œMahabharata,â€ there is a chapter called â€œThe Bhagava Gita,â€ when Lord Krishna himself took his cousin Arjuna aside from the battle and said; â€œArjuna life is like a video game that will be invented thousands of years from now, and there are three levels and they are called Gunas.â€ Evidently, I was kidding about the â€œvideo gameâ€ part; but â€œThe Bhagava Gitaâ€ exclusive talks about three levels of consciousness which leads to threes levels of diets, three levels of speech and three levels of actions.
In the book â€œArchetypes in Our Lives,â€ I disclosed of different religious formats, and how to recognize the archetypal elements around you.Â The book starts on disclosing mundane archetypes and moves into talking about divine archetypes and how to find your spiritual purpose and spiritual evolution.
Book: “Archetypes in Our Lives: How Ancient Archetypes Evolved Into Modern Lives.”
ARE YOU READY TO GET BACK IN THE GAME?
A Tamasic mind will look for polluted air, polluted beverages and partake in polluted acts.Â For instance, it is more likely that a vegetarian will recycle his garbage than a drunken alcoholic, while a vegetarian could be at the level ofÂ RajasicÂ or Sattvic; a drunken alcoholic is more likely to live a Tamasic life.Â When you see people using tobacco products, you will see individuals who thinkÂ of themselves notÂ deserving pure air.Â Intellectually the person knows that cigarettes are detrimental to their own health, but emotion and desiresÂ overtrumpsÂ reason and logic.
A person could be a vegetarian and a bank robber, or a charitable alcoholic. Â In other words, theÂ GunasÂ are not linear. Â Very spiritual people may use cigarettes; which in the game of life means that is doing everything right; but cannot move into the next level up because there is an element of desire blocking their spiritual evolution.Â Using tobacco every day will lead to immediate gratification, not using will lead to enduring gratification. Using a video game is a mental masturbation, living life like is it is a video game is always looking for the next level up. Â It is also important to remember, unlike a video game in real life we only die once.
This essay or blog of â€œLife as a Video Game,â€ was inspired by very beautiful individuals with great souls.Â Yet, I preferred to write, because I will not have the power to convince them; â€œPlease quit smoking (and/or drinking) at this rate because it will hasten your death, and it will also curtail your spiritual evolution!â€Â My hope is, if they see life as a video game, perhaps will make more sense and will encourage them to move to the next level up. Thanks for reading and sharing the Light. Fiat Lux!
Fiat Lux! \"Share the light:\"