Education: Life and Consciousness:


The Nature of Thought – Part XVI


by Mr. Iain Kirkaldy-Willis,

Naturalistic Philosopher

Canary Islands, Spain


Looking at oneself in the mirror, one does not see who one is but what one has become, as a result of the experiences one has been through, up to then. I have mentioned this before. I do so again now, for looking into this mirror of the soul, in the face of what humanity is and what it has done, if you feel uncomfortable and do not like what you see, you need to know you can change that. Since the way we conduct ourselves stems from our attitudes and mentality, any change in them will be reflected in our behavior. So, just as the features of the face you see come from how you have experienced and handled life so far, the way you choose to handle experience right now will give you another face, will form what you will become, in due course.

This article includes a 3rd image/text series on Direct Experience, with the idea of who we will become in mind. All that follows has already appeared in earlier articles. So, the ideas are not new, but are a re-formulation for yet another consideration of experiencing life directly and living accordingly.


Every form of life is not just a life-form, but the world of a multitude of forms of life. Teeming with life other than its own, my body is a world in itself, something more than everything I conceive myself to be, for it is crawling with parasites. A vast community of bacteria, fungi and viruses, on the skin, in every orifice and in the lungs and guts inhabits the world I am. I depend on these microbes. (Something as intimate as a mother´s feeding her child, for instance, only happens through the single-celled creature that digests the sugars in the milk, so releasing short-chain fatty acids which are what actually feed her infant.) They manage me in all sorts of ways. They affect my mood; take charge of my immune system; both protect me from disease and make me ill. They will kill and decompose me. This is my microbial ecosystem. With 90% of body cells being bacteria, include the other micro-organisms and biologically, my body is even less than 10% human!


So, one could say we are the playground of a multitude of creatures collectively cleverer and more ingenious than us as they operate and cooperate, nurture one another and create the synergy within us that keeps us alive, in more or less vibrant health and moving through a succession of transformations in life. We provide everything they need to have their place in us. It is not just that we are their home, they are us. We would not be but for them. We could not be without them. It is only we who do not perceive the life-affirmative and the degenerative belonging to the same self-determining faculty in all life.


Without realizing it, we are breathing the DNA of other species, so dispersing them to pursue this game everywhere else. With 40 trillion microbes living in the human body, 37 billion of which get into the air around us every hour we sneeze, cough, talk and breathe, the air is a sea of life. But, with no recognition of what this means, it engenders nothing in us beyond the mundane fear and revulsion of catching something from others´ germs. Well, there are, in actual fact, neither good germs nor bad ones, for each has its place within the larger life as to what sickens or sustains, kills or cures, for they operate in unison.


In your wildest dreams could you ever have imagined the sea of DNA you are in, when, for just one hour, you put 37 billion packets of DNA into the world? That is just YOU, in 1 HOUR! And then there is the DNA wriggling in every cell of the organs, tissues and fluids of your body, in all the 90% of other organisms that constitute the world that YOU are, in me and everyone else who are but 0.01% of the mass of living things, who are themselves breathing, snorting, roaring, bleating, cheeping and chirping, not to mention the DNA in all those microbes at loose in the atmosphere, soil and seas of the planet.


If we are the playground of creatures collectively cleverer and more ingenious than us, Gaia is similarly such a playground that includes us. So, if we were to operate accordingly and cooperate with other life, to nurture one another and belong to the synergy within her that is her life, she would become whole again.


Earth is generally considered to have come about something like 4.5 billion years ago. With building evidence pointing to DNA, amino acids and other elements having come from Outer Space, the first simple forms of life are thought to have emerged 3.5 billion years ago. Purely and simply life did not go any further than that because the still volatile conditions did not favor it. According to the fossil record, nothing further happened until around 540 million years ago, when, in the short span of 10 million years, the rest of life suddenly appeared, fully fledged - a brief period that is literally of the proportions of a comma in a complex sentence, in which we neither understand what happened, nor how what is yet to come is going to be punctuated. Like the coming of spring, something triggered life to flower, so that creatures with scales, feathers and fur, teeth and claws, wings and fins and legs and things appeared all together. All at once, here was the plenitude of life.  In this case, succession has simply been the tide of life and intelligence flooding back, subsequently, after the catastrophes that ravaged Earth – bacteria, microbes that were around anyway, `older´ forms of life that weathered the cataclysm, `new´ species, manifesting the same characteristics, bursting forth.


The clue here is how, from deep down on the sea-floor and within the Earth´s crust, out into the atmosphere, bacterial activity weaves the fabric of DNA-based life on Earth together as one.

Every form of life traces its origins back to bacteria. In this bacteria are the Last Universal Common Ancestor (LUCA) of all life on the planet. On top of how each life form teems with myriad bacterial populations within itself, it is a bacterial modification, each a development, a simpler or more complex innovation, according to its scale of being. It is bacteria that employ symbiogenesis, the fusion of two different cells to produce a new organism, the way many forms of life, like us, reproduce. We are bacteria because we come from bacteria!  It is their presence freely in the atmosphere and in the sea that creates that precious zone close to land and sea surfaces in which life flourishes. Embracing and penetrating all living organisms, this bacterial freedom of movement drives the planet´s eco-system services. (Microbes are, for example, the super ice-inducing agents in the atmosphere that trigger precipitation.)  Forming a globally diverse, functionally unified being in how the Earth and life thereon is, bacteria are everything! Earth is actually a bacterial super-organism!


What this has to say about any and every expression of life, us included, is that, implicitly part of this whole, they are simple bacteria morphed into more complex forms for the purpose of fulfilling a stabilizing function within the autonomous organization of dynamic processes, occurring within the closed operational whole that is the Earth eco-system.


We are, therefore, looking at DNA as the stuff of life, ever re-arranging itself in the creation of other forms of life. It is everywhere, in everything. It is primordial, `the language of creation´, for each `word´ that it utters is a form of life, the language of life finding other words for itself in the ceaseless process of going where it will. Always in communion with itself, it speaks across the space/time continuum, taking seemingly catastrophic extinction events in its stride.

Each one of us experiences what is happening on Earth right now, according to the point of view our grasp of life gives us. However, way beyond any of these perceptions is the Overarching Life that encompasses not just all our views, but everything that is. Lesser energy fields at play within larger ones are perceived as dimensions, hierarchies of being inhabited by named presences, entities and intelligences. In one´s living from the heart, they speak to one and one communes with them.


All this belongs to your DNA, the serpents of knowledge in your genes, who, as demons, beasts, angels heroes, villains and such, address you in all sorts of ways, as through moments of creative expression, flashes of insight, the turmoil of dreams, the visions of trance and most particularly through the people, circumstances and events of daily life. Meanwhile, the proteins of the neuro-peptides that are the chemical signatures of the particular emotions that course through you, as you go about life, are ever blending with those of the blood, tissues and organs of your being, debasing their quality in the process we call `aging´, though they could as easily be elevating your state, carrying you towards the transcendent dimension of being that adulthood seeks.


To talk about such things comes from being able to recognize them and think about them. We grow in our comprehension of such matters as beings whose identity is cosmic in its reach from our biological nature to the Infinite, for para-normal phenomena are not rare. Many people experience them and have unusual abilities too, they are in reality part and parcel of being human. Such phenomena are a mixture of the astonishing, the intriguing, the freaky, the weird, the mysterious, the grotesque, the scary, and so forth. Together, such experiences and skills that defy reality are traces of the uncharted and unknown in the depths of the human psyche, fleeting glimpses manifesting the immortality that would equip us to live in all dimensions simultaneously, synchronizing ourselves within them, at one with the larger truth of who we are and where we fit. There is nothing we can imagine that is not possible, for immortality is in our genes. Its DNA is the language of life that can and does express whatever it chooses.


Either we consign ourselves to growing old and dying at the limit of our earth-bound experience and knowledge, blind to how we have made that our lot and ignorant of our immortality. Or, we can go the whole way, in the fullness of the awareness that it is the consciousness we have that primed life on Earth and that that Consciousness is expressing its immortality through us, for death is but the return of energy to a place of emanation with which it re-identifies, the reintegration of the consciousness of one form of life with the sea of Consciousness from which it sprang. Life is an intensely direct affair. One needs do no more than live it as such.


For correspondence with the author, contact: Bibliotheque: World Wide.




Presentation A



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