“There is no trustworthy standard by which we can separate the ‘real’ from the ‘unreal’ aspects of phenomena. Such standards as exist are conventional: and correspond to convenience, not to truth. It is no argument to say that most men see the world in much the same way, and that this ‘way’ is the true standard of reality: though for practical purposes we have agreed that sanity consists in sharing the hallucinations of our neighbors. Those who are hones with themselves know that this ‘sharing’ is at best incomplete. By the voluntary adoption of a new conception of the universe, … we can and do change to a marked extent our way of seeing things: building up new worlds from old sense impressions, and transmuting objects more easily and thoroughly than any magician.” ~Evelyn Underhill
What the vast majority of us consider reality is no more real than a cartoon or a fantasy novel set in some alien world. We think it is real because most of us agree on it. Something very real could be right in front of us, but if most of us have agreed that it is not real, we will not see it. If most of us look into a garden and see nothing but turnips and tomatoes, the person who also see fairies fluttering around is considered mentally ill. In fact, neither of them is truly seeing reality.
It has been said that if something caused us to shrink in size to be as small as an atom, we would see things very differently. We would see a stone wall as no more solid than the air around it. Both would just look like electrons around a nucleus with a lot of empty space between. You might not be able to even tell the rock from the air, unless you could actually see the energy in those apparently empty spaces. While it is tries that the stones have more atoms and therefore more particles of matter, the real difference is that the amount of energy in the rock, both in and around those atoms, is greater than the energy in the air. So when we call something solid, we are really talking about the energy in it, much as we use terms like volts and amps for electrical energy.
The modern science of Quantum physics, which interestingly is getting closer and closer to ancient spiritual teachings in what it says, now tells us that the apparently very real, very solid, material universe around us, is nothing more than a very complex matrix of light, in other words: a hologram.
What is important in all of this is that once we realize that what we think the world around us is like is actually illusion, than we can realize that making changes is easier than we think. We know, for example, that on the purely physical level, some animals, and even more plants, can recover from the loss of a limb or other body part far better than we can. Just considering the animals, a sea star can grow new arms when one is cut off, some lizards can grow a new tail after one is lost, and sharks grow new teeth to replace worn or broken ones constantly. We cannot do any of that, but is it really because the laws of nature prevent it, or is it just because we believe it? I haven
t heard of anyone ever growing a new arm or leg, but I have heard of cases where people grew a third, or even forth, set of teeth. Those cases are very rare, but they prove that it is possible. We also know that every cell in our bodies get replaces at least once every four years, yet our bodies continue to age. Why? We know from a physiological point of view that it seems to be a problem of communication, namely: when a dying cell grows a replacement, the information passed on to the replacement so it will form correctly is not 100% accurate, it’s probably 99.9% or so. A very small loss, but after several generations, the cell has become significantly different. But is this really the result of nature or is it because we all believe that is what should happen, so out thought make it happen? My feeling is it is mostly the latter, though I have done no experiments to verify that opinion.
The most important thing for us to realize from this is that matter is not what it appears to be and is in a state of constant change. Spirit, on the other hand is permanent and immortal. If you were getting advice from a financial adviser and she told you that funds A, B, and C will eventually die, or change in ways that cannot be accurately predicted, but fund X will never die, never change, just keep growing, which fund would you invest in? While your spirit and soul is fund X, so start making wise investments now.