Fresh Thinking, Inspiration, and Vision on the Process of Spiritual Transformation
Do you feel that strong spiritual invitation in these days?—Come on back! Come on back. I hear myself issuing that invitation often to my capacities. Come on back! Through the sadness that I feel sometimes when I’m looking out into the world, the spirit deep within me expresses an appeal: Please come on back. Come on back into trust; come on back into the reality that is there if we just look past what seems to be so important.
There’s much conflict going on in the world today. Much of it is in the name of unity and democracy. But I’m wondering, what does democracy bring? All too often democracy means, to those who pursue it, the freedom to have your preferences, the freedom to make your choices on a personal basis. That seems to be ultimate freedom. I can carve out my piece of life out of the total pie and I can do with it what I like—and the more of it I can carve out, the better I’m doing. It seems like many lives are built on that—personal preferences, often at any cost. And we only have to look around the globe to see the ecological impact of economies born from democracy. It is the impact of human greed and the pursuit of personal preferences and greater and greater levels of comfort. It is not democracy, itself, that is the problem, and I don’t believe another political system would change the underlying issue. The issue is the consciousness that manifests through democracy.
The lack of trust in the abundance of the universe has brought humanity to a fairly sorry state. I don’t believe it is beyond redemption, but I do believe that something has to change in the consciousness of mankind. Something has to reunify the consciousness of humankind with the consciousness of the Creator because that was how humanity was made to be in the first place, and that is our destiny.
So there is that voice that calls humanity to come on back to the state of union with Source. It is a call to change the focus from pursuing personal preferences and attempting to carve out a life. Those approaches to life promote isolation, which in turn has us looking around for ways to ameliorate the loneliness and alienation that results. Maybe getting more stuff will help! Maybe that will bridge this chasm that I experience between myself and the rest of the world, or myself and the source of my own being. Let me fill it with yet more stuff. But that stuff is based on what I like.
The choices that we make, every one of us, create the life that we experience. And they impact the lives of others. The choices that we make collectively, as humanity, set a particular direction. The question is, upon what are those choices based? How do we see our lives and how do we see our purpose?
There are opportunities every day, and in fact in every moment of our lives, to put in practice a new conscious direction for our life. There are opportunities, personally, to “come back.” We can notice, as we live and work together with other people, how my preference will bump up against your preference. We can notice when they’re different, and when I’m determined to hold on to my preference and you’re determined to hold on to yours. And we can know what that way of living leads to: separation, isolation, and certainly not happiness, certainly not fulfillment. Catching ourselves “in the act,” we can choose to see the situation from a higher place. We can withdraw all the energy being expended to create, maintain and protect our personal preferences, based on an isolated experience.
Real change depends on this kind of practical action in the small events of our daily lives if there is to be new awareness and new perspective brought to the larger issues that humanity faces. If we can address what is happening personally, then we have the basis to address what is happening based on how we, as humanity, have isolated ourselves culturally, provincially and nationally—then sought to support and defend that isolation.
We don’t have to relinquish our unique way of being in the world. We, each one of us, have our piece to bring, which is very different to anyone else’s. And if we don’t bring the genuine article of what it is that’s ours to bring, then it’s missing, because no one else brings it. We don’t all have to be clones and all agree on every last thing. But if we want any sort of creative future, and if this planet is to have any sort of creative future, certainly while we as humanity are still around we have to listen and we have to express that voice that says, “Come on back.” Come on back into right relationship with the Creator, with your capacities, with your resources, with your world, with nature. Come on back into alignment.
There is a reality that is very difficult for people to get, probably because the ideas that surround it have been bandied about so loosely. That reality is oneness. The truth is that there is one universe, one creation, one Source, and one shared experience for all of humanity. A poem by Bulleh Shah says it this way:
One thread, one thread only!
Warp and woof, quill and shuttle,
countless cloths and colors,
a thousand hanks and skeins—
with ten thousand names
ten thousand places.
But there is one thread only.
(“One Thread,”by Bulleh Shah, English version by Ivan M. Granger)
I think that speaks very beautifully of the reality of this life and this creation, the reality of purpose, the reality of mission, the reality of relationship with God. We all have our parts to play in the state of the world by the choices we make and the preferences we hold on to, the attention we pay to whether the ways we live our lives give expression and support to the greater presence of God in the midst of the grander emerging design. We just have to remember that. If we do, and when we do, the voice is present in our world: Come on back. Come on back to the real state.