Monday, 2 March 2009

Why me...etc

The process by which we realize our true identity is one that requires the ‘noticing’ of all the ‘things’ that we learn to identify with but are in ‘truth’ not us. This can be a lengthy process of elimination in terms of corporeal time, or it can be an almost instantly induced realization of the ‘I’ that says I am. In both instances meditation and contemplation tend to be the ‘traditional’ methods. However, we live in a world with a thousand voices all trying to convince us to identify with something we are not, and it’s easy to forget our self even once we have tasted that deeper sense of who we are! Hence the need to remember and the effort to remind our self about our self! The value of this process is only fully appreciated when it is clearly seen that any and all our unhappiness, suffering, stress and conflict are always due to one thing, and that is not being aware of our authentic self i.e. not BEING our authentic self.

And so to the second dimension in our trilogy of short but slightly significant questions. Why HERE? Just as why ME cannot be addressed without exploring who is the I that is me, so too Why HERE first requires an enquiry into WHERE Am I? WHERE exactly is HERE? In other words what is the ‘context’ we find ourselves in. Once again our sense of context, or ‘where’ we are, is hugely influenced by our sense of identity and the beliefs and perceptions we have assimilated from others about the world around us. For example if we have learned to identify our self with a ‘national label’ our sense of context will be largely influenced by the concept of a country and the culture that comes with a national identity. We will see our self positioned within and as a part of a ‘national context’. But if we have realized that countries are just groups of people who have learned to collude in identifying with a label given to a piece of land, then we transcend the narrow sense of a context defined by nationality. We will more likely see our self not as a member or citizen of a country, but more as a human being within all humanity. Quite a jump in our ‘contextual awareness’ after a lifetime of ‘nationalistic conditioning’.

Not long ago, perhaps only 100 years ago, most people’s sense of context was quite narrow. They were born, grew up, worked and died in a small community with little or no awareness of anything beyond that context. Today, huge numbers of us will not only travel the world but even work around the world. And even if we don’t visit the world in person we can watch the world from our armchair. From this purely physical point of view our sense of context has expanded exponentially in a relatively short space of time. When Mother Theresa started her work her sense of context was quite ‘small’ and narrow as she sought only to help those in need in a very small local community. But by the time she passed on she had a ‘sense of context’ that was global. Her work spread around the world through her organization as she served the world.

And so from a three dimensional ‘world out there’ point of view we can each choose and create our own sense of context if we wish. We can confine our awareness and our focus in life to a small localised context, or we could choose to do something in the world, perhaps for the world, throughout the world. Just as our truest sense of who we are can contract around a false sense of identity or expand into the unbounded and undivided being of ‘pure awareness’ that we are, so too our sense of context is an awareness that can contract or expand.

A slightly less visible and less tangible dimension of context is relationship. Life is relationship and relationship is not a static condition. It is ‘dynamic’ and ever changing. And if we don’t understand these dynamics, if we don’t learn to align with the laws and principles behind these dynamics, if we don’t develop an ability to ‘play’ within the dynamics of relationship there will always be a ‘jarring’ effect within our exchanges with others. Over time we will start to feel like the stranger at the party wondering both where we are and why we are here!

The basic dynamic of relationship that defines the ‘context of relationship’ is an exchange of energy. It could be said that there is harmony in relationship when there is a natural giving and receiving of positive energy. This is the law of harmony. And if there is a feeling of disharmony, if there is any negative thinking or emotional turmoil during an exchange, it usually means giving and receiving has turned into wanting, taking or keeping. When HERE is seen to be our relationship with everyone and everything around us, and when we are able read the internal signals that indicate disharmony, we can begin to re-align with the dynamics of relationship that generate and sustain harmony. As we attempt to do so we may discover it’s not that easy being ‘harmonious’ with ALL others in the HERE. Others can be easily perceived to be anything from kind and generous to sly and manipulative, from caring and benevolent to nasty and brutish. Consistent good character, necessary to the creation of harmony in relationship, can be a rare find in a world where few really know who they are, and where most spend their life defending and sustaining an identity which is not true, not real. While at the same time some of our own habitual inclinations, include attempting to control others, judging and criticizing others or simply complaining about others, are not exactly born of the intention to create harmony. A harmonious exchange can be challenging to create and it often seems easily lost. Realising we have moved away from giving and receiving and into wanting, taking or keeping is always the first step back to the co-creation of harmony in a ‘relational context’.

When we see HERE (the context of our life) as relationship the essential realization that follows is that this is a creative context. We are HERE to be creative. Unfortunately for many, if not most of us, we either don’t or cannot see our life happening as a creative process but more as a consumptive process. We learn more to consume than to create. Why? Simply because we don’t know our self accurately. When we see ourselves as solely physical forms then consumption tends to become the primary intention and behaviour. Our sense of HERE is as a place and opportunity to get, to acquire and to consume. Opportunity quickly becomes necessity. Whereas when we know our self as the conscious being that ‘occupies’ form we begin to restore our awareness of our true creative potential. We begin to fully understand and how we create not only our life HERE but also co-create with others the state of the world out THERE!

It’s in this attempt to ‘create harmony’ in your relationships, and perhaps the repeated failure to do so, that you may notice that the ‘real HERE’ is not ‘out there’! The deepest HERE is prior to your relationships ‘out there’! The deepest awareness of the context of our life is closer to home than we think. We tend to see HERE as somewhere ‘out there’ in the world around us. But in truth HERE is within you, within you the being of consciousness. And it is HERE, within your self, that you do what you are designed to do, which is not to watch others in the world, not to judge others in the world, not to argue with others in the world or attempt to fix the others in the world, it is to ‘create’ the world, including others.

The world in this sense does not mean physical objects or other people’s forms, or indeed the consciousness of others. Objects and forms are already created, as is the consciousness of others. However, the ‘real world’ is HERE within your consciousness, where you, the artist of life, abide. The canvas is the screen of your mind and you paint (create) the world with your perceptions, thoughts, feelings and intuitions. But you are unlikely to find this easy to ‘see’ until you see and realise that everything, which means every ‘thing’, exists in two places at once. Out there and in HERE…so to speak. What appears to be ‘there’ is really HERE! And HERE is where ‘I am’. And it is the ‘I’ that says ‘I am’ that creates what appears ‘out there’ in HERE.

The simplest proof of this, if it can be called ‘proof’ is as follows. We all know that we each interpret the same external scene, event or circumstance differently. We will each create a different perception within our consciousness of what ‘seems’ to be happening ‘out there.’ Regular contemplation, reflection and meditation increases the capacity to see that to perceive is to create and that you perceive/create the world/people out there according to your state of consciousness in HERE, within the ‘I’ that says ‘I am’. To a realised ‘I’, to the one who is aware that they are simply pure awareness, it is clearly seen that the ‘real world’ is not out there, it’s HERE … right HERE! The world out there becomes a secondary reality, a projection and co-projection of ‘projectors’, known as human beings. For example, those human beings who call themselves news reporters or journalists create their perception of what is happening out THERE in their HERE, in their primary reality (consciousness), and then project it out into the secondary reality of the world in the form of paper and ink. The rest of us then project our perception of their projection, created within the primary reality of our consciousness, out into the world of our relationships. This of course is an action that triggers/stimulates/creates more actions, which makes more news! And so the world out there, which isn’t ‘out there’, is really just a projection of the world in HERE.

The awakening of our awareness to the realization that our ‘primary reality’, and therefore our deepest awareness of context, is within our own consciousness, has massive implications for the way we live (create) our lives.

It becomes obvious that you are obviously totally responsible for your own sense of reality, which you create within your own consciousness. Everything that emerges from that ‘reality’ including your thoughts, feelings, attitudes and actions, regardless of what seems to be happening ‘out there’, is one hundred percent the responsibility of the self . Occasionally we encounter someone who seems to intuitively know and live this way. Nothing ‘out there’ disturbs them because they know it’s not what happens out there but how they create HERE what happens out THERE that allows them to stay calm, focused and proactively responsive.

The tension of searching comes to an end as ‘the truth’ is found, seen and known within consciousness. Truth is ‘reality’, truth is what is real, and the highest reality is the universe of ‘the self’, and the self does not need to be searched for, as it is never lost. Neither is anything missing from the self other than the self being aware that reality is ‘self’, is consciousness, and that consciousness is the creator, all else is creation, all else is ‘play’ in a lower reality, including going to work!

Which all adds up to one single conclusion – ultimately, to a being that knows they are a being of consciousness and not the form they occupy, there is no THERE only HERE. Wherever you go, which means wherever you take your form, HERE is always where you are! If you believe YOU are going somewhere it’s an illusion. When the illusion is ‘seen through’, it’s a fun illusion, you can play with it and within it, as it ceases to have power over you the ‘I’ that says ‘I am’. But until it is ‘seen through’ it is an illusion that clouds your awareness of reality and generates disharmony and suffering in HERE! And so when someone asks you WHERE are you going, you can now reply with conviction, “Nowhere really, for in reality I am always HERE…in reality”. They are unlikely to understand a word you are saying but it can be a great conversation opener into the most important questions WHY ME, WHY HERE!

Question: Why is the ‘real’ world (reality) not ‘there’ but always HERE?

Reflection: Where is HERE exactly and how do you know?

Action: Take five minutes at the end of each day this week, look back on the day and find two perceptions that you could have created differently.

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Approach to teaching

Methods there are many, principles but few, methods often change, principles never do