These I know to be true
Humming in My Universe
Nov. 26, 2006
(If you’re getting a deja vu experience right now as you read this, I admit I wrote a very similar entry on this blog about a year and a half ago. Having learned new stuff, I updated it a bit. I probably will be doing this from time to time since knowledge is after all, dynamic). Please write and tell me what you know to be true!
Followers of Rudolf Steiner, the founder of the revolutionary Waldorf schools situated all over the world believe that we go through stages in life. Other psychologists have expressed similar views. I am not really familiar with Steiner’s stages and know too little about anyone else’s ideas on stages to discuss them. All I know is that I am still going through one particularly extended stage at this moment.
The past 10 years have been a growth spurt for me, especially in my inner journey, which includes my psychological, emotional, mental and, most especially, my spiritual life. It’s like I suddenly awakened to a world that somehow was reconfigured differently overnight.
I started questioning, sometimes doing very intense investigations about my own existence and its meaning(s) some 10 years back, and continue to do so almost daily. I have done inner expeditions, meditations which at times have led me to unmistakable and lucid glimpses of what to me are life’s great mysteries. It often seems like I have walked to the edge of all I know and have contemplated jumping into the abyss. At times, I have actually taken the leap and by so doing, I have picked up some important things that I hold close to my heart.
There are also things I have learned from many masters, from their lives and work, and their books, much of which I have resonated with. I suspect many of my readers would too.
Here’s a caveat before you continue reading. I greatly appreciate the Buddha’s advice regarding the acceptance of any teachings. He said:
Rely on the message, not on the personality of the teacher.
Rely on the meaning, not just the words.
Rely on the real meaning, not just the provisional meaning.
Rely on your wisdom and insight, not just on your ordinary, judgmental mind.
I hope you consider the above as you read on.
These truths, I know, are real for me.
1) That the second rule of life is survival and the first rule is that all are one.
Thanks to Joseph Campbell for expressing this truth that I discovered as evident during moments of grace in my own life. One of those moments was during the great flooding in Aurora province last year. I felt such an oneness with the suffering that I actually solicited clothes, goods and money to send to the victims.
2) That life is composed of contradictions. The pair of opposites such as good and bad, ugly and beautiful, etc. will always be there. They are necessarily with us because they not only validate each other but are inextricably linked. What is white if we do not know black? What is joy if we do not know sadness?
Many times I notice that opposites are also interchangeable. Haven’t we found ourselves eating our words and changing our beliefs, opinions, views and even our morality as our knowledge expands?
3) That everything is perfect just as it is when we surrender to life. Only when we insist on an ideal does life become a struggle and the world, a perennially horrible place.
4) That the divine likes to show up in disguises. If you’re lucky, your spiritual journey reaches an important and happy phase (though fleeting) where almost everything you see and encounter is God and there seems to be nothing else but God.
5) That if we can’t find heaven in the here and now, we will never find it.
6) That if we could ask God what life’s meaning was, God would say, ‘It’s up to you’.
7) That the biggest source of unhappiness is the refusal to be living in the moment, and the second one is rejecting the call to be fully conscious and accepting of one’s power to create one’s reality.
8) That only what is eternal is real, that the spiritual journey is all about finding the eternal, timeless truths in this temporal setup called ‘life’.
9) That we have it wrong when it comes to dying. Contrary to our beliefs, death is probably the happiest moment in one’s life since everything false and unreal about us disappears and what remains is only what is eternal and true. And we finally get to meet God and know the unknowable.
10) That despite the level or state of our spirituality and enlightenment, we still have to do the mundane tasks of living. The house still needs to be cleaned, the dinner plates have to be washed, laundry done and other worldly matters attended to. Enlightenment is not exchanging earth for heaven but finding heaven on earth.
11) That life is complex, and to understand life is to appreciate its many layers of meaning and to accept it as such is a step toward living its richness.
12) That the truth really sets you free but sometimes it can first make you extremely mad and uncomfortable. You have to show up ready to accept it.
13) That there is the so-called little truth and there is the big truth. Little truth has a near expiration date. After a while it just ceases to be true. On the other hand, Big Truth is such that it has not reached its expiration date, and it may seem like it never will.
14) That what we do for work speaks about what we have and what we do for leisure speaks about what we are. And lucky is the man whose leisure activities bring him what he has.
15) That symbols take us out of the literal and into the magical, mystical reality of God. All religions are true symbolically but become problematic when we interpret them literally, or worse, like scientific documents.
16) That while man’s greatest yearning is to have a divine experience, God’s greatest kick is having a human experience through people. If religions are to be believed, God likes to tinker with human lives, or even be human! Our lives are God’s ‘out-of-spirit’ experiences.
17) That every moment is fresh and renewing and to partake of its gifts, we must learn to let go of baggage from the past.
18) That to harbor revenge and hatred is like taking poison but hoping someone else dies. This I learned from the writer Gerald Jampolski.
19) That no matter how much we love and idolize someone, time will come when we will have to outgrow them to come into our own.
My 20th rule is equally important to accept and understand:
20) That there are days when I am stupid, dense, unconscious, and not attentive and so none of the above can seem true for me.
And that’s all right! ###
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