Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Confidence in our Authenticity

"The world is not a problem to be solved;
it is a living being to which we belong.
It is part of our own self and we are a part of its suffering wholeness. Until we go to the root of our image of separateness, there can be no healing.
And the deepest part of our separateness from creation lies in our forgetfulness of its sacred nature,
which is also our own sacred nature."
Thich Nhat Hanh

     A mostly hidden, silent part of us may resonate & sympathize. But the dominant "practical, responsible, adult" part likely pulls away, and yanks us firmly "back into reality." 
     If we reflect on our own & society's overall approach to life, we may notice that it's based on fearful self-interest, in a competitive, adversarial relationship towards other people, animals & the environment. 
     If we seriously attempt to go even deeper eg by meditating - we'll notice that we're surprisingly averse to self-reflection partly because we (mistakenly) assume that our authenticity, the depth of our being (which resonates with Thich Nhat Hanh's statement) - is somehow too fragile & could not survive in our hostile world.

     We appear to have two very distinct natures
          • one which is in harmony, profoundly interconnected & interdependent, perhaps even one with others & the environment;
          • the other which is alone, competing against other people, animals & the environment.

     The ideal middle way may be exemplified by a wise grandmother, and how she relates to her grandchildren with nurturing unconditional love. This is BOTH absolutely admirable AND a perfectly practical model we can, & have the responsibility to emulate. 
     To the degree that we're conditioned (we're all conditioned / trained / traumatized by our genetics & life experiences) we feel as if we're alone in a hostile world. AND yet we directly experience that in the depth of our being, we're intimately connected to & interdependent with everything.
     Is the mess we're in personally & globally caused by estrangement from our own (& everyone else's) depth of being / authenticity? Do we allow our lives to be run by primitive instincts: fight, flight & freeze - OR - are we evolved enough to collaborate in harmony? Can we deeply reflect on our true nature and progressively learn to embody the depth of who we truly are?

"We are the ones we have been waiting for."
Alice Walker

1 comment:

  1. Yes, quite a gripping reflection with which a Christian might resonate quite freely. The vision of the better of the two nature's is always in the grandmother's heart but she realizes the present is where we are walking and. It is a gift to be savoured and an opportunity to be pursued. Of course that other nature lurks in the conditioning from our long past, but she realizes we need not be imprisoned or led by it. Awareness of its presence enables choices to the better side. St Paul speaks of walking according to the Spirit (of God), not according to the flesh (the sinful option that destroys goodness). Speaking as a grandfather, I hold that grandmother close: her wisdom is gold.