In a recent post I said that the body IS the soul, made flesh. This is no different than saying the body is the Mind, by certain definitions of mind, or that the body is consciousness, as is everything. Mind and body are not separate, though they may seem so to us.
When we are involved in a material/physical world, such as human experience. a great deal of our natural creative energy is projected “outward” into what we perceive and experience as the material world of experience. We literally create the world of our experience and then respond to it and “in” it. This incredible act of creative power is birthright to all humans, and integral to participating in a world such as ours. There is no way to avoid creating in this way as long as we are human.
The power of this creativity emerges from the “inside” and from direct connection to unmanifest aspects of the self. Let’s call it soul. It is directed by our thoughts, beliefs, and intentions. It is powered by imagination and emotion. While we are incarnated as humans there is no escape from participation in this process of world-creation. However, the very variety of creative expression that is human naturally becomes both convincing and fascinating Thus, we become convinced the world is real independently of us and that we have limited influence over it. And our fascination with our creations leads our attention to turn outward rather than inward. Thus, we fool ourselves into not believing in the creative power that is ours to command.
Our birth into this world is no accident. It is chosen. The creative process is meant to be instructional. It is meant to make us question “What is this and how does it happen? and “What does it mean?” We are here to learn the nature of creativity itself so that we may participate with conscious awareness, ultimately not just in this world but in others as well. We are here to learn. This learning is not meant to cause suffering. We are capable of immense en-JOY-ment of the world we create. And each of us experiences such enjoyment at least some of the time. The enjoyment, in whatever areas of our experience it occurs, is the result of our projection of ideas, expectations and beliefs and imaginings and emotions.
Just so, every experience we create that we find problematic or painful, (unwanted, we think) is the result of our projection of ideas, beliefs, expectations and emotions and imaginings.
But we have a purpose for every experience we create no matter how awful or dire it may seem to us. We don’t create our worlds of experience haphazardly even if we do it with little or no awareness. The purpose, or set of purposes, is completely available to our conscious awareness. The recognition and understanding of that purpose is available to us. There is no hidden aspect of our human selves. There is no hidden aspect of our consciousness, not the ego, not the subconscious (or the unconscious which isn’t truly unconscious) that is at work sabotaging us, causing unbidden and purposeless experience. There is no aspect of our inner life in any of these realms that is hidden from us. It if was hidden, the learning couldn’t occur.
That obviously doesn’t mean that we are automatically or easily aware of our purposes or even aware that we are creating our experience. If such were the case we would have little reason to be human beings. The overall process of creating in this way makes perfect sense if we understand and accept the overall purpose that is learning. Our fascination with the outer world we create and our tendency to disregard and discount the inner world, from which the creation emerges, makes automatic awareness of the process unlikely,
Think about what you believe about your own inner experience--your thoughts and imaginings, your emotions, hopes, dreams and fears and your expectations based on them. Do you believe in their power to create? Do you believe they have real influence over your experience? Do you believe that YOU have that power? In the face of remarkable experience, something so wonderful or so terrible that it is almost overwhelming, do you believe that you created it? Do you believe in good/bad luck? Do you believe you can change your experience by choice? Do you believe in accidents? Do you believe you can be fearless? Do you believe you are or can be the victim of unseen and/or uncontrollable circumstances? Do you believe in guilt and therefore in punishment? Do you believe you are affected by karmic influences that you cannot change? This is a short list of questions to explore.
To be human is, among other things, to experience various emotions. We are MEANT to experience a full range of emotions. All emotions, including fear and hatred, emerge from one basic emotion, and that is love. Think about the times you feel angry or hateful toward someone. It seems to us that they have done something, or are something, that we don’t like. We are offended. And we think the other should be more like us. We want them to be more like us. Or we want them to consider us, treat us with greater respect or acknowledgement. So what we want, if it occurs, will lead us to feel more connected to the other. And what is at the core of that feeling of connection? What is it to overcome the feeling of otherness? Love. This is a bit simplified as our ideas and emotions can be quite complex and even contradictory, but you can follow any emotion back to the love at its core.
It is possible, of course, to get caught in ideas of “I’m right, you’re wrong”. It is possible to fall into self recrimination for having the feelings in the first place. We can tell ourselves that it is our “shadow” side emerging and that we have to face it and change. But what needs to be realized is that, if we let ourselves feel what we feel (and think what we think since that is what the feelings are based on), without judgement, the thoughts and feelings will change of their own accord. It is their nature to move. And if we don’t cling to them, they will change. IF we continue on this path, the feelings, ANY feelings, will ultimately return to their root, which is love. The ideas, ANY ideas, will ultimately return to their root, which is non-judgmental acceptance, for self and other. Thus we land in the experience of clarity and compassion.
To see that someone lacks empathy, to see that they act selfishly and are self absorbed, to see that they crave attention and power, to see the fear that drives such experience, is not projection if it is a clear reading. And to live in a state of clarity and compassion does not make anyone passive. Think of Schindler in nazi Germany, saving hundreds of Jews from the holocaust. Surely his actions were based on clarity about the situation and compassion for those adversely affected. Perhaps also, they were based on his desire to be the most helpful and effective human being he could be under the circumstances.
When we find ourselves in circumstances that are challenging, difficult, painful, frightening, we need to accept, at least a little, that we have created the circumstances ourselves and that we have purpose for doing so. Rather than (or at least in addition to) looking for solutions and change in the outer world, we can begin to ask ourselves some questions such as:
What has changed as a result of this circumstance?
Are there “positive” changes? “Negative” changes?
What do I hope for as a result of this circumstance? What do I expect? Are they the same?
Did this circumstance give me a reason to do something/not do something?
What am I expecting of those around me?
What feelings do I have about this circumstance?
What am I imagining will occur?
What am I afraid of if this circumstance changes or resolves?
What do I tell myself about why this is happening?
Do I think I deserve this circumstance? Do I deserve to be free of it?
Do I blame myself? Feel guilty about it?
Do I blame others? Do I blame uncontrollable/unpredictable circumstances?
Am I trying to avoid knowing or seeing something?
Do I believe I can change this circumstance?
Once again, this is a short list. But trust that it will trigger new or deeper understanding and perhaps some clarity about how to proceed, or what needs to be released.
Remember, problems and challenges are necessary if we are to learn. When we are happy and satisfied with ourselves and our lives there is little motivation to examine how things are occurring. But we can use those areas of our lives that are going well for us to look at what we believe in those areas and how we approach them, what we think and imagine and expect in those areas. These can be very helpful clues to how we create and what we might want to change or release in other areas.
We could exercise greater wisdom and receptivity to the inner knowing that we need by simply paying more attention to our thoughts, imaginings, ideas, expectations. Know that inner knowing frequently presents itself intuitively, through hunches and impulses, dreams, the songs that you find yourself humming, the words or actions of another that suddenly feel heavy with meaning, slips of the tongue, sudden unusual thoughts or images. PAY ATTENTION. Try not to ignore or dismiss. We don’t need to figure everything out in a way acceptable or understandable to our intellect. We need to trust--in ourselves, in our souls, in the creative power that is our birthright.