Such questions epitomize the apex of ridiculousness―naively insensitive and insanely idealistic―if we base our views on what is in the news, what we are told in school, and on the values propagated by what we can call consensual reality.
In the cultural process of our domestication, we are taught that we are separate beings who live in a “survival of the fittest, us and them” world and, that unfortunately, there is not enough of anything to go around.
Now this vast generalization and over-simplification is easily cast in the light of lunacy, paranoia, and conspiracy, if not at first considered agitating and unwholesome.
Yet it is equally easy, when we try, to open our minds to the possibility that we are inherently, energetically connected with each other in the so-called web of life and that there is no “us” and there is no “them.”
But, how unpatriotic! How heretical! The notion of oneness implies that we and our enemies, in all their forms, are related―that we are all tied together somehow in this thing called life. We can’t have that! Or can we?
Whether we inquire via science, via spirituality, or via what we call common sense, we can observe, intuit, or deduce the reality of our connection―verily the bond―that unifies us in this world we are all undeniably a part of.
When we delve within ourselves we may discover an essence that is the essence of all that is. We may discover our brotherhood and sisterhood, not only with our fellow human beings, but with the plants and animals and even the rocks and water and air, and the sun and the moon and the stars. We may examine the more-than-mythical stories of our ancestors over the millennia that tell us of community, of relation to and compassion for all in the web of life.
It turns out that our essence, the essence of all that is―pure Spirit, if you like―has never been compromised and is completely intact underneath the conditioning and cultural domestication we have undergone.
Rather than fixing what is wrong with the world (because it is not broken) we can work at dusting off, refocusing, and polishing our perception to see the gem of our soul which shines eternal. When we rediscover the infinite, divine reality of our being and of all existence, the illusion of our separateness dissipates.
I. You. Us. Them. Yours. Mine. Scarcity. Competition. Haves. Have nots. These words and the ways of being they engender are propping up a consensual reality where war―individually and as nations―is a way to get what we think we need to live. Yet this is not reality for it is not who we really are.
At the frontiers of modern science, quantum physics cannot tell us where one entity or thing ends and another begins. All is made of energy intermingling in myriad patterns that give the illusion of individuation yet they cannot be truly separated as they are part of the same interdependent whole.
The great yogis speak of each of our souls as a point of light reflected by the sun on the water, and that all of us points of light together are part of the same ocean of oneness which is God itself. We are nodes of Spirit energy within the greater indivisible field of energy which includes all that is.
If you and I, and us and them, are interrelated in cosmic community, then what we do to another we unerringly do to ourselves. When we consider and practice and with grace realize that “I am that,” we find we are all flowers in the garden of Heaven on Earth, some of us open, some of us opening, some of us going to seed, and there is no disharmony between different ages and shapes and sizes and colors.
From this place of the awareness of the other in oneself, the hallucination of our separateness slowly yet surely dissolves away. Our thoughts and words and actions are guided from the perspective of humility, kindness, and respect―from the experience of community. And this consensual reality we speak of, which is a hologram of our collective hallucination of separateness, shifts, reassembles, and settles into a new reality rooted in a cooperative way of being together.
This is nothing new; we have done this before. Maybe the circumstances are different, maybe they’re not, but it doesn’t matter. Our essence is pure, untouched, and its nature is to shine.
There is nothing wrong with the world. There is nothing “out there” that needs to be fixed. All is already in a state of perfection. Our challenge or, if you wish, our great opportunity, is awakening to who we really are and realizing our togetherness as sisters and brothers on this precious planet.
© 2011 James K. Papp. A writer and artist, Jim lives in Bellingham, Washington with his wife Lisa and their cat, Magic.