Be the change that you wish to see in the world.
People don’t ever really change.
The other day a friend said this to me:
“People don’t ever really change.”
He was right, of course. We always are what we are. We have the reactions we have to life, to people. They may be less or more, depending on the situation, depending on how much sleep we’ve had, depending on all the circumstances of our life. Our ego reaction is our ego reaction, for better or for worse.
What can change, though, is the belief that this is what we are.
My friend who uttered his belief in non-change sees the people in his world as flawed, imperfect, selfish and boorish, and sees himself as being at the mercy of these changeless beings. Of course this means he sees himself, too, as flawed, imperfect, etc.
This is not what we are. I am not the ego. I am not this surface level of reactivity. What I am in the depth of my Being is a beautiful and profound expression of Truth and love and of God in this world, daily rediscovering Itself through my eyes and reflected in the eyes of others.
This is what we are. In spite of our beliefs to the contrary. In spite of how many times we behave in ways that seem to belie this truth. In spite of how many times those around us behave in ways that seem to belie this truth.
Most of us have been raised in a culture that discounts, ignores or demeans the spiritual level of existence. We are taught that we are at the mercy of the world, that we must conquer aspects of the world in order to be happy. We are taught that life is suffering and pain and that we are, by and large, powerless to change anything.
When we learn to meditate, we drop out of this individual experience of the world and into an experience of Oneness. We drop out of our identity as separate and apart from, and into our identity as Totality – nature Itself. Rather than unity and oneness as mere intellectual concepts, we begin actually to experience the feeling of oneness within ourselves. And having felt ourselves as this oneness even once, we can own it. It is ours for the asking; and from that time forward, identifying as oneness becomes a choice.
The ego may react as it always has reacted, but now we have a choice as to whether or not we identify as the reactivity. We can watch these thoughts, feelings, impulses pass through us without having to take them as definition of what we are.
Every day, every moment, I have the choice to see the wholeness of life, or the separation. I can see the flawed history of an individual or I can see her as an individual expression of the divine spark. I can see everyone in my life as separate, different and apart from, or as my brother, my sister, my Self in another body.
We all are evolving, always. Progressive change is in fact what life is doing, always. When we look for it, in ourselves and those around us, we will begin to see it.
Today I will remind myself that enlightenment is a choice, that love is a choice, that seeing God in the face of my fellows is a choice, that seeing God in myself is a choice, and I will make this choice again and again until it becomes my natural way through the world.
Blue glass wind chimes, ambrotype, backyard