So a co-worker messaged me this meme the other day and I have to say that it is the epitome of truth about spirituality;
You see, when you start to change your life by changing your thoughts and therefore your actions, you get living examples of the meaning of duality. Duality is simply explained as the opposition, or the contrast of two concepts. Spiritual awareness means that you get the understanding that we are all connected, but you also get the understanding that not everyone understands that. The whole damn thing is paradoxical at best.
Do I strive to one day be as enlightened and live as balanced as the Dalai Lama? Certainly, but I’m over here having online arguments with strangers about GMO’s and corruption. I fight establishment over illegal oppression and human rights daily, and then there is the fact that I don’t even want to be around 1/4th of my extended family. Yet I still write about being positive, seeking God, and practice transcendental meditation.
When I wake up in the morning, I walk right into duality. I drive with the windows down feeling the cool morning air on my face to go feed and groom my horses on an estate that headquarters my equestrian management company. Then I return to a beautiful home and get ready to go to work in a career that I am passionate about. I come home to a marriage and a son who’s love is beyond my wildest imagination. My toddler son and I go on enchanting adventures where we watch the butterflies and dragonflies, and generally soak in God’s goodness daily. Yet in between all of that there are numerous pockets of time where I hate nearly everything.
When you first “wake up” and become aware that you can have, be, and do whatever you put your mind to and allow for yourself, you may cause you to get very angry at yourself. You look around at the world that you have created as your reality, and you may find yourself knee deep in some unbecoming personal patterns. To make matters worse, you begin to observe other people, both inside and outside of your life, and you may become upset with yourself for allowing who you’ve allowed to be a part of your life for too long. You look around and can immediately see this guy over there doing this bad thing, or that one over there saying that horrible statement. This group of folks over here walking around completely unaware of how their actions are hurting others. You see people not respecting children, family members not respecting other family members, drama, chaos, and the horror of seeing strangers spew hatred at one another on internet threads like insane keyboard commandos. All of which, you also realize, pales in comparison to the true suffering and starvation in other parts of the world. All you can think of is that this isn’t how it’s supposed to be! We are not here to suffer, and in fact we create our own misery by failing to take care of ourselves and each other.
As a positive living blogger I want to tell all of my readers that once you are on this path it’s all roses all of the time, but then I would be lying. I fight, I cry, I yell. I sign petitions, I cut off people that are deliberately hurtful, and keep as far away from mainstream anything as I can. I do all of this because I want to live a positive and healthy life, but I’m awake and therefore blindingly aware of all things that inhibit any of us from doing so. Since I am so aware of these incongruences for us to live a creative and free life, by my very nature I must do something about it to help create the change that I wish to see in the world. Therefore, I am constantly having to stand up for myself and others against those that are so robotic that their common sense has actually dried up, and I’m left to wonder if we are already living in the zombie apocalypse. After which, I go and meditate. I pray to God. I break out the crystals, I light the sage stick or I chant in Korean. Guess what? All of it means that I’m on the right path, and if you identify with any of this at all then so are you.
Here’s the thing, being able to “see” the good means that you are going to be able to “see” the bad. That is what awareness does, because it’s awareness. Being spiritually aware means that we have to learn how to manage our reactions to the “bad” things. We can’t change it all, and in fact that isn’t even our purpose, but we have a choice as to whether we come here and create “Heaven on Earth” or we create destruction.
How I see it, it all comes down to balance. We must allow others the Free Will that they are sent here with, but hold them responsible when their Free Will impedes on our Free Will. Then we have to butt out when their Free Will has nothing to do with us or how we manage our lives. For me this is a great challenge mostly because I feel like taking some people by the shoulders and shaking sense into them since their apathy directly effects what the quality of all of our lives, and our children’s lives be in the future. Maybe you’ve experienced this yourself on a different level.
What I have found out, then forgot, and now remember again is that it’s the subtle, consistent and most importantly, persistent presence of your own awareness that will change
your life the world. Lighthouses don’t wander all over the ocean looking for ships to save, they stand steady and the ships are able to find them. Getting angry over injustice is NEVER wrong. Not doing anything positive and productive with that anger is. Same for depression. It’s only wrong if you stay there. Meditation and the subsequent awareness that you gain, will actually guarantee that you to find plenty in life to get angry or depressed over; but meditation is also what will keep you from staying angry and depressed. That awareness can bring into your experience everything that is beautiful, successful, and loving about this physical experience. That is duality.
When it comes to awareness and the pain that it can bring, it should be noted that you can go any way that you want to go at anytime. You can keep expanding for the good, or you can quit. Totally your choice. I know all about wanting to quit. Just know that you can never go back though. If you do quit I mean. You cannot undo awareness. Ever. What you know now is what you will always know. The only thing that you can ever do is chose to stop seeking awareness; but I can promise that is what leads to illness of both mind and body. Failing to feed your spirit the awareness that it needs and deserves is the root of all dis-ease and long term anger and depression. Deliberately not seeking awareness will bankrupt you, both literally and figuratively. Just know that awareness is within your control and your control only.
Just remember, Spirituality isn’t all serious business. It actually isn’t business at all! Higher levels of awareness where the pain is acknowledged but not held on to, feels really free and loving and sometimes a little naughty. A book on one of my shelves has a cover picture of a monk walking contemplatively back to his monastery holding a bag of Burger King. (Most monks are vegetarian.) My favorite priest smoked Marlboros and drank Jack Daniels. My favorite blogger is a vegetarian who loves bacon. There are no real rules to this stuff other than to love all of God’s creatures and to keep going. In between time, anger is fine. So is frustration. So is wanting to give up from time to time, or secretly wishing your arch enemy a lifetime of restaurant tables with uneven legs. That’s called being human and it doesn’t make you any less spiritual. Just know that all of it means that you are expanding and are seeing first hand what is no longer acceptable to you. So keep expanding your awareness to seek what can make it better. Whatever “it” means to you, and then be shiny, and persistent. Like a lighthouse.
Over to you now! Tell me, what is your best example of awareness that also kind of sucked?