Thursday, August 17, 2006
After a spirited discussion about what's going on in the world the other morning at the local coffee shop, I was walking home and thinking about the whole labeling thing that goes on in such discussions. The labels are most often "liberal" and "conservative," which have become difficult and charged over time due to overuse and the inherent limitations of such labels.
So I was thinking, what term does describe my current world view - the perspective from which I view events, politics, human behavior, etc.
The term that surfaced and seemed right (for right now, anyway) was "expansive evolutionary." What I mean by this is that I tend to take an expansive view of things, I tend to be generally progressive, and I tend to view human development as an evolutionary process - one that goes through stages and moved toward greater complexity and levels of expression.
I believe that all of humanity continues to evolve through a process of creating and responding to greater and greater conditions of complexity. I think that in this regard, Spiral Dynamics is right on the money in describing the different "Levels of Existence" from the primitive and simple to the more complex and emerging. This leads me to see people as existing at certain levels of existence which tend to match the living conditions in which they find themselves. When different levels of existence come into contact, there is often conflict, due to their differing world views. Each group sees the others as unreasonable (or worse) for not seeing things in the same way. Communication is difficult, and often breaks down -- and this can lead to conflict.
So the question in, say, the Middle East, is not will all parties come to their senses and see the world as I do, but is more about how each party sees the world and can ways of communicating which recognize and honor these different world views be developed and used effectively. In other words, peace can't be imposed from without, especialy by those who have different levels of thinking than the participants in the conflict. Thee two somply will not value the same things in the same way.
I also believe that what we often see as negative situations are often the device through which people (from individuals to families to societies) grow to greater levels of complexity. This is a mostly unconscious process toward growth - a process that becomes more conscious as levels of existence become more complex. At the individual level, you may sabotage your success in order to put yourself into a place where you have to make a choice - and the possible choices will include ones that lead to your growth. Make that choice and you rise above the level of the problem to a new level - make a different choice and you stay at the level of the problem. Societies do the same thing. This is how we grow in an evolutionary way - the better choices lead to the emergence greater levels of complexity and potential, and humanity evolves.
So the earth can be seen as going through "growing pains" that will lead to a greater awareness and greater abilities to deal with problems and issues -- IF we survive the growing pains.
I think that people are capable of great evolutionary leaps in awareness -- but that we rarely make them on collective levels. Collectively, we tend to move forward in a more ponderous, trial and error fashion, needing things to get pretty bad before we are forced to make changes, evolutionary or otherwise.
Yet, we live in a time when the living conditions are rapidly becoming more complex and the demands on humanity are reaching crisis levels in some areas (overpopulation, global warming, political vision, and more). We are called to "evolve" and emerge more rapidly. Those at the leading edge of complexity as it has emerged have a great responsibility to be leaders and examples in this time - the leadership examples must be loving, intelligent, practical, and compassionate (a mix requiring a capacity for great complexity). They must also bring a mature spirituality into the heart of their efforts - one that is free of the trappings of traditional religion.
The goal of a sustainable earth which works for everyone is emerging as the clarion call for the 21st Century. How successfully we collectively approach that goal will be determined by the degree to which those who can be labeled "Expansive Evolutionaries" emerge and come to action.
Love and Light,
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
The meaning of peace - real peace, not merely a cease-fire - is in the realization of Power. We fight when we feel threatened, when we feel weak. Even if the idea to fight comes from the desire to conquer a "weaker" opponent, that idea comes from a consciousness of fear - of essential powerlessness.
Peace is an inner consciousness of the realization of divine Power -- and of one's connection to Source. The belief in this connection is a belief in plenty, a belief in love, a belief in oneness. You do not go to war from a belief in oneness. You do not rob another from a belief in oneness. You do not abuse another from a belief in oneness.
A religion teaching oneness cannot be used as an excuse for a religious war. Yet, oneness is our essential nature, our birthright, our essence. Failure to realize this is to live from a consciousness of separation - a lonely place to be.
Unless and until the belief in oneness becomes more pervasive, we are doomed to conflict, war, terrorism, and grief - with an occasional cease fire. A cease-fire is a pause between battles, not a sense of peace. A cease fire seems to recognize conflict as natrual, or at least inevitable, and is a temporary lapse in that violent state.
Peace is a recognition of Power and a choice to live from that powerful awareness -- that you are connected to Spirit, that you are divine in nature, that you are an eternal being at the soul level. From such beliefs spring the decision to live in peace -- to BE peace.
This planet, if it is to have true peace, will have it as a result of the decision of each person to BE peace. More of us are making that decision.
For those interested, a gathering to explore the true meaning of peace is being held at the Westlake Church of Religious Science on August 17th at 7:00 PM. Come and join in a celebration of oneness and in setting a personal intention to BE peace in your life.
Love and Light,