Last year I lived in a completely secular cooperatively owned housing complex. Each person was there for their own reason, with the common denominator being affordability. Each brought, consciously or otherwise, their own set of enacted values which, as a whole, shaped the character and life of the community. I learned in spades the difference that each individual choice and action made in the quality of life and relationships. Careful attention to full awareness of the other and to actions that strengthened relationships and built community yielded palpable and tangible changes in the nature and spirit of daily life. Attitudes of selfishness and defense contributed equally powerful results in another direction.
There is a sweet spot of rest and action for our spirit. It rides the crest of the wave of creation – the push of energy into the void, the place where sound and light – the Word of Creation and the Spirit that carries and speaks it – manifest as something new, another beauty, in the world as we know it, the world as it becomes.
I can perceive myself as alone on that crest, as an isolated individual, a singular atom or particle that must fight for protection, the avoidance of destruction in what seems like a violent rush forward into the unknown. My action response is willfulness. Willfulness pushes out to force into being what I hope will be a safe and protective space. Willfulness grabs for resources that I think will sustain me against the rush. In willfulness, I believe I am using my own power to protect and preserve myself and my little space against a scary and unpredictable world.
But the truth is, I have no singular power. I possess nothing that is uniquely mine. And my only achievement when I believe and act otherwise is to create an insubstantial lie, an illusion of security that will crash, burn and drift to nothingness, certainly at the time of my physical demise if not before.
There is a paradox of singularity and oneness on that glorious wave crest. I am, indeed, a spot and spark of awareness, a phosphorescence – something perhaps analogous to the bioluminescent organisms in the bay at Vieques, off Puerto Rico. My actions and intentions matter. They matter because I am, whether or not I like it or believe it, connected to the whole.
When I act alone with willfulness, I create a small scar, something that does not fit and flow in the creative surge. I hinder the curve and curl in my brief moment. And I may destroy the hope and creative activity of those around me, all those with whom I am in direct or indirect relationship.
But when I recognize and rest in my connection to broader spirit and act from a posture of willingness, I flow forward with confidence. And I am aware of the others flowing forward around me. I see their spark, I understand our connection in the wave. I realize that beauty and community depend on and respond to both my restful connection and my acts of intention. I contribute to the luminous glow, the shape and texture of the curl as creation advances.
We are not, as we falsely tell ourselves, alone under the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. We are one under the Tree of Life. Willfulness blinds us to this truth, throwing up barriers of fear that cause pain and brokenness in our immediate and extended relationships.
Willingness opens to the whole, with an understanding that our creative power is one, a point of lovely and loving energetic awareness on the leading edge of the complete breath of God/Creator/Spirit/Mind/Source as it pushes forward in its surge to beauty and being on the edge of the void. Rest in the flow. Open your light with willingness, yielding up its luminescence to join with others, as far as your relaxed awareness will take you on this ride to all that will be.
© Two Trees in the Garden. Feel free to quote, as useful, with proper reference.