Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Beyond 'Like' and 'Dislike'

The history of the ego is the history of self-protection based on a sense of identity uprooted from its Divine context. We are afraid because we feel alone and unprotected.

This is also true in the world of relationships, where the history of judging and feeling judged, rejecting and being rejected, liking some and not liking others creates a familiar world in which we feel relatively secure, while barring from our circle of intimacy those we feel do not belong in it either because they judge us or we judge them.

Such a history has been with most human beings for a very long time. As a result, although one's conscious self may intend to let go of the concepts of 'like' and 'dislike,' it is often very difficult to do. If we hold these concepts to be valid, then we have a reason for avoiding or remaining apart from others - a reason that we believe is valid. As a result, we restrict our world to only those relationships in which we feel comfortable or in which we feel a sufficient common ground.

However, the life of the sacred is calling to us. It is asking us to redefine what 'common ground' is. It is asking us to no longer believe the reasons we tell ourselves for excluding anyone from our hearts.

This universal love to which we are being called cannot separate itself from anyone because there is no one to whom we are not connected. There is no one whom we are not part of. And yet the ego knows nothing of these things. It still thinks that there are reasons to reject some and to accept others. It maintains its own way of doing things - a way that is based on the history of duality and of separation from the unity of life.

Often, souls come to a place in their spiritual journey where the desire to live as a soul comes into conflict with the residual desire to live as an ego. Then, there are justifications, rationalizations, reasons, and so forth that we use to tell ourselves why we still believe in separation from others. Often, we are content to cling to the old premises, for example, "It is not I that cannot accept them. It is they who cannot accept me." This, of course, is a false premise for closing one's heart, since love does not depend upon two; it only depends upon one. One can still love in the presence of not-love in another. Whether our love can be expressed in a manifested joining, however - that depends upon two. But love itself depends only upon one.

When the decision to love without exception becomes an inner necessity, the ego begins to lose its grip upon the daily consciousness. Sometimes there is a vascillation back and forth between the old ways of fear and judgment and the new ways of the soul, but progress is made according to the degree to which one no longer believes one's former rationales.

Taking responsibility for one's own consciousness is an important part of forward movement in the healing of relationships. Finally, one must move away from believing that anyone else can 'make us' feel a certain way. When that premise can be let go of, the heart can breathe a sigh of relief. Then, everything can be seen and felt as a choice, and each soul who makes progress along a spiritual path can learn to choose with greater wisdom, greater love, and greater self-awareness.

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