|29 Nov 2003 @ 16:38, by Craig Lang|
These are the dark days of November in the northern hemisphere. the days grow ever shorter as the winter solstice approaches. A cold wind bites from the north, often laden with flakes of ice and snow. It is a time of starkness, a time of gray. And there is the sense at this time of year, that life is at its most tenuous.
At this time of year, too, I find that healing is often the strongest. There is both the need for healing, and the calling up of the reservoir of inner strength that helps bring healing where it is needed. It is that inner resource that only comes when we "let go, let God". And in light of this, I often wonder about the state of things around me. Why are we so divided? Why is there so much acrimony - in the world at large, and even within our closer knit communities.
At this time of year, during healing work, or just while talking with neighbors, I notice confrontation, advocacy and resistance. It is a polarity between dark and light, progression and reaction, right and left, male and female, yin and yang. And in all of this, what seems to get lost is love. Repeatedly, I am reminded of the teachings of my teacher in the eastern tradition, which inspires the comments to follow.
On more than one occasion, I have noted people saying something like: "I get it, why can't [so-and-so] see it, too?" The idea that the person has is usually an extremely good one. It is generally a new idea, and with any new idea comes change - some form of transition (albeit, probably a very needed one). With advocacy of change comes resistance. Resistance brings counter-resistance: pushing and pushing back. Polarity deepens, and the issue becomes like two sides of a teeter-totter, both sides in opposition, yet also in balance. The harder we fight, the more energy we give to the opposition. Like a bar magnet, or like opposite charges, we attract the very forces we oppose.
How can we move beyond the gridlock? How do we get off the teeter-totter? How do yin and the yang combine to yield harmony?
A lot of ideas come up, but often what I am taught is that we are approaching the time for transcendence, the time when "the lion lies down with the lamb." This is the time when compassion for the souls of those opposed to you becomes more important than the reason for that opposition. When the two sides can combine views to reach a higher view, emergence has occurred.
Most often used seems to be the chakra metaphor. In this model, the biggest struggle in the present day, at least as I understand it, seems to be between the third and fourth chakra life-modes. The third chakra represents the ego-based, service to self world of the corporate cubicle. This is the world of business-success-oriented activity. It is the world of money, and it is also probably the world of military aggression. It is often associated with the west, but I suspsect that it is in most/all societies, at the present time. Growth at the expense of the Earth, self at the expense of others, etc... And so, the imperitive is to transition to at least a fourth-chakra level of awareness.
I am taught that, in the eastern tradition, The fourth chakra life-mode is generally one of service, a life of the heart. Volunteering and pacifism - both are powerful and noble ideals, and clearly superior to greed and service-to-self of the lower centers. Yet they are still ideals, and in advocating them, we generate opposition. Anti-war is still "anti", and such a noble progressivism implies that there is a regressive darker-side that it opposes. Struggle energizes the opposition, and the two sides of the teeter-totter balance out once again.
So, how can we transcend this? What is above the fourth chakra world? Perhaps the most immediate answer is "the fifth chakra world". In the eastern tradition, the fifth chakra is one of devotion, communication and life purpose. It is the life-mode in which we see transcendence of the polarity of struggle by the understanding that comes from God. It does not follow logic, but only love. It is not the love that comes from one's own heart, but that which comes from a greater heart. It is not service from one's self, but from a higher power through one's self.
Above all else, I am told, it is allowing one's self to see that the other side is human, too. And it is an incredibly difficult thing to do, especially in this time of economic, political and religious division. Yet it is at this time when understanding and harmony become the most important. Now, it is all the more imperative that the "lion lie down with the lamb".
In the words of the teacher who told me these words, this will be the time when enemies become friends, swoards become plowshares and war becomes peace. It is then that we will see the emergence. Then and only then will we (all of us) have won.
Beyond the fifth center, of course are the sixth and seventh - and presumably their corresponding life-modes will one day be realized. But for now, the struggle is to save ourselves and our world, and in the process, to come to know and love ourselves. It requires a devotion to a higher power and a compassion of and for all of us on the pale blue dot we call Earth.