The Mirror Covid 19 Holds Up For All Of Us.


Hello, friends– and
even more than that. I realize that if you are
listening to my sharings that our hearts and minds are
attuned to very similar things, and in that way we
are kind of family. So hello, family. It is unquestionably a
really sober time now with the pandemic of COVID-19. And I know, for me, I see very
clearly the kind of mirror it’s holding up to us. And that’s what I want to
share with you today about– my way of understanding
that mirror. First, I have to
admit on Sunday, for the first time in a
very long time in my life, I had quite the nightmare. Sunday’s four or five days ago. I woke up out of the nightmare,
and it was a nightmare– without giving broad details– in which I couldn’t
reach anyone by phone. I was almost barely
adequately dressed. I had no luggage. And I kept saying,
I have no money. But I knew, also, I had
a wallet in my pocket. It’s not an unfamiliar theme– the theme of not being
able to reach people– not being able to figure
out how the phone works. And for me, I understand this
dream is pointing to me about– it’s an exaggeration of
a sense of separateness. It’s an exaggeration
of a sense of being disconnected and
unable to connect. And it tells me that
I have been living from too much of an
individualistic, separate self point of view. And it wakes me up to that. But the extent of this as a
nightmare was very different, and I believe it reflects in
a sense not only what I know about my own ability to be
individualistic and behave from a kind of separate
self consciousness– or least think from that place– and that this is
what’s happening now and has always been happening
in collective humanity. And I woke up this
morning from a dream that brought me to a sense
of profound heartache. And of course, I took that
feeling into my morning practice and dived into
it and let it take me where it wanted to take me. So my heartache is that I
think as we face this pandemic that we attribute
to a virus, it’s actually holding up a
mirror for us human beings– that, in actuality,
we’re the pandemic. At the level at which we
function in ego-based based separate self consciousness– which developmentally
all of us have to have– all of us live in. At that level, we do not operate
with any sense of harmony with nature. Every other creature is
individual in its own way– from a virus to a
bacteria who are perhaps the most adaptable
lifeforms on the planet– to human beings, who are
incredibly adaptable– precisely because we live in
separate self consciousness. We believe in me
and mine and ours. And unlike every
other creature– that is individual but is also
unconsciously, instinctually obedient to nature– cannot violate
nature– and we can. And we do. Perhaps 50 to 100,000 years
ago, our consciousness– as separate self individuals– took root. We had to live as dyads for
the procreative process. It became much more
survival-possible to live in small groups. We could protect our children. We could feed ourselves
collectively– protect ourselves
from other creatures more effectively
in small groups. Then we began to be able to
create thoughts and belief systems that would allow
us to gather together in even larger groups. And the larger the groups
became, the more separate the groups became. And they began to trade together
but also compete together in war with each other. And everywhere we went,
we ravaged the earth– by 10,000 years ago, we had made
almost all the large mammals on the planet extinct. In the course of human history– I don’t know this as a fact–
but I would hazard a guess that the suffering any human being
has felt throughout life– 1 generation ago, 10 generations
ago, 100 generations ago, 1,000 generations ago– the primary level of that
suffering was interpersonal. It was between people. It was inflicted by one
person on another person or on one group
on another group. And we have been the most
efficient and continuous exterminators of
our own species. It’s quite possible
that human beings have killed more human
beings than any diseases ever killed human beings. And so here we are. And we think that this
pandemic is something that’s happening to us
because of nature, but it’s happening
to us and it’s holding up a mirror to us– that we have not learned that
our consciousness gives us the opportunity not to
triumph over nature– not to successfully keep
populating the world– encroaching on natural
environments more and more and more– which is what puts
us in contact with the animals that harbor the
organisms that are the basis for these very serious
illnesses like MERS and SARA and Ebola. And now, thank God this
pandemic is relatively– relatively nonlethal– troubling for sure. Many lives will be lost. But compared to
what could happen and what someday
may happen, it’s really, really not very bad. There’s enormous paranoia now–
enormous unnecessary fear. But still, the mirror
that we need to look at and the heartbreak that
I feel is the heartbreak of a sense of the
shame of this species that we don’t let ourselves see
what we are doing to each other and what we have
done to the world– that we don’t have a
resiliency of relationship– that we aren’t heartful
with each other– that me and mine and ours
triumphs over a relationship within each of us
to everyone else and to the magnificence
of this planet and the life that’s on it. And this mirror will be held
up to us again and again and again. And we have to decide whether
we’re going to come home to a place inside of ourselves
that is our relationship to everyone and everything
and celebrate our scientific achievement as the capacity to
understand nature and become devoted to her and obedient to
her and co-steward with her– this planet– or whether
we’re going to continue to use our minds to triumph and
keep inventing more and more and more devices
that are divisive– as the paradox of
social media is. We have less and less
direct personal contact– more and more separateness. The possibility of expressing– not the reality that
you would feel person to person with a human being– but the imaginary
world that people can express with a few
words and a photograph– and a selfie here and there. Well, my friends
separate self behavior– individualistic
behavior– is natural. We had a nine-month-old
at the last seminar. Parents that had been
both part of the work– this child will grow up in
a family where both mother and father will have more
consciousness than many children’s parents
would have had– and at the same
time, those parents have strains and stresses and
tensions– like all of us have. And that baby will feel
that and adapt to that, but we could sit– the 70 of us or so
that were there– and see– this baby has
no assemblage point. There’s no me. There’s no separate self. It doesn’t know that
its daddy is Swiss and its mommy is French. It doesn’t know that the
language it’s going to learn it will probably be French–
and then maybe he’ll learn some English, too–
because they speak English, and it’s useful in our world. He doesn’t know
that he’ll inherit some of the collective fears and
judgments and cultural hatreds or distrusts that belonged
to groups of human beings. But he will. He’s going to assemble. I’m not going to give his name,
because we’ll keep him private. But he’s going to
assemble into an ego operating from separate
self consciousness by the age of 9 or 10– like all of us do. And from that point on,
it’s going to be me and mine and ours until– until– the true work
of education can begin. We must educate ourselves
for relational consciousness. We must educate as
early as possible for self awareness
that allows us to– not assemble around me and ego– but to assemble around
awareness itself– the ability to have a
constructive generative relationship to scary
feelings instead of defending against them and
blaming others and polarizing and separating even
more and being even more individualistic. And likewise, we
need to teach that we don’t want to be the victims
of our conceptual minds. We do not want our
conceptual thinking head to rule our heart. We want it to be a
servant of our heart. We want to be able to say,
I– me does not have me– my aware self has me. My worst self uses me as an
instrument for relationship– not for individualistic
separating behavior. Even though we all must
operate as individual– and therefore at least at
the body level separate– at the level of our hearts,
we are not separate. At the level of our bodies,
we are not separate. And that’s what coronavirus
is showing us right now. We share the same air. We’re really not separate. And the way we have built
our financial community and our economies on
continuous consumerism is being shown to us now
as something that doesn’t have a deep resiliency– that isn’t adequate– that
we all need to be able to put our roots down in the land where
we live and find our food from those places to a much greater
degree than we are doing right now– that so many things do
not need to be necessary– that so many things
that we create are not really necessary. And yet they pollute
and flood our bodies as well as all of the earth
with too much plastic, as one example. All of the these things we know,
but it’s time for us to have a collective, species-wise
sense of atonement– a sense that is appropriate
to have a bit of shame– have a deep shame– about what human beings– Homo sapiens sapiens– has
brought about on this planet and to commit ourselves
to the kind of path– and it is a difficult,
challenging path– to learn to be 100% responsible
for your emotional reactions– to stop blaming others– to stop believing in the
division between nations and religions. I was just in
Israel where there’s a collision of three major
religious traditions, and not one person there
was ever born Jewish. Not one was born Christian or
Muslim or Armenian or Arab– not one. That’s pure enculturation–
that’s training. And even if that’s
inevitable in the beginning, the real education is
relational education– consciousness that relationships
are living things– that relationships
are in service to our deepest intelligence. They’re in service
to love itself. They’re in service to
the coherence of love that can unite us all. And what kind of
socioeconomic, financial world would we create if
we first educate– right from the beginning– for relational
consciousness and an ability to tune into the coherence
of love with others? And you can see why
my heart breaks. We’re so far, far
away from that. And yet we each must
do our best to overcome our individualistic behavior. So right now, don’t buy more
toilet paper than you need. Don’t empty the markets
to protect yourself. Think about what you’re doing– that what you buy needs to
be enough for everybody else. And even if you
run out, then you can get creative
in some other way. If everyone of us goes
shopping with the idea, I’m taking just enough for
me– am I leaving enough behind for everyone else
I can think of– you will walk around with your
heart open instead of in fear. There are so many ways we
can help each other now. This disease– thank
God– is not so terrible. Most of us are going to
get sick over the next year at some point– year and a half– that’s why it’s
called a pandemic. And then we’re going to recover. And some of us are
going to be very sick and suffer for a while. And some of us are going to die. Yes, that’s right– that’s
what’s going to happen– and it never has to
happen with fear– not even a ripple of
fear is necessary. You have a choice to
rest in your heart and in heart intelligence– and have a broken heart. Because you will do your best,
and it will seem like nothing. It’ll seem like
pissing in the wind– you know– compared to
the degree to which we operate in such a separate way. So that’s the mirror that this
pandemic is holding up for us– or a part of the mirror. It’s an invitation. I hope we learn from it. The next pandemic
could decimate us. I hope we learn from it. And in the meantime, you can
only make progress in yourself at the speed that you can. But make it your priority– that you will learn to
understand every thought that enters your mind– that splits– divides– your mind so that you’re divided
in yourself against anyone else– your spouse,
your child, a neighbor– anyone– and then to say,
I will not divide my mind with my own thinking anymore. Because that divides my heart,
and that closes my heart. And I’ll take responsibility
for my beliefs and thoughts as soon as I feel the slightest
shutting down of my aliveness– that flow of love that
is always available. And that I will not– I will not– keep fostering
anxiety and fear that is all rooted in separate
self consciousness. It’s the only path
that’s possible. To love love with each other is
the most wondrous path of all. If God created us–
or nature created us– as conscious beings,
then fear is love’s ally. Love says to fear. If you close his heart–
if fear closes your heart– open your heart. Now your capacity for
love is more authentic and deeper and richer. Fear is the ally of love,
so work with your fear. Understand other
people are in fear. Have compassion. Have compassion for yourself–
and gentleness and tenderness. That’s the only path I can
imagine that will help us. It’s going to be a very slow
process before what I’m talking about– which so, so
many of us understand– will actually enter into
our educational process. We will really train parents. Maybe two years
of university will be about relational
consciousness– child development– what
it means to raise a baby– long before you
learn anything that has to do with math or
science or engineering or any of those
left brain processes that do not teach emotional
and spiritual intelligence. So look at the mirror– we are the pandemic. Separate self, ego-based,
human consciousness– 7.7 billion with no discussion
of how to limit population– none– no discussion
about the responsibility of how many children we have. None of that’s happening. It was– it may be
happening somewhere– but it’s not happening at
the level where we are going to say, 50 years from now– 100 years from
now– we’re planning to be a population of no
more than 5 billion people. And we’ll adapt our
economies to that– and so forth and so forth. The actualization of all
that is immensely complex, but it cannot happen until there
are self-aware people taking responsibility for
individualistic behavior– separating behavior. Nothing will be happen– not in any meeting,
not in any convention, not in any political
organization– until that one
primary relationship to your developmental separate
self consciousness is seen as the place where you have
to work to outgrow it– like this little child. Hopefully by the
time it is 15, it will have far more emotional
intelligence than most of us have. Hopefully by the
time it’s in its 20s, it will be using meditation
and contemplation to– not get enlightened but to
understand profoundly every place where he
closes his heart– shuts down a little bit of
love in any relationship– and then imagine who he’s going
to be and what kind of woman he’s going to find as a
mirror to that consciousness– and what kind of children
they’re going to have– long, long past when most of
us are gone from this planet. So have a broken heart,
but don’t feel powerless. Feel the shame of a
species that has run away with a sense of separateness
without understanding the oneness in which it lives– the oneness of life. But don’t be self-attacking. Take positive action. Make the best you can. We are all going to die. Let’s die haven’t
created as much love in our relationships– as much
family in our relationships– as we possibly can.

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