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Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Balzac and Today

This morning I found some challenging ideas in Balzac, the brilliant thinker from France who lived 1799-1850. He divided people into three basic groups.

The creature with simple consciousness only is a straw floating on a tide, it moves freely with every influence. The self-conscious man is a needle pivoted by its centre—fixed in one point but revolving freely on that. The man with Cosmic Consciousness is the same needle magnetized. It is still fixed by its centre, but besides that it points steadily to the north—it has found something real and permanent outside of itself toward which it cannot but steadily look.

The goal is to awaken out of the slumber of simple consciousness, move beyond the imprisonment of self-consciousness, and move into the expansive state of cosmic consciousness. He puts it pointedly:

The "resurrection" is not of the so-called dead, but of the living who are "dead" in the sense of never having entered upon true life.

It seems unlikely that one could leap from simple consciousness directly to the cosmic awareness, so the middle step is necessary. Few known people, however, seem to shift into the cosmic awareness. Those we know of are scattered throughout history. It is possible, and I think likely, that there are more than is known, quiet folks who were lights in their areas, villages or tribes but left no written record. 

It is also possible that in this very moment of history there are those who have been "resurrected" out of limited life to have touched the Light and Know beyond usual knowledge, know God. Some may be reticent to share for various reasons. If you are such a person, I urge you to share. The people of the world need Hope and Light and the path to their own "resurrection." 

Sunday, May 2, 2021

Walking What?

In the words of St. Francis,, “It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching.”

Oh how this quote sets ablaze something in me. It speaks to my long held understanding of how important, even urgent, it is to be congruent - to walk and be and model what we believe - to not say one thing while being another. 

Gandhi was reported to have said something like - if you want to know what I believe, watch how I walk my life. What an amazing place this world would be, if we mustered up the courage to live this congruently, this honestly.

I know I've written about this before, so excuse me if I'm being repetitive. Francis' words this morning hit my heart so deeply that I had to share his understanding of being one's teaching, of one's teaching actually being how we show up in life.

So, lets ask ourselves, "What am I teaching those who see me walk my life?  What did I teach yesterday? What shall I teach today?