Saturday, September 6, 2014
A Week in a Life
Singing River stands still and silent glistening in the sunlight of early morning. She’s not a person per se but a beautiful old tree. I call her Singing River because when the sea breeze blows and rustles the leaves in that beautiful tree, the sound, I compare to that of a singing river. I’ve loved that tree since the moment I laid eyes on her and I’ve watched her closely this week as she begins to shed her leaves in preparation for Autumn and then Winter. Oh how I will miss her song but I’ll listen tonight when the sun starts to set and the breeze kicks up and I will smile. Oh that might sound strange but this is my life and I can wax poetic and unique as I choose to.
It’s been an interesting week of observation. Beginning on a holiday, Labor Day in which I fortunately did not have to labor much other than wrapping up final school preparations for my 11 year old daughter about to begin her first day in Middle School and my middle daughter about to begin her sophomore year in a new High School very near to my home. The busyness of preparations made me tired but glad I was to make the preparations for these oh so very important days in the youth of my children. Funny it was that my High Schooler, ready for her first day in a new school was greeted at 7:15 am by our city’s finest with a message that school had been closed down for the day. The outgoing child that she is, she learned from others near by that a message had been sent that the school had been closed abruptly for the day due to a threat. Sadly, someone hacked a student’s school email account to inform the school that explosives were planted around the school and any survivors would be shot by automatic rifle. Interesting, I thought aside from the ego’s emotions of fear and assumption about who would do such a thing. I could make assumptions from here to the moon, become angry, upset and accusatory about the unknown individual who perhaps unwittingly committed an act of terrorist threat against a simple institution housing nothing but kids who wanted to socialize and finish their required education. I’m in no position to judge because I’ve got no facts about who the individual was who made the threats or why. I thought about it and then ultimately decided it wasn’t worth the energy. Thankfully, the authorities and school officials had the matter well in hand and all students, faculty and surrounding residents were fortunately and ultimately safe from any harm other than inconvenience.
I can’t help but wonder about the person who hacked the email account and made the threat. I wonder if the consequences of his or her actions were even remotely considered. Was it a mere child incapable of such responsible behavior as considering consequences before actions or was it an adult suffering the same malady? Perhaps it was someone who didn’t care or was incapable of caring and that lead me to other thoughts. Are we raising a nation of sociopaths unable to grasp delayed gratification, hell-bent on attention, vengeance or who knows what? Is it a problem or is it just part of a much larger plan to which I have no full awareness.? I mean, what if this place – Earth, in any city, contains what we might judge both good and bad for the sake of understanding there is a good and bad? I don’t have empiracle evidence of anything and any judgments I might make would amount to pure conjecture or assumption in the absence of facts. In the end, this time, all were physically safe in their existence here.
In another interaction on another day this week I witnessed the judgment of others in action. Listened to what was said and the judgments made and knowing the details and individuals involved in this certain string of interactions, I saw something else and I heard something else from two interactors and an observer…I too observed the interactions of all 3 and had an entirely different perspective – one of understanding all parties involved and I saw…I saw the lessons each was presented and how they went about learning them…or in this case, perhaps not. Certainly it was more of a trivial matter but how many trivial lessons unlearned add up to an unsatisfactory life? I don’t know the answer and can only assume, run simulations in my mind based on my own perceptions and observations only to arrive at still yet another provisional truth. And so, I pointed out alternative perspectives, expressed gratitude for the sharing and then was acutely reminded to be careful of my judgements because no matter how smart I think I may be on a topic, I do not have all of the facts and can’t. It isn’t my lot in life to have all of the facts about every interaction there is.
Even still, I do have a framework of understanding. That understanding is simply that we project our consciousness with intent into this dimension for an experience. The less contact we have with the consciousness beyond the veil of ego, the less capable we are to understand the things that might matter more to us than superficial consciousness or instant self-gratification. Sometimes I think if we could learn delayed self-gratification, learn how to turn to the peace inside and entertain our truest nature in terms of the feeling inside us all that is more accurate than any words we could pull out of the vast array of them at our disposal to define, think or judge a thing, we could focus our energy instead on understanding and hearing the Truth. But were not all interested in Truth, I know as fact. The Just World Hypothesis is a mistake to hold onto if one is interested at all in any form of happiness. This is not a just world and it is not a just world intentionally, but why? Do you ever wonder? There is a reason and it isn’t random chance that the things we find ourselves engaged in occur.
Singing River has come to life in a gentle sea breeze outside and I contemplate work and the things that seem so urgent and important. Deadlines loom and they can be quite stressful but only to the extent that what you deal with is believed to be impossible. If they do seem impossible it may be time to entertain different work or from a different place within it…and we can change our place within any construct by merely shifting our thoughts and becoming aware that we each hold the little “c” consciousness of the ego which is a tiny part of our much larger Big “C” Consciousness of existence. I keep coming back to that but why? What is my own mind pushing me to seek? I know the answer and that is understanding. I seek to understand so that I may lend to this world much needed Compassion and love. And I do love so much about this world and the amazing human beings existing within it. I see roles and plays and the themes they represent for our higher learning and growth but these things took years to understand. And I’m not even close to being done yet.
I wander back to the daily work-a-day existence and all I see around me are amazing human beings whether they love or hate me, admire or despise me. I still think they are wonderful expressions of the same Source Consciousness that I too am a part of. I hear the voice of a little child playing and I wonder what knowledge of Source he holds so beautifully inside him and how he will express that as he lives out his life in this world. The contribution will be meaningful and epic as is the contribution of every soul here. Singing River comes alive just now singing happily in the fading days of summer. I wonder what it’s like to be a tree…soaking in the sun, receiving admiration or a hug sometimes by a passer by like me. Trees are old and wise and have seen much. They have consciousness just as much as we do expressed differently and projected into a different form that has been used in metaphor since likely we humans began to speak. They too are part of this beautiful Big “C” Consciousness of existence. Our very breath depends upon them, and that interdependence seems too often taken for granted in my estimation considering loggers who ruthlessly cut them down too much. But even that I understand. They too have families to feed but there is something missing I actually learned from watching an episode of all things, “Dr. Who.” That thing is choice. We have the ability to choose what we will and will not participate in. We can choose to perpetuate the desimation of convenient alternative species here on planet Earth. We can choose to dessimate and destroy each other physically or emotionally if we wanted to or we could choose a different path…a path of understanding…a path of striving to do no harm or to learn to see what harm may come in the future for a simple thoughtless action or word now. It is within our capacity to choose but some of us seem a bit incapable at times.
I’m a believer that we all do the only things we can do in a single moment. A common string exists between us all of many in just that simple ability to choose and facing whatever it is that may seem to impede that ability. Me, I respect all life but I’m not perfect and I’ve killed a spider when it frightened me crawling up my wall. I didn’t really want to hurt life but I did it in fear. How many choices do we make in fear or in some other unnatural state for us? Do you ever wonder? Do you ever think about the effect or better yet, the cause? Do you wonder about what you create or how we collectively do so? I do, every day and this week was no different. This week I found myself a bit more disconnected and by far less emotional. But, not absent or lacking any feelings of compassion or love. I may not care for bugs but they deserve to live and experience life too. I may not care for the decisions my brothers and sisters make but they deserve to live and experience life too. Do I wish to protect all from harm? Oh yes, that is my nature right down to the core of my being and within that core is power beyond measure. And so it is within you too..in all of us if we could just find that quiet moment and listen to how the world all around us sings…how we might sing.
So, a week in a life has come to a close. It’s my first week completed as I begin my 48th year on planet Earth. I do not despise any choice I have made this week. I do not dislike a single thought I have thought. I appreciate every action, strange thought and admiration I’ve held for life as it marches on just as it is. I think I’ve come to accept life on its terms because those terms are not separate from me. I am a part of this whole too…as are you and the rest of the inhabitants on planet Earth. I hope that this week in whatever year of life you now traverse, brings you deeper understanding and compassion towards all, that you find the light in whatever seems ominous and dark and that no matter what you refuse to give up hope in humanity. We are really amazing in an infinite multifaceted manner. May your God or Goddess keep you strong, hopeful and ever expanding in the light of love.
© J.L. Harter (photo, random internet find of a sycamore tree – just like my Singing River).