Most of us agree that discrimination and separation are always wrong and they are wrong when we apply such attitudes to the events and moments in our days.
Intrinsically, there is no such thing as a ‘good’ and ‘bad’ or ‘fun’ and ‘sad’ moment or situation. These qualifiers spring out from the low end of our Ego and are totally subjective.
What the low end of our ego perceives as fun, good and rewarding is great, a blessing or a lucky break. What the low end of our ego perceives as unpleasant, unjustified and painful is considered a nasty divine injustice – even by agnostic folks.
Having said that, even when a situation in our life is unimaginably ‘soul’ destroying, it is merely ego destroying and we still have to recognize it for the karmic event that it is – and do our best to work through it ‘soulfully’.
Reality check: sent to us for reasons we may never know, any nasty situation in our life has boomeranged back from acts performed in lives long forgotten.
While some moments yield rewards that often surprise us and that we incorrectly call ‘blessings’ and ‘good fortune’, the appearance of any emotional challenge in our life also stems from the same source.
Each individual situation in our life is a test in the form of a payback or a heads up that is karmically programmed for us to deal with in this lifetime , right now; even a lovely, unexpected outcome must be dealt with from the heart, in a soulful manner and not be merely ‘enjoyed to the fullest’ as a gratuitous indulgence.
Remember, we are souls in disguise. We are disguised in our body, in a body suit or, as Alan Watts called it, in our ‘bag of skin’. Remember, too, that though we only have one lifetime to act out, our soul is already loaded down by a heavy string of lives, past incarnations, anchored in the Dawn of Times.
And so, horrifying events, as so many are, as well as any other event, land on us screaming, “Deal with me from the heart. You don’t have to embrace me. You don’t have to thank the lord for saddling you with such hardship, but you have to accept me actively, not under duress. Once you have worked at that long enough to overcome the challenge, I will be on my way. For now, however long it takes you to accept your challenge holistically is however long I will hang around.”
And so, for me, the litmus test of genuine spirituality is not about looking the part in a robe, caftan, turban or cassock – or from under a veil. It is not about rituals and meditations. It is not about publishing more theories and yet another series of self-help books – and making money, sometime a lot of money, out of people’s misery.
For me, the litmus test is simply whether, in the moment that is under our feet, we are able to actively work out an acceptance of our stressors, our illnesses, our disappointments as well as of our emotional pain with a heart that is beginning to open – a heart that is striving for an energetic Acceptance – not a heart that beats to the rhythm of our mind/ego.
In simple terms, can we make an honest peace with the situation and the protagonists within it?
If the answer is a screaming, “OMG! I’m nowhere near that!” it’s OK because practice makes perfect and no genuine effort in altering our heart energy is ever too little, too late. Each one of us is a proverbial Work In Progress.
Reality check: what we progress toward is entirely up to us.
The very good news is that, really, there is no such thing as a lost soul, a dark soul or a bad soul. The low end of our ego is often dark because it is totally self-centered and unable to love unconditionally, not even the ones we ‘love’ the most, but our soul is always pure, as per her divine/cosmic nature. She is always there, right in the middle of our chest, right there, right under our hand. All that she needs from us is that we reweave our lost connection to her – independently of any religious belief or ritual.
Rethinking thinking and understanding better – within a spiritual philosophical framework – the meaning of what is happening to us and to those with whom we have been cast to share important moments in this lifetime should be our foremost personal goals.
Baby steps rock, particularly when done moment after moment, as every toddler knows well.