BEYOND THE BOX #017
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Differences

“Every gun that's fired, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who are hungry and not fed, those who are cold and not clothed” Dwight D. Eisenhower.

 

These articles are designed to have us take a deeper look at the world in which we have been raised. Let us take a more objective look at what is happening in the world around us and to which we are inexorably connected.

It is really important for us to gain a broader vision so that we can collectively affect the outcome which, given our present course, is quite a challenge! We have the power to create change. [Sound familiar?]Will we be able to rise to this challenge and help create a more loving and compassionate world for ourselves and for those that follow – indeed for our children and their children? This is the challenge facing us.

All of us are deeply influenced by the culture within which we are raised. Equally so are we influenced, like a seedling, by the conditions extant within the family situation in which we find ourselves planted, whether good, bad or indifferent. For each one of us the pattern is set from these very early years.

Equally so is the influence of the society and culture in which we are raised. Again, what we are exposed to is what we learn with all its attitudes and judgments, and, its limitations. As a child it's all we know. How could it be otherwise? This, of course, applies not only to our Western cultures, but indeed to all cultures throughout the world. With this in mind, it should help us to exercise a bit more tolerance towards other cultures different from our own.

In these situations we should always remember that at our roots we are all very similar. We all want love, happiness, harmony and security. We have two arms two legs, and a heart, and when we sit on the toilet it happens. The rest is what we have been conditioned to accept within our respective cultures and family setting as being the way it is.

The world desperately needs healing. As never before we need to reach out to each other and show tolerance and compassion and, indeed, see the differences not as threatening but as something to celebrate, and indeed learn from.

Having said that however, what we sometimes learn is that some “customs” come from fear based thinking. Many of these fears seem to be related to sexuality. Why else for instance would Islamic women have to keep their faces hidden? Or, as when the other day in Afghanistan , a number of school girls had acid thrown in their faces to prevent them from going to school. A shocking and tragic incident by an extremist attitude, relating to a corrupted belief concerning women, and their place in a society.

These two examples among many others I could draw attention to illustrates this global imbalance between men and women. I have raised this before, in earlier articles, that spawns these kinds of “customs”. It is all fear based and inhuman.

Another illustration of differences, with a less tragic outcome, can be seen in India . Here two men who are friends can walk down the street holding hands as a sign of their friendship, but in the West be seen as Gay. If they are, so what? As Trudeau once said, “The Government has no business in the bedrooms of the nation”. Why all these judgments?

Children don't see differences until someone older points them out. Children just play – and that my friends is what we need to do – to dance and giggle and tease each other and then hold hands and jump into the water together screaming and laughing all the way!

I am certainly not the first to say that we need to celebrate our differences, not be suspicious of them, but we must also see that basically we are very similar with the same hopes and fears. This insight should bring us closer together not drive us further apart.

Sadly, the Mumbai tragedy in India is a clear indicator of how increasingly fragile things can become, and how differences seem to be creating so much fear and hatred in certain parts of this world of ours. We should all be deeply concerned about this creeping poison that seems to be spreading. We in Canada or Australia , or indeed in other countries, are not immune to this dis-ease.

Are we to be controlled by our fears? Will we ever find real joy or be able to climb up out of the “Box” that imprisons us- and has done over the centuries? Are we just going to stand by and watch how conditioned we are to accept unquestioningly the Status Quo by which we have allowed ourselves to be controlled?

Let's be more personal for a moment, so here's a question! Do you ever catch yourself with the quality of the thought patterns you put out moment to moment? How often are these patterns spent in bitching about this and that in your life? We don't realize just how the quality of our thoughts will attract energy of a similar type back to us. Like attracts like. How many times have you heard someone say “Why does nothing ever go right for me?” or a similar negative statement. Believe it, I've seen this at work in my own life. When I am upbeat everything goes well. If I get up in a sour complaining frame of mind– feeling sorry for myself or whatever, s—t happens. Believe it, even if it doesn't seem logical that our moods should be so powerful. When I find myself slipping into a negative mind set I kick ass. Humor is a wonderful aphrodisiac – See, you're smiling! J

I would like to digress slightly before I close. I feel there is another element in all of this that some readers will relate to. Change is not always easy, and sometimes, to connect with a teacher or an individual with whom we feel comfortable, can make all the difference. I firmly believe that life is a “Journey of Discovery”. From time to time certain individuals come into our lives and leave a lasting positive impression on us. In a sense they are teachers – indeed some are actually cast in that designation, whether it be a Buddhist monk or a Reiki Master – or just someone we are drawn to who catches our attention. Usually this individual is someone we feel is more aware than we are, and from whom we feel we can learn.

So, as I have seen in my own life as I have journeyed, I have had the incredible benefit of teachers who have pushed their students on – and who, when I look back, knew when it was time to kick us out of their “Nest” lest we become too comfortable in it. By giving our power to them we would begin to stagnate. It gave an opportunity of living and “traveling” and to put into practice what we had learned, and to observe the eventual effects.

Once learned then in time another would appear to whom we might be drawn, and again the help is given to inspire and motivate us to further the unfolding of this that we search for – only to begin to realize that what we have been searching for has been right in front of us and always has been - each teacher helping to remove another layer of the blindfolds. These are the true teachers for there is no thought of self aggrandizement or glorification – only a profound love and dedication to the Journey and all that it means. Simply put, they know that we are indeed all one – truly – we have all evolved from the same Source – whom some call God – the human name we have given IT matters not – some simply call it - Love.

Let me give you a thought provoking quote from that profound Lebanese bard – Kahlil Gibran, from his classic book “The Prophet”. I am sure many reading this will have it on their own shelves. In this quote I am using, be aware that while he is speaking about Love and Marriage, it could apply to us all on our life's Journey:

“You were born together, and together

You shall be for evermore;

But let there be spaces in your togetherness,

And let the winds of the Heavens dance between you.

Love one another, but make not a bond of love;

Let it rather be a moving sea between

The shores of your souls.

Sing and dance together and be joyous

But let each one of you be alone,

Even as the strings of a lute are alone

Though they quiver with the same music.

And stand together yet not too near together:

For the Pillars of the Temple stand apart,

And the oak tree and the Cyprus

Grow not in each other's shadow.”

 

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Michael.

E-mail <wild.brine621@gmail.com>

Readers who may wish to read previous articles by this writer may do so by going to the following web site: <missionignition.net> and click on “Beyond the Box”.

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