How to Live and Why

Spirit shares gems of wisdom.

Spirit tells me that to live in such a way that brings
a sense of satisfaction and pleasure requires us
to seek to serve others, because in serving others
we also serve ourselves.

Survival of oneself depends upon survival of others
and upon the survival of the environment which
sustains us all.

But, He continues, we cannot care for anyone if we
do not first care for ourselves, because if we have
no love for ourselves then we have no love to share
with anyone or anything else.

It’s as simple as that.

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Messengers and Teachers

Spirit shares gems of wisdom with me. Why? I don’t know,
but I’m glad he does.

He tells me that I’m not the one who’s directing His
traffic, nor is He directing mine, except …

Except what?

Not what, but how and why? We each serve a higher
purpose than our own.

I’m free, He tells me, to choose to listen to Him
and the teachings that He would share with me,
or not to listen. He’s a messenger and the teachings
He shares with me, for whatever reason, are far
beyond a one-to-one personal correspondence. they are
also meant for whomever cares to hear them and to
consider their value. They were never, He repeats,
designed for me, alone.

Why me at all?

You seemed to be ready.

Can you be both a messenger and a teacher of the
messages you share with me?

Is a teacher not as a messenger to his or her
students?

Yes. I see. The teacher must first have received
the messages she or he now shares with students.

Yes.

A Personal History Book

Spirit shares words of wisdom with me that seem so deep and yet expressed in words simple enough even for me, a simple seeker
and slow learner, to almost understand.

He tells me that knowing is not a matter of faith. We know
that wounds hurt for we have experienced their pain, both
physical and emotional wounds.

Physical pain is felt through our physical senses while
emotional pain is a mental state and is often learned and
developed through habit.

How do we learn emotional pain?

It’s a socially acquired skill.

If you offend me and I feel distressed, then I have learned
to feel distressed, and you’re not the cause?

Yes.

Who taught me?

You taught yourself.

Then, everyone would feel offended for the same reason?

Not necessarily.

Why?

You couldn’t offend me.

Perhaps you’ve developed immunity to offence.

There are other labels.

Such as?

Tolerance, patience, understanding, compassion, …
The list goes on.

You didn’t include awareness.

Yes.

Why?

The examples I provided each require a certain depth
of awareness.

The problem with that approach, or at least one problem,
is that it would seem to require a certain detachment
from the emotional state of the offender, as well as
from oneself.

Why would that be a problem?

It would suggest a certain lack of sensitivity.

Not necessarily so.

Please explain.

As we become increasingly aware of the path, then we can
listen to what some might call offence, calmly, and feel
compassion for the distress of the other. As Confucius
might say, “No blame”.

How is that possible?

As we develop an ever more clear vision, we can see in many
more directions than one.The present arrived from the
past and we each are as a personal history book that
those who have eyes to see can read, and we all can and
will develop eyes that see, sooner or later, and from
a unique perspective.

I’m not ready for that quality of insight, yet.

Yes.
aught me? urs

We Share Our Life

Spirit tells me that we each share our life
with all who know us, to the depth that
they know us.

Or think they do?

No.

Please explain.

Much of what we think we know is no more
than programming from sources outside of
our own mind.

But, at least some of what we learn
from outside sources, such as teachers …

And so-called news reporters and
advertising?

Surely, nobody believes everything
she hears.

Is believing the same as knowing?

How can we know anything that we
don’t believe?

How can we believe anything that we
don’t know?

Then, believing is not knowing?

Yes. Knowing does not require believing.

But, believing requires thinking
that we know?

No.

Then, what?

We believe what we know that we do
not know, but trust that it is so.

We trust our outside source of information?

Yes.

But, information is not necessarily
knowledge?

Yes.

But, surely we must believe before we can
know.

Why?

It’s easier than simply accepting that
we do not know, yet.

Yes.

So, what*s the answer?

To what;?

The problem of not possibly knowing
everything and yet needing to believe
that we do know something.

Acceptance and intention.

Acceptance that we don’t know what we
don’t know but intention to learn
what we can and care to?

Yes.

Independence is Never Disconnection

Spirit tells me that, once, when we were young,
we praised the concept of independence and that
now we are aware of the unavoidable reality of
connection.

How to resolve the problem?

What problem?

The need to be in relationship and still
feel independent of that relationship?

It isn’t possible.

Why?

Relationships require a degree of overlap
of personal interests, desires, or goals.

Is a relationship a midway point between
independence and connection?

A relationship is a connection.

In what way?

In our attitude toward whatever or
whomever we feel related to.

Isn’t it possible to feel neither for
nor against someone or something?

No.

What about a middle way?

There is no middle way.

Then why did the ancient wisdom teachers
speak of a middle way?

To lure their people from extremes.

Then, independence and connection are as
yang and yin?

In what way?

In that neither can exist independently
from the other except in degrees of
separation?

Yes. Each contains the other and
continuously moves either toward
or away from being completely absorbed
by the other.

The incoming tide becomes the outgoing
tide?

Yes, just as the full moon seems to
continuously empty and refill itself.

There is only one shape to the moon,
even though it appears to be shaped
differently at different times?

Yes.

Does that suggest that independence
and connection are as different sides
of the same coin?

Yes.

The Middle Way is Narrow or Wide

Spirit tells me that the middle way is as narrow
or wide as the mind who walks it is.

Then, the middle way for some might be considered
as an extreme by some others who travel on either
side of that so-called middle way?

There is no so-called middle way. Anyone who
travels her or his own middle way is travelling
the middle way.

Regardless of how it might appear to some others?

We do not sincerely travel the middle way, our
middle way, to impress others, unless we are
travelling a road designed by others.

Then, we design our own middle way?

Yes.

How is that possible?

How is it not possible?

How can we know?

What?

What our own middle way should look like.

Look like?

I need to be able to visualize.

Yes.

What does that mean?

We can only know our own middle way
by also knowing our own extremes;
our individual potential for living
high or low.

I thought the middle way was moving
upward.

It is.

But, if the path we each travel is
between a low way and a high way ..

And it is.

Please explain.

To walk the middle way is to live as
you now live, moving through time,
while you are experiencing physical form

Your thoughts and emotions have power
to pull you high or low. Your unique
middle way harmonizes equally with
both extremes.

Then, some might have …

Not some; all do have a unique outlook
on life – within and without.

Then, no two middle ways will necessarily
be as the other?

Exactly.

Then, how can I learn to recognize my own
middle way?

Self-awareness. Know thyself.

More meditation?

Yes, but intentional meditation.

How to live and why

Spirit shares gems of wisdom.

Spirit tells me that to live in such a way
that brings a sense of satisfaction and pleasure
requires us to seek to serve others, because
in serving others we also serve ourselves.

Survival of oneself depends upon survival of
others and upon the survival of the environment
which sustains us all.

But, He continues, we cannot care for anyone
if we do not first care for ourselves for,
if we have no love for ourselves then we have
no love to share with others.

It’s as simple as that.

Called up on the Carpet, Again

“Chela”, Spirit seems to sigh with hopeless resignation at my distress. Where is the compassion and understanding? Surely I have suffered enough.

“Chela”, my mind must have wandered. Blame it on stress.

“You have always, it seems, excused, or tried to excuse, obnoxious and, or abusive behaviour on the pretention, and I repeat, pretention, that it was due to a lack of development of more socially acceptable forms of behaviour, and not to a deliberate intent to offend or harm you. And then, though the incident stresses you to tears, you blame yourself for being too sensitive. When will you dare to accept that what seems abusive, is abuse”.

“It is a Law of Nature”, Spirit reminds me, for haven’t I heard this lecture a thousand times or more, “that every action we consciously, or through habit, choose to undertake, requires intent. And, when you, through need of whatever, choose to excuse abusive behaviour, not only are you being less than honest with yourself, you are sharing in that behaviour, as a co-abuser. This is called self-abusive behaviour”.

How does that fit?” He then asks, almost smugly,  Is He throwing me a challenge? Perhaps, but if so, I’m in no emotional condition to defend myself, at least, not yet.