What We Are
It seems we are the result of countless influences since childhood: We are influenced by family, by school; we are influenced by experience, by culture, by the economic system; we are influenced by work and influenced by ideology, religion, and status. Outside of us, everything is imposed to train us, shape us, into being something acceptable to established patterns of thought and behavior. We take these in, these influences, and the influences go back out into the world to reinforce these patterns, these tendencies, so that we can see that what we are inwardly is the same thing which we see outside of ourselves. It becomes clear that there is no difference. In this, there is conflict, because where there is conformity, there is struggle to hold to the pattern, no matter the reality; in it, there is comparison, there is, therefore, division; division is the essence of violence. We are held to the ideal, which is illusory, time-based and imaginary; it is time-based because it is based in a projection to the future, what should be, as opposed to what is; this also is the comparison; and it is based in what was–the past– brought into the present and projected forward into the future; this is the conflict and distortion and is based in image rather than reality or truth. Time-based illusions create pressure, so create deterioration; it wears down the mind; the mind is unable to see clearly, it is in conflict and distorted and is distracted by its illusions.
What We Do
We develop identifications connected to these influences, these cultural pressures, these economic assumptions, the ideals, the ideologies, the religious affiliations. It’s all mere illusory patterns which we fall in line with and which we call “ourselves”, which I might call “me”, “myself”, which must be held up, held together, though not at all real. Without “me”, the whole thing falls apart, in fact, without “me”, there is nothing to be influenced, so influence then falls apart, becomes ineffectual.
What We Can See
What we might never see is that we are doing it all. As said, we are creating the outer world, we are creating the world. In this sense, we are the world, we make it happen. When it is seen that there is no separation between what exists outwardly and what exists inside of us, then we are responsible; we see that we create this world. And this doesn’t mean to continue to fall in line; this is not a justification for conformity to the patterns. The patterns are identifications, divisions, competition, violence, self centered activity. Responsibility involves seeing this directly and clearly, with full attention; not the divided attention of ideology and identification, but the whole attention which comes about with direct perception and an understanding of the disorder of the divisive self and illusory ideology born of psychological time.
By Dwight Burdette (Own work) [CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
What We Can Do
In this we can see vast potential; not the false potential of ideals, which are illusory, which create the havoc of psychological time and struggle, but the potential of going beyond these things and living newly, a life which turns humanity around and changes everything.
Featured image: h-k-d, Flickr. Some rights reserved.