"As separate individuals, we live in separate cultures haunted by the vague memory of an intimacy that we all share. Let us, all together, chase the very horizon of existence, the edge of understanding, the point at which new sensations, emotions, thoughts and ideas begin to emerge… and let us bring this intimacy alive." ~Alex Mero
What are your views on fear, and does fear stall our spiritual growth?
Growing spiritually also implies that we encounter, and learn from, the darker side of our nature. Dealing with the darker side, as is the case with fear, can be seen as a “struggle” with the forces that impede our reunification with the great creative force of the universe. As we progress on our spiritual path, we will inevitably come across fear and other negative energies, but these inhibitory, and sometimes, destructive forces, have a major role within the universal order. Once we learn to conquer them, we become more aware of our specific gifts and talents. Everything is energy, and what we perceive as destructive forces, are also a form of energy, and as with all energies, they can be used both in a constructive and destructive manner. If we allow ourselves to observe with a quiet and curious mind, rather than allowing ourselves to be over-taken with the negative emotions these darker forces can bring out, then these forces become useful and a learning tool for our spiritual growth.
“We’ve met so many doctors from abroad that have come to work here,” Nathan said, “And each time I ask myself what made them leave their comfortable lives to come work in the most appalling conditions.”
“Very often, they want to test their knowledge and put it to better use. In return, they develop their ability for empathy.” Songo answered.
“Aren’t modern doctors capable of compassion?” Nathan asked.
“A great number of those who study medicine know perfectly well what they think but not what they feel!” Songo stated.
“What are they missing?”
“They are missing the realization that healing someone helps expand their consciousness.” Songo replied.
“But how?” Nathan asked.
Songo was quiet for a moment, to give strength and conviction to his next words: “Healing others helps them get closer to their essence. We can even say that in certain cases, it can help someone remember who he is…”
“By that, do you mean that we help them find their true destiny?”
Songo looked at Nathan with admiration and was silent again. He was impressed with Nathan’s ability to make the right connections.
“You couldn’t have said it better.” Songo said.
Modern medicine focuses on the body, specifically on the area of the body that is ill, and often misses the whole picture. Everything is connected, and everything is energy. A disequilibrium in one area will affect the other. A disquieted mind will prevent a physical healing. Healing the body, but not healing within, is only temporary “healing”. True healing takes place within and then without. In fact, in many cases of illness, the focus should be on the inside first. Furthermore, when you’re healthy within, chances are you take better care of the outside, the body. What makes these doctors who volunteer to work in debilitated places gain empathy, and therefore, maybe become better “equipped” to heal? Maybe because they become less dependent on traditional medicine due to lack of resources and material, and “listen” more to the patients, to the root cause of their illness? Just a thought…
“I saw that you were reflecting earlier on the effects of indoctrination when it is practiced on a grand scale.”
“I fear that when we are deprived of freedom of thought, it will be impossible to maintain a critical mind.” Nathan answered.
“And, according to you, what are the consequences?” Songo asked.
Nathan recognized his father’s style of questioning in the way Songo was posing the questions. This approach had permitted him to greatly develop his thinking and discover great truths. It also told him that what Songo wanted him to understand was of great importance. He took his time to reflect on his answer.
“The consequences are that people will no longer be able to think for themselves as to what is good for them. They will behave and live in the way that is expected of them by others, and they will justify this attitude by studied arguments.”
“Nathan,” Songo said in a grave tone, “What you are affirming is the basis for the lack of harmony on earth!”
There was a moment of silence, than Songo said softly:
“What feeling does that bring out in you, Nathan?”
“A feeling of injustice towards the victims of these charlatans, and the victims they will in turn make.”
“Nothing else?” Songo asked.
“What I always feel in cases of injustice; the desire to put an end to it!” Nathan stated firmly.
Songo put his hand on Nathan’s arm and spoke again in a grave tone, cue that he was about to say something very personal.
“When you go against the main current of acceptable opinions, you must always arm yourself with courage. Courage consists of resistance, hope and unlimited faith in the success of your undertakings.”
Example, if you listen to political speeches, how some individuals articulate their words, emphasizing some, using pauses at particular moments…using different pitches for certain words… what do you think they are doing? Just thoughts to ponder…. It most certainly takes courage to stand up for the truth, because most don’t see it–truth– and will try to ridicule you or your ideas. But courage is an amazing thing; once you give in to it, a tremendous strength develops, and with courage and strength for what’s right, Love and Truth always prevail… Grace
Nathan was shocked by what met his eyes! Mud had completely invaded the streets and the cars could barely circulate. Everywhere people implored for help, the look of despair clearly visible on their faces, and the feel of fear and anguish distinctly palpable in the air.
At various times, the taxi driver was forced to stop the car, and Nathan with his heart clenched tight from all the misery he was seeing, asked Simon:
“Why is nature so cruel sometimes? It’s absurd!”
“It is not so much that nature is cruel that it’s absurd in as much as the need for its purpose!” replied Simon.
“What sense could all this have?” Nathan asked, trying to understand Simon’s reasoning.
“Like with any other catastrophe, it’s about the change that it will bring.”
“What change?” asked Nathan, now with curiosity.
“Whenever there are disasters, people have the possibility to develop qualities like courage, compassion, and their capacity to put things into perspective.”
The taxi started moving again. Nathan had difficulty seeing things the way Simon did.
“Can’t we do anything to help them?” he asked.
“Not for the moment, no.” replied Simon.
“Isn’t it precisely now that they need our help? Nathan insisted.
“It is in the calm and in the silence that follows a disaster that each person can then account and focus on what they need to learn.”
I see nature as a living entity, responding to the stimuli around it. It’s also an ever-changing entity, evolving just as we are… There are reasons and purposes for everything, and there’s also likely a bigger “plan” in this seemingly chaotic world. What can’t be learned the easy way, is taught the hard way. How true it is that it’s in moments of great disasters that people are reminded of the human basic qualities of the heart: love, togetherness, assistance, compassion, courage, respect, etc…
“He is gone, and he has left me with the worst despair.” Simon said with great pain in his voice.
“No, if he had died your sorrow would be much greater.” said Nathan.
“It is better to lose something beautiful then never to have had it. If he had been honest and had died, at least I would have kept beautiful memories…” said Simon sadly.
“But your beautiful memories… no one can take them away?”
“The past is now covered with a cloud of sadness… The day we doubt a person’s honesty we can’t help but see all the moments in the past with that person with a different eye.” replied Simon, “Believe me, Nathan, betrayal by your own child is more painful than having lost him.”
“Can you forgive him?” asked Nathan.
“Right now, I can only see him with different eyes…” answered Simon.
“What can he do to change that?”
“He would have to be sincerely remorseful for what he did.” replied Simon.
“How do we know when a person is expressing sincere remorse?” asked Nathan.
“Only by their actions.” answered Simon.
“And how do we recognize the sincerity in actions?” continued Nathan.
“Only with time!” affirmed Simon.
Nathan tried to analyze the situation as best as possible.
“I tend to think that you have been too good to your son.”
Simon looked at Nathan.
“Do you really think I was too good to him?”
“It’s your only mistake possible, if we can call it a mistake.” said Nathan.
Simon lifted his eyes and said:
“There’s an old proverb that says that if, because of our goodness, we have never been deceived, it’s because we have never been too good.”
I can understand the devastation the father in this story feels towards his son. Probably one of life’s greatest pains is the dishonesty and deceit of those we love, simply because we start questioning if we ever really knew that person to begin with. And just as this father said, you start questioning all the memories, all the deeds, words, etc of that person in the past. It “poisons” them. But one CAN forgive, even if the other person never changes or makes amends. Forgiveness is from within, it’s an individual thing, and has very little to do with the other person. It’s an acceptance of something that cannot be changed and a release of the pressure or energy that’s poisoning YOU. Everyone has their own path in life, and some sway from the right path more then others, but having an understanding and compassion towards the other, even if they hurt you, is living from the heart, and is liberating to you. Acceptance without expectancy. This does not mean you should keep the other person in your life, however.
“Happy? What is your definition of happiness? Mauro asked him.
“Happiness…? I’m not really sure. I’d like to know what makes YOU happy.”
“My happiness comes from wishing for what’s beneficial to myself.” replied Mauro.
“Well said! ” Laura exclaimed.
After hearing that, Y Chao thought about his own definition of happiness; however he doubted Mauro would agree with it. He hesitated, but finally stated: “For me, happiness is about realizing my dreams!”
“Dreams are important.”
Y Chao looked at Mauro a little surprised, but happy with Mauro’s approval. He completely forgot what his motive had been in the first place.
“But dreams also take place in our imagination…” Y Chao stated.
“Dreams are messages we receive from within to help us discover our true mission.”
“Really? That’s marvellous!” exclaimed Laura.
Mauro explained: “Before realizing a project, an idea had to have occurred first.”
“What if I dream of wanting to become rich?” asked Y Chao. Mauro wanted him to reflect on this.
“What does it mean to you to be rich?” he asked Y Chao.
“Rich means having enough money to be free!” He answered.
“Enough?” Mauro questioned.
Mauro said nothing for a few moments, giving silence its place, and then continued: “Our desires have no limits, and keep growing as we nourish them. Therefore they can never fully satisfy us. Only we can satisfy ourselves.”
“How so?” asked Y Chao.
“By becoming aware that the only real wealth we have does not consist in increasing our fortune but in controlling our desires!”
What most people don’t understand is that happiness is not something you search for, but comes as a result of living from your heart. When you live from within, a sense of peace and happiness naturally becomes part of you.
Dreams can bring insights to guide or keep you on your journey. For something to be actualized, it’s idea has to be thought or dreamt of first, otherwise it will never find its way into existence. So dreams are important.
What motivates you to write, and where do you get your inspiration?
I’ve always been attracted by the world of imagination, for the simple reason that it’s a world in which we can freely embody our thoughts. I loved visualizing my ideas through various different art forms from a very early age, but over the last few years literature has become my preferred method of communication. My source of inspiration, however, is rooted in the encounters that take place during my travels, in my conversations, and in my reading; but let’s just say that my inspiration is essentially a source of energy that comes from above, a form of intelligence which often surpasses me.