COURSE OF ACTION
from a lecture by
The honest action of our daily experience appears to be a gentle middle ground, a delicate balance. Consider, for instance, the cautious balance between not yielding and not contending — or not contending and not yielding.
In the human scheme of things, the refusal to yield to something we have come to perceive as a false authority is accompanied by the world's moral demand to do battle with that authority and set it straight — al-ways for the benefit of others, of course. Such action is the product of education and has become the intuitive reflex of a society geared to "progress". But there is another course of action open to us wherein we quietly refuse to yield to any authority but the Divine, yet we remain careful (for our own peace and the benefit of the world) not to overstep that refusal to contend with the false authority.
The world holds this course in contempt and even the world's metaphysicians, by and large, attempt to rectify appearances, but our tangible freedom in daily experience will never be found outside this delicate balance. No, we do not cow before the supposed power of signs and symbols that have no power; we do not act as floor mats nor yield ourselves servants to obey the appearances of the world, but neither do we take those actions that constitute a battle with the world's authority. When this delicate point is perceived and lived (and lived!) our vision of war and rebellion is ended.
BY WAY OF EXPLANATION
A growing portion of my mail concerns itself with this matter, as is evident in the following quotes: (1) "My children (or grand-children) have gone wild! They are anti-establishment, anti-adult, anti-social and contemptuous of nearly everything that is conventional. What am I to do?" (2) "My organization (school, business, church, body) is woefully caught up in the dictatorial emptiness of old thinking and would attempt to enslave me thereby. What am I to do, pull up stakes or battle for an improvement in my organization?"
As appearances go, our response to the second question has given rise to the appearances that motivate the first. The answer to the one is the answer to the other — but that answer does not exist out there among the rebellious youth and their destructive actions, nor with the recalcitrant, dictatorial organization so many would like to see reorganized to fit a new pattern. It has altogether to do with THIS action the reader is right here — no one else and nowhere else. One does not have to "pull up stakes" or "battle for an improvement". There is yet another course of action, a barely seen center ground upon which one may stand and find himself having cleared up both situations at once. As THIS action — WE are — stops its battle with organization, THIS awareness sees the meaning behind the world's turmoil and sees it without fear or loss of equanimity.
For me it has been helpful to learn the hard lesson that challenging the pseudo-powers of the world does not mean a battle. To challenge the authority of a power that is not God is to stand firm on the single ground of God's omnipotence, therein discovering the powerlessness of the pseudo authority — and finding it in the first hand language of my own experience. To battle with the pseudo-authority in either action or argument is to give it (in my own experience) the very power it does not possess outside my belief that it is a power to overcome, change, heal or paste in the mouth — as if there could be a power beside God! Even then, the battle is with a belief — a personal determination that a power beside God exists capable of binding us and doing us in.
The faltering heart, the swollen joints, the fractious groups and warring nations are the evidence of that fictitious belief. To see the end of the mischief "there", we end the contention with our own images "here". Do you see this? It is not the people in our world who must do this, reader. Rather, this consciousness that "includes" those people does it FIRST, then we see "others" doing likewise. We be the lifted up, pristine Awareness smiling at itself HERE and find ourselves living the Christ of our Self-perceived, Self-inclusive universe smiling back from the mirror.
Have you ever seen one of those crystal mirrors that used to be a feature of the old ballrooms, years ago? It was a large "ball," with thousands of mirrored surfaces, and when the spotlights were turned on, it sent sparkles of light all over the room. Reader, imagine such a "crystal ball," an infinitely large sphere of mirrors: and imagine Awareness in the very center — this Awareness right here, looking out at its own infinite extension. If we perceive this Awareness to be an embodied awareness, it would look out and see its own infinite extension as embodied awareness "out there"; would it not? Such a view would be somewhat like sitting in a barber shop having mirrors on both sides, and seeing yourself reflected to infinity.
As we perceive who and what is the center of the sphere, do we not see all of our mirrored reflections with greater clarity? We see that the authority is not "out there" with them; the authority is here as I in the center. As this one "behaves" itself, and stops contending and arguing, it will see its mirrored reflections "behaving" themselves, and not contending or arguing. As I raise my right hand here, do I not see my reflection raise its right hand? If I proffer a hand in help to a mirrored reflection; do I not see that same reflection proffer its same hand toward me? Of course! So it is that as we proffer the hand of love and help to the world, which is but the infinite extension of this very Awareness right here, we see the world proffer its hand to us, and we find ourselves with blessings overflowing, "pressed down, shaken together," dropped in our lap!
The images of perception, whether they be institutions, people or feelings, are not the masters of the consciousness (Life) reading these words. Rather, institutions, people, feelings have their apparent existence because ISNESS (God) is aware as this awareness we are. Dominion resides where THIS one exists. To be dictated to by a false authority is to yield oneself servant thereof — and to sleep enslaved. To let our own images lead us around by the nose just because "they say" thus and so, is as senseless as the television set that trembles in fear that one of its images will smash the picture tube. I have seen a lot of cowboys shoot a lot of bullets, in the action on the picture tube, but I have never seen a single one of those cowboys able to shoot out the picture tube. We may see and hear many threats, many things that would indicate that something is about to do us in, but nothing out there, even the very image of the body we say is ours, can do Awareness in.
Lest we be fooled and find ourselves adding to the picture's agony rather than seeing the naught of it, we awaken to the narrow pathway between the challenge of external authority that would bind us, and doing battle with it. What happens if we try to do battle with it? Why it rears up its ugly head and does battle back! What happens if we smash our fist into the mirror? We get a cut fist; don't we? The present rebellion of youth will stop its senseless destructiveness and come out from its subverting, perverting nastiness only as this awareness-being-I ends its own contention with its included images. Within the cause-effect arena of mental manipulation, the appearance of a society being ripped apart by freedom-demanding youth is the inevitable consequence of our own effort to elevate a mistaken sense of Self up to a Perfection that is already All.
The time is ripe to stand fast as the witness of the ALLNESS we know to be the Fact of existence. We pull in the reins of contention here-as-I before our images appear to stop going off half cocked in all directions out there. We live and act the Christ-Comforter we are to our own perception of existence first. We do not save our world by doing battle with it, tearing it down, burning it up, creating doubt or suspicion, undermining it, healing it, manipulating it or trying to resign from it. We "save" it by seeing it as it is, seeing ourselves as we are, and acknowledging GOD to be the basis for all that is, has been, or could be.
A FINAL WORD:
There is a saying in the East that nothing has been read once until it has been read twelve times. May I suggest that you begin to reread this booklet at once. Do not put it aside until you have captured its message. There is a simple and gentle Light within these pages that will change your life and make all things new. It can! But it is a message only the Heart can find. Search with the Heart and you will find it.
Other Works By
A Guide to Awareness &
The Awareness of Self-Discovery
The Child Within Us Lives!
The Melody of the Woodcutter and the King
The Child Within Journal Notes
All Right Reserved Rachel Samuel
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