Respect for the Personal

Respect for the Personal

RespectOn articles like The Power of Mantra, I’ve mentioned the personal mode of experiencing the world through the heart. I thought we should take the point a little further.

First, when we talk about experiencing angels, gods, and the Divine in form, we want to understand some distinctions.

There is the level of belief and of following established rituals. These are usually based on someone’s prior experience, often passed down for hundreds of years.

Those who are not “believers” may sensibly dismiss such things as superstition. Yet just because you’ve not been to Marrakesh doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

If we remain open and not too invested in dogma, a good spiritual process will gradually open the heart and refine perception. We’ll then have tastes of a fuller reality.

This is often overlaid with expectations from things we’d heard before. We may also get caught in trying to chase experiences when it’s that quiet touching in to source that keeps the refinement and consciousness developing.

And then, suddenly with a bang or gradually over time, glimpses become full experiences and whole subtle arenas become ongoing in our awareness.

We just have to account for what I call personalization. When seeing with the intellect, the impersonal, all is black and white with careful discrimination. We minimize “bias.”

But when seeing with the heart, there is more interactivity. In form, higher subtle beings can appear as they wish to. As we’re experiencing through our own cultural and historical expectations, this can have a potent influence on appearances.

For example, if we expect angels to have wings, we’re likely to experience them that way and they’re more likely to present themselves that way too. But on their natural level, angels don’t need specific forms. They’re more like clouds of light. But you can see how it’s challenging to interact with a cloud. 🙂

And that points to both the value and the hazard of the personal, of seeing Divine beings in form.

We can learn a lot about the weather through systematic study. But sometimes communicating with the beings managing the weather is more effective.

I’ve mentioned the example before of being on a plane doing a roller coaster on the wind. When I asked, the wind devas said they were just doing their jobs. But their supervisor was happy to redirect them when I was respectful.

On the flip side, if we put all our weight on appearances, we can set ourselves up to be manipulated by lower beings. The key is the underlying feeling value and understanding offered, not the appearance.

Consider the appearance just a way to communicate. It’s also much easier for the heart to express to a form with expressed qualities.

When we know Divine beings directly, there is a natural respect and perhaps awe, leading to a natural worship. Not a contrived process from a cramped heart or belief but an open surrender and respect for the powers that run the world, the beings we recognize as the true doers.

We don’t come to them as a lesser being but in mutual respect, a namaste. We’re all aspects of the one whole, and Divine beings live from that perspective. They contribute to supporting our life and we can support them, especially with soma.

Faith driven by direct experience is not blind or based on stories or an illusion, but based on the ways of the world itself.

With the right understanding we can avoid the hazards while discovering the world around us is rich with life.

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  1. dan

    What an excellent post. I have to remember this “This is often overlaid with expectations from things we’d heard before. We may also get caught in trying to chase experiences when it’s that quiet touching in to source that keeps the refinement and consciousness developing.”

    1. Hi Dan
      Yep, it can be a distraction for many. Our mind and senses are tuned to experiences. I had to learn this one too.
      People can see fancy experiences as markers of progress, so they start looking for things to bring experiences. Or over-emphasizing things. Or if they have fancy experiences, putting weight on them instead of what supports them.
      Same with waking up – if someone has an eventful awakening, they can miss what actually woke up and favour the experiences. But all of this is content. The awakening process is about the container, about consciousness itself.

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