you will not be far wrong. - Idries Shah
I just thought I would list certain things I have noticed lately without any fanfare. I have made many observation on myself and other things and thought I would share. I think its always good not only to lampoon oneself to be sincere with oneself, in front of everyone too.
God The Scape Goat
I have noticed that when we find ourselves in a situation that we didn’t plan on being in, or when we are called out by life for our own nonsense or BS rather, or go through hardship we tend to say “God is testing me”. or “God is trying to show me something.” Never do we acknowledge our own action that brought us to the moment. Never do we imagine our own failings. I have seen this a lot in political speeches as some modification of this line
“We are at a time of crisis and trial, so and so [economy, finances, the environment, education scores, national debt] and and failing and we have to come together as [people, human, members of this or that party]. God willlingly we will get through this test. “
At no point is there any accountability, or mention of past acts and mistakes that have brought us to this point. By saying God is testing me we are trying to put a positive spin on things, trying to make a situation more palatable, trying to placate our ego and sense of ‘ I ‘. I think it is wrong to assume that we know what God is doing and why and when and how. I think it would be better to concern ourselves with ourselves, our own nafs and confronting our own shadow. Saying God is testing me is a clever slight of hand, where we outwardly mention God in such a way to continue with our egocentic ways. Hafiz says quite poetically [paraphrased] that we ourself are our own veil to the truth. To this I would like to add a quote from both Nur Ali Shah and Maghribi that seems apropos
Elimate the sin
that is Maghrebi’s Existence
Once that is done
ask no more about sin
Lack of Trust/Conditions
I have noticed that a lot of times myself included that we love to impose conditions on thing and when we don’t get them as we he have envisioned them with all our conditions we get upset and frustrated. I have many example in my own life, and conversations with friends and family, everywhere really. One may want a partner who looks like this and that, who is this tall can cook etc. Of course we get attached to that image and we really put ourselves through agony to get it oftentimes while what we need is right in front of us.
I feel that we want things our way under our condition quite often because life is very scary, there is no security and nothing is promised to us. Until we have an experience of our true nature even our lives are seemingly on loan to us.
I have come to find many relationships now suffer from projection, I think in the West by focusing on deluding ourselves into feeling safe and secure , we don’t consciously face many realities of life. We are obsessed with getting old and there is a billion dollar industry devoted to making people look younger. Many of us don’t want to face the fact that we will die, and if we live long enough get wrinkles and grey hairs.
We love to reduce everything beyond practical use and then label things and in so doing create this whole simulacrum of what life is. we aren’t in the business of sincerity I feel. So all our fears and the things we dont want to face in many ways are projected onto the people in our lives. All of our past hurts are still quite alive though they are not necessarily visible all the time and they in many ways poison our lives.
I was told that real Spirituality only begins after we are psychologically balanced, individually as well as culturally, socially, globally. Which is why every tradition has a method to bring one to completeness. What do you feel
The Commercialization of the Sacred
Is your life hard? Do you feel worried at night? Do you not feel fulfilled? Do you want to make more money? 15 minutes a day pray/meditate like a Tibetan monk, Dance like a dervish, speak to the spirits like a Shaman, be wracked with guilt as a Roman Catholic (I had to say that as a Roman catholic and fan of James Joyce) read on about my new method!
It goes with out saying that nothing is sacred any more. Every few days someone is hawking a new method, to help you reduce stress, make more money, be successful, Look taller without lifts in your shoes. Spirituality, Self help Books and New Age make tons of money. there is the Power of Abundance, The Power of Affirmations, The Power of many other positive words. I will create some now: power of Presence – 10 steps to make your higher self more present in your Daily life. There is the Power of Giving, The Power of its opposite as well with a cool spin The Power of Receiving, There are laws The Law of Success, Law of Abundance, The Law of Attraction, The Law of repulsion – learn to push out all the stress and negative things from your life that keep you weighted down in the miasma of the everyday like a low fiber diet. I might if anyone is interested we can write together a self help book full of complete nonsense and see how popular with will become as an experiment, we can donate all the money to a charity. I went to the book store recently and noticed how many books descriptions are starting to sound like the commercials for drugs just without the low toned side affects.
What I do take from this is that people have become estranged in many ways from the human experience. We have trapped life by our fears and labels and in doing so we have trapped ourselves in an artificial world, and its results are far reaching. I mean look at the ecosystem for starters.
End Note – for Friends and Readers
For me a large part of mysticism is to unlearn our old habits and conditions. I make a habit to really observe myself and the society we live in and every now and then I thought I would share so that we all can talk about it in a constructive way. I feel this is healthy to start a discussion about these things please share your thoughts.
As for some of my friends who may read this (as a link goes to my facebook) and will eventually ask, did I write this for them? or am I trying to tell them anything, the answer is emphtically no!!!. Know that if you are on my friend list you are perfection itself, noble in reason, infinite in faculty, the paragon of both animals and angels, and finally the beauty of the world.