Eckhart Tolle posed our predicament clearly when he wrote: “Humanity is faced with a stark choice, and the choice is this: Evolve or Die”. I believe what he meant is if we’re not stretching our minds to think outside the limiting thoughts we think day in and day out, and if we’re not stretching our hearts to encompass those we judge, then we’re shrinking, and in essence, dying.
It’s not just the muscles in our bodies that atrophy when we’re not using them, our minds can experience atrophy, our hearts can experience atrophy, even our souls can experience atrophy. It’s impossible to expand and contract, to evolve and die at the same time.
So the question becomes: If we’re committed to evolving, what are we evolving toward?
Expanding our consciousness requires a vision. The greatest leaders of our time led with great visions; Martin Luther King, Jr.’s dream inspired people into action, Mahatma Gandhi’s vision called people into passive resistance. Action without vision can keep us stuck at the level of the problem; the vision is the beacon of light in the lighthouse guiding our boat into a safe harbor.
Within the Interspiritual movement the vision is a future global civilization based on the heart. In the Baha’i faith the vision is the Earth being one country.
Do you believe this is achievable?
It’s hard to imagine given the deep divisions, political fractions and prejudices we’re currently witnessing in our country. But skepticism and cynicism leads to apathy, and apathy leads to death. From an interspiritual perspective, these visions are not a pipe dream. If they were, then all of the spiritual experiences you and I have experienced and know to be true in our bones, would mean nothing. There is evidence of a transcultural, transnational, world-centric spirituality emerging worldwide.
Using the power of the imaginal realm, we call forth a vision into reality by imagining and feeling the vision as though we are living from it now.
Gently close your eyes and let your mind, your heart and your soul imagine a peaceful, unified world. Envision a civilization where our plans and decisions are heart-based…imagine a world without war; without heavily-militarized borders; without hatred or prejudice…conceptualize the immense resources we have put into new weapons being funneled into building new schools, where respect, kindness and compassion are important subjects being taught to our children…imagine using money spent on new wars being spent on cleaning up our environment and providing food and clean water to those in need…envision the fear and doubt we experience in our daily lives being transformed into love that is being spread across the globe. And finally, imagine children growing up in a world without trauma or fear, of being so loved, cherished and protected that they are inspired to share their gifts and talents with the world in remarkable ways.
Embodying a world-centric vision is attainable and holding to this vision is the first step. The second step is clearing the blockages preventing us from living in our heart. The Baha’i Faith states, “Acceptance of the oneness of humanity demands that prejudice—whether racial, religious, or gender-related—is the greatest contributor to humanity’s present afflictions. Prejudice is a false perception, or preconception, of others based on ignorance, blinding us to the fact that every person is essentially a spiritual being with unique talents and capacities, a mine rich in gems of inestimable value.”
Our job is to scour our minds for prejudices, not an easy task. No one wants to believe that he or she is prejudice or a bigot. The problem with prejudices is that they are frequently hidden in the shadows of the unconscious, but we all have them. Often we inherit them from our families and environment and they are alive and kicking in the collective unconscious. Becoming cognizant of our judgements and prejudices is a necessary step in evolving toward a peaceful, respectful, compassionate and loving civilization.
Third, sharing our highest vision with others is vital. We know a shared idea grows in intensity. Like seeds scattering from the wind, it spreads across the masses and shifts the collective consciousness. Sharing your vision of a world-centric experience with someone you trust, someone who can hold the space, is incredibly important to manifesting it into a reality.
Despite the unloving, selfish and prejudicial behavior we’re seeing in some of our nation’s leaders, let us remember that love is the most healing force in the world. Osho wrote, “Nothing goes deeper than love. It heals not only the body, not only the mind, but also the soul.”
May we evolve toward a vision of oneness and harmony fueled by love, the one true power that can heal all things, the life force energy that keeps us moving toward a heart-based humanity.