“Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice.” –William Jennings Bryan
Have you ever experienced a moment, perhaps while meditating or reading a book, when the big picture flashed in front of your mind’s eye for just a split second and it was so big that you were at a loss to find words to even begin to describe what you are seeing? Well, I’m having such a moment now, and I will take up the challenge to find the words that adequately, if only partially, convey the vision that is currently out-picturing itself in my tiny little mind.
The kernel of truth in this vision of the big picture that jumps out at me is that we can find ourselves only in one another, because it’s in another human being that we have a window through which to peer into and connect with the Whole of which we are a part. And it’s how I treat the one right next to me that determines whether that window stays open or closes.
I have come to realize this truth right here in this little house on Bilbo Street, where, in my ageing years, I find myself, by choice and well as chance, living closely with another human being, a person whom I invited some sixteen years ago to be my wife and traveling companion for the rest of our shared journey here on Earth. It is here with her that I have come to know more fully and completely what it means to love another as my Self, and that love can only be unconditional – naturally so. I could not have any conditions placed upon how I love my Self. It’s impossible even from an egotistical standpoint and much more from an angelic standpoint of authenticity as a Self-realized human being. The essence of the truth of love is its unconditional nature, and the truth of love is oneness.
Yes, if you’ve been following my blogs, you can tell that I’m reading another book that is giving me yet another window through which to peer into the world through the eyes of another author, this time through the eyes of world-renown lecturer, scientist, and prolific author, Gregg Braden. His book of 2011 is DEEP TRUTH. And, of course, like most books I’ve read and written about lately, this one, in my humble opinion, is another “must read” for everyone on the planet.
As a side note – though not so incidental to this post – I picked up Braden’s book at a friend and colleague’s house up in Denver, Colorado while attending to him as he completed his earthly journey of service to his fellow wayfarers. I took the book home with me as a memento, along with a portrait of the developer of our chiropractic profession, Dr. B.J. Palmer (BJ), that was painted by a mutual friend, Frank Brown. At the bottom of this portrait, the artist inscribed a famous quote that has stayed with me since my college days:
We never know how far reaching something we may think, say or do today will affect the lives of millions tomorrow. It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. Get the idea, all else will follow.
BJ called it “The Big Idea.” The big idea throughout Braden’s book is that we are One People who share one small, almost insignificant planet, in a vast cosmos along with billions of other incarnate beings – or is it rather One Being incarnate in billions of humans — and we’ve been doing this for a much larger period of time than we’ve been taught in high-school history class, the story line and poignant message of Gregg Braden’s book.
According to the author’s exhaustive research over his twenty-plus years as a scientist and discoverer of the “deep truth” weaving human civilizations together as one people, our history as a species dates back to pre-ice-age eras and encompasses the rise and fall of many civilizations far more advanced than our own. His moral message is that unless we remember our past mistakes that led to the collapse of our numerous attempts to create a truly civil way of living together, we are condemned to repeat them – an idea, first put forward by philosopher George Santayana (1863 – 1952), whose time has come to our generation for serious consideration, for our days are numbered.
The kernel of Gregg’s message is summarized in the following paragraph, a paragraph that gave rise to the vision of the Big Picture that flashed across the window of my mind:
Like a real-life Groundhog Day (the 1993 motion picture where Bill Murray plays a man caught in a single day of his life that repeats dozens of times until he recognizes the moment when his choice can break the cycle and change the outcome, our understanding of how our ancestors responded to cycles of crises in the past may offer us the opportunity to choose wisely before we make the same kinds of mistakes that led to the collapse of great early civilizations.
I had never seen this message in the movie itself, but it’s there to see, intentionally or not, when we back away from our immediate surroundings and our personal stories and take a glimpse at the larger picture – a long glimpse.
The choice Bill Murray’s character had to make was an internal one, which alone could break the spell of living the same day over and over. After doing everything imaginable in his outer lifestyle to break the spell, all to no avail, he one day woke up with the “big idea” that he could love the people in his life and his work, including the woman who was his partner in news-reporting, a woman whom he had womanized as a typical male seeking self-gratification. He finally broke through the veil of his own selfish, self-centered preoccupation and began seeing her for who she was, someone whom he could love and with whom he could find meaning and purpose for his life. When he finally broke through and made that internal choice – to love another human being as much as he loved himself and to treat others with respect and compassion, which he began doing – a new day dawned.
To relate this to the theme of the groundhog story, although in a converse way, when he saw his own shadow and made a choice to change the way he was looking at the world, his winter of endless repetitive days came to an end as he awakened to a New Day.
Gregg Braden’s book offers us a new and more comprehensive view of our world and of our past. It starts by unlearning our history so that we can see and learn what actually occurred in our past that brought us to naught so many times in our endeavors to create a lasting civilization. He ends this particular chapter by posing these questions:
To think this way leads to new questions that we owe it to ourselves to answer:
- What can we learn from the collapsed civilizations of the past that may help us avoid in our time the mistakes they made in theirs?
- Where are we in H. G. Wells’s “race” between learning about the past and catastrophe?
I will end on that note for us all to ponder. Until my next post,
Be love. Be loved.
Visit my Health Light Newsletter online at LiftingTones.com. for informative articles on holistic healthcare and living.
Here’s a link to Gregg Braden’s latest film: https://www.gaia.com/lp/missing-links/