I've noted that we are all sleepwalkers. We see our daily reality as THE reality, and we go about wandering in the wilderness believing it is the real deal. Yet, there is always something hauntingly missing from the quotient until we wake up.
The great teachers and sages of all traditions through time have attempted to point the way, but many ignore the signposts and advice, much as teenagers do not want to listen to their elder
So, in thinking of this, I recognized that as we are born into life, we are separated physically from the womb of insulation and thrust into a reality that appears to be composed only of physical elements surrounding us. We adapt to this physical reality and play out our years in accordance to opportunities, impulse, and expectation. The underlying hunger that propels us may be channeled into goals and personal success, or we may simply see ourselves as victims of an unfair deal, making our way through the process with minimal effort or enthusiasm. However, at some point, there is a yearning for something more - something beyond the self that we have come to identify with as being us
At some point, all the messages that confirm our separateness cease to make sense. We recognize that going it alone or feelings of "us against them" do nothing to make our lives better - only to further separate us from an inner knowing that lies deep beneath all the layers of illusion we've come to accept as real. It is when this gnawing desire to know truth hits us that we look for something more - something beyond what we've been told is real. It is then that we recognize in the teachings of "as above, so below" that if we spend a good portion of our lives in a state that is asleep, returning to waking and questioning the weird dreams or illusions presented in the sleep state may indeed be a clue to what is going on in our seeming reality time. In other words, maybe we are asleep right now, playing out a scenario of separate self that is as bizarre as some of our dreams. Perhaps we are not these separate selves at all, and that there is something bigger awaiting our awakening.
A bridge to reality is often needed for those of us who have been steeped in the sleep mode. This is where so many of the spiritual teachings come in. We have guides to help us. We have those who have become enlightened - who have woken up - seeking to aid us in our own awakening. They are the bridges we sometimes need to help us to walk into the real world - the one that has no separateness - the one that is God.
In looking out at the garden and at the sky, it dawned on me that any illusion of separateness is ridiculous. After all, I cannot exist without the air I breathe or the environment that feeds and clothes me. I am utterly dependent upon all of it. Yet, we see the earth and its abundance as something we can use and defile - as though it has no connection to us or us to it other than as a useful tool. How can we be so arrogant as to think that what we depend upon for life is a tool? It is part of the system to which we all belong, and all of it and us is one system that is fully alive - not separate systems where one is more special or prized, and another is of little value. Where does air begin and end? Where do sky and earth not connect?
Through the multiple traditions, there are many names and ways to recognize unity in consciousness. Yet, interestingly enough, most are born of separateness because each often claims the exclusive right to enlightenment. Only through this teacher or this tradition or these practices can you become part of the "in" group, and if you don't adhere, you are an outsider - banished from the kingdom.
When we really take a look at how ridiculous any claim of exclusive domain is, we see things from a clearer perspective. It is as though we have been propelled to the top of the mountain where we see the 360 degree view of all connected in one sweeping panorama of beauty and awesome diversity. Everything is an expression of the One. We are part of this beautiful earth, the part of our system that keeps us alive. We are united with space and cosmos as well. All of it is one continuum without artificial boundaries that separate any of it from the other, save in our minds.
So, as we feel the stirrings of awakening, we open to the concept that perhaps we are connected also in God. Perhaps we are not some separate thing out here that is an eye sore or insult to that which it truly is. Perhaps we and it are one consciousness expressing in diversity, just as nature, who we hold as inanimate and separate, expresses through multiple forms in concert with one another to bring life and growth and renewal over and over again. Perhaps if we saw earth and God in terms of our bodies - we would be able to have an eye opening experience. How does the heart be separate from any other part of the internal organism that is the guts of what keeps us living? How can we choose one part of the essential running of these bodies as the exclusive one, when without everything in harmony, we suffer minor or major ailments and disease?
Our bodies are cells in the larger body of consciousness, God, Allah, Christ, Source - whatever we want to term it. And until we recognize that we are that larger reality expressing itself, we can use the intermediaries and luminaries who help us to bridge the gap. Once we wake up, we can move forward with or without external guidance, because we "know" who we are, and then we are open to the journey of a lifetime - Walking Into God.