Sometimes I think I can paint this picture with words. This blog is my messy canvass. Trying to group together insights, they continue to fly off in their own ever changing directions…but it is good exercise chasing them around.
Consider that every living thing on the planet perceives of itself entirely in the present moment … except perhaps us … human beings. This is a simple but radical statement.
Think about it….
We are the only sentient life form, sentient meaning able to perceive or feel things, that perceives in a perceptual reality organized by Time. Our thoughts and feelings often dwell in re-living the past, or project into a possible future looking for evidence. We often entirely skip the present in favor of either of these virtual time zones.
Simply considering that a substantial portion of the human population is at any one moment perceptually absent…
Is this one lone factor
Having on our world?
We need to determine how to reconcile that we have created, and are operating in, an entirely different physical and spiritual perceptual reality than the rest of organic life.
So imagine for a moment that you are two weeks old….
A new sensation is lightly touching you, barely there. Your tongue darts out to taste it. It makes your eyes narrow and your nose widens to catch a new sensation that you want to taste. You instinctively wonder if you can see what it is, so you turn your head. A kaleidoscope of green surrounds you. And then … too bright… so you close your eyes and feel everything pour into your skin. You have just met the sun and a warm breeze for the first time.
We are born and come into this world as integrated physical and spiritual beings in perfect reciprocity with the animate earth. Our perception of the world around us is informed by our physical senses and a spiritual resonance with all of organic life.
We begin our lives perceiving a world of multiple intelligences, experiencing each new form of life we meet with the simple understanding that we are also being observed by the object of our observation, which may be very different from us.
As we mature in age our perception becomes complicated by cultural considerations. Our access to evolving and differing philosophies, scientific knowledge, our economies, our technical skills, our religions, our spiritual paths, language, the arts… remain available to us over centuries of human endeavor.
There is much to inform us as to who we are, and where our place is, within the human fabric of our lives.
In all of these influences there has grown a parallel tendency, continually reinforced by cultural consensus, to give individual definition to mental, emotional, spiritual or physical “selves”.
Some of us even have preferences as to which “self” we most identify with. We are intellectuals or scholars. We prefer the artistic or emotional life of the senses. Our spiritual paths define us. We feel we “drive our bodies” around like cars, or conversely, the shape or condition of our bodies becomes our emotional calling card. We have been habituated to regard our bodies as only a vehicle for our “souls”.
As we so implicitly understood as an infant, however, human perception is neither mentally seated, nor emotionally promoted.
Human perception is elegantly physical.
This concept may be difficult to encompass in a worldview that promotes hierarchy and separation. How can perception, which seems of a more rare, more refined essence than mere physicality, bypass both the mental and emotional powerhouses to be seated in the physical?
It is in the nature of living that we are given opportunities to heal our personal vulnerabilities. We then have the ability to use and to share the strengths we are gathering.
It is also becoming clearly understood that whenever mental and/or emotional dominance becomes the norm, causing a perceived separation within the self, there are physical implications in both health and healing. These personal imbalances, however, are more significant than we suspect.
In a self-balancing, spiritually and physically reciprocal organic system, all aspects of life are equally relevant, equally important in maintaining a healthy equilibrium.
When, as human beings, we personally maintain a healthy balancing of our own thoughts and emotions into an integrated physicality, a physicality not weighted by the separation of a mental or emotional preoccupation, this personal work is the most basic and essential human contribution a person can make to the balancing of the whole.
Cognizance of a physical perceiving teaches us how to spiritually participate in the balancing resonance of creation. It is uniquely personal and a matter of listening and trust.
It is also radical proof that we are not helpless. Our efforts are not investments to be counted up and rewarded in some later manifestation of acquired goodness, or swept away as meaningless in the tides of indifference. All our personal efforts towards physical and spiritual integration are needed. Every personal effort is integral in the finely tuned web of life.
I invite you to visit my other blog Poetry of Light.