Hello Dear Ones!
Seems we`ve chosen a broad and, potentially, controversial topic this week. Psychiatrists, psychologists, sociologists, spiritualists and thinkers of all times and all concepts have bantered this very subject. There seems no consensus has yet been reached. Many dispute, refute and argue their individual points of view till they`re blue in the face or walk out on a discussion in frustration … others tackle the concept in seclusion for fear of ridicule or simply for peace of mind and heart.
Note: I was about to write that I`m not quite certain where to take this – how to branch out to one limb of thought over another – when Mike looked up at me (he`s sitting opposite from me over a wee circle of a tabletop at a Starbucks near our home) and said he was not certain where to take this idea now that he was actually sitting down to write. I`m giggling … we are so much alike in addition to being so very different … a marital blessing!
Starbucks is a symbol. I see the round, green, black and white logo and my body`s glands go into overdrive in search of a symbolic physical response of need for more caffeine.
Music is a symbol. I hear a certain piece of music and when I recognize the theme from, say. a television series such as I Love Lucy, I immediately `envision` the expressive and hilarious antics of the red-headed Lucille Ball dancing in bare feet in a huge vat of grapes. Just hearing the music automatically has me laughing.
Scent is a symbol. The smell of a certain fragrance – such as lavender, which has me feeling the comfort and loving warmth of my grandmother`s presence – can incite recall with a simple breath.
Even our body relays messages to us through symbols. Take for example the following two true stories.
One: a friend who gradually over days and weeks finds her fingers going numb and her hand and arm aching – keeping her awake through the night with pain. When I asked her what in her life she was having difficulty `handling`she looked at me with sudden and embarrassed clarity of insight. Seems her job was challenging her to beyond what she felt she could `handle` in her day.
Two: envision a young man earning a poor-to-modest living. Rather than having a place on his own, he is residing with his best friend, that friend`s daughter plus two wee grandchildren in a very small house. He gets angry at himself for falling off the roof of a house he is helping to build. He breaks the bones in both his feet and is bedridden in that small home for many months of recovery. The symbols his body – I would dare to say his spirit – had to use to get his attention was that he needed to look at finding ways to stand solidly on his own two feet!
As the Seth quote on our prime page quite boldly suggests, might everything in life be a symbol? Are we more like computers than we care to acknowledge with all of life simplified to a combination of zeros and ones? Could what we see, smell, taste, touch, hear or sense be merely brain impulse recognition of synapse patterns traveling at lightning speed from one nerve cell to another? Like a photograph, we scientifically know we perceive things with our eyes and yet how our brains interpret that apparent item or scene, like a camera, is entirely at odds with what we `see` right in front of us.
And yet, if you and I were both to `look`at the same thing – let`s say a red flower – who`s to say that we are perceiving that item in the exact same way? A parent and a teacher would share with a child their own perception of what a `flower` is and what `red`looks like. Programming, therefore, could be the method of sharing commonalities between individuals for the purpose communication. Yet I dare to expand a different concept here.
Let`s say I`m driving to and from work on the same road I always take at the same time each day, Monday to Friday, and through all seasons. When the snows have melted (I live in Canada, land of winter snows) and the green buds appear on trees and the grasses begin to shoot up, I `know` that the groundhogs will start to peek their heads out from their burrows to bask in the sunlight. It is just something I know to be `true` in my world. As focused as I am on my driving and the road and other vehicles on the highway, I watch for the groundhogs and get excited when I notice, in my peripheral vision, the very first one of the season! Once I`ve seen the first one, then I begin to see them everywhere!
Yet imagine me having a passenger in my car. I`m driving along, knowing I`ll be seeing my little friends along the way. And I do! Yet the person who is with me in the car, when asked if he or she saw this one or that one, they do not see the wee critters! How can this be? I mean, a huge, dark brown, fat groundhog sitting on the very side of the road on its haunches basking in the sunlight is pretty hard to miss! Yet until I mention its presence, that creature is not in this individual`s scope of awareness. They do not `see`what I see … until I mention it and introduce it into their reality.
How many of you saw the movie The Secret? Do you recall the scene where the native elder stood at the shoreline and could not see the ships that the Spanish peoples used to arrive at this new world? The ships were visible to the Spanish because the symbol of the ship was a known factor to them. To this elder such a toweringly-huge water craft was not conceivable in his reality and therefore he could not `perceive`this symbol in his vision. Could everything we take for granted as being able to `see`be the very same? Think long and hard about the ways we teach our infants to respond to visual and tactile sensations. They are not innate! They must be taught!
What then is truly innate? And how can we return to a state of that innate way of connecting with the purity of our inner life? For me, that is a goal worth achieving. To return to the simplicity and grace and innocence of an infant – come fresh from Source, from God, from the Divine … to experience life as a human. Mike is often known to quote someone (I don`t know who they are, so my apologies for not offering the appropriate accreditation) that we are not human beings in search of a spiritual experience … we are spiritual beings who have come to experience the human condition. I would love to return to full-knowing and understanding of the inner symbols within my spiritual self. This, to me, is a joyous journey well worth pursuing …
In Light and Laughter,
Follow this link to read Mike’s View.